Sermon shared by Stephen Funderburk
Intro: over the last few years there have been a lot of people claiming to have seen UFOís or to have had encounters with alien beings. Some of these encounters are just a mere sighting, to those who claim they have been taken to other planets and returned back to earth. Most people donít believe in these encounters, while there are some who do. As Christians, we claim to have had an encounter with Jesus Christ, and some very important things must take place for people to believe our encounter was real.
A True Encounter With Jesus Christ
∑ in these verses there is the story of Saulís conversion to Christ. It is the Saul to Paul encounter. One day he is out to destroy Christ, but after this encounter he becomes one of the most powerful witnesses for Christ ever. Here are some keys to a true encounter with Christ.
The first revelation in a true encounter is this: if you arenít serving Jesus Christ, then your life is a life of fighting against Him. v.4
Saul, why are you persecuting me?
1. if you have a true encounter with Christ, the first thing revealed to you is that He that is not with me is against me. I am sure this is a startling revelation for some, that outside of Christ you are His enemy.
2. there is no neutral ground.
3. Your life outside of Christ is an offense to Christ, every day your life you work against the cause of Christ.
The second revelation in a true encounter is this: life is hard fighting against Christ. v. 5 it is hard to kick against the pricks.
a. I believe this is part of any true encounter with Christ, when you come to the conclusion that life is a hard place outside of Christ.
b. The pleasures of sin are only for a season
c. There is no joy outside of Godís will for our lives. No matter how successful, no matter how highly regarded we may be in this world, there is no real joy in life outside of a true encounter with Jesus Christ as Saviour.
III. The third revelation in a true encounter is this: I want to do Godís will, show me what is the way, and I will walk in it. V.6
∑ If you have had a true encounter with Jesus, you want to serve him, you want to give your life to him. What is it you want me to do Jesus is the cry of anyone that has had a true encounter.
∑ Saulís passion for religion was to be replaced with a passion for Christ. If someone has an encounter with Christ, they will have a passion for Christ.
∑ Your service for Christ is based out of a love for Christ. It isnít that you are being made to do anything, it is you canít help but do something for this Christ of a true encounter.
IV. The fourth revelation in a true encounter is this: v.20 you begin to share Christ, you have a desire to see others have the same encounter that you did.
As you read the scriptures, Paul shared his testimony of his experience with Christ, or his conversion moment. He told King Agrippa, I wasnít disobedient the heavenly vision.
He shared how all his formal training was