Forest Park Church
Scheme #4 Undivided!
September 26, 2021

Scheme #4 Undivided!

September 26, 2021

In the first book of The Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkien tells the tale of a small, diverse group who go on a mission to destroy the power of an evil Dark Lord. The Fellowship of the Ring is a band of two men, a dwarf, an elf, four hobbits and a wizard. Though they represent different races, they are united by their opposition to the Dark Lord.

Yet their unity is tested. In one scene, which didn’t make the movie, an intense conflict breaks out between the members. Harsh words fly. Axes are raised. Bows are bent. The mission is almost lost just as it is starting. When peace is restored, one member of the party says, in essence, ‘The Dark Lord shows his greatest power when he can divide those who oppose him.’

Satan is most effective if he can get us to waste our energy fighting each other instead of him.

Matthew 12:26

Since Jesus knew what they were thinking, he said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself is ruined. And every city or household divided against itself will not last.

God commands unity among believers because, once conflict enters the midst of any assembly or entity,

  • productivity and usefulness inevitably grind to a halt

  • The whole organization is weakened and becomes vulnerable to attack.

Christians are to be identified by the unity and peace they exhibit.

  • A fruit of the Spirit is peace (Galatians 5:22).

  • Christians are, as followers of the Prince of Peace, peaceful people (Matthew 5:9).

  • We are called to live in harmony with one another (Romans 12:16)

  • and, as far as it depends on us, to be at peace with everyone (Hebrews 12:14).

  • Jesus Christ is building His church (Matthew 16:18).

  • His “house” will stand; “his kingdom will not be destroyed, / his dominion will never end” (Daniel 6:26).

We are goin to answer two questions this morning in our quest to unravel Satan’s Scheme of Division.

1. What are the walls of division made of?

2. How do we pull them down?

I. Walls Of

What are the walls of division made of …….really?

The Berlin wall symbolized the separation of East from West with its menacing parapets and threatening barbed wire and its steel roots running down into the sewers.

  • It was made up of concrete segments with a height of 11 feet, usually with a concrete tube on top of it.

  • Behind that there was an illuminated control area, also called “death area.”

  • Refugees who had reached that area were shot without warning.

  • A trench followed which should prevent vehicles from breaking through.

  • Then there was a patrol track, a corridor with watchdogs, watchtowers and bunkers,

  • and then a second wall.

At least 100 people were killed at the Berlin Wall. But millions of people rejoiced when that wall came down on November 9, 1989.

Another famous wall is the Great Wall of China.

  • It’s more than 2,000 years old,

  • It remains one of the great wonders of the world. Stretching 4,500 miles, from the mountains of Korea to the Gobi Desert,

  • It was first built to protect an ancient Chinese empire from marauding tribes in the north.

  • But it became a symbol of Chinese ingenuity and will.

The difference is what are the walls made of……..

A. Walls of

Boundaries are intended to help you make hard choices before you are put in a position where making such decisions is extremely difficult.

  • For example, purity.

  • If you make the choice to be sexually pure, you will have to put up boundaries to protect this choice,

  • If you neglect to establish these kinds of purity-protecting boundaries beforehand, you will likely find yourself in a situation where you need to make a difficult choice about your purity in the heat of the moment – the most challenging time to attempt to make a rational or wise decision.

 

One reason we build emotional or relational walls is because strongholds have been constructed. We put up boundaries with trust.

  • Trust is built in small, everyday situations.

  • Trust is like a jar of marbles.

  • When someone does something trustworthy, they get a marble and

  • when they do something untrustworthy, they get one taken out.

But Many walls are actually constructed for another purpose. To Create Division between people.

B: Walls of Pride

  • We do not accept constructive criticisms.
  • We always want to be the center of attention.
  • We are vain about our physical appearance.
  • We are fond of name-dropping.
  • We are not teachable.
  • We do not listen to others’ advice.
  • We do not like to be surpassed by anyone.
  • We think you are too important to do mundane things.
  • We are critical to those who do better than you.
  • We think we are humble.

C: Walls of

  • We want It All
  • We Live to Excess
  • We break the Law

  • We avoiding Generosity

  • We lack empathy

  • We are never satisfied

  • We are given to manipulation.

  • We’re into the short run (Get rich Quick Ideas)

D: Walls of

  • We Constantly Judge People

  • We Don’t Yell, But…

  • We Replay Events And Assure Yourself You Were in the Right

  • We Feel Victimized All The Time

  • We Can’t Handle Feeling Vulnerable

  • We’re Over-Reliant on Coping Mechanisms

  • We’re Constantly Sarcastic

  • We Can’t Think Rationally Under Stress

  • Small Things Bother us More Than They Should

  • We Often Criticize

 

E: Walls of

  • We compliment others – but we know it’s insincere.
  • We secretly love it when things go wrong for others.
  • We downplay others achievements.
  • We make sure others know about our successes.
  • We intentionally point others in the wrong direction.
  • We gossip about others.
  • We make others look bad in front of people.
  • We’re overly competitive.
  • We Complain a Lot.
  • We give Backhanded Compliments.

II. Wall

Ephesians 2:11-22

Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called “uncircumcised” by those who call themselves “the circumcision” (which is done in the body by human hands)—remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.

For he himself is our peace, who has made the two groups one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility, by setting aside in his flesh the law with its commands and regulations. His purpose was to create in himself one new humanity out of the two, thus making peace, and in one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility. He came and preached peace to you who were far away and peace to those who were near. For through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit.

In verse 14 Paul says that when Christ died, he dismantled the dividing wall of hostility.

2 Corinthians 5:17

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.

These are people that have a transformed perspective and allow the things they are for to become greater than those things they are against. This is the key to destroying Divisions and achieving unity.

III. What ?

Philippians 4:8

Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. 9 What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.

These concepts will change your home, Church, Workplace, World.

A: For the

John 8:31-32

So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

B: For the Gospel

Luke 9:46-50

An argument arose among them as to which of them was the greatest. 47 But Jesus, knowing the reasoning of their hearts, took a child and put him by his side 48 and said to them, “Whoever receives this child in my name receives me, and whoever receives me receives him who sent me. For he who is least among you all is the one who is great.”

49 John answered, “Master, we saw someone casting out demons in your name, and we tried to stop him, because he does not follow with us.” 50 But Jesus said to him, “Do not stop him, for the one who is not against you is for you.”

C: For the

John 3:16-17

For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that everyone who believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.

D: For Lives to be

Ezekiel 36:26

And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.

E. For the Faithful to be

1 Thessalonians 5:11

“Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”

Romans 15:5

“May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had.”

Conclusion:

Eph 2:19-22

Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and strangers, but fellow citizens with God’s people and also members of his household, built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit.

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