Seriously? Enough Quotables From One Sermon? Yep. It was an extremely impressive sermon. I could have made this a two weeker, but decided against it. If you don’t have time for the whole thing, let me recommend skipping down to the last one – It’s my favorite – good content, good family story and funny. And I’ll note again in passing that none of these are in the written transcript.

 Everything I Ever Needed To Know About Children, Racial Harmony And The Gospel I Learned From Pastor John’s Sermon Last Week

 The US Census Bureau says that by 2042 whites will be a minority and non whites will be a minority and since I’m pretty sure that’s the way its going to be in Heaven, I’m okay with that. Just statistically, what’s happened in history and where it’s going today, we just better be okay with that. *** Children, if you can understand what I’m saying, listen up. Here’s my goal is for your parents. Your parents love you really well, they really love you. You know that. Parents love their kids a lot. But parents are always growing in how to do it well. *** So dads: a special focus in this text, indeed in the Bible. Dads have a special responsibility, a special authority, a special role – Mom’s have their own special <role>, but this is special. And dads have a special responsibility for not angering, but rather bringing up in the discipline and instruction of the Lord and the Lord has a lot to say about racial harmony. *** You can teach your kids about race at one year old.  *** Help the children . .. when I say “Help”, “Help”, “Help”, I mean, Model and teach. If you teach but don’t model, you’re a hypocrite. And kids will pick it up really quick. And they’ll be gone, real soon. If you model and think teaching’s not important, you just sacrifice one of the precious means of grace, and that’s not going to go well either. . . . Be what you say . . . I’m assuming that parents have impact when those two come together with authenticity  ***  Most little children are wonderfully free from fretting about their bodies. *** This starts at age . . . 9 months? You don’t start this at age 11 when the crisis happens. Month and after month after month. He made you. He made you. He made you! He’s wise! He’s good. It is not a self esteem issue, it’s a God issue. *** A one year old can get this. Questions! Where’d I come from? God made you. Whoah, how? Challenges! Join the club. *** If you teach a kid he is the end product of animality, he’ll act like an animal. *** It doesn’t save a kid to teach him the golden rule, but you teach him the golden rule! Law-giving usually precedes gospel-hearing. ***  Oh, the gift of parents, who can get this into a little pagan at four years old. *** The issues for our kids are all about God. Everything is about God in these families at Bethlehem. If everything doesn’t relate to God, you don’t get it yet. *** Elbows on the table, No? It relates to God. I could do an exposition of 1 Corinthians 13 – don’t act unseemly – and show you how the Gospel relates to elbows on the table. *** There will come a point when their conscious comes alive, and you need to capture, with great discernment that point. ***  Teach the children that their own sin is uglier than anybody they think is physically unattractive. Sin is not a funny blunder. Sin is not a noble flaw. ***  If our children are ever to grasp the gospel, they must grasp this about themselves. And we parents must feel it about ourselves first… There will be a flavor. Dad has authority in this family but it is a broken hearted authority. It’s a humble authority. It is a ready-to-admit-wrong authority ,an ask-forgiveness-from-a-five-year-old authority. *** Our children will never cherish the gospel if they aren’t sickened by their own sinfulness. They need to learn they don’t just do bad things, they’re bad. And I know there are a lot of people who say you should never ever say that to a child. “Just tell them they did a bad thing. Don’t say he’s bad.” Sins don’t come out of nowhere. ***  . . . I’m corrupt, I’m proud, I’m selfish, I am this way. And until I own this, the Gospel won’t land with power. I will always be healed lightly. *** And then you gently, lovingly help your kid get this. It doesn’t damn them, I promise, you it doesn’t damn them. It frees them to get the gospel. It makes the gospel the sweetest thing in the world. *** So now, we tell them and we tell them a thousand times! When God sent his son into the world, he was demonstrating his infinite love for you! In your sin! In spite of your sin! ***  Knowing Christ Jesus for the Christian is more valuable than anything. Teach them that. That is a work of the Holy Spirit in their life. You cannot make that happen. But you can tell them it’s true. And pray night and day.

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Number 8, the last one. Teach the children to love others who are different from them – I’m going to do it this way: Last night, I went into Talitha’s room. She said “Are you going to say that at church?” I said “Probably.” She went, “Ohhh!” She didn’t say no! So she’s not here. She’ll be here tomorrow morning and I’ll ask her tomorrow morning again. So I sat down on the bed like I always do – she’s fourteen – with my hand on her head and I blessed her and sang my little song and I said, “Can I ask you a question? This is the last point in the sermon tomorrow and I want to see if you get this. Okay, finish this sentence for me, Talitha: ‘The Children – you – should love people different from yourselves not in order to be accepted by God, but because. . . ‘ and I stopped, and she said “because . . . I am accepted by God?” I just came out of my chair! Yes! Yes! Yes! She thought that was so funny. Just like you did. I tell you, you could not pay me a million dollars for that moment. That’s the gospel. All Daddy’s do’s – Do this! Do this! What are they? Ways to get God on your side?  And she knows: No. . . . He’s on my side because of Jesus.

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