This weekend, I will begin a two-part series on the importance of being connected to our church family. This is more than simply attending service and listening to the message. This is serving in a ministry, attending Sunday School, and joining a small group. The title of this series is “CONNECTION.”
This weekend, we will be looking at Jesus’ words to His disciples. He describes the cost of living a life of obedience to God and taking up their crosses to follow after Him. This parable caused the disciples to examine their hearts and determine if they were truly willing to forsake all others and follow Jesus. The title of this weekend’s message is “COST.”
Our plans may fail. Our plans may get disrupted. Our plans may have to be revised. But, God’s Gospel Plan does not fail, will not get disrupted, and it’s not open to revision. The Plan of Salvation is the only hope for every man, woman, boy, or girl. Today it can happen for you and change your life forever.Which plan are you trusting in for your salvation? Your Plan? The Church Plan? The Denomination Plan? The wrong plan of salvation will cost you your soul. Are you truly saved? Repent, Believe, and Follow Jesus Christ.
When it comes to our salvation, we have to count the cost. We have to ask ourselves, “What all am I willing to give up in order to be saved?” Please don’t misunderstand. Giving up doesn’t save us. Salvation from start to finish is the work of God. It’s only by grace through faith in the cross of Jesus and the empty tomb that we are saved. But, being willing to give up everything reveals whether or not we understand the gospel. It demonstrates how sincere and how committed we are to follow Christ our king.
This weekend, we turn our attention to the importance of prayer. Throughout Scripture, we see the emphasis on prayer and the privilege of talking to our Heavenly Father. Jesus, Paul, James, and many others in the New Testament talk about the importance of prayer, not only for ourselves but interceding on the behalf of others, too. The title of the message this weekend is “DISCIPLESHIP: INTERCESSION.”
This weekend, we are looking in the book of Galatians at Paul’s charge to restore someone caught in sin. As you heard in an earlier message, none of us can go through the process of discipleship alone. We need one another to help us stay focused and to bring us back to God when we lose our way. The title of this week’s message is “DISCIPLESHIP: RESTORATION.”
This weekend, we turn our attention to the importance of the Word of God being implanted in our hearts. When we memorize Scripture, we hide God’s Word in our hearts to keep us focused on Him when life tries to steal our attention. The implanted Word within us responds to the external Word when we sit under biblical teaching and preaching. Likewise, the external Word stirs the implanted Word within us and calls us to action. This weekend’s message is titled “DISCIPLESHIP: IMPLANTED.”
This weekend, we are taking a look at Paul’s words to Timothy regarding the importance of studying the Bible. He encourages Timothy to remind others to regularly study the Scriptures without falling into pointless debates that only create division. Proper study of the Word ensures that men and women have a firm foundation of truth. The message this weekend is titled “DISCIPLESHIP: ROOTED.”
This weekend’s message is critical to our understanding of discipleship. Having examined each of the facets of discipleship through our acronym WATER and the obstacles connected to each one, we turn out attention to how to practically implement these strategies into our lives. In Paul’s second letter to Timothy, he encourages the young pastor to put into practice the things he has learned and help others to grow spiritually. The title of our message this weekend is “DISCIPLESHIP: PATHWAYS.”
For the message this weekend, we will be returning to Jesus’ words in the Great Commission. Jesus ended by saying that He would be with His disciples until the end of the age. This promise comforted the disciples when they encountered obstacles in the process of discipleship. They were able to overcome because Christ was with them just as He is with us. The title of the message for this weekend is “DISCIPLESHIP: OVERCOMING OBSTACLES.”
This weekend, we come to the final letter in our acronym WATER, showing us what a true disciple looks like. In the Gospel of Luke, Jesus tells the Pharisees they should be less concerned with pointing out the shortcomings in others. Rather, they ought to get their own hearts right with God and lead others to do the same. Instead of tearing others down, they should be turning the minds and hearts of others to Christ. The title this weekend is “DISCIPLESHIP 5: REPRODUCING.”
This messages marks the fourth installment in our series. Throughout His earthly ministry, Jesus spent time teaching His disciples and those around Him the importance of the Old Testament and the prophecies that had been fulfilled. Disciples should be established on the truth of the Bible. The title of the message this weekend is “DISCIPLESHIP 4: ESTABLISHED IN THE WORD.”
This weekend, we come to the third letter of the acronym WATER, which stands for “Together.” In the book of Acts, the believers were united by a common purpose and desire to see the gospel spread to the nations. Their unity made them stand out from those around them and drew people to the truth of who Jesus is and what He accomplished. The title of this week’s message is “DISCIPLESHIP 3: TOGETHER.”
This weekend, we come to the second letter of the acronym WATER, which stands for “Accountable.” Throughout Scripture, we find disciples of God being grouped into pairs and going out to spread the gospel, establish churches, or visit those in need. Jesus encouraged His followers to rely on a close inner circle to keep themselves focused on pursuing God and a pure life. The title of this week’s message is “DISCIPLESHIP 2: ACCOUNTABLE.”
Last weekend, I introduced the acronym WATER to help us understand what being a disciple should look like. This weekend, we’ll be examining the first of those elements of being a disciple; the message is titled “DISCIPLESHIP 1: WITNESSES.” We’ll be taking a look at Acts and seeing how the disciples were to be witnesses to those around them.
Our message this weekend is titled “DISCIPLESHIP 1: WITNESSES.” We will begin looking at Matthew 28 and Jesus’ charge to His disciples to go into all the world and tell people the good news of salvation. They were to be the mouthpieces for the message of redemption.
This weekend, I’m preaching a message titled “DRIFTING ALLEGIANCE.” After His resurrection, Jesus still had many interactions with His disciples, teaching them and preparing them for when He would depart from them. The encounter we will be looking at is a tender moment between Jesus and Peter following his denial of Christ during the crucifixion. Jesus gently restores Peter’s focus and clarity on the mission God has given him.
In our series on the life of Christ we come to the passage where Jesus called Peter. We typically think of the passage where Peter and his brother Andrew were by the Sea of Galilee mending their nets and Jesus called them to follow Him. We picture them dropping their nets and following Him immediately. Many of us have heard wonderful messages on the need to follow Jesus immediately. Only problem – did you know that there are 4 different accounts of Jesus’ interaction with Peter?!!
The point is – it took 4 different callings (at least that many are actually recorded in the gospels) before Peter left all and followed Jesus. The message is that God is more gracious than we realize. He works with us and draws us to Himself, even when we keep turning back. We don’t deserve anything but His wrath. God is so compassionate and patient towards us. It’s time to turn to Him and follow Him.