Being Pentecost Sunday, Pastor Steve focused his message on the Holy Lord and the role He plays in our lives. Pastor noted that Jesus Christ knew the disciples would be feeling lost and confused after he was crucified so he had told the disciples that he would send them The Advocate. The word Pentecost means 50 and it is celebrated 50 days after the resurrection of our Savior. It is the day that Jesus gave the Holy Spirit to his disciples. Scripture tells us that the Advocate arrived in a rush of wind and flame to fortify the disciples, who remained gathered together for ten days after Jesus' resurrection and according to his direction. Jesus did not abandon them and sent the disciples The Advocate so that they would have the strength, courage, and wisdom they needed to carry forth the message of the good news of Jesus Christ to new lands and to people who spoke different languages. This inspirational message gives hope to everyone as Pastor explains how the disciples, from all walks of life, experienced a "tremendous drenching in Jesus' power" and how we are encouraged to look for the Holy Spirit within ourselves as we strive to walk in the footsteps of our Savior. The message ends with some heartfelt words on the importance of Memorial Day and prayers that our nation continues as "One Nation Under God" so that our children may know the blessings for freedom that only comes with sacrifice and sacrifice that only comes with and through great spiritual love.
Pastor Steve noted that the highest conversations we have with God, our prayers, require only an open heart. We don't need a SMART phone or complex technology because God has given us a part of Himself, through the presence of His beloved Son, to comfort and strengthen us. Our Savior told us that we can talk to God anywhere and anytime. God only asks us to invite Him in to our lives and have faith--He will not forsake us. Jesus ascended into Heaven but he said that he would send the Advocate to help us in our weakness and to intercede on our behalf according to God's Will. This wonderful sermon shares the message that Jesus is very much with us, with goodness, mercy, and love at the center of our Savior's work with us.
Pastor Steve reminded those in attendance at the special Mother’s Day Service that Jesus embodied the pure essence of love and obedience to God—qualities that we honor and strive to emulate on Mother’s Day and throughout life. 1 John tells us that we love because God first loved us. Our Savior Jesus Christ gave us two commandments, and both centered on love: to love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, soul, and mind; and to love your neighbor as yourself. Pastor’s sermon focused on John 14: 15-21:
Jesus Promises the Holy Spirit
“If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—the Spirit of truth.The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day, you will realize that I am in my Father,and you are in me, and I am in you. Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me.The one who loves me will be loved by my Father,and I too will love them and show myself to them.”
Jesus sends the Great Comforter and Advocate to his disciples to help them carry on and to strengthen them for the work ahead. Jesus' love for his disciples extends beyond the grave and he is right beside us today. This inspiring message is for mothers and fathers and their children, and for all who aspire to honor our Savior’s teachings through obedience to God and His Commandments.
John 14: 1-14 was the focus of Pastor Steve’s message on May 7. “Let not your heart be troubled,” is the first verse of John 14. Pastor Steve noted that not letting your heart be troubled is easier said than done in this world. Pastor further elaborated that Emmanuel means “God with Us” and Jesus promised to be with his followers even to the end of the age. Pastor added that, whether it is through reaching old age and the end of our days, or whether it is the promise of Jesus’ Second Coming, we can hold on to our Savior’s promise to be with us. As part of his sermon, he gave statistics on the suicide rate in the United States and advised those listening that it is wise to look for strong anchor points in our lives. Life is full of trials and tribulations but Christians know that they can look to their Savior and pray for strength to come through the storms and trials in this life. Christians have an opportunity to model trust in God and His promises and to help others to trust in God’s providence.
Legalization of Biblical knowledge and actions of faith versus God’s Grace is the topic of Guest Speaker Jim Gans’ message, or Bible Study as he calls it, delivered on April 30. Fourteen Bible verses are part of this talk and used to illustrate the importance of the central scriptural focus:
“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.” (Ephesians 2: 8-9)
This wonderful message will help to get you on the right path, whether you are a new or veteran Christian striving to walk in the footsteps of our Savior Jesus Christ.
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