Sermon Archive


Vaccine Mandates and the Unity of the Church

(Apologies for the audio cutting off at the 43 minute mark. Please download the sermon manuscript if you want to read more.) On the 21st of October 2021 Jacinda Ardern announced that NZ will be moving away from the Alert Level system to the Traffic Light system. Some of the stated goals by the government are to update the countries response in light of a majority vaccinated population, and to limit lockdown situations to relevant areas and not make them country wide. Our message today is not going to focus on the political, medical or economic logic behind these...


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Luke 17:1-10: How the Gospel Shapes our Service of Others

The differences between true religion and false religion are striking. False religion is judgemental, true religion is accepting; false religion is strident and forceful, true religion is gentle and yielding; false religion is critical and harsh; true religion is gracious and encouraging; loveless vs loving; external holiness vs internal holiness; hypocritical vs genuine; we all know the difference between true and false religion. False religion is repulsive but true religion is attractive. Our hearts are by nature religious; that means we are vulnerable to the deceptions and promises of false religion and hungry for true religion. Jesus throughout the...


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The Moral Argument for God

Introduction: One of the most popular arguments against God is the problem of evil. We will be dealing with that later in the series. Today however we want to talk about an argument for God called the problem of good. The existence of morals and moral obligations points to a moral God who created us with this sense of obligation. Romans 2:14-16 gives us a record of this sense, ‘For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law....


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Romans 14:23: ‘For whatever does not proceed from faith is sin’

Introduction: When I say the words ‘living by faith’ what comes to mind? What immediately comes to my mind is George Muller. He was a Calvinistic Baptist who lived in the 1800s who is most famous for supporting orphanages through nothing but prayer. At the time he began his orphanage work only 3600 orphans were accommodated in all England, in his life time he supported just over 10000 orphans. He never asked anyone directly for money to support the orphans. On top of that he was convinced that he should not be supported by the church he was pastoring...


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Romans 14:20-23 – Faith and your conscience

Introduction:  ‘…the conscience functions as a spiritual nervous system, which uses guilt to inform us that something is wrong and needs correction. Failing to heed the warnings of conscience can lead only to the hardening or searing of the conscience, which in the end will bring us to destruction.’  We have done a great injustice to the conscience in our day and silence it more often than heed it.  We do not appreciate this wonderful gift of God which often stands outside of us as it were to disagree with us and condemn us when we are in sin. ...


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Romans 14:13-16: How to never be a stumbling block

Introduction: What do these three situations have in common: a pastor uses his hunting rifle to kill an abortion doctor; an Evangelist walks into a mosque and shouts out that Islam is idolatry; the parents of a teenager who has announced himself gay lose their tempers and verbally assault him calling a pervert and other things?  All three are right in a wrong way, all three have the truth but without love. Abortion is wrong, Islam is a false religion and homosexuality is a distortion of the way God made us, but we can be right in a wrong way. ...


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Romans 14:7-8: Belonging to God in life and death

Introduction: The portion in Romans that we are presently studying in confounding to the modern-minded person.  Paul is talking about accepting each other, not judging each other and the liberty that we ought to extend to each other, all of which are popular distinctives today.  The confounding part is where in the middle of a discussion about liberty, he talks about being slaves of Christ and everything we do either in life or death we are the Lord’s.  Romans 14:7-8, ‘For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself.  For if we live, we...


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Romans 14:6: Freedom and Worship

Introduction: Whenever we are critical of others we tend to demonise those to the left or right of us.  We are so assured of our own correctness that anyone who is different from us gets a severe verbal critique from us.  Think of some of the classic divides between Christians.  Calvinists have looked at their Arminian brethren and accused them of Pelagian idolatry; Arminians have looked at Reformed Christians and called them blasphemous fatalists.  Cessationists have looked at Charismatics and critiqued them as irreverent experience chasers, and Charismatics have labelled Cessationists as quenchers and blasphemers of the Spirit. Something...


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Romans 14:5-6: Liberty of Conscience

Introduction: When I say the words, ‘Liberty of Conscience’, what comes to mind?  I hope you have two distinct ideas in your minds, Christian Liberty, and then the world’s wrong definition of it.  Freedom of conscience is not the freedom to believe whatever I want or determine to be true, nor to sin in any way I please and you are not allowed to judge.  Today’s definition of freedom stands on very different foundations to the Christian one.  We believe that we are free by virtue of our humanity, being made in the image of God and our freedom...


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Romans 14:1-3: Gospel Based Community

Introduction: Welcoming people of differing convictions is a hot topic today.  Inclusivism is the politically correct thing to.  Divisions among Christians are a perennial problem and the new sub-section we are beginning in Romans speaks to these matters.  Paul has been talking to us about being living sacrifices as our response to God’s mercy to us in Christ.  He has covered several areas of ethics.  He has spoken about our minds, our attitudes, our body life and use of gifts, the love we ought to have to various parts of society, and our responsibility to the government.  Out of...


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Romans 13:5: Conscience

INTRODUCTION: Living by a conscience informed by the word of God before the face of God is the basic posture of Christian holiness. We know this well, here is the famous quote of Luther demonstrating this reality at the Diet of Worms when asked to recant of all his statements and writings before the Emperor: ‘Unless I am convinced by the testimony of the Scriptures or by clear reason (for I do not trust either in the pope or in councils alone, since it is well known that they have often erred and contradicted themselves), I am bound to...


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