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Charmed into Righteousness
The Most Loving God
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SpeakerDwight K. Nelson
Since 1983, Dwight Nelson has served as lead pastor of the Pioneer Memorial Church on the campus of Andrews University. He preaches on the “New Perceptions” telecast, teaches at the theological seminary and has written some books, including The Chosen. He and his wife, Karen, are blessed with two married children and 2 granddaughters.
More In This Series
“Charmed into Righteousness: The Most Loving God”
- John 13:1—“Having loved his own, he them to the end.”
- John Peckham: “Profound love is connoted by the expression ‘to the end,’ likely connoting both and . Herman N. Ridderbos renders it ‘love to the last breath’ and ‘love in the highest intensity.’. . . Further, Christ’s love is here described as ‘for his own,’ a term of to near relations’ in some ancient Near Eastern literature.” (The Love of God: A Canonical Model 149-150)
- Jeremiah 31:3—“‘I have [aheb] you, my people, with an everlasting [ahabah]. With unfailing [chesed] I have drawn you to myself.’”
- Genesis 29:18—“Jacob was in [aheb] with Rachel and said, ‘I’ll work for you seven years in return for your younger daughter Rachel. . . . So Jacob served seven years to get Rachel, but they seemed like only a few days to him because of his [ahabah] for her.”
- God seizes the language of two and declares—that is how much I love you—with the passion of a Lover.
- John Peckham: “Scripture consistently displays God’s intensely and profoundly emotional love for his people.” (147-148)
- 2 Samuel 1:26—“‘I grieve for you, Jonathan my brother; you were very dear to me. Your [ahabah] for me was wonderful, more wonderful than that of women.’”
- God seizes the language of two and declares—that is how much I love you—with the deep love of a friend.
- Exodus 34:6, 7—“And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, ‘The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in [chesed] and faithfulness, maintaining [chesed] to thousands, and forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin. Yet he does not leave the guilty unpunished.’”
- Jeremiah 31:20—“‘Is not Ephraim my dear son, the child in whom I delight? Though I often speak against him, I still remember him. Therefore my heart yearns for him; I have great [racham] for him,’ declares the LORD.”
- John Peckham: “This language depicts profoundly passible [capable of feeling] and intense emotionality, evidenced by the Hebrew idiom . . . which literally refers to turbulent or roaring internal organs and here ‘depicts God’s being churned up with longing for his son.’” (153)
- We have but a faint and dim concept of how the love of God is for us.
- “O Jerusalem, Jerusalem—how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing.” (Matthew 23:37)
- “Turn! Turn from your evil ways! For why should you die, O house of Israel?” (Ezekiel 33:11)
- “Ephraim is joined to idols; leave him alone!” (Hosea 4:17)
- 1 John 4:8, 16—“God is .”
- Romans 5:8—“But God demonstrates His own for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
- 1 John 3:1—“See what great the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called the children of God!”
- 1 John 4:10—“This is love: not that we loved God, but that he us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.”
- John 3:16—“For God so the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”
- Romans 8:35, 38-39—“Who shall separate us from the of Christ? . . . For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
- John 15:13—“Greater has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”
- Ellen White: “The last rays of merciful light, the last message of mercy to be given to the world, is a revelation of [God’s] character of .” (Christ’s Object Lessons 415)
“The Maker of all things loves and wants me.”
Please mark your calendar for Sabbath, June 26, when we will gather both services—in person or online—to celebrate the gift of our Savior in summertime fashion.
Will this be the last time we commemorate the cross with at-home foot washing and prepackaged emblems of bread and wine? It could very well be. But no matter—it will be a high day in worship for us all. If you wish to celebrate communion at home, please stop by the church office this next week (Monday thru Friday noon) to pick your packaged emblems. For on-site worship, you may receive the emblems as you arrive that Sabbath morning.
But how will we celebrate foot washing? We're inviting families and friends to experience Jesus' example in John 13 by washing each other's feet Friday evening where you live. Why not make this foot washing a part of your Friday evening worship as we gather across this community to welcome the Lord of the Sabbath into our homes at sundown?
Then Sabbath morning through music, prayer, the reading, and reflections from the Word (“For the Love of an Animal: Baaa”) let's throw wide our hearts to the Christ we love to worship. "Do this in remembrance of Me" (Luke 22:19).
Do you like chess, or want to learn how to play? You can make new friends and build new skills like critical thinking, strategizing, and self-control while playing this classic game. Join us on Sunday afternoons, 3-5 p.m. in the Commons. Register today: churchteams.com/m/Register.asp?a=MThGZzJLQ0FnSnc9
Local Church Budget
Naaman was the commander of the Syrian army, a great and honorable man in his nation. But he was a leper. During one of the conquests against Israel, Naaman captured a young girl and gave her to his wife as a maid. The Bible never gives the name of this precious child, but her influence in the house of Naaman was great. She spoke of the God of Israel who could heal the husband of her mistress.
The wife told her husband about the hope of a cure. Naaman asked the king of Syria to write a letter to the king of Israel requesting healing. After several delays, Naaman arrived at the home of the prophet Elisha. Rather than meeting Naaman himself, Elisha sent his servant with a simple
message: “Go and wash in Jordan seven times.” 2 Kings 5:10
Angry that the prophet did not come out and make a grand display of healing him, and instead, commanded him to wash in a dirty river, Naaman headed home. But his servants urged him to follow the command of the prophet and wash 7 times in the Jordan. When he did, God healed him of leprosy.
A little girl shared with her mistress. The woman shared with her husband. Her husband shared with the king of Syria. Today, we can do the same. When we give to the local budget, the funds are used to help share the gospel with others. Your name may never be known, but by sharing—like the little maid—lives will be changed just as Naaman was.
—North American Division Stewardship Ministries
The estimated number of widowed persons worldwide in 2020 was approximately 350 million, with the large majority, approximately 80 percent, being widowed women. But, the actual number is likely to be much higher and to grow further as the coronavirus and its related effects on health continue to rage around the world. Here are some tips to help those grieving:
Bible verses of comfort to share in a card:
- "For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 8:39)
- "Don't be afraid, for I am with you." (Isaiah 41:10)
- "The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble." (Psalm 9:9-10)
- "Those of steadfast mind you keep in peace—because they trust in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for in the Lord God you have an everlasting rock." (Isaiah 26:3-4)
What is appropriate to say to a grieving widow/widower:
- "I'd love to make you dinner and drop it off tomorrow night if that's okay with you."
- "I am here for you and care about you."
- "Know that I am here to support you."
- "I am here anytime you'd like to talk."
- Don't push for details. Let the bereaved talk about their loved one. Be a good listener. Elderly spouses, in particular, will likely want to talk and tell stories about the spouse. Don't bring up other people's losses. Let the spouse focus on his/her loss.
What is appropriate to do for a grieving widow/widower:
- Soon after the death, show up at their door and say, "I'm here to clean your house, or polish your shoes, or take out the trash, or shovel snow. People are numb after such a loss and will need help with simple things. One friend stayed overnight with a new widow until her sister arrived. She also met people at the door, wrote down names of visitors, and put food in the fridge.
- Sit with them in church. It’s difficult for many to return and sit alone.
- Call them from time to time or send occasional cards.
- Invite them to be part of a small group.
- If they have young children, offer to babysit one day so they can have time to do something without worrying about the kids.
- Ask them to help you in an outreach activity.
- Include them in holiday plans. This is a particularly wrenching time for the bereaved.
Above all, continue your friendship. Don’t stop including them in your social activities just because they are no longer part of a couple.
–General Conference Ministries
Michigan Camp Meeting will be available for live streaming June 18–26 at www.misda.org/livestream2021. The theme this year is "How Much More".
It's time to stop worrying about money! In Financial Peace University, you'll learn the biblical truths to help you keep a budget, beat debt, and build wealth! Class begins Tuesday, June 8, 2021 (6:30—7:30 PM).
A.U. Eats is back! Offering chef made vegetarian/vegan meals delivered to your door. Go to GET.CBORD.com to place your order or for more information call 269-471-3161.
Join Timeless Tours next March 16-27, 2022 for an unforgettable tour to ancient Egypt. Two experienced biblical archaeologists will be your guides. For more information contact Timeless Tours through Stefanie Elkins at email@example.com. You can also learn more about the tour, find application forms, payments, itineraries and more via our website; www.digtheadventure.com.
Mommy and Me is now Preschool Pray & Play! Our goal is for our new name to reflect the way we welcome ALL caregivers--moms, dads, nannies, grandparents, babysitters, etc.—as well as our faith-based approach to friendship and play.
Pray and Play is a great group for caregivers and children ages 0-5 to meet new people, make friends, sing, pray, and play together. This year, we'll be meeting through the summer months, and we'd love you to join us! Text PLAYINFO to 269-281-2345 to be notified about upcoming meetings/events, or join online.