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A Declaration of Dependence

July 4, 2017

When our founding fathers signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776, they were declaring that no longer would they be subject to the king of England; no longer would they be under the authority of a dictator. They would set up their own government; a government of the people, by the people and for the people. The people, for once, would have freedom; life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, something never before attempted in human history. Individualism is something Americans take pride in. We can make our own decisions, plot our own courses, plan our own lives just the way we want it to be.

                Individualism in that regard is a good thing, a positive thing, something worth fighting for. But when you and I surrendered ourselves to the Lordship of Jesus Christ, we made a different declaration. Rather than declaring our independence, we made a declaration of dependence. We declared that we could do nothing in accordance with God’s will apart from God Himself empowering us to do it. 

 

In John 15, Jesus shows us that we are dependent on Him.

1. We Depend on the Life of Christ (Vs. 5)

  • Jesus used the vine/branch analogy to illustrate that it is His life flowing through us that brings forth fruit.
  • Jesus is like the root of a tree that is firmly planted in rich soil bringing nutrients up to the branches.
  • In the flesh, we are dead in trespasses and sins. It is the Holy Spirit that quickens, or gives life!
  • If we walk in the Spirit, we will not fulfill the lusts of the flesh.

2. We Depend on the Love of Christ (Vs. 9-10)

  • It was because of God’s great LOVE for us that He sent His only son into the world to die for our sins.
  • Jesus LOVED us enough to bear the cross for our redemption!
  • It is through the love of Christ that He makes intercession for us to the Father!
  • It is through the love of Christ that we receive mercy, grace, forgiveness and compassion!
  • It is through the love of Christ that we are showered with spiritual blessings!
  • If we do what He’s told us to do we will abide or remain or dwell in His love!

3. We Depend on the Link of Christians (Vs. 12)

  • Jesus commanded us to love one another as He has loved us.
  • He is the head of the body, which is the Church.
    • “The body does what the head tells it to do. Any other behavior is unhealthy… The Holy Spirit is our lifeblood as God’s power flows to the various parts of the body. But if my hand, or your hand, is out of joint, it doesn’t get the transfer of life. Neither do we get the full manifestation of the Spirit in our lives when we’re disconnected from one another.” (Dr. Tony Evans)

Hebrews 10:24-25 And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: 25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching

 

True freedom, true liberty only comes to those who make a declaration of dependence… dependence on Jesus Christ as the head and dependence on one another as a healthy, functioning body. We cannot make it through this life as believers independent of those two relationships.

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