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the Presbyterian Church of Coraopolis

To everyone who has faith or needs it, who lives in hope or would gladly do so, whose character is glorified by the love of God or marred by the love of self; to those who pray and those who do not, who mourn and are weary or who rejoice and are strong; to everyone, in the name of Him who was lifted up to draw all people unto Himself, this Church offers a door of entry and a place of worship, saying ‘Welcome Home’!


The latest Sermon from Reverend Tom

Truth From The Heart 9/24/2022

Sermon Message for Saturday, September 24, 2022 & Sunday, September 25, 2022 

Sermon Message: "Truth From the Heart"

by Reverend Patty Giles-Petrosky

Scripture Lessons: Psalm 15 & John 8:31-36 

Does Psalm 15 affect you like it affects me? Until I fully understood the grace and mercy of God – or at least as far as it is possible for a person to understand it – I figured there was no way I would ever live on God’s Holy Hill. I certainly am not blameless in any way, shape, or form. The truth is – not one of us is. 

It’s rather concerning to think about. But Scripture tells us that if we want to know how to live a Christian life, that God’s written word is a faithful director, and our conscience is a faithful monitor.  

I like the second half of Verse 2 – we are to speak the truth from our heart! What does that mean? If we’re speaking from our hearts, then our hearts had better be pure. After all, God knows our hearts better than we do – He knows what’s in there – and it had better be pure! 

I’d like to share a letter with you from a fellow named “Lucifer.” Lucifer has the ability to be very handsome and convincing. In fact, he and his minions are rather popular all around the world. Some refer to him as the prince of this world.  

Anyway, here’s the letter: 

Dear Constituents: 

I’ve written letters like this across hundreds of years and in many languages. I’m pleased to meet you this morning, even if we are in my enemy’s home. You may be a bit uneasy because we have the most influence when, like some government agencies, no one suspects that we exist. Or if they are aware of us, they don’t consider us very important. 

However, we have goals to achieve and hope to embed ourselves concretely into your lives. Our stock in trade is instant gratification and constant self-absorption. One thing we do not tolerate is being ignored. And we keep our cards close to our chest, so to speak. 

We are very careful to expose to you only that which is pleasing and exciting, and, as I stated, instantly gratifying. 

I am extremely careful that some information doesn’t get leaked, because I’ve seen what happens when the truth about secret things becomes public knowledge. I assure you, none of us wants that. So, none of you better go all holy on me, or I will have you for lunch – literally. 

Now, the heart of the matter is, I want to move into every area of your life. I want you to define yourself by logic – my logic. You see, I take all that is given to me and distort it. It’s not very difficult, because I realized long ago that most of you are so good at NOT being attentive to what is right in front of your eyes on Sunday mornings. 

I like to play with your desires – it’s truly one of the best instruments in my toolbox. It works like this, with a little encouragement from me; your desire becomes an inclination, which often becomes a habit; and those habits are hard to break. Desire is so deeply rooted in people’s souls, that it becomes their identity. And at that point, they belong to me. Think about it … vanity, greed, lust, envy, laziness … they all have earthly effects. Oh – resentment too! It’s like savoring a victory, especially when your most hated and feared enemy loses. Kind of like the relationship between the fans of the New York Yankees and the Boston Red Sox – it’s not enough for one’s own team to win, the other team must lose – how sweet the revenge! 

It might seem like small stuff to you, but we use every episode of your life and just keep building on it. The small things are so easy to distort. We can destroy your whole life by starting small – vanity, greed, lust, envy … you know those desires, right? Oh, and we feed the ego. That’s our playground. And we keep you so busy and involved in so many things that you have no time to attend to your soul. Man – we get you into all kinds of mischief! 

However, some folks cause me all kinds of grief. When the true consequences of your behavior are uncovered for what they are – self-deception on a level you never expected – you might actually (and I hate using this word) – repent! 

Such joy I get when I see individual lives ruined through betrayal or abuse. We actually celebrate where they end up! After all, violence is at the heart of our purpose. It’s one of the ways we manage the world - me and my minions, that is. And there is an infinite variety of forms that violence comes in. We never get bored! 

Well, enough said. I believe you get the gist of this letter. I can’t give away too many of my secrets and processes. Wouldn’t want you getting wise to me! 

Just sit back, think about my words, let the excitement stir you up. I have the world to offer you.  

Have no doubt, this isn’t the last you’ll be hearing from me.  

I remain sincerely yours, 

Lucifer 

 And Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, everyone who sins is a slave to sin … BUT, if you hold to my teachings, you are really My disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” 

The truth of Jesus Christ is indeed freedom – freedom from slavery to sin. It is spiritual freedom. Rely on His promises and obey His teachings, and we will find where our hope and strength are – the tools we need to withstand Satan’s (Lucifer’s) fiery arrows that take us into sin. Jesus clearly reminds all of us that when we are living a sinful life, we are slaves to that sin. 

Christ gives us freedom from living in sin. He has the power to give us freedom when we repent for our sins, and when we place our faith in Him. 

The next time you sense you’re receiving mail from Lucifer, just hand it over to Jesus. Dwell in His sanctuary, Live on His Holy Hill.  Walk blameless with Him. Do what is righteous. Speak truth from your heart.  And know that by doing these things, living your life this way, you will never be shaken. 

And to Him be all the glory, now and forever. Amen.