Today we continued our series of sermons looking at Mark’s Gospel, and putting Jesus life and ministry under the microscope. Today we asked what it was that the disciples just could not understand about him. Today Nigel preached Mark 6:30-52 in a sermon entitled “‘How many loaves do you have?’: An impossible problem.”
In Sunday’s sermon, Nigel quoted the Puritan preacher, Richard Sibbes, who said this:
“Heaven is not heaven without Christ. It is better to be in any place with Christ than to be in heaven itself without him. All delicacies without Christ are but as a funeral banquet. Where the master of the feast is away, there is nothing but solemnness. What is all without Christ? I say the joys of heaven are not the joys of heaven without Christ; he is the very heaven of heaven.”
Nigel encouraged us to replace our fears with a bigger view of Jesus.
But this raises the question… how do I do that? How can I have a bigger view of Jesus?
There’s no easy answer. But one very important part of it is to think about Jesus. To fill our minds with who He is and what He’s done for us. Not to simply skim over the gospel in a yeah-yeah-we-all-know-that sort of way. But to linger over it and consider Jesus more deeply.
How often do we skip to the part where we’re told what to do rather than simply dwell on the person of Jesus? How regularly do we have conversations where we discuss Christ and delight in Him together?
To help us do that, watch the following video. It’s just under 20 minutes long, so why not set some time aside this week to listen to it. It’s John Piper passionately speaking about the supremacy of Christ, set to music. Listing many many things about Jesus to raise our estimations of this God we love. I found it very moving and it drew me to worship Jesus even more. I recommend it to you.
“We were made to know this massive Christ!”
Oh that we’d think about Jesus this way, so that we’d love and fear Him above all!
Today we continued our series of sermons looking at some Big Questions in Mark’s Gospel. In today’s passage, Jesus shows in hopeless situations, he is powerful to save. During our service this morning Nigel preached Mark 5:21-45.
At Emmanuel we believe that God speaks to us through His Word, the Bible. And that as He speaks to us, by His Spirit, He changes our hearts to love and trust Him more and long to serve Him. This Sunday we’ll be learning a new song which is a prayer that this would happen.
As a preacher and one of the leaders here, this is the kind of thing I pray for us every week.
We don’t just want to receive some good advice but be delighted with the good news.
We don’t want to be simply told what to do but revel in what Jesus has done and let that motivate us to obedience.
We don’t want to merely fill our brains with more trivia about God but to have His light shine in our minds to know Him better and be guided by Him.
Why not listen to the song below and make it your prayer that as we gather together around the Word, God would magnify Jesus and renew our faith in Him.
As we gather, come and teach us
Spirit, come and speak today
You delight to lead and guide us
It’s Your Word that lights the way
So come awaken our hearts
Illumine our minds, magnify Jesus Christ
Come, renewing our faith
Changing our lives
With Your words of life
Let Your truth sink deep within us
Let the foolish learn Your ways
We are often to prone to wander
As we hear may we be changed
We need to see You, we need to hear You
We want to know You, Word of life
Music and words by Pat and Joel Sczebel
© 2011 Sovereign Grace Worship (ASCAP)
Today we continued our series of sermons looking at some Big Questions in Mark’s Gospel. In today’s passage, Jesus tells the storm to stop, as he is asked, ‘Don’t you care if we drown?’ During our service this morning Nathan preached Mark 4:35-41.
Sermon Snippets’ is an occasional series, taking bitesize chunks from our Sunday sermons. The following excerpt is adapted from a sermon on Mark 2:1-12, preached by Nigel Styles last Sunday. You can listen to the whole sermon here.
In our house, we often have problems with mice. When we come across the nibbled carrot in the veg box or we find some mice droppings behind the chair… what should we do?
We could sweep up the mice droppings. Yes, that would be a good idea. We should throw away the nibbled veg. Definitely!
But even if I clear up the evidence of mice every day, it’s of limited value. I need to take more drastic action. I need to get out our mouse traps, pull back the spring, set an appetising sultana in place, and wait for the ‘thwatch’!!!
In the Garden of Eden, before Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit, no one got ill. There were no wheelchairs, or cancer wards or Get Well Soon cards. But then the world went horribly wrong.
Jesus could have come along and swept up the droppings. A leper cleansed here. A paralytic raised up there.
But when he forgives this man’s sins in Mark chapter 2, he is saying that he has come to deal not only with the symptoms of a broken world, but with the thing that broke it in first place. He has come to deal with sin because that is the root cause.
When he says ‘your sins are forgiven’, like a guided missile locked onto its target, Jesus attacks the thing that really needs to be dealt with.
Jesus is saying that we need to look no further than inside ourselves. That is real problem.
I am in the wrong. And not just me, but all of us. Everybody is like this. Everybody has sins that need to be forgiven. That’s where the problems of the world begin.
Today we continued our new series of sermons looking at some Big Questions in Mark’s Gospel. In today’s passage, Jesus tackles the biggest problem in the world as onlookers ask him, ‘Who can forgive sins but God alone?’ During our service this morning Nigel preached Mark 2:1-12.
Sermon Snippets’ is an occasional series, taking bitesize chunks from our Sunday sermons. The following excerpt is adapted from a sermon on Mark 1:14-34, preached by Nathan Burley last Sunday. You can listen to the whole sermon here.
Jesus went into town and taught in the synagogue. If Jesus came to your church, He’s preaching!
What He’s preaching is probably “the time is fulfilled, the kingdom of God is at hand, repent and believe in the gospel.” (v15)
But Mark draws attention here to how Jesus teaches; with authority.
His hearers were astonished. “they were astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one who had authority, and not as the scribes.” (v22) It was unlike anything they’d ever heard.
Jesus didn’t need to refer to commentaries or give tentative interpretations of the Bible. “I think it might mean this or that…” He spoke with authority.
I know I’m the wrong age and the wrong gender to be its target audience, but this week I finished reading the final book in The Hunger Games trilogy. I actually really enjoyed it.
Now imagine I was at a book group and one person says, “I think the series is a social commentary on the dangers of reality television.”
And someone else says, “It’s more historical than that, asking what the Roman Empire would have looked like in the 21st Century.”
I pipe up with something about it being, “A critique of capitalism on the one hand and then, in the final book, also critiquing communism on the other.”
Someone else says, “Come on, it’s just a good page-turner with a love triangle and plenty of fighting!”
And then, lo and behold, Suzanne Collins walks in. The writer of The Hunger Games.
If she weighs into the discussion, it’s not a debate anymore. She can tell you what it’s about.
In the same way, when Jesus picks up a Bible and teaches, He has authority because He is the author.
Other people say, “according to so-and-so…” Jesus says, “But I say to you…”
And if v15 is what He taught, then He’s more than the author, He’s the main character! He’s the promised king the whole Bible is about!
We preach the Bible saying, “Look at Jesus.” Jesus preaches the Bible saying, “Yes, look at me!”
He teaches with authority.
Today we began our new series of sermons looking at some Big Questions in Mark’s Gospel. As an unclean spirit asks Jesus ‘have you come to destroy us?’, we are spectators to one almighty clash of kingdoms. During our service this morning Nathan preached Mark 1:14-34.
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