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SERMON NOTES @ Church of Christ in Nations (COCIN) Area 1, Garki - Abuja, Nigeria on 12th July, 2015
Speaker: Evangelist Nuhu Bakwa
Topic: As my Father sent me, even so I send you
Theme: Growing Up in Christ
Sub-Theme: Growing in Love
Service Leader: Elder Boniface Katlong
Text: John 20:19-23

God has given every child of God authority to preach the Gospel. Important terms to note from the passage (John 20:19-23):
'Just as' (verse 21): this means 'in like manner'
'Whosoever' (verse 23): this relates to choice.
'Father' (verse 21): this refers to the Almighty God. Every other god apart from the One living God is useless!
'Send': this means to cause or ask someone to go and do something

NOTE: All of us have been sent by Christ to preach the gospel (Matthew 28:19). Before you go, you must ensure that you have a relationship with God
Having a relationship with God starts by being born again; accepting Jesus as your Lord and personal Savior (John 3:3)
Jesus cannot trust a sinner or an unbeliever with the gospel of salvation! - You must be known by Him in order to work for Him acceptably
Jesus has not lowered or changed His standards of loyalty and holiness after these many years
Hebrews 13:8 - 'Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.'

1) As a Savior into the World - Jesus came to save those who are in darkness (see: Matthew 1:21)
He is sending you also to go and preach the gospel of salvation because the world is reeling in sin

2) As Christ the Lord - The word 'Christ' means 'the anointed one.'
When God sent Jesus, He was full of anointing
The Holy Spirit empowered Him to do what God sent Him to do
Without the Holy Spirit, you are spiritually impotent & powerless
It is impossible to serve God using human ability and wisdom: You need divine endowment that is available through the Holy Spirit

3) As God into the World - Jesus came as God, that we might worship Him and that He may subdue other gods on in the World under His supreme authority
Exodus 7:1 -'And the LORD said unto Moses, See, I have made thee a god to Pharaoh: and Aaron thy brother shall be thy prophet.'
As a child of God, you are sent to the world as God's own representative everywhere you go
No other god is supposed to reign over you anywhere you are - See: Daniel 3:28-29 and 4:34-35

4) As the Redeemer - To redeem means to recover ownership of something by buying it back or to liberate by payment of a ransom
Jesus bought us back (to Himself) after being previously sold out to sin
1st Corinthians 6:20 - 'for you were bought with a price. Therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God's.'
The price for your redemption is the blood of Jesus. You are sent by Jesus into the world as a 'trader' to facilitate the exchange of the sins of people with Jesus Christ

5) As a Man of Sorrows - John 15:18 - 'If the world hates you, you know that it has hated me before it hated you.'
You are to preach the gospel of salvation regardless of any pain or suffering you encounter in the process
The greatest suffering Jesus experienced was rejection by God His Father when He bore the sins of the world on the cross (see: Matthew 27:46)
A minute without Christ is not worth living
Acts 17:28a -'For in him we live, and move, and have our being...'
NOTE: You have been called to go and suffer in like manner

6) As a good Shepherd - A Shepherd is a person who is responsible for taking care of and nurturing others (the flock)
You have been called also to go and take care of others. You have been sent by God to bring the message of peace to the world.
As a Christian, you have an obligation to minister comfort to those around you and 'gather the flock' together for Christ

7) As a Teacher - Jesus went everywhere to preach the gospel, even when the conditions were not right or perfect
Acts 10:38 - 'How God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Ghost and with power: who went about doing good, and healing all that were oppressed of the devil; for God was with him.'
Matthew 28:19 - 'Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.'
Today, ungodly and perverted teachings (of God's Word) are prevalent everywhere (even in some Churches)
NOTE: Your life is a message. People are observing and learning something from your life. What are you teaching with your life as a Christian?
You are sent by Jesus everywhere for the primary purpose of teaching God's Word - Are you fulfilling that responsibility?

8) As a Prophet - Everything Jesus prophesied came to pass
As a child of God, you are supposed to know everything in advance
Amos 3:7- 'Surely the Lord GOD will do nothing, unless he reveals his secret to his servants the prophets.'
However, when you get revelations from God (through dreams, visions, word of knowledge, etc.), do not hoard them. TeIl it to the church

9) As a miracle worker - Acts 10:38 -'even Jesus of Nazareth, how God anointed him with the Holy Spirit and with power, who went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him.'

10) As a Son of Man - He took the body of sin and came into the world
ln spite of His divine nature, Jesus humbled himself and became just like one of us
Philipians 2:5-8 -'Have this in your mind, which was also in Christ Jesus, who, existing in the form of God, didn't consider equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, yes, the death of the cross.'

11) As God's own child - John 1:10 -'He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not.'
Jesus was sent to the world with a message from His Father
Being also a child of God through faith in Jesus, you are to go and tell the world about your Father in heaven and the salvation He offers them
If you are truly a child of God, you will definitely know the secrets of the Kingdom of your Father, and you will be confident to speak about it everywhere you go

12) As a Servant - He came serving us in humility
This was clearly demonstrated when He washed the feet of His disciples in John 13:1-5
Pride hinders people from rendering service to God and to other people (without expecting anything in return)
NOTE: Regardless of your position In life, without Christ, you are nothing! It takes humility to be a servant
Servants are generally looked down upon in the society as unimportant people. As a servant, Jesus bore all manner of humiliation

13) As a Mediator - 2nd Corinthians 5:17-18 - 'Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old things have passed away. Behold, new things have come. But all things are of God, who reconciled us to himself through Jesus Christ, and gave to us the ministry of reconciliation.'
Hebrews 7:24-25 -' But because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. Therefore, because he always lives to intercede for them, he is able to save completely those who come to God through him. We need such a high priest—one who is holy, innocent, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens. He has no need to offer sacrifices every day like high priests do, first for his own sins and then for those of the people, since he did this once for all when he sacrificed himself.'
Just like Christ, you are called to be an intercessor
Instead of gossiping or rejoicing that someone has fallen into sin, pray for such a person

14) As the Way - John 5:27; John 5:30; John 14:6 - 'Jesus told him, 'I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.'
Any one that rejects Jesus as his Lord and savior cannot make heaven

Notes by: Panshak Hagga

SERMON NOTES @ Church of Christ in Nations (COCIN) Area 1, Garki-Abuja on 5th July, 2015
Speaker: Elder John Ayuba Bassa
Topic: Midyear Check Up
Theme: Growing up in Christ
Sub-Theme: Growing in Love
Service Leader: Barr. Panshak Haggai
Text: Matthew 16:13-19

95% of the prayers of believers today are usually rendered during the last few days of every year (in anticipation of a prosperous new year). Many people make resolutions and commitments to God as they step into a new year because hopes are high, however, most of these are quickly forgotten after a few days. After enjoying God's grace, mercies, provisions, from January to date (that is, for the past six months) the Lord Jesus is now asking you:
- Who do people say I am to you?
- Who do you think I am to you?

Are you easily swayed by other people's (faulty) opinions about Jesus? NOTE that Jesus and His disciples visited the ancient town of Caesarea Philippi (Matthew 16:13). Caesarea Philippi was a city built by Philip the Great with dedicated altars to the gods of fertility.
- Alot of immoral sexual activity took place in that city
- Amorous sacrifices were offered to the god's of fertility for more offspring and increased yield of crops

According to Jewish tradition, believers were not supposed to visit that place due to the atrocities that took place there (but Jesus took His disciples there). It was therefore important for Jesus to sample different opinions about Himself
At that time, many people considered the miracles that Jesus performed as proceeding from the powers of Satan (Beelzebub) - See: Matthew 12:24

The Different Views/Opinions about Jesus:
1. That he was John the baptist
2. That He was Elias (Elijah the Prophet)
3. That he was Jeremiah; or
4. One of the Prophets

NOTE: It is not possible to use your knowledge to define or understand who God is. Knowing God is not by human education, wisdom or experience, it is by divine revelation.
Simon confessed that Jesus is the son of the Living God by divine revelation (Matthew 16:17) two Expositions on the issue of 'the Rock' in Matthew 16:18
1. Many believe that Jesus was referring to the confession of Peter, therefore, he (Peter) was regarded as the head (or the foundational rock) on which the Church of Christ was established - Peter was then regarded as the first Pope (Pontiff) and all subsequent Popes were (and are still) christened after Peter.
2. Others reasoned that Jesus used the moral, spiritual and social decadence in Caesarea Philippi to buttress the fact that God will build His Church and NOTHING and NO ONE will ever stop it, no matter how wicked or bad
- Nothing is impossible for God to accomplish
- God can use anyone and anything to advance the glory of His Kingdom (regardless of age, creed, sexual orientation and even religion!)

Exposition on the 'Gates of hades' (hell):
- It was believed that hades was a place of awaiting judgment for those who are dead; It is a a camp of demons & evil spirits
- From hades, lethal assault against the Church, believers and the gospel is masterminded by the devil himself

NOTE: Jesus overcame Satan and his demons through the sacrifice on the Cross of Calvary - See: Colossians 2:14-15)
The gates of hell cannot prevail against the victorious power of Jesus!
- the more they kill and spoil, the more the Kingdom of God is being propagated
- many people are turning to Christ in spite of great opposition and persecution all over the world

As a Christian, you have the power to either open or close the gates of Hades, but first, Christ must have been established in you - You must not be under the control of Satan! Since the beginning of this year, have you become better in fellowship? in giving? in holiness? in serving God? - Or have you become worse?
You need to take detailed inventory of your life, to determine whether you are controlled by Jesus or by Satan. You must dedicate quality time to know and serve God more in the remaining part of the year. You must take positive steps to break the chains that hinder you from entering the Kingdom of God - at Area 1 Garki, Abuja

Notes by: Panshak Hagga

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