Thursday, June 4, 2009

Sermon Outline - Taking Aim at the Manifesto

- A young boy told his dad that he wanted a tree house in the backyard, so the dad remembering all the fun he had in his tree house goes and buys a bunch of wood. He returns to the backyard and with his mental image of what his sons tree house will look like, gets after it cutting wood and hammering and about halfway through things stopped working, boards had been cut too short and things just weren’t fitting together.
- The dad had the right motive, had a great goal in mind but he went about it the wrong way, we need right motives and great goals, but we also need to go about achieving our goals in the right way. This is what we are going to talk about tonight - how to go about achieving our manifesto.

Pursue in the Lords Strength
- If we try to achieve the manifesto in our own strength we are doomed to failure.
- So what are we to do, in light of our weakness and our dreams, what are we to do, where are to turn. The answer is to go to one who is strong.
- Read - Ephes. 6:10-12
- If we are to be strong we must find our strength in the Lord and His might.
- Paul also points to another complication - we have enemies. Not just a demanding task, but we have enemies. Paul says that we do not wrestle with flesh and blood but against the evil spiritual rulers in the heavenly places. He even calls our world, this present darkness.
- Facing this enemy we are utterly powerless.
- But there is hope, Paul says that if we take the armor of God we can stand firm
- Read - Ephes. 6:13
- So if we want to achieve our goals, if we want to be the church God wants us to be we must fight in full dependence on God’s power.
Illus - In Itasca Texas before WW2 there was a school fire that killed 263 kids, so they built a world-class sprinkler system, nothing like it had been in Texas before, then seven years later they were working on the grounds and discovered that the sprinkler system had never been connected to the water supply, it would have done nothing to the fire.

Pursue for God’s Glory
- Read - 1 Cor. 10:31
- If we pursue this manifesto for the purpose of having a great church that we can be proud of, or be proud to be a part of, or of being able to hear people say great things about that Baptist church on Big Creek, then we are not taking aim aright.
- What we must truly want is to be this kind of church and these kind of people so that we can better glorify God, if we have any other goal we will miss the mark. And we will be disobedient and unfaithful.
- But if our desire truly is to become a healthy spiritually mature, ministering, missionary church then we will be better able to accomplish His purposes, better able to honor Him before the watching eyes of our community.
- But we must decide now what we are aiming at.
- So what we must decide is that we want to be these things so that God is praised for what He has done

Pursue by Faith
- Mark 6:4-6 - Jesus in His hometown
- Mark 10:46-52 - the healing of Blind Bartimaeus
- The principle we see here in these two passages is that it is faith that opens the floodgate of God’s power and blessing.
- Recently we have seen water leave its normal channel - but God’s power and blessing rarely leave this channel - faith.
- So as we pursue our manifesto let us do it with the firm conviction of faith that God can and will bless us - let us come expectantly - trusting that we will see the Lord do amazing thing in our midst.

Pursue the Motive of Love
- Read - Matthew 22:37-40
- As we seek to grow spiritually mature our motive must be love for God - we want to be like Jesus because we love God and want to please Him above all else
- As we seek to minister to our brothers and sisters in Christ we must do so with the motive of love for them - to see what all God would do in their lives.
- If we are to be missionaries in our community then it must be with the motive of love - that we love people so much that we get out of our comfort zones and tell them the Good News.

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