This is part 8 in Creekstone's sermon series in James, The Gospel for Real Life. Listen here: Sometimes you get what you pay for. That is true of my fifteen-year-old, 250,000-mile Volvo V70 that I purchased a few years ago for less than 10% of its original sticker price. Pretty amazing deal! But sometimes … Continue reading Ruined and Restored
Listen: Before leaving for a meeting in Atlanta, I open my Waze app and type in the address of my destination. I’m not ashamed to say that usually I am in desperate need of navigational assistance when driving in the city 🙂 and I like Waze because of its real-time ability to re-route around problematic … Continue reading Six Things to Know About Wisdom
Listen: 500 years ago this coming Tuesday, on October 31, 1517, a Roman Catholic, Augustinian monk and university professor named Martin Luther nailed a list of 95 Theses to the front door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany. These theses were 95 statements that not only challenged the authority of the Pope, but challenged … Continue reading “Open Doors into Paradise”
Listen: In 1998, Jewish Rabbi Joseph Telushkin published a book entitled, Words That Hurt, Words That Heal. His thesis is that words have inherent power and can be used for good or ill; to build up or tear down; to inspire the spirit or crush it. Words can put a baby to sleep or they … Continue reading “Words that Hurt, Words that Heal”
It is practically impossible to include everything you want to say in a sermon in a sermon. After upwards of 30 hours of research, reading, study, reflection, writing, and re-writing and re-writing and re-writing, there is a lot of material that gets left on the cutting room floor. And still, after so many hours of … Continue reading Sermon Follow-Up
Listen: This month, many Christians will celebrate the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation, which was unintentionally, but effectively launched on October 31, 1517, when Martin Luther nailed his famous 95 Theses to the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany. The protestant reformation was a rediscovery of grace, that reconciliation with God is … Continue reading What About Works?
This is message #4 in our Gospel for Real Life sermon series through the letter of James. Listen: As we look toward building a facility on our church property on Highway 60, one aspect of the project is the grading work required to level out the dirt for the foundation of the building. Grading is … Continue reading “Level Ground”
This is message #3 in our Gospel for Real Life sermon series through the letter of James. Listen: Those of you who are runners know how important good form is not only for enjoying running but for avoiding injury. Some of us have a tendency toward pronation or supination when running. Pronation is when your … Continue reading “Walk This Way”
Listen: This is message #2 in our expository series in James, The Gospel for Real Life. I like to fish. Admittedly, I’m not very good at it. But when I do catch a fish and proceed to remove the hook, I kind of feel sorry for the creature. He was hungry, thought he saw an … Continue reading “Resisting the Bait”
Listen: This is message #1 in our study through James, The Gospel for Real Life (TGFRL). I have a huge admiration for firefighters. While most of us instinctively run from fires, they run toward and into them. Totally counterintuitive. But in some ways, we all face fires. Not literal fires. But tests. James calls them … Continue reading “Facing the Fire”
Listen: This message comes with a “spoiler alert.” If you have ever read a movie review online, you have come across a “spoiler warning,” where the reviewer warns you that he is going to give the ending away. This morning, we are going to talk about the end. Not the end of a movie, but … Continue reading How Will History End?
Listen: Remember this? "Here is the church, here is the steeple. Open the doors and see all the people." What is wrong with it? Yeah, it gives the impression that the church is a building. But the church is not a building; it is a people. The church is not a Sunday event we go … Continue reading What is the Church?
Listen: When I was a young lad, I remember watching a TV game show with my grandmother called "To Tell the Truth." Here is how the game worked. Three celebrities would sit across from three contestants. The celebrities would have an opportunity to ask each of the contestants questions in order to figure out which … Continue reading What is the Gospel?
Listen: Beach or mountains? If you had to decide between one or the other as a vacation destination, which would you choose? For some, the answer would be a no brainer. You have a definite preference. For others, you may feel a tension, because you enjoy both the mountains and the beach. Steak or shrimp? … Continue reading Who is the Holy Spirit?
Listen: This is week 4 in an 8-week sermon series we are calling, Foundations: An Introduction to Christian Theology. Today our topic is Christology, or the study of Christ. While Jesus is our focus EVERY Sunday, today we want to slow down a bit and look at some nuances to the person and work of … Continue reading Who is Jesus?
I made a critical mistake in this past Sunday's message. As you know, we are in a sermon series that is examining foundational, essential doctrines of the Christian faith--an introduction to systematic theology of sorts. While doctrine is like a foundation (which is necessary and good), the danger of teaching doctrine is that it can … Continue reading I Made a Critical Mistake in Sunday’s Message
Listen: [Here is an important addendum to this message.] In the mid-14th century, a bacteria called yersinia pestis was carried by fleas from Asia to Europe, being transported on rats that commonly infested merchant ships. As these ships arrived in ports such as Constantinople, Marseilles (mar-say), and Barcelona, the rats would disembark, carrying the infected … Continue reading Pandora’s Box
Listen here: This is part 2 in an 8-week sermon series called Foundations: An Introduction to Christian Theology. Last week we began by asking if there is credible evidence for the existence of a personal, creator God. We discovered that the evidence is overwhelming. That evidence is what we call in theology, General Revelation, how … Continue reading Flying by the Instruments
Listen here: Today we began an 8-week sermon series called Foundations: An Introduction to Christian Theology. We know how important foundations are for buildings. It is the same for us. We all have a foundation for how we think, engage the world and act in it. We call this foundation a worldview. Over the next … Continue reading Does a Personal, Creator God Really Exist?
Listen Here: We all know the final words to practically every Fairy Tale: "And they lived happily ever after." This is everyone's dream. To live "happily ever after." To marry the dream girl. To have the dream job. To live in our dream house. To enjoy dream vacations. To raise dream children. To experience a … Continue reading Happily Ever After (Ruth 4)
Listen here: The story of Ruth and her mother-in-law, Naomi, takes place in ancient Palestine around 1100 B.C. We are going to see that, although the cultural practices were quite different than ours, the human condition is exactly the same. The same problems and the same needs, the same dreams, the same struggles. Last week, … Continue reading “Bold Obedience” (Ruth 3)
Listen here: My parents divorced just months after I was born. In fact, I didn't meet my father until I was about 10. While I spent a few random weekends with him in my childhood, those visits were sporadic and brief, and we rarely talked between visits. Although I knew stuff about him, I really … Continue reading Knowing the Great Goel (Ruth 2:14-23)
Listen here: Ernest Hemingway's first novel, The Sun Also Rises, follows a troupe of characters through Spain in 1920s Europe who represented what became known as "the lost generation." The "lost generation" describes those who came of age during the horrors of WWI, a generation usually identified with those born between 1883 and 1900. Gertrude … Continue reading The Sun Also Rises (Ruth 2:1-13)
Listen here: My 30th high school reunion is this summer in Jackson, Mississippi. I haven't been able to make any of the reunions thus far. So, maybe we'll make it back this year. But probably not. One thing is for sure. The people that return this summer for the reunion will not be the same … Continue reading The Bottom of the J-Curve (Ruth 1:19-22)
Listen here: On October 23, 2015, with sustained winds of 215 miles per hour, Hurricane Patricia became the strongest tropical cyclone ever recorded, making landfall the following day on the western coast of northern, Mexico. Patricia was a "Category 5" hurricane on the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale, which measures a storm's sustained winds. If the … Continue reading “Unrelenting Love” (Ruth 1:6-18)