Month: March 2016

Resurrection Sunday, 2016

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This year our teens participated in the music and did a powerful reading. Pastor Steve finished his series from Isaiah 53.

 

No Prejudice; this was Christ’s example

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John 4

1 Therefore, when the Lord knew that the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John

2 (though Jesus Himself did not baptize, but His disciples),

3 He left Judea and departed again to Galilee.

4 But He needed to go through Samaria.

5 So He came to a city of Samaria which is called Sychar, near the plot of ground that Jacob gave to his son Joseph.

6 Now Jacob’s well was there. Jesus therefore, being wearied from His journey, sat thus by the well. It was about the sixth hour.

7 A woman of Samaria came to draw water. Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink.”

8 For His disciples had gone away into the city to buy food.

My love for this passage begins with this narrative. Jesus is up north and faces the ire of the Pharisees for his baptizing.   He decides it is time to leave and go back to Galilee. To do so requires them to walk through Samaria. A normal Jew would have added hours to his trip by bypassing Samaria lest he be contaminated with those half-breeds. Prejudice ran high as Jews believed themselves better than Samaritans. Jesus acted in a manner of love for all people, especially for the Samaritans.

 

Verse 4 tells us that Jesus “needed” to go through Samaria. When most Jews bypassed this unclean place, Jesus needed to go through it. Jesus’ love for people bypassed race and prejudice at every turn. He here made a huge statement to the disciples who would one day take the gospel to the “dogs,” the Gentiles. The disciples would have to overcome their prejudice but Jesus set an example for them.

 

You see, Jesus knew that the woman was coming to the well at noon. He also knew that she had a great spiritual need. He also knew that the whole town needed Him. In the sovereign will and plan of God the people of Samaria were ripe for the Lord Jesus.

 

We must be more like Christ in this matter. We must see all people as people who need the Lord Jesus. We must look past their income levels, backgrounds, criminal records, or any other prejudice causing element and see them as people who need Jesus. This is what Jesus did. We can do no less.

 

Tonight we will gather for our prayer time and Bible study. There will be youth group but there will not be any Kids4Truth. Join us at 7:00.

Saturday morning is our men’s prayer breakfast at 7:30 at Denny’s. Join us for a time of encouragement in the Word and in prayer.

 

Sunday is our church dinner day after the morning service. Remember to bring enough food for your family and a little more. We always enjoy our times together and this week will be no different.

 

Have a great day in the Lord,

 

PS

The Son has authority to grant eternal life

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John 3

35 The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into His hand. 36 He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and he who does not believe the Son shall not see life, but the wrath of God abides on him.”

I hope that after our study of Isaiah 53 this passage will be better understood.  The Son of God, the Lord Jesus Christ, is loved by the Father.  This love is a love from eternity past.  John 17:24  Before God loved us He loved the Son.  God demonstrated His love by sending the Son to pay for our sin while we were still sinners.  When we comprehend that God sent Him whom He loved the most to pay the eternal price for our sin the gift of salvation is even more precious.  Thus, God also loves us.

Since the Son in obedience to the Father accomplished our salvation He is now exalted. Isaiah 53:11 speaks of a victory parade where the Son was exalted above all others.  Colossians 2 speaks to the same exaltation.  Thus the Father has placed all authority in heaven and on earth into the hand of the Son.  Jesus deserves this ultimate authority for He paid the price of it with His blood and then He paid the price of justice for our sins so we could be set free.

Now, read verse 36.  Eternal life is in the hand of the Son.  Those who believe in the work that He accomplished for them have everlasting life.  He gives live to those who accept, by faith, the gift that He bought and paid for on the cross and through the empty tomb.  Christ wants to give eternal life and gives freely to all who believe on Him.

However, those who live to reject Christ will not see life but will see the wrath of God for their sin.  Either, one accepts the work of Christ on their behalf, or they face the wrath of God and pay their own justice for their own sin.  We believe in telling people about Christ because we believe the promises and warnings of this chapter of the Bible.   We want the light of salvation to shine through our good works so those around us might see those works and glorify God with us.  1 John 5:12 “He who has the Son has life.  He who does not have the Son of God does not have life.”

Resurrection Sunday was another year marked for Grace for Life Bible Church.  Celebrating the resurrection of Christ together was a glorious event. The youth who led the worship did a wonderful job and we are grateful for their work to bring us to exalt the Savior together.  Thanks to all who worked to make the music and sound come together.  The study from Isaiah 53 was a highlight for me.  How awesome a God and a Savior that we have!  To so clearly describe His work on our behalf and to complete it so well that there was nothing left to accomplish is more than amazing.  We will ever read Isaiah 53 with a more clear understanding of Christ and the Father working together to save us.

Many of our kids are off of school this week.  Some of you are on vacation with your kids.  Enjoy some well needed family time.  We will be going up to Victory Academy Thursday and Friday. 

A week from Sunday, April 10th, the Men’s Glee Club is having a concert focusing on Heroes past and present.  It will be a great concert with much variety of music.  Pastor Bill is going to be recognized as a hero of peace.  I have tickets available. 

Have a great day in the Lord,

PS

Christ’s Message, Christ’s Attitude, the Treatment Christ Received, 
and Christ’s Glorious Actions – pt 2

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Part 2 from Isaiah 53:3-10 looks at the treatment Christ received to pay for our sin before the Father. He did not just die with His people but He died for them becoming their substitution bearing their sin and the corresponding sorrows.  Hallelujah!

 

Christ’s Message, Christ’s Attitude, the Treatment Christ Received, 
and Christ’s Glorious Actions

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Jesus Christ is the only Key to unlock all of the tumblers of Isaiah 53.  (I misplaced the word “theocracy” with the word “theophany.”  When you get there just make the change in your mind.)

 

Why do we believe Jesus?

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John 3

31 He who comes from above is above all; he who is of the earth is earthly and speaks of the earth. He who comes from heaven is above all. 32 And what He has seen and heard, that He testifies; and no one receives His testimony. 33 He who has received His testimony has certified that God is true. 34 For He whom God has sent speaks the words of God, for God does not give the Spirit by measure.

 

When we hear people speak how do we establish that they have authority?  Where does their authority come from?  Does it come from their own study or from the person they are talking about?  When Jesus came He spoke from the authority of His own background, which was heaven with God.  The testimony of Jesus was true for it was what He knew from His own first-hand experience.  For Jesus to speak anything different would not have been true.  The people wanted a different message but that would have made Jesus a liar.

When people received the message of Jesus they confirmed in their hearts that God is true.  All of the words that Jesus spoke were truth and overlaid exactly parallel to the Word of God.  Jesus did not speak nor do anything contrary to the OT laws and prophesies.  In fact, Jesus expounded on them and fulfilled them.  When people today reject the teachings of Jesus they too are rejecting the words and the authority of God.

Our faith system is far more than a religion to be debated for what we believe has come from God Almighty.  The Jehovah of the Bible is the God of all gods.  Those who worship a lesser god because they need to see their god but think they are worshipping the God of all are mistaken.  Our message has authority because it came from God Himself.  When Jesus confirmed the words of God He also confirmed His own authority as God in the flesh.  God gave the Spirit to Jesus to confirm all that He said was true.

Be wary of those who twist the words of Jesus to fit their religious system.  They are twisting the very words of God.  Rejoice in the realization that God has revealed Himself to you and then faithfully study His words so you don’t become snared by the false teachers and the false religious systems.  Only Jesus can fill us to satisfaction, enjoy Him.

Tonight we will be back studying Isaiah 53.  Jesus Christ life and death and future ministry were clearly prophesied 700 years before he was born!  This is truly amazing. What is more amazing is how Isaiah clearly laid out the very work of Christ on our behalf.  It is more than a depiction of Christ on the cross but is a commentary on what Jesus did and how God Himself was behind it all.   Join us at 7:00 tonight for a time of worship, praise and study of the work of Christ for us. 

Sunday morning we will begin serving breakfast at 9:00.  The Resurrection morning service will begin at 10:30.  The resurrection of the Savior and His continuing work define our faith and our very lives.  I will be back in Isaiah 53 to show us just how blessed we are for time and eternity because of the work of Christ for us. 

Sunday’s sermon is available on the church website.

Have a great day in the Lord,

PS

Our “normal” game time 

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Hockey with pool noodles and a ping-pong ball