Summary: The keyword for holiness to exist is BOUNDARIES.
TITLE: Journey of Holiness - Don’t Go there!
SERIES: Lessons Learned From God’s people (part 3)
TOPIC: Spiritual Boundaries, sin
OCCASION: Burnside Christian Church, April 26, 2009
PROP.: God’s people have always had boundaries they are expected to live within. Boundaries are needed in order for us to live holy lives!
INTRODUCTION: Good morning! There is no Jr. church today.
We are on a journey towards Holiness. We have been looking at the parallels between the Israelites Journey towards the promised land and our journey towards holiness. Last week, we gave you a key word that you need in order to be holy. That word is: SEPARATION.
I also told you last week, that our journey towards holiness starts with the call to be SEPARATE! Jesus Christ is different than the rest of the world. And we are following Him so we are called to look differently than the rest of the world as well - in the way we live our lives we are called to be separate!
So the Israelites have left Egypt, they’ve crossed the Red Sea, and now three months later, they come to a mountain. We know it as Mt. Sinai. This is where our story picks up.
Exodus 19:12. That’s it. Just one verse today out of Exodus. But I think you’ll see that this one verse is an important lesson to learn in regards to “How to Be Holy”
Put Limits for the people around the mountain and tell them, “Be careful that you do not go up the mountain or touch the foot of it. Whoever touches the mountain shall surely be put to death.”
Today’s keyword is another one you’ll need on your journey towards holiness. Today’s keyword is: BOUNDARIES. And the sermon title is simply: “Don’t Go there!”
Because, you see, in order for you to be holy, you need to have some boundaries! Some convictions. You need to say, I will NOT do that. I will not go there! In fact, the title of this morning’s message is simply: “Don’t Go there!”
ILLUSTRATION: One of the most impressive boundaries ever constructed is the Great Wall! (no, not that one CHINESE RESTAURANT) I’m talking about this one. The one in China!
Listen to these figures concerning the great wall…
The great wall stretches over 4,000 miles!
The thickness of the wall ranges from 15 - 30 feet
The wall is 25 feet tall!
During the ming dynasty (1368-1644), the wall was enlarged and renovated
It can be seen from Earth orbit, but contrary from legend it is not visible from the moon.
Go there for facts on great wall!
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF BOUNDARIES?
The great wall is an impressive boundary!
Now why was the great wall built? Just so we Americans would aspire to go visit China? I don’t think so. There are two reasons the great wall was built.
1. To keep people out (for protection)
Armies were stationed along the wall as a first line of defense against the invading armies of the Huns. Signal fires from the wall provided early warning of an attack.
And today, I want you to know that boundaries in your life are necessary for your protection!
--To keep people in!
Boundaries are necessary because they set up limits for us. As long as you live within these boundaries, you will be safe.
So too, the boundaries you set up in your life, are there as limits.
And both of these reasons are good things! They are blessings.
So I want to help you put up fence. To mark out your boundaries so that you can begin to live a life that you are called to live!
And I know what you’re thinking, “Mark, I’m an adult. I don’t want boundaries.”
Well I’ve got news for you, you all ready have SOME sort of boundaries. We’re memorizing them this month. The 10 commandments. Have you killed anyone lately? Have you stolen anything? No? Why? Because you have some boundaries set up. Those are easy boundaries to establish. Those are boundaries that God has set up! God said DO NOT MURDER. DO NOT STEAL. In those areas, God has placed a sign that reads: NO TRESPASSING. But what about the “grey” areas of life? Grey areas of life? What could you possibly mean? I’m talking about areas where the lines are not so easily established.
Those things that the Bible doesn’t specifically say anything about. Do you have boundaries established in your own mind concerning those things?
All I’m encouraging you to do, is set up some more boundaries.
And so our parallel text is found in Romans 14:1-3;
Romans 14:1-3; 4-22
“1) Accept him whose faith is weak, without passing judgment on disputable matters.