Christ has no hands but our hands to do His work today

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Christ has no hands but our hands to do His work today

He has no feet but our feet to lead men in the way

He has no tongue but our tongue to tell men how He died

He has no help but our help to bring them to His side.

 

We are the only Bible the careless world will read,

We are the sinner’s gospel; we are the scoffer’s creed;

We are the Lord’s last message, given in word and deed;

What if the type is crooked? What if the print is blurred?

 

What if our hands are busy with other work than His?

What if our feet are walking where sin’s allurement is?

What if our tongue is speaking of things His lips would spurn?

How can we hope to help Him or welcome His return?

—Annie Johnston Flint

[1]

 

 

During the last war, a church in Strasbourg was destroyed. Nothing remained except a heap of rubble and broken glass, or so the people thought till they began clearing away the masonry. Then they found a statue of Christ still standing erect. In spite of all the bombing it was unharmed except that both hands were missing. Eventually rebuilding of the church began.

One day a sculptor saw the figure of Christ, and offered to carve new hands. The church officials met to consider the sculptor’s friendly gesture—and decided not to accept the offer. Why? Because the members of that church said: “Our broken statue touches the spirits of men, but that He has no hands to minister to the needy or feed the hungry or enrich the poor—except our hands. He inspires. We perform.”

[2]

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

God Wants You To Know by Steve Smith

Ephesians 2:10-2:10

INTRODUCTION
Have you ever wondered,
- how do I know the will of God for my life?
- Who do I marry? Direction of career?
- Buy that house? Date that person?
- ETC! How about you? Been There?

NEXT 4 Weeks: “DISCOVERING & EXPERIENCING GOD’S WILL”

Ephesians 2:10 (NIV)
10 For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

I. WE ARE GOD’S MASTERPIECE
The first part of the verse says “we are God’s Workmanship”.
The meaning for the word used gives us our English word “Masterpiece” –

Relationship between ARTIST – “envisioned” MASTERPIECE:

1. The Artist - He first envisions a finished product.
Jeremiah 1:5 (GW)
5 “Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you. Before you were born, I set you apart for my holy purpose…”
2 Corinthians 5:17 (NIV)
17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!
APPL: He had a picture in mind for everyone – a Perfect Masterpiece with a “holy purpose”. You are unlike anything else in the world!

An Artist Needs Certain Tools and Surroundings:
- the right canvas, right paint, types of brushes.

CONSIDER GOD’S TOOLS! What does He use to fashion us into the Masterpiece He has envisioned?

2. The “Masterpiece” also has a Responsibility
We are a PROCESS in the WORKING.

Colossians 3:10 “…put on the NEW SELF, which is BEING RENEWED in KNOWLEDGE and in the IMAGE of its Creator”

As believers of Christ, we no longer belong to ourselves – He wants to begin His work to make us into the Masterpiece He Envisioned.

a. “BEING RENEWED”
- God is Re-Working us!
- PROCESS requires AVAILABILITY on our part!
- If we are NOT available, God CAN’T WORK.

b. “Being Renewed” in “KNOWLEDGE and IMAGE of GOD”
- just like a member of the Family of God.
- reshaped to be like His Son.

The Result: A complete - MASTERPIECE!

Now consider these questions:
- Am I helping God make me to be the Masterpiece He desires?
- Am I hurting God in making me to be the Masterpiece He intended?

And how does this apply to the CHURCH?

II. CREATED FOR WORKS
Ephesians 2:10 (NIV)
10 For we are God’s workmanship, “created in Christ Jesus to do good works”, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

- Our tendency is to make “Good Works” a requirement of each other.
- BUT the Good Works are not anything that WE do
- BUT EVERYTHING THAT GOES DOES!

APPL: When an artist creates the masterpiece, it’s not the masterpiece that does the work! The MASTERPIECE RECEIVES THE WORK!

1. God Has PROVIDED The Tools – But they are His tools.
I offer to you that what gets us in so much trouble is THE WRONG PERSON IS DOING THE WORK!

- Hebrews 13:21 (NIV)
(the great Shepherd of the Sheep) 21 equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever.”
- Philippians 1:6 (NIV)
6 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.
- Philippians 2:13 (NIV)
13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his good purpose.
APPLICATION:
He doesn’t want to be Your Information Box, - He wants to be INVOLVED IN YOUR LIFE so He CAN WORK THROUGH YOU! Get it?

III. PREPARED IN ADVANCE
Ephesians 2:10 (NIV)
10 For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Q: WHY WOULD HE NOT WANT YOU TO KNOW HIS WILL?

Why Might We Not Know the will of God?
- Deuteronomy 5:33 (NIV)
33 Walk in all the way that the LORD your God has commanded you, so that you may live and prosper and prolong your days in the land that you will possess.
- Ephesians 4:1 (NIV)
1 As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to live a life worthy of the calling you have received.
- 1 John 2:6 (NIV)
6 Whoever claims to live in him must walk as Jesus did.
Example 1: Not Involved
Church attendance occasional, (mainly Sunday morning)
What tools does God have to work with?

Example 2: Sin
One area of sin you have received conviction of but you fight and hold on to it.
What tools does God have?

Example 3: Assumed – To Make Decision
Good commitment – God has the tools!
Never asked – own wisdom. (stubbornness)
What tools does God have?

Example 3: Fear – To Make Decision
Good commitment – God has the tools!
Asked but never did anything – just waited (door knock)
What tools does God have?
IV. SUMMARY

1. Realize your Significance – Know & Trust your importance.
2. Make sure You Are Available for Creation!
- An artist needs the right tools and surrounding. We must be available
- God is not your Information Box – He wants Involvement.
- It’s shouldn’t be you doing the work.
3. Step in Faith
Always examine your walk.
Make adjustments when necessary
Knock on the doors of faith to go where God desires.
Consider Paul’s journey:
Acts 16:7 (NIV)
7 When they came to the border of Mysia, they tried to enter Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus would not allow them to.

Paul was stopped by God’s Spirit. They didn’t pout, whine, quit knocking or go home, they simply tried another door! Don’t be afraid to Step Out!

4. If there is no fear, or desperation – you don’t need God!
So many times, we fail to understand God’s will because we are only willing to do what we can do on our own. What do you need God for?


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[1]Paul Lee Tan, Encyclopedia of 7700 Illustrations : A Treasury of Illustrations, Anecdotes, Facts and Quotations for Pastors, Teachers and Christian Workers (Garland TX: Bible Communications, 1996, c1979).

[2]Paul Lee Tan, Encyclopedia of 7700 Illustrations : A Treasury of Illustrations, Anecdotes, Facts and Quotations for Pastors, Teachers and Christian Workers (Garland TX: Bible Communications, 1996, c1979).

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