Celebrating BOTH our Unique Backgrounds and Common Citizenship

Series: Freed: from Prison to Peace

Celebrating BOTH our Unique Backgrounds and Common Citizenship

June 14, 2020 | Mark Simmons

Celebrating BOTH our Unique Backgrounds and Common Citizenship

Revelation, Acts and Philippians 3

Where are we heading?

Revelation 5:9 (NIV)

Revelation 7:9-10 (NIV)

If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.

African proverb


Shavuot/Pentecost (sha-voo-oat)

  • One of the 3 Pilgrimage festivals of Judaism
  • 50 days after Passover (freedom from slavery)
  • Celebrate ingathering of wheat harvest
  • Rabbinical tradition receiving of the Torah
  • Creation of an ethnically-based, religiously covenanted nation


How God is getting us to our heavenly citizenship:

  1. How God creates unity among Hebrew/Aramaic speaking Jews and other Jews

Acts 2         Jewish Pentecost

Acts 6         Greek-speaking Jews protest structural injustice. 


  1. How God creates unity among Jews and Samaritans

Acts 8         Samaritan Pentecost    

  1. How God creates unity among Jews and Gentiles

How God overcomes Jewish discrimination against Gentiles:

Acts 9         Saul the Pharisee/Persecutor called to Gentiles


Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?

Why don’t you fast enough?

Your disciples are picking grain heads on the sabbath!

You have to give us a sign for us to believe you.

Why don’t your disciples do the ritual hand purification before they eat?

The Pharisees went out to try to trap Jesus in his words about paying tax to the Empire.

Woe to you. You are destroying people spiritually with your rules!

Why is he speaking blasphemy—he can’t forgive sins, only God can!

Why are you healing on the Sabbath?

Why is this supposed prophet letting a sinful woman wash his feet?

Why do you sit at the same table as tax collectors and sinners?

They opposed him fiercely and besieged him with questions. Tried to catch him in his words.

They sneered at Jesus’s teaching about not loving money.

Teacher rebuke your disciples who are claiming that you are the coming King!

They sent temple guards to arrest him early in his ministry.

They tried to get Jesus to approve stoning a woman caught in adultery.

Jesus called them thieves and robbers.

When he drove that demon out, it’s because he used the power of the devil to do so.

They plotted to kill him after he raised Lazarus from the dead.

[After seeing Jesus heal on the Sabbath] let’s kill Jesus.

They came with Judas to arrest Jesus.

Paul hunting down Jewish “heretics” to kill and imprison them for following Jesus as the Messiah.

Paul still said in Acts 23, when speaking to the Jewish ruling council that he was a Pharisee. 

Romans 9

Acts 10-11   Gentile Pentecost

Acts 13       Diverse leadership team in Antioch

Acts 15       Gentiles do not have to assimilate to Judaism. A new                          family


  • Pharisaic, Messianic Jew as the founder
  • Jews and Gentiles in one new heavenly citizenship colony/community
  • Timothy (Gentile father and Jewish mother).
  • Epaphroditus (pagan name meaning “belonging to Aphrodite”)
  • Roman Colony citizens are now citizens of heaven

Philippians 3:2-9 (NLT)

Philippians 3:14,17, 20-21 (NLT)



Open up



Series Information

Other sermons in the series

Jun 07, 2020

Interrupted: Racism

Renewing our hope for a better tomorrow that will motivate us all to do...