Friday, March 29, 2013

Good Friday

To echo the explanations given by so many people,
we aren't able to call this Good Friday without Sunday!
Jesus was dead.
John 19:28-30, 'Later, knowing that everything had now been finished, and so that Scripture would be fulfilled, Jesus said, “I am thirsty.”  A jar of wine vinegar was there, so they soaked a sponge in it, put the sponge on a stalk of the hyssop plant, and lifted it to Jesus’ lips.  When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.'

Our savior died for us. He died for me. With everything I need to do today, I need to stop and ponder this. So many times we see leaders of our day ask for our dedication to show allegiance. Jesus looked at you and He looked at me and said, 'Let me show you.'

Jesus showed us the way to live.
I will remember Jesus' death on the cross. I will let it change the way I live. Will you?


Thursday, March 28, 2013

Maundy Thursday

Today, Maundy Thursday, is the day of Holy Week that is used to remember the last supper that Jesus had with His disciples. Below is a passage from Mark that tells this story.

Mark 14:12-26 The Last Supper

On the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread, when it was customary to sacrifice the Passover lamb, Jesus’ disciples asked him, “Where do you want us to go and make preparations for you to eat the Passover?” So he sent two of his disciples, telling them, “Go into the city, and a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him. Say to the owner of the house he enters, ‘The Teacher asks: Where is my guest room, where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?’ He will show you a large room upstairs, furnished and ready. Make preparations for us there.” The disciples left, went into the city and found things just as Jesus had told them. So they prepared the Passover. When evening came, Jesus arrived with the Twelve. While they were reclining at the table eating, he said, “Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me—one who is eating with me.” They were saddened, and one by one they said to him, “Surely you don’t mean me?” “It is one of the Twelve,” he replied, “one who dips bread into the bowl with me. The Son of Man will go just as it is written about him. But woe to that man who betrays the Son of Man! It would be better for him if he had not been born.” While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take it; this is my body.” Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and they all drank from it. “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many,” he said to them.  “Truly I tell you, I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.” When they had sung a hymn, they went out to the Mount of Olives.

I've taken communion many times before in church, but I'm still brought back to this scene. Today we are able to take communion in joy and happiness for what Jesus did, but in that upper room, there had to have been confusion for the disciples. This wasn't just another meal. Their leader, teacher and Messiah spoke of this meal being His last until He drank it anew in the Kingdom of God.
Let today be one of thankfulness, but also one of rememberance of Jesus' sacrifice. His blood was poured out for us all.


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Our King

To be honest with you, I have not seen many lambs in person. Probably as a child I saw some at the zoo or I went to an Easter production one year and they had live animals. I'm sure in Bible times that lambs were a common appearance. Lambs were needed for making sacrifices to God in the temple, and so raising lambs was necessary.
Josephus, the Jewish historian, wrote that one year a census was taken of the number of lambs slain for Passover and that figure was 256,500! So there was a good possibility that Jesus was surrounded by other lambs as he entered Jerusalem.
When John the Baptist started talking about Jesus as the lamb of God, 'Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!' (John 1:29), it would have made a profound impression on the people in Bible times. Lambs were raised to die. When Jesus entered Jerusalem for the Passover in John 12, people were chanting and screaming for a King, not a lamb. They wanted someone to come and rule over them with a just hand and wipe out the Roman government.
These people were trying to put together the king they wanted instead of the King they saw. As we focus on Jesus' resurrection this Easter, I'd like to challenge you to look at who Jesus is and not so much of what we want in our Savior. Jesus is JESUS. Jesus is GOD. He is our King, our Savior, our Lord, He reigns forever!! He is the ONLY way to heaven. He is the great Lamb of God that came to take away the sins of the world!! (Can you tell I'm excited for Easter??)

May God be with you during this Easter season. If you need a church to go to this Sunday, we'd love to have you at The Rescue. Go to for directions.

I'll be posting a Maundy Thursday and Good Friday blog this week.


Monday, March 18, 2013

The Verdict

Nicodemus was a Pharisee and a part of the Sanhedrin. He had been in many trial rooms listening to defenses and prosecutors. When Jesus spoke of a ‘verdict’, Nicodemus knew what that was. The decision was about to be laid down and there was nothing anyone could do about it.
John 3:19, ‘This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil.
Jesus was speaking of himself-the Light. He had come not so that we could add Christianity to our lives, but that our lives would be completely changed by the Light. Nicodemus had come to Jesus to find out who he was and see if there was a teaching of Jesus that he could add to his life. Jesus had something else for Nicodemus. To follow Jesus and see the Kingdom of God, you are to be born again. No matter how good of a Pharisee Nicodemus was, Jesus was asking for him to completely restart his spiritual life.
For Non-Christians: Your spiritual life is not separate from your everyday life. Whether you profess to have a belief in God or not, you have a relationship. God has a deep relationship with you-He loves you! This love came to a climax as He allowed His son to be crucified on a cross for the sins of the world, and yes that includes you. As a Christian, I apologize for the way we have represented our Savior. We have not loved you enough to help you understand the Light. Our hope is that you would recognize your relationship with your heavenly Father and realize how much He loves you and cares for you. And in response to that love you live a holy life in honor of Him.
The verdict-you need to be born again.
For Christians: Nicodemus thought he was saved and that he was in favor with God. He believed that he had his ticket for the kingdom of God. He was wrong. Jesus pointed out that even if you call yourself a religious person or a Christian and love the darkness, you are not following the Light. Think of your Christian past. When you accepted Christ and claimed to be ‘born again’, did your life change? If no, see below.
The verdict-you need to be born again.

Light has come into the world.



Monday, March 11, 2013

Our Worship

How do we worship?

It seems like an easy question, but it gets complex, especially when you’ve been a Christian for awhile. It’s very easy for us to leave the worship to the professionals. If we’re just able to make it to church on time, then that should be good enough. If the music isn’t up to par, or the preaching is off, then it will diminish the amount or quality of worship we experience.

In John chapter 2 we see the story about Jesus clearing the temple. They had been selling oxen, sheep and doves which were all to be used for sacrifices during the Passover feast. It made it so these people didn’t need to bring anything to the temple. If they were able to just bring money, their sacrifices could be purchased.

Too often we come to church bringing everything else except the most important thing-our sacrifice.

God is a gracious and righteous father. He wants our hearts. When was the last time you prayed before a worship service on Sunday about a sacrifice you were going to bring?

The best part about this is that God knows us. He knows what we are dealing with and He loves us.

Deuteronomy 7:9, ‘Know therefore that the LORD your God is God; he is the faithful God, keeping his covenant of love to a thousand generations of those who love him and keep his commandments.’

Monday, March 4, 2013

The Role of the Servant

When we read of Jesus' first miracle in the second chapter of John, we usually glance it over and say to ourselves, 'Eh, pretty neat trick Jesus. The whole water into wine thing. I would have chosen a different opening act, but that's ok.'
I grew up reading this story that way, but I was missing out on the purpose of why this miracle took place. If you read John 2:11 you'll see that the miracle was to reveal God's glory and as a result the disciples put their faith in Him. As we talked about on Sunday, this wasn't a story about a cool wedding trick but a test of obedience. Jesus instructed the servants of the banquet to give the master of the banquet water from the ceremonial washing jars as a solution to the wine shortage. He was instructing them to hand out BATH WATER!! He didn't even tell them it had been turned into wine, and it doesn't appear that he even touched the water or the jars.

But the servants did as they were told without knowing the end result.

I'm a planner. Especially being a pastor of a church. I like to plan ministries, events and even services so I can get an idea of what the end result will be. After reading this passage of scripture, I'm realizing I need to loosen the reins a little bit (ok a lotta bit!), and let the Spirit take even more control over my life, my ministry, and my family. Even if I don't know what will come of it, I know that I serve a God that will never leave or forsake me.

So, where are you today? We were asked the question yesterday at The Rescue, 'Is God asking you to do something without revealing the end result? And if so, what are you going to do about it?'

Maybe He is simply saving the best till' last!


On The Desk

My book for February was 'Multiply' by Francis Chan. One thing I love about most of Francis Chan's books is that he connects a website to the chapters and so before or after reading them, you can watch a video of Chan explaining a little more. The purpose of 'Multiply' was to provide a background and plan for Christians to produce disciples. Now we know that our human attempts at discipling will fail if we don't invite the Spirit to direct us and guide us. So Chan outlines (with a ton of scripture-which is AWESOME! Thank you Bible reading authors!) what it means to be a Christian, how the Spirit can use us, how the early church functioned, and what it means for us today. Not a very deep book, but I don't believe that was the purpose. It lays out the foundation for starting a discipling ministry. We will be promoting this book through our small groups for an upcoming study. If you'd like to be a part of a small group at The Rescue you can email me at
So 'Multiply' was authored by Francis Chan with the foreword being done by David
for March I'll be reading 'Follow Me' by David Platt with the foreward by.......Francis Chan! You saw that coming, huh?