Be Prepared

Yesterday at Saar Fellowship our text was Hebrews 12.1-11 and we talked about what our life of faith prepares us to do.

We said that our faith in Jesus, so well explained and exampled in chapters 1-11 prepares us for running, for endurance, and for growth in Christ. That is a big lofty goal isn’t it!

Run your race in Christ, endure life in Christ, grow in Christ. They are big lofty goals that can seem a little overwhelming.

Maybe you feel like well, I’m just little old me, how do I go about things that are so big and life-changing as that?

Friends, worry not!

Ephesians 4 tells us,

10 He who descended is the one who also ascended far above all the heavens, that he might fill all things.) 11 And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, 12 to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, 13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ, 14 so that we may no longer be children, tossed to and fro by the waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by human cunning, by craftiness in deceitful schemes. 

15 Rather, speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ, 16 from whom the whole body, joined and held together by every joint with which it is equipped, when each part is working properly, makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love.

God wants you to grow, God wants you to grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ.

God wants you to grow here, in the context of church, with others, for others, alongside others, helping others, being helped by others – makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love

So, our faith allows us to run, 

run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus

to endure, 

Consider him who endured from sinners such hostility against himself, so that you may not grow weary or fainthearted.

and to grow from Him, and to grow in Him, and to grow with Him,

we may share his holiness…yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.

Our faith allows us to run, to endure, to grow. Together.

The Knowledge of Him

Recently at Saar Fellowship I gave a message titled ‘Thinking Beyond Christmas’ wherein we looked at what happens now Christmas is over; so, Jesus was born, came, took on flesh, lived and walked among us, and what did this bring for you?

One thing we talked about was that this brought everything, drawing from 2 Peter 1.3-4.

“His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of him who called us to his own glory and excellence, by which he has granted to us his precious and very great promises, so that through them you may become partakers of the divine nature, having escaped from the corruption that is in the world because of sinful desire.”
2 Peter‬ ‭1.3-4

We read that through the Divine power of Jesus, He has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, so, in other words, Jesus has available to you everything you need to live life in the way life was intended to be lived and everything you need to live a godly life. 

We see the really important – yet so often overlooked – part right after this, that this happens and is available to us through the knowledge of Him who called us to His own glory and excellence

Right there should be our priority as we approach a new year, a great opportunity to set goals and targets, to grow in the knowledge of Him who called us to His own glory and excellence

People try so much and spend so much trying to improve their lives, yet this is pretty clear that Jesus has, in His Divine power, given us everything we need to life a wonderful abundant life, and that we grow in this life by growing in the knowledge of Him

Would you join me in this coming year of 2020 in committing to growing in the knowledge of Him?

1 Timothy 1.5-7 – Know and Grow

Yesterday the main idea was that Timothy as the newly installed church leader, and us by extension of principle, need to focus on the right things, not the wrong things.  

If you missed yesterday you can catch up here. 

Today we see why.

The aim of our charge is love that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. Certain persons, by swerving from these, have wandered away into vain discussion,desiring to be teachers of the law, without understanding either what they are saying or the things about which they make confident assertions.

These are lofty goals, aren’t they, love that issues from a pure heart, a good conscience, a sincere faithThe problem in Ephesus seems to have been that certain persons were not focusing on the fundamentals of love and faith and instead desired to be teachers of the law, without understanding. This is one of the reasons why Timothy was told to stay in Ephesus, to charge certain persons not to teach any different doctrine (v.3).

What do we take from this then? Are we all to be running around stopping people who don’t know what they are teaching? As noble as that may sound, no, we aren’t. 

I’d suggest that first and foremost we focus on those fundamentals – love and faith. Then, as we do, let us build ourselves up in the faith (Jude 1.20), and let us not be like those who wish to teach without knowing, let us know and grow in our faith, and our knowledge of the faith. Let us be confident in what we believe, sure on that which we stand, let us learn more about the faith that we possess.

As we do, as we commit to learning more about God, His Word, His ways, we will discover more of His will for our lives. We will help ourselves and others to stay away from false teaching and error, we will stay away from vain discussions. We will see the Bible as the grand narrative of God’s redemptive love that it truly is, and we will see Jesus at every turn in our lives.