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DO THE WORK!

Sunday, October 14, 2018

Week 4 - For our City

WELCOME & VISION OF SERMON SERIES

Welcome to the Empowered Living Church (The ELC). Today, we are celebrating our first church anniversary! Thank you for being a part of God's victory. Today, we start a three week series on Service is Building God's Kingdom. We will spend the next few weeks examining what it means to serve, lead, and build. Our objective is to save souls, make disciples, and build God's kingdom.

BIG IDEA

Will you do the work and build this sanctuary called the Empowered Living Church with us?

KEY SCRIPTURE - 1 Chronicles 28:8-10 (NIV)

8 “So now I charge you in the sight of all Israel and of the assembly of the LORD, and in the hearing of our God: Be careful to follow all the commands of the LORD your God, that you may possess this good land and pass it on as an inheritance to your descendants forever. 9 “And you, my son Solomon, acknowledge the God of your father, and serve him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind, for the LORD searches every heart and understands every desire and every thought. If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will reject you forever.

10 Consider now, for the LORD has chosen you to build a house as the sanctuary. Be strong and do the work.”

THE SETTING

King David called together all the leaders of Israel—including heads of government agency, military leaders, bankers, property managers, and the wealth managers that worked for him and his sons, and everyone who held responsible positions in the kingdom. 

King David stood tall and said: “Listen to me, my people: I fully intended to build a permanent structure for the Ark of the Covenant of God, God’s footstool.

 

What is the Ark of the Covenant?

The ark of the covenant was a sacred chest made by the ancient Israelites according to the command and design of God. It housed and protected “the Testimony,” the Ten Commandments written on two stone tablets.  

 

What was the Purpose.  The Ark was an archive for sacred items that would remind the Israelites of the covenant, or agreement, that God had made with them at Mount Sinai. It also played a key role in the Atonement Day ceremony. Only the high priest could enter the compartment called the Holy of Holies located behind a sacred vail, one day each year on Atonement Day, and see the Ark. After the Solomon’s Temple was built the Ark was moved to the Most Holy in Solomon’s Temple.

 

Let’s get back to the examining the setting of the story.

 

But when I got ready to build it, God said to me, ‘You may not build a house to honor me—you’ve done too much fighting—killed too many people.’ From all of David’s sons God chose Solomon to become King of Israel (God’s Chosen People). The Lord God told David that he chose Solomon to build His temple . . . His house . . . His church. As such, God also adopted Solomon and became His father. God promised that Solomon’s kingdom would last as long as he continued to be strong-minded in doing everything God commanded and carried out His decisions. 

 

This is where we continue the lesson from God in verse eight where it reads . . .

TEACHING POINTS / THOUGHTS TO BUILD ON

1) Follow All Commands


1 Chronicles 28:8 ~ “So now I charge you in the sight of all Israel and of the assembly of the LORD, and in the hearing of our God: Be careful to follow all the commands of the LORD your God, that you may possess this good land and pass it on as an inheritance to your descendants forever.


To understand some of the Bible’s most amazing and inspiring prophecies, we must embark on a study that begins 4,000 years ago—when God began working with a man called Abraham. Abraham was a remarkable figure. God made astounding promises to him that continue to affect not only his descendants but the whole world.


The books of the Old Testament describe Abraham’s offspring growing into a mighty nation—the Israelite kingdom—and entering into a special covenant relationship with God. Comprised of 12 tribes, or family groups, the nation gained prominence for a time.


Yet before long the Israelites divided into two competing kingdoms. When the larger of the two, which retained the name Israel (comprised of 10 of the 12 tribes), rejected its partnership with God, it set in motion one of history’s greatest mysteries when its people were forcibly exiled from their ancient homeland.

The smaller, southern kingdom of Judah—comprised of the two remaining tribes and remnants of another—failed to learn the lesson of its northern kinsmen. Its citizens likewise rejected God and were taken into captivity. For the most part, however, they retained their identity and have remained visible through history as a small and often persecuted race, the Jewish people.


Matthew begins by calling Jesus the son of David, indicating his royal origin, and also son of Abraham, indicating that he was an Israelite; both are stock phrases, in which son means descendant, calling to mind the promises God made to David and to Abraham.


Since Jesus is the son of David the promises given to Abraham and passed to David are then passed on to the descendants of Jesus. The sacred text says in Romans 8:14-17 ~


14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. 15 The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.” 16 The Spirit himself testifies with our spirit that we are God’s children. 17 Now if we are children, then we are heirs—heirs of God and co-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in his sufferings in order that we may also share in his glory.


As Christian Believers, as descendants of Jesus who are recognized as co-heirs with Christ, we have a sacred responsibility to live as children of God. We have eternal promises that position us to live empowered lives as God’s chosen people because of the work of the cross. This love God has for us and as those who love our God we have the duty, no the directive, to keep the commandments of our Lord and Savior Jesus. The sacred text says:


John 14:12-17 ~ 12 Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. 13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. 15 “If you love me, keep my commands. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.


Some of Jesus’ Commandments are:

  • 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments,"
  • "Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful,"
  • "Have faith in God,"
  • “Let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven,"
  • “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven.”
  • "You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him,"
  • "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you,"


2) Seek God


1 Chronicles 28:9 ~ “And you, my son Solomon, acknowledge the God of your father, and serve him with wholehearted devotion and with a willing mind, for the LORD searches every heart and understands every desire and every thought. If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will reject you forever.


John 7:7-8 ~ 7 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.


When was the last time you sought after God? No, I am not talking about saying grace at the dinner table. I’m talking about turning over your plate, fasting, and putting your entire focus of chasing after God. Your entire focus on seeking God. When was the last time your personal Bible study turned into Spirit filled worship? God is a God that closes doors to protect us from harm (and ourselves) and opens doors us to experience the prosperity of His love.  


3) Be Strong and do the Work


1 Chronicles 28:10 ~ Consider now, for the LORD has chosen you to build a house as the sanctuary. Be strong and do the work.”


Solomon Builds the Temple in 2 Chronicles 3

So Solomon broke ground, launched construction of the house of God in Jerusalem on Mount Moriah, the place where God had appeared to his father David. The precise site had been designated by David. These are the dimensions that Solomon set for the construction of the house of God: ninety feet long and thirty feet wide. The porch (the balcony) in front stretched the width of the building, that is, thirty feet; and it was thirty feet high.

The interior was gold-plated. He paneled the main hall with cypress and veneered it with fine gold engraved with palm tree and chain designs. He decorated the building with precious stones and gold. Everything was coated with gold veneer: rafters, door frames, walls, and doors. Cherubim were engraved on the walls.


Solomon made the Holy of Holies a cube, thirty feet wide, long, and high. It was veneered with over twenty-two tons of gold. The gold nails weighed a little over a pound. The upper rooms were also veneered in gold.


He made two sculptures of cherubim, gigantic angel-like figures, for the Holy of Holies, both covered with gold. The combined wingspread of the side-by-side cherubim (each wing measuring seven and a half feet) stretched from wall to wall, thirty feet. They stood erect facing the main hall.


He fashioned the curtain of violet, purple, and crimson fabric and worked a cherub design into it.


He made two huge free-standing pillars, each fifty-two feet tall, their capitals extending another seven and a half feet. He placed the pillars in front of The Temple, one on the right, and the other on the left. The right pillar he named Jakin (Security) and the left pillar he named Boaz (Stability).


The ELC builds a temple unto the Lord our God every Sunday. We gather at 8 a.m. lay down the foundation of blue tarp, build walls of black pipe and drape, place speakers and lights in their designated places, set up projectors and screens, roll in heavy speakers and audio equipment, and the finest computers, sound board, and microphones you can buy. On Sunday, The ELC builds a sanctuary, where others usually play games. We do the work.


CLOSING THOUGHT / CHALLENGE

We are the Sanctuary. We are the Temple of God. We are the Church


1 Corinthians 3:9-11; 16-17 ~ 9 For we are co-workers in God’s service; you are God’s field, God’s building. 10 By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as a wise builder, and someone else is building on it. But each one should build with care. 11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ.


16 Don’t you know that you yourselves are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in your midst? 17 If anyone destroys God’s temple, God will destroy that person; for God’s temple is sacred, and you together are that temple.


You may ask, what is the work? 


  • Forgive people that have hurt you so our heavenly Father will forgive you
  • Fast & pray. Jesus said, some demonic forces (hardships, challenges, and major problems) require fasting and praying to be removed and defeated
  • Find a church that teaches how to live an empowered life and serve God in it
  • Love your neighbor, your family, your friends, and your enemies
  • Give, share, and give some more without expecting anything in return
  • Build this house, this gymnasium, into a glorious sanctuary unto the Lord.


Will you do the work and build this sanctuary called the Empowered Living Church with us?


10 Consider now, for the LORD has chosen you to build a house as the sanctuary. Be strong and do the work.”