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Sermons from New Hope Christian Fellowship

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Acquiring Spiritual Sight

ACQUIRING SPIRITUAL SIGHT INTRODUCTION I’d like to begin out time together in God’s Word by relating a true story to you about a man who has the ability to give man sight. C. P. Hia, a writer for RBC Ministries relates the following story in the May 20th 2009 devotion of Our Daily Bread: Sanduk Ruit is a Nepalese doctor who has used his scalpel, microscope, and simplified cataract surgery technique to give sight to almost 70,000 people over the past 23 years. The poorest patients who visit his nonprofit eye center in Katmandu pay with just their gratitude.[1] BACKGROUND The apostle John wrote his gospel to validate through many witnesses that Jesus is the Messiah sent by God to save those who would believe in His name and abide in Him. In the process, he also points out the attitude and behavior of those who chose not to believe in Christ. One of the specific aspects of Jesus’ ministry was to give sight to those who were physically blind. Additionally, Jesus gave spiritual sight to those who believed in His claim to be the Son of God. John 9 relates a wonderful example of how God draws people to Himself through Christ. The first 34 verses relate the experiences of a man who had been physically healed by Jesus. Though the miracle he experienced was questioned by everyone to the point of the man being verbally persecuted, the man’s resolve did not change in regards to what Jesus had done for him. Because of his testimony for Christ, the man was put out of the synagogue (Vs. 34). This leads us into our text for today. If you have your Bibles with you, turn with me to John 9:35-41. SCRIPTURE: John 9:35-41

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The Testimony of Your Sight

THE TESTIMONY OF YOUR SIGHT INTRODUCTION One of the most enjoyable times in my life was during the time I served in the United States Marines as a Commander of Marine Security Guards. It was wonderful to serve in far-away lands with my family at my side. We saw many beautiful places and met many wonderful people. However, there were some difficult things to see along the way. Specifically, I remember walking a sidewalk in Colombo, Sri Lanka when I came upon a man who was blind and lame. He was begging for money. I thought to myself, “How long has this man been in this condition?” I also thought that he would never see the light of day. I’d like to talk to you today about a man who was born blind. BACKGROUND Our study through the Gospel of John, up to this point, has revealed a couple of clear factors. First of all, John’s focus in his writing is to ensure that his reading audience becomes aware that Jesus is the Messiah sent by God to save His people from their sins. John has been and continues to demonstrate the stubborn and rebellious attitudes of those who refuse to believe in Christ as the Messiah. However, he also continually emphasizes the importance of a person’s simple belief in Christ and abiding in His word in exchange for eternal life. The first part of chapter 9 reveals a miracle performed by Jesus in giving a man something he had never experienced before in his life, the ability to see. Today’s text will reveal the results of an unbelieving world when God changes a person’s life for the better. SCRIPTURE: John 9:13-34

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Trusting In Christ Alone

David Branon, a writer for Our Daily Bread, wrote an interesting thought about the focus of our worship. He writes: “When a publishing company asked me to write an endorsement for a new book, I said I’d be glad to. It appeared to be a helpful effort directed to young people, challenging them to live for God in a changing world. But as I read the book, something troubled me. Although it had lots of Scripture and great spiritual advice, it didn’t explain that the starting point for any relationship with God is salvation through Jesus Christ. The writer seemed to imply that the essence of living spiritually in modern society is based totally on action—good deeds—and not on saving faith in Christ. I didn’t write the endorsement. The culture of the church is changing rapidly. Often left behind in the rush to find exciting new ideas is the essential nature of the gospel.” (Based upon Galatians 1:6-12)[1]

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Who Is Your Father?

WHO IS YOUR FATHER? Introduction: Mart Dehaan, a writer for RBC Ministries relates the following information about fathers: Some of us have a hard time relating to God the Father. We sing to the Son, pray to the Son, and ask ourselves, “What would Jesus do?” But when Jesus talks about His Father, He touches issues that may be affecting us more than we realize. Maybe our problem is that His Father doesn’t answer our prayers as we want Him to. Or we think of Him in terms of the human fathers we have known. Many of us have never even heard our biological father say, “I love you.” Some have inherited a legacy of abandonment, addiction, and even abuse. Even the best of fathers fail us in life and leave us in death. In one way or another, all of us have been affected by what the Bible calls “the sins of the fathers.” The Father of Jesus Scripture doesn’t tell us much about the relationship between Jesus and Joseph, the man who married Jesus’ mother and raised Jesus as his son. Instead, even at the age of 12, Jesus is found relating to His eternal Father. After staying behind in Jerusalem following the Feast of the Passover, Jesus said to Mary and Joseph, “Why did you seek Me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?” (Luke 2:49). Years later when Jesus went public at about the age of 30, He talked a lot about the Father. He told His disciples that He had come to bring them to His Father who was speaking and working through Him (John 14:8-11). When one of them asked Him to show them the Father, He said, “He who has seen Me has seen the Father” (v.9). Then, as He was about to complete the work that He said His Father had given Him to do, Jesus told His friends that He was leaving to prepare a place for them in His Father’s house (John 14:2). He said, “I am going to the Father, for My Father is greater than I” (John 14:28). From all that Jesus says about His Father, it’s clear that He wants us to love and trust His Father as He does. Background thought: Verses 31-36 of chapter 8 reveal the type of belief that Jesus requires for those who claim to be His followers, a faith which required abiding in His word. Today’s text continues the dialogue from last week. Jesus is addressing the assertion of His Jewish audience that they did not need to be set free from bondage. Text: John 8:37-47

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The Key To True Freedom

THE KEY TO TRUE FREEDOM Introduction: Some people think that freedom exists in the absence of authority. Unfortunately, without the presence of authority, there is no way to preserve the freedom we think that we have. Others can take our freedom away from us. Some people think that money is the answer. If they had enough money, they could buy their freedom. We can certainly look at many who have walked into a large some of money through an inheritance or winning a lottery and see that it’s not long before they are more miserable than before they received the money. In both situations, it appears that if one can obtain a lasting freedom in one’s life, they would experience contentment and long term happiness. Is a peaceful freedom available that every person can experience, a freedom that results in joy like nothing else can offer? The Bible tells us that there is. Turn with me in your Bibles to the eighth chapter of the Gospel of John. Background thought: As we continue in our study in John’s gospel, Jesus is continuing to confront those who refuse to accept His offer of life. Jesus is now talking to Jews who allegedly believed in Him. As we begin our walk through today’s text, we will see that Jesus clarifies what it means to be His follower. Let’s look together at verses 31-36. Text: John 8:31-36

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