The Acts of the Spirit

The Book of Acts is written as a theological history of what Jesus is continuing to do and teach through the Holy Spirit in the Church to work out the kingdom of God in this world. Acts is concerned not just with geographical expansion but with the varied demands of cross-cultural communication of the gospel. 

Acts is showing what it means (and doesn’t mean) to say that the crucified and risen Jesus is now installed as the world’s rightful Lord. It doesn’t mean a political and military takeover; in fact, Jesus’s followers routinely suffer persecution and death. It does mean that Jesus’s sovereignty is challenging the world’s rulers and authorities; not with force, but with a mixture of love and clear thinking and speaking. 

Acts is also showing how a new power, the breath of God’s spirit, is unleashed through Jesus’s followers to transform human lives and communities; creating the Jesus-believers as a world-wide family across traditional boundaries and renewing individual lives. 

Sermons in this series

The Challenge
May 19, 2024Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

Paul shares the good news of Jesus – and is almost killed for it. Instead of backing off or turning away, he heads back to the places where he faced opposition to encourage new believers to keep following Jesus in spite of opposition. Join us this Sunday as we look at “The Challenge” from Acts 14:19-28.

Watch Sermon
The Gods
April 12, 2024Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

In a thoroughly pagan city with no Jewish influence, we get to watch as Paul and Barnabas work a miracle. And just like previous miracles, this one, too, engenders a faith response in the people who see it. Except this time, their faith is in the wrong gods! Join us for “The Gods” from Acts 14:8-23 to see how the gospel is uniquely preached in this pagan environment.

Watch Sermon
The Division
May 5, 2024Pastor:Tom Waltz

Sermon Notes

Sunday we welcome another guest speaker to the pulpit; this time, one of our own elders: Tom Waltz! Tom will explore Acts 14:1-7 with us. And though this seems like just another every-day scene in Barnabas and Paul’s work in the Greco-Roman world, we’ll watch as their ministry and message split the town in two. Join for “The Division” as we discover how the gospel confronts us still today!

Watch Sermon
The Turn
April 28, 2024Pastor:John North

Sermon Notes

We’re excited to welcome John North, the Australia National Director for Ambassadors for Christ International, to share from Acts 13:44-52, “The Turn.” Though Paul and Barnabas make it their mission to preach the gospel first to Jews in the synagogues, wherever they go, in Pisidian Antioch they experience extreme opposite responses to their message. Some Jews and devout Gentiles believe that Jesus is the Messiah—others band together to drive them from the city. Was this part of God’s plan? Join us as we watch the gospel turn to the Gentiles!

Watch Sermon
The Message
April 21, 2024Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

The gospel expands to Asia Minor as Paul gets to share the good news of Jesus in a synagogue worship service. Join us for “The Message” from Acts 13:13-43 as we also get to hear about the God who works in his own time and unexpected ways to fulfill all his promises and good purposes.

Watch Sermon
The Prophet
April 14, 2024Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

It’s begun! The first missionary journey of the first formal, official missionaries starts on the island of Cyprus. Barnabas and Saul travel the island, preaching the good news of Jesus, before ending up on the west coast in the capital city of Paphos, where the city’s governor is interested in hearing more. But there’s a magician, an astrologer, a Jewish false prophet standing in the way… Join us or “The Prophet” from Acts 13:4-12 as we watch the gospel conflict with the powers of the age!

Watch Sermon
The Commissioning
April 7, 2024Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

We’re back in Acts! After taking off for Lent, we’re picking the story back up where we left off. The church has faced trials from without and conflicts from within, followers of Jesus have been scattered across the known world, and the center of missionary activity in the Church has shifted from Jerusalem to Antioch. And it’s in Antioch that the Holy Spirit shows up, calling out two of the best teachers to start traveling to spread the gospel and plant churches among non-Jewish people. Join us for “The Commissioning” from Acts 12:25-13:3, as the gospel turns to the Gentiles!

 

Watch Sermon
The Blasphemy
February 11, 2024Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

At first glance, this story seems unnecessary. Herod Agrippa has only just come on the scene, and already Luke narrates his demise? But there are fascinating contrasts between this story and the previous one—most interestingly, contrasting how the Church responds to Herod’s oppression and how the people of Tyre and Sidon respond. Ultimately, Herod’s power is nothing compared to God’s, and the Church continues to flourish in spite of opposition. So join us as we study “The Blasphemy” from Acts 12:20-25!

Watch Sermon
The Deliverance
February 4, 2024Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

After following the action to Antioch, this week we’re back in Jerusalem. Public sentiment has turned against the Jesus Movement, and local authorities aren’t above capitalizing on public opinion to bolster their own political ambitions. With one apostle killed and another imprisoned, is the church in Jerusalem about to be destroyed? What will God do next to rescue his people? Find out as we explore “The Deliverance” in Acts 12:1-19!

Watch Sermon
The Church
January 28, 2024Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

The good news of Messiah Jesus has spread beyond Jewish believers to the Gentiles, and now to the birth of a cross-cultural, multi-ethnic church in Antioch. That congregation becomes the center of gospel expansion to the Roman world. Why? What makes them so unique and important that we can learn from? Join us as we look at “The Church” from Acts 11:19-30.

 

Watch Sermon
The Report
January 21, 2024Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

We hear again that God welcomes Gentiles into the community of his people. Why does this offend the Jewish believers? What convinces them that God has done something they need to accept and adjust to? And what does that have to do with us? Join us this Sunday as we look at “The Report” from Acts 11:1-18.

Watch Sermon
The Gentiles
January 14, 2024Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

When last we looked at the adventures of the early church, we were with Peter in Caesarea, on the coast, after he experienced a revelatory vision from God teaching him that no one is outside the reach of God’s grace. Immediately after, messengers from a Roman soldier named Cornelius showed up, saying Cornelius too had received a vision with instructions to get Peter! How does the story end? Find out as the church expands to “The Gentiles” in Acts 10:34-48!

Watch Sermon
The Visions
November 26, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

It’s finally happening, and yet it still comes as a shock. From this end of the story, we know it was inevitable that the good news of the kingdom would extend beyond the Jewish people. But Peter didn’t see it coming. Join us for “The Visions” from Acts 10:1-33, as we see God preparing two very different men to discover that Jesus makes them brothers.

 

Watch Sermon
The Healings
November 19, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

Having finished with the story of Saul (at least to this point), Luke shifts his focus back to Peter. We find Peter on a pastoral tour of little churches in little towns north of Jerusalem, preaching and ministering the good news of the kingdom of God in Messiah Jesus. Healing—and even a resurrection!—follow, as the risen and exalted Jesus is at work bringing new life to his people. And that’s not all, as Peter will soon find himself deep in a new controversy in the near future when a prominent Gentile comes to faith in Jesus. Is this where the church is going? Join us for “The Healings” as we see Peter marching toward a watershed moment in the history of the early church!

 

Watch Sermon
The Reunion
November 12, 2012Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

Saul returns to Jerusalem for the most difficult reunion ever – he wants to join the group he was trying to kill, but that group wants nothing to do with him, and the group he used to be part of wants to kill him. How is God going to work in all that mess and what will come from it? Join us as we look at “The Reunion” from Acts 9:26-31.

Watch Sermon
The Escape
November 5, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

Though viewed with suspicion, Saul immediately begins explaining how everything he had hoped and dreamed for the people of Israel had been fulfilled in Jesus, the Messiah. And in what will become a pattern in his ministry, he almost immediately starts to cause trouble. Join us for “The Escape” from Acts 9:19-25, as we dig into the less-than-auspicious beginnings of this great missionary’s ministry!

Watch Sermon
The Conversion
October 29, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

Is this the most dramatic conversion in the entire New Testament? Maybe…it’s certainly the conversion with the most dramatic impact. But that was part of the plan from the beginning, as God had a plan for Saul that would send him to the ends of the earth, living and witnessing to the life of Christ. Join us for the beginning of it all with “The Conversion” from Acts 9:10-19!

Watch Sermon
The Persecutor
October 22, 2023Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

Saul, the great persecutor of Jesus’ followers, is literally knocked to the ground and blinded — in order to help him see his blindness and heal his heart. What does Saul’s story say to us about our need for Jesus and how God works through “severe mercy” in our lives? Join us as we look at “The Persecutor” from Acts 9:1-9.

Watch Sermon
The Foreigner
October 2015Pastor:Bob Blahnik

Sermon Notes

So far in our study of Acts, we’ve seen the gospel shared with large groups but now, Luke shares the accounts of conversion of three individuals: a foreigner from Ethiopia, Saul, and Cornelius. These passages remind us of the need for us to look for ways to share our faith in Christ with our families, our friends, and the world around us. We are all called to “go and make disciples,” but sharing our faith with others is becoming harder to do in the world we live in. In this sermon, we will be reminded of the ABCs of life-to-life evangelism and be encouraged to go where the Spirit leads us to share the good news of Christ.

 

Watch Sermon
The Power
October 8, 2023Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

Luke has shown us God’s amazing power at work to heal, save, deliver, and change lives. Wouldn’t it be great if we could direct God’s miraculous power ourselves? But is God’s power the kind of thing we can control and manage? Join us as we look at “The Power” from Acts 8:9-25.

Watch Sermon
The Scattering
October 1, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

With the killing of Stephen and the persecution that follows, the Jesus Movement faces its biggest challenge yet. Almost all the believers in Jerusalem are forced to flee. Will this be the end of the church? Or a whole new beginning? Join us as we study “The Scattering” of the early church, and how God uses opposition to expand the kingdom!

Watch Sermon
The Stoning
September 24, 2023Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

Even as Stephen is being killed for being a faithful witness of Jesus, he prays for the people killing him. What enables Stephen to respond in such a Christ-like way? What do we learn from him that helps us when we’re tempted to strike back or get even? Join us as we look at “The Stoning” in Acts 7:54-8:1a.

Watch Sermon
The Speech
September 17, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

He’s been accused of rejecting the Law, disparaging the Temple, and blaspheming Moses—and God. Now is his chance to defend himself, but Stephen doesn’t. Instead, he goes on offense, telling the story of Israel to show how those in charge keep missing God’s work in the world. What does that have to do with us? Join us for “The Speech” from Acts 7:1-53 and find out!

Watch Sermon
The Accusation
September 10, 2023Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

Stephen, one of the seven chosen to meet needs in the church, faithfully serves, heals, and shares the good news of Jesus with others. Instead of blessings and recognition, Stephen’s “reward” is hostility, arrest, and slander. What does Stephen’s experience teach us about what it means to follow Jesus? Join us as we look at “The Accusation” from Acts 6:8-15.

Watch Sermon
The Tables
September 3, 2023Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

Jesus’ new community has faced threats from persecution and corruption. Now they’re challenged by the potential for division through distraction and disunity. What does their response say to us about the new kind of community God shapes by his Spirit? Join us as we look at “The Tables” from Acts 6:1-7.

Watch Sermon
The Rescue
August 27th, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

From conflict inside the church Luke takes us to conflict outside the church, in the form of an arrest, trial, and beating of the church’s leaders by the religious authorities. Desperate to stop the Jesus-movement, they inadvertently embolden the apostles, who are thrilled that they get to suffer for the name of Jesus. What about us? Are we willing to suffer for Jesus? Join us for “The Rescue” from Acts 5:12-14, and we’ll ask ourselves what we’re willing to sacrifice for the name of Jesus.

 

Watch Sermon
The Field
August 20, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

As the early church begins to grow, some leaders are appointed because of their character and qualifications, while others try to buy their way in to leadership. But this new Jesus-movement has no room for manipulation and false piety. In this sermon, we’ll dig into Acts 4:32-5:11, the famous story of “The Field,” and consider what this story says about our church, today.

Watch Sermon
The Prayer
August 13, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

After being explicitly told not to preach about new life in the name of Jesus, the early followers of Jesus gather to pray—not to pray for persecution to stop, but to pray that they would be bold to proclaim Jesus in the face of opposition. Do we want that same boldness? Join us for “The Prayer” from Acts 4:23-31 as we learn what this prayer has to teach us today!

Watch Sermon
The Council
July 30, 2023Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

A good deed done in Jesus’ name leads to a message about Jesus being the promised Savior. Why does all this seem threatening to the authorities? What happens when the power and the message of the gospel clash with unbelief? And what does that have to do with us? Join us as we look at “The Council” from Acts 4:1-22.

Watch Sermon
The Call
July 23, 2023Pastor:Tom Macy

Sermon Notes

What are the essentials of what came to be called Christianity? Following the healing of a beggar at the temple gate who was “lame form birth,” Peter addressed the gathering crowd with not only Gospel essentials, but by building a case that who Jesus is and what Jesus did is the fulfillment of the entire Jewish Scriptures. Illustrating from Abraham, Moses, Samuel, and “all the prophets” Peter declared that God’s plan of blessing for Israel and the future hope for “all the families of the earth” is centered on Jesus through his death and resurrection. Read all of Acts 3 in preparation for this message from Acts 3:11-26, The Call.

Watch Sermon
The Beggar
June 16, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

Will wonders never cease? It seems that way, as we watch the Peter who preached in the power of the Spirit now heal in the name of the Son. The good news that the Kingdom of God has come in Jesus the Messiah is authenticated in a miraculous healing, a healing that not only restores physical health, but spiritual health as well. Join us for “The Beggar” from Acts 3:1-10!

Watch Sermon
The Community
July 9, 2023Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

Peter preaches the good news of Jesus’ resurrection and forgiveness, and 3,000 people come to faith – now what? What do these people do together? What defines the faith community they create? And what does that mean for how we “do” church? Join us as we look at “The Community” from Acts 2:42-47.

Watch Sermon
The Response
June 2, 2023Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

Have you ever had a sudden revelation, a change of perspective that shifted everything you thought you knew? The worshipers in Jerusalem realize they’ve gotten everything about Jesus wrong – now what? What difference does it make when we see Jesus for who he really is? Join us for “The Response” from Acts 2:36-41.

Watch Sermon
The Sermon
June 25, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

With a rushing wind and tongues of fire proving that God now dwells with his people, that heaven meets earth in the brand-new church, Peter stands up to address the world-wide crowd of Jews attracted by the noise. This is how the kingdom of God begins, with the first sermon of the first church. Join us for “The Sermon” from Acts 2:14-36!

Watch Sermon
The Power
June 18, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

And now the action begins! The apostles, with their number newly refilled, are anxious to start the mission of the kingdom of God. But they can’t do this on their own. As Jesus promised, they need power—and now the power comes, and the results are astonishing. Join us for “The Tongues” from Acts 2:1-13!

Watch Sermon
The Twelve
June 11, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

What a story! But why is it in our Bibles? Just for the shock value of what happened to Judas? Or is there more to the story? Join us for “The Twelve” from Acts 1:12-26, as we explore the connection this story has with Israel in the past and the kingdom of God in the future!

Watch Sermon
The Kingdom
June 4, 2023Pastor:Jeff Schultz

Sermon Notes

If Acts is the continuation of Jesus’ work, that means his earthly ministry was not just a prelude to the cross, but was the pattern for his rule – graciously healing, restoring, and saving as a preview of Jesus’ ultimate victory over sin and evil. In this sermon we look at “The Kingdom” from Acts 1:6-11.

Watch Sermon
The Introduction
May 28, 2023Pastor:Joey Woestman

Sermon Notes

This series is our study of the origin story of the church—the book of Acts! In this series we are exploring how the gospel spreads throughout the ancient world, and how it continues to spread around our world today. The whole time, we’ll keep asking ourselves this one question: who and where is the gospel sending me today?

Watch Sermon