Category: Seminars

Wisdom

Mark’s Remarks

I had a good week at Yellowstone Bible Camp. It was not a very large camp, which helped to have a more relaxed atmosphere. The lessons from Isaiah were well received and appreciated. I even spent some time in Yellowstone National Park and saw bison, elk, deer, a black bear, a grizzly bear and cub, and seven wolves.

I appreciate Jakie Gibbs and Lorn Benson for preaching and teaching in my absence. I also appreciate Mike Ewing for taking over the online access to the worship assembly.

We are embarking on a short series concerning “desire.” As I delved into the subject, the direction of my study took some turns that I did not expect. Those turns challenged me, and I will share some of them with you. The plan for the desire series is:

July 11          The Realm Of Desire

July 18          The Desires Of God

July 25          Human Desires

The Bible uses several Hebrew and Greek terms to express both good and evil desires. Two Hebrew roots shape the concept of desire in the Old Testament: אוה (ʾwh) generally expresses a neutral or good desire, whereas the numerous terms derived from the root חמד (ḥmd) describes the desirability of an object or person. The Old Testament often deems desire expressed through the root ḥmd as a negative form of desire. In addition, the Old Testament employs other verbs and nouns to specify the nuances of desire in relationships with both humans and God (חָשַׁק [ḥāšaq, “to desire”] and שָׁאַף [šāʾap, “to pant for”]). In the New Testament, the concept of desire is frequently communicated through Greek terms related to the will or wishes of a person or God. The verbs θέλω (thelō, “to will”) and βούλομαι (boulomai, “to wish”) frequently occur regarding the concept of desire. Desire can be morally positive or negative based on the context. The New Testament authors typically employ the verbs ἐπιθυμέω (epithymeō) and ἐπιποθέω (epipotheō) to illustrate the positive aspect of desire. At the same time, the noun ἐπιθυμία (epithymia) often refers to the destructive effect of lustful desires.

The Bible mentions all kinds of desires and longings that are fundamental to human existence. The biblical texts characterize some of these desires as good and thus to be pursued, while others are viewed as sinful and therefore to be avoided or resisted. When uncontrolled, passion can become overwhelmingly excessive or misdirected, turning people away from the Lord and toward selfish and harmful thoughts and actions.

As we think about “desires,” let us adopt the mindset the psalmists communicated in the following texts:

Psalm 40:8 I desire to do your will, O my God; your law is within my heart.

Psalm 73:25 Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you.

Psalm 119:174 I long for your salvation, O LORD, and your law is my delight.

Mark Johnson

Worship Service for March 29

The worship service for Sunday, March 29, 2020 will be at 10:00 AM and available in three ways.
  1. Facebook Live – go the Columbine church of Christ Facebook page at 10:00 AM. I do not have a link to just click (like last week) since the feed is originating with Zoom.
  2. Zoom, see below:
You are invited to a Zoom webinar.
When: Mar 29, 2020 10:00 AM Mountain Time (US and Canada)
Topic: Columbine Worship
Please click the link below to join the webinar:
  1. Phone, see below:
Or iPhone one-tap :
    US: +16699009128,,224730217#  or +13462487799,,224730217#
Or Telephone:
    Dial (for higher quality, dial a number based on your current location):
        US: +1 669 900 9128  or +1 346 248 7799  or +1 646 558 8656  or +1 253 215 8782  or +1 301 715 8592  or +1 312 626 6799
    Webinar ID: 224 730 217
Choose one of the phone numbers and then you will be asked to enter the Webinar ID number followed by the # sign.

Updated Information From The Elders

The current plan for the Columbine church of Christ during the Coronavirus Pandemic (as of 3/20/20):

Due to concerns about the Coronavirus, the elders ask every member to use their own good judgment relative to attending worship at Columbine. We have decided to only meet for worship on Sundays (keep reading). We will discontinue the 9:00 a.m. Bible class and Wednesday night classes until further notice.

We want everyone to be safe during this time. If you know any members who do not have email, we encourage you to let them know about this announcement.

Mark is working on streaming his sermons on line. We’ll keep you updated as progress is made on this so that we, as the Columbine body, can keep some continuity.

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The Columbine elders encourage, praise, and support the following measures:

· Pray to God that He will curtail the impact of the Coronavirus.

· If you are sick or do not feel well, please stay home.

· If you or members of your household are elderly or have any high risk factor, please stay home.

· If you have a conviction about not participating in gatherings during the pandemic, please stay home.

· If you are among those that intend to meet for worship, please select one worship time to attend (10 am or 1 pm) and notify Dave at 720-841-4922 or , indicating the service time you plan to attend. If the number attending one service is excessive, we may ask you to be flexible and attend at the other time.

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Taking communion and the collection will be handled as follows:

(members do not pass trays or baskets)

Servers wash their hands before worship.

Keep every other pew empty.

Servers will pass down the empty pews to serve communion so members do not have to touch the trays or baskets.

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The collection of the saints: The elders recognize that members’ financial situations may be uncertain or severely impacted during this time. However, the church’s expenses continue regardless of whether we meet at the building. The Lord asks us to give cheerfully as we have prospered. If you are able, please mail a check into the church office. Also, we are investigating ways to contribute electronically. Thank you.

Columbine church of Christ

7543 South Zephyr Ct

Littleton, CO 80128

Love God And Neighbor

Most of us are aware that the great command is to “love God” with all one’s heart, soul, and might. We are probably most familiar with this command from Matthew 22:37-38And he said to him, You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment (or one of the parallel accounts – Mark 12:30; Luke 10:27).

We are probably also well aware of this directive to love God with all of one’s being from Deuteronomy 6:5 “You shall love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might.” Are we aware that this precept is given at least five more times in Deuteronomy (Deut. 10:12; 11;1, 13; 13:3; 30:6) and twice in the book of Joshua (Josh. 22:5; 23:11)?

According to Jesus, “And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:39). This command is initially found in God’s covenant with Israel (Leviticus 19:18, you shall love your neighbor as yourself: I am the LORD). It also occurs two more times in Matthew’s Gospel (Mt. 5:43; 19:19), twice in Paul’s writings (Romans 13:9-10; Galatians 5:14) and James 2:8. In other words, loving one’s neighbors is a significant biblical teaching.

As medical and governmental officials call on people to practice “social distancing” and banning various size groups, a primary theological consideration for the people of God is the love of neighbor. Care for others should be determining many of our responses.

This consideration of loving others is changing the way we interact. Thom Rainer wrote this, “Social distancing will change permanently some of the traditions in many churches. Stand and greet is gone and will not return in most churches. Church huggers will no longer be tolerated. Even handshakes will be minimized.” The “holy handshake” being replaced by the “holy wave” or “holy elbow bump.” People may continue to look for more space between them on others in the auditorium even after the crisis is passed (the 200 capacity worship center may reach its social distancing capacity at 120).

We need to practice the things during this time that protect the most susceptible people to the virus.

One positive thing from all of this for me is that it is pushing me (and others) more into the digital age. I am attempting to learn how to produce on-line streaming, video blogs, etc. I hope to have some things up and running in a couple of weeks, including streaming our worship assembly and having a study available with new content each week.

SNIPPETS FROM MEN’S BREAKFAST

Are you satisfied with where your spiritual life is at? Why or why not? Are you spiritual growing, stagnant or declining (2 Peter 1:5-11)? Is your faith lacking something (1 Thess. 3:10)? If you are dissatisfied with where your spirituality is currently at, what can this congregation do to help bolster your faith?

Are you satisfied with the spirituality and vitality of the Columbine congregation? Why or why not? If you are not satisfied with the current state of the congregation, what can you do to help promote the spirituality of the Columbine congregation?

What activities are you willing to be involved in? What activities does this congregation need to stop doing (Sunday and Wednesday Bible classes and Sunday assemblies are not under consideration for this question)? Why are you not more involved in the current congregational activities? At the Men’s Breakfast, I suggested a men’s Bible study during breakfast or at a coffee shop. It looked there was some interest in this.

What is the identity of the Columbine congregation? What do we want the congregational identity to be?

Someone has said that there are three types of people. Those who do not know what is happening. Those who watch what is happening. Those who make things happen. Based on your participation in congregational activities this past year (not your intentions, thoughts, etc.) which group describes you?

There is work to be done, walls to be built (we have a big project to tackle). Kingdom building is hard work. It can be discouraging. There are many enemies and conspirators. The task seems overwhelming. There are parallels to the time of Nehemiah. Let us be like the people in the book of Nehemiah who rebuilt the walls of Jerusalem in fifty-two days (Neh. 6:15-16). They were about able to accomplish the task because of the help of God (Neh. 2:18, 20; 4:15-16) and they committed to the work (Neh. 2:17-18; 4:6).

desire to see Columbine “rebuilt.” Please share your answers to the above questions concerning this congregation with me (text, email, a note, a phone call, etc.). Please do not be the person in the stands who just watches what is going on. Everyone is needed. Your input is needed. “And they said, “Let us rise up and build.” So they strengthened their hands for the good work” (Neh. 2:18).

Mark’s Remarks

One important aspect of church revitalization is that the congregation gets an “outward” focus.

Two “outward” focused opportunities are in Columbine’s near future, and I hope you will commit to being a part of one or both of them.

One opportunity is FriendSpeak. FriendSpeak trains churches to reach out to our international neighbors with English, friendship, and the Word of God. As families from every corner of the globe arrive in our neighborhoods, Christians have an opportunity like never before to reach the world with the Good News of Jesus. FriendSpeak is useful because we offer people something they want but have difficulty finding – a friend who will help them practice and improve their conversational English.

FriendSpeak prepares God’s people to conduct well-planned, one-on-one, English conversation classes (entirely in English) while teaching them to share their faith in a very natural and comfortable way. Our training focuses on three core principles that empower Christians to act with confidence: 1) The Word is the teacher, and we are the illustration, 2) A friendly relationship is more productive than Teacher vs. Student, and 3) Scripture is the basis for conversation.

If using this method of evangelism interests you, please contact Mark Johnson (this week).

The second opportunity is Vacation Bible School, June 28-29. VBS is an opportunity to invite people to come and study God’s Word and get to know God’s people. Vacation Bible School is girls and boys, paste and paint, and noise.  It is paper and scissors, lessons and workbooks, and noise. It is games and refreshments, prayer and singing.  It is a good time. It is learning time.

Vacation Bible School is an opportunity to serve.

Vacation Bible School is an opportunity to invite family, friends, and neighbors.

Vacation Bible School is an opportunity to learn. VBS classes are not just for kids; we have an adult class!

Vacation Bible School is an opportunity to fellowship with the good people of God.