This sermon – The Influence of Kingdom People – was originally preached 2013.09.24 by Ivan Weaver.
Scriptures used: Mathew 5:13-19, 2 Corinthians 4:7, Revelation 3:16, Ephesians 5:8, Philippians 2:15, 1 Thessalonians 5:5, 1 Peter 2:9, Proverbs 4:18-19, John 8:12, 1 Timothy 6:18, Ephesians 2:10, 1 Peter 2:12, Mathew 24:35, Deuteronomy 4:2, Revelation 22:18, 19.
Never underestimate the effect that you have on your neighborhood.
Reputation is what people think you are. Character is who you really are. Who you really are is the message that people will get.
Verse 13: “You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.”
Salt needs to be refined before it can be used. In its original state it isn’t very clean and it isn’t very useful.
We are like salt in that way. We must be refined or we will not be effective in the world around us. The all surpassing power of God rests on those who are earthen vessels. God has not chosen any other method to proclaim the truth of His kingdom. He has chosen to use us.
Note that this isn’t saying that we are the sugar of the earth. We won’t always get along with everyone. There are times when we will stand in opposition to the evil that we see and it will not make people happy. There will be a reaction at times.
Salt is also used to help heal things. It can help fight infections and can help keep infections from spreading.
We as Christians are a restraint to the evil that we see around us in the world. Don’t underestimate the effect that you can have on the world around you.
Salt is also a preservative. It can help to preserve things for a length of time. Does our life deter sin? Have we preserved our Christian integrity by the lives that we live?
If we have lost our “saltiness” as Christians, we may be doing more harm than good.
Is your life effective? Does it have flavor?
Verse 14-16: “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.”
We are called to radiate Christ personally in our everyday life.
As Christians we have a tremendous opportunity to shine the light of Jesus to the world.
The church is to be a bright beacon in the night that surrounds us. Light is conspicuous. The darker it is the more noticeable light is. There is a lot that shrouds the Christian witness, but we need to strive to be clear bright lights.
Christians cannot get away from the fact that they will be seen, they are conspicuous.
To blend in with the world is to deny the transforming power of discipleship. Are we ashamed of who we are? Are we genuine?
You can never underestimate your witness. The effectiveness of your witness may not be seen in the immediate, it may take years, but we should never underestimate the power of the Christians witness.
We are reflectors of Jesus light. The closer that we walk to Christ the brighter the light that we reflect.
Verse 17-19: “Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly I tell you, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished. Therefore anyone who sets aside one of the least of these commands and teaches others accordingly will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”
In Jesus the Old Testament sacrificial system is fulfilled. It is through Jesus we come to the understanding of exactly what the will of God was in the Old Testament.
Jesus Christ is the last and final revelation of God to mankind. There will be no new revelations. If we hear of a new revelation we can be confident that it is not correct. Jesus is the last revelation. He doesn’t change. The word doesn’t change, the Bible has never been and it will never be out of date.
All the attacks against the Word of God cannot and will not change the Word of God. It is sure and steady. It is everlasting.
If we have a low view of the Word of God, our position in the Kingdom of Heaven is in jeopardy.
We recognize the importance of loving God and of loving others. All other doctrine and teaching are built from that foundation.
Do we value sufficiently the spoken and written Word of God?
- Has your light attracted others to the light of Christ?
- Are you conforming to the word of God?
- What kind of influence does your life have on the world around you?
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