THE LIVING WORD TRNSCRIPT
Program Air Date – 10-9-11
LESSON TITLE: “WHAT GOD HAS JOINED TOGETHER: A CHRISTIAN AND CHRISTIAN LIVING”
In John 3:17 we read, “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” How wonderful it is to know that God came to save the world from the sin which destroys us.
Welcome to our program and let me thank you all for joining us this day for this time of Worship to our God. It is my prayer that we are all doing our best, today and every day, to accomplish everything according to God’s precious will and His eternal purpose. Won’t you do your part this morning so that God may truly be praised and so that all we offer toward His throne will be done in spirit and in truth.
With these thoughts in mind, will you bow with me before His almighty throne in prayer?
Now it’s time to join in our first song of the morning. Our first hymn of the day reminds us that our Redeemer is truly alive! So, won’t you join in with the congregation at this time as we sing together, “I Know That My Redeemer Lives?”
(SONG # 1)
As we have already considered this morning, our Lord came to this earth that all of mankind might be saved. It is further interesting to understand how all these things came about. There is one verse in the Bible which summarizes the life of Jesus perhaps better than any other, that is 1 Timothy 3:16. There we read, “And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifested in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen by angels, preached among the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up in glory.” This verse takes us from the birth and coming of Christ through the proofs of His life which proclaimed Him to be the Son of God. And finally it returns us to the fact that our Lord has now returned to His heavenly abode!
Now the question we might ask is why did he do all of this? Well the answer again lies in our first text of the morning, “that the world through Him might be saved.” Remember the beloved and familiar passage in John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” Our Lord and Savior came to this earth that we might believe unto obedience. That through this obedience, we might be saved and thus receive the great reward of eternal life! Have you yet responded to the love of God in your life? Or do you need to obey your Savior and receive the gift which so freely has been offered to all who believe? I pray that you will get your life right with God today!
As far as our speaker of the day, we are happy to again have brother Jerry Sullins with us. As you know, brother Jerry is the Director of the Bible Institute of Missouri, here in Springfield. We thank brother Sullins for being with us this day and we look forward to him guiding our thoughts from God’s Word.
Our topic of study this day, will be a continuation of our discussion entitled, “What God Has Joined Together.” Our specific lesson of the morning is called, “A Christian and Christian Living.” So please stay with us this morning and after our next song together, brother Jerry Sullins will be leading us in this study of the day. But for now let’s join together in our second song of the morning. The name of this hymn, “I Need Thee Every Hour.”
(SONG # 2)
By Jerry Sullins
It’s a pleasure to have you in the broadcast of “The Living Word” and we are so thankful that you view this program, many of you every Sunday morning. It gives us the courage to continue this good work and we pray only that God’s Word can sound forth to our listening audience and that people will have a better knowledge of what God’s Will is for them. You know Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. No man cometh unto the Father but by Me.” He also said that the only way we can get to the Father is by doing His Will. Well the only way I know to know His Will is to study the Word of God and so we study to show ourselves approved unto God, workmen that needeth not to be ashamed, handling aright the Word of Truth, as Paul gave that young preacher, Timothy, the instruction. So it’s a pleasure for us to have you here this morning. We hope that what we say will certainly encourage you in living a Christian life or encourage you to become a Christian. There is no greater life on this earth than the life that one can live for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
We’re carrying the theme throughout the next few weeks concerning things that are joined together in the Bible. Many things like faith and works, that is also salvation as it relates to baptism and other things you cannot just separate.
This morning for your consideration, we’re going to be discussing from God’s Word the subject of being a Christian and how that being a Christian cannot be separated from living the Christian life. Some people are under the concept today that you can become a child of God, you can believe that Jesus is the Christ, you can repent of your sins, you can confess His precious name, you can be baptized into Christ for the remission of your sins and still live any kind of life that you want to live after you become a Christian and still be saved by the grace of God. Well Paul, once and for all determined that that’s not the truth or said that that’s not the truth in the book of Galatians when he said that it is possible for us to fall from grace. So what does that mean? That means that when we become a Christian something is expected of us.
I call your attention to what Paul said to Titus in Titus chapter 2, verse 11. He said, “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared unto all men teaching us that denying ungodliness and worldly lust we should live soberly, righteously and godly in this present world.” There’s no doubt in my mind that when one becomes a Christian, and even before one becomes a Christian, they would believe and must expect that God is going to expect something out of them after they once become one of His and that is that they live a Christian life. Otherwise why would Jesus have said in Revelation 2 verse 10, “Be faithful unto death and I will give you a crown of life.” So He teaches us that we should deny ungodliness and worldly lust and we ought to walk soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world.
Let us look at what Paul said in Colossians chapter 3 which I believe this series of scriptures alone and as we discuss it will show us beyond a shadow of a doubt that you cannot separate a Christian from his responsibility to live the Christian life. They just cannot be separated. Paul said in these first three verses of Colossians 3, “If then you are raised with Christ, seek those things which are above where Christ is sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things of the earth for you died and your life is hidden with Christ in God.” We died. Well what did we die to? As Paul said in the book of Romans chapter 6, “we become dead to our sins.” “In the grave of baptism,” Romans 6 verse 3-4, “we are buried with Him by the likeness of His death into the likeness of His resurrection,” and if we have been buried in the likeness of His death then we shall be buried in the likeness of His resurrection. That’s when we get rid of our sins. We come up, as it is stated in that very same chapter, as new people, new creatures, dedicated to being servants of righteousness. Paul taught that there. And he said here even in the book of Colossians chapter 3, “If we have indeed been raised with Christ, that is if we’ve been baptized and we’ve been raised to walk in that newness of life we have set our mind on things above not on things which are on this earth.”
Let’s say this, and I want to say this to every Christian in this listening or viewing audience today. We have a responsibility. We have a God-given responsibility to live as God desires that we live on the face of this earth. In fact, Jesus spoke of that responsibility in many different ways and spoke of it in parables and spoke of it in other statements that He made concerning the fact that we’ve been given gifts by Jesus, gifts as Christians. They’re called talents in the Bible. Remember the story of the five talent man or the two talent man and the one talent man? The reason the one talent man was not justified even though he had that talent is in the fact that he did not use that talent. That talent or that ability that God had given him in usefulness in the kingdom of God. Yes, every ability that we have as a Christian brings a responsibility. In fact, when we become a Christian we are saved by the blood of Christ and immediately take upon the responsibility of doing the work of Him who has sent us while it is day for the night comes when no man can work.
Now in Romans chapter 12 in verses 5-7 the apostle Paul mentioned several different non-miraculous gifts. There he was encouraging the brethren at Rome to use the gifts that God had given them so that they might see the kingdom advance and so that they might encourage one another to live the life that Christ wanted them to live.
My friend, my fellow Christian and servant in Christ, definitely I can say that when you become a Christian, and especially when I became a Christian, I made a commitment to be a good example. Did we not? Did we not take on Christ? Did we not clothe ourselves with Christ? Did we not take a commitment that we would live the Christian life? If not, someone didn’t teach you properly because when one becomes a Christian he is committed to live a Christian life.
To you young people out there, Paul said to a young preacher, Timothy, some say that he could have been 18 years old in that culture at that day and time. He could have been 25 or 30 and still have been looked upon as a young person. Well whatever, he was considered a young person. Remember what Paul said to Timothy in 1 Timothy 4 and verse 12? “Let no one look down upon your youth or despise you,” which means don’t let anyone have the opportunity to despise you, “but be an example to the believers in word, in conversation, purity, love…” many things he mentioned there pointing out to this young preacher as well as he would point out to Christians everywhere the importance of being a proper example to other people.
Remember when Paul said in 1 Corinthians chapter 14 verse 1, “Be ye followers of me even as I also am of Christ Jesus.” So from the very beginning Paul encouraged Christians throughout Asia Minor where he established one congregation after another in those idolaters’ cities and people were raised up through the blood of Christ to live new lives among that idolatrous and sinful and immoral society and the societies throughout those cities. He encouraged them to live a proper example before other people. That again is what Paul is speaking of as we go back to Titus 2:11 where he said that “being one who follows Christ it is necessary for us because Jesus teaches us that we need to deny ungodliness and worldly lust and live righteously, soberly, and godly in this present world.
When you become a Christian, you just cannot separate the fact that you are of Christ. You are of His body, and when people look at you they’re supposed to see Jesus being reenacted in your life.
Let’s look at what is said in Romans 6:12-13. “We were the slaves of sin but we have become the slaves of righteousness. We gave ourselves to sin and being a sinner (in a sinful condition) but now we have put off all of those things. We’ve put off the old man and now we have become servants or slaves of righteousness.” That’s what we’re supposed to be doing in this life. You know we are a people who make a difference in this world.
When you go throughout our community you see so many things that are efforts by people who believe in Christ who are trying to do good for others who do not have what they need in this life. People are always opening up their hearts and opening up their pocketbooks so that they might help in so many ways. We at the churches of Christ are known to be those who help and assist those in the community who strive to do our best to help those who are not of the household of faith because we know that people are suffering. Was not Jesus the same way when He fed the 5,000? When He fed the 4,000? When He healed the blind man? When He made those who could not speak to speak? And when He performed all of those wonderful miracles during His day and time? He was wanting to have and did have compassion on those who had needs. That’s the life that we’re supposed to live. Do you remember when Jesus assembled all the nations of the earth before Him? This is in Matthew 25. Actually He was telling a story that would relate to how we, when we become Christians, are supposed to do His work. He said, “And as the nations of the earth were gathered before Him, He would separate the sheep from the goats. Some would go to the left hand and some would go to the right hand.” Now what determined whether or not if those people were righteous before God? It was in the way they were living the life that Christ would want them to live for some saw people hungry and did not give them something to eat. Some who claimed to be of Him saw people thirsty and did not give them anything to drink. Some, because of Christ, and their lack of commitment to Him, saw people were in need, those widows and orphans and others and some who were in prison, saw them in need and failed to care for their needs. These were people who were not doing what Christ desired of them to do. They were not proper examples in the community. Do you know what Jesus said to those people who failed to do those things, who failed to live up to the commitment that they had made to Him? He said this, “Take this unprofitable servant and cast him into outer darkness where there is weeping and gnashing of teeth.” (Inaudible) But for those who did those things, He gave them an entrance into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Yes, we as Christians live a life that God lived. That’s a life of agape love, which means I think of others. I want to help others. I want to serve others. I want to take care of their needs. That is the motivation behind us as Christians, and when we make that commitment to Christ, that’s indeed what He expects of us.
Remember in John 13 right before Jesus was going to be led away for his crucifixion? He was in the upper room and He took a towel and He put it around His waist and actually He performed a service for His disciples, and that service was to wash their feet. Remember Peter rejected that? He said, “No Lord, you’re not going to wash mine.” Jesus said, “If I don’t I will have nothing to do with not only my feet but my hands and my head also.” The lesson He was teaching these disciples was this. “As I have served you, you should serve others.” Now He committed a great commission to these men to “go into all the world to preach the gospel to every creature.” He committed a life that would go to the point of even dying for the cause of Christ doing the work of Christ so much that they would be willing to die for the cause of Christ, but those things that they did must be there for people to see their commitment to Christ and for Christ to see the disciple’s commitment to Him.
So what can we say? We can say only what the scripture says. It is important and not just important but necessary for you, if you claim to be a Christian, to do the works that Christ has sent you to do. Six hundred times, over six hundred times in the New Testament the word “work” is mentioned. Yes, we must exemplify Christ in our lives. It is what we as Christians have been created for, to live for others, to live for God first, to live for others, and to do what we can to live for Christ.
My friend, will you consider these things this morning as you seek also to do the Will of Christ? And when you’re ready to make that commitment to Christ we pray that you will make it by belief, repentance, confession and baptism and be added to the kingdom of God and do those wonderful and mighty works for Him. This is our prayer for you this morning and this is our prayer for us that we might learn to live the Christian life as we are children of God.
(SONG # 3 - “I Know Whom I Have Believed!”)
As always it was great to have you join us this morning. I hope our time together has been uplifting and profitable to all. We invite you back every Sunday morning at 7:30, as we commit ourselves to this worship to God!
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May we all strive to understand the clear connection between being a Christian and living like one! Will you show your God and the World that you are truly of your Creator?