2008

July 14, 2008

INTRODUCTION – DOES anyone know where in the Bible it says, “It’s a Man’s World”?? I’ll give you a clue. It is right next to the passage that says “a woman’s place is in the kitchen!”. ….. In other words, neither phrase is in the Bible. But did you know that the culture and society into which Jesus Christ was born and raised, and eventually started His ministry was founded on that underlying attitude?

Now what would you do, if you knew you had 3 and half years to build a movement that would establish the kingdom of God on the earth, – a kingdom in which men and women are equal in value and importance, and you knew you were to primarily invest in 12 men to lead that movement – – 12 men who were as slimed as anyone by that underlying attitude?? Continue reading Jesus and Divorce – Matthew 5:31,32

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July 6, 2008

INTRODUCTION – Some 2,000 plus years ago a King was born to a very non royal couple. His name was Jesus Christ – and when after 30 years of relative obscurity, He began to establish His kingdom – one of the first things He said about His kingship and His kingdom is that it would be characterized by “setting the captives free.”

Luke in his account of Jesus’s life and ministry says in chapter four vs. 16 that Jesus entered the synagogue and began to read a passage from Isaiah that declared what the Messiah’s purpose would be. It is actually the Messiah speaking when He says through the pen of Isaiah, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, Because He (God the Father) anointed Me to preach the gospel to the poor. He has sent Me to proclaim release to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind. To set free those who are oppressed… to proclaim the favorable year of the Lord.” Continue reading Kingdom Righteousness = Sexual Purity – – Matthew 5:27-30

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June 29, 2008

INTRODUCTION – Does anyone know what the ten commandments are?
1. You shall have no other gods before Me.” Vs. 3
2. You shall not make for yourself an idol…” vs. 4
3. You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain..” vs. 7
4. Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.” Vs. 8
5. Honor your father and your mother…” vs. 9
6. You shall not murder. Vs. 13
7. You shall not commit adultery. Vs. 14
8. You shall not steal.” Vs. 15
9. You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor.” Vs. 16
10. You shall not covet.” Vs. 17 Continue reading “You Shall Not Murder” – Matthew 5:21-26 & Ex. 20:13

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June 22, 2008

INTRODUCTION – As we jump back into our series in the gospel of Matthew, keeping our theme “Truly great in 2008” in view, I want to quickly review where we have been, so we have context for where we are going.
Jesus Christ – knowing that His time on earth is short, and knowing that His disciples must carry on His mission upon His departure, and knowing that the forces of hell will come against them, is seeking to build a culture of kingdom character and purpose that will enable them to not only enter into and experience all the blessings of His kingdom, but also to expand it.. That’s what we see in the first 11 vs. of ch. 5 – typically called the Beattitudes, followed by a few verses on the role His disciples play in the world as salt and light.

Our last discussion in this series revolved around the commandments of God or the whole topic of obedience to the word and will of God. (read Matt. 5:17-19) This is one of many passages in the gospels where Jesus makes very clear how crucial every word of God is for us to be able to know and follow Him.
We determined that those who are great in the kingdom of God are those who have learned to become obedience trainers. They not only seek to obey the Lord themselves, but they also try to help others do the same. Continue reading The Battle for Righteousness Matthew 5:20-26

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May 25, 2008
INTRODUCTION – Four State Supreme Court justices shocked the world last week when they decided in their infinite wisdom that homosexual marriages are just as legally justified as heterosexual ones, and thus should be treated as such in CA.

I have observed and read a variety of responses to this judicial decision. Homosexuals and lesbians wanting to be married to one another and wanting to be recognized by the government as such of course are elated. Various leaders of Christian activist groups are outraged, and are vowing to fight this to the end.

While I will be the first to vote for a marriage amendment to our state constitution that will override this judicial decision, I do not think that that – in and of itself will solve the ever deepening problem we are witnessing in our society. I submit to you this morning that the primary reason marriage is in such trouble in our society is because married believers have either not understood the original intended purpose and importance of marriage, and/or have been cavalier or complacent in pursuing that purpose and priority in their own marriages. And because we have either not understood God’s original intended purpose and plan, or we have not been passionate about pursuing that purpose for our own marriages, we have lacked the conviction, authority and passion necessary to help reproduce it in other’s marriages. Continue reading Marriage Revisited

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Greatness through Keeping & Teaching
Matthew 5:17-20
INTRODUCTION – review of our theme & Matthew series
Ch. 5 Vs. 13-16 tells us two things that was true of the disciples and followers of Jesus then, and is true of many of us today.

1. we followers or disciples of Jesus have an amazing calling and strategic role in the plans and purposes of God on the earth. (e.g. salt and light)

2. we tend to not rise to our calling; we tend to think less of our importance than we should. We tend to minimize our role and contribution. (e.g. tasteless salt; and hidden light)

So the question we ought to be asking after reading this passage: How can I achieve the full potential of my calling to be salt and light in the earth?? How can I achieve the kingdom greatness Jesus has called me to? 2 pronged answer from the following passage. (read Matt. 5:17-20) Continue reading Pursuing Kingdom Greatness – Part V

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April 6, 2008

INTRODUCTION – review of our theme & Matthew series
Ch. 5 Vs. 13-16 tells us two things that was true of the disciples and followers of Jesus then, and is true of many of us today.

1. we followers or disciples of Jesus have an amazing calling and strategic role in the plans and purposes of God on the earth. (e.g. salt and light)

2. we tend to not rise to our calling; we tend to think less of our importance than we should. We tend to minimize our role and contribution. (e.g. tasteless salt; and hidden light)

So the question we ought to be asking after reading this passage: How can I achieve the full potential of my calling to be salt and light in the earth?? How can I achieve the kingdom greatness Jesus has called me to? 2 pronged answer from the following passage. Continue reading Greatness through Keeping & Teaching – Matthew 5:17-20

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March 9, 2008
INTRODUCTION – Our theme and our call to greatness – – the Holy Spirit’s insistence that we doggedly pursue it

There were a lot of great men and women in the old testament era; but perhaps none greater than King David

Acts 13:22 “…He raised up David to be their king, concerning whom He also testified and said, “I have found David the son of Jesse, a man after My heart, who will do all My will.”

“David became greater and greater…” II Sam. 5:10 & I Chron. 11:9

Reasons why David was able to achieve such greatness. Continue reading Learning from David’s Greatness

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March 2nd, 2008 – Clarifying Kingdom Greatness
INTRODUCTION –

I. Getting Clear on Our Definitions/Terms
A. The kingdom greatness that Jesus Christ calls each of His disciples to is basically being just like Him in our attitudes, character, responses, and deeds. It is the quality of life that produces fruitfulness and increase in everything we touch. It knows no limitations or obstacles because it is actually the very life of Christ being expressed through our mortal bodies. Kingdom greatness starts with our own hidden life, and then begins to affect our home life, our work life, our church life, and our witness in the world. Kingdom greatness always results in transformation, not just words. It is bathed in love. And its ultimate result is God being glorified and exalted. The more we see God in all His greatness, the more we will want to live lives that reflect such greatness. Continue reading Pursuing Kingdom Greatness – Part III

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February 17, 2008

INTRODUCTION – Two weeks ago – I finally got my pulpit back ☺ and we began to explore our theme for this year, which I believe God sovereignly gave us – and that theme is “Truly great in 2008”.

Since God began to reveal this theme to us back on the 6th of January in our corporate prayer meeting, I’ve been trying to discern why He gave this particular theme to us at this time? What are His purposes and intentions for us this year, and how does this theme fit in? Why greatness?

Two weeks ago – I think the first big clue we got was – the greatness of God is a consistent theme throughout scripture. “Great is the Lord and greatly to be praised.” The psalmist declared in Psalm 48:1. God is great; He has revealed His greatness to us; He has manifested it in His creation; and He wants to manifest it through His people – the church. When you delve into scripture and see how often God’s greatness is declared or proclaimed, it becomes real obvious that His people ought to be a reflection of that greatness. If we are to be a living epistle, read by all men, as the apostle Paul declared he was, and by implication we are, we dare not wallow in smallness and mediocrity and unbelief. Continue reading Pursuing Kingdom Greatness – Part II

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Truly Great in 2008 –

INTRODUCTION – Reality of world crisis (Kenya, Iraq, ), national crisis (foreclosures, medical insurance, debt, apathy re: politics), state crisis (financial bust, immigration), los osos crisis,
Small church crisis (shortage of volunteers, big bills, few people to pay, small thinking); personal/family crisis;

In the lyrics of one of Leland’s great songs, “This is an emergency.”

J.F.K.’s quote – “Great crises produce great men and great deeds of courage.”

Biblically – “Great crises cause the people of God to get re-focused on our great God, and out of that focus comes great kingdom solutions.” Continue reading Pursuing Kingdom Greatness – Part I

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