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POD - Psalm 13

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Psalm 13

13:1 How long, Yahweh?

Will you forget me forever?

How long will you hide your face from me?

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13:2 How long shall I take counsel in my soul,

having sorrow in my heart every day?

How long shall my enemy triumph over me?

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13:3 Behold, and answer me, Yahweh, my God.

Give light to my eyes, lest I sleep in death;

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13:4 Lest my enemy say, “I have prevailed against him”;

Lest my adversaries rejoice when I fall.

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13:5 But I trust in your loving kindness.

My heart rejoices in your salvation.

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13:6 I will sing to Yahweh,

because he has been good to me.

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Think Spot - 17 June 2019

 

“God blesses those who work for peace,

for they will be called the children of God.”

Matthew 5:9


All over the world, people share a common desire for peace. But what is peace? The peace the world wants varies from the peace the Christian knows. The world sees peace as the absence of conflict and people being generally ‘nice’ to one another. Peace in the Christian context goes further, saying peace is perfect harmony with God, other people, circumstances and self. Therefore, perfect peace will not come until Jesus Christ comes again, and takes Christians to be with Him.

That doesn't give us as Christians a mandate to sit around not doing what we can for peace, because we are commanded to be peacemakers (Matthew 5:9), our God is a God of peace (1 Thessalonians 5:23), and the Kingdom of God is about peace in the Holy Spirit (Romans 14:17). Peace is to be our business. In a world full of conflicts, such as conflicts between nations, conflicts between neighbours, conflicts even within families and conflicts within and between churches, Christians are to be peacemakers.

With that in mind, here are some thoughts on what the Bible has to say on peace, to help you this week be a peacemaker:

1. Peace with God

  • Justified by faith (Romans 5:1-2)
  • Christ is our peace between God and man and between men (Ephesians 2:13-18)


2. Peace with others

  • Live at peace with everyone (Romans 12:17-20)
  • Do everything possible which leads to peace and mutual encouragement (Romans 14:13-19)
  • Be a peacemaker - a sign of real wisdom producing a harvest of righteousness (Matthew 5:9, James 3:17-18)


3. Peace within/circumstances

  • Peace is a gift of God (John 14:27, 2 Thessalonians 3:16)
  • Worldly peace requires manipulation of circumstances, God's peace comes regardless of circumstances
  • We have peace in troubled times - an untroubled, unfearful heart and mind (John 16:33)


Go in peace this Monday, into this week, knowing that the God of peace lives inside you if you are one of His children. Yesterday churches around the world celebrated the feast of Pentecost – the coming of the Holy Spirit as promised by Jesus. If you desire peace with God, with others and in all circumstances, ask this Holy Spirit who lives inside you to help you. If you would not consider yourself as one of His children, ask Him to help you become one.

Father, I pray that this week we will do all we can to be peacemakers and make a difference in world in conflict. I ask this through the Prince of Peace, Jesus Christ and in the power of the Holy Spirit who lives inside all those who have peace with you. Amen

 

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TOS.jpgTeachings of Seraphim

 
Part 3. Faith

 

Faith, according to the teachings of St. Antioch, is the beginning of our union with God: the true believers are the stone of the church of God, prepared for the edifice of God the Father, which is raised up to the heights by the power of Jesus Christ, that is, by the Cross and help of the grace of the Holy Spirit.

"Faith without works is dead" (James 2:26). The works of faith are love, peace, longsuffering, mercy, humility, bearing one’s cross and life by the spirit. True faith cannot remain without works. One who truly believes will also surely perform good works.

An excerpt from the teachings of Seraphim of Sarov of the 18th & 19th centuries. He was one of the most renowned Russian saints in the Eastern Orthodox Church. Seraphim extended the monastic teachings of contemplation, theoria and self-denial to the layperson.

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Studies of Ruth

Study 2 - WOW Obedience!

Firstly, her obedience is surprising - it has a wow factor to it! The harmony between Ruth and her mother-in-law is even more appealing when we consider the two unusual facets that could have driven them apart.

Firstly, Mahlon, the natural connecting link between Ruth and Naomi was dead (Ruth 1 :3-5). Nothing specific is mentioned about the way the two women got along with each other while he was alive during those years in Moab. Instead, the story begins with the development of their relationship after Mahlon's death and at the time of the women's departure for Judah.

The second part of this wow, is that could have driven them apart was that Ruth was from Moab. A brief review of the history of this neighbouring nation proves that its land and people were clearly off limits for the Jews. The founding father Moab was the result of Lot's incestuous union with his older daughter (Genesis 19:37). Though Moab was not on the list of nations to be entirely destroyed by the Israelites under Joshua, its worship of false gods were offensive and troublesome (Numbers 25). Judges 3 relates that Eglon the king of Moab, received power from the Lord to punish Israel for eighteen years. When the people of Israel again cried out to God, the Lord raised up the judge Ehud, to kill Eglon and defeat Moab, to bring peace for eighty years.

The story of Ruth as we have heard already, is placed at the time of the Judges. Elimelech's decision to take his family into Moab to escape the famine in Israel probably occurred at a time when Moab was subdued, or at least not hostile towards Israel. However, God, had told the Israelites not to marry into the surrounding nations or join in their worship of false gods. The fact that Naomi's sons chose Moabite women shows that they ignored this instruction. It also indicates the attraction of foreign influences to the Israelites, which God wanted them to stay away from. But we also see mercy in grafting into his line of blessing one Moabite because of her faith and obedience to Him.

Naomi had two daughters-in-law, Ruth and Orpah. In view of their position as Moabite widows, it may seem that Orpah's decision to return to her own mother's house was more natural than Ruth's when Naomi announced her determination to go back to Bethlehem in Judah. We could even argue that Orpah, after politely offering to accompany Naomi, was acting in accord with her mother-in-law's wishes by remaining in Moab with her own people. Ruth, however, clung to Naomi and refused to leave her. But Orpah's obedience was shallow, as her offer to go with Naomi was done out of duty not of love, and Naomi probably saw this and declined Orpah's offer. Ruth however, remained to finish her story and claim a place in the genealogy of David and also of Jesus (Matthew 1:5).

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Friday Prayers

14 June 2019

Order of Service

 Opening prayer

Praise time

Prayers for those grieving and lonely

Prayers for justice and peace

Prayers for those facing challenging situations

Prayers for churches and Christians worldwide

Prayers for healing

Time of silence for your own prayers

Benediction

 

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Pulp Theology 11

PulpTheology Book

WOW Words of the Bible

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In the Bible, there are some amazing words which almost compel the reader to go “WOW!” In this little book, we explore together 50 such words of WOW. Why? We do this so that as we seek to know the God worship, we can put this knowledge into practise of our lives and be obedient to Him. So that as Christians, we can live lives which are worthy of Him, and where all factors of WOW go to Him alone.

The words we will look at together are: Adoption, Angels, Baptism, Born Again, Christ, Covenant, Disciple, Doctrine, Faith, Fellowship, Forgiveness, Giving, Goal, God Of Judgment, God Of Love, Grace, Growing, Heaven, Holiness, Idolatry, Jesus’ Cross, Joy, Judgment, Justification, Living, Lord’s Supper, Love, Meekness, Natures, Partake, Peace, Perseverance, Propitiation, Remember, Repentance, Resurrection, Salvation, Satan, Serving, Shepherd, Sin, Sovereignty Of God, Spiritual Armour, Spiritual Gifts, Stewardship, Temptation, Trinity, Truth, Worship, Your Cross.

Come inside and let’s go WOW together for God!

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WOW Word - Meekness

Alfie brings you a WOW Word

WOW Word - Meekness

 

Matthew 5:5, Jesus said "You're blessed when you're content with just who you are—no more, no less. That's the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can't be bought." In other words: “Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth.”

 

It must be said right from the beginning that meekness is NOT weakness. It takes a strong character to deliberately set aside their rights. For example Moses was the meekest man in all the earth (Number 12:1-3) and Moses was not a weak willed character! Meekness is accepting God's dealings with us as good, without dispute or resistance. Meekness is effectively trusting God to be God!

 

The Christian disciple is to be a person who claims no rights of their own, and who is willing to yield all possessions and personal rights to God. The Christian disciple sees possessions as being loaned to them by God for His work & glory. We see this in Jesus’ example (Philippians 2:5-6) and also in the early church (Acts 5:12). It is also a necessary part of carrying our cross as Jesus commanded in Luke 9:23

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But why should Christian disciples give up their rights? 

 

Download the audio mp3 to hear what Alphy the WOWChurch Cat has to say about this intriguing WOW Word - Meekness!

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POD - Psalm 16

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Psalm 16

1 Preserve me, O God: for in thee do I put my trust.

2 O my soul, thou hast said unto the LORD, Thou art my Lord: my goodness extendeth not to thee;

3 But to the saints that are in the earth, and to the excellent, in whom is all my delight.

4 Their sorrows shall be multiplied that hasten after another god: their drink offerings of blood will I not offer, nor take up their names into my lips.

5 The LORD is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup: thou maintainest my lot.

6 The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant places; yea, I have a goodly heritage.

7 I will bless the LORD, who hath given me counsel: my reins also instruct me in the night seasons.

8 I have set the LORD always before me: because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.

9 Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoiceth: my flesh also shall rest in hope.

10 For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.

11 Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.

 

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Think Spot 10 June 2019

 

Time continues to march ever on - one second at a time! Each of us can make a difference in this world. Are you aware of that?

One of the most well-known bible verses is when Jesus says “Love your neighbour as yourself.” But did you know he is actually quoting from Leviticus 19:18b "love your neighbour as yourself. I am the Lord."

What does that mean for us today?

As Christians we are to live right lives - to be holy. That is a fundamental about being a Christian. It means being practical and loving others - not just in words but in action. Not just saying I love you but showing that you do. It means sometimes doing things we don't want to do. Or not doing things we want to do. It means putting others first and ourselves last. It means not showing favouritism – to the rich or the poor, to the beautiful and the not so beautiful.

Loving others as yourself, does not mean loving yourself less. It means loving others more. It means holding the interests of others higher than your own. It means honouring others above yourself.

How are you doing at loving others - all others? Are you loving others generously & selflessly? Or are you saying you love them, but only on your own terms or only in words and not in action. Loving them selfishly by putting your own needs first and others after yourself.

Here is a challenge for you. Go into this new week determined to love others – all others – without favouritism. Each of us has ways in which we feel the love of others. We all have our own needs & wants. Ask somebody else today that what it is that you could do for them that would make them feel that they are loved and valued. You may well be surprised that it is something very simple and you would never have found out what it was unless you had asked.

Let's be committed to showing practical love to all we meet - one person at a time. Imagine the difference that could make to the world! WOW!

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TOS.jpgTeachings of Seraphim

 
The Reasons for Christ’s Coming

Jesus Christ came because of:

1. God's love towards the human race: "For so God loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son" (John 3:16);

2. The restoration of the image and likeness of God in fallen man;

3. The salvation of human souls: "For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved" (John 3:17).

And so, we, following the goals of our Redeemer, the Lord Jesus Christ, must lead our lives according to His Godly teaching, in order to save our souls by it.

An excerpt from the teachings of Seraphim of Sarov of the 18th & 19th centuries. He was one of the most renowned Russian saints in the Eastern Orthodox Church. Seraphim extended the monastic teachings of contemplation, theoria and self-denial to the layperson.

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