I have read about a man named Wilmer McLean who refused to participate in the Civil War. He adamantly opposed taking sides. He had friends in the North and friends in the South. Continue Reading…
Archives For Sermon Illustrations
I was walking through a gift store yesterday, one week before Thanksgiving, and noticed that all the seasonal sales were Christmas. Apparently, after the Halloween stuff went down; the Christmas stuff went up. What about Thanksgiving? Then I thought, “That is okay with me, at least maybe this holiday will not get commercialized and stripped of its spiritual significance.” Continue Reading…
I read about one such minister who was preaching that the word “in” (“i,” “n”) did not necessarily mean “inside”; it means, “close to, round about, or nearby”. He went on to say that the Bible said Jonah was“in” the stomach of the great fish, and “in” simply meant, “close to, roundabout, or nearby”. After the service, a man came up to him and said that his sermon was the most comforting message he had ever heard. It had cleared up so many difficult things to believe in the Bible; like when the three Hebrew young men were thrown “in” the fiery furnace and were not burned – well, that was because they were really never in there, but close to or nearby. And Daniel “But,” the man went on to say, “the most encouraging thing about your explanation of “in” is that even though I don’t believe the gospel, if I’m wrong, I won’t actually be ‘in’ hell, I’ll just be close to or nearby” (From Stephen Davey’s sermon on Revelation 12:7-10 at Wisdom for the Heart).
Have you ever felt like the world around you is getting older, faster than you? A woman was sitting in the waiting room for her first appointment with her new dentist. She noticed his diploma hanging on the wall and thought she recognized his name. She remembered that a tall, dark-haired boy with the same name had been in her high school class many years ago. Could it be the same guy she had a big crush on back in the fifties? Continue Reading…
I READ the following story that was recorded in the police log in Sarasota, Florida. It was a story of something that occurred there that was rather humorous. An elderly Florida woman did her shopping and upon returning to her car, found four men in the act of leaving with her vehicle. She dropped her shopping bags and, having prepared for a moment like this when she would need protection, drew from her purse a handgun. Not only had she been trained and licensed to carry it, she was prepared to fire it. She yelled at the top of her lungs, “I have a gun, and I know how to use it! Get out of the car, now!” Continue Reading…
Pastor and freelance writer Mark Buchanan tells about a conversation he had with a young philosophy student in his early twenties. Mark had officiated a wedding on a gorgeous day on the Sunshine Coast of British Columbia, and at the reception the student asked Mark if he really believed all that religious stuff he had spouted at the church. Continue Reading…
THE FIRE OF GOD’S JUDGMENT IS COMING! Christ warns this church in Thyatira, just as He warned the prophets of Baal through Elijah. The One is coming with eyes of fire and feet with red hot heat.
At 2 o’clock in the morning, if you heard a noise, got up, looked out your window, and saw the woods around you on fire and could tell by the direction of the wind that the fire was going to sweep over your neighbor’s house, where they were sleeping, what would you do?
Would you stand there and debate, “Wouldn’t they rather be left alone? They’re probably sound asleep. Besides, if I get them up, they are going to have to run out in their pajamas and that might be embarrassing; they might be really uncomfortable with fire trucks and news vans and camer as everywhere. I tell you what – I won’t disturb them!”?
Would that be the right and loving thing to do? No! The loving thing would be to run over, break their door down, yell “Fire!”, run upstairs, turn on the lights, and wake them so they can get out.
Confronting the sinner for this church, and for any church, is the action of a loving body that attempts to awaken the sinning believer who is being deceived by the spiritually deadening pleasure of sin. It is the loving, firm, caring, passionate attempt to rescue someone before the fire of judgment reaches them (Stephen Davey sermon).
I read, some time ago, of David Buick, who founded the Buick car company. He made millions off the sale of his particular line of cars and lived the life of a millionaire. However, Buick would lose his fortune. In fact, he became so destitute that he had to declare bankruptcy and, in the later years of his life, was too poor to buy a car with his name on it. William Durant ultimately brought the Buick line of cars into General Motors. Durant also bought out Olds of Oldsmobile and others as well. He took all the automotive strings and pulled them together. If you want to read an interesting biography, read his. Durant was a creative genius, but he was not able to organize what he created. He eventually, even tried to compete against his own creation, General Motors, and lost his fortune. He also, became too poor to own a car. His last job, before he died, was managing a bowling alley. All of these stories pale in significance when you think of the One who rode upon the wind; who had multitudes of cherubim and seraphim singing of His holiness and His glory. He came down and became one of us. Jesus gave up His rights to live like God (From Stephen Davey’s sermon on Four Rights that Christ Gave Up).
The unity of the church is inward not outward. When the Bible talks about unity it is not talking about some kind of outward unity, it is talking about an inward unity. It is talking about something that is internally compelling, not externally controlled. It is more heartfelt than creedal. It is not particularly verbal as much as it is emotional, spiritual. It is the union of hearts and minds and souls in common cause. It’s not people just being united because they’re in the same container; it’s people who are literally attracted to each other because they’re pulled by the same power.
Let me see if I can illustrate that. If you have a bag filled with marbles you have a certain unity. You have one bag full of marbles and all those marbles are pushed against each other, packed together. But that which binds them into unity is the container. It’s something on the outside that holds them. As soon as you tear the bag, the marbles are everywhere because there’s nothing intrinsic or internal to keep them together. It’s purely the package they’re in, the container.
But on the other hand, if you have a magnet and you put that magnet into some metal shavings, the shavings will all adhere to the magnet. Not because there is an external container but because there’s an internal force. And they are pulled to each other because they are all pulled by the same force pulling through each other. And that’s how the church is to be, it is not a collection of marbles in the same bag, it is people who are pressed against each other because they’re all magnetized by the same force, which is the power of Jesus Christ. That’s the internal unity of the church. We are pulled to each other because we are pulled through each other by the power that pulls, which is Christ (MacArthur’s sermon on Phil. 2:1).
A husband read a book entitled, You Can Be THE Man of Your House and got all fired up about what he was reading. He marched into the kitchen and announced to his wife, “From now on, you need to know that I am the man of this house . . . You will prepare me a gourmet meal tonight, and when I’m finished eating my meal, you will serve me a decadent dessert. . . . Afterwards, you are going to draw me a bath so I can relax. . . . Then . . . guess who’s going to dress me and comb my hair?”
His wife replied, “The funeral director would be my first guess” (Stephen Davey).