Summary: God is not statisfied with mediocre Christians.

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September 20, 209

Morning Worship

Text: Colossians 2:6-23

Subject: Freedom Through a Life in Christ

Title: Set Free to Be Your Best

If there is one thing that I can say that I have in my life that I received from my parents it is this one thing – that whatever you do, do it to the best of your ability. I love that philosophy of life for this reason; it never limits a person to what someone else thinks they should be. It allows them to be the best they can be according to their own talents, personality, abilities, intelligence etc… So I may not preach like Billy Graham, or pastor the largest church in Missouri, but I will do the very best that I can with the abilities that God has given me and the calling He has placed on my life. However, many will never experience their best.

Deion Sanders was an outfielder for the Atlanta Braves and cornerback for the Atlanta Falcons, is the only athlete to have hit a Major League home run and scored an NFL touchdown in the same week. Sanders grew up on the mean streets of Fort Myers, Fla., where exposure to some would-be athletes spurred him to make a success of himself. He explains: "I call them Idas. ’If I’da done this, I’d be making three million today...If I’da practiced a little harder, I’d be a superstar.’ They were as fast as me when they were kids, but instead of working for their dreams they chose drugs and a life of street corners. When I was young, I had practice; my friends who didn’t went straight to the streets and never left. That moment after school is the moment we need to grab. We don’t need any more Idas."

Mike Lupica in Esquire.

God has given you everything you need to be the best Christian that you can be. He admonishes us in His word much the same way that my parents encouraged me.

1 Corinthians 10:31, So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.

You have a heavenly Father who is asking the same thing from you. But not only is He asking, He is also empowering you.

Lord, open my eyes to see and my ears to hear what the Spirit is saying to the church.

I. FREEDOM FROM DECEPTION (6-8) This is a message to Christians. 6So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in him… The important message is that once you have become a Christian that you continue “In Him”. That one little phrase is so important because everything is either “in Him” or in the world or satan’s domain. You are either for Him or against Him. Now Paul very specifically states that there is really only one way to live “IN HIM” and that is to be, “7rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness. The word “rooted” literally means “to become stable.” “Built up in Him” could also be translated, “Being built upon Him” The only way to live “In Him” is to be stable by building a foundation on who Jesus is and not upon yourself. Then you will be, strengthened in the faith as you were taught – Do you see that? Taught! Teaching involves both a teacher and a student as well as a willingness to learn. The longer I am a Christian the more I find that I don’t know, but am willing to study and learn. Continuing “in Him” requires a teachable spirit. Ephesians 2:19-22 19Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God’s people and members of God’s household, 20built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. 21In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. 22And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit. Paul says we are to be strengthened in faith. That comes from hearing the word of God over and over again. Romans 1:16-17, 16For I am not ashamed of the gospel £of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. 17For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.” Now, if you are rooted, if you are built up in Him, if you are strengthened in your faith as you were taught, then, through the Holy Spirit that is in you, you have everything you need to avoid what verse 8 warns us of, 8See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ. The word “philosophy” means “fondness for wise things”. That is from a human perspective. Philosophy is deceptive and at the same time can be persuasive, even though it comes from human tradition rather than from Christ. Even some Christians are easily deceived because they have not become rooted in the word of God. Jesus warned in Mathew 24:24 of this very thing in the last days, 24For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect—if that were possible. Can you think of a better reason to stay “in Christ”?

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