We Mourn With Those Who Mourn! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 07/21/2019

We Mourn With Those Who Mourn!

July 21st, 2019 

Verse of the Week 

15 “Rejoice with those who rejoice, mourn with those who mourn.”

~ Romans 12:15

1.    The Lord COMFORTS us when we mourn.

Matthew 5:4 – “Blessed are those who mourn for they shall be comforted.”

2.    We STAND with those who mourn.

Romans 12:15 – “Rejoice with those who rejoice, mourn with those who mourn.”

3.    The Lord will wipe every TEAR from our eyes.

Revelation 21:4 – “He will wipe every tear from their eyes.  There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”

4.    Thanks to Christ we have HOPE that transcends death.

1 Thessalonians 4:13 – “Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind who have no hope.”

More! * Pastor Pat McCornack * 07/14/2019

More!

July 14th, 2019 

Verse of the Week 

20 “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us.”

~ Ephesians 3:20

1.    Ephesians 2:7 – 7 “In order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.”

2.    Matthew 7:7-11 – 7 “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.  8 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.  9 “Which of you, if your son asks for bread, will give him a stone?  10 Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake?  11 If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!”

3.    Psalm 139:13,15-16 – 13 “For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.  15 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.  16 Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be.”

4.    Jeremiah 29:11 – 11 “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

5.    Ephesians 2:10 – 10 “For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

6.    Philippians 1:6 – 6 “Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”

7.    Romans 8:29-30 – 29 “For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. 30 And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.”

8.    1 John 3:2 – 2 “Dear friends, now we are children of God, and what we will be has not yet been made known.  But we know that when Christ appears, we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.”

9.    Isaiah 9:7 – 7 “Of the increase of his government and peace there will be no end.  He will reign on David’s throne and over his kingdom, establishing and upholding it with justice and righteousness from that time on and forever.  The zeal of the Lord Almighty will accomplish this.”

10.  1 Corinthians 3:7 – 7 “So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.”

11.  Nehemiah 8:10 – 10 “Nehemiah said, “Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is holy to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”

12.  Hebrews 13:20-21 – 21 “May the God of peace…equip you with everything good for doing his will, and may he work in us what is pleasing to him, through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory for ever and ever.  Amen.”

13.  Mark 10:29-30 – 29 “Truly I tell you,” Jesus replied, “no one who has left home or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or fields for me and the gospel 30 will fail to receive a hundred times as much in this present age: homes, brothers, sisters, mothers, children and fields — along with persecutions — and in the age to come eternal life.”

14.  1 Corinthians 12:18 – 18 “But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be.”

15.  Colossians 1:10 – 10 “So that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God.”

16.  1 Thessalonians 3:12 – 12 “May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you.”

God Is Just! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 07/07/2019

God Is Just!

2 Thessalonians 1:5-7

July 7th, 2019 

Verse of the Week 

6 “God is just:  He will pay back trouble to those who trouble you 7 and give relief to you who are troubled, and to us as well.”

~ 2 Thessalonians 1:6-7

1.    God is RIGHTEOUS in his judgment.

2 Thessalonians 1:5 – “All this is evidence that God’s judgment is right…”

Psalm 9:8 – “And he judges the world with righteousness; he judges the peoples with uprightness.”

2.    Through our suffering we demonstrate that we are WORTHY of God’s kingdom.

2 Thessalonians 1:5 – “…And as a result you will be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which you are suffering.”

Acts 5:41 – “The apostles left the Sanhedrin, rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name.”

3.    The Lord will PUNISH those who create problems for us.

2 Thessalonians 1:6 – “God is just: He will pay back trouble to those who trouble you.”

2 Peter 2:13 – “They will be paid back with harm for the harm they have done.”

Romans 12:19 – “Behold, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”

4.    The Lord will give RELIEF to those of us who are troubled.

2 Thessalonians 1:7 – “And give relief to you who are troubled.”

2 Peter 2:9 – “If this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue godly men from trials and to hold the unrighteous for the day of judgment, while continuing their punishment.”

Introduction to 2 Thessalonians! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 06/30/2019

Introduction to 2 Thessalonians!

2 Thessalonians 1:1-4

June 30th, 2019 

Verse of the Week 

4 “Therefore, among God’s churches we boast about your perseverance and faith in all the persecutions and trials you are enduring.” 

~ 2 Thessalonians 1:4

1.    Paul wrote this 2nd letter to the Thessalonians to CLARIFY certain misunderstandings from his 1st letter.

This letter was written shortly after the first letter around AD 50.

2 Thessalonians 2:1 – “Concerning the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ and our being gathered to him, we ask you, brothers, not to become easily unsettled or alarmed by some prophecy, report or letter supposed to have come from us, saying that the day of the Lord has already come.”

From the very beginning, God’s holy scripture has often been misunderstood.  This letter is perfect evidence.  We have to be very careful to interpret all of Scripture very carefully or it could lead to error, confusion, and concern.

2.    Paul offers a sweet SALUTATION and THANKSGIVING for the Church at Thessalonica.

2 Thessalonians 2:1 – “Paul, Silas and Timothy, To the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.”

2 Thessalonians 2:2 – “Grace and peace to you from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.”

2 Thessalonians 2:3 – “We ought always to thank God for you, brothers, and rightly so, because your faith is growing more and more and the love every one of you has for each other is increasing.”

3.    Paul commends the Church for PERSEVERING through serious PERSECUTION.

2 Thessalonians 2:4 – “Therefore, among God’s churches we boast about your perseverance and faith in all the persecutions and trials you are enduring.”

James 1:12 – “Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.” 

Romans 5:3-4 – “We rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope.”

1 Peter 5:10-11 – “In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus.  So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation.”

Sanctification! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 06/23/2019

Sanctification!

I Thessalonians 5:23-28

June 23rd, 2019 

Verse of the Week 

23 “May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus.”

~ I Thessalonians 5:23

1.    The Lord will continue to SANCTIFY us through and through.

I Thessalonians 5:23 – “May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through…”

I Thessalonians 5:23 – “May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus.”

2 Thessalonians 2:13 – “…Because God chose you as firstfruits to be saved through the sanctifying work of the Spirit and through belief in the truth.”

1 Peter 1:2 – “Who have been chosen according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through the sanctifying work of the Spirit…”

2 Timothy 2:21 – “Those who cleanse themselves from the latter will be instruments for special purposes, made holy, useful to the master and prepared to do any good work.”

I Thessalonians 5:24 – “The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it.”

Philippians 1:6 – “…Being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”

2.    Paul’s closing salutation is full of LOVE and GRACE!

I Thessalonians 5:25 – “Brothers and Sisters, pray for us.”

I Thessalonians 5:26 – “Greet all God’s people with a holy kiss.”

I Thessalonians 5:27 – “I charge you before the Lord to have this letter read to all the brothers and sisters.”

I Thessalonians 5:28 – “The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.”

Ephesians 6:24 – “Grace to all who love our Lord Jesus Christ with an undying love.”

Galatians 6:18 – “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit, brothers and sisters.  Amen.”

2 Corinthians 13:14 – “May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ and the love of God and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.”

Final Instructions! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 06/16/2019

Final Instructions!

I Thessalonians 5:16-22

June 16th, 2019 

Verse of the Week 

16 “Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

~ I Thessalonians 5:16-18

1.    Paul gives us practical and profound INSTRUCTIONS to live in accordance with God’s will.

I Thessalonians 5:16-18 – “Be joyful always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

Philippians 4:4 – “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!”

Colossians 1:12 – “And giving joyful thanks to the Father…”

1 Chronicles 16:34 – “Give thanks to the Lord for he is good; his love endures forever.”

Colossians 4:2 – “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.”

Romans 12:12 – “Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.”

1 Chronicles 16:34 – “Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, his love endures forever.”

Colossians 3:15 – “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace.  And be thankful.”

2.    Be sure not to QUENCH the Spirit!

I Thessalonians 5:19 – “Do not quench the Spirit.”

I Thessalonians 5:20 – “Do not treat prophecies with contempt.”

I Thessalonians 5:21 – “But test them all; hold on to what is good.”

I Thessalonians 5:22 – “Reject every kind of evil.”

Ephesians 4:30 – “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.”

1 John 4:1 – “…Do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.  Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God.  This is the spirit of antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world.”

2 Peter 1:21 – “For prophecy never had its origin in the human will, but prophets, though human, spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit.”

Revelation 19:10 – “For it is the Spirit of prophecy who bears testimony to Jesus.”

Showing Love and Appreciation! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 06/09/2019

Showing Love and Appreciation!

I Thessalonians 5:12-15

June 9th, 2019 

Verse of the Week 

“…Always strive to do what is good for each other and everyone else.”

~ I Thessalonians 5:15

 

1.    Paul instructs us to show APPRECIATION for those who serve Christ.

I Thessalonians 5:12 – “Now we ask you, brothers and sisters, to acknowledge those who work hard among you, who care for you in the Lord and who admonish you.”

I Thessalonians 5:13 – “Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work...”

1 Corinthians 16:15 – “…I urge, you, brothers and sisters, to submit to such people and to everyone who joins in the work and labors at it… For they refreshed my spirit and yours also.  Such men deserve recognition.”

Philippians 1:3-5 – “I thank my God every time I remember you.  In all my prayers for all of you.  I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now.” 

2.    Paul provides a list of instructions on how to TAKE CARE of each other.

I Thessalonians 5:14 – “And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone.”

II Thessalonians 3:6 – “…We command you to keep away from every believer who is idle and disruptive and does not live according to the teaching you received from us.”

Hebrews 3:13 – “Encourage one another daily, as long as it is called, ‘Today,’ so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.”

Isaiah 35:3 – “Encourage the exhausted and strengthen the feeble.”

Romans 15:1 – Now we who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of those without strength not just to please ourselves.”

Ephesians 4:2 – “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.”

3.    Paul urges believers to FORGIVE each other and DO GOOD to everyone.

I Thessalonians 5:15 – “Make sure that nobody pays back wrong for wrong, but always strive to do what is good for each other and for everyone else.”

I Peter 3:9 – “Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult.  On the contrary, repay evil with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing.”

Romans 12:7 – “Do not repay anyone evil for evil.  Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone.”

Ephesians 4:32 – “And be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another, just as God also forgave you in Christ.”

Hebrews 10:24 – “And let us watch out for one another to provoke love and good works.”

The Day Of The Lord! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 06/02/2019

The Day Of The Lord!

I Thessalonians 5:1-11

June 2nd, 2019

Verse of the Week

“Now, brothers, about times and dates we do not need to write to you, for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night.”

~ I Thessalonians 5:1

1.    No one KNOWS the day or the hour when the Lord will return.

I Thessalonians 5:1-2 – “Now, brothers, about times and dates we do not need to write to you for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night.”

I Thessalonians 5:3 – While people are saying, “Peace and safety,” destruction will come on them suddenly, as labor pains on a pregnant woman, and they will not escape.”

2 Peter 3:10 – “But the day of the Lord will come like a thief.  The heavens will disappear with a roar, the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare.”

Matthew 24:36 – “No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven or the Son, but only the Father.” 

2.    But the Day of the Lord should not SURPRISE us. 

I Thessalonians 5:4 – “But you brothers and sisters are not in darkness so that this day should surprise you like a thief.”

Matthew 24:32-33 – “Now learn this lesson from the fig tree.  As soon as its twigs get tender and its leaves come out you know that summer is near.  Even so, when you see all these things, you know that it is near, right at the door.”

1 Thessalonians 5:5 – “You are all children of the light and children of the day.  We do not belong to the night or to the darkness.”

1 Thessalonians 5:6 – “So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep but let us be awake and sober.”

1 Thessalonians 5:8 – “But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet.”

3.    We are not destined to SUFFER God’s wrath but to receive SALVATION and live forever with him.

I Thessalonians 5:9 – “For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

I Thessalonians 5:10 – “He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him.” 

I Thessalonians 5:11 – “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”

The Rapture – Ready Or Not! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 05/26/2019

The Rapture – Ready Or Not!

I Thessalonians 4:13-18

May 26th, 2019

Verse of the Week

“After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air.”

~ I Thessalonians 4:17

1.    Jesus will RESURRECT all those who have died in Christ to be with him forever.

I Thessalonians 4:13 – “Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope.” 

I Thessalonians 4:14 – “For we believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him.”

1 Corinthians 15:54-55 – “Death has been swallowed up in victory.  ‘Where, O death, is your victory?  Where, O death, is your sting?’”

John 14:3 – “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.”

2.    Jesus will raise first those who have FALLEN ASLEEP in Christ.

I Thessalonians 4:15 – “According to the Lord’s word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep.”

I Thessalonians 4:16 – “For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first.”

3.    Then Jesus will also RAISE us to be with him in the air.

I Thessalonians 4:17 – “After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air.  And so, we will be with the Lord forever.”

I Corinthians 15:51-52 – “Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed – in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet.  For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed.”

Hebrews 9:28 – “So Christ having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.”

4.    The rapture will be SUDDEN and could happen at any time!

Luke 12:40 – “You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect.”

Luke 17:34-37 – “I tell you, on that night two people will be in one bed, one will be taken and the other left.  Two women will be grinding grain together; one will be taken and the other left.”

Living To Please God! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 05/19/2019

Living To Please God!

I Thessalonians 4:1-12

May 19th, 2019

Verse of the Week

“Finally, Brothers we instructed you how to live in order to please God, as in fact you are living.”

~ I Thessalonians 4:1

1.    We have an unbelievable privilege to orient our lives to PLEASE God.

I Thessalonians 4:1 – “Finally, Brothers we instructed you how to live in order to please God, as in fact you are living.  Now we ask you and urge you in the Lord Jesus to do this more and more.”

I Thessalonians 4:2 – “For we know what instructions we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus.”

Hebrews 11:5 – “By faith Enoch was taken from this life… For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God.”

Ephesians 5:8-10 – “For you were once in darkness, but now you are light in the Lord.  Live as children of light (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord.”

Romans 12:1 – “I urge you… to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God – this is your true and proper worship.”

2.    God commands us to be PURE and lead HOLY lives.

I Thessalonians 4:3 – “It is God’s will that you should be sanctified: that you should avoid sexual immorality.”

I Thessalonians 4:4-5 – “That each of you should learn to control your own body in a way that is holy and honorable, not in passionate lust like the pagans, who do not know God…”

I Corinthians 6:18-20 – “Flee from sexual immorality.  All other sins a person commits are outside the body, but whoever sins sexually, sins against their own body.  Do you not know that our bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit…?  You are not your own; you were bought at a price.  Therefore honor God with your bodies.”

Colossians 3:5 – “Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature; sexual immorality, impurity, lust, evil desires and greed, which is idolatry.”

I Thessalonians 4:6-7 – “The Lord will punish all those who commit such sins… For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life.”  

I Thessalonians 4:7 – “Therefore anyone who rejects this instruction does not reject a human being but God, the very God who gives you the Holy Spirit.”

3.  Paul encourages us to GROW in our love for one another.

I Thessalonians 4:9 – “Now about your love for one another we do not need to write to you, for you yourselves have been taught by God to love each other.”

I Thessalonians 4:10 – “And in fact, you do love all of God’s family throughout Macedonia.  Yet we urge you, brothers and sisters, to do so more and more…”

I Thessalonians 4:11 – “And to make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business… so that your daily life may win the respect of outsiders…”

Timothy’s Encouraging Report! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 05/12/2019

Timothy’s Encouraging Report!

I Thessalonians Chapter 3

May 12th, 2019

Verse of the Week

“But Timothy has just now come to us from you and has brought good news about your faith and love.”

~ I Thessalonians 3:6

1.    Paul sends Timothy to STRENGTHEN and ENCOURAGE the Thessalonians.

I Thessalonians 3:2 – “We sent Timothy, who is our brother and co-worker in God’s service in spreading the gospel of Christ, to strengthen and encourage you in your faith.”

Hebrews 10:24-25 – “And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”

I Thessalonians 3:3 – “So that no one would be unsettled by these trials.  For you know quite well that we are destined for them.”

I Thessalonians 3:4 – “When we were with you, we kept telling you that we would be persecuted.”

I Thessalonians 3:5 – “For this reason when I could stand it no longer, I sent to find out about your faith.”

2.  Timothy returns with an ENCOURAGING Report.

I Thessalonians 3:6 – “But Timothy has just now come to us from you and has brought good news about your faith and love.  He has told us that you always have pleasant memories of us and that you long to see us, just as we long to see you.”

Romans 1:11-12 – “I long to see you so that I may impart to you some spiritual gift to make you strong that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith.”

I Thessalonians 3:7 – “Therefore, brothers and sisters, in all our distress and persecution we were encouraged about you because of your faith.”

I Thessalonians 3:8 – “For now we really live since you are standing firm in the Lord.”

I Thessalonians 3:9 – “How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy we have in the presence of our God because of you?”

I Thessalonians 3:10 – “Night and day, we pray most earnestly that we may see you again and supply what is lacking in your faith.”

3.    Paul’S BENEDICTION for the Thessalonians.

I Thessalonians 3:11 – “Now may our God and Father himself and our Lord Jesus clear the way for us to come to you.”

I Thessalonians 3:12 – “May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you.”

I Thessalonians 3:13 – “May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones.”

Paul’s Pastoral Heart! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 05/05/2019

Paul’s Longing For The Church!

I Thessalonians 2:13-20

May 5th, 2019

Verse of the Week

“But brothers and sisters, when we were orphaned by being separated from you for a short time… out of our intense longing we made every effort to see you.”

~ I Thessalonians 2:17

1.    The Apostle Paul is thankful for the Thessalonians BELIEF in the Word of God.

I Thessalonians 2:13 – “And we also thank God continually because when you received the word of God… you accepted it not as the word of men but as it actually is, the word of God, which is at work in you who believe.”

2 Timothy 3:16 – “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting, and training in righteousness so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

2.    Paul commends the Thessalonians for IMITATING the churches in Judea.

I Thessalonians 2:14 – “For you brothers became imitators of God’s churches in Judea, which are in Christ Jesus…”

I Thessalonians 2:14-15 – “You suffered from your own countrymen the same things those churches suffered from the Jews, who killed the Lord Jesus and the prophets and also drove us out.”

Matthew 5:11 – “Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.  Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven…”

3.    Paul condemns those who PERSECUTE the Church of Christ.

I Thessalonians 2:15-16 – “They displease God and are hostile to everyone in their effort to keep us speaking to the Gentiles so that they may be saved.”

I Thessalonians 2:16 – “…In this way they always heap up their sins to the limit.  The wrath of God has come on them at last.”

4.    Paul has a tremendous LONGING to see the Thessalonians again.

I Thessalonians 2:17 – “But, brothers, when we were torn away from you for a short time (in person not in thought), out of our intense longing we made every effort to see you.”

I Thessalonians 2:18 – “For we wanted to come to you… again and again, but Satan stopped us.”

Daniel 10:12-13 – “…An angel came to Daniel in response to his prayer but the angel was delayed for 21 days by a powerful evil spirit.”

I Thessalonians 2:19-20 – “For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes?  Is it not you?  Indeed, you are our glory and joy.”

Daniel 12:3 – “Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever.”

Paul’s Pastoral Heart! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 04/28/2019

Paul’s Pastoral Heart!

I Thessalonians 2:1-12

April 28th, 2019

Verse of the Week

“We loved you so much that we were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well…” ~ I Thessalonians 2:8

1.    The apparent FAILURE of Paul was actually a great VICTORY for the Lord.

I Thessalonians 2:1-2 – “You know brothers and sisters, that our visit to you was not without results.  We had previously suffered and been treated outrageously in Philippi, but with the help of our God we dared to tell you the gospel in the face of strong opposition.” 

Colossians 2:15 – “And having disarmed the powers and authorities, he made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them by the cross.”

Hebrews 11:32-40 – Records a litany of abuses, persecution, and killing of Christians, which were all tremendous successes in God’s kingdom. 

2.    Out of his love for others, Paul boldly PROCLAIMS the gospel with pure motives and no matter what the cost.

I Thessalonians 2:3-4 – “For the appeal we make does not spring from error or impure motive nor are we trying to trick you.  On the contrary we speak as men approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel.”

I Thessalonians 2:4 – “We are not trying to please men but God who tests our hearts.”

I Thessalonians 2:5-6 – “You know we never used flattery, nor did we put on a mask to cover up greed…  We were not looking for praise from men, not from you or anyone else.”

3.    Paul’s LOVE for the flock shines through in his tender caring approach with the Church.

I Thessalonians 2:7 – “As apostles of Christ, we could have been a burden to you but we were gentle among you, like a mother caring for her children.”

I Corinthians 9:22 – “To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews… to the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some.”

I Thessalonians 2:8 – “We loved you so much that were delighted to share with you not only the gospel of God but our lives as well, because you had become so dear to us.”

Jeremiah 3:15 – “Then I will give you shepherds after my own heart, who will lead you with knowledge and understanding.”

I Thessalonians 2:9 – “Surely you remember brothers our toil and hardship, we worked night and day in order not to be a burden to anyone while we preached the gospel of God to you.”

I Thessalonians 2:10-12 – “You are witnesses of how holy, righteous and blameless we were among you who believed.  For you know that we dealt with each of you as a father deals with his own children, encouraging, comforting and urging you to live lives worthy of God, who calls you into his kingdom and glory.”

From Death To Life! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 04/21/2019

From Death To Life!

John 28:1-18

April 21st, 2019

Verse of the Week

“Jesus said to her, ‘ I am the resurrection and the life.  He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?’” ~ John 11:25

1.    The cross of Jesus, his agonizing death, speaks to us of his great SACRIFICE and great LOVE for us.

Isaiah 53:5-6 – “But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him and by his wounds we are healed.  We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.”

John 15:13 – “Greater love has no one than this, that he lay down his life for his friends.”

2.    The focus of Good Friday is the death of Jesus; the focus of Easter is the celebration of Christ’s RESURRECTION.

John 20:1-9 – Mary Magdalene and the disciples find that the tomb is empty.

John 20:10-18 – Jesus appears to Mary Magdalene in person. 

1 Corinthians 15:55-57 – “Where, O death, is your victory?  Where, O death, is your sting?  The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.  But thanks be to God!  He gives us the victory through the Lord Jesus Christ.” 

3.    Christ’s death and resurrection brings  RECONCILIATION and HOPE

Ephesians 2:12-13 – ‘… at that time you were separate from Christ, excluded from citizenship in Israel and foreigners to the covenant of the promise, without hope and without God in the world.  But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far away have been brought near through the blood of Christ.” 

Romans 6:4-5 – “We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may life a new life.  If we have been united with him like this in his death, we will certainly also be united with him in his resurrection.” 

4.    Jesus is the RESURRECTION and the LIFE

John 11:25-27 – “Jesus said to her, ‘I am the resurrection and the life.  He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.  Do you believe this?’  “Yes, Lord,’ she told him.  I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who was to come in to the world.”

Hosannah In The Highest! * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 04/14/2019

Hosannah In The Highest!

Matthew 21:1-14

April 14th, 2019

1.    Jesus’ TRIUMPHAL entry into Jerusalem is accompanied by throngs of people worshiping Him and shouting “Hosanna in the Highest!”

This event is recorded in all 4 of the gospels:  Matthew 21:1-14, Mark 11:1-11, Luke 19:28-44, and John 12:3-19.

Matthew 21:8 – “A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road.  The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted… “Hosanna in the Highest!”

2.    The time had come for Jesus to reveal his true IDENTITY. He came to present himself as the King of the Jews, as the Messiah.                                                                                        

Matthew 21:3-4 – Jesus comes into Jerusalem riding on a donkey in fulfillment of scripture.

Zechariah 9:9-10 – “Rejoice greatly, O Daughter of Zion!…  See your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation,  gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of donkey… He will proclaim peace to the nations.  His rule will extend from sea to sea and from the River (Euphrates)  to the ends of the Earth.”

Matthew 21:9 – “Hosanna to the Son of David!”  This is a clear reference to the Messiah who would come from David’s lineage and sit on his throne forever.

3.    Jesus came in PEACE 2000 years ago as the King of Kings to save the people and deliver them from their sin and he still comes in peace today.

Matthew 21:9 – “Hosanna in the highest!”

Hosanna literally means “Save us now!”  The term Hosanna refers to the salvation and the deliverance of the Jewish people.  It is a joyful expression coupled with huge expectation.

Based on all the miracles they had witnessed and the profound teachings of Jesus for several years, the people hoped that he was the Anointed One, the one who could save them and bring them peace.

Jesus is the one and only King of Kings and he is still inviting everyone to come and enjoy the eternal peace that only comes from embracing him for who he truly is – our Lord and Savior.

Thank you Lord Jesus!  “Hosanna in the Highest!”

Thankfulness For The Church * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 03/24/2019

Thankfulness For The Church

I Thessalonians Chapter 1

March 24th, 2019

1.    Paul is extremely THANKFUL for the local CHURCH.

1 Thessalonians 1:2 – “We always thank God for all of you, mentioning you in our prayers.”

1 Corinthians 1:4 – “I always thank God for you because of his grace given you in Christ Jesus.”

1 Thessalonians 1:3 – “We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.”

1 Thessalonians 1:4 – “For we know, brothers and sisters loved by God, that he has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not simply with words but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and deep conviction.”

2.    Paul is thankful for the TESTIMONY of the church.                                                                                                           

1 Thessalonians 1:6 – “You became imitators of us and of the Lord, in spite of severe suffering, you welcomed the message with joy given by the Holy Spirit.”

1 Corinthians 11:1 – “Follow my example as I follow the example of Christ.”

Ephesians 5:1-2 – “Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children, and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God, as a fragrant aroma.”

1 Thessalonians 1:7 – “And so you became a model to all the believers in Macedonia and Achaia.”

3.    The testimony of the Church is marked by a remarkable FAITH in God, 

 a complete change in WORSHIP and BEHAVIOR and an unwavering HOPE in our Savior and His return.

1 Thessalonians 1:8 – “…your faith in God has become known everywhere.”

Acts 4:20 – “For we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard.”

1 Thessalonians 1:9-10 – “…They tell how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead – Jesus who rescues us from the coming wrath.”

2 Corinthians 5:17 – “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation.  The old has passed away and behold the new has come.”

Titus 2:13-14 – “While we wait for the blessed hope – the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good.”

Overview of I Thessalonians * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 03/10/2019

Overview of I Thessalonians

I Thessalonians

March 10th, 2019

1.    Background: Paul planted the CHURCH in Thessalonica during this 2nd missionary journey and he was forced to leave Thessalonica under duress. (Acts 17:1-10)

Out of concern for the young Church, Paul sent Timothy to check up on them and also to help encourage them.  (I Thessalonians Ch 3)

Timothy came back with an excellent report:  the believers were remaining faithful to the gospel.                          (I Thessalonians Ch 3)

Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians is considered his very first epistle and most scholars believe that Paul wrote the letter in 52 A.D. (Raymond E. Brown, An Introduction to the New Testament, Anchor Bible, 1997, pp. 456-466)

2.    Key Themes: Jesus is the source of our HOPE and his future RETURN motivates us to live godly lives.

Jesus is our hope - the savior who rescues us from the coming wrath of God.  (I Thessalonians 1:10)

 Paul’s thankfulness for the Church he planted at Thessalonica.  (I Thessalonians 1:2)

Paul’s pastoral heart and concern for the Thessalonians.  (I Thessalonians Ch 2)

Paul’s admonition for holy living.  (I Thessalonians Ch 4)

The rapture and the return of Christ. (I Thessalonians Ch 4 – 5)

“For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. Therefore encourage one another with these words.” (I Thessalonians 4:16-18)

Joshua's Legacy * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 03/03/2019

Joshua’s Legacy

Joshua 24:29-33

March 3rd, 2019

1.    Joshua dies and is buried in the PROMISED LAND.

Joshua 24:29 – “After these things, Joshua, son of Nun, the servant of the Lord, died at the age of a hundred and ten.”

Joshua 24:30 – “And they buried him in the land of his inheritance, at Timnath Serah in the hill country of Ephraim, north of Mount Gaash.”

2.    There are important parallels between Joshua and JOSEPH.

Genesis 50:22 – Joseph stayed in Egypt along with all his father’s family.  He lived a hundred and ten years.

Genesis 50:24 – “Then Joseph said to his brothers, ‘I am about to die.  But God will surely come to your aid and take you up out of this land to the land he promised on oath to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.’  And Joseph made the Israelites swear an oath and said, ‘God will surely come to your aid, and then you must carry my bones up from this place.’”

Joshua 24:32 – “And Joseph’s bones which the Israelites had brought up from Egypt, were buried at Shechem in the tract of land that Jacob bought for a hundred pieces of silver from the sons of Hamar, the father of Shechem.  This became the inheritance of Joseph’s descendants.”

3.    Joshua and Eleazar have a very special LEGACY unto the Lord.

Joshua 24:31 – “Israel served the Lord throughout the lifetime of Joshua and of the elders who outlived him and who had experienced everything the Lord had done for Israel.”

Joshua 24:33 – “And Eleazar son of Aaron died and was buried at Gibeah, which had been allotted to his son Phinehas in the hill country of Ephraim.”  He was the second High Priest of Israel after his father Aaron.

Joshua 24:6-7 – “When your children ask in time to come, saying, ‘What do these stories mean to you?’  Then you shall answer them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the Lord; when it crossed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off.  And these stones shall be for a memorial to the children of Israel forever.”

2 Timothy 4:7-8 – “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store  for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, will reward to me on that day; and not to me only but also to all who have longed for his appearing.” 



Choose This Day * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 2/24/2019

Choose This Day

Joshua 24

February 24th, 2019

1.    God wants us to make a CHOICE to take a PUBLIC stand for Him.

Joshua 24:1 – Joshua assembled all the tribes at Shechem.  He summoned the elders, leaders, judges and officials of Israel, and they presented themselves before God.

Joshua 24:2-13 – Joshua provides a recap of their entire history from Abraham to the conquest of Canaan.

Joshua 24:14 – “Now fear the Lord and serve him with all faithfulness.  Throw away the gods your ancestors worshiped beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt, and serve the Lord.”

Joshua 24:15 – “Then choose for yourselves this day whom you will serve… but as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”

Matthew 16:15-16 – Then Jesus asks his disciples, “But what about you?... Who do you say that I am?  Simon Peter answered, ‘You are the Messiah, the Son of the Living God.’”

Acts 7:55-56 – “But Stephen full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God.  ‘Look,” he said, ‘I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.”

2.    The Israelites follow Joshua’s lead and take a STAND for the Lord.

Joshua 24:16 – “Far be it from us to forsake the Lord to serve other gods.”

Joshua 24:19-20 – “Joshua said to the people, ‘You are not able to serve the Lord.  He is a holy God; he is a jealous God.  He will not forgive your rebellion and your sin.  If you forsake the Lord and serve foreign gods, he will turn and bring disaster on you and make an end of you, after he has been good to you.’”

Joshua 24:21 – “But the people said to Joshua, ‘No!  We will serve the Lord.’”

Psalm 100:2 – “Serve the Lord with gladness, come before Him with joyful singing.”

3.    Joshua establishes the COVENANT for the people at Shechem.

Joshua 24:22 – “Then Joshua said, ‘You are witnesses against yourselves that you have chosen to serve the Lord.’”

Joshua 24:25 – “On that day, Joshua made a covenant for the people and there at Shechem, he reaffirmed for them decrees and laws.”

Joshua 24:6 – “And Joshua recorded these things in the Book of the Law of God.  Then he took a large stone and set it up there under the oak near the holy place of the Lord.”

Joshua 24:8 – “Then Joshua dismissed the people, each to their own inheritance.”

 

 

God Fulfills His Promises * Pastor Jerry Ghirardo * 2/17/2019

God Fulfills His Promises

Joshua 23

February 17th, 2019

1.   God FIGHTS for us.

Joshua 23:3 – “You yourselves have seen everything the Lord your God has done to all these nations for your sake.  It was the Lord your God who fought for you.”

Joshua 23:5 – “The Lord himself will drive them out of your way.  He will push them out before you and you will take possession of their land, as the Lord your God promised you.”

Joshua 23:9-10 – “The Lord has driven out before you great and powerful nations; to this day no one has been able to withstand you.  One of you routs a thousand, because the Lord your God fights for you, just as he promised.”

Joshua 1:5 – “No man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life.  Just as I was with Moses, so I will be with you.  I will not leave you or forsake you.”

2.    Be strong, study God’s Word and OBEY all his commands.

Joshua 23:6 – “Be very strong.  Be careful to obey all that is written in the Book of the Law of Moses without turning aside to the right or the left.”

Joshua 1:7 – “Be strong and very courageous.  Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go.”

Joshua 23:7 – “Do not associate with these nations… do not invoke the names of their gods or swear by them… But you are to hold fast to the Lord your God, as you have until now.”

Joshua 23:10 – “So be very careful to love the Lord your God.”

Joshua 23:12 – “Don’t turn away and ally yourselves with the survivors of these nations… Don’t intermarry … otherwise they will become a snare and a trap for you…until you perish from this good land.”

3.    God always FULFILLS his promises.

Joshua 23:14 – “You know with all your heart and soul that not one of all the good promises the Lord God gave you has failed… Every promise has been fulfilled.”

Joshua 21:43-45 – “So the Lord gave Israel all the land he had sworn to give their forefathers, and they took possession of it and settled there.  The Lord gave them rest on every side, just as he had sworn to their forefathers.  Not one of their enemies withstood them; the Lord handed all their enemies  over to them.  Not one of all the Lord’s good promises to the house of Israel failed; every one was fulfilled.”

Lamentations 2:17 – “The Lord has done what he planned; he has fulfilled his word; which he decreed long ago.”

Jeremiah 1:12 – “The Lord said to me, ‘You have seen correctly, for I am watching to see that my word is fulfilled.’”