3-Week Series: Double Blessing

Sermons

Summary: There are 5 symptoms of a submarine Christian. Thank God He has given us 4 resources to be transformed to productive Christians!

SUBMARINE CHRISTIANS

John 19:31-39

INTRODUCTION

A. HUMOR

1. Mark Jordan is a high school teacher. The other morning he was pulled over by the police for speeding right in front of the High School where he works.

2. The police officer came to his window and asked him for his driver’s license and registration. As the minutes ticked by, Mark’s students began to drive past. Some honked their horns, others hooted, and still others stopped and wagged their finger at him or shouted “Look who’s in trouble now!”

3. Finally the officer asked Mark if he was a teacher at the school, and he told him “Yes.” The officer smiled and said, "I think you've paid your debt to society," and left without giving him a ticket!

B. TEXT

31 Now it was the day of Preparation, and the next day was to be a special Sabbath. Because the Jewish leaders did not want the bodies left on the crosses during the Sabbath, they asked Pilate to have the legs broken and the bodies taken down. 32 The soldiers therefore came and broke the legs of the first man who had been crucified with Jesus, and then those of the other. 33 But when they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. 34 Instead, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus’ side with a spear, bringing a sudden flow of blood and water. 35 The man who saw it has given testimony, and his testimony is true. He knows that he tells the truth, and he testifies so that you also may believe. 36 These things happened so that the scripture would be fulfilled: “Not one of his bones will be broken,” 37 and, as another scripture says, “They will look on the one they have pierced.”

38 Later, Joseph of Arimathea asked Pilate for the body of Jesus. Now Joseph was a disciple of Jesus, but secretly because he feared the Jewish leaders. With Pilate’s permission, he came and took the body away. 39 He was accompanied by Nicodemus, the man who earlier had visited Jesus at night.

C. THESIS

1. If you type in “Submarine Christian” into a search engine on the internet, you will find a wealth of descriptions and ideas about what a submarine Christian is, none of them too flattering.

2. However, the Submarine Christian is a real phenomena today, and it’s important that we take a look at the characteristics of a Submarine Christian and see if we might be one.

3. Further, we want to find out how to counter the influence which is promoting such a compromised form of Christianity, if indeed the Lord would classify it as Christianity at all!

I. CHARACTERISTICS OF THE SUBMARINE CHRISTIAN

A. SILENT, DON’T WITNESS

1. A submarine is a submersible underwater vessel used primarily to sneak up unobserved on enemy ships and emplacements. Their key characteristic is silence and undetectability, even underwater. They are stealth vehicles, similar to the stealth fighter aircraft, except under water.

2. Submarine Christians are ones who keep quiet about Christ. Witnessing is not part of who they are; that’s someone else’s job. To them God made two categories of Christians: one which is outgoing and supposed to witness, and the other which is reserved and isn’t expected to witness. Submarine Christians consider themselves the second type.

3. Of course, that’s not at all true! ALL Christians are called to witness; none are excused. We may not all be called to be lawyers, but we are all called to be witnesses. That’s why the Holy Spirit came, to equip and empower us!

B. NOT NOTICED AS CHRISTIANS

1. Pilipino pastor Xiao Yang [on Facebook] describes this; “A submarine sometimes goes under water and sometimes rises above it; it decides for itself when to do either. Same for Christians-they decide to submerge at work and emerge during bible-study, fellowship etc.”

2. “A lady sister recently was baptized. She found out that a lady on her job was also a Christian for almost 10 years. She said, “You could have preached to me a few years ago.” She expressed the thought that it would be so good if she'd believed earlier.

3. “This suggests that Christians not only do not spread the gospel to those around them. Also, people can't tell they are Christians while at work. “Submarine” Christians put on one face while at church, then another while in the society, at home etc.

4. “Their faith and their lives are completely separated. This is no good for their own spiritual growth, or for the spread of the gospel. Faith and life, work and spirituality should go hand-in-hand. Christians are the light and salt of the world. They need to exert their influence on it.”

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