Are You Breathing? – a guest sermon by Zack Craft

Sunday, August 23rd, 2015 – 13th Sunday after Pentecost
Gower Christian Church, Gower, MO
Scripture: James 2:14-26
Hymns: “Stand Up, Stand Up for Jesus”, “Rejoice, Ye Pure in Heart”, “Blest Be the Tie That Binds”, “Nearer, My God, to Thee”, “Break Thou the Bread of Life”, “Tell Me the Old, Old Story”

Are You Breathing?
Guest Preacher: Zack Craft

Obviously I’m up here in a rosary and jeans,
But I’m a youth leader and speak mostly to teens.
But listen to this and I’ll take you out of you normal Sunday routine.

This will be new for most of you, a delivery you may have never heard.
All I ask is you give me a few minutes and listen to these words.

These words didn’t come from me,
God gave them to me so we can open our eyes and see.

James chapter two says faith without works is dead.
That’s the phrase you’ll need to remember for what lies ahead

About 76 percent of our country claim to be Christian
So about 3 in 4 people say they have Jesus living in them.

If that’s the case then answer this;
Why do our morals continue to diminish?

As Christians we are supposed to live in a way that sets a good example.
But it seems like the number of Christians actually doing that, isn’t so ample.

I’m not here to judge, I have my flaws too.
I’m here to inspire you. To empower you.

76 is a pretty high percentage of self-proclaimed Christians
But there is another percentage I should probably mention.

About 15% of people don’t believe in Jesus.
That means almost 47million people don’t realize how he’s freed us.

How on the day of crucifixion he bled from seven places.
That through a combination of them all, our sin erases.

The blood from his head erases the bad thoughts and the wrong things you say.
While the blood from his side, erases the rotten feelings you get in your guts some days.

The blood from his back, erases the times you’ve turned away from him
The blood from his hands erases the things you’ve touched that have caused you to sin.

Six and seven are the holes in his feet.
Those erase the times you’ve walked down the wrong street.

Those seven spots are the greatest gift we could ever receive.
Why can’t we take some time to help others believe?

We live in a society that is not an American Dream, it more of an American scheme.
Where we scorn the Tim Tebows but celebrate the Charlie Sheens.

60 million. That’s the number of babies abortion has killed.
But this society is more likely to protest when a lion’s blood is spilled.

You can say “I’m gonna do that” or “I’m gonna do this”
But the opportunity comes and your words disappear into the abyss.

In Genesis chapter 22
We as humans see a whole new breakthrough.

Abraham was ordered to kill his own son.
If you look at your family and your life,
What would you have done?

We can live in this town and sit in this church,
But are we helping lost people in their daily search?

We look at someone and judge them by the way they look, by the way they dress
Instead we need to look at them and make sure they know they’re blessed.

We have the chance to tell them about an almighty God,
We can tell them not to feel down or upset because just like them, we too are flawed.

Instead we wanna argue about what’s right and what’s fair.
And we wanna know why getting new members is becoming so rare.

Are tattoos wrong?
Really bro who cares?!
Get out of your church pews and chairs.

There’s a dying world right outside these stain glassed windows,
Depressed people, poor people, addicts and widows.
But we’d rather sit on the couch and watch Veggie Tales with our kiddos.
While Christians overseas are getting their heads lopped off and placed on videos.

Unlike Muhammad Jesus didn’t stay in the grave.
Three days later he came rushing back to life
And he’s coming back one day
And then they’ll see Jesus is the only way!

That’s why it on us to get up and go
And tell the world Jesus is coming back and the trumpet will blow!!

And ISIS can’t behead the one who has crown on his head and has hole in his feet
I pray to God I’m there the day Jihadist and Jesus meet and they fall those feet!!
Because Jesus Chris is KING!!

And all the Muslim chants and mosque around the world can’t drown out the sound of angels as they sing holy holy holy is the LORD God almighty
Because God is mighty and ISIS is NOT!!
And they think when they kill us our souls die and our bodies rot
My faith is not built on your weak sand, it stands on a rock.
And when you kill us we live in mansion in Heaven that oil money never bought.
Golden roads and diamond lots, we do not die with your cowardly shots.

Isis is rodents that follows a book that teaches them to kill
They’re promised virgins in heaven through Allah’s will.
But there will be no virgins or paradise awaiting them
There will be hell for those wicked men.

But Jesus died for them too.
And he loves them as much as he loves me and loves you.

We had the chance to go to LA to speak to others about Christ,
To tell the world about the ultimate price.

Bubba sat there on that train, speaking to a woman he’d never met.
He saw a child of God while others saw a threat.

She may be what people call crazy,
But he stood up when others were lazy!

Church doesn’t make you a good person.
You aren’t better than others because you listen to this or any other sermon.

Jesus never said I’ll make you sinless.
He said I’ll grant you life
And I will help you through this.

They say two in three kids will leave the church.
Two in three kids in a brand new search.

Had they been looking for judges they’d still be around.
Because the pews seem to be filled with that kind of crowd.

Know it all men and gossiping girls
Jesus said “be love to the rest of the world.”
People who claim Christ but failed to live it.
People who wanted love but failed to give it.

People the youth refuse to follow.
Youth who leave because they feel the church is hollow.

We’re desperate for love and we’re looking for life
So stop ruining the church and start proclaiming Christ.

Take it from a kid who grew up in the pews.
A kid from a generation forced to choose.

Leave the church because of fake people in it?
Or stay for Christ who showed love-
And meant it?

The two in three who leave are part of the problem too
Because instead of being the solution,
Quitting is what they do.

So I’ll be the one in three who stays under the steeple.
Cuz I’d rather stay for Jesus Christ
Instead of leave because of people.

Some come here and make the church toxic.
They talk behind others backs and spreading gossip

When will you stop judging by what you hear and don’t see?
And start living your life the way Jesus meant it to be.

You want things to be different?
Then start spreading God’s words and stop being belligerent.

Thinking people won’t know from where it came
But you sit back and act insane.

If you want things to change
Then do something different
Do something strange.

We have the chance to tell our kids and youth,
About Jesus Christ, the life He lived
and His holy truth!

Tell them about the way he hung with drunks and sinners.
He’d rather hang with the “losers of society”
Not the ones, we think, as winners.

We serve a God who turned a killer into an apostle.
So the last thing you’ll hear me udder is impossible

We can come here every Sunday but that won’t matter
But what happens when you leave here and you don’t share our chatter?

We must go out. Turn our words into action.
How would the world feel if we went out and didn’t judge
What would be their reaction?

We come together to praise God for what He’s done.
But we leave here and rarely share our stories with anyone.

We can sit at home and say we’re going to do something about it.
But what really happens when we go out and share the Holy Spirit?

You tell people what is right and what is wrong
Then we go out and don’t live to our song.

Practice what you preach, my mom always said.
We must go out,
The Word of God is what we need to spread.

I’m no better than you.
I’m not a saint. I’m not a role model.
I’m just a sinner saved by grace.
Running full throttle.
Telling the world to put down the bottle and drink the living water instead.

Who am I? I’m just a nobody.
Just trying to grow the church and Christ’s body.

We can’t let lies continue to destroy our kids
Jesus paid the ultimate bid.

If people continue to push my rep up,
I pray they see Jesus and not this piece of trash he swept up.

DC Talk once said the greatest cause of atheism is Christians.
We acknowledge Jesus with our lips and deny him by our lifestyle.
It seems many Christians are in denial.

We can’t continue a life like that.
We have to go out and stop acting like Christian brats.

Believing is nothing, if nothing is done.
In getting to Heaven, you follow the Son.

Satan knows Jesus, believes in him too.
So what’s the difference, between Satan and You?

Are you breathing or are you dead?
Have you drank the wine and eaten the bread?

What is faith if you have no deeds?
Your love and action is what this world needs.

So again, you can sit here and listen.
But go out do something,
Make someone’s face glisten!!

Stand up for what’s right but don’t bow down,
To what the world says you should do and listen to some clown.

We have the ability to live like Christ,
To bring others to heaven and eternal life.

Jesus said to go and make disciples of all nations
To make love and give a life for all of God’s creation.

Stand up for what you believe
Take a stand and do what God has planned for you to achieve.

So I say this in closing.
Stand up and do something
Stop being a Christian who is only posing.

Because faith without works is dead.
Live the life Jesus gave to you when he took that crown on his head.

Go and do a good deed, even if it’s just today.
That deed leads to another and another and another.
But remember to live for Christ and no other!!

There was a bridge out on the east coast. In the middle of the night this bridge collapsed after it was struck by a barge. Now this bridge is on a busy road but no one knew it had collapsed. Car after car. Person after person fell to their death into the river. One man, seeing this, took two flash lights and went into the middle of the road and began swinging them like this. But people drove around him thinking he was crazy. Again, those people fell to their death. Be that man.

So at every place, on every stage, shout one name. Proclaim one name. Go out and beg sinners to repent and believe in one name. Jesus Christ!! Why?! Because it’s Jesus Jesus Jesus til the day I die.



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