A sermon for the Watford church of Christ

A sermon for the Watford church of Christ

A sermon for the Watford church of Christ

Introduction, vv1-2
“more and more” – No complacency; Room for growth; spurring them on – in Jesus

  1. God-Pleasing Purity, vv3-8

QUESTION: When you think of purity, what comes to mind?
Immorality was as part of the culture then as now. Expected, allowed. “Continence was regarded as an unreasonable demand on a man.” Leon Morris NICOTNT
“Pagan temples regularly doubled as brothels, and sexual practices of all sorts were at least tolerated if not actively encouraged within the society as a whole.” Wright, Everyone
Porneia – any sexual activity outside marriage

A. Flee
“Flee from sexual immorality. All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body. Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honour God with your bodies.” (1 Corinthians 6:18–20 NIV11)
Who reacted like this? Joseph – (Genesis 39:11-12 NIV11)

B. Self-control
Self-control – about habits, not instances
‘passionate’ – not violent sense, but carried along as if a passive participant, overmastering desire. “The God-empowered man rules his body.”

QUESTION: What is the difference between a rule and a conviction?

‘a holy life’ – it is possible? Reassuring! We breath ‘holy air’.
If sinned recently or in past, point is not to feel judged, or to stay in guilt – point is to deepen conviction

Love connection: ‘the pagans, who do not know God’: Gentiles. Link between ignorance of God and sexual promiscuity and laxity.
We know him, we love him, we love what he loves – in this case, purity

  1. God-Pleasing Love, vv9-12
    ‘taught’ – theodidaktoi. ‘God-taught’? Only time in NT. It is not just that we are learning, but that God is (actively) teaching. Made up by Paul?

God-taught: ““This is the covenant I will make with the people of Israel after that time,” declares the LORD. “I will put my law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people.” Jer 31.33-34

A. More and more
Urge – more and more – increase and overflow (3:12)
Beyond local church

B. Take responsibility
To bless others
Not idle, nor dependant
Quiet life – not anxious and spending time and energy about things cannot control
Work – expecting second coming? Evangelism is more important?!
win respect

Purity and love marked Christians out in those times. Same today?
Question: What makes it clear we are Christians to other people even if we do not tell them?
Question: What helps your purity? Do your friends know?
Question: What inspires you to love others such that you are a blessing to them, not a burden?

Jesus was pure and gave himself to purify us
1 Cor 6:20

Please add your comments on this week’s topic. We learn best when we learn in community.

Do you have a question about teaching the Bible? Is it theological, technical, practical? Send me your questions or suggestions. Here’s the email: malcolm@malcolmcox.org.

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“Worship the LORD with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.” (Psalms 100:2 NIV11)

God bless, Malcolm