Summary: Three timely examples of how Christian misuse and even abuse their freedoms in Christ
“The Problem With Liberty”
· Introduction: Ruth is a 44 year old stay at home mother of five from Pennsylvania when asked why don’t you attend church she replied:
“ I’m active in Scouts with my daughters, and my husband and I both coach teams for our kids. I feel if we were involved in a Church that would mean other commitments. And I can’t say that the activities we have now model anything other than moral, uplifting behavior. So I don’t see how church could add much to our lives.”
Transition: When a relationship with all mighty God and service to the institution he established is compared to athletic teams or boy scouts something is wrong at the core of ones value system!
· Today, the United States of America celebrates our 228-year of independence from Great Britain. I thank God for the freedoms this country has given me, but I must confess, these same liberties are destroying us, from within.
· Consider the following:
o In 1920, there was 1 divorce for every 7 marriages. That is 14%.
In 1940, there was 1 divorce for every 6 marriages. That is 17%.
In 1960, there was 1 divorce for every 4 marriages. That is 25%.
In 1972, there was 1 divorce for every 3 marriages. That is 33%.
In 1977, there was 1 divorce for every 2 marriages. That is 50%
o 57% of adults do NOT attend church, at all
61% of men do not attend
53% of women do not attend
I. Using it to Satisfy The Flesh, 13a
A. Christians have been called to be free
1. We are free through the TRUTH, Jn 8:32 “And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”
2. We are free through the SON, Jn. 8:36 “If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.”
3. We are free through the
B. Christians have not been called to be loose
1. I Pet. 2:16 “As free, and not using your liberty for a cloak of maliciousness (evil/wickedness), but as the servants of God.”
2. Gal. 5:1 “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.”
II. Using it to Ignore Christian Service, 13b-14
A. We serve through the energy of love
1. Love will give you the strength to GO
2. Love will give you the strength to DO
3. Love will give you the strength to SAY
4. Love will give you the strength to STAY
B. We serve through the expression of God, ‘love thy neighbor…’
1. This is the second half of the greatest commandment of all, Mk. 12:30-31 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.
2. This is the certain way to fulfill the requirement of the law, vs. 14
III. Using it to Destroy Your Neighbor, 15
A. By taking more than we give
1. This is Robbery
a. Whether it be emotional
b. Whether it be spiritual
c. Whether it be personal
2. This kind of robbery …
a. Will not be seen on the evening news
b. Will never be presented for prosecution by the D.A.
c. Will never cause the Police chief to issue an All Points Bulletin
d. Will not cause the offender to be prosecuted by the courts
3. This kind of robbery will…
a. Break up friendships
b. Cause churches to stop growing
c. Stifle Christian maturity
d. Cause the world to mock the commitment of believers
B. By hurting rather than helping
1. The abuse of liberty leads to the abuse of others, ‘bite’, ‘devour’
2. The abuse of liberty leads to the destruction of all, ‘be consumed’