PUT ON BROTHERLY KINDNESS Message 7 of 8: Dress Code of A Christian sermon series II Peter 1:3-11 NIV

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1 MESSAGE FOR SUNDAY MORNING, APRIL 5, 2009 CHRISTIAN HOPE CHURCH OF CHRIST, PLYMOUTH, NORTH CAROLINA MESSAGE 7 OF 8: Dress Code of A Christian sermon series by Reggie A. Braziel, minister PUT ON BROTHERLY KINDNESS Message 7 of 8: Dress Code of A Christian sermon series II Peter 1:3-11 NIV Please turn in your Bibles to II PETER chapter one and just hold your Bibles open to that passage. We will get to our scripture in just a moment. Today we are continuing with our series: The Dress Code of A Christian. Here in II Peter chapter one we are looking at eight virtues or eight spiritual garments every Christian should wear in order to be properly dressed in a spiritual sense. Thus far we have looked at six of these garments. *We are to PUT ON FAITH For without FAITH it is impossible to please GOD. *To our FAITH we are to ADD GOODNESS the kind of goodness the Holy Spirit produces within us as we enter into a close, personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. *To GOODNESS we are to ADD KNOWLEDGE. God wants His people to be a knowledgeable people. That means we must continue to grow in our knowledge of God, our knowledge of Christ Jesus, and our knowledge of God s Holy word. *To KNOWLEDGE we are to add SELF-CONTROL. The hardest person in the world to say NO to is ourselves. That is why we must surrender our weaknesses and sinful desires to the control of God s Holy Spirit who lives within us.

2 *To SELF-CONTROL we are to add PERSEVERANCE. God s people aren t quitters! BY FAITH we are to persevere even in the midst of great trials and seemingly hopeless circumstances. *To PERSEVERANCE we are to add GODLINESS. When the world looks at you and me they should see the very nature and character of God Himself living in us. This now brings us to our SEVENTH GARMENT. Today Peter challenges us to PUT ON BROTHERLY KINDNESS. Now let s look at our scripture text.. Will you bow with me in prayer? II Peter 1:3-11 ************************************** Put On Brotherly Kindness Back in mid-february (2009) my father-in-law and I went to the Winter Bluegrass festival down in Kinston. (NC) As we were getting ready to leave late that evening, my father-in-law decided he wanted to buy a DVD that was being sold by one of the bands that had played that day. While he was standing in line, an elderly man walked over to me and just started talking. Why he picked me, I don t know. Or at least I didn t know at the time. Though I was a total stranger, he started telling me his story. My two sons from Virginia were supposed to be here with me today, but something came up at the last minute and they couldn t make it. And can you believe these bluegrass people wouldn t refund my money for their tickets?

3 After blowing off some steam about not getting a refund on his unused tickets, the man s thoughts then turned to his wife. My wife was supposed to be here with me today too, he continued. Yeah, we ve been coming to this festival every year for the last fifteen years. (PAUSE) I noticed tears starting to well up in the man s eyes. Then with quivering lips he said, You know she died three weeks ago? I said, Oh, I m so sorry. He said, Yeah, we had been married 53 years. We found out right after New Year s she was sick and two weeks later she was gone. I realized then, this man wasn t looking for advice or counsel from me. He really didn t need for me to say anything at all. He just needed to talk to someone. He just needed someone to listen. He talked a few more minutes. And as he walked away he thanked me for listening. He walked just a few feet before he encountered someone else My two sons from Virginia were supposed to be here with me today he told the stranger. And the story continued ******* I said a moment ago I didn t know why that man chose to share his story with me that day. I think now, I do know why. I don t believe our encounter was by coincidence, I believe God planned for our paths to cross that day. You see, all around us there are people who have a story to tell. People who have a broken heart. People who are carrying a heavy burden. People who are just plain lonely. And their greatest need is for believers like you and me to PUT ON THIS GARMENT OF BROTHERLY KINDNESS and be their friend, even if just for a few brief moments. *******

4 As we think about PUTTING ON BROTHERLY KINDNESS this morning, let s consider these three thoughts: I. The Definition of Brotherly Kindness II. The Demand For Brotherly Kindness III. The Demonstration of Brotherly Kindness. ********* First let s consider I. The Definition of Brotherly Kindness 1. Brotherly Kindness is such a sweet sounding term isn t it? But what does it mean? 2. Actually the origin of this word brotherly kindness comes from two Greek words.philos Adelphos (Filose Adel-phoss) It is from this same word we get our English word Philadelphia, which is known as The City of Brotherly Love. Let s look at these two words Philos and Adelphos separately and I think we ll get a clearer picture of what Peter meant by brotherly kindness. Philos means friend or to befriend. From this same word we get the Greek word phileo which means to love.the kind of love families have for one another. Adelphos means a brother or a comrade.

5 Romans 12:10 Be devoted to one another in BROTHERLY LOVE. I Thessalonians 4:9 Now about BROTHERLY LOVE we do not need to write you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to LOVE each other. Hebrews 13:1 Keep on LOVING each other as BROTHERS. 3. So Peter is telling you and me to put on Philos Adelphos.. love each other as though you were flesh and blood relatives. ************* Secondly let s consider II. The Demand For Brotherly Kindness First let s consider.. (A) THE DEMAND FOR BROTHERLY LOVE INSIDE THE CHURCH. As Christians, you and I have two families. We have our physical family in other words all those related to us by blood or marriage. And we have a spiritual family, or those we are related to by the blood of Jesus Christ. Jesus gives us some clear insight into this in Matthew 12: Turn with me to that passage and let s read it together Read: Matthew 12:46-50

6 What Jesus is saying is My spiritual family is my real family. They are the family I will be with for all eternity. The same is true of you and me. The Church is our real family. The Church is our eternal family. Our biological family may or may not be part of our spiritual family. Hopefully this won t be the case, but sadly some of our biological family may not be with us in eternity. As brothers and sisters-in-christ, you and I are in this race together. We all have our problems. We all have our struggles. We all have burdens to bear and griefs to share. We need each other. You need me and I need you. And no matter what our differences we may have from time to time..no matter what things we might disagree over.it is absolutely imperative that you and I treat one another with brotherly kindness or brotherly love. When one suffers we all suffer. When one grieves we all grieve. When one is hurting we all hurt. When one is in need.we all feel that need. THAT IS BROTHERLY KINDNESS!!! When one hurts us.we must forgive. That is brotherly kindness. When one is out of line or causing problems in this Church family, we must lovingly confront them. That is brotherly kindness. We are FAMILY! We are FELLOW TRAVELERS! We are FELLOW CITIZENS of the heavenly kingdom. We are FELLOW SOLDIERS fighting in the same war. We are FELLOW RUNNERS running in the same race. We are FELLOW WORKERS working in the same field.

7 We all have the same GOAL! We are all headed toward the same DESTINATION! We all live with the SAME HOPE! We all SERVE THE SAME MASTER! Therefore we must show BROTHERLY KINDNESS or BROTHERLY LOVE toward one another until the race is completed! But not only is there a demand for brotherly kindness inside the Church.. (B) Consider THE DEMAND FOR BROTHERLY KINDNESS OUTSIDE THE CHURCH. Turn with me to II TIMOTHY 3:1-5 What Paul is painting a picture of here is a world that is going to become increasingly more impersonal and detached as the return of Christ draws near. Unfortunately this is the kind of world we are living in right now. *Some of us can remember the days when we would go to a gas station and talk to the attendant who pumped the gas for us cleaned our windshield..and checked the oil in our vehicle. Now you can go to a gas station and you don t even have to talk to anyone. You can just put your credit card or debit card in the slot on the gas pump fill your tank and drive off without speaking to another human being.

8 *We see the same thing at THE BANK. Instead of communicating with a real live human being, we can communicate with a computer called an ATM.or Automatic Teller Machine. And do you know what? I have never once had an ATM ask me if I was having a good day or how the wife and kids are doing. * Many stores now have SELF-CHECKOUTS where you can scan and bag your purchases and pay for them with a credit card or debit card and walk out of the store without any contact with another human being. * And lets say you have to call a company with which you do business with a question regarding you bill. Chances are you are going to get an automated telephone answering service which will give you three or four options to choose from. And have you noticed the very last option the machine gives you is the option to talk to a real person. And if you choose that option, you may have to wait minutes before you hear a real voice. Unfortunately brothers and sisters this is the world we live in. And according to what Paul said in II Timothy 3, this cold, impersonal human-to-human detachment is going to become more and more a part of life here on earth.

9 People are growing more suspicious and more distrusting of their fellow humans. That is why there is such a demand for BROTHERLY KINDNESS. Galatians 6:10 Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to ALL PEOPLE, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. The Lord wants us to especially treat our spiritual family with BROTHERLY KINDNESS and LOVE, but He also desires that we treat those outside our spiritual family with brotherly love and kindness too. Well we have considered THE DEFINITION OF BROTHERLY KINDNESS. And we have considered THE DEMAND FOR BROTHERLY KINDNESS. Finally and briefly, let s consider. III. The Demonstration of Brotherly Kindness 1. There are numerous ways to demonstrate brotherly kindness. Let me give you just seven. (A) Brotherly Kindness will compel me to FORGIVE those who have wronged me. Ephesians 4:32 BE KIND and compassionate to one another. FORGIVING each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

10 (B) Brotherly Kindness will compel me to TREAT others with the same KINDNESS I would want them to treat me. MATTHEW 7:12 So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the law and the Prophets. (C) Brotherly Kindness will compel me to HELP those who are in PHYSICAL need. JAMES 2:15,16 Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to him, Go, I wish you well; keep warm and well fed, but does nothing about his physical needs, what good is it? (D) Brotherly Kindness will compel me to GUARD what I say about people, especially those of my own Church family. EPHESIANS 4:29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is HELPFUL for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. (E) Brotherly Kindness will compel me to carefully guard my INFLUENCE so as not to be a stumbling block to weak Christians or non-christians. I CORINTHIANS 8:9,12,13 Be careful however, that the exercise of your freedom does not become a stumbling block to the weak When you sin against your brothers in this way and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ. Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother to fall into sin, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause him to fall.

11 (F) Brotherly Kindness will compel me to set aside my selfish desires for the good of my Church family. PHILIPPIANS 2:3,4 Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others. And let me give you one more. (G) Brotherly Kindness will compel me to encourage others every opportunity I get. I THESSALONIANS 5:11 Therefore ENCOURAGE one another and BUILD EACH OTHER UP, just as in fact you are doing. Brothers and Sisters, let s look for opportunities to DEMONSTRATE BROTHERLY KINDNESS every chance we get...be a listening ear!..be an encouraging voice!..be a shoulder to lean on!..be a helping hand!..be a beacon of hope!..be a good neighbor!..be a good friend ************************* C O N C L U S I O N Probably many of you can remember that popular TV show back in the 80 s called Cheers. Now I assure you I am not here to promote or endorse a TV show about a bar in downtown Boston.

12 But there was something about the words in the theme song on that show that struck a chord with me. The words went something like this Making your way in the world today takes everything you ve got. Taking a break from all your worries, sure would help a lot. Wouldn t you like to get away? Sometimes you want to go where everybody knows your name, And they re always glad you came. Yo wanna be where you can see, Our troubles are all the same. You wanna be where everybody knows your name. You wanna go where people know, People are all the same, You wanna go where everybody knows your name. Brothers and sisters, isn t that the kind of place the Church should be? PUT ON BROTHERLY KINDNESS!

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