Why Wear Pretty Shoes?

 

  1. Introduction:
    1. This is the test of genuine Christianity. It is not doctrine, ritual, singing, giving, praying, etc.
    2. There is no "project" you can pursue with the importance, results, and blessings as serving the brethren.
    3. The purpose of the church is our mutual help in walking with God – soulwinning (Proverbs 11:30).

  1. God makes great differences among men
    1. Differences in genetics, training, opportunities, knowledge, circumstances, etc.
    2. Differences in looks, smarts, temperament, personality, strength, speed, etc.
    3. We should be thankful, content, and receive others (Isaiah 45:9-10; I Cor 4:7).
    4. It is a law of nature – the sin nature - that befriends by advantage (Prov 14:20).

  2. God puts the differences together in His church
    1. Every member in a church was placed there by God Himself (I Cor 12:18).
      1. If there is someone who really irritates you, God gave them to you.
      2. If there is someone who really needs a lot from you, God sent them.
    2. Each flock of sheep has rams, lambs, ewes, and the sick, feeble, and deformed.
    3. It is a law of God there will always be poor to care for (Deut 15:11; John 12:8).
    4. The Holy Ghost makes a masterful illustration from the body (I Cor 12:12-27).

  3. We are to recognize the differences
    1. We may know the weak in the faith and treat them accordingly (Rom 14:1-4).
    2. We are to discern whether we are strong and another is weak (Romans 15:1-7).
    3. We may know whether we are spiritual and bear others' burdens (Gal 6:1-5).
    4. We may observe unruly, feebleminded, and weak among saints (I Thes 5:14).
    5. We are to respond to the differences and esteem them more highly (Phil 2:3-4).

  4. We are to serve the differences
    1. We serve them differently according to their gifts and needs (I Thess 5:14).
    2. Jesus taught us to invite the lame and the maimed to supper (Luke 14:12-15).
    3. We are to humbly get down to those members we think lower (Romans 12:16).
    4. We are to love all the children of God (I John 5:1) by service (I John 3:18).
    5. It is the law of our LORD Jesus Christ that we serve each other (Gal 6:1-5).
    6. True love does not seek her own; and such love is the greatest (I Cor 13:4-7).
    7. Our Lord Jesus taught (1) support the weak and (2) giving is better (Ac 20:35).
    8. We cannot show partiality for a person's outward advantage (James 2:1-10).
    9. Both testaments had "feasts of charity" for poor saints (Deut 14:29; Jude 1:12).
    10. Loving enemies is better than loving friends (Matthew 5:43-48; Luke 6:27-38).
    11. Jesus will make recognition of such service at the judgment (Matt 25:35).
    12. God recognizes and condemns hard hearts and tight hands (Deut 15:7-11).
    13. The rich (and a reason for hard work) are to give away (I Tim 6:18; Eph 4:28).

  5. The goal is a perfectly unified body in love with all parts growing together in grace.
    1. All members should share the joy and sorrow with each other (I Co 12:25-27).
    2. There are several advantages for being part of a proper body (Eccl 4:9-12).
    3. The contribution from each part in love will result in church growth (Ep 4:16).
    4. Consider the noble pattern of the Spirit's blessing at Jerusalem (Acts 2:41-47).