01-14-18 Kevin Goins - Fearless!

Posted in sermon, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Christianity, Dr. Kevin Goins by facatl on January 14th, 2018

“Fearless!”  2 Timothy 1:6-8

We all have certain fears and these fears can keep us from doing the things we would really like to do. In fact, sometimes fear keeps us from doing the work God calls us to do. That is why at the beginning of this new ministry year we need to look at the handicap of fear. The Bible has an antidote to fear and it is found in our text for today.

I If you have never felt fear in carrying out your calling as a Christian, I want you to put yourself in the place of someone who did. Imagine you are pastor of the t______ l_________ Christian church in the first-century world.

   A. As pastor you have all the responsibilities that come with the job, but in addition to that, your church has some problems:

      1. Your church isn’t exactly a u_______ body of believers. There are groups within your church q__________ about what Christians should believe.

      2. The g_________ is putting pressure on you and your church.

  B. Timothy had to face all that and he wasn’t exactly a c_____________ personality with nerves of s_________. And he was y________ and had h________ p_______.

II After beginning his letter, Paul comes to the point in verse 6: “For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands.”

  A. There was a time in Timothy’s life when Paul laid his hands on him in prayer and asked God to give him a g_____ for m__________.

  B. The question for us is: Do we have the same e_________in our ministry today? If not we need to f____ the f_______.

III But it is hard to be enthusiastic when you are scared to death, so Paul goes on in verse seven to deal with fear:

  A. First, the n___________ - “God did not give us a spirit of fear.”

  B. After telling us what God hasn’t given us, he goes on to tell us what God has provided:

      1. P__________

      2. L________

      3. A s__________ m________

IV Finally, what is the result of this fearless approach to life? Answer: b_______ t__________.

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01-07-18 Kevin Goins - Christmas Isn’t Over!

Posted in sermon, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Christianity, Dr. Kevin Goins, Wisemen, Christmas by facatl on January 9th, 2018

“Christmas Isn’t Over!”
Matthew 2:1-18

Many evangelical Christians experience post-Christmas depression.  One reason they feel depressed is because they believe that Christmas ends at 12:00 am on December 26.  Not only does the Bible deny this, but so also did the early church.  They made sure not to limit Christmas to one day by extending the celebration until Epiphany, which takes place on January 6.  Epiphany commemorates the coming of the Wisemen to see the Christ child.  It is these same wisemen who can help us find a biblical solution for the depression that many feel when Christmas is over.  What do we learn from the wisemen?   

I First, the wisemen teach us that Christmas isn’t limited to o_____ d_____ a year.

II Second, the wisemen teach us that what is important is not what g______ we give, but to w_____ we give them.

III Third, the wisemen teach us to emphasize not only what we b_______ about Christmas, but how far we are willing to go to e________ those beliefs.

IV Fourth, the wisemen teach us that the Christmas story is our only hope for seeing j________ come to this world.

V Lastly, the wisemen teach us that Christmas c_________ people in the most significant ways.

 

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12-31-17 Jennifer Bliss-Criswell - Taking time to reflect

Posted in sermon, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Christianity, Meditation by facatl on January 2nd, 2018
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12-24-17 Kevin Goins The Forgotten Characters of Christmas part 3

Posted in sermon, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Christianity, Dr. Kevin Goins, Advent, Christmas by facatl on December 27th, 2017

Not “Ho, Ho, Ho,” but “Bah, Bah, Bah!”

We have been focusing our attention this Advent on the forgotten characters of Christmas.  Today we turn our attention to another forgotten group: the animals of Christmas.   

I        Some believe the animals are not Christmas characters, for several reasons:

  1. First, animals are not Christmas characters because they are not i____________.
  2. Second, some believe the animals are not Christmas characters because they are not h___________.
  3. Third, some say the animals are not Christmas characters because associating them with the Messiah is d_____________ to God.

II But if animals were a part of the Christmas story, what does their involvement teach us about Christmas?

  1. First, the animals teach us that Christmas is a c___________ event.
  2. If you think God doesn’t really care about animals, you have m___________ your Bible.
  3. God not only saved _______ and his family with the _____, he also saved all the animals of the earth.
  4. When God delivered the c_______ of I________ in the Exodus, he also delivered their animals.
  5. God’s command to remember the S_________, not only was to protect the people, but also to give animals a day of rest.
  6. When the Prophet Isaiah writes about what the coming of the Messiah will mean, he does not limit it only to what it will mean for _________.
  7. Revelation ____:___ says that Messiah’s ultimate salvation will impact all creation.
  8. The animals in the Christmas story are not _________. The birth of the Messiah is good news for them, because it is good news for _______ _________.
  9. Second, the animals teach us that Christmas is for those who are h___________ enough to receive the good news.
  10. There is nothing p_______ or e_________ about the way animals live.
  11. Why are there people who are offended at the humble circumstances into which Jesus was born? They understand that if Jesus lived in a humble s________, then he might call them into a humble l________ as well.
  12. But there is an upside: the animals who surrounded Jesus at his birth tell us that you cannot come to Jesus with your p_____.  But they also tell us that there is ___ ____ on earth who is not i_______ to come.
  13. Last, the animals teach us that the Savior born in Bethlehem
    deserves the worship of ______.

III The transformation the Messiah came to this earth to bring has not yet reached its fulfillment, but it is e_____ n____ at work.

 

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12-10-17 Kevin Goins The Forgotten Characters of Christmas, part 2

Posted in sermon, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Christianity, Dr. Kevin Goins, Advent, Christmas by facatl on December 12th, 2017

“The Forgotten Characters of Christmas” (Pt 2)  Matthew 2:16-18

Everyone connects the Christmas holiday with happy times.  We have parties, dinners, family get-togethers, gift-giving, special foods, all of which are intended to fill people with joy.  One thing we do not associate with Christmas is mourning.  We do our best to exclude mourning from the celebration of Christmas because mourning and Christmas are like oil and water; they do not mix.  But one of the forgotten characters of Christmas will not allow us to do this.  In fact, they bring mourning front and center right into the very heart of Christmas.  But, why is there mourning at Christmas?  

I There is mourning at Christmas because there is s__________ and h________ all year long.

  1. One who clearly demonstrated selfishness and hatred was _____.
  2. ___________ of ___________ also ruled with selfishness and hatred because he feared the g________ of I_______.
  3. We may brag about how civilized we have become, but the killing of children is even m______ c_________ today.

II Second, there is mourning at Christmas because, where there is great j_____, there is always the potential for great s___________.

  1. Rachel is a powerful reminder of how m_________ and m___________, which has the potential to bring great joy, can also bring great sorrow.
  2. Rachel is the mother who weeps, not just for her own sorrow, but for the sorrow of all her c___________, g___________, and g______-g___________ throughout the coming generations.

III Third, there is mourning at Christmas because the d________ d____________ comes before the b_________ l________.

IV Finally, why does Matthew r_______ the happiness of the Christmas story by telling us about this terrible m________?

  1. Because r______ l_____ is filled with many things which cause mourning.
  2. And the Rachels of the world will write us off as hopelessly n_______ and o_____ of t_______ if we pretend that angel choirs and adoring shepherds are all that Christmas is about.

 

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12-03-17 Kevin Goins - The Forgotten Characters of Christmas

“The Forgotten Characters of Christmas”  Matthew 2:1-20

Every year at this time we Christians focus our attention on the Christmas story and we spotlight the well-known characters of Christmas: the holy family, the shepherds, and the wisemen. But there are some supporting characters who often get overlooked. That is why for this Advent we are going to look at the people who are not pictured on Christmas cards and who are not sung about in Christmas carols. We are going to look at these forgotten characters because they have something to tell us about the birth of Jesus.

I The first overlooked character was not only mentioned in the Bible; he was the inspiration for one of the most well-known non-biblical
Christmas stories of all time: H____ ___ G________ S__________ C___________.
A. The Grinch’s words, “I must find some way to s_______ Christmas from coming,” is what connects this fictional character with a r_____ person from the Christmas story.
B. This real historical figure is ___________, the ________ of the ___.
C. The one who stood behind Herod, filling him with hate for the Messiah, was the one who inspires all hate: the _________.

II But why was Herod disturbed by the birth of Jesus? Two reasons:
A. First, the wisemen let Herod know that he was not the o_____ King of the Jews – he had c_____________.
B. Second, Herod was upset because the wisemen came to w_________ the newborn King of the Jews.

III What is significant about all this is that both the story of the real
person, Herod, and the story of the fictional character, the Grinch, teach the same truth: that there are p______ and f_______ who want to k______ Christmas from c_______.
A. Every year we Christians are amazed at how determined some are to make Christmas about a_________ and e___________ other than Christ.
B. What we are seeing is the G____________________ of American culture – the effort to keep the r_____ Christmas from coming.
C. But, no matter what we call it, what should we do about it?
1. First, r___________.
2. Second, l_________ and o________.
3. Third, d_____ w__________.

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11-26-17 Kevin Goins - The Parable of the Lost at Church, part 2

Posted in sermon, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Christianity, Dr. Kevin Goins, Bible by facatl on November 28th, 2017

“The Parable of the Lost at Church”   Luke 15:11-32

Three Sundays ago we looked at the first of three parables in Luke chapter fifteen. That first parable makes clear that our God is one who is delighted when the lost come home to him. But before we get the idea that the lost are always out there somewhere, far beyond the walls of the church, Jesus ends Luke chapter fifteen with a parable to remind us that there are lost people at church. If this parable is about the lost at church, what does it tell us about them?

I First, it tells us that the lost at church do not l______ l______ .
II The second thing this parable teaches us is that despite their i_______ appearance, the lost at church have a real p________: they are _____.
-Three evidences that the elder brother was lost:
   A. The first evidence that the older brother was lost is that he did not have a r______________ with the Father.
   B. The second evidence that the older brother was lost: he knew absolutely nothing about g________.
      1. There were t____ things that bugged the elder brother:
          a. His brother didn’t do anything that d_________ a fattened-calf celebration.
          b. He h____ d________ something which deserved a fattened-calf celebration.
      2. That, in a nutshell, is the elder brother’s theology: if you want the Father to give you a reward, you better w______ h_____ for it.
      3. But, not only does this poison our t_________, it also poisons our r__________ with God.
      4. And, not only does this performance mentality poison our relationship with God, it also poisons the way we t______ about o_______.
   C. The third evidence that the older brother was lost: he h______ his b________. -How do we know he hated his brother?
      1. He refers to his brother as “t______ s____ of y______.”
      2. He s_______ him.
      3. He makes no effort to r___________ with his brother.
III The third thing this parable teaches us is that the father is just as
concerned to find the lost at c________ as he is to find the lost in the w_________ (15:31-32).

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11-19-17 Thanksgiving Service

Our regular English service joined up with our Chinese Fellowship to "service" together. Everyone was asked to bring an item that represented what they were thankful for. Pastor Kevin began with a brief talk about Thanksgiving that was translated by Yue Xu and then people were given the opportunity to share how their item represented Thanksgiving. 

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11-12-17 Kevin Goins The Parable of the Lost at Church

Posted in sermon, Christianity, Dr. Kevin Goins by facatl on November 14th, 2017

“The Parable of the Lost at Church”  Luke 15:11-32

Two Sundays ago we looked at the first of three parables in Luke chapter fifteen. That first parable makes clear that our God is one who is delighted when the lost come home to him. But before we get the idea that the lost are always out there somewhere, far beyond the walls of the church, Jesus ends Luke chapter fifteen with a parable to remind us that there are lost people at church – not just visiting, but being intimately involved in the life and work of the church.

I Contrary to popular opinion, this is _____ the parable of the prodigal son.

A. First, if this was the parable of the prodigal son, then it would have ended with v__________ _____.

B. Second, this can’t be the parable of the prodigal son because the c_________ of Luke chapter fifteen will not allow that.

C. Third, this can’t be the parable of the prodigal son because if it is it does not a____ a__________ to the first two parables.

II If this parable is about the lost at church, w_______ does it tell us about them?

A. First, it tells us that the lost at church do not l_______ l_______.

1. There are two things about the older brother that would make him a p________ c__________ as a member for any church.

a. Number one: he was f____________ in the F________ house.

b. Number two: he was not only faithful at being ___ the father’s house, he worked h______ in the father’s house.

2. So, for both these reasons, the lost at church may not l______ lost.

B. The second thing this parable teaches us is that despite their i____________ appearance, the lost at church have a real p________: they are ________.

III The first evidence that the older brother was lost is that he did not have a r______________ with the Father.

A. Two reasons Jesus did call, and still calls, disciples:

1. To b___ w_____ him
2. To s_______ him.

B. Do we think of Christians first as people who d___ God’s w______?

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11-05-17 Abel Irvin: Finding Peace

Posted in sermon, First Alliance Church Atlanta, Christianity, Bible, peace by facatl on November 7th, 2017
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