December 8, 2019
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Abiding in Christ in Relationships
Within the walls of the church, there appears to be a expanding mindset of individualistic self-preoccupation. Though instinctive to our culture, the consumeristic mindset has now worked its way into the church. Unfortunately, and equally important, this mindset has also impacted relationships inside and outside the church. Too often, church and relationships become centers for selfies at the expense of others, while the driving concern within relationships is love and passion for exalting self and protecting its emotional identity. Destructively, many believers have viewed their identity by the temporal rather than the eternal. The thought of magnifying and expanding the exaltation of Christ as the source of relationships has become blasé. So what should relationships be built on?
The Scriptures identify many effective and ineffective relationships with opposing outcomes. But, in the actual prayer of Jesus for His disciples (17:6-19) and then for the future believers (17:20-26), he identifies the basis and the ultimate goal for relationships.
The strength for relationships:
I. The central source for relationships – John 17:20; 10:16; 11:52
II. The characteristic safeguard for relationships – John 17:21-23, 11; 2 John 10
III. The confident security for relationships – John 17:24-26
Thought to Ponder:
1. The strength of our relationships cannot be anchored in human potential but in the union of God the Father and the Son Jesus Christ.
2. The focus of our relationships must first be inwardly toward Christ and then outwardly toward others.
3. The glory exhibited in our relationships cannot be narrow-mindedly selfish but as broad as Christ’s glory to the world.