Thursday, August 6, 2009

Session 3: Leading People to the Prodigal God Tim Keller

Tim Keller - Teaching based on the Prodigal Son story

  • Dirty little secret- pastors are amazed at how spiritually dead so much of their congregation is….
  • So few people do most of the work
  • Prodigal son story was more about the good son… Both sons were about the Father's "things", not the "Father"
  • There's two ways to get the Father's things.... by being really bad and by being really good... both ways can reject God
  • Are we "good" to get our Father's "things"?
  • At the end of the parable, the "bad" son is saved, the "good" son is lost... He was alienated to God because he thought he was so good and had expectations on God
  • Religion says "I obey therefore I'm accepted"... Gospel believers: "Because of what Christ did, I obey"
  • Everything is your's, already done, and you're the light of the one Person who's opinion matters
  • The source of spiritual deadness: Elder brothers that believe through their works they are standing with God based on their performance.... self-centeredness, pride, you don't see the fruits of the Spirit
  • Elder brothers get incredibly angry when things don't go well.... furious at God because they are owed... Instead of believing they're saved by Grace, they ultimately believe they are owed and therefore spiritually dead
  • Elder brothers when criticized either get furious or are crushed... They have such a high personal image of themselves
  • Elder brothers pray for things when going bad... there's no intimacy...
  • If your self image is based on having the right doctrine, you'll look down on those who disagree with you
  • Elder brothers can't forgive... You can't stay angry and bitter at someone unless you feel superior to others...
  • Our churches are filled with elder brothers.... to varying degrees
  • We need to get to new levels of repentence and new levels of rejoicing
  • Until you know how to repent for the reasons for your "right" doing- there's no renewal.
  • The dysfunction of why you do "right" things can be the lid to your spiritual renewal.
  • There was no way to bring the younger brother back without paying the costs out of the elder brother's inheritance.
  • The elder brother was not a brother, he was a Pharisee
  • Christ was the ultimate, right elder brother that paid a high cost to bring us home
  • Church renewal starts with squeezing the bad elder brother squeezed out of us
  • "Ask Jesus into your heart" can be miscontrued to working to be like Jesus sometimes creating a dysfunction elder brother
  • The leader needs to first work this out of his/her own heart.... Ultimately, am I really trying to be good for me? Ugh.
  • Are you overworking in your ministry because of your dysfunctional basis of success based on numbers in your congregation, etc.?
  • Let's believe our Gospel a little more today so we can give our money away more freely...
  • Teaching should be gospel centered, not morally centered
  • Share personal transformation to your leaders
  • Let the leader's spread it through groups or congregation
  • When you have gracious disagreements, people coming to you saying they've been going to church a long time but don't think they've been saved.... you may be seeing some spiritual transformation within your church
  • Book: The Prodigal God

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