Tuesday, June 27, 2017

EMA Day 1: Closing Sermon

DENESH DIVYANATHAN - Jn 3:16-21 - The God Who Saves

what would God's mission support postcard say? What would the tag line / slogan be?

Not help the poor, save the environment, seek the welfare of the city

SAVE HUMANITY - that is God's mission, our work in the world

cf. creation care, holistic mission, justice and mercy, cultural mandate

Salvation? Is that the hole in our mission?

Salvation often assumed in our mission agenda

The church so easily distracted, feels she ought to reinvent herself in new Avant Gard relevant ways

But what could be more relevant than salvation?

Mission is not everything we do or God does. God's mission is to save humanity.

Mere Xianity - The church exists for nothing else than to draw men into X - all else simply a waste of time

God became man to save people

Stick with the gospel, stick with mission

Luther - Jn 3:16 - the gospel in miniature

Jn 2 and 4 - 2 miracles in canna of galilee showing J as the long-awaited messiah who has come to save, to grant kingdom access, to give eternal life

(1) God loves the world

The wonder of God's love for a wicked world

1:10 - the world did not know him

7:7 - the world hates me, its works are evil

14 - world needs to be convicted

world ruled by Satan

The world not as big but as bad

New birth, rescue from wrath and perishing needed


The only way of escape is to believe in J

2 loves - God loves the world - The world loves darkness - vv19-20 - we hate Jesus and we flee from him cos we fear exposure

A damning picture of our world, but obvious from history, news, ministry

Our world treats God like SPAM email to be filtered out of our inbox

The world has the do not disturb sign out to God

We treat God like an annoying tele-marketer we can't wait to hang up on and get rid of

J speaking to a clergyman!

Is this how you see yourself and our world?

Our fundamental problem spiritual and moral not financial, educational, environmental etc.

We face wrath, perishing without X

Gospel fruit? Blessing others or seeking their salvation?

Lots of good things can be done without an evangelistic focus. This fails to see and address people's greatest need.

1870s D L Moody in London - clergy seek the secret of his success - what do you see out of the window? In tears he said, I see countless thousands of souls that will one day spend eternity in hell if they do not find the saviour


A condemned, rebellious world, heading for perishing

A shimmering silver lining in our text

God loved this wicked world and therefore:

(2) God gave his only Son

He says this 3 times in 3vv

The infinite worth of God's gift shows the burning passion of God's love

Calvin - only son - the passion of God's love is magnified towards us by this phrase

I would not sacrifice any of my children to save you or me. The mind-blowing love of God.

My sister's keeper movie - donation of blood, bone marrow, organs to save her sister - cf. X - born to save us, sacrificed for us

The love of the Father means the life of the Son given for his enemies

When did you last marvel at the love of God for you?

cf. the world's view of love - steamy sex and soppy songs

cf. Dawkins or Stephen Fry on God as not loving - cosmic kill joy - wrong, tragic, blasphemous

God loves! Not a retribution mission to punish us but a rescue mission to save us

The gospel is such good news of a loving God who gave his only Son for rotten rebels like us

Not that we have to tell people about God's love, but that we get to!

(3) God saves anyone who believes in Jesus

How to be born again - believe in the Son

God's salvation is both exclusive / limited and extensive / unlimited

Only J offers salvation but he offers salvation to all those who believe in J

Whoever! Really means whoever. Nicodemus and the Samaritan woman. The scope of the gospel offer.

Council estate and country estate etc.


(1) We should be personally assured of our own standing before God. Even you and I can be saved if we trust in Jesus.

Assurance does not depend on how ministry is going. God loves you even though you fail! You need God's rescue even when the sun is shining and all seems well.

The faith that God has given not works save. Keep trusting in J the rescuer.

(2) This ought to galvanise our mission. All religions do not lead to God. Only Jesus leads us to the mercy of God. But the field is wide open to anyone who will believe.

All ethnic groups, all social classes - whoever!

Who could you evangelise, equip and export for the gospel of JX?

Our God saves whoever believes. Let us get the gospel out there.

Even though we are cautious and conservative Brits and not Americans we need to take the gospel out there.

The British Empire, the English language, Hudson Taylor, Carey

Bold gospel proclamation to the world should be part of the British Xian character

Will you mobilise your church? Recruit! Train! Send!

The heart of the gospel: God's love for the world compelled him to send his son on a rescue mission to save humanity, whoever will believe in Jesus

Do we assume the gospel and are we distracted from single minded gospel proclamation?

cf. cultural mandate and evangelistic focus - redeeming culture, transforming cities

Are people confused about the gospel and mission?

Of course the gospel has implications for the whole of life, but the gospel is not about everything and we are not called to do everything. Salvation. Evangelism. SAVE HUMANITY

Spurgeon: if sinners be damned, let them leap to hell over our bodies... in the teeth of our eversions, let not one go there un-warned.

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