Weekend Message Takeaway: “Unfamiliar Passions of God”

Are Jesus and I really interested in the same things? This is a powerful and important question we must all ask ourselves. This past weekend, special guest Gary Haugen, founder and president of International Justice Mission, explored God’s passion for justice and the world, how God reveals His goodness to the world, and how He wants to use us to impact lives.  

Watch the video below to see a few highlights from the teaching and share it with your friends via social media. To watch the message in its entirety, click here.


Let’s recap some of the key talking points from Pastor Doug's teaching this weekend:

What do you imagine is the most difficult thing for people in our world to believe about the Christian faith? The idea that God is good because they are in so much pain. Each day, 20,000 children die because their parents can’t get them enough nutrition. There are 1.5 billion people who have no access to medical care. There are hundreds of thousands of children who live on the streets in big urban cities around the world, alone and abandoned. How are those people supposed to believe God is good?

Consider how Jesus taught His disciples to pray: “Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:10 NIV). Jesus is inviting us to stop waiting until we go to heaven, and pray that we may experience heaven come down. You see, we live in the space between—it’s present but not in its fullness. It’s already come down—in the form of salvation and redemption through Jesus and the coming of the Holy Spirit—but not yet fully realized, as we live in a fallen and lost world.

What is God’s plan for revealing His goodness to those who are suffering? His plan is us! God wants to use us to shine His light among mankind so that people will see our good works and glorify God the Father. Jesus doesn’t tell us we can be the light of the world or that we might be the light. He says we ARE the light, we are the way God has chosen to show His goodness. God has made those who believe in Jesus into His ambassadors, and He wants to reach out and save people and show them His goodness, grace, and love through us. He wants to use us to stop injustice, to help the oppressed, to care for the widows and orphans, and to stand up for those who can’t stand up for themselves.

In a world of brutal abuse, there’s a God of justice who wants the abuse to stop and bring rescue to the oppressed. God’s against abuse and it turns out that this actually matters in our world. He has a plan for stopping injustice and rescuing the oppressed . . . and once again, that plan is to use us, His children! Micah 6:8 (NIV) says, “He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” And in Isaiah 1:17 (NIV), we’re command to “Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow.”

There can be no doubt that God has given to us the work of doing justice in the world. But for many, seeing all the great evil and injustice taking place everywhere leaves us feeling powerless. In those moments of powerlessness, we would do well to remember when Jesus fed the 5,000. In the story, the disciples looked at the magnitude of the need and looked at their own resources and thought there was no way it could have anything to do with them. Likewise, God tells us to seek justice and rescue the oppressed, but we look at the magnitude of the abuse and the oppression compared to our own little resources and think there’s no way He can be serious.

But as we see in the story, God can use even the most humble of lunches to feed a multitude. All it took was a willingness to allow Jesus to do it. Our Lord simply invites us to give Him what we have, and in that moment, Jesus will do the rest! He will accomplish the miracle, He will feed 5,000 people to overflowing, He will bring about justice and mercy for the oppressed. Today, Jesus is looking for those who are willing to make themselves available and humbly open for Him to work miracles. Give Him what you have and He’ll do a supernatural miracle with it; He’ll do exceedingly, abundantly more than we could ever ask, think, or imagine!

Quote to Remember: For 2,000 years, Christians have been trying to make it believable that God is good! And if some people are suffering because they don’t have access to the gospel, then we get to go and share the story of God’s love with them!—Gary Haugen

Times, Dates, and Locations Vary by Campus
This experience is designed to help you build relationships, grow in your faith, and find your fit here at Calvary. Throughout our time together, we'll take a deeper look at who we are as a church and where God is leading us as we unpack our mission to make disciples, how we've been called to carry it out, and how you can connect with us and be part of the work God is doing here. Click here to register.

Saturday, January 20, Starts at 8:30am and Every Half-Hour | 1 Block South of the Pompano Pier on A1A 
If you’ve recently made a decision to follow Jesus, getting baptized is the next step in your journey. Join us for our next baptism on the beach! Bring your Bible, a towel, and money for parking! For details, or to find out why baptism is such an important step in your life, click here.

January 31–February 7 | Various Times and Locations
“Arise and go” were the words God spoke to Jonah as He called the prophet to share His message with a different culture. Today, He’s calling us to do the same. Come find out how you can take up the call of God and be part of something amazing and life-changing. Get a closer look at how God is reaching the nations and expanding His kingdom through ordinary people who said “I will go!” Meet missionaries from various countries and hear their stories, learn about the persecuted church, human trafficking, and how to share your faith with the people you encounter every day.

For more info, contact Lysa McMillan or click here.

Go in-depth into one of the most famous sermons ever preached by Jesus, the Beatitudes. This passage is filled with practical and profound wisdom that every Christian can benefit from. We pray that as you take the time over the next few weeks to study these ten verses, that you would hear from the Lord and experience a deeper relationship with Him! Click here to subscribe.

This Wednesday, Pastor Chris Baselice of our Plantation campus will explore the life of Moses. Come find out what true humility looks like as we learn how God used Moses, “a very humble man, more so than any man on the face of the earth” (Numbers 12:3 HCSB) in order to carry out a truly great, miraculous work.

This weekend we’ll continue our study through the Sermon on the Mount as Pastor Doug explores Matthew 5:6–8. Find out what it means to hunger and thirst for righteousness, what being merciful looks like, and how we can be pure in heart.

About the Author

Danny Saavedra

Danny Saavedra is a licensed minister who has served on staff at Calvary since 2012, managing the Calvary Devotional and digital discipleship resources. He has a Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling and Master of Divinity in Pastoral Ministry from Liberty Theological Seminary. His wife Stephanie, son Jude, and daughter Zoe share a love of Star Wars, good food, having friends over for dinner, and studying the Word together as a family.