Church News for Thursday, Feb. 20

Published 2:52 pm Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Mars Hill Baptist Church

It was a beautiful day to be in God’s house, and Mars Hill was full on Sunday. We love God. We are thankful for our visitors and pray that you come again soon.

Are you watching the Olympic Games this week? There are some really talented and fast skaters hoping for a chance at a gold medal before the games come to an end. Did you know that Jonah was a fast runner? He probably could have won a gold medal for his trip to Nineveh after being in the belly of a big fish. In chapter 3 of Jonah, the Bible tells us that the trip was a three-day trek, but Jonah made it before the end of the first day! Now that is fast, friend. Jonah might have been a fast runner, but he could not outrun God.

Bro. William Short’s message was taken from Jonah 2. Jonah prayed to God from the belly of the big fish. He cried out to the Lord because of his affliction. Jonah described the fish’s belly as being in hell, with death but a breath away. Jonah tells us that his soul fainted and he remembered the Lord. Even in the belly of the fish, Jonah knew that God could hear him. His prayer was not one of deliverance, but one of thanksgiving and praise. He thanked God for undeserved deliverance. Jonah vowed to pay what he owed to God, saying salvation is of the Lord. Then the Lord spoke to the fish and it vomited Jonah onto dry land. What power that God holds over land and sea, heaven and earth. He is truly everywhere, all knowing and all seeing. You cannot outrun God, my friend, any more than Jonah could.

We may not be swallowed by a big fish, but life can swallow us up until we are but one breath away from death, as Jonah was. Our prayer should be to Holy God for forgiveness, true repentance and a full 180-degree turn from sin to a life with heaven as our destination. You may have heard it said that prayer changes things, and the thing it changes is us. If we are saved, our prayers are always heard, always answered. They may not be answered in the way that we wish, but they are answered according to the will of God for us. God knows best, he knows what is in our future. We may not be able to run fast, but a steady walk with God will always bring about true results in our life.

While in the belly of the fish, Jonah’s prayer went straight to the temple of God, straight to the ear of God. When we pray, our prayers should be to the one true God, straight to his ear only. Not to a priest, or preacher, or elder or Mom or Dad, but to God. He is the only one worthy of our prayers, the only one willing and able to answer them. But to have our prayers reach God, we must first be saved, accepted into God’s house as his child and grafted to the tree by the salvation of God. If you feel that your prayers are going no higher than the ceiling, better check up.

Throughout the ages, scholars and scientists have debated what kind of fish could swallow a man whole, yet be able to live three days and nights. Friend, it doesn’t matter what kind of fish it was, in Jonah 1:17, the Bible tells us that God “prepared” a great fish to swallow Jonah. This tells me that God made this fish for Jonah and Jonah only. This world may never know the exact kind of fish, but friend, it was God’s fish. He fishes for us daily, trying to get our attention, asking us to turn from our wicked ways and follow him before we are swallowed up. This world is not our final home. There will be another home when we breathe our last breath on earth. Will it be heaven with Jesus or hell with the devil and his minions? The choice is ours, but rest assured, you will not out run God!

On Saturday, Feb. 22, the men will have a work day at the church beginning at 8 a.m. The ladies of our church will be meeting at Shoney’s for breakfast at 8 a.m. March 1 at 6 p.m. will be our Senior Citizen Supper and Show.

Please pray for our church, that we be a shining light on a hill for Jesus. Pray for our pastor, the sick, the lost, the hurting, our children, our troops, our country and our government. God is good, all the time! Amen.

Bethany Baptist Church

“I Love Thee” was our opening song, followed by a devotion from Luke 24:26, 44-47 titled “The Necessity of Christ’s Death.” Why did Jesus need to die? It was to fulfill God’s perfect plan of salvation. He was the only one who was the perfect one-time sacrifice for the sins of the whole world. Only in God’s timing and through prayer and study of God’s Word, can we understand what God wants us to know.

The devotion was followed by a prayer and Sunday school. We then sang “Oh How He Loves You and Me,” “I Love to Tell the Story,” “Love Lifted Me” and “My Jesus I Love Thee.”

Bro. Aubry’s message, “The Big ‘D’,” was taken from Genesis 3:1-5. There were four things Satan wanted Eve and saved people today to doubt: 1) The Word of God: Satan puts doubt in our hearts and minds that the Word of God is true. 2) The honesty of God: God said Eve would die if she ate the forbidden fruit. Satan said that God did not mean she would really die. God was talking about immediate spiritual death, and eventually physical death. According to Satan, God lied because Eve did not have an immediate physical death. 3) The goodness of God, knowing good and evil. We do not need God’s Word to know this, it is our nature. God is good to us every day. 4) The wisdom of God: he instills in his children to know when we sin. Satan is not worried about the lost, they already doubt.

For what would we be willing to die? Do we believe God wants our church to be a lighthouse in our community? We must spread the gospel of Jesus Christ to the neighborhood and beyond. Satan wants to convince us that the world is right and we are wrong. Never doubt God and his goodness. Our services ended with a prayer, the hymn “Jesus Is Calling” and a dismissal prayer.

We opened services with the hymn “This World Is Not My Home.” Bro. Aubry’s message was about the confrontation of Jesus with the chief priests and scribes. They were in a standoff with Jesus, whom they did not believe was the Son of God. They did not believe Jesus had the power to stop their making of extra money in the temple in Luke 19:45-48. Luke 20:1-8 describes the standoff. They sought to destroy Jesus, but because of the crowd, they did not at this time. It was not time for Jesus to die.

Verses 9-16 tell the story. The parable of the vineyard was a picture of what happened in ancient Israel and of Jesus’ death on the cross. God sent prophets to keep Israel out of trouble. They stoned the prophets who were telling the truth; then God sent Jesus who died for the sins of the world.

God gives us his pastors and preachers to proclaim his word to a lost and dying world and to the saved. We need to be able and willing to tell others about Jesus.

Following the message, we were dismissed in prayer.

Our prayer list includes our church, government leaders, Bro. Aubry, Shirley, Larry Miller, Billie, Jackie, Elwyn, Grace, Chris Knight, Glenn and Michelle, Lisa Rodriguez, John Rodriguez, Glenda Wallace (daughter of Kurt Wallace), missionaries and many others.

Please visit us at the appointed times on Sundays and Wednesdays.