Sunday 10:30 Join us!
Guest Speaker - Craig Groeschel
Topic: What Jesus Did for Us!
[And this brings me to] the other sense of glory—glory as brightness, splendour, luminosity. We are to shine as the sun, we are to be given the Morning Star. I think I begin to see what it means. In one way, of course, God has given us the Morning Star already: you can go and enjoy the gift on many fine mornings if you get up early enough. What more, you may ask, do we want? Ah, but we want so much more—something the books on aesthetics take little notice of. But the poets and the mythologies know all about it. We do not want merely to see beauty, though, God knows, even that is bounty enough. We want something else which can hardly be put into words—to be united with the beauty we see, to pass into it, to receive it into ourselves, to bathe in it, to become part of it. That is why we have peopled air and earth and water with gods and goddesses and nymphs and elves—that, though we cannot, yet these projections can enjoy in themselves that beauty, grace, and power of which Nature is the image. That is why the poets tell us such lovely falsehoods. They talk as if the west wind could really sweep into a human soul; but it can’t. They tell us that “beauty born of murmuring sound” will pass into a human face; but it won’t. Or not yet. For if we take the imagery of Scripture seriously, if we believe that God will one day give us the Morning Star and cause us to put on the splendour of the sun, then we may surmise that both the ancient myths and the modern poetry, so false as history, may be very near the truth as prophecy. At present we are on the outside of the world, the wrong side of the door. We discern the freshness and purity of morning, but they do not make us fresh and pure. We cannot mingle with the splendours we see. But all the leaves of the New Testament are rustling with the rumour that it will not always be so. Some day, God willing, we shall get in. When human souls have become as perfect in voluntary obedience as the inanimate creation is in its lifeless obedience, then they will put on its glory, or rather that greater glory of which Nature is only the first sketch.
From The Weight of Glory
Compiled in Words to Live By
The Weight of Glory: And Other Addresses. Copyright © 1949, C. S. Lewis Pte. Ltd. Copyright renewed © 1976, revised 1980 C. S. Lewis Pte. Ltd. All rights reserved. Used with permission of HarperCollins Publishers. Words to Live By: A Guide for the Merely Christian. Copyright © 2007 by C. S. Lewis Pte. Ltd. All rights reserved. Used with permission of HarperCollins Publishers.
A Child’s Faith-Filled Prayer and God’s Amazing Answer: Investigating the Faith by Lee Strobel @ biblegateway
"... Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
Matthew 17:20, NIV
In Equatorial Africa, far from pharmacies and hospitals, a woman died in childbirth, leaving behind a grieving two-year-old daughter and a premature baby in danger of succumbing to the chill of the night. With no incubator, no electricity, and few supplies, the newborn’s life was in jeopardy.
A helper filled a hot water bottle to maintain the warmth desperately needed by the infant, but suddenly the rubber burst—and it was the last hot water bottle in the village.
A visiting missionary physician from Northern Ireland, Dr. Helen Roseveare, asked the orphans to pray for the situation—but a faith-filled ten-year-old named Ruth seemed to go too far.
“Please, God, send us a water bottle,” she implored. “It’ll be no good tomorrow, God, the baby’ll be dead; so please send it this afternoon.” As if that request was not sufficiently audacious, she added, “And while You are about it, would You please send a dolly for the little girl so she’ll know You really love her?”
Recalled Roseveare, “I was put on the spot. Could I honestly say, ‘Amen’? I just did not believe that God could do this. Oh, yes, I know that He can do everything. The Bible says so, but there are limits, aren’t there?”
The only hope of getting a water bottle would be from a parcel sent from the homeland, but she had never received one during the almost four years she had lived there. “Anyway,” she mused, “if anyone did send a parcel, who would put in a hot water bottle? I live on the equator!”
A couple of hours later, a car dropped off a twenty-two-pound package. The orphans helped open it and sort through the contents: some clothing for them, bandages for the leprosy patients, and a bit of food.
Oh, and this: “As I put my hand in again, I felt the . . . could it really be? I grasped it, and pulled it out. Yes. A brand-new rubber, hot water bottle!” said Roseveare. “I cried. I had not asked God to send it; I had not truly believed that He could.”
With that, little Ruth rushed forward. “If God has sent the bottle, He must have sent the dolly too!” she exclaimed.
She dug through the packaging and found it at the bottom of the parcel: a beautifully dressed doll. Asked Ruth, “Can I go over with you, Mummy, and give this dolly to that little girl, so she’ll know that Jesus really loves her?”
That parcel had been packed five months earlier by Roseveare’s former Sunday school class. The leader, feeling prompted by God, included the hot water bottle; a girl contributed the doll.
And this package, the only one ever to arrive, was delivered the same day Ruth prayed for it with the faith of a child.
Philip Melanchton - Gentleman German Reformer
The body of Philip Melanchthon (1497 - 1560) appropriately lies buried beside that of Martin Luther in Wittenberg. He is considered the second man—the gentleman—of the German Reformation, faithfully working alongside Luther for nearly three decades. Orphaned at ten, Melanchthon lived with his grandmother until he enrolled at the University of Heidelberg at age twelve to study philosophy, astronomy, and rhetoric. At sixteen he pursued graduate studies in theology at the University of Tübingen. A student of Erasmus, he was a published author by the time Luther (fourteen years his senior) was posting his Ninety-five Theses.
Melanchthon's opposition to scholastic theology prompted him to question Catholic dogma and traditions. At the same time he learned of Luther's insights. In 1518 he accepted a post at the University of Wittenberg, and the two scholars became life-long partners. Brilliant and popular, Melanchthon drew students much like Abelard did four centuries earlier. He was courted by other academic institutions, but with Luther and others playing cupid, he married Katharina Krapp, daughter of the Wittenberg mayor.
One of Melanchthon's most important achievements was his contribution, at the behest of Luther, to the Augsburg Confession. These twenty-eight articles, written in both Latin and German, were presented to Emperor Charles V, who summoned a Diet at Augsburg in 1530 to settle the religious differences among the German princes and people. Melanchthon began with his usual conciliatory style, affirming twenty-one statements accepted by both Catholics and Reformers. The remaining seven articles focused on matters disputed with Catholics, all supported with Scripture. The Augsburg Confession established the German Reformation on justification by faith alone and serves today as a foundational document of Lutheran belief.
In the remaining years of his life, Melanchthon was embroiled in family and religious difficulties. Although he was considered by many to be Luther's successor, opponents challenged his loyalty to the Reformation cause, insisting he was too eager to compromise with Catholics. Harshly criticized in his own day, he has been admired in recent generations for his keen intellect and his careful scholarship as well as for his efforts to foster unity among Christians. He was ever the patient and kind Reformer, generous to a fault.