Elder's Prayer - March 11, 2018
Please find below the notes from the Elder's Prayer this past Sunday.
1 Corinthians 6:9-11 says:
Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor the idolaters, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
Do you hear what Paul is saying to the believer? You used to be like this, but now you are like this? The behaviors that used to mark your lives no longer do? You used to be this way, but then God saved you and now you’re not that way any longer.
Because of the finished work of Christ – his sinless life, his sacrificial death, and his resurrection – you who were once known for your sin have been cleansed of your sin, set apart as God’s own child, and declared righteous, no longer guilty of your sin.
If you are a believer, God has changed you, and not just potentially, but actually.
No longer are your lives to be marked by your sin – your sexual immorality or your greed or your drunkenness. Now it is to be marked by the righteousness of Christ.
Father, our lives were marked by sin, darkness, wickedness, slavery to our own passions and desires. We were children of wrath, objects of destruction, enemies of God.
But you are full of love and grace and mercy. Because of your love, you sent your one and only son, Jesus Christ, not to condemn the world, but to provide salvation for it. We already stand condemned – our own sinful thoughts and actions provide all the evidence to prove that. But according to your eternal plan, Christ has provided a way for freedom from sin, including full payment for the penalty of our sin.
Thank you for lifting the burden of sin from us. Christ has made full atonement and paid the price for sin that we could never pay.
Thank you for adopting us as your children. Because of what you have done, we can now rightly call you ‘father’ and we can enjoy the intimacy with you that that term implies.
Thank you for giving us new life, a life that is marked by an increasing Christ-likeness, a life sustained by your grace, a life that can now be lived for your glory and the benefit of others.
Help us to live lives marked by righteousness and obedience. Help us to set aside sin that hinders us and pick up the works that are worthy of our calling.
Help those this morning that are struggling to understand how you could love them, especially how you could call them sons and daughters. Remind us that our adoption is true and sure and complete because of what Christ has done for us.
Help us to worship you this morning with hearts that believe, with hearts that are humble.
Remind us that you are eternal and unchanging – an ever present hope and never ending grace.