Authority And Submission—1 Corinthians 11:2-16

20151227FBCAM

Levi Durfey

 

INTRODUCTION

 

There’s a lot in this passage and I won’t be able to answer every question. Some of it is confusing, but there is one clear principle being taught here. That is…

 

THE PRINCIPLE OF AUTHORITY AND SUBMISSION

 

We might groan when we hear those words, but the principle of authority and submission is a crucial one in God’s universe. 

 

Without submission to the governing authorities, there is anarchy. Without submission of employees to the authority of the employer, nothing much gets done at work. Without submission and authority in the family, the family breaks apart. Without submission and authority in the church, there’s chaos, complaining, and conflict. 

 

God did not just invent this principle out of thin air. It’s part of who God is. It’s a part of the Trinity: the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Paul states the principle and it’s foundation in verse 3—

 

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Being Joyful Like The Shepherds

Series: Seasonal Attitudes To Have All Year Long

Topic: Joy, Luke 2:8-20

20151220FBCAM

Levi Durfey

 

INTRODUCTION

 

This holiday season we’ve been looking at seasonal attitudes to have all year long. During the stressful holidays, we especially need cultivate in our hearts the attitudes of contentment, thankfulness, peace, gentleness, and patience. But a person could have all those attitudes and still miss the most important attitude to have this season—joy.

 

If you look at Christmas decorations or cards, you’ll find that “joy” is often a word found somewhere on them. Here’s a few quotes from cards that I found:

 

  • May Peace, Joy, Hope and Happiness be yours during this Holiday Season and throughout the New Year

 

  • Wishing you a Joyous Christmas and a New Year filled with Peace and Happiness

 

  • Best Wishes for Peace and Joy this Christmas and a New Year of Health, Happiness and Prosperity

 

What do you suppose most people would say is the reason that they have joy during the holidays? I made a list—

 

1. Some people say that they like the decorations.

2. Others find their joy in the Christmas parties.

3. Children are often happy to receive Christmas gifts.

4. Many people are excited about being together with family.

5. Kids and college students rejoice in having a break from school.

 

I am sure we could add to that list, but it’s clear that people can have many reasons for being joyful during the holidays. But notice that the decorations, parties, gifts, family get-togethers, and school breaks all come to an end. The joy they bring ends, sometimes with a hangover!

 

Christians, however, have a source of joy that will never end. It’s the same joy that came to the shepherds who witnessed Jesus’ birth over 2,000 years ago. What gave them joy? It was a joyful message, followed by a joyful encounter.

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Be Patient, God Is Working On You

Series: Seasonal Attitudes To Have All Year Long

Topic: Patience

20151206FBCAM

Levi Durfey

 

INTRODUCTION

 

Today…we…will…learn…what…the…Bible…teaches…about…patience.

 

We have been looking at seasonal attitudes to have all year long. First, there’s contentment, which is vital in a season where overspending is easy to do. Second, we looked at being thankful, especially how it can be a catalyst to our spiritual growth. Then we saw that an attitude of peace was critical to reducing stress during the holidays. Briefly, we looked at gentleness, especially important because many people who have suffered loss feel that loss most during the holidays and may need a gentle touch.

 

Now, we take a look at patience. Why patience? Well, think of kids this time of year. What do they want for Christmas? How long is it until Christmas?

 

Waiting for presents is not the only, or even the most important, reason we need patience this Christmas season. As we remember Christ’s first coming, we need to dial up the patience as we wait for his second coming. Is he ever going to return? Will there ever be peace on earth? The sad Christmas carol, “I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day,” written at the height of the bloody Civil War, laments about this very thing:

 

And in despair I bowed my head;

“There is no peace on earth,” I said;

“For hate is strong,

And mocks the song

Of peace on earth, good-will to men!”

 

Have you ever waited so long for something to happen that you gave up? Once when we were on vacation, we were driving through Missouri on the Interstate when we found ourselves in a traffic jam—there must have been a huge wreck far up ahead. We weaved and bumped a little but eventually settled into the right lane where we crept slowly along. Each minute dragged by like it was an hour.

 

Tami looked out her window and saw a turtle on the side of the road—it was going faster than we were! Eventually we got near an off-ramp, and since I had given up patience a mile back, I took it. We escaped the Interstate for a nice long rural drive around the traffic jam, but in the end, we spent more time driving around trying to find a way to get where we wanted to go then it would have if we had just stayed in the traffic jam.

 

Patience is “the capacity to hold out or bear up in the face of difficulty” (BDAG). Patience is more than just waiting; patience is holding up when things are difficult. Patience is more than just holding up when things are difficult—it is holding up when things are difficult without complaining or murmuring.

 

Waiting for Christ to return, waiting to open presents, waiting in line to buy presents, waiting for the package to be delivered by Fed Ex. The holidays are a prime time for our patience to be tested to the limits. It’s a stressful time for many.  We need to be patient with one another and even with strangers and UPS drivers!

 

How does the gospel teach us and enable us to be patient?

 

Christian patience is based on the hope that we have for a better future beyond this life. We may nod and agree with that statement, but can being patient for the coming of Jesus Christ really help us be patient with an annoying in-law or church member or a long line at the store? The apostle Paul felt so. In 2 Corinthians chapter 4, we get insight into how he managed to be patient through the greatest of difficulties and problems. In fact, our first lesson from this passage is that…

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Gentleness: Following A Gentle Savior

Series: Seasonal Attitudes To Have All Year Long 

Topic: Gentleness

20151206FBCAM

Levi Durfey

 

INTRODUCTION

 

We have been looking at seasonal attitudes to have all year long. First, there’s contentment, which is vital in a season where overspending is easy to do. Second, we looked at being thankful, especially how it can be a catalyst to our spiritual growth. Then we saw that an attitude of peace was critical to reducing stress during the holidays—we need to let God’s peace keep our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus by presenting our requests to him in worshipful and humble prayer.

 

Now we take a look at another seasonal attitude we need to have: Gentleness. Why gentleness? First, gentleness is supposed to be a mark of a Christian. It’s one of the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23), so it had better be growing in our lives. 

 

Second, it’s during the holidays that many people who have lost loved ones feel that loss most. The person could have died six weeks previous, six months previous, or six years previous. But the thought of spending Thanksgiving or Christmas without them opens the wounds of their heart. Christians should be a people who can reach out in gentleness to those who are grieving.

 

What is gentleness? It’s funny how you think you know what a word means until you try to define it. We know what gentleness is from seeing it in action. A mother with her baby. A nurse with a patient. A kitten curled up and asleep on someone’s lap. But how do we describe it? One secular encyclopedia had a surprisingly good definition:

 

Gentleness is a strong hand with a soft touch. It is a tender, compassionate approach toward others’ weaknesses and limitations. A gentle person still speaks truth, sometimes even painful truth, but in doing so guards his tone so the truth can be well received. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gentleness)

 

My own definition of gentleness is this: Gentleness is an attitude and an action that combines kindness and concern for someone with physical and emotional sensitivity. It’s an attitude because it’s how you really feel about someone, but it’s also an action. Gentleness has to be shown in action for it be gentleness.

 

You see this with a mother comforting a child with a skinned knee. She bandages the knee in kindness, she shows concern with physical touch, stroking his hair, and soothing words help him cope emotionally.

 

You also see this gentleness with a friend, listening to the grieving of another. There’s kindness in just being willing to listen. There’s a physical connection with eye contact, or perhaps they are sitting side by side on a park bench. There’s emotional sensitivity with words like, “I hurt with you” or the like.

 

Gentleness is an attitude and an action that combines kindness and concern for someone with physical and emotional sensitivity.

 

Why should we be gentle? First, because we see gentleness in our Creator and Savior.

 

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