Summary: Our Core Values - the essential elements of effective church life.
FOR THESE THINGS I LIVE
Our Principle of ‘Life’
This morning I want to commence a series of messages that are, I believe, vital, fundamental, indispensable not only for His People Community Church, but for the Christian Church as a whole. I would commend them to you as of first importance during the times we are in. You can find the subjects for these messages on our Web Page, in our Constitution, Section 4. They are our Core Purposes. I started to call this series, "For These Things I Would Die", and then I was reminded that there is a strange anomaly in the Christian Church:- there are many things we would gladly give our lives to defend, that we would be willing to die for, but that we are not willing to live for. So I renamed the series, "For These Things I Live".
What are these Core Purposes that will form the basis for our study over the next few months? Christ Centered, Spirit Filled, Word Based, New Testament Community, Non-Denominational, Contemporary, Missions Minded and Family Church.
These truths are not new truths. There is no such thing as new truths. If it new it’s not true, and if its true, its not new. There is such a thing as freshly discovered truth, or freshly applied truth, or freshly revealed truth, but there is no such thing as new truth. That is why we receive truth by revelation - revelation implies by its very nature seeing something that is already there.
Our first Core Principle is CHRIST CENTERED.
This morning’s message is about life. If you are looking for a title, and I trust you are, and you are ready to take notes, and again, I trust you are, the title of the message this morning is, "The Principle of Life".
If somebody stopped you on the street and told you that after considerable investigation and many significant case studies over an extended period of time and backed by almost all of the world’s top authorities in the field, they had come up with irrefutable evidence that the realty of vitality, success, victory, richness, fulfillment, peace, joy and happiness can all distilled into one secret, and that their secret was not very complex - as a matter of fact, it consisted of only one principle that they would guarantee was successful, they were thinking of writing a book on it - "The One Habit of Highly Effective People", and that they were willing to let you have it for nothing, would you like it, if you are anywhere half as hungry as I am, you would grab it with both hands.
We this morning that is what I want to give you - that one principle, the only principle you need for LIFE. It should excite you to know there is only one principle you need for all you want in life, and it will give you life in all its richness, life in all its fulness, life in all its meaning, life in all its significance. I would be so bold as to say that there is actually only one principle of life. All other true principles of life are simply derivatives of this principle, or different ways of restating this principle. What is that one key, that one secret, that one truth, that one principle that you and I need for life?
PRAY - READ
Please open your Bibles to the book of Colossians and chapter 3 - and while you are turning there allow me to tell of something I realized this week.
Somewhere in this world a women gives life through birth to a child every 4 seconds. She must be found and stopped immediately.
Colossians 3:1-4 "Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your mind on the things above, not on the things that are on earth. For you have died and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is our life, is revealed, then you also will be revealed with Him in glory."
That is not simply an New Testament principle. Listen to what Moses so clearly declares in
Deut. 3:20 " Choose to love the Lord your God and to obey Him and commit yourself to Him, for He is your life." [NLT]
There are three things I want to leave you with this morning as we look at what it means to be CHRIST CENTERED collectively as a congregation and what it means to be CHRIST CENTERED in the way we live individually. That is important because being CHRIST CENTERED is the antithesis of the path the world is on, it is diametrically opposed to the way the world lives. Here is the word that describes the world - SELF CENTERED. SELF CENTERED is the essential bias of the unregenerate heart and it is the potential weakness of the regenerate heart. For the unsaved, life is lived rather selfishly. No matter what garments of humanistic philanthropy or benevolence they may cloak it in, it is, never the less, SELF CENTERED. SELF CENTERED living is self damaging in the short term, and ultimately self destroying in the long term. Salvation is God’s way of turning you from a SELF CENTERED, self damaging and self destroying life to a CHRIST CENTERED way of life. Living a Christ centered life is neither form nor method, it is source.