The last in our sermon series ‘Christianity Explored’. This week we will be focussing on ‘Decisions and Consequences’. Service led by Nathan Gordon and preaching from Brian Dickson.
Choices have consequences
In a free and democratic society, we are used to making decisions.
Most of these are day-to-day decisions that are mostly routine. Then there are those we take a longer time to consider, because those choices will have a great effect over a longer time span, such as what subjects should I study at school or university, which career or skill should I work towards.
We also make decisions that can have a profound effect on our lives, the consequences of which, we cannot possibly understand in full at the time we make them.
Those who may be exploring Christianity
For those who identify themselves as Atheists or those from a different religion, they may want to know what Christianity actually is? What do Christians believe and perhaps even, what makes Christianity unique? For those people it may be nothing more than an academic exercise, but for those who want to take the next step, they will have to respond to the gospel message. They will have to decide, to believe or to dismiss.
The ongoing challenges for Christians
When someone first becomes a Christian, many are often described as being ‘on fire for God’. They want to soak up everything they can about their newfound faith; diving into the bible, learning everything about Jesus at break-neck speed. They also usually get heavily involved in church life.
Over the years however, they slow down, they become ‘comfortable’ in their walk with the Lord and with their involvement of the church and God’s kingdom. In reality, it can be said they have lost the fire, the passion, the enthusiasm and perhaps, their desire to please God is not as high a priority as it once was. This is a situation we all need to be aware of.
Jesus said, if we love him, we would keep his commandments, this is perhaps one of the best barometers a Christian can have to ensure they have a healthy relationship with God.
When is the time to decide?
Procrastination is one of the obstacles to making decisions, and our ability to get things done, so the question needs to be asked, ‘Why NOT today’?
Only two choices
When it comes to salvation, there are only two choices, accept the gospel message, that Jesus is the Son of God and that he died on the cross for the sins of the whole world, and by repenting and believing in him for our salvation, our sins are forgiven, and he gives us the gift of eternal life. Now that’s something to get excited about.
Questions for further discussion
1. “‘The time has come,’ he said, ’ the Kingdom of God is near.
Repent and believe the Good News!’” (Mark1:15)
Jesus went around proclaiming the Good News – If someone asked you why you are a Christian, how would you answer so to be a good witness of the gospel?
2. If we want to spread the Good News, we must be prepared to warn about the Bad news. What is the Bad news in the following verses?
- a) Mark 7v20-23
- b) Mark 9v43-47
- b) Mark 10v26-27
3. “What good is it for a man to gain the whole wide world, yet forfeit his soul?” (mark 8v36);
- How would you express the value of the salvation of your soul?
- Describe how you would you compare your answer, with the cost Jesus paid on the cross
4. As a Christian, how should we express our love and gratitude for what Jesus has done for us?
Now read Mark 8:34 and John 15:9-10 and discuss any differences and any adjustments we should make.
Sermon Title: Decisions and Consequences
Bible Reading: Mark 8:34-37
Preacher: Brian Dickson
Worship Leader: Nathan Gordon