Summary: This sermon explores John 15:9-17 to see just what it means to remain in Jesus. A number of stories from Sermon Central on board that may be useful
• John 15:9-17New International Version (NIV)
• 9 “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10 If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 11 I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. 12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. 17 This is my command: Love each other.
In the old days people would finish their letters –
I remain – yours sincerely
In some sense it doesn’t matter too much where you started if you don’t finish it off.
You need to remain in Christ – remaining staying constant is really important.
I have known many Christians who were sky rockets they were lit some gunpowder went off in their Spirit and they hit the sky for a moment and sent sparks in all direction but in the end they fizzed out and they were just burnt out rockets amounting to nothing.
Others started small like a glowing ember and yet burnt brighter and brighter through decades and sometimes for ten twenty thirty forty fifty sixty or more years.
I love visiting my friend Betty Sukigawa in Ross home in Dunedin because the fire still burns strongly in her heart.
if anyone remained in Christ then it seems e, Bev Shea at 104 years certainly could carry that badge. He died in April 2013.
Many referred to that twinkle, a sincere way of making you feel at ease, as if you were the most important person he had encountered.
Billy Graham once said, “I don’t believe I’ve ever heard him utter an unkind or critical word about anyone.”
Forget that Mr. Shea was a two-time Grammy award winner, nominated 10 times. Or that he released more than 70 albums. Or that he holds the Guinness Book of World Records for singing to the largest live audience at more than 220 million. Mr. Shea’s humility was what set the talented gospel singer apart, always deflecting any praise to his heavenly Father. The call is all about consistency remaining in Christ – We are called to remain in Jesus – You are not called to be like a rocket going up but a warm glowing light.
Matthew chapter 5 verse 6 saya "Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.
You and I are called to shine the light of Christ not just for a moment but continuously through all seasons of our lives. That is not always easy God wants you to shine. The word that Jesus uses this morning is to remain in him. How do we maintain that shining presence of Christ continuously – There are key teachings in the scriptures this morning I would like to draw them out for you!!
There are some parallels with long distance running and I want to use the metaphor of marathon running to draw out these points this morning.
To remain in the Christian race is really important the scriptures call us to stay faithful to the very end.
To remain in Christ you need to begin with the right vision or motivation – In Hebrews 12 we are told to Run with Perseverance
1Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, 2fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.
At the beginning of our reading this morning the relationship with Jesus is held out as critically important John chapter 15 9 “As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love.