June 2-8, 2017
Christ the Lord over All Powers
Can you imagine living in an America where every city has its own idol cult and people constantly walk around afraid that they will somehow insult or neglect some spirit lurking around the corner? Let's say you want to travel to Albertville from Guntersville. In order get to the top of Sand Mountain you must pass through the gate of "the god of Sand Mountain." At the gate there is a shrine to the god where you must give an offering or sacrifice to the god of Sand Mountain lest you offend him and upon entering his territory, be cursed by him. Imagine this is life in America. This is what life was like in the ancient world before the Word of God came incarnate. There seemed to be a god or spirit to please or displease in every activity. This is how demons dominated and captivated mankind for centuries. Indeed, this is still true today in many parts of the world where Christ's kingdom is small or not represented.
The "god," Brukun, of the Akyode in Ghana subjugates its people in a way similar to what I described above. As Brad will soon discover when Chris Holloway takes him up the mountain to Shaire--the hub of the Brukun cult--the Akyode regard Brukun as a real power which they fear. You might expect this sort of backwards superstition to still permeate the hearts of uneducated peoples in a "third-world," developing country, but such idol worship is not relegated to the uneducated. At the front gate of one of the largest universities in Thailand, Khon Kaen University (ranked among the top 5), there is a shrine dedicated to the "spirit" of KKU. Don't misunderstand. We are not talking about "school spirit" like we are used to stirring up at a pep rally. We aren't talking about "War Eagle!" or "Roll Tide!" chants, how ever religious that may be. I mean the locals of Khon Kaen actually believe in a real entity which blesses and oversees the students at KKU. Wherever Christ is not named, worship and religion are still prevalent. Where Christ is not Lord, idols and demons still captivate the people of this world. And this is true even among atheist societies, though they would not like to admit it. Either we will bow before the proper throne of the Highest Potentate, or we will attempt to dethrone Christ and replace Him with someone or something else. For an atheist, that may mean putting herself on the throne. Or the cosmos in general. Or matter (stuff). But make no mistake, worship is happening in that life. It is just in us; we were made for it.
Now imagine living at an amazing time in history when idols were being overthrown and demons were finally losing their power. Saint Athanasius lived at such a time in history, recently after the advent of Christ. Athanasius watched with joy the kingdom of Christ spread through the ancient world and conquer it. He wrote in On the Incarnation, "And what is wonderful is that coming as a human being to death, He [Jesus] has destroyed the grandiloquence of the wise concerning idols. For whose death ever cast out demons? Or of whose death were the demons ever so afraid as that of Christ? For where the name of the Savior is named, there every demon is expelled." Athanasius took it as blatant evidence that Jesus was the divine Word of God seeing how many Gentiles gave up their idolatry and how the power of Christ was shown to put demons to flight. What's more, he says, "The demons, knowing their weakness, because of this formerly set human beings at war with each other, lest if they ceased from mutual strife, they should turn to battle against the demons. Indeed, those who become disciples of Christ, instead of fighting against each other, stand arrayed against the demons by their lives and deeds of virtue, putting them to flight and mocking their prince, the devil, so that, in their youth they are temperate, in temptations they endure, in toils they persevere, when insulted they forbear, and deprivations they disregard, and, what is most wonderful is that they scorn even death and become martyrs for Christ."
We are still able to take it for granted in the Western world today that idols are futile and demons are powerless because of the spread of Christianity through the Roman Empire. We may even be tempted to live like demons don't even exist at all. Or we may be tempted to justify our contemporary "idols" since they can't be seriously compared to the idols of pagans. But such things do still exist. We are still fortunate in our culture to know the relative calm of Christ's reign, for now. But there are still places in the world that need to witness a revolution of the kingdom of God advancing to expose idols as worthless and demons as powerless in the presence of Christ and His Church. That's why Jesus has delegated authority to us as Kingdom representatives to go and make disciples of all nations.
- Children's Ministry Needs:
- 4 volunteers on rotation to supervise the kids on Wednesday nights during the summer. There will be no children's classes on Wednesday nights during the summer, just playground and/or a movie. A sign up sheet is on the welcome table for volunteers.
- 2 extra Sunday School teachers to add to the rotation.
- Anyone interested in being on Sunday night rotation (1 year term)
Please call, text, or see Regina if you are interested.
- Check out the welcome table for upcoming events and sign ups.
- June 3rd Dragon Boat Races in support of Habitat for Humanity. Come out and support the NCBC team!
- Family Meeting, Sunday, June 4th at 6 pm. Please bring your favorite dish or dessert to share. Drinks will be provided by the church.
- Ladies Fellowship is June 15th at 6 pm at Cindy Ham's house.
June 3 - Dragon Boat Race
June 4 - Family Meeting Sunday Night
June 8 - Pool Party at the Knights house, 1-3 pm
June 9-10 - Young Men's Retreat
June 11 - Church-wide game night
June 15 - Trip to The Factory in Gadsden, 3-4 pm (leave from church at 2:30. Tickets are $13)
June 20 - Matinee at Boaz 9 to see "Cars 3"
June 21 - Student Home Meeting at the Parnells
June 27 - Picnic at Civitan Park, 11 am to 1 pm (bring your favorite bagged lunch and sports balls)
July 2 - Church Picnic at Noccalula Falls
July 11 - Six Flags Day (Will need chaperones to attend. Tickets $47.99. Leaving church at 8 am)
July 16-19 - Art Camp. Theme is "Survival: Out pray, out last, outreach." Focus of the lessons will be on Spiritual Disciplines.
July 23-27 - Summer Mission Project with Breakaway Ministries in Gadsden. Register by May 31st with $50 deposit.
- Please continue to pray for and support the Champion Family as we grieve the loss of our brother, Ron.
- Pray for all the benevolence cases we work with on a weekly basis. Most of them are unchurched. Pray the gospel takes root and praise God for all the provision we have to be able to do this ministry.
Sunday Morning Childcare:
Bed Babies through 2's - Amy Williams, Kevin Parnell, Randy Spence
3 through 4 year olds - Amber Knight & Matt Colvin
Last Week’s Statistics:
|Budget Receipts this Week:||$2,641.00|
|Budget Needs Weekly:||$4,097.88|
|Budget Receipts YTD:||$88,847.50|
|Budget Needs YTD:||$90,153.46|
|Building Fund this Week:||$40.00|
|Building Fund YTD:||$3,820.00|
912 E. Main Street, P.O. Box 131- Albertville, AL 35950
Pastor – Brad Williams
Family Pastor -- David Porch
9:30am – Sunday School
10:30am - Worship Service
6:00pm – Community Groups
6:30pm - Children/Student Activities
6:30pm – Adult Bible Study