Sunday, May 31, 2020

The World is Watching

Pericope: Acts 2: 1-12 - When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues[g] as the Spirit enabled them.
5 Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven. 6 When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard their own language being spoken. 7 Utterly amazed, they asked: “Aren’t all these who are speaking Galileans? 8 Then how is it that each of us hears them in our native language? 9 Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia,[h] 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome 11 (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!” 12 Amazed and perplexed, they asked one another, “What does this mean?”
Sermon Text: Acts 2: 11 (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!”
Sermon Title: The Whole World is Watching

Point 1:  There was an Event over 2,000 years ago– vs. `1 When the day of Pentecost came…

Point 2:  Encounter – vs. 2-3 - 2 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them.
What they experienced was an encounter that theologians still grapple with today.  The most conservative theologians do not deny this event.  It needs no deep and profound explanation.  Let me read the Philips translation to help you.  1-4 Then when the actual day of Pentecost came they were all assembled together. Suddenly there was a sound from heaven like the rushing of a violent wind, and it filled the whole house where they were seated. Before their eyes appeared tongues like flames which separated off and settled above the head of each one of them. They were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in different languages as the Spirit gave them power to proclaim his message.

2 Cor. 12:2-4 - I know a man in Christ who fourteen years ago was caught up to the third heaven. Whether it was in the body or out of the body I do not know—God knows. 3 And I know that this man—whether in the body or apart from the body I do not know, but God knows— 4 was caught up to paradise and heard inexpressible things, things that no one is permitted to tell.
Everyone should strive to have an encounter with God. I’m not talking about your daily devotion.  I am talking about an encounter that is borne out of:
a) Pain
b) Problem
c) Prayer
d) Posture
Point 3: The language and encounter was/is inclusive of Everyone – vs. 5-6 - 5 Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven. 6 When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard their own language being spoken.

Diversity – 1:14; 2: 9-11 - 14 They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers. 9 Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia,[h] 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome 11 (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!” (America is still afraid of diversity and differences.  Many want to kill anything and anybody that has a different opinion, political party or color of skin
2) Language vs. 11 (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!”  – the wonders of God in our own tongues God was comforting them with a new message but it took the Holy Spirit to have the new message of hope.  Church we have the message of hope not the world.
3) New Authority – vs. 18 Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy.– Peter said this day was revolutionary because it was a shift in the status of power.  Servants – women would now be positions of authority.
There will be push back but we have to push forward.  vs. 18 Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy

Life Application/Conclusion

Sunday, May 24, 2020

6 PowerPoints in a Pandemic

Sermon TextActs 2: 4 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues[a] as the Spirit enabled them.
Sermon Title7 PowerPoints in a Pandemic
Point 1: Power of togethernessActs 2: 1 2 …, they were all together in one place…John 15: 12 12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.
Galatians 5:13 6:1-3, 10 NLT - 13 For you have been called to live in freedom, my brothers and sisters. But don’t use your freedom to satisfy your sinful nature. Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love. Dear brothers and sisters, if another believer[a] is overcome by some sin, you who are godly[b] should gently and humbly help that person back onto the right path. And be careful not to fall into the same temptation yourself. 2 Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ. 3 If you think you are too important to help someone, you are only fooling yourself. You are not that important. 10 Therefore, whenever we have the opportunity, we should do good to everyone—especially to those in the family of faith.
Romans 12: 10 Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other.
1Thessalonians 5: 11 So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing.
a)  Check on one another! 
b)  Connect with the life group! 
c)   Respond to the communication from the church 
Point 2: Power of PrayerActs 1: 14 14 They all joined together constantly in prayer, along with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brothers.
the prayer call Wednesday 7:15 to 7:30 – new one number -559-671-2083. 
Point 3: Power of the word. Acts 2: 42 42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching …
1)  Read a book
2)  Read a topic
3)  Read a word
4)  Reflect in prayer
5)  Review – write down what you hear
6)  Regurgitate – meditate day and night
7)  Remember - quote
Point 4:  Power of being out of your comfort zoneActs 10: 34 Then Peter began to speak: “I now realize how true it is that God does not show favoritism.
Point 5: Power of praiseActs 16: 25 25 About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them.

Point 6: Power of declaring. Acts 13: 8-11 8 But Elymas the sorcerer (for that is what his name means) opposed them and tried to turn the proconsul from the faith. 9 Then Saul, who was also called Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked straight at Elymas and said, 10 “You are a child of the devil and an enemy of everything that is right! You are full of all kinds of deceit and trickery. Will you never stop perverting the right ways of the Lord? 11 Now the hand of the Lord is against you. You are going to be blind for a time, not even able to see the light of the sun.”

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Sunday, May 17, 2020

Power in a Powerless Environment

Pericope:  Acts 2:1-4 When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.
Sermon Text:  Acts 2: 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.
Sermon Title:  Power in a Powerless Environment 
Point 1: They were all together.  Vs. 1a When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together…
Point 2: They were all in one place
Point 3: They were all praying Vs. 2 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. 
Prayer can erase a sense of out of control period prayer isn't complicated. It is communication…
1.   Jesus prayed
2.   Jesus taught disciples how to pray
3.   Jesus even prayed on the cross
Life Application
1.   Received the power of God's presence by first accepting Jesus Christ
2.   Connect with a life group

3.   Pray without ceasing 

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Sunday, May 3, 2020

Comfortable in a Crisis


Pericope: John 14: 16-18, 25-27 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 25 “All this I have spoken while still with you. 26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.
Sermon Text: John 14: 16 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—
Holy Spirit Pt 1: Comfortable in a Crisis
Hebrews 13:5b NIV - “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”  
Point 1: Communion only works when you commune with the Counselor. John 14: 16 AMP16 And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another …—Counselor, Strengthener, Standby), to be with you forever
Point 2: Communion only works when you commune with the Helper. John 14: 16 AMP16 And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper (Comforter, Advocate, Intercessor—Counselor, Strengthener, Standby), to be with you forever.
Point 3: Communion only works when you commune with the Advocate and Intercessor.  Romans 8:26-27 26 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. 27 And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.
Romans 8:26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God.
Point 4: Communion only works when you commune with the Strengthener.  Psalm 59:16-17 16 But I will sing of your strength;
I will sing aloud of your steadfast love in the morning. For you have been to me a fortress and a refuge in the day of my distress.
17 O my Strength, I will sing praises to you, for you, O God, are my fortress, the God who shows me steadfast love.
Life Application:
1: Commune with the Holy Spirit
a)  Relinquishing my will for his will
b)  Permitting Holy Spirit to remind me of God’s word then do it
c)  Receiving the truth the Holy Spirit brings to the problem

Sunday, April 26, 2020

Whipping Weary

Pericope2 Cor 11: 25-27 25 Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stonesthree times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea, 26 I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from banditsin danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers. 27 I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been coldand naked.
Sermon Text: 2 Cor 11: 26 26 I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers.
Sermon TitleWhipping Weary
2 Cor 11: 27-29 27 I have labored and toiled and have often gone without sleep; I have known hunger and thirst and have often gone without food; I have been cold and naked. 28 Besides everything else, I face daily the pressure of my concern for all the churches. 29 Who is weak, and I do not feel weak?...
Point 1: Recognize and call weary out.  2 Cor 12: 10 10 That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weakthen I am strong.
Point 2: Trade weary in for God’s grace.   2 Cor 12: 9 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness…” 
Point 3: Acknowledge your own strength2 Cor 12: 11 11…for I am not in the least inferior to the “super-apostles,”… 
Point 4: Receive the Reward after weary is defeated. Gal 6: 9   9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
Life Application:
1: Don’t give up, don’t give in don’t give out
2: Weary isn’t weakness, its humanity in search of your spirit man
3: There is no change without a challenge, no advancement without adversary, no strength without struggle

Sunday, April 19, 2020

The COVID-19 Church: Character in a Crisis


Pericope: Acts 2: 42-47 42 They devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. 43 Everyone was filled with awe at the many wonders and signs performed by the apostles. 44 All the believers were together and had everything in common. 45 They sold property and possessions to give to anyone who had need. 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, 47 praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved

Sermon Text: Acts 2: 46 46 Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts,

The COVID-19 Church: Character in a Crisis

Point 1: Courage. 2 Cor 11: 25-27 25 Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was pelted with stones, three times I was shipwrecked, I spent a night and a day in the open sea , 26 I have been constantly on the move. I have been in danger from rivers, in danger from bandits, in danger from my fellow Jews, in danger from Gentiles; in danger in the city, in danger in the country, in danger at sea; and in danger from false believers.;….

Point 2: Competence.  Acts 22:3 3 … I studied under Gamaliel and was thoroughly trained in the law of our ancestors. I was just as zealous for God as any of you are today.
1.  Still be generous
                                         i.    Luke 21:2-4 (NKJV) 2 and He saw also a certain poor widow putting in two mites. 3 So He said, “Truly I say to you that this poor widow has put in more than all; 4 for all these out of their abundance have put in offerings for God, but she out of her poverty put in all the livelihood that she had.”
                                       ii.    2 Chronicles 31:10- 10 and Azariah the chief priest, from the family of Zadok, answered, “Since the people began to bring their contributions to the temple of the Lord, we have had enough to eat and plenty to spare, because the Lord has blessed his people, and this great amount is left over.”
2.  Stay on course
3.    Seek help with your budget

Point 3: Cost  Paul traveled the world, but it was not free.     
Point 4: Core.  Gal 2: 14 14 When I saw that they were not acting in line with the truth of the gospel, I said to Cephas (Peter) in front of them all, “You are a Jew, yet you live like a Gentile and not like a Jew. How is it, then, that you force Gentiles to follow Jewish customs?
a)  The earth's solar system (core of the sun gravitational pull)
b)  You when you exercise
Life Application:
1.  Connect with the LifeGroup (be intentional stay in covenant for strength)
2.  Trust God - he designed you to lead in this moment
3.  Give your life to Christ in this crisis

Sunday, April 12, 2020

2020 view of the Cross

PericopeJohn 19:1-5 - 1Pilate then took Jesus and scourged Him. 2And the soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on His head, and put a purple robe on Him; 3and they began to come up to Him and say, “Hail, King of the Jews!” and to give Him slaps in the face. 4Pilate came out again and said to them, “Behold, I am bringing Him out to you so that you may know that I find no guilt in Him.” 5Jesus then came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. Pilate said to them, “Behold, the Man!”
Sermon TextJohn 19: 5Jesus then came out, wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe. Pilate said to them, “Behold, the Man!”
Sermon Title2020 View of the Cross – Crossview
Point 1: Their view of the cross.
On that fateful day over 2000 years ago there was a large audience viewing the crucifixion. It happened during Passover and the streets were bustling with Jews who had pilgrimaged to Jerusalem for the feast that celebrated their deliverance out of Egyptian bondage. Every since Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead the place was at a fever pitch about Jesus.  
John 12:9-11 - Meanwhile a large crowd of Jews found out that Jesus was there and came, not only because of him but also to see Lazarus, whom he had raised from the dead. 10 So the chief priests made plans to kill Lazarus as well, 11 for on account of him many of the Jews were going over to Jesus and believing in him.
His popularity didn't stop them from crucifying him and his crucifixion was not only seen by the crowd but by the Jews. 
a)  The religious authorities didn’t like what they saw – (CLIP – SOLDIERS LOOKING AT HIM ON THE CROSS)   John 19:20-21 20 Many of the Jews read this sign, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city, and the sign was written in Aramaic, Latin and Greek. 21 The chief priests of the Jews protested to Pilate, “Do not write ‘The King of the Jews,’ but that this man claimed to be king of the Jews.”
The Jews were so bothered with the sign above Jesus head. This was prophetic. The sign confirm the scripture even though the Jewish authorities hate it Jesus is the king of the Jews .
Not only does this sign confirm it for them it confirms it for us. Jesus is the king of Kings and Lord of Lords. Right now, his Kingdom is under attack by an invisible enemy going from city to city, country to country and community to community like a death Angel. But this morning we shout Jesus is King of Kings let your Kingdom come let your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Can you say that “let your kingdom come on earth as it is in heaven.”
b)  Another view of the crowds was Jesus’ disciple whom he loved John the Beloved– John 19:35-37 The man who saw it has given testimony, and his testimony is true. He knows that he tells the truth, and he testifies so that you also may believe. 36 These things happened so that the scripture would be fulfilled: “Not one of his bones will be broken,” 37 and, as another scripture says, “They will look on the one they have pierced.
     John often spoke in the third person so as not to color the facts with his opinion. When John wrote the book of John he declared himself an eyewitness but only wanted to give you the facts. John knew it was important as a leader to focus people on Jesus, give them the facts so they can grow their faith.
Today it is a fact that Jesus was crucified for our sins and by his stripes we are healed (Isaiah 53:5)
c)  The third view of what they saw is Mary and the woman who followed him. John 19:25-26 Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. 26 When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman, here is your son,”  Can you imagine the anguish she felt?  
Point 2: His view comes in seven vignettes – each with a word or a phrase that has lasting meaning.  
1st Word – SHOW CLIP
Luke 23:34 Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.
It was about 9:00 o'clock in the morning and Jesus was nailed to the cross. Jesus said forgive them for they know not what they do. The cross view is forgiveness. How can you not forgive when you didn't hang on the cross for forgiveness? Forgiveness belongs to God. Jesus bought it on the cross and gave it to us. Now we must use it for when people hurt you the most. If Jesus can forgive hanging from a cross, then so can you hanging on to hurt! 
2nd Word – SHOW CLIP
Today you will be with me in paradise.  Luke 23:43 “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.” (NIV) 
Jesus cross view tells me it’s never too late to get your heart right so you can get into heaven. Once Jesus was teaching and he made that point in the parable about the workers in the vineyard. No matter when the workers started, they got paid the same. Matthew 20:1-16 That tells me I shouldn't worry about when somebody comes into the Kingdom just be thankful that they came. Don't worry about how much a person is blessed but that they are blessed. 
3rd  Word – SHOW CLIP
John 19:26-27 When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Dear woman, here is your son,” and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” (NIV)
Jesus cross view looked at his mother as if to say look at me I've done what I came to do. 
4th Word – Matthew 27:46 (also Mark 15:34) And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” that is, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?” (NKJV)
SHOW CLIP
All of us feel forsaken by God sometimes. 
5TH  Word – SHOW CLIP
John 19:28 Jesus knew that everything was now finished, and to fulfill the Scriptures he said, “I am thirsty.”(NLT)
Jesus shows his humanity. Jesus cross view was this is painful.
6TH Word – John 19:30… he said, “It is finished!” (NLT)
SHOW CLIP
Jesus cross view was he finished what he came to do . “It” is a blank for us to insert whatever we need to be over in our lives.
7th Word – SHOW CLIP
Luke 23:46 Jesus called out with a loud voice, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.” When he had said this, he breathed his last. (NIV)
Point 3: Your View
I believe my view of the cross can best be seen through the eyes of three people who were there. 
a)  Luke 23: 39 One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!”  
You will either accept Jesus or reject him. There is no middle ground. One soldier in the midst of Jesus dying now could believe Jesus was who he said he was now that he was an eyewitness. Today we are an eyewitness to an historical event. What better time to accept him? 
b)  Luke 23:43 “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.” (NIV)
Or our view can be like the criminal. Accept Jesus.  Both were guilty and was getting what they deserved. We too are guilty, and we have a chance to accept him. 
c)  Matthew 27:54 - When the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified, and exclaimed, "Surely he was the Son of God! He surely is the Son of God. And if there was ever a moment we needed the Son of God its right now. Darkness has covered the earth much like it covered the earth when Jesus died, but just like then he got up. And Jesus resurrection makes s people who are not without hope. Jesus resurrection changes everything. And if your view of the cross that he was crucified for your sins and mine then no virus, no shortage of food and no social distancing can discourage you.
Life Application
1. Our view of the cross gives us life – 1 Pet 2:24 - 24 “He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.”
2. Our view of the cross gives us something to live for – 1 Pet 2:21 - 21 To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.

3. Our view of the cross gives us power to live.  Phil 3:10-11 - 10 I want to know Christ—yes, to know the power of his resurrection and participation in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, 11 and so, somehow, attaining to the resurrection from the dead.

The World is Watching

Pericope:   Acts 2: 1-12 - When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a vi...