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Worthynes & Oneness

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WORTHYNESS  & ONENESS

EPHESIANS 4:1-6         GIVING IT ALL AWAY

"IN ERNEST GORDON’S TRUE ACCOUNT OF LIFE IN A WORLD WAR II JAPANESE PRISON CAMP,

"THROUGH THE VALLEY OF THE KWAI," THERE IS A STORY THAT NEVER FAILS TO MOVE ME. IT IS ABOUT A MAN WHO THROUGH GIVING IT ALL AWAY LITERALLY TRANSFORMED A WHOLE CAMP OF SOLDIERS. THE MAN’S NAME WAS ANGUS MCGILLIVRAY. ANGUS WAS A SCOTTISH PRISONER IN ONE OF THE CAMPS FILLED WITH AMERICANS, AUSTRALIANS, AND BRITONS WHO HAD HELPED BUILD THE INFAMOUS BRIDGE OVER THE RIVER KWAI. THE CAMP HAD BECOME AN UGLY SITUATION. A DOG-EAT-DOG MENTALITY HAD SET IN. ALLIES WOULD LITERALLY STEAL FROM EACH OTHER AND CHEAT EACH OTHER; MEN WOULD SLEEP ON THEIR PACKS AND YET HAVE THEM STOLEN FROM UNDER THEIR HEADS. SURVIVAL WAS EVERYTHING. THE LAW OF THE JUNGLE PREVAILED...UNTIL THE NEWS OF ANGUS MCGILLIVRAY’S DEATH SPREAD THROUGHOUT THE CAMP. RUMORS SPREAD IN THE WAKE OF HIS DEATH. NO ONE COULD BELIEVE BIG ANGUS HAD SUCCUMBED. HE WAS STRONG, ONE OF THOSE WHOM THEY HAD EXPECTED TO BE THE LAST TO DIE. ACTUALLY, IT WASN’T THE FACT OF HIS DEATH THAT SHOCKED THE MEN, BUT THE REASON HE DIED. FINALLY THEY PIECED TOGETHER THE TRUE STORY. THE ARGYLLS (SCOTTISH SOLDIERS) TOOK THEIR BUDDY SYSTEM VERY SERIOUSLY. THEIR BUDDY WAS CALLED THEIR 'MUCKER,' AND THESE ARGYLLS BELIEVED THAT IS WAS LITERALLY UP TO EACH OF THEM TO MAKE SURE THEIR 'MUCKER' SURVIVED. ANGUS’S MUCKER, THOUGH, WAS DYING, AND EVERYONE HAD GIVEN UP ON HIM; EVERYONE, OF COURSE, BUT ANGUS. HE HAD MADE UP HIS MIND THAT HIS FRIEND WOULD NOT DIE. SOMEONE HAD STOLEN HIS MUCKER’S BLANKET. SO ANGUS GAVE HIM HIS OWN, TELLING HIS MUCKER THAT HE HAD 'JUST COME ACROSS AN EXTRA ONE.' LIKEWISE, EVERY MEALTIME, ANGUS WOULD GET HIS RATIONS AND TAKE THEM TO HIS FRIEND, STAND OVER HIM AND FORCE HIM TO EAT THEM, AGAIN STATING THAT HE WAS ABLE TO GET 'EXTRA FOOD.' ANGUS WAS GOING TO DO ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING TO SEE THAT HIS BUDDY GOT WHAT HE NEEDED TO RECOVER. BUT AS ANGUS’S MUCKER BEGAN TO RECOVER, ANGUS COLLAPSED, SLUMPED OVER, AND DIED.

THE DOCTORS DISCOVERED THAT HE HAD DIED OF STARVATION COMPLICATED BY EXHAUSTION. HE HAD BEEN GIVING OF HIS OWN FOOD AND SHELTER. HE HAD GIVEN EVERYTHING HE HAD—EVEN HIS VERY LIFE. THE RAMIFICATIONS OF HIS ACTS OF LOVE AND UNSELFISHNESS HAD A STARTLING IMPACT ON THE COMPOUND.

'GREATER LOVE HAS NO MAN THAN THIS, THAT A MAN LAY DOWN HIS LIFE FOR HIS FRIENDS' (JOHN 15:12).

AS WORD CIRCULATED ABOUT THE REASON FOR ANGUS' MCGILLIVRAY’S DEATH,

THE FEEL OF THE CAMP BEGAN TO CHANGE. SUDDENLY, MEN BEGAN TO FOCUS ON THEIR MATES, THEIR FRIENDS, AND HUMANITY--

ON LIVING BEYOND SURVIVAL, ON GIVING ONESELF AWAY.

THEY BEGAN TO POOL THEIR TALENTS—ONE WAS A VIOLINMAKER, ANOTHER AN ORCHESTRA LEADER, ANOTHER A CABINETMAKER, ANOTHER A PROFESSOR. SOON THE CAMP HAD AN ORCHESTRA FULL OF HOMEMADE INSTRUMENTS

AND A CHURCH CALLED THE 'CHURCH WITHOUT WALLS' THAT WAS SO POWERFUL, SO COMPELLING, THAT EVEN THE JAPANESE GUARDS ATTENDED.

THE MEN BEGAN A UNIVERSITY, A HOSPITAL, AND A LIBRARY SYSTEM. THE PLACE WAS TRANSFORMED;

AN ALL BUT SMOTHERED LOVE REVIVED, ALL BECAUSE ONE MAN NAMED ANGUS GAVE ALL HE HAD FOR HIS FRIEND.

FOR MANY OF THOSE MEN THIS TURNAROUND MEANT SURVIVAL.

WHAT HAPPENED IS AN AWESOME ILLUSTRATION OF THE POTENTIAL UNLEASHED WHEN ONE PERSON ACTUALLY GIVES IT ALL AWAY."

I.  PAUL IS WRITING FROM THE STANDPOINT OF A PRISONER.

HE CAN NO LONGER TRAVEL TO THE CHURCHES

HE'S FOUNDED, SO NOW ALL HE CAN DO IS WRITE LETTERS.

ARE'NT YOU GLAD, HE WROTE THOSE LETTERS.

II. IN THE FIRST THREE CHAPTERS OF THE BOOK OF EPHESIANS,

PAUL HAS SHOWN THE EPHESIANS

THAT THEY'VE BEEN CALLED BY GOD,

III.  NOW HERE IN CHAPTER FOUR, PAUL BEGINS TO TELL THEM HOW CALLED PEOPLE ARE SUPPOSED TO LIVE.

WE CAN LEARN A LOT FROM WHAT PAUL IS SAYING.

EPHESIANS 4:1-6 (NIV)
4     AS A PRISONER FOR THE LORD, THEN,

I URGE YOU TO LIVE A LIFE WORTHY OF THE CALLING YOU HAVE RECEIVED.

 

2 BE COMPLETELY HUMBLE AND GENTLE;

BE PATIENT, BEARING WITH ONE ANOTHER IN LOVE.

 

3 MAKE EVERY EFFORT TO KEEP THE UNITY OF THE SPIRIT THROUGH THE BOND OF PEACE.

 

4 THERE IS ONE BODY AND ONE SPIRIT—

JUST AS YOU WERE CALLED TO ONE HOPE WHEN YOU WERE CALLED

 

5 ONE LORD, ONE FAITH, ONE BAPTISM;

6 ONE GOD AND FATHER OF ALL,

WHO IS OVER ALL    AND THROUGH ALL    AND IN ALL.

1. PAUL IS SAYING THAT CALLED PEOPLE

WALK WORTHY OF THEIR CALL.

PAUL IS SAYING THAT;

 WALKING WORTHY OF OUR CALLING DEMANDS THAT WE DEVELOP GOD PLEASING CHARACTERISTICS,

WALKING WORTHY OF OUR CALLING DEMANDS THAT WE BE IN UNITY WITH FELLOW BELIEVERS,

WALKING WORTHY OF OUR CALLING DEMANDS THAT WE IMMERSE OURSELVES

IN THE LORDSHIP, FAITH, AND BAPTISM OF CHRIST.

2. CALLED PEOPLE ARE HUMBLE AND GENTLE.

 

THERE'S A STORY ABOUT DR. HARRY IRONSIDE, HE WAS

A RENOWNED PREACHER OF THE GOSPEL. 

HE BECAME CONVICTED ABOUT HIS LACK OF HUMILITY.

 

A FRIEND OF HIS, RECOMMENDED, THAT HE MARCH THROUGH THE STREETS OF CHICAGO

WEARING A SANDWICH BOARD, AND SHOUTING THE SCRIPTURE VERSES WRITTEN ON THE BOARD FOR EVERYONE TO HEAR.

 

DR. IRONSIDE AGREED TO THIS VENTURE AND AFTER HE FINISHED AND RETURNED TO HIS STUDY, HE REMOVED THE SANDWICH BOARD, AND SAID TO HIS FRIEND

"I’LL BET THERE’S NOT ANOTHER MAN IN TOWN THAT WOULD HAVE DONE THAT."

DURING THE DAYS WHEN MOHAMMED ALI WAS A GREAT BOXER,

HE WOULD GO AROUND IN HIS ARROGANCE AND SAY THAT, "HE WAS THE GREATEST."

 

HUMILITY WAS NEVER HIS STRONG SUIT.

 

ONE DAY, BACK THEN  WHEN HE WAS IN HIS PRIME,

HE WAS ON AN AIRPLANE.

 

THE PLANE WAS READY TO TAKE OFF

AND THE FLIGHT ATTENDANT HAD REPEATEDLY TOLD HIM TO PUT ON HIS SEAT BELT.

 

HE FINALLY TOLD HER, "I'M SUPERMAN AND SUPERMAN DON'T NEED NO SEATBELT."

 

THE FLIGHT ATTENDANT LOOKED HIM IN THE EYE

AND SAID "SUPERMAN DON'T NEED NO AIRPLANE EITHER, NOW BUCKLE UP."


 

IN  NUMBERS 12:3 (NIV) WE READ;
3 (MOSES WAS A VERY HUMBLE MAN, MORE HUMBLE THAN ANYONE ELSE ON THE FACE OF THE EARTH.)

 

MOSES REALIZED THAT HE,  BY HIMSELF WAS A HUGE FAILURE.

IT WAS ONLY WHEN HE DID WHAT GOD TOLD HIM TO DO THAT THINGS WORKED OUT.

THAT'S STILL TRUE FOR US TODAY.

3. CALLED PEOPLE ARE PATIENT.

THERE WAS A YOUNG MARRIED WOMAN THAT PRAYED THIS PRAYER;

LORD, I PRAY FOR WISDOM - TO UNDERSTAND MY MAN;

I PRAY FOR LOVE -                     TO FORGIVE HIM;

I PRAY FOR PATIENCE -             FOR HIS MOODS;

BECAUSE, LORD IF I PRAY FOR STRENGTH,

I’M GONNA BEAT HIM TO DEATH.        AMEN.

QUESTION:

WHY DO THEY CALL THE SICK PERSON IN THE HOSPITAL

THE PATIENT? 

OFTEN THEY'RE NOT,  YOU KNOW.

 

MAYBE  THE HOSPITAL STAFF

IS CALLING THINGS THAT ARE NOT AS THOUGH THEY ARE.

 

 

4. CALLED PEOPLE BEAR ONE ANOTHER.

A. WHAT DOES IT MEAN TO BEAR?

          TO BEAR MEANS TO CARRY,

 AS IN BEARING ONE ANOTHER'S BURDENS.

 

MAYBE THIS VERSE IS SAYING THAT WE SHOULD HELP EACH OTHER CARRY THE LOAD.

THE MORE PEOPLE HELPING CARRY THE LOAD,

THE LIGHTER IT IS FOR EACH PERSON.

 

WHEN I FIRST READ THIS VERSE I THOUGHT IT MEANT THAT WE WERE SUPPOSED TO PUT UP WITH EACH OTHER'S ....  IDIOSYNCRASIES

 

5. CALLED PEOPLE MAKE EVERY EFFORT TO KEEP

THE UNITY OF THE SPIRIT, AND THE BOND OF PEACE.

BEING OF ONE MIND AND ONE PURPOSE CAN GET A LOT DONE.

ESPECIALLY WHEN WE ARE ALL BEING LED BY THE HOLY SPIRIT.

REMEMBER NEHEMIAH, THE KINGS CUP BEARER.

(THERE'S THAT WORD AGAIN.  CUP 'BEARER'.)

NEHEMIAH 4:6 (NIV)
6 SO WE REBUILT THE WALL TILL ALL OF IT REACHED HALF ITS HEIGHT, FOR THE PEOPLE WORKED WITH ALL THEIR HEART.

 

NEHEMIAH 6:15 (NIV)
15 SO THE WALL WAS COMPLETED ON THE TWENTY-FIFTH OF ELUL, IN FIFTY-TWO DAYS.

 

6. ONENESS

JUST WHAT IS ONENESS ANYWAY?

ONENESS AND UNITY ARE VERY CLOSE.

ONENESS IN METAL IS CALLED A METAL ALLOY  BRASS IS A MIXTURE OF COPPER AND ZINC.

THE ATMOSPHERE IS A MIXTURE OF OXYGEN NOTROGEN AND A WHOLE LOT OF OTHER GASES

 

DEFINITIONS of ONENESS:

1. THERE HE IS,     HE'S THE ONE.

 

2. SOMETHING THAT'S OF THE SAME KIND. 

HE'S ONE OF THOSE.

3. THEY'RE OF ONE MIND.  THEY'RE WORKING TOGETHER TOWARD THE SAME GOAL.

4. AND THEN THERE'S SPIRITUAL ONENESS.

JESUS WAS TALKING ABOUT SPIRITUAL ONENESS IN

JOHN 17: WHEN HE WAS PRAYING FOR HIS DISCIPLES,

AND FOR US TOO.

JOHN 17:11 (NIV)
11 I WILL REMAIN IN THE WORLD NO LONGER, BUT THEY ARE STILL IN THE WORLD, AND I AM COMING TO YOU. HOLY FATHER, PROTECT THEM BY THE POWER OF YOUR NAME—THE NAME YOU GAVE ME—SO THAT THEY MAY BE ONE AS WE ARE ONE.

 

JOHN 17:13-23 (NIV)

13 “I AM COMING TO YOU NOW, BUT I SAY THESE THINGS WHILE I AM STILL IN THE WORLD, SO THAT THEY MAY HAVE THE FULL MEASURE OF MY JOY WITHIN THEM. 14 I HAVE GIVEN THEM YOUR WORD AND THE WORLD HAS HATED THEM,

 

FOR THEY ARE NOT OF THE WORLD ANY MORE THAN I AM OF THE WORLD. 15 MY PRAYER IS NOT THAT YOU TAKE THEM OUT OF THE WORLD BUT THAT YOU PROTECT THEM FROM THE EVIL ONE. 16 THEY ARE NOT OF THE WORLD, EVEN AS I AM NOT OF IT.

 

17 SANCTIFYB THEM BY THE TRUTH; YOUR WORD IS TRUTH.

18 AS YOU SENT ME INTO THE WORLD, I HAVE SENT THEM INTO THE WORLD. 19 FOR THEM I SANCTIFY MYSELF, THAT THEY TOO MAY BE TRULY SANCTIFIED.

JESUS PRAYS FOR ALL BELIEVERS

20 “MY PRAYER IS NOT FOR THEM ALONE. I PRAY ALSO FOR THOSE WHO WILL BELIEVE IN ME THROUGH THEIR MESSAGE,

 

21 THAT ALL OF THEM MAY BE ONE, FATHER, JUST AS YOU ARE IN ME AND I AM IN YOU. MAY THEY ALSO BE IN US

 

SO THAT THE WORLD MAY BELIEVE THAT YOU HAVE SENT ME. 22 I HAVE GIVEN THEM THE GLORY THAT YOU GAVE ME,

 

THAT THEY MAY BE ONE AS WE ARE ONE:

23 I IN THEM AND YOU IN ME.

 

MAY THEY BE BROUGHT TO COMPLETE UNITY

TO LET THE WORLD KNOW THAT YOU SENT ME

AND HAVE LOVED THEM EVEN AS YOU HAVE LOVED ME.

WOW!!!   WHAT A PASSAGE OF SCRIPTURE.

BEING SPIRITUALLY ONE WITH GOD SHOULD BE THE HIGHEST GOAL OF EVERY CHRISTIAN IN THE WORLD.

WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO ATTAIN THIS LEVEL OF ONENESS?

1. BE SAVED.

2. BE SANCTIFIED.

3. GET CLOSE TO HIM EVERY DAY. 

4. MAKE A SPECIAL EFFORT TO GET INTO HIS MIND

AS YOU PRAY,

AS YOU READ THE BIBLE,

AS YOU FACE EVERY SITUATION THAT COMES TO YOU, THROUGHOUT THE DAY.

TOGETHER WE CAN ROCK THE WORLD.

WE AREN'T IN THIS ALONE.

WE'VE GOT EACH OTHER TO HELP US.

WE'VE GOT GOD TO HELP US.

WE HAVE EVERYTHING WE NEED TO MAKE SOME MAJOR CHANGES.

WE MAY HAVE TO GO ALL THE WAY AND GIVE OUR LIFE FOR OTHERS LIKE ANGUS DID.

WE MAY HAVE TO GO TO PRISON LIKE PAUL DID.

BUT AS LONG AS WE'RE NOT IN PRISON, WE CAN GO OUT AND SHARE THE GOOD NEWS TO PEOPLE WHO NEED TO HEAR IT.

AS LONG AS WE ARE STILL ALIVE WE NEED TO BE DOING SOMETHING FOR THE KINGDOM.

WE'VE GOT TO BEAT DOWN THE WALLS THAT SATAN HAS ERECTED AROUND THE LOST IN OUR COMMUNITY.

WE'VE GOT TO BE LIKE PAUL WHO SAID THAT

HE WAS ALL THINGS TO ALL MEN

SO THAT BY ALL MEANS         HE MIGHT SAVE SOME.

MAYBE WE CAN'T GET TEN PEOPLE SAVED.

MAYBE WE CAN'T GET FIVE PEOPLE SAVED.

BUT WE SHOULD AT THE LEAST, FIND SOMEONE, SOMEWHERE TO SHARE THE GOSPEL WITH.

EVERYONE OF US REALLY SHOULD GO FIND AT LEAST ONE PERSON TO WITNESS TO.

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