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Summary: Message 17 in our exposition of Nehemiah continuing an exploration of what it means to be people of distinction.

Chico Alliance Church

"People of Distinction" Part Two

REVIEW

We have been gathering data about elements of revival from Nehemiah's journal. We must first focus on buidling protective walls. We need a good, protected environment consisting of a solid Biblical walls.

Then, with walls in place and the enemy at bay, we can give our full attention to cultivating a deeper walk with the Lord as a family.

This happens as we develop in five basic areas.

1--Rally together

2--Read and study the word together

3--Rejoice and worship together

4--Reflect together

5--Resolve together

Resolve to make changes in four specific areas.

FIRST--My Response to the Word

Commit to a life of discipline by the Word. (hear and obey)

SECOND--My Relationship to the World System

Commit to a life of distinctiveness in the world.

THIRD--My Relationship to God

Commit to a life of devotion to God.

FOURTH--My response to giving.

Commit to a life of dedication of all my resources to God.

Today we turn our focus once again on our relationship to this world system.

PRAY

INTRODUCTION

We are all people of distinction. Whether it be your nose, your ears, your walk, your diet, your musical abilities, or your aptitudes. Each of us have distinctions that are characteristic of our family. Some of those distinctions are genetic, some are learned by exposure to our parents, our peers, our culture, our environment. In the same way, we have certain distinctions as those born into God's family, some by spiritual genetics, some by transformation and exposure. We are special people, people of distinction. This distinction is called "sanctification", "holiness".

The word to sanctify means to set apart as special for a special use. It can refer to things or people. The items for temple use were sanctified.

The priests were sanctified.

The people were sanctified.

There are three sheres in which this concept applies to Christians.

*Calling

*Conduct

*Covenant

1--Distinct People By Calling (past)

But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 1Pe 2:9

For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Eph 2:10

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! 2Co 5:17

And by that will, we have been sanctified through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all...because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being sanctified. Heb 10:10,14

I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. Joh 17:14-17

I am sending you to them to open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.' Act 26:18

By reason of our calling, we are special people with a special mission in this world. Not only are we set apart and distinct by calling, we are to demonstrate that distinction by our behavior.

2--Distinct People By Conduct (present)

If we are to be light in this world, there must be a distinction between those who claim to know Jesus Christ. There must be a marked difference in behavior. Over and over in Scripture, we are called to demonstrate a behavior different than the world in which we live. Mostly what happens is that the Christian community has paralleled the world in its slide into corruption.

For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. Eph 2:10

As a result, he does not live the rest of his earthly life for evil human desires, but rather for the will of God. For you have spent enough time in the past doing what pagans choose to do - living in debauchery, lust, drunkenness, orgies, carousing and detestable idolatry. They think it strange that you do not plunge with them into the same flood of dissipation, and they heap abuse on you. The end of all things is near. Therefore be clear minded and self-controlled so that you can pray. 1Pe 4:7

Titus 2-3

We are called to walk different than the culture and world around us. We are called to respond as Christ would respond.

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