Central Church of Christ Blog

Sermon notes: 9/19 RR3: Proper Burial

WELCOME to CENTRALCHURCH OF CHRIST: Not a place, but a people connected by a common bond of Christ our Savior with a common mission to show HIS love, tell HIS story, and be HIS people!  We’re on week 3 of an expository sermon series this week that I’m calling the “ROMAN ROAD.”  Expository means we learn from the text, and bring out it’s points, rather than topical, which is where we have a point and use the text to support it.  So here we are digging in for a while in the beautiful letter to the Romans from Paul.  The first week we saw in Romans 1 about Creation that God is there and he really cares for us!  Last week in Romans 3 we gained a more full understanding of the nature of &&&Justifying Grace in Salvation. This week, Romans 6 connects us to a very poignant image concerning God’s saving Grace. 

Romans 6:3-4“.. don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his DEATH?

Romans 6:2 says “…We DIED to sin; how can we live in it any longer?”

Romans 6:6 says “For we know that our old self was CRUCIFIED with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin”

 

Colossians 3:3 “For you DIED, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.”

2 Timothy 2:11 “Here is a trustworthy saying: If we DIED with him, we will also live with him”

 

John 3:23 tells us – “Now John (the Baptist) also was baptizing at Aenon near Salim, because there was PLENTY OF WATER…”

“… both Philip and the eunuch went down into the water and Philip baptized him. When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord suddenly took Philip away, and the eunuch did not see him again, but went on his way rejoicing.” Acts 8:38-39

DIDACHE***Chapter 7. Concerning Baptism

And concerning baptismbaptize this way: Having first said all these things, baptize into the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy SpiritMatthew 28:19 in living water. But if you have not living water, baptize into other water; and if you can not in cold, in warm.

https://www.newadvent.org/fathers/0714.htm

Romans 6:4 

 “We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.”

  •  

****Acts 16:26-33 tells us

 “About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everybody’s chains came loose.

  The jailer woke up, and when he saw the prison doors open, he drew his sword and was about to kill himself because he thought the prisoners had escaped. But Paul shouted, “Don’t harm yourself! We are all here!”

   The jailer called for lights, rushed in and fell trembling before Paul and Silas.

   He then brought them out and asked, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”

  They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved— you and your household.”

   Then they spoke the word of the Lord to him and to all the others in his house.

  AT THAT HOUR OF THE NIGHT the jailer took them and washed their wounds; then immediately he and all his family were baptized.”

 

 

***ANCIENT WORDS: For the first 1500 years of the church’s existence everybody taught that baptism was part of the salvation act. Every early church leader who talked about baptism taught this.

 

  • Justin Martyr (A.D. 110-165) said “We have learned from the apostles this reason” for baptism: “in order that we… may obtain in the water the remission of sins” (First Apology, 61).

 

  • Tertullian (A.D. 145-220) said, “Happy is our sacrament of water, in that, by washing away the sins of our early blindness, we are set free and admitted into eternal life” (On Baptism iii). Also “The act of baptism… is carnal, in that we are plunged in water, but the effect is spiritual, in that we are freed from sins” (ibid., vii).

 

  • Cyril of Jerusalem (A.D. 315-386) said, “When going down… into the water, think not of the bare element, but look for salvation by the power of the Holy Ghost” (Catechetical Lectures III:4).

 

“baptized into Christ (you have) clothed yourselves with Christ.” Galatians 3:27

  • 1 Peter 3:21 says “and this water (Noah’s Flood) symbolizes baptism that now saves you also— not the removal of dirt from the body but the pledge of a good conscience towards God. It saves you by the resurrection of Jesus Christ.”

That’s what Colossians 2:12 that says “having been buried with him in baptism and raised with him THROUGH YOUR FAITH in the power of God, who raised him from the dead.

Mark 16:16: “Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.”

 

To m


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Sermon Notes: 9/12 Roman Road 2 – What’s So Great About Grace?

The Law can be funny sometimes can’t it!  The following is a list of police comments that reportedly were taken from actual police car videos where police arrested various law-breakers:

  1. One officer told a man who was complaining about how tight the handcuffs were by saying: “Relax; the handcuffs are tight because they’re new. They’ll stretch out after you wear them awhile.”
  2. Another criminal looked like he was going to run: “If you run, you’ll only go to jail tired.”
  3. A drunk was pulled over and asked a series of questions ending with this one: “Was Mickey Mouse a cat or a dog?”
  4. “No, sir, we don’t have quotas anymore. We used to have quotas, but now we’re allowed to write as many tickets as we want.”
  5. “I’m glad to hear the Chief of Police is a good personal friend of yours. At least you know someone who can post your bail.”
  6. “You didn’t think we give pretty women tickets? You’re right, we don’t. Sign here.”
  7. “Warning? You want a warning? O.K., I’m warning you not to do that again or I’ll give you another ticket.”

https://www.heartlight.org/articles/200605/20060527_warningtickets.html

WELCOME to CENTRALCHURCH OF CHRIST: Not a place, but a people connected by a common bond of Christ our Savior with a common mission to show HIS love, tell HIS story, and be HIS people!  We’re on week 2 of a new expository sermon series this week that I’m calling the “ROMAN ROAD.”  Expository means we learn from the text, and bring out it’s points, rather than topical, which is where we have a point and use the text to support it.  So here we are digging in for a while in the beautiful letter to the Romans from Paul.   I learned that there is this “Roman Road to Salvation” that has been preached & taught in religious circles today, but it seems more like a cherry picking of verses.  We want to walk through Paul’s words and see what God’s Holy Spirit inspired him to say to believers. Last week we saw  in Romans 1 that God is there and he really cares for us!

Romans 6:23 tells us of that penalty: “…the wages of sin is death…”

Paul wrote: “through the law we become conscious of sin.” Romans 3:20

“All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God…” Romans 3:23

“So that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God.” (Rom3:19)

The Law’s main focus was not to cleanse people… it was to point to our need of to be cleansed

“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God,” – Ephesians 2:8

 

This distinction is starkly demonstrated by comparing a parable taught by Jesus with a similar story found in Buddhist literature. Both stories involve sons who became rebellious and left home, but who then saw the error of their ways and decided to come back and be reconciled with their families.

  In the Buddhist story, the errant son is required to work off the penalty for his past misdeeds by spending years as a slave.

  But you know how the Christian parable of the Prodigal Son ends — with the repentant son being warmly welcomed home by his loving father and being given UNDESERVED GRACE.

https://www.comparativereligion.com/prodigal.html

“… justified freely by his GRACE” (vs. 24)

“… because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions— it is by GRACE you have been saved. Ephesians 2:4-5

Romans 3:24.  “… are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.”

Heb 2:14-15 – “Since the children have flesh and blood, (Jesus) too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death— that is, the devil— and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.”

  Mordred (who hated his father and wanted to destroy everything Arthur held dear) gleefully declares:

“Arthur! What a magnificent dilemma!

            Let her die, your life is over;

            Let her live, your life’s a fraud.

            Which will it be, Arthur?

            Do you kill the queen or kill the law?”

 

 “Well, you’re human after all, aren’t you Arthur? Human and helpless.”

 https://www.sermoncentral.com/sermon-illustrations/6607/tale-of-two-kings-by-sermon-central

 

When nothing else could help, not even the Law, Love Lifted Us.

Love lifted me,
Love lifted me,
When nothing else could help,
Love lifted me;
Love lifted me,
Love lifted me,
When nothing else could help,
Love lifted me.


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Sermon Notes: 9/5 Roman Road1

“When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? Psalm 8:3-4

WELCOME to CENTRAL CHURCH OF CHRIST: Not a place, but a people connected by a common bond of Christ our Savior with a common mission to show HIS love, tell HIS story, and be HIS people!  We’re beginning a new expository sermon series this week that I’m calling the “ROMAN ROAD.”  Expository means we learn from the text, and bring out it’s points, rather than topical, which is where we have a point and use the text to support it.  So here we are digging in for a while in the beautiful letter to the Romans from Paul.   I learned that there is this “Roman Road to Salvation” that has been preached & taught in religious circles today, but it seems more like a cherry picking of verses.  We want to walk through Paul’s words and see what God’s Holy Spirit inspired him to say to believers.  And so he starts with Creation:

“When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? Psalm 8:3-4

 

Psalm 136

”Give thanks to the Lord of lords: His love endures forever

to him who alone does great wonders, His love endures forever.

who by his understanding made the heavens, His love endures forever.

who spread out the earth upon the waters, His love endures forever.

who made the great lights— His love endures forever.

the sun to govern the day, His love endures forever.

the moon and stars to govern the night; His love endures forever.

“For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities— his eternal power and divine nature— have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.” Romans 1:20

http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_M5bBKfTxp6s/R1SGnkCfZOI/AAAAAAAAALM/OJRjoGyV6fI/s1600-R/05-03-07-Cartoon-CLR.gif)

Geliese 581C

(GOLDILOCKS ZONE)

https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/resources/323/goldilocks-zone/

Back in 1968, Apollo 8 astronaut Bill Anders took pictures of the earth and he noted that “It was the only color we could see in the universe…”

Romans 1:18 “The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness”

“They exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served created things rather than the Creator— who is forever praised. Amen.” Romans 1:25

 

One site declared “Enjoy Nutrition as Nature Designed:” – Raw Food Diet

            https://www.naturalnews.com/raw_foods.html

Another site proclaimed “Jewelry Designed By Nature”

            https://www.boredpanda.com/floios-jewelry-designed-by-nature-from-up-cycled-silver-nature-is-created-in-golden-proportion-and-shouldnt-be-changed-by-people/?

In another place someone stated “nature designed you to hold as little muscle and as much fat as possible” (that should give us at least good excuse for being overweight!)

            https://indexarticles.com/retirement/mens-fitness/ask-the-strongman-2/

But my favorite quote was from the title of a book by an evolutionist at Amazon.com:

***“Moral Minds: How Nature Designed Our Universal Sense of Right and Wrong”.

            https://www.amazon.com/Moral-Minds-Nature-Designed-Universal/dp/B001PO6ACW/ref=sr_1_2?

***Back to ROMANS 1:18 – THE WRATH OF GOD – ME & PHOTOGRAPHER PIRACY!

            https://www.stockphotosecrets.com/questions-answers/can-i-use-photos-from-facebook.html

“The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities— his eternal power and divine nature— have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.” Romans 1:18-20

One person said it this way: “Only God is in a position to look down on someone.”  Habeeb Akande

            https://www.quotes.wiki/only-god-is-in-a-position-to-look-down-upon-som/

“All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God” Romans 3:23

 

Paul gives us a whole litany of the sins of people who are

“filled with every kind of wickedness,

They are evil, greedy and depraved.

They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice.

They are gossips, slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful;

 they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents;

they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless.

And although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.” – Romans 1:29-32

“I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile.” Romans 1:16

Consider the simple “wooly worm” or caterpillar. (saw my first one yesterday)

            https://www.almanac.com/woolly-bear-caterpillars-and-weather-prediction

Isabella Tiger Moth – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pyrrharctia_isabella

CLOSE: Astronomer Allan Sandage

   “It was my science that drove me to the conclusion that the world is much more complicated than can be explained by science. It is only through the supernatural that I can understand the mystery of existence.”

https://quotefancy.com/quote/1636834/Allan-Sandage-It-was-my-science-that-drove-me-to-the-conclusion-that-the-world-is-much

 


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Wed PM Bible Study in Auditorium

Central News: Our Wed PM Midweek Devotional will meet tomorrow night beginning in the AUDITORIUM to allow people room to social distance. Classes may choose to meet in larger spaces such as the annex upstairs, ladies classroom, etc. We will continue to livestream the first part including the devotional. Be blessed!

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Sermon Notes 8/29 Take Me Back: Martyrs Code

Take Me Back: Code of the Martyrs

Hebrews 11:1-4,Hebrews 11:35-38 – Acts 7:54-60

I was especially struck by the feel good feeling watching the end of the movie 2016, Sully, in which Captain Sullenburger and his crew safely brought Flight 1549 out of LuGuardia safely to a water landing in the Hudson River after a bird strike saving all 155 passenger and crew. It was based off a true story of 2009 events.

            One line in the movie stuck out to me. – Sully, I’ve been flying for 40 years, but I’ll be judged by 208 seconds. 3&1/2 minutes! 

 

  • ***WELCOME: To Central Church of Christ, not a place, but a people called out to Show God’s Love, Tell God’s Story, Be God’s Family. Lately we’ve been enjoying a new sermon series called, Take Me Back. It’s inspired by a desire from the elders to reexamine early Christianity, what the disciples after Jesus did, how they gathered, worshipped, and encouraged each other., and what the heart of the church looked like. It’s a desire to Take Us Back to Church.

Take me back

To the place that feels like home

To the people I can depend on

To the faith that’s in my bones

Take me back

To a preacher and a verse

Where they’ve seen me at my worst

To the love I had at first

Oh, I want to go to church

The question is, WHAT CHURCH do we go back to? 1990’s, 1950’s, late 1920’s, 1800’s, 1600’s KJV, 1500’s Martin Luther, 313AD (Constantine made state religion of Roman Empire), Church of the 2nd Century under writers (PolyCarp, Clement, Hermas, Ignatius).

 

They “conquered kingdoms, enforced justice, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions, quenched the power of fire, escaped the edge of the sword, were made strong out of weakness, became mighty in war, put foreign armies to flight.” Hebrews 11:33-34

“Some were tortured, refusing to accept release, so that they might rise again to a better life. Others suffered mocking and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword. They went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, mistreated — of whom the world was not worthy…” Hebrews 11:35-38

 

Hebrews 11:4 tells us “By faith Abel (the first man mentioned in the chapter) offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain, through which he was commended as righteous, God commending him by accepting his gifts. And through his faith, though HE DIED, he still speaks.”

 

            54 Now when they heard these things they were enraged, and they ground their teeth at him. 55 But he, full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. 56 And he said, “Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.” 57 But they cried out with a loud voice and stopped their ears and rushed togetherb] at him. 58 Then they cast him out of the city and stoned him. And the witnesses laid down their garments at the feet of a young man named Saul. 59 And as they were stoning Stephen, he called out, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” 60 And falling to his knees he cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not hold this sin against them.” And when he had said this, he fell asleep.

“Five times I received at the hands of the Jews the forty lashes less one.    Three times I was beaten with rods. Once I was stoned. Three times I was shipwrecked; a night and a day I was adrift at sea; on frequent journeys, in danger from rivers, danger from robbers, danger from my own people, danger from Gentiles, danger in the city, danger in the wilderness, danger at sea, danger from false brothers; in toil and hardship, through many a sleepless night, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure.” II Corinthians 11:24-27

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
 
Back in the 1800’s there was a successful lawyer and businessman named Horatio Spafford. He and his wife Anna had five children and it seemed that all was well with his life. But then, in 1871, his young son died of pneumonia. And in that same year, much of his business was destroyed in great Chicago fire. By 1873, he’d rebuilt his business and could afford to take a vacation with the family, so they booked an ocean liner to travel to Europe. However, because of an unexpected business issue, Spafford was forced to stay behind. But he promised he’d catch another ship and join his family later. About four days after his family left for Europe, the liner collided with another ship and quickly sank – 226 of the 313 passengers drowned, including Spafford’s 4 daughters. His wife Anna was rescued and sent a telegram to her husband “Saved, alone.” Spafford took the next available liner to be with his wife, and as his ship passed near where his daughters had died he was overcome with grief. But on that voyage, he penned the words to now famous hymn… it goes like this:

***“When peace like a river attendeth my way; When sorrows like sea billows roll. Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say “It is well, it is well with my soul.” It is well (it is well) With my soul (with my soul). It is well, it is well with my soul.

“Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked shall I return. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; blessed be the name of the LORD.” Job 1:21

 “I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39

            History holds Polycarp of Smyrna (69-155AD) as an elder of the church that met in Smyrna, just north of Ephesus in Asia Minor. Both Irenaeus (130-202AD)and Tertullian(155AD-220AD)record that Polycarp had been a disciple of John the Apostle. Jerome(342-420AD)writes that Polycarp was a disciple of John the Apostle and that John had ordained him as an elder of the church at Smyrna. The Martyrdom of Polycarp is an ancient writing dated to about 155AD and contains the final trials and words of Polycarp before he was executed. Here are the recorded words of his final prayer.

 

“O Lord God Almighty, the Father of your beloved and blessed Son Jesus Christ, by whom we have received the knowledge of You, the God of angels and powers, and of every creature, and of the whole race of the righteous who live before you, I give You thanks that You have counted me, worthy of this day and this hour, that I should have a part in the number of Your martyrs, in the cup of your Christ, to the resurrection of eternal life, both of soul and body, through the incorruption [imparted] by the Holy Ghost. Among whom may I be accepted this day before You as a fat and acceptable sacrifice, according as You, the ever-truthful God, have foreordained, have revealed beforehand to me, and now have fulfilled. Wherefore also I praise You for all things, I bless You, I glorify You, along with the everlasting and heavenly Jesus Christ, Your beloved Son, with whom, to You, and the Holy Ghost, be glory both now and to all coming ages. Amen.”

https://www.newadvent.org/fathers/0102.htm

       Revelation 21:4 says “God will wipe away every tear from (our) eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”

“By faith Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain, through which he was COMMENDED as righteous, God COMMENDING him by accepting his gifts.” Hebrews 11:4

Hebrews 11:16 “… they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one.  Therefore, God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.”

“From heaven even the most miserable life will look like one bad night at an inconvenient hotel.” Teresa of Avila


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Postponements this weekend

Out of care for our community and in an effort to limit the spread of the Covid-19 virus, the elders have decided to postpone the Sunday Bible classes and Saturday fellowship events this weekend. Men’s & Women’s breakfast events will be rescheduled to a later date.
 
Sunday services will still be at 10am in the auditorium.
 
Please continue to pray to Christ for the health of our church members affected by the virus. Thank you for your patience.

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Wed PM Service on Zoom Tonight

Changes to Wed PM Gatherings

Good afternoon church family. After much discussion & prayer among the elders last night about the coronavirus pandemic increase, our church is choosing to show community love by making temporary changes to the way we meet for study & worship. For this week only, tonight’s Wed PM will be on Zoom & Livestream @6:30pm instead of meeting in the annex. Next week we hope to make use alternative outdoor options for public gatherings. Thank you for your patience as we invest effort into offering high quality & safe gathering options. May God bless you with health & faith. 

Join us on Zoom tonight at 6:30pm.

Meeting ID: 673-063-1503

Passcode: 8362874


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Sermon Notes: 8/22 TMB Citizenship of Mathetes

SIGNUP UP FOR GROWTH GROUPS TODAY: https://forms.gle/k4HybzQD7p23ueNy9

 

Philippians 3:17-20 – Ephesians 2:11-13

The great English preacher Charles Spurgeon told of a man who had been sentenced to death by a Spanish court.  This man happened to be BOTH an American citizen AND also Englishman and the consuls of both countries decided to intervene. 

https://quod.lib.umich.edu/m/moa/ajf6281.0001.001?rgn=main;view=fulltext – Page 206

 

  • ***WELCOME: To Central Church of Christ, not a place, but a people called out to Show God’s Love, Tell God’s Story, Be God’s Family. Lately we’ve been enjoying a new sermon series called, Take Me Back. It’s inspired by a desire from the elders to reexamine early Christianity, what the disciples after Jesus did, how they gathered, worshipped, and encouraged each other., and what the heart of the church looked like. It’s a desire to Take Us Back to Church.

Take me back

To the place that feels like home

To the people I can depend on

To the faith that’s in my bones

Take me back

To a preacher and a verse

Where they’ve seen me at my worst

To the love I had at first

Oh, I want to go to church

BILL OF RIGHTS:  Think about our privilieges. We’re US citizens so we just presume we should these rights and privileges.

  • The right to free speech
  • Freedom of religion
  • The Right to bear arms
  • The right to lawful assembly

https://christianchronicle.org/bradleys-afghanistan/ – John & Jan Bradley of College Hills CofC, 13 years,, schools, hospitals, now helping people flee.  And people are risking awful costs, unsafe costs to leave it all behind to get here. 

“… REMEMBER that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world.” Ephesians 2:12

 

“Therefore, remember that formerly you who are Gentiles by birth and called ‘uncircumcised’ by those who call themselves ‘the circumcision’ (that done in the body by the hands of men)” Eph. 2:11

Acts 10:44 says “the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message.” 

“As I began to speak, the Holy Spirit came on them as he had come on us AT the beginning.” Acts 11:15

Acts 10:47 he asks the “circumcised believers” who’d come with him “Can anyone keep these people from being baptized with water?…”

Therefore, remember that FORMERLY you who are Gentiles by birth and called “uncircumcised” by those who call themselves “the circumcision” (that done in the body by the hands of men) – remember that at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenants of the promise, without hope and without God in the world. But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.” Ephesians 2:11-13

 

****MAIL CALL TO DIOGNETUS: Refreshing, exciting, and enjoyable are some of the words I’d use to describe my experience as I read through some of the ancient letters that have been preserved from the Christian world from the 1stCentury after Christ.  This week I read a letter from someone that is labeled as “Mathetes” (which means disciple in Greek) as he describes the nature of Christians to a questioner named Diognetus.  This letter has been dated to around 117AD. Some scholars connect this letter to a student of the disciple of John, because of the regular uses of “Son” and “Word” instead of the frequently used “Christ.” Whoever the writer was, he/sheoffers us a wonderful glimpse into the world of Christians after Jesus’ ascension. Here is chapter 5 and chapter 6 of the letter to Diognetus from “Mathetes.”

CH5 “For the distinction between Christians and other men, is neither in country nor language nor customs. For they do not dwell in cities in some place of their own, nor do they use any strange variety of dialect, nor practise an extraordinary kind of life. This teaching of theirs has not been discovered by the intellect or thought of busy men, nor are they the advocates of any human doctrine as some men are. Yet while living in Greek and barbarian cities, according as each obtained his lot, and following the local customs, both in clothing and food and in the rest of life, they show forth the wonderful and confessedly strange character of the constitution of their own citizenship. They dwell in their own fatherlands, but as if sojourners in them; they share all things as citizens, and suffer all things as strangers. Every foreign country is their fatherland, and every fatherland is a foreign country. They marry as all men, they bear children, but they do not expose their offspring. They offer free hospitality, but guard their purity. Their lot is cast “in the flesh,” but they do not live “after the flesh.” They pass their time upon the earth, but they have their citizenship in heaven.

https://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf01.iii.i.html

THIS WORLD IS NOT MY HOME:


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Marriage Workshop

We’re excited that we have six couples heading to Murfreesboro today and tomorrow for the Stronger Marriages workshop at Kingwood Church of Christ. Make sure to ask these couples about it when they return: Aarons, Adams, Blevins, Lankfords, Meadows, & Wiles.

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Passing of Wayne Stubblefield

Central News: It is with heavy hearts that we share that Wayne Stubblefield has passed away. He is father to Ginger Young & a former preacher of Central. Visitation will be at Highs Funeral Home in McMinnville on Saturday 11am-1pm. Graveside service will be 2pm at Mt. View Cemetery in McMinnville. Please pray for the family. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the missions efforts at Central Church of Christ, where Wayne heavily invested his time.
https://www.highfuneralhome.com/obituary/hugh-wayne-stubblefield

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Sermon Notes: 8/15 – TMB – Clement’s Plea

Take Me Back: Clement’s Plea

  • WELCOME: To Central Church of Christ, not a place, but a people called out to Show God’s Love, Tell God’s Story, Be God’s Family. Today we begin a new sermon series called, Take Me Back. It’s inspired by a desire from the elders to reexamine early Christianity, what the disciples after Jesus did, how they gathered, worshipped, and encouraged each other. It’s a desire to Take Us Back to Church.

Take me back

To the place that feels like home

To the people I can depend on

To the faith that’s in my bones

Take me back

To a preacher and a verse

Where they’ve seen me at my worst

To the love I had at first

Oh, I want to go to church

1 Peter 5:2-5 – So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a partaker in the glory that is going to be revealed:shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight, not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you; not for shameful gain, but eagerly; not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock. And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory. Likewise, you who are younger, be subject to the elders. Clothe yourselves, all of you, with humility toward one another, for “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

 

Clement I (LatinClemens RomanusGreek: Κλήμης Ῥώμης; died 99), also known as Saint Clement of Rome, is listed by Irenaeus and Tertullian as the fourth bishop of Rome, holding office from 88 AD to his death in 99 AD.[2] He is considered to be the first Apostolic Father of the Church, one of the three chief ones together with Polycarp and Ignatius of Antioch.[3]

Few details are known about Clement’s life. Clement was said to have been consecrated by Peter the Apostle,[3] and he is known to have been a leading member of the church in Rome in the late 1st century. Early church lists place him as the second or third[2][a] bishop of Rome after Peter. The Liber Pontificalis states that Clement died in Greece in the third year of Emperor Trajan‘s reign, or 101 AD.

Clement’s only genuine extant writing is his letter to the church at Corinth (1 Clement) in response to a dispute in which certain presbyters of the Corinthian church had been deposed.[2] He asserted the authority of the presbyters as rulers of the church on the ground that the Apostles had appointed such.[2] His letter, which is one of the oldest extant Christian documents outside the New Testament, was read in church, along with other epistles, some of which later became part of the Christian canon. These works were the first to affirm the apostolic authority of the clergy.[2] A second epistle, 2 Clement, was once controversially attributed to Clement, although recent scholarship suggests it to be a homily by another author.[2] In the legendary Clementine literature, Clement is the intermediary through whom the apostles teach the church.[2]

According to tradition, Clement was imprisoned under the Emperor Trajan; during this time he is recorded to have led a ministry among fellow prisoners. Thereafter he was executed by being tied to an anchor and thrown into the sea.[2] Clement is recognized as a saint in many Christian churches and is considered a patron saint of mariners. 

From <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pope_Clement_I>

 

The Church of God which sojourns at Rome, to the Church of God sojourning at Corinth, to those who are called and sanctified by the will of God, through our Lord Jesus Christ: Grace to you, and peace, from Almighty God through Jesus Christ, be multiplied.

Owing, dear brethren, to the sudden and successive calamitous events which have happened to ourselves, we feel that we have been somewhat tardy in turning our attention to the points respecting which you consulted us; and especially to that shameful and detestable sedition, utterly abhorrent to the elect of God, which a few rash and self-confident persons have kindled to such a pitch of frenzy, that your venerable and illustrious name, worthy to be universally loved, has suffered grievous injury. For who ever dwelt even for a short time among you, and did not find your faith to be as fruitful of virtue as it was firmly established? Who did not admire the sobriety and moderation of your godliness in Christ? Who did not proclaim the magnificence of your habitual hospitality? And who did not rejoice over your perfect and well-grounded knowledge? For you did all things without respect of persons, and walked in the commandments of God, being obedient to those who had the rule over you, and giving all fitting honour to the presbyters among you. You enjoined young men to be of a sober and serious mind; you instructed your wives to do all things with a blameless, becoming, and pure conscience, loving their husbands as in duty bound; and you taught them that, living in the rule of obedience, they should manage their household affairs becomingly, and be in every respect marked by discretion.

CHAPTER 2 — PRAISE OF THE CORINTHIANS CONTINUED.

Moreover, you were all distinguished by humility, and were in no respect puffed up with pride, but yielded obedience rather than extorted it, and were more willing to give than to receive? Content with the provision which God had made for you, and carefully attending to His words, you were inwardly filled with His doctrine, and His sufferings were before your eyes. Thus a profound and abundant peace was given to you all, and you had an insatiable desire for doing good, while a full outpouring of the Holy Spirit was upon you all. Full of holy designs, and with true earnestness of mind and a godly confidence, you stretched forth your hands to God Almighty, beseeching Him to be merciful to you, if you had been guilty of any involuntary transgression. Day and night you were anxious for the whole brotherhood, that the number of God’s elect might be saved with mercy and a good conscience. You were sincere and uncorrupted, and forgetful of injuries between one another. Every kind of faction and schism was abominable in your sight. You mourned over the transgressions of your neighhours: their deficiencies you deemed your own. You never grudged any act of kindness, being “ready to every good work.” Adorned by a thoroughly virtuous and religious life, you did all things in the fear of God. The commandments and ordinances of the Lord were written upon the tablets of your hearts.

CHAPTER 3 — THE SAD STATE OF THE CORINTHIAN CHURCH AFTER SEDITION AROSE IN IT FROM ENVY AND EMULATION.

Every kind of honour and happiness was bestowed upon you, and then was fulfilled that which is written, “My beloved ate and drink, and was enlarged and became fat, and kicked.” Hence flowed emulation and envy, strife and sedition, persecution and disorder, war and captivity. So the worthless rose up against the honoured, those of no reputation against such as were renowned, the foolish against the wise, the young against those advanced in years. For this reason righteousness and peace are now far departed from you, inasmuch as every one abandons the fear of God, and is become blind in His faith, neither walks in the ordinances of His appointment, nor acts a part becoming a Christian, but walks after his own wicked lusts, resuming the practice of an unrighteous and ungodly envy, by which death itself entered into the world.

CHAPTER 4 — MANY EVILS HAVE ALREADY FLOWED FROM THIS SOURCE IN ANCIENT TIMES.

For thus it is written: “And it came to pass after certain days, that Cain brought of the fruits of the earth a sacrifice to God; and Abel also brought of the firstlings of his sheep, and of the fat thereof. And God had respect to Abel and to his offerings, but Cain and his sacrifices He did not regard. And Cain was deeply grieved, and his countenance fell. And God said to Cain, Why are you grieved, and why is your countenance fallen? If you offer rightly, but do not divide rightly, have you not sinned? Be at peace: your offering returns to yourself, and you shall again possess it. And Cain said to Abel his brother, Let us go into the field. And it came to pass, while they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and killed him.” You see, brethren, how envy and jealousy led to the murder of a brother. Through envy, also, our father Jacob fled from the face of Esau his brother. Envy made Joseph be persecuted unto death, and to come into bondage. Envy compelled Moses to flee from the face of Pharaoh king of Egypt, when he heard these words from his fellow countryman, “Who made you a judge or a ruler over us? Will you kill me, as you killed the Egyptian yesterday?” On account of envy, Aaron and Miriam had to make their home outside of the camp. Envy brought down Dathan and Abiram alive to Hades, through the sedition which they excited against God’s servant Moses. Through envy, David underwent the hatred not only of foreigners, but was also persecuted by Saul king of Israel.

CHAPTER 5 — NO LESS EVILS HAVE ARISEN FROM THE SAME SOURCE IN THE MOST RECENT TIMES. THE MARTYRDOM OF PETER AND PAUL.

But not to dwell upon ancient examples, let us come to the most recent spiritual heroes. Let us take the noble examples furnished in our own generation. Through envy and jealousy, the greatest and most righteous pillars [of the Church] have been persecuted and put to death. Let us set before our eyes the illustrious apostles. Peter, through unrighteous envy, endured not one or two, but numerous labours, and when he had finally suffered martyrdom, departed to the place of glory due to him. Owing to envy, Paul also obtained the reward of patient endurance, after being seven times thrown into captivity, compelled to flee, and stoned. After preaching both in the east and west, he gained the illustrious reputation due to his faith, having taught righteousness to the whole world, and come to the extreme limit of the west, and suffered martyrdom under the prefects. Thus was he removed from the world, and went into the holy place, having proved himself a striking example of patience.

From <http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/text/1clement-roberts.html>

  • CHAPTER 57 — LET THE AUTHORS OF SEDITION SUBMIT THEMSELVES.

Ye therefore, who laid the foundation of this sedition, submit yourselves to the presbyters, and receive correction so as to repent, bending the knees of your hearts. Learn to be subject, laying aside the proud and arrogant self-confidence of your tongue. For it is better for you that you should occupy a humble but honourable place in the flock of Christ, than that, being highly exalted, you should be cast out from the hope of His people. For thus speaks all-virtuous Wisdom: “Behold, I will bring forth to you the words of My Spirit, and I will teach you My speech. Since I called, and you did not hear; I held forth My words, and you regarded not, but set at naught My counsels, and yielded not at My reproofs; therefore I too will laugh at your destruction; yea, I will rejoice when ruin comes upon you, and when sudden confusion overtakes you, when overturning presents itself like a tempest, or when tribulation and oppression fall upon you. For it shall come to pass, that when you call upon Me, I will not hear you; the wicked shall seek Me, and they shall not find Me. For they hated wisdom, and did not choose the fear of the Lord; nor would they listen to My counsels, but despised My reproofs. So they shall eat the fruits of their own way, and they shall be filled with their own ungodliness.” . . .

CHAPTER 58 — BLESSINGS SOUGHT FOR ALL THAT CALL UPON GOD.

May God, who sees all things, and who is the Ruler of all spirits and the Lord of all flesh — who chose our Lord Jesus Christ and us through Him to be a peculiar people — grant to every soul that calls upon His glorious and holy Name, faith, fear, peace, patience, long-suffering, self-control, purity, and sobriety, to the well-pleasing of His Name, through our High Priest and Protector, Jesus Christ, by whom be to Him glory, and majesty, and power, and honour, both now and for evermore. Amen.

From <http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/text/1clement-roberts.html>

 

Proverbs 29:2

“When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice; but when a wicked man rules, the people groan.” NKJV

 

Exodus 22:28 “Do not blaspheme God or curse the ruler of your people.”

Romans 13:2 “he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves”

 

Romans 13:3-5

“Would you have no fear of the one who is in authority? Then do what is good, and you will receive his approval, for he is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword in vain. For he is the servant of God, an avenger who carries out God’s wrath on the wrongdoer. Therefore one must be in subjection, not only to avoid God’s wrath but also for the sake of conscience.”

 

But Peter and John replied, ‘Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God’s sight to obey you rather than God.’” (Acts 4:18-19)

Hebrews 13:17 “Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they are keeping watch over your souls, as those who will have to give an account. Let them do this with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.”

 

“During the night Pharaoh summoned Moses and Aaron and said, ‘Up! Leave my people, you and the Israelites! Go, worship the LORD as you have requested.’” (Exodus 12:31)

Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the LORD will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Exodus 14:13-14

 


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Masks Provided at the Door Tomorrow

Central News: Good evening church family. As Covid-19 cases rise in our area (3 in our own church membership) the elders will be offering optional masks by the entrances tomorrow for anyone choosing to worship with a mask on. Thank you for being respectful & kind to others as we honor God together through Jesus Christ.

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Sermon Notes 8/8 – Take Me Back: An Amazing Growth Group

What is a “Growth Group”?

Click here or Sign Up Below: https://forms.gle/cXGYJZtUJvczRBc9A

A Growth Group is an informal gathering of people who are interested in mutually developing their own spiritual growth by investigating together what the Bible has to say about a particular subject. A Growth Group is small enough (8-12 people) to allow anyone who wishes to participate the freedom to speak or ask questions in a casual atmosphere.

Each group is directed by a leader who has reviewed the selected passages of scripture and is prepared to guide the conversation. However, no one in the group is required to speak. This self-discovery discussion format multiplies the benefits of each individual’s own study by giving them an opportunity to share insights or just “listen in” to the conversation of others.

Each group meets in a home weekly for about one hour. All lessons are self-contained and require no previous attendance, so anyone can drop-in to visit any group at any time.

If you require child-care, please let us know. We are considering multiple options for children to enhance the family experience.
 
“And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people.” – Acts 2:46-47a
 
 

2021-2022 Growth Groups

Here is our complete list of Growth Groups that will meet. All Growth Groups will begin the first meeting at 6pm on Sunday, September 12th.

Group #1

Leader: Russ Hale

Co-Leader: Roger Mason

Hosts: Paul & Amanda Stockton

Address: 349 Darlene Dr. Sparta

Group #2

Leader: John Smith

Co-Leader:

Hosts: Nathan & Ashley Aaron

Address: 328 Windsor Dr. Sparta
 

Group #3

Leader: Les Tubb

Co-Leader: Patrick Lankford

Hosts: Will & Renee England

Address: 232 Gillen Dr. Sparta

Group #4

Leader: Ty Webb

Co-Leader: Rodney Baker

Hosts: Jimmy & Pat Wallace

Address: 668 Southfork Rd. Sparta

Group #5

Leader: Topher Wiles

Co-Leader: To be determined

Hosts: Central main building

Address: 45 N. Main St. Sparta

 Group #6

Leader: Bob Young

Co-Leader: John Knox

Hosts: To be determined

Address: To be determined
 
ONLINE SIGN-UP FORM
Click here or Sign Up Below: https://forms.gle/cXGYJZtUJvczRBc9A
 
 

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Tennis Entertainment this weekend

Ethan, Gabriel, and I are playing in a regional weekend tennis tournament in McMinnville starting today.
  • Tonight (Thursday) Gabriel and I play men’s doubles at 5pm.
  • Friday night Ethan plays boys singles at 5pm and I play men’s singles at 6:15pm.
  • Saturday morning at 9:15am Ethan plays boys doubles.
It’s a single elimination tournament so if we win we keep going!
 
If you’d like to watch, the David Dunlap Tennis Complex is behind the McMinnville Civic Center, next to the Gilley Pool.
 
This photo is from 2014, when Ethan was helping me organize a tennis play day for homeschool students.

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Family Forte: Focus on People not the Prestige

by: Topher Wiles

It’s really easy to get caught focusing on the gold, silver, and bronze medals decorating the elite at the Olympic games.  Take a good look at the medals coming out of Tokyo this year.  They are a marvel of intricate metal machine work with ribbons of chemically recycled polyester fibres and hardwood cases.  Obviously a lot of thought and care has gone into the metal tradition that was started in 1896 at the Athens games.  (Click this for more info and a 1 minute Youtube video.)

While the detail, materials, and thought behind the metals has changed much over the years, some traditions have changed little.  Take into account the symbol on the front of the medal, the Greek goddess, Nike, who was the symbol of victory and often prayed to in battles of war and sports alike.  Nike is not known for mercy and cooperation in Greek mythology, but was a sentinel of Zeus’ throne.  Homer even calls her the daughter of Ares, who is the God of war.  Here is a snippet from a prayer to Nike in from www.goddessnike.com 

“Charge our chariots strong & sturdy.

Vanquish without any mercy

Enemies of our valiant army

And give to us a divine glory

Furnished with medallions & jewelry

Everything that is worldly

Is only ours by your decree

We worship thee on bended knee.”

The Goddess Nike is an ancient tradition of war & games victory which lacks mercy & compassion. It’s an interesting modern choice for the medals at the largest worldwide competition existing today because so few believe in the ancient Greek pantheon.  “Hellenism” may have as many as 2,000 legitimate adherents today according to archeology.com, and Nike isn’t even one of the twelve main gods/goddesses worshipped in Greek culture.  (http://archive.archaeology.org/0501/abstracts/letter.html)

Why has the world kept this tradition rather than honoring a diety that much of the world follows today?  Why not make the medal symbol one of the Jesus, since approximately 32% (2.4 billion) of the world claims Christianity as it’s religion?   He also symbolizes victory and peace at the same time.  I surmise choosing to honor Christ on the Olympic medal could usher in boycotts from the world’s 1.8 billion Muslims, or 1.1 billion Hindi’s, or 1.2 billion unaffiliated. The Olympic committee would likely be unwilling to alienate so many using an Olympic symbol from a modern religion, even if it did promote more better the Olympic mission (to build a peaceful and better world) than NIKE. (https://olympics.com/ioc/beyond-the-games)  

Perhaps we should focus more of our time and attention on the people on whom the medals hang rather than the image on the prestigious medals themselves. I’m so grateful for Olympic medal winners such as Caeleb Dressel (attends Campus Church of Christ, Gainesville, FL) who chose not to honor and thank goddess Nike for his wins and abilities, but chose to honor God for the opportunity to represent Him to the world.  Consider how much more merciful our God is than that of Nike, as evidenced in this prayer, recited by 2016 Rio Olympian Sarah Scherer whenever she gets nervous.

 
“Our Father in heaven,

hallowed be your name.

Your kingdom come,

your will be done,

on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread,

and forgive us our debts,

as we also have forgiven our debtors.

And lead us not into temptation,

but deliver us from evil.” – Matthew 6:9-13 ESV

(https://www.baptistpress.com/resource-library/news/olympics-thy-will-be-done-is-shooters-prayer/)

The symbol on the prestigious medals may not be anything we want to model our lives after, but some of the people are worthwhile examples of faithful and compassionate victors on the world’s greatest sporting stage.  May we give the God of victory and compassion all the honor & praise for the triumphs of the athletes and for our triumphs as well.  

To follow more believers in Tokyo, consider reading in The Gospel Coalition’s about Sydney McLaughlin, Kyle Snyder, Helen Maroulis, Micah Christenson, Michael Andrew, and Melissa Gonzalez. https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/christian-athletes-tokyo-olympics/
 
 

The word “forte” comes from the latin word “fortis” meaning strength.  Our weekly Family Forte article in The Expositor is the effort of family at Central Church of Christ to give your family the love, care, and attention it needs to become a stronger version of itself.  If we can help you in any way, please contact us at Central Church of Christ through email, topherwiles@spartacoc.com, or through our website, www.christiscentral.org.


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Sermon Notes: 8/1 – Homes N Hospitality

Scripture Reading: Hebrews 13:1-5

1 Let brotherly love continue. 

2 Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. 

3 Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body. 

4 Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous. 

5 Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” 
 
GALILEO:  In February-March 1616, the Catholic Church issued a prohibition against the Copernican theory of the earth’s motion. This led later (1633) to the Inquisition trial and condemnation of Galileo Galilei (1564-1642) as a suspected heretic, which generated a controversy that continues to our day. Do these Church actions prove the incompatibility between science and religion? What lessons can be learned from the thought and actions of Galileo, who became the “Father of Modern Science”?

From <https://origins.osu.edu/milestones/february-2016-400-years-ago-catholic-church-prohibited-copernicanism>

WELCOME: To Central Church of Christ, not a place, but a people called out to Show God’s Love, Tell God’s Story, Be God’s Family. Today we begin a new sermon series called, Take Me Back.  It’s inspired by a desire from the elders to reexamine early Christianity, what the disciples after Jesus did, how they gathered, worshipped, and encouraged each other. It’s a desire to Take Us Back to Church.

Take me back

To the place that feels like home

To the people I can depend on

To the faith that’s in my bones

Take me back

To a preacher and a verse

Where they’ve seen me at my worst

To the love I had at first

Oh, I want to go to church

      • The question is, WHAT CHURCH do we go back to? 1990’s, 1950’s, late 1920’s, 1800’s, 1600’s KJV, 1500’s Martin Luther, 313AD (Constantine made state religion of Roman Empire), Church of the 2nd Century under writers (PolyCarp, Clement, Hermas, Ignatius).
    •  

The word “church” in the New Testament is always translated from the Greek word ekklesia 1577 “an assembly, a (religious) congregation” Abbott-Smith Lexicon.

From the Online Bible, ekklesia 1577:

1) a gathering of citizens called out from their homes into some public place, an assembly 1a) an assembly of the people convened at the public place of the council for the purpose of deliberating 1b) the assembly of the Israelites 1c) any gathering or throng of men assembled by chance, tumultuously 1d) in a Christian sense 1d1) an assembly of Christians gathered for worship in a religious meeting 1d2) a company of Christians, or of those who, hoping for eternal salvation through Jesus Christ, observe their own religious rites, hold their own religious meetings, and manage their own affairs, according to regulations prescribed for the body for order’s sake 1d3) those who anywhere, in a city, village, constitute such a company and are united into one body 1d4) the whole body of Christians scattered throughout the earth 1d5) the assembly of faithful Christians already dead and received into heaven.

 

 “Not until the first half of the third century did the Christians build houses of worship.”3

Richard Krautheimer writing in “Early Christian and Byzantine Architecture” states:

Until A.D. 200, then, a Christian architecture did not and could not exist. Only the state religion erected temples in the tradition of the Greek and Roman architecture. The saviour religions [for example, Mithras or Isis], depending on the specific form of their ritual and the finances of their congregations, built oratories above or below ground, from the simplest to the most lavish but always on a small scale. Christians congregations prior to 200 were limited to the realm of domestic architecture, and further, to inconspicuous dwellings of the lower classes.4

Acts 2:42-47 – And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. 43 And awe[a] came upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. 44 And all who believed were together and had all things in common. 45 And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. 46 And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, 47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved.

From <https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts%202%3A42-47&version=ESV>

 

      • &&&The Assembly In The Ephesian House Of Aquila And Priscilla

“The churches of Asia greet you. Aquila and Prisca [Priscilla] greet you heartily in the Lord, with the church that is in their house” (1 Corinthians 16:19). 

      • The Assembly In The Roman House Of Priscilla And Aquila

“Greet Prisca [Priscilla] and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus,… also { greet} the church that is in their house. Greet Epaenetus, my beloved, who is the first convert to Christ from Asia” (Romans 16:3-5). 

      • The Assembly In The House Of Philemon

“Paul, a prisoner of Christ Jesus, and Timothy our brother, to Philemon our beloved { brother} and fellow worker, and to Apphia our sister, and to Archippus our fellow soldier, and to the church in your house:” (Philemon 1-2)

      • &&&The Assembly In The House Of Nympha

Greet the brethren who are in Laodicea and also Nympha and the church that is in her house” (Colossians 4:15).

      • HOSPITALITY:

1 Peter 4:9 

Show hospitality to one another without grumbling.

Romans 12:13 

Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality.

Titus 1:8 

But hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined.

1 Timothy 3:2 

Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach,

1 Timothy 5:10 

And having a reputation for good works: if she has brought up children, has shown hospitality, has washed the feet of the saints, has cared for the afflicted, and has devoted herself to every good work.

Hebrews 13:2 

Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares.

From <https://www.openbible.info/topics/hospitality>

 

Luke 14:12-14 

He said also to the man who had invited him, “When you give a dinner or a banquet, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, lest they also invite you in return and you be repaid. But when you give a feast, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, the blind, and you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you. For you will be repaid at the resurrection of the just.”

 

Hebrews 13:1-6 (Church in HOMES)

Do not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching. – Hebrews 10:25

From <https://biblehub.com/hebrews/10-25.htm>

 

1 Let brotherly love continue. 

2 Do not neglect to show hospitality to strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. 

3 Remember those who are in prison, as though in prison with them, and those who are mistreated, since you also are in the body. 

4 Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous. 

&&&5 Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” 

From <https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Hebrews%2013&version=ESV>

 


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Mealtrain for Gail & Lee Webb

Good afternoon church, 
I love the opportunity to send out Mealtrain requests, because you all rally around each other so well as family. Gail has an upcoming surgery and we would like to help provide a few days of meals. Please view the meal train details here: 
https://www.mealtrain.com/trains/305r6l

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Sermon Notes: 7/25 Take Me Back

      • Scripture Reading: 1 Corinthians 14:26-33 – What then, brothers? When you come together, each one has a hymn, a lesson, a revelation, a tongue, or an interpretation. Let all things be done for building up. 27 If any speak in a tongue, let there be only two or at most three, and each in turn, and let someone interpret. 28 But if there is no one to interpret, let each of them keep silent in church and speak to himself and to God. 29 Let two or three prophets speak, and let the others weigh what is said. 30 If a revelation is made to another sitting there, let the first be silent. 31 For you can all prophesy one by one, so that all may learn and all be encouraged, 32 and the spirits of prophets are subject to prophets. 33 For God is not a God of confusion but of peace. From <https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=1+cor+14&version=ESV>

 

TAKE ME BACK LYRICS & video – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3eTOcrWu8mQ

Take me back

To the place that feels like home

To the people I can depend on

To the faith that’s in my bones

Take me back

To a preacher and a verse

Where they’ve seen me at my worst

To the love I had at first

Oh, I want to go to church

 

      • WELCOME: To Central Church of Christ, not a place, but a people called out to Show God’s Love, Tell God’s Story, Be God’s Family. Today we begin a new sermon series called, Take Me Back.  It’s inspired by a desire from the elders to reexamine early Christianity, what the disciples after Jesus did, how they gathered, worshipped, and encouraged each other. It’s a desire to Take Us Back to Church
    •  

Read from Alexander Campbell, 1830,

 

Wow, Alexander Campbell called the guys supplying content in the MH, “distinguished men of liberal minds.” Then he wrote that this publication is to give the whole family religious news and such a variety of content that it is to “interest the young and inquisitive.”  pg 2

Remember page 3, the analogy of the age of Sunlight, which at times is still obscured by clouds and fogs.  Remember my purpose to help people see the Sunlight. 

Pg 4 – “The took the points off the arrows of truth, and blunted the sword of the Spirit, so that the enemies of the truth could not be conquered.”

Pg 5 – “We expect no new Sun, no new revelation of the Spirit, no other than the same gospel and the same religioun, only that it shall be disinterred from the rubbish of the dark ages, and made to assume its former simplicity, sublimity, and majesty.”

Pg 5 – “Light is certainly increasing – charity enlarging the circle of its activities – the mountains of discord diminishing, and the deep valleys which separated Christians, are filling up.  But much is to be done before all flesh shall enjoy the salvation of God.  If all who love the Lord and the salvation of men, would unite their energies and bury the tomahawk of party conflicts, no seer could predict how rapid would be the march and how extensive the triumphs of the gospel.”

 

1 Corinthians 14:12 – “So with yourselves, since you are eager for manifestations of the Spirit, strive to excel in building up the church.”

What then, brothers? When you come together, each one has a hymn, a lesson, a revelation, a tongue, or an interpretation. Let all things be done for building up. 14:26

  26b: “Let all things be done for building up.”

  • 1 Thessalonians 5:11: “Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.”
  • Romans 15:2-3: “Let each of us please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. For Christ did not please himself.”
  • Matthew 20:28: “Even as the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” Jesus did not seek what was beneficial to himself, but what was beneficial to others.

When you come together, each one has a hymn, a lesson, a revelation, a tongue, or an interpretation. Let all things be done for building up. 14:26

27a: “If any speak in a tongue, let there be only two or at most three.”

verse 27c: “. . . and let someone interpret.”

28: “But if there is no one to interpret, let each of them keep silent in church and speak to himself and to God.” 

29a: “Let two or three prophets speak.”

29b: “. . . and let the others weigh what is said.”

30: “If a revelation is made to another sitting there, let the first be silent.”

31: “For you can all prophesy one by one, so that all may learn and all be encouraged.”

Gordon D. Fee says of this passage: “The character of one’s deity is reflected in the character of one’s worship.” 

https://www.idisciple.org/post/the-god-we-worship

 

 

TAKE ME BACK – Lyrics

Oh, more than an obligation

It’s our foundation

The family of God

I know it’s hard

But we need each other

We’re sisters and brothers

Oh, take me back

To the place that feels like home

To the people I can depend on

To the faith that’s in my bones

Take me back

To a preacher and a verse

Where they’ve seen me at my worst

To the love I had at first

Oh, I want to go to church


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Bible Class & VBS

Central News: Yes, we are continuing the Annex Bible Class (1 John 1) and the Young Adult Bible Class (1 Timothy) tonight at 6:30pm during VBS. The kids will be heading out of the annex at about 6:15pm to go to the auditorium. Adults come, discuss God’s Word in class, and encourage some kids enjoying VBS tonight!

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VBS Group Schedule Sunday Night

Class 6:20-6:35 6:40-7:00 7:05-7:25 7:30-7:50 7:50-8:00
Pre-K Sing/Video Story Puppets/Games Crafts Wrap-Up
Primary Sing/Video Crafts Story Puppets/Games Wrap-Up
Junior Sing/Video Games Crafts Story Wrap-Up
Teen Sing/Video Class Project/Activity Wrap-Up
 

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Sermon Notes: 7/18 – Servant Leadership

Scripture Reading: John 13:12-15
When he had washed their feet and put on his outer garments and resumed his place, he said to them, “Do you understand what I have done to you? 13 You call me Teacher and Lord, and you are right, for so I am. 14 If I then, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15 For I have given you an example, that you also should do just as I have done to you.
 
The Chosen – Season 2 – Episode 8 – Judas is revealed

Psalm 41:9- Even my close friend in whom I trusted, who ate my bread, has lifted his heel against me.

Zechariah 11:12-13- Then I said to them, “If it seems good to you, give me my wages; but if not, keep them.” And they weighed out as my wages thirty pieces of silver. Then the Lord said to me, “Throw it to the potter”—the lordly price at which I was priced by them. So I took the thirty pieces of silver and threw them into the house of the Lord, to the potter.

Zechariah 13:7b Strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered.

  • “Jesus, if it’s you, tell me to walk to you on the water!” Of course, Jesus told him to come and he actually started out walking on top of the water. (Matthew 14:28-29)
  • “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” (Matthew 16)
“Far be it from you, Lord! We won’t let you die!” (Matthew 16:22-23) 
  • “It is good for us to be here. Let us build three tabernacles right here on the mountain so you can all stay here and we can worship you right here on the mountain.” Of course, we heard God respond and tell us to listen to His Son and Jesus told us to not tell anyone about this yet. (Matthew 17:4)
  • How many times must I forgive my brother, seven?” Can you believe his nerve? I’m the one who introduced him to Jesus. I mean, sure, we’d been arguing that day, but I never thought he’d actually ask Jesus when he could stop forgiving his brother. That’s me! I was right there and he asks Jesus how many times he has to forgive me like I’m a knucklehead. Wow! (Matthew 18:21)
  • “I will never fall away! I’d rather die than deny you, Jesus!” We all jumped in with him, but sure enough, by the end of the night, we’d all abandoned Jesus. (Matthew 26:30-35)
10 Jesus said to him, “The one who has bathed does not need to wash, except for his feet, but is completely clean.- John 13:10 Philippians 2:5-8- Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped, but made Himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death- even death on a cross.
 
Francis of Assisi is attributed to have said, “Preach the gospel daily, when necessary, use words.”

https://www.huffpost.com/entry/preach-the-gospel-at-all-times-st-francis_b_1627781

 


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Ministry Meeting Tomorrow

Central News: Reminder that tomorrow at noon is a lunch/meeting for ALL elders, elders, & ministry leaders in annex. Subway, chips, drinks, desserts provided. Also, VBS starts tomorrow night. Let’s get involved to better Show God’s Love, Tell God’s Story, and Be God’s Family.

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Bloom Womens Breakfast

Central News: Reminder that ladies are invited to a time of prayer and fellowship tomorrow (Saturday) morning at 8am at the Coffee Collective. Come enjoy!
 

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1 John Annex Bible Class – Video

We had a great time introducing 1 John tonight in the Annex Bible study class.  Here’s the instructional video that I mentioned tonight that goes right along with that study. Enjoy! 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l3QkE6nKylM


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Bible Classes Tonight

We are so excited to begin meeting in the building tonight on Wednesday night!  Join us at 6:30pm in the Annex building or on livestream.   We will NOT have the ZOOM meeting on Wednesday nights at this time.  
 
Our Class Offerings on Wednesday Night Are: 
  • Nursery: Located in the Main Building Downstairs
  • K-5th: Located in the Main Building Downstairs
  • 6th-12th Grades: Located in the Annex Building Downstairs
  • Young Adult: Located in the Library/Lounge (Topic is 1 Timothy)
  • Adult: Annex Building Upstairs (Topic is 1 John)
 
You can still catch our livestream on the following locations:
 
For Roku, Apple TV, & Amazon Fire TV:
Install Boxcast Channel, search Central Church of Christ – Sparta, TN

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Marriage Seminar in Murfreesboro

We’re looking forward to a fun field trip to Trey and Lea’s free marriage seminar at Kingwood Church of Christ in Murfreesboro  on Friday and Saturday, August 20-21.  Topher met Trey years ago at Oklahoma Christian University and has been impressed with the marriage material they offer to couples. Register for this event. Let Topher know if you’re interested in an overnight stay in Murfreesboro. 
 
Friday – 7pm – 17 Ways to Bless your Marriage – Part 1
Friday – 8pm – 17 Ways to Bless your Marriage – Part 2
 
Saturday – 9am – Marriage Deposits > Marriage Withdrawals
Saturday – 10am – Six Sneaky Marriage Killers
Saturday – 11am – How to Make Your Love Life Sizzle
 
Find out more about Trey & Lea: https://strongermarriageworkshops.com/
Find out more about Kingwood Church of Christ in Murfreesboro here: https://www.kingwoodcoc.org/
 

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Kayaking Success

Where were the storm clouds?! We simply have to thank God for holding off the rain and thunderstorms for a couple hours so our young adult group could enjoy kayaking together.
 
Our Central Young Adult group enjoyed playing with the otters, playing chase with a family of ducks, and bumping along down the Caney Fork River in Big Bottom this Sunday afternoon during perfect weather. God’s beauty was on wondrous display!
 
Our next adventure should see us outdoor rock climbing together in August at Black Mountain. See Topher for details. 
 
 
 

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YA Bible – Life Together

The Young Adult Class met at 9am on Sunday, July 11th to begin studying the writings of another young adult, Dietrich Bonhoeffer. This young man was executed by Nazi’s in 1945 at 39 years old. This short work of his is called, “Life Together.” 
To download a .pdf version of the entire book, click here: Life Together – Bonhoeffer
 
To hear Chapter 1 “Community” click here and press play: Sermon Audio « (christiscentral.org)

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Leadership Loveable Losers

Scripture: Titus 3:1-8

      • WELCOME:   To Central Church of Christ, not a place, but a people called to show God’s love, tell God’s story, and be God’s family. As we continue in the process of affirming elders and deacons on July 18th, it’s wise for us to look at more than just a list of qualities listed, but at the context of the entire Bible.

Titus 1: Qualities of Elders

Titus 2: Qualities of older men, older women, younger women, younger men, slaves. Vs11

Titus 3: Remind them, Who The elders, older men, older women, younger women, younger men, slaves…

      • Titus 3:3-7 tells us the church has always been filled with losers.

“At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another. But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.”

 

Titus 3 declared that God built His church completely from a roster of losers.

ILLUS: Mars Hill Church – Marc Driscoll

https://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/podcasts/rise-and-fall-of-mars-hill/who-killed-mars-hill-church-mark-driscoll-rise-fall.html

In 18 years –

Mars Hill Church was a Christian megachurch, founded by Mark Driscoll, Lief Moi, and Mike Gunn. It was a multi-site church based in Seattle, Washington and grew from a home Bible study to 15 locations in 4 U.S. states.[1] Services were offered at its 15 locations; the church also podcast content of weekend services, and of conferences, on the Internet[2] with more than 260,000 sermon views online every week.[3] In 2013, Mars Hill had a membership of 6,489 and average weekly attendance of 12,329.[4] 

From <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mars_Hill_Church>

Some of the charges are as follows:

      • October 2011—Mark said in a meeting that he did not want a certain staff elder (who was not slim) to take on a certain prominent leadership role because “his fat ass is not the image we want for our church.”
      • May 8, 2012—In a meeting of the Full Council convened to vote on the slate of nominees for the new board of advisors and accountability, Mark was explaining to the elders that under the newly revised bylaws, the Full Council would have the right to review any changes by the board. One elder corrected Mark with his own understanding that the new bylaws, in fact, allow the board to make decisions without running it by the Full Council. Mark’s response to that elder was bullying, with some elders present recalling language to the effect of: “I don’t give a shit what you think. I’m trying to be nice to you guys by asking your opinion. In reality, we don’t need your vote to make this decision. This is what we’re doing.”
      • March 2013—Violence: Threatened to tear down a former elder’s church plant, saying “I’ll tear his church down brick by brick.”

From <https://www.wthrockmorton.com/2014/08/21/former-mars-hill-church-pastors-bring-formal-charges-against-mark-driscoll/>

“… it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” Matthew 19:24

 

 

“Peter replied, ‘REPENT and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.’” Acts 2:38

 

 “… (God) commands ALL people EVERYWHERE to repent. Acts 17:30

“At one time we too were foolish, disobedient, deceived and enslaved by all kinds of passions and pleasures. We lived in malice and envy, being hated and hating one another.” Titus 3:3

Back in 2006 the Washington Post conducted a poll,

  • 79% of Americans believed they were “above average” in appearance,
  • 86% feel they were above average in intelligence,
  • and 94% believed they were above average in honesty.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6029792/#:~:text=We%20sought%20robust%2C%20contemporary%20evidence,U.S.%20census%20data%2C%20we%20found

https://digest.bps.org.uk/2018/07/24/first-survey-of-its-kind-for-50-years-finds-most-americans-still-think-they-have-above-average-intelligence/

“Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector.

   The Pharisee stood up and prayed about himself: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other men…”

Luke 18:9-14

 

“… Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners— of whom I am the worst. But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his unlimited patience…” I Timothy 1:15-16

 

      • &&&ILLUS:  Years ago a preacher named Carl Ketcherside (non-instrumental Church of Christ) moved to St. Louis and began working with a group of teenagers he described as “a crew of ripped off long haired kids.” Most of them had a history of drug addiction.

   But he loved them and he listened to them, and one by one baptized them into Christ.

   An affluent member of the church apparently wasn’t pleased with having these young folks come to their church building and he asked Ketcherside, “How are you making out those long haired, sad looking specimens you have been meeting with?”

   And Ketcherside replied, “Those aren’t specimens, they are children of God. You are talking about my brethren in the Lord.”

  The other man smirked and said, “They look to me like something the cat dragged in.”

  And Ketcherside replied, “No. They look like someone the shepherd brought home.”

http://donaldcrane.blogspot.com/2014/07/hippies-someone-shepherd-brought-home.html

 

  “He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.”   Titus 3:5b-7

 

Acts 2:38  “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.”

John 3:5

  Jesus told Nicodemus, “ “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit.”

To be saved we need to be born of the water AND the Spirit.

      • *NICODEMUS VIDEO

 

 

INVITATION – Loveable Losers – Bring Christ Your Broken Life


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Prayer Request: Betty Simmons Family


Central Prayer Request: Please pray for Zelma Brandenburg and the family of her sister, Betty Simmons. Betty passed away on Wednesday morning. Services will be at Hunter’s Funeral Home on Saturday, July 10th, at 11am.
https://www.hunterfuneralhome.net/obituary/betty-jean-simmons

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YA Kayaking Trip

Central Young Adult News – 2 Items: Kayaking & Sunday Bible Study

  • Please confirm (Message Topher) if you are coming Kayaking on Sunday, 11th after church services.  We’ll eat at Sonic after church, then put kayaks in at Mitchell Ford in Big Bottom 20 minutes south of Sparta by 1pm. Do you need Topher to get a kayak/paddle/life jacket for you?  This beginner level 2.25 mile kayak trip will take us 1.5 to 2 hours depending on how much we play/wade/swim.
  • You’re invited back to Young Adult Bible Class this Sunday morning at 9am. We’ll meet in the library/lounge to begin looking at short thoughts on community from a Christ follower who was executed by Hitler’s Nazis as a young adult: Dietrich Bonhoeffer. We will have coffee and light snacks.
  • Let Topher know if you need anything for Kayaking!

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Marriage Assessment for the Community

Family Forte: Invincible Love & Saving Marriage

by: Topher Wiles

How many of you were like us?  I thought that we would tie the proverbial knot, carry Ashley over the threshold, and as the fair tales say, “live happily ever after?” We dated for two years, were engaged for one, and had a beautiful wedding.  Now after 17 years of marital ups and downs, we discovered that a good marriage is so much more than a loving feeling, a lavish ceremony, and having a lot in common. I wish we had gone through some sort of organized premarital counseling. 

If we’re being truthful with ourselves, that whole “till death do us part” in the marriage vows is increasingly ironic.  According to Les & Leslie Parrot (authors of “Saving Your Marriage Before It Starts”) things are changing. In the 1930s, one out of seven marriages ended in divorce. In the 1960s, it was one out of four. On survivedivorce.com, that figure is now around 40 percent of marriages today ending in divorce. That tells us that so many couples toss the bouquet, return the tuxedos, and assume they’re heading for marital bliss while their ship is really sailing toward wedded disaster.  

We believe God has more in store for your family forte than what our current culture provides.

Here at Central Church of Christ, we believe God has set the standard on what a loving relationship is and we are preparing ourselves to help members in the community get ready for the best marital relationship possible. That’s why I and others at our church have gotten certified to offer pre-marital counseling through the SYMBIS (Saving Your Marriage Before It Starts) system to our community. This 30 minute pre-marital assessment tool and five accompanying counseling sessions are designed to give couples the following: healthy expectations of marriage, a realistic concept of love, a positive attitude and outlook toward married life, a better way to communicate feelings, an understanding of gender differences, the ability to make decisions and settle arguments, a common spiritual foundation, and a deep and abiding commitment to the bonds of marriage together.  This is the broader concept of what invincible love looks like day-in and day-out in a marriage.

Tennessee understands the value of pre-marital counseling as our state offers a $60 discount (from $97.50 to $37.50 in White County) on marriage licenses to couples who obtain pre-marital counseling within a year before the marriage.  For couples choosing pre-marital counseling with us here at Central, we ask that the couple cover the $35 assessment fee, and we will provide 5 free counseling sessions directed by the findings of the assessment. All told, you’ll come out of this saving $25 in Tennessee and saving your marriage before it starts!

 

It doesn’t matter if you go to church or not, you are welcome to enjoy premarital counseling with us at Central Church of Christ as we strive to strengthen families in our community through the SYMBIS assessment and premarital counseling. If you’d like to learn more about marriage and more, just contact me, Topher, at topherwiles@spartacoc.com or call our office at 931-836-2874.  

Marriage doesn’t have to be a gamble. Your lifelong partner is better than a roll of the dice. Your marriage can be better prepared to weather the storms that will come. You can enjoy “invincible love.” We’re here to help.

Hang my locket around your neck, wear my ring on your finger. Love is invincible facing danger and death. Passion laughs at the terrors of hell. The fire of love stops at nothing— it sweeps everything before it. Flood waters can’t drown love, torrents of rain can’t put it out. – Song of Songs 8:6-7


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Fun in the Son

Many thanks to Cathy Garvin for snapping a few photos yesterday. I appreciate everyone coming out to smile, play, and be thankful for freedom in Christ. Roger Mason was excellent on the grill and the spread of food by all of you was excellent. If anyone else took fun photos, please share!

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Pool Devotional Celebrate Freedom

John Chapter 5:1-17

After this there was a feast of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.

Now there is in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate a pool, in Aramaica] called Bethesda,b] which has five roofed colonnades. In these lay a multitude of invalids—blind, lame, and paralyzed.c] One man was there who had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had already been there a long time, he said to him, “Do you want to be healed?” The sick man answered him, “Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up, and while I am going another steps down before me.” Jesus said to him, “Get up, take up your bed, and walk.” And at once the man was healed, and he took up his bed and walked.

Now that day was the Sabbath. 10 So the Jewsd] said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath, and it is not lawful for you to take up your bed.” 11 But he answered them, “The man who healed me, that man said to me, ‘Take up your bed, and walk.’ 12 They asked him, “Who is the man who said to you, ‘Take up your bed and walk’?” 13 Now the man who had been healed did not know who it was, for Jesus had withdrawn, as there was a crowd in the place. 14 Afterward Jesus found him in the temple and said to him, “See, you are well! Sin no more, that nothing worse may happen to you.” 15 The man went away and told the Jews that it was Jesus who had healed him. 16 And this was why the Jews were persecuting Jesus, because he was doing these things on the Sabbath. 17 But Jesus answered them, “My Father is working until now, and I am working.”
 
John 8:31-38

The Truth Will Set You Free

31 So Jesus said to the Jews who had believed him, “If you abide in my word, you are truly my disciples, 32 and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” 33 They answered him, “We are offspring of Abraham and have never been enslaved to anyone. How is it that you say, ‘You will become free’?”

34 Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who practices sin is a slaveb] to sin. 35 The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. 36 So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed. 37 I know that you are offspring of Abraham; yet you seek to kill me because my word finds no place in you. 38 I speak of what I have seen with my Father, and you do what you have heard from your father.”


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Sermon Notes: 7/4 Freedom

  • Scripture Reading: Deuteronomy 18:15-19: “The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your brothers—it is to him you shall listen— 16 just as you desired of the Lord your God at Horeb on the day of the assembly, when you said, ‘Let me not hear again the voice of the Lord my God or see this great fire any more, lest I die.’ 17 And the Lord said to me, ‘They are right in what they have spoken. 18 I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their brothers. And I will put my words in his mouth, and he shall speak to them all that I command him. 19 And whoever will not listen to my words that he shall speak in my name, I myself will require it of him.
    •  
  • Welcome to Central Church of Christ.  Not a place, but a people called out to show God’s love, tell God’s story, and be God’s family. We are still talking about church Leadership since we’re right smack dab in the middle of affirming elders and deacons. Let me tell you, Good leadership brings freedom.  Freedom to grow, freedom to dream, freedom to live a life of hope rather than fear. Today, let’s talk about Freedom, and one of the symbols of freedom in the Bible.
      • God knows that a child possesses all the potential to change the world!
  • Exodus 2:3 tells us “When (his mother) could hide him no longer, she took for him a basket made of bulrushes and daubed it with bitumen and pitch. She put the child in it and placed it among the reeds by the river bank.”
  • God caused Moses to be “instructed in all the wisdom of the Egyptians”Acts 7:22
  • Ephesians 2:10 tells us that YOU “are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.”
  • I Corinthians 1:25-29 tells us that “the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men. For consider your calling, brothers: not many of you were wise according to worldly standards, not many were powerful, not many were of noblebirth.
  • But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is WEAK in the world to shame the strong; God chose what is low and despised in the world, even things that are not, to bring to nothing things that are, so that no human being might boast in the presence of God.”
  • In Deuteronomy 18:17-19 the LORD said to Moses: 
  • “I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their brothers; I will put my words in his mouth, and he will tell them everything I command him. If anyone does not listen to my words that the prophet speaks in my name, I myself will call him to account.”
  • I Corinthians 10:1-2 Paul wrote: “I do not want you to be ignorant of the fact, brothers and sisters, that our ancestors were all under the cloud and that they all passed through the sea. They were all baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea.”
  • Galatians 3:27 “For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ.”
Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus, 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. 9 Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. – Philippians 2:5-11

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Central Celebration of Freedom

Central Event: Join us this Sunday for a time of celebrating of God’s gift of freedom. We have reserved the Sparta YMCA pool on Sunday, July 4th from 1-3pm for swimming, food, and fun fellowship in the sun. We’ll light the griddle up immediately for a late lunch of burgers, dogs, & brats. We’ll provide the main course and drinks, you just bring a side or dessert, a friend, and a smile. We’ll have a devotional time of singing, message, and prayer. RSVP to Topher with your intended numbers to be sure we have enough food to go around. We love you and hope you enjoy a great weekend celebrating God’s gift of freedom.

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Central Prayer Request for the Crosslin Family

Central Prayer Request: As you may have noticed in the church email today, there are three prayer requests related to Karen Crosslin’s family. Karen’s brother, Steve Green (Mississippi), has been diagnosed with advanced stage cancer and will be undergoing treatments to slow the spread. Karen’s 91-year-old father has Alzheimer’s, heart issues, and suffered a fall. Karen’s uncle Stanley is also struggling through chemotherapy right now. Please pray for strength and peace for all three of these individuals, for Karen, for her mother, and for their entire family.
Also, I believe Tommy’s last day at work is today at Walmart. Please pray for Tommy’s transition into retirement!

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Ronald Allison sets a record

Ronald Allison set a new track record and brought home the 1st place trophy this weekend at the Farmington Dragway in North Carolina. Congratulate him on this amazing achievement at just 76 years young! 

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New Visitor – Jane Peters

Request for Cards: On Sunday our church had two new visitors, Jane and Tim Peters. Tim is Jane’s son and he is a deacon at the Bethel Church of Christ in Dunlap, TN. Tim has requested that we wrap welcoming arms around his mom who lives here in Sparta. Her husband of 60 years passed away on June 10th. Jane was a delight at church services on Sunday and when we visited at her house on Tuesday. Please show her the love of Christ as she goes through a tough transition of life.
 
Jane’s address:
Jane Peters
4680 Monterey Hwy
Sparta, TN 38583
 
Phone: 931-739-4680

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SonShine with Central Youth

Some youth from Central joined forces to spread some extra “SonShine” today by making goody bags, delivering, and singing at homes. We also enjoyed a few other shenanigans around town as evidenced by the smiles and sweat throughout the photos. Special thanks to Ashley Wiles for organizing!
“Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.” – 1 Timothy 4:12

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News from El Salvador

Here’s a message I received from Jimmy Wallace in El Salvador this weekend: 
“The trip is going well. We were encouraged today we went to a church up close to the Honduran border called Lago de Aguilar. It is up on the mountain very near a defunct volcano that has a lagoon in it. We met with three churches this morning and had VBS and a Devo and food distribution. We went up to the church on top of the mountain where project Nehemiah had built a building and a Sunday school building for the children last year. We met the preacher who is very ill with heart problems and had prayer with him. These people walk at least a mile if not more twice a week for church and they have a membership of about 40 not counting the children. We were very encouraged to see what had gone on there and that there are dedicated Christians who are enduring great hardships. We have had good programs in Candelaria, El tule, apopa, and San Juan opico. We will be going to Lourdes and San Bartolo tomorrow. We will distribute 800 children’s bags, 175 bags for babies and 1,000 bags of food. I am greatly impressed by the way the church is growing in these small towns way out in the country. The gospel is being spread. Thanks for keeping up with us. Glenda is having a great time and having great new experiences. Most of the pictures we have are on Pat’s phone and I will send you a couple of them via Gmail. Thanks a lot you guys take care. Give our love to all.”


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Sermon Notes: 6/27 Leadership

Scripture Reading: Mark 10:42-45

  • WELCOME: To Central Church of Christ, not a place, but a people called to show God’s love, tell God’s story, and be God’s family. As we continue in the process of affirming elders and deacons on July 18th, it’s wise for us to consider the nature of servant leadership in Christ’s church.  Please turn to 1 Peter 5 in your Bibles or in the sermon notes.
  • Pilot’s Speeches – http://english4aviation.pbworks.com/w/page/33990005/Speech%20suggestions

“To the elders (presbuteros) among you, I appeal as a fellow elder (presbuteros), a witness of Christ’s sufferings and one who also will share in the glory to be revealed: Be shepherds (poimainō) of God’s flock that is under your care, serving as overseers (episkopeō) — not because you must, but because you are willing….” (1 Peter 5:1-2)

“From Miletus, Paul sent to Ephesus for the elders (presbuteros) of the church…. Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers (episkopos). Be shepherds (poimainō) of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood.” (Acts 20:17, 28)

Pilot and Seeing Eye Dog

https://laferianews.net/?p=6221

 

Let them alone; they are blind guides. And if the blind lead the blind, both will fall into a pit.” – Matthew 15:14

“Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for “God resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble.” Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time.” I Peter 5:5-6 NKJV

 
I Peter 5:8 says: “Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.”

 

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. Be self-controlled and alert. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.

Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that your brothers throughout the world are undergoing the same kind of sufferings. And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.” I Peter 5:7-10

 
 
 

https://www.aopa.org/news-and-media/all-news/2009/april/14/unintentional-king-air-pilot-an-interview-with-doug-white

 

Our Air Traffic Controller has left instructions to get us flying toward home.

  1. Hear (Rom. 10:14-17)
  2. Believe(Mark 16:16)
  3. Repent (Acts 2:38)
  4. Confess(Matt. 10:32-33)
  5. Be Baptized(Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; I Peter 3:21)

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Bulletin 6/27/21

For the 6/27/21 Sunday Bulletin in .pdf format, click here: 
June 27th, 2021 bulletin
On Thursday, June 24th David Smith dropped to one knee, presented a ring, and asked that blessed question to Lauren Turner, “Will you marry me?” As church family, let’s rally around this beautiful couple to as they prepare for marriage. More details to come soon!
 
WORSHIP NEWS
  • On Sunday June 27th – Lifecare worship services at 8am and our regular worship at 10am. Members can still receive the
    parking lot radio station (98,3), communion, & bulletin. 
  • Bible Classes – Will begin on Sunday 9am on July 11th and
    Wednesday 6:30pm on July 14th – Nathan & Topher are organizing.
  • July 5th-Office closed
  • July 11th – Young Adult lunch & kayaking trip at Big Bottom @ Noon.
  • July 18th – Cameron Farris & Katie Roberts will be married in Jamaica!
  • July 18th – Elders, Deacons, Ministry Leader Luncheon after Church
  • July 23rd – 8am – Men’s Prayer Breakfast – The Landing Rock Island
  • July 24th-Wedding of Andrew Webb & Emily Johnson at 6:00 pm. at
    the Brady MT. Wedding & Event Venue in Crab Orchard, Tn.
  • August 20-21st – Field trip to Murf. for Trey & Lea’s Marriage workshop.
Youth News
  • June 20- Bible Bowl Practice at 4:30. Link to practice:
    https://meet.google.com/pba-rhvp-avr Please read Luke 9-11 to prepare! Our next
    practice will be over studying chapters 11-13. . We need a scorekeeper!
  • June 29th-Service Project for ages K-12. Meet at the Wiles home(703 Crosslin
    St.) at 9 am to assemble sunshine baskets. We will assemble, deliver and then
    return to the Wiles home for lunch. Students may be picked up there at 1 pm.
    Contact Ashley Wiles if you have any questions.
  • July 11-Summer FX Night at 6:00 pm in the annex. The theme is: Over and
    Over ( Training to Win the Prize) We will have singing, games, a devo and a great
    time enjoying fellowship together. Also, this is a great night to invite a friend and
    their family!
  • VBS( uly 18-21) is coming & we need your help! Our theme this year is God of
    Wonders! If you are interested in helping, please join Patrick at the front of the
    auditorium for a short meeting after the morning service.

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Mens Prayer Breakfast Tomorrow Morning

Reminder: Our men’s prayer breakfast begins anew tomorrow morning at Robert’s Family Diner with fresh faces and fresh food!  This is just a simple time for fellas to get together for some food and fellowship sharing prayer requests.  We hope to see you there!

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Father’s Day Trust: Sermon Notes

Scripture Reading: Jeremiah 17:4-8

Check out the Goats & Birds at farm in Smithville. Harmony Lane

https://harmonylanefarms.com/

Happy Father’s Day and WELCOME:  to Central Church of Christ, a people called out by God to Show His Love, Tell His Story, and Be His Family. As a church family, we are in the process of selecting new Elder’s, Deacons, Ministers and reaffirming existing ones. This message on Father’s day is perfect for what we are hearing right now. Dad’s we are notorious for carrying around a lot of tools.  Nothing is a better tool to have in your dad toolbox than trust.

I Kings 16:29-33 

“In the thirty-eighth year of Asa king of Judah, Ahab son of Omri became king of Israel, and he reigned in Samaria over Israel twenty-two years.

Ahab son of Omri did more evil in the eyes of the LORD than any of those before him. He not only considered it trivial to commit the sins of Jeroboam son of Nebat, but he also married Jezebel daughter of Ethbaal king of the Sidonians, and began to serve Baal and worship him.

He set up an altar for Baal in the temple of Baal that he built in Samaria.

Ahab also made an Asherah pole and did more to provoke the LORD, the God of Israel, to anger than did all the kings of Israel before him.” I Kings 16:30-33

 

1Kings 21:25 says “There was never a man like Ahab, who sold himself to do evil in the eyes of the LORD, urged on by Jezebel his wife.”

 
We’re told that he built a temple to the pagan god Baal in Samaria. And that he erected Asherah poles for the worship of that goddess (who apparently was worshipped as both Baal’s mother AND his wife).
https://www.worldhistory.org/Asherah/
 

“To whom will you compare me or count me equal? 

To whom will you liken me that we may be compared?

Some pour out gold from their bags and weigh out silver on the scales; they hire a goldsmith to make it into a god, and they bow down and worship it. They lift it to their shoulders and carry it; they set it up in its place, and there it stands. From that spot it cannot move. Though one cries out to it, it does not answer; it cannot save him from his troubles.” Isaiah 46:5-7

 

Chely Wright’s Country song title Jezebel teaches us that a Jezebel definitely isn’t a name to be respected.

https://www.lyrics.com/lyric/5093817/Chely+Wright/Jezebel

 

Namberry.com – “not exalted”

Jezebel, the wife of King Ahab in the Hebrew Book of Kings, has long had a bad girl reputation. But in the modern secular world, this is somewhat mitigated by the feminist perspective of her as a strong woman, the power behind the throne. Previously avoided as a baby name, Jezebel is now, along with the also previously avoided Delilah and Desiree, coming into use, helped by its relation to other ‘bel’ name such as Isabel and Bella

Pasted from <http://nameberry.com/babyname/Jezebel>

 

1Kings 21:25 says “There was never a man like Ahab, who sold himself to do evil in the eyes of the LORD, urged on by Jezebel his wife.” 

 

“From the Deuteronomist’s viewpoint, Jezebel embodies everything that must be eliminated from Israel so that the purity of the cult of Yahweh will not be further contaminated.”

From <https://www.biblicalarchaeology.org/daily/people-cultures-in-the-bible/people-in-the-bible/how-bad-was-jezebel/>

 

 

Now Elijah the Tishbite was a prophet from the settlers in Gilead. “I serve the Lord, the God of Israel,” Elijah said to Ahab. “As surely as the Lord lives, no rain or dew will fall during the next few years unless I command it.” – 1 Kings 17:1

“Elijah was a man just like us. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years.” James 5:17

 

“What’s the difference between a raven and a crow?” asked my son. “Ravens have seventeen wing feathers with the end feather called a pinion, in contrast to crows having only sixteen wing feathers.” I answered.

I continued, “Therefore, it’s just a matter of a pinion.”

From <https://punstoppable.com/the-raven-puns>

“The ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening, and he drank from the brook.” 1 Kings 17:6

 

Now this is odd for several reasons:

      • 1st Ravens don’t generally like being around humans… they avoid us if at all possible.
      • 2ndly Ravens were unclean birds. God’s people were not allowed to eat them, nor offer them in sacrifice.
      • 3rd The food of ravens has usually been dead for a while. They eat road kill. They were scavengers. They’re kind of like vultures. Who would want to share their food?
      • 4th Even if we wanted to share their food, Ravens would never share. They don’t even share their food with their babies.

When commenting on this passage, Clarke wrote:

“(God) could not have employed this means without working a variety of miracles at the same time, in order to accomplish one simple end; and this is never God’s method: his plan is ever to accomplish the greatest purposes by the simplest means.” Adam Clarke

https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/acc/1-kings-17.html

 

“It is often supposed that when people stop believing in God, they believe in nothing. 

Alas, it is worse than that. 

When they stop believing in God, they believe in anything.”

https://www.goodreads.com/quotes/44015-when-men-choose-not-to-believe-in-god-they-do

 

ROMANS 3:23 says: “All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God”

 

Elijah said to her, “Don’t be afraid. Go home and do as you have said. But first make a small cake of bread for me from what you have and bring it to me, and then make something for yourself and your son. For this is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: ‘The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the LORD gives rain on the land.’”

She went away and did as Elijah had told her. So there was food every day for Elijah and for the woman and her family.” 1 Kings 17:13-15

 

2 Chronicles 16:9 says “… the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him…” 

 

“Trust in yourself and you are doomed to disappointment

Trust in money and you may have it taken from you; 

But trust in God, and you are never to be confounded in time or eternity.” D.L. Moody 

https://www.azquotes.com/quote/662599 

 

“Without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists AND that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” Hebrews 11:6

 

INVITATION SONG: God is calling the Prodigal


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Wiles at Bible Camp

Church family, the Wiles are heading to Spring Mill Bible Camp in Indiana today. My contact will be sporadic throughout the week. If you have an emergency, please contact the elders or Janice in the office. I’ll be back on Sunday, June 20th. We hope you have a blessed week! http://www.springmillbiblecamp.com/
 

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Mail Call

Mail alert! Here are 3 opportunities to send encouragement through the mail.
Don’t forget to drop Mrs. Jeffy Turner a birthday card at:
Jeffy Turner,
Lifecare Assisted Living, Room 518,
508 Mose Dr,
Sparta, TN 38583.
 
Mackenzie Stockton is spending the month of June at Tennessee Governors School for the Agricultural Sciences. Drop her a card or care package at:
Mackenzie Stockton,
UT-Martin, TGSAS,
253 Brehm Hall,
Martin, TN 38238.
 
Gabriel, Ethan, Micah, and Clara Wiles are spending next week at Spring Mill Bible Camp. You can send them a card or package at:
Spring Mill Bible Camp,
*Campers Name*,
2830 St Rd 60E,
Mitchell, IN 47446. I’d recommend dropping those in the mail by Monday at the latest so they arrive in time.
 
Thanks for being God’s family!

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Sermon Notes: The Church’s Fight for Faith

We are now 64 days past resurrection Sunday in a time called Pentecost.  Welcome to Central Church of Christ, a people called out by God to Show His Love, Tell His Story, and Be His Family. By this time the early church has been established for about two weeks, Jesus would have ascended about 24 days ago and those who are faithful are now in a Fight for their Faith. 

https://bleacherreport.com/articles/2944207-mayweather-vs-paul-tale-of-tape-fight-records-and-more-for-both-boxers

>

“Unsurprisingly, boxing matches in Rome often ended in the death of the loser. http://www.historyoffighting.com/boxing-in-the-ancient-world.php)

 

Romans 12:2Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.

 

“Timothy, my son, I give you this instruction in keeping with the prophecies once made about you, so that by following them you may fight the good fight, holding on to faith and a good conscience.” I Timothy 1:18-19a

“Fight the good fight of the faith” I Timothy 6:12a

“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.” II Timothy 4:6

“Some have rejected these and so have shipwrecked their faith.” 1Timothy 1:19a

Christian Chronicle Article: March 1, 2018

https://christianchronicle.org/churchtoo-sexual-abuse-victims-fed-silence/
 

&&&“Timothy, my son, I give you this instruction in keeping with the prophecies once made about you, so that by following them you may fight the good fight, holding on to faith and a good conscience.” I Timothy 1:18-19a

“Fight the good fight of the faith” I Timothy 6:12a

“…command certain men not to teach false doctrines any longer” I Timothy 1:3

“The aim of our charge IS LOVE that issues from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith.” 1 Timothy 1:5

“Here is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance: Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners— of whom I am the worst.” 1 Timothy 1:15

“Some have rejected these and so have shipwrecked their faith. Among them are Hymenaeus and Alexander, whom I have handed over to Satan to be taught not to blaspheme.” I Timothy 1:19b-20

“I will hold the watchman accountable for their blood.” Ezekiel 33:6b

“Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently. But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted.” Galatians 6:1

1 Timothy 3:1-15

The saying is trustworthy: If anyone aspires to the office of overseer, he desires a noble task. 2 Therefore an overseer[a] must be above reproach, the husband of one wife,[b] sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. 4 He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, 5 for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God’s church? 6 He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil.

8 Deacons likewise must be dignified, not double-tongued,[c] not addicted to much wine, not greedy for dishonest gain. 9 They must hold the mystery of the faith with a clear conscience. 10 And let them also be tested first; then let them serve as deacons if they prove themselves blameless. 11 Their wives likewise[d] must be dignified, not slanderers, but sober-minded, faithful in all things. 12 Let deacons each be the husband of one wife, managing their children and their own households well. 13 For those who serve well as deacons gain a good standing for themselves and also great confidence in the faith that is in Christ Jesus.

14 I hope to come to you soon, but I am writing these things to you so that, 15 if I delay, you may know how one ought to behave in the household of God, which is the church of the living God, a pillar and buttress of the truth. 

 

 

 


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Changes in Worship Service

This morning felt a little strange parking in an actual parking spot. For 14 months I have loaded up the steel steps in the back of my truck In the early morning hours and parked my truck underneath the carport so our church could have access to the roof.

I’m looking forward to worship at 10:00 a.m. with all of you!
Reminder of a few changes today. 
  • We will have an 8am church service at Lifecare and a 10am worship service in the auditorium. 
  • Members can still pull in the parking lot at 10am, tune in on the radio at 98.3fm, and receive communion outside. 
  • Indoors, mask wearing is optional.
Our education ministry is working on our next steps for Bible Classes. Stay tuned for more info soon! 

“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” – Colossians 3:17


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Family Fishing Tomorrow

Central News: Tomorrow is our annual fishing day! Whether you like to fish or like to watch & laugh, come out with your lawn chair to the Blevins pond for fun at 8am. Drinks, chips, and snacks will be available. The pond has a slew of bass and brim that are almost always hungry. Extra fishing rods available.

Check out our 2020 fishing experience here: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10158607405147490
Enjoy reminiscing 2019 here: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10157414731057490

The best way to Tommy & Pat Blevins home is to copy these GPS Coordinates into Google Maps.
35.92443052367595, -85.6570611323441
 
From the church building to the Blevins:
18 min (13.8 miles)
via US-70 W and Indian Mound Rd
 
 
Head south on N Main St toward Bockman Way
449 ft
 
 
Turn right onto US-70 W/W Bockman Way
Continue to follow US-70 W
10.1 mi on Bockman Way toward Smithville
 
 
Turn left onto Indian Mound Rd
3.5 mi south on Indian Mound Rd.
 
 
Slight left onto S Pin Hook Rd
348 ft continue south
 
 
Turn left at Tommy and Pat’s Driveway

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