Our Sunday afternoon series over the past 8 weeks at Grace Fellowship Church has been focused on trying to help Christians learn how to interact in thoughtful, loving, and engaging ways with people of other worldviews. We began by thinking about our own worldview, and how it is grounded in the gospel. We also examined the nature of ‘worldview’ in general.
Over the last few weeks we’ve been dealing with common objections to the Christian faith and asking, ‘How do we understand this objection within its worldview? And where does the gospel-oriented worldview of a Christian intersect that worldview?’ This past week we were blessed to have Ian Clary come and speak to us about ‘The problem of evil’ and how to engage people who see this objection as a basis for rejecting Christianity. I highly recommend giving it a listen.
Ian made many good points and gave us all a lot things to think about as we seek to speak truth in love to our neighbours for whom this problem poses a genuine difficulty in coming to faith. He taught us about syllogisms and even some Latin phrases — and we had some fun with it. But one thing stuck out to me.
Someone recently recommended the ministry of Matt Chandler to me, so I decided to give him a listen. Immediately I was drawn to a series of sermons he did a few years ago on ‘The Role of Men’.
Over the past few days I’ve been listening to these three sermons, and have sensed God doing a good work in me through them, convicting me of sin and spurring me on to growth in holiness.
Let me heartily recommend these sermons to you. Here’s what I think you should do.
If you are a married man:
Download the sermons
Block of some time with just you and your wife
Listen to these sermons
Talk, think, and pray together about how God would have you grow and what God would have you change.
If you are a single guy:
Download the sermons
Get some good friends together
Listen to these sermons
Talk, think, and pray together about how God is calling each of you to prepare now to be the husband and father God is calling you to be, or about how God is refining you to serve him as a single man in his church.
In either case, I guarantee you will be blessed. Below are the links for the sermons.
This morning we looked at the two Sabbath controversy stories in Mark’s Gospel (Mk 2:23-3:6). What we saw is that Jesus continues to ‘burst the wineskins’ of Jewish expectations for their Messiah (Mk 2:18-22). As with demons, disease, forgiveness of sins, and association with sinners, Jesus continues to take every opportunity he can to proclaim his greatness and superiority to all that has come before.
That kind of a claim is either loving and kind (if true) or arrogant and insane (if untrue). The question the Pharisees faced on that fateful Sabbath is the same question we face today: Who is this man Jesus?
Okay, so as backward as this may seem, here is the audio from week 3, Mark 1.21-45: The Powerful Mercy of God on Display. Due to some technical difficulties, the posting of the audio was delayed until now. This is the sermon from January 30.
As with the others, use the player below to stream, or right-click and ‘save as…’ on the link to download the mp3.
Today I had the privilege of preaching the beginning of the Gospel according to Mark in our second week as a church.
Rarely, if ever, in my study for preaching have I been so floored by the wisdom and the plan of God as he puts the gospel of Jesus into action. Rarely, if ever, have I seen the deity of Jesus so supremely and transparently evident as in this section of Scripture.
What an amazing blessing to be able to study the Word and the teach it week-by-week! I’m so thankful for the blessing I received this week in the study–I only pray that some of that over-flowed in blessing the people.
Anyway, while we’re currently figuring out website and hosting issues, I’ll continue to post the sermons online here. You can stream or download below.
About 2,000 years ago the very first church was started. It was relatively small and insignificant. But when the Holy Spirit came with power, the hearts of people were turned to their God, souls were saved, and many were added to their number. The story of the church ever since that day has been one of remarkable growth and remarkable struggle (just like Jesus said it would — Matt 13.24-30).
Yesterday, we were glad to begin a new chapter in that story as we began just one more small church, designed to preach the Jesus who divides by calling all to himself. As far as the world is concerned, our work is insignificant. But from the perspective of a gospel-believer, the building up of the church through local assemblies all around the world is profound evidence that Jesus is living and working and using his authority to do what he said — he is building his church (Matt 16.18; Matt 28.18-20). What a great reason to praise God!
Our first morning service was a joyous occasion, clearly the result and fruit of much prayer offered by many friends and family. I had word from people from Australia to Victoria, BC, to right here in Toronto that we were being prayed for. God heard and God worked. Thank you for praying!
We were blessed to have Nick and Alicia leading us as we worshipped in song. Bill and Nabil gave thanks to God for establishing this church and prayed prayers of dedication for us. By God’s grace I was able to preach an overview of the message of the gospel of Mark asking, ‘Who Is This Man Jesus?’ and then speaking of where God will take us as we study his word together.
All in all there were about 40 souls (including children) gathered in the living room / dining room of this Toronto home. Most of those were core, committed people. Some of those were visitors. All of us were eager to be together to delight in God for the glory of God, and for the good of all people. As the Lord gives growth, we’ll give him thanks! And as the Lord gives grace, we’ll continue to grow in our delight in him so that he’ll be honoured through our little part in this amazing story of Jesus building his church and conquering in the world.
May he continue to do great things in us and through us, all to his glory!
Update: You can stream or download the audio from the sermon below.