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"Amillennialism 101" -- Audio and On-Line Resources

 

Living in Light of Two Ages

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Thursday
Apr252019

Apologetics in a Post Christian Age (Audio) -- Making the Case for Christianity (The Resurrection of Jesus -- Part Two)

Here's the audio from the Wednesday night Bible Study:  Making the Case for Christianity: The Resurrection of Jesus Christ--Part Two

Tuesday
Apr232019

"I Shall Restore the Fortunes of My People Israel" -- Amos 7:1-9:15

Sermons on the Minor Prophet:  The Book of Amos (5)

About the year 760 B.C., YHWH sent the Prophet Amos to Israel (the Northern Kingdom).  Amos’ mission was to announce that YHWH’s covenant lawsuit was being served upon his disobedient and unfaithful covenant-breaking people who had separated from Judah (the Southern Kingdom) in a bloody civil war about two hundred years previously.  In the first six chapters of the Book of Amos, the prophet proclaimed YHWH’s solemn words to Israel in series of oracles of lament and warnings of impending judgment.  Amos’ message–God’s judgment was coming upon Israel, soon, within a generation.  Amos’ message is stark and jolting.  But as we will discover in our text (vv. 11-15 of chapter 9), Amos’ prophecy does not conclude with an announcement of a final covenant curse.  Instead, despite the immediate judgment to come upon Israel, Amos’ prophecy ends with YHWH’s gracious promise of future restoration of Israel, a restoration tied to a coming messianic age when God’s promise to renew his people extends beyond the borders of Israel to the ends of the earth.
 
We will wrap up our time in the Book of Amos–next time we will take up the Book of Jonah.  After a bit of brief review, we will survey the five visions recorded by Amos (in chapters 7-9), before turning to the concluding words of covenant blessing (vv. 9-15 of chapter 9)–a somewhat remarkable and hopeful ending to a book which is characterized by oracles of judgment, woe, lament, warning, and threats of covenant curse.

Recall, that in the first two oracles recorded in his prophecy (chapters 1-2), Amos’ words are intended to shock Israel to attention–like a bucket of cold water to the face.  Although the kings and priests of Israel foolishly expected God’s judgment be unleashed upon Israel’s pagan neighbors–thereby vindicating Israel as a break-away kingdom from Judah even in the midst of the nation’s current apostasy from YHWH’s covenant–the opposite was in fact the case.  Yes, God’s judgment was coming upon the Gentile nations because of their persecution of God’s people.  But God’s judgment was to fall on Israel first because, as Amos reminds Israel, judgment begins in the house of the Lord.  For six hundred years, Israel continuously and willfully broke the terms of their covenant with YHWH.  The warning that YHWH’s patience had run out should not come a surprise.  That it did, demonstrates how far Israel has fallen.

In chapters 3-4, we saw that Amos was sent to Israel at a time of relative peace, economic prosperity, and what seemed to be religious devotion.  But the reality was that the apparent peace, prosperity, and piety hid Israel’ self-righteous indifference to the things of the Lord.  Within a generation (in 722 B.C.), Israel’s peace would come to a crashing halt–as the nation was soon to fall to the Assyrian empire from the North.  Whatever economic prosperity the nation was experiencing in the days of Amos, came about because the rich (both the royal house and the land-owners) exploited the poor.  YHWH sent material blessing upon this people–but it never “trickled down” to those in deepest need.  During this time of prosperity, the royal house and estate owners acquired much property and fine luxury goods, but the people whose labor brought about such wealth were struggling to survive.  Even worse, Amos reports, those exploited were enslaved (through debt) and even mocked by those whom they served.  

As for the nation’s spiritual heath–things were no better, perhaps much worse.  Sacrifices were being offered at the various religious shrines (Bethel, Gilgal), but by priests appointed by the king, not those who were Levites.  As we saw in the oracle of woe in Amos 5:18-6:14, YHWH would not accept these sacrifices.  He hated them.  They did not turn aside YHWH’s righteous anger toward the people’s sin.  In offering sacrifices in such an illegitimate way and for all the wrong reasons, the sacrifices only increased the people’s guilt.  The worship of YHWH was conducted, but worship of Baal was not forbidden.  The people were going through the rituals commanded of them with their hearts far from YHWH–perhaps even inclined to the Canaanite gods.  Such religious hypocrisy increased the people’s guilt.  YHWH ceased listening to their songs and ceremonies.

To read the rest of this sermon:  Click Here

Monday
Apr222019

This Week at Christ Reformed Church (April 22-28)

Sunday Morning, April 28:  Rev. Brad Lenzner will be preaching.  Our worship service begins at 10:30 a.m.

Sunday Afternoon:  Mr. Yi Wang, our pastoral intern will be conducting the catechism service.  Our afternoon service begins at 1:15 p.m.

Wednesday Night Bible Study: (April 24 @ 7:30 p.m.).  As we make the case for Christianity, we continue to discuss the nature of Jesus' bodily resurrection.

Friday Night Academy:  No Academy this week

For more information on Christ Reformed Church you can always find us here Christ Reformed Church, or Christ Reformed on Facebook.

Monday
Apr152019

Easter Week Services at Christ Reformed Church -- Updated With Audio

Easter Week Services:

Audio from Maundy Thursday, April 18

 

Audio from Good Friday, April 19

I Will Remember No More


Audio from Easter Sunday, April 21 

Sunday
Apr142019

"The Law Is Good, If One Uses It Lawfully" -- 1 Timothy 1:3-11

Here's the audio from this morning's sermon on 1 Timothy 1:3-11 -- The Law Is Good, If One uses It Lawfully

Saturday
Apr132019

Apologetics in a Post Christian Age (Audio) -- Making the Case for Christianity (The Resurrection of Jesus -- Part One)

Here's the audio from the Wednesday night Bible Study:  Making the Case for Christianity -- The Resurrection of Jesus (Part One)

Thursday
Apr112019

"The Day of the Lord" -- Amos 5:1-6:14

Sermons on the Minor Prophets:  The Book of Amos (4)

Friedrich Nietzsche, the nineteenth century German philosopher, is perhaps best known for his assertion that “God is dead.”  A very formidable critic of Christianity, Nietzsche spoke of Christianity as a religion possessing what he called a “slave mentality,” one symptom of which was the putting off of a final judgment until the end of time.  This encouraged people to avoid acting authentically in the present.  People should not wait for an imaginary God to act, they must decisively act now, freed from religious superstitions.  Nietzsche thought Christians foolish (and to be pitied) because advances in science and European culture had rendered the Judeo-Christian God an unworthy explanation of the universe–“God is dead,” a view which many of our contemporaries accept, if only in a practical way.  But a Hebrew Prophet named Amos once proclaimed the very doctrine Nietzsche railed against, the true and living God (transcendent and altogether righteous) enters human history at times to bring about his sovereign judgments upon his disobedient people and neighboring Gentile nations–that which the prophets describe as “the Day of the Lord.”  We come face to face with the God of the Bible who is very much alive, whether Nietzsche and his followers like him or not.

The “Day of the Lord” is an important theological concept central to the Christian doctrine of a final judgment.  Amos, writing about 760 B.C., is the first of the Minor Prophets to call attention to the “Day of the Lord,” but this is a concept found throughout the Minor Prophets, with the exception of the prophet Jonah.  When used by Old Testament writers, the term “Day of the Lord” refers those times (often in both the immediate and at the same time distant future) when God decisively intervenes in human history to bring about his righteous judgment upon his people Israel, and then upon Judah, because of their prolonged disobedience and indifference to YHWH’s covenant, their religious hypocrisy and their idolatry.  The phrase is also used in connection with God’s judgment upon the Gentile nations which have persecuted God’s people (at times as agents of God’s judgment upon Israel) and who reject God’s own anointed king who comes from the biological line of David–the coming Messiah (Jesus).  In these instances, the Day of the Lord points ahead to that future time when God will save a believing remnant of his people Israel, through the same Messiah who, ironically, Israel will reject.  The Day of the Lord then can be seen as YHWH meting out covenant curses, and dispensing covenant blessings.

As used throughout the New Testament, the Day of the Lord refers to that final day of human history (judgment day), when Jesus Christ returns to raise the dead, judge the world, and make all things new.  It will be a time of cosmic distress when all of creation convulses, and when all men and women will be judged according to what they have done (good or ill).  On that day, the Lord will purge away every hint and trace of human sin, creating a new heaven and earth (as we read in 2 Peter 3:10-13–our New Testament lesson), which will be the home of everlasting righteousness, all traces of human sin now removed.

These repeated acts of God in judgment upon his disobedient people and the Gentile nations spoken of throughout the prophets, function as dress rehearsals for that day when Jesus returns at the end of the age.  As used throughout the prophets, the Day of the Lord both foreshadows and forewarns God’s people of his righteous judgments upon human sin, the consequences of disobedience to his commandments, and the eternal danger of rejecting his saving mercy both in this life and in the next.  At the same time, the Day of the Lord provides an illustration of God’s covenant promise to preserve his people and deliver them from sin and death.  Those who know Jesus as their Savior long for his coming–the return of our great God and Savior to usher in our promised inheritance–the resurrection of our bodies and entrance into eternal life.

To read the rest of this sermon:  Click Here

Monday
Apr082019

This Week at Christ Reformed Church (April 8-14)

Sunday Morning, April 14 (Palm Sunday):  We have begun a new series on Paul's letters to Timothy and Titus.  This week, we will look at Paul's discussion of God's Law from 1 Timothy 1:3-11.  Our worship service begins at 10:30 a.m.

Sunday Afternoon:  We considering Lord's Day 4 in our study of the Heidelberg Catechism (Q & A 9-11).  What do we mean when we say, "God is merciful?"  Our afternoon service begins at 1:15 p.m.

Wednesday Night Bible Study: (April 10 @ 7:30 p.m.).  As we make the case for Christianity, we will take up the nature of Jesus' bodily resurrection.

Friday Night Academy: (Friday, April 12 @ 7:30 p.m.).  We are discussing Michael Horton's theology text, The Christian Faith.  We are now in chapter twelve, "Being Human," and talking about the Imago Dei (p. 398).

For more information on Christ Reformed Church you can always find us here Christ Reformed Church, or Christ Reformed on Facebook.

Sunday
Apr072019

"Paul, An Apostle of Christ Jesus" -- 1 Timothy 1:1-2

Here's the audio from this morning's sermon on 1 Timothy:   Paul, An Apostle of Christ Jesus

Thursday
Apr042019

Apologetics in a Post Christian Age (Audio) -- Making the Case for Christianity (Jesus' Self-Attestation)

Here's the audio from the Wednesday night Bible Study: Making the Case for Christianity -- Jesus' Self-Attestation


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