Author Archives: Jonny Raine

Genesis & Revelation

In a nice synthesis, we’ll be tackling both the first and the last books of the Bible this coming Autumn.

As we continue in our Origins series for Sunday mornings, we’re looking at the times of Abraham.

1 September Genesis 11:27-12:20 Promises, Promises
8 September Genesis 13:1-14:24 Relative Trouble
15 September Genesis 15:1-21 Righteousness by Faith
22 September Genesis 16:1-16 The Un-Immaculate Conception
29 September Genesis 17:1-27 Marked Assurance
13 October Genesis 18:1-15 Funny Assurance
20 October Genesis 18:16-33 Praying for a Perverse Place
27 October Genesis 19:1-38 Fleeing from a Perverse Place
3 November Genesis 20:1-21:7 A Legit Baby is Born
10 November Genesis 21:8-34 Well Prepared
24 November Genesis 22:1-19 Laying it all on the Altar
1 December Genesis 23:1-20 Preparing a Funeral
8 December Genesis 24:1-67 Finding a Wife (before Online Dating)
22 December Gen 25:1-18 Not the End of the Line

Then in our evenings we’re tackling Revelation in a long series that will take us beyond Easter.

1 September Revelation 1:1-8 The Revelation
8 September Revelation 1:9-20 I saw a new Vision of Jesus
15 September Revelation 2:1-7 The Church that Lost its Love
22 September Revelation 2:8-11 The Poor-Rich Church
29 September Revelation 2:12-17 The Church where Satan Lives
6 October Revelation 2:18-29 The Immoral Church
13 October Revelation 3:1-6 The Dead Church
20 October Revelation 3:7-13 The Weak Church
27 October Revelation 3:14-22 The Lukewarm Church
3 November Revelation 4:1-11 Sovereign Lord
10 November Revelation 5:1-14 Worthy is the Lamb
24 November Revelation 6:1-17 History is Opened
1 December Revelation 7:1-8:1 A Crowd in White Robes
15 December Revelation 8:2-9:21 Here come the Trumpets

Summer Sundays

Storytime: Parables in Matthew's Gospel

Coming up on Sunday mornings in the summer, we will be looking at some of the parables in Matthew. The sermons will be child friendly involving interaction for them. Here are the plans:

21 July Matthew 13:1-23 The Scattered Seed
28 July Matthew 18:21-35 The Mean Servant
4 August Matthew 20:1-16 The Wicked Workers
11 August Matthew 22:1-14 The Wedding Guests
18 August Matthew 25:14-30 The Good Stewards

Then in the evenings, we’re carrying on in the Psalms for our Summer Songs. Don’t forget to see if you can identify the popular music song titles in the sermon titles! As follows:

21 July Psalm 51 Bathsheba Blues
28 July Psalm 52 Braggin’ & Boastin
4 August Psalm 53 Fool Again
11 August Psalm 54 For My Help
18 August Psalm 55 Fear and Trembling

Sundays Coming Up

We have two new sermon series coming up on Sunday. Here are the details:

On Sunday mornings, we’re going to be spending 11 weeks looking at the 10 Commandments. We’ll be seeing God’s love for us on the law and our responsive requirements to love God and other people.

28 AprExodus 20:1-2Intro: Love Law
5 MayExodus 20:3#1 Love God
12 MayExodus 20:4-6#2 Love God’s Image
19 MayExodus 20:7#3 Love God’s Name
26 MayExodus 20:8-11#4 Love Rest
2 JuneExodus 20:12#5 Love Parents
9 JuneExodus 20:13#6 Love Life
16 JuneExodus 20:14#7 Love Fidelity
23 JuneExodus 20:15#8 Love Equity
7 JulyExodus 20:16#9 Love Truth
14 JulyExodus 20:17#10 Love Contentment

Having written to the Thessalonian church already, Paul found it necessary to follow it up with another letter in order to clarify and correct things. For our evenings, this book will help us to grow in our confidence of these last days that we live in.

28 Apr2 Thessalonians 1:1-12Keep Going
5 May2 Thessalonians 2:1-12Don’t Worry
12 May2 Thessalonians 2:13-17Hold Fast
19 May2 Thessalonians 3:1-5Be Confident
26 May2 Thessalonians 3:6-18Work Hard

Appreciating God’s Law

King David was able to say, “O how I love your law, I meditate on it all day long.” He also says “I delight in your commands” and that “The law from your mouth is more precious to me that thousands of pieces of silver and gold” (Psalm 119:97, 47 & 72). He even described the law as “refreshing the soul” and “sweeter than honey” (Psalm 19:7 & 10)

If we’re honest, we would probably be inclined to disagree, even though we know we shouldn’t. Or maybe we try to be theological about it and say that this was just because David was in the Old Covenant. But really, we ought to cultivate the same kind of appreciation for God’s law as David had. After all, Jesus didn’t come to abolish the law but to fulfil it (Matthew 5:17). That doesn’t mean it has the same application for us as it did for God’s people before Jesus, but it still has some purpose for us in which we should delight.

In our most recent Men’s Book Group, the author of the book we’re studying wrote this: “Christians often speak of the three uses of the law. The first is to lead us to Christ by convicting us of sin. The second is to restrain wickedness in the world. The third is to help us to learn the nature of the Lord’s will, acting as a kind of blueprint for holiness” (‘Hole in our Holiness’ by Kevin de Young, page 50.)

With the law explained in these three ways, it clearly has abiding significance for us. We still need our sin pointing out, society still needs restraining and we certainly need to see God’s holy nature, which never changes. But there is also something significant that changes in the coming of Jesus.

Another article I read recently (ftc.co/blog/posts/christ-fulfilled-the-law) was pondering how the law was that which made it possible for a holy God to dwell amongst his unholy but saved people in the Old Testament without them being obliterated and dying – by following the 613 commandments. But as they couldn’t fully keep the law, God’s presence left the Temple and left his people. But Jesus makes it possible for God to dwell amongst us, by granting us his righteous fulfilment of the law as if our own righteousness, and so he lives in the believer by his Spirit.

But we know from the New Testament that the Old Testament law doesn’t apply to us in the same was as it did before Jesus came (see for example, Acts 10 & 15, Galatians 2 & 4, Romans 6). But the law is also not negated. How then it carries over to us today requires carefully consideration.

So, beginning at the end of this month, we’re going to spend eleven weeks tackling the Ten Commandments from Exodus 20. We’ll spend the first sermon introducing them, and then the next ten weeks taking one commandment at a time.

Graham Beynon, pastor of Grace Church in Cambridgeshire, who also preached through the Ten Commandments and then wrote a book about them, he said this: “For me, and for the church, there was a sense of rediscovering the Ten Commandments, and so coming to appreciate and value them afresh.” (‘Surprised by the Commandments’ page xii.) I pray that the same will be true for us.

(photo credit: Joshua Daniel O. 10 commandments via photopin (license))