First Baptist Church Laredo
Sunday Worship 7-5-2020
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        Ladies Bible Study

        August 13, 2019 - 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
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        Ladies Bible Study

        August 13, 2019 - 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
        Ladies Bible Study, “Remembering the Foundation of Our Faith” Join us every Tuesday at 10:00 am in the fellowship hall
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        Wednesday Night Bible Studies

        August 7, 2019 - 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
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        Wednesday Night Bible Studies

        August 7, 2019 - 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
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        Mandarin Bible Study

        November 2, 2019 - 7:30 PM - 7:30 PM
        如果需要更多信息,请联系王红卫姊妹, 联系电话 (806)620-6521,邮箱 
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        Mandarin Bible Study

        November 2, 2019 - 7:30 PM - 7:30 PM
        如果需要更多信息, 请联系王红卫姊妹, 联系电话 (806)620-6521, 邮箱
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        Pantry of Hope

        July 13, 2019 - 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM
        Volunteers please arrive at 9 am through the back kitchen door. Thank you!
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        Pantry of Hope

        July 11, 2020 - 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM
        Volunteers please arrive at 9 am through the back kitchen door. Thank you!
  • God Bless America
  • You Never Let Go
  • His Mercy Is More
  • What A Friend We Have In Jesus
      • Matthew 5:13–16CSB

  • Holy Spirit
  • Let’s read our theme verse together.
    Revelation 3:6 CSB
    6 “Let anyone who has ears to hear listen to what the Spirit says to the churches.
    We are in a series entitled, “What the Spirit says to the churches”. In this series, we are looking at seven messages to seven historical churches. It is amazing to me how relevant these messages are to us today. We looked at the message to the church at Ephesus. This was a church who had left the love for Jesus they had at first. They needed to repent of their lack of love and change their motives for why they do what they do.
    We looked at the message to the church at Smyrna. This church was under significant persecution and they were reminded of the importance of not being afraid. They were to stay faithful to the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, even to the point of death.
    Open your Bible to Revelation 2. Let’s read the message to the third church, the church at Pergamum.
    Revelation 2:12–17 CSB
    12 “Write to the angel of the church in Pergamum: Thus says the one who has the sharp, double-edged sword: 13 I know where you live—where Satan’s throne is. Yet you are holding on to my name and did not deny your faith in me, even in the days of Antipas, my faithful witness who was put to death among you, where Satan lives. 14 But I have a few things against you. You have some there who hold to the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to place a stumbling block in front of the Israelites: to eat meat sacrificed to idols and to commit sexual immorality. 15 In the same way, you also have those who hold to the teaching of the Nicolaitans. 16 So repent! Otherwise, I will come to you quickly and fight against them with the sword of my mouth. 17 “Let anyone who has ears to hear listen to what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers, I will give some of the hidden manna. I will also give him a white stone, and on the stone a new name is inscribed that no one knows except the one who receives it.
    If Ephesus was the center of commerce for Asia Minor, Pergamum would be the political center. Pergamum would be what Austin is to Texas. It was a weird place. :)
    <show map>
    Pergamum was about 45 miles north of Smyrna and 20 miles from the Aegean Sea. Pergamum was the place of the first imperial temple dedicated to Rome and Caesar. Pergamum was very wealthy and was a city devoted to idolatry. The message to the church at Pergamum says the city was the place of “Satan’s throne”. In other words, paganism and idolatry were immensely powerful influences on the people in Pergamum.
    Pergamum was a university town. It boasted a large library of 200,000 volumes of parchments. Our word “parchment” is derived from the word “Pergamum”. Another interesting fact, the high priest of Pergamum was known as “Pontifex Maximus” or “Chief Bridge Builder”. It would become the title of Julius Caesar and then later the title Roman Catholic Pope. The idea of the title is that the man is the one who spans the gap between the gods and mortal beings. The one bearing the title is the supposed civil and religious head.
    The message to the church at Pergamum opens with a jarring picture of Jesus standing over the church with a sharp, double-edged sword. The sword is the penetrating nature of the Word of God. Remember Jesus is the Word of God. He is the TRUTH, the only truth. The sword is reminding us that Jesus is the true authority.

    1. Jesus is the true authority.

    Here is the reality. It doesn’t matter what I think about a particular subject. It doesn’t matter what you think about a particular subject. The only standard of truth is the standard of Jesus Christ, the Word of God. We take our stand on the authority and truth of the Scripture. Jesus Christ is the fullest revelation of God to man.
    Too often these days, we are following the wrong voices. We are following the thoughts and reason of humans over the authority of God’s Word. Jesus isn’t going to judge you according to how “woke” you are. Jesus isn’t going to judge you about how patriotic you are. Jesus isn’t going to judge you according to society’s standard. You will be judged according to the standard of truth found in the Word of God. Jesus is the only righteous judge. He is the true authority.
    The church at Pergamum and the church today, needs to be reminded of this fact. I have a massive concern with so many churches physically shutdown and so many people turning to the Internet to be fed spiritually. Who are you listening to? There are so many voices out there. Some are good, but some are so dangerous and full of error. Some of the error is so subtle it is insidious. We must always be careful to check what people are saying by the truth found in God’s Word, the truth found in Jesus Christ. Jesus is the true authority.
    Look at Revelation 2 again.
    Revelation 2:13–15 CSB
    13 I know where you live—where Satan’s throne is. Yet you are holding on to my name and did not deny your faith in me, even in the days of Antipas, my faithful witness who was put to death among you, where Satan lives. 14 But I have a few things against you. You have some there who hold to the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to place a stumbling block in front of the Israelites: to eat meat sacrificed to idols and to commit sexual immorality. 15 In the same way, you also have those who hold to the teaching of the Nicolaitans.
    The church at Pergamum had done some things right. Generally, they were faithful and held firm to the name of Jesus, even during persecution. They were living in a difficult place and yet they were standing firm for Jesus Christ. What was their problem? Here it is and brothers and sisters, it is happening all over the place today. They were compromising.

    2. Compromising purity results in God’s discipline

    They were holding to the teaching of Balaam. The story of Balaam begins in Numbers 22. I am not going to relate the story to you this morning for sake of time, but I would encourage you to read it. Basically, the teaching of Balaam was one of idolatry and immorality. From the best I can surmise, the church at Pergamum was doing their best to fit into the culture rather than being distinct and separate from it. They didn’t see the harm in participating in the pagan religious festivals because they weren’t real gods anyway, what was the harm? They didn’t see the harm with sexual liberation because the body didn’t really matter. They could have sex with whoever they wanted because the human spirit was what really mattered, not what you did with your body. They were abusing the principle of Christian liberty and using it as a license to sin. They were compromising their purity for worldly pleasures and pressures. This was a church of tolerance and compromise.
    Do you think this is happening today? Yes, it is. It is increasingly happening today. We are being pressured to affirm Black Lives Matter. They told us that if you didn’t, you were racist. The opposite is true. Listen to the truth from God’s Word.
    Galatians 3:28 CSB
    28 There is no Jew or Greek, slave or free, male and female; since you are all one in Christ Jesus.
    Colossians 3:11 CSB
    11 In Christ there is not Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, slave and free; but Christ is all and in all.
    You are all one in Christ. In Christ, all human divisions are erased. We affirm all people as valuable because we are made in the image of God. We are one race because of the blood of Jesus Christ.
    We are being pressured to conform to the world’s concepts of sexuality. We are told that being LGBTQ is an alternative lifestyle and it is hate speech to call homosexuality and sexual perversion as sin. The opposite is true.
    Romans 1:26–32 CSB
    26 For this reason God delivered them over to disgraceful passions. Their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones. 27 The men in the same way also left natural relations with women and were inflamed in their lust for one another. Men committed shameless acts with men and received in their own persons the appropriate penalty of their error. 28 And because they did not think it worthwhile to acknowledge God, God delivered them over to a corrupt mind so that they do what is not right. 29 They are filled with all unrighteousness, evil, greed, and wickedness. They are full of envy, murder, quarrels, deceit, and malice. They are gossips, 30 slanderers, God-haters, arrogant, proud, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 senseless, untrustworthy, unloving, and unmerciful. 32 Although they know God’s just sentence—that those who practice such things deserve to die—they not only do them, but even applaud others who practice them.
    We are being pressured to isolate ourselves from one another. We are told that protesting in large groups for hours on end is good. We need to exercise our right to protest; however, if you go to church, you are endangering the public health. The opposite is true.
    Hebrews 10:25 CSB
    25 not neglecting to gather together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging each other, and all the more as you see the day approaching.
    We shouldn’t be isolating ourselves. We need to support one another. We need to be together. Brothers and sisters, in some countries, like China, India, Iran, and North Korea, Christians are imprisoned and killed for meeting together and yet they still meet together. Sure, we need to be safe and take appropriate health precautions; however, we cannot and should not be isolating ourselves from one another.
    I want you to hear this. I believe this. God’s Word and experience tells us it is true. Hear this.

    An isolated Christian is an easy target for the evil one.

    There are many other ways we are being pressured to compromise these days. I chose these three areas to point out because they are on the front burner. The esteemed Bible teacher Chuck Swindoll gives us four characteristics of compromise. I want you to have them and know them. Write them down.

    Four Characteristics of Compromise

    1. Compromise slowly influences us to conform to culture.

    The standard is not what our culture thinks about a subject. The question is what does the Bible say about the subject. Jesus Christ is the final authority. The Bible is to be interpreted through Jesus Christ.

    2. Compromise always insists on a standard lower than ordained by God’s Word.

    Have you noticed this? The Bible says it is sin, but compromise looks for a way to make it more acceptable. The Bible says we should do something, but compromise looks for a way to soften the expectation.

    3. Compromise usually is not offensive.

    Compromise looks to make everyone happy. Compromise seeks to be non-offensive, but the truth will always be offensive to error. Look at what Jesus said.
    Matthew 10:34–36 CSB
    34 Don’t assume that I came to bring peace on the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35 For I came to turn a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; 36 and a man’s enemies will be the members of his household.
    Why would Jesus say this? He said this because the truth of God’s Word is offensive and is not tolerant of all viewpoints. God’s Word is truth and is objective, not subjective. God’s Word doesn’t care how you feel about something. It simply holds God’s standard as the objective.

    4. Compromise is the gateway to disobedience.

    We see this over and over in the Scriptures. Seemingly small compromises led to massive problems.
    The best way I can illustrate the dangers of compromise is through boating. The Inter-coastal Waterway has navigational markers. They mark the sides of the channel. If you stay between the buoys, you should have no issues; however, if you drift, you will run aground. It doesn’t take much to drift. It is almost natural to drift. You need to be paying attention all the time. Being off the mark by as little as 1% will eventually led to devastating consequences. The longer you travel off course, the farther you will be from your destination.
    The ill-fated Exxon Valdez was not in the proper shipping lanes when it ran aground on the Bligh Reef in Prince William Sound creating one of the worst oil spills in history. Another example, during the evening of Sept. 8, 1923, a navigational error lead seven destroyers to slam into rocks at Honda Point, California, at a speed of 20 knots. Twenty-three sailors were lost, as were seven Clemson-class destroyers that were about five years old. It doesn’t take much to get off-course.

    What do we do if we find ourselves off-course?

    Revelation 2:16–17 CSB
    16 So repent! Otherwise, I will come to you quickly and fight against them with the sword of my mouth. 17 “Let anyone who has ears to hear listen to what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers, I will give some of the hidden manna. I will also give him a white stone, and on the stone a new name is inscribed that no one knows except the one who receives it.
    The word “repent” carries with it a sense of urgency. Compromise and errant thinking must be dealt with swiftly or it will end in God’s discipline. Compromise eats like a cancer into our values and priorities. Jesus counseled the church to repent of their error.

    Repentance means to “change the mind”.

    Repentance is when you are going one direction and you change the way to are going to pursue another path, to pursue the path of godliness. Either we repent of our sin of compromise and commit to the truth of God’s Word found in Jesus Christ or we face God’s discipline.
    Here is the beautiful part. Repentance leads to eternal blessings.

    3. Repentance leads to eternal blessings.

    To the one who conquers, to the one who remains steadfast and firm in the truth of Jesus Christ, that person will receive hidden manna. In other words, God will give the faithful access to provision and sustenance not accessible to everyone. As the Scriptures say in Deuteronomy 8:3,
    Deuteronomy 8:3 CSB
    3 He humbled you by letting you go hungry; then he gave you manna to eat, which you and your ancestors had not known, so that you might learn that man does not live on bread alone but on every word that comes from the mouth of the Lord.
    Jesus quoted this verse when he was tempted to compromise his mission on earth. Manna is a picture of the Bread of Life, Jesus Christ. The manna could only sustain physical life, but Jesus came to give the life, the real life, eternal life.
    John 10:10 CSB
    10 A thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I have come so that they may have life and have it in abundance.
    The one who conquers is given a white stone with a new name on it that no one knows except the one who receives it. White stones were used to indicate favor or acquittal by judges in ancient times. If you were given a white stone, you were acquitted of all charges. Believers are given a white stone by Jesus Christ who sacrificed his own blood for our sin. We are acquitted of all charges.
    The stone is etched with your new name. No longer are you known as sinner. You are a child of God. You are the elect. You are forgiven. You are a Christian. One day soon, God will give you a new name because you have been faithful and have overcome. You have not compromised the truth. Often in the Scriptures, people are re-named by God. Re-naming is about possession. You belong to God. Abram was re-named Abraham. Jacob was re-named Israel. Simon was re-named Peter. One day, you will be re-named because you have been faithful and you belong to God. You are not just a number or a face in a crowd to God. He knows your name. You are personally loved and known by God.
    Stay faithful. Don’t compromise the truth found in God’s Word. Jesus is the true authority. God rewards the faithful.
    Before we close, I need to talk to those of you who are listen to this messages and you do not have a personal relationship with God. You have never accepted Jesus as your Savior and Lord. Your sin separates you from God. The good news is that God loves you so much that he sent his son Jesus into the world. Jesus, who is God, took on flesh and became the perfect sacrifice for our sins. Jesus is the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. Jesus died for the forgiveness of your sins. On the third day, Jesus raised himself from the dead to prove that everything he claimed was true. The Bible says,
    Romans 10:9–10 CSB
    9 If you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 One believes with the heart, resulting in righteousness, and one confesses with the mouth, resulting in salvation.
    When you call on the name of Jesus, he will hear your prayer, forgive you of your sin, and make you clean. Will you call on his name this morning and receive the forgiveness he offers?
    Please bow your heads and close your eyes. Confess Jesus by praying this prayer with me,
    “Heavenly Father, forgive me for my sins, make me clean. I ask Jesus to be my Savior and to be the Lord of my life, first in every way. My life is not my own, I give it to you. Thank you for new life. In Jesus’ name, I pray.”
    If you prayed that prayer and you want to talk more about what it means to be a follower of Jesus, this is what I want you to do. My email address is on the screen:

    pastorben@fbclaredo.org

    Write to me. Let me know of your decision to follow Jesus. Use the QR code on the bulletin to fill out a connection card, so we can get int contact with you. You can also go to our website and at the bottom of the page is the link to Connect with Us. We want to help you and support you in your decision.
    Close in Prayer.
      • Revelation 3:6CSB

      • Revelation 2:12–17CSB

      • Revelation 2:13–15CSB

      • Galatians 3:28CSB

      • Colossians 3:11CSB

      • Romans 1:26–32CSB

      • Hebrews 10:25CSB

      • Matthew 10:34–36CSB

      • Revelation 2:16–17CSB

      • Deuteronomy 8:3CSB

      • John 10:10CSB

      • Romans 10:9–10CSB

  • Come As You Are
      • Psalm 116:2HCSB

  • The Same Love
      • Download

        Ladies Bible Study

        August 13, 2019 - 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
      • Download

        Ladies Bible Study

        August 13, 2019 - 10:30 AM - 12:30 PM
        Ladies Bible Study, “Remembering the Foundation of Our Faith” Join us every Tuesday at 10:00 am in the fellowship hall
      • Download

        Wednesday Night Bible Studies

        August 7, 2019 - 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
      • Download

        Wednesday Night Bible Studies

        August 7, 2019 - 7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
      • Download

        Mandarin Bible Study

        November 2, 2019 - 7:30 PM - 7:30 PM
        如果需要更多信息,请联系王红卫姊妹, 联系电话 (806)620-6521,邮箱 
      • Download

        Mandarin Bible Study

        November 2, 2019 - 7:30 PM - 7:30 PM
        如果需要更多信息, 请联系王红卫姊妹, 联系电话 (806)620-6521, 邮箱
      • Download

        Pantry of Hope

        July 13, 2019 - 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM
        Volunteers please arrive at 9 am through the back kitchen door. Thank you!
      • Download

        Pantry of Hope

        July 11, 2020 - 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM
        Volunteers please arrive at 9 am through the back kitchen door. Thank you!

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