For The Glory of God

“But I do not consider my life of any account as dear to myself, so that I may finish my course and the ministry which I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify solemnly of the gospel of the grace of God.” (Acts 20:24)

As Christians we have been given the privilege and responsibility to preach to every ear that will hear the Good News of God’s free gift of salvation. It is the foremost command of the Law that we love the Lord God and that we love our neighbor as they are His creation as we. “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” (Luke 10:27) We are then responsible for the spiritual welfare of every soul that God places into our path. It is not only speaking His truth but living in His truth. We are citizens of His Kingdom and if citizens of His Kingdom then we should live as a reflection of Him. If in our hidden private life we turn away from God and His way then everyone around us will suffer for the deeds we do. In the eternal day of God we are not only here in this world but are viewed in the presence of His Kingdom that we now are bound for. “And raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus.” (Ephesians 2:6)

All will be effected by our slackness in our walk of faith. If we suffer to allow sinful behavior to come into our life then all the members of the body of Christ shall suffer also. We are the Children of God. “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” (John 1:12-13) As God’s Children we are members of the world’s largest family. We know from are earthly family experience that if one misbehaves, if one is ill, if one is suffering then the whole family suffers with them. “And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it.” (1 Corinthians 12:26)

We must put off the old self and not live in our physical selfishness. Train ourselves not to wander into mental carelessness and moral insensitivity. We must walk by the Spirit that we can depend of the Spirit of God and not ourselves and become spiritually weak. “But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.” (Galatians 5:16) All in our family will suffer if we do not live in the name we have called upon, our Lord Jesus Christ. How I and you ask are we able to live to such a high standard as that of our Lord. “Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” (Matthew 5:48) How then can we accomplish this in our lives? By surrendering to the will that God has for our life. Therefore becoming the person that He created us to be. Our sufficiency is not within ourselves our sufficiency is from God. “Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is from God.” (2 Corinthians 3:5)

Before our Lord ascended to heaven to be with the Father at His right hand He promised that the Holy Spirit would indwell us and give us power to do the good work that He has given us to do. As it is the Spirit of Christ that lives within us we are to be a witnesses for Him to all the earth that His light shall shine through us. “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.” (Acts 1:8)

How many are willing with all their heart and with all their soul, and with all their strength, and with all their mind to surrender to His will? Are we willing to spend all our nervous, mental, moral, and spiritual energy in the service of our Lord and Savior to be His witness to the world? Have we set ourselves aside to enter into the ministry of reconciling our neighbor unto God through Jesus Christ? “Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.” (2 Corinthians 5:18-19)

We are not left here in this world simply to be saved and sanctified. We were created by Him to allow Him to live through us to produce the good fruit for His Kingdom. “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.” (Ephesians 2:10) Our eternal purpose in this age is to make disciples for the Lord Jesus Christ. It is more than thankfulness that God has saved us but a desire to see others find the salvation of God as we have. The worship of God does not end with the benediction on Sunday morning but is a moment by moment experience throughout our life. To represent Jesus spiritually to those who do not know Him is our reasonable spiritual worship of Him. “Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.” (Romans 12:1)

If we walk in His truth others who are watching will ask how they can find the same peace that we have, how they can find the same joy, and why our lives are filled with eternal hope. We must be prepared always on the ready to give an account for our hope in the Lord. We must always be on guard to give defense of His truth in our lives and theirs. And we must do so with a proper attitude, the attitude of Jesus. “But sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence.” (1 Peter 3:15)

As a Christian our lives are lived for the glory of God the Father. We may not see but we must know that if Jesus is living though us, then the world is watching. Whether we are in the valleys of trial or on the mountain top of victory, whether we are sharing the love of God with a neighbor in need of salvation or in the throes of persecution, and whether we are carrying our cross following Jesus or hanging on the cross we have borne, it is for His praise.

As Christian Children of God we are not our own but the sons of our Heavenly Father the Lord God Almighty. We do not live for our self or die for our self. It is all for the Lord who lives through us and it is for Him who gives us eternal life in His kingdom. “For not one of us lives for himself, and not one dies for himself; for if we live, we live for the Lord, or if we die, we die for the Lord; therefore whether we live or die, we are the Lord’s.” (Romans 14:7) Whatever we do great or small, important of menial it is His work and has eternal value that is everlasting. Let us then do it for His glory/ “Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.” (1 Corinthians 10:31)

Thomas N Kirkpatrick

First Baptist Church of Durant February 15, 2017

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