Summary: Three simple steps to win the lost to Christ and create revival in the church. The Apostle Paul’s determination to bring enthusiasm to the people of Corinth. A call to return to the things that first made us the people of God.
"How to Make Enthusiastic Servants"
So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and steady, always enthusiastic about the Lord’s work, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless. (1 Corinthians 15:58 NLT)
Intro: It feels great to be enthusiastic. The one thing that makes feeling enthusiastic better…, is to be in a group or crowd of people who are enthusiastic.
The source of the word enthusiasm has its origin in the Greek “en theos” meaning God within us!
Here in our text the Apostle Paul was finishing a sermon to some of the Corinthians who had rejected the idea that Christians would be resurrected after death.
And so there was this apathy…, this indifference…, this boredom and laziness that was growing in the church, because if there is no resurrection after death…, then what is the use? What hope do we have to look forward to?
Today we are going to talk about “How to Make Enthusiastic Servants.”
I am convinced that following these three steps will work to invite the unchurched and win the lost to Christ, and also they will work to motivate and excite the weary believer.
So let’s look at the first point.
I. Re-Sing the Hymns
How shall we sing the Lord’s song in a strange land? (Psalms 137:4 KJV)
This tells us a story about a bitter and sad time in the life of the children of Israel.
It was a period known as the “Great Exile.”
The children of Israel had been invaded by the Babylonians.
Their homes destroyed, not one brick standing on top of another.
Their temple in Jerusalem had been destroyed.
Their cities had been leveled to the ground.
The people who were once blessed and wealthy had lost everything.
Their livestock..., their possessions…, their homes…, their families…,
They were driven from their homeland and made slaves.
The people of Israel would remain scattered for generations with no sign of deliverance in their future.
After years of captivity…, After many miles of journey…from their native country…away from all that was familiar to them…, Their captors demanded from them a song…, But not just any song…,
Their tormentors requested that they sing a joyful song.
Sing for us one of those songs of Jerusalem. Sing us a song of the Lord. Sing with some enthusiasm!
But the bible says that they could not sing…, they would not sing…
They sat down and wept and hung their harps in the weeping willow trees…
Because they could not sing the songs of the Lord in such an unfamiliar and strange land.
Image if you were so sad that you could not sing.
Look around you today…there are so many people in the world who are broken…
People who are hurt. People who are held captive to addictions. People who are bound by job loss and poverty. People who are angry because of divorce and embittered by families fighting.
Church is a place to inspire, to make the wounded feel whole again. Worship warms the heart and sets the soul and spirit on fire again.
If you want to get a group of people excited and enthusiastic you sing.
Songs and music are safe and comfortable to the unchurched and believer alike.
You don’t have to be a Christian…, you don’t even have to know the words to a song…
But when you get in a crowd of people who are singing…, before you know it…
You are tapping your feet…, You are humming the tune…, You are part of the crowd…, You are fitting in.
When you are tired…, depressed…, beaten down…, discouraged…, sing a hymn and your hope will begin to return.
We need to Re-Sing the Hymns…
Just As I Am Without One Plea (written in 1835 by Charlotte Elliott).
"I Can Only Imagine" (recorded by Mercy Me and written by Bart Millard).
We can learn a lot about ourselves when we look at what we sing about.
Sing a praise song and then end it with “Amazing Grace.” (John Newton 1778).
When you want to make a group of people enthusiastic then Re-Sing the hymns.
When you want to make a group of people enthusiastic…
II. Re-Preach the Gospel
For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.
(1 Corinthians 2:2 KJV)
When the Apostle Paul first visited Corinth…, (when he founded the church of Corinth in Acts 18:1) Paul started out preaching the basics…, the fundamental precepts…, the simple message of the Gospel. He was determined to preach nothing but the story…, of Christ crucified, Christ dead and buried, Christ risen from the dead, Christ will come again.
He returned, preaching that same message of truth near the end of 1 Corinthians 15:45.
It is a sermon that says, Satan seemed to be victorious in the Garden of Eden.