OceanSide church of Christ
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WHAT IS YOUR MOTIVATION TO SERVE GOD?
TEXT: 2 Corinthians 5:10-12: For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad. (11) Knowing therefore the terror of the Lord, we persuade men; but we are made manifest unto God; and I trust also are made manifest in your consciences. (12) For we commend not ourselves again unto you, but give you occasion to glory on our behalf, that ye may have somewhat to answer them which glory in appearance, and not in heart.
THESIS: In view of the judgment of God, we should persuade men to follow Christ.
1. “For the Love of Christ constraineth us; because we thus judge, that if one died for all, then were all dead” (2 Corinthians 5:14).
a. How did Christ show His love?
i. He gave his life to purchase the church (Acts 20:28).
ii. According to his mercy he saved us (Titus 3:4)
b. When did Christ show His love?
i. While yet sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:8-9)
ii. Before we loved him, he first loved us (1 John 4:19)
c. God is love (1 John 4:8).
2. It is that love which motivates us to:
a. Persuade men.
b. Be made manifest.
c. Commend not ourselves.
3. It is God’s love that is perfected in us (1 John 4:12).
I. WE PERSUADE MEN FOR THE LOVE OF CHRIST.
A. To persuade men means to guide someone or convince someone concerning a certain point of fact.
1. This was the work of the apostles.
2. Persuading men to know the love of Christ.
B. Galatians 1:10 “For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.”
1. Paul understood his work as an apostle was not speaking to please men, but influencing them to follow Christ.
2. The terror of the Lord is that which motivates one to action, but not just facing judgment from God, but the type of fear which motivates one to reverence Him.
II. WE ARE MADE MANIFEST FOR THE LOVE OF CHRIST.
A. God knew of the apostles’ work (2 Corinthians 5:11).
1. He knew of their teaching.
2. He knew of their sincerity of heart.
3. He knew there was no guile in their teaching.
B. Paul knows that the Corinthians should know the same.
1. Because of the Judaizers, his work’s motivation had been questioned.
2. They should know his authority to teach came directly from Christ (2 Corinthians 5:5).
3. Paul would speak of his work as an ambassador for Christ (2 Corinthians 5:20).
a. An ambassador is diplomat of the highest rank.
b. One who has been given authority to speak that which he has been given.
c. Paul would only speak that which Christ had given him to speak.
C. Though we are not ambassadors, we do as Christians have a responsibility to speak that which has been written that others might believe (Matt. 28:18-20; Mark 16:15-16).
III. WE COMMEND NOT OURSELVES FOR THE LOVE OF CHRIST.
A. Paul would not give himself commendation for his works’ sake.
1. False teachers often glory in themselves.
2. Those who preach motivated by other means often glory in themselves as well.
B. Again, the love of Christ is that which motivates us to greater service.
1. John 8:49-50 Jesus answered, I have not a devil; but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour me. And I seek not mine own glory: there is one that seeketh and judgeth.
2. Paul had learned from Jesus that we should honor the Father and seek not our own glory.
3. The Father seeks and judges and knows the hearts of men; therefore, we are motivated to serve God and give Him the glory.
1. Paul serves the Lord motivated by the love of Christ and the terror of the Lord.
2. Paul was not beside himself, as some believed (2 Corinthians 5:13), but rather, he was simply following the Lord’s commands.
3. Often, the world will see us as being beside ourselves, different in numerous ways, but the truth is we are motivated by the love of our Lord.
a. To persuade men to know the love of Christ.
b. To make known the love of Christ.
c. To glory not in ourselves, but Christ.
4. One should be persuaded to obey the Gospel in view of the Judgment Day to come.
a. Believe Jesus is the Son of God (John 8:24)
b. Repent of sinful practices (Acts 17:31)
c. Confess Jesus before men (Matthew 10:32-33)
d. Be Baptized for salvation (Mark 16:15-16; Acts 2:38)
e. Live faithful and endure to the end (Revelation 2:10; Matthew 10:22)