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Let Our Body Do The Talking

Notes & Transcripts

Text:

Ephesians 4:14–16 (NIV84)

14 Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful scheming. 15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ. 16 From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

Introduction:

Over the past few months I have been preaching about the church. The text for most of these sermons has came directly out of Ephesians. Ephesians is a letter that Paul wrote that painted a picture of the amazing body Christ created. Paul calls it the same thing Jesus did, “the church.”

We still use the word church, but our use of the word is not for a functioning body. Our use of the word is for a brick and mortar construct (something that the early church NEVER would have associated with the word) and in reference to a gathering of people that huddle together a various times of the week, in various places. These buildings and these gatherings are NOT the church. The church is only the church when it is functioning as a living, moving, breathing entity that has its life support completely in Jesus.

1. Unity takes EFFORT (v 3).

Ephesians 4:1-16 is the portion of the letter where Paul places a precise focus on unity. He instructs that we are to,

SCREEN

“Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.” (4:3). He continues in V 4-6 and we love those verses:

2. We have been CALLED into ONE (vv. 4-6)

SCREEN

Ephesians 4:4–6 (NIV84)

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.

They are all the things we have been taught to believe. These are things that we have continually reminded ourselves about as tenants of our belief.

However, Paul throws a real monkey wrench to anyone who insist that “belief” is the only requirement of Christianity. He uses a word that we frequently keep all to ourselves, for our purposes. It’s an ugly three letter word. We use it all the time. The word is BUT.

3. The BIG BUT! (v. 7)

Ephesians 4:7 (NIV84)

7 But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it.

Paul offers explanation about those gifts and offers insight into those gifts (APEST). He states that the (APEST) are to prepare God’s people for works of service (v. 12). Then Paul tell us three “WHY’s.”

Simply put

• When we exercise our gifts Jesus uses them to mature us and keep us from being mislead (v. 14).

• When we exercise our gifts Jesus uses them to “grow” us into Him (v. 15)

• When we exercise our gifts Jesus uses them to unite God’s people as the church (v. 16)

Today let’s look at another at “HOW”

The Big Idea (Sermon in sentence): Speaking the truth in love, is speaking not only with our mouths, but through our actions (exercising our spiritual gifts).

Let our body (GACC) do the talking.

Ephesians 4:15 (NIV84)

15 Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ.

Far too long have we made a mistake with this passage. This passage is not about a tone of voice. It’s not about correcting someone vocally. It is about love.

4. LOVE IS a LANGUAGE (v. 15).

Examples of application from Scripture:Paul then gives us a description so we can recognize love. (1 Corinthians 13)

*I recommend a female voice reading this passage in the tone and cadence of a thought. Not as a proclamation, but as a heart felt pondering.

1 Corinthians 12:31–13:13 (The Message)

And yet some of you keep competing for so-called “important” parts.

But now I want to lay out a far better way for you.

THE WAY OF LOVE

1 13 If I speak with human eloquence and angelic ecstasy but don’t love, I’m nothing but the creaking of a rusty gate.

2 If I speak God’s Word with power, revealing all his mysteries and making everything plain as day, and if I have faith that says to a mountain, “Jump,” and it jumps, but I don’t love, I’m nothing.

3–7 If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don’t love, I’ve gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love.

Love never gives up.

Love cares more for others than for self.

Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.

Love doesn’t strut,

Doesn’t have a swelled head,

Doesn’t force itself on others,

Isn’t always “me first,”

Doesn’t fly off the handle,

Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others,

Doesn’t revel when others grovel,

Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth,

Puts up with anything,

Trusts God always,

Always looks for the best,

Never looks back,

But keeps going to the end.

8–10 Love never dies. Inspired speech will be over some day; praying in tongues will end; understanding will reach its limit. We know only a portion of the truth, and what we say about God is always incomplete. But when the Complete arrives, our incompletes will be canceled.

11 When I was an infant at my mother’s breast, I gurgled and cooed like any infant. When I grew up, I left those infant ways for good.

12 We don’t yet see things clearly. We’re squinting in a fog, peering through a mist. But it won’t be long before the weather clears and the sun shines bright! We’ll see it all then, see it all as clearly as God sees us, knowing him directly just as he knows us!

13 But for right now, until that completeness, we have three things to do to lead us toward that consummation: Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly. And the best of the three is love.

This a passage that has been read at almost every wedding that any of us have ever attended. As fitting as the passage is there, I’m afraid we have not paid attention to it because we have been intoxicated by feelings instead of reading it in context.

Paul is talking about spiritual gifts! He states that everything he knows, can do or will do is useless unless love is the expression it comes forth in.

This passage is about what “speaking the truth IN LOVE” is!

Do you love Jesus?

Speak with the language of love by using spiritual gift.

Do you love this “church…” YOUR church? Or do you love HIS church? Jesus church?

Speak of that love and express that love through the language of your spiritual gift.

Do you desire God to grow this church?

Express that desire through the language of your spiritual gift. That is what God has instructed us to do.

Don’t know what your gift is…let’s find out together!

This morning for the Invocation Phil read

Psalm 67. SCREEN

God is gracious to us. He has been gracious and the reason has been for the entire world to see Him in His Body. The Church.

Nothing God has ever given or done was for our benefit ONLY. He has done it to glorify Himself and He takes glory when His church is speaking of Him and glorifying Him through the language of love.

Closing:

i. I like how the New Century Version puts it, (Ephesians 4:16) “The whole body depends on Christ, and all the parts of the body are joined and held together. Each part does its own work to make the whole body grow and be strong with love.” NCV

1. Unity takes EFFORT (v 3).

2. We have been CALLED into ONE (vv. 4-6)

3. The BIG BUT! (v. 7)

4. LOVE IS a LANGUAGE (v. 15).

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