SERMON STARTERS • April - June

In this section, we will provide 10 Sermon Starter Ideas from each week’s Disciple’s Bible Reading Plan. May the Holy Spirit direct you, Pastor, and inspire you as to what He wants your people to hear from Him this week.

These are simply ideas to get your own creative mind working.  God will guide you and lead you — Count on it and count on Him!

WEEK 13  •  April 1-7, 2019

John 11-17

 

1. John 11:1-46
This is one of the greatest sections of Scripture in the whole Bible!  This portion of God’s Word contains the fabulous story of the Raising of Lazarus from the dead.  Jesus is confronted by both Mary and Martha and they say the exact same words:  “Lord, if You had been here, my brother would not have died!”  While this is a profound statement of great faith, at the same time, they are essentially saying:  “Where have you been?  We sent You word in plenty of time.  You could have saved him!  This is Your fault!  If only You had been here my brother would not have died!  Why didn’t You come when we called for You?!”  No doubt, Jesus loved these women tremendously.

 

They were among His dearest friends and associates on earth.  But Jesus never did anything until He heard first from His Father.  So, He had waited … agonizingly for days, until ABBA said “Go!”  Jesus loved His Father so much that He would wait and allow His heart to be broken and He would allow these two sisters to have their hearts broken — all for the greater glory of God.  So, He waits until Lazarus is dead and in the tomb for 4 days!  Jesus will allow our hearts to be broken and He will sometimes “disappoint” us — in the short haul — to allow us to go through a greater miracle!  This would be the greatest miracle that Jesus did in His lifetime before the cross — next to His own Resurrection.  Jesus had to wait and wait and wait … on the Father’s Word so that the Lord would receive the maximum glory!  Think about it, Jesus could have healed Lazarus from long-distance when He first heard that Laz was sick and dying.  But, He waits on ABBA until Lazarus is good and dead … and then He only goes to the ladies in Bethany under the direction of the Father.  Are you willing to let Jesus break your heart … for His greater glory?

 

2. John 11:40-44

Only Jesus can raise the dead.  But notice that after Lazarus walks out of that tomb wrapped like a mummy Jesus gives “the church,” that is His Disciples and followers, a command, “Unbind him, and let him go!”  Only Jesus can give a person new life.  But Jesus commands His people, that’s us, to unbind folks and let them go free.  So many people coming to Christ have new life in Him but they are still bound by past paradigms, curses, ignorant and limited thinking, bad habits and vices and they need to be delivered and set free.  This is our job and our high honor!  Jesus gives them new spiritual life.  They are on their way to heaven but they are still “bound.”  We need to cooperate with Jesus and in His Name and by His Power, His Blood, His Spirit, and His Word — set them free!

 

3. John 12:1-8 

Here we have the beautiful story of Mary of Bethany’s extravagant, over-the-top, magnanimous, expensive worship of Jesus!  As always happens when somebody is incredibly passionate for Jesus and exuberant and beyond imagination expressive in their worship and adoration of Jesus — the “religious” crowd will criticize and judge them!  Mary doesn’t care what anybody thinks.  She anoints Him anyway with the most expensive perfume!  The price of that perfume was approximately the equivalent to a working man’s wage for one year of hard labor.  She wipes His feet with her hair!  The smell of the perfume that was now on Jesus now is on her!  You love on Jesus long enough and passionate enough and His scent, what is on Him, will be on you!  The perfume with which she anointed Jesus was now on her!  His “anointing” was on her! Have you ever loved Jesus to the point where other “churchians” criticized you?  Is your Jesus worth the criticism?  What do you think?  How can we worship Jesus with extravagant, sacrificial, costly love and adoration?  Do you think you could ever “out-love” Mary in your passion for Jesus?  Would you like to try?

 

4. John 13:1-17 

Jesus washes the feet of His Disciples in the upper room.  What a scene!  The God of the Universe strips down to His underwear and crawls around on the dirty floor washing 12 pair of stinky, dirty feet!  It would have taken our Lord at least an hour to do this most menial task.  I have washed feet before.  It takes a good 5 minutes at least to wash 2 feet.  Jesus did this for all 12 Disciples — including Judas!  12 X 5 minutes = one hour!  Our Lord is just hours away from the cross yet He takes an hour to lovingly, tenderly, gently wash the feet of the very men who would disappoint Him that night in the garden when they would fall asleep in prayer meeting.  These guys would all run and desert Him.  One would betray Him to His killers.  Another would deny that he even knew Him 3 times before daybreak.  None of them would believe that He told the truth when He had prophesied that He would rise from the dead on the third day!  They had argued that very night as to who among them was the greatest — each nominating themselves!  They were still a mess in so many ways, yet our Lord loves them by serving them as the lowest slave.  What condescension!  What lowering of Himself!  What humility!  What a Savior we have!  Then He tells us to do the same kind of lowly service to one another.  When will we obey Him?

 

5. John 13:34-35

Now, Jesus gives them His NEW COMMANDMENT!  He tells them that they need to agape (love) one another just exactly as He has agaped them!  Then He gives the whole world the right to judge whether or not we are really His Disciples — based on our Christlike agape for one another.  How had Jesus loved (agaped) those Disciples?  He had just demonstrated it … on the floor, in His “shorts” washing their stinky, dirty feet.  He was about to die on the cross for them!  He had loved them beyond words for 3 years or so.  They knew how He had agaped them.  Now they have the new standard.  The Old Covenant commanded us to love our neighbor as ourselves. (Leviticus 19:18)  But this was higher, deeper and greater.  

 

Multiple choice quiz:  Jesus loved His Disciples…

A.  Less than He loved Himself (not even up to the Old Covenant standard)

B.  Exactly the same as He loved Himself (the Old Covenant) 

C.  More than He loved Himself

 

My answer is “C.” He loved those guys MORE than He loved Himself.  

 

And this is the standard in His New Covenant.  We are to agape each other  JUST LIKE JESUS LOVES US!!  How has Jesus loved you?  That is how He expects us to agape one another!  What a new commandment!  Lord help us to truly agape You enough to obey You (John 14:15, 21, 23; 15:9-10, 14) and please, Merciful Jesus, help us to truly AGAPE ONE ANOTHER LIKE YOU AGAPE US!

 

6. John 14:12-14

Do you really believe these words of Jesus?  Most church attenders don’t!  If you believe that Jesus words in John 3:16 are true.  Why do we struggle to believe Jesus’ words about doing His works and even “greater works?”  The same word “believe” is used in both verses.  We believe that Jesus never said anything that He didn’t mean.  He cannot lie.  This is His destiny for us.  He wants and expects us to truly believe in Him and believe in His words … and to literally do the same works (miracles, healings, deliverances, resurrections, exorcisms, signs, wonders) that He did … and even greater works!  This is God’s call on your life!  Will you believe?  Will you obey?

 

7. John 15:1-27

These mighty words of Jesus echo down through the ages.  Every verse could result in 2-3 sermons!  Look at the following and let the Holy Spirit lead you in to preaching what His people need to hear this week:

    • John 15:2 - the power and purpose of the painful pruning that He lovingly puts us through.

    • Abiding in Jesus, His Word and His Love

    • “Apart from Me you can do nothing!”  John 15:5

    • Bearing much fruit for the glory of God and thus proving that we are His disciples   John 15:8

    • Jesus loves us as much as the Father loves Him!  Can you believe it?  John 15:9

 

And there are so many more great messages in these eternal words of Jesus in John 15!

 

8. If Jesus commands us to “abide in My love” and to “abide in His love” (Jesus speaking of the Father’s love - See John 15:9-10) then that must mean that it is possible NOT to abide in His love or the Father’s agape.  How do we abide in His agape?  How do we NOT abide in His agape.  His agape is constant, unconditional, and unchanging towards us— but whether or not we are abiding in His agape is another matter!  What a message this could be.  

 

9. John 16:23-24 contains some of the greatest prayer promises Jesus ever spoke.  Notice how Jesus wants us to ask in His Name so that we can get answers to our prayers and so that our Joy (His Joy according to John 15:11) will be made full!  Jesus Joy is joy beyond description or definition!  Jesus wants you to be so joyful now and to be enraptured in His joy for all eternity!  Preach on the lasting, permanent, full joy of Jesus and contrast it with the temporary, fleeting happiness that the world tries to offer us.  

 

10. John 17 gives us the great and majestic High Priestly Prayer of Jesus!  What a prayer!  We learn so much about Jesus and about the Trinity and their Unity from this awesome passage.  Again, there could be several sermons from each verse of this blessed chapter.  Key words in this passage include:  glory, believe, give, givest, Thy Name, sanctify, joy, one, unity, and agape among others.  Our agape and unity today is an answer to Jesus’ prayer in this chapter.  Do you think that Jesus is still praying this prayer? Notice in vs. 23 that Jesus declares that ABBA Father loves you and me as much as He loves Jesus!  Can you believe it?  If it wasn’t in the Bible I couldn’t and wouldn’t believe it!  But it is and so I believe it even though it staggers me beyond words.  Preach on!

 

 

WEEK 14  •  April 8-14, 2019

John 18-21 / Colossians 4 - 2 Thessalonians 1

 

We will complete the Gospels “sermon starter ideas” this week and we will move over and start sharing “sermon starter ideas” from the Epistles of the New Testament starting where we are in the weekly readings.

 

1. John 18:1-11

Here we see the arrest of Jesus.  The Greek words here indicate that this was a huge crowd that came to arrest Jesus.  There were probably 600+ heavily armed men that came to arrest one man.  Amazing!  Our Jesus is so powerful that all He has to say is: “I AM!”  (The “he” in vs. 5 is in italics which indicates that it is not in the original Greek) at the sound of His Name “I AM” the entire small army is smashed to the ground.  Nobody and nobody’s army could have arrested Jesus against His will.  Jesus lets them get up and then He allows them to arrest Him.  Our Lord is so incredibly powerful.  He could have instantly called 12 legions of angels.  There were 6,000 men to a legion!  That means Jesus could have called 72,000 angels to His aid instantly!  Remember how powerful even one of God’s holy angels are!  One angel in the Old Testament killed 185,000 Assyrians in one night!  At that rate 72,000 angels times 185,000 = 13.3 billion people that 72,000 could kill instantly.  All of these unbelievably powerful angels were at Jesus’ command.  Yet, He willingly goes to the cross and dies for us!  What a wonder He is!

 

2. John 19:25-27

Look at Jesus’ love and compassion for His dear Mother in her most awful hour of anguish as she witnesses the shameful, brutal murder of her first-born son!  Can you imagine her crushed broken heart!  Can you fathom the depths of her pain!  Simeon had promised this back in the Temple in Luke 2.  How many tears flooded her cheeks!  This was her boy!  In His dying breaths He tenderly cares for her and her future.  He entrusts His Beloved Disciple John with the life-long care of His precious Mom.  Think about that!  This was no small imposition!  John would take responsibility and care for her for the rest of her life!  What love and trust Jesus must have had for John … and John for Jesus … for this divine commitment to be made.  Jesus had four other brothers and at least two sisters He could have entrusted MaMa Mary to … but they weren’t at the cross like John was.  So, to His closest, most intimate Disciple Jesus gives the charge to take care of his Mother.  Can Jesus trust you with the loving, life-long care of His beloved family members?  Will you feed and care for His “sheep," “His baby lambs?” (See John 21:15-17)  

 

3. John 20:11-18 gives us the account of Mary Magdalene and her Precious Jesus on Resurrection morning.  What a tender moment!  Jesus has just arisen from the dead and from hell and He is on His way to the Father’s throne … and yet, He pauses on His journey to the mercy seat in Heaven to pour out His very Blood on it for us (could there be a more important mission than this?!)… for this little broken, broken hearted lady! Think of it! His beloved Mary Mag was hurting and crying at the tomb!  He had to go to her!  He stops His trip from hell to heaven to go and meet Mary and heal her broken heart by simply showing up and calling her name!  Everything changes when Jesus shows up and calls our name!  How much does our Jesus really love us?  His agape is unimaginable and unfathomable.  Praise His Name!  Praise His love!  Praise Him forever!

 

4. John 20:19-23

Can you grasp the almost unbelievable authority that Jesus invests in His Believers?  Look at what Jesus says here in these verses about forgiveness.  Can you wrap your brain around these phenomenal passages?  Can Jesus really mean it?  IF WE FORGIVE THE SINS OF ANY THEIR SINS HAVE BEEN FORGIVEN?!  WHAT?! AND IF WE DON’T FORGIVE — WHAT HAPPENS? Read what Jesus says happen when we don’t forgive and we retain the sins of others.  Preach on the incredible power and authority of forgiveness that Jesus has given to those of us who will someday rule and reign on His throne with Him!  Can you see how serious Not Forgiving is?  Jesus help us to be dispensers of His grace and forgiveness —which somehow allows God to forgive those we forgive!  What does it mean to “retain” the sins of another?  Check it out, Pastor!

 

5.  John 21:15-17 reveals the powerful conversation between Jesus and Peter after our Lord’s Resurrection.  To fully grasp what is going on here you need to know the meaning of two Greek words.  They are two different words that are translated “love” in English:

 

1. “Agape” = God’s kind of love that is unconditional, totally unselfish and it is the Fruit of the Spirit.  It is not dependent upon the response of the other person.  It just gives and gives with no regard for anything coming back from the one being agaped.  This is God love.  This is the kind of love that God has for Jesus and for us and for the world.  This is the highest, purest kind of love in the universe.  This is the kind of love that God commands us to have towards Him and towards each other! (See 1 Corinthians 13 for a description of Christlike Agape Love.)

 

2. “Phileo” = Best friend kind of love.  This kind of love gives and takes.  This is the kind of love that you have for someone who loves you back and you really, really like them.  You enjoy them because they really, really like you back!  This is human love at its best.  This is a lower kind of love than agape!

 

So, Jesus confronts Peter and asks him if he agapes Him.  Peter, who is still painfully aware that he had denied Jesus three times on that awful night responds and doesn’t use the word agape.  He answers:  “You know that I phileo You!  I really like you, Jesus!”  Then Jesus again asks Peter if he agapes Him.  Once again Peter responds “Well, I phileo You, Jesus!  I really like You a lot!”  The third time Jesus doesn’t use the word agape.  He drops down to the lower level of love (phileo) word that Peter is using:  “Do you even phileo Me?”  Peter is broken.  He says:  “Lord, You know that I phileo you!”  Amazingly, Jesus doesn’t rebuke Peter that he is not able to come up to His agape level of love yet.  And even more amazing Jesus commits to this imperfect lover (phileo love - not yet agape love) the care and feeding of His “sheep” and “lambs.”  Isn’t that mind-boggling that Jesus wants to use people like us (with our less than perfect agape love) to care for His sheep-like people?

 

At this point in our reading journey we are finished with the Gospels.  These “sermon starter ideas” will pick up with where we are in our reading of the rest of the New Testament for this week.

 

6. 1 Thessalonians 1:10 mentions that our Lord Jesus will deliver us from the “wrath that is to come.”  What do you think that Paul is talking about?  Is this the wrath during the Tribulation period?  Is it God’s wrath on Judgment Day?  What do you think the Holy Spirit meant when He inspired Paul to write this?  Lead your people in praise that Jesus “delivers us from the wrath that is to come!”  Challenge your people to do whatever they can in intercession, love and witnessing to deliver others from the wrath that is sure to come!

 

7. 1 Thessalonians 2:1-12 has Paul speaking in the warmest familial terms to describe his love and tender care for the Thessalonians.  He likens his love and compassion for them in terms of a nursing mother and a gentle, loving father.  He speaks of his fond affection of them and that they were very dear to him.  He says that he constantly gives God thanks for them.  Paul really loved these precious Christians.  This gives us a godly pattern to emulate as we disciple our baby believers.  Preach on the tender care of fellow Christians.  We desperately need to agape one another like Paul loved these folks.

 

8. 1 Thessalonians 3:9-13 here we see Paul’s powerful prayers for these blessed Christians.  Day and night Paul continued his mighty intercessions for these folks.  Paul’s prayer life and his prayers provide us with a tremendous model and example for us and our prayers for one another.  Preach on the vital necessity of Christians interceding for one another as Paul and Jesus prayed for their Disciples.  Notice what Paul prays for in vs. 13.  You could preach an entire message on this verse alone!  Explore with your people what it means to be “unblamable in holiness before our God and Father…”

 

9. 1 Thessalonians 4:1-7 and 5:23-24 are tremendous holiness passages.  Paul clearly tells us that sanctification is God’s will for us!  Preach on the holiness without which no one will see the face of God! (Hebrews 12:14 and Matthew 5:8)  Emphasize the fact that Jesus didn’t have to die to forgive us — since He forgave people of their sins BEFORE HE WENT TO THE CROSS — but according to Hebrews 13:12 He had to die to sanctify us!  No sin will enter heaven.  It is truly “holiness or hell!”  Your people need to know and believe this!

 

10. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

These are my “life verses.”  I love them because they cover all things I will ever face.  It is always God’s Will for us to:  Rejoice always — anyways!  Pray all the time without ceasing — anyways!  And to give thanks in all things all the time — anyways!  I call this the “Tripod of Triumph!”  With God’s help you can do this!  You will always “land on your spiritual feet” no matter what Satan, demons, sinners, and life throws at you if you will always do these three things. They are always the Will of God for you to do!  These three powerful commands from the Living God will hold you steady and victorious no matter what!  God loves it when you do these three things and He honors such faith! 

 

 

 

WEEK 15  •  April 15-21, 2019

2 Thessalonians 2 - 1 Timothy 5

1. 2 Thessalonians 2:1-12

This mysterious passage is all about the Anti-Christ who is coming for sure.  Pastor, have you ever taught on this coming world dictator?  Do you think God might want His people to know anything about this demon possessed, evil, murdering maniac — if not, why do you think that the Lord would devote so much ink in His Book to this mighty “man of lawlessness” including prominent chapters in Revelation, Daniel, this chapter and other portions of the Bible.  Would your people be able to recognize him from Scripture if he began to move on the world stage tomorrow?

 

 

2. 2 Thessalonians 2:13

Look at this powerful holiness passage!  We are saved through sanctification!  Pastor, do your people know how important sanctification is?!  It truly is not optional!  Jesus wants to save us through sanctification!  God has chosen us from the beginning for “salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and faith in the truth!”  Call your blessed people to this higher walk with God!  Are your people saved?  Are they sanctified?  Tell them how they can be sanctified.  Give them an opportunity to be graced with this phenomenal gift of God!

 

3. 2 Thessalonians 3:1-5

Once again we get insights into the priority of prayer in Paul’s life.  Here we see prayer requests from this mighty man of faith and prayer.  Paul wasn’t shy to ask his readers to pray for him regarding specific requests.  Pastor, you could preach on “How To Pray For Your Pastor” using the various prayer requests that Paul mentions in his epistles.  It is quite a powerful list! You can also preach on the fact that in vs. 3 God promises to strengthen and protect us from the evil one — that includes Satan, his demons, evil people and the Anti-Christ covered in chapter 2 of this book!  Praise the Lord that we can preach comfort to our people based on the promises of God to protect His people. (See Psalm 91! and Isaiah 54:17)

 

4. 1 Timothy 1:5

This mighty verse gives us the whole purpose of the Bible and all true Christian education and discipling.  Preach on these three mighty goals:

    • Agape from a pure heart!  (Your people need a pure heart — see the sermon starter above)

    • a good conscience - teach your people how they can live with a good, clean conscience

    • and a sincere faith (How do we get faith?  See Romans 10:17)

 

Pastor, you need to teach your people these three truths.  Then you need to train them in these three vital areas.  Finally, you need to “test” them in these three qualities.  If these are the three main areas and the goals of all of our instruction then how important are they?  How many people in your church are truly moving and growing in these three arenas.  Pastor, do you have any idea how many of your people are living out these three goals?  We have our work cut out for us!

 

5. 1 Timothy 1:17 is a great verse that praises some pretty phenomenal attributes and qualities of our Mighty Most High God and Father.  You could focus a whole series of sermons based on these aspects of our Awesome God.  Lead your people in focused praise and worship as you meditate and preach on these qualities mentioned here: eternal, immortal, invisible, the only God and other qualities worthy of worship including our God’s: beauty, size, power, agape love, power, wisdom, knowledge, omnipresence, omniscience, foreknowledge and so many other infinite, perfect attributes of our Blessed God!

 

6. 1 Timothy 2:1 begins with “First of all…” Paul is prioritizing what our prayer list should look like. Paul lists different kinds of prayer:  “entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings…”  Then Paul tells us who should be first on our prayer lists:  “for kings and all who are in authority…”  Encourage and challenge your people to pray for all those in authority which would include presidents, kings, governors, mayors, senators, representatives, judges, the police and other authorities.  Too many of us ignore Paul’s clear commands and priorities in prayer.  Lead your people in powerful intercessions for our leaders.

 

7. 1 Timothy 3:7 mentions an interesting and intriguing phrase: “the snare of the devil.”  This exact same phrase is used by Paul in 

2 Timothy 2:26.  The Holy Spirit could help you craft a great message on the following points:  What is the snare of the devil?  How do we fall into the snare of the devil?  How do we avoid the snares and traps of Satan?  How can we tell if we are already ensnared? What do we do when we are trapped in his snares (Again see 2 Timothy 2:26) How do we get set free of the snares of the enemy?  

 

8. 1 Timothy 3:16 is a great “hymn” of praise to our Mighty Lord Jesus the Christ!  You could preach a great Christ-honoring message using each phrase of this verse as a different point of praise to our Most Exalted King!

 

9. 1 Timothy 4:4-5 is an interesting passage.  Look at the freedom in Christ that we have in these verses.  Gratitude to God should be our constant refrain.  Notice that “nothing is to be rejected!”  Check out how the Word of God and prayer sanctifies everything that is not strictly forbidden in the New Testament.  You might explore, Pastor, in your sermon how the Word of God and prayer sanctifies anything and everything.  Verses 1-3 slam legalism and mere rule keeping.  Praise the Lord!

 

10. 1 Timothy 4:7 tells us to “discipline yourself for the purpose of godliness.”  Paul is clear and so is the rest of the scope of Scripture that while we are saved by grace and not our good works — yet there is no discipleship without discipline and there is no godliness or holiness without discipline, self-denial and self-control.  Godly discipline is in short supply in most of our churches in America today.  My wife literally put this verse on a poster and put it on the ceiling of our bedroom right over her side of the bed — in the hopes that it would motivate her to get up and get going on her morning disciplines!  Do you think that Paul was disciplined?  What do you think?  Was Jesus disciplined?  Do you want to be like Jesus or not?  It will take Holy Spirit inspired and empowered discipline to get up and pray and obey each day like Jesus did.  Aren’t you glad that Philippians 4:13 is still in force?!

 

11. 1 Timothy 4:12 contains a list of things that all of us should be an example in — including:  speech, conduct, agape love, faith and purity.  This verse is a challenge to all of us, isn’t it?  Maybe you could preach a sermon and as you teach on each point and explain it — then maybe, ask your people to call out the name of someone in your church who is an example of that particular good quality.  Can you imagine the encouragement that would be to the person whose name is called out regarding the fact that they are seen as an example by others in the church in that godly, Christlike quality?  

 

 

WEEK 16  •  April 22-28, 2019

1 Timothy 6 - Titus 2

 

1. 1 Timothy 6:2 finds Paul telling us to specifically teach and preach certain principles.  You might be surprised to go back into verses 1 and 2 of this chapter and see what unpopular-today principles Paul is talking about!  Then in verses 3 and 4 Paul tells us that anyone who doesn’t agree with these principles is definitely not a Christ follower.  Check it out!  There might be a powerful sermon in these few verses.  Ask the Holy Spirit if He might want you to teach and preach these godly principles.

 

2. 1 Timothy 6:9-11 and 17-19 gives us clear teachings about money and the love of money.  These verses give us God’s commands to those who are “rich.”  That would include most of the people in your church if you stacked up their wealth and resources against the wealth and resources of the rest of the world.  If your people have a refrigerator or a car they are in the top few percent of the world.  These instructions to the rich are pertinent and relevant to all of our people.  Pastor if you don’t talk to your people about money you are not loving them adequately.  Jesus spent a lot of his time talking about money.  Over one third of His parables had something to do with money and our resources.  Your people deserve to know what God has to say about money!  Preach these verses Pastor!

 

3. 2 Timothy 1:7 is a verse that we said as a congregation every Sunday at the church I pastored for 13 years in Anaheim, California. This is a verse that every Christian should know by heart!  Preach on this great verse.  GOD HAS NOT GIVEN US A SPIRIT OF FEAR!  Fear is never of the Lord!  Think of the 366 verses in the Bible that tell us to “fear not!”  Look what God has given us instead!  Power, Agape Love and Discipline or a Sound Mind!  This verse virtually preaches itself!  Preach this without fear Pastor!  

 

4. Look at 2 Timothy 1:14 “Guard through the Holy Spirit who dwells in us, the treasure which has been entrusted to you.”  Many of our listeners on Sunday mornings probably could not articulate exactly what “the treasure” is that has been entrusted to them.  If they don’t know what it is how can they possibly know how to guard it.  And on that point, how do we “guard” it anyway?  How do we guard something through the Holy Spirit.  Your people would probably benefit greatly from a sermon on this verse.  You could also talk about guarding our hearts as Proverbs commands us to do.  Preach on the the treasure we have in earthen vessels, Paul says, in 2 Corinthians 4:7, and preach on what it will take to guard that treasure!

 

5. 2 Timothy 2:2 is one of the greatest verses in the Bible on disciplemaking.  In this one verse we can find 4 spiritual generations:

1st generation = Paul writing this verse

2nd generation = Timothy receiving this letter

3rd generation = “faithful men who will be able to teach others”

4th generation = the “others” who will be taught by those faithful men!

 

Every Christian ought to be able to answer these 3 questions with the names of real people:

1. Who is discipling you?

Everybody needs to be coached and discipled by someone who is further down the road in their walk with Jesus than they are.

 

2. Who are you discipling?

Pastor please don’t say, “I disciple the whole church!”  Don’t make me come over to you and do some serious “laying on of hands” on you!  You can preach to thousands. You can lead your whole church.  But you can only focus and pour your life into a handful of people who you can listen to each week teaching them, training them personally and testing them to see if they are really getting what you are pouring into them.  

 

The basic principle of discipling as modeled by our Lord Jesus Christ is this:  “You spend more time with fewer people, but the right few people — for maximum impact!”

 

3. Who are your disciples discipling?

Most pastors never get to this third level.  We must make disciples who make disciples! Until our disciples are successfully making disciples — our job is nowhere close to being done!

 

6. 2 Timothy 2:10-13 speaks of a little known quality in modern “followers” of Jesus — and that is the issue of endurance.  How can we help our people grow in this vital area, Pastor?  Preach on the many verses on this matter of endurance that you can find in any concordance.  Look up the words “endure,” “endurance,” “long-suffering,” “steadfast” and other similar words.  What rewards and promises are made to those who will endure?  What happens to those who don’t endure?  This is a serious matter.  If persecution broke loose tomorrow in America against Christians and believers all over our land were losing their homes, their businesses and being rounded up and tortured for their faith — how many people in your church do you think would truly ENDURE to death?  We must prepare our people to suffer for Jesus and endure to the end and beyond!

 

7. 2 Timothy 2:15

What a command!  What a challenge!  You can preach on what it means to really be “diligent.”  Also you can preach on what it takes to be “approved to God.” Present this as one of the highest goals we should have in our life.  Our Lord God agapes everybody — but not everybody is “approved to God.”  Your people deserve to know what it takes to have God Almighty approve them.  What is God’s measuring stick?  What must we do to be truly approved by God with an “A++” grade?  This verse is so loaded!  Other key words or phrases in this passage that you can shed light on include:

      • “workman” - God is calling us all to be His “workmen.”  There is real work - in many cases, real hard work that He wants us to do! But we can count on His real help for the real work He calls us to do!                               See Ephesians 2:8-10

      • “who does not need to be ashamed” (which obviously indicates that there will be workman who are ashamed on Judgment Day!)

      • “handling accurately the word of truth” Lay out for your blessed beloved people what that phrase means.

 

8. 2 Timothy 2:24-26

This is such a great passage for all who are in the ministry of our Lord. First of all, the actual Greek word for “bond-servant” is the word “doulos” which means “slave.” We are His love slaves! Slaves have no voice, no vote, no time or money to call their own.  Their whole point of existence is to help, serve, please and bless their Master. Their opinions and will do not matter. They must OBEY their Master. Paul, Peter, John, Jude and others in the New Testament saw as one of their highest joys to be called a “slave of Christ!”

 

They reveled in their glorious status to be the slave of the King of Kings! In the Roman empire of the 1st century over half of the population of that great empire were slaves! Probably a majority of the early church were slaves.  In that day, a slaves’ total status and self-worth came from who their master was. A governor’s slave or a senator’s slave were very highly regarded and honored by the status of their master. The emperor’s trusted slaves were honored with unimaginable glory and honor when they walked the streets of Rome. But, Paul and the other New Testament writers of the epistles considered it such an unspeakable honor to be the slave of the Most High Jesus Christ! 

 

So, here in this passage we find out what the Lord’s slaves were to be like! This is such a significant passage as it lays out the attitudes and actions of one of the Lord’s slaves. Everybody in the ministry ought to meditate on this great little paragraph and line their lives up to these high and vital standards. These verses describe a Christlike minister of the Gospel.

 

9. 2 Timothy 3:1-5

Here Paul talks to us about what the last days will be like.  We are definitely in the “last days.” These verses will preach themselves with brief understandable definitions that you provide for your people as you preach/teach your way through this list of attitudes, qualities and actions of the people who live in the last days. You can zero in on vs. 5. So many of our churches in America hold to “a form of godliness although they have denied its power.” Pastor, is that your church? Call them into the very real power of God.

 

Without God’s power we will not be able to stand and be steadfast in these tough days ahead that we will live through.  These things should not catch us by surprise!  We should be on guard in our own hearts regarding these things.  For example, are your people “lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God?” (vs. 4)  What does a lover of pleasure look like?  What does a person who is a lover of God look like?  How do they differ?  What are the qualities, characteristics, attitudes, habits and actions of a lover of God? There is great preaching material in these 5 verses.

 

10. 2 Timothy 3:16-17

This is one of the greatest passages in all of Scripture on Scripture!  Look how “profitable” all of Scripture is for all of God’s people.  This is a good way to encourage your people in the daily reading and meditation on God’s eternal Word!  Point out how profitable God’s Word really is!  Explain what the following words mean in today’s modern vernacular:  “teaching”  “reproof”  “correction”  “training in righteousness”  “adequate”  “equipped for every good work.”  Without being legalistic call and challenge your people to a greater devotion and discipline to the daily reading, study and meditation on God’s Word!  Remind them of the great promises of Joshua 1:8; Psalm 1:1-3; and James 1:21-27 for those who will meditate day and night on God’s mighty Word!  Praise His Word!

WEEK 17  •  May 1-7, 2019

Titus 3 - Hebrews 5

 

1. Titus 3:4-8

This is a great salvation passage!  Praise the Lord for the truths found in this section of Scripture!  There are 4-5 great messages that you could preach on from this passage.  Every phrase and word deserves treatment.  Your people would greatly benefit from these amazing truths.  This is a parallel passage to the great Ephesians 2:8-10 words of our Lord through the quill of Paul. Have fun with this message!  There should be no doubt in your people’s minds about what is involved in our salvation and how do we become saved after you take them through this POWERFUL Presentation of the Good News of our salvation in Christ!

 

2. The Book of Philemon is only one chapter long but your people will benefit from a packed sermon from this personal letter of Paul to his dear brother and friend Philemon.  There are so many principles of principled Christian living jammed into these few verses.  We see Paul’s tremendous agape for both Philemon and the runaway-slave-turned-repentant- Christian Onesimus.  What a treatise in a world where over half the population of the Roman empire were slaves!  Paul, somehow is able to convince Onesimus to RETURN to his master Philemon!  What kind of loving influence did Paul wield for Jesus!  What kind of true repentance (change of mind) does Onesimus demonstrate to return to his master?  Issues of authority and submission to authority are raised and addressed in this great little book.  Paul dealt with these topics in Romans 13:1-10; Titus 3:1-8; 1 Timothy 6:1-7; Romans 12:9-17 and other passages.

 

3. The Book of Hebrews is all about the supremacy of Jesus Christ.  The very first words of the first chapter of this mighty book remind us that Jesus our Lord is the “exact representation of His nature.”  As you preach and teach through Hebrews pound home the truth that Jesus is greater, better, and higher than any other.  He is greater than angels, Moses, all the prophets, every hero of the Old Testament, and He alone is worthy of all of our love, allegiance, and worship!  Read Hebrews 1:1-14 slowly and prayerfully and allow the Lord to bless you afresh with the reality of how truly great and SUPREME Jesus the Messiah is!

 

4. Hebrews teaches us some amazing things about ANGELS!  Preaching on angels is fascinating for your people.  Thank God for His powerful, almost unbelievably powerful angels.  Many ignorant-of-the- Bible Christians today think that when they die they will become angels!  Tell your people that they really do not want to become an angel!  God has destined us for the very throne of Christ!  (See Revelation 2-3)  In fact, 1 Corinthians 6:3 tells us that you and I will literally judge angels!  Isn’t that amazing!  Praise God!  Hebrews 1:4 teaches us that Jesus is “much better than the angels!”

 

Hebrews 1:14 informs us that angels are our servants!  If you inherit salvation as this verse indicates you also inherit angelic servants!  You don’t want to become an angel.  They are a special, powerful, precious group or “species” of God’s creation and they render almost unbelievably wonderful service to us — but you are much more graced than any angel!  Look at Hebrews 2:16 this little known verse tells us that “For assuredly He does not give help to angels, but He gives help to the descendant of Abraham!”  Child of God, you are a holy, son or daughter of Abraham because of the Blood Covenant of Jesus the Lord! (See Galatians 3, Romans 2:28-29) You have been placed in the family of Abraham.

 

You inherit the blessings of Abraham!  Wow! You are a descendant of Abraham and God promises you help that He does not give to His mighty angels!  Hebrews 1:7 blesses us with the truth that angels are His ministers of fire!  But, you are not an angel!  You are much higher than angels!  Jesus did not shed His Blood for one single angel. But He did shed His Blood for you!  No angel will sit on Christ’s throne with Him — but Child of God, Child of Abraham — you will! Praise His Name! Thank God for His angels and their thrilling ministry to us! But thank God that you are much higher and much better than angels! Wow! Think of it!

 

5. Hebrews 2:14-15 are among my favorite verses in the whole Bible.  This powerful section reminds us that Satan was rendered totally powerless at the cross! (See Colossians 2:13-15)  Praise the Blood of Jesus!  Praise our Great God!  Praise the Lamb of God!  Hallelujah!  Jesus has delivered us from Satan and his lies.  Jesus has powerfully delivered us from the fear of death and from the slavery to that fear!  Brother or Sister Pastor if you can’t preach with power, anointing, joy, passion, excitement and great enthusiasm from these two verses you need to check your spiritual pulse and see if you are alive or not!  Your people will find great encouragement from these packed verses!

 

6. Hebrews 3:13 give us an amazing reality and command.  We are to encourage (give courage) to each other every single day!  Think about how many verses tell us that there is something that we MUST do every single day!  There are a few verses … that specifically tell us that we must do certain things DAILY … but not many!  But, here we find one of those great DAILY COMMANDS!  God knows that every single one of us needs a strong dose of daily encouragement!  And He tells us that we are to encourage each other every single day!  Everybody you know desperately needs encouragement!  And look what this verse declares.  Our daily encouragement will literally and actually be a deterrent to others being “hardened by the deceitfulness of sin!”  Preach on this marvelous reality and give your people examples of how they can truly encourage each other today!

 

7. Hebrews 3:18-4:11 speaks extensively about the “rest” indeed the “sabbath rest for the people of God.”  Your busy, harried, hassled, stressed out people need to hear about the rest that God has for His people.  What kind of rest is God talking about here?  How can your people experience that rest now?  Remember Jesus’ great, comforting words about “rest” and “rest for your souls” in Matthew 11:28-30?  Preach on rest.  Be an example, Pastor, for your people in this vital area that is so neglected in today’s crazy world.  Do you regularly “Sabbath?”  Do your people weekly break the 4th commandment?  This is a powerful truth that God wants you to preach on regularly.  Your people desperately need to enter the rest that God wants us to have!

 

8. Hebrews 4:12-13 contains some of the greatest truths about God’s Word!  Each phrase is just loaded with divine truth!  Is God’s Word living and active in your people’s daily lives?  Is it piercing to the deepest parts of their lives?  Is it truly judging the thoughts and intentions of their hearts? You cannot overstate or over-preach the importance of God’s Word for your people.

 

Notice the awe inspiring reality of vs. 13!  He sees it all!  Your people need to have the holy, healthy fear of offending the One who sees everything!  He is watching and weighing every thought, every word, every TV program we watch, everything we look at on our computers … every thing!  He sees it all!  Mercy, Lord Jesus!!  Each Sunday we get one week closer to the day when your beloved people will give an accounting for everything to this ONE WHO SEES ALL!  Pastor, you have the incredible privilege and awesome and fearsome responsibility of preparing your people for Judgment Day!!  These passages will help you instill an honest, true, “Judgment Day Honesty,” fear of the Lord in the people you love the most!  He sees it all and we will answer for it all!  This is no light or laughing matter.  Most of our people that we preach to are truly NOT READY to stand before the Most High God and give an accounting for their lives!  Help them, Pastor!  This is a part of your high calling!

 

9. Hebrews 4:14-16

Don’t these verses just thrill your heart?  What a marvelous, precious, understanding High Priest that we have in Jesus our God!!  We truly can come boldly with confidence into the Most Holy Place in the universe — that is, the very Throne Room of our King of Kings and Lord of Lords!  And we can confidently, boldly, bravely draw near to the Mercy Seat of Christ and find grace, mercy and help in our times of need!  What a joy it is to preach with passion these great verses!  What an unspeakable and immeasurable privilege and honor and responsibility it is that we can PRAY BEFORE THE BLOOD SPRINKLED MERCY SEAT OF JESUS!  Preach it, Pastor!  Preach it!

 

10. Hebrews 5:7-9 reminds us that Jesus prayed with passion!  He cried out in prayer!  He cried out in supplications! (which, by the way, means, “fervent begging!”)  He cried out with “loud crying and tears.”  If you want to be like Jesus you will have to pray like Jesus did!  These verses tell us how Jesus prayed.  Dozens and dozens of times in Scripture God commands us to cry out to Him in prayer!  Jesus did!  And so did, Esther, Moses, David, Paul, Isaiah, Elijah, Elisha, and virtually so did everybody in the Bible who got through in their prayers to the Living God!

 

Then vs. 8-9 tells us that Jesus learned obedience from the things which He suffered.  Hebrews 2:10 shockingly informs us that perfect Jesus was “perfected” through suffering!  Is that amazing that Jesus had to literally learn obedience?  And the tool that the Loving Father used to teach Jesus obedience and to perfect Him — was the tool of suffering!  And that is the same tool that God will use on you and your people. Your people need to have a proper biblical theology of the gift of suffering that God allows and sometimes causes to perfect us!  (See James 1:2-4 and so many other passages!)

 

That is a part of your job, Pastor, to prepare your people to suffer through great sorrow … with tears of brokenness and loss and … with tears of joy that Jesus will perfect them and teach them obedience through it all!  Then, it will be your inestimable privilege to walk with your people through unimaginable sorrow and suffering and weep with them as the sorrow God allows to come into their lives perfects them and makes them more and more like their Lord Jesus!  What a calling you have, Pastor!

 

 

WEEK 18  •  May 8-14, 2019

Hebrews 6-12

 

1. Hebrews 6:1-2 gives us a short list of what the author to Hebrews tells us is the “elementary teachings about the Christ.”  Pastor, honestly look at this list and evaluate how effectively you have taught your people these elementary teachings about Jesus.  Do your people have a true biblical view on these basic, elementary theological truths which include:

      • repentance (which means “change your mind”) from dead works

      • faith toward God

      • instruction about washings

      • laying on of hands

      • the resurrection of the dead

      • eternal judgment

How knowledgable are your people in these basic themes?  If they are lacking then you have your teaching/preaching work cut out for you.  

 

2. Hebrews has many thrilling truths to teach us, but it also has some chilling truths we must believe and reckon with — and we must make sure that our people know these profound and at points frightening realities.  Hebrews 6:4-6 is one of those awe-full passages that our people must understand.  What a warning about back-sliding!  Think, meditate, study and wait on the Lord about how you should preach these verses.  They are way to powerful to ignore!  God will help you to teach these tough truths!  Pastor you love your people enough to speak the truth in broken-hearted love about these warnings from God, don’t you?!  Your people cannot afford to NOT KNOW these life-shaking concepts and true truths!

 

3. Hebrews 6:18 assures that in a day when virtually every politician, every salesman, every advertiser, every media outlet, every employer … lies … aren’t you grateful that your God cannot lie!  “it is impossible for God to lie!”  Praise our Truth Telling God!  He cannot lie!  Call your people to speak the truth in love (Ephesians 4:15; 4:25-32) and to never lie because as the Word says and as we tried to teach our children “You lie, then you die, then you fry!”  Preach on Truth!  Jesus is the TRUTH!  Praise the Truth of God!  Remind your people, who are all weary of the lies of the world, that God hears every lie.  And our Lord expects us to live lives with no lies!  While it is impossible for God to lie … it is impossible for the “father of lies” to NOT lie!  Examine “The Lies Satan Tries.”  Expose your people to his insidious, diabolical lies.  Tell the truth to your people about the lies they hear everyday and the lies that so many tell and call them to spotless, crystal pure truth telling themselves!

 

4. Hebrews 7:16 talks about “the power of an indestructible life!”  What a phrase!  What a truth!  What a possibility for each of us because of the Blood of Jesus, the power of His Name, the Spirit of our Christ, and the matchless Word of God!  This is a great verse to use when you are preaching the memorial service of a great saint of God who has gone on to glory.  They may have died physically but they are truly living out this verse they are living in the eternal life of God … because they are living the power of an indestructible life!  Praise the Lord!  What a fantastically wonderful reality!  Brother or Sister Pastor you are living out with great effectiveness by the power of the Great God Who raised Jesus from the dead — “the power of an indestructible life!”  Think of it!  Indestructible!  Praise the Mighty One who lives inside of you and renders you —

INDESTRUCTIBLE!!  He was indestructible and so are you!

 

5. Hebrews 7-10 covers the majestic theme of our Most High - High Priest our Lord YESHUA HAMASHIACH (Jesus the Christ)!  Preach on the great themes of these chapters.  Assure your precious people that their High Priest is praying and interceding for them day and night! (Hebrews 7:25-26)  There are so many great concepts in these 4 chapters.  You could preach a three month sermon series from these pages of Scripture on the High Priestly Ministry of our Lord Jesus!  These are some of the most profound truths about the present ministry of our Lord that you will find anywhere in the Bible.  You and your people will grow so much in the knowledge and love of our Lord as you focus on the Phenomenal High Priest that we have in our Blessed Jesus!

 

6. Hebrews 8:6-13 speaks of the new, better covenant that we have in Christ!  This could be a great sermon contrasting the old blood covenant of the Old Testament with the brand new Blood Covenant that we are in —in Jesus!  Look at what God promises us in the old covenant and then layer on top of that the great new promises of the new Blood Covenant with Jesus!  It is all about the Blood and it is all about Covenant.  Have fun teaching and preaching on the Better Covenant that the Book of Hebrews is all about!

 

7. Hebrews 9:1-22 reminds us of the great Tabernacle of Worship in the Old Testament then the author to Hebrews transitions and begins to write about the TABERNACLE in heaven!  You can preach on the Blood of Jesus.  Look at verses 13-22, read them carefully, prayerfully and slowly.  Let the Holy Spirit blow over you and help you craft a sermon on what the Blood of Jesus actually does for us!  I can’t think of a more exciting concept than the eternal Blood Covenant that we are in forever because of Jesus!

 

8. Hebrews 10:19-25 is one of the greatest paragraphs in the whole Bible!  To think that you and I can stand with a cleansed clear conscience in the “Most Holy Place” in the heavenlies because of the Blood of Jesus is breath-taking.  You can preach on so many themes from this pregnant-with-potential passage! God will lead you as you wait on Him. This is a great passage that you can preach on regarding the Blood of Jesus, intercession in the Most Holy Place, and don’t neglect the mighty verse in Hebrews 10:31 “It is a terrifying thing to fall into the hands of the living God!”

 

9. Hebrews 11 is the great “Hall of Faith” chapter.  What a great portion of Scripture!  Vs. 1 and vs. 6 are profound passages on faith!  You could focus on Hebrews 11:32-40 — there is so much good stuff in these 8-9 verses.  Check out the phrase in vs. 40 where the Holy Spirit inspired the writer to write: “because God had provided something better for us,”  Wow!  Let the Lord guide you into this great truth and then preach it!

 

10. Hebrews 12:1-2 will preach itself!  It is so rich with eternal, wonderful truth!  Praise the Lord!   Hebrews 12:14-17 is one of the greatest holiness passages in the entire Book of God.  Notice what the Holy Spirit has to say about the “root of bitterness.”  So many of our church attenders struggle with bitterness!  The Word of God can set them free!  Look at these rich verses and preach these worthy, wonderful truths.  You and your people will be so blessed as you soak with your folks in these pages of Hebrews!

WEEK 19  •  May 15-21, 2019

Hebrews 13 - 1 Peter 1

 

1. Hebrews 13:12-17 is rich with preaching potential!  You could preach on:

      • Hebrews 13:12 and how Jesus died to sanctify you and me.  He didn’t die to forgive us or heal us, because He was able to do that BEFORE He went to the cross — but, He died on the cross to sanctify us!

      • Hebrews 13:15 speaks of the sacrifice of praise and thanksgiving that we want to give to our worthy God continually.  You could preach on this worthy theme.

      • Hebrews 13:17 teaches us to obey our leaders and submit to them.  God honors preaching and teaching on the lessons of godly submission to godly authority.  

 

2. James 1:2-4

What a challenge!  What a command — that is not optional!  God tells us that when we are suffering and going through tough trials we should REALLY REJOICE because the Lord is going to use it all (Romans 8:28) to cause us to be “perfect and complete lacking in nothing.”  Praise the Lord!  Your people need to do 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 as a daily, exciting way of life and a way of continually praising!  “Consider it all joy!”

 

3. James 1:19-20

These two verses were so important to our family when our kids were still in the home that my wife, Connie, printed them up on a long computer-generated banner that she put around the wall of the entire room right up next to the ceiling of our dining area where we ate our family meals. Honestly, I don’t know if it really toned down our fairly raucous meal times or not, but it was a silent reminder that we needed to listen better to the Lord and each other and we needed to speak less and be slow to anger.  What a tremendous passage to memorize and meditate on and live by!  You could tie these verses with Ephesians 4:29-32 and 

James 3:1-12.  Proverbs also has a lot to say about our tongues and our speech.  We all need help from the Lord in these vital areas of our relationships and what comes out of our mouths!

 

4. James 1:22-25 calls us to be “effectual doers” of God’s Word and not merely “forgetful hearers.”  Studies show us that most American church-goers forget 95% of what they hear on Sunday mornings by Wednesday!  Most church attenders do not take notes on what the Lord is saying to them in church on the weekends.  Consequently, they forget what the Lord has asked them to do.  They are “forgetful hearers.”  Pastor, maybe you could explore the importance of writing down what the Lord says to you so that you will not forget what He told you to do.  Exodus 24:4 tells us an amazing reality:  “And Moses wrote down all the words of the LORD.”  We call those writings:  “Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy.”  Journaling is a great tool to help us value, write down, meditate and follow through on what the Lord is telling us to do.  We must help our people NOT TO BE FORGETFUL HEARERS of God’s Word.

 

5. James 2:14-26 contrasts and compares faith and works.  James’ conclusion is that we need both!  He tells us that “faith without works is useless” (James 2:20) and that “faith without works is dead!” (James 2:26)  In fact, James says that faith is perfected by our works! (James 2:22)  Pastor, do you know anybody in your church who needs to add to their faith corresponding works?  Do you know anybody who needs to add true biblical faith to their good works?  This is a mighty message!

 

6. James 3:1-12 speaks of taming the tongue.  James says that no one can tame the tongue… but we know that our Lord can cleanse and change our hearts and out of the fulness of our hearts — our mouths speak … Jesus-ese! (like Chinese, Japanese … we want to speak Jesus-ese!)  When your heart is being continually cleansed and filled with Jesus’ Spirit — your speech will sound like Jesus more and more!  James is such a practical book!  You will love preaching from this book!

 

7. James 3:13-18 contrasts the wisdom of the world and the wisdom of heaven.  James is called “The Proverbs of the New Testament” because it contains so much of the wisdom of God (just like Proverbs in the Old Testament does!) James 1:5 starts off this great book by telling us that if any of us lacks wisdom (who doesn’t?!) that we can ask the Lord and He will give us His wisdom freely and generously.  The Lord delights in giving us His heavenly wisdom!  And when He does it will look like Jesus and it will look like James 3:13-18.

 

8. James 4 is a powerful passage!  Only the brave can preach this portion of God’s Word.  James calls out his readers and tells them that they lust after what they want.  Then he tells them that they don’t get answers to their prayers because they are praying with wrong motives.  And that is after he confronts them over their prayerlessness!  “You have not because you ask not!”  And that is just the first 3 verses of this packed chapter!  Then in James 4:4 the pastor of Old First Church of the Nazarene in Jerusalem (Jesus’ half brother James) calls his readers “adulteresses” and “enemies of God!” Can you imagine listening to a sermon like this?!  Apparently, the Holy Spirit felt like James’ readers needed to hear this difficult message!  But then look at the thrilling encouragement of James 4:5-10.  God still wants us on His side, on His team!  Praise the Lord!  This message from the Living God will still preach!

 

9. James 5:13-18 is the greatest portion of Scripture in the whole Bible on faith, healing, praying for the sick, confession of sin and the power of one intercessor!  What a paragraph!  What a challenge!  God honors His mighty Word.  Pastor as you preach on this passage and practice its precepts and patterns expect the Lord to honor you and bless you and your people with beautiful and blessed miracles, healings and great signs and wonders!  He will keep His Word as you do your part and obey this Scripture.  

 

10. James 5:19-20 calls you and your people to do something that few Christians actually get around to obeying.  This is the vitally important issue of letting the Lord use you to confront a brother or sister who is straying from the truth (they are in sin and deception) and turning them back.  What an incredibly important ministry!  We must do this!  We must!  If we don’t do this — this passage is so clear — souls die!  This is talking about the “second death” in the lake of fire that Revelation 20:14-15 is all about!  But, with the Lord’s help, we can literally “save his soul from death!”  Can you imagine a more important ministry than saving straying Christians from eternal soul death in the lake of fire?  I can’t.

 

 

WEEK 20  •  May 22-28, 2019

1 Peter 2 - 2 Peter 3

 

1. 1 Peter 2:9-10

What an encouraging passage!  This is Who you are in Christ!  This is How Jesus sees you right now!  You are royalty!  You are a priest unto God!  You are Chosen!  You are a holy person in a holy nation!  You are part of the people of God!  No one in the Old Testament was a priest, a prophet and a king.  These were the three positions that required anointing!  Then Jesus showed up.  He was the Anointed One, the Messiah, the Christ.  He was anointed to be the greatest Prophet, the highest High Priest and the King of Kings!  Now, because of Jesus’ Blood you and I are anointed to be His Royal Kings (see Revelation 1:5-6), His Prophets, and Priests!  Praise the Lord!  Preach the true Identity of your mighty, precious people!

 

2. 1 Peter 2:13-17 teaches us to submit to our human authorities for the Lord’s sake.  We are told to “honor all men, love the brotherhood, fear God and honor the king!” (1 Peter 2:17)  These are not popular or “politically correct” concepts but God will bless you as you preach and teach these eternal truths — and then model for them by your people by living them out yourself!

 

3. 1 Peter 3:1-6 speaks to wives and God promises them that their disobedient-to-the-word husbands could be won to Christ and obedience to Him — without their wives ever saying one word!  What a promise!  God wants the women of our churches to be so mighty through their gifts, their powerful prayers, and their quiet, gentle, humble, gracious, Christlike spirits!  Pastor, the women in your church need to hear the message of this paragraph.  This is so precious in the sight of God!  1 Peter 3:4 says so!

 

4. 1 Peter 3:7 is addressed to husbands.  Pastor, the men of your church really need to hear this verse preached and taught!  Teach them to honor their wives!  IF THEY DON’T — THEIR PRAYERS WILL BE HINDERED!  So many husbands do not honor their wives and their prayers are hindered.  Pastor, you have the incredible privilege of helping the husbands in your church become Christlike men of God who honor their wives and get their prayers answered!  Preach on this powerful verse!

 

5. 1 Peter 4:7-8  Look at these two great verses!  Wow!  The end is near!  It really is!  God calls us through these sentences to be of sound judgment and sober spirit — for the purpose of prayer!  Praise God for prayer!  And then look at 4:8.  Preach to your people and give them practical ideas on how they can actually live out this command to “keep fervent in your AGAPE for one another, because AGAPE covers a multitude of sins!”  You can share examples of people who are known for their fervent agape-love!  Talk about how agape covers a multitude of sins.  The Lord will give you inspiration and help as you craft a sermon on fervent agape-love!

 

6. 1 Peter 4:12-13 talks about the extreme suffering and fiery ordeal that his readers were going through.  Peter assures them that “to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing; so that also at the revelation of His glory, you may rejoice with exultation.”  To “exult” literally means to “leap for joy!”  When my little two year old grandson sees me he gets so excited that he literally runs around screaming and leaping for joy all over the floor and the couches in his home!  How it melts my heart!  So, Peter is telling us to keep on rejoicing.  Keep on leaping for joy in Jesus!  Keep on sharing the sufferings of Christ!  Great is your reward in heaven!  Many of your people are hurting.  Encourage them to allow Jesus to sanctify their sufferings!

 

7. 1 Peter 5:6-11 reminds us that God calls us to humble ourselves under the mighty hand of God and if we do that then He promises to exalt us at the proper time.  Then Peter tells us to cast all of our cares, worries and anxieties on Jesus because He cares for us!  Praise the Lord!  Encourage your people to keep on casting all that concerns them on to Jesus!  Help them to do this.  Then this same great paragraph reminds us that Satan is seeking to devour us.  But, we can resist Satan and he has to flee! (James 4:7)  Preach this victory in Jesus!  And then give your people practical teaching and training in how to resist Satan in everyday life!

 

8. 2 Peter 1:5-8

Peter gives us a list of qualities that the Lord wants us to add to our lives.  Look at this list.  Preach through these qualities and attributes, define them in everyday language, give positive examples of each of these words, and then pause and pray at the conclusion of each phrase that the Lord will help us to increasingly add these qualities to our lives.  Jesus will help your people.  You might ask your folks to grade themselves on each of these attributes.  The Lord will help you to preach and He will help your people to add these qualities to their lives.

 

9. 2 Peter 2:18-22

Preach on the fact of how sin enslaves us. Your people need to hear that our Lord Jesus can set us free from the enslavement to sin!  Have some key leaders share publicly as a part of your sermon their testimonies of how the Lord set them free from sin!  Your people should hear testimonies every week of how the Lord has healed, delivered and set folks free from sin, sickness and Satan!  Jesus wants to give every one of your people freedom from sin! Amen!  We are not just into “sin management.”  Jesus came to “set the captives free!”

 

10. 2 Peter 3:9

What a fantastic promise!  Praise the Lord!  God is not willing that any should perish.  God is patient!  Praise the Lord for the patience of the Lord!  He wants everybody to come to repentance (change their mind!)  This is a fantastic verse to preach on!  Praise God that He wants to save everybody!  Lead your people in prayer and have them call out the names of their friends and loved ones who need to be saved!  Praise Jesus that He wants to save them and that He will!  Check out 

1 John 5:14-15!  Pray in the will of God for their salvation since we know from 2 Peter 3:9 that it is His will for those folks to be saved and then praise Him for the fact that they will be saved!  Amen!!

WEEK 21  •  June 1-7, 2019

1 John 1 - 3 John

 

1. 1 John 1:7

What a tremendous verse this is!  What a promise!  Praise the Lord!  Explain to your people what it means to “walk in the light.”  Preach on what it means to have true unity, oneness, and godly fellowship with each other.  Teach on the benefits of the Blood.  There are at least 25 major things that the Blood of Jesus does for us.  It cleanses us, it sanctifies us, it helps us overcome Satan, it gives us access to the Throne of God, it heals us, and so many other powerful things!  Preach on the cleansing that we can have daily … from “all sin!”

 

2. 1 John 1:9

This is truly one of my favorite verses in the whole Bible.  I use it every time I lead someone to Christ or when I preach on salvation.  To “confess” = “to admit and agree.”  When we confess our sins to the Lord we are saying, “Yes, I admit it, Lord, I did what You saw me do!  I agree with you that I sinned!  You know that I sinned and I agree with you that it was sin!”  If we confess — that is our part in the deal — then look what the Lord says He will do because He is faithful and righteous — He will forgive us our sins and He will cleanse us from all unrighteousness!  Forgive and cleanse — and we need both!  Salvation and Sanctification … Praise the Lord!  This is an easy verse to preach!

 

3. 1 John 2:1-2

Praise the Lord, this verse tells us that we do not have to sin!  Today, I do not have to sin!  Praise the Power of God!  But this verse says that if I do sin that I have a Defense Lawyer, a Friend in Court, an Advocate with the Father — Jesus Christ the Righteous!  Aren’t you grateful that you have a Defender in Jesus?  Praise Jesus!  He loves us and He steps forward in the Court of Heaven and fights for us!  There are a few big words in these verses that you will need to break down for your modern audience including:  “Advocate”  “Propitiation”  “Righteous”  These are important Bible words that your people need to know.  You have the high privilege and honor of helping your people not only know the definition of these great words, but you have the joy of helping them to understand what these terms mean to Jesus and what they mean to us as Jesus lives out these roles in our lives.

 

4. 1 John 1:7 introduced us to the concept of “walking” in the light “as Jesus Himself is in the light” and now in 1 John 2:6 the thought of daily walking, one step after another, moment-by-moment is brought up by the author of this book, the Apostle John.  He tells us here that the Lord expects us to:  “abide” in Jesus and to “walk in the same manner as He walked.”  John 15 is all about abiding in Jesus.  Go back in your Bible and check out what we learn about abiding from that poignant passage of Scripture.  Explore with your people in your sermon about how Jesus walked out His faith and obedience to ABBA every day and every moment of His life.

 

If we are supposed to “walk in the same manner as He walked” then, obviously, we are going to need to know how He walked and how He was able to walk in grace, truth, obedience, faith and live a perfect life that was so pleasing to His Father in heaven.  Christlikeness is our goal and passion.  We are called to raise up and make Christlike disciples in all the nations.  The same Holy Spirit WHO helped Jesus walk it out everyday … can and will help us to walk each day just like Jesus walked!  Aren’t you glad that you can call on and count on the power of the Holy Spirit to walk, talk, live, love, act and react JUST LIKE JESUS! … IN THIS LIFETIME! (See 1 John 4:17)

 

5. 1 John 2:15-17

Too many of us still love the world and the things in the world!  Remind and warn your people of the awful danger of loving the world and its toys and things!  Remember Lot’s wife!  Remember what James 4:4 says about loving the world!  Vs. 16 reminds us of the “Big Three” — “the lust of the flesh”  “the lust of the eyes”  “the boastful pride of life.”  Pastor, do you think your people, for the most part, could give accurate descriptions of these phrases?  Could they parse the difference between the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes?  Do you think that it would be helpful if your people could explain to their children what these things are?  You have the great privilege of teaching them what these three sins look like and what they do to us if we let them rule our lives.  You can offer your people the thrilling reality that Jesus can set them free from any enslavement to these real killers!  Praise the Lord!  Your people will be FREE!  FREE INDEED!

 

6. 1 John 3:1-3

What a blessed little passage!  These 3 verses are so packed with eternal truth!  It starts off talking about the great agape-love that the Father has bestowed upon us!  We are called “children of God!” John points out that “the world does not know us, because it did not know Him!” Then vs. 2 tells us that when Jesus appears in His Second Coming we shall see Him and just the sight of Him will change us and transform us into being just like Him!  Isn’t that phenomenally fantastic great news!

 

Praise Him for His soon coming!  Praise Him and lead your people in praise to Him for His transforming power and that someday we will be just like Him!  Then move into vs. 3 and help your people to see that we have something we need to do — if we have this hope of His Second Coming and if we have this wonderful hope that we will someday not only see Him but that we will also become like Him — look at what He wants and expects us to do in the meantime until He returns.  We are to purify ourselves just as He is pure!  Praise God, PURITY IS POSSIBLE IN JESUS!  Do your people know this?  Do you think that they know HOW TO PURIFY THEMSELVES JUST AS HE IS PURE?

 

It is your job, Pastor, and your blessed responsibility and your high honor to preach and teach your people so that they know how to purify themselves in the power of the Holy Spirit so that they can be as pure as Jesus!  As you lovingly evaluate the spiritual state of the people of your flock how many of them, or what percentage of them, are as pure as Jesus?  How can you help those in your church who are NOT pure?

 

7. 1 John 3:5-10

What a great holiness passage!  Praise the Lord!  Your people need to know the freeing truths of these verses.  This portion of God’s Word clearly tell us why Jesus came to earth!  Jesus came to:  take away sins and to destroy the works of the devil.  Do you think that your people know these verses?  Do you think that they agree with the statement found in vs. 9 “No one who is born of God practices sin, because His seed abides in him; and he cannot sin, because he is born of God!”  Pastor, do you need to help your people wrestle through the clear implications of this verse?  What does this all mean for the practical lives of your blessed people.  By the way, they are very blessed to have a pastor like you if you will teach and preach and live out these verses in front of them!  God bless you, Pastor!

 

8. 1 John 3:21-22 is a great statement and promise concerning prayer!  You could preach a great sermon on the Powerful Prayer Promises of Jesus that John teaches us.  You could preach from this passage and others like it including:  1 John 5:14-15; John 14:12-14; John 15:7,16; John 16:23-24 and others.  John the Apostle was prompted and inspired by the Holy Spirit to convey to us these thrilling truths and promises from Jesus about prayer!  Praise God for Prayer!  Claim His promises and pray boldly!

 

9. 1 John 4 is so rich in sermonic material!  Praise God!  

          • Vs. 4 - “greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world.”  Your people need to hear this truth and believe it!

          • Vs. 5-12 contains one of the single greatest paragraphs on God’s kind of agape-love that we are to have for one another.

          • Vs. 13-16 covers the all-important concept of abiding in Him and abiding in love.

          • Vs. 17 speaks of His agape being perfected in us and it also tells us that we are to be just like Jesus in this lifetime in this world.

          • Vs. 18 - “There is no fear in agape-love, but perfect agape casts out fear…”  Think of it — NO FEAR!!

          • Vs. 19 - “We agape because He first agaped us!”

 

And there are other great truths and concepts in this passage!  You could spend a month preaching on the blessed realities, commands and promises found in this mighty chapter!

 

10. 1 John 5:14-15 changed my whole life of prayer!  These verses challenge us with this truth:  If we pray for God’s Will to be done we can know with confidence and assurance that God hears us!  In Bible talk when God says that He will hear us — we know that this means He will answer and do something about it!  These verses say that we can positively know that we “HAVE THE REQUESTS WHICH WE HAVE ASKED FROM HIM!”  CAN WE POSSIBLY PRAISE GOD ENOUGH FOR THIS GREAT PROMISE?!

 

So, this makes it clear, we simply need to figure out with the Holy Spirit’s help, if what we are asking for is indeed God’s Will or not … if not, pray differently and ask God to show you how to pray.  If it is God’s Will — then pray with bold, bodacious, aggressive confidence AND BEGIN PRAISING HIM BECAUSE YOU KNOW THAT YOU KNOW THAT YOU KNOW THAT HE HAS HEARD YOU AND THAT YOU ALREADY HAVE THE REQUEST THAT YOU HAVE ASKED FROM HIM!

WEEK 22  •  June 8-14, 2019

Jude - Revelation 6

 

1. Jude was written by the half-brother of Jesus. It is a great little book only one chapter long but it is packed with the truth and wisdom of God!  Look at vs. 9.  Here we have a most fascinating account of an “argument” in the heavenlies between two archangels — Satan and Michael — and Jude reports, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, that Satan and Michael disputed and argued over the dead corpse of Moses!  Imagine that!  Wow! What do you think that Satan wanted to do with Moses’ dead body?  And this verse tells us that Michael prevailed by using words!  He said, “The Lord rebuke you!”  This reminds us of another time this powerful statement was more than enough to deal decisively with Satan. See Zechariah 3:2. This is a great strategic weapon that we can use on the enemy of our souls.  Praise God. You can preach on how our intercessions enable the godly angels to overcome the forces of hell. See Daniel chapters 9 and 10!

 

 

2. Jude verse 14 clues us in on an ancient prophecy that we find no where else in history or the Bible.  It refers to a prophecy of Enoch in the 7th generation from Adam.  Obviously, Jude knew about this prophecy.  Amazingly in this verse Enoch prophesies about the Second Coming of Christ — BEFORE HE CAME THE FIRST TIME!  This verse would be a great lead in to a message on the 2nd Coming!  If the Lord God felt that someone thousands of years ago should prophecy about the 2nd Coming of Christ (even before His first coming to earth) — then how important do you think the Return of Christ is to the Father?  Preach with confidence Pastor, our Lord Jesus is coming back soon … maybe within the lifetime of your listeners.

 

3. Jude verses 20-24 challenge us on how we should live in these the last days before our Lord’s Return.  You could preach on any of the following:

    • How we should “build ourselves up on your most holy faith.”

    • “Praying in the Holy Spirit.”  Help your people know what this phrase means?  Our Pentecostal and Charismatic brothers and sisters  teach that this means praying in tongues.  Are they correct?  What do you think?  What is the difference of praying in the Holy Spirit and NOT praying in the Holy Spirit?  Do you think that your people know the difference?

    • “keep yourself in the agape of God,”  Pastor do not assume that all of your people know what this phrase means.  How do we keep ourselves in the love (agape) of God?  God loves everybody unconditionally.  We know and we believe that.  But what does this verse mean and what does it imply?  It implies that some people who are greatly loved by God — are NOT in the love of God!  How can we know if we are keeping ourselves in the love of God or not?  

    • The rest of these verses have commands and admonitions for us to follow.  Each of these are probably worthy of a sermon or at least a point in one of your future sermons.

 

4. Jude verses 24-25 contain one of the greatest “benedictions” or blessings in the whole Bible.  Look at each phrase.  Study and meditate your way through each line of this great conclusion to this little book near the end of your Bible. Convince your people with the Word that God can indeed keep us from stumbling and that He can for sure make us “stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy!”  Think of it!  Praise the Lord!  Hallelujah!  That day is coming!  Praise the Living Lord Almighty! Preach on the keeping power of the Lord!  Remind of Judgment Day when we will all stand before King Jesus, indeed Judge Jesus and give an accounting for:  our talents and gifts He gave us to use for His glory, our money, out lives, out words, and our deeds done in the flesh!  Pastor you are prepping your people for this Great Accounting Day!  Never forget this sobering reality!  God wants to help you do this well! Amen!

 

5. Revelation 1:3

Look at the unique and special blessing that will come to you and your people if they will “read and heed” the words of Revelation!  Encourage your people to read and listen to the words and warnings of this last book in the Bible!  Many Christians won’t even try to read, hear and heed the power packed verses of this great book because they have bought the lie from hell that they can never understand this great “unveiling.”  Help your people not to feel this way about Revelation.  There are many, many good commentary helps to aid you and your people in understanding and grasping the basic components of this book.  God does not want you or your people ignorant of this mighty conclusion to the Book of God.

 

6. Revelation 1:9-20 gives us John’s initial vision of the Risen Glorified King of the Universe!  John was undone when He heard and saw Jesus the Majestic One!  Preach and teach your way through this powerful encounter that John had with Jesus.  Help your people to “picture” in their mind’s eyes what John saw that so devastated him!  John, the Beloved Disciple of Jesus who was so intimate with our Lord while He was here on earth falls at Jesus’ feet like a dead man!  Wow!  Eyes of fire!  Face like the sun in blasting, blazing, dazzling, blinding glory!  Hair and head white as snow!  This is what Jesus looks like today!  Can you worship Him?  He is the MOST WORTHY ONE!  All of these colors are symbolic of different aspects of Jesus’ glory.  Every detail that the Holy Spirit told John to write down about the appearance of Jesus and His raiments are significant and pertinent to WHO Jesus is today.  Your people will be fascinated with this description of Jesus as you lead them into loving on their Lord and Master at whose Name every knee in the universe will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord to the glory of God the Father.  He is worthy of our wonder and our worship!

 

7. The 7 Messages of Jesus Christ to the 7 Major Churches of Asia Minor (Modern Day Turkey).  What a series these 7 messages provide for us today!  No doubt every godly church today has people in it who fit into one or more of the descriptions of these churches from so long ago!  If the truth were known, aspects of all 7 churches could be found in any one church today!  Some of the churches were commended by Jesus.  All but one were condemned by our Lord for failure at various significant points.  Jesus judges and addresses all of them.  Pastor, if Jesus were evaluating your church today, what do you think He would say about you and your people?  Let these ancient messages touch the hearts and lives of your people.  Many pastors have profitably taught and preached from these 7 messages found in Revelation 2-3.  Many good commentaries are available on these 7 great messages.  Study them and preach with confidence.  Notice the great promises that are given by Jesus to those who will “overcome.”  Your people may or may not know what it means to overcome.  Help them to know what it means to truly be an overcomer in Jesus’ eyes.

 

8. Revelation 2:1-7

The Message to the Church in Ephesus.  This church had been started by Paul.  They had phenomenal pastors in Paul, Timothy and John the Apostle.  Look how Jesus commends them!  He is proud of this church and its hard work, attention to doctrine and other good qualities.  But, look at the indictment of the Lord on their hearts!  They had “left their first love.”  They were so busy working hard for Jesus that they no longer loved Him like they once did!  This broke Jesus’ heart and He commands them to Remember from where they had fallen and to REPENT! (Change their minds!) … and Return to doing the loving works of adoration and worship — loving on Jesus as their First Love.  Or else!  What an outline for a sermon and for Revival!  Remember … Repent … and Return!

 

9. Revelation 3:14-22

The Message of Jesus Christ to the Lukewarm Laodicean church.  The condition that Jesus found this church in is where 70-85% of our church attenders live.  They are not “cold” with no interest in the Lord and no desire to follow or serve Him.  They are not “hot” or “on fire” for the Lord.  They are “lukewarm.”  They know there is a God.  They believe in Him and probably believe that most of the Bible is true.  They may believe in a heaven and a hell.  They love Jesus … up to a point!  But, He is not the first love of their life.  He is not the Number One Driving Passion of their Life.  They are not cold or hot, they are “lukewarm.”  And look what Jesus says about them.  They nauseate Him and He will vomit them out of His mouth!  And He is not vomiting them into heaven!  Lord have mercy!  Pastor, if your church is like most churches in America — the vast majority of your church is cold or lukewarm and they are all still LOST!  The lukewarm do not go to heaven if they die in this unrepentant state.  The lukewarm do not get raptured when Jesus comes for His Bride.  They are left.  They are lost.  They are only lukewarm and they go to hell!  Jesus begs and commands them to repent!  They need to repent! (change their minds)  If they do not repent they are vomited out of the presence of the Lord!  This message is too serious for you NOT TO PREACH, Pastor!  

 

10. Revelation 4-5 are two of the most glory packed chapters in the whole Bible of our Lord!  They describe what we will one day see in glory — in heaven!  Praise the Lord for this brief glimpse of what we will one day experience!  These chapters describe the throne room of God and the mighty worship that is going on there right now and throughout eternity past and future!  We learn so much from these two chapters about:  our God, heaven, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, true worship in heaven, the elders, the mighty holy ones and so much more!  You need to read these chapters to your people outloud and help them to visualize and imagine what is being described here.  Voices, an emerald (that’s green) rainbow around the throne, thunder, lightning, balls of fire, the 7 Spirits of God, scrolls, judgments, angels, cherubim, elders, crowns, the Lion, the Lamb, believers and so many more… all worshipping eternally!  Preach on these passages and what we learn about true worship from these scenes in heaven.  Praise the Living, Loving, Eternal Lord God Almighty!

WEEK 23  •  June 15-21, 2019

Revelation 7-13

 

1. Revelation 7:1-9 reveals that there is coming a day when the Lord God Almighty will raise up 144,000 Jewish witnesses for Jesus who will cover the earth as the greatest missionaries we have ever seen!  Can you imagine 144,000 Jewish Billy Grahams or 144,000 modern day Jewish Apostle Pauls being unleashed on the planet winning uncountable millions and billions to Jesus?  Revelation 7:9 tells us of this the greatest revival and harvest of souls the world has ever seen!  Praise the Lord!  Preach on this coming revival.  Praise God that billions will come to Christ during the Tribulation period.  Millions will no doubt be martyred by the Anti-Christ and his murderous armies in Revelation 13 but before that awful slaughter at the end of the Tribulation there will be this almost unbelievable WORLD WIDE REVIVAL that sweeps the globe.  Praise the Lord!

 

2. Revelation 7:12 introduces us to one of the great anthems of the worship in heaven.  Each word is loaded with meaning and insight:  “Amen, blessing and glory and wisdom and thanksgiving and honor and power and might be to our God forever and ever, Amen.”  Our Lord deserves all of this!  He is WORTHY!  Praise Him!  Glory!  Verses 9-11 tells us who is saying and shouting this mighty praise!  Look at what these verses tell us about the worship around the throne!  This is thrilling beyond imagination!  Preach and teach messages about the worship in heaven!  Revelation has a number of these great scenes.  May our worship on earth be “as it is in heaven!” Amen!

 

3. Revelation 6 and chapters 8 and 9 reveal the mighty judgments that are going to come on the earth during the Great Tribulation period.  These are not popular chapters to preach on but there is marvelous truth hidden in these pages.  Why do you think that God inspired John the Apostle to write these words if He didn’t want us to know these mighty up-coming events and judgments?  Ask the Lord to give you insight, wisdom and revelation as to what He wants you to teach your people from these eternally true truths!  God wants us to know this unveiling … this revelation of what is about to happen on the earth!  This is all true and it is actually going to happen.  Some of your listeners, Pastor, will probably live to see this all happen.  They need to know the truth of this passage!  JESUS IS VICTOR AND HE IS LORD of it all!  Praise Him!

 

4. Revelation 9:21 gives us an amazing and shocking truth!  After the people on earth see Satan’s wrath poured out on the earth in the Tribulation period look what happens.  And after the folks on this planet endure the wrath of God Almighty and the Lamb (that’s Jesus!) that is poured out on this globe … and after the wrath of millions of sinful people act out their wrath and anger on the planet — look at this verse:  MOST OF THE PEOPLE ON EARTH WILL STILL NOT REPENT!! (change their minds and worship and follow Jesus)  Preach on this reality.  The people on planet earth have seen billions die … and yet they still do not change their minds (repent) and yield to our Lord.  Call your people to repent now — of their sins — while they can still hear the convicting Voice of the Holy Spirit.  Repentance is a true gift of God.  Thank God for the ability to change your mind (repent) and start agreeing with God.

 

5. Revelation 10 thrills us with an account of a very strong angel coming down out of heaven.  What a vision!  What a revelation!  This is amazing!  Study this short chapter and see what happens next.  What do you learn about our Great God and His Heavenly Kingdom from this powerful angel and his ministry on the earth in the last days?  Listen to the voices and messages of this chapter.  God has much to say to us from this chapter.  The Lamb (Jesus) who commands all of this to happen is Lord after all.  The Lamb is the Lord!!

 

6. Revelation 11 testifies to the two great witnesses that God raises up who are the mightiest men on the planet that the world has ever seen!  They are like Moses and Elijah of old.  They wield unbelievable power by the Holy Spirit.  Read what happens to them and watch how they are killed.  Then watch how they are resurrected from the dead and the whole world watches this marvel!  Look at the great passage in Revelation 11:15 and see how mighty voices begin to shout in heaven:  “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord, and of His Christ; and He will reign forever and ever.”  PRAISE OUR JESUS!!  He is Worthy!  Your people will thrill to know the truth of what is about to happen on this planet!  Preach Revelation!

 

7. Revelation 11:18-19 are thrilling verses!  The nations are enraged!  God’s wrath has come on the earth.  The dead are to be judged and their rewards passed out.  Those who are God’s servants and prophets and saints and who fear His Name will be rewarded by God.  Praise the Lord!  Then vs. 19 tells us that the temple of God which is in heaven was opened!  The ark of the covenant of God shows up. There are flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder and an earthquake and a great hailstorm!  What a couple of verses!  All of this is coming soon!  Praise the God who is in charge of all of this!  You can preach on these mighty themes!  Praise Him!

 

8. Revelation 12:1-10 reveals a prophetic vision of war in heaven between Satan and his demons and Michael and his awesome angels!  Praise God for His mighty, mighty angels who out-number the demons 2:1!  Preach the Victory of Jesus over Satan and all of his evil spirits.  Look at the tremendous shout of heaven in 12:10!  Preach the Victory of Jesus that is proclaimed and that we will see someday!  Jesus won it all at the cross!  Victory in Jesus!  Wow!  Don’t just preach your way through the Revelation — PRAISE YOUR WAY THROUGH IT!  Pray the prayers of this blessed book and then worship and praise your way through it using the words of the worshippers in heaven as your model and template!  Praise the God of Revelation who wins over all and rules over all!  The Lamb wins and rules — Praise Him!

 

9. Revelation 12:11 is one of the greatest victory verses in the whole Bible and it prescribes how we can have total victory over Satan all the time.  Note how they overcame Satan and all of his lies.  They won because of:

1. The Blood of the Lamb Jesus

2. The Word of their Testimony  — The Word of God became their spoken out-loud testimony!

3. They did not love their lives even unto death!  In other words, loving, serving and obeying Jesus meant more to them than their next breath.  They would die long before they would deny Jesus or disobey Him!

Help your beloved people to destroy the works of the devil in their lives and to blast the lies Satan tries on them with these 3 mighty weapons!  Teach and train them how to use these 3 blessed truths to win every time!  Praise the Victorious Jesus who won it all for us!  We share and we walk in His Victory all the time!

 

10. Revelation 13 is all about the Anti-Christ and the False Prophet who are both energized and demonized by Satan himself.  This is an amazingly revealing chapter.  Look at a startling truth in verses 6-9!  God is going to allow this Awful One to make war on the saints and overcome them for a season!  Can you believe it?  Why do you think that the Lord will allow His people to be overcome by such an Evil One?  What do you think are the Lord’s purposes behind all of this?  Why does God ever let His precious children be tortured and slaughtered by the millions?

 

Preach on the purposes of the Mighty One of Israel to allow suffering for a season to overwhelm and overcome His people — who will ultimately rule and reign victoriously with Him!  (See Daniel 7:21-22)

Later, at the end of Revelation, we find out what happens to Satan and these two evil men who were his pawns.  (See Revelation 19:20 — 20:10)  Preach the truth that in the end Jesus is Victor and He is Lord!  Even these two phenomenally evil ones and Satan will bow before Jesus and declare that He is Lord to the glory of God the Father!  We win because Jesus wins!  And He has already won!  Praise Him!

WEEK 24  •  June 22-28, 2019

Revelation 14-20

 

1. Revelation 14:1-5 picks up on the wonderful ministry of the 144,000 Jewish evangelists for Jesus that the Lord introduced to us in 

Revelation 7.  What mighty folk these men are!  Look how they are described in this paragraph.  They are wonderful examples for all of us!

      • They are marked by God with His Name (Yahweh) and the Name of His Son Yeshua - vs. 1

      • They sing a new song that only they know.  They are powerful worshipers of our God. - vs. 3

      • They are morally, sexually pure. They are chaste. - vs. 4

      • They follow Jesus the Lamb wherever He goes! - vs. 4

      • They have been purchased by God! - vs. 4

      • They will not lie - ever! - vs. 5

      • They are blameless!  - vs. 5

By God’s grace, Pastor, you and your people can live like these 144,000!  Preach on this possibility and how God will use and honor and bless those who follow the example of the 144,000 Chosen Ones.

 

2. Revelation 14:6-12

A mighty angel flies in midheaven preaching an eternal gospel to EVERYBODY on earth!  Think of it!  And what is the bottom line of this angel’s awesome message?  Here it is, in vs. 7 “Fear God, and give Him glory!”  This is the basic message of the entire Bible!  What a simple, but eternally profound truth — Fear God and give Him glory!  Lead your people by preaching this eternal gospel.  These are truly words to live and die by!

 

3. Revelation 14:9-12 warns us in the most severe terms of ever worshipping the Anti-Christ (the Beast) and receiving the mark of the Beast on our foreheads or upon our hands.  Eternal torment is promised to anyone who takes the mark of the Beast on their body.  Your people need to be reminded of these sober words.  Notice in vs. 11 that those who take or receive the mark of the Beast will be tormented forever and that “the smoke of their torment goes up forever and ever; and they have no rest day and night, those who worship the beast and his image, and whoever receives the mark of his name.”  Look at the preceding verse!  Here it tells us that the damned will be tormented with fire and brimstone “in the presence of the holy angels and in the presence of the Lamb.” (Remember, Jesus is the Lamb!)

 

Pastor, do you believe these awful words?  Are those who are lost really tormented forever in the presence of Jesus?  If you believe Jesus and you believe what He says and you believe the Bible — then you need to warn your people of the possibility and inevitably that they will be tortured and tormented forever in the presence of Jesus … if they reject Jesus’ salvation and follow any other!  You will give an account for the souls who sit under your ministry, Pastor. (See Hebrews 13:17)  Love them enough to preach the whole counsel of God and to teach them about the reality of hell and its torments with a broken, concerned heart… and how to escape this awful place. 

 

4. Revelation 15:1-8 gives us another picture of the profound and stunning worship in heaven!  Look at the song of Moses and the song of the Lamb (that’s Jesus!) found in verses 3-4.  Pastor you can preach and teach your people about the Great God we love and serve and worship from each phrase of this worship “set.”  Preach on the Temple in heaven described in verses 5-8 and what is going on there and what will happen there someday!  Your people probably need to know more about heaven and the worship that goes on there.

 

5. Revelation 16 is one of the last chapters that describes the great wrath of God being poured out on the planet just before Jesus comes back to earth!  Pastor, do you believe that the Bride of Christ, the Church, will be raptured out of here before the coming events of this chapter hit the earth?  If so, comfort and encourage your people that Jesus will take them out of here before all the terrible events of this chapter happen.  If, on the other hand, Pastor, you believe that the Church has to go through all the judgments or at least be alive while these judgments of the Tribulation slam into our planet and you believe in a “post-Trib” rapture — then you really need to preach and teach your people how they can endure the most awful season of suffering, death, plagues, and cataclysmic earth and heaven shaking phenomena the world has ever known.  Prepare your people to ENDURE TO THE END!  Their very souls depend on how you prepare them to overcome and persevere to the end!  

(See Revelation 14:12)

 

6. Revelation chapters 17-18 deal with the mysterious world system of Babylon and the great harlot of Babylon and their total destruction and judgment!  God may allow evil to prevail and rule for awhile — but in the end all false gods, and all false systems, and all false religions, and all world rulers will fail and they will fall — totally!  God and good triumph over it all!  Jesus is Lord!  He will rule and overrule!  He will conquer and He will reign from His Throne in Jerusalem!  Praise His Name!  Don’t you love Him?  Don’t you want to honor Him and worship Him!  We WIN in the end!  Everything and everybody will bow before our Lord Jesus!  Preach the Triumph of Good over Evil and Jesus over Everybody and Everything!  Comfort your people with these words!

 

7. Revelation 19 is one of the greatest chapters in the whole Bible.  In this POWERFUL passage we see the physical Return of Christ to this planet!  What a glorious portion of Scripture!  There are 3 times more verses in the Bible about the Second Coming of Christ than there are about His First Coming!  Preach through these revealing words and promise your people that Jesus is coming back — SOON!  We are one day closer to His Imminent Return than we were yesterday!

 

You could preach from this chapter on:

      • The worship described here that is going to happen in heaven. Verses 1-7

      • The marriage of Jesus the Lamb and His Bride the Church.  Verses 6-10

      • The description of Jesus, The Word of God, as He comes with might, power, and glory on a mighty white charger (horse).  You could preach on what He looks like now and on that day and the prophetic significance of each descriptive aspect given to us in this passage.  What do we learn about the Eternal Son of God from this section of God’s Word?  This is what Jesus looks like now!  Verses 11-16

      • The battle of Armageddon and how Jesus TOTALLY WINS and what happens to the Anti-Christ (the Beast) and the False Prophet and all the enemies of God!  Verses 17-21

 

8. Preach on the Names of Jesus and His ABBA our Lord God from Revelation 19. They include:

      • God

      • Lord

      • Almighty

      • Lamb

      • Faithful

      • True

      • The Word of God

      • King of Kings

      • Lord of Lords

 

As you preach through these powerful Names of our Lord you can conclude by asking your parishioners if Jesus is truly the King in their lives and is He truly the Ultimate and Most High King of all the other competing “kings” in their lives.  And is He truly the Master LORD of all in their hearts and lives.  Challenge them to let Jesus the Great One of this chapter and indeed this whole book and even more the Greatest One of the whole Bible — challenge them to let Jesus be Lord of all and King of all their hearts and lives.  Remind them if Jesus is not Lord of everything then He is not Lord at all!

 

9. Revelation 20 is the chapter on the Millennial (1,000 year of Jesus) Reign of Christ.  Look at the thrilling truths of Revelation 20:6!  Think what this one verse alone says about WHO WE REALLY ARE IN CHRIST!  We are “priests of God and of Christ and (we) will reign with Him for a thousand years!”  Jesus is talking about those of us who have put our faith and trust in Jesus and we have made Him the Lord and King of our lives!  Praise God!  Praise Jesus!  Hallelujah!  Don’t you honor and love our Lord and our King?!  Remind your people again over and over in your preaching of WHO THEY REALLY ARE IN JESUS AND WHAT THEY WILL BE DOING FOR HIM AND WITH HIM — THAT IS, RULING OVER ALL THE WORKS OF HIS HANDS — FROM HIS THRONE WITH HIM!!

 

10. Revelation 20:11-15 clues us in on the great white throne judgment and the books being opened in heaven, including the book of life.  It also tells us the truth about death and Hades or hell.  There is coming a day when death, Hades and anyone whose name was not found written in the book of life will thrown into the lake of fire, which God says is the second death.  They will be there forever!  God have mercy!  Preach on heaven, grace, forgiveness, God’s loving tender compassion AND preach on the reality of hell and worse than hell — the eternal lake of fire!  Don’t let anyone who sits under your ministry ever doubt whether or not you believe in heaven and hell and the lake of fire and Judgment Day.

 

Please love your people enough to tell them the truth about their eternal future.

 

Jesus will help you to do it with compassion and fire!

PO Box 281 | Gardner, KS  66030 | jnwilliams1123@gmail.com | Tel: 405-615-4165

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