Praising God at ALL Times

Praising the Lord at ALL Times

by Larry Murray | Psalm 34

In Psalm 34, praising God is encouraged, explained, and exemplified. Whether in good times or in dark times David offers up praise to God. He says, “I have reason to praise the Lord– join me!”

Psalm 34:1-3 uses four different Hebrew words to describe how we praise the Lord together: 

  • Barak בָּרַךְ (bless)
  • Halal הָלַל(praise/boast)
  • Gadal גָּדַל(proclaim)
  • Rum רוּם(exalt)

“I will bless the Lordat all times; His praise will always be on my lips.I will boast in the Lord; the humble will hear and be glad. Proclaim the Lord’sgreatness with me; let us exalt his name together. Psalm 34:1-3

sermon by: Larry Murray
date: 08.11.2019

It Is Well with My Soul

Horatio Spafford had known peaceful and happy days as a successful lawyer in Chicago until a series of tragedies impacted his life starting with the great Chicago fire followed by the drowning of all four of his daughters. Spafford received sustaining comfort from God that enabled him to write, “When peace, like a river, attendeth my way, when sorrows like sea billows roll—Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say, It is well with my soul.”  This well-known hymn comforts and encourages us today as we face the hardships of life and heart-aches of death. Knowing the story behind the lyrics by Horatio Spafford adds even deeper significance to their meaning.

In the same way, the background story of what David was experiencing and feeling as he wrote Psalm 34 encourages us to praise the Lord all times in any circumstances of life.  As we look at the things that happened to David (1 Samuel 21), we begin to see how God uses similar situations in our lives.We discover how the fearful experiences of life cause us to fear the Lord – more.

sermon by: Larry Murray
date: 08.04.2019

Under Construction

Under Construction

by Larry Murray | Identity in Christ

Construction on Interstate 35 in Texas began 60 years ago in 1959. During the Cold War, it was the vision of President and former General Dwight D. Eisenhour to have the infrastructure, an interstate highway system that might be necessary for mass movement if war came to U.S. soil. In Texas, I-35 spans over 500 miles from Laredo on the Mexican Border to Gainesville. It was operational ten years later, in 1969, but various sections of the road have been under construction for repairs and expansions ever since then. Many of us have been on there, stuck in traffic, forced to make detours, or make a pit stop at Bucces. It seems I-35 will never be completely finished.

Our lives are similar. We’re constantly under construction. We live in the era between Christ’s ascension to Heaven & the coming of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost and the second coming of Jesus for us, His church. It’s an era described by theologians as “already, but not yet.” There is a tension between who we already are through our identity in Christ, and what we see ourselves to be in our daily experience. We’re under construction.

sermon by: Larry Murray
date: 07.28.2019

You are a SAINT

What or who comes to mind when you think of a “SAINT”?
– The apostle Paul? Peter? Francis of Assisi, Mother Theresa, or Billy Graham?
– A wife who puts up with an insufferable husband?
– An employee who endures the rants of an unreasonable boss?
– A mediocre football team from New Orleans with an aging quarterback?
– Do you think of St. Patrick, the patron saint of spring parades and green beer?
– Or the most famous saint, St. Nicolas, better known in these parts as Santa Claus?

“Saint” seems to be the apostle Paul’s favorite name for Christians (39 times in Paul’s letters). The name, “saints” is also used prominently for faithful witnesses of Christ in the book of Revelation. So what, or more importantly, WHO, is a saint? If you have trusted Jesus, the Eternal Son of God, as your death substitute on the cross and believe that He rose from the dead – YOU are a SAINT. All believers in Christ are saints.

sermon by: Larry Murray
date: 07.21.2019

Members of One Body

Considering the church as the “Body of Christ” (Romans 12:4-5) is more than simply a figure of speech or a helpful metaphor. The church is the primary way Christ works in the world today. We, as His body, represent Christ to the world. It is not only the church that is the body of Christ; the church AND Christ together constitute the body of Christ. We are part of Christ. We are connected to Christ. And so, we find our identity together in Him so that we function as one body in expressing His life in this world (1 Corinthians 12:12-27).

sermon by: Larry Murray
date: 07.14.2019

Servant of God

Everyone wants to lead. No one, it seems, wants to be a servant.

In a world that values positions of power and influence, Jesus taught His disciples that their true identity is as a servant of God. Jesus understood His identity as a suffering servant. He knew His destiny as a selfless servant. He had security in His relationship with the Father that allowed Him to be a sacrificial servant. Following Christ, Paul, the apostle, understood his new identity as a servant of God. As he introduced himself to the Romans (Romans 1:1), he identified himself as a servant of Christ Jesus.

When you find your identity in Christ and base your value or worth on your relationship to Christ, you are free from the expectations of others, and that allows you to really serve them the best.

sermon by: Larry Murray
date: 07.07.2019

Secured by the Holy Spirit

Secured by the Holy Spirit

by Vasily Dmitrievsky | PBC Sermons

Praise the Lord for the work of the Holy Spirit in our lives. The Holy Spirit’s role in our lives is not only crucial for our salvation, but essential for our sanctification and vital for our deposit or guarantee of eternal life with our Triune God.

sermon by: Vasily Dmitrievsky

Free & Forgiven

On June 19, 1865, two months after the Confederacy surrendered to conclude the US Civil War, Union General Gordon Granger led a group of federal troops into Galveston, Texas. Maj. Gen. Granger issued this declaration: “The people of Texas are informed that, in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, ‘all slaves are free.’  Slaves were legally declared free. But old habits, sinful habits, die hard.  

Exactly 150 years to the day after Gen. Granger’s declaration of freedom, Dylann Roof entered Emanuel African Episcopal Methodist church in Charleston, SC and killed nine of our Christian brothers and sisters in cold blood, leaving another alive to tell what had happened.

Rather than retaliate or start riots, something truly remarkable happened. Surviving family members of the Emanuel nine chose to forgive a racist murderer because they had been freed from sin and forgiven by the blood of Christ (Ephesians 1:7-8).

When believers in Christ, like those in Charleston, find their identity in Him, that’s amazing grace. Freedom comes from the blood of Christ. Forgiveness is only possible from the cross of Christ. God’s favor comes only by the grace of Christ. Our identity is in HIM.

When we find our true identity in Christ, we experience freedom from sin and forgiveness of sin to enjoy the favor of His grace. It’s only by the grace of Christ are we able to set others free and forgive them.

sermon by: Larry Murray

New Creation

Who are YOU?  How do you see yourself? Each of us thinks, feels, and acts on the basis of how we see ourselves. The problem with determining your personal identity, worth, or value from any of these is that all of them are temporary and will eventually become meaningless and will ultimately leave you feeling worthless.

In contrast, here’s what the Bible explains: Your true worth and your greatest value in life has everything to do with who you are in Christ Jesus. “In Christ” is a phrase Paul used repeatedly (Ephesians 1:3-10, 2 Corinthians 5:17) to talk about a believer’s true identity based on one’s spiritual, eternal, unchanging, and unconditional relationship to Christ.

sermon by: Larry Murray

Sunday Service Times

9:30 am
Adult Life Connection Classes
Estudios Biblicos en Español
Children's Classes
Junior High Senior High 

10:30 am
Coffee and Fellowship

11:00 am
Communion Worship Service in English (Auditorium)
K- Grade 5: Children enjoy worship service in the main auditorium with their families. Children will be dismissed to Children's Church midway through the service.

Servicio de Adoración en Español
11:00 am (Fellowship Hall)


Dr. Constable’s Bible Study Notes

Dr. Constable’s Notes are freely available providing commentary on all 66 books of the Bible. Click HERE for Web-based format (best for viewing on-line) or click HERE for PDF format (best for printing).


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