Great Day at Tabernacle

We had a wonderful day yesterday at church. We began with a combined Sunday School with Matt and Christy Taylor from the Wilds Christian Camp ministering to us in music. They gave a sacred concert that included the two of them singing and Christy playing the flute and Irish penny whistle and Matt playing the guitar. The Lord was exalted in each of the songs.

During the morning service, Matt and Christy played the offertory and Christy sang for the special. Matt then preached a challenging message.

We were privileged to host Dick and Deanna Meloy in the evening service. They are representatives with BIMI for the Caribbean Radio Lighthouse. Brother Meloy pastored for nearly thirty years at the Faith Baptist Church of Pensacola, Florida, before retiring from the pastorate to now travel and raise support for the radio station. He challenged us with a great message last night.

“Can God Really Save My Soul?”

Yesterday morning we continued in our series entitled “Can God?” Our subject was “Can God Really Save My Soul?” Our text was the familiar passage of Ephesians 2:8-9. My goal is this message was to make the gospel message as plain and simple to understand as possible. We are making CD’s and cassette tapes of this message available to our people free of charge if they promise to give it to a friend, relative, work associate, or neighbor. You can listen to this message by following this link (Can God Save My Soul?) or by visiting our sermons page.

Men’s Retreat

mensretreat.jpgWe had a great time on Friday night and Saturday morning at the Men’s Retreat held at the Living Water Christian Camp in Candor, North Carolina. God has blessed the Tabernacle Baptist Church of Candor with a godly pastor. Brother Mike Free, a good friend who I have known for about 21 years now is doing a great work at the church. The ministry is located in the middle of the woods. You have to want to go there to find the church. The church though is growing and people apparently want to go. They have beautiful property on which they also have the Living Water Christian Camp.

Our men left Wilson on Friday at about 2:00 p.m.  We arrived in Candor about 2 1/2 hours later. After getting settled into our cabin we went to the gym to goof off a little before supper. (By the way, the cabins were incredible. They were new and clean. Each one had five very solid bunk beds and one twin bed. There was also a bathroom in the cabin with two stalls and two showers). While in the gym some of the men played ping pong, others played pool or shot some baskets. We enjoyed a delicious meal and then went to our first service. Brother Matt Herbster, program director at the Wilds Christian Camp, was our special speaker. I especially enjoyed the singing. There is nothing like hearing a group of men singing from their hearts. Following the evening service the ladies of the church provided a snack for us. We then had free time. Caleb and I played basketball until about 12:30 a.m. We were able to sneak into our cabin and not wake most of the men. I know that because they were snoring. I did take ear plugs and a sound machine.

On Saturday morning we awoke, packed up and then headed back to the gym. We enjoyed another tremendous meal and then listened to another outstanding message by Brother Matt Herbster. His message on moral purity is a message that should be heard by every Christian man. We had a little more free time following the message. Several of the men played horse shoes. Some went fishing or paddle boating at the lake. A few enjoyed the zip line.  We then had one more message from Brother Matt. The ladies again provided a delicious lunch and then we left for home. We packed a lot into a little bit of time, but came away rejoicing and refreshed. We hope to see more men get excited about these types of outings.

Taxing

tax.jpgThere is no word that generates more opinions than “taxes.” And nothing is more certain, at least in Ben Franklin’s point of view, than “taxes” and that other mortal word. In 1773, Bostonians made a big batch of “sea tea.” It was a protest against the tea tax that had been levied against the colonies to pay for Britain’s Seven Year’s War. The protesters emptied 342 chests of tea, worth $16,500 into Boston Harbor (no word as to whether sugar and lemon were added). This act was very significant in the process of declaring the Colonies’ independence from the overbearing motherland. Today, there are those who refuse to pay taxes. Some actually believe their motivation is noble, while others deny Uncle Sam his due purely out of greed. Our Creator left us these inspired words: “For this cause pay ye tribute (taxes) also: for they (government) are God’s ministers, attending continually upon this very thing.” (Rom. 13:6). The fear of being caught is one reason to pay taxes. However, the highest motivation is that it is very important to God. Remember: IRS returns are less “taxing” when motivated out of a love for God.

Reflections

Death and Taxes

taxes.jpgIt’s a flip saying, but true: death and taxes are the two things we can count on. But there is a difference: we know on what day the taxes fall due; we can’t predict the day of death. We can put money aside to take care of taxes; but what provision can we make in anticipation of death? If we die before our taxes are paid, they’ll not be forgiven. The government will take them out of our estate. If we die as unrepentant sinners, our sins will not be forgiven after death. We’ll have to pay the penalty for them hereafter. But there is a difference: God has made a way of escape for us. He has already paid the penalty for our sins–yours and mine. All He asks is that you accept what He has done for you in a true spirit of repentance and faith.

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“Can God?”

This morning our congregation examined the lengthy text of Psalm 78. I encourage you to read and meditate on this awesome text. Asaph was communicating in a parable (a story with a purpose), the familiar story of the Children of Israel and their failure in the wilderness wanderings. They were called out of Egypt to follow the Lord by faith. However, they seemed to constantly doubt the power, the promises and the presence of God as they took their journey. The sinful attitude of their hearts is summed up in the two word question, “Can God?”. When they asked this question, they were demonstrating their lack of faith in God.

Psalm 78:19-20 Yea, they spake against God; they said, Can God furnish a table in the wilderness? Behold, he smote the rock, that the waters gushed out, and the streams overflowed; can he give bread also? can he provide flesh for his people?

There is no question, we are a lot like Israel. We often ask the question “Can God?” As we saw this morning the proper response should have been “God Can!”

You can listen to this sermon online by following this link: Can God? or listen to this and other messages on our sermons page.