Fundamentals of Faith

SERMON NOTES
5/15/2016
Rev. Dr. Jim Toole
1 John 5
1 John Sermon Series

FUNDAMENTALS OF FAITH

John repeats and repeats themes of believing in Jesus, loving each other and obeying His commandments. But each time he is looking at it from a slightly different perspective.

Theme: John calls us to believe, love, and obey.

John Stott looks at these repetitive themes as a circular pattern.

We cannot believe in Jesus without loving His children.
We cannot love Jesus without following His commands.

We cannot love His children without believing in Jesus.

We cannot believe in Jesus without loving His children.
1 Everyone who believes that Jesus is the Christ has been born of God, and everyone who loves the parent loves his children.

We cannot love Jesus without following His commands.
3 For the love of God is this, that we obey His commandments. And His commandments are not burdensome.

We cannot love His children without believing in Jesus.
John asserts over and over that our hope must be in our identity as Children of God where one day we will be with Jesus and like Jesus. This has to be at the center of our love. I shared that we cannot confess Jesus without love. But it goes both ways. As Christians we cannot love without our foundation in Jesus.

 

God's Love Overcomes

SERMON NOTES  
5/8/2016
Rev. Dr. Jim Toole
1 John 4
1 John Sermon Series

GOD'S LOVE OVERCOMES

All of us daily are bombarded with contradictory messages. We live in a culture where there is no central worldview rather a kaleidoscope of pluralistic beliefs and ideals. John is saying if you truly want to navigate the complexity of this world and the messages it presents, then Jesus does not just influence your lens, Jesus needs to be at the center.

1 John 4
Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God; for many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God,

Discernment is diakrisis: to test in crisis or to distinguish good and evil. It is to see to the heart of the matter with spiritual eyes.

4Little children, you are from God, and have conquered them; for the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.

Theme: Greater is the one who is in you than is in the world.

14And we have seen and do testify that the Father has sent his Son as the Savior of the world. 15God abides in those who confess that Jesus is the Son of God, and they abide in God. 16So we have known and believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and those who abide in love abide in God, and God abides in them.

John is going straight to the heart of what we call the Gospel. Jesus took the project evil of the world upon himself. For those who confess Jesus as Lord and Savior we can have the assurance that we have direct access to God and God abides in us.

Remember, greater is the one who is in you than is in the world.

 

 

Hope to Love

SERMON NOTES
5/1/2016
Rev. Dr. Jim Toole
1 John 3
1 John Sermon Series

HOPE LEADS TO LOVE

Now the early followers of Christ had an eternal perspective in their framework of faith. They put their hope not just in the present world but in the world promised to come.

Theme: John wants us to put our hope in our identity as Children of God where one day we will be with Jesus and like Jesus.

Hope in our identity as Children of God
Max Lucado shares that God not only forgives us but adopts us. Through the dramatic events of Jesus’ redemptive work on the cross we go from condemned orphans to adopted children.

Romans 8:15-16For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received a spirit of adoption. When we cry, “Abba! Father!” it is that very Spirit bearing witness with our spirit that we are children of God.

Hope in Eternity
John is saying to us that nothing he can say can prepare us as we come face to face with Jesus. John is saying when we see His face, eyes, smile and even His love for us we will know Him in a whole new way.

But let’s be clear, we do not just bask in our hope, rather we allow our hope to motivate us to love others.

HOPE LEADS TO LOVE
When we put our hope in our identity as Children of God where one day we will be with Jesus and like Jesus it allows us to simply follow Jesus in the present no matter the cost. When we see ourselves as God’s beloved then it gives us the strength to truly love others.

Getting Back to Jesus

SERMON NOTES  
4/17/2016
Rev. Dr. Jim Toole
1 John 2

1 JOHN SERMON SERIES

We are on our second week of our sermon series on 1 John. As I shared the first week it really is important to understand the context of this letter. The letter was written to churches where some false teachers were distorting views on Jesus. It was starting to create a large crisis and starting to fragment the church.

We need to get back to the teachings of Jesus. (1 John 2:1-2)

John right here at the beginning of his letter is building his argument on Who Christ is and what Christ has done on the cross. He wants to set the record straight. This foundation of who Christ is and what He has done allows us to then see what is expected of us as Christ followers.

We need to get back to the teachings of Jesus, but we also need to obey His teachings. (1 John 2:3-6)

John is saying if you want to know and perceive God it is not about understanding some secret knowledge, rather it is about obeying. As we obey what Jesus commanded we start to fully understand more of who God is.

We need to get back to the teachings of Jesus. But we also need to obey His teachings of loving one another. (1 John 2:7-11)

We are called not to just know the teachings of Jesus but to obey His teachings. One of Jesus’ primary teachings was about loving one another.

Questions for Reflection:

  1. How can we get back to Jesus’ teachings?
  2. What are some of the ways we as followers of Christ could be more obedient to Jesus’ teachings?
  3. What does it look like for you to embrace loving others more?

 

Certainty

SERMON NOTES  
Rev. Dr. Jim Toole
1 John 1
1 John Sermon Series

INTRODUCTION

Date _________ Writer________ Recipients________

John Stott claims the predominate theme of 1 John is Christian Certainty. There are many distortions of Faith, God and Jesus in our culture. So our hope is that we can journey through a simple five chapter letter to look at the essential fundamentals of Christianity.

The first essential theme of this chapter is that we can have certainty in the scriptural testimony of Jesus.

(1 John 1:1-2) We declare to you what was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands, concerning the word of life— this life was revealed, and we have seen it and testify to it, and declare to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was revealed to us.

The second essential theme of this chapter is that true fellowship is in Christ.

(1 John 1:3-4) We declare to you what we have seen and heard so that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. We are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.

The third essential theme of this chapter is that we have to recognize our sin and recognize it is only Jesus that can forgive and cleanse us.

(1 John 1:8-10) If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.