PRAISE GOD IT’S MONDAY!
A WEEKLY ‘WWW (world-wide word) OF ENCOURAGEMENT’
TO THOSE IN MINISTRY

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Issue No: 508     Published: 18 Jul 2011

HOW 'SAVED' ARE WE?

Over the next few weeks we are going to look at some issues that go to the very core of our faith and ministry. I trust you will be both challenged and encouraged to think, and act, as I have been, since the Lord put these things on my mind to share with you.

Today's question is, "How 'saved' are we?"

Yes David, I am saved! I believe in God. I have said the 'Sinners Prayer'. My sins have been forgiven. I go to church. I live a good life - well, most of the time. I do some work for the Lord. I believe I am going to heaven when I die. Of course, I am saved!

But are you? But an I?

You see, salvation is a process, not an event. Let's see how it works.

1. THE DECISION: To become a follower of Jesus, we do need to make the decision to do so and take the step of baptism. Jesus told us.....

15 He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. 16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. (Mark 16:15-16)

Repentance is an integral requirement of salvation, as taught by both John the Baptist and Jesus. When Jesus sent out the 12 disciples to bring His message to the people.....

12 They went out and preached that people should repent. (Mark 6:12)

The baptism of Jesus, further to that of John the Baptist, also included the baptism of the Holy Spirit. As Paul explained.....

While Apollos was at Corinth, Paul took the road through the interior and arrived at Ephesus. There he found some disciples 2 and asked them, “Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you believed?” They answered, “No, we have not even heard that there is a Holy Spirit.” 3 So Paul asked, “Then what baptism did you receive?” “John’s baptism,” they replied. 4 Paul said, “John’s baptism was a baptism of repentance. He told the people to believe in the one coming after him, that is, in Jesus.” 5 On hearing this, they were baptized into the name of the Lord Jesus. 6 When Paul placed his hands on them, the Holy Spirit came on them, and they spoke in tongues and prophesied. (Acts:19:1-6)

There is one further requirement for salvation however, the lordship of Jesus in our life.

9 That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. (Romans 10:9)

The 5 steps of our initial decision are belief, repentance, twin baptisms (water and Holy Spirit) and the lordship of Jesus in our life. Saying the (unbiblical) 'Sinners Prayer', according to the Word then, is insufficient, unless accompanied by action!

2. RETAINING OUR SALVATION: There is real truth in the saying, 'actions speak louder than words'. For this statement sums up the Jewish, as opposed to the Greek understanding, of words spoken and commitments made. In Jewish culture, actions reflect beliefs! But in our culture we separate the two, which ultimately, can cost us our salvation!

The heart of most of the problems in the church today is that we don't live what we believe! A new David's Doodling! Thank you Lord.

Jesus warned us of this, particularly in the end times in which we now live.

9 “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. 10 At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, 11 and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. 12 Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, 13 but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. (Matthew 24:9-13)

To the church in Laodicea, a picture of today's final church before the return of Jesus, He said.....

15 I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! 16 So, because you are lukewarm—neither hot nor cold—I am about to spit you out of my mouth. 17 You say, ‘I am rich; I have acquired wealth and do not need a thing.’ But you do not realize that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind and naked. (Revelation 3:15-17)

The reality is, words are not enough!

21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. (Matthew 7:21)

Is the situation impossible? No, there is hope for me, for you, and for the church.....

19 Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest, and repent. 20 Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me. (Revelation 3:19-20)

We need to earnestly repent now and submit ourselves to the will of the Father in our lives today! And every day!

The true question is not 'how saved are we', but, 'how submitted are we'? For submission, for obedience to the Father, is the true measure of our salvation.

May we truly 'walk with Jesus' today.

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FROM THE WORD

Jesus Sends Out the Twelve

"Then Jesus went around teaching from village to village. Calling the Twelve to him, he sent them out two by two and gave them authority over evil spirits. These were his instructions: “Take nothing for the journey except a staff—no bread, no bag, no money in your belts. Wear sandals but not an extra tunic. Whenever you enter a house, stay there until you leave that town. And if any place will not welcome you or listen to you, shake the dust off your feet when you leave, as a testimony against them.” They went out and preached that people should repent. They drove out many demons and anointed many sick people with oil and healed them." (Mark 6:6b-13)

"Brothers, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for the Israelites is that they may be saved. For I can testify about them that they are zealous for God, but their zeal is not based on knowledge. Since they did not know the righteousness that comes from God and sought to establish their own, they did not submit to God’s righteousness. Christ is the end of the law so that there may be righteousness for everyone who believes. Moses describes in this way the righteousness that is by the law: “The man who does these things will live by them.” But the righteousness that is by faith says: “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’” (that is, to bring Christ down) “or ‘Who will descend into the deep?’” (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead). But what does it say? “The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,” that is, the word of faith we are proclaiming: That if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. As the Scripture says, “Anyone who trusts in him will never be put to shame.” For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him, for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”" (Romans 10:1-13)

Signs of the End of the Age

"Jesus left the temple and was walking away when his disciples came up to him to call his attention to its buildings. “Do you see all these things?” he asked. “I tell you the truth, not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.” As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately. “Tell us,” they said, “when will this happen, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” Jesus answered: “Watch out that no one deceives you. For many will come in my name, claiming, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will deceive many. You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains. “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, but he who stands firm to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. “So when you see standing in the holy place ‘the abomination that causes desolation,’ spoken of through the prophet Daniel—let the reader understand— then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains. Let no one on the roof of his house go down to take anything out of the house. Let no one in the field go back to get his cloak. How dreadful it will be in those days for pregnant women and nursing mothers! Pray that your flight will not take place in winter or on the Sabbath. For then there will be great distress, unequaled from the beginning of the world until now—and never to be equaled again. If those days had not been cut short, no one would survive, but for the sake of the elect those days will be shortened. At that time if anyone says to you, ‘Look, here is the Christ!’ or, ‘There he is!’ do not believe it. For false Christs and false prophets will appear and perform great signs and miracles to deceive even the elect—if that were possible. See, I have told you ahead of time." (Matthew 24:1-25)

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DAVID'S DOODLINGS

DARKNESS AND LIGHT

408. The only way to turn off darkness is to switch on the light.

409. The laws of both Nature and the Spirit reveal that light will always penetrate darkness.

410. Most people try to switch off darkness when in reality, they need to turn on the light.

411. There is nowhere so dark that it cannot be penetrated by light.

412. So often we don't appreciate the true value of light until we find ourselves in darkness.

413. Light doesn't shine brightly through a dirty window.

414. We must pull back the curtains to let light shine into the room of our life.

415. Light and darkness cannot co-exist. The one will always mingle with the other.

416. There must always be a barrier to separate light and darkness.

417. There are only two ways to turn light into darkness - building walls to exclude the light, or turning the light off at its source. The second is by far the easiest.

1276. For the darker the darkness, the brighter the light will be seen that shines within it.

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CRANWELLS CARTOONS

3 But Jonah ran away from the LORD and headed for Tarshish. He went down to Joppa, where he found a ship bound for that port. After paying the fare, he went aboard and sailed for Tarshish to flee from the LORD. 4 Then the LORD sent a great wind on the sea, and such a violent storm arose that the ship threatened to break up. 5 All the sailors were afraid and each cried out to his own god. And they threw the cargo into the sea to lighten the ship. But Jonah had gone below deck, where he lay down and fell into a deep sleep. 6 The captain went to him and said, “How can you sleep? Get up and call on your god! Maybe he will take notice of us, and we will not perish.” 7 Then the sailors said to each other, “Come, let us cast lots to find out who is responsible for this calamity.” They cast lots and the lot fell on Jonah. (Jonah 1:3-7)



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TUESDAY TEACHINGS

THIS WEEK: THE WAY OF HOLINESS
PART 5 OF 9
APPLICATION OF HOLINESS TO OUR LIVES (Revelation 12:11)


Occasionally, the Lord uses a verse to summarise His teachings. We have such a verse in Revelations 12:11, spoken by Jesus through the apostle John.

The verse succinctly sums up 'the Way' of our Christian walk, and its result - overcoming satan. For satan can only be overcome by the holy. Those who have put the ways of man aside to 100% walk in the ways of God.

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LAUGHING AT OURSELVES

***Blessed are those who can laugh at themselves for they shall never cease to be amused***

*** "Those who can't laugh at themselves leave the job to others." ***

365. ABSENT?
A Sunday school teacher challenged her children to take some time on Sunday afternoon to write a letter to God. They were to bring back their letter the following Sunday. One little boy wrote: "Dear God, we had a good time at church today. Wish You could have been there."

364. MULTIPLE OUTLETS
On vacation with her family in Montana, a mother drove her van past a church in a small town and pointing to it, told the children that it was St. Francis' Church.

"It must be a franchise," her eight-year-old son said. "We've got one of those in our town too."

363. COME OUT
Our children's Sunday School classes were presenting their end of the year program for the congregation - telling about the life of Jesus.

When it came to the part about Jesus' miracles, one little boy said, "Yes, Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead!" The teacher urged him to tell us more.

He said, "Well, Jesus told them to open the tomb, and then He said, 'Lazarus, come out!' And it's a good thing he didn't just say 'Come out!' because there would have been a stampede of dead guys."

362. NO LONGER HOME
After the fall in Garden of Eden, Adam was walking with his sons Cain and Abel.

They passed by the ruins of the Garden of Eden. One of the boys asked, "What's that?"

Adam replied, "Boys, that's where your mother ate us out of house and home."

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FACTS FOR FUN

LAST WEEKS QUESTION: Is it true that turtles don't age?

ANSWER: It is strange, but true. After reaching maturity, a turtle's body doesn't continue to age biologically. They manifest what is known as 'negligible senescence', that is they increase in chronological age without exhibiting increased mortality. To put it simply: they continue to grow and reproduce after reaching maturity, but show no evidence of 'senescence', a fancy word for 'aging'. Turtles do die, of course. Eventually, they'll succumb to disease, injury, or predators - but there have been reports of turtles living for more than 100 to 200 years! (Need all this extra time to get places.)

THIS WEEK'S QUESTION: Are fish more abundant in cold ocean water or warm water?
Answer Next Week.

SOME FUN FACTS

43. BOTTLE????
According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration statistics, two out of five women in America dye their hair. (But no-ones meant to know this!)

44. JUST PEANUTS
The Jif plant in Lexington, Kentucky, is reportedly the largest peanut butter factory in the world. (Not just ‘peanuts’ in size though!)

45. AEROPLANE COWBOYS
In the film industry, a ‘chute cowboy’ is a slang expression for the experienced parachutists that either perform or assist with stunts involving parachutes. (What goes up, must come down – slowly!)

A WORD PUZZLE FOR YOU

Make another word from this word using all the letters.

SNIGGER

Answer at the end of A David Musing

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BIBLE QUESTION - BIRDS AND CREEPING THINGS

17) They will 'soar on wings like eagles':

A - Those who hope in the LORD
B - Those who follow the truth
C - Those who pray without ceasing
D - Those who reject evildoers

Source: www.biblequizzes.com

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IF ONLY I'D THOUGHT OF IT!

"""OTHER'S SAYINGS TO ENLIGHTEN, AMUSE, OR BEMUSE"""

RANDOM ACTS of THINKING

!!!!!!! If you cross a zebra with a chicken, will you get an egg with a bar code?


!!!!!! Organized people are just too lazy to look for things.

!!!!! My wife and I took a massage class, but she didn't enjoy my participation. Apparently I rub her the wrong way.

!!!! Some bankers are generous to a vault.

!!! The only book I need to tell me where I should go on vacation is my checkbook.

!! Is a hypocrite someone who writes a book on atheism and prays it will sell?

! I actually have too much will power. It's won't power that's in short supply.

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LIFE'S A LAUGH

105. FOLLOWED!
Before shipping out to Europe with the Army Air Corps during World War II, my father loaned his buddy $20.00. The two were assigned to different units and lost touch. Months later, my father's plane was shot down. Bleeding from shrapnel wounds, he bailed out and was greeted by German soldiers who took him as a prisoner. After a long train ride, little food, and days of forced marching, he arrived at his assigned stalag.

As he entered the compound, he heard a familiar voice. "You followed me all the way here for a measly $20.00?"

106. BEEP
A friend of ours was puzzled by the odd messages left on his answering machine. Day after day, friends and family would talk and then say, "Beep."

He discovered the reason for the joke when he decided to listen to his greeting. "Hi," it said. "I'm not in right now, so please leave a beep after the message."

107. WASH LAWYERS' MOUTHS OUT WITH SOAP
When it comes to frivolous lawsuits, fact can truly be stranger than fiction. Example:
The Bonaventure Town Center Club in Weston, Fla. has banned soap in its showers. Why? Lo and behold, people can slip in the shower and then file lawsuits. As the club's executive director, Bob Fedderwitz, has said, "We've been sued. We've settled. We've lost a lot of money."

So the club has simply turned its showers into soap-free zones. Not only has bar soap
been banned but also body wash, shampoo, hair conditioner and even shaving cream.
No wonder Americans are increasingly lathered up about lawyers.

108. JUNK MAIL
I do the water and sewer billing for a small city in Washington State. Customers complained about our postcard-sized bills--which they said looked too much like junk mail. So we decided to start sending full-sized bills in envelopes. The month before the switch, I had a note printed on the cards, announcing the change.

Two days later, I heard someone yelling at our receptionist, "Is this some kind of joke?" When the customer threw his bill upon the desk, I saw his point. The note was printed, "Coming soon! New Larger Bills!"

109. NO CHARGE
When I had a job at the photo-developing counter of a pharmacy, the film was sometimes developed incorrectly. If this occurred, we did not charge our customers. Once a man came to pick up his pictures, which were marked $0.00, indicating that not one of them had turned out right.

The customer asked to see the photos, and when I noticed the odd splotches of color all over the pictures, I apologized profusely.

"Oh, no, these are fine," he said happily. "I'm a microbiologist, and these are my bacteria cultures."

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BIBLE TRIVIA (Famous Words and Phrases)

A DROP IN THE BUCKET

Generally refers to a small, or meaningless amount. These words come straight from Isaiah 40:15 where the Lord says, "the nations are a drop in the bucket."

Adapted from: '1001 Surprising Things You Should Know About The Bible' MacGregor & Prys

An Awakening: Youth Revive Japan's Dying Church

By Lucille Talusan
CBN News Asia Correspondent

TOKYO -- Whether they're in church or standing on a street corner, the members of Grace Tokyo Church loudly sing their songs of praise.

The congregation's young people are part of a new youth movement that many Japanese Christians hope will revive Japan's churches.

Philippines native Glen Nabarrete, who serves as the head pastor at Grace Tokyo, was born and raised in Hawaii. He and his family answered God's call to Japan in 1992.

A Dying Church?

The church in Japan is getting smaller every day. The average Japanese church has 30 people and many have less than 10 members.

Church historian Masakazu Suzuki says traditional churches are dying out.

"After the war, a lot of American GI's who came to Japan are Christians and later came back to Japan as missionaries. So, after the war, the Japanese churches grew a lot," Suzuki told CBN News.

"Now after 50, 60 years, a lot of pastors are getting older, facing retirement," he said. "Also many members are getting older too."

Like most Christians, Suzuki believes God is using the recent disasters to open the hearts of the Japanese people.

"In Christian evacuation centers, some of the aged people, five or six died. Six to seven old people died. But through their love and unity, some family members who visit them become Christian. More than 15 of them got baptized last month," Suzuki said.

Spiritual Awakening

There have been more than 1,200 aftershocks since the March 11 earthquake and there could be more, but Christians here are praying for another kind of aftershock and that is the spiritual awakening of the Japanese people.

Businessman Yuto Matsumoto saw how the power of God restored his marriage after a divorce.

"I worked too hard, not too much attention for my family," Matsumoto said.

His Christian daughter visited him in New York where he moved, and took him to watch the film "Passion of the Christ" on Easter.

Later, back in Japan, she brought him to the church their family has been attending since converting to Christianity.

"During the preaching, I couldn't stop crying. I don't know why," Matsumoto recalled. "Right after the service, I went to Pastor Scott and asked him how I can become a Christian. That was April 2004. I accepted Jesus as Lord. It was the beginning of my new life."

Two years ago, Matsumoto re-married Takako, his ex-wife. Today, they have a harmonious relationship with Christ at the center of their marriage.

He also shares his faith with his colleagues at work.

"It's very tough especially for the businessman because Japanese businessmen were taught to believe in his power, or on himself," he said.

Nevertheless, Matsumoto invites his co-worker to visit grace Tokyo church where he serves as an interpreter.

The Joy of God

Pastor Nabarrete and his family answered God's call to Japan in 1992.

"I believe in this church," Nabarrete said about Grace Tokyo.

"One of the things we have that a lot of Japanese churches don't have is a lot of joy and a lot of laughter," he told CBN News. "I think that's one quality that God wants to bring to this nation. There is the reality of joy in serving God."

"And we also cater to young people," he added. "We let the young people step up, do preaching. Young people love it they want to participate for the growth of the church."

The youth go out of their way to spread God's love, singing gospel songs on the street, even when reprimanded by the police.

"The idea is just praise and worship on the street and let God move and touch people's lives. Someone stands near; we talk to them and invite them to church," Grace Tokyo youth leader Gerwin Echegoyen said.

"When I first moved in 1992, church growth was very small," Nabarrete said. "Our church at Yokohama Grace Bible Church was about 30 people in 10 years. So for us Tokyo Bible, two years with 60 people is phenomenal. God has been gracious to us here."

The young Christians hope that through their involvement, Japan's older churches can be made young again -- and other dying churches can be reborn.

DAVID'S DOWNLOAD

A REVELATION OF……. 3 KINGDOM AGES OF GOD

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WAXING LYRICAL

This poem arose out of the unexpected, untimely death of a very good friend's daughter. Why God, why!

But still, life continues on for us who are left, until our turn comes to meet our maker.

GONE!

Life's short.
Death's caught.
Comes to all.
Small and tall.

It's good to grieve one who did leave,
But life goes on, loved one gone.
How can we cope - sit round and mope?
From dust to dust, in God we trust.

He seems far away,
As we try to pray!
"Where are you now Lord!
You've broken the cord!"

"I am still here for you, my child,
Know that, with Me, you're wild.
But death, it will ever be,
Until earth, is sin free.

Look up, look up, my son,
Into my arms, do now run,
I am always here for you,
Believe it - it is true.

I so understand your sorrow,
As in My path you do follow.
Gave my Son to die for you,
Grief was in My heart, too.

My ways are different to yours,
Yes, mine is a greater cause.
But with death comes eternal life,
No more worry, no more strife...
When your life you do put in my hand,
With me, for eternity, will you stand.

In Jesus now, you must surely rest,
It's through Him, you pass the test.

Come, my friend, rest in my embrace,
Yes, I am with you, in life's race.
One day too, you will reach the finishing line,
I'll meet you there - your hand clasped in mine."

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A DAVID MUSING

Life for the next fortnight will be hugely busy as we shift our Napier Seekers Megamart store and Head Office to new premises. As I have mentioned previously, the shift is necessary because our main competitor purchased the building we are currently based in and immediately put up our rent by 50%, completely unreasonable in these recessionary times.

Financially, life is tough, right around the world, at the present time. People are having to reassess their priorities in life. Credit cards, so loved by a generation, are now being cut up, as people come to understand that money is not free, nor does it grow on a tree. Excessive consumption, for so long enjoyed by the Western world, is starting to be seen as being unsustainable into the future through the drain on the world's resources of an ever increasing population wanting what we have, and prepared to work harder than us to get it.

Growing population too, combined with changes in weather patterns, is bringing about floods and famines on an increasing basis. The current drought in Northern Kenya, Somalia and into Ethiopia is but one example of this. How helpless I feel when I hear from friends there of the situation they are facing, for we are unable to assist them due to tougher times here, where our business is in survival mode.

Times such as these make us re-evaluate our priorities. Will we get more into God, or give up on Him, when the going gets tough? People are making decisions both ways.

How foundational to my life, to your life, is our faith in Jesus? Are we fair weather Christians, seeking a 'Father Christmas god' to make us happy and wealthy, or have we truly made Jesus Lord of our life?

These times will really find us out!

Until next week.......

MAY GOD BLESS YOU AND YOU BLESS GOD.

His servant and yours

David Tait

Today's 'Word Puzzle' Answer: SERGING

TODAY'S 'BIBLE QUESTION' ANSWER: 17) A - Those who hope in the LORD (Isaiah 40:30)

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ABOUT US

WALKING WITH JESUS MINISTRIES is a non-profit, non-denominational, Bible based ministry located in Hastings, New Zealand. A ministry dedicated to developing discipleship, fostering unity amongst God’s people to achieve the Great Commission, and in doing so, preparing for Christ’s return. It is securely based upon the foundational principles of the Apostles Creed while recognising the wide and rich diversity of beliefs amongst Christians in other areas. In accordance with the Lord’s direction, materials produced by the ministry are available, free of charge, to genuine enquirers upon request. The ministry is solely funded by donations, as the Lord provides. A list of materials available (plus some fun!) is obtainable and freely downloadable from our website
wwj.org.nz or by contacting us as follows.

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Napier
New Zealand

Phone: (06) 835 0567 International (+64) 6 835 0567

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Our role is to bless and encourage those in ministry while promoting co-operation and unity of direction amongst the body of Christ, as emphasised 3 times by Jesus in His longest prayer, immediately prior to His arrest and crucifixion. "… so that they may be one as we are one." (John 17:12, 21, 23-4) Our website is currently being developed to encourage your participation one with another, to share resources, and to enable you to promote events and items of interest to the body as a whole – and have a smile while doing it!

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