Our Position in Gods PlanBro. David Chancellor
9/28/2003 6:00 PM
God has a plan for everyone, and we want to fit into his plan.
1 Corinthians 13:1-3
Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal. And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing. And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor, and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.
What really matters where Gods plan is concerned? There were problems at Corinth. Everyone wanted to be something. Paul came at it from a different angle. He said, I am nothing. Men put emphasis in the wrong place by wanting to be something. They think its necessary to be big or special.
A man may be a great orator, but that wont be enough. Hitler was a great orator, but we dont look up to him. There are some who go to hear great speakers. Some even make a living by speaking. Without the love of God in the speech, its just entertainment. Religion could be the same way. The love of God is needed in the heart. This love translates to a love and a concern for mankind. This isnt spectator church. We come to worship God.
You could be a great speaker, and still not have anything to say. You might actually have something to say, and know something, but without charity, its still nothing. Without the love of God, theres no profit. It should produce something in the heart. If it goes no further than the head, youve missed out.
If you understood everything, without the love of God, its worthless. We enjoy learning new things from God, but we need the love of God in the heart.
Faith is important, but the love of God is still needed.
The issue is not what we are, but what God has put in us. You may be able to believe some things, but the important things is the presence of the love of God in the heart. A lot of people think theyre something when they are really nothing. Jesus brought it down to two things: 1) Love God with all you are and 2) Love your neighbor as yourself. This is only possible when you have Gods love in you.
There are two prevalent thoughts and approaches to religion today. You have the Stoics who make great sacrifices and then you have the Epicureans who have the philosophy of eat, drink and be merry, for tomorrow we die (a philosophy that Charismatics subscribe to). You can go either route, but without the love of Christ in you, it wont matter. The ultimate sacrifice without the love of God is worthless. For it to make a difference, it needs to be motivated by the love of God. You could be a martyr, and without the love of God, youre nothing. Something within is needed to make you what you ought to be. This is the love of God. Greatness is when God comes to dwell within and helps you to live, as he wants you to live.
Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.
Jesus points out what matters to God. He wants us to do what God intended. Religious people are abiding by the word of God but not by the will of God. Its not about technically being legal, but about doing the will of God. People will technically tell the truth, but be deceptive. Doing the will of God is what matters. This shows a religion based on works. They went their own way and didnt fit into the plan like God wanted them to. Its not about getting enough works saved up to get into heaven.
We need to live out Gods will. The only way to do this is to have the love of God in the heart. Get Gods presence dwelling in you. Something has to happen within for Gods will to be lived out. True success is found in humbling yourself before God. Salvation is a real deliverance from going our own way to going Gods way.
Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
Jesus emphasized to them their need of him. He was getting ready to go to the cross. When they saw him on the cross, it became obvious to them that they needed him. They had seen so much and became aware of their need. Jesus had to go away because they needed him in a way that they hadnt experienced yet. We need the Spirit of God abiding in the heart. Without this, well be a failure. If we would be a benefit to our fellowman, we need the Spirit of God. The love of God is shed abroad by the Spirit of God. Were totally dependent on God to be what hed have us to be.
For if a man think himself to be something, when he is nothing, he deceiveth himself.
If we think were something without the love of God, were deceived. We need to see our dependence on God. We need God every hour. Without God, were nothing. We need God to work his will and his purpose in us.