Summary: A message I preached to let my new church know what my: approach, attitude and aim would be as I share the word with them.

“Where I’m Coming From”

1When I came to you, brothers, I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. 2For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. 3I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling. 4My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit’s power, 5so that your faith might not rest on men’s wisdom, but on God’s power. 6We do, however, speak a message of wisdom among the mature, but not the wisdom of this age or of the rulers of this age, who are coming to nothing. 7No, we speak of God’s secret wisdom, a wisdom that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began. 8None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. 9However, as it is written: "No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him. – 1 Cor 2:1-9

Good morning. Today is day 15 of my ministry at SECC. (AND – they said it wouldn’t last). SO - are we having yet or what? FOR – the 4th time I get to break open and share with words, that are: God breathed; living and active; sharper than a double edged sword and can judge the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

AND SINCE – I plan on standing up here at least a few hundred more times… I thought it would be a good idea to tell you a little bit about the guy standing up here by this music stand.

• I was born on Feb 4, 1960 in Baltimore, Md

• Graduated High School in 1978

• Served in the USN on Submarines from 1978-1987.

• Graduated from FCC in 1992

• Served in East Tampa for about 6 years

• Was the pastor at CCC in Atlanta, Ga. for 8 years.

• Spent the last 1 ½ at RRCC as the pastor of Spiritual Formation.

• I married with 8 children (Chelsea is 23 and lives in Ind, John is 21 and is a Jr at UCF, Leila is 16 a Jr at Timber Creek, Mei-Leigh is 4, Jin Tao is 2 and we hope to travel before the end of the year to China to bring him home. I have 3 unofficial adopted sons – Jake 24 who lives in Ga.; Anthony who is 23 and is doing graduate work at Rutgers; Bo who is 20 and attends Valencia.

OKAY – that’s a very brief sketch of ‘who I am?’ BUT - I want to spend the rest of our time this morning… talking about ‘where I’m coming from’ using the passage from the pen of Paul that we just read. UNDERSTAND – I do not take lightly the responsibility of opening up the word of God. It’s a big deal to me because it’s a big deal to God. It’s through sharing the Word that people grow and are saved.

SO I THOUGHT - it would be good for me to let you know where I’m coming from, again as I said using to the text in 1 Corinthians 2.

The Apostle Paul went to Corinth during his second missionary journey, after he had left Athens, having presented there his well known sermon on Mars Hill. It was in Corinth that Paul met up with Aquilla and Pricilla and it was here that Paul worked for a time making tents. Paul stayed in Corinth for about 18 months, establishing and working with the church.

BUT REMEMBER – Paul was a man literally on a mission from God to take the Gospel to the Nations – so eventually had to leave and move on to other un-reached places to share the Good News with those who had yet to heard.

WELL - not that long after he left Corinth, Paul received a letter from the church, AND – when he opened it up, he found that the church had some issues:

• there were disagreements over doctrine

• division between people

• problems with sin

AND – not only that but the letter also talked about how after Paul left some guys came into the church and started to diss, put down, criticize and bad mouth Paul. THEIR – intent was to discredit both Paul and his message.

So in response to this letter from the Corinthian church Paul wrote the letter we know as 1st Corinthians, somewhere around 56 AD. AND – what Paul is doing in the verses that we are studying today is reminding his brothers and sisters back in Corinth what his ministry was like when he was with him. Basically Paul is telling the church – “Hey don’t let those guys fool you – you know what I was about and where I was coming from, when I was sharing the word of God with you…”

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