Our Bible study in the Welcome and Ruth classes focused on Mark 11 with Jesus’ expectations of His followers to remove obstacles to prayer. We studied that as He came to the temple to worship, He found it being used as what we would refer to today as a commerce center.
He was teaching them: “Is it not written, My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations?” Mark 11:17a
As we continued into the sanctuary it was such an encouragement to see Pastor David and others praying at the altar and in their pews. Let all of us continue to remember Jesus’ words that we are to pray without ceasing for ourselves and others. Our spiritual growth to reach others for Christ depends on it.
The Jewish Passover was near so Jesus was in Jerusalem. In the temple area He saw many things taking place that had turned His Father’s house into a marketplace.
The problems were:
Loss of reverence for God
People had lost cost of serving God
Loss of the sense of the Gentiles’ needs
The temple leaders were upset and wanted a sign from God to show the authority with which Jesus spoke. Jesus told them to destroy the temple and He would raise it up in 3 days, referring to His own body.
If there is anything in our own life that is not right, look to Jesus to change it. Do people we see each day see Jesus in us? In the way we act and the words we speak? What do we need to do to reach others?
Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God. 2 Corinthians 7:1
My thoughts from Sunday’s message: This world will try to pull us away from God so we must be very diligent in our walk with Him. When you are truly sorrowful for your sins, you should come to Christ for forgiveness. Sorrow that lacks repentance results in spiritual death. God remembers when you came to him trembling and in fear and that you accepted Him into yourself. So we are to aim to be more like Jesus. Yes, it is hard but so much worth it. Our Father is with us every minute of every day. God is never away from you!
This was the title of Pastor David’s wonderful message.
Later that same day, Jesus left the house and went down to the shore, where an immense crowd soon gathered. He got into a boat and taught from it while the people listened on the beach. He used many illustrations such as this one in his sermon: “A farmer was sowing grain in his fields. As he scattered the seed across the ground, some fell beside a path, and the birds came and ate it. And some fell on rocky soil where there was little depth of earth; the plants sprang up quickly enough in the shallow soil, but the hot sun soon scorched them and they withered and died, for they had so little roots. Other seeds fell among thorns and the thorns choked out the tender blades. But some fell on good soil, and produced a crop that was thirty, sixty, and even a hundred times as much as he had planted. If you have ears, listen!” Matthew 13:1-9
“Now here is the explanation of the story I told about planting grain: The hard path where some of the seeds fell represents the heart of a person who hears the Good News about the Kingdom and doesn’t understand it; then Satan comes and snatches away the seeds from his heart. The shallow, rocky soil represents the heart of a man who hears the message and receives it with joy, but he doesn’t have much depth in his life, or persecution begins because of his beliefs, his enthusiasm fades, and he drops out. The ground covered with thistles represents a man who hears the message, but the cares of this life and his longing for money chock out God’s Word, and he does less and less for God. The good ground represents the heart of a man who listens to the message and understands it and goes out and brings thirty, sixty, or even a hundred others in the Kingdom.” Matthew 13:18-23
The parable of the soul and the soil. This is the first of 7 parables given by God. Are you a Good Listener? To listen is an active process. Jesus says…
There are four ways we receive God. 1-Don’t bother me, I’m busy with the crowd (v. 19) 2-Hip-hip hoorah for Jesus! No deep roots – fizzle out (vs. 20-21) 3-I love Jesus, But I love the world more- caught up in life, but this life doesn’t produce much truth. (v. 22) 4-I am willing to grow! I want to live my life for Jesus. Truly invested in the Kingdom of God. (v. 23) This life will produce fruits of the Holy Spirit. They are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
If we are believers, our fruits should show in us. Compare your life with these 4 types of soil…
What type of soul are you? Are you willing to LISTEN and do God’s will? Are you a child of God and do you have a relationship with HIM?
We celebrated the Senior Adults on this beautiful May Sunday morning. We have quite a few at CSBC.
Our message was entitled STAY THE COURSE, as there is no retiring from God. Life is a race to the finish line. There is no letting up as we become older. Our text was taken from Psalms 71:5-18, Isaiah 46:3-4 and Romans 15:13.
Pastor David spoke of days from the past that us older folks would remember, the ways we went to school, shopped, and worshiped. We seniors grew up in very different times and ways. Back in those days being asked to do something at church was an honor. We are told to love the church because God loves us. We must continue to work and never stop praising God for his faithfulness. We all have pain, sorrows, disappointments and struggles. Keep praising him in the midst of all these!
GOD is our one and only HOPE.
Pastor David reminded us to be aware of our duty to the next generation. We have a responsibility to proclaim the goodness of God and communicate what He has done for us. It shouldn’t end with us. Proclaim God’s might to those coming up behind you!
GOD is our one and only HOPE.
I came to Clear Spring when I was thirteen years old from my home Church of Reedy Fork. Here I had so many wonderful SS teachers ,GA leaders and many others that continued to nurture my Christian development. In my mind, I thought these wonderful people were old. They were not at that time, but I observed them for many years as they continued to serve this church. When they were no longer able to serve physically, they became prayer warriors for those that could. I want to give thanks for those that have already finished the race and heard these words…
“You have fought the good fight and finished the race. Well done, my good and faithful servant.”
As Pastor David said, “Don’t slow down, run the race to the end and bust down that tape!”
What is your Gospel? You may be confused with that question, but it really is a simple question. The word Gospel means “Good news.” The reason that the Gospel is good news is because of what Jesus did on the cross. He died for our sins so that we could have an eternity in Heaven with him instead of an eternity in Hell without him. This is good news.
This is AMAZING NEWS!
In the Book of Galatians, Paul is dealing with this. The people that he is writing to are being swayed by false preachers and are accepting false gospels. The false gospel being presented to them was Jesus plus something else. Or your works can somehow get you into heaven. Because of these false gospels there were many people who were turning away from their faith in Jesus Christ.
Think about this…What is the one thing that comes to your mind that would make you happier than anything else. This is your ultimate good news. If that thing makes you happier than your relationship with Jesus, then you are living your life for a false Gospel.
It’s not wrong to be happy about good news. It’s not wrong to have desires other than your desire for Jesus. We all have desires. This is normal. It becomes a problem when your desires become your source of salvation. Jesus plus something else is nothing it all. It’s all or nothing with Jesus. Jesus will not play second fiddle for anyone or anything.
The gospel of Jesus Christ is supposed to be good news. But why is it that we sometimes treat it like anything but? Why is it that we get more excited over a football game? Why is it that we get more excited about the stuff that we accumulate that will only fade over time? We show more excitement over things that ultimately don’t matter and will fade away over the one that will never fade. The one who is eternal and that’s Jesus.
The gospel is HIGH STAKES. My fear is that there are many people who are living their lives for a false gospel. A gospel that promises happiness but only leads to eternal ruin. Your gospel will either carry you to Heaven or drag you to Hell.
Ultimately there is only one true Gospel. That is the gospel of Jesus Christ. Do you truly know this Gospel? Is it enough for you? If it’s not then it may be time for a heart check.