This Sunday, and over the next several Sundays, Pastor L.C. Taylor will be handling the major issue of PMGF.
Down through the years this has become a major problem in the world, but sadly it is the same for so many Christians!
This Sunday, hopefully, we will bring some clarity to the PMGF topic.
Everyone needs to know about this. If this issue was dealt with, then it would solve the world’s problems. If Christians would deal with this issue, then the world would be more willing to deal with theirs.
How have you dealt with PMGF?
What am I talking about?
What is PMGF?
This Sunday, we might be the only church in the entire state of NC that deals with this. I hope not, but you never know. Anyway, you should come and make sure that you have the PMFG issue handled.
Where? Immanuel Baptist Church of Clemmons
When? January 14th at 10:30 AM
But the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day. Proverbs 4:18 KJV
When we faithfully follow the Word of God, we walk in the light. The more we walk with God, the brighter our path shines and the greater our life reflects His glory and grace.
The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined. Isaiah 9:2 KJV
Jesus is the great light that has been seen by the people who walked in the dark. We were all once in the dark. When we truly SEE – and believe in – Jesus, we are supernaturally translated into the Kingdom of His light.
For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. 7 Of the increase of His government and peace There will be no end, Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, To order it and establish it with judgment and justice From that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.
Isaiah 9:6-7 NKJV
The government is on Jesus’ shoulders. We are His body – the government is on OUR shoulders. In other words, Jesus is King over all the earth and His will is what will prevail. Our responsibility is to carry the leadership of our nation. We must pray; we must lead; we must set a godly example and not be afraid to speak the full counsel of God inside the church and outside the church and even to leaders, presidents and kings!
But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: 4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. 5 For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus’ sake. 6 For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. 7 But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. 2 Corinthians 4:3-7 KJV
Because men are blinded by the devil, they have not yet seen or received this glorious Gospel, but for those of us who believe, this light has shined in our hearts. In Genesis, God said, “Let there be Light” and light came forth out of the darkness without sun or moon or stars! This same great light has shined IN our hearts and this light must shine OUT of us as well – the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
We have this great treasure, of this powerful, glorious light, in earthen vessels. God doesn’t need a perfect, golden vessel to shine through – He can shine even through earthen vessels – if the earthen vessels allow the light to shine. When people see that God is doing His work even through an earthen vessel – He gets all the glory. Your earthen vessel can take no credit for what God does through you. On the other hand, don’t ever allow your earthen vessel to limit you to small thinking, believing and doing. Because HE lives in you, you have His unlimited power and ability available through you. Just let Him shine!
Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. Isaiah 60:1 KJV
YOU must rise and shine! God is waiting on YOU! The light is in you – stand up and shine!
Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men. 14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.15 Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. 16 Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. Matthew 5:13-16 KJV
You are the salt of the earth and the light of the world! There is nothing worse than salt that has lost its potency – it’s still salt, but good for nothing. Salt stings an open wound, but it is a perfect preserving agent. The world may be offended by the Gospel, but it is the salty Christians who are holding back the tide of the wicked one. Stay salty! Your good works glorify your Father in heaven!
You can’t hide a light on a hill. God has raised you up and it’s too late to hide – so stand up and shine! You can’t hide a light in the darkness. The darker the place, the brighter your light shines – even if it’s a small light – it can be seen a long way off. Don’t hide your light under a jug – let it do its job and shine brightly on whatever “candlestick” or “lampstand” that God has placed you on. Don’t be ashamed of the Gospel – this Gospel saved your life – boldly shine it to those who walk in darkness.
That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world. Philippians 2:15 KJV
Live godly, so that your light can brightly shine in the midst of this perverse generation!
And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of God did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. Revelation 21:23
Our future is a future lived in the glorious light of the Lamb of God. Because we have this great hope, we continue to allow God to use us and we work to see HIS plans and purposes fulfilled and not our own. Thank God that we walk in the light and we shine the light and His power and glory are manifested through us in order to touch and change the world!
For Christians, if God is central in the New Year’s resolution, it has a better chance for success. God gave human beings free will, and He never oversteps that freedom to make choices. God’s Word certainly has made clear which choices are better than others, but God never forces His people to comply.
Choosing to do the will of God is always a right choice and, of course, has God’s endorsement. God’s favor and blessings should be incentive enough to pursue Godly goals. God’s Word is filled with what is right and good, therefore reading and learning the Bible is a good place to start and a good place to stay.
The Christian’s first priority should be making time or more time to read and study the Word of God. This may necessitate getting up an hour earlier, or maybe less TV time. One will always make time for whatever or whoever is loved. Jesus said, “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matthew 22:37-39)
This is a good place to start for any believer. Goals set in this light would include spending more time in personal devotion to God, Bible reading and time in prayer. This time is usually best first thing in the day, before all the demands and activities of daily life make quiet time with God impossible.
Other resolutions might include memorizing verses of Scripture, perhaps one a day or one a week. Pick positive and encouraging passages, and inspirational promises of God. Prayer time should be purposeful, perhaps with a list of people or situations that need prayer. One might even have a prayer journal, jotting down how and when God answers the prayers.
Financial giving is certainly a solid Biblical principle which includes tithing and special additional offerings for different church needs or perhaps for the support of missions work. The only way to improve on the principle of tithing is to increase the proportion of the amount. It may be that in order to give more, the resolution might include spending less on sodas, or coffees or movie rentals. These kinds of resolutions are blessed decisions. If one has more time than money to offer, perhaps volunteer in the children’s department at church, or make a plan to visit the sick or elderly. Maybe it’s time to restore a damaged relationship with a family member or an old friend.
Personal resolutions might include watching less TV, spending more time with spouse or children, such as playing games or going out to sports events or picnics in the park. Resolutions might include planning dinner parties for friends and neighbors, becoming better organized at home, in the office or garage, or maybe getting additional education on a subject by taking a community college course or online class. Better financial management is an important goal, which could include renegotiating insurance policies, utility expenses, reevaluating food costs and auto usage, and perhaps making a savings plan for a family vacation.
Ecclesiastes 9:10 says, “Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with your might,” and similarly, Colossians 3:23 and 24 state, “And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ.” Loving God first with heart, soul and mind includes and can be expressed in having an enthusiasm and exuberance for many things in life. God’s desire is for His people to live life to the fullest and to flourish, having good health and prosperity, among many other blessings. Resolutions and goals selected with love for God and done thoughtfully in prayer can be life enhancing and enriching.
With so many competing time demands, why should we pause to seek the Lord in prayer? Among the many reasons, here are three essential ones to make time to pray:
Prayer Honors God
It’s said that you can tell the popularity of the church by the number who show up on Sunday morning; you can tell the popularity of the church’s pastor by the number who show up on Sunday night; and you can tell the popularity of Jesus by the number who show up to the prayer meeting.
What has happened to our churches? You call a prayer meeting today and very few people show up. I know of a church of 5,000 in Denver that called a prayer meeting and only five people came.
That’s a far cry from the day a century earlier when the entire city of Denver paused for prayer — “even at the high tide of business.” The Jan. 20, 1905, Denver Post reported: “Seldom has such a remarkable sight been witnessed — an entire great city, in the middle of a busy weekday, bowing before the throne of heaven and asking and receiving the blessing of the King of the Universe.”
Oh, that believers would honor God in prayer and seek the Lord similarly today!
Prayer Teaches Us
We may earnestly desire God’s glory. We may pour our lives into serving others for His sake. Still, we have to admit that, try as we might to avoid doing so, our own agendas taint our prayers. What can we do about these mixed motives?
Let God search you. When we pray for God to cleanse our hearts and our motives as David did in Psalm 139:23-24, it is important to yield the search-and-destroy mission to Him. He will bring wrong motives to our attention and lead us into repentance.
Confess mixed motives. Ignoring them won’t make them go away. While they may always lurk, Jesus invites us to confess them and receive forgiveness and cleansing (1 John 1:9).
Ask God to teach you. As we surrender to His refining hand, we can ask Him to redirect our hearts and and cause pure motives to rise to the surface (as the psalmist did in Psalm 119:36).
Grow in thanksgiving. When we thank Him, we’re not looking for anything from Him. We’re focusing on Him and thanking Him out of a heart that’s full from what He’s given.
Prayer Changes Things
It’s said that Habakkuk means “wrestler,” and the prophet sure did grapple with God. He saw fellow Hebrews worshiping idols and sacrificing their children to foreign gods, and he cried out for justice. But it seemed his prayers weren’t getting through.
The short book of Habakkuk records the “wrestling match,” even when the Lord did answer and it wasn’t what the prophet had prayed for. But by the third chapter, observe and be encouraged in your own prayer life by the prophet’s new view and renewed trust.
Habakkuk stopped looking around and started seeing things from God’s perspective. He resolved to live by faith in light of who God is, what He has done and is doing, and what he has promised to do — not only in the world, but also in his own life.
Are you grappling with God? Let Jesus’ prayer be yours: “not my will, but yours be done” (Luke 22:42). And let Him know you agree that the Father knows best.
Article by Dean Ridings
Please join us December 24th, Christmas Eve @ 6:00 PM for a concert featuring local artist Chad Muncy. During this event, Chad will sing some of the “All-time” favorite Christmas carols and hymns as well as some of the most current Christmas songs.
Christmas Musical, Wednesday evening, December 20 at 7:00 PM by Joel Everett. During this event, Joel will play through every Christmas hymn in the church hymnal as well as take requests.
One of the most explicit Bible verses related to the matter of thanksgiving is 1 Thes. 5:18. This verses says, “In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” This verse commands believers to give thanks to the Lord, not FOR everything, but IN everything! There is a big difference there! Certainly, we ought to be thankful, not just because we are told to be thankful, but because we have much to be thankful for!
However, our thankfulness is a very fickle thing. Often, our thankfulness focuses on things that are physical in nature. We are thankful for our health. We are thankful for our families and our homes. We are thankful for our financial stability. We are thankful for the things we have. Yet, all of these things are subject to change. Think about it, health can break, families can split up and bank accounts can run dry. What do we do then? How does that affect our thankfulness?
We should remain thankful for all the physical blessings we enjoy, and learn to look beyond those changing things to some things that never change. Notice in these verses some Unchanging Reasons For Thanksgiving.
I. V. 5-6, 8 OUR SAVIOR
(Ill. These verses tells us of just a few of the unchanging glories of our Lord! The things revealed here are causes for thankfulness at all times.)
A. V. 5 His Abiding Presence – Regardless of where the path of life leads, the saint of God will never walk alone – Matt. 28:20; Isa. 41:10!
B. V. 6 His Assisting Presence – (Ill. The word “helper” comes from a word which means to “to run”. The idea is that when we are in need, the Lord runs to our aid.) He is our Comforter – John 14:16. (Ill. Paraklete – One called alongside of another to give aid and comfort!)
C. V. 8 His Anchoring Presence – One of our greatest sources of thanksgiving this evening is in the truth that Jesus never changes! What He was then is what He is now! From before creation on into eternity, Jesus has never, nor will He ever change! He is still “I AM!” He still possesses all power in heaven and earth, Matt. 28:18. We can always be thankful for our Savior!
II. V. 9-12 OUR SALVATION
A. V. 9 The Price Of It – This verse mentions grace! We can thank God that salvation is given without cost, Isa. 55:1; Rev. 22:17. It is purely the operation of grace! Think of how you came to know Him! Dead in sin and He sought you, He called you, He died for you, He redeemed you and He keeps you. All you did was exercise the faith that He gave you. He did it all! (Ill. Eph. 2:8-9)
B. V. 12 The Pain Of It – For us the price was low, for God, the price was unimaginable! Our salvation cost God the life of His Son, John 3:16. His death on the cross is what provided salvation for you and me! There is no way that we can adequately describe the gory details of the death of the Lord Jesus, But the prophet Isaiah tells us something about what He suffered for us, Isa. 53:4-7. We can be thankful, everyday, that even though He knew what we were and what we would be like after He saved that He still went to the cross and died for our sins!
C. V. 12 The Purpose Of It – We are told here that He suffered the death He did so that He might “sanctify the people.” The word “sanctify” means “to separate from vain things and set apart for God’s use.” This is why Jesus died! He died to take vile sinners out of their sins and set them apart from this world for the glory of God. He saved us so that we might become different and that God might be able to use us for His glory, 2 Cor. 5:17; Ill. Paul 1 Tim. 1:12-15. We can be thankful that we which were so lost and wicked have now been cleansed and set apart for God’s glory through the blood of Jesus!
III. V. 13 OUR SEPARATION
A. The call of this verse is for us to do on the outside what He has already done on the inside. That is, He has set us apart inwardly through the redemption of the blood of Jesus. He call to us is that we willingly take our stand with Jesus on the outside of society. He is calling us to pick up our cross and bear the reproach of Jesus, Matt. 16:24. He is telling us to be different – 2 Cor. 6:17.
B. We ought to thank the Lord that He has made a change in us. The very fact that we don’t live like we used to, that we don’t find enjoyment in all the things the world is running to, that we are different is a cause for rejoicing everyday of our lives!
C. We ought to stand out and we should be thankful when we do!
IV. V. 14 OUR SANCTUARY
A. Again, we are reminded that we are living in a world that is constantly changing. If all of our hopes are placed in this world and in the physical realm, then we are going to be disappointed more than we will be happy.
However, the child of God can rejoice in the fact that this world is not the end all, tell all of our Christian experience! Verse 14 tells us that there is something better just down the road!
B. We can thank the Lord this evening that when this journey is over, we have a city awaiting us were we can rest from our labors and where we can enjoy the sweet presence of the Lord. It is a place of which we know little, but we do know that none of the problems of life will be allowed there, Rev. 21:4. We do know that we will be with Jesus, John 14:1-3. We do know enough to allow us to be thankful for that blessed home that waits for every child of God.
Let us be thankful for all the things He gives us. Let us praise Him for our health, our families, our financial blessings and so on. Let us not take them for granted. But, let us learn to be more thankful for those things which we can never lose! Let’s learn to be ever thankful for those things that cannot change! When all the physical blessings have faded and we can find no reason for praise in them, let us thank the Lord that there are some things that will never change! In these things we have an unchanging reason for eternal thanksgiving!
Why not come before Him right now and just thank Him for Who He is and for what He has given you and me!
Romans 8:36 – As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. (KJV)
Many years ago, a paramedic discovered a soldier’s knapsack Bible. It belonged to his uncle, who had been killed in World War I. The Bible, along with his other possessions, had been returned to his grieving family. As they looked through the Bible, they discovered these words from Romans were underlined in pencil: “For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter.” They seemed to describe the young man’s horrifying experiences of trench warfare.
Alec, the paramedic, felt as though his young uncle was speaking to him beyond the grave, letting him know that his death at the Somme was a sacrifice for the freedom of the people back home. But his message didn’t end there. Verses 38 to 39 were double underlined, revealing the young soldier’s faith, which death could not diminish nor destroy.
Romans 8:38-39 – For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. (KJV)
In the midst of all our carefree leisure, happy pursuits, and personal freedom, does our faith match up to that of the young soldier?
Prayer: Lord Jesus, nothing can ever separate us from You, but sometimes we take that for granted. Remind us of Your sacrifice, Your loss, Your passion that has given us this wonderful opportunity to live beyond death, to hope above adversity, to have faith in the face of danger and trouble. In Your Holy Name we pray. Amen.
Have you taken time today to thank God for His mercy, kindness and grace? Are you thankful for all He has bestowed upon you? Here are some Bible verses about thankfulness.
Psalm 116:17 I will offer to thee the sacrifice of thanksgiving, And will call upon the name of the LORD.
Ephesians 1:16 Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers;
Ephesians 5:20 Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;
Philippians 1:3 I thank my God upon every remembrance of you,
1 Thessalonians 5:18 In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
2 Thessalonians 2:13 But we are bound to give thanks alway to God for you, brethren beloved of the Lord, because God hath from the beginning chosen you to salvation through sanctification of the Spirit and belief of the truth:
Revelation 7:12 Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.
Examples and Reasons to be Thankful
Daniel 2:23 I thank thee, and praise thee, O thou God of my fathers, Who hast given me wisdom and might, And hast made known unto me now what we desired of thee: For thou hast now made known unto us the king’s matter.
John 6:11 And Jesus took the loaves; and when he had given thanks, he distributed to the disciples, and the disciples to them that were set down; and likewise of the fishes as much as they would.
John 11:41 Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead was laid. And Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I thank thee that thou hast heard me.
1 Corinthians 11:24 And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me.
1 Corinthians 15:57 But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
2 Corinthians 9:15 Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.
1 Thessalonians 1:2 We give thanks to God always for you all, making mention of you in our prayers