Celebrating our School Ministry 1962 – 2008 Forty-six years of blessings
“Train up a child in the way he shall go, and when he is old, he shall not depart from it” Proverbs 22:6
Is God fair? What passes for “fair” among people? Nations go to war People are characterized by groups... Race Race Sex Sex Age Age “looks” “looks”
People are characterized by ideas and values Prejudice – is to pre-judge To be disposed either for or against It is both a good and a bad thing It comes down to what is “fair”
In the American body-politic “fair” has come to mean – treating everyone the same
In the mind of God – “fair” is treating each person as their actions deserve
Ezekiel 18:1-4, 25-32 The word of the Lord came to me: “What do you people mean by quoting this proverb about the land of Israel: ‘The fathers eat sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge’?
Clichés Sour grapes and sharp teeth Sour grapes and sharp teeth You know how men \ women are You know how men \ women are Look at the family he came from Look at the family he came from Poverty breeds ignorance and crime Poverty breeds ignorance and crime Clichés often try to simplified complex human behaviors with general observations We may be either setting people up for failure or excusing their behavior
“As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign Lord, you will no longer quote this proverb in Israel. For every living soul belongs to me, the father as well as the son—both alike belong to me. The soul who sins is the one who will die.” “As surely as I live, declares the Sovereign Lord, you will no longer quote this proverb in Israel. For every living soul belongs to me, the father as well as the son—both alike belong to me. The soul who sins is the one who will die.”
God does not judge by groupings – Children are not held responsible for their parents’ failures Parents are not punished for the actions of their children A husband cannot get to heaven on his wife’s faith We each stand or fall before the Creator on our own
Ezekiel 18:25-29 Yet you say, “The way of the Lord is not just”...
Ezekiel 18:30-32 “Therefore, O house of Israel, I will judge you, each one according to his ways, declares the Sovereign Lord...
Repent! Turn away from all your offenses; then sin will not be your downfall. Rid yourselves of all the offenses you have committed, and get a new heart and a new spirit. Why will you die, O house of Israel...
Ezekiel 18:30-32 For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent and live! Repent and live!
Is God fair? “I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Lord.” “For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
No He is gracious and merciful He accepts people who fail He forgives sins He treats us according to his loving kindness
In His justice God deals with each person according to his behavior In His mercy God deals with us through the life and death of Jesus Christ
So what is “fair”? We treat each person as an individual with a vast potential We encourage and support We hold people accountable for their behavior We forgive and accept them when they repent – accept responsibility and desire to change
And the peace of God which surpasses all human understanding will keep your hearts and minds in Jesus Christ to everlasting life.