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THREE KEYS OF THE FAITH


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THREE†† KEYS†† OF†† THE†† FAITH

 

The Kingdom of God, what is it like?

There once was a man Mughul Ruler of India who was invited to visit England by Queen Victoria.

††††††††††† The story goes that he was a proud man from a wonderful kingdom of his own.

When he arrived on the shores of England he was expecting to impress this little island kingdom with his magnificence.

He was met by a beautiful carriage, which proceeded to carry him from the port town to the center of London and the awaiting Queen.

As the Ruler rode along they soon came to the outskirts of the city.

††††††††††† He was expecting a short ride.

But hour mounted upon hour and the ride continued.

After many hours the carriage arrived in the heart of the great city.

But in the seat occupied by the Ruler sat a man, whose self-importance had diminished, having sensed for himself the greatness of the British Empire by the massive size of itís Capitol, London.

††††††††††† It was a lesson in GRACE.

 

The reality of Godís Kingdom is that it is massive and regal.

††††††††††† For us to hope to operate happily in it, we must be changed.

 

There are three Keys that help us as we proceed into the Kingdom of God.

And they all three center on GRACE

††††††††††† We are born in Grace.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† We grow in Grace.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† And we minister Grace.

 

I.A New Birth by Godís Grace is the key of entering Godís Kingdom.

 

††††††††††† 1.†† Note the Pharisee and the Publican

Luke 18:9 And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others:

10 Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.

11 The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men [are], extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† 12 I fast twice in the week, I give tithes of all that I possess.

13 And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as [his] eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.

14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified [rather] than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.

 

2.      Thief on the Cross - Grace alone can account for this manís salvation.

a.                   ďThis day shalt thou be with me in paradise.Ē

b.                  His only blackeeming act was to ask for the Saviour to ďrememberĒ him when He enteblack into His Kingdom.

c.                   And the Lord bestowed upon this man His GRACE.

 

††††††††††† 3.†† We are saved by Grace.

Eph 1:6†† To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved.

Eph 2:8-9†† For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.

 

††††††††††† But here is a secret:God cannot withhold His grace.He loves mankind.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† 1.We have a dog named ďBOBOĒ at home - he is in need of grace.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† We decide if he is fed, if he stays, if he lives.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† But, I love my dog.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† I will not let him starve.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† That would break my heart.

 

††††††††††† ††††††††††† 2.In our Salvation

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† God created us, then we fell into sin.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† It was our choice to reject God.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† How could we ever return to His favor?

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† We were in need of grace.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† God by His Grace made a way.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† Because of His Grace, He sent His Son to die for our sin.

 

††††††††††† By GRACE are ye saved!!

††††††††††† ††††††††††† Remember, it is Godís plan!

If we turn to Him, there is no way He wonít save us.

 

††††††††††† Grace is the key to Salvation.

 

II.Growth is the key to fellowship with God.

1 Pet 2:2 as newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:

 

††††††††††† 1.God speaks through Bible Study, Church, Sunday School.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† a.Or He speaks through Trials and Testings and Chastening.

††††††††††† 2.God wants His children to grow!

††††††††††† ††††††††††† Paul said to the Corinthians

I Corinthians 3:1 And I, brethren, could not speak unto you as unto spiritual, but as unto carnal, [even] as unto babes in Christ.(2) I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able [to bear it], neither yet now are ye able.

 

I Corinthians 3:16 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and [that] the Spirit of God dwelleth in you?(17) If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which [temple] ye are.

 

†††† Yes, God loves His baby Christians

††††††††††† ††††††††††† He will patiently wait for growth.

††††††††††† Mothers are known for the great love they have for her Babies.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† They will do all to nurture their babyís growth.

††††††††††† I've seen Babies who haven't grown

††††††††††† ††††††††††† Iíve seen a 20 yr old, lying in a crib with diapers and bottle.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† It is a pitiful sight.

 

†††† If a Christian is not in church he's not going to grow right.

Eph 4:11 ††And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; (Office of the church)

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† 12††††††††††† For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† (It is a job that is requiblack to be done, to grow Christians)

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Ill. Some think, ďWhy does the pastor hand out so much work?Ē

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††††††††† ďHeís the one we pay to do the work of the church.Ē

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† ††††† Listen to me; Members have much to do in the local church.

1.      They must attend, every possible service.

2.      They must tithe, faithfully giving of what God has given them.

3.      They must take a part in the ministry, finding Godís will.

4.      They must be witnesses about the Lord, this will always be Godís will.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† 13††††††††††† Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ:

(By the time we get to heaven we should have grown in our knowledge of Christ.We wonít have any more of the knowledge of God in heaven than we have learned here on earth and experienced on our entry into heaven.)

 

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† 14††††††††††† That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† 15††††††††††† But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:

It would be Sad to see us all arrive in heaven, still babies.

 

††††††††††† Turn with me:

2 Pet 3:18 But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever.

 

††††††††††† ††††††††††† Our lives are intended to bring GLORY to God.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† This is the aim of this Church, To GLORIFY God.

††††††††††† We must GROW in GRACE.

 

Grace brings us Salvation, and it also brings us growth as Christians.

 

III.The Gospel is the key to Service to God.

 

†††† Love and Grace

††††††††††† 1.God has commanded us to love our neighbor as ourselves.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† They will know that we are Christians by our love.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Helping people is normal for us.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† We are taught to be kind.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† We are to be like our Lord.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† But too many Christians stop there.

 

††††††††††† 2.God has commanded us to witness.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† God's purpose for our helping people is to teach them the Gospel.

††††††††††† Mark 16:15†† And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

††††††††††† Phil 1:3†† I thank my God upon every remembrance of you,4. Always in every prayer of mine for you all making request with joy,5. For your fellowship in the gospel from the first day until now;

 

a.                   First, How many of your neighbors know you are a Christian by your love?

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Think about it.

b.                  Now, how many of them have heard the gospel from you?

 

††††††††††† We are commanded to teach people the gospel.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† But, you say, I am not trained.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† How long have you been saved?

How long do you think you need to learn it well enough to teach someone else?

††††††††††† ††††††††††† The moment you are saved- God gives you a desire to tell others.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Tell them your testimony.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Tell them how much God means to you.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Tell them what God has done for them, if they will turn to Him!

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Donít let them avoid the Gospel.

 

†††† Obedience to God's command drives:

††††††††††† 1. Missions††††††††††

††††††††††† ††††††††††† Missionaries are sent around the world.

††††††††††† 2.Local Churches

††††††††††† ††††††††††† The machinery that turns - turns by the Gospel

††††††††††† ††††††††††† Not the social gospel - but a concern for souls.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† People are the same everywhere,

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† They like some attention,

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† They like people to pay attention to them, and

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† We want to do that.

††††††††††† ††††††††††† We want to help them, how simple.

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Many will come because we will take the time to help them.

††††††††††† 3.The Christian

††††††††††† ††††††††††† How disappointing it would be to receive the Salvation of God,

††††††††††††††††††††††† ††††††††††† Then not have a part in His work.

 

Conclusion:

††††††††††† Have you been born of Grace?††††††††††† Or are you working your way?†† Refusing to accept.

††††††††††† Are you growing in Grace?††††††††††† ††††††††††† Or are you stubborn and proud?Refusing to yield.

††††††††††† Are you ministering by Grace?††††††††††† Or do you excuse yourself?Refusing to give the Gospel.

 

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