Summary: As Christians we need to re-examine why we do what we do from time to time, to make sure it is for His glory.
Introduction -- Why are we here? What and who are we living for? Before we give the same "pat" answers, we need to re-examine ourselves to be sure we are living for Christ and not for ourselves.
I. The Motivation of Paul
Why did Paul preach, risk his life, and give up the pleasures of this life? What motivated this man?
A. A Desire To Be Acceptable, v9
1. "make it our goal" = our desire, ambition, what we value - - Paul’s goal/ambition was to be pleasing before Christ.
2. we all want to be liked, Paul wanted to be liked by God -- we know God loves us, but is He pleased with us, does He like us right now?
(Illustration -- we love our wives and children, but there are times we are not happy or pleased with them, there may be times we love them but don’t even like them that much at a particular moment - Paul wanted to live so he would be pleasing/liked by God at all times.)
3. Just because we go to church or serve on committees does not mean we are pleasing to God -- why and how we go and serve are just as important!
B. Demand to be Accountable, v10
1. we will all stand before the judgment seat of Christ and give an account of ourself.
2. the judgment seat is a place of:
a). Revealing - "appear" means to be made manifest, unvield before Christ, nothing hidden.
b). Reckoning - we will receive what we deserve.
c). Reward & Rejoicing - for all we have done for Christ.
3. Paul wanted to hear, "well done, My good and faithful servant," not "nice try, but needed some work."
4. In verses 11-13 Paul tells us he did not care what others thought because he did not need to answer to them.
C. Demonstration of the amazing Love of Christ, 14
1. "the love of Christ compells me" refers to the banks of a river keeping it flowing in the right direction.
2. The love of Christ propells me to live only for Him.
3. Remembering that He died out of love for me keeps me in focus and on focus.
II. Modifications of Paul
We know why paul lived the way he did, now we will consider how he lived as a result of this motivation.
A. Looks at Life Differently, v16
1. Paul used to look at the world "from the flesh", or a worldy point of view. But now he sees it all through the eyes of Christ.
2. Many Christians view life as either secular or sacred, we need to see that all of our life is sacred and set apart for God - no matter what we are doing!
(Illustration - many think that God only cares if we give our 10% and we can do whatever we want with the rest. True stewardship is realizing that it all belongs to God.)
B. Lives for Christ and not Himself, v15
1. Paul used to live for himslef - looked out for number one. Now he lives for Jesus alone.
2. What we do for Christ should be our best - God will not accept anything less!
(Illustration - I used to complain to my wife when she would clean the room we had stayed in so well. I told her no one else cleaned them that well and the people who would stay here next would not care if it was that clean. She said she was not doing it for them or the owners, but for Christ. I could not argue anymore!)
Conclusion -- What is your motivation in this life? Before you answer, make sure that your life is modified to demonstrate your motivation.