It's not enough to just decide to follow Jesus, we actually need to follow through with our decision and live life surrendered to God's plan.
One would think the birth of the Son of God, the Saviour of the World, would be the grandest of affairs. And yet, Jesus' birth was in a humble stable, born to humble parents. Why was it this way? What was God's plan in this?
"Immanuel, God with us." This is the gift of Christmas, that God came to be with us. He is still with us, through all the challenges and trials we may face.
Amidst all the decorations and presents, do we know or remember the real reason for the season? Christmas is about the wonderful gift God gave us, His very own Son, because He loves us, so that we would be able to have eternal life through Christ Jesus.
Names in the Bible have significant meaning, this is especially so when a name is changed, giving new meaning.
The issue of money is certainly one that is important to God. Of the 39 parables that Jesus told, more than half of them deal with greed, generosity or giving. Money is something we use every day, it's our medium of exchange, our very survival depends on it. How can Jesus be Lord of our lives and not be Lord over our finances?
Spiritual warfare is real and we, as Christians, ought to prepare for the battles that we are going to face day by day. It's impossible to enter and win the battle in one's own strength, but through the power of the Lord, and decked out in His armour, we can and will prevail. Prayer is the glue that holds all the other pieces of the armour together.
The debate over homosexuality is one that has become increasingly prominent with the rise of LGBT activism. As the Church we need to be clear on what God says about homosexuality but we also need have God's heart towards those who identify as homosexual, or struggle with homosexuality.
Please note there was an incorrect reference to Mark 8:3-11, this should have been John 8:3-11.
A summary of the sermon, which includes all Scripture references used can be found here: http://www.thenewharvest.org.za/index.php/resources/sermon-summaries/2014-summaries?download=375:homosexuality
The sanctuary is a place dedicated to God's presence and glory, it is a place of safety. Our need for sanctuary is especially so in this busy and demanding age. We need to enter the sanctuary, which is set apart from all the demands, a place where we are restored, refreshed and renewed in the presence of God.
Jesus notices when we're not grateful, thankful or appreciative for all He does for us. It's important for us in our walk with the Lord to take time to acknowledge what God has done and to shout our praise and to give God all the glory that He so rightly deserves.
By far the most common way many people live today, is to live by sight – to base everything only on what they can see and intellectualise and have a logical explanation for. The other way, far less commonly taken, and yet the commanded way is to live by faith, to base your life primarily and ultimately on what you cannot see, but know to be true. Why? Because God says so in His Word – that's why!
How will we live in Heaven? What is life in Heaven like right now as we await the Day of Judgement and our bodily resurection? Can we have an idea of what our new, eternal bodies will be like?
What is Heaven really like? Can we know or even imagine what eternity with God will be like? We can. Not only does the Bible give us many clues as to what Heaven will be like but also the Earth we live on and the good things around us give us a foretaste of what is to come.
The disciples struggled to comprehend and accept that Jesus could in fact supply all their needs. This is a concept we all wrestle with at one time or another, especially during life's hardships and difficulties, yet the reality is that we are never cut off from God's faithfulness.
Focusing on eternity is essential for every Christian and helps prevent us from living like this world is the only one there will be. We counter our natural tendency for greed by being rich toward God and practising the presence of Christ in our lives every day.
God, the Creator of the universe, the author of life, the One who handcrafted the heavens and the ruler of nations, knows and cares for each one of us. Truly this is an amazing and awe-inspiring fact!
Consecration is the devoting or setting apart of anything to the worship or service of God. Before we come to worship God and seek His presence, we need to set ourselves apart from the world of sin. Basically this means that the outcome of our praise and worship on a Sunday is greatly determined by what we do during the week before.
When it comes to worshipping God, it's not a question of where we do it or what style we follow, or merely for what we get out of it. What God wants is for us to worship Him in Spirit and Truth.