CHALLENGING THE CHURCH …TO "GO ON TO PERFECTION" (HEBREWS 6:1) - OUR MOTIVATION FOR LIVING
|Written By: Douglas Young Bulletin Date: 12/5/2004
- A. Everywhere we turn, motivational gurus are working their marketing magic. They appeal to the masses, and are a common staple of the diet that produces worldly success.
- Companies send employees to seminars.
- Individuals seek out their books and videos.
- B. I understand that motivation is a key to success.
- C. Motivations can be good and bad, so that which serves as our impetus for living is of importance.
- D. Of all people, the Christian has the most compelling motivation for living.
- It is not society.
- It is not self.
- It is the Saviour and those that have gone on before us.
- I. OUR ENCOURAGEMENT ("so great a cloud of witnesses")
- A. One of the most encouraging texts on faith and faithfulness in all of Scripture (Hebrews 11)
- A list of men and women who lived lives of faith, yet lacked something.
- "And these all, having obtained a good report through faith, received not the promise: God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect"(vv. 39-40).
- B. Their perfection (completeness) was predicated upon Christianity and those that comprise it.
- C. There was a great cloud of witnesses cheering on first century Christians to effectively and faithfully run the Christian race.
- D. The same holds true for us.
- E. Jesus serves as our supreme motivation.
- He is the "author" of our salvation.
- He is our "captain" (Heb. 2:10).
- His sacrifice was on our behalf (1 John 2:1-2).
- There is no greater love than to offer one’s life in another’s stead (John 15:13).
- If this will not motivate us to live to the best of our ability, nothing will.
- II. OUR ENDEAVOR ("run with patience the race set before us")
- A. Life is a race unlike anything else we can imagine. The word "race" in the original language proves it.
- Agona: more than a mere contest. It implies that this race is a battle or conflict.
- We are engaged in a daily spiritual battle (2 Cor. 10:4-6) that must not be taken lightly.
- B. This race is to be run in an efficient way (patience), with one purpose in mind: to win (1 Cor. 9:24-27).
- To settle for second place is to say the race is not worth winning or running.
- No one should want to just complete the race, they should want to win that they might obtain "the prize."
- A heavenly home is that prize, but do we want it enough?
- III. OUR ENEMIES ("every weight, and the sin which doth easily beset us")
- A. Satan is our supreme enemy (1 Pet. 5:8); Christ is our ally and Advocate (1 John 2:1).
- B. Sin is our obstacle in life. It weighs us down. It slows us down, not allowing us to run our course efficiently and effectively.
- C. Many of us are concerned with our physical health and well-being.
- I want to live as long as I can so that I can preach as long as I can.
- I want to live as long as I can so that I can be a good husband.
- I want to live as long as I can so that I can be a good parent.
- But I also understand that life is not all about the physical and that bodily exercise "profiteth little" (1 Tim. 4:8).
- Our primary concern is not to be our physical welfare, but rather our spiritual welfare.
- D. Some of us need to diet and engage in an exercise program of a spiritual type. The admonition in this text is to get into spiritual shape by relieving ourselves of the weight of sin.
- A. God is "the rewarder of them that diligently seek him" (Heb. 11:6).
- B. The "crown" of eternal life, one of incorruption (1 Cor. 9:25) and "righteousness" (2 Tim. 4:8), is one that we should all endeavor to wear.
- C. This is a motivation that transcends any earthly reward. That home in heaven can be yours if you want it badly enough.
|[ Home] [ Back to Articles List ]