Tim Keller | April 17, 2005
This sermon talks about how we can find lasting steadiness even when everything around us seems to be falling apart. It compares two mountain experiences – the Israelites’ scary meeting with God at Mount Sinai and the joyful, united experience of believers at Mount Zion, the heavenly Jerusalem. The key point is that as believers, we can enter a place of joy, togetherness, and God’s presence. The sermon also underlines the importance of listening to God’s voice and warns about the consequences of ignoring Him. It gives practical advice on how to stay firm in a shaky world.
1. The shakable life
We often see how fragile our lives are as we struggle with our own flaws, even when we try our best to be good. The Israelites’ intense encounter with God at Mount Sinai shows us how God’s presence can reveal our weaknesses and shake us up. If we build our lives on worldly things, we’re setting ourselves up for failure, because nothing in this world is unshakeable.
2. The unshakeable life
The writer of Hebrews compares two ways of living, promoting a life of service over selfishness. He paints a picture of a future society – the city of God – full of peace, joy, and fairness. Those who have experienced God’s love can form a community that shows a glimpse of this future city right now. The text emphasizes the importance of an identity firmly rooted in the church and our heavenly citizenship. This identity can heal past hurts and build true self-worth, unlike an identity based on outside things.
3. How to receive it
The church of the firstborn, the joyful gathering, angels, the city of the living God, Mount Zion, and God the judge are all mentioned in a single, deep paragraph. God’s judgement, which can seem scary, is really a test of solidity and eternity. But through Jesus, who took our judgement on the cross, we can enter God’s presence. There, we find our true identity, joy, and a future that can’t be shaken.
February Book Offer
In his book Counterfeit Gods, Tim Keller shows us how a proper understanding of the Bible reveals the truth about societal ideals and our own hearts — and that there is only one God who can wholly satisfy our cravings and fulfill our hopes.
February Book Offer