The Friends I Keep & The Way I live Don't Matter
Hebrews 13:7-9 (NKJV)
Remember those who rule over you, who have spoken the word of God to you, whose faith follow, considering the outcome of their conduct. 8 Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, and forever. 9 Do not be carried about with various and strange doctrines. For it is good that the heart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those who have been occupied with them.
Considered conduct turns into conformed conduct over time! Erosion & construction both take time!
Change! We are consistently changing something. Your underwear, the trash bag in your house, your looks, a product, your opinion, your body (some more than others - consistent change is a constant and it's fleeting!
Luke 24:13-33 (NKJV)
Now behold, two of them were traveling that same day to a village called Emmaus, which was seven miles from Jerusalem. 14 And they talked together of all these things which had happened. 15 So it was, while they conversed and reasoned, that Jesus Himself drew near and went with them. 16 But their eyes were restrained, so that they did not know Him. 17 And He said to them, “What kind of conversation is this that you have with one another as you walk and are sad?” 18 Then the one whose name was Cleopas answered and said to Him, “Are You the only stranger in Jerusalem, and have You not known the things which happened there in these days?" 19 And He said to them, “What things?” So they said to Him, “The things concerning Jesus of Nazareth, who was a Prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people, 20 and how the chief priests and our rulers delivered Him to be condemned to death, and crucified Him. 21 But we were hoping that it was He who was going to redeem Israel. Indeed, besides all this, today is the third day since these things happened. 22 Yes, and certain women of our company, who arrived at the tomb early, astonished us. 23 When they did not find His body, they came saying that they had also seen a vision of angels who said He was alive. 24 And certain of those who were with us went to the tomb and found it just as the women had said; but Him they did not see.” 25 Then He said to them, “O foolish ones, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken! 26 Ought not the Christ to have suffered these things and to enter into His glory?” 27 And beginning at Moses and all the Prophets, He expounded to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself. 28 Then they drew near to the village where they were going, and He indicated that He would have gone farther. 29 But they constrained Him, saying, “Abide with us, for it is toward evening, and the day is far spent.” And He went in to stay with them. 30 Now it came to pass, as He sat at the table with them, that He took bread, blessed and broke it, and gave it to them. 31 Then their eyes were opened and they knew Him; and He vanished from their sight. 32 And they said to one another, “Did not our heart burn within us while He talked with us on the road, and while He opened the Scriptures to us?” 33 So they rose up that very hour and returned to Jerusalem
Luke 24:44-49;52 (NKJV)
Then He said to them, “These are the words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things must be fulfilled which were written in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms concerning Me.” 45 And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures. 46 Then He said to them, “Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day, 47 and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem. 48 And you are witnesses of these things. 49 Behold, I send the Promise of My Father upon you; but tarry in the city of Jerusalem until you are endued with power from on high... 52 And they worshiped Him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy,
I know this to be true...
THERE IS GREAT JOY IN THE CHAOS WHEN YOU KNOW GOD IS WITH YOU IN IT & HE'S PLACED HIS COMMUNITY AROUND YOU THROUGH IT
The disciples learned in their afternoon with Jesus:
NONE OF THE CHANGES WE EXPERIENCE CHANGES THE MISSION GOD HAS US ON – & THAT WE NEED COMMUNITY TO ACCOMPLISH IT
These disciples were faced with different shades of change after Jesus died:
• Do I let the world force me back to my old life, friends, and old ways?
• Do I quit what Jesus said we should do and do my own thing?
• Do I give my life to the mission Jesus said even though I don't see him anymore?
What do we do? Before we look at that I want to look at some scripture to set the tone!
1 Corinthians 15:33 (ESV)
Do not be deceived: “Bad company ruins good morals.
Proverbs 13:20 (NLT)
Walk with the wise and become wise; associate with fools and get in trouble.
Matthew 24:4 (ESV)
And Jesus answered them, “See that no one leads you astray.
PICK THE RIGHT SHADE OF CHANGE & FRIENDS THAT ARE ROWING IN THE SAME DIRECTION
The different shades of change:
• Your friends change you (Your behavior) STORY OF WHEN I WAS A KID AND MY BEST FRIEND STARTED TO CHANGE
• The world changes you (the populous sets your standard, your focus, and your beliefs)
• Situations change you (fear drives your decisions, you try to make things happen for yourself)
• God changes you (He sets your heart at peace, sets your standards, your focus, your beliefs, your behavior)
The choice is ours
• There is “decide” and there is “default”
• No choice is a choice
We allow change. Either we allow God to change us or we let the world change us... the friends we keep shape the decision we make
• Rarely are we ever stagnant
Change isn't bad but how do we choose the "GOD CHANGES YOU" option... Glad you asked!
LET THE SAVIOR CHANGE YOU NOT SOCIETY - BUT CHOOSE WISELY THE SUPPORT SYSTEM
Colossians 2:6-10 (NLT)
And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. 7 Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness. 8 Don’t let anyone capture you with empty philosophies and high-sounding nonsense that come from human thinking and from the spiritual powers of this world, rather than from Christ. 9 For in Christ lives all the fullness of God in a human body. 10 So you also are complete through your union with Christ, who is the head over every ruler and authority.
The crazier things get in this world the deeper we dig in - But we need to keep our circle small
When things go south we know God stays the same - But are we surrounded by a friend group that understands God the same?
Luke 24:33-34 (NKJV)
32 And they said to one another, “Did not our heart burn within us while He talked with us on the road, and while He opened the Scriptures to us?” 33 So they rose up that very hour and returned to Jerusalem
Let's be Christ followers with HeartBurn!
Let's let His word burn in our Hearts so much that we are on fire for His mission. While choosing friends that will be fire accelerants & not fire fighters!
THE WORLD CANNOT CHANGE THE ONE WHO IS CAPTURED BY JESUS PLUS NOTHING
WE NEED FRIENDS WHO LIVE IN THE SAME PLUS NOTHING ARENA
ONLY JESUS GETS TO SET MY AGENDA, MY MORALS, MY BEHAVIOR, MY ATTITUDE, MY THOUGHTS, MY LIFE
Ephesians 5:1-4 (NLT)
Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children. 2 Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God. 3 Let there be no sexual immorality, impurity, or greed among you. Such sins have no place among God’s people. 4 Obscene stories, foolish talk, and coarse jokes—these are not for you. Instead, let there be thankfulness to God.
HOW DO WE KEEP FROM DRIFTING?
ANCHOR TO HIS WORD NOT THE WORLD - BUT CHECK THE LINKS IN THE CHAIN
2 Corinthians 4:16-18 (NKJV)
Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. 17 For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, 18 while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.
We are not to live life thinking only about today and what pleasures we can have - instead we live life in view of eternity wanting to live in a way that honors God.
But are our friends a weak link only wanting the things this world offers?
Situations may change but Gods promises always remain
• The promises are always rooted by the character of the one giving it
• God has never lied and he won’t start with you.
• When the world is actively freaking out we remain unmoved because we’re anchored by the promises of God
Maybe you are here this morning and you can say my life looks more like a reflection fo the world than it does Jesus. Maybe you know in your heart you've anchored your life to the world's ways (either by choice or influence of friends) and not God's ways according to His word. That feeling in your heart is the Holy Spirit prompting you right now to make the right shade of change and give your life to Jesus so He can change you to look more like Him. Will you make the change right now? If you'd like to I need you to raise your hand in surrender to Him!