How Do I Experience God?
1 John is one of the greatest places in the Bible to test one’s assurance of salvation. John gives us three external tests and one internal test. The external tests are behavioral, relational, and doctrinal. The internal test is an experience of knowing God—with all the connotations of the Biblical word “know.”
Genesis 4:1; Matthew 7:22-23; Hebrews 11:2; Galatians 2:14.
We mistake the purpose of prayer when we interpret it as little more than a means of persuading God to grant our petitions. This is why when Jesus instructs us how to pray, He has us pray “thy will be done” before we ever ask for our daily bread. When we pray as Jesus taught, we find that the true purpose of prayer is to get God Himself, not merely to get God’s gifts.
The benediction at the conclusion of a church service is not merely a perfunctory few words while the congregation reaches for their bags. Rather, it is a reminder of the great blessing of God. In this sermon, Tim Keller explains what God’s blessing is, how we can get it, and how it reshapes our lives.
Genesis 1; Genesis 49; Exodus 33:20; Hebrews 10: 11-12; John 1:14; 2 Corinthians 4:6; Genesis 27:11-13; Mark 1:11; John 17; Matthew 28:19; Romans 12:14.
The reality of God is far greater than our conceptions of God. In this passage, Elijah, persecuted and feeling hopeless, returns to the mountain where God appeared to Moses and hopes for a similar spectacular revelation of His glory. Yet God confounds and comforts Elijah by appearing as a still small voice.
Additional scriptural references made in this sermon are: John 11:21-35; Luke 16:19-31; Luke 9:28-36; Proverbs 11:29; Matthew 11:2.
Only God can bring us to the place where we are earnestly seeking him. When we begin to experience a spiritual appetite for him and his presence, we will know that we belong to him.
The worship of the living God gives us peace and equilibrium to face the troubles of life. Worship engages our entire being in adoration and brings us to a sense of joy in God’s ravishing beauty.
When we say "hallowed be thy name," we are making the adoration of God the ultimate concern of our lives. By giving God the praise he deserves, we will heal our worldview as well as our souls.
Jesus tangles with the beliefs of the most scrupulous scripture readers, the Pharisees. He argues that Scripture is divine testimony but that it is still possible to believe this testimony as true and be as deaf to what God is saying as if you had no faith at all. The purpose of the entire Bible is to point us to Jesus. Each story is not an end in itself but the means to illuminate the Son.
If you want to gaze on the gospel as “the angels long to do,” you need to understand what the gospel is, how to gaze into it, and how to read the Old and New Testaments in light of Christ.
Jesus tells his disciples to have private prayer lives. Using the disciplines of morning and evening prayer, we can process our lives before God and bring him our requests while being at peace with the outcome. This talk was given during a leadership training session at Redeemer Presbyterian Church in New York City, and includes suggestions concerning Bible study, meditation, and contemplation.