Sermon Title: Saved by Grace Through Faith and Nothing Else, Pt. 1
Introduction: Some of the Pharisees who had converted to Christianity wanted to impose the Mosaic Law on the Gentile believers. This led to a serious debate in the church. Paul and Barnabas along with a delegation go to Jerusalem and discuss the issue with the apostles and elders there. Peter points out that God has accepted the Gentiles as they are and given them the Holy Spirit just as He has given the Spirit to Jewish believers. The spread of the Gospel has often been hindered by people who stand in front of doors God has opened and block the way for others. In attempting to mix the Law and grace, the Pharisees were trying as Luke described, to pour new wine into old wineskins (Luke 5:36–39). They were blocking the new way to God, opened by Jesus when He died on the cross. Throughout the history of the church, leaders have met to settle doctrinal issues. Yet, the most important council was this first Jerusalem Council which established the answer to the most vital doctrinal question of all: “What must a person do to be saved?” The apostles defied efforts to impose legalism as requirements for salvation. They forever affirmed that salvation is totally by grace through faith in Christ alone.
We have to defend the truth of the Gospel
When people give their life to Christ it should fill us with great joy
Only God knows the true heart of those that believe
We need to be careful not to test God by adding to his plan of Salvation
Everyone that is saved, is saved by grace thru faith in Jesus Christ
2 Timothy 1:9
Scripture: Acts 16: 16-34
Sermon Title: Joy in the Midst of Suffering
Introduction: Paul casts a demon out of a slave girl used as a fortune-teller that were following and annoying the disciples as they proclaimed the gospel of Jesus Christ. Upset over what they had done, the girl's owners charged them with bringing trouble to the city. The crowd joins in the attack, and the city magistrates have Paul and Silas beaten and thrown into prison. This didn't stop Paul and Silas because although their bodies were bleeding and hurting, their spirts soared. We are told around midnight they were praying and singing hymns to God. God sent an earthquake to shake the foundations of the prison and the doors were opened and the prisoner's chains were loosed.
We have power in the name of Jesus
We can still have joy in the midst of suffering
God is able to use our Joy in the mist of our suffering to save souls
Scripture: Acts 17:16-34
Sermon Title: Proclaiming the True God in a World Filled with False Gods
Introduction: Paul and Silas depart from Philippi after being beaten and put in prison for casting a demon out of a slave girl who had made a lot of money for her owners through fortune telling. They arrive in Thessalonica and proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ, but they are forced to leave there as well. They came to Berea where they preached and many believed until some from Thessalonica arrived and stirred up trouble. Paul leaves and goes to Athens, but Silas and Timothy stay in Berea. Paul’s stay in Athens is brief, but important and it helps us understand how to share the Gospel to those that do not know God. Paul preached to a crowd very different from the Jews and God-fearing Gentiles whom he usually encountered. Athens was a pagan city that was nourished by idolatry, (Acts 17:21), and philosophy. Seeing this idolatry broke Paul's heart and he was moved to share the Gospel. Paul begins his message with reference to an “unknown God”", that he has observed among their many objects of worship.
Seeing the conditions of the world should stir up our spirit
We need to find and take advantage of opportunities to share the Gospel
It’s time to repent and believe in Jesus Christ
We need to share with one another what the Lord has done for us
Judgement is coming upon this world
Scripture: Acts 19:11-20
Sermon Title: God is Able to Use Anything to Magnify and Glorify His Name
Introduction: After departing from Athens, Paul goes to Corinth. Corinth was a busy port city, it was the capital of Achaia. It was a very prosperous city and a center for worship of the love goddess, Aphrodite, was well known for its immorality and indulgences. Paul comes to this city shortly after the emperor Claudius has expelled the Jews from Rome. Here he meets Aquila and his wife Priscilla and stays with making tents to provide for himself and not to be a burden. After Silas and Timothy arrives and the Jews rejected the Gospel in the synagogue, Paul starts a church in the house of certain man named Justus, one who worshiped God, whose house was next door to the synagogue. Paul has a vision from the Lord telling him not to be afraid but speak, and do not keep silent; "for I am with you, and no one will attack you to hurt you; for I have many people in this city.” Paul stays in Corinth for at least eighteen months preaching and teaching the Word of God.
The word of God is the only thing that should be proclaim on Sunday in the Lord’s house
Those that reject the Gospel , blood is upon their own heads
We can never stop proclaiming the Gospel because someone will hear it, believe it, and be saved by it
We don’t have to be afraid to proclaim the truth because Jesus is with us
Once we are saved, we must be taught the word of God.
Scripture: Acts 20:17-24
Sermon Title: Finishing Our Race With Joy
Introduction: Paul revisits the churches he has established in Macedonia and Greece. His sense of urgency to share all he can to the believers is illustrated by his all-night teaching at Troas. Luke shows this urgency that drives Paul as he writes that he is unwilling to take time to revisit Ephesus and sends messengers to have the elders of that city meet him as he passes by. As Paul reviews his ministry, he shares that he is “bound in the spirit” to go to Jerusalem, knowing danger, imprisonment, and hardships await. If you want to catch the heart of Paul, consider his statements: “Serving the Lord . . . I kept back nothing . . . that I may finish my race with joy. We can't read this without being convinced that it came from a heart full of love and kindness. Even in the face of danger and death, Paul remained committed to his primary goal, preaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
Our life should be an example to others
We must proclaim the truth of the Word of God
We must be devoted with our life in serving the Lord
1 Corinthians 11:1
1 Thessalonians 2:6
2 Corinthians 2:4
2 Timothy 3:16
Scripture: Acts 21:10-14
Sermon Title: On a Mission from the Lord, and Nothing Can Stop Us
Introduction: Paul is warned about what awaits him in Jerusalem by Agabus in Caesarea, “Thus says the Holy Spirit, ‘So shall the Jews at Jerusalem bind the man who owns this belt, and deliver him into the hands of the Gentiles” (21:9–12). Agabus, a prophet, offers Paul the word of the Lord concerning his return to Jerusalem. This prophecy confirmed to Paul the necessity of his decision to continue on to Jerusalem. The ministry of the Holy Spirit is consistent and reinforces our understanding of God’s purpose for our life. Though the many tears of his Christian brothers and sisters breaks his heart, Paul is still willing to die for the name of Jesus, if it is the will of God.
God has forewarned us of things to come
We can allow anything stop us from doing what God has called us to do
We must be willing to suffer persecution for Christ
2 Timothy 3:12
Scripture: Acts 22:1-15
Sermon Title: Having Compassion for the Lost (Called to be a Witness)
Introduction: In today's text, Paul returns to Jerusalem. He is welcomed into the city and finds that there are now thousands of Jews who believe in Jesus. However, others are still zealous to the Law of Moses. The Christian leaders suggest Paul show his devotion by joining several brothers who have made a vow according to the law . He would show “that he himself is living in obedience to the law” . Paul takes their advice and makes the vow. Paul is recognized in the temple, and his companions are mistaken for Gentile converts. For Gentiles to enter the temple area where only Jews are permitted was considered a great desecration. Paul is dragged out of the courtyard and barely rescued by Roman troops. He receives permission from the Roman officer to speak to the crowd. He identifies himself and tells of his Jewish background. Paul gives his testimony, telling of his conversion from prosecuting Jesus' followers to becoming a follower. As Paul retells the vision in which God commands him to preach the gospel to the Gentiles, the riot explodes again. Paul spoke to the crowd in their native language, and this helped quiet them down. While he was unable to finish his full testimony, he did get to explain three important aspects of his life and ministry: his early conduct; his conversion; and his special calling.
We have to be tactful and respectful when sharing the Gospel
We need to have compassion for people , for we were once lost just as they are
Coming in contact with Jesus will change your whole life.
When the Lord calls , you need to answer for he has a purpose and plan for your life
We have been choosing by God to be his witness
2 Corinthians 11:22
2 Corinthians 5:17