King James Version (KJV)
13 Then Mordecai commanded to answer Esther, Think not with thyself that thou shalt escape in the king's house, more than all the Jews.
14 For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place; but thou and thy father's house shall be destroyed: and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?
15 Then Esther bade them return Mordecai this answer,
16 Go, gather together all the Jews that are present in Shushan, and fast ye for me, and neither eat nor drink three days, night or day: I also and my maidens will fast likewise; and so will I go in unto the king, which is not according to the law: and if I perish, I perish.
17 So Mordecai went his way, and did according to all that Esther had commanded him.
In The World, But Not of It
Thegets a bad rap sometimes because it does not specifically talk about God. But He is all over the relationships. In the passage above, we see a woman, adopted by her uncle, who's fortunes in life were changed because of who he was as much as who she was.
Esther, or Hadassah, was raised as a daughter in her uncle Mordecai's house. When Vashti was dismissed as queen for her disobedience, there was an opportunity for a new queen. Armed with a new name, and excellent mentoring, Esther became queen.
But her reign wasn't solely self serving. When fortunes changed for her kinsmen, her uncle reminded her that she was at as great a risk as any.
One of the many things that is beautiful about this relationship with this woman and her adoptive father is that even though she sits in the palace, tended by servants who are at her beck and call, she still knows who her father is.
She was queen in a system that not only ran contrary to her upbringing, but at this point was seeking to eliminate her people entirely. By her actions, she showed that she was in the world, but not of it. Who she was didn't change because of where she was.
Believers deal with this on a daily basis. It is so easy to get caught up in the trappings of where we are and let that affect who we are. Why do you think they're called trappings?
When we accept Christ as Savior and Lord, our physical addresses don't change. We still live in the same neighborhoods we did before we confessed and believed. We still have the same jobs, schools, the things around us don't change.
But there is a change on the inside. We are reborn. There is a new man, the spirit man, breathing and living inside of us and that is who we are.
The outside just has to catch up.
This walk of 'in but not of' isn't always easy. Esther understood she was putting her very life on the line. Our Savior forwent His right to defend Himself for the greater good of all of us. On a much smaller, but very personal level, we can feel isolated from the people around us simply because we feel different. We can do the same things they do, but they just don't feel right anymore.
And often, it's because they're not.
If you have been born again, then you are different. It's okay to follow what's different about you. We are a peculiar people, chosen and called out (1 Peter 2:9). So, yeah, the world thinks we're weird because we are to them. But to God, we are special.
If you haven't been born again, there is a destiny waiting for you that goes right through the Heart of God that you cannot reach separate from Him. It's that longing, that void, that hole you feel when you're alone and quiet that you don't want to admit to anyone. And it's just on the other side of receiving salvation. We'll happily assist you in this walk at Fellowship.
King James Version (KJV)
11 For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,
12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;
13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;
14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
15 These things speak, and exhort, and rebuke with all authority. Let no man despise thee.
We're here and we have a work to do. But we're not from here and we won't stay here.
King James Version (KJV)
33 Then Pilate entered into the judgment hall again, and called Jesus, and said unto him, Art thou the King of the Jews?
34 Jesus answered him, Sayest thou this thing of thyself, or did others tell it thee of me?
35 Pilate answered, Am I a Jew? Thine own nation and the chief priests have delivered thee unto me: what hast thou done?
36 Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.
37 Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king then? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.
Peace of the Kingdom while you're here.
Lifeline is produced from the Evangelistic Ministry of in Jonesboro, GA. You are encouraged to share this message. The Fellowship Church website (www.fcchosengeneration.com) includes a link to the Lifeline Blog (www.lifelineatfellowship.blogspot.com) where you can find previous messages.
Evangelist Robinson also posts her entries on Facebook and Twitter. To subscribe to the mailing, or for questions and comments, tweet (@evangeliststeff) or send email to email@example.com. Fellowship Church can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.