Move the Stone, Come Out & Be Unwrapped

I’ve been studying the raising of Lazarus recently. I love how a closer examination of a very familiar passage can reveal new spiritual truths. Here are a few little insights I’ve gleaned. First, this story is full of deep emotions and coated with tears, grief, loss and longing. Just think of the last funeral visitation you…

Nic @ Night 6: A Summary

Reposted from 2012. We have spent only a few weeks in our sermon series on Nicodemus and Jesus in John 3. We could spend months exploring all of the rich treasures and profound theological realities found therein. But we must move on . . . move out onto the open road with Jesus in John…

Nic @ Night 5: Nicodemus at the Car Shop

Reposted from 2012. I brought in the car for a $25 oil change this week, and came home with a laundry list of significant repairs estimating over $3,550. The car has 200,000 miles on it — so we knew this day was coming. Nicodemus probably came to Jesus hoping for a simple religious tune-up —…

Nic @ Night 4: Talking about “New Birth”

This Sunday I have the honor of preaching a message on one of the most significant truths and experiences in all the universe: God’s supernatural work of New Birth in the human heart. “No one can see the kingdom of God unless they are born again/from above” (John 3:3). How do you talk about something…

Nic @ Night 3: Religion vs. Gospel

Nicodemus was very religious. And this was a major obstacle preventing him from receiving the teaching and understanding the message of Jesus. Here’s a wonderful contrast between RELIGION and THE GOSPEL by Tim Keller: RELIGION: I obey, therefore I’m accepted. THE GOSPEL: I’m accepted, therefore I obey. RELIGION: Motivation is based on fear and insecurity. THE GOSPEL: Motivation is…

Nic @ Night 2: Religion Isn’t Enough

Reposted from 2012. To kick off the new year, we’re exploring one of my favorite “Christ Encounters” in the Gospels — Jesus’ conversation with Nicodemus. Here’s how the clandestine story begins: There was a man named Nicodemus, a Jewish religious leader who was a Pharisee.  After dark one evening, he came to speak with Jesus. “Rabbi,”…

Nic @ Night 1: Restless New Years Eve

A repost from 2012. Let’s begin this New Year by getting back to one of the most basic and foundational spiritual truths: New Birth!  Let’s spend sometime in the shoes of Nicodemus, a devout, religious man who was still lacking something. Let’s imagine, just for fun, that Nicodemus went to Jesus late on New Year’s…

Backroads, Buckets & Buffets 3

27 Just then his disciples returned and were surprised to find him talking with a woman. But no one asked, “What do you want?” or “Why are you talking with her?” 28 Then, leaving her water jar, the woman went back to the town and said to the people, 29“Come, see a man who told me everything I ever…