April, 2010

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Don’t Give Up!

Friday, April 16th, 2010

Many years ago a young man ran for the legislature in a large state and was badly defeated. 

He next entered business, failed, and spent 17 years of his life paying the debts of a worthless partner.

He was in love with a beautiful woman to whom he became engaged, but she died.

Reentering politics, he ran for Congress but was badly defeated. He then tried to get an appointment to the United States Land Office but failed. He became a candidate for the United States Senate and was badly defeated. Two years later he was again defeated.

It was one failure after another and many setbacks! But he refused to give up and eventually became President of the United States, perhaps our greatest.

His name was Abraham Lincoln.

Christian, “Don’t Give Up!”

James tells the church “we count them blessed who endure!”

This Sunday in our study in the book of James we’ll learn:

#1 The importance of identifying the “Triggers” that lead to a sense of vulnerability and weakness.

#2 The powerful examples that have gone before who have not given up who encourage our lives and tell us that we’re not alone.

#3 The resources that God has provided for us  to finish well!

Let’s be in prayer that the Lord by His Spirit explodes these realities in our hearts like never before.

“Tell A Friend” and “Invite A Friend” this Sunday!

See you at church worshipping the KING and experiencing the power of His resurrection!

Pastor Greg

Stand In The Gap With Us

Saturday, April 10th, 2010

We had a GREAT prayer meeting with the men in our church and a wonderful turnout this morning!

We’re calling our Men’s Prayer Breakfast “Stand In The Gap With Us!”

Focused in prayer in 5 areas:

#1 The Whole Family “Joined And Knit Together” Causing Growth (Eph 4:16)

#2 Jesus Known In This Generation (Matt 9:37)

#3 For “Prodigal’s” (sons and daughters and loved ones healed by the Father’s   love and grace in Christ!) (Luke 15:1-32)

#4 Godly Leadership In The Home (Duet 6:4-7)

#5 Spiritual Revival (Isaiah 44:3)

I am looking forward to our next time together!

The Resurrection Thru A Jewish Lens

Thursday, April 1st, 2010

To understand the resurrection of Jesus, we must examine it through a first century Jewish lens. 

The resurrection of Jesus is Jewish history!

To the early followers of Jesus like Peter, James, John, Mary and Joanna (all first century Jews), the resurrection was a reality that was undeniable. They believed it happened.  The only reasonable explanation for a group of Jews to follow Jesus as the Messiah was that there was overwhelming evidence that He had bodily risen from the dead.  Their belief in the resurrection needed to be more than the kind of belief Plato described as an “in-between knowing and not knowing state.” Jesus had been executed by Roman authorities and in order for people to worship Jesus as Messiah King, it had to be based on a reality that excluded any possibility of “hallucinations”, or “visions” of Jesus being alive after His execution.  The first Jewish Christians in Jerusalem knew Jesus conquered the grave.  How?  Because there was an empty tomb and Jesus met with them numerous times and was even seen by five hundred at once, revealing that He was alive!  Without the bodily resurrection of Jesus, there would be no Christianity. 

I’d like to make a few distinctions.

We live in an age of science and it has brought incredible advancement and helped us to see the genius of God. But science is unable to answer why we’re here, and what the purpose of life is, and who God is!  In addition, life’s experiences are beyond science. Even a committed scientist experiences the delight of listening to music, watching a football game or falling in love – these are all experienced and enjoyed outside the scientific discipline. As committed as a scientist is to scientific knowledge, the belief that she has that her husband loves her or that Mozart’s music is beautiful, is beyond scientific knowing.

All of this to say, the resurrection of Jesus is not a matter of science but a matter of history! Science studies the repeatable. Historians study the unrepeatable. While science overwhelmingly says that people who die do not resurrect, this does not mean that it did not happen once. And why would a historian have a problem with a reality of history taking place only once? After all, there was, and could be, only one first landing on the moon.

What Jesus demonstrated was unparalleled. What He did, He did once. Just like the prophet Zechariah foretold. Jesus humbly rode into Jerusalem on a donkey at the beginning of Passover week, not to conquer Jerusalem with a swift right hand and demand worship, but to conquer sin and death the greatest enemy we all face. The Son of God, God incarnate, came humbly to win your heart by giving His life in death and resurrection, paying the debt of sin on the cross and through His resurrection providing the power over sin — all because He loves you. Incredible!

You know what all of this means?

In short, God wants to give you His love. Himself. Forgiveness. Hope beyond the grave. He came to make all things new! But He won’t force Himself on you. He gives you a choice. Open your heart to Jesus Christ through repentance and faith. You won’t regret it!