Respond to Sunday, September 1st, 2019
“Steward Your Exile Well” – Jeremiah 29:4-7 | Pastor Bob Bolander
Truth: As exiles, we must steward our exile well. The prophet Jeremiah wrote to those exiled in Babylon. In these letters he was not focusing on the promise of an inheritance that was coming but rather on their responsibility while God has them in Babylon. God had a period of exile for all of his people at different times and it is no different for us.
Response: How do you respond to the idea that we are living in exile today? Would you go so far to say that God has “gifted” us exile? Don’t pray for this exile to end but rather ask God to show you how to steward your exile well.
Truth: We are to establish our presence in the city of exile. We are to live now as a taste of the kingdom to come. We are to live now as a time of God’s blessing, not a time of punishment. We are to live now as a time for mission. We aren’t called to just have bigger homes and gardens.
Response: How do you respond to “settling down” in this world? What are some ways we can show that we are living under the reign and rule of Christ now? Pray that God will allow you to see this time of exile, not as punishment, but as an opportunity to grow and be on mission.
Truth: We are to demonstrate growth in the city of exile. We are not just to be in the world but in the world growing. Our culture is less “churched” partly because growth isn’t taking place within the body of Christ. We must have a demonstration of God working in our midst.
Response: How are you bringing more people to the Creator – the one true God? Are you seeing God at work in your life? Ask God to demonstrate his manifest presence in your life this week.
Truth: We are to seek the welfare of the city to which you are exiled. We are not to remove ourselves from the cares of this world. We are to care about what our community is facing.
Response: Do you seek the welfare of your neighbors and those you come in contact with on a regular basis? Does your heart break for them? Do you pray for them and ask if they have any needs? Ask God to place on your heart someone in your neighborhood, work, school, or community that you care and pray for this week.
Truth: God commands the Israelites to “seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you (Jeremiah 29:7a).” This would be easy if they had just moved into the newest suburb of choice with the highest-rated schools and a going housing market. Of course, they would want to benefit that kind of community. But the Israelites are being forced to live in the community of the very captors that destroyed the homes their families had lived in for generations and dragged them off to a place they don’t want to be.
Response: The non-Christians in our communities are not our enemies, but it certainly might feel that way at times. They don’t care about the same we care about. And even though we are “hateful” for disagreeing with them, they are “right” for saying we’re wrong. It might be more comfortable to shut ourselves off to the communities around us, but we cannot be beneficial to a community we are not a part of. Help your children connect with people in your community by interacting with neighbors, learning and using the names of local store clerks, keeping your neighborhood clean, and praying for city leaders.
Response: Participating in the community outreach event running from September 29 through November 17 is a practical way to “seek the welfare of the city.” Please strongly consider doing this as a family on your Community Group’s designated dates.
Prepare for Sunday, September 8th, 2019
Pray for the Church
- Leaders in worship: Pastor Rickey Primrose, Brandon Ramey & the Worship Music Ministry.
- God will meet with us through His word and by His Spirit, lead us to worship Christ and grow in Christ-likeness.
- God will help us to be a church of zeal and hope, passionate about ministry and confident in His promises.
- God will make us more passionate about and obedient to His mission of leading people to trust and follow Christ.
Prepare for the Message
“Extend Gospel Grace” | Pastor Rickey Primrose
We continue our mini-series this week entitled, “Distinct: The Core Values of MacArthur Blvd. Baptist Church.” This Sunday we will be looking at our value, “Extend Gospel Grace.” Take some time this week to review our Core Values thus far. The Core Values that shape MacArthur Blvd Baptist Church are: Submit to God’s Word: We will biblically transformed, not simply informed; Depend on God’s Spirit: We will seek the Spirit’s presence, not rely on our own ability; Pursue Kingdom Diversity: We will pursue Gospel unity, not just diverse appearances. Have these values clarified the purpose and goals of our church for you? How are you implementing these values? How do you see the values shaping you? How do you see these values shaping our church?
Music for Sunday
Victory In Jesus