In faith as in life we need friends who are constant and who will stand by us through thick and thin. Jesus is that friend for us. God help us be and find that constant friend.
This is the final session of our summer series. Here we consider the mark and the legacy that Luther left.
What makes a good friend? A great friend? The disciple John once recorded his best friend's words, “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friend” (John 15:13). Learn how growing in relationship with our most faithful friend, Jesus, changes our relationships with others.
It's time to dismantle the forces that take the joy out of life and lead us to sigh. And that is precisely what Paul does for us in Romans 7. In this final message of the series, Paul dismantles our relationship with the law and set us free to live in joy in our new relationship with Jesus. Romans 7:1-6
The powerful effect of God’s work for us in Christ leaves us justified and saved without a doubt. The resurrecting power of God’s work for us in baptism leaves us completely changed. How can we go back to the way things used to be? Why would we want to? Here is true life gained through baptism. Here is true life lived for God. We won't live as victims anymore. Sin doesn't own us anymore. Jesus does. Romans 6:1-11
It's time for death to stop killing life. It's time for us to put death to death and start living again. Paul shows us that Jesus already did; in him we do too! Romans 5:12-15.
This is the third in a series of studies on the life, history, and theology of Martin Luther and the Reformation that started on October 31, 1517. In this episode we focus especially on the Scripture as the foundation for our certainty of the things we believe in teach.
If you aren't sure if God loves you, you need to read this section of Scripture. If you aren't sure if God is on your side, you need to read this section of Scripture. If God feels more like a fiend than a friend, you need to read this section. If you feel like God isn't good and you're growing bitter, you need to know this section of Scripture. Paul demonstrates to us the truth that God does in fact love us. Romans 5:6-11
These days we hear a lot about the power of faith that can move mountains, that can heal the sick, that can make us abundantly rich and wealthy. But is that really what God means when he talks about the power of faith? Does faith have an inherent power if only we believe strongly enough? Does my lack of healing or riches mean that my faith is weak? In this section, Paul helps us understand us understand the true nature of faith’s power and in so doing takes us outside of our faith to the God who alone is able to do what he promised. Romans 4:18-25
This is the second in a series of studies on the life, history , and theology of Martin Luther and the Reformation that started on October 31, 1517. In episode one we take a look back at the ways God worked in Luther's life so that he grew more sure of what he believed and more confident to take his stand on the truth of God's Word. God and his Word would be his only rule for faith.
There are some things that are obvious and clear to all people. Our sin and sinfulness is clear. It’s clear to the godless. It’s clear to and felt by the consciences of people, even on those who don’t have the law. It should be especially clear to those who have God’s law written and handed down (that’s us!). We can feel it; it’s in our bones as our bodies decay – our bodies know long before our hearts and minds that we’ve failed and fallen short. But there is something that doesn’t come intuitively, not to us, not to anyone. This week as we dig into Romans 3 Paul unveils what we didn’t know naturally to us. He gives us a surprising – shocking, really – revelation about a righteousness from God. And it's all gospel; it's all good news. Romans 3:21-28
“I am so eager to preach the gospel to you.” Those were Paul’s sentiments to the Romans whom he had never met, but whom he longed to visit so that he might preach the gospel to them. But before he even visited them or met them face to face he launched into this beautiful letter to them detailing the gospel about Jesus. He was not ashamed because it is that very gospel – whether preached face to face or through a letter – that would save them. We also are very eager to unpack these powerful, saving words of God given through Paul because it is through these words that we too are saved. Romans 1:15-17.
This is the first in a series of studies on the life, history , and theology of Martin Luther and the Reformation that started on October 31, 1517. In episode one we take a look back at the ways God worked in Luther's life that led to the posting of the 95 Theses.
As we’ve walked through this ONE series, we’ve seen repeatedly that there is only ONE. Through faith we’re part of the ONE body of Christ. We’re part of the ONE church of Jesus. We’re part of the ONE family of God. And we’ve been sent forth on ONE mission, to make the name of God great in all the world. We’ve focused largely on the often hidden and invisible reality that we are truly ONE body, ONE church, with ONE mission. Today, as we wrap up this series we’re going to listen to Paul as he teaches the Corinthians about how to work on the visible and the seen. He’s going to teach us to work for a greater and deeper external unity. We are a unified church. Paul is teaching us work at this unity. He is teaching us to work hard to preserve and keep unity in the body both doctrinally (in our teachings), practically (in the things that we do), and in all of our relationships with each other. There is a very real unity. And in these words of farewell Paul teaches us to work for greater and deeper unity. 2 Corinthians 13:11-14
What's your mission? What's ours? Instinctively we live to make a name for ourselves. But there's a better name that we already have. Knowing and having this name that is above every name is game changing! We're not chasing a name because we already have it. And now we live on purpose and on a mission for that name. This week we look at Genesis 11:1-9.
The Christian church on earth is a greatly splintered thing. The Christian church on earth is a greatly troubled. It’s why many people stay away from the organized church and congregation. The organization is messy and splintered. It's a construction zone. God is working on his people. God is building a church, one church, founded on the cross of Jesus. Tomorrow we find our joy and comfort in God's work in us and on us. There is no architect or builder like him. 1 Peter 2:1-10.
Our bodies are an amazing thing. It is just one body, but it is made up of many unique and vital parts. And when it works properly, it's beautiful. But when it doesn't, it's hard and we work to restore the seamless working together of all its parts. The body of Christ is an amazing thing. It is just one body, but it is made up of many unique and vital parts. And when it works well, it's beautiful. But when it doesn't, it's hard and we work hard to restore unity to the many parts of the body. In this section of Ephesians, Paul urges us to work on this unity (amputation is not an option!) and reminds us of some beautiful truths. We already are one. We already have a unity even if we can't see it or feel it. And each of us has been given gifts so that this unity might be strengthened as the whole body grows up and into Christ.
Listen in to this sermon from our evening, Ascension day cookout. Ephesians 4:1-16.
We sometimes act like lambs to the slaughter, defeated, deflated and discouraged. And that’s the way that the world sees us too. Christians are sheep. They just go without thinking. They just follow blindly. They just believe as if they had no brain. At least that’s the thought process and the accusation. But we’re not at all. Not even close. We are lions roaring with a confidence that doesn’t come from inside us. We are lions roaring with a victory that isn’t ours. We are more than conquerors through him who loved us and gave himself for us. Romans 8:31-39
“E.T is full of timeless longings expressed in children’s literature of all eras.” Timeless longings. Because we all long. We yearn. We search. We hope for home. We are all wrestling with a longing for home. We’re all feeling at least a little bit like refugees, like nomads on some crazy journey. And so at times we’re lonely, other times isolated and feeling away, but generally just longing for home. Paul has hope for the refugee. We are going home and God will make sure of it. Romans 8:18-30
We are up against sin. It is a war of life and death proportions. We have to see it that way or sin will kill us by leading us to minimize it, thinking, "This can't hurt me. It's just an annoying part of life." But it is that big a deal. It will kill us. And with the Spirit's help we will kill it. And not just that. We will eternally conquer it and enjoy the Father's gifts and his pleasure for all eternity. Listen in. Romans 8:12-17