Summary: Part 1 of 4 in the series Power for Living. The next four weeks you will get acquainted with the eighth chapter of the book of Romans which will give us a picture of what our daily lives are to look like if we claim to be Christ-followers.
The Daily Christian Life
Power for Living
Wildwind Community Church
David K. Flowers
July 29, 2007
Good morning. I hope you have come with Bibles this morning. My goal today and for the next four weeks is to get you really well acquainted with the eighth chapter of the book of Romans because it gives us a picture of what our daily lives are to look like if we claim to be Christ-followers. Those here today who do not make that claim, I want to talk to you briefly. First, welcome to Wildwind. I am glad you are here. Believe it or not, you make this church what it is. Much of the freshness, the energy, and the enthusiasm that characterizes this church comes from the steady flow of people into our church who have not really bought into Christianity yet. Our church is a place where Christians can come to celebrate Jesus Christ as the forgiver of their sins and the leader of their lives. It is also a place where those who are not yet Christians can come and observe, ask questions, and find out what Christianity is all about. We are serious about both of those things. This series we are starting today is one of the few series I do during a year that is directed specifically toward those who are already Christ-followers. That does not mean there will be nothing for you to learn today, I’m just asking for your patience as I might attend to some things that might seem kind of “in-house” – that is to say, between Christians. Nevertheless I welcome you again, and I promise you that you will not leave here today feeling like you were sitting at a table where you were not welcome. Much the contrary, and you will see that as we proceed.
I know not everyone brought a Bible today, and that’s fine – everything we’re looking at will be on the screen – but if you brought your Bible, please turn to Romans chapter 1. Table of contents. New Testament. Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, Acts, Romans. Find it? Good. When you get to that page, flip the pages until you get to the big number 8 – that’s chapter 8. Today we’ll be looking at the first eight verses of chapter 8.
Before we read the text, I just want to ask you a question. What is the main difference between someone who is a Christian and someone who is not a Christian? The main difference between Christians and those who are not Christians is their source of power. We all have a source of power in our lives – a place our energy comes from, something that focuses us, guides us in a certain direction, and motivates and inspires us. For some the source of power might be their belief in themselves. For some the source of power might be a deceased loved one who they see themselves as now living on behalf of or keeping a promise to. For some it might be money. For some the source of power might be what they might call an inner light or a higher power. For the Christian, none of these things are the source of power. For the Christian the source of power is God – and specifically God’s Spirit alive in us. Now this sounds weird, but it’s not at all. After all, every person living has a spirit – it’s that part of them that is uniquely them. If there is a God, then it makes sense that God would have a Spirit, doesn’t it? And since God is not matter but spirit, it makes sense that God’s spirit could go wherever it wanted to go, doesn’t it? And since God’s spirit could go anywhere, it is completely logical to believe that God’s spirit might choose to take up residence with our spirits, and become the source of power in our lives. The Bible, in fact, goes to great lengths to describe to us how this is precisely what happens in the life of a Christian.
This is what I want to address with you for the next few weeks. This series is called Power for Living, and in this series I want to talk to you about the source of power in our lives. I want to talk to you about how God’s Holy Spirit will free us from struggling and suffering, in ways that are perhaps not so obvious. I want to talk to you about how the Holy Spirit will ultimately free the entire creation from struggling and suffering, and then I want to conclude with assurances we have that this will happen.
In other words, what I want to address with you is what it means to live your life with a day to day belief in the power of God’s Spirit working in you, and working in the events of your life and this world. This is what Romans chapter 8 talks about. It’s one of the most important chapters of the Bible for a Christian to know, understand, and hope in. Let’s look at our text, Romans 8:1-8.