Believe ACT - Spiritual Gifts - Pentecost Sunday

vs 4 - 5 - 6: There are a variety of gifts but the same Spirit and a variety of services but one Lord one master and many activities but one God empowering them all - Many different manifestations of the Holy Spirit, and ALL serve the purpose - the purpose of the King.  The Holy One.  He is the Spirit of Christ.  If it is not serving Christ it is not His Spirit!  If it is the power of man it is not God’s thing.

vs7 to each - the Holy Spirit will work through everybody - there is not one person through whom the Spirit will speak - He is speaking and working in and through the WHOLE BODY

vs 8 - 11 is a list but NOT an exhaustive list.  This is NOT the whole thing just a few examples

  1. Word of Wisdom - a supernatural gift of wisdom  - knowing WHAT to do and HOW to do it.  Also could be a specific skill given by the Spirit
  2. Word of Knowledge - a supernatural knowledge of something that a person could not have known any other way - a fact that comes to us not through the senses or human facility
  3. Faith - All faith is a gift.  Even the smallest grain of faith.  This could be just a higher level of faith or specific faith for a specific thing.  “If you have the faith of God” 
  4. Healing - specific instances of healing - literally A healing - we should not say the gift the gift of a healing
  5. Miracles - literally “acts of power” so good
  6. Prophecy - forth telling AND foretelling 
  7. Distinguishing between spirits - judgement of winds - there are lots of people who have different understandings of this.
  8. various kinds of tongues - 
  9. interpretation of tongues


Here are the other 16 gifts not listed in 1 Cor 12


  1. Helping (1 Cor. 12:28)
  2. Administration (1 Cor. 12:28; Acts 6:2-3)
  3. Ministry/service (Rom. 12:7; 2 Tim. 1:16-18)
  4. Teaching (Rom. 12:7; Eph. 4:11-14)
  5. Encouragement (Rom. 12:8; Heb. 10:24-25)
  6. Giving (Rom. 12:8; 1 Cor. 13:3; Acts 4:32-35)
  7. Leadership (Rom. 12:8; Acts 13:12)
  8. Mercy (Rom. 12:8; Luke 5:12-13)
  9. Apostleship (Eph. 4:11)
  10. Evangelism (Eph. 4:11; 2 Tim. 4:5)
  11. Pastoral guidance (Eph. 4:11)
  12. Grace (Rom. 12:6; Eph. 3:7; 4:7; 1 Pet. 4:10-11)
  13. Willingness to face martyrdom (1 Cor. 13:3)
  14. Intercession (Rom. 8:26-27)
  15. Hospitality (1 Pet. 4:9)
  16. Celibacy (1 Cor. 7:8)

It seems like some people receive a specific gift more often than others.  I think that is a function of faith.  People receive via faith and when we get to a cert


vs 11-12 - 

11But one and the same Spirit works all these things,distributing to each one individually just as He wills.

12For even as the body is one and [yet] has many members, and all the members of the body, though they are many, are one body, so also is Christ.

  • The variety of our gifts is an expression of our unity and a mechanism to draw us closer together
    • we need each other because nobody has all the gifts!
  • The variety of our gifts is an expression of God’s creativity and a mechanism to make us more reliant upon the Holy Spirit.
    • Each gift flows from our connection to the person of the Holy Spirit
    • Each gift is divided and granted via our connection to the person of the Holy Spirit
    • Each gift is given to the BODY through the individual!
      • these are not your gifts - you are the steward and carrier of these gifts that are meant to be given AWAY to others!


vs 13 - 

13For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whetherJews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit.

  • All of the disperateness that we had before we have been brought together here and given the Spirit to drink - one reality we partake of that give us the life of Christ


vs 14 - 26 - honoring and valuing

14For the body is not one member, but many. 15If the foot says, "Because I am not a hand, I am not [a part] of the body," it is not for this reason any the less [a part] of the body. 16And if the ear says, "Because I amnot an eye, I am not [a part] of the body," it is not for this reason any the less [a part] of the body. 17If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole were hearing, where would the sense of smell be? 18But now God has placed the members, each one of them, in the body, just as He desired.19If they were all one member, where would the body be? 20But now there are many members, but onebody. 21And the eye cannot say to the hand, "I have no need of you"; or again the head to the feet, "I haveno need of you." 22On the contrary, it is much truer that the members of the body which seem to be weakerare necessary; 23and those [members] of the body which we deem less honorable, on these we bestowmore abundant honor, and our less presentable members become much more presentable, 24whereas our more presentable members have no need [of it]. But God has [so] composed the body, giving more abundant honor to that [member] which lacked, 25so that there may be no division in the body, but [that] the members may have the same care for one another. 26And if one member suffers, all the members sufferwith it; if [one] member is honored, all the members rejoice with it.

  • Look around you - 
    • Each of these people is a precious gift TO YOU FROM GOD
    • Each one of these people carries a gift FROM GOD that is FOR YOU
    • you carry a gift from God for these people!
  • What gifts do YOU CARRY?
  • Are you giving them away?


The Power of a Praying Woman - Believe "Act" Prayer


The Power of a Praying Woman - Believe "Act" Prayer

Happy Mother’s Day!!

We are moving on to our second week of the Believe Series

We are going to talk about prayer - 

I feel like it is ordained of the Lord that we are talking about Prayer on Mother’s Day.  I have never known a more prayerful group of people than women.

Hannah - 

Samuel 1:5-18

 5but to Hannah he would give a doubleportion, for he loved Hannah, but the LORD had closed her womb. 6Her rival, however, would provoke her bitterly to irritate her, because the LORD had closed her womb. 7It happened year after year, as often as she went up to the house of the LORD, she would provoke her; so she wept and would not eat. 8Then Elkanah her husband said to her, "Hannah, why do you weep and why do you not eat and why is your heartsad? Am I not better to you than ten sons?"

9Then Hannah rose after eating and drinking in Shiloh. Now Eli the priestwas sitting on the seat by the doorpost of the temple of the LORD. 10She, greatly distressed, prayed to the LORD and wept bitterly. 11She made a vow and said, "O LORD of hosts, if You will indeed look on the affliction of Your maidservant and remember me, and not forget Your maidservant,but will give Your maidservant a son, then I will give him to the LORD allthe days of his life, and a razor shall never come on his head.” 12Now it came about, as she continued praying before the LORD, that Eliwas watching her mouth. 13As for Hannah, she was speaking in her heart, only her lips were moving, but her voice was not heard. So Elithought she was drunk. 14Then Eli said to her, "How long will you makeyourself drunk? Put away your wine from you." 15But Hannah replied,"No, my lord, I am a woman oppressed in spirit; I have drunk neither winenor strong drink, but I have poured out my soul before the LORD. 16"Do not consider your maidservant as a worthless woman, for I have spokenuntil now out of my great concern and provocation." 17Then Eli answeredand said, "Go in peace; and may the God of Israel grant your petition that you have asked of Him." 18She said, "Let your maidservant find favor in your sight." So the woman went her way and ate, and her face was nolonger [sad].

Why did the Lord deny children to this woman?

  1. We are often presented with circumstances that do not seem fair, that are painful to us, that we do not understand - we have a decision to make in those moments. 
  2. Are we going to let our circumstance inform us about our God or are we going to let our God inform us about our circumstance?
  • Hannah could have complained - look at the conversation she has with her husband - no complaining spirit there!
  • Hannah could have gotten bitter and angry - tried to take revenge on the other wife of her husband and gain something for herself in that way
  • Hannah could have turned from the Lord 


God was not punishing Hannah

God was not displeased with Hannah

There is nothing here of God saying - "if you only wanted it bad enough”, or “you’re gonna have to work for it"


  1. Theres something about desperation: it is a beautiful breeding ground for faith.  It changes our perspective.  We will try anything.  We will reach for impossibilities.  We will believe anything.
    • the Cyrophoneacian woman - Mark 7
    • the woman with the issue of blood - Mark 5
    • the man who’s son was throwing himself in the fire - Mark 9
    • the centurion - Luke 7
  2. God was letting hunger do it’s work in Hannah
    • God was waiting for Hannah to learn to trust Him.
    • God was inviting Hannah to believe for a higher destiny for her son -
    • God had a powerful calling in store for Hannah’s son and until she was aligned and surrendered to His will for Samuel it was not time for Samuel to come.
    • God was waiting for Hannah to be able to see the kind of future for her boy that she had not been able to see before


Anna - Luke 2:36-38

 36And there was a prophetess, Anna the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribeof Asher. She was advanced in years and had lived with [her] husbandseven years after her marriage, 37and then as a widow to the age of eighty-four. She never left the temple, serving night and day with fastingsand prayers. 38At that very moment she came up and [began] giving thanks to God, and continued to speak of Him to all those who were looking for the redemption of Jerusalem.


Mary at the death of Lazarus - Luke 11


Believe "ACT" - Worship


Believe "ACT" - Worship

Key Question - How do I honor God in the way he deserves?


Key Idea - I worship God for who He is and what He has done for me.


Psalm 95:1-2

1Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord; let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.  2Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song.


Worship - my all time favorite topic - and God's

Worship IS what we were created for - Worship is the purpose of your salvation - Worship is FAR MORE than just songs or an activity - Worship is everything.

We have spent the last couple of weeks talking about being passionate toward God.  This is all I am trying to say.  To live WHOLE HEARTEDLY toward HIM.  To love Him more than anything else in such a way that it is manifestly OBVIOUS!


Matt 22:37-38

Jesus declared, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 


This is the definition of Worship - 

Heart - the will - the decision making capacity - to CHOOSE to love HIM


SOUL - the emotions - to delight deeply in him - to have a true emotional love affair with Jesus


Mind - the intellect - to be fascinated and entranced by Him. To Fill our minds and employ our intelligence in the pursuit of the Knowledge of God!!!


But it cannot stop there because we are human beings and we must EXTERNALIZE all that is INTERNAL!  Faith without WORKS is dead.


God COMMANDS EXTERNAL acts of worship!

sing, GIVE, dance, clap, shout, kneel, bow…


Why sing songs?? - have you ever wondered this?  Worship is far more than just songs, but we CANNOT neglect the singing of songs to God because he commands us to do so!  Why?


CS Lewis talks about this beautifully in his short work - A reflection on the Psalms

  1. "We all despise the man who demands continued assurance of his own virtue… we despise still more the crowd of people round every dictator, millionaire, every celebrity who gratify that demand” page 77
    • So how is it that we can be OK with God demanding - our praise??  How is that loving of Him?
  2. What do we mean when we say that a picture is “admirable”… that admiration is correct, adequate, or appropriate… that if we do not admire we shall be stupid, insensible, and great losers, we shall have missed something! page 78
    • to NOT admire God is to seriously miss something!  
  3. (God) is the object to admire which is simply to be awake, to have entered the real world; and not to appreciate (God) is to have lost the greatest experience and in the end to have lost ALL. page 78
    • imagine those poor people who have never eaten a taco!
    • or a chocolate chip cookie!
    • never seen a great movie
    • never been in love!
    • never had a great friend!  
    • to miss these things is not to have lived at all!
  4. But the most obvious fact about praise - whether of God or anything strangely escaped me.  I thought of it in terms of compliment, approval, or the giving of honor.  I had never noticed that all enjoyment spontaneously overflows into praise unless shyness of the fear of boring others is deliberately brought it in to check it.  The world RINGS with praise - lovers praising their mistresses, readers their favorite poet, walkers praising the countryside…  I had not noticed either that just as men spontaneously praise whatever they value, so they spontaneously urge us to join them in praising it!  “isn’t she lovely?” Wasn’t it glorious?”… My whole, more general, difficulty about the praise of God depended on my absurdly denying to us, as regards the supremely Valuable, what we delight to do, what indeed we can’t help doing, about everything else we value. I think we delight to praise what we enjoy because the praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment; it is its appointed consummation… delight is incomplete until it is expressed! (Page 81)
    • Worshipping God is the unstoppable expression of a person who has EXPERIENCED GOD and the completion of our enjoyment of HIM comes ONLY when we are allowed to express that enjoyment through praise!!!
    • take a bite of that cookie and you cannot help but say MMMMMM.
    • you offer a bite to someone else immediately - OH You HAVE to try this!!!  Then you enjoy THIER ENJOYMENT of it!

God commands us to worship with every form of expression because it is only IN THE EXPRESSION of our enjoyment of Him that we will enjoy him TO THE FULLEST!!!


Worship is meant to be lavish, unashamed, and COSTLY

Mary pouring out the alabaster box on Jesus Feet

David refusing to worship God in a way that cost him nothing.



However if our External worship is ever disconnected from an internal reality it becomes detestable to God!


Worship from a wrong heart or wrong motive is detestable to God.  If it is EVER about “doing your duty” and your heart is not in it God will not receive it!

Isaiah 1:11 - 20

11"What are your multiplied sacrifices to Me?" Says the LORD. "I have had enoughof burnt offerings of rams And the fat of fed cattle; And I take no pleasure in the blood of bulls, lambs or goats. 12"When you come to appear before Me, Who requires of you this trampling of My courts? 13"Bring your worthless offerings no longer, Incense is an abomination to Me. Newmoon and sabbath, the calling of assemblies-- I cannot endure iniquity and the solemn assembly. 14"I hate your new moon [festivals] and your appointed feasts, They have becomea burden to Me; I am weary of bearing [them]. 15"So when you spread out your hands [in prayer], I will hide My eyes from you; Yes, even though you multiply prayers, I will not listen. Your hands are coveredwith blood. 16"Wash yourselves, make yourselves clean; Remove the evil of your deeds from My sight. Cease to do evil, 17Learn to do good; Seek justice, Reprove the ruthless, Defend the orphan, Pleadfor the widow. 18"Come now, and let us reason together," Says the LORD, "Though your sins are as scarlet, They will be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, They will be like wool. 19"If you consent and obey, You will eat the best of the land; 20"But if you refuse and rebel, You will be devoured by the sword." Truly, the mouth of the LORD has spoken.


but in the place of submission and repentance all will be forgiven and new worship can be released and judgement can be turned away.


We were meant to worship TOGETHER

Nearly all of the commandments to praise and worship are given to a body of believers.  They are not meant to be heard individually but CORPORATELY.

Psalm 149:1

"Praise the LORD! Sing to the LORD a new song, And His praise in the congregation of the godly ones."


Easter - New Life Begins


Easter - New Life Begins

What’s the deal with Easter?  Why do we celebrate this day?

on Passover which was only a few days ago the jewish children are taught to ask - “why is this day different than any other?”

It’s a good question!


A lot of holidays are just excuses to indulge in excess we wouldn’t normally allow


but in Easter - we find something truly worth celebration

In Easter we learn How NEW LIFE begins.

2 Cor 5 17Therefore if anyone is in Christ, [he is] a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. 


That's what this is all about.  Old things passing away. New things have come!


Jesus took the old into the grave and brought out the new!


Let's read the story:

John 20

1Now on the first [day] of the week Mary Magdalene came early to the tomb, while it was still dark,and saw the stone [already] taken away from the tomb. 2So she ran and came to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Jesus loved, and said to them, "They have taken away the Lord out of the tomb, and we do not know where they have laid Him." 3So Peter and the other disciple went forth,and they were going to the tomb. 4The two were running together; and the other disciple ran aheadfaster than Peter and came to the tomb first; 5and stooping and looking in, he saw the linen wrappings lying [there]; but he did not go in. 6And so Simon Peter also came, following him, and entered the tomb; and he saw the linen wrappings lying [there], 7and the face-cloth which had beenon His head, not lying with the linen wrappings, but rolled up in a place by itself. 8So the otherdisciple who had first come to the tomb then also entered, and he saw and believed. 9For as yet they did not understand the Scripture, that He must rise again from the dead. 10So the disciples went away again to their own homes.


11But Mary was standing outside the tomb weeping; and so, as she wept, she stooped and lookedinto the tomb; 12and she saw two angels in white sitting, one at the head and one at the feet, wherethe body of Jesus had been lying. 13And they said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping?" She saidto them, "Because they have taken away my Lord, and I do not know where they have laid Him."14When she had said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing [there], and did not know that it was Jesus. 15Jesus said to her, "Woman, why are you weeping? Whom are you seeking?"Supposing Him to be the gardener, she said to Him, "Sir, if you have carried Him away, tell me whereyou have laid Him, and I will take Him away." 16Jesus said to her, "Mary!" She turned and said to Him in Hebrew, "Rabboni!" (which means, Teacher). 17Jesus said to her, "Stop clinging to Me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to My brethren and say to them, 'I ascend to My Father and your Father, and My God and your God.'" 18Mary Magdalene came, announcing to the disciples, "I have seen the Lord," and [that] He had said these things to her.


Jesus among His Disciples


19So when it was evening on that day, the first [day] of the week, and when the doors were shutwhere the disciples were, for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood in their midst and said to them, "Peace [be] with you." 20And when He had said this, He showed them both His hands and His side.The disciples then rejoiced when they saw the Lord. 21So Jesus said to them again, "Peace [be] with you; as the Father has sent Me, I also send you." 22And when He had said this, He breathed on them and said to them, "Receive the Holy Spirit. 


What JESUS took into the grave with him

  • He took our Sin - 
    • Romans 6:23 - the wages of Sin is death but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord
    • Everything we've ever done - and we've all done things
    • Romans 3:23 - All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God
  • our self centeredness
    • When Jesus died we died our old lives lived for our own ends our own 
    • Gal 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.
  • Our shame
    • We have all done things we regret. Been people we never thought we were JESUS took that with him into the grave 
    • Isaiah 54:4“Fear not, for you will not be put to shame; And do not feel humiliated, for you will not be disgraced;  But you will forget the shame of your youth, And the reproach of your widowhood you will remember no more.  5“For your husband is your Maker, Whose name is the LORD of hosts;And your Redeemer is the Holy One of Israel, Who is called the God of all the earth.
  • Our sickness and our DEATH
    • Isaiah 53:5 5But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins.  He was beaten so we could be whole.  He was whipped so we could be healed.
    • 1 Cor 1551But let me reveal to you a wonderful secret. We will not all die, but we will all be transformed! 52It will happen in a moment, in the blink of an eye, when the last trumpet is blown. For when the trumpet sounds, those who have died will be raised to live forever. And we who are living will also be transformed. 53For our dying bodies must be transformed into bodies that will never die; our mortal bodies must be transformed into immortal bodies. 54Then, when our dying bodies have been transformed into bodies that will never die,j this Scripture will be fulfilled Death is swallowed up in victory.k55O death, where is your victory?O death, where is your sting?l56For sin is the sting that results in death, and the law gives sin its power. 57But thank God! He gives us victory over sin and death through our Lord Jesus Christ.


What JESUS brought OUT of the grave

  • Forgiveness -  a second chance -  a brand new life - free of all those things he took with him into the grave
    • Romans 10:9 - 9If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 
    • Romans 4:25 - He was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life for our justification
  • Freedom and power
    • Romans 8:1-3 1So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. 2And because you belong to him, the powera of the life-giving Spirit has freed youb from the power of sin that leads to death. 3The law of Moses was unable to save us because of the weakness of our sinful nature.c So God did what the law could not do. He sent his own Son in a body like the bodies we sinners have. And in that body God declared an end to sin’s control over us by giving his Son as a sacrifice for our sins.
  • Acceptance 
    • From God
      • Romans 5:1 Therefore, since we have been made right in God's sight by faith, we have peace with God because of what Jesus Christ our Lord has done for us.
    • From the body of Christ. The brotherhood of the resurrected 
      • 1 Peter 2:10 "Once you had no identity as a people; now you are God's people. Once you received no mercy; now you have received God's mercy."
  • Purpose
    • Gal 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.

2 Cor 5 17Therefore if anyone is in Christ, [he is] a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come. 



Believe Journey - Eternity


Believe Journey - Eternity

Click below to view the visual presentation 


Key Question - What happens next?


Key Idea - I believe there is a heaven and a hell and that Jesus will return to judge all people and to establish his eternal kingdom


Key Verse - John 14:1-2

1“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in Goda ; believe also in me. 2My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? 3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.


We are eternal beings - We were not created to die - we were created to rule with God forever - but sin stole that a bit

something of your existence will continue on forever - you will never end.


the question is what will your eternity look like?  That is something that begins here in this time - you are deciding that RIGHT NOW.


  1.  Will your eternity be based on your righteousness or the righteousness of Christ Jesus?
  2. Eternal Time Line
    • Today
    • Death
      • Hades
      • Paradise
    • 1st Resurrection - at the Rapture - these people stay
    • Millennial Reign of Jesus
    • 2nd Resurrection all who have ever lived and died
    • Great White Throne of the Final Judgment


      • New Heavens and New Earth
      • Gehenna - The Lake of Fire
      • “for them it was only the beginning of the real story. All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page: now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the Great Story which no one on earth has read: which goes on forever: in which every chapter is better than the one before.”
  3. Hell is a real place and the eternal destiny of those who reject God’s offer of forgiveness
    • was not created for mankind - it was created for Satan and His “angels” Matt 25:41
    • It is not God’s will that ANYONE go there at all - 2 Peter 3:9
    • Hell is deserved - by all sinners - thats all of us Romans 3:23 - ALL have sinned and fallen short of the Glory
    • God provides a way OUT
    • Men choose to be with God forever or to run from God forever and God allows them that choice.
    • There is are 3 different “hells” in scripture
      • Hades - the current abode of those who have not been written in the lambs book of life
      • Tartarus - the place where the worst of the angels who rebelled in different ways are being held until judgement day
      • Gehenna - the lake of fire where those who are lost and resurrected will go after the final judgement
      • a brief end times time line - we will go into this MUCH deeper on May 20th!!!!
  4. Heaven is a real place and the eternal destiny of those who receive God’s righteousness as their own by grace through faith in the work of Jesus on the Cross.
    • there are multiple heavens
      • Abraham’s side - where the promised redeemed dwelled before the Cross which is now empty
      • Paradise - the place where the saved dead go now until the resurrection/rapture of the church
      • The New Jerusalem - a city 1600 MILES cubed. - the dwelling place of the resurrected saints for all eternity
      • The New Heavens and the New Earth
        • Heaven is not some place far away which we will go to.  Heaven is coming HERE for all eternity
  5.  Still more to think about… REWARD
  6. SO!!! What will make it through the FIRE???
  7. Matt 25:14-30 - the parable of the talents
    • What have you done with all that you have?
    • based upon your understanding of the nature of the master - 
      • will you invest?  Risk?  Do the scary unsafe thing?
      • do you trust the master?
      • Things done BY FAITH
      • Things done AT GREAT PERSONAL COST
  8. No Pain, No tears, No death, No Sorrow, All things will be made new.  All we have lost because of sin will be returned to us.  All that we were meant to be we will be.  Far greater, far more glorious, far more FUN and beautiful than we can imagine, because we will be with Him.


Believe Journey - Compassion


Believe Journey - Compassion

Key Idea - “I believe God calls all Christians to show compassion to people in need”

Key Scripture - Psalm 82:3-4 

Defend the weak and the fatherless;

deliver them from the hand of the wicked.

uphold the cause of the poor and the oppressed.

4Rescue the weak and the needy;

Compassion - Is who God is:

Ex 34:5-75The LORD descended in the cloud and stood there with him as he called upon the name of the LORD. 6Then the LORDpassed by in front of him and proclaimed, "The LORD, the LORD God, compassionate and gracious,slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth; 7who keeps lovingkindness for thousands,who forgives iniquity, transgression and sin; yet He will by no means leave [the guilty] unpunished,visiting the iniquity of fathers on the children and on the grandchildren to the third and fourthgenerations." 

Nehemiah 9:17 Psalm 86:15, John 4:2, Psalm 103, Psalm 145, Joel 2:13

The Hebrew word used here is an adjective that is only ever used to describe God - it has the same root as the term for “Mother” - the same root as my wife’s name Rachel

God declares this of Himself before Moses - this is HIS GLORY.  His compassion is His Glory.

Compassion was the center of Jesus ministry:

Matt 14:14, Mark 6:34, Mark 8:2, Matt 9:36, Matt 20:34, Matt 15:32, Mark 1:41, Mark 7:13

Jesus Compassion was behind healing, teaching, raising the dead.

When Jesus was moved with compassion some of his greatest miracles were released.  

God desires that HIS Compassion be alive inside His people:

Luke 10:25 - 37 The Story of the good samaritan.  Begins with the question “what must I do to inherit eternal life”

the answer is - "Love God and Love your neighbor” - what does that look like? - 

Love your neighbor - looks like compassion - vs 37 "Go and do likewise”

When you see pain - take it on.  

When GOD’s Compassion comes alive inside of us His POWER will be released to meet the needs of those He sends us to!


Matt 25:37 37"Then the righteous will answer Him, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feedYou, or thirsty, and give You [something] to drink? 38And when did we see You a stranger, and inviteYou in, or naked, and clothe You? 39When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?'40"The King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, [even] the least [of them], you did it to Me.


Believe Journey - Humanity


Believe Journey - Humanity

Key Question - How does God see us?


Key Idea - I believe ALL people are loved by God and need Jesus Christ as their savior


John 3:16 - 16"For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.


How does God feel about the human race?

We usually equate “human” with evil, or broken, or untrustworthy and we have good reason to do so - is that how God feels about us?


The Bible’s answer is no.


Humanity was God’s greatest dream - and it still is.


We know this because Jesus became a man - The incarnation and the resurrection tell us this - in order to be holy you must first be human.


Humanity was God’s idea


Humanity is God’s instrument

  • Abraham
  • David
  • Even evil men are used by God
    • Isaiah 45 - Cyrus
    • Exod 9:16 and Romans 9 - Pharaoh 


Humanity is God’s intended!


So we need to believe this for ourselves


We need to FEEL THIS when we look at the men and women all around us



Believe Journey - The Church


Believe Journey - The Church

Your identity in Christ - really has to do with you individually personally - today we will talk about our CORPORATE IDENTITY

Key Idea - 

“I believe the church is God’s primary way to accomplish his purposes on earth.”

Key Scripture - 

Eph 4:15

15Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. 16From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

God is a God of deep emotions, desires, and plans:

God has so many things that He wants to see happen!  

He wants to see all the devastation of sin removed from His beautiful creation and He wants to reveal His glory through all of creation to all of creation and back to Himself.

God does nothing outside of relationship - Covenant:

When God has something He wants to do - God makes a promise He makes a Covenant - 

By that Covenant He raises up a PEOPLE  a Family a TRIBE a COMMUNITY to live in covenant partnership with Him. 

He does what He wanted to do IN and THROUGH the Family, the community that he raises up.

God refuses to do ANYTHING in the earth without human cooperation.

God had a covenant people in the OT:

One of the things God wanted to do - he PROMISED to do was to defeat the enemy 

God made a promise to Eve - “Your seed will CRUSH his head" - he didn’t just do it Himself (he totally could have)

God called a man named Abraham and out of this Father of Faith He created a PEOPLE - a Family - The Jewish People.  They are God’s chosen people - chosen to bring forth the Messiah Jesus the Son of the Living God

God has a covenant people NOW - here’s a hint - its you THE CHURCH.

Now in the new Covenant that community has stretched out to include ALL those who by grace through faith are unified with Christ

God sent His Son to create His new covenant People - that in and THROUGH US HIS desires for all mankind, and all the universe would be accomplished - Here’s how that works

It all begins when we BELIEVE

Matt 16:13-19

15He said to them, "But who do you say that I am?" 16SimonPeter answered, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God." 17And Jesus said to him, "Blessed are you, Simon Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal [this] to you, but My Father who is in heaven.

  • We ARE brought into the covenant when the Holy Spirit shows us WHO JESUS IS and we receive WHAT HE DID.

Once is begins it’s unstoppable

 18"I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it. 

19"I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven." 20ThenHe warned the disciples that they should tell no one that He was the Christ.

  • What Jesus is going to do through his covenant community cannot be stopped by the enemy!
  • He will give us the keys - authority - that’s the church not just Peter
  • He gives his people the power to do what he has called them to do!

WE must CHOOSE to step into and cooperate WITH this

Eph 4:15

15Instead, speaking the truth in love, we will grow to become in every respect the mature body of him who is the head, that is, Christ. 

  • Grow into every respect the mature body of Him - Jesus - the physical presence of Jesus on the planet carrying all His power and His authority - we operate in the world as His active presence

16From him the whole body, joined and held together by every supporting ligament, grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work.

  • Only works as we are:
    • LOVING Him as the head (in charge) - we operate in the world as His active presence AS HE DIRECTS and more and more and deeper and deeper
    • LOVING ourselves - 
      • understanding of our role in midst of the body
      • active participation AS OURSELVES bringing our piece of the puzzle to the table our cog to the machine
        • our time
        • our energy
        • our gifting
        • our resources
    • LOVING each other - 
      • honoring the different role that each person in His body plays that we CANNOT play.  
        • looking at the men and women around you and caring as much about them as you do about yourself.
      • Receiving what they bring - honoring who they are and what they bring and thanking God for them.  

The One who Causes all this to Happen is the Holy Spirit

  • John 20:22 - Jesus Breathes on His disciples and says - RECIEVE THE HOLY SPIRIT!
  • Acts 1:8 -  8but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.”

Prayer for baptism!


Believe Journey - Our Identity in Christ


Believe Journey - Our Identity in Christ

Key Question - in light of all this - WHO AM I?

Key Idea - “I believe I am significant because of my position as a child of God.”

John 1:12 - 12But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to becomechildren of God, [even] to those who believe in His name, 

Romans 8:28 - 39

28And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to [His] purpose. 29For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined [to become] conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30and thesewhom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.

  • A people of the good news - NOTHING that happens to us can steal from us forever
  • Called according to His Purpose
  • Foreknown
  • Predestined to be conformed into the Image of Jesus
  • Called
  • Justified
  • Glorified!

31What then shall we say to these things? If God [is] for us, who [is] against us? 32He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things? 33Who will bring a charge against God's elect? God is the one who justifies; 34who is the one who condemns? ChristJesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us. 35Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, ornakedness, or peril, or sword?

  • FREELY giving us ALL things
  • IT IS IMPOSSIBLE to accuse you! - you are innocent FOREVER
  • You are on Jesus prayer list


37But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. 38For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers,39nor 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.

  • MORE THAN CONQUERORS - we win we win we win we win!!!!
  • Inseparable from Christ love - THE BELOVED of GOD

Communion - a celebration and an activation


Believe Journey - The Bible


Believe Journey - The Bible

2 Tim 3:16-17

16All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.

“I believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God that guides my beliefs and actions.”

God reveals Himself

God Has a plan

God invited you into relationship

All Scripture is inspired by God

12For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart.

23for you have been born again not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, [that is], through the living and enduring word of God.24For, "ALL FLESH IS LIKE GRASS, AND ALL ITS GLORY LIKE THE FLOWER OF GRASS. THE GRASS WITHERS, AND THE FLOWER FALLS OFF, 25BUT THE WORD OF THE LORD ENDURES FOREVER." And this is the word which was preached to you.

  • Inspired - God breathed - birthed of the Holy Spirit who is the breathe of God - that means the Spirit of God is active within and through it.
  • God has given this word LIFE
  • He SPOKE The universe into existence and now He is still SPEAKING - it carries that same power!
  • Heb 4:12
  • 1 Peter 1:23
    • The Word of God is the imperishable seed - the seed that does not pass away - has been planted in your heart!
    • When the Word of God takes root in you - you will be BORN FROM ABOVE and Born INTO resurrection life!
  • Rom 10:17 17So faith [comes] from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.
    • Even the power to believe comes from the Word of God itself - in HEARING THE WORD - the God grants faith to the human heart.
      • they didn’t READ God’s word back then MOST of them couldn’t read!
  • 1 Thes 2:13 For this reason we also constantly thank God that when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men, but for what it really is, the word of God, which also performs its work in you who believe.
    • Treat it like the word of GOD and not just any word - The same word that said “LET THERE BE LIGHT”


Believe Journey - Salvation


Believe Journey - Salvation


We started this journey with the question “Who is God” - we learned that:

  • God reveals Himself
  • There is one True God
  • He exists as Father, Son, and Holy Spirit

Then last week we learned that this God is a personal God:

  • Is Good
  • He has a Plan for us
  • He truly Cares for us - He is knocking on OUR door - Our God is chasing US

This week we are going to talk about Salvation:

The Problem - Sin - 

This problem is not always easy to understand

It is easy for us to think that our sin is “no big deal” - but it is a very big deal - bigger than we can imagine

Sin is UGLIER than we can ever understand - because God is more beautiful and valuable than we could ever understand

Romans 1:19-22

19because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. 20For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal powerand divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made,

So the reality of Who God is makes up the very DNA of the universe - everything that exists finds its source code in the nature and glory of God - it harmonizes with Who He is and what He is like.  It is the base pattern upon which the universe is built - 

we see this elsewhere as well. - Heb 1:3 says that the universe is held together “by the word of His power”

 so that they are without excuse. 21For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptibleman and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.

God created the universe, YOU AND ME INCLUDED, as an expression of His own worth and value.  To point us BACK to the reality of which all this is only a reflection and cause us to KNOW, VALUE, and ENJOY GOD HIMSELF above all else!  We knew who He was - we know in the depths of us that He is the ultimate reality the most valuable thing, the highest worth in all the universe - indeed the entire worth OF the universe and beyond

John Piper puts it like this:

It is good to be still and let this sink in — to know that God is God (Psalm 46:10). And the universe, by comparison with God’s greatness and beauty and worth, is insignificant. I say that carefully. I expect you to hear it carefully. And that includes all seven billion people created to inhabit the earth.

Behold, the nations are like a drop from a bucket, and are accounted as the dust on the scales. (Isaiah 40:15)

Until this sinks in — that the universe, and every created thing in it, is like dust in the scales on one side, and God is like Mount Everest in the scales on the other side, virtually everything in the Bible will be distorted. We won’t see it in its proper proportions and relations.

And we in our ridiculousness and rebellion have exchanged the glory of God for the image - we have traded the most valuable thing in all of creation for a PICTURE of that most valuable thing.  

We have traded a Lamborghini for a poster of a Lamborghini

We have traded sweet refreshing water that would quench our thirst for a picture of water and we remain thirsty!

Sin is the cancer of the universe - it works AGAINST the DNA that is the image of God - it destroys, it kills, it steals - Sin is ALL TOGETHER VILE, DESTRUCTIVE, and REPULSIVE

Think about it like this - 

Behind all pleasure, all joy, all beauty, all things that are in any way enjoyable is the Glory of God - the Glory of God peaking through the veil is what MAKES those things pleasurable, enjoyable, beautiful.  When we sin we exchange the glory of God, the very source of our very  desire for something that in itself HAS NOTHING PLEASURABLE OR ENJOYABLE OR BEAUTIFUL about it.

It’s like buying the most beautiful painting in the world and throwing the canvas away so you can have the frame.

It’s like buying a candy bar and throwing the candy away so you can keep just the wrapper.

In order to get back what we threw away we will have to pay for it all over again - The Whole COST which we no longer have.

When we talk about sin and glory we go far beyond cost that can be counted in dollars - when we have exchanged the glory of God for something else we are talking about value that can only be measured in life and death.  We give away our love, our life to something other than God we cannot just get that back.  It’s gone.  Forever.  We are left without the eternal gift that God gave us to begin with. Himself.  So we will exist forever without life.  The Bible Calls it the second death.  Hell.  

Because this is what Sin is like  - All of Gods immortal imeasurable unstoppable eternal power is set against it - the Bible calls this his WRATH - 

God RIGHTLY HATES sin and in His great love He Makes WAR against Sin to destroy it completely.

  • God cannot remain himself and allow sin to continue
  • God cannot change

YOU - are a sinner and your whole life is full of sin:

So We have a problem! - You and I have a problem and God Himself HAS A PROBLEM

Sin doesn’t just go away by wishing it away:

How can God be the judge of sin AND the forgiver of the ungodly????

Thankfully God also has a solution:

Sin must be judged and punished - the eternal worth of the glory of God must be REPAID

Here is the one place where the book and I are at a disagreement - on page 80 Mr Frazee calls this solution a “plan B”.  This was never Plan B as if God was hoping for one thing but ready for another.  God always knew. God always understood exactly what we would do when we were given the choice.  He knew we would rebel.  BEFORE WE EVER DID God had ALREADY DONE ALL it would take to bring us back.

We traded life and soul to gain the nothing called sin.  So Jesus is going to trade HIS life to give us OURS Back.

The Glory of God is of infinite worth and we traded it for NOTHING so Jesus gave up EVERYTHING to give us back to the Glory of God.  An infinite cost was owed and our infinite God paid that infinite cost with His blood.  So that He could save us from ourselves.  

Jesus paid for the Picaso again - just so we could have it - but that picture is just too small.  Too Weak.

Jesus - the uncreated Son of God took our infinitely ugly infinitely COSTLY sin upon Himself and it killed Him.  

Isaiah 53:3-6

3He was despised and forsaken of men, A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; And like one from whom men hide their face He was despised, and we did not esteem Him. 4Surely our griefs He Himself bore, And our sorrows He carried; Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken,Smitten of God, and afflicted. 5But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well-being [fell] upon Him, And by His scourging we are healed. 6All of us like sheep have gone astray, Each of us has turned to his own way; But the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all To fall on Him.

and then later

10But the LORD was pleased To crush Him, putting [Him] to grief; If He would render Himself [as] a guilt offering,

You and I deserve the Hell we purchased with our choices.  We deserve the eternal worthlessness we CHOSE with all our hearts, but Jesus loves us and paid the price for us to be restored and given back ALL WE TRADED AWAY.

NOW We live as restored sons.  We live as ones give another chance.  We would be stupid to make the same trades we made before.  We have been given another chance to understand the true worth we threw away.  We couldn’t do it for ourselves.  We had no way to pay the cost.  We condemned and Jesus changed it all!!

Eph 2:8-10

For by GRACE we have been saved through faith and that not of yourselves it is the gift of God that no man may boast.


Believe - God


Believe - God

We are starting a new journey this week - 

 - Hand out the books - this book is also available as an eBook for like 99 cents if you like

Reading the Bible Diachronically - by subject - focussing on the core things that we should know, do and have as a part of our character in order to - 




Like Jesus

Each Sunday sermon on this journey is going to be an INTRODUCTION into the next chapter of the book.  

We are inviting you to get to the bottom of what it means to be a follower of Jesus

To be a Disciple means to be an active learner of SOMEONE - where we seek to adopt His lifestyle, His value system, His perspectives - to love what He loves and to Hate what He hates.

What does Jesus Believe?

What does Jesus DO?

What is Jesus LIKE?

So lets Dive into Our books now - 

We start with the foundational principal of the universe

GOD - Himself

open to page 15 in your believe books:

Each week of this journey will center around one key question, idea and scripture.  In the book we will walk through scriptures that answer that key question and explore several aspects and applications of that key question. We will see WHY scholars of the Bible have come to the conclusion that is our key idea and we will have one verse that will anchor that answer - that idea in our hearts

Our Key question for this week is:


an incredibly simple question but your answer changes EVERYTHING.  AW Tozer said "What comes into our minds when we think about God is the most important thing about us”

Jesus said the FIRST and GREATEST Commandment is to LOVE GOD with all your heart mind soul and strength

in other words the highest priority in all of creation is to love God - 

We just talked a couple of weeks ago about Hebrews 11:6 where it says that to please God you must believe He exists and that he rewards the who earnestly seek Him.

We should not be wishy washy in our understanding of God - who he is and what he wants - these are of FIRST IMPORTANCE to us

Our Key idea for this week is:

I believe the God of the Bible is the ONLY true God - Father Son and Holy Spirit

Our Key scripture for this week is:

“May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.

2 Corinthians 13:14”

Our Map - Page 16 - 4 dimensions

  • God Reveals Himself
  • One True God
  • God in Three Persons - Father Son and Holy Spirit
  • The Trinity in Our lives

God Reveals Himself - 

The evidence of who God is shines all around us all the time.  We can just take a deep breath and receive knowledge of God reality and glory and generosity - 

Romans 1:20 "For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So they are without excuse.” in other words each of us knows about God from the moment we are first given life.  Knowledge of His existence and his nature are built into our very DNA.

It has been shown to us by WHAT HAS BEEN MADE - so God reveals Himself through nature through His creation

But it is IN HIS WORD that God reveals Himself most powerfully and most reliably.  This is God’s perfect revelation to us.

 - What does it look like to LIVE LIKE WE BELIEVE THIS??

  • To live to see and to know everything about God that He wants us to know.  The TRUTH not falsehood
  • let the Bible be precious beyond words to us!  Spend time in it and with it and come to know it inside and out
  • Jesus tells us in John 4:24 - that God is seeking those who would worship Him in Spirit and in TRUTH - that we would SEE what is true about Him and that we would ENJOY it! - Psalm 148

One True God - 

There is a swelling falsehood in our culture today that would tell us there are many ways to heaven, many “gods” and that it is simply “faith” that matters and not which God you believe in etc.  That is not what the Bible says.

1 Kings 18:21Elijah camenear to all the people and said, "How long [will] you hesitate between two opinions? If the LORD is God, follow Him; but if Baal,follow him." But the people did not answer him a word.

There is only one God - You can be right about Him and you can be wrong about Him.  IF HE IS GOD - we should SERVE HIM.

One Eternal reality - the genesis of all that is - the source of all things - the sustainer of all things - One Holy - Infinitely greater and stronger and more beautiful than ANYTHING else.  God - all things contained within Him.

He is the source of all things

He is the sustainer of all things

He is the purpose of all things - the significance of all things is derived only from that things relation to HIM

Romans 11:34-36

34For WHO HAS KNOWN THE MIND OF THE LORD, OR WHO BECAME HIS COUNSELOR? 35OrWHO HAS FIRST GIVEN TO HIM THAT IT MIGHT BE PAID BACK TO HIM AGAIN? 36For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him [be] the glory forever. Amen.

AS a creation of His He is the great mystery the great pursuit the great destiny - 

 - What does it look like to LIVE LIKE WE BELIEVE THIS??

  • Jesus gave us the answer - Love the Lord your God with all your Heart, mind soul and strength
  • Our Lives are NOT about us - they are about Him

God in Three Persons - Father Son and Holy Spirit

There are SO MANY things that God reveals to us about Himself but one of the most mysterious and fascinating is his existence as 3 in 1.  Trinity.

There are realities about God that are so far beyond us that they all we can do is stand back in awe and say WOW!  

Luke 3:21-22 21Now when all the people were baptized, Jesus was also baptized, and while He was praying, heaven was opened, 22and the Holy Spirit descended upon Him in bodily form like a dove, and a voice came out of heaven, "You are My beloved Son, in You I am well-pleased.”

 - What does it look like to LIVE LIKE WE BELIEVE THIS??


Vision 2017


Vision 2017

Hab 2:2 - Then the LORD answered me and said, "Record the vision And inscribe it on tablets, That the one who reads it may run.

Prov 29:18 - 18Where there is no vision, the people are unrestrained, But happy is he who keeps the law.

Let’s Build a Fire: Acts 2:42 They devoted themselves to

  • Proclamation - The Apostle’s Teaching
  • People - the fellowship, the breaking of bread
  • Presence - Prayer

I think it is a good idea to talk about where we want to go together this year

The Vision has not changed but we do want to move FORWARD and continue to grow in these three things!

  • Proclamation
    • Inside the church - 
      • We will be doing taking the “Believe” journey this year
      • Weekend intensives - specific topic studies
    • Outside the church
      • Revive Go Teams
      • Other ministry opportunities
        • Youth ministry beginning in February
        • Youth For Christ - soon
        • Missions expansion
          • Trip this summer - Jan 29th
          • raise more money support more missionaries
        • Turning Point
        • Jail Ministry
    • It is my prayer that we become a people who are contagious about our faith - that we welcome people into our family constantly
  • People
    • Living Rooms
    • Carry Ins
    • Other fun activities 
    • Battle Buddies - One person you are connected to and accountable with
  • Presence
    • We need to establish a community where we let people know when there is a need AND we respond to those needs with prayer first and practicality second
    • continue Warfare prayer and stand in the gap
    • upcoming prayer conference
    • Monthly Worship nights

Through all of this it is my prayer and our goal as a church leadership team to double in size by this time next year.

I cannot do this on my own:

  • Giving
    • we need to achieve financial independence
      • Our weekly budget is $2500 - our regular weekly offering has been hovering right under $2000 each week.
      • we have had a lot of help this last year - First Assembly $2000 per month - that is being cut in half now.
    • we are going to pass the plate every week
    • we are going to continue to take a monthly offering for the food bank
    • we are also going to take a monthly offering specifically for missions
  • Volunteerism
    • More than anything I need new LEADERSHIP
      • I need you asking the Lord where you are supposed to plug in
      • I need you asking the Lord what you are supposed to lead