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June 2, 2019 Sermon

June 2, 2019 John 17:2-26

"Power of Attorney” is a legal arrangement, which allows someone you trust, to make financial transactions in your name, according to your instructions. Think about the level of trust necessary to allow another person to carry out your business in your name.

In our Gospel text for today Jesus is investing us with Divine Power of Attorney to transact his earthly business. We are to bless, serve, forgive, and tell others about God’s love and his offer of eternal life beyond the grave. We are to tell others about Jesus’ sacrificial death on the cross, which establishes peace with God by faith.

Divine Power of Attorney also carries the responsibility to make disciples, baptize, and teach them to observe the commandments.

Divine Power of Attorney means we teach children to observe all these things I have commanded you.

Divine Power of Attorney means we practice forgiveness.

Divine Power of Attorney means we connect people to the one who is the Way, the Truth and the Life, Jesus.

For those of us who are older, we are experiencing a culture that is very different from the one in which we grew up. We are living in a Post Christian culture that tells us that “truth” is subjective to each person. In the book of Judges 17:6 it reads: “everyone does what is right in his own eyes.”

As little as 5 years ago, there was a broad consensus that our national culture should rest on a Christian worldview. That is no longer true today. Political Science has become the basis of social morality, which has no guidelines for what is right or wrong. We are enslaved to electronic technology sometimes good, sometimes not so good.

It took 40 years for radio to reach 5 million users.

It took 14 years for television to do the same.

It took only 4 years for the Internet to reach 5 million users. Today the internet is the #1 means of moving information world wide…immediately. Like it or not…God has chosen us to live in this time, in this culture.

the verses just preceding our Gospel for today, Jesus prayed; “Father, my prayer is not that you take them out of this world but that you protect them from the evil one….Your word is truth….as you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world….and the world has hated them because of your word.” (John 17:15,17)

The Post Modern world equates Christianity with being a hate group and we must admit, some of the hostility we have caused ourselves by being mean spirited, lacking compassion, not willing to forgive. The history of Christianity is not without blemish.

Jesus has given us “Divine Power of Attorney” by entrusting us with the Word of God that we will make disciples of all nations. God offers eternal life beyond the grave in heaven by faith in CHRIST alone.

So has Jesus’ prayer for unity in His Church gone unanswered for all these years?

We may be tempted to think that If only Jesus were here things would be different. The truth of the matter is that He is here! The Ascension promise of our LORD is the sending of the Holy Spirit. Our LORD Jesus is still building His Church in the world. His Spirit is active with or without us-- uniting people of every tribe, nation, and language to Himself.

True unity in CHRIST comes only through the forgiveness of our sins as defined in the Bible; for only united in Him can we be truly united to one another. There can be no unity, no one-world religion, without every single person accepting Jesus CHRIST as LORD and Savior.

And so Jesus prayed for “those who will believe in me through their word—through the apostles’ preaching, that they may all be one.” Their word is the preaching is both the Law that shows us our sin, and the Gospel that shows us our Savior. The preaching of the Law reveals our disunity caused by our selfishness. Sadly enough many today are willing to give up the God’s truth for the devil’s creed of “live and let live.” The devil’s creed is the exactly opposite of what Jesus did – Jesus loved us enough to save us.

 

That is the preaching of the Gospel, that shows us the divine remedy for disunity–forgiveness in CHRIST who came and died to pay the price—to restore unity by uniting us to Himself.

 

Jesus is uniting us—one sinner at a time. He is our advocate before God the Father. There is no unity unless we receive as our LORD and Savior. In Him we are united and joined to one another just as is in the Father and the Father is in Him. Having Divine Power of Attorney we live and die for one another. We serve and pray for one another. We forgive and love one another--unconditionally.

That unity, perfect harmony, and oneness will always be challenged, as we live in the church militant. Complete harmony and unity will finally come as we gather around the Lamb with all the company of Heaven. Amen