Renovate

We all tend to think that if we could renovate our house, or our job, or our marriage, or our …, then we’d be happy, but the truth is that life is not lived from the outside – in, but from the inside – out. We live from our hearts. So what does it mean to let God renovate, to transform our hearts? It means to have the heart of Christ, the character of Christ formed in you.

Renovating Our Feelings

January 29, 2023 | Galatians 5:16-25 | feelings

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Our feelings can be both a blessing and a curse. We might even put them into two categories of feeling: pleasurable or painful; and two categories of effect: helpful or harmful. That’s why we’ve entitled today’s sermon: Renovating Our Feelings.” In becoming like Christ, our hearts, our minds and our feelings too, must be renovated. Because feelings are a major influence on how we make decisions. Feelings affect the heart as the seat of the will.

In the apostle Paul’s letter to the Galatians, he taught them how to yield their desires and feelings to the Spirit of God for renovation, so that they would no longer be controlled by their old nature. We can yield our feelings to God’s Spirit for renovation.

Renovating Our Thinking

January 15, 2023 | Ephesians 4:17-24 | discipleship

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What kind of ideas and images inhabit your mind, your thinking? Where did they come from? Do you have a mindset, a worldview, shaped by the Word of God as applied by the grace and Spirit of God? Or is your thinking shaped by the culture you’ve grown up in? The truth is, as believers, we all struggle with being “double-minded,” having competing ideas and images in our thinking. Some from God and some from the world.

God wants to renovate our thinking so that we have the mind of Christ. In the apostle Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, he taught believers to yield their minds, their thinking, to Christ for renewal, for transformation, for renovation. We can yield our minds, our thinking, to Christ for renovation.

The Heart of the Matter

January 8, 2023 | Colossians 3:1-17 | discipleship

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We all tend to think that if we could renovate our house, or our job, or our marriage, or our …, then we’d be happy, but the truth is that life is not lived from the outside – in, but from the inside – out. We live from our hearts. So what does it mean to let God renovate, to transform our hearts? It means to have the heart of Christ, the character of Christ formed in you.

Are you growing in Christ, becoming more like Him in character and behavior? Do you want to? Do have a desire to grow in Christ, having His life and character fully formed in you?
In the apostle Paul’s letter to the Colossians, he instructed believers that since they had been raised to new life in Christ Jesus, God wanted to renovate their hearts, so that the character of Christ was formed in them. Having received Christ as Lord and Savior, we can actively yield our hearts to God, so that Christ is formed in us.


Rediscover Christmas

Rediscover the Story

December 24, 2022 | Luke 2:1-14 | christmas

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Everyone loves a story. And the best stories are worth telling over and over again.

What story are you telling yourself this Christmas. Is it a story about your past? Past mistakes you’ve made? Past hurts you’ve experienced? Or maybe it’s today’s story? So many of us get discouraged and even depressed at this time of year. Maybe there’ll be an empty seat at the Christmas dinner table this year? You’ve lost a loved one and Christmas won’t be the same? Or maybe it’s because we’re telling ourselves the wrong story. What if there’s a better story? In Luke’s gospel, an angel of the Lord invited the shepherds to come and be part of Christ’s story. The Lord still invites us to be part of Christ’s story.

Rediscover the Worship

December 18, 2022 | Matthew 2:1-12 | christmas

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What is worship? It’s whatever you value or love the most. It’s what you spend your time, talent and treasure for as your greatest source of significance and security. That’s worship. It’s whatever or whoever you ascribe the greatest worth to. Ironically Christmas might be the most difficult time of the year to truly worship God because we are tempted to put more of our affections on material things and spending money.

Don’t you feel the tension? Don’t you feel the pressure to spend more money than you have in order to give your kids everything on their list? You want everyone to be happy and you want to be happy, so you spend, spend, spend… And the more you spend, the less it feels like Christmas. Or what it’s supposed to mean. In the gospel of Matthew, the story of the birth of Jesus is told within the political backdrop of the times. From the beginning there was a battle between worshiping the true King and the false king Herod that had usurped His Throne. The challenge for us is to remove our worship from the false king and to put our worship on the true King, Jesus Christ.

Rediscover the Mystery

December 11, 2022 | John 1:1-18 | christmas

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Do you have sense of mystery this Christmas season? Or have you lost the sense of mystery you had as a child? Wouldn’t you like to rediscover the sense of mystery this Christmas?

Some of life’s greatest mysteries have to do with origins. Like the origin of the universe, or the origin of life, or of intelligence. But why would we consider such mysteries at Christmas? The gospel according to John opens up with one of the most amazing and mysterious prologues in the Bible. For in John’s gospel, he revealed the mystery that Jesus Christ was the Son of God come in the flesh. We can rediscover the mystery of Christmas by considering what John revealed about Jesus.

Rediscover the Anticipation

December 4, 2022 | Isaiah 9:1-7 | christmas

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Do you feel a sense of anticipation as Christmas approaches? For many, Christmas has become just another secular holiday, albeit the biggest of all holidays. But rather than having a sense of happy anticipation, some have a sense of dread or complacency. But remember when we were children? Christmas was so mysterious and wonderful then. Wouldn’t you love to rediscover the anticipation of Christmas?

What’s your perspective on Christmas this year? Has inflation limited your Christmas giving? Maybe you lost your job and don’t know how to have Christmas for your family this year? Perhaps you recently lost a loved one and there’ll be an empty seat at your Christmas dinner this year? Or your family has gone through a divorce and Christmas has gotten too complicated? Or maybe all the focus on shopping and spending has sapped your joy? I have good news. There’s a better way. Let’s rediscover Christmas together this year!

In Isaiah 9, the prophet proclaimed a word from the Lord concerning the coming of the long anticipated Messiah. We can rediscover the anticipation of Christmas by looking back in faith at Christ’s partial fulfillment of that prophecy by His first coming and looking forward in hope for His soon return.


Righteousness Revealed: An Exposition of Romans

As we go verse by verse through the book of Romans, we learn how God wants to make us right with Himself and each other.

Gospel Guidance, Greetings, and Glory

November 20, 2022 | Romans 16:17-27 | exposition

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The gospel reveals God’s love and righteousness to us and Paul closes the letter the way he began, with the gospel.

In Romans 16:17-27, the apostle Paul closed his letter to the believers in Rome with a final word of gospel guidance, greetings, and God’s glory. Even in closing his letter, Paul was showing them how to apply the gospel to their relationships. We can apply the gospel to our relationships.

Greetings and Commendations

November 13, 2022 | Romans 16:1-16 | exposition

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Many who preach through the book of Romans skip over these verses as a mere list of mostly unknown names that the apostle Paul commends and greets in closing. It’s neither propositional nor prescriptive, so they decide it’s not preach-able. Yet, we can learn much from the personal and affectionate way that Paul begins to close this letter. Paul really knew how to greet fellow believers and commend them for their faith and service!

Do you know how to greet people? Some of us never learn. We just talk about ourselves, our own problems and ailments. We forget to focus our greetings on the other person. Some of you are here today, and you really need to make some friends. You’ve forgotten what it’s like to really be greeted and welcomed, to be commended and edified.

If that’s you today, I pray that you experience the greeting of God’s people and of the Lord Jesus Himself before you leave today! In Romans 16:1-16, the apostle Paul began to close his letter with personal and affectionate greetings and commendations for the believers there. We can learn how to greet one another in the Lord from Paul’s example.

The Gospel Church

November 6, 2022 | Romans 15:14-33 | exposition

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There’s not a lot of good news today. We have to remember that the news business is just that… a business. And bad news sells. Violence sells. Sex sells. If it bleeds, it leads. But aren’t you sick and tired of all the bad news? As followers of Jesus, we’re the ambassadors of the good news. But what does it look like to see ourselves as the people who proclaim the good news, the gospel of Jesus?

In Romans 15:14-33, the apostle Paul described how God had called him to the gospel ministry and invited the believers in Rome to join together with him in the gospel ministry. We are called to join together in the ministry of the gospel.