Summary: Two important ingredients in the life of the Christian are godliness and contentment. This sermon will challenge us to take on both in our lives.
Two ingredients of a Healthy Christian
I can remember one day while my wife was at work I decided to make brownies for my two boys who were 5 and 2 years old. I tried to get all the right ingredients ready and discovered I had no cooking oil for the pan. I searched through the cupboard and found a bottle of Karo Syrup. It looked similar to cooking oil so I used it. What a disaster. The brownies were as hard as a rock because I had used the wrong ingredients.
As we live our lives as Christians, the wrong ingredients in our lives will make them a total disaster. Two very important ingredients are godliness and contentment. Lets take a look at them.
But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that. People who want to get rich fall into temptation and a trap and into many foolish and harmful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some people, eager for money, have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.
Godliness- a lifestyle that seeks to reflect the Characteristics of God.
Fruit of the Spirit-Love, Joy, Peace,
Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Gentleness,
Other characteristics- Merciful, Honest,
Humble, Meek, Compassionate.
Contentment- a sense of peace based on a relationship with God and not on life circumstances.
These two ingredients together make for a strong Christian.
Some people are godly but not content.
They are saved but not satisfied.
Crisis Christians (always in some crisis)
They seem to have no real joy or peace in life. Why?
1. They don’t feel assured in their salvation
2. They have a carnal lifestyle
3. They have not been taught to be content
4. They aren’t experiencing victory in Jesus
5. They are too apathetic to try to grow
Some Christians are content but not godly.
How can Christians be content but not godly?
Remember Jesus’ parable of the rich fool?
Someone in the crowd said to him, "Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me."
Jesus replied, "Man, who appointed me a judge or an arbiter between you?" Then he said to them, "Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions."
And he told them this parable: "The ground of a certain rich man produced a good crop. He thought to himself, ’What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’
"Then he said, ’This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. And I’ll say to myself, "You have plenty of good things laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry." ’
"But God said to him, ’You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’
"This is how it will be with anyone who stores up things for himself but is not rich toward God."
Some Christians are content because of the material fullness and security.
This is where the church comes in. To show the true essence of godliness and contentment. Sometimes it means creating a sense of Discontent. Creating a desire for godliness.
Psalm 73:3-17 The writer cries out to God how he sees the wicked propser. They are happy and content. He follows God and yet suffers all day long. The writer of this Psalm says he never understood this until he entered the sanctuary of the Lord, then he understood their final destiny.
The Christian should strive to be content and godly.
May people are neither content or godly.
They are without Christ and search the world over for fulfillment and happiness. They look to different areas:
Career-submerging themselves in their work.
Money-a hunger for more and more dollars.
Fame-Wanting to be known and loved, looked up to.
Drugs-thinking a "high" will make the problems go away.
Relationships- unrealistic expectations on others.
Sex-thinking physical pleasures meet spiritual needs.
There are two areas of contentment.
A. Outward life circumstances
B. Inner life, heart.
Solomon thought he had a combination of both.
In the end, he said it was all meaningless. He was still discontent. The truth is that without God true contentment is just a dream. It cannot happen without the grace of Jesus Christ in our lives.
Many people hear the gospel, they know the truth, but they reject it and avoid God altogether because it makes them miserable.