Life Beyond Belief
Mar 29 2008 • Greg Boyd, Mike Davis
Too many Christians today believe the right things about Jesus, but they have little more. To them, life with Christ is primarily about what they understand in their heads. But there is more than belief. Jesus came to set people free to live, not just believe. He came to open possibilities, not just settle for what we have now. He came to provide an experience that is beyond what you can imagine.
Downloadable Prayer Journal
Downloadable Discussion Guide
Sermons in this series:
What does it mean to “get saved?” Many people (especially people in the United States) see salvation as a one time event and the result of “believing” certain things about God. While belief is important, salvation encompasses much more than that. The salvation that God offers is a continual personal transformation where the trash of our old lives is replaced by the beauty of God's Kingdom.
Some of Jesus' words were very challenging to the people of his time, and for us. One of the traits that he gave strong warnings about was hypocrisy – when our “public” lives don't match who we really are. Keeping these parts of our lives aligned is a major challenge and it almost always requires sacrifice. We don't like to move outside our comfort zones, but it's what is required if we want to partner with God to build his Kingdom.
How does true spiritual change occur? Sometimes we focus on the outside and try to change ourselves through what we do. But we don’t become clean by paying attention to external “religious” behaviors. In this sermon we’re challenged with the example of generosity to the poor and learn that becoming clean is an “inside-out” process, where we allow the Spirit of God to transform us on the inside so that our outside behavior lines up with his Kingdom.
Pain & Suffering,
Jesus came to set us free so that we can shine with his love. But sometimes darkness in our own heart gets in the way of the life he wants for us. Many times our own thoughts, beliefs and feelings are at the root of why we don’t live as Kingdom people. A key to addressing this darkness is to realize that our perceptions are not what’s real, and instead align our thoughts and feelings with God’s truth.
Pain & Suffering,
Jesus didn’t water down his message for the crowds or give them just what they wanted to hear. Jesus called them (and us) to repent – to face reality and turn from living in lies that hinder our ability to participate in what God is doing in the world. God’s Kingdom happens in our lives and in our communities when we repent and line our lives up with God’s way of looking at the world and God’s ways of living.
In our culture celebrity worship is rampant. Because of their money, talent, and the attention they receive, many of us live through pop icons. Sadly, this same mentality creeps into the church. We can be tempted to elevate church leaders above everyone else and think that the Kingdom happens through them alone. Their prayers count more. Their words are more powerful. Their service is more significant. Jesus came to destroy this thinking!