”(God) in times past suffered all nations to walk in their own ways. Nevertheless he left not himself without witness, in that he did good and gave us rain from heaven, and fruitful seasons, filling our hearts with food and gladness.” –Acts 14:17
”And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad… Therefore they that were scattered abroad went everywhere preaching the word.” –Acts 8:1, 4
”This is that Moses… To whom our fathers would not obey, but thrust him from them, and in their hearts turned back again into Egypt.” –Acts 7:39
Did you know that the Bible is the greatest book on leadership ever written? Jesus was the greatest leader of all time, of course, but there are also many other examples of great leadership in Scripture. Joseph was an excellent leader among his brethren but he had to learn some lessons early on. Nehemiah was one of the greatest leaders of history. Moses had to lead the most difficult crowd ever through a trying forty-year adventure through a barren wilderness. The apostles all had to learn some tough lessons but they came through in the end. Paul established great churches through great leadership all across the Mediterranean world.
God’s Message to Mary: Prepare to Be God’s Instrument
Sermon Series: God’s Christmas Messages to You
Based on Luke 1:26-38, 46-56
”For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.” –Acts 4:20
One of the greatest excuses in life is “I can’t help it.” I’m guilty of saying it often. We overeat, we overreact, we overdo it and we say, “well, I just can’t help it, that’s just how I am.” Even worse, we’ll say, “I just can’t help it, that’s just how God made me.” Here’s a new challenge: Let’s use the phrase “I can’t help it” in a good way.
“These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful.” -Revelation 17:14
“But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear.” -1 Peter 3:15
When no one likes you, it’s easy to become bitter. When you’re untouchable, it’s easy to give up on life. Jesus always seemed to search out the unliked and the untouchable. When He found them, He would do more than like them, He would love them. And He would touch them! Mark commits only four verses of material to the conversation Jesus held with this particular leper (Mark 8:1-4), but the story is overwhelmingly moving. Can you just imagine it, an untouchable leper with running sores being approached by the Creator of the universe?
“So being affectionately desirous of you, we were willing to have imparted unto you, not the gospel of God only, but also our own souls, because ye were dear unto us.”—1 Thess. 2:8