Sunday, December 18, 2011

December 18, 2011 | John Bayles | Go Into All the World: The Tabernacle of God and Man (1 John 1:1-14)

The Incarnation of Christ is a critical subject for us to understand. Though this falls into the category of understanding what is ultimately incomprehensible, the Bible does overwhelmingly and consistently teach the Trinity of God and the incarnation of the Son of God and the man Jesus. In an attempt to be understandable, the risk is present to confuse or mislead. But this dynamic does not excuse us as Bible interpreters from exploring this mysterious relationship between the human (the carnal) and the divine (the Son of God) who "Tabernacled" together in order that the designs of the latter might be accomplished and the weaknesses of the former might be overcome.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

December 11, 2011 | John Bayles | Go Into All The World: A Race To Run (Hebrews 12:1-3)

How many of us participated in formal athletics at one time or other. Most of the time this brings fond memories of days gone by when we were younger, fitter, and willing to sacrifice most anything to the sport we loved to play. Can you still fit into that team uniform today? Is that passion matched by conditions still at the same peak level? If the answer is no to these questions, then we have a life example of what the author of Hebrews is driving at with his hearers and us today.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

December 4, 2011 | S. Molla | Digging For Treasure

Most Christians are fairly confident in giving a reason for their faith and are able to cite key passages of the Bible. However, many are caught off guard when the Bible itself is attacked, undermining the very source of their arguments.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

November 27, 2011 | John Bayles | Go Into All The World: Mandates of Kingdom Citizenship - Part 2 (Matthew 5:13-43)

This sermon is an expansion of the principle of imperative mandates flowing from the indicative action of Christ at the cross. But mandates they are. In this sermon the mandates of Kingdom citizenship are examined from Matthew 5:13 ff. The sermon is built upon the Reformed principal: "We are saved by grace alone, but not a grace that is alone." As the presentation stresses, we must continually be aware that we are living a reflective faith and taking initiative in our Christian witness not because we must, but because we can.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

November 20, 2011 | Go Into All The World: Mandates of Kingdom Citizenship - Part 1 (Matthew 5:13-43)

There are statements in the scriptures that state established, unchangeable, indicative facts. For example, Jesus said, "All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me." The truth of the phrase is not ongoing, nor contingent upon further actions – it is an indicative statement. There are many of these types of statements in the scriptures, and many of them have to do with the finished work of Jesus Christ at the cross. Others have to do with God's view of us and our status: "You are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus." These are complete, finished realities – they are indicative statements.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

November 13, 2011 | John Bayles | Go Into All The World: Napkins and Placemats - Part 2 (Romans 10:1-17)

Drawing upon the first lesson, during this sermon there will be a practical presentation of the Gospel. So often we think of the Gospel being shared in church or at some evangelistic meeting. This should not be the major case. During the one-on-one time we spend with established or developing relationships over a meal or casual conversation, we need to be ready to share a simple, yet comprehensive presentation of the Gospel. The audio quality is not of the best quality (see note below), but the message is worth the effort to master. May you find the words of Jesus to be a reality in your life this week: "You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit - fruit that will last" (John 15:16).

Sunday, November 6, 2011

November 6, 2011 | John Bayles | Go Into All the World: Napkins and Placemats - Part 1 (Romans 10:1-17)

In this sermon, we will make a close examination of the Substance of the Gospel and then the Spread of the Gospel. The Apostle Paul is not acting independently from the Lord, as this text so dramatically reveals. Far from a personal passion that weighted the mind and actions of one man, the mandate to share the Gospel is the core job description of each and every Christian from the time Jesus gave it to the present day.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

October 30, 2011 | Reformation Sunday | John Bayles | John Wycliffe: The Morning Star of the Reformation

Though he was not counted among the reformers of the 1500's, John Wycliffe stands out as a forerunner of Luther and the Protestant Reformation. His boldness of thought, speech and writing continued a brilliant pattern of seeking to purify and reform the Roman Catholic Church. His crime was Christ. The upheaval of his desire to present the Bible in English for the most common of people and the most learned was the desire and act which propelled him to criticism, and his followers to martyr's deaths. On this Reformation Sunday it is our delight to focus upon John Wycliffe, this great man of God – his life, his work, and his legacy.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

October 23, 2011 | Jerry Banks | The Forgotten Minister of the Word of God (Colossians 1:3-12, Isaiah 40:10-26)

Often the best blessings we possess are ones which are easiest to overlook. In the first chapter of the Book of Colossians, the Apostle Paul gives an amazing insight into the grace of God in redemption. While doing so, he gives a casual salute to the pastor/teacher that he left in the church in Colossia who faithfully preached the message of grace that Paul had preached to him. Paul states: "You learned it from Epaphras, our dear fellow servant" (Col.1:7). In Philippians 1:23, Paul identifies Epaphras as "a fellow prisoner" and later in Collossians 4:12 Paul calls him, "one of you." Other than these references he is a forgotten man.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

October 16, 2011 | John Bayles | Go Into All The World: Jesus Is Praying (John 17:1-26)

The last prayer of Jesus on earth contains a wellspring of desire and projection, for his disciples and for us. In this third sermon in the series, "Go Into All The World", we are taken into a most intimate moment – the desire and prayer of the Lord for those who would take the gospel to the four winds of the earth. Far from a mere hope, Jesus prays with an absolute resolve. Today we will hear more than twenty points of assurance and hope from the lips of the Lord as he prays to the Father on our behalf.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

October 9, 2011 | W.A. Young | Moses and the People of God (1 Corinthians 10:11)

Moses was one of three men God used to initiate a covenant that was purposed to unfold the revelation of God. Those "covenants"  and their intent would eventually express themselves in the fulfillment found in the Person of Jesus Christ. During their time in Egypt, God was forming them as His people destined to show the nations who God was. While in Egypt, they were being taught a message and how to be the messenger. What God had for them could only be achieved against the background of a demon-driven culture like Egypt.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

October 2, 2011 | John Bayles | Go Into All The World: Will The Message Die? (Matthew 28:16-20)

The virgin birth is almost fifty years past. The wisdom displayed by a young twelve year old boy among the leading scribes of his day is remembered by a few. The great preacher made his mark, gathered his flock, but now had gone the way of the martyr: tried, crucified, dead, and buried. The great hope was gone – even those who believed most fervently were crushed, afraid, and hiding. Who would die next? And for what?

Sunday, September 25, 2011

September 25, 2011 | John Bayles | Go Into All The World: An Obedient Passion (2 Corinthians 5:14-6:1)

In a time of trial and suffering, the Apostle Paul writes to the Church in Corinth for a third time. In his first two letters, he invested a great deal of time seeking to draw back these new Christians from the brink of the disaster of trying to live as if all the benefits of the resurrection of the Lord had already taken place. The result of this over-realized eschatology (or view of the end) had plummeted the church into unhealthy and ungodly practices of denying the propriety of the marriage covenant and engaging in disruptive and disturbing worship practices more identified with pagans. They had become tangled up in a degrading of marriage, a hyper indulgent view of sexuality, the wholesale speaking in tongues in the guise of being "like the angels", and dishonoring the communion table by drunkenness and gluttony.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

September 18, 2011 | John Bayles | The End Is Near (Malachi 4:4-6)

In this last sermon in the series, Malachi leaves the tact of pressing disputes against Israel and turns to the making of two amazing announcements. The first is that Israel must not lose her tether to the historic law of God. Identity and calling were directly and indelibly tied to the Law of Moses and the historic epiphany through which the ten commandments came from Mt. Sinai. To lose their relationship to the law would be to lose their relationship to God Himself.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

September 11, 2011 | John Bayles | The Sixth Dispute: A Lawless People (Malachi 3:13-4:4)

In this last dispute Malachi returns to an issue that stems from the continued degrading of the Nation of Israel with Yahweh. In this instance they have ceased to function as the people of the covenant. They have drifted from the rule of law and developed a standard of their own. Injustice and lawlessness is the result. Because the law is a direct reflection of His nature and character, a rejection of it is a rejection of God himself. This the core of the dispute: they have taken unto themselves a law that is self-promoting arrogance, a redefinition of right and wrong, and even holding this standard as better than the Mosaic revelation.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

September 4, 2011 | John Bayles | The Fifth Dispute: Return To Me! (Malachi 3:6-12)

Imagine the living God, the Eternal One, the Holy One, the One who created and sustains the universe, the loving, redeeming, and restoring Almighty who created man and draws him into personal fellowship. If we have difficulty appreciating this sentence, then we may very well have some of the same challenges that Malachi found in the nation of Israel. They had lost the understanding of the nature of their God and they had forgotten that He was both loving and just. They had come to think that God was an idea shaped by their personal liking and that He would not hold them responsible to His holy standards.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

August 21, 2011 | John Bayles | The Fourth Dispute: The Weariness of Injustice (Malachi 2:17-3:6)

Weariness can be an erosive force. It's power is in delay. As the Proverbs state: "Hope deferred makes the heart sick." Waiting for the full restoration of their nation, the people had lost touch with the God who formed them, built them, disciplined and deported them, and finally re-formed them. Sadly, after only a short period of time they had lost touch with their God and lost hope in their historic identity. In this malaise, Israel established their own system of morality and from it their own brand of justice.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

August 14, 2011 | John Bayles | The Third Dispute: The Faithless People (Malachi 2:10-16)

Malachi moves from the priests to the people in this third dispute. What is the core purpose of humanity? What did God create man to be and do? If these questions can be answered, then it will lead to an understanding of why God had gone to such an extent to preserve his fallen progeny. We see man's mandate is an understanding of Genesis 1:26, when God stated, "Let us make man to be our image bearer." Far from simply being like God or looking like God, man was to be the reflector of God's communicable attributes: love, goodness, truthfulness, and faithfulness.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

August 7, 2011 | John Bayles | The Second Dispute: The Fear and Honor of His Name (Malachi 1:6-2:9)

Though God had demonstrated his love and care for Israel over their entire existence, He, in love had taken them into exile. For seventy years they were disciplined, and, in a remarkable move, God brought them back into their own land, rebuilt their temple, reconstructed their walls and reengaged their temple sacrificial system. This is an incredible and exclusive demonstration of an historic people group becoming literally extinct and then reemerging as a nation state. Who would believe that they would ever forget this mercy or cease to give thanks and honor to the One who brought them through this long pilgrimage? Obviously, Israel had forgotten their own history, and lost their thanks and honor for Yahweh in a few short years.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

July 31, 2011 | John Bayles | The First Dispute: God's Love For His People (Malachi 1:1-5)

"How have you loved us?" The narrowness, the foolishness, the sinfulness of this statement by the nation of Israel. This opening dispute by God's messenger with His holy people is filled with a deep forgetfulness of God's essential nature and His expressed character - God is love! Malachi is filled with a burden ( the oracle) of being the instrument of correction to the nation. They have lost their way, they have sinned, but mostly they have forgotten what God's choice of them has made them to be. They must be reminded as we too must be reminded that they were not chosen because they were worthy of love, but God's choice of them made them unique in the eyes of God and one another. This is a deep lesson to remember. If God never does a single thing for us again, we would already be recipients of a grace that is beyond anything we could ask or imagine. Let us pray that we will continually be people of thanks and praise to the one who first loved us.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

July 24, 2011 | John Bayles | The Longsuffering of God (Malachi 1:1)

To understand what a text of scripture means to us today, we must first understand what it meant to its original hearers. As we begin in our study of the Book of Malachi, historical and literary context are the subject. Some important questions need to be answered: who was Malachi, when did he prophecy to Israel, what was the condition of his audience, and what is the substance of his message? The desire to know what the scriptures mean to us here and now are highly dependent on what they meant to them, then and there. In order to find the riches of the book of Malachi, these questions will be addressed. May the Holy Spirit lead us into truth as we take up the task.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

July 17, 2011 | John Bayles | The Glorious Gospel (Romans 16:25-27)

In this final submission to his epistle, Paul raises his voice in praise of the Gospel that he has so profoundly revealed in the entire Book of Romans. In summary of his treatise, the apostle declares in this three phrase doxology the full extent and nature of the Gospel. This last sermon from the Book of Romans highlights how the preaching of the Gospel not only remains today the most potent, dynamic, and interpretive message of all of history, but continues to be the sword of truth that forges the advance of the Kingdom of God until the return of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

July 10, 2011 | John Bayles | Ordinary People Advancing God's Kingdom (Romans 16:20-24)

The Kingdom of God was not begun by superhuman people, but by people used by our supernatural Savior. In today's text, Paul draws back the historical curtain and gives us a glimpse into the lives of his ministry team. They are not unlike many of us. The key is willingness to be used and obedience to God's calling. When God takes our lives into his will, we see people who change the world.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

July 3, 2011 | John Bayles | Forewarning Against The No-Count Dividers (Romans 16:17-20)

Mixed in with the salute from the New Covenant Divines is a strong warning of the intentions of the No-Count Dividers living in Rome who sought to subvert the message of the Gospel. As Paul brings his epistle to a close, it is important to stress how significant keeping a sharp focus on the classical orthodoxy of Paul's message was to this early expression of the body of Christ. To us today, let us be encouraged to hold the line of orthodoxy and contend for the unchanging truths of God's Word.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

June 26, 2011 | John Bayles | Farewell From The New Covenant Divines (Romans 16:1-16)

In an amazing listing, the Apostle Paul sends a farewell greeting from his co-laborers in the Gospel. Of note among this catalogue are the several women listed as "fellow-workers" and "fellow-apostles." This sermon highlights the practical application of the New Covenant view of women in the home and the church founded in the radical viewpoint of the New Covenant: "You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise" (Gal.3:26-29).

Sunday, June 19, 2011

June 19, 2011 | Joe Porter | Father's Day

Why is the church in America considered weak and without the power of secure relationships. Today Pastor Porter draws from the lives of Moses, Joshua, Elijah and Elisha to highlight the significance of the spiritual fathers, so rare, but yet so needed in the church today. Where are the fathers and the sons in God's kingdom today? Much is at stake, but a great opportunity also exists today for change, and with loyalty and faithfulness as our heartcry it is our hope that revival fires will burn again in the church. May God raise up fathers and sons in His kingdom for His glory!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

June 12, 2011 | John Bayles | I Hope to Visit You (Romans 15:23-33)

As the Apostle Paul comes to the close of his letter to the Romans he projects a personal desire regarding going to Spain and on the way visiting Rome. However, he must first go to Jerusalem. Later we know he wrote to Timothy, his young son in the Lord, "I have finished the race..." However, we also know he likely never went to Spain, though he felt it was a critical part completing the work to which the Lord had called him. Why? Because he was arrested in Jerusalem before he could fulfill this mission. What is there for us to see today? We all deal with the struggles we find in life's changes. How often have we become discouraged with the disappointment of not being able to do what we thought God Himself wanted us to do - for Him. There are keys in this text which will give positive answers to life's disappointments.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

June 5, 2011 | S. Molla | The Kinsman Redeemer (Book of Ruth)

The Book of Ruth is filled with spiritual truth from both the Old Testament and the New. Central to the very survival of the young Moabite woman was the presence of the Law of Moses, which provided the means of Ruth's survival from starvation, being chosen for marriage, and entering into a redemptive life relationship. You will find this survey to be factually interesting and have a deep personal spiritual application to your life.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

May 29, 2011 | John Mazariegos | It's Mixed-Bag Folk That Change The World (Matthew 28:16-20)

"Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. When they saw Him, they worshiped Him; but some doubted" (Matthew 28:16,17).

This is one of the most amazing texts in the Bible. After all that Jesus did and said, even after His resurrection, some of those who followed Him for three years and later would change the world, doubted Him.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Stories of Death and Life

Last evening John Mazariegos, missionary to San Luis Potosi, Mexico spoke at the Maryland Correctional Training Center in Hagerstown. The room was filled with inmates enthusiastic about the moving worship service and eager to hear the Word of God, as Johnny spoke:

"Many of you have stories floating around in your minds tonight. Stories of death that have been told to you from your childhood. Stories that have shaped your view of the world and your view of yourselves. Many of these stores are lies from hell. You have believed them to such a deep level that they have brought you to believe that you have no dignity, no goodness, nothing of value. I believe that God is going to crush these stores of death tonight and speak a new story into your minds."

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

This Wednesday Night. 7 PM. The Relevancy of Revelation.

Last Saturday's failed prediction of the end of the world is yet another evidence that many current views of end times events need to be radically adjusted. In order to properly interpret the signs of the times, we must give special attention to the Bible, through which these subjects are revealed. This course takes much of the sensationalism out of end times studies, and inserts sound biblical interpretation in its place. Subjects include: how to interpret prophetic literature such as Matthew 24, and a review of the historical context of the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD and how this impacts our current views of biblical prophecy. Don't be tossed around by every wind of teaching as Ephesians 4:12 states, but come and learn the reliable and reasonable truth about biblical prophecy.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Tuesday Morning Bible Study. 11 AM.

Acts 10:47 ff.

"Can anyone keep these people from being baptized with water?" Peter has observed in principle the magnificent revelation that the Gospel may be preached to the Gentiles. Now we will see in practice Peter himself being the first orator to them. This shift in emphasis literally changed the course of Christianity from being a regional Jewish sect to a force that expanded on to the world stage. And already converted was a Pharisee named Saul who would carry this revelation of God's grace to the Gentiles to the whole Roman world.

Sunday, May 22, 2011

May 22, 2011 | John Bayles | Living in the Calling of the Master (Romans 15:14-22)

We may wonder what compelled the early messengers of the Christian Gospel. If it was their personal ambition to build a name for themselves or amass personal wealth, very likely the message of the Gospel would have ended when they died. Paul outlines again in today's text that his desire to proclaim the Gospel is deeply rooted in his calling to fulfill his Master's command. Amazingly, we as 21st century Christians have this same foundation for our lives. Will we proclaim the Gospel with the same determination as the One who first gave it to us?

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Pilgrimage of a Spirit-Filled, Reformed Christian

By Pastor John L. Bayles, M.Div.

All of my life I have had a Christian influence. Before I could walk, my parents carried me to church. At the age of seven, I made a public dedication of my belief in Christ and His work for me at Calvary. And, in the Southern Baptist way, I was baptized the very night I made this profession of faith. Baptist life was generous, transferring a knowledge of God and His Word to me from this young age. Sunday School, Training Union, Royal Ambassadors and myriad retreats, camps, visitation nights, and revivals all made up my religious training. During the Valentine’s Day banquet, I even wore the “king’s” crown for highest percentage of Christian duty according to the Six Point Record System several years running.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

This Wednesday: Olivet Discourse!

How too few Christians have even a slight understanding of what took place in Jerusalem in AD 70. This event however had a major impact on both the Jewish and the Christian faiths. This video series and live discussion bring us into a view of biblical prophecy and an end times orientation that adjust what we have had taught to us about this subject in the past and how it has a major bearing on how we view important issues such as personal calling and evangelism today.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

May 15, 2011 | John Bayles | The Reflective Faith (Romans 15:7-13)

The Christian faith is not what we each individually shape it into by our opinions - the Christian faith has its own message to tell. One of the the misconceptions is that if we stop or begin certain behavior that is expressed to be sin, then we are Christians. The problem with this idea is that it denies something basic to Christian teaching - you cannot stop or start behavior that produces any level of merit before a holy and just God. So what is the resolution? The apostle Paul outlines the means to present ourselves to God. It is by living a reflective life.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Remembering Mom

In 1974, I was newly married, held a part time job, had very little idea of what to do with my life, and possessed no savings to speak of – so what was my plan?

Buy a brand-new car!

A Volvo too: because they retained their value and were overall really great cars. It seemed like a great idea. So, I went to Dad to share my brilliance. So what did he say? – I think he gave me about nineteen really good reasons why this was a risky idea. He didn’t seem impressed by the value that a Volvo would hold, or the low maintenance and safety features. He reasoned I should save for the car, be content with what I had, you know, be patient.

So after my talk with him, I had one with Mom.