Monday, November 03 2008
This was the sermon preached at Cornerstone Chapel on 11/02/08...
2 Corinthians 5:17 Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.
A London businessman told the story of a warehouse property he was selling. The building had been empty for months and needed repairs. Vandals had damaged the doors, smashed the windows, and strewn trash around the interior.
As he showed a prospective buyer the property, Clegg took pains to say that he would replace the broken windows, bring in a crew to correct any structural damage, and clean out the garbage.
"Forget about the repairs," the buyer said. "When I buy this place, I'm going to build something completely different. I don't want the building; I want the site."
The story of this building is the story of every man. On the outside we look damaged, broken and in disrepair. Isaiah 64:6 states…
But we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away.
Perhaps, we have the scars to show that we have tried to fix ourselves, but like many things in our lives we have continuously failed. We have failed and our hopelessness, loneliness and despair become overwhelming. Simply put, our building has been ravaged by the vandals of life. The Bible states in Psalms 39:11…
…surely every man is vanity.
According to Strong’s Concordance the word “vanity” means emptiness. Every man is born with an emptiness that they cannot fill, but the Bible is a book of optimism and hope for it states Psalms 39:7 states…
And now, Lord, what wait I for? my hope is in thee.
The Bible tells of a man named Saul. He was murderous and evil killing those that preached Jesus Christ. He thought that he was right as he watched many die for the cause of Christ, but one day he met Jesus. Acts 9 states…
1 And Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went unto the high priest,
2 And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem.
3 And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven:
4 And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?
5 And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.
6 And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord said unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.
17 And Ananias went his way, and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, even Jesus, that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost.
18 And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales: and he received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized.
It was this same man that wrote…
38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Paul went from murderous thug to the greatest missionary and apostle writing much of the New Testament. His life is a testimony to the grace and love of Jesus Christ that is life changing. Nothing was ever the same.
Testimony: Cornerstone Chapel sent out mailers last year offering prayer. On Sunday, a lady came to the church from those mailers and received the Holy Ghost. She was praying at the altar and when I asked if she had the Holy Ghost with the evidence of speaking in tongues, she said "no". When asked if she wanted it, she said "yes" and instantly started speaking in tongues. God is doing miracles in our community.