UPDATE ON VOLUNTEERS AND GIVING
Morning. My name is David Sorn, I’m the Lead Pastor here at Renovation Church.
Hey, before we get into our Psalm for this morning, I want to update you on where we’re at with our volunteer and Harvest giving situations.
As I mentioned last week, we are aiming at opening up our building on February 7th, but we had a pretty massive volunteer shortage due to so many stepping back from volunteering in 2020
Which is totally understandable given what we all faced
However, we’re hearing that SO many of you are coming back, so we’ve been asking people that if they are coming, to please serve with us
We don’t want you to just come and watch and consume, but to help change the world with us
We have made some really good progress on this over the past 7 days, but we still have a little ways to go to get enough volunteers to open.
Our biggest need is in Renovation Kids
I mentioned last week that literally 50% of our Kids volunteers temporarily stepped away in 2020.
Now, if 90% of you come back in February (and bring your kids…and your friends that you invite bring their kids), but we still only have 50% of our volunteers…
Well, you can see how this won’t work…and that’s how we’ll end up turning people away at the door.
We also still have huge volunteer needs on our Greeting Team and Cleaning Team as well.
The best way you can help is by responding to your Ministry Leader’s email and letting them know that you will return to their volunteer team (that is if you’re attending in person)
Or, if you’d like to sign-up for the very first time to serve, that really helps too!
Just go to the app, connect tab, and serve, or you can do it on our website as well.
We’ll make a final announcement next Sunday on whether or not we can open on February 7th or if we need to push it back a few weeks.
Also, a ton of you have asked me how we are doing regarding the $33,000 we were short in giving the bank for our down payment on the building.
And I’m so happy to announce that we made that up (all of it!) in just 1 week!
You guys are incredible.
Thank you to the so many of you that gave!
It’s such a thrill to Pastor this church.
God is good!
All right, let’s jump in to this week’s message
One of the things you hear a lot about the Bible is how many prophecies there are in the Old Testament about the coming of Jesus
These are Godly predictions made about Jesus hundreds of years before he came, or in some cases, even a thousand years.
We sometimes tend to think that you would find these prophecies in the books of the Prophets (and indeed, many of them are there)
But you might be surprised to hear that you can also find prophecies about Jesus in the Psalms.
And as we continue in our Psalms series, Songs from the Heart, today, I want to look at a Psalm with a great prophecy about Jesus.
IN FACT, this week’s Psalm is actually the most quoted Psalm in the New Testament.
So, find a Bible and find your way to Psalm 110
This famous Psalm is directly quoted by New Testament authors like: Matthew, Mark, and Luke.
It’s also in Acts, 1 Corinthians, and Hebrews.
And some scholars say that its teaching is, at minimum, alluded to a total of 27 times in the New Testament!
And so, it’s an important Psalm!
It’s a Psalm of King David
So it’s written about a 1,000 years before Jesus was born.
I want to read you the first verse, explain a little, and then we’ll read the rest.
You’re going to want to keep the passage in front of you today though.
(Psalm 110:1) – NIV
The Lord says to my lord:
“Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet.”
Okay, so David writes, “The Lord says to my lord”
What does that mean?
Well, “The Lord” (with capital letters like that…the 1st one) is Yahweh in Hebrew, which is God’s personal name, so it’s referring to God…
But who is the 2nd lord?
Well, who else would be above David??
At that time, David was the king, there is no one else who was higher than him.
When we read the rest of the Psalm, we’ll see that the 2nd Lord David mentions seems to be incredibly powerful and even a person who will still be alive in the future…
And when we read the New Testament, we see that Jesus tells us that the 2nd Lord is indeed…Himself…the messiah!
So, King David, who had an incredibly special relationship with God, is made privy to this amazing conversation.
David says, “The Lord (God the Father) says to my lord (The Messiah…Jesus):
So it’s God the Father is talking to Jesus in this Psalm:
The Father is saying:
“Sit at right my hand, Jesus…until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet”
Okay, now that we have our bearings, let’s keep reading the rest of the Psalm
(Psalm 110:2-7) – NIV
The Lord will extend your mighty scepter from Zion, saying, “Rule in the midst of your enemies!” 3 Your troops will be willing on your day of battle. Arrayed in holy splendor, your young men will come to you like dew from the morning’s womb.
4 The Lord has sworn and will not change his mind: “You are a priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek.”
5 The Lord is at your right hand; he will crush kings on the day of his wrath. 6 He will judge the nations, heaping up the dead and crushing the rulers of the whole earth. 7 He will drink from a brook along the way, and so he will lift his head high.
I want you to notice something about this amazing prophesy…because it’s going to organize the rest of what we talk about
God the Father is describing his Son, the Messiah as two things.
As King, and as Priest.
If I were to title this Psalm, I might even call it, “The Prophecy of the Priest King”
The Psalm starts by describing how Jesus will rule like a King.
He will be, as Scripture tells us, the King of Kings.
Verse 2 says His rule will extend out from Zion (that’s Jerusalem)
And we know that happened…as Christianity began its spread from Jerusalem (just like the prophecy said it would)
Then we’re told that after Jesus’ rule begins, his troops will be willing in battle. (verse 3)
They will be arrayed in holy splendor.
Even young men will rush to join the battle.
They won’t be drafted or conscripted, but they will volunteer to join his battle.
Now, let me be clear here: God is not talking about a physical battle…but a spiritual one.
Unlike Islam, the Christian church did not expand in history through physical violence and conquest…but by the sharing of Good News.
Our battle is not a physical battle, but a spiritual battle.
This is explained in Ephesians 6 in the NT
(Ephesians 6:11-12) – NIV
11 Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.
This kind of language may sound odd to you, because we don’t tend to use military terms anymore when we talk about spreading the news of Jesus across the globe (probably because those terms can be easily misinterpreted)…
But our work is indeed a battle against evil.
And the military terms are somewhat Biblical
Surely you’ve heard of the Salvation Army?
You might know them now as a clothing store, or the group that rings the red kettle bell at Christmas.
That’s not how they started, nor was that their main purpose when they were founded.
Kind of like the YMCA.
You might not be surprised to learn that the Young Men’s Christian Association wasn’t originally founded as a place for you to take Zumba classes
A few years ago I read Helen Hosier’s excellent biography of William & Catherine Booth, the founders of the Salvation Army.
Such a good book!
In the early days of The Salvation Army, they would literally march through the streets of East London with a few hundred Christians while playing in their Salvation Army Band (it was event evangelism!!), and they would encourage others to join them in their walk.
Some people threw food at them as they walked, but hundreds would often join them.
Then, they would end their parade at a warehouse and William Booth would stand up and preach the Gospel to the people.
They called themselves an army for the Lord. The Salvation Army.
William Booth, the founder, was known as the General.
They were in a spiritual battle to win people to Jesus.
And we too are in the Lord’s army.
And I pray that you battle for Him in getting the good news to His people.
The Lord wants to use you and this church in mighty ways this year.
I read a great quote on this two weeks ago from CT Studd:
“I pray that when I die, all of hell will rejoice that I am no longer in the fight.” CT Studd
That should be our heart as we battle against evil, for our King.
But, here’s the thing, Jesus is not just our King, but our priest.
Look at verse 4 again:
(Psalm 110:4) - NIV
4 The Lord has sworn and will not change his mind: “You are a priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek.”
The Father is saying to His Son, Jesus, that He is not just the King of Kings, but a priest for the people.
One who has the authority to minister before God on behalf of the people.
Just as the priests in the Old Testament brought the sacrifices of the people before God and helped reconcile the people back to God.
But the Messiah is not just any ordinary priest…we’re told that he’s a priest in the order of Melchizedek
If you’re unfamiliar with Melchizedek, he is from Genesis chapter 14 in the Bible
There are actually just 3 verses about him…here they are:
(Genesis 14:18-20) – NIV
18 Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. He was priest of God Most High, 19 and he blessed Abram, saying,
“Blessed be Abram by God Most High, Creator of heaven and earth. 20 And praise be to God Most High, who delivered your enemies into your hand.”
Then Abram gave him a tenth of everything.
Melchizedek is not like the other priests of the OT
The priests in the Old Testament, the ones who performed the animal sacrifices at the temple, are Levites…from the line of Levi
But Melchizedek lived 500 years before the very first Levitical priest (Aaron) began to offer sacrifices
Levi himself, the ancestor of the OT priests, wasn’t even born yet when Melchizedek was alive.
No, look closely, and you’ll see the Messiah looks more like Melchizedek than your typical OT priest
Did you notice the 2 things that Melchizedek brought to Abraham in Gen 14?
He brought bread and wine
What does Jesus, the Priest in the order of Melchizedek, bring to the Last Supper?
Bread and Wine
Also, in Genesis 14, Abraham gives Melchizedek a tithe (a tenth) of everything
Like we do with Jesus.
There’s more! If you read the Genealogy of Jesus at the beginning of Matthew, you’ll see that Jesus isn’t even from the tribe of Levi…like the rest of the priests.
He’s from the tribe of Judah…the tribe of the Kings.
And did you notice this about Melchizedek???
Melchizedek isn’t just a priest, he’s a KING.
He’s the Priest King
And that’s why the Messiah will be in his order…
The Messiah won’t just be an ordinary priest, but a Priest King…like Melchizedek
One more thing, we have to point out.
How cool is this?
We’re told that Melchizedek is the King of Salem.
Which, was the old town name for…Jerusalem
He’s the Priest King…of Jerusalem.
HE’S BOTH PRIEST & KING
And so it’s in this order, the order of priest AND king that the Messiah was supposed to one day come.
And that is indeed how Jesus came.
Kings, in those days represented God to the people.
Kings were people of strength.
They rendered judgment
But priests were almost the exact opposite
They were sometimes shepherds who offered sympathy.
They interceded and prayed to God for the people
They served the people.
And most famously, they helped the people experience forgiveness for their sins.
So the King was a figure of strength and judgment and the priest was a figure of love and mercy
Therefore, they were two separate offices.
Kings weren’t priests and priests weren’t kings.
But Psalm 110 tells us that the Messiah will be the Priest King
And you can’t understand who Jesus really is unless you see Him as both.
In fact, if you see Jesus as more of the one than the other, you are probably not correctly understanding who He truly is.
The Bible goes to great lengths to show you both his Kingly characteristics and his Priestly characteristics.
Jesus is the King who calms the storm
….commands the evil spirits out of people with just a word
he rebukes the Pharisees (Calling them whitewashed tombs to their face)
He overturns tables in the temple, his Father’s house.
He’s bold and in charge…speaking often of how He will judge the world.
HE’S THE KING.
And yet he’s our priest.
Interceding to the Father for us
He speaks tenderly to the sick and hurting
When the soldiers come to arrest Him, and a fight breaks out, and one of the soldiers loses His ear, Jesus doesn’t rise to fight, but heals the man’s ear.
He weeps with Martha at the loss of her brother
He gives us access to forgiveness by offering His own life as a perfect sacrifice
And the truth is, if you study Christian history, people tend to worship “Jesus as Priest” or “Jesus as King,” but we struggle to give both their equal due
Sometimes throughout history and culture, Christians have given much time to speaking of God’s power and his future judgment against sin, but have spoken little of God’s compassion and love.
While other times, we’ve given all of our focus and attention to God’s love and mercy, and almost completely forgotten about his hatred of sin…His Kingly wrath and justice.
And the truth is, He is BOTH: He’s the Priest King…in the order of Melchizedek
If you were to draw a continuum, and on one end labeled it King, and the other Priest, and the middle was a perfect balance of the two…
Where would you put your own picture of Jesus?
Of how you think of Him?
If you study the Bible, and you read it every day (and I encourage you to) you’ll find that the true Biblical picture is indeed in the middle.
You are a sinner.
Your sin is deserving of God’s holy judgment.
You’ve sinned against the almighty God.
And for that, He is in his right to punish you.
Justice is not just something He will bring upon those we deem worse than us, but something we deserve for our evil deeds.
Jesus is the King.
Do not mock Him by turning him into a meek Shepherd with no backbone.
He’s the KING!
But He is also your priest.
Who loves you despite your sin and rebellion.
And Jesus loves you so much that He was willing to die in your place on the cross.
And the beautiful truth and conjunction of the Gospel is that by offering Himself as a sacrifice for you, He is your Priest King.
The Kings who offers you salvation and life.
Let me pray
Copyright: David Sorn
Renovation Church in Blaine, MN
You may use this material all you like! We only ask that you do not charge a fee and that you quote the source and not say it is your own.
JANUARY 17, 2021