Quick Commands for Christian Living
1 Thess. 5:16-18
Intro: Paul’s epistles are filled with amazing doctrine, deep theology, concepts and truths that we are all still trying to sort out after 1950 years or so. Still, I love Paul’s epistles because they are also filled with tremendous Practical truth, personal exhortations and straight forward commands, like the three found in these three verses:
Pray Without Ceasing
In Everything Give Thanks
I call these: Quick Commands for Christian Living.
I. Live Joyfully (Rejoice evermore)
You do realize, don’t you that it is God’s Plan and Design and Will for Christians to live joyfully? There is no Biblical precedent for Christians to be constantly Sad; perpetually Sorrowful; living in a Fog of Doom and Gloom. God has done everything he can to provide every Christian with a Joyful Life.
1) Salvation Brings Joy
Ps. 21:1 The king shall joy in thy strength, O LORD; and in thy salvation how greatly shall he rejoice!
Ps 51:12 Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation...
Ps 132:16 I will also clothe her priests with salvation: and her saints shall shout aloud for joy.
Isa 12:3 Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation.
Hab 3:18 Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joy in the God of my salvation.
If you are a Christian, you should live joyfully. In order to be a Christian you must have experienced Salvation and everything about Salvation is Joyous.
2) The Holy Ghost Brings Joy
Acts 13:52 And the disciples were filled with joy, and with the Holy Ghost.
Rom 14:17 For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost.
Rom 15:13 Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.
1Thess 1:6 And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost:
How about that??! Every one who experiences the presence and power of the Holy Ghost knows about JOY.
If you are saved, you should be Living Joyfully.
If you have been born again by the Spirit of God you should be living Joyfully.
If you have been Filled with and baptized in the Holy Ghost you should be Living Joyfully.
II. Live Prayerfully (Pray without ceasing)
Again, the teaching of Jesus himself and of the Bible as a whole is that every Christian should Pray. We should Pray privately. We should Pray publically. We should Pray regularly. We should Pray fervently. We should Pray patiently.
“Pray always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit.”
“Praying in the Holy Ghost.”
“Pray without ceasing” You know that this command does not mean that we must quit our job so we can spend all day, every day on our knees praying. We are not to let the house turn into a landfill so we can spend all day every day praying. What it does mean is this: we should Live All Day, Every day in an Attitude and Atmosphere of Prayer.
D L Moody said that a Christian should be able to Preach, Pray or Die at a moment’s notice.
Certainly we need to Set aside specific time for personal prayer and devotion. BUT after that “duty” is fulfilled, we should live the rest of each day in a prayerful way.
Praying for God’s will and direction.
Praying for God’s blessing and protection.
Praying for God’s presence.
Praying for our family, our friends, our church.
Praying for our lost loved ones.
Praying for our community and our nation.
III. Live Thankfully. (In everything give thanks...)
Oh, how every Christian should live thankfully. After all, if we are living Joyfully, we realize its only because of God’s grace and blessings. AND if we are living Prayerfully, we are constantly aware of God’s great Care for us. Therefore, every Christian should be living Thankfully.
How sad it is for a professing Christian to be Pouty and Ungrateful.
How sad it is for a professing Christian to be Moody and Complaining.
How sad it is for a professing Christian to be Irritable and Unhappy.
There are at least 50 verses that exhort us to give Thanks to God from 1 Chron. - Rev. There are at least 45 more that tell us to give thanks to the Lord; from Lev.- Rev. According to Eph 5:20- we are to be “Giving Thanks always FOR All things unto God....”
Thanking God FOR all things.
James said that every good and every perfect gift comes from our Father above. God gives all good things and should be Thanked and Praised for them. The devil is responsible for sin, sickness and death and should be Blamed and Despised because of them. Because we are living a Human Life, we will have sickness and sorrow and disappointments and troubles that we must endure. However, God has already promised that he would Work all things together for our Good if we love him and are called according to his purpose.
Thank God FOR all things. And...
Thank God IN all things.
Thank God in the midst of all things; while going through all things. The old song says, “in the good times, Praise his Name; in the bad times, Do the Same, In Everything, give the King of kings all the praise.”
Paul says that living Thankfully is the Will of God in Christ Jesus concerning YOU. YOU are to live thankfully. Yes you;
Even though life has given you some bumps and bruises.
Even though affliction has laid you low.
Even though your relationships have not turned out like you desired.
Even though your family has troubles and trials.
Even though your earthly life seems far from perfect.
In everything give God Thanks.
Live Joyfully; Live Prayerfully; Live Thankfully.