Chris Appleby Ministries

Chris Appleby Ministries


The Royal Priesthood in Action  audio (6MB)
1 Peter 2:4-12

Keep your Bibles open at 1 Peter, as we'll be looking at the passage just read, but also some sections before and after.
Last week Chris helped us see that our identity as Christians is to be 1 body, with 3 core attributes: faith, hope and love, and 9 fruit of the Spirit: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.... 

This opens up endless possibilities when applied to our daily lives. The apostle Peter in ch 2v5, creatively describes us as 'living' stones or bricks, but don't think of typical bricks, we're more like clay or play dough, that's alive! Because we're being moulded daily by our decisions into one spiritual house. Our lives are our spiritual offerings, which God accepts, because of Jesus. So our lives have an inward aspect, what we do 'at home' with God: worshipping God within the 'walls' of the 'house'. But they also have an outward aspect, the 'street appeal', in that a building faces the world.

We're going to look at just one way we hone our inward, 'at home' virtue of worship. Then we'll look at four ways we may hone our outward virtues...our 'street appeal': by humility, chastity, patience, and giving an account of our faith.

3 Virtues, 9 Fruit, 1 Body  audio (6MB)
Galatians 5:16-23

This is part of a series of sermons at St. Thomas' largely based upon Tom Wright's book 'Virtue Reborn.'

What would you say is the best known chapter in the Bible? My guess would be 1 Cor 13. It’s the chapter so often chosen by couples to have read at their wedding. But in fact it has nothing to do with weddings, apart from being about love, that is. Paul writes about love in the context of addressing the Corinthians’ desire to show just how spiritual they are. They think the way to show that you’re spiritual is to exercise some spiritual gift, especially the gift of tongues. Well, in ch. 12 Paul discusses the various gifts of the spirit, suggesting a hierarchy of gifts where tongues is way down the bottom. But then he goes on to suggest an even more excellent way to show how spiritual you are. That is, by demonstrating the Christian virtue of love, to which he adds faith and hope.
And from the description he gives it becomes clear that first of all this isn’t just a rule to obey or a principle for life but a virtue that will take a lot of work to develop. He lists a series of characteristics that go with or are absent from love. “4Love is patient; love is kind; love is not envious or boastful or arrogant 5or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6it does not rejoice in wrongdoing, but rejoices in the truth. 7It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” You hear that sort of list and you think, “You’d have to be a saint to live up to that wouldn’t you?” Well, of course, that’s the point, isn’t it? This is a list for saints; that is, for those who have been set apart for God’s kingdom.

Virtue 4 - The Kingdom Coming and the People Prepared audio (6MB)
Matthew 5:3-11

A while ago Andrew and I were trained to lead marriage preparation for engaged couples. One part of the course was on handling conflict, and we were taught about different ways people express anger. It was eye-opening for us, and explained why we got into a stew or a stalemate. The knowledge was helpful, but in those moments of conflict, we found it really hard to put the new knowledge into practice. It was dis-heartening, but we began to notice what we were doing more, and de-brief the quarrel afterwards. And each time we ran the course, we'd drive home and talk more probingly about what it felt like for each other in the heat of the struggle. Very slowly, we began to form new habits of handling conflict.

Virtue 5 - Brain Surgery  audio (6MB)
Colossians 3:1-17

This is part of a series of sermons at St. Thomas' based upon Tom Wright's book 'Virtue Reborn.

Before we start this morning, I’d like you to try a little exercise.  It’s designed to boost your attention and awareness, a good thing to do before we look at the Bible!  [If you want to try the exercise for yourself at home, watch this video.]

We’ll come back to this later.  For now, keep your bibles open to Colossians 3.  It’s a great example of what we’ve been looking at over the past four weeks.  It’s a clear picture of what virtue looks like.  Let’s pray as we come to look at it.

Virtue 3 - Priests and Rulers  audio (6MB)
1 Peter 2:1-10

This is the third in a series of sermons at St. Thomas' largely based upon Tom Wright's book 'Virtue Reborn.'

I wonder what you want to be when you grow up?  To give you a few minutes to think about it, we asked a few people that question this week.

[At this point in the sermon a video of a vix-pop of members of the congregation, youth group and a local school was played, each person answering the question, 'When I Grow Up I want to be....]

I wonder what you wanted to be when you grew up?  What you want to be when you grow up?

Contact Details

Phone: 0422187127