29/09/2019

This week we are looking at the fourth of the seven letters that Jesus writes to the churches of Asia Minor as recorded in the book of Revelation.

And this letter to the church of Thyatira could be summed up as Jesus saying to them: ‘Don’t be naïve’.

Jesus commends the church for their good works – commendable things like love for others and service to others. But the church had offended Jesus by tolerating someone who was leading the church to idolatry and immorality through false teaching.

And the problem was that the church was almost too ‘nice’. It was so tolerant that false teaching and immoral living ate away like a cancer at the church’s commitment to Christ and testimony for Christ.

Jesus calls us also to ‘not be naïve’ and instead hold on to our Christian deeds, our love and faith, our service and our perseverance as we receiving the heavenly promise that can only be found in Christ Jesus our Lord.

May God bless you as we hear his message, and as we are victorious.

Pastor Ben

22/09/2019

This week we look at the next church along our journey around Asia Minor and the Seven letters in the Book of Revelation that Jesus wrote to them through His servant John.

And this letter to the church in Pergamum is reminding the people there to be on the lookout for false teachers.

The church had been doing well in remaining faithful to Christ against the persecution of those outside the church, but they were at risk of being undone from within through false teachers who were encouraging them to take part in pagan feasts and practice immorality.

Jesus tells them to watch out for this false teaching, and calls them to repent.

And to those who do, who are victorious, Jesus promises them manna (the good food from heaven), a white stone (used to indicate innocence and acquittal at judgement day), and a new name (being chosen by God).

May God bless you as we hear his message, and as we are victorious.

Pastor Ben

15/09/2019

We are into the second week of this great series looking at Jesus (through the Apostle John) writing seven letters to seven churches scattered through Asia Minor that we find in the Book of Revelation.

This week we look at the letter to the church in Smyrna, and the Smyrnean church was poor, persecuted and harassed in the city they were located.

Jesus is fully aware of this, for He himself had experienced the same on His way to the cross for them, which is why he does not give them an opportunity to feel sorry for themselves, and instead says to them they because of their faith in Him, in Christ, that they are rich.

And this is our encouragement, that no matter what testing of the faith we receive, if we are loyal to Jesus, even to the point of giving our lives (I pray it does not come to that), he will give us the crown of life.

May God bless you as we hear his message, as we are victorious, and as you are not hurt at all by the second death.

Pastor Ben

08/09/2019

This week we are starting a brand new seven week series called (for lack of any great creativity) se7en.

We are looking at the 7 letters to the 7 churches in the book of Revelation (chapters 2 & 3).

We start with the first of these letters from the Apostle John who is writing to the church in Ephesus.

And we will see that Jesus commends the church at Ephesus for things that seem to revolve around doctrinal carefulness.

But while they were faithful to the teaching of Jesus, and very wary of false prophets, their love for Jesus was lacking. They didn’t have Him as their number one priority, and Jesus (through this letter) calls them out on it.

Sometimes, we too are tempted to believe that ‘proper’ belief is all that matters; that we say the right words in the right way at the right time. But when that is at the neglect of proper affection and proper behavior in our relationship with Jesus – he might say to us: “You have forsaken the love you had at first”.

May God bless you as we hear his message, and receive the right to eat from the tree of life, which is in the paradise of God.

Pastor Ben

01/09/2019

A prayer for fathers this fathers day:
God our Father, we pray for all fathers:
for new fathers, coming to terms with both the joys and
demands of fatherhood;
for those who are uncertain or confused about their role as
fathers;
for those whose work keeps them from spending time with
their children;
for those who are afraid of the responsibilities of parenting;
for those who are unable to provide for their children
through unemployment or sickness;
for those whose children have physical, mental or
emotional disabilities;
for those who are violent or unloving towards their children;
for those whose own fathers abused them or failed to love them;
for those who are separated from their children by marriage breakdown, divorce or
death;
for those who care for the children of others;
for those whose desire to be a father has not been fulfilled;
and for those whose children have rejected their love.
Bless all fathers, so that their love may be tender and strong,
and that they may lead their children to know and do what is good,
living not for themselves, but for God and for others.

Amen
Pastor Roelof

25/08/2019

This week we are looking at an entire book of the Bible. And that is the book of Jude. And it’s so short – there are not even chapters in it!

Jude, the brother of Jesus Christ, (and also the brother of James) writes this letter to a group of Christians reminding them that they have been called, loved and kept by Christ.

But the main ‘guts’ of what he has to say is about ‘fighting’ for the faith or ‘contending’ for the faith.

And the reason for that is because while Jesus was alive, Jude was not a believing Christian, but after Jesus rose from the dead – things changed, and Jude came to believe in Jesus as his Lord and Saviour.

He wanted to share this good news with people all over the world, but was facing a pressing issue, and so in this letter he list a whole lot of ‘red flags’ of what Christians should be aware of, things that he had seen and things others had already warned them about.

And in this call to ‘fight’ or ‘content’ for the faith – it is a charge to really delight in God and to show mercy in others, because that is how the church fights valiantly for the faith: by loving God and showing mercy.

May God our Saviour who has glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, bless you this week as you ‘fight’ for the faith.
Pastor Ben

18/08/2019

This week we are celebrating ‘Thanksgiving’ by remembering all that God has given to us, especially His gift of life, forgiveness and salvation through His Son, Jesus Christ.

As we focus on Psalm 100, we find five calls from God:

To shout for joy to the Lord;

To serve the Lord with gladness;

To come before Him with joyful songs;

To know that the Lord is good; and

To enter His gates with thanksgiving.

My pray for each of you today, is that you see all the blessings in your life as blessings from God, and that you spend meaningful time in thankfulness to Him.

I encourage you to take the time to read through the 100th Psalm again. Listen to God’s call and His blessings in your life, and I believe that your heart truly will overflow with thanksgiving to the Lord, as we “enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise.” (Psalm 100:4)

May God bless you as no matter your circumstances, no matter anything else that is going on in your life – you give thanks to Him
Pastor Ben

11/08/2019

This Sunday is the last in our series ‘All Are Welcomed’, and over the past five weeks we have done the following:

We’ve asked, ‘Are we a welcoming church?’

We’ve learned that our gatherings are not really about us, and that we should focus on others;

We’ve followed the teaching and example of Jesus to ‘go the extra mile’;

We’ve considered faith and obedience that leads us to prepare well for guests.

And we’ve learned from the principle of the holy kiss how we can lovingly greet one another and our guests;

This week, we put it all together by considering what it means to consider others greater than ourselves, and how we can make some practical changes to do just that.

Because ‘welcoming’ means ‘going’. The welcoming church is not merely a church that waits for the world to arrive at the physical address of our worship centres. The welcoming church is more of an attitude or disposition. It represents the mindset of an outward focus rather than an inward focus. It is about serving, rather than being served.

May God bless you, as we seek to be the welcoming church Jesus calls us to be.
In His Service, Pastor Ben

04/08/2019

Hi Church,

This Sunday, as we continue our series “All are Welcomed”, we are looking a little more closely at first impressions. Just how important is it that a first impression is one of love and care? It can be difficult, sometimes even impossible, to recover from a bad first impression whereas a good first impressions goes a long way.

Paul writes to the Thessalonian church about the importance of how we deal with each other, and others we encounter that may or may not be of God’s family. He encourages the church, God’s family, to not live in bitterness but instead to do what is good for each other and for everyone else. Here, again, Paul emphasises his teaching of self-sacrificial living. A lifestyle that makes a true and therefore the right kind of first impression.

Jesus laid aside his “rights” and “freedoms” to live a selfsacrificial life for the benefit of everyone else. He lived the life we fail to live, died the death we deserved to die to give us this life we can never earn and never have to pay back. With this gift of life comes a freedom to live by His Spirit. To live lives that are selfless and good for everyone else. This way of living makes the right first impression because it shows that God’s community lives like Jesus and reflects the nature of the God whom we represent. This way of life, because it is given by and supported by God, brings true joy.

Live fearlessly for others and experience the joy God has in and for you. In His Service, Pastor Roelof

28-07-2019

Hi Church,

This will be the 4th Sunday in our series “All are Welcomed” during which we will be exploring what it is to be “prepared for guests”.

It is going to be exciting to hear from Luke, the traveling doctor disciple, this week as he recorded Jesus showing us how God involves the church on His mission in the harvest.

As we read and hear from the gospel according to Luke we learn what it means to “be prepared for guests” where we are here so that we can “be prepared” to meet guests where they are at in the harvest or world.

We don’t “do welcoming” we “are welcoming”. Here among each other and out there in the harvest, because of and with the help of the Lord of the harvest.

Let’s seek to be welcoming as a church in all that we do. In His Service,

Pastor Roelof