Blurb: Last week, we talked about Jesus as our foundation. This week’s sermon shows us how to build on that, working with God as brings everything together in Christ: guarding our hearts, maintaining Christian unity, and believing when it isn’t easy.
Building Wisely: Building on the Foundation
Last week we talked about building on the only foundation the scriptures tell us we have: the Lord Jesus Christ himself!
We spoke about Jesus not only as the foundation of our faith, or our lives, but as the very center of history and the universe. To understand who we are, we have to understand first that we are part of the story of Jesus.
So if Jesus is the foundation, what just WE do? Remember, God’s bringing everything together in Christ–right now! And He’s working to bring unity–in Him–wherever He can. Let’s work with Him and not against Him.
There is a war–not just among people and nations, but in the heart and mind of every Christian. We are being assaulted, and just as if our home were being invaded, we need to learn how to defend ourselves and fight back.
The first area of combat? Our hearts. Psalm 86:11–unite my heart (more references to unity!) Also, Proverbs 4:23: Guard your heart.
We only guard things that are valuable, and things that can be assaulted. The verse says “Above all else…”! That makes it our highest priority.
Matthew 12:35 We have a choice here.
Think of your heart as you would a child or loved one that you have to take care of and protect.
You may never have paid attention to this, or your think your heart is too far gone. It’s not. It doesn’t matter where you start with your heart. just be encouraged that as we guard it, it will grow in love and grace and patience!
Part of what God is doing to bring everything together in Christ is to bring His church together in love.
Unity, or specifically, maintaining it! Ephesians 4:3 This is where the devil has a heyday, because it’s so easy to separate us.
How do we fight that? Ephesians 4:2 When we are challenged, remember Matthew 11:29-29. If Jesus is humble and gentle, we can be, too!
How important is this, really? I John 4:20-21 and Matthew 5:23-24!
Is there a person you have broken fellowship with, that you won’t or can’t talk to, that you avoid? Then do something about it. No human could guarantee that the person will be willing to reconcile, but we don’t want to be the one not trying.
Lastly, to build on the foundation of Jesus and ALL THAT HE’S DONE!
Believe! That’s our work. And it’s work sometimes. John 6:28-29.
The apostle John puts it just as simply: I John 3:23.
Well, of COURSE I believe! I believe that Jesus died for my sins, and that His sacrifice was enough. But how about…all things work together, or that you are accepted completely in Christ, or that God really has everything in control, etc.
We don’t start out believing everything that’s true. The first thing we believe is that we are actually sinner, and that Jesus is our savior. But then, some of us stop believing God after a certain point. We gather around us the beliefs that we have come to, and that make sense to us, and then we quietly stop believing.
Believing is a matter of choice! Look at Jacob, who only seemed to believe God:
Genesis 28:13-15 and 20-22. Don’t make deals with God, and He doesn’t need our favors. Do the hard work of believing–replacing old lies with fresh truth.