Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: Using the metaphor of a body, I believe that for this church to function properly as Christ would have it function, as well as each us individually, there are certain body parts that ALL of us must possess.



INTRODUCTION: Throughout the New Testament the church is likened to a physical body made up of many members each functioning in a different capacity but all being part of the same unity and working together for the proper functioning and benefit of the entire body. As such the Apostle Paul states that every part of the body is necessary and no one member can say that they do not need the other members. Using the metaphor of a body, I believe that for this church to function properly as Christ would have it function, as well as each us individually, there are certain body parts that ALL of us must possess. Let us consider what the Body of Christ needs…

I. We need Eyes open to See

A. Ezekiel 12:2 "Son of man, you dwell in the midst of a rebellious house, which have eyes to see, and see not; they have ears to hear, and hear not: for they are a rebellious house."

B. See the Need

C. Proverbs 29:18 "Where there is no vision, the people perish: but he that keeps the law, happy is he."

D. John 4:35 "Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? Behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest."

E. See the Source of our Power

F. 2 Kings 6:15-17 "And when the servant of the man of God was risen early, and gone forth, behold, an host compassed the city both with horses and chariots. And his servant said unto him, Alas, my master! How shall we do? [16] And he answered, Fear not: for they that be with us are more than they that be with them. [17] And Elisha prayed, and said, LORD, I pray thee; open his eyes that he may see. And the LORD opened the eyes of the young man; and he saw: and, behold, the mountain was full of horses and chariots of fire round about Elisha."

G. Vision looks inward and becomes a duty. Vision looks outward and becomes aspiration. Vision looks upward and becomes faith. – Stephen Samuel Wise (1874-1949)

H. The Christians who have turned the world upside down have been men and women with a vision in their hearts and the Bible in their hands. – T. B. Maston

I. The importance of vision is seen in that a vision is the dominant factor that governs your life. It determines all the choices you are making. It’s what’s left after all the layers are peeled away like an onion. Clinging like glue to the inside of your rib cage. It’s what your mind naturally gravitates toward when it is not legitimately concentrating on something else. It’s ... what determines your friendships and your relationships that you are cultivating. It’s what your prayers are about--what you dream about and are giving money toward. – Phil Grant, Leadership, Vol. 15, no. 3.

II. We need Minds set to Work

A. Nehemiah 4:6 "So built we the wall; and all the wall was joined together unto the half thereof: for the people had a mind to work."

B. We need to have the mind of Christ – that is the mind of a servant.

C. Philippians 2:5-7 "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: But made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men:"

D. One thing I know: The only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve. – Albert Schweitzer, missionary doctor, 1875-1965. Men of Integrity, Vol. 1, no. 2

E. Philippians 1:27 "Only let your conversation be as it becomes the gospel of Christ: that whether I come and see you, or else be absent, I may hear of your affairs, that ye stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel;"

F. Matthew 9:37-38 "Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but the laborers are few; Pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will send forth laborers into his harvest."

G. At a church in Santa Fe, New Mexico is a hand-lettered sign that hangs over the only door into the sanctuary: SERVANT’S ENTRANCE. There isn’t any way in or out of that church except through the service door.

III. We need Hearts willing to Give

A. A conductor on the Santa Fe was converted and united with the church. After he had been faithful in his religious duties for some weeks, he was asked one Sunday morning to help take the offering. He started down the aisle, and all went well until he came to a richly dressed woman. She allowed the plate to go past her, whereupon the conductor unconsciously reached up for the bell rope to stop the train, and said, "Madam, if you don’t pay, you’ll have to get off." – James S. Hewett, Illustrations Unlimited (Wheaton: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc, 1988)

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