Out of This World Thinking
Part 2 of a Series Entitled “A New Normal"
3 Thus says the Lord, ‘I will return to Zion and will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem. Then Jerusalem will be called the City of Truth, and the mountain of the Lord of hosts will be called the Holy Mountain.’ 4 Thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘Old men and old women will again sit in the streets of Jerusalem, each man with his staff in his hand because of age. 5 And the streets of the city will be filled with boys and girls playing in its streets.’ 6 Thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘If it is too difficult in the sight of the remnant of this people in those days, will it also be too difficult in My sight?’ declares the Lord of hosts. 7 Thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘Behold, I am going to save My people from the land of the east and from the land of the west; 8 and I will bring them back and they will live in the midst of Jerusalem; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God in truth and righteousness.’ 9 “Thus says the Lord of hosts, ‘Let your hands be strong, you who are listening in these days to these words from the mouth of the prophets, those who spoke in the day that the foundation of the house of the Lord of hosts was laid, to the end that the temple might be built. 10 For before those days there was no wage for man or any wage for animal; and for him who went out or came in there was no peace because of his enemies, and I set all men one against another. 11 But now I will not treat the remnant of this people as in the former days,’ declares the Lord of hosts. 12 ‘For there will be peace for the seed: the vine will yield its fruit, the land will yield its produce and the heavens will give their dew; and I will cause the remnant of this people to inherit all these things. 13 It will come about that just as you were a curse among the nations, O house of Judah and house of Israel, so I will save you that you may become a blessing. Do not fear; let your hands be strong.’ - Zechariah 8:3-13 (NASB)
The BIG Idea
God remembers us and will be our Provider and Sustainer. God has already won the battle for eternity! God will always keep the promises of God. All we need to do is have enough faith to believe it. We can find hope for our future by trusting that God remembers us and will be our Provider and Sustainer.
Zechariah’s name means “one whom YHWH (Yahweh) remembers.” He is both priest and prophet and encourages the people by painting a detailed picture of their hopeful future by comparing with the current destruction of the Temple.
- Our minds and hearts sometimes struggle to see past what our eyes see.
ILLUSTRATION: The Space Race of the 1950s and 1960s
- God is passionate for God’s people – even when we have failed God.
◦ God is passionate about living in us.
I will also walk among you and be your God, and you shall be My people. – Leviticus 26:12 (NASB)
Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My Word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make our abode with him.” – John 14:23 (NASB)
For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst. - Matthew 18:20 (NASB)
Are we as passionate about God living in us and among us as God is?
◦ God is passionate about our obedience.
He who withholds his rod hates his son, but he who loves him disciplines him diligently. - Proverbs 13:24 (NASB)
Why is God passionate about this? Because obedience brings blessings and disobedience brings disaster.
ILLUSTRATION: The way we view the seatbelt laws.
◦ God is passionate about our joy.
These things I have spoken to you so that My joy may be in you, and that your joy may be made full. – John 15:11 (NASB)
Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. – Hebrews 12:2 (NASB)
◦ God is passionate about our evangelism.
18 And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” – Matthew 28:18-20 (NASB)
- When Jesus was born, the waiting was over. God had won!
Questions for Reflection
Am I as passionate about God living in me and among my community as God is?
Do I view obedience as a way to bring joy or as a way of following the rules?
If Jesus came all the way from His throne in Heaven to die for ALL sinners, do I need to be willing to do all that I can to reach them for Him and His Kingdom?
Do I realize daily that Jesus has already been won the battle for eternity and that the challenges of this temporary life are indeed temporary?