Archive for the ‘Sermon Manuscripts’ Category

July 27, 2014 “When Life Runs Out”

Sunday, July 27th, 2014


Two thousand years ago for the first time the God-Man Jesus Christ set His feet on Planet Earth. For the first 30 years Jesus led a rather hidden life with His earthly mother and father, Mary and Joseph. But then the day came when His public ministry as the Messiah began. First He was baptized by John the Baptist, then later Jesus chose at a plain, ordinary wedding to so something He had never done before … He performed a miracle. We read about it in John 2, so open your Bibles to that passage. Today I’m beginning a new series of messages where we will study seven miracles that Jesus performed during His earthly ministry and that were specifically recorded in John’s Gospel for a purpose. And in John 2 we read about the first of these miracles. Read John 2:1-11. (more…)


June 15, 2014 “Where’s Your Happy Place?”

Tuesday, June 17th, 2014


Happy Father’s Day! Men, I’m grateful to the Lord that you are here today. If you are a husband or a dad, having your family in church with you is so important in living and leaving a legacy. And for the ladies, Father’s Day is also known as “National Elbow Your Husband in the Ribs During the Sermon Day.” Hopefully that won’t be the case today, but rather that the Holy Spirit might elbow all of us in the ribs today. And when He does that He often uses the Word of God. So let’s open our Bibles to Esther 5.

If you’re just joining us today, the book of Esther is about a period in history, 400-500 years before Christ was born, when Jews living in the ancient Persian Empire woke up one day to the news that a law had been passed that they would all be killed. A young Jewish woman named Esther has become the queen of Persia, married to King Xerxes or Ahasuerus. Her father is a man named Mordecai who realizes that Esther, being confined in the palace, doesn’t have a clue what is about to happen. So he alerts her to the situation and tells her that if she doesn’t persuade the king to stop this, the consequences will be grave. So Esther tells Mordecai to gather all his friends together and have them fast. Then she will muster the courage to go to speak to the king. The first eight verses of Esther 5 tell us how she plans her approach to the king. This is important because you don’t just pop in for a chat with the king. So here’s what she does: Read Esther 5:1-8.

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June 08, 2014 “Reject Passivity … Accept Responsibility”

Sunday, June 8th, 2014


ILLUSTRATION – I was thinking again this week about the life of Brooks Douglass who shared his story with us on Easter Sunday. If you were here you may remember that when Brooks was a teenager a horrific tragedy occurred in his family that would forever change everything for him. Two strangers entered their home, murdered Brooks’ father (who was a well-known pastor), his mother, and shot Brooks and his sister leaving them to die. After that awful event Brooks’ life took many twists and turns. He was a naturally gifted person and ended up becoming the youngest state senator in Oklahoma history. Yet all the outward success in his life masked the inward reality that he had never fully dealt with the murder of his parents. He was still filled with hatred for the men who had destroyed his family and his life. In his role as a senator he found himself one day visiting the prison where one of the killers was waiting on death row. After cutting through the red tape, Brooks was finally allowed to sit down face to face with the killer. He just wanted some answers. The man had apologized, but Brooks wasn’t sure he was sincere. After grilling the killer for two hours, Brooks got up, ready to walk out the door, when the killer once more said, “I’m truly sorry.” Brooks said that he felt the Lord saying to him, “You’re not finished here.” (more…)


June 1, 2014 “Making a Lasting Impact”

Sunday, June 1st, 2014


If you had a piece of paper in front of you I’m sure you would have no trouble writing the names of people you know have made a lasting impact on your life. The first person that comes to your mind may be a parent or a grandparent, a teacher or a coach, a boss or a mentor, a servant of God somewhere in the church you attended. But you know that your life is different today because their life intersected your life.

ILLUSTRATION – I think about John and Rene Harmon who were friends with my family when I was a boy. John was an Air Force master sergeant who worked on airplanes; Rene was a stay-at-home mom for their two children. They were strong believers and attended church each week. Often they invited my sister and me to spend the night with them on Saturday nights so we could go to church with them on Sunday morning. One summer they invited me to Vacation Bible School at their church. I went every day with them; it was the first time I remember hearing the Gospel and realizing that I needed a Savior. It was a few years later before I was saved, but they made a lasting impact upon my life. I wouldn’t be doing what I do today without people like that. I’m sure that you can think of people in your life who have made a lasting impact. (more…)


May 25, 2015 “Standing Against the Darkness”

Sunday, May 25th, 2014


Let’s open our Bibles again today to the book of Esther 3. As you’re turning I want to say how grateful I am for the men and women who have given their lives in service to our nation. Just two weeks ago the son of a family we have known for many years was killed in Afghanistan. Let’s pray for the families of those whose loved ones have paid the highest price for the freedoms we enjoy. Pray.

ILLUSTRATION – Several years ago when we lived in New Mexico we would often make trips to Carlsbad Caverns Nat’l Park. If you’ve been there you know that you walk down hundreds of feet below the surface winding through caves that have spectacular beauty. In those days there was a point where you entered one cave, and park rangers warned you that they were about to turn off the lights for just a few seconds to let you feel just how dark the caverns are so far removed from the light. When the lights went out the darkness was stifling … it’s hard to describe how it feels. It’s a relief when the lights come back on. (more…)


May 18, 2014 “Remember Who You Are”

Sunday, May 18th, 2014


ILLUSTRATION – If you know anything about Super Heroes you know that some of them keep their true identity a secret … like Peter Parker. He’s Peter Parker (PHOTO) until the world needs him, then he changes his identity to Spider Man (PHOTO). It’s a little different with Dr. Bruce Banner (PHOTO). He changes his identity when somebody makes him really mad, and he becomes the Hulk (PHOTO). And then there is probably my favorite, Captain America (PHOTO). He’s just always Captain America. He doesn’t have another identity. Now which one best describes you? Are you like Peter Parker … you change your identity when people want you to be different? Are you like Bruce Banner … you change when people really make you mad? Or are you like Captain America … always just who you are.

And that’s a real challenge for us as believers … in every situation to remember that we are the people of God. Turn to Esther 2. This was a challenge for a young lady named Esther. We’re studying her amazing story in the book named after her. Let’s start by reading… (more…)


May 11, 2014 “A Woman’s Place”

Sunday, May 11th, 2014


Happy Mother’s Day. I’m starting a new series from one of the two books in the Bible named after a woman … the book of Esther. You’ll find it if you go to Psalms, take a left and go two books to Esther. As you’re turning I want to give thanks to God for the fresh start we launched last Sunday. The spirit was incredible. I could tell your hearts were truly set on giving God greater glory. What would happen if we put that much prayer and intensity into every Lord’s Day? Okay, have you found Esther?

Let’s just take one quick flyover of the book, then we’ll come back and land in the first chapter. Let me give you a quick summary of the book of Esther by introducing you to the main cast of characters. The story revolves around…



May 4, 2014 “Face to Face with God”

Sunday, May 4th, 2014


Welcome to our new format. Our purpose in all of this is to give God greater glory.

ILLUSTRATION – That song reminds of the old Fanny Crosby hymn we sang last week, “My Savior First of All.”

When my life work is ended, and I cross the swelling tide, When the bright and glorious morning I shall see,
I shall know my Redeemer when I reach the other side, And His smile will be the first to welcome me.

Thru the gates of the city in a robe of spotless white,
He will lead me where no tears will ever fall;
In the glad song of ages I shall mingle with delight
But I long to meet my Savior first of all.

I shall know Him, I shall know Him,
And redeemed by His side I shall stand,
I shall know Him, I shall know Him,
By the print of the nails in His hand.



April 27, 2014 “Heaven … Our Forever Home”

Sunday, April 27th, 2014


Today I’m picking up with the series, “Heaven … Really?” So please open your Bibles with me to Revelation 21:1. Jesus Christ appeared to the Apostle John and revealed or unveiled truths about time and eternity. And Jesus speaks through John to people who needed to know how to live victoriously in the midst of suffering … and how to keep their eyes fixed on heaven. Follow along as I read from Revelation 21:1-5 about “Heaven … Our Forever Home.”

The Bible tells us that God’s great redemptive activity doesn’t end with us getting saved. The Bible tells us that God’s great redemptive activity will come to a glorious climax one day when we see what John saw in…

Revelation 21:1 (NIV) – Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. (more…)


April 20, 2014 “The God Who Raises the Dead”

Sunday, April 20th, 2014

Most of us know what pressure is. Pressure is what comes upon us when forces outside of us “press in” on us. And we feel different kinds of pressure:
• Financial pressures – too much month left at the end of the money
• Physical pressures – when we’re sick or weak
• Time pressures – pulled in a hundred different directions by demands of family, work or school
• The pressure of performance … of measuring up

ILLUSTRATION – Maybe that’s the kind of pressure that was being felt by this college student who was a recent contestant on the TV game show “Wheel of Fortune.” It appeared that he was just one answer away from winning $1 million, but the pressure of performance just got to him.  (more…)

  • Bio & Introduction

    Dr. Michael Dean has been the senior pastor at Travis Avenue Baptist Church since 1991, having also served churches elsewhere in Texas and New Mexico. He and his wife Nan are blessed with two married children and three grandchildren. With a keen sense of calling to shepherd the flock of God entrusted to his care, Michael longs to see people become passionate followers of Jesus Christ. His hobbies include long-distance running, golf and hunting.

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