Archive for Sermons


Live Stream @ FBCDSM

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For the past year, the Tech Team at First Baptist Church has been working to develop a live video stream of our Sunday Morning Worship services. Through the dedicated work of these talented members, we are up and running!

The full worship service streams live each week beginning at 10:00 am. Following the live stream, the sermon videos are archived on our website to allow people to watch them at their convenience. The production quality is in high definition, making the viewing experience comfortable and enjoyable.

We made this investment for several reasons. First, we wanted our services to be accessible to people who cannot be present with us in person. From people who are traveling to those who are home bound, we have discovered that the live stream provides the viewer with a sense of community, albeit virtual. Another reason we made this step was to provide people who are exploring faith or looking for a church home a safe and anonymous experience prior to taking the step to worship with us in person. Finally, we wanted to provide support to small communities of faith that are either without a pastor or who can no longer afford a pastor. As we move forward, I’m sure there will be many other reasons that we’ll discover.

I’d like to invite you to check it out. You can find the live stream, the archived video, and yes, even the archived audio only sermons at There you will find the links and clear instructions on how to engage.

My prayer is that God will use our new ministry for his Glory. And, we’re thankful to Him for the technology that makes it possible!

Categories : Sermons, Worship
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Who’s the G.O.A.T.?

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Sports has brought us an interesting new acronymn: G.O.A.T., which stands for Greatest Of All Time. As Americans, we’re interested in such debate.

For instance, what is the greatest television show of all time? Certainly we have our prejudices, but if you base the question on the longest running broadcast, the answer would be The Simpsons, which has aired for 28 seasons. If you base it on the most episodes ever, then the answer would be Gunsmoke, which aired 635 separate shows.

What is the greatest movie of all time? Again, we have our favorites. But if you look to the box office, the movie Avatar would be number one, grossing $2.7 billion including international ticket sales. If you don’t like that metric, you can choose one of three movies, each of which earned eleven Academy Awards: Ben Hur, Titanic, and the Lord of the Rings.

Can you guess the greatest Rock band of all time? Total record sales would indicate the Beatles are the G.O.A.T., amassing sales topping 271 million records. But if you base the question on Grammy Awards, you would have to tip your hat to the band U2’s 22 trophies.

We tend to measure greatness in terms of longest, biggest, best or most. But Jesus defined it in other terms. When asked about what constitutes greatness, Jesus picked up a child from the listener’s midst and began to teach. (Matthew 18:1-14)

Jesus used a child to illustrate greatness in the kingdom. It wasn’t because children are pure or innocent. Its because children in Jesus’ day had no status or significance. They were completely dependent upon adults. While the text contains certain applications to children and children’s ministry, children in this instance are a metaphor for the values of discipleship. Faithful disciples of Jesus are, by nature, vulnerable, powerless and dependent. Our path to Kingdom greatness is paved with such genuine humility.

In light of this truth, we need to be careful with how we estimate our spiritual progress and the progress of our fellow disciples. Are we self reliant or God reliant? Are we powerful or powerless? Do we walk in pride or in humility? Are we great by human standards or by the standard that God has set forth?

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Jars of Clay

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On Sunday I will begin a new sermon series titled, “Jars of Clay.” The goal of this series is to demonstrate how God uses our weakness as a platform to display his surpassing power. For example,

Moses said, “I am afraid.”
Deborah said, “I am unqualified.”
Gideon said, “I am uncertain.”
Samson said, “I am self reliant.”
Nehemiah said, “This is hard.”
David said, “I am inexperienced.”
Jonah said, “I don’t understand.”
Paul said, “I am weak.”

In the lives of familiar characters and stories, we’ll discover how God enables us to serve in the midst of the cracks and imperfections of our lives. I hope you’ll check in from week to week and find encouragement to let the treasure of Jesus shine through your jar of clay.

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Greatest. Sermon. Ever

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SERMONN.jpg Pete Cornell

Who is a good person? How does someone learn to become a good person? These were the kind of questions Jesus addressed in The Sermon on the Mount. This weekend in worship I’m beginning a new series out of the Gospel of Matthew based on this epic text. Check out the artwork for the series provided by our very own Pete Cornell.

Categories : Preaching, Sermons
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New Sermon Series

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This Sunday I will begin a new five week sermon series titled, “Contentment.” Here are the titles:

“The Man Who Needed Nothing” (John 4:31-34)
“The Problem with Contentment” (Exodus 20:17)
“The Pathway to Contentment” (Philippians 4:10-14)
“The Profit of Contentment” (1 Timothy 6:3-10)
“The Profession of Contentment” (Hebrews 13:5-6)

If you’re in Des Moines, join us for worship. If you’re not in Des Moines or participate in another church, feel free to listen to my weekly podcasts at

Categories : Preaching, Sermons
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New Sermon Series: iBelieve

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“The disciples saw Jesus do many other miraculous signs in addition to the ones recorded in this book. But these are written so that you may continue to believed that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing in him you will have life by the power of his name” (John 20:30-31, NLT).

The Gospel of John contains seven miracles, called signs. According to John, each of these miracles served a dual purpose: to reveal Jesus as the Son of God and to foster faith that results in life. Each miracle addresses a specific need that robs us of life. But rather than face our circumstances with passive resignation, we can make a different choice. We can choose to believe, even in the face of impossible odds. It’s our belief, not our courage, that produces life!

Beginning August 28 I’m going to do a seven week series that will show how Jesus confronted seven specific threats that rob people like us of life and how He demonstrated the pathway to life in the midst of those challenges.

August 28: Disappointment (John 2:1-11)
September 4: Helplessness (John 4:46-54)
September 11: Habitual Patterns of Sin (John 5:1-15)
September 18: Inadequacy (John 6:1-15)
September 25: Fear (John 6:16-21)
October 2: Lack of Direction (John 9:1-12)
October 9: Death (John 11:1-44)

If you’re in the Des Moines area, I’d like to invite you to visit us at Ashworth Road. You can find our location and service times by visiting our website by finding If you’re not local, stay tuned to my blog. I’ll be posting follow ups to each weekend service. I think you’ll be encouraged and challenged by this series, and most important of all, find life!

Categories : Jesus, John, Life, Sermons
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New Sermon Series

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This weekend I’ll begin a new series on the Kingdom Parables of Matthew 13. The series is titled “Right Now.” I’ll be blogging in the upcoming weeks about the series or you can listen to the podcasts online at

Categories : Kingdom of God, Sermons
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