by James Merritt

This content is part of a series.

Simple Connection (2 of 4)
Series: Follow the Leader
James Merritt
Matthew 9:35-38


1. Experts in criminology say it is absolutely the worst form of punishment you can give to any prisoner. There are many people who even say it is cruel and unusual punishment. It is torture and it should be banned. No, it is not pulling out fingernails and toenails with pliers or dipping people in hot acid or even covering someone with honey and letting insects feed on them. The worst form of punishment is solitary confinement.

2. There is nothing more devastating to the human psyche than complete and total isolation. The reason for that is we were created for relationships.

3. Go all the way back to the first chapter of Genesis and you will find that human beings were put on this earth in order to cultivate and develop two types of relationships. The first is our vertical relationship with God and second is our horizontal relationship with other people.

4. That is the order of priority. God did not create the man and the woman together in the beginning. In the beginning, it was just the man and God, because from the beginning God wanted every human being to know that your ''number one relationship is to be with Me''. It is only when you have a right relationship with God that you will truly know how to have a right relationship with others.

5. It goes even deeper. When you have a relationship with God, you want to establish a relationship with others, so that you can bring them into a relationship with God. That is why we are in a series of messages we are calling, ''Follow the Leader.'' The very reason that Jesus came to planet earth was to show people who God is and to show people what a relationship with God looks like.

6. Most people are pretty familiar with the last week in the life of Jesus. They are familiar about His trial, His crucifixion and resurrection. What about the other 155 weeks of His life? What did He spend His time doing? ...

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