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63 minutes | 4 days ago
How Do You Get Past Obstacles in Your Life?
How do we move past the road blocks that try to stop our faith? Listen in to this next message in our Change Your City series – “Faith Blocks”. Follow along to find out… What happens you face an obstacle, a roadblock, or a barrier? Do you shut down? Get frustrated? Avoid or walk away? Matthew 17:24-27 24 On their arrival in Capernaum, the collectors of the Temple tax[a] came to Peter and asked him, “Doesn’t your teacher pay the Temple tax?”25 “Yes, he does,” Peter replied. Then he went into the house. But before he had a chance to speak, Jesus asked him, “What do you think, Peter?[b] Do kings tax their own people or the people they have conquered?[c]” 26 “They tax the people they have conquered,” Peter replied. “Well, then,” Jesus said, “the citizens are free! 27 However, we don’t want to offend them, so go down to the lake and throw in a line. Open the mouth of the first fish you catch, and you will find a large silver coin. Take it and pay the tax for both of us.” IXTHUS – “Jesus Christ, God’s Son, the Savior.” 1. Faith Block of “Not Enough” Believers can fail to act in the kingdom of God when they feel … they can feel like they are not enough so they fail to even try – they can feel like they don’t have enough resources, finances, or understanding…. and don’t try 26 “They tax the people they have conquered,” Peter replied. “Well, then,” Jesus said, “the citizens are free! 27 However, we don’t want to offend them, so go down to the lake and throw in a line. Open the mouth of the first fish you catch, and you will find a large silver coin. Take it and pay the tax for both of us.” To move past the faith block of not enough – go to Jesus first in what you lack. Jesus will speak to you in action – It will be something hard, or tough, and very personal. **But Jesus is testing / stretching you so that you stop focusing on what’s missing and focusing on what Jesus is providing.** 2. Faith Block of “Doubt” – Do you doubt Jesus is speaking to you? – Do you doubt He has chosen you to participate in the growth of this Kingdom? Most people do not fully understand what Jesus is speaking to them about so they shut down. They fail to comprehend what Jesus is speaking because they fail to spend time listening. The sermon last week – Peters mother in law was touched by Jesus then immediately started using her skill for the kingdom. We all were touched by the Jesus last week; but did you immediately start using your skill for the kingdom? The Holy Spirit revealed to us Monday, that most people did not because there was a Spiritual Blockage. And most would say it was lack of understanding, or knowing… **The Spiritual blockage of doubt prevents movement in the kingdom of God.** Luke 24 41 Still they stood there in disbelief, filled with joy and wonder. Then he asked them, “Do you have anything here to eat?” 42 They gave him a piece of broiled fish, 43 and he ate it as they watched.44 Then he said, “When I was with you before, I told you that everything written about me in the law of Moses and the prophets and in the Psalms must be fulfilled.” 45 Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures. **The Spiritual blockage of doubt is broken through what you give to Jesus.** vs 45…. then he opened their minds… Doing Life Together – What does luke 24:41-45 mean to you? What are you going to do this week that is different than weeks prior? Be accountable to each other. If someone says something get their number and check up. 3.Faith Block of “changing your city” Changing your city is not a sermon series….. it’s a LIFESTYLE that every believer is enrolled in the moment they call Jesus Lord. We are all called to change our own city. 15 That evening the disciples came to him and said, “This is a remote place, and it’s already getting late. Send the crowds away so they can go to the villages and buy food for themselves.”16 But Jesus said, “That isn’t necessary—you feed them.” 17 “But we have only five loaves of bread and two fish!” they answered. 18 “Bring them here,” he said. 19 Then he told the people to sit down on the grass. Jesus took the five loaves and two fish, looked up toward heaven, and blessed them. Then, breaking the loaves into pieces, he gave the bread to the disciples, who distributed it to the people. 20 They all ate as much as they wanted, and afterward, the disciples picked up twelve baskets of leftovers. Jesus is Jesus… Disciples are all believers… the crowd is our different cities… the bread and fish are what we have to offer. It’s not enough without Jesus. We will change our cities if we are willing to participate and be involved in the group project known as vision. Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. Next Steps – Seek the Lord. Jesus will reward you with what you need to change your city. Hold someone else accountable. Check in. See how they are doing in seeking the Lord in the coming weeks.
55 minutes | 12 days ago
What Happens When We Go Beyond Church?
All believers have had some personal experience with Jesus. We were touched and our Spirits were restored. Our physical or mental health may have also been restored. Beyond Church is where your God given skills make room for Jesus to change your city. “Beyond Church” is the next message in our “Change Your City” series. Mark 1 29 After Jesus left the synagogue with James and John, they went to Simon and Andrew’s home. 30 Now Simon’s mother-in-law was sick in bed with a high fever. They told Jesus about her right away. 31 So he went to her bedside, took her by the hand, and helped her sit up. Then the fever left her, and she prepared a meal for them. 32 That evening after sunset, many sick and demon-possessed people were brought to Jesus. 33 The whole town gathered at the door to watch. 34 So Jesus healed many people who were sick with various diseases, and he cast out many demons. But because the demons knew who he was, he did not allow them to speak. If you are listening to this message now or sitting here today and haven’t had a personal experience with Jesus yet, and you want to begin your relationship with Jesus, would you be so bold and email email@example.com; or direct message us on any social media platform. Just search Lighthouse 805. The thing that stands out in this story is that Peters mother-in-law was touched by Jesus then immediately serves Him. Most of us today wrestle with what’s my kingdom contribution? What is my skill? What is my purpose? How am I serving the King of Kings? How am I impacting the Kingdom Of God? Peters mother-in-law made a meal for Jesus and everyone there. I think the miracle and meal together unlocked vs 32. Most of us have already been touched by Jesus. We just need to start walking in our skills, gifting, purpose… so that our City is Changed. __Identifying Your kingdom contribution, Skill, Purpose__ Based on Peter’s mother in law here are some basic attributes of turning your skill into a purpose. It Unifies – It brings people together, it isn’t divisive. It’s seasonal. The meal was for that precise moment. It will happen again. Most people do something once then and think its over. It strengthens – it was food to give nourishment to sustain what came next. It will build people up or strengthen them. It’s your skill – your kingdom contribution will look like you There is room for Jesus. Doing Life Together – 1 Peter 4:10-11 10 God has given each of you a gift from his great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another. 11 Do you have the gift of speaking? Then speak as though God himself were speaking through you. Do you have the gift of helping others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies. Then everything you do will bring glory to God through Jesus Christ. All glory and power to him forever and ever! Amen. The message translation Be generous with the different things God gave you, passing them around so all get in on it: if words, let it be God’s words; if help, let it be God’s hearty help. That way, God’s bright presence will be evident in everything through Jesus, and he’ll get all the credit. Talk about what this verse is speaking to you. Are you using the gifts God gave you beyond church? Talk about a gift you have and encourage the person you talk with. Mark 1: 32-34 32 That evening after sunset, many sick and demon-possessed people were brought to Jesus. 33 The whole town gathered at the door to watch. 34 So Jesus healed many people who were sick with various diseases, and he cast out many demons. But because the demons knew who he was, he did not allow them to speak. Why after sunset? In Bible times, the new day started when the sun went down. So if the sabbath was Sunday, they waited till first thing Monday to bring their friends and family to Jesus. Because on the sabbath it was the law to rest. REST is NOT RECOVERING from what was…. but actually PREPARING for what’s to come. Church is for hearing Jesus and learning what we should be acting on this coming week. Your skills will make room for Jesus to heal and save people through the week; but you need to understand the significance of Church preparing you for the mission of “Beyond Church”. 35 Before daybreak the next morning, Jesus got up and went out to an isolated place to pray. 36 Later Simon and the others went out to find him. 37 When they found him, they said, “Everyone is looking for you.” 38 But Jesus replied, “We must go on to other towns as well, and I will preach to them, too. That is why I came.” Your city will be changed if you posture yourself like Jesus: Prioritize relationships – God first, people second pray before doing know your mission – you are here to bring Jesus to others in all the towns in your city. NEXT STEPS – Go beyond Church this week. Start your Monday in prayer for direction like Jesus. Then use your skills for others like Peter’s mother in law. Lets change our city.
46 minutes | 19 days ago
Why Do I Keep Coming Up Empty?
Ever feel like you’re doing everything you know to do, but it just doesn’t amount to anything? Or what your trying to get never materializes? Sometimes we can find ourselves close to Jesus and still feel like our nets are empty. Listen to this message and build your faith to fill your nets. This is the message “Empty Nets” in our Change Your City series. Follow along here: Luke 5:1-11 One day as Jesus was standing by the Lake of Gennesaret, the people were crowding around him and listening to the word of God. 2 He saw at the water’s edge two boats, left there by the fishermen, who were washing their nets. 3 He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat. 4 When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” 5 Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.” 6 When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. 7 So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink. 8 When Simon Peter saw this, he fell at Jesus’ knees and said, “Go away from me, Lord; I am a sinful man!” 9 For he and all his companions were astonished at the catch of fish they had taken, 10 and so were James and John, the sons of Zebedee, Simon’s partners. Then Jesus said to Simon, “Don’t be afraid; from now on you will fish for people.” 11 So they pulled their boats up on shore, left everything and followed him. 1. The Shallows vs The Depths Shallows – Where Jesus speaks to us The depths – Where Jesus calls us to action James 2:14-17 What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. James 4:17 So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin. Doing Life Together – What is your depth with Jesus? What is He calling you to take action on? Luke 5:1-11 3 He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little from shore. Then he sat down and taught the people from the boat. 4 When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, “Put out into deep water, and let down the nets for a catch.” In the shallows and the depths there was Jesus, Peter, and a pile of empty nets. A continual empty net is an indicator that you need to move from the shallows to the depths If you feel like you are unproductive, if you are missing something even though you have Jesus. I challenge you to move to the depths like Peter and Jesus; and take action on the word of God. Take action on what the Holy Spirit is speaking to you about. You might say but I’ve tried before and it didn’t work…in order to change your city…. you gotta try again. Luke 5:1-11 5 Simon answered, “Master, we’ve worked hard all night and haven’t caught anything. But because you say so, I will let down the nets.” 6 When they had done so, they caught such a large number of fish that their nets began to break. 7 So they signaled their partners in the other boat to come and help them, and they came and filled both boats so full that they began to sink. Your faith-lead actions in changing your city will inspire others to do that same. 2. What does it take to be a successful fisherman? 5 Skills all fishermen need (and we need to change our city): Navigate the seas – position ourselves to fish where the fish are at. Catching fish – know what tool to use for the situation. How to communicate with our friends, family, neighbors, co workers…. Prepare the fish – they had to salt and brine the fish to last the journey. Are we equipping and our loved ones to last the journey of life? Export the fish – are we discipling our fish/family/friends to go change their cities? Repeat – keep fishing. Next Steps – Which part of the fisherman’s step are you on? Finish your step and move onto the next one.
51 minutes | 23 days ago
You Can Stand Under My Umbrella
Ever get stuck in a storm without an umbrella? Wet, cold, miserable? As we continue our Change Your City series – todays message, “Under Authority” is about getting under the authority of God. Like an umbrella. Matthew 8:5-13 5 When Jesus returned to Capernaum, a Roman officer[a] came and pleaded with him, 6 “Lord, my young servant[b] lies in bed, paralyzed and in terrible pain.” 7 Jesus said, “I will come and heal him.” 8 But the officer said, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come into my home. Just say the word from where you are, and my servant will be healed. 9 I know this because I am under the authority of my superior officers, and I have authority over my soldiers. I only need to say, ‘Go,’ and they go, or ‘Come,’ and they come. And if I say to my slaves, ‘Do this,’ they do it.” 10 When Jesus heard this, he was amazed. Turning to those who were following him, he said, “I tell you the truth, I haven’t seen faith like this in all Israel! 11 And I tell you this, that many Gentiles will come from all over the world—from east and west—and sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob at the feast in the Kingdom of Heaven. 12 But many Israelites—those for whom the Kingdom was prepared—will be thrown into outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” 13 Then Jesus said to the Roman officer, “Go back home. Because you believed, it has happened.” And the young servant was healed that same hour. The servant had palsy – we know this from Luke 7 and the research of theologians. Palsy is when the head gives a command the body doesn’t listen to or act on. One symptom is the body has tremors – meaning that the body acts on its own accord outside of what the head speaks. The reason this story is critical – It not only demonstrates that Jesus divinely heals…. but It shows the state of the Church. The head (Jesus) has been speaking but the Body (humanity) is not listening or acting on it. The Church had or has an authority issue. Luke 7 gives additional background on the Centurion… Luke 7:4-5 4 So they earnestly begged Jesus to help the man. “If anyone deserves your help, he does,” they said, 5 “for he loves the Jewish people and even built a synagogue for us.” The body failed to build the church… the centurion saw the need of the body to be under authority of the head and begin restoring it. Matthew 28:18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Acts 5:29 But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men. *Doing life together* Have you gone beyond acknowledging Jesus is your authority? Are you taking action on all that the head is speaking? What area of your life do you need to come under the authority of Jesus? How to start getting under authority… Mark 8:8 8 But the officer said, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come into my home. Just say the word from where you are, and my servant will be healed. Centurion didn’t need Jesus to physically show up in his house…. he needed the Word of God to say it is so…. The centurion knew wherever Jesus was, His word is the authority…. Jesus is sitting alive in heaven on His throne – the head – in full authority. Do you have the faith that His word has full authority? Picture the authority of Jesus as an umbrella….(the head, the covering) Are you holding the authority above you? Like an umbrella it’s up to you to remain under that authority. Jesus is speaking are you, as the body – acting, moving, participating in the kingdom of God?? You cannot change your city if you are outside of the authority of Jesus. When you leave the covering of Jesus: you will leave His favor, you will leave His protection. Insight: I believe Jesus allows failure or the taste of failure to linger in our lives at times, to know what it’s like being outside of the authority of Jesus. 10 When Jesus heard this, he was amazed. Turning to those who were following him, he said, “I tell you the truth, I haven’t seen faith like this in all Israel! Jesus was amazed another time… remember Mark 6:1-6 Jesus left that part of the country and returned with his disciples to Nazareth, his hometown. 2 The next Sabbath he began teaching in the synagogue, and many who heard him were amazed. They asked, “Where did he get all this wisdom and the power to perform such miracles?” 3 Then they scoffed, “He’s just a carpenter, the son of Mary and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas, and Simon. And his sisters live right here among us.” They were deeply offended and refused to believe in him. 4 Then Jesus told them, “A prophet is honored everywhere except in his own hometown and among his relatives and his own family.” 5 And because of their unbelief, he couldn’t do any miracles among them except to place his hands on a few sick people and heal them. 6 And he was amazed at their unbelief. The people saw Jesus not as an authority, but as common everyday Jesus. Have you allowed yourself to see Jesus as your authority or as ordinary? Your faith and the potential faith of others around you is dependent on you coming under authority. NEXT STEPS – Take a good look at yourself and repent of any area you’re keeping outside of Jesus’ authority. Then purposefully submit to the fullness of Gods authority.
51 minutes | a month ago
“I Got This!”
What the three little words you hear right before someone does something crazy? “I got this” – is typically the attitude, mantra, or phrase uttered moments before something crazy or awesome happens. In changing your city, there will be obstacles – fear, nerves, distractions… we need to have an attitude of “I got this” that takes us beyond our comfort and into our calling. Mark 2:1-12 – 2 A few days later, when Jesus again entered Capernaum, the people heard that he had come home. 2 They gathered in such large numbers that there was no room left, not even outside the door, and he preached the word to them. 3 Some men came, bringing to him a paralyzed man, carried by four of them. 4 Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus by digging through it and then lowered the mat the man was lying on. 5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralyzed man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.” 6 Now some teachers of the law were sitting there, thinking to themselves, 7 “Why does this fellow talk like that? He’s blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone?” 8 Immediately Jesus knew in his spirit that this was what they were thinking in their hearts, and he said to them, “Why are you thinking these things? 9 Which is easier: to say to this paralyzed man, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up, take your mat and walk’? 10 But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the man, 11 “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.” 12 He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this!” Changing your city starts with going beyond your comfort.. Capernaum means village of comfort. Here, in the middle of comfort… was a group of 5 friends. And one of those friends was paralyzed. Here we are back to those 3 groups of people around Jesus – The friends placing complete faith in Jesus above their own comfort, taking next steps. The crowd listening and not doing anything – not taking next steps The Pharisees – watching and judging and pushing back trying to stop any next steps. We need to have the attitude of “I Got This”. When you begin changing your city – you will face obstacles on the way. Here’s 4 we see in this passage: CROWD – people will unknowingly or unconsciously block you or prevent you. Have you ever had someone say something like oh thats dumb. or why would you do that. They never give what they said a second thought, but for us its something we can dwell on. Wow, they don’t think I can do it, maybe I shouldn’t. ROOF – every year had to be redone right before winter. It was something that was easily removed and replaced. I see the roof as our own self worth, or insecurities. Something that only blocks you and no one else. Jeremiah 17:7 “But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him.” Doing Life Together – What is your roof? How are you going to trust Jesus? How are you going to place confidence in Jesus? What does the verse Jeremiah 17:7 mean to you? PHARISEES – judgement (first public confrontation with the teachers of the law). The enemy intentionally trying to block or prevent you. BELIEF – was an obstacle – belief that your sin, or pain, or situation is greater than Jesus. 9 Which is easier: to say to this paralyzed man, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up, take your mat and walk’? 10 But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the man, 11 “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.” 12 He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this!” How do we overcome obstacles? 1. Jesus – He is in your corner. He is speaks on your behalf. What this looks like is proclaiming the word of God in front of the enemy, during healing, through salvation. “But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.” 1 Cor. 15:57 2. Doing life together – Friends. Interesting the friends faced obstacles before getting to Jesus. The obstacle of people. The obstacle of self worth. Jesus and doing life with other people will help you when you face mental and emotional obstacles. Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 – 9 Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed. 10 If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble. 11 Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone? 12 A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken. NEXT STEPS – Bring your city to Jesus. Is there someone like the man on the mat? Someone who doesn’t know Jesus, or needs Jesus? I challenge you to have the attitude of “I’ve got this!” and message them, mail them a card, call them, something to initiate the conversation this week.
45 minutes | a month ago
Have You Gotten Too Comfortable?
Have you gotten too comfortable with being comfortable? Have you ever been so comfortable on the couch and the remote was too far away? Where you allowed the next episode or show to start playing? Like your comfort allowed the world chose what you would take in? This is the issue with most believers…. Their comfort has become more important than their calling. This is the first message in our sermon series “Change Your City” – Christ Calls. This sermon series is focused around the city of Capernaum in the Bible. The city that Jesus ministered in. And it’s interesting to note that Capernaum means “village of comfort”. This sermon series is all about changing your city. Our city is different even if it has the same name. Our individual cities are the places/people we interact with all the time. Where our unique talents, gifts, and passions are known and live. But one thing we all need to understand before you start trying to change your city – Is that the only way your city can be changed is BY Jesus THROUGH you. Its starts with His calling of you. Matthew 4:18-20 18 Now as Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee, He saw two brothers, Simon who was called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. 19 And He *said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.” 20 Immediately they left their nets and followed Him. Our responsibility – follow Jesus His responsibility – Jesus does the changing and transforming We follow him: He makes us (He equips us) Jesus is transforming you as you follow Him. You do not make yourself. You do not become who Jesus calls you to be without Jesus… 1 Thessalonians 2:13 – Therefore, we never stop thanking God that when you received his message from us, you didn’t think of our words as mere human ideas. You accepted what we said as the very word of God—which, of course, it is. And this word continues to work in you who believe. Doing Life together – What are you believing God to work on in your life as you follow and believe in Him? Have you been trying to fix or solve it yourself? How do you allow and believe Jesus will work on you? We can’t change our city unless we understand Jesus has called us to; and in that calling He equips us and works on us. In Capernaum there were 3 main groups of people that interacted with Jesus those that followed. those that received but remained comfortable. those that came against what He was doing. Let’s look at what happened to the people in groups 2 & 3… Note: People fought to rebuke Jesus to remain comfortable. Will you fight against being a follower of Jesus to remain comfortable? Matt. 11:23-24 – 23 And you, Capernaum, will not be exalted to heaven, will you? You will descend to Hades; for if the miracles had occurred in Sodom which occurred in you, it would have remained to this day. 24 Nevertheless I say to you that it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for you.” Jesus rejected and rebuked Capernaum because they witnessed and saw all the miracles but didn’t follow Him – their faith was nothing more than routines, rituals and rules. Remember the couch example? Group 1 – the people that followed Jesus we know what happened. That’s how we got the New Testament, Jesus leads you out of comfort and into calling. Have you ever noticed that when leaving comfort and entering calling… sometimes things go wrong, get hard, or act like a storm in our lives? It happens today and it also happened back then. Mark 4:35-41 – 35 That day when evening came, he said to his disciples, “Let us go over to the other side.” 36 Leaving the crowd behind, they took him along, just as he was, in the boat. There were also other boats with him. 37 A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. 38 Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” 39 He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm. 40 He said to his disciples, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” Some of you will chose to follow Jesus this sermon series. You will step out of comfort and into your calling – you will go after this season to reach your city. You will leave your comfort and face a storm… which may cause you to panic. All you need to remember is remain steady on your faith… re-listen to the Faith Check sermon series and set Jesus as your foundation. In leaving Capernaum the first storm occurred. In leaving your place of comfort a storm might happen. Do you have the faith needed to keep moving forward? NEXT STEPS: Begin praying and fasting that the Holy Spirit would reveal how to change YOUR city.
53 minutes | 2 months ago
Who Are We? We Are Lighthouse!
Who are we? Our Church logo is a lighthouse. It is purposefully the shape of the cross and embodies who we are as disciples of Jesus. We understand the shape of the cross and lighthouse from the 2 greatest commandments: Mark 12:28-31 28 One of the teachers of religious law was standing there listening to the debate. He realized that Jesus had answered well, so he asked, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?” 29 Jesus replied, “The most important commandment is this: ‘Listen, O Israel! The Lord our God is the one and only Lord. 30 And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.’ 31 The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ No other commandment is greater than these.” I want to break down the vertical and horizontal from the lighthouse which is the cross : Vertical – We are built on the foundation of the rock that is Jesus. We are powered by the Holy Spirit from within, like the power that courses through the lighthouse allowing the light to shine; We always are focused up towards the Father and our future home in heaven. * Foundation in Jesus Psalm 119:105 105 Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path. * Power source of Holy Spirit Psalm 18:28 28 You, LORD, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light. * Always pointing towards the Father and future home in heaven *We act out that “Vertical” alignment by taking “Next Steps” to: Grow and build on our foundation of Jesus. Keep our power source like the lighthouse going, and focused on the Father in heaven, our destination. Matthew 7:24-27 24 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” Horizontal – A burnt out lighthouse will allow and tolerate tragedy in its appointed location. Lighthouses were built to help guide people home. To prevent death and tragedy. Too many believers stop at “Love God” and forget that Jesus also said “Love Your Neighbor”. You are appointed in your city. You are a lighthouse. On the arms of the cross what was nailed? The arms of Jesus. Wide open to love an accept everyone. As we continue growing in our relationship with Jesus our arms need to be reaching out to our city, our loved ones, our community…His arms and the light of the lighthouse are what we need to remember. It’s reaching out to change our city. Matthew 5:16 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. John 9:5 5 While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” ****DOING LIFE TOGETHER**** Jesus is in the world through you. What does this verse mean to you? * We live out this “horizontal” alignment by “Doing Life Together”: The single greatest way to save a life, offer a future, show what home really is, shed light, repeal the darkness.?… Keep your light shining into peoples lives you connect with. We need to be lighthouses in our communities. Like tiny fires. Mark 3:13–14 13 Jesus went up on a mountainside and called to him those he wanted, and they came to him. 14 He appointed twelve that they might be with him and that he might send them out to preach God has been speaking to me relentlessly to study Pastor Paul of the Bible. I want to unpack the vision of Lighthouse 805 Church in a practical sense through what the Holy Spirit has revealed through Pastor Paul. I want to shed light on where we are headed, because I need us all to start grasping the direction of Lighthouse. If you don’t fully understand it in this 10-15 min that’s ok, I just need you to have joy and an open heart to begin receiving from the Holy Spirit. – We need joy and listening to the Holy Spirit. – What we don’t need is complaining, grumbling and gossip. Paul – Pastor Paul of the Bible – he reached 3 groups of people – local, distant, future Paul discipled his people locally – in jail, 1 on 1, and groups. Paul discipled people at a distance through his letters. These groups received the letters and did next steps to grow, disciple, and do life together. Paul discipled the future because the letters stood the test of time for groups to receive and take next steps and do life together even now. I heard a warning from the Holy spirit. Our Church is called to creatively place His word into communities. That’s where life will happen. It’s not about having content online that will change lives. Where we are headed is doing community in Ventura, while raising up and discipling communities across the nation. So as we meet Sunday morning and have the word we will do life together and take next steps in Jesus. There will be living rooms with friends and families and coworkers watching the message and doing life together and taking next steps together. There was a Word spoken over us a long time ago. We are called to pastor a dual church. I know it is the Holy Spirit birthing something in us… as we pastor in Ventura – doing life together and taking next steps…. we pastor and disciple these other Lighthouse communities. We will have failed if all we do is put sermons online and hope someone watches it. If you are watching this message online and are interested in being a Lighthouse community – wether it’s opening your home up or even leading a community regardless of location, where you want to do life together and take next steps in Jesus, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. One of the clearest images of vision we’ve had was the necessity of making the stage inside the church into a living room; because we are going to be an extension of your living room. Next Sunday some of you are joining us in person on the lawn for live service. For those who are not in the 805, here’s a challenge – meet on the lawn with someone where you are. Invite someone to Church in your home, outside your home, in your backyard. .. Whatever you feel comfortable with in covid times. And make sure you give us a shout out in the comments and chat… take some pictures and post! YOUR NEXT STEP is into the next season – This week pray how you can be a lighthouse and THEN DO what the Holy Spirit reveals. Some of you started having visions of people on your lawn, of a small community that does life together…. Begin praying for the Holy Spirit to strengthen you and message us to begin equipping you. This sermon marks the end of a season AND the start of a season. I believe not only for our church but for you watching or listening to this now.
39 minutes | 2 months ago
What is Faith Forward?
How do you move your faith forward? Or how to do you live a life from a place of faith? Where it’s at the forefront of everything you do… everything you are. And why would or should you? That’s the subject of todays Faith Check message “Faith Forward”. Let’s look at the gold standard of faith from Jeremiah. Jeremiah 15:16 When I discovered your words, I devoured them. They are my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, O Lord God of Heaven’s Armies. Step 1: Search and discover His Word for today, for now, for this season… always. Step 2: Devour them like a good taco. Take it in and chew on it, absorb the life giving qualities. Step 3: My Joy and Heart’s Delight = They bring mental health, emotional health and spiritual health. Step 4: I bear Your name = Because I’m called by Jesus; I can call on Jesus We’re always talking about looking at the scriptures in context – Let’s do a faith check on Jeremiah… Jeremiah chapter 15… the “gold standard of faith” verse is found right in the middle of this chapter; right in the middle of a gripe session from Jeremiah to God. “I have to deliver Your word to these people. Jeremiah is upset…And now…. They don’t like me. They hurt me. And where are You? ” The best verse in this chapter is: Jeremiah 15:20 nasb Therefore, thus says the Lord, “If you return, then I will restore you— Before Me you will stand; And if you extract the precious from the worthless, You will become My spokesman. They for their part may turn to you, But as for you, you must not turn to them. “Extract the precious from the worthless” ***Doing life in the comments.*** What are worthless thoughts you can ditch and some Word you can put in their place? Jeremiah 15:20 (The Message) “Take back those words, and I’ll take you back. Then you’ll stand tall before me. Use words truly and well. Don’t stoop to cheap whining. Then, but only then, you’ll speak for me. Let your words change them. Don’t change your words to suit them. Break down this verse… Proverbs 3:5 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.” 15. Romans 8:6 “For to set the mind on the flesh is death, but to set the mind on the Spirit is life and peace.” 16. Romans 12:2 “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Repent of the worthless, cheap, pointless words that you have used Replace with living, encouraging, fulfilling words. “Let your words change them…. Don’t change your words to suit them.” NEXT STEPS: Use your words with the authority of God. Let’s take an audit of our words this week and make sure we are sifting through for the life giving, fulfilling words; and letting go of the worthless, cheap, useless stuff.
56 minutes | 2 months ago
How do you develop strong faith?
Wondering how to develop strong faith? Faith in the face of attacks, turmoil, …life? In this latest message of our Faith Check series “Strong Faith” – we’ll look at Jeremiah’s strong faith and how it got there. Jeremiah 1:17-19 17 “Get up and prepare for action. Go out and tell them everything I tell you to say. Do not be afraid of them, or I will make you look foolish in front of them. 18 For see, today I have made you strong like a fortified city that cannot be captured, like an iron pillar or a bronze wall. You will stand against the whole land— the kings, officials, priests, and people of Judah. 19 They will fight you, but they will fail. For I am with you, and I will take care of you. I, the Lord, have spoken!” Jeremiahs responsibility was to prepare and proclaim…. that’s our responsibility also. That is how we gain a strong faith. Get up – prepare for action Some translations say gird your loins – meaning tuck your robe into your belt cause you are about to run. The more we develop our faith the more we need to be ready to listen and act on the Word of the Lord. Tell them everything I tell you to say. – say what the Holy Spirit speaks to you about. Tell everything the Lord says. Don’t add to it. Don’t take away. Do not be afraid of them – or God will make you look foolish Jeremiah 1:18-19 18 For see, today I have made you strong like a fortified city that cannot be captured, like an iron pillar or a bronze wall. You will stand against the whole land— the kings, officials, priests, and people of Judah. 19 They will fight you, but they will fail. For I am with you, and I will take care of you. I, the Lord, have spoken!” Jeremiahs responsibility was preparation and proclamation. Gods responsibility is preservation… Doing life together in the comments: How does Jesus preserve you? Today I have made you strong….. foundation in Jesus. Strength comes from God making us strong….. and when does he make us strong? Today!!!! He makes us strong. When a city was fortified the enemy couldn’t overtake it. It was a waiting game. Either the enemy went somewhere else or the people in the city starved and let the enemy in…. Too many believers get surrounded by the enemy and allow themselves to starve and eventually cave…. Your nourishment comes from the Lord strengthening you daily. Preserving you with His word. Eternally: He preserves your soul. In turmoil: He preserves your mind, heart, life. He preserves us through the enemy, through life situations…. because He is with us. Your faith is strong because Jesus preserves you through preparing and proclaiming His Word. There is this imagery in Jeremiah 20:11-13 of what it looks like when Jesus preserves us through our preparation and proclamation of His word. 11 But the Lord stands beside me like a great warrior. Before him my persecutors will stumble. They cannot defeat me. They will fail and be thoroughly humiliated. Their dishonor will never be forgotten. 12 O Lord of Heaven’s Armies, you test those who are righteous, and you examine the deepest thoughts and secrets. Let me see your vengeance against them, for I have committed my cause to you. 13 Sing to the Lord! Praise the Lord! For though I was poor and needy, he rescued me from my oppressors. YOUR NEXT STEP: Make sure your faith is strong: Prepare and proclaim His word. Get a verse this week for your life to meditate on and start proclaiming it. Double down on next steps – I want you to start preparing this verse in your spirit and begin proclaiming it… Matthew 5:14-16 14 “You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven. Our next season and sermon series is “Change Your City.” The sermon series will be hyper-focused on everything happening in and around Capernaum in the Bible. And Matthew 5:14-16 happens just outside of Capernaum. Would you begin proclaiming the word of God over our next season with me?
59 minutes | 2 months ago
Is Your Faith Reliable?
Have you ever been expecting or needing something from someone who is not reliable? We all know what it feels like to hope this time they will come through. And we all know what it feels like when they don’t… again. Today’s Faith Check message is titled “Reliable Faith”. We’re going to look at the difference between putting our faith in something that’s unreliable verses what is reliable – God. Because He is always reliable. Jeremiah 1:11-12 11 Then the Lord said to me, “Look, Jeremiah! What do you see?” And I replied, “I see a branch from an almond tree.” 12 And the Lord said, “That’s right, and it means that I am watching, and I will certainly carry out all my plans.” There is a play on sounds here in the Hebrew text. The word translated almond (shaqēd) has the same root as the word hasten (shōqēd). As the early blossoming almond tree gave promise of the later spring fruit, so God would watch over His word to bring it to fruition. God will always carry out His plans – God is always reliable. Todays message is called ‘Reliable Faith.’ Unreliable faith is: Unreliable faith is when we place our faith in anything but Jesus. When we establish idols and put our hope and trust there. (Social media, news, other people like family, our job, ….) Unreliable faith is actions without relationship. (I’m a good person I volunteer, I serve, I give…. but I don’t know Jesus.) Unreliable Faith is a relationship without actions. (I’m saved, but I don’t do anything with it) Matthew 7:12-27 21 “Not everyone who calls out to me, ‘Lord! Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven. Only those who actually do the will of my Father in heaven will enter. 22 On judgment day many will say to me, ‘Lord! Lord! We prophesied in your name and cast out demons in your name and performed many miracles in your name.’ 23 But I will reply, ‘I never knew you. Get away from me, you who break God’s laws.’ 24 “Anyone who listens to my teaching and follows it is wise, like a person who builds a house on solid rock. 25 Though the rain comes in torrents and the floodwaters rise and the winds beat against that house, it won’t collapse because it is built on bedrock. 26 But anyone who hears my teaching and doesn’t obey it is foolish, like a person who builds a house on sand. 27 When the rains and floods come and the winds beat against that house, it will collapse with a mighty crash.” Reliable faith is only through Jesus. **Underline or circle all the times YOU or YOUR is mentioned in this scripture…** Jeremiah 29:10-14 10 This is what the Lord says: “You will be in Babylon for seventy years. But then I will come and do for you all the good things I have promised, and I will bring you home again. 11 For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. 12 In those days when you pray, I will listen. 13 If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me. 14 I will be found by you,” says the Lord. “I will end your captivity and restore your fortunes. I will gather you out of the nations where I sent you and will bring you home again to your own land.” Are we keying into the fact that Faith Check is all about “your relationship with Jesus”? Babylon represents earth…. home is heaven. When your mind focuses on the future and hope that is Jesus in Heaven – nothing else compares: frustrations situations health telling people about Jesus Reliable faith is… When you pray He listens If you look with your whole heart you will find Jesus Jesus has to be found by you – just because your grandma prays doesn’t give you an automatic get into heaven card. This is a two-way relationship. Let’s talk about the coronavirus for a second. Do a faith check right now… Do you hyper-focus more on the conspiracy theories, the political climate, or even dwell more on what used to be…. Or do you allow the Holy Spirit to speak to you for a second about the uncertainty of this world and realize the urgency for Jesus? How is your relationship with Jesus? Genuinely asking. Will you be the one that gets to heaven and says Lord Lord, and hear from Jesus? or I don’t know you? Next Steps: Make this the Sunday that you start, build, or strengthen your relationship with Jesus. Jesus is Reliable! But it starts with your reliable faith.
56 minutes | 3 months ago
What is the Cost of Faith?
Ever walked away from that dream purchase because of sticker shock? What if the real cost is not the advertised cost? What if you could have got it at manufacturers cost rather than retail; and all you had to do was ask? As believers, the cost of faith in our minds may feel or seem like one thing; but have we checked with the manufacturer…. Jesus? This is the next message in our Faith Check series – Cost of Faith. We are looking deeply at the book of Jeremiah and how the church in exile was able to grow their Faith through all circumstances. Nike Store Jeremiah 1:4 NIV – “The word of the Lord came to me, saying,” Message – “This is what God said” As your pastor I’m wondering….have you checked your faith yet? Or are you being like Samuel. 1 Samuel 3:1-11 1The boy Samuel ministered before the Lord under Eli. In those days the word of the Lord was rare; there were not many visions. 2 One night Eli, whose eyes were becoming so weak that he could barely see, was lying down in his usual place. 3 The lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the house of the Lord, where the ark of God was. 4 Then the Lord called Samuel. Samuel answered, “Here I am.” 5 And he ran to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” But Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.” So he went and lay down. 6 Again the Lord called, “Samuel!” And Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” “My son,” Eli said, “I did not call; go back and lie down.” 7 Now Samuel did not yet know the Lord: The word of the Lord had not yet been revealed to him. 8 A third time the Lord called, “Samuel!” And Samuel got up and went to Eli and said, “Here I am; you called me.” Then Eli realized that the Lord was calling the boy. 9 So Eli told Samuel, “Go and lie down, and if he calls you, say, ‘Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.’” So Samuel went and lay down in his place. 10 The Lord came and stood there, calling as at the other times, “Samuel! Samuel!” Then Samuel said, “Speak, for your servant is listening.” 11 And the Lord said to Samuel: “See, I am about to do something in Israel that will make the ears of everyone who hears about it tingle. Samuel lived in the church Served in the church Was a church leader AND didn’t know how to listen to God. Didn’t know the sound of Gods voice. Thought the only way to hear the voice of God was through the lead pastor. The pivotal moment in Samuels life and Jeremiahs life was hearing God and acting on what they heard. We keep bringing up “Next Steps” as actions based on hearing the Word of God. Our Church’s goal is 2 parts – Help you gain a desire to hear God and take action on it. Be like Samuel and Jeremiah after being able to hear God and act on it – Next Steps. Help you gain a desire to bring the living God into your spheres of influence. What we call doing life together. The next season of our church has a very specific vision. – Reach Your City. We may live in the same area code but our cities are different. My city is board game nerds, website visionaries, and digital artists. My city is comic book stores, my city is online video games. In preparation for the day we open on the front lawn (which is soon)… Be praying and fasting for the vision to be caught by yourself and others. That we all would have a desire to hear God through reading His word, prayer time, and the messages. That we would desire to apply it to our lives. That we would gain the confidence to speak life into people in our spheres of influence (our cities). Todays message is Cost of Faith…. which is desire Do you desire to hear from God and act on it? Do you desire to bring Jesus to people that you do life with? Boys and their games. Everything is competing for your desire. Jeremiah 1:4-9 4 The Lord gave me this message: 5 “I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.” 6 “O Sovereign Lord,” I said, “I can’t speak for you! I’m too young!” 7 The Lord replied, “Don’t say, ‘I’m too young,’ for you must go wherever I send you and say whatever I tell you. 8 And don’t be afraid of the people, for I will be with you and will protect you. I, the Lord, have spoken!” 9 Then the Lord reached out and touched my mouth and said, “Look, I have put my words in your mouth! The Holy Spirit will handle all excuses and problems. But you gotta handle the desire to hear the voice of the Lord and act on it. Identity is like a fingerprint from God – no finger print matches. Every single one is unique. And that is your identity from God. Divinely unique. God ordained YOU to be good enough to deliver His words. Your inexperience, your age, how long you’ve been a believer doesn’t matter to God. In fact He rebukes it, and says you go where I send you, and you say whatever I tell you. And don’t be afraid of the people! Doing life in the comments – What is an excuse you need to let the Holy Spirit deal with? Luke 6:46-49 46 “So why do you keep calling me ‘Lord, Lord!’ when you don’t do what I say? 47 I will show you what it’s like when someone comes to me, listens to my teaching, and then follows it. 48 It is like a person building a house who digs deep and lays the foundation on solid rock. When the floodwaters rise and break against that house, it stands firm because it is well built. 49 But anyone who hears and doesn’t obey is like a person who builds a house right on the ground, without a foundation. When the floods sweep down against that house, it will collapse into a heap of ruins.” Your NEXT STEPS this week…. Fast and pray to hear the voice of the Lord. Act on it in your life and Share it in the spheres of influence (YOUR CITY) around you. We are headed to our next season – “Reach your City” we need to begin now.
56 minutes | 3 months ago
What is Unshakeable Faith?
What does it mean to have unshakable faith? Constant, unfailing, indisputable, without question…It all starts with having Jesus as our foundation – last weeks bones give us the ability to move and carry forward. In this weeks message “Faith Check – Unshakeable Faith”, we look at just that. Confident constant faith that carries you through the storms of life, verses riding the waves like a roller coaster. Just a reminder – Salvation and foundation are different. Last week the challenge was for the Church to seek the Holy Spirit in how we need to individually make Jesus our foundation, so that we can move into the next season carrying the vision from the Holy Spirit. This week – How do we keep moving with the vision? Jeremiah 51:59-64 59 This is the message Jeremiah the prophet gave to the staff officer Seraiah son of Neriah, the son of Mahseiah, when he went to Babylon with Zedekiah king of Judah in the fourth year of his reign. 60 Jeremiah had written on a scroll about all the disasters that would come upon Babylon—all that had been recorded concerning Babylon. 61 He said to Seraiah, “When you get to Babylon, see that you read all these words aloud. 62 Then say, ‘Lord, you have said you will destroy this place, so that neither people nor animals will live in it; it will be desolate forever.’ 63 When you finish reading this scroll, tie a stone to it and throw it into the Euphrates. 64 Then say, ‘So will Babylon sink to rise no more because of the disaster I will bring on her. And her people will fall.’” The words of Jeremiah end here. Here he passes the baton. The story shifts perspective onto Seraiah Seraiah—Yahweh has prevailed … in other words – Jesus Won! Won and done. Our faith on Jesus comes from the past… Jesus won. I’m not sitting around questioning Jesus or my faith or reality. I am confident Jesus won. Let’s do life together in the comments and start proclaiming what Jesus already won over. I dare you to be bold and proclaim things that might feel scary right now, but pick up the inheritance of deliverance that belongs to you and proclaim it. Doing life in the comments – Proclaim what Jesus has Victory over! When I feel hopeless and hurting I fast forward 1000 years in my mind. I see myself worshipping Jesus laying in-front of His thrown in heaven. It calms every storm in my life. It keeps me grounded and reminds me that my faith isn’t a roller coaster ride – it’s unshakable. – Pastor Matt Let’s look at unshakable faith at the end of Jeremiahs story. Jeremiah in his final act – hands over the word of God to be carried, cast, then camped on. Carry the Word Cast the Word Camp on the Word We need to be doing this in 2 areas – The Church and Personal life Personally – It’s not good to be someone different at all the places you belong to. You need to have unshakable faith in all areas and all times of your life. Jesus is the center and everything we have circling around us truly circles around Him. ** If you are dealing with anxiety or control issues…. think of the sun having true control of the earth; and envision Jesus doing the same over your live. Break free of anxiety by trusting Jesus is in full control. Church – The fastest way to kill a church is to expect the pastor to be the only one to carry the word and vision from the Holy Spirit forward. The fastest way to grow a Church is to carry the word and vision daily alongside the pastor – not only is this infectious to others it transforms your mind, heart and attitude. ** Take action on the word and vision daily – if our church keeps saying it’s important that we are “doing life together” in this season; we need to find a way to do life together. When we move into a new season as a church we all move together. This week we are focused on external next steps Next Step – Encourage and pray for someone this week not in your home – then take it to the next level and invite them to communion or Ladies Art night and do life with them.
54 minutes | 3 months ago
What Is True Faith Built On?
What is our faith founded on? What gives it structure? Can it hold up to all life holds in store for us? In this next message in the Faith Check series – “True Faith”, we’re talking about just that… time to check our faith. We’re doing a deep dive on FAITH through the book and lens of Jeremiah. It’s about the faith of believers during their exile, paralleled to the exile of our church members from our building. Want to know what Lighthouse 805 Church is really like? Well today’s message is a pretty good look at how we operate. We keep it real. We’re a family. We are Holy Spirit lead. We speak truth to one another. Wondering why we aren’t meeting together in person yet? Tune in. Today we’re in Jeremiah 32 But first we’re going to look at Luke 6:47-49 “47Anyone who comes and listens to me and obeys me 48 is like someone who dug down deep and built a house on solid rock. When a flood came and the river rushed against the house, it was built so well that it didn’t even shake. 49 But anyone who hears what I say and doesn’t obey me is like someone whose house wasn’t built on solid rock. As soon as the river rushed against that house, it was smashed to pieces!” Your foundation is based on taking action from Jesus. Listen AND obey. They DUG deep, and BUILT. Not talking about salvation – we’re talking about foundation. Salvation is secured, but it’s a firm foundation that allows you to grow, receive, and move forward with Christ to the promises God has for us. What does your foundation look like right now? How many of us are finding excuses to not build in this season? Without this foundation set and built on in this current season; we will not be able to hold or carry or move in the vision God has for our next season. As your Pastor – I’m asking you to commit to making Jesus the foundation in your life now, in this season. Stop making excuses and get rid of anything that has taken up residence in your life distracting you from doing just that. Jeremiah 32:8-16 “8‘Then, just as the Lord had said, my cousin Hanamel came to me in the courtyard of the guard and said, “Buy my field at Anathoth in the territory of Benjamin. Since it is your right to redeem it and possess it, buy it for yourself.” ‘I knew that this was the word of the Lord; 9so I bought the field at Anathoth from my cousin Hanamel and weighed out for him seventeen shekels of silver. 10I signed and sealed the deed, had it witnessed, and weighed out the silver on the scales. 11I took the deed of purchase – the sealed copy containing the terms and conditions, as well as the unsealed copy – 12and I gave this deed to Baruch son of Neriah, the son of Mahseiah, in the presence of my cousin Hanamel and of the witnesses who had signed the deed and of all the Jews sitting in the courtyard of the guard. 13‘In their presence I gave Baruch these instructions: 14“This is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says: take these documents, both the sealed and unsealed copies of the deed of purchase, and put them in a clay jar so that they will last a long time. 15For this is what the Lord Almighty, the God of Israel, says: houses, fields and vineyards will again be bought in this land.” 16‘After I had given the deed of purchase to Baruch son of Neriah, I prayed to the Lord:” Purchase: What is the price we need to pay in this season of our church? – Time – Dedication – Pride – Reading and studying the Bible – Genuine worship – Take action on the Word of God Through the purchase/setting Jesus as the foundation – 3 things happened: Public – The purchase was done publicly and had witnesses. This makes us accountable and invites others to do the same. This current season is calling us to do life together outside of the 4 walls of a church building. There’s a reason for that. It’s foundation building. If we don’t actively do it we won’t be able to carry the vision for the new season God has for us. Preserve – Jeremiah asked the purchase documents to be stored in clay pots. This was to preserve them for some time, awhile, the future. The Dead Sea Scrolls lasted in clay pots for 2000 years. When we pay the price of making Jesus our foundation we are preserved. Our faith is stabilized. It doesn’t fluctuate up and down with the weather or circumstances. We are steady. Patience – “When are we getting back to normal?” “When will we return to normal?” Wrong questions…. Right question…. “Am I ready for the NEW normal?” Are we patiently preparing for the next season? This is not a passive patience. It’s like the patience of a farmer who diligently plows deep, straight, consistent furrows. Then sows the right seeds, in preparation of the next harvest. We’re not sitting with a book waiting for this season to be over; we’re like the farmer from sun up to sun down preparing for what’s coming. You can’t wait on a crop that hasn’t been planted. NEXT STEPS – Take action to set Jesus as the one and only foundation in your life.
41 minutes | 3 months ago
How do you have fruitful faith?
Is your faith genuine or fake? Real fruit or fruit flavored? Can it give nutrition, reproduce? Or does it rot over time, go stale? We’re continuing our deep dive into FAITH, in this message of our Faith Check series – Fruitful Faith. Jeremiah 24 After Jehoiachin son of Jehoiakim king of Judah and the officials, the skilled workers and the artisans of Judah were carried into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon by Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, the Lord showed me two baskets of figs placed in front of the temple of the Lord. 2 One basket had very good figs, like those that ripen early; the other basket had very bad figs, so bad they could not be eaten. 3 Then the Lord asked me, “What do you see, Jeremiah?” “Figs,” I answered. “The good ones are very good, but the bad ones are so bad they cannot be eaten.” 4 Then the word of the Lord came to me: 5 “This is what the Lord, the God of Israel, says: ‘Like these good figs, I regard as good the exiles from Judah, whom I sent away from this place to the land of the Babylonians. 6 My eyes will watch over them for their good, and I will bring them back to this land. I will build them up and not tear them down; I will plant them and not uproot them. 7 I will give them a heart to know me, that I am the Lord. They will be my people, and I will be their God, for they will return to me with all their heart. 8 “‘But like the bad figs, which are so bad they cannot be eaten,’ says the Lord, ‘so will I deal with Zedekiah king of Judah, his officials and the survivors from Jerusalem, whether they remain in this land or live in Egypt. 9 I will make them abhorrent and an offense to all the kingdoms of the earth, a reproach and a byword, a curse and an object of ridicule, wherever I banish them. 10 I will send the sword, famine and plague against them until they are destroyed from the land I gave to them and their ancestors.’” Let’s talk about this Bible verse not only as the state of the church in corona time – but also as believers in new seasons. In this story there are 3 groups of believers: The believer that refuses to move to the next season – Bad figs represented not only those against God but those that refused to follow the direction of God. The believer that moves to the new season but is waiting to get back to the old season The believer that moves to the new season and trusts Jesus So how do we develop faith like the believers that move into new seasons and trust Jesus? 1 – The Time to Build is Now People were exiled from their homes. They needed to build a new home. Don’t sit around waiting to get back to normal. This is your new normal. When we build, we work on our faith and our trust. God will build us up and will not tear us down. ****Doing life in the comments**** What is it that you need to build? What do you need to construct in your life? When we build inside of new seasons we become like a house vs a tent – there is… protection limitless power sewage / sanitation fresh water When we enter new seasons we need to build and not lament. 2 – It’s Time to Plant in New Seasons To set down roots in a new season. Roots represent a source of life. People did not leave when God told them to leave. They thought their source of life was connected to the routines and city they lived in rather than God. The soil determines the growth of the plant. The root pulls the nutrients from the soil and the plant grows. Jesus is the root, but your season determines your growth. Some of us are stuck in past seasons. All the nutrients have already been used. Jesus, the root, is telling us to move to the next season for new growth. We need to move to the next season – mentally, physically and faithfully. God’s desire is for us to connect to Jesus more that we connect to soil. Meaning – connect more to what Jesus is doing right now and right here; than what He did back then. Complaining and grumbling is failing to see Jesus in this season. Xerox Case Study: Xerox had the most successful single product of all time. They revolutionized businesses and homes. They had ground breaking research; but the people in charge decided it wasn’t for them and gave all the technology to Steve Jobs. Xerox had the future in its hands, but the ownership thought it was meant for someone else. Xerox is like a lot of believers… Reading the Bible and thinking it’s not for me its for someone else. Jesus is speaking – are you listening to grow? https://artgrid.io/clip/83735/paper-moving-through-rolls-on-printing-machine ***Like Xerox when we fail to listen, we fail to pivot*** When we fail to pivot into new seasons there are consequences. 3 core consequences from Jeremiah 24:10 as illustrations on this side of the cross and new covenant. Sword – When we fail to move into our next season we fight God, and we fight people that are living in the new seasons. We can become frustrated and angry with different viewpoints. Famine – We are starving for Jesus to speak to us in our past seasons, but He is speaking from your new season. So you refuse to consume new insights. Plague – Your mind becomes twisted and your heart is hardened towards the freshness of Jesus 2-Part Next Steps: Part 1 – Build 1 new routine. Part 2 – Leave 1 soil behind. Let go of 1 thing from a past season. Maybe it was a glory that was awesome but God is calling you to a new glory. Maybe it was something tragic, and you have been holding onto that pain.
41 minutes | 3 months ago
How is Faith Formed?
Have you ever seen an artist completely focused on their craft? Everything they do is intentional. Taking their time perfecting their art. They use their hands to shape exactly what is in their mind. This is our relationship to the Father. We are in His hands as He shapes and crafts us. He is intentionally focused on crafting us…we are His masterpiece. You are not a mistake. Your past has not disqualified you. You are the artwork of God. We are continuing our sermon series Faith Check – a series all about faith through the book of Jeremiah. Today’s message is “Forming Faith”. Jeremiah 18:1-4 The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord saying, 2 “Arise and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will announce My words to you.” 3 Then I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was, making something on the wheel. 4 But the vessel that he was making of clay was spoiled in the hand of the potter; so he remade it into another vessel, as it pleased the potter to make. Clay = you and me Potter = The Father The Wheel… is the tool used by the Father to shape us. Idol check – Do you talk to a person before talking to God? Do you count more on your work providing than God providing? Doing life in the comments – (Add a comment to engage with us) How do you stay Planted during the Process? with help from people? your word? Water is Jesus – not only used to shape us, and mold our lives. Dry lake bed – cracks are everywhere it is evident water used to be present. Now it’s dry and desolate. If your faith feels dry and things are falling apart or cracked, it’s evidence you need to reconnect your water source. https://artgrid.io/story/16162/Dry-Lake-Bed Kiln is the the Holy Spirit There are 2 firings for pottery: 1. The bisque fire is to remove impurities and make the pottery stable enough to receive glaze or adornment. 2. The final glaze fire is to cover the porous pottery with adornment and also prevent absorbing external influences. The Holy spirit likewise is transforming us from an impressionable vessel to sturdy enough to be adorned by the love of Jesus. then transforms us to seal us up from external influences that the enemy would love to distract us with. transforms us works out the impurities prepares us to be a complete vessel transforms us from temporary to long term – Sunday morning believer to daily disciple How do we keep our faith on Jesus in order to grow? The Yahoo Case Study Yahoo failed to grow because the cost was too high and the risk too great. They were number 1 in search and an online portal to the world – https://artgrid.io/story/16349/The-Writer Someone listening here is failing to grow – because the cost of discipleship is too high for you. The cost of serving is too high for you. The cost of reading the Bible is too high for you. The cost of genuine relationships is too high for you. The risk of losing reputation The risk of Jesus not showing up when you call on Him The risk of losing material possessions… a lot of people don’t tithe because their mind is on losing money instead of trusting Jesus. How do we use faith to stay planted on the potters wheel, when we get past the cost and risk: Jeremiah 18:15 ‘For My people have forgotten Me, They burn incense to worthless gods And they have stumbled from their ways, From the ancient paths, To walk in bypaths, Not on a highway, God is looking at His people and says His people have left the road for a path There was a difference between the ancient road and the bypath. – paved vs unpaved. STOP avoiding the cost and fearing the risk! In order to keep your faith on God through all the storms – like the pottery on the wheel in the hands of God….we need to hyper-focus on 2 things found in verse 15: “People have forgotten me” 1 – Know Jesus personally Pay the cost of time in reading and discerning. Pay the cost in pride of discipleship. Show up to our communion nights, be part of our Thursday Bible study. Start committing to the next steps we do weekly. Our church inspires and gives practical ways to deepen our faith. “burn incense to worthless gods” 2 – Worship Jesus always Worship is your heart towards Jesus. Pay the cost, time and energy to worship Jesus. – – worship with your heart. – sing – serve – do life together Your next step this week – Get Connected Connect to your word. Connect to someone you haven’t talked to since covid started. Serve. Sign up for Bible study Thursday night.
34 minutes | 4 months ago
How do you find faith?
Have you lost faith? Finding Faith – is the first installment of our new series “Faith Check”. This sermon series “Faith Check,” is a Holy Spirit lead deep look at FAITH through the book of Jeremiah. Have you ever seen an abandoned house? Yard overgrown, paint peeling, broken windows, dirt and neglect, just broken down? This is what our spirit looks like when we loose faith. Let’s be honest with ourselves and have a Faith Check. What state is your faith in? Jeremiah 13:1-11 13 Thus the Lord said to me, “Go and buy yourself a linen waistband and put it around your waist, but do not put it in water.” 2 So I bought the waistband in accordance with the word of the Lord and put it around my waist. 3 Then the word of the Lord came to me a second time, saying, 4 “Take the waistband that you have bought, which is around your waist, and arise, go to the Euphrates and hide it there in a crevice of the rock.” 5 So I went and hid it by the Euphrates, as the Lord had commanded me. 6 After many days the Lord said to me, “Arise, go to the Euphrates and take from there the waistband which I commanded you to hide there.” 7 Then I went to the Euphrates and dug, and I took the waistband from the place where I had hidden it; and lo, the waistband was ruined, it was totally worthless. Jeremiah represents Jesus Belt represents Humanity Euphrates represents behind enemy lines. What is FAITH? – Hebrews 11:1 says, “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” James 2:26 says, “For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.” If we are the belt, then the buckle is faith. It must be firmly engaged and attached to Jesus. Are you able to keep your faith up while behind enemy lines or do you fail? Blockbuster Case Study – They were in the movie rental business. The truth is we value movies and entertainment more than ever today, but blockbuster failed. Why? – Because they dug deep into their routine. – The world changed and they didn’t move forward or adapt. Do you have a blockbuster faith right now? Is your faith failing because your not moving forward? Are you waiting for the world to return to what it used to be? It didn’t work out for blockbuster and it wont work out for you. The Inheritance Factor – What faith inheritance are you passing on? Jesus is moving forward, are you clinging onto Him or hiding in the rocks waiting on things to return? Doing life in the comments – *** What are ways you are moving forward in your faith? *** Gods precisely explains why His people have failed to move forward in their faith in verses 8-11. Let’s look at this and then do the opposite. Jeremiah 13:8-11 8 Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying, 9 “Thus says the Lord, ‘Just so will I destroy the pride of Judah and the great pride of Jerusalem. 10 This wicked people, who refuse to listen to My words, who walk in the stubbornness of their hearts and have gone after other gods to serve them and to bow down to them, let them be just like this waistband which is totally worthless. 11 For as the waistband clings to the waist of a man, so I made the whole household of Israel and the whole household of Judah cling to Me,’ declares the Lord, ‘that they might be for Me a people, for renown, for praise and for glory; but they did not listen.’ How do we find faith to fully connect to Jesus? …refused to listen to My words 1 – Listen to the His Words Are you reading the Bible to check your list or to check your heart? Listening to the Word is different than reading the Word. …walk in the stubbornness of their hearts…they were taking steps to further their hard hearts 2 – Take Godly next steps Are you taking next steps to your faith or to your comfort? …have gone after other gods to serve them and to bow down to them 3 – Relationship with Jesus The entire story of the belt shows the Fathers heart. “I want you to be connected to Me.” Are you working on your relationship with Jesus all the time? Is something distracting you? Your Next Step – Today is the day to let go of old ways and hold onto Jesus. Let go of thinking worship isn’t worship without a church building; you are missing out on your weapon that is worship if you refuse to adapt. Let go of thinking church isn’t church without Sunday morning; you are missing out on growth if you refuse to adapt. What do you need to let go of so you can hold onto Jesus?
50 minutes | 4 months ago
Can I let you in on a secret? Hope wins! Every time. This is the last in our Can’t Cancel Hope series. I knew before we started this series the last thing to be spoken was Jesus in the tomb. In fact, one of the core images in my mind of this series was the picture of Jesus in the tomb; isolated and separated from His friends and people He loved. Waiting to be set free. Luke 24:1-8: On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: ‘The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’ ” Then they remembered his words. “Why do you look for the living among the dead?” One of the most powerful statements. Why do you look for hope in dead things? Hope wins because hope is Jesus. You ever watch a movie for the first time with someone who already seen that movie? Sitting around spoiling every moment. Ohh this is the best part… Jesus spoiled the end of the story to the disciples, just like… Jesus spoils the ending of your story, if you listen. “Spoiler alert, I love you, see you in heaven. Hope wins.” – Jesus Jesus is our Hope. He knows the plans he has for us. He is telling his plans for you all the time through the Holy Spirit and the Word. Hope is confident expectation – Jesus was confidently expecting to raise from the dead. Hope gets you through. Hope guides you. Hope delivers you… Hope wins What are some of the things that Jesus went through before He rose? Hope wins through: Betrayal – Judas and Peter. When those you love let you down. Attacked – Whipped and beaten – When life hits you over and over, wears on you. Suffocation – cross – When you can’t breathe under the pressure of life, or people, you feel like the life is slowing draining out of you. Isolation – in cave/tomb – When you are cut off from people you love. Doing life in the comments – What do you need Hope Winning through? doubt, fear, frustrations, anger… Hope Always Wins… …the only time hope fails is when hope is discarded before results. What do we need to learn so we don’t throw hope away? Especially when we are that close to breakthrough? 1 Timothy 1:1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ, by the commandment of God our Savior and the Lord Jesus Christ, our hope,… 1 – Live in Your Shoes The first thing Paul says is his name. It’s who he is. If you try and be someone else you will constantly be let down. You are trying to obtain something that doesn’t belong to you. And Jesus is too good to let you have something that doesn’t belong to you. 2 – Live in His Authority An apostle of Jesus – apostle means “sent one” – Paul was sent by Jesus. He was not acting on his own will but the will of Jesus. Granting the full authority of Jesus over his actions. When we start living in the authority of Jesus we gain clear direction and lose unclear wandering. 3 – Live in Your New Life God is the author of your life. He gave you a new life, will you live in it?? Where you came from does not cancel where you are going. Stop dropping Hope because of your past. Accepting Jesus as savior gave you a new life. Remember what the angel said at the tomb – Why do you look for the living among the dead? Look for Hope in Jesus Your next step this week – Pick up dropped Hope. Because Hope wins. Maybe you dropped hope in an area. Maybe you know someone who dropped hope. _______________________________________________________________________________________ CHECK THIS OUT! Our new sermon series starts next week – “Faith Check” We spent time on Hope. Now we are diving into faith. We will be hyper-focusing in the book of Jeremiah throughout this series. I want to encourage you to do 2 things: 1st – Get a new journal to write everything the Holy Spirit will speak to you through the entire series. 2nd – Invite someone to watch or listen to a message in the upcoming sermon series. Share a video with them, start a watch party and tag them. Tag them in a comment. Start praying now for who that will be.
49 minutes | 4 months ago
Hope is in Session
Do you remember high school math? There was always that one teacher that was super passionate about math even 1 week before summer vacation. Every other teacher had the AV kids roll in that old tv strapped down to the cart to watch a movie; but here you are in math with a teacher pouring their heart out on variables, fractals, and quadratic polynomials. Growing up in Oregon – late afternoon blue skies were a treasure. Skip math? We continue our “Can’t Cancel Hope” series with today’s message – HOPE is in Session. We’ve been looking at people in the Bible experiencing tests and dark situations of isolation, despair, hiding, lost, and lonely; and how they found Hope. Follow along: School is in session – conducting classes. What are you learning when life happens? We are jumping into the book of Job today to look at 3 different sessions. Oppression Recession Depression Ultimately the enemy wants to steal, kill, and destroy. – according to John 10:10 The enemy uses tactics to try and get you to misplace your Hope. You can’t cancel Hope. You can’t kill Jesus. So the enemy uses tactics to get us to place our Hope on anything but Jesus. 1 – Hope is in Oppression Job 1:6-12 6 One day the angels came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan also came with them. 7 The Lord said to Satan, “Where have you come from?” Satan answered the Lord, “From roaming throughout the earth, going back and forth on it.” 8 Then the Lord said to Satan, “Have you considered my servant Job? There is no one on earth like him; he is blameless and upright, a man who fears God and shuns evil.” 9 “Does Job fear God for nothing?” Satan replied. 10 “Have you not put a hedge around him and his household and everything he has? You have blessed the work of his hands, so that his flocks and herds are spread throughout the land. 11 But now stretch out your hand and strike everything he has, and he will surely curse you to your face.” 12 The Lord said to Satan, “Very well, then, everything he has is in your power, but on the man himself do not lay a finger.” Then Satan went out from the presence of the Lord. Does Job fear God for nothing? Is Job’s Hope tied to the blessings or the blesser. Satan has this theory – if bad things happen to good people; then good people will lose their Hope in God. He ultimately wants us to accuse God of the bad things. Satan has a 3 step program for you loosing Hope: Move hope from God to stuff Wait for stuff to fail Get you to accuse God for stuff failing Hope is in oppression by placing our Hope correctly. Too many people don’t learn the lessons found in life. Things get tough, they blame God. 2 – Hope is in Recession Job 1:20-22 20 At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship 21 and said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.” 22 In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing. Recession is a significant decline in the economy. I want to look at Job’s response in complete recession. He lost his family, his wealth, his everything. It is not wrong to grieve from loss. It is healthy to grieve. It is wrong to accuse God of your loss. Satan wishes that you would blame God too. Job didn’t blame God here. He tore his Robe and shaved his head and worshiped God. You can’t control what you loose; but you can control your response. Robe, hair and worship were all very public expressions. When we are grieving it is ok to be public about it. Don’t think you need to hide how you feel. Job was public about his grieving….. but he was public about his worship too. His robe and his hair were symbols of ethnicity, background, wealth, tribe, land owner, successful businessman. He tore his robes and cut his hair to show his identity was grieving; but his posture was worship. Hope is found in recession when we worship. ***Pause here to join us in the chat or comments and do life together:*** What are different ways you worship God? 3 – Hope is in Depression Job 1:20-22 20 At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship 21 and said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart. The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.” 22 In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing. Finding hope in depression is first rising up out of your emotions, your mind, and your state. …then he fell to the ground in worship. Hope is in depression through our position to Jesus Hope is found in oppression, recession and depression. If something still feels off something is miss-aligned. God questions Job. …..then Job replies. Job 40:2 “Will you discredit my justice and condemn me just to prove you are right? Job 42:5-6 5 My ears had heard of you but now my eyes have seen you. 6 Therefore I despise myself and repent in dust and ashes.” NEXT STEPS THIS WEEK: Find something to repent to Jesus about. Maybe it’s misplacing your hope on stuff, maybe it’s a lack of worship, or maybe it’s failing to position yourself at the feet of Jesus.
43 minutes | 5 months ago
Hope is 6ft Away
Have you ever felt so alone it weighs on you? Where you’re longing for an answer that seems forever away or impossible? Not actually talking about coranvirus and the ongoing stay at home orders. I’m actually talking about leprosy. Lepers were required to stand 6ft away and wear cloth face masks. Crazy similarity to today, right? We are continuing our “Can’t Cancel Hope” looking at people in the Bible experiencing their own isolation, dark, hidden, places holding on for the HOPE that is Jesus. Today, we’re in Matthew 8… a message that places our biggest breakthrough from a million miles off to just 6ft away. Matthew 8:1-4 When Jesus came down from the mountainside, large crowds followed him. 2 A man with leprosy came and knelt before him and said, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.”3 Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!” Immediately he was cleansed of his leprosy. What closes the gap of our breakthrough? Matthew 7:7-8 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened. How do you get closer to breakthrough? 1) Receive – you gotta listen to receive. word > precedes > breakthrough 2) Positioned – you must position yourself at the foot of the throne. The reason we fail is not believing. The reason why people secretly lack faith is from bad positioning… The leper calls Jesus Lord. Lord – meaning: owner, person I belong to…. Jesus had disciples. He had a church services. But up to this point people called him teacher, rabbi…. why do you think Jesus asked the question later on who do people call me? Who do you call me? Many people follow Jesus and have not positioned Him as Lord. Is Jesus your teacher? Or is He your Lord that teaches? **Join the discussion down below in the comments** Discussion question today is – How can you personally position Jesus as Lord this week? The leper called Him Lord publicly, bowed at his feet and worshipped Him before any healing ever happened. 3) Motivated – Why was he motivated? He wanted to rejoin community, he wanted to do life together…. Jesus reached out his hand and touched him. 2 perspectives. 1st – Leper that needed a breakthrough. 2nd – Jesus who showed the man His love. For some of us we are in the shoes of the leper needing breakthrough. For some of us we need to realize that we need to be the shoes of Jesus. There is a 3rd perspective – the crowd that stayed on the sidelines. They watched but did nothing. !!Our church does life together and takes the next steps.!! Jesus healed 3 people after Church. Leprosy – those that society rejects. Centurion servant – those that we hate Peters mother-in-law – those we love Jesus demonstrated His love through healing. YOUR NEXT STEP: This week is to demonstrate the love of Jesus to someone. Someone that bothers you, someone you hate, or someone you love. But most importantly it needs to be someone who doesn’t live with you.
57 minutes | 5 months ago
Hope Through Temptation
How do you keep hope alive for the best, when it’s been so long you’re tempted to settle? Have you ever been hungry? Standing in-front of an open fridge again and again? Checking the pantry over and over… Nothing looks good enough. The first few times you leave empty handed. But eventually…The hungrier you get…. the more you’re willing to settle for. We’re continuing our “Can’t Cancel Hope” series today with the Man Himself – Jesus. In the scripture today the devil tests Jesus 3 different ways. Each test is actually an exchange. I want you to look at what the devil is trying to exchange. Because what the devil tries to exchange with Jesus, is what he tries to exchange with us too. It’s Independence weekend. Let’s find freedom through temptations in our life. Follow along with Pastor Matt here: Matthew 4:1-11 4 1-3 Next Jesus was taken into the wild by the Spirit for the Test. The Devil was ready to give it. Jesus prepared for the Test by fasting forty days and forty nights. That left him, of course, in a state of extreme hunger, which the Devil took advantage of in the first test: “Since you are God’s Son, speak the word that will turn these stones into loaves of bread.” 4 Jesus answered by quoting Deuteronomy: “It takes more than bread to stay alive. It takes a steady stream of words from God’s mouth.” Jesus is starving. Jesus is hungry. The devil tries to force Jesus to transform the stone to bread. 1. The first exchange is what we consume, or take into our life. Because you have not consumed and fed on the Word of God in weeks, months, years…you are willing to settle in your life. You settle by turning the stone into bread. The devil tries to get us to exchange what we consume. A stone represents anything that tries to replace or distract you from the Word of God. If you genuinely look at your calendar and your bank statement you will instantly see what stones you are exchanging. The Bible declares that hope is Jesus. But the Bible also explains that the Word was with God at the beginning of creation, and that Jesus is the Word. So when we consume the Word, we develop our relationship with Jesus; and when we develop our relationship with Jesus – HOPE grows in our life. The devil wants to remove hope by preventing your relationship with Jesus. Location is important – Matthew 4:1 describes the Spirit as leading Jesus to the wild or wilderness. Greek definition is – solitary, lonely, desolate, uninhabited In your loneliness is where the devil tests you the most. Before moving forward in the sermon I want you to grab your phone or device right now and head over to the comments. Whether you are watching live or later… We are going to pause the sermon and do life together. I’m going to give a question and I want you to leave a comment and also engage in other peoples comments down below. “What is a stone in your life?” Matthew 4:1-11 5 Then the devil took him to the holy city, Jerusalem, to the highest point of the Temple, 6 and said, “If you are the Son of God, jump off! For the Scriptures say, ‘He will order his angels to protect you. And they will hold you up with their hands so you won’t even hurt your foot on a stone.’” 7 Jesus responded, “The Scriptures also say, ‘You must not test the Lord your God.’” The devil tries to get Jesus to jump off a high place to see the angels catch Him. 2. The second exchange, Jesus references testing God. The devil tries to exchange faith for thoughts, the devil wants to steal your faith and exchange it with thoughts. 1st exchange was what we allow into our life 2nd exchange is what we think… Any thoughts that questions your relationship with God. There are people who have been struggling with their faith, because they allowed the devil to exchange their thoughts for their faith. Did anyone catch the first word the devil says to Jesus in this test…. IF… you are the Son of God… This was an attempt to cause insecurity, doubt in WHO He was. The moment the devil begins whispering doubt in your ear is the moment he is scared of you. He is trying everything to exchange your faith with doubt. How do you reclaim your faith? You stop testing the insecurities the devil whispers in your ear. You read the Word to know who you are and Whose you are. The lack of Bible in your life is connected to your lack of confidence. Your insecurities and doubts are hard to overcome when you don’t have the Word. Matthew 4:1-11 8-9 For the third test, the Devil took him to the peak of a huge mountain. He gestured expansively, pointing out all the earth’s kingdoms, how glorious they all were. Then he said, “They’re yours—lock, stock, and barrel. Just go down on your knees and worship me, and they’re yours.” 10 Jesus’ refusal was curt: “Beat it, Satan!” He backed his rebuke with a third quotation from Deuteronomy: “Worship the Lord your God, and only him. Serve him with absolute single-heartedness.” 11 The Test was over. The Devil left. And in his place, angels! Angels came and took care of Jesus’ needs. The devil tries to get Jesus to bow down and worship him.. first exchange was what we allow into our life second exchange was what we think 3. The third exchange is what we worship Worship is serving. The devil is after who or what we serve. The devil exchanges serving God with serving anything or anyone else. This test is about worship…Serving God is our worship. This is the scariest point because some people don’t realize that the devil has swapped God with something else. The devil will spend more time convincing you to dedicate your life to anything but Jesus. The devil will try and convince you, that if you simply dedicate your actions to someone or something, all the doors will open and everything will be good. God says it so plainly… “do not allow your heart to be divided.” Every day your actions are for God. Sunday is not the only day for Worship. This test is where most believers fail Monday through Saturday. When your relationship with Jesus only moves forward on Sunday, it is evident the devil has split your heart; and convinced you that the busy-ness of life is first priority over God. I want you to have Hope through temptation. Your next step TODAY is make Jesus a priority in your life. If you would truly make Jesus a priority in your life: – the Word of God would not be exchanged for anything. – your faith would not be exchanged for your thoughts. – and your worship would be undivided
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