Sermons

Peace with You

Peace with You

by Larry Murray | Christmas Peace

Each year, Time Magazine features a Person of the Year and profiles a person, a group, an idea, or an object that “for better or for worse… has done the most to influence the events of the year.” For 2020, the TIME person of the Year is…Mayhem. For so many, 2020 has been a difficult year of health concerns, financial struggles, political turmoil, relational conflicts, disappointing cancelations, technology changes, social distancing, and more. For many, this Christmas season is anything but peaceful.

What we need this Christmas, more than ever, is peace. Not peace like the world offers us, but the peace of Christ. As Jesus prepared to go to the cross as our Prince of Peace, He encouraged the Disciples with a promise of peace, His peace in the middle of trouble and fear (John 14:27-30).

sermon by: Larry Murray
date: 12.13.2020
Link to Advent Service and Sermon Video

Peace on Earth

Peace on Earth

by Larry Murray | Christmas Peace

In Luke 2:14 the angels proclaimed to the shepherds in the fields of Bethlehem, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and peace on earth to people he favors!” Often, as we look around the world, we wonder where is this Christmas peace on Earth?

In the city of Bethlehem a few years ago, a fight broke out in the Church of the Nativity built over the traditional site of the birth of Jesus. The conflict was between two groups of Christians – the Armenians and the Greek Orthodox battling in Bethlehem. Hundreds of clergymen fought with brooms as they traded accusations about one side encroaching on the other’s domain within the church premises. This squabble over sacred space was over who should clean which area of the ancient church, a privilege parallel to ownership of the area. Hence, the weapons of warfare – brooms! Thankfully, no one was seriously injured, and nothing was physically damaged. But, what about the reputation of Jesus, born the Prince of Peace? What does it say to the world when they see Christians plagued by a lack of peace with one another? What does it communicate about the life of Jesus when there is no peace on earth among His followers? Where is the Christmas peace on Earth? Where is the peace in our own hearts?

Peace isn’t the absence of conflict, it’s the presence of Christ. Peace isn’t based on the external circumstances of our world, but the internal transformation of our hearts. There is peace on earth and glory to God because of the birth of a baby – a Savior born for you, who is Christ, the Lord.

sermon by: Larry Murray
date: 12.06.2020
Link to Advent Service and Sermon Video

Prince of Peace

Prince of Peace

by Larry Murray | Christmas Peace

In a world of conflict, chaos, and division, peace is something we long for and we desperately need. People talk about peace treaties and times of peace. Most of the time, it means the absence of war or conflict. In the Bible, peace (Hebrew שָׁלוֹם Greek εἰρήνη) refers not only to the absence of conflict but also the presence of completeness. True peace takes what is broken and restores it to wholeness – whether that’s in our world, our work, our homes, or in our hearts.

The prophet Isaiah (Isaiah 9:6-7) looked forward to a future king, a Prince of Peace, whose reign would bring Shalom שָׁלוֹם with no end. This future king would make right all wrongs, heal all that has been broken, and restore to wholeness all relationships. Most importantly, He would restore to wholeness the broken relationship between humans and their God.

So this Christmas season, we celebrate peace – Shalom (שָׁלוֹם), Eirene (εἰρήνη) – that came through a Child born “the Prince of Peace.”

sermon by: Larry Murray
date: 11.29.2020
Link to Advent Service and Sermon Video

Christmas Peace Sermon Series

Advent 2020 – Christmas Peace

In a world of conflict, chaos, and division, peace is something we long for and we desperately need. With the conflicts of COVID-19, the divisions of politics, and the factions within families, and the distress of our hearts, we hunger and thirst for peace. 

Peace, although a very common word in English, means different things to different people. People talk about peace treaties and times of peace. Most of the time, it means the absence of war. 

Peace is also a very important word in the Bible that refers not only to the absence of conflict but also to the presence of something else. In the OT, the Hebrew word is Shalom שׁלום. In the NT, the Greek word is Eirene εἰρήνη. The most basic meaning of Shalom is complete or whole. Shalom can also relate to a person’s well-being. In the book of Proverbs, to reconcile or to heal a broken relationship is to bring shalom. It doesn’t mean that people just stop fighting, but they start working together in harmony.  

So where do we find this kind of peace today that makes us complete, whole? Christmas Peace anticipates God’s plans, His promises, and His presence to restore wholeness to all that is broken in this world. 

Join the PBC family during the Advent Season as we experience peace with God, peace from God, and the peace of God because of a baby born in Bethlehem.

November 29 – Prince of Peace; Isaiah 9:6–7
December 6 – Peace on Earth; Luke 2:14 

December 13 – Peace with You; John 14:27
December 20 – Peace of Christ; Colossians 3:15
December 27 – Peace with God; Romans 5:1 

Peace isn’t the absence of conflict in our world, it’s the presence of Christ in our hearts.

Turning Complaints to Thanks

Turning Complaints to Thanks

by Larry Murray | Thanksgiving

 

This year, more than ever before, we have plenty of reasons for complaints. Coronavirus, cancelations, elections, inconveniences, changes, disappointments, loss, frustrations. It seems everything is harder this year whether you’re a teacher or a student, a doctor or a patient, a parent or a grandparent, a first responder or a volunteer. We’ve had to adapt to new technology like Zoom or Google Classroom. We’ve had to deal with social distancing and other COVID-19 protocols. We know that we should “rejoice always, pray continually, and give thanks in all circumstances,” (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18), but sometimes it’s just difficult.

Psalm 106 reviews the Israelites’ history of complaints (and ours). When we thoughtfully consider who God is and what He’s done, we can turn our complaints into thanks!

sermon by: Larry Murray
date: 11.22.2020

Authentic Christianity in the 21st Century

Authentic Christianity in the 21st Century

by Larry Murray | Authentic Christianity

 

How can you tell the difference between real money and counterfeit? For example, how can you know that you have a real $20 bill? If you have any cash or bills, take one out and look at it with me. One of the easiest ways is to hold it up to a light to expose some hidden things. Then, you compare what you have with the standard for authentic, genuine U.S. currency.

In the same way, there are specific ways you can recognize an authentic Christian. That’s what Paul’s letter to the Corinthians is all about – identifying authentic Christians in a world that says, “live for self.” Join us as we conclude our series, “Authentic Christianity,” from 1 Corinthians.

sermon by: Larry Murray
date: 11.08.2020

The Pursuit of Love

The Pursuit of Love

by Larry Murray | Authentic Christianity

​Each of us is like a piece of a jigsaw puzzle. Every piece has its place in the Body of Christ. When all the pieces fit together, the world can see a beautiful completed picture of the body of Christ.

1 Corinthians 14 deals with the way spiritual gifts (specifically prophecy and tongues) are used within the body of Christ – to build up the church in love. Love is more than an emotion; it’s the way Jesus builds up His church.

sermon by: Larry Murray
date: 11.01.2020

The Power of Love

The Power of Love

by Robert Matthews | Authentic Christianity

In the context of division in the church of Corinth over spiritual gifts, Paul points believers to the power of unconditional love based on the person, character and actions of Christ which  seeks the well-being of others to the exclusion of ourselves. Robert Matthews continues our series in 1 Corinthians 13:4-13. Love is more than passion; it’s the power of the Gospel put into action to heal division.

sermon by: Robert Matthews
date: 10.25.2020

The Priority of Love

The Priority of Love

by Larry Murray | Authentic Christianity

1 Corinthians 1-12 points to all kinds of problems in the Corinthian church—and one of the biggest is how they treat one another. The root of the problem of divisions, factions, conflicts in Corinth was that they were not loving one another. The solution to their differences was not better leaders, more information, advanced knowledge, better communication, more dynamic spiritual gifts, but a different kind of love. Not love like the world gives, but love like the Savior, Jesus. Sacrificial love is the indispensable priority that gives meaning to everything we do (1 Corinthians 13:1-3).

sermon by: Larry Murray
date: 10.04.2020

Sunday Service Times

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 (Student Ministry Building)

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