We invite all the ladies to meet with us beginnnig Wednesday, April 18th starting at 7pm at Grace Church for Ladies’ Fellowship.
For the next weeks the format will change a little in order to have the opportunity to hear from wise, godly women, both practical ways to serve God through serving our families and what His Word says about our behavior as women.
Childcare will be provided.
All church women are welcome to attend.
For more details please contact Gloria Vasquez.
Pastor’s Jay’s blog:
“The Goal of Every Christian Woman”
In conjunction with the sermon he preached Sunday, “How the Resurrection Effects Us Now” [Romans 6:1-7, 11] Pastor Jay writes:
The doctrine of union with Christ from Romans 6:1-14 is a glorious truth no doubt. Our union with Christ has liberated us from the enslaving power of sin in our lives. This was just one of the many benefits that Christ has merited for us in his atoning work. But even though we have this wonderful blessing, remaining sin continues to be present in the members of our body. Remember what Paul says even as a mature Christian man.
For we know that the Law is spiritual, but I am of flesh, sold into bondage to sin.
For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate.
But if I do the very thing I do not want to do, I agree with the Law, confessing that the Law is good.
So now, no longer am I the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.
For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh; for the willing is present in me, but the doing of the good is not.
For the good that I want, I do not do, but I practice the very evil that I do not want.
But if I am doing the very thing I do not want, I am no longer the one doing it, but sin which dwells in me.
I find then the principle that evil is present in me, the one who wants to do good.
For I joyfully concur with the law of God in the inner man,
but I see a different law in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin which is in my members.
Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death?
– Romans 7:14–24
Here Paul is sharing his struggle with indwelling sin as a mature Christian. He wants to do good but he engaged in an ongoing struggling with his sin (Rom. 7:21). But how does this fit with the glorious truth of Romans 6 that we are dead to sin and alive to God? The answer is found in the fact that both of these things are true and a present reality for the Christian.
Although we are dead to the mastery of sin, we still will find the presence of sin in our lives. We will never arrive at a state of sinless perfection and as long as we are in these mortal bodies we will never keep God’s word perfectly. But thanks be to God that we are trusting in one who did keep the Law perfectly on our behalf and who did die as a propitiation for all of our sins. We are saved by grace and not by works of the law. But although we are resting in the finished work of Christ for our salvation it is time for us to get to the hard work of mortification of our sin. We will always have to fight off our remaining sin until the day of our death.
for if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if by the Spirit you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live.
For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.
– Romans 8:13–14
Paul says again,
Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.
– 2 Corinthians 7:1
So this is the tension for the Christian who has union with Christ but is not glorified yet. We wait for the glorious day when we will be given glorified redeemed bodies, but until then the war goes on. So take heed Christian friend, if you find yourself in a struggle and a battle with indwelling sin, be of good courage, it is the normal Christian life.
Past resources on this subject:
Yesterday (April 9, 2012), as we celebrated Resurrection Sunday, Pastor Jay Jesuroga gave a special message on “How the Resurrection Effects Us Now” from Romans 6:1-7, 11.
- The Premise (Rom. 6:1-2)
- How God Accomplished Our Death To Sin (Rom. 6:3-5)
- Our Old Man Crucified (Rom. 6:6-7)
Past Resurrection Sunday Sermons:
3 Aspects of Resurrection Life [Colossians 3:1-4]
4 Implications of the Empty Tomb
On March 25, 2012, Pastor Emilio taught the evening service at a like-minded church (Providence Church in Plano, TX.) on the topic of “Evangelism Among Muslims”.
- Intro: 00:00 – 09:31
- The History & Origin of Islam: 09:32 – 29:35
- Theology & Beliefs: 29:36 – 39:29
- The Muslim Encounter: 39:30 – 53:44
- Q&A: 54:45 – End
Part 8 (see Part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7) of a series of highlights through Philippians (which Pastor Emilio just finished preaching though) from the Steven E. Runge’s High-Definition Commentary: Philippians:
“Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith” (Phil. 3:8–9).
RAISING THE STAKES FURTHER
What’s left after putting everything on the table in exchange for knowing Christ? Maybe not what you’d expect. Up until this point, Paul has treated the things he’s willing to trade for knowing Christ as though they were something worth keeping. By any human standard, they’re priceless! So how can he raise the stakes further? By saying that in his view, these priceless things aren’t worth crap—literally. That’s the literal translation of σκυβαλα (“rubbish” in the above scripture) and that’s the analogy he uses. All the things that we hold dear should be considered just as valuable as a bag of dung. In comparison to the value of knowing Christ, Paul’s most prized possessions aren’t worth squat.
When we have something of value in our culture, say a house or a car, we typically insure it against loss from fire, theft, or various kinds of destruction. We do this because we want protection against loss. When Paul says that he counts all things loss, he is still treating them as valuable. He is simply making the decision not to hang onto these valuable things, but to exchange them for Christ.
“In comparison to the value of knowing Christ, Paul’s most prized possessions aren’t worth squat.”
Instead of Paul considering all his stuff as “valuable, but worth the trade” for knowing Christ, Paul goes one step further. Knowing Christ is so valuable to him that in comparison, he considers his stuff to be about as desirable as feces. He shifts from saying it is worth giving up everything to saying he considers everything but Christ valueless. It isn’t even worth insuring or filing a claim for. It’s no longer a “loss,” it’s “good riddance!”
WHAT DOES THIS LOOK LIKE FOR US?
Instead of finding his identity in these things, he casts them all on the dung heap. If that’s really what all our stuff is worth compared to knowing Christ, who wouldn’t want to make this exchange?
Paul masterfully works his way through this illustration one stage at a time to move us through the process with him. As he lists his most prized possessions, it makes us wonder about what it would look like for us. He isn’t so much devaluing them as he is increasing the value of knowing Christ. In the final analysis, they are less than worthless compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ.
Hear Pastor Emilio’s sermon on verses 7-8 “Conversion & the Supremacy of Christ” and verse 9 “Counted Righteous in Jesus Christ”.
This concludes the series of highlights through Philippians from the Steven E. Runge’s High-Definition Commentary: Philippians
Part 7 (see Part 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6) of a series of highlights through Philippians (which Pastor Emilio just finished preaching though) from the Steven E. Runge’s High-Definition Commentary: Philippians:
“For many, of whom I have often told you and now tell you even with tears, walk as enemies of the cross of Christ. Their end is destruction, their god is their belly, and they glory in their shame, with minds set on earthly things. But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Phil. 3:18–20)
COMPARE AND CONTRAST
Paul offers contrasting portraits of the enemies of the cross in comparison with what believers may expect. In rapid succession, Paul introduces a topic and makes a comment about the enemies. After four such comments, he moves on to contrast them with what believers do or expect. The close parallels in the topics sharpen the contrast between us and them.
The contrast begins with the enemies, citing a topic and then making a comment about it. The outcome of their behavior is destruction, which stands in contrast to our heavenly citizenship (3:20). Paul made the same comparison in Phil. 1:28, contrasting salvation with destruction. Next, he tackles who or what they serve. In the case of the enemies, they serve their belly—something that can never be fully satisfied. In contrast, Paul references the heavenly origins of our citizenship by saying that we await the arrival of our Savior Jesus Christ from the same place. He is the one we serve—not our belly. In fact, Jesus tells us that if we seek first God’s kingdom and His righteousness, all the other things that we need will be added (Matt 6:33).
“Paul references the heavenly origins of our citizenship by saying that we await the arrival of our Savior Jesus Christ from the same place.”
What is it that these folks take pride in? What is their glory? It’s in their shame. This is not unlike those in Romans 1:32 who not only did things worthy of death, but approved of others who did the same. Here in Philippians, the enemies of the cross have their values just as mixed up. Paul contrasts this ill-placed glory with what we aspire to: having our humble bodies transformed and conformed to the glorious image of Christ. They glory in the behavior that will end in judgment and destruction, instead of salvation and glorification.
The final thing that Paul compares is focus. The enemies have their sights set on earthly things, which is to be expected of someone whose god is their stomach. The reference to heaven stands in contrast with the stuff of earth. Paul closes the reference to the believer’s outlook with how things turn out. At the end of the day, Christ’s glorious power enables Him to subject all things to Himself. This not only means earthly things, but everything else as well (see Phil. 2:10–11).
No matter how appealing it might look to follow these folks, the contrasting picture that Paul paints moves beyond the surface to the final outcome. Whoever they are, the Philippians want no part of what they are offering. We are repeatedly warned to watch out for those who will try and draw us away from the truth of the gospel (see Rom 16:17 | 2 Cor 11:4 | Gal 1:6 | 1 Tim 1:3; 6:3). In the end, their ways lead to death and destruction, not the freedom and blessing that is promised. No matter what gain they may offer in the short run, following such people is a losing proposition in the end.
Hear Pastor Emilio’s sermon on verses 17-20 “Committed Christian Churches”.