Trouble in the church isn’t new.
MAY 24, 2021
Trouble in the church isn’t new. Let’s talk about it on Key Life.
Being adopted into the family of God is not about doing more or trying harder. It’s about being welcomed by God, because of his radical grace, free from the penalties of sin and never alone in your suffering, that grace is what Key Life is all about.
Thank you Matthew. Hope you guys had a great week-end and I hope your pastor’s sermon was as good as my pastor’s sermon. We, if you’re just joining us, you’re joining us toward the end of the trip. Over the past weeks and months, we’ve been studying one of my favorite books in the Bible. And that’s the book of Galatians, because of it’s incredible teaching on grace and freedom. And we’ve spent a long time there and we’re up to the final chapter of Galatians. And this week, and next week, we’re going to be landing the plane. And then we’re going to study the book of Acts, the acts of God, the acts of the Holy Spirit. The acts of God’s people in a very troubled time. And there’s so much in that book that I can hardly wait to share with you, but we’re still in Galatians. And we’re looking at Galatians, the fifth chapter, the last verse of that chapter, 25. And then we’re going through the 10th verse of the sixth chapter, the final chapter of Galatians. So, if you’ve got a Bible and you’re in a place where you can, sit down, let’s pray and we’ll get to that text. Father, we come into your presence so amazed that we’re here. You know, we listen to the lies that said you had to earn this, that you had to work at it, that you had to be good. And then, because you are a Holy God, you would notice, and help us out. And Father, you know we tried and couldn’t do it. And then we turned away and heard your voice. Welcome child. Welcome. Finally, you’re beginning to understand that you can’t do it and I can. And Father, we praise you for that, for forgiveness and grace and mercy. And the sufficient and finished sacrifice of Christ on the Cross. And so, we study the Bible, as forgiven people, and we’re thankful for that. Father, you know, everybody who’s listening to this broadcast and you know all of the circumstances of every life in every place. You are sovereign and you’re sovereign all the time, but you’re good and you’re good all the time. Father, give us the grace to discern the times and to hear your voice and see your actions in everything, the good and the bad. And then Father, as we study your Word, we pray for the one who teaches, forgive him his sins, because they are many, we would see Jesus and him only. And we pray in Jesus name. Amen. Alright, I’m going to start, and this is the last time I’ll be reading this text at the 25th verse of the fifth chapter and into the first 10 verses of the sixth chapter.
If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. Let us have no self conceit, no provoking of one another, no envy of one another. Brothers, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Look to yourself, lest you too be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ. For if anyone thinks that he is something, when he’s nothing, he deceives himself. But let each one test his own work, and then his reason to boast will be in himself alone and not in his neighbor. For each man will have to bear his own load. Let him who is taught the word share all good things with him who teaches. Don’t be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever a man sows, that will he will reap. For he who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. And let us not grow weary in well-doing, for in due season we shall reap, if we do not lose heart. And then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all men, and especially those who are of the household of faith.
Now, if you’ve been with us in our study during this time, you know that the church at Galatia had some problems. There were divisions in the church. There were people who stirred up those divisions for their own power and their own PR, who challenged the apostle Paul and his teaching, especially on the gospel and Paul in some places in Galatians is really an angry man. And in another places gentle and he has a broken heart, but he’s dealing with the church and the church divisions and the problems that are going on in the church, I was a pastor in a church for a hundred years. Well, maybe not a hundred, but it felt like that, for 20, 30, maybe more years. And, man I’ll tell you, I wake up in the morning and if it’s pouring down rain and I’m depressed and got a bad day ahead, I stopped for a moment and think, you know, this could be worse, I could still be a pastor. And when I study something like the book of Galatians, I begin to see, good heavens, there’s a lot of bad stuff going on and it wasn’t just in the church I was serving. It’s been going on forever. And so, the apostle Paul throughout this whole book, in a sense, deals with the problems in the church. You always hear people saying, wish we could go back to the first century. When we study Acts, we’re going to find out, be glad where you are, cause it was even worse then, church divisions and problems and selfishness and greed and power building, all of those things have been a part of the church. Why’s that? It’s because the church is made up of sinners. I recently heard about a man who was in a ministry who was removed because of a particular sin. And somebody said, well, we’ll look for a good man to replace him. Well, lots of luck with that. There aren’t good people around, and the good people are not the ones in the church. The ones in the church are not good and have professed that when they joined the church. And so you got problems, of course, you’ve got problems. Divisions, of course you’ve got divisions, but the church is the bride of Christ and it’s the only institution you know, that will never die. If you’re active in Rotary Club, be glad, that’s a good place to be, but it’s going to die. If you’re active in an educational institution and you teach there, that’s wonderful, but it’s going to die. The church isn’t, because the church belongs to him because the church is the bride of Christ. And one day, one day there will be no spot or wrinkle, as the apostle Paul said. Not one bit of problem, we’ll join hands, sing Kumbaya around the throne and none of the problems that are a part of the church, will be there anymore. But they’re there now. And the apostle Paul knew that, now we spent some time looking at discipline and how that goes on in the church. But what I’m doing now, and I started last week is looking at some principles that are there for all time, that we need to be aware of, and that Paul teaches in this last moving to the end of his book of Galatians. If you were listening last week and you never listen to me, we noted the principle of reliance, Galatians 6:1-2.
Brothers, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual should restore him in a spirit of gentleness. Look to yourself, lest you too be tempted. Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.
What does that say? That says that when you joined the church, you didn’t do a John Wayne thing, it’s me and God going to fix the world. When you joined the church, you gathered up with a bunch of people, and when God speaks to one, he speaks to a bunch. When he calls one, he calls a bunch and he says, now you’re dependent on each other. Remember that and be careful. And you can see that work out when Paul says, if somebody really messes it up, you who are spiritual and nobody’s spiritual all the time, he’s talking about those who are right now in a better place. You restore that person with gentleness, and be careful that you don’t fall yourself. We need each other. You may not like me, but you need me. And I might not like you, but I need you too, that’s what church is all about. And that principle is one that you got to remember in your church, no matter who bothers you, it’s your brother and your sister in Christ, and they need you and you need them. You think about that. Amen.
Thanks Steve. That was Steve Brown, rounding the corner into the final chapter of Galatians. Today we discovered that church divisions and every other kind of church problem are nothing new, but we have hope. And in case you didn’t catch it earlier, our text was Galatians 5:25 through Galatians 6:10. Hey, by the way, are you working at getting better? How’s that going? Listen, if we could be honest for a moment, struggling to get better on our own is tough. If you’ve tried it and found that to be true, then you might be interested in the sermon Steve did teaching from Ephesians 2, about how our sanctification really happens. If trying to muscle your way toward getting better has left you spent. I think you’re going to get a lot out of the sermon. We put the whole thing on a CD, that we would love to send to you today for free. Just call 1-800-KEY-LIFE. That’s 1-800-539-5433. You can also e-mail Steve@keylife.org and ask for the CD. If you’d like to mail your request, send it to
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