Co:Mission (part 1) Sermon Audio

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On Sunday morning, November 6, 2016 at Wildwood Community Church, I preached a message based on Romans 15:14-21. This message was part one in the “Co:Mission” sermon series.  Below you will find the audio from this sermon to listen to or share.

 

To listen offline, click on the link to download the file:

Co:Mission part 1

 

To listen online, use the media player below:

Co:Mission (part 1) Sermon Questions

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On Sunday, November 6, 2016 at Wildwood Community Church, I preached a message on Romans 15:14-21.  This message was part 1 in the Co:Mission sermon series.  Below are a set of questions related to the message for personal reflection or group discussion.

Sermon Questions:

  1. Pray
  2. Read Romans 15:14-21
  3. Does your understanding of theology lead to evangelism?  Why or why not?
  4. What are some of the gracious gifts God has given you related to evangelism?  In other words, what relationships or opportunities has God given to you for the purpose of evangelism?  What would it look like for you to be bold with those relationships/opportunities?
  5. Paul comments that God had used him to spread the Gospel from Jerusalem to Illyricum.  In 15:19, Paul “mapped his ministry.”  Take a moment to “map your ministry” as well.  Who is one person in your home, one person in your work/school setting, and one person in your extracurricular activities that God has placed on your heart to share Christ with.  Commit to pray for those people and think through what it would look like for you to boldly share Christ with them in the days ahead.
  6. Any particular applications stand out to you from this passage?

To access these questions in pdf format, click here.

 

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Co:Mission (Series Preview)

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Have you ever been frustrated?  OF COURSE YOU HAVE!  Asking a question that basic is almost the same as asking “Do you breathe oxygen?”  If you are alive on this planet, you understand what it means to be frustrated.  But what is the root of frustration?  To say it another way, what is the common thread that leads to our feeling frustrated?

The dictionary definition tells us frustration is “the feeling of being upset or annoyed, especially because of inability to achieve something.”  In other words, when we want to accomplish “x” really badly, and we are prevented from doing so, we get frustrated.  When our hard work does not lead to a raise or a promotion, we get frustrated.  When we cannot seem to get that last screw driven in on a woodworking project, we get frustrated.  When our child won’t turn off the TV when we ask them to, we get frustrated.  When we cannot complete a homework assignment because we left our paper at school, we get frustrated.  We can all relate to the feeling of frustration.

Today, however, I want discuss frustration from a different perspective.  I want us to think of NOT what frustrates us, but what frustrates the God who created us.  Not what makes us upset, but what upsets Jesus who died for us.  Not what we want to accomplish, but what Jesus wants to accomplish through us.

God has created mankind with an innate desire to know Him . . . as Ecclesiastes 3:11 says, God has placed “eternity in man’s heart.”  This desire is ultimately met in Jesus Christ who is the “image of the invisible God (Colossians 1:15),” and “anyone who has seen Me (Jesus) has seen the Father (God) (John 14:9).”  As followers of Jesus Christ, we have come to know God in a personal way.  We get to rejoice with Him (Luke 15:17-24), and also to endure with Him in suffering (Philippians 3:10-11).  We even have the hope of being with Him forever in heaven (John 14:1-3). 

As we live out our life, we get to have a relationship with the Living God.  Indeed, “this is eternal life: that they would know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You sent (John 17:3).”  In many ways, we get to know God through a study of the Scripture.  2 Timothy 3:16-17 indicates that through the Scripture we get to know God and His plans for our lives.  The study of Scripture, then, is a theological task.  (The word theology means the study of God.)  We get to know God through a study of the Bible.

But WHY did God give us knowledge of Himself?  He certainly gave us knowledge of Himself for our own benefit (to lead us to salvation, to encourage us with His light as we live in a dark world, to guide us in righteousness, and to inspire our worship of Him), but He also has given us knowledge of Himself SO THAT we would proclaim the Gospel to the ends of the earth.  That’s right.  God has shared with us deep theology (in part) so that we would be His evangelists on this earth. 

A theology that does not have evangelism as a central application is a theology that frustrates God.  It upsets Him when any of the purposes of His revelation are short circuited before they are accomplished.  Of course God WILL accomplish the spread of the Gospel to the ends of the earth with or without us (He has guaranteed it with His promise) . . . but it is His intention that each of us be involved.  When we fail to engage in evangelism, our theology is frustrated at some level.

God wants to accomplish the global expansion of the Gospel (see Psalm 67 or Isaiah 66:18-21 for Old Testament anchors to this idea and Jesus’ Great Commission in Matthew 28:18-20 or Acts 1:8 as New Testament directives).  Knowledge of God compels us (as His people) to share His Gospel with others . . . to join Him on this mission as He works through us.

I was thinking about this idea today as we prepare for the final 4 messages in our study of the book of Romans.  Each Sunday during the month of November at Wildwood Community Church, we will unpack one of the remaining sections of Romans 15:14 – 16:27.  These verses mark the epilogue to one of the greatest (if not the greatest) theological treatises ever written – Paul’s Epistle to the Romans.  Paul concludes this great theology by reminding us of the mission God had given him . . . and by God’s grace the mission we are to share together.  In a sense, this is a co – mission that Jesus shared with Paul and the Romans and us.  For Paul to have his theology achieve its intended objective, it needed to end in proclaiming Christ among those who have never heard . . . and he has invited us to join him in that mission.

God has given us a knowledge of Himself to inspire us to share it with others.  Will you join this co:mission?  Let’s gather together and look at God’s Word as we wrap up our 15 month long study of this great book in November at Wildwood.  See you this Sunday as we kick off in our 8:30, 9:45, or 11:00 service.

Walk in Love (part 4) Sermon Questions

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On Sunday, October 16, 2016 at Wildwood Community Church, I preached a sermon based on Romans 14:13-23.  This message was part 4 in the “Walk in Love” sermon series.  Below are a set of questions (related to the message) for personal reflection or group discussion.

 

Sermon Questions:

  1. Pray
  2. Read Romans 14:13-23
  3. Think of the kinds of friction you sometimes have with other Christians over issues that the Bible is not clear about.  What ares some of these issues, and how have you dealt with these disagreements in the past?
  4. How have other people’s actions ever led you to sin?  How have your actions ever led others to sin?
  5. What would it look like for you to make decisions regarding areas of Christian liberty that would (as their primary ethic) be to love others?
  6. Any particular applications stand out to you from this passage?

 

To access these questions in pdf format, click here.

Walk in Love (part 4) Preview

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How long would it take you to walk to the nearest grocery store?  5 minutes, 10 minutes, 20 minutes?  We all have a walking pace that feels natural to us, and we would settle into that pace on a walk to the store.  Because the speed with which we move is so common to us, we have the ability to average how long it would take us to make a simple journey.

Now, let me ask you another question . . . how long would it take you to walk to the store WITH someone?  While you might be able to approximate the pace of your own walk, you would need to ask a few more questions before guessing the time it would take to make the same journey with another person.  After all, you may be walking with Wang Zhen (Olympic Gold medalist in the 20KM walk).  You might get there faster than advertised if he was your travel mate!  Or you may be walking with your friend’s two year old – a companion that no doubt would make the trip longer than expected. 

When you travel with someone the goal is not to just GET THERE, but to get there TOGETHER.  This impacts the pace of your journey.

I share this today because we have been moving through Romans 13-15 recently at Wildwood Community Church in a series called “Walk in Love.”  This Sunday, October 16, we will be in the fourth part of this series.  In this section, the Christian life is described as a walk.  But what is so fascinating is that the walk of the Christian life is not a personal stroll, but a journey we make together.  This is the clear implication of the section of Romans we are looking at this week (Romans 14:13-23).  In this section, we are called to “slow down” in order to walk in love with those other Christians God has brought into our lives.  The purpose of this is so that we can get “there” TOGETHER, as we minister to each other in love.

What does this mean?  What does it look like?  How does it apply to our lives?  Join us Sunday in our 8:30, 9:45, or 11:00 worship service as we will explore this together.  We will also be having communion together in our services.  Make plans to join us and bring someone with you!

Walk in Love (part 1) Sermon Audio

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On Sunday, September 25, 2016 at Wildwood Community Church, I preached a sermon based on Romans 13:8-10.  This message was part 1 in the “Walk in Love” sermon series.  Below you will find the sermon audio from this message to listen to or share.

 

To listen offline, click this link to download the audio:

Walk in Love (part 1)
To listen online, use the media player below:

 

 

Walk in Love (part 1) Sermon Questions

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On Sunday, September 25, 2016, I preached a sermon based on Romans 13:8-10 at Wildwood Community Church.  This message was part 1 in the “Walk in Love” series.  For questions for group discussion or personal reflection related to this message, see below:

Sermon Questions:

  1. Pray
  2. Read Romans 13:8-10
  3. What one word would you use to describe the lives of Christians?  What are some of the words you would anticipate others using?  How do you want Christians to be known?
  4. We are not to view people as something we can GET something from, but as someone we can SERVE (and love).  How do you struggle with applying this truth?
  5. Ultimately, love is not just an emotion, but it is an action.  If we love someone, we seek their best, not hurt them.  Think of some of the foundational relationships in your life.  What are some ways you can love those people better?
  6. How has God taught you and empowered you to live the life of love He has called you to?  What would it look like for you to trust Christ to love others through you with HIS love this week?
  7. Any particular applications stand out to you from this passage?

To access these questions in pdf format, click here.

Walk in Love (Part 1) Preview

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If you were to describe the lives of Christians in one word, what would it be? 

Some answers that may pop into your mind:

  • Religious
  • Devout
  • Hypocrite
  • Old-fashioned
  • Moral
  • Self-righteous

One of those words above may describe your view of Christians . . . but what is the target?  How does Jesus INTEND for His followers to be identified?  What is the one word that SHOULD describe a truly Christian life?

Romans 13:8-15:13 give us a one word description of followers of Christ:  “Love.” 

We are called to love those around us . . . to not tear down what Jesus is building up.  Over the next 6 weeks at Wildwood Community Church, we will be looking at this idea in a new sermon series called, “Walk in Love.”  This Sunday, I will be kicking off the series by looking at Romans 13:8-10.  Make plans to join us in our 8:30, 9:45, or 11:00 worship service.  Hope to see you there!

Nations Under God (part 2) Sermon Audio/Video

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On Sunday, September 18, 2016 at Wildwood Community Church, I preached part 2 in the “Nations Under God” series.  Below you will find the sermon audio/video to listen to/watch or share.

 

 

To download and listen offline, click on the link below:

Nations Under God (part 2)

 

 

To listen online, use the media player below:

 

To watch the sermon video, use the Vimeo video below:

Nations Under God (Part 2) Sermon Questions

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On Sunday, September 18, 2016 at Wildwood Community Church, I preached part 2 of the “Nations Under God” series.  Below you will find a set of questions related to the message for personal reflection or group discussion.

 

Sermon Questions:

  1. In the message today, we talked about how God has provided a few restraints in the world concerning sin: the conscience, the family, the church, and the government.  In what way do you see these forces restraining sin in our world today?
  2. In response to the “gift of government” and in recognition of its authority (given by God), Christians are called to be model citizens, honor government officials, and pray for government officials.  What are some practical ways you can apply these commands in your life today?
  3. What are some examples (you can imagine) where the government might require Christians to not do something He has commanded us to do, or require us to do something He forbids?
  4. How does it encourage you that Jesus is building His Kingdom, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it?
  5. Are you making God your “fortress”?
  6. How can you apply this message this week?

To access these questions in pdf format, click here.