Atlantic Gospel Chapel Messages

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Alex Kremer 08-29-2021 // The Gospel Reaches the Ends of the Earth; Acts 8:25-40

Following the explosion of the Gospel into Samaria, the Lord sends Philip from Samaria to a "chance" encounter on a desert road from Jerusalem to Gaza.  There he came across the entourage of an Ethiopian eunuch, "a court official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of her treasure;" and who had come to Jerusalem to worship.

In the ancient Mediterranean world, Ethiopia, now modern day Sudan, was considered the southern most reaches of the earth.  And here is a wealthy court official, a proselyte to Judaism, returning from a 1,200 to 1,800 mile pilgrimage to Jerusalem.  And as Philip is instructed to approach his chariot, it becomes apparent that he is reading from Isaiah, the prophet, specifically in Isaiah 53, regarding the suffering servant.  We read that beginning with this scripture, Philip preached Jesus to him.

In today's lesson, we see there are no chance encounters with God.  The Lord places us on specific paths at specific times to interact with the people He wants us to encounter.  The question is, do we take full advantage of those opportunities in order to faithfully proclaim the Gospel?

Thank you for listening to today's lesson.  May you be encouraged to share the Gospel wherever you are, and which whomever you meet.  And may you be blessed through the teaching of God's Word.

Alex Kremer 08-15-2021 // The God of History; Acts 8:4-24

It has been said that History is His Story.  This acknowledges that God is a God of history and works all things to His purposes.  Even in tragic events, such as the death of Jesus Christ and His saints, as seen in the stoning of Stephen, God continues to work.

In today's lesson, we see Saul ravaging the church, opening the great persecution of the church in Jerusalem and causing the church to flee.  But even in this we see God's hand, because the church, once confined largely to Jerusalem and Judea, now spread to Samaria.  This fulfills Christ's purpose for His followers to preach the Gospel in Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the ends of the earth.

Thank you for listening to today's lesson.  May you be blessed through the teaching of God's Word.

Alex Kremer 08-08-2021 // The Martyrdom of Stephen; Acts 7:54-8:3

It has been said that the blood of the martyrs is the seed of the church.  Throughout history, it is clear that martyrdom often results in major change.  The stoning of Stephen at the hands of the Sanhedrin opened the persecution of the church in Jerusalem.  But it also scattered the believers to remote areas, resulting in the church spreading throughout the regions around Israel.

Thank you for listening to today's lesson.  May you be blessed through the teaching of God's Word. 

Alex Kremer 07-18-2021 // Like Father Like Son; Acts 7:39-53

We all inherit different things from our parents.  Some of these we accept with pride, while others we would just as soon forget.

In Jesus' day, the Jewish people inherited the Law from their forefathers, as well as the Temple.  But they also inherited the rebellious nature of their forefathers.  And like us all, they inherited the sin nature of Adam.

In Acts. we see Stephen dragged into the Temple before the Sanhedrin; charged with blasphemy against Moses and the Temple.  As he make his closing arguments, he handed down the final verdict against his prosecutors - you are just like your fathers. 

Stephen again takes them back to the days of Moses, when the hearts of their fathers returned to Egypt.  Regarding the Temple, he puts it into the proper perspective.  If the highest heaven cannot contain the living God, then neither can this Temple.  But the elders of Israel placed it on a pedestal on which it was never meant to stand and corrupted their worship.

As you listen to today's lesson, may you be encouraged by the reminder that the God of the universe meets with His people wherever they are.

Thank you for listening.  May you be blessed through the teaching of God's Word.

Alex Kremer 06-20-2020 // Stephen’s Defense; Acts 7:1-14

As Acts 6 closed, we saw Stephen, "full of grace and power...performing great wonders and signs among the people."  Those from among the Jews who argued with him were "unable to cope with the wisdom and the Spirit with which he was speaking" (Acts 6:8, 10).  The Jewish leaders therefore brought Stephen before the Sanhedrin, bringing against him false charges that he spoke against the temple and against Moses, His servant.

In the opening portion of Acts 7, we see Stephen begin to make his defense.  First, we see him address those present as his brothers and fathers.  While his accusers treated him with no respect, Stephen responded with respect, establishing common through the worship of the same God.  But in his defense, he also gave an indictment of those accusing him.  His indictment focused on three themes:

  1. God, and therefore the people of God, are not restricted to a certain location, such as a land or temple.
  2. Israel has a history of rejecting the prophets and deliverers sent by God
  3. God's vindication of His servants.

Thank you for listening to today's lesson.  May you be blessed through the teaching of God's Word.

Alex Kremer 06-13-2021 // Stephen; A Turning Point for the Church; Acts 6:8-15

As we return to the book of Acts, we catch up with Stephen.  Up to this point, Luke's focus in Acts has been on the church in Jerusalem, the preaching, the growth, and the persecution has largely been in Jerusalem.

In Stephen, we come to a turning point in the book of Acts, from a focus from Jerusalem to Judea and Samaria.  We will see that the death of Stephen is the climax of the Jewish persecution in Jerusalem.  His death provided the impetus for the spread of the church into Judea and Samaria.  Finally, in Stephen, we are introduces to Saul of Tarsus, later known as Paul.

In today's lesson, we are introduced to the character of Stephen and the beginnings of the trial that will eventually lead to his execution.

Thank you for listening to today's lesson.  May you be blessed through the teaching of God's Word.

Alex Kremer 05-23-2021 // Homosexuality and the Bible

Homosexuality is an issue that has increased in prominence within our own world and culture, as well as the church.  The month of June is Pride Month, in which society, as a whole, celebrates and affirms the homosexual lifestyle.

But what does Scripture say regarding homosexuality?  And how do we respond to the world's claims, not only about the legitimacy of homosexuality, but claims that the Word of God affirms this lifestyle?  And finally, how does the Gospel inform our response to the world around us?

Thank you for listening to today's lesson.  May the Word of God provide you with guidance on this very relevant topic.

Alex Kremer 05-16-2021 // Create In Me A Clean Heart; Psalm 51:10-19

In Psalm 51 we see the penitent prayer of David following his sin with Bathsheba.  In the first part of this psalm, we saw David approaching God for forgiveness, grace and mercy on the basis of God's own character.

Now in the second half, we see David approaching God seeking renewal of his inner most being; "Create in me a clean heart."  As we look at David's heart, we see that his purpose was not just for his own forgiveness and renewal, but that as a forgiven sinner, he could instruct others on how to approach God to find grace and mercy themselves.

As you listen to today's lesson, may you be encouraged through this prayer that was born out of David's own failure and God's immeasurable grace.

Thank you for listening to today's lesson.  May you be blessed through the teaching of God's Holy Word.

Alex Kremer 05-02-2021 // Psalm 51:1-9; De-Sinning the Sinner

Many of us learn by doing.  Others demonstrate something and we do it.  When the disciples asked Jesus, "Teach us to pray...", the Lord prayed, demonstrating a pattern of prayer for His followers.

In the same way, Psalm 51 is a teaching Psalm.  In it, David offers a demonstration of how a sinner can approach God to confess our sin and to trust in the goodness and loving kindness of a God who is at once both Holy and gracious and merciful.

In Psalm 51, we see that David makes no attempt to down play or cover his own sin.  We see David confessing that his sin, although involving others, was ultimately against God alone.  And finally we see David repenting of his sin; acknowledging that God is just and blameless in His judgment.

But then David turns his demonstration to trust; for He turns to the very character and nature of God as both Holy and righteous, but also gracious and merciful.  And in his prayer, David asks three things of God:

  1. Purify me with hyssop; literally De-Sin me
  2. Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow
  3. Blot out all my iniquities

During today's lesson, may we be exhorted to look honestly at our own sin, then come to a Holy and Gracious Father, trusting Him to forgive our sin through the blood of His Son.

Thank you for listening.  May you be blessed through the teaching of God's Word.

Alex Kremer 04-18-2021 // You Are the Man; An Introduction to Psalm 51

When David wrote Psalm 51, he did so with the following introduction, "For the choir director.  A Psalm of David, when Nathan the prophet came to him, after he had gone in to Bathsheba. (NASB)"  As a psalm of contrition, seeking the Lord's pardon, Psalm 51 touches the sinner to our very core, because Psalm 51 sees us at the depth of our sin, but it also sees God at the heights of His mercy.

To get a full grasp of this Psalm, we must first look into the historical background that led David to write it.  In today's lesson, we conduct a quick examination of the rise, and downfall of King David.  We see him at his best; favored by God, receiving blessings from the Lord and showing great faithfulness to the Lord.  But we see him at his worst; the 'Man after God's own heart,' tempted to and caught up in sins of adultery and murder.

But at his lowest point, David turns to the only place he can go; into the extended arms of the Lord's mercy.  And it is there that we find our forgiveness.

As you listen to today's lesson, may you be struck not just by the depth of our own sin, but by the great heights of God's mercy toward undeserving sinners.

Thank you for listening to today's lesson.

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