CCA Pastors’ & Leaders’ Conference 2021

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Bill Stonebraker Teaches at CCA International Pastors' & Leaders' Conference 2021

Story by Kate Larsen
Photos by Tom Price and Josh Larson

Follow Calvary Chapel Magazine as we publish summaries of the teachings at the CCA 2021 Calvary Chapel International Pastors' & Leaders' Conference at CC Golden Springs, CA.

In this installment, Pastor Bill Stonebraker of Calvary Chapel Honolulu, HI, exhorts the audience to be courageous.

Watch this teaching in its entirety at Day 2 / Bill Stonebraker

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Participants at the conference enjoy several praise and worship sessions daily.

Pastor Bill Stonebraker opened Session 3 on Tuesday with the conclusion that his message would be an exhortation on courage, and he wove this thread throughout its entirety—"Be brave and you will be heard.” Following a contextual overview of Acts Chapter 4, he settled upon verse 13 and then verses 19-20.

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. Acts 4:13

He spoke of those in the present and the past—Pastor John MacArthur, the martyr Polycarp, and Miss California—whose brave stances for their convictions made men and women take notice. These accounts of bravery drew attention, and courage is contagious.

“Be fearless in proclaiming the Word of God. Don’t compromise to be safe or for popularity,” Bill exhorted the men and women before him. “People respect courage and loathe cowardice.”

He asserted that the stance that Peter and John took in verse 13 created antagonism, but that the Sanhedrin also “marveled.” That marveling carried a sense of admiration to it as they also recognized these unschooled men had been with Jesus. What they failed to see was that they were still with Jesus!

The change that took place in Peter and John was a result of the Holy Spirit upon them, about His power in their lives. Pastor Bill pondered this question, Who is the church more like today: Peter and John before or after Pentecost?

He then pointed to a series of Scriptures challenging the church to wake up out of the slumber that it has settled into. In Romans 13:11-12, believers are told to awake out of sleep, the lethargy that has fallen upon them. “Falling asleep spiritually is costly,” Bill proclaimed. In Luke 19:13, Jesus tells His followers to “occupy until I come.”

Bill exclaimed, “Be alert, watch, be ready,” as he passionately expounded upon the parable of the 10 virgins (Matthew 25:1-13). He challenged those who began following Jesus in the 1970s to see if perhaps His not coming immediately had caused them to lose their excitement and sense of urgency.

Another parable He put forth to them, saying: “The kingdom of heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his field; but while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat and went his way. Matthew 13:24-25

“The enemy causes Christians and the Church to fall into lethargy,” Bill stated as he settled on these three words: while men slept. This led into a powerful illustration of the events that have taken place while the Church has been sleeping, including the legalization of abortion; the removal of prayer from schools, of Christmas caroling, of the Ten Commandments, and inevitably God from schools. Same sex marriage became legal on our watch, and [those in] the church are among those steeped in pornography.

“Be brave and you will be heard. Courage is contagious,” Bill imparted. Pastor Bill recalled the words of Chuck Smith who often exhorted those in his body to “Get right or get left behind.”

Adapting a famous quote, he stated, “The only thing necessary for evil to triumph is for pastors to do nothing.”

Pastor Bill then went on to quote Frenchman Alexis de Tocqueville describing early America when he said, “I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her commodious harbors and her ample rivers—and it was not there … in her fertile fields and boundless forests—and it was not there … in her rich mines and her vast world commerce—and it was not there … in her democratic Congress and her matchless Constitution—and it was not there. Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power.”

Bill concluded that our pulpits need to flame again with the righteousness of Christ.


Watch this teaching in its entirety at Day 2 / Bill Stonebraker

View CCA International Pastors' & Leaders' Conference Schedule

Learn more about Calvary Chapel Association

Visit the website of Pastor Bill Stonebraker's church at:

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John Randall (center), senior pastor of Calvary Chapel San Juan Capistrano, CA, enjoys fellowship with other attendees. He is one of more than 1,500 pastors, leaders, and their wives getting encouragement from the CCA conference.


All verses above are quoted from the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.

© 2021 Calvary Chapel Magazine (CCM). All rights reserved. Articles or photographs may not be reproduced without the written permission of CCM. All Scripture quotations, unless otherwise indicated, are taken from the New King James Version. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.® Used by permission.