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Dec 062016
 

pastor500December, 2016

Dear Friends,       

An article on Christmas that mentioned some parents, in an attempt to stave off greed and materialism in the hearts of their children, limit the number of Christmas presents each child receives to three.  The rational is that if three gifts were enough for Jesus then three should be enough for any child.  I remember one year, as a child, when things were really ‘tight financially’ in our family, when my brother Eddie and I received only one gift each.

As you prepare for the coming holiday and the gifts that ‘must’ be purchased for others, consider for a few moments the gifts the baby Jesus received from the ‘wise men’ in Matthew 2:11.

 Gold is a gift for a king – remember that Jesus Christ is King.  Is He your King this Christmas season?  When you are thinking what gift to give others, considered giving yourself afresh to Jesus as your King. (See Romans 12: 1, 2; 6:13; 1 Corinthians 6:20)  There is no better present the Lord could receive from you this year than yourself.

Frankincense is a gift for a priest – The function of a priest is to open the way to God for men.  That is what Jesus did with His work on the cross and with His resurrection from the dead.  We can come “boldly” into the Heavenly Father’s presence now. (See Hebrews 10:11-12, 19; esp. 4:16).  The Latin word for priest is pontifex, and means ‘bridge builder”.  A priest is a man who builds a bridge between God and man.  That is exactly what the Lord Jesus did.  He opened the way to God for each of us.

Myrrh is a gift for one who is going to die – Myrrh was used to embalm the bodies of the dead.  Years ago I conducted a Christmas Cantata entitled “Born to Die Upon Calvary”.  The music and words were a great blessing to all.  The baby Jesus came to give His life and then His death for the people of the world (see John 3:16) if we would just accept Him as our Savior.  Myrrh speaks of the sacrifice Jesus made on the cross for us. (See Matthew 27:31; 1 Corinthians 15:3-4; Romans 5:6; Ephesians 5:2).

Thank the Lord Jesus, that He loved us (Romans 5:8) and that He came and lived as the perfect God/Man, that He might provide salvation (Acts 4:12) for mankind.  That is His gift to you this Christmas.

Now, what will you give to Jesus as your gift to Him this year?

While dating my future wife, Marion Jannette, in high school, her parents invited me to a Christmas dinner with the family. At the end of the meal, Mrs. Proehl came into the room with a birthday cake with a candle on it – and everyone sang “Happy Birthday to the Baby Jesus”.  I must say that left quite an impression on me.

This Christmas, it is the Lord’s birthday we are remembering.  Not all the fanfare, festivity and frivolity. May each of you have a blessed and rejoicing Christmas, thinking of and thanking the One it is all about.

Remember – “Jesus is the reason for the season.”

God’s blessing on you all,

Pastor's Sig 04-29-16

 

 

Pastor Frederick W. Carroll

Psalm 3:8  “Salvation belongeth unto the Lord: thy blessing is upon thy people.”

Nov 032016
 

pastor500November, 2016

Dear Friends,

I trust you have prayed and decided on your election choices. Remember what the Bible says in Daniel 4:17, “…know that the most High ruleth in the kingdom of men, and giveth it to whomsoever He will, and setteth up over it the basest of men.”  I am not trying to be smart or cruel, but we need to remember the Lord God Almighty is sovereign.

Let’s change ‘gears’ and deal with something else this month.  It is the month of Thanksgiving (November 24th).  Consider with me the admonition in Scripture to “give thanks”.  1 Timothy 2:1 states, “I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men.”

This means that we thank God for hearing and answering – thank Him for what He has done, and is going to do for all men.  We are to give thanks in all things.  How can we thank God for terrible trials, such as accidents and death and sin?  We cannot; this is not what the Scripture means.  What God means is to thank Him for His presence (see John 14:18; Hebrews 13:5b) and power (see Romans 8:31-39) as we walk through such trials (see Romans 8:28).  In Christ Jesus there is victory and triumph over all (see 1 Corinthians 15:57), no matter how terrible.  Therefore, in everything (not for everything), as we walk through all – thank God for the victory He has given us through Christ.

One more passage – Philippians 4:6-7 “Be careful for nothing; but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” One of the steps to peace in your life is prayer (4:6-7) and positive thinking (4:8-9).  The remedy for anxiety and worry: prayer.  The four words used for prayer show exactly how prayer is the answer to anxiety and worry.

  1. Prayer refers to the special times of prayer when we share periods of devotion and worship. Do you have a set time for this?
  2. Supplication refers to the prayers that focus on special needs. We pour out our soul to God.  We lay our needs before Him as a child crying, pleading and begging for His help, comfort, deliverance and peace.  Do you have times for this?
  3. Thanksgiving means that we thank and praise God for all He is and for all He has done for us. Do you do this often?
  4. Requests mean specific and definite requests. Our prayer is not to be general, but specific.  Tell your Lord exactly what is needed.

Brethren, we are to walk in God – live, move and have our being in Him – and we do this by prayer.  We pray “in everything” – all day long, as we walk and move about our daily affairs.

  1. We pray in times that are specifically set aside for devotion and worship.
  2. We supplicate – struggle in prayer – when facing times of deep and intense need.
  3. We offer thanksgiving (and praise) all day long, as we walk and move about.
  4. We offer our requests – specific requests – to God. We ask Him to do definite things, as we walk throughout the day.

Just some thoughts to help you as you go through the month of November.

Working on being more thankful,

Pastor's Sig 04-29-16
 
 

Pastor Frederick W. Carroll
Philippians 4:13

Oct 032016
 

pastor500October 2016

Dear Friends,

Here we are in the middle of election season. On the eighth of November, the people of the United States of America will choose another president and a congress to lead our country. The choices for president are not the best I would have hoped for, but one of them will become our next leader.

I trust you have and will continue to pray for the candidates’ safety in these turbulent and troubling times. Also that you are praying as to which candidates you will eventually vote for. This pastor will not tell you who to vote for, that is your responsibility, it is yours to intelligently make up your minds and then to act. I pray you, God’s children, true Christians, will be wise in your choices this election.

Speaking about “election” specifically God’s choosing of people; consider Ryrie’s Study Bible definition of election in his “Synopsis of Bible Doctrine.” He states: “God’s unconditional and pretemporal choice of those individuals whom He would save.”

1 Peter 1:2 states, “Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father…” This means that in eternity past, God chose them to belong to Himself. One commentator said that this doctrine “allows God to be God”. God is sovereign and any difficulty in reconciling God’s election and human responsibility “lies in man’s mind, not in God’s”. It is clear from the study of the Bible that the doctrines of God’s election and human responsibility, both should be believed. William MacDonald states, “While there is unutterable mystery in God’s choice, we can be sure there is nothing unjust about it.”

Ryrie’s footnote in 1 Peter 1:2 states: “The idea expressed in this verse is that God in His wisdom has chosen us to salvation through the work of the Holy Spirit…” Look at John 15:16 & 19 and consider your responsibility as Christians. Now look at Ephesians 1:4-5. It should be noted here that “the Bible never teaches that God chooses men to be lost”. Realize that if left alone all men would be lost. God does have the right to show mercy on some. The Bible teaches human responsibility. The message to the unsaved, regardless of the issues with election and human responsibility, is simply “whosoever will, may come”. (See John 1:12; 3:16, 18, 36; 5:24; 11:25-26; 12:44; 20:31; Acts 16:31; 1 John 5:13, etc.)

In this election when you go to the polls to make your choices, consider the words of 2 Peter 1:10: “give diligence to make your calling and election sure.” Ryrie’s footnote states: “i.e. confirm one’s profession of faith by godly living”. Our election took place before the world was made (doesn’t that blow your mind); our calling takes place when we are converted. We can’t make our call surer but we can confirm it by growing in the likeness of the Lord. By manifesting the fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22, 23), we can provide unmistakable evidence that we truly belong to the Lord. Dear ones, realize this, a holy life proves the reality of our salvation.

Just one more thing along this line of thinking – our eternal security. The New Testament is replete with verses that teach salvation can never be lost or rejected (by apostasy) and that we can have present assurance of this – look up and ponder these verses – John 5:24; 6:39-40; 10:27-28; 17:12; Heb 10:14; Rom 8:16, 29-30, 37-39; Eph 1:13-14; Phil 1:6; 2 Tim 1:12; 2:13; 1 John 5:13; and one of my favorite passages, Jude 24-25, “Now unto Him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy…”

Yes, America has an election on November 8th. Our Heavenly Father had an election in eternity past and I am thankful to have been included in that election. Eph 1:4 “…He hath chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy without blame before Him in love.”

Rejoicing in God’s goodness,
Pastor's Sig 04-29-16

 

 

Frederick W. Carroll, ThD

Aug 312016
 

pastor500September 2016

Dear Friends,

In today’s world, people are very much concerned with the problems of hunger – providing bread to those who have none. We Christians should also be concerned about hunger, i.e. the spiritual hunger in mankind’s heart. So this year our missions theme is “Giving the Bread of Life”. Jesus, in speaking to the people in John 6 says, far more important than bread for the physical man is bread for the spiritual man, the Bread of Life! Jesus is the need that the world has. He makes a tremendous proclamation when He says, “I am the Bread of Life: he that cometh to Me shall never hunger.” And He has been fulfilling this promise for over two thousand years. All those who have ever come to Him hungry, distressed, discouraged, and have received Him in faith have found “heart-satisfaction”.

Mankind by its nature is soul-starved, pining away because of the want of soul’s food. They are so dead (see Ephesians 2:1-5) that they do not know or feel this need. God has given us the responsibility to share the truth that Jesus is the Spiritual Bread that all mankind needs for eternal life. “He that believeth on me hath everlasting life. I am the Bread of Life.” (John 6:47-48)

A great missionary of the generation wrote: “A great ‘without’ is written over heathenism. Men and women are without a Bible, without a Sunday, and WITHOUT righteousness. They have homes without peace, marriages without sanctity. Their young men and women are without ideals, the little children without purity, the mothers are without wisdom, or self-control. There is poverty without relief, sickness without skill or care, sorrow without sympathy, sin without remedy, death without hope WITHOUT Christ. All this is wrapped up in the words, ‘without Christ’. This is why Christ has told us to go into all the world and preach the Gospel. This is why we urge you to give and pray WITHOUT stint, for the only answer for the world WITHOUT is to have Christ WITHIN.”

Yes, the world is without the Bread of Life and we must share it – offer it to others – giving to those who will receive it. We need to really get serious about this matter of missions. It is amazing what God’s people can do when they really try. Perhaps we should adopt the motto of the French Foreign Legion:
“If I falter, push me on, If I stumble, pick me up; If I retreat, shoot me.”

All true Christians agree with the absolute necessity of Christ’s dying and rising again as fundamental to their salvation; (Luke 24:46) but the thought does not stop there, it goes on to v. 48, saying: “And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name among all nations.” The whole Bible is a missionary book. Bible teaching, expounded properly, produces missionary going and missionary giving. The Gospel message, proclaimed properly, produces missionary outreach “among all nations.”

This year, as never before, ask God to burden your heart for the lost around you – men and women, boys and girls, friends and foes, relatives and revolutionaries. Ask Him to burden you so much that you will just have to share the “Bread of Life” with others, both by GOING and GIVING.

To urge and encourage us on, our annual Missions Conference is Sept. 21 (Wed) – 25 (Sun). Our missionary instructor of indigenous pastors, Dr. Mike Davidson will be sharing from God’s Word. Plan on attending each service. Saturday night we will have the “International Supper” at 6:00 p.m. Please bring different kinds of food and we will share, followed by a video, “George Whitefield’s Chickens and Baptist Ducks.” Sunday is Faith Promise/Grace Giving day when we make our commitment to mission-giving for the year. Don’t miss one day.

Thankful for “the Bread of Life – Jesus, the Christ”.

Pastor's Sig 04-29-16

 

 

Pastor Frederick Carroll