Archive for the ‘By Tim Brassell’ Category

The Most Important Priority For Everyone Everywhere! Part 2 (Our Christian/Biblical Worldview)

Part 2A:

Part 2B:

Full Message:


Bible Verses: Colossians ( Various Scriptures)


Introduction:

In a world:

Where people, including those in the Church, are still fighting over the various shades of color of skin,

Where people are seeking to live life in their own made up identities and pushing politicians to identify mainly with their cause,

Where people are exalting their own independence and individualism at the complete cost of their neighbors suffering,

Where the ultimate innocents and vulnerable among us are being aborted at an alarmingly high rate, and,

Where one of the scariest places in all the world to be is a nursing home, and,

Where, in our cities, the murder rate is not only high, but where research shows that most murders are meant to kill…

What hope do we Christians have to share with the world?

Theological Theme:

According to our Christian Hope shared through our Christian Calendar (following the events of God in History), we have entered the season of Advent where we celebrate the fact, specifically, that the Father’s Son came among us as Jesus 2000 years ago, as promised in scripture, and has come and is here again after his resurrection (in the Spirit), and is anticipated to come to earth again, bodily, at his Final Appearing! What does the word Advent mean? It is a word that means “The Coming and the Arrival of something great and important!” For us Christians it means the Coming of Some-One Who is The Greatest and The Most Important Someone, and that Some-One is the Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God the Father, Filled with the Love, Communion and Power of the Holy Spirit!

Christ Connection:

Because of Who Jesus is not only as God, but also as Man, His ministry and comings not only have something to do with His Body the Church, but with all of creation. He is Creator, Reconciler, and Redeemer of All Things spiritual and physical within creation. In His Person and Work He holds all things together, uniting all things as they should be united and giving His entire creation His peace, all evil and destruction having been overcome in His Life, Death and Resurrection to a Life of New Creation!

Biblically this is spelled out in summary form in Colossians 1:

1He is the image of the invisible God,
the firstborn over all creation.
16 For everything was created by him,
in heaven and on earth,
the visible and the invisible,
whether thrones or dominions
or rulers or authorities—

all things have been created through him and for him.
17 He is before all things,
and by him all things hold together.
18 He is also the head of the body, the church;
he is the beginning,
the firstborn from the dead,
so that he might come to have
first place in everything.

19 For God was pleased to have
all his fullness dwell in him,
20 and through him to reconcile
everything to himself,
whether things on earth or things in heaven,
by making peace
through his blood, shed on the cross.

Missional Application:

Like the Apostle Paul, the Church is now eager to share this Good News with the world that it might have its hope and faith in the love of God-Father-Son-Holy-Spirit, also! We encourage the world, and share with all who will listen, that it should repent of its sin and sinful perspective about God, creation and itself, and receive the gift of a new relationship with the Father, in the Spirit and through Jesus Christ, Lord of all Creation:

Colossians 1:

21 Once you were alienated and hostile in your minds as expressed in your evil actions. 22 But now he has reconciled you by his physical body through his death, to present you holy, faultless, and blameless before him— 23 if indeed you remain grounded and steadfast in the faith and are not shifted away from the hope of the gospel that you heard. This gospel has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and I, Paul, have become a servant of it. 24 Now I rejoice in my sufferings for you, and I am completing in my flesh what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for his body, that is, the church. 25 I have become its servant, according to God’s commission that was given to me for you, to make the word of God fully known, 26 the mystery hidden for ages and generations but now revealed to his saints. 27 God wanted to make known among the Gentiles the glorious wealth of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. 28 We proclaim him, warning and teaching everyone with all wisdom, so that we may present everyone mature in Christ. 29 I labor for this, striving with his strength that works powerfully in me.”

Photo Compliments: Dr. Gary Deddo

The Most Important Priority For Everyone Everywhere! Part 1 (Our Christian/Biblical Worldview)

Part 1A:

Part 1B:

Full Message:


Bible Verses: Colossians ( Various Scriptures)


Introduction:

Over the past few Gospel messages we’ve been sharing in the mind of Jesus Christ by reading through the book of Colossians and seeking to grasp all that the Father inspired to be written for the Christians living there under His leading! We have been beholding the complexity of the Father, Son and Spirit’s oversight and purpose for everything, everywhere! Understanding His loving care and concern for our faith, hope and love in Him!  Trusting Him for His loving care and concern for His Church, His Kingdom, and the World at large. Receiving His loving care and concern for all created things as Reconciler and Redeemer of each and all of us who have been negatively impacted by evil and are in a state of recovery from the Fall in Christ our Lord!

We’ve been seeking to understand and have God’s view of what it means to live in and amongst all this complexity, even as the Colossian church members were, too! We are hearing the call of the Lord to continue to let the Truth of our Being (Jesus Christ!) be the Way of our Being, participating with him in his earthly historical life!

Theological Theme:

In Astounding and Inclusive Love the Father has sent and given humanity His Son and Word (Jesus), and gives us His Holy Spirit, that all of humanity might share in His Fellowship as Father, Son and Spirit! How do we receive, trust and live out this relationship in the complex situation going on around us? How do we honor and love God and neighbor while we are still in a becoming state of being more like Jesus? In Colossae, and like us, they were believers who are seeking to relate with Jesus and seeking to understand the Jewish/Christian connections of faith in Jesus Christ! At the same time they are also working, living, and breathing in a particular secular culture that had businesses, educational institutions, gossip, industry, various religions, and therefore various idols and powerful influences that threatened to attack and undermine their faith and trust in Christ!

“Human beings are fallen and therefore subject to temptation and being deceived by evil influences. Fallen, we are also inveterate self-justifiers seeking to maintain our own autonomous righteousness (ethics) apart from the gift of God received by repentance and faith upon hearing the proclamation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ by the ministry of the Holy Spirit.” – Dr. Gary Deddo.

Abba, Father, help and save us through this tension through our Lord Jesus Christ, by Your Spirit!

Christ Connection:

The Good News of the Gospel is that Christ has already overcome this tension, and our fallenness, through his obedience to His Father by the Spirit, from inside our broken human nature. He has turned our human nature around and back to the Father! From his place of Ascension as a glorified human being he now sends, and we receive freely, the Holy Spirit he sends from the Father, giving us a share in his overcoming power through his very own faith and trust poured out in us!

“For the Lord touched all parts of creation, and freed and undeceived them all from every deceit.”
― St. Athanasius, On the Incarnation

Missional Application:

Jesus is the only hope for all, not just Christians! As Jesus encounters and empowers us believers in our relationship with him, we call upon pre-believers to place their faith and trust in Jesus by the Spirit – calling on them to repent, be baptized, deny themselves and pick up their cross, following Jesus!

“The problem of pursing a life of moral faithfulness is not simply a matter of discerning what God’s will is—as if simply knowing it, figuring it out, takes care of it. The barriers are much greater. No earnest pursuit of moral faithfulness to Jesus Christ will come to fruition unless the Holy Spirit in conjunction with the Word of God, breaks down our resistance to the Word and the Spirit and kills our self-justifying pride that resists repentance and faith in Jesus Christ and his Word.” – Dr. Gary Deddo

Photo Compliments:

http://www.thegospelcoalition.org

Becoming An Ethically Responsible Christian Disciple! Part 4 (Our Christian/ Biblical Worldview)

Part 4A:

Part 4B:

Full Message:


Bible Verses: Colossians (various scriptures)


Introduction:

In Jesus, God’s Elect One, you and every other person you know have been elected/chosen to be at the highest place of honor and privilege possible for a human being, participating with Jesus in his union and relationship with His Father, in the Holy Spirit. In fact, all of what it means to be truly and fully human is seated, truly and mysteriously, with the Father, and in Jesus who share in our humanity. Jesus represents and substitutes for each and all of us human beings before the Father not so we don’t have to participate but so that we can, with him!

Theological Theme:

Because of the Reality of Jesus in our humanity, now glorified, we are invited and urged to share more deeply in in the humanity of Christ by the Spirit Christ than in the divided humanity of those who reject God! In the worshipful and relational way of Jesus, we who trust and believe in him, prioritize and live out the Great Command to love God with our all, first, and then, at His direction and lead in the Spirit, to love our neighbors as ourselves.

As the late George MacDonald has written: “God can no more than an earthly parent be content to have only children: he must have sons and daughters—children of his soul, of his spirit, of his love—not merely in the sense that he loves them, or even that they love him, but in the sense that they love like him, love as he loves. For this he does not adopt them; he dies to give them himself, thereby to raise his own to his heart; he gives them a birth from above; they are born again out of himself and into himself.” ― George MacDonald

Christ Connection:

There is a call from the Father for us to be different and to be transformed in Christ in the Holy Spirit; to begin and keep becoming and growing up in Him, right here and right now! To keep sharing in the mind of Christ about our world, that we are forever going to be relating with and oversee with Jesus in a larger more fulfilling way! We’re not in a pretend mode right now just because everything here on earth will one day be transformed! In believers, and by the Holy Spirit, Jesus has an earthly body that still resides in our present history, interacting with his Father and our neighbors in love. Obeying Jesus right now is as vital as it was vital when he actually walked the earth in his distinct human body because he is the Risen Lord and still has an ongoing and present ministry!

Missional Application:

Jesus, being our Great Ethic, has pointed out what it means to participate with him in relation to God and our neighbor:

A lawyer asked [Jesus] a question to test him. “Teacher, which commandment in the law is the greatest?” He said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the greatest and first commandment. And a second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” (Matt. 22:35-40, NRSV)

As Dr. Gary Deddo points out in his article “Theological Ethics”:

“When we love God with all we are and have, there shines forth a reflection of it towards those who are not God. We love God because God first loved us (1 John 4:19). Our love for God is a response, the right and appropriate response, to God’s love for us. We first receive God’s love and we first love God. When we love the neighbor in the way God would have us, then like Jesus, we are passing on to others what we have received from God. Think of the offering of the Lord’s Supper and Paul’s words: “For I received from the Lord what I also handed on to you” (1 Cor. 11:23). In God’s economy, we can pass on only what we have first received. First things must remain first, otherwise, as C.S. Lewis reminds us, we will lose both the first and the second things.”

Photo Compliments: https://www.quoteslyfe.com

Becoming An Ethically Responsible Christian Disciple! Part 3 (Our Christian/ Biblical Worldview)

Part 3A:

Part 3B:

Full Message:


Bible Verses: Colossians (various scriptures)


Introduction:

“How Do I Become An Ethically Responsible Christian Disciple?” That is the question this series is trying to answer as it lays the foundations of this sermon firmly on THE Foundation of Jesus Christ, Himself, in his Person and Work. As we face the “waves and pounding surf” of the bad philosophies and false ideas and ideologies of this world, we need not be shaken because our house is built upon a rock, THE Rock, Jesus Christ! We are encouraged by the Lord Jesus to be careful how we build. The Lord Jesus Christ in calling you to Himself in His relationship with His Father does so that you might know Him and, incredibly, share in his very mind with him! NOT sharing in a mind like his, but sharing in his very own mind, in the Spirit!

Theological Theme:

“Ethics” is a way of understanding how we are to relate to our neighbors, horizontally, in the light of Who Jesus is and Who we are in Him, as we seek to glorify the Father with Jesus! As those who trust him, Jesus Christ is our Ethic! When we are directly relating to God, that’s worship. When we are relating directly to our neighbor for God’s sake, that is ethics, or witnessing to and participating with the God we worship in His love toward others.

Christ Connection:

In one paradoxical way of putting it, Christian ethics are really the end of ethics as we once thought of them! We’re no longer centered on proclaiming a nice, neatly-packaged system of rule-keeping, laws or instructions, as if that is what the bible/Christian life primarily is. We’re now centered solely on the Rule-Keeper, the Law-Giver, and THE Loving Instructor – Jesus Christ, Himself! He is our Ethic! In an intimate relationship with Him he guides and leads us by the Holy Spirit, even in the minutiae of everyday living, that we might participate with Him in glorifying His Father in a human way! In Jesus we are becoming a repetition of Jesus and His Father in an earthly way by the Spirit!

Missional Application:

The Father sent his Son Jesus into the world because of his great love for the world. John 3:16. This love for the world is what we seek to participate in both within and outside the Church in participation with Jesus and the Father. This quote from Henri Nouwen is written with just this kind of love for others in mind:

“For Jesus, there are no countries to be conquered, no ideologies to be imposed, no people to be dominated. There are only children, women and men to be loved.” — Henri Nouwen

Photo Compliments:

http://www.amazinglovehawaii.com

Becoming An Ethically Responsible Christian Disciple! Part 2 (Our Christian/ Biblical Worldview)

Part 2A:

Part 2B:

Full Message:


Bible Verses: Colossians (various scriptures)


Introduction:

Because Jesus Himself is our Ethic (our humanity living properly among his neighbors and glorifying the Father), ethics is the free gift of God given to us in Jesus Christ. Christian ethics are not a way to earn God’s love or a way to earn salvation through human works and achievements. It is the gift of participating with Jesus in his human life by Grace! Jesus is God’s Grace to us! Ethics is what it means to participate with Jesus in living his life in this world by the Spirit!

Theological Theme:

You begin life as a child but only so you can grow up into an adult. Similarly, through your union and participation with Jesus, by the Spirit, you are in the state of growing up and becoming a little Christ who glorifies the Father.

Christ Connection:

Jesus is the One Who stands in our human place and lives life in this world with our human nature and on our behalf in a renewing way that brings and gives us revitalized human life, destroying sin completely. He Himself, then, is our Ethic. He is the way we are called to live! Jesus is our proper human response to God and our neighbor! He is the only true Learner of God, and the only human fully obedient to the Father, AND he was and is this so that we might participate with him, glorifying the Father!

Missional Application:

As members of Christ and as people in this world, Christians have a dual citizenship. We have a complex responsibility – the response-ability of Christ, by the Spirit, to be equipped for the works of Christ’s service in the spheres of the Church, the Kingdom, and the State. The goal and mandate is to prioritize our relationship with God, and then, at his direction and under his authority over all, to love everyone, pointing them, through his mission, to him that they too may be in union and participation with him.

Photo Compliments: www. justbetweenus.org

Becoming An Ethically Responsible Christian Disciple! Part 1 (Our Christian/ Biblical Worldview)

Part 1A:

Part 1B

Full Message:


Bible Verses: Colossians 2, Colossians 3: 17, 23


Introduction:

This messages proclaims Jesus and clarifies the Christian Worldview as given to us by Jesus through his Apostles in scripture. It seeks to help us have a “pair of glasses” that we might, in the Father’s grace, know how we ought to see, be and act in participation with Christ by His Divine Commands shared with us in the Holy Spirit.

Theological Theme:

As members of of the Body of Christ and people in this world, the Church has a dual citizenship! We are participants of the Kingdom of Heaven and citizens of the human family on earth.

Christ Connection:

In the Person and Work of Jesus, our human nature lives out its human life in a full and proper response to the Father by the Spirit. In Jesus we are also graciously given how it is we are to love our neighbors as ourselves as we minister to the Father in the Spirit.

Every Christian has a complex responsibility – the response-ability of Christ by the Spirit – through which we are equipped by Jesus through His Church for the works of his service to His Father, on behalf of the world!

We live, move and have our being in relation to the FSS in these three spheres:

  • As participants in the sphere of the Church, with Faith in Jesus! (the Church is NOT the Kingdom)
  • As participants in the sphere of the Kingdom, in Hope for its fullness! (the Kingdom is NOT the Church)
  • As participants in the world, with the Love Jesus shares! We all live in and participate in the sphere of Human Authority – Government, State, Jobs (seeking to love our neighbor with Christ and at his direction and inspiration)

Missional Application:

Our life in the World is primarily one of Love – not as defined by Santa Clause, but defined by Jesus Christ – self-giving, other-centered, and self-sacrificing toward God, first, and, at his direction, toward others! We are to teach others and disciple them the way Jesus teaches and disciples us. The way Jesus loved the world in the scriptures is the same way He still loves the world in and through His people who trust him, to the glory of His Father in the Holy Spirit!

What Are You Doing For Christ’s Sake? Part 2

Part 2A:

Part 2B:

Full Message:


Bible Verses: Colossians 3:17, 23


Introduction:

Jesus, in his person and work, as God the Son who comes to live inside our humanity IS who and what it means for humans to glorify God and enjoy Him forever as human beings! He is the One true human being Whom the Father envisioned we would all share in to know him, glorify him, and enjoy him forever, in the communion of the Holy Spirit! To live as distinct persons from Jesus but in union with him, sharing in his character in the communion of the Holy Spirit, is what it means to be a real human being! This is what Christians mean when we say that Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life, and that we have received him in the Spirit! Jesus is the Way to the Father, the Truth of the Father, and the Life of the Father in flesh. His claim to fame as a human being is his claim of being free for obedience, in relationship with His Father. As the True Human Being, he loves the Father with all of His heart, soul, mind and strength and, at the Father’s direction and pouring out of the Holy Spirit upon him, he loves his neighbor as himself, and more than he loves himself! This means that most of Jesus’ life is spent on attending to others in love and that he is not primarily self-centered, loving himself! He is primarily Father-centered and then centered on others at the direction of the Father.

Because Jesus sends us his Spirit that we might participate with him in his human life, the question then comes to us, and instructs us: SO, WHO ARE YOU BEING, AND WHAT ARE YOU DOING, AND WHAT WILL YOU DO WITH CHRIST FOR CHRIST AND THE FATHER’S SAKE?

Theological Theme:

The heart and foundation of God’s Good News is Jesus Himself in our place as our Human Substitute and Representative Who glorifies and honors the Father in loving relationship! He sends the Holy Spirit to us so that we can now be response-able with Jesus, to the Father, in union and participation with him in the Holy Spirit This is what it means to Worship God, Know God, Serve God, Have Jesus’ Peace and to share in Jesus’ actual Joy! Authentic, zestful, vibrant human life is for us to actually share with Jesus in His worship of God the Father in the Holy Spirit!

WHAT WILL YOU DO WITH CHRIST FOR CHRIST’S SAKE?! (THE FATHER’S SAKE?!)

Christ Connection:

You were created by the Father-Son-Holy-Spirit-God, you did not create yourself! The Father God says to you: I made you for me, to be aligned and matched up with me, and to dwell with me forever! I am of a particular way and type and style, utterly unique and incomparable – in all the best ways ever! Though you are not me, nor ever will be me, you are designed in such a way as to match up with me perfectly in my relationship as Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Because you each and all have sinned and turned from me, falling short of my glory, in grace and mercy, in compassion and at forgiveness, and at great cost to Myself, I have assumed and taken on your fallen human nature in My Son, Jesus!

Jesus continues his Father’s word to us saying, in essence: “In being human I have lived your life in alignment with our Father. In suffering, and at great cost to myself. I say to you that I have borne the cost of your turning from me by taking on your rejection and its consequences into myself, rejecting your rejection of me, and I have bent your fallen human nature into full and willing submission to my Father! In dying, I died your death, killing that which was killing you! Where evil had entrenched itself in you, and in places and ways you’ll never know, I have obliterated evil at its very being and source, and freed you from its bondage and malevolent presence and power. I have undone and am undoing what evil has done with lies and deception to undermine your great purpose to be eternally with me and my Father in the Holy Spirit as our adopted sons and daughters! In rising from the tomb on the 3rd day as THE resurrection, I have raised up and vivified and enlivened your humanity, renewing it in my own risenness. I have set your life and all of creation, personal and impersonal, on a whole new basis, a life of New Creation in Me! I have ascended and remain ascended right now with your reconciled and redeemed human nature and, in Me, you have complete and total victory over all the powers and principalities, over all pandemics, prejudices, and brutalities of every kind including police brutalities! In me and in my grace alone you have total victory over all broken Governments and powers, even if for awhile you must suffer and even die. 

The Holy Spirit of Jesus says to you “I mean what I inspired in Colossians 1:24 ‘You serve the Lord Jesus Christ’, the one and only Son of the Father Who is at the very center of your life’s being and activity, urging you to let go of your right to yourself and encouraging you to surrender all your rights to me! Let me love you and bless you, and free you from your self-centeredness and into Jesus’ overflowing life of Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self-Control! You can trust Me because I empower you! Will you trust me and BE empowered?!”

Missional Application:

As we share with other family, friends and neighbors this Good News of Jesus, we invite them as the Spirit guides to join us in having communion with the Lord even now – to sup with him and the Father in the Holy Spirit, and in His Faith, Hope and Love!

Here is a helpful thing to remember about the Lord’s Supper (or Communion, or the Eucharist), taken from Grace Communion International’s “We Believe” curriculum exploring the core beliefs of our Christian faith:

8.9 What is required of people when they come to receive the Lord’s Supper?
That in response to the proclamation of the Word of God, they come to receive the grace of God made available to all through Jesus Christ. They are to come to the Table with open hearts ready to be identified with Christ, ready to depend upon him, ready to follow him, ready to give up whatever stands in the way of living out of trust in him and in his Word to them. Coming to his Table, they will have repented of their sins and be ready to leave behind any sin that might be revealed even at the Table. They will come intending to follow the lead of the Holy Spirit to depend on Christ and his faithfulness. Above all, they will receive Christ anew, rejoicing in the gift of communion they can have with him and through him with the Father and the Spirit. They will do so looking forward to Jesus’ return and the coming of the fullness of the kingdom of God. (1 Cor. 11:27-32)

Photo Compliments: Twitter – http://www.TheNLT.com

What Are You Doing For Christ’s Sake? Part 1

Part 1A:

Part 1B:

Full Message:

Watch On YouTube!

Bible Verses: Colossians 3: 17, 23 Colossians 1


Introduction:

God-Father-Son-Holy-Spirit does what He does for the sake of the other, He is other-centered. The Father does what he does for His Son. His Son, Jesus does what He does for His Father. The Spirit does what He does for the Father and Son. God in Christ gives Himself through His Son and the Spirit for humanity and creation.

Jesus is what it means for humans to glorify God and enjoy Him forever. To live as distinct persons with the character of Jesus Christ, in the communion of the Holy Spirit, is what it means to be a real human being! This is what we mean when we Christians say that Jesus is the Way, the Truth and the Life! His claim to fame as a man is the claim of being free for obedience to His Father, Whom He loves with all of His heart, soul, mind and strength that he might love his neighbor more than he loves himself!

The question then comes to us, and instructs us: SO, WHO ARE YOU BEING, AND WHAT ARE YOU DOING, AND WHAT WILL YOU DO FOR CHRIST’S SAKE?!

Theological Theme:

The heart and foundation of the Gospel is to be response-able with Jesus, to the Father, in union and participation with him in the Holy Spirit This is what it means to Worship God. Worship is to share with Jesus in His worship of God by the Spirit!

WHAT WILL YOU DO WITH CHRIST FOR CHRIST’S SAKE?!

Christ Connection:

THE STANDARD FOR HUMAN LIFE IS CHRIST JESUS, AND CHRIST ALONE!

IN THE MOST FUNDAMENTAL AND PERSONAL AND RELATIONAL SENSE, THEOLOGY AND CHRISTOLOGY are not your standard for life, DOCTRINE is not your standard for life, being full of good works IS not your standard for life, Good morals and ethics are not your standard for life! The Church is not your standard for life! And certainly, if those good thing aren’t your standard for life, then resisting God, sinning, self-centeredness, and the way of the world apart from Christ are most definitely not your standard for life either! JESUS (PLUS NOTHING) IS YOUR STANDARD FOR LIFE!

The Good News of The Gospel is that Jesus, as both God and Man in one person, is and always be, and should be at the center of your life. Jesus is your Lord and Savior who accepts you unconditionally where you are, no matter how foul, bad, rebellious you are or have been, but only to take you where he is going and to make a little Christ of you!

THE standard for your life is Jesus Christ alone and as such does warn us about rejecting him and his Father and the Holy Spirit. He does, in the Holy Spirit, teach us not to sin and he does help us become other centered rather than self-centered. As THE standard, Jesus Christ tells us that we do have victory over the spirit of the world and the world itself through our faith in him – Jesus Christ – THE standard, THE way, THE truth and THE life!

JESUS + NOTHING is YOUR standard for life so:

Q: What are you doing by the Spirit in the Father’s grace for Christ’s sake?

A: Your responses and participation with Jesus in his faith, hope and love by the Spirit is the Father’s gift to you that he might be glorified – reflected in your life to your ultimate joy! 1 Cor 13

Missional Application:

Jesus was sent to us by the Father to participate with him in his mission to draw everyone in the world to His Father and Himself. Jesus sends us the Holy Spirit that we may participate with him in going out beyond ourselves to others who do not know and receive him. WHAT WILL YOU DO FOR CHRIST’S SAKE?!

The ministry of the Holy Spirit is personal and personally transforming—it is dynamic and interactive, bringing about receptivity, responsiveness and participation. And the result is that we are on a journey towards spiritual maturity and full sanctification, being changed into the likeness of Christ. But this journey is not automatic, causal, or impersonal. It is not mechanically imposed on all believers, much less on all human persons (including non-believers). Since personal (subjective) receptivity and participation do make a difference, much of the New Testament indicates the differences it makes and encourages, exhorts and even commands us to be receptive to the Word of God and the ministry of the Spirit out of trust in God’s faithfulness through the Son and in the Spirit.” – Dr Gary Deddo

Conclusion:

Our personal response (or lack thereof) to God cannot undo the fact that Jesus is and remains Lord and Savior of all. The character and purpose, mind and heart of God remain just as they have been revealed in Christ. The finished work of Christ is never undone—God remains, in Christ, reconciled to all people, no matter their response. He has and holds out forgiveness for them, is ready to receive them back into fellowship with him, and in that sense accepts them. However, while God accepts them, he does not accept their rejection, their sin, their rebellion, but accepts them in order to do away with what is against them and against their participation in the reconciliation accomplished for them in Christ. Nothing changes that reconciliation (with all it means), not even a person’s complete or partial rejection of God’s gift. However, our personal response (participation) does affect the quality of our lived relationship with God and thus our personal experiencing of the benefits of Christ.– Dr Gary Deddo

Photo Compliments: Twitter – http://www.TheNLT.com

To Live Is Christ, To Die Is Gain!

Part A:

Part B:

Full Message:

Watch On YouTube

Bible Verse: Philippians 1


Introduction:

You exist because the Father of our brother, Jesus Christ, is determined to love you, and refuses to let any of us go! Nothing going on can outmatch or outwit the the Holy Spirit in His love for you and us! Indeed not! He came to save and empower you, and God alone has raised up and called a Church to be a peculiar people to keep witnessing to Him, even at the cost of its suffering and dying! As we do this we are salt and light that preserves and illuminates God’s cause and purposes on the earth.

Theological Theme:

Because God made and oversees the entire world, Christians can and should be involved in politics and can even, by God’s leading, participate in the organizations of this world such as Black Lives matter. We can be in but NOT OF the world as we seek to witness to it about Jesus Christ. In a relationship with the Father we can discern how we should vote as Christians and how it is we are to support a cause, whether Black Lives Matter or any other cause! 

Christ Connection:

As the King of all who is both God and Man in one person we are for and against politics in this world! We’re FOR Jesus who is King of all, and we’re therefore against all that Jesus is against, and against that which is against him! Primarily Jesus is against all that are against Him because he is for them! To be against Jesus is to be against ourselves!

We can and should also speak out about race but in the special Christian understanding that there is only one human race taken up by Christ into the Love and Life of the Father-Son-Holy-Spirit-God in Christ – Colossians 3:10-11! In him we have put on the new self. Those who walk with Christ in a trust relationship are being renewed in knowledge according to the image of our Creator. In Christ there is not Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, slave and free; but Christ is all and in all. Because of that truth in Jesus we’re also against racism because all “isms” are idols – things abstracted from Jesus Christ!

Missional Application:

The goal of our Father for you is nothing less than a share in the life of Jesus Christ himself! The goal of our Father for y/our neighbors and all human persons is nothing less than a share in Jesus Christ himself; Nothing less than what God has revealed and fulfilled in Jesus Christ! Are you/we seeking his will or are you/we seeking y/our own will? Any starting or ending with ourselves is not the love of God, but is still self love. However, empowered by the holy Spirit we are called to trust in and participate with the self-giving God who reaches out to others, that they may know and relate with him too, so we live and share the Good News of Jesus and the God revealed in him in word and deed!

Photo Compliments: youngdisciples.org

Once “Works FOR God”, Now “Fruit FROM God!” (And by ‘God’ we mean The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit – God)

Part A:

Part B:

Full Message:

Watch On YouTube

Bible Verses: Galatians 3: 27-29, Galatians 5: 16-26


Introduction:

It’s possible to coerce or even force someone to do something, but for an action to be meaningful and fulfilling, it must be done because the person wanted to. This is the key difference between behavior modification and heart change, changing our actions versus changing our motivations underneath our actions. In the letter to the Galatians, especially concerning the fruit of the Spirit in chapter 5, Paul taught on GRACE, WORKS, and PERSONAL TRANSFORMATION in the light of the gospel. What we do certainly matters, but WHY we do what we do matters even more.

If you’re a Christian, you will obey because you want to obey, not because you have to. The Spirit of God living inside of us ensures it. We will bear good fruit. This doesn’t make us sinless, but it does make us sure of spiritual growth and it does make us more conscious and convicted of our sin. This Gospel-driven way of living means that we ourselves are a Gospel project, always being developed and shaped by the Gospel – Jesus! And it means that we are always acknowledging that the changes in us have not come primarily through our own efforts but through the Spirit of Christ working in us. We don’t get the glory. The Father does.

Theological Theme:

The fact that the gospel begins and ends with Jesus Christ, means that the gospel is PRIMARILY about the Father’s commitment to YOU! The Father receiving/ including YOU (our human nature) PERSONALLY into His love and life through Jesus and by the Spirit. The Father’s Faith and repentance on YOUR behalf in Christ. Secondarily it is about you being committed to Him and your faith and repentance towards Him.

Christians crucify the flesh and walk by the Spirit who, too, is God of GOD [ Father -Son and Holy Spirit]. The Spirit is the one poured out on Jesus Christ without limit, and the one who Jesus pours out on us human beings so that we might participate with Him in who He is and what He is doing. By the Spirit we participate with Jesus in His worship of The Father and in His witness to this world that His Kingdom is already in our midst, and that his rule and reign are yet coming in full!

Christ Connection:

In contrasting the works of the flesh with the fruit of the Spirit, Paul showed the Galatian church what it looks like to belong to Christ Jesus. To be crucified with Christ means to put away our fleshly passions and desires and to follow the Spirit.

Walking after Christ – with Christ, by the Spirit, means Christ leads and by the Spirit we follow Him and move in that same direction that He indicates. When we walk by The Spirit we go where He goes, we live how He lives and how He directs us to live. Walking by the Spirit can be frustrating but it doesn’t have to be that way because we have been gifted by God through Jesus and in the Spirit, to be able to see through the eyes of FAITH. If you are to walk by the Spirit you will need to spend more time with the Spirit, reading and studying and meditating on Jesus Christ through scripture by the Spirit. The Spirit mediates Jesus and Jesus will meet you in and through scripture by His grace.

“We are not to challenge and envy one another. We are to get down from our high chairs and start walking in the Spirit. The Christian life is not a balloon ascension with some great overpowering experience of soaring to the heights. Rather it is a daily walk; it is a matter of putting one foot ahead of the other, in dependence upon the Holy Spirit.” –J. Vernon McGee

Missional Application:

God calls us to follow the Spirit in humility as we develop Christian character that sets us apart from the world.

As the Holy Spirit produces the fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control within us, we will also see that our external actions will change too. A person who is loving will act in love with others. A person who is joyful will act joyfully before others. Being leads to doing. And in this case, when we are changed to be more like God on the inside, we will live more like Him on the outside.

“It is in the midst of difficulties and hardships that we especially need the fruit of the Spirit, and it is in such times that God may especially work through us to touch other people for Christ. As we bear the fruit of the Spirit in our lives, others will see in us ‘the family likeness of his Son’ (Rom. 8:29, Phillips) and be attracted to the Saviour.” –Billy Graham

Conclusion:

The power of our obedience and the source of our holiness is not our own efforts but the effort of the Holy Spirit applying to our lives the finished work of Jesus Christ. It’s God who works in you to will and to work for His good pleasure! Your participation with Christ in his good works were ordained beforehand. The same gospel that empowers our conversion empowers our sanctification. It is Jesus who both authors and perfects our faith. It is God alone who is faithful both to start the work in us and to complete it. Jesus Himself is our Sanctification!

Of course, it’s not that we don’t expend any energy. We have to remember that “grace is not opposed to effort, but is opposed to earning.”  Instead, it is simply that the energy we use to obey from our hearts for the pleasure of God comes from God’s Spirit. Here is how Paul explained the source of righteousness in Galatians 5:22-26: “22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24 And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. 26 Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.”

Photo Compliments: http://www.antiochpeople.org

%d bloggers like this: