Death has been conquered

Death is an intruder in our lives and relationships, leaving gaping holes and hardships. It is an enemy that seems insurmountable.

Left to our own resources, we have very little to say, very few answers to contribute.

Our world is left confused and its inability to answer the question of death shows a hollowness in its answers to the questions of life.

And this is exactly how the followers of Jesus would have felt on that first Easter weekend. Death had taken their teacher, their friend, their Lord.

But this death was unlike any other. This was not another victim of death’s relentless dominion over us.

In Jesus’ death was God’s decisive victory: it was part of his plan.

For Jesus was delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, to be crucified by the hands of lawless men. But, God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it (Acts 2:23).

God is not silent in the face of death.

Christ has been raised from the dead, as the Apostle triumphantly states in 1 Corinthians 15, and it continues with a promise to us all. “Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who have fallen asleep” (1 Cor 15:20).

It is a promise that we too will be raised up with Christ.

However it is a promise that may at times sit on the shelves of our hearts gathering dust. But it is a promise that cannot stay there for long.

It is too important. It is too relevant. For we live in a world marred by death.

Jesus resurrection is God’s proclamation, his loud and triumphant announcement. Death has been conquered.

“Death is swallowed up in victory.
O death, where is your victory?
O death, where is your sting?”  (1 Corinthians 15:54-55)

Simon Chaplin

Coming up Good Friday and Easter Weekend 2017

We’d love you to join us at church this Easter.

Our Good Friday service is at the special time of 9.30am, where we’ll be coming together to reflect on the worse sin ever as Graham Errington talks from Luke chapter 22 verses 1 to 23.

We’ll be meeting at our normal times of 5pm on Saturday and 8am on Easter Sunday. Jodie will be speaking on the topic ‘The right side of history’ from Acts chapter 13 verses 16 to 41.

During our services on Saturday and Sunday, we’ll have our weekly question and answer time, and Jodie will be answering these questions:

  1. How could Jesus die since God is immortal?
  2. If God still speaks today, why doesn’t the Bible get updated like the prayer book gets updated to reflect modern changes?
  3. Since God chooses some people and not others, what about the verse that says God is not willing that anyone should perish?
  4. If singleness is a gift, then why do single people struggle to be content?
  5. How long did Lazarus live for after Jesus raised him from the dead?
  6. What are the differences between the Sadducees and the Pharisees in the Bible?

If you don’t regularly attend church then you are especially welcome this weekend. We love it when people drop in to join us at church, and you’ll be made to feel very much at home.

If you can’t make it in person, you’re welcome to jump online to watch the service (with the same sermon and many other items) at www.oakflats.tv.

We wish you a special Easter as we reflect on the wonder of the cross and the miracle of the empty tomb!

Church news for the week beginning 8th April 2017

This weekend’s Bible Talk

This weekend we welcome Simon Chaplin, who will be talking on the topic ‘God’s perfect plan ‘ from John chapter 11 verses 45 to 53.

Mission of the month: Anglicare

Anglicare is our mission of the month. Support this ministry through the ‘Mission Table’ in the Hall.

Good Friday Service

Join us at 9.30am for a special Good Friday service on Friday 14th April, with Graham Errington speaking. We’ll be meeting at our normal times of 5pm on Saturday and 8am on Easter Sunday.

Ladies Dinner

You’re invited to join the ladies of Oak Flats and beyond on Tuesday 19th April to hear Kate Stace. Dinner is $7 payable at the door, and there is no need to RSVP.

Children’s and youth programs in holidays

During school holidays our normal midweek children’s and youth programs take a break until 28th April. However we plan to continue a mini-program during the 5pm Saturday service as required.

Emergency Cyclone Debbie Appeal

Anglican Aid has launched an appeal to help those affected by Cyclone Debbie in Queensland and NSW. For more information or to donate please visit anglicanaid.org.au or call (02) 9284 1406.

Giving update

Each week we need to receive $5900.00 in order to meet our commitments. In the last calendar month, our average weekly giving was $5560.00, leaving a gap of $340.00.

Olimometer 2.52

Up to the end of the last calendar month we needed to have received $25,567. Compared to that total we received $24,095, leaving a gap of $1,472.

Olimometer 2.52

Electronic giving is a great way to give! It helps us prayerfully plan our giving, and then the bank will help us keep that commitment, even when we may be unable to attend. To give by direct transfer then these are the details. Account name: Church of England Jamberoo. Account number: 10081274. BSB: 062562 .

Christian persecution is growing

persecution

Last year was the worst year on record for persecution of Christians worldwide.

According to ‘Open Doors,’ each month 332 were killed for their faith, 772 suffered serious violence and 214 churches were destroyed.

Once there was a network of Christian churches spreading east from Jerusalem through “Mesopotamia” and on into India.

Though not recorded in the NT, this missionary spread eastwards from Jerusalem must have started very early. When Marco Polo reached the court of Kublai Khan in 1266 in nowadays “Peking,” he was surprised to meet Christians there.

We sometimes forget that Christianity is a Middle Eastern (i.e. Asian) religion, that Jesus was a Jew, and Paul a Syrian or maybe a Turk. Armenia was the first ever officially Christian nation.

The buildings of the Eastern Christians in those early days typically had gold-painted domes on the roof, and this is no doubt the origin of the domes on mosques, since the churches were simply converted into mosques as Islam displaced the Christians.

And this process is being implemented in a vicious manner today.

Jakarta’s Christian governor Basuki Ahok is on trial for blasphemy for “insulting” the Koran. There are few who cannot see this as an attempt to bring a Christian leader down by any method that might work.

Coptic Christian Bahgat Zakhar, 58, refused to deny Jesus before being gunned down in cold blood in the Sinai region.

We can recall that these following words of Jesus apply to us as well as our persecuted brothers and sisters, “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you” (Matthew 5:43-44.)

Hard though it be to love organisations like ISIS, we should pray for their change of heart.

We should find ways to identify with persecuted Christians for as Jesus said, “I was in prison and you came to visit me… truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me” (Matthew 25:36 & 40.)

Graham 

Coming up this weekend 8th – 9th April 2017

This weekend we welcome Simon Chaplin, who will be talking on the topic ‘God’s perfect plan ‘ from John chapter 11 verses 45 to 53.

We will also share the Lord’s Supper at 5pm Saturday, so be sure to join us for this important reminder of the death of Jesus.

Our 8am Sunday service will be a Holy Communion First Order AAPB service.

During our service, we’ll have our weekly question and answer time, and Jodie will be answering these questions:

  1. How should we be impacted by the fact that the Reformers fought and died to give us the Bible and church in our everyday language?
  2. Why does God choose to save some people but not others?
  3. When God says he’s a jealous God, doesn’t that mean he’s sinning?
  4. Before the Great Flood, how was the world different to today?
  5. Should a Christian date a non-Christian?
  6. How should single people live in a godly way?
  7. How should a person choose the right church?

If you’re wanting to check out our church we’d really love you to visit us on Saturday at 5pm for a contemporary service with kids’ program and dinner afterwards, or come along on Sunday at 8am for a Prayer Book service.

Church news for the week beginning 1st April 2017

This weekend’s Bible Talk

This weekend we welcome our own Mark Howard, who will be speaking on the topic ‘Effective and Productive in the Knowledge of Jesus’ from 2 Peter chapter 1 verses 1 to 15.

Next week’s Bible Talk

Next week we welcome Simon Chaplin, who will be talking on the topic ‘God’s perfect plan ‘ from John chapter 11 verses 45 to 53.

Mission of the month: Anglicare

Anglicare is our mission of the month. Support this ministry through the ‘Mission Table’ in the Hall.

Men’s Dinner

You’re invited to join the men of Oak Flats and beyond this Tuesday 4th April to hear Matthew Meek at the Central Hotel, Shellharbour. RSVP via the comment card or 0439 561 373 or email mensdinner@oakflatsanglican.com.

Dinner at the Bowlo

Join us this Thursday at 6pm at the Jamberoo Bowling Club for a relaxed meal together at the ‘Wok and Grill’ restaurant, for great steaks, tasty Chinese, and lots of laughs.

Parish Council

We give thanks to God for our new Parish Council, and thank Annette Gibson for agreeing to join as the nominee of the Senior Minister.

New Rosters

New rosters are out now. If you need a paper version, grab one from the information table, or otherwise log onto www.jamberooanglican.net to see what dates and roles you are scheduled for.

Good Friday Service

Join us at 9.30am for a special Good Friday service on Friday 14th April, with Graham Errington speaking. We’ll be meeting at our normal times of 5pm on Saturday and 8am on Easter Sunday.

Giving update

Each week we need to receive $5900.00 in order to meet our commitments. In the last calendar month, our average weekly giving was $5560.00, leaving a gap of $340.00.

Olimometer 2.52

Up to the end of the last calendar month we needed to have received $25,567. Compared to that total we received $24,095, leaving a gap of $1,472.

Olimometer 2.52

Electronic giving is a great way to give! It helps us prayerfully plan our giving, and then the bank will help us keep that commitment, even when we may be unable to attend. To give by direct transfer then these are the details. Account name: Church of England Jamberoo. Account number: 10081274. BSB: 062562 .

Are you responsible with your power?

The crown of the king (CREDIT: Jason Train via Flickr)

Did you know that God has made us responsible for ruling the world?

In the book of Psalms, God’s people say to him,

“…what is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them? You have made them a little lower than the angels and crowned them with glory and honour. You made them rulers over the works of your hands; you put everything under their feet:” (Psalm 8:4-6)

The Lord is king over the universe, and he’s put humans in charge of Planet Earth and beyond.

This is why humans have the authority to make decisions about animals and the environment.

God has given us this charge to rule everything under his command, and this is why a Biblical worldview has humans at the focal point of all decisions.

Yet, with much power comes much responsibility!

It is within our divinely-delegated power to do anything we like to our environment and to treat animals in any way we wish, but, God will hold us accountable for the decisions we make, as we rule his world under his kingship.

And at the heart of our leadership must be servanthood.

For, if we want to see what perfect human rule looks like, we should consider how Jesus rules.

His greatest act of leadership was not to set himself up as a powerful and dominant ruler.

Instead, his ultimate act of kingship was giving his life for the humans under his rule, so that he might taste death for those of us who obey his call to repent and believe in him.

Jesus’ death is an example of how to rule and serve, but most importantly, his death brings his people renewal by the Holy Spirit, so that we might lead with love.

How will this change the way you rule the world?

Jodie

Coming up this weekend 1st – 2nd April 2017

This weekend we welcome our own Mark Howard who will speak to us on the topic of  ‘Effective and Productive in the Knowledge of Jesus’ from 2 Peter chapter 1 verses 1 to 15.

Our 8am Sunday service will be a Morning Prayer AAPB service.

If you’re wanting to check out our church we’d really love you to visit us on Saturday at 5pm for a contemporary service with kids’ program and dinner afterwards, or come along on Sunday at 8am for a Prayer Book service.

If you can’t make it in person, you’re welcome to jump online to watch the service (with the same sermon and many other items) at www.oakflats.tv.

Church news for the week beginning 25th March 2017

This weekend’s Bible Talk

This weekend Jodie concludes our series looking at the Five Solas of the Reformation, with the next talk titled  ‘For the glory of God alone’.

Next week’s Bible Talk

Next week we welcome our own Mark Howard, who will be talking on the topic ‘Effective and Productive in the Knowledge of Jesus’ from 2 Peter chapter 1 verses 1 to 15.

Mission of the month: Anglicare

Anglicare is our mission of the month. Support this ministry through the ‘Mission Table’ in the Hall.

Annual General Meeting

We give thanks to God for our new office holders in 2017. Our Wardens are Robert Curll, Trevor Lucas and James Rosten. Our Parish Counsellors are Pauline Swan, Nick Calhau and Paul Massey (with one more still to be nominated by the Rector). Our Synod Representative is Pauline Swan.

Jamberoo Interchurch Service

Join with fellow church-goers around our village and valley in our quarterly inter-church service. Sunday 26th March 7pm at St Matthew’s Catholic Church.

Weekendaway is next week!

Sunday 26th March is the very last day to register for next weekend’s church holiday on 31st March to 2nd April at Waterslea, near Nowra. We need to tell Youthworks our numbers by Monday morning. Please do everything you can to join us, as it’s set to be a very special time away. Peter Jensen has prepared some terrific talks on the topic ‘Being Human’, and we’re praying that God will feed us in a powerful way as the Word is preached. For the Saturday night you will need to dress up as your favourite book or movie character. 

Remember – if you can’t afford to pay, we have people who will subsidise your fees. Money has already been given, so please come and join us! And if you need to pay us later, that’s fine, too!

Men’s Dinner

You’re invited to join the men of Oak Flats and beyond on Tuesday 4th April to hear Matthew Meek at the Central Hotel, Shellharbour. RSVP via the comment card or 0439 561 373.

New Rosters

New rosters are out now. If you need a paper version, grab one from the information table, or otherwise log onto www.jamberooanglican.net to see what dates and roles you are scheduled for.

 

Giving update

Each week we need to receive $5900.00 in order to meet our commitments. In the last calendar month, our average weekly giving was $5560.00, leaving a gap of $340.00.

Olimometer 2.52

Up to the end of the last calendar month we needed to have received $25,567. Compared to that total we received $24,095, leaving a gap of $1,472.

Olimometer 2.52

Electronic giving is a great way to give! It helps us prayerfully plan our giving, and then the bank will help us keep that commitment, even when we may be unable to attend. To give by direct transfer then these are the details. Account name: Church of England Jamberoo. Account number: 10081274. BSB: 062562 .

The best weekend ever?

Join us at Waterslea next weekend!

When I was nine years old I was invited to a Christian holiday camp by a friend from school.

It turned out that my friend, Julian, was a regular, churchgoing Christian, and he reached out to me to invite me to join him for a week of horse riding, canoeing and even air guns (back in the day!)

I still remember the campfire, the awesome leaders, and even the potatoes we peeled in the kitchen.

But what I’ll never forget was the message of the speaker about how to become friends with Jesus.

And at that camp I remember asking Jesus to forgive me and to let me follow him all my life.

Camps are a very special place to know Jesus and experience his love in a special community of believers.

Next weekend, our church is going away for a whole weekend together, to live, learn, love and laugh.

And we are set to be greatly blessed by the teaching of Peter Jensen, as he opens up God’s word to us in a practical and powerful way.

Peter’s four talks are, ‘The Birth of Culture,’ ‘The Gift of Community,’ ‘The Promise of Justice,’ and ‘The Power of Words.’

If you’ve never been on a church camp or weekendaway before, then there’s still time to join us.

And if you’ve been before, you’ll know that it’s an occasion not to be missed.

If you’re short of time, money, or transport, then there are ways to get you along.

But whatever you do, don’t pass up this opportunity to be with people of all ages and stages, from both Oak Flats and Jamberoo Anglican Churches, as together we meet Jesus, clothed in his word, present by his Holy Spirit, bringing glory to God.

See you there, God willing!

Jodie