Paul gives us some of the most challenging words in his letter to the Philippians in 3:7-17 to stir disciples to a deeper and more meaningful faith and discipleship. As Paul wrote to Titus, that we must focus on Jesus Christ in order to move us to be a people who are “zealous for good works” (2:14). We must be active in our love, work, and witness for our Lord. We must be moving forward each today as we grow closer to Him. Paul says, “that we may know Him and the power of His raising.” (Philippians 3:10). Knowing Him better everyday will help us in our relationship with Him and with other disciples as well.
Last week, in the sermon we began to look at Philippians 3:7-16 and we talked about the fact that in order to be a NEW version of ourselves in a NEW year then we must PRIORITIZE (7-11). We must recognize what is the FIRST and most important in life. The Lord said that we must “seek FIRST the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you” (Matthew 6:33). It was Keith Park who said that in order to put first things first we must...Focus Income Relationship Security Time.
This week we will look at the rest of the verse and consider…
There are things that we must PUT AWAY (vs. 13) or get rid of in order to move forward and be successful as followers of our Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus said in Luke 9:62, “But Jesus said to him, ‘No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.’” We can learn by looking back but we cannot live in the past or dwell on the past. It keeps us stuck or allows us to stay in a rut. Holding on to past sins, offenses, or wrongs keeps us from being a forgiving and faithful people.
Paul says that we must be in a hot PURSUIT (12, 14) to do things that are beneficial to our faith. We will look at two motivational stories that help us to pursue what matters in order to be new. The stories of Glen Cunningham and Wilma Rudolph help us to notice that NOTHING can keep us from pursuing those that thing to help us spiritually in Christ through whom we can accomplish all things (Philippians 4:13).
And finally we will consider that we must PRACTICE (15-16) what we preach! We must be MATURE and MODEL the life of Jesus Christ before a volatile and dying word.
I look forward to seeing you this coming Lord’s day and encourage you to be a NEW you. I need you to come and encourage me. You (and the Lord) are the reason that I will be there this Sunday!
“ Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.” 2 Corinthians 5:17
Are you ready to start the New Year? I am! What are you wanting to accomplish out of this new year? 2021 is going to be a great year for our Fulshear Family.
All things are new in Jesus and that is hope for you and me. Consider for a moment how it all began.
According to Matthew, history puts things into perspective. It is also a confirmation of TRUE EVENTS.
Ancestral history (in the story of Jesus) places things in proper order biblically. In Matthew chapter one we get to see the lineage of Jesus. This is how “THE WORD BECAME FLESH” (John 1:14). Matthew and Luke describe in greater detail how it happened.
When you and I open the pages of the New Testament, we begin to see the earthly story of Jesus. Four separate accounts of the one gospel of Jesus Christ with 89 chapters/3779 verses (only 4 of those chapters/180 verses deal with Jesus’ birth/childhood) that tell His beautiful story from the cradle to the cross. John tells us there could have been much more written about Jesus (John 21:25) but what has been written is sufficient (John 20:30-31).
It all begins with genealogy. One might think that the beginning of His life is not that significant because little information is given (again only 4 chapters and 180 verses). However, that thinking would certainly be a false assumption. It is important for us to understand that the focus is mainly on His redemptive work on the cross and His commitment to God’s plan for saving all of humanity.
We read the names, which represent individual lives and stories of imperfect people but find their connection with HIS-STORY, the perfect Savior of the world. Matthew shares the good, the bad, and the ugly in the lineage of Jesus by telling of men like David and a woman like Rahab and their connection to the beautiful story of Christ.
This is a new year and it can be a new you. Decide now to live in Christ faithfully by loving and serving Him in full assurance with a living hope. “...Christ in you, the hope of glory.” (Colossians 1:27)
We would like to extend our warmest greetings to our Fulshear Family. You have blessed us richly in so many ways and for that we are forever grateful.
This year has been a challenging year and we had to face many changes. Life has been different and hard. But we are so thankful for the truth that God never changes.
Numbers 23:19, “God is not man, that he should lie, or a son of man, that he should change his mind. Has he said, and will he not do it? Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it?”
Malachi 3:6, “For I the Lord do not change; therefore you, O children of Jacob, are not consumed.”
As we reflect on this past year, we focus on our blessings, which include God, His unchanging nature, and His people. Thank you for showing us such love and generosity in 2020. We are so thankful for our beautiful home. We are grateful for the friendship and encouragement we receive from you. We are also thankful for the opportunities this past year has given us to grow stronger spiritually. Difficult times can help us define our faith. Our hope is that your spiritual strength has been renewed and you can feel the love of our spiritual family even though our fellowship has been limited. Continue to look for creative ways to bless one another and show God’s love to our community.
May God bless you all.
Joseph displays an amazing TRUST in God. The story of Joseph is amazing and emotional all at the same time. He is one of the most remarkable characters in the story of Jesus. It’s an emotional story for me because it’s a beautiful story of adoption as Joseph raises a son who wasn’t his own flesh and blood.
Joseph is a man who has a remarkable trust in God and helps God with His amazing plan to save the world. He is so selfless and raises a child that is not his own but one who would save the world by giving His life for the sins of the world.
How many of us would be willing to do what Joseph did? He could have easily dismissed the story as untrue and as an insult to his family. He could have looked for an easier path to follow with less drama. He was never made to follow the path he chose but nonetheless it was his choice. And he chose God’s way instead of his own.
Think about that for a moment … he chose Jesus! He could have chosen the broad road but instead he chose the narrow road that leads to life. He was literally at a crossroads and it wasn’t an easy choice but love moved him to choose Jesus! He was a good, just and holy man. And, many good, just and holy men have made the wrong decision, but not Joseph.
It took an amazing amount of trust for Joseph to decide to raise Jesus as the one and only Son of God. His TRUST would begin not at Calvary but at the cradle. How difficult it must have been to believe in all that God was doing in his life.
For us, it’s an easy choice because we look at the whole plan and are moved by the love that Jesus displays on the cross. Not so for Joseph! His decision would be much more difficult than ours.
It’s a crazy story but Joseph displays an unbelievable trust in a God who can do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine.
Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift! (2 Corinthians 9:15 )
Romans 3:23, 6:23
Since we recently experienced BLACK FRIDAY I thought I would give you a different twist.
· Have you ever noticed how life can change in the blink of an eye?
· Genesis 1-3 Everything went from GOOD to BAD...LIGHT to DARKNESS. So what happened?
· Romans 5:12 (interesting note - the word “sin” is not even mentioned in Genesis 3 when Adam sinned but that’s where it all began.) Genesis 6:5-7, Ezekiel 18:20, Isaiah 59:1-2
· Mark 15:33-34 - The Darkest Day in Human History was Black Friday because of our Sin.
1. Sin is personal : Romans 3:23
a. Check out these New Testament words for sin:
i. “Hamartia” – to miss the mark (Rom. 3:23)
ii. “Parabasis” – transgressing or overpassing a line (Gal. 3:19)
iii. “Paraptoma” – falling where one should have stood (Rom. 4:25)
iv. “Anomia” – lawlessness (Matt. 7:23)
v. “Adikia” – bending the right and making it crooked (2 Tim. 2:19)
b. We are all personally guilty of sinning (Romans 3:23)
2. Sin Enslaves Personally: Romans 6:16-17
b. It shackles you.
c. The reason we need freedom is because we are personally bound.
3. Sin is personally hard to overcome: Colossians 3:8-11
a. However, we can overcome sin through the strength of Jesus Christ.
· Black Friday was without a doubt the worst day in human history. Crucifying Jesus was
humanity’s worst moment and it was extremely dark (Mark 15:33-39, 2 Corinthians 5:21, Isaiah 53:6).
· God Hates Black Friday but He Loves SALVATION SUNDAY!!
“Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift!” -- The Apostle Paul