Sermon Text: Romans 13:9-14
Last week I challenged you all to think about the question: Does It Really Make a Difference Who Jesus Is? I believe we all agreed that it makes all the difference in the world.
And so today, I want to challenge you to go a step further ... begin “Putting Him On!”
A press conference was held to advertise a large convention of barber and beauty shop suppliers that was about to take place in Atlantic City. A disgustingly unkempt man was introduced as the most messed-up specimen of human nature that could be found. The man was dirty from head to foot. His clothes were nothing but rags and he smelled of alcohol and the filth of the alley in which he was found. The convention’s publicity agent announced plans to transform the man from the worst looking derelict to the finest looking gentleman in the city.
A team of barbers and beauticians went to work on the man. They bathed, shaved and shampooed the guy. They cut and styled his hair. They massaged and manicured him, cologned and perfumed him, dressed him in a designer suite and Italian loafers.
During each step of this transformation, which took several days, photographs were taken and printed in the newspapers. Everyone who followed the scenario was amazed at the truly remarkable change that had taken place in the man’s appearance. One company personnel executive was so impressed he offered the man a job. The new employee was instructed to report for work the next morning at nine o’clock.
Well, the next morning he didn’t appear at nine. In fact, he didn’t show up at all. So the personnel officer went looking for him and found him sprawled out, drunk and dirty back in the alley where he had been originally found. He had sold the Italian loafers and bought a bottle of booze.
Those barbers and beauticians had managed a miraculous transformation of the man’s outward appearance ... however, there had been no inward change – no transformation of character. He was still the same man.
Jesus said, “By their fruit you shall know them” (Matthew 7:16).
Has Jesus changed YOU?...Read full sermon here (PDF)