Alive in Christ
By Pete Lasutschinkow on May 17, 2015
Alive in Christ
By Pete Lasutschinkow on May 17, 2015
This is a rush transcript.
[00:00:00] Good morning, everybody. How are you doing? You know, I woke up this morning to text messages about a 4:00 o'clock this morning and therefore from my good friend, Pastor Bobby, say he wasn't feeling very well. And four o'clock, four forty five, I said, if we're 50, I said, you going to be able to do this today. Pastor Bobby. He said, no problem. I've got this. I'm feeling better. So I thought foolishly, I'm off the hook today. I'm going to have an easy day.
[00:00:32] I teach class in Aliso Viejo. I was just in England, just got back a couple of days ago from this England trip. And I'm thinking I'm going to show some pictures in class and chill and it's going to just be an easy day for me.
[00:00:46] Then my phone rang at seven fifteen. And this time it says Pastor Bobby's name on it. And I picked it up and I looked at it. And you know what? It wasn't Pastor Bobby. It was his wife. And she said, Are you coming to Huntington Beach today? I said, you know, I guess I am.
[00:01:02] And so here I am. And I'm excited to be here to teach the word of God to you. Yeah. I was just in just in England for about 13 days and went on an England Scotland Reformation trip. And so we did is we had about forty one people with us and I led them on a trip. We flew into London on May the 3rd or May the 4th. I can't remember which one of those days. And Scott, you you're your photographer over here was with the Brad Smith's parents came along and we went to we were in London for three days. We went to Oxford, Stratford-Upon-Avon, Bedford, the home of John Bunyan, if you know who John Bunyan is, a pilgrim's progress. And then from there, we went to Cambridge, from Cambridge to York and then York to Edinburgh to review the life of the great reformer John Knox. And then by the time that was all over, we we came home. We were in in Edinburgh and we were at a church that's called St Giles Church. It's an old church. Been around for probably six, seven hundred years. Doesn't look like this. Doesn't look like the church that I go to. And it's just stunning. It's amazing. It's a beautiful church. And John Knox, the great reformer, preached there and he preached against Mary, Queen of Scots and a whole bunch of the Roman Catholics and saw a number of his buddies burned at the stake for their reformation of faith.
[00:02:33] And I had the opportunity to preach outside of his church. And I was standing up outside on a pillar and had our whole group down below. And I kind of review the whole trip in my mind a little bit in one of the things that was really aching for during that whole time wasn't better food or anything else or the accents to go away. But what I was looking for more than anything was hearing from God's word. I told her people were thirsting to hear from the word of God because there's so much liturgy and so much pomp and circumstance. It's kind of hard to wade through everything that that's going on there. One of the things that was a big problem during the English Reformation was Roman Catholicism and Roman Catholicism. Even today presents a whole different view of Christianity and who Christ is. And and one of the things that people how to get around was this idea of implicit faith versus expressed faith. And that's probably the easiest way to understand Roman Catholicism, because in Roman Catholicism, you have really three authorities. You have the pope, you have the history and the councils and you have the Bible. So all three of those wrapped in have equal authority in the lives of believers in the Roman Catholic Church. When guys like Martin Luther and Zwingli and Calvin came around, they were the cry of the Reformation. And they said Soulas script sure that the Bible would solely be the authority of all Christians and there would be no more work space righteousness. And this idea of implicit faith meant simply that that people by belonging to a church would be saved. They would be right with God. So if you joined a church and in the church, then basically hands out salvific grace. It doesn't come through a proposition of scripture and that's expressed faith. What you have you have expressed faith. You've read the Bible. You've read it. You've seen it. You said, wow. The Bible teaches that I'm sinful. And apart from Christ, I can't save myself. My choice is to put my trust in myself or to put my trust in Jesus Christ if I put my trust in Jesus. I repent of my sin. And I placed my trust in Christ. If that happens, then I get eternity. I get the gift of the Holy Spirit as a guarantee and a deposit of the faith that I have in Christ. And I live this life for everything I've got in Christ. And then beyond that, I know that when I die or when Christ comes back, my eternity is solved. It's done. It's finished. I will spend eternity with Jesus Christ to my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, in the Roman and Roman Catholicism. It's absolutely the opposite. That's what I just described you as an expressed faith. You have a way of expressing, based on propositional truth, what you believe in Roman Catholicism or any workspace righteousness. It's all implicit. It's just like, well, OK, if I do the sacraments or if I do this or if I do that and if I do enough these things, then then then perhaps. Going to be OK with God and this whole idea of the Reformation solar script tour of the Bible alone, and then it was Soulive FITA Solar FITA is faith alone in the object of the faith was soulless Christmas. Christoph's Christ was the object of the faith of the people. And then beyond that, what would save them was solar grazioso, which was Grace. Grace alone will save you. Works won't save you. Nothing else will save you. But it will only be the grace that God has given you exclusively justification by faith, alone in Christ alone. And you would subscribe. All the glory alone to Jesus Christ. Not to yourself. Not to your pastor. Not to other people. But the glory goes to God alone. And that's kind of Roman Catholicism in just two or three seconds here in. And then we were there to study. The Church of England in the Church of England is kind of like Roman Catholic lite. It has a little bit of the reformation in it and a little bit of Roman Catholicism in it. And after a while, you know, just reading the liturgies over and over again, you know, we're left with do we place our trust in liturgy and councils and the wisdom of man or do we trust in the word of God? And I'm here to tell you this morning that you should be trusting solely sold a script scriptura in the word of God. And this morning, our message talks about being alive in Christ. And if you're going to be alive in Christ, that means a lot of different things for you as you become alive in Christ, because there are a lot of people that become Christians because they live in the United States of America or because their parents are Christian, but they're not really alive in Christ. You see, if you're living Christ, you have God's spirit inside of you. You're not only going to be alive for Christ, you're going to want to live for Christ. And that's what I want to talk to you this morning about.
[00:07:49] And there's no better author in letters that are written than the apostle Paul to talk about this. If you have your Bibles, would you open them to a letter he wrote to the Colombian church, the book of Colossians? And you have to remember, as you open up to the book of Colossians, if you don't have a Bible, you'll find one in the seat in front of you.
[00:08:12] The Book of Colossians is an interesting book. It's actually not a book. It's a letter. And it's a letter that these people that lived in a place called Call US say CLSA is in Western. It's in western Turkey. Matter of fact, a little a little advertisement next summer. I'm doing a footsteps of paltry member. I just got back from England and Scotland. If you want to go with me to Greece, western Turkey and then finish in Rome, June 18th through July 1st. And we'll have all the details for you if you're interested in coming along with us. But one of the churches of Paul preached to and and actually planted but never visited. He had a couple of other buddies he had sent to this place called Call. I say not very far away from Ephesus. And these other guys go there and start this church. And when they get there, they find a lot of people that are primarily Gentiles, not a lot of Jewish people. And they start sharing the gospel with the people and call say and they and people in call say start getting saved. And and now they have a church. You have a group of people that are formed together. Paul never visits there personally. He didn't personally start the church, but his disciples did. And these people are really super excited about what God's doing in their lives, kind of like this church. You know, it's new and growing and exciting. Now, Paul at the time isn't in a really good spot. Paul is in the inner city of Rome. And what's he doing in the city of Rome? He is waiting to die. He is in jail. And he is waiting to die in the city of Rome. Every morning, if you can picture this, Paul would wake up with the idea of is today my last day of life on this earth? And he really did not know. And in the meantime, this church and call us say that was starting off really good. All a sudden hit the hit the rocks. They had some big problems. Other soothsayers came in. Other wisdom. Teachers come into this city and as they come into this city, they teach a completely different gospel.
[00:10:20] And they start looking at people going, Jesus Christ, really God, really?
[00:10:27] I don't believe it. And you shouldn't believe it either. And they start directing him back to the Greek gods and Gnosticism and a whole variety of other areas of wisdom. Stoics and Epicureans came in and said, you know, that's crazy stuff. Resurrection. Are you. Your mind and what happened were the people and callers say their knees started to knock. They really got to a place of going. Is this all really true or not? And so what they do is they write a letter to their friend Paul. They had to write him a letter to get a letter back, and they write him a letter in prison and they ask him the same questions that they're confronted with.
[00:11:07] Is Jesus really God? Did Jesus really resurrected? He really diffie or are we wasting our time?
[00:11:15] And Paul writes this great letter back to him. He takes the first chapter of Colossians of first. The first part of it, it just tells them how much he's praying for them, any. He's caught up in prayer holding this congregation of people he has never met, never talked to, but he knows about it. But he says this, you know, I'm praying for you day and night, praying for you, praying that you'll grow and be rooted in Christ Jesus. And by the time he gets to the second chapter of what he has to write to him, he gets into it and starts talking, too, about the really important things about the DEEDI of Christ and the way that they're living. Looking Colossians, chapter number two. Verse number six. In verse number six, Paul says this.
[00:11:59] He says, therefore, as you receive Christ, Jesus, the Lord. So walk in him. How rooted, built up in him, established in the faith, just as you were taught. Abounding in Thanksgiving. He continues on in verse eight. See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy. Empty the sea according to.
[00:12:23] Human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of this world and not according to Christ. Verse number nine.
[00:12:33] Four in him, the whole fullness of DEEDI dwells bodily. You see, he's dealing with resurrection. He's dealing with who Jesus really is. Jesus is really the anointed one. Jesus is really God.
[00:12:45] Because if Jesus isn't God in First Corinthians, Chapter 15. Paul tell you in writing that if Jesus isn't God and if Jesus isn't resurrected, we are wasting our time this morning.
[00:12:59] We should be doing other things. We should be at Disneyland. We should be fishing. We should be at a soccer game.
[00:13:04] We were totally wasting our time. And not only we'd be wasting our time if he is not really God and he is not really resurrected any did not defeat death, then not only that were false teachers.
[00:13:17] He says we should be the most peaty people on the planet. He gets down to it of First Corinthians fifteen. And here he's saying in verse number nine four in the fullness of DEEDI dwells bodily and you have been filled in him who is the head of all rule and authority in him.
[00:13:35] Also, you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands by putting off the body of the flesh, by the circumcision of Christ, having been buried with him in baptism, which you were all so raised with him through faith in the powerful working of God who raised him from the dead.
[00:13:54] No resurrection, no Christianity.
[00:13:57] Paul's putting it on the line right here in you who were dead in your trespasses and uncertain incision of your flesh. God made a life together with him, having forgiven us of all trust passes by canceling the record of death that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside nailing it to the cross. He died for you and I, and he disarmed the rulers and the authorities and put them to open shame by triumphing over them in him.
[00:14:29] What a great passage of scripture for a group of people that were really struggling about. Wow. Is Jesus really God? Did he. Was he resurrected? Are we wasting our time? Paul says no way.
[00:14:44] And not only does he say no way. He says a couple of other things. He's challenging him and saying, well, how is it that you're going to choose to live? How is it you're going to. Are you going to be alive in Christ? Are you going to look at this passage and go, wow, this is amazing. And remember, I told you that this is a letter. This is a letter. Take it as a letter.
[00:15:03] It's like I got an email while I was in London from a person that was really struggling in their lives in is really long email. And what I did was I sent them an email back and I thought it was scripture, but I wanted to point them to scripture. I wanted to help them. It's exactly what every single letter in the New Testament that we have for you that Paul does. They're practical letters. They're just not some some some some just crazy theology that you're trying to get your head around. They're practical letters written by a man who loved people and love God. And he sent letters to the church that he loved and cared. And those letters have been recognized as scripture. And that is a great thing about the book of Colossians. It's not just a bunch of heady theology. It's practical, everyday living. Look with me in verse number six and verse number seven of our text today all says. Therefore, as you receive Christ, Jesus, the Lord. So walk in. Hymn of the Greek word for walk is a really cool word. It is Perry Petare. Oh, Harry Patos. A really fun word if you overtake Greek. And it's fun for a lot of different ways, but it has kind of a double entendre, you know, a Christian euphemism, a Christian word that we use all the time as I go. How's your walk? How's your walk? How's your walk? But what we mean inside of it and what Paul means inside of it is like, how are you living? What does your life look like later on in Cloches Chapter three? He does this whole thing about take off and put on. And one of the things he tells Christians to put on if it sells and put on kindness and meekness and all these different really great attributes, because he believes that if you as a Christian are wearing those kinds of attributes, that the people that you meet, the people that you will see that are unsafe, will recognize that there's something different about the way that you live. There's something different about who you are. And they'll ask you about it and go, wow, you know, I don't know what you're doing, but what you're doing is different than what the culture is doing. And if you haven't noticed, the cultures doing a lot of different things today than biblical Christianity, if you haven't noticed, you should have noticed by now. Our world, our Western culture is on a freefall. It is on a freefall. Morally, it's unprecedented to see the things that are happening right now in our world.
[00:17:30] And it's no different. I was just in London, England. I was just in Edinburgh, Scotland, and nobody goes to church. Nobody they'd have these beautiful, wonderful churches. I've been to every wonderful church in Wittenberg, Germany, the church of Martin Luther. I've been to New your Swingline church in Geneva. I have been to John Calvin's church and preached in every one of those churches.
[00:17:53] And nobody goes to those churches because they don't believe in the Bible and they don't believe in Christ. And it is a dark time. Friends in the Western culture for biblical Christianity and God, I want to encourage you always provides a remnant. Always does. Remember, Alija, when he got bummed out after the big deal that he did in Mount Carmel against the prophets of all? Remember that and calls fire down and. Any defeats the profits of ball? And what is his reaction after that? He's bummed out. He he needs therapy. He's depressed. And eventually he gets replaced by a life. Shar replaces Alija. And analyzes big deal was like, oh, I'm all alone.
[00:18:38] The world's crumbling. Romey. All this stuff is horrible. It's bad. Prison in the United States. And same sex marriage woes. Those are horrible. And I'm just by myself at it.
[00:18:47] And do you remember how many people that God told them that he had that had not bowed their need to all of this?
[00:18:54] It was in the thousands.
[00:18:55] You see, God will always have a remnant. No matter how bad it is. Don't if you watch the news, whether it's FOX News or CNN or any of the news is is really bent to do one thing for you. It's to get you hooked on that station. So you believe that they have the most current information on whatever's happening around the world. That's their job. And the more dramatic they can make it and the worse they can make it. They want to get you hooked on the idea of like a better check in with Fox News to figure out what this problem is here at the Supreme Court or this problem in the world today or what's happening in Baltimore or what's happened in Ferguson. That's their job. Their job is to get you hooked and addicted on them. I want to get you hooked in, addicted on what God's word has to say about problems in Baltimore or problems in anywhere in this world or the moral freefall that's happening, because God has a lot to say about those things. Going back to our text again. Therefore, as you receive Christ, Jesus, the Lord walk in him, rooted in built up in him, established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in Thanksgiving.
[00:20:03] Well, Paul's getting to these people who say, listen up. Do you remember the gospel? I preached you. Did you remember it? If you do it, if you've received Christ, Jesus the Lord, then could you walk in him, please? Could you walk in him? Could you do the things he's called you to do and stop with the foolishness of these soothsayers and Epicureans and all these other people that are teaching you something completely different in in you're going to do it because you're rooted in your built up in him, established in faith.
[00:20:34] You see, if you're a Christian here today, if you've repented and placed your trust in the Lord Jesus Christ, nobody can talk you out of it. Nobody can change their position that you have with Christ because Christ has done that work in you. And that's what he's telling these people. If you're in Christ, man. Let's get to it. You were rooted in him. Built up in him. If you're taking notes today, if you want to write it down, write it down this way. Commit to walk. Commit to walk in Christ. And here's the key. With passion. With passion. What's happening in this world today is we have Christians that are zombies, people that are saved, that are just kind of walking through life just like this. And and they're depressed and wounds. It's the Lord do today. The Lord's no work in today. I can't do anything or they're caught up in it or you're caught up in the Orange County lifestyle where you're waking up in the morning and you're looking at your spouse going, good morning, good morning. I'll be over here. You're going to be over here. I'm gonna get this meeting over here and I'm eating. Get the kids over here and I'll see you again later tonight. And then you reassemble sometime around six or six thirty and there's no dinner made. You're like, we're going to have Del Toro. We're going to go out here. We're gonna do this. And then you look at your spouse or whatever situation you're gone. It's eight o'clock. And the kids are you? I'm tired, man.
[00:21:56] I'm just some smoked.
[00:21:58] I still have go to sleep and try this over again. That's the Orange County lifestyle. Yeah. It's not about relationships. It's not about getting to know other people. It's about making it day to day, having enough money to make it, having enough in your tank to make it every day. It's not you. We don't know our neighbors. We don't know our neighbors. We just pull our car and hit the garage door controller. And the reason we don't know our neighbors is because we're so busy, we're so busy with all kinds of other things and we're just barely making it. And we don't have good relationships with our husbands or wives. We don't have good relationships with our kids. That's been a lot of time with high school students and asked high school students my favorite question, what is your mom or dad do for a living? Do you know what they do for a living? Yeah, I tell you, most high school students today blank on that question. I think my dad works somewhere in L.A.. OK, what does that mean? Where in L.A. does he work? I don't know. Do you know what he does? Well, I don't know. Works for some company called Huse or something like that. Do you know what he does now? Do you do you know your grandfather? Did you know where your great grandfather is? You know where you came from? Do you know why you're here?
[00:23:10] No, because most people are living like zombies. They're just like trying to make it through. And God doesn't want us to live that way. God wants us to live with passion, with zeal, with people.
[00:23:24] People that have a reason for waking up in the morning. People to have a reason for going to work and living for Christ at work or in their neighborhood or wherever they are, wants us to live with passions where the scripture says, you know what you need to receive. Walk in him. Rudy built up in him, established in faith. If we're live in that way, the way we live change is we repent of the business of our world. Parents out there get to know your kids because most of the parents I know are doing business for their kids. And this is what business sounds like. You get your homework done. Did you get your work done to get your chores done? Tell me about this. Tell me about it. It's just one big accountability exercise and it's business time with your kids. Do you need to do that? Of course you need to do that. But I'm looking at parents going. Are you investing in your kids? Are you taking your children out one on one and taking them through a program? Like while partners will be a good example and making sure they're rooted in their faith. Are you spending time with them, getting to know them, to find out what the real problems are for them when they are in school with their friends? And. And, you know, it's sadly a lot of our parents aren't because we're not spending time. We're not invested in our families. And we need to be rooted in Christ and we need to root our kids in Christ.
[00:24:53] And in the great book of judges, chapter number two in Judge's Chapter two, there's this big discussion about parents that didn't teach their children about who Yahweh was, the God of the Bible.
[00:25:07] And the result of it was that those kids that were not taught were not invested by their parents. Those kids turned away from the Lord. They didn't know who the Lord was. And the result of that was that you always hand God's hand was against those kids when they became adults and everything they did, everything they did.
[00:25:28] You see, everyone is going to place their trust in one thing or another. Either you're going to place your trust in Jesus Christ or you're going to place your trust in yourself. And I'm here to tell you this morning you make a rotten God.
[00:25:42] Take a look at the Matthew Chapter four for just a quick second. I want to show you an example of zealous believers, people that really live for Christ. Look at verse number 18, Widney Matthew, chapter four, verse number 18. Here in the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus Christ runs across two guys that that had a different life plan than the plan that Jesus had for them. Are you with me in Matthew Chapter four? Do you find it? Verse 18. Got that. Look at this. While walking by the Sea of Galilee on the north side of the Sea of Galilee.
[00:26:21] The he the antecedent to he is Jesus Jesus sees two brothers, Simon, who is called Peter in.
[00:26:28] Andrew, his brother. They're casting a net into the sea because they were fishermen and Jesus encounters these fishermen.
[00:26:36] Let's not let's not go further than this idea. These guys live in a small town I've been to. This town is Capernaum, and it's a little dinky town, maybe maybe a couple hundred people.
[00:26:49] And the smartest kids did not become fishermen. OK. They went to something called the midrash and they became the rabbis of the town.
[00:26:59] They were the smart kids, the kids that weren't so smart. They would get an education perhaps up to fourth or fifth grade. And they keep giving USA Tease S.A. Ts and then they weed out the smartest kids. And they went into religious studies and everybody else went back home to work with their dad.
[00:27:15] And if their dad was a fisherman like Peter and his brother Andrew, then Peter and Andrew become fishermen. That's what they became, you know, up the street from Capernaum, where Peter and John and James and Andrew all grew up up the street was was a city called Best Sean and Best Sean was like a city like Los Angeles. In comparison. It had a university. It had everything had the smartest people perhaps in the entire Middle East were in that community and that community was 25 miles away. And Jesus Christ did not go to that community to pick disciples. The impact one, the siple from Best Shot. Did not go into one university there, did not go into any universities or any places of learning defined DISCIPLE'S. And I think that when you read this text, you're going to find out that Peter, Andrew, John and James become Major League players for Jesus Christ. And you can I can argue that Peter and John are perhaps the most important disciples of Christ ever had.
[00:28:16] And those guys are look what they're doing. They're fishermen. They're not very bright guys in terms of what we think about great people at university in verse number 19.
[00:28:28] Jesus said to them, follow me and I'll make you fishers of men. And the response is, what? Immediately a meeting. Think about it.
[00:28:37] They didn't have a big discussion about it. The scripture reports that immediately these two guys left their nets and followed him.
[00:28:46] And going on from there, he runs into James and John and goes to the same thing and they do the same thing. Their response is the same everything that they were about as fishermen or we're right here in their hands. They were men, men. Those nets were in their hands or ground into them.
[00:29:04] And when Jesus called them, they did this.
[00:29:08] They drop them and the scripture says immediately. And Jesus chose those guys because those guys had something called passion and in God and still the passion in their heart. I love hearing reports about men and women in Christ that have a zeal and a passion for the Lord, for his word and for his people. Because if that's you, God will pull you out of a crowd and he will use you profoundly. I mean, profoundly in this world for the propagation of the gospel and for the edification of others.
[00:29:42] He's looking for men and women that have zealous, passionate hearts. And you need to commit to Perry Bitauto. The walk in Christ with Passion Look would be a verse number eight. And we'll pick up our second point there.
[00:29:59] Paul next says, see to it, he gives him a warning, see to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy, empty deceit. According to human tradition and according to the elemental spirits of the world. And not and repeat, not according to Jesus Christ.
[00:30:19] And I think this is really super interesting here.
[00:30:23] After telling them, look, you know, you need to be rooted in your faith. You need to grow in your faith. You need to have this zeal and this passion for it.
[00:30:32] He provides a warning right on the back end of it. And the warnings, a good warning. It's a fair warning. It's a warning that says you have a choice. Also in another matter and your choice choices, this one, either you're going to seek wisdom from God's word or you're going to seek wisdom from an alternative place. I do a lot of counseling. I do a lot of marriage counseling, I deal with people that are addicted to drugs and can't get off of them. I deal with people that are hopelessly depressed. I see probably 20 to 25 of those people every single week. And I've done that for probably 15, 20 years. So I have a good idea about how the human heart works and and how people lose hope and and and they'll seek even the smallest kernel of truth to help them through their weakest moment.
[00:31:26] And it's tough. I mean, even a crowd like this today. Everybody's coming from a different spot. Some people are like, am I my walk with the Jesus Christ has never been better, just really rooted excited. Well, that first point you had, that's me and that's where I'm going. Others of us are coming here this morning from a place of like I'm broken.
[00:31:47] I'm beyond help.
[00:31:49] I'm so broken inside my heart. I read his Jesus scripture and I see them lighting up for other people that are sitting in this room or around here, don't work for me. I'm in a bad marriage, and every marriage I see out there seems to be working, but mine doesn't seem to be working so well. My kids aren't, you know, exceedingly smart or doing well in school or, you know, whatever it is.
[00:32:13] And when we get to that place in Christ and we'll all get to that place, by the way, every one of us will have periods of just really tough challenges in our lives and face, death, face, all kinds of things will hit us. And we have a choice as to how we're gonna do it. And here Paul is warning, says, you know what? Make sure that when the storms of life calm, make sure when you have big choices to make in your life that no one takes you captive. And I love the word right. He could have said a lot of different things. But here you say take you captive, imprison you by philosophy. Is philosophy on its own really bad? No, I study philosophy all the time. I think philosophy is very interesting. He then says empty seat. Then he says human tradition. No, I told you about the Roman Catholic Church. What were the three points of authority for the Roman Catholic Church? I told you the pope. Right. And then what did I say? The next thing was, do you remember? I said it was tradition. I said it was tradition councils and history councils in history and Roman Catholicism for a moment. Have the same power and the same authority that the Bible does and Roman Catholicism. Give me an example. Priests are allowed to be married. Truth. True or false?
[00:33:32] False. They're not the the the Roman Catholic Church teaches that if you're a priest, you are to be celibate and you're to be single.
[00:33:41] Now, when I look at the Scripture, Titus, chapter one is an example. It says there the pastor is to be a husband, one wife. But to be a husband and to have children all over the scripture. It talks about the press buther us, the elder, the pastor being someone that's married. Now we've got a problem.
[00:34:01] Roman Catholicism is that authoritative and is should should I not be married?
[00:34:07] How does that work? How did the Roman Catholics even get there? Well, it's not on the Bible. So it it's not in the Bible. They had to look either through the pope or through human traditions, councils and and so forth, forth in war. Roman Catholicism is an example of how they got there is is probably about a year. Eleven hundred A.D. Roman Catholics were were involved in a lot of wars. There's a lot of people where you had a holy Roman emperor. You had the pope. You had a lot of people that were vying for power in Italy and in Europe. They needed to protect themselves. They needed Amen. It makes sense to have an army. You needed to protect yourself at that time.
[00:34:47] So if you were the pope, wouldn't it be better if you had a group of single men that were dedicated to Christ and dedicated to you, that you had no families? Because when the pope whistled and said, hey, yo, Lombards are causing a problem up in Milan, let's go fight.
[00:35:04] If you didn't have a wife or kids to look back at like this and go, I don't want to leave them, Lombards aren't that bad of group. You know, I'm a stick around. But if you don't have anybody and you don't have a wife and you don't have kids, you know, picking a sword up and going to war is OK. That's not going to be a bad thing for you. And so one of their counsels, they just came up with it and it was very practical. It made sense as to why they would do it, but it became authoritative, became a human tradition.
[00:35:32] And just like this and this text today is we can't fall prey to human traditions, no matter how hopeless we feel, no matter how how bad we feel about a certain situation, we have to find our wisdom from the scripture. I tell you, I do a lot of marriage counseling and I deal with people that want to get the verses all the time they give in my all and I want you to divorce 100 divorce and and I'll say, OK, well, what's your situation? Well, in the scripture, I'll tell people there are two places that perhaps you can get a divorce. One's Matthew 19. Nine is if your spouse is committed, unrepentant physical adultery. That is a place where the Lord has provided an exception. There is another exception. First Corinthians, Chapter seven versus 12. And following that says if you're married to an unbelieving spouse and that spouse physically deserts you, you can divorce and remarry every other exceptions.
[00:36:22] No, no bueno. You can't do it. So people come into my office and I'll say, no bueno, I can't do it. Was I Pastor Pete's rules? No. That's what the scripture teaches in easy. You're also you have a choice in life.
[00:36:35] No matter how bad it is, no matter how tough your situation is or whatever it is, your choice is always going to be simple as the you'll be choosing God's word exclusively to help you navigate through this world, or you're gonna have to come here to worldly wisdom and human tradition. That's the choice. The beginning of all wisdom is the fear of the Lord. In doing that, I want to make decisions that are biblical decisions finding. Well, with God's spirit. And I'm here to glorify God and everything I do. It can't be about me. It's gotta be about God. It's gotta be about others. Because as soon it's it's about me. If you think about it, then I'm going to fall into the trap of choosing human traditions. I'm going to choose other things and what the Bible says, because the Bible is always going to point to Christ and others. The Bible always points to Christ in others. That's what it does. It never points to you and ever says you should feel bad for yourself or you should get what you want. It never says that. And that's a tough message sometimes because sometimes it really wanted to be about me. And sometimes I really want it to be about me getting minister, too, or or me being helped in a certain way. And it just doesn't work out that way. It works out to me loving others and loving Jesus Christ. And that's got to be enough. And when it's not. That's when we can we can fall. Look with me real quickly in this idea of a choice. Also in the gospel of Matthew, if you had your thumb in Matthew. Look at Matthew. Chapter seven in Matthew, Chapter seven. We're coming to the end of a great sermon. You know, the gospel, Matthew, is is amazing. There's just one great set of sermons after another. And in Matthew, Chapter seven, we're coming to the end of the Sermon on the Mount. You remember the Sermon on the Mount and and really in verse number 24 of chapter seven of the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus is getting to the point. He's spent Chapter five. Chapter six. The most Chapter seven. Telling these people this is the way you pray and this is what you do. Blessed are those that do this. And he has a lot of instruction for people. But he gets to the bottom line. Look at the bottom line is on verse number 24, chapter seven of the Gospel of Matthew. One, then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock.
[00:38:56] The rain fell, floods came. Winds blew and beat that house, but it did not fall. And here's the reason why. Because it was founded on the rock. He's saying, you listen to all this stuff I told you to do.
[00:39:09] You heard it all, just like as you heard it.
[00:39:14] But what are you going to do? Are you going to put it in practice? Hear these words of mine and does them chooses to do them?
[00:39:24] When the storms of life come, you'll stand not because you're good, but because you're you're you're trusting in the word of God.
[00:39:31] You're trusting in Jesus Christ. Jesus Christ is a rock.
[00:39:36] Look at the look at the antithetical side of it and everyone else who hears these words will hear the words just like the other guy did. Right, and does not do them. We'll be like a foolish man who built his house on one on sand.
[00:39:49] Same storms of life will come. Same storms of life will come to those that are that are redeemed in Christ as the as the people that are not redeemed. They'll face death. They'll face sickness. They'll face financial ruin. They'll face everything that we're facing. And the difference here in the scripture says that we choose to follow Christ and only hear his words, but put them into action. We'll stand. We'll stand, and we'll not stand on our own. Two people will stand on the rock of Jesus Christ. And that is a huge difference for all of us to think through. So we're thinking about what Paul is warning us about here, saying to no one takes you captive by philosophy. Empty seat according to human tradition, according to elemental spirits, the work we need to be taken captive by Christ. And I put it this way for you.
[00:40:38] You need to recognize that you will always have choices. You'll have choices. And. And what I want you to remember is that God is a God that will provide you the opportunity to make a choice.
[00:40:50] Hear these words, put them into action. Do it.
[00:40:55] Storms, life will come. You stand underneath it. You hear these words of his. Don't put it into action and come over here and choose human traditions.
[00:41:03] Choose your feelings, your friends, your will, your family saying anything but the scripture. And when the storms of life will come. Man, you're good.
[00:41:10] You're going to get flattened. You're going to get flattened. And Paul doesn't want this church. Call a side. Get flattened. They've already had enough struggles. And so he's telling them, as you know. Don't walk like a zombie. Remember the whole I didn't commit the walk of Christ with passion. And you have a choice as to how you're going to live. You're not forced. And God will give you a choice. And the choice that you're going to take is you're going to take the choice of following him. Soulless script or following God's word. Let's look at the last part of this verse. Number nine. Four in him. The whole fulness, Didi dwells bodily. Let's stop right there. Remember what I told you at the very beginning of this today was what was a big problem in the church at Colossi. The big problem was people walked into town and said that Jesus was not God. He was not homosex. He was not in the same essence as the father. And that was a big problem in here. What Paul is going to do from versus nine through verse fifteen is he's going to tell them exactly who Christ is and what the benefit of following Christ is on top of that.
[00:42:25] So for in him, the whole fullness of Didi's walls, bodily, you've been filled in him and he's the head of all rule in authority in him.
[00:42:35] Also, you were circumcised with a circumcision made without hands. What he's talking about here, he's saying, you know, you're not Jews anymore. The Jewish people, the Old Testament, they got circumcised.
[00:42:47] They got entered into the family of God through physical circumcision. And that kind of circumcision isn't the kind of circumcision that'll save you, the kind of circumcision we'll save you as the circumcision of your hearts, where God is going to take that heart of stone that's inside of you and give you a heart of flesh. So it's not that kind of circumcision.
[00:43:08] By putting off the body of the flesh as circumcision now as in Christ and here it is, having buried with him in baptism in which you were also raised with him. And how were you raised Amen through what?
[00:43:20] Through what you're reading, it starts with.
[00:43:23] Your faith through faith in the powerful working of God who raised him from the dead. What did I say about resurrection? No resurrection, no Christianity. We shouldn't be here today.
[00:43:36] And it all hinges upon a resurrected Jesus Christ who defeated death. On your behalf? In my behalf.
[00:43:46] And you who are dead and your trespasses in the UN circumcision of your flesh. God has made a life together with him, having forgiven us all in our trans trespasses. And he did it by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside. He nailed the cross. That good news this morning. You want to have your you don't have your sin forgiven. Where do you want your son to be brought before you? I don't know about you. I seen a lot of marriage counseling appointments, and the worst part of a marriage counseling appointment is when someone says they had forgiven the other person. And then 10 minutes into our discussion about what's wrong with their marriage. Someone brings out the past that they said they had forgiven him for and said, ha. Do you remember the Fourth of July party when you did this?
[00:44:35] And the other person says, I thought you forgave me for that. Well, apparently I didn't.
[00:44:39] Nobody wants to have their sin hauled out before them and held in front of their face and say, you are a sinful, bad person. And when Jesus Christ is done for you and for for myself is he has died on a cross as a perfect sacrifice. He's died on a cross. He took every pain. He took every whipping. He took every scorn that he had. He took the death of Roman execution. He did it on your behalf. And he did it because he loves you. And what a great motive. And we think about we think about why it is that we love Christ. Here's a good reason why you should love Christ, because your sin isn't going to be held in front of you like that. It has been accounted for. It's over. It's finished. It's done with. And it's been paid for on the cross by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with all of its legal demands. This Jesus set aside nearly thrust. He'd disarm the rulers and authorities who are the rulers and the authorities during the time of the Apostle Paul. It was the Romans. They were the world power. And he said, you know, you see this war of power is these guys are choosing to kill whoever they want. They imprison whoever they want. They do whatever they want. But this Jesus has this armed the Romans, the world leaders, these disarm them.
[00:46:08] And he's put them in the open shame and he's triumph over him. You see, the Roman crucifixion could not hold down. Jesus Christ. You see, these people were one who is Jesus Christ God. Well, even the most powerful entity at the time, which was the Roman government could not contain, could not hold down, could not end the life of the Lord Jesus Christ because he triumphed over him through resurrection. That's the main point of the text that a.
[00:46:39] And now you have to ask yourself, is what Jesus Christ is, what he has done for you?
[00:46:48] Is it enough?
[00:46:51] Is it enough? You see, if you don't get the big house in Huntington Harbor.
[00:46:58] If you don't get all the great trappings of this world, if you're not financially set for life, you can go wherever you would like to go.
[00:47:09] If your health isn't really the best that it could be today.
[00:47:14] If your family's not in the best position, it could be relationally today, if we looked at a text like this and we pondered for a moment deeply our status before a holy God and found out that this holy God not only died for, you know, he died for you and promised you haven't been adopted, you into his family. If that's all he gave you, he gave you nothing else. Now, one other thing didn't give you a wife, didn't give your kids and give you a good to give you anything that hall he gave you.
[00:47:46] Would that be enough for you?
[00:47:50] Would it would it really be enough for you? Because that's what Paul is getting to the text right here, to be alive in Christ. Right. Would you be alive and Christ? We have to think through what it is, a crisis done for us. And when we think about what Christ has done for us, we have to ask that question. Is it enough for my satisfied? Or do I need more? Do I desire more? Do I want more than what's been offered and what's been given to me? Take a look in Second Corinthians, because Paul talks about this same matter in Second Corinthians. Chapter number 12, Second Corinthians, Chapter twelve. If you have your Bible still with you. And this is a big question for all of us to ask in our lives today, because actually when we look at our lives and we see the things that we spend our time upon and the work that we're doing, clearly we're gonna come up and go, you know what? Pastor Pete, it's not enough. Because I see, by the way, I live my life that I desire things that are way beyond what Christ is giving me. I have disappointments in my life, dreams that have not been not been fulfilled, and different things that I've wanted to do that didn't turn out the way that I wanted. And look, in chapter number 12, Second Corinthians, verse number nine, the same writer, Apostle Paul, is talking about this thorn that he's had in his flesh and in writers have thought long and hard about what was the thorn that was in the side of Paul's flesh, whether it was a physical malady, whether he was really in physical pain or if it was something that he really wanted, that just never came true for him.
[00:49:34] But either way, he had begged Jesus Christ to change this situation for him. Think about if anybody that you've heard about or read about scripturally would have a right to stand before God and say, no, God, this isn't really working out the way I wanted to. Could you change it? I'm going to ask you three times and I beg you to change it.
[00:49:55] And I and I told you as the apostle Paul that ask God that I think all of us would agree that, you know what Paul's done so much for the Lord has written a good part of the New Testament. He's taken beatings. He's taken all kinds of things for the good of the gospel. You know, God, probably a good idea if anybody should get what they want on this world. Now, Paul should probably get it like a verse number nine.
[00:50:20] But he said to me, the antecedent to me is Jesus.
[00:50:24] My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.
[00:50:34] No. No, no, no, no. That was the answer that God provided, Paul, this day. No. And then he pointed him back to the cross.
[00:50:50] My grace is sufficient for you.
[00:50:53] My power is made perfect and your weakness?
[00:50:58] Is Jesus Christ grace sufficient for you?
[00:51:12] We look at this text and the reason that the Colossians wrote to Paul as he pondered his life waking up every single morning wondering whether it would be his last day or not. Paul loved people, spent time with people. He was a relational love God, and he wrote to these people. He said, I don't care what all these other people have told you. I have to proclaim the gospel to you.
[00:51:41] Jesus is indeed God. Jesus indeed has resurrected and defeated death.
[00:51:50] And what I need you to do next is I need you to live with passion for him. I need you to be men and women that even if there's a remnant in this world, changes dramatically, like it looks like it's going to that with encouragement in our heart and belief, knowing that a holy God is with us no matter what. We will live with him. We live in him and we'll live through him. And as we do that, we're gonna do that with zeal and with confidence in the relationship and the promises of scripture. And when we do that, we're going to do that in our workplace. We're going to do that in our homes. We're going to do that on the soccer fields of this world.
[00:52:33] And we'll also remember we have a choice, also a choice. Either to follow the world and follow the world's teachings or to exclusively say, I believe that the Bible is a special revelation from God to us. And when I open the pages of scripture, I have solutions to spiritual problems. And I am going to look at that as an absolute truth. Absolute word of God can live that way. And then finally, the last point for all of this is how is it that we are going to live? Are we going to be able to trust what God is going to do? I put it this way. Trust what Christ has done for you. Trust what Christ is done for you is more than enough. It's more than enough. It's more than enough, you guys. It's more than enough. This world last. This long. It's short.
[00:53:25] It's precarious. Eternity is like this. How is it? We are going to live.
[00:53:38] Being in England and in Edinburgh, and I told you I was getting to preach to all these people outside the St. Charles Church. And this young man walked up to me and he was probably about 25 years old. His name was Michael. And he was so excited to hear what we were preaching. Matter of fact, the parts of the text I preached to you this this morning is what I preach at the St Giles Cathedral. And he ran up to our people and ran up to me. And he was just so excited. And, you know, he is excited to hear. He was excited to tell me his testimony. He'd become a Christian. Two months earlier, he lived in a community in Scotland about two hours away. He was coming to St Preach and he was on the Royal Mile and in Edinburgh and he wanted to tell people the good news of Jesus Christ. And I started talking to him for all of it. And the thing that he loved to hear the most was the preaching God's word. And I see now, Michael, I said I've been in Christ a bit longer than you have. But I couldn't agree with you anymore. I said, you know, listening to all this liturgy and beautiful churches and everything else, the most beautiful thing that I've heard on this trip are the pages of scripture and the words of God in our lives.
[00:54:54] Gavin, thank you for this morning. We thank you for the opportunity we have to. To come here to assemble as the body of Christ. God as we do, we want to be reminded of the truth that were found here in Colossians. Chapter number two. God. We want to be reminded to the point that they would drive home repentance in our world, that we would rethink the way that we live this morning. And God, we want to conform to your image, the image of your son, the Lord Jesus Christ. We know that comes through a study of your word and not only a study of it, but a clear application of it, like the wise man who heard your words and then put them into practice. He did those things. We want to be like that. So, Father, I pray no matter where we are today in our Christian walk, if we're brand new in Christ, if we are in Christ many, many years that you would work with us, that you would conform us, that you would work vibrantly in our hearts. God, these are tough times in our world. I see that these people see it. I pray that you would encourage our hearts this morning and that you would bless these people, I pray to you would protect them in every way possible, protect them spiritually from the attack of the enemy and protect them. God again, physically from the evils of this world. We know, God, that you're a good God, a great God. And we pray that you would do good and great things to these people and through these people. And we ask all of that in the great name of your son, the Lord Jesus Christ, Amen.
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