Redeemer Presbyterian Church Sermons
Christmas shows why Christianity is unique. In all other religions, a prophet arrives and teaches how we can find eternal life. In Christianity, God comes to us and gives himself as the way to eternal life. Christmas shows that salvation is by grace, that we can have true intimacy with God, that love really matters, and that there exists an unceasing river of joy beneath all the sorrows of this world.
Romans 8:28 is one of the most famous verses in the Bible. People love the thought that God works out all things for good for those who love Him. Yet, Romans 8:28 is intimately connected with Romans 8:29-30 where God promises to bodily resurrect those He has called. In other words, the Bible does not promise that Christians will have more pleasant circumstances in this life than non-Christians. The Bible promises a better life to come—not better life circumstances in this world.
Is happiness possible? Is the very notion of happiness a fraud that intelligent people have learned to see through? The Bible believes that happiness is real, but that true happiness is extremely different than what people normally seek. Biblical happiness is an unwavering happiness that does not depend upon everything going well in our lives.
Additional scriptural references made in this sermon are: 2 Peter 1:4; 1 Peter 1:6; Matthew 6:31-34; Jeremiah 17; Luke 15:21.
We are smothering under our small ambitions. Our hearts and minds were made for nobler things. God does not bless Christians merely to fulfill their individual needs, but sends them out on mission to display Jesus and to meet the needs of others.
Additional scriptural references made in this sermon are: John 4:13-14; Isaiah 6; Genesis 12.
A Christian is not a person free from sorrow. On the contrary, when a person becomes a Christian, God softens that person’s heart so that they become even more vulnerable to the world’s pains. Yet, a Christian is someone who has a deep joy that can never be taken away. Sorrow is temporary, but a Christian’s joy is permanent.
Additional scriptural references made in this sermon are: Psalm 30:5; Proverbs 8; John 1:1; Zephaniah 3:17; Hebrews 12:2; Ezekiel 36:26; Job 1:22; 1 Peter 1:6; Romans 5:3-5; 1 Thessalonians 4:13.
Meeting with God and grasping the grace he freely gives us changes our relationship to our money, possessions, and career. When we see that salvation cannot be earned or gained through hard work, we are freed from the idolatry of wealth. When we experience this freedom, we can give with spontaneity and joy.
Our God works, is creative, and rests. We are made in his image and should mirror these attributes. In this letter, Paul gives the young Christians in Thessalonica practical advice on how to work, not only to be successful and to earn a living, but to fulfill our highest calling: to please God.
Suffering is inevitable, and we should always expect tears. But by investing our tears we can not only grow from them but eventually find joy through them. In praying our tears, we remember God's grace, behold the cross and find assurance in glory yet to come.
We need a living hope to get through life and endure suffering. A living hope enables us to have both sorrow and joy. Our living hope is an inheritance achieved for us by Christ.
Lust exists, it is powerful, and we must respect its power. The Bible rejoices in sex and sexual desire, but lust is an impersonal, inordinate desire and an idolatrous search for meaning. Lust can be overcome if you esteem Jesus as your bridegroom and the lover of your soul.