A Prophetic Word for the Mission

2018 Messages

Todd Wagner unpacks what it means to be the Church in our communities. Teaching from 1 Timothy 4, we examine the true purpose of Christ’s Bride : The Church and how fully-devoted followers of Christ can increase their effectiveness for the Kingdom.

Todd WagnerMar 25, 20181 Timothy 4:14-15; 1 Timothy 4:16; 1 Timothy 4:13; Matthew 16:17-18; Matthew 16:24-27; 1 Timothy 4:3-5; 1 Timothy 4:6-10; 1 Timothy 4:11; 1 Timothy 4:12; 1 Timothy 4:1

Father, would you help us to respond to your overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love? We thank you that we didn't earn it and we don't deserve it, but we do want to sing about it. Help us to be your people. We are desperate, Father, to decrease that you might increase, to be people who can say, as faithful men have always said, "The life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God who loved me and delivered himself up for me."

Lord, I talk about it, I preach about it, I sing about it, and I still can't attain to it. I know I have friends in this room who are like me. The human experience just dulls us to what you want us to be vibrantly awake to. So would your Spirit enlighten the eyes of our hearts that we might see you? We love you and we thank you for this week and what it represents in history and for the cross and for your Son and what he has done for us who believe. In Jesus' name, amen.

Turn with me to 1 Timothy, chapter 4. I want to share with you what we've been sharing with our friends who were saying to us, "We believe we can be more effective on our mission to call all people and be fully devoted followers of Christ where we live if we gathered closer to our home." Just so you know, our desire for every one of our campuses is that they would thrive in every way that would bring Jesus glory.

Our goal is not to have a bunch of campuses around. Our goal is to say, "What can we do to help you be effective for Jesus?" The day that not being a campus but an independent, functioning church is going to help you do that, we're all for it, but we are planting communities of faith that can testify to his living hope, and when it seems right, as it did in the book of Acts, to the Holy Spirit and to us for that to be its own thriving community that doesn't feel like it can do better by still being yoked closely to us, off they go.

As we began to meet with them to discern if these were people who just wanted to drive a little bit less on Sunday or if they were really wanting to be a living hope… One of the things we've been doing with them over the last six months is walking them through the Pastoral Epistles and just showing them what it is God expects ministers of the gospel, people who live in light of the living hope, to be and to do.

I wanted to walk you through one of the chapters we've spent a lot of time with them on, and I want to speak a prophetic word over you like I spoke a prophetic word over them, and I want to show you how I can say that with absolute confidence and how when you speak a prophetic word over somebody you can know you are doing what a prophet should do.

There has been a lot going on out there these days with the gift of prophecy and what it is. I have put together a little segment for you, if you're curious, on Real Truth. Real Quick. (What is the Gift of Prophecy?)Let me show you and model for you a biblical prophetic word this morning. First Timothy, chapter 4.

Paul is writing to a young Timothy who is probably in his 20s, maybe younger, in Ephesus. Think San Francisco. It was a port city filled with all kinds of immorality and amazing prosperity. He tells Timothy this. After sharing with him for three chapters some other things, he says, "But the Spirit explicitly says that in later times some will fall away from the faith [you have embraced] …" The living hope or the roaring Lion of Judah who has conquered the grave.

Some are going to fall away from depending upon him as the sole provision for their forgiveness and the full hope of their life. "…paying attention to deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons…" When you see stuff like… "Whoa, man. Doctrines of demons and deceitful spirits. How are we going to deal with that and how do you go about fighting the demonic presence?" Well, let me tell you how.

It's not by casting it out. It's not by binding Satan. The Bible says Satan will not be bound until Christ himself is on earth reigning. The Bible says right now Satan is a roaring lion seeking whom he may devour, and we are to resist him, and we don't engage with Satan and demonic forces with a power encounter; we engage with deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons with a truth encounter.

You might want to say this. In 2 Corinthians 10:4 it says, "…for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses." Then it says in verse 5, "We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ…" The way you wage war against doctrines of demons is not by casting them out; it's by bringing truth in.

You can't get rid of hate with more hate. You only get rid of hate with love. You can't get rid of darkness by fighting it with anything other than light. So what we do is we bring light where there is error. There are people who are locked in bondage to the belief that you can earn your way to God through certain behaviors. You're about to see that's exactly what Paul says. There are people who are locked up who believe the way to find hope in this life is to be more powerful, more comfortable, more pleasured than they were before, and that's their hope.

Even as you saw a bunch of folks testifying in Fort Worth. "I was a slave to selfishness, sin, pleasure-seeking, things that were destroying my marriage and leaving my kids as orphans until the living hope of Christ entered into my life." Anything that pulls you away from the source of life is a doctrine of a demon. Anything that doesn't exalt Christ as the living hope is a deceitful spirit. It's as simple as that.

So don't make too big a deal out of this, but that means the way you will wage war against those who are held captive to sin is by declaring to them the hope we have as believers and the true story of God's redemptive love. He goes on to say, " [There are going to be] men who forbid marriage and advocate abstaining from foods which God has created to be gratefully shared in by those who believe and know the truth."

In other words, he's going to say, "Some people think the way to earn God's favor is by abstaining from certain things. No, that's not how you earn God's favor. You don't deserve it. You can't earn it. God has provided for you through the sacrifice of his Son the only means through which you can be reconciled to him."

He says in verse 4, "For everything created by God is good…" Marriage is good. Sex is good, but you have to use it where he created it to be used. Certain derivatives of certain plants we use to get drugs are good if they're sanctified, it says right here, by the Word of God and prayer. What do I mean by that? I mean God has built into a lot of different plants derivatives of those plants that can be used medicinally and in a way that is helpful to the human experience if it's sanctified by the Word of God and prayer.

It is not to numb you to realities. It's not to help you escape the realities of this world. No. Jesus wants to deal with the realities of this world head on and not take some hallucinogenic trip. Sometimes, because you live in a world filled with sin and death, he's going to give you a means to numb the pain so we can get rid of the error, but he doesn't want you to be dependent upon that which numbs you to pain.

Pain is a great teacher. It shows us something is not right and you need to get rid of that which is eating at you. We want to do that as gently as we can, so at times we use those derivatives of drugs to help you. That's all he's saying right here. You don't earn God's favor by what you do do or what you don't do. You earn God's favor by acknowledging you are a person who can never be good enough for a holy God, and you accept his provision, his antidote for sin, which is Jesus Christ.

He says in verse 6, "In pointing out these things to the brethren, you will be a good servant of Christ Jesus, constantly nourished on the words of the faith and of the sound doctrine which you have been following." Talking about this to young Timothy. "But have nothing to do with worldly fables…" I might even say the latest church growth techniques, but make disciples. "On the other hand, discipline yourself…"

This is what you need to do. If you're going to be a serious follower of Christ, you want to be somebody who disciplines yourself for the purpose of godliness. I'm all for bodily fitness if you want to be about it, but make sure you're spending more time on your soul care than you are your mirror look, because it's going to have benefit not just for this life but also, it says, for the life to come.

Then it says in verse 9, "It is a trustworthy statement deserving full acceptance." In other words, this ought to be the thing that consumes you. If you are truly a part of the church of Jesus Christ, you ought to be more convinced that living for Jesus as a faithful servant for him is the most significant thing you can do. Verse 10: "For it is for this we labor and strive, because we have fixed our hope on the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of believers."

Then we have this amazing verse: "Prescribe and teach these things." If you this week were striving more for something other than making the living hope of Christ known, you were off task and off mission. This is a mission. Every single part of our budget here is a missionary budget. You are all missionaries. Every single one of you.

If you're a part of the church of Jesus Christ, you don't go to church; you are the church, and the church is in the world to be a living hope. The church is in the world to be missional in its living. The church is in the world to go and help people who are being held captive by deceitful spirits and doctrines of demons. In other words, teachings that don't lead to life but will steal, kill, and destroy the life God intends for you.

You need to be an individual who is out there laboring and striving for this purpose. You're not here to be more comfortable or make more money. You're not here to make a living; you're here to make a difference. You don't go to church; you are the church. America is suffering because fewer and fewer people are the church. We still have a lot of people who go to church, but so many folks who go to church today will not be the church this week. May it never be.

Some of you might say, "Todd, I'm new in my faith." Well, so was Timothy when Paul wrote this letter. So I say to you verse 12. "Let no one look down on your youthfulness, but rather in speech, conduct, love, faith and purity, show yourself an example of those who believe." In other words, folks ought to look at you and see you're not hoping in what they're hoping in.

They're going to see the way you relate to one another, the way you do life, the way you do marriage, the way you do conflict is different, and they'll go, "What is the source of your hope?" The Scripture says as you become more and more like Jesus, you're going to become more and more contrary to the ways of the world, and they're going to ask you to give a defense to explain why you live the way you do.

When they do, it says in 1 Peter 3:15, you should be ready to give an account for the hope that is within you, and you do it gently and with respect. So we're telling our friends who are members of Watermark who are about ready to gather on the Frisco Campus these things, and we're saying, "Hey, guys. Is Jesus so central to your life that you prescribe and teach these things? Is Jesus so central to your life that your speech is different?"

Because if your speech isn't different, you can't be somebody who says, "There's a better way," if your life and your conduct and your love and your faith and your purity isn't different. Not perfect, but if the direction of your life is now not informed by heaven, then quit telling people you have a hope of heaven.

By the way, when you blow it (which you will, like I do), you own it and go, "That was when I increased and Jesus decreased. You saw me being a slave to the same hopelessness you were. I confess that. I agree that's not what God wants. I ask your forgiveness. I'll make amends, and I am going to get back to the public reading of Scripture so I can be reminded and exhorted and taught…" Now I'm quoting 1 Timothy 4:13. "…how I should live as a person who has living hope."

Do you understand this, church? We don't perform so God loves us, but having known the love of God we are attentive to his will and way. I listened last night to something I never knew existed. Did you know Woody Allen used to have a talk show? Woody Allen used to have a talk show, and he had Billy Graham on it back when Billy was the young Billy, the young Elvis.

I never really had seen this side of Billy Graham before. I'll be honest with you. The young Billy Graham was on talk shows all the time, and he was just so winsome. This is worth 10 minutes of your time. Go to YouTube and put in "Woody Allen and Billy Graham." It's 10 minutes. It's hilarious. Woody Allen is hilarious, and the way he handles Dr. Graham and the way Dr. Graham handles him…

At one point, somebody asked the question about premarital sex, and Dr. Graham basically said to him, "Hey, Woody, here's the thing. You think God told you you couldn't have sex before marriage to ruin your fun. That's not at all why God said you shouldn't have sex before marriage. It's because he means to protect you." He went on to say, "There's a place for everything, and it's good. It's a gift from God if it's sanctified by the Word of God and prayer."

In the 1960s when that whole world was blowing up and Woody Allen was right in the middle of it… You need to watch that interchange and watch how Graham very simply says, "Hey, you need to know the love of God, and then if you know the love of God you won't feel like you're getting ripped off because you can't do something.

You'll understand a loving Father, because you've paid attention to the Scripture, who cares for you, who is unending and reckless in his love for you is going to tell you to stay away from things that look life-giving but aren't." The way I always say it around here is "God is not looking to rip you off, Woody. He's looking to set you free. Your problem is you have a wrong view of God."

He says, "Until I come, give attention to the public reading of Scripture, to exhortation and teaching." Watch this. This is where I said to my friends in Frisco… This is the prophetic utterance. Wouldn't you love if I came to you as an apostle of God, one sent forth from God, and said something like this to you? "Do not neglect the spiritual gift within you…"

By the way, you do know every single one of you has received a spiritual gift. This is 1 Peter 4:10. That's why we have a class here to help you discover what that gift is, to develop it, and then deploy it. You've been given a spiritual gift. "As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God."

All that says is none of us are to use our spiritual gifts for self-advancement or self-glorification. Every gift we've been given is to serve the body and love one another. He said, "Timothy, you've been given a gift," and he says, "I want you to be a good steward of it." He goes on to say, "…which was bestowed on you through prophetic utterance with the laying on of hands by the presbytery."

You might be going, "Man, I wish I had a prophetic utterance." Are you ready, Dallas? I'm going to give you a prophetic utterance. It's the same one I gave to our friends in Frisco who are about ready to start to be a mission in Frisco, people who say they want to be the church of Jesus Christ. Not go to a church (that is bad language) but be the church of Jesus Christ. Here it comes.

It first started in Matthew, chapter 16, when Jesus was with his disciples in the same way Timothy was Paul's disciple and the folks in Frisco and somewhere are my disciples, our disciples. Jesus says this about Peter. Peter says, "You're the living hope. You're not Elijah. You're not John the Baptist. You're not some great teacher. You're not just a normal rabbi. You are the Messiah. You're Eternal Father, Prince of Peace, Mighty God. You're the Wonderful Counselor. You're the visible image of the invisible God. You are Israel's blessed hope and the hope of the world."

Jesus says, "Blessed are you, Simon, because you can't figure that out on your own. Only the Father can let you see who I am." He said, "What I'm going to do is on this, the profession of the church of Jesus Christ, I'm going to make that profession the foundation, and when anybody sees that God is good and he is never-ending, overwhelmingly, and recklessly in love with people to rescue them from bondage to things (like Woody Allen is in bondage to to this day), I'm going to use you."

Watch this. Here's a prophetic utterance: "The gates of hell can't stand against it." There's no doctrine of demons and no deceitful spirit in Dallas, San Francisco, Las Vegas, Frisco, Plano, or Fort Worth that will stand against it. If you just go and proclaim the Word of God and live with the hope you have discovered in Jesus, you're going to watch people be set free from doctrines of demons. Now that's a prophetic utterance.

Did you hear what I just said? God is going to use you, church in Dallas, to change this city this week if you'll just go out and live in Christ, with Christ, and share with other people that which God wants you to share. It says in verse 15, "Take pains to be faithful with your calling. Be absorbed in them." Church, can I tell you why we didn't make a bigger impact in Dallas? Because we labored and strove for other things. We did not take pains with the mission this week. We weren't absorbed in them.

People didn't see the progress of our living hope. They saw us be a slave to our NCAA brackets being devastated. They saw us be a slave to business not going the way we want. They saw us be a slave to body image. They saw us be a slave to material desires. So all we do is come and remind ourselves of what really matters.

When we started Watermark, we never knew we'd have a building, but as we started to gather… First we met over there 12 to 15 years into our existence, and then we eventually moved over here. The night before we moved into this place, I just sat up here until about 3:00 in the morning, and in this whole section I just stood and wrote down a bunch of Scripture I wanted and prayed that God would make true from this particular spot as long as he let this spot stand.

One of the Scriptures that's written right below my feet is 1 Timothy 4:16. It says, "Pay close attention to yourself and to your teaching; persevere in these things, for as you do this you will ensure salvation both for yourself and for those who hear you." I just said, "Guys, listen. That's not just for me as the pastor of Watermark; that's for every single one of us as a kingdom of priests."

We need to pay close attention to ourselves and our teaching. We need to persevere in these things, for as we do this we'll ensure salvation for ourselves. The way you really know you believe something is you do according to it. People say what they think, but they do what they believe. What do you really believe is worth laboring and striving for? If you didn't labor and strive to advance the gospel right here in good old Dallas, Texas, it wasn't salvation to those because no one could hear you.

I'm going to give you one more prophetic utterance. Are you ready? "To whom much is given much is expected." This is back to Matthew, chapter 16. Jesus says to his disciples, people who say they know he's the living hope… He said, "That's awesome, but if you really want to come after me, if you want to follow me, then you have to deny yourself. Labor and strive for what my purposes are. You have to take up your cross and follow me."

"For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul?" Nothing. Now watch this. This is prophetic. Here's a prophetic word for you. "For the Son of Man is going to come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and will then repay every man according to his deeds."

I want to just say this to you, church. This is Hebrews 6:10. "For God is not so unkind as to forget your love for his name in having ministered to and still ministering to the saints." That is a verse that is not saying, "You'd better get right or God is going to pay you back." We believe the wrath of God has been poured out on Jesus Christ. There is no payment for our sin.

What he's saying is those of you who really lived as a 1 Timothy 4 church, who didn't go to church, who didn't have this Americanized, culture-ized, dead church experience, who didn't deny themselves certain things to look spiritual but who radically embraced the gospel and paid attention to the Scripture and was absorbed in these things and took pains to be faithful… God will not forget that when he comes with the glory of God and his angels. Let's go, church.

God is ready to bless you and to reward you for your faithful service, but that doesn't mean showing up, paying up, and shutting up; it means getting after it. One of the things I wanted to do as we seek to get after it and to remind ourselves that no amount of our getting after it will ever earn God's love is to remind ourselves again what makes us safe so that when God comes to pour out his wrath he's not going to pour it out on us because we have sheltered ourselves in the provision of his Son.

As you move to the passion of Christ this week, we just wanted to take a time and remind ourselves through Communion… I will tell you Jesus doesn't want you to eat oyster crackers and grape juice once every now and then in large settings. There is no power in these elements because I've prayed over them or I give them to you. Jesus said, "I want you to continually meditate on who I am, and every time you eat…" I believe that.

"…every time you eat and break bread and drink from the cup, stop and be reminded 'This is what love looks like. This is the provision for you.'" God is not looking to rip you off; he's looking to set you free. He's not coming to judge you for your sins. Your sins have been poured out on the cross. When the body of Christ was broken and the blood of Christ was shed, it was provision for you. That living hope you have proclaim to others until he returns.

But it's okay that we take Communion here. It's not okay if this is the only place you commune. When you leave here you're going to have lunch with others. Take Communion. We'll talk about how to do that. Just be still. Receive the elements we're about to hand out. We'll take them together. I'll talk about what Scripture warns us against when we take these elements and how we can do it in a way that honors God. Be still. Meditate on these words. Receive the elements.

That's what we do. It says, "Whenever you eat or drink, do all to the glory of God." Don't you love a good meal? Sometimes you just smell it on the grill and it's your favorite meal. You walk in the house. Your wife is cooking. You're just like, "Oh man, I love this meal." When you sit down, you should go, "Do you know what's even better than this meal? What this meal reminds me of. It reminds me of the love of God whose body was broken."

God is a great teacher. The continual sacrifices that were offered were a fragrant aroma that would go out all throughout the land that there was a sweet provision from God that gave us forgiveness from sins. The cross didn't smell wonderful, but it's a wonderful truth. Scripture says you eat or drink Communion in an unworthy manner when you just have a dead, ritualistic understanding of it.

It's a doctrine of demons that if you take Communion, if you go through baptism, you're going to be more loved by God. No. Baptism is what you do because you know the love of God. It's a public proclamation. It's the same thing Communion is. If you take this cup and you can't tell somebody Jesus is your personal living hope and when you became personally alive and aware of that, you are eating and drinking judgment to yourself, because what you're saying is there's provision for sinners out there but you have never acknowledged your own sin and your complete dependence upon Jesus Christ.

You are eating and drinking judgment on yourself if you have not testified personally your need for Jesus and his provision for you and, frankly, if you haven't taken the very first step of obedience, which is to get baptized. It's okay if you want take this if you haven't been baptized. That's fine. I'm talking about as an adult believer I just would go, "I'd better do that if I say he's my King. Let me put that high on the list of this week."

You also eat and drink judgment to yourself when you act like you know what forgiveness and love looks like and you're not a forgiving and loving person. Do you want to see your marriage materially change? Every time you eat dinner with your wife just go, "Sweetie, how are we doing? Is our marriage defined by the love of Christ for the church? Do you feel that from me? Are you as cherished and honored as God wants you to be with the overwhelming, never-ending, reckless love of God as I am? How can I do better?"

The wife should say, "Sweetie, I know you're just a man. You're not perfect. You're not going to love me like Jesus, but I see you trying. Am I responding to you and following your leadership as you try to be God's man in a way that honors God? Am I spurring you on to be the man God wants you to be? Have I been competing with your headship as opposed to completing you to be a godly man? How can I respect you and love you more?"

"Hey, kids, how have we done? Are we exasperating you by not disciplining you or are we exasperating you by disciplining you out of anger or are we doing it in the love of Christ?" "Hey, Mom and Dad, have I been dishonoring to you?" That's the way you eat and drink. That's the way your family meals ought to go all the time. He built it in. It's in the Scripture, and we've sanctified it.

People all the time say, "How come Watermark doesn't take Communion more?" I go, "I don't know. Because we're full of a bunch of disobedient people who don't do it the way Jesus says." I'm talking about in your home. The church in America is corrupt and ineffective because we've made it something you do once a week. But let's do it now. If you know Jesus, he's your living hope, and you know his body was broken for you, let's celebrate that together as we taste a reminder. The body of Christ broken for you.

It says after he took that particular piece of bread at the Passover seder he was at and used it as a reminder of what his body is, he lifted the cup. It was the third of the four cups in a Passover seder. It was the cup of redemption that celebrated the redeeming work of God from the original exodus out of bondage into freedom. Jesus says, "My blood is what is going to break you out of the bondage of sin into true freedom with Christ. You're now sons set free." The blood of Christ shed for you.

I love that I'm at a church whose tradition is to use grape juice and not wine, because I love how sweet it is. When it hits your lips your mouth is going, "Yes!" It's sweet. That's what the gospel is. It's sweet. Do you know there are people in this town who don't know the gospel? Do you know there are people in this town who are just wondering if somebody knows a hope they don't have and would love for somebody like you, who's a true member of the church of Jesus Christ, to love them this week? Do you know it always starts with an invitation to come and see the goodness of God? Watch this story.


Kimo: It started with an invite. That's when I met a guy named Jordan Robison who six months earlier was just a stranger. He quickly moved to become a friend of mine, and when we were driving home one day he asked me if I had a faith. Because I said I was a Christian my whole life, that wasn't a hard question. I told him what I believed, and I said, "Absolutely. I'm a Christian."

What he didn't know at the time was I just had a bunch of junk in my life. On the outside I had it all together. I had a good job that was paying well. I'd worked hard. But on the inside I was a storm, was just a mess. So when he invited me to church it was an easy yes for me. I started seeing people who said they believed the exact same thing I did, but they just lived it out very, very differently.

He eventually invited me to jump to Equipped Disciple. I started seeing these other guys who really just poured their life and believed this book called the Bible. The way they lived it out, they really believed it. That invitation led me to jump into his baptism and just see him proclaim his faith. I started realizing what I said I believed was very different. I had to make a choice. Did I want to go all in or not?

From there I decided to jump all in. Eventually he invited me to jump into community with him. That invitation led me to jump in to be roommates with him. That led to another invitation to jump into Unashamed weekend. I started learning how to share my faith. As I look back over the last four years at the tremendous opportunities and the tremendous experiences, it just started with an invitation.

[End of video]

Kimo is one of our fellows right now going through a year-long discipleship program. He left the business world because he felt like he wanted to give more of himself to make disciples. Kimo is about to go on staff up in our Plano Campus to lead us in External Focus and the opening of another Watermark urgent care clinic, just like the one we have here that has seen over 30,000 patients. We're opening another one to make disciples by meeting the physical needs of people in partnership with the Collin County government, community, and private business.

Kimo is going to lead that because somebody just said, "Hey, Kimo…" Kimo's life wasn't changed because he came to Watermark. Kimo's life was changed because he decided to be absorbed and to labor and strive and say, "I'm going to follow Jesus. I'm going to lose my life for him. Not be a churchgoer. I'm going to be a Christ follower." It all started with an invitation from a missionary like you.

This week, like very few weeks in our calendar, people are wondering if somebody has a hope they don't have. "What's all this Easter stuff really about?" You're going to be reading about it ( watermark.org/easter). I pray you're going to be living it at Watermark deployed. I have in my Bible a thing we call a top 10 list. If you don't have one, stop by the visitor's center on your way out and get one.

On the back we have a seven-step biblical strategy to help people become like Kimo, where they believe in Christ, belong to his body, are trained in truth, and are strong in a life of ministry and service because we initiate a friendship with them. They're not a project; they're a person. We just love them. We're not trying to convert them; we're trying to be their friend. We share our story of grace with them, our living hope, and then we invite them to come and see the power of Jesus in people's lives. Then from there the Spirit of God is going to take over.

I have names written down here of my friends and individuals who I pray for all the time. What I want you to do is think right now about the Kimos in your life. It might be waiters you know. It might be trainers. It might be neighbors. It might be family members. I want you to get your cell phones out, and I want you to go ahead to your text message app and type in the number 214-997-9123. Go ahead and put that up there on the top.

What you're about to do is just first names… Not first and last. Not all of the names at once, but we want every name you know that needs to know the living hope. Your top 10 list and others. I just want you to text those names in. I want you to see what can happen if the Word of Christ, the living hope of God's people, goes to work in this city this week to reach future Kimos. Just type one name in and hit "Send" and type another name in and hit "Send" as we sing about our living hope. Let's see what God might do in this city. Let's stand together.

When you just look up there at those names… They keep coming. We're loading them 40 at a time as we get them. You just start to think about when Jesus was on the cross and he cried out, "My God! My God! Why have you forsaken me?" he could have said, "I'll tell you why. Because of Alice and Daniel and Marco, because of Terese, because of Cassie, because of Kaylee. That's why. Because I love those people who are captive to sin."

When you say, "My God, my God, why am I still here on this broken earth? Why am I still suffering in this world that is affected so much by sin?" he could say, "Because of John, because of Holden, because of Zoe, because of Nichole, because of Rachel. Because you know those people and I want you to testify to them that hope has come. I don't want you to go to church; I want you to be my church. You're there for that reason."

You are missionaries. This is a mission. This is a disciple-making place where we help other people escape the wrath that is to come and live today with a hope that will forever be satisfied in Jesus Christ. If you're here and you've never experienced that satisfaction, would you let us know how we can serve you?

There's that perforated section. You can just check a box. We'll follow up with you personally. Or you can come hang out with us here. Or you can continue your conversation with somebody who a little bit ago told you they have a living hope. Are you ready? What a week. What a privilege. Let's go, church.

Have a great week of worship. We'll see you.