Church Write-Up: Luke 14:7-11; Billions and Billions of People

Here are some items from last Sunday’s church service:

A. The pastor preached about Luke 14:7-11. Jesus exhorts his disciples to take the lower seats rather than the places of honor. If they take a place of honor, they may be humiliated after the host tells them to move and make way for someone more important. If they take a lower seat, however, the host may tell them to move up.

The pastor asked if Jesus cares about where people sit. For one, Luke 14:7-11 comes across as law, a way to manipulate God to exalt us. Second, things do not always work out that way. The host may see us in the lower seat and say, “Oh, I’m glad you found a place to sit,” rather than telling us to move up.

The pastor interpreted this passage in light of the Gospel. Like the person Jesus healed of dropsy in the preceding pericope, we are beggars before God. Jesus, however, through his saving work, tells us to move up to a position of honor.

B. The church started a Sunday school class on death. It was sad to hear people’s stories about that. One elder shared that, back when he was a teenager, his father committed suicide.

The teachers said that death did not exist in Eden, for it is the result of sin. Suppose, though, that Adam and Eve did not sin. Would nobody have died, ever? How would the world sustain billions and billions of people? Someone suggested that God could have taken some people up to heaven, as God did with Enoch and Elijah. I recall Abraham Kuyper making a similar point: had Adam and Eve not sinned, God eventually would have taken them to heaven. The point of their creation was fellowship with God.

There will be no Sunday school class next week because it will be “Rally Sunday.” The traditional and contemporary services will be meeting at the same time.

About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting. I have degrees in fields of religious studies. I have an M.Phil. in the History of Biblical Interpretation from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. I also have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University.
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