Gardendale Nazarene

to live completely for Christ...

Archives for 2014 | Messages | Gardendale Nazarene


He is Our Help (Hebrews 2:14-18)

Most of us lack the ability to truly communicate with one another. Then, we get to church and our pastor talks to us about prayer and we think, "I can barely talk to my neighbor, much less the Creator of the universe." Hebrews opens with an incredible declaration- because Christ has come, the communications lines to our God are open!

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Until We Met Jesus (Matthew 1:1-17)

It is the fourth Sunday of Advent. We turn to one of the more confusing openings of a gospel. Why would Matthew give so much time to the genealogy of Jesus?

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The Word Became Flesh (John 1:1-14, 18)

The Epilogue to John's Gospel is one of the greatest pieces of scripture. John tries to capture the cosmic nature of the Divine coming to earth.

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Why Jesus Came (Mark 10:45)

Mark's gospel lays out three predictions of Jesus' death in three separate chapters (8, 9, & 10). Each one of these predictions is followed with an apostle's idea of who he thinks Jesus should be. Jesus holds fast in obedience to His Father's plan, not those closest to Him.

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God, The Father (Deuteronomy 10:12)

This Advent, we will be looking at who Jesus is. In order to lay a proper foundation, we begin with who God is.

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When the Rain Falls (Matthew 7:24-27)

What is your foundation? Are you going to be ready when the storm comes? Blessed are those who have been through the storm and mourn.

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Bearing Fruit (Matthew 7:15-20)

Jesus wraps up the Sermon on the Mount with three warnings. Today, we look at the first of the three warnings.

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Listen to Yourself (Matthew 7:12)

We are taught the Golden Rule from childhood, yet do we really allow it to guide our life? Do we allow the simple words to take on a deeper meaning in our lives?

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From Enemies to Neighbors (Matthew 5:43-48)

Today, we wrapped up Matthew 5. This chapter begins the Sermon on the Mount and gives us a peek at the Kingdom. Jesus is calling us to live lives transformed from the inside out. We are the salt of the earth. We are the light of the world.

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Kingdom Honesty (Matthew 5:33-37)

Relationships are important. Our God is a God of relationship and He desires for us to not just be freed from outward sin, but for our hearts to be healed.

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Redefining the Tough Issues (Matthew 5:21-32)

The Sermon on the Mount brings out issues that are many times tough to work through. On the cross, Christ takes on the burden and cleanses us from our sins. However, it is in the words of Christ that are hearts are healed.

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Here is the quote I used in the sermon: “I sadly have a number of broken or strained relationships about which I have tried to do what Jesus tells us to do. I sadly have a number of relationships about which I have not yet tried hard enough to do what Jesus tells us to do because I am afraid of an explosion of anger in the other
or in me. But I do not want to miss out on the reason why Jesus speaks the way He does in this text. I do not what to let any of the 'What if...' issues get in the way of my soul being healed."

The Shape of My Life (Matthew 5:17-20)

Christ did not come to abolish the law, but to fulfill the Law. This passage is a turning point in the Sermon on the Mount. What does it mean to have a right-relationship with our Lord?

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"Go!" (Matthew 8:5-13)

This morning we are challenged by our youth pastor, Rev. James Dolinger.

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Discipleship Means Mission (Matthew 5:13-16)

We are the salt of the earth and the light of the world.

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Welcoming Others (Romans 12:9-13)

A life of generosity includes opening our lives to other people. This openness leads to the opportunity to share truth in the lives of those God has given us.

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Experiencing God's Goodness (Luke 6:38)

God has a vision for your life. What is keeping you from being all that God desires for you? Are you willing to trust Him enough to give Him what stands between you and Him?

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The Burden of Sin (Rev. James Dolinger)

Today, we are joined by our Youth Pastor, James Dolinger.

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The Generosity Factor (Galatians 6:2-10)

Galatians 6 is the final chapter in Galatians. As Paul wraps up the letter, he is pointing us to no longer bear the burden of the Law of Moses but to bear one another's burdens. In doing so, we fulfill the Law of Christ.

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Count on Me! (Genesis 32:26-29)

Our mission statement is "To Live Completely for Christ." Living this way demands that we depend on Christ to be our strength.

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Gaining Sight (Mark 8:14-26)

Today we wrap up our series in Mark's gospel. Join us as we look at this great little story in the second gospel.

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The Still Storm (Mark 4:35-41)

The question Jesus asks the apostles is a tough one. "When are you going to have to faith?" This is a hard question for us. Faith is trust and belief. Do we trust God in the midst of the storm?

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There are times in life, when you need to turn to your neighbor and say, “You are a beloved child of God. Do not be afraid.” Think of how much a parent loves their child- that pales in comparison to the amount that God loves you.

Automatic Fruit Bearing (Mark 4:26-29)

This is a short little parable that tells us a great deal of information about our life with our God. In who's life has God asked you to invest yourself (to plant). Do you trust God to give the growth?

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The Spirit and the Cross (Matthew 3:13-17)

Matthew's recording of the baptism of Jesus differs from Mark's story. Matthew seems to draw attention to the Pharisees and Sadducees. The Pharisees are trying to bring about the coming of the Messiah by their purity, while the Messiah is standing before them.

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The Opening of Heaven (Mark 1:9-11)

Mark's account of Jesus' baptism stands apart from the other Gospel. Mark brings out the beauty of the story in his retelling of that day.

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Jesus Christ and the Mission of the Church (Luke 19:28-44)

What path are you on? Are you being influenced by this world or are you on the path of God? What is blocking your path? What is keeping you from being who God created you to be?

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Strategic Prayer and Servanthood (Phil. 2:3-11)

Praying for boldness and for a movement of God's Spirit within the community and in the lives of those who are lost is part of an effective outreach strategy.

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In this sermon and the next, I reference the book
Comeback Churches by Ed Stetzer. If you are interested in reading this book, you can find it here.

There were three common faith factors they found in Comeback Churches. These factors are:
1) Renewed belief in Jesus Christ and the Mission of the Church
2) Renewed attitude for servanthood
3) More strategic prayer effort

These factors are exciting in two ways. First, I don’t think anyone in the church is overly surprised by these factors. If we are surprised, it is because of what the factors are not. The factors are not exciting worship, engaging messages, seeker-sensitive services, etc. They are what the church needs to be doing. Secondly, Gardendale Nazarene has been on a journey over the recent years. This journey has asked, “What are our core values as a church?” Guess what? Our values (discipleship, kindness, and prayer) line up perfectly with these faith factors! God is working in an amazing way!

God is Holy (Matthew 8:1-4)

In the Hebrew culture, holiness equalled being set apart. Jesus understood holiness as something that changes the heart and sets one apart to do His Father's business. His Father's holiness touched the people who needed to truly experience his holiness.

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Why Worship? (John 4:19-26)

This morning we wrapped up our series on worship. The woman at the well is one of the great stories in John's gospel. Today, we look at Jesus' offer of living water.

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Here are some review points from the previous weeks of this series:
• Worship names us and claims us.
• The only one who has the right to name/define you is the one who made you.
• When we take something temporal and try to turn it into something eternal, we create an idol.
• Jesus knew that to worship something other than His Father was to alter His identity.
• Our foundation is Christ and Him crucified.

God's New Work (Matthew 9:9-17)

God is in the midst of doing new things all around us. Are we willing to let God work? Are willing to remove our grasp and allow God to guide?

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Here is the quote that I used from David Busic in this sermon:
“The greatest test of our faith is whether I can trust God with what is most dear to me. Will I even offer my Isaac completely into the hands of God? God wants to bring us to a point in our relationship with him where we can lay our Isaac on the altar and say, ‘Here I am, Lord. Right here, right now. Willing to do whatever you ask me to do. Even to laying my dearest love and greatest joy before you. And not just giving it to you because I’m afraid I’ll lose it if I don’t. But willingly laying my Isaac down, because I want everything that is precious to me in your hands and under your control!’”

If you would like to read this book, you can find it here-
Perfectly Imperfect.

God's Fellow Workers (1 Corinthians 3:9-17)

We are continuing through 1 Corinthians 3. Paul lays out for us what a church should look like- one built on the foundation of Jesus Christ.

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In this sermon, I used a few graphics to illustrate Paul’s argument for what the church should look like in 1 Corinthians 3. Below, you will see the final graphic that summarizes all my points.

1 Corinthians 3 Slides.001

Worship is Planting (1 Corinthians 3:4-17)

We are servants, just like Paul and Apollos. In worship we plant and water, but it is God who gives the growth.

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Alabama North TNT- Draper Rogers

This morning was Alabama North TNT for 2014. We had a great morning and were joined by Draper Rogers from Gardendale, AL.

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What You Worship is What You Become (Matthew 4:1-11)

Jesus knew that to worship Satan was to alter his identity, loyalties, and life direction. Satan desired to plant doubt and insecurity in the heart of Jesus, and he desires to do the same to us.

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Worship is the Gateway to Restoration (Isaiah 5:1-7)

Restoration is connected to the act of worship. It results from what happens when people encounter God in worship.

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Worship is God’s Call Upon Our Lives (Genesis 32:22-32)

Worship claims us and names us. In Romans 8, we are claimed as heirs with Christ. That is our true identity.

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