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The Sanctity of Life

45 years ago, the Supreme Court made a landmark decision in a court case known as Roe vs. Wade, making it legal for women to abort their children, if they so choose. In reaction to the anniversary, the church has called this "Sanctity of Life Sunday". Sanctity means "holy". The church has historically stood on the side of life. But why? Was it in response to this decision, or is something else going on here?

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Learning To Rejoice

Imagine a remove with a circle of chairs. The people sitting in the are nervous and fidgety. Finally one of them speaks. Hi, my name is Mike. ("Hi Mike") I am a theater guy. (audible gasps) I am not just a theater guy. I’m a musical theater guy. ("No." "It can’t be") I love musical theater and I haven’t seen a show in 4 weeks. I’m not just a musical theater guy. I think life would be better is it was lived as a musical! I envision a world where people waking up would go over to their bedroom window and open up the curtains. While looking out the window at the new day they would burst into…”Oh what a beautiful morning, Oh, what a beautiful day…” (from Oklahoma) But I’m a Christian and I know there are rules against not only theatre but happiness in general. That’s why I joined this group, so I get help with my addiction to singing, dancing, and joy so I can be a better Christian. I really want in my heart of hearts to be as sour faced and serious as I can be. I am here today to renounce joy, gladness, rejoicing, happiness and anything that might remotely resemble enjoyment in my life as a believer; to be as grumpy as possible in this life and the next. Whoa! Please someone stand up and stop me. Is everyone ok? Now some of what I said was true. I will leave it to you to guess what. Typically in Advent when we are lighting the candles one of them is to symbolize Joy. So I was compelled to examine joy as my sermon text was the angel’s statement, “I bring you good news of great joy.” As I was studying, I discovered that the Greek language, like the people, was more stoic and less emotional. Hence, there are 3 basic words for joy or rejoicing with a couple of others tossed in and Luke uses them all. Speaking of Greek, Thespis (6th century BC Greece) according to tradition, was the first person ever to appear on stage as an actor playing a character in a play (instead of speaking as himself). In other sources, he is said to have introduced the first principal actor in addition to the chorus. These plays were called tragedy. Actors from then on were referred to as Thespians. The Hebrew language on the other hand, has a bunch of words. There are 13 root words and 27 separate words for joy or joyful participation. As I was studying them the same verse popped up again and again as an example of something special in the scriptures. In two verses in the same book and the same chapter right next to each other, there are 8 separate words for joy or its expression. When the same or similar words are piled up or repeated we are supposed to take notice. It’s important and we should pay attention. These verses are our text this morning WARNING: Today, you may catch a glimpse of a God you don’t recognize. A God you might have never met. A God that will break many of the rules you have been taught by well-meaning religious people.

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The Purpose of the Local Church

Why did we feel compelled to plant Battle Creek Community Church? Doesn't Battle Creek have enough churches already? And if Jesus called us to plant this church, what does does He want to do with us?

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Keep Pressing On

With 2017 coming to a close and 2018 begins, what does God's Word have to say about how we should approach it?

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The Wait Is Over

The fourth week of Advent marks the transition from Advent into Christmas. We celebrate the fact that Christ has come and our waiting is over. But why is it over? The answer to this question comes in a word that we may not expect it to: glory. God's glory is tied to the end of our waiting. But how?

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