A New Year’s Challenge, Part II
Lord, Please Give Us Your Heart
1. Everyone is Born Separated from God in Sin.
a. They Actively Rebel. (Luke 15:11-15, Ephesians 2:3)
Ephesians 2:3, We too all previously lived among them in our fleshly desires, carrying out the inclinations of our flesh and thoughts, and we were by nature children under wrath as the others were also.
b. They Enjoy Sin, for a While. (Luke 15:13-17, 1 Thessalonians 2:12b)
1 Thessalonians 2:12b, …those who did not believe the truth but delighted in unrighteousness.
c. They Need Repentance. (Luke 15:18-20a, Matthew 4:17, Proverbs 28:13)
Matthew 4:17, From then on Jesus began to preach, “Repent, because the kingdom of heaven has come near.”
Proverbs 28:13, The one who conceals his sins will not prosper, but whoever confesses and renounces them will find mercy.
d. They Are in Conflict. (Luke 15:28-30, 1 John 4:7-8)
1 John 4:7-8, Dear friends, let us love one another, because love is from God, and everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. The one who does not love does not know God, because God is love.
2. The Father is Steadfast in Love.
a. He Desires and Seeks Restoration. (Luke 15:20b-24, 19:10, Isaiah 45:22)
Luke 19:10, “For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save the lost.”
Isaiah 45:22, Turn to me and be saved, all the ends of the earth. For I am God, and there is no other.
b. He Desires Us to Share His Heart. (Luke 15:28, 31-32, Matthew 5:44-45, Colossians 4:2-6)
Matthew 5:44-45, But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven. For he causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.
Colossians 4:2-6, Devote yourselves to prayer; stay alert in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us that God may open a door to us for the word, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains, so that I may make it known as I should. Act wisely toward outsiders, making the most of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you should answer each person.