Sermon Prepared by James McCullen
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What Does Real Commitment Involve?
1 Corinthians 15:58

NAS
58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord. NAS 
KJV
58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, for as much as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord. KJV
NIV
58 Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain. NIV
TLB
58 So, my dear brothers, since future victory is sure, be strong and steady, always abounding in the Lord's work, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever wasted as it would be if there were no resurrection. TLB

Introduction
The other night I heard Cliff Barrows the Minister of Music - Choir Director on the Billy Graham Team give this testimony. He said "we decided early on to have these 4 commitments.

We will have the best of financial accountability.

We will focus on moral purity in sexuality and every way.

We will work with and through the local church.

We will strive for integrity in publicity and news releases.

Then he said we focused on 1 Cor. 15:58. I looked up that verse and decided to preach from this great text. I will title this sermon What Does Real Commitment Involve?
 
 

1.   Real Commitment Involves Being Steadfast In Your Commitment. v 15 a


                        "Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, . . . "

NT:1476
hedraios (hed-rah'-yos); from a derivative of hezomai (to sit); sedentary, i.e. (by implication) immovable: KJV-settled, stedfast. (Biblesoft's Strong's Numbers)

"Keep on becoming steadfast, . . . "(from Robertson's Word Pictures in the N. T.)

Steadfast, . . . refers to their firm establishment in the faith; . . ." (from Vincent's Word Studies of the New Testament)

1 Cor 7:37 But he who stands firm in his heart, being under no constraint, but has authority over his own will, and has decided this in his own heart, . . . " NAS

Will Pounds Said the following. (1)
The thought is of a stable purpose, something that will not easily be disturbed, for the man's whole bent is behind it. The Corinthians were prone to fickleness, shifting without reason from one position to another.

A.    Real Commitment Steadfast In . . Convictions. v 58 a
 

        1.    What convictions do you really hold?
                a.    Money can't buy them.
                b.    Pressure won't move them.

Illustration
Friday Night I watched part of the movie The Witness. In this movie Harrison Ford is a police officer and is protecting a child who witnessed a murder. He decides to take the child and his mother back to her Amish - Mennonite home.

The police come looking for him and the chief tries to convince his sister that Harrison Ford has done something illegal in a drug deal. His sister say "anyone who knows my brother knows that is not true." This character was a man of conviction in Police matters.

B.    Real Commitment Steadfast In . . Communications. v 58 a

        1.    If you really believe it will make it's way out your mouth.
                a.    Your talk and walk will agree.

Illustration
I heard Homer Martinez share this story. A prominent pastor in Texas 35 years ago succumbed to sexual temptation. He divorced his wife and left town with the other woman.

As I remember Homer was a student at the college where this prominent minister's son also attended. All during much of the night this son cried out "no not my daddy," "no not my daddy," "no not my daddy," This minister was not steadfast.

Application

Man at McDonalds yesterday.
 

Martin Luther said "Here I Stand I can do nothing else."

Nathan Hale said "I regret I have but one life to give for my country

There is a price to pay of one who is steadfast; there it is an even greater price to pay for one not remaining steadfast.
 
 

2.    Real Commitment Involves Being Unmoveable In Your Commitment. v 15 b


                    "Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, . . . "

NT: 277 Only time exact word is used in the N. T. ametakinetos (am-et-ak-in'-ay-tos); from NT:1 (as a negative particle) and a derivative of NT:3334; immovable:
KJV-unmovable. (Biblesoft's Strong's Numbers)

"unshaken." Let the sceptics howl and rage. Paul has given rational grounds for faith and hope in Christ the Risen Lord and Saviour. (from Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament)

"unmovable. Refers to that establishment as related to assault from temptation or persecution.(Vincent's Word Studies N. T.)

Will Pounds Said the following. (1)
Immovable ­ not capable of being moved from its place. . . . The thought is of a stable purpose, something that will not easily be disturbed, for the man's whole bent is behind it. The Corinthians were prone to fickleness, shifting without reason from one position to another. Let them get a firm grip on the truth of the resurrection, . . . "

A.    Unmoveable In . . Purpose. v 15 b
        1.    This Person has a purpose beyond the world.

Illustration
Cecil B DeMile gave Billy Graham a blank contract to star in his Biblical Movies. Billy has the blank contract in a frame in his home. He did not take the offer. He said I have a much greater purpose.

Illustration
E. V. Hill the great preacher (pastor of Mt. Zion Baptist Church in Los Angles) was offered a governmental position. He said "they met him at the airport with a limousine and "wine him and dined" him (as much as you can wine and dine a Baptist preacher).

The next week he went to preach a revival and no limousine pick him up and the food etc. was mediocre but as he left to go back home he could report several people got saved. He said this is my purpose not being a governmental person.

B.    Unmoveable In . . Persuasions. v 15 b
        1.    What would persuade you to stop serving the Lord.
                a.    Occasionally a preacher or staff member will really get a raw deal. I have know some to
                        say I am just going to quit.
                b.    Then someone will say why are you serving?
                    1)    For man's applause or the glory of God.
                    2)    Ever so often I hear someone say "they hurt my feelings."
                    3)    I want to say  "get over it and serve the Lord."

Illustration
Did you ever hear the pulpit committee at F. B. C. Atlanta did not want Charles Stanley to be the new preacher? Charles Stanley was too conservative for them. The committee took him out to supper and offered him a large amount of cash to move out of town. Charles refused and the church called him overwhelmingly.

The growth of First Baptist Church Atlanta in the past 20 years is a testimony to the Lord using a person who was unmoveable.

Applications

How unmoveable are you? If it requires a time of study will you refuse to do it. If it requires some discipline in your life will you refuse to do it.

The world needs to see unmoveable Christians.
 
 

3.    Real Commitment Involves Being Bountiful In Your Commitment. v 15 c


Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord

NT:4052
perisseuo (per-is-syoo'-o); from NT:4053; to superabound (in quantity or quality), be in excess, be superfluous; also (transitively) to cause to superabound or excel: (Biblesoft's Strong's No.)

Will Pounds Said the following. (1) abounding ­ running over, more than is demanded, . . . ".

2 Cor 1:5 For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ. NAS

2 Cor 8:7 But just as you abound in everything, in faith and utterance and knowledge and in all earnestness and in the love we inspired in you, see that you abound in this gracious work also. NAS

A.    The . . Way of Bountiful Commitment. v 15 c
            ". . . always abounding. . . "
        1.    Year after Year.
 

B. The . . Work of Bountiful Commitment. v 15 c
            ". . . the work of the Lord. . . "

        1.    Not our pleasure but His Work.

Will Pounds said "These words (labor; strive) speak of intense toil that causes you sweat and
fatigue, and of straining for the finish line. There is a great work to be done, and we need to integrate the various parts of our lives around this work and throw ourselves into it with all of our might. (1)

C.    The . . Wisdom of Bountiful Commitment. v 15 c
            ". . . knowing that your toil is not in vain in the Lord."

Illustration
A man heard God say "I want your life's work to be a work of push on t a huge bolder. I will take care of all your wants and needs but you must faithfully push against this huge rock."

For all the years of his life he faithfully pushed against that bolder. On his death bed he said "Lord thank you for taking care of the needs of my family and my self and Lord you know I have faithfully pushed against that bolder all my life. He further said "Lord I feel like a failure because I have not moved that bolder an inch."

The Lord answered "Yes I know of your faithfulness and you are not a failure you did what I asked you to do." The man replied but Lord I didn't move the bolder." And the Lord said "I never asked you to move the bolder just to push against it."

Application

In a way that is a silly story. In another way it illustrated w truth. We are do be obedient and leave the results to the Lord.

Real Commitment Involves Being

Steadfast In Your Commitment.

Unmoveable In Your Commitment.

Bountiful In Your Commitment.
 
 

(1) Will Pounds Sermon Site on the Internet

http://www.abideinchrist.com/messages/1cor15pe.html