For Sunday the 4th of March - 9:00am

This Sunday we will be meeting at 9:00am. For this week I'm including a summary of the readings:

GENESIS 15:1-12,17,18: This vision given to Abraham repeats and affirms the promises made to him previously when God called him to leave Haran. Abram asked, 'What will you give me?' because as yet there was no natural heir to give credence to a future land occupied by his descendants. Abram had followed common Mesopotamian custom in naming Eliezer (his slave) as heir in the absence of a natural heir. The answer to the matter of descendants lay in counting the stars. Abram's 'belief' of God's promise expresses the response God always looks for and honours with his fulfilment of promises. The answer to the question of land is given in the establishment of a covenant. The cutting in two of the sacrifices expressed the curses which might fall upon whichever party should break the covenant agreement. The passing of fire and smoke demonstrated the Lord's own presence and his assumption of the curses to himself personally. Thus God took full responsibility for the fulfilment of the promise. The huge territory promised, from Egypt to the Euphrates, only came about in King David's time.

PHILLIPAINS 3:17 - 4:1: There are always those in the church who agree to the teaching of salvation by the cross of Christ, yet wish to live for the pleasures of earthly appetites. Paul tells the Philippians not to follow this way of destruction to which those people are inevitably heading. The sure hopeful expectation of heaven, deeply imbedded in Christian faith, cannot help but move the believer to a life of willing obedience to Christ. This foreshadows the future eternal joy. Christians therefore, unswayed by worldly example, remain single-mindedly firm in the Lord.

LUKE 13:31-35: Jesus was on his way to Jerusalem, knowing that he would suffer and die. The messengers from Herod were probably trying to head Jesus off from Jerusalem. However, Jesus' determination to continue in accordance with his own plans recognises that his time to die was not in Herod's hands, but his Father's. It had to be that he should die in Jerusalem because of its hardness against God's messengers. His piteous concern for the inhabitants still recognises their inability to repent. Hence they would only greet him one day in judgment.

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