A Mature Believer is…

matureAccording to Paul, what does maturity look like for the believer?  Maturity is not being held down by the past, believing that Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection are sufficient even for the worst that you have ever done, and pressing forward in worship and obedience knowing that Heaven awaits.

Remember just a second ago when I said, “Paul knows this and Paul knows that?”  Well, maturity as a believer in Christ is you knowing those things.

So, let’s personalize them for a moment as we head towards a conclusion.  Paul knew that God has removed his sin and guilt, right?  Maturity for you is to say, “I know God has removed my sin AND my guilt.”  Paul knew that he had been called up to Heaven to enjoy Jesus Christ.

Maturity for you is to say, “I know God has called me up to Heaven to enjoy Jesus Christ.”  And Paul knew what pressing forward meant.  Maturity for you means no longer beating yourself up for your past sins, growing in knowing all that God has gifted you, and then growing in obedience and worship.

The excerpt above is from this past week’s sermon at Evident Grace Fellowship where we explored how hope in Christ is so secure, God’s commands, and we can count on it.  The devotional pdf’s, kindle, and audio are up.

You can download the pdf’s for free at:

Philippians 1:1-8

Philippians 1:8-11

Philippians 1:12-14

Philippians 1:15-18

Philippians 1:19-21

Philippians 1:22-26

Philippians 1:27-30

Philippians 2:1-4

Philippians 2:5-11

Philippians 2:12-18

Philippians 2:19-30

Philippians 3:1-7

Philippians 3:7-11

Philippians 3:12-16

And audio for Philippians 1:15-18 is here.

Audio for Philippians 1:19-21 is here.

Audio for Philippians 1:22-26 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:1-4 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:5-11 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:12-18 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:19-30 is here.

Audio for Philippians 3:1-7 is here.

Audio for Philippians 3:7-11 is here.

Audio for Philippians 3:12-16 is here.

Also, we are making all of our devotional pdf’s available on Kindle as well.  Because these are available at places other than Amazon, we have to charge $.99 for these, but all proceeds go back to Evident Grace.  You can find our Kindle devotionals at:

Philippians 1:1-8

Philippians 1:8-11

Philippians 1:12-14

Philippians 1:15-18

Philippians 1:19-21

Philippians 1:22-26

Philippians 1:27-30

Philippians 2:1-4

Philippians 2:5-11

Philippians 2:12-18

Philippians 2:19-30

Philippians 3:1-7

Philippians 3:7-11

Philippians 3:12-16

Thanks for taking the time to look over these with us.  Join the conversation either by worshiping with us on Sunday, getting together with us throughout the week, or discussing these online or at Facebook.

Thanks.

If you are interested in worshiping with Evident Grace, we meet each Sunday at 1030am at the comedy club above Liberty Lanes off of I-95 exit 126 in Spotsylvania, VA.

Service Preview for 072813

maturityPaul this week is going to tell us that maturity as a believer is not measured by passing theological exams but by applying the work of Jesus.  Please join us Evident Grace this Sunday at 1030 am as we meet in the comedy club above Liberty Lanes.  Until then, enjoy this service preview.

You see, biblical knowledge and theological knowledge find their root in the freshest soil that is free from guilt.  But the soil of guilt and reminding people of their sin is a spoiled dirt that creates theological and biblical self-righteousness and stinks of hell.  It leads to looking down on other believers who are supposedly not as smart and leads to discompassionate judgmentalism towards non-believers.

We are not called to a maturity that is measured by what we do or what we know.  Paul knew a ton and did a ton, and I hope we will know a ton and do a ton.

But maturity in Christ is measured by the tremendous faith it takes to believe just how powerful Jesus’ work is.  Maturity means continually applying Jesus’ life, death, resurrection, and continual intercession on our behalf to our sins.  Maturity means offering all of that to those who so desperately need it.

And then, all manner of Biblical and theological knowledge will be gifts from God where we learn about and apply the precious work of Jesus to our lives.  Let’s pray that God makes that true for us at Evident Grace.

If you would like to join us, you can find directions to Liberty Lanes below.

Lose All Gain Christ

SpecialKAs we know Jesus intimately, as we know the power of His resurrection, as we know His suffering on our behalf, our hope and our faith is that we will ultimately follow Jesus in resurrection.  We will attain resurrection, a living hope.

This hope is the only thing that is going to enable us to consider everything we gain in this world as a loss so that we might gain Christ.  Seeing Christ and His love for us as so worthy in such a superior sense that what we want to gain in this world is not more comfort, more money, or more security.

No, what we want to gain is a deeper, more intimate knowledge of Jesus.  We want to gain the hope that comes with the power of His resurrection.  We want to gain a deeper understanding of Him by walking with Him through suffering.  And ultimately we will gain His presence in Heaven as we leave this world and are resurrected to be with Him.

The excerpt above is from this past week’s sermon at Evident Grace Fellowship where we explored how hope in Christ is so secure, God’s commands, and we can count on it.  The devotional pdf’s, kindle, and audio are up.

You can download the pdf’s for free at:

Philippians 1:1-8

Philippians 1:8-11

Philippians 1:12-14

Philippians 1:15-18

Philippians 1:19-21

Philippians 1:22-26

Philippians 1:27-30

Philippians 2:1-4

Philippians 2:5-11

Philippians 2:12-18

Philippians 2:19-30

Philippians 3:1-7

Philippians 3:7-11

And audio for Philippians 1:15-18 is here.

Audio for Philippians 1:19-21 is here.

Audio for Philippians 1:22-26 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:1-4 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:5-11 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:12-18 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:19-30 is here.

Audio for Philippians 3:1-7 is here.

Audio for Philippians 3:7-11 is here.

Also, we are making all of our devotional pdf’s available on Kindle as well.  Because these are available at places other than Amazon, we have to charge $.99 for these, but all proceeds go back to Evident Grace.  You can find our Kindle devotionals at:

Philippians 1:1-8

Philippians 1:8-11

Philippians 1:12-14

Philippians 1:15-18

Philippians 1:19-21

Philippians 1:22-26

Philippians 1:27-30

Philippians 2:1-4

Philippians 2:5-11

Philippians 2:12-18

Philippians 2:19-30

Philippians 3:1-7

Philippians 3:7-11

Thanks for taking the time to look over these with us.  Join the conversation either by worshiping with us on Sunday, getting together with us throughout the week, or discussing these online or at Facebook.

Thanks.

If you are interested in worshiping with Evident Grace, we meet each Sunday at 1030am at the comedy club above Liberty Lanes off of I-95 exit 126 in Spotsylvania, VA.

The Free and Terrifying Work of Jesus

terroGang, even as we grow in obedience, even as God transforms us and does amazing things in our lives, all that we are ever going possess that is worth having confidence in is Jesus.
It is a good time to remind us that Jesus says, So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. –John 8:36

Is that thought both terrifying and freeing?  Why is that thought freeing?  That thought is freeing because through Jesus we have everything with we will ever need to trust.

Primarily, we can trust in a secure and loving relationship with God because of all that Jesus has done on our behalf.  Why is that thought terrifying?

That is terrifying because apart from Jesus we have absolutely nothing with which we can ever totally trust.
We can’t trust our talents because they can be taken away.
We can’t trust our possessions and money because it can be gone in a minute.
We can’t trust even the best of relationships because they are fragile and not eternal.
We can’t trust our obedience because even when we do obey, we don’t always have perfect motives and the goal of glorifying God and denying ourselves.

But when we trust the free work of Christ that secures our peaceful and joyful relationship with Christ, then we can do several things.
We can enjoy our talents because Jesus redeems them as we use them to glorify God.
We can enjoy our possessions and our money because Jesus redeems them as we use them to glorify God.
We can enjoy our relationships because Jesus redeems them as we use them to glorify God.
We can enjoy our obedience because Jesus redeems them as we use them to glorify God.

The excerpt above is from this past week’s sermon at Evident Grace Fellowship where we explored how hope in Christ is so secure, God’s commands, and we can count on it.  The devotional pdf’s, kindle, and audio are up.

You can download the pdf’s for free at:

Philippians 1:1-8

Philippians 1:8-11

Philippians 1:12-14

Philippians 1:15-18

Philippians 1:19-21

Philippians 1:22-26

Philippians 1:27-30

Philippians 2:1-4

Philippians 2:5-11

Philippians 2:12-18

Philippians 2:19-30

Philippians 3:1-7

And audio for Philippians 1:15-18 is here.

Audio for Philippians 1:19-21 is here.

Audio for Philippians 1:22-26 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:1-4 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:5-11 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:12-18 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:19-30 is here.

Audio for Philippians 3:1-7 is here.

Also, we are making all of our devotional pdf’s available on Kindle as well.  Because these are available at places other than Amazon, we have to charge $.99 for these, but all proceeds go back to Evident Grace.  You can find our Kindle devotionals at:

Philippians 1:1-8

Philippians 1:8-11

Philippians 1:12-14

Philippians 1:15-18

Philippians 1:19-21

Philippians 1:22-26

Philippians 1:27-30

Philippians 2:1-4

Philippians 2:5-11

Philippians 2:12-18

Philippians 2:19-30

Philippians 3:1-7

Thanks for taking the time to look over these with us.  Join the conversation either by worshiping with us on Sunday, getting together with us throughout the week, or discussing these online or at Facebook.

Thanks.

If you are interested in worshiping with Evident Grace, we meet each Sunday at 1030am at the comedy club above Liberty Lanes off of I-95 exit 126 in Spotsylvania, VA.

Serving in the Gospel Means Serving Together

serveWhen Timothy saw someone in need, he didn’t say, “Oh well, that’s what you get.”  He didn’t say, “Oh, that’s your fault.”  He didn’t say, “Well, someone else is going to have to take care of that.”  He saw others needs as his own and took their needs on himself just like Christ did.

And if that was impressive enough, listen to how Epaphroditus is described.  Paul says he is a fellow brother, a fellow worker, a fellow soldier even.  He was a messenger and minster to Paul’s needs, who was willing to serve Christ, His church, and Paul even to the point of death.

Gang, that’s serving in the Gospel.  I won’t tell you that people like this are common.  They aren’t.   That is why Paul says, “I have no one like him.”  But the fact that followers of Christ are rare like these dudes should make us weep.
They are rare, but they were only doing what each and every one of us is called to do.  They have picked up their cross, and they have died daily to follow Jesus Christ.

And each and every one of us is called to that same life of death to self, love to God, and service to others.  Those qualities, heck those churches, are pretty rare these days, but that doesn’t give us a pass.  That doesn’t give us an out to living a vibrant life of loving God with all of our heart, soul, and mind, and loving our neighbors as our self.

The excerpt above is from this past week’s sermon at Evident Grace Fellowship where we explored how hope in Christ is so secure, God’s commands, and we can count on it.  The devotional pdf’s, kindle, and audio are up.

You can download the pdf’s for free at:

Philippians 1:1-8

Philippians 1:8-11

Philippians 1:12-14

Philippians 1:15-18

Philippians 1:19-21

Philippians 1:22-26

Philippians 1:27-30

Philippians 2:1-4

Philippians 2:5-11

Philippians 2:12-18

Philippians 2:19-30

And audio for Philippians 1:15-18 is here.

Audio for Philippians 1:19-21 is here.

Audio for Philippians 1:22-26 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:1-4 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:5-11 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:12-18 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:19-30 is here.

Also, we are making all of our devotional pdf’s available on Kindle as well.  Because these are available at places other than Amazon, we have to charge $.99 for these, but all proceeds go back to Evident Grace.  You can find our Kindle devotionals at:

Philippians 1:1-8

Philippians 1:8-11

Philippians 1:12-14

Philippians 1:15-18

Philippians 1:19-21

Philippians 1:22-26

Philippians 1:27-30

Philippians 2:1-4

Philippians 2:5-11

Philippians 2:12-18

Philippians 2:19-30

Thanks for taking the time to look over these with us.  Join the conversation either by worshiping with us on Sunday, getting together with us throughout the week, or discussing these online or at Facebook.

Thanks.

If you are interested in worshiping with Evident Grace, we meet each Sunday at 1030am at the comedy club above Liberty Lanes off of I-95 exit 126 in Spotsylvania, VA.

God Takes Great Pleasure in Enabling Change in You.

change-sameYou can pray Philippians 2:13 as a personal prayer with great hope that God will answer it.

“Dear God of peace, thank you for raising Jesus from the dead so that He might shepherd and guide me.  And knowing that you brought Jesus back from the dead encourages me to pray that you are able to equip me with everything good so that I might do your will.  Please work within me whatever is pleasing in your sight through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever and ever.”

You can pray that knowing that God works in you and me to work and will whatever is pleasing to Him.  So right now, if you have grown tired in asking God to help repair a relationship, if you have given up on ever conquering a habitual sin, if you have given up on trying to read your bible, pray, share the Gospel or even just getting along with your friends, your spouse, or your kids, you can pray knowing God has promised to work and will in your life.

The excerpt above is from this past week’s sermon at Evident Grace Fellowship where we explored how hope in Christ is so secure, God’s commands, and we can count on it.  The devotional pdf’s, kindle, and audio are up.

You can download the pdf’s for free at:

Philippians 1:1-8

Philippians 1:8-11

Philippians 1:12-14

Philippians 1:15-18

Philippians 1:19-21

Philippians 1:22-26

Philippians 1:27-30

Philippians 2:1-4

Philippians 2:5-11

Philippians 2:12-18

And audio for Philippians 1:15-18 is here.

Audio for Philippians 1:19-21 is here.

Audio for Philippians 1:22-26 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:1-4 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:5-11 is here.

Audio for Philippians 2:12-18 is here.

Also, we are making all of our devotional pdf’s available on Kindle as well.  Because these are available at places other than Amazon, we have to charge $.99 for these, but all proceeds go back to Evident Grace.  You can find our Kindle devotionals at:

Philippians 1:1-8

Philippians 1:8-11

Philippians 1:12-14

Philippians 1:15-18

Philippians 1:19-21

Philippians 1:22-26

Philippians 1:27-30

Philippians 2:1-4

Philippians 2:5-11

Philippians 2:12-18

Thanks for taking the time to look over these with us.  Join the conversation either by worshiping with us on Sunday, getting together with us throughout the week, or discussing these online or at Facebook.

Thanks.

If you are interested in worshiping with Evident Grace, we meet each Sunday at 1030am at the comedy club above Liberty Lanes off of I-95 exit 126 in Spotsylvania, VA.