Passage: John 5:1–5:5
I. Real change begins when Downtown church sees herself as the family of God.
“Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the Father loves whoever has been born of him (1).”
Orphans vs. Sons slide
II. I. Change happens when, out of love for and obedience to our Father, we begin to really love our brothers and sisters in Christ.
“By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments (2).”
Show the slide of the picture of two children
“Ideally the church itself is not made up of natural ‘friends.’ It is made up of natural enemies. What binds us together is not common education, common race, common income levels, common politics, common nationality, common accents, common jobs, or anything of the sort. Christians come together, not because they form a natural collocation, but because they have been saved by Jesus Christ and owe him a common allegiance. In the light of this common allegiance, in light of the fact that they have all been loved by Jesus himself, they commit themselves to doing what he says—and he commands them to love one another. In this light, they are a band of natural enemies who love one another for Jesus’ sake.” DA Carson
III. Change will happen when we love and fight for what the Father loves.
“By this we know that we love the children of God, when we love God and obey his commandments. For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments (2-3a).”
"And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption (Eph. 4:30).”
“The same Spirit who convicts my heart of sin, generates in me love for God, gives me new birth, provides my apprehension of the beauty of grace in the world, and seals my redemption until the coming of my Lord—this same Spirit who loves me so intimately and perfectly, I can cause to grieve.” Bryan Chappell
1. We are not fighting against, but for others.
2. We are fighting from humility.
3. We fight as one whose sin is equal, not greater nor less than the sin being addressed.
“There are six things that the Lord hates, seven that are an abomination to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that make haste to run to evil, a false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers (Prov. 6:16-19).”
“And his commandments are not burdensome. For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world—our faith. Who is it that overcomes the world except the one who believes that Jesus is the Son of God (3b-5)?”