Message Notes: Living to Give #2 – Give and It Shall Be Given

#02: GIVE AND IT SHALL BE GIVEN

I       INTRODUCTION

A)  I want to talk to you about our LEGACY Breakout Offering on Sunday, June 24th

B)  Legacy = something tangible that is passed from one generation to another

C)  This year Toronto City Church is celebrating 30 years. Church Without Limits would have been celebrating its 18th Anniversary. What we are experiencing now is because there were many people who have prayed, served, been faithful, scarfed and sowed… some who are here and some who are not. They have left a legacy to us.

D)  We are coming into a new season of faith, contending, praying, sowing and sacrificing for what God wants to do in the next 30 years and we are going to pay the price now to leave a legacy for the next generation. We are going to be FUTURE focused.

E)  For the next season, our LEGACY Offering is going to focus on two key thrusts: we are going to attack our mortgage and we are going to strategically invest in key advancements.

F)   Our mortgage is currently $2.6 million. Last year we were able to take an extra $60,000 off of it and our goal is that every year we will continue to go above and beyond our regular payments to pay it down. We are believing the Lord to be debt-free. And we still have Phase 3 to build.

G)  Next week I’m going to talk about some of the other elements of this years offering.

H)  I want to call on every member of our church family to seek God and give into this special offering (above your regular tithes and offerings)

I)     We are also going to be starting the LEGACY Company – a group of people who are committed to give above and beyond in the vision/mission of TCC in a strategic way and help us push forward into the future.

II     THE POWER OF GIVING

A)  Today I want to talk to you about the power of giving

B)  As a young man who was growing in God, this was one of the first revelations the Lord showed me and that I walked in.

Luke 6:38 (NIV) – Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you.”
 
Matt 6:33 (AMP) – But seek (aim at and strive after) first of all His kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right), and then all these things taken together will be given you besides
 
Mark 4:11 (NIV) – He told them, “The secret of the kingdom of God has been given to you. But to those on the outside everything is said in parables

C)  Jesus said “Give and it will be given unto you, pressed down, shaken together and running over…”

D)  When I read this I have a choice: I can choose to believe it or I can choose to not believe it (whatever form that takes)

E)  It’s actually really easy to tell whether you believe it or not… you just look at your actions.

III   PERSONAL STORY: MY JOURNEY OF GIVING

A)  I shared some of my personal journey in giving

B)  Some keys from my story:

1)   I heard the Word of God about giving and chose to believe it

2)   I listened to Holy Spirit

3)   I had to make a choice to step out on the Word of God = RISK

4)   I positioned myself to receive

C)  God is calling us to step out of the boat and to walk on the water (Matt 14:22-36)

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50 Things Holy Spirit Does in Our Lives (Frank Viola)

The following article comes from Frank Viola’s new book, Jesus Now: Unveiling the Present-Day Ministry of Christ.

1.      The Spirit convicts the world of sin, righteousness, and judgment (John 16:8).

2.      The Spirit guides us into all truth (John 16:13).

3.      The Spirit regenerates us (John 3:5-8; Titus 3:5).

4.      The Spirit glorifies and testifies of Christ (John 15:26; 16:14).

5.      The Spirit reveals Christ to us and in us (John 16:14-15).

6.      The Spirit leads us (Rom. 8:14; Gal. 5:18; Matt. 4:1; Luke 4:1).

7.      The Spirit sanctifies us (2 Thess. 2:13; 1 Pet. 1:2; Rom. 5:16).

8.      The Spirit empowers us (Luke 4:14; 24:49; Rom. 15:19; Acts 1:8).

9.      The Spirit fills us (Eph. 5:18; Acts 2:4; 4:8, 31; 9:17).

10.    The Spirit teaches us to pray (Rom. 8:26-27; Jude 1:20).

11.    The Spirit bears witness in us that we are children of God (Rom. 8:16).

12.    The Spirit produces in us the fruit or evidence of His work and presence (Gal. 5:22-23).

13.    The Spirit distributes spiritual gifts and manifestations (the outshining) of His presence to and through the body (1 Cor. 12:4, 8-10; Heb. 2:4).

14.    The Spirit anoints us for ministry (Luke 4:18; Acts 10:38).

15.    The Spirit washes and renews us (Titus 3:5).

16.    The Spirit brings unity and oneness to the body (Eph. 4:3; 2:14-18). Here the Spirit plays the same role that He plays in the Godhead. The Spirit is the life that unites Father and Son. The Spirit plays the same role in the church. When the Spirit is operating in a group of people, He unites them in love. Therefore, a sure evidence of the Holy Spirit working in a group is love and unity, not signs and wonders (those are seasonal and can be counterfeited).

17.    The Spirit is our guarantee and deposit of the future resurrection (2 Cor. 1:22; 2 Cor. 5:5).

18.    The Spirit seals us unto the day of redemption (Eph. 1:13; 4:30).

19.    The Spirit sets us free from the law of sin and death (Rom. 8:2).

20.    The Spirit quickens our mortal bodies (Rom. 8:11).

21.    The Spirit reveals the deep things of God to us (1 Cor. 2:10).

22.    The Spirit reveals what has been given to us from God (1 Cor. 2:12).

23.    The Spirit dwells in us (Rom. 8:9; 1 Cor. 3:16; 2 Tim. 1:14; John 14:17).

24.    The Spirit speaks to, in and through us (1 Cor. 12:3; 1 Tim. 4:1; Rev. 2:11; Heb 3:7; Matt. 10:20; Acts 2:4; 8:29; 10:19; 11:12, 28; 13:2; 16:6,7; 21:4, 11).

25.    The Spirit is the agent by which we are baptized into the body of Christ (1 Cor. 12:13).

26.    The Spirit brings liberty (2 Cor. 3:17).

27.    The Spirit transforms us into the image of Christ (2 Cor. 3:18).

28.    The Spirit cries in our hearts, “Abba, Father” (Gal. 4:6).

29.    The Spirit enables us to wait (Gal. 5:5).

30.    The Spirit supplies us with Christ (Phil. 1:19, KJV).

31.    The Spirit grants everlasting life (Gal. 6:8).

32.    The Spirit gives us access to God the Father (Eph. 2:18).

33.    The Spirit makes us (corporately) God’s habitation (Eph. 2:22).

34.    The Spirit reveals the mystery of God to us (Eph. 3:5).

35.    The Spirit strengthens our spirits (Eph. 3:16).

36.    The Spirit enables us to obey the truth (1 Pet. 1:22).

37.    The Spirit enables us to know that Jesus abides in us (1 John 3:24; 4:13).

38.    The Spirit confesses that Jesus came in the flesh (1 John 4:2).

39.    The Spirit says, “Come, Lord Jesus,” along with the bride (Rev. 22:17).

40.    The Spirit dispenses God’s love into our hearts (Rom. 5:5).

41.    The Spirit bears witness to the truth in our conscience (Rom. 9:1).

42.    The Spirit teaches us (1 Cor. 2:13; John 14:26).

43.    The Spirit gives us joy (1 Thess. 1:6).

44.    The Spirit enables some to preach the gospel (1 Pet. 1:12).

45.    The Spirit moves us (2 Pet. 1:21).

46.    The Spirit knows the things of God (1 Cor. 2:11).

47.    The Spirit casts out demons (Matt. 12:28).

48.    The Spirit brings things to our remembrance (John 14:26).

49.    The Spirit comforts us (Acts 9:31).

50.    The Spirit makes some overseers in the church and sends some out to the work of church planting (through the body) (Acts 20:28; 13:2).

The Holy Spirit unites us to Jesus Christ and to His body. The Spirit reveals Christ to us, gives us His life and makes Christ alive in us. The Spirit takes the experiences of Jesus—His incarnation, ministry, crucifixion, resurrection and ascension—and brings them into our own experience.

Frank Viola is a speaker, entrepreneur, author and writer of the blog Beyond Evangelical. 

Photo by Aziz Acharki on Unsplash

Message Notes: DNA 03 – Pentecost Sunday: We Need Holy Spirit

#03 – PENTECOST SUNDAY: WE NEED HOLY SPIRIT

I       INTRODUCTION

A)  As we step into a new season we want to continue to ‘get back to the basics’ and focus on our DNA – who we are called to be as a church family.

B)  DNA is the fundamental and distinctive characteristics or qualities of someone or something. We want to take time in this season to focus on the fundamental and distinctive characteristics and qualities of TCC.

C)  We are growing, there are many great things going on but we also have a lot of work to do. We need to stay HUMBLE, HUNGRY and FOCUSED

D)  We want to continue to focus on our mission as a church family and dig deeper into the distinctives of what God has called us to do.

E)  Our Mission: To be a spiritual family where every person encounters God’s unconditional love, is established in their identity and equipped and engaged for their purpose

II     PENTECOST SUNDAY: THE IMPORTANCE OF THE HOLY SPIRIT

Acts 1:8 (NIV) – But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth

A)  The disciples were facing the daunting prospect of having to push forward without Jesus

B)  He had told them it would be better if he left: John 16:7 (NIV) – But very truly I tell you, it is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Advocate will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you

C)  The reason was that when the Holy Spirit came upon them they would have power – the same power that Jesus had on Him!

III   WHO IS HOLY SPIRIT?

John 14:16-18 (NIV) – 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. 18 I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.

A)  The Holy Spirit is the third part of the Trinity – He is God. He is a person, not an ‘it’

B)  He is our “paraclete” (advocate) – our counselor, aid, standby, support.

C)  He is here to help us, He lives with us and in us. He will be with us forever

IV   HOLY SPIRIT IN OUR LIVES

A)  We do not have to ‘live this life’ on our own but every step we can take with the Holy Spirit!

B)  He will:

1)   Live in you (John 14:17)

2)   Reveal all truth to you (John 16:13)

3)   Transform you (Titus 3:5)

4)   Empower you (Luke 24:49, Acts 1:8)

V    KEYS TO WALKING IN A GREATER RELATIONSHIP WITH HOLY SPIRIT

A)  Believe that He desires to fellowship with you.

B)  Welcome Him into your life and prioritize Him.

1)   “Good morning Holy Spirit”

2)   Give yourself to things that prioritize Him – Worship, pray in the Spirit, read the Word

C)  Guard your relationship with Him.

1)   1 Thessalonians 5:19 (NIV) – Do not quench the Spirit

2)   Ephesians 4:30 (NIV) – And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption

3)   We need to guard against things, attitudes, actions that will quench or grieve the Holy Spirit

D)  Yield to Holy Spirit: follow His leading and direction

1)   Each time we respond to, follow and/or yield to the Holy Spirit our relationship with Him will grow

2)   Bill Johnson: “The quicker I respond to the leading of the Holy Spirit the more power that is released. The longer I wait the less power manifests”

Check out my next post for notes from Frank Viola on “50 Things the Holy Spirit does in our Lives.”

Beth Moore: A Letter to My Brothers

My last several posts have really focused around the topic of women and their place in Christian ministry and leadership (which I believe they should have full access to – read my previous three posts for full details here, here and here). I was going to shift gears but one of our leaders Kelly Cameron passed this blog from Beth Moore onto me (if you are not familiar with Beth she is a well known and outstanding Bible teacher that is quite popular) and it really moved me. I think it so clearly outlines the challenges women face, and why we need to be vocal about seeing change (especially us men). In many ways, my heart is saddened that something like this even has to be written in 2018 but I applaud Beth for speaking out and join her in being hopeful that it will be part of the change that is coming.

A Letter to My Brothers by Beth Moore

Dear Brothers in Christ,

A few years ago I told my friend, Ed Stetzer, that, whenever he hears the news that I’m on my deathbed, he’s to elbow his way through my family members to interview me about what it’s been like to be a female leader in the conservative Evangelical world. He responded, “Why can’t we do it before then?”

“Because you know good and well what will happen,” I answered. “I’ll get fried like a chicken.” After recent events following on the heels of a harrowing eighteen months, I’ve decided fried chicken doesn’t sound so bad.

You can read the rest of the post here.

Should Women Preach? Can they Lead? Dealing with some of the “Tough Passages” in the Bible.

Today in my message at Toronto City Church I talked about why there are no ‘glass ceilings’ in the Kingdom of God and that women can function in any area of leadership and ministry. I shared twelve different scriptures/passages that spoke of women in ministry including pastoring, teaching, prophetic, apostolic ministry, deaconship and more.

As I mentioned I wanted to write a bit about some of the so-called ‘tough passages’ from the Bible that at first glance could seem to suggest that women should not be involved in all of these areas. I’m not a ‘buffet-Christian’ where I believe we can pick and choose what verses to believe and what ones to ignore and so it’s very important to me that we address these passages in a solid and balanced way. Continue reading →

Message Notes: DNA 02 – No Glass Ceilings in the Kingdom: Women and Ministry

#02 – No Glass Ceilings in the Kingdom: Women and Ministry

I       INTRODUCTION

A)  As we step into a new season we want to continue to ‘get back to the basics’ and focus on our DNA – who we are called to be as a church family.

B)  DNA is the fundamental and distinctive characteristics or qualities of someone or something. We want to take time in this season to focus on the fundamental and distinctive characteristics and qualities of TCC.

C)  We are growing, there are many great things going on but we also have a lot of work to do. We need to stay HUMBLE, HUNGRY and FOCUSED

D)  We want to continue to focus on our mission as a church family and dig deeper into the distinctives of what God has called us to do.

E)   Our Mission: To be a spiritual family where every person encounters God’s unconditional love, is established in their identity and equipped and engaged for their purpose Continue reading →

Some Thoughts Regarding the “Billy Graham Rule” and Friendships Between Men and Women.

This coming weekend at Toronto City Church I’m going to preaching on “No Glass Ceilings in the Kingdom: Women in Ministry” as part of our DNA Series; where we explore our mission and foundational elements of who we are as a church. My wife is away on a missions trip (for two weeks… pray for me people) so while she usually preaches on Mother’s Day, I’m up. I’m going to use the opportunity to teach on woman and ministry and why we embrace women having full access to participate in every aspect of Kingdom leadership and ministry. (My notes for it will be posted here on Sunday and you can listen to the message here early next week)

While it doesn’t relate directly to my message, I came across an interesting article recently entitled “It’s Not Billy Graham Rule or Bust” by Tish Harrison Warren that really got me thinking. Continue reading →