A church that is healthy is involved in the gospel ministry. Believers are to be conforming to the Lord Jesus and growing in the message of the gospel. Our mission on earth is to reflect the name and character of the Lord.
That the Tree Might Grow!I Corinthians 9:19-23This message was inspired by the real-life story of NASA flight engineer José Hernández, "A Million Miles Away", follows him on a decades-long journey, from a rural village in Michoacán, Mexico, to more than 200 miles above the Earth in the International Space Station. The schoolteacher had come by to tell the father of mother that you keep moving around too much and you need to stay in one place so that "the Tree might grow." With the support of his family, José's drive & determination culminates in the opportunity to achieve his seemingly impossible goal. Paul was saying we need to have a "Whatever It Takes" attitude about reaching the unchurched. José Hernández was turned down as a astronaut until the twelfth time. Paul had a desire to break down barriers and to build bridges to reach the unbeliever for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Both success and defeat tempt you to stop paying the price. When an athlete stops paying the price, he not only stops winning, he stops competing. He ends up on the bench. It's the same for a believer. That's why Paul said that he didn't want to be disqualified.
We've known many believers who disqualified themselves. Some of them do it by headline-making sinful behavior. But most people disqualify themselves by way of apathy. By way of laziness. By way of selfishness.If you want to thrive, put this character check in place. Decide today that you will continue to take the road less traveled, the road of self-discipline, and you will continue pay the price as long as there is a race to be run.
Parenting is a remarkable adventure, brimming with opportunities to shape the future. But the question that often lingers is: How can we raise our children the right way?
Listen to this message as Pastor Scudder unlocks the secrets to raising epic kids.
In this extended series on suffering and trials we explore the nature of
God's discipline upon sinning believers. This is often a misunderstood aspect of our relationship
to our heavenly Father and yet the bible is replete with examples and instruction regarding it. In
this final message we consider the way God brings trials and hardships into the life of a believer
to grow them. In a very real way we will learn that it is in and through adversity that our faith
both matures and is purified.
The apostle Paul uses the athletic metaphors of a race and a battle to describe the Christian life. The runners and fighters are the new Israel, the Israel of God, and the last three verses of 1 Corinthians 9 introduce us to the old Israel described in the first thirteen verses in 10. The correlation between the two, Christians and Israelites, helps to define the race as the Christian life moving toward Jesus Christ who has the victory and is sharing the prize with all of his brethren and it helps us to define the battle throughout the Christian life against sin, both the internal and external. Because Christians have victory, they are equipped for the race and the battle. God, who is faithful, makes a way to overcome sin and achieve the incorruptible crown through Jesus Christ by the Holy Spirit.
Why must manmade hopes for deliverance fail? Isaiah 21 looks forward to the first serial reading in morning public worship on the coming Lord's Day. In these seventeen verses of Holy Scripture, the Holy Spirit teaches us that manmade hope for deliverance must fail, because even the troubles of this world are part of God's design to bring forth the lasting fruit of His chosen people.