Hot Topics, Part 6
This message is the last part of our Hot Topics series. In it we consider using four filters to help us in making Biblical and wise decisions when it comes to a number of life and lifestyle decisions.
Hot Topics Series
What About . . .
Dave Spooner – Mosaic Rockford – Sept. 27th, 2015
- New sermon series: Transformation – how God changes us . . . (through thanksgiving and then we will do 4 week Christmas series, then new years and then into another series in the new year)
- This sermon is the last one in our “hot topic” series and I titled it “What About . . . ” and it is a catch all for things people wonder about.
- To find the answers to some of these questions and for decisions we are considering, I’m going to give us 4 filters to making wise and biblical decisions.
The Filter of Context
- Biblical Context
- There are issues that are out of bounds
- Basic Bible Interpretation – no proof texting out of context
- Interpreting the Old Testament through the new
- There are three basic categories of law; the ceremonial laws (which included worship and the sacrificial system), ritual purity laws (which included what you ate, what you wore, how you worked, etc.) and moral laws (your relationship with God and other people).
- This is where Jesus and the New Testament comes in. Jesus in his teaching talked about what the Old Testament law was all about – it was always and will always be about the heart. This is what He was getting at on the Sermon on the Mount and all of his teachings and actions. His message was “repent for the kingdom of God is at hand” – it was not “death to the lawbreakers”. Why, because Jesus perfectly lived by and fulfilled all the requirements of the law – he did not break a single one. In his death and resurrection we have a new covenant in His blood. In this covenant we have forgiveness through repentance (Jesus and the women caught in adultery) He did for us what we could not do, so this is why faith in Jesus is the only thing that matters. If you want to get to heaven by your works, you have to do all of them (which no one can). So in Jesus we have a new way of approaching God the father – it is through him.
- Jesus did away with the ceremonial and ritual purity laws. All foods have been declared clean (Mark 7:19; Acts 10:8-11:18); holy days have been rendered optional (Rom 14:5-6); the entire sacrificial system of temple, priest, and sacrifice has been superseded (Heb. 7:1-10:18). The moral laws were brought forward into the New Testament and those who broke them were told to repent, make amends to those who they have wronged (including God), put to death our sinful nature and walk in accordance with the Holy Spirit trusting Christ for our salvation.
- Cultural Context
- Men not covering their head, women covering their head, hair length for men and women
- 1 Cor 11:16 (NIV)
If anyone wants to be contentious about this, we have no other practice — nor do the churches of God.
- Dealt with proper relationships with God and each other . . .
- Different places on the planet
- Organizational Context
- Did you make a covenant/contract with a group to be a part of the group?
- Relational context
- With authorities – parents – you are in their house
- Will your actions cause others to stumble?
1 Cor 8:9-13 (NLV)
But you must be careful so that your freedom does not cause others with a weaker conscience to stumble. 10 For if others see you—with your “superior knowledge”—eating in the temple of an idol, won’t they be encouraged to violate their conscience by eating food that has been offered to an idol? 11 So because of your superior knowledge, a weak believer for whom Christ died will be destroyed. 12 And when you sin against other believers by encouraging them to do something they believe is wrong, you are sinning against Christ. 13 So if what I eat causes another believer to sin, I will never eat meat again as long as I live—for I don’t want to cause another believer to stumble.
Rom 14:19-20 (NIV)
Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification.
The Filter of Conscience
- If you believe something is wrong/sin then it is wrong/sin for you . . .
- Reference I Cor. 12 . . . if you encourage some to do something they believe is wrong . . . you are sinning because they are sinning . . . .
Rom 14:14 (NIV)
As one who is in the Lord Jesus, I am fully convinced that no food is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for him it is unclean.
Rom 14:23 (NIV)
But the man who has doubts is condemned if he eats, because his eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin.
The Filter of Course
- Where is this leading?
1 Cor 10:23-24 (NIV)
“Everything is permissible”-but not everything is beneficial. “Everything is permissible”-but not everything is constructive. 24 Nobody should seek his own good, but the good of others.
- Is this bringing me closer to God or away from him? Is this helping me to love God and love people more?
The Filter of Control
- Who or what is in control?
1 Cor 6:12(NIV)
“Everything is permissible for me”-but not everything is beneficial. “Everything is permissible for me”-but I will not be mastered by anything
2 Peter 2:19-20(NIV)
for a man is a slave to whatever has mastered him.
- Tattoos, drinking, gambling, smoking, drugs, head covering, long hair
- Use the 4 filters in making lifestyle decisions
- Filter of: context, conscience, course, and control
- Prayer and prayer people