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Eternal God, Eternal Salvation

James 1:17-18 says:

"Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.  Of his own will he brought us forth by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures."

I have read that passage and quoted that passage many times in my life, but reading it this week, I was reminded afresh of the absolutely awesome truth represented by the words "with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change".  How incredible that our Father in heaven has NEVER changed!?!  Humans have pithy sayings about how much we want, need, or can't avoid change.

"Change is here to stay", "Hope and Change", "Change we can believe in", "The more things change, the more they stay the same", "Keep the change, ya filthy animal"...oh wait...

Anyway, we change constantly in response to our changing circumstances, and yet God never changes.  He never goes back on a promise.  His past "performance" is truly a perfect measure of his future propensities, because He doesn't change. 

Have you been rescued out of your darkness and brought into His light?  Then you know He's a loving, merciful, gracious Father.  Have you been provided for such that you are alive and breathing today? Then you know God is Provider.  You see, God never changes.  What He was, he always will be. 

And most exciting for us that our standing before Him will never change.  He will never lose his hold on us, his grip on us never weakens or tires.  He will welcome us for eternal communion with Him one day, and there is nothing that can take that away from us.  And from that day forward, we get to join him in no longer being subject to change, and get to worship Him along with all the saints and angels for all eternity, joining in with the songs of worship and adoration that have been going on since creation.  

Each Sunday is an opportunity to remember that God is never changing, our salvation is sure because He is trustworthy, and our worship of Him will one day be uninterrupted because He is worthy of unending worship!  What a privilege.  Let's eagerly anticipate that small taste of things to come and sing to the Lord this Sunday, freshly amazed at his unchanging character and unending grace.

Here are the songs and Scriptures that will make up our service this week.

Call to Worship - James 1:17-18
Blessed Be Your Name
Be Enthroned
Reading: Apostles' Creed
This I Believe
O Lord, My Rock and My Redeemer
The Solid Rock
Sermon from Colossians 4
 
 

 

 

Posted by Tim Payne with

I Was Just Like Them

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photo copyright: soo hee kim/shutterstock
 
As we were planning through this Sunday’s order of worship, I was thinking on the words of Colossians 4:5-6 and Paul’s commands concerning Christian conduct towards outsiders. I was struck by the contrast between the new outlook that Gospel transformation ought to bring to those of us who are in Christ, and my personal drift towards pride regarding those outside the Church.
 
Romans 5:8 tells me that it was in the midst of my joyful rebellion against God that He saved me. Yet I find myself tempted to believe God chose me, not for His glory alone, but for something good He saw in me. Consequently, I build a barrier between myself and those who have not yet trusted in Christ. I approach them as lower than me, as ones who have yet to produce that which brought me favor with God. This is a distortion of the gospel of Christ, a sin that I must repent of daily.
 
An antidote that I have found for this pattern of pride is simply to stop and think on the reality of the cross. I had to be saved. I was not good enough. I was just like them. Yet God, in His perfect and holy sovereignty, chose me and saved me for His glory and purpose in Christ Jesus our Lord (Romans 9:11; Eph. 2:1-9; 2 Tim. 1:9).

Do you ever struggle with this sort of pride towards others? My guess is that you have. We all will sooner or later. We must remember this: I brought nothing to the table. You brought nothing to the table. Yet we find ourselves seated at the table of the Lord. What an amazing thing God has done!
 
As we continue walking through Colossians 4 this Sunday, it is my hope that we will celebrate God both as our faithful fortress and as the Holy One who made us a friend when we were hell-bent on rebellion. This is the starting point for reaching out to those in need of Christ. To this end, these scriptures and songs will help to focus our hearts on minds on these
things.
 
Call to worship -  Psalm 32:1-2
A Mighty Fortress
Always
Scripture Reading - Romans 5:8
Look and See
Boldly I Approach
Grace and Peace
Sermon from Colossians 4
 
Here's a Spotify playlist of the songs we'll be singing.

 

Posted by Jared Howell with

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