Want to go deeper, but not sure where to start?
Each week Robert Jordan, Co-Director of Tuesday Night Adult Education and Discipleship, writes a sermon summary with thought-provoking questions to help you engage with the Word on a deeper level.
Therefore | Wherefore – Ephesians 2:11-22 | Pastor Mike Escalera | Sunday, June 26th 2022 |
Pastor Mike read Ephesians 2:11-22 to introduce our teaching. He opened by reading Psalm 40 using a key verse: “He (God) put a new song in my mouth and a hymn of praise to our God: v3.) This verse supports the theme in our Ephesians teaching because it supports reconciliation, restoration, and the joy of our salvation. Reconciliation as taught by the apostle Paul emphasizes turning from hostility to friendship. This relational turning is the result of Christ’s sacrifice on the cross for our sins. He paid the price of death and satisfied God’s justice. Reflectively, Pastor Mike, asked everyone to think back on their first love with Christ. Our first love and joy experience was firmly based on Jesus being its cornerstone. Additionally, Pastor Mike reflectively asked aloud, just what is God’s heart saying to us in this portion of chapter 2? It’s all about reconciliation and peace only found in Jesus Christ. In opening his teaching, Pastor Mike shared how the apostle Paul opened verse 11 with the word Therefore, or in some translations, Wherefore. Paul also uses the word uncircumcision, the word once used to describe Gentiles, not in relationship with God. Being a part of the uncircumsized were strangers to the covenant promise, or having no hope in God.
Therefore | This Is Who We Are – Ephesians 2:1-10 | Christy Eskes | Sunday, June 19th 2022 |
Our worship director, and guest teacher today, Christy Eskes, opened the teaching with a short review of Part’s 1 and 2 from our Therefore Ephesians study. In part 1, Pastor Doug Brown focused on Location, Location, Location. He compared us to Christ’s dwelling place and our location in His spiritual identity provides for a rich spiritual experience and lifestyle. In part 2, Pastor Jason Surrell emphasized that we’re assigned by God to take care of His dwelling place and to avoid allowing the cultural status quo to influence our spiritual identity in Christ. Today, Christy emphasized using This Is Who We Are as the theme for nurturing and accessing our Spiritual Identity in Christ. She shared five declarations or concepts from Ephesians 2:1-10 that the apostle Paul taught believers to practice in their walk as a believer in Christ. In the verses Christy shared from Paul that as believers we have a past, present, and future. What we were, what we are, and what we will be in who we are.
Therefore | Cooperate with God | Pastor Jason Surrell | Sunday, June 12th 2022 |
Pastor Jason opened our service by reviewing last week’s kick off to the book of Ephesians as taught by Pastor Doug Brown. In verses 1:1-14 the main emphasis was the important reminder from the apostle Paul about our extreme value to God. We learned that our Spiritual Identity in Christ laid the foundation for today’s verses in 15-23. In verses 15-23 the emphasis is multifaceted. Pastor Jason encouraged everyone that our Spiritual Identity in Christ requires commitment and exercise. The apostle Paul is writing to the Ephesians from a prison cell. He is recognizing that the Ephesians are displaying the love of Christ to their community and that display causes Jesus to be joyful. Paul prays saying ‘therefore’ to transition from verses 1-14 to this new section. It emphasizes his excitement and praise for the empowered Ephesian body of believers, their visible faith in Jesus, and their love for other saints. Pastor Jason encouraged us to proactively exercise faith that emphasizes love in action. Pastor Jason read verses 17-19 which he titled God’s Provision for the Church. In these verses the apostle Paul is praying that the Ephesian believers’ comprehension of their resources in God would be evident and to influence the Ephesians to a new level of love.
Therefore | Location! Location! Location! | Pastor Doug Brown | Sunday, June 5th 2022 |
Pastor Doug opened our new series “Therefore” in Ephesians 1:1-14 by emphasizing using real estate terminology Location-Location-Location. These three describe a home or a building’s location as important to its value. Likewise, in the spiritual world our spiritual location is in Christ. We are Christ’s dwelling place. Importantly, it’s unsustainable for us to have 1 foot in the world, and 1 foot in Jesus. We’re called to a residence in Christ that’s 100% in Him. God’s plan of ownership includes having full access to your entire dwelling place. Pastor Doug also shared a brief summary of the city of Ephesus. This city was a Roman city, a commercial export center for Asia, had a huge marketplace for commerce, and an amphitheater. The Apostle Paul wrote the book while he was imprisoned. Ephesians was a circular letter that was to be shared with surrounding churches in other cities. Pastor Doug shared that in Ephesians 1:1-14 Paul divided the verses into three sections. Section 1 is about the believer’s identity in Christ. Section 2 is about the application of that identity in life. Section 3 is about what we must do to live it out.
What Does Love Look Like | Do You Love Me?| Pastor Doug Brown | Sunday, May 29th, 2022
Pastor Doug entitled his message “Do You Love Me?” Opening his message, Pastor Doug celebrated our Memorial Day holiday. He reminded us that anything of value comes at a price. We celebrate the courageous men and women in uniform serving our country that paid the ultimate price of death in service to our country. We honor them for their sacrifices. Pastor Doug opened Do You Love Me by reflectively asking what in life do we love the most? Is it true we look like what we love? Are there individuals listening today that feel unloved or unloveable? Strongholds of negative thinking about identity are in contrast to how God sees us. He sees us as extremely valuable. His Son Jesus demonstrated that value by His death on the cross. Pastor Doug read Romans 8:38-39. These verses remind us that nothing can separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus. In verse 38 the apostle Paul teaches that the present or the future can not separate us from His love. Interestingly, Paul doesn’t include the word “past”. Jesus purchased our past and it’s no longer true. Pastor Doug reminded us that when we visit past painful experiences or allow them to become part of our present, we’re to know that the enemy wants to rob us of our present joy and freedom in Jesus. It’s spiritually illegal to return to the past since Jesus purchased it.
What Does Love Look Like | Loving God-Loving Others-Loving Yourself Part 3 | Pastor Craig Lawrence | Sunday, May 22nd, 2022
Pastor Craig opened today’s service by encouraging everyone to connect to God in a deeper, more personal, and regular manner. Despite God’s love for us, Pastor Craig reflectively asked, why is it a challenge for us to connect with God more regularly during our day? Often, Pastor Craig shared that in the pentecostal charismatic church culture, God is portrayed firstly with the attribute of power. However, it’s God’s love that produces a foundational spiritual identity transformation in our walk. To share his life experience for today’s theme of transformation and brain rewiring, Pastor Craig shared how he craved his father’s approval and affection through competitive sports achievement. He shared his experience with basketball team sports. As he experienced growing up with an absentee dad, his craving for affection increased and his sport competitiveness began to harden his heart. He learned not to trust others as he grew into adulthood. It wasn’t until his kids began helping him to open up to possible root causes for his adult behaviors.
What Does Love Look Like | Love in Our Pain | Damian Dyer | Sunday, May 15th 2022 |
Our guest teacher, co-director of Tuesday Night classes, Damian Dyer, provided our teaching in our continuing series What Does Love Look Like. Today’s topic “Love in Our Pain” demonstrated God’s love toward us, what does it look like, and helped us to see God’s love in our pain is bigger than we often can comprehend. Damian highlighted the verses from Romans 8:28-39. He pointed out that when we experience the pain and struggles of life we can trust that God is our source of love and healing. Often in life, pain and struggles may cause us to question God’s purpose for our life within the specific pain we are experiencing. Often our pain and struggles may cause anger to rise up in us toward God. Damian used the experiences we read about in the Old Testament about the character Job. In the book of Job, we see this individual experiencing a huge amount of pain.
What does love look like? | Home On the CornerStone | Pastor Leah Surrell | Mother’s Day | Sunday, May 8th 2022
Pastor Leah entitled her teaching, Home On the Cornerstone. Her teaching theme was that our spiritual homes, if built on loving God as Jesus taught in the greatest commandments, will produce a spiritual home with a firm foundation. Pastor Leah opened her theme by sharing how her family purchased land to build a home on. The year was 1984 and she was 9 years old. She shared pictures of the various stages of the construction project. From clearing the land for a foundation to cement pouring, walls, roofing, wall sidings, and landscaping. It was a family project. She shared that building a firm foundation in our spiritual homes is similar to the construction process that she shared. She referred to Matthew 7:24-27.
What does love look like? | Loving God, Loving Others, Loving Yourself – pt 2| Pastor Craig Lawrence | Sunday, May 1st 2022
To kick off the month of May, we celebrated communion and along with Part 2 of our series What Does Love Look Like: Loving God-Loving Others-Loving Yourself. Each person received a handout to support the introduction to the second part of our series. Pastor Mike Escalera encouraged everyone to praise God for loving us, despite when we may have preconceived ideas how much He loves us or when our imaginations of His love may conflict with His word and the scriptural teaching of His love for us. The handout includes an assessment of self esteem and how we love our neighbor. It was created by Bill Gaultiere.