Faithlife Sermons

How Are We Treating One Another?

One Another   •  Sermon  •  Submitted
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All My Life I Had to Fight

How many of us have seen “The Color Purple”. One of the most powerful scenes is when Sofia played by Oprah Winfrey vents about the abuse she’s suffering in her own home. “All my life I had to fight. I had to fight my daddy. I had to fight my uncles. I had to fight my brothers. A girl child ain't safe in a family of mens, but I ain't never thought I'd have to fight in my own house!! I loves Harpo, God knows I do. But I'll kill him dead 'fo I let him beat me.” Her home was supposed to be a place of solace and refuge, her husband was supposed to be a protector and provider. Instead her home became an unsafe place of turmoil and her husband was a indignant man filled with insecurity. How does align with the body of believers called the church? The church can exude the same temperament, people come here for refuge, relief and restoration nonetheless when the church is reduced to a spiritual war zone God is not pleased.
There are three things that kill the church. Disunity, Immaturity, and Impurity. We have to be unified, we have to grow, and we have to rid ourselves of our sinful habits that set us back.
This text has been used countless times to justify and explain what grieving the holy spirit looks like. Nonetheless I believe how we treat each other is a direct reflection of how much or how little we are allowing the Holy Spirit to work in our lives. The question is, how can I treat my brother better? How can I treat my sister better? What does it look like to be kind, tenderhearted and forgiving to one another. The death of Christ is the power we need to possess these characteristics and use them in a way that is a blessing to those who are right here with us. I’m thankful for the way Paul writes this, because he begins it with how we treat our neighbor. Our neighbor may not have the same beliefs, they may not look like us, they may not even like us but the power within the love of Jesus is far reaching.
Let’s work backwards this morning. This chapter closing with “and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.
How often are we truly kind to each other. To that which causes no discomfort, easy. If its going to be easy to get along with people it should easy to get along with Christians.
There is a loving spirit, a benevolent spirit that is attached to kindness.
This type of kindness is the same spirit that Jesus speaks of in “But love your enemies, do good, and lend, hoping for nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High”.
Do not expect your kindness to be repayed to you. Truth be told your kindness might be nice and all, but God might have a better blessing for you if you keep treating people right.
When I am focused on the one another aspect of my fellow human being, kindness is not an issue, respect is not an issue and love is certainly not an issue.
Understand that how we treat each other is a determining factor of eternity. Be kind, tenderhearted and forgiving even as God in Christ forgave you.
Jesus did it for us despite past, despite current, and despite an uncertain future he still died for us, the least we can do is remain kind and tenderhearted for our fellow brother neighbor.
For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.
Our inability to forgive one another discredits the sacrifice that Jesus was for us.

What is Forgiveness

Forgiveness defined is to show oneself gracious by forgiving a wrong doing.
Now whom you forgive anything, I also forgive.
Bearing one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.
This essence of this scripture, the definition of charizomai means to bestow a favor unconditionally.

He begins with letting us know that lying to each other is not going to get us anywhere. In the context of forgiveness, if someone has hurt you do not lie about it, speak the truth.
Understand that without each other the church does not exist, and if we do not consider each other we miss an opportunity to grow together.
We have to speak truth and be real about our feelings, because we are members of one another. We belong to each other. What happens to one of us affects us all, and that’s how we have to operate.
When brothers and sisters are not getting along it affects the entire family.

Anger is A Part of Relationships But Should Not Control Relationships

“Be angry but do not sin”
How we deal with anger often determines the strength or weakness of the relationship. There comes a point in time where our spelling of relationship must look like REAL-ATIONSHIP, but so many times we focus on such on the “re”, we constantly have to Redo, Realign, Recreate, because we have taken the REALNESS out of relationships.
When forgiveness is needed, someone might be angry. How do we deal with anger?
Understand in these scriptures if we skip down to verse thirty we see “and do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.
The lack of forgiveness is grieving unto God, You are unwilling to do what Christ died for you to have the power to do.
When we refuse to forgive we are essentially saying the power of the cross isn’t big enough. If Christ was willing to die for sin, we should be able to forgive it.

Dynamics of a Healthy Relationship

Verse 25 says, therefore, putting away lying. Essentially putting it away once and for all, because we belong to each other.
so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another.
In this text Paul is quoting , and essentially reiterating the point made in chapter 4 verse 15 of Ephesians. “But, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head-Christ-.
Be real about feelings, we are family we shouldn’t have to lie to each other. The real part of this is we do though. We try to protect feelings, we attempt to hide information that we are not ready to share. It happens but the true potential of relationships cannot be reached.
Lying weakens trust, and trust is a fundamental part of any relationships. We can’t expect people to just understand and know how we are feeling. When people hurt us, we have to say ouch, when people upset us we need to be able to explain how we are feeling.
Pain and trauma not talked about has led to more toxic cycles in families than anything else.
Sinning as a result of anger implies that you are a slave to the anger. What wrath is, is a beyond the limits, poisonous emotion that overtakes our spirits.

Do Not Let the Enemy Take Up Space

Do not give place to the devil -
Do not let the enemy take up mental, emotional, or spiritual space.
Do not let toxic people take up space. The devil defined in this text means one who engages in slander. Folks that discredit you, people that discourage you, people that doubt you!
Do not let him move in, his goal is to corrupt everything inside you. His goal is to discredit everything you have worked hard for.

Responding to the Joy Stealers, Moving Forward from Past Mistakes

Verse 28, not necessarily isolating the thief, but if you are stealing, please stop, you making extra work for brothers like Troy Glover. But the application is it is not enough to stop sinning church, but to work hard to fill the void with something positive.
Turn your negative attribute to something that meets a need.
Labor like it was never an issue in the first place.
Often times our past hinders us, similar to an athlete that has a bad injury. If he plays like he was hurt, he’ll probably get hurt worse. We have to stop favoring our past injuries, we have to stop victimizing our past.
I would join that ministry but I used to be...
I really am interested in him or her but why would God send someone to me like this when I have the past I have.
Paul didn’t use his past of persecution as an inhibition to his calling from God. He took his past and turned into something that could meet needs. It’s people in here who know your past, but what they know should discourage you. And what you know shouldn’t be used as a tool of discouragement.

Be Careful How You Talk

Verse 29 states Let no corrupt word proceed out of your mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers.
Corrupt or such poor quality to be of little value, bad, not good. Essentially insipid speech, bitter speech, leaves people walking away defeated.
We should be sharers of grace and encouragement. We grieve the Holy Spirit when we talk like this to one another.
In closing, put all the bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor and evil speaking away once and for all!
Be Kind as Christ - Jesus did not allow the crowd to get to him and stop him from showing kindness to the woman with the issue of blood.
Be Tenderhearted as Christ - When Lazarus died he wept, when things happen to our brothers and sisters lets be tenderhearted enough to show compassion and be empathetic.
And last but not least let us be forgiving like Jesus! This is what Christ died for, not only for our sins but to show the world despite the negativity, the anger and the wrath there is a perfect love available for one another.
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