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November 9, 2020 7:00 am
Church is an expression of that which binds the universal church. He goes on in verse 41581 spirit 101 war, one faith, one baptism, one God and father of always overall and through all the unity you will have the same personality particular is personified, but we have the same purpose and we follow the same person, no matter our backgrounds, histories or cultures. We have become one body we are brothers and sisters new creations bound together in unity through the Holy Spirit. So it's imperative that we protect and promote this unity in every local body today. Stephen Davey opens up Paul's letter to the Ephesians to share the ingredients the attitudes and behaviors. It takes to maintain genuine unity today working to see that the things that unite us and make us one far outweigh anything that could divide us. Welcome to wisdom for the heart.
Stephen Davey has a lesson for you today called how we get along fairly ingredients.
First one you need to mix into the recipe of genuine unity is humility. Verse two with all humility is going to start with the easiest one right with all humility like what Augustine the great theologian only fourth century was asked one of the three most important principles in a Christian's life and in the church. He said oh that's easy one. Humility number two humility number three humility so begin their you won't have unity without it.
Pohlad's next ingredient of gentleness notice in the text, gentleness or translation may render meekness when you hear the word meekness a translator that we know passes in the new test me think of you know, to mid wallflower doormats press no spy in to make a decision. Meekness we think of it as weak in the New Testament mind, meekness was not weakness.
It was incredible power under control that the word was used in Paul's day for warhorses. These stallions were called meet what it meant was that they were trained to respond to the warrior on its back that Jesus Christ is very interesting to hear him describe himself. He described himself that he records for us in chapter 11 verse 29. He said I am meek and humble of heart. I meek and humble of heart. To make this of Jesus Christ was demonstrated by the fact that he had all power he could retaliate.
He could get his way he could change everything from the weather to someone's response and he never had authority to do as he pleases for himself to suit himself to make his life more comfortable and he never served himself, Jesus Christ is the me of power under control this unity in the churches. Frankly, most often tied to the lack of this ingredient in suing determination to dig heals and have our way to display some kind of power some kind of perceived authority or influence you on unity. Stir in the ingredients of humility and gentleness. He has 1/3 ingredient in verse three.
Notice with patients showing forbearance to one another in love. That's another mouthful that decouples patients with forbearance forbearance refers to being patient with other people while being provoked to need another supplier is just saying they were supposed to be patient until we get out of the parking lot were to be patient with other people, so long as they're looking at us. This is) closing down every loophole is saying the patient but show forbearance.
This long-suffering with people in love. So when you're not treated like you think you want to be treated when people don't respond to you like they like using the auto responders. The question do you care more about the unity of the church or yourself. What matters more whatever the controversy arises whenever the confrontation occurs.
What matters most unity of the church or my own personal feelings like Pentecost is now the Lord will professors from Dallas seminary told of a church split that was so serious that each side in the argument, which had long been forgotten, both filed lawsuits in secular courts trying to dispossess the other side from the church property easily kick them out and then keep the property for themselves and they disregarded. Of course the biblical injunction not to take biblical matters or church matters, secular courts. Nonetheless, they did like Pentecost wrote that in the court proceedings as they both gave their arguments. It was it was eventually discovered as a TrackBack. This conflict to find out that the conflict it actually begun at a church. Why dinner and at that dinner. An older well-known member of the church was given a smaller slice of ham than the person next to and that started it all. Now it's one thing to show patience toward people with a bad attitude.
That's why he's tying up the loophole show patience toward people in the spirit of allowing its back to the question what's good for the body what's good for the church.
What's good for unity. We care enough to be slighted. We care enough to be overlooked. We keep our power under control or will we use it to hurt and provoke and respond in anything but love okay if you're like me, after just going through a couple of these ingredients are probably thinking I got some homework to do right. I have some stuff I need to address the many really given some some diligence and work harder at it. I think all ingredient like that's what he says next verse three being diligent to preserve the unity of the spirit in the bond of peace. Being diligent literally making every effort by the way, that word is the nuance of reading. I, like that don't you like to hurry to my own detriment may case domicile item is the elevator tackle.
He's using that same idea with urgency and haste and speed all this issue dome is the fact by the way here that nowhere does Paul tell us that we are the ones creating unity. You look again. Don't miss that. It doesn't say we create unity of the spirit and the bond of peace.
We don't create unity.
We can the spirit of God creates. We are just supposed to energetically and passionately and diligently preserve what he has created works hard at what the spirit of God is created get translated, make haste gardens make haste to maintain and make haste to keep it suitable on the local church is to make up your mind that you're really not as important as other people. Part of your not as important as other people you're effectively following the commands of the apostle and more promising each other that will be the kind of person to protect and preserve and promote the unity of the body, instead of being quick to divide, quick to gossip quick to take sides will be quick and eager to hasten toward resolution so if somebody involves viewing the controversy they just invited somebody is going to make haste to resolve it.
Donald Ray Barnhouse, my favorite authors know the Lord and therefore a number of years. Pastor Tim Presbyterian in Philadelphia and he included one of his commentaries missionary statesman who ransacked the New Testament and he indeed collected a list of things that this unify and divide the body and things that unify the body and he listed them and I've put them in my notes in a Marine them in there, read so many of them so quickly.
You can write them down is 33 of these things that this unify the body just was there we go this this unifies and divides the body self-seeking. A proud spirit playing God. Hypocrisy failing to appreciate others gives lack of patience not sympathizing with others who have challenges evil speaking, assuming without grounds that others are at fault. Suspecting the motives of another domineering spirit, a rebellious spirit, snobbery, hatred, grumbling, arguing, murmuring, maliciousness being nosy or that is in the Bible, but some of greediness, bitterness, resentment, instability, timidity, spite, laziness, freeloading, lying, slander, jealousy, thinking too highly of oneself having a critical spirit encouraging controversy. 33 ways to chip away at the unity of the body. These are all things mentioned in the New Testament, the same individual went to the New Testament and made a list of activities that unify the church. There we go. Willingness to be in subjection to others considering others better than ourselves. Having an understanding spirit. A close walk with Christ, not insisting on our rights willingness to confess a wrong spirit, sincerity, generosity, hospitality, a sympathetic spirit trusting others having expectation in Christ not in others, joyfulness, prayer, tactful caution, critical spirit toward one's own self Christ centeredness love in word and action fair and honest dealing with others. Integrity recognizing your place in the body is the assignment of God, a forgiving spirit avoiding arguments over confusing issues refusing any kind of disorderly conduct, conscientiousness, faithfulness, being responsible, to perform your service assignment not misusing authority over others. Being willing to follow those in authority over a gentle and quiet spirit, humility, using our gifts for one another's benefit remembering our own mistakes and forgetting the mistakes of others. Okay, you heard that you're probably thinking whoops whoops whoops whoops whoops oops. This is the challenge from the first century to the 21st century will we with haste repair these issues. If the spirit creates the unity of the body.
Will we care to preserve it will obviously need to walk in the spirit were obviously going to need to be willing and sensitive for that.
Not seeing the turn that way that not that way. Go forward, stop does that look like you I just prop my feet up on my desk and I worked on a list, I think, among other things, I didn't come with a long, but what that means is in here in this body and this assembly in this local church. The white collar will associate with the blue-collar, the Mexican will get along with the Puerto Rican. The Chinese will serve the Taiwanese.
The white man will share in ministry with the black man, the doctor and the mechanic will share the same hymnal.
The homeschooler in the public school teacher will care about each other. The businesswoman will invite mother of five to share a cup coffee. The old man will delight in the company of young men. The single adult will encourage and appreciate the marriage conference. The empty-nesters will help serve our children the PhD or will be taught in his ABF by a guy who dropped out of college. The well-known will live to fellowship with the unknown and the list could go Paul says do you want to pursue that by which you should be identified. You're calling and you're walking a local church demonstrates that which binds, by the way, the universal church. The local church is an expression of that which binds the universal church. He goes on in verse for one body, one spirit, one hello one more one faith, one baptism, one God and father of always overall and through all of it.
All unity here that one. Why one why we all have the same personality particularities personified, but we have the same purpose and we all follow the same person.
Our chief Shepherd is Jesus Christ, who were not gathered in here because we share the same kinds of lives are here because we share in the same life was Christ. The only way will ever maintain this course is to mix these ingredients. Our unity with these true the former unity binds together one spirit, one hope, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and father, who is over all of us effectively living in Austin through a silver surrendered to Christ and at the daily surrender were sensitive to the nudging of the spirit of God within us, and his clear word and that's daily. Our youngest daughter moved into an apartment some time ago. The last of our four children and with her when our last dog pixie. She wanted to keep pixie when she moved in. We said yes please be wonderful. One of the problems with pixie is that she doesn't bark she doesn't bark she howls she has this lamenting piercing howl like a siren. I did miss it but evidently people in the apartment complex began to complain early on because whatever chair to go to work. Evidently pixie with how all day long so cheerily and to start bringing pixie over to our house before going to work. She tried everything she she did.
She really didn't know what to do with pixie.
I suggested death, teasing no dogs died in the story okay either.
Unfortunately, but no dogs that she read about this special collar that delivers a light shock when the dog barks and we were so desperate with so maybe we'll do a we ordered it and she had the dog in my study got the collar and it was amazing. It worked within two or three minutes it worked miraculously felt the same way. It's amazing what technology can solve these days might my neighbor in our in our neighborhood noticed him over the last 6 to 8 months saw as I drove by purchase the golden retriever beautiful little puppy and Kristi a little postage stamp lawns unit with a golden retriever and that dog grew and then the next thing I knew was much fully grown, and here came those white flags down the street and are talking about Barry that underground fence and put that collar on his dog and I could see them out there with a leash note taking that dog up close to that line. Of course I knew what was happening that collar was beginning to be beat beat beat beat beat beat beat beat begin to get too close across line with the liberal shock Dogwood retreat and connect the dots between those white flags and that beeping and in pain. It reminded me as I would drive by, chuckling to myself about is about 15 years ago. Oh, one of the kids in our neighborhood little boys in the cul-de-sac there arrived on our porch and rang the doorbell and I answered it in the head in his hands a little basset hound puppy that needed a home now.
We arty have patches who would have pixie. We didn't need another dog but in a moment of insanity. I said yes. We named him Murphy and that Bassett grew a like a weed. We knew finally had to do something and so we went and got the kit and buried that table in the backyard and put those white flags but I went out the train. Murphy and I I'd bring them toward that line and I could hear that collar beep, beep, beep, beep, beep, beep, beep. The little shocking that he retrieved and and I thought this dog's gonna going to get.
You can set the shock level. It different levels goes ahead on the lowest level effort patches are female. We did the same thing and it worked wonderfully well for Murphy. He just couldn't get it.
He couldn't connect the dots between pain and don't do that and if he saw another dog or an animal or a jogger. I could see him he'd take off he'd run toward that line. I watched them do it time and time again he'd run, he wouldn't even slow down.
He just as he crossed over the line go after my get his Lazar Dragon back over the line backyard, nothing more. I finally decided to set power at the highest level and at the same powers and electric chair like the lights in the neighborhood would do when Murphy crossed the line, which was regular regular return to make any difference.
I finally figured out Murphy is not. It wasn't. He just didn't care.
He didn't care.
He would rather chase what he wanted. Even if it hurt.
You know all this technology and I was riding with pixie in this hurt her collar would be great if every Christian had a collar by meeting attempted are or how much somebody in an insurance right there. Every member of the church to join you get a collar on. These are things pastors dream of. Okay, just to let you know when to be great to have a tablet collar that warns you. You know you're getting close to the line and it would start to be the be BBB but know I shouldn't do that I shouldn't go there.
I shouldn't say that I should be great if we were given something. So whenever we thought of causing pain or discouragement or division it would start to be. Paul writes in verse seven he says this, but to each one of us grace was given, we been given grace according to the measure of Christ's gift. But often we we do know better. We do hear the beeping spirit of God for the grace of God. Isn't that where Dom isn't that we don't connect the dots issues would rather chase Paul was saying here if you ever going to have unity in the church body is to take people listening and responding. If I go over to verse 29, he, summarizes what this will close but he says in verse 29 let let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification is the building up of another believer according to the need of the moment and note that it may give grace to those who hear.
Don't grieve the Holy Spirit is going to ignore his nudging verse 31 let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along the long mouse to do knows that what is that mean they're doing it doing a bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor and slander malice.
Instead, verse 32. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you. That's that's the measure of his grace to you in the point includes this God has given each of us the spirit of God with Moses and enough grace he's lavished upon us were able to turn around and give grace to each problems person won't perfected going to pursue that were going to submit humility to one another, striving peaceful unity and harmony. Realize that unity in our congregation brings great honor to God. It's a powerful witness to the world.
When Christians live in love and harmony with each other. Our culture is often divided and torn and interactions are often filled with animosity. As Christians we should stand out for our unity but it's not always easy is it.
I hope that this reminder from God's word has encouraged and challenged you today. You're listening to wisdom for the hearts with Stephen Davey, would you like to hear this lesson again.
Or maybe share it with a friend who could benefit from hearing it with posted it to our website and you can go there and listen or share the link with a friend. The website is firstname.lastname@example.org the series were currently working through was called upon this rock.
In today's lesson is entitled how we get along will be continuing through this series. All this week as we wrap up this important series on the church before this week gets too far away from us. I want to mention a resource that might help you especially if you're a pastor, Elder Deacon or church leader Stephen preach this series when the church he pastors was expanding and clarifying its doctrinal statement wanted to add the biblical teaching on issues such as abortion, human sexuality, gender relationships, divorce and remarriage and more if it would help you or your church to have a copy: ask Stevens church has given us a few copies of that document and we can send you if you call us at 86 648 Bible 866-482-4253. Call today and then tune in tomorrow for more wisdom