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Monday, November 13, 2017

Faith Is a Matter of the Heart

The Spirit never stops working. He continues to challenge us to walk with God. That journey often takes us to places we don't want to go to get us to a place where He will bless us. God's first place to bless us is with salvation. However, He is not finished with us when we trust in Him. He continues to bring us to trust Him more. He gives us purpose, hope and a future. He gives us life when we go to the place He wants to bless us.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Don't Forget to Look in the Mirror

Most people think that becoming a Christian will make them better people. That was not God's intention. He makes a new creation out of those who come to know Him. Believers are called to love like God does. When believers look in the mirror and see less themselves acting less than God's creation they must say, "I am better than this!"

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

When the Secrets Come Out

Don't we demand justice when we feel that we or someone we care about is wronged? Where does that need from justice come from? Could it come from being created in the image of God? God is a holy God. His holiness requires that He is just. His justice requires that He is thorough. So, does God seek to condemn us or simply allow us to be condemned or is He seeking to save and bless us? Maybe we will realize the fullness of God's grace when the secrets come out.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

The Good Written on Our Hearts

Does saying that we are totally depraved mean that there is no good in us? Absolutely not! It means that we don't have any good that we can do that will save us. So, there is good within people. In fact, it is there is good in everyone. It is that good that draws us to God.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Attendance Is Not Enough (Part 3)

What keeps the Christian from the wonderful things that God has for us? It happens when the Christian fails to do as God says. This message speaks to three needs that God will supply when we apply His Word. So, if you have a physical need, have a decision you need to make or you are oppressed by defeat, depression or loneliness, this message is for you.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Attendance Is Not Enough (Part 2)

I have read so many blogs from people who quit going to church. They justify their absence. They never tell the whole story. They seem to go to church for what they are getting from it. They seem to think that going to church is the end product of their faith. They don't know that attendance isn't enough to produce what God wants to produce. Sure, they can stay exactly where they are right now without attendance at church. That's just not what God has fully planned for them.

Monday, October 2, 2017

Attendance Is Not Enough (Part 1)

God has great plans for us. He wants to give us a hope and a future but many people who call themselves believers aren't living like that. Why is that?

Monday, September 25, 2017

As Just as It Gets

Does God treat each of us equally? He doesn't keep the rules for all of us. He doesn't call us, answer us or gift us equally. God has different plans for each of us. He treats us all the same by making sure that He treats us in equal love. He has plans for us. Great plans.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Greatest Comes out of Humility

I suppose I have tried to be humble because I know that God gives grace to humble but opposes the proud. I need His grace. I have no great natural qualities that would allow me to do anything significant in my life. I am not especially smart, handsome or charismatic. My voice is far from mellifluous.  I am short in stature and I often stutter when I speak. Yet, even all these special qualities haven't made me humble.

God does great things with humble people. He allowed Joseph (Old Testament) to be thrown in a pit by his brothers, sold into slavery and falsely accused into prison before he would become the second in command in Egypt. Samson was blinded and a slave before he accomplished his greatest feat. Peter denied his Lord. Paul was blinded on the Damascus Road. And consider Moses:

Numbers 12:3 (NIV)
3  (Now Moses was a very humble man, more humble than anyone else on the face of the earth.) 


Think of the greatness of this man!

What is humility? I believe it is setting aside yourself for someone more important. It is seeing that someone as more important than yourself. In fact, it is not elevating yourself or promoting yourself. It is knowing that everyone else has something to contribute rather than trying to do it all on your own. It is really believing these things. Acting humble does not necessarily make you humble.

Few people will pray for humility because they know that God may just give it to them. He may allow them to become blind, infirm or suffer loss after loss until humility appears. Many people would like to be humble if they didn't have to go through the process of getting there.

What can God do with a humble person? He can lead a nation, bring a whole people out of oppression and start a spiritual awakening to His presence and His will that will encompass the world.

I want to be humble, but I am not really humble yet. I believe God would do great things if I was.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Getting Right, Doing Right, Being Right

This message describes the three judgements mentioned in the Bible. It explains the differences between them. It tells what a person who has gotten right with God must do. It explains what the result of getting right and doing right is. There should be peace in the life of the believer.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

I Have a Hate Log in My Eye

We are certainly a country divided. However, we are as divided in what we say and what we actually do as we are politically. The people who castigate others for racial hatred are embracing political hatred. It is as if there is virtue in hating the haters.

Recently I made a point in a sermon: "The logs in our eyes keep us from seeing the logs in our eyes." So many people fail to see their own hatred when they denounce the hatred in others. If people are not born hating, who taught these people to hate like this? Let's not blame this on someone else. We are responsible for our own hatred.

Things don't have to be this way. It is possible to turn away from the hatred. It is a conscious decision. It is a spiritual one, too.

I do not have the ability to love some people. It is not within my flesh. Asking me to love someone that I naturally despise is like asking me to slam dunk a basketball. I can work at it and possibly get closer than I am today but slam dunking a basketball is not in my future no matter how hard I try. I need help.

So, I must rely on the One who has promised to be my Helper,  the Holy Spirit. The Spirit changes me from within. Here's an example.

A few years ago there was another pastor that I didn't like. (I hate to use the word hate It is more truthful than I would like to admit.) So, I criticized him for everything he did. I said that he made believers doubt their salvation when he had a large number of baptisms. I said that he didn't respect God when he wore his hate in the church sanctuary. I said that he was full of himself. The man couldn't do anything right in my eyes.

The Holy Spirit convicted me of my feelings toward this man. The Bible clearly revealed it.

1 John 4:11-12 (ESV) 11  Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. 12  No one has ever seen God; if we love one another, God abides in us and his love is perfected in us.

The love of God was not being perfected in me because of my hatred for this man. I was like one making a whole lot of noise but saying nothing when I spoke of love (1 Corinthians 13:1) The problem was within me and I needed to be changed.

So, I committed to praying for this man every time I passed by his church. That means I did so about ten to twelve times a week. I prayed for good things to happen in his church. I prayed that he would be filled with the Holy Spirit. I prayed that his church would grow. I prayed that he would personally prosper.

An amazing thing happened without any effort on my part. I started to see the good things this man was doing. I saw how he loved the Lord and sought for souls to be saved. He became someone I look up to. And love replaced the hate.

Do I expect people who hate to start loving on their own? No more than I could expect it in my own life. The world needs Jesus if hate is ever going to be conquered. And those who have Jesus need to start doing good things for those they hate. It may be prayer. It may be helping them. It may be giving  them something.  It won't be sitting around hoping for change.

Yes, Christians hate, too. They hide behind righteous indignation, theological correctness and ethical superiority to do so sometimes. Hatred speaks much louder than our self-declared righteousness, theology and ethics. God must get the logs out of our own eyes if we are ever to see the logs in our own eyes.

God is still working on me. I haven't arrived, yet. And each time God removes a log, my eyes feel better.

Monday, September 4, 2017

The Big Payday

We sing "It Is Well with My Soul: but often nothing is going right. We come to church and pretend with the other pretenders that we are right in the middle of God's will. Maybe we think we are the only ones who have the struggles that are ours alone. Meanwhile, God gives us the opportunity to come home. Some need to listen to God's call for salvation. He is giving them an opportunity to repent. Others need to go with God wherever, whenever and however He calls. In either case, there is a big payday. Some will walk into the presence of the Lord one day and hear, "Welcome, my good and faithful servant." Others will hear, "Depart from Me." God gives us the opportunity t repent. Failing to do so "thinks down" on His grace. Regardless of what we do, a big payday awaits.

Monday, August 28, 2017

No Place to Hide

There are two groups of people hiding in the church. One group is comprised of church members and attenders who think they can stand before God on Judgement Day because they have joined the church and been baptized. They know deep in their hearts that they have never made a saving commitment to Christ. The second group excuses themselves from praying and sharing Christ with their friends because these friends are good people. They know their friends, loved ones, co-workers and neighbors don't know Jesus as Savior but they hide behind a false hope that God will let them into heaven because they are good people. This message comes from God's Word. God's Word leaves no place for either of these groups to hide.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

The Enemy Within

Why do we get so upset with others in their pride? Why are we beside ourselves when we see someone cutting in line or not doing what they should? Could it be that we recognize the faults in others because we have the faults ourselves?

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

The Sinners' Circle

The first chapter of Romans doesn't just tell us that we are all sinners. It carefully builds a case for the wrath of God. God is fully justified in His judgement and we are without excuse in our sin. So, today must be the day of salvation. Tomorrow may just be too late.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

The End of the Road

God will let you go down the road you choose. The problem is that you will one day end up at the end of that road and not be where you want to be.

Losing Our Minds

The flesh, that part of us that responds to this world, is totally corrupt. It corrupts our minds so that we can't think right.

Monday, July 3, 2017

The Natural Unnatural

God didn't simply give us a list of rules to follow. Each act of God comes through His holiness. Each command is a statement of holiness. Man's rebellion against God is a rebellion against holiness. Jesus said that He is the way, the truth and the life. There is no way to separate those. The way, the truth and the life is a person. You can't have the truth without the way, You can't have the way without the truth. You will not receive life if you haven't agreed with the way and truth. Many people don't have true life because they have exchanged God's truth for human reasoning. They have chosen peace with the world over peace with God. So, there is a progression against God's truth and His holiness. Sin is progressive. This is natural but not godly. Our fallen condition causes us to continue in our sin.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

A Father's Honor

The third Sunday in June has been designated as Father's Day. This agrees with the biblical command to honor our fathers. However, many people do not know what honor is. This message will give some of the reasons we need to honor our fathers and what fathers need to do in order to be honored.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

The Worst Trade Ever

People will trade a relationship with the God that they do not know for the lies of the world that they know. In other words, those who have not accepted the saving grace of Jesus do not know that their trade for the world is the worst trade ever.

Monday, May 29, 2017

When God Lets Go

There are some people who will never give their lives to Christ. Their hearts lead them away from the relationship that God wants them to have with Him. There comes a point when God lets go.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

I Cam Be My Own Deceiver

Exchanging God's glory for something else can happen to us without our noticing. We may even think we are doing what is right when we do so. We can look at the scripture and claim we aren't doing what the scripture has used as real examples of exchanging God's glory but we may still be doing so. Thus, we claim to be wise rather than convicted. We become fools instead of becoming wise. That's a dead end road.

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Honor Your Mother

This Mother's Day there are three things to make sure that you honor your mothers. You can love her, respect her and remember her. This sermon tells you how to do all three.

Monday, May 8, 2017

The Darkened Heart

The darkened heart can't see clearly. It lacks God's peace, hope, love, guidance, purpose and strength. The darkened heart won't receive salvation and is bored with worship. If Satan can't keep you from being saved, he will certainly do what he can to keep you in the dark. It doesn't have to be that way.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

No Excuse Will Do

God has revealed Himself to everyone since creation and through creation. The evidence is so plain that no one has a valid reason for ignoring God. This sermon gives the reasons why.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

How Can a Loving God Be Full of Wrath?

If I had cancer, I would want a doctor who hated cancer. It would make him or her more than a good doctor. It would make a loving doctor. This sermon shows how a God who isn't full of wrath concerning sin isn't a loving God.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

The Moment of Faith

Faith is adhering to a belief. You will act consistently in what you believe. These beliefs come from the heart. Each person must receive faith and believe. That will happen differently for different people. Some believe by hearing, while others believe by sight. Some won't believe until they touch. What will it take for you to believe?

Turning the Tables

People set up places to exchange Roman money for the Temple money in the Temple. They sold the animals necessary for the sacrifice. It was the most practical thing to do. However, Jesus throws them out of the Temple because worship isn't practical.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

The Righteous Will Live by Faith

How much righteousness do you have? Do you think you have 50% or 75% of what is needed to have an unhindered relationship with God? So, you only need 25% to 50% of His righteousness, right? No, absolutely not! This message states clearly that your righteousness and God's righteousness are totally different. You must abandon your righteousness to have His righteousness. Then, you will live by faith.

Monday, March 27, 2017

The Gospel Power

Many Christians trust in Christ but fail to realize the power in that decision. They set the gospel aside rather than access its power in their lives. It's like riding in coach when you could fly first class.

Sunday, March 26, 2017

The Gospel Offense

Those who regularly share the gospel, whether it be with family, friends or co-workers, will be judged poorly some of the times. The gospel is offensive to many of those who want to believe they are going to heaven without it. This message tells why.

Sunday, March 19, 2017

The Gospel Debt

What if God has great plan for you but you don't do what God wants you to do, do you still get His great plans? We are not our own. We may be able to choose what we want to do but those who know Jesus Christ as Savior owe a great debt that is a joy to be paid. Paying that debt puts us right on track in receiving God's great plans.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

Faithful Failure

Sometimes you can do everything right; you can do all the Lord has asked of you, and you will fail. Is this because God isn't able to help you succeed? Does God quit caring some times? How can you fail when you have done everything right? This message helps answer these questions.

Fellowship

Fellowship is more than fried chicken and potato salad. It is the meeting of spirits between Christians. It has a lot to do with the Christians mutual growth in the faith. This message tells you how you can have it.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Prayers

The most godly person can pray the most godly prayer and God can still say "no." Why is that?

Influence

A good marketing person might tell Jesus that He didn't play His cards very well. After all, look at all the real miracles He could do. Why didn't Jesus tell the disciples to get a crowd together after he fed the 5000. He could tell them to tell the crowd to come back for a really good meal the next day. Then, the disciples could gather some really sick people and maybe a couple of people who had recently died. After the disciples had the crowd chanting and really rocking out, Jesus could walk across the Sea of Galilee for His entrance. Then, saying, "Behold!" with the sound of thunder He could raise the dead, heal a few people and start producing fried chicken and potato salad to feed the whole crowd. Just think of His popularity, future crowds and the offerings He could gather! But He didn't do that. Why?

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Greeting

The difference between a sinner and a saint is the Savior. Paul has some choice things to call believers. We are every thing he has called us.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

What's in a Name?

Of all the names that Jesus is given, the Name above all names has the greatest impact. Jesus emptied Himself to become a human who would suffer, die and resurrect. He was glorified by His Father. This name leads us to understand what who we are and what we need to do. This takes giving it all over to the Lord. Are you ready for that?