How Can You Believe the Bible?

Sermon series: Hot Potatoes – 8 of 9

August 10, 2008

Pastor John Fanous

What Does the Bible Say About Itself?

1. Through it, God  __________________ to you.

“For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.” 2 Pe 1:21

2. Through it, God revives your ________________.

Ps 19:7-8: “The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul…”

3. Through it, God makes you _____________.

“… The statutes of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple…”

4. Through it, God gives you ____________.

“…The precepts of the Lord are right, giving joy to the heart…”

5. Through it, God helps you ____________.

“…The commands of the Lord are radiant, giving light to the eyes.”

How is the Bible Organized?

Genesis Ezra Joel Matthew 1 Timothy
Exodus Nehemiah Amos Mark 2 Timothy
Leviticus Esther Obadiah Luke Titus
Numbers Job Jonah John Philemon
Deuteronomy Psalm Micah Acts Hebrews
Joshua Proverbs Nahum Romans James
Judges Ecclesiastes Habakkuk 1 Corinthians 1 Peter
Ruth Song Solomon Zephaniah 2 Corinthians 2 Peter
1 Samuel Isaiah Haggai Galatians 1 John
2 Samuel Jeremiah Zechariah Ephesians 2 John
1 Kings Lamentations Malachi Philippians 3 John
2 Kings Ezekiel Colossians Jude
1 Chronicles Daniel 1Thessalonians Revelation
2 Chronicles Hosea 2Thessalonians


Didn’t the ______________ put the New Testament together?

Muratorian Canon, 170 A.D.

Doesn’t science ______________ the Bible?

Isn’t the Bible __________________?

“For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” Heb 4:12

How Does God Want Me to Use the Bible?

1. ____________ the Bible.

“When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight, for I bear your name, O Lord God Almighty.” Je 15:16

“The law from your mouth is more precious to me than thousands of pieces of silver and gold.” Ps 119:72

2. _____________ on the Bible.

“Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long.” Ps 119:97

3. ______________ the Bible.

“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like a man who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it-he will be blessed in what he does.” Jas 1:22-25

What Does It Mean to “Fear” God?

Sermon series: Hot Potatoes – 7 of 9

August 3, 2008

Pastor Fil Nesta

“Oh, that their hearts would be inclined to fear me and keep all my commands always, so that it might go well with them and their children forever!” Dt 5:29

What Do We Fear?

1. We fear the _________________________.

2. We fear the _________________________.

How is Fear Used in the Bible?

1. Yare (Old Testament)

  • The emotion and intellectual anticipation of harm.
  • A very positive feeling of awe or reverence of God.

2. Phobos/phobeo (New Testament)

  • Cause to run away, frighten or terrify.
  • Reverence, a Godly fear

Should We Fear God?

Who is God?

1. God is a righteous ____________________.

“They will sing before the Lord, for he comes, he comes to judge the earth. He will judge the world in righteousness and the peoples in his truth.” Ps 96:13

2. He is a ____________________ God.

“Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” Mt 10:28

3. He is a God that is full of ____________________.

“The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” Jn 1:14

4. He is a God that is ____________________.

“The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love.” Ps 145:8

Incorrect Fears of God

1. Being ___________ of God because He deals with people ____________.

“So I was afraid and went out and hid your talent in the ground. See, here is what belongs to you.'” Mt 25:25

2. Not being certain of what’s going to happen on Judgment Day.

1 Jn 4:16-18

Benefits of Fearing God

1. You will experience the desire to offer true __________________.

“Who will not fear you, O Lord, and bring glory to your name? For you alone are holy. All nations will come and worship before you, for your righteous acts have been revealed.” Re 15:4

2. All your other  __________________ will go away.

“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” Ps 23:4

3. You obtain __________________ and ____________________.

“The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline.” Pr 1:7

4. You will feel the need to __________________ God.

“Oh, that their hearts would be inclined to fear me and keep all my commands always, so that it might go well with them and their children forever!” Dt 5:29

Why is it so Hard to Give God Total Control?

Sermon series: Hot Potatoes – 6 of 9

July 27, 2008

Ron Knapp





There is a _WAR_ going on inside us.

“We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin.  I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me.  I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out.  For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do–this I keep on doing.  Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me.  For in my inner being I delight in God’s law;  but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. ”              Romans 7:14-23

We ALL have this Struggle

Abraham -A Child with Hagar (Genesis 15-16)

Peter -Denial of Jesus (Matthew 26)

John the Baptist – Doubt (Matthew 11)

Giving total control to God, is a LIFETIME struggle and cannot fully happen in these BODIES.

” Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known. 1 Corinthians 13:12

Steps Towards Allowing God Greater Control

1. Spend time DAILY with God.

“Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Psalm 46:10

“But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” Luke 5:16

2. Align your will with GOD’S.

“Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.” Matthew 26:39

3. Be attentive to God at WORK.

“…I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.” Matthew 17:20

Are People Predestined to Become Christians?

Sermon series: Hot Potatoes – 5 of 9

July 20, 2008

Pastor John Fanous

Where Does This Question Comes From?

“No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him…” John 6:44

“You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit-fruit that will last.” John 15:16a

“When the Gentiles heard this, they were glad and honored the word of the Lord; and all who were appointed for eternal life believed.” Acts 13:48

But What About Choice?

Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28

“If anyone chooses to do God’s will, he will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own.” John 7:17

“This day I call heaven and earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live and that you may love the Lord your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him.” Deuteronomy 30:19-20a

Two Competing Beliefs About God



The Great Mystery

It’s all ____________


You have a  _________________

What You Can Learn From Calvinism

Luke 15:3-10

What You Can Learn From Arminianism

Luke 15:11:32

What It Means to be Chosen

The Lord had said to Abram, “Leave your country, your people and your father’s household and go to the land I will show you. I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” Genesis 12:1-3

Do We Have Free-Will If God Already Knows the Future?

Do We Have Free-Will If God Already Knows the Future?

Sermon series: Hot Potatoes – 3 of 9

July 6, 2008

Psalm 139

Pastor John Fanous

What Does God Know?

“O Lord, you have searched me and you know me.” Ps 139:1

1. God knows _________.

What are the good things you would want people to understand about you?

What are some of the bad things in your life you’d rather keep hidden?

“You know when I sit and when I rise; you perceive my thoughts from afar.” Ps 139:2

2. God knows my ______________________________.

“You discern my going out and my lying down; you are familiar with all my ways.” Ps 139:3

3. God knows my ______________________________.

“Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord.” Ps 139:4

4. God knows my ______________________________.

“If I say, ‘Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,’ even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.” Ps 139:11-12

5. God knows what others ______________ know about me.

How Does God Know All This?

1. Because God _______________________________.

“For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, your eyes saw my unformed body.” Ps 139:13-16a

2. Because God _______________________________.

“All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.” Ps 139:16b

How Should I Respond?

1. Recognize the _______________________________.

“How precious to?? me are your thoughts, O God! How vast is the sum of them! Were I to count them, they would outnumber the grains of sand. When I awake, I am still with you.” Ps 139:17-19

2. Be completely _________________ with God.

“If only you would slay the wicked, O God! Away from me, you bloodthirsty men! They speak of you with evil intent; your adversaries misuse your name. Do I not hate those who hate you, O Lord, and abhor those who rise up against you? I have nothing but hatred for them; I count them my enemies.” Ps 139:19-22

3. Give God _______________________.

“Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” Ps 139:23-24

What About Other Religions and Those Who Haven’t Heard About Jesus?

What About Other Religions and Those Who Haven’t Heard About Jesus?

June 29, 2008

Sermon series: Hot Potatoes – 2 of 9

Pastor John Fanous

The Belief: “All religions are just different legitimate attempts to discover God. To claim that one religion is the only way is exclusive and oppressive.”

Three Observations

1. This belief shows an ________________________ of religions.

2. This belief tends to justify one’s own __________________.

3. This belief is _________________________.

Big Question #1: Who will you trust to reveal God _________________?

Jesus kept pointing to _______________

“For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.” John 6:40

“I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12

“I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies.” John 11:25

“I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6

“We are not stoning you for any of these,” replied the Jews, “but for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God.” John 10:33

“But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins…” Mark 2:10

“I kept looking in the night visions, and behold, with the clouds of heaven One like a Son of Man was coming, and He came up to the Ancient of Days and was presented before Him. And to Him was given dominion, glory and a kingdom, that all the peoples, nations and men of every language might serve Him. His dominion is an everlasting dominion which will not pass away; and His kingdom is one which will not be destroyed.” Daniel 7:13-14 (NASB95)

“Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:12

Big Question #2: Who do ______ say Jesus is? (Mark 8:27-30)

Isn’t it exclusive to believe that Jesus is the only way?

Jesus got into trouble because of who he _________________.

But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” Luke 15:2

Why didn’t God provide multiple paths to Him?

God’s good news is essentially ____________________ in nature. It makes sense that God would choose to make us _____________ on others to learn about Him.

“And how can anyone tell them without being sent by the Lord? The Scriptures say it is a beautiful sight to see even the feet of someone coming to preach the good news.” Romans 10:15 (CEV)

We have replaced the value of love with the value of _________________.

What about those who haven’t heard about Jesus?

“For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.” Romans 1:20

We know that God is _______________ and ___________________.

“Even though I was once a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent man, I was shown mercy because I acted in ignorance and unbelief.” 1 Timothy 1:13

Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People?

Why Do Bad Things Happen to Good People?

June 22, 2008

Pastor John Fanous

How long, O Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen?

Or cry out to you, “Violence!” but you do not save?

Why do you make me look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrong?

Destruction and violence are before me; there is strife, and conflict abounds.

Habakkuk 1:2-3

This, then, is how you should pray:

“Our Father in heaven,

hallowed be your name,

your kingdom come,

your will be done on earth as it is in heaven…” Matthew 6:9-10

Important to remember:

It ________________  ? God’s _____________

But Isn’t God All-Powerful?

  • ______ and ________.
  • God gives us freedom to choose to _____________________.
  • With freedom comes the possibility for us to choose for ____________.
  • God chose to partially _________ His power by creating us __________.

Why Doesn’t God Intervene Every Time Someone Misuses Freedom?

  • If God prevented freedom every time it was going to be ____________, it wouldn’t be freedom.

How Does God Deal With Suffering?

1.       God ___________________________ your suffering through Jesus.

“But he took our suffering on him and felt our pain for us” Is 53:4 (NCV)

2.       God ___________________________ your suffering.

“You meant to hurt me, but God turned your evil into good…” Ge 50:20 (NCV)

3.       God ___________________________ suffering.

“I heard a loud voice shout from the throne: God’s home is now with his people. He will live with them, and they will be his own.. He will wipe all tears from their eyes, and there will be no more death, suffering, crying, or pain. These things of the past are gone forever.” Re 21:3-4 (CEV)

What Do I Do When I Am Suffering?

Habakkuk means to “______________” or to “________________”

Four Gifts a Father Can Pass On To His Children

Four Gifts a Father Can Pass On To His Children

Father’s Day, June 15, 2008

Pastor John Fanous

Genesis 48:1-16

GIFT #1: Give your _________________________ of God.

Jacob said to Joseph, “God Almighty appeared to me at Luz in the land of Canaan and blessed me. He said to me, ‘I will make you fruitful, and I will multiply your descendants…’” Ge 48:3-4a (NLT)

Then Jacob said to Joseph, “I never thought I would see your face again, but now God has let me see your children, too!” Ge 48:11 (NLT)

I revealed myself to those who did not ask for me; I was found by those who did not seek me. To a nation that did not call on my name, I said, ‘Here am I, here am I.’” Is 65:1

When the servant of the man of God got up early the next morning and went outside, there were troops, horses, and chariots everywhere. “Oh, sir, what will we do now?” the young man cried to Elisha. “Don’t be afraid!” Elisha told him. “For there are more on our side than on theirs!” Then Elisha prayed, “O Lord, open his eyes and let him see!” The Lord opened the young man’s eyes, and when he looked up, he saw that the hillside around Elisha was filled with horses and chariots of fire. 2 Ki 6:15-17 (NLT)

GIFT #2: Give your ______________________________.

“Jacob’s eyesight was failing because of his age, and he could not see very well. Joseph brought the boys to him, and he hugged them and kissed them.” Ge 48:10 (GNT)

“So he returned home to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him.” Lk 15:20 (NLT)

GIFT #3: Give your willingness to _______________________________.

“…the angel who has redeemed me from all evil, bless the boys…” Ge 48:16 (ESV)

“For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.” Ps 103:11-12

GIFT #4: Give your _________________________.

“But Jacob crossed his arms and put his right hand on the head of Ephraim who was the younger and his left hand on the head of Manasseh, the firstborn. Then he blessed them…” Ge 48:14-15a (The Message)

The angel of the Lord appeared to him and said to him, “The Lord is with you, you mighty warrior.” Jdg 6:12 (NRSV)

“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.” Ps 119:105

“Fathers, don’t exasperate your children by coming down hard on them. Take them by the hand and lead them in the way of the Master. ” Eph 6:4 (The Message)

How God Wants To Take Care of You Financially

How God Wants To Take Care of You Financially

Getting a Grip on Your Money – Part 4 of 4

Pastor John Fanous

June 8, 2008

“You cannot be the slave of two masters! You will like one more than the other or be more loyal to one than the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” Matthew 6:24

Serve Money Serve God

“Don’t worry and ask yourselves, ‘Will we have anything to eat? Will we have anything to drink? Will we have any clothes to wear?’ Only people who don’t know God are always worrying about such things…But more than anything else, put God’s work first and do what he wants. Then the other things will be yours as well.” Matthew 6:31,33



“Isn’t life more than food or clothing?” Mt 6:25

“Don’t store up treasures on earth! Moths and rust can destroy them, and thieves can break in and steal them. Instead, store up your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy them, and thieves cannot break in and steal them.” Mt 6:19-20

” Jesus answered: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, and mind.’ This is the first and most important commandment. The second most important commandment is like this one. And it is, ‘Love others as much as you love yourself.’” Mt 22:37-39

“YOU REALLY _________________ TO ME”

“Look at the birds in the sky! They don’t plant or harvest. They don’t even store grain in barns. Yet your Father in heaven takes care of them. Aren’t you worth more than birds?” Mt 6:26

“God gives such beauty to everything that grows in the fields, even though it is here today and thrown into a fire tomorrow. He will surely do even more for you! Why do you have such little faith?” Mt 6:30

“Your Father in heaven knows that you need all of these.” Mt 6:32b

“But God showed how much he loved us by having Christ die for us, even though we were sinful.” Ro 5:8

All Bible verses in this outline are from the Contemporary English Version (CEV)

Tools for Avoiding and Getting Out of Debt

Tools for Avoiding and Getting Out of Debt

Getting a Grip on Your Money – Part 3 of 4

Pastor John Fanous

June 1, 2008


Realize that debt makes you a ____________________

“Suppose some of your people become so poor that they have to sell themselves and become your slaves.” Le 25:39 (CEV)

“The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is servant to the lender.” Pr 22:7

Realize that God wants you to ___________________ and not borrow.

“The Lord will open the heavens, the storehouse of his bounty, to send rain on your land in season and to bless all the work of your hands. You will lend to many nations but will borrow from none. The Lord will make you the head, not the tail. If you pay attention to the commands of the Lord your God that I give you this day and carefully follow them, you will always be at the top, never at the bottom.” Dt 28:12-13

Be ___________________ with living simply.

“…Give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread. Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you and say, ‘Who is the Lord?’ Or I may become poor and steal, and so dishonor the name of my God.” Pr 30:8-9

Make a ________________________.

Plan carefully and you will have plenty; if you act too quickly, you will never

have enough.” Proverbs 21:5 (GNT)

Only charge for what you can ______________________ immediately.

” Let no debt remain outstanding…” Ro 13:8


(2 Kings 4:1-7)

“At the end of every seventh year there is to be a canceling of all debts! Every creditor shall write ‘Paid in full’ on any promissory note he holds against a fellow Israelite, for the Lord has released everyone from his obligation.” Dt 15:1-2 (The Living Bible)

1. Write down all your __________________

The wife of a man from the company of the prophets cried out to Elisha, “Your servant my husband is dead, and you know that he revered the Lord. But now his creditor is coming to take my two boys as his slaves.” Elisha replied to her, “How can I help you? Tell me, what do you have in your house?” “Your servant has nothing there at all,” she said, “except a little oil.”

2. Make a _______________________ plan

“The wicked borrow and do not repay…” Ps 37:21

Elisha said, “Go around and ask all your neighbors for empty jars. Don’t ask for just a few. Then go inside and shut the door behind you and your sons. Pour oil into all the jars, and as each is filled, put it to one side.”

3. Work hard and trust God for His ________________________

She left him and afterward shut the door behind her and her sons. They brought the jars to her and she kept pouring. When all the jars were full, she said to her son, “Bring me another one.” But he replied, “There is not a jar left.” Then the oil stopped flowing. She went and told the man of God, and he said, “Go, sell the oil and pay your debts. You and your sons can live on what is left.”