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False Christs: Jesus, the option among many

Pastor Armstrong's lenten sermon series: Will the real Jesus please stand up? False Christs in the world and in the church.

“Our false Christ of the week:  ‘Jesus, the option among many’”

I.   ________________________:  the belief that all     religions are equally good and are equally valid ways to God.  Therefore, Jesus is just one option among many others.

A. Emphasizes the _______________ among religions (morality) but neglects the __________________.  

B. It is nothing new (e.g. ancient Israel and      ancient Rome). 

C. It is an _____________ and it _______________ itself.  (Illus. “The Blind Men and the Elephant”).

II.  ________________:  the belief that there is only one true religion or way to God. 

A. This applies to all truth, all religions, and all  people, including atheists. 

B. Jesus alone claimed to be God, and He      corroborated that claim by _______________, ____________________________,                     by ____________________________, and   by _____________________________.

C. Jesus did not say, “___________________ is the way, the truth and the life,” but “_______ am the way, the truth and the life.”


Jesus, you’re fired!

Pastor Armstrong's sermon is based on Luke 13:31-35.

“Jesus, you’re fired!  How Christ responds to rejection” (Luke 13:31-35)

I.  Those whom God _________________, humanity _______________ (Isaiah 53:3-6).

A. It was true of the prophets, and it’s true of ____________ (v.34; Jeremiah  26:8-15).

B. It’s true of _______ (John 17:11, 14-15).

II.  Our response to rejection is __________________________ (Luke 9:51-56). 

III. Jesus’ response to rejection is _________________________ ___________________________ (vv.34-35; Luke 23:34). 

IV. Because we reject God, He must extend His reign by _______________ and ________________.


False Christ's: Jesus the Cheerleader

Pastor Armstrong's lenten sermon series: Will the real Jesus please stand up? False Christs in the world and in the church.

“Our false Christ of the week:  ‘Jesus, the cheerleader’”

I.   The problem:  a faulty worldview:  ethical         hedonism—_____________, rather than God’s Word, constitute truth.  

A. This false Christ/idol exalts _____________ and avoids __________, always cheering you on in the pursuit of ________________ (2 Timothy 4:3-4).

B. This false Christ/idol avoids _________________ and any mention of __________. 

II.   The result:  you have no need of the real Jesus.

A. You will not call on the doctor unless you realize you are _________ (Mark 2:17).

B. Avoiding the Law encourages ________________ (1 John 3:4).

III.  The solution:  we don’t __________ people into the faith, we confess ___________________. 

A. Jesus is not a _____________, He is    objective, unchanging __________ (John 14:6). 

B. He proclaims both __________________ and sin’s _________________ (Mark 1:17; Matthew 25:41).

C. He came to call not the “righteous,” but _______________ (Luke 5:32; 1 John 1:8-9; Romans 5:20). 


Toxic righteousness

Pastor Armstrong's sermon is based on Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18.

"Toxic righteousness" (Matthew 6:1-6, 16-18)

I.   Your righteousness (piety/good work) can be ________________ to you when:

A. you do it to be “__________________” (“theathenai autois” or “theater to them”);

B. in this way, you become a “______________ “(“hypokrites” or “hypocrite”). 

1. “Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall” (King Solomon in Proverbs 16:18).

2. “Pride (vainglory) is the source of all sin without            exception.”  (St. Thomas Aquinas)

3. “Our righteousness is more dangerous than our _______.” (Dr. Martin Luther)

II.   We were made to notice and to be noticed by ________. 

A. He has become our true Father and we His adopted children through the ministry of His unique Son (Galatians 4:4-5;       Romans 8:29).

B. As our true Father, He _______________ what we do in secret (vv. 4,6,18).

C. The desire to be noticed by God is ___________.

D. The desire to be noticed by others is ____________ in God’s ability to notice.

III.  Our Father’s rewards are rewards of grace.

A. They are not __________________ but freely given by God (Luke 17:10).

B. They ________________ whatever service is rendered (Matthew 19:29; 25:21,23).


The ‘Son of God’ makes us ‘sons of God

Pastor Armstrong's sermon is based on Luke 9:28-36.

“The ‘Son of God’ makes us ‘sons of God’”  (Luke 9:28-36)

I.    What does it mean to be the only-begotten (one-of-a-kind) “Son of God”?  (See v. 35; John 1:18.)

Verse 35:

“This” = the One who will accomplish His __________________ in Jerusalem ( v. 31).

“is” = is.

“My” = _________________. 

“Son” = the ________, the One who ___________ everything (Psalm 2:7-8; Hebrews 1:2). 

“My” = (see above).

“chosen One” = “selected in the past as the most ___________________.”

(NOTE:  God’s choices are never ____________, they are      always _____________.)

“Listen to Him” = “If you want to know Me, God the Father, don’t come to Me, you go to _______.”  (1 Timothy 6:16; John 1:18; 3:35)

II.   What difference does it make?

A. God sends His one-of-a-kind Son into the world to redeem ___________ (1 Corinthians 10:1-4; Galatians 4:3-4).

B. Through our Baptism and our faith in the _______________ of God’s one-of-a-kind Son, God the Father has made us His ____________ sons (Galatians 3:26-27; 4:5).


Unnatural acts: the transforming power of grace

Pastor Armstrong's sermon is based on Luke 6:32-38.

“Unnatural acts:  the transforming power of grace” (Luke 6:27-38)

I.   “Natural” acts include:

A. physical reflexes ________________________________;

B. emotional reflexes __________________________ (see also vv.32-34).

II.  “Unnatural” acts (vv.27, 36):

A. come naturally to ______________________ (v.36);

1. Jesus preaches what He ________________ (vv. 27-31, 35-38);

2. Whatever He _________ of us He first _________ for us (Matthew 16:24; John 13:1-15);

B. come naturally to those who have received mercy (Luke 7:47; 19:1-10). 

1. You and your enemies share:

a. the same ____________  (Romans 2:1);

b. the same ____________  (1 Timothy 2:5-6).

2. His mercy _______________ us to be merciful (v.36).


Blessed are the beggars

Pastor Armstrong's sermon is based on Luke 13:31-35.

Blessed are the beggars (Luke 6:17-26) 

I.   Jesus is present and touchable in our Gospel.  His flesh is real and it has power to ______________ (vv.17-19).

II.  Who are the poor, the hungry, the weeping (vv.20-23)?  ____________________________________

A. They have left everything (Luke 5:11).

B. The “poor” (“ptochoi”) literally means “______________.“ 

1. It is a shameful condition of dependency and helplessness which ___________ called them into.   

2. This is the most extreme form of poverty (see Luke 9:3). 

a. It teaches dependence on God.

b. It is an effective evangelism strategy (“The Ben Franklin Effect”).

III. Who are the rich, the full, the laughing (vv.24-26)? ____________________________________________

IV. God exceedingly fair and merciful to all people in Christ (Luke 16:25).

A. The Beatitudes are _____________ _ promises to all who suffer because of their connection to Christ.

B. The Woes are _______________ promises to all who love this present world more than Christ and His kingdom: “You have received your consolation” (v.24). 

V.  Jesus is present and touchable for you today.

A. He calls us to confess our own dependency and helplessness (John 15:5).  “We are beggars, this is true.”  (Martin Luther)

B. His Beatitudes attract us into the kingdom of God by         removing the _____________ of dependency and giving _____________ to helplessness.

C. We share in ___________ of the same Jesus who imparts His life to us (Matthew 26:26; John 6:54).