This last Sunday, we completed our Advent Series for 2017 with two unique services on Christmas Eve.
Our first service was Sunday morning, and we unpacked the Biblical theme of Hope. We clarified the difference between Biblical idea of Hope, as opposed to mere human optimism. And in the clarification, we discovered what healthy human existence can look like in Jesus. To view that morning sermon, please click here.
Our second service was Sunday afternoon, where we heard a Christmas Eve devotional on the Biblical theme of Love. We heard from two biblical prophets in history, found in the Bible — one of them human, and one of them divine. They interpreted the Luke 2 Christmas story for us, and taught us that the love of God helps us see that we are far more wicked than we believe, and yet far more accepted and loved than we ever dared hope. To view that afternoon devotional, please click here.
As we have shared with you over the last two weeks, we have teamed up with the Bible Project for our Advent series this year. In fact, it was this wonderful team of people who love Jesus who gave us the idea for this series in the first place! So, please take a look at the videos below. The first further explores the Biblical theme of Hope, and the second, the theme of Love. Each are only about four minutes long. You will find your comprehension broadened as you go on an animated tour through the whole Bible.
Finally, download the study notes (see the links right above each video) to use as a guide with your family, some friends, or your community group. It will guide your continued exploration to discover what these Biblical themes are all about.
May God grant you his Shalom, Joy, Hope, and Love,
study notes on Hope
study notes on Love
As I sit down to write this little article, I’ve just come from a hospital room visiting one of our long time members at Calvary. In addition to the circumstances that caused him to be admitted, he has been battling a serious health condition for many years.
We continue to study the 400 year history of God’s covenant people, the Israelites, as found in the books of first and second Kings, but as seen through the eyes of Yahweh’s prophets. Our most current study? The prophet Amos, and his poetry, sermons, and oracles.
Child Dedications May 2017
Six children were dedicated this past Sunday. We pray God's blessings upon these children and their parents!
The main aim of the sermon series we are currently in, The Whole Story, is to inspire you to read through the whole Bible over the course of about eighteen months, which began in January 2018. A foundational reason for this is that we believe that on this journey we will experience, week by week, the exciting truth that the Bible is a unified story that points us to Jesus.
The book of the prophet Hosea. Honestly, in first reading, it can be difficult to grasp. There are quite a few movements and shifts in thinking, and our author mixes various styles of writing and a multitude of images and themes. So as I spent time over the course of a week with this book as a reader, and studier, what struck me was that I needed to process and meditate on Hosea as a whole. To step back and see the larger picture. To not get lost in the details. And I kept asking the question, “Is there a major theme here that you are trying to communicate, Father?”
We are now making our way into the “Prophets Before the Exile” section of The Whole Story. I really like the way our Read Scripture plan breaks a bit here from the order of the books of the Old Testament in our common English translation of the bible. For the Read Scripture plan is more in line with how the story actually unfolded.