Summary: Pentecost 10 (C) - Believers will continue to live in Christ as they recognize / enjoy God’s blessings and relish / appreciate Christ’s victories.
“CONTINUE TO LIVE IN CHRIST” (Outline)
August 9, 2009 --
PENTECOST 10 --
INTRO: In the Lord Jesus Christ believers have everything that they need. Believers are also given more than one can even ask or imagine. Without Christ people have nothing. Today’s word of God points out how vital it is to maintain an active relationship with the Lord. "I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing"(JOHN 15:4). Our theme today is:
“CONTINUE TO LIVE IN CHRIST”.
I. Enjoy (recognize) the blessings of Christ.
II. Relish (appreciate) the victories of Christ.
I. ENJOY (RECOGNIZE) THE BLESSINGS OF CHRIST
A. God, through the apostle Paul, reminds these believers of their faith which enjoys God’s blessings.
1. Verse 6. The gift of the Holy Spirit is faith. The believers were to continue in that faith.
2. Verse 7. Like a growing plant the Christian faith is rooted in Christ, the water of life.
3. Believers are also built up in Christ, living stones forming the spiritual temple of God.
B. Verse 8. Paul warns against the false teachers challenging God’s free grace in his gospel.
1. Judaizers (“traditionalists”) wanted to use the law as the way to salvation, not the gospel.
2. This mixing of law and gospel undermines the effectiveness of God’s teachings.
a. Law is associated with sin (3 letters each). b. Gospel is associated with Savior (6 letters).
C. Verse 9. Jesus, the Christ, was not only true man but also true God. God lived among man in the flesh.
1. Paul makes this fact known for those who were caught up in the worship of angels.
2. Verse 10. The fullness of God found in Christ is another blessing given to believers.
D. The teachings of men and the philosophies of this world still stand opposed to the grace of God. Whenever man injects his thoughts or reasoning into the word of God he muddies the simple saving truth God intends for all mankind. Man’s traditions and philosophies cannot take away the power of God’s holy word. This is the greatest blessing the Lord God Almighty provides for us – his word. "But blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream" (JEREMIAH 17:7, 8a). Believers are the green trees firmly rooted in the water of life. We are the beacons of blessings for those wandering in our drought-stricken land of wickedness, sin, and rebellion. Like a well-watered plant our souls are nourished with God’s water of life.
E. Like living stones we are also built up into the holy Christian church. This is another one of God’s blessing that we enjoy. Man’s traditions and philosophies will come, and go, and fail. The word of the Lord does not fail. God’s word will stand forever as our firm foundation. "Nevertheless, God’s solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: ‘The Lord knows those who are his,’ and, ‘Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness’" (2 TIMOTHY 2:19). Our solid foundation is that the Lord God Almighty knows each of us by name. We are being built into God’s spiritual temple. We continue to live in Christ as we confess the Lord’s name and turn away from wickedness.
F. We have learned that Christ lives in us (last week, Colossians 1:21-28). This is a divine mystery and it is also our glorious hope. We are reminded of the importance of Christ living in us. We are given con-fidence and boldness with Christ alive in us. With Christ alive in us we are excited and moved to continue to live in Christ. Time and time and time again the promises of man come crashing down in utter failure. Our God is not a man that he should lie. God promises and fulfills every promise he makes. "Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers" (PSALM 1:1). In faith we trust in the Lord, not man. God’s great blessing to enjoy.
“CONTINUE TO LIVE CHRIST”. We live in Christ as and when we enjoy and recognize his blessings.
II. RELISH (APPRECIATE) THE VICTORIES OF CHRIST
A. In verses 9, 10 God lived in Christ. The authority of Christ over every enemy is meant for believers.
1. Verse 11. Paul challenges the Judaizers. Circumcision was an outward covenant with God.
2. Faith is inward matter of the heart. It is worked not by men’s hand but by the grace of God.