Christian Book Distributors Affiliate

REMINDER: I am an affiliate with Christian Book Distributors! Anytime someone clicks on any of my affiliate links and purchases from CBD, I get credit for their purchase! This is a great benefit for me because it will help compensate me for my time when I do book reviews for the publishers that I review for! CBD has been my go to website for the past 14 years when I want to purchase Christian books, resources, gifts, music, etc. for great prices!

I have consistently posted links to CBD whenever I do book reviews or mention books, music, movies, etc. Along with the direct links to the books and other products that I mention, I will also be placing a CBD graphic for you to click on which will send you to the CBD home page.

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Affiliate Link:

http://www.christianbook.com/Christian/Books/home?event=AFF&p=1181662

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Thank you for your continued support!
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How does my site get credit for referring a customer to Christianbook.com?

“When a customer clicks to Christianbook.com via an affiliate link, the browsing session is activated. Each time that the customer clicks on the web site the session is reactivated. The Christianbook Group will track merchandise purchases that a customer makes during the browsing session so that we can credit your account appropriately.

The browsing session will remain active for four (4) hours after the last link is clicked on the Christianbook.com website. If the customer leaves the Christianbook.com website and returns within this four (4) hour period their browsing session will be reset and the customer will still be deemed a referral of Affiliate unless they returned through the links of another Affiliate, co- branded site or other source tracked by The Christianbook Group.

All items placed into the customer’s shopping cart during an active affiliate browsing session will be credited to Affiliate if items are purchased before the expiration of thirty (30) days from the date an item was placed in the shopping cart.

However, if they leave the site for more than 4 hours, do not click on the Christianbook.com site to reactivate the clock, do not order books placed within an active browsing session within their book bag and order within the 30 day limit or leave the site and place the order from another computer, then any order placed will not be credited to your account.”

Christian Book Distributors Affiliate

REMINDER: I am an affiliate with Christian Book Distributors! Anytime someone clicks on any of my affiliate links and purchases from CBD, I get credit for their purchase! This is a great benefit for me because it will help compensate me for my time when I do book reviews for the publishers that I review for! CBD has been my go to website for the past 13 years when I want to purchase Christian books, resources, gifts, music, etc. for great prices!

I have consistently posted links to CBD whenever I do book reviews or mention books, music, movies, etc.  Along with the direct links to the books and other products that I mention, I will also be placing a CBD graphic for you to click on which will send you to the CBD home page.

*****

Affiliate Link:

http://www.christianbook.com/Christian/Books/home?event=AFF&p=1181662

lgsquare

Thank you for your continued support!
*****

How does my site get credit for referring a customer to Christianbook.com?

“When a customer clicks to Christianbook.com via an affiliate link, the browsing session is activated. Each time that the customer clicks on the web site the session is reactivated. The Christianbook Group will track merchandise purchases that a customer makes during the browsing session so that we can credit your account appropriately.

The browsing session will remain active for four (4) hours after the last link is clicked on the Christianbook.com website. If the customer leaves the Christianbook.com website and returns within this four (4) hour period their browsing session will be reset and the customer will still be deemed a referral of Affiliate unless they returned through the links of another Affiliate, co- branded site or other source tracked by The Christianbook Group.

All items placed into the customer’s shopping cart during an active affiliate browsing session will be credited to Affiliate if items are purchased before the expiration of thirty (30) days from the date an item was placed in the shopping cart.

However, if they leave the site for more than 4 hours, do not click on the Christianbook.com site to reactivate the clock, do not order books placed within an active browsing session within their book bag and order within the 30 day limit or leave the site and place the order from another computer, then any order placed will not be credited to your account.”

Christian Book Distributors Affiliate!

ANNOUNCEMENT:

I am now an affiliate with Christian Book Distributors! Anytime someone clicks on any of my affiliate links and purchases from CBD, I get credit for their purchase! This is a great benefit for me because it will help compensate me for my time when I do book reviews for the 4 publishers that I review for! CBD has been my go to website for the past 12 years when I want to purchase Christian books, resources, gifts, music, etc. for great prices!

I have consistently posted links to CBD whenever I do book reviews or mention books, music, movies, etc. I am currently in the process of replacing all of the old links with new ones attached to my affiliate information. Along with the direct links to the books and other products that I mention, I will also be placing a CBD graphic for you to click on which will send you to the CBD home page.

*****

Affiliate Link:

http://www.christianbook.com/Christian/Books/home?event=AFF&p=1181662

lgsquare

Thank you for your continued support!

*****

How does my site get credit for referring a customer to Christianbook.com?

“When a customer clicks to Christianbook.com via an affiliate link, the browsing session is activated. Each time that the customer clicks on the web site the session is reactivated. The Christianbook Group will track merchandise purchases that a customer makes during the browsing session so that we can credit your account appropriately.

The browsing session will remain active for four (4) hours after the last link is clicked on the Christianbook.com website. If the customer leaves the Christianbook.com website and returns within this four (4) hour period their browsing session will be reset and the customer will still be deemed a referral of Affiliate unless they returned through the links of another Affiliate, co- branded site or other source tracked by The Christianbook Group.

All items placed into the customer’s shopping cart during an active affiliate browsing session will be credited to Affiliate if items are purchased before the expiration of thirty (30) days from the date an item was placed in the shopping cart.

However, if they leave the site for more than 4 hours, do not click on the Christianbook.com site to reactivate the clock, do not order books placed within an active browsing session within their book bag and order within the 30 day limit or leave the site and place the order from another computer, then any order placed will not be credited to your account.”

Sermon Jam: “Because He Is Good”

I have been following Theologigal for a few weeks. Her latest post has a great video which sums up why I need Jesus. I encourage you to view the video and her commentary here.

“So often when Christians hear or read a call to repentance they think, “Yes, that’s so true! People have sinned! People need to repent!” But the word, “people” includes you, and before you can think of anyone else in your life who you think needs repentance you first need to think about yourself, how you have sinned, how you need to repent, before you fall into the trap of being a finger-pointing Pharisee (Matt. 7:5).”

Freedom From the Spirit of Anger-Part 2

To recap; here are the main outline points from yesterday (See Freedom From the Spirit of Anger-Part 1 for more on each point):

1. The Bible mentions both personal and impersonal spirits.

2. We must “try” the spirits coming from our and other people’s spirits to make sure they are of God.

3. There is a great possibility that we may not realize it when our spirit is putting off the wrong spirit.

4. Victory in the area of the spirit others sense coming from you is more important than victory in the area of actions others see you doing.

5. There is no Biblical justification for either anger or a spirit of anger.

Continuing the sermon Freedom From the Spirit of Anger by Dr. S. M. Davis; we finally address a couple of the statements that Christians often use to justify their anger.

Two questions that are commonly asked by people who defend anger are:

1. “But didn’t Jesus get angry?”

  • The following words occur a total of 584 time in the Bible: Anger, Angry, Wrath, Wroth, Fury, Furious, & Indignation. 470 of those times (80%) appear to be God’s wrath (Numbers 11:10, Joshua 7:1, 2 Samuel 6, 1 Kings 14:15, 1 Kings 16:33, Isaiah 30:27, etc.)
  • The only time that the Bible says that Jesus used anger was in Mark 3:5: “He looked around at them in anger and, deeply distressed at their stubborn hearts, said to the man, “Stretch out your hand.” He stretched it out, and his hand was completely restored.”
  • Jesus seemed to get angry most at hypocrisy. Twice Jesus seemed to be angry when he cleansed the temple (John 2:12-25Matthew 21:12-17). Jesus seemed to get angry at the Pharisees in Matthew 23.
  • Isn’t Jesus our example? In most areas; yes he is our example. But there are a couple of things that Jesus did; that if we are wise, we probably won’t try:

1. Jesus, in a weakened state after 40 days of fasting was lead directly in the presence of Satan to be tempted. Jesus proved that He is God; we would probably prove that we are not God. Only two chapters later (Matthew 6:13) Jesus said that we should pray “lead us not into temptation” The best way to deal with temptation is to stay away from it.

2. Another thing that Jesus did that we should not do; is use anger. God’s anger is spiritual and produces justice. Man’s anger is carnal and produces injustice. God can righteously get angry; and then righteously take action that man cannot righteously take because man isn’t God.

  • The purpose of wrath is vengeance. “Dearly beloved, avenge not yourselves, but rather give place unto wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, saith the Lord.” Romans 12:19 (KJV)
    • Vengeance is not given to us. Ezekiel 24:7-8
    • If a parent spanks a child while angry; he has not disciplined the child. He is carrying out vengeance upon the child. He violates Genesis 18:19, Luke 1:17 which require that a parent be just. This can easily cause a child to be disobedient or rebellious.
    • When a man is defending his family he needs courage and discernment not anger. Angry people act out of rage instead of reason.
    • Anyone who says anything in anger will probably say the wrong thing. But if they do say the the right thing; it will probably be said the wrong way. (Proverbs 14:17)

  • What are the results of an angry spirit in the pulpit?
    • Continual strife among pastor and deacons, pastor and people, and people and people.
    • Empty pews and people going to churches that don’t preach the Bible.
    • A plague of anger is spread throughout homes, businesses, and society
      • “Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man, do not associate with one easily angered, or you may learn his ways and get yourself ensnared.” Proverbs 22:24-25
    • Vengeance is being handled by someone not Biblically qualified to handle it.
    • It causes us to lose the battle to spread God’s truth among the nations of the world.
      • The fruit of the spirit is most powerful when it is presented with the fruit of the spirit; not anger. (Love, Joy, Peace, Long suffering, Gentleness, Goodness, Faith, Meekness, and Temperance).

2. “How about the verse that says, “be ye angry and sin not?” Ephesians 4:26 (KJV)

  • Notice first the number of clear scriptures that say to get rid of anger completely. One of them being only 5 verses away.
  • Notice secondly that the Greek verb tense for “Be ye angry” is a present-passive imperative.
    1. Present = Now
    2. Passive = You are being acted upon
    3. Imperative = Command
    • Meaning= There are going to be times when you feel something or someone working on you to make you angry. Recognize that! Don’t let it happen. Don’t sin by getting angry.
  • You may not be able to stop the initial emotion you feel that leads you into the sin of anger. But you can with God’s help; refuse to be angry, to express anger itself, or allow anger to deepen and turn into wrath.
  • The problem with the world’s reasoning that its okay to get angry:
    • Anger is not something you can properly control. You can’t have “a little bit” of anger. You cannot have a little adultery, a little idolatry, a little murder, or a little anger.
    • The world’s reasoning about controlling anger causes us to miss God’s way to control anger.
      • ” It is better to dwell in the wilderness, than with a contentious and an angry woman.” Proverbs 21:19 (KJV)

 

10 Steps to Conquer the Spirit of Anger

  1. Recognize the problem and its seriousness.
  2. Desire the victory enough to cry out to God.
  3. Repent of the sin.
  4. Confess the sin of fore-fathers and ask God to break any curses coming down the generations.
  5. Ask God to take back the ground Satan has taken because of anger.
  6. See the connection between anger and lust in Matthew 5:21-32.
  7. Watch for people and things that are gong to come your way to make you angry.
  8. Purpose to enter the presence of family members and business associates with praise.
  9. Ask God daily to fill you with the Holy Spirit and to produce the fruit of the Holy Spirit in your life.
  10. Make yourself fully accountable.

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This sermon (both Parts 1 & 2) caused me to completely change my views on anger. For most of my life; I believed that I had every right to be angry for the bad things that have happened in my life. I used the exact arguments that Dr. Davis addresses in this sermon to justify my anger. I said to myself (and others), “Jesus got angry so it must be okay.” I most often am told that it is okay to have “righteous anger,” or “anger is not a sin but what you do when you get angry can be sin,” “you have to release your anger in a healthy way,” etc. I lived and believed these statements and I never stopped being angry! I never got over my anger so it turned into bitterness (I will address a sermon on bitterness in the near future). And now I am the wife and mom who is angry and bitter.

Only by God’s grace did I recognize the ugliness my heart and only through His power am I slowly changing. I started to look at my anger as sin. So now I know that I am wrong and that I need God’s forgiveness every time I get angry. I am not judging anyone else to determine if anger is sin for everyone. Maybe it isn’t; I don’t know. That is between each person and God. I just know that God’s Word spoke to me on a whole new level when I heard the message of this sermon. It wasn’t until I started facing my anger as sin and stopped justifying that I began to really dealing with my problems with anger. Don’t get me wrong. I still have a long way to go. I still have to break all of my bad habits and start replacing them with new ones. This is still a daily struggle for me but God is the Potter and I am the clay. He is still molding me and making me into the woman that He sees in the completed picture.

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Freedom From The Spirit Of Anger by: Dr. S. M. Davis

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I would love to hear your thoughts and stories if you have ever dealt with anger in your life!

Please feel free to comment on my posts and/or e-mail me at:  hearttreasurescontact@yahoo.com

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You can find links to all posts in this series on the Anger Series Index page.

Image found on Google Images.

Freedom From the Spirit of Anger-Part 1

The second sermon in Dr. S. M. Davis’ Anger Series is Freedom From the Spirit of Anger. In it he responds to the statements most often used to justify anger. So that I don’t make this post too long I have divided the sermon into two posts. The Part 2 will address the statements: Jesus got angry or Ephesians 4:26 “In your anger do not sin…”  Click Freedom From the Spirit of Anger-Part 2 for the second installment and my personal comments on this sermon. (The outline and information here are my notes from the sermon. A lot of it is directly quoted.)

“And it came to pass, when the time was come that he should be received up, he steadfastly set his face to go to Jerusalem, And sent messengers before his face: and they went, and entered into a village of the Samaritans, to make ready for him. And they did not receive him, because his face was as though he would go to Jerusalem. And when his disciples James and John saw this, they said, Lord, wilt thou that we command fire to come down from heaven, and consume them, even as Elias did? But he turned, and rebuked them, and said, Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of. For the Son of man is not come to destroy men’s lives, but to save them. And they went to another village.” Luke 9:51-56 (KJV)

“Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of” means you don’t realize the spirit coming from you; the spirit that your spirit is putting off, emitting, or revealing.

1. The Bible mentions both personal and impersonal spirits.

  • Spirit “pneuma”=Holy Spirit, Evil spirits, or Other spirits. There is a difference between:
    1. Your spirit
    2. Good & bad spirits (whether personal or impersonal) that affect your spirit
    3. The spirit that others sense coming from your spirit.

2. We must “try” the spirits coming from our and other people’s spirits to make sure they are of God.

  • “Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.” 1 John 4:1

3. There is a great possibility that we may not realize it when our spirit is putting off the wrong spirit.

  • “All the ways of a man are clean in his own eyes; but the LORD weigheth the spirits.” Proverbs 16:2 (KJV)
  • “Why do you look at the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye and pay no attention to the plank in your own eye?” Matthew 7:3
    • It is easy to see our wife’s (husband’s) lack of respect; yet not see the beam of our own anger.
    • It is easy to see our children’s disobedience or stubbornness; yet not see the beam of our own wrath.
  • Do your parent’s or grandparents have a problem with anger? Anger is often like a family curse that is passed from generation to generation.
  • An angry spirit manifests itself in a harshness that keeps those around us on edge. It cuts back on a person’s life potential. An angry spirit causes people to be afraid to be around you. Not the fearful respect that accompanies any strong leader. Instead this is a wrong sense of fear that is caused by the unpredictability of a man or woman with an angry spirit.
  • The spirit of anger is the very opposite of the spirit of Christ; which is the spirit of meekness and gentleness.

4. Victory in the area of the spirit others sense coming from you is more important than victory in the area of actions others see you doing.

  • It is easy to be deceived in this area and feel that you are fine; because you obey the letter of the law but disobey the spirit of the law.
    • “But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law.” Galatians 5:18
    • “Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cummin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former.” Matthew 23:23
  • It is more important to have victory over the spirit of anger than the outward manifestations of anger. Where there is victory in the spirit; there is far more likely to be victory in the outward manifestations. Deal with the attitude toward anger and the action won’t be as likely to be a problem.
  • Step away; not just from anger but from getting angry.
    • “My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry,” James 1:19

5. There is no Biblical justification for either anger or a spirit of anger.

  • A typical Christian’s attitude toward anger is that there is a place for anger, it can be a useful tool in the right setting or circumstance, it releases tension, there is always a need for righteous indignation. All that matters is what the Bible says.
    • “Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret—it leads only to evil.” Psalm 37:8
    • “A hot-tempered man must pay the penalty; if you rescue him, you will have to do it again.” Proverbs 19:19
    • “Anger is cruel and fury overwhelming, but who can stand before jealousy?” Proverbs 27:4
    • “Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth in the bosom of fools.” Ecclesiastes 7:9 (KJV)
  • There are some things in life that you get victory over because you know you just can’t do them. The consequences for those things are far too great. There are some things that you just don’t do at your house: “Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,” Galatians 5:19-20 (KJV)
    • You don’t bring X-rated movies to your house and watch them as a family.
    • You don’t bring and idol into your living room and bow down before it.
    • You don’t bring have a witch come into your house and hold a séance.
    • And you don’t get angry in your house. “Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger…be put away from you…” Ephesians 4:31
    • “But now you must rid yourselves of all such things as these: anger, rage, malice, slander, and filthy language from your lips.” Colossians 3:8
  • “Righteous Indignation” is not found in scripture. Indignation is found 4 times and is described as “great” or “fiery.” Twice it is God’s indignation and twice it is man’s indignation. The indignation of God was righteous and the indignation of man was sin.
    • Could God give his wrath to someone? If he did; he would violate his own command to let all wrath be put away from you (Ephesians 4:31).
      • There are illustrations in the Bible where it appears that someone is receiving or assuming God’s wrath. But when you see the result; you realize that man cannot handle wrath at all…even God’s wrath. (Moses, Sampson, King Saul, etc.)
      • If God gave “righteous indignation” to man; man would turn it into unrighteous indignation.

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Freedom From The Spirit Of Anger by: Dr. S. M. Davis

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I would love to hear your thoughts and stories if you have ever dealt with anger in your life!

Please feel free to comment on my posts and/or e-mail me at: hearttreasurescontact@yahoo.com

*****

You can find links to all posts in this series on the Anger Series Index page.

Image found on Google Images.

Anger The Destroyer

Last year my mom introduced me to sermons on dvd by Dr. S. M. Davis. He is a dynamic preacher who clearly presents God’s Word in a way that is easy to understand. I have purchased several of his sermons and have referenced them many times in my blogs. I have learned a lot from them and highly encourage you to listen to and/or watch Dr. Davis’ sermons if you ever get the chance.

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In the first sermon in Dr. Davis’ Anger Series, Anger The Destroyer, describes how bad anger really is. (Anything in Bold is directly quoted from the sermon.)

ANGER DECEIVES

  1. Anger feels justified (“I have a right to be angry”).
  2. Anger sometimes seems to work.
  3. There is no justification for anger.
    • When you stand before God; He is not going to ask you if you had a good excuse for your rebellion, disobedience, bitterness, bad attitude, anger, etc.

ANGER DESCRIBED

  1. Anger is like a city without walls. “He that hath no rule over his own spirit is like a city that is broken down, and without walls.” Proverbs 25:28 (KJV)
    • Anger makes you weak and vulnerable so that you and those under you can be destroyed.
  2. Anger is like an unbearable load. “A stone is heavy, and the sand weighty; but a fool’s wrath is heavier than them both.” Proverbs 27:3 (KJV)
    • “Heavier” = massive, abundant, burdensome, difficult, and oppressive
  3. Anger is like a flood. “Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous; but who is able to stand before envy?” Proverbs 27:4 (KJV)
    • “Outrageous” = “a downpour or flood”
  4. Anger is like a poisonous snake. “Wrath is cruel, and anger is outrageous; but who is able to stand before envy?” Proverbs 27:4 (KJV)
    • “Cruel” used in Deuteronomy 32:33 refers to the “venom of asps” (KJV)
  5. Anger is like a fire breathing dragon. Job 41
    • Cruel and fierce

Image courtesy of Google Images

ANGER DISCOVERED

  1. Anger comes from Pride. “Proud and haughty scorner is his name, who dealeth in proud wrath.” Proverbs 21:24 (KJV) & Matthew 18
  2. Anger comes from tensions created by unresolved guilt.

Your anger isn’t caused by what is outside of you;

it is caused by what is happening inside of you.

ANGER DEFEATED

  1. Quit justifying your anger.
  2. Accept personal responsibility for your anger. Fight the anger not the consequences of anger. “A hot-tempered man must pay the penalty; if you rescue him, you will have to do it again.” Proverbs 19:19
  3. Confess any pride by humbling yourself before God and others and ask for help.
  4. Deal with unresolved guilt.
  5. Forgive others. Leave vengeance to God.
  6. Seek to become meek and gentle like Jesus. Meekness is strength under control and anger is weakness in control.
  7. Think of the blessings that will be yours when you cease to be an angry person.

*****

I think the reason I did not start dealing with my anger until a year and a half ago is because I justified it. Every time I got angry I had a right to respond that way because someone did me wrong. In Matthew 5:21-22 Jesus says, “You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘Do not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to his brother, ‘Raca,’* is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell.” Most people will agree that murder is a sin. Jesus takes it a step further and clearly says that anger is also. Jesus is speaking of the heart of the matter. Anger leads to murder. Although you may not murder someone physically; when you are angry with someone you either temporarily or permanently murder that person in your spirit. In the King James Version, Matthew 5:22 uses the phrase “angry…without a cause.” Dr. Davis points out that all other times this phrase is used in scripture; “without a cause” means “there is no cause.” (1 Samuel 19:5, Psalm 35:19, Psalm 69:4, Psalm 109:3, Psalm 119:78, Psalm 119:161, Matthew 5:22, John 15:25).

When I finally realized that was sinning in my anger;

I was finally able to start moving in the direction of healing.

Just as I did for most of my life; many of you will argue that “anger is not a sin” based on the fact that Jesus got angry or Ephesians 4:26 “In your anger do not sin…” Please note that Dr. Davis addresses those arguments among others in his sermon Freedom From the Spirit of Anger-Part 1 and Freedom From The Spirit Of Anger Part 2. In the mean time, pray that God will open your heart to the truths of scripture even if he reveals to you something different from what you have been taught for years. This is what happened to me.

* “Raca” means “empty headed one”

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Anger The Destroyer by: Dr. S. M. Davis

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I would love to hear your thoughts and stories if you have ever dealt with anger in your life!

Please feel free to comment on my posts and/or e-mail me at:  hearttreasurescontact@yahoo.com

*****

You can find links to all posts in this series on the Anger Series Index page.

My Redeemer Lives!

HAPPY (belated) EASTER Everyone! Yesterday was a completely full and busy day; so I went to bed early instead of staying up to write. I hope that you all had a wonderful holy weekend! Since I shared with you the service that we had on Good Friday; I thought that today I would share Sunday’s service with you as well.

On Friday we left the darkened sanctuary with black fabric, the wooden cross, and burned out candle displayed in front of the tomb on the platform…

Sunday morning; the set up was pretty much the same (although there was sunlight coming in through the windows). The service started with someone (same guy from Friday) singing “Were You There When They Crucified My Lord”; then Pastor Brian greeted the congregation. The worship team (which I am apart of) along with the congregation sang a hymn melody of “Christ The Lord Is Risen Today” and “Crown Him”. While we sang; two of our teens came to the platform dressed in white. They laid the cross on its side in front of the candle, covered the black cloth with a white cloth, and placed several flowers on the tomb display. Finally, as we were finishing our songs, the teens simultaneously lit the candle and turned on a light inside of the tomb.

Pastor Brian then did what we call a “Children’s Chat.” All of the kids went to the platform and Pastor Brian and a man dressed as Jesus had a brief conversation about how Jesus is now alive!

After the children went back to their seats; the worship team & congregation sang “He Reigns”. Pastor Brian preached a short but powerful sermon. Following the sermon; I gave a very short testimony about how God is working in my life (I was asked ahead of time if I would do this and even though I practiced; I still teared up). Someone else gave their testimony also. Then the people who will be going to the Philippines on a short term mission trip went up to the altar so that the congregation could pray for them (they are going over spring break next week).

Finally we recited the “Apostle’s Creed”* as a congregation then sang “My Savior My God” to close the service.

Throughout the service Matthew 28 was read as well. I have included it here in story form as told by The Message Bible (in the service it was read in a different version).

Matthew 28

Risen from the Dead

1-4 After the Sabbath, as the first light of the new week dawned, Mary Magdalene and the other Mary came to keep vigil at the tomb. Suddenly the earth reeled and rocked under their feet as God’s angel came down from heaven, came right up to where they were standing. He rolled back the stone and then sat on it. Shafts of lightning blazed from him. His garments shimmered snow-white. The guards at the tomb were scared to death. They were so frightened, they couldn’t move.

5-6The angel spoke to the women: “There is nothing to fear here. I know you’re looking for Jesus, the One they nailed to the cross. He is not here. He was raised, just as he said. Come and look at the place where he was placed.

7“Now, get on your way quickly and tell his disciples, ‘He is risen from the dead. He is going on ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there.’ That’s the message.”

8-10The women, deep in wonder and full of joy, lost no time in leaving the tomb. They ran to tell the disciples. Then Jesus met them, stopping them in their tracks. “Good morning!” he said. They fell to their knees, embraced his feet, and worshiped him. Jesus said, “You’re holding on to me for dear life! Don’t be frightened like that. Go tell my brothers that they are to go to Galilee, and that I’ll meet them there.”

11-15Meanwhile, the guards had scattered, but a few of them went into the city and told the high priests everything that had happened. They called a meeting of the religious leaders and came up with a plan: They took a large sum of money and gave it to the soldiers, bribing them to say, “His disciples came in the night and stole the body while we were sleeping.” They assured them, “If the governor hears about your sleeping on duty, we will make sure you don’t get blamed.” The soldiers took the bribe and did as they were told. That story, cooked up in the Jewish High Council, is still going around.

16-17Meanwhile, the eleven disciples were on their way to Galilee, headed for the mountain Jesus had set for their reunion. The moment they saw him they worshiped him. Some, though, held back, not sure about worship, about risking themselves totally.

18-20Jesus, undeterred, went right ahead and gave his charge: “God authorized and commanded me to commission you: Go out and train everyone you meet, far and near, in this way of life, marking them by baptism in the threefold name: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Then instruct them in the practice of all I have commanded you. I’ll be with you as you do this, day after day after day, right up to the end of the age.”

***THE MESSAGE BIBLE***

(The goal of The Message is to engage people in the reading process and help them understand what they read. This is not a study Bible, but rather “a reading Bible.”)

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*The Apostle’s Creed states:

“I believe in God the Father, Almighty, Maker of heaven and earth:

And in Jesus Christ, his only begotten Son, our Lord:

Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary:

Suffered under Pontius Pilate; was crucified, dead and buried: He descended into hell:

The third day he rose again from the dead:

He ascended into heaven, and sits at the right hand of God the Father Almighty:

From thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead:

I believe in the Holy Ghost:

I believe in the universal** church: the communion of saints:

The forgiveness of sins:

The resurrection of the body:

And the life everlasting. Amen.”

**(The traditional Apostle’s Creed says “holy catholic church”)