Sermon Archives

Sermon Archives

Rich in Grace (Ephesians 1:7-8)

In Him As Paul continues to tell the Ephesians about how blessed they are he keeps using the phrase “in Him” or some variation of it. He is trying to hammer into our heads that we are not blessed in who we are or what we have done; we are only blessed in Christ. All of our blessings flow from Him. Every blessing is only found in Jesus. Redemption The next blessing we have in Christ is redemption. Redemption simply…

Adoption (Ephesians 1:5-6)

In love Paul uses the phrase “in love” to connect how God has chosen us before the foundation of the world with God predestining us to adoption. God has done all of this because of His great love for His people. He predestined us to adoption The word predestined literally means to determine beforehand. Before the foundation of the world and before we had ever done any good or evil God determined that He would adopt us. In the process…

Chosen by God (Ephesians 1:4)

Paul has just told Christians that they are blessed with spiritual blessing in heavenly places in Christ. What are these blessings? Chosen Paul immediately begins by talking about predestination. So often predestination is a source of controversy or confusion. However, Paul sees predestination as a source of comfort. We are so inclined to view salvation as us choosing God, but here Scripture tells us that our salvation was brought about because God chose us. People who are proud and successful…

Truly Blessed (Ephesians 1:1-3)

As we learned in the background of Ephesians, the church at Ephesus was facing financial loss and persecution. The more faithful they were to the Gospel the more their economy dried up. The more faithful they were to Christ the more their neighbors hated and persecuted them. The more they followed Jesus the harder things got. The closer they walked with the Lord the more their blessings disappeared. Wrong theology This brings us to a major paradox of the Christian…

Introduction to Ephesians (Ephesians 1:1)

As we begin to study Ephesians we must make sure that we interpret it correctly. The golden rule of interpretation is “What did the original hearers hear?” In order to know this we must know something of the author, his audience, and the circumstances surrounding his writing. Paul is the human author When God inspired the Bible the men He used were not robots. The Holy Spirit used these men’s experiences, personalities, and vocabularies to communicate His truth. Understanding who…

Fruits of True Repentance (Matthew 3:7-8)

As we end our study on abuse, we now want to address how to help an abuser repent and be restored. Because such sins require very personalized counseling our focus is going to be how our church as a whole should approach the process. Pure but not Deceived As believers we have changed hearts and renewed minds; because of this our minds do not naturally fathom or understand the impulses, urges, and deception that engulf the minds of abusers. This…

Forgiveness (Matthew 18:21-35)

Abuse affects a lot more people than just the one who is abused. Family, friends, churches, etc. are all affected by a single instance of abuse. How can we bring healing to these situations and stop the pain from continuing? Forgiveness. Forgiveness defined Forgiveness has been used to cover up and continue the perpetration of abuse. This happens because forgiveness has been wrongly defined. Forgiveness is not a refusal to call the police. Forgiveness is not reconciliation and restoration. Forgiveness…

How to Handle Abuse (Jeremiah 23:1-6)

Main thoughts: Does the Bible give any examples of how to handle abuse? In Jeremiah 23 and Ezekiel 34 we have two examples to follow. In both cases the prophets are confronting other prophets who have used their positions to take advantage of the weak people of God. Part of this abuse is sexual. In these passages God gives us clear direction for how to proceed. Confront the abuser The first thing Jeremiah and Ezekiel do is confront the abusers.…

Mandated by God to Report (Ecclesiastes 8:11)

Religious organizations are constantly being caught covering up abuse. Most of these organizations follow the same line of reasoning. Jesus taught us to forgive not seek vengeance. Christians shouldn’t take each other to court. The church should handle this privately and not get the pagans (police, government, etc.) involved. Christians should handle abuse privately behind closed doors. Is this a correct understanding of Scripture? Right use of the law First and foremost, God’s Law is used to bring conviction of…

Authority is Limited by God (Matthew 20:25-28)

Abuse is always someone in a position of authority, trust, or power ABUSING that position. This position may not come with an official title, but it may be a position that someone holds because of age or physical size and strength. The Bible talks a lot about authority. Many sermons have been preached about authority, and we all have memorized passages of Scripture that command us to submit to authority. The question then becomes, does the Bible place any limits…

Why Study Abuse? (Matthew 18:6-10)

Abuse is one of the most painful things that a human being can endure. Most people do not want to talk about their painful experiences, much less spend time studying it. Why should we study abuse? Abuse defined There is much evil in our world. There is sexual sin and physical violence. Abuse is something quite different. Abuse is when a person in power, trust, and authority ABUSES their position and causes physical, sexual, emotional, or spiritual harm upon a…

Is Church Membership Biblical? (1 Corinthians 12:12-14)

Before we can look at a Church Covenant, we must first ask ourselves the question, “Is Church Membership Biblical?” Definite number of sheep in the flock Peter admonishes elders to watch over the flock (people of the church.) Jesus teaches us that a shepherd knows how many sheep he has and keeps track of each one. In the early church, there was a clear keeping track of how many sheep there were. The book of Acts refers repeatedly to the…