John Lloyd - Authentic Christianity Pt. 4

Authentic Christianity

Practical Wisdom from the Book of James

“True Religion" James 1:26-27

October 15, 2017

Pastor John Lloyd

 

Passage: James 1:26-27

Questions to contemplate:  What is true religion?  Is it the type of worship songs or hymns we sing?  Is it high church with liturgy, and prayers?  Is it a casual atmosphere where everybody is accepted?  Is it church attendance?  Is it that my family is religious? 

Today, we will look at James 1 and see what the Word of God defines as “True Religion.” The definition may surprise you.

Big Idea: True religion impacts our words, actions and the direction of our lives.

I.               True religion displays surrendered words.

James 1:26a If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart

James 1:26 “If you claim to be religious but don’t control your tongue, you are fooling yourself, and your religion is worthless.” (New living translation)

Psalm 34:13 Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking deceit.  (Proverbs 18:2)

Key thought:  One area not surrendered can neutralize the impact of our lives. 

Areas to surrender:

1.   Vulgarity-  Colossians 3:8, Prov.4:24

2.   Angry outbursts- Proverbs 29:11)

3.   Lying- Ephesians 4:25

4.   Gossip- Proverbs 11:13, 16:28, 26:20

5.   Slander- Titus 3:2

6.   Complainers- I Corinthians 10:10, Philippians 2:14

“If the heart is right, the speech will be right.”  Wiersbe

Matthew 12:34 You brood of vipers! How can you speak good, when you are evil? For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.

What we say is a barometer of where our hearts are at with God.

Remember God is looking for progress not perfection.

II.             True religion leads to surrendered service. 

James 1:27 Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.

 In their affliction- in their burden, trouble, tribulation

John 16:33 I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”

2 Corinthians 1:4 who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.  (Psalm 23:4, James 1:27a)

Definition:  Helping those in distress.

Visit- to go to see, relieve, look out.  (Matthew 25:36)

Isaiah 58:10 if you pour yourself out for the hungry and satisfy the desire of the afflicted, then shall your light rise in the darkness and your gloom be as the noonday.     

Is 58:11 And the LORD will guide you continually  and satisfy your desire in scorched places  and make your bones strong; and you shall be like a watered garden, like a spring of water,  whose waters do not fail. (58:12)

"Good and evil both increase at compound interest. That is why the little decisions you and I make every day are of such infinite importance. The smallest good act today is the capture of a strategic point from which, a few months later, you may be able to go on to victories you never dreamed of." C.S. Lewis

Psalm 68:5 Father of the fatherless and protector of widows is God in his holy habitation.  (John 21:18)

Hebrews 13:3 Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body.

Reflective Question:  Who has God put in my life that He wants me to help?  How are you serving them?

Surrendered service glorifies God and bears much fruit!

III.             True religion leads to surrendering our standards to God’s Word.

James 1:27b and to keep oneself unstained from the world.

The world’s standards are always trying to creep into our lives.

The World’s standards are often based on:

1.   Society     2.  Friends/Peers        3.  Self Interest

The key to godly standards is not isolation but reprogramming.

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. 

John 17:15 I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one. (Matthew 6:10)

Galatians 2:20 I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

 “Live like Jesus is in the room with you!”

Reprogramming our standards glorifies God and bears much fruit.

Surrender it all to Jesus!

Commitment Prayer:  Dear Jesus, I recognize that I must have you in total control of my life.  I surrender my words, my service and my standards to you.  I want to want what you want for me to be and do in my life.  I give you permission to work in these areas.  Help me grow to be more like you in each area.  Please receive my life as an act of worship to you!

John Lloyd - Authentic Christianity Pt. 3

Authentic Christianity

Building a Healthy SoulJames 1:19-25

October 8, 2017

Pastor John Lloyd

Passage: James 1:19-25

My prayer is that God will use the truths from this passage to help us develop a spiritually healthy soul in our walk with God and others.  

Big Idea: Our souls are the healthiest when we apply what we hear.  

I. Healthy believers ______________ well to God and others.

James 1:19 Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger;

“Beware of the dialogues of the deaf.”  Paul Tournier

“If we can’t listen well, we will be spiritually impoverished.”  

“Lord, speak to me!  You have sixty seconds.”   

Mark 4:24 And he said to them “Pay attention to what you hear:”

Luke 8:18 “Take care then how you hear,”  ( Mt. 13:13, Hebrews 5:11)

Some suggestions: 

1. Work at listening to others. Repeat what you hear them saying. 

2. Limit our exposure to visual media. 

3. Read God’s word. listen as we read. 

4. Slow down to listen. Pray I Samuel 3:10 “Speak for your servant is listening” 

5. Prepare your heart and soul to hear God’s word.  

II. Healthy believers ____________ words that edify God and others.

James 1:19 Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, 

Proverbs 13:3 Whoever guards his mouth preserves his life; he who opens wide his lips comes to ruin.  (Proverbs 15:1)

Proverbs 10:19 When words are many, transgression is not lacking, but whoever restrains his lips is prudent.  (Ecclesiastes 5:2)

Ephesians 4:29 Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.  (Philippians 4:8, I Thessalonians 5:11, Ephesians 4:15)

Questions to ask:  Are these words necessary, helpful, or healing?

III. Healthy believers allow the Holy Spirit to ________ their emotions.

James 1:19 Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger; 20 for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God.

“If you are not growing spiritually, one of these three things of James 1:19 is holding you up.”  Warren Wiersbe

Proverbs 16:32 Whoever is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city.

Proverbs 29:11 A fool gives full vent to his spirit, but a wise man quietly holds it back.

“An angry spirit is never a listening teachable spirit. When we feast on anger and bitterness—the feast is us.”  Kent Hughes

• All anger is not bad.

• Allow anger to be a signal that something is wrong.

• Justified or not, anger is never to control me.

• I become a slave to the person who causes my anger.  

A. Lay aside the ______________________ of our fallen hearts.

James 1:21a “Therefore put away all filthiness and rampant wickedness”

Romans 13:12b So then let us cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light.  (Hebrews 12:1, Zechariah 3:1, 3:5)

Mark 4:19 but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful.

B. Receive without reservation the ____________ of God.

James 1:21b and receive with meekness the implanted word, which is able to save your souls.

John 15:3 Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you.  (Psalm 25:9, Mark 4:20, Acts 17:11)

“Speak, your servant is listening!”  I Samuel 3:10

I. Healthy believers ______________ what they hear.

James 1:22 But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.

“Too many people mark their bibles, but their bibles never mark them.” 

Warren Wiersbe

James 1:23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. 24For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like.

“To hear and not take action is worthless. To hear and not take action is to lie to oneself.”  

James 1:25 But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.

“Looks”- more than a casual glance, looks carefully and closely Jn.20:5

Prayer:  Lord, help me to have a soul absorbing study of your Word.

“Satan portrays sin as the greatest freedom and God’s Word as the greatest bondage, but just the reverse is true.”  Roger Ellsworth

James 1:25b “being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing.”  John 13:17

Blessed is not just being happy, but it is being fulfilled, whole & healthy! 

We were made by God and for God.  Doesn’t it make sense that we can only find fulfillment in God? And living for God?  

Our souls are the healthiest when we apply what we hear.

Evan Rogers - The Cost of Christ

I. The older we get the more we begin to understand about the Bible

(Acts 5:1-11)

A. Why did they die for something so common as a lie?

Genesis 22:1 After these things God tested Abraham and said to him, “Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” 2 He said, “Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love, and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I shall tell you.” 

B. Why did God ask Abraham to sacrifice the son he had just received?

Matthew 9:18 While he was saying these things to them, behold, a ruler came in and knelt before him, saying, “My daughter has just died, but come and lay your hand on her, and she will live.

II. Our Values Change as we grow with Christ
A. We begin to see God’s heart and understand his point of view

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.

III. We need to value the Sacrifice of Christ

He left heaven

John 6:38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do my own will but the will of him who sent me.

He humbled himself and became Human

Philippians 2:8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.

Jesus became less than an angel

Hebrews 2:9 But we see him who for a little while was made lower than the angels, namely Jesus, crowned with glory and honor because of the suffering of death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.

He Served and obeyed His creation

John 2:3 When the wine ran out, the mother of Jesus said to him, “They have no wine.”4 And Jesus said to her, “Woman, what does this have to do with me? My hour has not yet come.” 5 His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”

Ridiculed by the people he came to save, including his own family

Mark 3:21 And when his family heard it, they went out to seize him, for they were saying, “He is out of his mind.”

Luke 23:11 And Herod with his soldiers treated him with contempt and mocked him. Then, arraying him in splendid clothing, he sent him back to Pilate.

He was Beaten

John 19:1 Then Pilate took Jesus and flogged him. 2 And the soldiers twisted together a crown of thorns and put it on his head and arrayed him in a purple robe. 3 They came up to him, saying, “Hail, King of the Jews!” and struck him with their hands.

He was Crucified

Matthew 27:35 The soldiers nailed Jesus to a cross.

Forsaken by God

Matthew 27:46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” that is, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”

Made to be sin itself

 2 Corinthians 5:21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

Spent 3 days in the grave

Mark 8:31 And he began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again.

Mark 10:45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.

IV. God Paid for our eternal Life

Romans 5:10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.

Titus 2:14 Who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.

V. We must Die with Christ

John 15:12 “This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.

Luke 14:26 “If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple. 27 And whoever does not carry their cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.

Romans 6:6 knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin.

2 Corinthians 4:11 For we who live are constantly being delivered over to death for Jesus' sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh.

Galatians 2:20 "I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.

Galatians 6:7 Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.

VI. God paid for your whole life

Acts 5:1-11 Ananias and Sapphira

Matthew 12:50 "For whoever does the will of My Father who is in heaven, he is My brother and sister.

John 14:15 “If you love me, you will keep my commandments.

1 John 2:17 The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God lives forever.

VII. Count the Cost of Christ

Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple. 28 For which of you, desiring to build a tower, does not first sit down and count the cost, whether he has enough to complete it?  Otherwise, when he has laid a foundation and is not able to finish, all who see it begin to mock him, 30 saying, ‘This man began to build and was not able to finish.’ 31 Or what king, going out to encounter another king in war, will not sit down first and deliberate whether he is able with ten thousand to meet him who comes against him with twenty thousand? 32 And if not, while the other is yet a great way off, he sends a delegation and asks for terms of peace. 33 So therefore, any one of you who does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple.

Luke 6:35 But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil.

John Lloyd - 140th Anniversary

Authentic Christianity

Celebrating 140 Years of God’s Faithfulness to Dolores Park Church

San Francisco, California
September 24, 2017

Big Idea: God has been faithful. God is faithful. God will be faithful.

God’s best is yet to come!
Why is it important for us to remember our history?
I. Remembering our past is declaring God has been faithful.
Psalm 145:1 I will extol you, my God and King, and bless your name forever and ever. 2
Every day I will bless you and praise your name forever and ever.  3 Great is the LORD,
and greatly to be praised, and his greatness is unsearchable.
 Remember the greatness of our Lord and His power.
“Have you not known? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the
Creator of the ends of the earth.  He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is
unsearchable,” (Isaiah 40:28). (Psalm 48:1, 147:5)
“LORD, you establish peace for us; all that we have accomplished you have done for
us.” (Isaiah 26:12 NIV).
Psalm 145:6 They shall speak of the might of your awesome deeds, and I will declare
your greatness. We are declaring the greatness of our God.
 Remember the great works and miracles God has done for us.
“Remember the wondrous works that he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he
uttered” (Psalm 105:5).
“Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy; then they
said among the nations, “The LORD has done great things for them.”  3 The LORD has
done great things for us; we are glad” (Psalm 126:2-3).
God has been faithful!

II. Real remembrance leads us to make commitments.
Psalm 145:4 One generation shall commend your works to another, and shall declare
your mighty acts.  5 On the glorious splendor of your majesty, and on your wondrous
works, I will meditate.  6 They shall speak of the might of your awesome deeds, and I
will declare your greatness.
Psalm 119:15 I will meditate on your precepts and fix my eyes on your ways. We desire
to fix our eyes on the ways of God.

God is and will be faithful!
A. Commit to the centrality of the Word of God.
“Where is it written?” P.P. Waldenstrom
Jesus said, “It is written, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that
comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4).
“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for
correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be complete,
equipped for every good work” (2 Timothy 3:16-17). (John 6:63, Proverbs 8:11, Ps.
119:11 & 105)
B. Commit to the necessity of the New Birth.
John 3:3 Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he
cannot see the kingdom of God.”
“As an evangelical church we believe that conversion results in eternal life. Conversion
can be defined as the act by which a person turns with repentance and faith from sin to
God. Conversion involves a conscious rejection of the life of sin and involves a
commitment of faith. Eternal life is not given through assent to creeds alone but through
a personal commitment to Jesus Christ” (Living Faith p.34). (Matthew 16:26, Acts 4:12,
Psalm 126:5-6)
C. Commit to the Mission of Jesus Christ.
Matthew 28:19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the
name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe
all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the
age.” Luke 24:47
Acts 1:8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you
will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the
earth.”
Ephesians 4:11 And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the
shepherds and teachers, 12 to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up
the body of Christ,
2 Timothy 2:2 and what you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses
entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.
D. Commit to the church as being a Fellowship of Believers.
The value of being a ‘Friend’ is embedded in our church family. A friend would ask the
question, “How goes your walk?” They understood the Christian life to be a lifelong
pilgrim journey. Their life grew together into mature discipleship and service. They

inquired about each other’s physical and spiritual wellbeing because they had become
friends in Christ. This is a call to not only believe, but to belong. (Living Faith p.97)
Jesus states, “Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his
friends. “You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15 No longer do I call you
servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you
friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you,” (John
15:14-15)
“Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.” Romans 12:15.
E. Commit to consciously depending upon the Holy Spirit.
“This is the word of the LORD to Zerubbabel: Not by might, nor by power, but by my
Spirit, says the LORD of hosts,” (Zechariah 4:6)
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever, (Hebrews 13:8).
“And I told them of the hand of my God that had been upon me for good, and also of
the words that the king had spoken to me. And they said, “Let us rise up and build.” So
they strengthened their hands for the good work,” (Nehemiah 2:18).
F. Commit to the reality of the Freedom in Christ.
John 8:31 So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you abide in my word,
you are truly my disciples, 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
Deuteronomy 6:6 And these words that I command you today shall be on your heart. 7
You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in
your house, and when you walk by the way, and when you lie down, and when you rise.
8 You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between
your eyes. 9 You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
Isaiah 26:12 LORD, you establish peace for us; all that we have accomplished you have
done for us. (New International Version)
“But, as it is written, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man
imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him”— (I Corinthians 2:9).
“Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think,
according to the power at work within us, 21to him be glory in the church and in Christ
Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen” (Ephesians 3:20-21).

God has been faithful! God is faithful! God will be faithful!

God’s best is yet to come!

 

John Lloyd - Authentic Christianity Pt. 2

Authentic Christianity

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Practical Wisdom from the Book of James
Dealing with Temptation and Sin James 1:9-18

Pastor John Lloyd
September 17, 2017

How do we navigate through the trial of temptation and sin?

“to have no bad habit devastating you”

Trial and Temptations? What’s the difference? God tests, Satan tempts.
Big Idea: God will give you wisdom to navigate through the trial of
temptation and sin. God is greater than my temptations and trials.
Wisdom of God from James:
I. A wise view of possessions and economics.
James 1:9 Let the lowly brother boast in his exaltation, 10and the rich in his
humiliation, because like a flower of the grass  he will pass away. 11For the sun
rises with its scorching heat and withers the grass; its flower falls, and its beauty
perishes. So also will the rich man fade away in the midst of his pursuits.
Luke 12:15 And he said to them, “Take care, and be on your guard against all
covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of his
possessions.”
Matthew 16:26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and
forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?
James 1:12 Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he
has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to
those who love him.

Following Jesus through trials will be worth it!

II. A wise view of ourselves.
James 1:13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for
God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one.
A. We should not blame God for our temptations and sins.
“Let no one say when he is tempted” (1:13),

Genesis 3:12 The man said, “The woman whom you gave to be with me, she
gave me fruit of the tree, and I ate.”

Matthew 4:1 Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be
tempted by the devil.
I Peter 1:16 since it is written, “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”
Luke 4:12 And Jesus answered him, “It is said, ‘You shall not put the Lord your
God to the test.’”
B. Sin is resident inside of us.
Mark 7:18 And he said to them, “Then are you also without understanding? Do
you not see that whatever goes into a person from outside cannot defile him,
Mark 7:20 And he said, “What comes out of a person is what defiles him. 21For
from within, out of the heart of man, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft,
murder, adultery, 22 coveting, wickedness, deceit, sensuality, envy, slander,
pride, foolishness. 23 All these evil things come from within, and they defile a
person.” (Romans 7:23, I John 1:8)
I do not believe that people take the doctrine of human depravity serious enough.
They do not recognize that we are not wrestling against flesh and blood but
against principalities and powers. We truly have an enemy, and unfortunately
the source of stimulation lies within us.
C. The source of this testing is our own evil desires. “yeser ha-ra” ;
James 1:14 But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own
desire
I Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man.
If I do not have a right view of myself, then I will tend to blame anything or
anyone for my sins and failures!

God’s power, love and grace is greater than our sins.
III. A wise view of sin.
James 1:14 But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own
desire. 15 Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is
fully grown brings forth death.

Understand the process:
Step one: It starts with a strong look.
(see Matthew 5:28, “But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman
lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”) (Gen. 3:6)
Step two: It builds into evil desires. (James 1:14) The imagery here is very rich.
It is a hunting & fishing metaphor, very violent in fact. The bait is used to draw
and lure the prey into the trap. Where the prey is suddenly and violently
captured. ( 2 Tim.3:6)
Step three: These desires give birth to sin. (James 1:15)
Step four: Sin always produces death and deception. (James 1:15)
(Romans 6:23; Genesis 2:17). Don’t be deceived…James 1:16
SOME SUGGESTIONS: 1. Own it 2. Starve it (Col.3:5, Rom. 13:14,
Galatians 5:16) 3. Replace it. Feed the Spirit (Gal. 5:16) personal bible study,
small group, prayer, serving and accountability
If I do not understand the process of sin, I will be a slave to it and mastered by it.

God’s power, love and grace is greater than my sins.
IV. A wise view of God.
James 1:16 Do not be deceived, my beloved brothers. 17Every good gift and
every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom
there is no variation or shadow due to change. 18 Of his own will he brought us
forth by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.
(See Hebrews 13:8; Isaiah 55:11, I Peter 2:23)
1. Recognize our tendency to leave out or even blame God. (1:13)
2. Believe that Jesus has broken the power of Sin. (Romans 6;14)
3. Receive the new birth through Jesus and embrace His word of Truth.
(James 1:18)

I Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man.
God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the
temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to
endure it

God is greater than my temptations and trials!

 

John Lloyd - Authentic Christianity Pt. 1

Authentic Christianity

Authentic Christianity
Staying Power James 1:1-- 8
Pastor John Lloyd
September 10, 2017

My prayer and goals for this study are that we would:
1. grow closer to God.
2. reveal Jesus in our lives.
3. build stronger Christian community by obeying His Word.
4. learn our Bibles better.


Introducing James:
Who? Half brother of Jesus (John 7:5; Acts 1:14)
What? Leader of the church in Jerusalem (Acts 12:17,15:13; 21:18;
Gal. 1:19)                                                                                                                                                       Why? The congregation was scattered by persecution.
Acts 7:54,8:1


Issues James was dealing with:
1. Divisiveness
2. Intolerance
3. Favoritism
4. Overpowering desire for wealth and status.


I. We need a different attitude toward our problems.


James 1:2 Count it all joy, my brothers,] when you meet trials of various kinds, My brothers- this term is used 15 times in the book. Each time it is used, James is getting ready to teach us something that will help have authentic faith. (See question 3)


Trials of various kinds-Suggest an unwelcome and unanticipated experience. The idea here is that they are unexpected and at least initially unwelcome. (Luke 10:30)

I Peter 4:12 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery trial when it comes upon you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you. 13 But rejoice insofar as you share Christ’s
sufferings, that you may also rejoice and be glad when his glory is
revealed.

1. Trials are not always a Bad Thing. (See John 9:2-3)
2. Trials develop Staying Power. James 1:3, Romans 5:3
3. Trials produce Maturity and Stability. James 1:4

Our culture is bent on eliminating any type of discomfort.
Let’s choose to grow in our trials. Rejoice instead of complain!
II. We need a different response to our problems.

James 1:4 And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be
perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.


Ephesians 4:13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith and of the
knowledge of the Son of God, to mature manhood, to the measure of
the stature of the fullness of Christ,


The Gospels present maturity as the imitation of God and the
development within of His character traits so that, through the Holy
Spirit, we become persons of integrity and single minded in our
devotion to God.


How to develop this character: Stay instead of Run.


Luke 6:36 Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.(Heb. 12:2)
Commitment: Let’s not compromise our morals or values when
attempting to remove hardship or heartache.


III. We need to pray for wisdom instead of deliverance.


James 1:5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives
generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.

James 1: 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who
doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven


I need wisdom to see my trials from God’s point of view!


Matthew 7:7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find;
knock, and it will be opened to you.


There is a connection between wisdom as a gift and asking for it.


James 1:7 For that person must not suppose that he will receive
anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all
his ways.


The people James was writing to were experiencing adversity, but
James sees it as cause for joy because he discerns that God’s
purpose is purification. If they endure their trials with patience, they
will be both purified and approved.


Commitment Prayer: Lord, I need staying power for my
relationships, job, school and ministry. Help me look to you for
wisdom and strength to not squirm out of my responsibilities and your
plan to develop maturity and stability. Jesus, I turn my life and
situations over to You again this day!

Spiritual Growth Questions for James 1:1-8 “Staying Power”


1. As you look back on the “good old days” in your life, were they
more likely to be the hard times or the easy times?


2. *Read James 1:1-8. In your own words, rewrite what you hear
James saying. Try to put it in a way you could share with a
friend.

3. Read James 1:2. Spend some time following James’ use of the
word “brothers” throughout the letter. Read James 1:16, 1:19,
2:1, 2:5, 2:14, 3:1, 3:10, 3:12, 4:11, 5:7,5:9, 5:10, 5:12 & 5:19.
How does his use of “brothers” help you understand this book?

4. *Study the following verses this week, James 1:2,3;
Ephesians 5:20; I Thessalonians 5:16-18; Philippians 4:4; I
Corinthians 10:1, 6, 10-11. As you meditate on these verses
look at the different attitude presented towards difficulties and
trials.


5. *What are some areas you have seen the value of staying
power in your life? (Read the following verses on the need for
staying power: Hebrews 6:11-12; Galatians 6:9; Acts 14:21-
22; 2 Timothy 2:3) What do these verses teach you about it?


6. *What is the natural human response to trials? What response
is James asking us to have towards our trials?


7. What causes you to doubt God? What misconceptions do you
have about God and trials in your life?


8. How has our “American Dream” thinking, with its standards of
success and joy, kept us from God’s wisdom?


9. *Concerning a trial you have experienced, what pressures did it
bring on your faith? What wisdom did you gain through it?


10. * Study the following verses and try and get your arms around
this concept of wisdom. What is wisdom? How do we receive
it? Job 28:28 ; Proverbs 4:7 ; Hosea 14:9 ; Matthew 7:24 ;
2 Timothy 3:15; James 1:5 ; Luke 21:15 ; Ecclesiastes 2:26.
As you navigate through a situation you’re facing,
we pray for God’s guidance, strength and wisdom.

John Lloyd - Our Identity in Christ Part 5

Our Identity in Christ Part 5

Our Identity in Christ Part Five
September 3, 2017
Pastor John Lloyd


A new identity in Christ creates liberation in our soul.
A new identity in Christ brings cleansing & holiness to our soul.
A new identity in Christ changes our loyalty and allegiances.
A new identity means God can bring metamorphosis.
A new identity brings us into a new relationship with God.
A new identity means our lives can be redeemed.
A new identity means we can have peace/rest in this world and the next.
A new identity means Jesus has exchanged our sin for his righteousness
Big Idea: The same Jesus who makes us right with God, heals our
broken souls. Help me to abide in Christ’s identity and abound in
His work.

I. A new identity in Christ means we are rightly related to God.
Romans 3:21 But now the righteousness of God has been manifested
apart from the law, although the Law and the Prophets bear witness to
it— 22the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who
believe. For there is no distinction.
Romans 3:23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24
and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in
Christ Jesus, 25 whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to
be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in
his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. 26I t was to show
his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the
justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

a. While guilty, we are declared righteous.

Romans 5:8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still
sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Since, therefore, we have now been justified
by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of
God.
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is
eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

b. Jesus exchanged our sin for his righteousness.

Romans 8:1 There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are
in Christ Jesus.  2For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ
Jesus from the law of sin and death. 3For God has done what the law,
weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the
likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh,
2 Corinthians 5:21 For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin,
so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
Consider the legal image of being declared righteous by the God who
made the universe.

c. We have been legally redeemed by God.

Titus 2:14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness
and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are
zealous for good works. ( I Peter 1:18-19)
Ephesians 1:7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the
forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace,
Jesus redeemed us to be His workers.
II. A new identity in Christ brings healing to my life.
Matthew 12:20 A bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick
he will not quench, until he brings justice to victory; 21 and in his name
the Gentiles will hope.”
 

a. Jesus heals our broken hearts.

Luke 4:18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because He has anointed
me to preach the gospel to the poor; He has sent me to heal the
brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives And recovery of sight
to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed;   to proclaim the
acceptable year of the Lord. (NKJV)
b. We were blind but not we see.

John 9:25b “One thing I do know, that though I was blind, now I see.”
Psalm 34:18 The LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves the
crushed in spirit. (Psalm 147:3)
Psalm 51:17 The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken and
contrite heart, O God, you will not despise. (Psalm 56:8)
Revelation 21:4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death
shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain
anymore, for the former things have passed away.” John 14:27, 16:33
John 19:30 When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, “It is
finished,” and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.
I John 1:9 I f we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our
sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (See question 4)

Jesus paid it all! Jesus offers a new identity
to anyone who humbly comes to Him!

III. Live in your identity in Christ.
Ephesians 4:1 I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a
manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called, 2with all
humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love,
Colossians 2:6 Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk
in him, (Matthew 5:16, John 9:25)
Our world desperately needs to see us walking in our identity in
Christ. Every person needs to find their identity in Christ and not
the things of this world.
I Corinthians 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast,
immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in
the Lord your labor is not in vain.

May we keep abiding in our identity in Christ
and abounding in His work this fall.

Spiritual Growth Questions

1. How is it going with your reading plan? Sun. 2 Corinthians 9 Mon.
2 Corinthians 10 Tues. 2 Cor.11, Wed. 2 Cor. 12 Thurs. 2 Cor. 13
Fri. & Sat. reflection. Pick out one verse that has ministered to you.
Share a truth you’ve been learning with a friend.
2. As you think of the tremendous floods in Texas, what
encouragement would you share with someone who has lost their
possessions and home?
3. Read Romans 5:1-2, 2 Corinthians 5:21. What does it mean to
be declared righteous? How does this truth connect with our
identity? Why is this image so important to our identity in Christ?
4. Read I John 3:20, 1:7-9, Ps. 139:23-24, 19:14. What should we
do when our feelings and thoughts are the exact opposite of our
identity in Christ? What do these verses teach us to do? Who is
responsible to do it? Read 2 Corinthians 10:5-6
5. Read 2 Chronicles 7:14, Proverbs 4:22, 12:18, 13:17, Acts
10:22. Read each verse and write down who or what brought
healing? Describe a time when you were healed?
6. Read Psalm 34:18, 51:17, 56:8. 147:3. Write down what God
promises to the brokenhearted? How does this help you face your
challenges this week?
7. Read 2 Corinthians 1:3-4. Make time to share the comfort of God
with someone this week. Spend some time praying for this person
and others who need God’s healing touch.
8. Ask God to give you ways to abound in the fruits of your identity
this fall. Ask Him to breath new vision into each of us.
John 9:25b “One thing I do know, that though I was blind, now I see.”

Next week: We will begin a new series called Authentic Christianity:
practical wisdom from the book of James.

John Lloyd - Our Identity in Christ Part 4

Our Identity in Christ Part 4

Our Identity in Christ Part Four
August 27, 2017
Pastor John Lloyd


A new identity in Christ creates liberation in our soul.
A new identity in Christ brings cleansing & holiness to our soul.
A new identity in Christ changes our loyalty and allegiances.
A new identity means God can bring metamorphosis.
A new identity brings us into a new relationship with God.
A new identity means our lives can be redeemed.
A new identity means we can have peace/rest in this world and the next.
2 Corinthians 1:4 I give thanks to my God always for you because of the
grace of God that was given you in Christ Jesus, 5that in every way you
were enriched in him in all speech and all knowledge.
I Cor. 13:12For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now
I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.
Big Idea: What I have received from God, I share with others.
What I have received in me, I humbly share with thee.

I. A new identity in Christ means we are redeemed!
Job 19:25 For I know that my Redeemer lives, and at the last he will
stand upon the earth. 2 Corinthians 5:17
Matthew 28:7 Then go quickly and tell his disciples that he has risen
from the dead, and behold, he is going before you to Galilee; there you
will see him. See, I have told you.”
“Religion makes us proud of what we have done, salvation makes us
proud of what God has done.” Timothy Keller
a. We were poor but now we are rich.
2 Corinthians 8:9 For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that
though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you by his
poverty might become rich.
b. While deserving the wages of death, we have been given the free
gift of life.

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is
eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (John 5:24)
John 5:24 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes
him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but
has passed from death to life.
c. Our debts are cancelled.
Matthew 6:12 and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our
debtors.
Luke 7:42 When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now
which of them will love him more?” 43Simon answered, “The one, I
suppose, for whom he cancelled the larger debt.” And he said to him,
“You have judged rightly.” (Luke 7:47)
d. We are heirs of God.
Galatians 4:7 So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then
an heir through God. (Romans 8:17, Eph. 1:18)
I Peter 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!
According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a
living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
(I Peter 1:4-5)

In the economics of souls, no one is beyond
the reach of God’s redeeming power.

II. Victory is a gift given to the redeemed.
2 Corinthians 2:14 But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us
in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the
knowledge of him everywhere.
I Corinthians 15:22 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be
made alive.

a. Jesus defeated the devil, principalities and powers, sin and
death! (I Corinthians 15:23-25)

I Corinthians 15:26 The last enemy to be destroyed is death.
Colossians 2:14 by canceling the record of debt that stood against us
with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross. 15He
disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by
triumphing over them in him. (Hebrews 2:14-15)

b. We share in Jesus victory and resurrection.

I Corinthians 15:54 When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and
the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is
written: “Death is swallowed up in victory.” 55 “O death, where is your
victory? O death, where is your sting?” (I Corinthians 15:57)
John 11:25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. 
Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, 26and
everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. Do you believe
this?”

c. We have eternal rest and peace.

Matthew 11:28 Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will
give you rest. (Hebrews 4:1-2)
Hebrews 4:9 So then, there remains a Sabbath rest for the people of
God,

d. We have the promise of heaven; a new creation living in the
presence of God forever.

Revelations 21:3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,
“Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them,
and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their
God. 4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be
no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore,
for the former things have passed away.”
I Corinthians 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast,
immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in
the Lord your labor is not in vain.

What I have received in me, I humbly share with thee!

Spiritual Growth Questions

1. How is it going with your reading plan? Sun. 2 Corinthians 4 Mon.
2 Corinthians 5 Tues. 2 Cor. 6, Wed. 2 Cor. 7 Thurs. 2 Cor. 8 Fri.
& Sat. reflection. Share a truth you’ve been learning with a friend.
2. What spoke to you as you experienced the eclipse this week?
Read Psalm 19:1-6 for some inspiration.
3. Look up the word “redeemed” in a dictionary and in a Bible
dictionary. Read the following verses and write down what is being
redeemed: Exodus 6:6, Ruth 3:13, 4:4, 2 Sam. 7:23, Psalm
69:18, 119:134, 130:8, Gal. 4:5, Tit. 2:14.
Discuss the examples of God’s power to redeem. What does this
teach you?
4. Read Luke 7:36-50. What is Jesus teaching the disciples? How
could this be applied to you? How could you apply this to others?
5. Read Romans 6:4-11. From this passage, list the areas in which
we’ve been given victory. Read again. Write down why we have
this victory. Is this an easy or difficult passage to believe? Why?
6. Read Hebrews 4:1-9, Matt. 11:28-30. Why do some people not
experience rest? What does Jesus teach us about rest? What
helps you to experience His rest?
7. Read I Corinthians 15:21-26, 51-57. Describe the victory given to
believers. Share what encourages you in this passage? Who can
I share this victory with this week? Who needs me to pray for them
to receive this victory in Jesus?
8. Read Revelation 21:1-4, I Cor. 15:58. How does the promise of
heaven help you face the struggles of this life? What response is
I Cor. 15:58 looking for in our lives? How can we live this out this
week?
John 16:33 I have said these things to you, that in me you may
have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I
have overcome the world.”
I Corinthians 15:58 So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and
immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know
that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless. (NLT)

Next week: We will look at healing images and legal images.
The following week, we will begin a new series called Authentic
Christianity: practical wisdom from the book of James.
What I have received from God, I humbly share with you!

Church Planting - John Brackett

#1 - What is the mission of the church?

I will surely bless you, and I will surely multiply your offspring as the stars of heaven and as the sand that is on the seashore. And your offspring shall possess the gate of his enemies, and in your offspring shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, because you have obeyed my voice.”

May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face to shine upon us, Selah 

that your way may be known on earth, your saving power among all nations. Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you! 

Let the nations be glad and sing for joy, for you judge the peoples with equity and guide the nations upon earth. Selah 

Let the peoples praise you, O God; let all the peoples praise you! The earth has yielded its increase; God, our God, shall bless us. 

God shall bless us; let all the ends of the earth fear him!

“Lord, now you are letting your servant depart in peace, according to your word; for my eyes have seen your salvation

that you have prepared in the presence of all peoples, a light for revelation to the Gentiles, and for glory to your people Israel.”

And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 

Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 

teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

And he said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.

Then he said to them, “These are my words that I spoke to you while I was still with you, that everything written about me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” 

Then he opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, 

and said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Christ should suffer and on the third day rise from the dead, 

and that repentance for the forgiveness of sins should be proclaimed in his name to all nations, beginning from Jerusalem. 

You are witnesses of these things. 

And behold, I am sending the promise of my Father upon you. But stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.”

Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.”

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”

Tim Keller, “God does not merely send the church in mission. God already is in mission, and the church must join him. This also means, then, that the church does not simply have a missions department; it should wholly exist to be a mission.”

Kevin DeYoung - “The mission of the church is to go into the world and make disciples by declaring the gospel of Jesus Christ in the power of the Spirit and gathering these disciples into churches, that they might worship the Lord and obey his commands now and in eternity to the glory of God the Father.”

#2 - Is the American Church fulfilling this mission?

#3 - Church planting is our best way to fulfill our mission

Main Point - The Church is God's chosen way to bring his kingdom into this world. And because that's true, we need to have a dedication to planting new churches.

Steve Timmis – “This is why ‘multiplying churches’ is so important. Multiplying churches is ‘God’s mission strategy’. Yes, evangelism is important. It is an integral part of our discipleship. Worship is important. It is a glorious expression of the gospel by which our affections are captured for Christ.

They are proper activities and priorities of the local church. But at some point in some way they should result in the establishment of new churches. We should be looking to plant new churches in diverse contexts so that the gospel word might produce more gospel fruit.”

Tim Chester - “Church planting is by definition a missionary activity, arguably the core missionary activity. Church planting puts mission at the heart of church and church at the heart of mission… This is the reason for church planting: to be a light to the nations at street level.”

Ed Stetzer – “Paul and other early Christians believed in and practiced church planting as a normal part of their lives—and specifically in response to the commands of Jesus. Planting new churches was not a novel or unique concept for zealous believers. Rather, church starting was the normal expression of New Testament missiology. 

Intentional church planting, under the guidance of the Holy Spirit, was the method of the early church. Church planting explains how the early church exploded across the Roman Empire during the decades following the resurrection of Jesus.”

Steve Timmis – “Church planting is not simply starting a new congregation. Church planting is not beginning a new meeting. Church planting is not opening up a new building. Church planting is the work of filling and subduing. It is the work of pushing back the thorns and thistles of Satan’s tyranny. It is a glorious task to which God has called us. God in the gospel is inviting us to participate with Him to fill the earth and subdue it. 

As we go out to make disciples of every nation we are extending Eden, creating Edens all over the world. We are establishing places where God rules and where God walks in mercy. It is for this that we were made. This is what the first Adam forfeited. This is what the Second Adam has gloriously secured. And this is how it has always been in the kingdom of God.”

 

Nehemiah 13, Finishing Well- John Lloyd

We apologize, there was a techincal difficulty this week with the audio recording. Thank for understanding.

Nehemiah 13:1

On that day they read from the Book of Moses in the hearing of the people. And in it was found written that no Ammonite or Moabite should ever enter the assembly of God, 2 for they did not meet the people of Israel with bread and water, but hired Balaam against them to curse them—yet our God turned the curse into a blessing. 3 As soon as the people heard the law, they separated from Israel all those of foreign descent.

4 Now before this, Eliashib the priest, who was appointed over the chambers of the house of our God, and who was related to Tobiah, 5 prepared for Tobiah a large chamber where they had previously put the grain offering, the frankincense, the vessels, and the tithes of grain, wine, and oil, which were given by commandment to the Levites, singers, and gatekeepers, and the contributions for the priests.6 While this was taking place, I was not in Jerusalem, for in the thirty-second year of Artaxerxes king of Babylon I went to the king. And after some time I asked leave of the king 7 and came to Jerusalem, and I then discovered the evil that Eliashib had done for Tobiah, preparing for him a chamber in the courts of the house of God. 8 And I was very angry, and I threw all the household furniture of Tobiah out of the chamber. 9 Then I gave orders, and they cleansed the chambers, and I brought back there the vessels of the house of God, with the grain offering and the frankincense.

10 I also found out that the portions of the Levites had not been given to them, so that the Levites and the singers, who did the work, had fled each to his field. 11 So I confronted the officials and said, “Why is the house of God forsaken?” And I gathered them together and set them in their stations. 12 Then all Judah brought the tithe of the grain, wine, and oil into the storehouses. 13 And I appointed as treasurers over the storehouses Shelemiah the priest, Zadok the scribe, and Pedaiah of the Levites, and as their assistant Hanan the son of Zaccur, son of Mattaniah, for they were considered reliable, and their duty was to distribute to their brothers. 14 Remember me, O my God, concerning this, and do not wipe out my good deeds that I have done for the house of my God and for his service.

15 In those days I saw in Judah people treading winepresses on the Sabbath, and bringing in heaps of grain and loading them on donkeys, and also wine, grapes, figs, and all kinds of loads, which they brought into Jerusalem on the Sabbath day. And I warned them on the day when they sold food. 16 Tyrians also, who lived in the city, brought in fish and all kinds of goods and sold them on the Sabbath to the people of Judah, in Jerusalem itself! 17 Then I confronted the nobles of Judah and said to them, “What is this evil thing that you are doing, profaning the Sabbath day? 18 Did not your fathers act in this way, and did not our God bring all this disaster on us and on this city? Now you are bringing more wrath on Israel by profaning the Sabbath.”

19 As soon as it began to grow dark at the gates of Jerusalem before the Sabbath, I commanded that the doors should be shut and gave orders that they should not be opened until after the Sabbath. And I stationed some of my servants at the gates, that no load might be brought in on the Sabbath day. 20 Then the merchants and sellers of all kinds of wares lodged outside Jerusalem once or twice. 21 But I warned them and said to them, “Why do you lodge outside the wall? If you do so again, I will lay hands on you.” From that time on they did not come on the Sabbath. 22 Then I commanded the Levites that they should purify themselves and come and guard the gates, to keep the Sabbath day holy. Remember this also in my favor, O my God, and spare me according to the greatness of your steadfast love.

23 In those days also I saw the Jews who had married women of Ashdod, Ammon, and Moab. 24 And half of their children spoke the language of Ashdod, and they could not speak the language of Judah, but only the language of each people.25 And I confronted them and cursed them and beat some of them and pulled out their hair. And I made them take an oath in the name of God, saying, “You shall not give your daughters to their sons, or take their daughters for your sons or for yourselves. 26 Did not Solomon king of Israel sin on account of such women? Among the many nations there was no king like him, and he was beloved by his God, and God made him king over all Israel. Nevertheless, foreign women made even him to sin. 27 Shall we then listen to you and do all this great evil and act treacherously against our God by marrying foreign women?”

28 And one of the sons of Jehoiada, the son of Eliashib the high priest, was the son-in-law of Sanballat the Horonite. Therefore I chased him from me.29 Remember them, O my God, because they have desecrated the priesthood and the covenant of the priesthood and the Levites.

30 Thus I cleansed them from everything foreign, and I established the duties of the priests and Levites, each in his work; 31 and I provided for the wood offering at appointed times, and for the firstfruits.

Remember me, O my God, for good.

John Lloyd - Our Identity in Christ Part 3

Our Identity in Christ Part 3

 

Building on Brokenness

Our Identity in Christ Part Three

July 30, 2017

Pastor John Lloyd

 

Continuing our study in Nehemiah, we follow a group of people deeply touched by God.  They lost their land, place of worship and, in many cases, separated from their families.  Returning to their homeland, they made deep commitments to God and each other to maintain their identity as His people.  By drawing near to God, we also can have a new identity through Jesus Christ.  It’s knowing, believing and living in sync with this identity that we truly grow to be more like our heavenly father. 

 

A new identity in Christ creates liberation in one’s soul.

A new identity in Christ brings cleansing and holiness to one’s soul.

A new identity in Christ changes our loyalty and allegiances.

A new identity means God can bring metamorphosis.

 

Colossians 2:6 Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, 7rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.

 

Big Idea: When Jesus is our identity, it changes how we live and what we give to others.  Our Who, changes our what!         

 

I.                A new identity changes my relationship to God and to others.

 

I John 3:1 See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 2 Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears] we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.  John 1:12

 

a.   We were enemies of God, now we’re reconciled and friends.

 

Romans 5:10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. 11 More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

 

2 Corinthians 5:18 All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; 19 that is, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. 20Therefore, we are ambassadors for Christ, God making his appeal through us. We implore you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God.

 

Colossians 1:20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross. 21And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, 22he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him,

 

Benevolence-desiring the good of the other person

Beneficence acting for the good of the other person

Concord- willing the good the other person wills

 

John 15:15 No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.

                 

b.   We are married to Christ.  We are His bride!

 

Revelation 21:2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

Revelation 21:9 saying, “Come, I will show you the Bride, the wife of the Lamb.”

 

Revelation 22:17The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.

 

c.    We have been offered a new covenant with God that binds us eternally to Him.

 

Mark 14:24 And he said to them, “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many. 25 Truly, I say to you, I will not drink again of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.”

 

Hebrews 8:6 But as it is, Christ has obtained a ministry that is as much more excellent than the old as the covenant he mediates is better, since it is enacted on better promises.  (Hebrews 8:10, 10:12)

 

d.   We have unlimited access to God.

 

Ephesians 2:17 And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near. 18For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. Ephesians 3:11-12, Romans 5:1-2

 

Hebrews 4:16 Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

 

II.              When I understand who I am in Christ, it changes what I do.

 

Ephesians 4:1 I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called,

 

Colossians 1:10 so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.  I Thessalonians 2:12

 

Philippians 1:27 Above all, you must live as citizens of heaven, conducting yourselves in a manner worthy of the Good News about Christ. Then, whether I come and see you again or only hear about you, I will know that you are standing together with one spirit and one purpose, fighting together for the faith, which is the Good News. (New Living)

 

John 1:16 For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace. 

 

John 17:8 For I have given them the words that you gave me, and they have received them and have come to know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me.

 

Matthew 10:8b “Give as freely as you have received!” New Living Translation

 

You can’t live what you haven’t received.  You can’t give what you haven’t received. 

 .

When Jesus is our identity, it changes how we live and what we give to others.  Our identity in Christ changes our behavior.

 

I have made a decision about my identity.

I am nothing but what God says I am:

I am a child of God. John 1:12.

I am free in my soul. John 8:32

I am cleansed. 1John 1:9

I am made holy in Christ. 2Cor. 5:21

I am a new creation. 2Cor. 5:17

I am a citizen of Heaven. Phil. 3:20

John LLoyd - Our Identity in Christ part 2

Our Identity in Christ part 2

 

Building on Brokenness

Our Identity in Christ Part Two

July 23, 2017

Pastor John Lloyd

 Continuing our study in Nehemiah, we follow a group of people deeply touched by God.  They lost their land, place of worship and, in many cases, separated from their families.  Returning to their homeland, they made deep commitments to God and each other to maintain their identity as His people.  By drawing near to God, we also can have a new identity through Jesus Christ.  It’s knowing, believing and living in sync with this identity that we truly grow to be more like our heavenly father. 

John 15:9 As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. 10If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. Col.3:1-3

Big Idea: It’s not about what we’ve done, but to whom we belong.  Our Who, changes our what. 

I.                A new identity means God can bring metamorphosis.

John 3:4 Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?

John 3:7 Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’

We have been born from above. 

We are a new creation. 2 Corinthians 5:17

We died to our old selves and have risen as new people. Rom. 6:4

We were lost but now we are found.  Luke 19:10

We were in the dark but now we are in the light (Colossians 1:12-13)

We were prisoners but now we are free

Luke 4:18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, 19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

John 3:8 The wind blows where it wishes, and you hear its sound, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.”  2 Peter 3:9, Genesis 18:14

Colossians 2:6 Therefore, as you received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in him, 7rooted and built up in him and established in the faith, just as you were taught, abounding in thanksgiving.

God can make anyone who comes to Him new!                               Our Who, changes our what. Is Jesus your who?

II.              A new identity changes my relationship to God and to others.

I John 3:1 See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him. 2 Beloved, we are God’s children now, and what we will be has not yet appeared; but we know that when he appears] we shall be like him, because we shall see him as he is.  John 1:12

a.   We were spiritual orphans but now we’re God’s children.

Galatians 4:5 to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons.

Romans 8:15 For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”  (Romans 8:16, Ephesians 1:5)

b.   We were enemies of God, now we’re reconciled and friends.

Romans 5:10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. 11 More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

2 Corinthians 5:18 All this is from God, who through Christ reconciled us to himself and gave us the ministry of reconciliation; (Colossians 1:20-22)

Benevolence-desiring the good of the other person

Beneficence acting for the good of the other person

Concord- willing the good the other person wills

John 15:15 No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.        

c.    We are married to Christ.  We are His bride!

Revelation 21:2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

Revelation 21:9 saying, “Come, I will show you the Bride, the wife of the Lamb.”

Revelation 22:17The Spirit and the Bride say, “Come.” And let the one who hears say, “Come.” And let the one who is thirsty come; let the one who desires take the water of life without price.

d.   We have been offered a new covenant with God that binds us eternally to God.

Mark 14:24 And he said to them, “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many. 25 Truly, I say to you, I will not drink again of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.”

Hebrews 8:6 But as it is, Christ has obtained a ministry that is as much more excellent than the old as the covenant he mediates is better, since it is enacted on better promises.

Hebrews 8:10 I will put my laws into their minds, and write them on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.

Hebrews 10:12 But when Christ had offered for all time a single sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand

Ephesians 2:17 And he came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near. 18For through him we both have access in one Spirit to the Father. Ephesians 3:11-12, Romans 5:1-2

Hebrews 4:16 Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

Now we have unlimited access to God.

Ephesians 4:1 I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called,

Our who changes our what.

Our identity in Christ changes our behavior.

 

 

John lloyd - Our Identity in Christ

Nehemiah 11

1 Now the leaders of the people lived in Jerusalem. And the rest of the people cast lots to bring one out of ten to live in Jerusalem the holy city, while nine out of ten remained in the other towns. 

2 And the people blessed all the men who willingly offered to live in Jerusalem.

3 These are the chiefs of the province who lived in Jerusalem; but in the towns of Judah everyone lived on his property in their towns: Israel, the priests, the Levites, the temple servants, and the descendants of Solomon's servants.

 4 And in Jerusalem lived certain of the sons of Judah and of the sons of Benjamin. Of the sons of Judah: Athaiah the son of Uzziah, son of Zechariah, son of Amariah, son of Shephatiah, son of Mahalalel, of the sons of Perez;

 5 and Maaseiah the son of Baruch, son of Col-hozeh, son of Hazaiah, son of Adaiah, son of Joiarib, son of Zechariah, son of the Shilonite.

 6 All the sons of Perez who lived in Jerusalem were 468 valiant men.

7 And these are the sons of Benjamin: Sallu the son of Meshullam, son of Joed, son of Pedaiah, son of Kolaiah, son of Maaseiah, son of Ithiel, son of Jeshaiah,

8 and his brothers, men of valor, 928. 

9 Joel the son of Zichri was their overseer; and Judah the son of Hassenuah was second over the city.

10 Of the priests: Jedaiah the son of Joiarib, Jachin, 

11 Seraiah the son of Hilkiah, son of Meshullam, son of Zadok, son of Meraioth, son of Ahitub, ruler of the house of God, 

12 and their brothers who did the work of the house, 822; and Adaiah the son of Jeroham, son of Pelaliah, son of Amzi, son of Zechariah, son of Pashhur, son of Malchijah, 

13 and his brothers, heads of fathers' houses, 242; and Amashsai, the son of Azarel, son of Ahzai, son of Meshillemoth, son of Immer,

14 and their brothers, mighty men of valor, 128; their overseer was Zabdiel the son of Haggedolim.

15 And of the Levites: Shemaiah the son of Hasshub, son of Azrikam, son of Hashabiah, son of Bunni; 

16 and Shabbethai and Jozabad, of the chiefs of the Levites, who were over the outside work of the house of God; 

17 and Mattaniah the son of Mica, son of Zabdi, son of Asaph, who was the leader of the praise, who gave thanks, and Bakbukiah, the second among his brothers; and Abda the son of Shammua, son of Galal, son of Jeduthun. 

18 All the Levites in the holy city were 284.

19 The gatekeepers, Akkub, Talmon and their brothers, who kept watch at the gates, were 172. 

20 And the rest of Israel, and of the priests and the Levites, were in all the towns of Judah, every one in his inheritance. 

21 But the temple servants lived on Ophel; and Ziha and Gishpa were over the temple servants.

22 The overseer of the Levites in Jerusalem was Uzzi the son of Bani, son of Hashabiah, son of Mattaniah, son of Mica, of the sons of Asaph, the singers, over the work of the house of God. 

23 For there was a command from the king concerning them, and a fixed provision for the singers, as every day required.

24 And Pethahiah the son of Meshezabel, of the sons of Zerah the son of Judah, was at the king's side in all matters concerning the people.

25 And as for the villages, with their fields, some of the people of Judah lived in Kiriath-arba and its villages, and in Dibon and its villages, and in Jekabzeel and its villages, 

26 and in Jeshua and in Moladah and Beth-pelet, 

27 in Hazar-shual, in Beersheba and its villages, 

28 in Ziklag, in Meconah and its villages, 

29 in En-rimmon, in Zorah, in Jarmuth, 

30 Zanoah, Adullam, and their villages, Lachish and its fields, and Azekah and its villages. So they encamped from Beersheba to the Valley of Hinnom. 

31 The people of Benjamin also lived from Geba onward, at Michmash, Aija, Bethel and its villages, 

32 Anathoth, Nob, Ananiah, 

33 Hazor, Ramah, Gittaim, 

34 Hadid, Zeboim, Neballat, 

35 Lod, and Ono, the valley of craftsmen. 

36 And certain divisions of the Levites in Judah were assigned to Benjamin.

Nehemiah 10 - John Lloyd

Nehemiah 10 (ESV)

1  “On the seals are the names of Nehemiah the governor, the son of Hacaliah, Zedekiah, 

2 Seraiah, Azariah, Jeremiah, 

3 Pashhur, Amariah, Malchijah,

4 Hattush, Shebaniah, Malluch, 

5 Harim, Meremoth, Obadiah,

 6 Daniel, Ginnethon, Baruch,

7 Meshullam, Abijah, Mijamin, 

8 Maaziah, Bilgai, Shemaiah; these are the priests.

9 And the Levites: Jeshua the son of Azaniah, Binnui of the sons of Henadad, Kadmiel; 

10 and their brothers, Shebaniah, Hodiah, Kelita, Pelaiah, Hanan, 

11 Mica, Rehob, Hashabiah, 

12 Zaccur, Sherebiah, Shebaniah, 

13 Hodiah, Bani, Beninu.

14 The chiefs of the people: Parosh, Pahath-moab, Elam, Zattu, Bani, 

15 Bunni, Azgad, Bebai, 

16 Adonijah, Bigvai, Adin, 

17 Ater, Hezekiah, Azzur, 

18 Hodiah, Hashum, Bezai, 

19 Hariph, Anathoth, Nebai, 

20 Magpiash, Meshullam, Hezir,

21 Meshezabel, Zadok, Jaddua, 

22 Pelatiah, Hanan, Anaiah, 

23 Hoshea, Hananiah, Hasshub, 

24 Hallohesh, Pilha, Shobek, 

25 Rehum, Hashabnah, Maaseiah, 

26 Ahiah, Hanan, Anan, 

27 Malluch, Harim, Baanah.

28 “The rest of the people, the priests, the Levites, the gatekeepers, the singers, the temple servants, and all who have separated themselves from the peoples of the lands to the Law of God, their wives, their sons, their daughters, all who have knowledge and understanding, 

29 join with their brothers, their nobles, and enter into a curse and an oath to walk in God's Law that was given by Moses the servant of God, and to observe and do all the commandments of the Lord our Lord and his rules and his statutes. 

30 We will not give our daughters to the peoples of the land or take their daughters for our sons. 

31 And if the peoples of the land bring in goods or any grain on the Sabbath day to sell, we will not buy from them on the Sabbath or on a holy day. And we will forego the crops of the seventh year and the exaction of every debt.

32 “We also take on ourselves the obligation to give yearly a third part of a shekelfor the service of the house of our God: 

 

33 for the showbread, the regular grain offering, the regular burnt offering, the Sabbaths, the new moons, the appointed feasts, the holy things, and the sin offerings to make atonement for Israel, and for all the work of the house of our God. 

34 We, the priests, the Levites, and the people, have likewise cast lots for the wood offering, to bring it into the house of our God, according to our fathers' houses, at times appointed, year by year, to burn on the altar of the Lord our God, as it is written in the Law. 

35 We obligate ourselves to bring the firstfruits of our ground and the firstfruits of all fruit of every tree, year by year, to the house of the Lord; 

36 also to bring to the house of our God, to the priests who minister in the house of our God, the firstborn of our sons and of our cattle, as it is written in the Law, and the firstborn of our herds and of our flocks; 

37 and to bring the first of our dough, and our contributions, the fruit of every tree, the wine and the oil, to the priests, to the chambers of the house of our God; and to bring to the Levites the tithes from our ground, for it is the Levites who collect the tithes in all our towns where we labor. 

38 And the priest, the son of Aaron, shall be with the Levites when the Levites receive the tithes. And the Levites shall bring up the tithe of the tithes to the house of our God, to the chambers of the storehouse. 

39 For the people of Israel and the sons of Levi shall bring the contribution of grain, wine, and oil to the chambers, where the vessels of the sanctuary are, as well as the priests who minister, and the gatekeepers and the singers. We will not neglect the house of our God.”

Nehemiah 9 - John Lloyd

 

Nehemiah 9

English Standard Version (ESV)

9 Now on the twenty-fourth day of this month the people of Israel were assembled with fasting and in sackcloth, and with earth on their heads. 

2 And the Israelites separated themselves from all foreigners and stood and confessed their sins and the iniquities of their fathers. 

3 And they stood up in their place and read from the Book of the Law of the Lord their God for a quarter of the day; for another quarter of it they made confession and worshiped the Lord their God. 

4 On the stairs of the Levites stood Jeshua, Bani, Kadmiel, Shebaniah, Bunni, Sherebiah, Bani, and Chenani; and they cried with a loud voice to the Lord their God.

 5 Then the Levites, Jeshua, Kadmiel, Bani, Hashabneiah, Sherebiah, Hodiah, Shebaniah, and Pethahiah, said, “Stand up and bless the Lord your God from everlasting to everlasting. Blessed be your glorious name, which is exalted above all blessing and praise.

6  “You are the Lord, you alone. You have made heaven, the heaven of heavens, with all their host, the earth and all that is on it, the seas and all that is in them; and you preserve all of them; and the host of heaven worships you. 

7 You are the Lord, the God who chose Abram and brought him out of Ur of the Chaldeans and gave him the name Abraham. 

8 You found his heart faithful before you, and made with him the covenant to give to his offspring the land of the Canaanite, the Hittite, the Amorite, the Perizzite, the Jebusite, and the Girgashite. And you have kept your promise, for you are righteous.

9 “And you saw the affliction of our fathers in Egypt and heard their cry at the Red Sea, 

10 and performed signs and wonders against Pharaoh and all his servants and all the people of his land, for you knew that they acted arrogantly against our fathers. And you made a name for yourself, as it is to this day. 

11 And you divided the sea before them, so that they went through the midst of the sea on dry land, and you cast their pursuers into the depths, as a stone into mighty waters. 

12 By a pillar of cloud you led them in the day, and by a pillar of fire in the night to light for them the way in which they should go. 

13 You came down on Mount Sinai and spoke with them from heaven and gave them right rules and true laws, good statutes and commandments,

 14 and you made known to them your holy Sabbath and commanded them commandments and statutes and a law by Moses your servant.

 15 You gave them bread from heaven for their hunger and brought water for them out of the rock for their thirst, and you told them to go in to possess the land that you had sworn to give them.

16 “But they and our fathers acted presumptuously and stiffened their neck and did not obey your commandments. 

17 They refused to obey and were not mindful of the wonders that you performed among them, but they stiffened their neck and appointed a leader to return to their slavery in Egypt. But you are a God ready to forgive, gracious and merciful, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love, and did not forsake them. 

18 Even when they had made for themselves a golden calf and said, ‘This is your God who brought you up out of Egypt,’ and had committed great blasphemies, 

19 you in your great mercies did not forsake them in the wilderness. The pillar of cloud to lead them in the way did not depart from them by day, nor the pillar of fire by night to light for them the way by which they should go.

20 You gave your good Spirit to instruct them and did not withhold your manna from their mouth and gave them water for their thirst. 

21 Forty years you sustained them in the wilderness, and they lacked nothing. Their clothes did not wear out and their feet did not swell.

22 “And you gave them kingdoms and peoples and allotted to them every corner. So they took possession of the land of Sihon king of Heshbon and the land of Og king of Bashan.

 23 You multiplied their children as the stars of heaven, and you brought them into the land that you had told their fathers to enter and possess.

24 So the descendants went in and possessed the land, and you subdued before them the inhabitants of the land, the Canaanites, and gave them into their hand, with their kings and the peoples of the land, that they might do with them as they would. 

25 And they captured fortified cities and a rich land, and took possession of houses full of all good things, cisterns already hewn, vineyards, olive orchards and fruit trees in abundance. So they ate and were filled and became fat and delighted themselves in your great goodness.

26 “Nevertheless, they were disobedient and rebelled against you and cast your law behind their back and killed your prophets, who had warned them in order to turn them back to you, and they committed great blasphemies. 

27 Therefore you gave them into the hand of their enemies, who made them suffer. And in the time of their suffering they cried out to you and you heard them from heaven, and according to your great mercies you gave them saviors who saved them from the hand of their enemies.

 28 But after they had rest they did evil again before you, and you abandoned them to the hand of their enemies, so that they had dominion over them. Yet when they turned and cried to you, you heard from heaven, and many times you delivered them according to your mercies.

 29 And you warned them in order to turn them back to your law. Yet they acted presumptuously and did not obey your commandments, but sinned against your rules, which if a person does them, he shall live by them, and they turned a stubborn shoulder and stiffened their neck and would not obey. 

30 Many years you bore with them and warned them by your Spirit through your prophets. Yet they would not give ear. Therefore you gave them into the hand of the peoples of the lands. 

31 Nevertheless, in your great mercies you did not make an end of them or forsake them, for you are a gracious and merciful God.

32 “Now, therefore, our God, the great, the mighty, and the awesome God, who keeps covenant and steadfast love, let not all the hardship seem little to you that has come upon us, upon our kings, our princes, our priests, our prophets, our fathers, and all your people, since the time of the kings of Assyria until this day.

33 Yet you have been righteous in all that has come upon us, for you have dealt faithfully and we have acted wickedly. 

34 Our kings, our princes, our priests, and our fathers have not kept your law or paid attention to your commandments and your warnings that you gave them.

 35 Even in their own kingdom, and amid your great goodness that you gave them, and in the large and rich land that you set before them, they did not serve you or turn from their wicked works. 

36 Behold, we are slaves this day; in the land that you gave to our fathers to enjoy its fruit and its good gifts, behold, we are slaves.

 37 And its rich yield goes to the kings whom you have set over us because of our sins. They rule over our bodies and over our livestock as they please, and we are in great distress.

38  “Because of all this we make a firm covenant in writing; on the sealed document are the names of our princes, our Levites, and our priests.

  

Nehemiah 8 - John Lloyd

 

Nehemiah 8

English Standard Version (ESV)

1 And all the people gathered as one man into the square before the Water Gate. And they told Ezra the scribe to bring the Book of the Law of Moses that the Lord had commanded Israel. 

2 So Ezra the priest brought the Law before the assembly, both men and women and all who could understand what they heard, on the first day of the seventh month. 

3 And he read from it facing the square before the Water Gate from early morning until midday, in the presence of the men and the women and those who could understand. And the ears of all the people were attentive to the Book of the Law. 

4 And Ezra the scribe stood on a wooden platform that they had made for the purpose. And beside him stood Mattithiah, Shema, Anaiah, Uriah, Hilkiah, and Maaseiah on his right hand, and Pedaiah, Mishael, Malchijah, Hashum, Hashbaddanah, Zechariah, and Meshullam on his left hand. 

5 And Ezra opened the book in the sight of all the people, for he was above all the people, and as he opened it all the people stood.

 6 And Ezra blessed the Lord, the great God, and all the people answered, “Amen, Amen,” lifting up their hands. And they bowed their heads and worshiped the Lord with their faces to the ground. 

7 Also Jeshua, Bani, Sherebiah, Jamin, Akkub, Shabbethai, Hodiah, Maaseiah, Kelita, Azariah, Jozabad, Hanan, Pelaiah, the Levites, helped the people to understand the Law, while the people remained in their places. 

8 They read from the book, from the Law of God, clearly, and they gave the sense, so that the people understood the reading.

9 And Nehemiah, who was the governor, and Ezra the priest and scribe, and the Levites who taught the people said to all the people, “This day is holy to the Lord your God; do not mourn or weep.” For all the people wept as they heard the words of the Law. 

10 Then he said to them, “Go your way. Eat the fat and drink sweet wine and send portions to anyone who has nothing ready, for this day is holy to our Lord. And do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.” 

11 So the Levites calmed all the people, saying, “Be quiet, for this day is holy; do not be grieved.” 

12 And all the people went their way to eat and drink and to send portions and to make great rejoicing, because they had understood the words that were declared to them.

13 On the second day the heads of fathers' houses of all the people, with the priests and the Levites, came together to Ezra the scribe in order to study the words of the Law. 

14 And they found it written in the Law that the Lord had commanded by Moses that the people of Israel should dwell in booths during the feast of the seventh month, 

15 and that they should proclaim it and publish it in all their towns and in Jerusalem, “Go out to the hills and bring branches of olive, wild olive, myrtle, palm, and other leafy trees to make booths, as it is written.” 

16 So the people went out and brought them and made booths for themselves, each on his roof, and in their courts and in the courts of the house of God, and in the square at the Water Gate and in the square at the Gate of Ephraim. 

17 And all the assembly of those who had returned from the captivity made booths and lived in the booths, for from the days of Jeshua the son of Nun to that day the people of Israel had not done so. And there was very great rejoicing. 

18 And day by day, from the first day to the last day, he read from the Book of the Law of God. They kept the feast seven days, and on the eighth day there was a solemn assembly, according to the rule.

  

Chris Babiak - Father's Day

Father's Day Sermon - Chris Babiak

Wise Father’s Build

Examining the Father of the Prodigal Son

We’re going to look at a well-known, traditional passage from a different angle. If you have attended church for a number of years, you have heard this passage preached on, and if you’ve been a Christian a long time, you’ve possibly heard dozens of sermons or read articles or books on the Prodigal Son. Today, we are going to look at the passage and focus on the father more than the sons. May it illuminate our understanding of God’s hope for us and inform our approach to our children and our lives. 

 Movement 1: Father Loses Son (Luke 15:11-19)

Psalm 145:8 - “The Lord is gracious and merciful; Slow to anger and great in lovingkindness.”

2 Peter 3:9 - “The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.”

Proverbs 3:11-12 - My son, do not reject the discipline of the Lord or loathe His reproof, for whom the Lord loves He reproves, even as a father corrects the son in whom he delights.

Proverbs 26:12 - Do you see a man wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him. (Prov. 12:15)

Psalm 119:9-12 - How can a young man keep his way pure?

By keeping it according to Your word. With all my heart I have sought You; do not let me wander from Your commandments. Your word I have treasured in my heart, that I may not sin against You. Blessed are You, O Lord; teach me Your statutes. (Josh. 1:8, 1 Timothy 3:16)

Proverbs 3:9-10 - Honor the Lord from your wealth and from the first of all your produce; So your barns will be filled with plenty and your vats will overflow with new wine. (Colossians 3:23-24, Eccl. 2:24)

Hebrews 13:5-6 - Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, “I will never desert you, nor will I ever forsake you,” so that we confidently say, “The Lord is my helper, I will not be afraid. What will man do to me?” (Matthew 19:21-24)

Psalm 127:1-2 - Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it; Unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman keeps awake in vain. It is vain for you to rise up early, to retire late, to eat the bread of painful labors; for He gives to His beloved even in his sleep. (Matthew 6:25-33)

Luke 15:13 - And not many days later, the younger son gathered everything together and went on a journey into a distant country, and there he squandered his estate with loose living.

Prov. 13:11 - Wealth obtained by fraud dwindles, but the one who gathers by labor increases it.

Eph 5:15-17 - Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil. So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.

Movement 2: Father Receives Lost Son (Luke 15:20-24)

Matthew 6:14-15 - “If you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions.” (Matthew 18:21-22, I John 1:9)

Ephesians 6:18 - With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints. (1 Thes. 5:17, Philippians 4:6-7)

1 Chronicles 16:8,11 - Oh give thanks to the Lord, call upon His name; make known His deeds among the peoples… Seek the Lord and His strength; seek His face continually. 

 Luke 15:22-24 - But the father said to his slaves, ‘Quickly bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet; and bring the fattened calf, kill it, and let us eat and celebrate; for this son of mine was dead and has come to life again; he was lost and has been found.’ (1 Thes. 5:16)
Jeremiah 32:41 - “I will rejoice over them to do them good and will faithfully plant them in this land with all My heart and with all My soul.”

Movement 3: Father Loses Son (Luke 15:25-34)

Jeremiah 31:3 - “I have loved you with an everlasting love; therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness.”

Romans 8:38-39 - For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Luke 15:32 - we had to celebrate and rejoice, for this brother of yours was dead and has begun to live, and was lost and has been found.

Proverbs 1:7-8 - The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge; fools despise wisdom and instruction. Hear, my son, your father’s instruction and do not forsake your mother’s teaching.

 

Nehemiah 7 - John Lloyd

 

1 Now when the wall had been built and I had set up the doors, and the gatekeepers, the singers, and the Levites had been appointed, 

2 I gave my brother Hanani and Hananiah the governor of the castle charge over Jerusalem, for he was a more faithful and God-fearing man than many. 

3 And I said to them, “Let not the gates of Jerusalem be opened until the sun is hot. And while they are still standing guard, let them shut and bar the doors. Appoint guards from among the inhabitants of Jerusalem, some at their guard posts and some in front of their own homes.” 

4 The city was wide and large, but the people within it were few, and no houses had been rebuilt.

Lists of Returned Exiles

5 Then my God put it into my heart to assemble the nobles and the officials and the people to be enrolled by genealogy. And I found the book of the genealogy of those who came up at the first, and I found written in it:

6 These were the people of the province who came up out of the captivity of those exiles whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried into exile. They returned to Jerusalem and Judah, each to his town. 

 7 They came with Zerubbabel, Jeshua, Nehemiah, Azariah, Raamiah, Nahamani, Mordecai, Bilshan, Mispereth, Bigvai, Nehum, Baanah.The number of the men of the people of Israel: 8 the sons of Parosh, 2,172. 9 The sons of Shephatiah, 372. 10 The sons of Arah, 652 11 The sons of Pahath-moab, namely the sons of Jeshua and Joab, 2,818. 12 The sons of Elam, 1,254. 13 The sons of Zattu, 845. 14 The sons of Zaccai, 760. 15 The sons of Binnui, 648. 16 The sons of Bebai, 628. 17 The sons of Azgad, 2,322. 18 The sons of Adonikam, 667. 19 The sons of Bigvai, 2,067. 20 The sons of Adin, 655. 21 The sons of Ater, namely of Hezekiah, 98. 22 The sons of Hashum, 328. 23 The sons of Bezai, 324. 24 The sons of Hariph, 112. 25 The sons of Gibeon, 95. 26 The men of Bethlehem and Netophah, 188. 27 The men of Anathoth, 128. 28 The men of Beth-azmaveth, 42. 29 The men of Kiriath-jearim, Chephirah, and Beeroth, 743. 30 The men of Ramah and Geba, 621. 31 The men of Michmas, 122. 32 The men of Bethel and Ai, 123. 33 The men of the other Nebo, 52. 34 The sons of the other Elam, 1,254. 35 The sons of Harim, 320. 36 The sons of Jericho, 345. 37 The sons of Lod, Hadid, and Ono, 721. 38 The sons of Senaah, 3,930.39 The priests: the sons of Jedaiah, namely the house of Jeshua, 973. 40 The sons of Immer, 1,052. 41 The sons of Pashhur, 1,247. 42 The sons of Harim, 1,017.43 The Levites: the sons of Jeshua, namely of Kadmiel of the sons of Hodevah, 74. 44 The singers: the sons of Asaph, 148. 45 The gatekeepers: the sons of Shallum, the sons of Ater, the sons of Talmon, the sons of Akkub, the sons of Hatita, the sons of Shobai, 138. 46 The temple servants: the sons of Ziha, the sons of Hasupha, the sons of Tabbaoth, 47 the sons of Keros, the sons of Sia, the sons of Padon, 48 the sons of Lebana, the sons of Hagaba, the sons of Shalmai, 49 the sons of Hanan, the sons of Giddel, the sons of Gahar, 50 the sons of Reaiah, the sons of Rezin, the sons of Nekoda, 51 the sons of Gazzam, the sons of Uzza, the sons of Paseah, 52 the sons of Besai, the sons of Meunim, the sons of Nephushesim, 53 the sons of Bakbuk, the sons of Hakupha, the sons of Harhur, 54 the sons of Bazlith, the sons of Mehida, the sons of Harsha, 55the sons of Barkos, the sons of Sisera, the sons of Temah, 56 the sons of Neziah, the sons of Hatipha.

57 The sons of Solomon’s servants: the sons of Sotai, the sons of Sophereth, the sons of Perida, 58 the sons of Jaala, the sons of Darkon, the sons of Giddel, 59 the sons of Shephatiah, the sons of Hattil, the sons of Pochereth-hazzebaim, the sons of Amon.

60 All the temple servants and the sons of Solomon’s servants were 392.

61 The following were those who came up from Tel-melah, Tel-harsha, Cherub, Addon, and Immer, but they could not prove their fathers’ houses nor their descent, whether they belonged to Israel: 62 the sons of Delaiah, the sons of Tobiah, the sons of Nekoda, 642. 63 Also, of the priests: the sons of Hobaiah, the sons of Hakkoz, the sons of Barzillai (who had taken a wife of the daughters of Barzillai the Gileadite and was called by their name).64 These sought their registration among those enrolled in the genealogies, but it was not found there, so they were excluded from the priesthood as unclean. 65 The governor told them that they were not to partake of the most holy food until a priest with Urim and Thummim should arise.

Totals of People and Gifts

66 The whole assembly together was 42,360, 67 besides their male and female servants, of whom there were 7,337. And they had 245 singers, male and female. 68 Their horses were 736, their mules 245, 69 their camels 435, and their donkeys 6,720.

70 Now some of the heads of fathers’ houses gave to the work. The governor gave to the treasury 1,000 darics of gold, 50 basins, 30 priests’ garments and 500 minas of silver. 71 And some of the heads of fathers’ houses gave into the treasury of the work 20,000 darics of gold and 2,200 minas of silver. 72 And what the rest of the people gave was 20,000 darics of gold, 2,000 minas of silver, and 67 priests’ garments.

73 So the priests, the Levites, the gatekeepers, the singers, some of the people, the temple servants, and all Israel, lived in their towns.

And when the seventh month had come, the people of Israel were in their towns.

  

Nehemiah 6 - John Lloyd

Nehemiah 6 (Esv)

1Now when Sanballat and Tobiah and Geshem the Arab and the rest of our enemies heard that I had built the wall and that there was no breach left in it (although up to that time I had not set up the doors in the gates), 

2 Sanballat and Geshem sent to me, saying, “Come and let us meet together at Hakkephirim in the plain of Ono.” But they intended to do me harm. 

3 And I sent messengers to them, saying, “I am doing a great work and I cannot come down. Why should the work stop while I leave it and come down to you?” 

4 And they sent to me four times in this way, and I answered them in the same manner. 

5 In the same way Sanballat for the fifth time sent his servant to me with an open letter in his hand. 

6 In it was written, “It is reported among the nations, and Geshem also says it, that you and the Jews intend to rebel; that is why you are building the wall. And according to these reports you wish to become their king. 

7 And you have also set up prophets to proclaim concerning you in Jerusalem, ‘There is a king in Judah.’ And now the king will hear of these reports. So now come and let us take counsel together.” 

8 Then I sent to him, saying, “No such things as you say have been done, for you are inventing them out of your own mind.” 

9 For they all wanted to frighten us, thinking, “Their hands will drop from the work, and it will not be done.” But now, O God, strengthen my hands.

10 Now when I went into the house of Shemaiah the son of Delaiah, son of Mehetabel, who was confined to his home, he said, “Let us meet together in the house of God, within the temple. Let us close the doors of the temple, for they are coming to kill you. They are coming to kill you by night.” 

11 But I said, “Should such a man as I run away? And what man such as I could go into the temple and live? I will not go in.” 

12 And I understood and saw that God had not sent him, but he had pronounced the prophecy against me because Tobiah and Sanballat had hired him. 

13 For this purpose he was hired, that I should be afraid and act in this way and sin, and so they could give me a bad name in order to taunt me. 

14 Remember Tobiah and Sanballat, O my God, according to these things that they did, and also the prophetess Noadiah and the rest of the prophets who wanted to make me afraid.

The Wall Is Finished

15 So the wall was finished on the twenty-fifth day of the month Elul, in fifty-two days. 

16 And when all our enemies heard of it, all the nations around us were afraid and fell greatly in their own esteem, for they perceived that this work had been accomplished with the help of our God. 

17 Moreover, in those days the nobles of Judah sent many letters to Tobiah, and Tobiah’s letters came to them. 

18 For many in Judah were bound by oath to him, because he was the son-in-law of Shecaniah the son of Arah: and his son Jehohanan had taken the daughter of Meshullam the son of Berechiah as his wife. 

19 Also they spoke of his good deeds in my presence and reported my words to him. And Tobiah sent letters to make me afraid.