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Senior Pastor Phil Roland


Pastor Ray Scott


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          History is full of accounts of single individuals who have made a difference. Think of the military battles that have turned on the axis of one heroic person. Think of the artists and the contribution of their individual lives, from Michelangelo and da Vinci to Brahms and Beethoven. Think of the scientists, the inventors, the explorers, and the technological experts who have literally changed the course of history. Think of the courageous preachers down through time who have stood alone in the gap and made a difference. The face of the church was changed by significant individuals—men like Augustine, Tyndale, Luther, Calvin, Wesley, Spurgeon, Moody, and Graham, to name only a few.

          In one of the stories of Australian missionary Ross R. Remington, he tells of his own conversion. His life had, up to that point, been one of drugs, drink, motorbikes, stealing, and breaking the law. In the midst of all his, he was invited to an evangelistic meeting organized by the local Bible College. He records it this way,

          ‘As I found my seat in the tent meeting, people didn’t seem to want to sit too close to me. I can’t say I blamed them. I had wild looking hair, a leather jacket and motorbike grease on my jeans. When the preacher Ralph Reed gave the appeal, I knew that was what I wanted and ran down to the front with chairs falling over in my wake.’

          Later on, he goes on to record what happened from the perspective of one of the Bible College students Paul Newsham, who was there that night and later become his friend.

          “At the end of the semester, the Bible College principal told the students that they were going to hold evangelistic meetings for two weeks in a tent. The students were not thrilled about this, as they were in the middle of completing assignments and preparing for the end of term exams. Added to this, it rained every night for the two-week campaign. They may not have minded so much, if others, besides the faculty and students, had attended these meetings.

          “Towards the end of the campaign, a young man walked in who was obviously not a Christian. As the young man, with the long wild looking hair, leather jacket and motorbike grease all over his jeans, responded to the altar call, Paul thought, ‘We held meetings for two weeks for this? One person. Was it really worth it?'”

          That is a question that is often asked. In this case, it was worth it, for that young lad eventually entered the ministry and after serving in Australia has spent approximately thirty-five years as a missionary in Asia, the last fourteen years in China. Through his ministry, who knows how many people have become believers in Jesus. One person is always important. Sometimes you do not know what God has in mind for that one person.

Alan Langstaff, Director of Kairos Ministries' newsletter for Summer, 2017.

Australian missionary Ross R. Remington entitled ‘The Stolen Cow (& 99 Other Stories).’

          This morning's sermon explores the Power of One to make a difference.

Pastor Phil  <><<


August 27, 2017 - Sheepfold Ministries

Pastor Phil Roland



Various Biblical Texts


"One person can make a difference. Many before me have written and given sermons around this theme and title. This sermon has been inspired by my lifelong friend, Alan Langstaff." Pastor Phil  <><<


"I am only one, but I am still one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something. And because I cannot do everything I will not refuse to do the something that I can do."      - Helen Keller



1. Genesis 12:1-3 - God uses one man, Abrahm to create and bless an entire nation

1 Now the LORD had said to Abram: "Get out of your country, From your family And from your father's house, To a land that I will show you.
2 I will make you a great nation; I will bless you And make your name great; And you shall be a blessing. 3 I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed."   Genesis 12:1-3


2. Esther 4:14 - One Jewish girl saves her people at the risk of her life

14 For if you remain completely silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place, but you and your father's house will perish. Yet who knows whether you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this?"    Esther 4:14


3. 2 Kings 5:1-3 - One little girl brings healing and salvation to a world military leader

3 Then she said to her mistress, "If only my master were with the prophet who is in Samaria! For he would heal him of his leprosy."        2 Kings 5:3


4. Joshua 23:10-11 -  Joshua's dying promise that one righteous man shall chase a thousand

10 One man of you shall chase a thousand, for the LORD your God is He who fights for you, as He promised you. 11 Therefore take careful heed to yourselves, that you love the LORD your God.       Joshua 23:10-11


5. Isaiah 6:8 - Isaiah hears God's Call and Preaches to his generation

8 Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying: "Whom shall I send, And who will go for Us?" Then I said, "Here am I! Send me."       Isaiah 6:8



THE POWER OF ONE, cont. p.2


6. Hebrews 11:7 - Noah heard God's warning and saved all mankind

7 By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith.         Hebrews 11:7

7. Matthew 17:20 - One man with faith in God is able to move mountains

20 So Jesus said to them, "Because of your unbelief; for assuredly, I say to you, if you have faith as a mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move; and nothing will be impossible for you.           Matthew 17:20

8. John 6:9-13 - One boy's lunch feeds thousands

9 "There is a lad here who has five barley loaves and two small fish, but what are they among so many?"        John 6:9

9. Acts 8:27 - One Apostle, led of the Spirit converts an entire nation to Christ

27So he (Philip) arose and went. And behold, a man of Ethiopia, a eunuch of great authority under Candace the queen of the Ethiopians, who had charge of all her treasury, and had come to Jerusalem to worship, Acts 8:27


10. Philippians 4:13 - Christ in you can accomplish all things!

13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Philippians 4:13


11. Romans 5:12 - One man, Adam brought sin and death to mankind.

12 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death thru sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned--  Romans 5:12


12. Romans 5:18-19 - One man, Jesus brought righteousness and life.

18 Therefore, as through one man's offense judgment came to all men, resulting in condemnation, even so through one Man's righteous act the free gift came to all men, resulting in justification of life. 19 For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man's obedience many will be made righteous.    Romans 5:18-19

13. Luke 22:42 - Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane is One who brings salvation to Mankind.

42 saying, "Father, if it is Your will, take this cup away from Me; nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done." Luke 22:42

          A. Thru the Power of One Jesus brings us Salvation

          B. He submits to God's Plan like Moses on Sinai

          C. He becomes the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world

          D. The Power of One who made the difference


THE POWER OF ONE, cont. p.3


14. Luke 15:4 - You are important to God, when you were lost He sought you out and put you on His shoulders.

4 "What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness, and go after the one which is lost until he finds it?   Luke 15:4

15. Luke 15:5-7 - Jesus rejoices over the Power of One who was lost and is found.

5 And when he has found it, he lays it on his shoulders, rejoicing.
6 And when he comes home, he calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, 'Rejoice with me, for I have found my sheep which was lost!' 7 I say to you that likewise there will be more joy in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine just persons who need no repentance.     Luke 15:5-7





T H E   P O W E R   O F   O N E





One song can spark a moment

One flower can wake the dream

One tree can start a forest

One bird can herald Spring

One smile begins a friendship

One handclasp lifts a soul

One star can guide a ship at sea

One word can frame the goal

One vote can change a nation

One sunbeam lights a room

One candle wipes out darkness

One laugh will conquer gloom

One step must start each journey

One word must start a prayer

One hope will raise our spirits

One touch can show you care

One voice can speak with wisdom

One heart can know what's true

One life can make the difference

You see, it's up to you! 

(Author Unknown)

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A Woman Who Made A Difference

The Power of One

          In 1921, Lewis Lawes became the warden at Sing Sing Prison. No prison was tougher than Sing Sing during that time. But when Warden Lawes retired some 20 years later, that prison had become a humanitarian institution. Those who studied the system said credit for the change belonged to Lawes. But when he was asked about the transformation, here's what he said: "I owe it all to my wonderful wife, Catherine, who is buried outside the prison walls."

          Catherine Lawes was a young mother with three small children when her husband became the warden. Everybody warned her from the beginning that she should never set foot inside the prison walls, but that didn't stop Catherine! When the first prison basketball game was held, she went walking into the gym with her three beautiful kids and she sat in the stands with the inmates.

Her attitude was: "My husband and I are going to take care of these men and I believe they will take care of me! I don't have to worry!"

She insisted on getting acquainted with them and their records. She discovered one convicted murderer was blind so she paid him a visit. Holding his hand in hers she said, "Do you read Braille?" "What's Braille?" he asked. Then she taught him how to read. Years later he would weep in love for her.

Later, Catherine found a deaf-mute in prison. She went to school to learn how to use sign language. Many said that Catherine Lawes was the body of Jesus that came alive again in Sing Sing from 1921 to 1937.

Then, she was killed in a car accident. The next morning Lewis Lawes didn't come to work, so the acting warden took his place. It seemed almost instantly that the prison knew something was wrong.



                    The following day, her body was resting in a casket in her home, three-quarters of a mile from the prison. As the acting warden took his early morning walk he was shocked to see a large crowd of the toughest, hardest-looking criminals gathered like a herd of animals at the main gate. He came closer and noted tears of grief and sadness. He knew how much they loved Catherine. He turned and faced the men, "All right, men, you can go. Just be sure and check in tonight!" Then he opened the gate and a parade of criminals walked, without a guard, the three-quarters of a mile to stand in line to pay their final respects to Catherine Lawes, a woman who made a difference. And every one of them checked back in. Every one!

Stories For The Heart
Alice Gray, Multnomah, pp. 54-55.



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