This is where you will find out what's going on at our church. The Monthly News, Weekly Sermons, Calendar of Events and Special Notices. For more information about location, staffing and services, visit OUR WEBSITE. Also, go to that website to view the older sermons - they are available there as links and there are about 200 to choose from!

Thursday, September 21, 2017

From the Pastor...

A character so original, so complete, so uniformly consistent, so perfect, so human, and yet so high above all human greatness, can be neither a fraud nor fiction. The poet, as has been well said, would in this case be greater than the hero. It would take more than a Jesus to invent a Jesus. 
- Philip Schaff

He who clearly discerns the perfect character of Jesus will be most urgent in prayer for grace to grow like Him.  - C. H. Spurgeon

...If we would be truly enlightened, and delivered from all blindness of heart, let therefore our chief endeavor be to meditate upon the life of Christ.  - Gerard Groote

The inner life of Jesus was unique. It is the life of God lived out in a person. This life by His Spirit is given to every true believer. But it must be nurtured and sustained by a daily desire and decision to be in touch with the Lord; to receive the promised power to live His kind of life instead of our own self-oriented life. How serious can one be about this if they refuse to take time each day to come to God's presence in prayer and Hear Him speak to their heart through His Word? HE HIMSELF IS OUR POWER. Time with Him brings the necessary strength to resist the influence and control of the present world system.  - John A. Cerrato, Jr.

Friday, September 8, 2017

From the Pastor...

And this is the confidence that we have in Him: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.  - 1 John 5:14

God's promises are the signed check, made payable to order, which we must endorse and present for payment. Though the Bible be crowded with golden promises from cover to cover, yet they will be inoperative until we turn them into prayer.  - F. B. Meyer

It is utterly impossible for faith to overdraw its account in God's bank. God could no more disappoint faith than He could deny Himself. He can never say to faith, "You have miscalculated; you take too lofty, to bold a stand; go lower and lessen your expectations."  - C. H. M.

Let us come in full assurance, 
We whose hearts are purified
By the precious blood of Jesus
And in whom His words abide;
Great things let us ask, undoubting,
Through our faith in Him made bold;
He is faithful that has promised,
- He will nothing good withhold!

There is One whose love unbounded
Gave His Son that we might live;
How shall He not with Him, also,
All things else as "freely give"?
"Thou shalt call, and I will answer,"
Such th' assurance giv'n of old;
And He's faithful that has promised, 
- He will nothing good withhold!

- Mable Johnson Camp

Saturday, August 19, 2017

From the Pastor...

A Different Way of Living
By Rev. James Snyder
Some dates are so pivotal that they change the whole course of history. Unfortunately, many of those dates lie comfortably in the shadows of obscurity. One such date in the life of A. W. Tozer has eluded me. As the story is told, Tozer, a pastor at the time,was visiting one of his favorite bookstores in downtown Chicago. As he was perusing the shelves of used books that were so familiar to him, he ran across an old book that he had never seen before. He purchased the book and took it home, and his lifewas neverthe same.

The name of the book was Spiritual Counsel, and its author, François Fénelon, struck a warm cord in Tozer’s own heart. Although Tozer allowed others to borrow many books in his personal library, he never allowed this one particular book to leave his possession to the day he died. He talked about the book so much that people began to inquire about it. As far as Tozer could determine, the book was out of print, and no other copies were available. One man was so interested in the book that, though Tozer did not allow him to take it out of his library, he did allow him to come and type out chapter after chapter.

Such was the prominence that Tozer gave to this book. Much to Tozer’s delight, the book was eventually republished in an updated and expanded edition titled Christian Perfection.

When you read Fénelon’s book, you soon recognize a heartbeat that was also shared by Tozer. No two people were more alike in the spiritual realm. In fact, Fénelon’s work so inspired Tozer that if you listen carefully to his sermons, you can hear the words of François Fénelon peek through on many occasions. Tozer, of course, was familiar with the works of other great writes—A. B. Simpson, John Wesley and Andrew Murray to name a few—but something about François Fénelon stirred the depths of his heart and his passion for God. Fénelon’s book introduced Tozer to a whole line of Christian “mystics”—a word not highly acceptable in evangelistic circles during Tozer’s time (or even during our own)—and he went on to introduce these mystics to the evangelical church of his time. Tozer was not so much interested in literature as he was in pursuing God, and if an author could open up his heart to more of God, he was interested in that person.

As you read this book, you will find many of these old saints of God that stirred Tozer’s imagination popping in and out, enriching the message that was so important to him. During his younger years, Tozer was primarily an evangelist. Although he was also a pastor of a local church, he spent much of his time going around the country preaching in conferences and at churches and camp meetings. His primary message at the time was evangelistic. However, after he encountered François Fénelon, his message began to change. When we come to Tozer in this book, we are coming to a man who is aflame with the message of the crucified life.

The Crucified Life and Spiritual Perfection

Now, what did Tozer mean by the “crucified life”? This entire book is an answer to that question, but here we can simply say that it is the life Christ ransomed on the cross, redeemed from the judgment of sin, and made a worthy and acceptable sacrifice unto God. This represents a quality of life that is far above anything that is natural. It is altogether spiritual, which is a result of a dynamic inspiration from on high.

Another term that was not common among the evangelicals of Tozer’s day was “spiritual perfection.” This term came from François Fénelon, and it embodied the passion of Tozer’s heart. Tozer was quick to point out that he wanted nothing whatsoever to do with anything that did not have biblical authority—and he also threw out anything that was extra-biblical. However, spiritual perfection was a term that Tozer found to be biblical, as Paul writes in Philippians 3:12: “Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus.” This should be the great passion of the Christian’s heart—to press forward unto what the apostle Paul called “perfection.”

There were many things about the crucified life that interested Tozer. It was a life that was absolutely and irreconcilably incompatible with the world. It breathed the rarefied air of heaven while walking on earth. To the believer, it meant the absolute death of ego and the resurgence of Christ in his or her life. Emphatically, Tozer taught that Christ did not die on the cross just to save people from hell; rather, He died on the cross so that all could become one with Christ. That concept was so personally important to Tozer that anything that came between him and that unity with Christ had to be courageously dealt with and done away with, regardless of the cost.

The message of the crucified life was not a new concept. Tozer himself noted that all of the great Christians of the past wrote about this idea in some fashion. It was the unifying factor among a wide diversity of Christians down through the  ages. The legacy of the church fathers, of the reformers, the revivalists, the Christian mystics and the hymnists all resonated on this one message. And while they might disagree on many points, in this one area there was a unique unity among them. The emphasis of the crucified life was to press forward—regardless of the difficulties and in spite of the cost—to the state of spiritual perfection.

A Difficult Message 

Tozer often confessed he would have preferred to simply talk about God all the time—about how wonderful God is and how wonderful it is to be on our way to heaven, enjoying the blessings of the Lord day by day. He would have preferred to preach such positive sermons. But the Spirit stirred him to keep pressing the deep things of God. There was more to the Christian life than just being saved from the past and from one’s sins. There was more to the Christian life than having a happy time on one’s way to heaven. 

Tozer saw the evangelical and fundamentalist churches of his day selling out to the world, just as the liberal churches did before them, and it disturbed him greatly. It bothered him to see these churches compromising with worldly values and slipping into the murky error of liberalism. It goaded him that the gospel churches were adopting worldly measures to build up church attendance, and he saw that many church leaders were using these things to promote themselves. It was an era of what many called “easy believism.” Simply put, the idea was that if you said you believed in Jesus, everything else would be all right. You did not have to change anything, for God loved you just the way you were.

This kind of message stirred Dr. Tozer greatly. And Tozer was at his best when he was stirred. It was for this reason that during the last years of his life, Tozer preached and wrote about the importance of living the crucified life. He felt an inward spiritual urging to sound the clarion call for the Church to return to the roots of the Christian message—the message of “Christ in you, the hope of glory” (Col. 1:27). Several times he said, “God did not call me to be a back scratcher,” and anyone who heard him preach or read any of his editorials knew that was quite true.

He was not interested in making people feel good about themselves; in fact, his agenda was quite the opposite. To Tozer, there was nothing good in man or even in the Christian—the only good was in Christ. Tozer’s goal was not to make attacks against a person, but he always sought to speak the truth as he saw it in love. As you might imagine, this did not always make him friends. One time, he told Dr. D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones of London that he had preached himself off every Bible conference in America. Of course, that was a bit exaggerated, because he was in demand at Bible conferences all across the country up until the time of his death. But some places did not invite him back. Regardless, he was tough and uncompromising on this issue because of what he felt was the seriousness of the condition of the evangelical church. He did not feel called of God to smooth ruffled feathers; rather, his calling was to ruffle some of those feathers. Reverend Ray McAfee, a longtime associate pastor with Dr. A. W. Tozer, once told me the following story: Tozer was attending a holiness convention that was celebrating its fiftieth anniversary. He was the keynote speaker, and there were a number of preliminaries before he came to the pulpit. People were going around cutting other people’s ties in half, there was impromptu singing along the lines of what we would call karaoke, and everybody was having a good old time celebrating the anniversary. McAfee could see Tozer tapping his right foot. The longer he sat there, the more he tapped his right foot. McAfee knew that Tozer was getting stirred. When Tozer walked up to the pulpit, his first words were, “What’s happened to you holiness people?” Then Tozer took them to the spiritual woodshed asthey had never been taken before.

Nothing was more serious to Tozer than the things of God. He had a sense of humor, but he did not consider the gathering of God’s people to be a frivolous occasion but rather a time for worship and adoration of God. To Tozer, if you needed entertainment to get a crowd, it was not Christian.

The Challenge of the Crucified Life 

This book is strong medicine for what Tozer considered a serious spiritual malady. The more serious the condition, the more radical the remedy; and for this reason, Tozer was willing to uncompromisingly confront people with the message of the crucified life. It must be said that this message did not come without cost for Tozer. His friends and family often misunderstood him. He once wrote an editorial titled “The Saint Walks Alone,” which he wrote from experience. It is easy to go along with the crowd, but the one who is committed to living the crucified life will always lean hard into the wind of opposition and misunderstanding. Thus, living the crucified life is not an easy proposition—in fact, it will be the most challenging thing you will ever face. The cost is certainly high. The pathway is rough. The way forward is often lonely. But the rewards you will gain of knowing God in intimate fellowship will be well worth the journey.

(The Introduction to the classic The Crucified Life by A.W.Tozer)

Friday, August 11, 2017

From the Pastor's Wife...

To trust God in the light is nothing, but to trust Him in the dark—that is faith.   - Charles Haddon Spurgeon

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

From the Pastor...

Civilizations die from suicide, not by murder.

Of the twenty-two civilizations that have appeared in history, nineteen of them collapsed when they reached the moral state the United States is in now.

The human race's prospects of survival were considerably better when we were defenseless against tigers than they are today when we have become defenseless against ourselves.

- Arnold J. Toynbee

Thursday, July 13, 2017

From the Pastor...

And if I may speak for myself, I shall not feel happy and encouraged until I feel that the Church is concentrating on this one thing: prayer for revival. But we have not come to it. We are still in the state of deciding in committees to do this, that, and the other, and asking God to bless what we have done. No, there is no hope along that line. It must be that one thing. We must feel this burden, we must see this as the only hope, and we must concentrate on this, and we must keep on with it—the orderliness, the arrangement, the concentration, the argument, and always the urgency. Moses here is as Jacob was in Genesis 32. This element always comes into true intercession. “I will not let thee go,” said Jacob. I am going on. The morning was breaking; he had been struggling through the night. “Let me go.” “No, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me.” There is the urgency. Read the great biblical prayers; it is always in them. In Acts 4, we read of the Christians asking God to act “now!”Oh God,” they said, “in the light of this, in our situation now: do this. Give us some indication, give us some signs, enable us to witness with this holy boldness, and to bear witness to the resurrection that they are prohibiting us to speak about.” See the urgency of the prayer. Moses keeps on coming back to it, repeating it, putting it in different forms and from different angles. But there was just this one thing: “If thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence.” Insisting urgently, “I will not let thee go.” There, it seems to me, are some of the lessons from this passage. We say our prayers, but have we ever prayed? Do we know anything about this encounter, this meeting? Have we the assurance of sins forgiven? Are we free from ourselves and selfconcern that we may intercede?

Have we a real burden for the glory of God and the name of the Church? Have we this concern for those who are outside? And are we pleading with God for His own name’s sake because of His own promises to hear us and to answer us? Oh, my God, make of us intercessors such as Moses! It is no use anybody saying, “Ah, but he was an exceptionally great man.” God, as we have seen in the history of revivals, has made use of men who are mere nobodies in exactly the same way as He used Moses here…It can be any one of us. May God make of us intercessors such as Moses was.

(From Revival by Dr. Martin Lloyd-Jones

Friday, June 23, 2017

From the Pastor...

Not yesterday's load we 
are called on to bear,
Nor the morrow's uncertain
and shadowy care;
Why should we look forward
or back with dismay?
Our needs, as our mercies,
are but for the day.

One day at a time,
and the day is His day;
He hath numbered its hours,
though they haste or delay.
His grace is sufficient,
we walk not alone'
As the day, so the strength
that He giveth His own.

- Annie Johnson Flint

Friday, June 2, 2017

From the Pastor...

God is Love.  1 John 4:8b

Love is an image of God, and not a lifeless image, but the living essence of the divine nature which beams full of all goodness. - Luther

Not matter how often your faith in such an announcement was clouded, no matter how the pain and suffering of the moment made you speak in a wrong mood...God is love.
Live in the belief of it; preach it by your sweetened, chastened, happy life; sing it in consecrated moments of peaceful joy: God is love.
Song is the sign of an unburdened heart; so sing your songs of love unbidden, ever rising higher and highest unto fuller concept of the greatest, grandest fact on the stage of life: God is love. - Oswald Chambers

Love is the purification of the heart from self; it strengthens and ennobles the character, gives a higher motive and a nobler aim to every action of life and makes both man and woman strong, noble and courageous; and the power to love truly and devotedly is the noblest gift with which a human being can be endowed; but it is a sacred fire that must not be burned to idols. - Jewsbury

We are shaped and fashioned by what we love. - Geothe

It is possible that a man can be so changed by love as hardly to be recognized as the same person. - Terence

The cure for all the ills and wrongs, the cares, the sorrows and the crimes of humanity, all lie in that one word "love". It is the divine vitality that everywhere produces and restores life. To each and every one of us, it gives the power of working miracles if we will. - L. M. Child

They are the true disciples of Christ, not who know most, but who love most. - Spanheim

O love of God most free, come, warm my heart, come fill my soul, come lead me unto Thee. - Oscar Clute