Summary: Folks, our church is at a crossroads as we enter 2007 - many of us are standing at the juncture wondering what to do! A church can’t make impact on it’s community if some pick up their marbles and go home! If some never fellowship, if some never serve!
When you think of the word intensity, what comes to mind...
Webster’s definition: earnest, fervent, showing strong emotion, firm purpose, great seriousness. Which is the result of something developing within one’s self.
Once when Alabama was playing Auburn, Coach Bear Bryant sent in his 2nd string quarterback with instructions to run on every play and he had better not pass the ball. Alabama led by three points and only had to run the clock out to win. Three downs in a row Alabama was crushed. On the fourth down with a few seconds left and Alabama ahead the quarterback took the snap. Looking into the end zone he saw his receiver so open the temptation was too great. He threw the ball only to see it intercepted. Though he was the slowest player on the field the 2nd string quarterback ran down the interceptor and Alabama won the game.
After the game coach Dye of Auburn said to Bear Bryant, “How did that boy run down my boy who was so much faster?”Bear Bryant answered “Simple,” Your boy was running to score a touchdown – my boy was running to keep me from killing him!”
Pictures...which one best describes your intensity for Jesus?
“The greatest threat to the Christian world today is not the evil outside, but rather the apathy inside” ...Charles Stanley
“Apathy” - lack of concern, feelings and passion.
Paul writes to a young man to keep him committed and intense about Jesus.
Notice Where Our Intensity Comes From:
• The Commandment. Vs. 11,14
• The Calling. Vs. 12
“Fight” = Agony
Literally Paul is saying, “ agonize over the agony of faith”.
Jude 3 “Contend(agonize) earnestly (intensely) for the faith”
(Keep on until victory - like an athlete competing)
• The Confession . Vs. 12b, 13
Probably his baptism or ordination.
Not a cheap confession, when compared to Jesus’ confession leading to death.
• The Coming . Vs. 14, 15
Here’s the Key: All of these 4 points don’t mean anything to our life if Jesus isn’t all-powerful, all King and all Lord over our lives in 2007!
Let me ask...what good is it to fight the good fight of faith, contend earnestly for the faith, if Jesus isn’t Lord? And if that’s the case then you will live a life full of compromise and conflict?
The level of intensity for Jesus Christ is determined by this action - We must first dethrone self and enthrone Jesus!
Ben Franklin said, “A man wrapped up in himself makes for a very small package.”
Robert Owens said, “If I am half full of my self, there is no way I can be full of God.”
LIFEPOINT: God’s Kingdom means that He is King in His kingdom and that means - citizenship without Lordship is impossible!
The first person to receive a patten for the wheel barrow was Jed Smith. He was a strong Christian and devoted to an intense walk with God. He owned a wheelbarrow business, and at the entrance of his manufacturing plant was a sign that read, “If you are like a wheel barrow - going no farther than you are pushed - you need not apply for work here!”
Folks, our church is at a crossroads as we enter 2007 - many of us are standing at the juncture wondering what to do! A church can’t make impact on it’s community if some pick up their marbles and go home! If some never fellowship, if some never serve, if some have sour attitudes and if some never grow in Christ!
Some of may want this church to stay a country club for the saved, but folks, FBC is more than a hospital for sinners - it’s an intensive care unit for the sin broken soul!
Individual Intensity Inventory
1. Jesus Christ is my Lord when I obey the initial prompting of the Holy Spirit without hesitation or argument.
John 14: 26 “And I pray the Father and He will give you another Helper that He may abide with you forever.”
Comforter = comes along side prompting, guiding and leading!
Ephesians 5:18 “And do not be drunk with wine which in excess, but be filled with the Spirit .”
2. Jesus Christ is my Lord when I am committed to fulfilling His will for my life before I even know what He will require of me.
Romans 12:2 “And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”
“Do not be conformed” = displaying an outward old expression that does not reflect the inward new creation of the believer. Paul is implying that it’s happening!
J. B. Phillips translates this, “Don’t let the world around you squeeze you into its mold.”