Faithlife Sermons

God's Three Wishes for You!

Lovin' Our Neighbor  •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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Introduction
Introduction
Attention (Why should they listen to you?) Angie and I just saw “Aladdin” and it was a ton of fun. Great movie and we really enjoyed ourselves...
What is the Hearer’s problem?
What is the Biblical Solution?
What do the hearers need to know?
Main Textual Idea:
Main Idea: God is no Genie in a Bottle, But He Has Three Wishes for You!
Interrogative: What are those wishes?
Transition: Well, that is what I want to share with you this morning.
Body
1. God’s First Wish For You? “The Grace of the Lord Jesus Christ!”
Lead in...What is the tension here? You know, when it comes to wishes we tend to want those things that are temporal and that which gives fleeting satisfaction.
In other words when we rub the magic lamp, we ask for things like money, power, a cool car, whatever!
But have you ever considered what God wishes for you? That His wishes might be far better for us than we could ever imagine? Better than any wish we could wish for ourselves.
And here, Paul, at the end of this letter to the church in Corinth, a church riddled with challenges and problems, he ends this letter with three beautiful wishes or desires for his dear friends. Three wishes we would do well to pay attention to ourseves
And the first wish, if you fully understand it, is far better than gold, diamonds, power or prestige. Look again closely at the first wish Paul gives to his dear friend in Corinth as he closes out this important letter...
2 Cor
2 Corinthians 13:14 ESV
14 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
Explanation - “The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ...”
First, I want you to notice something very significant. I want to you see that in this one verse we see the Son of God, the Father God and the Spirit of God. For those naysayers that that claim their is no evidence for the Trinity in the Bible, should, first and foremost, underline this passage in their bible.
And in this depiction of the trinity, the firs person of the trinity we see is Jesus Himself.
Now, notice what His title is. Paul calls Him “the LORD JESUS CHRIST”
Now if you will indulge me for a minute, let’s take a look at each of these words.
LORD - κύριος “Lord, master, ruler Yahweh!”
JESUS - Ἰησοῦς “Joshua, God saves!”
CHRIST - Χριστός “Be rubbed on” “Anointed one”
Now, what sense do you get when you put these three words together? Well, the sense I get it that Jesus is not simply a meek and mild pushover who is a pile of love mush that lets people walk all over Him and do anything they want to Him
NO!!!
He is the MASTER OF THE UNIVERSE
He is the SAVIOR OF GOD!!
He is the ANOINTED KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS!
Revelation 5:1–13 ESV
1 Then I saw in the right hand of him who was seated on the throne a scroll written within and on the back, sealed with seven seals. 2 And I saw a mighty angel proclaiming with a loud voice, “Who is worthy to open the scroll and break its seals?” 3 And no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll or to look into it, 4 and I began to weep loudly because no one was found worthy to open the scroll or to look into it. 5 And one of the elders said to me, “Weep no more; behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered, so that he can open the scroll and its seven seals.” 6 And between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders I saw a Lamb standing, as though it had been slain, with seven horns and with seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. 7 And he went and took the scroll from the right hand of him who was seated on the throne. 8 And when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp, and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. 9 And they sang a new song, saying, “Worthy are you to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slain, and by your blood you ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation, 10 and you have made them a kingdom and priests to our God, and they shall reign on the earth.” 11 Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, 12 saying with a loud voice, “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!” 13 And I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, and all that is in them, saying, “To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be blessing and honor and glory and might forever and ever!”
1-1
This is who Jesus Christ is today! Certainly He was born a helpless baby, certainly He grew up like any other little boy. Certainly He was killed by Roman soldiers because of the power-mongering , bloodthirsty Jewish leadership.
But make no mistake, friends, Jesus Christ was no victim. He went to the cross willingly, purposely, intentionally for one purpose and one purpose only - You!
In fact, if you look back at verse 14, you will see one of the most beautiful words in all of Scripture - GRACE!
This is Paul’s first wish for you! That you would experience “The GRACE of the Lord Jesus Christ...”
What is grace? Grace, by its very definition is “Undeserved favor.” It is getting something you do not deserve.
Do you know what you do not deserve? Heaven!
The bible says that you have fallen short of obtaining heaven because you have broken God’s law over and over! You have lied, your have cheated, you have committed adultery either physically or in your heart.
You and I are sinners and sinners are criminals that deserve a jail sentence. God’s jail sentence is is a real place called hell. Did you know the bible talks more about hell than it does about heaven? It is a real place that real people will spend a real eternity UNLESS they avail themselves to the GRACE of God!
Remember the definition of Grace? Undeserved favor. Did you know that the GRACE of our Lord Jesus Christ provides you with the opporitunity to trade places with Jesus Christ! Yes! This is what the bible teaches...
2 Corinthians 5:21 ESV
21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
2 Cor 5:
What this means is that God’s Son willingly sacrificing himself on the cross satisfies God’s wrath an punishment against you and you, because of Christ’s death on the cross can go free. That’s right! You no longer need to pay the penalty of eternal death in hell IF by faith you trust that Jesus’s work on the cross is sufficiently to cancel or pay for the debt you so desperately need to pay.
Why would the LORD JESUS CHRIST have this wish for you? Grace!
Illustration - A Gift is given with no strings attached.
Argumentation - Who do you think Jesus is? Why would he substitute His life for yours?
Application - I’m going to ask you a very forward question this morning. Are you a Christian? How do you know? What is keeping you from taking advantagage of a gift s amazing you could never possibly repay.
1 Amazing grace! how sweet the sound,   That saved a wretch; like me! I once was lost, but now am found,   Was blind, but now I see.
Amazing grace! how sweet the sound,   That saved a wretch; like me! I once was lost, but now am found,   Was blind, but now I see.
2 ’Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,   And grace my fears relieved; How precious did that grace appear   The hour I first believed!
’Twas grace that taught my heart to fear,   And grace my fears relieved; How precious did that grace appear   The hour I first believed!
3 The Lord hath promised good to me,   His word my hope secures; He will my shield and portion be   As long as life endures.
The Lord hath promised good to me,   His word my hope secures; He will my shield and portion be   As long as life endures.
4 When we’ve been there ten thousand years,   Bright shining as the sun, We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise   Than when we first begun.
When we’ve been there ten thousand years,   Bright shining as the sun, We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise   Than when we first begun.
Review - God is no Genie in a Bottle, But He Has Three Wishes for You!
1. God’s First Wish For You? “The Grace of the Lord Jesus Christ!”
2. God’s Second Wish for You? “The Love of God!”
Lead in…Love in the english language is such an overused term.
I love my wife!
I love my pizza!
I love me a nap in the afternoon after a Sunday lunch
Love, love, love!
In the Greek language, in which the New Testament was written, there are several words for love.
The four loves in the Greek Bible...
Storge – empathy bond.
Philia – friend bond.
Eros – romantic love.
Agape – unconditional "God" love.
Paul’s second wish for the Corinthians and for us is the last love - the unconditional love that only God can truly offer.
This love is from the Father who loves the entire world. Who has a deep and abiding love for you! This, in fact, is His motive for offering the grace we talked about!
Here are just a sampling of verses that demonstrate the profound love God has for his people.
Jeremiah 31:3 ESV
3 the Lord appeared to him from far away. I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have continued my faithfulness to you.
1 John 3:1 ESV
1 See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him.
1 John 4:8 ESV
8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.
John 3:16 ESV
16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.
Romans 5:8 ESV
8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
What a tremendous wish Paul has for his people! He desires for the LOVE OF GOD to be with them all. The agape, self sacrificial type love that’s main goal and purpose is for the betterment of the recipient.
Did you know that it is this kind of love that you need more than anything in this world? That this love is so important, your eternal life depends on it?
This, of course, is the gospel. Now, maybe you are familiar with the gospel so allow me to explain...
God had a perfect design when He created everything...
Genesis 1:31 ESV
31 And God saw everything that he had made, and behold, it was very good. And there was evening and there was morning, the sixth day.
Gen
Psalm 19:1 ESV
1 The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.
Psalm
But then, sin entered the world. Sin is when we ignore God and His original design for our lives. We selfishly insist on doing things our own way and we distort God’s original design.
The consequence of our sin is separation from God in this life and for all eternity.
Romans 3:23 ESV
23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
Romans 6:23 ESV
23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Sin leads to a place of brokenness. We see this all around us and in our own lives as well.
When we realized life is not working, we begin to look for a way out. We tend to go in many directions trying different things to figure it out on our own.
entn things to figure it out on our own.
Brokenness leds to a place of realizing a need for something greater,
Romans 1:25 ESV
25 because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.
Proverbs 14:12 ESV
12 There is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way to death.
At this point we need a remedy - some good news
Because of His love God did not leave us in our brokenness, Jesus, God in human flesh, came to us and lived perfectly according to God’s design.
Jesus came to rescue us - to do for us what we could not do for ourselves. He took our sin and shame on the cross, paying the penalty of our sin by his death. Jesus was then raised from the dead - to provide the only way for us to be rescued and restored to a relationship with God.
Colossians 2:14 ESV
14 by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross.
1 Corinthians 15:3–4 ESV
3 For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures,
Simply hearing the good news is not enough. We must admit our sinful brokenness and stop trusting ourselves. We don’t have the power to escape this brokenness on our own. WE need to be rescued.
We must ask God to forgive us - turning from sin to trust only in Jesus! This is what it means to repent and believe.
Believing, we receive new life through Jesus and God turns our lives in a new direction.
Mark 1:15 ESV
15 and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.”
Ephesians 2:8–9 ESV
8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast.
Romans 10:9 ESV
9 because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
When God restores our relationship to Him, we begin to discover meaning and purpose in a broken world. Now we can pursue God’s design in all areas of our lives
Even when we fail, we understand God’s pathway to be restored - this same good news of Jesus Christ. God’s spirit empowers us to recover His design and assure us of His presence in this life and for all of eternity!
Philippians 2:13 ESV
13 for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.
Ephesians 2:10 ESV
10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
Illustration -
Illustration -
Argumentation - If you had the power to give someone the very best thing they could ever possibly imagine, would you? God did!
Application - Have you received God’s gift of Love? What is keeping you from receiving it today?
Application -
Romans 10:9 ESV
9 because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.
Romans 10:13 ESV
13 For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”
Review - God is no Genie in a Bottle, But He Has Three Wishes for You!
1. God’s First Wish For You? “The Grace of the Lord Jesus Christ!”
2. God’s Second Wish for You? “The Love of God!”
3. God’s Third Wish for You? “The Fellowship of the Holy Spirit...”
Lead in...What is the tension here? Loneliness is one of the greatest challenges we face as a people. We are connected by our little black boxes but our lives feel more meaninglessness thank ever.
Text - But the third wish that Paul gives his friends is a significant one. It is a wish for “The Fellowship of the Holy Spirit”
Explanation - Do you understand the significance of this? So many wonderful realities...
The Holy Spirit saves us
The Holy Spirit justifies us
The Holy Spirit indwells us
The Holy Spirit fills us
The Holy Spirit baptizes us…this is so important because he makes us part of his body...
Illustration - We can’t do this alone! The body needs each other!
Argumentation - If you are a believer, you need the fellowship of the holy Spirit!
Application - You can’t do this on your own, you need to be a member of a local congregation.
Review - God is no Genie in a Bottle, But He Has Three Wishes for You!
1. God’s First Wish For You? “The Grace of the Lord Jesus Christ!”
2. God’s Second Wish for You? “The Love of God!”
3. God’s Third Wish for You? “The Fellowship of the Holy Spirit...”
Conclusion (Visualization)
Aladdin was a cool movie and honestly, having three wishes would be amazing! But’i’m here to tell you, that God’s wishes for you are far greater. The question I leave you with is this. Will you wish what He wishes for you?
Action they should take
Land the Plane
Connection Group Reflection Questions
What stands out to you from this text?
Paul wishes these three things will be a part of each Christian’s life. Which one is the most meaningful to you? Why?
Why is grace so important in light of Jesus being the all powerful Lord of the universe?
How do you describe the love of God in your own words?
The Holy Spirit connects His people. Explain the benefits the reality of this truth!
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