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Summary: This sermon looks at the three stages we must go through to be overcomers.

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(1)INTRODUCTION:

This verse shows the three stages a mature Christian, who will appear in the end-times with the Lamb (Jesus), has to go through.

In King David we see these three stages. He was CALLED at the age of 17 to be King of all Israel when he was anointed by Samuel in Bethlehem. He was CHOSEN (appointed as King over Judah)when he was anointed at Hebron and he was proven faithful to be anointed as King over all Israel in Jerusalem.

(2) The Three Stages of Our Christian Walk:

(a) CALLED: 2 Tim 1:9 - Called before our birth. God has specific destiny for us.

1 Cor 7:20 - Must know what is our calling and stay there.

(Illustration: Swiss girl wanted to be a preacher, waited on God and was given Heb 5:4 - God was actually calling her to be a doctor).

Are all of us called ? How can we determine what we are called to do ? What must happen before we are chosen (appointed) ?

(b) CHOSEN: Chosen only after much testing/prep. (Isa 48:10) - No short cuts.

(Illustration: Taking a butterfly too early out of it’s cocoon will cause it to drop to the ground, unable to fly).

How did Moses try to take the short cut to his calling ? What was the result ? Look at Exodus 2:5. Was Moses doing what was right ?

Look at Heb 11:27 to find the answer!

Many are called but few are chosen - Matt 20:16 -What does this mean?

(c) FAITHFUL: See Heb 3:5 - how was Moses ’found faithful’. What can we learn from this ?

(Illustration: Clarence Jordan - two PhD’s but God called him to work with poor white and black people in 1940’s America. Faced hatred from particularly church people for looking after blacks.

In 1954 Klu Klux Klan burnt his farm down and chased away all but one black family - Clarence recognised voices of hooded men - some from church and one of then a News Paper reporter.

The next day the reporter came to repot on the ’Closing down of the farm’. Clarence just continued to work and build up the farm. Newspaper man asked,’After 14 years of hard work, you having 2 PhD’s, all is now gone. Tell me, how successful have you been ?

Clarence replied ’I think you misunderstand us sir. We are not about sucess but about FAITHFULNESS!`)

God will say "Well done good and faithful servant" Matt 25:23 - not ’good and successfull servant’ - what is the difference ?

(3) CONCLUSION: What are the three stages ? Where are you personally in these three stages ? What’s a practical step you can take to progress towards your next stage ?


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