Church News for Thursday, Feb. 6By Staff Reports Published 1:00pm Tuesday, March 25, 2014
Mars Hill Baptist Church
Did the snow catch you off guard this week? Were you stuck in a ditch on a highway somewhere unable to get home? I praise God that my family was safe through this storm and pray that yours was too. The snow came so unexpectedly that no one was prepared. That’s the way it will be, friends, when Jesus returns if you are not looking for him! You could be at work, at home, in the hospital, in school or talking to friends, completely unaware of what is about to happen. Well, it could happen today, before I finish this message. Are you prepared for his coming? Are you looking for him? Are you on the right road, bound for heaven, walking and talking with Jesus every day? The Bible says that the angels in heaven do not know the hour or the day of his return. Just be ready, for that day will come.
Bro. William Short’s message was taken from Matthew 7:13-20. “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it. Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thorn bushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore, by their fruits you will know them.”
I have always been told never to judge a book by its cover and never to judge another person because you too will be judged. But we can be fruit inspectors. You can tell a rotten apple from a good one, a rotten peach from a sweet, juicy one. Bad apples will make a very bad pie, but a good apple will make a very good pie. During the snow this week, many roads were closed or impassable. That didn’t stop some folks from trying to drive on them, and some of them wound up in a ditch. Be fruit inspectors. God gave us brains to be used!
Life catches us unaware many times in the form of bad health, death of a loved one, loss of a job or home. So many things can happen that we cannot prepare for, but that doesn’t give us the right to sit down and quit trying. No, Jesus didn’t quit; he went all the way to the cross for us! If there is one thing certain in this world, it’s that death will find each of us. It’s a fact that one out of one person dies. It’s also a fact that Jesus is returning to earth one day, and this is something that we can prepare for. We may not know the day or the hour, but we know that it will happen.
Narrow is the road to heaven, but you can find it. Its’ not hidden from us. It’s there; our map to heaven is laid out in God’s plan in the Bible, his Holy Word. It’s only hidden if you don’t read the Bible and give your heart to Jesus. Develop a personal relationship with him. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. There is no other way to heaven except through the precious blood of Jesus.
The broad way that leads to destruction is the way of the world, and there are many false teachers, preachers and prophets in sheep’s clothing that would have you believe that if you do good things, you will go to heaven. There is nothing that you can do to get into heaven. In this case, it’s not what you know, but who you know that opens the gates of heaven for you. Some (supposed) preachers will have you believe that if you give your money and possessions to them, you will get into heaven. Be a fruit inspector; know the tree (person) by the fruit they bear. You and you alone can make the decision to go the wrong way. Heaven is a one lane, one direction only street. You can veer off this road, but be prepared for the ditch you will fall into. The Bible tells us that God is long-suffering toward us; that he is patient, loving and kind. But know that even God’s patience has an end. You can only deny him so many times, and the ditch you fall into will be hell for eternity.
Paul was witnessing to King Agrippa, pleading with him to be saved. The king said, “Paul, I am almost persuaded.” Almost is never enough. It’s not a glass-half-full kind of state. You have to be “all in” with Jesus; it’s the only way to heaven. Get on the right road, for as suddenly as the snowstorm hit, Jesus could return. John 14:1-6 tells us that Jesus is preparing a place for us, that he is coming back to take us with him. Be ready!
Please continue to pray for our church, our pastor, the sick, the lost, the hurting souls, our children, our troops and our government.
We welcome all visitors to Mars Hill, and our members are expected! God is good, all the time! Amen.
Mount Carmel No. 1
As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord. Songs and praise were given to the Lord this Sunday morning as we gathered in his house. God’s Holy Spirit unites believers for the cause of Christ. We are thankful for all who came to worship with us on the Sabbath.
We are thankful for all who gathered with us in the prayer room following Sunday school. We banded together to pray for our church and our morning service.
Our pastor’s message on Sunday came from Psalm 46:8-11. His title was “Be Still and Know That I Am God.” It is our most important responsibility to honor the Lord. We should hear his voice through his Word and obey him. I cannot see my God but I can feel his presence. God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
God gives us reassurance. Trust him and he will resolve your problems. We can praise God because he can solve our conflict, for this God is our God forever and ever. “Be still and know that I am God,” saith the Lord.
On Sunday evening, Bro. Derrell preached from Luke 8:4-18. This is the parable of the sower and the seed. Bro. Derrell compared his sermon to the nursery rhyme “The Three Little Pigs.” Some seed fell by the wayside and was trodden down; some fell upon a rock, sprang up and withered; some fell on thorns and was choked out; but some fell on good ground, sprang up and bore fruit. Jesus’ disciples asked, “What might this parable be?” Jesus explained that the seed is the word of God.
Feb. 8: Brunch at Jemison First Baptist at 10 a.m. Speaker will be Dawn Smith Jordan.
Feb. 9: Youth attending Winter Jam will leave the church following the morning service. Also, a love offering will be taken for Natalie Littleton’s mission trip to Africa in June.
Feb. 13: Meet at the church at 4 p.m. for Prayer Walk. Come be a part of this prayer meeting.
Feb. 16: Pancake breakfast at 8:30 a.m. Remember this date and come be with us as we join together to enjoy breakfast and have prayer.
Our prayer list continues to be long. Please pray for the many who need our prayers, whether for illness, injury, military service or other needs. Mrs. Elladene Mims has been in the hospital this week. Remember her as you pray. While at work on Wednesday, Jim Hayes slipped on the ice and fell, breaking his shoulder. Keep him in your prayers. We ask you to join daily with us in prayer as we pray for all the requests. May God bless you is our prayer.