Christianese - God Helps Those Who Help Themselves
on April 26th, 2022
Robert Tyson - Then the focus shifted to Christians. What are we doing as Christians to help ourselves and others? We don't like letting others into our inner circle. We keep others at arm's length; we get busy doing work, life, church, meetings, working out and the busyness of life and unlimited other things keep us from engaging in life with other Christians. I firmly believe that Covid was sent to disrupt the Church and disrupt the gathering of God's people. Why you ask? Because, to quote the magician on Frosty the Snowman, I have become "Busy, Busy, Busy." I have become so busy doing other things that I have neglected the gathering of God's people. I have lost focus on the main goal of Christians and the focus of Heritage Church.  Read More
Christinaese - WK 1
on April 19th, 2022
David Magness - Don’t we still see a version of this today? The world tells us the story of Christ doesn’t make sense; the Bible is illogical or contradicts itself. This shouldn’t come as a surprise to us because those without the Spirit cannot discern the things of God (1 Cor. 2:12-16). However, as ambassadors of Christ (2 Cor 5:20) we have the calling to simply live out our identity in Christ. It is God making His appeal through us to a world in need, and He is the one causing the growth (1 Cor. 3:6-7). We get the privilege to point people to Him!  Read More
Titus - Chapter 3
on April 12th, 2022
Jeff Wood - At Heritage, we go to great lengths to talk about our identity being in Christ. As such, we are to rest in HIS completed work. As Andrew perfectly put it, the Gospel of the Grace of God does not produce laziness. By rightly dividing and studying the word of truth, we continuously further our understanding of what Christ did for us and who we are in Him. By the riches of God's love and grace given to us, every interaction, action, and thought is changed forever. Why? Because it's not I, but Christ. Everything should be through the overflow of God's endless love working in and through my life. As such, we are the ministers and ambassadors for the Gospel of Grace in the lives of everyone we encounter. Grace frees us from the requirements of the law so that we can become servants of righteousness (Rom 6:18).  Read More
Titus - Chapter 2
on April 5th, 2022
Matt Graves - The instruction to deny oneself is a popular teaching among a lot of evangelical communities. And it sounds super spiritual and humble. The problem is, it isn’t biblical. Now, I am well aware of the passages in Matthew, Mark & Luke where Jesus himself says, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.” But is it not curious to you that if denying ourselves was such a vital component of our walk as believers, every one of the apostles who contributed to the New Testament writings on THIS SIDE OF THE CROSS would have repeated that command over and over?  Read More
Titus - Chapter 1
on March 30th, 2022
Will Huddleston - Colossians 2:6-7 tell us, "As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him: Rooted and built up in him, and established in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving." Pastor began a series this past Sunday entitled Titus, and this passage in Colossians gives us a great foundation for what Paul is writing to Titus and about why Titus was the individual chosen for ministry on the island of Crete. Crete was a mixing pot of people, cultures, lifestyles, and beliefs as it is situated in the center of the Mediterranean Sea and was a mid-way point for many travelers in the ancient world. As a result, even in this small area, there was a vast array of thoughts, beliefs, and seeming truths that were held...from carefree to moralizers. For any of us that grew up in church, this could sound somewhat familiar. In Acts 15, we read of a group of Pharisees who had placed their faith in Christ, continuing to put the shackles of law on those whom would believe in Jesus. A specific issue they were dealing with was the act of circumcision. According to their chosen belief, unless you are circumcised, you cannot be saved. Paul took up issue with this and disputed the matter sharply. After being sent to Jerusalem to further discuss the matter with other church leaders, some of the believers from the party of Pharisees stood up and said, "The Gentiles must be circumcised and required to keep the law of Moses." Peter, who was there with Paul and Barnabas, stands up and asks why they would put a yoke on the gentiles that their Jewish forefathers nor they themselves have been able to bear. Then in verse 11, he says, "But we believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, in the same way as they also are." When we move back into the book of Titus, Chapter 1, we see Paul reminding us of his specific calling. Paul was appointed by God specifically as the apostle to the Gentiles and entrusted with the mystery revealed to Paul at the proper time. He also held Titus as an intimate confidante in that same calling. So, Titus was the man called to appoint elders in the cities and organize the churches for ministry. Just like in Jerusalem, there were those in Crete that were mandating the works of the law in order to be saved as well as a directive to those that would believe. This is where it begins to sound very much like my experience growing up in church, and it may be the same for many of you. Going back to Colossians 2:6-7, you would be hard-pressed to find a church that wouldn't give a hardy amen to the proclamation of that verse. However, hot on the heels of that, you will hear many a big other brothers (and sisters) can't deny. Sorry, as a child of the 80s, I couldn't resist. But it's many times, scriptures would be championed for their truth yet, held in check to their true power and freedom in Christ. Often, I think it is because we are putting faith in ourselves rather than the Holy Spirit that God has placed in us through Christ...we are fearful of what we or others might do rather than trusting the Holy Spirit and His power in our lives. But too often, I'm afraid it is also a measuring stick for those that are worried about appearing righteous, believing that righteous is something it isn't. In fact, Jesus himself, speaking to the Pharisees that knew and worked diligently to keep the law, called them self-righteous and a brood of vipers. The Bible says that the law in and of itself isn't evil...however, it was only delivered to show us of our inability to be righteous, not that if we keep a good portion of it that we would appear to be and therefore so. Jesus abolished the law and took away the need for it. Righteousness for us isn't found through keeping anything but rather accepting the completed work of Jesus Christ. At that moment, we are the very righteousness of God in Christ Jesus...perfected and complete. Our minds may have to be convinced of that, as Paul tells us in Romans 12. Our living, our true and proper worship is to be transformed by the renewing of our other words, becoming to believe what is already true. Now, in today's society, many may even say that we no longer have to keep the law; however, there certainly are still rules, regulations, and more so convictions that are placed out there primarily to make sure others are acting as they "should." This is the proverbial measuring stick. And, too often, this measuring stick, due to its self-creation or misappropriation of scripture, tears down friendships, families, churches, and even cities and nations. We will likely encounter this, and the question we ask shouldn't have anything to do with these people or what is driving them to act in this manner. But rather, it should be, "what should our response be?" How do we stand strong against false teaching, manipulation, and self-righteousness? First, we grow in the grace in knowledge of Jesus Christ through the reading of His word. We must know the truth to be able to discern truth and live in the freedom that is found in Christ. Second, allow that truth to live out in our lives. At the moment of salvation, we were given the completed and ripened fruits of the spirit. They are complete in us. Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, and self-control are noted in Galatians 5:22. They are fruits from Him given completely to bear in our lives. The beautiful thing about Galatians 5:22 is the end of the verse after the fruits are listed...against such things, there is no law. God has equipped us to be different, set apart, unique, and as we allow these fruits to manifest in our lives against them, there is no law. As we respond in love, the world's ways and the trickery of legalism will be silenced. It may not happen immediately, but over time the love of Christ and it expressed and freely given to others will triumph. Do not live in the yoke of not allow others to place this yoke on allow the Holy Spirit's way in your life and know the grace, freedom, and love that lives in you through our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. This is our calling, and this is how, together, we will transform Texarkana.  Read More
Happily Ever After
on March 23rd, 2022
Randy Murray - Ephesians 5:25-33 is often plucked from the Book to use in marriage seminars and series (and countless "how to" books) often without acknowledging the preceding 122 verses. Chapters 1-3 are deeply instructive for us doctrinally establishing the facts of our "all spiritual blessings" which includes all the foundational understanding of redemption along with the unsearchable riches of Christ we receive when placed into union with him as we are baptized by the Spirit into the Body of Christ. Indeed many of these riches are enumerated in chapters 1-3 as Paul delivers the essence of what is contained in the revelation of the Mystery. Justin Magness did an excellent job in week one of discussing much of this and admonishing us (men) explaining clearly that the what is required of us as husbands is impossible without a growing understanding of who we are in Christ giving great attention to the teachings of the apostle Paul to whom was first entrusted the Mystery by Christ Himself.  Read More