I did not go to church today because I didn’t believe I could sit comfortably for the service. I didn’t want to distract others with my battle against the pain in my back. I did however watch the service online. And, I took notes.
I find it interesting that Pastor Zach said that he had planned on a different message but was lead to the following instead. Sunday, January 9, 2022 the link to the video on youtube. I shared the link to the video due to my notes may be a bit disjointed at times.
The Letter of Jude’s Faith Fight; Today’s sermon, Becoming a Fighter for the Faith.
The message comes from Jude the next to the last book of the Bible, verses 1 and 2.
As Christians, we are called to a spiritual war. We are to contend for the faith. Contend being a battle word, a call to arms. Battling for the truths we are taught in the Bible. We are in a war, for the hearts and minds of people. Not over what is truth, for truth is truth, but of the coming to believe in that truth. Most people do not wish to have their mind changed.We as Christians, are called to make disciples.We will face a battle every day on whether we believe or not. Called to temptations of to believe other things. Whether we want to or not, it will play its way in our life.We are called together to be trained. Do we see the church as a battleship preparing for the war, or a cruise ship? Are we concerned over the battle of faith, or the decorations, the style, the dress? How, do we face the battle with confidence?
In his book, Jude offers us these truths. A moment to explain, who was Jude? He was not only a servant of Christ, he was the half brother of Jesus. Mark 6:v3 yet he did not use that to gain notoriety, but called himself a servant of Christ first and foremost.
There are two truths and realities that we who are in Christ need to understand. To have a new identity, we must come to Christ.
First, we are a servant of Christ. In the original writing, it reads, of Jesus Christ a servant. Placing Jesus first. Jesus, has absolute ownership. He is not just our Savior, He is mostly Lord. He has authority over all. Eventually, believe or not, God will assert that authority.
If we do not accept God’s authority and surrender to Him, we are surrendering to a different master. We are allowing our passions and selfishness control. We are surrendering to sin. Sin, is anything that is against God’s design. How to determine the essence of sin, does it go against God’s will and character? We will be either a servant to Christ or sin. Mark 3: 20-21 John 7: 3-5 Acts 1:14 Even the hardened can be transformed.
Those who are called by God, the called out ones, the beloved and kept. When we put our faith in God, we are kept and protected from the things that would tempt us. As God calls, He enables you. Apostle Paul is an example. One who imprisoned and killed Christians, called to share the message of Christ. Once we accept Christ, once we are saved, we cannot lose that salvation.
We are called to believe, to rely on Him, to follow Him. Those who do, are beloved of God. While God loves all He created, He loves those who respond greater. We who believe, are adopted into the family of God.
Even if you walk away from the Lord. You are still His. He will always bring you back to Him. When you walk in rebellion, He will bring you to a place of repentance. Even knowing that, do not allow yourself to become steeped in sin, thinking that at a later date you can turn back. That late date may not arrive. No, you will not lose your salvation, yet there will be consequences to the sins.
Two- Understand what we have in Christ. The relationship, who we are and what we have.
Mercy, our sins forgiven and paid for by Christ’s death and resurrection.
Peace with God. Romans 5:1 Phillipians 4: 6-7 Numbers 6: 24-26 Peace external, internal, eternal.
Love from God. Has been shown, will always be shown 1 John 4: 9-10
We are in a battle to understand what we have and seek to show others. We seek to love others in the hope they too will come to know and love God.
End of notes.
Now, here is what struck me. This morning I wrote a blog of how often I tend to go my own way, on my own strengths. https://rebeccasrevels.wordpress.com/2022/01/09/january-ninth-a-renewed-perspective-on-considering-lessons-learned/ I forget that as a Christian, life is not done on my strengths. That in truth, I am not the one who is in charge of the outcome of life. I tend to get priorities out of place and out of time. I know it was important that I hear the message this morning, so much so that I made sure not only to watch the live feed, but have my notebook handy. I needed to hear the reminder that what is important, is the understanding that God is with me always. Christ is with me always. That I do not need to attempt to go this life alone, fearing what may come. That I need not get myself in a hurry seeking answers or completely projects. Did God cause me to injure my back? No. I did that myself in my misguided determination. I think that we often think we are better, know better, can do better on our own. We don’t want to think or believe that an all powerful God should be in control of our thoughts and actions. But yet it is when we follow in the servitude, when we obey the call, we find the love we are meant to feel and share.