A Good Family


Genesis 2:18-25

A good family must be God-oriented.

God formed the first family. Marriage and family are first instituted by God.

We must learn from God how a family is put together. The instructions on marriage and family are to be found in the Bible. Here we have the principles, precepts and promises to follow to have a good family.

God is our first and final authority upon which our home is built.

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A good family must be goal-oriented.

God brought Adam and Eve together in marriage. The goal is oneness, togetherness or unity.

When we are married, we are to leave our parents. But we still maintain our contact with them.

When we get married, our main goal now is unity in our new family. We must learn to cut our dependence upon our parents. We must learn to develop independency in our marriage.

A good family must take time and effort to develop compatibility. We must learn to have goals, needs, emotions, and drives which are compatible with one another.

A good family must learn to develop 100% commitment. We must learn to love one another, talk with one another and live with one another.

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A good family must be grace-oriented.

We must understand that we are all sinners and we married a sinner.

We must understand that we are saved by God's grace alone.

A family where grace is understood makes all the difference.

If we understand grace, then we will understand forgiveness.

When we have genuine repentance and remorse over sin, then there will be genuine forgiveness and restoration in the family.

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Some thoughts:
  • A good family must be God-oriented. That gives a family authority.
  • A good family must be goal-oriented. That gives a family unity.
  • A good family must be grace-oriented. That gives a family beauty.


Marriage Relationship


Genesis 2:15-25

God made a man in His image.

He named him Adam.

God placed Adam in a beautiful Garden of Eden to tend and keep it.

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God considered Adam in the garden and He said, “It is not good that man should be alone”.

God had created every other being with its counterpart.

But Adam was created alone.

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God caused all the animals to pass before Adam.

Adam named them all.

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But Adam realized that none of the animals was compatible with him.

God used this event to awaken the realization of loneliness in Adam’s heart.

God used this event to create a desire within Adam for companionship.

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Up to this point, Adam was satisfied with his life and his surroundings.

He thought he had everything he wanted.

Now Adam was made to realize that he did not have everything.

Now Adam desired to have a companion to complete him.

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God took definite steps to satisfy Adam’s desire.

God caused Adam to go to sleep.

God opened him up and took out a rib.

God made a woman from this rib.

She was called Eve.

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Eve was taken out of Adam’s side to be equal with him.

Eve was taken from under Adam’s arm to be protected by him.

Eve was taken from near Adam’s heart to be loved by him.

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Adam woke from his sleep.

Adam saw a new, absolutely beautiful and perfect woman there with him.

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Adam’s immediate response was “Yes!”

Finally, here was the woman whom Adam couldn’t live without.

Finally, here was the woman who was compatible with him and completed Him.

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Adam had the heartfelt love for the woman.

Adam had the sure knowledge that this was the woman God has created just for him.

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God formed the first family, and He blessed their union.

God commanded them to “Be fruitful and increase in number; fill the earth and subdue it” (Gen. 1:28).

Adam and Eve then came together in physical union (Gen. 4:1).

Children were born into the family.

The family expanded and blessed by the hand of God.

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Marriage relationship is next in importance to our relationship with God.

All other activities outside of marriage must take a backseat.

This includes our businesses, hobbies, friends, careers, sports, and even church work.

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Living with our spouse is a lifelong pursuit.

It begins at marriage and continues to the deathbed.

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Marriage speaks of total and absolute commitment.

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Broken marriage is a serious matter.

It must be saved!

The Lord Jesus Christ said, “Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” (Mark 10:9).

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Marriage relationship must be supported, prayed for, maintained and honored.

The extended family, the church family, close friends etc. must learn to help their loved ones to fix their marriage problems.

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Are you ready for marriage relationship?


Man's Life


Genesis 1:26-28

Man is a special creation of God.

Man is the product of God’s creative power.

He is not the result of random evolution.

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Man did not evolve from a single-celled organism over the space of millions of years.

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Animals were spoken into existence by the Word of God.

Man was formed by God out of the dust of the earth.

And God breathed life into the nostrils of man.

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There is a vast difference between humans and animals.

We don’t simply put a man “out of his misery” when his quality life is over.

We don’t put babies and brain-damaged people to death.

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Man is a spiritual being.

Man was made in the image of God.

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Man has body, soul and spirit.

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Man has body to help him move and interact with the world.

Man has soul to help him to reason, feel, act, etc.

Man has spirit to allow him to be God-conscious.

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But Man sinned.

Man’s descendents are born dead spiritually.

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It is after the Spirit of God brings to life the spirit of man that man is able to reach out in faith toward God.

Then the man is transformed.

He is now able to live to please God.

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God determines the dawn of every life.

Childbirth isn’t just the product of a physical union between a man and a woman.

It is the sovereign God who determines whether or not to begin a life.

It is God who decides when to open a womb and close a womb.

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God determines the design of every life.

God determines what a life will become.

He has a plan for every man.

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God decides the end of every life.

God determines the day, the hour, the minute, and the very second when we will breathe our last.

God determines when, where, and how we will die.

It was the Lord’s will that Moses would die alone on a mountain (Deut. 34:5-8).

It was God’s will that Jacob would die surrounded by his children (Gen. 49:33).

It was God’s will that Paul would die at the hands of Roman executioners.

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The life of every man is very precious.

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God sent His Son into this world to save sinful men through His death on the cross (John 3:16).

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We need to take good care of our lives.

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We also need to call upon God to stop all the helpless and voiceless people who face death in the name of convenience, money and godless indifference.

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We must love lives.

And we must save lives.

One Thing Missing


Mark 10:17-22

The man was rich.

He possessed money.

There is nothing wrong having money.

The problem comes when money has you.

And money, with all its power and potential, cannot give salvation for the soul.

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The Lord Jesus named several commandments to him.

He responded that he had kept them from his youth.

He was a moral man.

However, morality couldn't get him into Heaven!

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The man possessed a sense of urgency.

He ran to the Lord Jesus looking for the answer he needed.

He realized that life didn't last forever!

But urgency couldn't save him from eternal damnation!

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The man possessed humility.

He bowed before the Lord and asked of Him.

But just being meek and humble would not keep him out of Hell.

It was just not enough.

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The man possessed a desire for salvation.

He cared about where he would spend eternity.

He believed in Heaven and Hell.

But a desire for salvation was just not good enough.

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But the man was loved by God.

Even though he was a sinner, he was still loved by the Lord.

The love of God for fallen men was so great that He gave up His Son to die on the cross to save them from their sins.

But it was not enough to bring about his salvation.

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The man had problems.

He was a sinner in need of salvation.

The Lord Jesus told him how he could be saved.

He was to renounce his wealth.

He must turn from money that was holding his life.

He was to take up his cross.

He was to leave everything, and identify himself with the shame of the cross.

He was to follow the Lord Jesus.

He was called to place his total trust in the Lord Jesus Christ for his salvation.

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The Lord Jesus had revealed His identity to him.

He had declared Himself to be God!

He was saying that if He is good, then He is God!

His challenge to him was to believe in Him alone, and in what He can do for the sinners.

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But the man thought the price was just too high for him to pay.

And he chose his riches over his own soul.

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The man went away sad.

His prospects for eternity became very bleak and promised only Hell.

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The man had everything.

But there was one thing missing.

He didn't have the Lord Jesus.

And he was not ready to receive Him as his Savior.

One thing he lacked....

Divorce


Mark 10:1-12

The Pharisees came to test the Lord Jesus Christ.

They wanted to trap Him in a theological debate.

They wanted to undermine His credibility in the eyes of the people.

A great crowd had gathered to hear Him teach.

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The Pharisees asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife?”

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The Lord Jesus Christ turned the tables on them.

He asks them “What did Moses command you?”

It is a good tactic to use the Bible when we are drawn into a theological argument.

They answered, “Moses permitted a man to write a certificate of divorce and send her away.”

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The Lord Jesus Christ responded by reminding them that the only reason Moses gave such a command was for “hardness of heart”.

In other words, divorce is the result of sin and hardness of heart.

The law Moses gave them was to control their refusal to honor God’s ideal for marriage.

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Such a situation should never have existed in the first place.

But because of the sinfulness of the human heart it did, and it needed to be controlled.

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The Lord Jesus Christ reached beyond the Law all the way to the beginning of creation.

He reminded them that in the creation, God created a male and a female.

God’s command to the first couple was for them to be fruitful and multiply, and replenish the earth.

Under God’s divine design, a man was to leave the home of his parents and he was to cleave to his wife.

It was to endure for a lifetime.

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Marriage is a covenant that is to be entered into only after serious thought about the consequences.

Marriage is a lifetime commitment between one man and one woman for one lifetime.

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When a man and a woman come together as husband and wife, they become one flesh.

They become one person in God’s eyes.

The married couple becomes one in their goals, their direction, their will, their emotions, their mind and their spirit.

They move together through life as a single entity.

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The Lord Jesus Christ then told them that every marriage is made in heaven.

The union of two people in the covenant of marriage is an honorable thing in the eyes of God.

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Marriage is the work of the Lord while divorce is the work of man.

No one has the right to destroy a marriage.

Divorce and remarriage are never commanded or commended in the Word of God.

Both were merely permitted as a gracious concession to the sinfulness of man.

God’s ideal for marriage is one man and one woman for one lifetime.

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When the Lord Jesus Christ was alone with His disciples, they asked Him again.

They wanted to learn more.

The Lord Jesus Christ said when a man or a woman divorced their mate and married another person, they were guilty of adultery in the eyes of the Lord.


A Glimpse Of His Glory


Mark 9:1-13

Most scholars believe it is Mount Hermon.

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The Lord Jesus Christ selected Peter, James and John for this trip to the top of Mount Hermon.

Perhaps they were allowed to witness His transfiguration in preparation for the places of leadership they would later occupy.

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Suddenly the Lord Jesus Christ changed!

His face changed.

His garments changed.

He was transfigured.

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The dark mountain was instantly bathed a light brighter than the sun.

It was a special presentation!

These men were given a glimpse of the glory of God.

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Then Moses and Elijah appeared.

They came to talk with the Lord Jesus Christ about His impending death upon the cross (Luke 9:31).

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Moses and Elijah were the preeminent representatives of the Law and the Prophets.

They came to encourage the Lamb of God as He drew closer to Calvary.

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Peter was so frightened.

He didn’t know what to say.

So he just blurted out something.

He recommended putting up 3 shelters, one for Moses, one for Elijah, and one for Jesus.

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Then a cloud appeared and covered them.

Out of the cloud boomed the very voice of God Almighty: “This is my Son, whom I love. Listen to him!”

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God spoke and immediately the cloud was gone.

Moses and Elijah were gone.

The disciples were alone with the Lord Jesus Christ once again.

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As the Lord Jesus Christ and His 3 disciples left the mountain, he told them not to tell what they had seen until He rose again from the dead.

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The 3 men were confused.

They wanted to know why the scribes said that Elijah must come before the Messiah, when they saw Elijah appeared on the mountain after they had seen the Messiah.

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The Lord Jesus Christ told them that Elijah would come.

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Then He turned the tables on them.

He turned the focus from Elijah to Himself.

He told the disciples that while Elijah would come, the Son of Man would suffer much and be rejected.

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Then the Lord Jesus Christ let them know that Elijah had already come, not literally, but in the person of John the Baptist, who came in the spirit and power of Elijah.

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When this great man of God came, he was put to death.

The implication here is that the Son of God came to this earth and He too would be treated shamefully.

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Thank God for the transfiguration of the Lord Jesus Christ.

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Nowhere in the Gospel record can His glory and identity be seen any clearer.

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The Lord Jesus Christ was completely man, yet He was so divine that He could let His real glory shine like the sun.

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He is the fulfillment of everything Moses and Elijah, and all the Law and prophets, said or wrote.

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He brings that fulfillment to us!

He brings the presence of God to our lives.

He illuminates our lives.

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One day, through our relationship with Him, we will rest for all eternity in the glory of our risen, sovereign Lord.

Do You Still Not Understand?


Mark 8:14-21

The Lord Jesus Christ and His disciples were on a boat sailing across the Sea of Galilee.

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The disciples still had their minds on the bread.

They realized that they had forgotten to bring along bread for themselves.

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The Lord Jesus Christ used their forgetfulness as an opportunity to teach them some lessons.

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The Lord’s Command (15)

The Lord Jesus Christ warned them to beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and that of Herod.

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In the Bible, yeast is a picture of sin, evil and wickedness.

It is used as a picture of corruption.

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We are to lay aside evil and spiritual corruption, and live for the Lord Jesus Christ.

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We are warned that a little yeast leavens the whole batch of dough.

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Sin is like yeast in our lives.

When we tolerate sin, it will soon infiltrate every part of our lives.

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The Lord Jesus Christ warned His disciples to beware of hypocrisy, worldliness and compromise.

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The Disciples’ Confusion (16)

The disciples misunderstood what the Lord Jesus Christ was trying to say.

Their minds were so focused on the material and physical world that they couldn’t see the spiritual side of thing.

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The Lord Jesus Christ wasn’t talking about real bread at all.

He was using the yeast found in bread as a metaphor, as a symbol of evil.

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The Lord’s Challenge (17-21)

The Lord Jesus Christ sensed their thoughts.

He asked them a series of questions to awaken faith in their hearts.

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Didn’t they see Him feed 5,000?

Didn’t they see Him feed 4,000?

Didn’t they hear His words and the responses of the people?

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Then He asked them specifically about how many baskets of fragments were left over in the 2 feeding miracles.

They answered that there were 12 in the first and 7 in the second.

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Our Lord’s point in this was to get them to see that it was God they were dealing with!

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A lack of bread was not the real problem.

Their real problem was a serious lack of faith!

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The heart of the issue was not the yeast of the Pharisees and the Herodians.

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The real issue was the lack of faith among the disciples.

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We read God’s Word, but many of us do not believe it.

We experience God’s power, but many of us are not convinced that we can trust Him completely.

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The Lord Jesus Christ challenges us to examine our lives in the light of His work in us.

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He is calling us to have radical and total faith in Him.

He is calling us to remember what He has done in our lives.

He is calling us to faith.

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He is challenging us to come to Him for salvation.

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He is calling us to purge the yeast of hypocrisy and worldliness from our lives.

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He is calling us.

We need to come to Him now!


Eating With Unwashed Hands


Mark 7:1-23

The Problem Confronted (1-5)

The Pharisees and the scribes saw the disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ eating with unwashed hands.

They confronted the Lord Jesus Christ.

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This washing had nothing to do with cleaning the hands.

It was a ceremonial cleansing.

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It involved someone pouring water out of a jar onto another’s hands, whose fingers must be pointing up.

As long as the water dripped off at the wrist, the person could then proceed to the next step.

He then had the water poured over both hands with the fingers pointing down.

Then each hand was to be rubbed with the fist of the other hand.

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The problem with this ritual cleaning was that it was not from God.

It was the tradition of the elders.

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The Problem Condemned (6-13)

The Lord Jesus Christ condemned their legalism.

He called them hypocrites.

He accused them of elevating their traditions far above the Word of God.

He told them that they had laid aside the commandments of God in favor of their man made rules and traditions.

He told them that they had actually rejected the commandments of God so that they could keep their traditions!

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The Lord Jesus also exposed the liberties they took with the Law.

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He talked about the practice of “Corban”.

That word means “a gift to God”.

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God said in the 5th commandment, “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long upon the land which the LORD your God is giving you."

"And he who curses his father or his mother shall surely be put to death.”

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Part of the idea of honoring our parents included the necessity of providing for their needs as long as they lived.

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But the Jews found a way around it.

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They said that their money or possessions was “Corban”.

They could only use them in sacred matters.

Thus they didn’t have to provide for their parents.

They would just tell them that their stuff was dedicated to the Lord and they wouldn’t be getting anything.

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The Lord Jesus Christ told them that they had made the Laws of God ineffective by their traditions.

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The Problem Clarified (14-23)

The Lord Jesus Christ told the crowds that it is not what comes into the body, like eating with unwashed hands, that causes spiritual defilement.

It is those things that arise from within the heart of a person that defile him or her.

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The disciples were confused.

They asked the Lord Jesus Christ about the matter.

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The Lord Jesus Christ reminded them that what went into the body passed through the body.

It did not affect the heart, or the inner man.

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External things cannot cause spiritual defilement!

Spiritual defilement is always the result of a defiled heart.

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Every sin we commit has its origin in our heart.

We do the things we do because of defilement within.

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Keeping external rules will not change the heart.

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The heart can only be changed, and spiritual defilement cleansed away, by the new birth.

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The Lord Jesus Christ is able to take a defiled sinner and wash them in His blood.

He is able to make them a new creature.

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The Lord Jesus Christ then gave them some attitudes and actions that could cause spiritual defilement.

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The problem with mankind is a problem of the heart.

It is a place where sin originates.

That is the part of man that needs to be changed!

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Are we hypocrites?

Are we legalists?

Do we have defiled heart?

Have we truly been born again?

Has the Lord Jesus Christ saved our soul and changed our lives?

Or, have we just been pretending to be believers?

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Let us look into our heart now.

What do we find there?

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What dwells in our hearts is what we really are!

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Let’s obey the voice of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Let us come to Him now.

Only Him can change our heart!

The Death Of A Conscience


Mark 6:14-29

Herod’s Confusion (17-20)

Herod Antipas heard about the ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ and His miracles.

He thought that the Lord Jesus Christ was John the Baptist raised from the dead.

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Herod Held John

Herod had John the Baptist arrested for preaching against his sins.

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Herod had fallen in love with his sister-in-law, Herodias.

They had an affair.

They both left their spouse and married one another.

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John the Baptist repeatedly condemned their action.

Herod was upset.

So was Herodias.

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Herod had John thrown into prison.

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Herod Helped John

Herod disliked John the Baptist’s message.

But he protected him from the murderous ambitions of Herodias.

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Herod Heard John

Herod didn’t like John the Baptist exposed his sin.

But he had a reverential fear of him.

He knew that John the Baptist was a holy and righteous man of God.

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When He heard John the Baptist preached, it caused him great conflict of soul.

But He heard him gladly.

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Herod’s Crime (21-29)

It Involved A Sinful Dance

Herodias had been waiting for an opportunity to put John the Baptist to death.

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She saw her chance at Herod’s birthday.

When Herod and his men were drunk with wine, Herodias sprung her trap.

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She sent in her teenage daughter Salome to dance for them.

It was a suggestive, sensual, sexual dance designed to inflame their passions.

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Her dance had the desired effect, for Herod and those with him were captivated by her.

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It Involved a Senseless Declaration

Herod promised to give her anything she desired, up to half his kingdom!

It was a foolish boast designed to make him look good in front of his guests.

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The girl ran to her mother to seek her advice.

Her mother, without hesitation, told her to request the head of John the Baptist.

The girl ran back and told Herod she wanted John’s head.

She added her own twist to the request by telling him that she wanted it now and she wanted it served up on a plate.

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It Involved A Shameful Deed

Herod realized immediately that he had made a mistake.

But he was afraid of losing face in front of his guests.

So he sent the executioner and John the Baptist was immediately beheaded.

It was then presented to Salome.

His disciples then came and took his body away for burial.

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Herod’s Conscience (14-16)

His Contrition

As soon as Herod heard about the miracles, the message and the ministry of the Lord Jesus, He immediately assumed that the Lord Jesus Christ was John the Baptist resurrected from the dead.

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His Confession

Herod was convinced that the Lord Jesus Christ was none other than John the Baptist whom he beheaded.

Herod was confessing his guilt.

But there was no repentance!

Herod was not saved!

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The death of a conscience is a tragic event.

It usually leads to the death of a soul.

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When we refuse the Lord Jesus Christ and the Gospel, there remains no hope for our salvation.

There is nothing in our future but the terrible effects of sin and the horrors of Hell.

Never be like Herod!


The Amazing Power Of Simple Faith


Mark 5:21-34

The Woman’s Disease (24-26)

Her Ailment

The woman suffered from an issue of blood.

She was bleeding from her body.

It was a continual flow of blood.

Her Agonies

The constant flow of blood caused her much suffering.

She Suffered Physically

She was weak and pale.

The least of efforts would wear her out.

She Suffered Medically

She had tried all the remedies of all the physicians.

And she suffered under their care.

She Had Suffered Socially

She could not work around others because of the danger of defilement.

She Had Suffered Emotionally

She had lived her life moving from one rejection to another.

She was always lonely, isolated and desperate!

She Had Suffered Religiously

She could not go to the Women’s Court of the Temple.

She was unclean.

She Had Suffered Financially

She had spent all she had.

She has been left penniless and destitute.

Her Anguish

She was living under a death sentence.

She would not get better.

She would only die from this disease.

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The Woman’s Desire (27-28)

The Witness She Heard

This poor woman heard about the Lord Jesus Christ.

She had heard that there was power in His touch.

The Will She Held

She knew that the Lord Jesus Christ was her only hope!

She was desperate to approach Him!

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The Woman’s Deliverance (29-34)

Her Deliverance Was Powerful

She reached out her trembling hand.

She touched His garment.

Instantly she was healed!

Her Deliverance Was Personal

The Lord Jesus Christ felt her touch.

It was a touch accompanied by faith.

He sought her out to bring her to salvation.

Her Deliverance Was Profound

The woman was brought into a soul saving relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ.

She was in the family of God!

Her Deliverance Was Permanent

The woman had done the right thing in coming to the Lord Jesus Christ and touching Him.

She was healed.

Her battle with this dread disease was finished!

She had received a brand new life from the hand of the Lord.

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This woman experienced healing that day.

It was not because she touched His garment.

It was because she exercised faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and His power.

When her faith touched His power, His power changed her life.

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In that crowd that day, there were many people with physical, spiritual, and emotional needs.

But only she got help.

Many touched the Lord Jesus, but only she was transformed.

Only she looked at the Lord Jesus Christ through the eyes of faith.

She believed He could help her.

She did whatever she had to do to touch Him.

When she touched Him, she was made whole!

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If we need help, we must come to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Only He has the power to change our situation.

If we need help, we must get to Him and touch Him by faith.

Taming The Tombstone Terrorist


Mark 5:1-20

Consider The Man (1-5)

The Man’s Defilement

The man was held fast in the grip of the devil.

He was possessed by thousands of demons.

He was in a state of hopelessness and helplessness.

The Man’s Depravity

The man lived among the dead.

He lived in the cemetery.

He lived with bones and the decaying corpses of the dead.

The Man’s Desperation

The man was naked.

He was running around like a wild man day and night.

He cut himself and his body was covered with blood and scars.

He screamed and yelled in his torment.

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Consider The Master (6-13)

The Master’s Compassion

The Lord Jesus Christ had compassion on the man.

He wanted to deliver him from the grip of Satan.

The Master’s Confrontation

The demons drove this man to the feet of the Lord Jesus Christ.

They fell down in acknowledgement of His deity.

The Lord Jesus Christ ordered them to release their captive.

The demons acknowledged His authority, and they begged the Lord Jesus Christ not to torment them by sending them to Hell.

They requested that they might be allowed to enter into a herd of swine that was feeding nearby.

The Lord Jesus Christ gave them permission.

When they did, the swine couldn’t tolerate the demons and killed themselves by running into the sea.

The Master’s Command

Everything the man had tried to retain his sanity failed.

But one word from the Lord Jesus Christ and He was free!

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Consider The Miracle (14-20)

He Was Changed By The Lord Jesus Christ

When the townsfolk came, they could see the evidence of a changed life.

No longer was he running around, crying out and cutting himself.

He was calm and seated beside the Lord Jesus Christ.

No longer was he naked.

He was clothed!

He was in his right mind!

He has been changed spiritually, physically and mentally!

He Was Committed To The Lord Jesus Christ

The man wanted to be with the Lord Jesus Christ.

He Was Commissioned By The Lord Jesus Christ

The Lord Jesus Christ wanted him to remain in his hometown to tell others what He had done for him.

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The Lord Jesus Christ tamed the tombstone terrorist.

He can tame us too!

Are we lost and in the grip of sin? He can set us free!

Are we out of God’s will and trapped in pride and bitterness? He can set us free!

Do we need His touch? Do we need His compassion? Do we need His life-changing power? Let us come to Him today.

The Lord Jesus Christ had weathered the storm on the sea to get to the man.

He had weathered the storm of Calvary to get to us.

Is He calling?

Let us come to Him now.

Principles Of Kingdom Growth


Mark 4:26-29

It Involves A Ministry (26-27a)

A Human Ministry

God has chosen to grow His kingdom through human ministers.

Each of us was saved because some believer somewhere sowed Gospel seed.

That seed fell into the good soil of our hearts.

Then it germinated and produced new life within our hearts.

Now, we are to carry the Gospel seed wherever we go and sow it as we go.

A Humbling Ministry

After the farmer has sown the seed, he has done all that he can.

He cannot bring life out of the ground.

So he places it into the ground and waits to see what will become of the seed.

That is humbling work!

The farmer is at the mercy of the seed, the soil and the elements.

So it is with the Gospel of grace!

We can only sow the seed and then we leave the results in the hands of sovereignty!

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It Involves A Mystery (27b-28a)

A Puzzling Mystery

No one can explain how a dead, dormant seed can produce life when it is buried in the soil.

So it is with the Gospel!

When it is sown into a prepared heart, that seed begins to germinate.

When it does, life will issue forth.

This is the process we call conviction.

A Private Mystery

The work at first is very private.

The farmer must patiently wait for the results of his labor to be seen.

He does not know which seed will grow.

So it is with those who sow Gospel seed.

We do not know which seed will grow and bear fruit.

But such things are not our worry!

God has called us to sow the seed!

The harvest is His responsibility!

A Precious Mystery

The farmer knows that the seed is growing and changing.

He knows that the plant and the fruit will come!

When we sow the Gospel, we know that God is working even when we cannot see the proof of that work!

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It Involves A Majesty (28b-29)

A Progressive Majesty

There is a progression in the growth of the plant.

It starts off small and fragile.

But in time it matures and produces fruit.

This is a picture of how a Christian is to grow in grace.

The new life is tender and easily damaged.

But it will grow strong in the Lord and will bear much fruit for His glory!

A Profitable Majesty

When the time for harvest is come, the farmer receives the return on his investment.

When a person is saved and lives his life to the fullest for God’s glory, it honors the Lord and accomplishes what He intended all along!

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As Christians, we must sow the Gospel seed as we pass through this world.

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As Christians, we must grow in the Lord in a way that pleases Him!

The Servant Under Attack


Mark 3:20-30

His Friends Attacked His Sanity (20-21)

They said He was insane.

Their Reason

The Lord Jesus Christ and His men returned to the town.

They entered a house, hoping to get some rest.

Their plan was shattered by a multitude of people who came to them for help.

They were so busy ministering to them that they didn’t have time for meal.

When His friends heard about it, their first thought was that He had gone crazy.

Their Remedy

They came to grab and take Him back to Nazareth.

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His Foes Attacked His Spirituality (22-30)

The scribes said He was demon possessed.

The Attack

They said He had Beelzebub, and by the ruler of the demons He cast out demons.

They attributed His miracles to the power of the devil.

Beelzebub was a loathsome, wicked demon associated with all things dirty and filthy.

It was a cruel and heartless attack.

The Answer

The Lord Jesus Christ called His attackers to Him and He totally destroyed their arguments.

His used 3 illustrations from life to prove that Satan couldn’t be in the business of casting out Satan.

(1) A Secular Illustration

A kingdom in division is a kingdom that cannot stand.

When there is civil war and strife within a kingdom, the stability of that kingdom is compromised and that kingdom is more likely to fall.

For a kingdom to be strong it must be united.

For Satan to cast out his own demons would be counterproductive.

(2) A Social Illustration

A house in division is a house that cannot stand.

A marriage that faces a constant barrage of fighting is a marriage that cannot stand.

A home is not a home unless it is filled with love, unity and peace.

(3) A Spiritual Illustration

We cannot rob a well defended home unless we first tie up the defender of that home.

The Lord Jesus Christ has the power to invade Satan’s kingdom.

He can deliver us from the devil’s grip.

He has power over the devil!

The Alarm

The scribes did not see the terrible spiritual danger they were in.

They had called God’s Messiah the servant of the devil.

The Lord Jesus Christ warned them of the danger of committing an unpardonable sin.

The Sin That Can Be Forgiven

All manner of sins and blasphemies can be forgiven!

The Sin That Can Never Be Forgiven

The Lord Jesus Christ worked as a Spirit filled man.

When the scribes attributed the work of the Spirit to the devil, they were guilty of blasphemy against the Spirit of God.

They were in danger of committing an unpardonable sin!

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Today, the unforgivable sin is to say “no” to the call of the Holy Spirit for the last time.

When He calls and we say no for the last time, He will abandon us to our choice and allow us to go to Hell!

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Are we under attack for our faith?

Are we being misunderstood and misrepresented?

If we are being attacked for our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, we are in good company.

We ought to come today and thank Him that we are being counted worthy to suffer with Him.

We should also pray that He will help us to be steadfast for His glory.

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If we are lost and He has been calling us to come to Him for salvation, we must say “Yes” to His call.

Come while He is calling.

Come while we can be saved.

The Scandal Over Sinners


Mark 2:13-17

The Lord Jesus Christ was walking by the Sea of Galilee when the people of Capernaum flocked around Him.

The common men were excited.

But the Jewish leaders were offended.

They were looking for His fault.

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Jesus And The Publican (14)

Levi The Man

The Lord Jesus Christ passed a man named Levi who was working at the booth collecting taxes.

Levi was a tax collector for Rome.

He was among the most despised people in Israel.

He was viewed as a traitor to his people and to his nation.

He was isolated in the community and not allowed to go to the Temple or the synagogues.

He could only socialize with other tax collectors and sinners.

Levi And The Master

As Jesus passed by, He issued a simple command to Levi, “Follow Me!”

It was a call for Levi to leave his old life behind and to begin a new life of following Jesus.

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Jesus And The Party (15)

The Lord Jesus Christ was invited to Levi’s house for dinner.

Some of those present were other tax collectors, prostitutes and others who did not observe the strict religious rules of the scribes and Pharisees.

The Purpose For The Party

Levi hosted this party as an opportunity to say farewell to his old life and as an opportunity to introduce his friends and associates to Jesus.

His life had changed and he wanted everyone else to know it.

He wanted his friends to meet the Lord Jesus Christ.

He wanted them to experience the same change of life that he himself had experienced.

The Picture In The Party

The Lord Jesus Christ came.

He goes where the sinners are.

He does not partake of their wicked ways.

But He spends time with them in an effort to win them.

He wants to win their confidence and to change their lives.

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Jesus And The Problem (16)

The Critics

The religious leaders used this party as an opportunity to attack the Lord Jesus Christ.

The Criticism

The scribes and Pharisees attacked the Lord Jesus Christ for spending time with sinners.

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Jesus And The Pronouncement (17)

When the Lord Jesus Christ heard their criticism, He did not allow it to go unchallenged.

Jesus And His Mission

He told His critics that He is like a doctor.

He is treating the sick and trying to help them get well.

Jesus And His Message

When the Lord Jesus Christ answered their criticism, He also leveled a criticism against them.

He told them that His mission, His ministry and His message are not for good people, but for those who are bad.

He told them that He did not come for those who are well, but for those who are sick.

The plan of salvation is only for all who can see and admit their need of a Savior.

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The Lord Jesus Christ wants His Gospel taken out of the church into the places where the lost live.

We are to reach out to sinners.

It is time we repent of our own hypocrisy and asked the Lord to give us a heart like His.

The Lord Jesus Christ is the Friend of sinners.

We are to follow His example and seek them.

The Passion Of The Amazing Servant


Mark 1:35-39

The 1st year of the earthly ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ was spent in relative obscurity.

He preached the Gospel in the southern parts of Israel and reached out to lost souls.

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The 1st year of Christ’s ministry has been called The Year Of Obscurity.

The 2nd year is called The Year Of Popularity.

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Mark passed over the 1st year of Jesus’ ministry.

He began at that time when Jesus was beginning to gain a following in Israel.

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We had seen the Lord call His first disciples.

We have watched Him at work preaching in the synagogue, casting out devils, and healing many that were sick.

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Now we look at the great passions that moved the heart of the Savior.

We take a brief glimpse into one early morning quiet time of the Lord Jesus Christ.

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Jesus Possesses A Passion For Prayer (35)

Nothing could prevent the Lord Jesus Christ from an early morning meeting with His Father.

He rose up a long while before daylight and went to a secluded location to pray.

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The Lord Jesus Christ prayed because He lived His life in total dependence on the Father.

He prayed because He wanted a totally unhindered fellowship with the Father.

He wanted the Holy Spirit to be able to flow through His life in absolute freedom and power.

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The Lord Jesus Christ wanted His prayer time to be uninterrupted and unhindered.

He knew that His prayer time was precious and private.

He wanted nothing to come between Him and time spent in His Father’s presence.

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Jesus Possesses A Passion For Preaching (36-38)

As the Lord Jesus Christ was praying, He was interrupted by Peter, Andrew, James and John.

They came to tell Him that the people of Capernaum were looking for Him.

They wanted Him to go back to town and did some more miracles so that the people would cling to Him even more.

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The Lord Jesus Christ refused to allow them to dictate the direction of His ministry.

He had been in communion with His Father.

He knew what the Father wanted Him to do.

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The Lord Jesus Christ reminded the disciples that the message is more important than the miracles.

He told them that He was going to the towns where He had not yet preached so that He could share the Gospel with them too.

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Jesus Possesses A Passion For People (39)

The Lord Jesus Christ and His disciples left Capernaum to go into the other towns of Galilee to share the Gospel message with them.

He was consumed with a passion to see people saved from their sins and brought into a relationship with the Father.

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The Lord Jesus Christ came to this world to give His life a ransom for many.

He came to this world to die.

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The Lord Jesus Christ was consumed with a passion to do the will of His Father.

He was consumed with a passion to deliver people from the things that had them bound.

The Lord Jesus Christ was consumed with a passion to see the people saved!

The Message Of The Servant


Mark 1:14-15

The Lord Jesus Christ had been prepared for His earthly ministry.

Let us look now at the beginning of His Galilean ministry.

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The Framework Of His Message (14a)

Prior to His Galilean ministry, the Lord Jesus Christ had been ministering in the southern parts of Israel in Judea.

That 1st year of our Lord’s public ministry is called The Year of Obscurity.

It is found in the Gospel of John.

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The Lord Jesus Christ came into Galilee after John the Baptist was put into prison.

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The Focus Of His Message (14b)

When the Lord Jesus Christ came into Galilee, He came preaching the Gospel of the kingdom of God.

He came declaring the message of God.

It is a message of hope and glad tidings.

It is the good news of the kingdom of God.

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The Lord Jesus Christ came preaching a message of hope to a people trapped in despair.

They were hungry for a message of hope.

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The Force Of His Ministry (15)

The message preached by the Lord Jesus Christ was a message of urgency.

It was a message of confrontation.

The Lord Jesus Christ called upon His hearers to make a conscious decision to follow Him.

“The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand.”

The Lord Jesus Christ was preaching for immediate life change among His hearers.

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“Repent, and believe in the gospel.”

These two phrases reveal the heart of the Master’s message.

Repentance is a change of mind regarding the nature of sin.

Sin is seen as dark, dangerous and offensive to God.

Sin is to be avoided.

Sin is a pathway to destruction, death and Hell.

Believe is to regard the Gospel message to be true.

The message the Lord Jesus Christ is life changing for everyone who hears it and believes it.

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The message of the Lord Jesus Christ is a message of hope and salvation!

It is a message filled with promise, power and potential.

But it is a message that must be believed!

It is a message that must be accepted.

It is a message that must be proclaimed in these days!

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Have we repented of our sins and believed the Gospel message?

Have we accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as our personal Lord and Savior?

Can we sense the urgency of the hour?

Time is of the essence!

Repent and believe the Gospel so that we can be saved.

Come today. Come now.

Trust in the Lord Jesus Christ and be saved today!

The Lord Jesus Will Come Again


2 Peter 3:1-10 (NIV)

The Bible is worthy of our faith and acceptance. Every word in the Bible is inspired by God. Every promise God gave in His Word is worthy to be believed. It will come to pass just as He said. And when the Lord Jesus Christ promised to come back again, He meant that too!

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The Assurance Of The Scriptures (1-2)

The Bible is a perfect Book. It is the perfect revelation of God’s will to men. We can count on the Word of God!

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The Bible is a prophetic Book. Throughout the Bible, there are prophecies presented and fulfilled, over and over again.

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The Bible is a preserved Book. Every word in the Bible will literally come to pass.

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The Ignorance Of The Scoffers (3-7, 10)

The Doubt


They doubt the reality of Christ’s coming on the fact that nothing seems to change! All things continue as they have for ages. Therefore the threat of the end of the world may not be true! They fail to remember that God has already judged and destroyed the world once, and that God is not bound by time as men are.

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The Denial

They deny God’s revealed truth. They deny that God can and will judge the world.

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The Discovery

Why do they deny the teachings of the Scriptures? It is a problem of the heart. They do not wish to understand.

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The Patience Of The Savior (8-9)

God Is Punctual

God will come when the time is right for doing so. God never tarries. He will come swiftly, at the precise time and He will judge decisively.

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God Is Patient

The reason God waits is to allow lost men and women ample time to repent and to turn to Him.

It is not God’s design or desire to see us die lost and go to Hell. He desires to see us saved, so that we can spend eternity with Him in Heaven. Therefore, He waits, and calls, and gives us ample opportunities to get right with Him.

One day, God’s patience will be exhausted, and He will return to this earth. Then it will be too late to repent; there will be nothing more to look forward to but an eternity in Hell!

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God Has Promised

God will come again, just as He said He would.

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Are we ready to meet God? This message ought to make us consider the terrible danger we are in and cause us to run to Christ in repentance. These truths should stir our hearts and make us want to get as close to the Lord Jesus Christ as we can get so that in the time remaining, we might be used by Him to touch this world. There are multitudes all around us who have never received the Lord Jesus Christ as their Savior. We might be the one to reach them.

Reminders For Pilgrims And Strangers


1 Peter 2:9-12 (NIV)

As believers, we are pilgrims and strangers.

This world is not our home.

We are pilgrims passing through earth on our way to Heaven.

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We are to be heavenly minded.

We obey the laws of the land.

But the law and will of God is far superior to that of this world.

We are to live like heaven born people!

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The apostle Peter gives us some reminders as to how we are to conduct ourselves in this world.

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A Reminder Of Our Past Situation (2:9-10)

We have a dark past.

When the Lord Jesus Christ came to us, He found us in the darkness of sin.

He found us when we lived as we pleased and were unaware of the bondage of our sins.

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We have a despised past.

When the Lord Jesus Christ came to us, we were outcasts!

We were a fallen race of people.

We were enemies of God.

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We have a deadly past.

When the Lord Jesus Christ came for us, we were totally unworthy of the mercy and grace He extended to us!

we deserve to be in Hell!

It was grace that reached down into the hell of our darkness and delivered us from such a wretched existence!

It was grace and grace alone that made the difference in our lives.

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A Reminder Of Our Present Standing (2:9)

We are a new creation.

We are a chosen people.

The glorious and gracious God has reached into the world of lost humanity and chose for Himself a people.

And He did this according to His own will.

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We have a new communion.

We are a royal priesthood.

When we were lost, we were totally separated from God.

Now we have been brought near to God by the blood of the Lord Jesus Christ.

We have unrestricted and unhindered access into the presence of God.

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We have a new character.

We are a holy nation.

God, through the Lord Jesus Christ, has produced a change in us that allows us to be holy!

We are given a new nature.

Now, through the work of the Holy Spirit, we can produce works of true holiness, pleasing to the Lord!

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We have a new classification.

We are God’s special possession.

We are His precious people.

God paid a high price for us.

Now He possesses us and we are precious to Him.

And God will keep a close watch on us.

He will look after us with the greatest of care.

He will protect us and shelter us.

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A Reminder Of Our Present Service (2:9-12)

We are from another world.

We are ambassadors from heaven to this world.

We are to do all we can to share the culture of our homeland with the earth bound people living around us.

We are to show and tell them how the citizens of Heaven live their lives!

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We are to declare the truth about our Savior.

We are to “declare the praises of Him”.

We are to vocally declare what the Lord Jesus Christ has done for us.

We are to declare God’s excellent qualities to a lost and dying world.

We should be a vocal people in our willingness and our desire to share Him with the world!

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We are to demonstrate the truth of our salvation.

We must have a pure walk.

As citizens of Heaven, we are to avoid living like the citizens of the earth.

We are not to have our witness ruined and our lives enslaved by the power of the lusts of the flesh.

We must be a powerful witness.

We are to live right in front of a lost world.

They may criticize us for the standards we have or for the things we oppose.

But if we are consistent and holy in our walk and dealings with them, they will be touched by our good works.

Some will even be saved as a result.

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Until the Lord Jesus Christ comes, we will be pilgrims and strangers in this world.

We are surrounded by people who need to hear about the Lord Jesus Christ and see His truth lives out by those who claim to know Him.

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We should seek to promote the culture of Heaven in this world.

Paul’s Final Exhortation


Titus 3:9-15

The apostle Paul had given the young pastor Titus several instructions about running the church in Crete.

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Titus was to set things in order, to appoint elders, to rebuke false teachers, and to teach the believers that doing good deeds is sound doctrine.

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Now we come to Paul's final exhortation to Titus before closing with some personal notes.

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Avoid Controversies (3:9)

Titus was to avoid arguments because they are unprofitable and useless.

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Reject A Divisive Man (3:10-11)

Titus was to reject someone who spread private opinions around and causing division.

He was told to reject him or her after two confrontations.

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If someone has a different view, or cannot submit to the authority of the church, then he or she shouldn't stay and cause division.

He or she should leave quietly and alone, without mounting a rebellion and building a team.

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There is to be no tolerance for those who cause division in the church.

They are to be removed, rejected, and disfellowshipped until they repent and change their ways.

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Paul Made Some Personal Notes (3:12-15)

Artemas and Zenas are unknown to us outside of this reference.

But we can examine the ministry of Tychicus in the book of Ephesians (6:19-24) and Colossians (4:7-18).

Apollos is the best-known of the four.

He was an Alexandrian Jew who was a powerful Bible teacher.

He became an evangelist and a leader in the church after he learned the complete gospel message (Acts 18).

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Finally, Paul told Titus that true Christianity is not inactive or unfruitful.

It is to serve others.

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Titus' job as the pastor was to teach the people of the church to do good deeds and meet pressing needs.

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Real Bible teaching teaches the real body of Christ to do real ministry until there really is unity.

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May God's grace be with us all.


Church Elder Isn't Quick-Tempered


Titus 1:7b (NKJV)

Church elder is blameless.

Church elder is the husband of one wife.

Church elder is having faithful children not accused of dissipation or insubordination.

Church elder is a steward of God.

Church elder isn't self-willed.

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The sixth attribute of a Church elder is he isn't quick-tempered.

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The Pitfalls Of Being Quick-Tempered

When a Church elder is quick-tempered, he will make a fool of himself.

A quick-tempered man acts foolishly. (Prov. 14:17)

When we let our tempers flare, we are guaranteed to act stupidly, rashly and do things we will later regret.

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The Benefits Of Being Slow To Anger

The Bible speaks of the benefits of not being quick-tempered.

One of those benefits is...

He who is slow to wrath has great understanding. (Proverbs 14:29)

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Church elder who is slow to anger always gets the whole story.

He will always get all the facts and can make a rational decision.

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Church elder who is slow to anger has the ability to calm things down.

A wrathful man stirs up strife, but he who is slow to anger allays contention. (Prov. 15:18)

Being slow-tempered gives us the power to pacify a situation, instead of intensifying it.

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We Are Commanded To Be Slow To Anger

Not only is being slow to anger commended, it is commanded:

Let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God. (James 1:19-20)

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We can't achieve the righteousness of God by being quick-tempered because God Himself is not quick-tempered.

God is slow to anger, and as imitators of Him, we are to be as well.

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How To Be Slow To Anger

(a) Discretion

The discretion of a man makes him slow to anger, and his glory is to overlook a transgression. (Prov. 19:11)

What makes us slow to anger?

Our discretion.

Discretion is the freedom, the authority, and the power to make our own choices and make decisions.

God the Father has given us a new heart and set us free from that old bondage.

We have got a new heritage now as children of God and citizens of heaven.

We now have the freedom in Christ to walk in righteousness, and no longer enslaved by sin.

We now have the authority to deny sin and walk in victory.

We now have the power of the Holy Spirit to conquer our flesh.

In other words, our temper is at our discretion.

We have the freedom, authority, and power to make our own choice, whether to become angry or not.

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(b) Wisdom

A fool vents all his feelings, but a wise man holds them back. (Prov. 29:11)

It is wisdom that will enable us to hold our temper back.

When we fear the Lord God, we will learn to be wise.

When we realize and recognize that God judges sin, we will desire to refrain from it.

Our true fear of God will cause us to hold back our temper.

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3) Self-Control

The third place of realizing victory is found in Proverbs 16:

He who is slow to anger is better than the mighty, and he who rules his spirit than he who takes a city. (Prov. 16:32)

Being slow to anger is being able to rule our spirit and to have self-control.

And self-control comes from being filled with the Spirit, and walking in the Spirit.

When we follow the Spirit instead of the flesh, self-control will be a byproduct in our life.

The Purpose Of Paul's Apostleship


Titus 1:1b

Paul called himself a bondservant of God.

He was also an apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ.

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Paul was an apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ for two reasons.

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Firstly, it was for the faith of God's elect (1:1b)

Paul knew that it was essential for the people to come to faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.

But he also knew that the message of the Lord Jesus Christ must be distributed by the mouths of His followers.

Paul was sent by the Lord Jesus Christ as an apostle to preach the gospel so that the people would hear, believe, call on the Lord, and be saved.

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But Paul also said that his apostleship was specifically for the faith of "God's elect."

Paul knew that not everyone would respond to the message of the Lord Jesus Christ with faith.

He knew that some were not going to be saved.

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The message of the Lord Jesus Christ is not for the faith of those who choose God.

Rather, it is for the faith of those chosen of God.

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Secondly, it was for the acknowledgment of the truth which accords with godliness. (1:1b)

The acknowledgment of the truth is very important for Christians.

We need to have a proper understanding of God's way, His will, His methods, and His character.

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God wants us to know the whole truth.

God's desire isn't just that we be saved, but that we also come to a knowledge of the truth.

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Believing is certainly the beginning.

But we are called to continue in the Word of God and to know the truth.

And the truth will make us free (John 8:31-32).

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The truth is according to godliness.

Knowledge of the truth is preceded by repentance.

And the truth is always based on godly living.

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We are not to treat God's grace with contempt.

Rather, we must show reverence and respect towards God in our behavior.

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God's chosen people must hear the gospel and believe it.

They must know the whole truth.

And they must live a godly life.

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We must be diligent to make our calling and election sure.

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The apostleship of Paul was for the combined purposes of evangelism and discipleship.

Be Faithful


2 Timothy 2:11-19 (NIV)

2:11 Die To Sin

"If we died with Him, we will also live with Him."

The death here is a death to sin.

Since we are saved by grace, we are to deny sin in our lives.

We won't want to continue in sin.

We will desire to live a life pleasing to God, in love and thankfulness for His sacrifice for us.

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2:12 Endure The Trials Of Faith

"If we endure, we will also reign with Him."

There is an endurance that is necessary in the Christian walk.

It is a continuing and growing faith.

We can't give up.

We can't flake out.

We have got to keep going and persevering through trials and sufferings.

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And if we endure, we will be rewarded at the end of our race.

We will rule and reign with the Lord Jesus Christ as kings and priests in His new kingdom.

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"If we disown Him, He will also disown us"

If we fail to endure, we are saying that the Lord Jesus Christ wasn't enough to carry us through our difficulties.

We are saying that the power of His resurrection was insufficient.

If we have done this and are feeling condemned, we must repent of the sin.

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2:13 God Is Faithful To His Word

"If we are faithless, He remains faithful, for He cannot disown Himself"

Even when people do not believe in the Lord Jesus Christ, even when they reject the gospel, God remains faithful to His Word.

He will never deny that He has promised salvation to all who believe.

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2:14-15 Don't Wrangle About Words

Pastor is to charge the people not to wrangle about words.

When Christians argue over trivial matters, it brings ruin to the hearers.

Being argumentative with other Christians will quickly turn people away from desiring salvation.

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Christians are to prove themselves to be honorable, trustworthy, regarding the Word of God, a workman who doesn't need to be ashamed.

They are to handle the word of truth accurately.

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2:16-19 The Lord Knows Those Who Are His

If we are the Lord's, He knows it.

He also knows if we are not His.

Today, if we are not His, He is calling us to repentance.

Some Partings Words Of Advice


1 Timothy 6:1-21 (NIV)

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6:1-2 Honor The Master

There were many people in Ephesus that had come to Christ when they were slaves.

Paul was telling Timothy how to address their situations.

They were to honor their masters.

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Although we are not slaves, many of us are employed by another person.

But do we honor our bosses, our managers, or supervisors?

Have we given them any reason to speak against Christianity?

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Some of us have Christian bosses.

There are many Christian employees that have a wrong attitude about their Christian bosses.

They do not show them proper respect because they are brothers.

They don't devote themselves to the proper diligence.

They don't honor their work commitment.

We should be serving Christian bosses even greater than non-Christians.

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6:3-5 Submit to The Word of God

So many false doctrines are easily recognized as such if we just hold them up to the light of the Word of God.

And the ones that are still questionable can be extinguished by holding them up to doctrines of godliness.

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6:6-10 Learn To Be Contented

Paul pointed out that godliness is a means of great gain if it is accompanied by contentment.

This great gain is not a financial gain.

It is a gain in the quality of our life and happiness.

Contentment is such a great gain for happiness in this life.

When we are not content, it will lead to all kinds of evil.

If we continue to love money, we are in danger of wandering away from the faith.

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6:11-19 Pursue Spiritual Things

Paul encouraged Timothy to flee from the material desires of life.

Paul wanted Timothy to pursue spiritual things that would affect him for all eternity: a righteous life, godly behavior, and a gentle spirit.

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6:20-21 Keep Guard

Paul gave the young pastor Timothy a final word of exhortation.

Timothy was to keep away from the pseudo-intellectual arguments of unbelievers.

Timothy was to keep away from small talk and time-wasting conversations.

Timothy was to focus on what really matters.


Overseer And Deacon


1 Timothy 3:1-13 (NIV)

Whoever aspires to be an overseer desires a noble task.

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An overseer, an elder or a bishop is responsible for the spiritual ministry in the church.

It is a good aspiration.

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The first thing about the overseer is he must be above reproach.

There shouldn't be anything in his life that would cause people to reproach him and the Lord Jesus Christ whom he serves.

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He must be completely devoted to the woman he married to right now.

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He must be sober and free from self-indulgence.

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He must be a respectable man.

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He must be friendly.

He must show care and concern for people.

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He must be able to teach the Word of God.

He must know the Word and is able to tell others what it says.

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He is to abstain from drinking alcohol.

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He must be gentle and uncontentious.

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He must be free from the love of money.

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He must manage his own household well.

His children may not be perfect.

But he will consistently discipline rebellion in his children with the proper seriousness, and raise them in a godly home.

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He must not be a new convert.

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He must have a reputation of a good man, a good Christian, a good employee, a good neighbor, etc.

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The next office in the church is the deacon.

He has to do with the physical ministry in the church.

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Deacon must be a man of dignity.

He must be sincere.

He must show proper seriousness when he ministers to the people's needs.

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He must not be addicted to much wine.

He must not get drunk.

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He must never accept or pursue dirty money.

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He must keep hold of the deep truths of the faith with a clear conscience.

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He must first be tested.

He must pass the test of time, the testing of faith, the test of his life, etc.

If he is above reproach, then let him serve as a deacon.

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His wife must be worthy of respect.

His wife must not be malicious talkers but temperate and trustworthy in everything.

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He must be a man of one woman.

He must esteem marriage highly.

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He must manage his family well.

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He who serves well as a deacon will obtain an excellent standing and great assurance in their faith in Christ Jesus.

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Are you interested to serve as an overseer or a deacon in your church?

Tell The Truth


1 Timothy 1:1-7

Paul is the writer of this letter.

He wrote this letter around the year 63 or 64 AD.

Paul was writing to Timothy, a young man whom Paul had left in Ephesus to pastor the church there.

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Paul calls Timothy "a true son in the faith."

Paul was Timothy's spiritual father.

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Grace is God's unmerited favor upon us.

There was nothing attractive or desirable about us.

But God loved us anyway.

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We don't deserve salvation.

We don't deserve heaven.

We don't deserve to have our sin freely paid for.

That is grace.

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When we finally understand the grace of God, we have complete peace.

People who don't understand God's grace don't have peace.

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We also need all the mercy we can get!

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Paul had ordained Timothy as the pastor of the Ephesian church.

Paul had chosen Timothy to be the pastor because he knew the Word of God and was like-minded with Paul.

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Paul knew certain men in the church who had strong opinions about unbiblical things.

They were Christians, but they were teaching strange doctrines.

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Paul told Timothy to pastor the church, and to instruct these men not to teach anything that deviated from the words of Jesus Christ, or the teaching of godliness.

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Many strange doctrines arise from myths.

Some strange doctrines come from endless genealogies.

And there are also strange doctrines that come from speculation.

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Timothy's job was to tell people the truth.

There is plenty of truth in the Word of God to occupy ourselves with for the rest of our lives.

Our goal is to teach people the Word of God so that they may possess love, a good conscience, and sincere faith.

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When people turn away from the Truth, they turn aside to fruitless discussion.

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What they really ought to be doing is studying the Word, gaining an understanding of the basics, then applying them to their lives.

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We really need to speak the Truth.


If Only We Were There


Matthew 28:1-7

Now after the Sabbath, as the first day of the week began to dawn, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to see the tomb. (Matthew 28:1)

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These women left when it was dark.

They arrived at the tomb just at the breaking of dawn.

They loved the Lord.

They came out of sympathy.

They didn’t come to see the resurrection.

They came to see the grave.

It was an act of compassion.

It was an act of sympathy.

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And behold, there was a great earthquake; for an angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat on it. (Matthew 28:2)

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This was the second earthquake.

There was an earthquake when Christ died.

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It was a great earthquake caused by an angel of the Lord descended from heaven.

It was caused by the arrival of an angel to open the tomb.

The angel came and moved the stone to let the women in so that they could see that the Lord Jesus Christ was already gone.

He was risen!


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His countenance was like lightning, and his clothing as white as snow. And the guards shook for fear of him, and became like dead men. (Matthew 28:3-4)

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It was the holy angel.

His face was glowing.

His garment was white as snow.

And the guards experienced a personal shock.

They went into temporary coma.

They were knocked literally unconscious out of terror.

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But the angel answered and said to the women, "Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for He is risen, as He said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. And go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead, and indeed He is going before you into Galilee; there you will see Him. Behold, I have told you." (Matthew 28:5-7)

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The soldiers had reason to fear when the Lord Jesus Christ arose.

But not the women.

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They came out of devotion.

Their faith was weak.

Their understanding was feeble.

But the Lord God was gracious.

He recognized their love and He responded in grace.

And he said, "I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. He is not here; for He is risen, as He said."

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The Lord Jesus Christ was risen.

He’s alive.

This was exactly what He said He would do on the third day.

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Then the angel said, "Come, see the place where the Lord lay."

The angel then concluded with a command, "And go quickly and tell His disciples that He is risen from the dead."

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Why were those women the first to see the angel and the living Christ?

Because they were there.

They were there and so they saw it.

If anybody else would have been there, they would have seen it.

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If only we are like those women.

What we lack in faith, we make up for in devotion.

What we lack in understanding, we make up for in loyalty.

And God will turn our weakness into strength because we were there.

We are faithful enough and loyal enough to be where God is...

And where He is moving...

And where He is working...

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If only we were there.


Come Down From The Cross


Matthew 27:38-44

Then two robbers were crucified with Him, one on the right and another on the left. (Matthew 27:38)

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Pilate dishonored the Lord Jesus Christ by crucifying Him between robbers.

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Even the robbers who were crucified with Him reviled Him with the same thing. (Matthew 27:44)

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The two robbers heaped insults on Him.

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The two robbers were wicked.

Their lives revolved around the loot they could steal.

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There are people like the robbers among us today.

They know about the Lord Jesus Christ.

But their lives revolve around material things.

They have little regard for righteousness or truth.

They live to indulge themselves, and pay a great price for it.

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And those who passed by blasphemed Him, wagging their heads and saying, "You who destroy the temple and build it in three days, save Yourself! If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross." (Matthew 27:39-40)

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The same crowd that cried "Crucify Him!" had hailed Him a few days earlier with their hosannas (Matthew 21:9).

But now He was a victim of the Romans, they rejected Him.

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They kept on reviling Him with continual defamation and blasphemy.

They wagged their heads in taunting fashion and saying, "You who destroy the temple and build it in three days, save Yourself! If You are the Son of God, come down from the cross."

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Those were the two accusations that came out against the Lord Jesus Christ in the trial before Annas and Caiaphas.

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Those were the two accusations that the Jewish leaders used to incite the mindless passers-by to mock the Lord Jesus Christ as He suffered on the cross.

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There are people like the mindless crowd among us today.

They’re interested in the Lord Jesus Christ only if He can bring immediate satisfaction.

If He doesn’t deliver what they want when they want it, they forget Him.

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Likewise the chief priests also, mocking with the scribes and elders, said, "He saved others; Himself He cannot save. If He is the King of Israel, let Him now come down from the cross, and we will believe Him. He trusted in God; let Him deliver Him now if He will have Him; for He said, 'I am the Son of God.'" (Matthew 27:41-43)

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The religious leaders were insincere and hypocritical.

They were the lowest level of blasphemers.

They appeared to represent God, to know the truth, and to be pure, godly, and virtuous.

But they hated the Lord Jesus Christ.


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The religious people who supposedly knew everything there was to know about God, mocked the Lord Jesus Christ.

They didn’t talk to the Lord Jesus Christ like the crowd did.

They despised Him so much that they wouldn’t talk to Him.

Instead, they talked to each other about Him.

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The Lord Jesus Christ would not come down from the cross.

He had to die for the ignorant soldiers.

He had to die for the materialistic thieves.

He had to die for the mindless crowd.

And he had to die for the vile religious leaders.

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So great is the compassion of God that the Lord Jesus Christ died for all who would crucify Him.

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The Lord Jesus Christ stayed on the cross not because He couldn’t come down, but because He wouldn’t come down.

Our Savior shed His tears for those who shed His blood.

Such is the compassion of God.

And such is the gift of salvation.


Peter's Denial of Christ


Matthew 26:58, 69-75

But Peter followed Him at a distance to the high priest’s courtyard. And he went in and sat with the servants to see the end. (Matthew 26:58)

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All the disciples fled when the Lord Jesus Christ was taken prisoner.

But Peter couldn’t stay away.

He was pulled along by his love for the Lord Jesus Christ.

So he followed the Lord Jesus Christ at a distance.

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Peter wanted to see the outcome of the trial.

It was 1 a.m. in the morning.

The trial would last about two hours.

Peter sat with the soldiers warming himself.

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Now Peter sat outside in the courtyard. And a servant girl came to him, saying, "You also were with Jesus of Galilee." But he denied it before them all, saying, "I do not know what you are saying." (Matthew 26:69-70)

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Peter was exposed by a servant girl!

He was caught off guard.

His involuntary reaction revealed his character to be weak and sinful.

He was not prepared for the situation!

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And when he had gone out to the gateway, another girl saw him and said to those who were there, "This fellow also was with Jesus of Nazareth." But again he denied with an oath, "I do not know the Man!" (Matthew 26:71-72)

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After denying the Lord by the fire, Peter couldn’t leave immediately or it would look like he was lying.

So he hung around for a little while.

Then he moved away from the fire inconspicuously.

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But again he was exposed.

This time by another girl!

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Peter was angry, embarrassed, frustrated, afraid, and confused.

His denial became more vehement.

This time he told two lies.

He lied by claiming he didn’t know the Lord Jesus Christ.

And he lied by taking an oath to his truthfulness.

Peter’s second denial demonstrates his lack of trust in God.

He could have spoken the truth and committed himself to the care of the Lord.

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And a little later those who stood by came up and said to Peter, "Surely you also are one of them, for your speech betrays you." Then he began to curse and swear, saying, "I do not know the Man!" Immediately a rooster crowed.

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After his second denial, Peter still hung around for a while.

The first two denials took place in the first hour.

Another hour had gone by.

Peter couldn’t quite bring himself to leave.

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Peter’s Galilean accent was distinguishable.

Those who heard Peter speak confronted him about it.

This time Peter began to curse and swear.

He began with a single lie.

Then to cover that up he lied twice.

And then to cover that up he let loose with a flurry of curses and swears.

The Lord Jesus Christ’s prediction came to pass!

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And Peter remembered the word of Jesus who had said to him, "Before the rooster crows, you will deny Me three times." So he went out and wept bitterly. (Matthew 26:75)

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Peter repented.

He wept bitterly.

Peter saw the face of the Lord Jesus Christ and he remembered His words.

He saw how he had offended the Lord Jesus Christ.

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John 21 describes how the Lord Jesus Christ put Peter back on his feet and back in ministry.

After that, Peter became the great proclaimer of the gospel in the early church.

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God gives grace to sinners and restores the fallen.

He picks up even the person who has denied Him and shown himself to be weak, and puts him in a place of strength.

Peter denied the Lord Jesus Christ 3 times.

But the Lord Jesus Christ restored Peter.