June 28, 2016

POD - Psalm 7

podintro.gifPsalm 7

(as read by Richard A)

A meditation by David, which he sang to Yahweh,
concerning the words of Cush, the Benjamite.


7:1 Yahweh, my God,
I take refuge in you.
Save me from all those who pursue me, and deliver me,
7:2 lest they tear apart my soul like a lion,
ripping it in pieces, while there is none to deliver.
7:3 Yahweh, my God, if I have done this,
if there is iniquity in my hands,
7:4 if I have rewarded evil to him who was at peace with me
(yes, if I have delivered him who without cause was my adversary),
7:5 let the enemy pursue my soul, and overtake it;
yes, let him tread my life down to the earth,
and lay my glory in the dust.

Selah.

7:6 Arise, Yahweh, in your anger.
Lift up yourself against the rage of my adversaries.
Awake for me. You have commanded judgement.
7:7 Let the congregation of the peoples surround you.
Rule over them on high.
7:8 Yahweh administers judgement to the peoples.
Judge me, Yahweh, according to my righteousness,
and to my integrity that is in me.
7:9 Oh let the wickedness of the wicked come to an end,
but establish the righteous;
their minds and hearts are searched by the righteous God.
7:10 My shield is with God,
who saves the upright in heart.
7:11 God is a righteous judge,
yes, a God who has indignation every day.
7:12 If a man doesn’t relent,
he will sharpen his sword;
he has bent and strung his bow.
7:13 He has also prepared for himself the instruments of death.
He makes ready his flaming arrows.
7:14 Behold, he travails with iniquity.
Yes, he has conceived mischief,
and brought forth falsehood.
7:15 He has dug a hole,
and has fallen into the pit which he made.
7:16 The trouble he causes shall return to his own head.
His violence shall come down on the crown of his own head.
7:17 I will give thanks to Yahweh according to his righteousness,
and will sing praise to the name of Yahweh Most High.

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June 27, 2016

Think Spot 27 june 2016

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Think Spot - 27th June 2016
Be Authentic

"Such as we are in word by letters when we are absent, such will we be also in deed when we are present." (2 Corinthians 10:11)

For those of us who engage in social media, writing letters or emails to people or as we talk to people on phones are we the same person then as when we are with people face to face? Is your behaviour with people when not physically with them the same as your behaviour when you are physically with them?

That is how the great Apostle Paul was with people - the same in their presence or away from them. That is what he urged his readers, the Corinth church, to be like... God wants the same from us - authenticity and relying on Him to help us be authentic Christians living in what is often an unauthentic world...


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Sermon - How not to be a Chocolate Christian

Have you ever noticed that chocolate melts under pressure & heat? If you haven't, take a piece of chocolate and hold it between your fingers! It will soon melt! If you are a Christian, you need to be active in your local church so that you don't melt under pressure and you will remain firm in your faith! Otherwise you will be a chocolate Christian who easily gives up under the stress and pressure of every day life! At a church local to where you live, you are needed regardless of who you are! Perhaps this is you?

  • Interested observer but not a committed Christian
  • Not bothered
  • Not good enough
  • Just want to be left alone
  • Don't know how to be involved
  • Don't know why being involved is important
  • Too busy

But why should you be involved?

Why? You have talents to be used!!

When Jesus said to His apostles "I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father." (John 14v12), it was through the promised Holy Spirit (John 14v17), and the impartation of Spiritual Gifts that His words were fulfilled. The reason that the Holy Spirit imparts spiritual gifts to Christians is so that the body of Christ is built up (Ephesians 4v12), for the common good of the church (1Corinthians 12v7, 14v12) and "so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ." (1 Peter 4v12).

These three reasons signify that God wants Christians to be active in service and not still like stagnant water. That is why we have been given gifts and if these gifts are not used for God's purposes, then they are utterly useless and meaningless. And the gifts are not just the supposedly spectacular gifts but also the supposedly mundane! Cleaning is as much a spiritual gift as preaching is!

As we are not to neglect our gifts, or let other Christians neglect their gifts, we are to fan the gifts into flame (2 Timothy1v6). Much like blowing on embers and stirring them up will restart the flames of a fire! To do this, as Christians, we are to employ the gifts faithfully and by asking God to continue their development, strengthening and for opportunities to use them! Seek gifts that build up others, commands Paul (1 Corinthians 14v1-12). Ask God faithfully for gifts that give opportunity for service to God and others!

Why? We are dependent on each other

As Christians, we are dependent upon each other, just as one part of the human body has dependence on another part. That is why we serve each other and use the gifts generously given by God. As all Christians have gifts, we have a responsibility to discover and develop them (1 Timothy 4v14)! God has called Christians and equipped them with spiritual gifts, and they are not to be neglected! You are a member of the body of Jesus Christ the church! If you are not being active that means the Church body is affected aversely! Its like a part of your body failing to do as it should!

Why? Improve your serve!

They are opportunities for Christians to serve other people. Some gifts like teaching, helping or leadership quite possibly are enhancements of natural abilities whilst others like faith, healing and miracles are from the Spirit's empowerment alone. In the Parable of the Talents (Matthew 25:14-30), Jesus intimates that those who follow Him, will be judged according to all that they have been given stewardship of! This includes things such as Spiritual Gifts (1 Corinthians 12v1-10), acts of service (Galatians 5v13) and material possessions (2 Corinthians 9v6-8)! These are used to accomplish three other items of Stewardship: mission, message and people.

Why? To follow Jesus

The Christian life is not to be static or inactive - it was never meant to be! The Christian life is to be dynamic! It is to be active. The word servant is key in Scripture. It is used at least 500 times in its various derivatives. When a Christian serves, God's honour is released. This is done because service shows the beauty and glory of Jesus Christ to those being served and to those watching. That is to be our motive for service. Serving is never to be about what you and I can get out of it. When that is the motive, God is not glorified. God's glory, honour and supremacy are to be the goal of a Christian's life. Spiritual growth comes from serving rather than being served. This is because what ever is given in service of God and others, your faith grows and Jesus Christ gives back even more. Jesus speaking in Matthew 25v15-30 tells of the rewards for faithful service and the penalties for being faithless. Serving others is a sign that you are trusting in and having faith in God. It's a visible aspect of your invisible faith. Service is the outward expression of your inner beliefs. Serving is an outward expression of your inner faith - an external working out of your inner salvation. Serving God and others is the mark of a spiritually mature (or spiritually maturing) Christian and through service, the greatest servant of all, Jesus Christ, is reflected in our lives. "For Jesus Christ, came to serve and give his very life for others" (Mark 10v45). As Christians we are to be as Jesus Christ (Romans 8v28; Philippians 2v5) and to serve. Yet if we are honest, we sometimes feel incapable, just as Moses did (Exodus 3). When the church is built up, unity will inevitably prevail and be built up.

GO!

So if you find you are currently inactive in your local church, then please go and make yourself available to serve there! Ask your pastor or church leader how you can help out! By doing so, and submitting yourself to the Holy Spirit who indwells you, the lives of other people could be changed for God's greater glory because of your acts of service and worship.

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