Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Sermon Notes for October 23

Sermon Series + "Dear Timothy, Keep The Faith" 

Each sermon, we will read a chapter of 2 Timothy, together.  Please bring your Bible or use one provided in the pew racks.  This letter captures the end of Paul's ministry and he lays out what is most important for his fellow worker and travel companion to do after the Apostle's race is run.

Week 4 + "Faithfully Fought"

In 2 Timothy chapter4, there is a dramatic shift of verb tense.  Paul “has fought the good fight."  He may sense that the end of his life is near, so now he claims victory in the name of Jesus.  Timothy is assured that he will have the same victory as now Paul's companion is charged to take up the struggle and keep the faith.  


Join Bethany's Church Properties Team and help us give God glory for the many gifts we have in our facilities. Just a few hours makes an incredible difference and helps us put our best foot forward when we host a huge community outreach, next weekend.   

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Sermon Notes for October 16

In October, we are reading through the short book of 2 Timothy in a special series titled,  "Dear Timothy, Keep The Faith".

2 Timothy, chapter 3 - "Faithfully Teaching"

Paul writes what may be his last words to Timothy – a young missionary/pastor who has shared many days of travel with his mentor.  In chapter 3 of this letter, Paul speaks of the “last days” and instructs Timothy the man of God is to remember the power and purpose of God’s Word to navigate through these dark times.  

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Sermon Notes for October 2

"Dear Timothy, Keep The Faith" is a four part expository series.  Expository means exposing (or explaining) the words and flow of thought drawn from the original text.  

Part One (2 Timothy chapter one): "Faithfully Guarding"

Paul writes to Timothy, “God gave us a spirit not of fear, but of power and love and self-control.” (2 Timothy 1:7).  These are good words to keep in our hearts as the Apostle charges Timothy to “guard the good deposit.”  We think of a deposit as something we take to the bank.  That is not a bad image to have in mind as we begin to read 2 Timothy and contemplate what benefits guarding the good deposit may have.  

Blessed Michaelmas!

Today is the Feast of St. Michael and All Angels (or Michaelmas if you are in England), and a good time to pause and contemplate the heavenly beings that populate the pages of Scripture.  Angels are part of God's (normally) unseen creation, so they also populate a lot of imaginative stories.

St. Michael is an archangel - a term that is used in the book of Jude.  He leads the Lord's armies against the fallen angels in a scene depicted in Revelation 12.  Angel armies are mentioned in other places, as well.  Such as when the leader (likely Michael) talks to Joshua before the Battle of Jericho and when the prophet Elisha comforts his servant with the knowledge that "those who are with us are more than those who are with them."

There are other named angels, such as Gabriel, who is a messenger.  He is first interpreting the dreams of Daniel, but then plays a crucial role in the birth narrative of Jesus.  Angels announce special births (like Samson) and events (like The Resurrection) all through the Bible.  The name "angelos" in Greek means "messenger".  

The third named angel is Rafael.  You are forgiven if you do not know that one.  He is mentioned in the book of Tobit - part of the Apocrypha (think of these books as close cousins of the Bible).  His role is that of a healer.  Healing or ministering is another angelic action in the Bible, such as when Elijah is given spiritual food and strength, and Jesus is ministered to after his forty day fasting in the wilderness.  

There are other named angels in Pseudepigraphal books like Enoch (think of these books as distant cousins of the Bible... very distant, in some cases).  Just getting acquainted with angelic activity in the Bible is quite a study, let alone all the myths and imaginative stories that are out there.  This day is meant to simply stop, pause and thank God for His angels who are sent to heal, bring news, and show that (as Michael's name suggests) there is none like God!

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Dear Timothy....

In the month of October, all four chapters of 2 Timothy are appointed in our weekly church readings.  This not only gives us an opportunity to read through a book of the Bible, but it also to revisit a part of our Biblical journey, last year.  After we read through the main story of “The Bible” by way of “The Story”, a number of people said that they would like to revisit the life of St. Paul.  Through this letter to Timothy, we are perhaps given a window into the very last days of the Apostle and the legacy he was hoping to leave behind.

Friday, September 23, 2016

Sermon Notes for September 25

+  "Where Your Heart Is" is a special two part sermon and Bible Study series on Stewardship and the proper use of money.  Concluding the series, we will read 1 Timothy 6:6-17 and consider the "root of all kinds of evil."  Despite the unusually warm weather we have been having in Northern Virginia, we may be reminded of a popular Christmas story in our studies.  

+ Sermon Title and Outline: "Righteous Root" 
i.  Timothy the Steward
     a. "Flee..."
     b.  "Pursue..."
ii. Raising an Ebeneezer
     a. Samuel
     b..  Scrooge

Bonus Quote from the aforementioned Christmas story: 

“Business!  Mankind was my business. The common welfare was my business; charity, mercy, forbearance, benevolence, were all my business. The dealings of my trade were but a drop of water in the comprehensive ocean of my business!”

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Sermon Notes for September 18

First Thoughts + This Sunday, we start a special two part series all about Stewardship and a Godly attitude toward money.  First up is a look at Luke 16:1-13 and the parable of the dishonest manager.  When Jesus tells a story about a shrewd dude who cooks the books and gets away with it, what is the message?  One key for understanding is to discover who are the servants, and who is the master.  

Title and Outline + "Where Your Heart Is 1 - Unrighteous Wealth"

1. The Meaning of Money 
    a.  Unrighteous wealth
    b.  Praise of the master
2.  Three Purposes
    a.  yourself
    b.   your neighbor
    c.  your church
3.  Stewards and Servants
    a.  Macedonia and Corinth
    b.  Sharing God's Gifts

*NOTE: Elements of this week's sermon are from the last part of the free Stewardship series from CPH (Concordia Publishing House) titled, "Managing God's Gifts."  We shared parts 1-3 over the summer, saving part 4 for this Sunday.  
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