clip_image002You are who you are today largely in part due to decisions you have made in the past. It would be nice to blame others, our circumstances and situations (yes, those things play a role in who we are), but we are who we are mainly due to choices we have made. Life is a series of small choices and decisions.

Our lives today are a result of choices we have made in the past. You made choices that brought you good things, and you made choices that brought you bad things. We have made good life choices and bad life choices. Our choices brought us blessings and curses.

Every day, and until the day that we die, we must make choices that lead to life. Today, we can choose life or death. My prayer is that, in this series, we will learn to make choices today that will lead to blessings and life tomorrow!

Let’s start the New Year off right with Life Choices. Join us this Sunday at 9:00 or 11:00 a.m. at Believers Church of Statesboro.

Consider trying the first service this January and see how you like it. Think about it… a wonderful worship service Sunday morning and sitting down for lunch by 11:00 a.m.

What could be better?

Also we will be serving scrumptious items in January such as Hot Chocolate or Apple Cider!

(FIRST SERVICE ONLY).

Choices “Choices” 01/02/11 Believers Statesboro

I Choose to Remember

Joshua 24:1-12

I Choose to Serve the Lord

Joshua 24:14 "Now fear the LORD and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your

forefathers worshiped beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD. (NIV)

Three Things We Must Do:

  1. Fear the Lord. (Give Him the holy respect and honor that is due to Him.)
  2. Serve Him with all faithfulness.
  3. Throw away the gods your forefathers worshiped and SERVE THE LORD!

Choose Who You Will Serve

Joshua 24:15 But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day

whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the

Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD."

You will have to serve somebody.

Choose Light

In the Kingdom of God, there is no gray. You are either serving the darkness or serving the light.

John 3:16-21

…"And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

20 "For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed.

21 "But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God."

John 8:12 “Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, "I am the light of the world. He who follows Me

shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life."

1 Peter 2:9 “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people,

that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;”

In light of what He has done for me, yes I choose to serve Him.

Joshua 24:16-18

16 Then the people answered, "Far be it from us to forsake the LORD to serve other gods!

17 It was the LORD our God himself who brought us and our fathers up out of Egypt, from that land of slavery, and performed those great signs before our eyes. He protected us on our entire journey and among all the nations through which we traveled.

18 And the LORD drove out before us all the nations, including the Amorites, who lived in the land. We too will serve the LORD, because he is our God." (NIV)

A Serious Choice.

Josh 24:19-24

19 Joshua said to the people, "You are not able to serve the LORD. He is a holy God; he is a jealous God. He will not forgive your rebellion and your sins.

20 If you forsake the LORD and serve foreign gods, he will turn and bring disaster on you and make an end of you, after he has been good to you."

21 But the people said to Joshua, "No! We will serve the LORD."

22 Then Joshua said, "You are witnesses against yourselves that you have chosen to serve the LORD." "Yes, we are witnesses," they replied.

23 "Now then," said Joshua, "throw away the foreign gods that are among you and yield your hearts to the LORD, the God of Israel."

24 And the people said to Joshua, "We will serve the LORD our God and obey him." (NIV)

Are you sure you want to serve the Lord? This is not a game we are playing!

Choose Today

Joshua 24:15 But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day

whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the

Amorites, in whose land you are living.

Joshua publicly professed, “But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.”

Is a public declaration that important?

  • Proverbs 18:21, Solomon the wisest man in the world declared, “Life and Death are in the power of the tongue.”
  • Romans 10:8-10 But what does it say? "The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart" (that is, the word of faith which we preach): that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Choose to Publicly Confess Jesus as Lord!

1 Cor 12:2-3 You know that you were Gentiles, carried away to these dumb idols, however you were led. Therefore I make known to you that no one speaking by the Spirit of God calls Jesus accursed, and no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit.

Phil 2:8-11 And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross. Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Today, I am going to give you an opportunity to publicly declare that Jesus is your Savior and Lord and declare that in 2011 you and your house you will serve the Lord!

“Jesus is my Savior and Lord and as for me and my house,

in 2011, we will serve the LORD!”

 

 

Experience a wonderful Sunday worship service and sit down for lunch by 11:00 a.m.

 WHAT COULD BE BETTER!?!

Consider joining us at the 9:00 a.m. service and have the rest of your Sunday for great family fun!

THIS SUNDAY COME EARLY AND ENJOY A CUP OF HOT CHOCOLATE BEFORE THE SERVICE BEGINS!

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Join us Friday night at 10 p.m. for “Light Up the World”!

A New Year’s Eve celebration at Believers Church. Bring your favorite breakfast munchies and bring in 2011 with your Believers Church Family!

We look forward to seeing you here!

New Years Eve Ad1

5 Resolutions Pic

Five resolutions everyone should make before the new year

We’ve all made sincere resolutions to change some area of our lives, and we have all faced the discouragement of failing miserably at what we wanted to change, which brings a sense of underlying guilt.

Take a glance at a catalog, walk through a bookstore, or surf the channels for a while, and you’ll likely be overwhelmed with a sense of what you’re not doing (not exercising enough; not eating right; not managing your money wisely or spending enough time with the kids).

In your notes, there are five resolutions for the New Year. I have committed myself to trying to live out these resolutions. To help make them a little more practical, let’s call them refrigerator resolutions to hang on our fridge at home so that we will be reminded of these resolutions all

year long.

S2 Resolution 1: I will be more childlike.

S3 Matthew 18:3 “I tell you the truth, said Jesus, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the Kingdom of Heaven.”

I get it because kids can teach us something about the Kingdom of God; about being honest, spontaneous, a little bit wacky and how to enjoy life.

Why does God want us to be like little kids?

Can you think of any characteristics of children that you would like to have restored in your life?

As an adult, why did King David become way too adultish and start making adult choices and seeing adult things he shouldn’t be seeing?

And he says to God, in his brokenness, when he’s paying for the consequences of his sin, he cries out to God in Psalm 51:

Oh God! Restore

What?

The joy

Don’t you just love children and the way they think instead of the way adults think?

Sometimes, we are way to adultish.

There’s just something about kids that brings back to me the way I want to be in my life: full of joy. It’s the way you send a kid to the mailbox to get the mail and they never walk, they run.

It’s the way when they see you in the morning, they run and jump in your arms and, no matter how bad your day is going, you feel like “man, this kid loves me”.

S4 You know we have our adult Proverbs, but there’s a first grade teacher who asked her 6-year-old class to finish these adult Proverbs. How would you finish each one?

  1. Better to be safe than (sorry)… punch a 5th grader.
  2. Don’t bite the hand that (feeds you)… looks dirty.
  3. A miss is as good as a (mile)… mister.
  4. Where there’s smoke there’s (fire)… air pollution.
  5. A penny saved is (a penny earned)… not much.
  6. When the blind lead the blind (they both fall into the ditch)… get out of the way.
  7. Children should be seen and not (heard)… spanked or grounded.

The older I get, the younger I want to be in my heart. I want to act younger and be more like a child because it’s what Jesus asked me to do.

You don’t have to get brittle. The problem with the old wineskin isn’t that it’s old, but that it gets brittle because it’s not pliable anymore. When the Holy Spirit wants to do something new in your life and expand your wineskin, you snap! You break!

I don’t want to be like that! I want to be moldable, I want to be shapeable, I want to have room in my life for God to do new things with me.

G. K. Chesterton taught a truth about children that we need to have restored to our lives; we are way too adultish. God make me more childlike. This is what he says about childhood:

S5 “Because little kids have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore, they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say “do it again, dad, do it again, mom” and the grownup person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grownup people are not strong enough to exalt in monotony. But, perhaps God is strong enough to exalt monotony. It’s possible that God says every morning “do it again” to the sun and every evening “do it again” to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God has the eternal appetite of infancy.”

God keep me like that at 30, 40, 50, 60, and 100 years old.

S6 “God give me the eternal appetite of infancy for we beloved have sinned and grown old and our father is younger than we. The repetition in nature may not be mere recurrence; it may be a theatrical encore. ‘Do it again’ says God.

(Share about when Courtney was little)

We get tired of raising the same children day after day, walking the straight and narrow, being responsible for other people’s problems. We get tired of being married to the same person year after year, eating the same foods day after day, doing the same work, attending the same church. So, what we do? We switch. We are constantly switching.

In the Book of Nehemiah, he has scolded and preached truth to the people of Israel.

They had messed up, gotten corrupt, lived for themselves, and didn’t care about blessing other nations. They worshipped the Torah, built a hedge around the law of God, and even called the Gentiles dogs. God told Abraham to bless all nations; but by this time, they were not blessing all nations. They had gotten so inward and self-consumed that Nehemiah just let them have it.

We find them weeping and repenting, and Nehemiah finally tells them, enough.

S7 Nehemiah 8:9-10 9 Then Nehemiah the governor, Ezra the priest and teacher of the Law, and the Levites who were instructing the people said to them all, “This day is holy to the LORD your God. Do not mourn or weep.” For all the people had been weeping as they listened to the words of the Law.

10 Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the LORD is your strength.”

Nehemiah is saying, “you’ve heard God’s word, you know the magnitude of your sin, and you know you messed up and have repented”. He reminded them of the joy of the Lord.

Shame and blame are lousy motivators for living. You cannot grow your faith, your marriage, or your church with shame and blame. The joy of the Lord is your strength, and it’s time to run to the mailbox again and leap into the arms of the people who love you.

It’s the joy of God, and the essence of God is joy.

The cross of Jesus Christ is the greatest thing that ever happened to this planet, but it was the worst day in the history of the world when Jesus died on the cross. The most horrible thing that ever happened on planet earth happened on the day our sinless Jesus was crucified on a Roman cross.

But isn’t God amazing? He took the worst thing that ever happened and turned it into the best thing for us because the cross is not God’s last word. The resurrection is God’s last word.

Resolution 2: I will forgive as I am forgiven.

Write this out and stick with it: “I promise God this year I will forgive. I will become a person of grace. I will forgive as I have been forgiven”.

Hebrews 12:15 “See to it that no one misses the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many”.

If we miss the grace of God, we’ve missed everything. It is the grace of God that teaches us to say no to ungodliness.

If you miss the grace of God, then bitterness will grow up inside you in such a way that it will not just trip you up, but will defile your children and the generations after you.

When people really hurt me, I forgive them. Why? Because Jesus said that if I don’t forgive, I will not be forgiven.

Mark 11:25 25 And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”

So many times, we forgive on the outside, but on the inside we are saying “but I’ll never forget”. If God chooses to forget, then why can’t we?

Hebrews 8:12 “I remember the sins of my people no more”.

The most unnatural act in the world is to forgive another person, and it defies every primal instinct we have.2 IF YOU CAN’T FORGIVE ANOTHER PERSON, YOU BREAK THE BRIDGE OVER WHICH YOU MUST PASS YOURSELF.

Forgive from your heart, not just from your mind or your sense of duty.

Whenever someone breaks in our joy and hurts us, the first thing we want to do is lash back at them. We can’t fight with the weapons of this world.

2 Corinthians 10:3-4 3 For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. 4 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.

Resentment and unforgiveness is a stronghold and can destroy you like a cancer if not dealt with and healed. To forgive is to let go.

Remember that Jesus forgave those who brutally mistreated and crucified Him. If we are to be imitators of Christ, shouldn’t we learn to forgive?

 Resolution 3: I will be a person of one Book (the Word of God)

I will be a man or women who sees the truth about myself in the Bible.

Other Christian books are fine, but nothing should take the place of or take away from the Word.

Hebrews 4:12 “For the Word of God is living and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword. It penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

I keep going back to the Bible because it tells me the truth about myself. It’s like a mirror; I can’t really see myself in reality the way I truly am unless I am in this Word.

The Bible keeps us honest. It will never let us down. It has proven time and again to be historically accurate. It is not a science text, but when there are things that science would disagree with, you will find the Bible in agreement with science.

There is no book in the whole world anywhere near with the manuscript documentation and source authority that this Book has.

 2 Timothy 2:15 15Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

(Promote One Year Bible)

Everything else passes away, but His Word goes on forever!

S17 Resolution 4: I will fight only one enemy

There’s only one enemy of my soul, and from this moment on, I will stop fighting other people. I fight Satan himself.

 Ephesians 6:12 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

Our fight is not against one another, but against Satan himself.

I don’t know how you feel about Satan. You might think he’s a cartoon character who doesn’t really exist, but Jesus knew he was real. If you don’t understand that Satan was always on the mind of Jesus Christ, you do not understand the mind of Jesus Christ. Don’t come to Believers Church if you don’t want to hear the whole counsel of God preached. If you want to hear certain things skipped in other churches, you cannot come to this church because we hate Satan with a holy passion.

S19 Want to know how to have passion for Christ? Know who your enemy is.

John 10:10 10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

S20 Resolution 5: I will give myself away

1 1 John 4:20 20 Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen.

We cannot love God and hate others. It just doesn’t work that way. We must have Godly love in our hearts and give ourselves away to loving and serving one another.

Jesus Himself did not come to be served, but to serve. That’s why He washed the disciples’ feet. He did that to teach us that it’s not about us, but about others.

God has gifted each of us with a unique personality, and He wants to use us to reach this lost and dying world.

We teach in relational evangelism here at Believers Church. We believe that God strategically places us in different areas and causes us to cross paths with people to perhaps build relationships and share the love of Christ. It’s what I call Divine Appointments (meeting Sarah Ann).

(Share about Dino Rizzo)

Jesus left the 99 to go and find one. If “the one” is important to Jesus, then shouldn’t we be concerned about “the one”?

“Choices” begins 1/2/11

December 23rd, 2010

Choices Promo

 

You are who you are today largely in part to decisions you have made in the past. It would be nice to blame others, our circumstances and situations (yes, those things play a role in who we are), but we are who we are mainly due to choices we have made. Life is a series of small choices and decisions.Our lives today are a result of choices we have made in the past. You made choices that brought you good things, and you made choices that brought you bad things. We have made good life choices and bad life choices. Our choices brought us blessings and curses. Some choices we made would have resulted in disaster had it not been for the grace of God. Other choice weren’t that good, but God made them better than they should have been.

Every day, and until the day that we die, we must make choices that lead to life.

Today, we can choose life or death. My prayer is that, in this series, we will learn to make choices today that will lead to blessings and life tomorrow!

I Choose to Remember

Joshua 24:1-12

1 Then Joshua assembled all the tribes of Israel at Shechem. He summoned the elders, leaders, judges and officials of Israel, and they presented themselves before God.

2 Joshua said to all the people, "This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: ‘Long ago your forefathers, including Terah the father of Abraham and Nahor, lived beyond the River and worshiped other gods.

3 But I took your father Abraham from the land beyond the River and led him throughout Canaan and gave him many descendants. I gave him Isaac,

4 and to Isaac I gave Jacob and Esau. I assigned the hill country of Seir to Esau, but Jacob and his sons went down to Egypt.

5 "’Then I sent Moses and Aaron, and I afflicted the Egyptians by what I did there, and I brought you out.

6 When I brought your fathers out of Egypt, you came to the sea, and the Egyptians pursued them with chariots and horsemen as far as the Red Sea.

7 But they cried to the LORD for help, and he put darkness between you and the Egyptians; he brought the sea over them and covered them. You saw with your own eyes what I did to the Egyptians. Then you lived in the desert for a long time.

8 "’I brought you to the land of the Amorites who lived east of the Jordan. They fought against you, but I gave them into your hands. I destroyed them from before you, and you took possession of their land.

9 When Balak son of Zippor, the king of Moab, prepared to fight against Israel, he sent for Balaam son of Beor to put a curse on you.

10 But I would not listen to Balaam, so he blessed you again and again, and I delivered you out of his hand.

11 "’Then you crossed the Jordan and came to Jericho. The citizens of Jericho fought against you, as did also the Amorites, Perizzites, Canaanites, Hittites, Girgashites, Hivites and Jebusites, but I gave them into your hands.

12 I sent the hornet ahead of you, which drove them out before you– also the two Amorite kings. You did not do it with your own sword and bow. (NIV)

13 So I gave you a land on which you did not toil and cities you did not build; and you live in them and eat from vineyards and olive groves that you did not plant.’ (NIV)

  • We are a blessed people! Born into a free country! Most of us didn’t have to labor for our freedom. Others did that for us.
  • We live in a city that we didn’t have to build. We eat what we didn’t have to plant.
  • We are living in very good times! We are a blessed people living in a blessed nation!

I Choose to Serve the Lord

Joshua 24:14

14 "Now fear the LORD and serve him with all faithfulness. Throw away the gods your forefathers worshiped beyond the River and in Egypt, and serve the LORD. (NIV)

Three Things We Must Do:

  1. Fear the Lord. (Give Him the holy respect and honor that is due to Him.)
  2. Serve Him with all faithfulness.
  3. Throw away the gods your forefathers worshiped and SERVE THE LORD!

Choose Who You Will Serve

Joshua 24:15

15 But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living. But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD." (NIV)

Choose for yourself this day who you will serve!

Make a choice; serve the sinful ways of the past or serve the Lord!

EX: Well, this is the way I was raised…This is how my family has always done it…. This is the American way… This is fully acceptable in our society… I’ve always gotten by before.

God had given us a FREE WILL!

  • We have been created with the ability to make our own decisions.
  • Notice, as you read the Bible through this year, that the entire history of Israel is an illustration of the fulfillment of God’s promises according to the people’s choices and their behavior.

(Good or Bad)

You will have to serve somebody.

“Hey, I’m my own person, and I’m not going to serve anybody. I’m not ready to serve God, but I

certainly am not serving the devil,” You will be serving one or the other.

Choose Light

In the Kingdom of God, there is no gray. Everything is a black or white issue.

  • You are either walking in the light or in the darkness.
  • Your actions and deeds either reflect the light or the darkness.
  • You are either obeying the light or obeying the darkness.

You are either serving the darkness or serving the light.

John 3:16-21

16 "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

17 "For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.

18 "He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

19 "And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

20 "For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed.

21 "But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God."

John 8:12 “Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, "I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life."

1 Pet 2:9 “But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;”

In light of what He has done for me, yes I choose to serve Him.

Joshua 24:16-18

16 Then the people answered, "Far be it from us to forsake the LORD to serve other gods!

17 It was the LORD our God himself who brought us and our fathers up out of Egypt, from that land of slavery, and performed those great signs before our eyes. He protected us on our entire journey and among all the nations through which we traveled.

18 And the LORD drove out before us all the nations, including the Amorites, who lived in the land. We too will serve the LORD, because he is our God." (NIV)

We may say “Hey Joshua, in light of what the Lord has done for us, there is no way we will forsake the Lord and serve other Gods!”

EX: You would think…. (JOKE) Preacher who becomes a mortician.

A Serious Choice.

Josh 24:19-24

19 Joshua said to the people, "You are not able to serve the LORD. He is a holy God; he is a jealous God. He will not forgive your rebellion and your sins.

20 If you forsake the LORD and serve foreign gods, he will turn and bring disaster on you and make an end of you, after he has been good to you."

21 But the people said to Joshua, "No! We will serve the LORD."

22 Then Joshua said, "You are witnesses against yourselves that you have chosen to serve the LORD." "Yes, we are witnesses," they replied.

23 "Now then," said Joshua, "throw away the foreign gods that are among you and yield your hearts to the LORD, the God of Israel."

24 And the people said to Joshua, "We will serve the LORD our God and obey him." (NIV)

Are you sure you want to serve the Lord? This is not a game we are playing!

Choose Today

Joshua 24:15

15 But if serving the LORD seems undesirable to you, then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your forefathers served beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land you are living.

But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD." (NIV)

As for me and my house, we:

  • Won’t walk in the sins of our forefathers.
  • Will bless rather than curse.
  • Won’t pollute our minds with sitcoms, profanity, sex, porno, lust, fornication, or adultery.
  • Won’t participate in substance abuse.
  • Will treat others as we would like to be treated.
  • Won’t have prejudices. / Will be honest. / Won’t steal. / Won’t cheat. / Won’t lie.
  • Will increase church attendance. / Will tithe. / Will get involved in a Life Group.
  • Will read God’s Word.

Church – We Need to Step it up in 2011!

  • We choose to pray.
  • We choose to feast on the Word of God.
  • We choose to be led by the Holy Spirit.
  • We choose to serve.
  • We choose to minister.
  • We need to believe!

Joshua publicly professed, “But as for me and my household, we will serve the LORD.”

Is a public confession really that important? Is a public declaration that important?

Some ask, “Isn’t just believing it in my heart enough? Are our words really that powerful?”

  • Proverbs 18:21, Solomon the wisest man in the world declared, “Life and Death are in the power of the tongue.”
  • Your words can be LIFE GIVING, or you can SPEAK DEATH.

Romans 10:8-10

8 But what does it say? "The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart" (that is, the word of faith which we preach):

9 that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.

10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Choose to Publicly Confess Jesus as Lord!

1 Cor 12:2-3

2 You know that you were Gentiles, carried away to these dumb idols, however you were led.

3 Therefore I make known to you that no one speaking by the Spirit of God calls Jesus accursed, and no one can say that Jesus is Lord except by the Holy Spirit.

Phil 2:8-11

8 And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.

9 Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name,

10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth,

11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Today, I am going to give you an opportunity to publicly declare that Jesus is your Savior and Lord and declare that in 2011 you and your house you will serve the Lord!

“Jesus is my Savior and Lord and as for me and my house, in 2011, we will serve the LORD!”

Christmas Eve Services

December 22nd, 2010

Join us at Believers Church of Statesboro for our Christmas Eve Service.

Services at 5pm & 6:30 pm.

We hope to see you for an evening of Worship and Communion. 

Christmas Eve Service Public Promo

“The Gift”

Two Performances Sunday, December 19th

9:00 am & 11:00 am.

The GIFT Promo

Receiving Forgiveness

December 2nd, 2010

12-05-10 Christmas is Forgiving Promo

In Week One of Christmas Is For-giving, we looked at forgiving those who have hurt us. Last week, we looked at initiating forgiveness, going to those that we’ve hurt and asking forgiveness. This week, we are going to look at forgiving ourselves or moving on beyond the hurt that we’ve experienced in our own lives as we receive forgiveness from God.

We may be visited by a few ghosts as well this Sunday: the ghosts of Christmas past, present and future. Join us at 9 or 11 for a meaningful Christmas experience.

Christmas Is Forgiving Wk 3 “Receiving Forgiveness” Believers Statesboro 12-05-10

In Week One, we looked at forgiving those who have hurt us. Last week, we looked at initiating forgiveness, going to those that we’ve hurt and asking forgiveness. This week, we are going to look at forgiving ourselves or moving on beyond the hurt that we’ve experienced in our own lives as we receive forgiveness from God.

Matt 1:21-22 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus (Jesus means the Lord saves) Why? because he will save his people from their sins." All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet: (NIV)

Many of us, as we go into the Holidays, we will reflect on the past. For a lot of people, there are good reflections of what all God has done. For others, this can be a season of disappointment, hurt and regret. A lot of pain can surface during the Holidays. “Life is all fun and games until someone gets hurt.”

Most of us carry a lot of pain and a lot of regret. What we are going to do in our study today is to look at how to move beyond the pain and move into the blessings that God would have for us in the future.

Godly Sorrow and Worldly Sorrow

Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death. 2 Corinthians 7:10

Godly sorrow: “God, I’m sorry that I’ve done something against Your plan. I’m sorry for the people that it’s hurt.” This kind of sorrow leads to forgiveness and life. It leaves no regret. There’s another kind of sorrow, which I would argue, most people carry around. That is a worldly sorrow. “I’m sorry I did this. I’m sorry for how it is affecting me.” It’s a very inward and a depressed sorrow.

David’s Sorrow

2 Sam 12:15-16 After Nathan had gone home, the LORD struck the child that Uriah’s wife had borne to David, and he became ill. David pleaded with God for the child. He fasted and went into his house and spent the nights lying on the ground. (NIV) For seven days, he did this, but… the child died.

David carried the guilt because he knew that he was the guilty one, and it affected someone who was innocent. Let’s look at what he did to move forward.

HOW TO MOVE FORWARD

1) ACCEPT WHAT CANNOT BE CHANGED.

2 Samuel 12:22-23 He answered, "While the child was still alive, I fasted and wept. I thought, ‘Who knows? The LORD may be gracious to me and let the child live.’ But now that he is dead, why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I will go to him, but he will not return to me."

Some are continuing the mourning process for something that can never be changed.

There’s something that you wish that could change, but it’s never going to change. Before you can move forward, you have to start by accepting that it can never be changed.

2) GIVE IT UP TO GOD.

Whatever is the burden, the guilt, the heaviness, the regret that we are carrying, we must learn to give it over, give it up to God.

2 Samuel 12:20 Then David got up from the ground. After he had washed, put on lotions and changed his clothes, he went into the house of the LORD and worshiped.

You can turn: Inward Outward Upward

Inward – “Oh, I can’t believe this happened. Oh, I feel so badly about this. Oh, I’m such a miserable person.”

Outward – That is, “Would you please validate my existence? Would you please tell me I’m not that bad of a person? Or I need a hit or a smoke or a drug, or something from the outside to help numb away the pain and guilt that I feel.”

Upward – We can turn toward God, and God alone can be our source of strength and peace during times of pain.

God is a good God, a comforting God. The Bible says there is a peace that surpasses all understanding.

Isaiah 6:1 In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple.

Now, let’s put this in context. He opened up this chapter by saying this. He said, “In the year that King Uzziah died.” Now, what was he saying? Basically, he was saying, “In the year that my world fell apart, I saw the Lord.” In the year where nothing made sense, I still received the presence of God. I saw Him high and lifted up. His presence, His power, and His peace were enough for me to keep going.

Some who are here this weekend need to embrace the fact that the past is not going to change, and we must take our burden, our heaviness, our guilt, our regret and learn to give it over to God.

3) FOCUS ON WHAT IS LEFT, NOT LOST.

Just like David, we must learn to focus on what is left, not lost.

2 Samuel 12:24 Then David comforted his wife Bathsheba, and he went to her and lay with her. She gave birth to a son, and they named him Solomon. The LORD loved him.

God didn’t change the past, but God brought something new. Our spiritual enemy wants us to look back, to look back and to live in the pain of the past. Don’t look back. Paul said it this way.

Phil 3:13-15 Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. All of us who are mature should take such a view of things. And if on some point you think differently, that too God will make clear to you. (NIV)

The problem with many of us is we tend to remember the things that we should forget, and we forget the things that we should remember.

Forgiveness and a second chance. Why did Jesus come? Jesus did not come to condemn the world, but to what? To save it.

"Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.

Isaiah 43:18-19

What is God saying? Doing something new, something different, don’t dwell on the past. As a new year approaches, grab it with a spiritual new birth of the risen Christ, who says, “I forgive, and I give second chances. Godly sorrow leads to life. Worldly sorrow leads to death.

A lot of people don’t know that the story of David’s fall and God’s story of rebuilding his life is a big part of the Christmas story. “…and Jesse the father of King David. David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife…” Matthew 1:6

This is the genealogy, the lineage of life passed down through Jesus Christ.

She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus (The Lord Saves), because he will save his people from their sins." All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet. Matthew 1:21-22

All of this? All of Matthew 1. “All of this,” including the lowest point in David’s life and God’s restoration, all of this took place to fulfill what the Lord said through the prophet.

That is the work of an amazing God who forgives sins and gives second chances.

Hebrews Ch. 12 Tonight!

December 1st, 2010

One Hour on Wednesday tonight @ 7:00pm. Come join us in our study of Hebrews!

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