6-Week Series: Against All Odds

Sermons

Summary: Memorial Day Weekend officially begins the summer season. That means that people will be heading to the beaches and for those fortunate enough to have pools in their yards, it means a lot more time outside by the pool.

BACKGROUND INFORMATION:

Memorial Day Weekend officially begins the summer season. That means that people will be heading to the beaches and for those fortunate enough to have pools in their yards, it means a lot more time outside by the pool.

Have you ever noticed whether it is at the beach or at the home-side pool, there is one of two ways that people get in the water? Some people start by just putting their feet in and slowly they might let other parts of their body get wet but maybe they don’t want their hair or their face to get wet; and then there are those that are “all in”; right from the start everything gets wet. They held nothing back. Not a part of them is left dry. They are “all in”.

Memorial Day Weekend is about the men and women who were “all in”; they gave their life for this great country we call America. They held nothing back; they went “all in”. They gave their life for the freedoms that we enjoy. And I think it is appropriate we salute them with a round of applause.

And today, as we continue our sermon series on the final words from the Cross Jesus declares from that very cross He is hanging on that He is “all in.” So, I must ask you this question, are you “all in” when it comes to your relationship with Jesus Christ or have you been holding something back? Let’s look at the Scripture, and I will make some observations for us to consider. Turn in your Bible to Luke 23:44-46.

SCRIPTURE READING:

Luke 23:44-46 (NIV)

44 It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour,

45 for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two.

46 Jesus called out with a loud voice, "Father, into your hands I commit my spirit." When he had said this, he breathed his last.

POINT #1

JESUS SET THE STANDARD AS TO HOW MUCH OF OUR LIFE WE SHOULD GIVE TO GOD. ALL OF IT.

Jesus said: "Father, into your hands I commit my spirit." Notice Jesus did not say “into your hands, I commit most of my spirit.” And notice Jesus did not say “into your hands, I commit some of my spirit.” And notice Jesus did not say “into your hands I commit the parts that I want to give you.” He gave it all.

I apologize for this analogy even before I give it to you. But every now and then, I will take the remote control and begin flipping the channels on a Sunday afternoon. And I believe it is on one of the ESPN channels that they have this thing called the “World Poker Tour” and they will show you a bunch of men and women sitting at a poker table with a whole bunch of chips next to them playing cards. And every now and then someone will place a bet by pushing all his or her chips to the middle of the table and say “I am all in.” Now think for a second, if our life was represented by those chips, could you visualize moving all your chips to the middle of the table and giving them freely to God and say, “I am all in, God.” Or do you feel uncomfortable with that and you keep some of those chips by your side or would you have second thoughts and pull back some from the center of the table?

Which tells me this, there are two ways not to be “all in”. Not to give your all. The first way is to hold some chips back. There are some things in my life I don’t want to give God control over because I think I can do a better job taking care of those things than God can. So as a result, I never move those chips to the center of the table. Some examples might be my children, my finances and my spouse but I could have named many, many more.

And the second way that I am less than “all in” is that I move all my chips to the center of the table but then I decide to take some back. Have you ever come up to the altar and left something with God but before you got back to your pew, you took it back? And if not by the time you got back to the pew then certainly before you left the church house, you had it back. And the Bible has examples of both ways of failing to meet the standard that Jesus set of being “all in”. And so. we want to look at them and make some comments.

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