"As for God, His way is perfect; The word of the Lord is proven; He is a shield to all who trust in Him." - Psalm 18:30

Who Is Your Lord?

Dec. 14, 2010

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Who Is Your Lord? Tuesday Night For The Master - Dec. 14, 2010
  

Roger Leonard, Lagary Carter, Ted Okolichany discuss.  Tuesday Night For the Master is a ministry of the Forrest Park Church of Christ in Valdosta, GA.

Who Is Your Lord? Or, Who Rules your Life?

 

Presented by Roger Leonard & LaGary Carter on 92.1 FM in Valdosta, GA. “Tuesday Night for the Master,” a program sponsored by the Forrest Park church of Christ.

 

Text: Philippians 2:5-11

 

Introduction:

 

1)     What makes your life real?

2)     What rules your life?

3)     Every person chooses a master to obey, whether consciously or unconsciously.

a)     Some become slaves to their desires and some to the world,

b)     But the best Master and Lord is Jesus Christ.

 

4)     The most crucial choice you will ever make is who will be your master and lord.

5)     Tonight our message has been titled, “Who Is Your Lord?” or “Who Rules Your Life?

 

Discussion:

 

Our Bible text tonight comes from Paul’s letter to the Philippians, chapter 2, verses 5 through 11. “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of the Father.” That is from the New King James Version.

 

The inspired apostle Matthew wrote in chapter sixteen of the book that is named for him the following words: “Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, He was asking His disciples, ‘Who do people say that the Son of Man is?’ And they said, ‘Well, some say John the Baptist; and others, Elijah; but still others, Jeremiah, or one of the prophets.’ And He said to them, ‘But who do you say that I am?’ Well, Simon Peter answered, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.’ And Jesus said to him, ‘Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven.’” That is Matthew 16, verses 13 to 17.

 

Now, what people say and think about Jesus is crucial to their spiritual well-being. It really is! Jesus put the Father’s stamp on Peter’s confession: that “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus of Nazareth is the Christ or the Messiah. The Hebrew term “Messiah” is translated with the Greek term “Christ.” The Messiah was the promised King of the Jews, the Son of David. And the word “Christ” means “anointed.”

 

Consider the words of the Samaritan woman in John 4 verse 25: “I know that Messiah is coming, who is called Christ. When He has come, He will tell us all things.”  Now notice Jesus’ response in verse 26: “Jesus said to her, I AM, the One speaking to you.

 

The apostle Peter told the household of Cornelius in Acts 10, verses 38 to 43, “You know of Jesus of Nazareth, how God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with Him. (And then Peter says) We are witnesses of all the things that He did both in the land of the Jews and in Jerusalem. And they also put Him to death by hanging Him on a cross.

 

God raised Him up on the third day and granted that He become visible, not to all the people, but to witnesses who were chosen beforehand by God, that is, to us who ate and drank with Him after He arose from the dead. And He ordered us to preach to the people, and solemnly to testify that this is the One who has been appointed by God as Judge of the living and the dead. And of Him all the prophets bear witness that through His name everyone who believes in Him receives forgiveness of sins.”

 

Jesus has been anointed as the King of kings and the Lord of lords. And He will judge us all on the last day. Notice that the Lord Jesus Christ said, “He who rejects Me and does not receive My sayings, has one who judges him; the word I spoke (that is words found in the New Testament) is what will judge him at the last day.” That is John 12 and verse 48. Now, we will not be judged by what people think, by what councils vote, or by opinion polls, or even by our own feelings. We are going to be judged by the words that Jesus spoke, words that are found in the New Testament.

 

Now, since our King and Judge is Jesus, we must recognize our accountability before Him. You remember the apostle Paul told the Athenians in Acts chapter 17, verses 30 to 31, “Therefore having overlooked the times of ignorance, God is now declaring to men that all people everywhere should repent, because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead.” Dear listener,  you can be sure that one day you will stand before the Lord in judgment. God will hold you and me accountable for our lives.

 

We are accountable for our attitudes toward other people. The Lord said in Matthew chapter 5, verses 21 and 22, “You have heard that the ancients were told that, ‘You shall not commit murder’ and ‘Whoever commits murder shall be liable to the court.’ But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be guilty before the court; and whoever says to his brother, ‘You good-for-nothing,’ [that is in Hebrew Raca; that is “empty-headed”] shall be guilty before the supreme court; and whoever says, ‘You fool,’ [which comes from the Greek word moron] shall be guilty enough to go into the fiery hell.” I tell you God knows all that happens in our hearts.

 

We are accountable even for our thoughts. The Lord Jesus said in Matthew 5, verses 27 to 29 “You have heard that it was said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye makes you stumble, tear it out and throw it from you; for it is better for you to lose one of the parts of your body, than for your whole body to be thrown into hell.” When people think immoral thoughts, they sin against their spouses and their God.

 

We are accountable for our words. The Lord Jesus said in Matthew 12, verses 34 to 37, “For the mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart. The good man brings out his good treasure and what is good; and the evil man brings out of his evil treasure what is evil. But I tell you that every careless word that people speak, they shall give an account for it in the Day of Judgment. For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned.”

 

We are accountable for our actions. Second Corinthians 5 and verse 10 says, “For we must (now that is a ‘must’) we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, (you see, what we do matters) and he will be recompensed according to what he has done, whether good or bad.” God’s Word further says in the book of Romans chapter 2, verses 6 to 11, that “He will render to each one according to his works: to those who by patience in well-doing seek for glory and honor and immortality, he is going to give them eternal life; but for those who are self-seeking, who do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, there will be wrath and fury. There will be tribulation and distress for every human being who does evil, the Jew first and also the Greek, but glory and honor and peace for everyone who does good, the Jew first and also the Greek. For God shows no partiality.”

 

We are accountable to Jesus 1) whether we know it, 2) whether we acknowledge it, or 3) whether we agree with it. Jesus is our Creator, who died to save us from sin, and He is also our Lord. Not only do we confess Jesus as the Christ, the Son of the living God, we also confess Him as “Lord”. On the day of Pentecost, the Holy Spirit proclaimed through Peter and the apostles to all the Jews that God has made Him both Lord and Christ, this Jesus whom you crucified (Acts 2 and verse 36). God has made Jesus to be your Lord and mine.

 

The word “Lord” indicates two crucial concepts.

 

v First, to call Jesus “Lord” means that He is divine; He is deity; He is God. The word “Lord” is often written with all capital letters in the Old Testament. And “Lord” is the English word used to translate the Hebrew term “Yahweh.” This is the same word the Lord God used to identify Himself to Moses at the burning bush!

 

In Exodus chapter three, God called Moses to lead the children of Israel out of Egypt and into the Promised Land. Moses was reluctant and offered several excuses to God as to why he shouldn’t lead them. But at one point Moses asked of God, “Well, if I come to the people of Israel and I say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ And Moses asked what am I going to tell them?” And then God replied to Moses, “I am who I am.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel, ‘I am has sent me to you’” (Exodus chapter 3, verses 13 and 14). Note this: the word in Hebrew “I am who I am” translates into Greek as the word “kurios” and into English as our word “Lord.”

 

When the Holy Spirit proclaimed Jesus as Lord on Pentecost, He was speaking clearly of the Divinity of Jesus Christ. Philippians 2, verse 6, which we read earlier, says Jesus existed in the form of God. Let’s hear what Philippians 2:5 through 11 again. “Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but He emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.”

 

Well, for this reason, (verse 9 says) “God also highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.”

 

Important point: Jesus has always existed in the form of God, but He emptied himself and took the form of a servant, being fashioned as a man. And in humility He obeyed His father by dying on a cruel cross. Now, because Jesus suffered and died for us, God highly exalted Him, and gave Him a name above all names, and He demands that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow and every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord! And this type of worship is not for men but for deity, for God.

 

v Second, to call Jesus “Lord” means that you have decided to obey Him; that He is your master and you are his servant. The word “Lord” in the Bible refers to one who owns slaves. When you and I became Christians, we became the slaves of Jesus Christ. A master owns his slaves and has the right to make decisions over the lives of his slaves, decisions that the slaves cannot stop or change. We may not always understand the Lord’s decisions, but we can always trust that He will act for our best interests. This helps us appreciate the value of His Lordship in our lives. There are spiritual benefits to making Christ our Lord!

 

All of us are servants to someone or something. How much better to be the servant of One who loves you and cares for you. Some enslave themselves to their lusts and pleasures, which only last for a short time and later destroy them. Some become servants of the devil, who uses them with cruel, false promises. Important point: the devil is never your friend; he never helps you; no matter what he may offer to you he doesn’t care. If you choose to follow the devil, he will always lead you where you never want to go. BUT, when you take Jesus as Lord, you give yourself to One who will always love and take care of you, and take you where you need to go!

 

The question is not whether He will be a good and kind master; the question is whether you will be a good and obedient servant. Obedience is not natural to us; we have to learn it. The Bible says of Jesus in the book of Hebrews chapter 5, verses 8 and 9, “Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered. And having been made perfect, He became to all those who obey Him the source of eternal salvation.” If we are to please our Lord, we must learn to be obedient to His will. Compare the statement about Jesus with James chapter one, verses three and four: “My brothers, count it all joy when you fall into different kinds of temptations, knowing that the trying of your faith works patience.  But let patience have its perfect work, so that you may be perfect and entire, lacking nothing.”  Jesus was and is a perfect Being. But when Jesus became human, living in flesh like us, He learned the inherent value of obedience. How much more do we need to learn it! The idea of being “perfect and entire” means completeness in our obedience to the Lord through the trials of life. It is not living sinless; but learning the value of obedience by dealing with the trials of life as a servant of the Lord. Through this obedience we develop Chris-like character and demonstrate our faith and our love to the Lord.

 

Jesus Himself said, that “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments” in John 14 and verse 15. Obedience is how we show faith and that love for the Lord. Notice John 3 and verse 36: “He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.” Question: How can the Lord rule in your life if you are not willing to keep His rules or commandments? Again, How can the Lord rule in your life if you are not willing to keep His rules or commandments? “What rules?” you may ask. Consider Matthew seven and verse twenty-one, where Jesus said: “Not everyone who says to Me, Lord! Lord! shall enter the kingdom of Heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in Heaven.”   It’s impossible to say that you have made Jesus Lord of your life, if you rebel against Him and refuse to obey His word.

 

The Bible says in 1 John 2 verses 3 to 6, “By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments. The one who says, ‘I have come to know Him,’ and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him; but whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God has truly been perfected. By this we know that we are in Him: (that is we have a relationship with Him) and the one who says he abides in Him (that is, in Christ) ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.”

 

The Demands of Jesus as Lord: Luke 14:25-33

 

1.            V.   26:            There can be no competition

2.            V.   27:            There can be no self-preservation

3.            Vv. 28-30:     No price too great to pay

4.            V.  31-32:       There are great odds against Christians

5.            V.  33:             There can be no exemptions

 

 - Franklin Camp on Luke 14

 

 

Well, how do we obey the Lord?

First, we must know His will as it is revealed in the New Testament. If we don’t know the Word, we can’t obey it.

Second, we must come to believe that Jesus is the Lord, the Christ, the Son of the living God. You trust what the Lord says, because you trust Him. In trust and love, you turn away from rebellion and sin and you turn to the Lord.

Then, whatever he asks, you are ready to do because you love Him. That’s repentance.

Then upon confession of your faith that Jesus Christ is Lord and the Son of God, and when you’re obedient to Him in baptism; that is when He will wash away every sin and add you to His family, the church.

 

Conclusion:

His servants ye are to whom you obey, whether of sin unto death, or obedience unto righteousness.” That’s Romans 6:16 in the King James Version. “But God be thanked, that ye were the servants of sin, but ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.” Those are verses 17 and 18. Those people had made the choice that you should make today. They had “obeyed that form of doctrine which was delivered them.” What was it? It was an obedience that culminated in baptism. What else could it be? Jesus Christ had been preached to them that He died for our sins; that He was buried; that He was raised from the dead. And they believed all of that and then they obeyed that form in baptism. That is Romans chapter 6, verses 3 and 4.

 

Who is your Master tonight?

Is it Christ? Have you made Him Lord on His terms or your own? You and only you can answer for you.

Do it today, and do it His way. Will you?