Summary: In our Spiritual life, it is so critical to walk carefully.
1. How many times have you driven NORTH or SOUTH on I-25 and found some interesting driving habits?
a. Cell phone in one hand, coffee in the other… steering?
b. One gal was reading the Denver Post, completely open.
c. Honking caught my attention as one man who was shaving was honking at a gal who was putting on her eyeliner.
2. All of these drivers have one thing in common:
a. THEY ARE NOT BEING CAREFUL.
b. OK, this isn’t just a THEY thing is it?? It’s a WE thing too.
c. YES… I’m guilty. I have been known to talk on a cell phone and drink coffee at the same time I’m driving a stick shift!
3. But friends… being CARELESS can be no laughing matter.
a. Just ask Dawn Richardson from Arlington Virginia.
b. In February of 2002, she had just broken up with her boyfriend and was hurt and upset that he left her.
c. She was driving her Ford Explorer at about 70MPH down the highway yelling on her cell phone at this creep.
d. After a few close calls, she finally lost control of her vehicle and caused a serious fatal collision ending her own life.
NOTE: You would think after close call after close call, we would get the picture, and understand the situation!
· But that’s the danger in carelessness, we don’t pay attention until something terrible happens and we’re forced to!
· Usually it takes a serious incident, a horrible mistake, or an incredible tragedy to open our eyes and grab our full attention!
4. So many have been lost through SPIRITUAL CARELESSNESS.
a. It breaks my heart to think of JUST the people I know.
b. A careless mouth… careless thought-life…
c. Carelessness toward the Word, Prayer, Fellowship leads to
d. Broken homes, weak churches, & spiritual destruction!
SO this morning, the Holy Spirit has a Word for you/us… a warning, an encouragement… He wants us to BE SPIRITUALLY CAREFUL!
· Be careful “who you IMITATE”, Be careful with whom you ASSOCIATE, and be careful what you INTAKE.
I. (5.1-6) WHO YOU IMITATE – Walk in Love
1. (1-2) Be imitators of God – Walk in Love
a. The word imitate, literally means to mimic or copy.
b. If you’re going to imitate anybody, mimic & copy Jesus!
NOW: This is a natural thing. It’s not like being a parrot and trying simply to copy superficially what God does…
· NO, as His daughter & His Son… His character flows thru you.
· It’s amazing to me how much your kids are like you… & not me.
YET at the same time our imitation is birthed out of a decision.
· A conscious decision to follow the example of Jesus Christ.
c. That word walk again… Let your whole life be one of love…
d. It first starts with LOVE toward God…
e. Then it follows with LOVE toward our fellow man.
APP: Jesus provides us with the demonstration of that love…
· He gave Himself for us. He sacrificed on our behalf.
· Let’s turn to Hebrews 12:1-3
· The Joy of seeing you and me saved… of seeing our changed lives share His great love… Oh, He willingly sacrificed!
· Now turn to 1 Corinthians 13:4 – Here it is worked out…
2. (3-6) Avoid sin.
a. BUT… fornication, all uncleanness or covetousness.
b. They don’t belong in the Christian’s life or in His church.
c. None of these are in dispute really… BUT
d. (4) He goes on to mention foolish talking & course jesting.
· Foolish Talking… It isn’t edifying… idle words, dirty jokes.
· Coarse Jesting… They aren’t to even be joked about.
· No fornicator (pornographer), no unclean person…
· No covetous man, no idolater will inherit God’s kingdom.
· Paul says these are not ‘FITTING’ for saints, very UNLOVELY.
· They just don’t fit, they’re out of place in the church.
· They are not actions of love or sacrifice.
NOTE: A person practicing these things knows that they are not living for the Kingdom of God. These aren’t heavenly qualities.
· So if we’re delighted in sexual sin, enjoying the dirty jokes, caught up in coveting our neighbor’s wife/husband…
· Then there is no heavenly inheritance, no spiritual expectation.
· I KNOW These are POWERFUL WORDS that relate directly to salvation. I choose to let them speak for themselves.
e. (6) He ends this section with a warning to not be deceived.
NOTE: The real deception here is that we think we will honor and glorify Jesus Christ without being loving and helpful to others.
· The church of Jesus Christ, Calvary Chapel Aurora, is called to love people, to walk in his love, in His example!
John 15.12-13 "This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 "Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.