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God's Kingdom

LETS WORSHIP TOGETHER

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Tuesday, March 12 2019

Contributor: Dolapo Olaoye

INTRODUCTION: In the last study, we looked at the sheer extravagance of God’s marvellous grace for our salvation. We looked at how God generously dispensed spiritual gifts to the church and how these should stir our hearts to serve Him out of gratitude and not out of a desire to earn merit. This week we look further into the various different gifts and examine how we can truly live a Christ-like life.

  1. VERSE 11-14: SPIRITUAL GIFTS - EXPLAINED

And [His gifts to the church were varied and] He Himself appointed some as apostles……………]”. (AMP)

In verse 8 it was mentioned that God gave gifts to men. Here we see the different gifts distributed to being explained and illustrated at greater lengths than what he had was previously said, that out of this variety arises unity in the church. When men are called by God, gifts are a necessity to function within offices of such calling. God does not confer on men the mere name of Apostles or Pastors, but also endows them with gifts, without which they cannot properly discharge their offices.

And he gave: The apostles did not appoint themselves, but were chosen by Christ; and, at the present day, true pastors do not rashly thrust themselves forward by their own judgment, but are raised up by the Lord.

Pastors and Teachers: Note here it didn’t say “and some pastors and some teachers” rather it says “Pastors AND teachers” signifying that for the role of a pastor to be complete he/she is also given the gift of a teacher. Paul speaks broadly of pastors and teachers as belonging to one and the same class, and that the name teacher does, apply to all pastors. We have however seen instances where people are gifted in teaching without being pastors but all pastors must be teachers!

That we may be no more children:Children” here refers to those who still hesitate in the way of the Lord. Those who have not yet determined their purpose for living, but move sometimes in one direction and sometimes in another, always doubtful, always wavering. We shouldn’t be children to avoid us been Tossed to and fro, and carried about.

  1. VERSES 15-16: EVERYONE IS EQUALLY AS IMPORTANT IN THE BODY OF CHRIST.

But speaking the truth in love [in all things—both our speech and our lives expressing His truth]” (AMP)

Speaking the truth: To emphasise the fact that we should not be children, here he now instructs us to grow up in the truth. When God’s word is true to us, all the devices and attacks of Satan will not be capable of drawing us from our course;

Each member has its own proper share, — according to the effectual working in the measure of every part.

By love the church is edified, — to the edifying of itself in love. That anyone who desires his own separate growth is mistaken. If a leg or arm should grow to an extraordinary size, or the mouth be more fully enlarged, wouldn’t the excessive enlargement of those parts make the whole body deformed? In the same way we as members of Christ are. Let no man be anything for himself, but let us all be whatever we are for the benefit of each other.

  1. VERSES 17-19: BELIVERS MUST NOT LIVE AS UNBELIEVERS LIVE.

So this I say, and solemnly affirm together with the Lord [as in His presence], that you must ………] (AMP)

Here Paul deliberately fully painted a picture of how unbelievers live. Pointing out that when we become Christians, there has to be a distinct break from the past. People should be able to see a clear difference in your life.

Vs 17: In the futility (meaninglessness) of their mind – Starts by pointing out the root of unbelievers’ problem, the mind! Everything starts from the mind (good/bad). Vs 18 then explains why their minds are so empty (Due to been darkened in their understanding (ignorant of God)) – Sometimes because their hearts are hardened due to sin. And then Vs 19 Paul shows where living this type of lifestyle leads.

  1. VERSES 20-24:  THE CHANGED LIFE

But you did not learn Christ in this way! 21 If in fact you have [really] heard Him…………………….” AMP

Truth is the idea of change sounds good and we are always up for it until it comes down to doing what’s required to get the change and then we decide . . .   “you know what? This is hard am ok as I am…….”

Paul describes the changed life:

  • Learn Christ, Hear Christ, taught in Christ and Know the truth that is in Jesus:

Note how the verse did not say you did not learn about Christ but rather you did not learn Christ! To learn Christ is to know God personally while to learn about Christ is just been aware of him. It’s emphasised here as it is possible to know about someone yet not know the person. Think about it, we all know about the president correct? But how many have actually met him or spent any time with him personally? Our changed life begins first from knowing Christ.

Paul is saying “I know that you have heard him” – These doesn’t necessarily mean each individual one of them have heard Christ directly but rather than when Paul and others preached the gospel, the people had heard it as God speaking to them. Our change life begins when God opens our ears to hear him through the gospel and not only hear but respond with obedient.

Before we didn’t know. Our understand was dark, easily moved but now we are in Him for life because of his mercy and kindness towards us. He teaches us, guides u. To be taught in him is a lifelong process! It never ends.

Salvation truth can only be gotten through Jesus. Is in him we learn the truth about who we really are, we learn our purpose on why we are here, how to love (both God and each other even how to love ourselves), we learn sin and righteousness, about heaven and hell. All the truth we need to know is in Jesus.

  • Putting off the old man:

The old man here refers to all we were before we were saved. The things we used to do, say, the way we used to act and react and the moment we get saved we should have put off the old cloths, the old manners and put on the new life in Christ. When we got saved we got loose from bondage to sin. God freed us. Of course our old life will still fight to live but we do not have to answer to it.

  • Renewed in the spirit of your mind:

Renewal is an ongoing process that God performs in us once we continue to walk with him. Our renewal happens from the spirit of our minds. This is done once we obey God, he saturates our minds with his word of truth.  Therefore, the means of renewal is His word! And we are responsible for the use of it.

  • Putting on the new man:

This has been said earlier in that we continue to put on the new man daily. In other words, we live by applying the truth of a new man no matter what we face. Speak the truth when tempted to lie.

  1. VERSES 25-28 LIVE A LIFE OF INTEGRITY.

“Therefore, rejecting all falsehood [whether lying, defrauding, telling half-truths…………………” AMP

We need to be done with falsehood, have nothing to do with it even part-time to resort to emergency solution NO! We are commanded here to put away lies. We are commanded to speak the truth to one another (living a life of integrity). We are also required to have a change in attitude (i.e.: move away from taking advantage of people/ cheating others because you believe you can easily get away with it).

Called to live a life of honesty for the welfare of Christ’s body (the church). Remember we are all members of one spiritual body. Think about it, why isn’t it easy for one to do harm to themselves because before the hand will commit to harming the body it considers the pain same we must be. We must be faithful, honest, and dependable towards one another.

  1. VERSES 29-32 DISPENSING SPIRITUAL GIFTS TO THE CHURCH.

Do not let unwholesome [foul, profane, worthless, vulgar] words ever come out of your mouth….” AMP

Here Paul talks about “grieving (to pain, to harm, to cause sorrow) the Holy Spirit” – This is done when we allow harmful word come out our mouth or when we let bitterness and anger dwell in within us. Instead we need to be kind to each other, tender-hearted, forgiving.

CONCLUSION

We have seen above the various types of gifts given by God Himself to His people for the edification of the church. We have also examined the process of a changed life and why we cannot live like the unbelievers. Why we must put away our old self and daily put on the new man. How we need to be spiritually matured so as not to be deceived by fake prophets. Instead we know who we are in Him with Him and allow only Him through the Holy Spirit continue to renew us daily.

Posted by: Isekhua Evborokhai AT 08:36 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
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