COUNTRYSIDE NEWS

 

It was a cool sunny morning this week as we gathered together for worship at Countryside Bible Fellowship. We opened with the hymns “More Love More Power”, “Make Me a Servant”, and “I Come to the Cross”. 

The scripture reading was from Psalms 17 where King David prays that God will confront the wicked and bring them down with His sword while yet looking forward to the day when his reward will be seeing the very face of God in resurrected glory and power. Continuing in Dr. R.C Sproul’s series Dust to Glory, we watched the episode “Joel, Micah and Habakkuk”. Sproul began by emphasizing that just because these books are members of a group known as the “Minor Prophets”, doesn’t mean they are any less significant. There is no such thing as a minor prophet, Sproul urged. The name simply refers to the length of the books. The Minor Prophets are simply shorter in length than those of the Major Prophets like Isaiah and Jeremiah. Joel begins chapter 2 by describing the great Day of the Lord as the day where God will scorch the earth with fire. He calls on the people to “rend their hearts and not their garments”. Towards the end of the chapter, God says “I will pour out my spirit on all people. …” The Apostle Peter later on in the book of Acts, says this passage in Joel was fulfilled on the day of Pentecost when the disciples were filled with the Holy Spirit in Jerusalem a few months after Christ’s ascension.  The book of Micah is most famous for its detailed predictions of the birthplace of the Messiah.  In chapter 5 it reads “But you Bethlehem, Ephrathah, though you are small …out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel.” And before that “they will strike the Judge of Israel on the cheek with a rod…” which is precisely what happened to Jesus the night before his crucifixion and as we all know he was born in the little town of Bethlehem like so many of our cherished Christmas songs say. In chapter 6 Micah renders one of the most memorable lines in all of scripture “And what does the Lord require of you? To do justice, to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” Dr. Sproul noted that the Hebrew word for “mercy” here is “hesed” which can be translated “Steadfast love”, and means to love loyally with a love whose nature is merciful, faithful, kind and long suffering.  Habakkuk opens his book by expressing his frustration towards God for how He appears to let evil triumph over good. In chapter 2, Habakkuk climbs up in his watchtower and demands an answer from God where he sees a vision. God says “write the vision and make it plain on tablets so he may run who reads it.”  In chapter 3 after receiving God’s reply, Habakkuk trembled with fear and awe in the presence of the Lord and decided to “wait Patiently for the day of calamity…” that God would bring on the wicked knowing “the just shall live by faith” and pledged that “though the fig tree does not bud… and the fields produce no food… yet will I rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior.” 

There are many other End Time prophecies in these books that are becoming more and more powerful the closer we get to Christ’s return. We encourage everyone to continue to pray and seek wisdom in this age of deception, to read the pier reviewed double blind medical research papers for yourselves and to listen to both sides of the debate rather than strictly the big, corporate, pharmaceutically funded, propaganda machines. Most of all, read and become familiar with the Bible itself. It’s the most influential book of all time and world wide best selling book since the invention of the printing press for a reason. It’s the infallible Word of God and bedrock foundation of truth. It contains the answers to life’s biggest questions — who am I? Why am I here? And where am I going?