Author: Jimmy Seibert

Return to Radical: Global Sending Church


Today Jimmy Seibert wrapped up our Return to Radical: Being the Church in the 21st Century series with a message on how we can be the Church that changes the world. When the Church is in action, God is glorified. Take a look at some of our takeaways from today’s message:

  • When the Church is the Church, God is glorified
  • The word of God is the anchor for your soul
  • God’s initiative plus our response, equals our destiny
  • Everybody wants a miracle, but not everybody wants to be in a position to need a miracle
  • God is always at work, even in the midst of the struggle
  • When we do God things, God shows up
  • God’s grace is always available for anyone who turns His way
  • When there are troubled times, we are called to pray
  • Everybody needs a place to call home if you’re going to change the world

Return to Radical: Societal Transformation

Today Jimmy Seibert continued our series, Return to Radical: Being the Church in the 21st Century, with a message on allowing God to define who He is. When we get to know God on His terms and not on our own, we get deeper revelation of who He is. Because God’s character never changes, we always have solid ground to stand on.

Take a look at some of our takeaways from today’s message:

  • When we are trying to figure something out, the question should always be, “What does God say about it?”
  • You have to decide who you’re going to trust, you or God.
  • When you see the glory of God, you can’t help but declare the glory of God.
  • You have the highest value to God.
  • Because of who God is, there is solid ground beneath you, and there is always a place to stand.
  • When you have a man-centered worldview, you will never know where solid ground is.
  • The word of God rightly describes who He is.
  • Jesus is the doorway to everything we’re made for.
  • The desire and delight of God is to rescue people from their sin, not condemn people for their sin.
  • There is never hopelessness when the people of God are in action.

By Jimmy Seibert

 

 

A Letter from Jimmy:
Our Response to Hurricane Harvey

Dear Antioch Family,

As I write this letter our hearts are grieved for all our friends, loved ones and those we have never met in Houston and across Southeast Texas. The Antioch Houston church and leaders are doing an incredible job taking care of their own, loving their neighbors and have started helping with clean-up as they begin the restoration process. Additionally, for the last two days we have had teams from Waco and College Station with boats doing house-to-house rescues to help get people to safety.

In the midst of the devastation, there are several ways you can help those affected by Hurricane Harvey:

PRAY

  • For the rain to stop and stay away so the waters can subside and the restoration can begin
  • For no more loss of life and for everyone to be rescued
  • For full provision for all of our friends, family and Antioch Houston
  • For those helping to be great witnesses of Jesus’ love to their neighbors
  • For a revival to come on the heels of the devastation and for full restoration to happen physically and spiritually

 GIVE

  • Our goal is to raise $100,000 to fund our clean-up efforts as well as to support those affected by the flood through Acts of Mercy. If you would like to give, you can do so here. Be sure designate “Hurricane Harvey Relief.” You can also text to give by texting “ANTIOCH” to 444999, be sure to select “7” for Acts of Mercy.
  • If you would like to give directly to Antioch Houston’s flood relief efforts, you can do so here.
  • We have also identified several resources needed in order to be the most effective in our relief efforts. Please check this list to see the items we need. If you would like to donate, please bring your items to 2021 Fort Avenue, a grey house, by Friday at 5 p.m.

GO

Our relief team leader, Blake Hartsock, and his team are working directly with our Houston team to provide practical assistance:

We are looking for men and women who can help deconstruct drywall and carpet in houses, which have been flooded and need to be cleared before mold begins to spread. We are sending out teams this Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Teams will be formed based on people’s availability. If you are interested, please fill out this form.

We love you all. These historic moments give us opportunities to pray, love, give and go as the Holy Spirit leads. Be lifting up the people of Houston, that they may find the glory of God in the midst of the pain and challenges.

In His strength and love,

Jimmy Seibert

Return to Radical: Jesus is the Head of the Church

Today Jimmy Seibert continued our series, Return to Radical, by unpacking the question, “Who do you say Jesus is.?” The way we perceive Jesus will determine the course of our lives. When we are confident in who Jesus is, we are set to make it for the long haul. We also took a look at three ways Jesus reveals Himself in Scripture:

  • 1. Jesus is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords
  • 2. Jesus is our Salvation
  • 3. Jesus is the closest friend we could ever have
Take a look at some more takeaways from today’s message:
  • Wherever Jesus is ruling and reigning there is peace, righteousness, health and love.
  • You have to know who Jesus is to take on the challenges of this world.
  • If you are waiting around to be good enough to get to God, you’re never going to get out. You need Jesus to get out of the stuff you’re in.
  • No matter what happens in life, there is only one Savior and one place of refuge. His name is Jesus.
  • God answers the cries of our heart.
  • In your pain, run to Jesus and not from Jesus because He is the only one who can heal you.
  • Everybody wants to know Jesus they just don’t know it yet.
  • Jesus is the exact representation of God’s glory.
  • When you want to understand the heart of God, look at Jesus.
  • There is nothing but good for you in the heart of God.
  • We aren’t inviting you to a religion, we’re inviting you into a relationship.

By Jimmy Seibert

antioch, jimmy seibert

Return to Radical: The Church is God’s Plan A

Today Jimmy kicked off our new series, Return to Radical: Being the Church in the 21st Century. Throughout our series we will take a closer look at how we are called to live as the Church. We are not made for isolation, God set it up so that we could thrive in community. The Church is defined as the people of God. The Church is God’s plan A, and when we come together, we can change the world.

Check out some of our takeaways from today’s message:
  • You can’t keep saying “no,” and expect your life to change.
  • God restores us in the context of community, and then uses us to give community away.
  • The Church is a healing and restoring community that then reaches out, heals and restores.
  • God is not just about the individual, He is after a people.
  • He has not made us to be independent, He has made us to find wholeness with Him and be in relationship with others.
  • The heart of God is always blessing.
  • Who you say Jesus is will determine your life.
  • The DNA of the Church is based on Jesus, who is the rock that cannot be shaken.
  • When we are living with Jesus, for Jesus and in community, people see Jesus.
  • You’re made for Jesus, and you’re never going to be at peace until you find Him.
  • We have the promise that Jesus will build His Church, and the gates of hell will not prevail against it. (Matthew 16:18)

By Jimmy Seibert – Senior Pastor

antioch, jimmy seibert

To The Philippians: To Live is Christ // Week Nine

This week Jimmy wrapped up our series, To The Philippians, with a message on living in contentment. Be sure and dig deeper into the last chapter of this amazing book and unpack what it means to “be content whatever the circumstance.”

3 WAYS TO APPLY THIS WEEK’S MESSAGE:

  • 1. Be content in your relationship with God // Start every morning spending time with God and thanking Him for His provision in your life.
  • 2. Be content in your giving // Every time you sow into someone’s life, there is a reward for you in heaven.
  • 3. Be content in your relationships with others // If you’re feeling frustrated with the people around you, it may be you and not them. Check your heart and ask God to help you.

SCRIPTURE FOCUS: LIVING IN CONTENTMENT// Philippians 4:10-23

One of the primary reasons for Paul writing this book was to express gratitude for the Philippians’ generous financial gift. Paul concluded the book with this word of thanks, but also used the occasion as an opportunity to train them, and ultimately us, in maintaining a godly perspective toward finances by addressing the holy tension of being thankful, learning to live in contentment, giving generously to others, yet also being willing to express our own needs, and ultimately, to trust God entirely.

  • “I rejoiced greatly in the Lord … it was good of you to share in my troubles.” // First and foremost, Paul models thankfulness. 2 Corinthians 8:1-5 shows us that the Philippian church experienced deep poverty, or troubles, yet still freely gave to Paul at every opportunity. As we see in verses 15 and 16, at times they were the only church who gave. Church is about partnership together, not just in our abundance, but more often in our lack. We give time though we are busy; we give money though we are in need. This knits our hearts together and should always be expressed in deep gratitude.
  • “I have learned to be content whatever the circumstance.” // Paul was thankful for the abundant gift, but he was also content in his need. At times he had plenty and at times he was hungry, but he was always content. This was a trait that Paul had to learn. None of us are born content; instead, we have to learn to find contentment in the person of Jesus – not the things of this world. The implication of this verse is that at times we will be hard pressed financially. This is not a sign that God has abandoned us. Instead, it is an opportunity to press into Jesus in a new way and find His strength.
    • We live in a materialistic culture. The American church today much more closely resembles the Corinthian church than it does the Philippian church. We can easily fall into the materialism of our culture if we aren’t careful – the entire advertising industry exists for the purpose of making us discontent. We need to follow Paul’s example and strive to learn the secret of contentment.
  • “What I desire is that more may be credited to your account.” // Paul ends by reminding the Philippians that the purpose of giving is not for his sake, but for theirs. He was taken care of, he had more than enough, but by giving they were able to experience the grace of God in a fresh way. There is a heavenly reward as we give, illustrated by this picture of a heavenly investment account that builds as we sacrificially give on earth.

Giving aligns our heart. God doesn’t need our money. He can provide the money that His servants need, with or without us. We are the ones who need to give for our own sake. As we do so, His promise is to meet our needs according to His riches. The best earthly investment holds no comparison to what is offered here – an eternal investment, guaranteed by the King of all creation.

In Matthew 6:21, we read the words of Jesus, reminding us that, “where our treasure is, there our heart will be also.” In Matthew 6:33, He challenged us, “to seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well.” God is after our heart, and He uses our finances to get there.

Contentment is an expression of faith.

When we live for Jesus and we trust God entirely, Paul’s example becomes normal. But when we live according to the greed and materialism in the world we will always be pulled a different direction. Paul shared his example to provide us an opportunity to realign our hearts, and this is something I believe we need more urgently now than the original audience of this letter ever did.

CONCLUSION (4:20-23)

In the end, all of this boils down to these last few verses: Glorifying God (verse 20), loving one another as brothers and sisters (verses 21-22) and experiencing the grace of God (verse 23). Let’s resolve to follow the examples of godly men and women before us. Let’s resolve to love one another with the sacrificial love of Jesus, to press into the grace of God that works within us and choose to then work out the fullness of our salvation. Finally, let’s resolve, once and for all, that for us To Live is Christ.

By Jimmy Seibert

To The Philippians: To Live is Christ // Week Seven

This week Jimmy continued our series, To The Philippians, with a message on living for heaven and not this world. When we live with a heavenly perspective, we know Jesus more and we are free to love people.

3 WAYS TO APPLY THIS WEEK’S MESSAGE:

This week, pick a passage from the Bible and answer these three questions. If you aren’t already reading a specific book, start in the Gospels.

  • 1. Know // After reading the passage, ask yourself what you now know about Jesus that you didn’t know before.
  • 2. Be // Based on what you now know about Jesus, how do you want to be more like Him?
  • 3. Do // What are the action steps you will take?

DIGGING DEEPER:

SCRIPTURE FOCUS: LIVING FOR HEAVEN // Philippians 3:12 – 4:1

LIVING FOR HEAVEN (3:12-4:1)

Paul beautifully outlined the fundamental truths of our faith in the previous verses. It’s the anchoring truth we acknowledge, but we also often live discouraged because our real world does not come into alignment. We know Christ died for us, we know the Spirit is transforming us, we know we are made for relationship with Jesus – so why do we seem to stay stuck in our old way of living?

PRESS ON (3:12-14)

Verse 12 acknowledges this tension, “Not that I’ve already attained all this…but I press on.” He repeats this in verse 14, “I press on toward the goal to win the prize.” The fact that we still struggle does not invalidate the truth of the preceding verses. Paul struggled to live out his faith, just like we do; however, he pressed on. He didn’t give up when things we difficult. He didn’t try to justify his failures by somehow saying it was God’s fault or that His Word was insufficient. No, instead, he pressed on.

We can take hold of it – a fully alive relationship with Jesus – because Jesus has already taken hold of us. We work because He worked. We take hold, because He already took hold. On the one hand, it’s going to be effort, hard work and endurance on our part, but it’s only possible because He already did His part.

TWO CONCRETE STEPS ARE GIVEN IN TEACHING US HOW TO PRESS ON:

  • 1. Forgetting what is behind // When our focus is on ourselves, we become past-focused. Our past successes become a place of boasting which causes pride. Our past failures become a place of shame which immobilizes. To truly live a Jesus-centered life, we need to lift our eyes off our past and put them on Jesus.
  • 2. Straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize //  Our spiritual walk is compared to a race (see 2 Timothy 2:5, 2 Timothy 4:7, Hebrews 12:1-2). Races require endurance and exertion, or straining. We need to let go of the past, and then we need to put on our running shoes and pursue Jesus.

These verses are very equalizing. Rather than presenting himself as a superhuman, Paul is showing that he struggled, just like we do, and that provides an example for us to follow.

PAUL’S EXAMPLE: LIVE FOR HEAVEN (3:15-4:1)

Spiritual maturity is rooted in our ability to understand that our sins are forgiven in Jesus through faith, that we are given power by His Spirit, and that we have a responsibility to “press on” and “work it out.” This is fundamental theology. And it’s also something we will spend a lifetime trying to learn. In the meantime, let’s trust God to reveal this to us in greater ways (verse 15), and let’s live up to what we already know (verse 16).

A predominate theme of the book of Philippians is the charge to follow Godly examples. We have Paul as an example, Timothy as an example, Epaphroditus as an example and ultimately Jesus Himself as our Chief Example. This point is driven home in verses 17-21. Human examples are given to us so we can follow them. And it didn’t stop two thousand years ago, we are invited to follow the examples of other people who live this way.

This is an important point for us in our spiritual growth. Yes, we need to think rightly (3:15) but we also need help to live rightly (3:16), and we learn to do this is by following right examples. Community is critical for discipleship; in fact, I don’t believe the two can be separated.

The difficulty is that most people don’t live this way; they are not examples to follow. As a result, most of us spend most of our time interacting with examples of what not to do. We face a constant tug in the wrong direction as we run our race. We need spiritual discernment and deep anchoring in the truth to stay focused in the right direction. We love those around us, but we cannot follow them.

Verse 18 is deeply emotional, a father pleading in tears with his children. We need to pay close attention to not follow the example of the world; it is an enemy of the cross and its destiny is destruction. The path of the world is broad and easy to follow, but the way of Jesus is narrow (Matthew 7:12-14).

PAUL LISTED OUT SEVERAL WARNING SIGNS THAT WE ARE FOLLOWING THE WRONG EXAMPLES:

  • 1. Their god is their stomach // Any philosophy or worldview that is primarily centered on self-gratification is going to lead to destruction. This perspective puts the appetites of man at the center, whether food or lust or money. Modern philosophy teaches us to pursue our natural instincts and that happiness is found in fulfilling our fleshly desires. But this only leads to death; Jesus calls us to die to ourselves and find life in Him (Matthew 16:24-26).
  • 2. Their glory is their shame // What the world exalts is the opposite of what God exalts. We boast in our own achievement. Instead, this is actually our shame – rubbish even. When our identity is found in ourselves and our accomplishments, then we miss out entirely on the chance to have true confidence. We can mask the insecurity inherent in our sinful nature, or we can instead let Jesus stamp a new identity upon us and find a genuine confidence that comes from Him.
  • 3. Their mind is set on earthly things // Ultimately, this is essence of the problem. Humanism and any other man-centered philosophy is rooted in finding fulfillment in this life. This can be altruistic or this can be entirely material, but either way it is all about self. Before blindly following the philosophy of this world, we need to ask ourselves: Does this make sense in light of heaven?

We counteract this trend toward willingness by fulling embrace verse 20, “But our citizenship is in heaven.” This revolutionizes our perspective; it transforms our way of living. It is the secret to Paul’s lifestyle. His life, and all the other examples listed, does not make sense if he only lived for this life, but it’s perfectly logical if he truly lived for Heaven.

Why pursue the appetite of our stomach for a short while if we have an eternity of satisfaction awaiting us? Why divide the church over our own selfish desires if we will one day be fully united in Christ? Why avoid suffering for the sake of Jesus if we will receive honor with Him forever? It all makes sense in light of heaven. And none of it makes sense if we follow the example of this world. This is the key point: To live is Christ and to die is gain, and this is made possible because we:

Eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables Him to bring everything under His control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like His glorious body – Philippians 3:20.

By Jimmy Seibert – Senior Pastor

A Letter from Jimmy – Making the Most of Your Summer

Dear Antioch Family,

Summer is a great opportunity to be refreshed, renewed and to move forward in our personal lives and in the Kingdom of God not only as a family, but also as a church.

Through the years Laura and I have realized that every great family not only has great intentions but takes time to make plans for what matters most. For us, we use a tool called Roles and Goals. We take time personally, and as a family, to evaluate where we are currently and where we feel God wants to take us over the summer in six key areas:

  • Spiritually
  • Mentally
  • Family
  • Financially
  • Relationally
  • Physically

I encourage you and your family to set aside time to fill out your own Roles and Goals sheet for the summer.

The second part of having a great summer is antiochcc.tv!

During the summer the schedules change, kids are out of school and we go on vacations or travel. What is exciting for us as the Antioch family is that wherever you go you can still do church! You can stream our 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. services at antiochcc.tv wherever you are and enter into the service with us. So whether you are overseas or having a “staycation” as a family, you can track with our Philippians series all summer long.

Psalm 90:12 “So teach us to number our days, that we may present to You a heart of wisdom.”

Ephesians 5:15-17  “Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil.  So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is.”

I also suggest diving into a book this summer. I’m reading through Purpose Driven Life with my boys right now, and I highly recommend it! Some other suggestions are:

Have a great summer, Antioch!

In His strength,

Jimmy Seibert, Senior Pastor

Responding to Jesus

Dear Antioch Family,

Wow, last week was incredible as we celebrated Jesus – His death, burial and resurrection. On Thursday night we had a sweet and powerful time together at our Communion Service. On Good Friday we had the Stations of the Cross in our Prayer Room where young and old, families and individuals came to remember the journey Jesus took on our behalf.

On Easter Sunday we had more 5,000 men, women and children gather to not only celebrate Jesus, but to respond to the invitation to believe in Him, receive from Him and belong to Him. We won’t know the full impact of the weekend until Eternity, but we do know that more than 100 people responded to the Gospel and committed in their hearts to follow Jesus!

We also know that hundreds of others were ministered to, strengthened, built up, touched and healed by God’s great grace. Thank you to all that volunteered, thank you to all who were a part of the journey. The greatest thing about Easter, for us as believers, is that it can be lived out every day of our lives. Because of the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus, we are His sons and daughters, alive with full access to His Spirit and His grace.

If you know people who have recently given their lives to Jesus, I encourage you to invite them to church again this Sunday. I will be teaching on “The Three Baptisms” and talking about what it means to live a new life in Jesus, to be baptized in water and to be filled with the Spirit. On Sunday, April 30th we’ll have our annual Baptism Bash where we will spend the entire service worshipping and baptizing people who have just come to know Jesus and those who have believed but have never followed through with water baptism. I want to encourage you to jump in the river with us, whether that is figuratively or literally, as we look forward to our Baptism Bash 2017!

If you or anyone you know is interested in getting baptized on the 30th, please sign up at antio.ch/baptismbash17.

Looking forward to a great Sunday with you!

In His strength and love,

Jimmy

A Letter From Jimmy: 21 Days of Asking

In Sunday’s sermon I shared a story from when I was in junior high about my friends and me throwing water balloons at cars driving by. Eventually a car stopped and some teenagers got out and started to chase us. It was midnight and we ran to a nearby house of a family we knew and banged on the door until they let us in. We were desperate and screaming for the dad, who we called Dr. B, to open the door, and he graciously let us in. Of course we told him a little white lie and said that the teenagers were chasing us for no reason. He immediately went outside and told them to leave or he was going to call the police.

I use that story as an illustration of desperation.

We knocked and kept knocking, we screamed and yelled until Dr. B opened the door because we knew he had everything we needed. He had a refuge for us, he had authority as an adult and he had a warm, safe home from the dangers on the outside. Even though we didn’t deserve it, he opened the door.

In Luke 11, Jesus is teaching His disciples how to pray and He tells them a similar story about a man who had a need and his friend opened the door to him, not because the friend wanted to but because of the man’s persistence. This is the invitation of the Lord. We are welcome to come and petition and request from Him the needs of our heart and the needs of our life.  So, I have set up an acrostic to challenge all of us to boldly and persistently pray and ask God for our needs over the next 21 days. Here is the acrostic from Luke 11:9-10:

A-Ask and keep asking.

We come with our desires and our needs. While we are asking for our desires and our needs, we are also asking, “Jesus, please show me Your will. Show me Your heart and show me Your desire so I can pray according to Your will.” We’re asking Him to show us the right questions, insight or counsel that we might need in order to pray adequately. To not ask is to leave out the opportunity for God to move.

S-Seek and keep seeking.

Whenever God says we are to seek Him throughout Scripture, it is usually related to seeking His face and not just His hand. In our prayers we are to be seeking the person of God and the character of God.  Psalm 16 is a great Scripture on God’s character to meditate on. If we know who He is and we are seeking His face our relationship with Him grows and our faith and trust in Him develops, even if our prayers are not answered immediately.

K- Knock and keep knocking.

This means you are getting in line every day. For me it would be something like, “Lord, it is Jimmy again. I’m coming again with this need. I’m not going to stop coming, Lord, until I hear Your voice and know Your heart on the situation.” This knocking is also a place to take our anxiety. “Lord, I am anxious about this or I’m worrying about that, I don’t know how it’s going to turn out.”  Instead of worrying, pray. You are to knock and keep knocking, believing He will lead you.

I want to encourage you to use the simple ASK acrostic as a pattern of prayer over the next 21 days and to watch God move.

At the end of the 21 days, we will have a three-day prayer and fast to cap off our prayer series. It will be an incredible journey together to be who God has called us to be: people of power and prayer.

In His strength and love,

Jimmy