No Turning Back

BW 2023 Pulpit Theme

SYNOPSIS: “I have decided to follow Jesus. No turning back.” The words of that song are powerful. They exemplify the attitude and commitment Jesus called us to in Luke 9:23: “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me” (ESV). Of course, Jesus is not calling us to a level of commitment that he has not already fulfilled. Calvary showed us the lengths to which God was willing to go to demonstrate his love and commitment to us. Paul said everything else to him meant nothing in the face of gaining Christ: “Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ” (Philippians 3:8)(ESV). A person who exercises on occasion will never develop the healthy figure they want. A person who practices their skills at music on occasion will never play the way they dream they could. The same is true of our Christian walk. While the idea of wholehearted commitment means sacrifice, it’s also the only way we will ever develop deeper faith and change the world for Christ. Martyr Jim Elliott wrote in his journal: “He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose.” In 2023 and beyond, let’s commit. Let’s pick up our crosses in every area of life and say together at Bartlett Woods, “We have decided to follow Jesus. No turning back.”


Over and over in Scripture, we see God’s people, in both testaments, commit themselves to God only to turn back to idols. Not much has changed. Our idols don’t always look like statues or carvings, but they’re no less captivating and destructive. This series is a look at some of the various idols we face today that pull us away from our commitment to God. There is only one God. He called his people in Exodus 20 to have no others before him. Each of these sermons is a call to “one”, one God, one allegiance, one source of hope and fulfilment.


SEPT 10- Committed to One
SEPT 17- One Remote: the god of Entertainment
SEPT 24- One Trophy: the god of Success & Achievement
OCT 1- One Substance: the god of Substance Addiction
OCT 8- One Table: the god of Food
OCT 15- One Checkbook: the god of Money