Birthdays and Anniversaries:
5-22 Sam Pirozzo
5-25 Eleuterio & Lidia Oviedo
Darlyne Stewart, Karl’s sister, her cancer seems to be under control for the moment.
Shirley Weeks, Steve’s mom, is not well.
Sharon Best, Steven’s mom, still taking treatments for her pancreatic cancer.
Sarah, Chris Girvin’s sister, on hospice care
Eleuterio Oviedo recovering from knee replacement surgery
Doris Coley, regular listener, also recovering from knee surgery.
Robert and Sue Waller, health issues.
Darla Nitti, Wendi’s mom, stage 4 kidney disease, stroke. New living situation!
Leta, has a recurring cancer, prayer request from her granddaughter via our website.
Tammy Jones, Weeks’ neighbor, kidney failure/dialysis
Jessie Phillips, friend of the Weeks’, heart attack, one stint
Sympathy: Our condolences to the family of Sandy Pryor. She passed away last Sunday and services were held Friday at Laurel Oaks. Please keep Buddy and family in your prayers.
If we compare man-made religions with Christianity, a stark contrast emerges. Christianity exhibits non-human characteristics. People did not dream this up.
For starters, let’s roll the clock back to the ancient Mesopotamian religions. At that time humans thought they sustained the gods by offering sacrifices. The Sumerians even believed their purpose involved saving the gods from having to work.
Reflecting a similar theme, the Akkadians claimed that the gods discovered just how dependent they were upon humanity after having decimated the human population with plagues and flood. The Mesopotamians were not unique.
Fast forward to the Greco-Roman culture of Paul’s day. Standing on the Aeropagus, Paul contrasted prevalent Roman notions regarding gods with the Creator of heaven and earth. “He is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything, because he himself gives life and breath and everything to everyone” (Acts 17:25).
Contrary to human thinking requiring humanity to first establish moral or spiritual merit before the divine acts, God is the initiator and provider.
- God sends sunshine and rain upon all. Matthew 5:45
- God provides for our physical needs and well being. Matthew 6:31-33; 1 Timothy 6:17
- God has provided everything we need to be spiritually blessed. Ephesians 2:4-7; 2 Peter 1:3
- God even provides these spiritual blessings to the worst of sinners. 1 Timothy 1:15-16
- God assembles Christians into a community that serves as his temple in which he dwells. Ephesians 2:21-22
- And when we offer to God spiritual sacrifices, God has even provided the means for our sacrifices to be acceptable to him!
You yourselves, as living stones, are built up as a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood and to offer spiritual sacrifices that are acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 2:5
When people create a religious system, people don’t envision God graciously providing for all of our needs. Nor do they suggest that all of God’s provisions are offered to even the worst examples of humanity. Regardless of one’s past, the riches of God’s love remain available to those outside of Christ until they die.
Barry Newton, link to original article