Hope Fellowship

Posts by Jeff Brewer

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Be a Gospel Detective

Like detectives, We need to be looking for connections between what we are called to do as Christians, and the gospel that is the foundation and power to complete these commands. ...

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Why we must think in a Christ-Centered Way

At the heart of the gospel and the Christian life is the person and work of Jesus. If Jesus is most excellent and above all and if Jesus is worthy of all the praise of the universe, then it would follow that for our thinking to be what Paul is calling for in Philippians 4:8, “If there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise” then it must find i...

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Josh Moody Article on Justification

Dr. Josh Moody, Sr. Pastor at College Church in Wheaton, joined us on Sunday morning, October 14. He preached from Galatians 2:11-14 "How One Long Word Can Make a Big Difference to Your Life." Dr. Moody wrote an article on justification that has been posted on Christianity Today Online. Since we have been going through our doctrinal statement as a church, and Dr. ...

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Why we should pray for our children to know Christ at a young age

I picked up Thomas Watson's "The Godly Man's Picture" off my shelf today and began reading the section, "the godly man strives to be an instrument for making others godly."Watson writes, "The godly man is not content to go to heaven alone but wants to take others there. Spiders work only for themselves, but bees work for others."He then applies it to how we might encourage...

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A Prayer We Should All Pray

Have you ever paused when someone asked you how they might be praying for you? It can be an awkward moment when we try to determine how much to share, or even what we feel is truly worth sharing. Sometimes, if we are honest, we can even respond with a request that we ourselves are not personally praying for! So how might we be praying for ourselves and seeking for other...

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Recommended Biographies about Missionaries for Children

I wanted to recommend a few resources that we have found really helpful and enjoyable for our girls as they have begun reading over the last few years. ...

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Quotes from the cutting room floor

So often each week as I prepare for the sermon I have a number of quotes that I have read that were personally encouraging but didn't fit into the sermon. It is my goal each week to post some of these quotes on Friday for your encouragement....

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Jonah Sermon Series starts this week

We will be starting a four week series on the book of Jonah this Sunday, April 29, 2012. In preparation for the series, take some time with your family to read the book of Jonah together....

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Shorter Ending of Mark

When we come to the end of Mark 16, in most English translations of the Bible there are brackets that include something like, "some of the earliest manuscripts do not include 16:9-20" which presents a question for those who are reading their Bibles and who hold it to be inerrant (without error in the original manuscript) clear and trustworthy. Perhaps you might think somet...

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R.A.I.S.E.D. Part 6

Jesus is reigning. He is king. In order to reign as king he must be alive. Verse 34, "David did not ascend into the heavens, but he himself says 'The Lord said to my Lord, Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool." Imagine a kingdom where there was a king who reigned as a tyrant for many long years. He had no patience or mercy for anyone who crosse...

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R.A.I.S.E.D. Part 5

Verse 32 says, "This Jesus God raised up, and of that we are all witnesses." The disciples all saw the risen Jesus as did more than 500 other people. Tim Keller wrote, "Even if you propose the highly unlikely idea that one or two of Jesus's disciples did get the idea that he was raised from the dead on their own, they would never have gotten a movement of other Jews to be...

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R.A.I.S.E.D. Part 4

If the whole plan was of God for the crucifixion and the resurrection, it makes sense that the Bible is unified in the story of redemption-- of it's promise and fulfillment. In verse 25, Peter quotes Psalm 16, which is seen as fulfilled in Jesus. David, as a picture of what the Messiah would be was dead and had been for a long time. Death held him in the tomb and it was...

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R.A.I.S.E.D. Part 3

"God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it." It is impossible for Jesus to be held in the grip of death. The same word for "pangs" here is used elsewhere of labor pains. Labor pains on a pregnant woman indicates that there is going to be a baby born. Pregnancy by it's very definition is not permanent. Jesus is un...

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R.A.I.S.E.D. Part 2

Part 2 of our Easter series of posts about the truth of the resurrection: I heard a speaker say recently that it was not as if the disciples were sitting around on Saturday night after Jesus died on Friday having a party saying, "I can't wait until tomorrow!" The disciples, though Jesus had clearly taught of his coming death and resurrection, didn't "get it" until he ap...

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R.A.I.S.E.D. Part 1

Over the next few days we're going to walk through Acts 2 to see how this first sermon by Peter speaks so clearly about the resurrection and why it is essential to Christianity. To do so, each point will fill out the acronym "R.A.I.S.E.D."...

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Looking for a Historical Novel to Read?

A few years ago I asked a friend about some good research on Pontius Pilate and the events surrounding the crucifixion of Christ and he recommended Pontius Pilate: A Novel by Paul L. Maier. He explained his unique recommendation by telling me that Dr. Maier was a top-notch historian who wrote a historical novel about Pontius Pilate in order to help people understand the h...

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10 Questions to Ask Yourself About Serving Others

Concerning serving others,the over arching question we could ask ourselves is about our understanding of how the gospel informs our service of others; "Do I see the gospel as both the remedy for my sin of selfishness and the motivation for Christlike service?" When we see the gospel as the solution for our sin and the motivation for serving others we can then ask ourselv...

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Definitions: Contextualization

Jonathan Dodson: "Contextualization is the intentional process of communicating the historic gospel and teachings of Jesus in contemporary cultural forms. [3] This may result in churches gathering in white tents or rodeo arenas, to hear how the grace rebuffs bootstrap religion among country folk in rural areas of Texas (also known as Cowboy churches). Alternatively, it may...

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A Question for Christmas: The True (almost) Tale of Amanda Snidefeller

A Short story for children (and adults!) that was written by Pastor Jeff Brewer about Amanda Snidefeller, the little girl who was positively fed up with Christmas. It was shared on Christmas Eve at Hope Fellowship....

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Behold Your King Sermon Series

At Hope Fellowship we have been looking at the incarnation through the lens of how Christ is our King. It has been a joy to worship together celebrating advent for the first time as a new church. The links to the audio for the four week series are now online. ...

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Joseph: No Understudy Needed?

Joseph often gets forgotten in the Christmas story. Russell Moore writes, "I played a cow in my first grade Christmas pageant, and I had more lines than the kid who played Joseph. He was a prop, or so it seemed for Mary, the plastic doll in the manger, and the rest of us, we were all just following the script. There's rarely much room in the inn of the contemporary Chri...

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Membership Class Location and Details

Our membership class is being held two separate weeks. You need only attend one class. Each class will be from 6-8pm on Sunday evening November 13 and 20th. Childcare will be provided each week. For directions, see our events page and click on Membership class....

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Day #14 Live with a Mission: Worship

Growing up in a large traditional church, all I can really remember about the worship service was wondering if it would be possible for me to swing from chandelier to chandelier in order to reach the platform from the balcony. It was clear that I wasn’t thinking through truth about God in those days, let alone contemplating what worship meant! Little did I know howe...

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Day #13 Live with a Mission: Love

I once knew an engaged couple whose whole relationship seemed to depend on the fact that they were engaged rather than on the reason why they were engaged. The relationship itself was nurtured through their constant (and somewhat sickening) reminders to themselves and others of the greatness of the relationship they were in. When they met other people they talked about ...

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Day #12 Live with a Mission: Proclaim

A friend of mine once told me that when he moved into a new house as a kid that he tied all of his best toys on the back of his bicycle and rode around the neighborhood trying to attract friends. If you’ve started a new job or moved into a new community, you’ve probably learned from experience that people usually don’t come knocking on your door to get...

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Day #11 Live with a Mission: Worship

As long as Rachel could remember she wanted to be an attorney. While it was a little awkward to be the only kid at halloween carrying a briefcase, she stuck to her dreams until she passed the bar exam on the first try. If people thought she was driven during law school they would have been surprised to learn that she actually had another gear in the workplace; no amount o...

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Day #10 Live with a Mission: Love

In the 1970 movie, Love Story, Ali MacGraw’s character says the now famous line, “Love means never having to say you’re sorry.” It seemed to fit in the movie (if you like that sort of thing) but frankly, it doesn’t sound to me as if it was good advice. It must not have clicked with John Lennon either because he quipped, “Love means h...

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Day #9 Live with a Mission: Proclaim

I read that if you want to count to a million without stopping it would take you 6 days, 22 hours and forty minutes. If you want to count to a billion it would take you 31 years and 252 days. A Trillion? Forget about it. 3,170 years. What does this tell me? First, who sits around thinking about this stuff? and second, I’m not even going to try to count to any...

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Day #8 Live with a Mission: Worship

Remember the Palm Pilot? Still use one? Probably not. Why? Because the palm pilot has gone the way of other first generation technology devices and disappeared into the realm of trivia questions (What is a bag phone?). But just a half dozen years ago you could have thrown a rock into a crowd of ten businessmen and hit twelve PDA’s. Now just try to go and buy o...

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Day #7 Live with a Mission: Love

I’ve not been to a high school reunion yet, but I don’t really feel like I need to go to one since I can see how much my friends have changed and how messed up they are in real time on facebook everyday. Since I wasn’t a believer in high school, not only do I wish that I could go back and have those years to do over again as a Christian, but I often th...

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Day #6 Live with a Mission: Proclaim

I once went on a week long trip to Daytona Beach with other college students during Spring Break—no, not that kind of spring break trip— it was with a campus Christian group! What I didn’t realize when I signed up for the week at the beach (or I blocked out of my mind) was the fact that we were going to walk up and down the beach and talk to students ...

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Day #5 Live with a Mission: Worship

One of the lessons I am trying to learn in parenting is to try and empathize more with my daughters when they are deeply distraught about something that I can’t quite understand. It’s tempting for me to think when the lost blankie can’t be found before bed or when the doll that they love was forgotten at a friends house that they just need to calm dow...

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Day #4 Live with a Mission: Love

History shows us that no army will get far without supply lines that link them to more materials, ammunition, and fuel for the battle. I feel the same way if we’re going on a camping trip— we’re only staying as long as we have good food and dry clothes— after that, I’m out—which means we don’t typically camp! ...

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Day #3 Live with a Mission: Proclaim

No one has to twist our arms to speak about things that we value––we easily speak of that which we love. Just ask someone why they bought the car they just bought. Or where they found a deal on something they were looking for. Or their favorite sports team....

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Day #2 Live with a Mission: Worship

Looking around at the people surrounding me singing and swaying to the worship music, I felt like a complete failure. I felt that I must be missing something because I didn’t feel what they seemed to feel as people closed their eyes and raised their hands. I expected that they felt some great surge of energy or force that you are supposed to experience when you si...

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Day #1 Live with a Mission: Love

Love has a limit, at least that is, if you are the NECCO candy company. Each year they make 8 billion of the small,chalky candy hearts to be sold on Valentine’s day. Each message of love can only contain a two line, 8 character message of affection for your sweetie. Over the years the messages and length have undergone quite a change—consider the piece of...

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Definition of the fear of the Lord

Doug O'Donnell defines the fear of the Lord in his new book, "The Beginning and End of Wisdom." ...

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The Freshman Fifteen

Fifteen ways for someone heading off to college to remember about glorifying God in your studies....

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Short Term Missions

So you went on a short term mission trip this summer and you are getting ready to come home (or you just returned home). Here are ten things to remember about the gospel, missions and humility as you process through your trip....

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The Importance of being made in the image of God

Why is it important to know that we are made in the image of God? The incarnation hangs on it....

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The Kingdom of God

This Sunday we will be focusing on parables about the Kingdom of God from Mark 4:21-34. Here is a great quote about the kingdom of God from John Frame....

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The Gospel Undermines Swaggering and Sniveling

A great quote by Tim Keller about how the gospel undermines both swaggering and sniveling. ...

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Hallelujah, What a Savior

The quote from James Edwards about Jesus functionally trading places with the leper by cleansing him. What a great quote!...

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To Love Your Neighbor Begins With Knowing Them

Ben Stevens writes in an article posted at The Gospel Coalition how we, in order to love our neighbors, must get to know them first. He also gives some very practical advice on how to get to know your neighbors. He ends with this: "You cannot love your neighbors if you don’t know them. Get it on the calendar and have fun." How true! ...

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How you can pray for Hope Fellowship

Seven things we can pray for from 1 Thessalonians 1:1-10 for Hope Fellowship....

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We are the Body Live Recording

The new song we sang last night by Mike Magnussen, "We are the Body" from Ephesians 4....

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Life Together

Dietrich Bonhoeffer writes in Life Together about fellowship and how we must speak God's Word to one another. ...

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A Great Show that Benefits a Great Ministry

STARS Family services annual fundraiser....

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Downloadable flyers for January 22 Worship Gathering

Download flyers to give to friends and neighbors for our January 22 gathering at the Lombard Community Building....

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Demolishing the Walls of Your Comfort Zone in Practicing Hospitality

From the Crossway.com blog: Practicing Hospitality, Pat Ennis and Lisa Tatlock ...

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Children's Story for Christmas Outreach

If you are like me, you are always looking for something to share with family members who will be gathering for Christmas in order to talk about Jesus and the hope we have in Him.  I wrote the following story, "A Question for Christmas" for a group of 3rd grade girls' "Christmas Cocoa" that a wonderful family at College Church hosted on Saturday, December 17, 201...

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A Right Definition of Apologetics

I have been working through The Theology of B.B. Warfield: A Systematic Summary.  I thought this section in chapter 2 was helpful in defining apologetics.  A Right Definition of Apologetics “Apologetics does not merely teach men how to defend Christianity; if it were only this, then it would belong to the discipline of practical theology.  Nor does...

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The Valley of Vision Prayer Guide

The Valley of Vision Prayer Guide by Joe Thorn...

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It's November, so it must mean Christmas music!

Christmas Music recommendations ...

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