2020-05-24: Acts: Life In The Spirit — The Simplicity of God’s Grace

Sermon Audio: The Simplicity of God’s Grace
Speaker: Pastor Val Watkins
Scripture Text: Acts 15:1-24
Duration: 16:47
Size: 7.68 MB

Acts: Life In The Spirit
The Simplicity of God’s Grace
Acts 15:1-24

God’s amazing grace is amazingly simple.

I. God’s Grace Travels Light (Acts 15:1-2)
We cannot qualify God’s grace by saying, “It only works, if…”. The only conditions for receiving God’s grace are faith and sincerity.

II. God’s Grace Is a Cause for Celebration (Acts 15:3-4)
God’s grace is a cause for celebration, and we should never stop celebrating.

III. God’s Grace Alone Is the Basis of our Forgiveness (Acts 15:5-11)
Again, when we try to add anything to God’s grace, it dilutes it, or taints it–however you want to look at it.

IV. God’s Grace Produces Freedom, not Bondage (Acts 15:12-21)
This was the same kind of mission Jesus had sent His apostles on. They were to minister light and freedom to those who were in darkness and bondage.

2020-05-17: Acts: Life In The Spirit — The Making of a Disciple

Sermon Audio: The Making of a Disciple
Speaker: Pastor Val Watkins
Scripture Text: Acts 14:19-28
Duration: 22:12
Size: 10.1 MB

Acts: Life In The Spirit
The Making of a Disciple
Acts 14:19-28

God uses transformed people to transform people. Restated, it takes a disciple to make a disciple.

I. The Price of Making Disciples (Acts 14:19)
Jesus said to count the cost before committing to follow Him.

II. The Priority of Making Disciples (Acts 14:20-21b)
A true disciple of Jesus will keep following Him and doing what He has commanded until it there is no breath left to do it with.

III. The Pattern for Making Disciples (Acts 14:21c-23)
“The local church is the hope of the world.”
It is through the local church that disciples are made.

The pattern for disciple-making will include strengthening others, and encouraging them to remain true to their faith in Jesus.

IV. The Pause in Making Disciples (Acts 14:24-28)
If we fail to recognize the value of pausing and resting from our labors, it will begin to take a toll on our physical and mental health.

Some of the church fathers write that the Christian day for worship became Sunday in honor of day that the Lord rose from the grave.

God wants us to become disciples who love and obey Jesus, and then make disciples who love and obey Jesus.

2020-05-10: Acts: Life In The Spirit — Overcoming Barriers to the Good News

Sermon Audio: Overcoming Barriers to the Good News
Speaker: Pastor Val Watkins
Scripture Text: Acts 14:1-18
Duration: 23:20
Size: 10.6 MB

Acts: Life In The Spirit
Overcoming Barriers to the Good News
Acts 14:1-18

The Mother’s Day videos shared in today’s worship service live stream are at the end of this post.

With God’s help, we can learn to naturally and effectively share His love with others.

I. The Power of the Spoken Word (Acts 14:1-3)
When we share the words containing the good news about Jesus, we must be empowered by the Holy Spirit.

We can let people know that God loves them and wants to help them by the power of the spoken word and through a lifestyle of living out that word.

II. The Power of Presence (Acts 14:2-3a)
Never underestimate the power of presence.
Just being there for somebody often does more for them than all the words you can say.

Be such a friend that even if they never seem to take a step toward God, you will still be their friend!

III. The Power of Miracles (Acts 14:3-10)
However, I believe that He wants to do even more miracles while we are sharing the good news about Jesus.

IV. The Power of Humility (Acts 14:11-18)
Pride is a dangerous thing, and it has resulted in the fall of many great men.
We just need to be humble and obedient, just doing what He has asked us to do.

2020-05-03: Acts: Life In The Spirit — Ministry That Makes a Difference

Sermon Audio: Ministry That Makes a Difference
Speaker: Pastor Val Watkins
Scripture Text: Acts 13:42-52
Duration: 26:09
Size: 11.9 MB

Acts: Life In The Spirit
Ministry That Makes a Difference
Acts 13:42-52

God wants your life to make a lasting difference in the people around you.

I. Life-Changing Ministry Leaves the Door Open (Acts 13:42)
If we try to force someone to receive God’s love and forgiveness, we are probably closing the door on future opportunities to share the love of Jesus with them.

1) Pray for them.
2) Build a genuine friendship.
3) Let it happen naturally.
4) Always be sensitive.

II. Life-Changing Ministry Strengthens Others (Acts 13:43)
Discipleship. It involves teaching them how to stay connected to God.

Let’s make it part of our lifestyle to strengthen and encourage others to grow in their faith.

III. Life-Changing Ministry Can Impact an Entire Community (Acts 13:44)
Are we using our gifts to make a difference in our church and community?

IV. Life-Changing Ministry Boldly Faces its Opposition (Acts 13:45-46,50-51)
We just need to know what God has called us to do and then ask Him to empower us to do it effectively.

V. Life-Changing Ministry Flows from the Mission of God (Acts 13:47-49)
God’s mission is designed to reach all around this earth and cover it with His love and forgiveness.

VI. Life-Changing Ministry Produces Joy and Spirit-filled Believers (Acts 13:52)
The Bible tells us that joy is some of the evidence that the Holy Spirit is leading our lives.

Being filled with the Holy Spirit results in greater power, boldness, and a greater sensitivity to the Holy Spirit as He speaks to us and through us.

2020-04-26: Acts: Life In The Spirit — God’s Extraordinary Promise

Sermon Audio: God’s Extraordinary Promise
Speaker: Pastor Val Watkins
Scripture Text: Acts 13:13-41
Duration: 21:28
Size: 9.83 MB

Acts: Life In The Spirit
God’s Extraordinary Promise
Acts 13:13-41

Let’s look at several clues that will deepen our understanding of God’s greatest promise.

I. God’s Promise Is Seen in Israel’s History (Acts 13:17-25)
All of God’s activity as seen here was aimed at bringing the Messiah to Israel and the world, just as He had promised.
Genesis 3:15
Genesis 26:4
Deuteronomy 18:15
Acts 3:24-26

II. God’s Promise Is for All Who Believe (Acts 13:26)
Paul was able to stand up in this Jewish synagogue, surrounded by Jews and devout Gentiles, and say that the message of God’s promise had been sent to them.

III. God’s Promise Is Often Overlooked (Acts 13:27-29)
People often see only what they are looking for. Those in Israel who were looking for the promised Messiah found Him when they found Jesus.

IV. God’s Promise Is Meant to Be Shared (Acts 13:30-32a)
Paul mentions that those who followed Jesus during His earthly ministry saw Him after His resurrection and became His witnesses to the Jewish people.
Acts 1:3:
I Corinthians 15:4-8

V. God’s Promise Is Fulfilled in the Person of Jesus (Acts 13:32b-39)
It’s all about Jesus! Paul shows these Jews and God-fearing Gentiles that Jesus fulfills the criteria for being the Messiah.

VI. God’s Promise Is Unbelievable to Those Who Reject Him (Acts 13:40-41)
God chose to send His Son Jesus to take our place, so we would not have to face eternal separation from Him in everlasting torment.