- Sermon Notes
Seven Life-Changing Words
1. Words are powerful.
2. Words can make you laugh, or make you cry.
3. Words can motivate, or they can discourage.
4. Corporations spend millions of dollars each year looking for that memorable slogan, that catchy phrase, to brand their companies and sell their products.
ILLUS – Seven Famous Slogans
5. During tonight’s study, we are going to focus on seven words from the Bible which are better than any corporate slogan.
6. These seven words:
a. Reveal God’s eternal roadmap for our lives, and
b. Reveal God’s desire for each of us to experience the fullness of Christ every moment of every day.
7. The truth of these seven words is so profound, that I believe our lives can be radically changed when we begin to explore and comprehend the depths of their meaning. They are truly “Seven Life-Changing Words.”
Transition – It is my prayer, that as we study these seven life-changing words, our hearts will be stirred to want more of Jesus because, as we will see, Jesus is all we need.
1. When the Apostle Paul wrote this letter to the church in Colossae he was in prison because of his faith in Christ and his proclamation of the Gospel to the Gentiles.
2. Paul never met the Christians in Colossae, but he had heard that they were under attack for their faith.
3. So, Paul sought to encourage them to stay the course and finish the race set before them; to stand strong in their faith, empowered by the Holy Spirit, doing all for the glory of God.
Transition – Without wasting time, Paul got to the heart of the matter in verse 27.
• Seven powerful words, “Christ in you, the hope of glory.”
• What is the significance of these seven words?
I. Christ is in You (27a)
• In Paul’s greeting to the church, he called them “the saints and faithful brethren in Christ.” (2)
• This is an important point. Christians are in Christ and Christ is in Christians.
• What does this mean?
• First, we must understand God’s heart and will behind these words, “Christ in you.”
A. Christ wants you, each of you
1. In Christ, God’s mystery was unveiled, “the mystery which had been hidden from the past ages and generations, but has now been manifested to His saints.” (26)
2. What mystery has God revealed through Jesus Christ?
a. Jews are reconciled to God through Jesus.
b. Gentiles are also reconciled to God through Jesus.
c. Jews and Gentiles are one body, on equal footing, before God through Jesus Christ.
ILLUS – Sharing with the pastors in Mwanza, Tanzania that Christ has broken “down the dividing wall.”
Galatians 3:28, There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave or free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
APPL – Oh how our lives will radically change when we realize how much God loves us and wants to heal our brokenness. It will give us strength for our todays and a great hope for our tomorrows.
B. Christ wants you, all of you
1. Through His death on the cross, Jesus paid the price to rescue us out of slavery to sin and the fate of eternal judgment so that we might become daughters and sons in God’s family.
Colossians 1:13-14, For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.
2. How does Jesus’ death do all of this for us?
3. The moment we place our faith in Jesus and confess Him as our Savior:
a. Our sin is forgiven,
b. We are adopted into God’s family,
c. And through the Holy Spirit, Christ dwells in us and is changing us to make us look more like Jesus.
1 Corinthians 6:19-20, Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own? For you have been bought with a price; therefore glorify God in your body.
4. What does it mean that Christians are a temple of the Holy Spirit?
a. The temple was comprised of three sections:
• The outer courtyard,
• The holy place,
• The holy of holies, where the ark of the covenant was placed, and God’s glorious presence resided over the mercy seat, between the cherubim.
b. Once a year, the high priest entered the holy of holies on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement.
c. Yom Kippur is the holiest day on Israel’s calendar, when the high priest entered the holy of holies, with fear and trembling, to sprinkle blood on the mercy seat to make atonement for the sins that Israel had committed during the previous year.
d. The Greek word for the holy of holies is naos.
e. When Paul said Christians are a temple of the Holy Spirit in 1 Cor. 6:19-20, he used the word naos, which means we are now the holy of holies.
f. So, Paul was exhorting Christians to live holy lives because the Holy Spirit dwells within us.
APPL – We, Christians are walking miracles.
• God dwells within us just like His glory dwelt in the holy of holies.
• God dwells within us because He alone can change our hearts, renew our minds, and victoriously guide us in His ways. We need Jesus.
• The problem is that many Christians have an “Open Door/Closed Door” relationship with God.
Revelation 3:20, Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door; I will come in to him, and will dine with him and he with Me.
APPL – It really comes down to choices. Christ gave His all for us and is worthy of nothing less than our all, in return. The Apostle Paul understood this when he wrote. . .
Galatians 2:20, I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me, and delivered Himself up for me.
Transition – Why is having Christ in me so important? I am convinced that if we truly knew. . .
• Who He is,
• What He has done,
• What He is doing, and
• What He will do,
• We would agree that. . .
C. Christ is all you need
1. A few years ago, I was studying this passage and started to reflect on “Who” Jesus is and “How” He has been revealed in the Bible.
2. I began to write down from memory every title, name, and description that referred to Jesus.
3. After I looked at what I had written, I began to worship and give thanks to our Lord.
ILLUS – Jesus is. . .
Psalm 23:1, The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
APPL – Give me Jesus. He is all I need.
II. Our Hope is Secure in Christ (27b)
According to Strong’s Lexicon, the word “hope” means the “joyful confident expectation of eternal salvation.”
Psalm 25:3, No one who hopes in You will ever be put to shame (NIV)
A. Make certain your future
1. There are only two options.
2. Either, you are in Christ.
3. Or, you are not in Christ.
C. S. Lewis wrote in The Great Divorce, “There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, ‘Thy will be done,’ and those to whom God says, in the end, ‘Thy will be done.’”
Hebrews 9:27, And inasmuch as it is appointed for men to die once and after this comes judgment
APPL – Again, are you certain about your future?
• Our heavenly Father wants to remove all uncertainty.
• He gave His Son Jesus and confirmed that He alone is the One who can save our souls.
• When we receive Jesus as our Savior, our hope is secured, anchored in Him.
Hebrews 6:19, This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast
• Our heavenly Father does not want us to be left in the dark, wandering through life, fearful of what happens when we die.
• He wants us to be joyful, confident, expectant of a blessed eternity in His presence.
ILLUS – Morning is coming
APPL – Morning is coming. Death has been swallowed up in victory. That is our hope, a hope that is secure in Jesus.
1 Peter 1:3-4, Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to obtain an inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you
B. Do all for the glory of God
1. The Hebrew word for glory is kabod. It conveys the idea of weight, authority, dignity, or splendor.
2. For the Jews, God’s glory gave meaning and weight to life because it meant His presence was with His people; God dwelling with them.
3. For Christians, the significance is far greater since it means that Christ is in us.
APPL – We need to be reminded of that now more than any time in recent history.
• Life is tough. It can chew you up and spit you out.
• But when you feel discouraged and broken, do not give up. Give God room to move. God is on the move.
• We must remember these seven life-changing words, “Christ in you, the hope of glory.” It will give us a divine perspective.
ILLUS – My daughter’s hope while waiting for the COVID-19 test results
2 Corinthians 4:16-17, Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison.
J. Oswald Sanders wrote, “Everyone of us is as close to God as he wants to be.”
APPL – How close do you want to be to God?
• How much do you want Him to change your life?
• Will you join me and ask the Lord to change your life, to give you Jesus because He is all we need?
Colossians 1:24-29 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
24 Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I [a]do my share on behalf of His body, which is the church, in filling up what is lacking [b]in Christ’s afflictions. 25 Of this church I [c]was made a minister according to the stewardship from God bestowed on me for your benefit, so that I might [d]fully carry out the preaching of the word of God, 26 that is, the mystery which has been hidden from the past ages and generations, but has now been manifested to His [e]saints, 27 to whom God willed to make known what is the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory. 28 We proclaim Him, admonishing every man and teaching every man [f]with all wisdom, so that we may present every man [g]complete in Christ. 29 For this purpose also I labor, striving according to His [h]power, which [i]mightily works within me.