Sermons by Rev. Dr. Larry Maley

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Sola Fide: Faith Alone

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Sermon delivered by Rev. Dr. Larry Maley at Dardenne Presbyterian Church on October 1, 2017

“Sola Fide: Faith Alone”

Second of five sermons on the Reformation’s Principles

Scriptures: Ephesians 2:8-10 and Romans 3:23-28

            Upon engaging a young man in a conversation about salvation, I asked whether or not he would go to Heaven. He replied that he hoped so, but did not know for sure. “Then how can a person know whether or not they are saved,” I inquired.

            “I suppose, you just have to be good,” he replied.

            “How good do you have to be?” I asked.

“Awful good,” he answered.

Probing deeper I asked, “So, are you that good?” He admitted that he was not. “Then I suppose you are not saved,” I responded. He reluctantly admitted he was not. I let him know I shared his moral dilemma about not being good enough. I will never forget how his jaw dropped and the words stumbled out of his mouth, “Well, if you’re the preacher and you are not good enough, then, who can be saved?” What a joy it was to tell him of God’s plan of salvation through faith in Jesus Christ. Salvation is only received by faith in Christ Jesus (Romans 3:24-25).

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Sola Christus: Christ Alone

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Sermon delivered by Rev. Dr. Larry Maley at Dardenne Presbyterian Church on September 24, 2017

“Sola Christus: Christ Alone”

First of five sermons on the Reformation’s Principles

Scriptures: Hebrews 10:4-14 and Isaiah 64:5-9

            On October 31, 1517, a thirty-three year old monk named Martin Luther, climbed the steps of a church in Wittenberg, Germany and nailed a list of 95 Theses on the door. Out of that act emerged an historical movement known as the Protestant Reformation. The monk did not create any new truths. Rather, he rediscovered some Biblical truths that had been lost by the Church for a long time. Because our sermons for five weeks will focus on the Five Principles of the Reformation, someone will surely ask, “Why are we commemorating an event which occurred 500 years ago?” History scholars will remind us that the Reformation was one of the most influential events in world history and in the Christian Church. We will also recognize that the historical, social, theological and political motivations which prompted the Reformation are similar to the challenges the world faces today.

Our five sermons on the Reformation will not focus on one or two men, Martin Luther and John Calvin. Instead, we will consider the Reformer’s rediscovery of the central message of the Gospel; insistence on the authority of God’s Word; and the majestic emphasis on God’s Grace. During these five sermons, I pray you will come away with an understanding of the Reformation’s primary concern about the relationship between a holy God and sinful people. It is a theme which theologians call, “justification by faith in Jesus Christ.”

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Lord, Teach Us To Pray

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Sermon delivered by Rev. Dr. Larry Maley at Dardenne Presbyterian Church on September 10, 2017

“Lord, Teach Us To Pray”

Scriptures: Daniel 9:4-17

The Power of Unity

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Sermon delivered by Rev. Dr. Larry Maley at Dardenne Presbyterian Church on August 13, 2017

“The Power of Unity”

Scriptures: John 17:13-23 and Ecclesiastes 4:9-12

            In one of Aesop’s fables, he describes an old man whose several sons were constantly feuding with each other. The father had often exhorted them to live in harmony – with no success. One day he called them together and showed them a bundle of sticks tied together by a cord. He invited each son to break the bundle. Each one tried as hard as he could, but none could break the bundle of sticks.

Then the father cut the cord and told his sons to break them separately. This was accomplished with the greatest of ease. “See my sons, the power of unity” the old father said. “Bound together by brotherly love, you may defy almost every mortal danger. But divided, you will fall prey to your enemies.”

The writer of Ecclesiastes makes the same point in simpler words, “A cord of three strands is not quickly broken” (4:12).

            One of the things of crucial importance to God is the unity of Christ’s Church. There may be times when God would have us move on, take our gifts, abilities and energy and use them to serve […]

Faith Is Not a Destination, But a Journey

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Sermon delivered by Rev. Dr. Larry Maley at Dardenne Presbyterian Church on August 6, 2017

“Faith Is Not a Destination, But a Journey”

Scriptures: 2 Peter 1:5-11 and Acts 2:42-47

Committing oneself to Jesus Christ for the original Christians was not a destination; it was the beginning of a difficult journey. And that emphasis on the Christian life as a steadfast journey has been lost by many modern believers in America.

Today, too much emphasis is placed upon the initial decision to believe. At a particular moment a potential Christian makes a “decision” to trust, or put their faith in Christ. In our eagerness to make converts, we allow our hearers to absorb the idea that they will be complete and responsible Christians through a once and for all decision to believe in Christ. After making one’s initial “decision” to believe, the impression is given that maturing as a Christian is automatic. After declaring your faith, […]

See Yourself In the Mirror

Sermon delivered by Rev. Dr. Larry Maley at Dardenne Presbyterian Church on July 23, 2017

“See Yourself In the Mirror”

Scriptures:   Matthew 7:1-5 and 1 Corinthians 13:8-13

After being away on a business trip for two weeks, a husband thought it would be considerate to bring a gift for his wife. He stopped at a local perfumery and asked the cosmetic clerk for some nice perfume. She showed him a bottle costing $95.00.

“That’s a bit too much. Do you have something less expensive?” She presented him another fragrance costing $70.00.

“That’s still quite expensive,” he intoned. So the clerk showed him a smaller size bottle for $45.00. He declined that bottle, as well.

Growing annoyed, the clerk brought out a tiny bottle costing only $30.00.

“You know,” the husband said, “I want something… really cheap.”

The cosmetic clerk handed him… a mirror!

Today, I encourage you to take a long hard look in the mirror. When you examine your reflection today, go deeper than your external image, or beyond what others may perceive you to be. Look at yourself from the perspective of God’s Word.

Our Scripture lesson from 1 Corinthians 13 tells us, “now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face” (v.12). Paul’s analogy of the imperfect image we see in a mirror illustrates our imperfect knowledge on this side of Eternity. To appreciate this imagery we must understand that when Paul wrote […]

Sibling Sins: Leah and Rachel

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Sermon delivered by Rev. Dr. Larry Maley at Dardenne Presbyterian Church on July 2, 2017

“Sibling Sins: Leah and Rachel”

Fifth of five sermons from Genesis on ‘How sin destroys the family’

Scriptures: Genesis 29:16-32

        

Sibling Sins: Joseph and His Brothers

Sermon delivered by Rev. Dr. Larry Maley at Dardenne Presbyterian Church on June 25, 2017

“Sibling Sins: Joseph and His Brothers”

Fourth of 5 sermons from Genesis on ‘How sin destroys the family’

Scriptures: Genesis 45:1-15 and Philippians 2:5-11 

          It is not an exaggeration to say that ‘relationships’ are the most important thing in life. Jesus said that the two greatest commandments have to do with right relationships – first with God and then toward one another (Matt. 22:37-39). Whenever you see broken relationships toward God, in a family, or in the church, you know that God is not pleased. God is in the business of reconciling broken relationships.

As evidence of God’s purpose of bringing reconciliation, there may be nothing so moving as witnessing a fractured family being reconciled and reunited. That explains why Genesis 45 is such a passionate chapter. Readers are given the privilege …