Grand Parkway Baptist Church

Grand Parkway Baptist Church

Sermons from the pulpit of Grand Parkway Baptist Church in Richmond, Texas. Listen to hear God's Word spoken clearly and directly.
Grand Parkway Baptist Church


Sermons from the pulpit of Grand Parkway Baptist Church in Richmond, Texas. Listen to hear God's Word spoken clearly and directly.


The Glory Prayer of Jesus, Part 2

Aug 13, 2019 2908


John 17:1-5
The Glory Prayer of Jesus, Part 2

1. Election

2. Eternal Life, v. 3

a) eternal- means without beginning and end, that which always has been and always will be.  

b) life (zoe)- life real and genuine, a life active and vigorous, devoted to God, blessed, in the portion even in this world of those who put their trust in Christ, but after the resurrection to be consummated by new accessions (among them a more perfect body), and to last for ever.

  Two things happen when we fail to understand what Bible means by “eternal life”…
Heaven loses it’s glory
and right now is drained of its possibilities

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.  He was in the beginning with God.  All things were made though him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men.”
-John 1:1-4

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” -John 10:10

a) only in God is this life available
b) we cannot know God in any way we choose

Doctrine of man…

1) purpose
2) problem
3) person

3. Example, v. 4

4. Exchange, v. 5

a) Jesus’ first coming- redemption…in secret, in grace and with the offer of salvation
b) Jesus’ second coming- judgement…in public, in judgment, no salvation available. 

“Then I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse! The one sitting on it is called Faithful and True, and in righteousness he judges and makes war. His eyes are like a flame of fire, and on his head are many diadems, and he has a name written that no one knows but himself. He is clothed in a robe dipped in[b] blood, and the name by which he is called is The Word of God. And the armies of heaven, arrayed in fine linen, white and pure, were following him on white horses. From his mouth comes a sharp sword with which to strike down the nations, and he will rule them with a rod of iron. He will tread the winepress of the fury of the wrath of God the Almighty. On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of kings and Lord of lords.”
-Revelation 19:11-16

Questions for reflection…

How often do you feel there is something more, bigger and better in life and you are missing out on it?
Is there anything that God has given you to do that you have yet to finish?  
What did you hear today that you will still be thinking about on Tuesday?
What is one prayer you will pray as a result of what you heard today?

The Glory Prayer of Jesus, Pt. 1

Aug 4, 2019 2258


John 17:1-5

1. Election 

A. Definition

“Election is an act of God before creation in which he chooses some people to be saved, not on account of any foreseen merit in them, but only because of his sovereign good pleasure.” -Wayne Grudem

B. Biblical examples

“And when the Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of the Lord, and as many as were appointed to eternal life believed.”   -Acts 13:48

"And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those whom he predestined he also called, and those whom he called he also justified, and those whom he justified he also glorified.”
- Romans 8:28-30

"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love  he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved.”      
-Ephesians 1:3-6

C. Mental orientation

How should we think about the doctrine of election?

a) As a reminder of God’s relentless commitment to His people

“What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?  He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God's elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written,“For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
-Romans 8:31-39

b) As a comfort in evangelism

“And the Lord said to Paul one night in a vision, “Do not be afraid, but go on speaking and do not be silent, for I am with you, and no one will attack you to harm you, for I have many in this city who are my people.” And he stayed a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.”
-Acts 18:9-11

c) As a foundation for formative worship

d) As a deterrent to pride

An End To Idolatry

Jul 29, 2019 5068


1 John 2:15-17

What do you love?

-Jn. 3:16

-Mt. 6:24

If you love the world…

1. You are not saved, no born again
-2 Tim. 3:1-5

What can world lovers do?
Pour over the Word of God
-1 Pt. 1:23
Cry out to Jesus to open your eyes
-Mt. 11:27
Plead he takes out of you a stone heart
-Eze. 36:26
Forsake sins and don’t give up until saved
-Jer. 29:13

2. You are reborn, but your love has grown cold
-Mt. 12:20

“There is the lust of the gutter and the lust of the gourmet. There is the lust for hard rock and the lust for high Rachmaninoff. There is the lust of Penthouse and the lust of Picasso.” -John Piper

-1 Cor. 4:7
-Deut. 8:18

Follow the Signs

What should I desire?

Am I a world lover?

“One way we can begin to do that is by asking ourselves, “What are the novels I’m reading?” “What are the movies I’m watching?” “What are the things that preoccupy me?” “What are the things that I talk about?” “Am I proud of my favorite professional, college, or high school team and willing to talk about and defend that team, and yet am ashamed of the gospel of Christ?” Something is fundamentally wrong if we won’t talk to people about Jesus with any kind of passion and enthusiasm like we talk about a sports team or a movie or a TV program. Those things can become idolatrous. The passions we invest in other things should be directed to Jesus.” -Randy Alcorn


-Think of a “sign” you regularly encounter

-Repent of your neglect of God

-Beg Him for a softer heart

The What, Why, and How of Worship

Jul 22, 2019 2416


The What, Why, and How of Worship

Definition of Worship:  
“To be fully captivated such that every effort is for God in order to serve God.”

1. Every Effort includes:
a. Groaning - Psalm 13
b. Confession - Psalm 51
c. Desire for God - Psalm 63

2. Why Worship
Generational Knowledge - Joshua 22:25-27
Obedience equals deliverance - 2 Kings 17:35-39

3. How to Worship 
-1 Chronicles 16:12-26
a. Recognizing His wonders - v 12 & 26
b. Recalling His promises - v 15-18
c. Making known His salvation - v 23 & 24

Suggestions on How to Worship
a. Names of God
b. Adoration
c. Sing
d. Count your blessings
e. Pray
f. Giving

Romans 12:1-2

What is your worship preparation? 
What are you doing with the spiritual light and awareness God has given you?

Behavior Always Follows Belief- Paul's Sonship Mindset

Jul 15, 2019 2257


Galatians 4:4-7

1. Paul believed he was an adopted son of God, and that changed everything, v. 4-5

2. Paul believed he had full and complete access to God, v. 6

3. Paul no longer identified with his past, v. 7

The Simple God Who Lets You Suffer

Jul 7, 2019 2863


John 16:25-33

1. There is a hiddenness to God, v. 25

This is seen in three areas: teaching, healing and identity

a) His teaching
-Matthew 13:10-13
-Matthew 13:34-35

b) His healing
-Mark 5:41-43

c) His identity
- Matthew 16: 13-20

2. God is accessible, v. 26-27

Two consequences of not believing this truth:
1) Never know how much God loves you
2) Never experience the priesthood of all Believers

a) Priesthood of the Believer leads to a highly individualistic, lonely, isolated, private seeker of truth who practices subjective willingness and makes their mind up in isolation.  In this model, every man’s hat is his church.

“The common error that the phrase ‘priesthood of believers’ is synonymous with ‘private judgment’ is most unfortunate and is certainly a misrepresentation. … Of course, the reformers emphasized ‘private judgment,’ but it was always ‘informed’ judgment, and it was always controlled, checked, and corroborated by the testimony of the congregation. Indeed, Calvin himself fully realized that uncontrolled private judgment means subjectivism, eccentricity, anarchy, and chaos.” -Cyril Eastwood

b) Priesthood of all Believers leads to a band of faithful believers united in a common confession as a local, visible church body.  This captures the Christian’s freedom to stand in a direct relationship to God without a human mediator as well as the Christian’s evangelical responsibility to come before God on behalf of other Believers and the world. The universal priesthood is not about religious individualism but its exact opposite, the reality of the congregation as a community.

“All believers … should seek to bring others into the church, and should strive to lead the wanderers back to the road, should stretch forth a hand to the fallen and should win over the outsiders.” -John Calvin 

- 1 Peter 2:9-10

3. Suffering is part of believing, v. 29-33

For mental consideration…

1. Would you say your life choices reflect a desire for relief or the Truth?
2. Who is your “Peter, James and John?”
3. How are you exercising your priesthood these days?
4. Is it possible for you to think of suffering as formative?  Said differently, as preparation instead of punishment? 
5. Do you find it hard to reconcile Christians suffering and God winning? 

What God Will Not Save You From

Jul 1, 2019 2763


John 16:16-24

1. Waiting is a part of the human experience
-John 7:33; 13:33

Two questions to ask ourselves while we are waiting…
a) What is God doing in me?
b) What is God doing through me? 

2. Jesus knew what was coming
-John 10:17-18

3. The disciples did not

4. Because of this we will experience the full range of human emotions

Here are some good questions to ask yourself…
What do you fear is happening?
What do you fear is going to happen?
What do you fear is never going to happen?

Brain candy…
Is there anything in your life to which God is saying “in a little while?"
If you realized that God already knows the questions you want to ask, what would that free you up to ask God?
Do you understand what God believes about humanity? 
What does your life feel like these days? 

Rosaria Butterfield - Grand Parkway Baptist Church - Session 2

Jun 27, 2019 3182


Rosaria Butterfield at Grand Parkway Baptist Church, June 15, 2019

Rosaria Butterfield - Grand Parkway Baptist Church - Session 1

Jun 27, 2019 3708


Rosaria Butterfield at Grand Parkway Baptist Church, June 14, 2019

Laying Fear At The Altar

Jun 24, 2019 2544


Isaiah 41:1-10
1. The importance of Silence v. 1
2. Comfort in Victory v. 2-3
-Ephesians 5:25-33
3. God’s Reputation v3-4
-Psalm 19:9-14
4. God is crazy about you v. 8
5.The importance of the reminder v. 9
6. The command with a promise v. 10 

Who Does What and Why It Matters

Jun 17, 2019 2674


John 16:5-15

1. God places great value on the human body
-1 Corinthians 6:13-20

2. The Holy Spirit is at work in the world

Specifically to convict the world of three things:

1)  SIN- “concerning sin, because they do not believe in me” 
-John 3:18
-John 8:24

2)  RIGHTEOUSNESS- “because I go to the Father”   
- Galatians 2:21

3)  JUDGMENT- “because the ruler of this world has judged.” 

a. It is important that we think rightly about God, v. 29
b. God is patient, v. 30
c. Everyone from everywhere is commanded to repent, v. 30
d. Judgement day has been fixed by God, v. 31
e. We will all be judged by a righteous standard (Jesus), v. 31
f. The resurrection gives us assurance as to the reality of judgement, v. 31


Jun 10, 2019 1238


Hebrews 10:19-39

Understanding Why People Hate You

Jun 3, 2019 3379


John 15:18-16:4

1. Being chosen changes everything, v. 18-21
-World refers to the whole mass of humanity alienated from God, and therefore, hostile to the cause of Christ.

2. Opposition is the outworking of guilt, v. 22-25

Two things we need to see here:
1) The words and works of Jesus establish a standard of universal guilt for all of humanity. 
2) This is also the origin of objective truth for Christians.

3. We need both the internal & external witness, v. 26-27
a) internal witness- Holy Spirit
b) external witness- Christians 
-To bear witness simply means “to affirm that one has seen, heard or experienced something.” 

4. Jesus has a goal, v. 16:1-4
-1 John 2:19

Five theses on eternal security:

a. We are justified by grace alone through faith alone apart from any works. 
-Ephesians 2:8-9                
-Romans 3:28

b. Those who are justified will certainly be glorified.                                                                -Romans 8:30
c. No one will be glorified/finally saved who does not continue in faith.    
- I Corinthians 15:1-2
- Colossians 1:21-23

d. God Himself will keep His children from finally falling away. 
-Philippians 1:6
-1 Corinthians 1:8-9

e. God keeps His children by means of His children. 
-Hebrews 3:13-14
-James 5:19-20

Food for thought…
When the world hates you do you feel affirmed or defeated?  Why? 
What effects of guilt do you see at work in the world today? 
How does understanding the internal witness of the Holy Spirit inform your witness?
Do you know anybody who is drifting away that God is calling you to speak to in love? 
What do you think was God’s goal for you hearing this message today?

How God Uses Memorials

May 26, 2019 2573


Joshua 4:1-24

1. We need something to come back to, v. 1-7
- Deuteronomy 6:10-12

2. God must lead and we must follow, v.8-9
- Joshua 3:1-4

3. To be a person of authority you must be under authority, v. 10-14

4. It won’t always be what it once was, v. 19
- Numbers 14:34

5. God always acts with a purpose, v. 20-24

Questions for reflection…

In what context are you most likely to forget God:  hardship or prosperity?
Can you tell when God is leading you? 
Who or what authority do you submit to?
What would people come to believe about God from watching your life?
How do you demonstrate reverence for God? 

What Christians Tend To Forget

May 20, 2019 2798


John 15:1-11

1. The nature of the Father’s work, v. 1-2

A vinedresser is an agriculturalist involved in the daily pruning and cultivation of grapevines. As with any agricultural professional, vinedressers work nearly year-round to help ensure the vineyard has a successful crop.  Pruning is one of the preeminent tasks of a vinedresser. These pruning techniques take into consideration the shape and consistency of the vine. Pruning is an essential task as it removes dead, diseased or stunted fruits to make room for new growth, ultimately leading to a healthy and productive vine. The pruning process begins very shortly after planting, usually within a few weeks. Keeping pests away from burgeoning vines is vital to maintaining the vineyard and ultimately the wine production. Vinedressers must also closely monitor vineyards to ensure each is receiving the correct amount of water and irrigation during the growing season. Failure by the vinedresser to provide adequate water to vines could lead to sunburn, immature vines and pest problems.

2. That austerity is not the norm, v. 3

-John 13:10

3. Union makes it all possible, v. 4-10

Union means learning to believe and enjoy God’s relentless commitment to you, His holy capacity towards you and His sheer delight in you. 

- Matthew 11:28-30

“There is no joy in this world like union with Christ. The more we can feel it, the happier we are.” -Charles Spurgeon

“Nothing cuts the nerve of the desire to pursue holiness as much as a sense of guilt. On the contrary, nothing so motivates us to deal with sin in our lives as does the understanding and application of the two truths that our sins are forgiven and the dominion of sin is broken because of our union with Christ.”  -Jerry Bridges

4. That joy is the goal, v. 11

- Hebrews 12:1-2

- James 1:2-4

- Matthew 13:44

Questions for digestive thinking...

How does understanding what God does (the vinedresser) inform what you do? 

What stirs in you when you think of yourself as completely clean before God? 

What has joy caused you to do lately that you normally wouldn’t do?

What are you guilty of not enjoying enough? 

If you were having lunch with Jesus after this service what part of the sermon do you think he would want to discuss with you? 

The Beautiful Standard

May 13, 2019 2233


John 14:15-31

1. The standard is established, v. 15-17

you love me…you keep my commandments…you receive the Holy Spirit 

-Romans 8:1-9

2. The plan is revealed, v. 18-21

3. The distinction is established, v. 22-24

4. The function is revealed, v. 25-26

Primary function of the Holy Spirit is two-fold:

a) teach

b) remind

5. The peace is given, v. 27-31

Questions for reflection…

1. How often do you think about God living inside of you? 

2. If you could ask Jesus to explain any one thing going on in your life right now what would it be?

3. Are you experiencing this peace that Jesus talks about? 

4. How does the world know that you love God? 

Righteous Influence

May 5, 2019 2348


Righteous Influence

Paraphrase of Jonathan Edwards:

The spirit that is at work in a people is plainly observed so as to convince others that Christ is the son of God, died to save sinners, we are in great need of Him, and our affections for Him and God increases.

-Genesis 4:2-5

True righteousness - aligns with God in our worship, in our life, and in our influence.  

-Colossians 4:7-8

-John 12:9-11

God uses everyone for influence and its the “little known” to the “no named” that He most often uses to be influential.

-1 Corinthians 15:58

4 characteristics of righteous influence

1. Willingness to give everything

2. Little regard for self, but utmost for God

3. Speaks and Acts Differently

4. Consistency

“Through the leading and the power of the Holy Spirit, the Christian is involved in a daily life and habit that cannot be explained.”  A.W. Tozer

3 questions to consider:

What influence is your life having?

Who are you influencing the most?

What informs your influence? (world, peer pressure, self, or God)

What Makes It All Better

Apr 29, 2019 2974


John 13:36-14:14

1. A promise, v. 36-38

-Psalm 103:9-14

He promises that He is with us in our darkest times. Psalm 23:4

He promises to give us wisdom if we ask. James 1:5

He promises that in all things He is at work. Romans 8:28

He promises to provide a way out of temptation. I Corinthians 10:13 

He promises that as Christians we are forgiven forever. Hebrews 10:8-14

He promises that our salvation is secure, no matter what. John 10:28-29

He promises that He is not put off by our weaknesses. 2 Cor. 12:8-10

He promises to never leave us nor forsake us. Hebrews 13:5

He promises that this was His idea. Philippians 1:6

He promises to come back. John 14:3

Important to remember this…

God makes two types of promises: 

1) unconditional promises – this is a promise void of conditions. Nothing has to happen for this to be true, it depends on nothing but the nature of the person making the promise. 

2) conditional promises –this promise is subject to certain qualifications or requirements. 

2. A peace, v. 1

This peace is the by-product of believing in two people who are one...

believe in God- this is a statement about God

believe also in me- this is a statement about you.  

Four things we are saying about ourselves when we say we believe in Jesus…

1)   I am sinful and separated from God- Jesus is necessary

2)   I am incapable of making myself right with God- Jesus is needed

3)   I am in need of Someone to solve this problem- Jesus is sufficient

4)   I am loved by God- Jesus is the demonstration of the Father’s love

3. A place, v. 2-3

Steps in a Jewish Wedding

1) Marriage covenant- the Father pays for the bride and establishes the marriage covenant

2) Bridal chamber prepared- the son returns to his father’s house and prepares the bridal chamber

3) Bride is fetched- at a time determined by the father, the groom fetches the bride to bring her to his father’s house.  Although the bride is expecting the groom to come to her, she does not know the time of his arrival. Because of this his arrival is preceded by a shout, which warns the bride to be prepared for his coming. 

4) Bride is cleansed- the bride undergoes ritual cleansing prior to the wedding ceremony.

5) Wedding ceremony- private wedding ceremony

6) Consummation- in the privacy of the bridal chamber the bride and groom consummate the marriage

7) Marriage Feast- celebratory marriage feast to which many are invited. 

4. A person, v. 4-11

a) the way- 

b) the truth- “…assuming that yo have heard about him and were taught in him, as the truth is in Jesus…” - Ephesians 4:21

c) the life-

-John 1:1-5

The word “zoe" refers to life real and genuine, a life active and vigorous, devoted to God, blessed, in the portion even in this world of those who put their trust in Christ, but after the resurrection to be consummated by new accessions (among them a more perfect body), and to last for ever.

5. A possibility, v. 12-14

Questions for reflection…

Which one of these fuels the way you relate to God?  The promises you make or the promises He has made? 

Today we heard how God deals compassionately with us because “He knows our frame.”  Do you “know the frame” of those you have authority over and how does this affect the way you deal with them?

Do you believe there is a place for you in heaven?

Should the reality of heaven influ

Seeing and Believing

Apr 22, 2019 2909


John 20:1-10

See this...

Jesus died

Two things you should know about sin:

a) sin is consistent

b) sin is consequential

Believe this…

1. God has a plan for the renewal of all things 

-Matthew 19:28

2. All of your sin was paid for on the cross

-Romans 4:25

“In the death of Jesus we see justification accomplished and in the resurrection of Jesus we see justification accepted.” -Robert Wauphop

3. There is life after death

-I Corinthians 15:12-24

-Matthew 27:51-53

4. You can experience this for yourself

 Believe in- “existence of”

 Believe on- “faith in” 

a) Jesus is the Christ- a question of integrity

b) the son of God- a question of authority

c) and that by believing you may have life in his name- a question of opportunity

Why Palm Sunday?

Apr 15, 2019 2800


Luke 19:28-48

1. Jesus is misunderstood, v. 28-40

a)  When you relate to God based on your expectation you create a standard by which God is now evaluated 
b)  We tend to evaluate God based on what is best for us
c)   Jesus knows and controls what is happening
-Luke 18:31-34
-Exodus 12:1-6
i..the day Jesus enters Jerusalem is lamb selection day
ii. the animal had to be without blemish or defect
iii. they had to keep the animal for five days to inspect it
iv. Jesus will be crucified as the Passover lambs are being sacrificed

2. Jesus is sad, v. 41-44

3. Jesus is angry, v. 45-48

The Sanctifying Power of Sexual Morality

Apr 9, 2019 2542


The Sanctifying Power of Sexual Morality

1 Thessalonians 4:1-8

I. Explanation of the text

II. Commands within the text

that you abstain from sexual immorality

that each one of you know how to control his own body in holiness and honor

that no one transgress and wrong his brother in this matter

III. Consequences for not holding to these commands

1. Immorality shrinks our pleasures, v. 1

"Sin acts as a powerful astringent upon the soul to shrink it down to the size of the individual." -Jonathan Edwards

2.  Immorality misrepresents Christianity, v. 4-5

3. Immorality requires God to be the avenger, v. 6

4. Immorality violates the environment of your calling, v. 7

5. Immorality disregards God, v. 8

IV. The Context of Morality

1. The will of God, v. 3 & 8

2. Your sanctification, v. 3

Sanctification is a progressive work of God and man that makes us more and more free from sin and more like Christ in our actual lives. -Wayne Grudem

Questions for reflection:

 How often do you think about holiness?

 What stirs in you when you hear of God as “an avenger?”

 If you took away the need to be constantly forgiven, what would you enjoy most about God? What would draw you to Him? 

 What will you most want to discuss as a result of this morning?

 Sanctification is a work of God and man.  In what ways are you cooperating with God in your sanctification? 

How You Relate to Jesus

Mar 31, 2019 2402


John 12:1-11

1. Lazarus- What does Jesus knows about you?

Here are some characteristics of a Lazarus...
Can’t tell you how to get it because he just experienced it 
His/her life is a threat to the religious subculture, v. 9-11
Forgot the score
Has a deep faith that they often cannot explain in ways that makes sense
People appreciate this person from a distance but seldom let them get close
It’s all going to be alright in the end
Lingers long at dinner

2. Martha- What does Jesus need from you? 

 Here are some characteristics of a Martha...
Has one tool, one response and one way of doing things
Typically feels under-appreciated
Busy but rarely joyful
Obsesses over possible outcomes
Cannot score enough points to feel secure enough to sit down on the inside
Can give lip service to the idea of change but rarely changes
Service is like an armor which protects them from the vulnerability of being known 
Cleans up after dinner

3. Mary- What does Jesus want from you?  

“After a certain amount of immersion in public life, I begin to burn out.  And I have noticed that I burn out inwardly long before I do outwardly.  Hence, I must be careful not to become a fanatic bundle of hollow energy, busy among people but devoid of life.  I must learn when to retreat, like Jesus, and experience the recreating power of God.  We are told that Peter tarried in Joppa for many days with one Simon, a tanner.  And along our journey we need to discover numerous tarrying places where we can receive heavenly manna.”
-Richard Foster, The Freedom of Simplicity

 Here are some characteristics of a Mary…
Lives with a sense of devotion to who God is and what He is doing
Doesn’t just look to understand but be involved
Engages in behaviors that do not make sense in the moment but makes a big difference in hindsight
They are often misunderstood, seen as different and live with a low grade sense of loneliness and aloneness 
Something about this person that people want to be around
Slow, often seen as a lack of planning skills but in reality this person is not done with the moment when everyone else is done
Doesn’t even know there is a game going on much less the score
Leaves the dinner without anybody noticing

4. Judas- What do you want from Jesus? 

 Here are some characteristics of a Judas...
Has a set of expectations which are to be met and if not then he has another plan.
Keeps the score
Faith is in himself and his plan
Can be a pathological liar who simply sees lying as a means to an end
Motivated by personal gain, “what’s in it for me?”
Evaluates everything but rarely really experiences anything
Life is transactional and never relational 
Pitches a fit over how much the dinner costs

Questions for reflection…

What do you do to relax in God’s presence?
Is there anything that you wish you could quit doing but have yet to figure out how?
Where are your tarrying places?
What are some of the bigger agendas in your life these days and how many of them are necessary?
If you wrote down a one sentence summary of what you take away from this morning, what would that sentence be?

The Prideful Path and The Humble Path

Mar 25, 2019 2816


Daniel 4

What are the two options we have when we encounter God’s majesty? 
1. Prideful Path 
A. Prosperity (Daniel 4:4)
B. Poor Counsel (Daniel 4:5-8)
C. Passing Time (Daniel 4:24-27, 29-30)

2. Humble Path (Daniel 4:34-37)

The Inescapable Enoughness of Jesus

Mar 18, 2019 2574


John 11:45-57

1. Jesus is inescapable, v. 45-48

2. Political solutions without spiritual renewal never changes a nation, v. 49-50

In the 2018 election cycle alone…

Democratic party- $954,729,181

Republican party- $993,963,461

Democratic national Committee- $176,782,851

Republican national Committee- $324,836,805

Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee- $296,422,428

Republican Congressional Campaign Committee- $205,755,914

Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee- $148,698,958

National Republican Senatorial Committee- $151,570,520

3. In the big picture, God uses little people, v. 49-53

4. The Cross is God’s will not man’s, v. 54

-Acts 4:23-31

5. Jesus is enough, v. 55-57

-Romans 9:16

Questions for discussion…

In what ways is Jesus threatening you these days and what is He threatening? 

If you had control over all the money we spend on politics how would you spend it?

Who is God using to teach you things about yourself these days? 

How would your life change if you believed that God was in charge of the times and the timing of your life?

How do you see God coming to you in the normalcy of your life? 

What God Does and Why He Does It

Mar 11, 2019 2070


John 11:1-44

Observations for the text: 

Jesus’ lack of action was anything but a lack of love.

The more we pray, listen, observe and are obedient, the less we will miss it.

In the middle of something, all we see is that "Something", not comprehending

What God Does

1. Heals

2. Does not heal

3. Raises from the dead

Why God Does It

1. Because He loves

2. To communicate

3. He cares

4. To show His glory

Jesus Being God Is The Gospel

Mar 4, 2019 2312


John 10:22-42

“At its briefest, the gospel is a discourse about Christ, that he is the Son of God and became man for us, that he died and was raised, and that he has been established as Lord over all things.”  

- Martin Luther 

“Here’s the gospel in a phrase. Because Christ died for us, those who trust in him may know that their guilt has been pardoned once and for all. What will we have to say before the bar of God’s judgment? Only one thing. Christ died in my place. That’s the gospel.”  

- Alister Begg 

“but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.” 

 - John 20:31

I. The Confrontation vv 24-30

1. He is the Son of God   John 5:17-18

2. God has sent Him  John 7:28-29

3. He is God  John 8:19, 58 

“John says in the first chapter: we beheld His glory, and it was the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.  He was he very essence of God, the writers of the epistles picked this up.  The writer of Hebrews says He’s the exact representation of God, the express image of God.  The apostle Paul says all the fullness of deity dwells in Him.  John says if you deny His deity and His humanity, you’re cursed.  This is Christianity.  He is introduced by Matthew, as Emmanuel, God with us.  He’s introduced by Mark as God the Son.  He’s introduced by Luke as the Holy One who is born as a child.  This is the heart of the Christian gospel.  He is not a noble teacher only.  He is not a religious leader only.  He is not a highly moral man.  He’s not someone with unusual wisdom alone, although all of those things are true.  He is God, and anything less than that is blasphemy against Him, against Him.” 

- John MacArthur 

- Philippians 2:12-13 

II. The Response  V31

1. By not denying to be God, Jesus is telling the Jews that He is God.  

2. Jesus meets an angry rock-holding crowd with the intent of stoning Him, right where they are 

3. Jesus loves second chances 

Provision and Promise

Feb 25, 2019 1090


Mark 14:22-25

a) rescue from Egypt

b) freedom from slavery

c) redemption by God’s divine power

d) renewed relationship with God

1. Provision, v. 22-23

2. Promise, v. 24-25

Questions The Bible Asks Us

Feb 18, 2019 2608


John 10:1-21

1. How did God design this relationship to be?, v. 3-6

-Psalm 32:8-9

2. Do you recognize God’s voice?

The primary way that God speaks to us is by his Son, through His Spirit in the Bible. 

-Hebrews 1:1-2

-Hebrews 3:7-9

a) Does this line up with the clear teaching of the Bible?

b) Does this in any way grieve the Holy Spirit?

c) Is this in keeping with the character and nature of Jesus?

3. What experiences characterize the Christianity? v. 9

Mainly three: 

a) saved

b) freedom

c) provision

-Psalm 23:1-3

4. Who is the thief?, v. 10

5. Would you fear death if you knew you would live again? v. 17-18

Thinking Rightly About God

Feb 10, 2019 2362


John 10:1-21

1. Is Jesus really the only way to God? v. 1-2, 7-9

Religious pluralism refers to the belief in two or more religions as being equally valid or acceptable. More than mere tolerance, religious pluralism accepts multiple paths to God or gods as a possibility.

Three things religious pluralism says…

1) “If we live a good life then we get to the afterlife.  Isn’t this what all religions teach?” 

2) “Aren’t all religions the same and basically teach the same thing?” 

3) “It doesn’t matter what you believe as long as you are sincere.” 

-Acts 17:30-31

“The commercialized mindset moves away from personal conviction toward pragmatic effectiveness. It feels that if the consumer is unhappy with the presentation, there must be something wrong with it. When this feeling becomes overriding, it circles around and redefines the “truth” being presented so that the presentation can be made enjoyable. If the claim that Jesus is the only way of salvation offends people, the commercialized mindset will either not talk about it or stop believing it.”

“The psychologized mindset defines love as whatever the other person feels is loving. The effect is the same as with the commercialized mindset. If a person or group finds your summons to believe on Jesus for salvation to be arrogant instead of humble and loving, then, if you have the psychologized mindset, you will feel guilty and apologetic. It must be your fault. If this mindset becomes overriding, it too will circle around and change not only the presentation, but, if necessary, the thing presented, so that the other person will not feel unloved.”

“In this way, the unhappy consumer and the offended listener take on a power that once belonged only to the Bible. There is an epidemic fear of man behind these two mindsets. In the name of marketing savvy or sensitive communication, cowardice capitulates to the world, and we surrender the offensive truth of Christ’s uniqueness and supremacy.”

-John Piper, Jesus, the Only Way to God: Must You Hear The Gospel to be Saved? 

*** There are few things you can believe in this pluralistic world that can be more consequential than the Biblical truth that Jesus is the only way to God. And yet, this is exactly what Scripture teaches us to believe.  Not as a statement of hate but as one of hope. 

Core Values: Blessing

Feb 4, 2019 2454


Romans 12:9-21

To be a blessing is to apply biblical doctrine to my actual lived out life.  

1. Love authentically, v. 9

2. Live in the Big Picture, v. 10-11

Love one another with brotherly affection.

Outdo one another in showing honor.

Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord.

3. Keep doing old things, v. 12-13

4. Practice harmony, v. 14-16

“The Church owes Paul to the prayer of Stephen.”


5. Think and do, v. 17-21

Questions for reflection…

1. What should you be hating right now but aren’t?

2. When are you around others who live a different note than you and what are you like in those environments? 

3. How much of what you do is an accurate reflection of what you really think?

4. Of all you heard today, what will you still be thinking about on Thursday?

Core Values: Mission

Jan 28, 2019 2452


2 Corinthians 5:17-20

1. Missions is more than action, it is identity

-You have a ministry and have been given a message

-Salvation has a cost

2. Your Identity is an Ambassador

Definition: a diplomatic agent of the highest rank accredited to a foreign government or sovereign as the resident representative of his or her own government or sovereign

-The message is not our own. 

3. The Message is the Gospel

What is the Gospel?

1 Corinthians 15:3-4

-According to the Scriptures 

-Sharing the Gospel is not a negotiation

4. Find your mission

Core Values: Community

Jan 21, 2019 5316


Ephesians 2:11-22

a) similarity- we are alike

b) affinity- we like each other and the same things

c) community- we like what God does when we are together

1. Jesus is necessary to Gospel community, v. 13-16

a. separated from Christ

b. alienated from the commonwealth of Israel 

c. strangers to the covenants of promise

d. having no hope

e. without God in the world

2. Gospel community is deep and wide, v. 17-18

a. fellow citizens

b. saints

c. members of the household of God

d. apostles

e. prophets

f. Christ Jesus

3. Together we become, v. 19-21

4. God builds community so he can inhabit community, v. 22

-Psalm 133

Core Values: Gospel

Jan 14, 2019 2598


Rom. 3:9-20

What we see in this section are eight things…

a) the capacity to be good enough doesn’t exist

b) no one understands 

c) no one seeks God

d) all have turned aside

e) together they have become worthless

f) there is no fear of God before their eyes

g) the Bible builds a irrefutable case against humanity

h) the whole world is accountable to God

Romans 3:21-25

1. God is a god of relationship, v. 21

Notice two things: 

a) God didn’t wait for us to come looking for it, he “manifested” it, put it on display for the world to see.  

b) the entire Old Testament, the “law and Prophets” tells us about it

2. What Jesus accomplished is enough for anyone, v. 22

a) life-perfect

b) death- sufficient

c) resurrection- confirming

3. God’s goodness exceeds your badness, v. 23

“…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and (all) are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood…”

“redemption”- means the freedom that comes from the payment of a ransom. 

“propitiation”- means that God is not mad at you because of your sins

4.  You can experience this for yourself, v. 25

a) acknowledge- means you not just agree with but understand the consequences of these truths for your life.

b) acceptance- means you accept what Christ has done on your behalf. 

c) actuality -means the truths of the Gospel are actually being experienced and displayed in your life.  

Come In, Dig In, Buy In

Jan 7, 2019 2852


1. Come in - 1 Corinthians 6:9-11

Three words…

a) washed- Because the sinner is unclean, polluted as it were by the filth of his sins. Whoever obtains remission of sins has his sins put, so to speak, out of God's sight — is cleansed from them in the sight of God.  They are washed, they are clean. 

b) sanctified- to separate from profane things and dedicate to God, to purify by expiation, to free from the guilt of sin. Expiation means the act of making amends or reparation for guilt or wrongdoing; atonement.

c) justified- to make a person righteous, such as they are and wish themselves to be considered.  

2. Dig in- Psalm 34:8

Two words:  

a) involve  

b) immerse

3. Buy in- Malachi 3:6-12

One reality:  origin & ownership

Old Words For A New Year

Dec 31, 2018 2722


2 Corinthians 11:1-6

1. Thoughts

a) intellectual knowledge- informs and influences your thoughts

b) moral knowledge- informs and influences your actual living

2. Simple

-2 Corinthians 1:12

3. Pure

4. Christ

-John 1:1-18

-Colossians 1:15-20

-1 Timothy 2:5-6

-Acts 4:11-12

-Isaiah 53:1-7

-Philippians 2:1-11

The Advent of Love

Dec 24, 2018 2144


1 John 3:1-10

1. This love is transforming, v. 1b-3

“In the world it is call Tolerance, but in hell it is called Despair…the sin that believes in nothing, cares for nothing, seeks to know nothing, interferes with nothing, enjoys nothing, hates nothing, finds purpose in nothing, lives for nothing, and remains alive because there is nothing for which it will die.”

-Dorothy Sayers

a) “we are God’s children”- 

b) “what we will be has not yet appeared”

c) “we shall be like Him”- 

2. This love destroys, v. 4-9

3. This love clarifies, v. 10

-Amos 5:21-27

Questions for reflection…

What has changed the most about you this year?

What do you want to understand more as a result of this morning? 

Was there one thing in particular that you want to discuss with your family over lunch? 

Before you leave this morning, what should you pray about? 

The Advent of Joy

Dec 17, 2018 2508


Luke 2:8-14

1. “For unto you…"

2. “…is born…"

-Galatians 4:4-7

“To be under the Law means that the Law has jurisdiction and authority over a person to judge and condemn.  If such a person breaks the Law (sins), then there is a necessary judgment and condemnation based on the Law.  All law-breaking brings separation between God and the sinner and results in death.  So, to be under the Law means that the person is obligated to keep that Law in all its aspects, and if he does not the Law condemns him.”  

-Matt Slick

3. “…this day…"

4. “…in the city of David…"

- Micah 5:2

5. “…a Savior…"

-Matthew 1:21

a. I can no longer find my identity in my sin because there is no identity in that which Jesus came to eradicate otherwise there would be no basis for knowing who I am and the incarnation would be nullified. 

b. I can no longer pay back my enemies for their sins against me.

c. God has done something about my sin.

6. "…who is Christ the Lord.” 

Advent - The Absurdity of Hope

Dec 3, 2018 2497


Philippians 2:12-16

1. Obedience, v. 12-13

Obedience is inconsistent because…

1) we still count equality with God as a thing to be grasped

2) obedience is an expression of humility 

2. Distinction, v. 14-15

grumbling- internal

disputing- external

crooked- nature

twisted- choice

3. Identification, v. 16

“The Bible, like all sacred writings, contains helpful accounts of ancient myths but is not literally true.” -Quote agreed with by a large number of American Millenials

-Amos 8:11-13

-John 1:1, 14

The Beauty of God's Heart

Nov 26, 2018 2110


2 Samuel 7:18-22

1. With initiation in mind, v. 18

-Genesis 1:1-3

2. With “house” in mind, v. 18-19

-Exodus 34:6-7

-Exodus 34:8

3. With knowledge, v. 20

4. With greatness in mind, v. 21

a) because of your promise

b) according to your own heart

Progression when it comes to the heart…

a) old heart

-Jeremiah 17:9-10

b) new heart

-Ezekiel 36:25-27

c) God’s heart

What if this is the way God designed life to be?

Can you be trusted with the greatness of God’s heart?

How To Love People You Don’t Like

Nov 19, 2018 2662


Matthew 27:34-40

1. Loving ourselves means learning not to settle

-To whom have you given the power to decide how you should be loved? 

2. Loving ourselves moves us from duty to desire

3. Loving ourselves mean we move from roles to responsibility

Roles in our family system…

The Air Traffic Controller

The Accountant

The Noble Martyr

The Fixer

The Sheriff

The Enabler

The Narcissist

The Ghost

The Little Girl/Boy

The Bully

The Comedian

The Peacekeeper

The Problem Child

The Scapegoat

The Good Boy/Girl

The Helper

4. Loving yourself means you begin to regard yourself

Regard means “to have or show respect or concern for.” 

-regard….…..resentment…..…reward behavior

Spiritual Blindness and Spiritual Sight

Nov 11, 2018 2316


Spiritual Blindness and Spiritual Sight

John 9:17-41

Characteristics of Spiritual Blindness

1. Stubbornness

2. Personal preference vs inclining towards the unknown

3. Desperate to be right

4. Dulls the senses

Characteristics of Spiritual Sight 

1.Divine initiative 

2. Recognize Christ

3. Results in Worship

4. Proclamation

How To Be Consequential

Nov 4, 2018 2602


How To Be Consequential

John 9:1-17

1. Learning to see is a choice, v. 1

“The only thing worse than being blind is having sight but no vision.” -Helen Keller

2. We look for blame, God looks for opportunity, v. 2-3

“I just don’t believe the God of Christianity exists.  God allows terrible suffering in the world.  So he might be either all-powerful but not good enough to end evil and suffering, or else he might be all-good but not powerful enough to end evil and suffering.  Either way the all-good, all-powerful God of the bible couldn’t exist.” 

Framework for thinking about evil and suffering...

a. When you think about it, the existence of evil and suffering is actually evidence for the existence of God because people have a sense that what is happening is wrong and shouldn’t be happening. 

b. Upon what is this sense of injustice founded?  How do you know this is wrong?  If there is no God then why do you know to expect better, desire it and are angry when it doesn’t happen?                                                                                                                        

c. Evil and suffering  causes us to feel the limits of our humanity. We can feel how deeply we want to stop the suffering all around us but cannot because of our human limitations.  Therefore, it is hard to conceive of a God who has the capacity, who is all powerful and yet he chooses not to do something about all of this. 

d. God has done something but He didn’t do what we would have done if we were God.  We all want to do away with evil and suffering in ways that are insufficient because they are temporary.  God has chosen to deal with the problem of evil and suffering in a way that is eternal. 

e. Because Jesus did come, God put himself on the hook of human suffering in the person of Jesus.  Because of this, evil and suffering has a context, God is making all things new.  He created the world to be governed by love and goodness and it will one day be.  In the meantime, our lives can be used as single candle, added to the flame of God’s goodness that announces to a dark and suffering world that because God has come to us, there is a way out of the darkness. 

3. There is an urgency that is born of identity, v. 4-5

4. Obedience leads to experience, v. 6-7

5. Evangelism born of explanation, v. 8-17

A Conversation in Three Movements - Third Movement: What Are The Implications of Jesus Being God?

Oct 28, 2018 2808


John 8:48-59

1. We are free from seeking our own glory, v. 50
-1 Peter 4:1-5

2. Death no longer has power over us, v. 51
-2 Corinthians 5:1-10

“We have no consciousness after you die.  For us we fear death because we are born knowing only life.  For me, the knowledge that I am going to die creates the focus that I bring to being alive.” 
-Neil deGrasse Tyson

So what can I take away from this passage?

a) I was created to live forever
b) in this body I am going to suffer
c) its not about being set free (Greek) but about being forever (Christian)
c) for the Christian, death is the transition to Life
d) the Holy Spirit resides in us as assurance of these things
e) these truths are intended to encourage me
f) to be away from the body is to be with the Lord
g) I was created to live a life that pleases God
h) my life on this earth will matter in heaven

3. Jesus is the divine son of God, v. 59

What does this mean for us...

1. We have a God who keep this word
2. God has acted personally, at great cost to himself, to do something about our greatest problem.  
3. You have a resource you can trust in the Bible.
4. Life change is possible. 
-Acts 3:17-26

When Love Doesn't Make Sense

Oct 21, 2018 2694


John 11:1-44

A Conversation in Three Movements - Second Movement: What Does It Mean To Have God as Your Father?

Oct 15, 2018 2678


John 8:39-47

1. Believe God, v. 39-40

-Genesis 15:1-6

-Galatians 3:1-9

2. Love God, v. 41-42

Three types of love ...

a) eros- romantic love.  

b) phileo- relational, brotherly love. 

c) agape- to have an unconditional preference for, to take pleasure in, to prize above other things and be unwilling to abandon or do without.  

3. Hears the Word, v. 43-47

Questions to think about...

Do you believe in God or do you believe God?  What is the difference?

Which of the three types of love best describes the way you love God?

Is the way you love God changing?  If so, how?

Do the words of God find a resting place in you?  

Are you most often offended or convicted by the teachings of the Bible?  What does that say to you about you? About the Bible?

Luke 24:50-53

Oct 7, 2018 2946


1. The Ascension Detonated the Helper (verses Luke 24:50-51)

a. The Helper Comes with the Nearness of God (John 14:16-17)

b. The Helper Comes with Boldness (Luke 10:16, Luke 12:11-12, Matthew 10:10)

c. The Helper Comes with Joy (Romans 1:16)

2. The Ascension Detonated Radical Worship (verses Luke 24:52-53)

A Conversation In Three Movements Part One: Trust The Process

Sep 30, 2018 2544


John 8:31-38 1. Abide “In a nutshell, abiding in Christ means allowing His Word to fill our minds, direct our wills, and transform our affections. In other words, our relationship to Christ is intimately connected to what we do with our Bibles!” -Sinclair Ferguson 2. Know “ginosko”- “to learn to know, come to know, get a knowledge of.” Four things that helps us learn to know... a) affliction- “It was good for me that I was afflicted, that I might learn your statues. The law of your mouth is better to me than thousands of gold and silver pieces.” - Psalm 119:71-72 b) suffering “Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered.” -Hebrews 5:8 c) modeling d) dialogue “And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise. “ -Deuteronomy 6:6-7 3. Freedom Progression of our thoughts about freedom... a) Old Testament- freedom was deliverance from slavery, liberation b) classical freedom- inner freedom for the Stoics who believed in an internal detachment from the world (escapism). For Aristotle and Plato it was external, mainly having to do with political freedom and was experienced in the context of the law. c) cultural freedom-our culture thinks of freedom in terms of a lack of norms, laws or restrictions so people are free to do whatever they want which leads to destruction personally as well as culturally. d) New Testament- the predominant note of the New Testament is freedom in Christ from bondage to sin. Human beings by nature “love darkness” and “hate the light.” Because of this we live in a state of unreality. Throughout the Bible God is simply saying, “Freedom is what you were created for and the by-product of this biblical freedom is human flourishing as well as cultural flourishing." “When we come into bondage to the Word of God we come into freedom, because the Word liberates us from the lustful pull of our own nature, and brings us on, via the pathway of hard obedience, into new realms of living for God. It is the Law of Liberty.” -Alec Motyer ”True freedom is not the liberty to do anything we please, but the liberty to do what we ought; and it is genuine liberty because doing what we ought now pleases us.” -D.A. Carson Questions for reflection… Today we said that abiding in the word means allowing the Bible to fill your mind, direct your will and transform your affections. Of those three, which do you most need the Bible to do right now? What is the hardest thing you’ve been through in this past year and what did you learn from it? Who do you spend time with on a consistent basis that nourishes you spiritually? What would change in the way you thought about Christianity if you believed the the goal for the Christian really was freedom?

Following Jesus

Sep 23, 2018 2602


John 8:12-30 1. You don’t walk in darkness “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” -John 1:1-5 “This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him is no darkness at all. If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood fo Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.” - I John 1:5-7 2. You believe all the truths about Jesus, v. 21-28 Lenses through which we look at Jesus... a) ourselves b) our intellect c) our experiences d) our preferences e) our culture 3. You live with a sense of God’s presence, v. 29 “Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there! If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me. If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,” even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.” -Psalm 139:7-12 4. You do what is pleasing to God, v. 29 “His delight is not in the strength of the horse, nor his pleasure in the legs of a man, but the Lord takes pleasure in those who fear him, in those who hope in his steadfast love.” -Psalm 147:10-11 “Finally, then, brothers, we ask and urge you in the Lord Jesus, that as you received from us how you ought to walk and to please God, just as you are doing, that you do so more and more.” -I Thessalonians 4:1 Questions for reflection... Is there any part of your life where you are walking in darkness? What do you find hard to believe about Jesus? Does the thought of God being everywhere bring you comfort or concern? How often do you think, “Is this pleasing to God?”

The Beauty of Law and Gospel

Sep 16, 2018 3056


John 8:1-11 1. Jesus upholds the law, v. 1-5 This is important in three different contexts... a) historically b) situationally c) currently “If a man commits adultery with the wife of his neighbor, both the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.” -Leviticus 20:10 2. Jesus applies the law, v. 6-10 3. Jesus fulfills the law, v. 11 “But now the righteousness of God has been manifested apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to it-the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction: for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show Gods’ righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.” -Romans 3:21-26 Questions to consider... Who or what is your faith in? Is the grace of God big enough for you? What behaviors accompany that belief? How does the Gospel empower me to stop sinning?

Communion 9.9.2018

Sep 9, 2018 1708


Matthew 6:9-13

Faith at Work

Sep 2, 2018 3070


Genesis 2:15 & 3:17 How you know you are making work an idol: -Your work is the primary source of your satisfaction -The goal is to make a name for yourself -Freedom in the right priorities Working for Jesus gives you freedom to worship God through your work. Working for Jesus gives you freedom to serve others. Working for Jesus gives you freedom to trust God in your work which also allows rest from it. Working for Jesus gives you joy at work. In order to be a witness at work, you must: -Have to be intentional -Demonstrate consistency -Pray, Read, Ready “…in the Gospel, Jesus has secured salvation from our sin, satisfaction for our souls, and significance in our work in such a way that we are now free to worship God wholeheartedly as we work, to love others selflessly in our work, and to trust God completely with our work.” - David Platt

Ross King: Cultivating Thought Through Love, Lyric, and Insight

Aug 26, 2018 3026


Singer/Songwriter Ross King led us in worship and shared his songs and stories with us.

Feasting On God

Aug 20, 2018 2954


The Most Important Question You Will Ever Answer

Aug 12, 2018 2456


John 7:25-36 “I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: ‘I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept His claim to be God.’ That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic — on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come up with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.” -C.S. Lewis 1. God has had a plan all along Three commonly held beliefs about the Messiah at that time are all listed in this chapter: a) no one will know where he is from, v. 26 b) the messiah will perform miraculous signs, v. 31 c) He will come from Bethlehem and be of the lineage of David, v. 42 “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David, a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” -Luke 2:10-11 2. There is a solution to your sin problem “I am good, but not an angel. I do sin, but I am not the devil. I am just a small girl in a big world trying to find someone to love.” -Marilyn Monroe “Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened, that it cannot save, or his ear dull, that it cannot hear; but your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden his face from you so that he does not hear. For your hands are defiled with blood and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies; your tongue mutters wickedness.” Isaiah 59:1-3 “How, in the name of logic, common sense, and experience, could an imposter — that is a deceitful, selfish, depraved man — have invented, and consistently maintained from the beginning to end, the purest and noblest character known in history with the most perfect air of truth and reality? How could He have conceived and successfully carried out a plan of unparalleled beneficence, moral magnitude, and sublimity, and sacrificed His own life for it, in the face of the strongest prejudices of His people and age?” -Philip Schaff 3. Places a high priority on His words ”Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came; and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.” -Matthew 7:24-27

Why People Hated Jesus

Aug 5, 2018 2726


Why People Hated Jesus John 7:1-24 1. They didn’t believe in Him, v. 1-5 “Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Feast, many believed in his name when they saw the signs that he was doing. But Jesus on his part did not entrust himself to them, because he knew all people and needed no one to bear witness about man, for he himself knew what was in man. -John 2:23-25 2. He lived according to different timing, v. 6-9 3. He was a threat to religion, v. 10-13 4. He preferred God’s will to his own, v. 14-18 5. He was always seeing a bigger picture, v. 19-25 “See, you are well! Sin no more, that nothing worse may happen to you.” -John 5:14

Praying For God's Glory

Jul 29, 2018 3316


Matthew 6:9-13 1. Lords prayer a. Pray like This b. Make Your name be Hallowed c. Cause Your Kingdom to come d. Your will be done e. Day by day bread f. Forgive our debts g. Keep us safe from ourselves and Satan. 2. New Testament vocabulary for prayer a. Proseuchomai – προσεύχομαι Matt 6:9 & James 5:17-19 b. Aiteo -αἰτέω James 1:5 & Matt 7:9 c. Deomai – δέομαι Matt 9:38 d. Erotao - ἐπερωτάω Matt 15:21-25 e. Parakaleo παρακαλέω Romans 12:1 & 2 Corinthians 12:8 f. Entugchano –ἐντυγχάνω Hebrews 7:25 & Romans 8 3. Three things to take away from today a. The Primary purpose of Prayer is that God may be Glorified b. Time to come to God in Prayer and ASK! c. Get some big rocks, because we serve a big God!

How To Disagree To The Glory Of God

Jul 22, 2018 2540


Romans 15:1-7 1. An obligation, v. 1-2 2. An example, v. 3-4 References in Psalm 69 to Jesus include... 4- hated and lied about by his enemies 8- estranged from his family v.11- shunned by the people v.12- talked about by rulers v.12- sung about by drunkards “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours. But all these things they will do to you on account of my name, because they do not know him who sent me.” -John 15:18-21 Four things we get from the Bible… a) instruction b) endurance c) encouragement d) hope 3. A prayer, v. 5-6 Paul prays for two things... a) to live in such harmony with one another b) in accord with Christ Jesus 4. A practice, v. 7

What I've Learned In 41 Years Of Ministry

Jul 15, 2018 2906


Mark 12: 28 - 31 1. You need to Love God Completely a. Is the Lord the all consuming passion of your life? b. Do I have a deep and abiding affection for the Lord? c. Am I striving to become like Him? d. Do you love anything more than you love Christ? e. Do I enjoy spending time with the Lord? f. Do I tell the Lord that I love Him? g. Do I talk with the Lord as much as I can? -Psalm 139:23 - 24 2. You need to Love Others Genuinely -1 John 4:20 Places to meet people a. Join a local gym b. Civic organizations c. Coach a sports team - not just a Christian team d. Invest in Kids or Grandkids Schools e. Meals with neighbors f. Study or work at a Local coffee shops g. Prayer walk your neighborhood h. Volunteer to help at a local university - international students 3. Your Family Must Be a Priority -Eph. 5:25 - Wife -3 John 4 - Children 4. Get involved in Missions - Matt. 28:18 - 20 -Acts 1:8 5. Life is not always going to be easy -James 1:2 - 4 6. Our lives need to exhibit Joy -Philippians 4:4 - 5 -Habakkuk 3: 17 - 18 7. Give - Be Generous -1 Timothy 6:18 -Malachi 3:10 8. Get Involved with Small Groups 9. Always do your best - what you are doing is an offering to God -Colossians 3:17 10. Love What you Do. -Colossians 3:23 11. Our Example is as important as our teaching -Philippians 3:7 -1 Corinthians 11:1 12. Be Yourself -1 Samuel 16:7 13. God is always working in me -Philippians 1:6

Seeing Into The Text

Jul 8, 2018 2784


1 Samuel 17:1-40 Seeing Into the Text 1. Accommodation robs me of authority, v. 16 accommodate…tolerate…become 2. I am responsible for obedience, God is responsible for outcomes, v. 17-18 3. There is power in really believing some things, v. 24-27 “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent.” -Colossians 1:15-18 4. Expect resistance when you upset the status quo, v. 28-30 5. What happens in private determines what happens in public, v. 31-37 6. Know and like who you are so much that you can resist being anybody else, v. 38-40

The Gospel According To Scorekeepers

Jul 1, 2018 2205


1 Corinthians 13:5 Three reasons why we shouldn’t keep score: 1. …because we don’t have all the facts. -James 1:19 “Our use of mobile phones and the internet… collapse boundaries between social groups and conversations and break down generational, educational, and social distinctions. We are all brought closer to each other in a way that disguises and is hostile to pronounced differences of competence, authority, and right to honour. Our media tend to flatten out our social spaces in an egalitarian way, falsely suggesting that all voices merit an equal part in the conversation. As conversations that would previously be clearly separated from each other start to eavesdrop upon, to intrude in, and to become entangled with each other, the results can be volatile.” -Alastair Roberts 2. …because it’s a mark of immaturity -1 Corinthians 3:1-4 3. …because it turns a road into a highway. If I could buy myself a conscience that wasn’t broken Mend every fence I drove my hard head through Re-lock all the doors I wish I never opened Unlearn the things I wish I never knew And it came out through the bottle It came out through my fists It came out way too early I wish it never did Push it down, it comes out sideways Push it down, it comes out sideways Bitter roads turn into highways Push it down it comes out sideways I have days where it’s just nose above water Keep it together while I fall apart I have moments when I act just like my father The only man that ever broke my heart And it comes out in my silence Sometimes unwanted tears Comes out disguised as anger but it’s really fear Push it down, it comes out sideways Push it down, it comes out sideways Bitter roads turn into highways Push it down, it comes out sideways “Sideways” by Travis Meadows -Hebrews 12:14-15 4. How keeping score affects our relationship: a. with others -leads to resentment b. with God -leads to entitlement c. with ourselves -leads to self-hatred 5. Make peace, don’t keep the peace.

What Is Your Calling?

Jun 24, 2018 2266


Colossians 3:1-17 "The most dangerous heresies the church is called on to combat from time to time are not those which openly and blatantly assail the person of our Lord but rather those which subtly detract from His dignity while giving the appearance of honoring Him.” - Everett Harrison 1. Keep Seeking v. 1-2 a. Shop around. Unless you try on the outfit, you’ll never know if it fits. Do the same with vocations, avocations, hobbies and skills. You’ll need to sample every flavor to know your true favorite taste. (I’m not making this up!) b. Find a problem to solve. Being the solution makes your work feel meaningful. Having an issue to work against also gives you a villain to play against—and makes you the hero. c. Burn your plans. Your life will not go according to plan. Nobody’s ever has. So don’t worry if you get off track. The track was imaginary anyway. 2. Set Your Mind on Christ v.2, 5-10 -Matthew 13:15 3. Hide v.3, 12-14 Grace covers us completely (John 1:14; Ephesians 2:8–9; 2 Timothy 1:9). God chose us and calls us friend (Ephesians 1:4; John 15:15). We have forgiveness (1 John 1:9; Ephesians 1:7). God provides for all of our needs (Philippians 4:19). We have the peace that surpasses all understanding (Philippians 4:7; John 14:27).

Why Mike Tyson Is Right

Jun 17, 2018 2454


James 1:1-8 1. There is a way we need to think, v. 2 “Count”means “to have authority over, to rule, to lead, to think, to go before.” Questions that foster right thinking about trials... a) Do I believe God is at work in this? b) How do I see God at work in this? c) What would it look like for me to join God and participate in my sanctification? 2. There is something you need to know, v. 3 With every trial will come a temptation and the temptation is to trust something or someone other than God to see you through this period of testing. 2 Corinthians 11:21-33 “In the crushing, in the pressing you are making new wine. In the soil I now surrender, you are breaking new ground. So I yield to you and to your careful hand when I trust you I don’t need to understand. Make me Your vessel, make me an offering, make me whatever you want me to be. I came here with nothing but all you have given me. Jesus, bring new wine out of me. New Wine, Hillsong Does your heart more lean towards what God is doing to you or in you? 3. There is something you need to allow, v. 4 Steadfastness is the characteristic of a person who is not swerved from their deliberate purpose and loyalty to faith and piety by even the greatest trials and sufferings. Steadfastness does three things... a) Teaches you the insufficiency of sin. b) The sufficiency of God. c) It reminds you of the capacity of self. 4. There is someone you need to ask, v. 5-8

Communion 6.10.2018

Jun 10, 2018 1078


1 Corinthians 11:23-26 1. The death of Jesus was necessary. How does the death of Jesus inform the way you think about your sin? 2. The death of Jesus was personal What does it stir in you when you understand that Jesus died in your place, for your sins? 3. The death of Jesus was consequential. How does the death of Jesus inform and affect your daily living?

Everyday Evangelism

Jun 3, 2018 2282


Everyday Evangelism Matthew, 1 Corinthians, Ephesians, Acts Matthew 28:16-20 -The Great Commission Evangelism -The spreading of the Christian Gospel by public preaching and/or personal witness Long-term Relationships a. Builds Trust b. Provides Credentials c. Multiple Opportunities to Witness -We have to be on purpose in order to evangelize everyday. 1 Corinthians 1:1; 17 “Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians is a classic of pastoral response: affectionate, firm, clear, and unswerving in the conviction that God among them, revealed in Jesus and present in His Holy Spirit, continued to be the central issue in their lives. He takes them by the hand and and goes over all the old ground again, directing them in how to work al the glorious details of God’s saving love in to their love for one another.” -Eugene Peterson Ephesians 1:1; 4-6 Short-Term Relationships a. Biblical Truth -Sin -Holy God -Jesus is the only way b. Your experience Acts 19:1-2 “Have you no wish for others to be saved? Then you’re not saved yourself, be sure of that!” -Charles Spurgeon

Radically Ordinary Hospitality

May 27, 2018 2512


Luke 14:12-24 1. A picture 2. A definition “Radically ordinary hospitality is using your Christian home in a daily way that seeks to make strangers neighbors, and neighbors family of God. It brings glory to God, serves others and lives out the gospel in word and deed.” -Rosaria Butterfield 3. Basic requirements 1) We live under the authority of God and the church. 2) We must work hard to know who our neighbors are and how they struggle. 4. Five things to remember... 1) Hospitality is an expression of reciprocity. 2) Must distinguish between hospitality and entertaining. "Entertaining focuses attention on self. Hospitality focuses attention on others. Hospitality involves setting a table that makes everyone feel comfortable. It chooses a menu that allows face time with guests instead of being chained to the stovetop. It picks up the house to make things pleasant, but doesn’t feel the need to conceal evidences of everyday life. It sometimes sits down to dinner with flour in its hair. It allows the gathering to be shaped by the quality of the conversation rather than the cuisine. Hospitality shows interest in the thoughts, feelings, pursuits, and preferences of its guests. It is good at asking questions and listening intently to answers. Entertaining is always thinking about the next course. Hospitality burns the rolls because it was listening to a story. Entertaining obsesses over what went wrong. Hospitality savors what was shared." -Jen Wilkin 3) Hospitality is a culturally acceptable form of evangelism. "God saved me through hospitality. To be more precise, God used hospitality crucially in his pursuit of my soul. After years of a debate between my agnosticism and my longing for God—a debate that had taken place in conference halls and libraries and classrooms, in bedrooms and liquor stores and clubs—closing arguments took place in an unexpected location: a Christian family’s home. A pastor and his wife, friends of my parents, invited me into their home to stay. During the mornings, I met with the pastor and aired my grievances with God and Christianity. The Bible passages and commentary he presented to me were vital to what God did in my heart in those weeks. But just as vital was the evidence his wife brought to the debate. Her evidence was often wordless: space made in her afternoon to drink tea with me or take a walk; clean sheets in a bedroom I shared with one of her own daughters; a cultivated calm in a home full of children and teens; a hug given freely with a peck on the cheek. The words were necessary. But the hospitality gave the words context and weight. -Tilly Dillehay 4) Hospitality is a requirement for leadership in the church. “Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. He must mange his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church? He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil.” -1 Timothy 3:2-7 5) Hospitality turns your home into a hospital/incubator.

Gospel Truths

May 20, 2018 2060


Ephesians 1.3-14 -You are chosen to be holy and blameless, v.4 -You are adopted into God's family, v.5 -You are redeemed and forgiven, v.7 -You are lavished with wisdom and understanding, v.8 -You are sealed with the Holy Spirit, v.13

The Beauty of God Being God

May 13, 2018 3114


John 6:60-71 1. God is always capable of more than we can understand, v. 60-62 -Job 38:1-3 2. God controls the salvation process, v. 63-65 -Romans 9:6-18 When you embrace this simple truth it does two things: a) leaves you with a deep sense of gratitude towards God b) informs how you pray for the unconverted 3. There is always room for progress in and towards what we believe, v. 66-71 “we have believed and have come to know” Questions from the Congregation 1. Do we have free will? Can we say no to God once He has revealed himself? Adam and Eve first had revelation of God and even daily intimacy with Him. Then they chose to eat of the Tree. If we do not have free will after God's revelation, how did Adam and Eve have it? 2. If God draws us to Himself, why does he need us to proclaim Him? Or put another way, if we don't proclaim Him to someone, will that person lose heaven because we didn't do our job? 3. On different occasions in this chapter Jesus refers to “the last day." Is that a reference to Judgement day? The reference to us being raised up seems to imply we are somewhere different prior to being raised up than we are after being raised up? Can you clarify? 4. When Jesus talks about eating his body and drinking blood is this a reference to Communion? Is there another metaphorical meaning? 5. My question from John 6 is about the “age of accountability” idea that many churches teach. I think the teaching says basically that if a child dies before reaching an age where they can accept Christ, they go to heaven anyway because God has mercy and the children are not held accountable. But Jesus says that God gives people to him, and that we are unable to come otherwise so what about the young, the mentally incapable, the native person in the unreached people group that will never hear of Christ?

Genesis 16:1-13

May 6, 2018 3104


Dr. Dan Allender, founder of the Allender Center, preaches from Genesis 16 on seeing the God who sees us.

Special Guest - Zayne Smith

Apr 29, 2018 300


Zayne shares his takeaways from the book This Changes Everything: How the Gospel Transforms the Teen Years by Jaquelle Crowe.

Seeking Jesus, Finding Truth - Part 2

Apr 29, 2018 2613


John 6:41-59 1. Jesus teaches through the familiar, v. 41-42 2. God initiates the relationship v. 43-45 How God draws... a) teaching b) hearing Two types of listening: 1) listening for discovery- always open to truth because you want to grow, often enlightened, teachable. 2) listening for reinforcement- always open to agreement, often offended, defensive “How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news?’ But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah, says, ‘Lord, who has believed what he has heard form us?’ So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.” -Romans 10:14-17 3) learning 3. Jesus is better, v. 48-59

Seeking Jesus, Finding Truth

Apr 22, 2018 2768


John 6:22-40 1. The capacity to believe is a gift from God, v. 37 A) Calvinism- an attempt to summarize the doctrines emphasized by John Calvin T- total depravity of man U- unconditional election L- limited atonement I- irresistible grace P- perseverance of the saints B) Arminianism- an attempt to summarize the doctrines emphasized by Jacob Arminius 1) Partial Depravity- humanity is depraved but still able to seek God. 2) Conditional election- God only chooses those whom He knows will choose to believe. 3) Unlimited Atonement- Jesus died for everyone, even those who will not believe 4) Resistible Grace- God's call to be saved can be resisted or rejected 5) Conditional Salvation- Christian can lose their salvation if they actively reject the Holy Spirit’s influence in their life C) Biblicist- a willingness to simply believe everything the Bible teaches even when it disagrees with my preferences. ** Notice the balance of v. 37... “All that the Father gives to me will come to me”- affects how I pray! “whoever comes to me I will never cast out”- whosoever will 2. For the Christian there is great assurance, v. 39 “And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.” -Philippians 1:6 “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.” -Ephesians 4:30 3. The work of the son is central to the gift of the Father, v. 40 ”How are you righteous before God?” Only by true faith in Jesus Christ. In spite of the fact that my conscience accuses me that I have grievously sinned against all the commandments of God, and have not kept any one of them, and that I am still ever prone to all that is evil, nevertheless, God, without any merit of my own, out of pure grace, grants me the benefits of the perfect sacrifice of Christ, imputing to me his righteousness and holiness as if I had never committed a single sin or had ever been sinful, having fulfilled myself all the obedience which Christ has carried out for me, if only I accept such favor with a trusting heart.

The Four Soils

Apr 15, 2018 2690


Matthew 13:1-23 1. The Hardened Heart 2. The Superficial Heart 3. The Worldly Heart 4. The Fruitful Heart

The Shaping Nature of Storms

Apr 8, 2018 2530


John 6:15-21 1. Expectation, v. 17 2. Storm, v. 17-18 Notice the mood of the text: “it was now dark” “Jesus had not come to them” “the sea became rough” “a strong wind was blowing” Has your response to difficult times changed the longer you’ve been a Christian? 3. Fear,v. 19 Fear does two things to us: a) Fear signals something beyond itself b) Fear turns all of our thoughts and words inward *fear- ‘phobeo’ to put to flight by terrifying. Four questions that fear answers for us... What do I really want? What is important to me? What do I value? What do I love? How do you remind yourself of God’s faithfulness towards you and your family? 4. Capacity, v. 20-21 “for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.” -2 Timothy 1:7 For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hand, for God gave us a spirit not of fear but o power and love and self-control.” -2 Timothy 1:6-7 I thank God whom I serve, as did my ancestors, with a clear conscience, as I remember you constantly in my prayers night and day. As I remember your tears, I long to see you, that I may be filled with joy. I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you as well. -2 Timothy 1:3-5 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God according to the promise of the life that is in Christ Jesus, To Timothy, my beloved child: Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord. -2 Timothy 1:1-2 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God according to the promise of the life that is in Christ Jesus, To Timothy, my beloved child: Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord. I thank God whom I serve, as did my ancestors, with a clear conscience, as I remember you constantly in my prayers night and day. As I remember your tears, I long to see you, that I may be filled with joy. I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you as well. For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. -2 Timothy 1:1-7 How is your life different after you became a Christian? What capacity do you now possess that you didn’t before you came to Christ?

What The Resurrection Reveals

Apr 1, 2018 2570


1 Corinthians 15:20-24 1. The resurrection is a fact, v. 20 a) preaching has no purpose, v. 14 b) faith is pointless, v. 14 c) there is no solution for sin, v. 17 d) there is no life after death, v. 18 2. There is life after death, v. 20 3. Death comes for a reason, v. 22 4. Jesus Christ came for a reason, v. 22 “In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it.” -John 1:4-5 “I came that they may have life and have it more abundantly.” -John 10:10 5. Someone is in charge, v. 24

How God Wins

Mar 25, 2018 2608


John 12:12-19 1. By keeping His word, v. 12-16 2. By being obedient Two things about obedience… a) If you can know the outcome, consequence, or the result of every act of obedience then it’s no longer obedience but manipulation. b) Obedience requires abandonment. “Abandonment to God is the fruitful way to experience good under God. It means relinquishing ‘our way.’ It means not being angry or resentful when things do not go our way. It means that in God’s hands we are content for him to take charge of outcomes. And in that posture we make way for him to occupy our lives with us, and achieve what is best for us and for others far beyond anything we can even imagine.” -Dallas Willard “And he began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed and after three days rise again. And he said this plainly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. But turning and seeing his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me Satan! For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.” -Mark 8:31-33 3. By seeing the Big Picture Seeing the Big Picture means two things... a) calibration “But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desire of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passion and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another and envying one another.” -Galatians 5:16-26 b) character Here are two ways to tell you are not living in the Big Picture: 1) everybody knows every injustice you experience 2) every time something goes wrong it is suddenly the biggest thing in your life and the life of everybody who really loves you Injustices Jesus suffered in the last week of his life: washes the feet of Judas denied by Peter, his most passionate follower...three times questioned by people who know less than him He has power He chooses not to use people choose him to be crucified instead of a known criminal they make him carry his own cross he is mocked as he is dying he gets to watch soldiers gamble for his clothes his mother watches him die

The Sufficiency of Not Much

Mar 18, 2018 2454


John 6:1-15 Introductory information... a) The most experienced miracle of Jesus b) This is the only miracle mentioned in all four gospels besides the resurrection c) Three kinds of miracles: creative, transformative, restorative. This is a creative miracle. 1. Motivation, v. 2-4 a) curiosity b) religious tradition 2. Testing, v. 5-6 test- “for the purpose of ascertaining his quality, or what he thinks, or how he will behave himself.” “And you shall remember the whole way that the LORD your God has led you these forty years in the wilderness, that he might humble you, testing you to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep his commandments or not.” -Deuteronomy 8:2 “You shall not put the Lord your God to the test, as you tested him at Massah.” -Deuteronomy 6:16 3. Excess, v. 7-13 Three people speak in this section... a) Philip- b) Andrew- c) Jesus- 4. Refusal, v. 14-15

The Jesus You Expect and the Jesus You Need

Mar 11, 2018 2507


John 5:30-47 The Witnesses to Jesus: Jesus God the Father John the Baptist Works of Jesus Old Testament Moses 1. When you depend on God, you hear from God, v. 30-37 2. The Old Testament is all about Jesus, v. 37-40 -Genesis 3:15 a. The savior would be born from a woman b. The savior would suffer c. The savior would conquer -Hebrews 3:1-3 3. The Jesus you need is better than the Jesus you expect, v. 41-44 4. Examine your hope, v. 45-47 "You sum up the whole of New Testament religion if you describe it as the knowledge of God as one’s holy Father. If you want to judge how well a person understands Christianity, find out how much he makes of the thought of being God’s child, and having God as his Father. If this is not the thought that prompts and controls his worship and prayers and his whole outlook on life, it means that he does not understand Christianity very well at all." -J.I. Packer, Knowing God

How We Shine As Immigrants In This World

Mar 4, 2018 2868


Matthew 5:1-12 How do we shine as immigrants of this world? 1. We need to be self-aware, not self-absorbed v. 3, 5 2. We need to reconcile repeatedly. v. 7, 9 3. We need to make much of what God makes much of. v. 4, 6, 8

Jesus Is God: What It Means And Why It Matters

Feb 25, 2018 2830


John 5:18-29 1. What it means. It means four things… a) imitation “Therefore, be imitators of God as beloved children.” -Ephesians 5:1 “beloved"- esteemed, dear, favorite, worthy of love b) affectionate revelation c) life Zoe is the absolute fulness of life, both essential and ethical, life real and genuine, a life active and vigorous, devoted to God, blessed, in the portion even in this world of those who put their trust in Christ. d) judgement 2. Why it matters. 1. God has always been present with His people. 2. It makes Him fit for the work of redemption. 3. God has personally done something about your sin.

John 5:1-17

Feb 18, 2018 2328


Opening Thoughts -Jesus changing water into wine testified to His creative power to change the quality of things. -His cleansing of the temple showed His authority over the institutions of Judaism. -Nicodemus testified to Jesus having come from God, and His role as an authoritative teacher, which was a common Jewish response to Him. -John the Baptist bore witness to Jesus' identity as the Messiah. -The Samaritan woman's testimony implied that Jesus was omniscient [all knowing]. -Many other Samaritans acknowledged Jesus as the Savior of the world, which was a common Gentile response to Him. -The official whose son Jesus healed from afar came to recognize Him as the Healer whose word can overcome the problem of distance as well as disease. Questions Jesus Asked “For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?” -Matthew 16:26 “Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? 4 Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye?” Matthew 7:3-4 “A familiar captivity is frequently more desirable than an unfamiliar freedom” - C.S. Lewis Jesus’ Words Healed him- “He took his bed and walked” Instructed him- “Get up, take up your bed, and walk.” Were immediate- “At once the man was healed” Fulfilled Prophecy- Isaiah 35:3-6 Questions to Think About How do we respond to the healing Jesus has given? Do we respond with praise and thanksgiving? Do we respond with attentiveness to the Messiah? Or do we hoard the blessing we receive and crave for more? Do we gratefully accept what God offers freely, or do we grumble and demand that God play by our rules? Do we respond by seeking out other people in need of blessing so we can point them to Jesus?

Analyzing The Nature of Your Belief in God

Feb 11, 2018 2538


John 4:43-54 1. Talk publicly about Jesus, v. 43-47 "What’s exciting about this “out loud with words” set of propositions is that it can and should lead to real equality, racial unity and radical generosity. This is exactly what unfolded in the early church." -Greg Stier a) real equality- “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” -Galatians 3:28 b) racial unity- “For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility by abolishing the law of commandments expressed in ordinances, that he might create in himself one new man in place of the two, so making peace, and might reconcile us both to God in one body through the cross, thereby killing the hostility. And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near. For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father.” -Ephesians 2:14-18 c) radical generosity- “We want you to know, brothers, about the grace of God that has been given among the churches in Macedonia, for in a severe test of affliction, their abundance of joy and their extreme poverty have overflowed in a wealth of generosity on their part. For they gave according to their means as I can testify, and beyond their means, of their own accord begging us earnestly for the favor of taking part in the relief of the saints- and this, not as we expected, but they gave themselves first to the Lord and then by the will of God to us.” -2 Corinthians 8:1-5 2. Think deeply about how you believe, v. 48-54 Two types of faith in this passage: a) intellectual faith- mere acknowledgment of some fact or event. "Believe that." Starts on the outside and never moves inward. b) personal faith- the conviction and trust to which a person is impelled by a certain inner and higher prerogative and law of soul. "Believe in." Starts on the inside and moves outward. “Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith- that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.” -Philippians 3:8-11 Six things that a Christian does... 1. treasures Christ 2. devalues everything else 3. puts faith in Christ alone 4. knows Him 5. suffers for Him 6. becomes like Him

Communion: Remember and Proclaim

Feb 4, 2018 914


“For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.” -Isaiah 9:6-7 “Now the birth of Jesus Christ took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. And her husband Joseph, being a just man and unwilling to put her to shame, resolved to divorce her quietly. But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” -Matthew 1:18-21 “And in the same region there were shepherds out in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were filled with great fear. And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. And this will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in swaddling cloths and lying in a manger.” -Luke 2:8-12 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John bore witness about him, and cried out, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me ranks before me, because he was before me.’”) For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. No one has ever seen God; the only God, who is at the Father's side, he has made him known.” -John 1:14-18 “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross. And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him, if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard, which has been proclaimed in all creation under heaven, and of which I, Paul, became a minister.” -Colossians 1:15-23 “Who has believed what he has heard from us? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? For he grew up before him like a young plant, and like a root out of dry ground; he had no form or majesty that we should look at him, and no beauty that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows; yet we esteemed him stricken, smitten by God, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our

Answering the Call

Jan 28, 2018 2424


Answering the Call 2 Peter 1:5-11 “Calling is not only a matter of being and doing what we are but also of becoming what we are not yet but are called by God to be.” –Os Guinness “He is so awe inspiring and His summons so commanding that only one response is appropriate - a response as total and universal as the authority of the Caller.” –Os Guinness 1. What is a call? -It is more than a casual suggestion that requires action on the part of the hearer. 2. What did it look like? -A soft whisper that had compression -1 Kings 19:11-13 3. What to do with it? -Hear, Listen, Respond “Our primary calling as followers of Christ is by Him, for Him. Our secondary calling is that everyone, everywhere and in everything should think, speak, live, and act entirely for Him.” –Os Guinness

The Dimensional Gospel

Jan 22, 2018 2569


John 4:11-30 1. Gospel is conceptual, v. 11-15 a) pipeline b) concentric learning c) competency based development 2. Gospel is directional, v. 16-18 3. Gospel is clarifying, v. 19-30 a) “you worship what you do not know” b) “will worship the Father in spirit and truth” c) “for the Father is seeking such people to worship him”

The One Story God Loves To Tell

Jan 14, 2018 2562


John 4:1-10 1. No one out grows the Gospel and no one out sins the Gospel. 2. God doesn’t take his cues on how to treat you from the way people treat you, v. 4 Two shaping questions to consider... 1) What do you know that God doesn’t know? 2) What does God know that you don’t know? Here are a few things that God knows... a) God cannot be surprised by anything about you. b) Every sin you’ve ever committed and will commit were paid for on the Cross. c) God’s heart towards you is unchangeable. d) It’s never too late. 3. Knowing the right things changes every thing, v. 10 Two things Jesus points to... a) the gift of God- b) who it is that asks you for a drink

The Blueprint for a Consequential Life

Jan 7, 2018 2274


John 3:22-36 1. Identify yourself with Jesus, v. 22-24 2. Know yourself, v. 25-30 a) know your smallness b) know your role c) know your joy 3. Believe things that are consequential, v. 31-36 Two things for the believer: a) a Believer has a life that is ruled by eternity b) belief manifests itself in obedience John 8:31-47 Two things for the unbeliever: a) you will never know life as it could be. b) the wrath of God is still on you. The wrath of God is a reference to the settled and active opposition of God’s holy nature to everything that is evil.

A New Year's Prayer

Dec 31, 2017 2490


Ephesians 4:1-16 1. Leverage everything against the Gospel, v. 1-3 2. Be led by the Spirit, v.3 3. Think rightly about God, v. 6 “over all”- “through all”- “in all”- “Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body.” -1 Corinthians 6:18-20 4. Exercise your gift, v. 7 5. High priority on Scripture, v. 8 “All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work.” -2 Timothy 3:16–17 6. Let’s grow, v. 11-15 "unity of the faith" "knowledge of the Son of God" “maturity" 7. Let’s each do our part, v. 16 "every joint" "when each part is working properly" "makes the body grow so that it builds itself up in love”

Love Incarnate

Dec 24, 2017 2401


1 John 4:7-12 1. The love of God is an expression of God’s character, v. 7-8 2. The love of God is visible, v. 9 3. The love of God is defined, v 10 4. The love of God is the standard, v. 11-12

Advent Joy

Dec 17, 2017 146


I Peter 1:6-9 1. THERE IS REJOICING, v. 6 “in”- “this”- “you”- “rejoice”- 2. THERE IS SUFFERING, v. 6 The prepositions of suffering... a) according to the foreknowledge of God the Father b) in the sanctification of the Spirit c) for obedience to Jesus Christ 3. THERE WILL BE A RECOGNITION, v. 7 v. 7- “may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ.” 4. THERE IS SOMETHING TO DO IN THE MEANTIME, v. 8 a) you love him b) you believe in him c) rejoice with joy

Peace As A By-Product

Dec 10, 2017 792


Luke 2:14 1. Honesty- what lies am I telling and what lies am I believing? 2. Obedience- am I consistently surrendering my life to the truths of the Gospel? 3. Service- am I finding ways to serve others or am I serving myself? 4. Gratitude- does my gratitude exceed my expectations? 5. Repentance- as an act of worship am I turning away from sin?

Finding Hope When It Feels Hopeless

Dec 3, 2017 2396


1 Peter 1:1-5 1. Because of the resurrection we have a hope that cannot die, v. 3 a) Hope leans your life forward. b) Hope reframes what is. c) Hope prepares us for what will be. d) Hope empowers us to live with the values of heaven while here on earth. “Hope structures your life in anticipation of the future and influences how you feel in the present. Hope creates a positive mood about an expectation, a goal, or a future situation. Such mental time travel influences your state of mind and alters your behavior in the present. The positive feelings you experience as you look ahead, imagining hopefully what might happen, what you will attain, or who you are going to be, can alter how you currently view yourself.” -Mary Lamia 2. Because of our salvation we have an inheritance that is waiting for us,v. 4 a) imperishable b) undefiled c) unfading 3. Because of God’s power we are being guarded, v. 5

The So Love of God

Nov 26, 2017 2706


John 3:16-21 1. This is what God did, v. 16 “For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.  For one will scarcely die for a righteous person-though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die-but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God.  For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.  More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, though whom we have now received reconciliation.”  -Romans 5:6-11 2. This is what God didn’t do, v. 17 3. This is what we can now do, v. 18
 Notice two things about this verse... a) unbelievers do not have a positive or a neutral standing before God b) this rules out the belief that a sincere person following any religion can have eternal life with God.      4. This is why some people don’t do it, v. 19-21

A Mission of "Must's"

Nov 19, 2017 2680


John 3:1-15 1. The life of Jesus validates the claims of Jesus, v. 1-2 2. Jesus is focused on what matters, v. 3 3. This is a supernatural process, v. 4-12  Three things to understand... a) What does “born again” mean?  b) What does it mean to be “born of the water and the Spirit?” “I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleannesses, and from all your idols I will cleanse you.  And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you.  And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.  And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statues and be careful to obey my rules.”  -Ezekiel 36:225-27 c) It is revealed by it’s effects. Evidences of new birth: -faith in Christ and in His gospel -repentance from sin -prayer -possession of new life  -new desires -love for His people -joy in worship -hunger for His word 4. Jesus is the only way, v. 13-15

Why The Church Is Not A Business

Nov 5, 2017 1764


John 2:13-22 1. Because this is sacred space, v. 14 2. Because we value content over convenience, v. 16 “The consumer of today recognizes the shortage of time, they want to get the most out of every nanosecond, and retailers need to cater to this preference. Convenience means whatever suits you best. It means being able to choose what you want, when and where you want it.” Four types of subtext in churches: a) social reinforcement- “Aren’t we great?” b) selling- “Isn’t this a great church?” c) training- “Isn’t this information great?” d) Worship- “Isn’t God great?” 3. We have one audience, v. 17

Intentional Glory

Oct 29, 2017 2766


John 2:1-11 1. Purposeful, v. 1-5  4:21 – “Woman, believe me, the hour is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem.” 4:23 – “But the hour is coming, and is now here, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father seeks such as these to                worship him.” 5:25 – “Very truly, I tell you, the hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live.” 5:28 – “Do not be astonished at this; for the hour is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice.” 7:6 – Jesus said to them, “My time has not yet come, but your time is always here.” 7:8 – “Go to the festival yourselves. I am not going to this festival, for my time has not yet fully come.”  7:30 – Then they tried to arrest him, but no one laid hands on him, because his hour had not yet come. 8:20 – He spoke these words while he was teaching in the treasury of the temple, but no one arrested him, because his hour had not yet come. 12:23 – “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified.” 12:27 – “Now my soul is troubled. And what should I say—‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it is for this reason that I have come to this hour.” 2. Better,  v. 6-10 “Now when the Pharisees gathered to him, with some of the scribes who had come from Jerusalem, they saw that some of his disciples ate with hands that were defiled, that is, unwashed.  For the Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they wash their hands properly, holding to the tradition of the elders, and when they come from the marketplace, they do not eat unless they wash. And there are many other traditions that they observe, such as the washing of cups and pots and copper vessels and dining couches.  And the Pharisees and the scribes asked him, “Why do your disciples not walk according to the tradition of the elders, but eat with defiled hands?” And he said to them, “Well did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written, “This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me; in vain do they worship me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’  You leave the commandment of God and hold to the tradition of men.”  - Mark 7:1-8 3. Believe, v. 11 Believe refers to the conviction and trust to which a person is impelled by a certain inner and higher prerogative and law of soul.   4. Consequence, v. 12  “Then he began to denounce the cities where most of his mighty works had been done, because they didn’t repent.  Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes.  But I tell you, it will be more bearable on the day of judgment for Tyre and Sidon than for you.  And you, Capernaum, will you be exalted to heaven?  You will be brought down to Hades. For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day.  But I tell you that it will be more tolerable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom than for you.”        -Matthew 11:20-24

John 1:43-51

Oct 23, 2017 2244


John 1:43-51 1. There is texture among Jesus’ followers 2. Relationship means responsibility 3. We all have a Nazareth 4. God’s knowledge exceeds our understanding 5. Confirmation comes

2017 Men's Retreat - Session Three

Oct 21, 2017 4038


Pastor Chris Brooks speaks from Psalm 31 on committing our calling into God's hands.

2017 Men's Retreat - Session Two

Oct 21, 2017 2106


Pastor Chris Brooks speaks from Psalm 31 on committing our brokenness into God's hands.

2017 Men's Retreat - Session One

Oct 20, 2017 1614


Pastor Chris Brooks speaks from Psalm 31 on committing our spirits into God's hands.

When God Calls

Oct 15, 2017 2910


Galatians 1:11-24 1. God has a purpose for us 2. God will prepare us 3. God calls us to proclaim Jesus

How This All Got Started

Oct 8, 2017 3008


How This All Got Started John 1:35-42 1. A picture of discipleship 2. People talking about Jesus Three ways people talk about Jesus: biblical proclamation- John the Baptist personal testimony- Andrew personal invitation- Jesus 3. Jesus is confrontational “And they came to Capernaum. And when he was in the house he asked them, “What were you discussing on the way?” But they kept silent, for on the way they had argued with one another about who was the greatest. And he sat down and called the twelve. And he said to them, “If anyone would be first, he must be last of all and servant of all. And he took a child and put him in the midst of them, and taking him in his arms, he said to them, “Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me, and whoever receives me, receives not me but him who sent me.” -Mark 9:33-37 I would like to buy about three dollars worth of God please. Not too much—just enough to make me happy, but not so much that I become inconvenient to any of my friends. I don’t want so much God that I learn to really hate covetousness, lust and my addiction. I certainly don’t want so much that I start to love my enemies, cherish self-denial, and contemplate others before myself. I want ecstasy, not repentance; I want transcendence, not transformation. I prefer a warm womb to actually being born again. I would like to be cherished by some nice, forgiving, broad-minded people, but I myself prefer to be left alone. I want to be appreciated but not accountable, more socialization without transformation, please. I would like enough God to make my family secure and my children well behaved, but not so much that I find my ambitions redirected or my giving too greatly enlarged. I would like as much of this as I can have without my plans changing. I would like about three dollars worth of the God, please.” -adapted from original by Wilbur Rees 4. The power of grace Grace is the unconditional acceptance of God which brings us into relationship with and exposure to the capacity of God. “For the grace of God has appeared (Jesus), bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness (NO) and world passions, and to live (YES) self-controlled, upright and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people of this own possession who are zealous for good works.” -Titus 2:11-14 “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan demanded to have you, that he might sift you like wheat, but I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers.” Peter said to him, “Lord, I am ready to go with you both to prison and to death.” Jesus said, “I tell you, Peter, the rooster will not crow this day, until you deny three times that you know me.” -Luke 22:31-34 Personal Questions 1. Have I ever spent intentional time with a spiritually mature person for the purpose of becoming a disciple of Jesus? 2. How am I bearing witness to the reality of Christ right now? 3. Who or what am I avoiding that I should be confronting? 4. If God has the grace of acceptance and the power of transformation, what is keeping me from being changed?

Embracing the Possibilities

Oct 1, 2017 2752


John 1:29-34 1. God has done something about our sin, v. 29 “Blessed is the one whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.” -Psalm 32:1 “For since the law has but a shadow of the good things to come instead of the true form of these realities, it can never, by the same sacrifices that are continually offered every year, make perfect those who draw near. Otherwise, would they not have ceased to be offered, since the worshipers, having once been cleansed, would no longer have any consciousness of sins? But in these sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year. For it is impossible for the blood of bulls and goats to take away sins.” -Hebrews 10:1-4 What the law cannot do… a) the law can never make perfect b) under the law sacrifices never ceased to be offered c) under the law people never felt cleansed d) the law reminds people of their sins “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.” -Romans 8:1-4 What Jesus Christ makes possible… a) in Christ I am perfect (complete, not lacking) b) I don’t have to make sacrifices for my sin. c) in Christ I am clean d) sin is no longer necessary 2. God allows for progress, v. 31 3. Embrace the part you play 4. Learn to live in the reality, v. 31-33 “I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean from all your uncleannesses, and from all your idols I will cleanse you. 26 And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules.” -Ezekiel 36:25-27

Transformative Apologetics

Sep 27, 2017 5858


Special Guest Mary Jo Sharp speaks at our Midweek session on September 27, 2017. Links: Books: In Defense of the Bible: A Comprehensive Apologetic for the Authority of Scripture Why Do You Believe That? Defending the Faith: Apologetics in Women’s Ministry Come Let Reason: New Essays in Christian Apologetics

Why God Came Into The World And Why It Matters

Sep 24, 2017 3241


John 1:1-18 1.God comes at us in ways we recognize, v. 1 Four things about the people John is writing to... 1) Greeks believed that the universe was governed by this “order of nature” they called the Logos/Word. 2) A well lived live was defined as a life that conformed to this rational and moral order. 3) Life was about contemplating this order and trying to discern what it was all about. Lots of thinking, talking and discussion. 4) One of the reasons they put so much energy into contemplating this Logos is b/c they also thought of God as detached from the world regarding it’s struggles and fears so figuring this all out was up to them. The progression of the incarnation… * The Word existed… * The Word was with God… *The Word was God. 2. God is most recognizable in Jesus, v. 2 “This was why the Jews were seeking all the more to kill him, because not only was he breaking the Sabbath, but he was even calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.” -John 5:18 3. All of humanity is morally responsible to God, v. 3 4. God came to be received, v. 4-13 5. It is the nature of God to reveal Himself, v. 14-18

The Purpose of John

Sep 17, 2017 2260


John 20:30-31 1. Not everything but enough, v. 30 -John 21:25 2. Written with a purpose a) that Jesus is the Christ / Messiah A voice cries: “In the wilderness prepare the way of the Lord; make straight in the desert a highway for our God. Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together, for the mouth of the Lord has spoken.” -Isaiah 40:3-5 The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness, on them has light shone. You have multiplied the nation; you have increased its joy they rejoiced before you as with joy at the harvest, as they are glad when they divide the spoil. For the yoke of his burden and the staff for his shoulder; the rod of his oppressor, you have broken as on the day of Midian. For every boot of the tramping warrior in battle tumult and every garment rolled in blood will be burned as fuel for the fire. For to us a child is born, to us a son is given; and the government shall be upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and of peace there will be no end, on the throne of David and over his kingdom, to establish it and to uphold it with justice and with righteousness from this time forth and forevermore. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this.” -Isaiah 9:2-7 b) the Son of God 3. The goal of it all Zoe is the absolute fullness of life, both essential and ethical, which belongs to God; life real and genuine, a life active and vigorous, devoted to God, blessed, in the portion even in this world of those who put their trust in Christ, but after the resurrection to be consummated by new accessions, among them a more perfect body, and to last forever.

The Necessity Of A Right Rhythm

Sep 10, 2017 2456


Mark 6:30-52 1. Jesus models connection over capacity. v. 34 2. The right rhythm orients us towards what we value, v. 35-36 3. The right rhythm will eventually lead you to the impossible, v. 37-44 4. The right rhythm increases our faith, v. 45-52 A good rhythm consists of five things: a) activity- time I spend doing the necessary things b) ministry- time I spend doing the things I am called to do c) leisure- time I use for my enjoyment d) formation- time I take to be spiritually formed and conformed e) rest- the time I take to do nothing

Our God Of Promise And Practice

Sep 3, 2017 1566


Genesis 9:1-17 1. God always has a plan after disaster, v. 1 “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth.” 2. Think about the way you treat each other, v.6 To see what God was responded to look back to Genesis 6:5-8... “The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And the Lord regretted that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart. So the Lord said, 'I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, man and animals and creeping things and birds of the heavens, for I am sorry that I have made them.' But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.” 3. God keeps His promises, v. 8 This is the first of five covenants that God made with people in the Bible. a) Noah b) Abraham c) Moses d) David e) Christ “Now as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and after blessing it broke it and gave it to the disciples and said, “Take, eat: this is my body.” And he took a cup, and when he had given thanks he gave it to them, saying, “Drink of it, all of you, for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins. I tell you I will not drink again of this fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.” -Matthew 26:26-29

Living With Authority

Aug 20, 2017 2234


Text: 2 Corinthians 6:1-10 “A real Christian is an odd number anyway. He feel supreme love for One Whom he has never seen. Talks familiarly every day to Someone he cannot see. He expects to go to heaven on the virtue of Another, empties himself in order that he might be full, admits he is wrong so he can be declared right, and goes down in order to get up. He is strongest when he is weakest, richest when he is poorest, and is happiest when he feels worst. He dies so he can live, forsakes in order to have, and gives away so he can keep. He sees the invisible, hears the inaudible, and knows that which passes knowledge.” -A.W. Tozer -Matthew 7:28-29 1. Respond To Grace v. 1-3 2. Endure v. 4-6 a. Trials of a general nature -"Afflictions" or "troubles" are oppressive experiences that put various kinds of pressure on you. -"Hardships" are difficulties that you cannot diminish. -"Distresses" are situations from which you cannot escape. The Greek word pictures a person trapped in a confining place. b. Sufferings inflicted by other people -"Stripes" or "beatings" are punishments delivered with a whip or lash (cf. 11:24-25). -"Imprisonments" in Paul's day involved confinement and extreme discomfort (cf. 11:23). c. Hardships inflicted on self for the furtherance of the gospel -"Labors" or "hard work" encompasses all the strenuous activities of life including manual labor. -"Watchings" are "sleepless nights." -"Fastings" or "hunger" refers to missed meals. 3. Speak Truth v. 7-10

Tell The Story

Aug 14, 2017 2330


2 Corinthians 5:11-21 1. A CHANGE IN HOW WE SEE PEOPLE, v. 16 Ten factors that distinguish us according to the flesh... appearance ability age friends race gender work home family experience “For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” -Galatians 3:27-28 2. A CHANGE IN WHAT WE HOPE FOR PEOPLE, v. 17-19 “If anyone…” “ in Christ…” “...he/she is a new creation.” 3. A CHANGE IN HOW WE SEE OURSELVES, v. 20-21

Live The Story

Aug 6, 2017 2656


2 Corinthians 5:11-15 1. WE MUST BELIEVE WHAT IS MOST TRUE ABOUT OURSELVES * Non-Christian- no need to change * Christian- no means for change “Hospitality, therefore, means primarily the creation of a free space where the stranger can enter and become a friend instead of an enemy. Hospitality is not to change people, but to offer them space where change can take place.” -Henri Nouwen 2. WE MUST TURN FROM OUR FALSE-SELF TO OUR TRUE-SELF * false self - the person you had to become in order to survive up to this point. * true self- who you were created to be in Christ. 3. THIS IS NOT AN INVITATION TO SELF-HATRED BUT SELF-AWARENESS * Philippians 2:1-11 Some questions to ask yourself from this passage... a) are you participating with the Spirit? b) is your ambition singular or plural? c) when in your presence do people feel more significant than you? d) are you pursuing humility in the right way?

Know The Story

Jul 30, 2017 2568


The Story: Know the Story 2 Corinthians 5:11-15 Introductory thoughts... 1) Belief is possible 2) God is consequential “A real Christian is an odd number anyway. He feel supreme love for One Whom he has never seen. Talks familiarly every day to Someone he cannot see. He expects to go to heaven on the virtue of Another, empties himself in order that he might be full, admits he is wrong so he can be declared right, and goes down in order to get up. He is strongest when he is weakest, richest when he is poorest, and is happiest when he feels worst. He dies so he can live, forsakes in order to have, and gives away so he can keep. He sees the invisible, hears the inaudible, and knows that which passes knowledge.” -A.W. Tozer 3) The Cross is necessary The Story God is telling can be summarized with these words... 1. SEPARATION 2. MEDIATION “For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time.” -1 Timothy 2:5-6 3. RECONCILIATION vv. 16-21

Conversation With The Soul

Jul 23, 2017 2522


Psalm 103:1-14 1. I am created to worship God's holy name, v. 1. 2. Don't forget what the Lord has done, v. 2-5. -Deuteronomy 8:11-15 -Judges 2:10 His benefits: a. Forgives all your iniquity b. Heals are your diseases c. Redeems your life from the pit d. Crowns you with steadfast love and mercy e. Satisfies you with good 3. God’s character is always consistent, v. 8-14 4. God loves his children, v. 14

Life Song: I've Messed Up

Jul 16, 2017 2212


Psalm 32 THE BIBLE ASSUMES OUR SINFULNESS, v. 1-2 Why do you need God? How does the life, death and resurrection of Jesus make any sense? What is there to be redeemed from or for? Is there an objective moral standard by which all of life is evaluated? Is there such thing as truth and who decides? Does absolute truth exist? Three things you have to explain if you believe man is inherently good... a) the state of the world “We are more sinful and flawed in ourselves than we ever dared believe, yet at the very same time we are more loved and accepted in Jesus Christ than we ever dared hope for.” --Timothy Keller b) our sinful choices “For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing.” -Romans 7:15-19 c) Jesus Christ 2. THERE IS ALWAYS A CONSEQUENCE FOR SIN, v. 3-4 Two phrases to notice: 1) “when I kept silent” 2) “your hand was heavy upon me” 3. WE HAVE AN EXAMPLE TO FOLLOW, v. 5 a) “I’m sorry if you thought that.” b) “There must of been some sort of confusion.” c) “I’m not sure what happened.” d) “I don’t have a problem with it” Psalm 32:6-11

Life Song: Still A Carpenter

Jul 9, 2017 2018


Ps 104:1-10 1. God makes new things 2. Still discovering creation 3. God is willing to fix the broken -Ps 51:1-17 4. Repairs have rewards -2 Samuel 9 5. Scars give character 6. Everyone has scars and they tell a story of God’s restoration

Life Song: How To Celebrate To The Glory Of God

Jul 2, 2017 2644


Psalm 147 1. Celebration involves response, v. 1-6 a) God’s dealings with various people b) God’s connection to creation 2. Celebration involves thanksgiving, v. 7-11 Matthew 6:25-33 3. Celebration involves perspective, v. 12-20 Zechariah 2:1-5 “And the joy of Jerusalem was heard far away.” -Nehemiah 12:43

Life Song: How To Be Sad To The Glory of God

Jun 26, 2017 2734


Life Song How To Be Sad To the Glory of God Psalm 44 Some introductory thoughts on sadness... Sadness teaches us to sing in the minor key Sadness enlarges my perspective of God and myself Sadness rescues us from weightless “spirituality” Sadness deepens my faith Sadness moves me beyond my anger “We have traded in the language of lament for something far less. Namely, the language of grief management or psychology. When we trade biblical vocabulary for the vocabulary of the culture we are increasingly subject to losing our ability to hear this language.” -Keith Anderson 1. Learn to live in the trajectory not just the moment “The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.” -Martin Luther King 2. Trust God’s nature not just his activity 3. Don’t look for the lesson, listen for the invitation “You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me, yet you refuse to come to me that you may have life.” -John 5:39-40 4. Cultivate the habit of speaking honestly with God 5. Don’t think of this as historical but personal “What then shall we say these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died-more than that, who was raised- who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.” No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” -Romans 8:31–39

The Web of Worry

Jun 18, 2017 2352


Matthew 6:25-34

You Will Be My Witnesses

Jun 4, 2017 3268


Genesis 3:8-21 1. God brings hope to the hopeless, v. 15 -Romans 5:6 2. God brings community to the outcast, v. 8-9 -Acts 2:46-47 3. God redeems at great personal cost, v. 21 -Revelation 13:11 “We owe Christ to the world-to the least person and to the greatest person, to the richest person and to the poorest person, to the best person and to the worst person. We are in debt to the nations!” – David Platt


May 28, 2017 959


Hebrews 10:1-14 1. We are forgiven. 2. We are delivered 3. We are becoming. “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” -2 Corinthians 5:21

Better Together

May 21, 2017 2054


1 Corinthians 12.12-31 vv. 12-13 Unity of the Church vv. 14-20 Diversity of the Church vv. 21-26 Connectivity of the Church vv. 27-31 Functionality of the Church

Life Song: I Am Quiet On The Inside

May 14, 2017 2350


Psalm 131 1. Who am I prideful towards? Here are two ways to know if you are prideful/haughty: a) we are more aware of what everybody else is doing that we are of what we are becoming b) I cannot celebrate my success so I celebrate other people’s failure 2. What is beyond me? Three calibrating realities about the unknowable… a) Knowledge is one of the things that separates God from his creation “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” -Isaiah 55:8-9 “The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but the things that are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law.” - Deuteronomy 29:29 b) Not knowing is part of the human experience. “For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when the perfect comes the partial will pass away. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part: then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known. So now faith, hope and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.” - I Corinthians 13:9-13 c) Not knowing makes faith necessary. 3. How is my soul? Nine needs of the soul… 1) a keeper 2) a center 3) a future 4) to be with God 5) rest 6) freedom 7) blessing 8) satisfaction 9) gratitude 4. What is my hope in?

Jesus, You, and Me

May 7, 2017 2684


Colossians 1:15-28 I. Jesus is at the center of it all. 1. Jesus is God 2. Jesus is the agent of creation, v. 16 3. Jesus is the reason for which everything exists. 4. Jesus is before, v. 17-18 5. Jesus is fully God, v. 19-20 6. Jesus is reconciliation, v. 20 “All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; that is in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation.” -2 Corinthians 5:18-20 II. We need to understand people from God’s view. 1. Man is by nature, not choice, separated from God. 2. Separation from God manifests itself in how people think and what people do, v. 21 3. Reconciliation changes who you are. * holy- ‘haggis’ means “most holy thing, a saint.” * blameless- without fault * above reproach- unaccused 4. Continuing is a consequence of salvation. III. The minister bears a sobering responsibility. 1. Being a minister is not about privilege but responsibility 2. Ministers have a responsibility to suffer 3. Ministers have received something from God 4. Jesus is the object and your maturity is the goal

Life Song - God Is Merciful

Apr 30, 2017 2650


Psalm 40:1-10 1. Waiting for the Lord is a learned behavior, v. 1 “Our perspective on waiting is one of the stronger ways our society is out of stride with the biblical worldview.” -David Mathis “But they that wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.” -Isaiah 40:31 “From of old no one has heard or perceived by the ear, no eye has seen a God besides you, who acts for those who wait for him.” -Isaiah 64:4 2. God’s deliverance is evangelistic by nature, v. 3 3. Learn from your experiences, v. 4-5 4. Sin reveals how I relate to God, v. 6-8 Three ways people relate to God: a) sacrifices b) offerings c) obedience

Life Song - Worship: The Lyric of the Heart

Apr 23, 2017 2628


Psalm 95 1. Worship is about how we approach God’s presence, v. 1-2 2. Worship is motivated by God’s nature, v. 3-5 “The really wonderful moments of joy in this world are not the moments of self-satisfaction, but self-forgetfulness. Standing on the edge of the Grand Canyon and contemplating your own greatness is pathological. At such moments we are made for a magnificent joy that comes from outside ourselves. It is about the greatness of God, not the significance of man. God made man small and the universe big to say something about himself.” -John Piper, Don’t Waste Your Life Two reasons we must hold on to a God-sized view of God: a) to properly humble man b) to facilitate worship “Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand and marked off the heavens with a span, enclosed the dust of the earth in a measure and weighed the mountains in scales and the hills in a balance? Who has measured the Spirit of the Lord, or what man show him his counsel? Whom did he consult, and who made him understand? Who taught him the path of justice, and taught him knowledge, and showed him the way of understanding? Behold, the nations are like a drop from a bucket, and are accounted as the dust on the scales; behold, he takes up the coastlands like fine dust. Lebanon would not suffice for fuel, nor are its beasts enough for a burnt offering. All the nations are as nothing before him, they are accounted by him as less than nothing and emptiness. To whom then will you liken God, or what likeness compare with him?” -Isaiah 40:12-18 3. Worship involves intimacy, v. 6-7 “Now the tax collectors and sinners were all drawing near to hear him. And the Pharisees and the scribes grumbled, saying, “This man receives sinners and eats with them.” So he told them this parable…” 4. Worship starts and stops in your heart, v. 8-11

The Importance of Easter

Apr 16, 2017 3075


I Corinthians 15:1-11 1. The death of Jesus is real, v. 3 “And those who passed by derided him, wagging their heads and saying, “You who would destroy the temple and rebuild it in three days, save yourself! If you are the Son of God, come down from the cross.” So also the chief priest, with the scribes and elders mocked him, saying, “He saved others; he cannot save himself. He is the King of Israel; let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him. “He trusts in God; let God deliver him now, if he desires him. For he said, “I am the Son of God.” And the robbers who were crucified with him also reviled him in the same way.” - Matthew 27:39-44 2. The death of Jesus was necessary “For while we were still weak, at the right time christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person- though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die- but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” -Romans 5:6-8 3. The Bible is reliable, v. 4 4. The resurrection is verifiable, v. 5-9 a) Cephas b) the five hundred c) me *untimely born *least of the apostles *unworthy *I persecuted the church 5. Grace is available, v. 10-11 “Grace is the merciful kindness by which God, exerting His influence upon souls, turns them to Christ and then keeps, strengthens and increases them in the Christian faith.”

Better...At Obedience

Apr 9, 2017 2874


Matthew 21:1-11 1. The Big Picture existed long before I got here “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion! Shout aloud, O daughter of Jerusalem! Behold, your king is coming to you; righteous and having salvation is he, humble and mounted on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey. I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim and the war horse form Jerusalem; and the battle bow shall be cut off, and he shall speak peace to the nations; his rule shall be from sea to sea, and from the River to the ends of the earth.” -Zechariah 9:9-10 2. Hearing makes you responsible for doing, v. 2 3. Our obedience is affected by how we think of it, v. 2-6 4. Obedience is most needed in the public square, v. 7-9; 12-17 5. I can trust God for what is next, v. 10-11

Better...At Holding On To Your Hope

Apr 2, 2017 2584


1 Peter 1:3-9 1. Our Hope is sure, v. 3 2. Our Hope is steadfast, v. 4 3. Our Hope is secure, v. 5 4. Our Hope is refined, through suffering, v. 6-9

Better...At Hard Conversations

Mar 26, 2017 2565


Ephesians 4:17-32 1. The Bible holds the Christian to a higher standard, v. 17 “You have heard that it was said to those of old. You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgement. But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment, whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire. So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brothers has something against you, leave your gift there before the alter and go. First, be reconciled to your brother and then come and offer your gift. Come to terms quickly with your accuser while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison. Truly, I say to you, you will never get out until you have paid the last penny.” -Matthew 5:21-26 2. The Gospel is by nature non-conforming, v. 20-24 3 The Gospel is by nature clarifying, v. 25-32 How to have hard conversations… a) speak the truth b) be angry but also be intentional c) don’t create space for the devil d) talk to not just about e) don’t grieve the Spirit f) raise it up g) reflect back Questions to ask before having a hard conversation: 1. Am I clear on my biblical responsibility towards this person and this conversation? 2. Have I prayed about this, for this and for the other person? 3. What is my desired outcome? 4. Am I open to hearing as much as I am speaking? 5. Can we leave the conversations with a plan to move forward with our relationship?

Better...At Trust

Mar 19, 2017 2359


Genesis 22:1-14 1. GOD TESTS US FOR A PURPOSE, v. 1 Temptation has as it’s goal exposing your weakness or leading you into wrong action. The goal of testing is to prove the quality of something. 2. GOD UNDERSTANDS WHAT HE IS ASKING, v. 2 3. HE ALSO UNDERSTANDS THE MAGNITUDE OF WHAT HE IS DOING Genesis 13:14- “The Lord said to Abram, after Lot had separated from him, “Lift up your eyes and look from the place where you are, northward and southward and eastward and westward, for all the land that you se I will give to you and to your offspring forever.” Genesis 15:5- “And he brought him outside and said, “Look toward heaven, and number the stars, if you are able to number them.” Then he said to him, So shall your offspring be.” Exodus 11:2- “Speak now in the hearing of the people, that they ask, every man of his neighbor and every women of her neighbor for silver and gold jewelry.” Isaiah 7:3- “And the Lord said to Isaiah, “Go out to meet Ahaz you and Shear-jashub your son, at the end of the conduit of the upper pool on the highway to the Washer’s Field.” 4. OBEDIENCE IS AN ACT OF WORSHIP, v. 3-5 5. GOD TELLS A BIG STORY, v. 6-8 6. GOD IS STILL TELLING HIS STORY, v. 9-14

Better...At Integration

Mar 12, 2017 2621


2 Corinthians 4:1-6 a) inclusion- it is part of b) integration- it is inseparable from 1. “the mercy of God” * Ephesians 2:1-5 2. “we do not lose heart” 3. “to tamper with God’s word” 4. “those who are perishing” 5. “the god of this world” 6. “blinded the minds of unbelievers” 7. “but Jesus Christ as Lord” * I Thessalonians 4:2-8 8. “For God…” Genesis 1:1-3 2 Peter 1:19-21

Better...At Criticism

Mar 5, 2017 1951


2 Samuel 16:5-14 1. Criticism is a universal experience, v. 5 Criticism is defined as any judgment made about you by another, which declares that you fall short of a particular standard. -Alfred Poirier 2. Criticism is often times a veiled attempt at control, v. 5-6 3. Criticism is personal, v. 7-8 If you would like to get better at receiving criticism here are some questions to ask yourself… * How do I typically react to correction? * Do I pout when criticized or corrected? * What is my first response when someone says I’m wrong? * Am I overly noble when criticized? * How well do I take advice? * Are people able to approach me to correct me? * Am I teachable? * Do I harbor anger against the person who criticizes me? * Do I immediately seek to defend myself? * Can my spouse, parents, children, brothers, sisters or friends correct me? 4. Criticism is an opportunity for self-evaluation, v. 9-13 “Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips! Do not let my heart incline to any evil, to busy myself with wicked deeds in company with men who work iniquity, and let me not eat of their delicacies! Let a righteous man strike me- it is kindness; let him rebuke me- it is oil for my head; let my head not refuse it. Yet my prayer is continually against their evil deeds.” -Psalm 141:3-5 Two questions to ponder… 1) If I continually squirm under the criticism of others, how can I say I know and agree with the criticism of the cross? 2) If I typically justify myself, how can I say I know, love and cling to Gods justification of me through Christ’s cross? 5. Criticism reminds us of our humanity, v.14 v. 14- “And the king, and all the people who were with him, arrived weary at the Jordan. And there he refreshed himself.” “And the king…” “…and all the people who were with him…”- “…arrived weary at the Jordan.” “And there he refreshed himself."

Better...At Parenting, Part 2

Feb 26, 2017 2528


Deuteronomy 6:1-25 II. How Do We Do This? This section on ownership parenting vs. ambassador parenting is from the book Parenting by Ted Tripp Two types of parenting: 1) Ownership parenting- shaped and influenced by what parents want for their children and from their children 2) Ambassador parenting- shaped by what God wants to do through us in our children The difference in these two parenting styles manifest itself in four ways… 1. Identity- where you look to find your sense of who you are Owners- look to kids for identity, self-worth and affirmation of their parenting. Ambassador- not about what I need from you but based on what I understand about God, the Gospel truth and you * salvation culture vs. gospel culture 2. Work- what you define as the work you’ve been called to do as a parent Owners- have to turn their children into something and they rely on their resources to do it Ambassador- have to live as instruments in God’s hands in the lives of their children 3. Success- what you define success to be Owner- work towards specific horizontal indicators such as academic performance, social acceptance, popularity, athletics as evidence of parenting skill Ambassador- not about reaching goals but being usable and faithful tools in God’s hands because He alone is able to produce good things in your kids 4. Reputation- what tells people who you are and what you’re about Owner- children are trophies, they enjoy parading their kids when they do well but are deeply embarrassed when kids sin and often withdraw from relationships when this happens Ambassador- see misunderstanding and embarrassment as part of parenting and keep big Gospel goal of kids being “oaks of righteousness” in mind as they parents. God does the work and God gets the glory for who their kids become III. How Do We Become Parents God Works Through? 1. We ruthlessly and consistently return to the Gospel * Romans 1:16 2. We realize that we are raising a worshipper 3. We exercise discipline in our home IV. Four Questions Every Parent Should Ask Their Kids 1. Do you trust me? 2. Do you feel like you matter in this family? 3. What need are you trying to meet with this behavior? 4. What are you learning about yourself these days? Rest

Feb 19, 2017 2340


John 15:1-11 Fruit v. 1-2 Abide v. 4-11 Commandment. v.10 4 sabbath practices: (1) ceasing--not only from work but also from productivity, anxiety, worry, possessiveness, and so on (2) resting-- of the body as well as the mind, emotions, and spirit--a wholistic rest; (3) embracing--deliberately taking hold of Christian values, of our calling in life, of the wholeness God offers us; (4) feasting--celebrating God and his goodness in individual and corporate worship as well as feasting with beauty, music, food, affection, and social interaction.


Feb 13, 2017 1094


Ephesians 2:1-10

Better...At Parenting, Part 1

Feb 5, 2017 3241


Deuteronomy 6:1-25 1. Learning is for living, v. 1 2. Parenting is consequential, v. 2 3. You are to be monotheistic in a polytheistic culture, v. 4 4. You parent from the heart, v. 6 5. God intends that parents be the most spiritually formative people in a child’s life, v. 7 6. Prioritize the Word of God, v. 8 7. Remember that fullness leads to forgetfulness, v. 11-12 8. God does not have to prove Himself to you, v. 16 9. Have history with God not just church, v. 20-22 10. Don’t just come out but enter in, v. 23 Three questions parents have to answer… 1. Is God real? 2. What is He like? a) nature- who God is apart from us Exodus 34:5-8 b) character- who God is in relation to us Matthew 11:28-29 3. Does He really have a plan for my life? Psalm 139:16

Better...At Spiritual Conversations

Jan 29, 2017 2887


Acts 8:26-40 1. We need a sense of belonging * Acts 1:8 * Acts 8:1 2. We need to be tune din to what God is saying How God speaks to us today… 1) His word 2) prayer 3) spiritual authority 4) circumstance 3. We need to never assume 4. We need to ask good questions Good questions to ask include… 1) What did you mean by that? 2) How did you come to that conclusion? 3) Is this something that you live by? 4) Do you ever wonder if there is more than what you currently believe? 5) What are the consequences if you are wrong? 5. We need to be Gospel fluent The good news about Jesus includes… 1) He was the Son of God 2) His death on the cross was purposeful 3) His death was consequential 4) This forgiveness is experienced only in relationship with Jesus

Better...At Confidence in the Midst of Crisis

Jan 22, 2017 2520


This week there is a difference in the audio quality due to a technical error. We apologize for the inconvenience. Mark 5:1-20

Better...At Being Tired

Jan 15, 2017 2622


1 Kings 19:1-18 We are most spiritually vulnerable when… 1. When we are sacred, v. 3 What is your most consistent fear? 2. When we choose aloneness, v. 3-4 When you get scared do you move towards people or away from people? 3. When we lose perspective, v. 4 He does three deadly things that never give us the proper perspective… a) he evaluates b) he decides c) he compares Who do you compare yourself to? 4. When we are tired, v. 5 Some things to remember when you are tired… 1) God always has provision to get you to where he wants you to be, v. 5-8 2) Get where you can experience God, v. 8 Where is your Mt. Horeb- the place you meet God? 3) God still wants to speak to you, v. 9-14 4) God still has use for you in His plans, v. 15-17 How do you see God using you these days? 5) God will always have a remnant, v 18

Better...The Intimate Life

Jan 8, 2017 2598


2 Kings 6:8-23 1. Being used by God, v. 8-10 a) dissatisfaction with most things b) consistently angry c) rarely joyful 2. Known by the enemy, v. 11-14 3. Able to see what God is doing, v. 15-17 Isaiah 43:16-23 4. Prayers get answered, v. 18-19 5. Live outside of what comes natural, v.20-23


Jan 1, 2017 2366


Ephesians 1:15-23 Prayer is the actual, physical exertion of my thoughts, fears, emotions, understanding, sins, requests and willingness to and towards God. Forms of prayer… a) singing b) musing c) spoken 1. Growing knowledge, v. 17 “Knowing God is more than knowing about him; it is a matter of dealing with him as he opens up to you, and being dealt with by him as he takes knowledge of you. Knowing about him is a necessary precondition of trusting him, but the width of our knowledge about him is no gauge of the depth of our knowledge of him.” -J.I. Packer, Knowing God Is your relationship with God ruled by knowledge or necessity? 2. Intimate hope, v. 18 If your heart were enlightened today and you understood the hope to which God has called you what would you be more hopeful about? 3. Rich inheritance, v. 18 How do you think God sees you? 4. Great power, v. 19 Do you understand the power that is available to you as a Christian?

A Thrill of Hope: Christmas Day

Dec 25, 2016 2259


The Progressive Nature of the Incarnation I John 1:1-4 1. "That which was from the beginning…” 2. “…which we have heard…” * Genesis 3:8-10 * Ezekiel 43:2 * Job 37 3. “…which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life- the life was made manifest, and we have seen it, and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was made manifest to us- that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you…” * John 1:1-5 * John 1:14-18 4. “…so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. And we are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.”

A Thrill of Hope: Christmas Eve

Dec 24, 2016 1336


A Thrill of Hope: Love

Dec 18, 2016 2222


The Indicting Nature of the Love of God I John 3:1-18 1. Motivation, v. 1-3 2. Sin, v. 4-9 3. Standard, v. 10 4. Love, v. 11-16 5. Indifference, v. 17-18

A Thrill of Hope: Joy

Dec 11, 2016 2735


Luke 1:26-55 (ESV) Anawim = “the poor ones” - the “pious poor” or the “faithful poor.” “For He has looked on the humble estate of His servant.” (1:48) “Greetings, O favored one! The Lord is with you.” (1:28) Mary is “greatly troubled.” (1:29) Mary experienced the supernatural reality of joy joy despite things not going as planned. What happens to your joy level when things don’t go as planned? Control Escape Maybe God is using our detour, interruption, or problem to get our attention to draw us to Himself where He can infuse us with the joy that evades us when we try to control or escape? Mary’s Response: Trust “For nothing will be impossible with God.” Luke 1:37 Surrender “I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” Luke 1:38 Wonder, Joy, and Adoration “My soul magnifies the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior… Luke 1:46 How is this response possible? 1) God is with her (v. 28) 2) “Nothing is impossible with God.” (v. 37). Dad How do we access this joy that transcends circumstances? Prayer of surrender Find your “people” Celebrate Recovery slide Divorce Care slide Rejoice “Rejoice in the Lord always. Again, I say rejoice!” - Philippians 4:4

A Thrill of Hope: Peace

Dec 4, 2016 821


A Thrill of Hope: Hope

Nov 27, 2016 2600


Exodus: The Glory of What Matters

Nov 20, 2016 2054


Exodus 40:33-38 1. The tabernacle matters, v. 1-33 a) the tabernacle is a microcosm of creation. b) the tabernacle is a new creation c) the attention to detail reflects the created order of the universe d) the tabernacle should inform how we think about our bodies I Corinthians 6:18-20 If you thought of your body as the temple where God lived, what changes would you make to what you do with it? “Sometimes what the Bible does is change how we think about God, ourselves and the world we live in. Only after our thinking is properly adjusted can we behave in ways that reflect that thinking.” ?? How is the Bible adjusting the way you think? 2. Finishing matters, v.33 b What is unfinished in your life this year? 3. Glory matters, 34-38 “I believe the glory of God is the going public of his infinite worth. When we live for the glory of God it means feeling, thinking and doing whatever we do in such a way that it gives evidence of His supreme greatness. And when that goes public in creation, the heavens are telling the glory of God, and human beings are manifesting his glory, because we’re created in his image and we are trusting his promises so that we make him look gloriously trustworthy.” -John Piper How is God glorifying himself in you these days?

Exodus: God Moves In

Nov 13, 2016 2491


Exodus 36-39 Life “with God” is the ultimate destination. “All this was done just as the Lord commanded Moses.” Exodus 39:1, 7, 21, 26, 29, 31, 43 - God wanted His People to know that even more than the Promised Land, “with God” was their ultimate destination. - The most frequent promise of the Bible is “I will be with you.” “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:20 “God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and He will dwell with them. They will be His people, and God himself will be with them and be their God.” Revelation 21:3 - “With” God is the only way we flourish. “Then God said, “Let us make human beings in our image, to be like us.” Genesis 1:26 “For” God v. “With” God Dangers of allowing “for” God to trump “with” God… - “For” can rob us of the abundant life God has for us “with” Him here and now. - “For” can be unintentionally harmful to those we are trying to help or bless. “We are His workmanship, created for good works in Christ…” Ephesians 2:10 - “For” has the potential to crush us. “Better Life of Blessings” v. “Better Hope of Intimacy with the Father.” (The Pressure’s Off by Dr. Larry Crabb) PAPA Prayer: Present myself to God as I am – good, bad, or ugly. Attend to where I notice God’s presence or absence. Purge myself of whatever, at the moment, might be keeping me from noticing more of God. Approach God with abandon and confidence, wanting to just be with Him to know and enjoy Him, not to use Him to make my life better. Being an Image Bearer means that my identity, my joy, and my purpose are completely wrapped up in my relationship with God. Not the blessings of God, but God. “Our souls cannot rest until they find rest in Thee!” – St. Augustine “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in Him.” – John Piper “To know, enjoy, and glorify God!” - GPBC Mission Life “with God” is our ultimate destination! Reflect: What would it look like to shift from a “for” God life to a “with” God life? How will I lean into life “with” God this week?

Exodus: The Power of Everyone

Nov 6, 2016 2210


Exodus 35:4-36:7 1. Giving comes from the heart, v. 5 2 Corinthians 9:6-7 2. Be skilled at something, v. 10-19 3. God uses then to prepare us for now, v. 20-24 Here is a link to the video referenced in the sermon: 4. God uses women to accomplishes His purposes, v. 24 5. Giving is proportional, v. 27 6. God uses artisans and artists, v.30-2 a) called him b) filled him with the Spirit of God c) inspired him 7. The power of everyone, 36:2-7

Exodus: The Rhythm of Reconciliation

Oct 30, 2016 2160


Exodus 35:1-3 1. Remind 2. Ritual “A ritual protects common but essential elements of human life from reduction, degradation and exploitation. I cannot take charge of a ritual, I can only enter in — or not. Neither can I engage in a ritual by myself; others are involved. So a ritual, simply as ritual, prevents me from retaining any illusions that I am self-sufficient at the same time that it thrusts me into a life with others.” -Eugene Peterson Christ Plays In Ten Thousand Places Exodus 34:18-24 a) Feast of Unleavened Bread- deliverance b) Feast of Weeks- provision c) Feast of Ingathering- faithful The fruit of rituals... 1) Without some consistent rituals in our life we live at the mercy of our urgency and our appetites. 2) Rituals reorient our lives around what we value. 3) Rituals bridge the gap between what I desire and what I experience Some rituals for consideration… * kneeling * silence * solitude * friendship * service 3. Rest Dt. 5:15 Sabbath does two things: a) Reminds us that we are not slaves any more b) Everything doesn’t depend on me Question for reflection… 1. In your relationship with God, what are you in danger of forgetting? 2. What is a ritual you are willing to engage in every day, week, month and year? 3. What did you used to be a slave to?

Exodus: Moses, The Moon, And Why You Are Breathing

Oct 23, 2016 2210


Exodus 34:29-35 1. Not everything in the Bible is about us 2. Moses has been with a glorious God Psalm 8 3. Moses speaks with authority, v. 31-35 vv. 31-35 Hebrews 1:1-3 Questions for reflection… 1. In your worldview are you the moon or the sun? 2. Who’s name is majestic when it comes out of your mouth? 3. Who do you submit to? 4. Who or what has authority over you?

Exodus: You Can Trust Me

Oct 16, 2016 2587


Exodus 34:10-28 I can’t make my life work on my own! But as I fully trust God, I find help to experience the freedom and joy of the life I was created to live. What is a covenant? Two becoming one: “What is mine is yours and what is yours is mine.” Yahweh promises: Mercy, Forgiveness, Grace - v. 7 Miraculous Provision & Access to His Power - v. 10 Presence & Guidance: Will drive out the inhabitants of the Land He promised - v.11 God’s People promise: To be trust Yahweh implicitly, without reservation or rival – v. 14 In their context, trusting God will involve... v. 12, 15 – no treaties. v. 13-17 – tear down pagan altars and idols. v. 16 – no intermarrying outside the tribe. v. 19-20 – give God the first of everything you have. v. 23-24 - 3 times a year all the men leave camp to appear for God. v. 25-26 – no yeast; no cooking a goat in its mother’s milk. Then, 3 feasts that are past, present, & future reminders that Yahweh can be trusted. Past: Feast of Unleavened Bread – v. 18 Present: Sabbath – v. 21 Future: Festival of Harvest - v.22 All of these terms of the covenant speak to an exclusive relationship of trust. v. 28 – God writes this covenant in stone! What does this have to do with us? “Apart from Me, you can do nothing.” – John 15:5 “When I am weak, then I am strong.” - 2 Corinthians 12:10 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on our own understanding.” - Proverbs 3:5 Let’s ask ourselves… What is the evidence, or lack thereof, that I trust God? Where am I clinging to “By myself” or “I got this”? Where might I be “going along to get along”? What is keeping me from fully trusting God? What is one way I can trust God this week that I haven’t before? Good News: I can’t make my life work on my own! But as I fully trust God, I find help experience the freedom and joy of the life I was created to live.

From Faith To Love

Oct 9, 2016 2600


2 Peter 1:1-11

Exodus: The God of Another Chance

Oct 3, 2016 2934


Exodus 34:1-9 1. God’s word is authoritative, v. 1-5 Exodus 34:1 Exodus 34:27-28 2. God’s character is clear, v. 6-7 merciful gracious slow to anger loving faithful forgiving a) iniquity- more deeply rooted, means premeditated choice, continuing without repentance. Inquiry left unchecked less to a state of willful sin with no fear of God. Iniquity causes us to bend or twist the law of God in our hearts long before it expresses itself in our hands. b) transgression- refers to presumptuous sin, the choice to intentionally disobey; willful trespassing. c) sin- to miss the mark, dong wrong against God or a person, doing the opposite of what is right, failing to do what you know is right. Exodus 20:4-6 3. Worship is the proper response to God’s revealed character, v. 8

Exodus: Eavesdropping On Friends

Sep 25, 2016 2733


Exodus 33:12-23 1. A deeper knowledge of God, v. 13 The logic of intercession- a request that is based on a truth that God has already established in His word or a principle that He has demonstrated in His character. a) guidance…our need b) character…God’s nature 2. Redemptive leadership, v. 14 3. How God thinks about His people, v. 14-16 I Peter 2:9-12 I Peter 1:1-2 a) according to the foreknowledge of God b) in the sanctification of the Spirit c) for obedience to Jesus Christ 4. Goodness is enough Takeaways… 1. God is reason able 2. There is always more 3. We can accept being accepted. 4. We can see the basis of our salvation I Timothy 2:5-6

Exodus: God's Recalibrating Presence

Sep 18, 2016 2572


Exodus 33:1-11 NLT 1. God is coming closer! 2. God is not afraid of messes. 3. God doesn’t come all the way inside the camp. 4. God’s Presence Recalibrates Us! Psalm 73 NLT (The Finding Nemo Psalm) God’s Perspective A Mirror God’s presence has the power to not only recalibrate us but to transform us. What’s one way, outside my regularly scheduled programming this week, I will meet with God?

Women's Fall Gathering

Sep 11, 2016 3506


This is a recording of our Women's Pastor, Marcie McClendon, speaking to our women on Perseverance from Hebrews 12 and leading in a time of prayer.

Exodus: How Idolatry Happens

Sep 11, 2016 2593


Exodus 32:1-14 1. When we neglect our hearts Joshua 24:14-15 * The idol of approval- I want the approval of the people I’m talking to * The idol of control- using gossip as a way to manipulate/control others * The idol of reputation- I want to feel important so I put others down * The idol of recognition- talking about others gets people to notice me. * The idol of success-someone is succeeding-and I’m not- so I gossip about them * The idol of knowledge- talking about people is a way of showing I now more 2. When we experience God as slow Isaiah 55:8-9 3. When God is present but unmanageable Exodus 19:16-20 4. When we forget Two things we are prone to forget: a) the trajectory of our relationship b) the nature of God 5. When we fail to see the bigness of what God is doing

Communion Sept. 4, 2016

Sep 4, 2016 1109


The Jesus Way: Build Well

Aug 28, 2016 2528


Matthew 7:24-29 1. The Bible is self-validating, v. 24 2. You can hear and never listen Hearing- what someone says. Listening- what you do with what that person says. James 1:22-25 Galatians 5:1 3. The storm reveals what you trusted in, v. 25 4. No one chooses sand, v. 26 5. People are drawn to authority, v. 28-81

The Jesus Way: Undiluted Truth

Aug 21, 2016 2731


Matthew 7:13-23 Section I, v. 13-14 1. God wants an understanding not a following Luke 9:57-62 Two gates: wide…..easy…..destruction…..many narrow…..hard……..few 2. Many people are religiously lost Section II, v. 15-20 3. People have always distorted the truth 2 Timothy 4:1-5 4. Fruit is evidence of conversion Section III, v. 21-23 5. Don’t confuse doing with being known Luke 10:17-20

The Jesus Way: Progressive Praying

Aug 14, 2016 2568


Matthew 7:7-12 1. Prayer is about persistence Three postures of prayer: a) ask b) seek c) knock 2. Prayer is an expression of faith Luke 18:1-8 Isaiah 62:6-7 3. Prayer puts us in touch with the nature of God, v. 11 “If you then…” 4. Prayer exposes us to a bigger experience of good, v. 11 5. Prayer moves us beyond ourselves, v. 12 Matthew 5:17

The Jesus Way: Intentionality In Our Relationships

Aug 7, 2016 2250


Matthew 7:1-6 1. Not being judgmental will not get you to heaven, v. 1-2 Acts 17:29-31 2. Always start with yourself, v. 3-5 I Corinthians 9:24-27 1) Am I solid in the faith? 2) Is my lifestyle in obedience to Jesus Christ? 3) Am I committed to following God’s word? 4) Do I talk openly of spiritual truths? 5) Am I prayerfully optimistic about the people around me? 6) Am I joyful? 7) Does sin still bother me? 8) Am I growing spiritually? 9) Do I find comfort in the Gospel? 10) Is my faith sharing me? 3. Specks matter, v. 5 4. There is a time to be intentional with silence, v. 6

The Jesus Way: God's Got Us

Jul 31, 2016 2353


Matthew 6:19-34 The Connection between Worry and Treasures Matthew 6:19-21 What does Jesus say to us worriers? Matthew 6:25-34 Make the Kingdom of God my Primary Concern “Place top priority on identifying and involving yourself in what God is doing and in the kind of rightness he has. All else needed is provide.” (Dallas Willard paraphrase of Matthew 6:33) Identifying and Involving myself in what God is doing Matthew 6:31-33

The Jesus Way: Salt and Light

Jul 11, 2016 2089


"The best argument for Christianity is Christians: their joy, their certainty, their completeness. But the strongest argument against Christianity is also Christians - when they are somber and joyless, when they are self-righteous and smug, when they are narrow and repressive, then Christianity dies a thousand deaths.” Sheldon Van Aukin Matthew 5:13-16 (The Message) Being Salt & Light = Being with people as a conduit of God’s grace, healing, and wholeness (Shalom). Practice the Art of “Withness” Be Real

The Jesus Way: Everybody Gets To Play

Jul 6, 2016 2117


Matthew 5:1-12; 4:18-22 Hebrew Education System: Bet Sefer Bet Talmud Bet Midrash In a world whose way is earning, performance, and privilege, Jesus invites everyone to play on His team. Jesus believes you can be like Him!

Exodus: God Centered Thinking About the Sabbath

Jun 26, 2016 2320


Exodus 31:12-18 1. The Sabbath is a priority of God “Above all…” * Psalm 138:2 2. The Sabbath is a sign, v. 13 3. The Sabbath is holy, v. 14-15 4. The Sabbath reminds us that we are in a relationship, v. 16 Think of it like a triangle with three points… i. relate to ii. think about iii. experience 5. The Sabbath invites us into a rhythm, v. 17 “Learn to obey. Only he who obeys a rhythm superior to his own is free.” - Calvin Miller 6. The Sabbath is a command of God, v. 18 2 Timothy 3:16 2 Peter 1:16-21

Exodus: God Is In The Details

Jun 19, 2016 2382


Exodus 26 1. The accommodation of God 2. The otherness of God Psalm 15 3. It’s not always going to be this way 4. This is an indication of things to come

Exodus: Seeing What You Need To See

Jun 12, 2016 2201


Exodus 25:31-40 1. Look closely at the details v. 31 - Ex. 12:35-36 - 2 Sam. 7:1-11 2. The lampstand points to life v. 32-35 -Gen. 2:5-9 -Gen. 3:22-24 3. The lampstand holds light. v. 36-39 4. Look closely at the pattern. v. 40 -Rev. 21:22-22:5 a. access to God b. healing c. no more curse


Jun 5, 2016 982


Exodus: Sustaining Presence

May 29, 2016 2358


Exodus 25:23-30 The Bread of Presence Bread = Sustenance Presence = Face, the gateway to deep communion God’s presence nourishes and sustains us. Exodus 33:1-6 Psalm 16:11 Psalm 73:15-16 John 6:32-35 “Every moment we live without an awareness of God’s presence we are sleep walking.” John Ortberg Cover of The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence “The most holy and necessary practice in our spiritual life is the presence of God. That means finding constant pleasure in His divine company, speaking humbly and lovingly with Him in all seasons, at every moment, without limiting the conversation in any way”. Brother Lawrence Practicing the Presence of God “Sleep is God’s invention for giving us help He cannot get into us while we are awake.” George MacDonald “For Christians the beginning of the day should not be haunted by the various kinds of concerns they face during the day. The Lord stands above the new day, and all worry and all anxiety flee before Him. Therefore, in the early morning hours of the day, may our many thoughts and our many idle words be silent and may the first word and the first thought belong to the One to whom our whole life belongs.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer The Bread of Presence is available to us as the Bread of Life to nourish and sustain us!

Exodus: Start Here!

May 22, 2016 2681


Exodus 25:9-22 1. The ark symbolizes the presence of God 2. The ark reminds us of God’s holiness vv. 10-16 3. The ark reminds us of God’s faithfulness a) omer of manna- God will provide Exodos 16:32-33 b) Aaron’s staff- I have a plan for how this should go Numbers 16:8-10 Numbers 17:10 c) two stone tablets of Ten Commandments- God must be obeyed Exodus 24:3 4. The ark reminds us of God’s mercy vv. 17-21 Romans 3:21-25a

Exodus: How God Builds A Sanctuary

May 15, 2016 2184


Exodus 25:1-9 1. Obedience in the area of stewardship is something we should talk about in church, v. 2 Stewardship involves two things: a) tithe- b) offering- 2. Most people rarely give an offering because they don’t experience the blessing of tithing, v. 2 Priority of the first’s: a) firstborn- Exodus 13:1-2, 11-13 b) first fruits- Exodus 23:19 Proverbs 3:9-10 c) tithe- Malachi 3:6-12 Notice three things about this passage: 1) Notice that God does not change 2) Notice the word God uses to describe their behavior 3) Notice the two things God mentions 3. The motivation comes from your heart, v. 3 2 Corinthians 9:6-8

Exodus: The Framework of Worship

May 8, 2016 2593


Exodus 24:1-8 Covenant- a sacred relationship, established by God, in which God belongs to his people and his people belong to him. 1. Jesus is necessary, v. 1-4a I Timothy 2:5-7 2. Jesus is enough, v. 4b-8 Two kinds of sacrifices: a) whole burnt offering b) peace offering Hebrews 9:11-28 Hebrews 10:11-18 Hebrews 10:19-25

Exodus: Go Bless

May 1, 2016 2008


Genesis 12:1-3

Exodus: How God Relates To People

Apr 24, 2016 2761


Exodus 23:20-33 1. Guidance, v. 20-22 ? How often do you sense God’s active leadership in your life? 2. Worship, v. 23-27 Genesis 35:5 Isaiah 32:21 2 Corinthians 5:11 The terror of God is a biblically informed understanding of God’s nature, capacity and willingness. ?? Who is your “they” these days? 3. Longevity, v. 28 Psalm 139:13-18 ?? How does this shape how you think about tomorrow? If you could know how many days you had left would you want to know? And if you knew, what would it change about the way you live? 4. Big Picture, v. 28-31 I Kings 4:20-21

Exodus: The Posture of Your Fear

Apr 17, 2016 2778


1. There is a beautiful purpose to God’s law, v. 18-19 a) it reveals our inability to keep it b) it reminds us of the judgement to come c) it glaringly magnifies our need for a mediator d) it shows us our need for a Savior e) it is intended to increase our wonder at and worship of Jesus 2. There is a posture to our fear, v. 20 a) servile fear b) filial fear Jeremiah 29:11 Psalm 23 Psalm 34:4-11 Luke 12:22-32

Flourish: Learning Contentment

Apr 10, 2016 2198


Exodus 20:1-17 • Contentment is not being driven by wanting more. I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. Philippians 4:11-12 • Learning Contentment… Relentlessly establish realistic expectations. 
 Contentment = reality – expectations • Cultivate gratitude. "Give thanks to God the Father at all times and for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ." Ephesians 5:20 • Stake your life on that which can satisfy your soul. Therefore, do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Matthew 6:31-33

Flourish: Living In A Pinocchio Nation

Apr 3, 2016 2746


Exodus 20:1-16 1. A culture of the lie a) Lies subvert a fundamental requirement for civilization-trust. b) Lying is a reflection of a worldview c) Without truth you have no shared meaning 2. The anatomy of a lie * to escape accountability * to create a fantasy life/escape our mundane life * to avoid punishment * to get what we want * to mange people’s impression of us * to exploit others * to avoid awkward or unwanted conversations * to display our lack of trust in God 3. The consequence of lying * Romans 1:24-25 a) exchange b) consequence 4. We are people of the truth * Ephesians 4:11-16

The King: The Story of Easter

Mar 27, 2016 2611


I Corinthians 15:1-11 1. A Story worth repeating, v. 1 The Gospel is the good news that God saw how messed up the world was and how messed up I was and did something about it. Galatians 1:6-9 2. A Story worth responding to, v. 1-2 a) received b) stand c) saves you d) hold fast 3. A Story worth believing, v.11

The King: Kingdoms Collide

Mar 20, 2016 1965


Luke 19 Kingdom 1 – Rome Kingdom 2 – Israel’s Religious Leaders Kingdom 3 – King Jesus Terms Kingdom - living under the rule and reign of Jesus Repent - agreeing with God Believe - live like it’s true

Flourish: Waking Up To The Sin of Stealing

Mar 13, 2016 2582


1. Stealing communicates something to God. Genesis 12:1-4 I Timothy 6:17 2. Stealing confers something onto your children Exodus 20:5-6 3. Stealing robs people of the dignity of accomplishment Ephesians 4:28 4. Stealing takes many forms Malachi 3:8-10 “…until there is no more need.”

Flourish: The Insufficiency of Adultery

Mar 6, 2016 2602


Exodus 20:1-14 “The Christians idea of marriage is based on Christ’s words that a man and wife are to be regarded as a single organism...The male and the female were made to be combined together in pairs, not simply on a sexual level, but totally combined. The monstrosity of sexual intercourse outside marriage is that those who indulge in it are trying to isolate one kind of union, the sexual, from all the other kinds of union which were intended to go along with it and make up the total union. The Christian attitude does not mean that there is anything wrong with sexual pleasure, any more than the pleasure of eating. It means that you must not isolate that pleasure and try to get it by itself, any more than you ought to try to get the pleasures of taste without swallowing and digesting, by chewing things and spitting them out again.” -C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity 1. It violates God’s design for marriage Genesis 1:27-28 Proverbs 5:15-20 I Corinthains 7:3-5 2. It misrepresents God’s covenant with his Bride, the Church Ephesians 5:25-33 3. It is a sin against the Trinity I Thessalonians 4:2-8 I Corinthians 6:15-20 4. It has eternal consequences I Corinthians 6:9-11

Communion 2.28.16

Mar 3, 2016 910


Flourish: Redeem & Restore Freedom

Feb 21, 2016 1789


Exodus 20:1-13, Matthew 5:21-22, Psalm 14:1, Joshua 25:15, Psalms 14:1-4, Exodus 20:13, Matthew 11:28-30

Flourish: A Heavy Posture Towards Your Parents

Feb 14, 2016 2739


Exodus 20:1-12 1. Command a) doctrine b) discipline Two ways to think about discipline: 1) punitive 2) formative Hebrews 12:7-11 c) delight 2. Promise “If anyone fails to honor his parents, is there any he will spare?” -Augustine

Flourish: Living In The Rhythm of God

Jan 31, 2016 1994


Exodus 20:1-11 1. Remember Sabbath looks back at creation and redemption where God says two very important things: a) I rested b) I redeemed Deuteronomy 5:12-15 2. Keep Three things we can do to keep the sabbath: a) work hard all week Colossians 3:22-25 b) notice the direction of the Sabbath c) remember that God blessed the Sabbath day Isaiah 58:13-14

Flourish: The Fullness of God’s Name

Jan 24, 2016 2105


a) This is the only commandment with a sanction. b) God speaks in the third person c) God has a deep, abiding regard for His name. d) God’s name is HIs identity. Psalm 106:7-8 Psalm 138:2 Matthew 6:9 1. When we seek to define God by insufficient means Anthropomorphic- ascribing human form or attributes to a being or thing not human, especially to a deity. Isaiah 46:1-5 2. When we subject God to human capacities 3. In therapeutic worship Psalm 29:2 “kabod”- which means weight, burden 4. When we use God’s name for our purposes Acts 19:11-20 5. When we take God’s name and continue living for ours. Ezekiel 36:19-24

Flourish: The High Price of Idolatry

Jan 17, 2016 2132


Exodus 20:1-6 1. Idolatry changes the nature of the relationship * Dt. 4:9-18 2. Idolatry robs God of his majesty 3. Idolatry is an attempt to use God 4. Idolatry shapes the trajectory of your family * Isaiah 40:18-41

Flourish: The Prominence of God

Jan 10, 2016 2142


Exodus 20:1-3 1. Speaking is an expression of love, v. 1 2. Command is evidence of relationship, v. 2 3. The command is revealing, v. 3 a) demanding “The tragedy of modern faith is that we no longer are capable of being terrified. We aren’t afraid of God, we aren’t afraid of Jesus, we aren’t afraid of the Holy Spirit. As a result, we have ended up with a need-centered gospel that attracts thousands…but transforms no one. What happened to the bone-chilling, earth-shattering, gut-wrenching, knee-knocking, heart-stopping, life-changing fear that left us speechless, paralyzed and helpless? Why happened to those moments when you and I would open our Bibles and our hands started shaking because we were afraid of the Truth we might find there? William Barclay tells us that the word used in the bible for “truth” has three meanings- a word used to describe a wrestler grabbing an opponent by the throat; a word meaning to flay an animal; and a word used to describe the humiliation of a criminal who was paraded in front of a crowd with a dagger tied to his neck, its point under his chin so he could not put his head down. That is what the truth is really like! It grabs us by the throat, it flays us wide open, it forces us to look into the face of God. When is the last time you and I heard God’s Truth and were grabbed by the throat?” -Mike Yaconelli b) jealous c) monotheistic Isaiah 45:18-22 d) exclusive I Timothy 2:5-6

Exodus: Thinking Rightly About The Ten Commandments

Jan 3, 2016 2392


Exodus 20:1-21 1. We must understand God’s purpose for the Commandments 2. You cannot separate the commandments from the Story Deuteronomy 6:20-25 3. The commandments keep us from falling back into slavery 4. The commandments are a proposal Exodus 19:1-6

Exodus: Old Words For The New Year

Dec 30, 2015 2013


1. God leads us with sanctification in mind not satisfaction 2. God is not the problem “The ancient man approached God as the accused person approaches his judge. For the modern man the roles are reversed. He is the judge: God is in the dock. He is quite a kindly judge: if God should have reasonable defense for being the god who permits war, poverty and disease, he is ready to listen to it. The trial may even end in God’s acquittal. But the important thing is that Man is on the Bench and God is in the Dock.” -C.S. Lewis How we test God: a) when we refuse to wait for Him b) when we demand that He does the same thing the same way at the same time…every time! c) when we believe we know better d) when we doubt His character e) when we insist that He prove Himself by doing specific things 3. Sin has consequences John 2:23-25 Psalm 95 4. Presence without provision Psalm 131

Christmas Eve 2015.mp3

Dec 30, 2015 1266


Advent 4 - The Indicting Nature of Incarnational Love

Dec 29, 2015 2172


The Indicting Nature of Incarnational Love I John 4:7-12 1. Love is evidence of conversion, v. 7 The perfect tense in the Greek language refers to an action completed at a specific point of time in the past with results continuing into the present. . ______________________ 2. Love is demonstrated, v. 9-10 a) presence b) possibility c) propitiation Isaiah 53:4-6 3. Love makes us responsible, v. 11-12 I John 3:16-18

Advent 3- The Joy of a Little While

Dec 13, 2015 1888


John 16:16-24 1. Jesus knows what you want, v. 19 Matthew 6:7-8 • I knew you before you were born. As my hands formed you, I whispered purpose into your bones. I can’t not love you. (Psalm 139:1-6) • I am not like people. So please - don’t put human words in my mouth or apply human behaviors to my character. You will miss me altogether. (Isaiah 55:8) • I’ve never ignored you. I’ve been here all along. Protecting. Loving. Waiting. (Psalm 56:8) • As resourceful and brilliant as you are, you cannot save yourself. It’s by God’s grace and faith in Me alone that you are saved. (Ephesians 2:8-9) • The shame and guilt weighs you down has been taken care of on the cross. Your bill has been zeroed out. (John 3:16) • No matter what you’ve heard or what you’ve come to believe, there’s nothing that can separate you from my love. (Romans 8:38-39) • My love for you won’t walk out, fail, or ever come to an end. (Deuteronomy 31:8) • I love you. Let’s talk. (Jeremiah 29:13) 2. Joy is often born from sorrow and anguish, v. 21 3. This isn’t it, v. 23-24

Advent 2 - The Relational Nature of Peace

Dec 6, 2015 2386


John 14:25-31 1. Relationship, v. 25 Luke 14:31-33 2. Presence 3. Manner, v. 27 a) the world gives according to what they think you deserve. Christ gives according to what He knows you need. b) The world gives at little cost to themselves. Christ gives at great cost to Himself. c) The world gives out of obligation. Christ gives out of desire. 4. Context, v. 27 5. Believe, v. 30

Advent 1- The Sustaining Power of Hope

Dec 2, 2015 2106


Psalm 137 1. Hope is bigger than our circumstances, v. 1-4 Lamentations 2:15-16 2. Hope is a confession of remembrance, v. 5-6 Lamentations 3:1-24 3. Hope reminds us that God remembers, v. 7-9 “To sentimentalize something is to savor rather than to suffer the sadness of it.” -Frederick Blechner Micah 5:2

Exodus: How Do You Relate to God?

Nov 22, 2015 2638


Exodus 16:1-26 1. Does God always have to prove himself to you? 2. Is God provision or Provider? “go out and gather a days portion” “every day” vv. 31-35 Dt. 8:2-4 John 6:24-42 3. What do you think moves the heart of God? Luke 7- extravagant gratitude Luke 18- persistent faith Luke 21- real sacrifice

Exodus: How to Respond When We Get Rescued

Nov 15, 2015 1940


1. Remember and understand the rescue v. 1-3 a) It is powerful b) It is promised -Ex. 3:6 c) It is salvation. 2. Enjoy the rescue v. 4-12 -Hebrews 11:29 3. Look forward to the rescue v. 13-18 -Revelation 15:2-4

Exodus: Moving Forward

Nov 8, 2015 2318


Exodus 14:1-18 1. God has a motivation for everything He does, v. 1-4 Isaiah 43:6-7 2. God is doing more than you can see, v. 5-9 3. Faith is sometimes still and silent, v. 10-14 4. Ask the right question, v. 15-18 a) because we have a short memory b) because we settle c) our faith is a noun not a verb

Exodus: The Way of The Wilderness

Nov 1, 2015 2019


Exodus 13:17-22 God’s path is often not the most direct route Obstacles to trusting God’s Direction 1. Distrust 2. Resentment II. There is purpose in the wilderness What we see—While we strain to see over the next horizon, God sees the map from above—and so knows the best way to proceed. So the Lord often leads us according to the needs of our heart, not always according to its desires. What God sees—The Father sees the fear buried in our hearts that the quick and easy way would bring out. In our lives, we must realize that God’s goal for us—the best He could possibly give us—isn’t found in simply taking us from here to there. It isn’t even found in a new biblical insight. These come as but the means of His real goal—to know Him. - Wayne Stiles III. There is provision and direction in the wilderness Isaiah 41:4-10 MSG

Entering The Rest of God

Oct 25, 2015 986


Hebrews 3:7-19 1. Is there any part of your heart that is not believing the Gospel? 2. Are there any sinful appetites that need to be made to surrender to the truths of the Gospel? 3. Is there any area of your heart that has been hardened by the deceitfulness of sin? 4. Are you as spiritually confident now as when you began?

The Bigness of Why

Oct 20, 2015 2450


Exodus 11-12:14 What do the plagues teach us about God: a) He is Almighty b) He is jealous c) He is just d) He is merciful 1. The favor of God changes things, 11:3 2. We’re not all God’s children * Ezekiel 22:23-27 3. The rhythm of your life should be set by God, 12:1-2 4. God always has a why, 12:3-14

The Weight of Glory

Oct 11, 2015 1752


The full multimedia presentation available here -

Freedom from Fear

Oct 4, 2015 2073


Matthew 14:22-33 1. Fear is not from God 2. Fear is the reciprocal of Faith 3. Fear can be a Feeling, Fear is a Spirit Afraid of the Storm • When what is on the outside, begins to come into the inside. Afraid of the Solution • What would you do if you had no Fear?

Finding Truth in Consequences - Part 2

Sep 27, 2015 2223


1. This will get personal, Exodus 9:8-11 * I Corinthians 10:13 2. There is a difference in having sinned and being a sinner, Exodus 9:13-21 * vv. 27-35 Three purposes for the plagues: a) God’s power is unlimited and purposeful b) The plagues were part of God’s missionary purpose to glorify his name in all the earth. * Joshua 9:9 * I Samuel 4:5-8 c) God has control over creation 3. God defines obedience, Exodus 10:1-11 4. Who do you trust in now, Exodus 10:21-29

Finding Truth in Consequences

Sep 20, 2015 2472


1. God acts from a big agenda, 7:14-19 v. 17- “By this you shall know that I am the Lord: behold…” * Is God selfish or merciful? 2. Relief is a vain substitute for the truth, 8:1-11 * Has there ever been a time where you settled for relief instead of the truth? 3. My capacity exceeds yours, 8:16-19 4. God is a caring, personal God, 8:20-23 v. 22- “That you may know that I am the Lord in the midst of the earth.” * Is there an area of your life where it doesn’t feel like God is Lord over? 5. God makes a distinction, 9:1-7

Aaron Cotton Ordination

Sep 17, 2015 1735


The Ordination of Aaron Cotton on May 17, 2015.

Cultivating Christian thought through lyric, love, and insight.

Sep 13, 2015 2585


Since 1995, Ross has worked as a full-time musician. He also led our church in worship during an interim period for over a year. Ross is a lyrical craftsman and a very down-to-earth soul. Be refreshed as we hear his story and worship God together. Purchase Ross King's new album here -

Work and Faith

Sep 6, 2015 2729


Colossians 3:22-24 1. Is your motivation at work more internal or external?, v. 22 2. Who do you work for? v. 23 3. What does knowing this enable you do do at work? v. 24

How To Hear When You Don’t Want to Listen

Aug 30, 2015 2229


Exodus 6:1-9 v. 2- “I am the Lord” v. 6-8 There are seven “I will” statements in these verses that divide into four categories: a) liberation b) redemption c) adoption d) possession v. 9- “broken spirit” 1. Ask the practical 2. Go where you can see God 3. Spend time with people who restore your soul 4. Talk to yourself Psalm 103

Exodus - How to Handle Spiritual Resistance

Aug 23, 2015 2667


Exodus 5:1-9 1. Meet with God, v. 1 Exodus 33:7-11 2. Don’t expect lost people to act like Christians, v. 2 3. Tell the whole story, v. 3 a) there is something to believe b) this belief is specific and exclusive c) there is an action required d) there is a consequence of not believing

Exodus - The Power of Obedience

Aug 16, 2015 2976


Exodus 4:18-31 1. The power of sovereignty, v. 21 Exodus 9:13-21 Four things to keep in mind about God’s sovereignty: a) God’s sovereignty is never subjected to our circumstances b) God’s sovereignty is expressed in what he does and doesn’t do c) God is sovereign and merciful d) The purpose of sovereignty is worship 2. The power of sonship, v. 22-23 3. The power of the blood, v. 24-26 “The foundation of our justification- our acquittal, our forgiveness- is not a flimsy sentimentality in God, nor is it a shallow claim of human worth. It is the massive rock of God’s unswerving commitment to uphold the worth of his own glory, to promote the praise of his holy name and to vindicate his righteousness. The God-centeredness of God is the foundation of his grace to the ungodly. If God were not committed first to vindicate the worth of his own glory, there would be no gospel and no hope, for their would be no glorious God.” -John Piper * Genesis 17:9-14 4. The power of testimony, v. 27-31

Exodus - Our Excuses, God's Answers

Aug 9, 2015 2639


Exodus - Life’s Most Important Question

Aug 6, 2015 2777


1. Where “if” becomes “when”, v. 12-14 a) that God is self-existent and therefore not dependent on anything else for his own existence b) that God is the creator and sustainer of all that exists * Hebrews 1:1-3 c) that God is immutable in his being and character and thus is not in the process of becoming something different from what he is d) that God is eternal in his existence e) that God is personal 2. Why God distinguishes himself, v. 15 a) polytheism- the worship of or belief in multiple gods. b) pantheism- everything and everyone is God. c) syncretism- the mixing of different religions which results in a “new religion.” 3. That God knows the past, present and future, v. 16-22

Psalms - Happiness...Found

Jul 26, 2015 2241


Psalms - Why We Don't Skip Imprecatory Psalms

Jul 19, 2015 2411


Psalm 139:19-22 1. REMINDS US DIVINE JUSTICE IS COMING (VV. 19-20) Nehemiah 5:11 Ephesians 4:26 2. RELATIONSHIPS ARE PUT IN THE RIGHT ORDER (VV. 21-22) Proverbs 6:16-19

Psalms - Preparing to Meet Our God

Jul 12, 2015 2380


Psalm 92 Part One: Believers gather to give thanks, sing, and declare God’s Word (v. 1-4) -1 Cor. 14:15 -Exodus 34:5-8 Part Two: Learn how to deal with the culture shock of two kingdoms. (v. 7-9) -Col. 1:13 -2 Pet. 3:1-13 Part Three: Prepare to meet your God (v. 12-15) -Acts 2:42 a) The apostles’ teaching b) The fellowship c) The Lord’s Supper (the breaking of bread) d) The prayers -John 15:2-3

Psalms - Why We Should be Thankful for God’s Steadfast Love

Jul 5, 2015 2180


Psalm 118 1. God’s Love is Loyal v. 1-4 2. His Love Delivers v. 5-21 3. God’s Love Saves. v22-29

Exodus - How to be a Part of Changing the World

Jun 28, 2015 2318


Exodus 3:1-12 1. Stay curious, v. 1-4 The fruit of curiosity: a) promotes exploration and discovery b) produces questions c) produces persistence d) provides involvement 2. See your life as a blank check, v.4 3. Get a grasp of the nature of God, v. 5-9 Revelation 19:11-16 4. Look through the right lens, v. 11

Exodus - Posture Before Your Father

Jun 21, 2015 1931


Exodus 2:11-25 “Posture Before Your Father” 1. RUNNING v 11-15 2. Resting v 16-22 Obstacles a) We misunderstand the posture of rest b) We misunderstand God Benefits a) Trust in God’s provision b) Live in Blessing 3. Responding v 23-25

Exodus - The Smiling Hand of Providence

Jun 14, 2015 2432


1. God is always at work, v. 1-2 God moves in mysterious ways, His wonders to perform He plants His footsteps in the sea, And rides upon the storm Deep in unfathomable mines, Of never failing skill He treasures up His bright designs, And works His sovereign will Ye fearful saints, fresh courage take; The clouds ye so much dread Are big with mercy and shall break, In blessings on your head Judge not the Lord by feeble sense, But trust Him for His grace; Behind a frowning providence, He hides a smiling face * Deuteronomy 10:8-11 2. God works in your enemies hearts as well, v. 5-6 Psalm 109:1-20 How to pray for your enemies: a) remember that you were once God’s enemy b) ask yourself what you need to let die c) pray for mercy not just justice 3. God works in our lives in ways we don’t expect, v. 7-10 Hosea 3:5 Psalm 84:11 Romans 8:28 Philippians 1:6 I Peter 2:3 Titus 3:3-7 Psalm 23:6

Exodus - A Story of Promise, Provision & People

Jun 7, 2015 2212


Exodus 1:1-7 3. God keeps his promises. v. 5-7 Genesis 12:1-2 Exodus 1:8-14 2. Wherever you are headed God is already there, v. 6 1. This is a big story a) know the Story b) live in the Story c) tell the Story d) contextualize the Story

Exodus: Overview of Exodus

Jun 2, 2015 2389


Exodus 6:6-8 1. Freed from but delivered to 2. God exerts himself to make knowledge possible 3. God places a priority on worship 4. God is relational 5. God is holy 6. The law is necessary 7. Following God is a must Exodus 40:34-38

Communion 5.25.15

May 24, 2015 1229


Hebrews 10:14-25 1. Let us draw near, v. 22 2. Let us hold fast, v. 23 3. Let us consider, v. 25

The Day When Love Goes Cold

May 17, 2015 2157


1. JESUS IS IN CHARGE (v. 1) 2. THE CHRISTIAN LIFE INVOLVES WORK (V. 2-3, 6) A. Works, toil, patiently endurance (v. 2) B. Don’t not tolerate sin (v.2) C. Identify falsehood (v. 2) D. Keep God’s glory in mind (v. 3) E. Don’t grow weary in doing good (v. 3) 3. LOVE FOR GOD IS PRIMARY (v. 4) 4. RESTORATION IS MADE AVAILABLE (v. 5, 7)

Broken Together - Managing What Multiplies In Marriage

May 10, 2015 2211


Ephesians 6:1-4 1. Be intentional a) the goal- b) the definition- c) the task- 2. Be doctrinal 3. Play offense not defense Romans 1:16 4. Understand new birth 5. Be God-centered Symptoms of a God-centered family: a) a willingness to say “no” to children when it is in the child’s best interest b) a marriage in which dad and mom are united before their children c) a willingness to make your marriage more important than your children d) a willingness to be different

Broken Together - Marriage As a Vehicle of Acceptable Worship

May 3, 2015 2929


Hebrews 12:25-13:6 1. Honor the institution of marriage, v. 4 How do we honor marriage? a) Let what belongs to marriage stay in marriage. b) Submit to God’s definition of it. 2. Guard the marriage bed, v. 4 I Corinthians 6:9-20 3. Keep your lives free from the love of money, v. 5 I Timothy 6:5-10 4. Be content with what you have, v. 5

Broken Together - Gospel Imperatives for Marriage

Apr 26, 2015 1736


Ephesians 4:17-32 1. Have a former way of life, v. 22 2. Speak the truth, v. 25 3. Be angry, v. 26 4. Do not grieve the Holy Spirit, v. 30 5. Forgive as you’ve been forgiven, v. 32

Broken Together - Roles & Responsibilities in Marriage

Apr 19, 2015 2318


Ephesians 5:15-33 Introductory thoughts: a) Men and women have distinct roles in marriage b) Their roles are equal in value but different in function c) These roles were established before the Fall 1. Submission, v. 22 2. Headship, v. 23 a) a physical head, I Corinthians 11:7 b) source or origin, Colossians 1:18 c) a person with authority, Ephesians 1:22 What does headship mean? 1) Headship is more of a responsibility than a right. 2) Headship is the authority to serve. “If headship means ‘power’ in any sense, then it is power to care, not to crush; power to serve, not to dominate; power to facilitate self-fulfillment, not to frustrate or destroy it. And in all this the standard of the husband’s love is to be the cross of Christ, on which he surrendered himself even to death in his selfless love for his bride.” -John Stott 3) Headship is the opportunity to lead. 4) Headship nurtures and nourishes. 3. Love, v. 25-30 “Christ ‘loved’ the church and ‘gave himself’ for her, in order to ‘cleanse’ her, ‘sanctify’ her, and ultimately ‘present’ her to himself in full splendor and without any defect. In other words, his love and self-sacrifice were not an idle display, but purposeful. And his purpose was not to impose an alien identity upon the church, but to free her from the spots and wrinkles which mar her beauty and to display her in her true glory. The Christian husband is to have a similar concern. His headship will never be used to suppress his wife. He longs to see her liberated from everything which spoils her true feminine identity and growing towards that ‘glory’, that perfection of fulfilled personhood which will be the final destiny of all those whom Christ redeems. To this end Christ gave himself. To this end too the husband gives himself in love.” -John Stott 4. Respect, v.33 5. The Gospel, v. 32 “When God made man, then women and then brought them together in a relationship called marriage, he wasn’t simply rolling dice, drawing straws or flipping a coin. He was painting a picture. His intent from the start was to illustrate his love for people.” -David Platt

Broken Together - Thinking Biblically about Marriage

Apr 12, 2015 2513


Video shown can be found here - ------------------------- Genesis 2:15-25 1. Marriage is instituted by God. 2. Marriage is governed by God’s commands. Three regulations God puts on marriage: a) forbids homosexual marriage b) forbids polygamy c) forbids marriage to an unbeliever * Philippians 2:3-7 3. Marriage is designed for lasting joy. 4. Marriage is a covenant * Ecclesiastes 5:1-7 * Malachi 2:13-16 5. Marriage has a mission * Psalm 34:3

40 Days to the Cross - The What and the So What of Easter

Apr 5, 2015 2801


1. Resurrection means the life of Jesus is verifiable, v. 44 2. Resurrection means the death of Jesus was purposeful, v. 46 Mark 8:31-33 Mark 9:31 Mark 10:33-34 3. Resurrection makes forgiveness possible, v. 47 Hebrews 10:11 4. Resurrection means God is available, v. 49

40 Days to the Cross - What Do You See?

Mar 29, 2015 2431


Luke 19:28-44 1. Prophecy being fulfilled, v. 37 2. History being filled full Exodus 12:1-6 3. Our greatest need being addressed a) sufficient motivation John 12:27-28 b) sufficient sacrifice Romans 3:20-26 4. A compassionate God, v. 41-44

40 Days to the Cross - What to Do When Things Get Crazy

Mar 22, 2015 2178


Matthew 24:1-14 1. Focus on what is coming, not just what is happening, v. 8 Romans 8:18-22 2. This gets personal, v. 9 3. Don’t confuse pragmatism with Christianity, v. 12 4. Persevere, v. 13 a) Perseverance is not a condition for salvation but a consequence of salvation. b) This happens not because of my effort but because of my identity. c) My positional righteousness is bigger than my circumstances. d) Perseverance is a responsible expression of Christianity. 5. Proclaim the Gospel, v. 14

Forty Days to the Cross - Stay Ready

Mar 15, 2015 2313


Luke 21:25-38 1. Watch yourselves a) dissipation b) drunkenness c) cares of this life Mark 4:19 Ten things people worry about… 1. How am I going to pay my bills this month? 2. Will I ever find the right person for me? 3. What do I want to do with my life? 4. Am I spending enough time with my family? 5. Is my life making a difference? 6. What if I lost my house? 7. Could I lose my job? 8. What can I do to lose some weight? 9. Will I be able to take care of my parents as they age? 10. Will my marriage ever get better? 2. Stay awake Matthew 25:1-13 Matthew 26:40-41 3. Pray a) carve out some solitude b) immerse yourself in the Psalms c) Stay curious

40 Days to the Cross - The High Priestly Prayer

Mar 8, 2015 2434


John 17 I. God’s Glory demands obedience. (v 1-5, John 1:1-4, John 6:38, Philippians 2:3-11) “ There is only one way to glorify God, and that is to obey God.” - Dr. Christopher Blum II. Service is Selfless (v 6-19, ) • Keep them loyal and obedient to The Father (v.11) • Unity (v.11) • Fill them with Joy (v.13) • Faith through persecution (v.14) • Keep them from the Evil One (v.15) • Sustain their sojourn (v.15) • Sanctify Them set them apart for God’s service (v.17) • Know, understand, believe, and obey God’s Word (v.17) "Christianity was never meant to withdraw a man from life; it was meant to equip him better for life. Christianity does not offer us release from problems; it offers us a way to solve our problems. Christianity does not offer us an easy peace; it offers us a triumphant warfare. Christianity does not offer us a life in which troubles are escaped and evaded; it offers us a life in which troubles are faced and conquered. . . . The Christian must never desire to abandon the world; he must always desire to win the world.” - William Barclay III. Unite in Belief. (20-26)

40 Days to the Cross - The Gospel is Extravagant

Mar 1, 2015 2682


The Gospel Is Extravagant Mark 14:1-11 1. The goodness of God surpasses the badness of man II Corinthians 5:21 2. We live our understanding 3. Extravagant gospel, extravagant response Towards thinking extravagantly about the Gospel: a) The Gospel is the power of God b) The Gospel changes my view of God’s commands c) The Gospel reminds me that my righteous standing with God always holds firm regardless of my performance, because my standing is based solely on the work of Jesus and not mine. d) The Gospel guarantees my acceptance by God and the impossibility of condemnation. “The Gospel isn’t one class among many that you’ll attend during your life as a Christian – the gospel is the whole building that all the classes take place in! Rightly approached, all the topics you’ll study and focus on as a believer will be offered to you ‘within the walls’ of the glorious gospel.” – C.J . Mahaney "Terror accomplishes no real obedience. Suspense brings forth no fruit unto holiness. No gloomy uncertainty as to God’s favor can subdue one lust, or correct our crookedness of will. But the free pardon of the cross uproots sin, and withers all its branches. Only the certainty of love, forgiving love, can do this." — Horatius Bonar

Questions Christians Ask: Why Do We Observe Communion?

Feb 22, 2015 965


I Corinthians 11:23-32 1. Because it helps us to remember Jesus. 2. Because in it we look back as well as forward. a) “we proclaim the Lord’s death…” b) “until He comes” 3. Because life is meant to be examined.

Questions Christians Ask: What Can I Do?

Feb 15, 2015 2349


1. Walk in Love Ephesians 5:1-2 • Imitate God • Walk In Love to the level of Christ • Walk In Love as worship • Walking in Love is passive and active • Patience is not Tolerance “Tolerance Is the Attitude of Those Who Do Not Believe in Anything” - G.K. Chesterton “ Tolerance means at best indifference to everything” - G.K. Chesterton • Be Kind • Do not rejoice in wrongdoing • Rejoice in the Truth

Questions Christians Ask: Why Pray if God Already Knows?

Feb 8, 2015 2021


Acts 4:23-31 0. Because God knows everything 1. Because prayer is where we see the see the nature of God, v. 24-28 2. Because prayer reorients us around the nature of faith, v. 29 v. 13 3. Because prayer moves the heart of God, v. 31 * Exodus 32:1-14

Questions Christians Ask: How Do I Grow?

Feb 1, 2015 2269


Colossians 2:6-7 1. Start with regeneration Regeneration is an act of God in which he imparts new spiritual life to us. 2. Continue Colossians 3:5 I Timothy 6:11-12 Luke 13:24 2 Peter 1:5-8 Five things we need to exert ourselves in: a) our marriage b) the Word c) adversity d) Church e) formative friendships 2 Corinthians 7:2-7 3. Learn

Questions Christians Ask: What About the Holy Spirit?

Jan 25, 2015 2249


Luke 4:1-15 1. Full of the Spirit, v. 1 Acts 10:38 Romans 8:9-11 I Corinthians 6:19 Ephesians 5:15-21 Three things happen when we are full: a) joyful worship b) gratitude c) mutual submission 2. Led by the Spirit, v. 1 Galatians 5:16-25 3. In the Power of the Spirit, v. 14 Acts 1:8

Questions Christians Ask: Is the Bible Really Reliable?

Jan 18, 2015 2447


2 Timothy 3 1. Learning leads to believing, v. 14 * Luke 1:1-4 2. This is a personal process, v. 14 3. It’s never too early to start, v. 15 4. The Scriptures lead us to Jesus, v.14 John 5:39-40 5. The Bible was recorded by man but not written by man, v. 16 2 Peter 1:12-21 Things to remember: 1) People will always doubt the Bible. “No fact of contemporary Western life is more evident than its growing distrust of final truth and its implacable questioning of any sure word. -Carl. F. Henry 2) People start with their experiences 3) The Bible is self-authenticating…it has to be. 4) The Bible is sufficient John 20:30-31

Questions Christians Ask: What Happens When We Die?

Jan 11, 2015 2142


2 Corinthians 5:1-10 1. Our fate is sealed 2. We go immediately into God’s presence Hebrews 12:22-24 Implications of this truth: a) No such thing as purgatory b) No “soul sleep” 3. We will be conscious of where we are Revelation 6:9-11 Revelation 7:9-10 4. Our bodies will rise at the second coming.

Living in the When

Jan 4, 2015 2752


Matthew 6:1-18 1. Give Giving your money to help people who need it. 2. Pray Prayer is the intentional act of talking and listening to God. * Prayer is about submission * Prayer is relational * Prayer is a place of authenticity * Prayer is proportional Luke 18:9-14 3. Fast Fasting is the intentional avoidance of food for the purpose of focussing on the spiritual over the physical. * Fasting is a tangible form of self-denial. * Fasting reveals how often we use food pleasure to avoid discomfort * Reveals the satisfying nature of obedience * Increases spiritual leverage * Turns down the volume on the external and turns up the volume on the internal * Reveals what controls you

Far More: A New Year's Prayer

Dec 29, 2014 2771


Ephesians 3:14-21 1. Be strong (v.16) 2. Make room for Jesus (v.17) 3. Love regardless (v. 18-19a) 4. Be filled with fullness (v. 19b)

Christmas Eve 2014

Dec 24, 2014 924


Advent - The Responsibility of Love

Dec 21, 2014 1819


I John 4:7-12 1. Love is an experience, v. 7-8 a) "love"- means “to love dearly, to be contented at or with, to love without conditions.” b) “has been born of God” John 3:1-8 c) “and knows God” John 1:9-13 2. Love has been demonstrated, v. 9-10 3. Love is a responsibility, v. 11-12

Advent - The Greatness of Joy

Dec 14, 2014 2215


Luke 2:6-10 “A joyless Christianity will become an obstacle to believing the truth and will render the faith repulsive rather than attractive. However, a joyful Christianity is a most arresting advertisement for the transforming power of the Gospel. So all who hope to cut ice as witnesses for Christ will do well to study the art of joy as part of their spiritual preparation. The joy that gives Christians credibility also gives them energy.” -J.I. Packer 1. In the obedience Philippians 1:12-18 2. From the involvement Acts 5:27-42 3. In the expectation Philippians 1:21-23 I Thessalonians 4:13-18

Advent - A Peace That Overcomes

Dec 7, 2014 2572


John 16:29-33 1 .Peace Comes From God 2. True Peace Delivers Us

Advent - The Foundation of Advent Hope

Nov 30, 2014 2443


Hebrews 6:11-20 1. The promise of God, v. 13 2. The nature of God, v. 13-16 3. The consistency of God, v. 17 a) “more convincingly” b) “the heirs of his promise” c) “the unchangeable character of His purpose” d) "two unchangeable things” e) "it is impossible for God to lie” 4. The hope of God, v. 19

Seasons of Faith: Fall

Nov 23, 2014 1960


Psalm 16 1. Fall is where we reap what we’ve sown a) my choices matter b) doing good matters c) perseverane is a must d) we all have opportunities Galatians 6:7-10 Fall is when we realize three things: a) doing good matters b) perseverance is a must c) we all have opportunities 2. Fall is where we see how we’ve sown 2 Corinthians 9:6-8 3. Fall is where your faith is most on display Hebrews 6:7-8 4. Fall is for feasting Nehemiah 8:9-12 5. Fall is for gratitude Psalm 95:1-6 “I think we delight to praise what we enjoy because the praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment; it is its appointed consummation. It is not out of compliment that lovers keep on telling one another how beautiful they are; the delight is incomplete till it is expressed. It is frustrating to have discovered a new author and not to be able to tell anyone how good he is; to come suddenly, at the turn of the road, upon some mountain valley of unexpected grandeur and then to have to keep silent because the people with you care for it no more than for a tin can in the ditch; to hear a good joke and find no one to share it with. . . . The Scotch catechism says that man’s chief end is ‘to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.’ But we shall then know that these are the same thing. Fully to enjoy is to glorify. In commanding us to glorify Him, God is inviting us to enjoy Him.” -C.S. Lewis, Reflections on the Psalms

Seasons of Faith: Summer

Nov 16, 2014 1896


Seasons of Faith: Summer Psalm 19 1. Summer is a time of abundance Where is your “of course” these days? I Timothy 6:17 2. Summer is a foretaste of heaven How does thinking about heaven affect how you live on earth? Ecclesiastes 3:9-11 What is the difference between dissatisfaction and longing? 3. Summer is where we experience the by-product. 4. Summer is a time of first fruits Proverbs 10:5 I Timothy 6:18-19

Seasons of Faith: Spring

Nov 9, 2014 2620


Proverbs 3:1-12 1: Embrace the right Peace v. 1-2 2: Spring is a season of Work v. 3-6 3: There is Fruit in Commitment v. 7-10 4: Sometimes Spring Feels like Uz. v. 10-12

Seasons of Faith: Winter

Nov 2, 2014 2171


Psalm 88 Introductory thoughts on this series: a) The Christian life is seasonal by design b) Not every season is a fruit bearing season c) All of the seasons are necessary to produce fruit How do you know when you are in winter? a) People tell you things you know are true but it just irritates you b) You feel ashamed or embarrassed about what you are but you don’t have the energy to do anything about it. c) Life has lost it’s flavor d) Your issue is not knowing, it’s doing. 1. Dormancy 2. Death 3. Deep Feeding 4. Disciplines Spiritual disciplines are holy habits that help me order my life around what I value. Disciplines for winter: a) sing b) solitude c) silence

ENCOUNTER: When Life Takes on Water

Oct 26, 2014 1838


Luke 8:22-25 1. Remember God’s Word Psalm 135:5-21 2. Locate your faith 3. Grow in your knowledge of God.

ENCOUNTER: God The Seeker

Oct 19, 2014 2134


Luke 19:1-10 1. Money will not make me happy, v. 1-3 Three things about Zacchaeus: a) chief tax collector b) rich c) seeking 2. Jesus call us with friendship in mind, v. 5 3. Forgiveness must be scandalous, v. 7 4. What you do with your money is a reflection of what God has done in your heart, v. 8-9 Matthew 6:21 5. God is on a mission, v. 10

ENCOUNTER: The Call of Moses

Oct 12, 2014 2447


(Exodus 3:1-14) 1. DON’T MISS THE BURNING BUSH (vv. 1-4) 2. FREEDOM MEANS FREE (vv. 5-9) 3. THE GREATEST GIFT OF ALL – I AM (vv. 10-14)

ENCOUNTER: God's Passion for Authenticity

Oct 8, 2014 2018


Matthew 15:21-28 1. There is a spiritual dimension to life, v. 21-22 * Ephesians 4:30 * Isaiah 14:12-15 * Matthew 25:41 * I John 4:1-4 2. The silence of God is purposeful, v. 23a 3. Pay attention to the posture of your life, v. 23-25 4. Know what moves God, v. 26-28

ENCOUNTER: The Beauty of the Life Interrupted

Sep 28, 2014 2781


Acts 9:1-19 1. No one has done so much that God has given up on them, v. 1-2 2. A right knowledge of God changes everything, v. 3-5 * Exodus 34:7 * Jeremiah 9:23-24 3. God operates with the belief that He gets to tell us what to do, v. 6 4. Friends don’t always understand, v.7 5. God uses ordinary people, v. 10 6. Understand the nature of authority, v. 14 7. You are going to suffer, v. 15-16

Communion 9.21.14

Sep 21, 2014 705


ENCOUNTER: Forgiveness

Sep 14, 2014 2126


On May 11th, 2002, a drunk driver killed Renee's daughter, Meagan, and Meagan's friend, Lisa. The driver, Eric Smallridge, was sentenced to 22 years in prison. In the midst of grieving the loss of her daughter, Renee came to forgive Eric, and in turn Eric decided to make something positive out of his tragic mistake.

ENCOUNTER: The 39 Most Misunderstood Words in the Bible

Sep 7, 2014 2200


John 8:1-11 1. Jesus upholds the Law, v. 1-7 * Leviticus 20:10 * Matthew 7:1-5 * I Corinthians 5:9-13 2. Jesus applies the Law, v. 8-10 3. Jesus fulfills the Law, v. 11 * 2 Corinthians 5:21 * Romans 3:21-26

Mission: Work as Mission

Aug 31, 2014 2438


“And what we all need to hear is that what lies most on the heart of God is not whether we move from one job to the other, but whether in our present work we are enjoying God's promised presence and obeying his commands in the way we do our work.” - John Piper I. Genuine v. 9 II. Empathetic v.14-15 III. Honorable v. 16-18 IV. Good v 21

Mission: The Reconciling Nature of Mission

Aug 24, 2014 2306


2 Corinthians 5:11-21 1. The experience of reconciliation, v.18 * Colossians 2:6-15 2. The ministry of reconciliation, v. 18 3. The message of reconciliation, v. 19 “Redemption is much more than simply saving souls. It will ultimately entail the complete healing of creation, including social justice, the reunification of all humanity, and the end of physical decay and death. But even now it means bringing the health and coherence of Christ’s lordship back into every aspect of human life. The Christian church is to be a new society in which the world can see exhibited what family, business practices, race relations and all of life can be under the kingship of Jesus Christ.” -Tim Keller

Mission: The Danger of Mission Drift - Part 2

Aug 17, 2014 2313


1) Unless you have a proper definition of mission then you will succeed at a lot of things that are less than mission. The mission of the church is to go into the world and make disciples by declaring the gospel of Jesus Christ in the power of the Spirit and gathering these disciples into churches, that they might worship and obey Jesus Christ now and in eternity to the glory of God the Father. 2) Mission is not thinking in terms of addition but intentionality. 3) Mission requires motivation. a) There is something worse than death. b) There is something better than personal prosperity. c) There is not, nor will there ever be, anything better than heaven. d) There is not, nor will there ever be, anything more agonizing than hell. 2. BAPTIZE- Acts 2:36-41 1) Baptism implies repentance 2) Baptism is observed only after conversion 3) In the NT baptism was by immersion 4) Baptism symbolizes the union with Christ in his death, burial and resurrection. * Romans 6:3-4 3. TEACH * John 13:34-35 * John 17:20-21 * Luke 17:3-4 “ I have seen so much emotional blackmail in my ministry I am jealous to raise a warning against it. Emotional blackmail happens when a person equates his or her emotional pain with another person’s failure to love. They aren’t the same. A person may love well and the beloved still feel hurt, and use the hurt to blackmail the lover into admitting guilt her or she does not have. Emotional blackmail says, “If I feel hurt by you, you are guilty.” There is no defense. The hurt person has become God. His emotion has become judge and jury. Truth does not matter. All that matters is the sovereign sufferings of the aggrieved. It is above question. This emotional device is a great evil.” -John Piper

Mission: Living Intentionally with the Gospel Before Us

Aug 10, 2014 2187


1. What do I mean by living intentionally? 2. What does it look like? Numbers 13, 14 3. What difference does it make? a. Changes your perspective b. Enables public honesty c. Fosters perseverance 4. What is God saying you?

Mission: The Danger of Mission Drift

Aug 3, 2014 2392


Matthew 28:16-20 1. TEACH- “make disciples” The Order of Salvation • Election (God’s choice of people to be saved) • The gospel call (proclaiming the message of the gospel) • Regeneration (being born again) • Conversion (faith and repentance) • Justification (right legal standing) • Adoption (membership in God’s family) • Sanctification (right conduct of life) • Perseverance (remaining a Christian) • Death (going to be with the Lord) • Glorification (receiving a resurrection body) When making disciples you want to strike a glance of three things: a) honesty “I don’t think that anything has been done in the name of Christ and under the banner of Christianity that has proven more destructive to human personality, and hence counterproductive to the evangelistic enterprise, than the unchristian, uncouth strategy of attempting to make people aware of their lost and sinful condition.” -Robert Schuler b) urgency * Acts 13:36-44 c) joy-

Community: Community Service

Jul 27, 2014 1609


Galatians 5.13-14 You Have a Unique Design (Psalm 139.14) You Have a Priesthood (1 Peter 2.4-5) Our Design is for Us (Ephesians 4.11-16) “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” - Theodore Roosevelt

Community: The Four Commitments of Spiritual Friends

Jul 20, 2014 2886


John 15.12-17 Commitment One: Presence (1 Samuel 18.1-4) “True friendships are not relationships we control but adventures we enter into; indeed, friendship is more a surrender than a conquest, more a loss of control than a calculated plan. Friendship is a matter of mutual affection, of reciprocal love, care, and concern.” - Paul Wadell Proverbs 18.24 (NIV): “One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” Commitment Two: Honesty (Proverbs 27.5-6) Proverbs 24.26 Proverbs 17.9 (The Message): “Overlook an offense and bond a friendship; fasten on to a slight and—good-bye, friend!” Commitment Three: Encouragement (Hebrews 10.24-25) “Therefore, the Christian needs another Christian who speaks God’s Word to him. He needs him again and again when he becomes uncertain and discouraged, for by himself he cannot help himself without belying the truth. The Christ in his own heart is weaker than the Christ in the word of his brother; his own heart is uncertain, his brother’s is sure.” - Dietrich Bonhoeffer Commitment Four: Mutual Pursuit of Christ (2 Corinthians 6.14-16)

Community: The Growing Community

Jul 13, 2014 2798


The Growing Community Text: Mark 8.27-38 Growing Communities Journey Together (vv. 27-30) Growing Communities Value God’s Priorities (vv. 31-33) Colossians 3.5-17 “The great, great granddaddy of all sins is the denial of sin, the refusal to admit sin.” - Eugene Peterson, The Jesus Way 1 John 1.10, Proverbs 14.12, Proverbs 28.13, Matthew 3.8 Growing Communities Have the Right Destination (vv. 34-38)

Community: The Value of Community

Jul 6, 2014 2787


Matthew 18.20 Things that keep us from valuing community: Preference/Priority People Phones Phear Three Main Points to the Passage What is Community? (Matthew 18.20) 2.Why Do We Value Community? (Matthew 18.20a) John 15.4-6, 12 “Christianity means community in and through Jesus Christ.” - Dietrich Bonhoeffer Matthew 18.15-20 Genesis 1.26-27 Genesis 2.18 “God created us with a hunger for relationship - for relationship with him and with our fellow people. At our very core we are relational beings.” - Henry Cloud Genesis 2.25 3. One Caveat: We Value Christian Community (Matthew 18.20b) Genesis 3.6-13 1 Peter 5.8

The Gospel & Death

Jun 29, 2014 2556


Revelation 20:11-15 * Resolved, that I will live so as I shall wish I had done when I come to die. * Resolved to think much on all occasions of my own dying, and the common circumstances which attend to death. * Resolved, that I will live so, as I wish I had don when I come to die. * Resolved, that I will live just so as I can think I shall wish I had done, supposing I live to old age. * Resolved, I will act so as I think I shall judge would have been best, and most prudent, when I come into the future world. * Resolved to live with all my might while I do live. “Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil, and deliver all those who through fear of death were subject to lifelong slavery.” -Hebrews 2:14-15 1. Death is a reckoning, v. 11 * Acts 17:31 2. Death is an equalizer, v. 12 “We all have an appointment to sit down at a banquet of consequences.” -Robert Louis Stevenson 3. Death reveals what is recorded, v. 12-13 a) book of deeds b) book of life “Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, buy rejoice that your names are written in heaven.” -Luke 10:20 4. Death leads to life or death, v. 14-15

The Gospel & Homosexuality

Jun 22, 2014 2276


I Corinthians 6:9-11 Introductory thoughts: 1) Unrealized desires are not unique to homosexuals. 2) The Bible describes homosexual behavior as “unnatural.” 3) Our identity is not found in what we desire. 4) Context doesn’t determine morality. 5) Inconsistent application of Old Testament laws. 6) Homosexuality renders the cultural mandate an impossibility. 1. Homosexuality is not unique. 2. Homosexuality is a gospel issue. “For the essence of sin is man substituting himself for God, while the essence of salvation is God substituting himself for man. Man asserts himself against God and puts himself where only God deserves to be; God sacrifices himself for man and puts himself where only man deserves to be.” -John Stott Jude 1:3-4 3. Homosexuality is not inescapable.

The Gospel & Time

Jun 15, 2014 2774


Ephesians 5:11-20 Colossians 4:2-6 video found at -

The Gospel & Money

Jun 8, 2014 2547


1. Matthew 6:19-24 2. Luke 18:18-25 3. Luke 12:13-21 4. 2 Corinthians 9:6-11 Right use of money has two effects: a) Provides rewards of an eternal nature. b) Draws our affections into the Kingdom of God

The Gospel & Parenting

Jun 1, 2014 2254


Deuteronomy 6

Communion // 5.25.2014

May 25, 2014 1229


I Corinthians 11

The Living Truth

May 18, 2014 2453


2 Timothy 3 & 4

Marriage Matters: The Conflictual Nature of Marriage

May 11, 2014 2165


Song of Solomon 5

Marriage Matters: The Content of Marriage

May 4, 2014 2483


Ephesians 5:22-31

Marriage Matters: The Creation of Marriage

Apr 27, 2014 2994


Genesis 1:26-28

The Hope of Easter

Apr 20, 2014 2602


Luke 24:13-27

The One Story God Loves to Tell

Apr 13, 2014 2804


Luke 19

ROMANS: The Results of Romans

Apr 6, 2014 2927


Romans 16:25-27

ROMANS: Parting Shots

Mar 30, 2014 2540


Romans 16:17-24

ROMANS: The Power of Us

Mar 23, 2014 2455


Romans 16:1-16

ROMANS: The Fruit of a Long Obedience

Mar 16, 2014 2730


Romans 15:22-33

ROMANS: Ministry

Mar 9, 2014 2450


Romans 15:14-21

ROMANS: Seeing Christ

Mar 2, 2014 2540


Romans 15:7-13

ROMANS: How to Find Hope

Feb 23, 2014 1596


Romans 15:1-7 Find the interview of Lisa at

ROMANS: The Responsibility of Maturity

Feb 18, 2014 1909


Romans 14:13-23 Watch the video at

ROMANS: Why Thinking of Yourself is Godly

Feb 12, 2014 2702


Romans 14:1-12

ROMANS: The Motivating Nature of Then

Feb 5, 2014 2449


Romans 13:8-14

ROMANS: The Good of Submission

Jan 26, 2014 2698


Romans 13:1-7

ROMANS: The Busyness of Love

Jan 19, 2014 2716


Romans 12:9-21

ROMANS: The Clarifying Nature of Grace

Jan 12, 2014 2516


Romans 12:3-8

ROMANS: Why You Shouldn't Go to the Grand Canyon

Jan 5, 2014 2670


Romans 12:1-2

Get in the Game

Dec 29, 2013 2865


Hebrews 12:1-3

Advent: Love

Dec 22, 2013 2507


1 John 4:7-12

Advent: Finding Joy in the Second Advent

Dec 15, 2013 2470


Matthew 24:36-51

ADVENT: The Path to Peace

Dec 8, 2013 2553


Judges 6:11-24 Check out the video here:

ADVENT: The Hopeful Wait

Dec 1, 2013 2365


1. Waiting is part of God's plan. * Genesis 3:15 2. Waiting is the universal experience of God's people. * Genesis 7:1-5, 8:13 * Genesis 12:1 * Genesis 37:18-24 * Exodus 32:1 * Acts 1:4-7 * Galatians 4:4 3. Waiting connects the process to the promise. * Jeremiah 33:14-16 * Jeremiah 33:1 * Jeremiah 32:1-9

Communion 11.24.2013

Nov 24, 2013 963


Romans 11:33-36

ROMANS: Mercy Tree

Nov 17, 2013 2513


Romans 11:11-32 Check out the video at -

ROMANS: How to Keep Believing When it Seems Nobody Else Does

Nov 10, 2013 2428


Romans 11:1-10 Also check out the video at

ROMANS: Preach Christ

Nov 3, 2013 1931


Romans 10:14-21

ROMANS: The Simplicity of the Gospel

Oct 27, 2013 2566


Romans 10:5-13

ROMANS: Jesus Defines the Terms

Oct 20, 2013 2628


Romans 9:30 - Romans 10:4

ROMANS: Questions That Leave a Mark

Oct 13, 2013 3026


Romans 9:6-29

ROMANS: How to Not be Ashamed of the Gospel

Oct 6, 2013 3171


Romans 9:1-5

Naghmeh Abedini - Interview

Sep 29, 2013 3477


Marcie McClendon (Pastor Neil McClendon's wife) interviews Naghmeh and finds out more about her experiences and her background.

Suffering and the Sovereignty of God

Sep 29, 2013 2244


Naghmeh Abedini is the wife of imprisoned Christian Pastor Saeed Abedini, who is currently serving an eight year prison sentence in Iran because of his Christian faith. Naghmeh met Saeed on a trip to Tehran in 2002 and began assisting him in his ministry to house churches. They were married in 2004 and have two young children, six-year-old Rebekka and five-year-old Jacob. Since Saeed’s arrest in the summer of 2012, Naghmeh has continued to gather support for her husband by speaking before churches, the news media, U. S. Congress, and even the United Nations. Her tireless efforts have led to international publicity on Saeed’s case, involvement by national and international legislators, and a widespread prayer movement in the Christian community.

The Necessity of Enjoying God

Sep 22, 2013 3204


Matthew 13:44

Helping People Know God

Sep 15, 2013 2732


Mark 2:1-12

Communion // 9.8.2013

Sep 8, 2013 1072


1 Corinthians 11:23-32

The Glory of Work

Sep 1, 2013 2901


Colossians 3:23-24 We apologize for the poor audio quality. We had some technical difficulties during recording.

God is a Verb

Aug 25, 2013 2970


Exodus 2:23-25

Good News for Bad Times

Aug 18, 2013 2216


Psalm 32:1-11

PARABLES OF JESUS: The Parable of the Ten Minas

Aug 11, 2013 3252


Luke 19:11-27

PARABLES OF JESUS: Parable of the Wedding Feast

Aug 4, 2013 2551


Matthew 22:1-14

PARABLES OF JESUS: Parable of the Narrow Door

Jul 28, 2013 2564


Luke 13:22-30

PARABLES OF JESUS: Parable of the Laborers in the Vineyard

Jul 21, 2013 2385


Matthew 20:1-16

PARABLES OF JESUS: Parable of the Midnight Friend

Jul 14, 2013 2622


Luke 11:1-13

PARABLES OF JESUS: The Parable of Defilement

Jul 7, 2013 2239


Matthew 15:10-20


Jun 30, 2013 2704


Luke 5:37-38 Luke 5:27-30 Luke 5:33 Luke 6:1-2 Luke 6:6 Luke 5:39 Luke 5:12-13

PARABLES OF JESUS: Mustard Seed and Leaven

Jun 23, 2013 2307


Matthew 13:31-33


Jun 16, 2013 2467


Luke 15:11-32

PARABLES OF JESUS: The Good Samaritan

Jun 9, 2013 3026


Luke 10:25-37


Jun 2, 2013 2614


Luke 8:1-21

Communion // 5.26.2013

May 26, 2013 1632


I Corinthians 11:23-32

Beyond Comparison

May 19, 2013 2042


Colossians 1:13-20

ROMANS: How to Think About God

May 12, 2013 2115


Romans 8:31-39

ROMANS: The Necessity of a Big "Then"

May 5, 2013 2500


Romans 8:18-30

ROMANS: The Death that Produces Life

Apr 28, 2013 2843


Romans 8:12-17

ROMANS: Where Do We Find Assurance?

Apr 21, 2013 2018


ROMANS: The Beauty of God's Law

Apr 14, 2013 2106


Romans 7:7-13

ROMANS: Why the Rules Don't Work

Apr 7, 2013 2019


Romans 7:1-6

EASTER: The Implications of a Living Jesus

Mar 31, 2013 2094


John 20:1-10

A Prayer for Holy Week

Mar 24, 2013 2485


John 12:12-28

ROMANS: The Logic of Conversion

Mar 17, 2013 2254


Romans 6:15-23

ROMANS: Why Sin is Not Your Master

Mar 10, 2013 2412


Romans 6:1-14

ROMANS: The Reign of Grace

Mar 3, 2013 2646


Romans 5:12-21

Communion // 1.24.2013

Feb 24, 2013 713


I Corinthians 11

ROMANS: The Power of Glory

Feb 17, 2013 2395


Romans 5:1-11

ROMANS: Inheritance

Feb 13, 2013 2284


Romans 4:13-25

ROMANS: The Necessity of Digging

Feb 3, 2013 2464


Romans 4:1-12


Jan 27, 2013 2417


Genesis 12


Jan 20, 2013 2534


Matthew 28

CORE VALUES: Community

Jan 13, 2013 2497


Psalm 133:1-3 Mark 3:31-35 Acts 2:44-46 Galatians 3:26-28


Jan 6, 2013 2465


1 Corinthians 15

Now What?

Dec 30, 2012 2465


Luke 2:22-35

ADVENT: The Certainty of Advent

Dec 23, 2012 2817


Luke 1:26-28

ADVENT: Three Enduring Things About Mary's Savior

Dec 16, 2012 2930


Luke 1:46-56

ADVENT: The Second Advent

Dec 9, 2012 2377


1 Thessalonians 4:13 - 5:11

ADVENT: The Silent Voice of Anna

Dec 2, 2012 2659


Luke 2:36-38

ROMANS: Why God Uses Big Words

Nov 25, 2012 2976


Romans 3:21-31

Communion - Homily

Nov 18, 2012 832


Romans 3

ROMANS: Do Rule Followers Go to Heaven?

Nov 11, 2012 2746


Romans 2:17-29

ROMANS: Five things Every Hypocrite Should Know

Nov 4, 2012 3058


Romans 2:1-16

ROMANS: Why the Seasons Change

Oct 28, 2012 2370


Romans 1:18-32

ROMANS: A Shameless Gospel

Oct 23, 2012 2553


Romans 1:16-18

ROMANS: Faith, Gifts and the Gospel

Oct 14, 2012 2631


ROMANS: The Lens of Romans

Oct 7, 2012 2474


Romans 1:1-7

CHURCH: Exhortation

Sep 30, 2012 3189


Hebrews 10:19-31


Sep 23, 2012 2479


Galatians 5:1-6

CHURCH: Instruction

Sep 16, 2012 2642


Deuteronomy 6:1-9

CHURCH: The Purpose of the Church

Sep 9, 2012 2013


Ephesians 5:22-27

CHURCH: The Work of the Church

Sep 2, 2012 2816


Acts 2:36-41

CHURCH: The Reason for the Church

Aug 26, 2012 2645


Isaiah 45:1-25

BECOMING: Perseverance

Aug 19, 2012 1766


2 Timothy 4


Aug 12, 2012 2145


II Corinthians 5:16-21

BECOMING: Discipline

Aug 5, 2012 2050


I Corinthians 9

BECOMING: The Process of Progress

Jul 29, 2012 2643


BECOMING: The Truth - Change is Required

Jul 22, 2012 2778


John 3:1-5

The Distinguishing Nature of Obedience

Jul 15, 2012 2312


Deuteronomy 30

7.8.12 // Communion

Jul 8, 2012 1393


Isaiah 53

Ruth - The Epilogue

Jul 1, 2012 2179


Ruth 4:13-22

Ruth - The Sacred Marriage of Trust and Redemption

Jun 24, 2012 2716


Ruth 4:1-12

Ruth - How to Change Things

Jun 17, 2012 2568


Ruth Chapter 3

Ruth - Starting Over

Jun 10, 2012 2576


Ruth Chapter 2

Ruth - The Road

Jun 3, 2012 2821


Ruth 1:1-5

An Invitation to Remember

May 27, 2012 2518


Joshua 4:1-7

God Is...We Are

May 20, 2012 2397


Jeremiah 18:1-6

The Hope of the Resurrection

May 13, 2012 2280


I Peter Chapter 1

How the Resurrection Defines the Mission of the Church

May 6, 2012 3215


Matthew 28:16-20, Exodus 33

What the Resurrection Makes Us Believe

Apr 29, 2012 2552


Romans 1:1-4

What the Resurrection Helps Us to See

Apr 22, 2012 2213


I Corinthians 15: 19-28

Putting the Spirit back into Spiritual Life

Apr 15, 2012 2288


Romans 8:9-11

The Importance of the Resurrection

Apr 8, 2012 2942


Matthew 27:57 - 28:7

Lessons from the Last Week

Apr 1, 2012 2835


Mark 11:1-18

The Glory of Your Deepest Desire

Mar 25, 2012 2073


Mark 10:32-45

Trustworthy Sayings - Part 5

Mar 18, 2012 2892


I Timothy 1

Trustworthy Sayings - Part 4

Mar 11, 2012 2402


I Timothy 3

Trustworthy Sayings - Part 3

Mar 4, 2012 2159


I Timothy 4:1-11

Trustworthy Sayings - Part 2

Feb 26, 2012 2599


II Timothy 2

Trustworthy Sayings - Part 1

Feb 19, 2012 2567


Titus 3:1-11

Simple Faith - Just Believe

Feb 12, 2012 2735


Galatians 3:1-6

2.5.12 // Communion

Feb 5, 2012 1661


Ministry that Matters

Jan 29, 2012 2559


Biblical Community - "You Were Made for This"

Jan 22, 2012 2458


Genesis 1:26-28

Intimacy with God

Jan 15, 2012 2224


John 15:1-11

Distinctions of the Church

Jan 8, 2012 3260


1 Corinthians 14:6-12

The Insufficiency of Being Human

Jan 1, 2012 2541


1 Corinthians 3

The Christmas Gospel

Dec 25, 2011 2487


The Violent Path to Peace

Dec 18, 2011 2715


Why Joy?

Dec 11, 2011 2721


God's Love In Preparation

Dec 4, 2011 2426


Being People of the Wait

Nov 27, 2011 1384


The Permeating Nature of Prayer

Nov 20, 2011 2924


Corrosion, Corruption and the Call to Persevere

Nov 13, 2011 2555


The Reality of Every Christian

Nov 6, 2011 1286


Think About Your Life

Oct 30, 2011 2198


The Life of Wisdom

Oct 23, 2011 2266


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