For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome. 1 John 5:3. His commands are not weighty, instead they are freedom. Jesus says, “If you love me, you will keep my commands” John 14:15. Many see obedience like giving someone a piggy back ride, a burden and tiresome. But where the spirit of the LORD is, there is freedom and the only burden we have in life is trying to do it on our terms. Jesus never said life was going to be easy but he did offer to take our burdens (Matthew 11:30).
Last night we answered the question, “How does a New Believer Grow?” I stressed the importance of discipling for life transformation rather than filling heads with information. There are so many that consider discipleship and maturity as the same as knowledge. That is, the more one knows, the more mature they are or a stronger disciple they become. That is simply a broken system. Instead the Scriptures promote a doing over hearing strategy. Further, it seems that it would be advantageous to the Kingdom of God to immediately put that kind of Ministry DNA in a new believer.
7 COMMANDS OF CHRIST
Repent, believe and receive the Holy Spirit (regeneration) (Mark 1:15; John 3:16; John 20:22)
Be baptized and live the life that it initiates (ongoing transformation) (Matt. 28:18-20; Rom. 6:1-14; Acts 10:48)
Pray (private and family devotions, intercession and rightly relating to God) (Matthew 6:9-13; John 16:24)
Love God, neighbor, believers, enemies (forgive) (Matt. 5:43-48; 22:36-40; John 13:34-35, Luke 10:25-37)
Make disciples (witness for Jesus, shepherd believers, teach the Word, train leaders, send missionaries) (Matt 28:18-20)
Break bread (The Lord’s Supper) (Matt. 26:26-28; John 4:24; Luke 22:19-20)
Give (stewardship of our time, treasure and talents) (Luke 6:38)
Here is an excerpt from George Patterson a retired church planter that shares the reason why he came up with the 7 Basic Commands of Christ. Is this applicable in our setting today? Is it good for follow up? Hope this is encouraging, stimulating, and motivating.
Keep praying for these. They are the best way to meet neighbors and engage them in spiritual conversations. I have always believed, if you take care of a person’s child, they will appreciate you. We had several wonderful stories happen last week. Our hope is to have some good conversations with the parents as well. We will be asking them if they are interested in showing up at The Gathering or even our LIFE GROUP. I will never forget the boy who said, “Has the Bible come yet?” Oh that we would have that kind of hunger and pursuit of the word of God.
Sure hope your summer is going great. Our Life Groups are hopefully starting to mesh well. Let me encourage you to consider how you might include neighbors who might be interested spiritually. Our Life Groups are not really for us, SOAP is for us. A Life Group’s purpose is for reaching out and making a safe place for newcomers to feel welcome. Let’s work at it.
The messages have been uploaded to iTunes. Simply go to the iTunes store and in the search bar type in 290 Community Church. Subscription to the sermons given at the Gathering are free. If you miss a week and want to stay current, simply go take a listen and be motivated. The Equipped Series are these messages:
Kingdom– This message answered the question, “How does the Kingdom of God grow?”
Empty Fields- This message answered the question, “How do we enter an Empty Field?”
Power of Story pt. 1- This message answered the question, “How do I share my story?”
Power of Story pt. 2- This message answered the question, “How do I share God’s story?”
Maturity- This message answered the question, “How does a New Believer Grow?”
Multiplication- This message (next week) will answer the question, “How does the Church Form and grow?”