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Stay in the City

By Dwayne Cline/ February 26, 2012

Series  Christian Discipleship

Context  Westminster Chapel Toronto

Topic  Mission Of God

Contrary to the popular sentiment of the Jews exiled in Babylon, God commands them to settle down in the city and to seek its peace.

Scripture: Isaiah 58; Jeremiah 29

Sermon Notes:

  1. Contrary to the popular sentiment of the Jews exiled in Babylon, God commands them to settle down in the city and to seek its peace.
  2. God has placed Cline's church in a poor area of Hamilton to be a light in a place of incredible darkness, and to bless the city in Jesus' name.
  3. God, through Jeremiah, calls the exiles to raise their kids in the city.
  4. What's most important to raising godly kids is to set a consistent example of loving the Lord, and to teach them the Word.
  5. In seeking the peace and prosperity of the wicked city in which they live, God's people themselves will find peace.
  6. Shalom (peace) means a total flourishing in every dimension.
  7. The circumstances into which we are born has a huge impact on our lives, and yet God's transforming grace mends broken lives.
  8. As God was concerned about Nineveh, so He's calling us to be concerned about the millions in Toronto who don't know their right hand from their left.
  9. We seek the peace of the city by praying for, blessing, and working with:
  10. the institutions of the city
  11. the politicians of the city
  12. the local businesses of the city
  13. the poor and marginalized in the city
  14. the soul of the city
  15. We offer help boldly and believingly, in light of eternity's significance.
  16. God calls us to be generous to the poor (Deuteronomy 15:7-9).
  17. Because our identity is in Jesus, therefore we are able bring reconciliation and peace to the diverse groups in the city.
  18. We often get sucked into the lies of Satan: we don't want to move into a poor area; we don't want to take risks.
  19. God says of the false prophets: I have not sent you.
  20. If a person has grasped the truth of God, he'll do justice. Grace will make you just. -Tim Keller
  21. God gives us hope and a future in the context of living in a wicked city and blessing it.
  22. We're not alone; God Almighty walks along side us and He will grant us a hope and a future.
  23. All of us deserve hell; if we don't believe that, how can we possibly be Christians?
  24. God in Christ cloaked His deity in humanity and bore the wrath of God for our sins because that was the only way we could be freed from the power of sin and reconciled to God for all eternity.
  25. Jesus didn't say “You're not worth it,” “I don't want to go through the pain,” “I don't want to suffer.”
  26. As we encounter challenges and opposition in ministry, remember that our God sits on the throne.

Application Questions:

  1. What is the context of Jeremiah 29 and what applications can we draw from this passage for the church in Toronto in 2012?
  2. List the common attitudes and arguments that lead people to move away from the city?
  3. How is the ministry of the church affected when the congregation lives in the immediate community?
  4. What are some practical and specific ways that we can seek the peace of Toronto?
  5. What are the essential conditions necessary for raising godly kids?
  6. Give biblical evidence of God's concern for the people of wicked cities.
  7. Am I seeking the peace and prosperity of the city, or am I seeking the peace and prosperity of myself, my family, my cultural group?
  8. Do my bank statements show that I'm a kingdom builder, where Jesus is first? Are we generous with the wealth God has entrusted to us?
  9. Why must we do our acts of justice and compassion “in Jesus' name”?

Sermon Notes