Summary: This is the 2nd sermon in the America Series...
“The Answers To America’s Problem”
*A preacher went to call on one of the ladies in his congregation. When
he arrived at her house, her front door was open with the screen door
closed. Windows were open and the TV was on. He walked up to the door and
knocked. “Sister Jones. Sister Jones.” There was no response. So he
knocked again. “Sister Jones, its your preacher.” There was no answer. So
he decided to do something cute. He pulled out one of his business cards
and wrote on the back of it a Scripture verse - Revelation 3:20 which
says, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock.” He left and didn’t think
much more of it. The next Sunday as his family was headed out to their
car after church, he noticed a note on his windshield which read had just
one verse written on it: Genesis 3:10 which says, “I heard you in the
garden and I was afraid because I was naked; so I hid.”
*Last week I began to discuss the issue of morality in America and today
I want to answer the dilemma I raised then by sharing with you three
questions I have learned to ask when considering ethics and morals. These
three questions allow me to keep a gospel of grace and still insist that
we be a holy and pure bride for the LORD Jesus.
I. How should I live in view of the CHARACTER of Jesus?
*I believe a good starting place is asking the question: What would Jesus
Do? Many of you have probably seen the Christian garb that includes those
four letters on it: WWJD? I think some of that is actually a good
reminder for us to ask ourselves what would Jesus do.
*1 Peter 2:21 says: For you have been called for this purpose, since
Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example for you to follow in
His steps, (NAS)
*The Greek used there for “example” was the word that they used of that
plate that they would use to teach their children to write. And they
would put that paper over that plate and they would trace on that plate.
And Peter’s point is that what you’ve got to do is you’ve got to pattern
or trace your life after the example that Jesus left. When I was in Bible
college I was taught about Pattern Theology, and we were warned of its
problems. My feeling is there isn’t a problem as long as Jesus is the
pattern. If Jesus is the pattern I believe in pattern theology.
*So we’ve got to regularly ask ourselves: Am I trying to trace Jesus or
am I trying to trace the pattern of the world? Your task as a disciple of
Jesus is to try to lay your life over His and try to reproduce His image.
*One of my favorite stories along this line involves a man by the name of
Bill Roberts. Now Milton Jones preaches for the Northwest Church of
Christ in Seattle, WA. He also happens to be the preaching professor at
Puget Sound Christian College. One Sunday Milton was preaching on the
second coming of Jesus, that judgment might come any day. A member of his
church brought Bill Roberts for the first time to the building. And Bill
Roberts called Milton the next Monday and said, “Can I come see you? I
need to be baptized.” So Milton said, “Come on over!”
When Bill Roberts got there he said, “I need to be baptized, Jesus is
coming back any minute.” So Milton said, “Well let’s study a little bit.”
And he opened up his Bible. And Bill Roberts said, “Well that’s a first.
That’s the first time I’ve ever seen an open Bible.” So Milton began to
study with Bill about what it means to be baptized. And this went on for
about two hours and Bill reached over and closed Milton’s Bible and said,
“I promise you, Milton. I’ll read this for the rest of my life, but could
I please get baptized? Jesus is coming back.” And Bill kept his promise.
He attended and been a member there for two or three years.
One Sunday Milton preached out of 1 Peter 2:21 and he told the story of
the writing of that great classic by Sheldon, “What Would Jesus Do?” And
he asked his church, “I want to know today how many of you are ready to
do whatever Jesus would do? Write me a letter, come down front. I want to
know today, who in this church is ready to do what Jesus would do?” They
stood to sing the invitation song and out stepped Bill Roberts.
*And Milton expected Bill to say, “That was the finest sermon on