Sermon on Staying Calm in the Face of Adversity
Each of us experiences moments of suffering and hardship. Yet, how we handle those moments says a lot about our spiritual character. In John 18, Jesus models the art of staying calm in the face of adversity.
John 18 begins with Judas’ betrayal of Jesus leading through Jesus standing before Pilate. It includes Jesus being questioned by the priests and Peter’s repeated denials of being connected to Jesus. In the midst of the chaos that was leading to Jesus’ crucifixion, there were conflicting ideas that were swirling. The tension between Pilate and Jesus, the betrayal of Jesus by Judas, and the tension between politics and religion. In this chaos Jesus maintained His peaceful nature and found calm in the storm.
Parallel accounts of the events in John 18 are recording in the other three gospels:
Listen as Pastor Dwight expounds further upon on the significance of these events.
Notes: Sermon available for online listening until February 2nd, 2020. To view more sermons, visit our Sermon Archive.
Bulletin Message from the Pastor
Getting to the Kingdom of Heaven
In order for a kingdom to exist, it needs a few things. First, a kingdom requires a place, that is, a defined area. Secondly, a kingdom needs a king. And lastly, a kingdom needs subjects to be ruled over. These things are true of earthly kingdoms in which the population is ruled by a king in a confined area.
The Kingdom of God is not exactly like an earthly kingdom. In the first place, the boundaries of God’s Kingdom are in the spiritual heart and soul of those whom He created. John the Baptist, as well as Jesus, preached that belief in Jesus as the Son of God and repentance of one’s sins are prerequisites for entrance into the kingdom. Jesus spoke in Mark 1:15 saying, “The time is fulfilled and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the good news.”
Unlike earthly kingdoms, the Kingdom of God exists in our minds, souls, and spirits. The Greek word “kingdom” means to rule. The Kingdom, therefore, is the rule of God in our hearts. We choose to acknowledge God’s rule in us or choose to reject it based upon our obedience (or disobedience) to His will. Keep in mind, though, that God is really in charge whether we accept Him or reject Him.
While speaking to Nicodemus, Jesus said to him:
“Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” Nicodemus said to Him, “How can a man be born when he is old? He cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born, can he?” Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.John 3:3-5
Being in the Kingdom
Citizenship in the kingdom of God is predicated on being spiritually reborn and being sealed with the Holy Spirit. As citizens of this spiritual kingdom, it is our function to tell others of our conversion and to demonstrate our allegiance to Him by doing His will. As believers of Christ, we are to worship Him as Lord. Acknowledging Christ as Lord is, in effect, recognizing His reign. We are to live out His teaching and live in anticipation of His return.
When Jesus taught His disciples how to pray, part of the directive was to pray that God’s Kingdom would come into full fruition on earth: “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:10). Let us pray that His will be done in us as in others.
Pastor Dwight <><