8/4/19 – Common Gospel Part IV – Passion and Purity

Exodus 22:21-31 ESV
21 “You shall not wrong a sojourner or oppress him, for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt. 22 You shall not mistreat any widow or fatherless child. 23 If you do mistreat them, and they cry out to me, I will surely hear their cry, 24 and my wrath will burn, and I will kill you with the sword, and your wives shall become widows and your children fatherless. 25 “If you lend money to any of my people with you who is poor, you shall not be like a moneylender to him, and you shall not exact interest from him. 26 If ever you take your neighbor’s cloak in pledge, you shall return it to him before the sun goes down, 27 for that is his only covering, and it is his cloak for his body; in what else shall he sleep? And if he cries to me, I will hear, for I am compassionate. 28 “You shall not revile God, nor curse a ruler of your people. 29 “You shall not delay to offer from the fullness of your harvest and from the outflow of your presses. The firstborn of your sons you shall give to me. 30 You shall do the same with your oxen and with your sheep: seven days it shall be with its mother; on the eighth day you shall give it to me. 31 “You shall be consecrated to me. Therefore you shall not eat any flesh that is torn by beasts in the field; you shall throw it to the dogs.

Continue reading 8/4/19 – Common Gospel Part IV – Passion and Purity

7/28/19 – Common Gospel Part III – Purity and Perversion

Exodus 22:16-20 ESV
16 “If a man seduces a virgin who is not betrothed and lies with her, he shall give the bride-price for her and make her his wife. 17 If her father utterly refuses to give her to him, he shall pay money equal to the bride-price for virgins. 18 “You shall not permit a sorceress to live. 19 “Whoever lies with an animal shall be put to death. 20 “Whoever sacrifices to any god, other than the Lord alone, shall be devoted to destruction.

Continue reading 7/28/19 – Common Gospel Part III – Purity and Perversion

7/21/19 – Common Gospel Part II – Retribution and Restitution

Exodus 21:12-36 ESV
12 “Whoever strikes a man so that he dies shall be put to death. 13 But if he did not lie in wait for him, but God let him fall into his hand, then I will appoint for you a place to which he may flee. 14 But if a man willfully attacks another to kill him by cunning, you shall take him from my altar, that he may die. 15 “Whoever strikes his father or his mother shall be put to death. 16 “Whoever steals a man and sells him, and anyone found in possession of him, shall be put to death. 17 “Whoever curses his father or his mother shall be put to death. 18 “When men quarrel and one strikes the other with a stone or with his fist and the man does not die but takes to his bed, 19 then if the man rises again and walks outdoors with his staff, he who struck him shall be clear; only he shall pay for the loss of his time, and shall have him thoroughly healed. 20 “When a man strikes his slave, male or female, with a rod and the slave dies under his hand, he shall be avenged. 21 But if the slave survives a day or two, he is not to be avenged, for the slave is his money. 22 “When men strive together and hit a pregnant woman, so that her children come out, but there is no harm, the one who hit her shall surely be fined, as the woman’s husband shall impose on him, and he shall pay as the judges determine. 23 But if there is harm, then you shall pay life for life, 24 eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, 25 burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe. 26 “When a man strikes the eye of his slave, male or female, and destroys it, he shall let the slave go free because of his eye. 27 If he knocks out the tooth of his slave, male or female, he shall let the slave go free because of his tooth. 28 “When an ox gores a man or a woman to death, the ox shall be stoned, and its flesh shall not be eaten, but the owner of the ox shall not be liable. 29 But if the ox has been accustomed to gore in the past, and its owner has been warned but has not kept it in, and it kills a man or a woman, the ox shall be stoned, and its owner also shall be put to death. 30 If a ransom is imposed on him, then he shall give for the redemption of his life whatever is imposed on him. 31 If it gores a man’s son or daughter, he shall be dealt with according to this same rule. 32 If the ox gores a slave, male or female, the owner shall give to their master thirty shekels of silver, and the ox shall be stoned. 33 “When a man opens a pit, or when a man digs a pit and does not cover it, and an ox or a donkey falls into it, 34 the owner of the pit shall make restoration. He shall give money to its owner, and the dead beast shall be his. 35 “When one man’s ox butts another’s, so that it dies, then they shall sell the live ox and share its price, and the dead beast also they shall share. 36 Or if it is known that the ox has been accustomed to gore in the past, and its owner has not kept it in, he shall repay ox for ox, and the dead beast shall be his.

Continue reading 7/21/19 – Common Gospel Part II – Retribution and Restitution

7/14/19 – Common Gospel Part I – The Transforming Marks Of Our Master

Exodus 21:1-11 ESV
1 “Now these are the rules that you shall set before them. 2 When you buy a Hebrew slave, he shall serve six years, and in the seventh he shall go out free, for nothing. 3 If he comes in single, he shall go out single; if he comes in married, then his wife shall go out with him. 4 If his master gives him a wife and she bears him sons or daughters, the wife and her children shall be her master’s, and he shall go out alone. 5 But if the slave plainly says, ‘I love my master, my wife, and my children; I will not go out free,’ 6 then his master shall bring him to God, and he shall bring him to the door or the doorpost. And his master shall bore his ear through with an awl, and he shall be his slave forever. 7 “When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she shall not go out as the male slaves do. 8 If she does not please her master, who has designated her for himself, then he shall let her be redeemed. He shall have no right to sell her to a foreign people, since he has broken faith with her. 9 If he designates her for his son, he shall deal with her as with a daughter. 10 If he takes another wife to himself, he shall not diminish her food, her clothing, or her marital rights. 11 And if he does not do these three things for her, she shall go out for nothing, without payment of money.

Continue reading 7/14/19 – Common Gospel Part I – The Transforming Marks Of Our Master

7/7/19 – Lessons In Leading part III – A Polity Of Plurality – The Beauty of Hierarchy And Help

Exodus 18:21-27 ESV

21 Moreover, look for able men from all the people, men who fear God, who are trustworthy and hate a bribe, and place such men over the people as chiefs of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties, and of tens. 22 And let them judge the people at all times. Every great matter they shall bring to you, but any small matter they shall decide themselves. So it will be easier for you, and they will bear the burden with you. 23 If you do this, God will direct you, you will be able to endure, and all this people also will go to their place in peace.” 24 So Moses listened to the voice of his father-in-law and did all that he had said. 25 Moses chose able men out of all Israel and made them heads over the people, chiefs of thousands, of hundreds, of fifties, and of tens. 26 And they judged the people at all times. Any hard case they brought to Moses, but any small matter they decided themselves. 27 Then Moses let his father-in-law depart, and he went away to his own country.

I. A BRIEF DISCUSSION ON POLITY
A. Polity is defined as the branch of ecclesiology (study of the church) that addresses the organizational structure and hierarchy of the church.
B. 3 main forms of polity are: Episcopal, Presbyterian, & Congregational.
C. NJ is a polity mutt because we are a mix of Presbyterian and Congregational polities.
D. Rule by a plurality of some kind would be the most biblical form of polity.

II. THE ROLE OF THE PASTOR IN THE CHURCH
A. The Pastor, while not special, plays a special role in the church:
B. He is involved intimately with the people (v18-19, 22)
C. He is an intercessor for the people (v19)
D. He instructs the people (v20)

III. THE ELECTION OF ELDERS
A. Elders are elected, usually by the people, while pastors are called exclusively by God.
B. Exodus 18 Qualifications to be an Elder:

  1. They had to be men (V21)
  2. They had to be capable (V21)
  3. They had to fear God. (21)
  4. They had to be men of character and incorruptible. (21)
  5. They needed to represent the diversity of the congregation. (v21, 25-26)

IV. ENCOURAGING YOUR ELDERS (Practical Application)
A. Elders serve both the good of the pastor and the congregation. (v18,23)
B. Elders should be empowered by pastors & encouraged by the church. (25-27)

NEXT STEP
1. Jesus became like us, even one of us, in order to chase us down and lead us to follow Him.