What Comes from the Spirit (1 Corinthians 12:1-11)

July 2 2023

Series: 1 Corinthians

Topic: Holy Spirit

And a couple of you have said something about seeing a video that supposedly was me. But I’m here to tell you it wasn’t me. No, I’m joking. You can’t lie in Church. That would not be the place to lie. That was me. But things have changed quite a bit in 25 years. What can I say? Amen to what God is doing, what he did then, what he’s done in the last 25 years, and what he’s going to do in the next 25 years. And that’s what we look forward to. All right, we are going to continue our study in 1 Corinthians. We’re going to be studying 1 Corinthians 12. And by way of reminder, I want to tell you, last week we talked about Paul’s great love for the Corinth Church. I mean, it was just so obvious with all the things he put up with, questions that they had, and problems that they had, and things that they were doing wrong, and more things that they were doing wrong. And he just patiently kept on working with this great Church. And I think it’s a great example for all of us to follow, to be long-suffering.

That’s the old King James word, to be long-suffering with each other, I think is very important. One of the things I loved about Paul is he loved them so much that he would tell them the truth, even if it hurt. And sometimes that’s challenging because we like being liked and so we want to say the nice thing and all that. Well, Paul knew that they needed to hear some things. And what was happening is they were abusing the Lord’s Supper. There was division and problems and people being selfish. Some would get there early for the love feast and they eat up all the food and not have any for anybody else. And so it was just a bad scene. So he straightened them out on all of that. Now, here in Chapter 12, we turn our attention to spiritual gifts. And yes, you guessed it, they messed that up too. So Paul had to deal with them on this. These three chapters, 12, 13, and 14 deal with the gifts. The title of the lesson today is What Comes from the Spirit. What comes from the Spirit? Before we get into that, I want to just remind you of something very, very important.

Let me just say it bluntly, with all the things that we consider important in this world, I want to remind you that the most important institution on the planet is the Church. By far, it is the most important institution on the planet. Now, it’s hard for us to look at it that way because Satan has so divided churches. I mean, we can find 16 churches on a three-block stretch and none of them communicate none of them are close or whatever. Satan has made a mess of things and division always does that. And so the church is very divided. People think all sorts of things about the church. One thing is thought in general, people say, oh, the church is just a place governed by people. That’s all it is. It’s just people in charge of something. Or they’ll say the church is a place where you go out in the community and you pass out good things to people who are in need. Or you get involved with Second Harvest and you go collect food to help people in need. And that’s a good thing. That is not a bad thing. Some people considerthe the church to be a social club.

It’s a great place to go if you want to make some new friends, and the church is that as well. Or people say, Well, the church is a useful place because of birth and sadly death, but also weddings. Church is a good place for that. Or some people say that the church is really just a place where a group of people all believe the same thing and they get together to just talk about it. And all of those in some respect have a modicum of truth to it. It’s okay. But at the same time, the church is so much more. And I want to start with this because it’ll make the gift discussion come alive, in my opinion. So what makes it the greatest institution on the earth? Let’s go to Ephesians chapter 3, and we’re going to read this together. Ephesians 3, verse 6. Paul says This mystery is that through the gospel, the Gentiles are heirs together with Israel, members together of one body and shares together in the promise of Christ Jesus. Verse 9, And to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things.

His intent was that now through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known to the rulers, and authorities in the heavenly realms according to the eternal purpose that he accomplished in Christ Jesus, our Lord. He says that God did something in the church. In his wisdom, he brought together Jews and Gentiles, which was unheard of at the time. But in God, he brought them all together. There’s Jew and gentile, there’s a slave and there’s free, there’s rich and there’s poor, there’s people on the left and people on the right. God broke down the dividing wall of hostility for everyone. And that’s why the Church is so powerful. And this past week, we saw a bunch of decisions come down from the Supreme Court of the United States. And I don’t know where you land as far as how you feel about their decisions, whether you’re yeah or no. That’s not really the issue in my mind right now. But I wanted you to think about it. This is the Supreme Court, arguably the highest and greatest court in the land. And I thought, well, what does that word supreme mean? Well, it means superior to all others.

Superior to all others. It’s the strongest, most important, and most powerful. And despite how strong the Supreme Court is, the Church is stronger. The Church is more powerful, and the Church is more important in God’s eyes. And that’s why we got to talk about this. I want you to look at something Jesus said before he ascended in John 14. He’s talking to the disciples. Look at what he says will happen after he’s gone. He says, Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or at least believe on the evidence of the works themselves. Very truly, I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things in these because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. Now, I want you to think about what he’s saying. Remember that before the cross, before Jesus was erected, before his ascension, his work was unfinished. He still had more to do. And so he knew that when he departed, what was going to happen?

They were going to receive the Holy Spirit. They were going to receive the Holy Spirit. And we, anyone here who is a disciple of Jesus, you have received a portion of God in yourself. And that’s why I’m talking about this because we have got to realize that that’s who we are. And we need to embrace who we are in a greater way than ever. Our world desperately needs to see our devotion to our Lord. Because Jesus wants us to be his representatives on Earth. You and I and you may be thinking, Well, gosh, I don’t know. That’s way up there. That’s a lot for me to think about. But the great thing about God is he never commands you to do something that he doesn’t give you the ability to do. He will work it out. I remember before I was baptized, and some of you know my story, before I was baptized, one of the biggest concerns I had was, can I live this Christian life? Can I overcome my lust and my hatred and my jealousy and all of that? Can I do that? And I remember these brothers said, Philippians 4 13, I can do all things through Him who gives me the strength.

I said, okay, baptized me. Let’s do this. Let’s go. I want to do this. God never promises us any role that He will not equip us to do. I hope that encourages you. Jesus says the gates of hell will not prevail against the church. It’s time, guys. It’s time for us to embrace our calling. It’s time for us to decide enough with the facelessness, enough with all the things that are holding me back. Let me cast off these weights and let me move forward for God. We all need to do that. And I will say this sincerely, 25 years ago, I was a different guy, but one thing that I hope never changes is the faith and the commitment I had then and the faith and commitment that I have today and the faith and commitment I hope to have when I close my eyes and die. And so, God, that’s what I’m talking about. That’s where we’re going to get. Let’s go ahead and read our text for today. 1 Corinthians 12, verse 1, Now about the gifts of the Spirit, brothers, and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed. You know that when you were pagans, somehow or other, you were influenced and led astray to mute idols.

Therefore, I want you to know that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says Jesus is cursed. And no one can say Jesus is Lord, except by the Holy Spirit. There are different kinds of gifts but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone, it is the same God at work. Now to each one, the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. To one, there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom. To another, a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit. To another, faith by the same Spirit. To another, gifts of healing by that one Spirit. To another, miraculous powers. To another, prophecy. To another, distinguishing between spirits. To another, speaking in different kinds of tongues. And to still another, the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and He distributes them to each one just as He determines. Now, all of the commentators I look at, look at this in two sections. Chapter 12, 1 through 3 is about what comes from the Spirit because what comes from the Spirit is spiritual.

Chapter 12 verses 4 through 11, God expects unity, not rivalry. God expects unity, not rivalry. Let’s go to point number 1, what comes from the Spirit is spiritual. In verses 1 through 3, you can see that this is very important to the Apostle Paul Paul because he said, Now, about the gifts of the Spirit, I don’t want you to be ignorant. He said I want you to understand this. I want you to get it. I don’t want your thinking to be messed up. It was important enough that he wanted to share this with them. He talks about them being led away to mute idols, idols that can’t speak, idols that cannot communicate. And you know, it is funny. There’s another place where I think it was Peter, who said some of the things that Paul writes are hard to understand. This is one of them. All the commentaries, it’s amazing. Everybody has a different view of this, and some are diametrically opposed to each other. But there’s one that I thought was interesting, so I just share it with you. But keep in mind, it’s in the interesting category. It’s not necessarily of God, but it’s a thought to consider because there’s part of it that resonates with the times.

But that explanation where it talks about being led away to mute idol, the idea is that back then there was pagan worship, and it wasn’t uncommon for those worshiping these false deities to call on those deities to curse their rivals or their competition. And you remember the Old Testament, Balaam, and that whole situation, wanted to curse Israel. God wouldn’t allow it to happen. There’s that thinking that that’s what was going on. And some of those people become Christians and they come to the church and now they want Jesus to curse other people. Paul said, Look, if Jesus is Lord, you don’t think that way. There’s something wrong with your thinking. That’s not what you’re all about. I thought it was an interesting thing. I thought I just threw it out. You can take it out of your memory bank if you don’t like it and put something else in there. But I will tell you this, it’s not a salvation issue. If you don’t understand fully what it means, it’s okay. But the part that I think you do need to get is he said, no one can say Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit.

That’s the part that’s non-negotiable. You got to get that one. When he says, say those words, Jesus is Lord, he’s not talking about saying three words. He’s talking about something much, much deeper than that. He’s talking about trust and obedience, commitment, loyalty, a reverence. It’s a situation where you hand over to Jesus all your anxieties, all your struggles, your sins, your failures. You hand that all over to him. Your success is your destiny. You give it all to him. And your understanding, if we live, we live to the Lord. If we die, we die to the Lord. So whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. That’s what we’re talking about when he says Lordship. He said, No one can say Jesus is Lord unless the Holy Spirit enables them. And that’s the thing that we want to govern our lives. There was a lot in Quarrant that wanted to be considered spiritual, but Paul is trying to help him to see if his life and doctrine don’t match up, then you’re not spiritual. You don’t get it. You don’t understand. Now, like I did last week, and we try hard to keep it practical as we go through, I want you to ask yourself, what happens when we place ourselves holy and without reservation in the hands of Jesus Christ?

In what sense does this constrain us? And in what sense does it liberate us? Putting yourself holy, completely without reservation into the hand of Jesus Christ. I wanted to ask you that because on a personal level, when things are going rough for me and I prayed about something and it didn’t work out and I prayed again and it still didn’t work out and I feel stuck that, okay, we’re not moving forward here, God. One of us is falling down on the job. I’m praying that you’re not doing your part. So you’re the one messing up here. But there’s something cool about getting to the end of my rope when I know I’ve got nothing else, then I can say, Okay, God, it’s all yours. I’m sorry it took me so long to finally give it up, but I’m giving it up now. I think God will do that with us. But I think the challenge for us is to figure out how to put ourselves in the hands of God, holy and without reservation before we get to the end of our rope. We want that to be our heart, to just trust Him. As disciples, He calls us to be salt and light.

He wants us to make a difference in this world. He calls on us to be His ambassadors, 2 Corinthians 5. We are pilgrims in this world. Our citizenship is in heaven. This world is not our home. We’re just passing through. But while we are here, He wants us to draw the attention of the world to Himself. That is our mission. Jesus says, Go and make disciples of all nations. He took 11 guys and says, Here’s your job. Go to the entire world. In case you haven’t noticed, that’s a lot of folks. That’s a lot of people. I could just take the first three rows and say, Okay, this is your job from this point on. That’s what he did. He wants us to make a difference. But He gives us tools to help us along the way. Look at Ephesians 4, because he talks about equipping the church. Verse 11, says, So Christ himself gave the Apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the pastors and teachers to equip his people for works of service so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.

God’s goal is for us to attain the full measure of Jesus. He wants us to be exactly like his son. And so what Jesus did is that he said, okay if that’s going to happen, I need to leave a piece of myself behind with you. And that’s where the Holy Spirit comes in. So how can we represent Jesus first of all, we do that individually because the Bible teaches in Romans 8 that he gives us all his Holy Spirit. It says, If a man doesn’t have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Christ. So God gave a little bit of himself in you if you are his disciple. Okay? And so God wants to work with you individually, but he also wants to work through us corporately. The Bible says that the whole body is built up together. So everybody here is important. God expects unity, not rivalry. And so people will want that gift. But in every healthy body, all the limbs, all the organs, every part works together. And that’s the point. And we’ll talk about that more in the latter half of this chapter. But we must all work together for the common good.

So we got to have unity. However, unity doesn’t mean uniformity. We have different gifts and there are different functions. And that’s what he said. Verse 4, different kinds of gifts. Verse 5, different kinds of service. Verse 6, different kinds of work. But they all come from verse 4, the same Spirit. Verse 5, the same Lord, and verse 6, the same God. There is unity and diversity in God’s plan, and that’s what we need to understand about the church. The purpose of all of the things, all of the gifts, whatever you bring to the table is for the common good of the Church. Why am I stating that? Because sometimes we can think it’s for the benefit of this section of the church or it’s for the benefit of the speaker, whatever gift he has, or whatever he performs. This said, no, we all need to work together. We bring all of our gifts to the body of Christ. Competitiveness between various parts of the body makes no sense. It’s absurd. It doesn’t make any sense. Now, serves all the time. Yesterday I called Richard because one of his sisters was having trouble with the AC.

He said, Yeah, I’m trying to help her with that. I thought That doesn’t surprise me at all, Richard. That’s who you are. There are certain people who have that gift that does not preclude you and me from striving to be diving to be more that way because it’s in the Bible. Jesus got down and washed the disciples’ feet to show them an example of this is what you need to do. So we all need to make sure we’re growing in these things, although we may not have a specific gift. The other thing about this is that I may want a certain gift, but that may not be what the Spirit gifted me with. I’m not going to run a marathon in this life. Ever. I see people on the back of their cars, they have that little 26.2. I will never have that on the back of my car. Now, some of you may be thinking, but, Eddie, you’re still thin. You can probably run a marathon. And I say to you, no, you’re not listening. I am not going to run a marathon. It ain’t going to happen in this life. If I run one, it’ll be in heaven and I will run it in 10 seconds.

It’ll be done. But there are certain gifts I will never, ever have. There are certain gifts that you don’t have. You think, okay, well, how do I know whether I have a specific gift? I think there are ways you can know, and we’ll talk about this more, but I thought a couple of things. What do you like? What are you good at? What do others say you’re good at? Those are two really cool ways to at least begin thinking about it, but we’ll say more about that. I’ll leave that to Marcus. He’ll take you to the promised land with that, and he’ll do a great job with that. He says, Now to each one, the manifestation Spirit is given for the common good. All of this will be used in God’s service. And the list of gifts He gives is not a comprehensive list. There are other lists in the Bible that talk about this, and I’ll give you those in a moment. But one of the big things I want you to understand is the implication of what he’s saying is that no individual is endowed with all of these gifts except Jesus. I don’t care how talented you are, you don’t have all the gifts.

There are ways that you will grow and I say that to say this, you need the church, the church needs you because we don’t all have all the gifts and so we need to learn and grow from each other. And so keeping it practical again, let me give you another one. Do you see how important you are to the body of Christ? How are you using your gifts for the common good of the whole church? Now, some of you know that I tend to be the accused writer. At different times in my life, I could hear a question like that and I think, man, how am I that important? I mess up a lot. Just ask Lepatic. I probably messed up this morning and don’t even remember it. And so if you don’t remember, it’s hard to repent. But you could say, well, I mess up a lot. I don’t see what role I play. But guys, I’m telling you, God’s Word is true. Whenever you can’t reconcile something, go back to the Word. God’s Word is true. His Word says you’re important. His Word says that you are a key part of this thing.

I don’t care how badly you feel like you’re doing spiritually. God wants you here. He has a role for you to play. And the next person who’s baptized, God will take that person, that piece of the puzzle, and put that person in place. It’s good. I’m encouraged. You are important. And I don’t care how badly you feel like you’re doing spiritually. Get repent of it. Get right. God will use you. You are important. Now, the other place where it talks about these gifts, I’ll give these to you. I don’t have a slide, so you can write them down if you want to begin studying it. Romans 12, 6 through 8. The verses we’re looking at today, are 1 Corinthians 12, 8 through 10, and 28 through 30. And then two more, Ephesians 4, verse 11, and 1 Peter 4, verses 10 and 11. Those are just some of the places where you can begin studying. Let’s go ahead and look at these gifts. The first one he says here, he says, To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom. To another, a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit.

The Greek word is Sophia. Clemen of Alexander, I read a quote, this is the knowledge of things human and divine and of their causes. Aristotle, strived after the best things, using the best means. This is the highest form of wisdom, and it doesn’t come from yourself, it comes from God. And then the knowledge piece is the word gnosis in Greek, and this is more practical. It’s the knowledge to know what to do in any given situation. And does anybody have all wisdom? Does anybody have all knowledge? No. So even if you have these gifts, they will continue to grow and we need to strive for that. But here’s the secret. If you lack wisdom, and honestly, I feel like I do sometimes to God, I don’t know what to do with this one. And so I pray. I pray a lot for wisdom. But another thing you can do, read a proverb every day. How many Proverbs are there? 31. How many days in the longest month? 31. So if you read one proverb every day, you’d be gaining some wisdom. It’s a good thing. Read any of the wisdom literature. Read Job, read Ecclesiastes.

Those are great places to learn. Let’s go to the next one. It says, To another faith by the same spirit. Not talking about salvation faith. Hebrews 11, without faith, is impossible to please God, or faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the substance of things unseen. We know there’s a certain faith that’s required if you’re going to be saved. You got to have that faith. But this is talking about faith in the midst of tough things, difficult things that somehow you know how to remain optimistic. Maybe you’ve been through so much over the course of your life. I remember when I was out of work and God gave me a job in a week. So the next time I was out of work, I said, you know what, God is going to work again. He’s already shown that he knows what to do. So I was okay. But there are certain people that, man, their faith just lifts you up. These are people who can lift up the church. And probably somebody comes to mind for you. But I remember as I thought about this yesterday, I said, well, you know who comes to mind for me?

Reggie Price. And I thought I’m amazed that Reggie is the guy that no matter what’s going on, he’s got a bright outlook. He knows there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. He knows there’s that pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. It doesn’t matter how bad the storm is right now. That pot of gold is waiting for him. And when I shared, I said, Reggie, I’m thinking about talking about you this morning. He got tearful because he said God just answered a great prayer of his. And guys, that’s what we’ve got to be. We can give each other that courage. We can help each other with our faith. We don’t have to get it down in the dumps and feel like, oh, the sky is falling. You can do it. You can make it. And I think that’s what you see in Acts 27. Great story there. Paul is being taken to Rome. You remember they’re going along. The ship starts to be just pushed all around. It’s starting to break apart. The sailors and everybody in the captain, they’re all worried that they’re going to drown. And Paul says, Not a single hair from your head will be lost.

And I thought, man, oh, man, the Apostle Paul just said, it’s going to work, guys. It’s going to be okay. And that’s exactly what God did. And I got to ask you guys this because I’m old, so some of the movies I like are old movies. So how many of you know this old movie is The Core? All right, yes. We got three or four righteous people. The rest of you all go home and rent that movie and watch it. But it’s really interesting. In this movie, toward the end, two of the main characters are left. And then the guy says he’s confident that things are going to work out. And the woman says, Well, are you always optimistic about everything? And he says, Always. And she comes back and she says, Okay, let’s assess. We’re at the bottom of the ocean. We can’t communicate with anybody. All we can do is a blip. There’s less than a whale noise. And nobody even knows that we are alive. And I love the guy’s response. He says, Give me a minute on this one. But he was determined. I am going to stay positive. I’m going to believe it.

And God has just made people like that. And I wish I had time to just ask you to share about someone. But what I’d like to ask you to do is during the fellowship, if there’s someone like that for you, share that with them today. Tell them how much you appreciate them. If they’re not here, give them a call. Just fellowship with them and let them know. So the question I was asked is, who do you know who’s like this? Whose face comes to mind? Reach out to them. Okay, next one. It says gifts of healing. Gifts of healing were commonplace in the New Testament. In Mark Chapter 16, Jesus says, These signs will follow those that believe. They’ll pick up snakes, they’ll drink deadly poison. It won’t harm them. They’ll heal the sick. He said All of these things will follow those that believe. And there was a specific person to confirm your message. You got to remember, they didn’t have the New Testament. They couldn’t pick up the Bible and question what I’m saying. God says I’m going to confirm your message by allowing these signs to occur. In Hebrews 2, the Hebrew writer speaks of these signs in the past tense.

He said God confirmed his message by allowing these things to occur. So I believe by the writing of Hebrews, those things were already going away. And so this is not a gift that is around the day. You said, well, Eddie, I see these guys on TV and they’re healing. There’s also a concern about counterfeit miracles. And I’ll share this real quickly. I share with one brother, one situation where a lady was severely retarded in a wheelchair, went to one of these rallies and they wouldn’t let her get near the pastor. She came there to be healed, but they wouldn’t let her get near the pastor. You can guess why? Because it’s not true. All right, there are other forms of healing, though. God uses the medical community. I heard a brother share an incredible story during the fellowship about how he was sick and they said he had to have surgery. He trusted the medicine, trusted the advice, hasn’t had surgery doing great. We have people like Dr. Simone. She can fix whatever ails you. She’s shaking her head. I just have to mess with my sister. Anakin can fix everything. He can certainly straighten out your back.

If you need the bones in your back crack, Anakin can help you with that. So the medical community is there, but we also have natural means of healing that go on. People still call us an eldership. And they said, James, Chapter 5 says, if any one of you is sick, call on the elders and we will pray for people. We will anoint them with oil and pray. The challenge is I have to remind people that I am not sovereign, though. I am not God. I mean, literally, if that passage means that everyone I anoint and pray for will be healed, then none of you would ever die. We go, just when you’re ready to close your eyes, anoint Carlos, and he gets up. In other words, Paul in 1 Corinthians 12, said, three times, I prayed to you, God, to remove this. It may not be God’s will. By the same token, you got Hezekia, who God says, get your house in order, you’re going to die. You all remember the story. He turned his face to the wall. He prayed to God and God sent the Prophet back and said, telling me he’s got 15 more years of life.

I believe in prayer. Prayer works to heal people. But the miraculous healing that God said would confirm his word, is no longer around. Okay, next one, miraculous powers. This is similar. Miracles were done in the first century. This is not a sign that’s available today, despite what people say. I don’t believe it’s true. But another one is prophecy. And we’re talking about preaching. That’s what it gets at. Paul talks about this in his letter, preaching. I just found this great picture of this preacher that I just had to tell you, guys, about. Oh, it’s Marcus. I didn’t know I used you, Marcus. Marcus is a great preacher and I appreciate you very much. A lot of time when we think of prophecy, we think about foretelling the future and it’s more fourth telling. In other words, telling the truth, telling what the word of God teaches, not predicting the future. So we put Marcus up there so that you understand that. Distinguishing between spirits. You got to read Deuteronomy 13 if you have a chance. One of the scariest places I’ve ever read because this place talks about if a prophet comes to you and he claims that some special thing is going to occur.

And even if a miracle occurs and he’s trying to turn you away from the word of God, stone him. And I thought, Whoa. But that’s how God feels about his word. Read Deuteronomy 13. We got to be able to distinguish between the spirits. We got to look at that and people could do that at that point. Okay, tongue-speaking. I won’t spend much time on this. There were tongues on the day of Pentecost, tongues of fire. Tongues were languages. Most of the time people say, well, I’m speaking in an angelic language because they saw that in the Bible. But that’s a way of not admitting that they’re fabricating the whole thing. I’m not against anybody in particular. Don’t you all go home mad at me? But I’m just saying tongue-speaking was a language and these were languages that people could speak without having studied. And the interpreters could interpret a language that they were not familiar with. That’s what this is talking about. This is no longer a round today. Okay, in verse 11, just want to summarize this. It says, all these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and He distributes them to each one just as He determines.

The bottom line is God has given us all gifts. Everybody here has a gift. God wants you to use your gift. We need you to step up. When there’s a call for help, please, if you don’t feel like you got the gift of service, take advantage of the opportunity. Spirit will give you to grow in your service. Because when people come into the church and they see our love and they see our connection and they see our diligence and our desire to know God better and to walk with Him. And they see us helping each other and loving each other and coming alongside in a journey where something’s tougher than it won, they will exclaim, God is truly among you because I have never seen a church like this. And that’s what God wants to see. He wants his spirit, and his character to be known in this world. And so next time, we’ll go through the remainder of Chapter 12. I encourage you to read. Get ahead, get ready for that. Right now, I want us to shift our focus and talk some just about Communion before we take it. And if you need communion, the ushers can get you that.

John Chapter 17, I want to read this for you. Jesus is praying to the Father and he’s praying for us. He says, My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in Me through their message. Do you remember our mission, getting that message out? That all of them may be one father, just as you are in Me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. Jesus wants the world to believe in Him. He came up with the plan. He says I’m going to die. I’m going to be gone. I’ll be preparing a place for everyone who’s faithful to me so I won’t be on Earth. But they will do greater things than Me because I’m going to leave a piece of me in each one of them. And guys, if you know you haven’t been living up to that, then maybe you shouldn’t take communion this day until you repent. But if you know you’re striving to do what God wants and you’re ready to re-commit yourself to be what God wants you to be, to using your gift and really letting God do great things, then take the communion.

Take it with joy because God wants to rally beside you and help you in that journey. So let’s go to God in prayer and we’ll take communion.

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