Peace, Love, & the Holy Spirit

Good evening! Last Sunday, Pastor Alan shared another wonderful teaching in the book of John. He continued his lessons on what occurred in the Upper Room, focusing this week on “Peace, Love, and the Holy Spirit.” To listen to this message from John 14, simply click play on the audio player below. I’ve also included Pastor Alan’s outline with links to the verses on Bible Gateway. Enjoy!

The Upper Room, part IV: Peace, Love, and the Holy Spirit

John 14:15-28

  1. Jesus’ words on love. (John 14:15, 21-24, 28)
  2. Jesus’ words on the Spirit. (John 14:16-20, 25-26)
    • Various translations of John 14:16
      • Advocate, Counselor, Helper, Paraclete
      • The idea is this: Jesus will send the Spirit as His ambassador (notice the word “another”). As that ambassador, He:
        • reveals truth
        • brings truth to remembrance
        • indwells
        • gives guidance and strength when we are helpless (as orphans)
        • is instrumental in our salvation (John 3:6-8; John 6:63)
        • sanctifies us/helps us become more like Christ (Galatians 5:22-26)
        • gives gifts to serve God & others (Romans 12:6-13)
    • Father’s Day note: It’s tough to lose a person you turned to the most for strength and guidance. The disciples had Jesus as their spiritual father for strength and guidance. He was going to leave them physically but would be with them always through the Holy Spirit.
  3. Jesus’ words on peace (John 14:27-28)
    • Peace is linked to Jesus
    • There are two kinds of peace (worldly peace & godly peace)
    • Peace can’t really be found without being right with God and living in faith to God (Matthew 5:2-10).
      • “Trust & Obey”
      • “Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus”
    • Romans 5:1-5 ties it all together.

Father’s Day note: What is the legacy we would most like to leave behind? Jesus leaves us peace. Are we peacemakers?

Conclusion: Are our lives marked by a sense of peace and obedient love and being guided by the Spirit?

The Upper Room, part III

Hello! We had a lovely service on Sunday, where Pastor Alan taught on John 14:1-14. To listen to this message, simply click play on the audio player below. Also included is Pastor Alan’s outline with links to Bible Gateway, so you can read the verses. Enjoy!

The Upper Room, part III

Christ with me,
Christ before me,
Christ behind me,
Christ in me,
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ on my right,
Christ on my left,
Christ when I lie down,
Christ when I sit down,
Christ when I arise,
Christ in the heart of every man who thinks of me,
Christ in the mouth of everyone who speaks of me,
Christ in every eye that sees me,
Christ in every ear that hears me.

  • A Clear Word to Confused Minds (John 14:5-14; 1 Corinthians 14:33)
    • The Clarity of Christ’s Uniqueness (John 14:6-7)
      • Christ is not just another way among many to be in connection to the Father in heaven.
      • To know Christ is to know truth, direction, and life.
      • “And tho’ this world, with devils filled, Should threaten to undo us, We will not fear, for God hath willed His truth to triumph thro’ us. The prince of darkness grim, We tremble not for him–His rage we can endure, For lo, his doom is sure: One little word shall fell him.
    • The Clarity of the Triune Godhead (John 14:9-11)
      • Christ’s connection to the Father and to the Spirit
    • The Clarity of Christ’s Work to be Seen in the Apostles’ Works and Teaching (John 14:12-13)
    • The Purpose of Praying & Living is to do so to God’s glory. (John 14:13)

Conclusion: We need to know God’s promises and grow in clarity about who He is. It’s not enough to believe in God just as a higher power or that all gods are equal. To believe as Jesus taught is to believe in the Trinity of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and the role each member plays in our lives.

Love, Betrayal, & Denial

Good afternoon! This past Sunday Pastor Alan taught from John 13:18-38, sharing a message about love, betrayal, and denial. To listen to this message, simply click play on the audio player below. I’ve also included Pastor’s notes with links to the verses he references in his message. Enjoy!

The Upper Room Part II

Love, Betrayal, and Denial

The Last Supper:  In Leonardo Da Vinci’s painting, the apostles are grouped in three.  One grouping is John, Simon Peter and Judas.  These three are referenced in John 13:18-38.  All are in conversation.  John records part of that, as does Luke in his gospel.  In Luke we find out that part of the conversation was an argument among friends.  Luke 22:15, 24-30. So that’s the setting.

Now let’s go back to the 3 principle characters in John.  John, Judas and Peter and the three main things we know about each of them.

  1. John is closet to Jesus.  The one Jesus loved is a self-description.  The theme of walking in love is major in his writings.  He in fact records Jesus’s words, “A new command I give you:  Love one another. As I have loved you love one another.  By this everyone will know you are my disciples, if you love one another.”  John was the only male disciple that was present with Jesus at the cross and Jesus entrusts the care of his mother to John when he says, “Behold your mother.”  So John is a reminder to us of the positive which is to love and remain close.
  2. The other one mentioned is Judas.  He reminds us of the potential there is to betray and how Satan can take over.  It says when he ate the morsel Satan entered in and he left out into the dark.  A contrast here is that the supper was, and is, all about signifying taking Jesus, the bread of life, into us and walking in the light.  Judas allowed himself to go the opposite direction.  We are capable as well.  The end for Judas was a sorrow that led to his taking of his own life.  He got to a point beyond repentance and forgiveness.  Interesting that his betrayal started with denial.  He says, surely not I, recorded in Matthew 26:25.  Both Peter and Judas deny Jesus but only one let himself forever be defined by betrayal.  Both wept but one’s sorrow would lead to repentance, the other’s to death. As it says in 2 Corinthians 7:10, “Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation  and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow leads to death.”  In 2nd Peter 3, it seems some were beginning to think the Lord wasn’t going to come back.  Peter clears that up and in essence says don’t think his delay, in human understanding of the time, means he isn’t coming again.  He is delaying to give you the opportunity to repent.  2 Peter 3:9-13.
  3. Simon Peter reminds us of the possibility of denial due to fear.  What was Peter’s first mistake?  Denial was the results of a 2-fold mistake. He didn’t realize his limitation and he didn’t ask for strength.  Even though Jesus still prays for him, even though he doesn’t ask.  Mark 14:27-31, 66-72.

So, 3 apostles

–      One calls us to love

–      One stands as a warning against betrayal and non repentance

–      One stands as a warning against denial but the promise that turning back to Jesus brings forgiveness and restoration. 

John 21:15-end

They call us to self-examination as we take the Lord’s Supper today. Matthew 26:26-29

The Upper Room & Foot Washing

Hello again! Here’s the next message from Pastor Alan. He taught last Sunday from the first seventeen verses of John chapter 13. To listen to this message, simply click play on the audio player below. I’ve also included Pastor’s outline and links to the Scriptures he references. Enjoy! 🙂

The Upper Room & Foot Washing

The Upper Room

The place where:

  •   Jesus washes the disciples’ feet
  •   The Last Supper is taken
  •   The followers hid after the crucifixion
  •   Jesus appeared after the resurrection
  •   Jesus gives the discourse and prayer recorded in John
  •   Jesus appears to Thomas
  •   The followers wait for the Holy Spirit
  1. Foremost, it is a place where there was closeness between Jesus and His disciples.
    • What is your “upper room” place?
      • The place where you listen to Jesus’ instructions and carry them out.
      • Luke 22:7-13
  2. We should have an eagerness to commune with Jesus.

Foot Washing (John 13:1-17)

  1. John emphasizes the contrast between outward religious acts of purification and inward cleansing and life that come from Christ.
  2. Foot washing not only symbolizes inward cleansing over outward cleaning, it is an act of a servant.
    • It is a reminder of the hierarchy of authority (v. 16)
    • It is a reminder that love without action is often just empty sentiment. (John 13:34-35)
    • Philippians 2:4-8
    • There can be nobility in the drudgery.

Purposes of the Cross & the Problem of Unbelief

Hello! I’m trying to catch up, so I’ll be posting two messages today (from May 22nd and 29th). The message below is Pastor Alan teaching on John 12:27-50. To listen to this message, simply click play on the audio player below. I’ve also included Pastor’s outline with links to the verses he references. 🙂

Purposes of the Cross & the Problem of Unbelief

Purposes of the Cross (John 12:27-36)

  1. The cross is the place where Jesus took God’s wrath against unrepentant sin upon Himself. (v. 27)
  2. The cross would ultimately bring God glory as death is turned into victory. (v. 28-29)
    • Jesus’ faithfulness is demonstrated in His total submission to the will of the Father.
    • Our faithfulness is only made possible by Christ’s faithfulness (Galatians 2:20 & Romans 3:22 KJV)
    • How do we glorify God? Live a life of faithfulness to God based on the faithfulness of God.
    • The Father’s will for us is to unleash Christ to act through us.
  3. The cross is the initial judgment and starts things moving toward Judgment Day.
    • Judgment on this world began at the cross and will end at His 2nd Coming.
    • The cross brings life to those who believe, but judgment and death to those who don’t believe and to the “ruler of this world.”
    • Prayer is entering into the conflict between God and the “ruler of this world” (Matthew 6:9-13)
  4. The cross is the point where all people are drawn. (v. 32-34)
    • Not that all would believe, but all would be drawn.
    • All = both Jews & Gentiles (all nations)
    • Drawn = the cross cannot be ignored (except at one’s peril)
    • The bronze serpent lifted up was a shadow of Christ (Numbers 21:4-8)
  5. The cross was, & still is, a call to walk in the light as things grow darker. (v. 35)
    • The only way we can navigate this dark world is by the Light of Jesus & the Lamp of the Word

The Problem of Unbelief (John 12:37-50)

  1. Unbelief is not the same as indecision/misunderstanding/nonbelief (v. 38)
    • It is not believing in the face of undeniable evidence.
    • It is rejection, often in the form of hatred.
  2. Unbelief is being blinded and hardened of heart. (v. 39-41)
    • Our natural state is a depravity of the heart; only God can renew it.
    • “Faith is not born in the ordinary human faculties but is a unique and rare gift of God.” -John Calvin
  3. Half-hearted belief is the result of fear over what people might think or what they might do to us. (vs. 42-43)
  4. Belief is acting on the revelation of Christ. Unbelief is rejecting the revelation of Christ, choosing darkness, and falling under condemnation. (v. 44-49)
    • It’s not a matter of if there will be a judgment, but where you end up after judgment.
    • The words that the Father commanded Jesus to speak lead to eternal life. (v. 50)