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Citizenship in our eternal Home (Closed Captioned)

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www.ziontorrance.info Sermon: Philippians 3:17-21 ... for us by Paul in his letter to the Philippians where we read from Chapter 3, beginning with Verse 17: JOIN WITH OTHERS IN FOLLOWING MY EXAMPLE, BROTHERS, AND TAKE NOTE OF THOSE WHO LIVE ACCORDING TO THE PATTERN WE GAVE YOU. FOR AS I HAVE OFTEN TOLD YOU BEFORE AND NOW SAY AGAIN EVEN WITH TEARS, MANY LIVE AS ENEMIES OF THE CROSS OF CHRIST. THEIR DESTINY IS DESTRUCTION, THEIR GOD IS THEIR STOMACH, AND THEIR GLORY IS IN THEIR SHAME. THEIR MIND IS ON EARTHLY THINGS. BUT OUR CITIZENSHIP IS IN HEAVEN. AND WE EAGERLY AWAIT A SAVIOR FROM THERE, THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, WHO, BY THE POWER THAT ENABLES HIM TO BRING EVERYTHING UNDER HIS CONTROL, WILL TRANSFORM OUR LOWLY BODIES SO THAT THEY WILL BE LIKE HIS GLORIOUS BODY. This is the Word of our Lord. Let us pray: Glorious and gracious God, may the words of my mouth and the meditation of each of our hearts be acceptable in Your sight, our only source of hope and comfort. Amen. [Text taken from the HOLY BIBLE: NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION 1978, used by permission of Zondervan Bible Publishers.] Dear Followers of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. God's prophet, Hosea, had an interesting life. An interesting life because it was his job, designed by God, to teach the children of God that they had abandoned the Lord. And God came to him and said in a very unique and interesting way ... I want you to show God's people what they have done. I want you to go and marry a prostitute. Someone who doesn't understand what true love is. Someone who gives that love to whoever will pay for it. I want you to love her. I want you to take her as your wife. I want you to show ALL of God's people what God's love is really like. And she will treat you horribly. She will be unfaithful to you. And you will love her. What an apt picture that was for God's people of the Old Testament ... who He had loved so deeply, so fully, so totally and yet they ran away from Him going elsewhere to find love and satisfaction and protection. And Hosea came to them and he said these words: "HEAR THE WORD OF THE LORD," "THERE IS NO FAITHFULNESS, NO LOVE, NO ACKNOWLEDGMENT OF GOD IN THE LAND. THERE IS ONLY CURSING, LYING AND MURDER, STEALING AND ADULTERY;" "BLOODSHED FOLLOWS BLOODSHED." [Pause] Hundreds of years later, the Apostle Paul wrote to the Church in Philippi. And he said to them: I'm almost at the point of tears because when I look around there are so many who live as enemies of the cross of Christ. So many who live as the enemies of God. Their god is their stomach. Their minds are stuck in the things of this world. Their minds are not on the things of God. But I remind you people in Philippi that it is time for you to stop thinking and being so concerned with the earthly things that are around you, because you ARE the children of God. You are the citizens of heaven and your mind needs to be transformed so that you are focused on those eternal things. The things of God. The things that are going to last. For those of you who were worried and concerned this morning about what clothes you are going to wear today, it was a useless amount of time spent on worrying. Those clothes are going to grow too small for you. Or they're going to grow too old for you. Or they're gonna wear out. And when they place you in that casket, the only one who's going to be concerned about what you're wearing are the family that's gonna come and look. And they're gonna talk about it. I never remember seeing her in that dress. Who put a tie on him? You can't win. But it's all "stuff" about this world. The things that we get concerned about and so wrapped up in and so amuck to spend such an amount of time on ... that we almost forget that we're children of God. And what are we doing for our eternal home? What are we doing to procure and keep that in our lives? Or has our worry about what we're gonna do today pushed out the fact that today maybe we should sit down with God in prayer over His Word. And spend some time in daily devotion ... to bring our families together, gathered around the Word and discussing what our concerns are. Praying for each other. Taking those things to God. Teaching our children that what is more important than the latest toy or gadget or cell phone, or plan, is what's gonna last for them eternally. In discussing those things with each other, sitting down and saying: What is our priority? What is our purpose? Because we live in a land that is filled with abundance. We live in a country that is at peace. Where we can walk the streets of this country without fearing that bombs are daily going to be dropped on our head. We have a police system and a court system. We have fire fighters who are all there looking out for our best interests. And when have we turned to God in thanks for those men who daily put their lives on the line. Those women who are out fighting to keep our land safe. Let alone all of those people in the armed forces, who are across this globe, doing the things that allow us to live under the blessings that God has poured out on us. That we stockpile in our homes; that we fill our closets with; that we have to rent spaces off-site to keep our "stuff". For what? For what end? To what purpose? Those are things we really need to ask ourselves because we need to transform our thinking. Because we ARE the citizens of heaven. And what of those things that we have matters to God the most? Just us! Just us ... and our soul! Because God did not come down from heaven with baskets, to carry away the resources and precious metals of this world that He created. God did not come out of heaven to carry out a plan other than the one to show us His love! To save our souls from the hand of Satan. To save us from the sin that we daily commit. To save us from those times when we don't appreciate the abundance that is ours. When we don't use it to keep God safe in our lives ... when we don't share what we have, with those who are in need because we're too selfish. When the first thought of our day is: What am I going to get out of today? ... reminds us that we have lost track of what God came to do. Because God came, putting aside Himself putting aside all of the glories of heaven, taking on our human form to live as one of us ...to BE with US. Immanuel: God with us. To show us what God's love is! To teach us how to live and that living is self-sacrificing. Self-sacrificing in love. That's exactly what the Apostle Paul wrote to the Church in Rome. He said: Understand that you live under a government, that has been established by God to keep and protect you. Submit yourself to that authority as you submit to God. And turn to your fellow beings and love them ... because that's the fulfillment of the Law. Because if you love them, you will respect them and honor them and give them what they are due. Taxes ... revenue ... respect, ... honor. If you love all humanity, you are not going to rip apart someone's marriage by committing adultery. If you care about someone, you are going to see them more as a human being rather than as an object of lust. If you love someone, you are not going to hate them or hurt them or harm them in any way. But you're going to do everything you can to protect them. To speak well of them. To praise them for the blessings that God has given to them. To rejoice that they have those blessings, and not have the desire to get those blessings yourself. That is the fulfillment of the Law. And Jesus came in love. The greatest form of love and sacrificed Himself so that we could live. And He called us to be His own and we KNOW that we are His. We don't have a god who is a wooden idol. Like Hosea talked about, when the people of God of His day who were praying to a bunch of worthless wooden idols. And one of the funniest lines, I think in Scripture is: And that wooden stick answered them. But if you pray to a graven image, it's going to answer you with ALL of its knowledge and all of its wonder and ALL of its splendor ... which is absolutely nothing. But we pray to a God who is alive, and who loves us ... who cares for us ... who speaks to us. And He answers us in His knowledge. And we await for Him to come and take us out of this world and to take us Home. Take us to the place that He has created for us. That He has made for us. That He IS preparing for us to be a part of for all eternity. We wait and long for that day when He is going to come and take us out of this world, transforming our sinful, lowly bodies to be glorified and holy forever without sin in His presence. In that Kingdom of Joy where with hearts filled with love, we will praise Him continually. He will BE with us and we will give Him the things that are His. Our love, our devotion, our praise. And we know how hard that is, even in America ... where many live as the enemy of the cross of Christ. This is our temporary home. We're only visiting here. But we're thankful that God has placed us here to enjoy those blessings. To appreciate what He gives us through our government, through our court system, through our judicial system, for those who protect us. We're thankful for all of the blessings that He has given to this country. But we know this is not our home. Because our Home is in heaven. Our Home is with God ... and while we may be away from it now for a few days or a few years, we KNOW that we're going Home! We wait for that day. We long for that day. But in the meantime, we live as God's children here. Showing our faith. Showing our love ... reaching out to those who are enemies of the cross of Christ with the only thing that matters. The love of God. Amen. Let us rise. Now may the peace of God which goes beyond all of our understanding keep your hearts and your minds, and especially your lives in the one true faith unto life everlasting. Amen.

Video Details

Duration: 16 minutes and 41 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
Producer: R & M
Director: Jesus
Views: 87
Posted by: hischild on Jul 8, 2010

As children of God, appreciating God's blessings while on earth, our LORD reminds us to show respect and honor to others while on our journey to heaven. Contact Pastor Dave @ www.ziontorrance.info

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