Dec 31 2009

Romans 2:18

Posted by Anthony Crumley

and know his will and approve what is excellent, because you are instructed from the law;

In the previous verse Paul begins to address his own people the Jews, confronting them for their superficial relationship with God.

They were in a wonderfully privileged position because they had the law of God given to them in what we know today as the Old Testament.  As a result, they knew God’s will.  He reveals His will concerning everything we need to know through the bible.  Since they knew His will they were without excuse before Him.  They could not even plead ignorance.

Because they were taught the bible and knew God’s will they were able to accurately distinguish right from wrong.  They could even tell the difference between good things and excellent things.

In Israel, the Old Testament was taught diligently in every city and every synagogue on the sabbath day.  They were very well instructed in the scripture.

With all this privilege they were still not necessarily approved of by God.  He does not approve of those who know His will but those who do His will, not those who approve what is excellent but those who are excellent.  Being taught the bible and having extensive biblical knowledge is only profitable if we live by what we have been taught.

Romans 2:17 – Romans 2:19

Dec 28 2009

The Universe Was Created

Posted by Anthony Crumley

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. … By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible.  (Hebrews 11:1, 3)

Faith is a scary thing.  It puts us in a position to be considered fools by other people.  Faith convinces us of the reality of things that can’t be seen.  It is not possible to prove the things that we believe by faith.

One of the things we know by faith is that God created the entire universe by speaking it into existence.  Everything that was made, God created from nothing.  There was no preexisting matter that He used to create the universe.  He brought all matter into existence at that time of creation.

Believing that God created the universe as described in Genesis 1 puts us in direct contradiction to the scientific theories of today.  Even if we try to stretch out the length of the days to billions of years rather than 24 hours, it still contradicts the scientific theories because the sun is not created until the forth day.  The earth is created on the first day, the atmosphere on the second, plant life on the third and the sun on the forth.  There is no way to shoehorn the timeline of Genesis 1 into the big bang theory.

The assumption of faith is that the bible is correct concerning the origin of the universe.  When the bible and science are at odds on this topic, we need to reevaluate science’s interpretation and understanding of the information they have.  When that information is understood correctly, it should be in agreement with the bible.  Yet, we need to be careful not to twist science to fit the bible.  We simply need to continue working with the scientific information until we understand it properly.

We also need to be careful not to twist the bible to fit science.  We need to continue improving our understanding of science and the bible.  When we come to a complete understanding of both, by faith we believe that they will agree.

Dec 27 2009

Jesus In Us

Posted by Anthony Crumley

Sermon by Joe Clark on Sunday, December 27, 2009.

Dec 21 2009

The Christmas Story

Posted by Anthony Crumley

Sermon by Joe Clark on Sunday, December 20, 2009.

Dec 17 2009

Romans 2:17

Posted by Anthony Crumley

But if you call yourself a Jew and rely on the law and boast in God

After addressing immoral people who reject God in chapter 1 and the moralist in the beginning of chapter 2, Paul now addresses his own people, the Jews, directly.

From this verse to the end of chapter 2, the person who outwardly identifies with God’s chosen people but whose heart rebels against God is called out as the impostor that they are.

These self deceived people put their trust in the fact that they have God’s law and are comfortable that this proves that God accepts them.  Yet, God does not approve of those who possess the law but those who fulfill the law.

Confident that they are acceptable to God, they brag and boast that He is their God.  They think that because they are associated with God through their ancestors that He approves of them as well.  They arrogantly think that God only accepts those born Jewish.  As a result, they reject people who are not Jewish, thinking themselves to be superior.

Today, this same kind of superficial relationship to God through the church is possible as well.  We need to be careful not to “call” ourself a Christian and rely on the bible and boast in God while our heart is far from Him.  We are made acceptable to God by trust in Jesus alone.  Being associated with the church does not make us acceptable to Him.

Romans 2:16Romans 2:18

Dec 15 2009

Sowing And Reaping

Posted by Anthony Crumley

Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up. (Galatians 6:7-9)

This passage brings to mind an obvious but important question. How do we know what is sown to the flesh and what is sown to the Spirit?

As believers in Jesus, we all have the Holy Spirit living within us. His job is to teach us the truth, produce in us righteousness and guide us through life. Everything that He produces in us and guides us to do is sowing to the Spirit.

Everything else we do is sowing to the flesh.

Therefore, we must live our lives submitted to and led by the Holy Spirit. Every step of our walk, every moment of our day, every breath that we take must be done with total dependence on our God and His Spirit living within us.

Dec 14 2009

Broken Toys

Posted by Anthony Crumley

Sermon by Joe Clark on Sunday, December 13, 2009.

Dec 9 2009

Romans 2:16

Posted by Anthony Crumley

on that day when, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men by Christ Jesus.

There will come a day when God judges mankind.  Many people deny it but all will be subject to God’s judgment.

Some say that the Gospel is all about acceptance and tolerance.  They don’t want to see God as a judge or their actions as subject to judgment by His divine standard.  Paul’s gospel message is not like this.  Judgment is as much a part of the gospel as is grace, mercy and forgiveness.  It is because of judgment that the gospel of Jesus is even needed.  If our sin is not going to be judged then Jesus suffer and died for nothing.

God will judge people’s secret sins as well as their public ones.  Even people who seem to be moral and above reproach will be judged by their thoughts, desires and motives.

God will judge by Jesus.  Those who believe in His death, burial and resurrection as payment for their sins will be judged as right before God and will spend eternity with Him.  All others will be judged as the sinners they are and will spend eternity in hell.

Romans 1:15Romans 2:17

Dec 7 2009

I Am

Posted by Anthony Crumley

When God told Moses to free Israel from Egypt, he wasn’t sure what to say to them or how to explain who sent him.

Then Moses said to God, “If I come to the people of Israel and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ what shall I say to them?”

God said to Moses, “I am who I am.” And he said, “Say this to the people of Israel, ‘I am has sent me to you.’”  (Ex. 3:13, 14)

This name has always seemed a little weird to me.  How could this strange name have possibly helped Moses lead the people of Israel to freedom?

As we think on this name it becomes more profound than we can imagine.  Yet, as is normal with God, it is simple enough for a child to understand.  In its simplest form God is saying to Israel, “I am whatever you need.”

You need not worry about whether you are capable of handling the situation because “I am.”  Don’t worry about whether you are able to defeat Pharaoh’s army because “I am.”  Don’t worry about whether you are able to feed millions of people in the middle of a desert because “I am.”  Don’t worry about whether you are able to possess the promised land because “I am.”

God, the “I am”, is the only truly independent and self-sufficient being that exists.  He is who He is and everyone else is dependent upon Him.  He is the only being that can say “I am who I am.”  Everyone else has to say “I am who God made me.”

To live a full life we must depend on “I am” at all times.  It is when we realize that we are not able that God will deliver us by saying “I am.”

Dec 6 2009

Are you God’s tool?

Posted by Anthony Crumley

Have you gotten to the place where you understand what God’s plan is for believers?  If so, have you figured out where your place is in all of this?

Sermon by Joe Clark on Sunday, December 6, 2009.