Christianity: Plain & Simple

Preached by Pastor Art Kohl
September 19, 2004

Bible Text:

1 John 5:20, “And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.”

Introduction:

Some people think Christianity is going to church every Sunday. Some think it’s baptism, some think it’s burning candles and saying prayers, or doing sacraments, or taking communion, or reading the Bible, or a religious activity.

Christianity is a Person: Jesus Christ. You may be a believer, who trusted Christ as Saviour, but if your life is not about that Person, you are not a Christian. Here are three simple points about Christianity. What must a person do to become a Christian?

1. You Need to Meet God.

There is a problem with that because we are sinners. But Jesus has provided a bridge to cross the gulf our sins have made. 1 John 5:11,12 makes this clear: “And this is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He that hath the Son hath life; and he that hath not the Son of God hath not life.” It doesn’t matter what religion you are. If you have the Son, you have eternal life. If you don’t have the Son, you don’t have eternal life. God wants us to know (not guess or hope) that we have eternal life. 1 John 5:13 says “These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God; that ye may know that ye have eternal life, and that ye may believe on the name of the Son of God.”

2. You Need to Love God.

When a lawyer asked Jesus this question, “Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment.” (Matthew 22:36-38) One of the biggest mistakes churches make is to get new believers to serve God. You can serve someone without loving them.

I find that some people who serve God do it because they think they have to earn God’s love by doing things, rather than resting in His love. They think: if I do this and this and this God will love me. God will love you unconditionally – even if you are so sick you can’t do anything for Him! Stop trying to earn God’s love. God is love. It’s easier to serve someone you love. Our attitude should not be “I serve Jesus because I hope he loves me” it’s “I love Jesus so I serve Him.” What is your motivation for doing what you do? 1 John 5:3, “For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.”

3. You Need to Enjoy God

Psalm 16:11 says, “Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.” How can we enjoy God? By getting to know Him. By learning more about Him you will see just how great He is. How can we get to know God and thereby enjoy Him?

A. By Having Communion With Him

Philippians 3:10, “That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;” Have a conversation with God. He is not some far-off Being. He is with you all the time. Talk to Him!

B. By Listening to Him

Psalms 143:8a “Cause me to hear thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust:” This is done through Bible reading, Bible study, meditation, hearing preaching and counselling, meditation. This is God talking to you. Listen to Him!

C. By Working with Him

Matthew 11:28, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Most people make the mistake of working for God, and not with Him. That’s how they get burnt out.

Conclusion:

God is not some cosmic Killjoy who doesn’t want you to have any fun. He loves you and wants you to enjoy your Christian life! Get to know Jesus and you will have more joy and peace than you have ever had in your life.

Copyright © 2004
Permission granted to freely copy.
Scripture verses are from the King James Holy Bible.

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