Nov 6, 2011
Communicating with God

Communicating With God Pastor Sam Floyd Text:  Daniel 6:10-12a, 16-28

  Daniel 6:10-12a, 16-28  NIV 1984                  10 Now when Daniel learned that the decree had been published, he went home to his upstairs room where the windows opened toward Jerusalem. Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before. 11 Then these men went as a group and found Daniel praying and asking God for help. 12 So they went to the king and spoke to him about his royal decree… 16 So the king gave the order, and they brought Daniel and threw him into the lions’ den. The king said to Daniel, “May your God, whom you serve continually, rescue you!”                   17 A stone was brought and placed over the mouth of the den, and the king sealed it with his own signet ring and with the rings of his nobles, so that Daniel’s situation might not be changed. 18 Then the king returned to his palace and spent the night without eating and without any entertainment being brought to him. And he could not sleep.                   19 At the first light of dawn, the king got up and hurried to the lions’ den. 20 When he came near the den, he called to Daniel in an anguished voice, “Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to rescue you from the lions?”                   21 Daniel answered, “O king, live forever! 22 My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me, because I was found innocent in his sight. Nor have I ever done any wrong before you, O king.”                   23 The king was overjoyed and gave orders to lift Daniel out of the den. And when Daniel was lifted from the den, no wound was found on him, because he had trusted in his God. 24 At the king’s command, the men who had falsely accused Daniel were brought in and thrown into             the lions’ den, along with their wives and children. And before they reached the floor of the den, the lions overpowered them and crushed all their bones.                   25 Then King Darius wrote to all the peoples, nations and men of every language throughout the land: “May you prosper greatly!  26 “I issue a decree that in every part of my kingdom people must fear and reverence the God of Daniel.  “For he is the living God and he endures forever; his kingdom will not be destroyed, his dominion will never end. 27 He rescues and he saves; he performs signs and wonders in the heavens and on the earth. He has rescued Daniel from the power of the lions.”                   28 So Daniel prospered during the reign of Darius and the reign of Cyrus the Persian.   Introduction: Ephesians 6:18  NIV 1984 18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.   I.            God communicates through His Word. Psalm 119:11  NIV 1984 11 I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.   A.            His Word is TRUE. John 17:17  NIV 1984 17 Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.   B.            His Word is DIVINELY INSPIRED. 2 Timothy 3:16  NIV 1984 16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,   C.            His Word is INERRANT & INFALLIBLE. Isaiah 55:11  NIV 1984 11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.   D.            His Word is a LIVING BOOK. Hebrews 4:12  NIV 1984 12 For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.   E.            God’s Word is ENOUGH. Hebrews 1:1-2  NIV 1984 1 In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe.   II.            He speaks through the Holy Spirit and Godly CounSEL. (based upon the Bible) John 14:16-18, 25-26  NIV 1984 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be[c] in you. 18 I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 25 “All this I have spoken while still with you. 26 But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Proverbs 1:5  NIV 1984 5 let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance—   III.            We communicate through PRAYER. A.            A pattern for prayer modeled by David and others: Adoration Confession Thanksgiving Supplication   B.            Guidelines for Prayer: 1)            Pray in JESUS’ NAME. John 14:13-14 13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.   2)            Be PERSISTENT. Matthew 7:7 7 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.   3)             Be GENUINE & SINCERE. Matthew 6:5-7 5 “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. 6 But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. 7 And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words.   4)            Pray with FAITH and a PURE HEART. Matthew 21:22 22 If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.” 1 Peter 3:7 7 Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.   5)            Pray for whatever is on your Heart. 1 Peter 5:7 7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.   IV.            Seek to Improve Your Communication with God. Exodus 33:11 11 The LORD would speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks with his friend. Then Moses would return to the camp, but his young aide Joshua son of Nun did not leave the tent.
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  • Nov 6, 2011Communicating with God
    Nov 6, 2011
    Communicating with God

    Communicating With God Pastor Sam Floyd Text:  Daniel 6:10-12a, 16-28

      Daniel 6:10-12a, 16-28  NIV 1984                  10 Now when Daniel learned that the decree had been published, he went home to his upstairs room where the windows opened toward Jerusalem. Three times a day he got down on his knees and prayed, giving thanks to his God, just as he had done before. 11 Then these men went as a group and found Daniel praying and asking God for help. 12 So they went to the king and spoke to him about his royal decree… 16 So the king gave the order, and they brought Daniel and threw him into the lions’ den. The king said to Daniel, “May your God, whom you serve continually, rescue you!”                   17 A stone was brought and placed over the mouth of the den, and the king sealed it with his own signet ring and with the rings of his nobles, so that Daniel’s situation might not be changed. 18 Then the king returned to his palace and spent the night without eating and without any entertainment being brought to him. And he could not sleep.                   19 At the first light of dawn, the king got up and hurried to the lions’ den. 20 When he came near the den, he called to Daniel in an anguished voice, “Daniel, servant of the living God, has your God, whom you serve continually, been able to rescue you from the lions?”                   21 Daniel answered, “O king, live forever! 22 My God sent his angel, and he shut the mouths of the lions. They have not hurt me, because I was found innocent in his sight. Nor have I ever done any wrong before you, O king.”                   23 The king was overjoyed and gave orders to lift Daniel out of the den. And when Daniel was lifted from the den, no wound was found on him, because he had trusted in his God. 24 At the king’s command, the men who had falsely accused Daniel were brought in and thrown into             the lions’ den, along with their wives and children. And before they reached the floor of the den, the lions overpowered them and crushed all their bones.                   25 Then King Darius wrote to all the peoples, nations and men of every language throughout the land: “May you prosper greatly!  26 “I issue a decree that in every part of my kingdom people must fear and reverence the God of Daniel.  “For he is the living God and he endures forever; his kingdom will not be destroyed, his dominion will never end. 27 He rescues and he saves; he performs signs and wonders in the heavens and on the earth. He has rescued Daniel from the power of the lions.”                   28 So Daniel prospered during the reign of Darius and the reign of Cyrus the Persian.   Introduction: Ephesians 6:18  NIV 1984 18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.   I.            God communicates through His Word. Psalm 119:11  NIV 1984 11 I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against you.   A.            His Word is TRUE. John 17:17  NIV 1984 17 Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth.   B.            His Word is DIVINELY INSPIRED. 2 Timothy 3:16  NIV 1984 16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,   C.            His Word is INERRANT & INFALLIBLE. Isaiah 55:11  NIV 1984 11 so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.   D.            His Word is a LIVING BOOK. Hebrews 4:12  NIV 1984 12 For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.   E.            God’s Word is ENOUGH. Hebrews 1:1-2  NIV 1984 1 In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe.   II.            He speaks through the Holy Spirit and Godly CounSEL. (based upon the Bible) John 14:16-18, 25-26  NIV 1984 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be[c] in you. 18 I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 25 “All this I have spoken while still with you. 26 But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Proverbs 1:5  NIV 1984 5 let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance—   III.            We communicate through PRAYER. A.            A pattern for prayer modeled by David and others: Adoration Confession Thanksgiving Supplication   B.            Guidelines for Prayer: 1)            Pray in JESUS’ NAME. John 14:13-14 13 And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.   2)            Be PERSISTENT. Matthew 7:7 7 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.   3)             Be GENUINE & SINCERE. Matthew 6:5-7 5 “And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by men. I tell you the truth, they have received their reward in full. 6 But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. 7 And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words.   4)            Pray with FAITH and a PURE HEART. Matthew 21:22 22 If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.” 1 Peter 3:7 7 Husbands, in the same way be considerate as you live with your wives, and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers.   5)            Pray for whatever is on your Heart. 1 Peter 5:7 7 Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.   IV.            Seek to Improve Your Communication with God. Exodus 33:11 11 The LORD would speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks with his friend. Then Moses would return to the camp, but his young aide Joshua son of Nun did not leave the tent.
  • Oct 30, 2011Knowing the Will of God
    Oct 30, 2011
    Knowing the Will of God

    Knowing the Will of God Pastor Sam Floyd Text:  1 Thessalonians 5:12-24

          1 Thessalonians 5:12-24  ESV                   12We ask you, brothers, to respect those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, 13and to esteem them very highly in love because of their work. Be at peace among yourselves. 14And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all. 15See that no one repays anyone evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to everyone. 16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 19 Do not quench the Spirit. 20Do not despise prophecies, 21but test everything; hold fast what is good. 22Abstain from every form of evil.                   23Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. 24 He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it. Cross references:
    1. 2 Samuel 1:25 : 2 Samuel 1:19
    2. 2 Samuel 1:26 : 1 Sam 18:1, 3
    3. 2 Samuel 1:27 : 2 Samuel 1:25
      I. People look for SIGNS to know God’s will. Judges 6:36-39  NIV 1984 36 Gideon said to God, “If you will save Israel by my hand as you have promised— 37 look, I will place a wool fleece on the threshing floor. If there is dew only on the fleece and all the ground is dry, then I will know that you will save Israel by my hand, as you said.” 38 And that is what happened. Gideon rose early the next day; he squeezed the fleece and wrung out the dew—a bowlful of water. 39 Then Gideon said to God, “Do not be angry with me. Let me make just one more request. Allow me one more test with the fleece. This time, make the fleece dry and the ground covered with dew.”   II. We look for God’s direction in the major areas of life, but God’s will is revealed in our LIFESTYLE. Ephesians 5:17  NIV 1984 17 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. 1 John 2:17  NIV 1984 17 The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever.   A. In Personal PURITY. 1 Thessalonians 4:3-7  NIV 1984 3 It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality; 4 that each of you should learn to control his own body in a way that is holy and honorable, 5 not in passionate lust like the heathen, who do not know God; 6 and that in this matter no one should wrong his brother or take advantage of him. The Lord will punish men for all such sins, as we have already told you and warned you. 7 For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life.   B. In THANKSGIVING, REJOICING and PRAYER. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18  NIV 1984 16 Be joyful always; 17 pray continually; 18 give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.   C. In BIBLICAL IMPERITIVES. (Kindness, Truthfulness, Honesty, Integrity, Forgiveness, no anger, abuse, bitterness, slander, drunkenness, off-color speech) Ephesians 4:25-32  NIV 1984 25 Therefore each of you must put off falsehood and speak truthfully to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body. 26 “In your anger do not sin”[a]: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, 27 and do not give the devil a foothold. 28 He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need. 29 Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.   D. Grey area questions: * Is this activity forbidden in the Word of God?  (Psalm 119:9) * Is this activity forbidden by the civil authorities?  (Romans 13:1-2) * Does this activity have a good appearance?  (1 Peter 2:12) * Is this activity commended by my conscience?  (2 Timothy 1:3) * Is this activity profitable or useful?  (1 Corinthians 6:12) * Will this activity enslave or control me?  (1 Corinthians 6:12) * Will this activity harm my body?  (1 Corinthians 6:19) * Will this activity cause another Christian to stumble?  (Romans 14:23) * Will this activity glorify God?  (1 Corinthians 10:31) * Is this what I would want to be doing when Christ returns?  (1 John 3:3)   III. Wise decisions can be made by prayerfully:   A. Reading the CIRCUMSTANCES carefully. Genesis 50:17b-20  NIV 1984 When their message came to him, Joseph wept. 18 His brothers then came and threw themselves down before him. “We are your slaves,” they said. 19 But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I in the place of God? 20 You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives. B. Using your God-given COMMON SENSE. Ephesians 5:15  NIV 1984 15 Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise,   C. Soliciting godly COUNCIL. Proverbs 1:5  NIV 1984 5 let the wise listen and add to their learning, and let the discerning get guidance— Proverbs 19:20  NIV 1984 20 Listen to advice and accept instruction, and in the end you will be wise.   D. Considering your own personal DESIRE. Psalm 37:3-4  NIV 1984 3 Trust in the LORD and do good; dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture. 4 Delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.   E. Submitting your plans completely to God. James 4:13-15  NIV  1984 13 Now listen, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.” 14 Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. 15 Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that.”
  • Oct 23, 2011Dealing With Your Doubts
    Oct 23, 2011
    Dealing With Your Doubts

     Dealing With Your Doubts Pastor Gabe Barber Text:   Matthew 14:22-33

      Hebrews 11:1  NASB 1995 1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. C.S. Lewis: “Now that I am a Christian, I do have moods in which the whole thing looks very improbable; but when I was an atheist I had moods in which Christianity looked terribly probable.” Os Guiness: “The shame is not that people have doubts, but that they are ashamed of them.”   I.            Doubt is not the same as UNBELIEF. Mark 9:22-24  NASB 1995 22 It has often thrown him both into the fire and into the water to destroy him. But if You can do anything, take pity on us and help us!"  23 And Jesus said to him, " 'If You can?' All things are possible to him who believes."  24 Immediately the boy's father cried out and said, "I do believe; help my unbelief." John 20:26-29  NASB 1995 26 After eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus came, the doors having been shut, and stood in their midst and said, "Peace be with you."  27 Then He said to Thomas, "Reach here with your finger, and see My hands; and reach here your hand and put it into My side; and do not be unbelieving, but believing."  28 Thomas answered and said to Him, "My Lord and my God!"  29 Jesus said to him, "Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed." A.            FACTUAL Doubt: B.            EMOTIONAL Doubt: C.            VOLITIONAL Doubt:   II.            Doubt is UNHEALTHY when we use it as a SMOKESCREEN or BARRIER. John 12:42-43  NASB 1995 42 Nevertheless many even of the rulers believed in Him, but because of the Pharisees they were not confessing Him, for fear that they would be put out of the synagogue;  43 for they loved the approval of men rather than the approval of God.   III.            Doubt is HEALTHY when it motivates us to PURSUE TRUTH. Habakkuk 2:1  NASB 1995 1 I will stand on my guard post And station myself on the rampart; And I will keep watch to see what He will speak to me, And how I may reply when I am reproved. Proverbs 14:15  NASB 1995 15 The naive believes everything, But the sensible man considers his steps. Matthew 14:28-31  NASB 1995 28 Peter said to Him, "Lord, if it is You, command me to come to You on the water."  29 And He said, "Come!" And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus.  30 But seeing the wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, "Lord, save me!"  31 Immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and *said to him, "You of little faith, why did you doubt?" St. Augustine: “Understanding is the reward of faith. Therefore seek not to understand that you may believe, but believe that you may understand.” Gary Parker: “If faith never encounters doubt, if truth never struggles with error, if good never battles with evil, how can faith know its own power? In my own pilgrimage, if I have to choose between a faith that has stared doubt in the eye and made it blink, or a naïve faith that has never known the firing line of doubt, I will choose the former every time.”
  • Oct 16, 2011Responding to God
    Oct 16, 2011
    Responding to God

    Responding to God Pastor Gabe Barber Text: James 1:19-27

    Dante Alighieri (13th Century Italian poet): “If those who accuse me had their eyes and minds on God, as I had, they too would have failed to notice events around them, and they most certainly would not have noticed what I was doing.” Matthew 22:37-40  NASB 1995 37 And He said to him, " 'YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND.'  38 This is the great and foremost commandment.  39 The second is like it, 'YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.'  40 On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets."   I.            We Respond to God with WORSHIP. Exodus 34:5-8  NASB 1995 The LORD descended in the cloud and stood there with him as he called upon the name of the LORD.  Then the LORD passed by in front of him and proclaimed, "The LORD, the LORD God, compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in lovingkindness and truth;  who keeps lovingkindness for thousands, who forgives iniquity, transgression and sin; yet He will by no means leave the guilty unpunished, visiting the iniquity of fathers on the children and on the grandchildren to the third and fourth generations."  Moses made haste to bow low toward the earth and worship. A.W. Tozer: “What is worship? Worship is to feel in your heart and express in some appropriate manner a humbling but delightful sense of admiring awe and astonished wonder and overpowering love in the presence of that most ancient Mystery, that Majesty which philosophers call the First Cause, but which we call Our Father Which Art in Heaven.” II.            We Respond to God with LOVE. 1 John 4:7, 19  NASB 1995 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God... 19 We love, because He first loved us. 1 Corinthians 13:4-7  NASB 1995 Love is patient, love is kind and is not jealous; love does not brag and is not arrogant,  does not act unbecomingly; it does not seek its own, is not provoked, does not take into account a wrong suffered,  does not rejoice in unrighteousness, but rejoices with the truth;  bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.   III.            We Respond to God with FEAR. 1 Peter 2:17  NASB 1995 17 Honor all people, love the brotherhood, fear God, honor the king. Mark 4:35-41  NASB 1995 35 On that day, when evening came, He said to them, "Let us go over to the other side."  36 Leaving the crowd, they took Him along with them in the boat, just as He was; and other boats were with Him.  37 And there arose a fierce gale of wind, and the waves were breaking over the boat so much that the boat was already filling up.  38 Jesus Himself was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they woke Him and said to Him, "Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?"  39 And He got up and rebuked the wind and said to the sea, "Hush, be still." And the wind died down and it became perfectly calm.  40 And He said to them, "Why are you afraid? Do you still have no faith?"  41 They became very much afraid and said to one another, "Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey Him?" Proverbs 2:3-5  NASB 1995 3 For if you cry for discernment, Lift your voice for understanding; 4 If you seek her as silver And search for her as for hidden treasures; 5 Then you will discern the fear of the LORD And discover the knowledge of God.   IV.             We Respond to God with OBEDIENCE and SERVICE. 1 Samuel 15:22  NASB 1995 22 Samuel said, "Has the LORD as much delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices as in obeying the voice of the LORD? Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, And to heed than the fat of rams. Deuteronomy 10:12-13  NASB 1995 12 "Now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require from you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways and love Him, and to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul,  13  and to keep the LORD'S commandments and His statutes which I am commanding you today for your good? Romans 5:20-6:2  NASB 1995 20 The Law came in so that the transgression would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more,  21 so that, as sin reigned in death, even so grace would reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord. What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase?  May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it? James 1:23-25  NASB 1995 23 For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror;  24 for once he has looked at himself and gone away, he has immediately forgotten what kind of person he was.  25 But one who looks intently at the perfect law, the law of liberty, and abides by it, not having become a forgetful hearer but an effectual doer, this man will be blessed in what he does.
  • Oct 9, 2011Believing in God
    Oct 9, 2011
    Believing in God

    Believing in God Pastor Gabe Barber Text:   John 3:3-7, 16-21

    Acts 16:31  NASB 1995 31 They said, ``Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household."   I. Genuine Belief in God is About Faith (or Trust).

    Hebrew: ‘amanà to trust, stand fast, or uphold with firmness

    Hebrews 11:1  NASB 1995 1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. Isaiah 43:10  NASB 1995

    10 You are My witnesses," declares the LORD, And My servant whom I have chosen, So that you may know and believe Me And understand that I am He. Before Me there was no God formed, And there will be none after Me.

    Greek: pisteuoà to be persuaded or convinced of; to place confidence in, to trust

    James 2:19  NASB 1995 19 You believe that God is one. You do well; the demons also believe, and shudder. Romans 10:9  NASB 1995 9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved;   II. Genuine Belief in God is Always Progressing. Romans 1:20  NASB 1995 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. Acts 10:1-2, 11:13-14  NASB 1995 1 Now there was a man at Caesarea named Cornelius, a centurion of what was called the Italian cohort, 2 a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, and gave many alms to the Jewish people and prayed to God continually. 13 And he reported to us how he had seen the angel standing in his house, saying, “Send to Joppa and have Simon, who is also called Peter, brought here; 14 and he will speak words to you by which you will be saved, you and all your household.”

    C.S. Lewis: “I believe in Christianity as I believe that the sun has risen: not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else.”

      III. Genuine Belief in God is Rooted in the Object of Our Belief. John 20:30-31  NASB 1995 30 Therefore many other signs Jesus also performed in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; 31 but these have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing you may have life in His name. Ephesians 2:8-9  NASB  1995 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. C.H. Spurgeon: “I would recommend you either believe in God up to the hilt, or else do not believe at all. Believe this book of God, every letter of it, or else reject it. There is no logical standing place between the two. Be satisfied with nothing less than a faith that swims in the deeps of divine revelation; a faith that paddles about the edge of the water is poor faith at best. It is little better than a dry-land faith, and is not good for much."
  • Oct 2, 2011Being a Friend of God
    Oct 2, 2011
    Being a Friend of God

    Being A Friend of God Pastor Sam Floyd Text:   1 Samuel 18:1-4; 19:1-5;  20:41-42; 2 Samuel 1:25-27

      1 Samuel 18:1-4  ESV 1As soon as he had finished speaking to Saul, the soul of Jonathan was knit to the soul of David, and Jonathan loved him as his own soul. 2And Saul took him that day and would not let him return to his father’s house. 3Then Jonathan made a covenant with David, because he loved him as his own soul. 4And Jonathan stripped himself of the robe that was on him and gave it to David, and his armor, and even his sword and his bow and his belt. 1 Samuel 19:1-5, 41-42  ESV 1And Saul spoke to Jonathan his son and to all his servants, that they should kill David. But Jonathan, Saul’s son, delighted much in David. 2And Jonathan told David, "Saul my father seeks to kill you. Therefore be on your guard in the morning. Stay in a secret place and hide yourself. 3And I will go out and stand beside my father in the field where you are, and I will speak to my father about you. And if I learn anything I will tell you." 4And Jonathan spoke well of David to Saul his father and said to him, "Let not the king sin against his servant David, because he has not sinned against you, and because his deeds have brought good to you. 5For he took his life in his hand and he struck down the Philistine, and the LORD worked a great salvation for all Israel. You saw it, and rejoiced. Why then will you sin against innocent blood by killing David without cause?" 1 Samuel 20:41-42  ESV 41And as soon as the boy had gone, David rose from beside the stone heap and fell on his face to the ground and bowed three times. And they kissed one another and wept with one another, David weeping the most. 42Then Jonathan said to David, "Go in peace, because we have sworn both of us in the name of the LORD, saying, 'The LORD shall be between me and you, and between my offspring and your offspring, forever.'" And he rose and departed, and Jonathan went into the city. 2 Samuel 1:25-27  ESV 25 "How the mighty have fallen in the midst of the battle! "Jonathan lies slain on your high places. 26I am distressed for you, my brother Jonathan; very pleasant have you been to me; your love to me was extraordinary, surpassing the love of women. 27 "How the mighty have fallen, and the weapons of war perished!" Cross references:
    1. 2 Samuel 1:25 : 2 Samuel 1:19
    2. 2 Samuel 1:26 : 1 Sam 18:1, 3
    3. 2 Samuel 1:27 : 2 Samuel 1:25
      I. Human Friendship is a precious thing.   II. Friendship with God begins with INTIMACY.   A. More than a SERVANT. John 15:11-15  ESV 11These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full. 12 "This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends. 14You are my friends if you do what I command you. 15 No longer do I call you servants, for the servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all that I have heard from my Father I have made known to you.   B. Friendship is a relationship of Trust. Hebrews 11:17-19  ESV 17By faith Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was in the act of offering up his only son, 18of whom it was said, "Through Isaac shall your offspring be named." 19 He considered that God was able even to raise him from the dead, from which, figuratively speaking, he did receive him back.   C. Friendship is a GROWING, DYNAMIC RELATIONSHIP. Philippians 3:7-9  ESV 7But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. 8Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ 9and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith— Luke 10:38-42  ESV 38Now as they went on their way, Jesus entered a village. And a woman named Martha welcomed him into her house. 39And she had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to his teaching. 40But Martha was distracted with much serving. And she went up to him and said, "Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Tell her then to help me." 41But the Lord answered her, "Martha, Martha, you are anxious and troubled about many things, 42but one thing is necessary. Mary has chosen the good portion, which will not be taken away from her."   III. Friendship with God will only be sustained with OBEDIENCE or SUBMISSION or SURRENDER.   A. True Friendship brings a positive response to God’s direction. Genesis 12:4; 22:3  ESV 4So Abram went, as the LORD had told him, and Lot went with him. Abram was seventy-five years old when he departed from Haran. 3So Abraham rose early in the morning, saddled his donkey, and took two of his young men with him, and his son Isaac. And he cut the wood for the burnt offering and arose and went to the place of which God had told him.   B. Friendship with God isn’t Buddy-Buddy, but Commitment and Obedience. John 14:15  ESV 15 "If you love me, you will keep my commandments. John 15:14, 17  ESV 14You are my friends if you do what I command you. 17These things I command you, so that you will love one another.   C. Excuses destroy Friendship with God. See Luke 14:12-24 Luke 9:59-62  ESV 59To another he said, "Follow me." But he said, "Lord, let me first go and bury my father." 60And Jesus said to him, "Leave the dead to bury their own dead. But as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God." 61Yet another said, "I will follow you, Lord, but let me first say farewell to those at my home." 62Jesus said to him, "No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God."   D. Friends of God are submitted to Him. 2 Timothy 4:7  ESV 7 I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Philippians 1:21  ESV 21For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. Acts 20:24  ESV 24But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God.
  • Sep 25, 2011What is God Really Like?
    Sep 25, 2011
    What is God Really Like?

    What is God Really Like? Pastor Sam Floyd Text:   Psalm 91

     

    Psalm 91  ESV

    1He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. 2I will say to the LORD, "My refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust."

    3For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the deadly pestilence. 4He will cover you with his pinions, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness is a shield and buckler. 5 You will not fear the terror of the night, nor the arrow that flies by day, 6nor the pestilence that stalks in darkness, nor the destruction that wastes at noonday.

    7A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you. 8You will only look with your eyes and see the recompense of the wicked.

    9Because you have made the LORD your dwelling place— the Most High, who is my refuge — 10 no evil shall be allowed to befall you, no plague come near your tent.

    11 For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways. 12On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone. 13You will tread on the lion and the adder; the young lion and the serpent you will trample underfoot.

    14"Because he holds fast to me in love, I will deliver him; I will protect him, because he knows my name. 15When he calls to me, I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will rescue him and honor him. 16With long life I will satisfy him and show him my salvation."

      I. How you picture God makes all the difference in your trust level with Him and often defines your behavior.   II. God frequently gave similes to describe Himself to mankind:
    • God is a ROCK – Psalm 18:2
    • God is a REFUGE – 2 Samuel 22:31
    • God is a WARRIOR – Psalm 68:1
    • God is a SHEPHERD – John 10:11
    • God is an EAGLE – Matthew 23:37
    • God is a SHIELD – Psalm 115:9-11
    • God is a REDEEMER – 1 Peter 1:18-19
    • God is a HIDING PLACE – Psalm 32:7
    • God is a FOUNTAIN – Jeremiah 2:13, John 7:37
    • God is a HUSBAND – Isaiah 54:5
    • God is a VINEDRESSER – John 15:1-5
      A. God is our ROCK – our REFUGE – our HIDING PLACE. Psalm 18:2  ESV 2The LORD is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. 2 Samuel 22:31  ESV 31This God— his way is perfect; the word of the LORD proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him. 2 Samuel 22:1-2; 23:14; 24:1-2  ESV 1David departed from there and escaped to the cave of Adullam. And when his brothers and all his father’s house heard it, they went down there to him. 2 And everyone who was in distress, and everyone who was in debt, and everyone who was bitter in soul, gathered to him. And he became captain over them. And there were with him about four hundred men. 14And David remained in the strongholds in the wilderness, in the hill country of the wilderness of Ziph. And Saul sought him every day, but God did not give him into his hand. 1 When Saul returned from following the Philistines, he was told, "Behold, David is in the wilderness of Engedi." 2Then Saul took three thousand chosen men out of all Israel and went to seek David and his men in front of the Wildgoats’ Rocks. Psalm 32:7  ESV 7You are a hiding place for me; you preserve me from trouble; you surround me with shouts of deliverance.   B. God is our SHEPHERD – an EAGLE John 10:11  ESV 11 I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. Matthew 23:37  ESV 37 "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not! Psalm 91:4a  ESV 4He will cover you with his pinions, and under his wings you will find refuge;   C.            God is the VINEDRESSER. John 15:1-5  ESV 1"I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. 2 Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. 3Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. 5I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. John 10:10  ESV 10The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. Romans 8:29  ESV 29For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers. John 15:16  ESV 16You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit and that your fruit should abide, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name, he may give it to you.
  • Sep 11, 2011Gods Plan for the Ages
    Sep 11, 2011
    Gods Plan for the Ages

    God’s Plan for the Ages Pastor Sam Floyd Text: Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, 8, 11, 12:1; Romans 11:33-36

      Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, 11  NIV 1984 1 There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: 2 a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, 3 a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, 4 a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, 5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain, 6 a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, 7 a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, 8 a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace. 11 He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the hearts of men; yet they cannot fathom what God has done from beginning to end. Ecclesiastes 12:1  NIV 1984 1 Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come and the years approach when you will say, “I find no pleasure in them” Romans 11:33-36  NIV  1984 33 Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out! 34 “Who has known the mind of the Lord?  Or who has been his counselor?” 35 “Who has ever given to God, that God should repay him?” 36 For from him and through him and to him are all things.  To him be the glory forever! Amen.

    I. In the Beginning, God Created Man Innocent, without SinGenesis 2:7, 25  NIV 1984 7 the LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being. 25 The man and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.   II. But Sin Already Existed. Genesis 2:16-17  NIV 1984 16 And the LORD God commanded the man, “You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die.” Genesis 3:1-4  NIV 1984                   1 Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”                   2 The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, 3 but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’”                   4 “You will not surely die,” the serpent said to the woman. 5 “For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”   III. Man’s Fall Brought God’s Redemptive Plan into Effect. Genesis 3:15  NIV 1984 15 And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers; he will crush your head, and you will strike his heel.” Ephesians 1:4-6  NIV  1984 4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— 6 to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.   A. The death of Jesus Christ makes it possible for sinful man to be in fellowship with Holy God. Romans 3:23-24  NIV  1984 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. Ephesians 1:7-8  NIV  1984 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace 8 that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding.   B. God’s Holy Spirit leads the believer and guides him into all truth and righteousness. John 16:13  NIV  1984 13 But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. Galatians 2:20-21  NIV  1984 20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!”   C. God’s faithful love and grace hold the believer through all of life. John 10:27-29  NIV  1984 27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand.   IV. God’s Plan Will Culminate in a Cataclysmic Show-Down between Good and Evil.   A. The followers of Evil will share in their leader’s banishment. Revelation 20:9-10, 14-15  NIV  1984 9 They marched across the breadth of the earth and surrounded the camp of God’s people, the city he loves. But fire came down from heaven and devoured them. 10 And the devil, who deceived them, was thrown into the lake of burning sulfur, where the beast and the false prophet had been thrown. They will be tormented day and night for ever and ever. 14 Then death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. The lake of fire is the second death. 15 If anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. Revelation 21:8  NIV  1984 8 But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars—their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death.”   B. The armies of Good will share in their Leader’s Victory! Revelation 21:3-4  NIV  1984 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4 He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Revelation 22:3-5  NIV  1984 3 No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. 4 They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. 5 There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever.
  • Sep 4, 2011God and the Presence of Evil
    Sep 4, 2011
    God and the Presence of Evil

    God & The Presence of Evil Pastor Gabe Barber Text:   Psalm 5:1-12

    Millard Erickson (modern theologian): Evil is “…the most difficult intellectual problem for the Christian faith.”

     Epicurus (ancient Greek philosopher):Either God wants to abolish evil, and cannot; or he can, but does not want to; or he cannot and does not want to. If he wants to, but cannot, he is impotent. If he can, and does not want to, he is wicked. But, if God both can and wants to abolish evil, then how comes evil into the world?”

                      I. God is not the AUTHOR of EVIL. Romans 5:12  NIV 1984 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned—   II. God’s Goodness is MEASURED in ETERNITY. Revelation 22:3  NIV 1984 No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. Revelation 21:4  NIV 1984 He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.

    C.S. Lewis: “God whispers to us in our pleasures, speaks in our conscience, but shouts in our pains. It is his megaphone to rouse a deaf world.”

    Mother Theresa: “In light of heaven, the worst suffering on earth, a life full of the most atrocious tortures on earth, will be seen to be no more serious than one night in an inconvenient motel.” Job 2:9-10  NIV 1984 His wife said to him, "Are you still holding on to your integrity? Curse God and die!" 10 He replied, "You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?" In all this, Job did not sin in what he said. Job 38:1-7 Then the LORD answered Job out of the storm. He said:  2 "Who is this that darkens my counsel with words without knowledge?  3 Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me.  4 "Where were you when I laid the earth's foundation? Tell me, if you understand.  5 Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it?  6 On what were its footings set, or who laid its cornerstone--  7 while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy?   III. God SHARES in our SUFFERING. Isaiah 40:27-31  NIV 1984 27 Why do you say, O Jacob, and complain, O Israel, "My way is hidden from the LORD; my cause is disregarded by my God"?  28 Do you not know? Have you not heard? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom.  29 He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.  30 Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall;  31 but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. New International Commentary on the Old Testament, Isaiah 40-66, p.74: “To wait on him is to admit that we have no other help, either in ourselves or in another. Therefore we are helpless until he acts. By the same token, to wait on him is to declare our confidence in his eventual action on our behalf. Thus waiting in Hebrew is not merely killing time but a life of confident expectation. Those who give up their own frantic efforts to save themselves and turn expectantly to God will be able to replace or exchange their worn-out strength for new strength. How like God: he takes the useless and gives back the good.”
  • Aug 28, 2011The Trinity of God
    Aug 28, 2011
    The Trinity of God

    The Tri-Unity of God Pastor Samuel Floyd Text: Mark 12:28-34, Matthew 3:16-17, John 17:9-12, 20-23

    Mark 12:28-34 NIV 1984                   28 One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”                   29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”                   32 “Well said, teacher,” the man replied. “You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. 33 To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”                   34 When Jesus saw that he had answered wisely, he said to him, “You are not far from the kingdom of God.” And from then on no one dared ask him any more questions. Matthew 3:16-17  NIV 1984 16 As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on him. 17 And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.” John 17:6-12, 20-23  NIV 1984 6 “I have revealed you to those whom you gave me out of the world. They were yours; you gave them to me and they have obeyed your word. 7 Now they know that everything you have given me comes from you. 8 For I gave them the words you gave me and they accepted them. They knew with certainty that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me. 9 I pray for them. I am not praying for the world, but for those you have given me, for they are yours. 10 All I have is yours, and all you have is mine. And glory has come to me through them. 11 I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name—the name you gave me—so that they may be one as we are one. 12 While I was with them, I protected them and kept them safe by that name you gave me. None has been lost except the one doomed to destruction so that Scripture would be fulfilled. 20 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21 that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: 23 I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.   I. God is revealed as ONE.   A. Monotheism separated Israel from all other nations Exodus 3:14  NIV 1984 14 God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’” Deuteronomy 6:4 NIV 1984 4 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God, the LORD is one.   B. When Messiah came – it was God coming to man. Isaiah 7:14  NIV 1984 14 Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel. Matthew 1:21-23  NIV 1984 21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.” 22 All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: 23 “The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” — which means, “God with us.”   C. When Jesus taught, He maintained unity with the Father. John 10:30 NIV 1984 30 I and the Father are one.” John 14:7-11 NIV 1984 7 If you really knew me, you would know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.” 8 Philip said, “Lord, show us the Father and that will be enough for us.” 9 Jesus answered: “Don’t you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10 Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work. 11 Believe me when I say that I am in the Father and the Father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves. James 2:19 NIV 1984 You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.   II. God is revealed as THREE in ONE.   A. God is revealed as three distinctive persons in one Godhead: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. 2 Corinthians 13:14  NIV 1984 14 May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.   B. The Father is called God. 1 Corinthians 8:6  NIV 1984 6 yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live. John 6:27  NIV 1984 27 Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you. On him God the Father has placed his seal of approval.”   C. The Son is called God. Hebrews 1:8  NIV  1984 8 But about the Son he says, “Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever, and righteousness will be the scepter of your kingdom. Romans 9:5  NIV 1984 5 Theirs are the patriarchs, and from them is traced the human ancestry of Christ, who is God over all, forever praised! Amen.   D. The Holy Spirit is called God. Acts 5:3-4  NIV 1984 3 Then Peter said, “Ananias, how is it that Satan has so filled your heart that you have lied to the Holy Spirit and have kept for yourself some of the money you received for the land? 4 Didn’t it belong to you before it was sold? And after it was sold, wasn’t the money at your disposal? What made you think of doing such a thing? You have not lied to men but to God.”   III. How does this practically WORK?   A. In Creation: Genesis 1:1  NIV 1984 1 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Ephesians 1:11  NIV 1984 11 In him we were also chosen, having been predestined according to the plan of him who works out everything in conformity with the purpose of his will,   B. In Salvation: 1 Peter 1:2  NIV 1984 2 who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, for obedience to Jesus Christ and sprinkling by his blood: Grace and peace be yours in abundance. Ephesians 1:4-5  NIV 1984 4 For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love 5 he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— Ephesians 1:7  NIV 1984 7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace John 16:8  NIV 1984 8 When he comes, he will convict the world of guilt[a] in regard to sin and righteousness and judgment: Ephesians 1:13-14 NIV 1984 13 And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation. Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.   C. In Prayer: Matthew 6:9  NIV 1984 9 “This, then, is how you should pray: “‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, John 16:23-24  NIV 1984 23 In that day you will no longer ask me anything. I tell you the truth, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. 24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete. John 14:14  NIV 1984 14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it. Romans 8:26-27  NIV 1984 26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. 27 And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will.   D. In Our Lives… 1 John 1:7-8 NIV 1984 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. John 17:20-23  NIV 1984 20 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21 that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: 23 I in them and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.