Quiet Time with Jesus

Calvary BC, Pollworkers 012We invite you to worship with us at Calvary Baptist Church, 110 N. McMullen Booth Road, Clearwater, Florida 33759. Phone: 727-441-1581 or visit http://www.Calvary.us.  CBC is a Southern Baptist Church. William Rice is the Senior Pastor. CBC also has beach baptisms at Sand Key Park during the year for new believers in Christ.

The church’s weekly devotion guide is available at http://www.Calvary.us/DevotionGuide.

On July 4th weekend,  Senior Pastor William Rice’s message was titled “A Better Country” based on Hebrews 11:13-16 on Sunday morning.  We also recommend reading Hebrews 12: 1-2.  This sermon is part of  the series, “We Believe, A Call to Faith and Freedom.”

Here is the accompanying Message Notes:

A Better Country – Hebrews 11:13-16

“But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.” –Hebrews 11:16 ESV

How we will live as a people of faith in a culture that rejects God:

1. We must recognize a Present Reality.

“These all died in faith, not having received the things promised, but having seen them and greeted them from afar, and having acknowledged that they were strangers and exiles on the earth.” –Hebrews 11:13 ESV

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” –John 16:33 NIV

This world is not our home and we shouldn’t expect it to act that way.

2. We must live for an Eternal Destiny.

“But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city.” –Hebrews 11:16, ESV

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“How do we live in a world that is hostile to our faith?” Pastor Rice said. Rice described the people in the book of Hebrews as believers in Christ who died for their faith.  The author of Hebrews says these people were seeking a better country and were considered aliens and strangers.  They were Christ followers, but not at home, Pastor Rice said.

“We must acknowledge we are not at home in this world, in this country,” Pastor Rice said.

Pastor Rice explained that America’s founders were Pilgrims and Puritans, dissidents and harassed in the country where they came from.

“They came to a new country to seek religious freedom….the freedom they sought most of all,” Pastor Rice said.

In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court’s historic ruling legalizing same-sex marriage in all states, Pastor Rice says “Religious freedom is now more in peril.” Pastor Rice warned that Christian schools, colleges, universities, mission boards and faith-based groups may face losing their tax-exempt status.

Pastor Rice said Calvary Baptist Church in Clearwater pays millions in local, state and federal taxes and advises everyone to pay their taxes.

“If a church can be taxed by the government, government can control or manipulate the church. It is disastrous to religious freedom,” Pastor Rice said during the sermon.

Pastor Rice also pointed out the U.S. Constitution’s First Amendment addresses religious freedom and is designed to limit the government’s interference with religious freedom.

“We are facing a war in religious freedom,” Pastor Rice said.

“If religious liberty, religious freedom goes, every freedom goes,” Pastor Rice said.

“Jesus is the highest gift….We must forgive and love our enemies….All have been delivered by God’s grace with the power of the Cross….The Gospel marches on…..Our eyes are on a heavenly kingdom,” Pastor Rice said.

 

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