Sunday, May 31, 2020

Invitations From Jesus

Usually this time of year we have received several invitations to graduation parties. However, because of the coronavirus this year we have only received two so far.   We anticipate receiving a few more as the pandemic dissipates.  Jesus gave several personal invitations to individuals in the NT and also extended them to us today.  Will we RSVP?

1.  The invitation to come and see.

He said to them, “Come and see.” They came and saw where He was staying, and remained with Him that day (now it was about the tenth hour).  John 1:39

2.  The invitation to follow Him.

Then Jesus said to them, “Follow Me, and I will make you become fishers of men.  Mark 1:17

3.  The invitation to come to Him for rest for our souls.

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”  Matthew 11:28-30

4.  His final invitation to everyone.

“I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star.”  And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.  Revelation 22:16-17

Invitations From Jesus from First Baptist Church of Bemidji on Vimeo.

Sunday, May 24, 2020

The Christian Flag & The American Flag

The symbolism of the colors of the flags

The Christian Flag

  • White – Purity, Peace
  • Blue – Truth, Loyalty
  • Red – The Blood of Jesus
  • Gold – The King of Kings

The American Flag

  • Red – Hardiness, Valor
  • White – Purity, Innocence
  • Blue – Vigilance, Perseverance, Justice

Our first allegiance is to the Christian Flag.  “I pledge allegiance to the Christian flag, and to the Savior for whose Kingdom it stands; one Savior, crucified, buried, risen, and coming again with life and liberty to all who believe.”

Matthew 6:33; Philippians 3:17-21

Our second allegiance is to the American Flag.  “I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

Romans 13:1-7; 1 Peter 2:13-17

Whenever a conflict of interests arises between our allegiance to the Christian flag and our allegiance to the American flag, what do we do?

  1. We pray for our civil leaders.  1 Timothy 2:1-3; Titus 3:1-2
  2. We write to our state representative, John Persell.
  3. We do our best to follow their mandates.
  4. We only disobey their laws if they cause us to break God’s laws.  Acts 5:29

Sunday, May 17, 2020

Be Joyful and Give Thanks

Psalm 100

What are you feeling today?  Fear, Anxiety, Frustration, Anger, Sadness, Uncertainty.

“Feelings come and feelings go, feelings are deceiving. Trust I must the Word of God, none else is worth believing.”

The Psalmist gives us seven commands to do today so no matter what we are feeling, if we obey them God will change our feelings.

1.  Make a joyful shout to the Lord, all you lands.  Psalm 100:1

2.  Serve or Worship the Lord with gladness.  Psalm 100:2a

3.  Come before His presence with singing.  Psalm 100:2b

4.  Know that the Lord, He is God; It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves; we are His people and the sheep of His pasture. Psalm 100:3

5.  Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, and into His courts with praise.  Psalm 100:4a

6.  Be Thankful to Him.  Psalm 100:4b

7.  Bless His name.  Psalm 100:4c

“For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting, and His truth endures to all generations.”  Psalm 100:5

“In everything give thanks for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”  1 Thessalonians 5:18

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Teach Our Children

In our public schools we have two classifications of teachers, primary and secondary.  In the Bible we have we also have two classifications of teachers, parents, and the church.  Parents are the primary teachers and the church is the secondary teacher.

1.  Parents are commanded to teach their children. 

Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one!  You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart.  You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up.  You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.  You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.  Deuteronomy 6:4-9

2.  Churches are teaching centers for children. 

And with many other words he testified and exhorted them, saying, “Be saved from this perverse generation.” Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added to them. And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers. Acts 2:40-42

Biblical Illustration – Timothy

Timothy’s primary teachers were his Grandmother, Lois, and his mother, Eunice. 

When I call to remembrance the genuine faith that is in you, which dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice, and I am persuaded is in you also.  2 Timothy 1:5

But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.  All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:14-17

The apostle Paul was Timothy’s secondary teacher. 

Then he came to Derbe and Lystra. And behold, a certain disciple was there, named Timothy, the son of a certain Jewish woman who believed, but his father was Greek.  He was well spoken of by the brethren who were at Lystra and Iconium. Paul wanted to have him go on with him. And he took him and circumcised him because of the Jews who were in that region, for they all knew that his father was Greek. Acts 16:1-3

1 & 2 Timothy

Sunday, May 3, 2020

Suffering From Pain

From the time we are born until the time we die we will suffer some type of pain.  It might be physical, emotional., mental, or spiritual.  Pain comes to us in several different ways.

1.  When we inflict ourselves with pain. The law of sowing and reaping. 

Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.  For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.  Galatians 6:7-8

2.  When others inflict pain on us. 

Alexander the coppersmith did me much harm. May the Lord repay him according to his works.  2 Timothy 4:14

3.  When aging inflicts pain on us. 

Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day.  For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.  2 Corinthians 4:16-18

4.  When disease inflicts pain on us.  

For we do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, of our trouble which came to us in Asia: that we were burdened beyond measure, above strength, so that we despaired even of life.  Yes, we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves but in God who raises the dead…  2 Corinthians 1:8-9

“And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.”  Revelation 21:4

Sunday, April 26, 2020

When Bad Things Happen To Good People

The first verse in chapter 3 of Ecclesiastes says, “to everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under heaven.”

We find ourselves in the season of the coronavirus and bad things are happening all around the world.  I know that believers and unbelievers are trying to figure out why this is happening.

Do things just randomly happen to us or does God have a purpose in allowing this pandemic to take place?

Several years ago, I read a book titled, “When Bad Things Happen to Good People.”  By Harold Kushner.  It had been on New York’s best- selling list for years. He tried to answer the question, “How can a good God allow so much evil and suffering in the world?”

Let us examine Kushner’s false conclusions

  1. God is not omnipotent (All-Powerful)

Psalm 147:4-5; Romans 1:16; Philippians 3:10

  1. God does not mettle in His creation and in our lives.

Psalm 135:6-7; Philippians 1:6; Galatians 2:20

  1. Since God cannot stop evil, His only purpose is to comfort us.

Before we answer the question – do things just randomly happen to us or does God have a purpose in allowing this pandemic to take place?

Let us look at the reasons for evil in the world.

  1. The whole world is under the sin-curse after Adam and Eve fell into sin in Genesis 3.  Roman 5:12
  2. The whole world is under the control of the evil one. 1 John 5:19

What are God’s purposes in allowing the Coronavirus?

  1. To wake us up spiritually.
  2. To humble us.  We do not have all the answers.
  3. To show us what is important.
  4. To remind us this world is not our home.
  5. To motivate us to share the Gospel.

Sunday – April 19, 2020

How Do We Fellowship?

1 Thessalonians 2:7-8


Care – Get to know the person on a deeper level as a mother knows her children.

  • Be assertive and approach others, ask questions to get to know them. (Don’t compare yourself to others.) DON’T BELIEVE THE LIES OF THE ENEMY!

Share – Open up your life and home, invite people in.

  • Use the resources that God has given to share your life with others – home, money, vehicles, JOB

Disciple – Share the Word with someone and then study it with them – small groups, one to one discipleship, and prayer meetings.

  • Ask the Lord to bring someone to you.

Resurrection Sunday – April 12, 2020

Seeing and Believing

John 20:24-29

I don’t know if you are a believer in the resurrection of Jesus Christ. It just might be that you are a skeptic or a doubter. You may be doubting the resurrection like Jesus’ disciples did at first.

Luke 24:9-11 ~ Then they returned from the tomb and told all these things to the eleven and to all the rest. It was Mary Magdalene, Joanna, Mary the mother of James, and the other women with them, who told these things to the apostles. And their words seemed to them like idle tales, and they did not believe them.

Thomas was one of the twelve disciples that Jesus had chosen to be with Him for three years. He’s only mentioned eight times in the Scriptures. Unfortunately, he became known as Doubting Thomas.

John’s Gospel reveals how that happened

Thomas doubts the resurrection of Jesus

  1. Thomas had missed out on seeing Jesus with the other disciples
  2. Thomas didn’t believe what the other disciples told him
  3. Thomas said unless I see and touch His wounds, I will not believe

Thomas has an up-close personal encounter with Jesus

  1. Jesus shows up and says to Thomas look and touch.
  2. Jesus says do not be unbelieving but believing
  3. Thomas confesses to Jesus, “My Lord and my God”.

Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

Good Friday Service – April 10, 2020

It’s Friday But Sunday’s Coming
Contains video clips from The Passion and Risen – May be too graphic for younger viewers.

Sunday, April 5, 2020

Call To Worship

Worship Set

Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail.
They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23

Great Is Thy Faithfulness

A Beast of Burden Carrying Our Burden Carrier

Definition of a beast of burden: An animal such as a donkey, mule, elephant, camel, and ox that is used for carrying heavy loads or to perform other heavy work.

Characteristics of a donkey or burro: They are extremely cautious which sometimes makes them seem stubborn. They tend to be calm and not easily startled. They’re highly intelligent and have a great memory. They’re also very strong for their size.

For thousands of years donkeys have been the ‘helping hooves’ of humankind – they are the original beasts of burden.

Donkeys hold the distinction in the Bible as being one of the earliest and most frequently mentioned animals in the text. We find most of the Old Testament’s great historical events include donkeys in the backdrop plodding along.

There are only two animals in the Bible who talked to humans – the serpent to Eve and the donkey to Balaam.

Why did Jesus come riding on a beast of burden, a donkey, into Jerusalem?

  1. To fulfill Messianic prophecy. Matthew 21:1-11
  2. To reveal to us that He is a humble King. There’s no King like our King. Philippians 2:5-11
  3. To reveal to us that he came to carry our burden of sin to the cross. Isaiah 53:1-12
  4. To establish peace for us with our heavenly Father. Colossians 1:19-20 Romans 5:1

Sunday, March 29, 2020

Call to Worship – My Feet Are On The Rock

Scripture – Psalm 40:2
He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog,
and set my feet upon the rock making my steps secure.

Worship Set Video

I Just Wanna Be A Sheep

Psalm 23 ~ John 10:1-18

The idea of shepherding is a theme found throughout the Bible, from beginning to end. The patriarchs were all shepherds, as was Moses and of course David. David composed the most read and memorized passage in the Old Testament in Psalm 23. David knew from his experience what it was like to be a sheep and a shepherd.

What was David’s life as a shepherd?

  1. David’s responsibility with his family. 1 Samuel 16:1-13
  2. David’s experience shepherding. 1 Samuel 17:33-37

What was David’s life as a sheep and a shepherd?

  1. David’s life as a sheep. Psalm 23
  2. David’s life as a sheep and shepherd. Psalm 78:70-72

Jesus as the Good Shepherd. John 10:1-18

Jesus as the Lamb of God. John 1:29: 1 Peter 1:18-19; Isaiah 53:7