Sermons on Matthew

Be Still

While Zechariah and Elizabeth appeared to be a couple running out of time, Mary and Joseph appeared to have time on their side. Only recently engaged, this couple had their entire lives in front of them. There would be a wedding and eventually a family. But God had other plans. Long before the wedding night, Mary was told that she was going to be a mother, and that her child would be the Son of God. Join us for part…

The Pursuit of Happiness

While we can never achieve holiness in our own power, the way we choose to live and interact with the world is a powerful witness to what we truly believe about Jesus and His Kingdom.  Passage: Matthew 5:3-14 Principle: Embrace your emptiness and experience God’s sufficiency (Matthew 5:3-6) Live sacrificially for the sake of loving others (Matthew 5:7-12) Practice: Be an agent for healing (Matthew 5:13) Be a source of light (Matthew 5:14-16) Daily Readings: Day 1: Matthew 5Day 2: 1…

Making the Kingdom Great Again

Jesus assembled a politically diverse group of followers to serve as His first disciples. Not only did He call Matthew — a Roman tax collector and sympathizer — but He also called Simon the Zealot — a hard core Jewish nationalist and revolutionary. These two men had about as much in common as Nancy Pelosi and Donald Trump! How was it possible that two people with starkly different ideas both followed Jesus and even gave their lives for His cause?…

The Secret of Loving Everyone, Always

Before leaving His disciples, Jesus gave them one commandment to obey and a great mission to accomplish. His Great Commandment was to love God and love others. His Great Commission was to go into all the world to make disciples. These verses are among His most often repeated words. At Southside, we believe a great commitment to the Great Commandment and the Great Commission will build a great church. If we are going to follow Jesus, we must do both. Join us for part two of Tightrope where we will…

Vacuums, Despots, and COVID-19

Aristotle said, “Nature abhors a vacuum,” meaning that every space in nature needs to be filled with something. This isn’t only true about black holes; it is true of the human soul. Jesus identified this truth by telling a strange story of an exorcism gone bad. But upon closer examination, we discover that Jesus’ warning is about much more than exorcism. He is warning us about the empty spaces in our lives and the consequences of ignoring those vacancies. Join…

Watch and Pray

We do everything we can to avoid painful realities. There are two techniques that have proven especially effective, however. These are hyperactivity and sedation. On one hand, we keep ourselves so busy that we stay ahead of the painful realities of our lives, and on the other, we sedate ourselves so we can sleep through the pain. We rush around all day until we finally crash,only to awaken to start the cycle all over again. Meanwhile, our souls are shriveling…

Tribal Identities

We all carry many identities: mother, son, doctor, student, American, Refugee, white, black, conservative, progressive, Southern Baptist, Atheist. The list can go on and on. In a culture that is increasingly divided by our identities, we must recognize the need to rest our identity in Christ. Only when our identity is in Christ can we transcend our tribal identities and truly love our neighbors. Join us for part 7 of Losing My Religion where we will look at the problem…

Licking Cups

Recent surveys have revealed that a growing number of people no longer identify with any religion. They do not claim to be protestant or catholic, they are not affiliated with Islam or Hinduism, they simply claim no religious affiliation. They have come to be known as “nons.” If this group were its own religion, it would be the fastest growing in America. Jesus was a friend to the irreligious. He attracted the sinners and the tax collectors while the religious…

Walking Buddies

Road trips are always more fun when you travel with people you love. For three years, Jesus and His followers traveled together throughout the Judean countryside. Along the way, the disciples learned a lot about each other and God’s Kingdom. Throughout the New Testament, believers worked together to serve the church and accomplish God’s will. It is in community that God reveals His plans and purpose. In part four of Walk This Way, we look at the importance of community in…

So Close We Could Taste It

If you’ve ever had dinner at a nice restaurant and left the table, you probably returned to find your napkin neatly folded and reset in place. Proper dinner etiquette teaches that what we do with our napkin when we leave a table is an important indication as to whether or not we plan to return. When Jesus ate His Last Supper with the Disciples, He left a very important clue about what was about to happen and His intention to…

We Look Beyond

If you’ve ever had dinner at a nice restaurant and left the table, you probably returned to find your napkin neatly folded and reset in place. Proper dinner etiquette teaches that what we do with our napkin when we leave a table is an important indication as to whether or not we plan to return. When Jesus ate His Last Supper with the Disciples, He left a very important clue about what was about to happen and His intention to…

Temptation

You may not consider temptation to be a boundary God uses to direct your path, but throughout history, great people of faith have struggled with all kinds of temptations. Some successfully resisted, and others gave in, but all came to understand that the temptations they faced were boundaries marking out God’s place of protection and provision. Even Jesus faced intense temptation as He began His public ministry. In part six of Boundaries, we will consider the temptations Jesus faced and…