Sunday, December 30, 2007

The Power of the Word



Jesus has just finished the Sermon on the Mount. He and his Disciples and Apostles begin to travel from Galilee to Capernaum.

This is where we begin this morning.



1 When Jesus had finished saying all this in the hearing of the people, he entered Capernaum. 2 There a centurion's servant, whom his master valued highly, was sick and about to die. 3 The centurion heard of Jesus and sent some elders of the Jews to him, asking him to come and heal his servant. 4 When they came to Jesus, they pleaded earnestly with him, "This man deserves to have you do this, 5 because he loves our nation and has built our synagogue." 6 So Jesus went with them.

He was not far from the house when the centurion sent friends to say to him: "Lord, don't trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. 7 That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed. 8 For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, 'Go,' and he goes; and that one, 'Come,' and he comes. I say to my servant, 'Do this,' and he does it."

9 When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, "I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel."

10 Then the men who had been sent returned to the house and found the servant well.”


a. He was highly valued by his master.

i. Servant = Employee

ii. Centurion = Roman Officer (Gentile)

iii. The Servant was ill and about to die

b. Having heard about Jesus, the centurion sent Jewish Elders to Him.

i. Lit. WHEN he heard about Jesus.

ii. Sent Jewish Elders because he thought they would have more influence in Jesus’ coming to him because he was a Gentile.

1. How many times others seek Jesus for us.

a. When we are ill.

b. When we need healing.

c. When we need Salvation.

d. When we need guidance in our lives.

2. How many times do we send others in our place?

a. We feel unworthy of God.

b. We think God listens to others but not us.

c. We think God cares more for others than us because we are not holy enough.

c. The Jewish Elders earnestly sought Jesus’ help.

i. The Jewish Elders came on the Centurions behalf (by his command)

ii. The Jewish Elders tell Jesus the Centurion was worthy to receive this request from Jesus because he “loves our nation”, “he built us a synagogue”.

iii. But these WORKS are never the basis for answers from Jesus, whether it is for prayer, healing etc.

iv. Faith in Jesus is the basis for all we receive from the Lord.

1. Your Faith has healed you.

2. Your Faith is counted as righteousness.

3. Your Salvation is by God’s grace, but comes by your Faith.

4. Faith is greater than works.

5. But our Faith without action is DEAD Faith.

a. Centurion had Faith Jesus could do something so he SENT for Jesus.

b. Centurion had Faith Jesus could do something so he had his friends PLEAD with Jesus.

c. Centurion had Faith Jesus could do something, so he SENT A MESSAGE saying, “I know by Your Word he will be made well.”

d. The Centurion had Faith AND he had action to go with that faith.

6. The crippled man at the waters edge had Faith when the angel troubled the water, the first one there would be healed. BUT he had no action. Year after year he sat at the waterside, and never made it to the water.

7. We receive by ALIVE FAITH. Our Faith is made alive by our actions.


a. Centurion sent friends to stop Jesus from entering his house.

i. Jesus went with the Jewish Elders to the Centurions house.

ii. When He was close to the house, the Centurion sent friends out to Him.

b. The Centurion felt he was unworthy.

i. The friends repeated the Centurions words, “Lord, don't trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof.”

1. Who does?

2. None are worthy.

3. All of OUR righteousness is as dirty rags.

4. But if you have accepted the Lord as your savior, it is HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS we have. By God’s Grace, and Our Faith, we receive of the Lord.

5. God seeks the humble and resist the proud.

ii. Although the Jewish Elders said the Centurion was worthy of this, the Centurion himself sent friends to humbly tell Jesus he felt un-worthy.

iii. The Centurion wanted Jesus to know that he was a Gentile.


a. He had authority himself and understood Jesus’ authority.

i. Centurion explained his authority and understanding of authority.

ii. He related this to the authority of the spoken WORD of Jesus.

b. But he had Faith in the WORD of Jesus.

i. The Centurion states the he KNOWS he is unworthy of anything from Jesus.

ii. He states that he is a Gentile.

iii. He says the reason he sent the Jewish Elders was because he felt that he himself was unworthy to even be in the presence of Jesus.

iv. Through THIS HUMILITY, and the Centurions FAITH in Jesus, he would receive from Christ.

c. Jesus said his Faith was greater than any even in Israel.

i. Jesus tells the Disciples and Apostles, all those who were following Him, “I have not seen such a great faith, not in Israel.”

ii. Although this man was a Gentile, he sought Jesus.

iii. Seek and you will find.

iv. Although this man said he knew he was unworthy, in this, he showed humility and selflessness in wanting a healing for another.

v. This man was righteous because of his seeking the Lord, humbling himself before the Lord, and requesting in Faith something he knew the Lord was capable of.

d. The friends of the Centurion returned to find the servant healed.

i. The prayer of the righteous achieve much.


If you need healing for someone today, come forward for them.

If you need salvation for someone today, come forward and we will pray for them.

If you feel unworthy of the touch of the Lord, but want it, come forward and I will pray for you.

By God’s grace, salvation is made available for those who humble themselves and seek the Lord in Faith.

By that Faith you will be saved.

And then you will receive the promise of the Father, born new into His kingdom.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Part 22 - Wise & Foolish Men


Matthew 7:24 – 29 Wise and Foolish Man

24 "Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. 26 But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. 27 The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash."

28 When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, 29 because he taught as one who had authority, and not as their teachers of the law.

Last week – Mere Professing.

  • Is there a commitment with you to God?
  • Or do you just believe in God?

“All who believe in Christ Jesus are saved” should have been translated, “All who are committed to Christ Jesus are saved.”

Even the devils “believe” and tremble.

Where is your commitment?

Who or what have you made Lord of your life?

Jesus after speaking to us in the sermon last week, saying that mere professing did not mean relationship, tells us in the last days MANY will cry “Lord, Lord”.

And Jesus will have to reply to them, “Away with you, for I do not know you.”

We have discussed the difference between knowing “of” someone, and actually having a relationship with someone.

There are those who battle with knowing the difference in society today.

Many stalkers have formulated in their own thinking that they actually have a relationship with the ones they are stalking.

Like so, many today think they have a relationship with the one they are professing.

Jesus tells us to know the difference.

Do you merely believe in Jesus, or are you committed to Jesus Christ?

We closed last week with “Depart from me, you who do evil.”

We begin this week with Jesus saying to us, “THEREFORE”,

    1. Commitment to Christ is our Salvation

i. Jesus wants relationship NOT religion.

ii. Jesus wants to be the Lord of your life.

iii. Unless we belong to the Kingdom, we cannot lay claim to the benefits and blessings and promises, etc…

iv. But when we make the decision in our hearts to surrender our lives to Him, we become citizens of the Kingdom of God. And Jesus becomes Lord, and our perfect Father.

    1. Salvation is a FREE gift which comes by FAITH

i. Salvation is FREE, to believe costs little, but to be committed costs everything.

ii. Because of God’s Grace, our Faith in the Lord is what saves us. Not words, nor deeds. We cannot speak ourselves into heaven, nor can we buy or work our way there.

iii. Our Faith in Him alone.

    1. FAITH comes by hearing the Word of God

i. Romans 10:17 “faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God”

ii. Luke 7:50 “Jesus said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you;”

iii. Ephesians 2:8 “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—“

iv. 1 Peter 1:8-9 “Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.”

    1. We are given a measure of Faith – a seed

i. Romans 12:3 “For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the measure of faith God has given you.”

    1. Those who hear AND (lit. DO THEM)

i. Galatians 1:6-10 “I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting the one who called you by the grace of Christ and are turning to a different gospel— which is really no gospel at all. Evidently some people are throwing you into confusion and are trying to pervert the gospel of Christ. But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach a gospel other than the one we preached to you, let him be eternally condemned! As we have already said, so now I say again: If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned! Am I now trying to win the approval of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still trying to please men, I would not be a servant of Christ.”

    1. How to win friends and influence others

i. Not by being a follower of Christ

ii. There is no other foundation but Christ and His Word.

    1. He is like a wise man

i. The one who makes Jesus Christ and His Word their foundation, not by merely professing Jesus, but by hearing AND DOING.

    1. Being doers of the Word

i. James 1:21 – 27 “Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you. Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it—he will be blessed in what he does

ii. Get rid of moral filth and evil that is everywhere in the world.

iii. Humbly accept the seed of faith (the Word) planted within you.

iv. DO not just hear the Word and deceive yourselves.

1. Many cried Lord, Lord, they were deceived.

2. Do what the Word says, and you will be BLESSED in what you do!

    1. Rain came down

i. Things happen in life, storms come.

1. Sometimes it’s chastising from God.

a. The Lord Chastises His own because He loves them.

2. Sometimes it’s attacks from the enemy.

a. Jesus was attacked, so are we.

3. Sometimes it’s neither, things happen.

Matthew 5:45

He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.

    1. Streams rose

i. You want to live near the water, but the danger of flood would be even more so in a storm with heavy rain.

    1. Winds blew & beat against the House

    1. Yet, it did not fall, because its foundation was the rock

i. Things in life happen. Whether it is chastisement, attack from the devil or a naturally occurring event, things happen.

ii. If our foundation is the Lord, our Rock, then when these things come in our lives, we will stand! They will not destroy us!

    1. Christ Jesus is the rock

    1. He is a foolish man

    1. Deceiving himself

    1. James 1:21-22 21 Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you. Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.

    1. Those who merely hear the Word and don’t live it are deceiving themselves. How are they deceived? Because they think they are in a relationship with God because they hear the Word.

    1. Faith does come by hearing, but we must DO what we hear or else that faith is worthless.

    1. James 2:17 faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

    1. James 2:26 As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead.

    1. While the sun shines both houses look the same

i. But when the storm comes, you will know which was built upon the Rock.

    1. Rain came down, streams rose, winds blew & beat against the house

    1. Because it was not founded on Jesus Christ, the Rock

    1. Why a great crash?

i. Everyone is watching the Godly man

1. But most are not truly God’s men.

2. So they fall because Christ was not their foundation.

3. And because they claimed Christ for so long and fell, those who were watching want everyone to know.

4. The News reports beliefs before tragedy all the time!

a. Pastors son kills 5 in mall shooting

b. Pastor so and so stole funds

c. Church leader caused accident

d. Priest molestations

e. Etc…

ii. Everyone who is not a doer, wants the doer to fall

1. Because it gives them excuse

2. In the end, there will be no excuse though

iii. Those who do not make Jesus their foundation usually can not be distinguished by others until adversity comes, THEN, by their fruit you will recognize them.

iv. Those who are not doers will make sure everyone hears when someone claiming to be a Christ follower falls.



You can make Christ your foundation today by simply;

Accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord, confessing your sin to Him.

Repent, or turn away from that sin.

Read and listen to God’s Word, praying to Him.

Be a DOER of the Word. Don’t just hear it and think you have a relationship with the Lord.

Make your Faith ALIVE with ACTION!

Part 21 - Mere Professing


Matthew 7:21 – 23 Mere Professing

21 "Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. 22 Many will say to me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?' 23 Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!'

I. Not everyone who says to me Lord, Lord

a. Salvation takes place in the heart

Repetition of the word Lord, tells us the one speaking is astonished, or surprised.

Prayer of salvation, magic words to save?

Sin takes place in our hearts first, so does commitment.

b. Believe is not enough, you must be committed to

The devils believe and tremble. Yet they are not redeemed.

If we are committed to Jesus Christ, placing Him first in our lives, we will be saved from judgment.

Salvation lies in the commitment we make in our heart.

c. You cannot serve to masters

If you serve anyone or anything before Jesus, then Jesus is not the Lord of your life.

It does not matter if it is a false god, an idol, or even your own flesh.

If you choose anything other than the Lord in your life and in the decisions you make daily, then you are not committed to Christ.

II. Only he who does the Will of the Father in heaven.

a. God has three wills for you in your life

i. That you be saved

It is the Will of God that all are saved and come to a knowledge of the Truth, who is Jesus Christ.

He is not willing that even one should perish.

ii. That you rescue others from this world

The great commission given to us by Jesus;

Go into all the world…

Baptize them in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Teach them to obey all that I command.

iii. The way you complete His 2nd Will

Our gifts from the Holy Spirit are to accomplish God’s Will on earth. To build (add to the number of) the Body of Christ, and to Edify (strengthen that Body of Christ).

III. Many will say to me on that day, Lord, Lord…

a. MANY…not a few, not some, not a couple

Jesus told us about false prophets…but we know about them today.

Brother TV Evangelist, sow your $1000 seed and be rich…

Send in your $500 love offering and get a prayer cloth of healing…

Give a love offering of any amount and receive the mother mary pencil sharpener.

b. Few find their way on the narrow path

The rich young man had fame and fortune, and would not part with it to serve the Lord.

There are many today who refuse to give up something that is between them and the Lord.

c. The church is failing in this world

Because it is misleading the people for its own selfish gain.

IV. But Lord, we prophecy in your name…drove out demons in your name…performed miracles in your name…

a. The power & authority is in His name, not in us or our deeds

b. His power & authority has nothing to do with our standing

V. Then I will plainly tell them.

a. Depart from me, for I never knew you

b. Jesus wants a relationship with you

c. Commit your heart to Him today


Doing things in the name of God does not mean you have a relationship with Him.

Believing He exists does not mean you have a relationship with Him.

But if you confess you have sinned against Him, because we all have. We are guilty because of the Law.

Repent of that sin, and trust in the Lord, committing your heart to Him, He will change your life.

He will make you a new creature and a new creation, the old will pass away and you will become His child.