A Kingdom-Focused Family

Sunday Sermon

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The example of Aquila and Priscilla:

  • Acts 18:1-2

    • Expelled from Rome in 49 AD. … Suetonius, a historian, confirms that Christians were kicked out of Rome in 49 AD. The order was issued Claudius, the Roman Emperor.

    • Met Paul in Greece in 51 AD. … Interestingly, they had the same occupation as Paul. They were tent makers and would have been good with leather.

  • Acts 18:18-19, 24-25

    • Traveled with Paul to Corinth in 52 AD. … After working with Paul and becoming good friends, they decide to go on a mission trip with him. … When they heard someone preaching about Jesus without the full picture, they invited him into their home and helped him learn more about Jesus. … When Paul went to Ephesus, they followed him there, but they remained there when Paul moved on.

  • 1 Corinthians 16:19

    • A church meets in their house.

  • Romans 16:3-5

    • Return to Rome in 57 AD. … We know they returned to rome because Paul addresses them in his letter to the Romans. Apparently they even risked their lives for Paul and they still have a church meeting in their house.

  • 2 Timothy 4:19

    • They are back in Ephesus in 68 AD. … Paul finally made it to Rome, but Aquila and Priscilla are in Ephesus again, as evidenced by him greeting them in his letter to Timothy

A kingdom-focused family:

  1. Works as a team. … Be on each others’ teams. Work together. Sometimes one must submit to the other, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still work together.

  2. Finds a mission bigger than their jobs. … Aquila and Priscilla weren’t full-time church workers and probably carried on as tent makers throughout the time we looked at, but they risked their lives for a mission that was bigger than their jobs.

  3. Uses their home to glorify God. … Aquila and Priscilla invited others into their home so could teach them about Jesus.

  4. Connects to a local church wherever they move. … Aquila and Priscilla always connected to a church, whether it was in their home or somewhere else, they were part of a church.

Aquila and Priscilla thought Claudius, the Roman Emperor who expelled Christians from Rome, had simply kicked them out of their home. But God used Claudius to cause them to meet Paul. They somehow saved Paul’s life and he kept preaching. Their encounter with Paul led them to many other places and to good work for Christ.

We Are Sent

Sunday Sermon


Acts 25-28

Today we are going to look at how God sends the Apostle Paul to fulfill his dream of getting the Gospel to Rome, nearly 3000 miles from where the Spirit first descended upon the church in that Upper Room.

  1. Live provocatively (Acts 25:22)... Paul was arrested and left in jail for two years and seemingly forgotten. A new ruler eventually comes to power and calls before him, but Paul, who is a Roman citizen, appeals to Caesar. So, they make plans to send him to Rome to plead his case, but before he can get there, King Agrippa asks to speak with Paul so he could try to understand Paul's motivations for how he lives. 1 Peter 3:15 tells us our lives should prompt others to ask how and why we live the way we do.

  2. Seize opportunities (Acts 26:27-29).... As Paul speaks to Agrippa he tells Agrippa about Jesus and how the Old Testament prophets point to Him. Paul saw every situation as a platform to proclaim Christ and he knew the Spirit can work in any situation.

  3. Embrace sovereignty (Acts 27:21-26).... At the start of this sermon, Paul had been in prison for two years, and now he is on a ship in a storm. Following Christ is not easy. The storm gives him an opportunity to proclaim his faith and the sovereignty of God.

  4. Live a sent life (Acts 28:30-31).... By the end of Acts Paul is renting a house and welcoming everyone and proclaiming the Gospel to everyone. That's how the book ends.

The book of Acts only has 28 chapters and ends abruptly, But did it really end or are we in chapter 29 right now? Here's some tips on how to live like we are in Acts 29.

Be Sent in your inviting…. We tend to invite other Christians to church events. That's not a bad thing, but we really need to invite non believers even more so.

Be Sent in your volunteering…. Have you been affected by a volunteer? Pay it forward. Volunteer to go on missions or teach a class or do nursery.

Be Sent in your generosity…. Giving is important. It's how we pay for new materials for missions and classes among other things.

Be Sent in your faith…. Share your faith. Don't be afraid to follow God's direction.

God's Principles of Time Management

Sunday Sermon

A word of encouragement: There are different seasons in life (Ecclesiastes 3:1). … Many families have hectic schedules. Kids have practices for sports and band. Parents have work stuff. Both the kids and parents have friends and events they either want or need to do.

  1. Put the big rocks in your schedules first (Matthew 6:31). … Check out this video about time management to understand the rocks reference.… The biggest rock ought to be the “God rock”. It needs to go in first. The next biggest rocks should be work and family. Unfortunately what many of us do is put in small rocks first. We fear that we will miss out on something and keep throwing these small, less important rocks in the bucket. Sports, band, ballet, martial arts, parties, beaches, restaurants, screen time (phones, computers, TV), etc. are all small rocks. We tend to put them in first and then there isn’t room for the big rocks.

  2. Develop a weekly routine of worship, work, and rest (Genesis 2:1-3; Exodus 20:8-11). … This is how to put the big rocks in first. … Why did God create everything in six days and rest on the seventh? Why did God send mana to the Israelites for six days but not on the seventh? Why does one of the Ten Commandments tell us to keep the Sabbath holy? God is teaching us a pattern that we should live by, a pattern that gives us a routine of worship, work, rest. … Some professions require workers seven days a week and those are important jobs. But the people working those jobs also need this pattern of worship, work, rest.

  3. Submit your schedule to the lordship of Christ: Be open to interruptions that we are divine appointments (Acts 8:10). … If Jesus is Lord of your life, He ought to be Lord of your schedule. Acts 8, 9, and 10 all contain stories of believers who had their schedule interrupted by God to do something they likely would never had done on their own time. They may have done it reluctantly, but they did it.

Jesus exemplified all three of these principles in His life (Mark 1:32-35; Luke 4:16; Mark 5:30-32). … Jesus was busier than we are. And He still made the time for God and prayed. He had a routine that He followed. He was open to interruptions that were divine appointments.

Jesus’ Betrayal, Last Supper, Arrest, Trial, Crucifixion, Burial, and Resurrection: Jesus Is Buried and Rises from the Dead

Sunday Sermon Series Jesus’ Betrayal, Last Supper, Arrest, Trial, Crucifixion, Burial, and Resurrection Holidays Easter

Matthew 27:57-28:20

Jesus is buried by Joseph (Matthew 27:57-61). … This was not Joseph, the earthly father of Jesus. This was Joseph of Arimathea, a follower of Jesus. The other gospels tell us that he was part of the Sanhedrin and did not vote for Christ to die. The tomb Jesus would have been buried in would have been easy to close and difficult to open by design.

Why is the burial of Jesus important?

  1. It is evidence He was dead.

  2. It fulfills the prophecy that the Savior would be buried with the rich. … Isaiah 53:9 predicted this.

  3. It is the basis of the symbolism of baptism. … When we are baptized we are fully immersed in water, symbolizing death and burial, and then we come back up from the water, symbolizing the resurrection.

The tomb is sealed and guarded (Matthew 27:62-66). … There was concern that the disciples or other followers would attempt to pull off a hoax and steal the body, so the tomb was sealed and a guard was posted.

The tomb is empty and Jesus is risen (Matthew 28:1-15). … When the two Marys and a few others came to the tomb with spices, the tomb opened up and an angel appeared. The angel isn’t described as some cute little winged baby, but as a great being that imposes fear and awe on those who see him. He tells the women to come and see that Jesus is risen and then to go and tell others about what they have seen. … On their way to tell others, they met Jesus and worshipped Him. … Important note: the tomb was not opened so Jesus could leave, but so that the witnesses could come and see. Jesus didn’t need an open grave in order to leave. … Then we read that when the religious leaders heard about this they paid off the guards to say the disciples must have come in the middle of the night while they slept and took the body. Neither side, believers or non-believers, from the 1st century dispute the evidence of the empty tomb. Rather, the non-believers believe that the disciples came to the tomb in the middle of the night and opened the tomb while the guards slept and took the body, all without waking the guards.

Jesus appears to His disciples in Galilee (Matthew 28:16-20).

Jesus says:

  1. All authority has been given to Me. … Jesus has power over everything, even death.

  2. Go and make disciples, baptizing them and teaching them to obey my commands. … This is the great commission we are given, to go and make disciples of all people.

  3. I will be with you always. … No matter where we go, what we do, who we are with, Jesus is always there. His Spirit is with us.

Jesus’ Betrayal, Last Supper, Arrest. Trial, Crucifixion, Burial, and Resurrection: Jesus Is Crucified

Sunday Sermon Series Jesus’ Betrayal, Last Supper, Arrest, Trial, Crucifixion, Burial, and Resurrection Holidays Easter

Matthew 27:11-54

Early Friday morning, Jesus stands trial before Pilate (Matthew 27:11-25). … Jesus has been interrogated by the Jews all night long and they want to execute Him, but they don’t have the legal power to do it, so they take Him to the ruling Roman governor, Pilate. Pilate questions Jesus and realizes Jesus has nothing wrong and sends Him to Herod Antipas but Herod sends Him back not wanting the mistake of Jesus’ death on his hands either (Luke 23:6-12). Finally, Pilate gives the Jews a choice to set Jesus free or to set a known criminal named Barabas free. They chose to free the known criminal and yelled “crucify Him” about Jesus. (Don’t let this verse lead to anti-semitism. The Jews are God’s chosen people and Christians should have no part in hating them.)

Jesus is beaten, mocked, and crowned with thorns (Matthew 27:26-30). … Jesus is hailed as the King of the Jews, so they give him a sceptre and a crown of thorns.

Jesus s forced to carry His cross to the place of execution (Matthew 27:31-33). … Jesus struggled to carry His cross after such a beating and they made a man named Simon of Cyrene to carry it further, to Golgotha, the place of the skull.

At 9:00 AM, Jesus is crucified (Matthew 27:34-37). … While on the cross, Jesus was offered some wine with gall/myrrh which may have been an act of mercy to help dull the pain or may have been intended as another mocking gesture. Either way, Jesus refused it. Below Him the guards gambled for His clothes. Over His head a sign reads “King of the Jews”. On either side there are criminals also on crosses.

Jesus is mocked by those around Him (Matthew 27:38-44). … Those who walked by mocked and taunted Him. And not only Him, but also God’s plan, whether they knew it or not.

At noon, the sky becomes dark (Matthew 27:45; Amos 8:9-10). … This may well be the result of creation mourning the death of its Creator. Psalm 22 and Isaiah 53 are great prophecies of Jesus’ death,but a lesser known prophecy is found in Amos 8:9-10 which prophecies the darkness and that the event would occur during a religious festival.

At 3:00 PM, Jesus dies (Matthew 27:46-50). … Jesus , the Son, experiences separation from the Father, experiences being forsaken. He cries out “eli, eli, lama sabachthani” (“my God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”) and the crowd thought He was crying out for Elijah. They gave Him wine with vinegar and listened for what else He might say. Then He cried out once more and died.

When Jesus dies, two things split open:

  1. The temple curtain (Matthew 27:51) … This is the veil that separated the outer room from the inner room, the holy of holies. The tear signifies the end of the need for the sacrificial system. The perfect sacrifice has been given. Now we all have the ability to directly pray to God and have no need for priest to mediate for us.

  2. Rock and tombs (Matthew 27:52-54) … Rocks and tombs opened up. And after the resurrection some of the holy men who had died rose and walked among the people.

After Jesus died, his guards, the centurions, saw all this and proclaimed, “surely, this is the son of God.” It’s a proclamation from the lips of a gentile, one that shows us that anyone can believe, not just Jews.

Jesus’ Betrayal, Last Supper, Arrest. Trial, Crucifixion, Burial, and Resurrection: Jesus Is Arrest and Put on Trial

Sunday Sermon Series Jesus’ Betrayal, Last Supper, Arrest, Trial, Crucifixion, Burial, and Resurrection Holidays Easter

Matthew 26:31-27:5

Setting: It’s late Thursday evening and they’ve just eaten supper. They were probably on their way back to the house they were staying at in Bethany.

There are four main characters in this passage. Can you identify with any of these four?

Jesus predicts that His disciples will desert Him (Matthew 26:31-32).

Peter says he will never fall away (Matthew 26:33-35). … Peter is guilty of overestimating himself, which is a dangerous trap we can all fall into.

Jesus goes to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray, where He is betrayed by Judas (Matthew 26:38-39, 47-49, 53-54). … This garden seems to be a place where Jesus would have prayed in often. He left eight of his disciples in one area and took three of His inner circle with Him where He experienced anguish. Then He left those three and fell on His face to pray. He prayed to have the cup of God’s wrath taken away from Him, but He understood what must be done and why. Earlier that night He shared the cup of redemption, representing His blood, with His disciples. We will all drink from one of these two cups, and the one we all deserve is the one full of wrath. Fortunately for us, Jesus has taken that drink for us so that we may drink from the cup of redemption, of salvation. He prayed this three times as His disciples kept falling asleep. … Eventually Judas shows up with the priests and some soldiers to arrest Jesus. Peter cuts off an ear of one of them with his sword and Jesus rebuked Peter, saying He could have many legions of angels there to fight if that was His desire, and healed the man’s ear. This tells us Jesus died voluntarily when He easily could have saved Himself.

Jesus is arrested and taken to home of Caiaphas, the high priest (Matthew 26:57, 63-64, 67-68). … During the trial Jesus doesn’t answer their questions and there really isn’t enough evidence to convict Him of anything. Then Caiaphas gets the idea to directly ask Him if He is the Messiah. Jesus confirms the accusation and makes a bold statement that explains he calls Himself the Son of Man, referring to a prophecy from the Old Testament (Daniel 7:13).

Peter denies Jesus (Matthew 26:69-75). Judas regrets his betrayal and kills himself (Matthew 27:1-5). … Peter denies being a follower of Jesus just as Jesus predicted. Judas realized he had betrayed an innocent man and tried to return the money. They wouldn’t take it and he killed himself.

All four of these men were religious people, but we are told only two of them knew God and would go to Heaven.

Caiaphas was religious but was only out to protect his own position and status.

Judas was one of the twelve disciples and apparently blended in quite well. He came to regret what he did but to repentance.

Peter failed but he got came to repentance and got back up to become a great leader in the church.

Jesus submitted to the Father’s plan even though He did not want to.

Are you like any of these?

Jesus’ Betrayal, Last Supper, Arrest, Trial, Crucifixion, Burial, and Resurrection: Jesus Eats the Last Supper with His Disciples

Sunday Sermon Series Jesus’ Betrayal, Last Supper, Arrest, Trial, Crucifixion, Burial, and Resurrection Holidays Easter

Matthew 26:17-30

Jesus instructs Peter and John to prepare the Passover meal (Matthew 26:17-20). … The disciples asked Jesus where they should go to set up for Passover, and Jesus gave them some specific instructions, which the Gospel of Luke tells us even more about. So Peter and John went and followed the instructions and everything went as Jesus said. … It’s possible that this room they set up and ate in is the upper room in Mary’s, the mother of John Mark, the author of the Gospel of Mark, house. This is supported by a couple of passages in Acts. … So, they likely set up the meal at u-shaped table where they would recline. In John we learn that the disciples argued about who is greater, then Jesus washed their feet to illustrate a powerful point about humility and servant leadership.

While they are eating the meal, Jesus reveal that one of the twelve disciples will betray Him (Matthew 26:21-25). … When Jesus makes this revelation He also implies man free will to opt in or out of God’s plans and certainly also to refuse the devil. Jesus has washed Judas’ feet and warned him and shown him great love even though Jesus knew that Judas would betray Him.

During the meal, Jesus institutes what we call the Lord’s Supper (Matthew 26:26-28). … The bread, which was unleavened, represents His body that was broken for us. Why is it unleavened? Because it goes back to the Exodus when the Israelites left Egypt and didn’t have time to add yeast to their bread. Normally, yeast represents evil in the Bible and before the Passover each family would search through their house and throw out any yeast. Do you have any yeast, any sins, you need to throw out of your life? … Then Jesus took a cup of wine (which would have been mixed with water, 3 parts water and 1 part wine), the cup of redemption. He calls it His blood of the covenant, blood that is poured out for the forgiveness of our sins, blood that covers our sins and the shame and guilt from those forgiven sins. If you have sins that you still commit or haven’t confessed then that shame and guilt will remain and won’t be covered until you take those sins and put them away and confess them before God.

Jesus predicts a future time of fellowship in the Father’s Kingdom. They sing a hymn (Psalm 118:22-24), and go out to the Mount of Olives (Matthew 26:29-30). … Jesus didn’t finish the Passover meal. Instead, He said there is a time coming when they will all feast together again. The last words of the psalm they sang are prophetic. In Acts 4:10-12 Peter realizes this and professes it in front of the Sanhedrin. Jesus is the cornerstone that was rejected and is the only way to salvation.

Jesus’ Betrayal, Last Supper, Arrest, Trial, Crucifixion, Burial, and Resurrection: Jesus Is Honored and Betrayed

Sunday Sermon Series Jesus’ Betrayal, Last Supper, Arrest, Trial, Crucifixion, Burial, and Resurrection Holidays Easter

Matthew 26:1-16

It was time for Passover. Historians estimate that the population of Jerusalem increased tenfold for Passover, which worse than Bonnaroo in Manchester. Jesus and His disciples also traveled there to celebrate the Passover, but Jesus also had another reason for coming. They likely stayed with Lazarus and his sisters in Bethany before heading into Jerusalem proper.

The events in this passage occur on Tuesday evening. … This is just a couple of days before the Passover.

Jesus predicts He will be handed over to be crucified on Passover (Matthew 26:1-2). The chief priests scheme to arrest Jesus, but not until after the seven day feast of unleavened bread (Matthew 26:3-4). … Jesus knew the plan and what would actually happen better than the chief priests did. They thought they could wait and try to avoid riots, but Jesus, in His sovereignty, had other plans.

Mary pours perfume on Jesus while He is eating dinner. The perfume is worth 300 denari, or about a year’s wages (Matthew 26:6-13). … This act by Mary symbolizes Jesus being anointed as king, just as old kings of Israel were anointed with oil. Judas, the treasurer of the disciples, wondered why she would waste such costly perfume instead of selling it and giving the proceeds to the poor. He also embezzled from that fund and saw this as a wasted chance for income for himself. Jesus rebuked him and explained to them all once more what was going to happen.

Judas agrees to hand Jesus over to the chief priests. The price is 30 pieces of silver, about a month’s pay (Matthew 26: 14-16).

What is your valuation of Jesus? … Mary valued Him more than her most valuable possession. Judas valued Him at a month’s wages. … We may not have a bottle of perfume worth a year’s pay, but We have life. We can live our lives for Jesus, reach others for Him and His kingdom. There’s nothing more valuable than that.

A Defense of the Gospel of Salvation by Faith in Jesus: The Law of the Harvest: You Reap What You Sow

Sunday Sermon Series Galatians


Galatians 6:7-18

The law of the harvest states that you always harvest what you plant. … This law applies to many things, not just farming. One area is the spiritual realm. Let’s what “this means.”

This means you can’t fool or outwit God (Galatians 6:7). You cannot get by with sin. Every sin will be judged. See also Matthew 12:36; Luke 12:2-3; 2 Corinthians 5:10. The only relief from the law of the harvest is in the death of Jesus. … Every sin will receive a corresponding punishment. Yes, every sin. Sometimes the punishment comes in this life in the form of consequences, but all will be taken into account on the day of judgment. Fortunately for us, Jesus took the punishment for all our sin when He died on the cross. … This is also the reason we shouldn’t take revenge upon those who have sinned against us. We can rest in the mercy and judgment of God.

This means it is extremely important what you put into your mind and how you invest your life (Galatians 6:8). … When our goal is to appease our fleshly desires, the ultimate outcome is rot and destruction, but when the goal is to please the Spirit then we reap rewards of eternal life. What we put in our mind affects what we sow. For example, if we hold a grudge towards others then that will work its way into the relationship and we won’t reap harmony.

This means the work you do for the Kingdom will bear fruit if you do not give up (Galatians 6:9). … The danger that would shortchange the harvest is that we quit. There’s a time gap between sowing and reaping, between planting and harvesting. This time gap can be frustrating and cause us to lose heart.

This means it is important for us to invest our lives in ministry while there is time or opportunity (Galatians 6:10). … We have an obligation to not only minister to other believers, but also to non-believers and to sow the Gospel among them and to reap the harvest.

Galatians 6:11-18 is the conclusion to this letter. He gives his mark of authenticity and reinforces the main point in the letter, that salvation is by faith in Jesus alone.

Galatians: A Defense of the Gospel of Salvation by Faith in Jesus: Church Life: Shared Life

Sunday Sermon Series Galatians

Galatians 6:1-6

We’ve learned that salvation is an individual thing. The salvation of one does not necessitate the salvation of another. However, that doesn’t mean we are meant to go through life alone. We should live in concert with the church. There are ways we can all serve the church and each other. Serving is one way share life with other believers.

Three ways we are to share our lives with other believers in the church:

  1. Gently restore those who fall into sin (Galatians 6:1). … None of us are perfect and we will each make mistakes and sin. When one of us does mess up, we are to take a redemptive approach and try to keep in the smallest circle possible (unless there are legal matters). Love, forgiveness, and fellowship are powerful tools at our disposal for restoring those who have fallen into sin. However, in attempting to restore one of us, we should be careful not to fall in the same trap ourselves.

  2. Carry each other’s burdens (Galatians 6:2-5). … One way we show our love for another is to help each other. We share our struggles and needs with each other so we can help one another. This is one of the reasons connection groups (Sunday school) is important. It puts us in a group of people similar to us so we can relate to and help each other in life. But there’s also a need to go beyond that connection group and help people in other groups. For example, the elders may need help from some of the younger members with physical tasks and the younger members may need advice from those who have greater life experience. … Paul also issues warnings here. We are to not look down on others because of their burdens. We are also to take responsibility for the burdens we bring on ourselves.

  3. Share financially with those who instruct you in the Word (Galatians 6:6). … We pay those who teach us in school (be it through taxes or private schooling), so why shouldn’t we pay those who also teach us from the Bible?