June 14, 2009
Morning Worship

Text: Romans 8:1-17

Subject: Seven Steps to Receiving God’s Promises
Title: Step #1 - Consecrate Yourself

Last week I began the first message in the series Seven Steps to Receiving God’s Promises. All the steps come from the book of Joshua when Israel was preparing to cross the Jordan River and occupy the Promised Land. I want to share with you today the first step in more detail. The very first step in receiving God’s promise is that you must “Consecrate Yourself.” When a person or thing was consecrated in the OT it was set apart for God’s purpose. Priests were consecrated for work in the temple. Vessels were consecrated for use in temple worship.

As they prepared to go into the Promised Land Joshua told the people, “Consecrate yourselves, for tomorrow the LORD will do amazing things among you.” We understand this consecration to be an act that the people would willingly perform in order to be in right standing with God before they crossed the river. Consecration, however, is more than mere adherence to the Law of God. Consecration takes place in the heart and it makes one ready for whatever God wants to do in your life. The Hebrew word means “to make holy” or “to prepare oneself”. The implication is that you make yourself available to what God wants for your life and not what you want. Can you think of any other explanation of why we ended up in Palmyra, MO? It also means a willingness to do what God specifically has for you and you alone.

I heard earlier in the week about a baseball game that went 18 innings I think. The winning team won on a home run off a relief pitcher. Not unusual right? Except in this case the losing manager had used all his pitchers and had to resort to using his shortstop as a relief pitcher. Shortstops are not set apart on a baseball team for pitching. They are for fielding and hitting. Pitchers are for pitching. In the same way God has set each of you apart for a specific purpose.

Now, in the church God has ordained His people to be the recipients of miracles, signs, and wonders – God’s promises. But in order for us to receive the promises we must first begin by consecrating ourselves and according to Romans 8:1-17 that takes place four ways.

1. Consecrated thorough your relationship with Jesus Christ.
2. Consecrated by living in the Spirit.
3. Consecrated by crucifying the flesh.
4. Consecrated by knowing who you are in Christ.

Lord, open my eyes to see and my ears to hear what the Spirit is saying to the church.

I. Consecrated thorough your relationship with Jesus Christ. Paul begins this section of his letter to the church in Rome by saying, 1Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus… I will be using the words “consecrated” and “sanctified” interchangeably as I speak today so keep that in mind. I believe that there are millions of well - intentioned church people who think they are sanctified because of the things they