Grace Energized Men: God, Gifts, and God's Building Project
- Sunday, March 23, 2008
The God of the Universe is seeking something-God is looking for individuals who will worship Him. We were all born, alienated from God, by our sin. But Jesus Christ came to seek and save the lost by taking our place on the cross and paying the price for our sin.
The Good News of the Gospel is that Jesus did all that needs to be done to take away the penalty and power of our sin so that we can worship our Creator.
Open with me to Christ's words in John 4:22.
John 4:22-28 "You worship what you do not know; we know what we worship, for salvation is of the Jews. 23 "But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. 24 "God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth." 25 The woman said to Him, "I know that Messiah is coming" (who is called Christ). "When He comes, He will tell us all things." 26 Jesus said to her, "I who speak to you am He." NKJV
Today salvation is turning towards Christ in faith and away from sin. At the instant of salvation, as Jesus told this woman at the well, we become worshipers. But we have so many hindrances all around us to fully offering that worship that God the Father seeks from us. That is why we are studying edification. We need to be:
Now, turn with me to I Peter 2:4 and listen to what we all need today.
1 Peter 2:5 you also, as living stones, are being built up (there is our word "edified") a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
In order to offer worship as God desires, we all need to be a part of a lifelong building project that God has called the Church.
There have been some amazing building projects in history. Noah building the ark; the Pharaohs building the pyramids 500 years before Abraham; and Solomon building God's first temple a thousand years before Christ's Birth; Herod the Great building the Temple Mount of Christ's day; the Great Wall of China; and even recently the us governments interstate highway system...these all were monumental building projects.
But, the greatest construction project of all time has also been going on the longest. For 2000 years God has been building up Christ's church using gifted workers with a blend of seven skill sets to make holy temples out of living stones that are sending clouds of worship before God's Throne in heaven.
You have come to the greatest construction project on Earth. Christ's Church is God's massive building project. It stretches across our land and around the world and extends all the way up to the Sea of Glass surrounding God's Throne.
An old hymn used to remind believers of what God was doing to us through the church. The hymn was "O To Be Like Thee" and had one clear statement of edification when it says, "fitted for life and service above". Every day we need to be built up in our walk so that we can be better fitted for life and more prepared for the worship we offer now and will be offering forever above.
Down here we only see the construction, but up there we see the offerings of worshiping saints. Look with me at the finished product, what all of the edification or building up that we are to be each involved in doing, is for. Turn with me to I Peter 2 where Peter shows us the Church functioning as God sees us and desires us to serve.
1 Peter 2:4-10 Coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected indeed by men, but chosen by God and precious,5 you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.6 Therefore it is also contained in the Scripture, "Behold, I lay in Zion A chief cornerstone, elect, precious, And he who believes on Him will by no means be put to shame." 7 Therefore, to you who believe, He is precious; but to those who are disobedient, "The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone," 8 and "A stone of stumbling And a rock of offense." They stumble, being disobedient to the word, to which they also were appointed.9 But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light; 10 who once were not a people but are now the people of God, who had not obtained mercy but now have obtained mercy. NKJV
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