Jesus is the Gospel

Rev. Stacey Cox

Jesus is the Gospel

If you were asked, 'What is the gospel? What's the good news?' how would you respond? Paul began his letter to the church at Rome with the bold statement that he was "not ashamed of the gospel"! Paul closes his letter by reminding us of the gospel - what it is, and what it does. Sunday we conclude our series in Romans with "Jesus is the Gospel"! Hope you'll join us.

Gospel Credits

Rev. Stacey Cox

Gospel Credits

At the end of every film you will find credits, a list of those who contributed in one way or another in the making of a movie. Actors and actresses are listed, as well as everything from the director to the producer, from costumes to cameras, lighting to location. Clearly it takes quite the crew to create a film. This is equally true where the drama of redemption is underway. Paul illustrates this in his closing remarks to the church at Rome. So many stories and contributions are captured in Paul's parade of names. And the apostle loved each one! Join us Sunday for "Gospel Credits"!

A Missionary Heart

Rev. Stacey Cox

A Missionary Heart

It's common knowledge that how we perceive ourselves and the world around us greatly determines how we live our lives. A biblical understanding of who we are, where we came from, why we are here, and where we are headed is crucial in living a life of God-honoring purpose. We see all of this at work in Paul's concluding remarks to his friends in Rome. Hope you'll join us Sunday for "A Missionary Heart."

The Hero of the Reformation

Rev. Stacey Cox

The Hero of the Reformation

October 31, 2017 marks the five-hundredth anniversary of the beginning of the Protestant Reformation. With a strike of his hammer on the Wittenberg Castle Church door, a backwater monk set in motion, albeit inadvertently, a movement that set the world ablaze with the gospel. Luther's public act of defiance of papal authority swiftly gained traction, flipping centuries of church tradition and abuse on its head. The gospel was turned loose and everything changed. But according to Luther, he really did nothing. The Reformation's hero was another. Hope you'll join us Sunday for "The Hero of the Reformation"!

Building the Body

Rev. Stacey Cox

Building the Body

With the recent earthquakes in Mexico and South America, we have been reminded of a basic fact of physics: nature doesn't tolerate shortcuts. Sketchy blueprints and cheap building materials can be dearly expensive. Poorly-crafted structures in seismic hot-spots tend to tumble down. Construction materials and methods matter, not only when pouring foundations and erecting walls, but also in the life of the church. Let's talk about it Sunday, as we continue our study in Romans with "Building the Body."

Walk In Love

Rev. Lane Stephenson

Walk in Love

It's likely that you have some strong ideas and convictions over what Christians may do or not do in terms of every day conduct. Perhaps you have arrived at those convictions through much thought and prayer. Or, it may be that those convictions are unconsciously formed by your background and life experiences rather than by Scripture. Regardless of how you have arrived at those convictions, they are rules of conduct for you and they are important.

We come from different backgrounds, have different life experiences, and sometimes have differing views over what is permissible conduct for Christians. What are we to do when we differ over matters of conduct that are not clearly delineated in Scripture? In Romans 14:13-23, Paul gives counsel for believers who faced such challenges. His words call us to seek the well-being of the church by walking in love for one another.

Stop Trying to Fix People

Rev. Stacey Cox

Stop Trying to Fix People

There are a few things that can weary me: Harassing mosquitoes, cable news, unrelenting presbytery meetings, and the mistaken notion that I can fix anyone. (I could list more, but whining also wears me out, and I don't want to be a whiner). Fixing people is way above my pay grade. And it's above yours too. That's God's business. He alone changes people. Sunday we take a look at it. Hope you'll join us!

Wake Up, Christian!

Rev. Stacey Cox

Wake Up, Christian!

We are regularly bombarded with news of natural disasters. A Cat 5 hurricane approaches and fear grips the heart, but how much do we tremble at the thought of God's impending wrath upon sinners? Wild fires ripping through the TN mountains startle the senses. Yet, we read as Peter describes a coming day when God will consume this world with fire and we yawn. It's easy to drift into a spiritual slumber. Paul speaks to this sluggish state in our passage Sunday. Hope you will join us for "Wake Up, Christian!"

The Christian and the State

Rev. Stacey Cox

The Christian and The State

A rule of etiquette -- in business, at the dinner table, at the barbershop and elsewhere - is "never talk about religion or politics." These subjects are but one reason holiday meals with family can be so - well - 'interesting.' Sunday we are tossing this adage out the window and addressing both simultaneously and for good reason: Scripture isn't silent on their intersection. In view of God's mercies to us, what should be the Christian's attitude towards governing authorities? Join us Sunday for "The Christian and The State"!

What Love Looks Like

Rev. Stacey Cox

What Love Looks Like

We use the word LOVE so loosely now we're in danger of losing its meaning. What is love? The great 20th-century icon Forrest Gump famously said, "I may not be a smart man, but I know what love is." What is it? What's the difference between "loving" your favorite (insert college team here) and loving your relative who hurt you deeply? Or loving a Christian brother versus loving someone who is hostile towards your faith? That's where we are headed Sunday. Make plans to join us for "What Love Looks Like"!  

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Gospel Shipmates

Rev. Stacey Cox

Gospel Shipmates

 

The ship was an ancient Christian symbol. It was a picture of the church cutting through the sea of disbelief and darkness, the troubled waters of this world, but finally reaching Heaven's safe harbor with the souls of God's redeemed. Question: Which type of ship did early Christians envision the church to be? Did they have a 1st century 'Love Boat' cruise liner in mind or was it a ship of war, a battleship? Mission and mindset make all the difference for the voyage ahead. This was so in the 1st century and holds true today. Make plans to join us Sunday as we explore this important matter!  

What's In Your Obituary?

Rev. Lane Stephenson

What's In Your Obituary?

What's in your obituary? Or perhaps I should say, "What is not in your obituary?" For things important to the world are often insignificant in God's sight. Through Paul's admonition of Romans 8:3-8 regarding spiritual gifts, we learn that the first mark of presenting ourselves to God as a living sacrifice (vs 1-2) is that of committing ourselves to one another in the body of Christ. Our life together calls for a proper view of ourselves so that we may faithfully utilize our God-given gifts for the well-being of the one body. In these words, we find direction for a well-lived life that brings honor to God.

Walkology: Putting Feet to Our Faith

Rev. Stacey Cox

Walkology: Putting Feet to our Faith

During a game, a coach will typically draw his players in at halftime. Whether ahead or behind, a good coach wants to rally his team - motivate them to finish strong. Developing players is a never-ending task. This is the essence of what we find Paul doing in the second half of his epistle to the Romans, where he transitions in Romans 12 from deep theology to practical "walkology." We are to live out what we believe. That's where we are headed Sunday. Hope you'll join us!

God and Israel: Grace Prevails!

Rev. Stacey Cox

God and Israel: Grace Prevails!

No one can deny that the Jews are a unique people. What other people can trace their lineage to Abraham and the human ancestry of Jesus to their stock? Jesus was Jewish. Yet, given their response to the Messiah when he came, has God given up on ethnic Israel? Is anyone beyond the grace of God? Those are the questions Paul addresses in Romans 11. Join us Sunday for "God and Israel: Grace Prevails!"

Beautiful Feet

Rev. Stacey Cox

Beautiful Feet

'Feet selfies' find their way to social media from time to time. Often they involve sand sun, and water. Although pedicured and golden, uneven toes - even on a sunny beach - are usually in need of a good pair of shoes. But, Scripture does describe feet that heaven declares are always "beautiful". They aren't the ones that make it to social media, but those that deliver the message of the gospel! Join us Sunday for "Beautiful Feet"!

God's Sovereign Choice - Part 2

Rev. Stacey Cox

God's Sovereign Choice - Part 2

Everyday instances of grace and mercy are common: one needy school receives a generous gift from a wealthy donor, ten others don't; one speeding motorist is issued a citation, another is given a warning; the restaurant manager surprises a customer with a free dessert and not every customer. Yet, we are ready to quarrel with sovereign grace, if it doesn't align to our personal sense of fairness. Paul anticipates such reactions and objections to the sovereignty of God in election and answers each in his Romans 9 instruction. Sunday we return to this incredibly relevant doctrine. Join us for "God's Sovereign Choice - Part 2!"

God's Sovereign Choice

Rev. Stacey Cox

God's Sovereign Choice

Here's a thought to consider: God has never been surprised - not one time. He's sovereign over all of His creation. Zero in on the middle portion of the term. See the word within the word? Sove-reign-ty. God reigns over everything that happens: Dolphins giving birth, waves crashing onto shores. And, yes, salvation. We tend to have a natural hostility towards the sovereignty of grace, but removing it from scripture requires busy scissors and results in a hole-y Bible. So join us Sunday for "God's Sovereign Choice"!  

Christ-Like Love: Persuasive and Victorious

Rev. Kurt Frank

Christ-Like Love: Persuasive and Victorious

When ancient Rome, its culture, politics, family life, and sport were sinking to the lowest moral denominator, the Apostle Paul had the audacity to proclaim everywhere this truth: "I am persuaded that the love of Jesus Christ, God's son, turns persecuted Christians into Christ-like victors over evil opposition." With America's moral decline can today's Christian minority become persuasive and victorious? Yes! Come and learn how from retired Pastor, Dr. Kurt Frank, our guest preacher.

Comfort Gospel

Rev. Lane Stephenson

Gospel Comfort

Believers live in a continual tension while in this world. On the one hand, we have great ignorance and weakness. "We do not know what to pray for as we ought," Paul writes in Romans 8:26. On the other hand, we have assurance that we may possess with an unshakable confidence. Only two verses after verse 26, Paul begins a great affirmation with the words "We know." We who know Christ have gospel comfort that rests upon God's unchanging and certain purpose. Join us this Sunday for "Gospel Comfort".

Groaning for Glory

Rev. Stacey Cox

Groaning for Glory

J. Vernon McGee once made the following observation: "Nature sings in minor key. The wind blowing through the pine trees on a mountainside and the breaking of the surf on some lonely shore - both emit the same sob. The music of trees has been recorded, and it is doleful. The startled cry of some frightened animal or bird pierces the night air and chills the blood. Surely nature bears audible testimony to the accuracy of Scripture." Creation longs. Paul described it as 'groaning.' It's not only around us, it's within us. What's going on here? Hope you will join us for "Groaning for Glory" Sunday!