Discuss: The Task In A Time of Crisis

As we watch at an extraordinary moment in time, Ravi Zacharias explores what he calls the “hinge moments” in history as a path to examine the calling God has placed on each of our lives. As we struggle for meaning in the current situation, Ravi reminds us of Saul’s story as a lesson to never “underestimate what God can do to you, in you and through you” and to emphasize the need to be convicted by truth and undergirded by unmitigated love.

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Hi, Everyone! I LOVE these Saturday Sessions and was hoping I could get some of your insights, thoughts, and questions about some of these talks. I have some notes I took of things from the video that were highlights for me so that if you can’t watch the whole video, you can get an idea of some of the meat of the talk:

God Works Through Unexpected People in Unexpected Ways

Ravi:

Never underestimate the value of an individual.

Don’t underestimate what God can do to you, in you, and through you.

1) In times of crisis or persecution, God has worked through individuals and small groups of people in ways that created turning points in history (the “hinges of history”)

  • Ex: small number of early disciples, Stephen and Saul

  • Historian Will Durant (as quoted by Ravi):

There is no greater drama in human record than the sight of a few Christians scorned or oppressed by a succession of emperors, bearing all trials with a fierce tenacity, multiplying quietly, but building order while the enemies generated chaos, fighting the sword with the Word of God, brutality with hope, and at last defeating the strongest state that history had ever known. Cesar and Christ had met in the arena, and Christ had won.

  • These people were undergirded and motivated by truth and love.

Ravi:

Convictions ungirded by love will make the possessor of those convictions obnoxious and the dogma he or she possesses will become repulsive

2) Christ is the central, interpretive figure of all of history-past, present, and future

  • History=His Story. It is by God’s sovereign design and is made up of the stories of individuals

  • The historical background speeches given in the Bible (i.e., Stephen’s speech, Paul’s speech) connect the dots on the timeline to show God’s design in it all

  • Ravi:

Our stories are locked into history, one person at a time

  • Jesus is the constant reference point for everything that happens.

  • Existentialism: the “do” defines the “who” and is driven by the moment or the “now”

  • Traditionalism: driven by the past

  • Utopian: driven by the future

  • Biblical view: Your “who” defines your “do” and we proclaim (present) the Lords’ death (past) until he returns (future); Jesus is Lord of history, so all of time is important.

3) Conclusion

  • Your existence, your birth is a sovereign act of God. It is by design.

  • God is over all of time, and it’s your time to understand His timing

  • Each one of us has a purpose and calling by the design of God’s story, not one calling being superior to the other

  • Only two kinds of callings: profane and sacred; for us, there is no secular, only sacred

  • Expect opposition and persecution, don’t lose heart and stop; train, study, discipline yourself to run and fulfill God’s calling on your life

  • Face and leverage persecution and adversity as opportunity for witness

  • the person takes priority over the methodology

  • The gift is prior to the training, not the training to the gift; the training sharpens the gift that is already there.

Here are some questions I have:

  1. How does this speak to how we see worship and actually “being” the church as opposed to “doing” church?

  2. How do you see this speaking to our current situation?

  3. How do we evaluate and respond in and to our “new normal” according to the biblical perspective-that a) our “who” defines our “do” and b) that Jesus is the interpretive reference point of all that transpires in the past, present, and future?

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