Summary: The only resolution that can be effective is the one made with God in mind.
December 30, 2012
Text: Romans 8:1-17
Subject: New Years Resolutions
Title: It’s Time for a Change
It’s that time of the year. You know what I’m talking about. It’s the time when we all have to stop and evaluate our lives and try to come to some reasonable decision about what we can change for the next year to make our lives better. I’m talking about New Years resolutions. You know – those things we talk about for months and commit to for days. Have you ever wondered why we do that? Why do we make resolutions and then not keep them? It is possibly because we set goals that are simply out of our reach to obtain or are too difficult for us to accomplish.
So why don’t we change the way we think and make resolutions that we know we can keep?
This year, I resolve to...
- Gain weight. At least 30 pounds.
- Stop exercising. Waste of time.
- Procrastinate more. Starting tomorrow.
- Take a vacation to someplace important: like, to see the largest ball of twine.
- Not jump off a cliff just because everyone else did.
- Not have eight children at once.
- Not eat cloned meat.
- Create loose ends.
- Get further in debt.
- Not believe politicians.
- Not drive a motorized vehicle across thin ice.
- Not swim with piranhas or sharks.
- Wait around for opportunity to find me.
- Focus on the faults of others.
- Mope about my faults.
- Never make New Year's resolutions again.
Seriously, I believe that when we make resolutions that we have every intention of keeping them. I want to share with you today from Romans Chapter 8 to help you see that as a bible believing, tongue talking, Spirit – filled child of the Living God you can make choices in your life that will help you make changes that can be for life.
Read Romans 8:1-17
I believe this is God's Word…
I believe it is for me…
I accept it as mine…
And I appropriate it to my life today…
Change comes through a life in the Spirit.
I. A CHOICE BETWEEN TWO DIMENSIONS… I think that before you even consider a resolution for the New Year you must stop and ask yourself a question, “Why is this something that is important?” There are two sources of the voices you hear speaking to you in your inner man. 1) The voice of self and self is distinguished by two voices – your own voice and the voice of your enemy influencing your natural man. Neither of these voices is under the control of the Spirit. 2) Is the voice of the Holy Spirit? 1Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, 2because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death. In your life you will be led by something. Your choice is this - will you be led by the natural man or by the Spirit? …The law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death… The Law of the Spirit is the activity of the Holy Spirit in believers. He leads you, teaches you, guides you into all truth, He reveals the secret things of God to you. Now, concerning you resolutions – if your resolution is a change in your life that has been prompted by the Holy Spirit you can walk by faith believing that if He has called you to these changes, then He will enable you to do it. On the other hand, if you are being led by the natural man to make changes (the law of sin and death) those changes may be just to please yourself. The only way to know if the changes you are being led to make are from God is to weigh them against the truth of the scriptures. I’m going to spend more time in the word… That’s the Spirit. I’m going to get more involved in ministry… Spirit. I’m going to do whatever it takes to make me happy for a change… flesh! Satan! Especially if the things that you choose to make yourself happy conflict with God's Word. Those things may satisfy for a time, but it is the law of sin and death at work in you. 3For what the law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the sinful nature, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in sinful man, 4in order that the righteous requirements of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the sinful nature but according to the Spirit.