Being a True Grapevine

Exhortation by Mike Lawyer (I think) at Christkirk, 27th September 2009.

christkirkThe Bible tells us we were created for God’s glory. Glory means, in a very simple sense, to make one famous. Our job therefore is to make God famous. We do this by praising Him, bragging on Him, telling others of His glorious works in our lives and in the lives of our brothers and sisters in Christ, both now and in history. When others hear about the mighty works of God, they believe our words and put their trust in Him, and He is made more famous than He was before. He gets glory.

One of the impediments to our making God famous is when the words of our message don’t match our behaviour. It sends mixed signals to those who are hearing the story. But we believe God’s story is glorious, so why don’t our lives match our story? I believe it is a combination of two very simple things.

First, we become more Christlike when we spend time with Christ. It only makes sense. Love is efficacious, and when we spend time with the One who is love, our lives automatically become more lovely. Jesus said, the student becomes like his teacher. When we spend time with our Great Teacher, we become like Him. Why don’t we live like our Teacher, Saviour, Older Brother, Lord? Because we don’t spend enough time with Him.

Second, our lives don’t match our story because our lives are subject to a slippery slope related to the idea that our sinful actions really aren’t that bad. God tells us that when we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and will cleanse us from all unrighteousness. This means that after your sins are confessed and repented of, you are clean in Christ. You have a clean slate with regard to your walk with God. Then, as James said, you are tempted when your desires are enticed, and you sin when you indulge in those desires. But think about your sin for a moment. How often, when confronted with a particular temptation do you think, “This isn’t such a big deal. It is a sin but it’s of very little consequence. Hardly worth noticing at all.” But how many “hardly noticeable” sins can you string together before it is noticeable, at least by others? How often do you realise that you are sinning in really large ways and didn’t notice that you had stopped doing those inconsequential sins and had begun doing some humdingers. This is because sin blinds the sinner, and renders him unable to see his life the way God sees it. The slippery slope of little sins rapidly turns into very large sins without our even noticing it.

And this reminds us of our need to confess our sins, so please kneel as you are able.

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