11/6/16 “A COWARD HAS NO POWER” – Pastor Shane Idleman

If you want to stay up on the latest audio messages from Westside Christian Fellowship, don’t forget to subscribe to this podcast on iTunes.

Complete Sermon Notes

A Coward Has No Power

OPENING PRAYER – Tuesday election – sorrow can produce action [fast].

Benjamin Franklin – “If a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without his notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid?

  • Monday’s prayer Focus – a new president by the time we meet again.


INTRO: A Coward Has No [spiritual] Power – the connection has been lost.

  • The church is looking for better methods – God is looking for better men.

Peter and John Arrested

ACTS 4 Now as they spoke to the people, the priests, the captain of the temple, and the Sadducees came upon them, 2 being greatly disturbed that they taught the people and preached in Jesus the resurrection from the dead. 3 And they laid hands on them, and put them in custody until the next day, for it was already evening. 4 However, many of those who heard the word believed; and the number of the men came to be about five thousand.

  • Sadducees – no resurrection.

  • Church growth model – “heard the word”: unadulterated, untarnished – REPENT AND BELIEVE was the main message – preached in Jesus the resurrection from the dead.

This begs the question to churches, “Does the world love the way we ‘do church’?” Do they appreciate that we never challenge, or calls things into question? Do they like the fact that we never make people feel uncomfortable or offended? If so, you may want to reconsider Jesus’ words that true disciples will be hated by the world.

Obviously, churches should be welcoming, loving, accepting, friendly, warm, hospitable places of worship. But please don’t misunderstand: they should also challenge, contend, exhort, reprove, and admonish from the pulpit—this, the world will hate.

“I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”

  • Deut. 31:11 when all Israel comes to appear before the Lord your God in the place which He chooses, you shall read this law before all Israel in their hearing. 12 Gather the people together, men and women and little ones, and the stranger who is within your gates, that they may hear and that they may learn to fear the Lord your God and carefully observe all the words of this law, 13 and that their children, who have not known it, may hear and learn to fear the Lord your God as long as you live in the land which you cross the Jordan to possess.”

1. * A coward avoids the difficult truths – someone filled with the Spirit must declare them.

Addressing the Sanhedrin – 5 And it came to pass, on the next day, that their rulers, elders, and scribes, 6 as well as Annas the high priest, Caiaphas, John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the family of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem. 7 And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, “By what power or by what name have you done this?”

  • Annas and Caiaphas were both High Priests – Annas was the first.

  • They were hoping for a different answer – When God moves, people often look for another answer.

A genuine revival is always criticized – “spiritual” people are offended that God is moving without them.

2. * A coward makes excuses – someone filled with the Spirit does not.

8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders of Israel: 9 If we this day are judged for a good deed done to a helpless man, by what means he has been made well, 10 let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole. 11 This is the ‘stone which was rejected by you builders, which has become the chief cornerstone.’ 12 Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”

  • Without the Spirit, Peter would have been apologetic.

3. * A coward apologizes – someone filled with the Spirit reinforces.

The 5 Problems with Pastor’s Today or 5 Things Pastors Need to Stop Doing: http://barbwire.com/2016/11/04/%E2%80%8Bthe-5-problems-pastors-today/

1. Stop watering down the gospel.

2. Stop focusing only on encouragement.

3. Stop getting your message from pop-psychology or the latest fad.

4. Stop trying to be like the world.

5. Stop asking, “Will this topic offend my audience?” and start asking, “Will my silence offend God?”

Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit – God Strengthens By Indwelling.

  • Shot-gun analogy

The Name of Jesus Forbidden – 13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. And they realized that they had been with Jesus. 14 And seeing the man who had been healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it.

  • A Degree from the Master is far more valuable that a Master’s Degree.

4. * A coward is timid – someone filled with the Spirit is bold


Looking at everything we’ve just read – * A coward runs and remains silent, but …

  • Sitting in the pew listening does not move the hand of God –

We need intercessors – Daniel 9:5, “We have sinned and done wrong. We have been wicked and have rebelled; we have turned away from your commands and laws.” Nehemiah – “Why should i not be sad?”

Isaiah 62:6-7 On your walls, O Jerusalem, I have appointed watchmen; All day and all night they will never keep silent…

Jeremiah 29:7 Seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the LORD on its behalf; for in its welfare you will have welfare.

Our children need us – our grandchildren need us –

  1. Identification – Christ identified with us.

  2. Authority – Ezekiel – “And I sought for a man from among them…”

  3. Agony – I am crucified with Christ – I have a burning desire and the Holy Spirit works thru me.

Identify and have Agony for Kayla who was taken from a prayer meeting on Tuesday in Texas –


A] * Where are the Peters and Pauls who spoke with such authority that martyrdom did not silence them? * Where are the Isaiahs and Jeremiahs calling nations to repentance? Though they are dead, they still speak!

B] * Where are the Tyndales and Huss’ who were burned at the stake for simply declaring the truth? * Where are the John Knoxs who cried, “Give me Scotland [for the cause of Christ] or I die”?

I say again, “Where are they?” Where are the John Wesleys who said, “Give me one hundred people who fear nothing but sin and desire nothing but God, and we will shake the gates of hell?”

Where are the Puritans like Richard Baxter who said, “I speak as a dying man to dying men”?