ABUSE & VIOLENCE IN THE CHURCH

SSB Sunday Gathering – February 3, 2019

Spiritual Sounding Board – This is your place to gather and share in an open format.

-by Kathi

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Scripture is taken from the Book of Common Prayer, Readings for Epiphany and Ordinary Time Until Lent, Year 1 and may be found here.

Psalm 24

The earth is the Lord’s, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it; for he founded it on the seas and established it on the waters.

Who may ascend the mountain of the Lord? Who may stand in his holy place? The one who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not trust in an idol or swear by a false god.

They will receive blessing from the Lord and vindication from God their Savior. Such is the generation of those who seek him, who seek your face, God of Jacob.

Lift up your heads, you gates; be lifted up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. Who is this King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle. Lift up your heads, you gates; lift them up, you ancient doors, that the King of glory may come in. Who is he, this King of glory? The Lord Almighty — he is the King of glory.

Isaiah 51: 9 – 16

Awake, awake, arm of the Lord, clothe yourself with strength! Awake, as in days gone by, as in generations of old. Was it not you who cut Rahab to pieces, who pierced that monster through? Was it not you who dried up the sea, the waters of the great deep, who made a road in the depths of the sea so that the redeemed might cross over? Those the Lord has rescued will return. They will enter Zion with singing, everlasting joy will crown their heads. Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away.

“I, even I, am he who comforts you. Who are you that you fear mere mortals, human beings who are but grass, that you forget the Lord your Maker, who stretches out the heavens and who lays the foundations of the earth, that you live in constant terror every day because of the wrath of the oppressor, who is bent on destruction? For where is the wrath of the oppressor? The cowering prisoners will soon be set free; they will not die in their dungeon, nor will they lack bread. For I am the Lord your God, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar — the Lord Almighty is his name. I have put my words in your mouth and covered you with the shadow of my hand — I who set the heavens in place, who laid the foundations of the earth, and who say to Zion, ‘You are my people.’”

Hebrews 11: 8 – 16

By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God. And by faith even Sarah, who was past childbearing age, was enabled to bear children because she considered him faithful who had made the promise. And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore.

All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance, admitting that they were foreigners and strangers on earth. People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. Instead, they were longing for a better country — a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.

John 7: 14 – 31

Not until halfway through the festival did Jesus go up to the temple courts and begin to teach. The Jews there were amazed and asked, “How did this man get such learning without having been taught?”

Jesus answered, “My teaching is not my own. It comes from the one who sent me. Anyone who chooses to do the will of God will find out whether my teaching comes from God or whether I speak on my own. Whoever speaks on their own does so to gain personal glory, but he who seeks the glory of the one who sent him is a man of truth; there is nothing false about him. Has not Moses given you the law? Yet not one of you keeps the law. Why are you trying to kill me?”

“You are demon-possessed,” the crowd answered. “Who is trying to kill you?”

Jesus said to them, “I did one miracle, and you are all amazed. Yet, because Moses gave you circumcision (though actually it did not come from Moses, but from the patriarchs), you circumcise a boy on the Sabbath. Now if a boy can be circumcised on the Sabbath so that the law of Moses may not be broken, why are you angry with me for healing a man’s whole body on the Sabbath? Stop judging by mere appearances, but instead judge correctly.”

At that point some of the people of Jerusalem began to ask, “Isn’t this the man they are trying to kill? Here he is, speaking publicly, and they are not saying a word to him. Have the authorities really concluded that he is the Messiah? But we know where this man is from; when the Messiah comes, no one will know where he is from.”

Then Jesus, still teaching in the temple courts, cried out, “Yes, you know me, and you know where I am from. I am not here on my own authority, but he who sent me is true. You do not know him, but I know him because I am from him and he sent me.”

At this they tried to seize him, but no one laid a hand on him, because his hour had not yet come. Still, many in the crowd believed in him. They said, “When the Messiah comes, will he perform more signs than this man?”

***

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May the peace of the Lord Christ go with you: wherever he may send you;

may he guide you through the wilderness: protect you from the storm;

may he bring you home rejoicing: at the wonders he has shown you;

may he bring you home rejoicing: once again into our doors.

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Feel free to join the discussion.

You can share your church struggles and concerns.

Let’s also use it as a time to encourage one another spiritually.

What have you found spiritually encouraging lately?

Do you have any special Bible verses to share, any YouTube songs that you have found uplifting?

Photo credit: Kathi

4 thoughts on “SSB Sunday Gathering – February 3, 2019”

  1. Psalm 24…”Who may ascend the mountain of the LORD? Who may stand in His Holy place? The one who has clean hands and a pure heart, who does not trust in an idol or swear by a false god.”

    So rich in the fact that our LORD speaks truth. I had the opportunity to hike to the top of a mountain last Sunday morn, gasping for breath at the mountain top. It was peaceful as no one was in my presence accept for my LORD Jesus Christ. As I sang hymns and psalms of praise, my soul was at peace and rest in Him, for no one, not one single human soul was around me……and I was Blessed beyond human comprehension. God, the Holy Spirit, led me in worship and awe of Him, and there were no human religious requirements chained to me, but in fact, complete freedom and liberty as I sang and worshiped to the Heavens (me LORD Jesus Christ.)

    And then as I left the mountain, our LORD place in front of me brother Paul, who was another unc’hurched believer in Jesus Christ. With his coffee in hand, huffing and puffing from the mountain climb, he shared with me his testimony, how God spoke to him in getting his wife and his newborn baby (a day old) out of the hospital a couple of days early to flee from hurricane Katrina. The hospital said they were not going to release his wife and baby, and he said that they were leaving immediately for their safety. The next day the hurricane hit flooded their home as they were hundreds of miles into safety. The Red Cross gave them money and vouchers to set up a new life in a safer place to raise their family, far from the flood plains of New Orleans…….and to top off his testimony…..he gushed and gushed over the amazing woman he married.

    Thank-you Kathi,for the wonderful fellowship you provided for us here at SSB. I find it refreshing and amazing how God, the Holy Spirit, works in His sheep in giving us the right Word at just the right time in ministering to us saints.

    I am forever humbled by His Word and the testimony of His humble sheep. Glory to our LORD Jesus, the Living Christ Who Saves!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Dear Kathi,
    I keep pondering your photograph in my mind, with a smile engraved in me heart. I want you to know what an amazing photographer you are, as I dabble a little in trying to become a mediocre photographer meself, with me cheap camera. Our daughter is a trained and accomplished photographer in her own right (I have her art on me walls in our home), so I appreciate God given talent when I see it.

    The pictures you post here, just want me to Praise Him even more, so PLEASE keep posting the amazing views that you see in your every day life…..as it brings cheer to me heart and gives me more Hope that Jesus desires us to appreciate the beauty of His creation.

    This particular pic reminds me of the South Dakota Badlands, which I love as well! Where was this scene taken? It would be a joy to travel these lands one day as “soil colors” fascinate me to no end.

    1 Corinthians 10:31………Praising our LORD for the simple things that bring us joy!

    Keep that camera battery charged Kath, as your God-given talents are much appreciated.

    Abundant Blessings to you, gifted individual of our LORD Jesus Christ! 🙂

    Like

  3. I agree, Katy! Kathi is a very gifted photographer. Kathi, I think you should post some of your recent cute llama pics. I so enjoyed those. They put a smile on my face!

    Like

  4. I agree Julie Anne! “Llama’s are Lovely!” Just go for it…..we could all benefit from shared smiles! 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

    Like

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