Yesterday’s sermon was “Mystery of God Revealed”, Colossians 1:24-2:5
In our study of Colossians we have learned:
Redemption:  Jesus paid the price for our sins when He died on the cross…so now we have the hope of eternal life.
Reconciliation:  Jesus restored our relationship with God…so now we can come into the presence of the Almighty God.
Why did Jesus do this?  Yesterday Todd talked about our special calling from God.  We were saved for a purpose.  God has expectations of us.
Example is in Colossians 1:24.  Paul rejoices in his suffering because he knows it is worth it.  He knows it will help to build the church.
Suffering is part of being a follower of Christ.  When we suffer for Christ, the message of Christ gains credibility.
Suffering also:
            takes our eyes of the comforts of this world.
            weeds out real followers from people we just want God to bless them
            strengthens our faith when we endure suffering.

Suffering for Christ is not suffering because we did something wrong.  There are consequences to sin and we suffer because of it, but this isn’t the suffering Paul is talking about.
Examples of Suffering for Christ:
            people make fun of us because we believe in Jesus as the Son of God.
            people criticize us
            call us bigoted or hypocritical
            we don’t get invited to parties because of our morals.

In some countries it can mean being arrested and thrown in jail because of their faith in Christ.  (NOTE:  Read Voice of the Martyrs newsletter on the bulletin board).
1 Peter 4:1-2.;14-16.  You cannot serve Christ without sacrifice.  Do you see the work of our church as something worthy of your sacrifice?  If not, what needs to happen to make it worth your sacrifice?
Colossians 1:25-27.  In this passage Paul is addressing the Gnosticism that had crept into the church.  The false teachers were saying they had secret knowledge. They spoke of visions from angels revealing secret teachings.  Angels are not who we, as Christians, pray to.  Through the sacrifice of Jesus we pray directly to God.  The false teachers were saying that they understood a secret about salvation.  If you really wanted to be saved you needed to understand the secret.
Paul says that the mystery has ALREDY been revealed.  The mystery of how the Messiah would save us.  And Jesus reveled that mystery.  He WAS the Messiah.  So…now the secret has been revealed.1 Peter 1:10-12.
Salvation through the death, burial, and resurrection of the Son of God was unknown before Jesus.  How could anyone imagine that God would take on flesh and pay the penalty for our sins?  The prophets talked about it but in vague terms.  The Jewish leaders searched the Law and the Prophets to try to figure it out but couldn’t.  Even angels didn’t understand it …..until it happened!
However, on this side of the Cross we DO understand the mystery of salvation through the death of the Son of God,  because it has already happened.  The mystery has been revealed.  So now…our purpose is to share the Gospel with others to reveal the mystery to people we haven’t heard it yet.
Colossians 1:28-29. 
               Proclaiming Jesus: He is the one we proclaim.. we must give Godly advice, not our own.  The                                                purpose is to win people to Jesus…not to the church,,,not to a                                                                    preacher…not to a children’s program…not to worship music.               Admonish one another…there are times we need to warn people of the consequences of                                                         rejecting Jesus …or of not obeying God.  Sometimes we need to remind                                                   people of who they represent.               Teach…with all wisdom.  We must teach people how to apply the principles of Scripture in their                                                 lives.  We are ALL called to help one another grow.  And growth requires                                                 exercise;  that is, we put into practice the things we have learned.                                                             Colossians 2:1-5
So, think on this question this week!  How do we make the mystery of God…namely Christ…known in our community? In our sphere of influence?PRAYER REQUESTS:

Janet Hall has been diagnosed with covid-19. Janet is still in hospital and has developed pneumonia in her left lung.  However Frank spoke to her on the phone this morning and she is in good spirits
Sharon Howe is scheduled for surgery this Friday to remove the plate they inserted when she broke her ankle earlier this year.  Prayers for successful surgery and recovery.
Carroll Bush is starting cancer treatments this Thursday, October 8th.  Prayers for comfort.
Prayers please for our President, the First Lady and other cabinet members who have tested positive for covid-19.
Brynnley Niederhaus is a Sonshine kids preschooler who has been diagnosed with an inoperable brain mass.  Prayers for comfort for Brynnley and for the family as they spent the next months with Brynnley.

Please keep all the missionaries in your prayers as this covid-19 flows through their communities.  Some countries are less equipped to handle a pandemic due to crowding, poor sanitation conditions, and weak infrastructure.  Pray these missionaries stay safe and are able to minister to people and show the love of Jesus during this time.  

Attached is this week’s prayer list.
Upcoming Events:

Tuesday –       Ladies Bible Study “Discovering Hope in the Psalms”  1:30 pm at church
Wednesday –  Stepping Stones dinner 6:00 pm; Bible Study 6:45 pm
Thursday  –     Board Meeting 6:45 pm
Sunday      –   Bible Study 9:15 am

Greeting cards available:  We have an abundance of cards on the table at the back of the sanctuary.  Please take whatever you can use.

Praise & Help Needed:  We have received a donation of school supplies that Sarah Black has requested for her class in Selawik Alaska. If anyone is interested in donating funds to help with the cost of shipping, please give to Carolyn Black or me.  Thank you!
Masks during Worship:  Please be considerate of others and wear a mask when you are moving around in the sanctuary or foyer.  If you prefer not to wear a mask during worship, please sit on the south side and then remove your mask.