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Archive for October 2013

To Boldly Go Beyond

BEYOND 10/20/13

Our personal spiritual growth is directly tied to the expansion of God’s cause around the world. Paul understood that as believers grew spiritually it would result in growth both locally (what Paul calls our activity among you) and globally (the regions beyond). If we are truly growing spiritually, then it should result in reaching out to our neighbors, our friends, our family, our community.
And it will also result in a concern for and commitment to reach the regions beyond, the world.

I want us to grasp in our spirit today that like Paul, God has called all of us to go beyond – beyond our concern, beyond our culture, beyond our comfort zone.

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SERIES: THE SIGNS OF THE TIMES 10/13/13
There is an increasing interest in the theme of the end of the world in movies, with only four in 1950, to more than 75 in the period from 2000 to the present. Now most of these movies have little or no biblical basis, but Hollywood only produces what sells, and that indicates that our culture has an intensifying interest concerning the possibility of the end of the world.

I find it interesting that the converse seems to be true in the church. It would seem to me if the world is interested in the end times, the church ought to be preaching about the end times, so the world can hear God’s version instead of Hollywood’s version, but that is not the case.

The Bible promises over and over the return of Christ, and warns of the end times. This is not some story that Hollywood made up. This is the Word of God, and it will come to pass. Peter’s reason for writing His letters is to remind us what the prophets have said concerning the 2nd coming of Christ, and to stir us up to think about these things again. This morning we need to be reminded that Christ is coming, the end is near, and we need to be prepared.

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SERIES: BEWARE OF THE LITTLE THINGS 10/6/13

When we are impatient spiritually, it has costly results. Waiting on God is one of the hardest parts of the Christian life. It’s not that we don’t want God to guide us or to act on our behalf, it’s just that we want Him to do it in our timing not His; and in our way, not His. We are in a hurry, and we think God should be too.

Patience is listed among the fruit of the Spirit in Gal. 5:22. So impatience belongs to our sinful fleshly nature, and if we belong to Christ, our flesh must be crucified (Gal 5:24). We cannot excuse our impatience and say its just our personality. No, it is sinful. It belongs to our fleshly nature, and we need to fervently pray for God to help us to change.

Again and again the Bible exhorts us to be patient, and to wait on the Lord, and it warns us of the consequences of impatience. This is why we are going to take the time this morning to consider the subject of impatience.


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SERIES: BEWARE OF THE LITTLE THINGS 9/22/13

In Exodus chapters 3 and 4, when God calls Moses as the deliver of Israel, Moses gives God every excuse in the book why he can’t do what God is calling Him to do. As soon as God counters one excuse, Moses comes up with another one. But the underlying issue, the root of Moses’ reluctance, is found in the first three words of his question in Gen 3:11, “Who am I?” He had an insecurity issue. He did not know his own identity. He was so insecure, he didn’t even feel he could speak (4:10), and he had to have Aaron help him with the call that God had given him. Insecurity almost kept Moses from God’s destiny for His life.

Insecurity is another little fox, that spoils the vine. It is a subtle danger that can have great consequences. Today as we consider the problem of insecurity, and most of us struggle with it, we will find that the only answer for insecurity is knowing who we are in God.

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SERIES: BEWARE OF THE LITTLE THINGS 9/29/13
 A guy in the crowd asks Jesus to intervene in a family dispute over inheritance. Fighting over money can cause such contention in families.

He has not gotten his fair share, and he wants more. He expects Jesus to get involved and ensure that he gets his rightful portion, but Jesus does not become entangled in this family dispute over money, instead he gives a stern warning, Lk 12:15 – “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist of abundance of his possessions.”

Now Jesus is not teaching that he doesn’t want us to succeed or have money, or to save. In fact the man in Jesus story is a rich man. The problem is not that he is rich, the problem is his obsession with having more, it is his attitude toward money or possessions that Jesus warns against. So today we want to consider Jesus warning against greed, and how it applies to our lives.

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