The Works

“…to the poor the gospel is preached.” – Luke 7:22

Text: John 14:12-14; Luke 7:22

Prop: Pizza delivery menu

Summary: Great work is possible when it brings glory to the Creator of all things: Jesus. You can do great things with God’s help.

Today I brought a pizza delivery menu. Who likes pizza? What items do you like on your pizza? (Listen to answers.) The neat thing about pizza is you get to decide what you like best and have it made that way. This list has a pizza named “The Works” and it has everything on it. Our Bible story is about the works Jesus did and the works we can do.

(Read text.)

Wow! Jesus promised that we would do greater works than he did. The word for “works” was the Greek word “ergon” that meant work that was measured by the amount of heat or effort it took to do it.

Imagine for a moment you had to rake the leaves on a large lawn all by yourself. If you had gloves, a rake, and bags to put them in, it would probably take several hours of hard work and perspiration from the heat of all your activity. But what if you asked your parent for help and you had an electric blower, a vacuum attachment, and a very long electric cord. The reverse-fan would suck up the leaves, chopping them up as you went along, and keeping them in one bag that you could empty in a mulch bin to re-use later in a garden. It would take much less time to complete the task, you might not even perspire, and all because you asked for help.

What may seem impossible to us is possible when we ask Jesus to help us. Our Lord did some wonderful things. When he listed his works to John the Baptist, he said them in an interesting order (see Luke 7:22): “the blind see, the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, to the poor the gospel is preached.” Jesus is a mighty healer of sickness and handicaps. More importantly, he sees the greatest work as telling those who are least likely to hear, that God loves them. Wow again!

Do you believe you can do the works of Jesus? Jesus believes you can and will help you if you ask. (Mention some great work done by your church that would have been impossible without God’s help.) If someone had asked me 20 years ago as I began to assist with children’s sermons — why don’t you go into 205 countries around the world and tell 70,000 people a month about Jesus? –I probably would have thought “that seems impossible.” I asked Jesus to help me where I was with what I had. Along came the internet, and what started humbly as a simple sharing of ideas with others doing the same task has turned out to be just that. Jesus gets all the credit! Wow again!

Let us pray. Dear Lord Jesus, you continue to wow us with your mighty works. Help us to tell others about you where we are. Help us to do mighty things in your name. Amen.

©2010 by Jim Kerlin. All rights reserved.

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