Sermon Quotes: "A Gospel That Divides"

“Although there have been several accounts of persecution so far in Luke’s narrative, the pastoral application in these verses functions to challenge readers more directly about this issue than ever before.” David Peterson

“The cross is a sword because its message is not the message that insurrectionists want to hear. Who wants to hear that he is sinful at the core of his being? And who wants to hear that in Jesus death God has opened the gates of freedom and peace for
all insurrectionists, if and only if they stop their insurrection? And who then wants to hear that God won’t permit such insurrection to go unchallenged forever-that judgment awaits those who will not accept this peace treaty from the Prince of Peace?” Douglas O’ Donnell

“Let me be clear here: if you come home after being born again, and you tell your dear mother how foolish she is for not believing in Jesus and that you see the light and she doesn’t…it is not the cross that is offensive, but you. Many Christians today are needlessly offensive, committing great blunders and stirring up much opposition which might have been avoided by the little prudence and exercise of judgment. But if your heart has indeed been changed, and your actions follow, and in time you begin to demonstrate Christian humility in witness in words and in deeds to your dear mother, and then, if she rejects the gospel, the cross of peace for her has, as Jesus predicted become a sword of division between you and her.” Douglas O’ Donnell

“He knew that the message of the cross was ‘foolishness’ to some and ‘a stumbling block’ to others, because it undermines self- righteousness and challenges self-indulgence. So whenever the gospel is faithfully preached, it arouses opposition, often contempt, and sometimes ridicule.” John Stott

“Those who seek selective solidarity with our cultured despisers on the woke fixations of the day will find their strategy inherently unstable. We cannot pick and choose moral priorities. The Christian gospel is first and foremost a judgment on this world, not
a selective affirmation of it in the service of winning friends and influencing people. Christians should not expect to be warmly embraced by the world, nor even tolerated. In John 15, Christ tells his disciples: ‘If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you.’ Christianity tells the world what it does not wish to hear. We should not expect to be embraced by those who thoughts and deeds contradict the truths of our faith. Nor should we seek to make our faith more palatable, lest the salt lose its savor.” Carl Trueman

“We ought to pursue the course of action that would best serve the gospel.” John Calvin

“In the New Testament, ‘grace’ is a word of central importance-the keyword, in fact, of Christianity. Grace is what the New Testament is about…The thought of grace is the key that unlocks the New Testament; and it is the only key that does so. However well we may know the wording of the New Testament, we cannot get inside its meaning till we know something of what grace is…No need in Christendom is more urgent that the need for a renewed awareness of what the grace of God really is…In the New Testament, grace means God’s love in action toward people who merited the opposite of love. Grace means God moving heaven and earth to save sinners who could not lift a finger to save themselves. Grace means God sending his only Son to the cross to descend into hell so that we guilty ones might be reconciled to God and received into heaven. ‘God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.’ (2 Cor. 5:21).” J.I. Packer