Are You A Christian? (Part 2)

Transcript February 14

Introduction

Sunday Service 14th February 2021 Topic: Are You A Christian? (Part 2) Text: 1 Peter 4:12-16. Song: O Jesus I Have Promised. INTRODUCTION Last week, we began this series calling our attention individually and collectively to the need to ask ourselves if we are truly who we think or say we are. The question is “Are You A Christian.” Answering that question, last week we discovered that it was at Antioch of Judea, not Antioch of Pisidia that the early disciples were first called Christians. We also examined three expectations of God from any man or woman who claims to be a Christian. God expects us to be a Growing Christian, Going Christian and a Glowing Christian. A few years ago a group of salesmen attended a regional sales conference in Chicago. They had assured their wives that they would be home on time for Friday night's dinner. In their rush, with tickets and briefcases, one of these salesmen mistakenly kicked over a table which held a display of apples. Apples flew everywhere. Without stopping or looking back, they all managed to reach the plane in time for their nearly-missed boarding. All but one paused, took a deep breath, got in touch with his feelings and had sympathy for the girl whose apple stand had been overturned. He told his friends to go on without him, waved good-bye and told one of them to call his wife when they arrived at their home destination to explain why he’s taking a later flight. Then he returned to the terminal where the apples were. He was glad he did. The 16-year-old girl was totally blind! She was softly crying, tears running down her cheeks in frustration, and at the same time helplessly groping for her spilled apples as the crowd watched with no one stopping, nor care to help her. The salesman knelt on the floor with her, gathered up the apples, put them back on the table and helped organize her display. As he did this, he noticed that many of them had become battered and bruised; these he set aside in another basket. When he had finished, he pulled out his wallet and said to the girl, "here, please take this $40 for the damage we did. Are you okay?" She nodded through her tears. He added, "I hope we didn't spoil your day too badly." As the salesman started to walk away, the bewildered blind girl called out to him, "Mister...." He paused and looked back into those blind eyes. She continued, "are you Jesus?" He stopped in mid-stride and wondered. He gently went back and said, "no, I am nothing like Jesus - He is good, kind, caring, loving, and would never have bumped into your display in the first place." The girl gently nodded: "I only asked because I prayed for Jesus to help me gather the apples. He sent you to help me, so you are like Him - only He knows who will do His will. Thank you for hearing His call, Mister." Then slowly the man made his way to catch the later flight with that question burning and bouncing about in his soul: "Are you Jesus?" The big question is, do people mistake you for Jesus? A Christian is that man that people meet and see a little Christ in him. WHO IS A CHRISTIAN? Today, there are three things to be considered about the man or woman that can be called a Christian. These are, 1. A CONVERTED PERSON - (Matthew 18:3, Acts 3:19.) The Christian is a converted man right from the heart. Conversion is a matter of the heart, the true spirit of repentance. Are you converted? 2. A CHANGED PERSON.(Acts 11:26, 2 Cor. 5:17) The conversion of the heart naturally produces the change in the life of the man that is called a Christian. Without the conversion of the heart, there is no genuine change in the physical and when there is no change in the physical deeds, we need to suspect lack of conversion in the heart. A Christian is a changed man in thoughts and deeds. 3. A COMMITTED PERSON.(Acts 26:28) The conversion of the heart also produces in the Christian a commitment to Christ that cannot be equated to any other. The Christian is the one who has made a definite choice for God in Jesus Christ. He is a man with a definite commitment, a dedication to the Kingdom of God (1 Peter 4:16), a commitment to serve others, a commitment to witness and save others. Are you a Christian? CONCLUSION The Christian is not only converted, but also a changed or transformed person. (Rom. 12:2) The conversion and transformation produces the commitment to give God his or her very best. Several years ago, an article was written about Queen Mary of England, who made it her practice to visit Scotland every year. She was so loved by the people there that she often mingled with them freely without a protective escort. One afternoon while walking with some children, she went out farther than she’d planned. Dark clouds came up unexpectedly, so she stopped at a nearby house to borrow an umbrella. “If you will lend me one,” she said to the lady who answered the door, “I will send it back to you tomorrow.” The woman didn’t recognize the Queen and was reluctant to give this stranger her best umbrella. Then she handed her an old umbrella she intended to throw away. The fabric was torn in several places and one of the ribs was broken. The Queen took the umbrella and went away. The next day a knock was heard at the door. When the lady opened it, she was greeted by a royal guard, who was holding in his hand her old, tattered umbrella. “The Queen sent me,” he said. “She asked me to thank you for loaning her this.” For a moment the woman was stunned, then, she burst into tears. “Oh, what an opportunity I missed,” she cried. “I didn’t give the Queen my very best!” Are you a Christian? If yes, the Lord expects you to give him all of your very best. Shalom.

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