January 21, 2018 – James 3:13-4:10 – Pastor Zeke Mack

We continued through our series in the book of James this week, looking at the two competing desires that we experience everyday.

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Main Points & Outline

Main Premise: We must listen and follow God’s wisdom or we will default into the foolishness of worldly desires.

  1. Resist Worldly Passions (3:14-16; 4:1-4)
    1. Application: list the things you did this week for someone else; for God.
    2. When we allow the world to counsel us we open ourselves up to confusion and sin (v 16)
  2. Listen and Follow Godly Wisdom (3:13, 17-18; 4:5-10)
    1. Humility and gentleness define Godly wisdom (v 13, 17-18)
    2. We have a God who is infinitely jealous for our love and abundantly gives His grace (4:5-6)

Scripture: James 3:13-4:10

13 Who is wise and understanding among you? By his good conduct let him show his works in the meekness of wisdom. 14 But if you have bitter jealousy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast and be false to the truth. 15 This is not the wisdom that comes down from above, but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. 16 For where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there will be disorder and every vile practice. 17 But the wisdom from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial and sincere. 18 And a harvest of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions. You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God. Or do you suppose it is to no purpose that the Scripture says, “He yearns jealously over the spirit that he has made to dwell in us”? But he gives more grace. Therefore it says, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.” Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Be wretched and mourn and weep. Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. 10 Humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will exalt you. (ESV)

January 14, 2018 – James 3:1-12 – Pastor Zeke Mack

Continuing in our series “James: God’s Wisdom for us Today”, Pastor Zeke reminds us that “we must rely on God’s grace to transform our hearts in the way that we speak”.

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Main Points:

  1. The power of speech
  2. Speech fallen
  3. Speech redeemed

Scripture: James 3:1-12

Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness. For we all stumble in many ways. And if anyone does not stumble in what he says, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle his whole body. If we put bits into the mouths of horses so that they obey us, we guide their whole bodies as well. Look at the ships also: though they are so large and are driven by strong winds, they are guided by a very small rudder wherever the will of the pilot directs. So also the tongue is a small member, yet it boasts of great things.

How great a forest is set ablaze by such a small fire! And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness. The tongue is set among our members, staining the whole body, setting on fire the entire course of life, and set on fire by hell. For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea creature, can be tamed and has been tamed by mankind,but no human being can tame the tongue. It is a restless evil, full of deadly poison. With it we bless our Lord and Father, and with it we curse people who are made in the likeness of God. 10 From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers, these things ought not to be so. 11 Does a spring pour forth from the same opening both fresh and salt water? 12 Can a fig tree, my brothers, bear olives, or a grapevine produce figs? Neither can a salt pond yield fresh water. (ESV)

January 7, 2018 – Ephesians 1:7-10 – Rev. Ralph Soper

Rev. Ralph Soper, Conference Pastor for the BFC, brought forth God’s Word to us this morning, speaking on Ephesians 1 and the identity we have in Christ.

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Main Points

  1. In Him we have redemption
  2. In Him we are reprogrammed
  3. Applications we can learn from

Scripture: Ephesians 1:7-10

In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ 10 as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth. (ESV)

December 24, 2017 – Isaiah 9:6-7 – Pastor Zeke Mack

Listen to Pastor Zeke beautifully explain the reason that Jesus came to earth during our Candlelight Christmas Eve service.

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Scripture: Isaiah 9:6-7

For to us a child is born,
    to us a son is given;
and the government shall be upon[d] his shoulder,
    and his name shall be called[e]
Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,
    Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
Of the increase of his government and of peace
    there will be no end,
on the throne of David and over his kingdom,
    to establish it and to uphold it
with justice and with righteousness
    from this time forth and forevermore.
The zeal of the Lord of hosts will do this. (ESV)

December 24, 2017 – Luke 1:26-38 – Pastor Zeke Mack

As we celebrate the coming of Jesus into our world, Pastor Zeke spoke on Luke 1, focusing on the idea that “We must have faith in the virgin birth of our Messiah to fully embrace the good news of the Bible.”

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Main Points:

  1. The necessity of the virgin birth
  2. The importance of the Davidic line
  3. Faith in the power of God

Scripture: Luke 1:26-38

26 In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, 27 to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary.28 And he came to her and said, “Greetings, O favored one, the Lord is with you!” 29 But she was greatly troubled at the saying, and tried to discern what sort of greeting this might be. 30 And the angel said to her, “Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. 31 And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus. 32 He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David, 33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of his kingdom there will be no end.”

34 And Mary said to the angel, “How will this be, since I am a virgin?”

35 And the angel answered her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; therefore the child to be born will be called holy—the Son of God. 36 And behold, your relative Elizabeth in her old age has also conceived a son, and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren. 37 For nothing will be impossible with God.” 38 And Mary said, “Behold, I am the servant of the Lord; let it be to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her. (ESV)