Sermons on Acts

Pentecost: Liberation Day

Join us this week as we celebrated Pentecost together! Chris speaks on the circumstances surrounding the revelation of the Holy Spirit to the disciples in Jerusalem and its happening at a significant point in the Jewish calendar, how God pre-prepared for that moment by decreeing the festivals to be celebrated thousands of years beforehand. The people in Jerusalem heard God speaking through the disciples gathered there. That same Spirit enables us to hear from God too. What have you heard recently?

As Susan was unwell, Chris also leads the rest of the service with a reflection on how the Spirit cannot be contained and is like a breath and fire. Lynne and Dave lead our sung worship.

Acts 11, Part Two

This week in our Acts series we see the focus shifting from Peter to the spread of the Gospel to the north of Israel in Antioch (on the modern day Turkish/Syrian border) and Barnabas’ mission to bring encouragement and teaching to the newly-named Christian community there. During his time in Antioch Barnabas recruits Saul, who the apostles had previously sent to Tarsus, to join him. This initial spread of Christianity may have seemed random and disorganised but – as Chris encourages us – God often uses disorder to bring forward his purposes. What apparent disorder can we see today that God is working through?

Andy leads the rest of the service as we invite the Holy Spirit to take away all our inhibitions and Lynne and Dave lead our sung worship.

Acts 11, Part One

This week in our Acts series we find Peter returing to Jerusalem from Caesarea and reporting back to the church what had happened before and during his visit to Cornelius. We see a reiteration of his belief that God has opened up the Holy Spirit to the Gentiles, and Chris looks at why this may have been a challenge to the Jewish believers. He also explains that – as most of us in the west are Gentiles – in accepting Jesus we are also grafted into the (historic) people of Israel and can share in their promised inheritance.

Susan leads the rest of the service whilst Pete and Nick lead our sung worship.

Acts 10

We continue with our study of the book of Acts this week as Chris leads us through Acts 10. Up until now the church had been composed of what we would now call Messianic Jews – Jews who have accepted the grace of Jesus. But now with Peter’s vision and visit to Cornelius it is abundantly clear that the message is not just for the Jews but the Gentiles too. God reveals to Peter that his gift of the Holy Spirit is for all, Jew and Gentile alike. And thank goodness for that, because it means us too!

Karen leads the rest of the service as we pray for our Mission of the Month, Home Mission, whilst Mike and Lynne lead our sung worship.

Acts 9, Part Three

Chris continues our study of the book of Acts, this week closing out chapter 9 back with Peter as Luke recounts his journeys to Lydda and Joppa and the miraculous signs that were performed there. First we hear about the healing of Aeneas who had been paralysed for 8 years, and then the raising of Tabitha from the dead in Joppa. In both cases God used these miracles as the catalyst for even more, as the news of Jesus continued to spread in Israel and beyond.

Karen leads the rest of the service as Lynne gives an update on our Mission of the Month, YFC, and Pete leads our sung worship. We also share communion together.

Acts 9, Part Two

This week we return to our series in Acts, specifically looking at what Saul (Paul) does immediately after his experience with Jesus on the road to Damascus. Chris looks at Saul’s new calling to preach what would then have been an extremely radical message in Damascus, Arabia and Jerusalem: that Jesus is the risen Son of God!

Andy leads the rest of the service as we celebrate and pray for the women of the church in the light of Mother’s Day (aka Mothering Sunday) and International Women’s Day this past week. Lynne and Dave lead our sung worship.

Acts 9, Part 1

This week we resume our series in Acts, which we began last summer. If you can’t remember back that far (the last part was in September after all!) Chris gives us a brief catch-up on what has happened so far before we look at Saul’s encounter with Jesus on the road to Damascus. This is the start of the amazing turnaround in Saul’s life from being one of the chief persecutors of early Christianity to becoming probably the most prolific evangelist in church history. God can use anyone!

Karen leads the rest of the service whilst Pete leads our sung worship this week.

Acts 8, Part 2

In the final part of our first look at Acts (don’t worry, we won’t be pausing for long!) Chris ends with the second half of Acts 8 where Philip encounters the Ethiopian eunuch. Starting with the passage from Isaiah that the eunuch “happened” to be reading Philip explains the whole of the good news about Jesus and, having heard this, the eunuch is so filled with the Holy Spirit that he asks to be baptised there and then. As Philip was led to the eunuch that day, how is God guiding us in our journeys today?

Chris also leads us through a guided prayer to help us in our understanding of the scripture, whilst Mike and Lynne lead our sung worship.

Acts 7 & 8

The story of Acts continues this week with the recounting of Stephen’s vision of Jesus being welcomed into heaven and his subsequent execution by the Sanhedrin for blasphemy. These events trigger a great persecution of the early church and scattering of the believers from Jerusalem. However as Chris explains, this is not a defeat! It is stage 1 of God’s great plan to start spreading the message of the Gospel beyond Judea. Philip, Peter and John travel to Samaria where the Holy Spirit breaks out in a powerful way. How are we to reflect the power of the Spirit in our lives? And how did all of these events affect a young Pharisee named Saul?

Andy leads the rest of the service, speaking about his experience of God in recent travels whilst Mike leads our sung worship.

Acts 7

We left the story of Acts last time with Stephen, one of the most Spirit-filled disciples encountered so far, arrested and brought before the Sanhedrin to stand trial. This week Chris looks at what he says in his defence, his sermon before the ruling officials. Stephen takes the accusations levelled at him and systematically demolishes every single one, showing that God’s Spirit was behind everything in the Law that the Sanhedrin profess to follow and also that the Spirit cannot be contained behind legalism and restraint. God’s power is active everywhere! What does that mean for us today?

Susan leads the rest of the service with prayers for the developing situation in Morocco, whilst Pete and Nick lead our sung worship.