Discouragement can take many different forms, but it always tends toward the same end of veiling the goodness of God from our eyes. In Psalm 42, we have the divinely-provided cure for discouragement through the experience and the inspired pen of David.
If you could sum up the Christian life, what would it look like? The Apostle Paul, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, answers that question with a closing summary of his letter to Titus: believers are to be devoted to good works, God's word, and God's people.
These three words ring sweetly in the ears of those who have experienced this indescribable gift. But how are we saved? And what motivated God to save us? Meditating on the answers to these questions will make all the difference in how we work out what God has called us to do in response to His amazing grace.
Christians are often prone to see the unbelieving world as an oppressive adversary rather than a mission field. But when we remember that God saved us, not by any goodness of our own, but by His sovereign grace, we are motivated to be what He has called us to be in relation to them as we seek to win them to Christ.
God's grace transforms us into the likeness of Christ, and we are to work that transformation out in practical ways not only in the community of the church, but in the larger community of the world around us. Despite the authorities over us or the way we may be treated, we are to apply ourselves to showing all people the character of our Great God and Savior, Jesus Christ.
Salvation is a work of God's grace from start to finish. The gospel of God's grace-the good news that Jesus died for our sins and rose again-not only saves us from the penalty of sin, but removes the power of sin and trains us to be transformed into the likeness of Christ as we wait for the fullness of our transformation at His second coming when we will be finally freed from the presence of sin.
Each and every one of us has sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. There is none good, not even one. Even if we won't admit that there is a God to whom we are accountable, we can't escape His law that is written on our hearts and the conscience He placed within us that burdens us with the weight of the real guilt we carry. We are helpless to do anything about it, but the wonderful news of the gospel is that God has done what we could not. This is what Christians celebrate and commemorate on Good Friday.
Many who have reached the latter stage of life feel entitled to spiritual retirement, thinking that along with retirement from their occupation, their work for the Lord is done as well. Others feel the sting of a culture that increasingly prefers to discard the elderly, as if they have timed out in their usefulness. But God says older Christian men and women are treasure troves of truth and wisdom who are not only to continue their pursuit of godliness, but to intentionally invest themselves in the young.
[fusion_button link="https://firmfoundationpv.org/wp-content/uploads/sermons/2022/02/SG-2022.2.27-The-Power-of-a-Transformed-Church-Titus-2.1-15.pdf" target="_blank" link_attributes="" alignment_medium="" alignment_small="" alignment="" modal="" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" sticky_display="normal,sticky" class="" id="" color="default" button_gradient_top_color="" hue="" saturation="" lightness="" alpha="" button_gradient_bottom_color="" button_gradient_top_color_hover="" button_gradient_bottom_color_hover="" gradient_start_position="" gradient_end_position="" gradient_type="" radial_direction="" linear_angle="180" accent_color="" accent_hover_color="" type="" bevel_color="" bevel_color_hover="" border_top="" border_right="" border_bottom="" border_left="" border_radius_top_left="" border_radius_top_right="" border_radius_bottom_right="" border_radius_bottom_left="" border_color="" border_hover_color="" size="medium" padding_top="" padding_right="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" fusion_font_family_button_font="" fusion_font_variant_button_font="" font_size="" line_height="" letter_spacing="" text_transform="" stretch="default" margin_top="" margin_right="" margin_bottom="40px" margin_left="" icon="fa-file-pdf far" icon_position="left" icon_divider="no" animation_type="" animation_direction="left" animation_speed="0.3" animation_offset=""]Download Sermon Study Guide[/fusion_button] How Shall We Then Live? In the midst of a culture that is in rapid moral decline, Christians are tempted to embrace false ideologies under the guise of gospel terminology or to follow those who seek to rally believers in the pursuit of saving the culture through social and political activism. But the Apostle Paul, who served in a culture that was just as godless-even worse-instead called Christians to be zealous in helping one another to grow in Christlikeness in whatever stage or station of life they found themselves, and through this to shine the life-transforming light of the gospel into a dark and lost world.
[fusion_button link="https://firmfoundationpv.org/wp-content/uploads/sermons/2022/02/SG-2022.2.20-Silencing-the-Wolves.-Taking-False-Teachers-to-Task.pdf" target="_blank" link_attributes="" alignment_medium="" alignment_small="" alignment="" modal="" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" sticky_display="normal,sticky" class="" id="" color="default" button_gradient_top_color="" hue="" saturation="" lightness="" alpha="" button_gradient_bottom_color="" button_gradient_top_color_hover="" button_gradient_bottom_color_hover="" gradient_start_position="" gradient_end_position="" gradient_type="" radial_direction="" linear_angle="180" accent_color="" accent_hover_color="" type="" bevel_color="" bevel_color_hover="" border_top="" border_right="" border_bottom="" border_left="" border_radius_top_left="" border_radius_top_right="" border_radius_bottom_right="" border_radius_bottom_left="" border_color="" border_hover_color="" size="medium" padding_top="" padding_right="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" fusion_font_family_button_font="" fusion_font_variant_button_font="" font_size="" line_height="" letter_spacing="" text_transform="" stretch="default" margin_top="" margin_right="" margin_bottom="40px" margin_left="" icon="fa-file-pdf far" icon_position="left" icon_divider="no" animation_type="" animation_direction="left" animation_speed="0.3" animation_offset=""]Download Sermon Study Guide[/fusion_button] The Character of False Teachers False teachers are sometimes difficult to spot because they are subtle and deceptive. This is why our Lord Jesus called them wolves in sheep's clothing (Matt. 7:15). But elders and all believers alike must develop the discernment to identify them because their teaching is so destructive. The Apostle Paul describes some common characteristics of those who must be silenced.
[fusion_button link="https://firmfoundationpv.org/wp-content/uploads/sermons/2022/02/SG-2022.2.20-Silencing-the-Wolves.-Taking-False-Teachers-to-Task.pdf" target="_blank" link_attributes="" alignment_medium="" alignment_small="" alignment="" modal="" hide_on_mobile="small-visibility,medium-visibility,large-visibility" sticky_display="normal,sticky" class="" id="" color="default" button_gradient_top_color="" hue="" saturation="" lightness="" alpha="" button_gradient_bottom_color="" button_gradient_top_color_hover="" button_gradient_bottom_color_hover="" gradient_start_position="" gradient_end_position="" gradient_type="" radial_direction="" linear_angle="180" accent_color="" accent_hover_color="" type="" bevel_color="" bevel_color_hover="" border_top="" border_right="" border_bottom="" border_left="" border_radius_top_left="" border_radius_top_right="" border_radius_bottom_right="" border_radius_bottom_left="" border_color="" border_hover_color="" size="medium" padding_top="" padding_right="" padding_bottom="" padding_left="" fusion_font_family_button_font="" fusion_font_variant_button_font="" font_size="" line_height="" letter_spacing="" text_transform="" stretch="default" margin_top="" margin_right="" margin_bottom="40px" margin_left="" icon="fa-file-pdf far" icon_position="left" icon_divider="no" animation_type="" animation_direction="left" animation_speed="0.3" animation_offset=""]Download Sermon Study Guide[/fusion_button] The Character of False Teachers False teachers are sometimes difficult to spot because they are subtle and deceptive. This is why our Lord Jesus called them wolves in sheep's clothing (Matt. 7:15). But elders and all believers alike must develop the discernment to identify them because their teaching is so destructive. The Apostle Paul describes some common characteristics of those who must be silenced.
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