Showing posts with label faith. Show all posts
Showing posts with label faith. Show all posts

Thursday, November 8, 2018

What Do Christians Do Following an Election?

Author Curtis Ramsey-Lucas has some wonderful ideas for Christians who wish to remain energized and active following the just completed campaign season. Loyal opposition, the author declares, is our work. Holding our leaders to the higher standards of God's incoming kingdom, in civil discourse, is the work of a lifetime. Take a look at this article and decide for yourself if this is the work for you now that the campaign season is done: https://christiancitizen.us/the-election-is-over-now-what/?utm_campaign=coschedule&utm_source=facebook_page&utm_medium=The%20Christian%20Citizen&utm_content=The%20election%20is%20over.%20Now%20what%3F


Sunday, November 11, 2018, Sermon: Out of Her Poverty


Join us this Sunday when we will explore the meaning of the widow giving her two coins in the Temple in Jerusalem. It was all she had. Why was this significant to Jesus? Why is it significant to us? What does it have to tell us about living generous lives? Come and see. Sunday, November 11, 2018, at 11 a.m. in the Lansdowne Baptist Church sanctuary. You will be welcome!

To see the sermon: https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2018/11/out-of-her-poverty.html

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

Faithfulness: Sermon for November 4, 2018



Sermon for Sunday, November 4, 2018, based on Ruth 1:1-18. Focusing on the faithfulness of Ruth the Moabite, a foreigner who proves more faithful in Israel than God's chosen people during the years of the Judges. Ruth will protect Naomi, her mother-in-law, even when facing an uncertain future, turning away from the comforts and familiarity of home to follow Naomi from Moab to Israel. In the exploration of Ruth's exemplary faith, we discover a secret to a happy life. Come and listen. If you enjoy what you find here, are near Lansdowne, PA, and don't have a church of your own, join us Sunday morning for worship in the sanctuary. You will be welcome.

Friday, November 2, 2018

The Value of the Immigrant, the Faithful Ruth

Ruth, a Moabite, daugther-in-law of Naomi, is an example of true faithfulness. In the age of the Judges, when Israel had drifted from God, from faith, into idolatry and civil war, Ruth show what true faithfulness is all about. She gives up her people, her country, her gods, to head to a land where her people are looked down upon with suspicion and thought to be idolatrous, licenteous, people of ill repute. She makes the God of Israel her God. She stands by Naomi even though her mother-in-law has nothing to offer her in the way of a secure future. She goes out to glean in the barley fields at harvest time to feed Naomi and herself, even though it was not safe for a woman to do so in those uncertain times in Israel. When she meets Naomi's relative Boaz, this is what Boaz says of her faithfulness (word gets around in a small community like Bethlehem): 

Ruth 2:10-12: 10Then she fell prostrate, with her face to the ground, and said to him, “Why have I found favor in your sight, that you should take notice of me, when I am a foreigner?” 11But Boaz answered her, “All that you have done for your mother-in-law since the death of your husband has been fully told me, and how you left your father and mother and your native land and came to a people that you did not know before. 12May the Lord reward you for your deeds, and may you have a full reward from the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come for refuge!” 

In an age when we too look suspicously upon outsiders, it is worth taking the time to remember Ruth, the faithful Moabite. Ruth and Boaz would become the great grandparents (spoiler alert) of King David, Israel's greatest king. Ruth would be one of four women listed in the lineage of Jesus Christ. 

Wednesday, October 31, 2018

Beyond Loaves and Fishes: Matthew Week 13



On Tuesday, October 30, 2018, we continued our exploration of Matthew, finishing with the transfiguration of Jesus, returning from that mountaintop experience to grapple with life in the valley. Much life application material explored. We also spent some time praying for all our Jewish brothers and sisters grieving over their losses at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh, PA. Watch when you have a chance.

Every Tuesday night at 8 p.m. (with exceptions for the pastor's vacation and power failures), we have a live stream Bible study. You are invited to subscribe on YouTube (it's free) and join: If you'd like a little more information on becoming a subscriber, see the following. To learn how to join us on the Beyond Loaves and Fishes live stream event each Tuesday night, take a look at the following blog post and follow the simple steps: https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2018/05/beyond-loaves-fishes-livestream-bible.html

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Dealing with Evil: Article: The Tree of Life

In wake of the mass murders at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, it is hard to know how to handle a world that seems to be steeped in evil. Here are some words of encouragement and a direction to look in the Christian Citizen article "The Tree of Life" by Curtis Ramsey-Lucas. See: https://christiancitizen.us/the-tree-of-life/

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

Fair Wages



The sermon for Sunday, September 30, 2018, covers Matthew 20:1-16, the parable of the Workers in the Vineyard. It explores the issue of fairness from God's perspective rather than humanity's. God's expansive love leads to a surprising level of inclusion. We also explore what "the evil eye" meant back in the day and why we should avoid it today. Have a listen. Peace. Feel free to join us in Sunday worship if you are in the vicinity of Lansdowne, Pennsylvania, and do not have a church of your own to attend. All are welcome.

Every Tuesday night at 8 p.m. (with exceptions for the pastor's vacation and power failures), we have a live stream Bible study. You are invited to subscribe on YouTube (it's free) and join: If you'd like a little more information on becoming a subscriber, see the following. To learn how to join us on the Beyond Loaves and Fishes live stream event each Tuesday night, take a look at the following blog post and follow the simple steps: https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2018/05/beyond-loaves-fishes-livestream-bible.html

Wednesday, September 19, 2018

Walking Prayer at the John Heinz Wildlife Refuge

On Sunday, September 16, 2018, at 2 p.m., members and friends of Lansdowne Baptist Church went on a walking prayer at the John Heinz Wildlife Refuge in Philadelphia. It was wonderful to get out on a startlingly beautiful day and be quiet in God's creation. As usual, once we became still, all the wildlife around became apparent to us. It is amazing what we overlook in our hurried lives.

Our next walking prayer will be on Sunday, October 14, 2018. We meet in the church parking lot at 1:30 p.m. and travel over together. It takes roughly fifteen minutes to get to our beautiful destination. All who wish to encounter God through the natural world are welcome to join us. 

Tuesday, September 11, 2018

God's Gracious Gifts



Sunday, September 9, 2018, sermon based on Matthew 25:14-27. Jesus' disciples were anxious to know when he would return in glory. That Jesus was not going to tell them. Instead he told them a parable (story) on how to behave until he returned. The instruction offered in this story remains as valuable to Christ followers and all who are interested in following Christ as it ever was. Take a listen.

Every Tuesday night at 8 p.m. (with exceptions for the pastor's vacation and power failures), we have a live stream Bible study. You are invited to subscribe on YouTube (it's free) and join: If you'd like a little more information on becoming a subscriber, see the following. To learn how to join us on the Beyond Loaves and Fishes live stream event each Tuesday night, take a look at the following blog post and follow the simple steps: https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2018/05/beyond-loaves-fishes-livestream-bible.html

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Beyond Loaves and Fishes: Matthew Week 3



Due to a massive thunderstorm and resultant power failure, we were not able to live stream on June 3, 2018, at 8 p.m. Power did not return until midnight. So, we picked up on Tuesday, June 24, 2018, after I have a little family time.

We have been through the first two chapters. Joseph has been told by an angelic messenger that he will accept Mary as his wife, Mary remains faithful, the baby is of the Holy Spirit. Jesus is born, visited by wise Gentiles from the East, surprising the paranoid King Herod, surprising his religious experts. Herod seeks to kill Jesus as potential rival for this throne (Herod's bad habit). An angelic messenger tells Joseph to pack his family off to Egypt and stay until Herod's death, placing the new family in the plight of many refugees fleeing violence at home. What's next? Come ans see.

Every Tuesday night at 8 p.m. (with exceptions for the pastor's vacation and power failures), we have a live stream Bible study. You are invited to subscribe on YouTube (it's free) and join: If you'd like a little more information on becoming a subscriber, see the following. To learn how to join us on the Beyond Loaves and Fishes live stream event each Tuesday night, take a look at the following blog post and follow the simple steps: https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2018/05/beyond-loaves-fishes-livestream-bible.html

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Spider-Man: Matters of Heart: July 1, 2018



Sermon based on Luke 10:30-35, ending our summer superheroes series with Spider-Man. We focus on matters of the heart, whether we will have hearts cruel, calloused, or compassionate. It impacts everything we do and say. It influences the world around us and everyone we interact with. Watch and discover how.

Word of warning: we were located in our air conditioned office wing during our heat wave, which is a tighter space. While you'll hear the sermon entirely, the picture will move wildly as the camera person had to move from one location to another for late arrivals that morning.

Invitation: Join us for our new endeavor and in the new live stream community and Bible study we are creating. It is called Beyond Loaves and Fishes. Here's how to find it and participate in the half hour long Bible studies from the comfort of home.  To learn how to join us on the Beyond Loaves and Fishes live stream event tonight, take a look at the following blog post and follow the simple steps: https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2018/05/beyond-loaves-fishes-livestream-bible.html

Further, if you like what you hear in this sermon or if the Bible study intrigues you, drop by Sunday morning if you are close to Lansdowne, PA, and join us for worship. All are welcome. See this blog site for hours.

Beyond Loaves & Fishes: Matthew Week 3 Tonight, Tuesday, July 3, 2018

We have been through the first two chapters. Joseph has been told by an angelic messenger that he will accept Mary as his wife, Mary remains faithful, the baby is of the Holy Spirit. Jesus is born, visited by wise Gentiles from the East, surprising the paranoid King Herod, surprising his religious experts. Herod seeks to kill Jesus as potential rival for this throne (Herod's bad habit). An angelic messenger tells Joseph to pack his family off to Egypt and stay until Herod's death, placing the new family in the plight of many refugees fleeing violence at home. What's next? Come ans see.

To learn how to join us on the Beyond Loaves and Fishes live stream event tonight, take a look at the following blog post and follow the simple steps: https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2018/05/beyond-loaves-fishes-livestream-bible.html

If you like what you see here and you're anywhere near Lansdowne, Pennsylvania, stop on by Sunday morning and worship with us. You'll be most welcome. 

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Beyond Loaves and Fishes: Esther Week 5, Matthew Week 1



I spend a few minutes prior to the beginning of the live stream describing what we are all about here at Beyond Loaves and Fishes. I'm inviting everyone to subscribe on the J.S. Brooks channel to participate in the live stream directly and hoping people will share this small but growing community with their friends. 

We will now conclude the book of Esther. There are a few final questions we need to consider. Then we will move on to our next book to study, the Gospel According to Matthew. That book will take considerably longer than this one. I look forward to seeing you there.

To join us live on Tuesday nights, and all are welcome to do so, please follow the simple directions on the following post: https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2018/05/beyond-loaves-fishes-livestream-bible.html

Would You, Could You



Using 2 Corinthians 5:17-20, Ezekiel 37:1-11, and Dr. Seuss's Green Eggs and Ham, this sermon explored what new things Christians are called to do. It also explored how, at times, we Christians are called to speak out like Ezekiel, Paul, and Sam-I-am, being persistent for what is right in the face of strong opposition. Watch and see if God challenges you.

Every Tuesday night at 8 p.m. (with exceptions for the pastor's vacation and power failures), we have a live stream Bible study. You are invited to subscribe on YouTube (it's free) and join: If you'd like a little more information on becoming a subscriber, see the following. To learn how to join us on the Beyond Loaves and Fishes live stream event each Tuesday night, take a look at the following blog post and follow the simple steps: https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2018/05/beyond-loaves-fishes-livestream-bible.html

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Important Letter from ABC USA General Secretary 2018


AMERICAN BAPTIST CHURCHES USA
___________________________________



June 15, 2018

Mr. Jeff Sessions, Attorney General
U.S. Department of Justice
950 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20530-0001

Dear Attorney General Sessions,

I am writing to you today on behalf of the 5,000 congregations and 1.3 million members of the American Baptist Churches USA (ABCUSA). As General Secretary, I serve as the national pastor of the denomination. ABCUSA has a long and distinguished record of service in welcoming immigrants and refugees to communities throughout the United States.

The American Baptist family would like to communicate our deep concern over the unjust immigration policies of the United States government, and in particular, the unconscionable separation of children from their parents on our southern border. As a fellowship of Christ-followers who recall the trials of the child Jesus and his parents, who fled from persecution in their homeland to another country (Matthew 2:13-18), we adamantly oppose separating children from their relatives. A just society can fulfill its fidelity to its own laws and border security without resorting to such unwise and harmful practices; instead, we urge that compassion, fairness and family-affirming policies characterize our response to the plight of families on our borders. We note that destructive practices such as the separation of children from parents place a serious burden on our law enforcement agents and officials, who in carrying out such policies find their own consciences ethically compromised and troubled.

Furthermore, we strongly disagree with your erroneous appropriation of the New Testament (in particular, Romans 13) to justify inhumane and unjust governmental actions. No responsible Christian theologian would assert that Romans 13, or any other passage in the Bible, supports the horrific separation of children from parents that we are witnessing at the present time. In fact, both the Old and New Testaments call those who believe in God to welcome refugees and immigrants with open arms and friendship, with loving care and concern, and with the willingness to assist others in enjoying the prospects of a future based on hope and opportunity.

Accordingly, American Baptists wish to express our sincere hope that the separation of children and parents will immediately cease. We urge Congress and the President to approve and implement without delay more compassionate and just immigration policies and procedures. As the leading law enforcement official of our government, it is your privilege and responsibility to lead such an effort. Thank you for considering our position.

Sincerely,

 Rev. Dr. Lee B. Spitzer, General Secretary
 American Baptist Churches USA

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Foundations



Sermon based on Luke 6:46-49 answering the question, how do you know you have a firm foundation? Having one allows us to be confident in the face of the storms of life. Having one allows us to live life as confident individuals who are able to fulfill the great commandments, loving God and neighbors. Living life from that firm foundation requires trying, falling flat on our faces, getting up and trying again. Are you in? Come along and learn how it is done.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Reclaiming the Name of Jesus Movement

Given recent events, there is a movement among clergy across the nation to reclaim the name of Jesus. If you want to know more, refer to this video: https://sojo.net/media/reclaiming-jesus-time-crisis

Tuesday, May 8, 2018

Victory that Conquers the World



Sermon based on 1 John 5:1-6, in which the author is trying to quell the very real fears of Christians living through difficult times, where friends are hard to find, and truth seems uncertain, even fluid. Threats appeared everywhere and churches were starting to unravel. Sound familiar? The author takes a very simple, calming approach on how we might all respond ... and where to find the victory that conquers the world. It's uplifting and more than a little surprising. You are invited to watch.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Dominion





Sermon for Earth Day 2018 based on Genesis 1:27-31. An exploration is made into what it means for humanity to have been given dominion in creation. Explore our place in creation while listening and discover what microclimates we may care for in daily life.

Below is the first Earth Rise as seen by Apollo 8 while orbiting the moon, courtesy of NASA.
Earthrise

Moon crosses the face of the Earth, courtesy of NASA/NOAA
moon's far side overlapping the Earth

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

On the Road



Sermon based on Luke 24:13-21, in which two disciples of Jesus walk away from Jerusalem, knocking the dust of the town off their heels following Jesus' crucifixion, and heading out for the town of Emmaus. The meet a stranger on the road and life changes forever. Come and see. It's a powerful story. It also has much to say on how we ought to share our stories. Intrigued yet?