Check your motives

"Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves." Philippians 2:3Stop. Whatever you are doing right now, just stop. I know you are probably busy but you can spare five minutes can't you?  Ask God the following question "am I doing anything out of rivalry or concept? Please show me."What about that promotion you applied for at work?  Are you thinking of the good of the company? Do you honestly feel you can contribute at that level? Or are y … [Read more...]

Gratitude vs Greed

My friend Jamie Munson over at Resurgence has posted an excellent article on the difference between two controlling motives in our lives. I wanted to share his table with you here, and encourage you to go read the whole post.GratitudeGreedAttitudeHumility (Phil. 2:3)Grumbling (Phil. 2:15)PerspectiveGrace: “I am a sinner who deserves death but Jesus paid the price andgave me his perfect righteousness.”Entitlement: “I am a good person who deserves heaven—plus a com … [Read more...]

Conclusion of the Barnabas serialization

One aspect that we haven’t talked much about is this: Barnabas may well have single-handedly prevented a damaging split in the early church between Antioch and Jerusalem. If you go back and read it, you will see that he was the ‘go-between’ for Peter and Paul-between Antioch and Jerusalem. It wasn’t always easy in that relationship but Barnabas had a foot in both camps. He was a blessing and was described as the ‘chief-mediator’ between those two great centers of the early church by one com … [Read more...]

Barnabas Part Five – Mistakes turned round for good

Barnabas is an encouragement to us in another way: Like so many heroes of the Bible, he wasn’t perfect. Don’t you find that encouraging? God is in the business of using servants who are not perfect, people who blow it, people who make mistakes. Maybe you’re sitting here this morning and you’ve mentally disqualified yourself from being used by God because of mistakes you’ve made in the past, sins you’ve committed in the past. I want to say to you, “There’s another chance for you!” We see in Galati … [Read more...]

Barnabas Part Four– Receiving prophetic encouragement that propels

The Gift of Encouragement from Jubilee Church on Vimeo.In Acts 13 Barnabas himself was encouraged by others. Remember the purpose of prophecy is encouragement. Remember when we say encouragement, we’re not just talking about a warm fuzzy feeling. We’re talking about sometimes being thrust out, our passage begins "and in the church of Antioch, there were prophets and teachers." (Barnabas is at the lead of this list, he seems to be the church leader there.) “Barnabas, Simeon, who was called Nig … [Read more...]

Barnabas Part Three – Encouraging a baby church and an emerging leader

Very soon, Barnabas’ encouragement finds another outlet, another opportunity. We see, in Acts 11, that Barnabas begins to encourage a baby church. A few people don’t wait for the apostles to send them or tell them what to do, they run because of persecution and when they arrive in Antioch they begin to share the Gospel. They don’t wait for headquarters to instruct them, they get on with it. Then, in verse 22 the apostles hear of what’s been happening, people are becoming Christians and a church i … [Read more...]

Barnabas: The Prophetic Gift of Encouragement Part Two

 Downloads: HiDef.  LowDef , DVD Quality or AudioHere is the continuation of an edited transcript of the above sermon which began yesterday:Who did Barnabas Encourage?First of all, and it may seem like a slightly funny place to start, he encouraged his leaders. Have you ever thought about that, that leaders need encouragement too? I know one or two of you are sitting here this morning thinking: “I want to be a leader?” Are you so sure? Leadership can be a real challenge. … [Read more...]

Barnabas: The Prophetic Gift of Encouragement Part One

I have not forgotten my series on Feelings and Faith and will be returning to it shortly. But in the meantime, I want to share with you a sermon I preached over the summer. Video is available to watch online here or you can download both video and audio.  But thanks to the work of Kristen Keating I can share an edited transcript with you over the next few days  http://kekeating.wordpress.com/This sermon is one that meant a lot to me, and to a number of listeners. It addresses a very i … [Read more...]

Rick Warren at Desiring God 2010 – The Battle for your mind

Rick Warren's talk at the Desiring God 2010 National Conference Think: The Life of the Mind and the Love of God conference follows below. Not surprisingly in some reformed circles online the recriminations continue. People wonder why Piper would invite Warren. But I very much enjoyed this talk. Warren is no lightweight. It is easy to dismiss his talks as lacking theological substance, but to those who's ears are open, they will realize there is much depth to them. He has the skill, often spoken … [Read more...]

Boys lacking men to inspire them to mature

Every now and then you read an article that says it right. This Guardian article is one such article and describes boys as follows: "A lazy youth becomes a burden to those parents, whom he ought to comfort, if not support. But you can no more rouse them, with all of their fine arguments, than you can a log. There they lie, completely enchained by indolence… Business tires him; reading fatigues him; the public service interferes with his pleasures. Ask him what he has done with his morning – he … [Read more...]


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