Friday, January 31, 2014

It's a God Thing

"It's a God thing," many people will say when something unusual or unexpectedly good happens in their life. It is an attempt, sometimes sincere, to acknowledge that God has something or other to do with the events of our lives, especially when those events are beyond our knowledge or control. It may be a step up from "It's my lucky day."

But if my experience is any guide, the expression "It's a God thing" typically comes from the lips of those who have very little, if any, acquaintance with true God. The expression itself is perfectly ignorant, void of defining content, and capable of being filled with any "god" or "thing" that you wish. It is sometimes used to prevent any further inquiry into the subject, as if being a "god thing" means that it is beyond the realm of our knowledge and it wouldn't do any good to ask questions anyway.

But beyond this, the expression seems to be used in conjunction with a persistent belief that God's presence is manifested most clearly in unusual or unexpected events. If something really unusual happened, then God must be in it. The divine has just touched our lives personally. It gives us goosebumps just thinking about it. But more seriously, we begin to place a great deal of weight on these kinds of experiences, as if they gave us a true knowledge of God. We begin to feel that we must have a good relationship with God if we experience a number of these "god things."

There is just one small problem with these "god things." God never said that he would bring you to know him that way. It is true that throughout history God has done wonderful works, works that make us wonder in amazement. But these things have no power to bring us to the true knowledge of God, for they do not deal with what separates us from God.

In order to come to the joy of knowing the true God, you need to know him as he has revealed himself in Jesus Christ. The God-man Jesus, who actually,historically lived a sinless life, died as a substitute for sinners, and rose from the dead, is the bedrock for knowing the true God. Furthermore, the knowledge of Jesus comes to us through the writings of apostles who were eye-witnesses of his majesty. In short, you need the Bible if you are to have the full joy of having fellowship with the true God.

Forget your "god things," and rest in the Word of God. Join us this Lord's Day as we consider having fellowship with God through his Word.

Songs
O Father, Thou Whose Love Profound (29)
Psalm 119f
How Firm a Foundation (610)
The Name High Over All (31)

Scripture Reading
Old Testament: Numbers 15:21; Psalm 32
New Testament: John 2:13-25

Sermon
Knowing God through His Word - 1 John 1:1-4

Friday, January 24, 2014

Partnership in Eternal Life

The Holy Spirit gave us the first letter of John so that we would have partnership with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. There is a world of life and joy in that statement. We are going to savor it this Lord's Day. Join us as we come to know the eternal life we have, which is Jesus Christ.

Songs
Our Great Savior (434)
Psalm 15a
Psalm 23b
Be Thou My Vision (462)

Scripture Reading
Old Testament: Numbers 14:26-45; Psalm 23
New Testament: John 2:1-12

Sermon
Knowing You Have Eternal Life; Knowing You Have the True God - 1 John 1:1-4; 5:6-20

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Your Face, Lord, Do I Seek



O Lord my God, my one hope, listen to me lest out of weariness I should stop wanting to seek you, but let me seek your face always, and with ardor. Do you yourself give me the strength to seek, having caused yourself to be found and having given me the hope of finding you more and more….Let me remember you, let me understand you, let me love you. Increase these things in me until you refashion me entirely.
Augustine, The Trinity

Friday, January 17, 2014

Seeking Joy

In the Lord's wisdom, I was not able to preach last Lord's Day. (And many thanks to Jon for stepping in at the last minute.) Therefore, our text will be the same as I posted last week - 1 John 1:1-4. We look forward to meeting and hearing the Word of Life so that our joy may be complete in 2014 and forever.

Songs
All Creatures of Our God and King (59)
Tell Me the Story of Jesus (121)
Psalm 110A
Psalm 100

Scripture Reading
Old Testament: Numbers 14:1-25; Psalm 13
New Testament: John 1:35-51

Sermon
Proclaiming the Word of Life - 1 John 1:1-4

Friday, January 10, 2014

Proclaiming Eternal Life

Simple words. Deep truth. Stunning impact.That's the way I feel after wrestling with the first epistle of John this week. Pray that we will know the Word of life this Lord's Day as we meet. Pray that the proclamation of that which was from the beginning will lead us to fellowship with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ, so that our joy will reach its pure and high completion.

Songs
Holy, Holy, Holy (3)
Let Us Love (483)
Salvation! O My Soul Rejoice! (298)
Glory Be to God the Father (72)

Scripture Reading
Old Testament: Numbers 13:25-33; Psalm 9
New Testament: John 1:19-34

Sermon
Proclaiming the Word of Life - 1 John 1:1-4

Friday, January 03, 2014

The Good Life in 2014 and Beyond

At the beginning of a new year, promises of the good life are as thick as snowflakes in a blizzard. But when the sun beats on those promises, they melt away. It turns out that Apple, or Aristotle, or your boyfriend, or the Broncos, or Obamacare, or you-name-it, cannot give you the good life. It also turns out that the Lord told us a long time ago where to find the good life. It is a life he calls "blessed," and it is the life we will look for as we open the new year with a sermon from Psalm 1. Join us!

Songs
O for a Thousand Tongues to Sing (#69)
Rejoice! the Lord Is King (13)
Psalm 1
How Good Is the God We Adore (738)

Scripture Reading
Old Testament: Numbers 13:1-24; Psalm 1
New Testament: John 1:1-18

Sermon
Blessed - Psalm 1