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SERMON: A STRANGE COMMAND

11:00 am Service | Sunday, November 28, 2021 

Philippians 4:4

Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice.

Introduction

Paul is writing a “thank–you” letter from a prison cell. Paul had a special relationship with the church at Philippi. This was the only congregation that Paul allowed to make donations to his ministry. He is gentle-spirited, reflective, and downright fatherly in this writing, except for verse four.  The syntax of verse four is odd. The words and the syntax do not match. Or do they? Paul uses what Greek scholars sometimes call the “military mood.” He used the language of a commanding officer or a drill sergeant and tells them to rejoice. Normally, it would be harsh language. If he were writing today in English, he would write, “You better rejoice, and I mean it! I’m not playing with you!”

This strange command of Paul is applicable at all times, but especially during this holiday season. I like to call it Thanksmas - the period from Thanksgiving to New Year’s Day. (Reverend Victor Pentz, the former pastor of the Peachtree Presbyterian Church first used this term.) This season in which we should be the most joyful can be a time of great sorrow and sadness for many. For many it will be the first holiday season without the physical presence of a loved-one. For others it is a time when major medical issues are addressed to comply with the insurance company’s stipulations and the procedure or surgery is performed before the year ends. There are others who are socially awkward and do not make friends easily; this could be a time of painful loneliness for them. Still there are others who use this season as a time of self-evaluation and it appears no progress has been made since this same time last year. Their financial position has not changed or maybe even gotten worse. Some are sad because another year has passed and they still have not found Mister or Miss Right. Even listening to the daily news can be a downer. Christ did not mean for us to experience gloom and doom constantly. He wants us to have life in an abundant way, despite the tricks of the devil. This is why He had Paul to pen these words. The devil knows he cannot take away our salvation, so he will try to take our joy and make us miserable as we journey on our way to heaven. Don’t let him do that! So let’s look at some Biblical ways to assure that we will rejoice always.

EXPOSITION

1. Think About The Person Of Our Lord.

    (Just Think About Who Jesus Is.)

2. Think About The Promises of Our Lord.

    (Some Theologians Say There Are Close To Nine Thousand in the Bible.)

    (Most Have Already Been Fulfilled.)

3. Think About the Provisions Of Our Lord.

    (He Provides Our Needs According To His Riches In Glory.)     

    (He Will Put The Right People In Your Life.)

    (Please Recognize Them.)

4. Think About The Power Of Our Lord.

    (All Power And Authority Are In His Hands.)

    (Dunamis And Exousia.)

5. Experience the Presence of Our Lord.

    (Experience Him Through Prayer, Praise, And Meditation Of The Word.)

  

Closing Thoughts

Paul did not say, “Rejoice in your health.” One’s health can fail. Paul did not say, “Rejoice in your wealth.” You may not have wealth and even if you do, you could lose it. Rather, Paul said, “Rejoice in the Lord alway.” Many things in life can cause us to become downcast, disappointed, and discouraged. When this happens, just look in the mirror and become your own drill sergeant and say, “You better rejoice and I mean it.” Obey that command and I guarantee you will instantly feel better and your day will be brighter. Give God Glory! Give God All The Glory!

Copyright © 2021 by James C. Ward

All Rights Reserved

Sermons

Date

Scripture Reference

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A STRANGE COMMAND

11/28/2021

Philippians 4:4

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THANKSGIVING ON DEATH ROW

11/21/2021

Acts 28:15

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A SOLDIER AND A PREACHER

11/14/2021

Acts 10:1-6

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BOTHERED BY BEASTS AND ASSISTED BY ANGELS

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Mark 1:9-13

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SURVIVING THE THINGS YOU DREAD

10/24/2021

Job 3:25; Job 42:12a

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GRACE FOR THE IMPERFECT

10/17/2021

Philippians 3:12-14

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CHEAP BUT VALUABLE

10/10/2021

Matthew 10:29-31; Luke 12:6-7

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DRINKING FROM A BITTER CUP

10/3/2021

Matthew 26:39

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HOLD YOUR HOLT PART TWO

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2nd Timothy 1:13

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HOLD YOUR HOLT

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1st Thessalonians 5:21

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A WORD OF ENCOURAGEMENT FOR TOUGH TIMES

9/12/2021

John 10:10

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RUNNING ON EMPTY

8/22/2021

1st Kings 17:8-16

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THE CHURCH HAVING CHURCH

8/15/2021

Psalm 100:1-5

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THE JOY OF GOD’S HOUSE

8/8/2021

Psalm 122:1-2

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THE HOLY LAMB OF GOD

8/1/2021

John 1:29

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THE MAN WHO WENT BACKWARD TO THE FUTURE

7/25/2021

Genesis 5:24; Hebrews 11:5-6

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WHEN IT GETS WORSE BEFORE IT GETS BETTER

7/18/2021

Mark 9:21-27

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VICTORIOUS LIVING DURING THESE CHALLENGING TIMES

7/11/2021

Titus 2:12b

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RICHER THAN BEFORE

6/27/2021

Job 23:10

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A NOBLE FATHER

6/20/2021

John 4:46-54

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PRAYER A TOP PRIORITY

6/13/2021

1st Timothy 2:1-8

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AN EBENEZER MOMENT

6/6/2021

1st Samuel 7:5-12

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MAINTAINING YOUR FOOTING IN A SLIPPERY WORLD

5/23/2021

Psalm 73:1-3

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THE STORM MASTER

5/13/2021

John 6: 14-21

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A MOTHER’S TATTOO

5/9/2021

Isaiah 49:15-16

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RAHAB’S RED ROPE

5/2/2021

Joshua 2:15; Joshua 2:18; Joshua 2:21; Joshua 6:17; Joshua 6:25

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THE OLD SHIP OF ZION

4/25/2021

Genesis 8: 1-4

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SERMON THEY ARE ROOTING FOR US, LET’S REPRESENT

4/18/2021

Hebrews 12:1-2a

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ECCLESIOLOGY 101

4/11/2021

Matthew 16:13-18

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HOLY HEARTBURN

4/4/2021

Luke 24:27-33

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3/28/2021

Matthew 21:8-11

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A PRETTY LADY IN AN UGLY SITUATION

3/21/2021

Song of Solomon 8:10a

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THE ROOT WAS NOT DESTROYED

3/7/2021

Isaiah 53: 1-2a

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TELL IT LIKE IT WAS PART THREE

2/28/2021

John 5:2-4

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TELL IT LIKE IT WAS PART TWO

2/21/2021

Isaiah 5:20; John 8:32

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TELL IT LIKE IT WAS

2/14/2021

Ecclesiastes 9: 14-16; Matthew 28:11-15

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ANYWHERE ANYTIME ANYBODY

2/7/2021

Luke 23:39-43

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IT CAN HAPPEN TO THE BEST OF US

1/31/2021

Matthew 11:2-6

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WHEN GOD REMOVES CHARIOT WHEELS

1/24/2021

Exodus 14:21-25a

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DRUNK AT A CRITICAL TIME

1/17/2021

Genesis 9:20-21

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LEARNING FROM LIFE'S LESSONS

1/10/2021 Isaiah 43: 16-19 PDF

AN OLD DOXOLOGY FOR A NEW YEAR

1/3/2021

Jude 24-25

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MAKING IT ON BROKEN PIECES

12/31/2020

Acts 27:41-44

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PERFECT HAND-EYE COORDINATION

12/27/2020

Deuteronomy 6:20-21; Proverb 15:3

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ANOTHER WAY HOME

12/20/2020

Matthew 2:12

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THE LESSONS OF BETHLEHEM

12/13/2020

Micah 5:2; Luke 2:1-7

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THE IMAGE OF THE INVISIBLE

12/06/2020

Colossians 1:14-15a

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SEVEN LESSONS FROM A CUPBEARER

11/29/2020 Nehemiah 6:1-4 PDF

WHERE’S MY PIE? (A THANKSGIVING SERMON)

11/22/2020

Ephesians 5:20; 1st Thessalonians 5:18  

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TRUST

11/15/2020

Psalm 37:3; Proverbs 3:5

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A GOOD SOLDIER

11/8/2020

2ND Timothy 2:3-4

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THE TRUTH ABOUT THE TRUTH

11/1/2020

John 18:37-38

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THE SERVANTS’ BIG SECRET

10/25/2020

John 2:1-11

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10/18/2020

John 6:66-69

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THE RIGHT BOOK FOR ROUGH TIMES

10/11/2020

2nd Timothy 3:16-17

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THE GREATEST GRACE, BY THE GREATEST PERSON, BEFORE THE GREATEST MEAL

10/4/2020

Matthew 26: 26-28

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9/27/2020

Joshua 3:3-5

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PLEASE DON’T DOWN PLAY YOUR BLESSINGS

9/20/2020

Psalm 103:1-2

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THE 5TH SEASON

9/13/2020

Galatians 6:9

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A DIFFERENT METAPHOR 

9/6/2020

John 12:23-24

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TWO MEN, TWO HOUSES, AND ONE STORM

8/30/2020

Matthew 7:24-27

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LORD HELP ME: I’M MAD AS A HORNET

8/23/2020

Psalm 137:1-9

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A SIMPLE SERMON ABOUT SMOOTH STONES

8/16/2020

1st Samuel 17:40

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WEAK WEARY AND WORN BUT NOT WASHED UP

8/9/2020

2nd Samuel 3:39

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THE NEW NORMAL

8/2/2020

2nd Corinthians 5:17

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WHEN THE SYSTEM IS STACKED AGAINST YOU

7/26/2020

John 4:4-30; John 4:39-42

PDF

TWO SICK MEN AND ONE IS ASYMPTOMATIC

7/19/2020

LUKE 18:9-14

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THIS AIN’T NO TIME FOR WIMPS

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2ND TIMOTHY 1:7

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7/05/2020

Exodus 12:1-13a

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A TOUCHING STORY

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Mark 5:25-34

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THE LEGACY OF A CHRISTIAN FATHER

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Proverbs 13:22a

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BEYOND THE CLASSROOM

6/14/2020

Matthew 10:16

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THE CROSS-WISE FOLLY

6/07/2020

1ST Corinthians 1:18, 1st Corinthians 2:2

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WHY WE NEED THE HOLY SPIRIT

5/31/2020

John 16:7, Acts 2:1-8

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THE GIANTS KEEP A-COMING

5/24/2020

2nd Samuel 21:15-22

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5/17/2020

JUDGES 6:11-16

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JOCHEBED A MOTHER WHO BEAT THE ODDS

5/10/2020

Exodus 2:3

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THE LOVE OF GOD

5/3/2020 Jeremiah 31:3, Romans 5:8 PDF

DON’T YOU DARE WASTE THIS PANDEMIC

4/26/2020

2nd Corinthians 11:24-28

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HOW’S YOUR LOVE LIFE?

4/19/2020

Mark 12:30-31, John 21:15-17

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THEY NEVER STOPPED TALKING ABOUT IT

4/12/2020

1st Corinthians 6:14

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WHEN REALITY SLAPS YOU IN THE FACE

4/5/2020

Luke 19:29-41

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    "God's grace and mercy allowed us to be the greatest church in the universe." ~Pastor Ward

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