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triple whataburger

Whataburger? Waterburger? Love!

24 ‘God, who made the world and everything in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands.’ 25 Nor is He worshiped with men’s hands, as though He needed anything, since He gives to all life, breath, and all things. 26 And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, 27 so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; 28 for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, “For we are also His offspring.”’”

Paul says to the philosophers, “I’m just telling you what you already know, deep down.  You’re repressing it.  I’m preaching about the true God who created all that is.

 29 ‘Therefore, since we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, something shaped by art and man’s devising. 30 Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent.’”  You see, first he starts with the resurrection, then he starts with the fact that we’re accountable to God who created us—so he denies the repression of the knowledge of God, and then he preaches repentance.  This is not a seeker-sensitive message!  “God created all, you’re accountable to Him.  Oh, by the way, the resurrection actually existed, and because of that, you need to repent of yours sin.  And it gets worse: 31 because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead.’

32 And when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some mocked, while others said, ‘We will hear you again on this matter.33 So Paul departed from among them.”  He did not continue to argue, he didn’t beg and plead, he didn’t say, “‘Friend’ me, I’ll catch you later.”  He preached the gospel and he left.  He had other things to do.  And when he went, look what happened: 34 However, some men joined him and believed, among them Dionysius the Areopagite, a woman named Damaris, and others with them.”  The Spirit was at work, the gospel was preached, people believed.  Paul moved on.  He preached the gospel.

Sometimes we wonder what we need to say, and sometimes the simplest things are to remember the heart of the gospel—Jesus is Lord.  He’s called us to repentance and obedience.  And if we’re not living like that, we cannot claim that He is our Lord.  We are disobedient.  “Why do you call me Lord and not do the things that I do?”

Ask somebody sometime, “Do you love Jesus?”  What are they going to say?  If they’re from the South, “Don’t you know that I love Jesus, my Mama, and my Ford pickup truck?  Right?  Amen.  Come on.  I love it—that and a waterburger.”  Not a “Whataburger,” a “Waterburger.”  I heard a grandpa with his little girl, “Do you want a waterburger, or a double waterburger, or a triple wateburger?”  That triple Whataburger was taller than she was.  But this is what we “love.”  Really, do you love Jesus? I’m going to give you a chance to defend yourself now.  You love Jesus?  Do you know how Jesus defines love?  “If you love Me, keep My commands.” (John 14:15)  If you love Me, He says, do what I say, live like what I have empowered you to live like.

Another example is seen in peculiar propensities.  In First Peter chapter 4: Therefore, since Christ suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same mind, for he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, that he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh for the lusts of men, but for the will of God. For we have spent enough of our past lifetime in doing the will”—You know, I noticed that First Peter 4:3 is never anybody’s life verse.  Everybody’s life verse is, “I know the plans I have for you, plans for prosperity and success.”  Really?  Here’s your life verse: “For we have spent enough of our past lifetime in doing the will of the Gentiles.”  Enough already with the sin.  Don’t you get tired of sin?  Enough!  “—when we walked in lewdness, lusts, drunkenness, revelries, drinking parties, and abominable idolatries. In regard to these, they think it strange that you do not run with them in the same flood of dissipation, speaking evil of you.”

I mean, after all, if you’re in the right “dissipation”—if you’re not running in the “same” dissipation, then how can we reach the lost?  And you know what dissipations are?  Dissipations are used as if they are the tools we have to adopt to get the gospel to them, because if we don’t play what they play, they won’t listen to us, right?  So we are going to go and be one of them, and we are going to show that we are not above them.  We are going to show that we are just like them.  This is NOT Biblical evangelism! Instead, if we are walking as we ought, Peter says, “They think it strange that you don’t run in the same flood of dissipation.  And they speak evil of you.”  Well, They will give an account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.”  That’s a frightening verse, isn’t it?

12 Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is try you.”  And here’s where we get off track.  It’s not so much that we often think that God’s Word is strange—we think it’s strange when people react to the Word of God, right?  “Don’t you see!  It’s plain!  I mean, you know, I get it.  Why don’t you get it?  It’s simple.”  And then we try to explain it.  “No, I can’t explain this very well.  Maybe you don’t understand it, because I can’t explain it…”

It’s the Word of God, and the Spirit opens our eyes and opens our minds and teaches us.  Praise God for the enumeration of resources we have available to help understand the Word of God today.  But we need to use the tools, and we need to understand, when we are put in a trial—that’s not strange.  That’s not foreign.  That’s not out of the ordinary.  That’s the Christian life.

“Those who will live godly in Christ Jesus” will cruise on the Love Boat on into heaven until Jesus comes back?  Is that what it says?  “Those who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will suffer persecution” (2 Tim.3:12)  Is that what you signed up for?  The world will react.  Don’t think that it’s strange.  We can be grieved by it, we can be vexed by it, we can be angered by it.  But don’t think it’s strange.  The world doesn’t get it.  They don’t get us.  You see, to them we’re foolish.  To them it’s not just the Word of God that’s strange, we’re strange.  We are strange to the people in the world, and we’re strange to people who think they’re in the church, but who are really in the world and just don’t know it yet.  We’re strange!  It is foreign.  We’re part of a different kingdom here.  Rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings.  Oh, did he just say “Rejoice in sufferings”?  That’s okay, Paul tells us, “You want to boast?  Boast in the cross.”  Boast in the fact that you couldn’t do it on your own, and Jesus had to come do it for you.

13 Rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy. 14 If you are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are you, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you.  On their part He is blasphemed, but on your part He is glorified.”  Don’t think it’s strange.

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