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Resources from the service: Morning Service

Well, what a delight it is to be with the First Pres family. And in many ways, a feeling like this whole weekend has been something of a family reunion seeing so many faces, familiar faces, from the years that my wife, Christy, and I and our children had the privilege of serving in your midst, or maybe more properly, being served by you in the midst of...

Rooted

We are in a section toward the end of the letter now where Paul is applying to the Colossians’ lives the implications of what it means to be united to Jesus Christ, to be “in Christ.” Last time, beginning in verse 18 of chapter 3 through verse 1 of chapter 4, Paul spoke about the Christian family, the household, and the implications of being united to Jesus for...

Rooted

Since about the middle of chapter 2, Paul has been giving us some broad, general exhortations about the nature and character and motives and means of Christian holiness, of growing in sanctification, likeness to Jesus in our lives. Now, beginning in this second half of chapter 3, Paul already actually has been pressing into some particulars. We saw last time his concern for the life of the local...

Rooted

Paul has been offering us some general exhortations about practical Christian living and beginning in verse 18, as we'll see God-willing next week, he's going to get quite a bit more specific with some exhortations about the Christian family and the Christian household. Here he's still in the level of general principle. He has called us, we've seen, to put sin to death, verse 5, to live a...

Rooted

We’re going to be focused on the words of verses 12 through 14. Paul, really since the end of chapter 2, has begun explaining the practical implications for our Christian lives of the great truth of the believer’s union with Jesus Christ. And as we saw when last we were in Colossians in verses 5 through 11 of chapter 3, Paul has begun first with the negative implications...

We'll be reading about one of the several challenges that we find to Jesus in the gospels in a parable that should be familiar to us. I heard a story not that long ago. It was about an FBI operation that was set up to catch a telephone scammer. And in the story there was a woman, she was sweet and mild, an older woman, named Marge. And...

Rooted

Before we read it a little, let me quickly say a word of thanks. Ed and Emily Hartman, I think, are taking a few days well deserved to recover from the busyness of Mission Conference but we do owe them a great debt, as well as Beth Archer and the Missions Conference Committee and all of you who were involved, some of you in unrecognized ways behind the...

Ed asked me to speak on evangelism as we are preparing for this Missions Conference focused on developing a culture of evangelism. And so I thought this morning that I would begin by sharing with you my most recent experience in evangelism. We were in Orlando about a week ago on a sunny, Saturday morning, 75 degrees - a beautiful Florida day. And I was in the backyard...

Rooted

On Sunday mornings we have slowly been making our way through Paul’s letter to the church at Colossae. Our teaching theme, you may remember, this year is “Rooted” - learning to live from our union with Christ. And you will perhaps, at least I hope, have begun to see that’s actually a pretty good summary of the central concern of the letter of Paul to the Colossians. He...

Rooted

But the truth is, the fullness of what you need, verses 9 and 10, is in Jesus Christ. You find it in Christ. In verses 11 and 12, as we saw a few weeks ago, it seems part of the false teaching was an insistence on the need for circumcision. To really follow Jesus, they said you need to be circumcised. But Paul said, “No, no. You have...

Now you may be asking, “Why are we looking at it again, then, if he did such a great job?” My answer is that this week you’re going to get in the mail this little booklet which is our 2019 Global Mission Conference summary. It’s going to tell you all about what’s coming in just a few weeks. I’m asking you to think about this booklet and the...

When I was a child my parents used to read me a little book called, Hinds’ Feet on High Places. And it is the story of a little orphaned deer named, Much-Afraid. And Much-Afraid has deformities on her face and on her hands. She feels and she is unloved. And she lives in the Valley of Humiliation while all the other deer are running freely where Much-Afraid longs...

Rooted

Pilots talk about the three axes of flight. So a plane, an airplane has three axes along which it must travel. There's roll - so the plane can move that way (front to back). There's pitch - so it can move that way (side to side). And there's yaw - so it can move that way (vertical). And a pilot needs to pay attention to the instruments in...

Rooted

Paul's great concern, his burden, is to help strengthen the faith of the Colossians. The Colossians have been under some pressure from false teaching that has crept into their church. And so in verse 6, you'll see he urges them to, having received Christ, to "walk in Him, rooted and built up in Him, established in the faith, just as they had been taught." He wants them to...

Fifteen years ago, Hans Mumm was given a really difficult assignment. Hans Mumm was a civilian but he worked in the Defense Intelligence Service and the Iraq War had just begun. The intelligence community had identified the fifty most important targets, people, in Iraq. The conviction was, that in order to win the war, these fifty men had to be either captured or killed; one way or another...

This is now the fourth Sunday in Advent, and if you’ll look at verse 6 for a moment, you’ll see four titles given by the prophet Isaiah to the coming Messiah, the Lord Jesus Christ. Each is a double-barreled title and our pattern has been over these four weeks to take each title in turn and look at each of the two parts of each title. So far...

Now you will have noticed as we read verse 6 that each of the four titles given has two parts to it. As we’ve considered them together, we’ve simply taken each part of each title in turn which means as we think about the third title today, Everlasting Father, we’ll think first about what it means that Jesus is said to be Everlasting. What are we saying here...

Now it's been my experience that Christmas has an often unexpected way of exposing our vulnerabilities. As we work so very hard to make all our days merry and bright, the inconvenient limitations of our natures keep showing up, sometimes all the more starkly against the mandatory cheerfulness of the season. We feel less permission, don't we, than usual to mourn absent loved ones. And yet their absence...

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