Morning Bible Study
Luke was a doctor
and a travelling companion of the apostle Paul.
He wrote this book
while Paul was in prison.
In writing his
book, Luke made use of other older documents like the Gospel of Mark, as well
as extensive eyewitness accounts.
Jesus’ ministry has
begun, and the people have been amazed not just at the things He’s been
teaching, but the things He’s been doing.
:1 Then He called
His twelve disciples together and gave them power and authority over all
demons, and to cure diseases.
:2 He sent them to
preach the kingdom of God and to heal the sick.
:2 to preach the
kingdom of God
to preach – kerusso – to be a herald, to proclaim openly something which has
This is the same
word that was used to describe what Legion did when he returned home after
Jesus cast out all the demons. Jesus had
8:39 NKJV) “Return to your own house, and tell what great things God has done
for you.” And he went his way and proclaimed throughout the whole city what
great things Jesus had done for him.
It’s interesting to me that Legion was “preaching” before
the apostles did.
“Preaching” isn’t just for professionals. If Jesus has
done something in your life, you can tell others about it.
Matthew tells us
only a little bit more about what the message was they were to share.
(Matthew 10:7 NKJV) And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’
From time to time you will run into people who will
criticize certain pastors and preachers for not “preaching the full message”.
You will see some of these fellows outside Angel Stadium
during the Harvest Crusade accusing Greg Laurie of not preaching the full
Correct doctrine is important.
I think there are
things that are important to be a part of what you believe.
We are all sinners
Our sin separates us from God
Jesus is God in human flesh
Jesus died in order to pay for our sins
You must turn from your sin and believe in Jesus to be
But you will not
see this complete list in every message recorded in the New Testament.
But to be honest, sometimes all a person needs is to hear
that they need Jesus in their lives.
People need to hear you tell them what you believe.
Video: OneTimeBlind – What I
:2 and to heal
isn’t just to talk to people, but to impact their lives, to bring healing.
Validating the message
God would use
miracles and ministry to the needy to validate the message they were preaching.
(Hebrews 2:4 NLT) And
God confirmed the message by giving signs and wonders and various miracles and
gifts of the Holy Spirit whenever he chose.
God can use miracles or even a simple act of kindness in
Jesus’ name to make our words about Jesus ring true.
On Friday I had my
monthly Skype chat with Caleb Beller who is serving in Hungary.
One of the things
that has happened at the Bible College in Hungary over the last two months has
been the impact of the Syrian refugees travelling through Hungary.
When the situation
first began to develop, Caleb and his team felt that God was opening up a door
to share the gospel with these people.
They began going
out each night with whatever they could scrape up – initially food, water, and
warm coats. Some nights they brought hot
coffee to the refugees who were trying to walk across Hungary. As help poured in from Calvary Chapels around
the world, they began to provide tents, blankets, and toilets as well.
The BBC report made it look like Caleb was one of those
Syrian refugees trying to enter Hungary, when he was simply an aid worker
trying to help some hungry people.
Caleb said that at times he found himself being the one
person to bridge the gap between the thousands in front of him looking for
help, and the hundreds of Hungarian police behind him.
politicized the migrant crisis and have billed it as a huge Trojan Horse,
claiming that ISIS is sending young fighting men in with the fleeing migrants.
The Hungarian government was concerned that they were
unable economically to take care of the flood of immigrants and so they shut
off their border. Things got tense.
Video: BBC – Tear gas at Hungarian
Caleb was there and got his first exposure to tear gas
with the immigrants.
I’m not saying that isn’t possible there are ISIS fighters
in the crowds, but Caleb told me that he hasn’t seen this at all. He thought he had seen maybe one or two with
their Muslim prayer rugs out of all the thousands that have flowed through.
What he’s seen are families fleeing from the terror of
radical Islam. He’s found many Christians
who are fleeing for their lives – like this Christian from Iran who asked for
prayer to find his family, and ten minutes later they were reunited.
They have seen hundreds come to Christ as they have
brought help and love to these people.
These people are asking why Caleb’s group is helping
them. Some shared the visions and dreams
they had been having about Jesus.
They are not only giving people food and water, but they
can’t give out Bibles fast enough.
The migrant crisis
shifted when Hungary closed its borders, but the migrants are still coming,
flowing around Hungary through its neighboring countries. There are small Calvary Chapels in those
countries and they too are finding a great opportunity to share the gospel.
In America, we too
have an immigrant crisis of sorts.
I know that there
are all kinds of opinions in this room about what should be done with illegal
My intent is not to
make you into a Democrat or a Republican when it comes to immigration.
I’m not going to tell you they should be deported or they
should become U.S. citizens.
I simply want to
remind you that there is another kingdom that we belong to … God’s kingdom.
This is what will
happen one day when we stand before God:
(Matthew 25:34–40 NKJV) —34 Then the King will say to those on His right hand, ‘Come, you
blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation
of the world: 35 for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave
Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; 36 I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick
and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.’ 37 “Then the righteous will
answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or
thirsty and give You drink? 38 When did we see You a stranger and take You
in, or naked and clothe You? 39 Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and
come to You?’ 40 And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you,
inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did
it to Me.’
You don’t even have to go to Hungary to do this. Come out to the monthly food outreach in our
own parking lot.
Be careful that your politics don’t get in the way of
reaching out in Jesus’ name.
Your actions validate your message about Jesus.
:3 And He said to
them, “Take nothing for the journey, neither staffs nor bag nor bread nor
money; and do not have two tunics apiece.
:3 Take nothing
for the journey
On this first trip,
they were to pack very light. They were
to go depending completely on God to provide for their needs.
One of the ways God
would provide would be through the people they would minister to.
(Matthew 10:9–10 NKJV) —9 Provide neither gold nor silver nor copper in your money belts, 10 nor bag for your
journey, nor two tunics, nor sandals, nor staffs; for a worker is worthy of his
Dependence on God
If God is truly
guiding you into a venture of faith, He will provide for your needs.
Pastor Chuck used
to have a famous saying that went like this:
“Where God guides, God provides”
If God is guiding your steps, He will make sure you have
all that you need.
this particular trip for the disciples, God wants you to go even when you don’t
know where your support is going to come from.
I believe sometimes
God may want you to wait until you have all your support lined up.
Sometimes God will
lead you to do a ministry, and He will supply your needs with a full time job
on the side.
When I was 18, I
had had a sense that God was calling me into the full time ministry.
In the early
eighties I went into the prayer room at Calvary Costa Mesa to ask for prayer to
get into the ministry. Dave Rolph told
me, “Maybe you should start a Bible Study and plant a church.” I thought to myself, “No way”. That was too scary.
We ended up at
Calvary Anaheim, where I eventually became hired as an assistant pastor.
I had been an
assistant pastor at Calvary Chapel of Anaheim for eight years when Deb and I
began to feel that God was stirring us up to go out and plant a church.
At first we thought
about finding some small town in the middle of nowhere, but at the
encouragement of my pastor and the board of elders, we planted a church in the
town where I grew up, Fullerton.
I was scared at the
thought of planting a new church.
I liked the idea of having a steady income. Deb and I have worked our entire adult lives,
whether it’s her in her accounting, or me at various secular jobs and then full
At first I thought
we should wait and not give my notice at Calvary Anaheim until I had a group of
thirty families (David and his thirty mighty men) to go with me – I wanted to
be sure there was some sort of income coming in to support rent and perhaps
some income for me.
But I was teaching through Hebrews on Sunday nights, and I
came to the passage:
11:8 NKJV) By faith Abraham obeyed when he was called to go out to the place
which he would receive as an inheritance. And he went out, not knowing where he
I was convicted by the passage and Deb and I decided that
it was time to give our two-month notice at Calvary Anaheim.
By the time we had our first service on November 20, 1994
at the Fullerton YMCA, we had about thirty families with us for our first
For twenty-one years, God has provided.
:4 “Whatever house
you enter, stay there, and from there depart.
house you enter, stay there
I think the idea is
that they were not to go bouncing from house to house.
Stay where you
If someone invites
you to stay with them, then stay with them until you are done in that city.
(Luke 9:4 NLT) Wherever
you go, stay in the same house until you leave town.
Some people like to
bounce around from one house to the next, from one church to the next, looking
for something better. Sometimes it’s
better to find a place and stay.
:5 And whoever will
not receive you, when you go out of that city, shake off the very dust from
your feet as a testimony against them.”
:6 So they departed
and went through the towns, preaching the gospel and healing everywhere.
:5 shake off the
very dust from your feet
Whenever a Jew
visited a Gentile country, on their way home they would “shake off” the dust, indicating
that they wanted no part of the dirty, unworthy Gentiles.
Matthew tells us
that Jesus sent His disciples to preach exclusively to the Jews on this first
mission trip (Mat. 10:5-6)
If those Jews
didn’t respond openly to the gospel, the disciples were to show them that they
were acting like Gentiles.
Drop it and move on
Sometimes you have
to let it go.
When Paul and
Barnabas were on their first missionary journey, they stopped at the city of
Antioch in Pisidia.
They preached first
to the Jews in their synagogue, but when the Jews rejected their message, they
went on to preach to the Gentiles. Even
then, the Jews made things difficult…
(Acts 13:50–52 NKJV) —50 But the Jews stirred up the devout and prominent women and the
chief men of the city, raised up persecution against Paul and Barnabas, and
expelled them from their region. 51 But they shook off the dust from their feet
against them, and came to Iconium. 52 And the disciples were filled with joy and with
the Holy Spirit.
The disciples didn’t stay angry at those jerks. They moved on with joy.
It’s not up to you
to convince people of the truth of the gospel.
Your job is to
speak the truth and let God work on their heart.
It’s their job to respond.
I think it’s good
to have answers to sincere questions that people have, but some aren’t looking
for truth, they’re looking to argue or to ridicule.
A young woman teacher with obvious liberal tendencies
explains to her class of young students that she is an atheist. She asks her
class if they are atheists too. Not really knowing what atheism is but wanting
to be like their teacher, their hands explode into the air like fleshy
fireworks. There is, however, one exception. A girl named Lucy has not gone
along with the crowd. The teacher asks her why she has decided to be different.
“Because I’m not an atheist.” Then, asks the teacher, what are you? “I’m a
Christian.” The teacher is a little perturbed now, her face slightly red. She
asks Lucy why she is a Christian. “Well, I was brought up knowing and loving
Jesus. My mom is a Christian, and my dad is a Christian, so I am a Christian.”
The teacher is now angry. “That’s no reason,” she says loudly. “What if your
mom was a moron, and your dad was a moron. What would you be then?” A pause,
and a smile…. “Then,” says Lucy, “I’d be an atheist.”
To be honest, I hope we have better reasons than that to be
Bill Maher seems
the kind of person that would rather argue or ridicule than understand.
Video: Religulous – Ex Jew
Sometimes I think
we can do more damage by arguing with some people.
Some people just don’t want to lose an argument, and your
continual arguing can put them in a place where they won’t give you the
satisfaction of agreeing with you because of their own pride.
Sometimes all we
can do is plant seeds.
And seeds take time
We need to be sure
to hear from God about this.
Be careful that
it’s not your own anger or pride that makes you move on when God wants you to
But sometimes you
need to let it go.
John, and Jesus
:7 Now Herod the
tetrarch heard of all that was done by Him; and he was perplexed, because it
was said by some that John had risen from the dead,
:7 Herod the
tetrarch … was perplexed
Herod Antipas did
not like John the Baptist because John kept confronting Herod over his immoral
marriage to his brother’s wife.
Herod put John in
jail, and eventually had John beheaded.
:8 and by some that
Elijah had appeared, and by others that one of the old prophets had risen
:8 that Elijah
There was a prophecy
that the prophet Elijah would appear again, before the coming of the Messiah
suggesting that perhaps Jesus was Elijah come back.
:8 one of the
old prophets had risen again
Some were suggesting
that Jesus might have been one of the ancient prophets before Elijah, like
Samuel or David come back to life.
:9 Herod said,
“John I have beheaded, but who is this of whom I hear such things?” So he
sought to see Him.
:9 who is this
of whom I hear such things?
Herod had a
curiosity about Jesus.
looking for a Savior, Herod was looking for entertainment.
After Jesus was
arrested by the chief priest and put on trial, Herod got his chance to see
Jesus. (Luke 23:8-12)
He asked Jesus to
do a miracle, but Jesus wouldn’t do anything or even speak to Herod.
Herod got angry and
sent Jesus back to Pilate to be crucified.
Some people make
the mistake of thinking the Christianity is like all other religions, that it’s
all about the teachings of Jesus, just like Buddhism is about the teachings of
Buddha or Islam is about the teachings of Mohammed.
are important, but Christianity isn’t based on what Jesus says to do or don’t
based on the person of Jesus Christ.
He is God taking on
He came to this
earth for one reason – to die as a sacrifice to pay for the sins of the world.
He and He alone answers
the greatest need of man, to know God.
He answers that
need by removing the barrier that keeps us from God, our sin.
Being a Christian
isn’t just about finding a better way to live your life, it’s about finding
It’s about having
your sins forgiven.
It’s about knowing God.
Are you here today
to be entertained, or to find God?
(John 3:16 NKJV) For
God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever
believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.