"Let us be reminded through this 3000 year old story, that even in the worst circumstances that we find ourselves in God is at work to restore His people. That the God we – you and I – are worshiping here today, right now at this very moment, is a God who has made promises to keep and sustain and lift up His people – even from death."
“And when completely emptied, destitute, and lost, He, God, the great kinsman redeemer, chose to save her. Brothers and sisters, just the same Jesus Christ is our kinsman redeemer. He alone has the right to take away the spoils and the ruins all of our loss and our pain and the alienation and brokenness of sin. And it is through Christ alone by His sacrifice that our stains were washed clean that he bore our curse upon that cross and His death made satisfaction for us, all so that we could be reconciled to God the Father – by no merit of our own – but because of the mercy of our Lord. And it is in this complete, and life-giving grace that we all do indeed get to live the greatest story ending of all time: life everlasting.”
“At the end of all things that great dragon who is our enemy, the one who deceives us, the one who accuses us and holds our sin and shame in our face, the one who is opposed to all that is good and true and beautiful in the world will be cast down by God’s heavenly army and destroyed once and for all.”
"We can see the total, transforming love of Christ that has now encapsulated, and is overflowing out of the 60-year-old, end of his ministry Paul. He isn’t bitter. He isn’t griping about being in prison, or his living conditions, and he’s not even using his apostolic authority in the letter – like he has for most of his ministry. The spirit that’s within Paul as a fellow Christian is just overflowing in his letter: in his grace, in his dealing with these hard issues, in his love for Philemon, in his love for the slave turned brother in Chris, Onesimus. It’s the transcending nature of the Christian life. Remember that Paul wrote in Galatians, 'There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, neither male nor female, for you are all one in Christ.'"
"As sinners, our inclination is not to want to worship and we can find all kinds of rationalizations for not doing it. ‘The weather’s really nice today’, ‘I really had a hard night last night’, ‘You know, the sermon’s probably going to be deadly dull – I saw that Michael Petty was preaching this Sunday’. We can rationalize and rationalize away. And so for us, worship is a discipline. It’s important for all of us to get to the place as Christians where we recognize that we need to worship God – even though we might not feel like it or we might not want to, we need to - because worship is part of God’s therapy for we who are prideful and self-absorbed. We need the therapy."
"The Gospel is more than just a set of beliefs or moral teachings about peace and love. It’s radical, it’s transformative, it’s powerful, and it’s the only way to salvation, and it’s the only way to God the Father. Even just saying that statement is enough to get you fired in a lot of places today, to lose an election, to be chastised publicly, or boycotted. But we should not be afraid to proclaim Christ crucified as we are commanded because the world desperately needs to hear it."
"He’s saying that God saves us, not out of some internal sense of duty or obligation to us, but that God saves us because He finds delight in saving and redeeming sinful people like you and me. That it makes our Father glad to see His work in our hearts. To see His mercy and forgiveness towards us in His Son Jesus creating faith and trust where there once was none. That God takes joy in fixing our hearts on the only treasure that has the power to bring us true and lasting peace: Himself. So, fear not little flock, for your Father delights to give you the kingdom. Your Father delights to give you peace. Your Father delights to save you."
"Being generous towards God means that our generosity reflects God’s generosity towards us. Our very lives are a gift from God. Creation is a gift from God. What do we have that we did not receive from God? Nothing. Jesus is saying here that success in life is measured by how well our generosity reflects the generosity of our Creator. And that’s a call for radical generosity that can only come from a radical trust in God."
"Loving Jesus, spending time with Jesus, being found in Jesus, thinking on Jesus will never disappoint. And because of Him, we have unhindered access to His Father and ours – to the mercy seat set between the cherubim at the top of the Old Covenant’s Ark – to the abundant mercy that is our God’s abiding characteristic."
"To my brothers in the room: see with what dignity and respect the Lord Jesus imparts to the women in His life. His example is, if you are anything like me, convicting yet inspiring. He is our model for how to treat women: with equity, respect, and graciousness. Brothers, how do our hearts measure up? To my sisters: sit at the feet of Jesus. It is not only where you are allowed but where you belong – as a beloved daughter of Almighty God. Live into this world-changing reality with grateful hearts: that the Lord sees you as precious and equal in His sight."