Sunday, April 13, 2014

April 13, 2014 | Pastor John Bayles | Pruned for Fruitfulness | John 15:1-16

Jesus’ public ministry is over. The setting for these verses is the upper room where Jesus has gathered with His disciples for the Passover meal - His final meal with them. He has washed their feet. Though there is no mention of the Lords supper in the Gospel of John, it is clear from the Synoptic Gospels that He has instituted the celebration of the new covenant meal. Judas has been identified as the betrayer and has left the group to do his evil deed. Jesus begins to teach His disciples. His subject is discipleship.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

March 2, 2014 | Pastor John Bayles | The Fifth Discourse: The Man of Truth | John 7:14-27

We see again that Jesus is not driven by the terms of the moment or the wishes of people. He is not waiting for a time to teach, but for the time to teach, on His time, God's time. How often have we been subject to speaking or acting because we were driven by a reaction to time or people?

Sunday, February 9, 2014

February 9, 2014 | Rev. Tom Mabie | Freedom in Christ | Galatians 5:13-26

Religion is a person’s attempt to get to God or have a relationship with God. Christianity is not a religion. It a relationship, in which, God takes the initiative and establishes a relationship with us through His Son, Jesus Christ. Before coming into a relationship with God we live selfish, self-centered lives with ourselves at the center of our lives and life as our own god. None of our efforts or hard work put us in right relationship with God. It’s not until the fact that God awakens us to Himself and draws us by his lovingkindness that we experience a right relationship with God through Jesus Christ. However, one of the challenges we face as Christians is that once God has established a relationship with us, we typically and often revert back to doing things in our own effort and strength, trusting in ourselves rather than relying on God. This attempt to walk by our own efforts, in some ways, is the problem that the Churches in Galatia faced.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

February 2, 2014 | Pastor John Bayles | The Bread of Separation and Salvation | Part 2 | John 6:41-60

In this section, Jesus lays out perhaps the most difficult revelation of His ministry. Thus far he has responded to questions from the Jews in Capernaum regarding the bread, the amazing bread that Jesus had miraculously produced by prayer a few days earlier. This bread that came down from heaven, had been a life-changing experience for those who had been there that day, and was continuing to amaze those who had heard about it and were hoping for a repeat performance from this man with the divine connection.

That is all Jesus was to the masses and the Jews in the synagogue in Capernaum - a miracle man with miracle powers. But, to their amazement, Jesus emphasizes not what He can do, but where He came from and Who and What He is. He is the bread that came down from heaven, not given by the power of a man. This is the sign that Jesus used to awaken His audience and serve as a call for belief. The nature of the miracle points only to the miracle of the man Jesus, the Word, the Son of God, the bread of heaven.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

January 26, 2014 | Pastor John Bayles | The Bread of Separation and Salvation | Part 1 | John 6:25-40

What were they all looking for, the people who had heard about a miracle of five loaves and two small fish being multiplied into a feast that fed more than five thousand people? Those who were present were amazed and filled. The disciples of the teacher were amazed and filled. And now those who missed the action were hoping for more. And so they finally found him. How he got to Capernaum without a boat had baffled them all. They came seeking an answer to their question of how he crossed the lake without a boat. He answered by revealing that boats, lakes, bread, and fish were not on His mind.