A story in National Geographic several years ago gives us a beautiful and penetrating picture of God’s protective wings covering His children. After a forest fire in Yellowstone National Park, forest rangers began their trek up a mountain to assess the inferno’s damage. One ranger found a bird literally petrified in ashes, perched statuesquely on the ground at the base of a tree. Somewhat sickened by the eerie sight, the ranger reached out to knock the bird over with a stick. As he gently struck it, three tiny chicks scurried from under their dead mother’s wings. The loving mother, keenly aware of impending disaster, had carried her offspring to the base of the tree and had gathered them under her wings, instinctively knowing that the toxic smoke would rise. She could have flown to safety, but she refused to abandon her babies. When the blaze reached her, the heat had scorched her small body, but the mother had remained steadfast; because she had been willing to die, those under the cover of her wings had lived.
The Psalmist beautifully illustrates God’s protective love and care for each of us in Psalm 91:4, “He shall cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you shall take refuge”.
As His children, let’s remember the One who truly loves us (Romans 5:5-10), and then be different from the masses of the world because of that love (2 Corinthians 6:14-18).
There are a number of passages of scripture which connect faith with salvation from sin. For example, the gospel “Is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth.” (Romans 1:16) And again, “By grace are ye saved through faith”
(Ephesians 2:8). There are also a number of passages which connect baptism with salvation from sin. For example, “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved.” (Mark 16:16) And again, “Repent, and be baptized…for the remission of sins.” (Acts 2:38) Also, “Baptism doth also now save us.” (1 Peter 3:21)
Which are we to believe? It’s not an either or question – we are to believe both. It is pointless to talk about being saved by faith, if one does not believe what God, in His word, has to say about baptism. As for me, I accept all the Bible has to say and reject any man-made theology which would pit one passage against another. Jesus said, “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved.” (Mark 16:16) And that settles it for me.
Some time back we asked the congregation to submit names for possible additional elders and deacons. The process has taken considerable time, but there is a good reason. The men whom you selected recognized the seriousness of the responsibility they would be undertaking, and so, took time to think about it, talk with their family and then after due consideration made a decision. Of the individuals whom you named, the following have agreed to serve:
Elder: Phil Forrest
Deacons: Jered Markman
Sunday, September 29, has been selected as the day in which these men will be appointed to serve the congregation. If anyone has any questions or comments, feel free to speak to any one of the elders or, if preferred, feel free to meet with us all.
Imagine waking up one day and seeing a shiny new digital camera on the floor. You notice that it has a tiny opening, called an aperture, that lets in light. The aperture is covered by a shutter, which regulates the length of time light is allowed though the aperture. The camera also has a lens to focus the image, and a memory card to store the image. What would you think if your science teacher said that your camera simply evolved by time and chance? Even though it looks like it has been designed and it works perfectly, you are asked to believe that the camera had no designer or creator, but is the product of evolution. Such a thought is absurd. No sane person would argue that your new camera evolved naturally over millions of years. Likewise, no one can rightly conclude that the human eye is the product of evolution.
The truth is, your sense of sight is a blessing from God, and it is evidence of His existence. Doctors have studied it for centuries, and are awestruck by its complex design. The human eye is far better than any camera. So much so that even Charles Darwin had to admit: “To suppose that the eye…could have been formed by natural selection, seems, I freely confess, absurd in the highest sense.”
Apologetics Press (http://www.apologeticspress.org/)
Some people complain because God put thorns on roses, while others praise Him for putting roses on thorns.
Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any
virtue and if there is anything
meditate on these things.