Preaching Salvation through the Cross of Christ and deliverance through the Word of God Service Times:
Sunday School: 9:45 am
Morning Worship: 11:00 am
Bible Study: Wed Night 7:00 pm
Operating as usual
Who’s to Blame? Us or Adam?
PRAY OVER THIS:
“Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned—"
You may read this verse and respond, “Wait a minute, that’s not fair. Why should I get in trouble because of Adam? I had absolutely nothing to do with Adam and Adam had nothing to do with me.” But you don’t really believe that. Listen, if Adam had died without children, you wouldn’t be here. In reality, Adam had a lot to do with you. And you are in the image of Adam, you have the characteristics and the tendencies and the sinful disposition of Adam that you have inherited from him.
Adam did have something to do with you, but you still may say, “It’s not fair that I should go to Hell for Adam’s sin.” Well don’t worry about that, you’ve sinned enough yourself, haven’t you? We should be grateful that God deals with one man because, not only was it fair, but it was also wise and gracious. If we are condemned through Adam, one man, thank God we can be saved through one Man, Jesus. Think about it. It is wise and gracious that God allowed Adam to stand for us, so that Jesus, our resurrected Lord, might also stand for us.
Have you felt that it was unfair that you are condemned due to Adam’s sin?How often do you reflect on the reality that you have been shown grace through Jesus’ work?
Take time this week to reflect on your sin that would have condemned you apart from Adam’s individual sin. Spend time in prayer, thanking God that He was willing to save you based on the work of one Man, Jesus.
Want the Bad News?
PRAY OVER THIS:
“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
A preacher and his son were traveling down a street, and they saw a house that was on fire. They realized that there may be danger inside the house, and so they went and knocked on the door, but no one answered. Finally, they broke the door down and went in. They couldn’t find anybody in the house, but they took all the furniture out of the house and set the furniture outside the house while the fire department was on the way.
Later on, the preacher thought that was a great illustration, and decided to use it in his sermon. After he told the story, the people looked at him kind of strangely. When he got home, he did as preachers are prone to do and discussed the sermon with his wife. He said, “You know somehow I thought that was a good illustration, but it just fell flat.” She said, “I’ll tell you why. You forgot to tell them the house was on fire.”
It was the bad news that the house was on fire that made it good news that they saved the furniture. Often, we fail today to tell people the bad news that makes the Gospel message good news.
How have you experienced the reality that it is the bad news of sin and eternal separation from God that makes the Gospel good news?Why is it important to share both of these parts of the Gospel message?
Take some time today to reflect on the bad news of our sin that brought about the need for salvation. Thank God for the good news that He has met our need in Jesus.
Are You Standing by Faith?
PRAY OVER THIS:
“If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up.”
It is one thing to have faith to escape. It’s another thing to have faith to endure. It’s one thing to be sick and have faith to be healed. It’s another thing to be sick and not be healed but still praise God. That takes greater faith. It’s one thing to be delivered. It’s another thing to die by faith. There better be an “if not” clause in your contract with God. Our God is able to deliver us, but if He doesn’t deliver us, it’s not because He can't. You read in the New Testament where James was put in prison and Herod cut off his head. Then Peter was put in prison and God delivered Peter out of prison. Therefore, God could have delivered James, but He didn’t. Why? Well, you can ask Him when you get to Heaven. God is a sovereign God. He knows what is best, and He may not always deliver you from your trials, tribulations, and temptations. But if He doesn’t, what are you to do? Just stand. Just stand by faith.
When was a time you exhibited faith and saw God’s deliverance? When was a time you stood by faith but didn’t see your circumstances change?How do we glorify God in both situations, no matter the outcome?
Take time this week to read Hebrews 11, reflecting on how some of those who stood by faith were delivered and others were not. Nonetheless, all glorified God
Do You Know Your Father’s Heart?
PRAY OVER THIS:
“So he answered and said to his father, ‘Lo, these many years I have been serving you; I never transgressed your commandment at any time; and yet you never gave me a young goat, that I might make merry with my friends.’”
This elder brother was what we would have considered a model worker, and yet he did not know his father’s heart. He did not understand what motivated his father. I can almost hear his mind working. He’s thinking, “You know, I don’t understand what’s wrong with my dad. We’ve never had finer crops. Look at the cattle, how sleek and fat they are. Look at the barns, how freshly painted, how large and wonderful they are. Look at all the workers we have coming and going. Everything looks so fine. I don’t know what’s wrong with my father. My father just seems to sit there. He never seems to be completely satisfied, no matter how wonderful the farm is, no matter how beautiful everything is. My father seems to have a faraway look in his eyes. I don’t know what’s wrong with my father.”
I’ll tell you what was wrong with the father. He had a broken heart over a son that was away from home. I want to ask you a question. What do you think God is primarily concerned about? Do you know the heart of the Father? Or are you so wrapped up in all the things you can do for Him that you don’t know what’s on His heart and mind?
What are some examples from your life of ways you can constantly work for God but still miss what’s important to God?How might you spend time with God this week to learn what’s on His heart?
Take time this week in the Scripture where you aren’t “doing” anything for God but instead seeking just to be with Him and learn His heart.
Morning worship 10/3/21
Do We Need Another Pentecost?
PRAY OVER THIS:
“When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.”
The power at Pentecost was symbolized by wind and fire. The power was vocalized as the disciples were speaking in strange languages that they’d never learned. And then this power was actualized as seen in verse 4: “And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit.” This is the abiding miracle of Pentecost.
Sometimes people say we need another Pentecost. We should be careful. We couldn’t have another Pentecost without an indoor cyclone and tongues of fire sitting on every head. It’s not another Pentecost that we need. We don’t need another Pentecost any more than we need another Bethlehem or another Calvary. Bethlehem is God with us, Calvary is God for us, and Pentecost is God in us. We need to enjoy Bethlehem, enjoy Calvary, and enjoy Pentecost. Pentecost was a special day; it was the birthday of the Church. And the miracles that were given—the mighty rushing wind and the flames of fire—these things were illustrative of the mighty power, the filling of the Spirit of God.
What is true for believers today that was true for the believers at Pentecost?How do we neglect our access to the Holy Spirit within us when we only seek new signs and wonders of God’s power in our lives?
Make a list of the ways your life is impacted by having access to the Holy Spirit every day.
How to Tell How Much You Love God
PRAY OVER THIS:
“Now his older son was in the field. And as he came and drew near to the house, he heard music and dancing. So he called one of the servants and asked what these things meant. And he said to him, ‘Your brother has come, and because he has received him safe and sound, your father has killed the fatted calf.’ But he was angry and would not go in. Therefore his father came out and pleaded with him.”
How are you going to measure your love for God? One way to measure your love for the Father is by your love for your brother. You can’t see God the Father, but you can see your brother. In a very practical way, that which we can see is that which we can measure. In our church kitchen, and in many church kitchens, we have big coffee urns. They put the coffee on the inside, and on the outside, there’s a glass tube that runs up and down. And you can tell what’s on the inside by looking at that glass tube that’s transparent. As the liquid goes up and down in that glass tube, you know what’s on the inside.
Similarly, our love for our brother is that which can be seen, which is the absolute measurement of what is on the inside. Now you would think that this elder son who was out in the field—when he came home and saw that they had killed the fatted calf, they were having a party, they were dancing, and they were making merry—would have said, “Praise God. Hallelujah. Our prayers have been answered. My brother has come home. What a wonderful day. I wouldn’t blame my dear old dad if he overdid the festivities just a little bit.” But he wasn’t that way. As a matter of fact, he was a poor son because he was a poor brother.
Read John 13:34-35. How does this passage reflect the truth that our love for God is seen in our love for our Christian brothers and sisters?If someone measured your love for God solely by the way you love other Christians, how much evidence would they find of your love for God?
Take action this week to show love to Christian brothers and sisters in specific ways.
The Bible Will Not Be Destroyed
PRAY OVER THIS:
“But the word of the LORD endures forever.”
(1 Peter 1:25)
There was a Roman Emperor whose name was Diocletian; he hated the Word of God. He brought in all the copies of the Word of God that there were, burned them, and erected a monument. Then he proclaimed, “The name Christian is now extinguished.” Yet, Diocletian is gone, and we still have the Word of God. The Bible is always being attacked. Almost every week you’ll read something in some magazine or newspaper about why the Bible is wrong. You have cults who twist the Bible. You have those who water the Bible down. You have the humanists who ignore the Bible. You have so-called Christians, many of them, who claim to love it but don’t study it. There’s enough dust on some Bibles to write damnation with your fingertips. These hath God married and no man shall part, dust on the Bible and drought in the heart. But, in spite of all of that, the Bible goes on endless, timeless, dateless, and measureless. “Forever, O LORD, your word is settled in heaven” (Psalm 119:89). Don’t be afraid of the enemies of the Bible; they’ll not destroy the Bible.
What are some ways people might seek to dismiss or destroy the Bible?What are some ways you’ve seen the enduring power of the Bible?
Write out the ways the Bible speaks of itself, starting with 1 Peter 1:25.
God’s Power on Display
PRAY OVER THIS:
“…but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.”
(1 Corinthians 1:24)
How is Christ “the power of God and the wisdom of God”? The Jews wanted power and the Greeks wanted wisdom. Paul said, “Okay, you want wisdom? You want power? I’ll tell you where power is. I’ll tell you where wisdom is. It is in Christ crucified.” How is Christ crucified the power of God? Do you know that the greatest demonstration of power is not when God made the world and the universe and everything? The greatest demonstration of power is the salvation of the soul.
Now, you may not believe that. You may say, “Oh, that’s preacher talk.” But it’s true: the greatest power on Earth is the power that can save a poor, lost sinner. That’s the reason the Apostle Paul said, “I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is …” What? It is “the power of God unto salvation” (Romans 1:16). Oh, what mighty working miracle power! God created the worlds with a word. That’s all; He just spoke. But to save a soul, He had to hang His darling Son upon a tree, upon a cross. Dear friend, there is no greater power than this power that can transform a life.
Have you experienced the power of salvation? If not, how do you need to respond to God today?If so, how has the power of the Gospel brought about real change in your life?
Make a list of the ways your life is different after coming to know Christ than it was before you met Him.
Morning worship 9/26/21
Do You See the Bible’s Consistency?
PRAY OVER THIS:
“Open my eyes, that I may see wondrous things from Your law.”
If your eyes were closed, could you tell the difference between a trumpet and a trombone? Most of us could. The trumpet has a personality of its own—has a tone, a tenor, of its own. And the trombone has a characteristic, a personality, a tone, a temper of its own, right? Despite their different sounds, the same person could play each of these instruments.
Similarly, we pick up the Bible and see the personality, the temperament, the characteristic of the Apostle Paul. Or we pick it up and see the personality, the characteristic, the temperament of Simon Peter or others. But who is behind both of them? Almighty God! Human instruments wrote the Bible, but behind these human instruments was Almighty God. And so, as you read the Bible, it’s a very human Book. You see the prayers, the praises, the fears, the victories, the yearnings, and the frustrations of the men who wrote this Book. It’s marked by their personalities, yet God, in and through these men, was the One who was doing the speaking, the leading.
What are some ways you recognize the different personalities and characteristics of the authors of the Bible?How do you see consistency throughout the Bible despite these different personalities?
Take time today to read a chapter from two different New Testament books written by two different authors. Note the differences you see in writing style and tone. Also note the consistent message you find in both books.
Do You Refer to the Bible?
PRAY OVER THIS:
“…having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever.” (1 Peter 1:23)
A while back I had the joy of spending several hours with Dr. Billy Graham in his home in Montreat, North Carolina. We sat before a fire and talked, and it was one of the most enjoyable times that I’ve had. We had a cup of coffee, and I asked him to tell me again about that time in his life when he got the matter settled about the Word of God. Billy Graham told me how he as a youngster had heard all of the machinations and all of the protestations of the liberal theologians, and he was being bombarded on every side. He said, “I went alone in the mountains to get it settled. I took my Bible. I read it over and over and over again, and I went out there and I prayed to God. Finally, I knew I had to make a decision. And I said, ‘Lord God, I have preached this Bible already enough to see its mighty effect, its power in the lives of men. I may not understand everything, I may not be able to answer all of the arguments, but God, I believe that Book is Your Word, and I’m going to preach it that way.’”
I believe if there’s any secret to the ministry of Billy Graham it was that Billy was committed to preaching and saying, “The Bible says … the Bible says….” We must always return to what the Bible says. The inerrancy of the Word of God leads to the authority of the Word of God.
Are you more likely to rely on what the Bible says or on what you say? Why?
How would your life look different if you truly rely on what the Bible says?
Make a list today of things the Bible says. Contrast this with things you or others in the world might say according to human wisdom. Keep this list to refer to regularly.
|Wednesday||7pm - 8:30pm|
|Sunday||9:45am - 2pm|
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