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Bethesda Shalom

Bethesda Shalom , "House of Mercy and Peace". A small independent Bible believing Church located in Wolverhampton, England; endeavouring to hold fast to truth and stand fast in love by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.
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Feb 21, 2021

John 2:13-17

The question being asked in this sermon is a question that every Christian must answer honestly before God; Where lies the treasure of your heart?  In just three words, our Lord would have us remember; “Remember Lot’s wife” (Lk. 17:32).  Her heart was still at home in Sodom, and though her feet were going through the motions of exiting the confines of that wicked city, she brought Sodom out with her!  Let me ask you, do you feel at home in this world or are you just passing through?

This sermon is a call for a people to rise up in this day of great evil, wherein it appears, the glory of God is departing from these shores. Is there a soul who of whom it could be said; the zeal of thine house hath eaten me up?  Who will give themselves to the Father’s business in order that we might see the Kingdom of God advancing in our day? Even so, Lord may it be!

Feb 15, 2021

Revelation 3:7-8

Here before us in the third chapter of the Book of Revelation, is a Church, to whom our Lord had nothing by way of rebuke to bring.  That was of course, not the case for the vast majority of the Churches that He addressed in Revelation chapters 2 and 3.  In my reckoning, there were only two out of the seven Churches addressed, for which our Lord had nothing bad to say and both these Churches shared something precious in common that I believe was key in contributing to this.  You say, Brother, what was it?  Both found themselves in the midst of persecution and tribulation, amidst great difficulty and affliction for representing the name of Jesus Christ.  Both were WEAK in their own natural strength. Whatever we may think of persecution, and whatever discomfort we may feel at the thought of having to go through afflictions and trials —one thing is for sure...IT DOES US GOOD!! 

Maybe you’re going through a particular trial of incredible difficulty and you feel as though you can’t go on.  Be encouraged dear soul, the God we serve is the God of the little strength Christian.  There is grace in abundance to help you through if you will but call upon the Lord.

Feb 13, 2021

Knowing the Bible for Yourself (Pt. 9)

The last two decades have seen a steady stream of teaching into the Christian Church with a major emphasis on the need for the return to the Jewish roots of the Christian faith.  The argument goes as follows:  the first Church was Jewish in culture and practice and so what went wrong?  What went wrong (they’ll say) is that the Church veered from its Hebrew roots and allowed the influence of Greek philosophy to Hellenise a faith that was once deeply Jewish and what we have been left with a paganised Christianity that is need of desperate reformation!  Thus, the general consensus of those belonging to the Hebrew Roots Movement will be an insistence on a return back to Torah observance as a way of life, since this was (they’ll argue) the life that Jesus, the disciples, and the early Church practiced.  This includes Sabbath observance (Friday sunset to Saturday sunset), abstaining from the consumption of unclean animals (pork, prawns, etc.), observance of the Jewish Feasts, and in some cases, even the practice of male circumcision!  The long and short of it (no matter how it may be dressed up) is this; unless you keep the Law of Moses, you cannot be truly saved!

In this teaching, we endeavour to understand what the Torah (the Law) is and in so doing, offer some help on how to interpret it and bring the proper application in light of the New Covenant.  This will then lead us to answer the crucial question; are we obliged as New Testament believers, to keep the Law of Moses?   

Download teaching notes (pdf)

https://traffic.libsyn.com/secure/bethesdashalom/6_Interpreting_the_Law.pdf

Feb 8, 2021

1 Corinthians 10:1-14

Exhortation abound in the Word of God, calling believers to stand!  “Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong” (1 Cor. 16:13).  “Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage” (Gal. 5:1).  “…my brethren dearly beloved and longed for, my joy and crown, so stand fast in the Lord…” (Phil. 4:1), and so we could go on!

In this sermon, a great warning is given for the believers to stand guard against a mind inflated with pride.  By looking at the example of Israel’s disobedience and the subsequent judgment that came as a result of this, the believer in Christ I warned so as not to follow suit.  May the Lord speak to each one of us.

Feb 1, 2021

Matthew 4:1-11

The saying goes; “Better the devil you know than the devil you don’t”, and to this, the Word of God agrees. What saith the Apostle Paul when instructing the Corinthian Church to forgive a brother who had once been caught in a grievous sin but had now been brought to true repentance and remorse over the same?  “Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices” (2 Cor. 2:11).  Ah, such a statement presupposes many things.  In the first, it presupposes that there is such a being as Satan, and in the second, it presupposes the possibility that Satan can gain an advantage over us, though we name the name of Jesus Christ!  Brothers and Sisters, there’s no two ways about it, we must be on guard and stand ready to overcome in the day of Satan’s special assault.

In this sermon, we take a look at the temptation of Jesus in the wilderness, and in so doing, we learn valuable lessons that serve as aids to help us to overcome when we too shall be tempted by the devil.    

Jan 25, 2021

Isaiah 36

David brings a very timely word to the Body of Christ that draws from the godly life of King Hezekiah. When Sennacherib came up against the defenced cities of Judah, taking them captive; he set his face towards Jerusalem and sent a messenger to Hezekiah to strike fear into the armies of Judah. How did Hezekiah respond in such an hour of trial? Where did he turn and in whom did place his trust?

May God speak to our hearts through this word so as to grant us understanding in knowing how to respond in times of trial.

Jan 18, 2021

Isaiah 6:1-9

Brothers and Sisters, I don’t know about you, but I carry in my heart a great burden as I witness first-hand the departing of a generation of Christian workers who in their day troubled the kingdom of darkness and wrought many mighty victories for the kingdom of light!  These were men and women of commitment, sold to the cause of the advancement of the kingdom of God; men and women of sacrifice, men and women of faith and courage, who knew what it was to walk with their Lord.  These were disciplined souls whose personal business mattered less to them than did the business of their Master who they served with wholeness of heart in sincerity, in obedience, and love.  I know that they have gone ahead of us into glory—far better it is for them; but for us who are left behind and more importantly, for the Body of Christ as a whole; their passing is our great loss and we’re far the worse off for not having them still with us!!  Now it ought to be that in the passing of a great soul, rising in their shadows are found others mounting up on eagles’ wings; seeking to build where one left off and to further to the work that they began.  Yet, when I look to see the ones rising up to fill their shoes, I look in vain!

This sermon is a call and a cry, for Christian men and women to purpose in their hearts to give themselves wholly unto the Lord so as to live for Him in absolute devotion!  When we do this, then I believe that we will witness again the sending forth of labourers in our day.  Who will give themselves to the Master?  Is there one?   

Jan 15, 2021

Knowing the Bible for Yourself (Pt. 8)

It seems an absurd question to ask, how one should read historical narrative since we do it intuitively all the time.  In picking up a biography to read or a story in the newspaper, we are naturally handling material that would rightly be defined as historical narrative and yet we do it effortlessly without thinking.  We pay close attention to the facts and the details - the dates and names, the places and characters.  We all know the difference between facts and fiction and handle both accordingly.  No one for a minute would take a novel like Alice and Wonderland and read it as they would a WW2 journal.  One is fact and one is fiction.  Whilst we can be inspired and entertained by fiction - learning very many valuable lessons - it is still at the end of the day fiction – it’s made-up, it’s not a faithful representation of historical fact but instead concerns itself with imaginary people and imaginary events.  I’m sad to say, there are some, most notably those in liberal circles, who approach the Bible in this way.  God creating the earth in six days!  A global flood!  Noah and the Ark!  Jonah and a great fish!  Virgin birth!  Resurrection from the dead!  Miracles and healings!  Far from being taken as fact, at best these are embellishments to enhance the narrative and at worst fanciful stories (myths and legends) made up by the imaginations of men.

In this teaching, we look at the historicity of the Bible.  Rather than giving a definitive how-to, we seek to give some cautionary pointers in approaching the historical narratives contained in the Bible and to clearly set out what these narratives are and are not.    It is my hope that in doing this, it will help guard against the misuse of these passages and set a firm foundation upon which we may learn from the history recorded in the Bible so as to serve the Lord better in our day. 

Download teaching notes (pdf)

https://traffic.libsyn.com/secure/bethesdashalom/5_Interpreting_Historical_Narrative.pdf

Jan 11, 2021

Luke 2:25-35

The great predicament of man, is his pride and rebellion; stubbornness is what keeps Him from serving God—He can have it no other way than his own. Simply put, He refuses to have a God that will meddle with His affairs, and until that man is first broken, he will rise in newness of life.  You know, the Church today has lost sight of the first and only ever presents to man the last.  Come to Christ and see what He will do for you!!  Yet, they do not tell them that entrance into this Kingdom is through a door of brokenness!  “And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder” (Mt. 21:44).  Tell me dear soul, have you known it on this wise?  Do you know what it is to fall on that rock?  May we indeed fall upon that rock that in falling we might rise again in newness of life. 

Jan 4, 2021

Luke 18:1-8

Any true sportsman knows fully well that there’s more to winning than merely turning up!  Turning up is the easy part; it’s the parts that the cheering fans don’t see that differentiates the winners from the losers.  Persistent and relentless discipline; those countless hours spent in training.  When those of their peers were free to do as they please—eating what they will and going where they would—the future champion in the making is not!  Burdened with a fervent passion to succeed, against all odds and at all costs, he pushes his natural man to limits, exacting from his mortal body seeming impossibilities so as to win the prize. 

With the self-same analogy, the Church of Jesus Christ must everywhere be given, not only to prayer but persistent prayer!  If we would see the power of God in our day at work, let us give ourselves to this end and see what the Almighty will do!

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