Tomorrow is Communion Sunday; please join us. Our Monthly Potluck has been moved to NEXT Sunday (8/4/16) to coincide with our Annual Baptism Picnic.
Franklin Graham will be coming to Albany on August 25. He is coming to pray for revival in our country and for our elected elected officials. Please keep the preparations in your prayers!
Are you or someone you know dealing with unresolved relationships, unaddressed guilt, or untreated pain?
Are you dealing with anger, lust, covetousness, greed, discontentment, a critical spirit, envy and jealousy?
Are you dealing with difficult people?
Please prayerfully consider coming out Sunday morning for hope in the glory, grace and power of the Gospel.
We need to reschedule our July Pot-Luck and Annual Baptism Picnic to the first Sunday in August (8/7). Sorry of any inconvenience. Please get the word out.
I was reading an interview with Eric Metaxas in World Magazine --- if you don't subscribe, you should. In the interview, Mr. Metaxas made the following statement about the failures of our country; a statement that applies equally to us as a country, churches, families and individuals. It is truly within the narrative of the great, Gospel message we've each been entrusted with.
"As a Christian you want to acknowledge your shortcomings (and sin). But if you're some self-flagellating, guilt-ridden person, you're not living the way God wants you to live. He wants you to get beyond your sins. We repent of our racial sins as a country. We repent of our sins against Native Americans. Then you move on. We've gotten trapped in this mode of negative narratives. Its been hugely harmful."
(World Magazine, Vol 31, Number 15, July 23, 2016)
The same can be applied to each of us in our personal areas of sin and failure, but that's where the Good News of the Gospel comes in.
Two sad and sinful draw backs:
1) Those who refuse to turn to God's ready forgiveness and to repent of their hurtful and even sinful attitudes, choices and behaviors;
2) Those who refuse to forgive --- those who have genuinely done so.
Let's learn to repent, receive our own forgiveness, forgive others --- and then move on while allowing others to do the same..
That's the power of a Gospel-Centered life --- a Christ-Centered life!
Please join us for "The Vertical Church" dvd series with Dr. James MacDonald. It will revolutionize our concept of why we attend church. Starts at 7:00 PM. Child Care is provided.
Our Vertical Church DVD Series featuring Dr. James MacDonald, starts this Wednesday at 7:00 PM. Child Care is provided. We encourage everyone to attend who desires a realignment in their walk with the Lord and with others. Find out what the focus of the church really was designed for.
Sadly, there are many confused with so many quickly and radically changing concepts concerning sexuality and gender identification. Even many confessing "Bible-Believing" Christians are placing human sentimentality above God's Word, which reflects His highest love. The following is a very well written and compassionate article from Kairos Journal written from a Biblical World View. Published with permission.
"And So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them." Genesis 1:27 (ESV)
In April 2016, the Fourth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals held that public schools may not discriminate against students on the basis of gender identity. Ruling in favor of a Virginia transgender student identified in court documents only as G.G., two judges on a three-judge panel held that schools may not segregate students into separate restrooms and locker rooms on the basis of biological sex alone. Within their ruling, the judges noted the supposed “limitations of a nonmalleable, binary conception of sex.” They also criticized the alleged limitations of “connot[ing] male and femaleness . . . by reference to the factors . . . termed ‘biological sex,’ namely reproductive organs.”1 Standing in stark contrast to the judges’ opinion is Genesis 1:28, where gender is defined in a strikingly biological, “binary,” and “nonmalleable” way.
This verse employs Hebrew words for male (zakar) and female (neqeba) with distinctly biological connotations. Zakar likely had an original meaning of being sharp and thus came to reference the male anatomy, and by extension, the male gender.2 Neqeba, in contrast, derives from a term referencing a hole or cavity and thus came to signify the female gender.3 The anatomical references of the terms are intentional here, for they speak of sexual distinction among humans and set the stage for God’s command in the following verse to “be fruitful and multiply.” Indeed, humans are the only creatures whose binary gender distinction is noted in Genesis 1. This does not deny or obscure gender distinctions among animals but highlights the goodness and God-given character of human gender. In fact, gender helps constitute humans in the image of God in humankind.
For this reason, Scripture elsewhere condemns the blurring of gender distinctions. For example, Deuteronomy 22:5 states that “a woman shall not wear a man’s garment, nor shall a man put on a woman’s cloak, for whoever does these things is an abomination to the LORD your God.” The abiding principle, with different applications in various cultures, is that women should not attempt to look like men and vice versa. Similarly in the New Testament, Paul tells the Corinthians that when praying or prophesying in public worship, men and women should don attire appropriate to their respective genders (1 Corinthians 11:4-10). The norm for God’s people is to celebrate and not obscure God-given gender distinctions.
The biblical teaching is a marked departure from modern notions that gender is merely chosen, felt, or can be “reassigned” surgically. Gender is assigned by God, and it displays His marvelous creativity. Of course, in a fallen world there are tragic instances in which people experience feelings of dissatisfaction regarding their God-given genders. And some are born with both male and female sex organs or with irregular configurations of their sex chromosomes. But far from overturning traditional classifications of gender, these unfortunate conditions underscore the goodness of the God-assigned norm: “Male and female he created them.”
Given the pervasive challenge to this conception of gender, Christians have a responsibility to educate themselves regarding the biblical and medical realities, and take a stand when governments or businesses attempt to dismiss biological gender distinctions as discriminatory or degrading. Human happiness and even survival depend on embracing maleness and femaleness.
1 G.G. v. Gloucester County School Board, Case No. 15-2056 (4th Cir. 2016).
2 The Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew and English Lexicon (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1906), s.v. “zakar.”
3 Ibid., s.v. “nequeba.”
There will be childcare for our Summer mid-week study starting Weds., July 13th at 7:00 PM. We will be going through "The Vertical Church" by Dr. James MacDonald. I so encourage everyone to attend and learn God's heart design for forming His church with genuine worshipers; it requires a "vertical" focus.
The church of Jesus Christ should have "a clear and focused purpose: elevating and honoring God's great Son in the minds and hearts of those who gather in His name. Period."
Starting Wednesday evening, July 13th at 7:00 PM, we will be starting a 9-week DVD series of what I believe is of crucial realignment --- "The Vertical Church," by Dr. James MacDonald.
It's time to get vertical. It's what the church should be all about. It's the only thing that will really satisfy our God --- and our own hearts!
I seldom ask, but I encourage everyone to prayerfully schedule the time to attend.
For His glory and His glory alone!
We desire to see God glorified through the liberating power of the Gospel by leading people to freedom in Christ, and positive, biblical life-change.