Summary: Our text describes a better way to live, and move, and have our being. Eph. 5:15-17 directs specifically how saints are to behave in the 21st century.
CONFRONTING THE DEMANDS OF THE 21ST CENTURY
Text: Ephesians 5:15-17, "See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,
Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.
Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is."
Introduction: January 1, 2000 probably brought, to some, a degree of hope and encouragement that, somehow, This world might get better and brighter-- not worse. But now, thirteen and one half years into the new millennium, the days are no less evil than the past (blinding flash of the obvious).
(anecdote) A certain man's countenance appeared sad and forlorn. A neighbor noticed and said to him,
"Cheer up! Things could get worse." Later the sad man was heard to say, "I cheered up and sure
enough--things got worse."
Our text describes a better way to live, and move, and have our being. Eph. 5:15-17 directs specifically how saints are to behave in the 21st century.
This is the year 2013. We see trouble, confusion, hatred, abuses at every level of society and government.
Numbers 32:14, "And, behold, ye are risen up in your fathers' stead, an increase of sinful men, to augment yet the fierce anger of the LORD toward Israel."
The Topical Reference Bible says that 1452 B. C. is when this verse was written.
Let us do a little math: 1452 B. C. to the year 1 A. D. is 1,451 years. A. D. 1 until 2013 is 2,012 years. 1451 plus 2012 equals 3463 years.
Three and one half millenniums ago the great trouble was on the societies of the earth. It is the same today, if not worse. So what is the answer for today? The answer is in the One Who is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Heb. 13:8).
Theme: Christ is the answer for this era of time. He is also the answer for every era of time.
I. Some Societal Demands With Which We Are Confronted
A. Fear, Worry, Hurt, and Rejection
B. Emptiness, Hatred, Prejudice
C. Bound to Bad Habits and Addictions
D. Sickness, Rebellion, Stubborness
E. Humanistic Self-Sufficient Attitudes
II. For Dealing With Fear Christ Offers Peace
A. John 14:27, "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth,
give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
B. The word troubled in the above verse means
1. to stir
2. to agitate
3. to make angry
4. to stir up water till muddy-clouded (Strong's G5015)
C. Fear hath torment (1 John 4:18). One "expert" stated that now people are so anxious and fearful
that it requires two psychiatists to help one man across a street in New York City.
D. The world offers a temporary peace that is fraught with troubling questions.
1. Will that large asteroid miss the Earth?
2. Will the doctor's good prognosis last?
3. Will there be a peace treaty?
4. Will that peace treaty bring lasting harmony?
5. Will the politicians keep their promises?
E. Christ gives peace that passes all understanding (Philippians 4:7).
1. "Our peace comes to us as a gift from God."__David Guzik
2. "Through the finished work of Jesus Christ one can have peace with God."__David Guzik
III. For Dealing With Worry Christ Offers Confidence And Assurance.
A. John 14:1, "let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me."
B. In Jesus Christ we live, and move, and have our being (Acts 17:28).
C. Satan loves
1. worry warts
2. those with little or no confidence
3. those who are uncertain and unsure
D. Lives committed to Christ invites His uplift because He is the
IV. For Hurt and Rejection He Offers Forgiveness and Affirmation.
A. We must depart for all sin.
B. Jesus identifies with our times of suffering and rejection.
C. Christ in one's life affirms and strengthens that life.
D. Accepted in the Beloved (Eph. 1:6)
1. sons not servants
2. God has ordained that the believer lives within God's boundary.
a) separated unto God
b) live within the evirons of His holiness
c) sealed unto the day of redemption (Eph. 4:30)
d) objects of His affirmation (Heb. 2:16-18; 4:15)
V. For Emptiness, He Offers Meaning In Life.
A. John 10:10b, "...I am come that they might have life, and that they might have [it] more abundantly."
1. to preserve life
2. to impart LIFE, and communicate it in rich and unfailing exuberance__JFB
B. John 14:27, "Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you.
Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid."