More Than Rules - Not a Fan Series - Week 5

  • by: Pastor Shawn Ketcheson
  • Feb 26, 2012

Sermon Five: More Than Rules
Not A Fan Series

"I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ." Gandhi

"If a man commits adultery with another man's wife – with the wife of his neighbor – both the adulterer and the adulteress must be put to death." Leviticus 20:10

John 8:6-9

katagrapho: "making a list,"

"If any of you is without sin, let him begin stoning her."

"When he opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour."
Revelation 8:1

"You are weighed in the balance and found wanting." Daniel 5

Jesus is the only one qualified to deliver judgment.

1) Rules Can Be Cumbersome

God's Word provides both guidance and commandments. And those commandments, those laws, they are here to protect us.

The problem is that they had somehow gotten the idea that following those rules made them a Christian.

2) The Rules Don't Inspire Grace

And the grace of Jesus, that same grace that saved a woman from being stoned, calls to those who have been hauling around a long list of rules and rituals and obligations – Jesus calls to those who tired of pretending to be more than they are. He calls to those who have had the guilt and fear of religions wear them down and he says "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest."

When you come into a situation in which rules take precedence over love and grace, it's hard to fall in love.

Rules I understood prior to marrying Sue:

1. Be faithful to her. As long as we both live I am going to be hers alone.
2. To provide for her. I'm going to meet her needs.
3. To be committed to her. For better or for worse.

There are other rules I didn't know about that have since been established...

1. I am to keep my clothes picked up off the floor.
2. I am not to make fun of her or the breed of her puppy.
3. I am to say out loud what I am thinking.

"Who can be good, if not made so by loving? . . . Love God and do as you please." Augustine

Guilt and fear are poor motivators, but love motivates us inwardly, from the heart, to do our best.

"The letter [of the law] kills, but the Spirit gives life." 2 Corinthians 3:6

"Christ's love compels us." 2 Corinthians 5:14

People whose lives have been touched by grace understand that the Christian life is not a matter of following a moral code, nor is it a matter of believing a prescribed set of doctrines; the Christian life is a relationship with God. That relationship is marked by love and trust. We discover that we are respected and accepted by God and our hearts respond with love and dedication.

3) The Rules Don't Keep Us Around

When our kids grow up and they define Christianity as keeping a moral code instead of defining Christianity as being a follower of Jesus Christ, then they will walk away from both.

We cannot expect to recruit the world to a set of standards that we would never live by or follow if it wasn't for a love relationship with Jesus Christ.

"But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit". Titus 3:4-5

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