Our lives are so brief in the light of eternity. God has given each of us a certain amount of time on this earth. And we are the ones who are responsible for what we do with our lives. The most important decision we will ever make is whether or not we accept Christ as our Savior. I certainly hope that you have made that choice today, if not, I trust that before this day is over you will accept Christ. But that is only the first step in doing what God wants us to do. Jesus Christ wants our lives to count for Him.
The question we must ask ourselves this morning is this: "If our life should end right now, could we look back upon it and see that it has counted for Christ?" Or have we been drifting along, safe and secure in Him, but in reality unconcerned over living our lives to please and honor Him? There are some definite things that we can do that will insure that our lives will count for Christ.
I. Make A Deliberate Commitment To Him.
(Romans 12:1) I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.
A. Present your bodies a living sacrifice - unto God
1. Notice first of all that this is not a suggestion, but rather it is a command of God.
2. And it isn't about our 'spirits' but our bodies!
3. God wants us to make ourselves available for his service.
4. For many of us we would say, but Lord I can't do anything!
5. Moses made all sorts of excuses, but God isn't interested in our excuses.
Is. 6:8, "Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, here am I; send me." 6. God is much more interested in our availability than in our ability! 7. The example of pounding a nail with heel of our shoe (a hammer would work better, but our shoe is available)
B. Too many make shallow commitments to God
1. Emotional decisions simply do not last
2. Because they are a reaction of the flesh
3. How many resolutions were made and have already been abandoned?
4. I am not talking about an emotional decision
5. I am talking about a deliberate commitment!
C. If we want our lives to count for Christ, we must make a deliberate commitment to Him.
(Romans 12:2) And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
1. Note the rest of this verse…
2. How do I know the will of God?
3. By making a deliberate commitment of my life to Him.
4. And we must know God's will in order to fulfill it!
II. Abandon Our Life for Christ.
A. The Lord calls us to Total Surrender
(Matthew 16:25) For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.
1. In other words, if we are to make our lives count for him we must take our hands off.
2. Paul spoke of dying to self in Gal. 2:20, "I am crucified with Christ nevertheless I live..."
3. To live for Christ we must die to our own desires of the flesh.
B. Too often we try to live double lives.
1. Live like the world six days a week then on Sunday we change.
2. But we don't have a part-time Savior!
3. And He doesn't want part-time servants.
4. God wants it alls 24hrs a day 7 days a week.
C. If we want our lives to be full of joy and blessings, then we must live to please Christ and not ourselves.
III. Burn Our Bridges Behind Us.
A. No turning back…
(Psalms 118:27) God is the LORD, which hath shewed us light: bind the sacrifice with cords, even unto the horns of the altar.
1. The idea here is that there is no doubt that what is placed upon the altar will stay there.
2. When we come to the altar to yield our lives to him or to turn something over to Him it must stay there!
3. So many times we come with a burden and we when we leave we take it with us again.
4. We need to make it hard to turn back from God.
B. Some try to serve Christ while still clinging to the things of this world.
1. When I first came to faith in Christ, my flesh didn't want to give up some things.
2. I thought I could still live and do the things I used to do and live for God…but I was wrong!
3. As a result, I lost my testimony with some of my friends…I caused reproach upon the name of Christ.
Jas. 4:4b, "…Whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God"
4. Jesus told his disciples that they could not serve two masters.
5. And neither can we!
C. Burning our bridges sounds extreme.
1. But if we don't make a clean break with the world…
2. The temptation will always be there to turn back..
(Luke 9:62) And Jesus said unto him, No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God.
3. He is not talking about salvation here.
4. The Lord is talking about our service to Him.
5. We can't plow a straight furrow for God while looking back and longing for the world.
6. The enemy tries to convince us that the old life was filled with fun and excitement…but think about it for a moment…that is a lie!
7. After understanding all that Christ did for me, I don't want to turn back.
(John 6:67-68) Then said Jesus unto the twelve, Will ye also go away? Then Simon Peter answered him, Lord, to whom shall we go? thou hast the words of eternal life.
IV. Crown Him Lord of All.
A. Jesus was a servant.
1. He served. the needs of others during His ministry on earth.
2. However, first and foremost, He served God.
(John 6:38) For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.
3. He set forth a wonderful example for all who would follow Him.
4. That path is one of service.
B. True greatness lies in serving others.
1. Jesus said, "It is more blessed to give than to receive..." Ac. 20,35
2. There are two great seas in the Holy Land
a. The Sea of Galilee which is full of life b. The Dead Sea is just that, because it only receives and never gives back.
(Matthew 20:28) Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.
C. Make Him our Lord and become His servant.
1. If Christ rules in our lives, then our lives will count for him
2. If He is our Lord, then we must do what He says.
3. Note two verses with very similar wording.
(Luke 6:46) And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?
(Matthew 7:21a) Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
4. There is much more to it than just calling Him, Lord.
This morning, do you know Christ as Savior? Does our life count for Him? We cannot go back and change the past, but what we do today can change our future. The choice is ours today.