Your Supernatural Resources
1 Thessalonians 1:1-3
Hattie Green was dead.
There was no doubt about that.
She died sometime in 1916.
But from the looks of her life, she had been among the living dead for a long time.
Hattie lived in poverty.
She ate cold oatmeal because it cost money to heat it.
When her son’s leg became infected, Hattie wouldn’t get it treated until she could find a clinic that wouldn't charge her.
By then, her son's leg had to be amputated.
Hattie died arguing over the value of drinking skim milk
Here’s the shocker:
When Hattie died, her estate was valued at over $100 million.
She had money to meet her every need, but she chose to live as if it didn't exist.
Hattie Green’s story pictures many Christians who either ignore or neglect the supernatural resources that are ours in Jesus Christ.
We are children of the King, yet many of us live like spiritual paupers.
Today, we’re going to talk about the supernatural resources that God gives us for victorious Christian living.
[Read 1 Thessalonians 1:1-3] \\ \\
Universe around us … is so easily divided into groups of three.
Ask the physicist – he’ll tell you that the physical universe is divided into three parts: time, space, and matter.
Ask the historian – he’ll tell you that time is divided into three parts: past, present, and future.
Ask the architect – he’ll tell you that space is divided into three parts: length, breadth, and height.
Ask the chemist – he’ll tell you that matter exists in three forms: gas, solid, and liquid.
The universe around us bears the mark of its Creator – the Triune God – Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.
And, in these verses we see that every believer –
Whether you were saved yesterday or whether you were saved 30 years ago
– every believer has been given three supernatural resources for living the Christian life.
One is faith.
The second – and greatest – is love.
The third is hope.
And all three of them depend on the one whose name is mentioned in verse one: “Our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Before we go any further, think with me for a moment about that phrase, “Our Lord Jesus Christ.”
The word “Lord” identifies Him as our Master.
We belong to Him.
We follow Him.
We obey Him.
2. The name “Jesus” identifies Him as our Mediator.
He came to die on the cross in order to bring us to God.
3. The term “Christ” identifies Him as our Messiah.
He was the /Christos//, /the Messiah, God’s anointed, chosen one, who came to redeem us and deliver us from sin.
If Jesus is your Master, your Mediator, and your Messiah – then Jesus has given you supernatural resources for living.
Let’s take a look at each of those resources:
The first resource has to do with your past…
**Your Past: Faith in Jesus Transformed You*
In your past, Jesus transformed you.
Paul wrote that he never stopped thanking God for the Thessalonian believers …
1 Thessalonians 1:3 \\ remembering without ceasing your work of faith …
“Work of faith.”
What does that mean?
It means in the recent past, these former pagans and idol worshipers from Thessalonica had placed faith in Jesus as their Savior.
Look down in verse 9:
… you turned from idols to serve the living and true God …
That is faith at work.
Faith is not merely belief; faith works.
It has the power to change.
Faith enables you to turn from what is wrong to what is right.
Faith empowers you to turn from dark and hurtful things to right and true and healthy things.
They had been transformed by Jesus.
And Jesus was now making a difference in the way they …
Treated other people.
There had been a work of faith.
Now, we are not saved by good works.
The Bible is crystal clear about that.
Ephesians 2:8-9 \\ For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God, not of works, lest anyone should boast.
Nothing about my salvation depends on what I have done.
If I were to serve up to God …
Mountains of my own morality.
Globes of my own goodness.
Enough personal virtue and good deeds to fill all the oceans of a million worlds.
All of that would not outweigh my sins on God’s scales.
Only by God’s grace, through faith in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ – can I ever be saved.
But once I am saved, Jesus will work in my life and will transform who I am and what I do and how I live.
Ephesians 2:10 \\ For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.
The church at Thessalonica was a young church.
All of the believers there were recent converts to Christianity.
But – already – their faith was working in their lives.
Already – there was a change that everyone could see.
IL: Mongolian Grill.
You fill a bowl with frozen meat, raw vegetables, maybe an egg – add some spices, then you take the bowl to the grill and they cook it for you.
Unless you use the wrong spices.
Then you have to eat your mistake.
Going down the line.
Not too many vegetables.
You fill up on vegetables at those places – that’s how they get you.
Then came to the spices.
For some reason, absent mindedly put three heaping spoonfuls of cayenne pepper on top of my bowl.
Two reason: Younger and dumber than I am now.
Couldn’t undo it.
Took it to the cooks at the grill.
They cooked that cayenne pepper into everything.
Everything that cayenne pepper touched was transformed – including my lips, tongue, and throat!
In the same way, when Jesus touches your life, He transforms your life.
The moment you were saved, He came into your life, and He is working to transform every part of you.