Cacophony. That’s a funny word. Do you know what it means? It’s defined as, “a harsh discordant and meaningless mixture of sounds.” It’s like the orchestra when it’s warming up. It’s like the city street filled with engine noise and horns and shouts of people. We live in a world that is filled with cacophony. A lot of noise.
Recently a brother in our meeting asked me, “What do you think of Matthew 28:19?”
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.”
How often are you anxious? You’ll be trying to concentrate on something and you keep getting distracted to a problem. You lie awake at night with something churning in your mind causing consternation. The more you think about it the more your palms sweat. There is a pit in your stomach. Your heart beats faster.
We’ve all felt that way. The question is how often do you feel that way?
The subject of Elisha healing the leprous Naaman is one with obvious lessons and I thought it would be good to move through the story this morning.
Naaman was an amazing example of humility and faith. His faith was so pronounced that Jesus picked him as an example to the synagogue in Nazareth. If you’ll turn to Luke 4:22 you’ll see after Jesus’ reading of Isaiah that the people were amazed and doubted by saying, “Is not this Joseph’s son?” There was a great amount of skepticism towards Jesus, so he responded to their unbelief in verse 23,
Not too long ago, I called up an old acquaintance, a brother in Christ. We had sporadically kept in touch throughout the years even though we lived very far apart. At one time we had been in the same ecclesia and shared some special history, so I felt a close bond to him. It had been awhile since we had talked. A lady picked up the phone and said, “There’s no one here by that name. You must have the wrong number”. I double checked but that was the one I had always used. I emailed him to get what must be a new number. No answer.
Josiah was an amazingly unique king. The record in 2 Kings 23:25 gives the summary of his life like this,
“And like unto him was there no king before him, that turned to the LORD with all his heart, and with all his soul, and with all his might, according to all the law of Moses; neither after him arose there any like him.”
There had been good kings before but none that responded so thoroughly and whole hearted as King Josiah. His dedication and zeal were unsurpassed.
I’d like to share a story with you about compassion or rather the lack there of. This is a true tale with a twist. It’s an experience where it turns out the person you thought you knew so well turns out to be completely different. Revelations come to light and your whole world changes. It’s about compassions lost.
After all these years of giving exhortations I’ve finally come up with a good one. Well, really, the only reason it is a good one is because it is full of good Greek words like euodia, eusebia, eulogeo and eucharisteo. You’ll notice that all these words start with the sound “yoo”, the letters “eu”. The Greek language has several of these prefixes that when added to a normal word change it, amplify it and give it a deeper meaning. Adding the letters “eu” to the front of a word gives the added meaning of being “good” or “well”.
Christadelphians have been using the word “ecclesia” in place of church for a long time and for good reasons. It is a special word with a lot of meaning for us, yet I wonder if it is becoming too commonplace. We get used to a word and it can lose its vitality. How do you look at your ecclesia?
In Hebrews 12:18-24 the writer compares the ecclesia to the children of Israel before mount Sinai.
I’ll admit that I’m an introvert. Somebody who’d rather be alone. Completing some task by myself. I enjoy being that way but at other times I wish I was more of an extrovert. Somebody who is naturally friendly and needs companions. To be that someone who people feel comfortable to confide in and get advice. Therefore, in the mold of a typical introvert, I found it interesting to read on the subject of friendship.