Bethel Baptist Church
Worship Service @ Home
13 November 2022
Remembrance Sunday – let’s remember all those and their families who served and made the ultimate sacrifice in giving their lives to defend our freedom and way of life.
Stella had a picture of a bird with a broken wing that needed lots of loving care, patience, protection, and a safe place for its wing to heal and enable it to fly again. Then a picture of a tree being pruned of branches in order that it might go on to produce fruit more abundantly and of a better quality.
Be patient with everyone. Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else. Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. Do not quench the Spirit.1 Thessalonians 5:14-19
We are called as Christians to do many things that don’t come naturally to us. We all have areas we struggle with, how about “Be patient with everyone” and the “everyone” here means not only those in church but those outside as well; or “always strive to do what is good for …. everyone” – how many have later testified as to one of the reasons that they became a Christian was that Christians helped them, were kind to them, showed Jesus’ love to them.
And that is what it always comes back to – Jesus’ love, In love He died to deal with our sins and our old sinful nature:
“It is easy enough to be well disposed toward those who treat us well, but it is of the essence of the Christian attitude that ‘agape’, self-giving love, be practiced toward all, even the unkind and vindictive. Our Master, for our salvation, endured patiently the insults and the injuries of wicked men. He, the Just, died for the unjust. In both these ways His example is important for His people. As the servant is not greater than His Lord, we must expect to be called on to show the same kind of patience under provocation. And since He came to die for sinful people, we must expect that our meekness is to be by way of ministering to the needs of the sinful also.”
And to live out this Christian life daily and continually we need the continual empowering of the indwelling Holy Spirit, Paul writes “Do not quench the Spirit” (1 Thes 5:19) which is another key to enabling us to carry out these exhortations e.g. “Rejoice always” – such joy is a fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22) and he wasn’t writing to Christians who had an easy life rather,
You became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you welcomed the message in the midst of severe suffering with the joy given by the Holy Spirit.1 Thess. 1:6
Likewise, “Pray continually” doesn’t mean we have to be saying prayers continually throughout the day, rather prayer includes fellowship and friendship with God – when we go for a walk with a friend there are moments of silence, of just appreciating their company, and likewise we can always be aware of the Presence of the one who said “Surely, I am with you always” (Matt. 28:20 and cf. Heb. 13:5(c)). Likewise with thanksgiving, he exhorts these believers going through persecution for the sake of the gospel, to “give thanks in all circumstances”, for they, being right with God, could be certain that, He, in all things, was working out His good, pleasing, and perfect will. The same for ourselves, Amen!
Quote of the week
“To be able to give thanks in all circumstances presupposes a recognition of God’s sovereignty, that in all these circumstances (whatever the appearance might be) He is working for the good of those who love Him.”
D. J. Williams
Verse of the week
So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in Him, rooted and built up in Him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness.”Colossians 2:6-7
Heavenly Father, thank You that You never ask us to do something that You don’t equip us to do. Lord empower us by Your Spirit to be more like Your Son, in our relationships with one another and the world in general, in Jesus Christ, Amen