Do Your Job

Galatians   •  Sermon  •  Submitted   •  Presented   •  31:03
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First Sunday of Advent - Hope
Opening prayer, dedication
Music ministry
563 Count Your Blessings (1,2,4)
564 We Are So Blessed
Come Thou Fount (Above All Else)
Word of God - Galatians 6:6-10
Message - “Do Your Job”
The caption in my Bible for this passage today says “Final warning and Benediction”
That sounds rather ominous
Especially on the first Sunday of Advent when we light the candle representing “hope”
We are rapidly approaching the end of this beautiful and strong letter Paul wrote to the church of Galatia
This letter has three sections
Chapters 1-2 talk are Paul claiming his apostleship as valid
That Paul truly was representing Jesus and speaking for Him
Chapters 3-4 Paul defended the gospel
Salvation by grace alone through faith alone
Chapters 5-6 Paul is telling us how to live a Christian life
What a great way to come into the season of Advent
The word “advent” comes from the Latin root “adventus” which mean “coming”
Advent season is the focus and celebration of what is “coming”
So, today we light the “hope” candle as we focus on the hope that Jesus represents in what is to come
[Light Hope Candle]
At the point of his writing this letter to the church of Galatia,
Paul was certainly not focused on pain or fear for that day
Instead, Paul was writing about the hope that was in him for what awaits in Heaven
Paul was trying to solidify the teaching that would allow others to enjoy the hope he had because Paul knew Jesus
Paul wanted others to benefit from the true gospel
While Advent is technically a celebration of us looking forward to the coming of Jesus
We, like Paul, know that Jesus has already arrived,,Once
For us New Testament Christians, we actually are looking forward to the the future “coming” of Jesus
Which is when Jesus returns
at which time, even the culture will come to know that Jesus is Lord
and every knee will bow
I’m getting ahead of myself
I struggled to find a good metaphor or example of how we are to live our Christian lives
I kept coming back around to comparing our lives to being within a HUGE stores like Walmart Super Center or HEB Central Market
Once you are in the store, you have choices
Boy do you have choices
Think about he HEB on 306 and IH-35
To the right you have the produce department
To the FAR left you have the pharmacy
My guess is that the more time you shop in the produce department
The less time and money you will spend in the pharmacy section
In between you have everything from ice chests and river gear to snack foods, candy, etc.
If you claim to want to lose weight and be healthier
yet you spend time in the snack and candy aisle
Then you don’t have much hope of REALLY getting healthier and you don't understand sowing and reaping, right?
Taking this a step closer to the message today
Galatians 6:6
Galatians 6:6 ESV
6 Let the one who is taught the word share all good things with the one who teaches.
There are teachers and students in the world, right?
Truly, even teachers are students because teachers are always learning
We learn from outside sources
and teachers learn from their students
We learn new things to teach
Teachers learn new ways to teach
because we see that some methods connect and work and others don’t
In that regard, the students actually teach the teachers
This is how it works in your faith life
As your pastor, I teach what the Word of God says and “reveal” that truth of how that Word impacts, or should impact the way you live your life
In turn, I see the fruit of the teaching by the way you live your life
I am clearly not responsible for the WAY you live your life
But I am responsible for making sure I have taught you what God says
The rest is your choice and your responsibility
You can liken it to your doctor telling you that you need to reduce carbohydrates or sugar
then you run into your doctor with a cart full of potato chips and fried pork rinds
At least the chips cover up the cases of soda and beer, right?
The Doctor is NOT responsible for what you put in your shopping cart
As long as they explained the problem and offered a solution
Verse 6 today would be where you learn some biblical truth from a Sunday message or other teaching
And you come back to the teacher and let them know how that teaching was used and what you learned from that experience
Or, how you dug deeper and were able to understand even more
Or, how you were able to teach others
Along the way, there will be lies and deception
Things that sound too good to be true
Temptations to just “browse” in the abundance of life
or, maybe to “live a little”, it can’t hurt
Truth is still truth, though
Galatians 6:7
Galatians 6:7 ESV
7 Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.
One problem we have is all the STUFF that assaults us on the way to the produce department
If you enter the “wrong side” of the store
You will walk past the chips, candy and other snacks
all to get to the good stuff in the produce department
You know they put the dairy in the back of the store because most families buy at least SOME dairy
Often the other commodity meats like basic chicken legs and ground beef on on the opposite corner of the store
Along your path, you will see signs that make you think you should at least “browse”
“All natural” - natural is good, right?
“Low salt” - I’m supposed to reduce my salt, right?
If you really want to have HOPE that you will get healthier, you need to know how to identify a deception or lie
Natural is not always good
Arsenic is the most common rat poison and it occurs naturally in the soil in Texas
“Low” in low salt is relative
You have to know the item is “lower than what” and whether you used to eat the higher salt comparison
Your doctor will usually know at your next appointment if you REALLY ate the right foods
God will ALWAYS know if you spent time thinking or doing what you shouldn’t
God will not be fooled or mocked
I love this agricultural reference to sowing and reaping
Kids, if I planted a tomato seed, I would expect a tomato plant to grow
If I planted a orange seed, I would expect an orange to grow
The same thing is true with our thoughts and actions
If I want someone to be nice and loving to me
Should I be mean and yell at them? NO!
If I want someone to know that Jesus loves them and will forgive them just like I do
Should I be understanding, forgiving and loving toward them? -YES!
Brothers and sisters in Christ,
if we want others to have hope, then we need to introduce them to the only One who can give eternal hope - Jesus
That’s what Paul was doing
Paul wasn’t satisfied just introducing the Galatians to Jesus
Paul had done that already
Paul was concerned with making sure they stayed inn touch with Jesus
We can only stay in touch with Jesus if we keep focus on Jesus
Here’s what I mean
Galatians 6:8 describes what happens to most shortly after they get “closer to Jesus”
Galatians 6:8 ESV
8 For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.
If we are not careful, our attention shifts from the godly to the secular (things of the flesh)
If healthy eating choices caused you to lose a bunch of weight
and you start “treating” yourself with more snacks and “bad” food
That means you are sowing seeds of unhealthy living
Then you will start reaping what you were sowing
Excess weight will return and your health will suffer
If your family gets closer together during the Christmas season
If you go to worship together
If you go to Bible studies
Then in this new glow of closeness you shift your attention from God to travel, sports or other activities
You are sowing seeds of the flesh
In a spiritual sense you will experience Romans 6:21
Romans 6:21 ESV
21 But what fruit were you getting at that time from the things of which you are now ashamed? For the end of those things is death.
We need to remind ourselves and those around us that we a BELIEVERS first
since we were set free from sin, we should not return to it
Romans 6:22-23
Romans 6:22–23 ESV
22 But now that you have been set free from sin and have become slaves of God, the fruit you get leads to sanctification and its end, eternal life. 23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
It’s like a Price is Right moment
‘Do you want what’s behind Door #1?’
Or, ‘do you want what’s behind Door #2?’
Except that in this case the door is clear so we can see what’s behind the door
Door #1 is sin which means death
Door #2 is eternal life with Jesus our Lord
Easy choice, right?
That’s the source of our hope Romans 15:13
Romans 15:13 ESV
13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope.
If we want to share hope with others, then we must be full of hope
And the One who gives us hope is Jesus
Jesus sent the Holy Spirit to guide and encourage us
SO, to bear the fruits of the Spirit
we must sow the fruits of the Spirit
Galatians 5:22-23
Galatians 5:22–23 ESV
22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
We, as Believers, should always sow to the Spirit
then we will reap from the Spirit
But if we choose to do the opposite, we can learn the result from Job 4:8
Job 4:8 ESV
8 As I have seen, those who plow iniquity and sow trouble reap the same.
If we think hopeless thoughts, we will grow more hopeless thoughts
If we are judgmental of others we will be harshly judged
You get the picture
Instead, Galatians 6:9-10 calls us to never get weary of doing good or godly things
Without thinking of the timeline of when we will get a return on our efforts
We are to be the people of 1 Timothy 6:18
1 Timothy 6:18 ESV
18 They are to do good, to be rich in good works, to be generous and ready to share,
This is our job as believers
We are to be generous to ALL people
regardless of whether they are fellow believers or not, be generous
But be ESPECIALLY generous to your brothers ans sisters in Christ
Let this season of Advent be a time that we share the Hope that is within us
Our job, in fact, is that each of us be a living hope as described in 1 Peter 1:3
1 Peter 1:3 ESV
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
Let us do our job well, so that we are each a living hope to others, now and always
Closing Hymn/Invitation: 91 Alleluia (1,2,4,)
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