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Tuesday, August 21, 2012

to the church in.....

There is so much to be learned from the seven letters to the churches found in the first few chapters of Revelation. Two weeks ago we set off to see what we could learn from these letters about our churches today, not to mention Gods personal encouragement and warnings. Last week we looked at two more churches, Smyrna and Pergamum, and although they were well known and very popular cities God sees past all that and gets straight to the matter. Ephesus left thier first love and Pergamum struggled with worldliness, but Smyrna didn't receive a repromand. Instead the Lord warned them of things to come. In the midst of things they were told it would get worse and that satan would send some to prison for 10 days. How encouraging, huh? Actually to be told by God that we are standing firm and to receive His encouragement is a great blessing. Pergamum on the other hand was facing persecution as well and in my estimation, pretty intense. Scripture makes it clear that satan "dwells" where those from Pergamum dwell. There is every reason to believe that satan made this his headquarters, at least for a time. This city struggled with worldliness, idolatry and adultry. Emperor worship was very popular and was punishable by death if refused. All in all it is an awesome study and my challenge is to consider what the letter written to our churches might say. I see the deeds, perseverance, BUT THIS I HAVE AGAINST YOU...... Till next time keep it simple and keep it central on Christ. Wishing you a great week and hope you are able to follow along. A special shout out to my buddies Josh and Darcy in North Dakota, miss you guys:-) till next time, keep it in the Word! P.M.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

To the church of . . . .

Do you resemble those in Thesalonica or those in Berea. That is probably an odd question to ask but as we flow through the pages of Acts chapter 17 it all begins to make sense. Thessalonica had several people that chose to follow the teaching of Paul and Silas and yet when some saw this they were offended and sought to arrest them. How crazy is that. For three sabaths Paul preached in the synogogue and was free to do so evidently. We see that some of those "brothern" snuck Paul and Silas out that they may safely go to Berea. When they arrived in Berea they were welcomed and the Bereans received the word with eagerness. They verified daily what Paul shared with them through the Scriptures and were eager to learn. So I ask you again, are you closer to the Thessalonians or the Bereans? Beginning today we will begin to discuss the letters to the 7 churches in Revelation and how they relate to todays church. join us as we begin this study soon. Till the next time. P.M.

Friday, August 10, 2012

preparing to cross the bridge

As I have been mentioning, this fall we will begin a new series called "bridges" and in order to prepare for that we will begin to look at what scripture has to say to the church. We will be examining the letters to the 7 churches in Revelation and gleaning what we can as to our church today. This should prove to be of great blessing and importance to prepare the way for us to cross the bridges we will be discussing. As we will see, man may think hes got it all figured out but as we'll see even the good things we're doing can come out of improper motivation and selfish desires. As we progress through the next several weeks we will update the blog with the main points for those that can't attend or we're unable so you can follow along. Till next time check out the letters to the churches in Revelation, and we'll be ready to go. P.M.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Wow, what a summer! Just a few short weeks left and it will be back to school, and the next thing to look forward to is thanksgiving. We've covered a lot of ground and still have much to cover before we begin our "BRIDGES" series. We had a great baptism service with 9 people taking this step of obedience mandated from Jesus Christ. We had a great potluck and plenty of fellowship. As we journey on from here let us not forget the words found in Ephesians 4:29, Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear. What a great scripture to remind us of the impact our words can have on others. It can serve to hold others accountable, challenge us, encourage us but also tear people down. Usually those who don't have the same ideals as we do. Our tuesday night small group has been going through the "respectable sins" book and as i prepared for tonights group the topic is frustration and sins of the tongue. ouch. If you don't have a copy of this book let me know or better yet just order one so you can remind yourself daily of the many things that creep in unnoticed and that we consider acceptable becuase we aren't out slashing people or going to the latest movie release and freaking out. Truth is sin is sin and although we put an importance or numeric value on them the truth is they are all failure of the law. Thankfully we are forgiven in Christ and although we still sin, God is merciful on us. For those of you who decide youd rather try to live up to the law, you will be judged by the law so good luck with that. For those of us who are secure in Jesus loving arms, lets use our mouths to build up the body. Pick someone today and build them up in Christ. Not just once but multiple times and watch the way it changes thier outlook on things. Till next time, keep it in the Word P.M.