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Our International Neighbor

Sermon Notes

Sermon Series: The Power of One

Main Verses (Duet. 10:12-19, Matthew 8:5-13)

To be the greatest church, we must follow the greatest commandment from the greatest person for the greatest glory.

The Big Idea

Identify ONE person this year to share your faith experience with through personal conversations.

Jesus’ earthly ministry took place in a fairly small region of the Middle East. But his larger mission had an international focus. One way this is illustrated is Jesus’ one-on-one conversation with a Roman soldier. Through this dialogue, Jesus agreed to heal the Centurion’s servant, and then he followed that up with a brief teaching (Matt 8:5-13).

Loving those different from us has its roots in Old Testament Law.

Key Term Foreigner

(גֵּיר pronounced geyr)- a temporary inhabitant, a newcomer lacking inherited rights

  1. God has the right to tell us how to live (Deut. 10:12-14)
  2. Because God owns it all, He rules it all.

2. God’s love for others is an expression of His powerful nature (Deut. 10:17-18)

  • We love those who are different (foreigners) because we once were in their position. (Duet 10:19, Eph. 2:12-13).
  • God loves outsiders. And we should love outsiders
  • The real truth is- we’ve all been outsiders

The different thing about Christianity is us love people who are different, because God, who is different than us, has loved us. And His love has made all the difference.

APPLICATION:

Who is the outsider that God has called you to love?


The Online Pastor in OIKOS

  • Drives online discussion
  • Oversees the Whistle Platform
  • Encourages weekly participation

Discussion Questions

TALK IT OUT: 

  1. Pastor Rusty offers this simple yet profound challenge, “Love God with all you got and love others as well as you can.” That is obviously a statement that is far easier to agree with than to do. Which is the bigger challenge for you, loving God or loving others? Why?  
  1. One way you can love others is to identify one person this year to share your faith experience with through personal conversations. Who might that one person be?  
  1. In Matthew 8:5-13, Jesus conversed with a Roman soldier and then agreed to heal his servant. Jesus was amazed by the centurion’s faith. Pastor Rusty observes that although Jesus’ ministry was confined to a fairly small region of the Middle East, His larger mission had an international flavor. In fact, Jesus’ passion for others beyond our national borders has deep roots in the Old Testament. How can we bless those who were born outside this country?  
  1. Loving those different from us is connected deep within the character of God. Deuteronomy 10:18 makes the statement that God “defends the cause of the fatherless and the widow, and loves the foreigner residing among you.” Based on this verse, why do you think God loves foreigners? 
  1. Verse 19 adds this challenge for us, “you are to love those who are foreigners.” The verse reminds us that God’s people were once foreigners in Egypt. Every family was once an immigrant in this country as well. Why should this realization prompt us to love those just getting their start in the U. S.?  
  1. Pastor Rusty reminds us that loving our neighbor is often about loving people who are radically different than us. He says, “Christianity is us loving people who are different because God, who is different than us, has loved us. And His love has made all the difference for us.” Reflect on how God’s love has changed your life when others might not have considered you worthy of God’s interest.  

LIVE IT OUT 

  • List three to five outsiders whom God has called you to love.  
  • Ask God to show you how you can love those who are foreigners.  
  • Make a list of at least three ways you can demonstrate love to those who aren’t firmly established in this country.  
  • Commit yourself to put at least two of the three ways you just listed into practice this week.  
  • Pray for the person or persons you just committed to helping.  

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