Thursday, December 4, 2014

Alas, What a Bauble is Human Greatness

A good reminder from Pastor Mark Dever for those who work in and around politics. Taken from his message on Revelation 4-5 (Beginning at 17:30).

"The Bible tells us that this God is holy. He is completely good, and right, and pure. Now why would God give John such a vision of Himself and His glory? Because John needed to know that neither the Roman Emperor, nor His armies, were truly ultimate. And so Jesus Christ the eternal Son of God gives this revelation to John and John is shown that this One is more glorious than any regional governor who could sentence him to Patmos or even execute fellow Christians, and more glorious than any ruler, even the Roman emperor himself. Brothers and sisters we live in a town (Washington D.C.) which works on being respecters of persons, fearers of men, cultivators of the good opinions of others. It is good for people like us to be reminded that however glorious the office of chancellor of the public school system, or Mayor of D.C., or legislative director, or chief of staff, or senior partner, or owner, or senator, or governor, or President of the United States, it is nothing compared to the glory of this God. It is nothing! We fall into dreams where we imagine other creatures are so glorious. 

Full-length portrait in oils of a clean-shaven young man in eighteenth century dress: gold jacket and breeches, ermine cloak, powdered wig, white stockings, and buckled shoes.
As John Wesley was reflecting on being at a state address of a monarch opening parliament and he recalled, ‘I was in the robe chamber adjoining to the House of Lords when the king put on his robes. His brow was much furrowed with age and quite clouded with care. Is this all the world can give, even to a king? All the grandeur it can afford? A blanket of ermine around his shoulders so heavy and cumbersome he can scarcely move under it? A huge heap of borrowed hair, with a few plates of gold and glittering stones upon his head? Alas what a bauble is human greatness. And even this will not endure.'"

Pastor Mark Dever. Capitol Hill Baptist Church. The Lion is Revealed - Revelation 4-5. March 29, 2009.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Governors, Kings, Caesar, and Glory

Great sermon by Matt Chandler (The Village Church, Dallas, Texas) on Paul's passion to share the gospel and his opportunity to share it with government leaders.

Governors, Kings, Caesar, and Glory.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Capitol Bible Study: "When the Innocent is Condemned..."

25 Years in Prison for a Crime He Didn’t Commit.


That’s what happened to Michael Morton of Williamson County, Texas. In 1986 his wife Christine was brutally murdered in front of their three year old son. Even though he was at work at the time, authorities still suspected him and he was arrested, tried, convicted, and sentenced to life in prison. Many years later it was discovered that the prosecutor had suppressed evidence that may have shown his innocence. After the evidence was tested for DNA it proved Morton was not guilty and soon another violent criminal was convicted of his wife’s murder. In 2011, after nearly 25 years in prison, Morton was released from prison.

Whenever we hear an account such as this, we are saddened and angered. However this is just a small illustration that might help us understand the message of the gospel. Jesus Christ, who was completely innocent, was convicted and paid the ultimate sentence for crimes He did not commit. He suffered and died and bore the wrath and punishment for OUR crimes – for our sin against a Holy God. Rather than being saddened or angered that the Innocent One was so brutally punished for crimes He did not commit, we rejoice in grace and mercy that God has shown to us through Christ!

Right after His baptism, Jesus passed a test that proved His innocence and sinlessness. This was His temptation by Satan in the wilderness. Jesus proved His innocence and worthiness to become the perfect sacrifice for our sin. This is the subject of this week’s study at the West Virginia capitol as we consider “When the Innocent is Condemned…
  • Pray that the legislators, elected officials, lobbyists, and staff who attend the study or who read the notes as they are distributed throughout the statehouse might understand the enormity of what Christ did for us.
  • Pray that each of might grow in our love and worship for Christ as consider the Innocent who was condemned in our place.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Capitol Bible Study: "Inauguration Day"

Inauguration and swearing in ceremonies are a big deal in the West Virginia capitol. At these events our leaders are formally recognized and approved to perform the duties of their offices. We see that the higher the office, the more dignified and elaborate are these ceremonies.

At Jesus' baptism by John we see Jesus' "Inauguration Day" as He is approved by the Father and empowered by the Holy Spirit to begin the work God had given Him to do. This was the work of living a life of perfect obedience, suffering and dying on the cross, and rising again. All this done on our behalf so that our sin might be laid upon Him and His obedience credited to us.

This is the topic of this week's Bible study at the West Virginia capitol. You can download the notes for our Bible study here.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Capitol Bible Study: "The People's Business & The Father's Business"

From this week's Bible study at the West Virginia Capitol:
Jesus’ utmost commitment was to be about the Father’s business – that of redeeming sinful people. As followers of Christ we are called to be about our Father’s business as well. In the midst of all the “people’s business” at the capitol, it is easy to lose sight of the ultimate business of the Father. We may get caught up in standing for certain issues and fighting for particular legislation and forget that what every person REALLY needs is to understand what Jesus has done on the cross. We should let Jesus’ example be a reminder to constantly seek to be about the Father’s business even as we conduct the people’s business in the capitol.

Download the complete study here.