2002 Sermons

State of the Congregation Part 101/06/02

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State of the Congregation Part 201/13/02

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State of the Congregation Part 301/20/02

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State of the Congregation Part 401/27/02

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Born To Be Wild02/03/02

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Remembering Paradise02/10/02

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The Gazelle God02/17/02

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Knowing and Relying on God's Love02/24/02

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Giving is the LIfe of Love03/03/02

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The Kingdom of God03/10/02

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Getting Out of the Funk03/17/02

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Whose Line is it Anyway?03/24/02

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The Ressurection Proves it: Jesus Was Not a Great Man (Easter)03/31/02

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Christ in You: The Hope of Glory04/07/02

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It's All About Love04/14/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Greg has been preaching on passion for the past month as a way of preparing us for the release of this passion of faith through spiritual disciplines and obedience to God in our lives. Today we were reminded that love is the power that validates any act of obedience or discipline that a Christian does. If we don’t have love, nothing else we do can have the impact God wants it to have.

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Knocking Over the Bear04/21/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • In today’s sermon, Greg began with a review of last week’s message about the goal of creation, a biblical definition of love, and the three movements that God’s love makes.

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The Only Thing that Matters04/28/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Building on the previous two sermons, Greg has offered a third challenge to us to live in the love that God extends to us and wants to spread through us. God has done everything necessary to make our “abiding in Christ” possible.

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Blocking Off the Source05/05/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Today’s sermon addressed the question, “What went wrong?” by taking us back to Genesis 3.

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Revolutionary Community05/12/02

  • Speaker – Efrem Smith
     
  • We were blessed to have Efrem Smith preach today on the topic of the Church as a “Revolutionary Community: Going from a crowd to a community.” The text for this message was Acts 2:41-47.

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Only Thing I Need05/19/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Greg has been focusing our attention on the centrality of love as the heartbeat of all reality. Today’s sermon will continue to address the question, “What went wrong?”

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Knowing Your Name05/26/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • The names of people and places in the Bible are more meaningful than we might expect. The names are given and sometimes changed for important reasons, and the reasons stick with the person or place because of the clarity of the name to the people who use it.

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Hiding and Performance06/02/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Love is to be the heartbeat of the Christian life. We have also seen that we cannot both love and judge at the same time. We either eat of the tree of life, which is made available to us again in Jesus Christ, or we continue to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. One is a life of freedom, transparency, openness, joy and truth. The other is a life of bondage and emptiness. This second way of trying to get life will drive us to pretend to be something that we are not. We are called to a life of love, but most of us seem to live in a pattern of performance and hiding.

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Radical Reconcilers06/09/02

  • Speaker – Efrem Smith
     
  • This morning Efrem Smith delivered a powerful and honest message. Building upon his last sermon at Woodland Hills (5/12/02), Efrem walked through 2 Corinthians 5:13-20 and focused on the responsibilities and privileges of those in the Christian community concerning reconciliation.

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Will You Plead Your Case?06/16/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Greg has been showing us how our desire to judge others and ourselves actually prevents God’s love from flowing in us and through us toward others. The primary text has been Gen. 3 with the story of Adam and Eve and the two trees.

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Dressed for War - Dressed for Victory06/23/02

  • Speaker – Peggy Riley
     
  • This morning we were blessed to have Peggy Riley deliver a sermon. Outfitted in a camouflage military coat, Peggy began this commissioning message by recognizing the reality of being a wounded soldier of the Lord. Denying one’s wounds does not solve any problems but only delays the healing.

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It's Time to Roar06/30/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Last week Pastor Peggy reminded us that we are in a spiritual war and that we must be dressed appropriately. Pastor Peggy then commissioned us to put on the full armor of God and live victoriously! This means that we must be armor bearers for one another because some in the battle will be wounded and in need of protection. This week Greg picked up on the military theme and called us to be aware of the schemes of the enemy (2 Cor. 2:10-11 esp. vs. 11). As Greg pointed out, during a time of spiritual attack, “every weak link will be tested.”

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Wisdom for Life's Journey07/07/02

  • Speaker – David Clark
     
  • Dr. David Clark of Bethel Seminary generously filled the pulpit for Greg this week on short notice. We were blessed to have such a powerful message delivered in such a timely manner! Dr. Clark encouraged us to seek “Wisdom for Life’s Journey.” Wisdom starts with the fear of the Lord. This fear is not one of terror but rather one of awe, deep reverence and recognition of the glory and holiness of God. This fear reminds us that God has plans and ways that are not our own and that this can offer us hope in situations that seem hopeless to us otherwise. God is the God of possibilities and infinite resources! Remembering this can give us peace in the midst of circumstances that seem insurmountable.

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Winning When Losing is Certain07/14/02

  • Speaker – Richard Coleman
     
  • Serving as an instrument of God, Richard Coleman delivered a powerful message to the body of believers at Woodland Hills Church this morning. Richard began by noting that a day of trouble has come upon us. The effects of moral, social, and economic evil in this country cannot be denied. The reality of this evil is being recognized by many, Christians and non-Christians alike, and certainly comes as no surprise to God. As these challenges of the devil come, people are going to become more and more desperate for God.

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The Great Commission and Discipleship07/21/02

  • Speaker – Erwin McManus
     
  • There is much confusion in the church today concerning what the word “disciple” signifies. In many cases the church has separated the term from its original, Christ-given meaning. Erwin McManus, of the Mosaic church in East Los Angeles, began his message today by highlighting this incorrect definition of discipleship. A disciple is not simply a person who wants to learn more about God, form new relationships at church, and be mentored by an elder; the life of a disciple entails so much more. Being a disciple is a radical way of life in God. One does not become a disciple by attending church or reading books on Christian living. Instead, Erwin spoke of two definable characteristics, unobtainable through earthly channels, that are always true of someone who follows Jesus Christ.

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So Close07/28/02

  • Speaker – Efrem Smith
     
  • So often we come inches away from fulfilling our dreams but never quite reach them. This morning Efrem delivered a powerful message to us at Woodland Hills entitled “So Close.”

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The Prostitute and the Pharisee08/04/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Greg picked up where he left off about a month ago with the theme of love, which he has been contrasting to “the knowledge of good and evil.” He used the story of the woman who washed Jesus’ feet in the Pharisee’s house (read Luke 7:31-50) as an illustration of the difference between relating to others in love vs. relating to others through our own knowledge of good and evil.

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What Do You See?08/11/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Greg started this week’s sermon with a reminder of how central love is to the Christian faith. The Church is to display God’s love to the world. But we fail to do this primarily because we forget that we are unable to both love and judge our neighbor.

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Certified Ambition08/18/02

  • Speaker – Kevin Johnson
     
  • We were blessed to have Kevin Johnson, our Community Pastor, speak to us today about ambition. The message centered on Paul’s self-assessment in Phil. 3:3-10. “Ambition” is like “power” in that it can be a good thing when the motive behind it is good, but it can be devastating if the motive behind it is self-serving or ungodly.

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A Report from the Icthus Revival08/25/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • A Report from the Icthus Revival

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Judgment and Discernment09/01/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Greg has been teaching us about love and judgment since April 14. This week we wrap up with a discussion on the difference between judgment and discernment.

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Where Was God on September 11?09/08/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • This sermon reflected on the events of 9/11 nearly one year ago. To start us off Greg had us watch clips from the PBS documentary “Faith and Doubt at Ground Zero.” The clips contained portrayals of people asking tough questions about God in the aftermath of the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center. Some of the questions included: Where was God during these events? If God is the Creator, then why didn’t he stop these events? Is it because God is barbaric and approves if not causes events like this? Isn’t America “blessed”? What happened? One man used to think that God was “majestic” and “powerful,” but now he has concluded that the “majestic God” is dead. Greg reflected on the fact that many questions like this are asked of God in the Bible as well, and so there is no reason to think that God is offended by the asking. But there are biblical ways to respond to these questions.

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Love is Not a Feeling09/15/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Greg focused specifically on what love is in itself and how we become lovers in the biblical sense. He started out by turning to the classic biblical text on love: 1 Cor. 13. He reminded us that verses 1-3 clearly show the “all or nothing” character of love. One can have amazing experiences of God, faith to move mountains, and be a sacrificial disciple, but if you don’t have love, it means nothing to God.

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Love is Patient09/22/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • This message continues with the theme of discovering what love looks like by turning to I Cor. 13, where we saw that this chapter is found within a discussion of the spiritual gifts and how the church of Corinth was using—and abusing—those gifts. Paul warns that the presence of the gifts (tongues, prophecy, knowledge, wisdom, faith, radical obedience, generosity, etc.) does not guarantee the presence of love. This is a stunning revelation! Paul is teaching that one can have wonderful experiences of faith and spiritual intensity and still lack true spiritual life—that is—still lack love.

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What About Me?09/29/02

  • Speaker – Efrem Smith
     
  • We were blessed to have Efrem Smith return to the pulpit and preach on Matt. 15:22-28. Do you ever get the sense that some people seem to catch all the breaks, but you just don’t?

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Love is Kind10/06/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • This message continues with the theme of discovering what love looks like by turning to I Cor. 13, where we looked at what it means that love is “kind.” Greg used Eugene Peterson’s paraphrase of the Bible entitled “The Message” to help us get at the idea of kindness. Peterson describes how love is kind in this way: “Love cares more for others than itself.”

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Love Does Not Envy10/20/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Greg started this sermon with a review of the past few months. The “big picture” of God’s goal in creating is love. God wants loving creatures who embrace and reflect love back to God and to others around them. Sin interrupts the flow of this love to us.

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Love Does Not Boast and is Not Arrogant10/27/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Greg started this sermon with a review of the past few months. The “big picture” of God’s goal for Creation is love. God wants loving creatures that embrace and reflect love back to God and to others around them. Sin interrupts the flow of this love to us. This leaves a void in our lives that is supposed to be filled with love. This, in turn, motivates us to find other things to “feed on” besides God’s love. But the world has limited resources, and we are created with an infinite need for God’s love in us.

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Love is Not Rude11/03/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • The “big picture” of God’s goal for creation is that we will learn to live in the center of His love. This is not a hypothesis but a lived experience where love comes to us by Jesus Christ. This transforms us and flows from us to others, with God at the center.

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Love Does Not Insist on it's Own Way11/10/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Greg continued his sermon series through I Corinthians 13 by focusing on verse 5: “love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful.” As a general principle, love does not seek to control others. However, controlling behavior typically characterizes human nature. Why is this?

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Focusing on the Center: Love Does Not Seek it's Own11/17/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • This week Greg focused again on I Corinthians 13:5: “Love does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful.” He started this sermon with a review of the past few months.

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Missionfield Youth11/24/02

  • Speaker – Dennis Luce
     
  • Dennis Luce, Youth Pastor at Woodland Hills, shared his passion for reaching youth with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. He shared how today’s youth culture is vastly different from earlier generations.

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Restoring the Image of God12/01/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Greg talked this morning about the overwhelming significance of humanity being made in the image of God. If we will understand and live in the knowledge of this reality, we will experience profound healing.

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Living by Faith12/08/02

  • Speaker – Efrem Smith
     
  • Efrem Smith preached this morning from Hebrews 11 about living by faith. The Christmas season can leave many people feeling shaken and weak. Many people wonder, “What can I trust in?” Efrem preached that faith in Christ is what people need, especially during this season. In particular, he preached about ten characteristics of living by faith that we learn from this chapter.

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Love Bears All Things12/15/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Is the Christmas season as pleasant as the advertisers portray it? Along with the wonder and joy of the Season, many people feel, at times, melancholy, bitter, and depressed. Whatever the case, is it possible to celebrate Christmas with joy if we are experiencing such “unseasonal” emotions?

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The Light of the World12/22/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Greg spoke this morning about the power of Jesus Christ as the Light of the World. In the Bible light and darkness are contrasted. Light describes the goodness and presence of God, while darkness describes the absence of God’s presence, or more specifically, describes a context of rebellion against God.

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Love Never Ends12/29/02

  • Speaker – Greg Boyd
     
  • Greg finished the sermon series on love this weekend by focusing on I Corinthians 13:8-13. As Greg has been saying throughout this series, love is the center of the Christian experience. Everything in Christianity hinges upon Christ’s demonstration of love on the Cross for us and our manifesting that love to others.

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