COG Webcast

May 2nd, 2020

Don’t Think Like a Slave – Escape Slavery

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road to freedom

Do You Know When You’re a Slave?

How can you escape slavery, if you do not know you are a slave? This was the dilemma as expressed by Frederick Douglass the American abolitionist reformer in the 1800’s. He did not know he was a slave until he could no longer do the things he wanted to do. In our present situation with ‘stay at home’ orders, the lock down of many businesses, and the control of movement many people are becoming worried about the power of the state overriding constitutional rights. In North America we have to this point cherished our freedoms: freedom to speak, to move, and to defend ourselves. And yet have we succumbed to a different kind of slavery? More

April 26th, 2020

Miracles are Not Enough – Remembering the Story of Israel

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Israel's story in the wildernessWhen Miracles are not Enough

Are you looking for a miracle to bolster your faith? The sad reality is that miracles are not enough. Paul made this reality very clear in writing to the brethren at Corinth. They had made an amazing transformation by accepting the biblical message and rejecting their pagan roots. As a result, they were now ‘spiritual Jews’ and the children of Abraham through baptism, even though gentiles by birth. But Paul had a warning for them and for us. He reminded them of the history of their ancestors, the Israelites in the wilderness. And Paul explained the pitfalls that tripped them up, even though they had seen God’s amazing deliverance. It was evident that the miracles were not enough. For intimate personal experience with God’s miracle working power did not transform the people or build their faith. So what is the lesson for us? More

April 19th, 2020

The Wave Sheaf – Symbol of our Messiah

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wave sheaf and our MessiahThe Wave Sheaf and the Son of God

Paul was eager to preach the gospel, and in doing so he helps us understand the message of the wave sheaf. He wanted everyone to know the reality of the Messiah. For what he had witnessed had given him confidence that Jesus was indeed the Christ, the Messiah. And it was through the Messiah that all people would experience ‘salvation’ and the hope of eternal life. And yet, as we read the gospel account of John, Jesus plainly said that though he was a king, the Son of God, his kingdom was not of this world. As a result the Jewish leaders went to Pilate to demand that Jesus be crucified for blasphemy, as he equated himself with the Lord God of Israel. More

April 11th, 2020

Leading Unleavened Lives – Lessons from Passover

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Unleavened Bread — A Quaint Tradition?

lessons from unleavened breadIf we know the biblical accounts, then we know this is a time when our spiritual ancestors would have been leading unleavened lives. For they had physically removed the yeast of leavened bread from their homes. But, the Christian world is divided when it comes to how to celebrate or remember the events that the bible recounts at this time of year. Most conventional Christians embrace the Good Friday – Easter Sunday tradition. If they think about it at all, they may consider Passover, and the idea of eating ‘unleavened bread,’ matzah, as quaint Jewish customs. But in favouring tradition over ‘sola scriptura’ believers are missing important lessons that we are told to remember. So how did our spiritual ancestors worship and what insight did this give them? More

April 4th, 2020

Preparing for Passover — New Insights about Paul and Passover

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Paul and PassoverPaul and Passover — A Reliable Witness

Paul’s Testimony about Passover is something that even atheist and agnostic scholars acknowledge as solid historical evidence of Jesus’ life and ministry. At this time of year it is important to consider the foundation of our faith as Christians. So it may come as a surprise that even secular historians give credence to the veracity and trustworthiness of the gospels and Paul’s writings. Scholars support the eye-witness reports of scripture as authentic accounts of historic events. So let’s consider Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection as recounted by these faithful witnesses. More

March 29th, 2020

Passover Sacrifices and Life beyond the Pandemic

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Passover SacrificePassover Sacrifices and the Four Horsemen

Passover Sacrifices may seem to have little to do with the fears many people are voicing over the spectre of pandemic disease. People are conjuring up the biblical visions of the four horsemen.  These plagues of false religion, war, famine and disease have been the scourge of society for millennia. And today, perhaps the fear is that these horsemen are now riding once again.  Some are wondering if they will bring death to them or their loved ones. But is there an antidote to this spectre of death and destruction? Is there a sacrifice that will protect us in times of insecurity, and guard our lives? How does the ancient story of the Passover sacrifice speak to our concerns in this century? What lessons can we learn? More

March 22nd, 2020

The Antidote to Fear – Fear No Evil

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love casts out fearWhat are You Afraid Of?

In a world awash in fears, is there an antidote to fear? Some fears are reasonable and they prompt us to take measures to protect ourselves and others. The fear of a communicable disease should motivate us to quarantine and practice good hygiene. And these are reasonable measures to take when dealing with contagions. But, other fears are unreasonable. They undermine our health, and in reacting to them we bring the consequences we feared upon us. But as Christians, followers of Jesus, we do not need to be overwhelmed by our fears. For Jesus has given us a gift of peace and that peace will calm our fears. But how do we receive this gift? And what exactly is this peace that Jesus promises? More