Marriage is not only the relationship between husband and wife, it is first and foremost a covenant made before God! He cares deeply for the sanctity and beauty of marriage and carefully designed it to illustrate the intimate relationship between God and his people. When we are unfaithful in marriage, we are firstly unfaithful to God! The Word teaches us that faithfulness to God will be blessed. Today in Malachi he asks - Why then are we faithless?
Today we begin a new series in the book of Malachi. God's people have returned from exile to Judah. Their expectation is for prosperity, peace and God's glorious presence. Instead, they are disillusioned to find that all they had hoped for is unrealized. Soon their spiritual zeal is diminished and their worship becomes empty, even hypocritical. The Isaraelites question God's love for them and accuse him of abandoning his chosen people. They allow their circumstances to become an indicator of God's love. Malachi reminds us that God's love is eternal, cannot be measured by human standards or circumstances, and is never to be underestimated! God is calling his loved ones to restoration and repentance. He promises, 'Return to me, and I will return to you'.
In this our last message in our Holy Spirit series, we will understand 3 things about the Spirit. He is inexhaustible, He is all-powerful and He is unstoppable. What great truths to end our series on. We pray that this series has increased your knowledge of the work of the Spirit, and as a result devloped an even greater love for our God. How awesome it is to say "Who are you, O mountain" to whatever is standing between you and God.
Continuing our examination into what it means to know the Holy Spirit, today we turn to John 3:1-8. We learn, through the story of Jesus’ encounter with Nicodemus, that only by the Holy Spirit we are granted new spiritual life. We are all born sinners in need of a Saviour, and it is only by the saving grace of the Holy Spirit that we are granted freedom from our bondage. Jesus teaches us that the regenerating action of the Holy Spirit is as sovereign as the wind… and deeply mysterious.
After his incredible defeat of the monstrous Goliath, David is thrust into nation-wide fame and success, but as Proverbs 27:21 says, “the crucible is for silver and the furnace is for gold, and a man is tested by his praise.” How will David, a man after God’s own heart, handle his newfound celebrity status?
The greatest lesson we can learn from examining the life of David—shepherd, warrior, king, psalmist—is that, despite his sins, he was truly a man after God’s own heart (Acts 13:22). In the first of this new series, we’re introduced to David as someone the Lord has set apart for his faithfulness, for his character, for his courage, but especially, for his heart. Get ready to learn from David’s life!
Throughout Scripture, our Lord makes it abundantly clear the importance of His followers bearing fruit for His glory... and yet He is patient. In today's lesson, we learn more about God's great patience through our examination of the parables unique to Luke. The metaphor in Luke 13:6-9 is crystal clear: the fruit Jesus longs for in our lives includes repentance and a complete embracing of our Saviour by faith and faith alone. ʺBut the day of the Lord will come like a thief and the heavens will pass away with a roar...ʺ (2 Peter 3:10) Are you ready?
Today, we come to the concluding verses of this amazing letter. Here, Paul ends by giving thanks to the Lord for his provision and for the church's support. He highlights to the church, the importance of embracing an attitude of gratitude, contentment, generosity and giving. Paul points out that contentment is not dependant upon our circumstance but it stems from our relationship with Christ, which produces good fruit!
In today's passage, Paul addresses the Christian's thought life. In order to grow more and more in our Christ-likeness, we are called to have a renewed mind. Romans 12:2 tells us this - the renewal of our minds - is key to true transformation and the ability to discern the will of God. He calls us to think upon and consider those things that are admirable and to avoid that which is not. And then, we are to practice these things - to act - for that is where we find the God of Peace, and that is the place of true rest!
Have you ever experienced anxiety? God's word promises that in the life of every Christian there will be trials. When anxiety and stress threatens, Paul encourages us to take heart and rejoice in the Lord, and to replace anxiety with God's peace through the power of prayer. In the face of uncertainty and chaos, we are called to remember our joy in Christ can never be destroyed or revoked. He guarantees his loved ones that by prayer and supplication, his peace will truly be with us.