The photo of youth revival meeting in Kandhamal.
A. If you have been redeemed, accepted God's gift of salvation..."be risen with Christ."
1. To be risen with Christ is to be risen to eternal life.
2. It means we have true life. It points us to the Lord Jesus in Heaven and our waiting for the appointed day when He will come for us.
3. Note that Christ is standing by the right hand of God. It focuses on the fact of Christ watching inventively at what we are doing, not sitting, but standing in anticipation. Standing to guide and direct and empower us with all the power of God Himself.
B. Paul here is making a straight forward appeal. To those who have been saved and experienced the power of God in Salvation, become in life and experience what God has made you by His Grace.
1. What a passage this is to challenge us in this New Year. Live as God would have us too.
2. Accomplish that which He desires for us. Be found in his pure will.
C. To end up straight we must start straight and keep straight until the end. We have that opportunity before us.
1. We have a new day before us. God is the God of new beginnings.
2. Let us resolve to do better, and do our best for the Lord in this New Year He has given us.
3. Let's commit ourselves, to with God's help, be what He wants us to be. Let us turn from our sin and turn rather to God
4. We must all admit we failed in many ways last year, but that is no reason not to strive and move forward this year. We learn from our trials.
It is a fact that if we attempt nothing, we will be very successful and will accomplish nothing.
God has always used the man or woman who would have a vision of what God can do and believing that, strive to be victorious in the Lord.
Some would make little of resolutions and speak ill of making them. Remember, to end up straight you must start straight and keep straight. The start is vital to the ending. What athlete ever won the race by starting with an attitude of conceding to failure in the end? God’s will is clearly stated for all Christian men and women to keep on trying, and who never give up! Those that continue they win, the finish and they do so because of their resolve. I feel sorry for the man or woman who giving in to failure, or far worse the man who trudges on with his head down. I like a man who will shake his fist as trouble and keep on. The Christian however, sets his jaw and declares that God says “we are more than conquerors.” (Rom. 8::37) Therefore he admits he cannot win in his own strength so he makes the resolve to allow the Holy Spirit to guide and direct him and accomplish what he could not. Remember it God’s work. We are His servants and He will supply the need.
D. Set your affections on things above. God has given us the direction to go, He has set the course.
1. Thank God for the man or woman who is not satisfied with what they are and wants to be better for the Lord. To be a great tool used by the Lord.
2. Thank God for the Child of God who says, I hate every sin in my life, God forgive and help me to overcome every one. I despise my shabby habits, unfaithfulness, and apathy. Lord, help me to shake off my bad habits, cleanse me of lust, convict me of sin, remove it shackles from my heart and give me a pure and clean heart.
3. I thank God for every child of God that makes the commitment to be faithful to the Lord’s local church. Money, family, friends, inconvenience or apathy are not reckoned to be a reason to forsake the assembling of ourselves together. (Heb. 10:25)
E. Don't fail to start! It takes more power to start a car and get it moving than it does to keep it running.
When Carolyn and I first came to Utah we were driving an 81 Ford Escort. The alternator burned up somewhere pass Vernal and we were running on the battery. We almost panicked because there were no towns with a shop to fix it. We finally found a store that had a battery charger which was east of Dushane and with a charged batter we went on to Salt Lake. The car made it to Salt Lake City but the battery was so drained it would not start the car. We got it charged again and off we went to Wyoming to visit a friend. The point was clear it took little current to run the engine but a lot to start it.
A car uses less power running than starting. Cars too must start in low gear, after they start you change to a higher gear because the motion helps to keep it going. The car would not pull off in high gear.
1. A life in motion helps itself. If it is started right it is easier to go right.
2. For the lost man or woman, the start begins with believing and accepting God's only begotten Son as your personal Savior. That is not only the right start, it is the only right start. . . all others fail, and hell reaps the ruin that will always result.