Sun, Sep 22, 2019
Duration: 45 mins 39 secs
Let's Know the Bible Conference speaker, Dr. Cythia Westfall, talks about Paul's surprising encounters with Lydia on his second missionary journey. The Spirit of God sends the famed apostle on a 950 mile journey to Macedonia, and his first conversion happens at a riverside with the God-fearing, immigrant, self-employed Lydia. This message notes ten observations about Lydia that are surprising. Most importantly, we tend to overlook people who live on the margins of society. Both are Bible reading and Christian living will benefit when we begin to notice the unseen people God puts in our lives.
Sun, Sep 08, 2019
Duration: 47 mins 12 secs
Followers of Jesus have been entrusted with a life changing message. The Gospel, the Good news, tells a public truth about the world. That is, Jesus, is the king who has defeated sin and death and brought, fulfilling God's promises by bringing salvation to all people. Paul expected Timothy to share this good news. Jesus expects us to, as well. Sharing the Good News does not require eloquence, but it does demand urgency.
Sun, Sep 01, 2019
Duration: 48 mins 36 secs
We live in a self-centered world. It is a sure sign of our age. The apostle Paul warned Timothy a day would come (and was near) when the misbehavior in Ephesus would be widespread. Welcome to our world. Sadly, false teachers and egomaniacs exploit others with their antics. Paul offers another way, a way of faithfulness in life, love, and suffering. He knows Timothy's faith has followed a common growth path. He encourages him, and us, to continue the path of learning faithfulness. And when we learn it, we live IT.
Sun, Aug 18, 2019
Duration: 44 mins 46 secs
The proof of genuine Christian faith is the life-long pursuit of Jesus. This pursuit comprises character transformation and spiritual community. And it recognizes the trap of divorcing faith from practice. Bible trivia and fighting for fundamentalism does not prove anything. The quiet, steady, gentle, loving, truth-seeking pursuit of Jesus speaks volumes.
Sun, Aug 11, 2019
Duration: 45 mins 13 secs
We do not stand alone. As followers of Jesus, we band together, suffer together, and grow together. There is no other way. Jesus shapes us through godly mentors, faithful leaders, and loving believers. Timothy experienced this with Paul, who tasked his "beloved son" with raising up the next generation of leaders in the church. This investment in the lives of others is the greatest impact we can have.
Sun, Aug 04, 2019
Duration: 46 mins 10 secs
God had a wonderful, vulnerable plan for keeping his kingdom plan marching forward: he tasked men and women to live it and pass it along to the next generation. Like the game of tag, there are not "take backs." The newly appointed IT person has to find someone else to pass it along. Paul tagged Timothy. Timothy would tag others. And on and on. Fortunately, succession plans are not purely up to us. God provides an IT factor to empower us.
Sun, Mar 17, 2019
Duration: 45 mins 55 secs
God designed spiritual community to be a place of care. We meet one another's needs. We tend one another's wounds. We bear one another's burdens. These acts of care give evidence of our close companionship with God's Spirit. He did not intend for us to live alone. Such a community of care requires humility, honesty, and effort.
Sun, Mar 03, 2019
Duration: 40 mins 15 secs
God raises his children as a Free-range Father. He is not anti-rule, but provides enough moral guidance to let "good things run wild" (Chesterton). Sadly, we allow external codes and internal drives define what is right. We enslave ourselves to laws or lusts. God frees us so we can love. Living with a relentless sense of duty or crippling sense if guilt is not God's desire. No: Our Free-range Father calls us to range free.
Sun, Jan 06, 2019
Duration: 42 mins 59 secs
We are new creations. We are Christ's ambassadors. We are God's co-workers. These words from Paul frame the 2019 theme: We Participants. Being a participant does not guarantee a life devoid of trials. In fact, joining God's mission often spells personal suffering. But we participate because it is God's way of winning the world to Jesus.
Sun, Jul 08, 2018
Duration: 42 mins 44 secs
The apostle Paul knew something of God's compassion. It shaped his past, empowered his present ministry, and reached all people. When he describes God's compassion (i.e., mercy, kindness) to Paul, he assumes Timothy, too, will take it and pay it forward. And so should we.