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Sermon B-Sides

Sermon B-Sides - E70 - Spiritual War and the Bonfire of the Magic Books - Acts 19:11–41

April 29, 2022 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris

Ephesus was full of spiritual darkness, and it was a city where the cures were as bad as the ailments. We see this in the syncretistic exorcists and magic books full of spells to cast out demons or heal from sickness. What is magic exactly? Do Christians need to be on guard against spiritual darkness today? In this episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten look at Acts 19 and consider how the gospel delivers people from spiritual darkness.

Sermon B-Sides - E69 - A Pentecost in Ephesus and a School Hall Church Plant - Acts 18:18–19:10

April 15, 2022 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris • Acts 18:18—19:10

In this episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten look at the gospel ministry in Ephesus. Ephesus was a strategic location for the gospel. The gospel began to spread in Ephesus through the ministry of Apollos. Then, Paul spent over two years teaching there, resulting in all Asia Minor hearing the gospel.

Sermon B-Sides - E68 - God's Grace for Pastors During Hard Times - Acts 18:1–17

March 4, 2022 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris • Acts 18:1–17

In the Bible, God uses normal people like Paul and Elijah as instruments in his mission. We may think that Paul and Elijah were invincible, but they struggled with despair and the pressures of their task. But in these moments, we see God graciously comfort and strengthen them. In this episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten look at the story of Paul in Corinth and Jesus' promise that Paul would not be harmed there.

Sermon B-Sides - E67 - Paul Confronts the Philosophers - Acts 17:16–34

February 25, 2022 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris • Acts 17:16–34

What happens when the Gospel confronts the cultured pagans of Athens? In this episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten look at Paul's address to the Areopagus. In this passage, Paul shares the Gospel with people who are not familiar with the Old Testament. We can learn from Paul's example here; while he sought to make the Gospel understandable, he did not soften the claims of the Gospel that the Athenians found offensive.

Sermon B-Sides - E66 - Turning the World Upside Down - Acts 17:1–15

February 11, 2022 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris • Acts 17:1–15

As the Gospel spreads throughout the Greek world, the Church experiences more and more conflict. Religious leaders stir up riots. Paul and his team are accused of turning the world upside down. In this episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten discuss Paul's missionary trips to Thessalonica and Berea, and why it's significant that Luke mentions converted women in Acts.

Sermon B-Sides - E65 - Sanctity of Life, Abortion, and the Fear of God - Genesis 1:26–27 & Psalm 106

February 4, 2022 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris • Genesis 1:26–27, Psalm 106:36–45

In this episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten discuss how the sanctity of human life is rooted in the image of God. They also discuss how the fear of God should shape our posture towards this issue—especially with regard to abolishing legal abortion.

Sermon B-Sides - E64 - Christ Impacts Economics, Civics, and the Family

January 28, 2022 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris • Acts 16:16–40

It is popular among Christians today to reduce the Gospel to personal "spiritual" application only. We believe that Christ has no plan to make an impact on the wider culture. As a result, we forget that Christ is Lord of all. In this episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten look at Acts 16:16–40 and discuss how, even in the early Church, we see Christ's impact in all aspects of life—including economics, civics, and the family.

Sermon B-Sides - E63 - Loving Your Neighbor, and Not Loving the World

January 21, 2022 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris

Today, the Church faces constant pressure to redefine loving our neighbors to fit with the world's definition. This tendency can undermine the Gospel. In this episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten discuss how redefining "sin" and "love" robs our neighbors of the truth of the Gospel: that Christ came to save us from our sin. When we do this, we compromise both the Gospel and the distinction between the Church and the world.

Sermon B-Sides - E62 - We Will Judge Angels?

December 31, 2021 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris

What does the Bible teach about angels? Why do the stories of Christ's birth have so many scenes with angels? In this episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten consider how the Bible talks about angels, their relation to the Old and New Covenants, and how they often inspired fear in those who encountered them.

Sermon B-Sides - E61 - Time, History, Waiting, and Advent

December 24, 2021 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris

Merry Christmas! At the fullness of time, Christ was born in Bethlehem. The coming of Jesus was the long-awaited fulfillment of the promise given at the beginning of the story in Eden. In this episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten consider how the practices and traditions of Advent teach us to consider Jesus' long-awaited arrival so we can learn to wait in hope for his coming kingdom.

Sermon B-Sides - E60 - What Child is This, Anyways?

December 17, 2021 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris

Merry Christmas! What exactly happened on that first Christmas? Was that baby that in the manger also God? Is Jesus also a human? Did the Old Testament anticipate this at all? In this Advent Episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten discuss the deity of Jesus, the incarnation, and how the Bible anticipates the astounding miracle of the Word made flesh.

Sermon B-Sides - E59 - Worshipped as Zeus and Hermes... then Stoned - Acts 14

December 10, 2021 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris • Acts 14

To the Jew first, and then to the Gentile—we see that pattern throughout the book of Acts. The mission starts in the synagogues until Peter or Paul get kicked out. Then they preach the Gospel to the Gentiles. In this episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten look at Acts 14 notice wild swings that Paul would experience in his missions. In this chapter, Paul and Barnabas bring the Gospel to the Gentiles in Lystra. At first, the crowds worship Paul and Barnabas as Zeus and Hermes, but then they stone Paul and drag him outside of the city. These experiences become the way God advances his kingdom and spreads his Gospel.

Sermon B-Sides - E58 - The Sermons of Acts: OT Heavy and Punchy - Acts 13:13–52

December 3, 2021 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris • Acts 13:13–52

Have you ever noticed how different the sermons preached in the book of Acts are from the sermons you might hear today? Rather than being mere motivational boosts, the sermons in Acts focus on how Jesus is the fulfillment of the Old Testament, and they do so in a punchy, to-the-point way. In this episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten consider these sermons and the way they put trust in the Word and promises of God.

Sermon B-Sides - E57 - Herod, Governor Sergius & Two Kingdom Theology - Acts 12–13

November 19, 2021 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris • Acts 12, Acts 13

King Herod killed James and continued to persecute Christians because it was politically advantageous. God later strikes him down. Shortly after this, we see the conversion of Sergius Paulus, the Roman governor of Cyprus. Why does Acts emphasize kings and rulers? How is Sergius supposed to rule now that he is a Christian? In this Episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten consider these questions, and share some general thoughts on various versions of Two Kingdom Theology.

Sermon B-Sides - E56 - Cornelius and the Elementary Principles - Acts 10–11

November 12, 2021 • Pastor Jon Needham, Pastor Rusten Harris • Acts 10, Acts 11

Jew and Gentile. Circumcision, food laws, and the ceremonial law. The Holy Spirit and the conversion of the Gentile centurion Cornelius and his household. Ethnic identity and covenant identity. "Ordinances" and the "elementary principles of the world." Why does the Old Testament have laws that Christians don't observe anymore, while it has other laws that they do? In this episode of Sermon B-Sides, Pastor Jon and Pastor Rusten consider questions that seem like foreign concepts to us, but were very prevalent and monumental in the New Testament. Considering these questions will help you understand major themes of the New Covenant and the Gospel.

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