The Rock Covenant Church

The Rock Church Worship Service

God Great And Glorious You Are
Desert Song
Break Every Chain (There is power in the name of Jesus)
(When I am lost, when I am all alone, burdened by my sin and shame, there's one place I can go)
Who You Are (I won't be satisfied, I wont be found alright, til I find who You are)
Oceans (You call me put upon the waters)

Two announcements
First, there’s an all-church meeting after worship tonight
Second, 16th/17th August is our VBS campout

Wrapping up our series on being a spirit filled community with the topic of friendship
I’m going to go all Mr. Rogers on you

The gospel of Jesus Christ does not simply send you deeper into the heart of god than you ever thought you would go, or deeper….bit it sends you deeper into the heart of other brokers and sisters in Christ giving you…with any other human being.

Part of the narrative of travel

After he said these things, he knelt down with all of them to pray. They cried uncontrollably as everyone embraced and kissed Paul. They were especially grieved by his statement that they would never see him again. Then they accompanied him to the ship. After we tore ourselves away from them, we set sail on a straight course to Cos, reaching Rhodes the next day, and then Patara. We found a ship crossing over to Phoenicia, boarded, and put out to sea. We spotted Cyprus, but passed by it on our left. We sailed on to the province of Syria and landed in Tyre, where the ship was to unload its cargo. We found the disciples there and stayed with them for a week. Compelled by the Spirit, they kept telling Paul not to go to Jerusalem. When our time had come to an end, we departed. All of them, including women and children, accompanied us out of town where we knelt on the beach and prayed. We said good-bye to each other, then we boarded the ship and they returned to their homes. Continuing our voyage, we sailed from Tyre and arrived in Ptolemais. We greeted the brothers and sisters there and spent a day with them. The next day we left and came to Caesarea. We went to the house of Philip the evangelist, one of the Seven, and stayed with him. (Acts of the Apostles 20:36-21:8 CEB)

What I do know is that the Holy Spirit testifies to me from city to city that prisons and troubles await me. (Acts of the Apostles 20:23 CEB)

If you desire friendship / meaningful connections with other people, then you are on the right track
Looking back at Genesis, there is something that is not good BEFORE sin enters the picture
The loneliness of man, that ache for friendship
This longing to connect to community
Adam was in perfect paradise, God would come down and walk/commune with Adam
He still needed someone with him to enjoy this paradise
If you want to feel a deeper connection with people, then you are not broken or dysfunctional; you are normal!
There has been recently a trend towards driving
Los Angeles is a very transient area, people always coming and going
Royal Oak, MI was very much the opposite
As you get older, you realize that it takes time to have friends, to connect with other people
Friendship takes time and it takes commitment and sacrificing things
Things are always competing with our schedules
People tend to let you down and hurt you
I’m not sure why, we’re all broken, we’re all sinful, we all hurt one another
Start to withdraw, to not want to do this since it hurts your heart so much
Ed. Note: withdraw and try to fill that need with idols????
The less you need friends, the further you move away from God and your humanity
Jesus is central to us as Christians
He had 12 close friends
3 super close friends
They let Him down ALL THE TIME
He was constantly teaching them and they kept misunderstanding Him
In His greatest hour of need, they bailed on Him, fell asleep on Him
Jesus kept pursuing their hearts
Jesus needed friends, He needed relationship
What is the purpose of creation and redemption?
What is the story of the Bible, from Genesis 1 to Revelation 22?
To put us back in right relationship with Him
If you break it down it’s all about friendship
You’ve got to let yourself need friends
I hear people say that “All I need is God, He’s the only friend I need, that’s the only relationship I need to work on”
I don’t think that’s true
If you have a deep intimacy with God, people will be attracted to you
Not in a dating sense
Acts 2 talks about the early Church and you hear the word koinenea
Koinenea – fellowship, community, sharing
Right in kindergarten, one of the first lessons is about sharing your stuff
Acts 20, they’re sharing their feelings
We also hear about people sharing their stuff; especially their faith
Your community around you, do you talk about the Gospel?
Do you encourage each other?
Hebrews 3:13
The word encourage is translated as preach!
Brothers and sisters!
Do not let your heart get hard, fight it’s bent, it’s natural inclination
I need people around me constantly reminding me of the Gospel, of the goodness of Jesus Christ
21:4 bird’s eye view of dialogue between Paul and some believers, in the Holy Spirit, discouraging him from going to Jerusalem
If we’re talking about theology, there’s going to be tension!
Iron sharpens iron!
There’s this back and forth and finally it ends with “The Lord’s will be done” (Acts 21:14)
We don’t make decisions in a vacuum, we work it out in community
“I sense God leading me here. What do you think?”
Who is we? Paul and the author!
So Luke joins Paul and sails on towards Jerusalem, towards persecution
Why? Because we’re friends. Your life for my life.
With friends leaving our community, it’s important to remember that friendship is forever
At the very least we’ll see them on the other side of redemption
That ache is a good thing
In the future resurrection, it will be fulfilled
In the present, they have to tear themselves away
We hold on to that dream
Came To My Rescue (Falling on my knees in worship, giving all I am to seek your face, Lord all I am is Yours)

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