Sunday April 19, 2020 Worship Service
Scripture Reading & Opening Prayer
This is the day that you have made, Lord.
Help us to rejoice in it, and be glad!
Remind us of the privileges as your people;
*to come to you in these moments
*to confess our sins
*to receive forgiveness and give it,
*to pray and sing and listen,
*to renew our fainting spirits,
*to rest in all your promises.
Open our eyes to see you, Lord.
Open our ears to hear your Word.
Visit us through your Holy Spirit
And help us to celebrate our faith. Amen.
I encourage you to listen to How Firm A Foundation before moving to the Sermon Video
Scripture Reading - 1 John 2:18-27
Dear children, this is the last hour; and as you have heard that the antichrist is coming,
even now many antichrists have come. This is how we know it is the last hour.
They went out from us, but they did not really belong to us. For if they had belonged to us,
they would have remained with us; but their going showed that none of them belonged to us.
But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and all of you know the truth.
I do not write to you because you do not know the truth, but because you do know it
and because no lie comes from the truth. Who is the liar?
It is the man who denies that Jesus is the Christ.
Such a man is the antichrist—he denies the Father and the Son.
No one who denies the Son has the Father; whoever acknowledges the Son has the Father also.
See that what you have heard from the beginning remains in you.
If it does, you also will remain in the Son and in the Father.
And this is what he promised us—even eternal life.
I am writing these things to you about those who are trying to lead you astray.
As for you, the anointing you received from him remains in you,
and you do not need anyone to teach you.
But as his anointing teaches you about all things and as that anointing is real,
not counterfeit—just as it has taught you, remain in him.
Abiding in the Word and the Spirit
1 John 2:24-27
Sunday April 19, 2020
As you examine our world today, and in the past, there is a continuous opposition to the truth of the Gospel.
We read the Gospel in the Word of God.
What do you find interesting about Paul’s warning to the Ephesian elders in Acts 20:28-30?
Acts 20:28–30 (NIV84)
28 Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood.
29 I know that after I leave, savage wolves will come in among you and will not spare the flock.
30 Even from your own number men will arise and distort the truth in order to draw away disciples after them.
Spiritually discerning believers need to abide in the Word of God and in the Spirit.
1) Let us continue to abide in the Word (1 John 2:24-26)
The believers had heard the teaching of the apostles from the beginning, especially regarding the core issue of the gospel.
1 John 1:1 (NIV84)
1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched—this we proclaim concerning the Word of life.
If you begin with the gospel, the sound doctrine and teaching of Jesus and the Apostles, why depart from those truths for some religious speculation?
1a) The Gospel comes through God’s Word.
The Gospel isn’t some philosophical or mystical revelation. The Gospel is the witness to Jesus Christ Himself.
Luke 24:44–45 (NIV84)
44 He said to them, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.”
45 Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures.
We need to be cautious today that we don’t deviate from the truth of the gospel which we read about in the Bible.
1b) The Gospel introduces us to a relationship with God through Jesus
The Gospel isn’t only a set of doctrine to agree upon, rather it involves a personal relationship with God.
John 17:3 (NIV84)
3 Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.
John 14:6 (NIV84)
6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
Illustration of the life of the Apostle Paul, formerly a devout Jew who kept all the rules and rituals, saved on the Damascus Road.
Philippians 3:8 (NIV84)
8 What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ
1c) The Gospel centers on the promise of eternal life.
1 John 2:25 (NIV84)
25And this is what he promised us—even eternal life.
The good news isn’t that God gave us a list of rules and rituals, but rather God Himself provided the means for us to have a relationship with Him. This relationship promises us eternal life with Him.
Why would we turn to anything else? What else is there to turn to?
1d) There is confusion about the Gospel today that is promoted by Satan.
1 John 2:26 (NIV84)
26 I am writing these things to you about those who are trying to lead you astray.
In 2 Timothy 3:10-15 what does Paul encourage Timothy to do in times of confusion about the Gospel?
If Satan can cause confusion about the gospel, then everything else is affected.
Application #1 – Never grow tired of the gospel!
There are depths in the Gospel that we will always need to comprehend.
Let us be a Gospel proclaiming church in our words, thoughts and actions. As it says above the doors as we leave the church building.
“Now . . . .go make a difference.”
Go and make a Gospel difference in our community.
Application #2 – Let the Word abide/remain in you!
“Be at home in the Word and let the Word be at home in you”
2) Let us continue to abide in the Spirit (1 John 2:27)
1 John 2:27 (NIV84)
27 As for you, the anointing you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about all things and as that anointing is real, not counterfeit—just as it has taught you, remain in him.
2a) John explains the reason they have remained in the truth.
2b) John comforts them in the face of heretical teaching.
2c) John warns them to keep being vigilant.
We can read the Word for ourselves and in dependence of the indwelling Holy Spirit to understand the things of God, especially with regards to the Gospel.
John 14:17 (NIV84)
17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.
John 14:26 (NIV84)
26 But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.
Application #1 – The Word and the Spirit always work together
Application #2 – The Spirit abides/remains in us, and we must abide/remain in the Spirit
Even during a pandemic, the enemy is actively spreading spiritual deception in the church.
Let us be careful what we see, what we hear, what we do, where we go and what we say.
To develop spiritual discernment let us remain in God’s Word and abide in the Spirit
Questions for discussion and reflection
Why is it vital to be discerning believers in our world today? How have you encountered and handled opposition to the truth of the Gospel in your life before?
Why is it important to link the Spirit with the Word?
Why is it a mistake not to seek commentaries and other study materials? Read 1 John 2:27.
How are you abiding/remaining in God’s Word?
How are you abiding/remaining in the Spirit?