For your safety, Pioneer Memorial Church offices are now closed until further notice. Pastors and staff continue to work remotely to serve your needs. Read more regarding the COVID-19 Pioneer response here.
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Dwight 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.
Jesus: “If you remain in Me [ are in Christ] and I remain in you [Christ is in ], then you will bear much fruit.”
Two sides to the Salvation Coin:
→ Christ = forgiveness/justification
Christ → = fruit/sanctification
Galatians 2:20—“I am crucified with Christ [ are in Christ]: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me [Christ is in ]: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”
The “Christ is in us” side of the coin:
John 15:5—“‘Abide in Me and I .’”
Galatians 2:20—“Christ lives .”
Galatians 4:19—“My dear children, for whom I am again in the pains of childbirth until Christ is formed .”
Ephesians 3:17—“ . . . so that Christ may dwell in through faith . . .”
Colossians 1:27—“ . . . God has chosen to make known among the Gentiles the glorious riches of this [Gospel] mystery, which is Christ , the hope of glory.”
Revelation 3:20—“‘Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will and eat with that person, and they with me.’”
Jesus—“‘I am the Vine and you are the branches. If you remain in Me and I in you, you will bear much .”
For God—the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit—bearing fruit is a huge deal—because it is the only way to that the branch is truly connected to the Vine.
Luke 13:6-9—“‘If it bears next year, fine! If not, then cut it down.’”
Galatians 5:22-23 NRSV—“The of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”
Job was bearing fruit that showed he had the faith of Jesus: “Though He slay me, yet will I Him” (Job 13:15).
And what is “the faith of Jesus”? “I will put My in Him” (Hebrews 2:13).
There will be a generation at the end of time that will demonstrate the faith of , because they have the faith of .
And the faith of Jesus is revealed in the fruit of the .
Desire of Ages 677: “‘Herein is My Father glorified,’ said Jesus, ‘that ye bear much fruit.’ God desires to manifest through you the holiness, the benevolence, the compassion, of His own . Yet the Saviour does not bid the disciples to bear fruit. He tells them to in Him.”
Mike Mason—“Marriage, even under the very best of circumstances, is a crisis—one of the major crises of life—and it is a dangerous thing not to be aware of this. Whether it turns out to be a healthy, challenging, and constructive crisis or a disastrous nightmare depends largely upon how willing the partners are to be changed, how malleable they are. Yet ironically, it is some of the most hardened and crusty and unlikely people in the world who plunge themselves into the arms of marriage and thereby submit in almost total naiveté to the two most transforming powers know to the human heart: the love of another person and the gracious love of God. So be prepared for ! Be prepared for the most sweeping and revolutionary of a lifetime.’’ (The Mystery of Marriage: As Iron Sharpens Iron 60-61)
One example to follow
Matthew 4:4—“‘It is written: “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every that comes from the mouth of God.”’”
Psalm 40:8/Hebrews 10:7—“‘I desire to do Your will, my God; Your is within My heart.’”
Psalm 119:11—“I have hidden Your in my heart that I might not sin against You.”
Psalm 16:8-10—“I will keep my eyes always on the LORD. With Him at My right hand, I will not be shaken. . . . because You will abandon Me to the realm of the dead, will You let Your faithful one see decay.”
Cameron Schofield: “If you don’t get anything else out of this study, I want you to listen carefully and get this. Take it home with you and do not forget it. How was it that Christ was able to give himself up into the hands of the Father? How was it that no matter how dark the malignity of sin was, how terrible the weight of guilt, how impossible it seemed that there was any way out, how did He conquer? He believed that God would keep His . By faith Christ was victorious! ‘And this is the victory that overcomes the world, even our faith.’ 1 John 5:4. Is your faith the faith of Jesus?” (Heralding the Loud Cry 94)
Desire of Ages 677: “It is through the that Christ abides in His followers. . . . The words of Christ [in the Gospels] are spirit and life. Receiving them, you receive the life of the Vine. You live ‘by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.’ Matthew 4:4. The life of Christ in you produces the same as in Him. Living in Christ, adhering to Christ, supported by Christ, drawing nourishment from Christ, you bear fruit after the similitude of Christ.”
If you want to abide in Christ and want Him to abide in you, everyday ask for the of Jesus as you read the of God.
“Abide in Me and I in you”
Grow Group Opportunities
We're heading into summer, and with that comes new opportunities for Grow Groups!
Grow Groups will meet from June 22–August 3 (just 6 weeks) and will be held online only again this session. Meeting online allows us to seek friendship as well as social, mental, and spiritual engagement together in community, while prioritizing health and safety. Going digital also allows participants who live outside of our local area to join our groups!
If you're interested in leading, please register your group today!
In no way was The Tent normal this year. After all, nothing has been! That is not to say, however, that it was not a win for the Kingdom of God. Although it was online only, God came through in a mighty way! With about 200 different video clips the whole thing came together against all odds. There were decisions for baptism and people tuning in from all over the world!
This was the 7th year of The Tent. Some of our preachers this year were in the first grade when this all began. That year, Pastor Dwight came to Ruth Murdoch Elementary School and asked the 1st graders which of them would like to preach when they were Junior High students. Well, some of those kids preached last week! These messages were driven by the Holy Spirit as they profoundly spoke to events that took place after the messages were even recorded.
It was not just the speakers who did well this year. Micah Leiterman and Marco Sciarabba Badenas welcomed guests every night with intros that were fun and engaging! What was awesome about their video clips was the way that these two students not only wrote the scripts but they filmed and edited the clips together.
The students came together in an incredible way to make the music as well. Each student created their videos for music individually and these were edited together to create music as a team. We had an incredible team of seminary students who helped bring all of this together, and we also depended upon the musical genius of Chuck Reid who did our fine-tuning.
What was most amazing about The (Virtual) Tent was the seamless way all of these pieces made a whole. This is what the Holy Spirit longs to do with us as a church! Imagine what God could do with a church connected to Him! The (Virtual) Tent is a call to action. This is a picture of what God can do in the worst of circumstances with people who are listening to His voice.
We are saddened to inform you that due to COVID-19 FLAG Camp will be canceled this summer. Thank you to each who has applied to be on staff. Please apply again next year for the summer of 2021. We will be working to make next summer a great and safe experience!
For your safety, Pioneer Memorial Church offices are now closed until further notice. Pastors and staff continue to work remotely to serve your needs.
This week I learned of our world church headquarters appeal for prayer throughout the global Seventh-day Adventist family. Originally timed to end during the recently-postponed General Conference session in Indianapolis, our church leaders are calling us to now focus 100 days of praying (March 27-July 4) on behalf of the global coronavirus pandemic. There could hardly be a more urgent need for earnest praying!
A pastor friend of mine, Jim Moon, pointed out a two-verse juxtaposition I'd not noticed before: "When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain, or command locusts to devour the land or send a pestilence among My people, if My people, who are called by My name, will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land" (2 Chronicles 7:13-14). While everyone knows the beloved prayer call in v 14, few of us connect it with the preceding divine action in v 13. "A pestilence among My people" certainly could represent a global pandemic like the coronavirus COVID-19. While Satan is the originator of destructive calamities, what more faith-appropriate response is our collective prayers to the One who can deliver this nation, this world, these people, from the grips of pestilence.
So let's join together in humbling ourselves before God and praying and seeking His face—that our world might be saved and our faith community might yet be mobilized to share the glad tidings of Jesus' soon return.
- Pastor Dwight
Love on the Move
Over the summer and fall of 2019 Pioneer underwent significant physical renovation—including a new roof and a major Sanctuary makeover. During the same time congregation leaders engaged in multiple conversations about our missional renovation—how does a faith community like Pioneer seriously engage and impact the people around us for Christ? From this dialogue emerged a fresh new expression of our Pioneer mission: "Love on the Move."