Intro: What is it that you want to get out of this
life? Paul tells us to live victoriously and to avoid excesses of the flesh.
Moody once illustrated this truth as follows: “Tell me,” he said to his
audience, “How can I get the air out of this glass?” One man said, “Suck it out
with a pump.” Moody replied, “That would create a vacuum and shatter the
glass.” After many impossible suggestions, Moody smiled, picked up a pitcher of
water, and filled the glass. “There,” he said, “all the air is now removed.” He
then went on to show that victory in the Christian life is not by “sucking out
a sin here and there,” but rather by being filled with the Spirit.
I left the scripture that is usually on the front of the bulletin blank today, all you see is an empty box. I left the title of my message and the scripture on the inside of the bulletin blank today, all you see is an empty box. The outline in your bulletin I left empty today, all you see is an empty outline. What is it that you want to get out of this life? Is your life a picture of an empty box or would you allow Christ to pull out your sin and let Him fill it with him? “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” John 1:14 (NKJV)
"The Word was made flesh" God's Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, was made flesh and blood; He became a man. No greater message could ever be proclaimed to man. Christ came to fill the box, the emptiness, He came to allow us to be filled with His presence, His spirit! But there is a cost, it requires everything in that box, it requires a relationship with Jesus Christ, it requires the front burner not the back burner, it requires first place not a runner up…
Application: Your life doesn’t have to be an empty box, allow Christ to fill it.
1. Full of Grace: “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.”
“God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” That is grace! And Christ is full of it, are you?
Through divine initiative, human alienation from God is turned by Him into a state of unmerited acceptance that opens the way for reconciliation and redemptive usefulness. A usefulness is achieved, made complete, a box is filled that once was empty when God gives us grace and we receive it! “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith--and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God.” The believer who seeks to live the Christian life through self-effort is like the man who, in attempting to sail across the Atlantic Ocean, found his boat becalmed for days. Finally, frustrated by his lack of progress, he tried to make his stalled boat move by pushing against the mast. Through strenuous efforts, he succeeded in making the boat rock and so created a few small waves on the otherwise smooth sea. Seeing the waves and feeling the rocking of the boat, he assumed that he was making progress and so continued his efforts. Of course, although he exerted himself a great deal, he actually got nowhere.
So it is in the Christian life. The source of the Christian’s strength lies in God’s grace, not in exertions of will-power, or in efforts of discipline, or any other self-effort. Self-effort will not fill the box, only Christ will. THAT’S GRACE! And His grace is efficient, it is filling, it is satisfying and it is complete. “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, concerning the Word of life-- 2 the life was manifested, and we have seen, and bear witness, and declare to you that eternal life which was with the Father and was manifested to us-- 3 that which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ. 4 And these things we write to you that your joy may be full.” 1 John 1:1-4
2. Full of Truth: “And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.”
There is a difference between telling someone about the truth and living the truth before them. The one who lives the truth literally becomes the truth. Jesus Christ is the Embodiment of truth.
Jesus says: “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” He is the picture of truth. God not only talks to man about Himself, God shows man what He is like in the person of Jesus Christ. Man can look at Jesus Christ and see a perfect picture of the truth of God. That is what must be in the box to fill it up! He can remove the ugliness of sin, the emptiness of the world.
Jesus Christ is the Communicator of truth. He Himself—His Person and His Life—makes things perfectly clear. He reveals the ultimate source and meaning and end of all things. He reveals the truth of man himself and of the world surrounding man. He shows man the right way to the truth, and He enables man to choose the right way to the truth: "Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.” John 5:24
Jesus Christ is the Liberator of truth. He sets men free from the great gulf (estrangement) which exists between man and God, between man and his world, and between man and man. He sets man free from the frustrations which he constantly experiences. He frees man from the fears and weaknesses and defects that plague him. Jesus Christ is the only lasting Liberator on earth. "You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free."
"As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. 10 If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father's commandments and abide in His love. 11 These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.” John 15:9-11
They say that at the foot of the Niagara Falls is one of the greatest unused powers in the world. I would beg to differ, the greatest unused power in the world is the Holy Spirit of the living God. The world wants to poke holes in the bottom of our box. The world doesn’t want us to be complete, more like consumed. There are a lot of empty boxes in this world today, I wish I could say there are none in this church but I would be wrong. We can allow the world to continue to have us believe that Jesus is not the only way or the only truth and life and there are other ways to “cometh unto the father.”
Can something come from nothing? What is nothing, is it something we make? Even with scripture on the front of a bulletin, and outline full of points and more scripture it can still be nothing until you decide to make it something. The real truth of the matter is, when you allow the contents of the box or your life to be filled with a relationship with Jesus Christ! Then you become complete.
A completely, committed follower of Christ!
In : Sermon
Tags: "book of john"
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