The Weekly Message

June 5, 2016
05 Jun 2016

This week our sermon was on the subject of compassion. In the reading from Luke, when Jesus sees the woman who has lost her only son he does not walk past but acts to give him back to her. The miracle is in giving back life – something Jesus did on more than one occasion – but it is his reason for his doing so that shows something of his and God’s character.

Today when we see news of war, suffering or displaced people how many times do we just switch off? How easy is it to turn our backs on those in need for our own selfish reasons or just through lack of thought? It doesn’t have to be a World issue – what about that lonely neighbour who might be cheered by a smile or friendly word? Jesus would not turn his back so let us join him in showing compassion as we would like it to be shown to us if the tables were turned. Only by going out and walking in the footsteps of the Lord will we begin to make a change for the better.

Luke 7:11-17
Jesus Raises a Widow’s Son

11 Soon afterward, Jesus went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd went along with him. 12 As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out—the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the town was with her. 13 When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said, “Don’t cry.”

14 Then he went up and touched the bier they were carrying him on, and the bearers stood still. He said, “Young man, I say to you, get up!” 15 The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother.

16 They were all filled with awe and praised God. “A great prophet has appeared among us,” they said. “God has come to help his people.” 17 This news about Jesus spread throughout Judea and the surrounding country.

Our Weekly Message

May 29, 2016
29 May 2016

This week the theme of the service was South Africa and the great leader Nelson Mandela who brought the people together to unite his country after the dark days of apartheid. Even though his enemies had imprisoned him he forgave them and worked with them to remove hatred and division and build a country where all would be equally welcome.

Apartheid in South Africa is gone but there remain many other evils; poverty, injustice, racism and greed and there are leaders who would exploit these to their own ends and create a society that is divided. The great leaders are those who lead with humility and promote equality, harmony and peace rather than war and division. In the reading Jesus comments that the Centurion  has great faith in Him despite being a Roman and not one of the Jews. Faith in Jesus is not dependent on race or standing – the Kingdom of God is open equally to all who have faith and follow his teaching.

Tim told us about a service in South Africa where there was singing and dancing during the collection so we did the same this morning and danced in the aisles to the song We are Marching -  an uplifting experience!

Luke 7-10
The Faith of the Centurion

7 When Jesus had finished saying all this to the people who were listening, he entered Capernaum. 2 There a centurion’s servant, whom his master valued highly, was sick and about to die. 3 The centurion heard of Jesus and sent some elders of the Jews to him, asking him to come and heal his servant. 4 When they came to Jesus, they pleaded earnestly with him, “This man deserves to have you do this, 5 because he loves our nation and has built our synagogue.” 6 So Jesus went with them.

He was not far from the house when the centurion sent friends to say to him: “Lord, don’t trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. 7 That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed. 8 For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.”

9 When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, “I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel.” 10 Then the men who had been sent returned to the house and found the servant well.

The Message for Trinity Sunday

May 22, 2016
22 May 2016

The message for Trinity Sunday was of the unity of Father, Son and Holy Spirit working together to guide us to the truth and to stop us straying too far from God’s chosen path. We always stray because we are human but he always guides us back to him. The idea of there being a fourth part to the Trinity was also mentioned; that fourth part being ourselves, whom God works through via his Holy Spirit and the teachings of his Son. All are interlinked and work to the same purpose. The Spirit is sometimes referred to as “The Spirit of Truth” and indeed if you read the papers or watch TV news it is apparent that there can be many different versions of an event but there is always only one truth.

In the reading Jesus declares that after he has left, the Spirit will continue to reveal the truth to his people so continuing his teaching until all is revealed.

John 16:12-15

12 “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. 13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. 14 He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you. 15 All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you.

Our Message at Pentecost

May 15, 2016
15 May 2016

At Pentecost the Holy Spirit came upon the disciples and empowered them to go out and preach the Word of the Lord to the crowd in many languages. When Peter preached immediately afterwards, around 3,000 people believed and were baptised which marked the beginning of Christianity as a purposeful movement and a new community. He said that God will pour out his Spirit on all people who accept and  believe in him regardless of race or nationality, uniting them as one church. Individuals can change lives but together we can change nations…

Acts 2 1-21
The Holy Spirit Comes at Pentecost

2 When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. 2 Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. 3 They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. 4 All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit enabled them.

5 Now there were staying in Jerusalem God-fearing Jews from every nation under heaven. 6 When they heard this sound, a crowd came together in bewilderment, because each one heard their own language being spoken. 7 Utterly amazed, they asked: “Aren’t all these who are speaking Galileans? 8 Then how is it that each of us hears them in our native language? 9 Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya near Cyrene; visitors from Rome 11 (both Jews and converts to Judaism); Cretans and Arabs—we hear them declaring the wonders of God in our own tongues!” 12 Amazed and perplexed, they asked one another, “What does this mean?”

13 Some, however, made fun of them and said, “They have had too much wine.”

Peter Addresses the Crowd

14 Then Peter stood up with the Eleven, raised his voice and addressed the crowd: “Fellow Jews and all of you who live in Jerusalem, let me explain this to you; listen carefully to what I say. 15 These people are not drunk, as you suppose. It’s only nine in the morning! 16 No, this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel:

17 “‘In the last days, God says, I will pour out my Spirit on all people. Your sons and daughters will prophesy, your young men will see visions, your old men will dream dreams. 18 Even on my servants, both men and women, I will pour out my Spirit in those days, and they will prophesy. 19 I will show wonders in the heavens above and signs on the earth below, blood and fire and billows of smoke. 20 The sun will be turned to darkness and the moon to blood before the coming of the great and glorious day of the Lord. 21 And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.’

Our Weekly Message

May 8, 2016
08 May 2016

In this passage from John, Jesus says that he is with not only those who he has himself given the message to but also those who they in turn have spoken to and who accept him as Lord and he seeks to bring all believers together as one before his Father. We also spoke about the Holy Trinity with the Father as the Creator, the Son as the Saviour and the Life Giving Holy Spirit existing together as one and working together to one purpose.

People were then asked to think of examples where three things or areas come together in this way. There were some funny ones – chocolate, nougat and caramel in a Mars Bar for example – but here’s one I like; the Earth we live on has the air, the land and the water. All are home to different forms of life that co-exist together yet none can work and support that life without the others.

We believe in one God; Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen

John 17:20-26
Jesus Prays for All Believers

20 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21 that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. 22 I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one— 23 I in them and you in me—so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.

24 “Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world.

25 “Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. 26 I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.”

Our Weekly Message

May 1, 2016
01 May 2016

Today the message was one of peace and what it means to people. In thie following passage Jesus tells us that the Holy Spirit will continue to teach us in the time before he returns and that in that time he leaves us his peace. Peace here is meant as freedom from fear and the troubled hearts brought on by worry. We all wrote down the things that cause us to worry and with Sue’s help, each made the paper into a dove to represent peace and freedom from that worry.

John 14:23-29

23 Jesus replied, “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them. 24 Anyone who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me.

25 “All this I have spoken while still with you. 26 But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. 27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

28 “You heard me say, ‘I am going away and I am coming back to you.’ If you loved me, you would be glad that I am going to the Father, for the Father is greater than I. 29 I have told you now before it happens, so that when it does happen you will believe.

Our Weekly Message

April 24, 2016
24 Apr 2016

Our service this week was on the theme of love. The reading was the passage below from John where Jesus says that to be recognised as his follower you must show the love to others that he has shown to us. Have a listen to the words of the song in the video – God is there for us, he looks out for us and has plans for us.

John 13:31-35

31 When he was gone, Jesus said, “Now the Son of Man is glorified and God is glorified in him. 32 If God is glorified in him, God will glorify the Son in himself, and will glorify him at once.

33 “My children, I will be with you only a little longer. You will look for me, and just as I told the Jews, so I tell you now: Where I am going, you cannot come.

34 “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

The Weekly Message

April 17, 2016
17 Apr 2016

This week the message was to listen, to hear and to follow.  When Jesus prayed alone he took instruction from the Father and put that instruction into action as his deeds on Earth. His true followers in turn listen to what he wants and follow the instructions in their own deeds. Sometimes we don’t act on what God wants because we doubt that the instruction came from God but that is how he guides us – we just need to listen. Here’s a short prayer to ask for God’s guidance in this way.

Lord – Renew my mind, Cleanse my heart, Fill my spirit. Amen

Also have a listen to the words of the song in the video.

John 10:22-30
Further Conflict Over Jesus’ Claims

22 Then came the Festival of Dedication at Jerusalem. It was winter, 23 and Jesus was in the temple courts walking in Solomon’s Colonnade. 24 The Jews who were there gathered around him, saying, “How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Messiah, tell us plainly.”

25 Jesus answered, “I did tell you, but you do not believe. The works I do in my Father’s name testify about me, 26 but you do not believe because you are not my sheep. 27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”

Our Weekly Message

April 10, 2016
10 Apr 2016

John 21.1-19
Jesus again appears to the disciples

21 After these things Jesus showed himself again to the disciples by the Sea of Tiberias; and he showed himself in this way. 2 Gathered there together were Simon Peter, Thomas called the Twin, Nathanael of Cana in Galilee, the sons of Zebedee, and two others of his disciples. 3 Simon Peter said to them, “I am going fishing.” They said to him, “We will go with you.” They went out and got into the boat, but that night they caught nothing. 4 Just after daybreak, Jesus stood on the beach; but the disciples did not know that it was Jesus. 5 Jesus said to them, “Children, you have no fish, have you?” They answered him, “No.” 6 He said to them, “Cast the net to the right side of the boat, and you will find some.” So they cast it, and now they were not able to haul it in because there were so many fish. 7 That disciple whom Jesus loved said to Peter, “It is the Lord!” When Simon Peter heard that it was the Lord, he put on some clothes, for he was naked, and jumped into the sea. 8 But the other disciples came in the boat, dragging the net full of fish, for they were not far from the land, only about a hundred yards off. 9 When they had gone ashore, they saw a charcoal fire there, with fish on it, and bread. 10 Jesus said to them, “Bring some of the fish that you have just caught.” 11 So Simon Peter went aboard and hauled the net ashore, full of large fish, a hundred fifty-three of them; and though there were so many, the net was not torn. 12 Jesus said to them, “Come and have breakfast.” Now none of the disciples dared to ask him, “Who are you?” because they knew it was the Lord. 13 Jesus came and took the bread and gave it to them, and did the same with the fish. 14 This was now the third time that Jesus appeared to the disciples after he was raised from the dead.

15 When they had finished breakfast, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my lambs.” 16 A second time he said to him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?” He said to him, “Yes, Lord; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Tend my sheep.” 17 He said to him the third time, “Simon son of John, do you love me?” Peter felt hurt because he said to him the third time, “Do you love me?” And he said to him, “Lord, you know everything; you know that I love you.” Jesus said to him, “Feed my sheep. 18 Very truly, I tell you, when you were younger, you used to fasten your own belt and to go wherever you wished. But when you grow old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will fasten a belt around you and take you where you do not wish to go.” 19 (He said this to indicate the kind of death by which he would glorify God.) After this he said to him, “Follow me.”



Our Weekly Message

April 3, 2016
03 Apr 2016

John 20:19-31
Jesus Appears to His Disciples

19 On the evening of that first day of the week, when the disciples were together, with the doors locked for fear of the Jewish leaders, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 20 After he said this, he showed them his hands and side. The disciples were overjoyed when they saw the Lord.

21 Again Jesus said, “Peace be with you! As the Father has sent me, I am sending you.” 22 And with that he breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive anyone’s sins, their sins are forgiven; if you do not forgive them, they are not forgiven.”

Jesus Appears to Thomas

24 Now Thomas (also known as Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples told him, “We have seen the Lord!”

But he said to them, “Unless I see the nail marks in his hands and put my finger where the nails were, and put my hand into his side, I will not believe.”

26 A week later his disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” 27 Then he said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”

28 Thomas said to him, “My Lord and my God!”

29 Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

The Purpose of John’s Gospel

30 Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not recorded in this book. 31 But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name.

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