OceanSide church of Christ

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One Thing

Wayne Rodgers



   A. We often use the expression "one thing" for sake of emphasis.

      1. Parents say to children: "This one thing you must do."

      2. Or, we might say, "I tell you one thing..." "I know one

         thing..." "Above all else, this one thing must be done..."

         "Don't forget this one thing..."

   B. The expression "one thing" is used for emphasis on a variety of subjects throughout the Scriptures.

      1. Let us study these and make application to our daily lives.

"One thing I have desired..." (Psalm 27:4)

"One thing you lack..." (Mark 10:21)

"One thing I know..." (John 9:25)

"But one thing is needful..." (Luke 10:42)

"But this one thing I do..." (Phil. 3:13)


I. "One thing I have desired..." Psalm 27:4 

   A. Above all else, the one thing David desired was to dwell in the house of the Lord, the place of worship.

      1. To David, it was a joyful experience to be able to worship God. It was not a boring routine.   

         (Psalm 122:1)

   B. David desired to dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of his life.

      1. Many people of the world would rather dwell in sin all the days of their life.

         a. Many prefer to dwell in a state of adultery by living with a companion who doesn't belong with them.

         b. Many prefer to dwell in error rather than follow truth. (Jer. 5:31)

   C. David also desired to behold the beauty of the Lord.

      1. Many desire other beauties.

         a. Some desire fleshly beauty because it appeals to the flesh. (Prov. 31:30)

         b. Some desire the beauty of nature more than God because they are out fishing, hunting, hiking, or sightseeing, when they should be in worship.

      2. David had his priorities right. He knew that a right relationship with God brought happiness.

             (Psalm 144:15; 146:5 )

   D. David wanted to inquire in the temple of the Lord.

      1. Many today want to inquire from some professional (the ungodly), rather than the Lord. (Psalm 1:1)

         a. King Saul went to inquire of the witch of Endor. (1 Sam. 28:7-10)

      2. We can inquire of the Lord today by seeking to know His will as revealed in the Scriptures.

         a. By looking into the perfect law of liberty and continuing in it, we will be blessed. (James 1:25)

   E. Where do we stand in our desire for worship?

      1. Do we say with David Ė (Psalm 122:1)

         a. Or, is it, I was glad when they said, "Let's go to the ball game," "Let's go fishing," "Lets's go to the movies," or "Let's go shopping."

      2. Let us build more interest in spiritual things. Let us all do our part in making our worship services enjoyable and desirable.


II. "One thing you lack."  Mark 10:21

   A. This young man measured up unusually well.

      1. He had kept the commandments from his youth.

      2. He was strongly interested in gaining eternal life.

   B. However, he lacked one thing.

      1. Jesus knew the very thing this young man needed.

      2. His problem was the love of money, wealth, and possessions.

   C. What about us? Is there one thing that we lack?

      1. Nearly everyone has at least one problem.

      2. If we do, the Lord would say to us, "One thing you lack."

      3. What are some of these?

         a. habits, fleshly and worldly desires (wanting that which the world has to offer)

         b. It might be lack of study of the Scriptures.

         c. When we examine ourselves in light of Godís Word is there: "One thing we lack."


III. "One thing I know." John 9:25

   A. Here, in this rendering, we see the once-blind man being questioned regarding the things that had transpired.

      1. Jesus of Nazareth had healed him.

      2. The Jews accused Jesus of being a sinner.

   B. However, the once blind-man testified that he did know one thing.

      1. He had been blind, but now he sees.

      2. As a result of this, he went on to demonstrate great faith.

  C. Application: We may not know much about a lot of different things, but one thing we do know: "Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God."

      1. Being convicted of this fact, we live a life according to His will.

      2. He is the Lord of our lives. We have confessed His name. (Rom 10:9; 1Ti 6:11-14; Heb 4:14 )

      3. Like the blind man, we were once in darkness (blinded by sin), but now we see (we have the light of life) through Jesus Christ. This one thing we know.   (John 8:12)


IV. "But one thing is needful." Luke 10:42

   A. Martha was trying to be a good hostess.

      1. She complained because Mary was not helping her.

      2. Jesus' reply: Vs. 41-42.

   B. Mary was wise enough to see what was more important.

      1. Mary is mentioned in three different scenes in the N.T., and each time we find her at the feet of Jesus: here in this reading, at the anointing of Jesus' feet (John 11:1-2; Matt.  26:6-13), and at the raising of Lazarus (John 11:32).

   C. There can be no doubt that the preparing of meals is important, but not as important as feasting on the Word of God.

1. One brother tells of a sister who stayed home from worship to prepare a meal for the preacher. After hearing what she had done, the preacher refused to go to her house that day. Iím sure that she was upset; nonetheless, she learned a valuable lesson.

   D. Many of us fail to put the Lord first in our lives.  Preachers,

      1. Like Martha, we are "worried and troubled about many things."

      2. The cares of the world will choke out the Word of God. (Luke 8:14)

      3. We should be careful, worried, or anxious for nothing. (Phil. 4:6)

      4. If are concerned about too many worldly things, and if Jesus

         were her today, He would say, "One thing is needful...choose

         that could part which will not be taken away from you."


V. "But this one thing I do..." Phil. 3:13

   A. Paul encouraged us to imitate or follow him as he followed

      Christ.  (1 Cor. 11:1; Phil. 4:9)

      1. One thing he did. He forgot the past and reached forward to the things that lay ahead.

      2. When Paul wrote this, he was old and a prisoner in Rome.

      3. He had accomplished many things for the Lord in his life; yet he still wanted to do more.

      4. He always put forth great effort to reach the mark.

   B. There are many things we should forget and reach forward to the goal.

      1. Forget one's former denominational religion. Forget it and follow after truth.

      2. Forget past hurts and reach forward to love.

      3. Forget past mistakes and reach forward to righteousness.

      4. Forget past accomplishments and reach forward to more work in the Lord.

    C. We, too, like Paul, should strive with great diligence to reach that mark.  (Luke 13:24; 2Pe 1:10-11)



   A. Thus, we have learned some spiritual applications from a very common expression, "one thing."


1. "One thing I have desired" - We need to love and enjoy worship.


2. "One thing you lack" - We need to clean it up, whatever it is.


3. "One thing I know" - We know that Jesus is God and made the worlds and we will continue to gladly confess Him in our lives.


4. "But one thing is needful" - Let us always choose that good part.


5. "But this one thing I do" - Let us daily press toward the goal of eternal life.