God is on His Throne

Joshua 24 is the final chapter in the book of Joshua– a chapter that deserves careful attention.  Notice how Joshua gathered all the tribes of Israel and what He spoke before them: God’s Word. “Thus says the LORD God of Israel:” (1) I took your father Abraham… and led him… and gave him Isaac; (2) I gave unto Isaac Jacob and Esau; (3) I sent Moses also and Aaron, and I plagued Egypt; (4) I brought your fathers out of Egypt; (5) I delivered… into your hand [the men of Jericho, the Amorites, the Perizzites, and the Canaanites, and the Hittites, and the Girgashites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites; (6) I have given you a land for which ye did not labour. 

God, the LORD God, reigns supremely and is sovereign over our lives. He knows the future as well as the past.  He sees the whole picture.  We don’t. “Now therefore fear the LORD, and serve him in sincerity and in truth” (Joshua 24:14). Remember Job 1:21. The Lord gives. The Lord takes away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.

We Can Only Imagine

John wrote in Revelation 21:

Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.  And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” And he who was seated on the throne said, “Behold, I am making all things new.” Also he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true (Revelation 21:1-5 ESV).

Just imagine– our world– regenerated! “For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. (Romans 8:22-23 ESV).

The question is: will YOU be with God? Do YOU belong to Him? God “is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance” (2 Peter 3:9b ESV).  If you are not sure about your future, watch “The Story.” We pray you will know Him today. (And if you do know God through Christ, who alone can save us, we pray the song below will encourage you!)

 

Is Your Name in the Book of Life?

Pastor Sidney preached today from Revelation 20:11-15.  This passage speaks of God’s great white throne, the dead, opened books, and the book of life. The sea, death, and Hades “gave up the dead . . . and they were judged, every one of them according to their deeds.”  They were judged “from the things which were written in the books . . . And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.”

One day, each of us will stand before the presence of God.  Matthew 9:31-46 describe how “all the nations will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them . . ., as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats . . . . Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. . . . Then, He will also say to those on His left, ‘Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels.”

On which side will you be? Will your name be found in God’s book of life? We encourage you to listen here to know more. Then, take a look at the short film, “The Story” or view a full movie, “The Hope Project.”

Better yet, if you live in the Silicon Valley or are visiting our area, contact us today!

“The American Christian Attitude-Trap”

In the course of our search for a book about marriage, we came across a little booklet by Rick Thomas entitled, “Help! My Marriage Has Grown Cold.” We would like to highlight an important truth that the author proclaims with clarity, which truth is found in Philippians 1:29 and 1 Peter 2:21.  From theses verses, the apostle Paul makes clear that we are granted, “for the sake of Christ,” not only to “believe in him but also suffer for his sake.” In the words of Rick Thomas, “there are two gifts at salvation: the first is faith in Christ, and the second is personal suffering” (p.36). In other words, “suffering is part of our calling” (p.36); and the “‘good’ in Romans 8:28, and the point of the whole passage, is that I will be changed into the image of Christ, but will not necessarily grow healthy, wealthy, and wise” (p.14).

Those of us who have grown up in the American culture may have the tendency to fall into the trap of demanding or expecting a life that is “pain-free” (p.35, quoting Paul Miller’s “A Praying Life.”). We may tend to believe that we “deserve” better (p.35), which is contrary to the Bible’s teaching that what we deserve as sinners is hell. However, because “God so loved the world… he gave his one and only Son, that whosoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16 NIV).

To learn more about God’s calling, come and join us in the study of God’s Word. Contact us today or worship with us on Sundays at the venue indicated on our Calendar. We look forward to hearing from you and to meeting you!

 

A Happy Birthday!

After worshipping together this morning at the Milpitas Community Center, we had the privilege of celebrating the 65th birthday anniversary of a fellow servant of the Lord!

Witnessing her tears of joy calls to mind God’s goodness, for in our pilgrimage as believers in Christ, we can all attest to the wonder of how our Heavenly Father helps us.

Indeed, if we take the time to look back as to how the Lord has patiently led us; and, as we take the time to renew our mind with His Word, recognizing His sovereignty and grace, we can heartily testify like the Psalmist, “The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him.” (Psalm 28:7 NIV)