Meeting Times at 4th United Presbyterian Church

Cafe' Worship: 9:15 a.m. each Sunday in Gathering Hall (activities provided for children; coffee; snacks)
Adult Sunday School: 10 a.m.

Sunday Worship: 11 a.m.

Bible Study: each Thursday at 6 p.m.

Community Forum: last Thursday of each month at 6 p.m. with meal (no community forum in November, 2011)

About the 4th United Presbyterian Bible Blog

Posts on this blog are from me, Rev. George H. Waters, one of the two organizing co-pastors of 4th United Presbyterian Church. Our other organizing pastor was Rev. Sonya McAuley-Allen, who is now pastor of a church in Charlotte, N.C. Since June of 2011, Rev. Elizabeth Peterson has been our parish associate pastor for new church development. The earliest posts are sermon notes from the few I have typed the last two years. Then, there is a series of notes posted on the book of Romans. After that, it varies from week to week, sometimes church news, sometimes reflections on a happening, a passage of scripture, or even some pictures. This blog is meant to open the conversation we have going on in our church to others in our community.

The picture below is of our church's sanctuary, built in 1913.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Romans 4:23-25

"The words 'it was reckoned to him" were not written for Abraham alone, but also for us, to whom God will reckon righteousness - for those who believe in the One who raised Jesus from the dead. Jesus was delivered over to death for our sins and was raised to life that we might become righteous."

Our faith is in "the One who raised Jesus from the dead." Abraham is seen as the pioneer of faith, the one who hoped in the bare promise of God, a promise made when hope seemed impossible. A promise of a child to a couple where the man was very, very old, and where the woman was barren. But, Abraham is said to have trusted in this promise of God, and somehow catching on in the depths of his soul that God is the one who brings hope out of hopelessness, who brings life out of death - as Paul says, we know him as the God who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. This God was the one at work in Jesus, even in his death and in his raising up.

God turned the rejection of his Son by humanity into the means of our redemption. What humanity meant for evil, God turned to good. And, God also showed that his way of mercy and peace and truth in Jesus would not be defeated, not even by death at the hands of human beings. And, in raising Jesus, God showed that he indeed is God, and that he will not abandon this world to unholy authority, as God raised Jesus up as the head of humanity, the first born among a new creation through him. And, God showed that Jesus was right, true, good, and holy above all others, and he vindicated Jesus by raising him from the dead to the highest place of all - the right hand of God. Whatever that exactly means I don't know. I believe it means more than we can understand: more about Jesus, and more about the place of humanity in the life of God because of Jesus.

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