Posts Tagged ‘Kishwaukee Community Church’

The Pastoral Office

Colossians 1:23-2:3

Preaching Notes – June 10, 2012

Colossians 1:24-2:3

Now I rejoice in my sufferings for your sake, and in my flesh I am filling up what is lacking in Christ’s afflictions for the sake of his body, that is, the church, of which I became a minister according to the stewardship from God that was given to me for you, to make the word of God fully known, the mystery hidden for ages and generations but now revealed to his saints. 

To them God chose to make known how great among the Gentiles are the riches of the glory of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory.  Him we proclaim, warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom, that we may present everyone mature in Christ.  For this I toil, struggling with all his energy that he powerfully works within me. 

I want you to know how great a struggle I have for you and for those at Laodicea and for all who have not seen me face to face, that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God’s mystery, which is Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

All are called by God

We believe you are here because God called you here

God called you for 2 Purposes – Genesis 12:1-3

1.  To be blessed

2.  To be a blessing to us and through us

High value on God’s ministry through you, here

Members have always been the strength of every church

God speaks to and through you

God works through you

Comparison to the call on Pastors

Sisters of St. Joseph’s

Nun servings at hospital CEO

Nuns typically known for compassionate ministry

Shift of Minister’s work from Pastor to Administrator



Customer Service-Community Relations

Degrades the role of both pastor and parishioner

Mega-churches diminished role of parishioner

bean counted, bean supplier, happy customer

Paul’s understanding of his call

Intro to his letters

Servant of Christ Jesus

Prisoner of Christ Jesus

Apostle set apart for the Gospel

  of Jesus Christ by will of God

    sent by God

Servant defines who is His Lord

Prisoner defines his loss of free will

Apostle defines his role

Paul’s call as an Apostle – from Letter to Colossians 1:24-2:3

To make the Word of God fully known (1:25)

To his saints (those who received his grace) (1:26)

1.  Warning everyone and teaching everyone with all wisdom (1:28)

2.  Present everyone mature in Christ (1:28)

3.  That their hearts may be encouraged (2:2)

4.  Being knit together in love (2:2)

5.  To give full assurance of understanding & knowledge of God (2:3)

Paul’s fulfillment of his call as Apostle in all his letters

3 types of writings in his letters

Teaching – God and His ways

Application – how to live God’s way

Exhortation – encouragement and motivation

A Ministry of the Word – Peter in Acts 6:4

We will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word

Expectations for Pastor’s in Today’s Church

CEO, Visionary, Growth, Recruiter, Customer Relations, Deacon

Paul never took on these roles

These roles filled by members of church, see Acts and Paul’s Letters

Eugene Peterson’s understanding in The Pastor

Preacher – teach the Word

Priest – pray for God to work

Pastor – care and counseling

Helping you see and find God in your life

Helping you make sense of God’s work in your life

NOT – fixing or managing you

NOT – fixing or managing ministry

==> My emphasis on

Elder’s as spiritual leaders 

Parishioners as servants doing God’s ministry

Any time a Pastor expends energy as CEO Minister

The ministry of the Word is diminished in the church 

==> our ministry is diminished

I do not want to build a “pastor-centered” ministry

Different Roles

Pastor – Bring the Word

Elders – Lead according to the Word

Members – Ministry of the Word

As members you are called here by God for a purpose

What is He calling you to do? 

This is your ministry work


I would like … this is not a question servants or prisoners answer

A call for someone else to do

To complain about ministry

Focus on 

His Word to You

His call for you

His work through you

He has placed you in this community

To do this ministry

Not alone, but as part of the body

Share His call with appropriate Ministry Team

Let Ministry Team affirm His call for you

Work within Ministry Team to fulfill this call

When we get it wrong

Visiting at VPC ==> neglect of the ministry of The Word

Read Full Post »

Your Best Love, 4

1 Corinthians 13

Preaching notes

I.  Quick Review

A.  1st 2 Weeks – The Spirit of Marriage – Ephesians 5 and Philippians 2

Relate to spouse/love as

Christ to you – die, serve, to present us without blemish

You to Christ – submit, serve, think of them, one mind, Christ’s mind

B.  5 Tasks of Marriage – Genesis 2

    1. Help Mate
    2. Soul Mate – emotional and spiritually
    3. Team Mate
    4. Mating Mate
    5. Life Mate

Not Lifetime Achievement

Daily Tasks

        • Help Mate – always find at least one thing to do for spouse => Thank You
        • Soul Mate – emotional and spiritually – requires time 20 minutes minimum
        • Team Mate – support and encouragement
        • Mating Mate – 1 significant physical touch every day
        • Life Mate – affirmed and confirmed

Accomplishing these tasks

Not dutifully

With affection and love

=> last two sermons

C.  This Week and Next – The Emotion of Marriage

II.  Love – The Bonding Agent of Marriage

A.  Love defined

Love is the sovereign preference of one person for another – Oswald Chambers

Love is a naturally spontaneous rather than a reactive emotion

God loved us while we were still sinners

God loved us before we loved Him

Love must be cultivated and nourished by discipline

B.  1 Corinthians 13

Setting for this chapter

The Corinthians did not love each other, they loved themselves

=> fighting amongst themselves

C.  Vs 1-3 – Without love I am nothing

Love is the purpose for all you

Completion of 5 tasks or anything else in relationship

Not to prove or to boast,

but to express heart’s affection

D. Vs 4-7 – Paul lists specific characteristics, but not an exhaustive list

These were the characteristics lacking in 1st Church of Corinth

    1. Is patient and kind; 
    2. Does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude;
    3. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 
    4. Does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth;
    5. Bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things;

This is Tough Love

Does not easily break

Bends under winds and in stress

Willing to do hard things

Does not enable destructive behavior

To these I add these from marriage counseling experience

Gracious – all sin and fall short

Faithful – Keep your 1st Love

Rev 2:4 – Ephesus

E.  Vs 8-10 – Never Ends

Every other activity and/or blessing of marriage is seasonal

From just you, to you and kids, to just you

F.  Vs 11-12 – Grows and matures

Best love is not puppy love – the sweetest

Best love is not early years – hopeful and ambitious

Best love is matured love – proven through difficulty, yields best fruit

G.  Vs 13 – The greatest attribute of relationship

If it ends … The relationship dies

=> back to earlier affirmation

To cultivate and nourish

through the discipline of completing

the 5 Tasks of Marriage everyday

Make more daily deposits into your love bank, than withdrawals

III.  Closing Summary

Love is not

a warm fuzzy feeling or emotion

sweaty palms and body heat

Love is a covenant commitment to a relationship

which takes time, energy, focus, work

Seeding, weeding, and feeding

which requires

Cultivation if there is to be a harvest

Read Full Post »

Easter Sermon Notes

Remember What He Said

Scripture: Luke 24:1-8 and 1 Corinthians 15:1-2, 54-58

To listen to this sermon, click here on April 9 and click on link for sermons


I. Don’t you remember what I said ….

A.  Words we have all heard

B.  Luke 24:5-6 – The 2 men/angels to the women at the tomb

Why do you look for the living among the dead?

He is not here!   He has risen!

Remember how He told you …

C.  The women had already forgotten

When reminded by the angel

=> 24:8 Then they remembered His words

D.  Regarding His death and rising

Matt 16:21, Mark 8:31, 9:31, 10:34, and Luke 9:22

Jesus began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again.

E. Regarding His Resurrection

Matthew 22:31-32

I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. I am not God of the dead, but of the living.

John 11:24

I am the resurrection and the life.

II. Paul writing to the Corinthian Church

A.  1 Corinthians 15

Reminds us of the reason for the season

What are we celebrating today

Everyday within the church

The resurrection of Jesus

B.  He reminds them to believe in 15:1

The good news that I proclaimed to you, 

which you in turn received, 

in which also you stand, 

And by which you are saved,

C.  ==> theological discourse on the resurrection …

3 sections in 1 Corinthians 15

1. 1-11 – The Truthfulness of the Gospel

2.  12-24 – The Resurrection of the Dead

3.  35-58 – The Resurrection of the Body

D.  Crescendo of chapter 15 is reached in verses 54-57

When he speaks of the victory of the cross

Listen to Paul’s summary about

what the resurrection of Jesus means for us:

Death has been swallowed up in victory.

Where, O death, is your victory?  

Where, O death, is your sting?

The sting of death is sin, 

and the power of sin is the law. 

But thanks be to God, 

who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

E.  The resurrection of Jesus represents the two victories of the cross

Over two powers/realities which deeply affect our daily lives

1.  Over the power of sin to cause our spiritual death

2.  Over the power of physical death to end our life

III. The Resurrection gives us victory over Sin

A.  Sin has incredible power over us

In Romans Paul tells us about the realities of sin

Romans 3:23 – All sin and fall short of the glory of God

Romans 6:23 – The wages of sin is death

B.  While we like to argue about what sin does to us,

We all know deep within our souls

What sin does to us, to our relationships, to our lives

And to our relationship with God

C.  Sin destroys life,

it weighs down life,

it takes life away,

it kills life

D.  While we may bravo in our sin when committing it

We regret our sin when is shatters our life

E.  Examples of sin destroying life

1.  Zacchaeus – the tax collector

Cheated and greedy, loathed by the people

Found forgiveness and restoration in Jesus

2.  Former Illinois Governor – Rod Blagojevich

Now serving 14 years for corruption as governor

Affect on his 2 daughters

I will guarantee you sin is weighing him down

3.  The Woman caught in adultery

Leaders wanted to stone her to death

Have you ever been in room

When spouse reveals/confesses adultery to spouse and family

Looks could kill – pain, anger, grief

Weeping of regret for sin … Weighs down heavy

4.  Even unintended sins ==> deep regret

Elderly priest – Good Friday – ran over 5 parishioners,

killed one, imagine the weight on him

9 year old playing with gun kills his twin –

Imagine the weight on his shoulders

and father who left gun loaded and available

F.  Anyone who says sin is

without consequence without victims is deceived

G.  Every sinner prays for a do-over

All of us in this room have done something we regret

It hurts … It pains … It weighs us down

H.  The wages of sin is death

But because Jesus died for us

Took on the death of our sins

And because he rose from the dead

The death of our sins has been removed

==> why Paul proclaims

Death has been swallowed up in victory.

Where, O death, is your victory?  

Where, O death, is your sting?….

But thanks be to God, 

who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

I.  At Easter … because of Jesus’ death resurrection

We celebrate the forgiveness of our sins

The removal of the wages of sin from us

J.  This news, this fact, causes many in the church

to move from lamenting

to singing and rejoicing


1. African-american spirituals:

2. The American spiritual

3.  Those whose lives have been broken by sin

shame us in our ho-humness of Easter Hallelujahs

Friday at Rockford Rescue Mission

Weeping, wailing, dancing, shouting

Genuine joy … lives saved by God’s grace

K.  If it weren’t for Easter … The resurrection

We couldn’t sing these songs

IV.  Resurrection gives us victory over death at the end of this life

A.  As believers and by God’s grace

We share in Jesus’ resurrection

John 11:25-26

Jesus said to Martha, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die.

B.  I have spent much of my ministry with people as they deal with death

C.  Death not only ==> grief and sadness

it also ==> anxiety, worry, fear in all of us

What comes after death?

Is death the end?

Is this all there is to life?

D.  Jewish faith places emphasis on remembering

Because no belief in an after-life

Jesus teaching about resurrection, an after life

was something people had never heard

People do not simply live on in the memories of others

there is life after our physical, earthly death

E.  Easter – Jesus’ resurrection

Is more than Jesus telling us

It is Jesus proving for us that

There is more to life on earth

than death at the end of the day

F.  Paul said in Philippians 1:21

For me to die is gain, for me to live is lost

G.  Jesus’ resurrection becomes

The resurrection of our bodies after death

The gift of life eternal

The communion of the saints

H.  Life in and of itself is hard

For most people in most cultures

Negro spirituals sung while toiling in the fields as slaves

Joyously sing of resurrection and better heavenly world

Three most moving ones are:

The Gospel train’s comin’ 

Swing low, sweet chariot

Soon and very soon.

V.  These two victories of the cross

A.  The forgiveness of sins

The resurrection of the body

Are not victories everyone will celebrate

B.  Do not be fooled by sentimentality that says

the forgiveness of sins

the resurrection of the body

is for anyone

We love to say …

Pastor, you know 

the friendly neighbor, the nice lady down the street

their spouse, the caring coach, my good muslim neighbor

they’ll be heaven!  

Won’t they?

C.  We may wish it, but scripture teaches differently

Scripture teaches – Only for those who believe in JC

will share in the victories won by Jesus in His resurrection

D.  These victories are for those who believe

In Jesus as God’s Son, as Lord and Savior.

As the two angels at the tomb said to the two women:

Remember how he told you, while he was still in Galilee:

This is what Jesus said:

Mark 16:16

Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned

John 3:16-18

For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.  For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.

Jesus to Martha in John 11:25-26

Reveals the importance of belief

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die. 

Do you believe this?” 

John wrote his gospel so we might believe and be saved

John 1:6-7  => belief

There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness, to bear witness about the light, that all might believe through him.

John 20:30-31

Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

VI.  The Easter Invitation

A.  Easter is a celebration

For believers and followers

B.  Not only is Easter a time for celebration

But it is a time for commitment

for recommitment

C.  Perhaps

You have taken the Lord for granted

Jesus died for me but I am going to do what I want

You have fallen away

Placed distance between you and Jesus

You know you have not been a faithful follower

D.  Now, today is the time

To commit yourself to the Lord

To accept Him as Savior and Lord

To recommit yourself to follow him

If you have not professed your faith in Jesus

as God’s Son, as your Lord and Savior …

If you have not repented and confessed your sins

asking for God’s forgiveness through Jesus …

Do so now, today

so that Jesus’ resurrection, His victories

Over the power of sin to cause your spiritual death

Over the power of physical death to end your life

will be yours

Do so now,

so that Jesus’ resurrection and forgiveness

will be your resurrection and forgiveness

Paul put it this way:

This is the good news that I proclaimed to you, 

which you in turn received, 

in which also you stand, 

And by which you are saved

That Christ died for our sins 

That Jesus was buried

That he was raised on the third day 

Just as He said,

in accordance with the Scriptures.

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: