Below is our archive of public news and announcements.
2017 Summer Series
Our Summer Series will features speakers from our area throughout the summer. Click here to view the schedule.
2017 Bible Reading Plan
Commit to spending some time each week in 2017 paying attention to the message of the prophets! Download the Bible reading schedule here. This week's reading is Jeremiah 50-52.
From the desk of Steve Patton
"...that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ." - Philippians 3:9
A lot of Christians fear unfaithfulness to "the church" more than unfaithfulness to Christ. They do not want to have the elders calling them or be marked unfaithful or labeled a false teacher by the church. Their attendance is motivated by what other members might think if they were to miss services. Even their manner of life is motivated by fear of what their fellow Christians might think. I do believe we should be considering our example before others and be faithful in all things. But what is your true motivation?
Paul wanted us to understand our salvation begins with our relationship with God. Our relationship with our brethren flows from that. Our walking in the light means we have fellowship with him. Only then are we in fellowship with our brethren (1 John 1:1-7). I preached last Sunday about our two motivations for serving the Lord - fear of God and the love of Christ (2 Cor. 5:11-15). Some want to add fear of the brethren. It should not be that way. Elders or fellow Christians who reach out to us are not to be feared but loved. They care enough to love you and show concern for your soul.
Always remember the reason you come on Sunday is, first and foremost, that Christ loves you and died for you. Because He died for you, live for Him. That is the reason for your faithfulness.
From the desk of Taylor Pickup
Jeremiah 46-51 is a series of oracles against the various nations that existed during that time. Jeremiah was declaring the future downfall that God was bringing upon those nations. We may ask why this is relevant for us today. Why would the fate of those people and their nations be something that God decided to include in His holy scriptures? Is there really any benefit in studying the Bible’s description of ancient world events? Yes, there is enormous benefit!
Jeremiah’s words show us that mankind as a whole hasn’t improved. The Egyptians trusted in their Pharaoh. The Moabites trusted in their false gods. The Ammonites trusted in their wealth. The Edomites trusted in their fortified dwelling places. Babylon trusted in their tremendous military might. But Jeremiah declared that the nations were placing their trust in something weak and unreliable. God alone was powerful and the source of actual strength. Through Jeremiah’s oracles, God was claiming that the earth was His to control and rule.
The world today acts just like the ancient world. People trust in their social status, material possessions, military might, and human leaders. That’s why the congregation here is constantly trying to lean on God’s grace and love. If Jeremiah showed up today and spent time with the Christians here in the University area, I hope he would be pleasantly surprised to see that we put our complete trust and faith in the Lord.
From the desk of Joshua Creel
It's Not A Sin If You Don't Act?
Being tempted isn't a sin. I've said that many times to many people. I've said it to people who were struggling with sin, seeking to encourage them that not acting on the temptation is itself a victory. And this is true... in part. After all, we know our Savior was "tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin" (Heb. 4.15). Being tempted isn't a sin.
However, we might have mistakenly lumped temptation in with desire. Temptation arises from an external stimulus and seeks to arouse our desire. And when our desire is sufficiently enticed, we sin (James 1.14-15). So, it's not just the actions that are wrong, but the condition of our heart which make those actions possible. This was Jesus' point in the sermon on the mount when He emphasized that true righteousness warns against more than the actions of murder and adultery, but must govern the hatred and lust within (Matthew 5.21-28). It is why He said our sinful actions proceed from the heart (Matthew 15.19).
We cannot prevent temptation from coming our way; the world is filled with them. But our aim is to condition our hearts so that not only do we refrain from acting on temptation, our hearts don't even desire to act! Then we will truly be "pure in heart" and have the hope of seeing God (Matthew 5.8).