Grace

Romans 6:15-23 Know Consider Present - Jeff Coleman

Jeff addresses the problem of overcoming sin in our daily walk and the remedy provided in Romans Ch 6. We have to deal everyday with the temptation of whether to put the interest of ourselves before others. Now that we are saved from the penalty of sin, what do we do about the nagging problem of daily temptation and sin in our Christian life?

Rom 6:15-23 What God says to us about overcoming the temptation to sin in our daily Christian life.

Are we to sin? Sin leading to death or obedience leading to righteousness.

We have capacity of Knowing, Considering, and Presenting in battle of daily death to sin

Knowing is the first step in overcoming sin in our daily battle. Know about our identity in Christ

Know with our head.

Consider with your heart

Present with your hand.

Positionally, we have been set free from the old sin master. We have already won in Christ. Positionally, the sin master no longer has a rightful claim on your service.

1.       Know about your position in Christ when we believe. Knowing and counting it to be true is part of the victory we have in Christ.

2.       Consider, calculate, contemplate your identity and come to the right answer of who we really are in Christ. We are new creations in Christ. Considering our identity is the second step in overcoming sin.

3.       Stop presenting yourselves to sin but cut it off. Stop presenting your members to sin as tools for unrighteousness but present yourselves to God as one who has been brought from death to life.

It is still possible for a believer to present members of our body, our thoughts, our tongue, to sin. We struggle with this daily Instead, present ourselves to God as instruments of righteousness.

All people are slaves to whom they obey. We have a choice to make on a daily basis who we are going to serve. Practically we can serve the old master even though positionally we are slaves to righteousness.

We must bring our practice in line with our position.

There is no neutral position. "It may be the Devil or it may be the Lord but you are going to have to serve somebody" Dylan

If you think you are just on neutral ground then you are in practice serving Satan. You are just not aware of it. Matt 12:30

Standard/(form, pattern) of teaching, v 17. The doctrine of grace that Paul and the Apostles taught from. When we hear the gospel we are delivered over to grace and it frees us from the god of this age and gives us a firm foundation. It instructs us how to live, and shapes and mould who we are. Not moulded to the world but shaped by good doctrine and teaching.

Jonah 4: God who rescues - Simon S

Repentance of the whole city is more profound a miracle than the fish

Jonah knew God would be gracious and merciful and It displeased Jonah exceedingly. He was furious and angry. His worst fear for running away was that he did not want Ninevah to repent. Even if there was a chance of Ninevah repenting then he got as far away as possible. God might even care for these hated people

How could a good God allow such evil people to be forgiven? A God who was full of steadfast love. Ex 34:6 God relented from judging Israel after they made the golden calf.

The same God delivered the enemy of Israel. Spared from the judgment they deserved. Jonah is acting the complete opposite of the God he worshiped. Quick to anger, lacking in grace and mercy, no love for his neighbour and would rather see disaster strike his enemies.

Jonah says I know who you are. I know what you are like but why do you have to show it to them. Why show THEM mercy instead of justice? Why are you showing THEM redemption instead of punishment. Nineveh deserves judgement, not mercy for their evil and their wickedness.

There is offence in the prophet’s voice. Jonah’s hatred is literally killing him inside. Rather be dead than see Ninevah saved. Jonah literally cannot live with this. Fate worse than death. Jonah only a few days earlier prayed salvation belongs to the Lord and was rescued from certain death is now enraged by the sight of salvation and rescue from certain death being shown to his enemies. A hypocrite.

Gods response to Jonah’s cry, are you right to be angry..why do you resent God’s compassion on your enemies?

Jonah went to see what would happen to Ninevah? Maybe they would repent of their repentance? Then he would have been right and justified.

Jonah hangs around to see what happens next. 

Every character in the story so far has repented except Jonah. Jonah is the prophet and yet the furthest away from God. It is the prophet Jonah who needed to be rescued from his understanding to be God’s people. Grace and mercy to Gods people and judgment and wrath to his enemies.

God cares about a city. God shows Jonah how upside down his values are. Learn to show some love and compassion to the Ninevites. Should we be concerned about our city, way more than 120,000 people?

The story is saying something to you the reader. Satire. Humour, irony. All characters act in the opposite way to what you would expect.

When we read Jonah to day it challenges us in the way God loves his enemies. Does it make us more compassionate or angrier. Its easy to point the finger at Jonah, we judge ourselves. We are exceedingly happy when grace is shown to us but not when it is shown to our enemies. Our enemies are not worthy of Gods compassion.

We are the ones needing to be rescued. Who do we deem less valuable of God's love and compassion. God loves his enemies.

What is our attitude to our enemies outside these walls?

What does Jonah say about Jesus?
A gospel story. Both from Galillee, Both in the ground for 3 days and resurrected. Both sent on a rescue mission of salvation and life. Both preached to a great city. Both had something to say to about loving your enemies. Jesus took on judgement deserved by us. Jesus died that we might live.

Jonah is the story about the The God who rescues.

Jonah 3: God who forgives - David W

Jonah tried his best to run from the missionary task God had given him but when he finally confronted the Ninevite people with the warning of impending destruction the fearsome Ninevite people repented.

David asks us to consider where our Ninevah might be and were we fear to go and witness to God's love and grace. He also asks us to consider our own repentance and to turn back to God.

Where in the community are you representing Jesus and forming friendships with people to share the good news with them? We can also be Jonah's to our society and to call out evil and wickedness requiring repentance.

Jonah is a story of grace and repentance that resonates with the world's need today.

The Resurrection - 1 Cor 15 : Andrew S

As we contemplate Easter, the resurrection of Jesus Christ and His victory over death comes into focus.  Here in Ch 15, Paul lays out the logical argument for the resurrection and Andrew skillfully takes us through Paul's reasoning.

Rom 6:23 tells us that the wages of sin is death. Through a life of sin a wage is owed, and that debt is death.  If Christ died and did not rise again then we would conclude that Christ must have owed a debt. His death would have had to pay his own debt to sin so he couldn’t have paid debt of others. There would be no payment made so we are still our sin, and if we are still in our sin then there is no good news.

But it was not possible for death to hold Christ because he lead a sinless life and owed nothing to sin and therefore Christ can pay our debt. The resurrection of Christ demonstrates that the offering of Christ is effective in carrying away our sin.

Andrew finishes with two reflections on the impact of the resurrection on our life:
1. It changes our identity and heritage in that we no longer are connected to our forebears through the common inheritance that all men die. In the resurrection we become dead to sin and alive to God. Through our kinship in Christ we can daily seek grace from the Father to live a resurrected life.

2. It alters our future and destiny. Imperishable, glorious and powerful. Our destiny.  Death is swallowed up in victory. In a moment corruption becomes incorruptible. In a moment the struggle ends. We can endure. We can hold fast. it is the end of suffering but the beginning of all expansive joy and and thrill in heaven.

Lawsuits & Liberty - 1 Cor 6 : Simon S

Simon begins with observing that Paul letters are conversational. Written from real people to real people with real and troubling problems. 

Secondly, the letter is pastoral with a purpose of teaching and helping the people in the Corinthian church, faith in action, integrated with real life. Sometimes the message is hurtful but Paul’s motivation is his love for the brothers and sisters in Corinth. 

Thirdly, Paul’s message is theological and speaks about Jesus, the centre and foundation of the church, and that the problems that arise stem from people not building their lives around Jesus, or not fully understanding the message of the gospel. False theology underpins un-Godly living, and Paul corrects their false views and misconceptions by bringing the believers back to Christ, back to the cross. It is theology but its also theology in overalls, a knowledge of God that needs to be lived out. Not just wisdom kept in your head so that you can boast, but wisdom that moves from the head to the heart and bears fruit in Godly living.

Disputes
Paul tells the Corinthians that their disputes with each other are never more important than the message of the Gospel so why not suffer wrong for the sake of the Gospel? 

The Gospel is all about not getting what you deserve but instead receiving grace.

We risk our disputes over taking the Gospel of Christ. By walking away from the cross and instead toward the court room we have already lost.

Liberty

Love for each other takes precedence over liberty. True christian freedom is doing what is good and not just what is good for you but good for all. Live a life that enhances rather than exploits.

Life of David - Mephibosheth : Simon S

A wonderful picture of God's grace to while we were crippled by sin, unable to approach the King except through our relationship with the Lord Jesus, we are adopted as sons and daughters.