*No church is perfect because it is filled with imperfect people.
I. THE HOLY SPIRIT PRODUCES GRACE IN THE LIVES OF GOD’S PEOPLE
*Mega grace is the result of the Gospel loosening the grip of greed on your life and tightening your grip of others.
II. GENEROSITY IS THE SIGN OF A HEALTHY CHURCH
*Grace filled people are generous people!
1. Filled with the Spirit
*Money may not be your idol but it will reveal what your idol is.
2. Mission Driven
3. Like Minded
4. Love In Action
5. Leading By Example
III. SATAN FAILED AT ELIMINATING JESUS SO HE SEEKS TO DESTROY THE CHURCH
*When Satan fills your heart you will trade Jesus for money.
“The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?”
“For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, hefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness: All these evil things come from within, and defile the man.”
“Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living God.”
*The surest way to flush your heart of wickedness is to have your heart filled with a love for Jesus.
IV. GOD IS VERY SERIOUS ABOUT SIN
Quote: “God is indeed long suffering, patient, and slow to anger. In fact he is so slow to anger that when his anger does erupt, we are shocked and offended by it. We forget rather quickly that God’s patience is designed to lead us to repentance, to give us a time to be redeemed. Instead of taking advantage of this patience by coming humbly to Him for forgiveness, we use this grace as an opportunity to become bolder in our sin. We delude ourselves into thinking that either God doesn’t care about it, or that he is powerless to punish us. The supreme folly is that we think we will get away with our revolt.” R.C. Sproul, The Holiness of God
“Then had the churches rest throughout all Judaea and Galilee and Samaria, and were edified; and walking in the fear of the Lord, and in the comfort of the Holy Ghost, were multiplied.”
*When a church fears God the result is grace, generosity and growth!
II Peter 1:16
“For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.”
“For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.”
I Corinthians 10:11
“Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.”
1. We must hear the Word.
2. We must heed the Word.
3. We must honor the Word.
*The power and presence of the Holy Spirit is still at work today!
Quote: “We may as well face it: the whole level of spirituality among us is low. We have measured ourselves by ourselves until the incentive to seek higher plateaus in the things of the Spirit is all but gone…. [We] have imitated the world, sought for popular favor, manufactured delights to substitute for the joy of the Lord and produced a cheap and synthetic power to substitute for the power of the Holy Ghost.” A. W. Tozer
I. THE SPIRIT’S MOVING
*They were connected and they were committed.
*There was unity in the community.
Quote: “In essentials unity, in non-essentials, liberty, in all things, charity.”
*The world cannot tolerate what the Scriptures teach and they are not going to stand by the Church and coddle Christians.
*Prayerlessness is not a self-discipline problem, it is a sign that you are not walking in the Spirit.
1. Communion with God in His Word.
2. Close connections with God’s people.
3. Commitment to prayer with and for others.
"Never will I be satisfied until God works in convicting power and men and women weep their way to the cross…oh that He would break me down and cause me to weep for the salvation of lost souls." Oswald Smith
II. A MEGA CHURCH
*The result of believing in the Gospel and obeying the Gospel is that you become a bold and generous person!
1. Where do I see myself in the picture of what God is doing through His Church?
2. Who do I know that needs to become a part of the picture?
3. What am I willing to do in order to reach the people I know with the Gospel?
4. Will I pray for boldness to proclaim the gospel?
“And others had trial of cruel mockings and scourgings, yea, moreover of bonds and imprisonment: They were stoned, they were sawn asunder, were tempted, were slain with the sword: they wandered about in sheepskins and goatskins; being destitute, afflicted, tormented; (Of whom the world was not worthy:) they wandered in deserts, and in mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.”
Quote: “The blood of the martyrs is the seed of the Church.” Tertullian
*Persecution did not destroy the church but instead it served to strengthen, purify and mature the church.
Quote: “Persecution is an inevitable element of genuine Christian faith”. R. Kent Hughes
“If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. But all these things will they do unto you for my name's sake, because they know not him that sent me.”
Quote: “Suffering in the badge of Christianity. The disciple is not above his Lord. Discipleship means allegiance to the suffering Christ, and it is therefore not at all surprising that Christians should be called upon to suffer.” Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Quote: “Salvation is free but discipleship will cost you your life”. Dietrich Bonhoeffer
I. THE SAME PEOPLE AND SAME PROBLEM AS BEFORE
*Religion and religious people always run to the rules and regulations to exercise control.
II. THE POWER OF JESUS NAME
*The name of Jesus is the only name that will save!
*Is it obvious to the people around us that we have been with Jesus?
Quote: “All religions are exclusive, but Christianity is the most inclusive exclusivity there is.” Tim Keller
*The beauty of the Gospel is that it confronts us in our sin and offers us grace.
III. THE BOLD PRONOUNCEMENT
*Are we obeying the high calling and holy command by Jesus to go and make disciples?
John 12:42, 43
“Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue: For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.”
*Will there be overwhelming evidence of my love for Jesus this week?
“Money has never made man happy, nor will it; there is nothing in its nature to produce happiness. The more of it one has the more one wants.”¬ – Benjamin Franklin
*Everyone will come to a place in life where they realize that money is not the solution.
I. THE MIRACLE
*Healing was not a gift to believers to make them better. It was a sign to nonbelievers to convince them to believe the message of the gospel.
II Corinthians 12:7-10
“And lest I should be exalted above measure through the abundance of the revelations, there was given to me a thorn in the flesh, the messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I should be exalted above measure. For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ's sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.”
*God may not heal you to keep you humble.
*God may not heal you to keep you close to Him.
*God may not heal you so that you might better help others.
*The biggest need in your life is not to be healed from your “issue” but to be made spiritually whole through salvation in Jesus Christ!
II. THE MESSAGE
“Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross;”
*Repentance, Refreshing, and Restitution.
I Peter 2:24
“Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed.”
*Everything must revolve around the preaching and teaching of God’s Word.
*The cry in the heart of every lost soul must be answered with “repent”.
“O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which killest the prophets, and stonest them that are sent unto thee; how often would I have gathered thy children together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings, and ye would not!”
*Repentance is always met with resistance.
*Lots of people like the idea of salvation but most people reject the repentance required for salvation.
*Repentance is more than tears over sin its turning from sin.
*Repentance is more than a onetime action or a prayer you pray but a life of continual confession and change as you follow Christ.
*Once saved forever following.
*Baptism is an outward expression of an inward change that publically declares you have decided to follow Jesus!
II. A PICTURE OF THE EARLY CHURCH
*Our mission never changes but our methods do.
1. Continually pray.
2. Consistently preach and teach God’s Word.
*We are to be more than just a Bible believing Church we are to be a Bible living church.
3. Come together for praise and worship of God.
4. Contribute to the mission of God.
5. Commit to fellowshipping with one another.
*The closer you get to God the closer you will want to get to your brothers and sisters.
*A Spirit filled church is marked by generosity, gladness, giving and growth!
1. Have I repented and turned to Christ for salvation?
2. Have I been Scripturally Baptized?
3. Am I A Church Member
4. Am I consistently praying, praising, and preaching?
5. Am I currently involved in making and teaching disciples?
6. Am I a generous contributor to the mission of the church?
7. Am I committed to fellowshipping with my church family?
Quote: “God doesn’t have a mission for His church; He made a church for His mission.”
I. THE COMING OF THE SPIRIT
*Pentecost did not take place because the people were praying, Pentecost happened because God was fulfilling His promise!
A. The Sound of The Spirits Coming
“Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother's womb, and be born? Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again. The wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou hearest the sound thereof, but canst not tell whence it cometh, and whither it goeth: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.”
B. The Sight of The Spirts Coming
*A sure sign that we are filled with the Spirit is that we are proclaiming the name of Jesus.
Quote: “I set myself on FIRE, they come to watch me burn.” John Wesley
II. THE COMMOTION AND CONFUSION
III. THE CHARGE AND CHALLENGE
*God desires that all of His children declare the life changing Gospel message to those who are in need of the Saviour.
Quote: “If you have no wish to bring others to heaven, you are not going there yourself.” C. H. Spurgeon
Quote: “The church that does not evangelize will fossilize.” Oswald J. Smith
Quote: “It is not our strength we want. It is not our work to make them believe. That is the work of the Spirit. Our work is to give them the Word of God. I cannot convert men; I can only proclaim the Gospel” D. L. Moody
*The persistence of prayer, the power of the Gospel, and the presence of the Spirit is what will bring transformation to people.
*Has the conviction of the Spirit caused me to cry out to God for salvation?
*Am I living under the control of the Spirit sharing and showing the Gospel?
*Waiting is a work of God’s grace in our lives helping us to grow in Him.
1. God’s delays are not always God’s denials.
2. Waiting is never wasted time when you’re resting on a promise.
3. Waiting is not inactivity but it is often preparation.
4. Remain faithful while you are waiting.
I. SUBMIT TO THE WORD
“And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.”
*We must go to them because they are not going to come to us!
A. Sharing The Gospel Comes With A Price
*The Gospel spreads through surrender and sacrifice.
*Pick of Adonirham Judson and wife Ann
Quote: “There is no success without sacrifice. If you succeed without sacrifice it is because someone has suffered before you. If you sacrifice without success it is because someone will succeed after you.” Adonirham Judson
Luke 9:23, 24
“And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: but whosoever will lose his life for my sake, the same shall save
B. Sharing The Gospel Requires Concentrated Prayer
Quote: “If you are not praying, then you are quietly confident that time, money, and talent are all you need in life. You’ll always be a little too tired, a little too busy to pray. But if your life Jesus, you realize you can’t do life on your own, then no matter how busy, no matter how tired you are, you will find the time.” (no pick needed) Paul Miller
II. HEED THE WARNING
*Judas represents the many who are around Jesus and like Jesus but Jesus is not in them and they don’t really love Him.
*People who really love Jesus will love His church and serve others.
Quote: “The motto of every missionary, whether preacher, printer, or schoolmaster, ought to be "Devoted for life." Adoniram Judson
*Our church is a part of Christ’s continuing work here on Earth.
Quote: “God’s mission is what fills the gap between the scattering of the nations in Genesis 12 and the healing of the nations in Revelation 22. God’s worldwide mission defines every believer’s primary responsibility until Jesus returns.” C. Wright
*The church is not some place we attend the church is a movement that we belong to.
*The problem for many churches today is that they have lost a sense of mission or have exchanged the mission for something else.
*Logos-we must have the Word of Christ in us
*Ethos-the inner reality for what we proclaim
*Pathos-a passion for Christ
I. EMBRACE THE COMMANDS OF CHRIST
*The mission of Christ to His church is to make new converts not convince people to our opinions.
I Corinthians 1:21-24
“For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe. For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom: But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks foolishness; But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.”
II. EMPOWERMENT COMES THROUGH THE SPIRIT
*We must constantly tap into the Spirits power enabling us to continue in the mission.
*Jesus has not called His church into the entertainment or education business but to evangelize!
*The explosive power of the Spirit is never fully experienced until we are witnessing for Christ.
III. ENGAGE IN THE MISSION
*Jesus is not asking us to do the work for Him but rather to join Him in the work!
Challenge: Am I continuing in the work or have I become complacent?
Quote: Complacency in the Christian life always points to being out of touch with the urgency of the message and blind to the glory of Christ. J.D. Greear
*We must continue exalting the name of Christ as we witness and worship.