Our youth group scheduled a last minute visit to a nearby high school to see John Jac0bs’ Next Generation Power Team tonight. Their main focus is to perform/speak at schools. In fact, I saw a previous Power Team at my high school years ago.
I have to admit I was a little skeptical. I have seen them twice before and although it’s amazing every time, it seemed a little bit corny to go see a third time. But let me tell you, they were amazing. And let me also tell you, it wasn’t simply the water bottle busting, the phone book tearing or the breaking of a baseball bat over one’s leg by shear power but their testimony was simply moving. There were close to 100 people that went forward to accept Christ at the end. I was moved simply by the movement of the Holy Spirit in the others. Their presentation was so clear and direct yet said in a way that an 8 year old could understand. In fact, I would say a good 10-20 of the people were under 12.
There are two stories, one true and one not, that they told that were excellent pictures of what Christ does for us that I hope I remember for a long time.
One is a (imaginary) story of a man that gets a speeding ticket. He knows he’s guilty and admits so to the police officer. The police officer says ok, you pay $2 million or you go to jail for life. The guilty man knows even if he called everyone and every bank he knows, he could not come up with $2 million. So he has resigned himself to spending life in jail. A man pulls up, walks up to the car and says he will pay for the ticket, every ticket he’s every had and also any ticket that he may get in the future. So the guilty man just has to decide whether the guy is crazy or to accept his gift and let the officer put it toward his account.
Now this story is false but in a sense it is quite a realistic picture of us and Christ. We are all sinners, unfit to enter into Heaven and unable to repay any debt of sin we have. Christ died on the cross for us and became our payment for our debt of sin. All we have to do is decide to let him be our payment. It is a choice we make.
Isn’t that a story that makes it so easy for even a child to understand? They learn the idea of doing “bad stuff” and going to jail so early and then to be able to apply it to what Christ did for us is amazing.
The next story is a true story. It is of a man that goes to a barn sale and buys a Harley for $800. It doesn’t run but he wants it for a keepsake. One day he decides to get it running and takes it to a local Harley shop to get an estimate. That afternoon the shop calls the guy and offers $50,000 for the bike. The guy is confused, but realizes something is important about the bike and declines the offer. They call him back that night and offer $75,000, no questions asked. He again, realizing there is something up, declines. The next morning he gets a call from Jay Leno, yes, THE Jay Leno and he offers $200,000 for the bike. He declines again. Leno then offers $250,000. The guy confused says, the bike is not for sale but please tell me what is going on with the bike. Leno explains and says Well, apparently, Harleys have a serial number under the seat and when the Harley shop had pulled the seat up, it said something to the effect of Sold Property of EP. They looked up the serial number and it was previously owned by Elvis Presley. So John Jac0bs at this point asks us what makes the difference between a bike yesterday being worth $800 and then the next the same bike being worth $250 million. Simply, knowing the owner. We find our worth when we decide to accept the payment Christ offers and live our life knowing who owns us. Knowing the God of the universe has our best interest at heart and leads us to the life He has planned for us. We can stand tall and know we are worth something.
That message, as simple as it is, the simple gospel was more powerful than any sermon I’ve heard recently.
Check out their web site, invite them into your schools. They do it all for free on donations given by churches. It could change your schools, your city, maybe even your life.