Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: Life is Short. God’s original plan for us was life not death. But when Adam sinned, it changed everything forever. Yet God does not want a short life for us. God wants many of His people living long lives- and this is a one of His blessings He grants to u

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Exodus 20:12, Lev. 19:12

Life Is Short. I think the older you get, the more apparent that becomes. When you’re younger, you feel like you’re going to live forever and can’t wait to get older. But when you’re older, you long for the younger years because they’ve just flown by. James 4:14 says: “Life is like a vapor.” Job 7:6: “Life is like a swift messenger.” It disappears quickly. Psalm 139 tells us that our days on this planet are determined by God while we are still in our mother’s womb. Only He knows how long we will live---two weeks, two years, 40 years, 80 years. No matter your time here on earth, life is short, especially when compared to eternity. But they are not written in stone.

God’s original plan for us was life not death. But when Adam sinned, it changed everything forever. Yet God does not want a short life for us. God wants many of His people living long lives- and this is a one of His blessings He grants to us if we live up to certain expectations. Deuteronomy 6:2: “Fear the LORD your God as long as you live by keeping all his decrees and commands that I give you, and so that you may enjoy long life.” Today we’re going to look at the Biblical and spiritual keys to longevity.

First is full surrender. If you want God’s best for your life, then you will have to give Him your best - and your best is a complete and full surrender of your body, your soul, your spirit and your entire life. God wants all 4 of these things fully surrendered to Him so that He can have full and complete control of your life in order to work fully in you. Each person, once they have become saved, has to make continuous decisions with how they will live out the allotted amount of time they still have left down here on this earth. Who will direct and control your life- you or God? Will Jesus now become both Lord and Savior over your life - or just your Savior? In order to get this particular long life blessing bestowed upon you - you have to make Jesus Lord over your life! That means turning the reigns of your life over to Him. Jesus is now the One to lead and direct your life in the direction that He will now want it to go in. If you are willing to make this kind of sacrifice and commitment to God - then you can expect to receive some incredible blessings or lagniappe besides being able to live a long life, including having health, healing, and protection from your enemies and provision. Too many Christians fail to see these blessings because they have never turned the reigns of their lives over to God for Him to fully handle. They are running their own show and calling all of their own shots. As a result, they are missing out on God’s promises.

Second is obey to God’s ways and law.” God says, “And if you will walk in my ways, keeping my statutes and my commandments, as your father David walked, then I will lengthen your days.” 1 Kings 3:14 And in Proverbs 3:3 it says, “My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart, for they will prolong your life many years and bring you prosperity.” Once you enter into this full surrender with the Lord where He is now fully directing your life in the direction that He will want it to go - you will have to seek to obey all of His commandments and to walk in all of His ways. These "ways" and "commandments" of the Lord are all spelled out very clearly in both the Old and New Testaments. If you do, it will not only extend your life but have some significant health benefits. "In 1995 ... a Harvard Medical School conference [was convened] on the subject of faith and health ... One study found that weekly churchgoers in Maryland were 50 percent less likely to die from heart attacks. (S.I. McMillen, M.D., and David Stern, M.D., None of These Diseases, 2000, p. 200). The Scriptures call us to Love the Lord, obey His voice, cling to Him, walk in all of His ways, Keep His commands and not forget His law.

Third is honor your father and mother. The Scriptures tell us, “Honor your father and your mother so that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.” That’s a promise for when you are growing up as a child and teenager but also when you have become an adult. We are always to honor our father and our mother. If we honor our father and mother, we have better relationships with them. If we, as adults, care for the older generations, we find they live longer and lead fuller lives. This was so important to God that it is one of the 10 commandments. Now the first four commandments have to do with God: have no other gods before him, make no graven images of God, don’t take his name in vain and then keep the Sabbath holy unto God. The next six commandments have to do with our relationship to one another, how we live together and treat one another in our family and our society. Included in these commandments forbidding murder, adultery and theft is the commandment to honor your mother and father. That’s how gravely important this is to God.

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