Newsletter Archive

Newsletter May 12th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

As long as I am being controversial, I might as well go for two in a row. Again, I say, these are my own personal opinions and beliefs and do not necessarily represent Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church or its members. I was cutting a cantaloupe recently and had this thought, “I really believe that God wants His people to prosper”. [More about the cantaloupe later.]

Mention a Gospel where God wants His people to prosper and watch eyebrows rise and heads shake in some Christian circles. There is one group that seems to believe that the Lord wants His people to be poor and sick in order that they will be humble and spiritual. Look at all the poverty worldwide. If that group is correct, the world should be full of spiritual giants. It’s not happening, is it? Another group seems to imply that if we had enough faith we could all be multimillionaires and live in luxury. That doesn’t seem to be right either.

Personally, I believe there is a middle ground. It is a middle ground that includes prosperity plus spirituality. I believe that the Lord does want us to prosper. I believe He built prosperity into the very nature of the world He created. What did the Lord tell Adam and Eve, “Reproduce yourselves”? No! The Lord said, “Be fruitful and multiply”. [Genesis 1:28] Let’s examine some other verses. In Exodus 3:8 the Lord promises to take Israel to a “land flowing with milk and honey”. Deuteronomy 8:18 says, “But thou shalt remember the Lord thy God, for it is He that gives you the power to get wealth”.

Now, let’s get back to that cantaloupe. I cut it in half and needed a spoon to scoop out all the seeds. I did not count, but there seemed to be a hundred or more seeds. Suppose I planted all those seeds. Hundreds of cantaloupes would result. Then, suppose I planted all the seeds from that harvest. In a few years I could cover all the farmland in the county with cantaloupes. If the Lord did not want us to prosper, why not limit the number of seeds in each melon to two or three? Fruits like peaches only have one seed. However, each seed produces a tree which can have bushels of peaches. Plant all the seeds from each harvest and soon your orchard will cover the county. Is that not prosperity built into Creation?

It is not a question of “How much can I pile up?” The question is “What do I do with what I have?. Many of our heroes of faith were very prosperous [Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Job, David, Solomon, etc.] How did they use that prosperity? Abraham “paid tithes to the Priest, Melchizedek”. [Hebrews 7]. David used his vast wealth to provide the funds so that his son Solomon could erect that magnificent Temple in Jerusalem. [ 1 Chronicles 29] The person Jesus criticized was the man who prospered, but did not think of God or others. Instead he planned to tear down his barns and build even bigger storage areas so that he could selfishly hoard his great harvest. [Luke 12:16-21]

3 John 2 states, “Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper, and be in health, even as thy soul prospers.” The Lord wants us to prosper financially, physically, and spiritually. That is the balanced middle ground I mentioned. A prosperous soul spiritually will be able to handle financial prosperity to the glory of God. Remember Deuteronomy 8:18? God gives us “the power to get wealth”. Another part of that verse tells us why, “To establish His Covenant”. GOD BLESSES US IN ORDER THAT WE MIGHT BUILD HIS KINGDOM. No matter how much we are blessed, our goal should always be, “How can I help build the Kingdom of God?’ Personally, I have nice vehicles, clothes, house, but to me they are no big deal. [The last article of clothing I bought came from a Salvation Army Thrift Store. I can afford Belk’s, but I have better things to do with my money] My greatest joy each month is when I sit down, write my tithe check to Barbee’s Grove, and then write other checks to Ministries that are reaching people for Jesus.

Remember, prosperity looks different in various places of  the World. An American Pastor usually needs a car to fulfill his responsibilities. In other parts of the world, a prosperous Pastor is one who owns a bicycle. In some places, a prosperous church is one that has a metal roof instead of palm leaves. Probably would not work in the United States!!!

I encourage you to cooperate with the Lord’s creation. Learn to plant good seed in good, productive soil. Plant love, kindness, forgiveness, precious words about Jesus, and finances at every opportunity. Watch the Lord bring an abundant harvest into your life. The more He blesses, the more you can keep planting. [The more cantaloupes you harvest, the more seeds you have to plant.] A soul that is prospering spiritually will know when, where, what, and how much, to plant in every field.

HAPPY PLANTING AND HAPPY HARVESTING

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm.
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. May 26 and June 2
    5-7 pm Children and Youth
    5:30-6:30 pm Adult Church Training

The Lord loves a cheerful giver

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter May 5th

GREETINGS FROM REV. ED LOWDER ON THE BARBEE’S GROVE NETWORK

Please note the heading above. What you are about to read is my own personal opinion and belief. It does not reflect the official belief of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church, its Deacons, or its members. This week I feel really led of the Lord to write a strong word of prophecy. It will not be popular with many in our denomination. I totally realize that prophets often get “stoned”.  So, if you want to throw any rocks, throw them at me, and not at Barbee’s Grove or any of its members.

Why do I believe that I have a strong word from the Lord? It is because of the condition of our denominational churches [Baptists, Methodists, etc.] Over the past 50 years I have heard the cries of alarm: “Half of our churches are in decline. 7 out of 10 are in decline,” and the last number I read, “9 out of 10 are in decline”. We have lamented the decline and saw churches dying for years. We have tried various methods to “revitalize” those dying churches. Yet, the situation gets worse every year. Why? Because we will not acknowledge that faulty theology is the real reason for our problem.

Many of these churches will die quickly. Others will have a slow death as older members pass into Glory, the uncommitted cease attending, and the youth stay away as soon as their parents stop forcing them to attend. Some of these dying churches will combine with other dying churches. That will slow the death rate, but because of the spiritual sickness inherent in these churches, death is still sure to come. In order to maintain growth, some churches will become religious “Entertainment Centers”. Each week they will forsake the Gospel and put on a religious performance to draw a crowd. Sadly, we see other churches and denominations forsake the life changing Gospel. Christian Churches have always said, “No matter what your spiritual condition is, you are welcome. Come, let Jesus save you, and let His power transform you from sinner to saint”. Now they are saying, “Immoral, unGodly, agnostic, atheist, come on in. You do not need to change. God will take you to Heaven in your sinful, unbelieving condition”. In my opinion, that message would be a shock to the Apostle Paul [See Romans 1:16-32 and 1 Corinthians 6:9-15]

All the time, we are ignoring the real reason for our spiritual decline. Indeed, we celebrate the reason with Biblical “proof texts”. We are seeing the fulfillment of End Times Prophecy. Churches have become 2 Timothy 3:5 churches, “Having a form of Godliness but denying the power thereof”. Over the years, we have become so worldly, so carnal, so full of doubt and unbelief, that we have no spiritual power. We have “church” but God seldom shows up. In order to cover up our lack of power and in order to save ourselves the embarrassment of being spiritually weak, we have begun to explain it away by saying, “The Day of Miracles is Over. God no longer does miracles like He did in Bible days”. [Please don’t call me, or write me, quoting verses. I was taught them. I know them. I believed them, but not anymore.]

We are like a group sitting around an unlit fire pit. It’s cold and snowing. Everyone is shivering. Someone says, “I heard that once there was something called FIRE that helped in times like these”. Another person replies, “It may happen once in a while, but is not to be expected. The Day of FIRE is over. God doesn’t usually send FIRE anymore. We must sit here, covered in snow until we eventually freeze to death”.

What if we study some other Bible verses? Hebrews 13:8, “Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, and today, and forever”. Unless that verse is a lie, Jesus still does miracles just like He did 2000 years ago. Mark 16:14-20 promises all types of miraculous power in the lives of “Them that Believe”. There is no time limit or “Expiration Date” for “Them that Believe”. Hebrews 8:6 says that New Testament Believers have a “better covenant” with “better promises” than the Old Testament Saints had. The Old Testament is filled with miracles. If our New Testament Covenant is “better” we should experience greater and more miracles in our day. In John 14:12, Jesus Himself promised [to those who believe on HIm] “They shall do the works that I do and greater works because I go to My Father”. To me, It does not sound like Jesus expected the Day of Miracles to end before His Return.

We can have a pile of wood as big as a football field. But if there is no flame, there is no warmth. Friends, here is my prophetic word. We can attempt to “revitalize” our churches and continue to watch them die, or we can choose to believe in the God of the Bible, the miracle working God. We can stop making excuses and repent of our unbelief. When we begin to have true Bible faith the God of the Bible will appear in our midst. Dead and dying churches will come alive and will burst forth with God-given New Testament power and growth. May it be so!!!!

Unbelievers look at many of our churches and see them as glorified civic clubs. They aren’t interested. But when true believing faith brings God powerfully on the scene, and miracles happen, unbelievers always show up. Many of them soon desire to know personally that powerful Lord Jesus.
Call me a heretic if you wish. That is your choice. But I am tired of making excuses for a dying church. I choose to be a “Believer” and not a “Doubter”. Anyone interested in joining me?

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12;30 PM
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. May 5 
    5-7 Youth and Children
    5:30-6:30 Adult Church Training
  5. $ 1100 Final amount given for the Baptist Children’s Homes Spring Food Drive
    $ 2020 Final total for Annie Armstrong Offering for Home Missions
     THANK YOU FOR CARING AND GIVING  

Love in Jesus, our Lord

Rev. Ed Lowder    

Newsletter April 28th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

We welcome Mrs. Hanna Triplett into the Barbee’s Grove membership through the transfer of her church letter. Pray for her and her family as they join us in serving the Lord at Barbee’s Grove.

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Jesus said, “This is My commandment, that ye love one another as I have loved you”. [John 15:12] The Holy Spirit inspired the Apostle John to write, [1 John 3:17, 18] “But whoso hath this world’s goods, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him? My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue, but in deed and in truth”. Then, think of how the Believers met the needs of fellow Believers in the Book of Acts. [Acts 4:34-37]

Genuine Christianity leads to loving acts of ministry. May I share with you how this service is being demonstrated by  a Sunday School Class in one of our NC Baptist churches? I am acquainted with this church and know some of the class members.

The class became aware of a new younger couple in the community. The couple had several children, some with medical needs. The class began their ministry by taking meals to this family. They did it often. Class members soon realized that taking meals was not enough. As a result, when they dropped off a meal they would go in and do other acts of service. Some of that help involved working with the children, feeding them, holding them, etc. Children were being showered with love. It has now reached the point that, when these “Adoptive Grandparents” enter the house, the kids reach out their arms, wanting to be held. This family is being reached by the love of Jesus.

However, this ministry has continued to grow. The class realized that this young family also had financial needs because of the medical issues.Therefore, some of the class members had a discussion and made this commitment: For a year, the class would cover some of those financial needs. Each week, those who have made that commitment, hand their love gifts to class leaders, who then pass that money on to the family.

The meals, the child care, the love continues. Financial needs are met. Friends, that is Christian love at its finest, its best, its purest, its most Christ honoring. Is there someone you know with a need you can meet? If you cannot meet that need alone, do you have a friend, or friends, or a class, or a church that can join you in meeting that need? The world has many hurting people who need not only to hear about the love of Jesus, but who need to see the followers of Jesus putting that love into action. You and I are those followers.

As the little chorus says”
‘They will know we are Christians by our love
Yes, they will know we are Christians by our love”.

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. $ 800–New total for the NC Baptist Children’s Homes Spring Food Drive
  5. April 28 and May 5
    5-7 pm–children and Youth activities
    5:30–6:30 pm–Adult Church Training

To whom can you show the love of Jesus this week?

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter April 21st

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

What a joy it was to baptize Hudson Snider this past Sunday. Pray for him as he becomes the newest member of Barbee’s Grove.
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Jesus said, “Suffer the little children and forbid them not, to come unto Me: for of such is the Kingdom of Heaven”. [Matthew 19:14] As I was driving home last week, still basking in the warm glow of the Baptismal Service, I began to think. I thought of how much the Lord loves children, and of how often He uses children to minister for Him. First, I thought of some Bible examples. Samuel was a small boy when the Lord began to speak to him and through him. [1 Samuel 3:1-21] A little maid, a captured Israelite girl, ministered to her Master, Naaman, and enabled him to be healed of leprosy. [2 Kings 5: 1ff] Jesus Himself, at age 12, astonished the exalted religious leaders at the Temple with His knowledge and wisdom. [Luke 2: 46-52]

Then the Lord turned my thoughts to some modern examples of His work in the lives of children. I remembered a 5 year old girl. Her parents sat her down and explained that the Lord was leading their family to leave the USA and to move to a foreign country as missionaries. Did the child cry, and whine, saying she didn’t want to go? No. Instead she said, “Oh goody, I have wanted to be a missionary all my life”. Even at 5 she had a heart for Jesus and for others. That same little 5 year old came home from school one day and said, “Mama, I know we aren’t supposed to talk when we are in line at school. But today, I talked, and my friend became a Christian”.  I know of another 8-10 year old girl. She invited her girl classmates to her house for “sleepovers’. She led several of these to Jesus. Then, she would take her allowance money and buy them a Bible. In another Church Newsletter I read about a 9 year old boy. “He never misses Prayer Meeting [he had to walk there by himself], he has read all the age appropriate books in the Church Library, and he may become another Billy Graham”. He never preached great crusades like Billy Graham, but he did grow up to become a full time Pastor. Then, who can forget the message of our last 2 Newsletters? A 19 year old girl changed thousands of lives because she insisted that an unsaved classmate go with her to a James Robison Crusade.

Friends, Children are God’s precious gifts to us. As they are given love, guidance, Bible training at home, and as they receive that same love, guidance and Bible training from Godly church leaders, these children can be like Jesus, who, “Increased in wisdom, stature, and in favor with God and man.” [luke 2:52]

Oh, by the way, God is an Equal Employment Opportunity God. Not only does He use children and young people in His ministry, He also calls older people to His service. Abraham was 75, Moses was 80, and the Apostle John was around 90 when he wrote the Book of Revelation. We never get too old to serve the Lord. The Bible lists no retirement age for Christians. Paul’s testimony was this, “I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith”. [2 Timothy 4:7] Paul ran all the way to the Finish Line. May we do the same. That is my goal. I pray that it is your goal as well.

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. $300–Amount given for the NC Baptist Children’s Homes Spring Food Drive. You may continue to give
  5. April 28 and May 5
            5–7 pm–Children and Youth activities
            5:30–6:30 pm—Adult Church Training

Keep running toward the Finish Line

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter April 14th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

We extend our love and sympathy to Mrs. Rita Linker and family upon the death of her Mother, Mrs. Kathrine Eudy. May the Lord’s peace and comfort flood your lives.

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CONGRATULATIONS—IT’S A GIRL
Elzy Claire Smith
Parents–Callie and Daniel Smith
Grandparents—Darrin and Crystal Hatley–Tim and Kathy Smith
Great-Grandparent—Jewell Hatley
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Let’s continue our Testimony from last week. It has a surprising but sad twist. Remember, it was the testimony of a Pastor who grew up in an unGodly, profane home. One Saturday night he was “dragged” to a James Robison Crusade. That night he was born again and became a new man in Christ.

The next morning [Sunday] he got up and announced to the family that he was going to the church that was nearby. As a person who had never been to church he assumed one church was as good as another. He was shocked when his Mother and Sister said, “We want to go with you”. They attended together. At the end of the service he walked forward and explained to the Pastor what had happened to him the night before. The Pastor did not seem to know what to do with him. Discouraged, he turned around to go back to his seat. There stood his Mother and his Sister. They wanted what he had. They also wanted to become Christians. It should have been a glorious moment, but sadly, the Church Pastor had no idea how to lead these two women to salvation.

So, this brand new Believer, who had only been a Christian for about 12 hours, sat his Mother and Sister down on the front pew. He carefully explained to them all that the Baptist Deacon had shared with him the night before. This new Christian did what the Pastor could not do. He led his family members to a saving relationship with Jesus. In one weekend, a family was transformed.

It troubles me that a man who said he was a God-called Pastor could not explain the plan of salvation to two ladies who were eager to be saved. The Bible teaches, “…be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you…”[1 Peter 3:15]

Is Jesus your Lord and Savior? If the answer is “Yes”, that is wonderful. Second question, “If in the next minute you were confronted with someone who wanted to be saved, could you lead them to Jesus?” If not, please learn immediately. Memorize Scriptures about salvation. Learn where they are in your Bible. Let’s be prepared to share the “Good news”.

Contemplate this—-A family was transformed, and when that young man became a Pastor, thousands were touched by his ministry. It all was possible because a teenage girl was concerned about a classmate’s unsaved condition and was persistent in her witness. Imagine her reward in Heaven. May we “Go and do likewise”!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

Sunday School is at 9:00 am
Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
April 14–Baptismal Service
April — Baptist Children’s Homes Food Drive. You may give money or bring food and paper products. These must be at the church by April 21
April 28 and May 5
    5–7 pm—Children and Youth activities
    5:30–6:30 pm–Adult Church Training

This week is a good week to introduce someone to Jesus

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter April 7th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

“”…whatsoever things are true…honest…just…pure…lovely…of good report; if there be any virtue, think on these things.” [Philippians 4:8] Let this verse be on your mind as you read the following testimony. Several years ago, I heard the Pastor of a rather large church give his personal testimony. He said that his family never attended church when he was a child. His Mom and Dad had a lifestyle of drinking, gambling, with lots of vulgarity and profanity. That atmosphere surrounded him daily.

This Pastor stated that he returned home after his first year in college. A female high school classmate saw him and began “bugging” him [in a nice way] to attend a James Robison Crusade with her. He did not want to go, so he hid. The classmate chased him down. Reluctantly, he went with her to the Crusade. That night, the Holy Spirit spoke to his heart. He went forward during the invitation time. The Crusade was held in a baseball stadium. He related, that about the First Base marker, a Baptist Deacon explained the plan of salvation and that he was saved.[Born again]

The Pastor said that on the way home, the devil began to assail him with doubts. “It was all emotional. You didn’t really get saved”, etc. With these doubts in his mind he walked home. It was about Midnight. As he walked onto the porch, there sat his parents and their buddies. As usual, they were drinking and cursing loudly. Suddenly, a revelation hit the young man. He stated that for the first time in his entire life, what he was seeing and hearing “felt dirty to him”.

Jesus had given this young man a new heart, a clean, pure heart. That new heart immediately recognized that which was impure, unGodly, and evil. He testified that at that moment he knew the devil was lying to him and that indeed he was a truly saved, changed man.

Friends, our reaction to vulgarity, immorality, impurity, and evil, tells us a lot about ourselves. 1] Are we truly saved? 2] Are we saved, but backslidden? 3] Are we walking close to Jesus? It is very simple to give ourselves a checkup. What type of books do we read? What movies and programs do we watch? What are our music preferences? How do our friends speak and act? If we can hang around where profanity is rampant, women are not fully clothed, words are unGodly, we have a problem. If the Holy Spirit lives within us, He will be grieved by unGodliness. We need to ask, “Am I really saved?” “Am I satisfied to be backslidden?” “Is the Lord pleased with me?” Truly saved individuals will flee filth, and will automatically seek the purity and holiness of the Lord.

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. Wednesday, April 10, 6:30 pm—Next Children and Youth meeting
  5. Sunday, April 7–5:30 pm—Church Training
  6. Sunday, April 14–Baptismal Service
  7. $ 1180–Final total for Annie Armstrong Home Mission Offering
  8. April—NC Baptist Children Homes Spring Food Drive. If you give money, put “Food Drive” on the envelope. If you bring food or other items, please be sure they are not out of date. These items need to be at the church by Sunday April 21 in order to get them to the pick-up site.
  9. THANK YOU-THANK YOU
    1. To all who came and made Easter one of our highest attended services since before Covid
    2. To the Choir–You did an awesome job and blessed each of us
    3. To the men who came so early in the morning and prepared the delicious Easter Breakfast
    All of you made this Easter a special day in the life of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church
  10. April 7–7:00 pm -Choir Practice

What a wonderful, glorious Savior we serve

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter Mar 31st

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

Our daughter, Sarah, and our son-in-law, Brian both graduated from Oral Roberts University. Both, also, have advanced degrees from Oklahoma State University. The featured speaker at their ORU Graduation was a United States Congressman. During his speech, he told a story that was so bizarre that it troubles me all these years later.

The Congressman said that one day he was in our nation’s Capital and was introduced to a King from another nation. He noticed that among the King’s entourage, there was a man who did not seem to fit with all the other dignitaries. He asked about that man and was told, “That is the designated Heart Donor”. The explanation went like this. The King is too important to our nation and we can’t let him die. The nation has been searched and this man’s heart is medically compatible with the King’s heart. The King travels with a skilled heart surgeon. If the King suddenly needs a new heart, the transplant can begin as soon as an Operating Room is available. I often wonder, did the Heart Donor volunteer for the position because he loved the king, or was he forced into that role?

I am sure that very concept troubles you, just like it troubles me. But, yet, is that not the message of the Cross and of Easter? We, as human beings have bad hearts and need a heart transplant.
   …”The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?” [Jeremiah 17:9]
   …”Because that, when they knew God, they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful: but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened”. [Romans 1:21]

While we were lost sinners, with dark, evil hearts, Jesus, voluntarily, out of love for us, became a man. He did this so that He could take our place, die for our sins. On the Cross, Jesus made it possible for us to have new hearts, and enable us to enter into Heaven. Praise God for the new hearts Jesus gives us.
   …”Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience….” [Hebrews 10:22]
   …”And I will give them one heart and I will put a new spirit within you, and I will take the stony heart out of their flesh and will give them a heart of flesh”. [Ezekiel 11:19]

Jesus is your Designated Heart Donor. He gives you a new, God-like heart. With the heart Jesus gives, you become a member of the family of the King of Kings. I pray that every person reading this has received new life, eternal life, from Jesus Oh, how we praise Jesus for His great love for us!!!!!!!!!!!!

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am [NO SUNDAY SCHOOL EASTER SUNDAY]
  2. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  3. April 14–Baptismal Service
  4. $ 1120 is the latest total for the Annie Armstrong Offering for Home Missions. Easter is our last Sunday to give.
  5. Easter Schedule
        5:30–Cooks arrive
        7:00 –Sunrise Service
        7:30 –Breakfast
        8:30 –Morning Worship–Communion

Let’s celebrate our Risen Lord Jesus this week, and every week

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church.

Newsletter Mar 24th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

I was reading in Psalms this week and realized that throughout the ages of time, when men experienced difficult situations, they asked the question: “Why doesn’t God do something”? Many believe that God is ALL KNOWING and ALL POWERFUL. Thus, God knows everything that is happening in the universe. God also has the power to alter anything that is happening. Yet, we hope, dream, cry, and pray, and nothing changes. As a result, some become angry and turn away from God. Others, keep trusting, but live with disappointment. Today, let’s explore the question, “Why doesn’t God do something”?

One answer is this—-God has eternal purposes that we don’t understand at this time. For example, when Jesus hung on that cross, I can imagine that His mother, the disciples, and other followers, thought, “Why doesn’t God do something [intervene]”? Only later did they understand that the cross was God’s way of dealing with sin and offering us salvation. It is a fact of life, there will always be situations that we will not understand until later in life, or perhaps not till we get to Heaven.

There are at least 3 Biblical reasons keeping God from intervening in certain situations. Psalm 78:41 says that because of Israel’s actions they “limited the Holy One of Israel. Their actions short circuited God’s power. They “tied God’s Hands”. Sometimes, we don’t know God’s eternal purposes. At other times God doesn’t change a situation because we have “limited the Holy One of Israel”. Let’s look at 3 ways the Bible says we “tie God’s Hands’.

…Sin ties God’s Hands. It doesn’t get any plainer than Isaiah 59:1,2,”Behold, the Lord’s hand is not shortened that it cannot save; neither His ear heavy that it cannot hear: but your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid His face from you, that He will not hear.”

…Unbelief, doubt, a lack of faith ties God’s Hands. The New Testament tells us that Jesus performed many miracles and healed thousands. Yet, Matthew 13:58 tells the sad story of Jesus going to His hometown “And He did not many mighty works there because of their unbelief”.

…A lack of intimacy with God [a weak prayer life] can tie God’s Hands. Matthew 17 tells that when Jesus came down from the Mt. of Transfiguration he found His disciples discouraged because they could not heal a demon possessed boy. Jesus quickly dealt with the father’s unbelief and brought healing. Later, the disciples asked, “Why could we not cast him out”? [17:19] Jesus gave a 2 part answer—–“your unbelief” [17:20] and “This kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting”. [17:21] The disciples needed to spend more time in intimate fellowship with God in order to replace doubt with a powerful faith.

Some situations in life may always remain a mystery until we get to Heaven. Those are the times we keep trusting in God, knowing that He is good and always plans the best for us. However, we do need at other times to repent of sin, and to walk in such closeness with the Lord that faith replaces doubt. Then, some of those “Why doesn’t God do something” moments will change into,”Wow, look at what God did” moments.

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. $ 900–Updated total for the Annie Armstrong Home Mission Offering
  4. Sunday, March 24–6:00 pm—Choir Practice
  5. Thursday, March 28–6:30 pm—Maundy Thursday Service [No Wednesday Bible Study that week]
  6. Saturday, March 30–10:00 am—Easter Egg Hunt for the children—Please bring guests
  7. Sunday, April 7–5:30-6:30 pm—Church Training. In the beginning, we plan Church Training to be on the same Sunday nights as the Youth and Children’s meetings.
  8. Easter Schedule–March 31
    5:30- Cooks arrive
    7:00- Sunrise Service
    7:30 -Breakfast
    8:30 -Morning Worship
    No Sunday School Please invite others to attend with you

Never forget—-Jesus died for YOU

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter Mar 17th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

Those of you who were at Barbee’s Grove this past Sunday know that I began the sermon speaking about the Prophet Ezekiel’s trip to the Valley of Dry Bones [Ezekiel 37]. After Ezekiel prophesied, those bones rejoined into human skeletons and were covered with flesh and skin. It was an impressive display of humanity. However, no one had life. Ezekiel prophesied again. The wind of God began to blow. The life of God entered each person. Soon, a large army stood to its feet.

I commented that no matter how impressive a person is – educated, rich, moral, famous, good citizen, athletic, or talented – they are still spiritually dead until the Holy Spirit brings the life of God into them. We must be “Born Again”, “Born from Above”. Romans 8:9 states it this way:

   …”But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of His”.

As I drove home from the service, I was reminded of an experience from 30 years ago. Pamela and I were near Hickory, N.C. visiting a Baptist Pastor friend. He and I were in the front seat, our wives behind us. He drove past an impressive church of another Christian denomination. The building looked new and I imagined that it would hold at least 500 people. My Pastor friend said, “That church just fired their Pastor”. I was shocked and asked, “Why, embezzlement, immorality?” I was really shocked at his reply, “He was trying to get his church members saved”.

Evidently, this Pastor was truly “Born Again”. The Holy Spirit residing in him alerted him to the fact that most of his church members were just that –  “church members”. They did not have a saving relationship with Jesus. Out of concern for their spiritual condition, and their eternal destination, the Pastor was visiting church members in their homes. He was sharing that they needed a personal relationship with Jesus. Those church members were comfortable with their “Cultural Christianity” and uncomfortable with their “lostness” being exposed. The solution: Fire the Pastor.

Friends, the message of Easter is that all men are sinners. All men need a Savior. Jesus is the only One who can save us. In order to go to Heaven, we need a personal relationship with Jesus. I pray that the Spirit of Christ does dwell within each person who reads these words. If so, I will see you in Heaven. AMEN

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. $ 858.88 – Total given for our local Pregnancy Resource Center. WONDERFUL
  5. $ 850 – Present total for Annie Armstrong Offering for Home Missions. Great start! Three more Sundays to add to this total
  6. March 17 – Called Conference to elect Nominating Committee
  7. Choir Practice – March 24
  8. March 21 – Golden Agers Meal. Meet at the church at 4:45 to carpool or meet the group at Rocky River Springs Fish House
  9. March 30 – 10:00 am. Easter Egg Hunt for the children. Bring guests
  10. Thursday, March 28 – Maundy Thursday Service – 6:30 pm. No Wednesday service that week
  11. Easter – March 31
    5:30 Cooks arrive
    7:00 Sunrise Service
    7:30 Breakfast
    8:30 Morning Worship – Communion
    Please bring guests
    NO SUNDAY SCHOOL
  12. Church Training begins – 5:30 pm. This comes as a result of your wishes on our recent Church Survey. Please come as we begin this new time of learning.

Question – “Is it a good idea to fire the Pastor when he is attempting to enable you to spend an eternity in Heaven?”

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter Mar 10th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

Let us begin this week by saying, THANK YOU. When Covid hit and the Government ordered us to close the church, we began this Newsletter. We wanted our membership to be informed, encouraged, and instructed. I was only the Interim Pastor. We had no idea what was ahead of us. These years later, there have been more than 200 Newsletters written. We thank the Lord for giving ideas each week. There are some others we also want to thank: Brenda Burris, Wes Barbee, and men who served as Deacon Chairmen through these years [Leonard Harvell, Jeff Keplinger, and David Talley]. They have made the delivery process possible. They got the Newsletter from my computer to you. In March 2020 they had no idea what they were volunteering to do, nor how many hours they would spend in the delivery process. Because they love the Lord and Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church, they have been faithful. I thank them. If you enjoy the Newsletter, please also thank these faithful workers when you have the opportunity.

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Recently, I had a 70 years ago, “Flashback”. I was in one of the early grades at West Albemarle School. Our art assignment was to take a bar of soap and to carve the head of some famous person. I chose Ivory soap because it was soft and easy to carve. Since my artistic abilities are near zero, I carved a head that was somewhere between a human and a space alien. After I received my grade and took my “artistic” creation home, I am sure it soon ended up in the soap holder at the bathtub. Our family was too poor to waste a bar of soap.

Contrast my temporary, poorly done, artwork to magnificent statues carved out of marble. You have seen them in person or in pictures. These statues are beautiful and have endured for hundreds, and even thousands, of years. How do those works of art get created? The artist envisions what he wants to create. He selects a block of marble. He takes a mallet and chisel and begins to chip away every bit of stone that hides the beautiful object he is creating. In the later stages, he takes something like sandpaper to smooth out all the rough edges. It takes months, maybe years, but at last he has a masterpiece that is admired by all who see it.

I was picturing that creative process in my mind. I realized that this is similar to what happens after we accept Jesus as our Lord and Savior. Remember the little chorus the kids often sing

“God made the moon and the stars
But He’s still working on me”

Usually, we don’t resemble Jesus when we are first saved. But God begins to work on us. He shows sin that needs to go. We repent. He shows bad habits that need to stop. He leads us to good actions that bless us and others. Month-by month, year-by-year, God makes us more like Jesus. The more we cooperate with Him, the faster the process goes.

Please don’t let the devil discourage you or cause you to lose heart. He wants you to quit. The last thing the devil wants is a group of Believers running around, looking and acting like Jesus. When you feel a little sandpaper [spiritually], tell Jesus “Thank You”. After all, soon more of Jesus will be seen in your life. Think of this:

“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works…” [Ephesians 2:10]

“That in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace…” [Ephesians 2:7]

The beauty the Lord is creating in you is not temporary, like my bar of soap. He is creating an eternal masterpiece.

GOD WANTS TO SPEND AN ETERNITY FEATURING YOU AS ONE OF HIS BEAUTIFUL CREATIONS. HOW AWESOME IS THAT?

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. March 10–Called Conference to elect a Nominating Committee
  5. Easter Egg hunt for the children and youth–Saturday, March 30 at 10:00 am
  6. Maundy Thursday Service March 28-6:30 pm. NO WEDNESDAY BIBLE STUDY.
  7. EASTER SCHEDULE — March 31
    7:00 am – Sunrise Service
    7:30 am – Breakfast
    8:30 am – Morning Worship Service – Communion
    NO SUNDAY SCHOOL

Please invite family, friends, and neighbors, to celebrate our Risen Lord Jesus at Barbee’s Grove this year.

Our goal is to look more like Jesus every day and for all eternity

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter Mar 3rd

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

We rejoice that this past Sunday, Hudson Snider, son of Zach and Emily Snider, came forward to accept Jesus as his Lord and Savior. We welcome him and pray for him as he awaits baptism and church membership.

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CONGRATULATIONS——IT’S A GIRL
Whitley Christine Triplett
Parents—Aaron and Hannah Triplett
Grandparents—Chris and Veronica Whitley—-Tim and Gwen Triplett
Great Grandparent—Barbara Whitley
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“Finding Your Roots” on the Public Broadcasting Channel, is a show that I usually enjoy watching. Two celebrities are featured on most shows. Often they know very little about their ancestors. As the show unfolds, they are taken back in time to learn who those ancestors were, what they did, and where they lived. Near the end of some shows, the Host says, “We have one additional surprise for you”.” We compared your DNA to the DNA of other people we had available. We found that you share DNA from your family tree with another person. Please turn the page”. The page is turned and the participant is looking at the picture of a famous actor, musician, athlete, etc. It is always a surprise.

Suppose you were featured on a program, “Finding Your Spiritual Roots”. Who were your spiritual “Fathers and Mothers”? [The people who led you to Christ?] Who led them to Jesus? One day, I was sitting in Chapel while I was a seminary student. The speaker, a professor, amazed us as he traced his spiritual roots, generation to generation, all the way back to one of the original 12 Disciples. All I could say was “Wow”. I have never attempted that. I wonder how far back I could go.

Do you realize, that if your spiritual DNA was tested, a certain picture would be on the last page? It would be a picture of Jesus!!!! Every truly “Born Again” person is “born from above” and carries the DNA of Jesus. Consider John 14:20 “At that day ye shall know that I am in My Father, and ye in Me, and I in you”. Because you carry God’s spiritual DNA you will begin to act like Jesus. Consider John 14: 12 “He that believeth on Me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do”.

Occasionally, at the beginning of the show, the Host will ask, “What do you know about your roots”? If I remember correctly, one participant mentioned her strong Italian roots. She was shocked when the Host replied,”” according to your DNA you have “no” Italian ancestors. Your family came from a different European country” . That reminded me that Jesus said that on the Day of Judgement, some who claimed to carry His DNA would be shocked to find that it was not true. The King James Version of Matthew 7:21 quotes Jesus this way, “Not every one that saith unto Me ,Lord, Lord, shall enter into the Kingdom of Heaven, but he that doeth the will of My Father which is in Heaven”.

It is wise to make sure, without any doubt, that you carry the DNA of Jesus.

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. March—Our month to give to the Annie Armstrong Easter Offering for Home Missions
  5. March 3 and 10—Children and Youth meet at 5:00 pm
  6. March 3–Called Church Conference to consider additional items proposed by our Buildings and Grounds Committee
  7. March 10—6 pm–Choir practice

Check your spiritual DNA this week

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter Feb 25th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

Consider these scenarios:

…You buy something you need. Stamped in bold letters on the box are these words, “Some Assembly Required”. You get home, take out your tools, and start the assembly. Midway through the project you realize that a main piece of the product is missing. It isn’t in the box. You are left with an unfinished product. It is so frustrating.

…Your taste buds crave a favorite food. Outcome the mixing bowls and you begin to prepare the dish. Suddenly, you realize that you don’t have a key ingredient. Unless you make a trip to the store, the recipe will be left unfinished. It is so frustrating.

…You spend hours assembling a large jigsaw puzzle. A beautiful scene emerges. The picture isn’t perfect and you cannot complete it because 2 pieces of the puzzle are not in the box. It is so frustrating.

…God has a special mission and ministry He wants a local church to complete. Members gather to plan how to obey the Lord. However, the ministry never happens because the members needed to do the work are missing. It is so frustrating.

Friends, There is a reason God told us in Hebrews 10:25 “Forsake not the assembling of yourselves together, as the manner of some is…”. In 1 Corinthians 12, Paul compares the Church to a human body. There are many parts [arms, legs, eyes, ears, etc.]. Each part has its own unique function. If any part is missing or damaged, the body cannot function properly.

My friend, you may feel small, insignificant, and unnecessary. However, if you are saved, you are vital to the mission and ministry of your local church. Your talents and spiritual gifts equip you to serve. Sadly, so many God inspired ministries “never get off the ground”. Why? The person with the energy, insight, and ability to empower the ministry either does not show up, or refuses to have a role in God’s plan.

Let me add this: Sometimes, the Lord’s work does not get done because a person, or a family, is trying to attach themselves to the wrong local body of Believers. They are trying to attach to Church A when the Lord has an assignment for them at Church B. When that happens, Church A suffers, Church B suffers, and those in the wrong pew suffer.

It is when we are properly attached, present, and ministering in the will of God, that the Kingdom of God advances, and that all are blessed. Today, someone needs your smile, your hug, your word of encouragement. May we never be AWOL from the Army of God.

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church are at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study are Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. March is the month that we give our Annie Armstrong Offering for missions in the USA. Begin to ask the Lord how much He wants you to give
  5. THANK YOU to all our wonderful ladies who led the Worship Service so beautifully on Baptist Women’s Day. We appreciate all your ministry at Barbee’s Grove

Where is your unique, God given, place of ministry?

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter Feb 18th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

This week we extend our love and sympathy to Lionel Hahn and family upon the death of his mother, Mrs. Kathleen Hahn. May the Lord’s peace and comfort surround each of you.
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We also note with sadness the death of Rev. Tony Bradley, a former Pastor of Barbee’s Grove. Please remember his family in your prayers.
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May I be permitted to get up on my soapbox this week? When I was a Kid, I heard this saying often, “A fool and his money are soon parted”. Folks who are not wise, soon find themselves in financial difficulty. I think of that saying often when I see the gambling craze that is consuming America. The Lottery, casinos, and sports betting are everywhere.

Sure, there are some winners, but at what cost? Many winners are broke a few years later. What about the losers? I can’t validate it, but I read that casinos pay out 10% in winnings and keep the other 90%. If that is true, when they pay out a million dollars, gamblers have lost 10 million. You say to me, “But Ed, what about the Education Lottery?” I well remember the day the Lottery was made legal. Our officials proclaimed a glorious, wonderful new day for education in North Carolina. How well has that worked out? Think of these remarkable results: 1-Underpaid Teachers, 2-Inadequate classroom resources, 3- Crumbling buildings, 4- Unruly students, 5- Metal detectors at the doors, 6- Armed Resource Officers, 7- Students who don’t know if they are male, female, or something else, and 8- In spite of the fact that there are some good, hard-working Teachers in the system, generally falling test scores. It is not a “glorious new day”!!

Let me share some personal stories. When I was a Pastor in the mountains, a new casino was approved. I know of one lady who gambled away a million dollar business. A tour bus from Atlanta broke down leaving the casino. Riders were stranded. Not a single person on the bus had the money to buy a meal while they waited for a replacement bus. A man was living blissfully in his retirement home. He had worked and sacrificed for years to buy that home. One day, he found out he was being evicted. Unknown to him, his wife had gambled away that home to the casino. Last I heard, he was living in a small camper on borrowed property. [I did not hear whether his wife was with him, or if he kicked her out.]

After I wrote the first draft of this Newsletter, I read where a major sports team was begging one of the gambling sites to return 20 million dollars. It seems that someone on the team staff manipulated team credit cards and gambled away over 20 million dollars of team money. Last I heard, the gambling site said something like this: “Tough, but that is between the team and the staff member. We are keeping the money. It is not our problem.” [It will be interesting to see if anything changes in the weeks to come.]

Friends, gambling is a way to lose all you have. God’s way to financial blessing is far more sure and certain.
   …”It is He [God], who gives thee the power to get wealth, that He may establish His covenant….” Deuteronomy 8:18
   …”He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the Lord: and that which he hath given will He pay him again”. Proverbs 19:17
   …”Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse….. I will open the windows of Heaven and pour you out a blessing that there shall not be room enough to receive it”. Malachi 3:10
   …”Give, and it shall be given unto you: good measure, pressed down, and shaken together, and running over, shall men give into your bosom.”  Luke 6:38

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall

Let’s make safe investments, not foolish ones.

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter Feb 11th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

I do not begin to have the spiritual stature of Apostle Paul or Apostle John. However, as a Pastor, there are some ways I closely identify with these men. Let’s start with John.
In 3 John verses 3 and 4, John writes: “For I rejoiced greatly when the Brethren came and testified of the truth that is in thee, even as thou walkest in truth. I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in the truth”. [John makes the same comment in 2 John verse 4].

John was full of joy that those he led to Jesus, those he taught, those who shared his ministry, were continuing to live for Jesus. I share that joy. I look at the churches where I have served, the fellow Believers that I have taught. We served and worshipped Jesus together. So many are still as faithful to the Lord as they were 20-30-40-50 years ago. Their bodies may have grown more feeble and frail, but their fire, their passion for Jesus, is as strong or stronger than it ever was. Like John, I remember these friends with thankfulness and joy!!

However, I also identify with Paul.
In 2 Timothy 4:10, Paul writes, “For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica”. After a time of faithfulness, Demas turned his back on Jesus and chased a worldly lifestyle. This brought Paul great sorrow. I also look back and remember men and women who were Teachers, Deacons, Choir Members, and Youth Leaders. Sadly, now they seldom, if ever, attend church. Their lifestyle is worldly. They have no positive influence in the Kingdom of God. It makes me sad. Sometimes I ask myself, “Did I mess up? Was there something I did not teach or live?”

The reality is that a Pastor does have a role to play. However, we each make our own personal decision. Will we faithfully serve Jesus until the end of our life, or will we turn our back upon Him? Consider this—when former Pastors think of you and me, do they have joy or sorrow? I pray that it is joy.

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. February 11–Baptist Womens’ Day–Guest Speaker from the Pregnancy Resource Center
  5. If you have placed your Resource Center Offering in a baby bottle, please bring it Sunday
  6. February 11—5-7 pm–Youth and Children’s activities. All school age youth and children are invited. Bring a friend

Let’s be faithful until the Lord calls, “Come home my child”

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter Feb 4th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

This week I have been thinking about forgiveness. That is a practice with which many people struggle. There are those who will never forgive any wrong. Others will forgive up to a limit. As Believers in Jesus we learn to forgive, even when we are wronged and hurt.

Today, I have been meditating upon God’s forgiveness. It began as I listened to the third verse of another hymn. Remember, in an earlier Newsletter I lamented that we often miss great revelation when we skip the third verse of a hymn we are singing. The hymn on my heart goes like this:
“My sin–oh, the bliss of this glorious thought
My sin–not in part, but the WHOLE
Is nailed to the cross
And I bear it no more
Praise the Lord, Praise the Lord, O my soul”
No wonder the song writer could say, “It is well with my soul”.

Focus on the phrase, “not in part, but the Whole, of our sins is nailed to the cross”. Here is how my thoughts went. Suppose a person died. He got to the Gate of Heaven. His life records were checked. Then, the Gatekeeping Angel said, “I am sorry, I cannot let you into Heaven. Father God is truly a Loving, forgiving God, but even He has His limit on the number of sins He will forgive. Sadly, you exceeded that lifetime limit, so you don’t qualify for Heaven. OR, suppose the angel said, “Because you believed in Jesus, you do get to enter Heaven. However, because you exceeded God’s sin limit, you don’t get a clean white robe. For all of eternity, you will be in Heaven, but you will be wearing a soiled, dirty robe. Everyone in Heaven will know that you exceeded God’s sin limit. Aren’t those sad thoughts?

Praise the Lord, our Loving Heavenly Father has no sin limit. He is willing to forgive each, every, all our sin, as we confess and repent. 1 John 1:9–“If we confess our sin, He is faithful and just to forgive our sin and to cleanse us from ALL unrighteousness.” What joy to know, “Not in part, but the WHOLE of our sins are nailed to the cross”. Praise the Lord, O my soul.

The hymn writer got it right. Place your sins under the Blood of Jesus. Be thankful! Rejoice! Praise Jesus!

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. February 4–Called Church Conference [Repairing stained glass windows, perhaps other window issues, security doors]
  5. February 11–Baptist Women’s Day–Speaker from our local Pregnancy Resource Center
  6. Remember–Special offering for the Pregnancy Resource Center
  7. Youth Night–February-4. Time 5-7 pm. All school age children and youth invited. Supper served at 5 pm. Bring a friend

Is it well with your soul today?

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter Jan 28th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

I was reading a passage of Scripture this week when certain thoughts and memories came to mind. I have been preaching for over 60 years. During that time I have been privileged to know some awesome men and women of God. We have prayed together, ministered as partners, and celebrated Jesus as our Lord and Savior. Indeed, these special people have truly been anointed by God.

During that same period of time, I have met some church leaders who were just the opposite. These folks had the spiritual wisdom and maturity of some 8 year old new Christian. It appeared to me that they got their position of leadership simply by “hanging around”. They had been a part of the church so long that someone decided to elect them as a Teacher, Deacon, or to another position of leadership. No one paid any attention to their spiritual immaturity. As a result, they usually caused trouble wherever they served. Being a member of a religious group does not guarantee a walk with God.

Now, back to the passage of Scripture that triggered these thoughts. It is the story of “The woman with the issue of blood” [Luke 8: 43-48] She had been ill for years. She was broke from paying doctors. She was getting weaker. Then this lady heard about Jesus. When she pressed through the crowd and touched Him she was made well.

Notice, it was a large crowd. I imagine that many were jostling, elbowing, pushing and shoving, trying to get as near to Jesus as possible. No doubt, some did touch Jesus. However, only one person was healed. It was the woman who would not be deterred until she touched Jesus by faith. The Bible says, “We walk by faith and not by sight” [2 Corinthians 5:7] and “Without faith it is impossible to please Him [God]” [Hebrews 11:6].

Let me go back to those “awesome” believers I have known over the years. What made them that way? They were not content to just “hang around” as one in the religious crowd. Instead, they daily reach out to touch Jesus by faith. They have an intimate fellowship with Him. They live and serve in the power of the Holy Spirit. They have a reality of experience with Jesus that makes them genuine.

Perhaps you have heard some variation of this statement, “Just because you live in a garage, does not mean that you are a car. Just because you “hang around” with religious people does not mean that you are a true child of God”. Are you just in the crowd, “hanging around” Jesus, or have you touched Him by faith?

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM or on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. We are now making our special gifts to our local Pregnancy Resource Center

Reach out by faith to Jesus

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter Jan 21st

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

CONGRATULATIONS—–IT’S A GIRL
Darcy Ann Whitley
Parents–Baron and Emily Whitley
Grandparents–Chris and Veronica Whitley— Marc and Emily Clarkson
Great Grandparent–Barbara Whitley

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Please read this Newsletter slowly and carefully. I am going to try to make a point or two, but it may be in a “roundabout” way. This Sunday, January 21 , has been designated by religious groups as “Sanctity Of Human Life ” Sunday. It is a day when, historically, Christians have focused on ending abortion. Some of that battle has been won in recent years. Now we are getting a “push back”. If we are not vigilant we could lose the ground we have gained. Keep alert. Keep working. Keep praying.

But what happens after children are born is very important. This past Sunday, I gave my testimony. Several times I mentioned that I am so thankful that [1] I had a Mother who faithfully took her boys to church, and [2] that she took us to a loving, Bible believing church. Both are important. My brothers and I had normal childhood activities [Little League, Boy Scouts, etc.], but nothing interfered with church. Hot, cold, rain, sleet, snow, it did not matter. Mama and her 4 boys walked to church. I have this memory of the 5 of us receiving our 12 year Perfect Attendance pins. If my math is correct, that means all of us had attended church 624 Sundays without a miss. Thank God for Mama. 2 Preachers and 2 Deacons were the result.

Now let’s get serious. Parents, you can give your kids clothes, toys, education, trips, activities, and vacations, but if you don’t regularly see that they are in a loving Bible believing church, you are failing as a parent. Haphazard attendance, or attending a church with faulty Scriptural beliefs, will not get the job done. In the very beginning God told His followers, [Deuteronomy 6:6,7] “And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: and thou shalt teach the diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way….” Each child still has to personally say “Yes” or “No” to Jesus, but so many kids never get that chance. I remember a number of kids from the past 60 years. Their parents said that they were Christian. Yet, often with tears in their eyes, their children would say to me, “Preacher, I want to come to church, but no one will bring me”. As far as I now know, many years later, all of these kids are still unsaved.

Now, let me shock you with how serious this is. I truly believe that every aborted baby immediately goes to Heaven to be with Jesus. Earthly life was cruelly snatched from them, but they will have a glorious eternity. HOWEVER, those children who are born, live to the Age of Accountability, and never have a real opportunity to believe in Jesus, die and do not go to Heaven. They spend an eternity separated from God’s blessing. How tragic!!!! You cannot be saved for your children. That is their choice. However, you can make sure they have multiple opportunities to learn about Jesus.

Let’s continue to strive to outlaw abortion. More importantly, let’s strive to see that every child is “Born Again”. [John 3:16]

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. January 21—Quarterly Church Conference

Jesus died that we might have eternal life

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter Jan 14th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

These days it is not unusual to encounter someone with a haughty, superior attitude toward those of us who believe the Bible is true and who try to live by Biblical precepts. Those folks believe that we are ignorant simpletons. They say, or write, such things as, “The Bible is old fashioned, out-dated, and has absolutely no relevance for modern society.” Don’t try to argue with such folks. Just sadly shake your head at their ignorance. May I share with you a story that is told as historically true?

In the late 1780s, a ship, Bounty, sailed from England. Somewhere in the South Seas the sailors became so angry at Captain Bligh’s treatment of them that they staged a mutiny. Captain Bligh and those who sided with him were placed on another boat. The mutineers took the Bounty and sailed to Tahiti. Some of those sailors stayed there. In 1790, nine of the mutineers abducted 20 Polynesians [14 of whom were women] and sailed to Pitcairn Island. Someone burned the Bounty, leaving no way of escape. Ten years of debauchery and turmoil followed. There were rivalries, immorality, abuse of the native women,alcoholism, and murders.

By 1800, John Adams was the only one of the original sailors still living. It is reported that he found a Bible in the ship’s chest. He began to read that Bible and to teach it to the 9 remaining women and 14 children. As they followed the Bible, lives were changed and social life became better. In 1808, an American ship, Topaz, docked and found a healthy, thriving community. A year or so later, a British ship came. After their visit, “John Adams was celebrated as the founder of a community that was an example of Victorian morality”.

What made the difference? The Bible, God’s Word changed an evil community into a more Godly settlement. It takes a really unthinking person to say that the Bible is outdated. Think of living in a community where God is honored, parents are respected, there is no lying, no theft, no adultery, no murder, and no coveting what others have, Think of living where the Golden Rule is practiced, Folks treating others with the kindness they themselves desire. Living in such a Bible based community would seem like Heaven on earth.

The Bible is God’s Word. Read it. Study it. Live it. In addition to rules for living, the Bible tells us about Jesus, the One who died for us and who opens the door for us to spend an eternity in Heaven.

…”Thy Word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path” Psalm 119:105
…”For the Word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword,….and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” Hebrews 4:12
…Heaven and earth shall pass away, But My Words shall not pass away”. Luke 21:33

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. January 14–Baptist Men’s Day–Breakfast at 7:00 am
  5. January 21–Quarterly Church Conference
  6. THANK YOU for the very generous Christmas bonus, the cards, gifts, and other expressions of your love during the holiday season. Pastor Ed

Use the lamp of the Bible to guide your footsteps

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church

Newsletter Jan 7th

GREETINGS FROM BARBEE’S GROVE BAPTIST CHURCH

We note with sadness the death of one of our oldest church members, Mrs. Bertie Hatley. She will be greatly missed. We extend our love and sympathy to her daughters, Mrs. Tamra Hahn and Mrs. Tonda Hamilton, and to her sister, Mrs. Betty Davis, and to all the other relatives. May the Lord’s peace and comfort surround you with precious memories.

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What is your level of Christianity? It is your choice. The answer you give determines your power and effectiveness as a Christian, and also determines how much peace and joy you have as you follow the Lord.

Some folks have a LIFE INSURANCE POLICY Christianity. Their goal is to be religious enough to have an insurance policy to “cash in” for a home in Heaven when they die. They keep their religion in a safe deposit box and rarely take it out to be seen. From time-to-time they go to church, pray, or do some other religious activity, hoping that they keep the premiums paid on their policy. It is hard to tell if these folks are “saved” or “unsaved”. Christianity brings them very little joy, and they have almost no power and effectiveness as Believers.

Others, have a GOD IS MY CO-PILOT faith. [Remember when those bumper stickers were popular 50 years ago?] This type of Christian does the driving. God sits in the Co-Pilot seat. Often, the one doing the driving gets hopelessly lost. He then turns to God and prays, “Lord, can you get me out of this mess?” Usually he is in trouble because the Lord told him not to take that road, but he was stubborn, or “knew more than God.” And ignored what the Lord told him. Once again, this type of faith has little joy and little power.

Then, there is the Biblical, New Testament level of Christianity. This is the HAND IN THE GLOVE level. The Believer is the glove and the Lord is the Hand in the glove. The Hand moves the glove. They act as one. There is great joy in sensing the Lord working through you. The glove has the power and authority to do anything the Hand can do. Since the Hand [God] has unlimited power and authority, so does the glove. This level of Christianity is joyful and powerfully anointed. The New Testament has many verses that proclaim this truth. Find and meditate upon them. Because of space limitations I am going to only mention a few from the Gospel of John.
…14:12 “He that believeth on Me, the works that I do shall he do also, and greater works than these shall he do…”
…14:16 “I will pray the Father and He shall give you another Comforter, that He may abide with you forever. …He dwelleth with you and shall be in you”
…14:20 “At that day ye shall know that I am in My Father, and ye in Me and I in you”.
…15:5 “I am the Vine. Ye are the branches. He that abideth in Me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit. For without Me, ye can do nothing”

I encourage you to become a “glove”. Be a Believer who is totally yielded to the Lord. Your joy, power, and effectiveness as a Christian will grow abundantly.

ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS

  1. Sunday School is at 9:00 am
  2. Morning Worship and Children’s Church is at 10:00 am. Also available in the parking lot at 10 on 99.1 FM and on the website after 12:30 pm
  3. Prayer and Bible Study is Wednesday at 6:30 pm in the Fellowship Hall
  4. $ 2357 Final Lottie Moon Offering for Foreign Missions.
  5. January 14–Baptist Men’s Day–Breakfast at 7:30 am
  6. January 21–Quarterly Church Conference

Let’s move our Christianity to a higher level!

Pastor Ed and Deacons of Barbee’s Grove Baptist Church.