Summary: Paul wanted to lay out some basic essential for living the Christian life
Date Written: October 6, 2012
Date Preached: October 7, 2012
Church: Oak Park BC (AM)
Series: A Series In Romans
Title: The Essentials of True Christian Living
Text: Romans 12:9-13
ETS: Paul gave the church in Rome the essentials for True Christian living
ESS: This passage gives believers today the essentials for True Christian living
The one think that remember about when I joined the Air Force was just how my world changed… in a radical manner…
I can still remember that first night at Lackland AFB in San Antonio, TX. I can remember just how scared I was when our Drill Instructor came walking down the sidewalk toward us @ 11:30pm and all we could hear was the click click click of the taps on his shoes before we ever saw a body….
I can remember that from that moment until the moment I graduated from Basic training my world and everything in it revolved around this man… He ‘instructed’ us on when we got up in the morning to when we went to bed at night.
He told us when we were going to eat and what we were going to wear… he told us what we were going to do each day and where we were going to go… This man even told us how we were supposed to make our bed and fold our underwear!
Now when I entered the military I entered a world where my individual choices and my individual desires were taken away… And then I was built back up thru the teaching of the Drill instructor who taught me what to do and how to live and be the soldier that my country needed…
Now when I read these verses from Paul to the Roman church my thoughts went back to my time in basic training… and God revealed a spiritual parallel here in this passage!
Now there are many of you here who NEVER experienced the military OR had to deal with something like basic training… but I believe you can imagine what it could have been like!
You see it is like this… when you join the military and go to basic training, you enter into a world where all you were before you got there NO LONGER mattered, but the only thing that mattered was what you were to become!
When we come to Christ… it is very similar. When we enter the kingdom of God, we come to Christ with a past and a way of living that we have set… but that no longer matters!
What matters is that we now are being formed and shaped BY the Holy Spirit and the only thing that matters is what God desires us to become!
We come to Christ stripped of everything...as we surrender ALL of who we are… when we accept Christ we surrender our wants and desires and they are stripped away! Then we are torn down to the very spiritual bone by the Holy Spirit!
Then thru the indwelling of that same Holy Spirit, Christ begins to build us up… to be the believer and servant that we are called to be… to be a warrior willing to grow and expand God’s kingdom!
When I was in basic training, all of what I THOUGHT was right was taken away and I was TOLD what was right in the sight of the US Air Force…
I was shown the right way to make my bed, the right way to fold my clothes, the right way to walk, the right way to talk, the right way to run, the right way to interact with those in my flight…
ALL I knew about what was right or wrong no longer mattered… what mattered is that the US Air Force had brought me on board and now I was compelled to adjust my ways to THEIR ways & leave MY old ways behind me!
I saw so many young men come and go all because they refused to surrender to the US Air Force’s way of doing things and they insisted that they do things THEIR way…
In our passage this morning I can see Paul laying out some basic essentials for living the Christian life that Christ had called them to. Paul had instructed them to surrender their hearts and lives in v.1-2…
Do you remember that instruction that Paul gave? He called the believers in Rome to submit themselves as ‘living sacrifices’ and NOT to be molded by the world but allow God to mold them… and if they would do that they would know the will of God!
Our drill instructor said on MANY occasions… MAGOTS! If you will just listen to me, you will survive this training and you will become the soldiers/airmen that we want you to be… BUT if you choose NOT to listen to me, your life is going to be miserable!