Sermons

Summary: Our relationship with God begins with forgiveness; but forgiveness is at the heart of relationships with fellow Christians. Forgiveness is not a commodity that we receive. It impacts our life to the degree that we want to share what we've received.

  Study Tools
  Study Tools

WAC2BL: Forgiven & Forgiving

Scripture Text: Colossians 3.12-14

INTRODUCTION

I’ve been thinking-about some of the most-highly-rated television shows over the past 30 years: Star Trek, M*A*S*H*, Cheers, Seinfeld, Lost. Of some-of these-shows, I’ve been an avid-fan ~ and watched most of the episodes. Others, I’ve watched a-few, here-and-there.

But, despite what I think about these shows, there’s little-argument that these are some-of the most popular shows in the past three-decades. I thought about the settings-and-back-drops for each-one: For Star Trek, the setting was space ~ the final-frontier. For M*A*S*H*, it was South Korea during the Korean War. For Cheers, the setting was a bar in Boston. For Seinfeld ~ an apartment in Manhattan. And for Lost ~ an island somewhere in the Pacific Ocean.

Hugely different settings. But they all have something in common. And that-common-element is what draws people to watch these shows. It has nothing-to-do with the setting, …and it has everything-to-do-with the relationships between characters!

Relationships are a significant-part of every person’s life. Boys-and-girls, teen-agers, men-and-women seek-out-relationships. People want folks in their lives who care-about-them; …people that are going to stick-it-out, come-what-may; …companions that are committed to the relationship.

This-desire-for-relationships is a universal-human-desire; …it-is-what-it-is because God designed us to be connected to-each-other ~ …significant, …lasting, …meaningful relationships with people. Incidentally… this is what stands behind the Second Great Commandment: Love your neighbor as yourself. Jesus didn’t give that command as an arbitrary, …random-thing that He pulled-out-of-the-air because He thought it’d be a good-idea. No! He gave us that command because He knew that this-is-what-we’re-created-for! Not-only are we created to enjoy a loving, trusting relationship with God; …but we’re also created to enjoy peaceful, loving relationships with people.

That’s why almost the entirety of the Bible contains stories and laws, commands and descriptions relating-to human-relationships. And it’s-also-why the WAC2BL question is so-important: What’s a Church to Be Like? If it’s about pews-and-steeples, …if it’s about buses or billboard advertisements, …if it’s about productions and programs ~ …we’re missin’ the point! If it’s about professionalism and polished performances, …if it’s about organization and image, …if it’s about entertainment or about busy-ness ~ …we’re missin’ the point!

What’s a Church to Be Like? However we answer that-question, …it’s gotta-be-about relationships ~ …first-of-all, our relationship to God; …and secondly, our relationships to-one-another.

TRANSITION

Last-week, we listened as God spoke to us through Peter’s letter ~ …reminding us that we are God’s redeemed-children, …and as-such, we’re to live-out-our-redemption by loving-one-another sincerely, deeply.

This week, we turn our attention to what God would-say-to-us through the letter to the Colossian-Church. And-just-like last-week, …we find a great-spiritual-truth standing-at-the-heart of a pastoral-command-of-God. The great-theological-truth, at the heart-of-this-passage is this: You are chosen by God! Chosen. Picked. Selected.

Do you remember standing on the playground while your classmates chose-up-sides? ~ Nobody wants-to-be the last-one-picked! If you’re the last-one, you feel-as-though you weren’t-really-chosen, at-all. We don’t want to be an after-thought. We don’t wanna be left-out, …left-overs, …left-behind We don’t want to be on the outside lookin’ in.

But, Scripture tells-us-that, the deep-longing to be included, …to be chosen, …to be wanted ~ …Scripture tells us that the One - who matters-most - has chosen you-and-me! Who-cares whether the “in-crowd” at-school thinks you’re cool!?! Who-cares whether the folks-at-the-office include you in their little-chat-sessions!?! Who-cares whether your neighbors think you’re the odd-ball on the block!?!

Now, I know that we really-do-care… You care when you’re not included, …you care when others treat you disrespectfully, …I care when I’m ignored, …overlooked, …put-down; But, I hope you see that deep-desire, …that impulse to-want to-be-wanted, …that gut-wrenching-fear of being-left-out ~ …all-of-it is a sign that God created us to be in relationship with-Him, and with-one-another! And-because-He-created-us that-way, …we should look to meet that-need in ways that He says are right-and-good! What’s a Church to Be Like ~ This is an attempt to explain how God wants us to build and guide our relationships with one-another so-that our desires-for-fellowship are met in God-honoring-ways!

BODY

Let’s get back to what God is saying to us through the third-chapter of Colossians.

This paragraph begins with : “[A]s God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved…”

There’s a great-theological-truth here: We are chosen by God! We are loved by Him and He has selected us, …set us apart, …called us out of the empty-way-of-life: Together we are His people! But, what are we to do with this awesome-reality? ~

We’re told specific virtues that we are to ‘clothe’ ourselves with ~ …and these are all intensely-relational-virtues. In-other-words, …these all have-to-do-with how-we-relate to one-another… …how we treat one-another, …what kinds of attitudes we have, …how we respond to situations, circumstances, and-the-people that God puts in-our-lives, …these-virtues tell-a-story about what’s-in-our-hearts for-one-another!

But we’re given a list of five virtues to govern our connections with each-other: “Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.”

Download Sermon With PRO View On One Page With PRO
Browse All Media

Related Media


Cast Stones
SermonCentral
PowerPoint Template
Cleanse Me
SermonCentral
PowerPoint Template
Cleanse Me 2
SermonCentral
PowerPoint Template
Talk about it...

Nobody has commented yet. Be the first!

Join the discussion