Summary: Living a godly life is not popular but it’s possible. How do we do it?
Living a Godly Life in an Ungodly World
Intro: A teenage Muslim student accepted Christ in Deerborn, Michigan. She eventually took the challenge of being at See You At the Pole. She was the only one who showed up out of her 85% Muslim school. She endured a lot of persecution, even from her own sister who went to the same school.
Doesn’t it feel like you are sometimes the only person willing to take a stand for truth? It could be a lonely thing.
Let’s face it, living a godly life is not popular—but it’s possible. Not only is it possible to live a godly life but also God expects it from us. There is great motivation for us to live a godly life.
What does it mean to be godly? It means to have a love for the things of God and to walk in the ways of God.
Titus 2:11-14, “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope—the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.”
I. What do we see as our motivation for godliness?
1. Looking back on what Christ did. That is what grace is. Grace is God’s favor to us when we don’t deserve it. It comes from his heart that says no strings attached. “It” teaches us to say “no.”
2. Another motivation is looking forward to what Christ will do! The blessed hope—his appearing.
“But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything in it will be laid bare. Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming.” 2Peter 3:10-12
In other words Christ’s past act and his future coming teaches me that I need to hold on to this. What Christ has done is exactly what I need. I would be a fool to turn my back on this.
How do we live a godly life in an ungodly world?
Let’s turn to the pages of Scripture to find some answers..
1. First of all, you need the right perspective
“Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales; rather, train yourself to be godly. For physical training is some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” 4:7-8
Paul is not downplaying physical exercise. Let’s face it we need it. Paul spent about three years in Ephesus where there was a great coliseum in which the Olympic Games were held at times. The coliseum seated 100,000 people, and foot races were often held there. Paul’s emphasis on godliness rather than on physical exercise is because the Ephesians were a people given over to games and athletics. We are also that kind of a nation. Many of our cities have coliseums where great spectacles are conducted, and many believers put more emphasis on athletics than they do on the things of God. This should not be. Physical exercise has its place and value for some things. But godliness has value for all things holding promise for both the present life and the life to come. In other words the only result of physical exercise is what you gain from it in this world. You will get a new body one you go to heaven one day. For some of you that is really good news, for others it’s not. Godliness has value for the world to come. Godliness has value for all things. It has value for your marriage, your occupation, your home, your ministry. It brings meaning to all of those things.
2. Then we need the right approach.
How do we approach godliness? You and I both know that we don’t just decide today to be godly. It takes determination and discipline. There are so many competing distractions out there. So many things in our world that want our allegiance.
Keep in mind that God does his part but we have to do our own. He will grow us but we have to give him something to work with. If you want to live a godly life understand that you are going to have to work at it.
You will learn more about some specific habits necessary for spiritual growth when you take class 201. I want to encourage those of you who have completed Class 101 to sign up for Class 201.