BLESSED To Be Strong In The Lord! * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 6:10 * 7/2/17

Ephesians 6:10 "Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power (in the strength of his power)"

1) Our nation is strong when we REMEMBER

  • Revelations 2:1-5 " To...the church in Ephesus: I know your deeds, your hard work and you perseverance. I know that you cannot tolerate wicked people, that you have tested those who claim to be apostles but are not, and have found them false. (3) You have persevered and have endured hardships for my name, and have not grown weary. (4) Yet I old this against you: You have forsaken the love you had at first. (5) Remember the height from which you have fallen!"
  • Psalm 77:11 "I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago"
  • Judges 2:10 "Another generation grew up who knew neither the Lord nor what he had done for Israel"
  • Psalm 145:4 "One generation commends your works to another; they tell of your mighty acts"

2) Our nation is strong when we REPENT

  • Revelations 2:5 "Repent and do the things you did at first, If you do not repent, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place"
  • 2 Chronicles 7:14 "If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land"
  • Nehemiah 1:6 "Hear the prayer your servant is praying before you day and night for your servants, the people of Israel. I confess the sins we Israelites, including myself and my father's family, have committed against you"

3) Our nation is strong when we RETURN

  • Revelations 2:5 "Do (return to) the things you did at first"
  • Psalm 33:12 "Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord"
  • Psalm 33:16-19 "No king is saved by the size of is army....But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love"
  • Genesis 13:3-4 "He returned (retraced) by the way he came, from the south to Bethel where he had first build an altar. There Abraham called on the name of the Lord"
  • Isaiah 44:22 "I have swept away your offenses like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist. Return to me, for I have redeemed you."
  • Jeremiah 24:7 "They will be my people, and I will be their God, for they will return to me with all their heart"

Dig Deeper: Read Ephesians 6:10

(1) How do you find strength? What miracles of God can you remember for Israel, for our nation, for your life?

(2) Of what should we repent for our nation?

(3) What in your life does God want you to return to?

BLESSED To Work For Jesus! * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 6:5-9 * 6/25/17

1.) My work is to trust in JESUS

  • John 6:27-39 "Do not work for food that spoils, but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you...Then they asked him, 'What must we do to do the works God requires?' Jesus answered, 'The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent'"
  • Matthew 11:28 "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened (you who carry heavy burdens) and I will give you rest
  • Hebrews 4:3 "We who have believed enter that rest"
  • Hebrews 4:10 "Anyone who enters God's rest also rests from their works"

2.) After I trust in the finished work of Jesus, I have a new WORK

  • Ephesians 2:10 "We are God's workmanship (masterpiece, work of art, poem), created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared...for us to do"
  • My work is whatever I do each day with the time God gives me!
  • 1 Peter 4:2 "They do not live the rest of their earthly lives for evil human desires, but rather for the will of God"
  • 2 Corinthians 5:15 "He died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again"

3.) Jesus gives me a new ATTITUDE

  • Philippians 2:5-7 "Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus, who...made himself nothing, taking the very nature (form) of a servant"
  • 1 Corinthians 7:21 "Were you a slave when you were called? Don't let it trouble you - although if you can gain your freedom, do so"
  • Ephesians 6:5 "Obey...just as you would obey Christ"
  • 1 Corinthians 10:31 "Whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God"
  • Ephesians 6:6 "Obey...doing the will of God from your heart"
  • Ephesians 6:7 "Serve wholeheartedly, as if you were serving the Lord, not men"
  • 2 Timothy 2:21 "Useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work"
  • Ephesians 6:8 "You know that the Lord will reward everyone for whatever good he does, whether he is slave or free"
  • Colossians 3:23-24 "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving"
  • Ephesians 6:9 "Masters, treat your slaves in the same way. Do not threaten them, since you know that he who is both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no favoritism with him"
  • Ruth 2:4 "Boaz...greeted the harvesters, 'The Lord be with you!' They answered him, 'The Lord bless you!"
  • Philemon 1:16 "No longer as a slave, but better than a slave, as a dear brother"

Dig Deeper:  Read Ephesians 6:5-9

(1) How do you find rest by working for Jesus?

(2) How are you working for Jesus now?

(3) How are we slaves for Jesus?

BLESSED To Have A Christian Home (part 2) * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 6:1-4 * 6/18/17

Last week: H.O.M.E. Honor others, Offer yourself, Make others shine, Each one love others with the love of Jesus (Ephesians 5:18 "Be filled with the Spirit)

1.) My home needs a firm FOUNDATION

  • 1 Corinthians 3:11 "No one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ" (Ephesians 2:20 "Jesus the cornerstone")
  • Ephesians 6:4 "Bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord"
  • Psalm 127:1 "Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labor in vain"
  • Luke 6:47 "Everyone who comes to me and hears my words and puts them into practice...is like a man building a house, who dug down deep and laid the foundation on rock. When a flood came, the torrent struck that house but could not shake it"
  • 2 Timothy 2:19 "God's solid foundation stands firm....Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness"

2) My home needs strong WALLS

  • 1 Corinthians 3:11,10 The foundation is Christ. "Each one must be careful how he builds on it" (2 Timothy 3:15-16 "The Holy Scriptures are able to make you wise")
  • Isaiah 58:12 "You will be called Repairer of Broken Walls"
  • Ephesians 6:1 "Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right"
  • Ephesians 6:2-3 "Honor your father and mother -- which is the first commandment with a promise -- that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on earth"
  • Deuteronomy 6:5-7 "Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength. These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up"

3) My home needs a protective ROOF

  • Genesis 19:8 " They have come under the protection of my roof"
  • Ephesians 6:4 "Fathers, do not exasperate (provoke to anger) your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord"
  • Galatians 5:15 "If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other"
  • Deuteronomy 23:14 "The Lord your God moves about in your camp to protect you and to deliver your enemies to you. Your camp must be holy, so that he will not see among you anything indecent and turn away from you"
  • 2 Thessalonians 3:3 "The Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one"

Dig Deeper: Read Ephesians 6:1-4

(1) Why do we need to dig deeply for our spiritual foundation? What storms has Christ enabled you to survive?

(2) How are you building on the foundation?

(3) What needs to change in your home life?

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BLESSED To Have A Christian Home (part 1) * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 5:21-33 * 6/11/17

-Psalm 68:6 "God sets the lonely (solitary, single) in families"                                                      

-Ephesians 2:19 "You are no longer strangers, but fellow citizens with God's people (the saints) and also members of this household (family)"

1) HONOR others                                                                                                                       

  • Ephesians 5:18 "Be filled with the Spirit"
  • Ephesians 5:21 "Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ"
  • Ephesians 5:22 "Wives, submit to your husbands as to the Lord"
  • Ephesians 5:24 "As the church submits to Christ"
  • 1 Peter 5:5 "You who are younger, submit yourself to your elders. All of you, clothe yourselves with humility towards one another"

2) OFFER yourself for others

  • Ephesians 5:18 "Be filled with the Spirit"
  • Ephesians 5:25 "Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy"
  • Ephesians 5:28-30 "Husbands ought to love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife, loves himself. No one ever hated his own body, but he feeds and cares for it, just as Christ does the church - for we are members of his body"
  • 1 Corinthians 7:14 "The unbelieving husband has been sanctified through his wife, and the unbelieving wife has been sanctified through her believing husband"
  • Ephesians 5:32 "This is a profound mystery; I am talking about Christ and the church"

3) MAKE others shine

  • Ephesians 5:18 "Be filled with the Spirit"
  • Ephesians 2:25-27 "Christ loved the church... cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless"
  • John 15:3 "You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you"
  • Ephesians 5:19 "Speak to one another with psalms"
  • Colossians 3:16 "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you speak to one another"
  • Philippians 2:3 "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit (trying to impress others), but in humility consider others more important than yourselves"
  • Revelation 19:7,8 " The wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear"

4) EACH one love others with the love of Jesus

  • Ephesians 5:18 " Be filled with the Spirit"
  • Romans 5:1 "God's love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us"
  • Ephesians 5:33 "Each one of you must also love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband"

Dig Deeper: Read Ephesians 5:21-33

(1) Describe a Christian home. How can we be more honoring? Who should we honor? (1 Peter 2:17).

(2) How can we offer ourselves for others?

(3) How can we help others shine?

(4) What is the key to loving others?

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BLESSED To Be Filled With The Spirit! * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 5:18-20 * 6/4/17

1. Spirit-filled living depends on what I'm DRINKING

  • Ephesians 5:18a "Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery (ruin)"
  • Isaiah 5:11 "Woe to those who rise early in the morning to run after their drinks, who stay up late at night 'till they are inflamed with wine"
  • Proverbs 20:1 "Wine is a mocker and beer (strong drink) a brawler (rage, fighting, loud, noisy, out-of-control behavior); whoever is led astray by them is not wise"
  • Ephesians 5:18b "Instead, be filled with the Spirit"
  • John 5:26 "When the helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father--the Spirit of truth who goes out from the Father--He will testify about me" (Acts 1:8)
  • John 16:13-14 "He (The Holy Spirit), will glorify me (Jesus)"
  • Acts 1:13-15; 2:1, 4 "Joined together in prayer...when the day of Pentecost came, they were all together...all of them (120) were filled with the Holy Spirit"
  • Ephesians 3:16 "I pray that..he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being"
  • Romans 8:6,9 "The mind controlled by the Spirit is life and peace...You are controlled not by the sinful nature, but by the Spirit"

2. Spirit-filled living keeps my heart SINGING

  • Ephesians 5:19 "Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord" (Listen to Christian music)
  • John 7:37-39 "Let anyone who is thirsty come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them. By this he meant the Spirit"
  • Psalm 40:3 "He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn (song) of praise to our God. Many will see...and put their trust in him"
  • Psalm 96:2 "Sing to the Lord, praise his name; proclaim his salvation day after day"

3. Spirit-filled living continues with my thanks GIVING

  • Ephesians 5:20 "Always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ"
  • "He (Jesus) gave thanks"/Matthew 15:36; Matthew 26:27; 1 Corinthians 11:22-23; John 11:14
  • 1 Thessalonians 5:16-19 "Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. Do not quench the Spirit"

Dig Deeper:

Read Ephesians 5:18-20

(1) What do people thirst for? How do people try to satisfy their inner thirst? How do we drink of the Spirit? How would you describe a Spirit-filled Christian?

(2) How does singing and worship help you?

(3) Why is giving thanks so important? What helps you stay filled with the Holy Spirit? Pray Ephesians 3:16 for our church!

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BLESSED To Be Wise! * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 5:15-17 * 5/28/17

Ephesians 1:7-8 "God's grace lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding"

Ephesians 3:10 "Through the church, the manifold wisdom of God should be made known"

1 Corinthians 1:30 "You are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God"

Colossians 2:3 "In Christ are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge"

Ephesians 3:17 "So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith"

If Jesus lives in me, he makes me wise!

1.  I will be wise in the LIFE I live

  • Ephesians 5:15 "Be very careful then, how you live (walk), not as unwise but as wise"
  • Ephesians 5:8 "Now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light"
  • Ephesians 5:11 "Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness"

2.  I will be wise with the TIME I live

  • Ephesians 5:16 "Making the most of every opportunity (redeeming the time), because the days are evil"
  • Time is chronos (general time) and kairos (special moment of time/opportunity)
  • Mark 1:15 "The time (kairos) is come, the kingdom of God is near. Repent and believe the gospel"
  • Psalm 39:4 "Let me know how fleeting my life is" (1 Corinthians 7:29 "The time is short")
  • Psalm 90:12 "Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom"
  • Colossians 4:5 "Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity" (Luke 4:13 "The devil left him until an opportune time/kairos)"
  • 2 Corinthians 6:2 "Now is the time (kairos)...now is the day of salvation"

3. I will be wise for the PURPOSE I live

  • Psalm 138:8 "The Lord will fulfill (accomplish, complete, work out) his purpose for me (his plans for my life)"
  • Ephesians 5:17 "Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord's will is"
  • Psalm 14:1 "The fools says in his heart, 'There is no God'"
  • Proverbs 14:9 "Fools mock at sin (make fun of guilt or making amends for sin)
  • Luke 12:19, 20 "I'll say to myself, 'You have plenty of grain laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink, and be merry.' But God said to him 'You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?'"
  • Ephesians 5:17 "Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord's will is"
  • Ephesians 5:10 "Find out what pleases the Lord"
  • 2 Timothy 3:15 "The Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus"
  • Colossians 3:16 "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom

Dig Deeper:  Read Ephesians 5:15-17

(1) What is wisdom, and how do we get it? How can we walk wisely?

(2) How can we be wise with our time?

(3) What is God's purpose for you?

BLESSED To Be Light! * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 5:8-14 * 5/21/17

1. We are not who we were ONCE

  • Ephesians 5:8 "You were once darkness"
  • Colossians 1:12-14 "He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves"
  • Ephesians 5:11 "Have nothing to do with the fruitless deeds of darkness"
  • John 12:46 "I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness"

2. We live according to who we are NOW

  • Ephesians 5:8 "But now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light"
  • Ephesians 5:9: "The fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth"
  • Proverbs 4:18: "The path of the righteous is like the morning sun, shining ever brighter 'til the full light of day"
  • Ephesians 5:13 "Everything exposed by the light becomes visible"
  • Acts 26:18 "Open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me"

3. We shine as we stay connected to the LORD

  • Ephesians 5:8 "Now you are light in the Lord"
  • Ephesians 5:10 "Find out what pleases the Lord"
  • Psalm 119:130 "The unfolding (teaching, entrance) of your words gives light"
  • John 9:5 "While I am in the world, I am the light of the world."
  • Matthew 5:14, 16 - You are the light of the world
  • Ephesians 5:14 "Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you"
  • The difference between the living and the dead:  The dead do not praise the Lord (sing his praises, give him thanks), but we do! (Psalm 115:17-18); the dead do not hope in God's faithfulness (Isaiah 38:18), but we trust his promises! "They believed his promises and sang his praise" (Psalm 106:12); the dead do not witness for the Lord, but we do! "I will not die but live, and will proclaim what the Lord has done" (Psalm 118:17)
  • Isaiah 60:1 "Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you"

Dig Deeper:  Read Ephesians 5:8-14

(1) What were we before we knew Christ? What are some of the differences in your life - before and after Christ?

(2) What are we now in Christ? What does the fruit of light look like? How do you see the light making progress in you? How has God used you to shine his light?

(3) How do you stay connected to the source of light? What can you do to wake up from spiritual lethargy?

BLESSED To Live In Love! * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 5:1-2 * 5/14/17

Ephesians 5:1-2 "Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God."

  1. Know that you are LOVED
  • Ephesians 5:1 "Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children"
  • 1 John 3:1 "How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!"
  • 1 John 4:16 "We know and rely on the love God has for us.God is love"
  • Galatians 2:20 "The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me"
  1. Follow in his EXAMPLE
  • Ephesians 5:2a "Live a life of love (walk in love), just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us"
  • Ephesians 4:32 "Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you"
  • Romans 5:8 "God demonstrates (shows, proves) his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us"
  • 1 Peter 2:21 "Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps" ("Be imitators of God" Ephesians 5:1)
  • John 13:15 "I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you"
  • Ephesians 3:16 "I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being"
  1. Live in sweet SURRENDER
  • Ephesians 5:2b "Christ gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God"
  • 2 Corinthians 2:15 "We are to God the pleasing aroma (fragrance) of Christ"
  • 2 Corinthians 2:14 "God...uses us to spread the aroma (fragrance) of the knowledge of him everywhere"
  • Romans 12:1 "Offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God"
  • Romans 6:13 "Offer yourselves to God as those who have been brought from death to life; and offer every part of yourself to him as instruments of righteousness"
  • Psalm 19:14 "May the words of my mouth and the meditation (deep thoughts) of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O Lord"
  • Philippians 4:6 "Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God"
  • 1 Peter 5:7 "Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you"

Dig Deeper:  Read Ephesians 5:1-2

(1) How are you trusting and relying on God's love?

(2) What does it mean to imitate God? What example has Christ given us? Where do you find power?

(3) How is surrender sweet? What do you need to give up to God?

BLESSED To Be Thankful! * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 5:3-7 * 5/7/17

Ephesians 5:5 "But rather thanksgiving" (I'd rather be giving thanks to God!)

Ephesians 1:3 "Praise be to the God and Father...who has blessed us;" 1:16 "I have not stopped giving thanks for you;" 5:20 "Always giving thanks to God"

We are thankful to be HOLY

  • Ephesians 5:3 "There must not be even a hint of sexual immorality, or of any kind of impurity, or of greed, because these are improper for God's holy people"
  • 1 Thessalonians 4:3 "It is God's will that you should be sanctified (holy, dedicated for God's use): that you should avoid sexual immorality"
  • 1 Thessalonians 4:4,5,7 "Each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that is holy and honorable...For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy (sanctified) life"
  • John 17:17 "Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth"
  • Romans 15:16 "Sanctified by the Holy Spirit"
  • 1 Timothy 4:5 "Sanctified by the word of God and prayer" (Daily surrender/Romans 12:1)
  • Ephesians 4:22 "Put off your old self...corrupted by its deceitful desires"

We are thankful to speak WISELY

  • Ephesians 5:4 "Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving" (Ephesians 4:29/speak to bless)
  • Psalm 141:3 "Set a guard over my mouth, Lord; keep watch over the door of my lips.

We are thankful to be free from IDOLATRY

  • Ephesians 5:5 "No immoral, impure or greedy person - such a person is an idolater - has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God"
  • 1 Peter 1:4 "An inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade. This inheritance is kept in heaven for you"

We are thankful to walk OBEDIENTLY

  • Ephesians 5:6 "Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God's wrath comes on those who are disobedient" (Ephesians 2:2/which spirit?)
  • 1 Peter 1:2 "Through the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to be obedient to Jesus Christ and sprinkled with his blood"

We are thankful to be united with the GODLY

  • Ephesians 5:7 "Therefore do not be partners with them"
  • 1 Peter 4:3-4 "You have spent enough time in the past doing what pagans choose to do...They are surprised that you do not run with them"
  • Psalm 101:6 "My eyes will be on the faithful...that they may dwell with me"

Digging Deeper:

Read Ephesians 5:3-7

(1) What helps you to stay holy, dedicated to God?

(2) How do you control your speech? What should our words do? (Ephesians 4:29) How have you been affected by the words of others?

(3) What keeps us free from idolatry?

(4) How have you become more obedient?

(5) How do your companions affect you?

BLESSED To Be A Blessing! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * Ephesians 4:28-32 * 4/30/17

Memory Verse:  Romans 12:2 "Do not conform any longer to the pattern of the world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind."

As we continue to learn and grow as followers of Christ, God transforms us by the renewing of our minds. We become more like Christ and our behavior reflects his values and promotes his purposes. We are "Blessed to be a Blessing"

Transformed Form Stealing to SHARING

Ephesians 4:28 "He who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with his own hands, that he may have something to share with those in need.

1 Thessalonians 4:1-12 "Lead a quiet life, mind your own business, and work with your hands so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders."

Matthew 20:28 "just as the Son of Man didn't come to be served, but to serve, and give his life as a ransom for many."

Transformed From Unwholesome Talk to UPLIFTING TALK

Ephesians 4:29 "Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen."

Proverbs 18:21 "The tongue has the power of life and death."

Proverbs 12:18 "Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing."

James 1:26 "If anyone considers himself religious and yet does not keep a tight reign on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless."

James 3:1-12 James also dedicates the better part of chapter 3 to address the damages of the tongue.

1 Peter 4:11 "If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God."

Transformed From Grieving the Holy Spirit to PLEASING THE LORD

Ephesians 4:30 "And do not grieve the Holy Spirit, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption." Our words and actions can bring grief to the Holy Spirit or they can bless the Lord. Our behavior each day will either hurt God's kingdom or help to further it. There is no neutral ground.

Isaiah 63:10 "They rebelled and grieved his Holy Spirit. So he turned against them and became their enemy and fought against them." Ouch!! If we grieve the Holy Spirit, God will discipline us to teach us the correct behavior just like he disciplined the Israelites.

Transformed From Malice to FORGIVENESS

Ephesians 4:31-32 "Get rid of all bitterness, rage, and anger, brawling and slander along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you."

Colossians 3:8-12 Put off the old self and put on the new self. Paul references the same list of bad behaviors - anger, rage, malice, slander...

Colossians 3:13 "forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another, forgive as the Lord forgave you."

Matthew 6:12, 14 Jesus instructs us to do the same in the Lord's prayer. "Forgive us our trespasses as we have forgiven those who trespass against us."

Colossians 3:17 "And whatever you do, whether in word or deed - do it all in the name of Jesus, giving thanks to God."

Hebrews 10:24 "And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds."

Digging Deeper: 

(1) How are you living up to God's standard of behavior in your life? What are the areas God is working on to help you change and grow in Him?

(2) How can the Lord help you to change your speech to be more positive, ore compassionate, more encouraging of others?

(3) Check out the life of Barnabas in Acts 4:36-37, Acts 19:27.

(4) Study the life of George Muller - a wonderful example of a life transformed in Christ.

 

BLESSED To Be Made New! (part 2) * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 4:25-27 * 4/23/17

  • 2 Corinthians 5:17 "If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!"
  • Ezekiel 36:26 "I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you"
  • Ephesians 4:22 "Put off your old self"
  • Ephesians 4:23 "Be made new in the attitude of your minds"
  • Ephesians 4:24 "Put on the new self, created to be like God"
  1. Because Jesus makes me new, I live the TRUTH
    • Ephesians 4:25 "Each of you must put off falsehood (the lie) and speak truthfully (the truth) to his neighbor, for we are all members of one body"
    • John 8:44 "The devil...was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him...He is a liar and the father of lies"
    • Ephesians 4:15 "Speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the Head, that is, Christ"
  2. Because Jesus makes me new, I control my ANGER
    • Ephesians 4:26 "In your anger do not sin:  Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry"
    • Ephesians 4:31 "Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger"
    • Proverbs 16:32 "Better a patient (slow to anger) person than a warrior, one with self-control (rules his own spirit) than one who takes a city"
    • Proverbs 29:11 "A fool gives full vent to his anger, but a wise man keeps himself under control"
    • Proverbs 15:1 "A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger"
    • James 1:19-20 "Be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, for the anger of man does not produce the righteousness of God"
    • Romans 12:19 "Do not take revenge...but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: 'It is mine to avenge; I will repay,' says the Lord"
    • 1 Peter 2:21-23 "Follow in his steps...When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats (of revenge). Instead, he entrusted (kept entrusting) himself to him who judges justly (he left his case in the hands of God)"
  3. Because Jesus makes me new, I give the enemy no PLACE
    • Ephesians 4:27 "Do not give the devil a foothold (place, opportunity)" (Revelation 12:8)
    • 1 Peter 5:8 "Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour"
    • Hebrews 12:2-4 "Fixing our eyes on Jesus...who endured the cross. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart (or give up)" Look to (keep our eyes on) Jesus!

Dig Deeper:

Read Ephesians 4:25-27

(1) What are some of the enemy's lies? How do you respond?

(2) What effects have you seen from angry people? How can we handle angry feelings?

(3) How do we give the enemy a place to work? How do we shut the door?

BLESSED To Be Made New! (part 1) * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 4:21-24 * 4/16/17

RESURRECTION DAY! * Luke 24:1-8

  1. Jesus makes ME new!
    • 2 Corinthians 5:17 "If anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!"
    • Ezekiel 36:26 "I will give you a new heart an put a new spirit in you"
    • I Peter 1:3 "He has given us new birth (caused us to be born again) into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead"
    • James 1:18 "He chose to give us birth through the word of truth"
    • Ephesians 4:21 "Surely you heard of him, and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus"
  2. Jesus makes my MIND new!
    • Romans 12:2 "Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind"
    • Ephesians 4:22-23 "You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds"
    • Colossians 2:13-14 "God made you alive with Christ. He forgave us all our sins...He took it away, nailing it to the cross"
    • Ephesians 1:7 "In Him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins"
  3. Jesus makes my SELF new!
    • Ephesians 4:24 "Put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness"
    • Colossians 3:10 "Put on the new self, which is being renewed in knowledge in the image of its creator"
    • Romans 6:4 "Just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may walk in newness of life"
    • Romans 8:11 "If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you"
    • 2 Corinthians 4:16 "Inwardly we are being renewed day by day"
    • Psalm 73:24 "And afterward you will take me into glory"

Dig Deeper:

Read Ephesians 4:21 - 24

(1) How would you explain the meaning of Easter? How does Christ make us new?

(2) What does it mean to have a renewed mind? What is our part in that renewing process? Why is forgiveness part of that renewal?

(3) What are some of the changes Christ has made in your life? What is he still working on?

BLESSED To Know The Truth * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 4:14-21 * 4/9/17

Palm Sunday

  • Matthew 21:10-11 "Who is this?...This is Jesus"
  • John 18:38 "Pilate asked him (Jesus), 'What is truth?'"
  • John 14:6 "I am the way and the truth and the life"

Because we know Jesus:

  1. We know the truth about God's WORD
    • Ephesians 4:11 - 13, 21 "Surely you heard of him, and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus"
    • Psalm 119:160 "All your words are true (the sum of your words is true)"
    • John 17:17 "Your word is truth"
    • Acts 17:11 "They received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if these things were true"
  2. We know the truth about DECEPTION
    • Ephesians 4:14 "Then we will no longer be infants, tossed back and forth by the waves, and blown here and there by every wind of teaching and by the cunning and craftiness of men in their deceitful (deception) scheming"
    • Matthew 24:4 "Watch out that no one deceives you (misleads, leads you astray)"
    • 2 Peter 3:16 "Ignorant (untaught, unlearned) and unstable people distort (twist), as they do the other Scriptures"
    • 1 Timothy 4:1 "The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons"
    • 1 John 4:6 "We recognize the Spirit of truth and the spirit of falsehood"
    • 2 Timothy 4:2-4 "Preach the word...correct, rebuke and encourage - with great patience and careful instruction"
  3. We know the truth about the HEAD
    • Ephesians 4:15-16 "Speaking the truth in love, we will in all things grow up into him who is the head, that is, Christ"
    • Ephesians 1:22 "God placed all things under his feet and appointed him (Christ) to be head over everything for the church"
    • Colossians 2:19 "They have lost connection with the head"
  4. We know the truth about the new LIFE
    • Ephesians 4:17-19 "You must no longer live as the Gentiles (unbelievers)"
    • Ephesians 4:20 "You did not come to know Christ that way"
  5. We know the truth about the Father's PROTECTION
    • Acts 20:28 "Keep watch over (guard) yourselves and all the flock"
    • Luke 12:32 "Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom"
    • John 10:29 "No one can snatch them (my sheep) out of my Father's hand"

Dig Deeper:

Read Ephesians 4:14-21

(1) How would most people define truth? How do we know and grow in the truth?

(2) What are some spiritual deceptions today?

(3) What makes the church grow?

(4) What in your life has Christ changed?

(5) How are we protected?

BLESSED To Serve! * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 4:7-13 * 4/2/17

Ephesians 4:12 "Prepare God's people for works of service (ministry)"

  1. Serve by his GRACE
    • Ephesians 4:7 "But to each one of us grace has been given as Christ apportioned it"
    • 1 Peter 4:10 "Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others, as faithful stewards of God's grace in its various forms"
    • Lists of gifts: Romans 12:6-8; 1 Corinthians 12:4-11, 27-30; 1 Peter 4:8-11
  2. Serve with his HEART
    • Mark 10:45 "The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many"
    • Philippians 2:5-7 " Your attitude (mindset) should be the same as that of Christ...who made himself nothing (emptied himself) taking the very nature of a servant"
  3. Serve for his GLORY
    • 1 Peter 4:11 "If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever"
    • 1 Corinthians 10:31 "Whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God"
  4. Serve in our SENDING
    • Ephesians 4:11 "He gave some to be apostles"
    • Ephesians 2:20 "Built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets"
    • Luke 6:13 "He called his disciples to him...whom he also designated apostles"
    • John 17:18 "As you sent me into the world, I have sent them into the world"
  5. Serve in our SPEAKING
    • Ephesians 4:11 "He gave...some to be prophets"
    • 1 Corinthians 14:3 "The one who prophesies speaks to people for their strengthening, encouraging and comfort"
  6. Serve in our WITNESSING
    • Ephesians 4:11 "He gave...some to be evangelists"
    • Acts 1:8 "You will be my witnesses"
  7. Serve in our CARING and FEEDING
    • Ephesians 4:11 "He gave...some to be pastors and teachers"
    • Jeremiah 3:15 "I will give you shepherds after my own heart who will lead (feed, shepherd) you with knowledge and understanding" (2 Timothy 3:16-17 "Scripture")
    • John 20:15-17 "Feed my sheep...shepherd (lead, care for, protect) my sheep"
    • Ephesians 4:12-13 "To prepare God's People for works of service (ministry), so that the body of Christ may be built up...and become mature"

Dig Deeper:

Read Ephesians 4:7-13

(1) According to v. 11 whose job is it to do ministry? What ministry gifts have you seen in your life?

(2-3) What does it mean to serve by God's grace, with his heart, and for his glory?

(4-7) Describe the different ministry gifts in v. 11. Pray for the Lord to raise up more willing hearts to serve him!

BLESSED To Walk Together! * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 4:3-6 * 3/19/17

  1. We are given unity to LIVE AT PEACE
    • Ephesians 4:3 "Make every effort to keep (maintain, preserve, guard) the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace"
    • Psalm 133:1, 3 "How good and pleasant it is when brothers (God's people) live together in unity (oneness, harmony)...For there the Lord bestows his blessing, even life forevermore"
    • Romans 12:18 "If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone"
  2. We are one BODY filled with one SPIRIT
    • Ephesians 4:4 "There is one body and one Spirit"
    • Ephesians 2:22 "In him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit"
  3. We have one HOPE in one LORD
    • Ephesians 4:4-5 "Just as you were called to one hope when you were called - one Lord"
    • Colossians 1:27 "Christ in you, the hope of glory"
  4. We share one FAITH by one BAPTISM
    • Ephesians 4:5 "One faith, one baptism"
    • Galatians 3:26-28 "You are all children of God through faith in Christ Jesus for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus"
    • 1 Corinthians 12:13, 27 "We were all baptized by one Spirit so as to form one body...Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it"
  5. We are children of one GOD and one FATHER
    • Ephesians 4:6 "One God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all."
    • 1 Corinthians 8:6 "There is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we exist"

Dig Deeper:

Read Ephesians 4:3-6

(1) Where does unity come from, and how do we maintain it?

(2) Why does the body need the Spirit?

(3) How is Christ our hope?

(4) How are baptism and faith connected?

(5) How is the Father at work in us? Pray for us to keep unity!

BLESSED To Walk Worthy! * Pastor Bill Sy * 4:1-2 * 3/12/17

  • How should I walk (live the rest of my life)? Ephesians 4:1 "As a prisoner for the Lord, then, I urge you to walk worthy of the calling you have received"
  • What's my calling? I Corinthians 1:2 "In Christ Jesus, saints by calling"
  • Ephesians 1:1 "To the saints (holy ones, dedicated to the Lord) in Ephesus, the faithful in Christ Jesus"
  • We don't live UP to our calling but OUT of our calling!
  • What's the map for my walk? Psalm 119:105 "Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light for my path"
  • How can I walk worthy? Revelation 5:11 "Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain"
  1. The power to walk a worthy life is Jesus in ME
    • Ephesians 3:16 "I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being"
    • Ephesians 3:17 "So that Christ may dwell (settle down, permanently abide) in your hearts through faith"
    • Galatians 2:20 "I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me"
    • Matthew 10:38 "He who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me"
  2. Jesus in me is HUMBLE
    • Ephesians 4:2 "Be completely humble"
    • Philippians 2:7-8 "He made himself nothing by taking the very nature of a servant, and being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself"
  3. Jesus in me is GENTLE
    • Ephesians 4:2 "Be completely humble and gentle"
    • Matthew 11:29 "I am gentle and humble in heart"
  4. Jesus in me is PATIENT
    • Ephesians 4:2 "Be completely humble and gentle; be patient"
    • 1 Timothy 1:16 "I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited (immense, perfect) patience as an example for those who would believe in him"
  5. Jesus in me is FORBEARING
    • Ephesians 4:2 "Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing (forbearing, making allowance for each other's faults because of your love) with one another in love"
    • Romans 3:25 "In his forbearance passed over sins previously committed"
    • Proverb 19:11 "It is to one's glory to overlook an offense"
    • Colossians 3:13 "Bear with one another (forbearing) and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you"

Dig Deeper:

Read Ephesians 4:1-2

(1) What does it mean to walk worthy? How can we do that?

(2-5) Describe the qualities that Jesus wants to produce in us. How have you experienced them, and how can you grow in each of them? Pray for the Lord to be revealed through us.

BLESSED With His Power! * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 3:14-21 * 3/5/17

Ephesians 3:14-16 "I kneel before the Father...I pray"

  1. Pray for his power so Christ can PRESIDE over our lives
    • Romans 15:12 "The root of Jesse (David's descendant) will come, who arises to rule the Gentiles; in him will the Gentiles (nations) hope (put their trust)"
    • Ephesians 3:16 "I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being"
    • Ephesians 3:17 "So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith"
    • Dwell:  to settle down, be at home, permanent not temporary
    • Colossians 1:27 "God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the hope of glory"
    • 2 Corinthians 4:16 "Though outwardly we are wasting away (decaying), yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day"
    • Romans 7:22 "In my inner being I delight in God's law (God's word)"
    • 1 Peter 2:2 "Crave (long for, desire) pure spiritual milk (of the word), so that by it you may grow up in your salvation"
    • Hebrews 5:12 "You need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God's word all over again. You need milk, not solid food"
  2. Pray for his power so we can know his LOVE for our lives
    • Ephesians 3:17-19 " I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge - that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God"
    • I John 4:16 "We know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them"
  3. Pray for his power so God can do WONDERS in our lives
    • Ephesians 3:20-21 "Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church"
    • Isaiah 64:3 "You did awesome things that we did not expect (beyond our highest expectations)"

Dig Deeper:

Read Ephesians 3:14-21

(1) What are some of the different postures for prayer? What do they mean for you? What does it look like for Christ to rule over us? How do you feed your inner being spiritually?

(2) How have you grown in knowing God's love? How are you living in that love?

(3) How have God's answers to prayer surprised you?

BLESSED In My Suffering * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 3:1-13 * 2/26/17

Ephesians 3:1 "I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus"

Ephesians 3:13 "I ask you, therefore, not to be discouraged because of my sufferings"

  1. In my suffering I trust that Christ is in CONTROL
    • Ephesians 3:1 "I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles"
    • 1 Peter 2:19 "It is commendable if someone bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because they are conscious of God"
    • Romans 12:12 "Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer"
  2. In my suffering I receive GRACE
    • Ephesians 3:2 "God's grace was given to me for you"
    • Ephesians 3:8 "Although I am less than the least of all God's people, this grace was given me"
    • Ephesians 3:12 "Through faith in him we may approach God with freedom (boldness) and confidence"
    • Hebrews 4:16 " Approach God's throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need"
  3. In my suffering I serve the GOSPEL
    • Ephesians 3:7 "I became a servant of this gospel by the gift of God's grace given me through the working of his power"
    • 2 Timothy 2:9 " I am suffering even to the point of being chained like a criminal. But God's word is not chained"
    • Ephesians 6:19-20 "Pray for me...that I will boldly make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains, that I proclaim it fearlessly"
  4. In my suffering I remember god's PROMISES
    • Ephesians 3:8 "The unsearchable riches of Christ (Romans 8:28; John 16:33; Romans 5:3)
    • Psalm 119:50 "My comfort in my suffering (troubles) is this; your promise (your word) preserves my life (revives me, gives me new life)"
    • 1 Thessalonians 1:6 "You welcomed the word in the midst of severe suffering with the joy given by the Holy Spirit"
  5. In my suffering I focus on the needs of OTHERS
    • Ephesians 3:13 "I ask you, therefore, not to be discouraged because of my sufferings for you, which are your glory"
    • Philippians 1:7 "I have you in my heart and, whether I am in chains or defending and confirming the gospel, all of you share in God's grace with me"

Dig Deeper:

Read Ephesians 3:1-13

(1) What things do we sometimes allow to imprison us? What has helped you see the Lord in your suffering?

(2-3) How has grace empowered you to serve the gospel?

(4) What are some of the promises of God's word that help you when suffering?

(5) What was Paul's concern for others? Who has shown concern for you in your troubles? Pray for those who are suffering.

 

BLESSED To Be His Temple! * Pastor Bill Sy * Ephesians 2:11-22 * 2/19/17

  1. In his temple we are brought NEAR to God
    • Ephesians 2:13 "But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ"
    • Ephesians 2:12 "You were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship and without God in the world"
    • Ephesians 2:18 "Through him we both have access to the Father by one Spirit"
    • Ephesians 2:19 "Yoo are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household"
  2. In his temple we are RECONCILED to each other
    • Ephesians 2:14-16 "He himself is our peace, who has made the two one and has destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility...His purpose was to create in himself one new man out of the two, thus making peace, in this one body to reconcile both of them to God through the cross, by which he put to death their hostility"
    • John 11:51-52 "As high priest that year he prophesied that Jesus would die for the Jewish nation, and not only for that nation but also for the scattered children of God, to bring them together and make them one"
  3. In his temple we are being built TOGETHER for his Spirit
    • Ephesians 2:21-22 "In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit"
    • Ephesians 2:20 "Built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone"
    • 1 Peter 2:5 "You also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.
    • Romans 14:19 "Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification"

Dig Deeper:

Read Ephesians 2:11-22

(1) What was our condition apart from Christ? How did God bring us to himself? What has changed for us?

(2) What creates walls between people? What did Christ do? When has there been a wall in your relationships, and how did it change?

(3) What does it mean for us to be God's temple? What is God doing in your life to join and fit you to other living stones in the temple? Pray for the Lord to fill us, his temple, with his Spirit!