Summary: God wants to use you to make those around you aware of His offer of friendship.


II COR. 5:16-20 AUGUST 17, 2003 Chester’s First Baptist Church

Mike Fogerson, Speaker


[23] And the scripture was fulfilled that says, "Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness," and he was called God’s friend. -Jms. 2:23

B This morning we will hearing "How To Be God’s Good Friend."

a God wanted to use his friends at the Corinthian church to restore the world’s relationship to himself. (ETS)

b God wants to use you to make those around you aware of his offer of friendship.

2CO 5:16 So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. [17] Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! [18] All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: [19] that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation. [20] We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God.

C I hope you will invite at least four people to our first revival service. (Objective)

a Who will be God’s good friend? (Probing Question)

b Let’s look at two things that happen to those who become God’s good friend.

Pray & Preach

I The first thing that happens to those who become God’s good friend is. . . THEY ARE CHANGED. (vv:16-17)

A Paul saw two key changes that took place when someone became a believer.

a v:16 First Change. . .NEW ATTITUDE.

Seeing people in a different light (former was superficial, now spiritual)

Jesus (They had seen him as a homeless man from Nazareth, NOW they see him as the Messiah from Heaven.) Superficial vs. Spiritual

*By the way...If you don’t ever see Jesus for who he really is, you will NEVER be saved!

Not so much a new behavior as it was a new attitude.

b v:17 Second Change. . .NEW CREATION

Old life is gone, new life had bloomed.

Old is gone (gk. "parelthen") Passed out of existence. Dinosaur!

New has come (gk. "gegonen") Come to stay!

New What? 1st is a new attitude!!!

B Becoming a believer (God’s friend) is more than saying a prayer. (In fact, you can say a "sinner’s prayer" a million times and if it’s not from your heart, you still lost.)

a New birth is NOT putting your name on a church membership roll, baptism, quarter in the offering the plate.

Deep & radical change of the heart.

Play by different rules, different agenda!

Old is GONE, New has COME (Your name is no longer Deb, Mike, Sue. God calls you "his."

b We must daily examine our heart and see if that change that makes us God’s friends has taken place.

If it hasn’t. . .something is wrong!

If we are still living like hell, talking like hell,. . .guess where we are probably headed?

C Two college boys were home for the summer trying to make a few extra bucks. They were hired to cut firewood for a man. (The boys had never cut firewood so the man showed them how to do it.)

a That afternoon, the man got a phone call from his boss down at the office and said, "The entertainment for tonight’s Customer Appreciation Dinner just cancelled. We’ve got to find somebody. . .quick!"

Just then, the man saw the college boy run across the yard, run halfway up the wall of the garage and do a double flip.

The man told his boss what he had just seen, the boss said, "Go ask him if he’d preform for $100 at the dinner." So he did.

The college boy asked his flying buddy, "Hey Fred, this man wants to know if you’d cut off another toe tonight for $100?"

b So many of us mistakenly believe that we serve and live for Jesus without changing our lives. Some things MUST be "cut off."

*The old is GONE, the NEW has COME! God’s friend are changed!

II The second thing that happens to those who become God’s good friend is. . . THEY ARE CHALLENGED. (vv:18-20)

A Paul made it crystal clear what the holy challenge was to the changed Corinthian.

Two Challenge was in two parts.

1 The Ministry of Reconciliation: (v:18)

[18] All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the Ministry of reconciliation:

Ministry (Diakonia) Service, Labor, Assistance, Helping somebody out!!

Ministry is an action, event, you can "see" it!!

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