Message for July 31, 2016 from Pastor Jerry

“….They wandered in deserts and mountains, in dens and caves of the earth.” Heb. 11:38

        There has been a lot of talk about caves in the last two days during Kid’s Camp.  You have found yourself in the atmosphere of one this morning when you came to church.  Caves can be different things for people.  One may see caves as a place of fear and danger while another sees them as a place of safety and protection.  Mankind has used caves for thousands of years as a place of safety and shelter.  We live in cave country and there are at least four within a mile of my house.  I have been in all of them except one.  Due to the nature of that cave I was afraid to try it out.  I am not sure if anyone knows of its existence except a cousin and me.  My message today is “Which cave are you living in and why?”

        There are numerous scriptures that refer to caves.  The references are from Genesis to Revelation and from pleasure to fear.  Would you be comfortable living in a cave?  You may enjoy visiting one, but would you want to be a permanent resident?  That was the fate of many followers of Jesus in the early years of Christianity.  They knew they were people wanted by the authorities.  They were willing to give up everything to continue as followers of “The Way” as they were called by others.

        Today “church people” are ready to quit if they are talked about or made fun of.  Many places in the world today Christians are still following Jesus under penalty of death or prison.  The Lord provides for their safety in these kinds of situations and never forsakes them.  Deliverance from death or prison does not always happen, but those around them are faithful to “keep on keeping on” trusting in the Lord.  Many of the early apostles and disciples died at a young age not from “natural causes” but as martyrs giving their lives to keep their relationship with Jesus.  The pagans never celebrated the death of Christians but they celebrated when a person renounced Christ to save their life.  How much are we willing to give up and die for Christ?  I believe if one will not live for Jesus, they certainly will not die for Him.

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