Today’s Speaker: Brother Winston Pannell will conduct the 11:00 am service today. Pray for him as he delivers God’s word.
Guest Speaker: Pastor Bill Parker will be our guest speaker next Sunday, Dec. 11. He will have the 10am and 11am services.
Television Broadcast: Our Reign of Grace Television program is being broadcast on WFXL Fox 31, Channel 4. The program will air every Sunday morning at 11 AM.
Radio Broadcast: Sunday morning at 9:30am on 98.7 FM –WISK. To hear sermons click here
Annual Business Meeting: Copies of our annual Business Meeting can be obtained by contacting Jim Casey.
Birthdays: Randy Wages – Dec. 5th
“But God be thanked, that you were the servants of sin, but you have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered you. Being then made free from sin, you became the servants of righteousness.” Romans 6:17-18
As a son of the south with roots deep in rural America, I was introduced at an early age to many colloquialisms.
“How ya doing” was the normal salutation and not a personal inquiry into one’s medical history, although some took the opportunity to that end.
“Y’all come again” replaced goodbye and was an open invitation to visit again soon.
“Much obliged” expressed a heartfelt thank you with an acknowledged obligation to return the favor. “Owe no man anything” (Romans 13:8)was a responsibility taught early on, especially in spiritual things and Southern “Christians” were obliged to “practice what they preach.”
As a Son of God, I learned how “much obliged” I was to God when he revealed my state and standing before him. My state was one of ignorance and rebellion against my Redeemer. I was a servant of sin. I was a slave to Satan in legalism, serving up sin, i.e. “dead works and fruit unto death.” (Romans 7:5)
But my standing is everlasting. “In Christ” and that eternally, (Ephesians 2:13), “I am made nigh by the blood of Christ.” In Christ, I am made to know that I am no more a stranger and foreigner, but a fellow citizen with the saints and of the household and family of God.” (Ephesians 2:19) I am now a “servant of righteousness.”
Why I should be the object of such love is known only to God. What I am obliged to do is serve him in righteousness, not to repay an obligation but out of grace and gratitude for such great love wherewith he hath loved me. I was a servant of sin; I now am a servant of righteousness. I have God alone to thank for that. Much obliged Lord.
--- Winston Pannell
ABIDING IN CHRIST
The Lord told His disciples, “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” (John 15:5). It is clear that the spiritual life of all saved sinners is in Christ the Vine. Christ is our life, and He gives us life. The evidence of this glorious life in Him is that we abide (continue) in Him. The causal reason of our abiding in Him is that He will not let us go (John 10:28-30; Jude 24-25). The instrumental cause of our abiding in Him is the power of His grace which God the Holy Spirit implants within our hearts to show us our continual need of Christ. By the Spirit and by His Word we see three things that assure we are truly abiding in Christ. (1) To abide in Christ is to continue in the confident recognition of the value of His glorious Person as Godman and His perfect sacrifice – the power of His precious blood for the forgiveness of all our sins and His righteousness imputed for our justification before God. (2) To abide in Christ is to maintain a spirit and an attitude of entire dependency on Him. I can at no time depend upon myself-
“without ME ye can do NOTHING.” Someone wrote, ―What are the branches of a vine but helpless, creeping, clinging, things? They cannot stand alone; they need to be supported, held up.‖ (3) To abide in Christ is to draw from His fullness – the fullness of His Spirit, His Word, and in the fellowship of His people. There is no bread and water in the desert, no warmth in the frozen tundra, no health in the cesspool of the world. We must be where Christ is present, and He is present where His Word is preached and taught in the power of the Holy Spirit, where the people of God meet to worship, praise, and pray. It is not that He is absent from our lives outside of public assemblies of worship. He is always present with His people, but His ever-abiding presence within us draws out our hearts and inspires us in public worship and fellowship.