Saturday, November 26, 2011

The Household of God

Here's a little of what I've been learning in my studies for Sunday's sermon. Some "overflow" if you will...

God refers to those who are part of His church as members of His family. And it's part of the Gospel - the Good News - that we are "accepted in the beloved."(Eph 1:6)

There was a time when we were not members of the household of God, but strangers, aliens.

Eph_2:19  So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God,

As “fellow citizens” we are a part of God’s Kingdom, but as Members of His household what are we? We could be servants and be part of the household, but more explicitly we are Children of God.

Rom_8:17  And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.

And how did we become Heirs and children of God?

Tit_3:7  That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life.

And as heirs we are all on the same footing with Christ.

1Pe_3:7  Likewise, husbands, dwell with your wives according to knowledge, giving honor  to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life;

How can we know that we are God’s Children?
One way is:

Rom 8:16  The Spirit itself bears witness with our spirit, that
we are the children of God: 17 And if children,
then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ;

So, the Household of God is also the New Testament Church of God.

 1Ti_3:15  you may know how one ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, a pillar and buttress of the truth.

Jesus also portrayed the church as a family.
To His Disciples early in His ministry:

Mat_5:16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.

Teaching them to pray:
Mat_6:9  Pray then like this: "Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.

After the resurrection:
Joh_20:17  Jesus said … "Do not cling to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to my brothers and say to them, 'I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God.'"

Jesus promises His disciples a Family of God.
Mar 10:29 Jesus said, "Truly, I say to you, there’s no one who has left house or brothers, sisters or mother, father or children or lands, for my sake and the gospel, 30 who will not receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and lands, with persecutions, and in the age to come eternal life.

The Apostle Paul Explains the Family of God is part of one of God’s great mysteries.

Eph_3:6 This mystery is that the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel.

Paul portrays How and Who He chose to be part of His Family!

 Jas_2:5 … my beloved brothers, has not God chosen those who are poor in the world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom, which he promised to those who love him?

Paul also explains how we ought to live as members of the Household of God.
1Ti_3:15  you may know how one ought to behave in the household of God, 

1Pe_4:17 For it is time for judgment to begin at the household of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the outcome for those who don't obey the gospel of God?

Gal_5:13 For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only don’t use freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.

Gal_6:1 Brothers, if anyone is caught in sin, you who are spiritual restore him in a spirit of gentleness.

1Th_5:12 We ask you, brothers, respect those who labor among you, are over you in the Lord and admonish you,

1Th_5:14 we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all.

1Th_5:25 Brothers, pray for us.

2Th_2:15 So then, brothers, stand firm and hold to the traditions you were taught by us, 

2Th_3:6 Now we command you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, keep away from any brother who is walking in idleness and not in accord with the tradition you received from us.

Jas_1:2 Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds,

Jas_1:16 Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers.

Jas_1:19 …my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger;
Jas_2:1 My brothers, show no partiality as you hold the
faith in our Lord Jesus Christ, the Lord of glory.

1Jn_3:16 … he laid down his life for us, and we ought to lay down our lives for the brothers.

1Ti 5:1 Do not rebuke an older man but encourage him as you would a father, younger men as brothersolder women as mothers, younger women as sisters, in all purity. 

 While there are many other Scriptures that describe how we ought to live as followers of Jesus Christ, a significant part of those instructions reflect how members of a family ought to behave. 
We don't have the luxury of saying "It's none of my business" when it is a brother or sister in Christ who needs, prayer, comfort, recognition, admonishment, rebuke, restoration, help, encouragement, service and respect. Why? Because we are members of the same family. The family of Jesus Christ and the Household of God.

So may I encourage you all in the Holiday Season that has so much to do with family visits, don't forget your "Other" family; the one God brought you into.
I'm glad I'm in your family!


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