“If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, pray, seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” -- 2 Chronicles 7:14 (RSV)
After all those months. After all that hard work. After all that money spent. Finally! We’re moving back into a heated sanctuary on Communion Sunday, March 4. Our joy and happiness will be real. What a long journey it felt like along the way. But we do hope that everyone will agree that it was worth it – a beautiful sanctuary as warm (in the winter) as the hearts that joined together to finance it, and as cool (in the summer) as the heads that figured out how to do it.
Maybe now we have just a little idea of what the Israelites felt when they dedicated the very first temple. It’s no wonder we hear about such a grand celebration and worship service by the nation of Israel in 1 Kings 8 and 2 Chronicles 6 and 7. It has seemed like such a long time since we’ve been able to worship in the sanctuary. A number of folks (certainly including Bill Long and Stephanie Jones), must have gotten a little tired of setting up and tearing down chairs in the lower fellowship hall week after week for over a year. It was the same old routine over and over again.
Solomon and the Israelites would just smile at us. Really? A year without being in a sanctuary? Try 300 years! That’s how long the Israelites had been waiting to have a permanent house of worship. Actually, they never even had a temple to worship in. It was only at the time of Moses that God first gave instructions for a movable tent-like sanctuary known as the tabernacle. That was their primary place of worship for over 300 years.
Not only had it been a long time, but it had also been a lot of hard work. In addition, they had spent a lot of money on the project. We know a little bit about that. We’ve had plenty of discussions about budget regarding the sanctuary. We tried to keep costs down as much as possible. But for the Israelites, finally after all those years, after all that hard work, and after all that money spent - it was dedication day! Surely they had built a house fit for a King. Solomon’s temple was a structure that was worthy of bearing his name throughout history. His father, King David, had always wanted to build this temple. Yet God planned that Solomon would carry out his father’s plans. What a beautiful, grand, and glorious structure it was, made by the richest king perhaps in the history of the world.
So, why in all the world would the Israelites do such an atrocious thing as we hear in I Kings 8 and 2 Chronicles 6 and 7. They had spent so much time and so much money on the temple. I’m sure the day before the dedication they scrubbed that temple from floor to ceiling. Why in all the world would they want to slaughter a mass of animals? Look at these texts. Solomon offered a sacrifice of fellowship offerings to the LORD: 22,000 cattle and 120,000 sheep and goats. What were they thinking?
If you remember the history of the Israelites (and their kings), they turned away from God many times. When you think about it, those Israelites had no business being in that beautiful sanctuary in the presence of the Lord. Solomon had no business being in the sanctuary, let alone leading the assembly of Israel in worship. The temple was a house fit for the king, but the king surely didn’t deserve to be there.
They knew that. So they sacrificed. They sacrificed 142,000 animals as a thank offering for the peace they had in the Lord’s forgiveness. It must have been unbelievably messy. The Israelites would never forget the message God had sent them through the sacrificial system of the Old Testament. When there is sin, there must be death and blood to pay for it. Because their sins had been paid for, the Israelites could finally celebrate and gave thanks to the Lord.
Romans tells us that all have sinned and come short of the glory of God, and that the wages of sin is death. So should we slaughter 142,000 to reconcile our relationship with God? No. There already was death. Not 142,000 animals. Just one Lamb.
No more sacrifices are needed. We don’t have to sacrifice 142,000 animals. We don’t have to pay for it. We don’t have to earn it. The Lamb of God already paid for it. He already earned it. The apostle Paul wrote: “It is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God - not by works, so that no one can boast.” Forgiveness is ours - freely and fully.
Those 142,000 animals sacrificed by Solomon and the Israelites were actually not a payment for sin. They were a thank offering, a peace offering. They were thanking the Lord for his great mercy and kindness. This is also true of our sanctuary. Moving back into the sanctuary is not for our glory, not for our self-satisfaction. It is not so we can say, “Hey, look what we did,” - even though many of you did make great financial sacrifices to enable this. But ultimately, those sacrifices and our sanctuary are for the King of Kings. The sanctuary is built, heated and cooled for Him. The sanctuary is for the glory of Jesus Christ, our King and Savior. In the sanctuary, in all of our church building, in our congregation, and in our hearts and lives, to Him be all glory forever and ever. Let us move with joy back into the sanctuary as we move toward Easter and the celebration of the Resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus, the King of Kings.
Yours and Christ's,
Sunday School Hours - 9:00am Opening Exercises
9:15am Sunday School Classes Begin
Sunday School Classes are available for ages: 4 through Adult.
Morning Worship Service – 10:30am
Mike Snow is our Adult Sunday School Classroom teacher this month. The Adult Sunday School class is doing a study on the Book of James.
Tuesdays and Thursdays: 10am. to 2 pm. * Please contact Pastor for appointments at other hours as necessary.
If there is an EMERGENCY in your family or you know of a need please call at any time:
- Pastor Carla (610-659-0314)or Parsonage (856-579-4767)
- Heidi Louis, Moderator (856-371-8791)
- Pat Moore (856-430-0685)
The Council met on February 15, 2018 at 7:00 pm. After Pastor Dave opened with prayer, the Council received and discussed reports from the Worship, Discipleship and Stewardship Committees, as well as report from AB Women. Among the items discussed were the status of the new heating system for the sanctuary (expected to be completed by March 1, 2018), electrical work at the parsonage, the teaching rotation for adult Sunday School, Vacation Bible School, a dress sewing project for overseas ministries, and the ABW Spring Rally and Conference,
The Council then received and discussed the Financial Secretary’s report and the Treasurer’s report. Among the items discussed were the pledges received to date and the amounts spent to date on the sanctuary heating project. The Council also discussed having periodic updates on amounts received to pay back the amounts borrowed from the Foundation Fund to supplement the generous amounts received to date in current donations and future pledges from the congregation toward the heating project, as well as donations received from organizations and individuals outside of the congregation.
Pastor Dave gave a verbal Pastor’s Report, which included an update on Pastor Carla’s progress with physical therapy treatments for her herniated disk.
The meeting was then adjourned with prayer by Pat Moore.
Meet on Sunday, March 11th @ 7:30am at the Piston Diner. Any questions, please call Don @ 856-845-3959.
The Wednesday evening Bible Study group will be meeting on Wednesday, March 14th @ 7pm. at the home of Bill and Dot Sutton. Any questions please see Judy Sanderson. Thank you.
The Owls Lady’s Bible Study meet on Wednesday Mornings in the Adult Sunday School classroom. All ladies are welcome to join us for that hour of joy with God, starting at 10am.
All are invited to join the meeting on Thursday, March 15th at 7pm. in the Adult Sunday School Classroom. Thank you.
In order to help you keep up with recent announcements and the focus of our Worship Service, on any Sunday that you are unable to attend church, please feel free to contact any of us to send you a copy of the bulletin and any inserts that might have been included. Joan Moyer, Chair, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, or
Corann Okorodudu, V. Chair: Email: email@example.com
The Greater Woodbury Cooperative Ministries Food Bank, located at the Seventh Day Adventist Church on the corner of South Barber and Evergreen Avenues, is collecting food and household goods. Please donate food and/or non-perishables to the Food Bank, and they will joyfully take them. If you are able to purchase extra while out shopping, please bring to the Food Bank, from 9:30am to 11:30am on Tuesdays and Thursdays, or please put them in the box in the Narthex. ** Also, remember that you can make a monetary donation to the Food Bank, and they will purchase the much needed food.
PRAYER REQUESTS- Please do not hesitate to call with any requests for prayer. Contact Diane Bradley or the church office to start the Prayer Chain.
You are invited to join in our Easter Tradition regarding flowers for the Sanctuary by purchasing the flower of your choice for our Sunday Easter Service. We will be putting our Easter Flower Insert, for those wishing to donate, in our bulletins beginning Sunday, March 18th. Thank you.
Anyone interested in joining us, we will be meeting on Thursday March 1, AND thurssday March 15th in the Lower Fellowship Hall at 5pm. Any questions please see Boyd Fox.
- Holy Angels Parish
- In St. Patrick’s Lower Church
- Wednesdays of Lent 7pm.
- A Book Study:
- REDISCOVER JESUS, By Matthew Kelly
- PALM SUNDAY- Join us for our morning worship service to start the Holy Week, on Sunday March 25th @10:30am.
- MAUNDY THURSDAY SERVICE- Our Maundy Thursday Service will be held on Thursday, March 29th @7pm. in the Central Baptist Church Sanctuary. Communion will be served.
- GOOD FRIDAY SERVICE- The Good Friday Service Community Worship Service will be held at Kemble Memorial United Methodist Church on Friday, March 30th @ 12pm. to 1pm. Pastor Carla will be preaching the sermon.
- SUNRISE SERVICE- The Sunrise Service will be held down at the Lake behind St. Stephen’s Lutheran Church. Breakfast will be served immediately following for those that would like to stay. More details to follow soon.
- EASTER MORNING WORSHIP SERVICE- The Celebration of our Risen Lord on Sunday, April 1st @ 10:30 am. We look forward to worshipping together in celebration!
How many Choir Directors does it take to change a light bulb? [Nobody knows, because nobody ever watches the choir director.]
And you know who you are!
I fired up the organ again a couple weeks ago (auxiliary heat in the sanctuary had been on for a week or so). After an initial wheeze (most likely some dust in the pipes), the old girl sounded pretty good, even with all the neglect. It will of course be tuned after the full heat is on (we’ll run it a couple days before the tuning at the sanctuary-occupied setting to get things warmed up), but it seems the organ will be able to function whenever we return.
Speaking of returning, we will be returning to some old chestnuts this month: ‘The Palms’ on Palm Sunday, and the ‘Hallelujah’ Chorus on Easter, both with congregational participation. And, Pastor Dave has once again offered to join in singing with the sopranos for all those high notes if Pastor Carla is not up to it. (The choir voted unanimously to accept his gracious offer. Bring your earplugs.)
The choir is working on Lenten and Easter music. We’re planning on singing with the Youth Choir on both Palm Sunday and Easter. The Easter selection, “He Lives Today,” is a setting of familiar words with a new choral arrangement – very rhythmic and energetic. You’re sure to like it.
Having not heard the organ for a while, you may have a favorite hymn you would like to hear played on the old girl. Let me know. I love the hymn tunes, and enjoy improvising on the organ as well as on the piano.
Wishing you a reflective and inspiring Lent.
Boyd Fox, Music Director
Calling ALL children and parents! Summer will be coming before you know it! A great experience for your child is to attend one of the many camps offered to the children of American Baptist Churches by Camp Lebanon, located in Lebanon, New Jersey. Below is the 2018 Camp Schedule. Remember that Central Baptist pays half of all camperships, and if you register early there is even more savings! For more information, please see Larry Grant. Hope you decide to join the fun this summer!
2018 Camping Schedule
|Jun 24 - Jun 30
||Sailing Camp I
|Jun 24 - Jun 30
||Junior I Camp
|July 01 - July 07
|July 08 - July 14
||Performing Arts Camp
|July 08 - July 14
|July 15 - July 21
|July 22 - July 25
||Primary Mini Camp
|July 22 - July 28
||Junior II Camp
|July 22 - July 28
||Sailing Camp II
|July 29 - Aug 04
||Senior High Camp
|July 29 - Aug 04
All school grades listed are GRADE COMPLETED in June 2018
Early Registration Discount Before 05/01/2018
Late Registration Fee After 06/01/2018
The Church Mouse is currently on vacation, sunning himself in Orlando and visiting his cousin Mickey…catch you in April!
Your friend, Chubby Church Mouse
Dress A Girl Flyer
America For Christ Offeriong 2018