Pastor's Blog

Understanding Grace

On Wednesday Night, May 18th, at 6:30pm, we will study "Grace." Grace is a word that is easy to say or sing but difficult to understand. We sing lots of songs about God's "Amazing Grace." Grace translates the Greek word "charis" which means "unmerited favor or undeserved gift." Ephesians 2:8 clearly tells us that our salvation is "the gift of God" that we have be given and it is not based on anything we have done.  In Romans 5, it is referred to as a "free gift."

     All those definitions seem to be simple enough - until you try to apply it. Some Christians believe that this free gift of God's Grace is given forever. Other Christians believe that God can take away His grace and that you can "fall from grace." Some Christians believe that you are saved by grace, but you must maintain this grace through good behavior and keeping Biblical commandments. Other Christians say that we are freed from the Law and you don't have to keep any rules in this free grace relationship with God.   

     That will be our Wednesday Night question for the Evening: 

                                  How do we apply God's Grace? 

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Knowing your Spiritual Gifts

On Wednesday Night, May 11th, at 6:30pm, we will study Spiritual Gifts. With Memorial Day 3 weeks away, Summer will soon be upon us and our New Church Year will begin at the first of September. The month of May signals the beginning of the work of our "Ministry Placement Team" (also known as the Nominating Committee) who will be matching our member's spiritual gifts to ministry assignments within the church.

     Even though Northlake Baptist Church is not considered a big church, it still takes approximately 300 volunteers or "willing workers" in order for all the ministries of Northlake Baptist Church to happen. For all of our ministries to be successful in obeying the Great Commission of our Lord Jesus Christ to make disciples, our Ministry Placement Team needs to do more than just "fill a slot" - we need people who are saved, and sanctified, and discovering their spiritual gifts, and then finding their place of service in the Body of Christ.

     How do we do that? How do we help believers find their place of service? How do we match spiritual gifts with places of service? It all begins with you !

     Our Wednesday Night Question of the Week is: 

                Do you know your Spiritual Gifts?

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Christian Boycotts?

On Wednesday Night, May 4th, at 6:30pm, we will study the tactics involved in fighting a Culture War. I've received several requests about using boycotts against corporations who use their money, advertising, and influence to promote immoral and unBiblical agendas.

     In Matthew 5:13, Jesus said “You are the salt of the earth... 14 “You are the light of the world... 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven."  With these words, Jesus was calling Christians to be "change agents" in this world. In the early days of our country, many of our elected officials were devout Christians who used their authority to influence the nation toward the Biblical standards of good and godliness.

     In recent years, secular humanism has increased leaving Christians on the losing side of the culture war. So, in the current environment, what does it mean for a Christian to be "Salt and Light"? Should Christians participate in boycotts to try to put pressure on corporations to change their minds and adopt a more Christian view of ethics and morality?

     That will be our Wednesday Night Question of the Week: Should Christians participate in Boycotts?  

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Prepping for Persecution

On Wednesday Night, April 27th, at 6:30pm, we will study about "Preparing for Persecution." We will begin with the story of Pastor Andrew Brunson who had served in Turkey for 23 years as an Evangelical Presbyterian missionary & church planter. But in July 2016 after an assassination attempt on Turkish President Erdogan, Pastor Brunson was arrested on false charges of terrorism and spying and was imprisoned for 2 years. In October 2018, He was released only after pressure from President Trump's administration. 

     He admits that he "broke" under the pressure of interrogation and persecution and had it not been for the prayers of fellow Christians and the encouragement of his wife who refocused him on his Love FOR & Faith IN Christ, he may have turned his back on the Lord altogether.

     Since Pastor Brunson's release from prison - he has been warning the American church to prepare for persecution. He doesn't believe American Christians are prepared because of the influence of the "prosperity gospel" that has been preached for decades which promises that if believers have enough faith, then they will receive peace, prosperity, power, protection, and miracles. But when you find yourself behind bars and you pray and no earthquakes happen and the jail doors do not open and it seems that God is silent - How do you handle it?  

     Our Wednesday Night Question of the Week: Are you Prepared for Persecution? 

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"Abiding in Christ"

On Wednesday Night, April 20th, at 6:30pm, we will study about what it means to "Abide in Christ."  Back in the 1990's, Dr. Charles Stanley wrote a book called "The Wonderful Spirit Filled Life." In the book, Dr. Stanley summarized John 15 as follows: "The vine is Christ, I am the branch. The Holy Spirit is the sap that runs from the vine into the branch. The branch lives, grows, and bears fruit, not by struggles and effort, but simply by abiding."

Our Wednesday Night Question of the Week is - Are you abiding in Christ? 

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