Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Pastor's Ponderings, November 23, 2021

Am I My Brother’s Keeper?

Lateshia Beachum, Annabelle Timsit and Bryan Pietsch wrote an article in the November 22, 2021 Washington Post entitled, “Daily coronavirus cases up 18 percent, according to CDC director.  “When you’re in the middle of a deadly pandemic, it isn’t only about you in a vacuum, it’s about your societal responsibility,” he said. “You do have a societal responsibility to help contain this outbreak, and you do that by getting vaccinated.


What responsibility do we have for others?  In the Bible, after Cain had killed his brother Abel, God asked him where his brother was. Cain answered, “I don’t know,” he replied. “Am I my brother’s keeper?” (Genesis 4:9).  The Bible tells us that we are to do unto others like you want them to do to you (Matthew 7:12).  Although the majority of the scientific community has concluded that the pandemic is much worse among the unvaccinated, some have concluded that they have no responsibility to be protected. Our public health officials explain that many who have underlying conditions or cannot be vaccinated can be kept safer as the country reaches community immunity.


The Bible says that there is a way that seems right to man but the end is death (Proverbs 14:12).  Many have decided that it is more important to take care of themselves with questionable cures and ignore the effect on others.  However, the Bible says that if one sees their brothers in need and are not compassionate towards them, the love of the Father is not in them (1 John 3:17).


Let us go to God and ask Him for His direction for getting vaccinated.  He has provided the wisdom, the resources, and the Warp Speed program under President Trump to generate the vaccine.  Let us allow God to speak to our hearts about becoming vaccinated since we are our brother’s keepers.


Genesis 4:9

New International Version

9 Then the Lord said to Cain, “Where is your brother Abel?”

“I don’t know,” he replied. “Am I my brother’s keeper?”


Matthew 7:12 

New International Version

12 So in everything, do to others what you would have them do to you, for this sums up the Law and the Prophets.


Proverbs 14:12

New International Version

12 There is a way that appears to be right, but in the end it leads to death


1 John 3:17 

New International Version

17 If anyone has material possessions and sees a brother or sister in need but has no pity on them, how can the love of God be in that person?








Wednesday, November 17, 2021

Pastor's Ponderings, November 17, 2021

Let Us Hear God’s Blessings 


Amy Grant wrote a powerful song in 1977 entitled, “Old Man’s Rubble.”   Some of the lyrics are, “Are you living in an old man's rubble, are you listenin' to the father of lies? If you are then you're headed for trouble. If you listen too long, you'll eventually die.”  Ms. Grant was referring to the devil whose purpose is to kill, steal and to destroy (John 10:10).  However, the song has other lyrics. “If you're living as a new creation, if you're listening to the Father of light, then you're living in a mighty fortress and you're gonna' be clothed in power and might.”


Who you allow to speak to you and whose words you accept will greatly affect the course of your life.  The evil one sends discouraging, disparaging, disappointing and despairing words, and those words can hinder one’s progress in life.  But Jesus says that His words are spirit and they are life (John 6:63).


In the Garden of Eden, Adam and Eve had sinned and then covered themselves with leaves because they discovered they were naked.  God asked them, “Who told you that you were naked?” (Genesis 3:11).  We have to ask ourselves to whom are we listening in our lives. Are we listening to the still small voice of God or are we listening to the powerful voices that call us to disobey God?  


God says that the day you hear His voice, we should not harden our hearts against him (Hebrews 3:15).  The Bible further states that those who have ears should hear what the Spirit is saying (Revelation 3:22).  We cannot please God without faith (Hebrews 11:6) and that faith comes from hearing God’s words (Romans 10:17).  


We are hearing many conflicting voices in the world.  For example, some suggest we should all be vaccinated against COVID-19 while others say it has not been tested enough.  Let us spend time with God, not demanding this or that but simply rejoicing in his presence and worshipping Him for who He is.  God wants the best for us. Let us listen, obey, and receive all the benefits that He has for us.


John 10:10

New International Version

10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.


John 6:63

New International Version

63 The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you—they are full of the Spirit and life.


Genesis 3:11

New International Version

11 And he said, “Who told you that you were naked? Have you eaten from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?”


Hebrews 3:15

New International Version

15 As has just been said: “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion.” 


Revelation 3:22 

New International Version

22 Whoever has ears, let them hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”


Hebrews 11:6 

New International Version

6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.


Romans 10:17

New International Version

17 Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.