“From the Pastor’s Office”
Week of May 12, 2109
Enter to Worship
· Scripture Memorization Verse (5/19): Mark 9:24
· Sermon Review (5/12): “Disciplined Discipleship” / Mark 9:40-52
-Biblical Context: Mark 9:42-50 brings chapter 9 to completion. Chapter 9 began with the account of the Transfiguration, followed by Jesus’ healing of a boy after the disciples’ failure to do so, followed by Jesus again predicting his death and resurrection, and finally, followed by the disciples discussing who will be the greatest. After this discussion, Jesus uses a child as an example of what an ideal disciple looked like according to God’s economy. A child was the lowest person on the social ladder, and thus was totally dependent. A biblical disciple is lowly and humble, not arrogant and great in his or her own eyes. Now, in vv. 42-50, Jesus continues this theme of discipleship with the emphasis of radical discipline. This discipline has a two-fold purpose: 1) To confront sin in our lives 2) To allow the trials we experience for the sake of the gospel to purify us and to forge in us the character of peace that should characterize the people of God. That is, biblical disciples take sin seriously and seek to live in peace with one another in the context of the local church.
-Application for New Life: This text fell on Mother’s Day Sunday. Just as our mothers disciplined us for the sake of our growth in obedience and character, so does Jesus discipline his disciples in the same manner. Jesus speaks in hyperbole (exaggerated speech) in order to make a point and not sugar-coat the cost of discipleship. Following Jesus is serious and difficult. Yes, joy and blessings come from following Christ; however, they come as a result of our obedience in the face of trials! Jesus is building a new community, a new family (cf. Mark 3:31-34) that is to be at peace with one another. We cannot experience such peace until we understand that to be a disciple of Jesus is to walk in humility like a child, to fight sin in our lives and to allow our sufferings to work as purifying fire (cf. 1 Peter 1:7) to make us more like Jesus. Such a biblical community, though not perfect, can experience Christ’s peace with one another. Let us be a church (or better yet, “the” church) in Vance Co. where those in the midst of chaos apart from Christ can find a community, a family filled with the peace of God!
· “Dinner and Devotion” (5/15): Dinner and Devotion- The Apostle Paul: His Life and Ministry
· Sunday Morning Preview (5/19): The Biblical Jesus
· “Dessert and Discipleship” (5/19): Dessert and Discipleship: Prayer According to the New Testament
Depart to Serve
· 2019 Offering for Brittany: Sister Brittany’s final payment for her medical mission trip with Campbell University is due May 24. There are two weeks left to give and one Sunday before the payment is due. Thank you to all who have given so far!
· 2019 Prayer Ministry: New Life Prayer ministry kicked off Easter Sunday! In our Sunday Night “Dessert and Discipleship” gatherings, we will begin studying what prayer is according to the New Testament. Also, an official date for a regular prayer ministry will be announced soon and will begin in June.