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New Horizons

March, 2000: Home Missions Today

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Contents

New Home Mission Works, Spring 2000

Welcome, Reformation OPC

One Sunday afternoon in June 1998, a small group gathered in the home of Frank and Jo Ann Galneder. They were waiting for the fire of God—not the blessing of the Holy Spirit, but the fire of judgment. Fueling their fears was the question, "Who are we to hold a worship service? No minister was present. No church court had authorized this gathering. But overcoming their hesitation was the conviction that they needed to worship the Lord in spirit and in truth. Read more

When Not to Build

When a suburban Philadelphia congregation asked me to design a thousand-seat sanctuary for them, that's exactly what I intended to do. They had called me for the usual reasons: their sanctuary was full, and they were running out of educational space. It was time to build.

To determine how best to design their facility, I first met with the church board for four hours on a Saturday morning. Then I spent several days studying the church's ministries, finances, and use of facilities. Finally, I felt like I had the facts I needed to draft my proposal. Read more

Chaplains: Missionaries to the United States

The work of a military chaplain closely resembles the ministry of a missionary. The military environment is much like a foreign culture. The chaplain and his family must "learn the soldier's language and adjust to the short-term relationships of this mobile lifestyle, even as they seek to redeem the time for the sake of the gospel.

A chaplain must be ordained and endorsed by his particular denomination to the military. A chaplain ministers in the Army according to the beliefs and doctrines of his ordaining church. He preaches and counsels according to his own conscience without restraint from the military. However, part of a chaplain's job is to provide opportunity for each soldier to enjoy the freedom to practice his own religion, whatever that may be. Read more

Doctrine 101: The Deity of Christ

Our religion has long been called Christianity (Acts 11:26). Why is it not called Biblianity or Churchianity, since the Bible and the church are so important to us? Because Jesus Christ is the most important element of our faith. He is called "the author and perfecter of our faith" (Heb. 12:2), and is both the head of the church (Col. 1:18) and its chief cornerstone (Eph. 2:20). He is the one who bought us with his own blood (Acts 20:28) and to whom, then, we belong (Rom. 14:7-9).

No Christianity can be any greater than the Christ in whom it believes. It cannot be any more attractive, useful, or viable than the one on whom it is established. As a mountain cannot rise any higher than the mass of rock that constitutes it, so Christianity cannot ascend an inch beyond the substance of its Rock—Jesus Christ (Pss. 19:14; 61:2; 1 Cor. 10:4; 1 Pet. 2:6-8). No Christianity can offer more nourishment and hope to the world than what can actually be found in its Christ. So, carefully weighing the claims of Jesus will forever remain the great duty of all who would study or consider Christianity. Read more

 
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