“Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift,” 11 Corinthians 9:15.
Once upon a time there was an auction. Not just any auction but a really big auction. Missouri knows a lot about auctions because they have a lot of them. Some auctions around here even spill into the next day. Now, that’s an auction.
Pastor Josh told us about an auction he took his daughter to. While they were there, they bid on several things. His daughter would hold up the bidding card when her dad told her to. Finally, they came to something that caught his daughter’s eye. Now, you could tell by looking at her face that this was something that was special to her. Dad looked up the item, saw what it was worth and would tell his girl to hold up the card. He wanted it for her because of the look she gave it.
Someone else was bidding on it too. They would go back and forth, first Pastor Josh and his daughter and then the other person. Finally, they came to the value of this prize. The card went up from the other bidder. Dad looked at his daughter and saw the look in her eyes. He told her to put her card up and they bid over the value. Apparently the other person knew the worth of it and didn’t bid again. The smile on his daughter’s face was worth more than any price paid.
Satan has had it in for man since his creation. Every despicable evil has been planted in man’s heart to steal his soul from him. God has looked on and seen the evil that man has done. His creation that He breathed the very life into has become wicked. Satan is proud of his handiwork. But then, God steps in. He goes one bid higher. One that Satan cannot pervert. God decides that there will be a redemption price paid for man’s soul.
God, the ruler of the universe, says that all souls are his but that souls that sin must die. (Ezekiel 18:4) It’s His will that all souls should be saved. (Ezekiel 13:23) The price He bids is a steep one, the steepest of all–the sacrifice of His only Son.
We had communion this Sunday. Our dear Pastor wants us to understand and value “the body that was broken for us.” He went on to tell us that we should thank God for the old rugged cross. Back in I Corinthians 11, the people had made a mockery out of communion. Pastor Josh said, “Be careful of mixing the things of the world and the things of God. Don’t frustrate the grace of God. The world can be proud of a deer head on the wall but not for Christians to be proud of Jesus.”
You can visit us at our website swedenchurch.com. It is complete with audios of the sermons. Pastor Joshua Strong can also be heard on our radio program which is on KKOZ 92.1 FM at 8:05 a.m. Sunday mornings. Better yet, come and hear Brother Josh live. Sunday morning service begins at 11 a.m. (Sunday school is at 10 a.m.) and evening service begins at 6 p.m. Bible study is Wednesday evenings at 7 p.m. except for our business meeting which is held the second Wednesday of each month. Sweden Church is east of Ava about 10 miles on Highway 14 and then left onto 14-219 a quarter-mile. Services are at 11 am. and 6 p.m. Sundays.