GotMercy Weekly Sermons from Mike Nelson of Mercy Vineyard Church in Raleigh, North Carolina

October 15, 2017  

The book of Job chapter 1.  

Why me? That is the question many ask when in the throes of suffering. And while there are biblical answers for why we suffer ... humanity's rebellion against God, spiritual evil, indifferent creational upheaval, others' sin against us, or foolish choices ... a healthier and more beneficial focus is to consider how we should RESPOND to God in pain. 2 choices lie before us in those times ... we can move toward God in trust even if we don't understand, or we can harden our hearts and walk away.

Job is a great model for us!  In his unbearable pain, Job: 1. Grieved and mourned honestly;  2. He bowed down and submitted his broken life to God; and 3. He refused to accuse or blame God for wrongdoing.

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October 8, 2017  

Job 1:6-12

God is good. God is omnipotent. But there is real evil in His world. CS Lewis states that there are 2 opposite yet equal errors people make when it comes to the reality of evil: 1. Either people become obsessed with evil blaming everything on Satan and looking for a demon behind every bush or 2. People are naive and dismiss Satan and the realm of evil.

Jesus did neither. In fact Jesus claimed that His authority over evil was a sign that He had brought a new in-breaking of the Kingdom of God.

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October 1, 2017  

Job Chapter 1:1-5

For as long as we know people of faith and people with no faith have been wrestling with the issue of THEODICY.  Theodicy is captured by the following 3 line heading:  God is good and all loving, God is Omnipotent and able to do all things, the history of the world is filled with evil, pain and suffering.  Why?

This is the first message in a series which looks at the issue of pain and suffering from a Biblical perspective.  We begin with Job, a man who is described as upright and blameless, a man who fears God and shuns evil.   Yet he suffers horrendously.

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September 24, 2017  

1st Timothy 6.

We're finishing up on Paul's letter to Timothy on leadership.  Today Paul identifies several marks of a bad leader ... 1. A bad leader does not hold to solid doctrine based on the teaching of Jesus.  2. A bad leader constantly stirs up conflict and division. And 3. A bad leader views the gospel, church, and ministry as a way to make a buck. The LOVE of $$$ is a root of all kinds of evil.

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September 17, 2017  

1st Timothy 6:1-2: What do we do with statements like these uttered by the Apostle Paul at a time when there were 60 million slaves in the Roman empire?  And many were slaves and masters side by side in the church!

What do we do?  We read Paul's words in context and apply biblical tools of interpretation knowing that 1. God has created ALL people equally in His image ... knowing that 2. Paul urged slaves to secure their freedom if possible ... 1st Corinthians 7:21.  And knowing 3.  the Un-equivocal condemnation of slave traders ... 1st Timothy 1:10 / Deuteronomy 24:7.

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September 10, 2017  

In 1st Timothy 5:17-24, the Apostle Paul states that pastors should be honored with respect and remuneration. They should also be protected against slander and accusation. And if need be, they should be disciplined for sinful behavior.

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August 27, 2017  

1 Timothy 4: The Apostle Paul states that some followers of Jesus will fall away in the "last days" ... the days sandwiched in between Jesus 1st and 2nd coming. This "apostasy" occurs because of a slow erosion of truth, a step by step abandonment of God's truth found in scripture. The erosion of truth goes hand in hand with a hardening of a person's conscience -- one of the primary way God speaks to all people.

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August 20, 2017  

In 1st Timothy 3, Paul tells us that it is a noble desire for a man or woman to want to be an overseer -- pastor, elder, leader.

However, that person must have both an inner call from God's Spirit and an outward affirmation of that call from others in Christ's family.

And they must have good, deepening character. Character is a higher priority than gifting and talent, for a person's character takes a long time to develop.

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August 13, 2017  

1st Timothy 2:9-15 part 2
"I do not allow a woman to teach or have authority over a man. She must remain silent."

What is Paul actually saying in this lone, single new testament verse which apparently prohibits women from positions of leadership?  Is he giving a creational mandate which applies to all churches in all places and at all times? Or is Paul addressing a contingent, local situation in Ephesus aimed at guarding the integrity of Jesus' gospel against false teachers and their distortion?

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August 6, 2017  

1st Timothy 2 is one of, if not THE, most controversial passage in the New Testament.  Much ink has been spilled writing about whether or not the Apostle Paul is teaching a "creational mandate" that women should never teach or have authority in the church . . . OR . . . if Paul's words were a "situational" prohibition due to heresy and false teaching being spread by women coming to Christ out of a massive cult of goddess worship (the cult of Artemis).

Going upstream against the prevailing Rabbinical and religious opinion of his day (the 1st Century Rabbi, Rabbi Eliezer, wrote in the Jewish Talmud:  " Let the words of the Torah (Jewish law) rather be destroyed by fire than imparted to woman") the former Pharisee Apostle Paul states that "A Woman MUST learn ...".  This is a very radical statement for Paul's day!  No doubt Paul observed Jesus' love and respect for women and Jesus' willingness to teach them Torah (Mary sitting as his feet learning).

This message is the first of a 2 part message on women in leadership based on 1st Timothy 2

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