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12 September 2021

Faith For Exiles - Week 1

18 to 29-year-olds that grew up as Christians

22% are Prodigals

30% are Nomads

38% are Habitual Churchgoers

10% are Resilient Disciples

Now these are the gifts Christ gave to the church: the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, and the pastors and teachers. Their responsibility is to equip God’s people to do his work and build up the church, the body of Christ. This will continue until we all come to such unity in our faith and knowledge of God’s Son that we will be mature in the Lord, measuring up to the full and complete standard of Christ. Ephesians 4:11-13 NLT

After that generation died, another generation grew up who did not acknowledge the Lord or remember the mighty things he had done for Israel. The Israelites did evil in the Lord’s sight and served the images of Baal… and they intermarried with them. Israelite sons married their daughters, and Israelite daughters were given in marriage to their sons. And the Israelites served their gods. Judges 2:10-11; 3:6 NLT

He did what was pleasing in the Lord’s sight and followed the example of his ancestor David. He did not turn away from doing what was right… Never before had there been a king like Josiah, who turned to the Lord with all his heart and soul and strength, obeying all the laws of Moses. And there has never been a king like him since. 2 Kings 22:2; 23:25 NLT

So Josiah removed all detestable idols from the entire land of Israel and required everyone to worship the Lord their God. And throughout the rest of his lifetime, they did not turn away from the Lord, the God of their ancestors. 2 Chronicles 34:33 NLT

“O Israel,” says the Lord, “if you wanted to return to me, you could. You could throw away your detestable idols and stray away no more. Then when you swear by my name, saying, ‘As surely as the Lord lives,’ you could do so with truth, justice, and righteousness. Then you would be a blessing to the nations of the world, and all people would come and praise my name.” Jeremiah 4:1-2 NLT

I FEAR THE CHURCH TODAY WANTS A KING JOSIAH REFORMATION INSTEAD OF A JEREMIAH RESTORATION

This is what the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, the God of Israel, says to all the captives he has exiled to Babylon from Jerusalem: “Build homes, and plan to stay. Plant gardens, and eat the food they produce. Marry and have children. Then find spouses for them so that you may have many grandchildren. Multiply! Do not dwindle away! And work for the peace and prosperity of the city where I sent you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, for its welfare will determine your welfare.” This is what the Lord of Heaven’s Armies, the God of Israel, says: “Do not let your prophets and fortune-tellers who are with you in the land of Babylon trick you. Do not listen to their dreams, because they are telling you lies in my name. I have not sent them,” says the Lord. This is what the Lord says: “You will be in Babylon for seventy years. But then I will come and do for you all the good things I have promised, and I will bring you home again. For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen. If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me.  Jeremiah 29:4-13 NLT

I do everything to spread the Good News and share in its blessings. Don’t you realize that in a race everyone runs, but only one person gets the prize? So run to win! All athletes are disciplined in their training. They do it to win a prize that will fade away, but we do it for an eternal prize. So I run with purpose in every step. I am not just shadowboxing. I discipline my body like an athlete, training it to do what it should. Otherwise, I fear that after preaching to others I myself might be disqualified. 1 Corinthians 9:23-27 NLT

1. RESILIENT DISCIPLES EXPERIENCE INTIMACY WITH JESUS

2. RESILIENT DISCIPLES ARE DEVELOPING CULTURAL DISCERNMENT

3. RESILIENT DISCIPLES FORGE MEANINGFUL INTERGENERATIONAL RELATIONSHIPS

4. RESILIENT DISCIPLES ARE TRAINED FOR VOCATIONAL DISCIPLESHIP

5. RESILIENT DISCIPLES CURB THEIR ENTITLEMENT AND SELF-CENTERED TENDENCIES TO LIVE A LIFE OF MISSION

Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live! You can make this choice by loving the Lord your God, obeying him, and committing yourself firmly to him. This is the key to your life. Deuteronomy 30:19-20 NLT