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Sunday, July 21, 2024

Resurrection Energy for Our Ache

Audio Transcript

Welcome again to the podcast. On Monday, final time, we checked out a duality at work in our Bible studying, of how God encourages us after which warns us. There’s a wholesome steadiness of encouragement and warning that we’d like within the Christian life, and we get that balanced weight loss program as we learn by way of the complete Bible as a complete. And that leads us properly into one thing else we’re going to encounter within the Bible as we learn, and we’re really going to come across this collectively over the subsequent two days within the Navigators Bible Studying Plan.

We’re going to be studying collectively Philippians 3:8–11. As we do, it jogs my memory of a pair errors to keep away from within the Christian life, particularly about our valuable Savior, Jesus Christ. One mistake is to easily emphasize him because the victor — because the King who’s enthroned in heaven, resurrected, shining, sovereign over the universe, triumphant. Then again, we will overemphasize Jesus as sufferer — because the struggling servant, solely because the bleeding Lamb who died for us on the cross. In Philippians 3:8–11, Paul holds collectively each of those wonderful realities — of Christ’s weak spot and his energy — after which he braids them collectively into our expertise of the Christian life. It’s a outstanding instance of theology in software, as Paul needs us to expertise Christ in “the ability of his resurrection” as we “share his sufferings, turning into like him in his dying.” In different phrases, we expertise his victorious energy not by escaping the struggling of this life, however by enduring the struggling of this life. Pastor John, do what you accomplish that nicely, and simply stroll us by way of this textual content and clarify how Paul pulls this off.

In 1992, I listened to one in every of J. Oswald Sanders’s final messages. He was 89 and an incredible missionary statesman. He advised the story of an indigenous missionary who walked barefoot from village to village, preaching the gospel in India. After many miles, he involves a sure village, he tries to talk the gospel, however he’s spurned by the leaders and the folks on this village. So, discouraged, exhausted, he goes to the sting of the village and lies down underneath a tree and sleeps.

When he wakes up, the entire city was gathered to listen to him. And the pinnacle man of the village defined that that they had come out whereas he was asleep to take a look at him, they usually noticed his blistered ft. And so they concluded that he have to be a holy man and that that they had been fallacious to reject him, they usually had been sorry they usually needed to listen to the message that he was keen to endure a lot to convey them.

Upside-Down Logic of Salvation

Now, that sort of story will be repeated many times within the historical past of the church as Christians fulfill Colossians 1:24, which says that we full in our personal sufferings what was missing within the afflictions of Christ — particularly, a private, particular person, flesh-and-blood presentation in our personal our bodies, our personal struggling, of the love of Christ and the ability of Christ. So, from the start of Christianity within the ministry of Jesus to this very day, folks have failed to acknowledge what I might name (and also you’ve identified now in Philippians) the dear upside-down logic of salvation — particularly, that energy comes by way of weak spot. The facility of Christ comes by way of our weak spot, and salvation comes by way of our struggling.

“Jesus was capable of save others despite their sin as a result of he refused to avoid wasting himself despite his righteousness.”

Do you bear in mind the chief monks as they noticed Jesus hanging on the cross? They mocked him and mentioned, “He saved others; he can not save himself” (Matthew 27:42). What they did not see, and so many individuals fail to spot it at the moment, is that it was exactly by refusing to avoid wasting himself that Jesus was capable of save others. Or to say it one other method, Jesus was capable of save others despite their sin as a result of he refused to avoid wasting himself despite his righteousness.

As you mentioned, Tony, this weaving collectively of weak spot and energy, struggling and salvation is carried proper by way of the Bible. And Christ suffered to not spare us on this life our struggling, however to point out us the best way to endure, to offer us energy to endure — and in our struggling to expertise the triumph of his salvation, each for ourselves and for others by way of struggling.

Understanding Christ in Two Methods

Let’s learn it after which make a few feedback. That is Philippians 3:8–11:

I depend all the things as loss due to the surpassing price of understanding Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I’ve suffered the lack of all issues and depend them as garbage, so that I could achieve Christ and be present in him, not having a righteousness of my very own that comes from the legislation, however that which comes by way of religion in Christ, the righteousness from God that is dependent upon religion — that I could know him . . .

Pause. So, now that he’s clothed with a righteousness from God that’s not his personal — by being in Christ, having union with Christ — Paul says that, with this already-salvation that he’s tasted (as being clothed with the righteousness of God in Christ), he says his goal is to know God or to know Christ in two methods.

And right here they arrive. First, that I could know “the ability of his resurrection.” And second, that I “could share his sufferings, turning into like him in his dying” — in different phrases, “that I could know a share of his sufferings in my very own life” — “that by any means attainable I could attain the resurrection from the lifeless.”

So, Paul put collectively these two nice Christian aspirations: “I wish to know his energy, the sort of energy that raises the lifeless, and I wish to dwell and minister in that energy. And I wish to embrace a lifetime of sacrifice and struggling as God wills within the service of his mission: the salvation of sinners, the build up of the church.”

Our Dying, Your Life

What confuses lots of people and creates the prosperity gospel is that the one conception we have now, many people, of resurrection energy is that after all it should maintain Paul from struggling. That’s what energy is for, proper? What else is resurrection energy for besides to guard us and maintain us from struggling?

And the reply isn’t any, that’s not the best way. It’s the wrong way up. Not on this life for Christians dwelling for the salvation of others — that’s not what resurrection energy is principally for. The facility of Jesus was not used to flee the cross. And in Paul’s life and our lives, the current energy of the resurrection provides life to different folks by way of our sacrifices. After which, ultimately, Paul hopes by way of that to achieve the resurrection from the lifeless.

So, right here’s an illustration of how this labored in Paul’s life. That is 2 Corinthians 4:8–10, 12:

We’re in each method, however not crushed; perplexed, however not pushed to despair; persecuted, however not forsaken; struck down, however not destroyed; at all times carrying within the physique the dying of Jesus, in order that the lifetime of Jesus can also be manifested in our our bodies. . . . So dying is at work in us, however life in you.

In different phrases, Paul’s struggling, his carrying the dying of Jesus in his scars, is the best way the ability of the resurrection introduced life to different folks. “Dying is working in us; life is working in you — by way of our struggling, by way of our sacrifices.” The facility of the resurrection didn’t maintain Paul from sacrifices. It turned his sacrifices into manifestations of life-giving energy within the salvation of sinners. And as he mentioned in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “[Christ’s] energy is made excellent in [my] weak spot.”

What Wins Folks to Christ

Everyone knows that is true after we give it some thought, simply from our personal expertise. Folks don’t fall in love with the price and wonder and greatness of Jesus as a result of they have a look at wealthy, wholesome, comfy Christians. They don’t. If that’s all they see, why wouldn’t they only conclude that we dwell for a similar worldly issues they do? If that produces conversion, it’s not conversion to Jesus, however to more cash. What wins folks to the infinite magnificence and value of Jesus is that they see folks for whom Jesus is so valuable that they’re keen to endure struggling to observe him.

So, when Paul says in Philippians 3:10, “I wish to know him in these two methods: his energy that provides life and his sufferings that value life,” he wasn’t confused. He had been mastered and fashioned by Jesus, who saved us along with his all-powerful energy by way of struggling and dying.

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