Sunday – February 26, 2017 Genesis 29:31 to 30:24 “Bridal Wars”

Sunday – February 26, 2017 – Read the Word on Worship

Sunday – February 26, 2017 Genesis 29:31 to 30:24 “Bridal Wars” from Sunrise Community Church on Vimeo.

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Genesis 30:1-3
Now when Rachel saw that she bore Jacob no children, she became jealous of her sister; and she said to Jacob, “Give me children, or else I die.” Then Jacob’s anger burned against Rachel, and he said, “Am I in the place of God, who has withheld from you the fruit of the womb?”

Family strife is no laughing matter. Sadly, even many Christian families are war zones. The Christian home should be the place, above all others, where God’s love and kindness are put into practice on a daily basis. Yet all too often, selfishness, bickering, anger, abusive speech, and even physical violence mark even Christian homes. We must obey the principles of God’s Word if we want families where there is peace, not war.

Family conflict is not a recent phenomenon. It has been with the human race since the fall. Our text in Genesis 30 shows us a portrait of a family at war. It’s startling when we realize that this was the family which God promised to bless and to use to bless all nations, the family from which the Savior would come. And yet a battle was raging. The story reads like a tennis match, with the advantage moving from court to court as the opponents desperately try to defeat one another.

We may be inclined to read this account of the struggles between Leah and Rachel and think of it as the “long ago” and the “far away” and thus of little application to us. Such could not be farther from the truth. There are differences between the culture of that day and our own, but, as one of my friends observed, the only difference between the practice of Jacob in his day and that in our own is that he lived with his four wives simultaneously, while we live with ours consecutively. We do with divorce what Jacob did with polygamy.

While it’s a bleak picture, the theme of God’s grace runs through it as a strong undercurrent. Jacob wasn’t living in submission to the Lord at this time. His wives were thoroughly self‑centered. Perhaps Moses included this story to humble the nation by showing them that God’s blessing on them was totally due to His grace, not to anything in them or their forefathers. God is faithful to accomplish His purposes, even through the deceitful actions of Laban and Jacob, and the jealous hatred of Jacob’s two wives. God is a God of grace. He used these sinful people to achieve His purposes. If God can work in and through these wicked and impatient individuals, He can work in and through you and me! But to receive God’s best results, He expects us to exercise patience and trust in Him.

Sunday – August 7, 2016 Genesis 9:18-27 “The Rest of the Story”

Sunday – August 7, 2016 – Read the Word on Worship

Sunday – August 7, 2016 Genesis 9:18-27 “The Rest of the Story” from Sunrise Community Church on Vimeo.

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Genesis 9:20-23
Then Noah began farming and planted a vineyard. 21 He drank of the wine and became drunk, and uncovered himself inside his tent. Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brothers outside.”

In Genesis 9:18-29, the history of Noah and his family moves from rainbows (9:12-17) to shadows. Paul Harvey would say, “Here, we learn ‘the rest of the story.’” Yet, one of many reasons I am convinced the Bible is God’s Word is because its authors never covers up the sins of the saints. They refuse to pull punches; instead, they flat-out tell it like it is! When Noah and his family were introduced for the first time, Moses wrote, “Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his time; Noah walked with God” (Gen 6:9). In the New Testament, Noah was called a “preacher of righteousness” (2 Pet 2:5). He is also included in the hall of faith of Hebrews 11. Noah was a great man of God. If Noah can sin, anyone can sin. This includes you and me. But the point of this story and the whole of Genesis is not merely that anyone can fall but that everybody does.

The time when most Christians fall is on the heels of a great victory. Man’s tendency is to ease up when the conflict lessens.  If it happened to Noah, it could happen to you. Whenever you feel like things are going especially well, beware. Stay humble. The apostle Paul says, “Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall” (1 Cor 10:12). We are very vulnerable people. Every Christian is capable of committing even the most heinous of sins. This is why we so desperately require the accountability of a local church and a small group of believers.

This account also serves as a reminder that it is possible for seasoned saints to stumble in the sunset years of their lives. Moses sinned late in his life by striking a rock and taking some of God’s glory to Himself; as a result, he was not permitted to enter to Promised Land. David sinned with Bathsheeba when he was in his fifties. Solomon departed from the will of God when he was old. Past successes do not provide power for future victory. The Bible teaches again and again that godly people can be tripped up before the finish line. This means we must recognize that the greatest of all believers have weaknesses.

The Christian is not a super saint. He is an ordinary person saved by grace. The people of God are upheld by God’s grace. If we are different it is because of the powerful support of God. If we are not upheld we can fall away at any moment. This reality should encourage you and me. If great men and women of God committed sin and God still used them, He can use you and me as well. We need to be honest and acknowledge that Christians are far from perfect but God always uses us in spite of ourselves. The only thing that makes us different is that we are sustained by God’s mercy. If God should let us go we could slip badly. Who can say what we would do if God lets us go?

Sunday May 12, 2013, Mother’s Day: Et Tu Mommy?

May 12, 2013 – Read the Word on Worship

Mother’s Day 2013: Et Tu Mommy? from Sunrise Community Church on Vimeo.

It is very easy for many to speak in glowing terms about their mother’s especially on Mother’s Day. But what about those who see Mother’s Day as a painful reminder? How does the young woman who has had an abortion or the young man who has know idea of what a father looks like because so many men have passed through their home because his mother’s immorality celebrate Mother’s Day? Jesus offers to call everyone who believes into a new family, a closer family, than any earthly experience we may have. Join us this week as we look at Jesus teaching on who is His mother and who are His brothers and sisters from Matthew 12 verses 46 to 50.


Word On Worship – May 12, 2013 Download / Print

Matthew 12:48-50
But Jesus answered the one who was telling Him and said, “Who is My mother and who are My brothers?”   And stretching out His hand toward His disciples, He said, “Behold My mother and My brothers!   “For whoever does the will of My Father who is in heaven, he is My brother and sister and mother.”

Every news story we read or see on television seems to hinge on morality. Whether the issue is over homosexual marriage, immigration reform, health care, or even taxation (even sugary drinks and obesity are now issues of morality in our state), there are denomination and special interest groups which have become very visible and very vocal in promoting their agendas. Even evangelicals have become active in proclaiming morality, patriotism, and fidelity to traditional American values. And so everyone, from the left to the right, is trying to grab the ear of a legislator to turn the morality of the nation in a direction they approve.

As Christians, we must be concerned about moral and ethical issues. God’s Word is unequivocal in its standards of righteous living, justice and social responsibility and we should reflect that same standard. But morality cannot be separated from a right relationship to God. In fact the Scriptures give us many examples of the dangers of morality separated from right relationship from God such as the Pharisees. They were committed to the highest human standard of religion and ethics and were so convinced of their self-righteousness that when God Himself lived amongst them they rejected Him and crucified Him. Their acts of morality only cleaned the outside of the cup, but never brought regeneration or redemption of the soul.

Being rightly related to Christ, however, requires more than self righteousness or a verbal promise of loyalty to God. Jesus warned the disciples in the Sermon on the Mount that “not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord’ will enter the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 7:21)  In fact many of these same people will point to incredible deeds and miracles they may even attribute to God. But these works of righteousness were not accompanied with a right relationship to the Lord. A saving relationship with Jesus Christ only comes from a submitting to Him and receiving the gift of salvation He offers.

Morality changes the outside of a person, in its best sense, but in some cases, it is barrier to the changes required of the heart. A right relationship with Jesus Christ brings about new life, both inside and outside. The central truth of the Scriptures is that Jesus Christ came to the earth to save sinners, which requires transformation not merely reformation. The message of the gospel, and also of the church, is not a call to clean living for the sake of morality, but a call to deliverance from sin through the atoning work of the Lord Jesus Christ.