Faithlife
Faithlife

CE Week 9

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Secular:

  • Have you ever had to make a tough choice?
  • In history we have seen good choices and bad choices…
  • In WWII… the Americans choice to sit out of the war… likely costing thousands of lives… until they faced Pearl Harbour
  • Peirre Elliot Trudeau choosing to invoke martial law during the FLQ crisis in Quebec
  • The failure of modern governments to seize leadership… like on the same-sex marriage issue… instead turning the process over to the courts.
  • Life is full of tough decisions…

Biblical:

John 6:51 "I am the living bread that came down out of heaven; if anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever; and the bread also which I will give for the life of the world is My flesh." 52 Then the Jews began to argue with one another, saying, "How can this man give us His flesh to eat?" 53 So Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves. 54 "He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day. 55 "For My flesh is true food, and My blood is true drink. 56 "He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him. 57 "As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who eats Me, he also will live because of Me. 58 "This is the bread which came down out of heaven; not as the fathers ate and died; he who eats this bread will live forever." 59 These things He said in the synagogue as He taught in Capernaum. 60 Therefore many of His disciples, when they heard this said, "This is a difficult statement; who can listen to it?" 61 But Jesus, conscious that His disciples grumbled at this, said to them, "Does this cause you to stumble? 62 "What then if you see the Son of Man ascending to where He was before? 63 "It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life. 64 "But there are some of you who do not believe." For Jesus knew from the beginning who they were who did not believe, and who it was that would betray Him. 65 And He was saying, "For this reason I have said to you, that no one can come to Me unless it has been granted him from the Father." 66 As a result of this many of His disciples withdrew and were not walking with Him anymore. 67 So Jesus said to the twelve, "You do not want to go away also, do you?" 68 Simon Peter answered Him, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. 69 "We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God."

Personal:

  • How about a choice that was unpopular with your friends, family… or with your spouse.
  • Maybe it was a move for a job…
  • Maybe it was based on financial prudence…
  • Maybe it was having to negotiate the shark filled waters of whose parents we spend Christmas at…
  • Maybe it is the choice to follow Jesus Christ… in our home, in our workplace and in our community…

Bridge:

  • What is right is rarely ever easy… the more you have to stand firm for something the more likely you are to face challenges…
  • We teach our kids about wise choices… how to fend off peer-pressure… but how well are we doing?
  • Jesus has called us… and we have some choices to make… So Jesus said to the them, "You do not want to go away also, do you?"
  • What is our answer?

Follow Me…

Matthew 19:21 Jesus said to him, "If you wish to be complete, go and sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me."

  • Give up your prize possessions…
  • Give up living for yourself…
  • Be generous to those in need…
  • To follow… was to give up your agenda… your wealth / possessions…
  •  Matthew 16:24 Then Jesus said to His disciples, "If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me.
  • Denying self… is a tough choice…
    • God first…
  • “taking up your cross”… is a tough choice…
    • Willing to suffer… to bear the burden of your calling…
  • Are you ready for the tough calling…
    • When Jesus called… as He calls you now… do you cry out hear I am Lord…
    • "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God."

Go Preach…

Mark 16:15 And He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.”

  • We choose Christ… or we don’t choose Christ… makes sense right?
  • Herod in this week’s video tried to ride the fence… Not choose for John nor choose against John…
  • But choices without action… riding the fence is no choice… and we have been asked to follow…
  • Do we choose God… and serve as Christ’s ambassadors
  • Or do we choose ourselves and the world and serve Satan?
  • Jesus message to those He calls is to make the choice… follow me… preach my word…
  • Not every Sunday from the pulpit… everyday… in your life…
  • When Jesus called He said… preach my gospel… share me with a lost world… as He calls you now… do you cry out hear I am Lord…
    • "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God."

Be Holy…

1 Peter 1:13 Therefore, prepare your minds for action, keep sober in spirit, fix your hope completely on the grace to be brought to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ. 14 As obedient children, do not be conformed to the former lusts which were yours in your ignorance, 15 but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; 16 because it is written, "YOU SHALL BE HOLY, FOR I AM HOLY."

  • I would be remiss to mention that Peter’s words start… “prepare your minds for action”. This choice… eternal life… in the Father… through our Saviour… is a choice for action…
  • But it isn’t about our action for our benefit…
  • We follow to be obedient to God
  • We preach to increase the Kingdom
  • We are to be holy… to grow into the likeness of our Saviour… to bring glory to God.
  • Being holy is living set-apart… we talked last week about living a life that demands an answer…
  • What is different about you… we shouldn’t have to initiate that conversation… Hi I am Doug and I am Christian….
  • We need to be defeating sin… Christ gives us the victory… do we look like it… is it who we are at the core… could we live life inside out?
  • What is stopping us?
  • Is it Internet pornography…
  • Is it pot…
  • Is it an addiction to alcohol…
  • Is it lust…
  • Is it an extramarital relationship…
  • Is it premarital sex…
  • Is it lying…
  • Is it materialism…
  • We have choices to make…
  • The choice to follow is tough…
  • The choice to abandon Christ is tougher…
    • "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God."

Conclusion:

We have choices to make…

To Follow Christ

To Preach Christ

To Like Christ (to be holy).

  • Intimacy… are you praying… are you alone with God… are you in prayer…
  • Character… are you living life inside out… do you live a life of integrity…
  • Ministry… what are you doing?
  • Community… if we disappeared tomorrow… would you miss us…

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