Bulletin: Week of June 21
Morning Worship Service
Sunday, June 21, 2015
Dr. J Robert Cosand
SOLA GRATIA (The Wonder of Divine Grace)
Verse for the Week
"Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye." Matthew 7:3-5
Missions Update: June 2015
Rick and Connie Stomps
AWANA Clubs International
12298 North State Road
Otisville, MI 48463
Greetings from Otisville,
This past year seems like a blur. We were busy with events, visiting churches & pastors, presenting AWANA to interested churches and lots of training opportunities. It was special to get together with missionaries from 3 other states for a few days of meetings. Missions Conferences are always a highlight - we were blessed and encouraged. God has worked in scores of hearts... adults and kids trusting Jesus as their personal Savior & many believers were revived. We also celebrated 30 years as missionaries and 44 years of marriage.
The Schemes of the Devil - meditation on Ephesians 6:11
In a well-known verse, Christians are commanded to "put on the whole armor of God that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil" (Eph 6:11). The devil has schemes. He is subtle and diabolical. By his deception he makes things appear different than the way they really are. To put it bluntly, the devil is a liar and people who believe what he says die, in the fullest sense of that word.
1 Peter 5:8 describes Satan as being like a hungry lion, looking for someone to devour. Jesus said to Peter, "Peter, Satan desires to sift you like wheat" (Lk 22:31). Ephesians 6 talks about the devil hurling flaming darts at believers (Eph 6:16). But what is the reality behind these figures of speech? How does Satan sift people like wheat? How does he devour people? What are the darts he throws?
The main strategy the devil uses against unbelievers is to blind their minds from seeing the truth. He lies to them about what is true and encourages them to believe things that are false. "In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God" (2 Cor 4:4). That is not to say that unbelievers are unwilling subjects to this deception. They willingly follow falsehood and choose lies because they really do not love God, nor want Him, nor His truth. When we pray for our unbelieving friends or family members, we must pray that the Spirit of God will open their eyes and give them a thirst for the living God.
Looking Toward Heaven, Living on Earth
Probably all of us are much like the Apostle Peter. In the midst of the storm he ventured out of the boat, to walk on water with Jesus, only to take his eyes off the Lord and begin to sink. Our focus on Heaven probably isn’t a constant, it probably wavers as well.
When you listen to the news, or hear stories about all the violence, evil, and horror that is life on Planet Earth, if you are like me, you long for Heaven. Hearing news about a fellow believer that has fallen into sin, or a marriage breaking up, or getting a glimpse of our own sinfulness can bring the promises of Heaven to mind.
Revelation 21:4 says, “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” An old commentator has said, “Tears, death, sorrow, crying, pain and suffering, these came into existence through sin, and all these things, the effects of sin, are now gone. What relief and what joy!” How different our existence will be in Heaven, when the promise of this verse comes to pass, as well as countless other promises.