Faithlife Sermons

The Body of Christ (Jubilee DNow #4)

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Introduction

Ephesians 4:1–7 ESV
I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all. But grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift.
I am thankful and honored that you have entrusted me with your students this weekend. My wife, Erin, and I have had an incredible time with them this weekend.
I was Ryan and Kaylee’s pastor before he came to Jubilee, and I can confidently say that you have one of the best Student Pastors and Student Pastor wives anywhere.
This weekend, we have been exploring the riches of God’s grace. Our Scripture verse has been: John 1:16 // For from his fullness, we have received grace upon grace.
I grew up on a dairy farm in Pike County, MS. It doesn’t matter where you go in the world, if you grew up on a farm , there is a commraderie, because although different, you experience some of the same things. What we share unites us together. Military, teachers, nurses, growing up certain part of the nation, etc.
We have a shared characteristic as God’s people that can bring us together more than any other single trait - God’s grace.
Grace is God’s undeserved favor, and this weekend, we have discussed how God’s grace isn’t small, and God is not stingy with His grace. Instead, God’s love is wide and long and high and deep, and the Apostle Paul says he lavishes it on us with all wisdom and insight.
We discussed how God’s grace is best seen in the gospel of Jesus Christ.
We contemplated God’s command to share his grace with others.
We saw that God’s grace is the power that we have to grow in the Christian life.
CIT: God’s grace unites His people together as the local church.

Explanation

Context // In Ephesians 1-3, Paul has shared of the riches of God’s grace. In Ephesians 4-6, he shifts gears toward how one should live their life in light of this grace. He says, because of this grace that you have received, you must now live this way.
His encouragement for them is individual at some points, but ultimately it is collective. Your individual life should be used to collectively build up the church.
Walk this way and live this way FOR the upbuilding of the local church.
Students, you might be wondering what you need to do next. Maybe you got saved this weekend, or God just blew your mind with how incredible His grace really is. The answer is in the local church.
Ephesians 4:1 “I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called,”
What does Paul mean when he says that we must walk in a manner worthy of the gospel?
The calling “Christian” or “follower of Christ” is the greatest calling in the world. We have been called out of our darkness, our sin, and our shame into God’s grace. We have been called not simply to experience the grace of God but also to make it known among the nations.
Only a few verses earlier, Paul tells the Ephesians, “My prayer for you is that you will know how much you are loved. I hope you know how wide, long, high, and deep God’s love runs.” To live in light of that love is to be worthy of that calling.
Because God’s love is so good and we have been bought by that love, we have big shoes to fill.
John Piper would say… If you are a policeman, there is a level of conduct that is required of you because of that office. If you are a judge, there is a level of conduct that is required of you because you hold that office.
Paul provides those qualities in v2-3.
Ephesians 4:2-3 “with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”
V1 could be taken to mean individually, but when look at verse 2, we see that Paul is talking about community. He is sharing the individual’s necessary contribution to the whole. Each of the virtues that he shares effects other people. If you walk in pride, the community is effected. If you are unkind, the community suffers.
Firstly, To walk in a manner worthy of the gospel is to walk with all humility and gentleness.
The first word that I want to highlight in this verse is the word “all.”
Not 25, 50, or 75% humility, but all humility.
Any tiny grain of pride or unkindness or impatience is less than the standard that God asks of us, and because God’s grace is so great and God’s holiness is so incredible, we should always seek to rid ourselves of impurity.
List and explain the virtues.
Humility // Pride destroys the community of God. When you place what you want over the needs of the body, the body will suffer.
Impatience // I haven’t been in your church but for a weekend, but I believe something to be true because its true in everywhere. There is a good chance that someone in this church and possibly in this service has offended or hurt you. I am guessing that person came to your mind as I said it. However, there is also just as good of a chance that someone thought about you hurting them.
No one here is perfect.
Only Jesus, and isn’t that the reason that we are here.
Ephesians 4:4-6 “There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call— one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.”
All of you in this room come from different places. Different backgrounds, different families, different experiences, and different careers, and different struggles.
But you do have one thing in common - Christ.
That’s the beauty of the gospel. Jesus came, lived, and died, and when we repent of our sins and trust in Him, He is faithful to forgive.
And the grace of Jesus is big enough to bring us all together.
All of the best things that we have - we share in them.
A powerful and unique expression of the body of Christ is right here at 9264 Pleasant Rd, Daphne, AL.
The same spirit of God is at work in us all.
We all serve the same Lord, meaning the we all wave the same banner and ultimately we fight for the same things.
We were saved by one faith and one faith alone - faith in Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sin.
We weren’t all baptized at the same time, but we have been baptized under the same premise. Jesus washed us clean.
And one father. That means we are a part of the same family.
Ephesians 4:7 “But grace was given to each one of us according to the measure of Christ’s gift.”
God’s grace is primarily seen in the gospel. We have been saved by the sacrifice of Jesus upon the cross.
God’s grace is also seen in all of the spiritual blessings that He gives us.
God’s grace is seen today in the gifts that He grants to other people. Because God has gifted each of us uniquely by His grace, we build and push each other into the people God has us to be.
This does not mean that we have the same gifts or even the same amount of that gift as the person next to us.
God does not give gifts equally, but He does give gifts equitably.
Meaning, God does not give the same gifts or the same amount to everyone, but He does give the same amount of care, love and thought into each persons gifts.
We use these gifts to build up each other as the local church.
1 Peter 4:10 “As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace:”
Explain the term: A steward is one who looks after another’s property.

Invitation

1. Before you can steward God’s grace, you have to experience it. Only the gospel of Jesus Christ can save you.
2. Walk in a manner worthy of your calling. Is there something that’s distracting others from Jesus? Is there something in your life that is unworthy of the gospel?
3. Resolve to serve and love and uplift the local church and its leaders. Famous preacher, C. S. Spurgeon once said that he had never found a perfect church, and if he did, he would not be able to be a part of it because the moment he joined, it would cease to be perfect. Maybe God is leading you to join Jubilee Baptist Church this morning.
4. Or, as I told the students last night, maybe there is something that God is leading you to do. I didn’t cover it in my sermon, but God is leading you to take the next step. Would you do that this morning?
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