About once a year for the last 3 years I have had the opportunity to preach at my church. Last week my pastors attended the Banner of Truth Conference in Philadelphia and they asked me to prepare a message. They are currently teaching a series on the law of God. Below is a link to the sermon. The intro was not recorded, so I included it below. What I’m saying won’t make sense without it:
Hurricane Katrina of the 2005 Atlantic hurricane season was the costliest hurricane, as well as one of the five deadliest, in the history of the United States. Among recorded Atlantic hurricanes, it was the sixth strongest overall. Hurricane Katrina formed over the Bahamas on August 23, 2005, and crossed southern Florida as a moderate Category 1 hurricane, causing some deaths and flooding there before strengthening rapidly in the Gulf of Mexico. The storm weakened before making its second landfall as a Category 3 storm on the morning of Monday, August 29 in southeast Louisiana. It caused severe destruction along the Gulf coast from central Florida to Texas, much of it due to the storm surge. The most severe loss of life and property damage occurred in New Orleans, Louisiana, which flooded as the levee system catastrophically failed, in many cases hours after the storm had moved inland. The federal flood protection system in New Orleans failed at more than fifty places. Nearly every levee in metro New Orleans was breached as Hurricane Katrina passed just east of the city limits. Eventually 80% of the city became flooded and the floodwaters lingered for weeks. At least 1,836 people lost their lives.
A levee is basically a wall that keeps water in its place. It is a boundary.
Now, is water evil? No. Water has it’s place and purpose, and a very valuable purpose, but New Orleans perished because their levees were neglected, the barrier separating the water from the land was neglected, and Hurricane Katrina overcame the city.
Jesus warns us of a similar force:
“But be on guard lest your hearts be overcharged with dissipation, and drunkenness, and the cares of this life – and that day [of judgment] come upon you suddenly like a trap. For it will come upon all who dwell on the face of the whole earth.”
1 Peter 2:11
Beloved, I urge you as sojourners and exiles to abstain from the passions of the flesh, which wage war against your soul.
What comes to mind when Peter warns us against the passions of the flesh? Do you think of sex, murder, and mayhem? Hopefully through this series on the law, we will come to understand just how subtle and deceptive the passions of the flesh can be.
Jon led us to communion after the message by quoting Matthew 11:
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
If you are interested in listening to my other sermons:
Other Portico sermons, including the current series on the law can be found http://porticochurch.com/resources.htm