Elder’s Corner

Each quarter of the year, there is an extra message written by one of the elders.

These are included in the “Labor of Love” publication which can be picked up at the church. The “Labor of Love” publication is not included on the website because it’s contents concern mainly topics that are relevant to current members.

The Elder’s Corner section is included on the website because it’s content is relevant to a much wider array of people.
Below is the current Elder’s Corner. God bless.


October, November, and December 2020


LOVE… THE SUPREME ETHIC

“Yes, if truth is not undergirded by love, it makes the possessor of that
truth obnoxious and the truth repulsive.”
― Ravi Zacharias

While we, as believers, have been given great latitude, by our
Heavenly Father, to choose how we live out our lives, there are certain
limitations bound up in that loving relationship… In that “choosing,” we
have NOT been given a license to sin. In that “choosing,” we
CANNOT violate the conscience of another. In that “choosing,” we are
to consider OTHERS more valuable than ourselves… just as Jesus
Christ demonstrated on the cross of Calvary.

There is a fine line to walk as a Christian, who carries about in
him the very truth of God’s revelation… another choice has to be made
– how do WE demonstrate His love?

Our culture is very different from even ten or twenty years ago.
No longer does Christian dogma rule the day. No longer do a majority
of Americans consider their faith a top priority. (According to a Barna
study-2006… 51% prioritize family over faith at 16%). And I assure
you, 14 years later, those numbers have gravitated towards the
opposite poles with many other intrusions into our daily walk.

I cite these numbers to let you know, that simply living out your
faith can be unsettling to most and oft times, very offensive. It will
likely not garner you any new friends and can be met with outright
derision should you even offer slight pushback against our cultural ills.
Does this mean we shy away from telling the truth or sharing the
gospel? Heaven forbid! We would be derelict in our calling as
disciples of Jesus Christ if we were to capitulate and follow in the
direction of an apostate culture.

I, for one, am not one for shying away from those who would
abuse the truth. I’ve said it more than once, that Pastor Bob asked if
I’d play the part of Peter in our Easter pageant for a REASON!
But I have learned that zeal is a good thing, in the right doses and at
the appropriate time. I have NOT always chosen wisely in this
arena…. I hope you have had better success, than I, in this area.

As I began this page, truth, not undergirded by love, makes the
possessor of that truth, obnoxious and repulsive. Christ did not call us
to carry a sledgehammer to deliver the “Good News.” I dare say,
Christ’s own have given Him more black eyes and done more damage
to His divine message than all of the charlatans and wannabes in
recent memory. What better way to drive unbelievers and believers
alike, further away from the truth and entering into worship of the one
true King?

We are to come to God, as it says in James 4:8, “Draw near to
God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners
and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” (All of chapter four is
good for crushing one’s own toes! Read at your leisure).

Any “problems” I see within or without the Church, before I go
and call it out, I first need to take a long, hard look in the mirror… lest I
become a monumental hypocrite. Change is going to begin within
each of us… pondering the intents’ of our hearts. Humility must be a
hallmark of the Christian. Some will consider this humbleness as a
sign of weakness. However, we are called to be meek, NOT weak. It is
“meekness,” not, “weakness.” We are to demonstrate God’s power
UNDER CONTROL!

Quoting from another article by Ravi Zacharias, ““Years ago,
J.H. Oldham wrote in his book Life Is Commitment, “There are some
things in life, and they may be the most important things, that we
cannot know by research or reflection, but only by committing
ourselves. We must DARE in order to KNOW. Life is full of situations
to which I can respond NOT with part of myself but only with
commitment of my WHOLE being.”

And committing ourselves, I would add, is the essential
component of loving God, which in turn overflows in worship. What
commitment COSTS, DETERMINES what it BRINGS. Only a
commitment lived out understands what love means.”” (Emphasis
mine)

To that end… we need to ask ourselves… am I fully
committed? Am I willing to pay what it costs to be a follower of
Christ? Have I humbled myself? Have I represented the truth in
Christ-like fashion? Or am I so consumed by being “right,” I have
wronged my brothers and sisters?

“Love,” it IS the supreme ethic. From creation to Revelation
and into eternity… the purity and moral perfection of our Father in
Heaven has been demonstrated through His Son and is supposed
to be demonstrated by His Church.

“Love is the supreme ethic. Where there is the possibility of
love, there must be the reality of free will. Where there is the reality
of free will, there will inevitably be the possibility of sin. Where
there is sin, there is the need for a Savior. Where there is a Savior,
there is the hope for redemption.” – R.Z.

Do not lose heart, friends… we have and serve a mighty
Savior! We are His chosen vessels for such a time as this! Let us
sing this truth with ALL of our being…

“Redeemed, how I love to proclaim it!
Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb;
Redeemed through His infinite mercy,
His child and forever I am!”

May the Lord bless you and keep you by His grace and may our
final quarter of this year bring an unveiling, to ALL of us, of who we
can truly be in Christ as we renew our commitment to Him!
And whatever we do, in thought, word or deed, let us lead out in
love!

To God Be the Glory!
Elder
Brian L. Bailey