11.23.08 gbcvic sermon summaries

The Rite judged by the Un-Rite if the Un-Rite is Right (Rm 2.26-27)

In this message we look at what good our religion is if we have the right rites but the wrong lives. Paul proposes a situation where the uncircumcised (the Un-Rite)nevertheless keeps the righteousness of the Law. He asks, will not his law keeping equal the value of your circumcision? Moreover, will not his law keeping judge your law breaking? Jesus gave examples, the men of Nineveh and the ‘queen of the south’ (Mt 12.41-42). The same problems attend our religion today. We have the Bible,we have baptism, we have the customs and practices of Christianity, but when we sin (as professing Christians) we stand judged by the lives of non-Christians who don’t sin in the same ways we do.

All of this builds the case that neither morality (Rm 2.1-16) nor religion (Rm 2.17-29) can exempt us from the judgement of God and the sentence of wrath that has fallen on mankind. (Rm 1.18-32). We need something superior to morality and religion.

Pilgrim’s Progress: Ignorance Ignores Christian (pp. 174-187)

In this session we see the renewed attempt by Christian and Hopeful to evangelize Ignorance. Ignorance is completely confident in his own obedience, he has no sense that he needs more than his own self-justification. He does not know he needs the merits of Christ. Leaving him to his own deserts, Christian and Hopeful talk of another man, Mr. Temporary, who made a show of going on a pilgrimage, but turned back when his mind was not changed, he feared other men, could not bear the shame of religion and was grieved to feel guilt for his sin.

Cultivating the Fruit of the Spirit (Gal 5.16-24)

Our message this afternoon returns to a theme we considered eight years ago, the fruit of the Spirit as taught in Galatians. Today’s message looked at the whole idea of spiritual fruit, the desirability of spiritual fruit, and the method of cultivating spiritual fruit. For cultivation, we must crucify the flesh — weed the garden, and so enhance the working of the Spirit in our own lives.

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We had a visiting couple today… lots of visitors lately, but not many returnees. That’s what we would really like, but so far our many visitors lately have been just visitors.

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