Mark: Snapshots Of The Savior

  1. Would Jesus Call A Woman A 'Dog?'
    Sermon Audio

    Jesus And An 'Unworthy' Woman

    Do you think Jesus is predictable? Do you ever see him do anything in the gospels that makes you scratch your head? This is probably a good thing. A Jesus who never surprises is likely to be simply a Jesus in our heads, not the one revealed in Scripture. Take some time to read Mark 7:24-30. What did Jesus call this needy woman? Pray that God would show you a fresh picture of his son this morning.

  2. The Sign Language Of Jesus
    Sermon Audio

    Jesus heals a deaf and mute man

    Imagine a world where you couldn't hear or speak. Communication is something others take for granted but for you it is always out of reach. Such a man is described in our passage this morning. But when Jesus meets him, communication evolves from sight, to touch, to miracle! Take a moment and read Mark 7:31-37 to prepare for the message.

  3. Haven't We Already Read This?
    Sermon Audio

    The Feeding Of The 4,000

    This morning's passage might give you a sense of deja vu. Jesus feeds the four thousand. When he fed the five thousand, we saw that he is indeed the Creator/Provider. So why the repeat story? And why a story about feeding less people? Maybe the story would be worth telling if he fed twice as many, right? Take some time to read Mark 8:1-21 and prepare to be surprised.

  4. Are Those Trees Walking?
    Sermon Audio

    Jesus heals a blind man in stages

    In most of the movies and books we love we find ourselves always rooting for the hero. But because our heroes are all too human we can accept the occasional defeat. But what happens when we apply this idea to the hero of Mark's gospel? Could jesus ever be defeated? Would he ever find himself lacking the power to get something done? Take some time to read this surprising account in mark 8:22-26.

  5. But Who Do You Say That I Am?
    Sermon Audio

    The turning point of Mark's gospel

    Have you ever been in a social setting having pleasant, trivial conversation when the subject matter abruptly changed? Maybe someone brings up a controversial political topic, or confronts someone in the group aggressively. If you are like most people you look for the most immediate way to get in the shadows and fly under the radar. But sometimes you are the one put on the spot and you have to give an answer. In our text this morning, Jesus does something similar with his disciples. "Who do you say that I am?" It is not only the turning point for Mark's gospel; it is the turning point in a human life. Take some time to read Mark 8:27-38.

  6. The King's Speech
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The King On A Cross

    We return to the Gospel of Mark with our attention on the section upon which the whole book pivots. At the halfway point, we hear Peter's confession to Jesus, "You are the Christ!"  What the reader has seen for a full 8 chapters in the words of demons who are afraid of him, of wind and waves that obey him and of the crowds who are astonished by him is now crystalized on one man's lips- Jesus is the True King. Now Jesus takes the platform to speak- what will the king say about his own kinship and what he expects from his subjects? Not what anyone would have expected.

  7. Glory On The Mountain Top
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Transfiguration of Jesus

    Humanity has always been fascinated with secrets, things that lie beneath the surface and what's behind the curtain. Jesus looked like an ordinary man, no different than any Jewish man living in his day. Yet in our journey through Mark's gospel, it is obvious that there is more than meets the eye when considering just who this man is. Three of Jesus' followers had the privilege of getting a glimpse of his true glory on a mountain top. The site was so intense they could barely look at it, but as we stand with them today, let's ask God to help us bask in that beauty.

  8. 'Lord, Run To My Unbelief'
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Jesus heals a mute/deaf boy.

    What kind of faith does Jesus expect from his followers? Can a fallen sinner ever have perfect faith? Or are there only two options: faith and no faith?  Such questions hover around this amazing passage. What happens with a man with imperfect faith brings his request to the perfect Savior?

  9. A Dying Savior Has Humble Followers
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Christ calls for humility

    "Lord, it's hard to be humble when you're perfect in every way." Even though it's tongue and cheek, this old country song isn't far off the mark in indicting us for what actually lies in our heart. The truth is every person struggles with pride and a pervasive feeling that everyone else is somehow inferior. Jesus' original disciples were no exception. So Jesus takes them to school...again! A savior who dies for others has humble followers.

  10. Sin Is Serious, And Hell Is Real
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Take sin seriously

    Our culture doesn't take too much too seriously, does it? When it comes to the concept of "sin," it seems contemporary thinking views the whole idea as something old-fashioned, if not downright Victorian! This is why we need Jesus' teaching on sin more than ever. The Savior sees sins quite differently, and he insists that we see it as he does.

  11. Jesus On Divorce Pt. 1
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Jesus' teaching on divorce

    The subject of divorce is never just academic. Everyone has been touched by it in some way; at the very least we all know someone who has been touched by it. Jesus showed no fear at tackling this subject, but rather than just offering one of many opinions on the subject, he cuts right to the heart of the matter- God's glorious vision for marriage.

  12. Jesus On Divorce Pt. 2
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Having established that marriage is a life-long covenant between two people, we ask the hard question- ARE THERE EVERY ANY EXCEPTIONS. With a divorce rate so high and sexual sin so prevalent we must think through these issues quite carefully. We will spend some time in 1 Corinthians 7 as well for a fuller understanding on this subject.

  13. Receiving The Kingdom Like A Child
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Jesus blesses children

    In a passage that many overly sentimentalize- "Aww, isn't that sweet, Jesus blessing the little children!"- we come to one of the most powerful illustrations of salvation by grace found anywhere in the New Testament. What is Jesus telling us about little children? What is he telling us about ourselves?

  14. The Tragic Choice Of The Rich Young Ruler
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Rich Young Ruler

    We have all heard fisherman talk about "the one that got away." Usually it's a reference to the "ideal" catch that, for whatever reason, could not be brought into the boat. Today we encounter the most famous "one that got away" in the gospels. A young man- rich, sucessful and morally upright. He actually asks Jesus how he can have eternal life. Yet the conclusion is a letdown- he walks away sad. Why?

  15. Momma's Boys And The Kingdom Of God
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The bizarre request of James and John

    It's frustrating when other people don't get it, isn't it? Think of the father who patiently goes over Alegbra 2 word problems night after night with his never-understanding son. Or picture the piano teacher who can't get her student beyond the most basic scale. A stubborn inability to learn is almost maddening to a good instructor. No one must have experienced that irritation more than Jesus. When he predicts his death a third time, two of his most trusted followers are more concerned with their mom's plans than with Jesus' kingdom.

  16. Believing Is Seeing
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Blind Bartimaeus

    Today we come to Jesus' last healing miracle in the gospel of Mark. On the face of it, it is very straightforward. A blind beggar named Bartimaeus calls out to Jesus to get his sight back, and, true to form, Jesus heals him. But a closer look tells us that Mark is interested in teaching us much more about the nature of true sight.

  17. The Fickle Crowd And The Faithful King
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Jesus Entry Into Jerusalem

    Have you ever noticed how many epic stories have a city as its destination? The Lord of the Rings has its Mordor. The Wizard of Oz has its Emerald City. The Hunger Games has its Capitol. But no city looms larger in the ultimate epic of Jesus- Jerusalem. For months now we have been following him as he makes his way towards the ancient city of God's people. His followers are expecting big things, but Jesus knows what really awaits him. In fact, his entrance into the city itself is a preview of what's coming. Today we will compare the fickle crowd with the faithful king.

  18. Jesus Hates False Religion
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Jesus Clears The Temple

    Gentle Jesus, Meek and Mild...Too often Jesus is thought of in these unthreatening terms. Nothing could be further from capturing what Jesus did when he entered the temple on his second day in Jerusalem on the last week of his life. Why the rage? Why did he curse a fig tree on his way in? The questions are important as they give us a glimpse of something God hates: false religion.

  19. Praying Like Jesus
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Praying Like Jesus

    We are following Jesus in his last week on earth, and today we come to a critical question- what will his followers do when Jesus is no longer present physically? They will not have him around anymore, but they will be responsible to carry on his mission. Today we learn the incredible means Jesus gives his disciples to draw down divine power.

  20. The Stunning Wisdom Of Jesus
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Jesus Stumps The Hypocrites

    What will Jesus do when the religious leaders who hate him put him between a rock and a hard place? "By what authority do you do these things," they ask him. If he says, "by God's" or even "I am God in the flesh," then he will be charged with blasphemy and killed. (This will happen in a few more days, but for now he has more work to do). In an impossibly difficult situation Jesus calmly shows his wisdom and turns it around on the hypocrites, leaving them speechless.

  21. The Tragedy Of Murdering God's Own Son
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Parable Of Crucifixion

    Jesus was a master story teller. But his most shocking stories are usually the "primrose path tales" where he leads his listeners down a seemingly innocent road only to shock them with an unexpected surprise at the end. Perhaps no story does this more effectively then the parable where the stewards of a vineyard kill the owner's own son.

  22. Dual Citizenship
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Rendering To Caesar

    Jesus' enemies never grew tired of trying to back him into a corner and get him tripped up over his own words. Who were they kidding? He is wisdom incarnate. Today we will see Jesus collapse the trap his enemies laid for him and learn a thing or two as well.

  23. Not The God Of The Dead But Of The Living
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Marriage And The Resurrection

    This week it's the Sadducees' turn to trap Jesus in what they think is an inescapable trap. A woman who has had 7 husbands...whose wife will she be at the resurrection? They think they have him dead to rights, no way out. But Jesus once again turns the tables. "You don't understand the Scriptures or the power of God." Let's see what Jesus teaches us about the next life.

  24. Life's Bottom Line
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Love God Love Neighbor

    There are a lot of commandments in Scripture, aren't there? The religous experts in Jesus' day counted 613! Here's a fun challenge- rank them in order of importance. Yeah- that's a little daunting, isn't it? Maybe if we could just get the most important one it would give us a framework for the others. Interestingly, that's exactly what Jesus does in our text today.

  25. David's Son And David's Lord
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    David Calls Jesus His Lord

    A thousand years before Jesus was born, Israel's greatest king, David, was promised a descendant who would rule all the nations. So most of Jesus' contemporaries expected that the Messiah would be a son of David. But that is only part of the story. Jesus looks at a Psalm David wrote and shows that David understood that his own descendant was also his Lord and God.

  26. Religion And Its Casualties
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The Widow's Mite

    Think you know the meaning of the widow's mite- the woman who gave all that she had. Is she an example of giving? This is the way it is usually interpreted and preached. But is Jesus really commending her? Or does he highlight her action for a different reason? Listen to find out.

  27. Trust in Jesus- Not Religion
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Mark 13- resumes

    Most men, indeed, play at religion as they play at games, religion itself being of all games the one most universally played. - A.W. Tozer

  28. The Glorious Benefits Of Difficult Texts
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Olivet Discourse pt 2

    Yes, it is the Lord who gives understanding. But he does it through our God-given thinking and the efforts we make, with prayer, to think hard about what the Bible says. – John Piper

  29. Godless Persecution and Gospel Perseverance
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Enduring through persecution

    One of the greatest paradoxes in Christian history is that the church is most pure in times of cultural hostility. When things are easy and good, that is when the church most often goes astray. When Christianity seems identical with the culture and even when the church seems to be enjoying its greatest earthly success, then it is weakest. Conversely, when the church encounters hardship, persecution, and suffering…then it is closest to its crucified Lord, then there are fewer hypocrites and nominal believers among its members, and then the faith of Christians burns most intensely. – Gene Edward Veith

  30. Sovereign Comfort In Sudden Chaos
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Olivet Discourse Pt 3

    For the sake of His elect the Lord withholds many judgments and shortens others. In great tribulations the fire would devour all were it not that Out of regard to His elect the Lord damps the flame. Thus, while He saves His elect for the sake of Jesus, He also preserves the race for the sake of His chosen. What an honor is thus put upon saints! How diligently they ought to use their influence with their Lord! He will hear their prayers for sinners. He blesses believers that they may be a blessing to those who are in unbelief. Many a sinner lives because of the prayers of a mother, or wife, or daughter to whom the Lord has respect. – Charles Spurgeon

  31. Jesus' Reign And Jerusalem's Ruin
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Fall Of Jerusalem A.D. 70

    It is evident that when Christ speaks of his coming; his being revealed; his coming in his Kingdom; or his Kingdom's coming; He has respect to his appearing in those great works of his Power Justice and Grace, which should be in the Destruction of Jerusalem and other extraordinary Providences which should attend it. – Jonathan Edwards

  32. Watching For Judgment- Waiting For Jesus
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Return of Christ

    And, moreover, the Christian may await to-morrow with even more than simple hope and joy; he may look forward to it with ecstasy in some measure, for he does not know but that to- morrow his Lord may come. To-morrow Christ may be upon this earth, "for such an hour as ye think not the Son of Man cometh.” – Charles Spurgeon

  33. Wherever The Gospel Is Preached Her Story Will Be Told
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Alabaster Jar

    If you consort with the common brethren and travel on the road to Heaven so slowly that it is a question whether you are going there at all, then you will escape criticism! If you keep with those who practice the snail’s march, they will call you a good, easy man—a right respectable person! But if you run for it. If you put out all the energy of your nature and are determined to live at a high pitch for Christ, you will get the cold shoulder, even from many of His disciples, for you will be practically condemning their half-heartedness. - Charles Spurgeon

  34. Because Of Jesus Everything Changes
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The Last Supper

    At exactly the hour of slaughter on Friday afternoon, the true Lamb would die, the veil in the temple would be ripped from top to bottom, and the system of sacrifice, the Levitical system would come to its final end. And it would be ended not by Judas and not by Herod and not by Caiaphas and not by the Jewish leaders at the Sanhedrin and not by the Romans, it would be ended by God who offered up His own Son as the perfect sacrifice. – John MacArthur

  35. Prone To Wander
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    Disciples Will Flee

    Let us take comfort in the thought that the Lord Jesus does not cast off his believing people because of failures and imperfections. It is His glory to pass over the transgressions of His people, and to cover their many sins. He knew what they were before conversion--wicked, guilty, and defiled; yet He loved them. He knows what they will be after conversion--weak, erring, and frail; yet He loves them. – J. C. Ryle

  36. Take This Cup
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Gethsemane

    The love of any mere man or angel would doubtless have sunk under such a weight, and never would have endured such a conflict in such a bloody sweat as that of Jesus Christ. The anguish of Christ's soul at that time was so strong as to cause that wonderful effect on his body. But his love to his enemies, poor and unworthy as they were, was stronger still. The heart of Christ at that time was full of distress, but it was fuller of love to vile worms: his sorrows abounded, but his love did much more abound. Christ's soul was overwhelmed with a deluge of grief, but this was from a deluge of love to sinners in his heart sufficient to overflow the world, and overwhelm the highest mountains of its sins. Those great drops of blood that fell down to the ground were a manifestation of an ocean of love in Christ's heart. – Jonathan Edwards

  37. The Betrayal And Arrest Of Jesus
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Betrayal and Arrest

    Let us leave the passage with a deep sense of our Lord's ability to sympathize with His believing people. If there is one trial greater than another, it is the trial of being disappointed in those we love. It is a bitter cup, which all true Christians have frequently to drink. Ministers fail them. Relations fail them. Friends fail them. One cistern after another proves to be broken, and to hold no water. But let them take comfort in the thought,that there is one unfailing Friend, even Jesus, who can be touched with the feeling of their infirmities, and has tasted of all their sorrows. Jesus knows what it is to see friends and disciples failing Him in the hour of need. Yet He bore it patiently, and loved them notwithstanding all. He is never weary of forgiving. Let us strive to do likewise. Jesus, at any rate, will never fail us. – J.C. Ryle

  38. Jesus Confesses- Peter Denies
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Peter's Denial

    Jesus stands on trial before the Sanhedrin, but the Sanhedrin will stand trial before the Son of Man when he returns in glory. The Sanhedrin makes a charade of Jesus’ ability to prophesy, but his prophecies all come true. Above all, it is the high priest, not Jesus, who blasphemes, because Jesus is God’s Son.
    – James Edwards

  39. The Statesman, The Scoundrel and The Substitute
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Pilate, Barabbas

    His honor and His breath

    Were taken both away,

    Joined with the wicked in His death,

    And made as vile as they.

    - Isaac Watts

  40. Mocked And Crucified...For Us!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Our Lord was clothed with a robe of shame and contempt, so that we might be clothed with a spotless garment of righteousness and stand in white robes before the throne of God.
    – J.C. Ryle

  41. "Truly This Man Was The Son Of God"
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Death of Jesus

    The good news is that God himself has decreed a way to satisfy the demands of His justice without condemning the whole human race. Hell is one way to settle accounts with sinners and uphold his justice. But there is another way. The wisdom of God has ordained a way for the love of God to deliver us from the wrath of God without compromising the justice of God. And what is this wisdom? The death of the Son of God for sinners!  ï¿½" John Piper

  42. God Buries His Son
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The body of Jesus was treated tenderly, given a full, honorable burial, and placed in a tomb that had never been used. This loving act was the ancient equivalent of getting full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery today.
    – R.C. Sproul

  43. See The Place Where They Laid Him
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    empty tomb

    The women are not directed to a mystical or spiritual experience or to a numinous encounter. They are directed specifically to Jesus, who died by a crucifixion they witnessed, was buried in a place they witnessed, and now has been resurrected.

    – James Edwards

  44. How Does Mark's Gospel End?
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    If we compare the present state of the New Testament text with that of any other ancient writing, we must declare it to be marvelously correct. Such has been the care with which the New Testament has been copied- a care that has doubtless grown out of true reverence for its holy words. The New Testament is unrivaled among ancient writings in the purity of its text as actually transmitted and kept in use. -B. B. Warfield

Special Messages

Occasional sermons that address a specific issue- not part of a series.

  1. God's Passion For The Fame Of Jesus
    Sermon Audio

    What Is God's Grand Goal In The Universe?

    A quote in this message says it all-

    "I’ve heard it said among believers: 'God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life.' I suppose it would be much more appropriate to say it this way: 'God loves His Son and has a wonderful plan for Him, to bring all the nations to His feet as Lord of all, and He loves you and me enough to give us a place in it.'” - David Bryant

  2. The Flood: Judgment And Redemption
    Sermon Audio

    What the flood teaches us about judgment and grace

    We are on the threshold of starting a new series on the church. But first, let's take a step back to look at the sweeping epic of God's redemptive story that leads up to the church of today. God is working to redeem people from sin, and this work took a major turn long ago in the time of Noah, when God flooded the world. As we explore Genesis 6-9, we'll see the heart of God that rejects our rebellion, but ultimately leads to saving grace.

  3. Assurance of Salvation
    Sermon Audio

    Can I know that I'm a Christian?

    This morning Pastor Greg takes a break from the Ekklesia series to address a question that he's heard being asked a lot lately at CFC- 'How Can I Be Sure That I'm Saved?' The question is important, but it is often a source of guilt and anxiety for many Christians who should find it comforting. May God's Spirit bring the sweet freedom of assurance to us this morning.

  4. A Wild Boar Loose In The Vineyard (Luther)
    Sermon Audio

    Reformation Sunday- Life Of Martin Luther

    On this day 493 years ago, a young monk named Martin Luther nailed 95 Theses on a church door in Wittenburg Germany. Did he know that that particular act would be a spark in a powder keg that would change the face of Christendom throughout Europe and eventually the world? What was it that motivated this young man to stand against popes, bishops and emperors? And how should his actions and legacy impact us today? Take some time to read Romans 1:16-17. And for those interested in Luther's life, check out Roland Bainton's classic work Here I Stand.

  5. Keeping A Clear Head Amidst End-Times Mania
    Sermon Audio

    End Times Mania

    On this relaxed, snowy day after Christmas we spend some time talking about the return of Christ. Harold Camping and other Bible teachers have promoted a thoroughly unbiblical idea that we can know with specificity the time and date of Jesus' second coming. We examine this claim in light of Scripture.

  6. Why We Sing!
    Sermon Audio

    The gospel leads to worship

    In this special message, Pastor Nat demonstrates the connection between the gospel and worship in song. We don't just sing because we are "supposed" to, or because it is the "religious" thing to do. Quite the opposite, we sing because we want to, because the gospel has changed us!

  7. Treasuring Christ Above Everything
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Paul's example of treasuring Christ

    How should Jesus impact an already full and productive life? Is there a way that Jesus can be 'added' to an otherwise happy life the way you add seasoning to your favorite food? Too often Jesus is presented as 'spice' instead of 'substance.' The example of the apostle Paul shatters any notion that Jesus can simply be 'added' to someon's life. If he is received as Savior, then he is received as the essence of life itself.

  8. A Balanced Gospel
    Sermon Audio

    A balanced gospel, living the gospel, March 20, 2011

    The gospel is the message that will save us and guide us for everyday life. But do we have a balanced view of the gospel? This message will offer 2 common mistakes to avoid, 2 heart attitudes to embrace, and 2 action plans to live.  Nat LeTowt

  9. Don't Waste Your Life
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Make life count

    Pastor Greg dedicates this message to a very special friend- Angie Frederick. Angie has been battling cancer for over four years, but in these last days on this earth, she has done more for the Lord than most of us do in decades. May the Lord impress upon us the example of a woman who knows that life is wasted when it is not all about Jesus!

  10. It's The End Of The World As We Know It...And I Feel Fine
    Sermon Notes

    Lessons Learned From Harold Camping's Absurd Prediction

    Our apologies...this sermon did not record due to technical problems. Greg highly recommends reading this excellent letter by Timothy Dalrymple written to Harold Camping and his followers. You can also access Greg's powerpoint by clicking the 'download notes' section on the right.

  11. Bad Stuff Happens, Good Stuff Happens
    Sermon Audio

    Paul's Shipwreck, Malta- To Rome

    Our good friend Pastor Steve Hartland from Trinity Church joins us to bring a special message from the last two chapters of Acts. Paul's experience of both good and bad circumstances speaks powerfully of God's providence in the life of all believers.

  12. Cling to God
    Sermon Audio

    If we do not cling to God with all of our hearts, our lives will be wasted.  Even when we have not clung to God, Christ has still clung to us.

  13. Are You Proud?
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Questions To Diagnose Your Pride

    Our good friend, Brent Brewer, one of the pastors at Trinity Church in Joppa, brings a very challenging message on something to which we are really susceptible- pride.

  14. The Goodness Of God
    Sermon Audio

    The goodness of God

    Special guest Dave Shive brings an exceptional message on the goodness of God from Psalm 119.

  15. The Fear of Man
    Sermon Audio

    How to identify and deal with the fear of man.

    All of us carry with us, to one degree on another, a fear of other people.  Often our fear of people overtakes our fear of God. How can we identify the fear of man in our lives and learn to deal with it through the perfect love of Christ?

  16. The Believer's Longing
    Sermon Audio

    The glories of heaven

    On the sad occasion of Steve Leslie's passing, Greg invites Matt Smith, his dearest friend and pastor from Grace Community Church, to preach. Focusing exclusively on the last two chapters of the Bible, Matt masterfully unfolds the glories of the new heavens and the new earth.

  17. It's All About Him
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The Story Of God

    We have two choices: 1) Live in the story we write for ourselves or 2) Live in the story that God is writing. Sadly, the majority of people write their own script, find meaning in themselves and miss the very point of life. May God help us see the all-encompassing story that He has been writing since the beginning of time.

  18. God's Heart For The World (Special Seminar with Dave Shive)
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Genesis- Foundations Of Mission

    Unfortunately, most Christians think world missions was something not really seen until the Great Commission (Mt. 28) or the book of Acts. Dave Shive masterfully unfolds God's heart for the world in the first 12 chapters of Genesis- that's right- Genesis!

    BE SURE TO DOWNLOAD THE NOTES TO THIS MESSAGE- THEY ARE INVALUABLE!

  19. Tackling Truth Night- Is There An Intermediate State?
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    No Intermediate State

    Greg argues that there is no evidence for an intermediate state between a believer's death and the day of Jesus' return. In fact, it seems that it is more likely the a believer leaves time upon his death and goes immediately to the day of Jesus' return. Sound crazy? Take some time to listen to Greg's argument and examine the Scriptures for yourself.

  20. We Need Discernment
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Call to discernment

    In between our series in Mark and the start of a short Christmas series, Greg shares a short mini-series on discernment. A glance at best selling "Christian" books and common "Christian" cliches leaves the thinking Christian wondering- "WHERE HAS ALL THE DISCERNMENT GONE?"

  21. The Sin Of Grieving The Holy Spirit
    Sermon Audio

    Mr. Harding

    Professor Bill Harding, one of pastor Greg's beloved seminary instructors, preaches a message on the sin of grieving the Holy Spirit. Mr. Harding has been preaching the gospel for more than 60 years.

  22. Developing Biblical Discernment
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    How to discern

    Greg gives the 'sequel' message on biblical discernment. How is a Christian to puruse discernment? What are the means, the pitfalls, the rewards?

  23. Tackling Truth Night- Catholicism
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Catholicism

    Tackling Truth- The Delicate Challenge of Roman Catholicism- Presentation.

  24. Tackling Truth Night- Catholicism- Question And Answer
    Sermon Audio

    Q &A

    Q &A session

  25. He Shall See And Be Satisfied!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Easter 2012

    Jesus' satisfaction in the resurrection is looking out on a great assembly of people from every race and tribe and language and nation who have trusted him and been forgiven and justified. And with tremendous joy he walks among them now and in the ages to come – a people "great" and "strong”. And he divides the spoil of his triumphs with them all. This is what he loves to do. This is his satisfaction. He delights to save. – John Piper

  26. Special Message- We Need This Kind of Leadership
    Sermon Audio

    How will the baton be passed at Christ Fellowship? Answer: Faithful men.

  27. What Will Happen When Jesus Returns?
    Sermon Audio

    Professor Bill Harding preaches about Christ's return to earth!

  28. Return, Repent, Rejoice
  29. Adolescents, God, and Sex
  30. The Church In A Post-Christian Culture
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Post Election Day 2012 Message

    We must not be so engulfed in trying to force social behavior to conform to our standards that we become enemies of those our Lord has called us to win to Himself. We must reject sin and never compromise God's standards of righteousness. But we also must never engage in defamation and denigration of the lost sinners who make up our corrupt culture. When Christians become political, sinners become the enemy instead of the mission field.  – John MacArthur

  31. Getting Clear On Faith And Works
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Faith Works

    It’s not against works that we contend, it’s against trust in works that we contend.
    – Martin Luther

  32. "The Born-Again Identity" A People, A Possession, A Proclamation
  33. Follow The Leader
  34. Biblical Baptism Pt. 1
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Paul does not denigrate the practice of baptism per se, but baptism must be subordinated to the gospel so that it does not sabotage the gospel, that is, that Christ was crucified for sinners.
    – Thomas Schreiner

  35. Biblical Baptism Pt. 2
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The New Testament has no concept of an unbaptized Christian. When people repented and believed in Christ, they were baptized—often immediately—as a public profession of their faith and to identify with the body of believers.
    – John MacArthur

  36. Biblical Baptism Pt. 3
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    We ought to regard the sacrament of baptism with reverence. An ordinance of which the Lord Jesus Himself partook, is not to be lightly esteemed. An ordinance to which the great Head of the Church submitted, ought to be ever honorable in the eyes of professing Christians.
    – J. C. Ryle

  37. The God of Covenants
  38. Good Friday 2013
    Sermon Notes

    If Christ loved us because we loved him, He would love us only so long as we love Him, and on that condition; and then our salvation would depend on the constancy of our treacherous hearts. But as God loved us as sinners, as Christ died for us as ungodly, our salvation depends, as the apostle argues, not on our loveliness, but on the constancy of the love of God.
    – Charles Hodge

  39. By Many Proofs!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Without the belief in the Resurrection the Christian faith could not have come into being. The disciples would have remained crushed and defeated men. Even had they continued to remember Jesus as their beloved teacher, His crucifixion would have forever silenced any hopes of His being the Messiah. The cross would have remained the sad and shameful end of His career. The origin of Christianity therefore hinges on the belief of the early disciples that God had raised Jesus from the dead.
    – William Lane Craig

  40. The Glorious Work Of The Holy Spirit
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Spell this out in capital letters: THE HOLY SPIRIT IS A PERSON. He is not enthusiasm. He is not courage. He is not energy. He is not the personification of all good qualities, like Jack Frost is the personification of cold weather. Actually, the Holy Spirit is not the personification of anything... He has individuality. He is one being and not another. He has will and intelligence. He has hearing. He has knowledge and sympathy and ability to love and see and think. He can hear, speak, desire, grieve and rejoice. He is a Person.
    – A. W. Tozer 


  41. Expand Your Tent!
    Sermon Audio

    Jim and Jennifer Bowers, missionaries to Mali, visit with us today. Jim brings a very timely, insightful message from Isaiah 54.

  42. From Him, Through Him, To Him
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    We were made to know and treasure the glory of God above all things. The sun of God's glory was made to shine at the center of the solar system of our soul. And when it does, all the planets of our life are held in their proper orbit. But when the sun is displaced, everything flies apart. The healing of the soul begins by restoring the glory of God to its flaming, all-attracting place at the center. – John Piper

  43. The Life Of A Pastor Amidst The Church
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The church cannot be expected to do its work effectively if their followers are not loyally supporting the leaders. It’s a matter of fact that we’re often slow to realize to this day that effective leadership in the church of Christ demands effective following. If we’re continually critical of them that are set over us, small wonder if they’re unable to perform the miracles that we demand of them. If we bear in mind the work’s sake, we may be more inclined to esteem them very highly in love. – Leon Morris

  44. Worship in Spirit and Truth
  45. Right-Sizing Our View Of God
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    How big is your God?

    "Who has measured the waters in the hollow of his hand and marked off the heavens with the span of his hand... Behold, the nations are like a drop in the bucket, and are accounted as dust on the scales." ~Isaiah 40:12,15

  46. When "Glory" Is Just A Word
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Did Paul or the psalmists or the celebrated saints of history ever struggle with this despair? Yes, they did. And we should take heart. We all struggle with seasons of lukewarmness and spiritual numbness of heart. There are times in the lives of the most godly people when spiritual hunger becomes weak, and darkness threatens to consume the light, and everything but the vaguely remembered taste of joy evaporates. – John Piper

  47. Assasin's Creed
    Sermon Audio

    Elder Bill Heidel teaches on battling sin in the Christian life.

  48. The Story Of God
    Sermon Audio

    What happened before Genesis 1:1? Believe it or not we can find out.

  49. From Heaven He Came And Sought Her
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The fellowship of the church is part of God's good news to men. It imparts to the gospel one of its most thrilling notes—that when Christ saves a man he not only saves him from his sin, he saves him from his solitude.

    - Frank Colquhoun

  50. From Heaven He Came And Sought Her Pt. 2
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Some people construct a Christianity which consists entirely of a personal relationship to Jesus Christ and has virtually nothing to do with the church. Others make a grudging concession to the need for church membership, but add that they have given up the institution as hopeless. Now it is understandable, even inevitable, that we are critical of many of the church's inherited structures and traditions. Every church in every place at every time is in need of reform and renewal. But we need to beware lest we despise the church of God, and are blind to his work in history. We may safely say that God has not abandoned his church, however displeased with it he may be. He is still building and refining it. And if God has not abandoned it, how can we?

    - John Stott

  51. What Do You Want?
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    “Jesus Christ is saying here, “Don’t rejoice in your successful service for Me, but rejoice because of your right relationship with Me.” The trap that we may fall into in Christian work is to rejoice in successful service – rejoicing in the fact that God has used you. Yet you will never be able to fully measure what God will do through you, if you do not have a right-standing relationship with Jesus Christ. If you keep your relationship right with Him, then regardless of your circumstances, He will continue to pour “rivers of living water” through you. And it is actually by His mercy that He does not let you know it. ,,,,, remember that whatever your circumstances may be, you have been placed in them by God. And God uses the reaction of your life to your circumstances to fulfill His purpose, as long as you continue to “walk in the light as He is in the light”. All that our Lord gives His attention to in a person’s life is that person’s relationship with God – something of great value to His Father. Jesus is “bringing many sons to glory.” - Oswald Chambers

  52. Blessed Are The Poor In Spirit (8:30 am)
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Happiness can never be found directly. Happiness is always and only a by-product of seeking something else more than happiness. If you seek righteousness more than happiness, you’ll get both. If you seek happiness more than righteousness, you’ll get neither. - Tim Keller

     

  53. Blessed Are The Merciful (10am)
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Happiness can never be found directly. Happiness is always and only a by-product of seeking something else more than happiness. If you seek righteousness more than happiness, you’ll get both. If you seek happiness more than righteousness, you’ll get neither. - Tim Keller

     

  54. Blessed Are Those Who Mourn (11:30)
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Happiness can never be found directly. Happiness is always and only a by-product of seeking something else more than happiness. If you seek righteousness more than happiness, you’ll get both. If you seek happiness more than righteousness, you’ll get neither. - Tim Keller

     

  55. What Is The Atonement?
    Sermon Audio

    He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed. For you were straying like sheep, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.

    (1 Peter 2:24-25 ESV)

     

  56. How Great Is Our God
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Like a traveler who has reached the summit of an Alpine ascent, the apostle turns and contemplates. Depths are at his feet, but waves of light illumine them, and there spreads all around an immense horizon which his eye commands. The plan of God in the government of mankind spreads out before him, and he expresses the feelings of admiration and gratitude with which the prospect fills his heart. – Frederick Godet

     

  57. It's All Greek to Me
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Some 2000 years ago, Paul addressed a society at the height of Art, Architecture,Literature, Philosophy, Religion and Commercial Success. His speech on Mars Hill cut deeply to the hearts and minds of the Athenians. As we look at these passages today, I think we will find 20th century American Society has more in common with these Ancient Greeks than we might want to admit.

    Some 2000 years ago, Paul addressed a society at the height of Art, Architecture,Literature, Philosophy, Religion and Commercial Success. His speech on Mars Hill cut deeply to the hearts and minds of the Athenians. As we look at these passages today, I think we will find 20th century American Society has more in common with these Ancient Greeks than we might want to admit.

     

  58. Suffering Ends- Glory Doesn't!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Our sorrows are all, like ourselves, mortal. There are no immortal sorrows for immortal souls. They come, but blessed be God, they also go. Like birds of the air, they fly over our heads. But they cannot make their abode in our souls. We suffer today, but we shall rejoice tomorrow. - Charles Spurgeon

  59. God With Us in The Midst Of Chaos
  60. Now What? (A Response To Legalized Gay Marriage)
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    We must not be so engulfed in trying to force social behavior to conform to our standards that we become enemies of those our Lord has called us to win to Himself. We must reject sin and never compromise God's standards of righteousness. But we also must never engage in defamation and denigration of the lost sinners who make up our corrupt culture. When Christians become political, sinners become the enemy instead of the mission field. - John MacArthur

  61. Cross-Fit
    Sermon Audio

    To live a Godly life you have to train for spiritual health just like you would train your physical body for physical health. Scripture is the reliable training plan, nutrition, mirror and weight scale.

    To live a Godly life you have to train for spiritual health just like you would train your physical body for physical health. Scripture is the reliable training plan, nutrition, mirror and weight scale.

  62. The Nature Of Spiritual Growth
  63. Jesus Is Better Than Ministry
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    It was the design of Christ to withdraw his disciples from a transitory joy, that they might glory in eternal life, he leads them to its origin and source, which is, that they were chosen by God and adopted as his children. 

    – John Calvin

  64. Mark Sweeney - October 18
  65. Judgment and Mercy - Mark Sweeney
  66. Forgiving Others
  67. Measureless Love
    Sermon Audio

    The love of Christ is held out to us as the subject which ought to occupy our daily and nightly meditations, and in which we ought to be wholly plunged. - Calvin

  68. God's Bottle Of Tears
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Every step which the fugitive had taken when pursued by his enemies, was not only observed but thought worthy of counting and recording. We perhaps are so confused after a long course of trouble, that we hardly know where we have or where we have not been; but the omniscient and considerate Father of our spirits remembers all in detail; for he has counted them over as men count their gold, for even the trial of our faith is precious in his sight. – Charles Spurgeon

  69. The Jealousy Of God
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    What does it mean to say God is "jealous?"

  70. Great Is Thy Faithfulness

    Thank Lord for 2903 Beechwood Ln!

Ekklesia

Ekklesia (ek-klay-see'-ah) is the New Testament Greek word for ‘church.’ Today when we hear ‘church’ most of us think ‘building.’ But when our ancient ancestors in the faith heard ‘ekklesia’ they never would have thought ‘building.’ In fact, there were not any church buildings for the first 300 years of Christianity’s existence!

 

So Christ Fellowship is going to spend the Fall focusing on this mysterious ancient word. What is the EKKLESIA? What is its essence? Why has God made it is his primary vehicle for changing the world? What does it mean for an individual Christ-follower to be a part of it?

 

These questions are critical for the very reason that few people ever think to even ask them! But if what John Piper writes is true (and it is), then this will be one of our most important sermon series at Christ Fellowship.

 

"The church of Jesus Christ is the most important institution in the world. The assembly of the redeemed, the company of the saints, the children of God are more significant in world history than any other group, organization or nation. The United States of America compares to the church of Jesus Christ like a speck of dust compares to the sun. The drama of international relations compares to the mission of the church like a kindergarten riddle compares to Hamlet or King Lear. And all pomp of May Day in Red Square and the pageantry of New Year's in Pasadena fade into a formless grey against the splendor of the bride of Christ. Take heed how you judge. Things are not what they seem. "All flesh is like grass. And all its glory like the flower of grass. The grass withers, and the flower falls, but the word of the Lord (and all His family) abide forever" (1 Peter 1:24,25). The media and all the powers, and authorities and rulers and stars that they present are a mirage. "For what is exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God" (Luke 16:15). The gates of hades, the powers of death, will prevail against every institution but one, the church." – John Piper

  1. Ekklesia Pt 1: 'Loved And Died For'
    Sermon Audio

    Where do we start when seeking to answer the question- "What is the Church?" It may seem logical to simply offer a definition of the 'church.' We'll get there- but not in this message. There is a sense of awestruck wonder we should experience when considering the church. Take a moment to read Ephesians 5:25-27.

  2. Ekklesia Pt 2: 'Created And Connected'
    Sermon Audio

    How God Creates The Church By Connecting Us

    When asked, "What happened the moment you became a Christian?"- what would most of us say? "My sins were forgiven." "My soul was saved." "I was set free from my bondage." All are great answers, are all true. But one thing is rarely said- "I became part of a community that transcends all times and places." This morning we will see that one person's individual encounter with Christ is just a small part of God building his church.

  3. Ekklesia Pt. 3 'Purposed And Called'
    Sermon Audio

    Last week we answered the question "How?" How does God bring the church into being. We saw that God creates the church by rescuing individuals from their sin and connecting them to each other. This morning we tackle the question "Why?" What is the purpose of this unlikely 'band of brothers?' Take a moment to read 1 Peter 2:9-10.

  4. Ekklesia Pt. 4 'Gathered And Planted'
    Sermon Audio

    The local church

    We have seen that God loved the church and sent Jesus to die for it, and that when a person becomes a Christian God joins him to the other transformed people who make up the church. Last week we saw that God intends this group of people to be a light to the world. Finally- we ask our first 'how?' question this morning. How does all of this manifest in the everyday humdrum of life? The answer may surprise you. Take a moment to read Acts 14:19-23.

  5. Ekklesia Pt. 5 'Protected And Led'
    Sermon Audio

    elders

    We live in an age of mistrust and suspicion- particularly about our leaders. How many politicians, celebrities and religious leaders have fallen into disrepute? It is understandable that we would be reluctant to embrace leaders. But this morning we'll see that God wants us to have no reluctance to embrace the the leaders he gives to his churches as a gift. Take a moment to read Acts 20:17-38.

  6. Ekklesia Pt. 6 'Summoned And Sent'
    Sermon Audio

    The Great Commission

    Today we start a sort of mini-series within the Ekklesia series. What is a missional church? How is it different from an attractional church? Is it really that important of a question? This morning Greg will argue that it is THE question for us. If we go wrong on this question, we go wrong everywhere. Take some time to read Matthew 28:18-20.

  7. Ekklesia Pt. 7 'Linked And Loved'
    Sermon Audio

    Together we fulfill the Great Commission

    Finally- we come to the 'How' question in our series! We have seen that God intends his church to make disciples of all nations. But how is this done? Is this something Christians do invidually? Should we even bother having a Sunday morning worship service is the 'business' of the church is bringing the gospel to all people? This morning we consider how the early church sought to practically live out the mission.

  8. Ekklesia Pt. 8 'Fueled And Focused'
    Sermon Audio

    Ekklesia Part 8

    How? We continue to ask the question- 'How do we live in community in a way that brings the gospel to the world?" It has to be more than ninety minutes a Sunday morning? If it isn't, we will not fulfill the mission Jesus has for us. In this message we talk about the four identities of living in community: family, servants, learners and missionaries.

  9. Ekklesia Pt. 9 'Positioned And Prepared'
    Sermon Audio

    Everyday Evangelism

    Who's afraid of evangelism? Last week we spelled out what a community group looks like: a family of servants, learners and missionaries. Most of us like the family part. Being a learner is comfortable usually. Servanthood is hard, but most of us are willing to commit ourselves to it. But missionary? No way! Isn't that for the 'elite' Christians among us who are willing to learn a new language, sell all their possessions and go overseas? This morning God's word will confront our thinking and turn it inside out.

  10. Ekklesia Pt. 10 'Renewed And Revealed'
    Sermon Audio

    Church- A New Society Implanted In The Middle Of The Old Society

    Have you ever thought of the number of ways God could have chosen to transform the world. The power of endless galaxies is at his disposal, and he uses the strangest of all means...us!  In our last message in the series, we see how God has been pleased to change the world through the church.

Mary And The Scandal Of Christmas

We take our Christmases seriously at Christ Fellowship. Not because it's the 'cutesy' or 'churchy' thing to do, but because we believe that in a culture of such syruppy sentimenatlism, we need to boldy proclaim the earthy, raw in-your-face truth of the Christmas story.

 

 

Perhaps nothing is more provocative to our 'Bing-Crosby-Styled' Christmas attitude than the shocking scandal of the first Christmas. A young teen-age girl who says that no man was responsible for her pregnancy. A young man who 'knows' that it wasn't him and struggles with the sense of betrayal that surely haunted him. And frighteningly celestial creatures telling them to accept an unbelievable explanation for this state of affairs. The first Christmas was a scandal. And it appears that God intended it to be so...He wanted the world's attention. Apparently, He still does!

 

 

This Christmas season we will be exploring the intriguing character of Mary and the scandal of Christ's birth.

  1. How Do You Solve A Problem Like Mary?
    Sermon Audio

    Mary's Role In The Christmas Story

    How do you solve a problem like Mary? She poses a 'problem' in that there seem to be only two options in understanding Mary's role in the Bible. 1) Like millions around the world engaging in what some call 'Mary Mania', Mary is venerated, adored, even prayed to. 2) In reaction to such lavish devotion to Mary, many make little or no mention of her at all. But how should we who are serious about understanding the Bible, and the Christmas story in particular, think about Mary? This morning we will let Mary speak for herself!

  2. The Savior Born Amidst Scandal And Suffering
    Sermon Audio

    Mary's marred reputation due to her obedience

    As I write this sermon description, I am listening to Bing Crosby's 'White Christmas' in the background. It is hard to think of a more classic carol that captures the tranquility and wholesomeness of the Christmas season. How ironic when contrasted with that first Christmas. Few were going to view Mary as 'wholesome' when she said that she was pregnant without the agency of a man. And as she considered the damage done to her reputation it is doubtful she was feeling very 'tranquil.' There is always a cost to identifying with Jesus.

  3. The Burden Of Raising The Savior
    Sermon Audio

    Simeon Finally Sees The Messiah!

    No matter how much we try to sentimentalize Christmas, the Bible has a way of bringing us back to the more earthy reality of the birth of Jesus. When the baby was just 8 days old Mary and Joseph met one of the most enigmatic men in the pages of Scripture. Simeon was quite elderly by this time, but years earlier God had promised him that his eyes would not close in death until he had seen the Messiah. How overjoyed he must have been to have held the salvation of the whole world in his hands. But just when the hallmark music starts playing, he turns to Mary and tells her something rather dark- something that will affect her destiny. What was it that would one day break Mary’s heart?

What Becomes Of The Broken Hearted? Psalms Of Despair And Deliverance

R.E.M. had a hit song years ago called 'Everybody Hurts.' It was a big hit which is strange in many ways, isn't it? Conventional wisdom would say that if you want to get through life most effectively, 'think positive thoughts.' 'Gray skies are gonne clear up, put on a happy face.' Or if you're feeling a little '80s, 'Don't worry. Be happy.' But the opening lines of R.E.M.'s song are sobering...

 

 

When the day is long and the night, the night is yours alone,

 

 

When you're sure you've had enough of this life, well hang on

 

 

Don't let yourself go, 'cause everybody cries and everybody hurts sometimes

 

 

But long before R.E.M. there were other songs that delt with heartache and pain in a brutally honest way. In fact, the Bible has a whole collection of them.

 

 

For the first series of 2011, we will ask the question 'What Becomes Of The Broken Hearted?' The Bible is not shy about addressing the problem of pain and suffering. The Psalms have a way of describing pain in such a vivid and personal way that we who are hurting can immediately identify with the passage. By God's grace, He will teach us how to walk through pain and move from despair to deliverance.

  1. The God Of Those Who Weep
    Sermon Audio

    Honest grief and anguish are sacred to God.

    How should the Christian deal with sadness? Is it his obligation to 'put on a happy face' and suck up the pain? Is depression a sign of weakness, or worse, a lack of faithfulness to God? This morning we will look at Psalm 42 to see how a genuine believer struggles with heart break.

  2. Is It REALLY Ok To Question God?
    Sermon Audio

    The ultimate cry of lament

    Is it OK to question God? Perhaps a better way to ask it is 'are we ALLOWED to question God- or is that blasphemy?' Interestingly, we find that in Scripture the answer is 'yes' or 'no.' That may sound political, but there are specific examples of holy questioning and unholy questioning in the Bible. May God help each of us learn the difference between the two!

  3. How To Confess Like A Bold, Audacious Sinner
    Sermon Audio

    David's confession

    We've been talking about suffering and how to deal with pain. But today we ask a more specific question- How to we handle suffering when it is a result of our sin? Is comfort only for the innocent or is there some hope for the guilty when they suffer? Psalm 51 is a treasure chest for the bold, audacious sinner.

  4. How To Suffer When "Life's Not Fair"
    Sermon Audio

    Suffering when it does not make sense

    In the last message, we considered how to suffer when our pain is a direct result of our own sin. This sermon is the flip side of the coin- how to suffer when, as far as we can tell, we have not sinned. The subject is sacred as God must deem it important enough to make it a them in several Psalms. May God help us learn to suffer when life seems unfair.

  5. How To Pray When You Can't Break Through
    Sermon Audio

    The most shocking Psalm in the Bible.

    What does the Christian do when he prays but can't 'break through.' When his prayers are bouncing off the ceiling, when the darkness seems darker after praying than it was before, when it seems that there is no way to every be joyful again? Psalm 88 is not just a psalm to answer these questions- it is these questions! May God help us when we collapse in prayer.

  6. How To Fight For Your Joy
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Fight For Joy!

    We have not rushed in this series through the 'tough stuff.' God considers cries, heartache and pain sacred in his sight, and He does not shy away from the broken-hearted. Yet finally we come to the joy that He intends his children to experience! But joy is something that must be fought for- especially when those fighting for it are broken-hearted!

  7. Beware Of The 'Margaritaville' Gospel
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Danger of Prosperity Gospel

    You hear their voices- "God wants you to be wealthy, healthy and happy." They promise a "peaches and cream" life if you could only believe the promises of the gospel. They sell millions of book, host massive crusades and bombard the airwaves every day. But are they telling us the truth? We've been in the sacred song book [Psalms] all winter, and the Bible seems to paint quite a different picture. This morning we will look the 'Margaritaville' gospel square in the eye and compare it to the unchanging word of God.

  8. Depression, Dependence And Discipleship
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    A Christian View Of Depression

    The Bible never mentions Paxil, Prozac or Lexapro. It fact it never mentions therapy, counseling or psychiatry? So is the Bible out of touch? Can it really address us in an age of such complicated issues? Today we seek to develop some thoughts on what may be labeled, "A Theology Of Depression." One of the most common questions I am asked as a pastor is, "Greg, what should I do about my depression?" Counseling, medication, phsyciatrist or psychologist? What people seem to be asking is, "How should a Christian respond to depression?" May God shed his wisdom on this tricky subject!

  9. Jesus: The Singing Savior
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Jesus is the heart of the Psalms!

    We conclude our series this morning. It is the first Sunday in March, and most of us are glad to put the winter behind us. Yet God has met us in the cold and darkness of winter- especially the one so often found in His people's hearts. God does not distance himself from us in our suffering. In fact, He actually gives us the very songs to sing back to Him! Have you ever considered that Jesus himself sang these same psalms? Even more importantly, have you ever considered that Jesus is the very heart of the psalms?

Good Friday 2011

Why was Jesus taunted so much by the soldiers, the religious leaders and even by the onlookers? Wasn't being crucified enough punishment. Explore why the brutal taunting of Jesus was so important to each gospel writer that it is mentioned frequently.

  1. Good Friday- The Irony Of His Taunting
    Sermon Audio

    Jesus' suffering

    Why do all the gospel writers highlight the verbal abuse that Jesus received in connection to his crucifixion? Doesn't simply dying such a horrible death make mentioning petty verbal taunts seem irrelevant? Tonight we will see just how significant the irony of his taunting was and why it deeply matters to us.

Easter 2011

How does Jesus' triumph over the grave impact us personally? What does Jesus' victory have to say to my own fear of death?

  1. He Holds The Keys!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Jesus holds the keys to death and Hades.

    An often overlooked text on Easter, Revelation 1:17-18 describes Jesus in his post-resurrection exalted glory. It is a stunning picture. Those who are facing death- all of us ultimately- should take heart by beholding the one who holds the keys to death and Hades! He is risen!

Why God Became Man

  1. Why God Became Man- Pt. 1
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Christmas 2011 1st message

    It is hard for man not to put himself at the center of everything. But we will get the true meaning of Christmas totally wrong if we put ourselves at the heart of the story. God became man, but man's benefit was NOT the ultimate reason.

  2. Why God Became Man Pt. 2- To Reveal The Father
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Where would we be without God revealing himself to us? Could we ever find him on our own? If we were left in spritual darkness- what hope would we have? This is why Christmas is such good news. God will not leave us in the dark!

  3. Why God Became Man Pt 3: To Crush Satan
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Part 3

    It is easy to make the Christmas story sound quaint. Peaceful manger scenes, Bing Crosby songs and piping hot chocolate have a way of taking the military feel out of the Christmas story. "Military feel?" you ask. That's right. This morning we will see that the first Christmas is about an invasion. The Son of God touches down in enemy-occupied territory and comes to do battle.

Know The Truth

  1. Who Cares About Theology Anyway?
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Introduction to Know The Truth

    Isn't theology just a waste of time? An exercise for eggheads and academicians? Does it have anything to do with everyday life?

  2. The God Who Is
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Theology Proper

    "What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us. The history of mankind will probably show that no people has ever risen above its religion, and man’s spiritual history will positively demonstrate that no religion has ever been greater than its idea of God. Worship is pure or base as the worshiper entertains high or low thoughts of God. For this reason the gravest question before the Church is always God Himself, and the most portentous fact about any man is not what he at a given time may say or do, but what he in his deep heart conceives God to be like." - A. W. Tozer

     

  3. God In Three Persons
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The Trinity

    The important point is not whether we can understand the Trinity, even with the help of illustrations, but whether we will believe what the Bible has to say about the Father, Son and Holy Spirit, and about their relationship to each other.

    – James Montgomery Boice

  4. The God Who Creates Pt. 1
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Creation

    "God was under no constraint, no obligation, no necessity to create.  That He chose to do so was purely a sovereign act on His part, caused by nothing outside Himself, determined by nothing but His own mere good pleasure." A. W. Pink

  5. The God Who Creates Pt. 2
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Man

    "The image of God is personhood and personhood can only function in relationship. The image of God is the capacity for personal relationships and, most importantly, for a personal relationship with God. When God said “let us make man in our image”, He introduces to us at that point the concept that He is a God of relationship and then creates us in that image so that we are creatures of relationship." - John MacArthur                                                

  6. The God Who Speaks
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Bible

    There is more of His glory in the Word than there is in the whole creation of heaven and earth.         – Jeremiah Burroughs

  7. The God Who Is Holy
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Doctrine of Sin

    To say that our first need in life is to learn about sin may sound strange, but in the sense intended it is profoundly true. If you have not learned about sin, you cannot understand yourself, or your fellow-men, or the world you live in, or the Christian faith. And you will not be able to make head or tail of the Bible. For the Bible is an exposition of God’s answer to the problem of human sin, and unless you have that problem clearly before you, you will keep missing the point of what it says… It is clear, therefore, that we need to fix in our minds what our ancestors would have called “clear views of sin. – J. I. Packer

  8. The God Who Saves Pt. 1
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The Person Of Jesus Christ

    Our Savior must be fully man in order to take the place of men and die in their stead, and He must be fully God in order for the value of His sacrificial payment to satisfy the demands of our infinitely holy God. Man He must be, but a mere man simply could not make this infinite payment for sin. - Bruce Ware

  9. The God Who Saves Pt. 2
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Salvation Part 2- Christ's great work of redemption

    Jesus lived the life we should have lived, and died the death we should have died! - Tim Keller

  10. The God Who Saves Pt. C
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Justification, Imputation

    This is the rock where we stand when the dark clouds gather and the floods lick at our feet: justification is by grace alone (not mixed with our merit), through faith alone (not mixed with our works) on the basis of Christ alone (not mingling his righteousness with ours), to the glory of God alone (not ours).

    – John Piper

  11. The God Who Saves Pt. D
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Regeneration, New Birth

    "Regeneration is the spiritual change wrought in the heart of man by the Holy Spirit in which his inherently sinful nature is changed so that he/she can respond to God in Faith, and live in accordance with His will. It extends to the whole nature of man, altering his governing disposition, illuminating his mind, freeing his will, and renewing his nature." - J. I. Packer

  12. Pt. 11- The God Who Pursues
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Church

    The fellowship of the church is part of God's good news to men. It imparts to the gospel one of its most thrilling notes—that when Christ saves a man he not only saves him from his sin, he saves him from his solitude. - Frank Colquhoun

  13. The God Who Returns
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Return of Christ

    The apostolic church thought more about the Second Coming of Jesus Christ than about death and heaven. The early Christians were looking, not for a cleft in the ground called a grave but for a crack in the sky called Glory. - Alexander Maclaren

Topical

  1. Worthy of the Lord
  2. Majesty and Meekness

  3. Smoke and Mirrors
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Leviticus 1: The Burnt Offering

    "Try to read through the Bible from beginning to end and you're likely to slow
    down or stop at Leviticus. Reading ceremonial law delivered to the ancient
    Israelites can be tedious and drawn out. But what does the law reflect about
    the Law-giver, and does it have an application for our worship today?"

  4. Don't Be Safe
    Sermon Audio

    Daniel 3, safety, priorities, idolatry, faith, and the glory of God.

    God does not promise us physical safety or comfortable living in this world.  He has promised us eternal safety when we trust in him, because Jesus Christ has overcome the world.  When faithfulness, not safety, is our conviction, we get the greatest reward and God gets the most glory.  - Nat

  5. Unity in the Church

Who's Afraid Of The Old Testament

Do you find yourself avoiding the Old Testament? Are the unpronounceable names and cities too much to tackle sometimes? Does reading a nine chapter narrative about war, treaties and temple court measurments seem unrelatable? You're not alone! Most Christians have a conflicted feeling when it comes to the first 39 books of the Bible. We know it is God's word. We know that it predicts the coming of Jesus Christ. And we know that Jesus quoted it a great deal. But let's be honest...we're not sure we understand it!

Many pastors avoid it in their preaching. Old Testament scholar Gleason Archer challenges this policy of avoidance with compelling logic.

"How can Christian pastors hope to feed their flock on a well-balanced spiritual diet if they completely neglect the 39 books of Holy Scripture on which Christ and all the New Testament authors received their own spiritual nourishment?"

Christ Fellowship will be spending six weeks overcoming OT Phobia. Once we understand the purpose, structure and beauty of the Old Testament, we will be better informed and motivated to spend more time in this wonderful section of Scripture.

  1. Overcoming "OT-Phobia"
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Introduction to the Old Testament

    Once we truly grasp the message of the New Testament, it is impossible to read the Old Testament again without seeing Christ on every page, in every story, foreshadowed or anticipated in every event and narrative.
    – Michael Horton

  2. A 3-Verse Summary Of The Whole Bible
    Sermon Audio

    Outline of Bible

    The idea of missions, that is, God’s desire to bless the entire world, did not begin in the New Testament or with Jesus. Missions began in the heart of God.
    - Steve Heartsill

  3. Israel- God's Treasure
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Exodus Summary

    This act of God, the leading of Israel out of Egypt—from Israel’s point of view, the march out of Egypt, the Exodus, is the determinative event in Israel’s history for all time to come.

    - Rolf Rendtorff

  4. The Long Arm Of The Law
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Law in the Old Testament

    While the Law defines righteousness, only grace delivers it. The Law was never intended to be a means of obtaining grace; it was given to demonstrate to men that grace was desperately needed.
    – Bob Deffinbaugh

  5. The Life Is In The Blood
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    OT Sacrifices

    We are to think of the sacrificial system as God-given, not of human origin, and of the individual sacrifices not as a human device to placate God but as a means of atonement provided by God himself. – John Stott

  6. How Were OT People Saved?
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    OT Salvation

    Abraham was a good man, even a great man. He is a model of Old Testament piety. Yet Abraham was not saved by his works, not could he be saved by them. If this man could not be saved by good works, it is certain that you and I, who are far less pious and godly than he was, cannot be saved by them. – James Montgomery Boice

  7. Finding Christ In The Old Testament
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Remove Christ from the Scriptures and there is nothing left. – Martin Luther

Christmas 700 B.C.

700 years before Jesus was born the story of his birthday was already being told. So important was the invasion of the Son of God into human history that Isaiah the prophet was given a glimpse of Christmas. How captivated must the prophet have been by what God was revealing to him. But we have an advantage over even Isaiah. We live on the other side of that first Christmas. And we can now look back on Isaiah's predictions and see them beutifully fulflled in the New Testament story of the first Christmas!

  1. Christmas 700 B.C. Part 1
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Christmas is the beachhead of God’s campaign against sin and sadness, against darkness and death.

    – Tullian Tchividjian

  2. Christmas 700 BC Pt. 2
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Just as Isaiah had predicted eight centuries earlier, the despised, sin-darkened, and rebellious Galileans were the first to glimpse the Messiah, the first to see the dawning of God’s new covenant. Not mighty and beautiful Jerusalem, the queen city of the Jews, but Galilee of the Gentiles would first hear Messiah’s message. Not the learned, proud, and pure Jews of Jerusalem, but the mongrel, downcast, nontraditional mixed multitude of Samaria and Galilee had that great honor. To those who were neediest, and who were most likely to recognize their need, Jesus went first. The fact that Jesus began His ministry in Samaria and Galilee, rather than in Jerusalem and Judea, emphasizes the fact that His gospel of salvation was for the whole world
    – John MacArthur

Amos: A Prophet For Today

This year we are privileged to journey through the book of Amos. A humble shepherd, interrupted by God's call and raised up to speak words of judgment to all the nations (even his own!), Amos is a fascinating figure for us to study. 21st century Western Christianity needs the white-hot spotlight of this man's words. He describes his whole prophecy as the roaring of a lion. May God help us tremble in reverence as we hear him speak to us today.

  1. Amos- The Lion Roars!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    God’s patience is vast, far greater than ours. But it is not the patience of a moral invertebrate. God is no jellyfish. He has spine, and because he has spine, his patience unlike some of his other divine attributes is not infinite. God can come to the end of his tether. He can be provoked once too often. He can and sometimes does say, “this is the last straw. And the book of Amos is the record of just such an occasion in the history of Israel. A moment where God’s patience ran out.
    – Alistair Begg

  2. Amos- God Of The Nations
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    It is sad to find so many Christians who appear to regard the wrath of God as something for which they need to apologize, or at least they wish there were no such thing. While some would not go so far as to openly admit that they consider it a blemish on the Divine character, yet they are far from regarding it with delight, they like not to think about it, and they rarely hear it mentioned without a secret resentment rising up in their hearts against it.
    – A.W. Pink

  3. Amos- Judgment Comes Home
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Amos emphasizes the inner spring of conduct and the outer manifestation of conduct. Life begins on the inside. Judah’s abandonment of the fellowship of God and the foundational strength of God’s truth began in the mind and nothing then could stop that rejection from appearing in life.
    – J. A. Motyer

  4. You Only Have I Known
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The God of the modern evangelical rarely astonishes anybody. He manages to stay pretty much with the constitution. Never break our by-laws. He’s a very well-behaved God and very denominational and very much like one of us…we ask Him to help us when we're in trouble and look to Him to watch over us when we're asleep. The God of the modern evangelical isn't a God I could have much respect for.
    – A. W. Tozer

  5. You Did Not Return To Me
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Losses and adversities are frequently the means which the great Shepherd uses to fetch home His wandering sheep. There is no making lions tame if they are too well fed; they must be brought down from their great strength, and their stomachs must be lowered, and then they will submit to the tamer’s hand; and often have we seen the Christian rendered obedient to the Lord’s will by lack of bread and hard labour. – Charles Spurgeon

  6. Seek Me And Live
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    If thy sin be great, remember also that God's mercy is a bottomless, boundless ocean, which can swallow up, and cover for ever, the great mountain of thy guilt. Think, too, of the freeness of that mercy, which asks nothing at thy hand; no price, no bribe, to move the heart of God to take pity upon thee, for his heart burns with love of itself. It does not need you to bring anything to make him love you, or to incline him to be ready to forgive you. He is so already from the very force of his own character. God's mercy is free, and full, and rich, and abundant. – Charles Spurgeon

  7. Let Justice Roll Down Like Waters
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    I declare I know of no state of soul more dangerous than to imagine we are born again and sanctified by the Holy Spirit, because we have picked up a few religious feelings. – J.C. Ryle

  8. Amos: God Hates Human Pride
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Pride is a person having too high an opinion of himself. Pride is the first sin that ever entered into the universe, and the last sin that is rooted out. Pride is the worst sin. It is the most secret of all sins. There is no other matter in which the heart is more deceitful and unsearchable. Alas, how much pride the best have in their hearts! Pride is God's most stubborn enemy! There is no sin so much like the devil as pride. It is a secret and subtle sin, and appears in a great many shapes which are undetected and unsuspected. – Jonathan Edwards

  9. Amos: 3 Pictures And A Plumb Line
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Sleep is a parable that God is God and we are mere men. God handles the world quite nicely while a hemisphere sleeps. Sleep is like a broken record that comes around with the same message every day: Man is not sovereign. Man is not sovereign. Man is not sovereign. Don’t let the lesson be lost on you. God wants to be trusted as the great worker who never tires and never sleeps. He is not nearly so impressed with our late nights and early mornings as he is with the peaceful trust that casts all anxieties on him and sleeps. – John Piper

  10. Amos: The Establishment And The Amateur
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Biblical preaching addresses us in such a manner as to bring us under judgment; and it deals with us in such a way that we feel our whole life is involved, and we go out saying, “I can never go back and live just as I did before. This has done something to me; it has made a difference to me. I am a different person as the result of listening to this.” – Martyn Lloyd Jones

  11. Amos: Summer Fruit and Scriptural Famine
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Have we got a Bible still in our hands? Let us prize it, read it and commit its precious truths to mind. It is not an inalienable possession; it may not be ours forever. Is the Bible still preached in our church? Let us love to hear the word of God; let us be urgent to bring others within earshot of it. It is not our guaranteed privilege; the voice of the preacher could be silenced. – J. A. Motyer

  12. Amos- God Inescapable
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Some people greatly struggle to accept the truth that God’s anger is personal, while hypocritically having no reservation in accepting the personal love of God. – Mark Driscoll

  13. Amos- Life Will Rise From The Ruins!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Jesus commenced the gospel age, not with a miracle of vengeance, like that of Moses, who turned water into blood, but with a miracle of generosity, turning water into wine. He does not only supply necessaries, but gives luxuries, and this is highly significant of the kingdom of his grace. The gifts of the covenant are not stinted or stunted, they are neither small in quantity nor in quality. – Charles Spurgeon

Pursuing Prayer

When is the last time you really thought about prayer? Is it just something that decorates your life? A ritual you do before meals, before bed, before making a major decision? When someone else prays in church, do you really know what to do? Should we just listen, try to agree, or pray something ourselves? Perhaps more than anything else in the Christian life, prayer is the thing we do the most but may very well understand the least. This summer we will tackle the subject of prayer by looking at six different facets of communicating with God.


Week 1 Prayer and Praise

Week 2 Prayer and Privilege

Week 3 Prayer and Providence

Week 4 Prayer and Priorities

Week 5 Prayer and Petitions

Week 6 Prayer and Practice

  1. Prayer And Praise
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Prayer is the turning away from ourselves to God in the confidence that he will provide the help we need. Prayer humbles us as needy, and exalts God as wealthy. – John Piper

  2. Prayer and Privilege
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Ah! How often, Christians, hath God kissed you at the beginning of prayer, and spoken peace to you in the midst of prayer, and filled you with joy and assurance upon the close of prayer! – Thomas Brooks

  3. Prayer and Providence
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The same God who has decreed the end has also decreed that his end shall be reached through His appointed means, and one of these is prayer. – A. W. Pink

  4. Prayer and Priorities
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    There is a general kind of praying which fails for lack of precision. It is as if a regiment of soldiers should all fire off their guns anywhere. Possibly somebody would be killed, but the majority of the enemy would be missed. – Charles Spurgeon

  5. Prayer: Practical Reflections
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Prayer is the sincere, sensible, affectionate pouring out of the soul to God, through Christ, in the power of the Holy Spirit, for such things as He has promised, for the good of the church with submission in faith to the will of God. – John Bunyan

Galatians: The Battle Cry Of Freedom

Galatians. 

A short book at 6 chapters, but don't let its brevity fool you. It is a gospel bomb! It has the power to radically transform a life. Listen to what a few spiritual giants have said about it.

John W. Lawrence called it "The Magna Charta of Christian Liberty."

Donald Gray Barnhouse: "Galatians is one of the most important documents in human history."

And perhaps the most striking comment was made by the never-subtle Martin Luther-

"The Epistle to the Galatians is my Epistle. I have betrothed myself to it. It is my Katie - it is my wife."

Do you know that you are free in Christ? Do you know that your relationship with God has NOTHING to do with your sprititual performance? Do you know that all of your guilt for your sins has been taken away? Do you know that add the slightest bit of works or good deeds into your standing with God destroys the good news of the gospel? Do you know that you live by the Spirit's leading not by the law? Do you know that Christ lives inside of you, so that you no longer need to fret about how YOU live your life?

Galatians is for you! It is one of the greatest statements in the cosmos about what it means to truly live. We will be taking our time this fall going through the book verse-by-verse. We hope you come along for the journey!

 

  1. Paul: The Man and his Gospel
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Galatians introduction

    There is more in this (biblical term) peace than barely a cessation of enmity, there is friendship and lovingkindness, for God is either the worst enemy or the best friend. Abraham, being justified by faith, was called the friend of God (James 2:23), which was his honour, but not his peculiar honour: Christ has called his disciples friends (John 15:13). – Matthew Henry

  2. No Other Gospel!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    You cannot touch the gospel and leave the church untouched, because the church is created and lives by the gospel. Indeed, the church’s greatest troublemakers (now as then) are not those outside who oppose, ridicule and persecute, but those inside who try to change the gospel. Conversely, the only way to be a good churchman is to be a good gospel-man. The best way to serve the church is to believe and preach the gospel.
    – John Stott

  3. Radically Transformed By The Gospel
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Such was the state of Saul of Tarsus before his conversion. He was a bigot and a fanatic, whole-hearted in his devotion to Judaism and in his persecution of Christ and the church. Now a man in that mental and emotional state is in no mood to change his mind, or even to have it changed for him by men. No conditioned reflex or other psychological device could convert a man in that state. Only God could reach him—and God did! – John Stott

  4. No Freedom, No Gospel
  5. The Heart Of The Gospel
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    This is the rock where we stand when the dark clouds gather and the floods lick at our feet: justification is by grace alone (not mixed with our merit), through faith alone (not mixed with our works) on the basis of Christ alone (not mingling his righteousness with ours), to the glory of God alone (not ours). - John Piper

  6. The Gospel Brings A New Identity
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    If a man is convicted of a capital crime and is put to death, the law obviously has no more claim on him. He has paid his debt to society. Therefore, even if he were to rise from the dead, he would still be guiltless before the law, which would have no claim on his new life. So it is with the believer who dies in Christ to rise in new life. He is free forever from any claim of the law on him. He paid the law’s demand when he died in Christ. – John MacArthur

  7. We Never Graduate From The Gospel
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Beware of those who pretend that they are going to enrich you, but whose real object is to plunder you. They say that they will give you advanced thought, deeper ideas, a system more congruous with the age Beware of all of them. You will philosophize men into hell, but never into heaven. Modern philosophers will accept anything except the bleeding Substitute for guilty man. – Charles Spurgeon

  8. Before The Gospel There Was...Gospel!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Abraham was a good man, even a great man. He is a model of Old Testament piety. Yet Abraham was not saved by his works, not could he be saved by them. If this man could not be saved by good works, it is certain that you and I, who are far less pious and godly than he was, cannot be saved by them. – James Montgomery Boice

  9. The Other Side Of The Gospel
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Trying to be justified by the Law is like counting money out of an empty purse, eating and drinking from an empty dish and cup, looking for strength and riches where there is nothing but weakness and poverty, laying a burden on someone who is already oppressed to the point of collapse, trying to spend a hundred gold pieces and not having even a pittance! – Martin Luther

  10. The Unalterable Gospel
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Not until the law has bruised and smitten us will we admit our need of the gospel to bind up our wounds. Not until the law has arrested and imprisoned us will we pine for Christ to set us free. Not until the law has condemned and killed us will we call upon Christ the justification and life. Not until the law has driven us to despair of ourselves will we ever believe in Jesus. So not until the law has humbled us even to hell will we return to the gospel to raise us to heaven. – John Stott

  11. The Gospel Creates A New Community
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The law was all the while standing guard over its subjects, watching and checking every attempt to escape, but intending to hand them over in due time to the charge of faith. The law posts its ordinaces, like so many sentinels, round the prisoner’s cell. The cordon is complete. He tries again and again to break out; the iron circle will not yield. The deliverance will yet be his. The day of faith approaches. It dawned long ago in Abraham’s promise. Even now its light shines into his dungeon, and he hears the word of Jeus, “Thy sins are forgiven thee; go in peace.” Law, the stern jailor, has after all been a good friend, if it has reserved him for this. It prevents the sinner escaping to a futile and illusive freedom. – G. G. Findlay

  12. The Gospel's Greatest Benefit
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    There is no slavery in Christ, but only sonship. – Martin Luther

  13. The Gospel Logic Of Conversion
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    There are only two religions in the world. The religion of human achievement and the religion of divine accomplishment. One is the religion of salvation by works, the other is the religion of salvation by faith. One depends upon what man does. The other depends upon what God did. Now of these two religions, most of the world is banking on the religion of human achievement. – John MacArthur

  14. Gospel-Centered Broken Heartedness
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The Word of God falling from the lips of the apostle or minister enters into the heart of the hearer. The Holy Spirit impregnates the Word so that it brings forth the fruit of faith. In this manner every Christian pastor is a spiritual father who forms Christ in the hearts of his hearers. – Martin Luther

  15. A Gospel Allegory
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The law is the most rigorous master in the world, no wise man would love its service; for after all you have done, the law never gives you a "Thank you," for it, but says, "Go on, sir, go on!" The poor sinner trying to be saved by law is like a blind horse going round and round a mill, and never getting a step further, but only being whipped continually; yea, the faster he goes, the more work he does, the more he is tired, so much the worse for him. - Charles Spurgeon

  16. Fight For Gospel Freedom!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Legalism says God will love us if we change. The gospel says God will change us because He loves us. – Tullian Tchividjian

  17. Let The Gospel Work!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    This is a very pleasant comfort for minds afflicted with a sense of sin and afraid of every flaming dart of the devil … your righteousness is not visible, and it is not conscious; but it is hoped for as something to be revealed in due time. Therefore you must not judge on the basis of your consciousness of sin, which terrifies and troubles you, but on the basis of the promise and teaching of faith, by which Christ is promised to you as your perfect and eternal righteousness. – Martin Luther

  18. Protect The Gospel
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    If we would hold fast that which is good, we must not tolerate any doctrine that is not the pure doctrine of Christ’s Gospel. There is a hatred that is downright charity: that is the hatred of erroneous doctrine. There is an intolerance which is downright praiseworthy: that is the intolerance of false teaching in the pulpit. Who would ever think of tolerating a little poison given to him day by day? – J. C. Ryle

  19. Gospel Wisdom For Gospel Freedom
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Most people think freedom is to be free from responsibility so that I may live for myself. But that isn't freedom. That's bondage to my own self-centeredness. True freedom is to be set free from my silly little self in order to give myself in love to God and my fellow human beings. - John Stott

  20. The Battleground Of The Gospel Pt. 1
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Do not despair if you feel the flesh battling against the Spirit or if you cannot make it behave. For you to follow the guidance of the Spirit in all things without interference on the part of the flesh is impossible. You are doing all you can if you resist the flesh and do not fulfill its demands. – Martin Luther

  21. The Battleground Of The Gospel Pt. 2
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    No man overcomes the corruptions of his heart but by the influence of the Spirit of God. – Robert Haldane

  22. Gospel Root And Spiritual Fruit
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The church ought to be filled with the fruit of the Spirit. We ought to be like a garden, the garden of God, embodying the presence of the Spirit, recapturing the love that was present originally in the garden of Eden. And this garden ought to be filled with fruit, new-creation fruit born of the Spirit of God within the lives of his people. Thus the church ought to be an oasis in the midst of a barren wasteland, a place of nourishment and rest and healing and life smack-dab in the middle of this present evil age. – R. Kent Hughes

  23. Gospel-Based Burden-Bearing
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    God's comfort was not given to Paul through his private prayer and waiting upon the Lord, but through the companionship of a friend and through the good news which he brought. Human friendship, in which we bear one another's burdens, is part of the purpose of God for his people. So we should not keep our burdens to ourselves, but rather seek a Christian friend who will help to bear them with us. - John Stott

  24. An Awkward (But Still Gospel) Sermon
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    There are two sorts of seed men sow in this life: good and evil. Two kinds of sowers: spiritual men and carnal men. Two sorts of ground, in which this seed is sown; the flesh and the spirit. Two sorts of harvests, which men are to reap according to the seed; corrpution and life. ~ William Perkins

  25. The Gospel Gets The Last Word
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Paul might have gloried in the life of Christ. Was there ever such another, so benevolent and blameless? He might have gloried in the resurrection of Christ. It is the world’s great hope concerning those who are asleep.He might have gloried in his return, and I doubt not that he did. Yet the apostle selected beyond all these that center of Christianity, that point which is most assailed by its foes, that focus of the world’s derision—the cross. Learn, then, that the highest glory of our holy faith is the cross. The history of grace begins earlier and goes on later, but in the middle point stands the cross. - Charles Spurgeon

The Fullness Of Time: The Sovereignty Of God In Christmas

God easily could have sent his Son when the world was more “ready” for it. Wouldn't God need high-speed satellite transmissions and social media to spread his message? Maybe our societal and technological advances could have “helped God out.” But apparently God did not need any of the things we think are necessary.

Galatians 4:4 that God sent Jesus to earth in the “fullness of time,” that is, the exact moment He wanted his Son to invade human history. Join us this December to marvel at a sovereign God who shaped millennia of history to prepare the world for the Messiah’s arrival.

  1. The Fullness Of Time Pt. 1
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The reservoir of time had to be filled by the inflowing of age after age and, when it was full to the brim, the Son of God appeared! Why the world should have remained in darkness for thousands of years we cannot tell, but this, we are told, that Jesus was sent forth when the fullness of time was come. Our Lord did not come before His time nor behind His time! He was punctual to His hour and cried at the moment—“Lo, I come.” – Charles Spurgeon

  2. The Fullness Of Time Part 2
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    God’s division of the world into different languages hinders the rise of a global, monolithic anti-Christian state that would have the power to simply wipe out all Christians. We often think that the diversity of languages and cultures and peoples and political states is a hindrance to world evangelization—the spread of Christ’s glory. That’s not the way God sees it. God is more concerned about the dangers of human uniformity than he is about human diversity. We humans are far too evil to be allowed to unite in one language or one government. The gospel of the glory of Christ spreads better and flourishes more because of 6,500 languages, not just in spite of it. – John Piper

  3. In Every Place A Home-Base
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    God orchestrated the spreading of millions of Jews throughout the Roman Empire to serve as a key part in the rapid spread of the gospel. As Jewish Christians were forced to flee Jerusalem due to persecution, they were able to travel to almost any part of the world and find a Jewish population and a Jewish synagogue from which to share the gospel of Christ. Because the Jews already knew the Old Testament, the background was set and the timing was perfect for the gospel to spread throughout the nations. – S. Michael Houdmann

  4. All Roads Lead To Rome
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    In the Roman Empire a new unity had come to the world. The pax Romana, the Roman peace, was a very real thing. Kingdoms and states and countries, which had struggled and warred with each other, were gathered into a new unity in the Empire which was Rome. – William Barclay

Good Friday 2014

A look at the similarities between Peter and Judas. Both turned their back on Jesus on the same fateful night. Why did one go on to be a champion of the gospel and the other ended his life in a tragic way?
  1. Judas Damned; Peter Delivered
    Sermon Audio

    A look at the similarities between Peter and Judas. Both turned their back on Jesus on the same fateful night. Why did one go on to be a champion of the gospel and the other ended his life in a tragic way?

Easter 2014

You see, there are two kinds of doubters in the realm of spiritual truth. There are those hard-boiled rationalists who say, "I don't believe it and there's nothing that will make me believe it." Such men enjoy their doubt, talk about it, laugh about it, and get angry when they are refuted. A man like that is not looking for answers; he's looking for an argument. But there is another kind of doubter, the person who says, "I don't believe but I'm willing to believe if I can see for myself." Thomas fits this category. He is not an unbelieving skeptic; rather, he is a wounded believer. – Ray Pritchard

  1. A Scared Skeptic Meets The Scarred Savior
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    You see, there are two kinds of doubters in the realm of spiritual truth. There are those hard-boiled rationalists who say, "I don't believe it and there's nothing that will make me believe it." Such men enjoy their doubt, talk about it, laugh about it, and get angry when they are refuted. A man like that is not looking for answers; he's looking for an argument. But there is another kind of doubter, the person who says, "I don't believe but I'm willing to believe if I can see for myself." Thomas fits this category. He is not an unbelieving skeptic; rather, he is a wounded believer. – Ray Pritchard

Awestruck By Jesus

Are you USED to Jesus? Or are you awestruck by him? Revelation 1 presents one of the most stunning portraits of Jesus in all of his glory.

  1. Awestruck By Jesus
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    How did we end up so comfortable with God? How did our awe of God get reduced to a lukewarm appreciation of God? How did God become a pal instead of a heart-stopping presence? How can we think of Jesus without remembering His ground-shaking, thunder-crashing, stormy exit on the cross? Why aren’t we continually catching our breath and saying, “This is no ordinary God!” – Mike Yaconelli

The Book Of Joshua

JOSHUA, the first of twelve historical books (Joshua-Esther), forges a link between the death of the great leader Moses and the remainder of Israel’s history. Through three major military campaigns involving more than thirty enemy armies, the people of Israel learn a crucial lesson under Joshua’s capable leadership: victory comes through faith in God and obedience to His word, rather than through military might or numerical superiority.


The title of this book is appropriately named after its central figure, Joshua. His original name is Hoshea, “Salvation” (Numbers 13:8); but Moses evidently changes it to Yehoshua, “Yahweh Is Salvation” (Numbers 13:16). He is also called Yeshua, a shortened form of Yehoshua. This is the Hebrew equivalent of the Greek name Iesous (Jesus). Thus, the Greek title given to the book in the Septuagint is Iesous Naus, “Joshua the Son of Nun.” The Latin title is Liber Josue, the “Book of Joshua.”


Joshua’s name is symbolic of the fact that although he is the leader of the Israelite nation during the conquest, the Lord is the Conqueror.

  1. A Time For Believing God's Promises
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Moses may die; God’s promise lives on. There is the passing of an era yet the endurance of a promise. Yahweh’s fidelity does not hinge on the achievements of men, however gifted they may be, nor does it evaporate in the face of funerals or rivers. – Dale Ralph Davis

  2. Be Strong And Courageous
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Our God's tender love for His servants makes Him concerned for the state of their inward feelings. He desires them to be of good courage. Some esteem it a small thing for a believer to be vexed with doubts and fears, but God thinks not so. From this text it is plain that our Master would not have us entangled with fears. He would have us without carefulness, without doubt, without cowardice. Our Master does not think so lightly of our unbelief as we do. – Charles Spurgeon

     

  3. Unity And Rest
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    One hundred pianos all tuned to the same fork are automatically tuned to each other? They are of one accord by being tuned, not to each other, but to another standard to which each one must individually bow. So one hundred worshipers meeting together, each one looking away to Christ, are in heart nearer to each other than they could possibly be, were they to become “unity” conscious and turn their eyes away from God to strive for closer fellowship. - A. W. Tozer

  4. Sophisticated Lady- She's Chic But She's Not Shady
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Rahab was a Gentile. She was not one of Abraham’s physical descendants and yet was accepted into Israel, God’s people. She foreshadows the great ingrafting of Gentiles into the church now happening under Christ. Like her, those who are outside the people of God today can join His kingdom if they place their faith in Christ alone. – R. C. Sproul

     

  5. No "Mini" Exodus
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    There cannot be a doubt that this wonderful sight must have been received with feelings of fear, leading the Israelites more directly to acknowledge that they were saved in the midst of death. For what was that collected heap but a grave in which the whole multitude would have been buried, had the waters resumed their naturally liquid state? – John Calvin

     

     

  6. Remember!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    There could be no need for this loving exhortation, if there were not a fearful supposition that our memories might prove treacherous, and our remembrance superficial in its character, or changing in its nature. Nor is this a bare supposition: it is, alas, too well confirmed in our experience, not as a possibility, but as a lamentable fact. – Charles Spurgeon

  7. God's People And The Sacraments
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    We also need to learn Israel’s lesson. Americans are always anxious to rush ahead with some program, and the larger the effort and the faster it is executed, the better. We need to learn that this is not always God’s way. What we do is important. But what we are is more important still . It is more important that God have our hearts and minds than our swords. – James Montgomery Boice

     

     

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  8. Joshua Meets The True Commander
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    He is the commander, the supreme strategist, and immediately the whole emphasis changes. The burdens are no longer carried by Joshua alone. The question is not whether the Lord is on our side or not, but whether we are submitted to his sovereign rule and authority because he is the Lord of earth and Heaven to whom all power belongs. – David Jackman

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  9. Operation Jericho
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Faith has nothing to do with feelings or with impressions, with improbabilities or with outward experiences. If we desire to couple such things with faith, then we are no longer resting on the Word of God, because faith needs nothing of the kind. Faith rests on the naked Word of God. When we take Him at His Word, the heart is at peace. – George Muller

     

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  10. Hard Questions About God's Justice
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    It is because we are sinners, and because God so often showers us with grace, that we lose sight of the justice of God, and the blackness of sin. When we read about the execution of the Canaanites we ought not to ask, “How could God do this?” but “Why does He not kill us all?” The shocking part of the story of the conquest of Canaan is God’s love for His rebellious people, not His just wrath toward other rebels. – R. C. Sproul

     

  11. Sin In The Camp
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    You say that you can handle your secret sins, that there is no one hurt by them. But you may as well ask the lion to let you put your head into his mouth. You cannot regulate his jaws: neither can you regulate sin. Once done, you cannot tell when you will be destroyed. You may put your head in and out a great many times; but one of these days it will be a costly venture. – Charles Spurgeon

     

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  12. Wrath Diverted- Victory Won!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    If there is no ultimate destruction of all God’s enemies, there can be no guarantee of the ultimate inviolability of his eternal kingdom of love, joy, and peace. 4 The opposition has to be vanquished and removed if the kingdom of God is to rule as the new creation. – David Jackman

     

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  13. People Of The Book
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The Bible tells one story and points to one figure. It narrates how God rescues His world that we wrecked, and exalts Christ as the One who accomplishes the rescue. In the Old Testament God revealed Himself through types and shadows, promises and prophecies. In the New Testament God reveals Himself in Christ, who is the substance of every shadow and the fulfillment of every promise and prophecy. The Old Testament predicts God’s Rescuer; the New Testament presents God’s Rescuer. Therefore, the whole Bible – both the Old and New Testaments – is all about God’s Rescuer. - Tullian Tchividjian

  14. Duped!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Now it wasn’t that Joshua and the elders didn’t ask the right questions; they were suspicious at just the right points. It was not that they were sloppy in their investigation but that they were alone in their decision. It wasn’t that they didn’t think but that they didn’t pray. They did not have because they did not ask (James 4:2). – Dale Ralph Davis

  15. Yahweh- The Promise Keeper
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Moreover, it is a charming thought that our good God designedly gives us promises of good things that we may enjoy them twice; first by faith, and then by fruition. - Charles Spurgeon

  16. Yahweh- The Warrior
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    He will bend his omnipotence to fight for his own when they are in his will, doing his work, and seeking his greater glory, however strong the opposition may be and however extraordinary the exercise of his providence may need to be. – David Jackman

  17. Stage One Accomplished!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Everything about God is great, vast, incomparable. He never forgets, never fails, never falters, never forfeits His word. To every declaration of promise or prophecy the Lord has exactly adhered, every engagement of covenant or threatening He will make good. – A. W. Pink

  18. The Proof Of His Promises
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The mortality of his servants never handicaps the everlasting God. – Dale Ralph Davis

  19. Caleb-Like Faith
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The majority measured the giants against their own strength; Caleb and Joshua measured the giants against God. The majority trembled; the two triumphed. The majority had great giants but a little God. Caleb had a great God and little giants. – Alan Redpath

  20. The Lion's Tribe
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The “Shiloh,” that is “the One to whom Judah’s scepter and ruler’s staff belong” appears here as the ultimate embodiment and virtually as the eternalizer of Judah’s preeminence among the tribes. – Geerhardus Vos

  21. God's People Stumble- God Does Not!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Israel evidently had functioned fairly well in the initial onslaught of the conquest, in the united push under Joshua. With the major crisis past, the time came for tribes to complete the conquest, remaining faithful in Yahweh’s little-by-little work. Somehow, we relish the call for heroism but not that for durability. We find being faithful in little more annoying than satisfying. – Dale Ralph Davis

  22. Finally- Let God Be Worshipped!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    We’re here to be worshippers first and workers only second. We take a convert and immediately make a worker out of him. God never meant it to be so. God meant that a convert should learn to be a worshiper, and after that he can learn to be a worker…The work done by a worshiper will have eternity in it. – A. W. Tozer

  23. Cities Of Refuge- Cities Of Rest
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The way to Christ is short: it is but a simple renunciation of self and a laying hold of Him to be our all in all.

    – A. W. Pink

  24. How We Worship God Matters!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Nothing makes God more supreme and more central than when a people are utterly persuaded that nothing is going to bring satisfaction to their aching hearts besides God. This conviction breeds a people who passionately long for God on Sunday morning. They are not confused about why they are here. They do not see songs and prayers and sermons as mere traditions or mere duties. They see them as means of getting to God or God getting to them for more of His fullness. - John Piper

  25. God Over All
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The only way to free ourselves from the destructive influence of counterfeit gods is to turn back to the true one. The living God, who revealed himself both at Mount Sinai and on the Cross, is the only Lord who, if you find him, can truly fulfill you, and, if you fail him, can truly forgive you. – Tim Keller

  26. Choose You This Day
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    As for the future, can you suggest anything which can arise that shall render it necessary for you to mutiny, or desert the old flag to serve under another captain? If life be long--he changes not. When we are sick, what more do we want than Jesus to make our bed in our sickness? When we die, is it not written that ”nothing shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord!" We say with Peter, "Lord, to whom shall we go?” – Charles Spurgeon

  27. The End Of An Era
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    God writes with a pen that never blots, speaks with a tongue that never slips, acts with a hand that never fails. – Charles Spurgeon

The Cost Of Christmas

Forbes Magazine informs us that the average American family spends approximately $800 on Christmas gifts each year. When you add in food, cards, a tree, decorations etc.- it can get pretty out of hand. Some people spend months paying off their credit cards just from all the spending it took to get ready for one day of the year! Needless to say- people are stressed out!

But what if we step out of ourselves for a minute? What if we think about what the true cost of Christmas is for someone other than us? Have you ever considered what Christmas cost God? What about Jesus? These are not questions we are accustomed to asking when we feel our bills getting heavier and our wallets getting lighter, are they? 

This Christmas Season we will look at the TRUE cost of Christmas:

December 7-    What Christmas Cost God

December 14-   What Christmas Cost Jesus?

December 21-   What Christmas Cost The World?

Christmas Eve-  What Christmas Cost Me

  1. What Christmas Cost God
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Christ’s greatest glory is that the Father loves Him. Sweet are the songs of the saved on earth and blessed are the anthems of the redeemed in Heaven. But to Jesus, the best reward which is possible lies in this word—“Therefore does My Father love Me.” Before me, in this Divine love, I see a great deep, which I may not attempt to explore—I have but brushed the surface as with a swallow’s wing. – Charles Spurgeon

  2. What Christmas Cost Jesus
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The incarnation was God's locking himself into death row. Christ did not risk death. He embraced it.

    – John Piper

  3. What Christmas Cost The World
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The lover of light is not some intrinsically superior person. If he or she enjoys the light, it is because all that has been performed, for which there is no shame or conviction, has been done through God in union with Him, and therefore by His power. – D. A. Carson

1 Peter- The Church In A Hostile World

1 Peter is a letter from the apostle to the first century church who had been scattered throughout the ancient Roman empire and was living under intense hostility. If anyone knew persecution, it was Peter. He was brutally mistreated and eventually killed for preaching the message of his Master. He learned the lessons of finding contementment and security in Christ alone- since he certainly couldn't attain them in this hostile world. 1 Peter is a timely message in that the church is never to feel "at home" in a world that hates the gospel of Christ.

 

  1. Rejected By The World- Chosen By God
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The case could be made that if one were to be ship wrecked on a desert island and allowed to have only one of the New Testament letters as a companion, then 1 Peter would be the ideal choice, so rich is its teaching, so warm its spirit, and so comforting its message in a hostile environment. – I Howard Marshall

  2. The Past, Present and Future Security of Our Salvation
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    By the resurrection of Christ, God has given life, not only to him, but to us. We are given new birth by God; he fathers us by the resurrection of his Son. In Christ’s triumph God makes all things new, beginning with us. – Edmund Clowney

  3. God's Good Purposes In Our Trials
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    God promises no immunity from crosses. – Richard Sibbes

  4. Things Into Which Angels Long To Look
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    What a salvation! It is the preoccupation of prophets, it is the preoccupation of the Holy Spirit, the preoccupation of the Apostles, and it is even the preoccupation of the angels. How about you? That’s one reason we’re here, to focus again on the glory of our salvation. – John MacArthur

  5. What's The Next Step After Grace?
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Hope in God's promises, therefore, is not a wishful longing but a faith-filled confidence for the future. It is simply impossible to trust one of God's promises and not anticipate its coming true. To know God is to trust Him. And to trust God is to trust His promises. And to trust God's promises is to be sure of their fulfillment. This assurance concerning the future, anchored in God's promises, is what the Bible calls "hope.” – Scott Hafemann

  6. Kingdom Living In A Dying World
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    To be holy 'as God is holy' includes a full and pervading holiness that reaches to every aspect of our personalities. It involves not only avoiding outward sin but also maintaining an instinctive delight in God and his holiness as an undercurrent of heart and mind throughout the day. – Wayne Grudem

  7. Love! Since Only The Gospel Lasts
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    So how does God teach us to love? By putting us around unlovely people. There is no other way to learn to love. If you only hang around nice, sweet, fun people, you’ll never learn to love. That’s why God has some of you in marriages to some very difficult people. That’s why you’re working around some people you don’t particularly like. You can only learn to love by being around hard-to-love people. And God is the one who arranged it. – Ray Pritchard

  8. A Spiritual House
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Peter calls him a living Stone; he would not have us think of his Lord as inert marble! Christ is the living Stone, however, not just because he is a living person, but because he is alive from the dead as the risen Lord. God set his cornerstone in place by the resurrection. – Edmund Clowney

  9. Make Them Look Up!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Christianity is not a settle-in-and-live-at-peace-with-this-world-the-way-it-is kind of religion. Christianity is war. It is a declaration of all-out combat against our own sinful impulses. To become a Christian is to wake up to the reality that our soul—the eternal joy of our soul—is at stake. Therefore, Christianity is mortal combat for true and lasting joy. – John Piper

  10. The Submission Strategy
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    When the church takes a stance that emphasizes political activism and social moralizing, it always diverts energy and resources away from evangelization. Such an antagonistic position toward the established secular culture invariably leads believers to feel hostile not only to unsaved government leaders with whom they disagree, but also antagonistic toward the residents of that culture--neighbors and fellow citizens they ought to love, pray for, and share the gospel with. To me it is unthinkable that we become enemies of the very people we seek to win to Christ, our potential brothers and sisters in the Lord. – John MacArthur

  11. Submitting To Bad Bosses
  12. Jesus: Our Standard And Savior (no audio of this message)
    Sermon Notes

    The example of Christ is a saving example. Peter does not hold forth the meekness of Christ simply as an abstract pattern. Christ’s suffering is our model because it is our salvation. It does not simply guide us; it is the root of all our motivation to follow. Remove Christ’s atonement from the passage and its point would be lost. – Edmund Clowney

  13. A Portrait Of A Beautiful Wife
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    A woman was given not for a man’s whims but for his character. She elevates him in true masculinity. It takes a woman to make a real man. This is God’s design, and we tamper with it at our peril. - Richard and Sharon Phillips

  14. Husbands: Treasure Your Wives
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    There is no selfishness in the love that Jesus has for His church. Jesus has never abused, tyrannized, exploited, or belittled his bride. – R.C. Sproul

  15. A New Humanity
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    A ‘good day’ in a television beer commercial pictures friends imbibing in the sunset at a fishing lodge. ‘It doesn’t get any better than this,’ they say. A ‘good day’ in the book of Acts shows Paul and Silas in a Greek prison, their backs bleeding and their feet in stocks. They are singing psalms at midnight— perhaps Psalm 34! – Edmund Clowney

  16. How To Save The World
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Churches today that experience little persecution need Peter’s instruction; in a future nearer than they suppose they may find themselves suffering with the rest of Christ’s afflicted church in the world. – Edmund Clowney

  17. Jesus: Mighty To Save
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    …a wonderful text is this, and a more obscure passage perhaps than any other in the New Testament, so that I do not know for a certainty just what Peter means. - Martin Luther

  18. Living In Light Of Christ's Sacrifice
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    To be a follower of the Crucified Christ means, sooner or later, a personal encounter with the cross. And the cross always entails loss. – Elizabeth Elliot

  19. The End Of The World As God Knows It
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    If God be glorified, does it really matter where we are? What becomes of us is of small 
consequence compared with bringing glory to his great name. – Charles Spurgeon

  20. Don't Let These Trials Surprise You
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Once it seemed strange to the Apostle Peter that his Master should think of suffering. Now he thinks it strange that He could have imagined anything else. - F. B. Meyer

  21. Shepherds And Their Sheep
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    A pastor must labor in the whole-heartedness of the Chief Shepherd Himself, Who could say, ‘My food is to do the will of Him that sent me, and to accomplish His work. – C. E. B. Crainfield

  22. Humility, Dependence and Spiritual Warfare
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Just as water seeks to fill the lowest places, so God fills you with His glory and power when He finds you empty and abased. - Andrew Murray

  23. This Is The True Grace Of God
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The entire Christian life is one of grace - God's daily bestowal of blessings, strength, help, forgiveness, and fellowship with himself, all of which we need, none of which we ever deserve. All is of grace, every day. From continual trust in that grace and from continual obedience empowered by it Christians must not move: rather, they must stand fast in it - until the day of their death. - Wayne Grudem

Easter 2015

Jesus' resurrection demonstrates that the cross did what Jesus promised it would. Sin is paid for! Death is conquered! Satan is defeated!

  1. Jesus Triumphs Over The Forces Of Darkness
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The enemy will never allow the spoil to be divided among the conquerors as long as he has any strength remaining. We may gather from our text of a surety, that Jesus Christ has totally routed, thoroughly defeated once for all, and put to retreat all his enemies, or else he would not have divided the spoil. – Charles Spurgeon

  2. The Death Of Death
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Death in its substance has been removed, and only the shadow of it remains… Nobody is afraid of a shadow, for a shadow cannot block a man’s pathway for even a moment. The shadow of a dog can’t bite; the shadow of a sword can’t kill. – Charles Spurgeon

Good Friday 2015

Jesus enters into Satanic darkness on Good Friday. He was not at the wrong place at the wrong time. He was not the victim of political circumstance. The devil was working feverishly to make Jesus' final hours excruciating.

  1. Jesus Enters Satan's Darkness
    Sermon Audio

    But here he is in Luke 22:3 entering into Judas and leading him to betray the Lord and bring him to the cross. Why the about face? Why try to divert him from the cross and then take the initiative to bring him to the cross? We are not told. Here is my effort at an answer: Satan saw his efforts to divert Jesus from the cross failing. Time after time, Jesus kept the course. His face was set like flint to die, and Satan concludes that there is no stopping him. Therefore he resolves that if he can’t stop it, he will at least make it as ugly and painful and as heartbreaking as possible. Not just death, but death by betrayal. Death by abandonment. Death by denial (see Luke 22:31-32). If he could not stop it, he would drag others into it and do as much damage as he could. It was a spectacular sequence of sins that brought Jesus to the cross. - John Piper

The Original Christmas Carols

When the Bible was translated into Latin, four “songs” from Luke chapter 1 and 2 were labeled by Latin terms that come out of the passages:

11/29 The Magnificant- Mary’s Song (Luke 1:46-55)

12/6 The Benedictus - Zechariah’s Song (Luke 1:67-80)

12/13 The Gloria In Excelsis- The Angels Song (Luke 2:14)

12/20 The Nunc Dimittis- Simeon’s Song (Luke 2:27-34)

  1. The Magnificat
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Mary’s song teaches us that this is how God always does business. He doesn’t do business with the proud. He doesn’t run with the rulers of the world. He doesn’t side with the rich. God is at home with the humble, the tired, the weak, and the lowly of this world. He does business with those who fear his name. – Ray Pritchard

  2. The Benedictus
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The truth is that the God of the Bible is the kind of God whose greatest delight comes not from making demands but from meeting needs. – Sam Storms

  3. The Gloria In Excelsis
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Now is come the highest degree of glory to God, by the appearing of His Son Jesus Christ in the world. He by His life and death on the cross will glorify God's attributes--justice, holiness, mercy, and wisdom--as they never were glorified before. – J. C. Ryle

  4. The Nunc Dimittis
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    To see Jesus is to see God's salvation. They are inseparable. There is joy, even in the face of death, when one has seen the source of life. Simeon's job as a sentinel for Messiah is done. The Lord can take him home. Simeon pictures a faithful servant who is at home in God's purpose and plan, even when his time is up. – Darrell Bock

2nd Peter: Final Words

Peter's last letter. Unlike his first letter which is friend Silas helped him compose it (1 Peter 5:12), Peter apparently writes this one himself. He gives us his heart as an apostle, a pastor and a devoted follower of Christ. He burns with a passion for the church to stay gospel-centered in the midst of a corrupt generation. He minces no words when he talks about the danger of false teachers, but he could not be more clear about the church's coming victory when Christ returns to set everything right.

  1. Vintage Christianity
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Our faith is equal to that of our Lord’s earliest and closest followers. While we may be living thousands of years later, our faith is no way deficient or inferior. We have apostolic faith — nothing less. Our faith is given equal standing. And though we have fallen, we too can know what it is to stand with them. – David Helm

  2. All We Have- All We Need
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    We may have as much of God as we will. Christ puts the key of the treasure-chamber into our hand, and bids us take all that we want. If a man is admitted into the bullion vault of a bank and told to help himself, and comes out with one cent, whose fault is it that he is poor? – Alexander Maclaren

  3. How To Confirm Your Election
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    For we cannot expect to go to heaven asleep. We are not taken there against our wills. It is not our will that accomplishes our salvation; but still, grace saves no man to make him like a log of wood or a block of stone; grace makes man active. – Charles Spurgeon

  4. Experience Is Good; The Bible Is Better
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    We must stress that the basis for our faith is neither experience nor emotion but the truth as God has given it in verbalized, prepositional form in the Scripture and which we first of all apprehend with our minds. – Francis Schaeffer

  5. Beware Of False Teachers
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The raw material for a devil is an angel. The raw material for the son of perdition was an apostle; and the raw material for the most horrible of apostates is one who is almost a saint. – Charles Spurgeon

  6. Damning The Damned, Saving The Saved
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    We may leave the "how" with the LORD and be content to rejoice in the fact that He will, in some way or other, bring His own people through all the dangers, trials, and temptations for this mortal life to His own right hand in glory. – Charles Spurgeon

  7. Profiling False Teachers Pt 1
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    No person, no matter how clever and deceitful, can indefinitely hide a character that is rotten and out of tune with God. Calvin said, "Nothing is more difficult to counterfeit than virtue." It demands too much. It demands more than any person has in himself, and when God's divine provision and power are absent the charade cannot last long. – John MacArthur

  8. Profling False Teachers Pt. 2
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    It is likely, then, that Peter was not saying that they “barely” escaped the clutches of the world but that they had recently escaped it. The false teachers were crafty. They targeted those who were unstable and liable to be taken in by their schemes. – Thomas Schreiner

  9. The Folly Of Mocking God's Plans
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Creation was the fruit of a word. Jehovah said, "Light be," and light was. The Lord's acts are sublime in their ease and instantaneousness. "What kind of a word is this?" This was the wondering enquiry of old, and it may be ours to this day. – Charles Spurgeon

  10. Between Two Worlds
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    It might seem that we are taking a massive risk in presenting such a God to our non-Christian friends, and we might fear that they will call us primitive and naïve. But the Bible starts and finishes with a God who creates a universe and then creates a new universe; who makes us in his image and then remakes us in his image.

    - R. C. Lucs and Christopher Green

  11. Growing In Grace
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Grace is the wealth of God's kindness; the riches of his mercy; the soothing ointment of his forgiveness; the free and undeserved, but lavishly offered hope of eternal life. Grace is what we crave when we are guilt-laden. Grace is what we must have when we come to die. – John Piper

GRACE

Why does God love us? What do we do to secure his love? What can we do to lose it? How much of our "Christian image" of ideal faith is nothing more than a certain set of standards promoted in a certain evangelical subculture. What would our lives, our churches, our Christian "movements" look like if we really revelled in the grace of God alone?

We are devoting April of 2016 to considering these questions. We hope you will be joyfully persuaded that his grace is enough!

  1. No Condemnation
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    If heaven were by merit, it would never be heaven to me, for if I were in it I should say, “I am sure I am here by mistake; I am sure this is not my place; I have no claim to it.” But if it be of grace and not of works, then we may walk into heaven with boldness. – Charles Spurgeon

  2. Peace: Let’s Not Fight For What We Already Have
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The good news is that Christ frees us from the need to obnoxiously focus on our goodness, our commitment, and our correctness. Religioun has made us obsessive almost beyond endurance. Jesus invited us to a dance...and we've turned in into a march of soldiers, always checking to see if we're doing it right and are in step and in line with the other soldiers. We know a dance would be more fun, but we believe we must go through hell to get to heaven, so we keep marching. – Steve Brown

  3. Live Free Or Die Trying
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    You ought to live your life with such freedom and joy that uptight Christians will doubt your salvation.

    – Steve Brown

  4. Gracing One Another
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The only people who get better are people who know that, if they never get better, God will love them anyway. – Steve Brown

Judges: Fallen People < Faithful God

We return to the ancient soils of Israel- long before they had a king, a temple or international fame. Right on the heels of Joshua and the conquest generation, God's people fail over and over again to fulfill their role as God's missionary nation to the world. Instead they turned away from God to worship idols and they suffered unspeakable consequences for their abandonment of the one they were made to worship. Still, God was faithful and showed mercy EVERY TIME they cried out to him for deliverance. We learn that man is incapable of fulfilling God's law in his own power and that God takes it upon himself to do for man what we couldn't do for ourselves.

  1. God Never Fails Us- Even Though We Fail Him
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The book of Judges shows us that the Bible is not a “Book of Virtues;” it is not full of inspirational stories. Why? Because the Bible (unlike the books on which other religions are based) is not about following moral examples. It is about a God of mercy and long-suffering, who continually works in and through us despite our constant resistance to his purposes. – Tim Keller

  2. The Endless Story
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    The old gods are still with us. They have simply changed their clothes so that they merge more easily into the modern crowd. They still claim to provide meaning to life, to explain the universe, and to provide the basis for personal security. They still demand wholehearted commitment from their worshippers. Christians ought to be free of them; for a truly Christian view of the world provides the basis for such freedom. - Iain Provan

  3. How God Saves
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    When God raised up a savior for Israel he was not reacting to any repentance on Israel’s part. If anything, he was responding to their misery rather than to to their sorrow, to their pain rather than to their penitence.

    - Dale Ralph Davis

  4. The Lefty
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    God is a God of grace, not works. He takes and uses people who are at the margins of society—in order to show that salvation is from him, not from our own human ability. – Tim Keller

  5. A Great Woman And Her Greater God
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    God has often chosen to raise up godly women as agents of change in the history of His church. But the significant factor about Deborah, under the influence of the Lord and as His channel of revelation, is that she did not usurp the man’s role. She did not lead the army. That was God’s summons to Barak, through her, and she would not step beyond the task which God had given her to do. – David Jackman

  6. Salvation Must Be Sung!
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Our songs are not the cause of our loss of the sense of God’s greatness, though songs are surprisingly influential. No, our songs reflect this loss. Singing God-centered hymns is desirable, but more than that is needed. We sing what we feel, what we believe. When once we rediscover the greatness of God, we will sing it. Our song will echo our conviction. - Tom Wells

  7. Why A Hero Needs A Hero
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Gideon was very specifically asking God to show him that he was not one of the forces of nature (like the other gods), but was sovereign over the forces of nature. Gideon, then, was not looking for “little signs” to help him make a decision. He was really seeking to understand the nature of God. We have to remember that he did not have the Bible like we now have. He was very specifically addressing the places where his faith was weak and uninformed. – Tim Keller

  8. Making God's Power Obvious
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    Human nature is such that, if there is the tiniest opportunity to boast in our work, we will. – Tim Keller

  9. Man's Victories Never Last
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    This shadow of inconsistency and of disappointment frequently hangs over God's servants. This is not to excuse the sins or errors of the leaders of God's people. But let it temper our expectations, let it cushion our despair, and let it lift our gaze to the Leader of God's elect, who does not disappoint, in whom is no sin, and against whom no charges can be brought. We will never find perfection of office except in our Lord Jesus Christ. – Dale Ralph Davis

  10. Why Isn't This A Shakespeare Play?
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    God frequently judges in this way, using evil men to destroy evil men, evil nations to wipe out other evil nations. Judges 9 teaches us something very important: there is no fellowship in evil; evil has no lasting cohesion; it does not care for its own (it only uses its own). - Dale Ralph Davis

  11. Scorned, Rejected Then Embraced
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    That is why we have this seeming tension between judgment and grace in Scripture, a tension not merely in the texts of Scripture but in the character of Yahweh himself, for he is the God whose holiness demands he judge his people yet whose heart moves him to spare his people. If it is a tension, its origin is in the bosom of God himself. – Dale Ralph Davis

  12. How To Handle Hard Texts
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    So many Christians are haphazard and lazy rather than diligent in their approach to God’s Word. They don’t systematically read, study, or memorize it. If they read it at all, they jump from passage to passage, pulling verses out of context. They aren’t seeking to know God and how He wants them to think, to believe, and to relate to others. – Steven Cole

  13. Stars, Extras and Providence
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    It was through pride that the Devil became the Devil. It is the complete, anti-God state of mind.
    - C. S. Lewis

God's Community

We are going to focus on the theme of community in September. How do you view the church? Is it a building? An event? A day of the week? Often without knowing it, we see church through a pretty modern and invidualistic future. How did the church describe itself for the first 3 centuries of its existence? It was illegal to build a church building, and it is pretty unlikely churches were posting their service times. The church is a network of relationships that God indwells, empowers and sends into the world to change people's lives.

  1. God Is a Community
  2. God Works Through Community
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    People need to encounter the church as a network of relationships rather than a meeting you attend or a place you enter. Mission must involve not only contact between unbelievers and individual Christians, but between unbelievers and the Christian community. -  Tim Chester and Steve Timmis

  3. God Delights In Community
    Sermon Audio Sermon Notes

    I’ve heard it said among believers: 'God loves you and has a wonderful plan for your life.' I suppose it would be much more appropriate to say it this way: 'God loves His Son and has a wonderful plan for Him, to bring all the nations to His feet as Lord of all, and He loves you and me enough to give us a place in it.'” - David Bryant