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Luke's report of the disciples' activities as they waited for the Spirit's promised coming at Pentecost gives a pattern we would do well to emulate if we would prepare for an outpouring of the Spirit in revival.  Though Pentecost was a unique inaugural event in the Church's life, the steps that preceded it are essential for any fresh work of the Spirit.  (Larkin, 1995)

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Paul knew the problems that arise in any Christian society. The best people can slip up.  The word Paul uses (paraptoma) does not mean a deliberate sin; but a slip that might come to someone on an icy road or a dangerous path. Now, the danger of those who are really trying to live the Christian life is that they are apt to judge the sins of others harshly  There is an element of hardness in any good people.  There are any good people to whom you could not go and sob out a story of failure and defeat; they would be bleakly unsympathetic. (Barclay, W. 2002).

Direct download: Sermon_10-22-17.mp3
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What blows do athletes receive in their face, what blows all over their body. Yet they bear all the torture from thirst to glory. Let us also overcome all things, for your reward is not a crown or a palm branch or the trumpeter proclaiming silence for the announcement of our name, but virtue and strength of mind and peace acquired ever after.

(Lightfoot (St Paul and Seneca) quotes from Seneca (Ep. Mor. IXXVIII.16). [The International Critical Commentary, Robertson and Plummer, p. 195)

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The apostle having commended their obedience for the time past, and mentioned his confidence in their obedience for the time to come, proceeds to give them commands and directions to some who were faulty, correcting some things that were amiss among them. (Henry, M. 1994).

Direct download: Sermon_10-8-17.mp3
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Jesus did not manipulate people. He did not try to back them into corners where they could do nothing but what he wanted them to do.  He always presented the truth in love and allowed people the latitude to act upon it as they saw fit.  Many responded to His message, others chose not to.  We must be careful to follow this example in our evangelism.  Always remember that just as easily as you can manipulate a person in accepting the gospel and giving their life to Jesus, someone else can manipulate them out of it.  People must choose for themselves based on the truth and love- that is the only way evangelism will be effective and long- lasting. (McClung, 1988).

Direct download: Sermon_10-1-17.mp3
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