“Heaven & Hell”
Cam Liske – Foundations – Heaven & Hell
This past weekend we talked about angels at church. Neat subject. I had never really explored the ideas or truths about angels before so this was an interesting study for me. It reminded me of the important value of investigating what is actually in the scriptures, not just what I think is in the scriptures.
Angels have wings, right? Well – I didn’t find that in the scriptures. I guess that doesn’t prove they don’t have wings, but I couldn’t come to the conclusion that they do either. It’s a very subtle thing – but points to a much larger and more important issue. There is so much misinformation out there on biblical subjects – so many people interpreting scripture for you that you have to be very careful.
Study the word of God for yourself. Test long held beliefs with what you can actually find and support through the scriptures. Get involved with other brothers and sisters in Christ – and study the Word together. Ask God to provide you with wisdom and insight into the scriptures.
As we learn together, as we come to understand more and more of God, of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, our natural inclination will be to want to know more, to be more like them and to spend more time with them.
One of the most common reactions I found in scripture relating to encounters with angels was fear and reverence. God’s angels were created by Him to worship Him, to be His messengers, to help effect His will on earth. When people encountered angels, and knew they were encountering angels, they fell face down in reverence and fear. But they did one other thing – they listened for the message and were obedient to follow it through. Usually they were already on God’s mission and the angel was providing further instruction, or encouragement to carry on – so obedience was a decision that had already been made. But in some cases they were receiving amazing messages instructing them to carry out activities that would only be possible through complete trust and obedience.
As we spend more time intimately studying God’s word, we build a more trusting relationship with Him. As that trust grows – when we hear from God, from the Holy Spirit or from a Rhema (living) Word out of the scriptures – we can choose obedience as a response because it comes from a relationship of trust.
What are you trusting God for right now? What are you hearing from God right now? What are you finding that seems new and exciting in the scriptures right now? The staff at Celebration, or your caregroup would love to know. Why not share with someone what you’re hearing and what you’re believing God for this week.
Fred Hill, Pastor
Fred Hill – Foundations – Angels
“Light In The Darkness”
Fred Hill – Foundations – Light In The Darkness
I had such a great time preparing for the Foundation Series sermon “God The Holy Spirit”. I thought I knew so much about the Holy Spirit, but God refreshed my perspective and reminded me about the depth and height of Him, His Son and His Spirit. The vastness of their existence is hard to comprehend. Even the small amount of knowledge contained within the literal text (logos) of the scriptures is still only a fraction of the true spiritual reality that we live within.
As I prayed for guidance, God continued to turn His word into living lessons (rhema) for me. I shared from my prayer journal at the end of the service and it started out like this;
God: “You can study more if you’d like but I have poured out My Spirit for all people. You know that! …”
I know that! I hope you have come to know that too. Christ achieved so much while he was in human form on earth – to think that He sent the Holy Spirit so that we can achieve even more almost overwhelms me. Well, lets be honest, it does overwhelm me when I try to grasp all that could mean. Fortunately we do not have to know or understand all of the subtleties of what that means. Our responsibility is to listen to the promptings of the Holy Spirit. To hear what God wants us to hear through the Spirit and then obey. Our obedience is our spiritual act of worship.
Our spiritual act of worship is to offer ourselves as living sacrifices holy and pleasing to God. I know that God has great things in store. He desires great things for us. He longs to show us his love and to give us an abundant life.
To prove that desire He sent His Spirit, the Counselor, the Spirit of Truth – so we could know that we are no longer guilty, no longer accused and no longer judged. That has all passed away in view of God’s mercy.
In God’s mercy He has provided us with two gifts; Jesus Christ the redeemer, and the Holy Spirit the counselor – For all people!
In our family we sometimes give “just because” gifts to each other. Why? Just because! Because we love each other. Why did God send these two gifts?
“Just Because” He loves you.
2016 January 21