10 episodes

Serving Novato, Marin County, California and the World Wide Web. This feed broadcasts the latest reformed sermons and Sunday schools from Trinity Presbyterian Church (OPC) in Novato, CA. Our sermons seek to exposit Scripture, preaching Christ and the cross, and understanding the impact and demand of the Word on our lives.

Reformed Sermons and Sunday Schools at Trinity Presbyterian Church (OPC) in Novato, CA Rev. W. Reid Hankins

    • Religion & Spirituality
    • 5.0 • 3 Ratings

Serving Novato, Marin County, California and the World Wide Web. This feed broadcasts the latest reformed sermons and Sunday schools from Trinity Presbyterian Church (OPC) in Novato, CA. Our sermons seek to exposit Scripture, preaching Christ and the cross, and understanding the impact and demand of the Word on our lives.

    What is the Kingdom of God Like

    What is the Kingdom of God Like

    Sermon preached on Luke 14:1-24 by Rev. W. Reid Hankins during the Morning Worship Service at Trinity Presbyterian Church (OPC) on 06/12/2022 in Novato, CA.















    Sermon Manuscript







    Feasts are wonderful! While there are certainly pagan parties that are full of depravity, the Bible is not inherently against partying and celebrating. In fact, there are many positive examples of such in the Bible. And Jesus in today’s passage is at a feast of sorts – well, at least at a dinner invitation, a small feast, so to speak. There he spends much of his time teaching about feasts and banquets. Jesus’ teaching on such feasts has applications for here and now, but also for beyond this life. As Jesus touches on certain practical matters about both attending feasts and hosting them, he ultimately gets us to think beyond the feasts of this life to feasting we will do in glory. Verse 15 becomes thematic for today. That’s where someone rightly exclaims, “Blessed is everyone who will eat bread in the kingdom of God!” I want to say a big amen to that. And while Jesus didn’t himself say amen, he turned to give a parable of a Great Banquet that clearly looks to the kind of feasting we will do in the kingdom of God when it comes in glory. So then, today we will talk a lot about feasting, here and now, and unto eternity.







    Let us begin in our first point to consider verses 7-11 and see the lesson Jesus gives to those who are invited to attend this feast he is at. In other words, he’s speaking to the guests of a party. He’s at a party and he speaks to those in attendance. This certainly has application most immediately to people literally attending a feast here and now in this life. Verse 7 explains that Jesus gave a parable to teach to people who are invited guests to a feast. Sometimes Jesus’ parables are a lot more direct and to the point. This is surely one of them. What I mean is that often his parables are a made-up story about some completely unrelated topic but Jesus has a way to bring out a figurative application by way of analogy. But here, Jesus’ is teaching a lesson to party guests about how to pick seats and he gives them a parable about party guests picking seats! This is a pretty clear and direct parable as application goes!







    So then, Jesus tells this parable in verse 8. Imagine you go to a wedding feast. When you go there, don’t just go and sit down in the place of honor. Jesus says it is better to pick one of the less honorable seats and then have the host honor you by telling you to move to a seat of higher honor. Otherwise, you might get publicly humiliated if you pick too honorable of a seat and the host comes over and asks you to give that seat up for a more honorable guest. This parable relies on that fact that back then, there were certain spots that were considered more honorable than others at a feast. And wedding receptions today still generally have the same thing. Today there is usually a table up front and center for the wedding party, and the couple are seated at the center. Then family will have the tables closest to the party, and then less distinguished guests will fan out from there. Now today, it is not uncommon to have preassigned seating that would resolve this dilemma. But if they don’t, you should not just presume the best seats. You should let someone else exalt you, and not exalt yourself.







    Part of this is just practical wisdom. It literally is found in the book of Proverbs, and clearly Jesus drew his parable from there. Proverbs 25:6, “Do not put yourself forward in the king’s presence or stand in the place of the great, for it is better to be told, ‘Come up here,’ than to be put lower in the presence of a noble.” Yes, Jesus’ parable is a slightly different setting, but clearly the same topic and point. This can fall under practical wisdom because no on...

    • 38 min
    Belgic Confession, Article 27: The Holy Catholic Church

    Belgic Confession, Article 27: The Holy Catholic Church

    Sunday School class led by Rev. W. Reid Hankins at Trinity Presbyterian Church (OPC) on 06/12/2022 in Novato, CA, considering Article 29 of the Belgic Confession.

    • 42 min
    Belgic Confession, Article 27: The Holy Catholic Church

    Belgic Confession, Article 27: The Holy Catholic Church

    Sunday School class led by Mr. Benedict Ciavolella at Trinity Presbyterian Church (OPC) on 06/19/2022 in Novato, CA, considering the sacraments.

    • 41 min
    What is the Kingdom of God Like

    What is the Kingdom of God Like

    Sermon preached on Luke 13:18-14:6 by Rev. W. Reid Hankins during the Morning Worship Service at Trinity Presbyterian Church (OPC) on 06/05/2022 in Novato, CA.















    Sermon Manuscript







    Jesus’ ministry began by declaring the coming of the kingdom, that it was at hand. But then he spent times like this explaining what exactly that meant and what the coming of the kingdom would look like. His teachings here challenge simplistic assumptions and faulty expectations that people had about the nature of the coming kingdom. And of course, you can’t have a kingdom without a king. So, Jesus’ teachings here also challenge what people were expecting about the Messiah King that would be coming. Jesus, of course, is that long expected Messiah King. So then, we’ll consider our passage in the order seen in the text. First, we’ll consider the two related parables about the kingdom, verses 18-21. Then, second, we’ll consider how Jesus is asked if there will be few in the kingdom, verses 22-30. Then lastly, we’ll consider how Jesus is warned about Herod wanting to kill him, verses 31-35. These points all show how the actual coming of the kingdom will surprise common expectations.







    We begin in our first point then to consider these two related parables. I love how in this section we see Jesus asking these questions in verses 18 and 20 and which he then answers. Verse 18, “What is the kingdom of God like? And to what shall I compare it?” And again, in verse 20, “To what shall I compare the kingdom of God?” Jesus then gives parables as the answer to these questions. These questions teach us what might seem obvious. Parables are similes. They are given as analogies to use familiar circumstances to teach us about something, typically something about the kingdom. That is what Jesus does here. The parable of the mustard seed and the parable about the leaven teach us about the kingdom.







    In this instance, these two parables are clearly meant to be taken together. Sometimes we see Jesus give a string of different parables that each give us a different point of teaching. But sometimes like here he gives two parables that both generally make the same point. In this case, these two parables teach that the kingdom will be something that starts off small but over time slowly grows over time into its fullness. Therefore, when Jesus previously announced the imminent coming of the kingdom, it didn’t mean that the kingdom would imminently come right away in its full size and glory. It is these two parables that tells us to expect rather a gradual growth and expansion of the kingdom. In fact, like a tiny mustard seed, or like leaven, its beginnings may look humble, small, and trivial. But it will over time grow and expand into its final glory.







    So then, thinking specifically about the first parable, we remember how small a mustard seed is in comparison to the final mature tree. It can grow to be 10 or 15 feet. Here’s where we shouldn’t overthink analogies. There are certainly seeds for different kinds of plants that will grow to far bigger trees, such as redwoods. That misses the point. Jesus is simply using an analogy that teaches that the kingdom’s coming does not bring immediate worldwide visibility. It will need to grow and expand over time, like how a mustard seed turns into a mustard tree. In this parable, Jesus then emphasizes how the tree will grow into something useful for the birds to nest in. As a seed, it couldn’t do that. But as a mature tree it can and does. Some commentators point out how later in this passage Jesus mentions the Gentiles from all over the world coming into the kingdom and sees that illustrated even here with the birds. When the kingdom grows to its full height, it will become a home and refuge for its citizens.

    • 49 min
    Belgic Confession, Article 27: The Holy Catholic Church

    Belgic Confession, Article 27: The Holy Catholic Church

    Sunday School class led by Rev. W. Reid Hankins at Trinity Presbyterian Church (OPC) on 06/05/2022 in Novato, CA, considering Article 29 of the Belgic Confession.

    • 34 min
    Where Is Your Heart?

    Where Is Your Heart?

    Sermon preached on Luke 13:10-17 by Rev. W. Reid Hankins during the Morning Worship Service at Trinity Presbyterian Church (OPC) on 05/29/2022 in Novato, CA.















    Sermon Manuscript







    Today, Luke’s gospel returns to the topic of the Sabbath. Here, we again see Jesus teaching about the proper observance of the Sabbath. This was something Luke’s gospel drew our attention to back in chapter 6. There will be a short reprise of the topic again at the start of next chapter. Important topics are often repeated in the Bible with teaching given from different angles. Certainly, the observance of the Sabbath is an important teaching in the Bible. From the very beginning of creation, God set a pattern of one day in seven to be a day holy unto the Lord. In the Old Testament, we see that one repeated moral failing of Israel was in their failing to properly keep the Sabbath. They’d too often treat it like any other day. So, then at this time in the New Testament, in the name of keeping it, their leaders had actually been perverting it by adding extra man-made regulations to it. Jesus, then continues to correct their legalistic approach by teaching them the spirit of what the day was to be about. So then, let’s approach today’s passage in three points. First, we’ll consider this woman whom Jesus heals. Second, we’ll consider the response to Jesus so healing this woman, especially what the ruler of the synagogue had to say about it. Third, Jesus then responds to that and we’ll see how they respond to what Jesus has to say about this.







    We begin then first by considering this woman whom Jesus heals. Or, to say it another way, to consider this woman who Jesus looses from the bondage of Satan. Starting in verse 10, we see that the setting is the Sabbath. Jesus is where you would expect to find him on the Sabbath, there at the local synagogue teaching. Verse 11 then gets our attention. It says, “behold!” It draws our attention to see this poor woman. She had been disabled for eighteen years. She had some physical affliction that made it so she could not straighten herself. In other words, she was somehow stooped over. Commentators like to mention a specific medical condition at this point and think they can diagnose her, but I don’t see the value at trying to guess such a thing. I especially think this the case when verse 11 tells us that she had a disabling spirit that somehow brought that upon her. Again, we don’t know the details here. Elsewhere, we’ve seen demons cause various physical and bodily afflictions on people. We don’t know the details, but we know it was an affliction of the enemy. And it was a long standing one, as she had to suffer for eighteen years with this condition. And it is because this long standing condition was the result of demonic affliction, that Jesus says she is someone whom has been bound by Satan. She is somehow enslaved and captive by Satan in terms of this physical constraint.







    Yet while on the one hand she can be described as a woman bound by Satan, we find a contrasting description of her in verse 16. Jesus also describes her as a daughter of Abraham. That tells us she is part of God’s covenant people. It reminds us of the promises God made to Abraham, that he would bringing blessing through his offspring. A number of commentators think Jesus means to commend her conduct her too, that she lives as one who is a daughter of Abraham. And so Jesus wants to draw us to have mercy and pity and compassion for this saint who has been so ill treated for so long.







    So then, notice that Jesus takes the initiative here to heal her. Verse 12, Jesus sees here. He calls her over to himself. He speaks to her to declare her freedom, “Woman, you are free from your disability.” He reaches out and touches his hands upon here, to bestow upon her the blessing of healing.

    • 49 min

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