lent to easter 2015

It's Friday But Sunday's Coming! by David Flowers

Today is Good Friday. We call it "good" because it's not a stand alone event. If it weren't for the resurrection on what we call Easter Sunday, there would be nothing "good" about Friday.

So today while we reflect on the death of Jesus, we know that we do not grieve as those who have no hope. No, we experience the pain and sorrow of loss, but we do so much differently than the rest of the world, or at least we should. Why? Because Jesus has defeated death.

Tony Campolo will forever be known for preaching a sermon entitled It's Friday But Sunday's Coming! Let's remember that this is now the way we are to view the world.

We live in a Good Friday world, but Easter Sunday is coming, even now it's breaking in.

This Sunday morning we will be celebrating this mysterious reality of resurrection as we conclude our Lent to Easter 2015 series with The God Who Raises The Dead

Dead is dead. Whether it be in the ancient world or in modern times, when people die they stay dead. But as we’ve learned in this series, God turns the ways of the world upside down and inside out. Easter Sunday is the quintessential expression of God’s wisdom and power to do the unexpected and the impossible. He is the God who raises the dead!

In this final message, I'll lead us through the discovery of the empty tomb, to seeing Jesus transformed and exalted, to hearing the apostle Paul insist that our faith is futile without the resurrection. This happy morning we’re all being invited to participate in the resurrection. What did it mean in the first century? And what difference does it make today?

I hope you will join us for this special time of worship.

He has risen!

Pastor David

Lent 1 -- Further Thoughts on Biblical Inspiration & Genesis 1-11 by David Flowers

Hello CMF,

I have put together an addendum to the sermon, offering further thoughts on Genesis 1-11.  But first, I talk about some of the meaning of biblical inspiration and authority.

Contrary to the way we normally think about the Bible, it's not just one book. The Bible is made up of many books. To be specific, the Bible is a library of 66 books, written by over 40 authors, spanning hundreds of years, and utilizing different literary genres to communicate theological truths.

On top of that, we have the hard work, but wonderful privilege, of interpreting it today. I have found this task very rewarding over the years. It has strengthened my faith in Christ.

Here are some suggested books for learning more about reading and studying the Bible:

If you're looking for more focused reading on Genesis 1-11, check out the following:

As you can see, John Walton, prof of OT at Wheaton College, is sort of the premier voice on the first few chapters of Genesis at the moment. Listen to Walton talk briefly about ancient cosmology and the flood here. And for his thoughts on the tower of Babel, listen to him here.

Finally, you may be interested in this article on the flood from BioLogos, and a video from scholar N.T. Wright talking about history and myth at work in Genesis.

Let me hear from you if you have any questions or thoughts.

Blessings,
David

Lent to Easter 2015 Prayer Calendar

Lent to Easter 2015 Series by David Flowers

Hello CMF,

Today is Ash Wednesday. On the liturgical calendar this is the time we remember that we came from the dust and to the dust we shall return (Gen 3:19b). We remember that we are sinners who serve a holy God. We are in need of his forgiveness and salvation daily.

It is also the first day of the 40-day journey to Easter, which we call Lent. Some may choose to fast today and on other days during the Lent to Easter season. This could be fasting from food to realize your greater dependence upon the Spirit, or it could be abstaining from something else that you believe is hindering your relationship with God and others.

What trips you up? What causes you to sin (misuse your human energies)? In what way might the Spirit be calling you to "starve" your flesh during Lent?

This Sunday we kick off our Lent to Easter 2015 series called, Upside Down & Inside Out. Each week we will be reminded that whatever God is doing, it isn't "same old, same old." This is good news! God wants to do a new thing.

Our Leader worship guide provides us with an outline of worship services and sermons that focuses on renewal for those who are already committed to Christ and the church.

In discussing this series with the Worship Team, we thought this was evidence that the Spirit is at work in our church, speaking to all of us. How is God speaking to us?

Well, you may recall that in January we talked about covenant and commitment as we instituted covenant membership at CMF. Committing to Christ and the church, or simply desiring spiritual renewal for ourselves and our church, is for everyone. We're all in need of renewal.

What does renewal look like for those already committed?

Our Lent to Easter series will focus our attention on our need to see how and where God is at work in our personal walk with him, and in the life of our church.

What is God doing? What does he want to do? Will we allow him to work? Will we join him?

This year I wanted to help us be intentional in how we pray during Lent. I have put together a CMF Lent to Easter Prayer Calendar. I hope it enhances your journey through this season.

I look forward to seeing everyone this Sunday as we begin our trek toward Easter.

Blessings,
Pastor David

NOTE:  We had to cancel church last Sunday due to the extreme winter weather. I plan to preach the message Sabbath, Silence & Solitude after our current series.