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Sermon ‘Unity in Diversity’ ICEL, Leuven April 7, 2013 Pieter Boersema.

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Presentation on theme: "Sermon ‘Unity in Diversity’ ICEL, Leuven April 7, 2013 Pieter Boersema."— Presentation transcript:

1 Sermon ‘Unity in Diversity’ ICEL, Leuven April 7, 2013 Pieter Boersema

2 ICEL Introduction One week after Easter with the ultimate event of the last Sunday, the day of the resurrection. The feast of Easter, well known in the world. How do we see Jesus and witness our Savior? The Bible is full of symbolic language; one important name for the crucified and resurrected Messiah is the ‘Lamb of God’. In the NT the Lamb has the figurative meaning of ‘the defenselessness of sheep which exist only to be slaughtered’ (Ps. 44: 11, 22). ‘Jesus as Lamb’ is the sacrificial language in the OT.

3 ICEL The Lamb of God: Jesus as the symbol of the ultimate sacrifice Genesis 22: [on mount Moriah] Isaac asked his father Abraham: “where is the lamb for the burnt offering?” and Abraham answered: “God himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering” Exodus 12: The lamb of the Passover: The blood of the lamb to be put on the sides of the doorframe (vs.7) The roasted meat eaten in haste (vs. 11). The Lamb as sacrifice in the worship of the Israelites (Exod. 29:38-42) Isaiah 53. The promised Messiah symbolized as a lamb to be slaughtered. (vs. 7)

4 ICEL The ‘Lamb of God’ in the NT John 1:29 “See the Lamb of God that takes away our sins”. John 3:16 The mystery of God’s love to the world to give His only Son. [Passover]. Q: The ‘Lion of Judah’ or the ‘Lamb slain for us’? 1432: The painting: ‘Het Lam Gods’ This triptych shows the history of salvation in pictures with the risen Lamb in the center. The emotion of fragility and victory.

5 ICEL The Adoration of the Lamb Hubert and Jan van Eyck, 1432, St. Bavo, Gent


7 Moravian Church religious heritage began in 1457 in Kunvald, Bohemia Jan Huss : “justification by grace through faith alone”. Herrnhuter Brüdergemeine, 18th-century renewal Protestant Mission Christian unity personal piety Missions Together with all the people Seal Moravian Church John 1:29 See the Lamb of God "Our Lamb has conquered, let us follow Him".

8 ICEL Following the Lamb of God The Great Commandment (Mark 12:28-34) One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

9 ICEL Continuing Mark 12: 28-34 “Well said, teacher,” the man replied. “You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.” When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions.

10 ICEL Unity in diversity Loving God and loving your neighbor as yourself Following Jesus, together with your neighbor Ephesians 3:17-19 ….. so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, [KJ: comprehend with all saints] to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Diversity is needed to understand the unity

11 ICEL The victory of the Lamb Revelation 5: 6 - 11 And between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders I saw a Lamb standing, as though it had been slain, with seven horns and with seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. And he went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who was seated on the throne. And when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. And they sang a new song, saying,

12 ICEL “Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation, and you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God, and they shall reign on the earth.” Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice, “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!”

13 ICEL The Lord’s Supper The lamb that brought victory (promise of Gen. 3). The weakness of people is their strength in Christ. Partaking in the Holy Communion is a moment of togetherness. Unity in diversity in the light of the Lamb of God. Individuality and fellowship together. Not ‘one’ culture but a ‘variety’ of cultures (including the history) to understand the grace of God and our existence by the love of Jesus.

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