Yearly Archives: 2015


The Battle of Christmas Revelation 12:1-17

Download audio Download sermon Revelation 12:1-17 I think we are all sufficiently aware of the fact that Christmas has been commercialized in our culture and that sentiment founded on everything from winter scenery to family reunions has for most Americans replaced its great theological and redemptive meaning. Far too few Americans even know what the […]


Stephen Acts 6:8-8:1

Download audio Download sermon Acts 6:8-8:1 We have an unusually long text to read this morning, but it is very clearly a distinct section of Luke’s narrative, what scholars call a pericope. As we read it put these two questions to yourself: why did Luke think it important to tell this story with so much […]


James 2:1-13

Download audio Download sermon James 2:1-13 We begin a new section of James with another of his more than 50 imperatives that punctuate his short letter. Now the subject is partiality, treating people differently depending on their social class or wealth. We call this “respect of persons” or “favoritism.” [Motyer, 80] James has just written […]


James 1:22-27

Download audio Download sermon James 1:22-27 There is certainly a sense in which the verses we are about to read follow naturally upon those we considered last time insofar as James in both sections is addressing our behavior in reference to the Word of God. But then the entire book addresses our behavior in that […]


James 1:19-21

Download audio Download sermon James 1:19-21 As I have already noted, James, not unlike Proverbs, moves from subject to subject without much in the way of a discernible rationale. His treatment of his subjects, again as in Proverbs, can be quite brief, even terse. Such is the case with the three verse section we are […]


Really? Acts 5:12-16

Download audio Download sermon Acts 5:12-16 We are in the midst of Luke’s narrative of the explosive growth of the fledgling Christian church and the gathering of storm clouds as the establishment had by this time realized that the Christian movement was a serious threat to their power and prestige. We have just been treated, […]


James 1:12-18

Download audio Download sermon James 1:12-18 James has already told us to “count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness.” By steadfastness is meant a persevering faith in Christ, the kind of faith that continues to believe, that continues […]


Not Again?! Acts 4:32-5:11

Download audio Download sermon Acts 4:32-5:11 In this case, the chapter division is not well placed. Remember, the Bible was not divided into chapters until a thousand years after Christ, so these divisions are hardly original to the biblical text. Some are better than others. We ought to begin a new chapter in v. 32 […]


James 1:5-11

Download audio Download sermon James 1:5-11 One thing that any interested reader of commentaries on the letter of James immediately notices is the widespread frustration of scholars who have looked long and hard to find some principle of organization in the letter. The Gospels are organized in a largely chronological way, the report of the […]


Christian Courage Acts 4:23-31

Download audio Download sermon Acts 4:23-31 It is Reformation Day and for two reasons I have decided to continue our sermons in Acts rather than preach a sermon apropos that great theological and spiritual renewal of the 16th century, the event that created, however unintentionally, the Protestant Church of which, of course, Faith Presbyterian is […]


One Reason for Our Troubles James 1:1-4

Download audio Download text James 1:1-4 Text Comment v.1       “to the twelve tribes” has sometimes been taken to mean that the letter was addressed to particular Jewish Christian churches of whose situation James was informed. Others have taken the address to mean that James was intended to be a circular letter to Christian churches generally, […]


The Only Name Acts 4:1-12

Download audio Download sermon Acts 4:1-12 We read these verses last time and, indeed, to the end of the paragraph at v. 22. This morning we read the first twelve verses again in order to pay attention to Peter’s monumentally important statement in v. 12. As I commented on the text last Lord’s Day morning, […]


Introduction James 1:1-8

Download audio Download sermon James 1:1-8 I mentioned, in announcing this new series of evening sermons, that we would be studying the New Testament’s Book of Proverbs, or, at least, the book of the New Testament most like the book of Proverbs. I wonder how many of you guessed which book it is. Listen to […]


The Fact of Unbelief Acts 4:1-22

Download audio Download sermon Acts 4:1-22 A great miracle had been performed in a most public place. The news was spreading through the city and great excitement had overcome the crowds of people in the temple. We now learn what happened next. Text Comment v.2       The Sadducees were particularly annoyed by the apostles because they […]


A New Community Acts 2:42-47

Download audio Download sermon Acts 2:42-47 What we will now see is typical of Luke’s narrative style: a major narrative – in this case the Pentecost event – the miracle of tongues, Peter’s sermon, and the response of the people – is concluded by a short summary. Obviously Luke was constrained by the amount of […]


Meditation Psalm 119:97-104

Download audio Download sermon Psalm 119:97-104 We introduced our sermons on Psalm 119 by considering its literary character, an acrostic poem the structure of which serves as an aid to memorization, and its function, along with the other psalms, as an instrument of enculturation, the fashioning of mind and heart by the deep impression of […]


Pentecost Acts 2:1-21

Download audio Download sermon Acts 2:1-21 The disciples had been instructed by the Lord before his Ascension to wait in Jerusalem for the Holy Spirit to come upon them. This is what they did, spending their time in prayer and preparation as we saw last time. Text Comment v.1       Pentecost, the Old Testament’s Feast of […]


The Ascension Acts 1:1-11

Download audio Download sermon Acts 1:1-11 We’ve begun a new series of morning sermons on the Book of Acts and we come to the second paragraph; we are going to read from verse 1 to verse 11. Text Comment v.3       In the language of the Gospels and Acts “kingdom of God” refers to the sovereign […]