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Gifts in Commitment: The Response of Worship

Notes & Transcripts

Gifts in Commitment: The Response of Worship

1Corinthians 14:26-40                     June 22, 2003

 

Scripture Reading: Matthew 25:1-13

John 3:29  The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete.

 

Revelation 19:7  Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready.

 

Revelation 21:2  I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband.

 

Revelation 21:9  One of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues came and said to me, "Come, I will show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb."

 

Revelation 22:17  The Spirit and the bride say, "Come!" And let him who hears say, "Come!" Whoever is thirsty, let him come; and whoever wishes, let him take the free gift of the water of life.

Introduction:

1Cor. 12; Gifts in Diversity: The Body of Christ

1Cor. 13; Gifts in Perspective: The Way of Excellence

1Cor. 14:1-25; Gifts in Priority: The Pre-eminence of Prophecy

1Cor. 14:26-40; Gifts in Commitment: The Response of Worship

Big Question:

How should our spiritual gifts be used in worship?

We should allow the broad expression of our spiritual gifts in worship.

We must not allow the use of our spiritual gifts in competition.

We should give serious consideration to the spiritual gifts of others in worship.

We must not allow the use of our spiritual gifts in an uncontrolled manner.

We should allow women to use their spiritual gifts in worship only while in submission to creation order.

We should allow men to use their spiritual gifts in worship only while they are in submission to God’s appointed authority.

Above all, we must have an unreserved commitment to honoring God when using our spiritual gifts in worship – reserving nothing for ourselves.

So what should the use of our spiritual gifts in worship look like?

If you can imagine a worship service containing elements of these spiritual gifts, you might come to understand that it would take time.

Evidently, when the early church came together in worship, it involved a serious commitment beyond one’s own agenda for the day.

Note that the use of our spiritual gifts in worship is a response toward God. We must use his gifts in honor of him more than ourselves.

I.       Cycle One

          A.      Narrative (v. 26)

          B.      Implication

We should allow the broad expression of our spiritual gifts in worship.

          C.      Illustration

          D.      Application

Paul may be advocating more individual participation here than would have been natural in other worship settings of his day.

II.      Cycle Two

          A.      Narrative (vv. 27-28)

          B.      Implication

We must not allow the use of our spiritual gifts in competition.

          C.      Illustration

          D.      Application

Paul wishes here to balance spontaneity with order.

The rules necessary to keep worship edifying to everyone might vary from one culture and setting to another, but the principle of keeping it edifying to everyone in much more universal.

This is neither boredom nor bedlam.

Is the bulletin sacred? It is a plan but not a demand.

Newer believers must be given opportunity to use their gifts if they are to grow in discipleship.

III.    Cycle Three

          A.      Narrative (vv. 29-31)

          B.      Implication

We should give serious consideration to the spiritual gifts of others in worship.

          C.      Illustration

Topic:  Simplicity

Subtopic: 

Index:  3332-3333

Date:  7/1998.32

Title:  We Need More of God

   I want to simplify your lives. When others are telling you to read more, I want to tell you to read less; when others are telling you to do more, I want to tell you to do less. The world does not need more of you; it needs more of God. Your friends do not need more of you; they need more of God. And you don't need more of you; you need more of God.

   -- Eugene H. Peterson in Subversive Spirituality. Christianity Today, Vol. 42, no. 5.

See: Mk 10:15; Ro 12:2; 1 Co 14:30.

          D.      Application

IV.    Cycle Four

 

          A.      Narrative (vv.32-33a)

          B.      Implication

We must not allow the use of our spiritual gifts in an uncontrolled manner.

          C.      Illustration

          D.      Application

V.      Cycle Five

          A.      Narrative (vv. 33b-35)

          B.      Implication

We should allow women to use their spiritual gifts in worship only while in submission to creation order.

          C.      Illustration

          D.      Application

This refers to women who challenge men in open assembly. Jezebel Controlling Spirit, pp. 151-157, Prayer Portions by Sylvia Gunter.

VI.    Cycle Six

          A.      Narrative (vv. 36-38)

          B.      Implication

We should allow men to use their spiritual gifts in worship only while they are in submission to God’s appointed authority.

          C.      Illustration

          D.      Application

Saul Rebelling Spirit, pp. 158-166, Prayer Portions by Sylvia Gunter.

VII.   Cycle Seven

          A.      Narrative (vv. 39-40)

          B.      Implication

Above all, we must have an unreserved commitment to honoring God when using our spiritual gifts in worship – reserving nothing for ourselves.

          C.      Illustration

Topic:  Neglect

Subtopic:  Of Duty

Index:  1085

Date:  8/1997.15

Title: 

   Recently a bank customer in a major city withdrew $8 million in cash, securities, and investments.  He had a large family trust account, a good-sized commercial account, and a small personal checking account, which he and his spouse occasionally overdrew.  Three times he called the bank and said: "If you send me one more Insufficient Funds Notice and fine me twenty-five dollars when in fact I have over eight million dollars in your bank, I'm going to come and get it!"  Now you know what happened.

   The following week I visited the president of the bank, who had decided this would be an excellent time to begin a quality program the most interesting thing he said was this: "Our people didn't think it was a serious problem because we were treating him just like any other customer."  I pointed out that that was precisely the problem.  He wasn't like any other customer. 

   -- Thomas J. Steven , People Power, Moody, 1996, p. 9.

See: Neh 3:5, 9:35; Matt 7:26, 25:27; 1 Cor 14:40

          D.      Application

Church should be a place that exudes joy and life, but never to such a degree that outsiders are repelled or insiders alienated from each other.

Conclusion:

Big Answer:

How should our spiritual gifts be used in worship?

We should allow the broad expression of our spiritual gifts in worship.

We must not allow the use of our spiritual gifts in competition.

We should give serious consideration to the spiritual gifts of others in worship.

We must not allow the use of our spiritual gifts in an uncontrolled manner.

We should allow women to use their spiritual gifts in worship only while in submission to creation order.

We should allow men to use their spiritual gifts in worship only while they are in submission to God’s appointed authority.

Above all, we must have an unreserved commitment to honoring God when using our spiritual gifts in worship – reserving nothing for ourselves.

Timeless Truth:

“For who makes you different from anyone else? What do you have that you did not receive? And if you did receive it, why do you boast as though you did not?” (1 Corinthians 4:7 NIVUS)

Spiritual gifts have been given to us in the body of Christ to build others up and exalt God in worship. Whatever builds others up exalts God. Whatever exalts God builds others up.

Therefore we must use the spiritual gifts we have been given. But when we use them in a way that promotes ourselves instead of God and others, we invite confusion and ineffectiveness.

Let us not reserve for ourselves anything but the privilege of giving glory to God along with all his children.

Could it be that the essence of true worship, in wisdom and in truth, is the degree to which we can abandon our sinful sense of self and take glory in God alone?

But let us also not hinder the use of our spiritual gifts in worship. It would be a shame not to use the gift to honor the Giver.

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