Saturday, June 20, 2020

Exploring Race and Finding Jesus (2020.06.20 Pastoral Letter and Hopewell Herald)

Hopewell Herald – June 20, 2020

Dear Congregation,

It’s amazing to think that the Eternal, Blessed, only True and Living God has made us in His image! Certainly, this is one of the truths that is most under attack in our day.

In our studies together, the Lord has woven together for us Genesis 28:10–22 (and God’s promise to be with believers) with Ephesians 2–3 (and God’s eternal plan to unite all believers as a dwelling place for Himself in Christ) and Revelation 21:1–8 (and God’s dwelling place being with man).

At the heart of each of these is Jesus Christ as our Immanuel, God-with-us.

The days of the fallen creation are numbered, because God’s “Plan-A” has always been to unite all things in Christ unto His glory in a New Heavens and New Earth.

Though we are one race in Adam, that race is now in rebellion against God and therefore hatred toward one another. But God has given Christ not only as our Immanuel, but also as the last Adam, in Whom there is a new, redeemed race.

Believers are reconciled to God and reconciled to one another. When we are commanded to love one another, we are not trying to produce something new, but rather embracing and living something that is already a reality in Christ, as we battle against and kill whom we were in Adam.

Tomorrow morning in the class (10 a.m.), we are beginning our mini-series on topics that arise out of current events. The first topic will be “race” and “racism,” which I hope will enable us to think and speak clearly at a time where the culture and much of the church either doesn’t know what to think or even is actively embracing utter nonsense.

More than that, I hope that we will see the great privilege that God has given us to be created in His image, and the even greater privilege of being redeemed and re-created into His image in Christ!

Looking forward to doing so with you,

LORD'S DAY – June 21, 2020

9:50 a.m. Breakfast Line Opens
10 a.m. Bible Class
This week, we’re beginning a series on topics related to important issues that people around us are talking much about right now, beginning this week with what Holy Scripture teaches us about “race.”

11 a.m. Public Worship
Children’s Catechism for June 21
Q34. Did Adam act for himself alone in the covenant of works? A. No; he represented all his posterity.

Shorter Catechism for June 21
Q42. What is the sum of the ten commandments? A. The sum of the ten commandments is to love the Lord our God with all our heart, with all our soul, with all our strength, and with all our mind; and our neighbor as ourselves.

Psalms and Hymns
TPH381 “Blessing and Honor and Glory and Power”   
ARP104A “My Soul, Bless the Lord” 
TPH164 “God Himself Is with Us”

Scripture Text for first portion of worship service

Scripture Readings
Old Testament – 1Samuel 10:17–27
Epistle – Ephesians 3:7–9
Gospel – Luke 6:12–19

Sermon Scripture text and topic
We will be hearing from Genesis 28:10–22 about the Lord who is with His people more than they will ever realize, even when they are forgetful of what they do know.

12:45 p.m. Coffee Fellowship and Catechism Class

1 p.m. Fellowship Lunch & Open Mic Time
There will be plenty for everyone, but as with breakfast, those who are uncomfortable eating from the line are encouraged to bring their own food that they keep separate.

At open mic time, we’ll begin with birthdays and anniversaries and recitations of the memory verse:
(Genesis 28:12–13) Then he dreamed, and behold, a ladder was set up on the earth, and its top reached to heaven; and there the angels of God were ascending and descending on it. And behold, the LORD stood above it and said: “I am the LORD God of Abraham your father and the God of Isaac; the land on which you lie I will give to you and your descendants."

2:30 p.m Psalm/hymn Sing
Carryover song requests from last week:
Red: 463, 446, 429, 153
(if you wish to make this week’s requests in advance, please feel free to reply to this email, and let me know!)

3:30 p.m. P.M. exhortation from Ephesians 3:7–9

Hopewell this Month

Hopewell’s Presbytery Prayer Focus for June:
Prosperity ARP in Taft, TN

June Psalm of the Month
ARP104A My Soul, Bless the Lord

Upcoming Events
•June 24, Prayer Meeting, 6:30 p.m.
•July 18, Men’s Breakfast, 6:30 a.m.
•July 20, Monthly Session Meeting, 6 p.m.
•August 30, Sermon to “launch” class series on delighted consecration of the Lord’s holy day
•September 13, Lord’s Day series begins in the Sabbath school
•October 2-4, HARPC 200th Anniversary Celebration

It’s already time to start planning our 200th Anniversary Conference! If you are willing to join the planning/preparation committee, please contact Charlie Mangum.

Congregational Prayer Requests (new/updates in bold)
▪ Alan McClelland and his ministry at Ft. Rucker
▪ Repentance of the Church and the Nations for general rejection of the Kingship of Christ
▪ Comfort and provision for the LeeAnn Billings family as they grieve, especially for new work, as the university just eliminated her position from the department
▪ Pray for the Jeffers family, whose granddaughter Isabelle (14) and then her mother Norma both attempted suicide; there’s a long way to go medically, financially, and especially spiritually for all involved; please keep praying for them and for Sue’s ministry to them
Pray for Rebecca Sterling, whose condition seems to be deteriorating again, and who would like to not end up back in the nursing home
▪ Pray with D&L L for her 85yo mother and her heart issues
▪ Pray with KC for her acquaintance Linda who doesn’t seem to know the Lord, and just lost 21 year old son; and, for her dear friends who need to live a life of faith and devotion to the Lord; and for friend Patty, a believer, that she will continue to do well after treatment for uterine cancer
▪ Pray with D&M G that her mother would continue healing well and not smoking; for Sean; for Jeremiah and Julianna
▪ Pray with W&C G for her mother’s health and caregivers; and for spiritual (and total) well-being of son Greg
▪ PRAISE with J&H H for his father’s recovery from open-heart surgeries, pray for his father’s cancer; for sweetness in his parents’ remaining time together; for his youngest brother, and the same brother’s son (with CP, recovering from hip surgery on the 17th) and daughter
▪ Pray with R&M J for Meredith, young daughter of M’s college friend Ashely (and husband Brad), who’s taking medicine to shrink her brain tumor; and for Meredeth and baby, due in January
▪ Pray with O&A L for her unbelieving mother w/heart condition, and her family’s grieving over her brother
▪ Pray with CM for friend Michael Duval and his recovery from knee surgery
▪ Pray with C&T P for the conversion of her brother Todd; and for her dad and family in the loss of his wife Jolene
▪ Pray with AR for friend Caleb Figura w/mysterious but debilitating gut illness
▪ Pray with D&K R for their family’s growth in godliness, especially dying to self, godly speech, and Lord’s Day keeping; for Micah, Rachel, and baby girl due in July; and for local pastor/constable Darryl Thrasher, who has an aggressive, malignant brain tumor
▪ Pray with GR for friend Abby to come to faith in Christ
▪ Pray with JeR for believing friend Jeanette Cary’s CHF, Fibromyalgia, & slow-healing wound
▪ Pray with J&M R for baby Bentley, and their family’s adjustment and future with him
▪ Pray with J&S R for her nephew, who needs life in Christ; and for her and her family in the loss of her father, especially spiritual impact on her sisters and nephews; PRAISE for the healthy birth of sister Rebecca’s daughter, Natalia Maria De La Torre; and for his whole family, and especially his mother, as they grieve the passing away of his father; and sister Kathy, who just lost her husband.
▪ Pray with S&V Y for his parents and siblings as they deal with his father’s declining health and his mother’s dementia
▪ Please pray with Prosperity ARP in Taft, TN, throughout the month of June
▪ Please pray for the TN-AL Presbytery to be enabled to plant a faithful church with the resources available and earmarked for that purpose
▪ Please pray for all ARP presbyteries, churches, and agencies
▪ Please pray for our nation, state, community and all the officials thereof 

Prayer, with thanksgiving, being one special part of religious worship, is by God required of all men: and, that it may be accepted, it is to be made in the name of the Son, by the help of his Spirit, according to his will, with understanding, reverence, humility, fervency, faith, love, and perseverance; and, if vocal, in a known tongue. (WCF 21.3)

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