Stirrings at Bethesda
A Weekly Publication of
Bethesda Baptist Church
August 4, 2014
1. Bethesda Academy, Monday, 6:30 p.m.
2. Bible Study & Prayer Meeting, Wednesday, 7:00 p.m.
3. Deacons’ Meeting, Wednesday, 7:45 p.m.
4. Roller Skating Fellowship, Saturday, 5:15 p.m.
5. Sunday School, Sunday, 9:15 a.m.
6. Worship Service,Sunday, 10:30 a.m.
7. Discipleship Training, Sunday, 5 p.m.
Roller Skating Fellowship
Invite your friends to our church’s fellowship at Great Skate Roller Rink in St. Peters! You do not have to skate to attend the fellowship. We have the rink from 5:15 – 7:15 p.m. on Saturday evening, August 9. If you are planning on attending and did not sign the sheet in the foyer, please call Debbie Walker and let her know.
The Bethesda Academy
Last week we examined God’s Sovereignty over all creation as seen in the vision of John in Revelation chapter 4. We continue looking at that vision this evening (Monday) at 6:30 p.m. as we review chapter 5. You are more than welcome to join us this evening!
“Apart from God’s intervention, man’s religious development is
D O W N W A R D.”
Ladies’ Book Study!
The new book study, “Desperate, Seeking Simplicity … finding the cross” by Cindi Wood, begins on Tuesday, August 19 at 6:30 p.m. We have a sign up sheet on the table in the foyer if you are interested in being a part of the study Or, simply contact Pam and let her know you are coming so she has an accurate count of the books she needs.
Every ladies book study so far has been well attended and well received. The ladies have reported having a great time and I am certain this study will not be an exception! So plan on joining the group in 2 weeks.
You might want to update your calendars with these upcoming dates:
* Sunday, August 31, 6pm – 5th Sunday Q & A fellowship
* Friday, September 12 – Men & Boys Campout
* Saturday, October 11 – Church Bonfire
“Titles (e.g., ‘Dr.’, ‘PhD’) apart from the wisdom & knowledge of God mean nothing in the eyes of the Lord.”
For several years now I have been somewhat bothered by the continual rise of “parachurch” organizations. Some of them do tremendous work for the Lord Jesus; others appear to be bent on replacing the local church.
Debbie and I continue to support some of these organizations financially. My concern has been with some of the people who serve with these parachurch organizations and, over time, slowly drift away from their local church and devote all their time and energies to the parachurch group. This is NOT God’s way.
Recently I received an article written by Dr. Keith A. Mathison on the topic of parachurch groups and I wish to share his conclusion with each of you.
“Parachurch ministries should not confuse themselves and their mission with the distinctive calling of the local church. It is within the context of the local church, not the parachurch, that Christians gather regularly to hear the preaching of the Word of God and to partake of the sacraments. Parachurch ministries must also beware of watering down the distinctive confessions of the local churches represented by those involved in the ministry. Parachurch ministries are not identical to the local church, and when they behave as if they are, they require criticism and correction. However, when those who call upon the name of the Lord Jesus, even if they are in different evangelical denominations, see a way to meet a legitimate need that the local church cannot meet because the need is too big or that the local church is not meeting for some other reason, the local church has no reason to hinder such Christians in their attempts to gather their resources, pool their relents, and use their gifts for the furtherance of the kingdom and the glory of God.”
I agree with the author. Parachurch organizations that help the church in their mission are a blessing. Those involved in such ministries who are using their gifts to serve Christ are to be praised.
On the other hand, if those working with such ministries begin substituting their work with that group for their work with the local church then they have gone too far. Or when the parachurch organization is not contributing to the growth and work of the local church, it should be closed. Let me close by sharing with you once more the quote from Burk Parsons that was in our Sunday bulletin this past week.
“Parachurch ministries exist to come alongside and serve the local church, but if they ever try to replace the church, they should close their doors. The ordinary-means-of-grace-ministry of the local church is the primary means of growth, and parachurch ministries exist to remind us of this and point us back to the church. As such, every parachurch ministry should have as its long term goal to work itself out of existence. …”
May the Lord give you a great week!