Showing posts with label recommended readings. Show all posts
Showing posts with label recommended readings. Show all posts

Friday, May 31, 2019

Hate and Violence Cannot Defeat Love and Faith

Rev. Lee Spitzer, the General Secretary of our denomination (American Baptist Churches USA) has some thoughts about what all Christians may do to help thwart the rise of hatred around the world and right here at home. 

He begins: we “mourn with those who mourn” (Romans 12:15). As American Baptists, we stand in sincere sympathy with all people who suffer violence, injury and harm, regardless of religion, race, gender, culture or ethnicity. We oppose terrorism, violence and hateful ideologies. The Gospel of love surely shall triumph over evil.

He goes on to say, he wishes to do more and has suggestions on what that "more" should be. Give it a read: https://www.abc-usa.org/2019/05/a-pastoral-letter-from-abcusa-general-secretary-lee-b-spitzer/

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

We Are a Diverse Congregation: Come and See


We at Lansdowne Baptist Church are very proud of our congregation. The way we relate to one another and function as one people comes almost second nature, because that's who we are. We recognize our differences but are always willing to learn more from each other. Only then can we get a closer understanding and appreciation. Our diversity lends credibility to what we stand for as it closely follows the teachings of Jesus. Our arms are open as we welcome all into his house.


Revelation 7:9-10: “After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!”


~Will Thompson


Friday, April 5, 2019

Beyond Loaves and Fishes: Lenten Live Stream Week 4



On Thursday night, April 4, 2019, we wrapped up our study from N.T. Wright's book, The Day the Revolution Began. We discovered Jesus' vocation, how that vocation was lived out in his crucifixion, and how it has been passed along to us today. We examined what this means for us. We were given a lot to ponder and a lot to do. Come and watch. See if you aren't encouraged to do a few things differently yourself. Have a blessed seaons of Lent and Easter.

Subscribe to the J.S. Brooks YouTube channel, click on the bell, and you'll receive updates as to the next live stream experience. Go to: https://www.youtube.com/user/TheJBSnyder

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Racism and the Church


Lansdowne Baptist Church is proud to be a diverse, multi-cultural church. That alone doesn't guarantee racial harmony, but it provides firsthand insight, and communication between members of different races. Segregated churches do not have the benefit of that particular social interaction. Some even experience the perils of "single-mindedness" which can foster deeply embedded and pervasive structures of racism, and in extreme cases, lead to horrible hateful acts of violence. The many intricate levels of racism are hard to combat, even when it is a recognized problem, with people willing to address it. See the article at: https://baptistnews.com/article/beyond-condemning-racist-violence-the-white-church-must-grapple-with-ways-it-is-implicated-in-that-violence/#.XJ6cDphKiUk

~Will Thompson 

Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Real Life Superheroes Helping Others

With the massive popularity of movies, Superheroes have become a big part of our culture. They were created to inspire us to be greater than we thought possible. But there are special people who actually exist, capable of accomplishing extraordinary feats in real life. Gal Gadot is an actress who portrays one of the most famous superheroes in the world. She happens to be one of those special, real life people, doing incredible things to help those in need. Gal is an Isreali  wonder woman, who has the courage to fight for what's right by challenging leaders of her faith, to show love to those wrongfully persecuted because of their religion. 


~Will Thompson

Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Beyond Loaves and Fishes: Ruth Week 2



Last week we finished the book of Matthew and provided some short introductory material into the book of Ruth. Tonight we really get to know this woman of faith from the Old Testament and her powerful story. Join us. Peace, Rev. Jeff Snyder

Subscribe to the J.S. Brooks YouTube channel, click on the bell, and you'll receive updates as to the next live stream experience. Go to: https://www.youtube.com/user/TheJBSnyder

Friday, November 30, 2018

Be the Hope You Seek

We have been through tough times, including a brutal election season. People could really use some hope out there in the midst of a deeply divided culture. We can be that hope, using five basic steps. That requires us to be bold, to stand up, and to keep our heads up as Jesus calls us to do in Luke 21:28. It's not that hard once we start. You will find those five basic steps in an article in the American Baptist magazine Christian Citizen. The article is by Richard C. Harwood. Take a look through this link: https://christiancitizen.us/post-nasty-midterms-5-steps-to-engendering-real-hope/

Thursday, November 29, 2018

Making a Difference in 2018 and Beyond

It feels as if it is impossible to make a difference today in a world so full of violence, hate, and division. Often we feel like we want to keep our heads down, our mouths shut, and pray we live another day, each of us and those we love. That is a hard way to live. There is an alternative. How do we make a difference? What actually represents a difference to be made in a world where so much is washed away so quickly? Take a look at the article from Christian Citizen by Rev. Dr. Debora Jackson and be inspired: https://christiancitizen.us/making-lasting-footprints/

And remember what Jesus said in Luke 21:28: ... stand up and raise your heads ...

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Beyond Loaves and Fishes: Matthew Week 15




Beyond Loaves and Fishes is back with our fifteenth week studying the book of Matthew. We are getting into the later chapters now, and tension is building between the leadership of the Temple and Jesus. The parables are getting thornier and the final confrontation ... and victory ... is approaching rapidly. Join us every Tuesday night at 8 p.m. on the J.S. Brooks YouTube channel for the next live stream and be part of the conversation. We look forward to seeing you there. Peace, Rev. Jeff Snyder

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

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


Friday, November 2, 2018

Better Together When We Boldly Go

There is a strength in diversity that we just don't get if we are suspicious of others and stick to tight little communities of other people just like us. Paul told the church of Corinth that. Paul let the Romans know that Jewish and Gentile Christians working together were far stronger than if they splintered apart along Jewish and Gentile lines. And, of course, from 1966 onward, Star Trek has reinforced that ideal. Better to boldly go together than to huddle in little enclaves separated by race, by religion, or by whatever else we choose to divide ourselves by. 

For more on this topic, see the article in Patheos by Erin Wathen titled "Boldly Go: The Gospel of Star Trek." I think you'll be glad you did: https://www.patheos.com/blogs/irreverin/2018/09/boldly-go-the-gospel-of-star-trek/

Then join us Sunday morning at Lansdowne Baptist Church. We are an American Baptist church, member of one of the most diverse denominations there is. We are pretty diverse ourselves, as you'll soon see, and ready to welcome you so we can all boldly go together. See you in the sanctuary!  

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, July 3, 2018

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. 

Thursday, May 31, 2018

Escape from Busy Lives for a Moment and Rest


Come now, little man [and woman],
turn aside for a while
from your daily employment, 
escape for a moment
from the tumult of your thoughts.
Put aside your weighty cares, 
let your burdensome distractions wait,
free yourself awhile for God
and rest awhile in him.
Enter the inner chamber of your soul,
shut out everything except God
and that which can help you in seeking him,
and when you have shut the door, seek him.
Now, my whole heart, say to God,
"I seek your face, Lord,
it is your face I seek." 
~Anselm of Canterbury in Theology for a Troubled Heart
Excerpt found in The President's Devotional by Joshua DuBois



Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Beyond Loaves and Fishes: Technical Glitch 5-22-18



What we had here was a failure of equipment to communicate! We did not have the opportunity to have our Bible study, the second week of the book of Esther last night, Tuesday, May 22, due to a failure of the encoder and YouTube to communicate with each other. It took an hour and twenty minutes to track down the problem, but I believe it is solved now and we'll be able to move forward again next Tuesday, May 29, at 8 p.m. I hope to see you all there. In the video here is an explanation of the issue and an answer to some general questions that came up in our first week.

Any new venture has challenging moments and this one was mine. I apologize for the inconvenience, but it was a real learning opportunity. As the prophet Jeremiah said in chapter 8, verse 4: When people fall, do they not get back up again? He calls his people not to be involved in perpetual backsliding but to get up again. So we will in this case. Proverbs 24:16 gives us a reality check, reminding us this will not be the only time I stumble in the production of this live stream. As the text says, for though the righteous fall seven times, they will rise again. I have fallen once. I hope not to fall again soon, but who knows? I hope you will stay with me for the adventure. Things will get better as we move along, learning together how this all works. We will also learn many valuable life lessons from the Bible as we study together.

Have a blessed day. I hope to meet with you next Tuesday evening from our respective homes. Once again, I apologize for this delay.

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Beyond Loaves and Fishes: Esther Class 1



Tonight we begin our study of the Book of Esther in the Old Testament. Tonight we also begin the entire Beyond Loaves and Fishes series of live stream Bible studies. This is learning experience for us all. Polish will come later, with experience. The material to be covered in this first half hour will be background material setting up our study of Esther. There are certain things that must be clear before we get into the details. Thanks to the early adventurers who signed on for this first night. There was a little excitement at the beginning as the power went off briefly as a storm was passing through. The internet connection was reestablished about 30 seconds before I went live. Thanks for coming. Hope to see you all again soon.

If you are seeing this here on the blog for the first time and would like to participate live, follow this link and subscribe at the J.S. Brooks YouTube platform: https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2018/05/beyond-loaves-fishes-livestream-bible.html

Thursday, January 18, 2018

LBC Blog Recognized


Recently our blog was listed on Feedspot as among the “Top 50 Baptist Blogs and Websites.” It is nice to be noticed as we serve our community. It is also humbling to be included among some pretty august company. Thanks to the judges. To see the listings and discover some more useful sources of information, go to: https://blog.feedspot.com/baptist_blogs/

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Strong Foundation



Sermon for November 19, 2017, on the 130th anniversary of Lansdowne Baptist Church's 1887 founding. The sermon is based on Luke 6:47-49, Jesus' parable of the wise and foolish architects. One builds on a strong foundation and weathers all storms. Jesus' teachings and example and salvation are that strong foundation. Worthwhile consideration for all churches today.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Siblings



Sermon based on Genesis 37:1-4, 18-38, showing us the dysfunctional, grudge poisoned, hateful relationship between Joseph and his brothers. We explore how to equip ourselves against dysfunction and hate in our own day and age, like the hate so prominently on display at the race riot and terrorism in Charlottesville, Virginia, August 11-12, 2017. Being so equipped, we must work all our lives against letting hatred consume us.

If you doubt your small efforts or talents can be any use in fighting against human hatred, intolerance, racism, etc., take a look at the following sermon and rethink: https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2017/08/against-all-expectations.html

For specific reactions from our denomination to the race riot and terrorism in Charlottesville, Virginia, in August 2017, which I heartily agree with and endorse, see the following posts: https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2017/08/american-baptist-home-mission-societies.html and https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2017/08/abcusa-general-secretary-speaks-to.html

American Baptist Home Mission Societies Speaks Out Against Racism and Violence

Following the awful demonstration of hate and terrorist violence in Charlottesville, Virginia, in August of 2017, the American Baptist Home Mission Society released the following statement that we here at Lansdowne Baptist Church fully support and endorse. American Baptist Churches USA is one of the most diverse denominations in the United States and that diversity is our strength! ~Reverend Jeffrey B. Snyder


American Baptist Home Mission Societies denounces and condemns—in the strongest manner possible—the violent and deadly demonstration led by a host of white supremacist organizations and individuals in Charlottesville, Va., on Saturday.
The human toll of three lives lost senselessly and more than two dozen individuals injured stains our American stature on the world stage. The racial and religious hatred expressed by the Neo-Nazi, Alt-Right, Ku Klux Klan and other racist organizations in opposition to the city’s decision to remove a monument memorializing the American Civil War’s Confederacy and its standard bearers is an affront to democracy and our social order.
We join with people of goodwill across our country who seek to make America’s public squares, government grounds and city streets safe for all citizens.
Furthermore, we commend and pray for all the valiant clergy, students, justice workers and others who gathered in Charlottesville to say “no” to violence, threats and intimidation from the white supremacist demonstrators.
In the wake of yet another terrifying episode of violence in America’s public square, we pray for the families and loved ones of Heather Heyer, whose life was tragically taken during the vehicular assault on dozens of peace workers. We pray, too, for the families and loved ones of Lt. H. Jay Cullen and Trooper-Pilot Berke M.M. Bates—the Virginia state police troopers who died in a helicopter crash related to the situation in Charlottesville—along with those who were victims of assaults and trauma, both physical and emotional, resulting from the violence.
“We call upon people of faith and goodwill to continue to pray and work on behalf of freedom, justice and peace in the United States of America and throughout the world,” says Dr. Jeffrey Haggray, ABHMS executive director. “Never were these prayers and this work needed more.”

For more, see: https://lansdownebaptistchurch.blogspot.com/2017/08/abcusa-general-secretary-speaks-to.html