Monday, August 30, 2010

O God Our Help in Ages Past

Fierce winds blow, lightning flashes, and thunder cracks so loudly it shakes your home. That kind of storm makes us quake with fear and wonder how we’ll ever survive. And that’s the kind of storm we feel each time another terrorist strikes, or a job is lost, or a loved one dies.

In the midst of such storms, our hearts can find hope in the words of Isaac Watts hymn "O God Our Help in Ages Past."
            1.Our God, our help in ages past,

               Our hope for years to come,
               Our shelter from the stormy blast,
               And our eternal home.
            2.Under the shadow of Thy throne

                Thy saints have dwelt secure;
                Sufficient is Thine arm alone,
                And our defense is sure.
As the hymn writer states, God is "our shelter from the stormy blast....Sufficient is Thine arm alone." No matter what tragedy strikes, God can protect us.
But how can we be so sure that God is there in the storm? The hymn answers that question in these words, "from everlasting you are God, to endless years the same." God doesn’t change. He guided the Israelites safely to the Promised Land. He raised Jesus from the dead. And when we look at our own past, we’ll always notice the same thing: God was there to see us through the storms. Knowing that, we can live with hope that he’ll protect us in the present too.
What storms shake you today? Maybe you feel like an emotional wreck. Maybe you’re fighting tough spiritual battles. Maybe your family circumstances have spiraled out of control. But no matter what "stormy blast" may be swirling around you, hold on to the promise of this hymn. Let the truth of Psalm 90 be your strength for you just as it was for Isaac Watts so long ago. You can be confident that God will see you through.
O God You are, You are our help you are our helper, To all generations you will be, forever and ever, Our shield and our eternal hope, O Lord; You are the Ancient of Days and worthy of our praise.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Sermon Summary for Joshua 6

As we study Joshua 6 we will discover serveral keys to overcoming the walls that we face in our christian walk.

Keys to Victory

      YOUR WORSHIP Joshua 5:13-15
      YOUR WALLS Joshua 6:1
      YOUR WORD Joshua 6:2
      YOUR WALK Joshua 6:6-21

Do not look upon your walls as impossible problems but as an opportunity to see the power of God at work in your life. 
As you face your wall remember..... 
    Doubt sees the walls; faith sees the way.
    Doubt sees the darkest night; faith sees the day.
    Doubt fears to take a step; faith soars on high;
    Doubt questions, “Who believes?” Faith answers, “It is I.”

No matter your wall...There Is VICTORY In JESUS.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Prayer: 24-7-365 for 100 Years

Prayer: 24-7-365 for 100 Years! is a post by pastorron7 on Prayer. Pastor Ron is a friend of mine from the Shoals.  I share this today to encourage us in our prayer life.

Imagine a church deciding to pray for a set period of time. That wouldn’t be thought unusual, unless we heard it was a decision to pray for 24 hours a day… for a week. But imagine if they decided to pray 24-7 for a month. That would be highly unusual to us, but not jaw dropping. But imagine if they decided to pray 24-7 for A YEAR! Now that would be something. But that is nothing compared to what one group of believers did. Their prayer vigil lasted 24 hours a day… 7 days a week… for 52 weeks… for ONE HUNDRED YEARS! (You read that right… 100 years!)

August 27, 1727: Count Nicolaus von Zinzendorf’s Moravian community at Herrnhut, Germany, begins a round-the-clock “prayer chain.” Reportedly, at least one person in the community was praying every minute of the day—for more than a century. If you are interested in reading an article or two, click here and here. From the articles linked, this is written…

FACT: The Moravian Community of Herm­hut in Saxony, in 1727, commenced a round‑the‑clock “prayer watch” that continued nonstop for over a hundred years. By 1792, 65 years after com­mencement of that prayer vigil, the small Moravian community had sent 300 missionar­ies to the ends of the earth.

Could it be that there is some relationship between those facts? Is fervent interces­sion a basic component in world evangeliza­tion? The answer to both questions is surely an unqualified “yes.” That heroic eighteenth‑century evangelization thrust of the Moravians has not received the attention it deserves. But even less heralded than their missionary exploits is that hundred‑year prayer meeting that sustained the fires of evangelism.

During Its first five years of existence the Herrnhut settlement showed few signs of spiritual power. By the beginning of 1727 the community of about three hundred people was wracked by dissension and bickering. An unlikely site for revival! Zinzendorf and others, however, covenanted to prayer and labor for revival. On May 12 revival came. Christians were aglow with new life and power, dissension vanished and un­believers were converted. Looking back to that day and the four glorious months that followed, Zinzendorf later recalled: “The whole place represented truly a visible habitation of God among men.” A spirit of prayer was immediately evident in the fellow­ship and continued throughout that “golden summer of 1727,” as the Moravians came to designate the period.

On August 27 of that year twenty-four men and twenty-four women covenanted to spend one hour each day in scheduled prayer. Some others enlisted in the “hourly intercession.” “For over a hundred years the members of the Moravian Church all shared in the ‘hourly intercession.’ At home and abroad, on land and sea, this prayer watch ascended unceas­ingly to the Lord,” stated historian A. J. Lewis.

That prayer watch was instituted by a commu­nity of believers whose average age was about thirty. Zinzendorf was twenty-seven. The prayer vigil by Zinzendorf and the Moravian community sensitized them to attempt the unheard‑of mission to reach others for Christ. Six months after the begin­ning of the prayer watch the count suggested to his fellow Moravians the challenge of a bold evangelism aimed at the West Indies, Green­land, Turkey/Lapland. Some were skepti­cal, but Zinzendorf persisted. twenty-six Moravians stepped forward the next day to volun­teer for world missions wherever the Lord led them.

The exploits that followed are surely to be numbered among the high moments of Chris­tian history. Nothing daunted Zinzendorf or his fellow heralds of Jesus Christ ‑ prison, ship­wreck, persecution, ridicule, plague, abject poverty, threats of death. Church historians look to the eighteenth cen­tury and marvel at the Great Awakening in England and America, which swept hundreds of thousands into God’s Kingdom. John Wes­ley figured largely in that mighty movement and much attention has centered on him. It is not possible that we have overlooked the place, which that round-the‑clock prayer watch had in reaching Wesley and, through him and his associates, in altering the course of history?

Many churches are organized beautifully… running like a well oiled machine… with programs galore… everyone who is anyone attends there… they are the envy of many in the evangelical community. Yet I’ve been in the game long enough to know that it is possible to do ministry… outwardly “effective” ministry… in the flesh. Sad thing is, numbers don’t impress the King.

I wonder… what would happen if a group of believers determined to pray, and keep on praying, until God sent revival and awakening to us?

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

“They’re coming home for Christmas and paying their own way.”

An old man in Phoenix calls his son in New York and says, “I hate to ruin your day, but I have to tell you that your mother and I are divorcing; forty-five years of misery is enough.”

“Pop, what are you talking about,” the son screams.
“We can’t stand the sight of each other any longer,” the old man said. “We’re sick and tired of each other, and I’m sick of talking about this, so you call your sister in Chicago and tell her.” And he hangs up.
Frantic, the son calls his sister, who explodes on the phone, “Like heck they’re getting a divorce,” she shouts. “I’ll take care of this.”
She calls Phoenix immediately, and screams at the old man, “You are NOT getting divorced! Don’t do a single thing until I get there. I’m calling my brother back and we’ll both be there tomorrow. Until then don’t do a thing, DO YOU HEAR ME?” And she hangs up.
The old man hangs up his phone and turns to his wife. “Okay,” he says, “They’re coming home for Christmas and paying their own way.”

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Are You Smarter than An 8th Grader?

Remember when our grandparents, great-grandparents, and such stated that they only had an 8th grade education? Well, check this out. - - - This is the eighth-grade final exam from 1895 in Salina, KS, USA. It was taken from the original document on file at the Smokey Valley Genealogical Society and Library in Salina, KS, and reprinted by the Salina Journal.

Grammar (Time, one hour)
1. Give nine rules for the use of Capital Letters.
2. Name the Parts of Speech and define those that have no Modifications.
3. Define Verse, Stanza and Paragraph.
4. What are the Principal Parts of a verb. Give Principal Parts of. lie, lay and run
5. Define Case, Illustrate each Case.
6. What is Punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of Punctuation.
7. Write a composition of about 150 words and show therein that you understand the practical use of the rules of grammar.

Arithmetic (Time, 1.25 hours)
1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.
2. A wagon box is 2 ft deep, 10 feet long! , and 3 ft. wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold?
3. If a load of wheat weighs 3942 lbs., what is it worth at 50cts/bushel, deducting 1050lbs. for tare?
4. District No. 33 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals?
5. Find cost of 6720 lbs. coal at $6.00 per ton.
6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent.
7. What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft. long at $20 per meter?
8 Find bank discount on $300 for! 90 days (no grace) at 10 percent.
9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the distance around which is 640 rods?
10. Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt.

U. S. History (Time, 45 minutes)
1. Give the epochs into which U. S. History is divided.
2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus.
3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.
4. Show the territorial growth of the United States.
5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas.
6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.
7. Who were the following: Morse, Whitney, Fulton, Bell, Lincoln, Penn, and Howe?
8. Name events connected with the following dates: 1607, 1620, 1800, 1849, 1865.

Orthography (Time, one hour) (The art or study of correct spelling according to established usage.)
1. What is meant by the following: Alphabet, phonetic, orthography, etymology, syllabication?
2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?
3. What are the following, and give examples of each: Trigraph, sub vocals, diphthong, cognate letters, linguals?
4. Give four substitutes for caret 'u! '.
5. Give two rules for spelling words with final 'e.' Name two exceptions under each rule.
6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.
7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: bi, dis, mis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, mono, sup.
8. Mark diacritically and divide into syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates the sound: card, ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last.
9. Use the following correctly in sentences: cite, site, sight, fane, fain, feign, vane, vain, vein, raze, raise, rays.
10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllabication.

Geography (Time, one hour)
1. What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?
2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas?
3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?
4. Describe the mountains of North America.
5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia, Odessa, Denver, Manitoba, Hecla, Yukon, St. Helena, Juan Fernandez, Aspinwall & Orinoco.
6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S.
7. Name all the republics of Europe and give the capital of each.
8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude?
9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.
10. Describe the movements of the earth. Give the inclination of the earth.

Also notice that the exam took five hours to complete.
Gives the saying "she/he only had an 8th grade education" a whole new meaning, doesn't it?

What happened to us??? It is kind of humbling, isn't it?  I would have to admit, "I'm Greg Davis, I have a BS, MDiv., and DMin... and I am not as smart as an 8th grader.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

What Are the 15 Most Precious Pages of Your Bible?

If you could only give someone 15 pages from your Bible, which would you choose?

Gordon MacDonald raised that question in one of his devotionals. He spoke of a visit to China 25 years ago shortly after it had opened its doors to American travelers: My travel partner and I met a Christian woman who had not seen a copy of the Scriptures for two decades. When she spoke to us of the Scriptures, her recollection of certain stories was faulty or distorted. What could you expect from someone who hadn't seen a Bible for that many years? Since all Bibles in the possession of travelers entering China at that time had to be registered at the border, and since we did not sense a calling to be Bible smugglers, my traveling companion and I could not pass on the Bibles that each of us had with us. But, on the other hand, it occurred to us that we could tear out certain pages from our Bibles and offer them to her. At least we were brave enough to feel certain that Chinese officials would not check our Bibles closely enough to see if every page was there.  And then he added this challenge as an aside: "By the way, if you could only give someone 15 pages of your Bible, what sections would you choose? You have minutes to decide."

So, what's your answer? I'd tear out the Parable of the Prodigal Son for her, or the pages where the Sermon on the Mount is found. I'd definitely include the story of the cross and the resurrection. And Romans 8. Oh, and probably 1 Corinthians 15 about the hope of resurrection.

What about you?

Try this little exercise and it should spark something within you. It should renew your appreciation for God's precious word, but it should also move you to want to share that word with others. If we really believe that the Bible has the power to change lives, then we're withholding help from our friends and family if we're not trying to connect them with the Book.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Sermon Notes for Joshua 5

Topic:   Preparing For Victory
Text:  Joshua 5:1-15

  As we face our future at Central Baptist it is crucial that we prepare spiritually.  Joshua 5 will teach us several important truths that, if followed, will prepare us to enter into God's promised inhertitance and to conquer the battles that lie ahead. 
  1. Renew Your Commitment
  2. Reaffirm Your Confidence
  3. Release Your Condemnation
  4. Remember Your Past
  5. Reception to Change
  6. Relinquish the Control
 Before we rush into battle, we must take time to be holy.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Remarks that I really don’t want to hear behind me during church service.

Here are just a few:
• “Dude, I’m gonna hafta call you back. We’re about to pray or something.”
• “Boo-oooo!”
• “The pastor looks really cute today.”
• “Mommy, my tummy doesn’t feel good. I think I’m gonna throw uh—erpleeeeeck!” (Accompanied by a  
     splashing sound against my seat.)
• “Hey there, ladies… nice bibles. You come here often?”
• “Zzzzzzzzzz…”
• “Sweet! I just scored the last Krispy Kreme at the snack table.”
• “He’s good, but he’s no Joyce Meyer.”
• “Dang it, I grabbed my Bhagavad-Gita by mistake. The Message Bible is still in the Prius next to my yoga mat.”
• “You think they’ll mind if I use the offering basket to break a five?”
• “Seven-day sex challenge? Now you’re talking, pastor!”
• “I can’t see the pulpit. The guy in front of me has a melon that could show up on Google Earth.”

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


I wish to dedicate this new journey of blogging to a good friend and past worship leader...his name shall not be said...he knows who he is.  For seven years this friend and former staff member kept a journal of the unique phrases that I would say from the pulpit.  You might find yourself laughing, agreeing, disagreeing, even wondering about my musing.... but I hope that when all has been posted that God will use it to speak to your heart and spirit.   So let the Greg...isms begin....