Abiding in Christ Part 1

The last 4 messages:

  • Brokenness – being broken of our sin (7/1)
  • Breaking the critical spirit (7/8)
  • Broken because of love (7/15)
  • Focusing on what we have with God (7/29)

An old saying, changed

  • Everyone’s heard the old saying, “You don’t know what you have until it’s gone!” Spiritually speaking I feel that phrase can be said differently in many believers’ lives, “We don’t know what we have right now with a God that says He will never leave us or forsake us!”
  • The truth is that there are extraordinary things to look forward to in the millennial kingdom and then an eternity in heaven after that, but we shouldn’t overlook what is available to us right now!

What we have right now

Actually, the list can be very long of what we have been given now by God, but focusing only on two things:

  1. We have been given access to God’s POWER
  2. We have been given access to God’s PEACE

But…it seems to me that many believers don’t fully utilize what we have been given!  It seems that many live defeated and depressed lives! How do we change that?

 

I am not talking about a “prosperity gospel” theology – I am talking about the benefits from

Abiding in Christ

!

 

John 15:1-17 – Abiding in Christ means to:

  1. Keep ourselves clean through the Word (3)
  2. Obey the commands of God (10)
    1. Jesus gave us the example of obedience when He obeyed the Father in all things
  3. Talk with God through prayer (7)
  4. To allow Christ’s life to flow in and through us

The Benefits of Abiding with Christ

  1. Bear much fruit for God (2-5)
  2. Answered prayers (7)
    1. As we want what God wants, He gives us those things (Psalm 37:4-5)
  3. A greater sense of God’s love (9-10)
  4. Joy (11)

A great truth: Without Christ’s work in our life (as well as the work of the Father and Holy Spirit) we can do nothing!

  • It is God working in us that we have access to His power and peace!

The meaning of verses 2 and 6

  • In light of…
    • John 5:24 – believing in God leads to no condemnation from God (i.e. John 3:15-18)
    • John 6:27-29 – the works of God = believe in Jesus!
    • John 10:22-30 – eternal life by believing
    • John 14:15-18 – Holy Spirit abides with you forever
    • Romans 8:39 – no separation from God
    • Hebrews 13:5 – God never leaves or forsakes us
    • Ephesians 2:4 – GOD’S GRACE/MERCY
    • John 15:16-17 – IT WAS JESUS WHO CHOSE/ORDAINED YOU in the first place
  • …I don’t believe that this means an unfruitful believer will go to hell but I do believe that a believer who lives in sin will be chastened by God (Hebrews 12) so that he will repent and have his fellowship with God restored. If he continues to live in sin, I believe that God will/can destroy the believers body but that his spirit will be saved in the day of judgment (1 Corinthians 5:5)!  THIS IS A FEARFUL THING NOT TO BE TAKEN LIGHTLY!!
  • God purges us so that we bear more fruit (15:1). He cleanses us with the Word (15:2).  I believed that we are “shelved by God” when we are not abiding in Christ (following God’s Word) but through our repentance He restores us.

END WITH FOR TODAY…

  • YOU ARE ORDAINED TO BRING FORTH FRUIT!
  • YOU NEED THE POWER OF GOD TO HELP YOU BRING FORTH FRUIT!
  • GOD GIVES YOU ACCESS TO THIS POWER AT SALVATION – Ephesians 1:15-23