What Are You Willing to Die For?
By Mike Burchfield - September 17, 2017
What are you willing to die for? How would you answer that question if someone asked it of you? This sermon from Acts 21:1-16 asks this question of believers and shows how Paul answered it for himself. The sermon also explains how, because of his answer, no potential affliction, no affection of people and no predicted persecution had the power to turn him away from his goal of reaching Jerusalem before the celebration of Pentecost. The message is particularly relevant to us today and shows how asking and answering this question for ourselves empowers our faith in Christ in the 21st century.
The Warfare of the Elders of a Church
By Mike Burchfield - September 10, 2017
This sermon is the second message from Acts 20 about the task of church elders, with the focus of the sermon being on the warfare of elders. In the same way we learn from verse 28 that elders are to care for the church, so we learn from Acts 20:29-32 that elders are to protect the church from people who would ‘ravage the flock’ or who would introduce twisted or perverse teaching in an attempt to draw away disciples after themselves. Because church elders are tasked with the care of Christ’s bride in Christ’s absence, Paul impresses upon the Ephesian elders, as well as to elders today, the urgency of fulfilling their task of leading and feeding the church as well as of protecting the church for Christ’s sake and the good of their respective congregations.
Wisdom in the Way of Christ
a study in the books of Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and Song of Solomon
Wisdom for Romantic Love (an overview of Song of Solomon) by David Frederick - September 3, 2017
Song of Solomon 2:7-17
Song of Solomon is a celebration of physical intimacy in marriage and the way it works well in the universe God created. It shows us a loving, exclusive, mutually giving commitment in marriage leads to safety, intimacy and pleasure without letting it control you or become something you worshippers. This sermon explores how the book Song of Solomon gives a picture of redeemed romantic love, the need to treasure and guard romantic love and the hope and longing we have for deeper and truer intimacy is fulfilled in Christ.
Wisdom When Life Seems Meaningless (an overview of Ecclesiastes) by Brad Mortensen - August 27, 2017
We live in a broken world where we struggle to find identity, control pain and escape death. The problem is, that we have no meaningful ability to change the nature of the world. We seek pleasure to avoid the sorrow of the broken world, or seek to accomplish things to prove we have value. We try to control the world or protect ourselves with money and knowledge. But none of it works. This is the reality of human existence on planet earth.
This is a hopeless reality, but there is hope. Ecclesiastes tells us hope is found in accepting the reality that the world is broken and looking up to the God who knows all things and has ordained what will be for His purposes. This message explores practical ways that we can identify how we cope and interact with this broken world and how we can find hope in the midst of that which seems meaningless and hopeless.
Wisdom for Every-day Life in God's World (an overview of Proverbs) by Joshua Camacho - August 20, 2017
The book of proverbs is filled with short memorable sayings about how to live life on earth. But how do proverbs work, to whom do they apply, and how do they point us to the Lord Jesus Christ? Find out in today's message as we unpack what Proverbs are, what the book of Proverbs teaches, and how the whole book anticipates the coming glories of Christ.
Wisdom for Worship (an overview of the Psalms) by Mike Burchfield - August 13, 2017
Psalm 136; Selected
In the same way the book of Job provides the believer with wisdom in suffering, so the Psalms provides wisdom for worship or our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ. In this message an overview of the Psalms is given. The purpose of the Psalms in the scripture is explained. And ways which the Psalms aid christians in knowing God, in worshipping Him and in practicing prayer to Him is developed. By way of application, the sermon also contains a reading plan for those who desire to make the Psalms a part of their regular spiritual diet.
Wisdom in Suffering (an overview of the book of Job) by Mike Burchfield - August 6, 2017
Job 1:1-5; selected scriptures from Job
This sermon is the first message in a five week series titled Wisdom in the Way of Christ. Each message is an overview of one of the five wisdom books from the Old Testament. Job is the first of the wisdom books. Job’s main theme is that suffering is common in this life - but God is greater than our suffering, and reveals Himself to us in it. This overview of Job introduces the books of wisdom and then moves on to survey Job by examining the books introduction, it’s four dialogues and it’s conclusion. Many lesson are drawn out from Job as well as the key to Job’s perseverance under such severe trial. Because Job was written about a real sufferer and about the God the sufferer knew and served, this book is particularly helpful for those who are in the midst of suffering themselves. Job teaches us that suffering is not random but rather, has a purpose. The book also shows how the Lord is Himself in control of suffering. The misconception that health, wealth and wisdom are markers of God’s blessing while suffering is not is also revealed. And Job shows that the gospel is the only solid foundation which provides bedrock upon which to stand during times of suffering and trial.
The Work and Warfare of the Elders of a Church
By Mike Burchfield - July 30, 2017
In the same way fruit trees and plants require care, feeding and protection in order to be healthy and fruitful, so do churches. And the work of care and oversight of Christ’s church falls to a group of men known elders. In this sermon, from Acts 20:28, the apostle Paul’s charge to the elders of the church at Ephesus is expounded and the work of church elders is explained. We learn from Paul’s charge to these elders that church elders are tasked with the oversight and care, first of themselves and also of the church. And they are to lead, feed and protect the church primarily because of what the church is - the church of God and the bride of Christ. Because church elders are tasked with the care of Christ’s bride, in Christ’s absence, Paul impresses upon the Ephesian elders, as well as to elders today, the urgency of fulfilling their task and excelling in their work, for Christ’s sake.
A Profile of a Servant of Christ
By Mike Burchfield - July 23, 2017
In this sermon, taken from Acts 20:17-27, Paul is speaking with the elders of the church at Ephesus and as he reminds them of his ministry among them, a profile of a servant of Christ emerges. We learn from Paul how an approved servant of Jesus Christ is one who serves humbly and sacrificially and whose service is gospel focused. Paul modeled this type service for Christ in hopes that the Ephesian elders would continue to do the same after his departure from them. The lesson for us in todays church is that Paul’s profile provides a good pattern for servants, whether one’s ministry is to ones wife, children, peers or as a deacon, elder, community group or youth leader or for servants in children’s discipleship.
Profile of a New Testament Church
By Mike Burchfield - July 16, 2017
All of the recorded sermons and speeches in Acts, up until chapter 20, are either preached to unbelievers or are given in defense of the gospel message. In Acts 20, however, there is an exception to this rule in verses 7 to 11 and 17 to 35. In those verses Luke recorded two instances where the audience was christian; and in Luke’s description we see a picture of early worship, teaching, oversight structure and leadership character. This sermon, which is taken from vv. 7-11 and 17-28, focuses on each of these pictures to provide a three dimensional profile of the New Testament Church.