Week of April 24, 2022

Pastor Brad spoke yesterday about the Sadducees calling the disciples in to speak with them after Easter.  He compared it to being called to the principal’s office because you were in trouble.  First of all, because I knew I’d be writing about this and couldn’t spell Sadducees, and secondly, I wanted to be sure I was referring to them properly, I looked them up.  I apologize to those of you who already know this and don’t need the history lesson, but in case you don’t know who they were…here you go:

The Sadducees and the Pharisees comprised the ruling class of Jews in Jesus’ time.  They had different views and often argued with each other.  Jesus was more often in trouble with the Pharisees because they more closely represented the “common man”, the same population Jesus most often interacted with.  However, these two groups put aside their differences when they became concerned that Jesus’ teachings were getting out of hand and, together, brought about the events of Good Friday and Easter.

So back to our story.  When the disciples were let out of the principal’s office, they went back to their preaching and teaching.  This time the Sadducees arrested them.  They didn’t stay in jail even overnight.  An angel of the Lord came in and let them out.  Left the door to the cell locked.  The guards saw nothing.

The Sadducees decided the disciples needed to be stopped and sent for them to be brought from the jail.  But not only were they not there, they were back out preaching.  Just furious, the Sadducees spoke of putting them to death.  Gamaliel of the Pharisees counseled them against it.  If they killed the disciples, they would become martyrs; if the disciples’ words aren’t from God, it’ll go away; if their words are from God, heaven help us (meaning heaven help the Chief Priests and the entire ruling class).

And look how it turned out. 

God calls us, not just the 12, to be witnesses.  We are all able to do this.  Just talk about Jesus’ effect on your life.  That’s all we need to do.  God will do the rest.

Our individual stories are important because others need to hear how God works in the every day.  And we see and experience it.  Every day.

Amen. — JB


Adult Sunday School – The adult class that meets at 9 am in the library began a new book study yesterday morning.  Everyone is welcome!  Come join us!

Mark Your Calendar – May 14 at 1 pm the UMW, now titled United Women in Faith, is hosting a baby shower to benefit Heartbeat of Monroe and New Beginnings.  A light lunch will be served and we will have a speaker from each organization.  There is a sign-up sheet in the fellowship hall so we know how many to expect.  There is also a gift list so you know the needs of the groups.  Come join us for a fun afternoon that will help those in need!

It’s a watch party! – The Leadership Team is based on the single board governance model.  It’s been explained and discussed a number of times, most recently at the Leadership Team luncheon March 27 after worship.  We have a chance to hear from Rev. Dirk Elliott as he explains the implementation process via zoom May 12 at 7 – 8:30 pm and repeated May 23 from 10 – 11:30 am.  The meetings will be set up at the church and everyone is welcome to attend, watch, and discuss the presentation together.

Thank you to everyone who has given feedback to the Leadership Team over the last few weeks.  Your thoughts and suggestions are always welcome.  We are working to incorporate your thoughts, suggestions, and concerns into better meeting the spiritual and physical needs for our church’s community.  Please contact any of our members at any time.  They are:  Shirley Massingill, Lila Breitner, Kathy Leslie, Nancy Clark, Bill Plumb, Meridith Baugher, Ken Seegert, Keri Secor, Louise Proctor, Andrea Hickey, Jill Bradley, and Pastor Brad Luck.

Information about the Business of the Church — See the display in the narthex by the entrance to the sanctuary.  There is a chair and a reading lamp there so you may take your time and be comfortable as you review the materials provided.

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