Following Jesus Together - May 19
Thank you for your prayers for your family while we were away. We look forward to seeing you all this coming Sunday! Please continue to pray for my health. Since the pollen hit in May, my lungs have been irritated, causing shortness of breath and fatigue.
And as always, we as elders strive to be with and pray for you. Please do not hesitate to call the office or one of the elders!
Saturday – Please pray for the upcoming Presbytery meeting that we are hosting here on Saturday!
Sunday School – Brandon Perkins is going to lead a discussion on praying God’s providence at 9:00am. Hope to see you there!
Just consider Revelation 8:4 – the prayers of the church are portrayed as incense rising up into God’s throne room. His response is thunder, lightning and earthquakes. This is why Eugene Peterson calls prayer, “Reversed Thunder.”
God’s providential care and protection and rule over all things is the reason we pray. He chooses, graciously to use our prayers, to shake the earth and make Jesus known.
Worship 10:00am – “Nobody Left Out” – Romans 3:9-20 – Pastor Jim is finishing up Paul’s grand summary of what is wrong with us and the world. Why spend so much time dwelling on the bad news?
1 – The gospel of Jesus becomes ‘good news!’ Jesus’ active obedience, loving God and loving sinners, becomes more shocking and beautiful as He does what we cannot. Jesus’ passive obedience, his suffering on our behalf, shines brighter, showing us how loved we really are.
2 – Part of the Bible’s description of humans is that the venom of asps on our tongues. Where does that poison come from? The heart, according to the Psalms (140) & Jesus (Mark 7:14-23). We need the diagnosis of sin to go deep to see how God’s cure for sin, grace through faith in Jesus, goes to work to heal and change us.
I’ll leave you with some good quotes by Cornelius Plantinga, Jr. on sin to meditate on:
“Sin is not only the breaking of law but also the breaking of covenant with one’s savior. Sin is the smearing of a relationship, the grieving one’s divine parent and benefactor, a betrayal of the partner to whom one is joined by a holy bond. (See Exodus 32-34).
“All sin has first and finally a Godward force…a sin is any act – any though, desire, emotion, word or deed – or its particular absence, that displeases God and deserves blame. Let us add that the disposition to commit sins also displeases God and deserves blame, and let us therefore us ethe word sin to refer to such instances of both act and disposition. Sin is a culpable and personal affront to a personal God.”
~Cornelius Plantinga Jr., A Breviary of Sin
God’s answer to all of what is wrong with us and the world: Romans 3:21-26 – But now…the righteousness of God has been revealed apart from the law… all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith.
Enjoy God’s grace in Christ to us today,