A sermon, in many churches, is just a word of encouragement relative to the daily struggles in life. It is the opinion of some that since people struggle with various things throughout the week, the last thing one wants to hear is an exhortation to shaping one’s life in accordance with godly standards. This sounds too hard, and enough negativity has already occurred for the saints, that another negative is not desired, much less will it be heard. This, I suggest, was why Israel departed from the Lord’s way many years ago. Consider Deuteronomy 28. There are 68 verses in the chapter, and only 14 can be considered positive, or encouraging. Why did the Lord put this kind of “out of balance” on His exhortations? It was a warning, but it was also a prophecy (31:29). Godly sermons are to focus on godly exhortations that have both a positive and negative quality to them. When the Lord said something about marriage and divorce, the saints are to hear what the Lord said and be warned. When the Lord said something about the promise of heaven, the saints are to hear and be encouraged. Let us preach and insist on only biblical sermons.
A Nashville woman once told me, “Brother So-and-so is my favorite preacher; he is such a good story teller.” It was Spurgeon who said illustrations in a sermon are like windows, but a sermon should not be all windows. A good story helps at times, but I’ve heard sermons that were built several stories too high. With Jesus, every parable had a point and the point was made to pierce complacent consciences and prick sin-hardened hearts. Today, every story has another. Preachers rise and stand before half-empty pews and parrot pious phrases and repeat revised refrains until the time is up, the money collected, and the sleepers awake. What is needed today is not another storyteller, but a man with a soul-piercing, Christ-centered, heaven-sent message from God. This is Just-a-Minute
I have four different tapes (yes, the VHS kind) filled with sermons preached by Andrew Connally during various lectureships and I’m looking to unload them if someone can put them to good use. You can take one or all four if you like.
The first tape contains the topics of:
- The Challenge of Matthew 19:9
- The Challenge of Developing Teenagers as God Would Have Them
- Matthew 16
- Paul’s Mode of Preaching and Practice (1 Thessalonians 2:1-12)
- 1 Corinthians 1:10 – God’s Plan for Solving Problems
- 1 Corinthians 1:21 – God’s Plan for Evangelism
- 1 Corinthians 3:1-9 – Is God Pleased When We Fail to Grow?
The second tape contains the topics of:
- Worldliness in the Church
- How to Build a Strong Church
- An Exposition of Revelation Twenty
- The Spirit of Compromise
- In the Strength of His Might
- I Came to Cast Fire on the Earth
- Freedom Through Repentance
- Mightily Grew the Word of God and Prevailed
The third tape contains the topics of:
- Joseph, the Optimist Who Sorrow was Turned to Joy
- Book of Joshua
- Book of Joshua
- Book of Joshua
- Book of Zephaniah
- God is Not the Source of Evil, but of Good (James 1:13-18)
- The Inspiration of the Bible
- The Words Which I Have Spoken Shall Judge You
The fourth tape contains the topics of:
- Will Your Children go to Heaven
- The Kind of Preaching Jesus Wants
- The Judgment and the Great Invitation (Matthew 11)
- The Family as God Would Have It
- Knowledge of Faith
- Book of 1 John
- Book 2 John
- Book of 3 John
I’ll keep these around for a few weeks incase someone takes the offer, so if you’re interested leave a reply.
The other day I was sitting in front of the box-fan cooling down after exercising. As I was sitting I looked up at the table (in the Cain Room) and took down the Bible beside the bed, opened it up, and look at the inside front cover. Inside the front cover were notes Wilma Cain made concerning what makes a pure church. Let me share those with you.
1. Let every member be consecrated to God—1 Peter 2:9-10
2. Let every disciple separate from all sin—2 Timothy 2:19
3. Let every evangelist condemn sin wherever found—2 Timothy 4:1-2
4. Let elders exercise discipline against all who sin—2 Thessalonians 3:6
5. Let every congregation correct all wrongs—1 Corinthians 5:7
6. Let all study to gain better understanding of the Word—Ephesians 4:17-18
7. Let Christians remember that all sin is excluded from heaven—Revelation 22:15
8. [The] Bible contains all things desirable for man—Abe Lincoln.
I do not know how old the writing is inside the front cover of the Bible is, but I do know the date that Bert (her husband) gave her this particular Bible (12.25.1943).
Many of you remember Wilma for the great lady she was (in my biased opinion), and it was the case that every now and again she would give me her opinion on some varied thing—even when I did not ask! If she lived in accordance with the words above—and there is no reason to think she did not—then she would have made a great contribution to the Lord’s church, and the sermon (or Bible class) from which she learned this is a good sermon for her to preach to us today. RT
Here’s a bare bones sermon outline based off a commonly used saying that I plan on preaching sometime in the future, Lord willing that is. Give it a look and see what you think:
Would You Look At That?
There are some things the Bible encourages us to not look at, but at the same time there are some things it encourages us to look at. Here are just a few:
We are to look at the things that are not seen (2 Corinthians 4:18)
We are to look out for things beneficial to others (Philippians 2:4)
We are to look for the return of Christ (Titus 2:13; Hebrews 9:28)
We are to look into the Law of liberty (James 1:25)
We are to look for new heavens and earth (2 Peter 2:13)
We are to look inward (2 John 8)
There are other verses in the Bible that follow this theme so there’s plenty of room and opportunity to add and to take away from the references given. And besides this outline, you can make another one by doing just the opposite and looking up the things that I mentioned when it comes to the Bible and things we’re encouraged to not look at.
“Truly the light is sweet, And it is pleasant for the eyes to behold the sun; But if a man lives many years And rejoices in them all, Yet let him remember the days of darkness, For they will be many. All that is coming is vanity” (Ecclesiastes 11:7-8).
A. Lay out the purpose of Ecclesiastes.
B. Trace the role of the sun in Ecclesiastes.
1. Christians should value the blessings of walking in the light (John 8:12; 1 John 1:7; Ephesians 1:3).
2. Christians should remember the lessons of the darkness [when we have sinned & come through challenges by God’s grace and mercy] (Romans 12:1-2).
3. Christians should be preparing for the future and be ready for judgment (Revelation 20:11-15).
I will leave the rest to you.
In August, I preached on a lectureship in Hinesville, Georgia on the subject of, “What is an Apostle?” I covered the meaning of the Greek term, looked at Jesus as an apostle and made application to us today in the Great Commission.
The Hinesville congregation has been so kind to put our lessons online. If you have any interest in hearing me preach, you can follow this link and hear my lesson. I pray you are edified, as a result.
Whether it was God’s command to John the Baptist, Jesus’ command during his earthly ministry or his command in the great commission – there is no salvation, relationship with God or spiritual growth without repentance. Matthew 3:2, Matthew 4:17, Luke 24:46-47, Acts 2:37-38 all agree with this principle.
You’ll never find God’s people being promised a new anything worth having unless their willing to get rid of an old something that’s not worth keeping.
The reason so many Christians never grow up/mature/learn how feed from meat of God’s word or teach others is because their minds aren’t made up. It’s because they may be converted to the seat on Sunday morning, but they’re not converted in their heart throughout the rest of the week (Acts 3:19).
Repentance is essential because it begins in the heart, stays in the heart, changes the heart and keeps the heart yearning to please God.
Some old habits die hard for sure, but just make sure they die!
A desire to do God’s will will cause the heart to yearn for repentance – a desire to do our will will cause the heart to spurn repentance.
“If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry. Because of these things the wrath of God is coming upon the sons of disobedience, in which you yourselves once walked when you lived in them.” (Colossians 3:1-7 – NKJV)
Here is an actual “news” headline from 8-17-12 – “Texas School District Eases Up On Dress Code, Allows Male Earrings, Visible Tattoos”
The headline reveals how this nation’s school system is letting us down! It reveals how the average school has a social hub mindset for children on the forefront while education concerns are actually on the back-burner. Although the story didn’t say it, I have no doubt that complaining parents was one of the reasons that the “dress code” was eased up on. Tattoos? These are children!!! Reading, Ritting and Rithmatic have obviously been exchanged for Revealing, Regressing and Rotting leadership both from parents and school districts.
As I’m sure most of you have heard, Neil Armstrong is dead at the age of 82.
The man who made it all the way to the moon wasn’t able to get away from death. No matter where we go, death finds us all. One thing that I can say that I appreciated about Mr. Armstrong is that he was willing to mention mankind’s Creator. While I can’t say I know much about his personal beliefs, I can say that just about the only thing I hear coming from NASA’s mouth today is all about searching for the origins of life – i.e. evolution garbage. Again, I don’t know what Mr. Armstrong’s true position was, but I think it would be great if a man in his position would acknowledge the awe of outer space in a way that points to its Creator.
Here’s a portion of my sermon yesterday about having a passion for our salvation. I thought some of you might be able to use it for a sermon idea:
There’s no such thing as a person who’s saved that wasn’t lost beforehand! Problem is from time to time some people forget who they need to be in Christ, while some of us forget who we used to be before Christ. Every one of us has a B.C. time in our life that we need to remember.
We sing the 1st stanza of Amazing Grace, but do we really believe it? Did God’s grace save an angel, or did it save a wretch? If we expect to be passionate about who we are we’ll have to remember who we were! We were sinners, lost, enemies of God, deserving punishment and bound for Hell.
Some may want to deny this, but we do so at our own peril! Jesus said He came to seek and save the lost – not the found (Luke 19:10). Fact that some of us may want to deny this explains why we might have no passion about our salvation!!!
How can we expect to be passionate about something if we don’t realize how bad we needed it? If we can’t realize how bad we needed it, then one day we will, but it might too late. Remember what Paul said about himself – 1 Timothy 1:15. Too many Christians look at their past like they were the least of sinners instead of the chief.
Forgetting who we were causes us to be someone who doesn’t care about others. It leads to spiritual snobbery! It leads to hypocrisy, hard heartedness and even hatred of others! It leads to self-righteousness, self-justification and self-condemnation! It leads us and others almost anywhere expect to Jesus.
“So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.” (Acts 20:32 – NKJV)
Brief sermon outline preached in Sullivan IL yesterday:
When tragedy hits a community like the one in Aurora, Colorado, we wonder WHY. Our tragedies are small in comparison with the tragedies faced by others in the varied parts of the world; but though they are small (in comparison) they are just as hard hitting as anything else faced by others. How does one address it?
Psalm 38 is a psalm that speaks to the hard-hitting anguish of life’s experiences. Consider it as we consider:
I. WHY? (Why does such evil occur, and where is God when it does occur?)
II. WHERE? (Where is man’s safety?)
III. WHEN? (When will man know?)
Have you ever wondered why God would ask his people for an animal sacrifice even though he knew it wouldn’t remove sin? You’re probably not the only one. I would suspect that there are plenty of people who do not understand why, or maybe the thought had never occurred before now. Either way, it’s a question worth asking because the answer is worth knowing!
If you would like to read an article that revolves around answering that question, then click here: “Why Did God Require Animals to be Sacrificed?”
The article revolves around blood, the human heart, sin, sacrifice and the grace of God. For you fellas who preach, it’s basically a written sermon; take what you find useful. For any one else who would just enjoy the question leading to a deeper study on a personal level or the gathering of notes on the topic, there are plenty of places to do both.
Anybody talk about Whitney Houston yesterday in a sermon or Bible class? I did, since the sad note fit into a sermon point quite well. See my outline, through Google Translate’s bad rendering: http://is.gd/whitneyhouston
[received this in my inbox this morning]
Recently while we were eating lunch after church one Sunday,
my youngest son asked me what the highest number I had ever
counted up to was.
I said I didn’t know. Then I asked him how high he has
“5,372,” came the prompt reply.
“Oh,” I said. “Why did you stop there?”
“The sermon was over.”
I’ve been preaching through Matthew and covered 6:19-34 this morning. Didn’t have 3 points, per se, but stressed the points Jesus did: Don’t trust in earthly treasures, but build up your spiritual “bank account;” keep your eyes healthy (in the pursuit of that which is good); don’t worry about your needs; seek God’s kingdom and His ways first and He’ll take care of you.
The whole family & I are packing up now to leave for Dahlgren (high school week of camp; always a great time!). Have a great week!