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Resources from the service: Morning Service

 “Taking the Lord’s Supper seriously is something that deep down most of us simply do not do.” That’s the way J.I. Packer begins the last chapter of his book, Taking God Seriously. Well we’re in a series this July on the means of God’s grace. These are the ways that God uses to grow us, to mature us, and to persevere us spiritually. We’re talking about taking God seriously...

For the next several Lord’s Days, some of our assistant ministers will be examining what we call “the means of grace,” that is, the means that God has given us for our use in spiritual growth - the Word of God, both in preaching and teaching and personal devotion, prayer, the sacraments, that is, baptism and the Lord’s Supper, corporate worship. These are the tools that God has...

Do Justice, Love Kindness, Walk Humbly

But today we conclude, as I say, the prophecy of Micah. And one of the things we have noticed, a feature of Micah’s prophecy, is the way that he holds two things together. He sort of alternates back and forth between them. On the one hand there is a remarkable honest and realistic view in Micah of the problems of his own immediate context. The elites in Micah’s...

Do Justice, Love Kindness, Walk Humbly

We have been working our way steadily through the book of Micah and we’ve come to the penultimate chapter this evening. Micah really has been alternating back and forth between an oracle of judgment and rebuke on the people of Israel, the northern kingdom, the people of Judah, the southern kingdom, alternating back and forth between that an a promise of coming blessing in the age of Messiah...

Do Justice, Love Kindness, Walk Humbly

The first half of Micah chapter 5, really, you could say is also about a leadership transition. In verse 1, the Assyrians deliver a devastating insult, really a devastating insult for an ancient near eastern king. Look at verse 1. “With a rod, they strike the judge of Israel on the cheek.” So, it’s a way of graphically demonstrating the utter contempt with which the Assyrians hold this...

Do Justice, Love Kindness, Walk Humbly

If you look at chapter 4 for a minute, you’ll see it falls into two sections, each section distinguished by the time in which it takes place. In verse 1 and again in verse 6 you’ll notice that this first section takes place “in the latter days.” That’s how verse 1 is introduced. Verse 6 continues, “in that day.” So, 1 through 8 is the first section of...

Do Justice, Love Kindness, Walk Humbly

We began to consider the message of Micah a few weeks ago. We turn now to these two chapters were Micah continues his oracle, his message of rebuke and discipline on wayward Israel. Israel is divided into two kingdoms - the northern kingdom takes the name “Israel,” the southern kingdom the name, “Judah,” but they are God’s people. Micah has an oracle of warning and judgment for them...

Before we read the text before us, I want to say simply that whether you recognize it or not you’re investing your life right now towards something. You’re weary pursuing something. Most of us go to bed tired. The question is, “For what? What has drained you? What have you been working toward? What have you been stressed over? What keeps you awake at night?” We’re all investing...

Do Justice, Love Kindness, Walk Humbly

So what do we learn about Micah and Micah's prophecy? Well, first we should take notice of his name. His name means, "Who is like the Lord?" from which I think we can infer at least that it was a godly family from which Micah has come and they're concerned for their child, much like the covenant parents who were having their own children baptized today, is that...

You’ll notice there’s not a single word of prayer in Psalm 103. Psalm 103 is not addressed to God. To whom is this psalm addressed? Verse 1, you’ll see actually it begins and ends the same way, verse 1, “Bless the Lord, O my soul, and all that is within me bless His holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul.” Verse 20, “Bless the Lord, O you...

Rooted

So these remaining verses of Colossians 4, at first glance, may appear slim pickings for rich teaching. But actually, if we take some time and look a little closer, I hope we'll see that what Paul is doing is providing some lived examples that put flesh on the bones of the skeleton of truth that he's been teaching in the body of the letter. We all benefit from...

Rooted

Now in verses 5 and 6, our focus this morning, his concern is still with the promotion of the Gospel and its advance in the world. Only now he seeks to enlist the Colossians themselves as evangelists. So last time in verses 2 through 4 we thought about the place, pattern, and priorities of faithful prayer. Today we’re going to think, in verses 5 and 6, about the...

I want you to have some sense of what kind of story this is. The Christian message centers on the fact of the bodily resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. It’s not a metaphor or a symbol for some abstract spiritual experience. It’s not a myth concocted by the religiously deranged or a deception deployed by the strong to manipulate the weak. It is a fact of...

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...

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