Judea State in Which We Find Ourselves

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“Living the Acts 1:8 Challenge”1:55: 

'Living the Acts 1:8 Challenge' 1:55 Insert video clip or other illustration here…

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• Jesus’ last words on earth are His first priority for His followers today. A New World View 'It is not for you to know times or periods that the Father has set by His own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth' (Acts 1:7-8, HCSB).

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The Four 'Mission Fields' of Jesus’ Acts 1:8 Challenge: 1. The Ends of the Earth 2. Samaria 3. Judea 4. Jerusalem

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• The presence and power of the Holy Spirit are essential to Christian living and the Church’s mission. A New World View 'I assure you: The one who believes in Me will also do the works that I do. And he will do even greater works than these, because I am going to the Father' (John 14:12, HCSB).

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Five 'Big Ideas' about God’s Mission through the Church: 1. Calling 2. Cultures 3. Church Planting 4. Cooperation 5. Challenges

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Our Church’s Mission in Judea 'For you, brothers, became imitators of God’s churches in Christ Jesus that are in Judea, since you have also suffered the same things from people of your own country, just as they did from the Jews' (1 Thess. 2:14, HCSB).

For today’s church, as for the early church, Judea can be seen as the surrounding state in which people tend to share or adapt to a predominant language, culture and regional identity. : 

For today’s church, as for the early church, Judea can be seen as the surrounding state in which people tend to share or adapt to a predominant language, culture and regional identity.

If Samaritans are seen as those who live relatively near us, but are not like us,” then Judeans can be seen as those who live relatively near us, who in many ways ARE like us. : 

If Samaritans are seen as those who live relatively near us, but are not like us,' then Judeans can be seen as those who live relatively near us, who in many ways ARE like us.

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1. God calls Christians to nearby people who may share regional identity or religious familiarity but not real fellowship with Christ. CALLING principle from Judea 'Now I want you to know, brothers, that the gospel preached by me is not based on a human point of view. For I did not receive it from a human source and I was not taught it, but it came by a revelation from Jesus Christ. For you have heard about my former way of life in Judaism:

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1. God calls Christians to nearby people who may share regional identity or religious familiarity but not real fellowship with Christ. CALLING principle from Judea I persecuted God’s church to an extreme degree and tried to destroy it; and I advanced Judaism beyond many contemporaries among my people, because I was extremely zealous for the traditions of my ancestors.

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1. God calls Christians to nearby people who may share regional identity or religious familiarity but not real fellowship with Christ. CALLING principle from Judea But when God, who from my mother’s womb set me apart and called me by His grace, was pleased to reveal His Son in me, so that I could preach Him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately consult with anyone.

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1. God calls Christians to nearby people who may share regional identity or religious familiarity but not real fellowship with Christ. CALLING principle from Judea I did not go up to Jerusalem to those who had become apostles before me; instead I went to Arabia and came back to Damascus. . . .

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1. God calls Christians to nearby people who may share regional identity or religious familiarity but not real fellowship with Christ. CALLING principle from Judea I remained personally unknown to the Judean churches in Christ; they simply kept hearing: ‘He who formerly persecuted us now preaches the faith he once tried to destroy.’ And they glorified God because of me' (Gal. 1:11-17, 22-24, HCSB).

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CULTURES principle from Judea 'Some men came down from Judea and began to teach the brothers: ‘Unless you are circumcised according to the custom prescribed by Moses, you cannot be saved!’ But after Paul and Barnabas had engaged them in serious argument and debate, they arranged for Paul and Barnabas and some others of them to go up to the apostles and elders in Jerusalem concerning this controversy' (Acts 15:1-2, HCSB). 2. Those depending on works-based religion rather than a grace-based relationship don’t yet understand the gospel.

One great challenge of the Judea mission field is the barrier of “presumed familiarity” that people have with the gospel. : 

One great challenge of the Judea mission field is the barrier of 'presumed familiarity' that people have with the gospel.

Those who were lost in a works-based religion in the first century were likely to declare, “I’m Roman” or “I’m Jewish” just as those lost in the Judea mission field of the church today might declare, “I’m Baptist” or “I’m Catholic.” : 

Those who were lost in a works-based religion in the first century were likely to declare, 'I’m Roman' or 'I’m Jewish' just as those lost in the Judea mission field of the church today might declare, 'I’m Baptist' or 'I’m Catholic.'

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CHURCH PLANTING principle from Judea 'So the church throughout all Judea, Galilee, and Samaria had peace, being built up and walking in the fear of the Lord and in the encouragement of the Holy Spirit, and it increased in numbers' (Acts 9:31, HCSB). 3 Regional support and cooperation help Christians an churches grow stronger and multiply.

The Judea mission field of the first century reminds us that a more homogenous culture and some religious familiarity can provide bridges as well as barriers to the gospel. : 

The Judea mission field of the first century reminds us that a more homogenous culture and some religious familiarity can provide bridges as well as barriers to the gospel.

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COOPERATION principle from Judea 'In those days some prophets came down from Jerusalem to Antioch. Then one of them, named Agabus, stood up and predicted by the Spirit that there would be a severe famine throughout the Roman world. . . . 4. Mission-minded churches mobilize their members to meet human needs in the name of Christ.

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COOPERATION principle from Judea . . . This took place during the time of Claudius. So each of the disciples, according to his ability, determined to send relief to the brothers who lived in Judea. This they did, sending it to the elders by means of Barnabas and Saul' (Acts 11:27-30, HCSB). 4. Mission-minded churches mobilize their members to meet human needs in the name of Christ.

“Crossing the bridge of human need”1:55: 

'Crossing the bridge of human need' 1:55 Insert video clip or other illustration here…

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CHALLENGES principle from Judea 'The following Sabbath almost the whole town assembled to hear the message of the Lord. But when the Jews saw the crowds, they were filled with jealousy and began to oppose what Paul was saying by insulting him. . . . 5. Opposition from religious systems and leaders should be anticipated and met with spiritual resolve.

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CHALLENGES principle from Judea . . . Then Paul and Barnabas boldly said: ‘It was necessary that God’s message be spoken to you first. But since you reject it, and consider yourselves unworthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles! . . . 5. Opposition from religious systems and leaders should be anticipated and met with spiritual resolve.

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CHALLENGES principle from Judea . . . But the Jews incited the religious women of high standing and the leading men of the city. They stirred up persecution against Paul and Barnabas and expelled them from their district. But shaking the dust off their feet against them, they proceeded to Iconium. And the disciples were filled with joy and the Holy Spirit' (Acts 13:44-46; 50-52, HCSB). 5. Opposition from religious systems and leaders should be anticipated and met with spiritual resolve.

Ask yourself . . . • What can I do to help take the gospel to my Judea?• Where in our Judea might God lead our church? : 

Ask yourself . . . • What can I do to help take the gospel to my Judea? • Where in our Judea might God lead our church?

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