Weekly Sermon

…Listen to Him!


If you want to know what happened, ask an eye-witness.

Three of Jesus’ disciples were eye-witnesses of a spectacular event when they saw Him ‘transfigured’ up on a mountain. They saw a glimpse of the Lord in all His majesty – radiant and shining like the sun. They also heard the voice of God saying: This is my Son, whom I love…listen to Him!

The gospel message of Jesus Christ is not a man-made story. The Bible is not just a book. The disciples have given us their eye-witness account of life with Jesus, as guided by the Holy Spirit. We are children of the living, true God who brought salvation to us through His Son, Jesus Christ.

 

Let us give thanks…

There is a catchy tune called “Don’t worry, be happy” which has been recorded by quite a few musicians.

It sounds all well and good, but how realistic is it to expect us to simply not worry and be happy? Things go wrong, we have health issues, people lose their jobs, and all sorts of other things can trouble us and make us unhappy.

When Jesus said “don’t worry” He was far more realistic. He said we could trust our heavenly Father to watch over us at all times. You and I are important to Him, so He will not turn away and leave us.

True happiness is found in the Lord through His love and blessing.

Salt and Light

salt and light

Salt & Light

A few years ago Kermit the Frog sang it easy being green.

It also isn’t easy being salt and light in the world as Jesus calls us to be, but that should not stop us trying. People stumbling around in darkness need the light of Jesus shining through us.

Salt preserves and gives flavour, and we too are to be the flavour of Christ in our world.

Sometimes we do this well and other times we don’t. Each and every follower of Christ, at some point, needs encouragement and forgiveness because we are less than perfect. We need to be givers of God’s grace as well as receivers. The ministry of growth groups in our congregation is just one way we have an excellent opportunity to do this.

Go and tell….

When John the Baptist pointed Jesus out to two of his disciples, they turned and followed Him. The two disciples spent the day with Jesus, no doubt talking and listening, and at the end of it Andrew went and found his brother to tell him: we have found the Messiah! Actually, it was the Messiah who found them.

As we meet with Jesus we are called to encourage one another and to go and tell. Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. He takes away the very thing that separates us from God so that we can live with Him fro ever. Isn’t that worth talking about!

Scripture Readings:

                Isaiah 49:1-7    The servant of the Lord   

                1 Corinthians 1:1-9    The Lord God is faithful

                John 1:29-42    Jesus: the lamb of God

 

Use It Or Lose It

Successful athletes spend hours and hours in training to be at their best when competing. An athlete who doesn’t train won’t be very successful.

The same applies to God’s people.

Several times St Paul used the analogy of an athlete in training to encourage his readers in their Christian living.

To live a life worthy of the Lord, St Paul says we should bear fruit in doing good, grow in our knowledge of God, and be strengthened by His power, which in turn will give us greater endurance and patience for life.

Faith is meant to be put into practice or it becomes like an idle muscle, sagging from a lack of use.

For he has rescued us from the territory of darkness and brought us into the light the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.

Colossians 1:11-14

Are You Free?

Sometimes it can be hard trying to measure up to other people’s expectations. What about measuring up to God’s expectations? Several hundred years ago, during the 16th Century, a monk by the name of Martin Luther found this weight of expectation too much to carry. Try as he might, he felt that he could not measure up to God’s lofty standards. This left him feeling very much afraid of God.

Then one day God revealed an amazing truth to Luther. All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by His grace, through faith in Christ Jesus (Romans 3:23). This wonderful truth is the gospel in a nutshell. God loves us and has given us His Son to pay the price for our sin. God’s expectation is simply that we believe and accept His gift of grace.

 

Scripture Readings

Jeremiah 31:31-34
The Lord promises a new covenant

Romans 3:19-23    
We are justified by faith

John 8:31-36
The truth sets us free

Would you do me a favour?

Whenever someone asks: “Would you do me a favour please?” I usually want to know what the favour is before answering. Some favours can be ok, but others are not. Two of Jesus’ disciples asked a favour of Him which was not ok. They wanted Him to give them places of highest honour in His glory, but this was not even His to give.

Not surprisingly the other ten disciples became angry when they heard about it. You can imagine the tension which would have been present between them. Following Jesus is not about personal prestige and power; it is about submitting to the Will of God and serving Him. Even the Son did not come to be served, but to serve (Mark 10:45).

 

Scripture Readings

Job 38:1-7, 34-38   
The Lord challenges Job

Hebrews 5:1-10
Jesus the Great High Priest

Mark 10:35-45
The request of James and John

He has blessings for everyone

What a great invitation we have from Jesus. He said: receive the kingdom of God like a little child. As children are open and trusting of their parents, so we are free to be that way with God. He offers blessings now and for ever through Jesus and all He asks is that we receive them like a child receives a gift from its’ parents. You are a child of God and He loves you with His whole heart.

 

Scripture Readings

Psalm 139: 14-18

Hebrews 4: 12-16

Mark 10: 13-16

There are no Black Sheep here

Most families have someone who is “the black sheep” of the family. That person is a bit different to the rest, either by lifestyle choices or behaviour. But it is comforting to know that in God’s family there are no “black sheep”. The Bible says: all have sinned and fallen short of God’s glory, but we are justified by grace, through faith in Jesus Christ (Romans 3:23).

Jesus makes us holy through His death and resurrection, and we are all members of His family. In the letter to the Hebrews we read: the One who makes us holy and we who are made holy are of the same family. Jesus is not ashamed to call us brothers and sisters (Hebrews 2:11). While it is an honour  to be in the Lord’s family, there are still a lot of “long-lost relatives” who need to know Him.

Scripture  Readings

Job 1:1, 2: 1-10
Job is tested

Hebrews 1:1-4, 2: 5-12 
God has spoken through Jesus

Mark 10: 2-16 
Jesus speaks to the crowds

Spot the Christian

One day Jesus said: let your light shine so that people will see it and praise your Father in heaven (Matthew 5:16). People are meant to see a difference in us. Jesus also said: if your hand or your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. If your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out (Mark 9:42-47). If we took Him literally, it would be easy to spot the Christians. They would be the ones without hands, feet, and eyes!

Actually, Jesus was not promoting self-mutilation. He exaggerated to make a point. Often sin can only be conquered by radical “spiritual surgery”, the kind that must be performed by the Holy Spirit. But we need to be willing, obedient “patients” to undergo this kind of surgery. Our faith and our actions must be consistent with God.

 

Scripture Readings

 Numbers 11:4-6, 10-16, 24-29
Moses chooses seventy leaders

James 5:13-20
Prayer offered in faith

Mark 9:38-50
Acting in Jesus’ name

Come for a Chat & Cuppa

In the hall after each worship.
EVERYONE WELCOME

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