Monthly Archives: May 2007

The End is the Beginning

The Bible is the most relevant book that you will ever read. The timeless themes that run throughout the pages of Scripture resonate with us all, no matter what our situation in life. Life is characterized by transition, loss, failure, glory, success, deception, pride, love, death and redemption. These robust themes fill the pages of Scripture and beg for exposition and application.

This Sunday at Redeemer we expectantly take up our study of the first and second books of Samuel with How the Mighty Have Fallen, from 1 Samuel 31 – 2 Samuel 1. Jim Hamilton will be leading us through the ending of the days of Saul as this once mighty and promising King falls in disgrace. Of course the ending of one era marks the beginning of another…

Throughout Saul’s leadership, we have seen others that have been impacted by his own sin and rebellion. This scene in the narrative is no different as his own son pays the highest price for his father’s wickedness. It is interesting also to note the way in which the death of Saul dishonors God. When those who represent God fail as ambassadors of the truth, the glory of God is trampled upon.

How does it strike you when mighty men and women of the faith fail? How are you impacted by their sin? How are unbelievers impacted by their hypocrisy? What about you? What picture of God are you painting for those in your workplace or neighborhood? Who do you turn to it times of tragedy or disappointment? What will become of Israel now? They have been left leaderless and vulnerable. Join us this Sunday as we again embark on this journey through 2 Samuel together.

Advertisements

Do You Like Your Church?

In your experience, do conversations about the Church tend to be positive or negative? Would most of the people around you say that they truly love their church, or would the conversation be laden with critical remarks? Why are people so critical of their churches? Are all of these churches really doing a poor job, or is there another side to the story?

Over the past few months at Redeemer we’ve been walking together through Paul’s first letter to his son in the faith, Timothy. One of the obvious applications that we have taken away from the text involves “watching your life…” I wonder if there is a link between unhappiness in the local church and involvement in the local church. Would those who are unhappy be characterized as consumers or builders?

What about you? Do you love your church? Do you consider it the best place on earth? Are you committed to building or are you consuming? We see in Paul’s thesis of the letter, a desire to have the church “conduct themselves properly in the household of God…” Do you trust your own evaluation of yourself to do that? Who else is walking with you as you are being sanctified?

Join us this week as we reflect on Building a Gospel Community. The major application of this sermon will be the introduction of small groups at Redeemer. These groups (Care Groups) are designed to help us watch our lives and doctrine closely.

So, friend, do you need this? Who cares for you when life is difficult? Do others feel your spiritual care for them? Does your relationship with your church reflect a life marked by the gospel? Join us as we seek to stir one another up to good works for the glory of God!

Are You Rich….In Christ?

When John D. Rockefeller died, his aide was asked how much money and property he left behind. The man wisely answered, “He left it all behind.” We are fully aware of this ancient truth, aren’t we? We know that when we enter an art museum, we enter with nothing in our hands. But, if we were to begin to take all the paintings off the wall and seek to carry the sculptures out with us, we would not get very far. Only a fool would try to do something like that, right?

This week at Redeemer, we will complete our exposition of Paul’s first letter to Timothy as we consider A Closing—Be Rich in Christ, from 1 Timothy 6:17-21. I think it is very significant that Paul chooses to close this important letter to Timothy with an exhortation and warning about money, especially since he has already brought the dangers of money to the attention of Timothy earlier in this same letter. Apparently this topic is worthy of the consideration of this young pastor, his congregation and by extension, Christians everywhere!

Friend, where are you storing up treasure (verse 19)? Where do your hopes rest? Do you find more enjoyment in service or payday? Do you have any paintings under your arm as you are heading for the exit of the museum?

Frustrated with the Old Testament?

Have you ever spent 30 minutes looking for your keys only to find that they are in your pocket? Have you ever searched the car or your desk for your glasses only to find that you were wearing them? The resulting feeling of humiliation coupled with frustration has been a common one for me. But imagine if you looked for your keys every day of your life for 30 years, only to find that you had them all the time!

This might come close to what the men on the road to Emmaus experienced. They were distraught and downcast. Their Messiah, the one whom they’d waited for, longed for, hoped for had been crucified. “We were hoping that He was the one to Redeem Israel,” they said (Luke 24:21). Little did they know that they were walking and talking to the One who was pierced for their transgressions—the promised One! Thus, Jesus “began with Moses and all the Prophets explaining to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures (Luke 24:25-27).”

This week at Redeemer, we will be considering one of those prophets as Jim Hamilton considers Finding Jesus in First Samuel. Have you ever tried following all the winding streams running through the Bible to their destination? Is there unity between the testaments? Can we really look at the Old Testament through “messianic lenses?” Have we missed Jesus in the Old Testament? Friend, I hope that you will join us as we all seek to cling to the “Rock of Escape” that is Jesus the Messiah, the one promised of old to deliver us from our sins.

Running to the Rock with You!

Lyrics to a Great New Hymn

I am blessed to serve with Jim and Jill Hamilton at Baptist Church of the Redeemer. Jim and Jill lead us each week in singing that directs our hearts to the all satisfying, all mighty God. They have recently blessed our congregation with this new hymn. The lyrics are below: ENJOY!


“Arise, O Star”

Words and Music by Jim and Jill Hamilton, 2006

Seed of the woman / Promised long ago
Sworn to crush the serpent’s head / That to Eden we might go
All nations will be blessed / In the seed of Abraham
And the scepter is to Judah / The land belongs to him

Chorus
Arise, O Star / Jacob longs for you
Keep your word, Lord / Your promises all true
Your people wait / For that Day when you will come
Take your power and reign / Heaven’s highest Son

The branch will come from Jesse / Great David’s greater Son
As a Son to God comes He / To the throne in Zion
The prophet like Moses / Priest like Melchizedek
Anointed with the Spirit / Messiah, he shall reign

Chorus

So the Man of Sorrows came / Acquainted with his grief
Smitten for our sins / Raised to set us free
And he shall come again / With all his holy ones
For that day we watch / Come soon, Lord Jesus

Chorus

REDEEMER News…

This is a very exciting time at Redeemer! The Lord has been blessed us with a fruitful time worshiping at Fort Bend Baptist Academy. Now, the door has opened for another location that will better serve our people, and we are praising God for His provision. Here are a few reasons why this Sunday, May 6th, will be particularly special:

1. This Sunday, we will celebrate our first baptism at Redeemer! David Hamilton, Jim’s younger brother has professed faith in Jesus Christ and will be baptized this Sunday, Lord willing. Be sure to stay after worship and our fellowship meal, as we will be walking over to the sanctuary for the Baptism.

2. The Elders will be presenting Billy Newhouse as the Senior Pastoral Assistant, a new church staff position at Redeemer.

3. This Sunday we will be kicking off our new members class, called Starting Point. If you are considering membership at Redeemer, be sure to attend this 5-week class that will be overviewing our vision, doctrine and church structure. This class will meet at 9:30AM.

4. There will be a sermon! This week we will be considering 1 Timothy 6:11-16, A Charge to the Pastors. Last week we were intentionally left with the image of the thorny vines of geed and covetousness growing around our hearts and minds, seeking to choke out the Word of God. What can we do? Paul says we must FLEE and FIGHT! What is our motivation for the fight??—the answer is found in verse 12: eternal life! Friend, how is the fight going? Are you unaware of the battle that is raging, the thorns that are growing, the Word that is being choked out of your life?

We would love for you to join us this week as we seek the One who “testified the confession before Pontius Pilate…, the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who possesses immortality and dwells in unapproachable light.”

May He receive Glory and Eternal Dominion!

Great Interview on the Gospel and Gender

Perhaps there are many pastors out there who are unaware of the feminist controversy. Perhaps there are pastors out there who are “quiet complimentarians,” or “natural chauvinists.” Maybe there are pastors who are committed to a biblical understanding of gender roles in the church, but don’t know how to practically implement change.

Should women pray in church? Should women be elders in churches? What about headship in the family? Is the culture moving away from distinction between the genders? Does the Bible support this type of shift? If not, what are the implications of a move away from a biblical model?

If these questions are intriguing to you, I highly recommend that you listen to this interview. The interviewer is Mark Dever, the and panel includes, Randy Stinson, the Executive Director of The Council on Biblical Manhood and Womanhood, Russell Moore, the Dean of the School of Theology at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and C.J. Mahaney, President of Sovereign Grace Ministries. How’s that for a line up?

Enjoy!