That Beautiful Name

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“You didn’t want heaven without us, So Jesus, You brought heaven down…

My sin was great, Your love was greater, What could separate us now…

What a wonderful Name it is

The Name of Jesus Christ my King”

This has been one of those weeks, a time when sorrow and grief have clashed with Joy and Hope like a wave crashing onto the rocks in a storm. How is it that the heart can break and rejoice at the same time? The key is in the Power of His name… Jesus. The songwriter proclaims, “You have no rival, You have no equal, Now and forever… Our God reigns, Yours is the Kingdom, Yours is the glory, Yours is the Name, above all names… What a powerful Name it is.”

A fourth century monk named Telemachus from Asia is credited with halting the gladiatorial contests. Having come to reside in Rome where these ‘abominable spectacle were being exhibited’, he went himself into the stadium, and stepping down into the arena, endeavored to stop the men who were wielding their weapons against one another… all while crying out, “In the Name of Jesus Christ, Fordear!”.  The spectators of the slaughter were indignant, and inspired by “the triad fury of the demon that delights in those bloody deeds, stoned the peacemaker to death. When the emperor was informed of this, he numbered Telemachus in the number of victorious martyrs, and put an end to that impious spectacle.” What enables a man to place himself at deaths door for the sake of saving others lives? What principles must he believe? More importantly, what powerful truth did he proclaim that had such an indelible impact, causing such violence to cease and lives to be changed…? It is that powerful name, the name of Jesus, “that every knee should bow too, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” (Phil 2:10-11) Do you know that name, and I mean not just know ‘of it’, but do you intimately know Him, having by faith believed in His finished work of redemption? I hope so.

Do you want to withstand the storms of life? Can you rejoice as a loved one slips from your arms and walks through Heavens gates? Can you wait on God’s timing having trusted in His will and released your own? Do you desire to allow the crucible of suffering to refine you into His extraordinary character, enabling you to not only face the lions of this life, but to change their hearts as well? Then you must come to “know” Jesus and the power of His name.

I look forward to the day when those ‘who know His name’, sing this song together in the presence of the One whose name is Beautiful, our Lord Jesus Christ. I pray you are there too.

Choose wisely…

Praying 4 U

Written by David Brown: David Brown is a husband, father, and grandfather with a Masters of Religious Studies and a Professor of Philosophy and Comparative Religions. Dave is a member of Pemberton’s First Baptist Church.

The Daily Bible Reading: 1 Kings 14-18| You can download our 2017 Daily Bible Reading Plan by clicking here

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Daily Quote: “You were the Word at the beginning, One With God the Lord Most High, Your hidden glory in creation, Now revealed in You our Christ… What a beautiful Name it is… The Name of Jesus Christ my King.” – Hillsong

This Week’s Verse to Memorize:

“if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”
2 Chronicles 7:14

Praying 4 U

The Art of Being Out-Gunned | Part One


The Daily Bible Reading: Psalm 130; Proverbs 11

Daily Quote: To the natural man, the very notion of loving his enemies is an intolerable offence, and quite beyond his capacity: it cuts right across his ideas of good and evil. More important still, to man under the law, the idea of loving his enemies is clean contrary to the law of God, which requires men to sever all connection with their enemies and to pass judgement on them. Jesus, however, takes the law of God in His own hands and expounds its true meaning. The will of God, to which the law gives expression, is that men should defeat their enemies by loving them.” —Dietrich Bonhoeffer

This Week’s Verse to Memorize:

16 Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. ~2 Corinthians 4:16

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ASK A PRO

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As men go, we are always looking for the newest thing to improve our lives, new phone, new car, bigger house, new golf clubs to improve our game. GOLF CLUB? YUP. Years ago when I first started playing golf I thought that I could learn the game all on my own. After many rounds of playing with 30 year old hand me down clubs, I decided to upgrade to a new set of Ping irons and Taylormade woods. That would surely improve my game. Heeding the advice from a friend who played well that I should take a lesson from the golf pro at his club. Reluctantly I did. Telling the pro that when ever I used my driver that I always sliced the ball. Letting him know that I had just order new clubs to fix the problem he took my 30 year old driver and without even getting set took a swing at a ball and hit it 225 yards down the driving range, handed the club back to me and said, “IT’S NOT THE CLUB” I took several more lessons from that “PRO” on how to swing a club properly!

Psalm 119 says, : 9 How can a young man keep his way pure? By living according to your WORD. 10 I seek with all my heart, do not let me stray from your commands.

In our lives we all need some sort of lesson from a professional. I try to get a lesson every day of my life, from my Bible. Every word, every verse, every chapter, every book gives a lesson from the greatest professional that we could ever learn from. God’s word gives us the best instruction on how to live a fulfilled and happy life. What was your latest lesson on??

Written by Robert Breault: Robert is a full time staff member in our Food Service department.

The Daily Bible Reading: Psalm 125; Proverbs 6

Daily Quote: “The Lord is far from the wicked, but he hears the prayer of the righteous.” ~Proverbs 15:29

This Week’s Verse to Memorize:

15 For all things are for your sakes, that grace, having spread through the many, may cause thanksgiving to abound to the glory of God.~2 Corinthians 4:15

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Who Can Imagine Life Without Worry? Part #2

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“Don’t fret or worry. Instead of worrying, pray. Let petitions and praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God’s wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down. It’s wonderful what happens when Christ displaces worry at the center of your life.” ~Philippians 4:6-7 (MSG)

When I was with you last I was going on about freedom and how important it was for us to understand that Jesus came to set us free from sin. I also said I would get to “the most universal of all addictions” which is summed up in one word…worry. Worry is a verb that, according to The American Heritage Dictionary, means to feel uneasy about some uncertain or threatening matter; be troubled. Be troubled…hmm somehow I remember a story about a king-wanna-be saying he was troubled when a bunch of dudes showed up in his throne room and told him about a King that had been born. His worry leads him to what history calls “The Massacre of the Innocents.” Anyway…

Worry is something that gets done by us all in some way, shape or form. It can happen in the smallest way just as much as it does in the biggest. 20th Century theologian, John Stott comes right out and says that “worry is waste—a waste of time, thought and nervous energy.” Worry is so engrained into the human condition that we justify its existence much like other addictions however Jesus made it a point to address this “universal addiction” when He gave His Sermon on the Mount. He begins the dialogue with this key phrase, “No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” (Matthew 6:24)

Then Jesus will tell folks not to be anxious about their lives, what they’ll eat, what they’ll drink, and what they’ll wear. Now during those Roman Empire times dem’s was some everyday “where’s it gonna come froms” and now this guy says don’t worry about it ‘cos even the birds get fed by the hand of God. ALRIGHTY THEN…but Jesus doesn’t leave them hanging on thread, AU CONTRAIRE, He gives the straight up deal right here, “Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and He will give you everything you need.” (Matthew 6:33) So basically it is matter of perspective. Doom along the horizontal and hope in following the vertical.

Now don’t go sitting there thinking that I am advertising a worry-free Gospel and that I think this Christian life should be free of it, once again I say AU CONTRAIRE because there are things we can take worry or anxiousness to. We should take thought

for each other especially for those who we call brother or sister. We can be concerned for the things that are of The Church (that doesn’t include carpet color, wallpaper style or should there a chicken dinner versus a potluck dinner). We can be concerned for the eternal salvation of loved ones or the lost in an unsaved world but as with everything there are limits…” All things are lawful, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful, but not all things edify.” (1 Cor 10:23)

That about does it for me today but I am not completely done covering the universal addiction of worry. Next time I am with you I would like us to spend some time gleaning why Jesus made it a point to tell those in attendance during His Sermon on the Mount why being anxious in our everyday lives stunts our growth of faith. Until then why not take a look at Matthew Gospel 6:24-34 and see for yourself why Jesus would have use consider the issue of serving two masters. I think it is plausible to think that He knew that people had an enslavement to material security (we still do, don’t we?) and He came to give us assurances that set us free from stuff that has no eternal value. Bottom line…if it serves no purpose in eternity it is eternally useless. Amen?

Chris Hughes_FF 2016Written by Chris Hughes: Chris, a graduate of The Colony of Mercy (11-2003) is married (Kathy) with two adult children (Kevin and Karen) and has been a Freedom Fighter contributor since 2008.

 

The Daily Bible Reading: Psalm 105; Proverbs 13

Daily Quote: “God never intended His people to become prisoners to worry. Such an unbelieving, energy-draining addiction strangles our faith and makes us unable to bear fruit.” —Charles Swindoll.

This Week’s Verse to Memorize:

35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?36 As it is written:

“For Your sake we are killed all day long;
We are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.”

37 Yet in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.

~Romans 8:35-37

Idolatry of the Preacher 

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The life wrought in Christ is one of tremendous worth and elevation. We who have yielded to the Lordship of the Son of Man are commanded to conduct ourselves in such a way that the harmful things at enmity with God, no longer infiltrate our lives. A terrible plight on the Body of Christ is that of the idolatry found amongst its members. It manifests itself in many different ways, all equally grieving to the Spirit of God. When a shepherd of a flock is esteemed higher than God by the people of God, this is idolatry. The theocracy established by the Scriptures becomes perverted and the divine order of operation is undone. This will always result in great detriment to church and greatly affect the power of its people.

With the eyes of its people fixed on the pastor rather the LORD, the church will never be satisfied in its pursuit of spirituality. They will in effect be drinking for broken cisterns rather than from fountains of living water. This will permeate each area of their lives sapping them of the fruit of the Spirit and by consequence, preparing them for the works of the flesh. The longer we live there the more our salt will loses its saltines and therefore, be good for nothing but being trampled under the feet of men. How poor and unfulfilling is the man who looks to his sinful brother to be his god.

Yes, it is surely true that we are to honor our pastors with a special reverence but God forbid we worship a person rather than our Creator. Remember that they are but men, pray for them to continually point the people God has given them to our Saviour. Stay rooted in the Scripture, be a Berean, always check what is taught for yourself. Ask questions, join a small group, pray, pray and pray. You would do well to take heed and lastly, ask of God to reveal Himself to you in a deeper way. Trust that when you see Him for who He is, mere men will no longer impress you the way they once did and “the things of earth will grow strangely dim.”


Written by Troy Fink:
Troy is a graduate of the Colony of Mercy and is an Urban Missionary at New Hope Philly in Philadelphia.

The Daily Bible Reading: Psalm 94; Proverbs 2

Daily Quote:

Turn your eyes upon Jesus, 

Look full in His wonderful face,

And the things of earth will grow strangely dim,

In the light of His glory and grace.

-Helen H. Lemmel

This Week’s Verse to Memorize:

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things? ~Romans 8:31-32