Happy Monday, September 30, 2019 church!

September 30, 2019 | Categories: Church Blog.

Brothers and sisters,

Happy Monday to all! We had a good day of worship and fellowship yesterday.  It was wonderful to be able to worship the great and only God of the universe and think about His faithfulness, His very essence, and His glory and might. We then looked from Matthew 18 about a very serious and grave subject.  We saw how it is every believers’ responsibility to seek to restore those who are straying.  Matthew 18 tells us to go to a person who is straying and speak to them face to face before we go to anyone else.  If face to face meetings don’t bring about a restoration, we are to take two or three other neutral people who walk with God and have spiritual discernment and go again to the brother or sister who is straying.  If, after going with a small group, there is no returning to the Lord, we are to take this to the congregation.  If the person still does not listen and return to the Lord, we are, as Jesus said, “let him be to us as a Gentile and tax collector.”  We learned even this drastic step, along with all the previous steps, was meant to restore the person back to fellowship with the Lord and His people. Why is this true?  It is true because a person who refuses to turn from sin has something desperately wrong in their life.  Sometimes, it can mean the person who does not repent has not been saved from sin.  If you are not saved and then continually being saved from sin, you are not saved. The drastic step is to cause the person to see the destruction and deadliness of unrepentant sin and realize that he or she probably either does not know the Lord and needs salvation, or that there is something desperately wrong in their walk with God. It is our responsibility to search for the straying little ones and do all we can to restore them to the Lord and His church.     

The ladies Bible study of Philippians continues Wednesday evenings at 6:30 PM.  If you have any questions, contact Carla. 

Midvale Baptist Church has invited anyone to a WMU event at their church on Saturday, October 5 from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM. D’anna Shotts, missionary to Nigeria, will be speaking.  If you are interested in attending, let me know so I can let them to know to help them plan for lunch on that Day.

On Sunday evening, October 13, we will have hymn sing, sharing of testimonies and campfire beginning at 6:00 PM.  The last time we did this, it was a wonderful time of worship, sharing and getting to know each other.  I hope you will make plans to attend.   

Love being your pastor!

Bob Ray, Pastor, East Madison Baptist Church

Happy Monday, September 23, 2019 church!

September 23, 2019 | Categories: Church Blog.

Sisters and brothers,

Happy Monday to all! As we worshipped through singing and celebrating the Lord’s Supper, we focused on the great grace and mercy of God.  God demonstrated this great grace and mercy to us in the sacrifice of Jesus. Jesus willingly gave His life on the cross so anyone who will believe in Jesus could be forgiven and given eternal life.  How great is the God who has saved and redeemed us!  We then considered from Matthew 17 and 18 how important the little ones are to Jesus.  Little ones include children, people no one may care about, and those whom others look down on and despise.  These little ones are valued and loved by Jesus.  We ourselves are among those little ones! Also, we are to care for the little ones.  Jesus calls us to be like the little ones in childlike humility and dependence.  Jesus calls us receive the little ones and to protect the little ones from things that cripple them.  And sometimes, Jesus calls us to search for the little ones when they go astray.  Jesus call us to embrace childlike dependence and humility toward Him.  Jesus calls us to continually love and care for the little ones among us. 

We will be having a potluck luncheon following our morning worship next Sunday, September 29. Bring enough food to feed your family and a little extra for our guests.

The ladies will begin the second half of their study of Philippians this Wednesday evening, September 25 at 6:30 PM.  If you have any questions, contact Carla. 

Midvale Baptist Church has invited anyone to a WMU event at their church on Saturday, October 5 from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM. D’anna Shotts, missionary to Nigeria, will be speaking.  If you are interested in attending, let me know so I can let them to know to help them plan for lunch on that Day.    

Love being your pastor!

Bob Ray, Pastor, East Madison Baptist Church

Happy Monday, September 16, 2019 church!

September 16, 2019 | Categories: Church Blog.

Brothers and sisters,

Happy Monday to all! Yesterday we thought about the greatness of God and seeing Him through the eyes of faith.  Our worship team led us in singing about His glory and greatness.  The chorus to “Behold, Our God,” invited us to: 

Behold our God seated on His throne
Come, let us adore Him
Behold our King—nothing can compare
Come, let us adore Him.

The message from Matthew 17 helped us to see that from time to time glimpses of Jesus’ glory reveal what we will experience eternally as we live forever with Jesus.  Too often we simply focus on serving God in this life for what we may seemingly get out of that now instead of serving Him because we love Him and want to live for His glory.  What happens if a child or spouse die or if a horrific crime is committed against us or someone we love.  There are tragedies and events that happen in this life that will never make sense on this side of eternity.  These kind of tragedies will not fit into a shallow understanding of God’s goodness.  Only in the light of God’s ultimate triumph and destruction of evil when Jesus returns will some things be working to the good of those who love the Lord.  Because of this, we do need to continually remember to love God supremely and live with eternity in mind when evil is destroyed and where Christ reigns forever. 

The Church Council will meet Wednesday, September 18, at 6:30 PM.

We will be observing the Lord’s Supper in our morning worship next Sunday, September 22.

The ladies will begin the second half of their study of Philippians on Wednesday evening, September 25.  If you have any questions, contact Carla. 

Love being your pastor!

Bob Ray, Pastor, East Madison Baptist Church

Happy Monday, September 9, 2019 church!

September 9, 2019 | Categories: Church Blog.

Sisters and brothers,

Happy Monday to all! We had a good day yesterday as we considered from Matthew 16 the Savior who suffered for us and calls us to bear our own crosses and be willing to suffer for Him.  We see Jesus revealed as Messiah, but He is not the kind of Messiah most expected.  Jesus is Messiah who sacrificed and suffered for us.  Jesus suffered in our place so we could be forgiven and be counted righteous in God’s sight.  But that does not mean we will not suffer in this life.  In fact, suffering is a part of the human condition because all people suffer in this fallen world.  Also, there will be some suffering endured because we name the name of Jesus.  Jim Dennison pointed out that when we suffer or others suffer, we can question at times why God allows suffering.  But we can never accuse God of not understanding our suffering, because God the Son entered our suffering by becoming a human being.  Then, ultimately, Jesus knows our suffering as the One who suffered the humiliation and pain of the cross while dying so our sins can be forgiven.  Edward Shillito helped us see this in the poem he wrote, “Jesus of the Scars.”  He ends his poem with these words:

“The other gods were strong; but Thou wast weak;

They rode, but Thou didst stumble to a throne;

But to our wounds only God’s wounds can speak,

And not a god has wounds, but Thou alone.”

Ladies, you are invited to lunch at noon this Saturday, September 14 at the Daisy Café & Cupcakery, 2827 Atwood Avenue.  Contact Carla Ray for more details.

The ladies will begin the second half of their study of Philippians on Wednesday evening, September 25.   

Love being your pastor!

Bob Ray, Pastor, East Madison Baptist Church

Happy Tuesday, September 3, 2019 church!

September 3, 2019 | Categories: Church Blog.

Brothers and sisters,

Happy Tuesday to all! The worship team of two lead us in a wonderful time of worship and taught us a new song based on the Nicene Creed.  Thank you, Pete and Damon!  However, even though the two of you did an excellent job leading, we did miss all you other guys and gals on our creative worship team!  We are truly blessed by God for every member of our team and should not take them for granted.

As we looked at Matthew 16:1-12, we thought about the timeless truth to not allow our position, status, privilege or love of any sin to keep us from the love of Jesus.  We thought about the danger of raising questions just to question and seeking evidence that we do not intend to act on if we find that evidence, like the Pharisees and Sadducees did at the time of Christ.  They kept asking for signs but denied the miraculous signs and irrefutable teaching of Jesus that were right in front of their eyes.  It was not the lack of evidence that kept them from believing.  It was their own unwillingness to let go of their position, their status, their privilege, and their sins that kept them from believing.   If anything keeps you from knowing, experiencing, and living in the love of Jesus, you have traded your soul for some worthless scrap!    

The ladies will begin the second half of their study of Philippians on Wednesday evening, September 25.  If you have any questions, contact Carla. 

We will be starting a membership class this Sunday, September 8.  This class is designed to help understand what church membership at East Madison is about.  It will last four to five weeks and be held during our Bible Study times on Sunday morning at 9:30 AM.  Adults and older youth are invited to join us.  The class is for those new to East Madison or those who simply want to explore what we are all about.  I will be teaching the class so feel free to contact me with any question about the class. Some  have informed me of their interest, but, even if you haven’t, you can just show up.  We will meet in the classroom down by the restrooms.

Love being your pastor!

Bob Ray, Pastor, East Madison Baptist Church