Summary: We were saved - not just for heaven, not just to attend church and not to sit in the pew but to do good works.
God Has Work For You To Do
8For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9Not of works, lest any man should boast. 10For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
There was a minister that was out taking a walk on one of the streets in his neighborhood. As he was walking, he noticed a small boy attempting to ring the doorbell on the porch of a house. The boy was short and the doorbell was higher than usual. The boy could not quite reach it. So the minister stepped up to the porch beside the boy and reached up and aggressively rang the doorbell for the boy. ‘Then the minister said - And now what young man? ‘Now, the boy said, we run like crazy’! UB - Now that you have been saved: what’s next?
Let me begin this message today with some question. As you hear these questions, do not allow your mind to turn and focus on anybody else. I know human nature. I know that when you hear these questions you will immediately think that the Pastor is talking about “them” – the “other folk”. But right now, let your Holy Ghost flashlight shine deep into your own soul and nobody else’. The whole intent here is for us to do some self-soul searching. Now the questions are - Am I doing what God wants me to do in the congregation where He has placed me? If everybody gave what I give – could the church meet the needs of the people as God intends? If everybody in the Church work as I do- could the church function effectively? If we answer those questions truthfully, for most of us, the answers would be no – no – and no! I did say most of us because this branch of Zion is no different than any other. The formula is the same regardless of where you go. 80% of the work is done by 20% of the people. I don’t know first-hand here because I don’t deal with the money but I have heard that the same formula applies to giving. 80% of the income is given by 20% of the people. Now the formula may not be exact but I can say that it is closer to being accurate than the other way around.
Now my intent today is not to beat us up. Satan is doing enough of that and I don’t intend on helping him out one bit. My intent today is to get all of us on the same page with God on how He wants His church to function. I want everybody in this place to realize that you are not a mistake, you are loved and you are here for a purpose. I want the people under the sound of my voice today to truly be blessed and be a blessing. I want all of us to live at the level and purpose that God had planned from the foundation of the world. And UB - I know this first-hand that when we get on the same page with God on any and everything – when we do what we are designed and called to do - we will truly have a blessed life. And let me add this - you will never be all that you could - should - had ought a be until you do what God put you here to do. And as the formula goes – 20% of the folk in here will witness to the truth of that proclamation. Now if you can’t say Amen, go ahead and go hum!
Our text for today is a very familiar piece of Scripture and it is directed to people that’s already saved. And as saved folk we will gladly quote vss. 8-9 but we don’t quote vs. 10 that much. And when we do that, we only get the first part of the thought and miss the rest of what Paul is saying. See - when Paul begins this chapter, he wants us to remember where we were and what condition we were in before Christ. Then when we get to verses 8 & 9 he wants us to understand how we got to be where we are in Christ. Then he continues the thought in verse 10 with what God intends to do through us now that we’re in Christ. We were saved by grace so God can use us for His glory.
What we need to understand today is that salvation is not the end of God’s plans for us, it is just the beginning. Yes He wants all of us to spend eternity with Him in glory. He wants all of us to be saved. But He didn’t save us just for heaven. If that was the case, as soon as we got saved – as soon as we accept Jesus as Lord, we would instantly be caught up to glory. But that is not the case. There is a whole lot of work for God’s people to do on this earth before we get to heaven. Even Jesus said that the harvest is plentiful but the laborers are few. Philippians 2:13 says - For God is working in you, giving you the desire to obey him and the power to do what pleases him. We were not saved just for heaven and we were not saved just to be church goers either.