podcast archive

Growing Deeper (Mark 9:20–27)

Stand Alone Sermon
Stand Alone Sermon
Growing Deeper (Mark 9:20–27)
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Sermon Outline:

How do we become Christians? Repent and believe the Gospel.

How do we grow deeper as Christians? Repent and believe the Gospel.

Q1: Repentance: What’s the sin underneath all your sin?

  • Underneath every sin is a lie.
  • Every sin at its deepest root springs from unbelief.
  • Our problem lies in the gap between our confessional faith, what we believe in theory our functional belief, what we believe in practice. 

Q2: Faith: What truth do you need to turn to? 

  • God is Great, so we don’t have to be in control (Rom. 8:26-39, Ps. 136, Isaiah 40)
  • God is Glorious, so we don’t have to fear others (Prov. 29:25, Ps. 27:1-3, Matt. 10:28)
  • God is Good, so we don’t have to look elsewhere (Ps. 16:11, Ps. 63, Luke 15:11-32)
  • God is Gracious, so we don’t have to prove ourselves (Eph. 2:1-10, Matt. 9:1-13, Ps. 86)

*This sermon was preached by Andy Beams.

Grace Fueled Obedience (1 Peter 1:13-25)

1 Peter: Thriving In Exile
1 Peter: Thriving In Exile
Grace Fueled Obedience (1 Peter 1:13-25)
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Sermon Outline:

  1. Command #1— Set your hope (1 Peter 1:13).
  2. Command #2— Be holy (1 Peter 1:14-21).
  3. Command #3—Love earnestly (1 Peter 1:22-25).

Discussion Questions:

  • What are the things that narrow your gaze or focus? What desires/hopes cloud your mind from seeing Jesus? How does hope in the Gospel broaden your gaze? Or, how is Jesus better?
  • God’s kindness leads to repentance (not the reverse) and our salvation fuels our obedience (not the reverse). Why are we so tempted to switch the order of those statements?
  • Finish the sentence: In my life, greater holiness looks like… (Hint: It looks more like Jesus!)

This is the 4th sermon of the series 1 Peter: Thriving In Exile.

A Reason to Rejoice (1 Peter 1:3-12)

Sermon Outline:

  1. A salvation worthy of celebrating (1 Peter 1:3-5).
  2. A reason to rejoice, even amidst suffering (1 Peter 1:6-9).
  3. A reminder to understand the times we live in (1 Peter 1:10-12).

Notable Quotes:

“A very strong proof of this destruction of death and its conquest by the cross is supplied by a present fact, namely this. All the disciples of Christ despise death; they take the offensive against it and, instead of fearing it, by the sign of the cross and by faith in Christ trample on it as on something dead. Before the divine sojourn of the Saviour, even the holiest of men were afraid of death, and mourned the dead as those who perish. But now that the Saviour has raised His body, death is no longer terrible, but all those who believe in Christ tread it underfoot as nothing, and prefer to die rather than to deny their faith in Christ, knowing full well that when they die they do not perish, but live indeed, and become incorruptible through the resurrection…Death has become like a tyrant who has been completely conquered by the legitimate monarch; bound hand and foot the passers-by jeer at him, hitting him and abusing him, no longer afraid of his cruelty and rage, because of the king who has conquered him. So has death been conquered and branded for what it is by the Saviour on the cross. It is bound hand and foot, all who are in Christ trample it as they pass and as witnesses to Him deride it, scoffing and saying, ‘O Death, where is thy victory? O Grave, where is thy sting? (1 Cor. 15:55)’”                —-St. Athanasius 

“If you could have heaven, with no sickness, and with all the friends you ever had on earth, and all the food you ever liked, and all the leisure activities you ever enjoyed, and all the natural beauties you ever saw, all the physical pleasures you ever tasted, and no human conflict or any natural disasters, could you be satisfied with heaven, if Christ were not there?”            —John Piper

Discussion Questions:

  • What do you hope for (or hope in)? What preferred future are you telling yourself is just around the corner? Is it eternal? Perfect? Does it diminish over time? Be honest…
  • If you are a follower of Jesus, how often do you reflect on your salvation? How might that impact how you view times of suffering?

This is the 3rd sermon of the series 1 Peter: Thriving In Exile. Unfortunately, the audio was not recorded.

Elect and Exiled, Chosen and Homeless (1 Peter 1:1-2)

1 Peter: Thriving In Exile
1 Peter: Thriving In Exile
Elect and Exiled, Chosen and Homeless (1 Peter 1:1-2)
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Sermon Outline:

  1. Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ… (1 Peter 1:1a)
  2. To those who are elect exiles… (1 Peter 1:1b)
  3. Know that… (1 Peter 1:2)

Discussion Questions:

  • What are some examples of how the American church has struggled to remember we are exiles? How does living as if this is our home negatively impact our ability to live for Jesus?
  • What does it feel like to not belong in a culture you are immersed in? How does knowing God chose you change those feelings?
  • Are there any areas of your life that you might be living as if you belong in this world, rather than you are an exile?

This is the 2nd sermon of the series 1 Peter: Thriving In Exile.

Growth Through Pain (Intro to 1 Peter)

1 Peter: Thriving In Exile
1 Peter: Thriving In Exile
Growth Through Pain (Intro to 1 Peter)
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Sermon Outline:

  1. A confusing theme in 1 Peter…
  2. Evil is real, God is good, and that’s not a contradiction.
  3. It turns out, we aren’t the first ones to suffer…
  4. Could something bigger be going on behind our suffering?

Discussion Questions:

  • When in your life did you grow the most as a follower of Christ? How did God grow you?
  • Have you ever felt that the existence of evil is a barrier to trusting Jesus? How do the verses we read today about Jesus suffering help deal with that barrier?
  • What is hard in your life right now? What would it look/feel like to experience Jesus’ presence in that?

This is the 1st sermon of the series 1 Peter: Thriving In Exile.

The Song We Were Born Remembering (Psalm 90)

Stand Alone Sermon
Stand Alone Sermon
The Song We Were Born Remembering (Psalm 90)
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Sermon Outline:

  1. Longing for home (Psalm 90:1-2).
  2. Remembering we are dust (Psalm 90:3-6).
  3. The origin of our problem (Psalm 90:7-11).
  4. Finding our way home (Psalm 90:12-17).

Notable Quote:

“Our commonest expedient is to call it beauty and behave as if that had settled the matter. Wordsworth’s expedient was to identify it with certain moments in his own past. But all this is a cheat. If Wordsworth had gone back to those moments in the past, he would not have found the thing itself, but only the reminder of it; what he remembered would turn out to be itself a remembering. The books or the music in which we thought the beauty was located will betray us if we trust to them; it was not in them, it only came through them, and what came through them was longing. These things—the beauty, the memory of our own past—are good images of what we really desire; but if they are mistaken for the thing itself they turn into dumb idols, breaking the hearts of their worshipers. For they are not the thing itself; they are only the scent of a flower we have not found, the echo of a tune we have not heard, news from a country we have never yet visited.”      —C.S. Lewis, The Weight of Glory

Discussion Questions:

  • In what ways do you feel “homeless?” What longings do you have? How is God your dwelling place?
  • How does your heart respond to the Psalm’s reminder that we are temporary, that death is inevitable? How does Jesus tasting death for us change your heart’s response?
  • Which of the 6 prayers in Vv. 12-17 stand out to you the most? Why? How will you pray each of those this coming week?

New Year, New Creation (2 Corinthians 5:16-21)

Stand Alone Sermon
Stand Alone Sermon
New Year, New Creation (2 Corinthians 5:16-21)
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Discussion Questions

1)  How are you coming into the New Year?  Do you feel refreshed and motivated to step into 2023?  

2)  How does this passage help us take the focus off of ourselves and how we’re performing? How can that reality help our energy level and hope for the New Year?

3)  Where is a space you can step into in the ministry of Reconciliation? If there anyone in your relational circles or DC with whom you could work together?

The Dichotomy of Christmas (John 1:14-18)

The WORD Became Flesh (Advent 2022)
The WORD Became Flesh (Advent 2022)
The Dichotomy of Christmas (John 1:14-18)
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Sermon Outline:

  1. In Christ the impossible is possible (John 1:14).
  2. 4 implications of the impossible becoming possible (John 1:15-18).

Helpful Quotes:

  • “The Gospel is this: We are more sinful and flawed in ourselves than we ever dared believe, yet at the very same time we are more loved and accepted in Jesus Christ than we ever dared hope.” Tim Keller
  • “For the solidarity of mankind is such that, by virtue of the Word’s indwelling in a single human body, the corruption which goes with death has lost its power over all. You know how it is when some great king enters a large city and dwells in one of its houses; because of his dwelling in that single house, the whole city is honored, and enemies and robbers cease to molest it. Even so is it with the King of all; He has come into our country and dwelt in one body amidst the many, and in consequence the designs of the enemy against mankind have been foiled and the corruption of death, which formerly held them in its power, has simply ceased to be. For the human race would have perished utterly had not the Lord and Savior of all the Son of God, come among us to put an end to death.” St. Athanasius, 318 AD

Discussion Questions: 

  • Which aspect of John 1:1-18 (what we’ve studied the past four weeks) stands out as the most encouraging thing for you personally?
  • Why do we typically view grace and truth as existing in opposition? How does Jesus coming full of grace and truth change how you view their relationship?
  • Faithful Christianity embodies many “dichotomies” similar to what John outlines in v. 14. E.g. loving our enemies, finding peace amidst trials, etc. What other dichotomies are we called to embody as Christians? How does God becoming man help us with that?

**This is week four of Advent 2022.

Would You Have Followed Jesus? (John 1:9-13)

The WORD Became Flesh (Advent 2022)
The WORD Became Flesh (Advent 2022)
Would You Have Followed Jesus? (John 1:9-13)
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Sermon Outline:

  1. The nature of Jesus (John 1:9).
  2. The natural response to Jesus (John 1:10-11).
  3. The unnatural grace of Jesus (John 1:12-13).

Discussion Questions: 

  • Have you ever wondered if you would have chosen to follow Jesus if you lived in the 1st Century? What does this passage do to your opinion of yourself?
  • Read verse 12, what part of this is the most astonishing to you? Why?
  • Verse 9 hints at the fact that people are always looking for “light,” or people to look up to/worship. Where do you see this in our day? Why are we prone to fall for this temptation?

**This is week three of Advent 2022.

Three Invitations This Christmas (John 1:6-8)

The WORD Became Flesh (Advent 2022)
The WORD Became Flesh (Advent 2022)
Three Invitations This Christmas (John 1:6-8)
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Sermon Outline:

  1. The temptation to see God as uninterested and uninvolved  (John 1:6).
  2. The temptation to see ourselves as self-sufficient and capable (John 1:7).
  3. The temptation to see the world as chiefly about us and our story (John 1:8).

Discussion Questions: 

  • How often do you honestly feel that God is involved in your life? What does forgetting that fact produce in your heart?
  • When are you most tempted to feel self-reliant? When are you most tempted to see yourself as the center of the universe? How does John the Baptist help us find humility?
  • How can you bear witness about the Light this season? Be specific!

**This is week two of Advent 2022.