Tuesday, March 5, 2024
Tuesday, March 5, 2024
HomeAll The NewsSTATE MISSIONS: Has Our Salt Lost Its Saltiness? (part 2)

STATE MISSIONS: Has Our Salt Lost Its Saltiness? (part 2)

“Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men”(Matt. 5:13).

Real blood-bought Christianity rubs the world the wrong way. This has caused our country to be flooded with a cold steam religion that neither irritates nor saves. Our gospel is one of absolutes, and if the preacher’s message rubs the congregation the wrong way, they need to turn around and then it will rub them the right way. Paul stated, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth” (Rom. 1:16).

There is nothing wrong with the pure plain gospel. It’s the watered-down, sugar-coated religions that cause most church members to become irritated with the kind of preaching those men in the Bible were guilty of. We are instructed to take His yoke upon us and teach and preach the truth, and the truth, in short, is repent or perish. Is it even possible to follow and serve Jesus and not teach the whole council of God? Even if it means touching on subjects like hellfire, calling sin sin and living a separated life different than those of the world.

The cry today is fellowship, bring in all kinds and let us fellowship. “Can two walk together, except they be agreed?” (Amos 3:3). “Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing;” (II Cor. 6:17). The call to fellowship, with every ism and schism, originated in Hell and not in Heaven. The very action of “living godly” is a rebuke against this world. When you believe in a church separated from worldliness, modernism and compromise, you are looked upon as being narrow-minded, uncooperative and as a holier-than-thou individual. 

All these people are doing is trying to be salty. Those who live lives other than as described in the Bible are hypocrites, blinded guides and whited sepulchers that are full of dead men’s bones. We are to love the lost, but we are to come out from them pulling them out of the fire to speak. After all, the life we have to share is much better than the one they now have, or is it? Because, while we are in this world we are not of this world — “know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God” (James 4:4).

From Our Missionaries

Misión Creciendo en Cristo (Growing in Christ), NorthLittle Rock: Juan Carlos Posadas writes, “Thank God for our Vacation Bible School. We had 70 kids, and the Word of God was clearly exposed to the children and parents who visited us. Four children and four adults were evangelized. We had four professions — Maylee (11), Cristofer (12), Beverly (13) and Lisdenia (13). We invited the parents to the closing ceremony at our Sunday meeting, and we were visited for the first time by 3 mothers and 18 children.

“We had 24 VBS volunteers — four from other churches and the rest from home. They all had an excellent attitude, serving God with all their hearts. Let us pray for a good follow-up with the new families we have contacted, especially let us pray for the families of the children who received Christ.”

Ebenezer, West Little Rock: Ruben Isturiz writes, “Last week, we addressed in the workshop ‘Principles of Evangelism, Discipleship and Gospel Movements’ third theme of 10 sessions. They are still identifying, through ‘The Oikos Map,’ people in their social context. We continue praying for God to make us see people around us, in this session we are doing the ‘5-5-5-5

Experiment,’ which consists of focusing on 5 people from our Oikos Map, praying 5 minutes a day for 5 weeks, that God would touch their hearts.

“We will not have the workshop this week as some of us will be accompanying our mother church in their Vacation Bible School program. It will be beautiful to see both congregations working together. After our VBS, we will continue with the training on Monday in a face-to-face way and on Wednesdays online. On Sunday some already started to give thanks for what God is showing people in their social context.

“Once again, thank you for your support — both in prayer and in your offerings. Thank you for being partners in ministry. To God be the glory!”

Faith Chapel, Flippin: Johnny Shew writes, “For the second week in a row, we had a new record attendance. Praise God! I know it is not all about numbers and we are not just trying to fill seats, but thank You, Lord, for sending us a houseful again. Even with several of our members out, we had our most ever. And even with three of our own kids out, we had more teens than ever, and the usual number of under seven-year-olds. Praise God again! 

“I am especially encouraged because we have also had record attendance on Sunday nights for the last two weeks! People are engaged and participating in our Bible studies. They are inviting people, and we are seeing them worshipping in spirit and in truth. It is amazing to watch and be a part of.

“The Lord is blessing this work, and we firmly believe it is because of your prayers and support for us, Faith Chapel, Flippin and the whole community. Please continue. The Lord is hearing your prayers and answering them!”

The Table, Springdale: Clinton Morris writes, “This week, we held several meetings, enjoyed the opportunities to visit with others and had training sessions with Drew, where we are setting goals for the next few months and are working toward prepping the Church Constitution and the Articles of Faith.

“We met with our own folks on Monday, following up with anything from the week before and making sure that we are keeping on track. In the evening we had 27 people at the house. The numbers are steady. We have had an average of 28 people at our house every Monday since January, and this has led to 10 people attending our mission.

“Tuesday was a concert with one of the couples we have been visiting with in our Monday gatherings. I also have gotten to know the wife’s mom and stepdad. We are setting up some things to do with this couple on a regular basis. It is so amazing to see how God brings people together.

“Our Men’s Bible Study on Wednesday is progressing. We are going through the Presence Centered Church by Bill Elliff. This book is so powerful, and the conversations we have been having are amazing. To have a group of men discuss precepts of God for over 90 minutes is encouraging.

“Thursday evening, I met with the BMA of the Ozarks Mission Committee. It was encouraging to hear from the other missionaries and to have the opportunity to present the ministry of The Table.

“Friday was partially off, and we had a relaxing evening with Drew and Kaley. Part of the evening was spent Vision Casting for the future of the church. We began talking about some of the plans and hopes for next year.

“Saturday morning, we had a soggy experience at the local farmers market and enjoyed a fun time as a family. The evening was spent with one of our new couples that we have been encouraging. They have been coming since May, and they are growing in their understanding of Christianity. I am hopeful that they will accept Christ soon.

“I spent Sunday morning with one of our men who has been out of town for a few months. We had a great time of encouragement and fellowship. In our Sunday evening service, we had 32 people and 4 guests. Many of our folks who have been out for vacations and sickness have made it back. We were so thrilled to be able to fellowship and worship God together.

“The second Sunday of August, we are going to celebrate our one-year anniversary of meeting at Old Pine Coffee Roasters. I truly cannot believe it has only been a year. So many things have happened and so many people have been affected by The Table and the message of the gospel. Thank you so much for your continued support and prayer.”

Faith Journey, Benton: Bryan Clay writes, “This week at Faith Journey, we’ve been trying to get the word out about our mission by going out and just inviting people in the community. This is sometimes the easiest way to let them know who you are and where you are! We love letting people know what God is doing in the area and that we want to have them be a part of it. 

“Our lesson at the meeting this week was on John 15:1-2. Jesus tells us that He will remove non-fruit-bearing branches and prune us so that we may produce more good fruit. God will use this type of shaping to mold us into His image so we may bear good fruit in our lives to show others His love through us.

“This week, we are looking forward to the visit from the Advisory Committee and being able to show them where we are currently meeting and sharing with them the area that God has led me to. It should be a great time!”

Misión Gracia Soberana (Sovereign Grace), NWA:Roberto Marcelletti writes, “This week, I have been reviewing and praying for the plans that the Lord has given us for the Northwest area of Arkansas. He used a meeting with the Ozarks Missions Committee where I met a group of pastors and leaders and presented my planting project for the Hispanic church. It was good to go back to the book of facts and

review the details of the chapter that I consider to be a summary of the mission of the church. I also told them about our philosophy of ministry, with an acrostic that in Spanish means ‘Networks:’ Relate (connection or entrance to the place and people); Evangelism (sharing the gospel); Discipleship (this phase includes teaching for baptism, membership, leadership); Establish new churches (send); and continue the process again in another area.

“I explained to them that we were relating to some people, we are evangelizing others and we are in discipleship with others. Every month we have a massive event where we recommend the entire group of people that we have on our prayer list.

“We had a visit this week from a family that came because Patty has a problem with her back, and we took the opportunity to share with them about the plan. On Wednesday, a couple of women also came and we shared coffee and what God is doing in our lives. We continue our discipleship with the three groups. Some come on Thursday at 5 p.m., others on Friday at 7 p.m. and others on Saturday at 7 p.m. 

“I ask for your prayers because it was not easy this week to keep weekly appointments due to the rains and work. One woman who was to come on Saturday morning canceled at the last minute because it was raining that day. The good thing is she is very interested and plans to come to visit us next Saturday, so we continue with the plan.”