Lord, You're In Charge
Sermon Topic Temptation
Sermon Week Fourteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time
Scripture Summary Luke 10:17,19
A man walked into a talent agent's office to see if there were any openings for a specialty act. "What do you do?" the agent asked. "I imitate birds," said the man. "Can't use you," said the agent, "bird imitations are a dime a dozen. You're just wasting my time. Get out of here." Whereupon, the man flapped his arms and flew out the window.
Psalm 124 is a song of thanksgiving for the power of God that enables us to experience freedom from bondage:
Blessed be the Lord,
We have escaped as a bird
from the snare of the fowlers;
the snare is broken,
and we have escaped!
Our help is in the Name of the Lord,
who made heaven and earth (Ps. 124:6, 7).
A bird that has escaped from the hunter's snare and flown free is a powerful image for us to ponder. If we can be that bird and try to feel what that escape must have felt like, we can begin to get a glimmer of what Jesus means when He tells us that He has come to set us free!
It has been said that every experience of spiritual bondage, every entrapment in the snares of the devil, can be traced to contempt for the Cross. We recall the Gospel episode in which Jesus asks Simon Peter the most important question that can be asked of any of us in our entire life: "Who do you say that I am?" Simon Peter answers, "You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God." Whereupon, Jesus then says that He must go to Jerusalem to be crucified, and on the third day rise again. And Peter takes Him aside and begins to "rebuke Him, saying, 'God forbid, Lord! This shall never happen to You'" (Mt. 16:22). Peter is telling Jesus that he is willing to have a Divine Christ but he is not willing to have a suffering Christ. "Get behind Me, Satan!" Jesus answers. You are a hindrance to Me; you are not on the side of God, but of men" (Mt. 16:23). In [...]