Part 5 – How Do We Do This Together? (John 17:20-23)
September 2, 2018 Dr. Mark S. Hartman, Lead Pastor
John 17:20-23I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in Me through their message. 21 I pray that they will all be one, just as You and I are one—as You are in Me, Father, and I am in You. And may they be in Us so that the world will believe You sent Me. 22 I have given them the glory You gave Me, so they may be one as We are One. 23 I am in them and You are in Me. May they experience such perfect unity that the world will know that You sent Me and that You love them as much as You love Me.(NLT)
1. WE ARE FAMILY.
A. Ephesians 2:19…You are a member of God’s very own family … and you belong in God’s household with every other Christian.
1. Unity is distinctiveness going in the same direction to accomplish a common purpose.
2. Unity is when we choose to love each other and receive each other though we might look different, think different and sound different.
B. What is the basis of our unity?
1. Our unity is centered on Jesus.
Ephesians 2:14For Christ Himself has brought peace to us. He united Jews and Gentiles into one people when, in His own body on the cross, He broke down the wall of hostility that separated us.(NLT)
2. Our unity is centered around the Word of God.
2. HOW ARE WE TO TREAT EACH OTHER LIKE GOD DESIRES?
A. We live with a willingness to forgive and restore relationships that get bruised.
1. John 17:23I in them, and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, that the world may know that You send Me, and love them, even as You love Me.
2. Our unity says more than something about us. In the eyes of the world our unity says something about Jesus.
3. Part of loving each other means that we have an attitude of forgiveness and restoration.
B. We make a decision to care for each other who are struggling.
1. Galatians 6:1Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.
2. We are to have the attitude of meekness.Meekness involves two characteristics:
Ephesians 4:15 …speak the truth in love.
3. The second characteristic of a right attitude is a realistic view of my own weaknesses.
a. If you were away from God and couldn’t seem to get back on your own, how would you want someone else to treat you as they helped you back onto the path?
b. Matthew 7:12Therefore, however you want people to treat you, so treat them…(Golden Rule)
C. We make a decision to carry each other.
1. Galatians 6:2Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.
2. Bearing each other’s burdens is the act of bending down and helping pick up the load.
a. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort,4 who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.
b. Oftentimes God develops our ministry through our difficulties.
John 1:12But as many as received Christ, to them gave He the power to become the children of God, even to them that believe on His name.
The Action Steps I Will Take This Week Are…
I will treat others in this church with love and kindness.
I will forgive others in my church when relationships get bruised.
I will care for others in my church who are struggling.
I will go “the second mile” to get to know and better understand someone of a different ethnicity in my church.