The Navigator: 9.24.2020

THIS SUNDAY, 9/27

Preacher:  DL Lowrie

Lord’s Supper Online:  Sunday evening, Pastor Lowrie will be leading us, virtually, in the Lord’s Supper, as he did in April when we were not meeting due to COVID.  You will be able to access the video of him leading sometime Sunday afternoon or evening, and, as such, will be able to observe the Lord’s Supper at your convenience in your own home with family and/or friends.

 

THIS SUNDAY, let’s say thank you to Jordan Morales

As I mentioned a few weeks back, our Youth Pastor, Jordan Morales, resigned to take a teaching position at Southcrest Christian School here in Lubbock.  Her last Sunday is this coming Sunday, Sep. 27th.  Let’s say thank you  in between, and after, our morning worship services by bringing thank you notes and/or gift cards.  The reception will be in the Commons.

 

A Brief Biblical Principle from this Past Wed. Evening’s Time of Learning:

Following Jesus’ “Bloodiest Sermon”, he offers an invitation to appropriate his message to embrace him not merely as a good teacher or miracle worker, but as Messiah, Lord and Savior.  Far from the responses we’ve witnessed at a Billy Graham Crusade, John records:

“From this time many of his disciples turned back and no longer followed him.” (John 6:66)

The Greek word for disciple literally means student or learner, and hundreds of these disciples hung out and around Jesus – but for all the wrong reasons.

These were false disciples.  They had no personal faith in Jesus.  They wanted sizzle, but not substance.  They wanted an A on the test without having to study.  German pastor/martyr, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, sums up the attitude of a false disciple best in his book, The Cost of Discipleship (my copy is well-worn), where he describes what he calls Cheap Grace.

“Cheap grace is the deadly enemy of our Church. Grace without cost!  The grace, we suppose, is that the account has been paid in advance; and, because it has been paid, everything can be had for nothing. Cheap grace means the justification of the sin without the justification of the sinner.  Cheap grace is the grace we bestow on ourselves.  Cheap grace is the preaching of forgiveness without requiring repentance, communion without confession.  It is grace without discipleship, grace without the Cross, grace without Jesus Christ.”

Apparently, there will be many false disciples on Judgment Day learning for the first time that their decision not to embrace Christ by faith was a death sentence for all eternity.  Jesus offers this haunting warning:

“On that day [of judgment] many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.’ – Matthew  7:22-23

Which disciple are you?

 

Our Children’s Pastor, Dana Kluzek, shared the following story this past week in Staff Meeting.  I asked her permission to share it here.  It will warm your heart and remind you all Jesus is doing in our midst:

This past Sunday we started a program in the Children’s Ministry called Bible Buddies.  The kids adopt a Bible Buddy (stuffed animal) that they will read their Bible to.  They also receive a book that contains 30 different age-specific Bible readings for them to read to their buddy and a place to journal about what they read.  Once they complete those readings, they can return the book for a prize and another book.  The purpose of this program is to get kids into the habit of reading their Bibles daily.  The kids were all very excited about this program, and couldn’t wait to adopt!  One of our kids was supposed to go to their grandparent’s house last weekend, and she refused to go until her mom assured her that she would pick up a Bible Buddy and study book for her.  We had another kid who was going to be out the Sunday of the adoptions, and she also came to me and wanted to be sure that she didn’t miss out on adopting a Bible Buddy.  I let her choose one and set it aside for her so that she would have the one she wanted.  On Sunday, all of our Buddies were adopted except for 6 and we ran out of the 1st-3rd Grade Bible Read-Along books.  We also provided each family with a book for the parent or guardian titled “5 Things To Pray for Your Kids.” 

 

 

And, speaking of our Children’s Ministry…

Fall Fest! Sort of…

Due to COVID (it seems like I’ve begun most of my statements with that phrase this year), we will not be hosting our traditional Fall Fest in late October.  However, Dana and her brilliant team will be putting together “Fall Fest Bags” for children.  These bags will contain resources for knowing Jesus, info about BHBC and, of course, candy.  Dana has let informed us to let folks know that we can begin collecting candy now.

 

IN DEFENSE of the CHRISTIAN FAITH: Human Consciousness

Dr. John Lennox is a renowned scientist from Oxford University, as well as a towering figure within the discipline of Christian Apologetics. Allow your faith to be strengthened as you listen to Dr. Lennox use human consciousness as a powerful defense for our faith.  The clip is under 4 minutes in length:

 

For a list of Search Team members, or to know the steps for communicating with the Team, please see click here and scroll down. Pray for them!

 

ENCOURAGEMENT

For Pastor Lowrie’s most recent sermon, click here.

For my lesson on the conclusion of John 6 this past Wed evening, click here.

 

QUOTE of the WEEK

“We may be, in part, products of our past: but if the gospel is true, we do not need to be prisoners of it.” – Andy Bannister

 

LAUGHTER IS GOOD MEDICINE

 

SOUL FOOD: My Least Favorite Book in the Bible

Click here to see why.

Soli Deo Gloria, Nick

That Navigator: 9.17.2020

THIS SUNDAY, 9/20

Preacher:  DL Lowrie

 

Offering Totals Update:

After more offerings and pledges were turned in after Sunday, the following figures are current:

Cash given on Sunday:  $35,000

Pledges for next twelve months:  $285,000

 

Wednesday Evenings Resume for BHBC Student Ministry!

A huge thanks to our student ministry volunteers for loving God and loving students.

Students will meet in the FLC at 6:30 throughout the Fall Semester:

10/7 – Group 1 testimonies

10/14 – Family Night with Dana

10/21 – 11/4 – Group 2, 3 & 4 testimonies

11/11 – Family Night with Dana

11/18 – Help students prepare and share testimonies

11/25 – Thanksgiving holiday

12/2 – Family Night with Dana

 

Online Lord’s Supper – 9/27

As we did in April due to COVID, Pastor Lowrie will lead us, virtually, in the observance of the Lord’s Supper the evening of Sep. 27th.  After being recorded ahead of time, the video will be published on the BHBC web site on the evening 9/27.  Since the video will remain on our web site, you and your family can observe the ordinance privately in your home any time that is convenient for you.

 

A Brief Biblical Principle from this Past Wed. Evening’s Time of Learning:

In John 6:16-24, we find the familiar passage recounting Jesus walking on the surface of the Sea of Galilee.  John doesn’t mince words as he describes the reaction of the tough, weathered fishermen:  “they were terrified.”

Jesus comforts the disciples by assuring them, “It is I; don’t be afraid.”

But there’s more to Jesus’ statement here.  Much more.

The Greek words used for “It is I” are the same Greek words used for each time Jesus proclaims “I Am” throughout John’s gospel.  Using God’s covenant name given to Moses at the burning bush, the Jews knew exactly what Jesus was saying:  “I AM the Word made Flesh, I AM Almighty God.”

Life, under normal circumstances, can be scary.  Add COVID to that and the anxiety of many has gone through the roof.  Regardless of how rough the waters become, listen.  And what you’ll hear is Jesus saying, “I AM here.  I’ve got you. Trust me.”

 

Fall Fest! Sort of…

Due to COVID (it seems like I’ve begun most of my statements with that phrase this year), we will not be hosting our traditional Fall Fest in late October.  However, Dana and her brilliant team will be putting together “Fall Fest Bags” for children.  These bags will contain resources for knowing Jesus, info about BHBC and, of course, candy.  Dana has let informed us to let folks know that we can begin collecting candy now.

 

The Mary Hill Davis offering is the annual cooperative offering led by the Baptist General Convention of Texas.  Unlike the Lottie Moon Offering in the Spring, which is given for foreign missions, the Mary Hill Davis Offering goes toward church-starts and mission strictly in the state of Texas. For the next two Sundays, 9/20-9/27, we will highlight this mission emphasis, inviting people to give.

 

JORDAN MORALES – Farewell Reception: 9/27; Commons

Please bring thank you notes and/or a gift card to show Jordan how grateful we are for the Lord sharing her with us.

 

For a list of Search Team members, or to know the steps for communicating with the Team, please see click herePray for them!

 

ENCOURAGEMENT

For Pastor Lowrie’s most recent sermon, click here.

For my lesson on John 5 last week, click here.

 

QUOTE of the WEEK

In regard to God shielding Moses with his own hand to protect him from dying from the exposure to God’s glory (Exodus 33:18-23), Tim Keller comments:

“Moses is protected from God by God.  That’s the gospel.”

 

LAUGHTER IS GOOD MEDICINE

From the mouths of babes…

 

SOUL FOOD:  The Agnosticism of Science

A complement to last week’s blog.  You can read the blog here.

Soli Deo Gloria, Nick

 

The Navigator: 9.11.2020

THIS SUNDAY, 9/13

Preacher:  D.L. Lowrie

***Ingathering Day – both morning worship services

The Offering: Two Sundays ago I presented the biblical framework behind the “special offering” to inaugurate our new giving campaign to retire the debt incurred from our most recent construction.  This Sunday, just prior to the sermon, we will ask the people to leave their seats and make their way to the front (this will be an organized procedure) and place their Pledge Card and/or special offering in a basket located on the Communion Table.

To ensure no one feels awkward for not choosing to participate, we will communicate to the people they should remain seated if (1) they have already turned in their Pledge Card, (2) are not physically able to join the procession, or (3) they are still praying about what God would have them give.  This will be a celebration.

Concert of Prayer:  Sunday evening, 6pm – We are asking our people to return to the Worship Center Sunday evening at 6pm for a time of celebration and intentional prayer.  There will be music, testimony, scripture, and, of course, prayer.  Afterward, we will move to the FLC for fellowship and a light snack.  It will be good to restore more fellowship among our people.

Between Now and Sunday morning – I am asking you – the shepherds of our small group flocks – to enter into intentional periods of prayer with your class as we quickly approach Ingathering Day this coming Sunday.  “If my people,…will pray…”

 

THANK YOU, JORDAN MORALES

As I mentioned a few weeks back, our Youth Pastor, Jordan Morales, resigned to take a teaching position at Southcrest Christian School here in Lubbock.  Her last Sunday is Sep. 27th.  Let’s say thank you that morning in between, and after, our morning worship services by bringing thank you notes and/or gift cards.  The reception will be in the Commons.

 

One principle from this past Wed’s time of learning:

Jesus said to him, “Get up, take up your bed, and walk.” – John 5:8

Brief context: Jesus is in Jerusalem and sees a number of people lame, blind and otherwise ill and incapacitated.  He walks up to one man who, the scriptures tell us, had been in his crippled state for 38 years.  Let that sink in:  thirty. eight. years.  Jesus simply looks at him and says, “Get up, take up your bed, and walk.”  This man hasn’t walked in 38 years.  His ligaments are non-existent.  His muscles are all atrophied.  He must be thinking, “That’s impossible.”

Biblical Principle:  God often asks us to do the seeming impossible.  He whispers to us, “I want you to forgive (that person who hurt or betrayed you.)”  “I want you to attempt to reconcile your relationship (with your estranged friend/relative.)”  “I want you to trust me with (your devastating disappointment.)”  “I want you to share your faith (with an acquaintance you suspect is resistant, or even hostile, toward the Christian faith.)” And so on.

A frightened and very young Mary replied to the angel, Gabriel, “How can this be, [how can I be pregnant], since I am a virgin?”  Gabriel replied, “Nothing is impossible with God.”

Paul wrote,

“I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.” – Philippians 4:13

By the way, the crippled man got up, rolled up his mat, and, for the first time in almost 4 decades, walked away.  We get up each morning like every other morning, but we never know what a day may bring.

In way of celebration & excitement – you know my heart so, hopefully, I don’t need to qualify the following with making certain you understand I don’t share this in way of boasting. (There’s no one less impressed with themselves than me.)  Further, I will not mention this often.  I simply want you to know how Christ is working in our midst.  In addition to the crowd we are having on Wed. evenings, this past message was viewed Wed evening by over 300 people on Facebook Live.  Soli Deo Gloria

 

PARKRIDGE ANNUAL BANQUET: Can you join me?

The annual Parkridge Pregnancy Center Banquet is Thursday evening, 9/17, at the Lubbock Civic Center.  BHBC has reserved a table for 8.  I am still looking for four people who might like to attend with me, Michelle, and D.L. & Alice Lowrie.  The meal is wonderful and the guest speaker, Bob Goff, is outstanding.  The only cost for the evening is your time.  Help me fill up our table!

 

For a list of Search Team members, or to know the steps for communicating with the Team, please see click herePray for them!

 

ENCOURAGEMENT

View Pastor Lowrie’s most recent message here.

 

QUOTES of the WEEK

And…

Sometimes Satan’s strongest attacks come after a victory. ‘So let the one who thinks he is standing be careful that he does not fall.’ 1 Cor 10:12

One more…

“The gospel is complex enough to keep theologians and philosophers busy writing learned tomes for years, and yet simple enough for a child to grasp the essentials.” – Francis Schaeffer

 

LAUGHTER IS GOOD MEDICINE

 

SOUL FOOD: Is Christianity Anti-Science?

Read the blog here.

Solus Christus, Nick

The Navigator: 9.3.2020

THIS SUNDAY, 9/6

Preacher:  DL Lowrie

NOTE: OFFICES CLOSED for Labor Day

INGATHERING DAY:  9/13 – both morning worship services

The Offering:

This past Sunday I presented the biblical framework behind the “special offering” to inaugurate our new giving campaign to retire the debt incurred from our most recent construction.  On Sunday morning, 9/13, just prior to the sermon, we will ask the people to leave their seats and make their way to the front (this will be an organized procedure) and place their Pledge Card and/or special offering in a basket located on the Communion Table.

To ensure no one feels awkward for not choosing to participate, we will communicate to the people they should remain seated if (1) they have already turned in their Pledge Card, (2) are not physically able to join the procession, or (3) they are still praying about what God would have them give.

I can promise you this will be extremely exciting and celebratory.  Personally, I cannot wait to be a part of it.

Concert of Prayer:  Sunday evening, 9/13; 6pm

We are asking our people to return to the Worship Center that evening at 6pm for a time of celebration and intentional prayer.  There will be music, testimony, scripture, and, of course, prayer.  Afterward, we will move to the FLC for fellowship and a light snack.  It will be good to restore more fellowship among our people.

Between Now and 9/13

As I stated this past Sunday morning, I am asking you – the shepherds of our small group flocks – to enter into intentional periods of prayer with your class as we quickly approach Ingathering Day on the 13th.  “If my people,…will pray…”

 

SPEAKING OF PRAYER…

I have a few books of centuries-old prayers that I read through from time to time.  The Bible is replete with recorded prayers.  The Psalms, alone, contain 150 of them.  You’ll find the longest recorded prayer in Nehemiah 9. When people ask me to help them learn how to pray I encourage them to begin by reading through prayers already given to us by God in His Word.  Below is a prayer from a book of prayer I have titled, The Valley of Vision.  From the 18th century.

Lord, your departure (ascension following your resurrection) was not a token of separation, but a pledge of your return.

On that day, this corruptible shall put on incorruption. This mortal, immortality. This natural body, a glorious body. This weak body, a body of power.

Beyond the grave is resurrection, judgment, acquittal, dominion. Every event and circumstance of my life will be dealt with – the sins of my youth, my secret sins, the sins of abusing your name, of disobeying your Word – all will be judged.

Yet, that day is not a horror to me. For your death has redeemed me, your Spirit fills me, your love animates me, your Word governs me.

I have trusted you and you have not betrayed my trust. O God, keep me in this faith, and ever looking for Christ’s return.

Amen

 

KCBD WEEKEND METEOROLOGIST, KELLY PLASKER

By now, many of you have read or watched the story of Kelly Plasker’s taking of her own life this past Sunday.  Her story has not only been widely covered locally, but also covered nationally by the Today Show and Fox News.

About two years ago, Kelly’s son, Thomas, took his own life.  He was 19.  Due to my own history with my son, Jordan, a mutual friend connected me to Kelly.  And, over the past two years, we have had a number of visits as I counseled and encouraged her how to survive the suicide of a child.  Alas, Kelly lost that psychological battle last Sunday.

Kelly leaves behind two teenage children.  Her daughter called me on Monday and asked me to preach her mom’s funeral.  (I met with Kelly’s children today.) The service is Saturday morning, 10am, at Lake Ridge Chapel, and will be broadcast all over.  You can read details regarding the service here.

Would you please lift this precious family to Jesus?  Would you please pray for me as I prepare to offer them, and all those watching, hope in the Cross of Christ?

 

PARKRIDGE ANNUAL BANQUET

The annual Parkridge Pregnancy Center Banquet is Thursday evening, 9/17, at the Lubbock Civic Center.  BHBC has reserved a table for 8.  I am looking for four people who might like to attend with me, Michelle, and D.L. & Alice Lowrie.

 

THE GOSPEL OF JOHN

Our mid-week times of learning have been strongly attended and heavily viewed on BHBC’s Facebook page.  To God be all glory.

Here’s a nugget of truth from this past Wed. evening from John 4.  Jesus has kept his divine appointment with an outcast, immoral Samaritan women at the site of Jacob’s Well near Sychar, en route with his disciples to Galilee from Judah.

Unlike Nicodemus in chapter 3, the woman immediately believes in and puts her faith in Jesus.  What happened next in this woman can only be described as a rhapsodical eruption of joy and freedom.  Let’s pick up the story with vss 28 and following:

Then the woman left her water jar, and went into the city and began telling the people, “Come, see a man who told me all the things that I have done! Can this be the Christ?” So the people left the city and were coming to Him…  Now many Samaritans from that city believed in Him and trusted Him [as Savior] because of what the woman said

She was so excited she forgot to take her water jar back to town with her!  The one evangelized immediately becomes the evangelist!  And she does this without any concern about what people knew of her former way of life. Why should she?  In a matter of seconds her spirit was quickened/awakened to the Holy Spirit of Almighty God.  She no longer was carrying the crippling weight of shame and guilt.  She was a new creation! All the old has passed away; behold, the new has come.  In a nutshell, she leaves behind the water jar as she now carries in herself the Living Water.

O God, ignite this kind of passion in us that we might boldly and lovingly share our faith.  Amen

 

WHAT DOES IT MEAN WHEN THE BIBLE SAYS GOD IS JEALOUS?

It’s a part of the 2nd of the 10 Commandments.  And Moses makes it clear later on:

“Do not worship any other god, for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God.” (Ex. 34:14)

I heard a celebrity once say condescendingly, “I just can’t respect a God who says he’s jealous.”

At face value, I would agree with the celebrity.

But that is the mistake we make when we are irresponsible in our study of scripture.

God’s jealousy is nothing like human jealousy.

I could go on.  But this brief quote from philosophy professor, Paul Copan, Ph.D., from his book Is God a Moral Monster? is a solid, concise explanation.  Peace, nw

 

 

For a list of Search Team members, or to know the steps for communicating with the Team, please see click herePray for them!

 

ENCOURAGEMENT

View Pastor Lowrie’s most recent message here.

To view my message on John 4 from this past Wed. evening simply go to Bacon Heights’ Facebook page, scroll down and click on the video.

 

QUOTES of the WEEK

“For too long, we’ve called unbelievers to ‘invite Jesus into your life.’ Jesus doesn’t want to be in your life.  Your life’s a wreck.  Jesus calls you into His life.  And His life isn’t boring or purposeless or static.  It’s wild and exhilarating and unpredictable.” – Russell Moore

And…

Very good to remember:  [Jesus said], “Temptations are inevitable, but what sorrow awaits the person who does the tempting. (Matthew 18:7)

 

LAUGHTER IS GOOD MEDICINE

Also… Deep Thoughts:

1) When one door closes and another door opens, you are probably in prison.

2) Cop: Please step out of the car.  Driver:  I’m too drunk.  You get in.

3) If you’re sitting in a public place and a stranger takes the seat next to you, just stare straight ahead and whisper, “Did you bring the money?”

 

SOUL FOOD: American Idol

Idols come in all shapes, sizes and forms.  And many of us – even Christians – can still be guilty of worshiping them.  Read the blog here.

Soli Deo Gloria, Nick