Thursday, June 16, 2016

The Lord Hath Need of Thee

The Lord Hath Need of Thee
By Bishop Noel Jones delivered Sunday, March 20, 2016
at the City Of Refuge in Gardena, California

In St. Matthew's Gospel Chapter 21 and one of the difficult thing is to speak on an occasion such as Easter and Palm Sunday and, deal with the issues of the occasion and still be relevant for the contemporary circumstance and situation that surrounds each one of our lives.

The difficulty is how do I honor the occasion, but at the same time stay relevant for the benefit of those who might not even understand what the occasion is about because everybody who is within the parameters of the walls isn't necessarily churched to the extent where they understand the ramifications of the occasion. So it is significant then that somehow in the presentation God has to help you to cover the tradition, and at the same time affect the circumstances that exist in the lives of each one of of us on a day-to-day basis. So with that in mind we're going to attempt by the grace of God to do both. I would like for you to go to Matthew 21.

"1 And when they drew nigh unto Jerusalem, and were come to Bethpage, unto the mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples,

2 Saying unto them, Go into the village over against you, and straightway ye shall find an ass tied, and a colt with her: loose them, and bring them unto me.

Now, the audacity of Jesus to send two disciples, didn't send them straight to the house to inquire of the owner, and then ask of the owner could they have his donkey, and the donkey's baby. But he sends them to get the donkey, and then he says:

"3 And if any man say ought unto you,"

That's interesting when I think about this. I think about them breaking the roof off the man's house to lower the man sick with the palsy, and its interesting that Jesus didn't say anything about them tearing the man's roof down. It would seem like, why are you tearing the man's roof down? You shouldn't be tearing the man's roof down. Who is going to pay for this roof? Nobody said anything. The audacity and the boldness of Jesus again suggests, who he is. You have to assess who he is. The earth is the Lord's and the fullness thereof. So if I want a donkey, go over there and get that donkey because the donkey does not belong to the man, it belongs to me.

"3 And if any man say ought unto you, ye shall say, The Lord hath need of them; and straightway" That's the common word in Mark, and Matthew is using it here. "and straightway he will send them.

4 All this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying,

5 Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass.

6 And the disciples went, and did as Jesus commanded them,

7 And brought the ass, and the colt, and put on them their clothes, and they set him thereon.

8 And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from the trees, and strawed them in the way.

9 And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest."

Look at that person beside you with all the ebullience you can muster, with all the energy you can find, look them dead in the face and tell 'em, "The Lord hath need of thee” Congregational Response: The Lord hath need of thee. That didn't sound too ebullient, with much energy. That sounded real anemic. Amen, you scared of that person beside you? Look 'em in the face and tell 'em, "The Lord hath need of thee." Congregational Response: The Lord hath need of thee." Yes, sounds better now.

There are certain things, and I had run across the most wonderful Old Testament scripture that struck me right in the face because I had been reading in that scripture for a long time and never did see that, and it was Jehoshaphat of course, and Jehoram who, the son of Ahab, who didn't follow the idolatrous attitude of his father, but he followed the sin of Jeroboam. And Elijah was called upon to prophesy. Jehoshaphat said, "Is there a prophet here?" They were going against the Moabites. And he said, "Is there a prophet in this place that can prophesy to us?" And someone said, "Yes, there's Elijah" But Elijah did not like the king of Israel, and he said to him, "If it wasn't for Jehoshaphat being here I wouldn't even look at you" And then he prophesied, they sent for the minstrel. This is II Kings 3:15, they sent for the minstrel, the minstrel played and he prophesied and when he prophesied, he told them that there was water, some ditches be some water 'cause there's stuff needed. And then he said, and this is where I liked, this is just a little thing for the Lord.

So that's what I intended to come in here with today, but as I was traveling, I got a text from a young man who is preaching in the city, and he asked me about this text, and I spent an hour and a half, trying to convince him of the text, and so the machinations of my mind was so completely taken by this text that I could not switch it to go back to what I had, so you're stuck with this.

There are certain things to consider in the text that is interesting because we're trying to figure out the relationship or the significance of a contemporary view of the donkey or the ass, and the fact that Jesus could have come in on a stallion, an Arabian horse, but he chose to come in, in a very meek and lowly, in a very modest way by choosing an ass.

And it would seem to me that that dynamic becomes significant because he knew who he is, and he didn't need to have come in any more glamorously because he was very conscience of who he is. And it becomes significant for us in a contemporary environment to realize that it is not our surroundings or what we have, what we wear, what we drive that gives us any significance about who we are. Many times we are enamored by the outward circumstance, and the floss, and the flaunt to give us a sense of importance. But Jesus did not need to come in on a stallion because he knew who he is. I think sooner or later we have got to come to the place where we stop feeling like we have got to impress everybody or impress anybody. Because oftentimes it bites into our self-esteem when we're put in a place where we feel like we have got to overcome everybody's conceptualization of who we are, and fail to understand that there's peace and comfort when you see yourself in the proper light, and understand that nothing around you embellishes or gives significance to who you are. Because who you are does not come from the outside, but rather from the inside. So ultimately you can move everything from around me, and I'll still be me because my strength is not in cars, in houses, in clothes, in shoes, but my strength is in the fruit of the Holy Spirit.

I think it is important to understand secondly, just in opening that it is a grace for him to even choose the donkeyAnd when I say the Lord has need of theeyou don't have to be a stallion for him to use youyou can just be an ass.

To hear the rest of the message, please view my YouTube Channel or you may purchase the entire message from the Bookstore at or call nationwide (800) 526-6635 or the Breadbox Bookstore at (310) 516-1433. You may also download the City Of Refuge/Noel Jones Ministries church app.

May you grow in the nature of Christ in Jesus name, amen.

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