Summary: This sermon is based on Paul’s statement in Phil 3:10-11 "All I want is to know Christ". Do we view our christian walk in these terms?
New Year Challenge – A closer Walk
Bumping into Ross-anne at Supermarket
At the supermarket this past week, I was at the meat counter when this girl came up and threw her arms around me
Fortunately I knew her
She belongs to a Christian group, “Cornerstone” who operates an evangelistic ministry in Ballarat.
We hadn’t seen each other for over 6 months and we spent some time catching up with what was going on in her life and the life of her team.
It was great to hear the news of what God was doing in their lives, but I did have one regret.
The leader of the team, Nerida, had become engaged and moved back to Burke
My disappointment came from not catching up with her before she left.
This is what happens though when we don’t stay in contact with one another
we lose track of what is happening in each other’s lives.
It the same with God. When we don’t stay in touch with Him as we should, we lose track of his agenda for our lives.
As we start a New Year, it’s important we step back and evaluate our relationship with our Great God
For me personally, the most important aspect of the changes our church has been through is this aspect of how we now relate to God
Instead of trying to relate to God through the law, it is now defined through a personal relationship of love
No longer is it a matter of trying to win God’s approval by performing impossible tasks
I know I have been accepted into a personal relationship with the God of the universe through the blood of Jesus Christ
This change has a dramatic influence on how we practice our Christianity
Let me ask you a question
Think of two individuals – both Christians
One gets up early and spends time in prayer and Bible Study before heading off to work
The other gets up late and rushes off to work without touching bases with God
Which one does God love the most?
God loves them both equally – God does not love in degrees like we do,
nor does he love conditionally - “If you do this, I will love you”
How would we be if this is how we related to our spouses
We would never tolerate this in our own personal relationships, so why do we think God operates in this way
God loves us all, period!
Does he like it when we talk to him and read his word – absolutely, but we can’t equate this with His loving us more
John 5:39-40 “You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life;
like the Pharisees we can study the Bible all we like to acquire knowledge about God
But knowledge about God is not going to give us eternal life
and these are they which testify of Me.
the scriptures, the law and the prophets were given to lead us to the source of true life, Jesus Christ
40 “But you are not willing to come to Me that you may have life.
only a personal relationship with Jesus Christ can bring eternal life