Weekly Links (4/28/2017)

“Christianity is not a religion that has its primary source in nature, or in experience, or even in an individual’s salvation. The source for Christianity is the Revealer, Jesus himself, who has much to say about nature, experience, and salvation. Our salvation is not something we can earn through works or that we deserve. Christianity comes to us as a gift from God.” [K. Scott Oliphint, Know Why You Believe (KNOW Series)]

by Cesar Vigil-Ruiz

Feliz Friday! Apologies for the late delay, but here are this week’s links!

  • Ligonier Ministries has produced a new album celebrating the Reformation called Post Tenebras, Lux, which is Latin for, “After Darkness, Light.” For a brief period, it’s free to download. Don’t miss out on this!
  • Do you know how to present the pro-life case for the unborn? Nathan Apodaca, from the Life Training Institute, gives three steps that has come to be called the ‘Ten Second Pro-Life Apologist.
  • Kevin DeYoung continues his theological primer series by giving a succinct summary of the term, ‘the 144,000‘ as found in Scripture. This is a crucial topic to spend some time on, especially if you talk with a Jehovah’s Witness about this area.
  • You may be surprised by this, but Netflix doesn’t consider Amazon or HBO to be its main competitor. Who are they truly competing against, they say? Sleep. We may need to rethink our priorities based on that sole observation, as Tim Challies does.
  • Professor David Murray tells 13 truths that a congregation needs to hear in light of their fallen pastor. This is worth reflecting, even if your pastor has not gone this route. This is also a reminder to pray for your pastor…right now.
  • What are the implications of the doctrine of definite (aka limited) atonement? Most think negatively of the teaching, but Jonathan Gibson gives two that can bring about godly change within the body of Christ. This is sound doctrine as it’s meant to be taught.
  • Randy Alcorn points us to an interview Tony Reinke did with Alastair Roberts, who offered 10 questions to evaluate the appropriate use of our smartphones. Chances are, you will not leave unscathed, so read carefully (especially if it’s on your smartphone!).
  • Is there a way to read the Bible in order to find God’s signature in it and through it? Sounds like a question John Piper is asking, which he has, and has an answer to. This can revolutionize your Bible reading. Let him help you see the implications of God’s purpose behind the reading of His Word.
  • Have you ever been told that you are a bad listener? That you talk too much? How can you grow in your listening skills? Timothy Brahm, of the Equal Rights Institute, gives a short answer that will train you to learn to allow space for the thinking pause. If you aren’t sure how this relates, watch or listen to his thoughts.
  • Sean McDowell (son of Josh McDowell, in case you were wondering) interviewed David Marshall on his newest bookJesus is No Myth! The Fingerprints of God on the Gospels. Whether you read the book or not, you will be fascinated with some of the questions he answers. Many of the topics he covers in his book is at the forefront of what you will hear whenever criticism of Christianity comes your way. You will not be disappointed.

That’s all for this week! Please pray for all the flocks that meet this week, and pray for God to be glorified in the lives of the saints this weekend. See you all on Sunday!

Soli Deo Gloria

Missions Monday #4 – Introducing the Czech Team

Patrick Cho

I have served as the senior pastor of Lighthouse Bible Church in San Diego since 2010. My wife Christine and I have been married for almost twelve years and have three beautiful children. I am thankful to have been involved with our summer missions trips to the Czech Republic since we first started going in 2000. Working with Meinolf Mellwig and the church there has been a wonderful blessing, and it is a tremendous joy and privilege to go back each year to build on the relationships we’ve established and to assist the Christian Church of Beroun in the work they’re doing to reach the Czech people. It is also exciting to work with this year’s team. I am looking forward to see how the Lord will use them and cause them to grow through our time together overseas. Some of my hobbies include singing, cooking, watching movies, and playing volleyball. One fun fact about me is that I smile a lot. Even when I honk at bad drivers (I’d like to think very, very rarely!), I do so with a smile.

Christine Cho

I am a stay-at-home mom to three adorable children. Eden is eight, Ezra is four, and Emma is currently four months. I’ve been married to Patrick for almost twelve amazing years! We have a lot of fun together as a family. Some of my interests include singing, playing / watching football, watching movies / shows with Patrick, and all things Disney. I also love fruit, animals, and bargain shopping. I have a Mary Kay business on the side but am a bit undisciplined with my own skincare. I think flowers are beautiful but don’t care to receive them. I don’t mind washing clothes but dislike folding and putting them away. I’m excited to go to the Czech Republic again to partner with the church in Beroun, see familiar faces, and meet new ones! Praying for the gospel to impact those who attend the English Camp!

Eden Cho

I am eight years old and currently in third grade. I enjoy riding my bike, going to the beach, doing coding on my school computer, taking taekwondo lessons, and watching Netflix. Some of my favorite shows are Pokemon, Ninjago, My Little Pony, Shopkins, and Home. I also love to read (especially spooky stories) and recently started reading the Harry Potter books. I love to eat carbs and dislike any kind of sauce. I have no problems singing and dancing in front of others, but acting gives me stage fright. I’m excited to go back to the Czech to see my friends and attend the English Camp!

Ezra Cho

I am four years old and currently attending Pre-K. I love going to school, playing with my friends, riding my Plasma Car, and playing ABC games. I know how to read but I’m not super interested in books. I’d much rather draw or write letters to people. My current obsession is whatever the latest movie I watched. I recently switched from a Moana obsession to Trolls. I love to eat fruit, sugary cereals, and noodles. I’m excited to be reunited with my friends in the Czech!

Emma Cho

I am four months old! I love to be held. I’m not the best daytime napper, but I make up for it by sleeping well at night. I enjoy making loud, high-pitched noises while Papa is trying to watch TV. I also enjoy sucking on my hands, playing with my toys, and recently discovered my feet! I haven’t tried solids yet, but my mommy is hoping I’ll enjoy it. I’m excited about my first plane ride and my first trip to the Czech Republic!

Stephen Rodgers

I currently work for a medical device company as a technical analyst and developer.  I’ve been a member at LBCSD for twelve years, and have been going on missions trips to the Czech Republic since 2008. I actually met the woman who would become my wife while on one of those trips, which was a bit of a surprise for both of us. God has used the Czech Republic and the church family there in profound ways in my life, and I always look forward to returning to work alongside them year after year.

Hana Rodgers

I have been a member at LBCSD for almost six years, but I have known the church and some of the church members since 2001 when I went to my first LBC English Camp in the Czech Republic as an unbeliever. In fact, I met some LBC members, whose children I have the privilege to teach in Sparklers now, when they were only dating! I am a third grade teacher at a Christian classical school, which is one of the many blessings God has graciously sent my way. I love the Czech Republic, the Czech people, and the Czech church and I am so grateful I have the opportunity to work alongside my Czech and American brothers and sisters to share the gospel there. I truly see it as a privilege and thank God for a church that considers missions important.

Curtis Yee

Hi! I am a graduating senior at UCSD studying both cognitive science and literature and I hope to find a career as a UX designer or journalist once I graduate (stark contrast, I know). I really enjoy photography and taking pictures with friends!

I’m extremely excited to serve in the Czech Republic with this year’s missions team. Recently I have been particularly convicted by the reality that the gospel is necessary for everyone, not only my friends and relatives and those in my social circles, but every single person on this earth. Truly caring for the lost means caring also for people whose lives and cultures and languages I had no connection with. This is why I chose to go on this missions trip, because even though I don’t know these people and may have little in common with them, we are all sinners in need of a savior.

Eugene Park

I’m currently a middle school math teacher in the San Diego Unified School District. It’s hard to believe, but this is my twentieth year teaching in the district. And I think I can honestly say I enjoy teaching more and more as each year goes by. One interesting thing about me is that I’m just about the most un-Korean Korean you’ll ever meet. I don’t like most Korean food, my Spanish is better than my Korean, and I don’t hang out on Convoy. This will be my fourth time going to the Czech Republic and one of the things I’m looking forward to seeing the people of the church again and hopefully support and encourage them in their ministry.

Hansol An

I am a husband to Angella and father of four boys, ranging in age from four to ten years old. I work for a professional services firm as a manager while also being active in business development. Though I don’t readily admit it, I used to be into comic books to the extent that in high school I contemplated becoming a comic book artist. God had other plans, and so did my very Korean mom who would never let that happen. In 2001 and 2003 I went to the Czech to serve as a member of the missions teams sent by LBC. Since that time, God has placed a strong desire in my heart to return but due to life circumstances I wasn’t able to until now. Now I’m looking forward to working with the Mellwigs again and the church in Beroun to reach the lost.

Richard Shin

An electrical engineer by trade, I currently work as a patent scientist for an intellectual property law firm, and I am planning to attend law school this fall. I have been at Lighthouse for almost eight years, and this is my second time going to the Czech Republic for missions. One fun fact about me is that I grew up in Korea for most of the 90s. So when people bring up a 90s pop culture reference, I usually smile and pretend like I know what they’re talking about, hoping they will move on. My cultural ineptitude notwithstanding, I am thrilled to go to the Czech Republic this summer because I get to partner with my Czech and German brothers and sisters in sharing the gospel to unbelievers. I am looking forward to reconnecting with the church in Beroun and enjoying our union in Christ!

Chelsea Preslar

Hi there, church family!  I am currently a full-time student and part time barista at my favorite San Diego coffee shop, Copa Vida.  Aside from my knack for pouring liquid art in the form of frothy caffeinated beverages, I love talking to strangers everywhere I go (sorry mom and dad).  Hearing about other people’s lives brings me tremendous curiosity and joy, and many opportunities to share about the life I have in Christ!

I am very excited to meet our church family in the Czech Republic, but more importantly, I’m looking forward to being a part of a team that works diligently to fulfill the Great Commission, to see lives turned over to God, and making our big church family just a little bit bigger!

Cindy Chu

During the day, I work as a business analyst at UCSF School of Medicine. At night, I am a mother to my fur-baby (dog). If you ever talk to a former roommate of mine, you will learn that I am an amazing storyteller…in my sleep. I am known for having one-sided conversations, telling jokes (while laughing), and giving instructions in my sleep. Unfortunately I have yet to remember any of my dreams. I am going on missions this year because I have a better story to tell (one that we cannot forget). This will be my fifth trip to the Czech Republic, but my reasons for going remain the same: proclaim the name of Jesus wherever I am (UCSF, LBCSJ, Beroun, etc.). In short, this is an opportunity to be faithful in another part of the world, continue building on relationships from past trips, and reflecting Christ through my life.

Joyce Kang

I teach second grade at a classical Christian school in Valencia and am also a graduate student at The Master’s University. One unique fact about me is that I am a health nut and yet I have a serious weakness for desserts, especially ice cream or anything with dark chocolate. This will be my fourth trip to the Czech Republic with LBC and my reason for returning is two-fold: I love Christ as well as the people there. The Lord has called us to make disciples wherever we are and summer missions is just another context in which we can practically live out this commandment. I’m excited for the opportunity to share the Good News with the people we’ll meet at the English Camp and for the time we’ll have to encourage the church there.

Joyce Tai

Hi! I’m currently a fourth-year at UCSD studying human biology. I’m planning to graduate this spring before starting to hopefully work as a nursing aid and stay in San Diego! One interesting fact about me is that I enjoy learning about coffee and tea brewing. For me, there wasn’t really any particular reason I wanted to do missions in specifically the Czech Republic, nor am I personally drawn to short term missions. As Joel James (Master’s seminary alumni) has said before, “Missions is your ecclesiology armed with a passport.” Likewise, I view this trip more as an extension, though different structure and location, of ministry here in San Diego, but I also have the specific vision of being an encouragement to LBC and the Mellwigs as we come alongside their church to support their work in making disciples of Christ throughout the nations. May our Lord’s name be proclaimed by all peoples.

Kara Kim

Hey y’all! My name is Kara Kim, and I just recently graduated from The Master’s University with a degree in Communications. I’ve been keeping busy with job hunting and wedding planning, and plan to get married in the spring of 2018. I have undying love for boba, white chocolate mochas, Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen, and the entire Harry Potter series. And even though I’ve been to the Czech Republic for summer mission trips more than a dozen times, I am returning this summer because I believe in the work Lighthouse and the church in Beroun are dedicating their time and energy toward. The precious relationship that’s developed over the past seventeen years is invaluable to me as I have grown up with the Mellwig family since I was four years old. I believe in the power of the Gospel, the saving grace of Jesus Christ, and the paramount importance of the church. As long as I have breath in me, I will share the good news of the Gospel with anyone who cares to listen, whether that is in the Czech Republic or any other country in the world.

Weekly Links (4/21/2017)

“We will never hunger or thirst if we are always coming and always believing in Christ. He is our sufficiency. Christ is the bread from heaven. We must feed on all of Christ, not just the parts that we happen to like. Christ is not the Savior of anyone unless He is their Lord as well.” (James R. White, Drawn By The Father)

by Cesar Vigil-Ruiz

Feliz Friday! Time has sure flown by, but not without some great links for your growth and benefit. Enjoy!

That’s all for this week! Please be in prayer for youth group and College Life, as both meet at church tonight for Bible study. See you all on Sunday!

Soli Deo Gloria

Renewing Our Minds for Rejoicing, Pt. 2 – “Think Reasonably”

by Pastor James Lee

“Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.  Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand;  do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.  Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” (Philippians 4:4-8)

Thinking well will mean thinking reasonably, gently, and patiently. After all, that’s a manifestation of growing Christlikeness, which is a fruit of contentment, as verse 5 says, “let your gentle spirit be known to everyone.” One translation says “sweet reasonableness.” It refers not just to an outward gentleness, but a genuinely gentle spirit.  If we’re thinking after Christ’s thoughts, we’re going to resolve to be gentle, patient, and reasonable. But if we’re not thinking to honor Christ, we’re not.  Even if life seems to be coming apart at the seams, reasonable thinking will remind us that God is sovereign and in absolute control, and nothing will be able to separate us from the love of God!  We think, “Come on, don’t you remember God is still on His throne, and He’s for you, not against you.”  It’s irrational to think otherwise.  And so you’re gracious and forgiving and lending careful thought to what’s in your heart. You’re thinking how to properly relate to others, not merely reacting out of the flesh, but responding by the Spirit. Reasonable thinking remembers God’s call upon His children to love as He loves us, to forgive as He’s forgiven us.

Thinking well means thinking reasonably as it pertains to our hearts. For example, the actual cause of discontentment and depression is not people or circumstances, it’s us, it’s our response. We’re not victims in this. The reality is that no situation automatically produces a result inside you. And if it did, then there are three blasphemous consequences: (1) then we can blame God who is in control of all situations, (2) call God a liar declaring that 1 Corinthians 10:13 wouldn’t be true, and (3) so that there is no hope for contentment. We might convince ourselves otherwise, but it’s our response to adversity that’s the difference. So it’s never the circumstances. And if it’s never the circumstances, then we can have joy in any situation.

Adversity can build character, or it can break it down into something ugly. It’s how we respond. Ideally, we would like to respond well from the start, but I’m speaking ultimately too. It reveals where we put our trust and satisfaction and worship.  We can allow it to make us better, or we can allow it to make us bitter. For example, sometimes if I’ve had a difficult day, I come home from work or a painful meeting, and I sadly take it out on my wife and kids. Even though what might have angered me is so trivial and inconsequential, or plainly not even wrong.  Either way, I’ve sinned against them. It might be that they didn’t clean up their toys, or that they’re too loud… but, then I sinfully get upset.  And then I react with a blameshifting, unloving heart.  Why?  Because of my wife and kids?  No.  The real answer isn’t that. So, why?  Because of me, because of what’s stirring violently in my heart and painfully entertained in my mind. But hopefully and thankfully, I come under the Spirit’s conviction… and my wife Sandy’s godly correction helps a bunch too.  And God’s Word drops like a hammer on my proud heart.  And reasonable thinking recalls God’s grace. Therefore, I’m looking for the kids to ask them forgiveness, I hope, in bearing fruit in keeping with genuine repentance. Daddy is confessing his sin, and giving them hugs and kisses, serving them with affection, because I treasure my relationship with them. Reasonable thinking puts on joy and self-giving, and puts off anger, arrogance, aloofness, anxiety, apathy, as being contrary to a life that is saturated in the glories of the gospel.

Sadly, that wasn’t happening in verse 2 with fellow believers Euodia and Syntyche, so much so that their stubborn rift had to be publicly addressed. With a gentle spirit, we’ll discover that there is no façade, no posturing, no insecurity, no anxiety about what people think of us, because God knows the worst of us and sent His Son for us!

Make sure that your character is free from greed, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, “I WILL NEVER DESERT YOU, NOR WILL I EVER FORSAKE YOU,” so that we confidently say, “THE LORD IS MY HELPER, I WILL NOT BE AFRAID. WHAT WILL MAN DO TO ME?” (Heb 13:5-6)

If we believe that, then we’re going to seek to be soft, winsome, vulnerable, healing, a relational red carpet, an attractive spirit, an inviting haven, not self-protecting, not fearful of getting hurt, but one that reaches out to the hurting in a spirit of humility and service.  Otherwise, our bitter discontentment with God becomes both self-destructive and other defiling.

Pursue peace with all men, and the sanctification without which no one will see the Lord.  See to it that no one comes short of the grace of God; that no root of bitterness springing up causes trouble, and by it many be defiled.” (Heb 12:14-15)

Unaddressed, people start walking on eggshells around us, wondering what little thing will set us off like a truckload of C4.  Then feeling guilty when it does happen, we withdraw even more, and we deepen our suffering, becoming more bitter and more lonely. It unleashes a cascade of sad consequences, until we lose our witness, lose friends, and lose our bearing. But the good news is the sufficiency of Christ that undergirds right thinking that leads to joy!

Missions Monday #3 – Why Czech Republic and Argentina?

by Pastor John Kim

Introduction

When Lighthouse Bible Church San Diego was being planted, the commitment to have a worldwide view toward ministry was something that we wanted to see integrated into the life of the church from the very beginning. While we had little in terms of resources and manpower, I really wanted to see our church have a heart for the world and invest into a long-term relationship with another church in some other country.

Czech Republic

Having attended the Master’s Seminary, I had a good number of friends and classmates who had become missionaries and were serving in different countries all over the world. I emailed many of them inquiring if there were any opportunities for us to partner in some way. Initially it was quite discouraging as no one seemed to have time… or were too busy… or already had what they felt was adequate. It seemed as though no one really had the time to consider such a relationship.

But one friend from my days at Grace Community Church responded with interest. His name was Peter Smith and along with his wife Sonya, who was a classmate of mine at Los Angeles Baptist High School, had gone to a town called Kladno, just outside of Prague to do missions work. I was pretty excited because I knew Peter to be a very enthusiastic and dedicated Christian and had watched him serve at Grace Church. I was especially encouraged by his character and heart for people. I had a pretty discouraging experience with a short term mission trip while in college, and so the importance of Christian character in the lives of pastors and missionaries really stood out to me as a requirement. After some initial discussions, Peter then brought up the opportunity to possibly partner with a friend of his in a city called Ostrava, which was close to the border of Poland on the eastern side of the Czech Republic. He shared that he was already partners with some pretty big churches at the time and while he was open to partnering together, he asked if I would be open to considering Ostrava because not too many people were interested in going out to that part of the country. It was a coal-mining industry and a place where criminals and problematic people were sent during the communist era, so it was definitely not a tourist destination compared to Prague. But the most important thing was the character of the missionary, and after Peter assured me that this missionary was a solid man of God. I thought it would be good to go on a scouting trip to meet the missionary and his family and get a chance to see what it was like.

So in the spring of 2000, I went to the Czech Republic for the first time. I definitely did not know much about the Czech Republic, other than that they had surrendered pretty early in World War II to Nazi Germany, and so the city of Prague was not bombed like so many other cities in Europe. After arriving in Prague, I went to a train station where I took a train to Ostrava. The city of Ostrava was the third largest city in the Czech Republic and I found out that there was very little evangelical presence there. So it was with great anticipation that I looked forward to meeting the missionary and his family.

I wasn’t too familiar with what the missionary looked like. He told me he would be wearing a beige jacket and had a beard. There were two stops that sounded very similar and so I was a bit confused. At the first stop I looked out the window and saw someone that seemed to fit the description, and so I stepped off the train and met Meinolf Mellwig for the very first time. I had been told that he was a German missionary who had come to the Czech Republic with his wife and children, and that they were in the same missions agency as my friend Peter. I anticipated meeting someone stoic and serious but hard-working and dedicated. My first interactions with Meinolf were very straightforward. I met his wife Martina who was very friendly and kind. They had a little girl, Anika who was almost two years old and they drove me around town to see the sights. They also had four other children who were in school – Katrin, Johannes, Matthias, and Lukas and lived in a three story home in a village called Polanka. I got to attend a church service which was held in a small room in some kind of building that they were renting. I found out it was a Brethren church, and that they had the Lord’s Supper every Sunday which was a little different since they used a common cup for everyone to share. Everyone seemed friendly and though I couldn’t understand anything they said, it was neat to meet them all for the first time and get a chance to fellowship with Czech believers.

So we decided that we would partner together in running an English camp that coming summer. It would be in the mountains at a hotel and we would plan to teach several levels of conversational English as well as plan sports and games. The evening meetings would be where we would sing Christian songs and then teach on different topics with an evangelistic purpose. Since it was the first time for both the Ostrava church and our church, it was looking to be a very interesting experience. Since both churches started around the same time in 1999, we figured that our churches were pretty much at the same stage of development so we would be able to grow together in this way.

The summer of 2000 provided the most incredible opportunity for our young church as a team of fifteen went to the Czech Republic for the first of what would turn out to be thirteen teams in seventeen years. We were introduced to a side of the Mellwig family that we would come to cherish, as they were not quite the stereotypical stoic German folks that we thought, but were quite funny and willing to pretty much do anything for the sake of ministry. The hotel was terrible, the service was horrible, but our time was memorable and we had numerous opportunities to share the gospel, build relationships, and truly enjoy a wonderful time partnering with the church in Ostrava.

In the years that followed, we were blessed by God to see a long-term relationship develop where the bond of the Holy Spirit was clearly seen as we grew in unity and like-mindedness in ministry. The dream of finding a long-term partnership came true and to this day we are blessed by the relationships that started back in 2000. The Mellwig family are some of the closest friends our family has, and they truly have become like family over the years as we stayed with them and they have come to visit us. The Mellwigs recently planted a new church in the city of Beroun in 2013, and we are now partnering with them there as they do the work of gospel ministry in that region.

Argentina

In 2004 I was given the opportunity to partner with some pastor friends at a conference in Argentina. Since I was the junior delegate in the party, I gave a couple of seminars but for the most part had the chance to observe and engage with the people I met. It was truly an enjoyable time as I was introduced to pastors from all over the country. One individual that was particularly interesting was a gentleman by the name of Eduardo Buldain. He was involved with a church-planting ministry that partnered with folks from the Word of Life Institute that was located just outside of Buenos Aires. After the conference I had a chance to talk with him about the opportunity to find another partner church where we could send short-term summer teams like we already were doing in the Czech Republic.

That was when we were introduced to Jorge Ahualle. It was quite a memorable trip in that Mike Chon (a fellow elder at Lighthouse San Diego and now at Lighthouse LA) and I went on a scouting trip to get to know the pastor and the church. Little did we know what an adventure it would be. We flew into Buenos Aires the spring of 2005 and upon arriving, we were met by Eduardo Buldain who informed me that I was to be speaking that evening as well as several times that weekend. I had not been told that I was preaching, and in an effort to travel light, I had not brought my laptop with me either. I thought he was kidding…he was not. We had another flight to take from Buenos Aires to Tucuman, which was the city where Pastor Jorge and the church were. They had planned a whole weekend of events including four preaching times. So I preached three times and Mike preached once. I recall in seminary that they had told us to always be ready to preach, and so I had memorized three sermons years earlier in case I ever needed them. That weekend I preached all three : one on the MVP of Lighthouse, another on the Peacemaker Pledge, and the last on the hand illustration from Fundamentals of the Faith regarding how to take in the Scriptures – hearing, reading, studying, memorizing, and meditating.

Pastor Jorge, his wife Norma, and son Josue welcomed us and we soon were embraced by the whole church. They showered us with love and food – this was the first time we had the famous empanadas (even in Argentina, Tucuman is known to make the best empanadas). We enjoyed Argentine beef and other meals with the church members, and I remember it was a joyous time as the people were very expressive and excited to see us. It was the first time that I was introduced to the Argentine custom of kissing each other on the cheek, and it was a pretty strange experience to have both men and women come at you and kiss you on the cheek. We also tried maté, the Argentine tea which would be passed around and shared from the same cup and metal straw. It was quite a contrast to our experiences in the Czech Republic, but at the same time it was such a blessing to know that we could be united in Christ even though we were from different cultures and spoke different languages.

The plan was for Lighthouse to send a team during the summer (which was their winter). They did street evangelism and they would go door to door and share the gospel as well as host events in the community where they would invite everyone to come and hear some presentations. We quickly realized as we set things up that there were challenges our work in the Czech Republic had not prepared us for.  Despite some initial issues (differences in doctrine, philosophy of ministry, and learning to work with translators), we were able to establish a very good relationship with the church in Tucuman and the first summer trip took place. While things were a bit crazy at times, the opportunity to partner with another young church provided great blessings in the coming years.

Conclusion

So that’s the story of how it happened. From our early desire to partner with like-minded churches around the world, the Lord providentially led us to two very different places: the Czech Republic and Argentina. And while our church has grown tremendously in terms of resources and manpower compared to those early days, one thing that has not changed is our longing to see all the LBC churches have a heart for the world that manifests as support for the local church…wherever that might happen to take us.

They Are They Which Testify Of Me

by Charles Haddon Spurgeon

John 5:39

Jesus Christ is the Alpha and Omega of the Bible. He is the constant theme of its sacred pages; from first to last they testify of Him. At the creation we at once discern Him as one of the sacred Trinity; we catch a glimpse of Him in the promise of the woman’s seed; we see Him typified in the ark of Noah; we walk with Abraham, as He sees Messiah’s day; we dwell in the tents of Isaac and Jacob, feeding upon the gracious promise; we hear the venerable Israel talking of Shiloh; and in the numerous types of the law, we find the Redeemer abundantly foreshadowed. Prophets and kings, priests and preachers, all look one way-they all stand as the cherubs did over the ark, desiring to look within, and to read the mystery of God’s great propitiation. Still more manifestly in the New Testament we find our Lord the one pervading subject. It is not an ingot here and there, or dust of gold thinly scattered, but here you stand upon a solid floor of gold; for the whole substance of the New Testament is Jesus crucified, and even its closing sentence is bejewelled with the Redeemer’s name.

We should always read Scripture in this light; we should consider the word to be as a mirror into which Christ looks down from heaven; and then we, looking into it, see His face reflected as in a glass-darkly, it is true, but still in such a way as to be a blessed preparation for seeing Him as we shall see Him face to face. This volume contains Jesus Christ’s letters to us, perfumed by His love. These pages are the garments of our King, and they all smell of myrrh, and aloes, and cassia. Scripture is the royal chariot in which Jesus rides, and it is paved with love for the daughters of Jerusalem. The Scriptures are the swaddling bands of the holy child Jesus; unroll them and you find your Saviour. The quintessence of the word of God is Christ.

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Weekly Links (4/14/2017)

“It was not nails that held Jesus to that wretched cross; it was his unqualified resolution, out of love for his Father, to do his Father’s will—and, within that framework, it was his love for sinners like me. He really could not save himself.” (D. A. Carson, Scandalous: The Cross and Resurrection of Jesus)

by Cesar Vigil-Ruiz

Feliz Good Friday! In light of today’s observance of and remembrance of our Lord, Jesus Christ, dying on the cross, this week I want to bring to your attention some links that will focus our eyes on the One who gave His life voluntarily to redeem us from the consequences and power of sin. So, here they are:

That’s all for this week! Please be in prayer for tonight’s Good Friday service, and that the gospel be proclaimed to all who need it. Please come if you don’t have a church to visit tonight or on Resurrection Sunday. See you all there!

Soli Deo Gloria