SERMON: SONG OF SONGS 6:4-8:4

1384052_96465285Sermon I preached on Song of Songs 6:4-8:4 at Banstead Community Church on 5th July 2015.

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1. His love for us is unchanging

2. His love for us is greater than we first thought

More sermons can be found HERE

(Photo: theswedish)

BEST ACCOMPLISHED WHEN YOU STAY WITH THE SAME CONGREGATION

70HPaul Lamey:

“I believe the following are best accomplished when the pastor is committed to staying with the same congregation:

1) Preaching through books of the Bible (Acts 20:27; 2 Tim 4:1–5): Preaching expositionally and sequentially through books of the Bible takes time, and preaching the “whole counsel of God” is simply not possible with the average pastoral tenure of only a few short years.

2) Training the next generation of leaders (2 Tim 2:2): it is incumbent upon current pastors and elders to take the long-view toward cultivating future leaders from among their own congregation.

3) Shepherding the flock (Acts 20:28; 2 Cor 12:15; 1 Pet 5; 1 Thess 5:14; Gal 6): Faithful shepherding requires an extended commitment to encourage the faint-hearted, strengthen the weak, and restore the wayward. A lengthy tenure helps to develop the trust of the sheep.

4) Modelling an exemplary home life (1 Tim 3:4–5): An enduring commitment is also a blessing to your wife and children as they put down roots of ministry in one place without having to start over every few years.

5) Protecting the flock from false teachings (Acts 20:28; 1 Tim 1:13; 2 Tim 4:3–4; Titus 1:9): Pastors are called to be guardians of the trust, nourishing the flock on sound doctrine and keeping them away from error and unhealthy trends. Longevity allows the pastor to develop the trust necessary to effectively guide and guard his people.

6) Developing patterns of faithfulness (Acts 20:19; 1 Cor 4:16; 11:1; Phil 3:17; 1 Pet 5:6): When you stay in the same place for a long time, the congregation can observe and follow the patterns of your ministry (Phil 3:17).”

(Photo: Ryan McGuire)

LATEST LINKS

Links10 links to check out over the weekend…

(Photo: Ryan McGuire)

FIRST IMPRESSIONS MATTER

freely-10001Scott Tones:

“Ministry environments include the carpark, foyer, children’s check in process, greeters and hosts, worship times, coffee and sermons but also family times and promotions.

Every environment communicates a message:

Cleanliness communicates “we were expecting you”

Organisation communicates “we are serious about what we are doing here”

Attention to detail communicates “we value you”

Can you imagine environments that people describe as “this is a place I will invite my friends and they will love it!”

First impressions matter.”

(Photo: Freely Photos)

GENERALLY WE ARE NOT CALLED AWAY FROM A PEOPLE

old-bicycleJohn MacArthur:

“We are, generally, not called away from, but called to a people.

Leave your current ministry for another only if you have a true calling to that other place.

The fact that a new opportunity pays better, has a larger facility, promises respite from current problems, or provides a platform for greater influence, doesn’t necessarily make it a right move and can play to ambition.

So make sure that when you leave, your reasons are spiritually compelling.

And also, do your best to ensure the flock you leave behind is well taken care of before you go.  That is a vital part of your legacy.”

(Photo: Dave Meier)

THEY NEED A PASTOR

IMG_1293 (2)Daniel Darling:

“You need to know your people and they need to see you as their pastor. It’s important… Everyone today says that visits are a thing of the past, but I’m telling you that they are important.

As much as God’s people need a preacher, they need a pastor.

And if you are going to be a pastor, you have to be a shepherd.  You must ascend to the pulpit with the weight of their burdens and their brokenness on your shoulders.  

There are a lot of good preachers today, men who faithfully declare what God has already said about Himself.  But there are far fewer pastors.  Men who are living in faithful and broken gospel community with their people.

There is a temptation to isolation for pastors who labor long and hard to craft substantive, weighty, gospel-rich sermons.  We can get so cloistered in our study with our books that we stay removed from the people we are called to serve.

While it is important to have structured and jealously guarded time for study, it’s equally important – for our preaching – to live among our people.

If we have not spent precious time with our people, hearing their struggles, listening to their concerns, understanding their day-to-day work lives—we’ve failed.

We’ve become producers of biblical content, preachers, but not shepherds.”

(Photo: butkovicdub)

BIBLE STUDIES: WHAT IS GOD LIKE?

freely-10147Here is a series of Bible studies I put together for the 16-21s group at Banstead Community Church on what God is like.  Each study builds on the previous one.

More Bible studies can be found HERE.

(Photo: Ricky Rew)

TASKS REQUIRED IN THE TRUE CARE OF SOULS

34HMartin Bucer:

“There are five main tasks required in the pastoral office and true care of souls.

First: to lead to Christ our Lord and into his communion those who are still estranged from him, whether through carnal excess or false worship.

Secondly: to restore those who had once been brought to Christ and into his church but have been drawn away again through the affairs of the flesh or false doctrine.

Thirdly: to assist in the true reformation of those who while remaining in the church of Christ have grievously fallen and sinned.

Fourthly: to re-establish in true Christian strength and health those who, while persevering in the fellowship of Christ and not doing anything particularly or grossly wrong, have become somewhat feeble and sick in the Christian life.

Fifthly: to protect from all offence and falling away and continually encourage in all good things those who stay within the flock and in Christ’s sheep-pen without grievously sinning or becoming weak and sick in their Christian walk.”

(Photo: Ryan McGuire)

MOBILISING YOUR STUDY

S3JE5YAMNDLeon Brown:

“One way you can meet people in the community for whatever reason is by mobilising your study. 

While there are certain things a pastor wants to do in his study behind closed doors (e.g. pray), there are things he can do in public. For example, you can prepare sermons in public… you can sends emails in public. 

Mobilising your study to a local public meeting place is one way for pastors to get to meet people in the community.”

(Photo: Luis Llerena)

10 OF THOSE TUESDAY

PreachingEvery Tuesday I want to highlight on this blog a great resource that is available from 10ofthose.com and some great deals for you to check out.

This week’s resource is a long awaited book by Tim Keller: Preaching: Communicating Faith in a Skeptical Age.

Christopher Ash finished his review of the book by saying “We should be grateful to Keller for his wisdom, scholarship, and humility.”

Preaching is available to buy HERE.

And while you’re visiting 10ofthose.com you might like to check out the latest offers on a number of resources including a new series called ‘Brief Books’.