SERIES: The Book of Acts
TEXT: Acts 17:1-9
MESSAGE: “Turning The World Upside Down”
“A striking symptom of the church’s problems in the West today is the fact that in a country such as the United States, Christians are still the overwhelming majority of citizens, but the American way of life has moved far from the way of life of Jesus—which means simply that the Christians who are the majority are living a way of life closer to the world than to the way of Jesus. In a word, they are worldly and therefore incapable of shaping their culture.”  — Os Guinness
“I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one. They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world.” — John 17:15-18
“God is turning the world upside down that it may be right side up…” — Samuel M. Zwemer and Amy E. Zwemer
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.” — Acts 1:8
TEXT: Acts 17:1-9
Q: How are Christ followers in the book of Acts turning the world upside down? It was through an upside down…(1. Messenger 2. Message 3. Mission)
  1. Messenger (v. 1-2)
“Now when they had passed through Amphipolis and Apollonia, they came to Thessalonica, where there was a synagogue of the Jews. And Paul went in, as was his custom, and on three Sabbath days he reasoned with them from the Scriptures…”
Philippians 3:4-8 — “If anyone else thinks he has reason for confidence in the flesh, I have more: circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the law, a Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to righteousness under the law, blameless. But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ.”
So, being affectionately desirous of you, we were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves, because you had become very dear to us.” — 1 Thessalonians 2:8
  1. Message (v. 3)
“…explaining and proving that it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead, and saying, “This Jesus, whom I proclaim to you, is the Christ.
“We have to stand on our heads. We have to turn upside-down. That’s what the cross of Jesus does: It turns life upside-down…When the people expected the Messiah to arrive as a king in a palace, he came as a baby in a manger. When they expected him to claim Jerusalem riding into the city on a war-horse he came riding a donkey. When the Pharisees expected him to praise their moral efforts and good works, he condemned them as hypocrites, and when those who knew they were sinners deserving judgment expected to be turned away, Jesus ate and drank with them and offered them forgiveness…And then, in the great climax of his ministry, he turned all their expectations upside-down. When they expected the Messiah to crush the pagan Roman Empire and establish God’s kingdom by the death of those who oppose God, Jesus gave himself over to the Romans and let them torture and crucify him. Instead of killing those who opposed God, Jesus died in their place. Instead of pouring God’s judgment out on sinners, he willingly let it be poured out on himself, so that sinners could be set free.” — Simon Camilleri
  1. Mission (v. 4-7)
And some of them were persuaded and joined Paul and Silas, as did a great many of the devout Greeks and not a few of the leading women. But the Jews were jealous, and taking some wicked men of the rabble, they formed a mobset the city in an uproar, and attacked the house of Jason, seeking to bring them out to the crowd. And when they could not find them, they dragged Jason and some of the brothers before the city authorities, shouting, “These men who have turned the world upside down have come here also, 7 and Jason has received them, and they are all acting against the decrees of Caesar, saying that there is another king, Jesus.
“The task of the Church in relation to the events of world history is not to be the governor and controller of them, but to be the suffering servant and witness of the Lord, manifesting in its witness the true meaning of these events.” — Lesslie Newbigin
TAKEAWAYS: How can we live for the upside down Kingdom?
    • God transforms your life into a message
    • God sent Jesus to be the message
    • God sends you out to the world
16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
 John 3:16-17

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