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Wherever, Whatever, Whenever, However . . . Christ!, Part 3

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll
The Truth Network Radio
April 6, 2022 7:05 am

Wherever, Whatever, Whenever, However . . . Christ!, Part 3

Insight for Living / Chuck Swindoll

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April 6, 2022 7:05 am

Jesus Christ, Our All in All: A Study of Colossians

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Today, from Chuck Swindoll. Wherever you may be and whatever you may be, your work or your kind of home, Christ will eliminate the obstacles when you make Him master. Whenever, however, Christ will enable you to change. Your goal in life is not the other person changing, it's you changing.

It's amazing what happens when you and I change. It makes all the difference in the world, in our life, in our home, and at our work. In the Bible, married couples are given explicit instructions on how to keep the peace. Men are taught to love their wives. And conversely, women are taught to submit to their husbands. Wait, what?

Submit? Today on Insight for Living, Chuck Swindoll is teaching from a passage in Colossians chapter 3 that has become a lightning rod for controversy. And yet Chuck contends this timeless truth is proven to be effective in cultivating healthy relationships.

In the event you missed yesterday's program, we'll begin with helpful highlights. Chuck titled his message, Wherever, Whatever, Whenever, However, Christ. When I think of peace, I think of inner quietness, tranquility, a feeling of calm, secure serenity. When I have peace, I'm at ease.

I'm at rest. And here he says, let that peace be in your heart. He's called us to live in peace. You see how the verse ends? And by the way, be thankful.

And you are. When the peace of Christ acts as umpire in your life, you're always thankful. You can't help but say, Lord, thank you for giving me this sense of serenity when I was in such unrest. You need the peace that only Christ can give. And when you allow him to serve as umpire, he will call that shot and you will know it.

Until you know it, don't decide. Wait for it. Now that's the peace of Christ in the heart.

Now I go to the next one. Here he says, let the message about Christ or the word of Christ, like us, it's the word for word, let the word of Christ in all its richness fill your life. What does that mean? It means think on it. Read it. Listen to it when it's taught. Respect it. Pour over it. Make a study of it. Memorize portions of it. Let it fill your life.

Let it become a part of your vocabulary, part of your way of thinking. What Moses says affects the way you think. What Jeremiah writes affects the way you think and respond. What David puts together in the Psalms or Paul or Peter or Jude or James or John, all of it fits together and before long it begins to fill your life. See what the verse says? Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly. Let the message in all its richness fill your life. Even so that when you are asked about advice, let your teaching and counsel with others be filled with the wisdom that God gives. By the way, the byproduct of that, look at the verse. We sing songs and hymns and spiritual songs to God and he mentions again thankful hearts. The role of music comes again and gives you that delight in the will of God.

In fact, he says in verse 17, whatever you do or say, do it as a representative of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks through him to God the Father. You know when you do that? When he's your all in all. When he is that, it flows naturally and there is a lot of common sense wrapped around it and before you know it you're guided and guarded from extremes as you think about it.

Okay, you following it? The peace of Christ in the heart, the word of Christ in the life. Now we come to the presence of Christ that is to permeate our homes and families. Now it gets a little bit convicting, correction. It gets very convicting, okay? Hang on wives, I'm going to say something very non-politically correct, okay?

Better stated, politically incorrect. That's why I believe it. Wives, submit to your husbands as is fitting for those who belong to the Lord. Submit means submit, adapt your life to his.

And you know what's amazing? When Christ is your all in all, it isn't nearly as irksome as you might think. When you're selfish it is.

When your head's strong it is. When he does things you don't like, it'll aggravate you if he's your all in all. But if Christ is your all in all, you don't see the adapting as that sacrificial. It's fitting for those who belong to the Lord. It's fitting for you who belong to the Lord that you adapt your life to your husband. Now husbands, quit poking your wives. That's not fair.

In fact I'm going to get to you right now. Husbands, love your wives and never treat them harshly. Interesting, isn't it? We are instructed by a command here and in Ephesians 5 to love her. It's agape love. It's a love that doesn't expect a reciprocal love in return. It's a one way love. It's a love that represents honor and respect. There's even a sense of adoration in it. Have a place in your life that is so filled with love that bears the name and the life of your wife that it's obvious to her how much you care for her. Christ is important when he's your all in all. The home isn't about you and it isn't about her. It's about Christ who's the one who called you together.

See how it works? We've fouled it up because we've done it all with such humanism. Look how revolutionary Paul's words are. Husbands, love her. In fact Ephesians says love her as Christ loved the church and gave himself for her. She loves you enough to submit to you. You love her enough to die for her and you would do so willingly when you love her like this. How magnificent is that kind of harmony? How great is that kind of marriage?

How rarely it occurs because we are driven by an old nature that wants our way. We call our own shots, thank you, but when Christ is your all in all, whenever, however, wherever and whatever, you love her. You don't even enjoy a meal without her. Nor does she want to run off on her own without knowing how you feel about it.

She cares about you. Now, children, whew, we got past that so let's get to children. What are children supposed to do? Well, wouldn't you know it? Always obey your parents for this pleases the Lord.

There it is. I didn't write it. I'm just a spokesman and I've lived long enough to know that if a child doesn't learn obedience in the home, he has a rough road ahead of him and will often suffer dreadful consequences as Christ breaks him down and he has to learn or she has to learn obedience. The home is the place where a child is to learn respect for authority. Don't give up your role as a parent. Don't give it up.

Don't listen to the media. Don't let the extreme be your standard. We're not talking about beating a child. There's nothing here or anywhere in the Bible that justifies such abuse.

That's nonsense. We teach a child obedience as we love them, as we shape their lives with counsel and time and appropriate discipline. And the child begins to reveal that kind of obedience as the years come to pass and the child grows up to be an adult who obeys. My life is a life of obedience.

The same for every other adult here. Thankfully, I was raised in a home where obedience was expected and in fact demanded but it was fair. You don't speak to your mother like that. This is not the way you respond. Your attitude stinks.

Correct it. And on and on as I grew up and you know what happened. Let me tell you about this.

When I reached the early 20s and it was time for military obligation, I joined the Marine Corps. They have a way of expecting submission to authority. They have a way of doing that. You want to know something? Not bragging. I give my folks all the credit. I never struggled with authority in the Marine Corps.

Of course I submit. They're an authority over me. They have a higher rank.

They've been around. They make statements. Those around me that struggled in the Corps, some of them ready to take their life because they couldn't stand it, were those who never learned to submit and they hadn't learned at home.

So for them it was a radical change. It was no different than hearing those words from my own father or mother. I learned as a child to obey.

It says for this pleases the Lord. It doesn't please the child because a child has an old nature and the child will put you to the test. I'm telling you, you know that.

But our tendency is to give up. Cynthia and I were having dinner and we noticed at a table next to us there was a couple with this darling little boy. They're always darling when they're not your own. So this darling little boy is sitting there and he's eating his macaroni and cheese. That's right, macaroni and cheese. He's just stuffing it on his ear and nose.

He's having a great time. And up come triplets, little triplets trucking up there. And all of a sudden the mom and dad are up on their feet serving this, getting that, this and there.

She's got this. She doesn't want that. She puts her spaghetti and his cheese. He doesn't want that in his cheese. So he throws it at her and then she's up and she's time for dessert. So he gets dessert, brings it back and she lick into dessert and it's her sister's dessert. And so she doesn't like that. So she puts that on the little boy's plate. Little boy don't like it.

So he gets rid of that. And these parents are all over the plate. We had the most wonderful meal watching this dear couple.

You know what? They were terrific parents. They were terrific. I mean, the dad was just as involved as the mother, of course. These dads would go, you're the mother. You take care of them. That's the stupidest thing you could say. You're the don't know.

Why are you saying that? Get involved. Get engaged. Tell them how much they mean to you.

In fact, the next verse is a good one, isn't it? Fathers. It could be parents, fathers and mothers. Don't aggravate your children. How do you aggravate a child? By the way, the word means to arouse, to provoke, to irritate and even to embit her. How do you make a child bitter? Well, your discipline is too harsh. It's too often. It isn't mixed with sufficient love.

You weren't verbalizing your affection. You're criticizing your child more than you're affirming your child. That's discouraging for anyone. If all I did with you as a flock is to criticize you, believe me, this building would be half empty. You don't come to be criticized. Furthermore, it's not my role. And as a parent, you certainly must deal with wrong, but you don't aggravate your children. Why?

See what it says? They will become discouraged. Let me speak to you dads because it's addressed to fathers.

We can be the worst at this. Because we weren't raised with a lot of affection, quite likely for you, then you tend not to raise your child with a lot of affection. You love them, but you just don't say it. I came across a statement from John Newton, preacher, hymn writer who gave us amazing grace. How sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me. Newton lived a wretched life before Christ, lived on the street early on. He said in one place, I know that my father loved me, but he did not seem to wish me to see it.

My heart went out to John Newton when I read that. Your children need to see it. They need to hear it. By the way, back to our little meal the other night, my dad and the mom, the dad leaned over several times and whispered something really great to his little boy.

I really wish I could have heard what he said. It looked so affectionate. And he put his arm around the head of a couple of his little triplets.

One of them didn't want him to touch her, but he did love this other one. Dads, come on. They need you. They long to hear what you have to say about what you believe in. We're having a Father's Day meal, happens to be Father's Day today, and we're going to have 16 at our table.

And that's because some of them couldn't come. And one of the little holes in our table will be our youngest son who lives somewhere a long ways away now. So last night I took time to write him. And I told him how much he means to me. I thought I'd write a few words and, you know, I wasn't going to add a poem or anything like that or sermonize. I'm just going to tell him how much I miss him and how much I care about him.

Recently he had his 22nd anniversary and had his 44th birthday. And we connected with him for both. He wrote back the sweetest comment. You see, I don't tell you that to make a big deal out of me because more often than not, I've done it wrong. More often than not, I spoke too quickly. And Cynthia pulled me, well she doesn't pull me, but when we wind up in the bedroom, she would say to me, you know, a few minutes ago, you embarrassed our daughter.

I don't think you meant to, but you embarrassed her. Boy, that's so helpful. And you know, my tendency is to say, well, the other day you yelled at our son. That doesn't solve anything. I say, you know what, you're right. I'm wrong.

So I'd make it right. Kids appreciate apologies. I've never known of a child that'd go, nope, I'm not going to forgive you. No matter how often you say it, I'm not going to forgive you. You embarrassed me and I'm going to hold that against you for the rest of your life. They don't do that.

They remember that you cared enough to apologize. Okay? We don't want to discourage our children.

We want to encourage them. Now for the workplace, and I'll do this quick because you don't like where you work, so I'll get over it quickly. Just kidding. You're the slave, okay? You say, well, that fits. That's a good start. Okay, let me give you a quick list on what to do as a good employee, and they're all from right here in the Bible. You don't have to make things up. They're right here in the Bible. Number one, do as you're instructed to do without complaining.

That's verse 22. Obey your earthly masters in everything you do. You do that, chances are you'll be promoted and you'll get a raise.

Maybe not right away, but you'll be noticed and you'll stand out. If you're in a group where that makes other people look bad, tough. You go ahead and do what's right. Do what's right with a good attitude. Second, be diligent even when you're unobserved.

See how it reads? It says, work willingly at whatever you do. It said earlier, try to please them all the time, not just when they're watching you. So be diligent even when unobserved. Here's the third, realize that your employment reveals your commitment to Christ.

Where do I get that? Verse 23, work willingly at whatever you do as though you were working for the Lord rather than for people. Is that great or what? When you have that attitude, it makes all the difference in the world.

How faithful and loyal you are as an employee. I remember that story of Howie Hendrix. I've told it to you. He was on the airplane at American Airlines. They were flying.

The guy was belligerent and became difficult and hard to deal with. And this lady who was serving as part of the group that was serving meals and drinks and whatever, and she just patiently, patiently worked with this man. And Hendrix finally said after the flight was almost over, he went back to her and he said to this flight attendant, I just want to commend you. In fact, I'd like your name because I want to write the president of American Airlines and tell him what a great job you did. She said, oh, I don't work for American Airlines. She's wearing American Airlines uniform.

He said, you don't? She said, no, I work for the Lord Jesus Christ. Just so happens to be American Airlines that I'm serving.

All right. No wonder she's patient. She's serving Christ.

Isn't that wonderful? It says the master you're serving is Christ. Now, a word to you who are employers.

Look at verse one of Chapter four. Be just and fair to your slaves. Bosses, those of you who are leaders in the company, CEOs, CEOs, you who are the folks who give other directions, be just and fair. How can you be just in your expectations and in your decisions? Be just in your expectations, your decisions. Guard against playing favorites.

The last line of verse twenty five is God has no favorites. So be just in your expectations and be fair in your wages and your words. Pay a good wage.

Good employees are worth a good wage. And it says, remember, you have a master in heaven, so you, too, are accountable. And you're to be kept humble. OK, wrap it up wherever and whatever Christ will eliminate.

The obstacles when you operate like this. Wherever you may be and whatever you may be, your work or your kind of home, Christ will eliminate the obstacles. When you make him master. All in all, whenever, however, Christ will enable you to change. Your goal in life is not the other person changing, it's you changing. And it's amazing what happens when you and I change.

Makes all the difference in the world in our life, in our home and at our work. Please bow with me. Sit very quietly for a moment. You claim Christ as your own savior and Lord. You've trusted him as your master. These words are for you.

Everyone said in sincerity and every one of them based on the Scriptures. These words are for you. You're to think on it.

You're to act on it. Whatever you do or say, you represent the Lord Jesus. May it make a difference in peace ruling your heart, in the Word of God filling your life, in the presence of Christ permeating your home and family, in the life of Christ on display where you work. If you've never met the Lord Jesus, he's available.

He waits for you to turn to him. Trust him right now. Don't try to clean up your life.

You can't do that. Just trust Christ right now. He'll clean up your life once he becomes master. Lord God, your son is our strength when we are weak. He's the treasure that we seek. He's our all in all. How we love him.

How closely we would love to walk with him. Help us to do that deep within when we make decisions. Open our minds as we talk in counsel with others. In the surrounding of our home as parents or children, your grandparents, relatives, and as workmen and women, be pleased, Lord, for your son is our all in all. In the name of Jesus, we pray this.

Everybody sit. Amen. You're listening to Insight for Living and the Bible teaching of pastor and author Chuck Swindoll. Today's study represents message number eight in a ten-part teaching series on Colossians.

And to learn more about this ministry, visit us online at insightworld.org. You'll also be pleased to learn that Chuck has written a fascinating biography on the man who wrote this New Testament letter to the Colossians. It's titled Paul, a Man of Grace and Grit. Paul identified himself as the worst of sinners, so it's truly astonishing that this one-time Christian persecutor became an ambassador for the grace of God. You'll love reading about his story in Chuck's book, Paul, a Man of Grace and Grit.

To purchase a copy, go to insight.org slash offer or call us. If you're listening in the United States, call 800-772-8888. In the last several months, we've heard from thousands of friends from all around the world who've affirmed the value of Chuck's Bible teaching. In recent days, I've seen comments from listeners in places like Veracruz, Mexico, the Philippines, and this creative comment from a follower on Twitter who said, I cannot commend Insight for Living highly enough.

And then he added, an inside a day keeps sorrow and folly at bay. Well, this encouraging feedback motivates us to keep forging ahead, not only here in North America, but in all 195 countries of the world. But we can't advance without the support of generous listeners like you who sustain Insight for Living, either through one-time donations or by becoming a monthly companion. You can partner with us by calling us. If you're listening in the United States, call 800-772-8888. That phone number again, 800-772-8888. Or give a donation online at insight.org slash donate. I'm Bill Meyer, inviting you to join us when Chuck Swindoll presents what he calls A Brief Checklist for Believers, Thursday on Insight for Living. The preceding message, Wherever, Whatever, Whenver, However, Christ, was copyrighted in 2014 and 2022, and the sound recording was copyrighted in 2022 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. All rights are reserved worldwide. Duplication of copyrighted material for commercial use is strictly prohibited.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-05-11 13:03:02 / 2023-05-11 13:12:17 / 9

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