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Purpose Series – The Christian

Part 4, The final chapter of the Purpose Series. Discover your purpose as a Christian.

PURPOSE – The Christian

What is your purpose? Is there a greater question?

“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.

“As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Now remain in my love. 10 If you keep my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commands and remain in his love. 11 I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. 12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. 17 This is my command: Love each other.” – John 15:5-17

See, we are branches, who must bear much fruit so that others will know we are disciples. The fruit we must bear is love. Love for God and Neighbor. The fulfillment of The Word. The Demonstration of Jesus to others. The proof of our Faith. Love.

 

In fact, John teaches us that good works are how we act out love for others.

“This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters. 17 If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person? 18 Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.” – 1 John 3:16-18

James shows us that our good works prove our faith in Jesus is genuine.

“What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? 15 Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? 17 In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

18 But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.”

Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds. 19 You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.

You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone.” – James 2:14-19, 24

Hebrews shows us that our good works please our Father.

“Do not neglect to do good and to share what you have, for such sacrifices are pleasing to God.” – Heb 13:6

Paul teaches us that our good works demonstrate our gratitude to God for salvation.

 This service that you perform is not only supplying the needs of the Lord’s people but is also overflowing in many expressions of thanks to God.” – 2 Cor 9:12

Jesus teaches us that our good works bring glory to Our Father.

“In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.” – Matt 5:16

Equipping us to Love and do Good Works are the purpose of scripture.

“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of Goda may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” – 2 Tim 3:16-17

To do good works and to teach us how to do them is the purpose of Jesus coming.

“For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.” – Titus 2:11-14

Good works are the purpose of the Church.

“For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another. But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. The saying is trustworthy, and I want you to insist on these things, so that those who have believed in God may be careful to devote themselves to good works. These things are excellent and profitable for people.” – Titus 3:3-8 ESV

“All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales  and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need.” – Acts 4:32-37

 

 

 

And finally in Ephesians we discover, Good Works are our purpose now that we have been saved by Jesus.

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” – Eph 2:8-10

Why? Because any person who is truly attached to the vine WILL produce fruit. Otherwise our claiming Jesus is Our Lord and Savior is merely a claim with no evidence to support it.

“We know that we have come to know him if we keep his commands. Whoever says, “I know him,” but does not do what he commands is a liar, and the truth is not in that person.” – 1 John 2:3-4

“They claim to know God, but by their actions they deny him. They are detestable, disobedient and unfit for doing anything good.” – Titus 1:16

“Watch out for false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ferocious wolves. By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them.

“Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’ Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’ – Matthew 7:15-23

This is why Paul taught that on judgement day, our works could never save us, but our love and good works will stand as evidence that our faith in Jesus and our love for God and neighbor was genuine.

“For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each of us may receive what is due us for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.” – 2 Cor 5:10

What will judgement day look like?

31 “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit on his glorious throne. 32 All the nations will be gathered before him, and he will separate the people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. 33 He will put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left.

34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’

37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’

40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. 42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’

44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’

45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’

46 “Then they will go away to eternal punishment, but the righteous to eternal life.” – Matthew 25:31-46

Our purpose is to be loved and to love. Our love, just as Christ’s love towards us, is best demonstrated in doing good deeds for one another. Using every resource we have to love our neighbors, even unto death.

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” – Rom 5:8

The Word, The Christ, The Church, and The Christian… we all have a common purpose. To love and to demonstrate that love by doing good deeds. Our good deeds then bring glory to God, leading others to Jesus, demonstrate our gratitude for Jesus, prove our repentance, they please our Father, they are the fruit we ought to be producing, and finally they prove the authenticity of our faith.

You were created to do good deeds. It is your purpose, and if we will eagerly and enthusiastically fulfill that purpose… God will see to it to bless us and favor us for all of eternity as we build up our treasures in Heaven rather than on Earth.

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Jesus said there are two Masters seeking after our hearts, and both require all of us.

“No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” – Matt 6:24

“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” – Matt 6:21

Test the sincerity of your love

“But since you excel in everything—in faith, in speech, in knowledge, in complete earnestness and in the love we have kindled in you —see that you also excel in this grace of giving. I am not commanding you, but I want to test the sincerity of your love by comparing it with the earnestness of others. For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich…

…For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have.

Our desire is not that others might be relieved while you are hard pressed, but that there might be equality. At the present time your plenty will supply what they need, so that in turn their plenty will supply what you need. The goal is equality, as it is written: “The one who gathered much did not have too much, and the one who gathered little did not have too little.” – 2 Cor 8:7-9, 12-15

Do you love the Fatherless, will you help Ormond Church obtain housing for these girls, so that don’t have to end up homeless and then doing paid sex acts to survive? Will you help me do this good work, to show them Jesus’ love, and give them a home?

“Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” – James 1:27

Amen?

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