In this episode Pastor John returns to Joseph as the focus of the story in an exploration of his trials and successes in Egypt. He explores, in particular, the conflict with Potiphar's wife and how Christians often face trials and unfair affliction, but, as it says in Romans 8:39, "What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?" Passages covered are Genesis 39.
In this first episode of a series on the story of Joseph, we see how God uses imperfect people and difficult situations for his glory and to help his people. From the sermon: "God uses men and women where they are in their circumstances to accomplish his purposes. God can also guide
people into making decisions and taking actions that suit his purposes." Passages covered are Genesis 37:2-22 with references from elsewhere.
Last time, we examined the question of what it means to be a disciple of Jesus.This week, the question we will explore is, what are disciples of Jesus to do? Pastor John explores what Christians are commanded to do in their lives - not to be saved, but to serve the Lord. Whether in our work, our family lives, or with our enemies, God commands us to aim high, to pray, to love Him, and to love one another.
Pastor John explores the three "C"s of what it means to be a disciple: It begins by hearing Christ's call and positively responding. Then, one considers what it means to be a follower of Christ: both the joy and the difficulty. Finally, a disciple commits to taking up his or her cross and following Christ.
When was the last time you thought hard about what happened before creation existed? And how often do you think about what happens after we pass from this world? Pastor John explores the terror and the power of what it means to live in fear of the Lord. Passages from throughout scripture are explored.
These are some final thoughts on the entire chapter dealing with servitude, wealth, and adherence to scripture. Paul addresses how those who serve others should behave towards their masters. While he details it in the context of slavery, this is applicable in workplaces and other hierarchies today as well. He also covers a Christian attitude towards wealth and warns against itinerant preachers who stray from the Word of God - equally as applicable today as it was then.
In chapter 6, Paul gives practical advice to Timothy on how to treat different members of the church family appropriately. Here we get a window into how the church is to support and provide for both younger and older widows as well as church elders. Verses covered are 1 Timothy 1-21.
We must never forget that we are in a spiritual battle. It is a situation that our western thinking makes difficult for us western Christians to grasp, because we have been conditioned to think scientifically and such thinking is founded in, and focussed on, the material world not the spiritual world. Perhaps that is one reason why we have trouble understanding how some can abandon the faith because of demonic influence. Paul speaks of that very problem in 1 Timothy 4 as he outlines for Timothy how to deal with false teachers who fall under the influence of the lies of demons.