Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: Grace loves us even though we are undeserving of love.

As most of you know, my fiancée Melissa is an art major at Gordon College. Part of being an art major, each art student has to complete a senior thesis which is a major final project that takes three months to complete. When they are finished, the outcome is beautiful art work and a gallery display that is up for about a week and a half.

Melissa had her display and senior thesis two weeks ago and tonight I have pictures of some of her pieces to share with you guys. This is a paining that she called “Fat Baby” and is a picture of her cousin Mitchell. This painting was called “Job’s Job” and is a painting of the pastor that she worked with in Mexico whose name was Pastor Job. This next painting, my personal favorite, is a painting of me when we were on our way home from Mexico two years ago.

I was very proud of Melissa and her paintings! She did such a good job and her gallery display went very well as she got a lot of compliments and encouragement. As Melissa and I have been together for almost 4 years, her art has always been something that has blown me away and touched my heart. There are not a lot of people who have the gift of art and the fact that I got one of them, who happens to be really cute too, is awesome.

As she has drawn pictures of me before, like this one here from her senior thesis, and as she has drawn pictures for me to say “I love you,” I have often tried to return the favor by drawing pictures for her. As most of you know though, I can’t draw to save my life and most often my drawings come out looking like this….Melissa has been very moved by my drawings like this and usually shows her appreciation by laughing and rolling around for a good ten minutes.

In my growing interest in art over the last few years, I have realized that art is a great illustration to explain how humans often relate to God. As you read the bible it doesn’t take long to begin to see the standards that God sets for his disciples. We, in essence, are given the formula for being perfect. God wants us to be like a masterpiece and a beautiful piece of artwork, like Melissa can do, but yet, all too often we find ourselves putting out sub par work like I drew. As Paul writes in the book of Romans, we all fall short of God and being the kind of people that God wants us to be.

In Ephesians 2:1-3, Paul writes to the church in Ephesus and compares our sub par performance to something deeper than bad artwork. He compares us to being dead!!

“Once you were dead, doomed forever because of your many sins. You used to live just like the rest of the world, full of sin, obeying Satan, the mighty prince of the power of the air. He is the spirit at work in the hearts of those who refuse to obey God. All of us used to live that way, following the passions and desires of our evil nature. We were born with an evil nature, and we were under God’s anger just like everyone else.”

Paul uses harsh words to describe how we fall short of God. He says that we are dead because of our sin. Paul says we follow the ways of the world rather than following God. We give in to Satan, just like Adam and Eve, as he desires for us to disobey God. Then we gratify ourselves and our desires and thoughts that are not pleasing to God. We so often put all of those things, the world and culture, Satan, and our desires, above God that Paul says God was a right to be very angry at us.

One of the commentaries I looked at compared this description that Paul writes to being a zombie! A zombie is a dead person who is still up and walking around. They have no brain activity and they just kind of moan and walk around like a stiff penguin. Not only is a zombie a dead body that is walking around, but it is also a body that is decaying and falling apart. It is a disgusting site and smells awful. This is the condition that we are in before God’s eyes. We all fall so short of God that we are like walking corpses. God wants us to be alive and free but yet we disobey God blatantly or we just don’t even stop to think about God in our lives. No matter how hard we try we all disobey God all the time!

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