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Summary: Mercy, God's will, gifts

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A DAY TO SACRIFICE

Romans 12: 1-8 (p789) March 17, 2013

INTRODUCTION:

I have a great fear for Christians who live their lives without much difficulty….And I’m not talking about the difficulties that come as a result of living in a fallen world in a temporary body…(you remember…the one Paul said is subject to death?)

I’m talking about living as a born-again, spirit-filled, and spirit-led follower of Christ…and having difficulty because that life is so opposite to the world it’s lived in.

Here is what I mean…In America…we have young people who accept Christ…sometimes at the age of 10, 11, or 12…..some of them will go to public schools…some not…but they grow up with Christian friends, a quality youth group….even a ministry for them as young adults…living in the world, working in the world is something that is necessary, but most of their friendships and relationships are “In the Church” that’s good and safe for them…but not so good for a world that needs salt and light…

Or, Christians, at least by their acknowledgments who have been in church for a long time…they have created relationships and friendships that are intimate and deep….Maybe they even serve in ministry areas on the weekend….But connecting with the outside world is only done on a short-term mission trip, or in a situation where no one really knows you or will know you afterwards….you witness…but stay at a safe distance, away from difficulty…at least in your “normal” routine day to day…life….

Or how about us minister’s …we’re paid to do ministry…organize church stuff….teach and preach…Monday through Saturday becomes so filled with meetings, preparations, counseling, weddings, funerals…when Sunday rolls around we do what we’ve prepared…but connecting with the lost, outside world…doesn’t happen very much…and the difficulty comes from “church” politics…not outside persecution…living a life inside Christianity…but disconnected with the world…

Here’s what I’ve discovered…unless you are intentional about living as a born again, spirit filled, and led follower of Christ in this world…you won’t have opportunities to fulfill your purpose in life….SATAN will keep you stuck in a “safe” “Comfortable” place…that revolves around you….

I believe this is a great description of the dying church in American (or anywhere)

You see

I GOD DOESN’T CALL THE ARROGANT AND HARDENED BUT A REMANANT CHOSEN BY GRACE

Romans chapters 9, 19 and 11 take the leader through a Jewish History lesson…Moses and Pharaoh, Isaac and Rebecca, Moses and the law, Abraham, Isaiah, Elijah, David and the Patriarchs…

The apostle Paul’s lesson is this in a nutshell…God called the people of Israel…god never rejected His people and He never will…Even when Elijah cried out after His battle on Mt. Carnal with the idol worshipping prophets of Baal…”Lord, Israel….”Lord, Israel has killed your prophets, torn down your altars, I’m the only one left and they’re trying to kill me” (Rom 11:3)


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