DUE to the COVID-19 pandemic
FUN FAIR CANCELED: We regret to have to cancel our Family Fun Fair scheduled originally for July 11. If you are wondering why we do this so far in advance, it is because we have to reserve things like the Bubble House in advance. The thought of having 25 kids bouncing around in a 25 x 25-foot enclosure would horrify the health officials even if social distancing were relaxed. Our insurance company and we do not want to risk a child getting the virus because of us. We will put it on the schedule for next summer.
MAY 26 FOOD BANK STILL ON: We are not sure how it will be run, but we will be doing the Food Give-Away with the truck here on Tuesday, May 26. We will have more information later, but please keep it on your calendar. Spreading it out, wearing masks, etc., will undoubtedly be in order; people need food help more than ever, so save that date. If you have any questions, contact Richard or Tina Hoyt.
THANKS TO KARL MARCUSSEN for having our worship service continue on ZOOM on Sunday at 11:00. If you have not been participating, call Karl at 574-514-1400; what is needed on your end is a computer or smartphone and a Internet or WiFi connection. We all need to meet in whatever means is available to us. Some Christians from other congregations have been joining us.
INTRODUCTION — 1 Corinthians 13:13 (KJV) — And now abides faith, hope, charity [love], these three; but the greatest of these is charity [love].
Early Christians and the Plague
The church historian Eusdebius (A.D. 260-340) relayed a report by Dionysius (A.D. 200-265), a bishop of Alexandria, saying in part:
— from: https://www.worldbibleschool.net/action-march-2020/I. Hope for a Christian is not wishing. 1 Corinthians 9:10 — … he that plows should plow in hope — That is the only reference that involves “wishing.”
II. The Christian view of hope is to expect, to look for, to await. Not to wish it may happen.
A. Romans 4:16-22 — Speaking of Abraham talks about him being the father of many nations and then says “… believed in hope, that he might become the father of many nations, according to that which was spoken, …” and ends with “and being not weak in faith …” (verse 19).III. THE BIBLE IS FULL OF HOPE STORIES.
B. Hope does not depend upon what a man possesses, upon what he may be able to do for himself, nor upon what any other human being may do for him.
C. 2 Corinthians 1:10 (NIV) — “He delivered us from such a deadly peril, … . On him we have set our HOPE that he will continue to deliver us.”
D. Colossian 1:27 — “… God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this mystery, which is Christ in you, the HOPE of glory.”
E. 1 Thessalonians 5:8 — referring to Christians “let us be sober, putting on faith and love as the breastplate, and the THE HOPE OF SALVATION as a helmet.”
NOT WISH FOR IT — HAVE IT!F. Hebrews 6:17-20 — “Because God wanted to make the unchanging nature of his purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, he confirmed with an oath. God did this so that by two unchangeable things in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled to take hold of THE HOPE set before us may be greatly encouraged. We have this HOPE [promise] as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. …”
G. Romans 15:13 — “May the God of HOPE fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with HOPE by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
A. Abraham, David, Gideon, Job, Paul, Peter.
B. SONG: “My Hope Is Built on Nothing Less.”
C. Starting quote — FAITH/HOPE/LOVE INTERTWINED.
(Emphasis is by jnc)
THE BACK PAGE
THIS WAS LAST SUNDAY'S (5/3/20) SERMON on our Zoom worship meeting. You know that I try very hard to present lessons that get at understandings we may not have, or concepts from the Bible to which we need to pay attention. Jim Harasewicz kept that theme going April 26 with a great lesson on faith, and this morning I want us to talk about the biblical concept of hope. Our key passage is 1 Corinthians 13:13, “And now abides faith, hope, charity, these three. But the greatest of these is charity (or love).” Jim talked about faith, but how can hope be listed as a foundation of being a Christian? The answer is that the biblical concept of hope is not “to wish.”
The lexicon tells me that the word translated hope means to expect, to look for, to await. It is not to wish for something to happen. In Romans 4:16-22, Paul speaks of Abraham being the father of many nations, and Paul says Abraham “believed in hope.” Does that mean that Abraham hoped that God did not lie about what Abraham's future was going to be? That is absurd. Verse 19 tells us that Abraham believed and was not weak in faith. Abraham's hope was to look for what was about to happen.
HOPE DOES NOT DEPEND UPON WHAT A MAN POSSESSES, UPON WHAT HE MAY BE ABLE TO DO FOR HIMSELF, NOR UPON WHAT ANY OTHER HUMAN BEING MAY DO FOR HIM.
We do not hope (wish) that we go to heaven; we look forward to it. Read 2 Timothy 4:6-8 and see if you think Paul expresses the WISH that heaven awaits him. He looks forward to heaven. Over and over, we see this concept of hope in the Bible. 2 Corinthians 1:10 says, “On him we have set our hope that he will continue to deliver us.” Not that we wish he could or would. Colossians 1:27 speaks of the “hope of glory” — not that we wish it was, but that we are waiting for it.
1 Thessalonians 5:8 refers to Christians and repeats the message of our key passage in 1 Corinthians 13:13. Notice “let us be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith (which Jim talked about last Sunday) and love; and for the helmet the HOPE of salvation.” Notice this is a covering for the head, the most sensitive part of our bodies. Notice it is not the “wish of salvation”; it is “the hope,” the expectancy, the things for which we are waiting.
In Hebrews 6:17-20, we see this stated again. Read the passage. Notice that there are two unchangeable things. One is that God cannot lie. The other is that our HOPE is an anchor for us. That is our promise of salvation. In Romans 15:13, we see God referred to as the “God of HOPE,” the God of promise, the God we can look forward to — not the God of maybe or possibly or could. The passage goes on to say that this is through the power of the Holy Spirit.
SOME HELP IN STAYING HOME
LET ME MAKE SOME SUGGESTIONS if you are struggling with staying in your house to avoid the pandemic. Let me, first of all, encourage you to take this seriously. The politicians are making this a political football, and they are trying to get votes by taking public positions which their media outlets promote. They even have their own “experts,” so we need to practice some common sense, and God's practice of quarantine that goes back to the Old Testament still works. Here are some suggestions:
— John Clayton
Our sign by the street!
Scripture links/references are from BibleGateway.com. Unhighlighted scriptures can be looked up at their website.