"Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us…" -Ephesians 5:1-2

More Grace Available, Resist, Humble Yourselves

Elder Jonathan Cook then presented a vibrant sermon using James 4:6-10 as a primary text, with support from 1st Timothy 6:3-6, Malachi 3:6, 2nd Chronicles 32:24-30, Isaiah 38:1-5, 1st Peter 5:5-11, James 4:2-3, and a number of other scriptures. Elder Cook began by explaining that there are three main things to take from his primary text that go beyond the grace of God that brings eternal salvation to us. First, we need to understand that God is in opposition to those that are prideful, boastful, or a braggers, but He provides a greater grace for daily living (e.g., spiritual gifts, gospel knowledge, joy, and deeper fellowship with the saints) to those that walk humbly before Him. Secondly, we need to resist all the temptations of the Devil so that he will flee from us. Thirdly, we must seek always to draw closer to God and as a result He will draw even closer to us. Elder Cook emphasized that in all our discussions we should seek to share what the Word of God says regarding a matter, and not rest on our own opinions, or something we’ve heard others say, for God changes not – – and His position on a matter never changes. Elder Cook also reminded us that Godliness with contentment is great gain – – it is so much greater than having everything this world can offer and still being utterly miserable. As an example of humility, he reminded us that King Hezekiah in the Old Testament humbled himself before God and, subsequently, both he and the entire nation of Israel prospered and were greatly blessed as a result. Pastor Cook also emphasized that it is important, especially for the youngsters, to be respectful of our elders and for all of us to be subject one to another, and watching over one another. Elder Cook further emphasized that the Lord Jesus Christ is always available to us and that we need to cast all our cares upon Him on a continual basis. He further emphasized that scripture directs us to be sober and vigilant (i.e., clear headed and watchful) for Satan goes about seeking those he may devour, and his lies and deception are powerful and can lead us into much pain and destruction. Elder Cook also warned us to pray diligently and to not to befriend the world, for the world is not a friend of God. We must diligently walk away from all of this world’s temptations and constantly and consistently apply the wisdom contained in scripture to our lives each day.

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