Romans, Vol. 6: You Gave Me Life Now Show Me How to Live

Paul’s letter to the church in Rome pivots in the opening verses of chapter 12. Everything that comes before serves as a “therefore” for this movement into practical living. And we, as good Americans, love practicals. We love to do. We love to be pragmatic. Too much theological ruminating makes us queasy. In Paul’s mind, though, chapters 12-15 can’t even be understood or implemented without all that came before. The “therefore” of God’s grace has given birth to a new way of living.

Jesus gave us life and he will show us to live that life.


"Deliverance, Purim and the People of God" – Esther 8:3-10:3

Speaker: Nathan Hrouda  Date: Oct 30, 2016

Sometimes God chooses to deliver his people from trouble by working behind the scenes—in the small and seemingly random events of life. But what about the times we aren't delivered? Where is God? Even if our trials endure in this life, Jesus secured the ultimate deliverance for us on the cross.


"The Feast with a Foe" - Esther 6:14-8:2

Speaker: John Larsen  Date: Oct 23, 2016

The feast Esther held for the king Ahasuerus and Haman was all about irony—and propitiation. Propitiation is an offering that appeases the wrath of an offended party *and* makes them favorable to the offender. In wrath, God ironically turns the plans of the wicked back on their own head. By grace, God ironically brings good for the suffering of the righteous.


"Sleepless in Susa" - Esther 6:1-13

Speaker: Perry Paulding  Date: Oct 09, 2016

Very small causes can have very large effects. The entire Jewish race was spared extermination because King Ahasuerus couldn’t sleep one night. And while God doesn’t always thwart our attempts—or the attempts of others—to do ourselves harm, our time is in hands. The unfathomable power of God is behind every moment of our lives. This truth should move us to a deep humility and profound happiness.


"For Such a Time as This" - Esther 4-5

Speaker: Aaron Ritter   Date: Oct 02, 2016

God has positioned you in the space-time continuum for a particular reason. He has a good plan for you. But that plan is first about his honor. He wants you to speak and to stand for him. This requires sacrifice and a denial of our own honor. Esther was willing to sacrifice herself so that others could be saved, and Jesus is the ultimate fulfillment of Esther’s example. To carry out the purpose God has for you, you have to look to the cross.


"Suffering Unjustly in the Fear of God" - Esther 2:19-3:15

Speaker: Nathan Hrouda  Date: Sep 25, 2016

How do we "seek the welfare of our city" (Jeremiah 29:7) in a world oftentimes ruled by evil people? The church needs to be present and distinct—bringing good and being ready to suffer for doing right. To do this, we must remember that God is not surprised by our circumstances by evil actions. And we must remember who we are. We are citizens of heaven. Our first allegiance is to God. The only way to seek the welfare of our city is to put all of our hope in our eternal home.


"A Cinderella Story (Only Seedier) - Esther 1:1-2:18

Speaker: Perry Paulding  Date: Sep 18, 2016

Esther is a story about how God is at work to protect, bless and deliver his beloved people—even when he can seem hidden to us. God’s plans are neither hindered nor thwarted by carnal, secular or worldly events. Nor are his purposes frustrated by moral failures. Esther was like us—flawed, human, struggling to live out her faith in God. But Jesus chooses us—common, lowly sinners—to do his work and be his bride.