Sermons

Summary: The biblical model for churches is homogenous, not homogeneous. This sermon looks at the unity among believers including Jews and Greeks, slave and free and male and female

BREAKING DIVIDING WALLS

May 27, 2007 a.m.

Text: Gal. 2:26-29

Introduction: In recent years there has been a push toward unity and breaking down walls of separation between denominations and people. One of the current choruses being sung these days is:

Break Dividing Walls

(David Ruis)

There is a place of commanded blessing

Where brethren in unity dwell

A place where anointing oil is flowing

And we live as one

You have called us to be a body

You have called us as friends

Joined together in the bond of the Spirit

Unto the end

Father we join with the prayer of Jesus

As you are so let us be one

Joined together in unity and purpose

All for the love of your son

We will break dividing walls

We will break dividing walls

We will break dividing walls in the name of your Son

We will break dividing walls

We will break dividing walls and we will be one

Copyright © 1994 Mercy/Vineyard Publishing. All rights reserved. International copyright secured.

One of the requests of Jesus’ high priestly prayer found in John 17 was for unity among the disciples and their followers.

I. Unity Comes From a Relationship to Christ (vv 26-27)

A. Exp:

1. One of the greatest misunderstandings of the fatherhood of God is that He is the Father of all people.

a) He is the Father of all by creation.

b) He is not the Father of all by redemption

2. We become his children through faith in Christ.

a) All may be His creatures and objects of His mercy even as he cares for the sparrows that do not even fall to the ground apart from His will (Mat. 10:29). Mat. 5:45 “He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.”

b) The only ones who are adopted into his family are those who receive Christ as Lord (John 1:12).

3. In Christ we put on a new way of life as a garment.

a) Symbolized in baptism.

b) We turn from sin to Christ, from death to life

c) We are raised to walk in newness of life (Romans 6:4—“We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life”.)

B. Illus:

Putting on Christ means putting on a new life. Roman young men symbolized moving from Adolescence to maturity by taking of the toga of childhood and putting on the toga of manhood.

C. App:

1. In Christ we begin a new way of life. “The believer has laid aside the dirty garments of sin (Is. 64:6), and by faith, received the robes of righteousness” (Wiersbe 704).

2. We move from the external motivation of the law (rewards and punishments) to the internal motivation of the Spirit.

3. Legalistic religion (Do’s and Don’ts) is a sign of spiritual immaturity.

II. Unity Comes through Faith in Christ (v. 28)

A. Exp:

1. Another common misunderstanding is that the Jews in the OT were saved by keeping the sacrificial law.

a) The law separated men from God. It pointed out how far we are from God’s standard of perfect righteousness.

b) It put a “fence around the tabernacle and a veil between the holy place and the holy of holies” (Wiersbe 704).

2. They thought they were God’s chosen because they had the law so they looked down on the other races.

a) They looked down on the slaves and females.

b) They felt as though their social status gave them some advantage with God.

3. In Christ all are united.

a) Faith removes the sin barrier between men and God.

b) Faith removes the social barriers between men and men.

B. Illus:

Eph 2:14-16—“For he himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, by abolishing in his flesh the law with its commandments and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of the two, thus making peace, and in this one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility.”

C. App:

1. The law was temporary. It was to point to the coming Messiah. In the OT people were saved by faith as we are. Abraham believed God. Hab. 2:4—“The just shall live by his faith.”

2. As a result, we are all one in Christ. There is no spiritual ranking, no superiority of race or language.

3. We should reach all people for Christ—Hispanics, The Udmurts of Russia for example.

III. Unity Comes through the Promise of Christ (v. 29)

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