Faithlife Sermons

It's Not a Do-Over... It's a Do-Now

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Romans 10:
Romans 10:17 ESV
So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.
Seniors, my prayer this week has been that your hearts would be convicted and that this morning wouldn’t be just a time where you were recognized but a time where God moves mightily in your life. Because, like all of us in here, we need never need to come to the conclusion— we’ve made it. You’ve been on a path… right or wrong path I don’t know… but it’s been a path. Now you have a monumental time in your life that is a designated fork in the road where you must choose what path you’ll take for the next season of your life. My hope is this morning will be a catalyst that sets you on the path of a passionate pursuit of Jesus.
And church this is for all of us. Everyone of us in this place right now needs to recognize that this is a moment God has ordained for you to sit under the preaching of His Word… God has you here in this moment for a distinct purpose. This is not by chance that you woke up and wrestled yourself and perhaps your family here today. God is not looking at our attendance sheet and putting a check by your name and saying, “Yep, he’s good this week. Made it to church.” Turning around high-fiving whoever. You being here means nothing if your heart has no desire to receive truth and be changed by it.
So, saying all that… I need you to do a little mental exercise with me. I would like for everyone to join us in this. It’s something that I did myself late Wednesday night laying on my couch. To be perfectly honest and transparent… I was fighting it because it was too hard to think about, but I believe God had an amazing purpose in it for my own spiritual life and for us together this morning.
So, saying all that… I need you to do a little mental exercise with me. It’s something that I did myself late Wednesday night laying on my couch. To be perfectly honest and transparent… I was fighting it because it was too hard to think about, but I believe God had an amazing purpose in it for my own spiritual life and for us together this morning.
I want you to think about your life up until this point. Go as far back as you want and allow those memories to roll through your head. Think about the years of your life and what you’ve spent time, resources, money, energy and emotions on. And ask yourself this question— Is it what you want for the years you have left?
Let me explain where I’m going with this— Wednesday, I had took our Dominican friends to have lunch with Pastor Ryan Johnson and the two guys that serve on staff with him— Phillip Weems and Tanner Ethridge. There in a rare situation that both of those guys were raised in Abbeville. And Fernando was asking how all of us were connected. So we all started talking about growing up and playing sports and just how there was a loose connection but nothing strong in high school beause of the age gap and how our friendships really deepened afterwards. Ryan always jokes around calling me the Abbeville legend and takes my minimal athletic accomplishments and blows them way out of proportion. And then he said, “They are even talking about naming the new locker room they’re building after him.”
It was a joke, but I had to catch myself because before I knew it tears started rolling in my eyes as a flood of memories came in about how many lives I lead astray in that locker room. My heart sunk as I thought about the gifts God had given me and the opportunities to be light and salt in an environment that desperately needed an example of a heart captured by the Gospel and I blew it! Because of social pressures… because of desires to satisfy my flesh above all else I lead people not too but away from Christ and many of their lives still haven’t recovered because my hypocrisy that preached your life’s actions do not matter as long as you call yourself a Christian. And I can ride through that town today and see people so far away from Christ… and they may have ended up that anyway… the point is I did nothing to help. And I knew the truth.
So seniors as you sit and think about the last 4,5,6 years of your life and you think about all of the missed opportunities, all the sin, all the selfishness, all the immaturity, all of the entitlement, all of the lust, and all of the self-worship all the while knowing the truth… I know your parents, the Gospel has not been shielded from you. Think about these past years and know this--
You do not get a do-over but because of the grace of the Gospel you get a do-now.
You can take every sin and every lost moment, lay it at the feet of Jesus and be forgiven… TOTALLY and do-now what you should have should have been doing all along.
Parents, one of the most heart-wrenching moments of my ministry is seeing a dad walk the aisle at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Knoxville, TN and break down because he didn’t get a do-over with his children. But praise be to Jesus— He gets a do-now.
Christian, you may have memories of all the vain pursuits that you thought whole-heartedly would make you happy. I read this week— “Idolatry is the foolishness in believing the gift can become the giver.” And you think back and can recognize that that’s you. You’ve spent a large portion of your life looking at stuff to fill the void and the emptiness. You wanted the gifts to give you only what God can give. You don’t get a do-over with all that time, money, emotional investments. You get a do-now though… because Jesus is good and gracious.
I’m calling you seniors, you parents, you retirees, you children, you singles, you teenagers, you men and you women--
So if this is a new path you want to take, if you can humble yourself and say yes to the truth that I have and still do waste most of my opportunities to live for Jesus. That a large part of me sees Him only as a ticket to Heaven and church as a necessary attachment to my life that gives some credence… some validity to my claim in being Christian. I’m calling you seniors, you parents, you retirees, you children, you singles, you teenagers, you men and you women--
Listen to the wisdom of the Apostle Paul
Philippians 3:13–14 ESV
Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:
Philippians 3:7–11 ESV
But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith— that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.
Philippians 3:7-
and forget what lies behind… Don’t be crippled by the pain of no do-over and strain forward to what lies ahead embracing the Gospel rich path of God’s grace... and do now!
This is Paul’s “do-now” life. If we read a few verses further, we’d see him say--
and forget what lies behind… Don’t be crippled by the pain of no do-over and strain forward to what lies ahead embracing the Gospel rich path of God’s grace... and do now!
Philippians 3:13 ESV
Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead,
Philippians 3:
We cannot be crippled by the shame of our past and the regret of no do-over. We must embrace the Gospel-rich path that calls us to do-now.
So, what I want to do is take these verses and make them our own profession--- our own proclamation. No matter what path you’ve traveled, at today’s fork in your journey you can begin living life new at this moment praise be to God!
Paul’s do-now life--
Understand when it comes to the Gospel, Loss is Gain (verse 7)
Paul holds a significant lists of accomplishments as an intensely religious person. But something significant happened when he met Jesus. He took all those gains… all those accomplishments wrote them down and held them up to the holy light of God’s standard for good and found himself wanting!! It wasn’t enough… with everything he had done in his religious life he was still bankrupt.
But Jesus came in with His precious blood and showing Paul that he did what Paul couldn’t do. And Paul takes this list and he weighed it in the balance with the work of Christ counting all his accomplishments as loss for the sake of Christ.
Luke 17:29–33 ESV
but on the day when Lot went out from Sodom, fire and sulfur rained from heaven and destroyed them all— so will it be on the day when the Son of Man is revealed. On that day, let the one who is on the housetop, with his goods in the house, not come down to take them away, and likewise let the one who is in the field not turn back. Remember Lot’s wife. Whoever seeks to preserve his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life will keep it.
Luke 1729-33
Do not believe having your name on a church membership role is synonomous with it being written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.
Paul’s do-now life
Beholds the Worth of Christ and aims to truly know Him(verses 8-9)
If you are ever around kids you know that they can look at you the whole time you’re talking and never catch hold of one word you say. Beholding something demands that you give undivided attention too.
If you are ever around kids you know that they can look at you the whole time you’re talking and never catch hold of one word you say. Beholding something demands that you give undivided attention too.
One of the greatest evidences of spiritually bankrupt Christianity is our ability to look at Jesus and never really see Him.
Church what we behold is what we will become. What’s happened in many of our lives is that we’ve forgotten exactly what we were saved out from and saved too.
VERSE 1 What love could remember no wrongs we have done Omniscient, all knowing, He counts not their sum Thrown into a sea without bottom or shore Our sins they are many, His mercy is more
VERSE 2 What patience would wait as we constantly roam What Father, so tender, is calling us home He welcomes the weakest, the vilest, the poor Our sins they are many, His mercy is more
VERSE 3 What riches of kindness he lavished on us His blood was the payment, His life was the cost We stood 'neath a debt we could never afford Our sins they are many, His mercy is more
Praise the Lord His mercy is more Stronger than darkness, new every morn Our sins they are many, His mercy is more
This is what it means to truly know Him… but far too often we sacrifice knowing Him this way because We have became slaves to attendance and all but abandoned teaching difficult truths is fear of people going somewhere else. We market Jesus as a self-help product and make Him as palatable as possible. And this is about as anti-great commission as it gets.
Paul’s do-now life
Jesus’ goal wasn’t to be an acquaintance, but Lord and Savior.
Is to Know
Is to know Him not just about Him
So to know Him in an in depth way requires we talk about bad news to understand the weight of good news.
That’s the issue we find in … ***EXPLAIN***
We have became slaves to attendance so we’ve abandoned teaching difficult truths is fear of people going somewhere else. We market Jesus as a self-help product and make Him as palatable as possible. And this is about as anti-great commission as it gets.
“Men must be made to feel that there is something the matter before they can be brought to see the necessity of a Saviour.”— Dr. Len G. Broughton
Paul’s do-now life
Believe
In , Paul and Silas are in prison because they cast an evil spirit out of fortune teller that some guys were getting rich off of. It’s a terribly unfair moment because this was not something they initiated. The woman kept following shouting about who they were. Paul got annoyed and cast the demon out.
Now they are in prison, praying and singing hymns and a miracle of divine intervention goes down. The chains fall off and they’re free. The jailor flips out and when he sees they haven’t left, he falls to his knees and asks, “What must I do to be saved?” They’re response--
Acts 16:31 ESV
And they said, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household.”
This is an aorist imperative meaning it calls for a SPECIFIC, DEFINITIVE, DECISIVE choice… Do this now!! Believe Now!
Experiences the practical power of the resurrection (verses 10-11)
To believe is to consider something to be true therefore being worthy of your trust.
Here’s the problem I see with many of us today--- we feel good as long as there is attendance and good morals and we have all but abandoned the biblical call to believe in the Lord Jesus Christ. The membership role of Bethlehem Baptist Church is not synonomous with the Lamb’s book of life. We cannot put enough emphasis here in this moment on this point… Believe!
2. Repent
In Peter preaches his second sermon after a lame man is healed and all these people walk up marveling at the miracle. Peter gets super confrontational and asks why are they marveling as if Peter and John had some type of super-human power? It wasn’t them but it was by faith in the Name of Jesus Christ, whom they turned over to Pilate... AFTER Pilate was ready to release Him… and killed Him. Peter’s word to them was--
Acts 3:19 ESV
Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out,
Mark 16:15 ESV
And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.
Why did Peter approach this incredible opportunity this way? Because many of the modern day church practices says this is nuts. We are supposed to market Jesus… We are supposed to make Him palatable. The problem is Jesus’ example. He had a massive crowd that was seeking Him for all the wrong reasons so He looks at them and says, “Unless you eat my flesh and drink my blood you can have no part in my Kingdom.” The disciples start panicking as everyone leaves and beg Jesus to explain Himself that He really didn’t mean that literally. Jesus asks are you going to leave too? Peter says
John 6:68 ESV
Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life,
Paul’s great desire is to live as someone who is spiritually alive amongst the spiritually dead
John 6:
Peter had repented. His life was turned from His own ways and all He had was Jesus. We’ve convinced ourselves attenders are the goal instead of conversions so in fear of losing people we don’t confront sin but stroke them where they are giving them no need to repent.
“Men must be made to feel that there is something the matter before they can be brought to see the necessity of a Saviour.”— Dr. Len G. Broughton
3. Behold
Isaiah 25:9 ESV
It will be said on that day, “Behold, this is our God; we have waited for him, that he might save us. This is the Lord; we have waited for him; let us be glad and rejoice in his salvation.”
If you are ever around kids you know that they can look at you the whole time you’re talking and never catch hold of one word you say. Beholding something demands that you give undivided attention too.
One of the greatest evidences of spiritually bankrupt Christianity is our ability to look at Jesus and never really see Him.
Matthew 4:17 ESV
From that time Jesus began to preach, saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”
Church what we behold is what we will become. You cannot change what’s held your gaze in the past but you can choose today what you will give undivided attention too.
Luke 10:27 ESV
And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.”
Joshua 24:15 ESV
And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the Lord, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
4. Love
Luke 10:27 ESV
And he answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind, and your neighbor as yourself.”
2 Timothy 2:22 ESV
So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.
5. Go and Proclaim
Mark 16:15 ESV
And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.
6. Flee
2 Timothy 2:22 ESV
So flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace, along with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart.
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