Tuesday, September 27, 2011

SMBC Fall Church Institute

Today begins our first Fall Church Institute at the Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church.

The Church Institute will be three nights (Sept. 27-29) or Bible preaching and teaching, corporate worship, and spiritual renewal.

At 6 PM, there will be classes on various aspects of Christian discipleship, which will include classes for children, youth, young adults, singles, men, women, and financial stewardship. Several local pastors and professors will lead classes on Church History, and Old and New Testaments surveys.

At 7 PM, there will be a time of corporate worship. Our guest speaker will be the Dr. John Adolph of the Antioch Baptist Church of Beaumont, TX. Pastor Adolph was one of our guest speakers for our Wednesdays in the Word in February 2010. The Lord used him in a great way to bless and encourage our congregation. We trust that the Lord will use him over these three nights to minister the word.

Maurice Griffin from Chicago will be our guest soloist each night. Maurice was a contestant on BET’s Sunday’s Best competition. I did not hear him on the show, which I do not watch! But I had the privilege of hearing this young man at a conference in Dallas this past summer. And I was blessed by the two occasions I had to hear him sing. I am glad to have him as our guest.

I am really looking forward to these three nights. And I pray that our congregation will be enriched and edified by the ministry of the word.

Please cover these nights in believing prayer.

If you are able to attend, please join us for study and worship. If not, you can catch a live stream of the service through our website at www.smbcjax.com

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Notes from Sunday - 09/11/11

It was a long but good day.

I praise God for all that he is doing in and through the Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church!

Throughout the day, my thoughts have drifted back to the tragedy that took place 10 years ago today. Remembering. Grieving. Praying.

I had just fallen to sleep after finishing a sermon for a special prayer meeting we were to have that night. I was knocked-out on the coach. The phone kept ringing. It was my mom, calling to tell me to turn on the TV. Do you remember where you were when you heard the news that our nation was under attack?

For the record, I am proud to be an American!!!

During our Bible Study Fellowship hour we have a rally to introduce to new groups and pray for our new teachers.

Today’s Fighter Verse was 2 Corinthians 9:6-7. It was a good start to our new corporate Scripture memorization system. Next week’s verse is 2 Corinthians 9:8.

Grateful for all the guests in worship with us today.

Praise God for the one who was baptized today.

Our opening hymn was great today! I love hymns!

Our children’s choir sung today. It was the first time they have sung in several months. They did a good job, as usual.

The choir sung Richard Smallwood’s new song, “Trust Me,” before the message. It is a beautiful song.

I began a three-part series that I am calling “Real Church.” I preached today on “Real Worship” from John 4:19-24.

I strived to make the point that real worship is about God and not about you!

I preached all day with a sore throat. But his grace is sufficient and his strength is perfected in my weakness.

I plan to preach next Sunday on “Real Change” from 2 Timothy 3:14-17.

Praise God for those who were saved and added to the church today.

My family and I went to the Jaguars home opener this afternoon. The Jags beat the Tennessee Titans 16-14.

It was so unbelievably hot that I felt I was going to melt right in my seat.

The halftime tribute to the 9/11 victims, families, and first responders was moving and beautiful.

I am so glad that football is back!

I cannot believe the beat down the Indianapolis Colts received today without Payton Manning.

I am disappointed that Serena Williams lost in the US Open Finals today.

The Dallas Cowboys gave us a 4th quarter lead to lose to the New York Jets tonight. This is not the way we were supposed to start the season.

The USC Trojans defeated Utah 24-13 this weekend. You can put us on probation. But you cannot keep us down. Go Trojans!!!

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

From HBC2 to SMBC (09/07/11)

Good day, Shiloh family members.

Hope you are having a good week so far.

Here are several updates for this week that I want you to be aware of.

Midday Bible Study. Today begins our new Midday Bible Study, which will be led by Pastor Brodes C Perry. It starts at noon and will last for one hour. The study will be through “The Journey of a Lifetime,” a yearlong survey through the entire Bible. Pray for this meeting. Come out and participate, if you are able.

Midweek Worship Service. Tonight, I plan to continue our material on “How to Study the Bible for Yourself.” I hope to finish the material tonight. But, we’ll see.

Men’s Prayer Breakfast. Our Men’s Prayer Breakfast will meet this Saturday from 9-10 AM. We will share a meal together and then hear the word explained. I plan to teach this Saturday. I look forward to seeing our brothers out for this great time of learning and fellowship.

Fighter Verses. Our memory verse(s) for this week is 2 Corinthians 9:6-7. We will quote it in worship together Sunday in both of our services. Praying for you as as you follow through your commitment to memorize scripture.

Real Church. This Sunday, I plan to begin a new, 3-part series entitled, “Real Church.” Sunday’s message will be on “Real Worship” from John 4:19-24. Invite a friend to join you for worship.

Back to Church Sunday. September 18 is National Back to Church Sunday. Invite an unsaved or unchurched person to worship with you in one of our services.

MADD Reloaded. Our Make a Difference Day Reloaded will take place on Saturday, September 24. Check in with your ministry or district leaders to find out how you can participate in blitzing our community with acts of love.

Fall Church Institute. Remember that our first Fall Church Institute will take place September 27-29. There will be discipleship classes available each night at 6 PM. Then there will be a time of corporate worship at 7 PM. Dr. John R. Adolph of the Antioch Baptist Church in Beaumont, TX. You do not want to miss one night of this great meeting!

This is a busy month. Please cover these events in believing prayer. Be marked present. And invite someone to join you for worship.

God bless,


Sunday, September 04, 2011

Notes from Sunday - 09/04/11

What a great day of worship at Shiloh!

I love the Lord Jesus Christ! I love the word of God! And I love the Shiloh Metropolitan Baptist Church!

I led a Q&A session during our Bible Study Fellowship hour today. I had a great time teaching my congregation in dialogue.

We had a special time of worship and fellowship during our Lord’s Supper observance today.

I am grateful for all of the guests who were in worship with us today, including friends from Detroit and the Williams family reunion.

God be praised for all our volunteers who served today.

The choir sung one of my throwback favorites – God Will Take Care Of You (by Edwin Hawkins).

I initiated a corporate scripture memorization program for our church today. We will use the Fighter Verses established by the Bethlehem Baptist Church of Minneapolis. I pray the Lord uses our commitment to memorize scripture to cause us to grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.

I preached on “Spiritual Warfare through Scripture Memorization,” using Ephesians 6:17b as by base scripture.

I gave the church five basic reasons why we should practice the spiritual discipline of scripture memorization:

1. It will draw you closer to God.
2. It will lead you to spiritual victory.
3. It will strengthen your prayer life.
4. It will make you a better witness for Christ.
5. It will equip you to minister to others.

Pulpit monitors: 2 – HBC2: 0. The loser gets a sore throat.

Praise God for those who were saved and added to the church in our worship services today.

I plan to begin a new series next week that I will call “Real Church.” The first message will be on “Real Worship” from John 4:21-24.

The college football system began with a bang this weekend. USC defeated Minnesota 19-17. You can unfairly sanction us, but you cannot keep the Trojans down!

Happy Labor Day! Be safe. Have fun. God bless.

Saturday, September 03, 2011

On Memorizing Scripture

He was in the wilderness. He was exhausted. He was hungry and thirsty. He was alone. He was attacked by the Devil. He was armed with the word of God. He was victorious. With confidence in the sacred scriptures, Jesus prevailed against the tempter's deceitful schemes (see Matt. 4:1-11). The Lord defeated Satan with three verses from Deuteronomy. How much more can you and I resist temptation, live obediently, and endure hardship if we get the word of God into our hearts and minds through scripture memorization?

There are very few spiritual disciples that are more beneficial than scripture memorization. It arms you with truth to resist temptation. It renews your mind as you meditate on scripture. It shapes and strengthens your prayer life, enabling you to pray the scriptures back to God. It makes the wisdom of God readily available for decision-making. It arms you with biblical authority for counseling fellow-believers or witnessing to lost people. It gives comfort in times of grief, sorrow, and persecution. And it fills your mind and mouth with truth to offer as grateful praise to God in worship.

Here are seven steps you can take to begin and stay on track down the narrow but life-giving path of scripture memorization.

1. Have a plan. When left alone, good intentions suffocate spiritual progress. Godly desires must have the fresh air of practical commitments in order to breathe and live and grow. So establish a definite plan for scripture memorization - a plan that works for you. Decide when you will do it. Select what verses you are going to memorize. Have a plan and establish measurable, challenging, attainable goals.

2. Start small. Don't begin by telling yourself that you are going to memorize a chapter a week. No you’re not. And your failure will only discourage you in the future. Remember, each victory will help you another to win. So start small and build on your successes. One or two verses a week is a good place to begin.

3. Select verses that are meaningful to you. The Bible is filled with hundreds of verses worth memorizing. Many profitable Bible memory systems are also available. And pastors and teachers may encourage you to memorize certain passages. Draw from all of these sources for ideas. But also select your own memory verses. Choose passages that are meaningful to you and that you find helpful.

4. Make memory cards to keep with you. Write out the verse on a card that you can take wherever you go. And when you have spare moments – on a break, in a waiting room, or between activities – you can read, review, and recite your memory verses.

5. Get a Bible memory partner. Do you have a prayer partner? If not, you should. A good prayer partner can give you support, hold you accountable, and celebrate victories with you. A good Bible memorization partner can do the same. Iron sharpens iron. So consider partnering with someone for mutual support in memorizing scripture.

6. Keep practicing your verses. Scripture memorization does not come easy for most of us. But don’t be too quick to blame it on a poor memory. Scripture memorization is spiritual warfare. But our spiritual enemy cannot prevail against the word of God. So keep practicing your verses until you get them down. Then constantly review them. Remember, repetition is the key to memorization.

7. Pray for God’s help. Do you fear that you cannot memorize scripture? Tell God about your fears. Do you need strength to remain focused? Ask the Lord for it. Do you need wisdom for selecting verses or managing your quiet time? Pray with confidence for these things. God is glorified as you learn to think and behave biblically. So labor and pray and trust the Lord to help you to make the word a treasure in your heart, so that you might not sin against him (Ps. 119:11).