1. Belief is Necessary (Verse 16)
2. We Must Go (Verse 15)

I invite you to open your Bibles to the gospel of Mark, and turn to the final chapter -- chapter 16. Toda, we will be in some of the final verses in that chapter, verses 15 and 16.

Just over a year ago, we began this wonderful testimony to the life of Jesus Christ. Today, we finish. This is my 43rd and final message in this wonderful book. I was planning to finish it last week. But, there was simply too much in the text to get to. If you remember, I sort of skipped quickly passed two verses, thinking that it would be best if we look at them this week. These verses are really the core of Mark's extended ending.

These two verses are where Jesus gives His disciples His main application for their lives. They had spent three years with Jesus. They had seen some very special things. They had a front row seat to all of His teaching. They witnessed all of His miracles. They observed how Jesus confronted the Pharisees and Sadducees. They saw Him suffer and die.

And now, Jesus had risen from the dead. Shortly, he would leave the earth by ascending into heaven. He would leave these men He loves. And here is some of His final counsel to them.

Mark 16:15-16
And He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned.

I know that Jesus often repeated similar words to His disciples after His resurrection. He was with the disciples for 40 days after His resurrection teaching them about the kingdom of God (Acts 1:3). Similar words appear in all four gospel accounts. None of them are quite the same. But all of them have the same flavor.

Matthew records Jesus saying the following:

Matthew 28:18-20
And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, "All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age."

Luke recorded it this way:

Luke 24:46-49
and He said to them, "Thus it is written, that the Christ would suffer and rise again from the dead the third day, and that repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. And behold, I am sending forth the promise of My Father upon you; but you are to stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high."

John recorded it this way:

John 20:21
So Jesus said to them again, "Peace be with you; as the Father has sent Me, I also send you."

Each of these statements has some sort of a promise or statement of authority or assurance. "All authority has been given to Me" (Matt. 28:18). "You are witnesses of these things" (Luke 24:48). "The Father has sent Me" (John 20:21).

Each of these statements has a call to go and spread the message. "Go and make disciples of all the nations" (Matt. 28:19). "Repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations" (Luke 24:47). "I also send you" (John 20:21).

That's exactly what we see here in Mark 16:15-16. Verse 16 contains the promise.

Mark 16:16
He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned.

It's a promise to those who believe. It's a promise to those who don't believe. And in verse 15, we see the call to go.

Mark 16:15
Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.

When Jesus came upon the earth, it wasn't merely that He would be known in His generation by those who lived in Israel during His days. No, Jesus came upon the earth to be known by all nations. The only way that this was would take place is for His disciples to "go" and tell the good news of His coming to others. My message this morning is taken from this command. My message is simply entitled, "Go!"

It's what Jesus told the disciples to do. It's what I'm calling us to do. I want for us to "Go" and tell the good news.

As we work through our text, we are going to work backwards. We will begin with verse 16. Then, we'll look at verse 15. Here's my first point:
1. Belief is Necessary (Verse 16)

This is the message of verse 16, ...

Mark 16:16
He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned.

Now, if you are observant, you will notice that baptism appears to be a condition for salvation. You need to believe -- and be baptized -- in order to be saved. That appears to be what the text says. But, my point mentions only faith. Belief is Necessary (Verse 16)

Why didn't I mention baptism? Why did I say that salvation is only by faith?

Well, first of all, I trust that you remember my message last week. The text of Mark 16:9-20 is in doubt. There are good reasons to believe the text should be included in our Bibles. There are reasons to believe that the text shouldn't be included. We cannot be definitive, like we are with the vast majority of our Bibles.

Perhaps you remember what John MacArthur wrote in his Study Bible, "[The longer ending of Mark] should always be compared with the rest of Scripture, and no doctrines should be formulated based solely on them." [1]

So, if this is the only place in the Bible that mentions that salvation comes through baptism, then we ought to be skeptical. And certainly, the Bible nowhere teaches that you must be baptized to be saved. Rather, over and over again, we are told that it is those who believe who will be saved -- apart from baptism.

We know well the words of Jesus in John 3:16, "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life." Nowhere even close in the passage is there any mention of baptism as necessary to be saved. Rather, salvation comes only by faith. Salvation comes only by believing in the Son of God, Jesus Christ.

Paul said the same thing in Ephesians, ...

Ephesians 2:8-9
For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast.

Nowhere even close in the passage is there any mention of baptism as necessary to be saved. Rather, salvation comes only through faith. Salvation comes only by trust in Jesus Christ.

In fact, in these verses, Paul goes out of his way to demonstrate that we are not saved by anything that we do! In Ephesians 2:8, he says that we are saved "by grace." That is, by the grace of God. By God's working in us. And in Ephesians 2:9, he says that our salvation is "not as a result of works, so that no one may boast." In other words, there is nothing that we might do to be saved -- not even baptism.

Paul knew this very well. In 1 Corinthians 1:17, Paul wrote, "For Christ did not send me to baptize, but to preach the gospel." Consider well what Paul said. He was sent by Jesus Christ to preach the gospel. Jesus told him on the road to Damascus that he would "bear My name before the Gentiles and kings and the sons of Israel" (Acts 9:15). And Paul went out.

Paul went out as a missionary from the church in Antioch (Acts 13:1-3). He travelled to Cyprus and Perga and Psidia and Iconium and Lystra and Derbe (Acts 13-14), preaching the gospel. Paul brought the gospel to Galatia and Macedonia and Philippi (Acts 16). He was the first to bring the gospel to Thessalonica and Berea and Athens (Acts 17). He planted church in Corinth (Acts 18) and Ephesus (Acts 19). Eventually, he ended up in Rome, longing to continue on to Spain (Romans 15:24). He said, "I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek" (Romans 1:16). So passionate was Paul for the gospel that he said, "I aspired to preach the gospel, not where Christ was already named, so that I would not build on another man's foundation" (Romans 15:20).

Paul had a large heart for the unsaved. He longed that others would come to saving faith in Jesus Christ, especially those who had never heard the gospel. He longed for others to be saved from their sins and escape the fires of hell. He longed for others to know the joy of glorify Jesus and enjoying Him forever! And so, Paul went out and preached the gospel to all who would listen. He said, "From Jerusalem and round about as far as Illyricum I have fully preached the gospel of Christ" (Romans 15:19).

But, in all this preaching, Paul said that he was not sent to baptize (1 Corinthians 1:17). Now, if baptism was necessary for salvation, don't you think that Paul would have been about the business of baptizing people, that they might be saved?

Now, it's not that Paul never baptized anybody. In fact, in 1 Corinthians 1, he gave several specific names of people that he baptized. But, his calling was not a calling to baptize. His calling was a calling to preach the gospel to see people enter the kingdom. And this comes only through faith in Jesus Christ.

So, I don't think that we should stand upon Mark 16:16 and contend that baptism is required for salvation. The rest of the New Testament shows such a conclusion to be incorrect. I don't believe that this verse is teaching that you must be baptized to be saved. This is made clear by the second half of the verse: "... he who has disbelieved shall be condemned."

Unbelief is the only condition given to condemn a man. If people fail to believe in Jesus, they will be condemned. Lack of baptism isn't even mentioned in the second half of the verse at all. In other words, a lack of baptism isn't sufficient to condemn. It's only unbelief that will condemn.

The corollary must be true. It's only faith that saves.

Charles Spurgeon said it better than I.

Baptism without faith saves no one. The text says, "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved;" but whether a man be baptized or no, it asserts that "he that believeth not shall be damned:" so that baptism does not save the unbeliever, nay, it does not in any degree exempt him from the common doom of all the ungodly. He may have baptism, or he may not have baptism, but if he believeth not, he shall be in any case most surely damned. Let him be baptized by immersion or sprinkling, in his infancy, or in his adult age, if he be not led to put his trust in Jesus Christ—if he remaineth an unbeliever, then this terrible doom is pronounced upon him—"He that believeth not shall be damned." [2]

I trust this is clear. If not, I'd be glad to speak with you later about it..

Now, having said all of that, here's my next question: "Why is baptism so closely linked to saving faith in this verse?" I mean, why even mention baptism at all? I believe the answer to the question has to do with baptism in the early church. In the early church, those who came to faith in Christ were immediately baptized, as a sign that they were believers in Christ.

After Peter preached his sermon on the day of Pentecost, we read, "Those who had received his word were baptized" (Acts 2:41) -- all 3,000 of them! They believed Peter and were immediately baptized.

After Philip preached Jesus to the Ethiopian Eunuch, they were travelling along the road in a chariot. The Eunuch said, "Look! Water! What prevents me from being baptized?" (Acts 8:36). Philip said, "If you believe with all your heart you may." (Acts 8:37). The Eunuch responded, "I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God" (Acts 8:37). So, Philip "ordered the chariot to stop; and they both went down into the water, Philip as well as the eunuch, and he baptized him" (Acts 8:38). This is the pattern of the early church: the Eunuch believed and was immediately baptized.

When Peter brought the gospel to the household of Cornelius, we see the same thing. Peter preached. Then, "The Holy Spirit fell upon all those who were listening to the message." They were speaking in tongues and were exalting God. These are obvious signs of belief. Seeing these signs of belief, Peter then said, "Surely no one can refuse the water for these to be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we did, can he?" (Acts 10:47). They were baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.

When Lydia, the first convert in Asia, heard the gospel, "the Lord opened her heart to respond to the things spoken by Paul" (Acts 16:14). Before Paul left town, "she and her household [was] baptized" (Acts 16:15). The same is true with the Philippian jailor. When he witnessed the faith of Paul and Silas singing in the prison, he asked them, "What must I do to be saved?" (Acts 16:30). They said, "Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved, you and your household" (Acts 16:31). His whole household believed (Acts 16:34) and was baptized (Acts 16:31) that very night. Paul and Silas were run out of town the very next day (Acts 16:35-40).

This is the pattern of the early church. When people came to faith in Jesus, they were immediately baptized, as a testimony to all of where they were placing their trust. They had found forgiveness through Jesus. And then, through baptism, they were giving testimony of their identification with Christ, allowing the cleansing metaphor of baptism to picture how their sins had been washed away.

And so we understand Mark 16:16, ...

Mark 16:16
He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned.

The early church knew nothing of an unbaptized believer. When you believed in Jesus, you were baptized. The baptism didn't save! It was the belief that saved. But, all who believed were baptized.

Unfortunately, such is not the case today. There are many today who have professed faith in Christ, but have never been baptized. If that is you this morning, be baptized. Let the weight of Mark 16:16 weigh upon you. "He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved."

At Rock Valley Bible Church, we don't have a baptismal font. I like the fact that we don't have a baptismal font. I'm in no hurry to build one here at the building, either. I like the way that we do baptisms. We do them like the early church did them, in a public place for the world to see. Following Christ in the waters of baptism is, by nature, a very public event. You are telling the world that you have repented of your sin, and you are now following Christ. How much better to do them in a public place, than in a church building, surrounded by Christians.

We have done our baptisms at Olson Lake. Working with the Park District, they segment off a portion of the beach for us. We come and have our baptisms. Those out for a Sunday swim get to watch something that they may not have expected to see. They get to see a picture of the gospel. It's a great time!

If you want to be baptized, please come and speak with me. If you have any questions about this, come and speak with me. We can talk about what baptism is, and we can arrange a baptism service this summer.

If you haven't been baptized, you may fall into the condemnation of the second half of verse 16 -- "... who has disbelieved shall be condemned." It may be that your refusal to be baptized is really a manifestation of your unbelief. So, I encourage you to follow the Lord in obedience by being baptized according to His command.

Let's get back to my first point this morning, Belief is Necessary (Verse 16) If you will again look at verse 16, you will discover that life and death hang in the balance in verse 16. There's a path to life, called salvation, which only comes by faith. There's a path to death, called condemnation, which comes by disbelief. You either believe and are saved; or, you disbelieve and are condemned.

This is serious stuff. And from what we know of the book of Mark, and from what we know of the New Testament, the only faith that saves is faith in Jesus Christ. If you don't believe in Jesus, you don't have saving faith.

Jesus said, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me" (John 14:6). Peter said, "There is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12). "There is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, the man Christ Jesus" (1 Timothy 2:5). John 3:36 says it this way, "He who believes in the Son has eternal life; but he who does not obey the Son will not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him."

Please let that sink in. There couldn't be anything more important in this life than that men and women and boys and girls come to saving faith in Jesus Christ. It will have eternal implications. They will either enjoy the presence of Jesus forever. Or, they will endure the punishment of hell forever.

This is the basis for my second point this morning, ...
2. We Must Go (Verse 15)

Jesus said, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation" (verse 15). If people are really perishing without Christ, then we are compelled to go and tell them. It is our duty. It is our responsibility. This morning, I want you to feel this.

If people don't hear the good news of Mark 10:45, "The Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve and to give His life a ransom for many," then they won't believe. And if they won't believe, then they won't be saved. And instead they will be condemned.

From a human perspective, the difference is our going into all the world to preach the gospel to them. The difference is their hearing and their believing. It's a matter of life and death. We must go.

Suppose that you worked in a laboratory, seeking to find a cure for cancer. Suppose that after years of research, after much trial and error, after much testing and refinement, you and your team of scientists found a cure for this wretched disease. What would you do? Certainly, you would go into the world and bring the cure to the many who are dying of cancer.

The same is true with the gospel. There are many in the world who are dying in their sins. We have the cure. We must go and bring the cure to them.

As the short rhyme goes, "Life is short. Death is sure. Sin is the cause. Christ is the cure."

The burden of my message this morning is this: We must go! Now, we don't have the cure for cancer. We have a far better cure. We don't have a cure that will extend one's life 5, 10, 50 years. We have a longer-lasting cure. We have the cure that will bring eternal healing.

Jesus said, "I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me will not hunger, and he who believes in Me will never thirst" (John 10:35). "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink" (John 7:37). "... whoever drinks of the water that I will give ... shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a water springing up to eternal life" (John 4:14). And, "I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies" (John 11:25). Jesus gives the bread that solves all hunger problems. Jesus gives the water that solves all thirsting problems. Jesus gives the life that solves all dying problems. Though we die, we will live forever more.

The world needs to hear these things that they might believe -- that they might have life. We must go.

This is what the entire book of Romans is about. Paul is writing to the Romans to obtains some financial help, so that he might be able to bring the gospel to Spain (Romans 15:24). At this point in history, I do not believe that the gospel had yet reached this remote location. And so, through His letter, he describes how necessary it is for preachers to go.

... if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. For the Scripture says, "Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed." For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; for "Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved."

How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher? How will they preach unless they are sent?
Just as it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news of good things!"

We Must Go (Verse 15). Are you willing to go?

Now, often, when we think about going, we think about going a long way away from home to those in far away places. Spain was such a place in Paul's heart and mind. Nobody had travelled beyond Spain. It was literally the end of the world to him.

As a church, we have focused a good deal of our missions efforts in Nepal. You can't get further away from here than Nepal. It's almost exactly half-way around the world. Literally, to us, it is the end of the world. We cannot go anyplace further than Nepal.

There is much need in Nepal. We have supported orphaned and abandoned children in Nepal. We have supported them both financially and by helping to build homes for them. We have strengthened the church in Nepal by helping them to build a building. You have sent me on five trips to Nepal to help with training indigenous pastors. I'm thankful that for the opportunity to be the feet that has brought the "good news of good things" (Rom. 10:15). Are you willing to go?

As elders, we have been praying for some sort of "next step" outreach plan. As you remember, we moved into this building about two years ago. We prayed for the Lord to give us an opportunity to reach out to the neighborhood surrounding this building. Phil, Darryn and I prayed much that the Lord would show us a way to reach out to the neighborhood.

As the Lord guided, we hosted a Vacation Bible School two summers ago. This gave us contact with some families in the neighborhood. This led to some outreaches on Monday evenings. Eventually, this led to our Kid's KLUB, after school program. It has been a great means to reach out to the neighborhood. We have a handful of children who have come to know much about the Bible. Many of the children have heard things that they never heard before. None of these kids had ever heard the gospel before being involved with Kid's KLUB.

Getting to know the kids has given an inroad to the parents. Some of them have been to church. We have had most of them into our home. I have been in their homes a bit. We have had had the opportunity to share the gospel with many of them. I have had some counseling opportunities: marriage counseling, parenting counseling. We have had the opportunity to extend Christ's love to them. Even this past week, one of the moms gave birth to a baby out of wedlock. Yvonne and I were able to visit her and pray for her and her new baby girl. We are fairly sure that she only had two visitors -- a good friend, and then us. We are praying that she (or others) might come to Christ.

And yet, because of the time (3pm, right after school), it's difficult (i.e. impossible) for many to be involved. Practically, I have been deeply involved. Some of you have been involved. I'm deeply grateful for the time you have given. But, we elders have been praying for God to give direction is some sort of outreach that might involve more of you.

We have come up with several ideas. We have toyed with the idea of a movie night, inviting the neighborhood to come and watch some movie for free here at the church building. We have toyed with the idea of a soccer camp, using our field to teach kids how to play soccer. We have toyed with the idea of hosting a large "get-to-know-you" dinner for the neighbors -- possibly a pig roast or something similar. We have toyed with the idea of providing the community an opportunity to join in a neighborhood garage sale. We are currently investigating what it would take to offer tutoring to students here at the church building throughout the school year.

Each of these options has its merits. Each of these options has some downsides. We may do some of these. We may not. If you have a heart that really wants to take something like this under your wings to organize and run with it, come and speak with us.

We are thinking and praying about some way to fulfill the great commission by going into our communities with the gospel. Pray for us. Pray for yourself. Pray about how the Lord might move us to reach out to those without Christ.

At some point, I remember Darryn mentioning a blog entry that helped give us some focus for this summer. This blog entry was written by a pastor of Sojourn Community Church in Louisville, Kentucky.

At Sojourn, we gather large on Sundays and small in community groups and in homes throughout the week. One of our community group coaches went to visit a community group a while back, and found this tendency at work.

It was a newer group at a campus that had recently launched, and the group members were eager to do something big and evangelistic. They wanted to coordinate a fall festival or cookout at the campus, inviting the neighborhood around the church to attend. The coach listened, nodding, and finally interrupted.

"These are all great ideas, but let me ask you something. What's the guy's name in the house next door?"

There was a long and awkward pause. Finally the group leader spoke up. "Uh, I'm not sure."

"How 'bout across the street?" the coach asked.

This time the leader knew a first name, but when pressed further, he didn't know the wife's name, the kids' names, or what the neighbor did for a living. The group had a big vision for reaching the "lost," but they didn't have affection for the people living just next door.

The coach, wisely, identified something all too common for us. We're happy to put together projects and throw big events at our churches. We're much more hesitant to befriend neighbors, share life with them, and be witnesses to grace in our ordinary, everyday interactions. [3]

The question might equally extend to you. Do you know your neighbors? Do you pray for your neighbors? Are you engaging your neighbors in life? Are you engaging your neighbors with the gospel?

Often when we think about going, we think about some far away, exotic place like Nepal. And people get really excited about going somewhere like that.

But, when confronted with your neighbors, suddenly the romance of missions is gone. Because, there is something really tangible about it that makes it difficult.

It's the very thing that makes raising children difficult. They see you as you really are. You cannot hide from your children. They know your sinful ways. They know of your lack of faith. Yet, you are calling them to a life of faith.

There is something different about speaking with your neighbor about spiritual matters, than there is about handing them a tract or handing out literature. Now, in no ways am I opposed to reaching out to people by handing out literature. Tom W is great at this. He far surpasses anyone that I know. I would encourage you to join him next Monday (April 22nd) when he plans to hand out tracts at the Coronado.

Tom writes, ...

A friend of mine and I are planning on doing an outreach on Monday, April 22nd at the Coronado in downtown Rockford. There is a medium/psychic television star performing. We did a similar show a couple of years ago and it was well attended. People took tracts and engaged us in a few conversations. The show starts at 7:30 so we would probably start around 6:30. Let me know if you are interested.

I want to fan that flame and encourage you to join with him. But, that's not the only way to reach out to those without Christ. In this day and age, there are many people who are entirely ignorant of the gospel. And some of them are living right next door. Oh, they see churches all around. But, they don't have anyone in their lives who knows and loves God.

This summer, we are going to make efforts to mobilize the church to reach out to your neighbors. I see four steps in the process.

1. Do you know the names of your neighbors?

Wherever we live, whether in a dorm room, an apartment, a condominium, a neighborhood, or in the country, we all have neighbors. Neighbors have names. One of the first steps in reaching out to those around you is to know their names.

2. Do you pray for your neighbors?

The salvation of any soul is a divine act. Are you praying for the Lord to work in the hearts of your neighbors? If you don't know their names, perhaps a good prayer to begin with is to pray for an opportunity to speak with them and ask them their names.

3. Engage them in some activity together.

This can be small, like having your widowed neighbor over for dinner some weeknight. It can be big, like having a large bar-b-que party in your backyard and inviting all of your neighbors. But, I want to encourage you to think about some type of way to get to know your neighbors.

4. Share the gospel with your neighbors.

This can start small with a gospel tract or with a short conversation or an invite to church. At some point, the conversation must go beyond the surface and into God's design in creation, man's sin, judgment and the redemption that Christ offers.

That's a simple, four-step plan to reach out to your neighbors. It's something that we want to encourage you to pray about and make some efforts to follow through.

Here we are in mid-April. I like to call it the "Coming Out Time". It's the time of year that everyone starts coming out if their houses. During the winter-time, people drive home, click their garage door opener, drive in their garage, close the garage door, and seek the warmth of indoors. I know we do this. You may go months without seeing your neighbor.

But, soon, as it gets warmer, everyone is outside. We recently had the first conversation with our neighbors next door in months. Over the next few months, many more will come.

As elders and leaders, we want to do what we can do to encourage you to make efforts at reaching out to your neighbors with the gospel. Think on this four-step plan.

1. Know them.
2. Pray for them.
3. Engage them in some activity.
4. Share the gospel with them.

In fact, we are going to have a target week this June where we will encourage everyone to make some sort of effort with those who live around you. It may be small. It may be large. And that next week, we'll have an opportunity on Sunday morning to share with our congregation what you did that previous week in your outreach to your neighbors.

I know that there is something about involving yourself with others in a process that is the very push that you need to get something done. For years, we have talked about having our neighbors over for dinner sometime. A really informal thing. A really easy thing.

Yet, in our 10 years together, we have never had them for dinner in our home. A few years ago, they beat us to it. They invited us to have dinner with them.

But, with a little push and with the encouragement that others are doing the same this summer, you may be inspired. It may well be the push that we need to be more pro-active in the lives of our other neighbors. We all need a little push sometimes.

Having said all of that, I know that your circumstances may make it difficult to reach out to your neighbors this summer. There may be some illness in your family. Maybe the dynamics of your neighborhood or the dynamics of your family make it difficult. That's OK, It really is.

I don't want you feeling guilty that you didn't engage your neighbors in some way or another. God knows what you can (and cannot do). At the very least, pray for your neighbors.

This sermon was delivered to Rock Valley Bible Church on April 14, 2013 by Steve Brandon.
For more information see www.rvbc.cc.

[1] MacArthur Study Bible

[2] Charles Spurgeon, "Baptismal Regeneration," sermon #573

[3] Daniel Montgomery and Mike Cosper, Faithmapping: A Gospel Atlas for Your Spiritual Journey (Wheaton, IL: Crossway, 2013), 183. http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/justintaylor/2013/02/06/do-you-know-your-neighbors-names/