Joy to the World

December 18, 2014

Christmas would not seem like Christmas without signing and hearing the hymn ” Joy to the World”. Written in the 1700’s by Isaac Watts, it was not intended to be a Christmas Carol but was published in Psalms of David Imitated.
Watts intended the verses to honor Jesus second coming rather than His birth, but over the years the focus has been on the joy that Jesus was born.
The melody is by George Fredrick Handel.
In this troubled world today we need to sing songs of joy. Jesus was born to bring salvation to the world. He was born, died, rose again and IS coming again. JOY to the World.

Luke 2:10
And the angel said unto them, Fear not:for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.

Candy Canes

December 17, 2014

Candy Canes are something that we usually only see at Christmas time. Another tool that can be used to present the gospel.
Candy Canes are inexpensive, most people like them and they are rarely refused if offered as a gift. At the Flea Market last week there were plenty of candy canes to give to the people who passed by.
A smile, a greeting of Merry Christmas and then a question, “Are you 50, 75, or 100% sure if you died today you would go to Heaven?
The results, 5 people trusted Jesus as their Savior.
Why not buy a box of candy canes as you are shopping and use them as a witnessing tool? That would give you 12 opportunities to present the gospel.
SOS soul winners will be at events between now and Christmas. Pray with us for souls.

Romans 1:16
For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ:for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.


December 16, 2014

What do you do with Santa?
You can’t ignore him because he is pictured everywhere. Your children will see and hear about him. Other children will be excited and talk about him.
Do you really want your children to find out you did not tell them the truth?
In our home, having a large family, we did talk about Santa this way.
Santa is pretend. A fairy tale like Cinderella or Snow White. Fun to think about but they are not real.
They were allowed to sit on Santa’s lap and have their picture taken but they knew that he was just a man pretending to be Santa.
The gifts they receive come from Daddy and Mommy because God gives blessings of being able to work.
We had fun with our children and played make believe with them about Santa but always told them the real meaning of Christmas is because it is Jesus birthday.
The manger scene was always in a prominent place in our home. (Still is)
We celebrated His birthday with a cake. Also, taught the true joy is in giving not receiving.
Did this hurt our children? No. They really enjoyed Christmas but never had the pain of finding out that Santa is not real and that their parents had not told the truth.
We always told them not to tell their friends because their Mom or Dad must tell them when it is time for them to know.
Have fun with your children this Christmas. Make some memories that are uniquely yours.

John 8:32
And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

The Reason for the Season

December 15, 2014

Many people are hustling to finish shopping for gifts, running at a fast pace to get the right present, get them wrapped and ready to see the happiness on the face of the recipient.
In all the preparation one thing is not even thought about. The most important Person, the Lord Jesus.
Christmas is a wonderful time of year but let us not leave out the reason for the season, Jesus. God gave us the most precious gift. We don’t have to shop for it or pay for it. All we have to do is accept it.
Jesus paid the price. If you have not received God’s Gift do it now. Ask Him to forgive your sins, believe He died for you and rose again, and call upon Him to save you. Your new life can begin today!

Romans 6:23
For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

“A Christmas Carol”

December 14, 2014

“It is good to be children sometimes, and never better than at Christmas, when its mighty Founder was a child Himself.”
Charles Dickens
Charles Dickens gave us the wonderful story of “A Christmas Carol” which is still popular today and almost everyone has seen or heard this story in one form or another, as the concept has been adapted by many authors.
Charles Dickens was a self educated man who had very little formal education because his father was in debtors prison and Charles was forced to work to provide for the family.
This situation made him determined to better himself and he became an editor, author and openly wrote about the injustices of that era.
He was a professed Christian although he spoke against hypocrisy in organized religion.
He loved Christmas and gave us a wonderful story of the change of heart from cruelty to the reward of giving to others.

Isaiah 9:6
For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given:
and the government shall be upon his shoulder:
and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God,
The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.

Hark the Herald Angels Sing

December 13, 2014

“Hark the Herald Angels Sing” was written in the 1700’s by Charles Wesley. He and his brother John were dynamic preachers in that time and were responsible for revival in both England and America.
They founded the Methodist Church.
Charles wrote hundreds of hymns, first published in the Methodist Hymnal.
He was saved under the preaching of George Whitfield, who also had a part in the lyrics of “Hark the Herald Angels Sing” as he changed some of the words to the hymn as we know it today.
The influence of these great men of the faith are still being felt today. If only we would see men today of such dedication to the preaching of the Gospel.
When you hear or sing this great hymn this season stop for a minute or two and pray for revival.

1. Hark! the herald angels sing
Glory to the newborn King!
Peace on earth and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled!
Joyful, all ye nations, rise;
Join the triumph of the skies;
With th’angelic host proclaim
Christ is born in Bethlehem!
Hark! the herald angels sing
Glory to the newborn King!
2. Hail the heav’n-born Prince of Peace!
Hail the Son of Righteousness!
Light and life to all he brings,
Ris’n with healing in his wings.
Mild he lays his glory by,
Born that man no more may die;
Born to raise the sons of earth,
Born to give them second birth.

Luke 2:14
Glory to God in the highest,
and on earth peace,
good will toward men.

Do You Enjoy Christmas?

December 12, 2014

“You can never truly enjoy Christmas until you can look up into the Father’s face and tell Him you have received His Christmas gift.”
John R. Rice

Many of us love Christmas. It’s my favorite time of the year, people say.
Family, friends, presents, food, parties, decorations and Christmas music are all part of why we love this time of year, and all of those things are enjoyable.
However, if you have not received Jesus as your Savior, there is an emptiness and lack of joy that you may not understand.
God sent His Son that we can be saved. That is the Gift of Christmas.
If you have that emptiness please invite Jesus into your heart and life today. Do you need help or prayer? Call Tom at 813-784-8242 or email and he will help you.

John 3:16
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

Joseph, Husband of Mary

December 11, 2014

Joseph was a good man. Engaged to Mary and most likely looking forward to taking her for his wife, when an angle came to him and told him to not fear to take Mary as his wife as the Child she was carrying was conceived by the Holy Ghost.
He was a brave and righteous man to believe God and take on that great responsibility. He was an obedient person, Joseph took care of Mary and Jesus and we know from scripture that he was still living when JESUS went to the temple at twelve years old.
That is the last mention Joseph in the Bible and he must have died before Jesus started His public ministry.

Matthew 1:24-25
Then Joseph being raised from sleep did as the angel of the Lord had bidden him, and took unto him his wife: And knew her not till she had brought forth her firstborn son:and he called his name Jesus.

Mary, Mother of Jesus

December 10, 2014

Mary, a young virgin, was engaged to Joseph. God chose her to be the mother of the Lord Jesus. When Gabriel came to her she was frightened at first, listened to his message and then was humble and honored. In those days being pregnant without marriage was a great disgrace but Mary was willing to obey.
When the angel told her of Elisabeth’s pregnancy, Mary, went to stay with her. Elisabeth confirmed what the angel had told her because the baby leaped in her womb.
If you have not read and thought about the people in the unfolding Christmas story it would be good to read it again. We learn much about obedience and love of God as we realize that every person was human and had the same emotions, fears, joys and problems we do. Mary is a great example to us and she surely was blessed among women.

Luke 1:30-31
And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary:for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name Jesus.

Zacharias, Faithless

December 9, 2014

Zacharias, husband of Elisabeth, was a righteous and blameless person was childless!
Zacharias was also a priest. One day as he was serving in the temple the angel Gabriel appeared to him and announced that his wife would have a child.
Although Zacharias was moved by the awesome presence of the angel, he could not accept that his aged wife could still give birth. In order to stop him confessing his unbelief he was unable to speak and remained speechless until the day that the baby should be given a name.
The custom was to name the baby after his father but Zacharias asked for a tablet and wrote, his name is John as instructed by the angel. Then he was able to speak.

Luke 1:63-64
And he asked for a writing table, and wrote, saying, His name is John. And they marvelled all. And his mouth was opened immediately, and his tongue loosed, and he spake, and praised God.


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