These sketches/outlines are taken from messages delivered in SVCC's Sunday morning worship services.

  • Hidden in Plain Sight (Matthew 13.10-17)

    Matthew 13 is a compilation of wonderful parables. Before we dive into them in the coming weeks, I want to jump ahead to Jesus' explanation for His use of parables.

    What is a Parable?

    Literally, it means to “throw at” -- basically throwing to seemingly disconnected ideas together.

    A parable takes something familiar and compares it to something unfamiliar.

    It is the original “mashup!”

    Why Parables?

    Why not simply explain everything literally and be done with it? Here are just a few potential reasons ...

  • We Are Family (Matthew 12:46-50)

    A Few Points of Interest:

    1. Jesus had brothers and sisters. (v46)
    2. Spiritual family is more important than physical family to Jesus. (v48,50)
    3. Obedience is the primary requirement Jesus gives for belonging. (v50)
    4. Jesus doesn’t seek to dishonor earthly family, but to give God priority.

    Family Privileges

    Acceptance—No matter who you are or where you’ve been.
    “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5.8)

  • joyful woman
  • Seeking a Sign

    When the Levee Broke

    Many Seek Signs -- Few Seek Truth

    In the life of faith, signs are window dressing; truth is the foundation.

    The Problem with Signs

    Even the most convincing signs do not produce faith for someone who doubts.

    Signs and wonders may encourage faith, but they are not meant to be the basis of it.

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  • Say What

    Like a Boomerang

    Jesus teaches that we will be judged according to our own words. If we speak condemnation, we will be condemned. If we speak encouragement, we will be encouraged.

    “For with what judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with the measure you use, it will be measured back to you.”
    (Matthew 7:2)

    The Great Evangelical Mistake

    "Wait a minute -- I thought salvation was by faith alone?"

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  • Unforgivable

    What it ISN’T

    Murder (Moses), Adultery (David), etc. Even denying Christ (Peter)! There are examples of each of these among people of faith.

    What it IS

    A Persistent and Stubborn Refusal to Believe in God in the face of Overwhelming Evidence presented by the Holy Spirit.

    The Problem: Grapevine Theology

    Tradition can be an acceptable influence on our faith, but Scripture must come first.

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  • A Divided House

    The Blind, Mute and Demonized Man

    Represents the Gentiles (us)

    Blind (We do not recognize God)

    Mute (We do not acknowledge God)

    Demonized (We are prey to every howling wind of false doctrine)

    The Pharisees, rather than rejoicing, accuse Jesus of being Satan's servant.

    A Divided House Cannot Stand

    Jesus makes the simple point: You don't cut off the branch you are sitting on.

    Satan can't be in the exorcism business any more than a general can be in the business of shooting his own soldiers. It just won't last.

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  • Bruised Reed, Smoldering Wick

    The Gentleness of Christ

    Now mortally opposed by the Pharisees, Jesus could have fought His case (and won) but He instead withdrew to the quiet places, followed by the hungry and hurting masses.

    The Bruised Reed

    Useless, worthless, and pointless, the bruised reed is only fit to be discarded...

    Until Christ enters in and restores what everyone else rejects, that is.

    The Smoldering Wick

    Exhausted, noxious, and darkened, the smoldering wick is only fit to be snuffed out...

  • Nativity
  • Awfully Lawful

    Ugly Exposed

    Jesus just exposed the Pharisees’ ignorance of God’s word. Now he exposes their ignorance of God’s heart.

    The Danger Zone: Self-Confidence

    Smug self-confidence builds a wall around our own ignorance. Only the humble can enter into God’s kingdom. (This goes for the righteous and the unrighteous alike.)

    Losing My Religion

    How to ruin your inner Pharisee.

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  • Mercy Killing

    A Dangerous Pursuit

    Genuine Christianity is meant to bring true freedom; Christianity as a religion often brings nothing but condemnation.
    "There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus …"
    “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death." (Romans 8:1a,2)

  • Two Burdens

    Burdens of Doubt

    Judgment
    Jesus doesn’t mince words when it comes to judgment and hell.
    “Does God subvert judgment? Or does the Almighty pervert justice?” (Job 8.3)

    Selective Blindness
    This blindness ranges from turning a blind eye to the beauty of creation to staunch refusal to acknowledge all things spiritual.
    And Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, that those who do not see may see, and that those who see may be made blind.” (John 9.39)

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