(Speaking of Jesus)…Heb 8:6 “But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.”
If you walk with the Healer, He will heal you. If you walk with the Lord, He will bless you. God cares about the big things and the little things. He loves you!
Building your life on God’s promises
It’s right to praise God no matter what. It refreshes your mind as to what is actually true. Your situation is only temporary. Praise puts your mind on things eternal. When you pray, quoting Scripture, you are claiming the promises of God. The promises of God have to be tried and proven. You have to walk into them.
Understand God’s Will
(Taking a look at the title of the message): Covenant- N.T., 2 ideas, one is disposition, 2nd is a contract.
One idea is: The term ‘disposition’ has two distinct legal meanings
• When used in the context of litigation it refers to a court’s final determination of a case or issue;
• When used in relation to property it refers to the act of transferring or relinquishing of that property to another’s care or possession usually by deed or will.
• Court case, final decision/determination. (Not guilty!) Forever settled. No chance for appeal. (As far as the East is from the West, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us. (Psalm 103:12 is a covenant promise of forgiveness.) There is no condemnation. If you build your life on that, you can’t condemn yourself. How can you get depressed when God has made it so that you can’t be condemned?
• Not mine anymore, but yours. Not just sharing, there is a transferring. According to the Biblical idea of the marriage covenant, the husband belongs to the wife and the wife belongs to the husband. They do not belong to themselves any longer. Same idea as Jesus and His Church, we belong to God. He belongs to us. It is a change of ownership. The Biblical concept of being one Body, many parts, (I Cor 12) as well as lively stones that fit together to build a living Temple of God, fitly framed, (1 Pet. 2:5) has the same fundamental idea, we are not our own.
Just as a hand can’t wash itself because it needs the other hand, so the body needs its parts to work properly. We don’t belong to ourselves. We are part of a body meant to serve one another.
The Old Testament adds an idea: there is a physical sign of this compact, coalition, confederacy, or covenant. Something is “cut away.” Circumcision was a perfect sign, cutting away of the flesh, and something hidden, private, personal, marked forever on the body as a sign that one was under a covenant. You are forever changed, marked as belonging to Jesus. The physical sign in the New Testament is baptism in Jesus’ Name. You can’t baptize yourself. You need the body to do this.
Step away from this intellectual/abstract definition. This is merely a foundation. A foundation has to be built upon.
• Sand Foundation. Matt 7:26-27 (Some of you need to build your lives on something more sure). “And every one that heareth these sayings of Mine and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, who built his house upon the sand;27 and the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell, and great was the fall of it.”
• Concrete Block foundation. Matt. 7:24–25 “Therefore, whosoever heareth these sayings of Mine and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, who built his house upon a rock.25 And the rain descended and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat upon that house; and it fell not, for it was founded upon a rock.”
• Small cedar block foundation. Firm, but not very big. Some of you are living off of only one sure promise. (Repentance, lived for years on this alone.) Need to expand your tool box of promises! (Like Baptism, remission of sins, personal testimony. I’ve been baptized in the titles, but there is a promise in baptism in Jesus name! Also, as a covenant needs a sign, like circumcision in the O.T., baptism in Jesus’ name is the sign of the New Covenant.)
Acts 2:38 “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.”
Col 2:9-11 “For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. 10 And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power: 11 In whom also ye are circumcised with the circumcision made without hands, in putting off the body of the sins of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ:”
When did this happen? When you were…
Col 2:12-15 “Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead. 13 And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses; 14 Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross; 15 And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it.”
All of that happened in baptism! Took the promise and I built on it! Free from sickness, (Cancer goes into remission), free to pursue life liberty, and the pursuit of happiness! Freed from being bound to pursue sin, did you know baptism had a promise?
The Will of God: living in the promise. You can build on these promises.
• In Number: find more promises!
• In Depth: take a promise into a new area, or trust it with more of your life.
The way I apply the promises of God to my life maybe different from the way you do. For instance, the house I build might not look like the house you build. The fence I have to keep certain things out might not be exactly like the fence you build. Houses and fences are meant to be inhabited by certain things and to keep other things out.
“Be fruitful and multiply.” (Gen 35:11) People have different families, different blessings, different ways of using their time and talents God has given them to flourish and continue to fulfill this promise.
Php 4:19 “But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus” has worked out differently in each of our cases because each of our needs are different.
Do you get the picture?
The Will of God is found in the pages of the Word of God and worked out in our lives by trusting the promises of God. The process is: find a promise, and live it.
The will of God is living in the promises of God.
2Ti 2:15 “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”
There are promises that God has given the Church, both corporate and individually, generally and personally. My challenge to you is to dig deeper, trust more, read more and open your eyes to what God wants to give to you.
Excerpted from a sermon preached by Charles Li
For the full YouTube audio/video, click here.
If you are in the Chicagoland area, come to The Life Church located at 3030 Central Road in Glenview, IL. Services are Sundays at 1pm and Wednesdays at 7pm. We would love to see you there!