Summary: A sermon for those who want their life to count for Christ.
“Three Keys to a Significant Life”
1 John 2:15 Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
16 For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
17 And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever.
I. Key #1 – Find the Will of God
a. The pursuit of God
Matthew 7:7 Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you:
Psalms 27:4 One thing have I desired of the LORD, that will I seek…
Acts 17:27 That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us:
Jeremiah 29:13 And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.
b. The petitions to God – Jesus found the will of God in prayer and so will we! In John chapter 18 we find an example of prayer that paved the way to finding God’s will. Beginning at verse one Jesus prayed for himself, for his disciples and then for all those who would come after him. At the end of this season of prayer Jesus is committed to doing the will of God, composed as he meets his betrayer and compassionate in his behavior towards others. Gideon put out his fleece, Jacob wrestled all night with an angel and Daniel prayed in the lion’s den!
ILL - There was a pastor who had a parrot. All the parrot would say was, “Let’s pray, let’s pray.” The pastor tried to teach him to say other things but to no avail. He learned that one of his deacons had a parrot. Thet parrot would only say, “Let’s kiss. Let’s kiss.” So the pastor decided to invite the deacon and his parrot over to his house. When the deacon arrived they put the parrots into the same cage to see what would happen. The deacon’s parrot said, “Let’s kiss, let’s kiss.” The pastor’s parrot said, “Thank you, Lord. My prayers have been answered.”
There’s great power in prayer.
ILL - A little boy wanted $100 very badly. He prayed for weeks, but nothing happened. So, he decided to write a letter to God requesting $100.
When the postal authorities received the letter to "God, USA", they decided to send it to the President. The President was so amused that he instructed his secretary to send the little boy a $5 bill. The President thought this would appear to be a lot of money to a little boy.
The little boy was delighted with the $5 bill, and sat down to write a thank-you note to God. The postal authorities forwarded this letter on to the President, too.
"Dear God, Thank you very much for sending the money. However, I noticed that for some reason you sent it through Washington, D.C., and those guys deducted $95 in taxes!"
ILL - The great preacher and pastor of Chicago’s famous Moody Church, A.C. Dixon declared, "When we rely upon organization, we get what organization can do; when we rely upon education, we get what education can do; when we rely upon eloquence, we get what eloquence can do, and so on. Nor am I disposed to undervalue any of these things in their proper place, but when we rely upon prayer, we get what God can do."
c. The precepts of God’s Word
GOD’S WILL IS GOD’S WORD
ILL - Jimmy is a professional fisherman. He makes his living fishing on the BASS (Bass Angler Sportsman Society) circuit. He is also a devout Christian and belongs to the FBC Keys, Oklahoma.
This year, BASS made a ruling that to be eligible for the fisherman of the year award ($100,000), you had to wear the patch and decal of a prominent sponsor--Busch Beer!
Jimmy Houston refused to do it, thereby forfeiting his chance at the $100,000. A fellow Christian fisherman on the circuit asked him, "Jimmy, have you prayed about that?" Jimmy replied, "I don’t have to pray about it. There is no decision for me to make. God has already made the decision in His Word when He said not to do anything that would damage our testimony as Christians."
He didn’t use these words, but Jimmy was saying to this fisherman, "This is not a part of God’s specific will, it’s a part of God’s general will. God’s Word clearly tells me what God’s will would be in this matter."