Latest Teaching Series
The Journey of Discipleship – Geoff Andrews
The real Jesus often gets lost in the minutiae of church life. In this series, using some of the themes from Nicky Gumbel’s book Questions of Life, Geoff looks at who Jesus is, why Jesus died, and what it means to have faith. The series is aimed at both Christians and those searching for God. As Christians, we are called to be a blessing to the town in which we live; to do that we need to have a faith with strong foundations, rooted in truth. As searchers, we are looking for answers to questions; we are looking for truth. The Christian faith must be underpinned by a clear understanding of the profound mystery of Jesus.
Geoff looks at the death of Jesus through four pictures – the sacrificial system of the old testament temple, the slavery of debt, the justice of the law court, the restoration of the prodigal returning home.
Why did Jesus die? Because of my sin. Because God loves me and wants to be in relationship with me.
Geoff looks at some of the barriers to finding faith: The church itself, its history and culture; intellectual arguments; and the moral challenges of following Jesus.
What does it mean to become a Christian? To accept the evidence, change direction, commit to Jesus, receive the Spirit, and live out the life of Jesus in our community. How does this challenge us as Christians? To actively renew our commitment, and remove the barriers that we put up to stop others finding faith.
Discipleship – Jim Collins
This sermon links the Christian life with the discipline and training an athlete has to put in,to run their race. It looks at the importance of ‘throwing off every sin that entangles’ – and how obstacles and hurdles can be overcome in the race of life. It is vital to’ keep focus – with our eyes on Jesus’ – running with a ‘winner mindset.’ The message concludes with the call to ‘pass on the baton’ of the gospel of The Good News of Jesus Christ.
The Cross of Christ – Colossians 1:15-23
This message commences with looking at the ‘offence of the Cross’ in the 21st century – and covers what the death of Jesus on the cross has accomplished for us. The message of the Cross – must be preached! Only at the Cross of Christ can we find forgiveness for our sinfulness and enter into reconciliation with God and one another. We look at the ‘finished work’ of the Cross of Christ – as we consider Salvation, wholeness and healing.
The Grove of Goodness – Galations 5:13-26 & 6:1-10
Discipleship is a daily journey – and this message takes us on a walk down the ‘Grove of Goodness.’ It starts by looking at the ‘Goodness of God’ – and every good thing we have ‘in Christ.’ The sermon looks at aspects in our lives where goodness is evident – as we carry each others burdens, test our own actions and do not become weary in doing good. The challenge is to ‘sow these good seeds’ into the lives of people we meet day by day.
The Route of Integrity
In this sermon, we define ‘Integrity’ ( honesty, sincerity, fairness,doing the right thing …) From scripture we discover that walking the ‘Route of integrity’ enables us to walk securely, will guide us and bring us joy and blessing. The message goes on to explain how Integrity is evident in the aspects of personal accountability, responsibility and reliability – in our relationship with God and one another. We look at practical steps of ‘how we can build principles of integrity into our daily living’ and conclude with the important issue of ‘integrity and confidentiality’.
What will you do with what you’ve got? – Matthew 25:14-30 – The Parable of the talents
In this sermon we look at the need to be ‘productive and working’ for the Lord as we wait for His return. We need to ask the question, “Are we afraid of someone or something that is preventing us from using our talents?”The Lord grants opportunities for service in keeping with our ability to make use of them. We have different gifts according to the grace given us. The sermon concludes by looking at the aspect of ‘discovering ‘hidden talents.’
What it is to be a Disciple of Jesus – Geoff Andrews
Setting the scene: the beginning of the good news; a royal pronouncement. Good news for individuals: You are part of God’s life-changing plan; you have value and worth; you matter; you are not second class. Good news for communities: We are here to bless the community; we are here to bring salvation to our community. Working with God to achieve His purposes: God works to his agenda not ours, we need to trust Him; what is God doing in Brixham of which we need to be part? Jesus is the centre of the outworking of God’s purposes. Jesus came to do battle with the evil one. We know temptation: Jesus knew temptation also; God “gets” it. Jesus won that battle: we can do so too as disciples of Jesus, filled with the Holy Spirit.
Invitation goes hand in hand with challenge (see part 3). If we come to church just to feel good we will be disappointed; if we emphasis the challenges and forget the invitation to life then we become legalistic. Jesus makes an open invitation to all of us to be disciples: Zaccheus is an unlikely candidate; we know ourselves to be people who have messed up but God still invites us. We need to respond: Zaccheus responds. Some people are not interested in responding and we must respect that. God was working in Zaccheus; we need to learn to recognise when God is working in someone’s life and give the invitation from Jesus. Salvation is not an insurance policy, it is a present reality. Spending time with Jesus changes people. Salvation comes to people when they turn and repent, salvation is eternal life that starts now. It is a gift for today, it is a dynamic relationship with God. When we turn to God we are changed – it gives us a new perspective on life with Him in the centre. Seeking and saving the lost: How many people in our town really know that they need Jesus? God hasn’t finished with us either. We journey together into salvation.
The challenge goes hand in hand with the invitation. Discipleship is not just to make people feel better, there is a challenge with the invitation. There is a cost to discipleship: we don’t get wrapped in cotton wool – life still happens, bad stuff still happens, God doesn’t remove us from the difficulties of life. At the heart of our faith is a crucified saviour that invites us to live life with Him. We are not immune from trouble but in the heart of trouble we find strength to carry on. Accepting the invitation to follow Jesus brings with it a sense of the presence of God, however it also confronts us with a different value system. Being a disciple means saying ‘no’ to what the bible calls our sinful nature, saying ‘no’ to ourself. Saying ‘no’ to selfishness: we are called to live in good relationship – don’t ask “what’s good for me?”, ask “what’s good for the person next to me?”. Unity blesses the whole community. Saying “yes” to God: Discipleship is an intentional pursuit, we make a choice to follow Jesus every morning. We need one another to take discipleship seriously, we need accountability and encouragement. We lose life in order to gain it.
Three aspects of discipleship: 1 – Our relationship with God
There should be a three equal sides of our relationships: Our relationship with God, with each other, and with the community. This ‘triangle’ should be equal sided otherwise problems occur. Firstly looking at our relationship with God; staying close to God, bearing fruit, having joy; being shaped by God’s words; and living in obedience to God. Where are you in your relationship with God today?
Three aspects of discipleship: 2 – Our relationship with each other
There should be a three equal sides of our relationships: Our relationship with God, with each other, and with the community. This ‘triangle’ should be equal sided otherwise problems occur. Secondly looking at our relationship with each other; how important this is, how challenging, how we are not unique and that all organisations struggle with relationships, but how we are called to be different and to work things out by God’s grace. Six areas of biblical teaching on relationships: The Holy Spirit – Acts Ch.2 & 6; Shared Purpose – Ephesians 4:1-7; Acceptance and Forgiveness – Romans 15:1-7, Colossians 3:13; Dealing with Problems – Matthew 18:15-17; Building Accountable Relationships – Hebrews 10:24 and 25; Prayer and Spiritual Warfare – Ephesians 4:26, 6:10.
Three aspects of discipleship: 3 – Our relationship with the community
We become distant from our community when all our life revolves around church, when we drive a wedge between our church life and our “ordinary” life. We need to recognize that we belong to a wider community; we have a role within the community as a church; we have a place within other community groups in the town; we live in various communities and are disciples in these. Sharing the Gospel: What does it mean to share the gospel? What about our personal witness? Courage and simplicity; being ready to speak, having something simple to say from the heart; using common sense – there are people whom you can share with and people who won’t listen; seeking God’s discernment; we don’t convert anybody – that is the work of the Holy Spirit. Who could you share your story with? What is your story?