No More Rules
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ConnectUs Church Audio Podcast
ConnectUs Church Audio Podcast

Episode 13 · 2 years ago

No More Rules

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

Do rules help you live a better life or do they frustrate you? Whether you like to keep the rules or not, every new rule is an additional burden to navigate. There has to be something better.

... glad that you're going to be joining us for this series where we're going to explore this amazing, abundant life that Jesus has for us. So, whether you're a rule breaker or a rule keeper, I believe that God has something more for you and I'm excited to be your guide and help you discover all that God has for you. So I wanted to do this series right now because I believe people are looking for what this life is really all about. We wake up and there's new rules every single day. There's new regulations, new mandates, new laws, and it seems like everywhere we go, a grocery store, a doctor's office, a school and even church, we're walking into somewhere that has constantly changing rules and that is so draining. But when...

...we're faced with these rules, we kind of naturally respond in one of two ways. The first way is there's there's something inside of us that like wants to do what we're told, wants to follow the rules. We're pretty good at fallowing the rule to you know where we just we just do it. We just want to do it. But then there's some of you that when a new rule comes about, that there's just something inside of you that says no, no way, no, I could not do that. Or maybe it's I don't care, I don't really care at all, or I just I just will never see myself doing that. There's something inside of us that responds in this way when we find a new set of rules, and so we naturally break down into being rule keepers and rule breakers, and I'm excited...

...to explore this a lot more with you in this series and and help you identify which identity you have and the positives and negatives that come with ex responding this way to rules. And so when we are presented with rules, which happens every single day, we respond to them in these different ways. And so, whether these rules are written down or or not written down, or maybe they're just rules that exist because of the country or the part of the world that we live in, we can't escape rules and they have a very important purpose. They they organize society and they keep us safe when we're driving, so we're driving on the right side of the road, or or when we're walking on the sidewalk, people don't come and attack us, or or...

...do they do the rules really do these things? See, think about this with me for a minute. Do Rules make people drive on the right side of the road and drive safely? No, not really. See what are rules supposed to do? And people don't follow them when they don't obey the rules, unfortunately, rules don't have anything to do when people don't obey them. Rules rely on authorities to enforce the rules and to enforce the consequences that happen as a result of not keeping the rules, and so this is why people end up in jail. The authorities have come and and moved you to a place where they are limiting the amount of rules that you can break. They're putting you in a small place, maybe with a small amount of people...

...or by yourself, and with limited resources. And this is what makes rules so frustrating. They leave you wanting more. You know, there's got to be more to life then just trying to follow the rules or trying not to get caught when you break the rules, and I think this is what people find so frustrating about religion. Religion and rules seem to go hand in hand, and so many people think, oh, I can't go to church because, man, that church has too many rules, or maybe they think if I walk into a church building like that, guy's just going to strike me that right right then and there. And I don't want to make light of those feelings or thoughts because they're very, very real. But see, on one hand there's some of us that we could never go to church, we can never believe in God because there is no way God could accept someone like...

...me who's broken so many rules. There's never a possibility that God could welcome me because of what I've done. But then there's some of us on the other hand, that we're good at keeping the rules and we've kept a lot of rules in our lifetime and as a result of that, life is great, things are good, you are successful, and why throw God on top of all of that? Life's good right now. This God things just going to complicate things. So, because of that, why would I sign up for a religious belief that put more rules on my life? You know, you get a you get a rule book, you get someone to read you the rules and they say something like this, Hey, you want to sign up for some for religion? Yeah, okay, so, okay, sir, ma'am, today is today that you're signing up to live out these rules. Are you ready to hear them? Here we go, be nice,...

...give money to the poor, pray, go to a gathering, attend Sunday school, give did I say already? Not Curse, don't drink, don't smoke, don't dance, don't listen to the type of music, don't stand, don't sit, don't be a hypocrite. This sounds horrible. Plus, who gets to the side what these rules are? Does God say something and get to decide? What about the people that wrote the Bible? How about the people that are leaders in the church, the pastors? Do they get to say on what the rules are? See, what if you could live a life with no rules? What would your life look like? What if you could live a life where you weren't always worrying about what rule you just...

...might have broken, but instead you were worrying about how you can make a difference in this world? And what if you could live a life that followed a deeper set of rules that made you never think about rules again? And what if this was the life that Jesus has come to offer the world, come to offer you and me? So here are some things that the apostle Paul wrote down about this life that Jesus has come to offer us. He...

...says this. He says the thief's purpose is to steal, kill and destroy, but my purpose is to give them a rich, satisfying life. In these verses, Jesus is recorded as saying this illustration that there's a sheep pen and and that he, Jesus, was the gate. So the way the sheep get into the pen is through Jesus. It's he is, the way, he is the gate into the sheep pen. And then he takes it a step further and says that not only is is he the way that people get into this place where they're taking care of where there's life, but that he is the Good Shepherd. He's not just some hired hand guy that's there because your pain them to be there and and he's out of there the second difficulty and challenge comes and or a threat comes. No, this is the Good Shepherd. Jesus is the Good Shepherd that takes care of his sheep and...

...wants to provide them and an amazing, amazing life. And Judas goes so far to say that he's gonna lay his life down for his sheep. He's going to die for his sheep so that they could experience real, real life. This is your good shepherd. and Jesus said that there's some sheep that are not yet in his fold and he went to go sit down at a well next to one of them and he said to her, if you only knew the gift God has for you and who you're speaking to, you would ask me and I would give you living water. See, there's something different about Jesus that he satisfies. Like you, don't leave Jesus wanting more, but we leave everything else in life wanting more. You know, how much money do you need to be happy? Probably more. How many friends do you need to be happy? Probably more. How much influence do you need...

...to feel successful and be happy? Probably more. See, Jesus has come to give a satisfying life where you don't need more, and the way you get this kind of life is through Jesus. He says this about himself. He says I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the father except through me. See, in this conversation Jesus is is having this conversation with the disciples, and the disciples are wondering what Jesus, where you going? You talk about going somewhere after you die, like we want to follow you there, and just think about that for a second. A conversation about where you're going after you die very interesting. But the disciples want to know and Jesus is like, well, you can know, you can get there. It's through me, it's because of me, it's through me. I am the way to get there, I am the life.

So one more verse, and this one is really interesting. See, Jesus is popular, he's doing all these amazing things and people are starting to follow him. He's getting large crowds of people to follow him and and as is teaching. Man, he's a great, great teacher, and then he starts talking about something that I think the disciples that were following him as just kind of looked at each other and said, I can't believe he's saying this right now. He started to saying some weird things and it's like the disciples like, Jesus, don't, don't tell him this one. You'RE gonna YOU'RE gonna lose everybody, you're gonna you're going to make a not show up anymore. Don't you want them to follow you? Don't you want them to listen to your teaching, don't tell him this one. But jus says something pretty remarkable in these words that are recorded in John. He says that he was the living bread that came down from heaven. Anyone who eats the spread will...

...live forever, and this bread, which I will offer so the world may live, is my flesh. So Jesus compared himself to what his audience of the day new was very familiar with the Old Testament, the Hebrew scriptures, when when they Israelites, were wandering in the Wilderness, God fed them from with Manna from heaven, bread from heaven. and Jesus is like, I'm the better version of that. I am that, I am the bread that has come from heaven. And then he said something pretty remarkable. He said, if you eat this bread, you will live forever. Jesus, you're saying, if you eat your flesh, I will live forever. I told you it's strange, but it gets weirder. Jesus then says if you drink my blood, then you can live forever. So what is Jesus saying here? He's saying you need more of me in order to have life, in...

...order to have life, you need more of me. So eat my flesh, drink my blood, be one with me. And this all makes sense then when Jesus dies on the Cross and he physically gives his life, his flash and his blood for you in your place, so that you could have life, eternal life, a rich, satisfying life. So notice, no rules, just life. No rules, just true life through the person and the work of Jesus. So I can't wait to continue in this series with you. I believe God is going to use it to unlock life inside of you like you've never experienced it before, and you aren't going to let rules get in the way of experiencing this amazing life. Will see you next time.

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