HOPE: Christmas Eve

Covid feels a little bit like the GRINCH that stole Christmas for some of us, but we made a decision at the beginning of this ADVENT series—CHOOSE HOPE. It’s been a hard year in lots of different ways, but that is when and where and why we celebrate Emmanuel, God with us. This Christmas we remember the reason for the season: the birth of Jesus Christ, our Lord, and Savior. It’s a season to WORSHIP GOD like the wise men, SEEK GOD like the shepherds, and TRUST GOD like Mary and Joseph.
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Heaven and Earth: Ephesians 6 ‘First Love’

Dr. Mark Batterson concludes our Heaven on Earth series. You can get an A for EFFORT. You can get an A for TRUTH. Are you getting an A for LOVE? Many decades after the Ephesians receive a letter from the Apostle Paul, the Apostle John calls them back to their FIRST LOVE. How? One, REMEMBER. Two, REPENT. Three, DO WHAT YOU DID AT FIRST.
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Heaven on Earth: Ephesians 5 ‘Me To We’

There are 59 one another statements in the New Testament. Two of the most significant are found in Ephesians 5—SUBMIT to one another and SING to one another. When practiced in two-part harmony, marriage turns into a melody. Marriage is an ICON—an earthly representation of this eternal reality called the Trinity. You have to make sure the ICON doesn’t become an IDOL. That puts an impossible burden to bear on your spouse because you’re asking them to do for you what ONLY CHRIST CAN. But with Christ at the center, marriage mirrors the diversity and unity of the Trinity.
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Heaven on Earth: Ephesians 5 ‘Live Not By Lies’

Dr. Mark Batterson continues our series on the book of Ephesians. It takes moral courage to STAND AGAINST what is WRONG and STAND FOR what is RIGHT. It takes moral courage to SPEAK TRUTH TO POWER, to SPEAK THE TRUTH IN LOVE. Living not by lies is refusing to bow to cultural idols or ideologies if they don’t pass the TRUTH TEST. It’s living according to your biblical convictions even if it’s COUNTERCULTURE. It’s RISKING YOUR REPUTATION for what you know is GOOD and RIGHT and TRUE. It’s DISAGREEING FREELY yet LOVING REGARDLESS. It’s a conscience taken captive by the Word of God and Spirit of God.
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Heaven on Earth: Ephesians 4 ‘The Creative Minority’

Dr. Mark Batterson continues our series on the book of Ephesians. The disintegration of civilization is caused by the deterioration of what British historian Arnold Toynbee called the CREATIVE MINORITY. The church is the creative minority, as well as a moral minority. It must swim upstream and go against the grain. Then—and only then—can it catalyze revivals, reformations, and renaissances. The key to this creative minority? Unity in diversity. That is what results in spiritual maturity. That is what nets this BELOVED COMMUNITY we call the church. In the words of NCCer David Grizzle, “Unity among DISSIMILAR people serves the purpose of being INDISPUTABLE PROOF that God is in the house!” Let’s not settle for the façade of UNIFORMITY. Let’s strive for biblical unity!
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Heaven on Earth: Ephesians 3 & 4 ‘Walk The Wire’

Dr. Mark Batterson continues our series on the book of Ephesians. Whether it’s racial tension or political polarization, cancel culture, or social media shaming, navigating this cultural moment feels like a high wire act. How do we stay balanced? How do we stay positive? How do we shift the atmosphere? The Apostle Paul shares four cardinal virtues that guide our cultural engagement—humility, gentleness, patience, and tolerance. When we practice those principles, heaven invades earth. Instead of politicizing, we theologize the world around us.
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Heaven on Earth: Ephesians 1 ‘Stamped’

Dr. Mark Batterson continues our series on the book of Ephesians. You are not the mistakes you’ve made. You are not the labels people have put on you. You are who God says you are—nothing less, nothing else. You are BLESSED with every spiritual blessing in Christ. You are CHOSEN before the beginning of time. You are BLAMELESS in the eyes of God. You are ADOPTED by the Heavenly Father. You are REDEEMED by the blood of Christ. You are SEALED by the Holy Spirit, and you are STAMPED with the image of God.
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Heaven on Earth: Ephesians 1 – ‘An Extra Measure of Grace’

Dr. Mark Batterson kicks off our new series on the book of Ephesians! Our identity, our authority is anchored in a dimension of reality called heaven. It is the domain of God’s dominion—perfect harmony, true identity, full authority. Every blessing is ours in the heavenly realm (Ephesians 1:3). Heaven is invading earth right here, right now. How? With a supernatural demonstration of God’s love and power and wisdom. As citizens of heaven, we represent the heavenly realm. The goal? On earth, as it is in heaven.
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Unshaken: Daniel 12 ‘The Last Dance’

Dr. Mark Batterson concludes our series on the book of Daniel. Living UNSHAKEN is refusing to compromise your convictions, even if it costs you a fiery furnace or lands you in a lion’s den. It’s speaking truth to power. It’s showing grace in a cancel culture. It’s confronting the brutal facts with unwavering faith. Why? God’s got this. God’s got you. Don’t lose faith in the end of the story! Administrations come and go. Nations and rise and fall. The kingdom of God is forever. We find our identity, we pledge our loyalty, to the King and His Kingdom. And He’s coming again!
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Unshaken: Daniel 9 ‘Agents of the Apocalypse’

Dr. Mark Batterson continues our series on the book of Daniel at National Community Church. With all that is happening in our 2020 world, a conversation about eschatology seems apropos! What does the Bible say about the end times? Are there any hints that can help us navigate the crisis we find ourselves in? What can I do to get ready for what’s next? Those are some of the questions we’ll explore this week, and a few answers may surprise you! The good news? God’s got this. Don’t lose faith in the end of the story!
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