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This is our Easter Sermon. It focuses on the reality of the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ and addresses why God took this action, what it accomplish, and why it matters what we believe.
It Only Works if You Drink It John 4: 1-42 v.14 â€œWhosoever drinks of the water that I shall give him will never thirst. But the water that I shall give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into everlasting life.â€ When we meet, is it present? How can we tell? Do first time attenders experience it? Can it be programmed into our gatherings? Where can I buy it ? If it doesnâ€™t show â€¦well, why not? WHAT is it anyhow? It is not unusual that we come to God on a regular basis, yet seldom seem to experience the thirst quenching relationship that we want and that should be ours. Either there is a problem with the water or we are not drinking it. Here is a woman that responds immediately and completely to a brief encounter with Jesus? She not only changes, but because of her response her city is changed. What did she do that we donâ€™t? 1. An awareness of and a willingness to address the thirst within. v.15 â€œSir give me this water that I may never thirst, nor come here to draw.â€ 2. A willingness to change priorities when confronted with a solution. v.28 â€œAnd the woman then left her water pot and went her wayâ€¦.â€ 3. A willingness of personal exposure for the sake of something greater. v.29 â€œCome and see a Man that told me all things that I ever did.â€ v.39 â€œAnd many of the Samaritans of that city believed in Him because of the word of the womanâ€¦.â€ A wise person chooses a destiny and accepts the road. A foolish person chooses a road and accepts the destiny.
The IT Factor That Impresses God and Guards Your Rear Scripture: Isaiah 58; Matthew 25 When we meet, is it present? How can we tell? Do first time attenders experience it ? Can it be programmed into our gatherings? Where can I buy it ? If it doesnâ€™t show â€¦well, why not? WHAT is it anyhow? If any of you see a brother or sister in need and you have material possessions to do something about it but turn a cold shoulder and do nothing, what happens to Godâ€™s love? It disappears. And you made it disappear. (1John 3:17) Message Bible George Barnaâ€™s research poll: 1. Only 14 % of Bible-believing Christians believe that poverty is an issue that the church should address. The complexity of ministering to the poor in todayâ€™s culture 1. Who are the poor? 2. Who are the â€œshake downâ€ artists? (John 6:26) 3. Who are the lazy and irresponsible? (2 Th. 3:10-12) 4. Who will use you and disrespect you? (Matthew 7:6) 5. Who are the ones trapped in a cycle of poverty and hopelessness? Four actions that impress God (Isaiah 58:7, 8) 1. Share your food with the hungry 2. Provide shelter for the poor 3. Supply clothing for those who need it 4. Donâ€™t turn away from helping your relatives You do these and the glory of the Lord will be your rear guard! God rewards and indicts the global Church on the basis of its actions to the poor. (Matthew 25:31-46) Reward- â€œCome you blessed of My Father inherit the kingdomâ€ Indictment- â€œDepart from Me, you cursed, into everlasting fire... The sins of omission are the most serious with the outcome of eternal punishment Observations: We will encounter Jesus in the final judgment and one of the determining factors will be our actions toward the poor. Both sides seem unaware of the impact of their behavior Christ identifies with the poor so completely that these deeds of love done to â€œthe least of theseâ€ are the same as if done to Him.
HOW DO WE LOSE it? HOW DO WE GET it BACK? Scripture: 2 Corinthians 3:7-18 When we meet, is it present? How can we tell? Do first time attenders experience it ? Can it be programmed into our gatherings? Where can I buy it ? If it doesnâ€™t show â€¦well, why not? WHAT is it anyhow? Whatâ€™s the â€œslippery slopeâ€ to losing IT? (Vs. 7-11) 1. The tendency to cling to the secure and familiar even when the familiar leads eventually to our undoing. (death) 2. Being drawn to the external code (law) which kills - it makes external demands without giving inward power for obedience. How can we be in danger of losing IT? (Verse 12-15) 1. By substituting performance for anointing. 2. By replacing ministry with programs. 3. By trading resources for passion. 4. By being so busy doing the work of God that we drift from God. 5. By believing we can create IT instead of spiritually birthing IT. 6. By playing safe rather than living by faith. Do you know how to get IT back? (Verse 16-18) 1. You might need to start with the confession, Iâ€™ve lost IT! 2. Youâ€™ve got to be thirsty for the Spirit that brings freedom. 3. Youâ€™ve got to invite Jesus to get in your face. 4. You polish the mirror - He will bring change.
The IT Factor in the Life of Jesus When we meet, is it present? How can we tell? Do first time attenders experience it ? Can it be programmed into our gatherings? Where can I buy it ? If it doesnâ€™t show â€¦well, why not? WHAT is it anyhow? What is IT? I have come that you might have life and have it to the full (John 10:10) The gift of God eternal life (Romans 6:23) The Spirit gives life (John 6:63) What is IT? IT is LIFEâ€”and not just any life. It is abundant life, life to the full, more and better life than you ever dreamed of. It is life that starts now and is unending! How do I get IT? 1. Youâ€™ve got to really want IT Do you want to get well? John 5:6 2. You must pursue IT with absolute single-heartedness The way to lifeâ€”to Godâ€”is vigorous and requires total attention. Matt. 7:14 3. You must be prepared to fight for IT This is war, and there is no neutral ground. If youâ€™re not on my side, youâ€™re the enemy. Matt 12:30 4. You canâ€™t get IT without intimate allies 5. You must be willing to die for IT Crestfallen, he walked away. He was holding on tight to a lot of things, and he couldnâ€™t bear to let go. Matt 19:22 6. You must be willing to display IT Shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life. Phil 2:15-16 (NIV)
What Contributes to IT? Scripture: Numbers 10:1-10 When we meet, is it present? How can we tell? Do first time attenderâ€™s experience it ? Can it be programmed into our gatherings? Where can I buy it ? If it doesnâ€™t show â€¦well, why not? WHAT is it anyhow? Review: From last Sunday"s messag (Exodus 33) "What is IT" The best explanation I can give of what IT is -- are the following unique qualities found in his people: A passion to linger in His awesome presence Faith filled anticipation, reverence, and humility in worship Longing to get to know God's ways better Being desperate to the point of begging to experience more of His Glory The glory cloud is God's deal, hammering out trumpets and then sounding them is our responsibility (Numbers 10:1-10) 1. The blowing of two trumpets calls the whole community together. 2. The sound of one trumpet calls the leaders to meet. 3. A distinct sequence of sounds signals the order of "setting out" on their journey. 4. The clear blast of the trumpet was a call to do battle with the enemy. 5. A different sound was for appointed times of rejoicing. " If people can't see what God is doing, they stumble all over themselves" Proverbs 29:18 (the Message Bible) Without a clear vision, people will never get IT and keep IT. IT doesn't show up on its own. IT follows a God honoring vision that people are willing to give their lives to. What are the five things we do? We focus all our energy on these five things 1. We believe, preach and teach the Bible is our final authority and moral compass. 2. We celebrate in worship which strengthens us. 3. We build meaningful relationships which connect us. 4. We learn to pray which empowers us. 5. We reach out to the unchurched, nominal Christians and seekers inviting them to become Christ followers.
What Is â€œITâ€? Scripture: Exodus 33:7-23 When we meet, is it present? How can we tell? Do first time attenderâ€™s experience it ? Can it be programmed into our gatherings? Where can I buy it ? If it doesnâ€™t show â€¦well, why not? WHAT is it anyhow? As we begin this sermon series, you may wonder why we would name it, â€œITâ€. Truth be told there is an element of curiosity and a deep hunger for â€œITâ€ that we hope is stirred up in each of us. We believe this series will acknowledge the difficulty of explaining â€œITâ€,to get our hands around â€œITâ€; but will challenge us to desire â€œITâ€ and to explore the depth and wonder of all that God has for us as we discover what â€œITâ€ is. Some evidence that â€œITâ€ was in the â€œtent of meetingâ€ with Moses (Verses 7-11) The LORD would speak to Moses face to face, as one speaks to a friend. The "IT" factor - intimate friendship, hearing from God, persoanl guidance. All the people stood at the entrance of their tents worshipping while Moses met with the LORD in the â€œtent of meeting.â€ The "IT" factor - respect, reverence, worship, anticipation Joshua, the young aide of Moses, did not want to leave the â€œtent of meetingâ€ after Moses left. "IT" factor - lingering in the awesome prescense of God Moses is discovering the importance of â€œITâ€ (Verses 12-17) â€œIf you are pleased with me, show me your ways so I may know you and continue to find favor with you.â€ (Verse 13) â€œIf your presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here.â€ (Verse 15) â€œYour presence with us is what will distinguish us from all the other people on the face of the earth.â€ (Verse 16) Moses begs for more of â€œIT.â€ â€œNow show me your glory.â€ (Verse 18) This glory radiating off of Moses was never meant to be an Old Testament experience only. Your take home for the week: â€œArise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the LORD rises upon youâ€¦ and His glory appears over you.â€ (Isaiah 60:1, 2) â€œChrist in you, the hope of gloryâ€.. (Col. 1:27) You radiate Godâ€™s glory and bring an infusion of that glory into your atmosphere!