ROMANS 12:3-8 “A NORMAL CHURCH IS A FUNCTIONING CHURCH … EVERY DAY”

INTRODUCTION:

Romans 12 begins with Paul exhorting us to a higher way of living.
After all Christ has done for us we have an obligation.
An obligation to live well.
This starts with a total commitment to serving Christ with all we have and are … living sacrifices.
Christianity is not a holiday resort … it is signing up to God’s army.
The quicker we learn this the better.
God knows we are part of His army.
The devil knows we are a part of God’s army … and continually attacks us.
It is often only the Christians who DON’T … and suffer accordingly!!!!

Romans 12 then continues with a commitment to transformation from within.
This transformation, Paul likens to the metamorphasis of a caterpillar … from one state to another.
But it doesn’t happen by accident.
It is the result of an intentional change in our thinking … to choose not to be moulded by the world around us and to change our thinking to match God’s in every area of life.

This life change has a powerful purpose … a world changing purpose!
It is to this purpose, that Paul now turns in Romans 12:3-8

Romans 12:3-8
“A NORMAL CHURCH IS A FUNCTIONING CHURCH … EVERY DAY!”
To function well we need to get a few things sorted.

1. A RIGHT APPRECIATION OF OURSELVES Vs. 3

a. Before God:

Too many Christians see themselves AS LESS THAN WHAT GOD SEES!
We short change ourselves spiritually.

We are:
In the right
Forgiven
Cleansed
Set free
A child of God … an heir of the Father
The Holy Spirit living within us. The power of God resident within us.
Kings & priests …
We are so much better than what we think.
We have a high calling … Greater authority … more power available to us.
It is time we saw ourselves AS GOD SEES US!

b. Before others:
Vs. 3 “Do not think of yourselves more highly than what you ought”

The other danger is to compare ourselves with others (either favourably or unfavourably)

Philippians 2:1-9 Christ’s example to us.
We are NO BETTER than anyone else (but no worse either).
We are ALL EQUAL before God.
There are NO super saints
There are no better human beings. No “God-favourites”

2. A CLEAR UNDERSTANDING OF OUR FUNCTION
Vs. 4-8

“all members of one body”
1 Corinthians 12:12-31

The church is the “body of Christ”
Each individual is a member, or organ, of that body.
We all have different gifts & different roles to fulfill.

Discuss different body functions … body cannot be complete without each functioning correctly & all the time!

We are born with natural abilities & temperaments.
Our role is to:
a. Recognise those
b. Allow the Holy Spirit to energize them
c. USE them. “if it is service, leadership, prophetic giftings etc … then USE IT DAILY!”

The greatest tragedy is gifted people not functioning:
• People with a gift of hospitality not being hospitable
• People with a gift of leadership or admin not leading or organising
• People with a gift of teaching not helping others to learn stuff
• People with a prophetic leaning not hearing from God and learning how to share with others.

It is time to develop & use what we have:
• In the church
• In the world around us

The body of Christ is designed TO MOVE.
Not stay inside a church building … but move into the world doing what we do best and shining God’s love as we do.

The church becomes powerful as each of us use our gifts in the church AND in the community.
What we have is designed to be used 7 days a week.

We can’t play at Christian service when we feel like it.
Christianity is not a hobby … IT IS A DIVINE CALLING!

CONCLUSION:

The church is not on this earth to be a pretty ornament or an ancient relic.
We exist to change the world … to shine with God’s light.
To make a difference wherever we are.
That means we must ask ourselves some very important questions:

1. What are we good at?
2. What do we sense a calling or attraction towards?
3. Is there something (or some kinds of people) we have a distinct feeling or concern for?
4. Are we submitting those things to the Holy Spirit?
5. Are we doing something about it? Are we using what we have for God?

Altar call:
Write down what it is you have identified as a gift, calling, ability, situation or people you feel called to reach.

• Bring to the foot of the cross and place them there.
• Offer who you are and what you have for His service in 2019.
• Ask God for help to begin to DO SOMETHING ABOUT IT.
• Make a plan to act on that commitment.