Series: Let's Talk About Heaven
Have you ever asked yourself, "What happens to the believer upon entering Heaven? Does the Christian just float up to Heaven without a body? Is Heaven our ultimate destination?" During Jesus' crucifixion, in Luke 23:43, Jesus told the thief that was also dying on a cross, "Today, you shall be with me in Paradise." Is Heaven and Paradise the same? What happens to Paradise, or this intermediate Heaven, at the Rapture when every believer will be reunited with their bodies? These are the questions that we will be studying in my new sermon series, "Let's Talk About Heaven." Join us on Sunday mornings, at 10:30 am, and for the next few weeks, we will learn about our eternal home.
Series: Renewing Our Passion
Today, we must be careful about walking in our faith. We need to be cautious of having a 'cool' faith instead of a faith with tears, awe, gratefulness, and a heart that burns for our Lord and Savior. It is time we address our complacency with the world and be more alert of Satan's way of sowing doubt and casualness to our faith. It's time that our hearts burn toward the Christ Who saved us and gave Himself for us. Where are our tears and our praise for the sacrifice of the One Who has loved us?
I am beginning a new series that is entitled "Renewing Our Passion" because I see a passion for the Lord as I turn through the pages of the Bible. I see Jesus weep for the city of Jerusalem (Luke 19:41). I see Jesus weep at the tomb of Lazarus (John 11:35). I see Jesus weep in the garden of Gethsemane with fierce passion. I see Jesus interceding and praying for us (Hebrews 5:7). I see the Apostle Paul reminding the church at Ephesus for three years, day and night, house to house, to plead for repentance toward God, and for faith toward our Lord Jesus Christ, with many tears (Acts 20:20-21,31). And the story ends: "And they knelt down and prayed, and they fell on Paul's neck, deeply moved in the faith, and wept (Acts 20:36-37). I see the Apostle Paul writing a letter to the church, saying, "Being mindful of thy tears" (2 Timothy 2:1:4). I wonder if we see any tears over our sins, or any weeping over the lost today. Why don't we show any passion? These scriptures show that our New Testament faith is a passionate faith. Our faith has heart, soul, and tears in it! Our faith is a heartfelt faith. And I believe it's time we returned to that passion. It's time we burn in our hearts toward the Christ Who saved us and gave Himself for us. Its time for renewal of faith, where there are tears, praise, and raised hands that show our inward and outward passion for the One Who died and rose again to save us and give us this precious hope that we have. Are you ready for your heart to burn again for the Lord?
Series: Road to Redemption
In our series on the Road to Redemption, we are looking at the major miracles of Christ that give us signs to point who He is. Christ Jesus ministered for approximately three years and everything that He did points to Him as the Redeemer, the Mighty Savior, and the only One that forgives sin. Jesus transforms our lives so that today and our eternal tomorrow is sealed with our gift of salvation. Join us each week as we walk with Christ to the cross and then to the greatest miracle of all - The Resurrection of Christ. And because he lives, we shall live also.
Series: Good Sex, God's Way
In February, especially for Valentine's Day, we all begin focusing on the topic of marriage. The Bible has a lot to say about marriage. In Ephesians chapter 5, Paul tells us that God wants husbands to love their wives and for wives to respect their husbands. Of course, this works vice versa. Husbands must respect their wives as well as love them. Also, wives are to respect their husbands as well as love them. How do we do that differently than the culture that we find ourselves in? In Ephesians 5 and 1 Peter 3, Paul says that we should do it by being filled with the Holy Spirit and that we are submit to one another. Another way Paul says this is in Romans 12:10, where he says that we are to“prefer one another” (Romans 12:10). If we would do this, we would have much less conflict in our marriages. Let's face it, if all we are doing is arguing, the energy is taken out of marriage. However, that is not to be a cause for divorce. Jesus tells us that only adultery in marriage is a cause for divorce (Matthew 5:27-28). Here is the bottom line; we are to love and respect our spouse; and we need to be filled with the Holy Spirit and then submit to one another by giving up our own will to the Lord and to each other.
Blessings, Pastor Mickey & Nan
Series: God, You and 2022
Have you ever made a New Year's Resolution? I'm sure you have. It may have been following a diet, seeking a new job, or even visiting a new place. I believe each of us wants 2022 to be a year that we feel closer to God. We want God to be more part of our lives and our faith to be stronger. But, have you ever made a spiritual resolution where you made a commitment to change your thinking and behavior to be more in line with God's Word? This month I will be preaching a series that I have entitled "God, You and 2022." Since the Bible says that God is for us and does not change, and that He sent Jesus for our salvation, then it would have to be up to each of us to either make some small or big changes in how we as Christians are in line with God's perfect will for our lives. Come out and worship with us, and allow God to speak to your mind and to your heart on what changes that you need to make in order to be a better you for 2022.
When you want to know the true meaning of Christmas, you must go to the Gospels. In the Book of Luke, we read that God would cause Mary, a virgin, to conceive a son (Luke 1:26-33). He would be great, the Son of God, and reign over the house of Israel and the world forever.
Isn't it interesting that the angel did not go into the power centers of Israel at that time. God did not send the angel to Judea or to Jerusalem, the capital city of Judea. Neither did God send the angel to the largest worship center at that time. Instead, God sent the angel to Galilee, to the lowly home of a 14 year old girl. In the world's eyes, Mary did not account for much. She had not seen much of the world or had she accomplished anything significant. She was most likely illiterate, and even her knowledge of Scripture was probable what she had memorized from home and heard in worship. From all the indicators, her life would of been simple and not extraordinary at all. She would of married someone of humble origins and gave birth to numerous children. She would of been a nobody in a nothing town in the middle of nowhere. However, the greatest news ever given was sent to her. Mary was aware of this as she sang out, "My soul praises the Lord and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior, for he has been mindful of the humble state of his servant" (Luke 1:46-48).
Whenever we consider those whom God's good new comes, we must remember the words poor and humble. IF the incarnation happened today, do you think it would take place in Washington D.C., New York, or in Rome? No. It would take place as it did then. It would be someplace like New Market or Hazel Green. We must accept the spiritual fact that the Lord comes to needy people, to those who realized they can't make it without him. Christmas is not for the proud and self sufficient, but to those that acknowledge their weaknesses and spiritual needs. I pray that you all have a merry Christmas this year and that you acknowledge Christ in this season.
Series: How We Should Pray
When Jesus gave to us what we call "The Lord's Prayer", he gave us an outline on how to pray. The first part of this great prayer begins with God (Matthew 6:9-10). These verses identify God with the personal pronoun "Your." Then, the second part of the prayer is about our petitions (Matthew 6:11-13). The personal pronouns "us" and "our" reveal that these verses are about our petitions and our needs. Finally, the outline concludes with a doxology where Jesus says for us to give our Heavenly Father the glory that He deserves. Come worship with us at ChristWay Church and be part of this series on "How We Should Pray".
Series: Being Combat Ready
When I served as an Army Chaplain in Iraq and Afghanistan, I did not receive much direct fire from an enemy that was in front of me. Therefore, I did not have many bullets flying at me from an adversary that could be seen. However, I was in combat situations where the enemy fired at us from long distances with mortars and rockets. Once, I was knocked completely to the ground when a 122 rocket shook the very ground I was on, and my chaplain assistant and I immediately took cover. We always had to have our protective gear on. We had our helmets (Mitch), and we had our vital organ protection, called IBA (individual body armor), that protected us from our necks down to our hips. We always had to be ready because we never knew when or how the enemy would attack us. With that being said, the Apostle Paul tells us that we can expect to be spiritually attacked by Satan and his lieutenants. I am beginning a series on "Combat Ready." I invite you to open your Bible to Ephesians 6:10-20, as I begin a list of sermons that other great men of God have preached about on the spiritual warfare that we Christians are engaged in. Blessings to you, the church of Jesus Christ.
Event: New Years Day
As we head into 2021, I wonder what new harbinger might come our way. 2020 brought a great pandemic, a pestilence called Covid 19. Could we have another major harbinger in 2021, or may God give us relief to see if His church repents from complacency of faith, and do the work of evangelists by becoming bold witnesses to an America that is much different today than when it was founded by the early Pilgrims that trusted in God completely? Has our nation left its original self from being "A City upon a Hill" in this world? If we do not awake, we may come to experience what the great Governor of Massachusetts, John Winthrop, stated in 1630 when he said, “If we deal falsely with our God in this work we have undertaken, and so cause him to withdraw his present help from us, we shall be made a story and a byword through the world". My prayer is that the American Church awakes from its sleep and become a shining city upon a hill again so that our nation has revival. Otherwise, will we become a story or byword among the nations of the Earth? Revival and a Spiritual Awakening to God through Christ Jesus is America’s only hope.
Event: Christmas Eve Service
Event: Christmas Season
This coming Sunday begins our celebration of Christmas with thoughts on hope, peace, joy, and love. We are reminded that “God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life (John 3:16). So, with the truth of the gospel story in mind, I will pause on our series, “Are We the Last Generation?”, and focus on the series “The Message of Christmas.” During this series, I will share messages on God’s grace, peace, and the salvation that we have in our true Savior and Messiah, Jesus Christ. We will learn about the importance of God’s free grace in Jesus, about the peace that only He can bring into our life, and about how the cradle points to Christ’s sacrifice and to the cross that He would bear for us. So, as we transition our messages on Sunday from the book of Revelation to those traditional Christmas passages regarding Christ’s first coming, we still lean forward toward our destiny of the future of sharing in the glory of God’s Throne: “Worthy is the Lamb that was slain and is alive forevermore.” I pray this Christmas Season becomes your best. Merry Christmas!
Event: October Prayer Month
Church, as you know I have called a month of prayer for repentance and for our nation. On this October 7th, and every following Sunday in October, we are meeting for “Prayer Meeting” at 6 pm.
As we pray for our churches, our leaders, and our nation, also remember to pray for the following:
Pray for our nation to stop opposing legislation that would guarantee religious freedom and freedom of conscience. Pray that God will continue to protect our right to assemble, to pray, and to speak out about our faith. Remember: “For freedom Christ has set us free; stand firm therefore, and do not submit again to a yoke of slavery” (Galatians 5:1).
Event: Prayer March 2020 @ Washington D.C.
On this Saturday, my wife, Nan, and I plan on joining thousands of Christians that will gather in Washington DC to pray for America because America is in trouble. Divisions, political lies, anarchy, and hate have piled up like a huge bonfire. America is lost and needs saving. Where is the church? Where is our message? Where are our prayers? Are we showing the world the love of Jesus? Are we praying that America returns to its spiritual roots? That is what Saturday, September 26th is all about. Your pastor and your pastor’s wife are going to pray with others, from all Christian denominations, that America’s church will repent and we once again become the light in a dark place. Previously in our history, we were known as a Christian Nation. We were a beacon to what was right in the world. But sadly, the church has remained silent while other voices have spoken up and continue to speak up for their cause – abortion, homosexuality, same-sex marriage, and other non-Biblical ideologies are preached daily, but our voice remains silent. These voices have eroded our nation’s moral compass. So, the American church needs to stand up on her knees and pray. We need to show love where there is hatred. So, I am asking ChristWay Church, along with any of those who want to join, to gather at our church on Saturday, September 26th, 11am, in our sanctuary (or outside in the parking lot), and pray with us for one hour for America. Nan and I will be doing the same as we begin praying with many others at the Lincoln Memorial and end at the US Capitol. We will pray for two hours, and I hope that it will be the beginning of a revival that will sweep our church and our nation. God bless you and God bless America again.
Series: Are we the Last Generation?
Message: Pergamum, The Worldly Church
The church at Pergamum, in Revelation 2, was planted in a city where worldliness was emphasized. For many people in today’s church, the term worldliness has an old-fashioned ring to it. The church that I was raised in spoke of worldliness as being against things like dancing, going to the movies, or playing cards. Today’s user-friendly, market-driven church doesn’t preach much against worldliness. To do so might make unbelievers (not to mention many believers) uncomfortable, and is therefore avoided as a loss in profit for the church. But, unlike much of the contemporary church today, the Bible does not hesitate to condemn worldliness for the serious sin that it is. John McArthur, whose own church is fighting a legal battle to simply meet in worship in California (which is much like the city of Pergamum), says this about worldliness: “Worldliness is any preoccupation with or interest in the temporal system of life that places anything perishable before that which is eternal.” I think that is a good definition for worldliness instead of saying "I can’t play Solitaire or Rummy." Since believers are not part of the world system, check out John 15:19, which tells that us we must not act as though we are part of a world that hates us. “Do not be conformed to this world,” says the apostle Paul, “but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect” (Rom. 12:2). Because we have been redeemed by God’s grace, we are called to “deny ungodliness and worldly desires and to live sensibly, righteously, and godly in the present age” (Titus 2:12). “Pure and undefiled religion,” notes James, consists in keeping “oneself unstained by the world” (James 1:27), because “friendship with the world is hostility toward God. Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God” (James 4:4). First John 2:15–17 makes the believer’s duty to avoid worldliness unmistakably clear:
“Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world. The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but the one who does the will of God lives forever.”
Jesus tells us to repent of our worldliness and He also tells us that we will be rewarded with a new name if we remain faithful. So, I say to you, remain stedfast, immovable in the work of the Lord. See you this Sunday. Come prepared to worship, therefore, prepare yourself…
Series: Are we the Last Generation?
Message: What Happens When Jesus Returns?
If Jesus came back tomorrow, several things would happen. The most joyful thing, and that which we look for as believers in Christ Jesus, is we would be raptured into the presence of Christ. When Jesus ascended into Heaven, He promised that He would return to judge the world, cast the devil and his followers into Hell, and take the church to live forever with Him in Heaven. The Bible warns us to be ready for the second coming of Christ. This week, I will be looking at what happens when Jesus returns. Be watching, be praying, and if we make it to Sunday, come ready to hear the word of God.