Matt Reagan Morning rally on January 1st, 2015 at the Campus Outreach Milwaukee New Years Conference
We're sorry! The audio is not available for this talk.
Better isn't necessarily easier.
The worlds life is harder because they are without hope and without God in the world. But we have hope for those who are in Christ.
3 ways that it is harder:
We will not be universally liked.
“Behold, I am sending you out as sheep in the midst of wolves, so be wise as serpents and innocent as doves.” (Matthew 10:16 ESV)
“and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved.” (Matthew 10:22 ESV)
“Indeed, all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted,” (2 Timothy 3:12 ESV)
“And when they had called in the apostles, they beat them and charged them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and let them go. Then they left the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer dishonor for the name.” (Acts 5:40–41 ESV)
We fight against ourselves constantly.
“For if you live according to the flesh you will die, but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live.” (Romans 8:13 ESV)
We are not escapists.
We live in a faith system with its foundation in Christ which means we can look at anything in the face (death, cancer, work) and handle it by His grace.
Because we are not escapists we are sorrowful (2 Cor. 6:10a).
What are we sorrowful about?
Our sin (2 Cor. 7:10)
The pain, hopelessness, helplessness, and brokenness of the world.
“When he saw the crowds, he had compassion for them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.” (Matthew 9:36 ESV)
“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing!” (Luke 13:34 ESV)
“For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.” (Romans 8:22 ESV)
Over the condemnation of the world.
“I am speaking the truth in Christ—I am not lying; my conscience bears me witness in the Holy Spirit— that I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my brothers, my kinsmen according to the flesh.” (Romans 9:1–3 ESV)
How is sorrow better?
Because it is real.
Because it makes us like Jesus. Jesus came to be our suffering savior.
“that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death,” (Philippians 3:10 ESV)
The capacity for sorrow enables the capacity for joy both now and eternal life.
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance that is imperishable, undefiled, and unfading, kept in heaven for you, who by God’s power are being guarded through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you rejoice, though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been grieved by various trials, so that the tested genuineness of your faith—more precious than gold that perishes though it is tested by fire—may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ. Though you have not seen him, you love him. Though you do not now see him, you believe in him and rejoice with joy that is inexpressible and filled with glory, obtaining the outcome of your faith, the salvation of your souls.” (1 Peter 1:3–9 ESV)
Personal Reflection Question:
What does it mean that “better isn't always easier?” Do you believe it? Why or why not?