Summary: This sermon discusses the importance of loving one another, supporting one another and caring about one another as members of the family of God.

Title: The Family of God

Text: 1 Peter 4:7-17 (16)

Date: 8/2/08

Location: Sulphur Spring Baptist Church

We sometimes use the phrase the family of God to refer to the church. I want us to read a passage of Scripture this morning that actually uses that phrase to describe those of us who are believers. The Apostle Peter was the first one to use the Phrase The Family of God to refer to the church.

When you think about the word “Family” what do you think of?

Are those thoughts positive or negative?

When you think about your family does it encourage you or depress you?

I’ve been thinking a lot this week about the family that I was privileged to grow up in.

Most of you know I have a twin brother but some of you may not know I have a sister that is three years older than my brother and I.

I’ll admit when we were growing up Mark and I didn’t have a lot to do with our sister. We enjoyed playing baseball, or basketball or football with the kids in the neighborhood and Teresa……..Well there’s no good way to say it she just wasn’t very good when it came to sports. I’m serious; when she was in the 5th or 6th Grade she played on the girl’s basketball team, although she didn’t get to play very much. One night the coach put her in towards the end of the game and she almost scored 2 points for the other team. My brother and I were so embarrassed that we wanted to crawl under the bleachers.

Have you ever felt like that about one of your ‘brothers or sisters’ in Christ? Let’s face it we can all be goofballs from time to time. In fact sometimes some of us don’t have the good sense that God gave to a goose. I know people that will say and do just about anything regardless of where they are or who’s around.

Now be honest, when you see or hear a ‘brother or sister in Christ” making a fool out of themselves don’t you just want to crawl under the nearest pew.

But that’s not what the Bible teaches us to do. It says that we should love and pray for one another. So instead of being embarrassed and looking for the nearest hiding place maybe we should stand there and pray for them. Pray that God will give them whatever it is that they need at that particular time.

After all, maybe they are going through a difficult time and what they are saying or doing is just their way of dealing with it.

Now I don’t want you to get the wrong idea about my sister. I told you that she’s terrible when it comes to sports, but let me tell you something else about my sister. She is very talented when it comes to music. She has a beautiful voice and has sung in the choir and praise teams at her church for several years. She is also a pretty good pianist, although my brother and I didn’t appreciate the fact that she always wanted to practice her recital piece while we were watching Gilligan’s Island. I guess you could say she got all the musical ability and my brother and I got all of the athletic ability in the family.

So the second thing I want you to remember this morning is that we have all been given special gifts and talents that God wants us to use for his glory.

1 Corinthians 12:4 says,

“There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but the same God works all of them in all men.

1CO 12:7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit,

to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues.

All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines. The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ.

For we were all baptized by n one Spirit into one body--whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free--and we were all given the one Spirit to drink.

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