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Thursday, May 19, 2016

Scripture & Questions for Sunday (5/22/16)

Don't forget the potluck lunch Sunday after church. We will be celebrating our graduate Carli Jackowski and the baptism of Saydee Elizabeth and Jackson Layne Meadow. Please bring a dish to share.

Scripture for Sunday
2 Cor. 1:1-11 (KJV)  
Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, unto the church of God which is at Corinth, with all the saints which are in all Achaia: [2] Grace be to you and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. [3] Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; [4] Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. [5] For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ. [6] And whether we be afflicted, it is for your consolation and salvation, which is effectual in the enduring of the same sufferings which we also suffer: or whether we be comforted, it is for your consolation and salvation. [7] And our hope of you is stedfast, knowing, that as ye are partakers of the sufferings, so shall ye be also of the consolation. [8] For we would not, brethren, have you ignorant of our trouble which came to us in Asia, that we were pressed out of measure, above strength, insomuch that we despaired even of life: [9] But we had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raiseth the dead: [10] Who delivered us from so great a death, and doth deliver: in whom we trust that he will yet deliver us; [11] Ye also helping together by prayer for us, that for the gift bestowed upon us by the means of many persons thanks may be given by many on our behalf. 

Questions for Reflection
1. How do you normally react to hardship or suffering?
2. How did Paul describe God? (1:3)
3. Why do you think Paul began his letter by praising God? (1:3)
4. What does God do when we are troubled? (1:4)
5. How does God involve Himself in our troubles? (1:4-5)
6. How does God want us to help one another in difficult circumstances?
7. Who do you know who is experiencing hardship?
8. How can you help other Christians who are suffering?

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Scripture & Questions for Sunday (5/15/16)

Sunday we celebrate the birth of the Christian church, Pentecost, wear red to celebrate. 
 For Christians, Pentecost is a holiday on which we commemorate the coming of the Holy Spirit on the early followers of Jesus. Before the events of the first Pentecost, which came a few weeks, 50 days, after Jesus’ death and resurrection, there were followers of Jesus, but no movement that could be meaningfully called “the church.” Thus, from an historical point of view, Pentecost is the day on which the church was started. This is also true from a spiritual perspective, since the Spirit brings the church into existence and enlivens it. Thus Pentecost is the church’s birthday.

Scripture
Acts 2:1-21 (ESV)  
When the day of Pentecost arrived, they were all together in one place.  [2] And suddenly there came from heaven a sound like a mighty rushing wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting.  [3] And divided tongues as of fire appeared to them and rested on each one of them.  [4] And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance. [5] Now there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men from every nation under heaven.  [6] And at this sound the multitude came together, and they were bewildered, because each one was hearing them speak in his own language.  [7] And they were amazed and astonished, saying, "Are not all these who are speaking Galileans?  [8] And how is it that we hear, each of us in his own native language?  [9] Parthians and Medes and Elamites and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia,  [10] Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome,  [11] both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabians—we hear them telling in our own tongues the mighty works of God."  [12] And all were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, "What does this mean?"  [13] But others mocking said, "They are filled with new wine." [14] But Peter, standing with the eleven, lifted up his voice and addressed them, "Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and give ear to my words.  [15] For these men are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day.  [16] But this is what was uttered through the prophet Joel: 
    [17] " 'And in the last days it shall be, God declares,
    that I will pour out my Spirit on all flesh,
        and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy,
    and your young men shall see visions,
        and your old men shall dream dreams;
    [18] even on my male servants and female servants
        in those days I will pour out my Spirit, and they shall prophesy.
    [19] And I will show wonders in the heavens above
        and signs on the earth below,
        blood, and fire, and vapor of smoke;
    [20] the sun shall be turned to darkness
        and the moon to blood,
         before the day of the Lord comes, the great and magnificent day.
    [21] And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.'

Questions for Reflection
1. What was celebrated on the day of Pentecost? (2:1)
2. What group of people was gathered together? (2:1)
3. Where did a violent wind come from? (2:2)
4. What did the followers of Christ hear and see? (2:2-3)
5. What was the importance of the wind and fire? (2:2-4)
6. If you saw the coming of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, how do you think you would have responded? Why?
7. Why is the coming of the Spirit associated with wind, fire, and different languages?
8. What does it mean to be filled with the Holy Spirit?
9. How does God use us to witness to others?

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Scripture & Questions for Sunday (5/8/16)

Scripture for Sunday 
1 Cor. 15:1-11 (ESV)  
Now I would remind you, brothers, of the gospel I preached to you, which you received, in which you stand, [2] and by which you are being saved, if you hold fast to the word I preached to you— unless you believed in vain. [3] For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the Scriptures, [4] that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the Scriptures, [5] and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. [6] Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have fallen asleep. [7] Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. [8] Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me. [9] For I am the least of the apostles, unworthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. [10] But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace toward me was not in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them, though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me. [11] Whether then it was I or they, so we preach and so you believed. 

Questions for Reflection
1. How do people pass on their beliefs and traditions to others?
2. What do you think is important to pass on from one generation to the next?
3. What do you want others to remember about you?
4. Why did Paul pass on what he had received? (15:3)
5. How did Christ’s life fulfill the Scriptures? (15:3)
6. What are the key points of the gospel? (15:3-8)
7. What has God’s grace accomplished in you?
8. How does Christ appear or make Himself known to us today?

Friday, April 22, 2016

Scripture for Sunday (4/24/16)

Jim Barker will be having outpatient gallbladder surgery Wednesday morning (4/27/16) at 8:45 in Fredericksburg.

Scripture for Sunday
Acts 18:1-11 (ESV)  
After this Paul left Athens and went to Corinth. [2] And he found a Jew named Aquila, a native of Pontus, recently come from Italy with his wife Priscilla, because Claudius had commanded all the Jews to leave Rome. And he went to see them, [3] and because he was of the same trade he stayed with them and worked, for they were tentmakers by trade. [4] And he reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath, and tried to persuade Jews and Greeks. 
[5] When Silas and Timothy arrived from Macedonia, Paul was occupied with the word, testifying to the Jews that the Christ was Jesus. [6] And when they opposed and reviled him, he shook out his garments and said to them, "Your blood be on your own heads! I am innocent. From now on I will go to the Gentiles." [7] And he left there and went to the house of a man named Titius Justus, a worshiper of God. His house was next door to the synagogue. [8] Crispus, the ruler of the synagogue, believed in the Lord, together with his entire household. And many of the Corinthians hearing Paul believed and were baptized. [9] And the Lord said to Paul one night in a vision, "Do not be afraid, but go on speaking and do not be silent, [10] for I am with you, and no one will attack you to harm you, for I have many in this city who are my people." [11] And he stayed a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them. 

Acts 18:18-23 (ESV)  
After this, Paul stayed many days longer and then took leave of the brothers and set sail for Syria, and with him Priscilla and Aquila. At Cenchreae he had cut his hair, for he was under a vow. [19] And they came to Ephesus, and he left them there, but he himself went into the synagogue and reasoned with the Jews. [20] When they asked him to stay for a longer period, he declined. [21] But on taking leave of them he said, "I will return to you if God wills," and he set sail from Ephesus. 
[22] When he had landed at Caesarea, he went up and greeted the church, and then went down to Antioch. [23] After spending some time there, he departed and went from one place to the next through the region of Galatia and Phrygia, strengthening all the disciples. 

Friday, April 15, 2016

April 2016 Newsletter

Click on the link to open this month's newsletter.

April 2016 Newsletter

Have a great day!
Carmen

Scripture for Sunday (4/17/16)

Scripture for Sunday        
Acts 8:26-40
Now an angel of the Lord said to Philip, "Rise and go toward the south to the road that goes down from Jerusalem to Gaza." This is a desert place. [27] And he rose and went. And there was an Ethiopian, a eunuch, a court official of Candace, queen of the Ethiopians, who was in charge of all her treasure. He had come to Jerusalem to worship [28] and was returning, seated in his chariot, and he was reading the prophet Isaiah.  [29] And the Spirit said to Philip, "Go over and join this chariot." [30] So Philip ran to him and heard him reading Isaiah the prophet and asked, "Do you understand what you are reading?" [31] And he said, "How can I, unless someone guides me?" And he invited Philip to come up and sit with him. [32] Now the passage of the Scripture that he was reading was this: "Like a sheep he was led to the slaughter and like a lamb before its shearer is silent, so he opens not his mouth. [33] In his humiliation justice was denied him. Who can describe his generation? For his life is taken away from the earth." [34] And the eunuch said to Philip, "About whom, I ask you, does the prophet say this, about himself or about someone else?" [35] Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning with this Scripture he told him the good news about Jesus. [36] And as they were going along the road they came to some water, and the eunuch said, "See, here is water! What prevents me from being baptized?" [38] And he commanded the chariot to stop, and they both went down into the water, Philip and the eunuch, and he baptized him. [39] And when they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord carried Philip away, and the eunuch saw him no more, and went on his way rejoicing. [40] But Philip found himself at Azotus, and as he passed through he preached the gospel to all the towns until he came to Caesarea. 

Questions for Reflection
1. What reading material do you find difficult to understand?
2. What was the eunuch’s problem? (8:28-34)
3. What did the Holy Spirit tell Philip to do? (8:29)
4. How did Philip present the good news about Jesus? (8:35)
5. What did the eunuch do after he believed in Jesus? (8:36-38)
6. How does God use us to take the message of Christ to others?
7. What passages of Scripture are difficult for you to understand?
8. What fears prevent us from telling others about Christ?

Friday, April 1, 2016

Scripture & Questions for Sunday (4/3/16)

Men's breakfast tomorrow morning at Kelly Kothmann's. Breakfast will be served at 8 but come early for fellowship and coffee.

Scripture        
Acts 1:1-12  
In the first book, O Theophilus, I have dealt with all that Jesus began to do and teach, 2 until the day when he was taken up, after he had given commands through the Holy Spirit to the apostles whom he had chosen. 3 To them he presented himself alive after his suffering by many proofs, appearing to them during forty days and speaking about the kingdom of God. 4 And while staying with them he ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, "you heard from me; 5 for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with1 the Holy Spirit not many days from now." 6 So when they had come together, they asked him, "Lord, will you at this time restore the kingdom to Israel?" 7 He said to them, "It is not for you to know times or seasons that the Father has fixed by his own authority. 8 But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth." 9 And when he had said these things, as they were looking on, he was lifted up, and a cloud took him out of their sight. 10 And while they were gazing into heaven as he went, behold, two men stood by them in white robes, 11 and said, "Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into heaven? This Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will come in the same way as you saw him go into heaven." 12 Then they returned to Jerusalem from the mount called Olivet, which is near Jerusalem, a Sabbath day's journey away. 

Questions for Reflection
1. After His resurrection, how did Jesus spend His time with the apostles? (1:3-5)
2. What specific commands did Jesus give the apostles? (1:4)
3. What gift did Jesus promise to the apostles? (1:4-5)
4. What did the apostles misunderstand? (1:6)
5. What is the importance of Jesus’ final promise and command to you?
6. When is a time you wanted to move on from a location, job, or difficult relationship but were held back by God’s leading?
7. How do we know when the Holy Spirit is at work in our lives?
8. What specific means (abilities, opportunities, relationships) has God given you to carry out the task of being His witness?