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A Weekly Word from John
The Fruit of the Spirit: Peace

7/22/18 - The Fruit of the Spirit: Peace -John 14:25-27

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In John 14:25-27 Jesus is in the upper room with his disciples. His betrayal and death are only hours away. He knows it’s coming, so tells them about the Holy Spirit who will come alongside them as their counselor and advocate in order to give them peace. What a wonderful promise – that peace isn’t something we need to find or pursue, it’s something we receive. That’s an important distinction, isn’t it? Peace isn’t just “out there” to be earned when you figure out the secret to peacefulness. Instead, as Ephesians 2:14 reminds us, “he himself is our peace.” If you are a Christian then you have received the Holy Spirit who has united you with Christ, and Christ himself is our peace!

 

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The Fruit of the Spirit: Joy

7/15/18 - The Fruit of the Spirit: Joy - Romans 14:17

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Joy,

What is it? Some say joy is synonymous with happiness. But is it?

As I sit on my bed with my wife and daughter, looking at the wonder of our four week old foster daughter, my heart is glad because of the love that surrounds her, shown through my wife and children. We are doing what we can for her future and this little eight pound person brings great gladness into our home.

 

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The Fruit of the Spirit: Love

7/8/18 - The Fruit of the Spirit: Love - 1 Corinthians 13

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1 Corinthians 13 is most often read at weddings, and I’ve used it in many wedding sermons myself, but it isn’t actually focused on marriage-love. Instead, it’s a description about how every Christian is supposed to treat each other. This famous chapter comes immediately after 1 Cor. 12 where Paul addresses spiritual gifts, especially the supernatural gifts of tongues and prophecy, and then concludes, “And I will show you a still more excellent way” (12:31).

 

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The Fruit of the Spirit: An Introduction

7/1/18 - The Fruit of the Spirit - Galatians 5

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What do you think or how do you feel if someone says, “I want to be like you.”?

If one of my kids or a friend says, “Hey, I want to do what you do!” Isn’t the receiving end blessed?

When a person hears about theFruit of the Spiritin Galatians 5 ;22-23 often those verses or phrases are taken out of context as stand alone moral precepts or character qualities to aspire to. But to better appreciate the power, intent and blessing of those traits we need to understand the context. We cannot belike Christ truly by our own determination. We need the power of Christ living through us.

 

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Malachi

6/24/18 - Malachi

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Every year EBC’s Food Pantry receives large donations of food that must be sorted before it can be stored and distributed. You may be surprised by the amounts of expired food donated every year. For a number of reasons, we cannot accept and distribute these donations, but even if we legally could… we wouldn’t. What does it say to the family who receives a bag full of food that no one wanted anyway? In these cases, the donation was really just another trash bag – but instead of going to the dumpster, it came to the food pantry. This is hardly a sacrificial gift that reflects a compassionate and gracious heart.

 

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Zechariah

6/17/18 - Zechariah

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What would you think or do if someone said, “God is going to come and live with you.”?  You would probably pause and consider your ways or you would think that whoever uttered those words were nuts. Yet, in the context of what the Israelites had just heard from Haggai they were probably inclined to believe the former.

 

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Emmanuel Baptist Church
PO Box 145 · 63 Rockwood Road (Route 115) · Norfolk · MA 02056
508-528-5862 · office@ebcnorfolk.org