Resurrection Power

“If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.” (Romans 8:11, ESV)

The resurrection of Jesus guarantees new life for us.

Generally speaking, life after death is what I believe most of us think of when the resurrection comes to mind. Every year at Easter we are reminded of the fact that our Lord overcame death, and therefore, we who believe in Him will overcome death as well. For the Christian, death is not the end, but a transition.

But is that all the resurrection guarantees us?

Peppered throughout the New Testament are many more benefits of the resurrection than life after death. That’s not to diminish the gift of eternal life by any means! That is the supreme goal to which we look forward to -- spending eternity with God face-to-face! This is the “fullness of joy” the psalmist wrote about:

“in your presence there is fullness of joy;” (Psalm 16:11, ESV)

The resurrection guarantees us other benefits in this life. They are a foretaste of the life to come. And they help us on our journey to becoming more like Christ till He resurrects us to finally be like Him. One such benefit Paul speaks of in Romans 8:11 is to “give life to your mortal bodies through the Spirit.”

On the one hand, this obviously means life after death as well. Those who have the Spirit of Christ “belong to him” (8:9). Though our bodies are “mortal” and will die, the Spirit will “give life” to them when we’re raised.

But on the other hand, the “mortality” and “death” Paul speaks of in this paragraph is caused by our relationship to sin: “the body is dead because of sin” (8:10). As he said in Ephesians: “And you were dead in [your] trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1).

So what kind of “life” does Paul mean by “the Spirit … will also give life” to us?

Righteous life. In the next verse Paul concludes that we are not obligated to live according to our sinful flesh. Rather, we are to “put to death the deeds of the body” by means of the Spirit. The result? “You will live” (8:12-13).

The resurrection not only guarantees eternal life after death, but a righteous life now.

“... the Spirit gives life because of righteousness.” (8:10)

So then, my brothers and sisters, let us live in true resurrection power; let us live a new life marked by killing sin & living in righteousness.

- Pastor Jonathan

What Happens on Sunday…

what happens on sunday
 
You know how the rest of that phrase goes if you’ve ever seen those famous TV commercials. Typically it involves the flashing lights of Las Vegas, a crazy weekend full of bad choices, and the loss of lots of money. The commercial concludes: “What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas.”

Sometimes we treat church like a trip to Vegas.

Obviously not because we have spent the weekend making poor -- even sinful -- choices, throwing our money away in hopes of gaining more. We definitely don’t have the flashing lights 24/7 either. And despite my best efforts, Stan won’t impersonate Elvis.

But we do have a habit of leaving Sunday on Sunday. We leave church at the door on our way out to our cars. We don’t think about the sermon, the worship music, the Scripture and prayers beyond the 10:30 a.m. time slot on Sundays. Doing so lets whatever God said to us fall on deaf ears. “What happens on Sunday, stays on Sunday” is not what it means to be a disciple of Jesus. A nominal Christian and church-goer, yes. But not a devoted follower.
john
 
Treating church like a trip to Vegas means we’re the wrong kind of soil. In Matthew 13 Jesus told the parable of the sower. In this parable the seed is the 
 
Word of God preached. The soil is the type of person (be it ears, heart, etc.) upon which the Word fell. If what happens on Sunday stays on Sunday, then we prove to be either the rocky soil or thorny soil. The rocky soil receives the Word with joy, but has no root. When times get tough and persecution comes, he or she falls away. The thorny soil hears the Word, but the cares of the world or the deceitfulness of money and possessions choke the Word out. Both result in no fruit.
 
But I want you to bear fruit.

There are three things we have in play to keep what happens on Sunday from staying on Sunday. First, each Sunday you’re given reflection questions in
your worship guide to help you meditate and study the sermon passage throughout the week. Take those home, re-read the passage, review any notes you took, and answer each question. You can do this by yourself, with your family, or with some church friends or a 
whats a christianD-Group.
 
Second, on Wednesday nights we discuss those questions together, applying Sunday’s message to our lives. If you’ve never come to our Bible Study & prayer time on Wednesdays, you’re missing out! It’s a sweet time of fellowship, and a fruitful time of discussing God’s Word together.

Third -- and this is a new one -- we have RightNow Media. I’ve just added a channel called “Sermon Series Extras” on our church’s RightNow Media page. 
 
You can type this address in your web browser to go straight there: bit.ly/fbcwpRightNow. You’ll be prompted to sign in. When you scroll down you’ll see these studies (one for adults, one for kids). If you haven’t created your free account, contact me so we can get you access to these 
resources. 

Don’t let what happens on Sunday stay on Sunday.

- Pastor Jonathan
Clicky