I was back in the pulpit preaching at Crestview and got back into our series on 1 Corinthians. My sermon, Seeking Your Neighbor’s Good (1 Corinthians 10:23-11:1), is online. While most Christians think that loving their neighbor is a great idea, many struggle to do this well. And, as Paul gets to the end of a larger section in this book, he draws our hearts up and out to apply this well. I hope the sermon encourages you.
On Tuesday, February 15, I went into surgery to get a total knee replacement, and it was successful. But, of course, I have the scar to prove it. But, seriously, I had dealt with knee pain for many years because I had cartilage removed from my knee when I was a teenager, and after my time in sports in high school and college, the surgeon told me that in my 40s, I would have some knee issues. Well, I’m in my 40s, and the time has come.
I’ve been keeping up on my exercises and rehab procedures. While there are times I’ve probably overdone it, progress is being pursued as I continue to exercise and rehabilitate this knee. The animation above shows what the procedure I got looks like. And I’m posting this today because I plan to return to regular activity this week.
Many of you have prayed for this, and you can continue to pray that my knee would heal well and that rehab would have the desired effect. I want my body to be helpful to show love to my children and neighbors. I feel like in recent years, in particular, I’ve been unable to live the kind of life I’d like to. So, you can pray for a restoration of those goals.
My 2/6/22 sermon at Crestview, For the Sake of the Gospel (1 Corinthians 9:14-23), is online. If I put the sermon in a sentence, it would be that we die to ourselves and serve all because the good news of Jesus has captured us. But, of course, you know the context here is about Paul laying aside his rights to payment or support from the Corinthians so that his preaching and witness are distinct from the orators of the day there. And in this passage, he lays out what drives him to do what he does. So I hope the sermon encourages you.
My 1/30/22 sermon at Crestview, Freedom? (1 Corinthians 9:1-14), is now online. On the heels of 1 Corinthians 8 with all of its instructions that our freedom or rights should be governed by love and that knowledge won’t deliver on what it promises–it puffs up, but love builds up–chapter 9 comes to question everything. As you read 1 Corinthians 9, you’re immediately struck by how many questions are asked. I summarized this with three questions that inform our freedom. And, I hope my sermon encourages you to lay aside your rights for the sake of the Gospel.
My 1/23/22 sermon at Crestview, Love Preferred (1 Corinthians 8:7-13), wrapped up the first half of the book of 1 Corinthians. And this sermon, in particular, gave some more thought to what I taught last week on the failure of knowledge to deliver. Knowledge puffs up, and love builds up. So, when the Corinthians are flexing their freedoms to encourage the eating of meat sacrificed to idols, they are bypassing love and smashing the weaker Christian. The warning for us is that it damages our souls too: we are sinning not only against someone for whom Christ died but are also sinning against Christ Himself. The stakes are high. Love is the most excellent way. I hope this helps you walk in it.
In my sermon at Crestview on 1/16/22, Knowledge Production Line (1 Corinthians 8:1-6) got us back into our study of 1 Corinthians. In my introduction especially, I was digging into this prevalent notion in our world that knowledge is power. But, when we’ve come to know Christ, we see that knowledge coupled with love is where the true power is (see 1 Corinthians 13 for further explanation). At any rate, I hope this sermon encourages you.
Each year at Crestview, we begin with a Week of Prayer and then end with a sermon emphasizing the importance of God’s Word for our lives. This year, I preached the sermon on getting Into God’s Word in 2022. I’ve been reading and studying Deuteronomy a lot, so this proved to be an excellent time to use an essential part of the ending of that book.
Deuteronomy 32 is a song of Moses that came after his closing remarks to the people. Immediately after this song, as Ray Ortlund says…
This song of Moses (Deuteronomy 32:1-47) gave us so much to think about related to God’s greatness, our great sinfulness, God’s justice, and His compassion. I used these realities to apply them toward our intake of God’s Word. And, I hope this word encourages you.
I love a rhythm that our church has (which was initially birthed from the practice of Bethlehem Baptist in Minneapolis, MN), beginning our year with a Week of Prayer. This year, we launched 1/2 with my friend Luke preaching Luke 10:2, inviting us to ask the Lord of the harvest to send laborers into the harvest. The sermon launched (and was entitled) Week of Prayer 2022 and was followed by a Noon Meal in which we prayed and began the year hanging out together.
Luke also developed a Week of Prayer guide to help us have some ways to pray for the unreached who are connected to our church’s international partners.
I’m also super excited about a calendar Luke and his talented wife designed, providing our church ways to pray for our community throughout the year.
So, I don’t know how you intend to begin the year, but might I recommend you spend some time in prayer, allowing God to shape your heart.
Hey everyone! I hope you’re feeling blessed this holiday season. I found some resources that might encourage you this holiday season. So, I thought I’d post them here to keep a record of them.
One contention that preachers make is that the season of Advent is about hope. But, you might not realize just how much hope Jesus being born was to those first listeners. And, Glen Scrivener helps us see that here in this poem called The Night Before Christmas:
The Gaither Vocal Band isn’t my preferred genre of music, but I don’t think there is any denying how incredible David Phelps performance of O Holy Night was in this video. Stick around for the 3:20 mark and then how he brings it home at the end. Pretty incredible:
Finally, for the more theologically minded, I don’t know if you’ve ever read the Nicene Creed. But the Credo Magazine devoted an entire issue to this moment in church history. So if you want to have your mind stretched around what it means that the second person of the Trinity came to earth to save sinners, I’d encourage you to seek to digest these helpful articles.
The Nicene Creed issue by Credo Magazine
My 12/19/21 sermon at Crestview, Advent Joy (Luke 2:8-12), is now online. I tried to dig into what is producing joy in our lives and the reasons why the Gospel is the good news of great joy. I hope this sermon encourages you and helps you prepare your heart for Christmas later this week.