Jesus says, “I am the gate, I am the good shepherd, I come that you may have life and have it abundantly.” He presents himself as good shepherd who lay down his life for the sheep. And he died for them.
John tells us the thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. But Jesus came and comes so that we may have life and enjoy living abundantly.
People say the abundant life goes with hosting a big party with drinks. You can’t find abundant living in a can or a bottle. You can’t find abundant life in a pill or a drug. Abundant living is only found in Christ Jesus, our Lord.
John says the thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. Through the devil’s hunger for money and drugs; he steals, kills, and destroys people. But God’s grace is full of love and mercy. Jesus says, “I come that you may have life, and have it abundantly.”
Living the abundant life is service to God and to others. A lot of people don’t want to serve nobody. They won’t do anything for anybody but themselves. If we serve Christ, we want to serve others. Serving others, we learn how to live abundant life.
Abundant living is a total surrender to Christ. A lifetime promise to serve Christ. If you are in good health and wealth, a good family and a fancy home, but never experience the saving grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, you are not living! I hate to say that some of us today are not really living! We are like dead dried bones in the valley. So, anything dead ought to be buried. And I’m so afraid that some people need to be buried today.
Abundant living does not exist until we have fully committed ourselves to Christ. Our commitment must oppose temptation, and everything that opposed the Word of God.
I’m not talking about just paying lip service. A lot of people say they will live and surely die for God. But when it comes time to face the challenges of this life, when it comes time to be fully committed, they are nowhere to be found! They either have to commit to the world, or commit to God. There is no in-between.
Some people in some churches are misleading people into thinking that they are the church of God, but they are lukewarm that God doesn’t have any part in it.
Some churches have too many halfhearted people. These people think they are getting away with their lack of commitment to God. But the Bible says that halfhearted Christians are lukewarm. No man can serve two masters. He has to hate the one and love the other. It is sad to say there are too many people who think they are right with God, but they are lukewarm and they don’t even know it.
When you accept Christ as your Lord and Savior, you are just beginning to really live the abundant life. You have eternal life now while you live on this earth. And Heaven is your destination! You can have abundant life and eternal life here with Heaven waiting for you.
Abundant living grows in church participation. Church participation is more than just attending. God doesn’t need part time Christians. Church participation means faithful service to the church. It means fellowship. It means being involved in the programs of the church. Many people will say they belong to such-and-such church, even though they don’t go to church in years.
When you are full of God and the things of God, you have a new walk, you have a new talk, you act different, you live a different life, you think differently. Look back ten years ago. Where were you? If you still live in the same way of living, you better change. It is not good for you, and it is not good for others and for the church.
Abundant living means living a life according to God’s Word. We can’t follow God unless we are going his way. You can’t follow someone who is going the opposite way of where you are going. It is not possible! We must be going in the same direction in order to follow someone. When we are going in the same direction, we are involved in the same things, and we see things in the same way.
It’s time for church people to quit walking with negative talks. It’s time for church people to focus on Christ Vision and Mission. It’s time for church people to move on with the risen Lord. God wants people to enjoy life. When we enjoy life with God, we live abundantly.
Jesus says, “I am the gate, I am the good shepherd, I come that you may have life and have it abundantly.” Shalom and Amen!
Scripture: John 10:1-10