Weblink to http://www.desiringgod.org: Pastor John Piper Sermon
Below is an excerpt of Pastor John’s sermon: (his closing statements)
Seven Ways We Give Ourselves
In summary, Paul said in verse 8, “We were ready to share with you not only the gospel of God but also our own selves.” This is what I think God is calling us to in our life together at Bethlehem — especially in our small groups. God is calling us into these relationships not only because of your need to get, but because of your calling to give. To give yourselves.
- To take a risk of sharing your soul,
- to put away all deceit and exploitation,
- to renounce man-pleasing,
- to be done with flattery and covetousness,
- to feel tender, mother-like affections for people,
- to be holy, righteous, and blameless in our conduct,
- and to feel father-like desires to encourage and lead others into God-centered legacy.
You Have Something to Give
I know many of you feel like you have little or nothing to give. I am bold to say on the authority of God’s word: If you are a Christian, that is not true. You have Christ (Romans 8:10), you have the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19), you have the word of God (1 Corinthians 2:13), you have spiritual gifts (1 Peter 4:10), you are a new creation in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17), and you are a fountain (John 4:14; 7:38). This is not a matter of personality. This is a matter of faith. Trust him, and give yourself.
I tell you this because it is the path of deepest, strongest, longest joys. “Remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive’” (Acts 20:35). And Paul gave not only the gospel, but himself (1 Thessalonians 2:8).