#129 – A LIFE WORTH LIVING REVOLVES AROUND JESUS - PROGRESSION AND PERSEVERANCE (18/6/20)
If you missed Sunday's broadcast, please catch up by following the link below. (For the foreseeable future, we be running our Sunday morning services digitally. Please go to our website on Sundays at 10:30 to join in)
The larger the mass of a planet or a star, the greater its gravitational pull. Likewise, Jesus’ greatness is to influence every aspect of our lives, our church and how we relate to the community around us.
Let’s also remember He doesn’t influence only through being an inspirational character like a Martin Luther King. Jesus also influences us by coming to live within us by His Spirit.
Today we will look at two more of the eight attributes, taught in the book of Philippians, that will mark a Christian or a church that is in relationship with Jesus.
‘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.’ (1:6)
A Christian may have moments of failure, but he or she will make progress because, ‘He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.’
We are to,
‘Continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfil his good purpose.’ (Philippians 2:12-13)
We make effort to progress whilst remaining reliant on God who is the one who actually performs any real transformation.
‘It is right for me to feel this way about all of you, since I have you in my heart and, whether I am in chains or defending and confirming the gospel, all of you share in God’s grace with me.’ (1:7)
The promise of God is that if you are a Christian you will persevere in faith and will be in glory. Jesus will never let you go. They, like Paul, were going through trials but they ‘share in God’s grace’ - His power will keep them faithful.
Progression in holiness (growth in Christ-like character) and perseverance are promises; If you are in Christ this will happen! However, God gives us promises in order that we may pursue them. The promise of the ‘Promised Land’ was not an invitation to sunbath in the desert! Promises are to inspire faith-action toward those promises.
COMMUNITY GROUP STUDY – GOD'S HOLY PEOPLE IN CHRIST JESUS
It might be good to begin with notices. Please share from this week’s Church News
Particularly, talk about our upcoming online Alpha Course.
We all have to make various choices each day. What do you find it hardest to make choices about and why?
Introduction - please share in your group
This week we began a series in the book of Philippians. The bible is always relevant and I particularly want you to notice that in these trying times of lock down and racial tension, Philippians speaks into both of these contexts.
Please use the devotionals each day for fuller consideration on the themes of this book, but today I want to think about the words of Paul in Philippians 1:1,
'Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus,To all God’s holy people in Christ Jesus at Philippi, together with the overseers and deacons'
Christians are 'God's holy people in Christ Jesus'. To be holy means to be chosen and set apart for God.
Let's briefly look at the planting of this church to shed light on this idea.
Please read Acts 16:14-15
How did Lydia become a Christian and how does this help us to understand what it means to be God's 'Holy people'?
We become God's holy people because God chooses us and moves in us by the Spirit to believe in Jesus.
To be chosen and set apart by and for God means also means that we are to live entirely for Him. In Philippians 1:1, Paul describes himself and Timothy as 'Paul and Timothy, servants of Christ Jesus...'
How do we become Jesus' servant (slave) and how does or should this affect your life?
Discuss/share/pray in smaller groups:
1. What is the Holy Spirit speaking to you about (maybe from Sunday's message or your bible reading this week)?
2. What will you do in response?
3. How can we pray for you?
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