Came home the other day, saw Jennifer and Elijah walking.
Stopped the car, and just walked with them.
What a joy it was to walk with them.
Best part of my day.
When you are walking with someone, it’s usually intentional.
Unless you are an old mall walker, its highly unlikely that you’ll accidentally walk with someone you don’t know (or want to get to know)
How is your relationship with Jesus?
Illustration: Two Tier System
Many people in our churches believe that to be a believer and to be a disciple are 2 different things. So we have a 2 tier system of Christians with large numbers of people who believe in Jesus but do not follow him.
Churches are filled with large numbers of under-developed, stunted, nominal (name only) Christians. As a result, our cardio-vascular system that is suppose to be pumping the life of Jesus and Spirit out to the world is now clogged up and stuck with immature disciples. A serious shift is needed.
‘6 Therefore, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to walk in him,7 rooted and built up in him and firm in your faith just as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.
Paul here is saying a relationship with Jesus is like, “walking”
“Walk in him”
Most walks aren’t about the destination. It’s about the relationship.
Walking is not always a way to get somewhere, it’s a way to be together.
Often, in my experience, walking with someone leads to a deeper relationship.
This is why we are alway trying to talk about “next steps” at Oasis. Because walking with the Lord is as simple as taking your next step.
Last week – next step – join a serving team.
If you don’t have roots, eventually you’ll die.
Story: About two years ago, we ripped up some trees and large plants from our front yard and redid our plant beds around the house. We bought a variety of plants at Lowes and planted them around the house. I noticed as we were planting that my yard is filled with this red clay type dirt, not the best soil for the plant application in my yard.
So I did have a couple of plants die because the roots couldn’t penetrate the clay, the plant didn’t get the nutrition it needed.
What’s true physically is true spiritually.
Are your roots deep? In prayer, in Gods word, in fellowship?
Illustration: Rabbit Holes, Echo Chambers (these are roots)
Psalm 1 gives a picture of a tree beside a stream.
We hope we can be a good stream for Godly people who want deep roots.
“Built Up IN Him”
Any construction, engineers, builders, architects in the room?
He uses this analogy of building. It’s not an overnight thing. But day by day, you are adding and strengthening, the structure gets stronger over time as you build it up.
PHOTO: Church Construction
“Firm in your faith” (established in your faith)
What does it mean to be firm?
Story: We bought the land a few years ago, we thought it was ours, deed in hand, all the paperwork was right…but then it was brought to our attention that another entity might also have a deed to the same property.
We contacted attorneys and professionals to start investigating because we needed to get it “established”
This is having a firm grasp on the facts of the matter. It’s settled, its stamped, its finalized…
For each of us, we need to settle, firmly set, establish some things about our faith in Christ.
What do I think about the Bible? Is it all true or not?
You need to establish that.
Do I believe in Jesus or not believe in Jesus?
I need to establish that.
Do I receive full forgiveness of sin, or am I gonna live with a lot of condemnation and shame and guilt, or am I gonna let that go? You need to establish that.
“just as you were taught”
People are the product of their teaching.
If you are poorly taught, it affects their life negatively
If you are uneducated, you’ll believe all sorts of misinformation
If you are Biblical Uninformed, you’ll believe all sorts of “spiritual sounding things”
“overflowing with thankfulness”
One of the ways you can build trust with someone, two way trust, is to practice thankfulness.
Think about your best friendships or relationships – aren’t you grateful?
When gratitude turns into entitlement, it drives a wedge in the relationship.
If gratitude is replaced with critique – it drives a wedge in the relationship
If gratitude turns into complaining – it drives a wedge in the relationship
There is ALWAYS a reason to be thankful, the question is, do you have the character to find the reason?
8Be careful not to allow anyone to captivate you through an empty, deceitful philosophy that is according to human traditions and the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ. 9For in him all the fullness of deity lives in bodily form, 10 and you have been filled in him, who is the head over every ruler and authority.
This is a term of war. It’s an assault, an attack, a capturing of a hostage kind of term.
College Prank Story: Senior Day. Friend sneaks into a tour group. We got one!
Truth is, the Bible describes the enemy is “like a prowling lion, seeking someone to devour”
How are you taken captive?
The world teaches us and wants to convince us the stuff will fully satisfy us, but stuff always leaves you feeling empty.
Some people are on their third or fourth house because they thought it would be fulfilling in some way, but granite countertops and hardwood floors cannot do for you what Jesus can!
The world teaches us that a “feeling” will satisfy us, but then you hustle and spend money, and burn bridges in hot pursuit of a feeling and that feeling ultimately leaves you feeling empty…and you are laying there on your back going… “really, bro, why you doing this…”
Philosophy is not all bad.
I’m not against philosophy.
But there is an ideology. A worldview. A mindset that Paul is referencing here.
There’s a way of thinking that had become very popular in culture. It was being taught in universities. It was being reinforced in social circles, and the cultural trend and pressure was to push you in its direction and push you away from Jesus, and that’s what he calls the philosophy, and what he says is it’ll take you captive
The philosophy he’s talking about is the ideals of a culture that you embrace, that make you think you know better than God.
The Bible says this, culture says that, you like that…so you do that and defend that.
YOU START THINKING YOU KNOW BETTER THAN GOD
“I’m 26 years old with an English degree working for a technology company….and now that I’ve had a few years under my belt as a grown up…I think I know better than God.“
God, you don’t get to tell me how to live my life. Or how to manage my money.
God, you don’t get to tell me how when I can wear pants, or how many people can be in the room when I’m not wearing pants.
God, I know your word says I should embody love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, faithfulness, self control…but that’s not natural for me. This is how I was made. You need to just accept me as I am because I’m not changing.
In Todays culture we are seeing different “philosophies” that aren’t rooted in Jesus play itself out socially.
Philosophy of Pluralism – your truth my truth, all paths lead to same place, open mindedness…
What these philosophies do is take the attributes of God and strip him down to one attribute.
There is no room for God’s, Justice, Wrath, Jealosy, Judgement…only one attribute is accepted…Love.
This philosophy is not rooted in Jesus.
One of the primary hindrances to walking with Jesus is RELIGION.
This is mans attempt to appease God.
“If I do these things, I will be in right standing with God”
Religious hierarchy, performance oriented behavior modification in hopes that God will accept you…?
OR….even the “I was raised in church I’m good” mentality.
This is the unseen world. Spiritual.
1 – Don’t act like the spiritual realms aren’t real.
In another passage, Paul says “we do not battle against flesh and blood, but against principalities and powers…”
Prayer and Worship is where we do battle in the Spirit.
2. Don’t act like everything is a spiritual attack, either.
If your bank account went into overdraft, that’s probably not the devil attacking you. That’s you being irresponsible.
The devil didn’t make you do it! You just didn’t make wise decisions.
11For in him you also were circumcised – not, however, with a circumcision performed by human hands, but by the removal of the fleshly body, that is, through the circumcision done by Christ.
Circumcision- what is it? What it represents…
12Having been buried with him in baptism, you also have been raised with him through your faith in the power of God who raised him from the dead. 13And even though you were dead in your transgressions and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, he nevertheless made you alive with him, having forgiven all your transgressions. 14He has destroyed what was against us, a certificate of indebtedness expressed in decrees opposed to us. He has taken it away by nailing it to the cross.15 Disarming the rulers and authorities, he has made a public disgrace of them, triumphing over them by the cross.’
What is a certificate of indebtedness?
-today its a certificate that shows you owe money to someone
-in Roman culture, it was a list of legal infractions against you with the punishment due written beside it.
The enemies PRIMARY strategy is condemnation
Everything that condemns you has been nailed to the cross!
The enemy has been DISARMED