Matthew 24:12 And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. What a verse with such a truth that it chills the very bones. Sin grows and the heart grows cold. Many will allow sin to so fill their heart and life that they will not love God like they once did. They will allow sin to crowd out love. I have seen this happen in my life. I have allowed myself to get caught up in other things and lose sight of what is important. Let's be careful today not to allow sin to take hold in our hearts. Sin comes at too high a price. It chills our heart, steals our love and we do not want that to happen.
Matthew 18:20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. What a tremendous promise we have in this verse. He will meet with us. It is not about having a great number but rather a great promise. He is with us. He meets with us. They could know that He would be there for them. The next time you are in a worship service you can count on the fact that He is there, literally. That is what He said. We gather in His name. He comes. He hears us. He is blessed. We are blessed.
Matthew 19:29 And every one that hath forsaken houses, or brethren, or sisters, or father, or mother, or wife, or children, or lands, for my name's sake, shall receive an hundredfold, and shall inherit everlasting life. The disciples were thinking of all that they had given up to follow Jesus. They wondered if in the long run it was going to be worth it. He promised them that serving Him was of great value. We can never do more for Him that He has done and is doing for us. We leave our homes to serve Him. He promises us more. We give our money and He promises us more than money. He is a good God and He will never let you out give Him or out love Him. What a God we serve!
Matthew 17:23 And they shall kill him, and the third day he shall be raised again. And they were exceeding sorry. When they heard that Jesus would be killed they were sorry. They didn't probably catch or pay attention to the fact that He would rise again. Or maybe they just didn't believe that He would literally be alive again. It is hard to believe that He will conquer death literally. They also didn't understand after all this time that His dying was how they were going to live. He would conquer death and the grave. He would conquer sin. He would give them eternal life which He had talked about so many times. They were sorry and I understand. I often do not catch the real import or teaching of Scripture. I hear one thing and do not pay attention to the rest of the story!
We had a great week with Sam Wilson, missionary to Jewish people, as he taught and preached Â on soul winning. There is a great need to reach not only the world with the gospel. We were challenged as a church to do more to reach our community and shown ways to reach Jews in our community. Thursday Brother Sam brought a challenging message during the regular church service. Friday he met with the missionaries serving with Vision Baptist Missions on reaching Jews for four hours. Saturday he again met with the church on reaching Jews and outreach in general for four hours. Sunday he brought two more challenging messages on outreach. We pray that if you were here you were challenged and will commit with many who have already in our church to do more to reach people in our community! We want to see fifty souls saved this year! Please be in prayer and be sharing the gospel so that we may see this goal reached!
Matthew 16:26 For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? This world is temporary. Eternity is forever. If you have all that this world offers you will still be a loser. You may not face that fact or believe it till it comes time to die but you will eventually believe. You want to live. You have a desire to live. You will live forever some where. This life ends physically but it never ends literally. You will live forever in blessing or in cursing. You will live forever with God or outside His presence and blessing. Now think about it. What are you worth? What is your eternal destiny worth? It is time to count what really counts and value what has real value. Trust Christ today!
Matthew 14:14 And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick. I love how we see Jesus caring about people and their needs. He saw the crowds of people. He loved them. He helped them. He healed their sick. He really cared. He was moved with compassion. Do you realize that He loves you? He cares! He feels your hurts. He wants to solve your problem. He is a wonderful, loving, kind, God that will meet your needs if you will simply believe!
Matthew 11:20 Then began he to upbraid the cities wherein most of his mighty works were done, because they repented not: They refused to repent. He had shown His power. He had shown His mighty works and they had refused to repent. Jesus was upset that they would not repent. He scolded them for not repenting. Evidently they knew they had done wrong. They knew that they could repent. They had the power to repent but they didn't want to repent. You know that God deals with your heart about your sin. You, too, have the power to repent. You know what is right. If you do not get right with God it is no one's fault but your own.
Matthew 8:34 And, behold, the whole city came out to meet Jesus: and when they saw him, they besought him that he would depart out of their coasts. By casting out the demons Jesus had just destroyed their business. They could never like or even put up with a man that affect their money, their income, their bottom line. They wanted Jesus gone. Is that a problem you face? Is your problem with the Lord the fact that He affects your standard of living? Do you want and protect your money more than you do your love for God? The beautiful thing is that when Jesus comes near later they will want to meet Him and learn from Him. This will be because the man who had the demons has shown them that Jesus has changed His life.
Malachi 4:6 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, And the heart of the children to their fathers, Lest I come and smite the earth with a curse. The last thing mentioned in the Old Testament, just before the word curse is a family ministry! Elijah would come. He would preach. He would remind them of the Word of God, the ministry of Moses. They would repent or else. If they repented then they wouldn't fall under the curse. If not they would be cursed. Good ministry should help strengthen our families. As men turn their hearts towards God they will turn them towards their family. As children turn towards God they will turn toward their parents. God will make all the difference.
We had a great Easter/ Resurrection Sunday! We set a new Sunday morning attendance record with 322 people in attendance in all services. The main service had almost 200 in attendance while the Spanish ministry had another great week with almost 50 people! We are so excited how God has been blessing our church and how we have felt His presence during our services! This Sunday morning we had a Spirit filled song service with powerful special singing, and to cap it off Pastor Gardner preached a dynamicÂ message, Death has lost its Victory! Jesus came to earth and He conquered death, and by conquering death He has given life to all! We hope you will join us for a special day, May 7th, as we have our annual Friend Day at the Park! It will be a great time of fun and fellowship and would love to have you as our guest.
Zechariah 14:12 And this shall be the plague wherewith the LORD will smite all the people That have fought against Jerusalem; Their flesh shall consume away while they stand upon their feet, And their eyes shall consume away in their holes, And their tongue shall consume away in their mouth. I think that many might wonder why I and so many others believe that we should love and respect the nation of Israel and Jerusalem but here is your answer. God will protect them. Can you imagine such a horrible treatment, judgment? They fight against Jerusalem. God causes their eyes to consume away in their holes. Their tongue, their flesh will just be eaten away. Sounds like Hiroshima way before then. I do not believe this has happened yet. Therefore you can know that God loves Israel and will protect them. Such a punishment has probably never happened. Look for it. It is coming.
Zechariah 13:6 And one shall say unto him, What are these wounds in thine hands? Then he shall answer, Those with which I was wounded in the house of my friends. Jesus was wounded. Zechariah knew before hand that all this would happen. God told His men what to write. They were teaching the future and it was right and true. Jesus came to earth and lived as a Jewish person. His people didn't receive Him when He came at His birth. They didn't accept Him when He preached. He was rejected and wounded by His own. I can never think that I am any better because I would easily have done the same thing. I have done the same thing. He did die because of my sin. So I am guilty and my sin put Him there.
Zechariah 12:10 And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, The spirit of grace and of supplications: And they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, And they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, And shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn. God is going to pour out His grace on Israel once again. They will see their sin and turn from their sin to Him. They will look on Jesus, the One they will have pierced, and mourn for Him. Their hearts will be broken that they could have been so foolish to have rejected Him. The beautiful thing is that grace will be poured out and they will see their sin and turn. God loves them in spite of their foolishness. We should all consider the One that was pierced for us. We should think about Him and talk about Him. He is worthy!
Zechariah 11:16 For, lo, I will raise up a shepherd in the land, Which shall not visit those that be cut off, Neither shall seek the young one, Nor heal that that is broken, Nor feed that that standeth still: But he shall eat the flesh of the fat, And tear their claws in pieces. Can you believe how Go was punishing His people. He said He would raise up a shepherd for His people that would not help them. The ones that are lost, cut off, out of the picture will be ignored. He will not take care of the young and weak. He will not heal the broken. He will not feed the sheep. He will just eat and take advantage of them. These are often the types of pastors that God's people have today. It is as though our sin has brought this horrible spiritual leadership on each of us! As a pastor I know that I want to do better and not be anything like this guy. I want to love God and His people. Are there any lessons you can learn in this verse?
This past Sunday morning we were excited to have 278 people in attendance with almost 160 people in our main service! Pastor preached a great message out of Mark on Judas in preparation for this upcoming Easter Sundayâ€™s message. Judas was so close to Jesus and missed Him. Donâ€™t miss out of a real relationship with Him! We kicked off our newest Sunday School (Adult Bible Fellowship) class this week. The Desi Bible fellowship will be reaching the constantly growing Indian community around Alpharetta and the surrounding areas. Be in prayer that God will continue to bless us in our goal to reach our community with the gospel. We also had a new member join our church, Jens Looney. Jens has been a member of the Our Generation Training Center for a year and a half and has been faithfully helping out in many areas including cleaning the church. Jens has been a blessing to our church already in his attitude he brings to the church and we are excited to see him continue to grow as a member of our church. We hope to see you this upcoming Easter morning as we celebrate Jesusâ€™ resurrection. Be in prayer for [â€¦]
Zechariah 9:10 And I will cut off the chariot from Ephraim, And the horse from Jerusalem, And the battle bow shall be cut off: And he shall speak peace unto the heathen: And his dominion shall be from sea even to sea, And from the river even to the ends of the earth. God is going to remove all the defenses and instruments of war. He is going to stop all the war making effort. He is going to speak peace even to the heathen, the pagans, the Gentiles, all those that do not follow Him. He will rule and reign all over the world. There will not be a place where He is not ruling. God is moving and He will win. He is not defeated. He is not losing. He knows exactly what He is doing and where He is doing it. It is time to look to Him and trust Him. We are on the winning side. I also love that in this passage He tells us that He planned to speak peace to us that were not born a part of His people. He loves us and speaks peace to us!
Zechariah 6:9 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, As I read my Bible this morning I think about how I want to hear God speaking. He speaks through His Word but I love the days that I am praying and in desperate need and He hears and answers. I read a text and really believe He some how speaks specially to me through that text. I love Him. I want to hear from Him. I want to respond correctly. I want to do more than go through the motions of serving Him. I want Him to be everything to me. I want to honor Him greatly. I want to hear from God every day!
Zechariah 7:11 But they refused to hearken, and pulled away the shoulder, And stopped their ears, that they should not hear. I love how the prophet Zechariah describes the way the people refused to listen to him and to the Lord. They refused to pay attention. They jerked their shoulder away so he couldn't get their attention. They covered their ears either literally or figuratively. They did not want to hear. Do you come prepared to listen to messages when you are in the services? Do you come praying that God will speak to you? Do you realize that the preacher can't make you listen? The message will not get through to you if you are not wanting to hear it. Do you come to your Bible reading with a desire to hear from God? Do you do more than just go through the motions of trying to serve and worship Him? I do not want this type story written about me and my relationship to the Lord. Rather I want my story line to be, Speak Lord for your servant is listening!
Zechariah 3:1 And he shewed me Joshua the high priest standing before the angel of the LORD, and Satan standing at his right hand to resist him. Satan stands accusing and resisting the work of God and the work of the Lord Jesus Christ. We are involved in more spiritual warfare than the great majority of us would ever like to admit or recognize. God is at work and so is Satan. We need the power of God to have victory over someone that has been in mortal combat with God from the ages past. Stand firm. Resist Him. You will have victory. He will flee but it will not be because of you but because of the power of our great God.
Â On occasion, we have been questioned on why we preach Â through the Bible verse by verse and book by book. We know many good churches and Pastors do not preach the Book in a sequential order as we have chosen to do. We know and believe that our lessons and sermons must come from the truth of Godâ€™s Word but it is not necessary to preach in a sequential, expository manner. We, however, believe this is the best method for our church. We have found there are many wonderful benefits to our church knowing where we are headed each week when the Pastor asks us to â€śopen our Bibles.â€ť Kevin White, Staff Missionary to Bolivia, recently compiled this *list. As we have taught through over 25 books of the Bible we have also been allowed of God to send out over 25 families around the world to teach the Bible in this same manner! Here is a list of 8 reasons we preach through the Bible book by book! Because that is the way the Bible was written. He didn't give individual verses. He didn't give us a topical index.. He gave us 66 individual books and that it [â€¦]
Zechariah 5:3 Then said he unto me, This is the curse that goeth forth over the face of the whole earth: For every one that stealeth shall be cut off as on this side according to it; And every one that sweareth shall be cut off as on that side according to it. God is sending His Word and His curse over the land. The curse will be to destroy all that steal and all that lie, or swears falsely. God hates lying, God hates stealing. The message of grace might give some a misunderstanding of God and His love. He loves you. He accepts you but He still hates sin. God's people often like to hide under the cloak of His grace and mercy. He hates that. Our love for Him should cause such a change in us that we will hate what He hates and love what He loves.
Zechariah 2:8 For thus saith the LORD of hosts; After the glory hath he sent me unto the nations which spoiled you: For he that toucheth you toucheth the apple of his eye. God loves His people. Here He uses a term of great endearment. He calls them, His people, the apple of His eye. This term means that His people are dear and precious to Him. God loves His people. He makes that clear here in this text. Do you know that He loves you? You are His precious child. He loves you and cares for you. He is watching you. How can you rebel against such love?
Zechariah 1:3 Therefore say thou unto them, Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Turn ye unto me, saith the LORD of hosts, And I will turn unto you, saith the LORD of hosts. Zechariah calls on God's people turn to the Lord. If they will turn to the Lord then the Lord will turn to them. Their sins and their desire to walk away from God is bringing discipline and heartache to their lives. God tells them that their being rebellious and walking away is what is causing the hurt. They need to turn. They could turn. It was their decision. If they would obey then God would bless. You can't blame your sin or rebellion on God. Turn and get right with God. Enjoy God's blessings or keep walking away and endure God's judgment.
Zephaniah 2:11 The LORD will be terrible unto them: For he will famish all the gods of the earth; And men shall worship him, every one from his place, Even all the isles of the heathen. There are false gods on this earth. They are worshipped by people though they are really nothing. The God of heaven has shown His power many times and it has been rejected but there is coming a day when He will in great power show how awesome He is. All the false gods will die. They will show what they really are, nothing. People all over the earth are going to worship God. Those that have never heard are going to hear and worship. God is going to be victorious. People all over the world are going to worship Him. Every knee shall bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. That is a promise. It is a fact. As we go out carrying the gospel we must know that our success or rather His success is promised. He will be worshipped.
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