Are you worth anything, anything at all? What’s your value? In fact, what is your value and worth to you? The worst disparaging remark about a person’s value or worth is when someone says to them ‘that you’re a waste of skin’.
It has been estimated that if you sold your bone marrow, your lungs and DNA and that you sold all of your organs and skin you might get on the black market 45 million dollars (USD). But if you just distilled your body down to just the minerals in it the value would be about $4.50. Are you worth anything?
Over the next 5 weeks we are going to cover the topic CREATED FOR SIGNIFICANCE and you are significant, you were created with significance each and every one of you.
This week on Facebook there was a posting by a young person which read:
IF I WERE GONE WOULD ANYBODY MISS ME? I looked for it later and it was gone. A cry for significance and worth for sure.
We want to cover 5 topics that rotate around you being created for significance
And over the next 5 Sundays there will be 4 different speakers, Kevin, Ben, Norm and I and we’ll cover topics like:
What’s my purpose?
What matters to God?
What does God think of me?
How to invest your one and only life.
A look at the life to come.
Today is the question -What is my purpose? Or -Why am I here?
Everybody asks 3 questions; Where did I come from, why am I here and where am I going?
You see if you have significance, and you do, then there is a reason for you to be, to exist and if you have significance than there must be a purpose for your life.
The Bible declares over and over again that you have significance, you were created in God’s image and that there is a purpose for your life. These 2 elements of significance and purpose are linked together and they are linked to God.
If you show up for this entire series, I guarantee you will better understand the heart of our church, and God’s intentions for your life as well.
There is a single scene happening at a Pharisee’s house in Luke 14 (it’s a banquet/party at a Pharisee’s house) and from that scene several story lines occur over a short time period. I want to look at 2 of the story lines.
Luke 14 (NIV)
1 One Sabbath, when Jesus went to eat in the house of a prominent Pharisee, he was being carefully watched. 2 There in front of him was a man suffering from abnormal swelling of his body (dropsy or edema). 3 Jesus asked the Pharisees and experts in the law, “Is it lawful to heal on the Sabbath or not?” 4 But they remained silent. So taking hold of the man, he healed him and sent him on his way.
5 Then he asked them, “If one of you has a child or an ox that falls into a well on the Sabbath day, will you not immediately pull it out?” 6 And they had nothing to say.
Here’s what I read there. [Read Luke 14:1–6.]
Jesus looks at all the fellows, looks down at this guy in need, and says, “Okay, I get it. You brought me here as a test. You all believe that it’s wrong to do any kind of work on the Sabbath, including healing.” He’s angry, because these guys obviously don’t care one whit about the dropsy guy (edema) or his condition. They don’t care that he’s dying, or that his family will soon be without a father. They don’t care about the pain he’s in or the embarrassment he’s now suffering as he stands in front of them all. He’s just an object to be used to get at Jesus.
So Jesus says, “Listen, I know what you’re all thinking. You all believe that it’s a sin to do good on the Sabbath. But you do good on the Sabbath if it suits your purposes. If your son falls in a well, you don’t say, ‘Oh, sorry, son, hope you can tread water down there until tomorrow! I can’t pull you out today because that would be work, and you know, God doesn’t like it when we do work on the Sabbath!’”
“Come on, guys, if your ox stumbles into a hole on a Sabbath day, you go get your pulleys and wenches and you call all the neighbors to come heft him out because you don’t want it to suffer and because your economic prosperity is at stake. So don’t tell me that I should keep from healing this guy on a day like today. God is far more interested in loving people than keeping rules.”
We find ourselves saying “Yea, go get ‘em Jesus, give it to them”
But listen and see what is happening. Does not God’s Holy Spirit say to you and me, Enter the scene and “Find yourself in this story.” “Find yourself in this picture.”
Well, instantly I think, “I’m certainly not Jesus.” He was perfect, and I am far from that.
I wondered for a second if I was the sick guy. But I quickly reasoned that I wasn’t that guy, either. I don’t feel like I am about to die. And since there were only three kinds of people in the picture, I had to take a careful look at the ring of robed guys, the Pharisees. These guys were Pharisees. They were educated, devoutly spiritual types who held positions of responsibility within the religious community. They had each spent years reading the Old Testament, the Bible of their day, and knew all of its rules and regulations, mostly by heart. They tried their best to live their lives by those laws.
As I looked at that picture, I asked myself, “Is this you; are you are a Pharisee.” The same goes for you- “Is this you; are you are a Pharisee.”
I have to admit I can be like a Pharisee. I was a religious leader. I studied the book, knew the rules, and tried my best to abide by them. I even knew the rules that weren’t in the book, like don’t smoke, drink, dance, chew, or go with girls that do.
Many of us have gone to church for many years and we can become religious instead of relational (Christianity is a relationship with God not a set of rules) and we can become callous to those around us like the dropsy guy, the needy, those without faith and hope, those who need Jesus more than anything else in their life
What’s my purpose? Certainly not to be like the Pharisees, callous, religious, full of cold rules. No, no, no. My purpose in life is to be in a God relationship first and to help all those around me come into a God relationship too. That’s my heart to have a God relationship and to invite/help all those around me to come to the same banquet with Jesus.
Did I say banquet, you can also call it a party were we celebrate with Jesus.
Speaking of this the 2nd scene in this story from Luke 14 goes like this:
16 Jesus replied: “A certain man was preparing a great banquet and invited many guests. 17 At the time of the banquet he sent his servant to tell those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’ (2nd invitation)
18 “But they all alike began to make excuses. The first said, ‘I have just bought a field, and I must go and see it. Please excuse me.’ (Liar)
19 “Another said, ‘I have just bought five yoke of oxen, and I’m on my way to try them out. Please excuse me.’ (Liar)
20 “Still another said, ‘I just got married, so I can’t come.’ (Liar)
21 “The servant came back and reported this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and ordered his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the town and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind and the lame.’ (all the needy, whatever type of need à invite them).
22 “‘Sir,’ the servant said, ‘what you ordered has been done, but there is still room.’
23 “Then the master told his servant, ‘Go out to the roads and country lanes and compel them to come in, so that my house will be full (the non-Jewish [us], the needy, even the outcast). 24 I tell you, not one of those who were invited will get a taste of my banquet.’”
My purpose is to INVITE EVERYONE TO THE PARTY
As I read this my heart burned within me all the more, I’m a servant of God I need to invite everyone to the banquet, beg people to come to the party with Jesus. Just bring them. Whether its friends, neighbors, people at work or school, people across the street, just invite them, just bring them. Let’s invite more than we have ever invited before
It’s easy to become a Pharisee; to get to the place in your life where you think you know what the rules are and then start living as if the rules matter more than people do. It’s easy to get fuzzy on the purpose of life. God wants outsiders invited to his banquet and we are the ones to invite.
Friends, you were created for significance, therefore you have purpose. And according to Jesus, that significance, that purpose is tied into the very plan and heart of God. First, you come to the banquet with Jesus (you have a relationship with Jesus) and then invite everyone you can to the banquet. Amen.