Please remember that sermon notes are meant to act as a guide and may not be exactly what was preached.
My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. – Galatians 2:20 NLT
IF you are following Christ, if you are living by faith in Christ who loves you and gave Himself up for you because of the Father’s love for you, then the works of the flesh listed in 5:19-21 have been crucified with Christ Jesus. But if 20 years ago you had a moment of belief and raised your hand, or even walked to the front and knelt at the altar, but went right back to doing as you always have, living as you have always lived, then you have not crucified the flesh; you are still dead in your sin and separated from God.
Salvation is not a one time thing; it is not just accepting Christ as your Lord and Savior with a short walk, short prayer, or a raised hand from the back of the church’s building! It is daily being Spirit led, keeping in step with the Spirit as you walk with Him in obedience to God, “Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure” (Philippians 2:12-13).
We are to be actively pursuing obedience, constantly seeking to grow in our relationship with God and His church. The Holy Spirit is, in each of His Children, enabling and empowering and working in you to will and work for His good pleasure. We are to “press on,” “straining forward” towards the goal of Christ likeness (Philippians 3:12-16).
This happens as you walk by, are being led by, living by, and keeping in step with the Spirit. There is change, new life; you are not who you were. If you have not changed, if there has been no growth, no working out your salvation, then are you being led by the Spirit?
When you keep in step with the Spirit then there is more fruit of the Spirit in your life. More love, more joy, more peace, more patience, more kindness, more goodness, more faithfulness, more gentleness, and more self-control. Those things are grown as we love one another within the body of Christ.
Bear one anothers burdens…
Then the Lord said to Cain, “Where is Abel your brother?” He said, “I do not know; am I my brother’s keeper?” – Genesis 4:9
When you are tempted to criticize the one “caught” in sin, you must remember that God loves them and that you are called to love them as Jesus loves you and to restore them in a spirit of gentleness.
Restoration comes with no strings attached, with the unconditional love of God that has been poured into the hearts of His Children through the Holy Spirt who has been given to lead, enable, and empower us to live the crucified life!
If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. – John 4:20
“No offense committed against you is so heinous that God’s love cannot enable you to forgive!
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” – 1 John 1:9
Test your own work, “Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test” (2 Corinthians 13:5). Is your love in the Lord growing? “Am I more loving, patient, self-controlled, kind—Christlike? (Fruit of the Spirit).
But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. For he looks at himself (examines themselves) and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing. – James 1:22-25
If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. – John 14:15-17
We love because he first loved us. – 1 John 4:19
Why are we told to “bear one anthers burdens,” then told that each one will bear His own load?
We must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, so that each of us may receive what is due us for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad. – 2 Corinthians 5:10
Jesus said “The word that I have spoken will judge him on the last day.”
- Has your old self been crucified with Christ?
- Have you experienced the Love of God?
- Is your life the proof of God’s love?
- When was the last time you examined your life in light of God’s love?
Further Reading: Galatians 2:20, John 13:34-35, John 14:15, Romans 8:28-29, Romans 5:1-11, 1 Corinthians 11:28-32 (the Body), 2 Corinthians 13:5, Colossians 2:12, 1 John 1:9, 3, 1 John 4:7-21, 2 Corinthians 5:14
“Extra Credit”; Spiritual growth: Ephesians 4:13-16, Colossians 1:9-10, Hebrews 5:12-14, Hebrews 6:1, 1 Peter 2:2-3, 2 Peter 1:5-8, 2 Peter 3:18