Big Apple Chapel is a New Testament based church in New York City, modeled after the pattern of the early church, with a strong emphasis on following Christ as a community of His disciples.

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    New York, NY
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BAC Sermons

Is Heaven a Capitalistic or Communistic Economy?

2013-04-07 Mt 19-20



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Context 1Cor 15; Mt 18:1 disciples came to Jesus, saying, "Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?" 3 "Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.4 Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Mt 19:12 there are eunuchs who have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven's sake. He who is able to accept it, let him accept it." 14  said, "Let the little children come to Me, and do not forbid them; for of such is the kingdom of heaven (18:1)."

I. We Inherit our Reward of Eternal Life (dominion of The Age Mt 7:14; 18:8) by Faithfully Following Jesus

Mt 19:16  "Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?" 17 "Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life (Dt 30:15), keep the commandments. (not murder...shall love your neighbor as yourself) 
21a If you want to be perfect...sell...give...follow Col 3:24 See Section 2.4 of the Survey of Rewards on Truthbase.net)
21b you will have treasure in heaven.
23 it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.
24 a rich man to enter the kingdom of God."
25 Who then can be saved?(justified/sanctified/glorified) [cf Luke 10:25-28 inherit eternal life = live; “do this and you will live”]

27 Then Peter answered and said to Him, "See, we have left all and followed You. Therefore what shall we have?" 28 So Jesus said to them, "Assuredly I say to you, that in the regeneration, when the Son of Man sits on the throne of His glory, you who have followed Me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
29 And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My name's sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and inherit eternal life (dominion of The Age).

II. First=greatest; Last=least \ differential positions/rewards in the Kingdom  (cf Mt 5:12,19,26; 6:x7;10:41; 24:25; 25:21)

Mt 16:24 disciples, "If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. 25 whoever desires to save his life/soul will lose it, but whoever loses his life/soul for My sake will find it. 26 For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? give in exchange for his soul? 27  the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works. 2Cor 5:10
19:30 But many who are first will be last, and the last first.
Mt 20:1 "For the kingdom of the heaven(s) is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard. 2 Now when he had agreed with the laborers for a denarius a day, he sent them into his vineyard. 7 They said to him, 'Because no one hired us.' He said to them, 'You also go into the vineyard, and whatever is right you will receive.' 8 "So when evening had come, the owner of the vineyard said to his steward, 'Call the laborers and give them their wages, beginning with the last to the first.' 10 But when the first came, they supposed that they would receive more; and they likewise received each a denarius.
11 And when they had received it, they complained against the landowner, 12 saying, 'These last men have worked only one hour, and you made them equal to us who have borne the burden and the heat of the day.' 13 But he answered one of them and said, 'Friend, I am doing you no wrong. Did you not agree with me for a denarius? 14 Take what is yours and go your way. I wish to give to this last man the same as to you. 15 Is it not lawful for me to do what I wish with my own things? Or is your eye evil because I am good?'
20:16a So the last will be first, and the first last.

20:16b For many are called/invited, but few chosen/choice/select." (cf 22:14 guest at wedding feast)  [Lk 23:35 of Christ]

III. The Route to Glory is along the Road of Sacrificial Service

21 And He said to her, "What do you wish?" She said to Him, "Grant that these two sons of mine may sit, one on Your right hand, the other on the left, in Your kingdom." 23 So He said to them, "You will indeed drink My cup, and be baptized with the baptism that I am baptized with; but to sit on My right hand and on My left is not Mine to give, but it is for those for whom it is prepared by My Father." 25 But Jesus called them to Himself and said, "You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and those who are great exercise authority over them. 26 Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. 27 And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave ---28 just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many."

IV. From DTB on Lk 17:21;7-11 The servant who just does the minimum expected gets a minimum benefit. In Luke 12:37-38 and 42-44 (which precedes the unprofitable servant passage of last post), Jesus clearly taught that the master would reward, bless, and serve His faithful servants. So what changed? In chapter 12 the servants were eagerly watching and awaiting the master's return. Here, they are more like the prodigal's older brother, just punching the time clock without embracing the Father's heart. If the emphasis is on just obeying commands (like the Pharisees), they are unworthy of greater reward. If they love God wholeheartedly and their neighbor correspondingly, and want to see God's glory manifested on earth, they will be worth of greater reward (as chapter 19 clearly teaches).

Questions for Reflection/Discussion/Response:
1. Why do people go into the lake of fire rather than heaven? What does Jesus have to do with it? What does one have to believe?
2. What if a person has faith in God's provision, but doesn't obey or work very well? Can a person be forgiven yet not follow Jesus? Destiny?
3. If there are some who are great and some who are least in the kingdom, what determines one's status/reward (power/pleasure/possessions)?
4. Why would people ignore 100 verses that clearly teach individual responsibility and subsequent reward to twist a handful to doubt/deny it?
5. What are you doing (or will you do) to ensure that you hear “Well done, good and faithful servant; enter into the joy of your Lord!”