Friday, September 23, 2005

Paul Ceder Challenges Lombard Attendees

A video from Mission America, Paul Cedar’s organization, followed. It was a humorous take on faulty ways of evangelism.

Paul Cedar, who is a graduate of Northern (’68), spoke. Hurricanes Katrina, Rita: turbulent weather. We’re in turbulent weather as well.

The problem of forgetting the basics

John 17 on authentic spiritual unity. Jesus’ “High Priestly Prayer”
John 17:20-23

Authentic unity is not organization or administrative; real unity moves the world to believe that the Father sent the Son.

Three ingredients of authentic spiritual unity

1. John 4:31-34. Jesus didn’t come to do His “own thing.” He came to do the will of His Father. That’s the basic foundation of Christian ministry. Not doing the “latest thing”, but doing the will of the Father. Call it Fidelity to God and His revealed word. That means denying yourself, taking up the life of the cross and following Jesus. You cannot have spiritual unity with people who are not following Jesus as Lord. Jesus also came to “finish His work”. That work was the cross—the heart of it all.
2. Next is Focus: the Great Commission. He turns to the disciples and tells them of their task: “the fields are ripe for harvest.” Unity is never an end in itself, but a means to the end of winning the lost who grows to become like Jesus.
3. Finally, the role of the Spirit—the Fullness of the Spirit.. Jesus says He will depart so that the Holy Spirit will come. John 13-17, Acts 1. The danger of having “church” without the Holy Spirit. Dead orthodoxy will not do!

Today has the potential of being a kind of Pentecost.

GL: I wonder what role Mission America may have in the emerging movement.

“Our Leader is waiting for us to ask us to lead us.”

Bill Nicoson thanked Paul: 15 minute break.