Sermons by Matt Heerema

Sermons by Matt Heerema

Matt serves as lead pastor, and focuses on teaching, leadership, and theological development. He and his wife Nancy have four daughters. He is a musician and led in Stonebrook’s music ministry for 15 years before putting the guitar down. Matt is an avid reader and massive sci-fi geek. As a bi-vocational pastor, he also directs Mere Agency whose goal is to help the church use the web to impact the world with the gospel. You can connect with him at mattheerema.com.

Bring Your Nothing

Please open your bibles with me to Luke chapter 4.  Today we get to look at Luke’s account of the beginning of Jesus’s public ministry. It is a puzzling exchange! At first people seem to be excited about Jesus. Then he says some things that, if you don’t have the Old Testament memorized (raise your hand quick if you do?) Seem extremely cryptic, after which they try to kill him. (well, that escalated quickly….) I’m hopeful today that as we…

The Last Adam, Luke 3:23-4:15

I’m very excited for today’s sermon. I get to recite to you a list of 76 names, all of which are very difficult to pronounce! It really is a great section of scripture.  No seriously though, this is going to be a good day, the genealogies first, but then we get into a very strange exchange: one of only four or five appearances of the devil in the entire bible, and he’s talking directly with Jesus!  Genealogies were used by…

First of all, Pray. The Effect of the Gospel on the Gathered Church

First I’ll set the stage, the context of the letter. The Apostle Paul had an interesting problem on his hands.  He had spent three years with the church he started in Ephesus, living with them and instructing them night and day, imparting to them the whole counsel of God.   After this he wrote them a definitive letter reminding them of The Gospel and instructing them in how they were to conduct themselves.   Now, just a few short years…

Zechariah 3: The High Priest’s Dirty Robes

We are continuing our series through the minor prophets this morning in Zechariah. Please turn there with me. Zechariah is the longest of the minor prophets. Same chapter count as Hosea, but more words. It has been called “little Isaiah” – because it picks up on many of the same themes and uses similar imagery.  The book is very complex and as far as an efficient summary and outline of the book as a whole, I don’t think I can…

Zephaniah: The Day of the Lord

1 The word of the Lord that came to Zephaniah the son of Cushi, son of Gedaliah, son of Amariah, son of Hezekiah, in the days of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah. Zephaniah 1:1 (ESV) We know a lot about Zephaniah from this one verse! Zephaniah has the most complete genealogical listing of any of the prophets, and it’s here for a reason. He was the great, great, grandson of one of the few faithful kings of…

Let Justice Roll – Amos

This week we will look at the book of Amos, the first prophet to the Northern Kingdom. The nation of Israel hid immorality, greed, oppression of the poor and weak, and many other sins behind a veneer if religious performance. The prophet calls them (and so, us) back to worship of the true God from the heart, evidenced by love for their neighbor and a passion for justice and righteousness.

Unity in disagreement for mission.

The mission of Jesus’s church is to bring glory to God by making disciples. Jesus taught us that unity is a cornerstone of this mission. Three enemies of unity are inaction, improper handling of disagreement, and false doctrine. This week we will examine the scriptures to find out how we can navigate disagreement well in the pursuit of unity and sound doctrine. And in so doing we will learn how to advance the mission: bringing God glory and helping people come to know him.

2 Peter, part 1 – A Fruitful and Effective Life

For the next several weeks, rather than a long walk through a single book of the Bible, or a thematic series, we’re going to take time to preach through some of the shorter books of the new testament. Two years ago we hit some of the shortest letters, 1, 2, 3 John – for the next five weeks we are going to cover 2 Peter, Jude, and Philemon. We’re starting with 2 Peter this AM and doing about a chapter…

The Final Rescue

This Sunday is the second Christmas Sunday! We have four days left! Hooray! 🙂 Christmas is the time of year when we, in a special way, remember and celebrate the birth of Christ, and the beginning of his rescue mission to find and save God’s lost sheep.  We carried our Advent series topic, Rescues, on into Christmas as well, because what bigger Rescue is there than Christ’s rescue of us?  Last week we talked about Christ’s rescue mission in offering…

Rescue: Famine

This advent season, we are looking at  stories of God’s amazing rescues of his people through history. This week we are going to examine the life of Joseph as recounted in Genesis. We will see God’s amazing rescue of Joseph, and then using him to rescue the fledgling nation of Israel, and the whole world from a global famine. In this story we will learn that we can find hope and safety in God’s promises, no matter our circumstances on…

The Twenty-Ninth Chapter

As we look back on the 28 chapters of Luke’s account of the early church, we find Jesus making and keeping a promises to his followers: “You will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth…”  (Acts 1:8)  Notice the form of this verse. It’s not a mission statement. It’s not a command. It’s a promise: “You will be my…

Acts 15: Disagreements, Debates, & Decisions

In this week’s section, we examine several conflicts that arose in the church as they spread “to the remotest parts of the earth”. With gentiles now becoming a large part of the community of faith, the chosen people of God, how ought they operate? New situations and clashing cultural habits lead to some difficult conversations and decisions.  As we look at how the church handled these situations, we gain insight into how to handle disagreements and decisions in our churches today.

The Conversion of a Christian Killer

This week, as we continue our Acts series, we see how the Holy Spirit worked to further his mission of expanding the church through one of the most dramatic and important conversion stories we see in the Bible: Saul of Tarsus. The “Hebrew of Hebrews”, was so zealous for God that he would not tolerate this new sect of Messianic heretics, followers of “The Way”.  They claimed that Jesus, the one who suffered the horrific shame of crucifixion, proving that…

Signs and Wonders

This morning we are in our fifth week of our walkthrough of the book of Acts. Please open your bibles with me to Acts chapter 3. We’ll be covering a fairly large part of scripture today. Chapter 3, about a third of chapter 4, and a bit from chapter 5. There’s  a lot going on in this section, and we’ll be making two passes through here at least to cover some important themes. This morning, I want to talk about…

The Beginning of the End

We continue our walk through of Acts this week by looking at the very beginning of “The Last Days” – a period of time foretold by Old Testament Prophets – the age where God’s Holy Spirit is no longer limited to a single location in a single nation, but is now poured out on all who believe in Jesus, God’s Messiah. Luke chronicles the events of the beginning of “The Last Days” – Some amazing things happen! We will discuss how these events relate to us today as a church, and how we too should proclaim the mighty works of God to all nations.

Acts: The Holy Spirit and His Unstoppable Church – Part 1

This week we’re beginning a 17-week walkthrough of the book of Acts. In Acts we find Luke the Physician writing down a careful history of the progress of the gospel from Jerusalem to the ends of the earth. In Acts, we can find courage in the certainty of Jesus’s triumph over sin and death, and in the fact that no power of hell or scheme of man can stop God’s plan to spread the good news of His son Jesus…

Colorblind: Our Struggle to See the Multicolor Image of God

This past Tuesday morning, after I had spent several days preparing to handle  the tricky subjects of the fire, eternal damnation, and tribulation described in 2 Thessalonians 1, the elders decided we needed tackle something actually controversial today: Racial harmony and social justice.  In case you’ve been hiding in a cave somewhere for the past few months, recently George Floyd’s murder at the hands of a police officer in Minnesota were captured in a gruesome 9 minute video, sparking protesting…

Stand Fast in Affliction

Our passage for today was written at a time when the apostle Paul, the spiritual father of the church, was kept from seeing the people in the church, kept from meeting with them and knowing how they were. And it opens with these words, which seem particularly apt for this day. Week 10 of being unable to meet together as a large group and our passage begins with: “…when we could bear it no longer…”  1 Thessalonians 3:1–13 (ESV) 1…