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Set Apart 2 - The Pursuit of Purity

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Set Apart for Kingdom Living 2 - The Pursuit of Purity; nv 4/29/07 am

OS: Is more really better? When his friend got the super-sized at MacDonald’s. He said, "Do you realize that Big Mac alone is about 85% of your daily fat allowance?" he said, "How do you know what I allow myself daily? We're just getting started here!"

I.       Chasing Stuff – Convinced that more = better = happier

A.     Every 7 seconds you're given the message that your life is valued, (measured) based on your stuff.

B.     By the age of 20 a person has seen over a million commercials, and they're designed to say to you that you're not fulfilled yet, you're not content, your life doesn't have what it needs but you could have it.

                       1.       Maybe that's why 92 percent of us in the room are in some trouble financially and 65 percent of us, if the stats are right, are in serious trouble.

C.     For us, our basic needs seem to keep growing, don't they?

                       1.       It wasn't long ago that an average drink size at a convenience store, was 20 ounces, and 20 ounces seemed to be okay for us. - 1980, 7-Eleven introduced their Big Gulp, the 32-ounce drink. Now the most popular - 64 ounces! Your bladder can only hold about 16 ounces of liquid. What do you do with the rest?

                       2.       We drive bigger cars today. SUV's used to be a luxury or a novelty, and now they're a "necessity." I just read not long ago that 92% in America are never driven off the pavement. What's the point?

                       3.       In restaurants in the mid-'90s, the average plate size was 10-1/2 inches and today it's 12-1/2 inches. They're now introducing 15-inch plates because we are super-sizing everything.

                       4.       Homes today are 55% larger than they were in the mid-'70s. TVs’ are measured in feet today. We used to be content with one TV and now we have one in every room—even our shower!

                       5.       (A study) 6 billion people who lived on the planet consumed goods the ways Americans consume goods, it would take 4 planets our size to provide the resources. Are we ever satisfied?

D.     1 (The Human Struggle – not just our culture – no excuses!) Ecclesiastes 5:10-12 – 2 12:13-14

II.    3 Jesus takes us a step further as He paints this picture of what those of His Kingdom look like.

A.     Last week:: The Pursuit of Poverty (dependence on God – power under control)

B.     :1 Peter 3:15, In your hearts set apart Christ as Lord… Jesus on the throne of your heart. (Purity)

C.     4 Today: The Pursuit of Purity – 5 Matthew 5:6 & 8

I.       6 We all have at least one thing in common: We all hunger and thirst for the same things.

A.     What do we really need? What are we really after?

                       1.       Robert Tuttle, Can We Talk; People the world over have four needs that don’t change. He calls them the “Universal Spiritual Laws of Cross Culture.”

a.    Everyone needs to measure up to some kind of law.

b.    We all have an innate need to understand our origins.

c.    Need to overcome temptation.

d.    We all have a need for community.   

                       2.       Tom Clegg states in his book, Lost in America, “People come to earth with three fundamental needs—transcendence, significance and community” (p. 43).   

                       3.       Man needs difficulties; they are necessary for health.   

                       4.       We have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  “I just want to have fun”

B.     Our basic needs are the same: Significance, meaning, purpose,  We need to count.

                       1.       Something on our tombstone other than: I told you I was sick.

TS] Just as we have at least one thing in common, we are unique in another way…

II.    7 All of us do not seek to fill these needs from the same source.

A.     If you hunger and thirst after the world you will not be satisfied.

                       1.       The world cannot satisfy! ( 8 9 10 Luke 12:16-24)

                       2.       Sin’s temptation is “I can fill that need” – It is a lie! (Popularity = Significance – LIE! = a series of bad choices that end in everything from addictions, broken hearts, and death).

                       3.       Hunger and thirst after righteousness and you will be satisfied!

B.     11 Matthew 6:33  But seek first (Purity – 1 per throne) his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.

                       1.       God will provide what you need – Treasure/heart

TS] Fulfillment from the right source leads to purity.

III.  12 Fulfillment in life comes from seeking God first. Only then are we pure in heart.

A.     When we seek the world the lens of life gets cloudy, contaminated, like murky water. (Purity)

                       1.       The further we are from the light the more difficult it is to see! We “Think” we are heading in the right direction but we are not!

B.     13 Philippians 4:11-13 ( 14 Content with stuff / not with purity)

TS] So, how do I get this purity, and overcome the pull of the world?

IV.   15 Take time to purify your hearts, and then see God rather than running after other things.

A.     Jesus in the wilderness 40 days preparing for Ministry. (how many could He have healed?)

                       1.       Daily time with God. (doctor illu – how many were in Jesus’ waiting room – touch – free!)

B.     Jesus’ prep (His Purity was tested against the world’s basics – the same things we struggle with today – the cravings of sinful man, the lust of his eyes and the boasting of what he has and does…1 Jn 2:15).

                       1.       God has promised you won’t starve. He is going to meet your needs. He never promised to meet your wants or your luxuries, but He will meet your needs. And the greatest need you possess is to have a relationship with Him.   

                       2.       16 Hunger and Thirst for Righteousness – Purity – you will see God.

C.     A small boy who was very fond of his father loved to join him wherever he went. One day while his dad was engaged in intensive study, the youngster tapped at his office door. "Well, my little man, what do you want now?" "Nothing, Daddy, I just want to be near you," the boy said.  Receiving permission to come in, the boy made his way to a far corner of the room and sat quietly for a long time. He was content just to be alone with his father. I wonder, is this the kind of love we have toward God?

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