ONALASKA FIRST CHURCH OF GOD

"Where Your Experience In Christ, Makes You A Member"

133 3rd Avenue,  P.O. Box 245,  Onalaska,  Washington  98570     (360) 978-4161      FAX (360) 978-6941  
info(at)onalaskachurchofgod(dot)com

 

 

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OCTOBER 5, 2003

JESUS, THE ZENITH” 

SCRIPTURE READING: PHILIPPIANS 2:1-11 

SCRIPTURE TEXT:  PHILIPPIANS 2:9-11 

Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.  

NOTE: The word, “Zenith” means the highest point. 

   It means there is nothing higher or better.  It is the best! 

   How often have we heard someone called the greatest at what they do or what they have accomplished? 

   Yet often times, in just a few years or even less, they are replaced by someone else who is now consider the best. 

   How often in life have we been willing to settle for something good at the cost of missing that which is best. 

 What is it that causes us to consider someone to be the greatest or the zenith? 

v      Who they are (position they hold).

v      Their ability.

v      What they have accomplished.

    All this is subject to interruption and opinions that may be different from someone else’s.  

But there is one, who can never be replaced or bettered, that is Jesus. 

   “I Overlooked an Orchid Will Searching for A Rose” 

   Regardless of personal opinions and interruptions, Jesus is the Zenith, not because of our consideration but because God has declared Him so. 

Philippians 2:9-10 Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. 

Jesus is the “Zenith” because of: 

v      Who He is.

v      His ability.

v      His accomplishments.

 I.  JESUS IS THE ZENITH BECAUSE OF WHO HE IS. 

NOTE: We often consider someone to be the greatest because of the position they hold. 

·         A king

·         The president

·         CEO

·         Principal

·         Parent 

   Our position in life often plays a very important role in whom we consider to be the greatest, the Zenith. 

   What position does Jesus Christ hold in your life? 

   Is He the Zenith or somewhere down the list?  

   Is He even on the list? 

   There may be various opinions on who Jesus is but the important thing is, who do we say that He is.

 Matthew 16:13-16 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?  And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.  He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?  And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.  

A.      GOD THE FATHER IDENTIFIED JESUS AS HIS SON. 

Matthew 3:16-17 And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: and lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.

Matthew 17:5 While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him.

 B.       HE IS GOD BY HIS OWN CLAIM. 

NOTE: Anyone can claim to be God but Jesus backed up His claim by what He did. 

John 18:5-6 They answered him, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus saith unto them, I am he. And Judas also, which betrayed him, stood with them. As soon then as he had said unto them, I am he, they went backward, and fell to the ground.  

Exodus 3:14 And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.  

Revelation 1:8 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.  

Revelation 1:17-18 And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last: I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.  

C.       JESUS IS GOD BY THE CLAIMS OF HIS DISCIPLES. 

NOTE: Those who knew Him well, recognized Him as God. 

John 1:49 Nathanael answered and saith unto him, Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art the King of Israel.  

John 20:28 And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God.  

Matthew 16:16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.  

John 1:1-5 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not…He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name: which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.  

John 20:31 But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.  

   Jesus is not God because we believe Him to be God, He is God regardless of our belief in Him. 

II.  JESUS IS THE ZENITH BECAUSE OF HIS ABILITIES. 

NOTE: No matter who they are, no matter how great is their talent and how vast is their resources, they have limits. 

   Jesus, because He is God, has not limits to His person, abilities or resources. 

Jeremiah 32:27 Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh: is there any thing too hard for me? 

John 11:21-22 Then said Martha unto Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not died.  But I know, that even now, whatsoever thou wilt ask of God, God will give it thee.  

III. JESUS IS THE ZENITH BECAUSE OF HIS ACCOMPLISHMENTS. 

Philippians 2:5-11 Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus: who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God: but made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men: and being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.  

CONCLUSION:  The question you must answer is, “Who is Jesus to you?”

 

LIFTING JESUS HIGHER

OCTOBER 19, 2003 

SCRIPTURE READING: MATTHEW 5:1-16 

SCRIPTURE TEXT: JOHN 12:32 And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.

INTRO:  We live in a dying world that is filled with pain and sorrow and headed to hell, and the Church offers the only hope they have.

JEREMIAH 8:20 The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved.  

PROVERBS 24:11-12 If thou forbear to deliver them that are drawn unto death, and those that are ready to be slain; if thou sayest, Behold, we knew it not; doth not he that pondereth the heart consider it? and he that keepeth thy soul, doth not he know it? and shall not he render to every man according to his works?

JOHN 4:35 Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.

 It is the Churches privilege to point the souls of those who are lost, to a living Savior.

Jesus said, “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto me.”

The question is; “How do we, as Christians, the Church, lift up Jesus so the world can see Him and come to know Him as their Lord and Savior?”

I believe that the Sermon on the Mount, reveals the Christian life, that God expects us to live, in a nutshell.

In the Beatitudes, Jesus shows to us the characteristics that God expects each Christian to possess.

In the verses following verse Matthew 5:16, through Matthew 7:27 Jesus reveal how God expects a Christian to conduct themselves in this world.

Sandwiched in between, is the mission that Jesus has given the Church in order to lift Him up.

Christian, the Church, is often the only Bible the world reads.

It is our character and how we conduct ourselves in our daily lives, that ether lifts up Jesus and draws men to Him, or drags Him in the dirt and turn hearts away from Him.

I want us today to consider the characteristics of a True Christian, and how we life up Jesus to a lost and dying world.

I.  THE CHARACTERISTICS OF A TRUE CHRISTIAN.

NOTE:  Not only does the Beatitudes reveal the true characteristics of a Christian but they also show a progression in the Christian’s walk.

We do not reach Christian maturity at the time we are born again, but as we walk with God, read His Word and spend time in His presences we begin to grow into the mature Christian that God wants us to be.

MATTHEW 5:3-12 (GW) Blessed are those who recognize they are spiritually helpless.

The kingdom of heaven belongs to them.

 

JEREMIAH 17:7 Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is.

 Blessed are those who mourn.

They will be comforted.

 PSALM 126:5-6 They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.  He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him.

JOEL 2:17 Let the priests, the ministers of the Lord, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare thy people, O Lord, and give not thine heritage to reproach, that the heathen should rule over them: wherefore should they say among the people, Where is their God?

Blessed are those who are gentle.

They will inherit the earth.

EPHESIANS 4:32 And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for God's approval.

They will be satisfied.

1 CHRONICLES 4:10 And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that thine hand might be with me, and that thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested.

Blessed are those who show mercy.

            They will be treated mercifully.

MICAH 6:8 He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?  

JAMES 2:13 For he shall have judgment without mercy, that hath shewed no mercy; and mercy rejoiceth against judgment.

Blessed are those whose thoughts are pure.

           They will see God.

PHILIPPIANS 4:8 Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.

Blessed are those who make peace.

            They will be called God's children.

HEBREWS 12:14 Follow peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord:

Blessed are those who are persecuted for doing what God approves of. 

          The kingdom of heaven belongs to them.

Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you, lie, and say all kinds of evil things about you because of me.

Rejoice and be glad because you have a great reward in heaven!  The prophets who lived before you were persecuted in these ways.

NOTE: When we live the godly life that God wants us to live we will face persecution and often it will come from “Fellow Believers” who are unwilling to live a godly life themselves.

II.  THE MISSION OF LIFTING JESUS HIGHER.

   A.  WE ARE SALT.

MATTHEW 5:13 Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.

NOTE: Salt, no matter what else it may do, it is always an influence to that which it comes in contact with.

We as Christian are to take on the nature of salt and be a positive influence for Jesus in this world.

      Salt is distinctive.

      Salt preserves.

              Salt penetrates.

              Salt flavors.

              Salt is quiet.

              Salt spreads

              Salt is irrepressible.

    B.  OUR PLACE OF MINISTRY IS THE WORLD.

 NOTE: To often the only place Christians want to minister in is the Church but we are to go outside the Church into the world.

How do we as Christian lose our influence in this world?

We no longer have the characteristics of a Christian.

Poor in Spirit – Mourn – Meek – Hunger for the things of God – Merciful – Pure in heart – Peacemaker – We no longer are willing to suffer for the cause of Christ. 

   C.  WE ARE LIGHT TO A SIN DARKEN WORLD.

MATTHEW 5:14-15 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.

NOTE: Jesus is the light of the world, we are like the moon to the sun, and we reflect Jesus light through our lives. 

 How do we lose our ability to be the light of the world? 

 By allowing the Spirit of God to drain from our lives.  Allowing the world to come between us and Christ.

We need to replenish God’s influence in our lives, daily in order to shine for Him.

      Through prayer.

      Through reading and studying God’s Word.

      By joining together with other Believers.

    D.  WE ARE TO BE WHERE THE WORLD CAN SEE US.

 MATTHEW 5:14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.

III.  WHEN WE LIFT JESUS HIGHER MEN WILL COME TO HIM.

MATTHEW 5:16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.

CONCLUSION:  It is the responsibility and privilege of every true Christian to reach out to those who do not know Christ as Savior with the message of His Grace.

When we develop the Christian characteristics that God wants us to possess and live a live that is pleasing to Him we will be the salt and light the world needs to see Jesus.

 

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