Faithlife Sermons

The Priority of Purity

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Introduction:

Leviticus 20:26 NASB95
26 ‘Thus you are to be holy to Me, for I the Lord am holy; and I have set you apart from the peoples to be Mine.
1 Peter 1:16 NASB95
16 because it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”
Matthew 5:48 NASB95
48 “Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.
What is God asking for in these verses? These are commands from God.
1 Thessalonians 4:1–8 NASB95
1 Finally then, brethren, we request and exhort you in the Lord Jesus, that as you received from us instruction as to how you ought to walk and please God (just as you actually do walk), that you excel still more. 2 For you know what commandments we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus. 3 For this is the will of God, your sanctification; that is, that you abstain from sexual immorality; 4 that each of you know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor, 5 not in lustful passion, like the Gentiles who do not know God; 6 and that no man transgress and defraud his brother in the matter because the Lord is the avenger in all these things, just as we also told you before and solemnly warned you. 7 For God has not called us for the purpose of impurity, but in sanctification. 8 So, he who rejects this is not rejecting man but the God who gives His Holy Spirit to you.
- Additionally then, brothers and sisters, we ask and encourage you in the Lord Jesus, that as you have received instruction from us on how you should live and please God—as you are doing—do this even more…CSB
-(v.1) Paul starts off with an encouragement: It seems as if the Thesslonican believers wanted more specificity about how to live this lifestyle. Paul starts by encouraging them about their obedience to what they already know about the Christian life, and then he finishes the text with a challenge to rise even higher.
-(v.2) Obviously there had been some previous communication with these believers because Paul says “For you know what commandments we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus” Paul is extolling them on their obedience to what has already been shown to them.
Four Principles of Purity
-Abstain from Sexual Immorality
-(v.3) “For this is the will of God” now this is an interesting phrase by Paul this phrase sounds like an answer to a question being asked by the Thessolinican believers. Remember this is letter. Paul wrote letters to respond to challenges, concerns, settle dispute, and to encourage churches.
-If seems as if the Thessolinican wanted more revelation from God about how to live this life. Essentially when we ask for the will of God, we are asking for more revelation from God.
What does Paul give them for specificity? your sanctification
What does that word Sanctification mean? I will give you two words:
a. Consecration-it has to do with separateness....Consecration
b. Clean-it also has to do with purity. .....Clean
The best way to understand this word is to remember back to your grandmothers living room.
-Her living room was both Consecrated(Separate) we only sat in their if everyone was dressed up for Easter or something
-Her living room stayed clean
-Now Grandma’s room did not stay clean on it’s own. Other rooms in the house got a little more dirtier but not the living room. If you left shoes in there she would immediately come tell you to put your shoes up somewhere else. Don’t leave your shoes in my living room.
-In this case Paul is not talking about a living room he is talking about your life.
-Like Grandma living room Paul is saying that it is the will of God, that you constantly & intentionally maintain the purity of your life. Don’t just leave things all over the place. Make sure things are in order.
-(v.3) Then Paul offers more specificity: “that is, that you abstain from sexual immorality”
-Abstain or Keep-that verb is in the present-which means this is not a onetime thing but a lifetime commitment.
What did Paul say we ought to avoid? Sexual Immorality
-It means to stay away from everything related to sexual immorality as well.
Meditate on this question: How many people/families has this sin of sexual immorality affected???
Control your vessel
1 Thessalonians 4:4 NASB95
4 that each of you know how to possess his own vessel in sanctification and honor,
-That word “vessel” could mean body or wife. The context determines the definition. Based on that premise:
What does the word vessel mean?
What does it mean to possess your own vessel?
Tell me some areas besides sexual sins that our bodies need to be controlled:
-Gluttony
-Laziness-sin of the mind
-Mouths(Profanity)
-Temper
-Vanity
-Our Dress
-Abuse of Medication
-Abuse of Alcohol
Subdue your Passion
1 Thessalonians 4:5 NASB95
5 not in lustful passion, like the Gentiles who do not know God;
What does it mean to subdue something? overcome or bring under control
When Paul says we ought not live like the Gentiles what was he saying? They live without restraint
ˈhēdəˌnizəm,ˈhedənˌizəm/ noun the pursuit of pleasure; sensual self-indulgence. synonyms:self-indulgence, pleasure-seeking, self-gratification, lotus-eating, sybaritism; More the ethical theory that pleasure (in the sense of the satisfaction of desires) is the highest good and proper aim of human life.
he·don·ism
ˈhēdəˌnizəm,ˈhedənˌizəm/ noun the pursuit of pleasure; sensual self-indulgence. synonyms:self-indulgence, pleasure-seeking, self-gratification, lotus-eating, sybaritism; More the ethical theory that pleasure (in the sense of the satisfaction of desires) is the highest good and proper aim of human life.
Treat others fairly
1 Thessalonians 4:6 NASB95
6 and that no man transgress and defraud his brother in the matter because the Lord is the avenger in all these things, just as we also told you before and solemnly warned you.
1 thess 4:
Tell me about this text; How many ways can we take advantage of our brothers?
-manipulation
-Dishonesty
-Deception
This text gives a warning, what is it? because the Lord is the avenger in all these things, just as we also told you before and solemnly warned you
1 Thessalonians 4:7 NASB95
7 For God has not called us for the purpose of impurity, but in sanctification.
If you are not striving to live in purity what obligation does God have to reveal to you more about your specific or purpose?
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