COG Webcast

May 25th, 2019

What Spirit Motivates You?

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spirit of God or spirit of the world

Daniel Borup – sculptor

A Lesson from James and John

What kind of spirit motivates people to do what they do? To answer that question, Luke, wrote of Jesus’ journey with this disciples to Jerusalem. Along the road the weary travellers asked to stay in a Samaritan village, but they were rebuffed. Why? Because the Samaritans saw that the group was on their way to Jerusalem. Now, there had been 500 years of contention between Jews and Samaritans over where one should worship. It had begun long before in the time of Zerubbabel when the Samaritans had tried to undermine the rebuilding of the temple in Jerusalem. So there was a long-standing ethnic feud that prompted the Samaritan’s reaction to Jesus and his disciples. Their sin was a mere lack of hospitality to travel worn strangers. What would you have done if you walked in their sandals? More

May 25th, 2019

Dealing with Deception – Do you know the Devil’s Devices?

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deceivedThe Tree of Knowledge

We first meet the Devil’s devices in the garden of Eden. There he sowed doubt in the minds of Adam and Eve with his crafty insinuation. “Is it true that God has said…” He first undermined their trust in God as a God of truth. Then, he appealed to their desire to be wise and live forever, with the infamous, “You shall not surely die!” As the Father of lies he obscured the truth that only God could give eternal life as a gift. And though it was ‘true’ that the tree of knowledge would ‘open their eyes’ and give them knowledge, he used this to deceive. Their adversary also knew the ultimate outcome of eating the fruit of that tree would be death.

Are we as aware as we should be of the Devil’s devices as they have been re-envisioned in our world. Or do we buy into one of his finest lies, “The devil? Naw, he doesn’t exist.” More

May 18th, 2019

Mothers of Faith — Agents for God

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DEBORAH mother in IsraelLeaders in Times of Trouble

There was a time of great calamity in the history of the people of Israel. They had suffered for twenty years under the cruel hand of Jabin of Hazor their enemy. They needed wise and dedicated leadership to lead them out of their troubles. And the best man for this job was a woman. God had chosen Deborah to lead his people as their judge, one who was governor, as well as, legal decision-maker and arbiter. In this dangerous time when settlements had ceased and foreign forces were invading, God chose a mother in Israel to encourage Barak, her military leader. God spoke to Deborah urging her to gather the people to cast off their oppressors. And in the end, God blessed the efforts of Deborah’s small ill-equipped army of volunteers in their fight against a much superior force of chariots and well-armed soldiers. Mothers of faith can make all the difference. More

May 4th, 2019

God’s Endgame for the Saints – Road to Pentecost

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Kingdom of GodGod’s Epic Story of Triumph

Our world has an appetite for epic stories of triumph over the forces of darkness and evil. “Endgame” is a recent example which brings to mind the question, “What is God’s endgame for his saints?” It is certainly an even greater thriller than one that can be imagined by Hollywood. And it too is a story of the triumph of light over darkness, and the truth over lies and deception. It is a tale of spiritual powers locked in battle for the cosmos, and the eventual overthrow of the great deceiver. But there is more to the story. More

April 27th, 2019

In God’s Service? — How are you managing?

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in God's serviceServants of our Master

Sectarianism was a negative part of the religious milieu in Paul’s day. In order to combat this divisive “party spirit” he made it plain that we are all “in God’s service.” And this service is to a common master. So we should all be performing our role as servants of God working together to perform his will. But sometimes we find this concept daunting. What does it really mean to be in God’s service? More

April 26th, 2019

Go Forward in Faith — Lessons from Our Ancestors

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Israel at the Red Sea go forwardLearning from Our Forefathers

In our world, “identity politics” is a topic of much debate. But God laughs at such notions. So, when Paul admonishes believers to go forward in faith he is talking to everyone. There is no Jew or Gentile, rather if we are Christ’s then Abraham is our forefather in the faith. And, if we are Abraham’s descendants — his children — then the bible is our story. That is why Paul could warn believers in his day to learn from the lessons of faith taught by Israel’s journey out of Egypt. Because Israel’s history was written to instruct them about their heritage. And to warn them not to make the same mistakes, and test Christ! More

April 21st, 2019

Passover and Repentance – The First Steps to the Kingdom

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road to emmausPassover and Repentance

The Passover season brings to mind all the events surrounding the death and resurrection of the Messiah. These events had been prophesied centuries earlier in the Psalms and the prophets. Jesus recounted all the prophecies that confirmed that he was the Messiah after his resurrection, as he walked on the road to Emmaus with two disciples. Luke revealed in this account that it was necessary for Jesus to suffer, die, and rise again. Why? So that repentance could be preached to all nations. And, having repented, believers could become empowered by the Holy Spirit. Luke reiterated this message in the book of Acts. He recounted the story of Pentecost when Peter encouraged the people to repent and be baptized so they could receive the Holy Spirit. But what did it mean to repent? More