October 4, 2020

The Power of a Heart of Humility

James 4:6-10

 

A.) The Resistance to Humility. (v. 6)

Fact: Pride is the arch-enemy of God and us!

Question: What is Pride?

#1. Pride is believing that we have achieved what God

      has done for us.

    #2. Pride is building my life around me and my wants.

    #3. Pride is Satan’s greatest weapon to destroy the

          worker and the work of God.

 

Question: Why did God (swiftly) punish the proud?

Answer:   Because pride was the sin that caused Satan

                 and a third of the angels to be cast out of
                 heaven. (Isa. 14:13-14)

 

Be humble or you’ll stumble.”

(D.L. Moody.)

 

B.) The Road to Humility. (v. 10)

1. Here are some ways to humble ourselves.
a.  Rejoice when you do not receive the credit you are
         due.
b. Admit it and ask for forgiveness when you are
    wrong.
c. Listen more to others instead of talking about
        yourself.
d. Never hold others back so that you can get ahead.

 

2. Humility and a passion for praise are a pair of
    characteristics which together indicate growth in
    grace.

 

C.) The Requirements of Humility. (v. 6-10)

#1.Submit yourselves to God”.   

#2.Resist the devil”.

#3.Draw nigh to God”.               

#4. “Cleanse your hands”.

    #5. “Purify your heart”.               

    #6. “Be afflicted and mourn”.

    #7. “Do all this in the sight of the Lord and He will

             lift you up.”

 

D.) The Reward of Humility.

Fact: There are 4 great rewards of humility.

#1. We become like Jesus. (Matthew 11:29)

#2. We are blessed beyond Measure. (Proverbs 22:4)

#3. We can maintain a grateful spirit. (Lam. 3:22)

#4. We have full fellowship with the Lord. (Isa. 57:15)

 

Question: How can you come near to God?

Answer:   James gives us five ways:

            #1. Submit to God.

            #2. Resist the devil.

            #3. Wash your hands and purify your heart.

            #4. Grieve, mourn and wail in sincere sorrow for

                  your sins.

#5. Humble yourself before the Lord and He will

      lift you up.

 

He gives Grace to the Humble.”

(James 4:6)

 

September 27, 2020

FEAR CAN BE OVERCOME

(Psalms 27:1-14)

 

A. God’s Provision. (vs. 1-4)

Question: What caused David to say, “In this will I be

                  confident” (v. 3)?

            #1.The Lord is my Light (v. 1)

            #2.The Lord is my Salvation” (v. 1)

            #3.The Lord is the Stronghold(v. 1)

 

Question: How does God’s strength becomes our

                  strength?

Answer:   Through absolute union and communion

                  with Jesus.

Fact:

David was denied access to the sanctuary (but)

David was determined to seek after God.

 

B. God’s Protection. vs. 5-6)

#1.Hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle

#2. “Set me high upon a rock”.

#3. “Then my head will be exalted above the

        enemies”.
 

Fact:

David is full of faith that God will complete His work.

 

Question: Is this Really True?

Answer:   Psalm 34:4, says:

“I sought the Lord and He heard me and

delivered me from all my fears.”

 

C.) God’s Power. (vs. 7-12)

Fact: God reveals here an important aspect to

          overcoming every fear.

            #1. That when the Lord speaks to us, we are to

                   immediately respond to Him.

            #2. That when the Lord prompts us, we are to

                  quickly obey.

            #3. That when the Lord draws us aside, we are to

                   yield to His impulse.

            #4. That when the Lord deals with us, we are to

                  “pause” and lift our hearts to Him.

 

Fact: Here are some Prayers that God still Answers: 

            #1.Teach Me” (v. 11)

            #2.Lead Me” (v. 11)

            #3.Deliver Me” (v. 12)

 

D.) God’s Patience. (vs. 13-14)

Fact: There are times when God calls upon us to act,

          and we must not delay. There are also times when

          God calls upon us to wait, so that He might act.

 

Question: Why are there times when God says “wait”?

Answer:    Because He has some work yet to do, either

                  in or for us to prepare us for something.

Question: What is it in (v. 13) that overcomes all fear?

Answer:    Faith.

Question: Where is this kind of Faith developed?

Answer:    Through patiently waiting upon God in

                   prayer.

 

“Sometimes the Lord calms the storm.

Sometimes He lets the storm rage

and calms His child.”

 

September 20, 2020

Dealing with Fear

Psalms 56:1-13

 

Today we examine the subject of fear. Many Old Testament scholars believe that this psalm should be titled:

 “The Silent Dove in Distant Places.”

 

 

We Serve a God Who Understands Our Fears. (vv. 1-4)

“Be merciful to me, O God, for men hotly pursue me; all day long they press their attack. My slanderers pursue me all day long; many are attacking me in their pride. When I am afraid, I will trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can mortal man do to me?”

1. Fear is a Natural response to constant opposition.
a. Holy fear.
b. Self-preserving fear.
c. Negative fear.

 

2. Faith is the Spiritual response to human fears.

 

Faith in God Requires an Active Commitment from Every Believer. (5-11)

“All day long they twist my words; they are always plotting to harm me. They conspire, they lurk, they watch my steps, eager to take my life. On no account let them escape; in your anger, O God, bring down the nations. Record my lament; list my tears on your scroll–are they not in your record? Then my enemies will turn back when I call for help. By this I will know that God is for me. In God, whose word I praise, in the Lord, whose word I praise–in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?”

 

1. Fear is one of Satan’s primary weapons.
                                                               (2 Tim. 1:5-7)
2. Fear must be identified before God can intervene.
                                                                 (Jer. 18:1-6)
3. Faith in the power of prayer is the path to deliverance.
                                                                    (Phil. 4:6)

 

Thanksgiving Is the Only Valid Way to Praise God for Victory over Fear. (vv. 12-13)

I am under vows to you, O God; I will present my thank offerings to you. For you have delivered me from death and my feet from stumbling, that I may walk before God in the light of life.”

 

1. Thanksgiving cultivates an attitude of invincibility.
2. Thanksgiving reminds our fears that God keeps His
     promises.

 

September 13, 2020

The Purpose of the Church

Matthew 22:37-40 & Matthew 28:19-20

 

Fact:

Jesus gave us these Great Scriptures so we can have a

Great Commitment to the Great Commandment and the

Great Commission so He can and will grow a Great Church.
 

Purpose #1: Love the Lord with all your heart.

                                                                        (Matt. 22:37)

          ~ We call this purpose, Worship.
 

 Fact: The church exists to worship God and You exist to

          worship God.

Fact: Sometimes we get so busy working for God (serving

          Him), we don’t have time to express our love to Him

          through our worship.

Fact: Throughout Scripture, we’re commanded to celebrate

          God’s presence by magnifying the Lord and exalting

          His name.

 

Purpose #2: Love your neighbor as yourself.

                                                                  (Matthew 22:38)

            ~ We call this purpose, Ministry.
 

Fact: The church exists to minister to people.

Fact: The purpose of the church is to do ministry

                                                                          (Eph. 4:12)
 

Purpose #3: Go and make Disciples”. (Matthew 28:19)

          ~ We call this purpose, Evangelism.
 

Fact: The church exists to communicate God’s Word.

Fact: It is every Christian’s responsibility to share the Good

          News of Jesus Christ to others.

Fact: The church has been given a mandate to reach

        everybody with the Good News of God’s saving grace.
 

Purpose #4: Baptizing them”. (Matthew 28:19)

          ~ We call this purpose, Fellowship.   
 

Fact: The purpose of baptizing is not the act of doing, but

          it’s the identification it brings. (Fellowship)

Fact: Baptism is not only a symbol of salvation; it is a

          symbol of fellowship.
 

Purpose #5: “Teaching them to obey”. (Matthew 28:20)

          ~ We call this purpose, Discipleship.
 

Fact: Discipleship is the process of helping people

          become more like Jesus Christ in their thoughts,

          feelings and actions. (Col. 1:28)

 

The Fact is:

It is God’s purpose for the church today to

follow His command and the Apostles examples to;

Edify, Encourage, Exalt, Equip and Evangelize.

 

September 6, 2020

Becoming People of Influence

(1 Thessalonians 1:4-10)

 

Each of us is an “influencer.” Our lives produce a type of fragrance that lingers with others, even after a brief encounter.

 

A.) The Principle of Time Alone with God. (Mark 1:21-35)

      #1. Prayer was a priority for Jesus.
 

Fact:

To be an influencer, you have to be influence first.

 

     #2. A solitary place is a state of mind that allows us to

           listen to God’s voice in spite of outward chaos.

 

B.) The Principle of Walking and Talking. (John 9:3-4)
 

Fact:

Jesus didn’t wait for a classroom setting to teach truth to His followers. He used every day events and interruptions to make truth memorable.

 

Fact:

When we intentionally embrace the principle of walking and talking, we point others to God and encourage their potential, whether they are friends or strangers.

 

C.) The Principle of Asking Question. (Luke 18:38,41-42)

#1. Jesus gave the man an opportunity to voice his   

      request and feel that someone deeply cared about

     his answer.

      #2. Jesus also provided an opportunity for the man to
            verbalize his belief.

 

D.) The Principle of Unconditional Love. (Jn. 8:4-5,7,11)

Fact:

Jesus practiced the kind of love that doesn’t come naturally.

 

    #1. When you help someone know they are valuable to

          God, their worth is validated, and they can begin the

          journey toward a relationship with Jesus.

   #2. A person’s actions may not always warrant your

         support, but their potential does!   

 

Fact:

You may be at risk for becoming a Christ-follower who cannot go through a day without influencing someone else’s life like He did.

 

August 30, 2020

Everyday Idols

Hosea 13:4

“But I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt.

You shall acknowledge no God but me, no Savior except me.”

 

Most people think of idol worship as bowing down to graven images as portrayed in the Old Testament. The focus of the message today is what competes with God for your worship.

 

What Is God’s View of Idolatry? (Jeremiah 2:28)

“Where then are the gods you made for yourselves? Let them come if they can save you when you are in trouble! For you have as many gods as you have towns, O Judah.”

 
1. Idolatry is the act of Worshiping anything other

        than God (Ezek. 14:3).

2. God created us with hearts that long to Worship
    (Jer. 14:10).
3. God commanded the Israelites to be Faithful in their

        worship (Exod. 20:2-5).

 

  1. God rejected His children’s Infidelity (Ezek. 6:11).

 

Why Should We Be Concerned About Idol Worship Today? (1 Corinthians 10:14)

“Therefore, my dear friends, flee from idolatry.”

 
1. Idolatry today takes on many Forms.
2. When we allow anything apart from God to Rule us,

        we have created an idol.

 

How Can I Be Set Free from the Enslavement of Idols?

1. Detect and Expose them (Heb. 12:1-2).

2. Repent and Reject them (Exod. 34:6-7).
3. Return to Fellowship with God (Hos. 14:1).
4. Guard against New idols (1 John 5:21).

 

“Now all has been heard; here is the conclusion of the matter: Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.”

(Ecclesiastes 12:13)

 

August 23, 2020

The Cross of Christ

1 Corinthians 1:10-18

 

Jesus took up the Cross in order that we might be pardoned from our sins. Now He asks us to share its shame, suffering, and sacrifice.

 

 

The Cross Is a Symbol of Our Faith.  (vs. 10-12)

1. The Cross represents History. (1 Pet. 2:21).
2. The Cross represents the Word. (1 Pet. 2:22-24).

 

The Cross Is a Symbol of God’s Power. (vs. 13-15)

1. The Cross Transforms. (Phil. 2:10-11)
2. The Cross Delivers. (Rom. 6:23).

3. The Cross Heals. (Isa. 53:4-5).

 

The Cross Is a Symbol of Church Unity. (vs. 16-17)

1. The Death of Christ (1 Cor. 15:3).
2. The Burial of Christ (1 Cor. 15:4a)
3. The Resurrection of Christ (1 Cor. 15:4b)

 

 

The Cross Is a Symbol of Personal Victory. (v. 18)

1. The Cross requires Change. (Luke 9:23).
2. The Cross requires Devotion. (Luke 14:27).

 

“The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven”

(Hebrews 1:3)

 

August 16, 2020

Spiritual Landmarks

Genesis 28:10-22

 

“When Jacob awoke from his sleep, he thought, ‘Surely

the Lord is in this place, and I was not aware of it.’”

 

A geographical spot often strikes a deep responsive chord in the human spirit. There is nothing more significant in our spiritual journey than the places where God met with us. The church altar has become a place for the family to gather and drive down a spiritual stake.

 

Noah Built the First Altar Recorded in the Bible. (Gen. 8:20-22)

1. Noah’s altar was a symbol of GRATITUDE.
2. Noah’s altar was a symbol of PROMISE.

 

“The only footprints on the sands of time, that will really last, are the ones made after knee-prints!”

            (C. W. Renwick)

 

 

Abraham’s Spiritual Journey Could Be Traced by the Altars He Built. (Gen. 12:7)

1. Abraham built an altar of FAITH (Gen. 12:7).
2. Abraham built an altar of SACRIFICE (Gen. 22:3-4).
3. Abraham built an altar for the FAMILY.

 

More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of.”

                        (Alfred Tennyson)

 

Jesus Christ Fulfilled the System of Altars and Sacrifices. 

(John 1:29)

1. Jesus is our LIVING altar. (1 John 1:7)
2. The altar today is a place for the EMPTY seeking heart.
                                                                                   (John 1:12)
* A place of REPENTANCE.
* A place of HEALING.
* A place of COMMUNION.
 

August 9, 2020

Keep Climbing

Psalm 123

Living a consecrated, holy life is hardly the popular route.

Psalm 123 reminds us to keep climbing regardless of the

pressure from the world to do otherwise.

 

Climb over Discouragement. (vv. 1-2)

“I lift up my eyes to you, to you whose throne is in heaven. As the eyes of slaves look to the hand of their master, as the eyes of a maid look to the hand of her mistress, so our eyes look to the Lord our God, till he shows us his mercy.”
 
1. We keep on climbing when we have a proper Perspective. (Rom. 8:31).
 
2. We keep on climbing when we have a meaningful Purpose. (Heb. 12:1-2).

 

“Our souls are not hungry for fame, comfort, wealth or power. Those rewards

create as many problems as they solve.Our souls are hungry for meaning.”

(Harold Kushner)

 

Climb upon the Mercies of God. (vv. 3-4)

“Have mercy on us, O Lord, have mercy on us, for we have endured much contempt. We have endured much ridicule from the proud, much contempt from the arrogant.”
 
1. We keep on climbing when we realize God’s power gives Endurance skills
                                                                                                       (1 Cor. 10:13).
2. We keep on climbing when we understand God’s power helps us to Overcome
    the enemy. (1 John 4:4)
 
3. We keep on climbing when we realize God’s Mercy is available (Rom. 12:1-2).
 

August  2, 2020

A Consecrated Life

Rom. 12:1-2

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God–this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is–his good, pleasing and perfect will.”

 

A Working Definition:

To consecrate is to set aside or dedicate for God’s service.

 

A Call to Renewed Thinking

    1. The motive for consecration is Love. (Rom. 3:21-24).

 

    2. The evidence of consecration is Gratitude. (Rom. 8:28-30).
  a. Enrich your appreciation for God’s Attributes. (Col. 3:16).
      b. Meditate on the Word of God (Ps. 119:64).
      c. Ask God to guide your Communication. (Col. 1:9).
      d. Share the good news of Salvation (Acts 1:8).

 

A Call to Generous Giving

    1. A Yielded heart is the voluntary response of a consecrated
        believer (Ps. 139:23).

 

    2. We cannot offer to the Lord that which costs us Nothing.

                                                                       (Hebrews 9:28)

 

A Call to Right Living

     1. Consecration involves the transformation of our Character
                                                                                 (Gal. 2:20).
     2. Consecration involves the regulation of our Conduct.

                                                                             (Titus 2:11-13).

 
 

July 26, 2020

Living like It’s Your Last Day

John 17:6-19

 

John 17 is the high priestly prayer of Jesus Christ. In my opinion, this passage is really the Lord’s Prayer, and it will illuminate the way we should live with eternity in view.
 

A.) A look at how Jesus spent His final days on Earth. (vv. 6-12)

1. He emphasized divine and unconditional love. (v. 12)
2. He focused on the amazing power of Grace. (Luke 22:32)
3. He discussed the eventual unity and triumph of the Church.

                                                                             (John 17:23-24)

4. He pointed out the path to Heaven. (John 14:6).

5. He highlighted His eternal Oneness with His disciples.

                                                                                               (John 14:16)

6. He Prayed for those who would follow. (John 17:15)
7. He reminded His followers that earth was not their Final address.                                                                                 (John 16:5)

 

B.) A look at how we should live our lives as if it were our Final day

      on Earth. (vv. 13-19)

1. We should live in complete Obedience to the Word of God.

                                                                                          (Rev. 22:6-7)

2. We should seek to go Deeper in our walk with God.  

                                                                                         (Rev. 22:8)

3. We should tell our loved ones about the Love of God.

                                                                                        (Rev. 20:10-11)

4. We should use our Gifts in ministry to others. (Rev. 22:12)
 
 

July 19, 2020

Why Do Christians Have Problems?

Matt. 13:19-22

“When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in his heart. This is the seed sown along the path. The one who received the seed that fell on rocky places is the man who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. But since he has no root, he lasts only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, he quickly falls away. The one who received the seed that fell among the thorns is the man who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke it, making it unfruitful. But the one who received the seed that fell on good soil is the man who hears the word and understands it. He produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.”

 

The problem of falling away is not new to Christianity.

In fact, it’s an age-old problem. Sadly, many who started

with Christ have backslidden.

 

Problems and Trials Come in Three Ways

  1. We cause the problem (2 Tim. 4:10).

 

  1. People cause problems (James 1:12).

 

  1. Circumstances create problems.

 

People React to Problems in Three Ways

  1. We Cover Up. (1 John 1:8).
  1. We Shut Up. (1 John 1:9).
  1. We Give Up. (Phil. 3:14).

 

Victory over Problems Is Achieved in Three Ways

  1. Instead of covering up, Grow Up! (Prov. 9:10).
  1. Instead of shutting up, Speak Up! (Gal. 6:2).
  1. Instead of giving up, Stand Up! (2 Cor. 4:16-18).

 

“Many of life’s failures occur
                                when we are close to success.”                                      (Stan Toler)