FASTING

Written by Kyle Rye on . Posted in Pulpit Minster

bcoc fastingIn Matthew 6 Jesus gave instructions regarding “when you give to the needy…” (Matthew 6:2), “when you pray…” (Matthew 6:5), and “when you fast…” (Matthew 6:16). He did not use the word “if” but “when” as if to indicate that He assumed His disciples would practice these exercises of faith. Generally speaking, we hold ourselves accountable to the expectation of giving and praying but not fasting. Yet, fasting was practiced by Jesus (Matthew 4:1-2) and the early church (Acts 13:2-3; 14:23). Thus, there must be a context in which it can be beneficial for our spiritual growth today. So, this week’s spiritual exercise is designed to educate and engage us in the discipline of fasting.

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Fasting

Time Assessment Worksheet

Written by Kyle Rye on . Posted in Pulpit Minster

selfevaluateIn Ephesians 5:15-17, Paul instructs us to "Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time.” Spiritual training requires us to be wise stewards of our time. So, one spiritual exercise in which we should engage is a time assessment. Utilize the attached exercise to determine whether or not you are wisely utilizing your time for your spiritual growth.

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Time Assessment Worksheet

DON’T FORGET TO EXERCISE

Written by Kyle Rye on . Posted in Pulpit Minster

bcoc excerciseThe Aqueduct of Segovia is one of the most well preserved elevated Roman aqueducts in the world. Likely constructed toward the end of first century or beginning of the second century CE during the reign of Emperor Domitian or Trajan, the aqueduct transported water from the Rio Frio River to the city of Segovia, Spain, spanning a distance of nearly eleven miles. The elevated portion of the aqueduct measures 2388 feet in length and is 93.5 feet tall at its maximum height. It consists of approximately 24,000 granite blocks fit together to make 165 arches, which are more than 30 feet tall. This amazing feat of engineering continued to carry water to the people of Segovia up until the 20th century. According to legend, it was during this time period that people decided that the aqueduct should be preserved rather than used. So, they laid modern pipes to bring drinking water to the town and allowed the aqueduct to rest as a treasured monument. But the unexpected happened. The aqueduct began to deteriorate. Apparently, the lack of water flowing through the aqueduct allowed the sun to dry out the rocks and mortar which then caused the structure to crumble. Now, the Aqueduct of Segovia is listed by the World Monuments Fund as a monument to watch due to its deteriorating state. Ultimately, the lack of use brought about the aqueduct’s demise.

DEVOTED TO EVANGELISM

Written by Kyle Rye on . Posted in Pulpit Minster

evangelismIn Acts 2:42-47 we are given a glimpse into the life of the first century church, and this section begins with the simple phrase “they devoted themselves to.” In the following verses we discover devotion to God’s Word, fellowship, the Lord’s Supper, and prayer, as well as an emphasis on benevolence, involvement, and worship. But there is one more detail about the first century church mentioned by Luke in this passage that should not be overlooked. The eighth and final detail we discover about the first century church is that “the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved” (Acts 2:47). In this simple statement, Luke acknowledged that the first century church was multiplying rather than stagnating, and such a statement is an indicator that the first century church was devoted to evangelism.