Christmas Services

Monday: Christmas Eve Service 7:30 p.m. in the Sanctuary.

Tuesday: Christmas Day Service 10:30 a.m. in the Sanctuary.

Wednesday, December 26: Prayers for Revival and the New Year 7:00-8:00 p.m. in the Sanctuary.

Salvation in No One Else

Salvation in No One Else

An Easter message from Bishop Charlie

My dear fellow believers, followers, and lovers of the Lord Jesus Christ,

Amazing as it may sound, this Jesus was born into this world to die.

His very name speaks of this. The Angel even before his birth said:

“Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” Matthew 1:20-21  

When his disciples finally discerned that Jesus was the Christ, the son of the living God, Jesus immediately began to prepare them for his death.

“And he began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again.” Mark 8:31

And from that point on it was clear he had resolutely set his face to go to Jerusalem to die and on the third day rise from the dead.

“And they were on the road, going up to Jerusalem, and Jesus was walking ahead of them. And they were amazed, and those who followed were afraid. And taking the twelve again, he began to tell them what was to happen to him, saying, ‘See, we are going up to Jerusalem, and the Son of Man will be delivered over to the chief priests and the scribes, and they will condemn him to death and deliver him over to the Gentiles. And they will mock him and spit on him, and flog him and kill him. And after three days he will rise.'”

Mark 10:32-34

After Jesus raised Lazarus, his friend, from death and Lazarus’s sister Mary had poured extravagant amounts of perfume on Jesus feet, he defended her and made it clear that this was preparing his body for burial. (John 12:5-8)

At one point Jesus says, speaking of the fact he himself is the Good Shepherd, that as such he would lay down his life for the sheep. More than that, he confirmed that this was his choice.

“I am the good shepherd. I know my own and my own know me, just as the Father knows me and I know the Father; and I lay down my life for the sheep. And I have other sheep that are not of this fold. I must bring them also, and they will listen to my voice. So there will be one flock, one shepherd.

For this reason the Father loves me, because I lay down my life that I may take it up again. No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This charge I have received from my Father.” John 10:14-18

Jesus died, the perfect for the imperfect, that he might bring us to God.

“For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit,” 1 Peter 3:18

“For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” 2 Corinthians 5:21

“All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned–every one–to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.” Isaiah 53:6

Finally, on the cross, when it was all done, he cried out, “It is finished” and it was.

“When Jesus had received the sour wine, he said, ‘It is finished,’ and he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.” John 19:30 

Jesus had done it all.

And after, he did die, and the spear of the soldier confirmed that he was truly dead as the blood and water poured out of his side:

“But one of the soldiers pierced his side with a spear, and at once there came out blood and water. He who saw it has borne witness–his testimony is true, and he knows that he is telling the truth–that you also may believe.”

John 19:34-35 

He was then laid in an unused grave provided by Joseph of Arimathea.

On the third day he was gloriously raised to life, never to die again.

“Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them.” Hebrews 7:25

And by his rising he conquered sin, death, judgement and Satan.

“And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him.” Colossians 2:13-15

This proved that this Jesus is the only savior, God’s son in the flesh:

“and was declared to be the Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by his resurrection from the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord,” Romans 1:4

And his name is as Peter said:

“And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” Acts 4:12

My dear, dear friends, this Easter, we who truly trust and love the risen Lord Jesus are of all people blessed. In fact Paul said:

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places” Ephesians 1:3

I urge you then to take time to ponder deeply all the events that we celebrate this week and particularly the cross and his resurrection and then, in humble gratitude, do the only reasonable thing that anyone could do in response to such love:

“I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.” Romans 12:1

And we who are so blessed, let us be careful to not keep the blessing of the gospel to ourselves but share with others freely and regularly.

On behalf of my fellow Bishops of ANiC, I greet you and bless you and all you love in the Name of this Risen Lord and Saviour.

And as I have been concluding each weekly video post, (do look for it each week on our website or Facebook) I urge you this coming week to search the scriptures daily and in every opportunity open your mouth and speak to people about the Crucified, Risen Lord Jesus.

“Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.” 1 Corinthians 15:58

He is risen from the dead. Alleluia!

 

The Right Reverend Charlie Masters

Diocesan Bishop

Christmas Services

Sunday, December 24: Christmas Eve Service 12:45pm

Monday, December 25: Christmas Day Service 10:30 am

Syl Apps “Wish List”

Next Sunday December 3 is when our gift bags are due. This is when our next visit is to Syl Apps. This wonderful ministry means so much to the young people there, and we so appreciate your generosity!

Picnic Lunch

Please join us for a picnic lunch at the Church of the Nazarene Sun. September 10 at 2:30 after the service.

Bring your chair.

Sunday: a new time and a new place

Sunday Worship

Traditional Values / Contemporary Worship
New Place: 320 Bronte Road (Church of the Nazarene)
New Time: Sunday 12:45 pm
First Service: June 4th 2017

The Great Reversal Part 4

The Great Reversal Part 4

March 19, 2017  

‘The Pharisee and the Tax Collector’

Luke 18:9-14   Then Jesus told this story to some who had great confidence in their own righteousness and scorned everyone else: 10 “Two men went to the Temple to pray. One was a Pharisee, and the other was a despised tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed this prayer: ‘I thank you, God, that I am not a sinner like everyone else. For I don’t cheat, I don’t sin, and I don’t commit adultery. I’m certainly not like that tax collector! 12 I fast twice a week, and I give you a tenth of my income.’

Luke 18:13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance and dared not even lift his eyes to heaven as he prayed. Instead, he beat his chest in sorrow, saying, ‘O God, be merciful to me, for I am a sinner.’

And then Jesus made his point, I tell you, this sinner, not the Pharisee, returned home justified before God. For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”

In order for us to understand it better, we need to hear the story again, like Jesus’ initial first listeners.

You see, when Jesus told this story, about 2000 years ago, it had a certain… shock factor.

So I thought I would rewrite a contemporary version of the story that might shed some more light on it.

The title of my story is:

Todd and Joe Go to Church

“One Sunday Todd and Joe went to church.

Todd and Joe were very different people.

First of all Todd:

Todd was very familiar with going to church. 

As far back as he could remember he went to church. His parents had taken him every single Sunday since he was a baby. Todd and his family lived right next door. In fact Todd’s dad, was the minister of the church.

Todd liked to be noticed, so every Sunday he wore his fanciest clothes to church.

He also thought he could grab some extra attention if  he bought himself the biggest bible he could find. 

He kinda liked the looks he got, so he always timed his entrance just right, and made his way to the very front of the church just seconds before the service started, carrying his big black floppy bible and sitting in the front so everyone could see him.

He made a big show bowing his head, and praying and singing really loud.

Todd thought it made him look holy and religious!

Todd liked the idea that people saw him as a young man who had his life all together.

He liked the image.

He felt very self righteous in his heart. 

In fact, he felt that he was a lot better than everyone else. 

He glowed with inner satisfaction. 

Todd even thought, he really had nothing to confess. Nothing to say sorry for to anyone… not even to Almighty God himself, he was that good. 

Out of the corner of his eye he noticed Joe. 

Joe had slipped into the building and was sitting in the very back row.

Todd thought to himself, “Why is he here?”

“What right does Joe have to be in church.” 

“That guy is a mess.”

“He has a troubled past.” 

“What a hypocrite!”

Todd and Joe’s eyes met for a second,  Joe quickly looked down at the floor.

He felt so…out of place, because he was thinking the very same thing… about himself.  

You see Joe had not been in church for a very long time… so long, he couldn’t even remember when. 

It was true, Joe did have a troubled past. 

He had gotten involved with a couple of bad crowds, had a few run in’s with the police, and yes, Joe knew he had made a mess of his life at times. 

That morning he felt like a hypocrite. 

Why did he come to church anyway?

Was it because he had an argument with his mom that morning denying that he had stolen something from her purse?

Or was it because the night before he had tried to step over the line with his girlfriend, and then drown his sorrows with alcohol?  

It was all of those things and neither of them.

You see, deep down in Joe’s heart he realized for the very first time how utterly wrong he had acted and even thought. 

A guilt and shame had come over him. Joe was tired of the kind of life he was leading. 

It was like the shades were being drawn back in the early morning bringing a stinging light, revealing the dirt in his life. 

“Oh God”, he prayed, with tears filling his eyes. “Oh God I am sorry, please, please, help me get my life together.”…………………..

I tell you…it was Joe, not Todd who went home that day from church in right standing with God, a true believer.”

Well, There you have it.

Two different people, two hearts… two destinies.

Jesus told this story because he was surrounded by people who had an attitude like..Todd.

Jesus identifies them as the Pharisees.

They were religious leaders, the clergy, the ministers.

Not that all of them were bad, but many of them, had no sense of any kind of need for God.

They looked good on the outside, but on the inside they were critical, judgemental, self assured and self righteous, hidden under a religious veneer.

So Jesus contrasts them with the most, unreligious and unrighteous person you could imagine, a tax collector.

My apologizes,  if there are any people here this morning who work for the Canadian tax services?

Now we might be a little put off by the whole paying tax thing, but in Jesus day, a tax collector was more like one of those war time enemy collaborators.

He was like the person in an occupied town whispering secrets to the enemy, so that some people, even neighbours, in the town were arrested and taken away. (The worst of the worst)

The tax collector in Jesus day worked for the enemy the Romans, the tax collector was like extortionists, they earned their living by taking more money than necessary, they were a disgrace. There was utter contempt towards people like this.

Two people who (on the surface) are at opposite ends of the moral spectrum.

You see Jesus tells this story to make a couple of shocking points:

First of all he tells it to reveal what God is like:

When in the early morning, we throw back the curtain into a pitch dark room: the light tends to reveal the imperfections, the dirt. God is like a search light. He knows what is going on in our hearts and minds.

The Pharisee prays:

‘Oh, God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, crooks, adulterers, or, heaven forbid, like this tax man.

The prayer reveals the Pharisee’s heart.

He is simply telling God all his good points, while at the same time, denouncing the tax collector.

He compares himself with others, instead of taking an honest look at his own life.

Don’t get me wrong, being a robber, a crook or a cheater is not a good thing, Jesus is telling this story because he knows that robbery or cheating does not start with the deed, but begins in our hearts and minds.

God searches the human heart.

The pharisee says to himself, I’m a good guy. I am so good, I don’t even really need God.

The tax collector on the other hand has a bit more realistic view of his life.

It is reflected in his heart felt prayer: Take a look at the last bit:

Luke 18:13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance and dared not even lift his eyes to heaven as he prayed. Instead, he beat his chest in sorrow, saying, ‘Oh God, be merciful to me, for I am a sinner.’

It’s a pretty simple prayer.

In other words, the tax collector prays, “I need God.”

And instantly Jesus rewards his attitude:

And then Jesus made his shocking point,  I tell you,

This sinner… Not the Pharisee, returned home justified before God.

In other words, he is made right with God:

Is approved by God. Forgiven by God. Given a new start, by God.

Jesus tells his story to tell us that God searches the human heart, and, the shocking fact, that absolutely no one is beyond God’s forgiveness and love.

Think about Todd and Joe, or the Pharisee and the tax collector, two different people, two kinds of inner life, and two eternal destinies.

What kind of person, what kind of heart do you have?

Let me lead us in this simple  prayer:

“O God, the Creator, who sent your Son Jesus as the Way, the Truth and the Life to save me and all the world, I believe in your reality. Help my unbelief.

I long to understand all that it means to be loved, known, and forgiven by you, and to be remade and transformed into the person you designed me to be.

I know I have not always been the kind of person I should be, I know I have sinned against you, others, myself, and even the creation of which I am part.

Lord Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me, a sinner. Open my eyes to all that you are, and draw me closer to God, through Jesus Christ. Amen.

Peter Jensen and Peter J Akinola in Burlington March 2nd

And in Vancouver March 7th.

Register here:

We have the privilege of hearing from the Most Rev Dr Peter Jensen, General Secretary of GAFCON and Retired Archbishop of Sydney, Australia; and the Most Rev Peter J Akinola, founding father of GAFCON and former Primate of the Church of Nigeria, Anglican Communion.

The Alpha Course is starting February 24!

The Alpha Course is coming to Oakville in February!

Kerr Street Mission, 485 Kerr St (just south of Speers Rd)

 

Next Session– Friday, Feb 24, Noon- 1:15pm

 

You are invited to join us! For more information please speak to Gord or Doreen Clark.

ANiC priest loses house in fire

Rev. Andre Leroux has lost his house in a fire. A neighbour has started a Gofundme campaign to help him rebuild.

You can contribute here:

Early this morning my neighbour Andre was snowblowing the driveway only to realize that when he had finished to find his house was in flames… The fire department came but the house is completely gone and everything in it. He himself physically is ok but emotionally he is devistated I would really appreciate if anyone could help him

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