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Expository sermons with the aim of glorifying God, through Christ Jesus, by the power of the Holy Spirit.


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Pastor Jay’s Missionary Report from Cambodia

From the HeartCry Missionary Society blog: HeartCry Missionary Society wants to thank Pastor Jason Jesuroga for traveling and teaching the HeartCry Missionaries in Cambodia. Jason’s report is below, sharing the highlights of the trip and the blessing of the fellowship he expereinced with the Khmer pastors. I just enjoyed the distinct privilege and pleasure of going to Cambodia through HeartCry Missionary Society to train local native pastors there for the work of the ministry. I am a Reformed Baptist pastor from a small church in Fort Worth, Texas, called Sovereign Joy Community Church. My time there was nothing short of amazing for several reasons. First, I found myself personally challenged with forsaking the comforts of the United States for a third world country where there is much poverty and hardship. I was reminded of what the Lord Jesus did in leaving the status and privileges of heavenly glory and coming in likeness of a servant to save a people for His own glory (Phil 2:5–11). For me, this ministry required much dependence on God to get me through each and every day. It was difficult and taxing physically, mentally, and spiritually, but I found every teaching session very gratifying and thoroughly loved it. Second, this time was amazing because the Cambodian Christians hunger to know the Bible. Their many questions kept me from going through all of the teaching material I brought, but the interaction was worthwhile. I taught for four hours each day. They would not let me stop before my time was up. God was doing a great work. Many times in the USA, people complain that the sermons...

Your 7 Job Responsibilities as a Church Member

This excerpt is adapted from Jonathan Leeman’s new book Understanding the Congregation’s Authority. Copyright 2016 by B&H Publishing Group. When you hear the words “church government,” what do you think? Members’ meetings? Elder board rooms? Fights over the budget or the color of the carpet? Too often it can seem that way. Yet church government should involve so much more than that. In fact, it should tie into the everyday life of the church. And everyone has a role to play. Did you know, ordinary church member, that Jesus has given you a job? Your elders have a special office, to be sure, but so do you. And Jesus has given you elders in order to train you to do your job. So if Jesus’s discipleship program gives every single member a job, what responsibilities come with this job? There are at least seven. 1. Attend Church Regularly  You, as a baptized Christian and ordinary member of a church, are responsible to attend church regularly. Scripture could not be clearer about this fundamental responsibility so that you can give yourself to love and good works and encouragement. And let us be concerned about one another in order to promote love and good works, not staying away from our worship meetings, as some habitually do, but encouraging each other, and all the more as you see the day drawing near. (Heb. 10:24–25) The author threatens final judgment if you do not attend (vv. 26–27). The stakes are high indeed. After all, if you do not attend, you cannot fulfill the next six responsibilities. Attendance makes everything else possible. 2. Help Preserve the Gospel You, as a baptized Christian and ordinary member of a church, are responsible for protecting...

6 Thoughts on Sacred Space & 7 Thoughts on Sacred Time

Given the last several sermons from Pastor Jay, particularly “Exile from the Garden Temple” and “The Birth and Worship of Cain and Abel”, we thought these two articles by Pastor Nicholas T. Batzig below would be a good supplement to what we’ve been going through in Genesis: 6 Thoughts on Sacred Space: When God created Adam, he set apart sacred space in which he would enter into fellowship with his newly created image bearer. Just as He had created time and space (Gen. 1:1-2), setting apart a portion of that time to be sacred unto Him, so the Lord set apart a portion of sacred space in which man would worship Him. While the story arc of Scripture is that of man’s fall from fellowship with God and of his great rebellion against the God who had created him for fellowship with Himself, the climax is the restoration of man to fellowship with Himself in the New Heavens and the New Earth–the renewed Garden paradise from which Adam was exiled. Consider the six following thoughts on the importance of sacred space in the Scriptures:   1. The Garden was the place of God’s special blessing…   2. The Garden was a reflection of Heaven…   3. The Garden was to be Extended…   4. The Garden was to be Populated…   5. The Garden was to be Cultivated…   6. The Garden was to be Protected…   While God originally set apart the Garden of Eden for man to live with Him in unbroken fellowship and communion, His plan was that everything should be Garden. That is the picture we get...

The Garden of Eden a Temple and Adam a Priest?

The question in the title of this post is something that Pastor Jay talked about last Sunday during his sermon on Genesis 3:22-24. For more details on this let me encourage y’all to read an excerpt from Pastor Richard Barcellos; book Better than the Beginning: Creation in Biblical Perspective. Here is one section from it: Since this may be a new concept for some readers, it is important to consider this a bit further. Was the garden the earth’s first temple? Was the garden a special dwelling place of God among men on the earth? The text of Genesis 2 and 3 does not use those words to describe the garden of Eden. But as we have already seen, it does utilize language used elsewhere in Scripture that describes God’s presence in Israel’s tabernacle. Does the Bible look back upon the garden of Eden and indicate that it was, in fact, a temple, a sanctuary, the first special dwelling place of God on earth among men? I think it does. Consider Ezekiel 28:11-19, especially verses 13-14, 16, and 18… Read “The Garden of Eden a Temple and Adam a Priest?”. [More snippets from the book] – Furthermore, I had the opportunity to interview the author about this book. You may listen to the first part of that interview here [part 2 here] or below (we get into Adam and the temple around the 27 minute mark):...

Nakedness = Shame [R.C. Sproul]

In conjunction with Sunday’s sermon on Genesis 3:20-21, specifically Pastor Jay’s second point where we see God’s grace abounding over judgement when He makes Adam and Eve animal skins for a covering of their shame, I thought that this short excerpt from the St. Andrew’s Expositional Commentary on Mark, by R.C. Sproul would be edifying for y’all: Many years ago, I wrote a book that was first titled The Psychology of Atheism, then later retitled If There Is a God, Why Are There Atheists? In it, I included a chapter on the nakedness motif that we find in sacred Scripture and in Western philosophy. I did a word study of gumnos, which is the Greek for “naked.” In the garden of Eden, the man and the woman were naked but without shame until sin came into their lives. The very first psychological self-awareness of guilt and shame was an uncomfortable awareness of nudity. Since then, human beings have been the only creatures who have adorned and covered themselves with artificial garments, because it is built into our fallen humanity to equate shame and humiliation with nakedness.   Throughout the pages of Scripture, when God speaks of bringing judgment against the guilty, He does it by exposing their sin and stripping them of their clothes. A prime example of this comes from the book of the prophet Amos. Amos gives the Lord’s list of transgressions by Moab, Judah, Israel, and so on, then gives God’s response: “Behold, I am weighed down by you, as a cart full of sheaves is weighed down.” This is God’s rebuke of His people. He then says: “Therefore flight shall perish...

Every Christian’s 2nd Most Important Book… Your Local Church’s Membership Directory

Our church membership directory is now accessible online (of course, only accessible by specified member’s email addresses). Since we now have this resource, I thought this article may give us some encouraging ways on how to make use of it: For Christians, the Bible is the most precious and important book we possess. In its pages are the divinely inspired words that guide us to know and love our God.   After the Bible, there are a few books that every believer should probably read, reread, and apply. On this short list would be works like Foxe’s Book of Martyrs, Pilgrim’s Progress,Augustine’s Confessions, Mere Christianity, Knowing God, and Operation World. But even these great works fall behind what I consider the second most important book for every Christian.   What book is that? Your local church’s membership directory.   Now, before you roll your eyes and run off to read something else, give me a moment more of your time.   Christians are not isolated spiritual pilgrims on a journey to heaven. Rather, the Bible says we are all members of His body (1 Corinthians 12:27), children in His family (1 John 3:1-2), and sheep of His flock (John 16:10). These descriptions reflect the reality that God intends Christians to be part of a tight knit community.   One day that community will all be together in heaven with Jesus (Revelation 5:9-14, 7:9-17), but for now we gather together in local churches. These churches are assemblies of believers who regularly come together to worship Jesus through song, prayer, preaching of the Word, and sharing in the ordinances (baptism and Lord’s Supper).   But we don’t...
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