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We are pleased to present the sermons of Dr. James Merritt, one of America’s great expository preachers. For more than 40 years, Dr. Merritt has preached God’s Word through the local church he pastors, as well as through Touching Lives weekly television broadcasts. 

Dr. Merritt’s messages are available here via digital download, along with outlines, note pages, PowerPoint slides and other resources, for a modest cost.

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Coming Into Focus

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Scriptures: 1 John 1:9, James 5:16, Psalm 66:17-18, 51:4, Isaiah 55:7


God wants a relationship with us that is up close and personal. This personal relationship means we can talk to God, know more about Him, begin to understand His ways and follow Him in obedience with our lives. But what if all this is true, and yet God seems distant, the relationship broken? The only thing that can impact our relationship with God is sin. If we do not surrender our lives to God through Jesus Christ, that unforgiven sin is a barrier to God. And if we have surrendered our lives to God, then unconfessed sin can keep that relationship out of focus. In this message, Dr. Merritt explains how to deal with both types of sin, and how confessing our sins can bring our relationship to God back into focus.


"The first thing you’ve got to do if you are going to deal with sin is admit you’ve got sin in the first place. That is very hard for people to do. Think about how seldom people even use this word even more. How many times do you hear a politician, an athlete, a celebrity who gets caught in some kind of terrible, terrible sin say something like this, 'I made a mistake.' There is a big difference between a sin and a mistake. You never really feel guilt over a mistake. When we make a mistake what do we do? We shrug our shoulders and say, 'Everybody makes mistakes.' Mistakes don’t bring guilt. Sin brings guilt." --Dr. Merritt


Keywords: up close, personal, God, know, relationship, understand, personal, Jesus, Christ, eye chart, focus, sin, confession, horizontal, vertical, David, Snellen, Kent Crockett, Supreme Court, Miranda rights, admission, repentance, forgiveness, fellowship, shame, guilt


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