Strange and Different
By David Frederick - May 14, 2017
We find the apostle Paul alone in Athens, the cultural center of the world. As he waits for his companions, Paul notices the city is swamped with idols and finds himself provoked by the spiritual state of the city. This was not the first time he encountered this sort of thing, but it was the first time he saw it on this scale. What we’ve noticed about Paul throughout the book of Acts is his boldness to stay in uncomfortable places with the message of hope in Christ. Paul’s response to the city filled with idols was to go to the places where people were, everyday, with the gospel. Paul stuck out and his message was so new and different it caught the attention of the people and gave Paul a hearing at the highest level. Followers of Christ will always be strangers in a strange land with a unique and life changing message of faith in Jesus. The message will challenges us in how we respond to the city filled with idols and it will call us to examine where God placed has placed each of us, everyday, as a messenger of the good news in Jesus?
The Nobility at Berea
By Mike Burchfield - May 7, 2017
After leaving Thessalonica due to rising opposition to the gospel, Paul and his friends traveled the Berea and visited the synagogue there. But as they preached the gospel to the Jews in Berea, they found the Jews in Berea were much more ‘noble’ than those in Thessalonica. What made the Berea Jews more noble? And what did that mean for the preaching of the gospel? What does the attitude of the Bereans teach Christians and those who aren’t, who live in the 21st century?
Those Men Who Turned the World Upside Down
By Mike Burchfield - April 30, 2017
Looking back over history, there are many figures who are remembered for the contribution they made in life. Many of those people have some trait or act or attitude that people knew them by or remember them by; and the apostle Paul was no exception. By the time he and Silas arrived in the city of Thessalonica he was known by both his friends and also by his foes. Thus, he and Silas were labeled by those critical of his message as the men who have turned the world upside down. What was behind this label? What caused Paul’s adversaries to say this of he and Silas? This sermon explores the accusation made against Paul and Silas and whether it was merited or not. Further, the sermon reveals why this sort of label might be placed on Christians when the gospel of Jesus Christ is fully preached and it’s implications fully explained. The message has particular relevance for the church of there 21st century as christians find themselves more at odds with the prevailing social agendas of our times.
The Nature and Hope of the Resurrection by Mike Burchfield - April 23, 2017
On Easter Sunday our sermon was from 1 Corinthians 15:1-34 and focused on the centrality and importance of the resurrection of Christ. In this second sermon from 1 Corinthians 15:35-52 two common questions which some ask about the resurrection of the dead are first, how are the dead raised? And second, what kind of body do those who are raised possess? The sermon answers these two questions, by showing the ways the resurrection bodies of Christians will be like Christ’s glorious body. Beyond this, however, the sermon also gives insight into why the resurrection from the dead is necessary, too.
The Centrality and Reality of the Resurrection by Mike Burchfield - April 16, 2017
1 Corinthians 15:1-28
Do you wonder what happens after one dies? Is there really nothing for us on the other side, as many of the ancients or as the modern evolutionist says? Or is there life beyond the grave and if so, what is that life like? This sermon answers the first question because in the same way everyone dies - ancient or modern - everyone also seeks hope - and HOPE is found in the gospel of Jesus Christ. What is the gospel - the good news of Jesus Christ - and how does the gospel give us hope in the face of the seeming finality of death? Paul gives us a clear answer from 1 Corinthians 15:1-28, where we learn first that Christ rose from the dead, and that He did so in order that in Him all will be made alive, bodily, after death. Those who trust Christ Jesus have hope in the face of death and look forward to the resurrection because the Lord is Risen!! He is risen indeed!
Salvation through Suffering
By Mike Burchfield - April 9, 2017
For anyone who studies the scriptures, and for those who have walked with Christ for a while and observed how God’s will often comes about, it is clear that, “God moves - God works - in a mysterious way, His wonders to perform” - and the story of Paul and Silas in Philippi and the salvation of the Philippian jailer illustrates this. In Acts 16:16-34, Paul performs a good deed toward a servant girl by casting out a demon from her. Paul’s good deed quickly turns out very bad, however, and results in great suffering for he and Silas. But as a result of their suffering, a jailer and his whole household believes on the Lord Jesus Christ. In this story we see the subtly of Satan and how he works to pervert the gospel and we see him overcome by the power of Christ. We also see once again how simple the good news of Jesus Christ really is. And finally, we see how sometimes, God brings His salvation to pass in peoples lives through the suffering of his people. This sermon is particularly applicable for Christians who are in the midst of suffering and for those seeking after Christ, but who have not yet fully trusted Him.
Closed Doors and Unexpected Opportunities
By David Frederick - April 2, 2017
Paul is embarking on his second missionary journey yet this time he has a new team and is unknowingly going to a new location. In the process we see his faithful response toGod as his original plan falls apart and as God closes down doors to direct him and his team to unexpected opportunities to preach the gospel. In this passage of scripture we learn that God is faithful to his mission and will often direct his people through closed doors to build up their faithfulness. Followers of Jesus are faced with the question, do we see these closed doors as opportunities for discouragement or as opportunities for discernment as God calls us to faithful obedience?