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Striving Side by Side

As Paul speaks of the bold advance of the gospel in this passage, he says something that has brought great conviction in accordance with the sermon and this video from Sunday. In verse 27 he writes, “Only let your manner of life be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel,” (ESV, emphasis mine). 

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Giving to God what is Marginal

God’s rebuke of his priests in Malachi offers a sobering picture of the reality of marginal giving for the Church today.  To understand this, we must fully understand the context of this heavy passage in light of the entire biblical narrative.  In his indictment, God accuses the Priests of “offering polluted food upon my altar” when they “offer blind animals in sacrifice…and those that are lame or sick” (Mal 1:7, 8).  Now at first glance we may simply believe that God chastises his priests for the mere fact that they have broken his law, which indeed they had (see Lev 22:17-25; Deut 15:21; 17:1).  True, the priests were guilty of offering what was easy instead of what was commanded; however, the context and very purpose of the sacrificial system in which the priests participated forbids us to stop at that interpretive level.

Prayer for Hungary Team

Please be in prayer for our student ministry Hungary mission team as we travel and minister over the next 12 days. The members of the team are… Jason Engle Jerry Clayton Marjorie Clayton Catherine Wilson Caitlin Rauscher Hannah Reynolds Sarah-Marie Rosin Charity Sharpe Please pray especially for Hannah tonight and tomorrow as there is a chance she will not be able to join us on the trip. We will be asking for special favor from the airline tomorrow at the airport because of the circumstance. We will be leading English language camps for 5 days in Szarvas, which is the town in which Zsolti leaves and ministers. I (Jason) will hve the opportunity to preach both at Zsolti’s house church in Szarvas, as well as in the church he pastors in Condros on Sunday, the 28th. Like last time, there is a good chance that the Szarvas service will be televised and broadcasted to the whole city. Please pray that

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IMB Commissioning Service

I had the amazing opportunity last week to attend my first International Mission Board commissioning service. Some very dear friends of ours from Westwood are preparing to serve an unreached people group in central asia beginning later this year. They were commissioned, and as an extra surprised, a good friend of ours from college was commissioned as well. Ironically, she will be serving just 2 hours away from our friends at Westwood! Anyway, the service was overwhelming to me, to say the least. It was incredible just to once again see how active God is in calling ordinary vessels to fulfill the commission He gave us to go and make disciples of all nations. A couple aspects of the service stuck out the most… 1. A vast majority of those who were commissioned, as they shared brief testimonies of their calling, spoke of being called to career missions while in a foreign land on a short-term mission trip. This should

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Pray for Canada

Ever since hearing about the spiritual situation in Canada, and especially French speaking Canada, I have been greatly burdened. I have prayed since that time that God would somehow open up an opportunity for our student ministry to partner with someone who is already participating in ministry there. Well, I really believe that God may have just answered that prayer. Before I explain, permit me to share some of the statistics that I have come to know about Canada and its spirituality (or lack thereof). While 13.7% of English Canada is evangelical, only 0.54% of French Canada is evangelical. Of the French Canadian people, in a survey done in 2001, a little over 83% claimed to be Catholic; but, even a very small percentage of them claimed to attend services regularly. According to “Outreach Canada,” there are more than 850 cities and identifiable communities in the province of Quebec that do not have a single evangelical church! I recall hearing

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