Are You grateful for the things God have revealed unto you?

And Jesus answered and said unto him. Blessed art thou Simon Barjona; for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven 

The Apostle Paul spoke about the fact that in his youth, when he was a child, He conducted himself as a child. However now that he was older he put away those childish things. Regardless of our age, color or creed, there are seasons in our lives that will suggest through divine guidance the path or direction we should take. When God reveals his truth unto each believer it is designed to loose them in that season. Has God revealed any  biblical truth unto you, how did you respond? "Are you grateful for the things God has revealed unto you?     

The book according to Mark's gospel, reveals Jesus asking his disciples who did men and who did they say that he was? After many of them gave incorrect answers, it was Peter who correctly stated, "thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God! Jesus, advised all that were present and every believer that divine knowledge cannot be found in books, or in hearing from other humans, but rather the knowledge that Peter had about Jesus could have only come from God the Father!. There are many biblical truths we know today that we did not comprehend earlier on our Christian journey. 

Yes, your faith has grown, your spirit man has grown and your willingness to serve has grown, not out of your own will but because of the will of the Father. He has pressed you into a greater knowledge and understanding of Him in this season of your life. ""Are you grateful for the things God has revealed unto you?

Pastor SP Courtney

Being Blessed puts you above the rest!

Blessings are on the head of the righteous, but violence covers the mouth of the wicked. The memory of the righteous is blessed, but the name of the wicked will rot. The wise in heart accept commandments, but a chattering fool will fall.  (Proverbs 10:6-8)

It is not about arrogance, or pride, it is not about being superior or necessarily successful, but it is about knowing that you are blessed. Most believers greet each other in passing by asking how are you, and then responding I am blessed.  Even when departing, well wishes are verbalized by saying "Stay blessed. However, when life happens does every believer remember how blessed they really are. "Being blessed puts you above the rest!    

The book of Proverbs chapter 10, Solomon is encouraging the righteous by expressing that over the course of our lives being righteous equates to being blessed. That just living a life where we seek the kingdom of God and His righteousness reduces or removes violence from our path. The reputation of a person who walks by faith, and lives in the will of God, according to the book of Acts, they will find favor with God and man! Yet, those who dwell in wickedness will live under a reputation of IL repute.   

Have you examined yourself? Have you considered how others see you and whether or not you are truly blessed. Do you have enough wisdom to listen, learn and let Christ lead you? If who you are, is representative of whose you are, then your good days will always out way your bad days..

We are the church, the ecclesia, the blessed of the Lord. Because of who he is we are blessed. "Being Blessed puts you above the rest!

Pastor SP Courtney

Are You Praying for Godly Understanding?:

And thy servant is in the midst of thy people which thou hast chosen a great people, that cannot be numbered nor counted for multitude. Give therefore thy servant an understanding heart to judge thy people, that I may discern between good and bad: for who is able to judge this thy so great a people? (1st KINGS 3:8-9)

There are many who say they have good understanding, however it is my humble opinion that in the kingdom of God our prayer must elevate from good understanding to Godly understanding. In a society where churches are being burned and innocent people gun downed in their place of worship. A time when terrorist can access the minds of confused and misguided men and women and with evil and hateful rhetoric influence them to commit acts of violence against innocent citizens, while taking their on lives. How do we reason, how do we rationalize, how do we raise children when even our good understanding cannot comprehend these monstrosities. Our future, our destiny will only be reached when we see things God's way!  "Are You Praying for Godly Understanding?    

Solomon understood his inadequacies and realized that he could not deal with the world around him thinking and reasoning like everyone else. Human understanding would fail him but divine wisdom would allow him to not only be righteous but to lead others to righteousness. Whatever challenges in any of our tomorrows, will require Godly understanding in order to operate in the will of God. In order to have Godly understanding we must do like Solomon and seek God for it! Bethlehemites are You Praying for Godly Understanding?:

Pastor SP Courtney

Do You take Your Freedom for granted?:

For brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an occasion to the flesh, but by love serve one another . (Galatians 5:13)

As born again believers, the scriptures assures us that we have been redeemed from death, sin and the grave. That we the children of God have been granted a free gifts that gives us access to eternal life. Our ticket on the glory train was purchased for us, all we have to do is believe and get on board. However, the concern for the 21st century  Christian is whether or not this concept of a free gift is being misrepresented in our actions and our attitude. Ask yourself, "Do You take Your freedom for granted?   

The Apostle Paul is attempting to get the Galatian believers back on track as they who are new in the faith were slipping back into Judaism and those who were gentiles were going back to the traditions of their false gods. Paul wanted them to understand that they could stand on the liberty of their salvation, which was in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Paul expressed however his concern for the church because of those who were among them that wanted them to follow the law or other traditions as a part of their Christian faith. Specifically there were those saying they could have no part in Christ if they were not circumcised. Paul emphasized that nothing in or by the flesh had a part in their liberty.

Remember to be careful not to fall into the traditions of men, or hypocritical practices that have no spiritual influence. We must walk by faith, following the spirit and the word of God. We have freedom only to trust the spirit of God, and it will guide our spirit to do the perfect will of God!

Pastor SP Courtney

Are You Ready and Willing to Press On?

Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:13-14)

Greetings to all Bethlehemites past and present, on this glorious day in the Lord. God has truly been good to us and for that we are eternally grateful. This congregation has been doing Kingdom work for 144 years and if the saints of old dating back to our founders who were former slaves, down through the years to Professor Holford, Deacon Higgs and Deacon Ryan and so many more were able to see where we are today, they would say Glory to God! Yet, I am confident as well that as they did in their season they would encourage us to prepare and get focused for the task ahead. "Are You Ready & Willing to Press on?

The Apostle Paul had faced a lot of difficult days, and because of his stand for Christ he knew that there would be more difficult days ahead. He had accomplished a lot in ministry but his work was not done. Beloved, we have come a long way, and we have done great work, but now is not the time to slow down, rest or be weary. We must press, not toward our goals but toward the higher things of God, We must accept every challenge, before us and work together to press toward His standards, spiritually and in Ministry. My family and I are so greatly to be a part of Historic Bethlehem and we cannot wait to endure and to excel as one Body of committed believers doing Kingdom work here on earth. Are You Ready and Willing to Press?

Pastor Stuart P. Courtney