Zealous for Good Works

Mike Connell

Page 2 of 10
Now we go down here, we go into Chapter 2, Verse 14. Now He gave himself for us that He might redeem us from every inequity and purify for himself His own peculiar people or special people, zealous for good works. He gave Himself for us. He loved us. He gave Himself for us for a purpose, so in these verses here we see that Jesus gave Himself or He gave His whole life for something. Now you've got to ask yourself, what did He give His life for? Was it to just do something in the Heavens? No, I think more than that.

He gave Himself for us that He might redeem for Himself, so God, Jesus got something in this that He gets or He's looking for and it says that He might redeem us; in other words He gave Himself to totally pay a ransom price that something could be established and happen as a result of that, so this is what Jesus is looking for. He's looking for a special, unusual people. The word special (or particular) literally means to be distinct, unique or beyond usual, so what the Bible is saying here is Jesus redeemed you so you would be special, unique, quite different and unusual compared to everyone else in the community.

What makes you unusual and different is this; that you are - look at this - purified for Himself, His own special people, zealous for good works, passionate to do something and we're going to identify exactly what it is, the things that God wants us to do. Today I want to remove some of the difficulty from it by showing you it's not all spiritual stuff, and I want you to get very clearly two frameworks of what God is looking for you to do. Then we'll begin to unravel it and show you. Ultimately then it's up to each one of us. Notice what it says here in Chapter 3, Verse 8. This is a faithful saying and I want to affirm constantly, in other words I want you to constantly be reminded that those who have believed in God - that's us - be careful to maintain good works. Be careful to do it.

So He said this is God's purpose, is that people who'll be filled with good works - whatever that means - and He says, twice now He says in Verse 8, He says I want you who have believed in God be careful that you maintain good works. In other words be careful that there's fruit in your life for your Christian life and it shows up in what you're doing. Notice again in Verse 14 He says the same thing; let our people also learn to maintain good works, not only to meet needs or problems or issues that people have, but so you may not be unfruitful. We'll come back to that right at the very end.

So what God is saying here is that it's His purpose that we be productive, unique, unusual, that we stand out because of all people in the world, we are interested in the cause of the poor and the needy. We're interested in the cause of justice. We're interested in the cause of the community. We are not about having meetings to get blessed. We are about making a difference in the community and so He said let your light shine before men so that they see your good works. If you have a look through history the people who started the schools, the people who started the hospitals, the people who did good works; it came out of revivals. It came out of the life of God overflowing to meet the needs of the poor, the oppressed and those who had been treated unjustly.

This is the foundation of our faith, and over the next few sessions we're going to explore that a little more clearly, what that means to you as an individual. Now, there are three reasons why it's important to maintain good works, three reasons. I want to give them to you, so helpful to have these and then we're going to look into two foundations. Number one, here's the first reason. The first reason it's important for you to be productive or have good works operating in your life or to be doing something that's of benefit to others. We just put it like that; doing something that benefits others. Number one, divine design. You're designed for it. You'll never be happy in your life unless you do.