Not to Be Ministered Unto

Ladies,
I’ve had this tract in my files for years. I remember reading it years ago and feeling very convicted. As I was recently preparing a devotion, I came across it again. I was thrilled when I found it on the web. I hope it is a blessing to you and you can use it as you minister.

                                        WHAT MADE YOU CROSS?
                                               J.H. HORSBURGH, M. A.

“For even the Son of Man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Mark 10:45).

A great fact is here stated concerning the Son of Man. The speaker is our Lord Himself, who in this, as in all matters, left us an example that we should follow in His steps.

                                                   THE INCIDENT
The incident that gave rise to His words is a sad one. Two of His disciples, James and John, wanted to be ministered unto by being granted the chief places in His glory (Mark 10:35-37). When the others heard it, they were highly indignant, for they wanted to be ministered unto by having the chief places themselves. But out of the ferment the Lord brought good. He made it an occasion to remind His disciples that they were not of the world, and that their distinguishing mark must be lowliness and readiness to serve one another.

                                          THE MASTER’S EXAMPLE
“Jesus called them unto Him” (Mark 10:42). Notice the tenderness and pathos here. He had been telling the Twelve about Himself — of the awful betrayal, the cruel sufferings and indignity, the shameful death that awaited Him at Jerusalem (Mark 10:32-34). Surely their hearts are melted? Nay, they seem unable to think of Him. They begin to quarrel among themselves as to who should be the greatest. Picture their flushed faces, their angry tones, their violent gestures! “But Jesus called them unto Him,” and gently quelled the storm. Earthly rulers, He tells them, exercise lordship over others: “but so shall it not be among you: but whosoever desires to be great among you must be your servant, and whosoever of you desires to be first must be the bondslave of all, for even the Son of Man came NOT TO BE MINISTERED UNTO, but to minister, and to give His life a ransom for many” (Mark 10:42-45). In a word, “remember that you are My disciples. The disciple must be as his Master.”

                             “NOT TO BE MINISTERED UNTO”
Evidently this is something which closely concerns us all if we are Jesus’ disciples. It tells us something of what spirit we should have and what our life ought to be today and every day.

The passage tells us that the Son of Man came to minister. This is a great subject. It is not that incidentally He ministered unto a few or too many; but He came to minister. It was His set purpose.

But this wonderful passage tells us something else about the Son of Man. He “came NOT TO BE MINISTERED UNTO.”

We are apt to slur over this, to forget it or perhaps to pass it by altogether unnoticed. The disciples of Jesus are to be “even as the Son of Man” in coming to minister. Yes, and the disciples of Jesus are to be “even as the Son of Man” in coming “NOT TO BE MINISTERED UNTO.”

                                      A PERSONAL TESTIMONY
If a word of personal testimony may be allowed, I should like to say this. In the ups and downs, the wear and tear of daily life, there are few passages of Scripture, which search me as this does. It convicts, rebukes, and condemns me. It is always finding me out! It seems to knock me over at every turn! And, yet, how it encourages, quiets, strengthens, comforts, and helps me!

                                  COMING TO BE MINISTERED
This coming to be ministered unto is the spirit that is in the world. It is at the bottom of disagreements in the nursery, fights in the school, quarrels among private individuals, wars among nations. And, alas! not only in the world is this spirit prevalent but in the Church also. As Christians we do not adequately realize–perhaps we hardly realize at all–how much of sin and failure, how much of vexation and discontent, how much of peevishness and irritability, how much of discord and unhappiness in our lives is due to our COMING TO BE MINISTERED UNTO, instead of coming not to be ministered unto.

Are we not too often cross, vexed, rasped, indignant? Sometimes we show it by a foolish exhibition of temper; sometimes we restrain ourselves, but there the nasty feeling is! And why? — in all probability because we have come to be ministered unto and have been disappointed.

The fact is, we are always wanting to be ministered unto by people, by circumstances, by fortune (“luck,” perhaps you call it), by the weather, by something. To be ministered unto is so natural, so necessary, so proper! We have been brought up to expect it. And if we are thwarted, as we often are, we are apt to get cross, sulky, moody, nervous, and perhaps end by making ourselves miserable, and others too.

How different it would be if, like the Son of Man, we always “came NOT TO BE MINISTERED UNTO”! Take a few illustrations:

                                          YOU ARE SLIGHTED?
You are slighted, ignored, brushed aside. Or your employer, or employee, does not show you proper consideration. Or your neighbor does not treat you with the respect which is due to your position, your abilities, your character. You feel it very much; in fact you are quite upset about it. Why? Is it because you came to minister, and were deprived of the privilege? No, not that at all. It is because your feelings, your rights, your gifts, your position, your dignity, your importance were not recognized. YOU were not ministered unto. And you came to be ministered unto. Hence the storm!

                                             YOU ARE JEALOUS?
Or consider that most hateful thing, jealousy. What is it? Another is praised or put before you. Another does better than you. Another is more fortunate than you. The honor, the success, the money, the popularity, or the reward has gone to him. You wanted it for yourself. You came to be ministered unto. And because he has been ministered unto, and not you, you are jealous!

                                      “NOT RIGHT TO IGNORE ME”
“But it was not right,” you say, “He had no business to ignore me, to snub me, to treat me as he did. And it was most unjust; that other person ought not to have been placed over my head.” That may be perfectly true, and we make no excuse for wrong and injustice. But you are a disciple of Jesus (I am speaking only to such), and I ask you–if you had come, like your Master, “NOT TO BE MINISTERED UNTO but to minister,” would you be feeling so sore and angry and jealous? The trouble is, you came to be ministered unto.

                                                 NOT PRAISED?
You have been kind to someone. You have rendered him a service. It has cost you something to do it. Naturally you thought your goodness would be appreciated. And it wasn’t, at least not as much as you think it ought to have been. You expected profuse thanks, and quite a little fuss to be made over it. And your friend took it coolly.

You are disgusted. You wish you hadn’t helped him. And you feel half inclined to say in your haste you will never do anybody a kindness again! Why? You have ministered unto another; you have helped someone who was in need. Yes, but you have not been ministered unto. You wanted to be thought exceedingly good and kind and generous. That is to say, you expected to be ministered unto by the thanks and praise, and a little flattery too, perhaps, of the other. Yes, when we come to be ministered unto we do meet sometimes with severe shocks!

                                               NOT CONSULTED?
You are a person of excellent taste, sound judgment, and good common sense. And you find your advice has been ignored–perhaps it was not even asked–in a matter, too, in which you pose as an authority. You cannot understand it. You feel rubbed the wrong way. Your spirit within you is ruffled. Your equilibrium is quite disturbed. What is the trouble? Is it that you came wanting to minister to your friend, and by neglecting to take your advice he has got himself into a sad mess? Not at all. As it happens, he has managed very nicely indeed without your help. The trouble is this: you have not been acknowledged. Your reputation as an “authority” in the matter of taste or judgment has not been ministered unto. You came not to minister but to be ministered unto. And you have been disappointed!

                                   ARE YOU A PUBLIC SPEAKER?
You had been announced to speak on a special occasion. A good audience assembled, and you noticed with peculiar satisfaction that Mr. X., a well-known and influential Christian man, was present. You had a great subject, and waxed very eloquent. At the close you felt extremely pleased with yourself, and you naturally expected Mr. X. to come up at once, grasp your hand, and thank you warmly “for such an able, interesting, and moving address.”

But Mr. X. walked quietly out of the hall without a word! How crestfallen you were! The joy you had felt was extinguished like a snuffed out candle! How was this? You had had the opportunity of ministering to a number of people. But this was not quite what you came for. In your heart of hearts you wanted that speech to minister unto you. It is the old trouble again. You came to be ministered unto.

                                             ABOUT YOUR WORK–
You are a professional man, or you are a man of business. You are doing fairly well. You have enough for all your needs. But you have set your heart on great things. And your success has fallen short of your expectations. This is weighing on your mind. It is a daily trouble to you. You are feeling constantly depressed. What is really at the bottom of it? Is it that you came to minister, and you are disappointed not to be able to minister as fully as you hoped to do? No, not that. But you desire to gratify yourself more; you want to make a bigger show, to be thought more of; you covet to be rich. And your desire for these things is not gratified. You are not ministered unto!

                                                   –AND PLAY
Even our recreation is disturbed by this “coming-to-be-ministered-unto” spirit. You went in for a race, a competition, a game. You failed: you were beaten. How “horrid” you felt! To this day that feeling haunts you!

A Cambridge athlete won a race three years in succession. If he could win it the fourth year, it would be a record. And he was expected to win. But he lost! I am told that for weeks he never smiled. He wanted that race to minister to his fame. He wanted people to be able to point to him and say, “He has done what nobody else has done.” And, because he was not ministered unto, he was crushed.

“The Sorrows of the Playground!” If truthfully written, what tragic stories the book would contain!

Do you play golf? Have you ever seen, not a child, but a full-grown, well-educated man stamp wildly up and down the ground because a poor little golf ball did not minister unto his conceit by going where he desired? Have you ever heard of quite important personages being rendered so unhappy at not being ministered unto by their refractory little golf balls, that they had to give up the game?

“But,” you reply, “in our sports and competitions we are out to do our best and to win. Our aim is to be ministered unto.” Yes, of course. But, after all, it is only a game. And a disciple of Christ must not take his games too seriously. Even on the playing fields he can manifest the “came-not-to-be-ministered-unto-but-to-minister-to” spirit. When he is beaten he can enjoy the satisfaction of knowing that in losing he has been the means of ministering unto the winner.

                                           CHRISTIAN SERVICE
But to return to something more serious than sport. You are engaged in Christian work. You are a Sunday school teacher, or a district visitor, or a church officer. Or perhaps you help at the Mother’s Meeting, the Band of Hope, or the Mission Room. Now you are thinking of giving up the work. Why? Has your health failed? Have you not now the time for it? Are home duties too pressing? No, none of these is the reason. Then you are not wanted? Is there no longer need of your services? Is the opportunity to minister withdrawn from you?

No, the need is as great as ever. The door of opportunity remains wide open. Then why are you giving up? Well, you are tired of the work, so you think you will drop it. You expected it would be an interest to you. It would bring you into touch with others. It would give you a position in the church. In fact, you thought you would like it. And you did like it for a time, but now you are tired of it.

Ah! We are now beginning to understand. You thought the work would minister unto you. And as long as it ministered unto you, you were willing to go on with it. Now that it no longer ministers unto you, you will give it up. But “the Son of Man came NOT TO BE MINISTERED UNTO, but to minister, and to give His life….” And are not you His disciple?

These are only a few illustrations. They may not be applicable to you. But think it out, and whatever may be your walk in life or your relation to your fellowmen, you will be surprised to find how much of your unrest, how many of your troubles, arise from this same cause–COMING TO BE MINISTERED UNTO, instead of coming to minister.

                                               JARS IN THE HOME
You and your friend are living together. Your mutual happiness is interrupted by little jars. You are quick, and your friend is slow. You are economical, and your friend is extravagant. You are punctual, and your friend is unpunctual. You are a very tidy person, and your friend is untidy. You like everything done in your own particular way; your friend does them any old way! So there is constant friction. But why? Is it because you cannot minister to your friend? No, indeed. It is because your love of tidiness or whatever it may be is not ministered unto.

Or perhaps you are the free and easy person, and you are annoyed because your happy-go-lucky way is not ministered unto!

Suppose you both try coming NOT TO BE MINISTERED UNTO, but to minister and to give?

                                                   MERE TRIFLES
It is astounding what a number of little things disturb us. Your plan for the afternoon is upset. You desire a wet day; it persists in being fine. A visitor calls just when you want to go out. You are asked to sing, and your voice is husky and does not do you credit. The answer to your letter has not come. Your request is not granted. You are interrupted in the middle of an interesting book. The pen won’t write. The dress doesn’t fit. The fire won’t burn. Something is wrong with the dinner. The children are so noisy!

Sometimes everything seems wrong. There is nothing big, nothing we can lay our finger upon. But we are always coming into the world with our likes and dislikes, our whims and fancies, our wishes and hobbies, our fads and foibles; and if we are not ministered unto in these little things, we are apt to be distressed and to get put out with ourselves and with everybody else.

                                               THE HAPPY WAY
I am persuaded that the happiness of our lives depends enormously on the spirit in which we come afresh into the world each day. If we come to be ministered unto, we shall soon be fretting and inwardly fuming. But if we come NOT TO BE MINISTERED UNTO, but to minister, it will be very different. “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” It is happier to minister than to be ministered unto. And it is far nobler: “Whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant” (Matt. 20:27).

                                              A WORD OF CAUTION
Now for a word of caution: Our text does not say that we are to be like Stoics; that whatever happens we are not to feel it. Annoyances, rubs, disappointments–the things that we have been talking about — -of course we feel them. (They would be of no use to us if we didn’t feel them.) But they need not distress us. Someone has said: “You cannot prevent a crow from alighting on your head, but you can prevent its building a nest in your hair.” When we come to be ministered unto, we harbor a grievance, we exaggerate it, we give way to it, and we let it build its nest and hatch its mischievous eggs.

When we come NOT TO BE MINISTERED UNTO, but to minister, we do not harbor the grievance, we give it no welcome, we pay it scant attention, we are too occupied to trouble about it. Let us be like Jesus. He was always too busy thinking of others and ministering to them, to concern Himself as to whether He was being ministered unto, or not. One sovereign remedy against touchiness is to be busy caring for your neighbor.

                                   ANOTHER WORD OF CAUTION
Again, our text does not say that we are not to be ministered unto. It does not say that we are always to be slighted, never courted: that we are never to meet with success: that no rewards and prizes are ever to come our way: that we are to go about the world looking for injustice, insults, and ill treatment. Nothing of the kind. There is no harm in being ministered unto.   The Son of Man was often ministered unto, and He appreciated it very much. We shall often be ministered unto, perhaps all the more if we do not expect it. The harm is in coming to be ministered unto instead of to minister: in wanting to be ministered unto: in seeking it, setting our heart upon it, and in being disappointed, chagrined, ruffled, and cross if we are not ministered unto.

We have lingered long talking about this failing–COMING TO BE MINISTERED UNTO–because it is so prevalent, its consequences are so sad, and chiefly because so many of us who are habitually guilty are unconscious of the fact.

                                                     SELF MUST DIE
And now for a few brief words concerning the remedy: Be well assured that at the bottom of the trouble, and in all its ramifications, is SELF. And this old enemy Self must be mortified–put to death. We must give Self no quarter. “I send you (self) my best wishes for your birthday: I hope you are dead,” wrote one. And she was right. “I seemed spoiled for everything but to see (the self in) people die,” wrote another. And she was right. SELF MUST DIE.

With this fact in view, in what a different light must we regard NOT BEING MINISTERED UNTO. Welcome disappointment! Welcome hardship! Welcome slight! Welcome thorns and pricks! These may all be turned to excellent account. To fail in getting what we want may be a piece of good fortune! To be thwarted may be so good for us! To have our wishes crossed may be a positive blessing! To be trampled upon may be a splendid thing! For every time we are not ministered unto, a fresh opportunity is given for Self to die! And the person who snubs us may well be regarded as a friend for administering to our archenemy–SELF–a stout knock on the head! SELF MUST BE MORTIFIED. For it is only as Self dies that we can live the happy and victorious life.

                                              CHRIST MUST LIVE
But it is not enough that Self dies. Something else must happen. Christ must live. Self dying–Christ living. And it is in proportion as Self dies in us that Christ can live in us. Let us not then be afraid of death–death to the Self–Life. It is only as Self dies and Christ lives in us that we shall be able to come fresh into the world each day “NOT TO BE MINISTERED UNTO, but to minister,” and in our tiny measure to give our lives, to sacrifice OURSELVES, for the glory of our God and the good of our fellows.

                                                        A RANSOM
We have not considered at all the last and most precious part of our text: “The Son of Man came . . . to give His life a ransom for many.” (“A ransom for all”–I Tim. 2:6.) Yet, if this should catch the eye of one who is not Jesus’ disciple, this is the part for you to consider.

“The Son of Man came.” He might have stayed in His home of Glory: but He came. And He has given His life a ransom for you. Sin–your sin–has brought you into the grip of God’s Holy Law. Neither good resolutions nor amendments can undo the past. You stand condemned.

But on Calvary’s Cross Jesus has made a full satisfaction for your sins (I Pet. 2:24; I John 2:2). He has died to set you free from the penalty and power of sin. Come, then, as a sinner to God, repenting, and trusting in the atoning blood which has been shed for you, the blood of Jesus Christ which cleanseth us from all sin (I John 1:7). And in a moment all the past is blotted out, and you stand before the Judge justified, no longer Satan’s unhappy slave, but a blood-bought son of the Eternal God.

“Redeemed . . . with the precious blood of Christ” (I Pet. 1:18,19). Now you are called to fellowship with Him, and are privileged henceforth to become a working partner in your Heavenly Father’s business. “He ordained twelve that they should be with Him, and that He might send them forth” (Mark 3:14)

“His servants shall serve Him; and they shall see His face . . . and they shall reign for ever and ever” (Rev. 22:3-5).

Prairie Book Room

Three Hills, Alberta, Canada

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Do You Struggle with Being a People-Pleaser?

If you are  a people-pleaser, you might need to redirect your focus to become more concerned with what pleases God than with what pleases others.

Romans 12:1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

 Remember If I WANT to Keep My Focus on Pleasing God

  • Seek to know His will in each situation of your life.
  • Don’t think that you have to do everything you are asked to do…even in the church!
  • Remember when your heart’s desire is to please God, you will be able to put others’ needs and desires in a healthy perspective.
  • Learn to budget your time by prioritizing your life and determining how much time you will allot for specific people and activities.

                           Priortize by Order of Importance

Your relationship with God
Your family (marriage, children, parents)
Your employment (If you work outside the home)
Your  personal time (time alone with God, time alone with self)
Your church

God should always be number one in your priority list. The problem is that if you’re a people-pleaser, you think that being “a good Christian” means that you must please everyone. You tend to believe that you are putting God first when you say yes to every good cause, especially if it is a church-related.

How do I figure out how to budget my time commitments?

1. Recognize that God wants our families to be number one under Him. When we get over-committed to the point that it robs us of our time that we should be giving our families, it is time to say no.

2. Make sure that we budget some time for ourselves. Jesus was a person who had a vision, a purpose, and a consuming passion, yet when He needed time for Himself, He took it?

Luke 4:42 And when it was day, he departed and went into a desert place: and the people sought him, and came unto him, and stayed him, that he should not depart from them.

The Lord had been up all night healing the sick and casting out demons and was exhausted. Instead of expecting His Father to give Him supernatural strength to continue, He recognized His need for rest and rejuvenation.

In order to nurture our relationships with our heavenly Father, we must budget a quiet time with Him every day. Unless we feed on His Word and allow the Holy Spirit to energize us for the work He has called us to do, we won’t be able to recognize the opportunities He sets before us. It is during our quiet times that the Holy Spirit can help us put things into perspective and guide us into making wise decisions concerning the demands others put on our time.

When God reigns at the top of our list of priorities, we can trust Him to show us where to place other people, ourselves, and all our other involvements. When our relationship with God is right, our relationships with others will fall into place.

Signs of the Second Coming of Christ

Signs of the Last Days and the Second Coming of Christ

Nation shall rise against nation……Matthew 24:7

Earthquakes, famines, and pestilence…..Matthew 24:7

Men shall run to and fro…..Daniel 12:4

Knowledge shall be increased…..Daniel 12:4

Wars and rumors of wars…..Matthew 24:6

Evil men shall wax worse and worse…..I Timothy 3:13

As in the day of Noah…..Matthew 24:37

False Christs…..Matthew 24:5, Mark 13:22

Falling away from the truth…..I Timothy 4:1,2

Will not endure sound doctrine….l Timothy 4:2-4

Scoffers about the Second Coming….II Peter 3:3-14

They shall say peace and safety….I Thess. 5:1-3

Men walking after their own lusts….Jude 16, 17, 18

Heaping treasures for the last days….James 5:3-6

False preachers……Matthew 24:11

Men and horses out of work…Zech 8:10

Automobiles….Nahum 2:3-4

Air ships….Isaiah 31:5; 60:8

Perilous times…..II Timothy 3:1

Disobedient to parents….II Timothy 3:2

Lovers of pleasure….II Tim 3:4-5

Jews returned to Israel….Jer 32:36-42

Coming world dictator …..II Thess2:1-4; Rev 13

Length of his rule…Rev 13:5

Some will worship him….Rev 13:8

Doom to those that worship him ….Rev 14:9-11

Picture of last war….Dan 12:1; Matthew 24:21,27; Jer 25:29-33

Gospel preached among all nations….Mark 13:10

Dear Ladies,
I came across this article and thought if was good. Many times people will come to you and want to know if Christians should be cremated or buried.

Cremation Vs. Burial for the Believer in Christ
Written By John Hamel

Recently a long time friend and supporter of this Ministry asked JHM in writing, “What does the Bible say about cremation?”  I answered that question in writing and thought it would be good to include that answer here.  Please keep in mind I could not answer their question as thoroughly as the Bible does because of time and space limitations.  I simply pointed them in the right direction as follows, encouraging them to study it out for themselves.

As you read JHM’s answer to the question of cremation, we trust it will lead you into further study as well.  Suggestion:  Put the word “buried” into your computer Bible search and see why the Bible on computer is such a wonderful thing that came straight out of the mind of Christ!

“What does the Bible say about cremation?”

Although the word “cremation” is not used in the Bible, the subject is clearly covered.  Burning human bodies after death has always been an occult practice observed by many of the world’s false religions.  It is gaining acceptance in America and other civilized nations basically for two reasons.  Number one, because too many Christians have not bothered to find out what the Bible teaches about it.  Number two, it is considered to be “economical,” “sanitary” and “practical.”

A search of the Scripture reveals that only people who were under a curse for one reason or another had their bodies burned at death.  As a matter of fact, the Lord instructed King Josiah to slay all the priests who had ever burned dead bodies on the altar of God.  (2Kings 23:16, 20)  He then instructed King Josiah to burn those same priests’ bodies on their own altars because they were under a curse for burning other human bodies.  Something to think about, isn’t it?

Elsewhere the sons of Belial came under a curse for their deliberate rebellion.  Anyone who even touched them came under a curse as well and was to be killed on the same day and their body burned. (2Samuel 23:6-7)

Again, the ONLY time someone’s body was burned in the Bible was when they were under a curse.  Honorable people of God in the Bible were always buried upon death, not burned.  Their bodies were placed back into the earth for safekeeping, the same earth from whence they came, until the Lord comes to resurrect those bodies for Eternal service to Him. (John 5:28-29)

In Scripture it was an insult to the Holy Spirit to burn a human body.  This becomes very clear by reading the narrative involving King Josiah mentioned above.  This is even truer in this New Testament Dispensation of Grace because the Believer’s body is “the temple of the Holy Spirit.”  We are to honor God with our bodies not only in life but also in death, not dishonor Him. (1Corinthians 6:19-20)

Just to list a few Biblical examples of burial: Able (Genesis 4:10), Abraham (Genesis 15:5), Sarah (Genesis 23:19), Isaac (Genesis 35:29), Rebecca and Leah (Genesis 49:31), Joseph (Genesis 50:13), Miriam (Numbers 20:1), Aaron (Deuteronomy 10:6), Gideon (Judges 8:32), Jehoshaphat (1Kings 22:50), Saul and his sons (1Chronicles 10:12), King Solomon (2Chronicles 9:31) and the Prophet Elisha (2Kings 13:20), etc.

By reading the Old Testament books of II Kings and I & II Chronicles, you will discover a chronicle of all Israel’s kings who died and were BURIED, not burned.  All of Israel’s kings were buried except for two.  Those two were under a specific curse.

It was God’s will that even the wicked be buried and not burned unless they were under a very specific curse. (Job 27:15; Ecclesiastes 8:10)  Burning a human body was to deliberately point out the fact they were indeed under a specific curse for deliberately defying the Most High God, not because it was “economical,” “sanitary” or “practical.”  In the Old Testament only the CURSED were instructed to NOT be buried. (Jeremiah 16:4, 6; 25:33)

For a human body to be placed back into the earth from whence it came is an honorable thing. (Genesis 2:7)  For a human body to be burned is a dishonorable thing in the eyes of the God Who does not change. (Malachi 3:6; Hebrews 13:8)

Under the New Covenant John the Baptist was buried. (Matthew 14:12)  The Apostle Peter made it perfectly clear that King David was buried and not burned after his death. (Acts 2:29)  Ananias and Sapphira were buried even though their deaths occurred as a result of their lying to God. (Acts 5:6, 9-10)  Stephen was buried after his stoning. (Acts 8:2)  Jesus Himself was buried not burned or cremated. (1Corinthians 15:4)

The Bible says we are BURIED with Christ in Baptism.  It does not say we are “cremated” with Him in Baptism. (Romans 6:4)  Going down into and coming up out of a watery grave symbolizes the Believer’s identification with Christ’s death, BURIAL and resurrection, not His death, cremation and scattering of ashes.

Although there is no single verse of Scripture that says Believers are not to be burned or “cremated,” we are to walk in the steps of the faith of Abraham our spiritual Father. (Romans 4:12)  Abraham was buried, not cremated, and he left very specific instructions for all of his family to be buried.  Jesus Himself followed Abraham’s example. (Matthew 27:57-60)  Therefore, we must now follow their example. (Galatians 3:29)

So there you have the short answer.  Short because there are just about one hundred Scriptural references to God’s servants/family/sons/daughters being buried and never cremated.  I believe that’s a pretty good precedent to follow.  There are only a handful of examples of bodies being burned upon death and ONLY when those individuals were under a curse or involved in occult practices.

However, I always point out to people that we do not have two or three confirming New Testament Scriptures SPECIFICALLY telling us what to do in the matter of burial versus cremation, as we do with so many other things pertaining to life and conduct.  Moses, Jesus and the Apostle Paul said we must have these witnesses before building a doctrine. (Deuteronomy 17:6; Matthew 18:16; 1Corinthians 13:1)  However, we do have EXAMPLES to follow, from Able to Jesus and everyone in between.  That, quite frankly, is good enough for me and should be good enough for anyone who wants to both know and to do the Bible thing.

So there you go.  Hope this helped a little.  Again, I point these things out to people when they ask about cremation and then I tell them they must follow their own conscience and the leading of the Holy Spirit from there.  If they have cremated someone, wishing later they hadn’t done so, I encourage them to just receive God’s forgiveness and mercy and to know that He can and will even raise up ashes into a perfect human being when He returns. God knows where everyone’s DNA is! (1John 1:9; John 5:28-29)

However, God’s mercy is no reason to go with cremation if your conscience or the Inner Witness of the Holy Spirit is telling you not to do so.  JHM

I was watching Fox news and I wondered, “Why do all those women wear dresses?” What I discovered is that by wearing dresses, it is like a death blow to the left and the feminist movement.

Hadley Freeman, of The Guardian, wrote about the news women on Fox News, “The uniformity of this style suggests a political statement which, indeed, it is. Theirs is a look that defiantly embraces the most conservative notions of femininity and firmly rejects any idea of modernity, let alone feminism.”

Wow! They want their women to dress so that they look feminine. I must agree their dresses are short and form fitting…but the network wants the world to know that there is a difference in dress between the right and left.

Years ago when Gloria Steinem, the feminist activist, voiced her opinion…women are just as important as men…be the woman who wears the pants in your family. She was basically saying, “You don’t have to be submissive to any man in your life.”  What she implied was a typical slam against wearing feminine clothing and looking feminine. Think about the left…look at Hillary….she is never seen wearing a dress. She always wears a pantsuit…no matter what interview or what audience she speaks.

God gives us a simple and clear advice about how we as Christian women should dress. I Timothy 2:9: “In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel…” The word “modest” is defined in Collin’s English Dictionary:

Having or expressing a humble opinion of oneself or one’s accomplishments or abilities; not pretentious;  not extreme or excessive, moderate

I believe that a woman’s clothing should be suitable for different situations. For example, we should want to wear a respectable swimsuit for the pool or beach, to wear jeans to work in the garden, and to wear a proper outfit to church, to weddings, or to funerals.

The Bible’s greatest prophecies are being fulfilled.  God instructed the nation of ancient Israel in Deuteronomy 22:5 as follows: “The woman shall not wear that which pertains unto a man, neither shall a man put on a woman’s garment: for all that do so are abomination unto the LORD your God.” Clearly, God is referring to a woman dressing to look like a man or a man dressing to look like a woman.  My how things have changed since that was Scripture was written…a section of our society wants to break down all distinctions between male and female. (masculine and feminine)  Lawmakers are in the process of making laws to make women’s bathrooms neutral.  In some states, men are already allowed to use the same  bathrooms as the women.

As Christian women, we must learn to find a balance between today’s style and tradition…between looking masculine and looking feminine. Whatever we wear, we must wear clothes that reflect Christ’s light into this lost and dying world. We should want to present a good testimony and show others that we have a heart that wants to please the Lord.

Missionary Story

Back in 1921, a missionary couple named David and Svea Flood went with their two-year-old son from Sweden to the heart of Africa-to what was then called the Belgian Congo. They met up with another young Scandinavian couple, the Ericksons, and the four of them sought God for direction. In those days of much tenderness and devotion and sacrifice, they felt led of the Lord to go out from the main mission station and take the gospel to a remote area.

This was a huge step of faith. At the village of N’dolera they were rebuffedby the chief, who would not let them enter his town for fear of alienating the local gods. The two couples opted to go half a mile up the slope and build their own mud huts.

They prayed for a spiritual breakthrough, but there was none. The only contact with the villagers was a young boy, who was allowed to sell them chickens and eggs twice a week. Svea Flood-a tiny woman of only four feet, eight inches tall-decided that if this was the only African she could talk to, she would try to lead the boy to Jesus. And in fact, she succeeded. But there were no other encouragements. Meanwhile, malaria continued to strike one member of the little band after another. In time the Ericksons decided they had had enough suffering and left to return to the central mission station. David and Svea Flood remained near N’dolera to go on alone.

Then, of all things, Svea found herself pregnant in the middle of the primitive wilderness. When the time came for her to give birth, the village chief softened enough to allow a midwife to help her. A little girl was born, whom they named Aina. The delivery, however, was exhausting, and Svea Flood was already weak from bouts of malaria. The birth process was a heavy blow to her stamina. She lasted only another seventeen days.

Inside David Flood, something snapped in that moment. He dug a crude grave, buried his twenty-seven-year-old wife, and then took his children back down the mountain to the mission station. Giving his newborn daughter to the Ericksons, he snarled, “I’m going back to Sweden. I’ve lost my wife, and I obviously can’t take care of this baby. God has ruined my life.” With that, he headed for the port, rejecting not only his calling, but God himself.

Within eight months both the Ericksons were stricken with a mysterious malady and died within days of each other. The baby was then turned over to some American missionaries, who adjusted her Swedish name to “Aggie” and eventually brought her back to the United States at age three. This family loved the little girl and was afraid that if they tried to return to Africa, some legal obstacle might separate her from them. So they decided to stay in their home country and switch from missionary work to pastoral ministry. And that is how Aggie grew up in South Dakota. As a young woman, she attended North Central Bible College in Minneapolis. There she met and married a young man named Dewey Hurst.

Years passed and the Hursts enjoyed a fruitful ministry. Aggie gave birth first to a daughter, then a son. In time her husband became president of a Christian college in the Seattle area, and Aggie was intrigued to find so much Scandinavian heritage there.

One day a Swedish religious magazine appeared in her mailbox. She had no idea who had sent it, and of course she couldn’t read the words. But as she turned the pages, all of a sudden a photo stopped her cold. There in a primitive setting was a grave with a white cross-and on the cross were the words SVEA FLOOD.

Aggie jumped in her car and went straight to a college faculty member who, she knew, could translate the article. “What does this say?” she demanded. The instructor summarized the story: It was about missionaries who had come to N’dolera long ago…the birth of a white baby… the death of the young mother…the one little African boy who had been led to Christ…and how, after the whites had all left, the boy had grown up and finally persuaded the chief to let him build a school in the village. The article said that gradually he won all his students to Christ…the children led their parents to Christ…even the chief had become a Christian. Today there were six hundred Christian believers in that one village… All because of the sacrifice of David and Svea Flood.

For the Hursts’ twenty-fifth wedding anniversary, the college presented them with the gift of a vacation to Sweden. There Aggie sought to find her real father. An old man now, David Flood had remarried, fathered four more children, and generally dissipated his life with alcohol. He had recently suffered a stroke. Still bitter, he had one rule in his family: “Never mention the name of God-because God took everything from me.”

After an emotional reunion with her half brothers and half sister, Aggie brought up the subject of seeing her father. The others hesitated. “You can talk to him,” they replied, “even though he’s very ill now. But you need to know that whenever he hears the name of God, he flies into a rage.”

Aggie was not to be deterred. She walked into the squalid apartment, with liquor bottles everywhere, and approached the seventy-three-year-old man lying in a rumpled bed.
“Papa?” she said tentatively. He turned and began to cry. “Aina,” he said, “I never meant to give you away.”

“It’s all right Papa,” she replied, taking him gently in her arms. “God took care of me.”

The man instantly stiffened. The tears stopped. God forgot all of us. Our lives have been like this because of Him.” He turned his face back to the wall. Aggie stroked his face and then continued, undaunted. “Papa, I’ve got a little story to tell you, and it’s a true one. You didn’t go to Africa in vain. Mama didn’t die in vain. The little boy you won to the Lord grew up to win that whole village to Jesus Christ. The one seed you planted just kept growing and growing. Today there are six hundred African people serving the Lord because you were faithful to the call of God in your life… “Papa, Jesus loves you. He has never hated you.”

The old man turned back to look into his daughter’s eyes. His body relaxed. He began to talk. And by the end of the afternoon, he had come back to the God he had resented for so many decades. Over the next few days, father and daughter enjoyed warm moments together.

Aggie and her husband soon had to return to America-and within a few weeks, David Flood had gone into eternity.

A few years later, the Hursts were attending a high-level evangelism conference in London, England, where a report was given from the nation of Zaire (the former Belgian Congo). The superintendent of the national church, representing some 110,000 baptized believers, spoke eloquently of the gospel’s spread in his nation. Aggie could not help going to ask him afterward if he had ever heard of David and Svea Flood.

“Yes, madam,” the man replied in French, his words then being translated into English. “It was Svea Flood who led me to Jesus Christ. I was the boy who brought food to your parents before you were born. In fact, to this day your mother’s grave and her memory are honored by all of us.” He embraced her in a long, sobbing hug. Then he continued, “You must come to Africa to see, because your mother is the most famous person in our history.”

In time that is exactly what Aggie Hurst and her husband did. They were welcomed by cheering throngs of villagers. She even met the man who had been hired by her father many years before to carry her back down the mountain in a hammock-cradle.

The most dramatic moment, of course, was when the pastor escorted Aggie to see her mother’s white cross for herself. She knelt in the soil to pray and give thanks. Later that day, in the church, the pastor read from John 12:24:Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit. He then followed with Psalm 126:5: They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.

(An excerpt from Aggie Hurst, Aggie: The Inspiring Story of A Girl Without A Country [Springfield, MO: Gospel Publishing House, 1986].) Permissions: Feel free to reproduce and distribute any articles written by Randy Alcorn, in part or in whole, in any format, provided that you do not alter the wording in any way or charge a fee beyond the cost of reproduction. It is our desire to spread this information, not protect or restrict it.

What Is Faith?

If someone asked you this morning, “What is faith?” How would you answer that question?

The root word of ‘faith’ is PISTIS. That word is a noun.

FAITH – PISTIS means faith, belief, firm persuasion, assurance, firm conviction, faithfulness.

The root word of ‘believe’ is PISTUEO. That word is a verb.

BELIEVE – PISTUEO – to trust in and rely upon, commit to the charge of, confide in, have a mental persuasion.

What a great thought that my faith is the act whereby I lay hold of God’s resources, and I become obedient to what He has prescribed for me. I put aside all my self interest and self-reliance, and trust Him completely. It is an absolute surrender of the whole of my being and a complete dependence upon Him. It is wholly trusting and relying upon Him for all things. It is not just a mental assent to the facts and realities of His Word, but it is a deep inner commitment to the convictions which have come to me through His Word. By faith,  I have a firm conviction that I can fully commit my life to God’s charge and be assured that He knows what is best for me.

Failure Isn’t Final

Sometimes it is hard to build our days on pleasant thoughts when we feel like we are a failure. Satan is always trying to make us focus on our weaknesses and failures.  We must constantly remind ourselves that we are God’s creatures and thank Him for the way He has made us. We are valuable to Him, and He wants us to live abundant lives. At those times in our lives when we begin to have thoughts of being  failures, we must not allow our minds to dwell on our imperfections and begin to look at our failures as life’s way of teaching us.

No one is perfect! Once we begin to accept our failures and surrender them to the Lord, He will release us from our bondage of trying to be perfect in all things and will use those failures to draw us closer to Him.

I was sitting here tonight listening to the song on You Tube Failure Isn’t Final sung by LuLu Roman. I really didn’t know much about her life, but I just came across a bio written about her.

LuLu has enjoyed many successes in her life, but also more than her share of disappointments and hardships. Famous for her side-splitting humor and jovial disposition, a lesser-known story lies behind those clear, radiant eyes, which have often been filled with tears of both pain and joy.

People know LuLu as the most requested female cast member of the long running hit television series, “Hee Haw”. Many know her as the accomplished and celebrated songwriter; and as the singer who has been successfully making records for over 25 years.

Few know that Lulu was born with a thyroid dysfunction in a home for unwed mothers and was soon placed in an orphanage. It was there that her weight problem furthered her pain, preventing her adoption and making her the center of teasing by the other children. It was also during this time that LuLu learned to use her sense of humor as a defense.

That sense of humor later evolved into a highly successful career as an actress and comedienne with a lead role on “Hee Haw.” Success and wealth, however proved poisonous to the actress who began her career in her early twenties. Drug addiction led LuLu on a downward spiral that nearly destroyed her life and her career in 1971.

LuLu’s search for happiness and acceptance, which had almost led her to her personal destruction, instead led her to God. It was her new found faith in God that led her to begin using a talent that had been laying dormant for many years: her voice.

Listen to her sing the song that she wrote Failure Isn’t Final on You Tube.

2017 GIBM Letters

Honduras: Jason and Arlen Stevens
February 2017

Hello from the country of Honduras. This is our first letter of the New Year, so I would like to share with you allwhat the Lord has been doing. In January of this year we got our men’s meeting started again. This is a meeting that we have the last Saturday of each month, and it is not just for the men of our two churches, but also for the men of the other Independent Baptist Churches of La Esperanza and the surrounding communities. This meeting was started a number of years ago when the Lord burdened the heart of Missionary Mike Lane about the need for such a meeting. When Brother Lane went home to be with the Lord in August 2015, the meeting did not continue for some time. But then the Lord burdened my heart and the heart of another pastor about how vitally important this monthly meeting is to the spiritual health of our Independent Baptist Churches. So we had the first meeting in January of this year at our church in Quebrada de Lajas, and we had more than sixty adult men and teenage boys in attendance representing six different churches. I was thankful for the opportunity to preach at this special meeting, as I honestly believe that the true spiritual condition and impact of our Independent Baptist Churches in Honduras, and everywhere in the world, is dependent upon the men in our churches more than any other single factor. Please pray that the Lord will use these meetings to strengthen the men who are saved and members of the different Independent Baptist Churches here, while also becoming a means to see many more men get saved by way of the preaching of the word of God. Lord willing, we will be having our April meeting in our church in the community of Rodeo. The Lord has been blessing our soul-winning/visitation efforts in the communities of Quebrada de Lajas and in Rodeo. The wife of my assistant Brother Noel (Sonia) led her neighbor Ivis to the Lord a couple of months ago. We have seen spiritual fruit in her life already, as she is faithful to all of the services, and she is also showing a desire to be involved in weekly evangelizing with the church. Keep her in prayer, as her husband Eloi has been very unsupportive of her faith in Christ, and I know that this has been a great burden on her heart.We also have a new young teenage girl attending our services. My wife has been talking to her about salvation, so please pray for this young girl named Rogeli. She brought her whole family with her recently to our Father’s Day service.

In addition to those things, we are also rejoicing in the following.

We started Wednesday evening discipleship classes this year focusing exclusively on the Gospel: what it is, and how to proclaim it Biblically. My wife is teaching the ladies, and I am teaching the men. The Lord is using these classes to raise the awareness in our people about their responsibility to faithfully proclaim God’s word to the lost in their community.

The Lord brought a woman to one of our Sunday morning services in February, and when she came back for the evening service she made a profession of faith in Christ. Sadly, she had to move out of her home in March to another part of Honduras. But it was encouraging to our people to see the Lord bring someone to our church who we had not first visited. I told our people that God blesses soul-winning in ways that we often don’t envision.

So I would ask for prayer for us as we continue to go and preach the Gospel in the communities of Quebrada de Lajas and Rodeo. People often ask me the difference between soul-winning in Honduras compared to soul-winning in the United States. Let me answer that in two ways. The positive: People here are much more willing to let you talk to them about Christ. I have not once had someone slam their door in my face here like I had happen many times in Philadelphia. If you are prepared and know how to give the Gospel here, then trust me, you will have many opportunities to plant the seed of God’s word in the hearts of the people, and even go back and water that seed yourself.

The negative: When I say “the negative”, I don’t mean so from my perspective, but no doubt it will be negative from the perspective of many Christians, perhaps even some who will read this letter. The people here for the most part are not quick to make a profession of faith in Christ. They instinctively seem to understand that being born-again to become a disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ is a very serious matter (see: Mark 8:34-38,) and (Luke 14:25-33). So that may or may not bring great frustration to the American missionary depending on his position on the Gospel, and how he proclaims it. The challenge on my end is in remembering that I am not called to do the work of the Holy Spirit, while at the same time I am not to let people think that it is OK for them to spend weeks and months counting the cost to trust Christ as their Lord and Saviour, especially when tomorrow is not promised to anyone (Proverbs 27:1), and also the Lord never encourages delay in such an important matter like salvation (2 Corinthians 6:2).

So basically, we believe the value of one soul is precious to the Lord (Luke 15:7) (as I am sure many of you do as well,) and for that reason we stay away from trying to force or manipulate people into the kingdom of God. That may result in the prayer letters being less glamorous, but if the Lord counts us as faithful, then that is ultimately what matters most to us.

We greatly appreciate your prayers, encouragement, and faithful monthly support that allows us to fulfill the Lord’s calling on our lives here in Honduras. May the Lord bless you all as you continue to serve Him. Lord willing, our next letter will be for March/April 2017, and you should receive it sometime in May.

Because Christ is Risen (I Cor. 15: 19-20)
Jason, Arlen, Micaiah, Jerimiah, and Mary Ellen Stevens

Thailand: Bryan and Angel Ries
February 2017

Hello Churches and Prayer Partners,

Prayer Push to 50%

This week, I’m launching what I’m calling a “Prayer Push” to get to 50% of our needed support by Easter. We would be ecstatic to arrive at the 50% mark of our support and deputation ministry. In order to meet that goal, 16 new churches will need to partner together with us in the next 8 weeks. Would you add this matter to your daily prayer list and begin praying with us? If we’ve been to your church and shared our burden for souls in Thailand, would you prayerfully consider being 1 of those 16 new churches?

This Past Month

Over that past month, we’ve been privileged to travel around 4,100 miles to present our burden for Thailand in churches in Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky and Illinois. God has raised up new Great Commission partnerships with local churches which has raised our support level to 34%. We’re grateful for God’s churches and His provision!

In our family, we’ve had a lot to celebrate this past month. Angel and I celebrated our 15th wedding anniversary on January 5th, Alex had his 4th birthday on January 28th, I celebrated 20 years of salvation on February 2nd and Anna had her 6th birthday on February 11th. God has been so good to us! I posted a video on Facebook where I went to the place that I got saved and shared my testimony. You can watch it at https://goo.gl/FWXWkm.

This Coming Month

This month, we took off from our home base in Indiana for our first real road trip of the year. We are going to be in several meetings and conferences all over the place. We’ll be in GA, NC, FL, TX, KS, and NE! It will be a long trip with a lot of driving, so pray that God would bless it with safety and fruitful ministry!

We’re incredibly grateful for you!

By His Grace,
Bryan and Angel Ries
Andrew, Aaron, Abigail, Anna and Alexander
ThaiLight.org

Contact us:
1458 Scarlet Court
Franklin, IN 46131
812-764-0618
Send support to:
GIBM
602 Manco Road
Lewisville, TX 75067

Scotland: Russell & Janet Brinkley
January 2017

Dear Pastor & Praying Friends, Dec – Jan 2017

Christmas Outreach

We had 17 in our choir for “Carols on the High Street”. It was a chilly December day, but it remained dry so it allowed the choir to sing for two hours during the busy holiday weekend.

The children passed out candy canes with gospel tracts and we had opportunity to speak to many people. We also had a good turnout for the Christmas morning service and our family enjoyed an evening together in celebration of the birth of Christ and all He’s done for us personally. God has blessed us!

Good Start To 2017

We are happy to announce that we are one step closer to receiving British Citizenship! Our family has been granted “Indefinite Leave to Remain” (also called Permanent Residence) which means we have permission to live and work in the UK without Visa’s or restrictions. We are on the pathway to British Citizenship and will be eligible to apply in one year. We praise the Lord for helping us reach this milestone and we thank all of you who gave financially to make this possible for our family. We are just so very grateful!

Growing Youth Club

We’ve had an explosion of kids coming to our Thursday Night Bible Club. We average 16 each week and have made great connections with the parents too. Single missionary, Deana Hewston, runs the club with us. She does an outstanding job of teaching the Bible, directing the youth choir, teaching music theory, and sharing Christian biographies. The excitement of this growing ministry has proven to be contagious and we are having a new visitor in club nearly every week! God is at work!

 Serving together,

Russell, Janet, Taylor, Dylan & Danielle Brinkley

 

Philippines: Chris & Victoria Hunter
February 2017

Dearest Prayer Warriors,Greetings to you in the precious name of our LORD and Saviour JESUS CHRIST.

Our family is in the middle of preparing to go back to the US for furlough. Our flight is scheduled on January 30TH, 2017. Thank you for your help prayerfully and financially. We are excited and looking forward to give a full report of how God is growing HIS ministry here in the Philippines.

By the grace of GOD, our family will be in Texas during the months of March – April. If we need to stay longer we will. Please send me an email if you would like to have our family come and visit your church and the open dates when you are able to have us come. We are currently scheduled to be with Pastor Dale Webster, BBC Bridgeport TX, on March 22-26.  We are also scheduled to be with Pastor Harold Wells, Landmark Baptist Church Red Oak TX, on March 29TH, 2017. Our calendar is still wide open for scheduling. We are ready for hard work and more than willing to travel anywhere in the US.

Please pray for our safety as we begin our journey from the Philippines to the US. My youngest daughter Cherish will be traveling to the US for the very first time. Please help us pray for a family van to use while we are in the US for our furlough needs. We are in need of something that will not break down on us while we are travelling across the US. Also, if you have a place that our family can stay in while we travel in your state please let us know. Any assistance would be a HUGE help for our family of five. We praise GOD for your constant, consistent prayers and support for our family. We would not have been able to accomplish what have been able to accomplish without your love and help. We thank GOD for you. GOD BLESS YOU.

IN CHRIST JESUS,

The Hunter Family

Philippines: Lemuel & Taylor Javier
February 2017

Dear Pastor and Praying Friends,

I thank the Lord for the time that we get to spend time here. The Lord exactly knows what He is doing. Tuesday we are heading to Dallas to be dropped off by our Pastor and our family. Wednesday morning we are flying out to Manila. Our time here in the states has been fruitful and well spent. We are grateful for the time and memories that my family and I have experienced.

In January we finally received Gilberts Philippine passport. We now have everything we need for Gilberts paperwork. His name has already been legalized for both countries and his passport for USA is here as well. Taylors visa has also finally been approved! It arrived two weeks ago. The third try was definitely the charm. It went so much smoother once we had everything in hand. We could not have accomplished all of these things without all your faithful prayers and financial supports. Thank you for your continued prayers for the visa’s and passports. They have all been answered

Now, we prepare to make the journey back home to Palawan. As you may expect we are excited to get back and be with the church family at Christ Baptist Church. It is exciting to go forward knowing that God has a plan. We don’t know what this year will hold but God does. This coming summer we have youth camps. Camp is always a very exciting time for me. I have such a burden for the young people there in the island. It is such a blessing and joy to be part of the camp week in counseling, teaching, and preaching to the teenagers who are always so eager for Gods word and work in their lives. I will be starting a discipleship program to help the church to grow in the Lord. The plan is to go through the ABC of Christian growth until its finished. I plan to have it every Friday night. Again, thank you so much for your faithfulness!! Looking forward to see what God in store for us when we get back to the field.

In Christ,

Taylor and Lemuel Javier

Soul Winning Seminars:
Bob & Joy Martin
February 2017

Dear Friends,

Praise the Lord for the folks that marched in Washington to support ending the murder of babies in the womb even though largely ignored by the liberal media. Ever since Cain, this world has sought to explain away, or rationalize, murder. But murder is still murder; whether it be the murder of a brother, or the murder of a defenseless baby by calling it “abortion”. Sin will always be rationalized away by changing the title of it, at least until the heart of the sinner is changed. That’s the work of the Child of God; presenting the Gospel, because “it is the power of God unto salvation” to give the Holy Spirit pportunity to change the heart. That’s the first work of every Child of God and every Baptist church. So, let’s be about the work to which God has called us.

February is Almost Empty!

We only have two dates filled on our calendar for February:
February 20-23 is the GIBF National Conference at Calvary Baptist Church in Temecula, CA
February 27-28 is the national BEAMS Conference at Faith Baptist Church in Gulfport, MS

We would love to visit your church. We have a Sunday School Seminar that takes 45 minutes and would give the pastor and the church a good understand- ing of the regular Seminar. Or, we could simply present the witnessing ministry (talk or video). We are fully supported, only seeking to be a help to the Lord’s pastors and people.

January was Good!

January 1st we visited Pocahontas Baptist Church in Pocahontas, Arkansas. Bro. Delbert McLaughlin is the pastor of this country church, just south of the town of Pocahontas, “smack dab” in the middle of the rice fields of Arkansas. He and his wife Darlene have been at the church several years, serving the Lord after returning from the mission field of Romania. This is a precious pastor and people. We spent the rest of the day with our family. Our son-in-law Sam is a Master Chief in the Navy and was home for a couple of days. We just did what family does when they get together at those special times; watching our grandson help our great grandson doing chin-ups.

January 8th we were supposed to be in Georgia in two churches, and attend the GA/ALA Independent Baptist Preachers Fellowship on Monday. On Tuesday we were scheduled to attend the Southeast Independent Baptist Spanish Pastors Fellowship in Atlanta, Georgia, but an ice/snow storm spread across the country & did not allow us to travel that weekend.

January 15th I preached at Lighthouse Baptist Church in Folsom, Louisiana for the AM service. Bro. Frank Palmisano is the pastor of Lighthouse Baptist church. Bro. Frank and I have known each other for over 30 years (since before he began pastoring). The Lord saved the lady in the right-hand picture during the invitation. For the PM Service we attended Fundamental Baptist Church in Livingston, Louisiana where Bro. Rusty Silvertooth is the pastor. This is one of the great witnessing Baptist churches in south Louisiana. The music program was phenomenal, and the youth and children’s choir sang that evening. We also had the privilege of meeting missionaries John and Sharon Sutton who have a ministry to trade shows and fairs, singing and giving away Bibles and toys where God lets them travel. They are another couple who retired and went to work for God, serving Him all over the United States.

January 22nd we traveled to Mineral Heights Baptist Church in Greenville, Texas for the AM service. The church is in the process of finding a new pastor while doing the work God has called them to. I had the opportunity to present our work and challenge them to continue to be witnesses for the Lord. Please pray for this church as they seek God’s will for a pastor.

I preached at 1st Baptist Church Haltom City in Fort Worth, Texas during the PM Service. Bro. C. M. Mosely is the pastor of this great church. We had visited 1st Baptist in December, and had the privilege of returning and preaching in January. The Holy Spirit dealt with hearts and filled the altar as many folks resolved to be better witnesses.

January 29th we were at our home church, Southside Baptist Church in Vicksburg, Mississippi. The Lord has blessed us with the joy and privilege of the friendship of Bro. Jamie and Sis. Donna Hilley from Stone Mountain, Georgia. Bro. Jamie is an evangelist, working specifically with tent revivals. He stayed in our home and preached both services at church. Sis. Donna could not travel because of back problems. Our pastor and church are already considering a tent revival in the future.

Most Often Asked Questions:

  1. Do you charge for the Seminars? No we do not. All we ask is for a place to rest and a love offering. We provide all the Seminar materials (from 1 person to 500 people) and will provide our own place to rest if needed.
  2. Are you a Calvinist or Hyper Calvinist? A thousand times NO!
  3. Why do you and Sis Joy visit churches without doing a Seminar? Because many Pastors do not know us from Adam and Eve’s house cat. When pastoring, I would never let a preacher I did not know preach in my pulpit, why should any pastor allow us to do a Seminar or preach, until he has met us and knows us?
  4. Why are you an Independent Baptist preacher? Because I discern that we are the closest to the Bible in belief and practice.

Got a Question? Text me at 601/618-4191 or e-mail me at bobjoymartin@earthlink.net.

Korea: Benjamin & Jae Park
February 2017

Dear Pastors and Friends.

Bro. Yoon, A New Addition to Sejong BBC.Brother Sungkyu Yoon is a senior student at our Bible College in Seoul and joined Sejong BBC in Sep. of 2016. He is a good Christian young man brought up in a godly home. He will help Pastor Min in Sunday School and Youth work. I am praying that he would be trained well and equipped for the furtherance of the Gospel in Korea. Please pray for us so that we would be used for many young people trained for the future ministry of the Lord in this nation.

Baptism of Jingu Im. He is the husband of my cousin and it’s been a couple of years since he accepted the Lord, but his job situation did not allow him to be baptized sooner. He was baptized last month at Pastor Min’s apartment. It was a blessing to see him obey the believer’s scriptural baptism and grow in the knowledge of the Lord.

Sweet Blessings in the Chinese Church.

Mrs. Kim, who is a member of Sejong BBC and helping our Chinese work,  does not speak Chinese well but she has great zeal for winning Chinese people to the Lord. She has a booklet that guides the way of salvation in Chinese. She used it with her broken Chinese, and led Whang Gui Hong to the Lord. Mrs. Whang shed tears when she prayed and accepted the Lord in her heart. It was a happy time for us all.

It is also a blessing to see these young Chinese Christians begin to read the Bible. It has been a forbidden book in China for many years even though they can possess one nowadays. It is a wonderful blessing to see that some show their interest in the Bible and read it when others are resting. Please continue to pray for our Chinese work so that souls would be saved consistently and they would grow in the Word of God.

On the Road again.

I am leaving Korea for the States on the 17th of this month. We are finishing our 1st term as missionaries in Korea. I will attend the GIBF meeting in Temecula, CA this month. Jae will join me in CA on the 7th of March. She wants to stay 3 more weeks in Korea due to Mrs. Liu’s delivery of a baby girl. Mengmeng was born on the 30th of Jan., 2017 to Brother and Mrs. Liu’s home. Mrs. Liu needs some time to recover before she takes over what Jae has been doing in the Chinese Church.

Please pray for our trip to the States and traveling to visit our supporting churches to give ministry reports. I also need to raise more support for the Chinese ministry. If you want to have and use us for your missions project please call me to (253) 227-7114 or email me to bpbbct@yahoo.com and let me know.

Thank you again for your love, prayers and faithful supports for all these years. Without you, we would never have been here and seen what the Lord has done here in Korea. So, we thank and praise the Lord for each of you. May the Lord richly bless you for your love and sacrifice for the World Missions!

Gratefully in His Service,

Brother Benjamin Heewon Park

Important Communication Guidelines


  1. Be a good listener. Do not answer a person before he has stopped talking. Proverbs 18:13 He that answereth a matter before he heareth it, it is folly and shame unto him.
  2. Think before you speak. Proverbs 15:23 A man hath joy by the answer of his mouth: and a word spoken in due season, how good is it!
  3. Do not use silence on a person to show your anger or frustration with him. Explain the reason that you are angry or frustrated. Colossians 4:6 Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.
  4. Do not become involved in quarrels. Proverbs 20:3 It is an honour for a man to cease from strife: but every fool will be meddling.
  5. Do not respond in uncontrolled anger. Proverbs 15:1 A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.
  6. When you are wrong, admit your offence and ask forgiveness. Proverbs 20:6 Most men will proclaim every one his own goodness: but a faithful man who can find?
  7. When you do forgive someone, never bring the offence up to him again. Genuine forgiveness means: I won’t bring it up to the person again-I won’t bring it up to anyone else-I won’t let my mind brood on it. Colossians 3:13 Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do
  8. If someone verbally attacks, criticizes, or blames you, do not respond same way. Romans 12:21 Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.
  9. Try to understand the other person’s opinion. 1 Peter 3:9 Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing.
  10. Do not blame or criticize the other person. Try to encourage and edify. Galatians 6:1 Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted.
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