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Friday, June 14, 2019

Tomato Barn, Washington Boro, PA 6/14/19
This morning we picked up some juicy red tomatoes at the Tomato Barn near Washington Boro, PA

"Such Were Some Of You"

Message summary: We who have turned to the Lord can joyfully declare, "I am washed, I am sanctified, and I am justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of God".

Listen to our message on your audio player.

"Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God. Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God" (1 Corinthians 6:9-11).

I've been changed (I've been changed)
In the presence of the lord,
I've been (healed), Freed (freed), Delivered (delivered)

Today we want you to consider those you personally know who are heavily trapped in sin. Some mockingly declare that they are beyond hope and God would never love them. They may be totally unreceptive to the gospel and any attempt to share the Lord is met with scorn. I suppose many of you know people like this whether it's alcohol, drugs, sexual immorality or some other bondage to sin. And I'm also quite sure some of you were once like this.

Tom, a long time reader from Arizona, shared his testimony with me and gave me permission to share it in a message. I believe it will bless you as it did me.

For thirty years I was a drunk, an intelligent drunk. I always worked and was good at my job, but I drank every day, from the time that I got off work until I went to bed. And on weekends from the time I got up until I passed out. I admired good drinkers and only hung out with other drinkers. I wouldn't go anywhere that I couldn't drink. It's not as uncommon as you might think. No matter where I went, I was able to find people just like me. It was a way of life and I liked it.

The only problem was, I couldn't do anything else --- at least, not very well.

I loved wood carving, but could only do it for a few hours at a time. I knew myself well enough to know that I could never do it for a living. It would get in the way of my drinking.

My wife started going to church sixty miles away in Phoenix. She always asked me if I wanted to go, but never pushed. 

Eventually I said OK, so she packed me a six-pack; three beers on the way to church and three for the ride home. A pretty good deal for me! I was content and my wife was glad I was going to church.

But then, after several months of this, on Super Bowl Sunday 1997, half way to Phoenix I started to cry. I told my wife I had to be prayed for; that I had to quit drinking.

That very day I was prayed for and I confessed my sins to Jesus and accepted the Lord into my life.

That was the last day that I drank any alcohol! I had no side effects, no shakes, no bad dreams, no sleepless nights and no desire to drink. Jesus took it away and I'm free today!

As I read Tom's testimony I rejoiced and recalled the daily passage.  A lot of people squirm at it. It's not politically correct. Man either wants an excuse for sinful behavior or he wants to redefine it. But the Scriptures forthrightly declare, "The unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God".

Emphatically the text proclaims, "Do not be deceived". But so many are deceived today. Among the list of sins that exclude one from entering the Kingdom of God is drunkenness. As I prepare this message reading and examining the text closely I am aware that this passage chafes so many. It tells us the truth and so many just don't want to hear the truth. They are deceived and want excuses. They want to be told that evil is good. Amazingly the logic is so twisted that for many in today's world a passage like this is considered unloving and even hateful.

But note the glorious gospel in this passage in the last verse. "Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of our God."

I delight in stories of changed lives like Tom's. Jesus Christ continues to save, wash, sanctify and justify people all over the world. Many of you have a story that resembles that of Tom's, though our testimonies vary in the nature of God's deliverance. 

But if we've turned to the Lord we  can joyfully declare, "I am washed, I am sanctified, and I am justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of God".

Be encouraged today,

Stephen & Brooksyne Weber

Praying manDaily prayer: Jesus, it is by Your amazing grace that I rejoice in the glorious transformation that has changed my life completely and forever. For You delivered me from the domain of darkness and transferred me into the Kingdom of Your Son in whom I have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. Thank You for Your glorious deliverance and heavenly transfer – and it is all because of Your love for me. Amen.

We especially pray for readers today who have loved ones trapped in alcoholism, drugs, addictions, sexual immorality and other types of sinful bondage that they would turn to the Lord and be set free.

Tomato Barn, Washington Boro, PA 6/14/19
Preparing tomatoes in the Tomato Barn. Washington Boro is famous here in Lancaster County for tomatoes with an annual Washington Boro Tomato Festival held each year in July. The tomato barn website has a bold testimony for Christ, "I would like to thank God publicly for what He has done here at the Tomato Barn, but most of all I would like to thank God for providing a way for me to have everlasting life through His Son, Jesus.  If you have never considered the everlasting, I pray that you would. God does not want anyone to perish. If God can use somebody like me with all my faults, He can use you as well.

We stopped by to visit Dylan yesterday who is manager of a shipping warehouse. We saw Dylan for many years at a company he know longer works for so it was good to see him again.

We also ran into Suzanne and her mother in the grocery store. We wrote about Suzanne and her remarkable journey from Vietnam to her adoptive family in this message "A Brand New Ending".

Yesterday Brooksyne had a young chaplain assistant as we walked through Vallorbs who created a lot of attention.

JK Mechanical service techs 6/14/19
Early this morning I visited with Charlie and Connor, two JK Mechanical service team techs. Charlie (left) is a Stevens graduate mentoring Connor who just completed his first year at the school. What a blessing to encourage these two young men who are working hard.

Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources

"I Won't Go Back"  Video  Brooklyn Tabernacle  Video (with lyrics)

"Mercy Saw Me"  Video   Calvin Hunt

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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.

Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."

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