My 8/20/17AM sermon, Standing Firm in Freedom from Galatians 5:1-6, continues Crestview’s series through the book of Galatians. This series reminds us that there is no other gospel except the truth that we relate to God through Jesus Christ by faith. In this sermon, I unpacked Paul’s call for us to stand firm in freedom (which is abundantly supplied to us through Jesus Christ in the Gospel). We saw what freedom was not and what its destination was. So, I’m hoping you’re encouraged to stand firm in freedom and have a faith that works itself out in love.
This coming Sunday we’ll be digging into Galatians 5:1-6, exploring the freedom we have in Jesus. We will also be wrapping up a year of Tide Travelers in the children’s Sunday School opening time. Each month, we do a lesson related to God’s global vision to help instill His heart in our children. I discussed this on a webinar I did with Sixteen:Fifteen last year. So, plan to join us this coming Sunday.
My 8/13/17AM sermon, Two Sons from Galatians 4:21-31 (livestream archive here), is now online. This sermon dug back into Paul’s argument from Genesis 16-18. God promised that He’d give Abraham sons. Sarah attempted to “fix” this through her servant Hagar. This is like trying to “fix” our salvation by our own works. But, those who are really right with God achieve this because of Christ–and through faith in Him. I hope this sermon encourages you and helps you rest in Christ and expect resistance to these ideas.
It’s been a busy week, with some traveling and planning happening in my life. But, I’m looking forward to Sunday morning at Crestview. Our service begins at 10:15AM. We’ll continue our journey through the book of Galatians. For a few weeks, we’ve been hearing Paul’s heart for his readers. This week, Paul will go back to the Old Testament. He will use the the story of Abraham’s two sons to teach us about being right with God.
If you’re able, go back and read Genesis 15-18. This passage highlights the promises made by God to Abraham. Look for how the story teaches about his two sons. For my sermon, we’ll be in Galatians 4:21-31. I hope it’s an encouraging weekend for you. I hope it causes you to marvel at God’s work to save you. Hope to see you this Sunday.
My 8/6/17AM sermon, An Appeal to Resist, out of Galatians 4:12-20 is now online. This sermon really got at the Apostle Paul’s ministry heart: that Christ would be formed in others. And, some of the application I pressed related to that? Do you long for Christ to be formed in you? Are you working for Christ to be formed in others? I hope this sermon encourages you and helps you make progress in your journey to follow Christ.
Occasionally, I post snippets of Gospel truth on Friday mornings to encourage hearts. Today, drink deep of this reality:
 But when the fullness of time had come, God sent forth his Son, born of woman, born under the law,  to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.  And because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!”  So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God. (ESV)
We have many pieces moving this coming Sunday at Crestview Bible Church.
In Sunday School (starts at 9AM), we’re starting a new book in the First Principles of Family Life: Passing On Your Beliefs. David Lansdowne will be leading this book, which will run through Labor Day weekend.
In Corporate Worship (starts at 10:15AM), I’ll be preaching Galatians 4:12-20. This passage helps show Paul’s heart for his readers, especially that big aim of Christ being formed in them. Pray that God works through His Word.
Finally, we’ll be learning a new song, Not In Me.
Plan to join us.
I’m happy to recommend Jared Wilson’s latest book, The Imperfect Disciple (Paperback, EBook, Audio, Study Guide), to you. Why? I love Jared’s Gospel-centered vision for discipleship. And, that’s not just dropping a phrase. Jared actually believes that the good news of Jesus coming to rescue sinners, dying for them and rising on their behalf, makes a difference in their ongoing growth as ones changed by this good news. Another reason I love this book is that it’s after growth. God’s heart for us is that we make progress in sanctification. Wrapping our minds and hearts with application that direct us to live–really live–are needed. Having given this short recommendation, though, let me allow Jared to speak and whet your appetite for the vision he unfolds:
What I’m trying to say [in this book] is this: you are not your quiet time.
Okay, day to day, you kind of are your Bible reading. The spiritual disciplines–the rhythms of the kingdom–do shape us and help us become more of what Jesus is making us through them. But, in the end, you are not your quiet time.
You are not your cruddy prayer life. Prayer is vital and necessary. When you pray, you strip your soul down to your proper proportion, helpless and needy and desperate. Prayer of all kinds is basically confessed need of God. It is an expression of our un-God-ness and God’s total God-ness. But in the end, you are not your prayers. Jesus is mediating for you and the Spirit is interceding for you, making up for all your prayerlessness.
You are not your standing before people.
You are not your past.
You are not the accumulation of harsh words from others and negative self-talk.
You are not even your sin, as primary and as serious as that problem is.
I’m not trying to affirm your sense of goodness. I’m doing the opposite, in fact.
I want to, by God’s grace, give you the freedom to own up to your not having your act together. I wrote this book for all who are tired of being tired. I wrote this book for all who read the typical discipleship manuals and wonder who they could possibly be written for, the ones that make us feel overly burdened and over tasked and, because of all that, overly shamed.
You are not your ability to pull yourself up by your own bootstraps.
You are not the sum of your spiritual accomplishments and religious devotion.
You are a great sinner, yes. But you have a great Savior.
Child of God, you are a child of God. And he will never, ever, ever leave you or forsake you. (pp.229-230)
We need this good news. I hope you grab this book and find the encouragement it has for you.