Posts Tagged 'value'

Apocalypse Talks: The Mean Time

Apocalypse Talks: The Mean Time

Matthew 24:45-51

How do we value ONE YEAR? Ask a student who failed a grade. How do we value ONE MONTH? Ask a Mother whose baby arrived prematurely. How do we value ONE WEEK? Editor’s of weekly newspapers know. How do we value ONE HOUR? Ask someone who lies terminally ill waiting for a loved one who is late. How do we value ONE MINUTE? Ask someone who missed a plane, a train, a very important engagement that would never be rescheduled. How do we value ONE SECOND? Ask and Olympic Medalist, someone who just missed having an accident, or someone saying good by to a loved one they will never see again.

How are we using the Mean Time?

* We’re Choosing To Serve ~ Matthew 24:45-47

  • 45 WHO is to be faithful and wise? Is this just about ministers? Or does this include everyone?
  • 46 frankly, as Congregationalists, we might read into this a bit: we are, each of us, directly servants of our Master: Christ is the head of the church (Eph. 1:22; 5:27; Col. 1:18; 2:10); we ALL serve, so this applies to all of us – Jesus wants us to be faithful and wise
  • 47 less a reward and more a responsibility; the Master will give us more to be faithful and wise with – our reward isn’t what we get charge of, but our increased responsibility is also more intimate relationship. Our reward is Christ Himself!

* Or Losing Our Nerve ~ Matthew 24:48-51

  • 48 “wicked”=WORTHLESS; is a servant who doesn’t serve a servant? Instead of caring, he’s clock-watching
  • 49 watch out for those wielding authority as a weapon instead of the tool to take care of the Master’s estate;
  • 50 here’s the concern: in the back of the mind, the servant KNOWS the Master will return “someday”
  • 51 (cf Jer. 34:18) those who break covenant are subject to being broken themselves!

We, as God’s servants, enter into a covenant with Him. We give our very LIVES to God… and this is a serious commitment! The Lord expects us to honor our covenant with Him; that we are grafted into His Life so that we would bear fruit. How shall we use our Mean Time?

2 Corinthians: Big T, small t

2 Corinthians: Big T, small t

2Corinthians 13:4-9

I’ve suspected for some time that my hearing was not perfect. My family certainly did as well – but it wasn’t until I’d actually had it tested that I was forced to recognize that I needed help. How can we test our own lives for what they actually contain?

To Confirm The Content Of Our Lives

We DO the small t: test ~ 2Corinthians 13:4-7

  • 4 we can’t live the Christian life in our own power; we live it BY GOD’s POWER
  • 5 “examine”=find what went wrong; “test”=find the good; no Christ > no good in you
  • 6 KJV/reprobates= NOT good-tested; no good in them
  • 7 be more concerned with what’s right than LOOKING like we’re concerned

We TRUST the Big T: Truth ~ 2Corinthians 13:8-9

  • 8 lit, no power against the truth; TRUTH exists; we can’t alter it
  • 9 perfection=completion(NASB), restoration(ESV), maturity(HCS) – the goal is that we would be completed in TRUTH

Ecclesiastes 8:17 reminds us that “No one can comprehend what goes on under the sun. Despite all his efforts to search it out, man cannot discover its meaning. Even if a wise man claims he knows, he cannot really comprehend it.”

Let’s not waste our time trying to find the bad, or even trying to ‘be good’. Instead, let us live IN Truth – Christ IN us, the hope of glory, our only way to live as originally intended in fellowship with God.

Snapshots from Mark: The Cost of Copper

Snapshots from Mark: The Cost of Copper Sermon Audio Here

Mark 12:38-44

The article “Keeping Score Matters, But Not How You Think” mentions the first ever sports psychology experiment: does a cyclist go faster when riding against their previous best time? Or against someone else?

Does God Keep Score With Our Offerings?

Warnings About Values ~ Mark 12:38-40

  • 38 Warning signs about religious people in power:
    • 1) fancy dress (to look special)
    • 2) salutations (to be recognized)
  • 39
    • 3) first seats in synagogues (to be counted as extra-holy)
    • 4) first seats at dinner (to be considered worthy of honor)
  • 40
    • 5) misappropriation of gifts (subverting offerings into their own pockets)
    • 6) surface words for show (to pretend closeness to God that isn’t there)

Various Worth of Gifts ~ Mark 12:41-44

  • 41/42 setup: as Jesus watches, rich people give abundantly, while a poor woman gives a tiny amount
  • 43 it’s worth noticing to Jesus: He calls the disciples attention; how does God measure our gifts? It goes beyond mere copper/silver/gold
  • 44 this offering is a gift of TRUST; she is trusting God to provide, even as she provides what she can for God’s work. (God can do more with our money than we can)

The gifts of the rich, though large, were easy gifts: the widow’s gift, though tiny, meant a real surrender of herself to God and trust in him, and therefore an honouring of God as God, as the one to whom we belong wholly and is able to care for us.”1


1. (Cambridge Greek Testament Commentary; St. Mark, by C.E.B. Cranfield, p. 387)

Posts from 1 Peter: Faith is Precious

Posts from 1 Peter: Faith is Precious Sermon Audio Here

1 Peter 1:17-23

We’ve been looking at different aspects of our new life in Christ. We’re risen WITH Christ; we live with hope; we’ve been GIVEN faith.

Appreciate Your Precious Faith By

Reminding Yourself of the Truth ~ 1 Peter 1:17-19

  • v17 KJV “pass the time of your sojourning” REMEMBER: we are on a JOURNEY; what do you differently when you’re traveling versus when you’re at home?
  • v18 “you were redeemed” REMEMBER: YOU are BOUGHT and PAID FOR; how often do you remind yourself that you have VALUE?
  • v19 notice the sacrificial language from Leviticus; REMEMBER: Christ is the only acceptable offering; Are you trying to sacrifice yourself?

Remaining in Him with Faith ~ 1 Peter 1:20-21

  • v20 Christ’s sacrifice was God’s plan ALL ALONG; our sin doesn’t catch God off guard
  • v21 Our faith is both a gift from and BASED IN God; our faith isn’t something we “work up”; when we are faithless, it’s because we’re not using what we already have

Regarding Each Other’s Worth ~ 1 Peter 1:22-23

  • v22 “purified yourselves by obeying” – in the same way that the Old Testament saints participated in the sacrificial system; THEY didn’t purify themselves, God did through the actions of the priestly system (and only temporary). We don’t make ourselves better; Jesus has done the work, and we just admit we need it
  • v23 “through the living word” NOT only and primarily the Bible; this is the LOGOS, John 1:1. JESUS is the Living Word! JESUS will remain forever! And because we are connected to Christ because of our gifted faith, we ALSO are Living and Abiding forever with God.

Psalm 116:16 O LORD, truly I am your servant; I am your servant, the son of your maidservant; you have freed me from my chains.

He gave us faith to set us free: USE IT !

Learning from Luke: The Value of Forgiveness

Learning from Luke: The Value of Forgiveness Sermon Audio Here
Click here to play the file

Luke 7:41-50

Kristin Lewis, about 8 years old, mentioned that her mother’s birthday was soon approaching. When asked if she was going to make a birthday card on her father’s computer, she said, “No. If you make one on the computer they don’t keep it on the refrigerator as long as when you make one yourself.”

To Understand the Value of Forgiveness, Remember

Forgiveness Tied to Cost
Luke 7:41-46

  • v41 large debt needs large forgiveness
  • v42 Bible describes SIN as DEBT (Mat. 6:12, Romans 6:23)
  • v43 “I suppose”=old Greek denotes irony; Simon thought he knew the answer, but he missed it altogether!
  • v44 Jesus makes the meaning plain: this woman carried more “debt” than you
  • v45 and she responds to her forgiveness with love
  • v46 How did Simon respond to Jesus? How do YOU respond to Jesus?

Forgiveness Saves the Lost
Luke 7:47-50

  • v47 Notice: love come AFTER forgiveness; God (the forgiver) loves FIRST; we, the forgiven, love LAST
  • v48 “are forgiven” Gk. Intensive perfect, focus on resultant state; Jesus reminds her AND US that we need to focus on our forgiveness; jump to v50
  • v50 it is HER faith because it was GIVEN to her by the act of forgiveness; response to this salvation is PEACE
  • v49 When people see Jesus at work, they’re drawn to ask this question

Who is this Man who forgives sins… who is He to You?


Pastor Ed Backell

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