One of the challenges that the 480,000 people who fled from civil war in South Sudan face as they find refuge in Ethiopian refugee camps is that they have no Bibles. They have none because they ran from their homes for their very lives!
In an attempt to redress this, APWM has launched an appeal for Bibles, aiming to reach a target of 33,000 Bibles in the Nuer language at a cost of $330,000 (ie $10 per Bible)! In the last few weeks, we are pleased to have donated 123 Bibles to this appeal…small, we know, but when joined with the gifts of many other Presbyterian congregations, not an insignificant amount. Like to contribute to this appeal? Follow this link here.
In 2 Samuel 13:1-39, the text records some dark events that happened in David’s family. While the chapter sets the scene for Absalom’s eventual rebellion against his father, it also portrays the reality of the consequences of David’s sin in chapter 11 being revealed in his own family. It’s a sad tale, but also a much needed cautionary warning.
We were pleased today to be able to welcome Rev Kevin Murray, the National Director of Australian Presbyterian World Mission (APWM) to our gathering this morning.
Thank you Kevin for coming and sharing God’s Word with us, encouraging us with news of how God is using APWM workers all across the globe and challenging us to be busy with the gospel at home and support those who have been called to distant places.
You can read about the wider ministries of APWM here.
When God called his people out of Egypt, Exodus 19:1-6 tells us that he did so for a purpose. Not only so the Messiah would come from their ranks, but so that Israel might be His people reflecting His nature to the world, thus showing the world how great He is. Peter picks up on this theme in 1 Peter 2:9-10, reminding God’s people today that we are His people, on earth to declare the wonders of His Name to the world.
When the would-be king, David, was spurned by the foolish Nabal in 1 Samuel 25:1-44, he saw red. In his anger, David made up his mind to put an end to Nabal’s life. If it wasn’t for the actions of Nabal’s wife, Abigail (who in some small way points us to Jesus), David would have fallen into serious sin. Anger does that, which is why the Bible teaches that we should ‘be angry’, but ‘do not sin.’ (Ephesians 4:30)
On Saturday night July 15th we’re getting together in the hall starting with dinner together at 5:30pm. We’ll enjoy the company of some special friends, maybe even play some fun games together, hear the latest on church planting and growth in Nepal and of course, eat! It’s a bring and share arrangement (like we do for lunch), mains and dessert. Extra points to you if you can cook up something Nepali style. It won’t be a late night so bring the family! And… it will be warm in the hall! (And yes, that is the flag of Nepal on the left!)
Balance is so necessary in all of life, even and especially our theology which leads to daily practice. If our witness for Christ is to be effective and fruitful, 2 John 1-13 reminds us that truth and love need to be balanced. If not, the world will never hear waht we have to say, nor will they notice the reality of Christ in our lives.
When David sinned in 2 Samuel 11, he set of a chain of events that would prove to be disastrous for his family, including the son born as a result of his alliance with Bathsheba. The text of 2 Samuel 12:15-31 records how the child died, but also how God’s grace was revealed in the midst of the mess that his sin created.
The book of Acts is clear. Not only did Jesus leave this earth (as recorded in Acts 1:1-11), before he left He gave some particular instructions to His disciples to carry out. There were to be His witnesses in ‘Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria and the ends of the earth.’ That was a long time ago, though. Do His words still mean anything for God’s people today?
One thing that the world constantly fails to understand is the seriousness of sin. It is rarely spoken of as something serious and usually only spoken of as if it were something light and easily cast off. The text of 2 Samuel 12:1-15 indicates that sin is not something that can be laughed at. David’s sin was terrible, but equally so, God’s grace to him was amazing. The more we understand how serious sin is, the more we will appreciate the wonder of the gospel.