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Sermon Guide – Philippians 1:12-18

Therefore we can be fearless, just like the lion. And daring. We as believers need to have some courage and daring upon the Word of God. Boldness is something that is lacking among the average Christian today. Most do not act like lions. They seem almost scared, sometimes, to let people know they are Christians. Many people have a wrong idea about this. Remember that first wonderful day when you found out what was available in Christ and you decided by an act of your will to accept it?

Did you feel like jumping? Perhaps you did inside. But it is not how high you jump but how straight you walk that is important after that. He may have said it with his lips, but what did he mean? When it came to the time of testing he did not stand. No, that is not what is meant by boldness. Remember Simon the sorcerer in Acts chapter 8?

Simon was a bold man in some ways, but is that the sort of boldness the Word is talking about?


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Philip went to Samaria to help the people receive the power of God, and he performed many miracles. Is that boldness? Simon had a certain belief in his own devilish power, but was that boldness? Obviously, a lot depends on what your boldness is based.

Is it on your own strength, or your desperation in a certain tight spot? Suddenly there is a sickness in your family or a great financial need.

The Plates of Brass:

Your boldness cannot be based upon desperation. You need this boldness all the time. We must be bold to the end of speaking about the good news. Paul was not bold because he was a brilliant man, educated in the top university of his day under the best teachers, nor because he had a tremendous command of oratory. Do you want to be a bold Christian or a cold Christian? Most people know that there is more than one kind of Christian. They think that what they see is the normal type of Christianity, but it is not. It may be the common type but in reality it is abnormal.

We have boldness. I do not have to pray for it, work for it, or hope for it. I already have it. Only one question remains: What am I doing with it? Paul indicates here that he could be much bold in Christ. Not once does he say he was bold because of anything he was or had done. He was bold because of what Christ had done for him. Christ made it available for him, he accepted it, and he put it into action in his life. They had great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus. The basis for our boldness is in Christ, not in ourselves.

Our boldness is also to be manifested towards God. The reason for this is that we belong to the family. We belong to the household of faith, and we have the family faith. You know what it means to belong to a family. You have certain rights. Prince Charles of England or the children of the President of the United States have no problem when they want to address the leader of their nation.

They belong to the family.

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Some of you get nervous when you have to talk to your boss, or pray in public, or get married. We sometimes feel like this concerning God, too. We forget that we belong to the family. What can I do about it? But you must manifest it in your fellowship with God.

Since God has made boldness available to us, should we not want to use it fully and enjoy the benefit it brings? Do we have confidence or boldness towards Him? Yes, the Word says so. And the particular area of boldness towards Him stated here is that if we ask anything of Him according to His will, He hears us. Then we know that we have the petition that we desired of Him. Yes, the righteous are bold as a lion.

The boldness of the believer is also manifested in our walk. She has no way to know the financial consequences of her choices. She is very much at the mercy of the masked invaders. They gather around waiting to hear what she chooses to do and their presence compounds the stress. Mike pulls her aside. He is calm. He is knowledgeable.

Loving others as you love yourself - Bold Café

He is experienced. He has spent years building houses and years dealing with emotional, anxious homeowners. He patiently describes the construction issues relevant to each decision. He explains the ease or difficulty of replacing or rebuilding, and the probable cost of each one.

He is careful to explain the dangers of mold but rationally and sensibly. He gives her options she has no other way of knowing she has. He explains which decisions can wait and which part of the work should be done while the masked invaders are present. For every choice she needs to make he gently emphasizes that he will support her decision. Mike has earned her trust. He is not in a rush. He does not pressure her. He leads his team of masked invaders to be careful and conscientious. Every exposed nail is pulled.

Every floor is swept and vacuumed. Everything that can be saved is saved. He genuinely wants to know if there is anything more she needs from him or his team. Serving with Mike in houses that were flooded by Harvey gave me an up close and personal look at how God can use each of us to show Bold Love. Like so many who led and served in the aftermath of Harvey, Mike is a quiet hero.

I know huge events like Harvey shine a spotlight on the kinds of gifts Mike has.


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But God has been preparing you and me for years in the same way he has been preparing Mike. She feels loved when she is served well, and she feels loved with words of encouragement. So this month I am writing notes of encouragement every day leading up to her birthday. Clear Creek Community Church celebrates a birthday this month too. What started as a church plant in has grown to a multi-site church reaching thousands of people each weekend.

The big idea behind Go Bold is to actively and generously show the love of Christ to our neighbors, friends, and community throughout and hopefully beyond. We started blogging about GoBold back in January and had no idea what lay ahead. Our words of motivation and encouragement seem weak compared to the flood waters of Harvey though.

Your response to Harvey has been…epic. Thousands of you have served thousands of our neighbors. These last few weeks the love of Christ has been visible in kayaks and big trucks and food and shelter and laundry and piles of debris and sweat and N95 masks. Harvey started this mess but the church of Jesus Christ will have the last word.

We love because He first loved us.

THE GOSPEL

Fight to continue to see people as God sees them. Fight to remain generous in the love of Jesus. What are you pursuing? Why are you pursuing it? Who are you pursuing it for? What flashes across your mind throughout your days that grabs your attention, and you go in hot pursuit after?