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Set Apart to Serve, Part 2

Delight in Grace / Grace Bible Church / Rich Powell
The Truth Network Radio
June 12, 2024 10:00 am

Set Apart to Serve, Part 2

Delight in Grace / Grace Bible Church / Rich Powell

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June 12, 2024 10:00 am

We share a common brokenness with our fellow man. And also a common Redeemer. If we Understand that the darkness and hardness of heart is natural to me as much as to another and know the life-giving, freeing work of the Savior on our behalf. How then can we not be FOR one another? Jen Hatmaker writes What if we were intentionally sent to this world – not to stand in judgment of it, not to remain separate in our safe Christian confines – but to be for it; to be representative of Jesus, to bear the good news everywhere we go?

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Welcome to Delight in Grace, the teaching ministry of Rich Powell, pastor of Grace Bible Church in Winston-Salem. We share a common brokenness with our fellow man and also a common Redeemer. If I understand that the darkness and hardness of heart is natural to me as much as to another, and know the life-giving, freeing work of the Savior on my behalf, how can I not be for my fellow man? Jen Hatmaker writes, What if we were intentionally sent to this world, not to stand in judgment of it, not to remain separate in our safe Christian confines, but to be for it, to be representative of Jesus, to bear the good news everywhere we go? Let's listen as Pastor Rich shares this message titled Set Apart to Serve. This is the second part of a study on 2 Corinthians 6, 4-10.

It was originally preached on May 4, 2014. And it startled me, and so I jumped out of bed, and he came running across the room at me, and he threw his arms at me, and he said, Mommy, please help me, I'm dying. I think she went to run for her phone to call 911, and that's when Mason stopped breathing. Glenn gave Mason CPR for about six minutes.

When the paramedics came, I had his heart beating, and then they worked on Mason for about 20 minutes in the hospital, and tried all the different things that they could try to bring him back, until it was clear to everybody that he wasn't coming back. Of course, I lost control, and I knew, God was telling me, I am a compassionate God, I'm a loving God, I love him enough to take him. So I was pretty angry, and I said to Tana, so if there's a God, how could he take my son? I said to him, don't you dare be angry at him, because he is all that we have.

And at that point, I brought him into my life, and into my heart, and I knew, it just knew. So the next day, Pat Sullivan explained to us how there's a chance that God was answering Mason's prayers, as opposed to not answering ours. I shifted from, if there's a God, how could he take my son? If there's a God, how could he take my son?

There is a God, and how could he not take my son? And the church reached out to us, and they had this gigantic, amazing funeral, and we hadn't given any money to the church, we weren't members of the church, it's an amazing community, and God stood us up, and sent us out to smile, and tell people that you have a relationship with Jesus, you don't need anything else, because there's been some tough times in that four years since Mason died, but it's been the best four years of my life. I used to hear people say, count your blessings, and I used to think, my motorcycle, my gold watch, the money that's in my bank account, those aren't blessings, blessings are friendships, joy, your family, it'd be pretty rare to catch Glen Ray working on a Sunday anymore, that's our family time, that's our church time, we pray as a family, and we study the Bible as a family, and are grateful as a family.

My name is Tana Ray. I'm Glen Ray, and this is the story of my family, and we're proud and blessed to be able to tell it. Do you see what a community of grace is? As fellow humans, in a fallen creation, we identify with each other in a common brokenness, and yet as we walk in the prospect and the promise of restoration and redemption, we can invite others in, and invite them to the hope that we have in Jesus Christ.

That is what a community of grace is, inevitably, everyone faces a crisis, everyone will face adversity, you and every friend in your life, friend means friends, relatives, associates, and neighbors, everyone will face an adversity, and you as a minister of God, and as a fellow human in a fallen creation can be the bridge for them to the redeemer and the restorer. That is what a community of grace does, and that is what discipleship is, as you hear the term discipleship here at Grace Bible Church, it is my hope, it is my prayer, and as we as pastors and deacons are discussing this, we want you to know what discipleship is. We want you not to be thinking, well, I keep hearing discipleship, but what does it mean? It means this, let me give you this definition, and I really want you to take this with you today, okay, because this is what happens in a community of grace.

Discipleship is one life coming alongside another to walk together God-ward, one life coming alongside another to walk together God-ward, that is all it is. You saw it in this video, you saw the effects of a community of grace where an adversity of grace, where an adversity of life, God used that adversity and a Christian community to draw people to himself. He is a reconciling God, he is a compassionate God, and so we are ministers of God as fellow humans in a fallen creation.

We identify with each other at the level of humanity, we have a common brokenness, and we live in that brokenness. But not only that, we are also ministers of God as beloved children of the Heavenly Father. Yes, we are fellow humans in a fallen creation, but we are also ministers of God as the beloved children of the Heavenly Father. We find this in the text now in verses 6 and 7. Look what he says, going back to verse 4, in all things we commend ourselves as ministers of God, verse 6, by purity, by knowledge, by long suffering, by kindness.

What are those? Those are characteristics of God. And they manifest, they flow through children of God.

He says, by the Holy Spirit, by sincere love, by the word of truth, by the power of God, by the armor of righteousness, on the right hand and on the left. That means that we are ministers of God as the beloved children of the Heavenly Father because God is our reference. He is our anchor, and therefore we can maintain perspective. Not only is He our anchor in terms of perspective, but He is our resource. The infinite, sovereign, benevolent creator. We have His resources to do life as the beloved children of the Heavenly Father.

And you know what? Often times He calls us to do very difficult things. Things that are not possible by the natural person. Take for example Matthew chapter 5, verses 44 and 45. What does the Lord Jesus say? But to love your enemies. Bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven.

What is that? That is the power of God and the character of God flowing through the child of God. You see, this doesn't happen just because we choose to. This happens as an outflow of our walk with God and our communion with God. We have the Holy Spirit in us. The Holy Spirit has taken up residence within us.

He mentions that in verse 6. We do this by the Holy Spirit. His fruit and the fruit of the Holy Spirit, the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

These are abilities that the natural man does not have. But we who are in Christ have this resource. And we do it by the Holy Spirit, which means that we have a mind and a heart for God.

We do it by the Word of God and the Spirit of God. And I like what He says at the end of verse 7. By the armor of righteousness on the right hand and on the left, we are double armed on the right hand. You know, it just comes to mind a picture of the superhero with, you know, two big weapons like that, right? Well, you know, that's really not what He's talking about.

But we go to too many movies today, I understand, or read too many cartoons. But we are armed, we are equipped. But what are they? They are the Word of God and prayer. Ephesians 6, remember that?

Double armed on the right hand and on the left as the song that we commonly sing. And with the sword, that does what? Makes the wounded whole.

We will fight with faith and valor. You see, these are the resources that we have in God, which is what He is pointing out in verses 6 and 7. As beloved children of the Heavenly Father, because we have been reconciled to God. The fact that we are reconciled to God means that we can now be in relationship with God. And as we are walking with God, then the outflow of that is the character of God. Don't put the cart before the horse, okay? An apple tree is an apple tree because the apples grow out of the tree.

No one goes up to a tree and pins apples on it and calls it an apple tree. And so it is with the walk of faith. The good works that we do are an outflow of our vital connection with the source of life.

We don't do it just by putting it on. These are supernatural things that come from our walk with God. But also, another thing that I wanted to point out here, as we are ministers of God, as the beloved children of the Heavenly Father, it means this, we are family, Christians, we are family. You've been listening to Rich Powell, the lead pastor at Grace Bible Church in Winston-Salem. The Delight in Grace mission is to help you know that God designed you to realize your highest good and your deepest satisfaction in Him, the one who is infinitely good. We hope you'll join us again on Weekdays at 10 a.m.
Whisper: medium.en / 2024-06-12 12:09:07 / 2024-06-12 12:13:39 / 5

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