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Faithful Words

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Faithful Words

By The Staff

 

FAITHFUL WORDS Dr. Kenneth L. Faught     The Greatest Sermon Ever Preached   “Seeing the crowds, he went up on the mountain, and when he sat down his disciples came to him. And he opened his mouth and taught them, saying,…”(See Matthew 5-7). There have been many great sermons in the history of the Christian church. Peter preached a great sermon on Pentecost. Dr. R. G. Lee preached a famous sermon called “Payday, Someday.” A. J. Gossip, one week after the death of his wife, preached the sermon, “When Life Tumbles In, What Then?” Among John Wesley’s memorable sermons are “Christian Perfection” and “The Means of Grace.” But the greatest sermon ever preached was Jesus’ own “Sermon on the Mount”. This is a great sermon because it tells us what the Christian ought to be. In what would become two of his most memorable statements, Jesus said, “You are the salt of the earth” and “You are the light of the world” (Matthew 5:13-14). Salt is a preservative. It makes its presence known. It adds flavor. In Jesus’ day it was even used as a healing agent. Light shows the way, brightens the world, and is meant to be seen. All these are highly suggestive of what is expected of disciples. This is a great sermon because it tells us how the Christian ought to live. We should value the spiritual over the physical (Matthew 6:19-21). We should not focus upon what is temporary, material, and vulnerable – things that rust can corrupt, moths can destroy, or thieves can steal. Our sights are to be set upon the permanent, the spiritual, the invincible. Material things are not intrinsically evil, but they are not to be allowed to rule our lives. Further, we are to live by the Golden Rule – the “Christian initiative” (Matthew 7:12). Followers of Jesus do not simply refrain from doing harm to others, they initiate acts of kindness, compassion, and hospitality. Jesus also calls us to walk the straight and narrow (Matthew 7:13-14) – to break with the crowd and choose the road less travelled. This is the road that leads to life and peace. This is a great sermon because it tells us clearly why being Christian is so important (Matthew 7:24-27). We are building both a present life and a future destiny. The wise person builds upon a sure foundation. The fool builds upon shifting sands. Regardless of where we build, the rains will come, the winds will blow, the floods will rise. Building upon Christ means that our house will stand – even in the storm. Dr. Faught is Pastor of The LaFollette United Methodist Church