The gospel is powerful; powerful enough to save from sin and powerful enough to transform who we are. In chapter 3 of Titus, Paul provides instructions detailing how Christians should act within the local culture as citizens of a pagan nation. And he grounds our ability to live this way in the power of the gospel. God's loving kindness has reached us, saved us and is producing ongoing transformation within us, enabling us to live lives that glorify God as we are zealous to do good works.
This week we are delighted to welcome Andrew Pack as our guest preacher. Andrew is one of the pastors at Restoration Road Church in Snohomish, and he is the Executive Director of 3 Strand, a local network of churches seeking to advance the gospel in our region by strengthening churches and making disciples. He will be picking up where we left off last week in the Book of Titus. We are blessed to have him with us this morning.
The Apostle Paul writes to Titus, urging him to continue in their task of evangelizing the lost on the island of Crete and to strengthen local churches by appointing elders in every congregation. The elders who are appointed must be qualified to lead. And so Paul provides Titus, as he did Timothy, with a list of important, non-negotiable qualifications for these men. These elders will serve to promote discipleship, live as an example for others to follow and protect the church from harmful, false doctrine. Therefore, elders must be qualified to do so. Qualified elders produce and promote godliness within the church and guard the church from error.
This week we conclude our sermon series in the Psalms. The Psalter closes with a Hallelujah chorus of sorts, exhorting everything, everything in Heaven and everything below, to praise the Lord. All creation shall be a symphony of praise to our great God.
We come this morning to an Imprecatory Psalm; a psalm in which the author calls on God to judge his enemies. Within Psalm 139, righteous anger is modeled for us. Clearly there is a right way to be angry and a wrong way to be angry, a sinful way. And this text helps us learn the right way to be angry. If our anger is to be righteous it must be God-centered, primarily focused on God's concerns and glory.
Psalm 119 is a massive memorial to the timeless Word of God. This psalm, the longest chapter in the Bible, describes the many qualities of Scripture and extols the benefits that Scripture produces in the lives of those who will be trained by it. In order for the Word of God to become profitable for us we have to lay hold of it in and with our hearts. Those who do so shall be sanctified, live purely and guarded from stumbling. Happy is he who delights in and does not forget God's Word.
In Psalm 110 David presents a vivd prophetic vision of a triumphant messianic king who would one day come be the ultimate deliverer of God’s people. In this sermon we explore a message of future -and ultimate- hope for God’s people. A hope rooted not in any earthy king but in someone and something far greater.
We all clearly recognize that the world is not as it should be. The world is broken and filled with suffering. This is a result of sin and God's righteous judgment upon sin. Despite the disorder on the earth, the Lord is mighty in power, sovereignty and unchanged. Therefore, He offers himself as a secure refuge, a dwelling place for all those who trust in him. And his Word exhorts us to think wisely about our frail, fleeting lives so that we will not waste them chasing frivolous endeavors but instead, live a life ultimately satisfied by his steadfast love.
We look at a Psalm of Ascents to consider what it means to gather for corporate worship. How do we relate the practices of ancient Israel to the modern church? We will see that the centrality of gathering together marks us as pilgrims on the road to the New Jerusalem.