Sunday, February 23, 2003

First Love - First Works

First Love - First Works


Revelation 2

1 ¶ Unto the angel of the church of Ephesus write; These things saith he that holdeth the seven stars in his right hand, who walketh in the midst of the seven golden candlesticks;

2 I know thy works, and thy labour, and thy patience, and how thou canst not bear them which are evil: and thou hast tried them which say they are apostles, and are not, and hast found them liars:

3 And hast borne, and hast patience, and for my name’s sake hast laboured, and hast not fainted.

4 Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love.

5 Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.

6 But this thou hast, that thou hatest the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.

7 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of God.

Three Steps to Recovery

Remember where we fall (or you will just keep falling again …)

Repent for falling (Repentance is a proper response for sin)

Redo - Renew the first works - back to basics

I. Remember Where We Fall

A. Genesis 3

1 ¶ Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?

2 And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:

3 But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.

4 And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:

5 For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.

6 ¶ And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat.

note: Listening to the wrong voices leads to making wrong choices

B. Tempting Voices (Very Subtle Voices)

1. Outside Voices

* hath God said?

* He didn’t mean it.

* you will be just fine - even better - and so will others

2. The Voice From Within

* it is good

* it is pleasing

* it is desirable (I want it - I deserve it)

* it is wise (it’s just the best thing right now)

* others can benefit from this too

Note: Considering the temptation keeps it alive and holds the door open to sin

C. James 1:14 & 15

14 But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.

15 Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.

D. We fall when we stray from the Jesus. Isaiah 53:6 All we like sheep have gone astray, we have turned every one to his own way

II. Repent - Turn from your own way to Christ’s way

A. Matthew 3:2 John the Baptist message was ‘repent’

B. Matthew 4:17 Jesus began to preach, He first preached ‘repent’

C. Mark 1:15 Jesus preached, “repent ye, and believe the gospel.”

D. Mark 6:12 The disciples were sent out to preach that “Men Should Repent”

E. Revelation 2 & 3 (5 of the 7 Church Problems could be fixed …)

1. 2:5 The Church In Ephesus - Repent or I will remove the light

2. 2:16 The Church In Pergamos - Repent or I will fight against you

3. 2:22 The Church In Thyatira - Repent or undergo great tribulation

4. 3:3 The Church In Sardis - Repent or loose it all

5. 3:19 The Church of the Laodiceans - Repent or be spewed out

Note: The majority of problems people face today at home, school, work, in marriage, business and child raising, in political, social settings and at church, could be completely done away with if people would just repent.

F. 2 Corinthians 7:10 For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.

III. Redo/Renew The First Works

A. What are the first works of Christianity?

B. What makes all that’s gone wrong - go right?

C. What changes a life, a problem, a marriage?

D. Your First Love - Jesus! (Revelation 2:4 - left first love)

1. Matthew 14:30 Peter cried out, Lord, save me

2. Romans 10:13 All who call on the Name of the Lord shall be saved

E. Jesus is Lord and Savior!

* He can save only because He is Lord

* Where He is not Lord, there is no Savior

* We cannot receive salvation without receiving The Lord

IV. Recovering From The Fall

A. The Damning Power of Sin

B. The Governing Power of Sin

C. God made Jesus your Savior, but you must make Him your Lord

1. If He is not Lord of all, He may not be Lord at all!

2. When we call upon Him as Lord, He saves us, delivers …

3. Make Him your First Love and following Him your First Work

4. Where did you fall; Repent; Redo your commitment to Him