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Audio Sermons

Acts 19:1-20

Serving with Love

  The Unstoppable Word!

Life B-P Church Worship @ 8 & 11am, 2nd October 2016

Text: Acts 19:1-20

The Gospel has great power to change lives. God used Paul to plant and mightily propagate His Word that gave sinners victory over sin and Satan. They gave up all forms of idols, and made Jesus the Lord of their lives.

1.        The Word of God Planted (1-8)

a.       The Word of God was planted through personal witnessing. The 12 disciples of John the Baptist believed in Christ and were saved (1-7). All believers are called to share the gospel (Mt 28:18-20). 

b.      The Word of God was planted through public preaching. Paul preached in the synagogue for 3 months and some Jews believed. But hardened Jews resisted the truth.  Paul rented a big place - School of Tyrannus. Do you thank God for the people who shared the Gospel with you? Now it’s your turn. Pray and find opportunities to witness.  Invite them to our Gospel Sunday on 30 Oct, Sunday School and NBCs.

2.       The Word of God Propagated (9-10)

a.       The Word of God was propagated in its entirety. Paul spent more than two years in Ephesus to teach all the counsel of God (Acts 20:27) to the converts, leaders and seekers. Working from dawn to 11am as a tentmaker, Paul taught daily at the School of Tyrannus in the afternoon empty slot (11am to 4pm), when people nap. Sinners were saved.  Lives were changed. The Ephesian church was established.  Are you growing in the word of God? For a systematic study of God’s word, join our Bible College, Sunday School classes, Bible studies, NBCs, and fellowship groups. Many B-P churches began with a Sunday School class.

b.      The Word of God was propagated across Asia (26). From Ephesus the Gospel fanned outwards to all of Asia Minor (modern Turkey) as an unstoppable movement. Ephesus was the fourth largest city in the Roman Empire. Called the “temple-keeper”, due to its huge Temple of Diana, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world.  Tourists from all Asia flocked here on annual pilgrimage, and enjoyed the spas, the stadium sports, theatre shows and shopping.  Some attended Paul’s classes, got saved and brought the gospel back to their homes. That was possible how the seven churches of Asia were planted and established (Rev 2 and 3).  Some plant, others water, but God gives the increase (1 Cor 3:7).

3.       The Word of God Prevailing (20-40)

God’s Word prevails over the gods of magic and materialism.

a.   The Word of God Prevails over Magic (11-20)

·       Miracles of healings and exorcism were wrought by God through Paul’s sweatcloths and work aprons used in tent making (11-12).  It was God’s power, not magic.  Sceva’s sons who used Jesus’ name as a magic formula were wounded by the demon who knew the names of Jesus and Paul (13-17). Hence Jesus’ name was exalted. Fear of God came upon all. 1 Jn 4:4. 

·       Magicians were delivered from bondage to Satan. They confessed their sins, forsook their trade and burnt their expensive spell books worth 50,000 pieces of silver denarii (18-19). It was costly, but it was a strong testimony to their true faith.  Christians must have no part in the occult (Deut 18:10 -11): Pokemon Go, Ouija board, tarot cards, casting spells, or watching Charmed. Many books contain deadly poison. Be very careful in your reading and entertainment choices.  Whenever we repent, there must be a clean break from our sins.  Are there books, websites or music playlists that need to be ‘burnt’?

b.  The Word of God Prevails over Materialism (21-40)

·       The gospel does not interfere with business, unless the business is sinful. Demetrius ran a profitable Diana idol shrine business. Paul taught that “man-made idols are no gods at all”. The gospel was so powerful that it led to a sharp fall in Diana-worshippers and Demetrius’ profits. His god was not Diana, but the mighty Denarii. Idolaters were delivered from idol-worship and materialism. We must be honest with ourselves: is materialism our god?  He gathered his silversmiths and raised a riot against Christians. But God raised powerful friends to protect Paul and believers (31, 35-41). Prov 21:1.

The Word of God has great power to change us, provided we love it and study it. Then we can share it. When the word of God grows mightily and prevails, the whole society becomes more loving and noble. What part do you play in planting and propagating God’s Word? May God revive our hearts that souls will be saved and our country and Asia will be changed.  

Questions

1.        Who can you reach this week to share the gospel?

2.       Some Christians play with the occult.  May we heed God’s strong warning in Deut 18:10 -11 and Ex 22:16.

3.       Col 3:5 – 17 tells us how to “put off” sinful habits and “put on” godly ones.  What do you need to put off and put on?

 

4.      What is the idol that occupies your heart? 

Vision & Mission

 

To build a united church family that is committed to making disciples through Salvation, Sanctification and Service, to the glory of God.

Verse for the Week

October 15 & 22 - The Cost of Discipleship

For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. Matthew 16:25