Summary: 1 of 5 messages on Colossians. This message is focused on the basics of spiritual life - faith, love, and hope. These are the elements which transform lives if they are focused on Jesus.

Life 101

Carbon, Oxygen, and Hydrogen

Sunday, September 24

The Building Blocks of Physical Life

Carbon, Oxygen, and Hydrogen

The building blocks of our physical bodies and the life that they sustain are three simple elements. Without these three elements there would be no life on earth. We are made from carbon. We breathe oxygen. And we cannot live without water – hydrogen and oxygen – for more than a few hours – a couple of days at the very most.

All animals are made of carbon, breathe oxygen and depend on water just as much as you and I do – yet there is a difference between animal kind and human kind.

Do not write this off as an unimportant consideration. In the last few decades we’ve seen the rise of a whole new way of viewing humanity – which is the lowering of man into the category of being simply another animal.

It has happened in two ways… first, by giving animals rights and recognizing them as having the same value of humanity. And second, through the degradation of man into just another piece of flesh on the hoof. We live, we procreate, we die and the cycle continues.

Both of these doctrines are permeating our world today. Your children are being taught this in school and your college kids are learning it in the universities.

Organizations like PETA would lift up animals to the same ethical and moral plane as humans while many atheist and agnostic groups would see humanity as no different than animal flesh.

We as people of God see human life differently than other forms of life.

I submit to you today that you and I are different than the animals in this world because of three critical spiritual building blocks. These building blocks are the foundation of our eternal existence. There are as important to us in our ultimate future world as carbon, oxygen and hydrogen are in this present world.

In Colossians 1 we learn what it is that makes the difference between us and the animal world. Let’s begin in the third verse.

The Building Blocks of Spiritual Life

3 In our prayers for you we always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 4 because we have heard about the faith you have in Christ Jesus and the love you have for all of God’s people. 5 You have this faith and love because of your hope, and what you hope for is kept safe for you in heaven.

Colossians 1:3-5


4 “…because we have heard about the faith you have in Christ Jesus…”

Colossians 1:4

Just as carbon is the basic building block of all life on earth so faith is the basic building block of all human spirituality.

Notice that I said “human” spirituality. Do you know of any animals who exhibit faith beyond the attachment of a pet to its master? Do you see any animal who exhibits the ability to believe in what it does not see and cannot touch? I don’t. Animals do not have in them the quality of faith nor do they have the ability to believe in that which then have never experienced.

Yet human kind does. All men live by faith – and it has little to do with believing in God. The presence of faith in us is part of what makes us human and not merely an animal. In fact, every person has faith. It’s hardwired into their mind and soul.

Faith is a commodity that is evidenced in every person who has ever lived, who is alive today, and will be in every person yet to live.

Now, some have faith in God others have faith in themselves or another. Some put their faith in a philosophy or a system of thinking.

The evolutionist puts his faith in a system of thinking that claims to be purely rational but is constructed from many different beliefs. The belief in the idea of natural selection is just one such tenet of faith. In the gospel of Darwin there are many doctrines leading from a simple ameba in a primordial soup to the complex world we live in. In this system of thinking there are huge gaps and tremendous leaps of logic – all guided by faith.

The Marxist puts his faith in social evolution built around the idea of thesis, antithesis and synthesis, other wise known as dialectical materialism. According to Karl Marx capitalism was the thesis, the antithesis was revolution of the trampled workers and the synthesis was a new state called communism. It was built on faith.

The fascist puts his faith in the idea that there is an elite group that is better, stronger, mightier, and righter than all others who have no right to even exist. They live by faith in their own supremacy.

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Michael Stover

commented on Nov 8, 2006

good sermon and series.

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