Racism is heresy…

Justification by faith is important. It glorifies God. It humbles us. It unites Christians. One reason Paul wrote the book of Romans was because of tension between Jewish believers and Gentiles. It’s hard to appreciate now, but in Paul’s mind, this would have been the single biggest division there was between people. We think of the division between black and white, between rich and poor. Paul thought of the division between people who were Jews and people who were Gentiles. It was such a big division that even after people became Christians, it was still a problem.  A lot of … Continue reading Racism is heresy…

From the Archives! Luke Sermon Manuscripts: Luke 9:21 and 22

I like reading sermon manuscripts! So, I thought it might be helpful for some if I shared some various manuscripts of messages I have preached from time to time. Now, I am not going to do the work of editing … Continue reading From the Archives! Luke Sermon Manuscripts: Luke 9:21 and 22

The Wrath of God Makes a Difference

1. Dealing with sin: Mt. 18:7-9 2. Dealing with sexual sin: Col. 3:6, Mt. 5:27-30, Eph. 5:3-7, 1 Thess. 4:6, Heb. 13:4, Heb. 12:15-17 3. Courage in face of martyrdom: Mt. 10:26-37 4. Self-denial: Mt. 16:24-27 5. Comfort for persecuted believers: 2 Thess. 1:6 6. Freedom to respond to enemies with love: Rom. 12:10 7. Patience: Prov. 20:22 8. For Poor Believers: James 5 9. Reason to watch out for apostacy and unrepentant sin: Heb. 10:22-31 10. Reason to deal with false teaching: Jude 11. Fear and trembling: Ps. 119:118-120 12. Love for Christ: 1 Thess. 1:10 13. Holiness, etc.: … Continue reading The Wrath of God Makes a Difference

Judgment…

There are so many horrible things happening in the world at this very moment. And very little outrage. I wonder if one of the reasons there is less and less outrage over the grave injustices that we see all around us is because we are losing our sense of God’s outrage over these injustices. I was reading through the Psalms this morning reflecting on how the picture the Psalmist paints of God is very different than the idea we sometimes have of Him. Consider these random outtakes: He blows the wicked away like chaff. He shatters the wicked like earthenware. … Continue reading Judgment…

Who is there to condemn? part 3

The death of Christ is reason number one we don’t have to be discouraged over our sin. The resurrection is reason number two. The apostle Paul continues, he says “…more than that, who was raised…” One reason we despair over our sin is because we doubt the efficacy of Christ’s death on the cross. When you move beyond godly sorrow over sin into ungodly despair or self-pity, when you begin to look at your sin and say to yourself, “I’m just don’t know if Christ could have possibly dealt with this…” it’s as if you are looking at the cross … Continue reading Who is there to condemn? part 3

Who is there to condemn? part 2

There are some who are not concerned about their sin because they think they are good people. Not Paul. He was a man who was the self-proclaimed chief of sinners. And the hope Paul offers those who feel their own unrighteousness is not some sort of positive feel good self-esteem type message. If you take the time to read the beginning of Romans you will find in fact just the opposite. He makes it clear that we are much worse than we actually think we are. “There is none good, no not one.” There are others who are not concerned … Continue reading Who is there to condemn? part 2

Who is there to condemn? part 1

Do you feel righteous? I guess that is kind of a silly question really, in that probably the only people who feel very righteous are the self-righteous and most of us don’t want to be that. The truth is for many of us, as we study God’s Word and we hear good preaching, we look at our own live and it seems sometimes like we are constantly failing. We’ve got the out and out sins in our lives that is for sure, but and I think this might be worse, even when we try to do the right thing, if … Continue reading Who is there to condemn? part 1

Gospel Power

I had a gospel moment the other day. I was talking with someone who had come to fix our electric fence.  I noticed he had a “Shout to the Lord” songsheet and a Bible in his truck.  He began to tell me about how God had converted and changed him.  It was thrilling because he lives in a culture that is pretty dark spiritually.  Like to the point where a doctor in our church was talking to the son of a father who had AIDS, the father was there, and she was telling the son he needed to stay committed … Continue reading Gospel Power

John Owen on Debating Justification

1.  This doctrine is for people who take their sin seriously.  People who are either hiding from God or blaming God are going to have a very hard time understanding or appreciating it.  If a person has not been deeply convicted of their sins, they are not really the kind of people you can learn much about justification from. 2.  The reason we talk about justification is to answer the question, “How does God forgive our sins, receive us into his favor, declare us righteous, acquit us from guilt, remove our curse, turn his wrath away from us, and give … Continue reading John Owen on Debating Justification

Depravity on Display

I was reading an article in Newsweek or Time or some magazine like that the other day where the author was trying awfully hard to show why he doesn’t think humans are all that unique. He went about doing it by talking about rats.  Apparently someone’s being done some experiments with rats where they shock them or something when they make a certain decision and they don’t shock them when they make the other decision and it seems like after a while the rats actually stop and “think” before they choose what to do when they are forced to make … Continue reading Depravity on Display