04/21/17

CPC THIS WEEK
THE E-NEWSLETTER OF CHRIST PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH April 21, 2017

“Not Afraid of Burning in Hell”

The timing of commercial could not have been more interesting, at least for me - I saw it for the first time just before Easter. It was an ad from the FFRF – Freedom from Religion Foundation – starring none other than Ronald Reagan. The difference between the father/son duo could not be more striking; especially on this issue.

The topic regarding the relationship between Church and State continues to be hotly debated. Even with that being the case, some TV networks have decided not to play the FFRF ad – to both the shock and sorrow of many who side with their particular point of view. My point today is not to discuss the ad, or even the nuances that exist in the church/state relationship; trust me, the question isn’t going away anytime soon!

What did surprise me about the ad was Ron Reagan’s religious stance. First, I knew that he had separated from more familiar family political ties by aligning himself with the Democrat Party. But I was completely unaware of his upfront, unabashed testimonial of being an atheist – I’ve got to get out more. Even with all of that, it was his sign-off that really caught me off guard. After making his plea for solicitations came this:

“Ron Reagan, life-long atheist, not afraid of burning in hell.”

“Not afraid of burning in Hell” – Wow! Rarely have I ever heard someone put it quite that way. Yes, according to his own admission, Ron Reagan has been a life-long atheist; at least from adolescent years. And, as an atheist, I should more than expect that kind of inference. Still, I did find it interesting that he admitted that there even is a hell. But I’m sure that’s just his set-up for his fearless affirmation about flames. And, Ron Reagan is not alone, clearly. But he’s wrong. And in this case, there isn’t safety in numbers!

Jesus taught about hell – a lot! It’s one of His dominant themes in the Gospels; and that message is carried through the letters of both Paul and Peter. The account that most quickly comes to mind is that of Lazarus and the Rich Man in Luke 16:19-31. Listen to these words uttered from flames:

24 And he called out, ‘Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus to dip the end of his finger in water and cool my tongue, for I am in anguish in this flame.’ 25 But Abraham said, ‘Child, remember that you in your lifetime received your good things, and Lazarus in like manner bad things; but now he is comforted here, and you are in anguish.

Time and space doesn’t permit a more exhaustive look at the existence of hell but it’s even become an issue of doubt for men reputedly known as evangelicals; e.g. - Rob Bell. The point is this – there is a hell and it’s hellish. And although Ron Reagan may not be afraid today, one day, except for the work of the Holy Spirit, he will tremble at the horrors of hell!

But there are those who actually can live without the fear of burning in hell – every believer in the Lord Jesus Christ! That’s the great news of the gospel of grace. The Cross of Christ and His Empty Tomb remove the very thing that we do deserve for our sin - Hell! For the believer, there will be no burning, only blessing; no flames of destruction, only fellowship of delight. But most importantly, instead of the absence of Christ for eternity we will enjoy, along with all the saints, His presence forever and ever.

“No condemnation now I dread – Jesus, and all in Him, is mine!”

So pray for Ron Reagan, and all those who live with the false assurance that hell holds no fear for the atheist. We, too, were just as lost at one time; until the Spirit of the Living Christ poured into our hearts the loving- kindness and mercy of our God.

From Fear to Faith, All by Grace,

CPC MINISTRY INFORMATION

SUNDAY'S SERMON
Title:
“The Anticipation of God’s People” Text: Nehemiah 8:1-8
Mr. Jeff Schrage

SUNDAY SCHOOL FOR ALL AGES (Pre-K through Adult): Please plan to stay for Adult Sunday School this week. The Roszells will be sharing about their recent trip to Romania, Kit Joos will share about his medical mission trip to Haiti, and Rachel Weber will be previewing her upcoming mission trip to Malawi.

LIFE MATES LIFE GROUP – will beet at the Harrington’s at noon on Sunday, April 23rd. See Mark or Kari Harrington for more information

ROCK SOLID MEAL MINISTRY – meets at 4:15pm at Rock Solid. Please see Aaron or Emily Fredrick if you would like to help with this ministry

YOUNG MARRIED LIFE GROUP – meets Thursday, April 27th from 6*-7:30pm at the church. See Jeff or Shannon Schrage for more information.

ELDER HOSTED DINNERS – The CPC Elders would like to host dinner in their homes for our congregation. These dinners will be scheduled for Fridays, April 28th and May 5th. If you would be interested in attending dinner with an Elder, please see this week’s Bulletin Insert for more information.

TABLE TALK MAGAZINE – For those with paid subscriptions to Table Talk Magazine, you may pick up your May issue at the Welcome counter.

OFFICER NOMINATIONS – Any additional nominations for church officers (elder/deacon) need to be submitted by Sunday, April 30. Nominations are open to Male members of our church.

YOUNG MARRIED LIFE GROUP meets Thursday the 27th from 6-7:30pm at the church for a study on the book of Acts. For more information see Jeff and Shannon Schrage

ROCK SOLID QUARTERLY OFFERING – Next Sunday, April 31st, we will be collecting the Rock Solid Quarterly Offering

VICTORY LANE CAMP We all want to experience the joy of serving others and to share that joy with the next generation. See how Victory Lane Camp can give you the opportunity to do that through a local summer camp. Read one family’s story here: http://victorylanecamp.org/brewster-blessings/ Learn how to sign up for camp by visiting www.VictoryLaneCamp.org/serve.

MAY CHOIR REHEARSALS – The Choir will rehearse Wednesday, May 3rd as well as the 17th at 7pm at the church

WOMEN’S MINISTRY
Tuesday Morning Ladies’ Bible Study, Old Testament overview, led by Pastor Bob Clark, meets Tuesday

mornings at 8:30 a.m. in the fireplace area at the church.

Inspire – May 11 at 6:45pm -8:45pm in the CPC foyer (350 Henley Rd. Richmond, IN) Dessert & 2 speakers: 1 sharing a Practical focus & 1 sharing part of "Her Story" a testimony of God's faithfulness in her life. Fellowship, Connect, Discuss, Pray.

Two upcoming events for the women of the church as we celebrate God's faithfulness!

A Bridal Dessert has been planned for Emily Swartzwelder (Mindy Deckard's future daughter-in-law) on Thursday, May 18th at 7pm at the Harrington's Home (12 Parkway Lane). Please RSVP to Beth Allen at bethallen87@gmail.com or Beth (765-969-0656). Emily is registered at Kohls, Target and Zola.

A Bridal Brunch has been planned for Kayla Owens Saturday, May 27th at 10am at the church foyer. RSVP to Kariharr12@aol.com or to Kari (765-977-3660). Kayla is registered at Zola.

THE CHURCH IN THE WORLD 

 China: Jailed Pastor Gravely Ill

A pastor who has been in prison for the past 16 months was admitted to the hospital last month with a serious medical condition.

When Wang Hongwu arrived at the prison on March 20 to visit her husband, Yang Hua, she was alarmed to see him being carried out of a vehicle, writhing and shrieking in pain. He had just returned from the hospital, where he had been taken three days earlier when dark, painful lesions appeared on his legs and continued to spread. Prison doctors had given him painkillers but offered no treatment.

On March 23, a government prosecutor advised Yang Hua’s lawyers to apply for permission to have Yang Hua treated at a different hospital. He was transferred to another hospital on March 24, where he was diagnosed with anaphylactoid purpura, a condition that causes inflammation of blood vessels and can affect the kidneys, intestines, joints and skin; leg lesions are a classic symptom. Treatment may involve steroids and, in some cases, surgery.

Yang Hua’s lawyers have filed a request for medical bail so that he can be released from prison during treatment and recovery.

While serving as co-pastor of a large unregistered church in Guiyang, Yang Hua was detained on Dec. 9, 2015, and charged with divulging state secrets. Instead of receiving the typical 10-day administrative detention, he was held for more than a year without trial. On Dec. 26, 2016, he was convicted of the charges and sentenced to two and a half years in prison.

Yang Hua’s Living Stone Church in Guiyang has worshiped openly since 2009, growing to a regular attendance of more than 700 members. The Chinese government has harassed the church since its founding, but the purchase of a new office space for meetings seemed to bring tensions with the government to a new high.

The church’s other co-pastor, Su Tianfu, previously reported that 99 percent of the church’s members have received calls from government officials, pressuring them to leave the church. In addition, church leaders have been continually pressured to join the government-sanctioned Three-Self Church.

Source: VOM Sources Posted: April 4, 2017 ©2017 The Voice of the Martyrs. All rights reserved. CONGRATULATIONS!!!

BIRTHDAYS!

April

2 Phil Bradley

5  Beth Allen

6  Gwinn Gibbs

7  Nicole Scheffler

10  Lori Staifer

11  Titus Moore

13 Brian Cheek 

13 Lance Fowler 

13 LaTonya Todd

15  Benjamin Harrington

16  Emily Fredrick

17  Lydia Golden

19  Angie Bowen

19  Dave Hall

20  Caleb Cook

21  Jennifer Luker

24 Karin Price

28  Lori Fowler

29  Lia Steinfort

30  Tony Angilella

ANNIVERSARIES!

April

15 Robert & Sharon Foust

 Christ Presbyterian Church  -  (765).966.4017  -  350 Henley Rd. Richmond, IN 47374  -  Office@KnowingChrist.net