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Summary: As we look into the face of God, we see His holiness and our sin. Thank God He is at work in us to transform us into His image from glory to glory.

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Cape Fear Alliance Church

Sunday Morning, August 30, 2003 (AM)

Malachi’s Mirror! (Part One)

Malachi 1

OPENING ILLUSTRATION:

A mirror is a very revealing thing. It generally shows whatever is in front of it . . . warts and all.

-It can tell you when you’re having a bad hair day,

or when you’re having a “no hair day!”

-Or, that you don’t have as much as you used to!

-There are those who use it to put your “face” on every morning.

-It’s applications in industry are endless, just a few are :

-dentists . . . dental work

-astronomers . . . telescopes

-mechanics . . . under the hood of a car

-As a rule, the mirror gives you a pretty objective view of what’s in front of it.

(2 Corinthians 3:17-18) “Now the Lord is the Spirit; and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. But we all, with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory.”

Observations about these couple verses:

1. When we love the Lord, He is at work in us, transforming us into His image.

2. The Lord accomplishes this as we read and meditate on His Word.

3. His Word and the work of the Holy Spirit in us is like a mirror, revealing two things:

a. His Holiness . . . . His sinlessness!

b. Our shortcomings . . . . Our sin!

4. When we recognize our sin, and desire a change, He does the changing in us . . . notice, the passive tense in verse 18 . . . “being transformed.”

Understanding that, I want to spend a few minutes this morning looking at the book of Malachi.

-He was the last prophet before the inter-testamental years (400 years with no communication between God and His chosen people.

-This message was delivered to the Israelites at the time of Nehemiah, after the exile to Babylon, and after the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem.

-So, why is it worth our time to look at it now?

-Because God has not changed . . . He is still the same God today as the God who created all that was created.

-What pleased God then still pleases God today.

-What has changed is the way God communicates with His Chosen people today.

-In the day of Abraham He communicated audibly.

-By the time of this passage, He spoke to His people through prophets, like Malachi.

-And today, when you accept Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior, He abides (lives) in us.

The Roman Road

Romans 3:28 “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”

Romans 5:8 “But God demonstrated His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

Romans 6:23 “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Romans 10:13 “Whoever will call upon the name of the Lord will be saved.”

Romans 10:9 “that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved.”

IT’S ALL ABOUT ESTABLISHING A RELATIONSHIP!

When you’ve come to a place where God has closed the gap between you and Him . . . taken care of the sin problem . . . then He has now established a relationship with you!

ILLUSTRATION:

This week we’ve had the privilege to spend time with my brother, Steve, and family.

We cherish our time together . . . because we have a great relationship.

It doesn’t matter whether we’re in North Carolina or Minnesota . . . it’s the time spent together.

There are a lot of things that both families like to do, and yet, we don’t have to do anything . . . because it’s about being together . . . . it’s about relationships.

It’s a dynamic thing! . . . give and take . . . requiring the involvement of both parties here.

Once you come to know God, and He takes care of the sin problem in your life, then it too is all about relationships!

You learn what pleases Him and you do those things, because you love Him.

God is All-Powerful, All-Knowing, and All-Present . . . so He already knows what is best for you . . . . and what you need . . . . and . . . what you want!

So . . . how do you know what pleases God?

YOU READ HIS WORD AND PRAY!

It seems these days that we get so caught up in debating the grey areas of what is pleasing to God . . . there is enough in black and white . . . and RED . . . to last us a lifetime!

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