Building a Great Church – Great Conversions!

Preached by Chris Adams, May 4, 2008

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This city is as open as our mouths and hearts are!

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We all want to see great conversions happen in our midst, but what can we learn from Philip’s heart as he listened and obeyed the Spirit of God, reaching out where ever the Spirit sent him?! Just think what would have happened if he had allowed himself to get discouraged, dare we say cynical, when Simon hit his spiritual bumps as a new disciple and needed to be rebuked by Peter . . . he never would have been ready to reach out to the Ethiopian eunuch on the Gaza road!

Let’s make the most of every opportunity to share the precious gift of God’s grace, and then watch God do some great converting here in Central New York.
“Great Conversions” preached by Chris Adams
Sunday, May 4, 2008

Psalm 127:1
• God must be the builder of this church, if we want this church to be GREAT!

The points for today’s sermon are simply this:
“Anyone, anytime, anywhere can become a disciple of Jesus Christ.”

Acts 8:9-10
• Everyone is following someone, even the rebellious people trying to be unique.
Question: Are you attracting attention from people in the world in a good way?
• Having a great conversion means not being intimidated by people who boast that they are great.

Acts 8:11-13
• Don’t be in chains.
• The gospel of Jesus will convert great people.
Question: How do you feel about yourself today?
Question: Do you think that God wants you to walk around thinking that you are a nobody?
• Don’t be insecure.
Question: What people would intimidate me?
• You need to be humble but you also have to have the confidence.
• Some people think that Simon did not truly get converted.
• Simon became a disciple of Jesus Christ according to the Bible.
(Mark 16:16 Anyone who believes and is baptized will be saved.)
• When you live with someone, you see how he is being like Jesus or not being like Jesus.
Question: Who are you going to follow everyday?
Question: Do you feel like you have arrived?

Jeremiah 17:9
• Your heart is deceitful above all things.

Matthew 28:18-20
Question: Who are you following all over the place, like Simon followed Philip?

Acts 8:14-23
• You have this battle with the sinful nature.
• Your quiet time is an interaction with the Holy Spirit.
• If there is sin that you are deceitful about, then the issue is the heart.
• The leadership has to be open with each other.
• You have to help the church to be where it needs to be.
• There is a difference between dealing with your sin and not dealing with your sin.

1 John 1:5-10
• Confession of sin is helping you to be a part of the ministry.
• People are going to fall away.
• God tests your heart.
• You got to let God disciple your heart.
Question: What will Satan use against you to get you to fall away?
Question: Do you know what your sinful nature is?
• The opposite of confidence is self-reliance or pride.
• You have to be humble.
• It is up to you to get discipled. (Isaiah 7:9)
Question: Where is your faith to get discipled?
• Bring people to your life.

Acts 8:24-25
• Great conversions inspire great boldness.
Question: Why does the church right now need to have great conversions?
• You need to stand firm in your faith.
• Be faithful to have great conversions.

Acts 8:26-39
Question: Did he know who he was going to meet?
• He made the most of every opportunity.
• God sets the time and places. (Acts 17:26)
Question: What would have made Philip say no to the angel?
• When you are inward focused, you miss opportunities.
• Discipleship and cynicism do not go together.
Question: Can you put to death fear?
• There is a desire or longing to have a deep relationship with God.
• Get the hunger to baptize someone.
Question: Are you longing to baptize someone in Syracuse?
• Great conversions come with great love.
• It will take a lot of sacrifice, but it is worth it.
“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.
Question: How can you add to God’s glory?

Ephesians 1:3-14
• The phrase: “To the praise of his glory” was used 3 times in this passage. God has designed our lives to bring his glory praise (imagine that!), as we sing the message of forgiveness to the lost world.
• The only thing that could possibly add to God’s glory is more thanksgiving and praise of His Glory . . . therefore every conversion is great because it is adding to the praise of His Glory!!!!