The Journey of the Christian life is different for every person. Our growth doesn't happen the same way or in the same timing. However, the starting place for the Christian life is the same for every believer. It begins with a choice. This message will focus on explaining the choice that must be made by every person when it comes to their relationship with God.
Not only can God use people who are broken but that is exactly the way He calls us to come to Him – with a broken spirit and a contrite heart. So we get to bring Him all the little pieces of our lives, not because of anything that we have done, but because...God broke Jesus, so He could fix us. "But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed…Yet it was the Lord’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer… and the will of the Lord will prosper in his hand"
Parenting is the most important job we could ever be given, and yet for most parents when it comes to having a plan, we aren't sure what that plan looks like. In this talk we look to define what the Bible tells us our goal in parenting should be and talk through some practical steps to pursue that goal.
We live in a culture where cohabitation, adultery, pornography, and one-night stands are all "normal". But, from the pain and frustration we can see around us, "normal" clearly isn't working. Christians have a view of sexuality that is just plain weird, but it promises a path to intimacy, unity and satisfaction. In this talk, we'll unpack what the Bible has to say about the way to achieve lasting intimacy and fulfillment with (or without) sex.
In part 5, we asked "Must I Choose Between Faith and Science?" The answer was "no." We don't need to choose between faith and science, but we must choose between Philosophical Naturalism and Christianity. Today we ask questions surrounding evolution? Can you believe in evolution and believe the Bible? Can we consider Genesis 1-2 to be figurative? What are the options? How should we think about Theistic Evolution?
Is there a conflict between faith and science? Must I choose? If there is a conflict, do I ignore clear evidence from science that contradicts the Bible because I'm a Christian? How do I navigate this difficulty? This message will help focus on what the real issues are in debates between faith and science.
Many children die. What happens to them when they die? Most people assume they go to heaven? Do we have theological or textual evidence to support that assumption or is it based on sentimentality? This talk will attempt to answer that question and deal with the Bible's teaching on what happens to babies when they die.
Many Christians speak of "finding God's will" or "being in the center of God's will." Does God have a will that must be discovered? Am I to find out who God wants me to marry? When I should change jobs? What kind of car to drive? This sermon will look at the traditional will of God and a suggested alternative to pursuing this illusive will of God which can lead to great freedom and joy.
Today's talk is about identifying three potential "monsters" in your past and learning what to do about them. Any or all of these "monsters" often become a person's identity and continue to haunt their life. Does this describe you or someone you love? Join us as we look more closely at what God tells us to do to make the monsters in our closets friends for life so we can experience true freedom and forgiveness.
Did you grow up believing there were monsters in your closet? How crazy. Monsters are fake! What about now? Got a few monsters in your closet - Those real people or situations from your past that keep coming up that you wish would stay hidden in the closet, but won't. This week we will look at a situation in the Bible where everyone involved had some pretty significant "monsters" in their past…until God showed up! His grace changed everything.
A famous statement Jesus made in the garden near Gethsemane was "Let this cup pass from me." What did that mean? Understanding that statement can be one of the most helpful things in understanding the significance of the death of Jesus. This bonus talk from this series will deal with this single statement by Jesus and its implications for us.
The Bible simply says, "They crucified him" (Luke 23:33) without much description. The New Testament authors didn't need to describe it because everyone in the first century was very familiar with a crucifixion. In the 21st century, we know very little about crucifixion. This message will help us understand what Jesus went through on the cross - for us.
We know Jesus was crucified. However, the Jews weren't able to crucify anyone. They needed the Romans to do that. So they needed a charge that Rome would see as justification to crucify Jesus. That required a Jewish trial followed by a Roman trial. In this message - we will look at the trials and the likely locations of those trials in part 4 of the series Killing Jesus: The True Story.
At times we are under the wrong impression that the Jews could kill Jesus however and whenever they wanted to. That isn't true. It needed to be done through the Romans. But how could they get the Romans to want to kill Jesus? During part 3 of this series, we will consider the conspiracy and arrest of Jesus. And we will consider that it wasn't just the Jews who were in on the conspiracy.
Today we begin a five-week series about Killing Jesus: the True Story. People are typically familiar with the Triumphal Entry (Palm Sunday) and familiar with his death and resurrection. But the events that happened in between those two are mostly cloudy in people's minds. This first sermon will give an overview of what happened in the last week of the life of Jesus as we consider the implications of what He did, why they wanted to kill him, and how they accomplished it.
This series has given a lot of practical tools for reconciling relationships. But what if you have exhausted everything and nothing is working? Is there help available? What role is the church supposed to play in helping to reconcile relationships? This message will also talk about church discipline. What is it? What does it look like? Why would we discipline church members?
The Bible is clear that we should be quick to overlook the offenses of others. Yet sometimes, we shouldn't overlook when someone does something wrong to us. So how can we confront someone without it getting ugly? This message will look at how we can avoid a fight yet do what's right by confronting someone about their wrong behavior.
All of us live in relationships, and therefore, we all have conflict. That conflict may be minor or major, but we all have tension and conflict in relationships. The Bible clearly teaches the source of every conflict we have in our lives. And if we can understand the source of every conflict, it can allow us to better handle those conflicts.
Our greatest joys happen in or because of relationships. We are made to be in relationships. But with those relationships also bring some of life's deepest pains. If you are in relationships - you have had conflict. If you aren't in conflict with a co-worker, family member or friend now - you will be soon. That is part of living life in a fallen world. This is part one of a series helping us to understand conflict, why we do what we do, and how to respond differently.
We are all madly and passionately in love with someone, and that someone is ourselves. Yet our selfish obsession is often the cause of the hurt, frustration and pain in our lives. In this message, we will discover what Jesus has to say about a different sort of love that heals hurts, overcomes pain and can change the course of our lives: In essence, it is Love at its Best.
In the final verses of 1 Peter, Peter sticks with the themes he's had in the entire book - suffering well and the hope of heaven. And he does it by pointing out God's amazing grace. God's promises of His grace have amazing results in our lives. But sometimes we are so focused on our suffering, we forget what is coming.
Peter tells us our enemy is real, we need to be alert for him, and we need to resist him. But the devil often is ignored - so do we even know what to look for? This message will show two errors Christians have when it comes to Satan, and show his two primary strategies he uses - so we can be alert and resist his advances.
It is the beginning of a new year. To start off 2014, we wanted to update the church on where we've been and where we are going. A majority of our church is new in the last five years. So we want to review a bit of our history, talking about finishing Creating Spaces well, and urging people to start well in 2014 - living lives of complete biblical stewardship.
If God's Word is eternal and without error then how are we to make sense of the differences that exist in our modern Bible versions? Do differences in our modern Bibles call into question the reliability of Scripture? Discover 5 reasons why there are differences among Bible translations and why they should not trouble us.
How would you respond to someone who said that the goal of their life is to love their life and see good days? My guess is you might pity them, correct them or pray for them. But Peter sets that up as an appropriate goal for life. We should love life and see good days. How can that be and what does that look like? In our passage we will study today, Peter gives us careful instructions on how to love the lives God has given to us and how to experience great days while we are here on earth.
Every husband needs to change and every wife wants her husband to change. Yet there is something inside of a wife and something inside of a husband that results in the very way a wife tries to get her husband to change makes him most resistant to change. The passage of Scripture we will study today talks about how to get your husband to change without nagging or manipulation.
The word "submit" is as close to a swear word if viewed as a cultural swear word and has caused many to label Christianity as sexist. Why does the Bible insist so strongly on submission? What does it really mean? And perhaps as importantly, what doesn't it mean? This talk will address those issues for marriage.
Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it. We all know great parents who love God and taught their children to do the same, but whose children are not on "the way they should go." So is God not keeping His promise? Or are we misreading and misapplying that verse?
Jesus tells us to "Judge not, or we too will be judged", but is that what He really meant? Is it even possible when we are experts in seeing the failures of others and novices at identifying our own faults? Seeing this verse in context will reveal that it's time to put down the plank so we can see the sawdust.
Have you ever wondered why we talk about the Gospel so much? Have you ever wondered why your Christians friends are so different? Have you ever wondered why someone changes their lifestyle so much after "finding Jesus?" Have you ever wondered why we sing songs about the blood and the cross - as if it is a good thing? Have you ever wondered why we call Friday before Easter - Good Friday when it is the day of the death of Jesus? These two verses remind us again of the basics and beauty of the Gospel.
The theme of 1 Peter is finding hope when you suffer. The passage we will study in this sermon is about how to suffer like Jesus suffered. He was our example. That provides us with a template to trace in how we handle those who mistreat us. But to suffer like Jesus will require supernatural help because it is not natural.
Peter continues to talk about relational suffering that can happen because we are Christ-followers. In this brief section he talks about how to handle a boss, a manager, or colleagues who make you suffer because you are a Christ-follower. Peter tells us exactly what we ought to do to handle those moments. But unlike slaves, we have two options. Peter gave one - submit. We, as employees have two options; we can submit or quit.
Living as a spiritual minority in America presents challenges. Especially if we don't believe that God calls us to create a Theocracy. This past year and the coming years will likely be marked in American history where "civil rights" changed for homosexuals. How are we supposed to handle issues of homosexual marriage and rights? What is the biblical view of a culture that is changing on issues of biblical morality?
When you consider how Christians in the first century suffered and how some around the world suffer, it is hard to claim that we suffer at all in American as followers of Jesus. yet we are told that those who will live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted. What does that look like in our culture? And what should our response be?
We live as a Spiritual Minority in our culture. Most Americans would call themselves Christians, but aren't necessary truly devoted to following God. So how are we to submit to authorities over us who don't submit themselves to God? This passage we will study helps us answer that question - as Peter gets specific for the first time on the issue of submission while suffering.
What is your identity? What words would you use to describe who you are? You would use your name, where you live, and perhaps where you are from. But how would you describe your identity? Knowing who you are has the power to change the reality of your life. Two verses in 1 Peter describe who we are in Christ and the descriptions are life-altering.
To every person, Jesus is either their cornerstone (the foundation of their life) in whom they trust, or he is their spiritual stumbling block over whom they trip spiritually. One way leads to life and the other to death. This message looks at the importance of those word pictures and attempts to apply them to our daily reality of life.
The resurrection of Jesus is the Greatest Story Ever. It means everything to us as followers of Christ. In fact, it is more significant that the birth of Jesus. It is the most important Holiday (Holy Day) for a Christian. Often we talk about the implications and importance of the resurrection, but in this message, David simply walks through the beauty of the story. It really is the greatest story ever.
Peter claims that the Bible has the power for salvation and transformation in our lives. So it is important to consider what might keep us from having the Bible play it's proper role in our lives. Jesus once told a parable that indicated some of the things that stop the Bible from influencing our lives. For two weeks, we will look at two of these thorns that stop the growth of God's Word in our lives.
Ever experience a storm so severe you thought you were going to die? Maybe you thought following Jesus would lead to a storm-free life? Maybe you knew storms would come, but you never expected them to bring you to a point of doubt. This message will teach us how to follow Jesus in faith through the storms of life!
At the moment when Elijah's greatest resolve faded, he was able to move on, to pick up the pieces, to get back to work, back to living, back to reality – only when he had come face to face with God’s grace – the unconditional favor that pours out so freely from the one who loved us so completely. So it is for us - rather than just adding one more thing to an already long to do list - let's call a redo, a restart, a reboot and by His grace stop listing and start living.
There is an emptiness in our hearts that drives each of us to pursue satisfaction and contentment in something or someone. But its a spiritual emptiness that cannot be satisfied by material things. In Ecclesiastes 5 Solomon warns us against 3 lies we can often times believe that rob us of true contentment in our lives and then offers us 2 truths we must consider instead.
20 Children killed in Connecticut. Perhaps this time of year, that is the biggest similarity to the story in Bethlehem. Jesus is born and every child (except him) dies in Bethlehem. Is that fair? Why does suffering immediately come on the heels of Jesus' birth? The second half of Matthew 2 is the part of the Christmas story not well known and rarely told. How does the hope of Christmas fit with our suffering?
There are parts of the Christmas story with which people are very familiar: the shepherds, the wisemen, the angels making announcements, and Mary "pondering these things in her heart." The second half of Matthew 1 tells the story from the perspective of Joseph. This message considers the Christmas story from Joseph's perspective and through the eyes of Joseph, we will consider Who Jesus is and why He came.
We all want to be generous and we all are pretty convinced if we had more, we'd be more generous. Our heart goes out to needs (disasters, crises, special projects). This final sermon in this series, we will consider what an upgrade in giving may look like. It isn't simply "give more" - it's about "give smarter" and "give better."
Paul writes that there is NO greater thing than KNOWING Jesus Christ. So what does it mean to know Christ? What keeps us from knowing Christ? How can we know Christ? Philippians 3:8 "What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ."
Our universe is incredible. It is a giant cosmic billboard. Just how big is it? Just how amazing is it? This talk focuses on what our universe tells us about our God and how it applies to each of our everyday lives. Psalm 19:1-2 "The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they reveal knowledge."
This is the second week of our summer series "God's Words with Friends." Mark Nelson talks about overcoming the fear of what other people think and fully trusting God. We stop living with insecurity when we start living in security. Proverbs 29:25 "Fear of man will prove to be a snare, but whoever trusts in the Lord is kept safe."
This is the first week of our summer series "God's Words with Friends." The idea of the series will be for our pastors, elders, and some staff to share the verses that have made the most significant impact on their lives. David will share the first week on the verse that changed his life and set the directional course for Northridge Church. Acts 20:24 "However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me —the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace."
Every religious system has a viewpoint of how we interact with God's grace, how we get it and how we keep it. Every religious system also has a viewpoint of the future and how we can have the best future possible. This sermon will look at how Biblical Christianity is opposed to every other religious system on the issues of grace and eternal life.