October 3, 2021
October 3, 2021 • Pastor Phil Burggraff • Hebrews 13:18–25
Theme: Final Remarks for the Way Forward Passage: Hebrews 13:18–25 Three final calls to action as the book of Hebrews closes: 1. Pray for leaders to possess the conviction to powerfully display the Gospel (vv. 18–19). 2. Trust the work God is doing for you through Jesus (20–21). 3. Continue to persevere in the gospel (22). Main Idea: God’s has mapped out the way forward on life’s journey in the person and work of Jesus Christ. Application Questions: • What do vv. 18–19 teach us about the content of our prayers as well as how to pray? • How does the content of v. 20 serve as the basis for the request of equipping believers to do God’s will in v. 21? What does this indicate about God’s will in our lives? • What does it mean that God “works in us what is pleasing to him through Jesus Christ” in v. 21? How should this impact the way that you live? • What has Hebrews taught you about perseverance in the gospel?
September 26, 2021
September 26, 2021 • Pastor Phil Burggraff • Hebrews 13:7–17
September 26, 2021 - The Way Forward Following Your Leaders Passage: Hebrews 13:7–17 Title: The Way Forward Following Your Leaders Main Idea: God provides us with guides for our spiritual journey. Thus, we must: 1. Imitate our spiritual mentors (7–8). a. Remember their teaching. b. Observe their life choices. 2. Trust Christ’s Sacrifice (9–16). a. Don’t follow faddish teaching (9). b. Follow Christ’s path (10–14). c. Offer God sacrifices that praise him (15–16): i. Speech that confesses his name ii. Service that benefits others 3. Submit to your church leaders (17). a. They watch over your souls. b. They will give account. c. The more joyous their task, the more benefit to you Application Questions: • Name the spiritual mentors that have impacted your life. What was it about them that made such an impact on you? • How are you vulnerable to false teaching today? • What does Christ’s path suggest about the way our lives should look (vv. 12–14)? How does this differ from your current reality? • What does submitting to your current church leaders mean and not mean? How can we make their work joyous and not a burden?
September 19, 2021
September 19, 2021 • Pastor Phil Burggraff • Hebrews 13:1–6
Theme: The Way Forward in Service Passage: Hebrews 13:1–6 How thankful service to God (12:28–29) acts toward the people in our lives: 1. Spiritual Siblings: Lovingly care for your spiritual brothers and sisters (1) 2. Strangers: Hospitably care for those you don’t know (2) 3. Suffering: Think about those suffering for Christ and act accordingly (3) 4. Spouse: Vigilantly remain sexually pure (4) 5. Self: Conduct your life free from the care of money (5–6) Main Idea: Service focuses on the situation and needs of others by deemphasizing the desires of self. Application Questions: • Are you connected with this body of believers so that you can lovingly care for your brother and sisters here? How can you connect more deeply to obey the command in v. 1? • Why might believers struggle showing hospitality to those they don’t know, even in the context of the church? What can be done to address a lack of hospitality in your life? • What can you do to empathize with and help those who are suffering for the cause of Christ? • Where are you weakest in the battle to remain sexually pure? What steps do you need to take to remain sexually pure in our current context? • What practical ways can you implement in your life to free yourself from the love of money?
September 12, 2021
September 12, 2021 • Pastor Phil Burggraff • Hebrews 12:18–29
September 12, 2021 - The Culmination of The Way Forward Passage: Hebrews 12:18–29 Main Idea: Running life’s race culminates by responding to God’s revelation with grateful service. 1. The Culmination of our Race (18–24) a. Not Sinai, which produced fear b. But Heavenly Zion, the joyous presence of God 2. Our Response: Do not refuse God’s spoken Word (25–27) a. Outcome: We won’t escape God’s coming judgment b. Purpose for judgment: the revelation of God’s unshakeable kingdom 3. The Actions of Unshakeable-Kingdom Dwellers (28–29) a. Express Gratitude b. Serve God Application Questions: • How is fear portrayed both negatively and positively throughout this passage? • Why should we both resist running life’s race in fear and run it with a healthy fear? How is this done? • What does it mean “See to it that you do not refuse him who speaks?” What must we not refuse? How might we refuse? • In applying the commands of v. 28, how do you express gratitude? How do you acceptably serve God? Would God judge your service to Him as acceptable?
September 5, 2021
September 5, 2021 • Pastor Phil Burggraff • Hebrews 12:4–17
Theme: The way forward requires discipline Hebrews 12:4–17 Main Idea: Running life’s race with endurance requires God’s discipline. 1. The Reality leading to this truth a. We haven’t suffered as much as Christ or others (4). b. We easily forget “God disciplines those he loves” (5–6). 2. The Rationale for this truth a. Relationship: Fathers discipline their children (7–8). b. Respect: Children submit to their Father’s discipline (9). c. Benefit: Fathers discipline ultimately for their children’s good (10). d. Experience: For those trained by it, the momentary pain of discipline produces a peaceful harvest of righteousness (11). 3. Our Response to this truth a. Strengthen up that which is weak (12). b. Stick to the straight path (13). c. Pursue peace and holiness rather than turning aside for the pleasures of the present (14). Application Questions: • In your mind, what does the word discipline connote? Which understanding of discipline is prominent in this text? Does discipline in this text include punishment at all? • How does suffering and pain function within God’s discipline process for his children? How have you experienced this in your own life? What did you learn through that process? • Peace, holiness, and righteousness seem to be the goal or outcome of enduring through discipline (vv. 11 and 14). Can these be obtained or accomplished by us? How is it that holiness is required to see the Lord? How do we receive this holiness (as well as peace and righteousness)? • What warning(s) are taught by the example of Esau? How does this motivate you to run life’s race with endurance?
August 29, 2021
August 29, 2021 • Pastor Josh Kee • Hebrews 12:1–3
Hebrews 12:1-3 Sermon Information Title: "The Way of Glory is the Way of Endurance" Outline: 1. Run with discipline (12:1a) // The Way of Self-denial and Holiness • “weight” – any incumbrance that would hinder or distract • “sin” – anything that opposes God’s character or is not aligned to Christ 2. Run with endurance (12:1b) // The Way of Perseverance • The race has been set for us • We who are in Christ are runners and the only goal is that we finish • This race is long and requires both planning and discipline • There is much that threatens our ability to finish • We have been given everything needed to finish in the person and work of Christ • There is a glorious reward for those who finish 3. Run with Christ (12:2) // The Way of Suffering and Triumph a. Faith is begun and completed by Jesus (2a) (Hebrews 2:10-11, 14-18; 5:7-10) b. Faith embraces the way of joy (2b) c. Faith embraces the way of disgrace (2c) d. Faith embraces the promise of glory (2d) 4. Run with courage (12:3); Matthew 11:28-30 // The Way of Remembrance MAIN IDEA: Everyone who has been reconciled to God through Christ has been called to run a God-ordained race that embraces Christ’s sufferings, overcomes sin, and ultimately enjoys the eternal reward of resurrected life with Christ. We do not run by our own strength or endure by our own fortitude, but by orienting our lives to Jesus and by receiving his sustaining grace to enable us to endure. Discussion Questions: 1. What “weights” currently hinder you from running well after Christ? 2. What “sin” ensnares you and keeps you from running well? What are afraid of losing if we were to throw off the weights and sin? What are we convinced they can give us that God will withhold? 3. Have you embraced the race God has set before you, or are you trying to define the race and the rules as you desire? Are you resentful of the particular race God has you running? 4. How does our current culture tempt us to soften the expectation (and diminish the resulting joy) of self-denial and holiness? 5. How do the promises of glory (Christ is exalted at God’s right hand) enable us to endure the trials, suffering, and disgrace that faithfulness to Christ might bring? 6. How often do you consider the glories of Christ’s kingdom? The implications of the work of Christ? The promises you stand to enjoy as a co-heir with Christ? Is your heart and mind fixated on earthly things or things belonging to Christ (Colossians 3:1-3)? 7. Read Matthew 11:28-30, Hebrews 2:10-18, and 5:7-10. How do these passages encourage you to keep running when you get “weary and fainthearted”? Are you expected to endure on your own? What role does the church play in your endurance?
August 15, 2021
August 15, 2021 • Pastor Josh Kee • Hebrews 11:23–40
Hebrews 11:23-40 Title: "The Way of Faith in the Midst of Suffering" Outline: 1. The Faith of Moses (11:23-29) a. Faith acts despite hard consequences (23) b. Faith chooses the promise of God over the pleasures of the world (24-27; Psalm 84:10-12; Philippians 3:8-10) c. Faith fears God more than man (28; Psalm 118:6; Heb. 13:6) d. Faith leads the way in obedience (29) 2. The Faith of Israel (11:30-31) a. Faith chooses the wisdom of God over the wisdom of man (1 Cor. 1:18-31) b. Faith passes through every hindrance to the purposes of God (Isa. 43:2) 3. The Faith of Rahab (11:32) a. Faith opposes that which opposes God (Matt. 12:30) b. Faith aligns with God 4. Other examples of Faith (11:33-38) a. Faith overcomes (33-35a) b. Faith endures suffering for a better reward (35b-38; 2 Cor. 4:16-18; 1 Peter 1:6-9) 5. The reward of faith (11:39-40) a. Jesus completes and fulfills every promise of God b. In Christ we possess the true reward of faith The point is to give readers ample examples of those who trusted God before them so that they will not give up their hope but persevere in faith amid their suffering. Those who endure suffering by faith and align themselves with God will receive the great reward of their faith – imperishable life in Christ and indestructible joy in fellowship with God. Discussion Q’s: 1. What do these verses teach us about the biblical expectations of what being faithful to Christ might mean? Are your expectations of the Christian life aligned with God’s word? 2. Who has served as examples of enduring faith in your life? How do these people encourage you to keep trusting in Christ? 3. What pleasures of the world tend to allure you? Ask the Holy Spirit to help you apprehend the treasure that Christ is. 4. Is there anything that is currently tempting you to turn from Christ? (societally, politically, internally?) How does Christ’s high priestly work encourage you to bring these things honestly to him? 5. Where are you tempted to align with the world’s system of values rather than with God? Confess these areas in faith that Jesus is sympathetic and stands to give you grace to endure faithfully. 6. How does suffering prove the substance of our hope as Christians? What suffering are you enduring currently or have endured at some point? How did/do the promises of God give you hope and endurance? 7. How often do you think of the future “city” that God is preparing for those who are in Christ? Spend some time this week considering what this city will be like, when sin is judged forever and Christ reigns in perfect righteousness.
August 8, 2021
August 8, 2021 • Pastor Phil Burggraff • Hebrews 11:8–22
Theme: The way forward by faith (part 2) Passage: Hebrews 11:8–22 2. Faith in Action (continued): e. Abraham’s Family (8–22) i. Faith follows God even when we don’t know where He is leading (8). ii. Faith resides in a world that is not our home (9–10). iii. Faith receives the impossible because we focus on the Faithful Promiser (11–12). iv. Faith continues to death even if God’s promises aren’t fully realized in our lifetime (13–16). v. Faith gives what God requests even when this would seem to jeopardize our understanding of God’s promises (17–19). vi. Faith looks to the future to see the realization of God’s promises (20–22). Call of Faith: Trust God no matter how your life is playing out this side of glory. Application questions: • Which statement of faith lived out in Abraham’s family resonates with your present situation? • Do you notice any discrepancies in the way that the author of Hebrews portrays the faith of Abraham’s family from your own recollection of these stories from Genesis? What does this teach us about the life of faith? • Do you think of the promises of God as something fulfilled in your life presently or something that awaits you in the future? Explain. How might this influence your own walk with God? • Why do you think that God doesn’t allow us to see the fulfillment of his promises within our lifetimes? What may mean for your life right now?
August 1, 2021
August 1, 2021 • Pastor Phil Burggraff • Hebrews 11:1–7
Theme: The way forward by faith (part 1) Passage: Hebrews 11:1–7 1. Faith Described: a. Assurance that the things we hope for will happen (1a) b. Conviction that the unseen things are real (1b) 2. Faith in Action: a. Creation (3): Faith understands that the universe (the seen) came into being by God’s word (the unseen). b. Abel’s Sacrifice (4): Faith offers obediently to God that which He commends. c. Enoch’s Walk (5–6): Faith lives to please to God. d. Noah’s Ark (7): Faith responds reverently to God’s word and renounces the things of this world. Main Idea: Persevering faith follows God no matter how the world may respond. Application Questions: 1. What does Hebrews 11:1 contribute to a biblical understanding of faith? What elements from the NT might you add to fill out the definition of faith? 2. Describe the objective and subjective aspects of faith? How do these relate to one another? Which takes priority? 3. Why is the belief that God rewards those who earnestly seek Him a necessary component of faith (v. 6)? Is this a component of your faith? Explain. 4. Which of the truths concerning faith, gleaned from the OT examples in vv. 3, 4, 5, and 7, do you see in your own life? Which do you sense are weak in your faith? How can these be strengthened going forward?
July 25, 2021
July 25, 2021 • Pastor Phil Burggraff
Theme: The way forward with endurance Passage: Hebrews 10:26–39 Our two-fold motivation to endure obeying the commands of vv. 22–25: 1. Be Warned: God will judge anyone who rejects His Son (26–31): a. No other sacrifice exists that can cleanse our sins. b. The one rejecting insults God and His plan. c. It’s in God’s nature to judge sin and sinners. 2. Be Encouraged: You are sticking it out for something greater (32–39) How can I be encouraged? a. Remember what God has already accomplished in your life, especially in difficult times (32–34). b. Hold on to the confidence Christ brings because you will receive the promised life (35–39). Main Idea: As believers, we don’t turn from Christ and face destruction, but endure by faith to reach our promised salvation. Application Questions: • Endurance sounds like effort and work. How is this consistent with the call throughout Hebrews and all the NT for faith alone in Jesus Christ as our means of salvation? • What do you make of the depiction of God as a God of judgment and vengeance throughout this passage? Considering our modern tendency to focus on His love, how can this be incorporated into our depiction of God when we tell others of him or seek to explain God in our teaching? • How are you encouraged to endure by what God has already accomplished in your life? Consider and discuss difficult times through which God has brought you. • From this week and last week’s sermon (10:19–25), we can we do to hold on to the confidence Christ brings? Why is Christian community so vital to accomplish this?
July 18th, 2021
July 18, 2021 • Pastor Phil Burggraff
Title: The Way Forward in Community Passage: Hebrews 10:19–25 Main Idea: Jesus’ work opens the way forward for us to enter the presence of God: Let’s answer two “how” questions from this text: 1. How do we know that? a. The shed blood of Jesus provides confidence to enter. b. Jesus serves as our high priest over God’s house. 2. How do we move forward into God’s presence? a. We draw near with a heart that truly possesses the full assurance that faith brings (22): i. We have been cleaned of guilt ii. We are washed pure b. We hold unswervingly to the hope we profess (23). c. We “consider” how to spiritually help one another love and do good (24). i. Manner: 1. Stay connected (25a) 2.Encourage (25b) ii. Reason: The Day is approaching (25c) Application Questions: • What comes to your mind when you ponder the presence of God? What is this passage suggesting that we uniquely gain if God is omnipresent? • If Jesus has accomplished all of this for us, why do we struggle at times to have the confidence and boldness that this passage suggests we possess? • According to this passage, from where does our assurance come (see especially v. 22)? • What does unswervingly mean in the clause hold unswervingly to the hope we profess? • Do you consider how to spiritually help others within the church body love and do what is right, or is your focus almost exclusively on your own walk with the Lord? What might that look like in your life?
July 11th 2021
July 11, 2021 • Pastor Phil Burggraff
Theme: The Way Forward through Perfection Passage: Hebrews 10:1–18 How is perfection attained? 1. Perfection cannot come through the Law (1–4). 2. Perfection comes through Jesus accomplishing God’s will (5–18). a. God’s will is to make us holy through Jesus’ offering (5–10). b. Jesus has perfected those of us He has made holy (11–14). c. The Holy Spirit internalizes God’s will for us so that we know we are forgiven (15–18). Main Idea: Jesus offered Himself to perfect us completely in God’s eyes. Application Questions: • How do you understand perfection? Do you have perfectionist tendencies? How might your understanding of perfection affect your relationship with God? • What transformation occurs with the Law in this section (see vv. 1 and 16–17)? Does this mean that there no longer is law for believers? Explain. • What do we learn about God’s will from this passage (especially vv. 5–10)? How does this impact your view of God’s will for your life? • According to this passage, are you perfect? made holy? forgiven? Explain. What applications should these realities lead you to make this week in your own life?
July 4th, 2021
July 4, 2021 • Pastor Phil Burggraff
Theme: The way forward through Christ’s sacrifice Passage: Hebrews 9:1–28 Notice two aspects of Christ’s sacrificial work for us: 1. Christ ministers to give us an eternal redemption (1–14). His ministry in contrast to the ministry under the old covenant: a. He has entered the actual Holy of Holies. b. He has offered His own blood to cleanse our consciences. c. He has enabled us to serve the living God. 2. Christ mediates a new covenant to give us an eternal inheritance (15–28). a. His death inaugurated a new covenant (16–18). b. His blood provides true forgiveness for our sins (19–22). c. His revelation brings us salvation (23–28). Main Idea: Our way forward has been paved in the blood of Jesus Christ. Application Questions: • Why do you think that there is such a heavy emphasis on blood and sacrifice both in the old covenant as well as the new? Could God forgive sins without blood and sacrifice? Why or why not? • How does the blood of Christ purify our conscience (v. 14)? As a believer do you think of yourself as possessing a pure conscience, and why is this important? What is the result of having a pure conscience? • What is the eternal inheritance that Christ has promised (v. 15)? • What does this passage teach you about the forgiveness of your sins? How should this affect the way that we act and think about sin? • In what ways does this passage motivate you to serve God?
June 27th, 2021
June 27, 2021 • Pastor Phil Burggraff
Theme: The way forward through the new covenant Passage: Hebrews 8:1–13 How do we benefit from Jesus as our high priest? 1. Jesus serves on our behalf in the presence of God (1–6). a. He is seated at the right hand of God (1). b. He serves in the true tabernacle of God (2–5). 2. Jesus mediates a new covenant relationship between us and God (6–13). a. The problem with the old covenant: i. It got replaced (7) ii. (because) The people of God couldn’t remain faithful to it (8–9). b. The better promises of the new covenant for us: i. God enables us to accomplish his law by writing it in our hearts (10). ii. We personally and intimately know the Lord (11). iii. God forgives our sins completely (12). Main Idea: Since Jesus serves as our high priest, we must look to him and him alone to usher us into the presence of God. Application Questions: • What implications and applications can we draw from the fact that the true tabernacle is not physical on earth but spiritual in the heavenly realm? How should this affect the way we look at the things of this world? • Since the old covenant was faulty and required God to establish a new covenant relationship with his people, how should we look at the Old Testament, especially its laws and regulations? Are we required to keep its commandments today? • What do the better promises, given in the new covenant as described in vv. 10–12, indicate about your relationship with God? How might these be a comfort, reassurance, and motivation in your life? • What hinders you from looking exclusively to Jesus to provide you access to the presence of God? What do you need to do today to begin to address these hindrances?
June 20th, 2021
June 20, 2021 • Pastor Josh Kee
Hebrews 7:1-28 Sermon Information // Jesus & Melchizedek Title: "Jesus is the Better Way Forward" Outline: 1. Melchizedek is greater than the Levitical Priest (7:1-10) a. "King of righteousness" (Hebrews 1:9; Psalm 72:7) b. "King of Peace" (Isa. 9:6, 53:5; John 14:27; Ephesians 2:14) c. Resembles Jesus (3) d. Melchizedek's greatness (4-10) 2. The Levitical Priesthood had changed (7:11-19) a. Jesus is the better priest (11-12) b. Jesus is the King-Priest (13-14) c. Jesus is an enduring priest because he possesses an indestructible life (15-17; Psalm 110:4) d. Jesus brings us into God's presence, providing a better hope (18-19; see 6:18-19) e. Jesus guarantees a better covenant (20-22) f. Jesus is able to save completely (23-25) 3. Jesus is qualified to serve as priest forever (26-28) The point is to give the readers assurance that their sins are forgiven because Jesus is the better priest, mediating a better covenant, qualified by his own moral perfection and acceptable sacrifice to atone for sins, and guaranteed by the unbreakable promise of God. Anyone who will come to God through faith in Christ has reason to be confident that they are accepted in the presence of God. Discussion Q’s: 1. How are righteousness and peace related? (Why is it impossible to have peace without righteousness?) 2. What does it mean to experience Christ’s peace in your life? Are you experiencing it? 3. What are you trusting in as you approach God? Are you prone to trust in an incomplete/ impotent system (morality, self-effort, adherence to the law or rules, etc.)? 4. Why is the law unable to save and transform? How does transformation take place? 5. What does it mean that Jesus is able to “save to the uttermost”? How does this encourage you, even as you battle sin in your life? 6. How does Jesus’ high priestly work give us confidence in our relationship with God? Are you enjoying that confidence? What keeps you from it?