Sermon: The Commitments Of A Spiritual Leader

1 Timothy 4:6-16

 

6 If thou put the brethren in remembrance of these things, thou shalt be a good minister of Jesus Christ, nourished up in the words of faith and of good doctrine, whereunto thou hast attained. 7 But refuse profane and old wives’ fables, 

 

and exercise thyself rather unto godliness. 8 For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come. 9 This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptation. 

 

10 For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe. 

 

11 These things command and teach. 12 Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an example of the believers, in word, in conversation, in charity, in spirit, in faith, in purity. 

 

13 Till I come, give attendance to reading, to exhortation, to doctrine. 

 

14 Neglect not the gift that is in thee, which was given thee by prophecy, with the laying on of the hands of the presbytery. 

 

15 Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all. 16 Take heed unto thyself, and unto the doctrine; continue in them: for in doing this thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee. (1 Timothy 4:6–16)

 

INTRODUCTION

 

At couple different times this summer, we’ve looked at the call of a spiritual leader, the character of a spiritual leader, and now, let’s look at the commitments of a spiritual leader. What is he or she committed to do?

 

Now, before I go on, when we think of a spiritual leader, we usually think of a pastor or someone in full-time ministry. Indeed, the passage that we’re looking at was written by Paul the apostle to a younger pastor named Timothy.

 

But the principles here can apply to everyone, because most Christians could be a spiritual leader in some arena of their lives.

 

A Christian in a secular workplace is a spiritual leader in that they need to be able to give the reason for the hope anyone who asks.

 

A mother is a spiritual leader to her children.

 

A father is a spiritual leader to his family.

 

Someone in a nursing home could be a spiritual leader to those around: fellow residents or the nurses and doctors who care for them.

 

So, don’t think that this doesn’t apply to you. There is likely at least one arena in your life, if not a few, where you can be a spiritual leader.


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Sermon: Where Our Unity Comes From

Ephesians 4:4-6

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4 There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; 5 One Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all. (Ephesians 4:4–6)

 

INTRODUCTION

 

God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit. Do we serve three Gods? Or One?

 

Well, we do serve only one God, but he exists in three persons–a Trinity.

 

I had a professor in seminary—graduate school for pastors—who, when he taught on the Trinity, liked to use the phrase, “The tri-unity of God.”

 

The Trinity is a tri-unity. There is the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. They are three persons, but they are only one God. 

 

That’s a difficult concept, but one that is basic to Christianity, and one that a lot of cults and sects stumble over: Jehovah witnesses, Oneness Pentecostals, and Mormons are just a few that do.

 

Jehovah Witnesses want to believe in one God so strongly, they make Jesus to be only a being created by God and the Spirit to be only a spiritual force from God.

 

Oneness Pentecostals believe in modalism. God has different modes, or titles: Father refers to God’s parental role. Son refers to God being flesh. Spirit refers to the activity of God. For them, God is one person with three titles, not three persons who is one God.

 

Mormonism believes that the Trinity means that there are three Gods: the Father, Son, and Spirit. There isn’t a unity at all.

 

Again, it’s important remember that biblical Christianity has a triune God. Three persons, but one God. How it is so is a mystery to us, because God has not revealed to us how it is so.

 

Many Christians, however, don’t think much about the Trinity. That’s too bad, because the persons of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit affect our daily lives as Christians. 

 

One way that the Tri-unity does affect our lives is by giving the Church our unity.

 

In Ephesians 4:4-6, each verse can be linked with a different member of the Trinity. Verse four refers to the Spirit; verse five, the Son; verse six, the Father.

 

What we’ll see is that each person of the Trinity has a different part to play in making the Church a unity. First, we see that we have:


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Sermon: The Burning Bush

Exodus 3:1-9

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1 Now Moses kept the flock of Jethro his father in law, the priest of Midian: and he led the flock to the backside of the desert, and came to the mountain of God, even to Horeb. 2 And the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a flame of fire out of the midst of a bush: and he looked, and, behold, the bush burned with fire, and the bush was not consumed. 3 And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt. 

 

4 And when the Lord saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I. 5 And he said, Draw not nigh hither: put off thy shoes from off thy feet, for the place whereon thou standest is holy ground. 

 

6 Moreover he said, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God. 7 And the Lord said, I have surely seen the affliction of my people which are in Egypt, and have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows; 8 And I am come down to deliver them out of the hand of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey; unto the place of the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Amorites, and the Perizzites, and the Hivites, and the Jebusites. 9 Now therefore, behold, the cry of the children of Israel is come unto me: and I have also seen the oppression wherewith the Egyptians oppress them. (Exodus 3:1–9)

 

INTRODUCTION

 

Once again, forty years had passed in the life of Moses. Forty years as a shepherd, a husband, a father (see Acts 7:23,30 for the timing). That’s where we run into Moses in chapter three:

 

Exodus 3:1 Now Moses kept the flock of Jethro his father in law, the priest of Midian: and he led the flock to the backside of the desert, and came to the mountain of God, even to Horeb. 

 

There’s a couple issues here:


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Sermon: The Road To Unity Starts With Humility

Ephesians 4:1-3

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1 I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, 2 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; 3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. (Ephesians 4:1–3)

 

INTRODUCTION

 

The first three chapters of Ephesians were about the calling of the Church and now, in the last three chapters we will see what is to be the conduct of the Church.

 

Paul announces that new theme in verse one of chapter four:

 

Ephesians 4:1 I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, 

 

He “beseeches” (strongly urges or pleads) that Christians would “walk worthy” of the “vocation wherewith ye are called.”

 

“Vocation” is another word for “calling,” and he is referring to everything that he’s laid out in the first three chapters. For example,:

 

1) As Christians we are called to be holy and without blame:

 

4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love: (Ephesians 1:4)

 

2) As Christians we are called to inherit riches in Christ:

 

11 In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: (Ephesians 1:11)

 

3) As Christians we are called to be saved by grace to walk in good works:

 

8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:8–10)

 

And so on. Those things are our vocation…our calling.

 

Paul’s issue here in these last three chapters is that Christians—the Church— “walk worthy” of this great calling that we have been called into by God. 

 

That we would live up to the blessings and riches given to us in Christ.

 

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Sermon: The Training Of The Deliverer

Exodus 2:11-25

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11 And it came to pass in those days, when Moses was grown, that he went out unto his brethren, and looked on their burdens: and he spied an Egyptian smiting an Hebrew, one of his brethren. 12 And he looked this way and that way, and when he saw that there was no man, he slew the Egyptian, and hid him in the sand. 13 And when he went out the second day, behold, two men of the Hebrews strove together: and he said to him that did the wrong, Wherefore smitest thou thy fellow? 14 And he said, Who made thee a prince and a judge over us? intendest thou to kill me, as thou killedst the Egyptian? And Moses feared, and said, Surely this thing is known. 15 Now when Pharaoh heard this thing, he sought to slay Moses. But Moses fled from the face of Pharaoh, and dwelt in the land of Midian: and he sat down by a well. 

 

16 Now the priest of Midian had seven daughters: and they came and drew water, and filled the troughs to water their father’s flock. 17 And the shepherds came and drove them away: but Moses stood up and helped them, and watered their flock. 18 And when they came to Reuel their father, he said, How is it that ye are come so soon to day? 19 And they said, An Egyptian delivered us out of the hand of the shepherds, and also drew water enough for us, and watered the flock. 20 And he said unto his daughters, And where is he? why is it that ye have left the man? call him, that he may eat bread. 21 And Moses was content to dwell with the man: and he gave Moses Zipporah his daughter. 22 And she bare him a son, and he called his name Gershom: for he said, I have been a stranger in a strange land.

 

23 And it came to pass in process of time, that the king of Egypt died: and the children of Israel sighed by reason of the bondage, and they cried, and their cry came up unto God by reason of the bondage. 24 And God heard their groaning, and God remembered his covenant with Abraham, with Isaac, and with Jacob. 25 And God looked upon the children of Israel, and God had respect unto them. (Exodus 2:23–25)

 

I. Moses Tries To Be A Deliverer

 

A. Moses Hated Injustice And Oppression

 

Exodus 2:11 And it came to pass in those days, when Moses was grown, that he went out unto his brethren, and looked on their burdens: and he spied an Egyptian smiting an Hebrew, one of his brethren. 

 

We leap forward almost forty years. Ancient biographers never felt the need to describe a person’s whole life, only the most important parts. That’s why the Gospels skip most of the first thirty years of Jesus’ life.

 

The birth of Moses was important to show us that God had chosen him to be the deliverer of his people. 


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Sermon: The First Prayer On Our Prayer List

Ephesians 3:14-21

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14 For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, 16 That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, 

 

to be strengthened with might by his Spirit in the inner man; 

 

17 That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; 

 

that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 May be able to comprehend with all saints what is the breadth, and length, and depth, and height; 19 And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, 

 

that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God. 

 

20 Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us, 21 Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen. (Ephesians 3:14–21)

 

INTRODUCTION

 

What does your prayer list look like? If it’s like many Christians, it might be filled with prayer requests for safe travel, healing for physical ailments, and the like. Hopefully there’s also prayers for the salvation of friends and family.

 

By and large, however, the prayer that Paul prayed here in Ephesians 3:14-21 is a foreign prayer to many Christians. 

 

Yet it is a prayer that we should be praying constantly for ourselves and for one another. 

 

This should be the first prayer on our prayer list. What is it? Let’s look and see:

 

Ephesians 3:14 For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, 

Ephesians 3:15 Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named [every believer now in Heaven and every believer still on earth],

Ephesians 3:16a That he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory…

 

After this introduction, Paul goes on to make four prayer requests for the Ephesian Christians. Each request builds on the request that came before it, like walking up prayer stairs

 

These are prayer requests that we can pray for ourselves and for those around us. First…


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Sermon: The Salvation And Preparation Of The Deliverer

Exodus 2:1-10

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1 And there went a man of the house of Levi, and took to wife a daughter of Levi. 2 And the woman conceived, and bare a son: and when she saw him that he was a goodly child, she hid him three months. 

 

3 And when she could not longer hide him, she took for him an ark of bulrushes, and daubed it with slime and with pitch, and put the child therein; and she laid it in the flags by the river’s brink. 4 And his sister stood afar off, to wit what would be done to him. 

 

5 And the daughter of Pharaoh came down to wash herself at the river; and her maidens walked along by the river’s side; and when she saw the ark among the flags, she sent her maid to fetch it. 6 And when she had opened it, she saw the child: and, behold, the babe wept. And she had compassion on him, and said, This is one of the Hebrews’ children. 

 

7 Then said his sister to Pharaoh’s daughter, Shall I go and call to thee a nurse of the Hebrew women, that she may nurse the child for thee? 8 And Pharaoh’s daughter said to her, Go. And the maid went and called the child’s mother. 9 And Pharaoh’s daughter said unto her, Take this child away, and nurse it for me, and I will give thee thy wages. And the woman took the child, and nursed it. 

 

10 And the child grew, and she brought him unto Pharaoh’s daughter, and he became her son. And she called his name Moses: and she said, Because I drew him out of the water. (Exodus 2:1–10)

 

I. GOD SAVES THE DELIVERER

 

A. The Need For A Deliverer

 

Israel, as we have seen, is in dire straits in Egypt. Their newborn boys are being thrown into the river. Their men and women are enslaved in rigorous servitude. The king of the land, Pharaoh, would prefer to see the Israelites eliminated from the face of the Earth.

 

If there was ever a need for a hero—a deliverer, Israel had the need. Four hundred years had passed since Joseph had led them to Egypt. Those were times of prosperity, but now, for who knows how many years, their lives were grievous and miserable. Perhaps by now many of them did not believe that the Lord God cared for them any longer. Perhaps they didn’t even believe in the God of Abraham any longer.

 

In some ways, we face the same situation. Things are getting worse in our nation. Some Christians have already had their rights and freedoms infringed upon. Every where you turn there are those who don’t believe in the God of Abraham. Today, as there was then, there is a need for a deliverer.


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