WHAT ATTAINMENTS CHRISTIANS MAY REASONABLY EXPECT TO MAKE IN THIS LIFE

SERMON BY CHARLES FINNEY

"And the very God of peace sanctify you wholly; and I pray God your whole spirit, and soul, and body, be preserved blameless unto the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. Faithful is He that calleth you, who also will do it."--1 Thess. 5:23, 24.

 

In this lecture I shall consider,

I. WHAT SANCTIFICATION IS.

II. WHAT IS NOT IMPLIED IN IT.

III. WHAT IS IMPLIED IN IT.

IV. WHAT IS INTENDED BY THE SANCTIFICATION OF BODY, SOUL, AND SPIRIT.

V. WHAT IS NOT IMPLIED IN THE SANCTIFICATION OF BODY, SOUL, AND SPIRIT.

VI. WHAT IS IMPLIED IN IT.

VII. WHAT ATTAINMENTS CHRISTIANS CANNOT EXPECT IN THIS LIFE.

VIII. WHAT ATTAINMENTS THEY MAY REASONABLY EXPECT TO MAKE IN THIS LIFE.

 

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My Personal To Do List

Bible Verse:
Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. Quench not the Spirit. Despise not prophesyings. Prove all things; hold fast that which is good. Abstain from all appearance of evil. — 1 Thessalonians 5:16-22

Text:
I remember the days of making New Years resolutions. Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with wanting to make changes in your life. I am not sure why I (or you) would have to wait until the “New Year” to do it. I do believe that there are two key areas of focus for us when we seek to live a Christian life. The first being “when”, and the second being “what,” When We should all seek to make change in our lives, but let’s not make January 1 “The Day.” We should look to be better servants of God daily. If you fall short today, ask for forgiveness tonight, and start all over tomorrow. So many people set new targets and fail, but the biggest mistake is that they do not try again. What Here is a list of things that we should resolve to do daily: Rejoice! Not just when things are great, but, when nothing is going your way. God still loves you! Pray always! At your desk, from your car (not while driving), from your dinner table; thank God for all His blessings, and ask for His continued guidance. Give thanks! Sometimes, when I pray, I am always asking for more, rather than thanking God for all that He has already given me. Quench not the Spirit! Do your best to do your best, and be a shining light for God. The spirit is quenched when God’s people act like they are anything but God’s people. Embrace prophesy! Someone may stop you on the street, saying that God has told them to tell you something. Instead of running, listen. After you have heard, pray to God for confirmation. God does speak to each of us in His own way. Prove all things! What is happening should align with God’s word and His will for you. Stay away from the presence of evil! We should guard our steps very carefully, not only because God is watching, but also because someone may be looking at us to gain a better understanding of how they should walk as a Christian. Sounds like a busy day, doesn’t it? You can do it! And if you stumble, pray tonight, and start all over again tomorrow.

Ending Prayer:
Lord, we are thankful for all that you have done for us. We ask that you continue to bless us and keep us. We pray that you guard our steps, and help us to be all that you would have us to be. Amen.

By Thomas (Mich)

Reunited

Brothers we do not want to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. 1 Thessalonians 4:13-14 (NIV)

I once grieved like most people when I lost loved ones. I lost my father at four years old on Christmas Day, my mother back in 1998, and six years later, I lost my youngest sister. 

After so many personal losses, I focused on studying God’s word. I once had trouble understanding why God called some home so young, so vibrant and full of life. Then I remembered how God gave us His only son to save us from sin. God’s word, the Bible, provides life’s instructions and directions. He is offering us His guidance in this world of heartache and pain, but it is up to us to take it. The good news is that we can be saved through Jesus Christ by faith and grace, and we can be reunited.

I found comfort in knowing that God plans to reunite all believers one day in heaven. I knew I would see my loved ones again. God calls us all home when He is ready for us. We only live in our temporary earthly home a short while, so we need to look forward to our permanent heavenly home with God. 

Dear God, in Jesus’ name I pray, guide, direct, and help us all follow the footsteps of your words to lead us to your heavenly home where we will be reunited with our loved ones in our permanent home. Give us the joy, peace, and love you promise. Amen.

The Bible in the Coffin

But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. 1 Thessalonians 4:13 (KJV)

On a Sunday evening in June of 2004, I sat beside the open coffin of my first wife Mary, who had been called home to Heaven by means of cancer. In her earthly lifetime, both as a nurse and just as a friendly neighbor, Mary had lived out the love of Jesus, speaking truth and practicing kindness to those around her; thus an amazing variety of people had come to the viewings to pay their respects, including a U.S. Navy admiral who had known us when I served with the Navy in Japan. Now, however, I was  alone with her body to say goodbye. In the coffin with Mary's body, by her request, was her favorite old Bible, which for decades she had opened for guidance.

I was having a time of "wrestling with God"--struggling with being angry at Him. It was not just that Mary had died, for I had the promise of John 5:24 that she had "passed from death to life;" but it was hard to understand why she had to suffer so much before she escaped from her body into God's presence.

After much spontaneous praying, I prayed the Lord's Prayer one time. Immediately after this, there sprang into my head the urging: "Look in Mary's Bible one more time!" So I took the old Bible out of the coffin, opened it, and found Matthew 11:6, the conclusion of Jesus' message to John the Baptist: "And blessed is he who does not take offense at Me." Finding that verse was no accident; it was God helping me to hold on to my faith.

In the months that followed, God gave me many more signs of comfort in my grieving; but it is good to remember that the first piece of encouragement He gave me after my Mary crossed over was directly from His written Word.

Almighty Heavenly Father: In a world where mortals try to ignore death, and then are knocked off balance when bereavement enters their lives, grant that those of us who have known Your consolation in loss may comfort others with the same comfort You gave us. In Jesus' name, amen.