Listen to or Download Sermons Preached at New Hope Church

January 17, 2021 – When God Crossed Over – Matthew 4:12-23

Ever heard that phrase “crossing the Rubicon”? There’s a story there, but the main idea is that such a movement puts someone beyond the point of no return. That’s what happens to Jesus in Matthew 4. But now that he’s irrevocably committed, what’s he going to do to secure His victory? Contrary to worldly expectations, He’s going to preach and heal the sick. He hasn’t just crossed over the Jordan River, He’s crossed over an ideological line about how to win in the world and put Himself on the losing side. But still we hear that “the Kingdom of heaven is near.”

January 10, 2021 – You Can’t Get Cookies Without Heat – Matthew 4:1-11

Is it hard to relate to this passage about Jesus being tempted? Jesus is unique, after all, and the temptations He faces are unique to Him, since He is the Son of God. On the other hand, the underlying dynamics of the temptations we can recognize in our own lives. On the third hand, what if what we think are temptations are really the Spirit’s invitation to mature in faith? How do we then keep God as our focus?

January 3, 2021 – Swept in the White Water of God’s Purposes

NHC welcome Jeff Hales to the pulpit.

December 27, 2020 – Why Be Baptized? – Matthew 3:13-17

John the Baptist, the very person meant to announce the coming of Jesus, is confused when Jesus comes to him to be baptized. That probably means we should, too. So what’s baptism about? Repentance from sin? Being marked by a spiritual experience? What does God reveal in the passage about Jesus’ baptism and ours?

New Hope Church Christmas Service 2020

It may not be the Christmas we wanted, but it is always the Christ whom we need. He is the new growth in a year of loss, the promised king in a world of chaos, and our future hope for a peaceable Kingdom.

December 20, 2020 – One of Us – Matthew 2:13-23

Hometowns take a lot of pride in their heroes since it’s nice to be inspired with the hope that even your place matters, and that you might matter, too. “Mr. & Mrs. So-and-so are like us!” In Matthew, Jesus’ story makes Him like the Jews as a whole people, and even like us all, as human beings. Jesus is vulnerable, like us. Jesus lives obscurely, like most of us regular Joes. And Jesus is also loved by His heavenly Father, and in that, too, He is like us and we are like Him.

December 13, 2020 – Let Them Seek – Matthew 2:1-12

Everybody in today’s passage is looking for something or the Someone, the Messiah. Herod is looking for security of power. The magi are looking for the portended child. The Jews are looking for their version of the Messiah. These searches are all different, with different outcomes, but behind them all is God, who is drawing the nations to Jesus. Matthew 2:1-12

December 6, 2020 – The Comfort and Judgment of Immanuel – Matthew 1:18-25

“Immanuel,” that name given Jesus that sounds so comforting, wasn’t comforting at all in the original prophecy. In Isaiah 7, it’s a sign of judgment. So then does God being with us mean salvation or judgment? Yes. It depends what you do next when God breaks into your life.

November 29, 2020 – The New Beginning, Matthew 1:1-17

The Jewish people needed a new beginning. They’d lost some sense of their place in history and wondered if God would, finally, act to change their situation. Along comes Matthew, who looks back at history and sees God working, generation to generation, through sinners and outsiders, to bring history to the birth of the one named Salvation Anointed. It’s that person who is the new beginning for all people and all times.

November 22, 2020 – Our Work and God’s Will for Inner Peace, Philippians 4:4-9

There are some blessings that come part-and-parcel with salvation, and there are others that require us to get to work with God. Inner peace is one of the latter. It takes work for us to rejoice well, to pray honestly, and to tend our thoughts, but God is ready to work us by His promise, His peace, and His presence.

November 15, 2020 – Never Lost to God, Isaiah 49:8-23

The Israelites had faced crisis after crisis, but after so much faithlessness to God, God let them a foreign empire drag them away from home. In foreign lands, many let the culture around them lead them astray, others forgot their past and who they were, and most lost their hope. But God still had plans. He would shepherd the wayward back, remember the lost, and gather a people greater than they had imagined.

November 8, 2020 – When Faith Disappoints – 2 Kings 19

Sometimes the crises don’t seem to end. We’ve done the right things, said the right prayers, and maybe even received hope from God. But the situation doesn’t change or even gets worse. What then? in 2 Kings 19, King Hezekiah is past despair about Assyria, and he has nothing left he can do but spread a vicious letter out in the temple and wait for God. But what if God disappoints?

November 1, 2020 – Choice, Son, and Grace – All God’s, Matthew 11:25-30

Things like salvation by grace and in Jesus are basic Christian beliefs that most of take for granted, but 500 years ago, they were beliefs held at risk of death. But for those who believe, even that risk is worth the trouble, because salvation can come no other way than by God’s choice, God’s Son, and God’s grace.

October 25, 2020 – When Sin Goes to Your Head, God Goes for the Heart – 2 Chronicles 26

This week’s ancient Israelite crisis is brought to you by King Uzziah, the man who had everything: good breeding, military success, popular acclaim, and God on his side. But it went to his head and pride went before the inevitable. And God? It turned out God was prepared to act to preserve His own holiness and work for Uzziah’s. Even a crisis of sin isn’t beyond God’s redemptive reach.

October 18, 2020 – A Big God Can Start Small, 1 Kings 17

In this week’s Israelite crisis, their king has become a worshipper of Baal and they appear not to care. To confront the crisis of faith, God causes a crisis of His own: drought followed by famine. It’s a big showdown, but the Bible steps away from the grand drama to show us a hidden prophet, a starving widow in a different country, and a dead boy. Why?

October 11, 2020 – What is That Crisis Really About? 1 Samuel 17

“David and Goliath” is among the most well-known Bible stories and is a common metaphor in use around the world. Even the story itself has become more of a spiritual metaphor (“slaying your giants”) than what it actually is: a true story involving armies, bronze weapons, an enemy, a hero, and, at core, God’s battle for the hearts of His people.

October 4, 2020 – The Son Does Nothing on His Own, John5:17-19, Matthew 10:5-6, Matthew 15:21-28

Supported Missionary, Guest speaker Eric Schering leads us today

September 27, 2020 – Here We Go Again – Joshua 2

If we’ve been in a crisis before, or been wounded deeply, we’re readier and steeled for the next time. But what if things are different? And what if maybe others aren’t so different, and maybe we’re not, but God has something different in mind? What if it’s redemption? This week, God’s redemptive work comes to the same old Israelites through an unexpected source.

September 20, 2020 – Are we there yet? – Daniel 12

In this most individualistic culture in the world, the Bible speaks clearly about the social responsibilities that flow from the call to love our neighbor. That means positive action on their behalf, not just avoiding the things we’re not supposed to do. But that still isn’t enough to make us holy – we’ll need something else.

September 13, 2020 – A Holy Love, Leviticus 19:1-18

In this most individualistic culture in the world, the Bible speaks clearly about the social responsibilities that flow from the call to love our neighbor. That means positive action on their behalf, not just avoiding the things we’re not supposed to do. But that still isn’t enough to make us holy – we’ll need something else.

September 6, 2020 – Lost in Wondering and Found in Jesus – Psalm 8

It’s big out there. Unimaginably vast. What a privilege of the modern age to know ourselves as motes of dust on a pale blue dot hanging in some mundane location in a cosmos bigger than we can know. Well, never mind. We have enough ways, in this world of viruses, corporations, and masses of humanity, to get ourselves feeling small. What are we that anyone should be mindful of us? But our Creator is.

August 30, 2020 Sermon – How Do Christians Handle Truth Wisely? – Proverbs 18:2, 4, 8, 15, 17, 21

Words so easily mislead, and truth can become a plaything of the proud. But if Christians are people of truth, who follow a person who calls Himself the Truth, how should we be wise about a world of many words? If we do manage to be wise, it will help our witness to Christ. Let’s listen to wisdom in Proverbs 18.

August 23, 2020 Sermon – All Alike – Romans 3:9-24

I’ve preached plenty of social-justice messages over the years, and many of us are involved in such work and trying to help our communities become better. And all Christians are called to work on themselves and against sin in a general way. But sometimes we get caught up in the means and methods and our hope gets shifted away from its true place, which is only and ever in Jesus Christ. Only in Him can sin be rightly battled; only in Him is hope found.

August 16, 2020 Sermon – Systemic Ends– Amos 8:1-12

Amos 8 is a brutal passage of judgment. The end of the Israelites’ systemic economic evils has come because their end has come. But that’s also good news. God doesn’t have infinite patience for injustice, but brings in the infinite goodness of His Kingdom. Is our gospel that big? Can we see the systems?

August 2, 2020 Sermon – DRIVE – Matthew 6:1-21 – Guest Speaker Andrew Earnshaw

Andrew Earnshaw from the Bible League will be the guest speaker for NHC this Sunday.  Andrew Earnshaw who is the director of US Ministry will be coming from Matthew 6:1-21 with a sermon titled: Drive. 

July 19, 2020 Sermon – If You See Only Drops of Water, You May miss the Ocean – Amos 5:4-24

Amos had begun to reference the Israelites’ hollow worship practices in chapter 4.  But in chapter 5, things get a lot more serious.  If the Israelites don’t grasp that worshipping God meant doing justice in their community, then their worship will be rejected, because if the first great commandment doesn’t lead to the second, then you haven’t obeyed either.

July 12, 2020 Sermon – The Economic Privilege of Cows – Amos 4

Following up a message about how God used Paul’s privileges, we now turn to the Old Testament, where we meet the prophet, Amos. Unlike most prophets, Amos was self-financed, which meant God leveraged his advantages to proclaim God’s message. But that word was about economic injustice – could the people even hear it? (Amos 4)

July 5, 2020 Sermon – Gospel Privileges – Acts 21:37 – 22:22

Privilege exists. There’s executive privilege, the advantages of carrying an American passport, the extras of wealth or class, race-based privilege, and so on. It takes humility to be aware of those realities, but simply critiquing systems that unfairly benefit some over others isn’t enough. The call for the servant of God is always to work redemptively, and to make all things serve the glory of God. Watch how Paul does it in the book of Acts. Know that God did it in Jesus. This message begins a four-week series, with the next three messages from the book of Amos.

June 28, 2020 Sermon – The Love of God is the Gravitational Center – 1 Corinthians 16

This week, we’re wrapping up our time in 1 Corinthians with those Christians who, like us, had all kinds of issues. But Paul ends as he began, with a focus on the work and grace of Christ, which is the force that draws us to God and reorients all of our life to Jesus.

June 21, 2020 Sermon – How Many Cooks in the Kitchen? – 1 Corinthians 14:26-40

Way back in February, we were cruising along with a sermon series on 1 Corinthians. We didn’t quite finish, but because Pastor Dan can’t help himself, he’s got a couple more things to cover from 1 Corinthians. This week: a few pro-tips about worship.

June 14, 2020 Sermon – Generation to Generation – Proverbs 3:1-12

For young families, this summer will be trying. They’ve been in the house together long enough, thank you, and there’s plenty more to come. For parents, this means keeping up discipline will be extra difficult. For kids, this means enduring parents’ impatience will take extra grace. But we all can look to our Heavenly Father to remember how to be wise with truth and love.

June 7, 2020 -Not Timid, Not Ashamed
2 Timothy 1:1-8
Guest Speaker: John Klompmaker

May 31, 2020 – Lessons for The Day: As Then, Also When

The locust plague that the prophet Joel describes had abated. Life was returning to agricultural Israel and they could celebrate a renewed relationship with God. But old habits die hard, and the old normal that got them in trouble in the first place was ready to re-establish itself in the new place. How could they keep the spiritual gains of the crisis? They had to keep looking forward to the Day of the Lord. So also the risks of coronavirus recovery: idolatry of the economy and technology, and human pride playing in politics. How can Christians hang on to what we’ve learned?

May 24, 2020 Sermon – The Glory of Limits – 2 Corinthians 4:6-18

Last week, from 2 Corinthians 1, we felt the comfort of knowing that our sins are forgiven and our future is guaranteed in Christ. Sometimes it’s tempting to take that comfort as meaning that Christians should be super-human because of faith. But in 2 Corinthians 4, we hear from Paul, an incredibly sacrificial missionary who nevertheless had to face his limits. When he did, he saw again that God gloriously worked even with the fragility of human beings.

May 17, 2020 Sermon – The God of All Comfort – 2 Corinthians 1:1-11

As the lockdown drag on and our mental states are becoming increasingly taxed (what day is it? why is it so hard to do as much as before? why do I not care if more chocolate will actually help?), we can use encouragement and so can our world. But Christians can best give out of what they have already received from God.

May 10, 2020 Sermon – A People Apart Together – 1 Peter 2:1-10

It’s hard to be apart. To the scattered Christians of Asia Minor, Peter wrote a letter of encouragement. They all shared things that bound them together in Christ. They all had tasted grace, they were all growing into a new life, they were all drawing life from God, and they were becoming we they were made to be. Those are what continues to bind God’s people together, even though we’re still apart.

May 3, 2020 Sermon – A Place Altogether Apart – 1 Kings 6

As we’ve not met in-person to worship for many weeks, we may be feeling the distance. We remember how we used to go up to God’s house together! But some of the power of having been together in God’s house is lasting, and reminds us that God is always with His people, wherever they are.

April 26, 2020 – The God Who Turns – Joel 2:1-17

Lots of religious people want to understand or assert that they understand what the pandemic is really about – maybe God’s judgment. But let’s look at an Old Testament judgment to see what we can learn that’s useful in the present situation. After all, what’s always more important isn’t to understand events, but to know God.

April 19, 2020 Sermon Message – Pastor Daniel Roels

There are many sources of ideas that the soul and body are separate and that heaven is the place our souls can be with God forever. But in fact, the Bible teaches that souls in heaven is temporary and that human beings can’t be all God meant us to be without bodies. That’s why God has promised a resurrection body and demonstrated it in Jesus. (1 Corinthians 15:35-58)

Easter Sunday – April 12, 2020
Forgiveness is only as real as resurrection – 1 Corinthians 15:1-11

Sometimes people get so caught up in their own fields or beliefs that they lose sight of reality. Christians, for our part, can over-spiritualize the Bible, forgiveness of sins, or even the resurrection. But the empty tomb could be entered. The folded burial cloth felt. And Christ has indeed been raised, bodily, and was seen, and touched, and heard. That reality keeps faith grounded and keeps it real.

Palm Sunday – April 5, 2020
A Difficult Gamble – Luke 19:11-27

As Jesus gets ready to accept the title of Messiah, but in a way that will lead to His execution, He warns the people through a parable that things are going to turn out differently than they expect. He’s a king alright, but one with expectations of His own, and what will His servants do in the time between His first and second comings? They can be governed by fear or step out in faith, taking a risky shot at obedience.

March 29, 2020 Sermon
A Restful Quarantine – Genesis 8

Noah got quarantined.  And without enough social distancing.  For over a year.  With in-laws and with animals.  A lot of animals.  While this may describe how some of our young families are feeling right now, Genesis 8 is a passage that offers us reasons to hope as the “flood” continues to rise.  God remains determined to uphold, bless, and renew His creation.

March 22, 2020 Sermon
The Choices of Faith – Job 1 & 2

We probably know about the dangers of the material prosperity gospel, but we can also be vulnerable to an unintentional prosperity gospel, especially when suffering comes. But faith challenges us to make choices to give suffering meaning, not to merely experience or accept it, and we can do this because Christ did first and most powerfully.

March 15, 2020 Sermon
When We Come Together – 1 Corinthians 10:14-18, 11:17-34

Today’s service is planned to be decidedly different, and one in which we experience the passage by putting ourselves in a situation more like the Corinthian Christians experienced when they celebrated the Lord’s Supper: a feast. So worship will be integrated with the message with the communion liturgy with a potluck, and we will learn in a new way what it means to come together as the people of God.

March 8, 2020 Sermon
Dangerous Associations – 1 Corinthians 10:1-17

One reason Christian ethical discernment stalls is that we’re so ready to use Christian freedom or social pressure as excuses. But those things blind us from a demonic reality: when we participate in social settings that are driven by an underlying idolatry, we are being drawn out to sea. But the most potent danger isn’t the idols, it’s the Sovereign God, who loves you too fiercely to share you.

March 1, 2020 Sermon
What if Gray Areas are Fine-Grained B&W? – 1 Corinthians 8

Christians are called to be in the world, but not of it. Easy to say, hard to do. To fulfill that calling, Christians have to do ethical discernment. Do gray areas stay gray with prayer and careful thought? How does Christian freedom interact with love? How will what I do or don’t do affect my family in Christ? In I Corinthians 8, Paul responds to Christians who might just want him to tell them what to do, but he wants them to learn to figure out what to do.

February 23, 2020 Sermon
Gray Areas Need Gray Matter – 1 Corinthians 7:1-17, 27-31

Having handled some of the easier cases the Corinthian Christians wrote about, Paul takes up some of the harder ones. Should spouses abstain? Should people even get married? What if someone is already married, but to a non-believer? What is someone is only engaged? Though Paul addresses their concerns, there are always situations that the Bible doesn’t give us clear instructions for what to do. So then what? We must practice discernment – using our gray matter and Biblical principles for the gray areas.

February 16, 2020 Sermon
Whose Body? (Habeas Corpus) – 1 Corinthians 6:9-20

Among their many issues, the Corinthian Christians seemed to believe that their physical bodies weren’t all that important, and so they could indulge in all kinds of sin, and in particular sexual immorality, as long as the soul somehow remained pure. But Paul writes that their bodies actually belong to the Lord, are part of who humans will be forever, and, like everything else about the Christian, should be put in God’s service.

February 9, 2020 Sermon
Right or Righteous – 1 Corinthians 5:12-6:11

We all like to be right. When we’re right, we feel accomplished, wise, powerful, and morally-insightful. But it’s so easy for those feelings to morph into the sin of superiority, and soon we have substituted being right for being righteous. In the first half of 1 Cor 6, Paul offers some ways to stay on track and fight for what really matters.

February 2, 2020 Sermon
Why We Must Judge – 1 Corinthians 5

“To go easy on sin is to go easy on God’s work of saving us from it.” – a quasi-quote from Rev. Dr. Cornelius Plantinga. Paul would have been able to express the same idea as he begs the Corinthians Christians to confront their wrongs so that they don’t lose their grasp on the gospel. But how can we judge without being judgmental?

January 26, 2020 Sermon
The True Gospel in a World of Fake News 1 Corinthians 2:6-16

Our world is swamped by fake news, click-bait, sensationalist headlines, conspiracy theories, and twisted advertising driven by political and profit motives. It’s easy to lose our sense of reality, and even easier to stop learning. But these issues aren’t new. Back in Corinth, Christians were grasping onto all the latest and greatest, sure that keeping up with ever-changing truth was the way to gain. In their day, it wasn’t the internet, but rhetoric. Smart people could persuade others to believe almost anything. But as knowledge came up for sale and social status, how could they and how can we maintain our hold on the truth of the gospel?

January 19, 2020 Sermon
Life-changing or Changed People?1 Corinthians 1:25-2:5

Cultural products around us constantly insist that they are “life-changing.” And we are tempted to buy, because we do want to be changed people. But to be changed, we need something outside the regular tired values of our culture. We need the values of the Kingdom, which puts the foolishness of God front and center, and therein, we can gain not just life, but become changed people.

January 12, 2020 Sermon
The Foolishness of What is Preached – 1 Corinthians 1:10-25

The Corinthian Christians had a chance to move up. If they allied themselves with the right apostle, or the right group, they could get ahead and score points. And that’s what it was all about in Corinth in those heady days of commerce and politics. And so the church suffered because the one thing that can save was set aside for human striving. But the church would live as much as it relied on the foolishness of the cross, which is power and wisdom for salvation.

January 5, 2020 Sermon
Are We Even Talking About the Same People? – 1 Corinthians 1:1-9

We open the year hearing Paul’s fine words to some Corinthian Christians. They have received grace, they are holy, they have riches of spiritual gifts – wonderful! But how does that square with the rest of Paul’s letter? Is he even talking about the same people when he talks about their rivalries, sexual immorality, bad doctrine, and disorder? Yes, but it’s not that Christian people are who they are because they behave consistently, but because God’s grace remains