Sunday, November 23, 2008

GREG ENGEBRETSON'S BLOG

Greg Engebretson has posted a couple of excellent recent articles on his blog. Check them out at: http://pondertheword.blogspot.com/. Thanks Greg!

Pastor Jerry

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

LETTER RE: HEAVEN

Several people asked for copies of this at a recent graveside service--so I thought I'd post it.

A man named Harry Rimmer penned the following letter to Charles E. Fuller of the Old Fashioned Revival Hour, shortly before his death.

"Next Sunday you are to talk about heaven. I am interested in that land because I have held a clear title to a bit of property there for over 50 years. I did not buy it. It was given to me without money and without price; but the Donor purchased it for me at tremendous sacrifice.
I am not holding it for speculation. It is not a vacant lot. For more than half a century I have been sending materials, out of which the greatest Architect of the universe has been building a home, for me, which will never need remodeling or repairs because it will suit me perfectly, individually, and will never grow old.

Termites can never undermine its foundation for it rests upon the Rock of Ages. Fire cannot destroy it. Floods cannot wash it away. No lock or bolts will ever be placed upon the doors, for no vicious person can ever enter that land, where my dwelling now stands, now almost completed and almost ready for me to enter in and abide in peace eternally, without fear of being rejected.

There is a valley of deep shadow between this place where I live, and that to which I shall journey in a very short time. I cannot reach my home in that city without passing through that valley. But I am not afraid because the best Friend I ever had went through the same valley long, long ago and drove away all its gloom. He stuck with me through thick and thin since we first became acquainted 55 years ago, and I hold this promise in printed form, never to forsake me or leave me alone. He will be with me as I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, and I shall not lose my way because He is with me.

I hope to hear your sermon on heaven next Sunday, but I have no assurance I shall be able to do so. My ticket for heaven has no date marked for the journey, no return coupon and no permit for baggage. Yes, I am ready to go, and I may not be here which you are talking next Sunday evening, but I will meet you there some day."

Sunday, October 19, 2008

NO COMPROMISE

Tobiah the Ammonite was an avowed enemy of the Jews. He was very displeased when he heard that someone had come to Jerusalem to oversee the rebuilding of its walls (Neh. 2:10). Together with Sanballat he aggressively opposed the work of the remnant. He ridiculed their efforts (Neh. 4:3). He sent letters to frighten Nehemiah (Neh. 7:19). Despite all of his efforts the wall was finished, the people were spiritually revived, and Jerusalem was repopulated.

You'd think that that would have been it for Tobiah. But surprisingly we read about him again in Nehemiah ch. 13. While Nehemiah was away in Babylon, Eliashib the priest worked out a deal with Tobiah. Tobiah needed a storage unit for some of his stuff, so Eliashib moved out the temple utensils and offerings out of a great chamber, located in the courts of the house of God, and moved in Tobiah's household goods (Neh. 13:8). Did I mention that Tobiah was related to Eliashib?

Nehemiah was none too happy when he returned from Babylon. When he "learned about the evil that Eliashib had done for Tobiah" he threw all of Tobiah's household belongings out of the room. Then he fumigated the place (Neh. 13:9).

Tobiah is symbolic of the tenacious nature of the Devil and sin. The Devil is always looking for a way to gain a foothold in our lives. When one method fails, he looks for another. He has someone close at hand, the flesh, whereby he works to gain a foothold. He would take up residence--build a fortress--that he might diminish our devotion and weaken our resolve.

Where would the remnant have been without Nehemiah? He was zealous for God, for God's Word, and for God's people. He pulled no punches when it came to defending God's honor. He earnestly sought what was best for God's people. Who serves in that role in our lives? The Holy Spirit. As tenacious as sin is, the Holy Spirit is in convicting of sin. He patiently reproves, corrects, and trains that we might put off sin.

The Holy Spirit never leaves us. Nehemiah had to leave for a while, and while he was gone all hell broke loose amongst the remnant (Cf. Neh. 13). But the Holy Spirit never leaves the born-gain believer. His convicting, teaching, fruit-bearing influence is always there. To be sure we can work against Him when we do not walk in Him or if we grieve Him or quench Him, but He is ready and willing to fight the Tobiah-like influence of sin in our lives.

Nehemiah was zealous for God and unwilling to compromise. The Holy Spirit is zealous in His efforts to make us like Christ. Praise God for His loving and powerful work in our lives.

Pastor Jerry

DAILY ASTORIAN ARTICLE - 10/17/08

CHURCH REPAIRS NEARLY COMPLETE JUST IN TIME FOR THE 50TH ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATION


The last time Lewis and Clark Bible Church held services in its sanctuary was the Sunday morning of the December 2007 storm. The storm caused extensive damage to the church facility. A portion of the roof was blown away causing water damage to numerous rooms inside. Subsequent investigation revealed that the building itself had suffered structural damage.


The repair work was delayed as the insurance company, the engineer, the contractor, and the building codes department worked towards a consensus regarding the required scope of work. The total cost of the project is ~$850,000, most of which is covered by insurance.

As a result of the repairs the church will have a new roof, new siding, new windows and doors, a newly remodeled kitchen and downstairs bathrooms; and new carpet and paint in many portions of the building.Helligso Construction began the repair effort in earnest in early June and are now nearly done.


The timing couldn't be better as the church will celebrate its 50th anniversary on Sunday, November 2nd. Lewis and Clark Bible Church met for the first time, in a remodeled seed barn at the present site, on October 1st, 1958. In the early 70s the present facility was built, which was also the home of the Lewis and Clark Christian Academy. The Academy later moved to downtown Astoria. Over the years the church has emphasized a faithful commitment to teaching God's Word and missionary outreach both at home and abroad.

The public is invited to the 50th Anniversary Celebration which will be at the church, located at 35082 Seppa Ln. The celebration service will be at 10:30 AM and will be followed by a luncheon in the church fellowship hall. Several guest speakers have been invited: Pastor Frank Emrich (Valley Bible Church, Sumner, WA); Pastor Bob Emrich (Emmanuel Bible Baptist Church, Plymouth, ME); and Dr. Roy Sprague, former Executive Director of Northwest Independent Church Extension. Other former Pastors and missionaries will also be present. Historical pictures and other historical church memorabilia will be on display.

Call 503-325-7011 for directions or further information.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

50TH ANNIVERSARY INVITATION

50th
Anniversary
Celebration


Sunday
November 2nd
2008

9:00 AM - Fellowship Time
10:30 AM - Morning Service
12:30 PM - Luncheon


You are invited to join us on NOVEMBER 2nd to help us celebrate our 50th ANNIVERSARY as we gather together to praise God for all the work He has done through the ministry of LCBC.

Our celebration will include a 9 AM Fellowship Time, a 10:30 AM Morning Worship service, and a 12:30 PM luncheon (food and beverages to be provided by the church). Historical pictures and testimonies will be on display.


Our desire is to glorify God in our celebration. In this regard, our worship will be enriched by your participation, since you are a part of God’s ministry at Lewis and Clark over the years. We would love to have you join us in praising the Lord for all that He has done.

Pastor Jerry Conklin
For the LCBC Church Family

50 YEARS - HUMBLE BEGINNINGS

“October 1st, 1958 was a cool crisp fall morning when about 15 people gathered for the first services in the building that then became the meeting place for the Lewis and Clark Bible Church. Each person was needed to contribute warmth as there was no heating plant. The few small windows did not let in much heat or light. The small furry animals, who had had full run of the place, were all suddenly promoted to church mice. They looked in on the services from time to time from the rafters.”1

So the seed barn became a church, and that which had been used for storing seed, was from then on used for sowing seed. And since that day the gospel seed has been sown—in Astoria, Clatsop County, across the country, and around the world. The gospel seed has gone forth.

Praise God that he is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think. From its humble beginnings God has greatly blessed the ministry of Lewis and Clark Bible Church with a rich tradition of faithful adherence to the truth of His Word and a deep desire to share it with others.

1 From Ethel Gustafson’s “History of Lewis & Clark Bible Church.”

Thursday, October 2, 2008

BOGLE NEWSLETTER

September 2008

One Year in Wamena! Wow! We left the U.S. for Wamena on September 11, 2007 and it has already been a year. THAT WAS FAST! We want to thank you all for your support, prayers and encouragement. You helped make it possible for us to serve here. THANK YOU! How do I summarize all that has happened, all that we have learned about, smiled and laughed about and wept over? The following highlights summarize the experiences that are still lingering in my mind and heart as I write to you. As you may know, it was our vision to establish a program to train village healthcare workers. The plan was to work side-by-side with the clinic started by Dr. Dugger (Rumah Sakit Kalvari - RSK) providing man power for the clinic while giving the future healthcare workers an opportunity to use their training. It was not long after our arrival here that we learned that the Dugger family needed to take an early and extended home ministry assignment. I stepped forward and offered to help in the clinic for the six months he would be gone. This was going to give me an opportunity to improve my language skills, learn the patient demographics of the Jaya Wijaya Region, hone my physical assessment skills and practice training the national staff. Not all has gone to plan. It has been nine months and the Duggers are just now returning to the field. There were many days operations trumped training, but I would not trade these experiences.

The Lord Heals:

The slogan here at RSK is, "We treat. The Lord heals!" It has been encouraging to see this ideal permeate the care provided. Patients are not only evaluated and treated, but are provided prayer and counseling. The process through the clinic ends with all patients seeing the chaplain. Often we have prayed with the patient multiple times before he or she leaves. The testimony of this care and its impact is being talked about throughout the community. It has been thrilling to work beside our staff and watch them praise God for His provisions as we see patients improve physically, emotionally or both!

For example: There was one man who was carried into our clinic by two friends. He had been to many clinics and hospitals throughout the island, but was not improving. His liver was enlarged, abdomen was distended with fluid and he was extremely jaundiced. We told him that we probably could not help him, we would try, but it would have to rest on the Lord. We evaluated, counseled and prayed with him. Eventually we treated him for syphilis and ameba and told him that he would have to follow-up weekly over the next month. (The staff are still talking about this case.) He walked into the clinic on his own the following week praising God, looking much healthier. Two months later he moved on, but not before visiting us to thank us for the services we provided. He prayed with our chaplain and we have not seen him since.

It has been a challenge to diagnose and treat difficult cases with the help of the staff (many who have only had a high school education) and visiting physicians or consulting over the internet, but worth it to see patients healed and brought before the throne.

We have had opportunities to help New Tribes Missionaries in remote, new posts care for critically ill patients. This is exciting as it helps open the doors for these missionaries as they plant the church and translate the Word. We have held special clinics to serve the local street children. Believe me, that there is not enough space to list all the praise worthy experiences other than to say - Praise God! How God?

As always takes place in the life of a child of God, we are not without our daily cry, "How can I do this God?" God, how do I tell the parents of a thirteen year old rape victim that the rapist gave her HIV? How do I comfort one of my nurses who just learned that her father was unfaithful to her mother and now has HIV? How do I tell a patient he has been misdiagnosed for the last year by several doctors and that, "No, you are not healed and what you really have is a progressive cancer that will take your life very shortly."? How do I explain to yet another set of parents that their child was improperly treated for his cerebral malaria or meningitis and now has permanent brain damage? Oh Lord, how do I examine the body of a dear friend, whose children are friends of my children; a godly pilot whose desire was to serve the people of Papua with a full heart? God, how can I hear another teenager explain how she sold or gave her body away? Now I have to tell her that she gave away her life. How do I share Your love for her in such a way that she will willingly receive it? Of course there are many more trying experiences than space to list, but I can say with certainty God has provided continually! He provided brothers and sisters in Christ who have continued to pray and encourage us. He has provided opportunities to give everything to Him and watch Him work. It has been encouraging to know that the trials are just a sign that we are in fact having a positive impact on the lives of Papuans here.

We now have 87 HIV positive patients. More than the local hospital and local government clinic! Why do they come? They say it is because we pray with them. The staff hear them out, allow them to cry and don’t pass judgment on them. They share with people in the community that they know we serve Christ!

I ask that you pray that we will keep asking God daily how to handle the task before us. We need to be continually reminded that it is through Him and for Him that we serve.
Brief Highlights: Because of your support, I have been able to serve beside nationals and train them how to interview and examine patients. We have seen and treated hundreds of patients. We have witnessed many patients physically healed and countenances changed with a new hope in the Lord and parents touched that we show love and compassion to their HIV infected child. I have had the opportunity to assist Helimission on several medical evacuations and have provided a two day and a nine day clinical in two remote villages. We have had plenty of opportunities to encourage staff, patients and their family members in the Word and to pray with them. Recently I attended a government funded HIV case manager course and was asked to close in prayer. What an awesome experience to pray in Indonesian before Muslims and Christians, but praise God for the opportunity. What a privilege it is to be His servant. Thank you for making it possible to serve Him here!

Prayer Requests:

1.) Pray that my transition from the clinic responsibilities to a national training program will go smoothly and happen fairly soon.
2.) Pray that all of us involved in the medical ministry here (RSK Staff, Duggers and Bogles) will not become overwhelmed with the medical needs and lose the heart of shining forth Christ in the lives of those dying.
3.) Pray especially for our local staff. It is really hitting them hard seeing their generation dying from AIDS and watching many of the churches pointing fingers rather than jumping in and helping. The attitude within the church is starting to change. Pray it will open its arms to the street children and reach out to the prostitutes.
4.) Pray for someone to fill the chaplain role in our clinic. Satan knows where we will be the most effective and he has been trying to damage
this area of our ministry. We had to let our chaplain go for causing dissention, leaking out private and harmful information within the community and deliberately trying to damage the testimony of our director.
5.) Pray that my family and I
can have a closer walk with God. This area of our life is improving, but Jennifer and I are seeing a greater need for improvement as the teenage years of our children are upon us.

A Great Need:

From my experience these last several months I have learned that I need charts, pictures, illustrations, models and computer animations to teach human anatomy and physiology, basic chemistry and pathophysiology. I have staff who were trained through the government nursing program and even a graduate from the Papuan university who cannot describe how blood flows through the body, how oxygen enters the body and carbon dioxide exits or even where specific organs are located within the body. Many of them were trained with poor quality, illegal copies of textbooks and teachers who stood in front of them regurgitating the day’s lesson. They were not allowed to ask questions! Attend, sit down and listen is the mantra of the education system here. Thirty minutes with them and a large poster or a physical model and they get it! The problem is; good models, animations and illustrations are not available here in Papua. I am looking for prepared slides of normal human tissues, basic chemical models, any models of the human body, computer animations depicting normal human physiology and disease processes, models allowing students to practice skills (i.e. an IV arm, catheter placement models, etc.). Maybe someone, a small bible study group or a church congregation wants to help purchase one of these items for the training program? This may seem insignificant, but it will vastly improve the quality of care our trainees and staff will provide.

GOD HAS PREPARED A PLACE FOR US

The contractor has been working hard to prepare our building for the 50th Anniversary celebration on November 2nd. And we’ve been making a lot of preparations too. But as much as we are excited about our upcoming return to the sanctuary, we should all have our hearts and minds set (Col. 3:1-4) on a place that is "very much better" (Phil. 1:23). Jesus said, "And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you to Myself; that, where I am, there you may be also" (John 14:3).

We are not given a complete description of our future dwelling place, "but just as it is written, ‘Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard, and which have not entered the heart of man, all that God has prepared for those who love Him." (1 Cor. 2:9). According to His great wisdom and power God has prepared a perfect dwelling place for each one of us, "eternal in the heavens" (2 Cor. 5:1).

Everything will be perfectly in its place in the place God has prepared. The preparations will be complete--nothing will be left unfinished. What He has prepared will never be undone by rot, or mold, or powerful winds. The glory of our Lord Jesus Christ will permeate heaven. One day, when we see Him, we will marvel at Him (2 Thess. 1:10) and at all He has prepared for us. Now that’s something to truly be excited about!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

BUILDING REPAIR UPDATE - 9/10/08

Its been a while since I've given an update as to how the building repairs are progressing...The structural improvements have been completed--including the rebuilding of the north wall, the installation of blocking in the walls and floors, and the installation of strapping and hold downs in various locations. Much of the electrical wiring work has been completed. The main task at hand is the roof replacement. This is a very difficult job, both because of the height and angle of the roof, and because of the improvements that need to be made. But the one side of the sanctuary roof replacement is nearly complete, and work on the other side will start soon.

The sheet rock work inside will likely start next week and then all of the other inside finish work will happen right after that. We are eagerly anticipating the day when it is all finished. Meeting in the play room has been fine, and we are thankful that God provided a location in our big building for us to meet. But I'm starting to feel like the astronauts on the Apollos 13 must have felt--its time to move our of the landing vehicle and back into the main vessel.

Otherwise things are going well. We are working on preparations for the LCBC 50th Anniversary Celebration. It is planned for Nov. 2nd. Pray with us that the building repairs will be done in time for that to happen. The on-site supervisor assured me, just today, that we are going to make it. But I think it would still be a good idea to pray towards that end--having done some construction I know that it always costs more and takes longer than you think.

Pastor Jerry

Saturday, August 30, 2008

RECENT FISHING TRIP

Claire and I had some success, together with Del, on a recent fishing trip in the Columbia River. It was the biggest fish Claire has ever caught--about a 20lb Chinook.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

THE GREATER PROGRESS OF THE GOSPEL

The modern church is enamored with church growth. It seemingly will do anything to get results. Entertaining music, dumbed down sermons, worldly techinques are applied to the ministry of the church--supposedly for the greater progress of the gospel. One author wrote a book and argued that unless churches rid themselves of pews, pulpits, and hymnals they will never reach the lost. Such thinking is pervasive in the church today--as if God is somehow limited by such concerns. Whatever happened to the Holy Spirit's role in saving lost sinners?

The Apostle Paul knew something about what would enhance the greater progress of the gospel. He wrote about it in Philippians 1:12. It didn't involve any kind of new program. It didn't depent on man's ingenuity--indeed I think its safe to say that no man would ever come up with that plan. What was God's plan for enhancing the greater progress of the gospel?--Locking up the Apostle Paul in a prison cell. God did just that, and because He did the gospel was made known to the whole Praetorian guard.

I'm so glad that God knows what He's doing when it comes to His plan and purpose. He's not dependent upon our ingenuity, planning, or scheming when it comes to reaching the lost. All He really needs is humble, obedient, available servants.

Friday, August 8, 2008

PICTURE OF THE CHURCH BELL


Wednesday, July 30, 2008

THE OWNER CARES

I came upon a heartbreaking scene this morning on my way home from town. Just after I passed a dump truck towing a trailer I saw an animal in the road flopping from side to side, obviously severely injured. From a distance I couldn't tell what it was, but as I got closer I could see that it was a dog. The dog was severely injured, and as I drew near I saw the owner of the dog walking out to retrieve his beloved dog. He gathered the dog up in his arms and cradled it to his breast. It was obvious that the dog wasn't going to make it. I pulled off the road and expressed to the man how sorry I was that his dog had been hurt. I could see the obvious love that he had for his dog and the sadness in his heart--he knew that his dog was about to die. I felt so sad for him.

I thought about that scene and thought about our Owner and how He cares for us. Sin leads us out into the road where hazards abound. Time after time we are struck with its tragic consequences and the unbearable pain that results. But there is Someone who cares. Someone who is able to forgive. Someone who can comfort us in all our affliction (2 Cor. 1:4). Time after time He gathers us up into our arms to comfort and console us in our time of need. We are reminded to cast all our cares upon Him, because He cares for us (1 Peter 5:7). And He is also able over time to train us--to stay out of the road--its dangerous.

My heart goes out to the owner of the dog. Please pray for him in his loss.

Pastor Jerry

DESPITE APPEARANCES--GOD IS AT WORK

Our church building is not much to look at. There is no siding on the front or back of the church. The roof is covered with tarps. The church steeple has been decapitated to its roots. A passer by might wonder about its condition. Has God abandoned Lewis & Clark Bible Church? Don't the people care?

If someone would have told me last year that we were to completely remodel our sanctuary in 2008, I would have thought him to be crazy. Under what scenario would our small congregation come up with such funds! And yet here we are--a building permit in hand, a contractor on the job, and the approval of the insurance company to do the repairs.

In many respects we can all relate to the present condition of our building--in our present state there are still many flaws. Though forgiven, sin is still apparent. We are not yet conformed to the image of Christ, but the work has begun, and all the provisions have been made for its completion. "He who began a good work in (us) will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus" (Phil. 1:6).

It is to this reality that Paul praised God. God intends to fill every believer up "to all the fulness of God" (Eph. 19). And we can be confident that He will because, "He is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think" (Eph. 3:20). Our building might not be much to look at now, but God is at work to change that. As believers there is still much work to be done in us, but God has a plan: one day "He will transform the body of our humble state into conformity with the gody of His glory, by the exertion of the power that He has even to subject all things to Himself" (Phil. 3:21). Praise God for His ability to save to the uttermost those who place their faith and trust in Him!

Pastor Jerry

A NEW CROSS

Check out this A.W. Tozer quote regarding the cross: http://outofthemiryclay.com/2008/07/30/a-new-cross/. Thanks Ryan.

Pastor Jerry

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

CHURCH WORKDAY PICTURES

These are pictures taken at our July 19th church workday.











CHURCH REPAIR PICTURES

We have been continually updating a sister blog with pictures of the repair effort. You can see them at www.lcbcrepairs.blogspot.com.

Pastor Jerry

50th ANNIVERSARY DATE

We have decided to change the date of our 50th Anniversary Celebration. Now that we have final approval for the building project, and thus have a better idea of what the schedule looks like, it has become apparent that we probably won't be done with the work by Oct. 12th. We have decided to change the date of the Celebration to Sunday, Nov. 2nd. Please pray with us that the work will continue uninterrupted in a safe and timely manner. We look forward to the opportunity to gather with many of you on that day to praise God for what He has done and is doing.

Pastor Jerry

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

STATEMENT OF VALUE LOSS AND CLAIM

I just received the statement of value loss and claim from the insurance adjuster. Praise the Lord! Everything is covered. The church will receive some added funds to take care of some non-insurance related repairs. We've been praying that things would work out favorably for us--what a blessing!

Pastor Jerry

Monday, July 21, 2008

BUILDING REPAIR UPDATE - 7/21/08

I had a meeting today with the Insurance Adjuster and Ryan Helligso of Helligso Construction. The insurance adjuster gave Ryan the verbal approval to go ahead with the remaining work according to the plans and the estimate. We hope to have a loss summary report this week which will give us a better idea of what our financial situation is going to look like. But at this point it all looks real positive. Praise the Lord!

Pastor Jerry

Sunday, July 20, 2008

LCBC REPAIRS BLOG

Check out our new blog: www.lcbcrepairs.blogspot.com for some pictures of the ongoing repairs to the church building. Ellen has added some new pictures both of the original storm damage and the ongoing repairs.

Pastor Jerry

BUILDING REPAIR UPDATE - 7/20/08

We now have a building permit. Work on the sanctuary walls and floors is ongoing. Blocking is being added between framing members to add strength to the building. Please pray for us regarding a meeting with the Insurance adjuster and the Contractor on Monday morning (7/21/08) at 9 AM. The meeting will determine to some extent the financial responsibility of the church regarding the repairs. Depending on what happens the church could have some funds for other (non insurance related) repairs. Pray that the insurance company will respond favorably to our needs and that we would have the funds to take care of these items. Thanks.

Pastor Jerry

Friday, July 18, 2008

WHAT ABOUT JESUS?

We're are currently doing a study in Adult Sunday School on the marks of a healthy church. Our second lesson was on the importance of having a biblical theology. By way of introduction to that lesson I shared this statistic from a recent survey of believers in America. According to the survey results 57% of evangelical church attenders said that they believe many religions can lead to eternal life. This is a startling statistic!

There can be no doubt that many of these respondents are not truly born again. There are many who profess but who do not possess faith in the Lord Jesus Christ (Matt. 7:21; Tit. 1:16; 2 Tim. 3:5, etc.).

But the fact that there are so many attending churches today holding such an opinion should alarm us! And one of things that I would argue is that this statistic amounts to a devaluing of our Lord Jesus Christ. If it supposed that many religions can lead to eternal life, that Jesus is not the only way. He is but one of several options. One of many equally viable routes.

But Jesus did not leave room for such thinking. He declared Himself to be the one way of salvation: John 14:6, "Jesus said to him, "I am THE way, and THE truth, and THE life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me."

After His great miracle-the feeding of the 5000-the people were pretty excited about Jesus. They liked what He did. They thought it might be prudent to make a King out of Him. He would be their great provider. But Jesus demanded more. He spoke exclusively of what was required of them: John 6:53, "Jesus therefore said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves." His message was not well received. The multitudes abandoned him (6:66). Jesus asked the twelve if they were going to leave Him too. Peter replied, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life?"

Later Peter would heal a man. He then preached a sermon and 5000 people were saved (Acts 4:4). The religious leaders had Peter and John arrested. They were brought before the Council and interrogated. Just before the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus, Peter had denied Jesus three times, but now, filled with the Spirit, Peter declared, "And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men, by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12).

Most of us are familiar with these verses. And they all speak to the exclusive message of the Gospel--salvation is by faith alone in Christ alone. But consider again that statistic. What does it say to a person's understanding of the nature of the person of Christ? All things exist by Him, through Him, and for Him (Col. 1:16). He alone is the lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world (John 1:29). He alone is the Alpha and Omega (Rev. 22:13). He alone has been crucifed once for all for sin and raised from the dead proving God's acceptance of His sacrifice (Heb. 10:10; Rom. 5:25). It is to Him alone--not Bhudda, Mohammed, Joseph Smith, etc.--that every knee will bow and every tongue confess His Lordship (Phil. 2:10).

The fact that 57% of so-called evangelical church attenders believe that many religions can lead to eternal life speaks volumes to what has been taught and what is being taught in our churches today. Paul said, "But we preach Christ crucified" (1 Cor. 1:23). How important it is that we ongoingly stress the supremacy and sufficiency of our Lord Jesus Christ. The Apostle Paul was gravely concerned lest the believers in Corinth be led astray from the simplicity and purity of devotion to Christ (2 Cor. 11:3). He chided them inasmuch as they would readily receive a another Jesus, a different spirit, or a different gospel (2 Cor. 11:4). Apparently the church today has far too much "Corinthian" in it.

The Apostle John gives the ultimate test for discerning not only false teaching but false professing. 1 John 4:2, "By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God; and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God." Can you believe that many religions lead to eternal life and be saved? Not hardly. The Spirit of God indwells every believer (Rom. 8:9). He imparts truth (1 John 2:27). Where there is no understanding of the person and work of Christ, there can be no salvation. Salvation involves the Spirit-led confession of Jesus as Lord (Rom. 10:9; 1 Cor. 12:3).

Perhaps a good thing to come out of these negative surveys is the understanding of the need for a renewed commitment to Christ-centered teaching and preaching in our churches. It is His church. He alone is Savior and Lord. Heaven is all about Him. Why should we preach about anything else?

Pastor Jerry

Friday, July 11, 2008

BUILDING REPAIR UPDATE - 7/11/08

  1. The chimney and fireplace have been removed.
  2. The repairs to the north and south walls are complete.
  3. Sheer walls have been put in place in the north and south ends of the Fellowship Hall.
  4. Blocking is being added to all of the sanctuary perimeter walls.
  5. Pending projects include:
  • Adding blocking between the top plate and the roof so that a positive connection can be made and the roof can be secured to the top plate.
  • Installing the ridge beam inside the sanctuary at the peak of the ceiling.
  • Removal of additional siding.
  • Install blocking in the sanctuary floor system.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

REALLY?

Check out Greg's post "Really" about "Living for Jesus" and the value of hymns at: http://pondertheword.blogspot.com/

THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST

Bob Nyberg sent this to me. All too true...

The Pacific Northwest According to Jeff Foxworthy

  1. You know the state flower (Mildew)
  2. You feel guilty throwing aluminum cans or paper in the trash.
  3. Use the statement “sun break” and know what it means.
  4. You know more than 10 ways to order coffee.
  5. You know more people who own boats than air conditioners.
  6. You feel overdressed wearing a suit to a nice restaurant.
  7. You stand on a deserted corner in the rain waiting for the “Walk” Signal.
  8. You consider that if it has no snow or has not recently erupted, it is not a real mountain.
  9. You can taste the difference between Starbucks, Seattle’s Best, and Veneto’s.
  10. You know the difference between Chinook, Coho and Sockeye salmon.
  11. You know how to pronounce Sequim, Puyallup, Issaquah, Oregon,Yakima and Willamette.
  12. You consider swimming an indoor sport.
  13. You can tell the difference between Japanese, Chinese and Thai food.
  14. In winter, you go to work in the dark and come home in the dark- while only working eight-hour days.
  15. You never go camping without waterproof matches and a poncho.
  16. You are not fazed by “Today’s forecast: showers followed by rain,”and “Tomorrow’s forecast: rain followed by showers.”
  17. You have no concept of humidity without precipitation
  18. You know that Boring is a town in Oregon and not just a state of mind.
  19. You can point to at least two volcanoes, even if you cannot seethrough the cloud cover.
  20. You notice, “The mountain is out” when it is a pretty day and you can actually see it.
  21. You put on your shorts when the temperature gets above 50, butstill wear your hiking boots and parka.
  22. You switch to your sandals when it gets about 60, but keep the socks on.
  23. You have actually used your mountain bike on a mountain.
  24. You think people who use umbrellas are either wimps or tourists.
  25. You buy new sunglasses every year, because you cannot find the oldones after such a long time.
  26. You measure distance in hours.
  27. You often switch from “heat” to “a/c” in the same day. (Actually, if you live on the coast you think that “a/c” stands for alternating current!)
  28. You design your kid’s Halloween costume to fit under a raincoat.
  29. You know all the important seasons: Almost Winter, Winter,Still Raining (Spring), Road Construction (Summer), Deer &Elk season(Fall).

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

RELEVANT OR IRRELEVANT?

I came across this quote as I was preparing for my Sunday School class on the Marks of a Healthy Church, and how a Biblical theology contributes to the health of the church.

David Wells, "Unless the evangelical church can recover the knowledge of what it means to live before a holy God, unless in its worship it can relearn humility, wonder, love, and praise, unless it can find again a moral purpose in the world that resonates with the holiness of God and that is accordingly deep and unyielding--unless the evangelical church can do all of these things, theology will have no place in its life...Those who are most relevant to the modern world are those most irrelevant to the moral purpose of God, but those who are irrelevant in the world by virture of their relevance to God actually have the most to say to the world. They are, in fact, the only ones who have anything to say to it. That is what Jesus declared, what the Church in its best moments has known, and what we, by the grace of God, can yet discover."

Pastor Jerry

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

ONE TENTH OF ONE PERCENT

Greg Engebretson posted this on his website. I copied it here--it is a great blessing...

Due to a tragic incident that involved a member of my family, I was not able to compose an article these past two weeks as I had hoped. I have been working on several ideas and pray that I will be able to post those articles as the Lord leads.

Instead, I would like to make some observations regarding our church service this past Sunday. We had a guest speaker and some guest visitors. I won't be long, but just wanted to share a few thoughts about these two.

First, the speaker. He sat in his wheel chair with his disfigured appearance, blind, limbs missing; all evidence of the horrific 3rd degree burns he suffered approximately 10 years ago. The speaker, Brian, a man in his late 20's, had been involved in an accident that resulted in more than 90 percent of his body being burned. Why was he sitting there with a microphone positioned in front of him to amplify the words he would speak? When he was finished, there was no doubt that he was being obedient to what the Lord had spoken through the Apostle Peter in 1 Peter 3:15, where Peter wrote, "but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence;" For approximately 45 minutes, Brian praised the Father and attributed all glory and honor to His Son, Jesus, as he spoke with power from the Holy Spirit. Truly, with gentleness and reverence, he had made his defense as he gave an account of the hope that was in him!

The visiting guests. They sat in their chairs listening intently. Hearts heavy with a burden they had been bearing for more than a week; a burden like none they had ever experienced before. Their fallen countenance and their red and swollen eyes were evidence of the cares that needed to be cast at the feet of One who could bear them. Why were they there? Sure, they had been invited, but why were they there? It became clear that the reason was simply that they needed to hear Brian's defense and his account of the hope that is in him. They needed to hear about the Lord Jesus Christ, the source of this hope. They had heard it from others but they needed to hear it from Brian as the Lord spoke to their hearts through him.

In John 16:7, Jesus said, "But I tell you the truth, it is to your advantage that I go away; for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you; but if I go, I will send Him to you." The Helper had spoken through Brian and I believe He had not only brought the visiting guests to hear him, but that He was working in the hearts and minds of the visiting guests as well. The Helper had brought together one who was ready to give an account of the hope (Jesus) that was in him with those who were desperately needing to hear about the surpassing hope that is found in Christ. The meeting of these two could not have been better scripted by a master choreographer. A man could have studied and prepared for months to preach to this group of guests and never have spoken the message that the Helper used Brian to speak.

Why was I there? I know I am there each Sunday, but why was I there that Sunday? I also needed to hear Brian's defense and the account of the hope that is in him. I needed to see God using His people to speak and minister to others.

When Brian spoke of the great scripture verse regarding God causing all things to work together for good, to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose; this truth was sitting before us in a wheel chair. The great truth that God is able to do exceedingly abundantly, beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, was seen in this child of His as he ministered to us.

If you haven't forgotten it, you may be wondering about the title of this post. One of things that Brian shared, was that when he was taken to the hospital after being burnt and after assessing the severity of his burns, his doctors had given him a one tenth of one percent chance of survival. Praise God that the Lord Jesus Christ was that one tenth of one percent!

Father, I thank you for your servant Brian. I thank you that you intervened against all human odds and not only kept him alive but you gave him abundant life where it shouldn't have been. Thank you for the Helper. Help each of us to be reminded of the hope of our faith, and with gentleness and reverence, be ready to give an account of that hope to others who need it. Continue to work in the lives of my family members who so desperately need you and in the lives of those who may already know you but need to get right with you. Thank you for how you work in people's lives.

posted by Greg Engebretson at 12:15 PM on Jul 2, 2008

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

HOW TO GROW A GREAT BIG CHURCH REAL FAST

How to grow a great big church real fast (According to the church growth experts):

  1. Play the music that the people want to hear.
  2. Make sure you have an espresso bar.
  3. Encourage your members to proselityze members from other churches.
  4. Spy on other churches to find out how big a threat they are to your future domination.
  5. Don’t teach or preach on controversial doctrines.
  6. Don’t have a doctrinal statement, or, if you must, make sure it is very small.
  7. Preach according to the plan that has been laid out for you by others.
  8. Don’t practice church discipline or teach that believers should admonish one another.
  9. Don’t expect people to use their spiritual gifts or serve in any way.
  10. Don’t use the word “Bible” or “Baptist” or "Church" in your church name.

A SCALPEL OR A FEATHER?

I think that it is safe to say that most people would prefer a visit to a movie theatre to a visit to the hospital. Going to a theatre is fun and entertaining. Going to a hospital is anything but that. Of the two, the hospital serves as a far better analogy of the church. The church is to be like a hospital. The church is a place for soul surgery. The Great Physician, the Chief Surgeon, knows our true condition. He is healthy. We are not. He knows what it takes to restore our health. And what it takes is major surgery. The sin condition we are all born with is terminal. It is a malignant, chronic, debilitating disease that man has no answer for. The Great Physical alone has a cure.

The church is to be a place where people can hear the truth about their lost condition. It does no good to avoid the diagnosis. No one wants to hear that they have cancer, but better to hear and receive treatment than to let the deadly disease run its course. The Word of God has some bad news in it. The Great Physician tells us the bad news about ourselves because He cares (John 16:8). He wants us to receive the cure—the cure is the salvation that is found in Jesus Christ.

The tool of a surgeon is a scalpel. And the tool the Great Physician uses is the Word of God. It pierces as far as the division of soul and spirit (Heb. 4:12). When the Word of God is taught in a church, soul surgery takes place. Unbelievers are convicted of sin and instructed in the Gospel. Believers are taught, reproved, corrected, and trained (2 Tim. 3:16).

But too many churches are more like theatres. And instead of a surgeon’s scalpel they operate with the feather of a bird. Wanting to have their ears tickled (2 Tim. 4:3), such churches accumulate teachers that tell them what they want to hear. No bad news about sin. No warning about judgment. No demand to trust in Christ. Happy ears. Sick hearts. Judgment to come.

Most would rather go to a movie theatre than a hospital. Most of us would prefer a feather to a scapel. But when the Holy Spirit opens the eyes of a person to the Holiness of God; when they are convicted of sin; and when they see their desperate need for salvation—they are driven to the place where they can find healing—and that place is Jesus Christ (John 6:68).

Church might not be fun and entertaining—though there is much joy in the fellowship of believers. You may not hear what you think you want to hear. But if the church is teaching the Word as it ought, then there should be some soul-surgery going on week-by-week. And members will grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ. Entertainment is overrated. Spiritual health is far more important. The depth of joy and assurance of hope unleashed through God’s healing hand is far more appealing than any tickle of a feather.

Pastor Jerry

Friday, June 27, 2008

DEALING WITH DIFFICULT SITUATIONS

"Dealing with difficult situations," by Andrew Murray:

  1. Realize that God brought me here. It is by His will I am in this place: in that fact I will rest.
  2. Realize that He will keep me here in His love, and give me grace to behave as His child.
  3. Realize that He will make the trial a blessing, teaching me the lessons that He intends me to learn, and working in me that grace He means to bestow.
  4. In His good time He can bring me out again - how and when - He knows.

So, I am here...

  1. By God's appointment.
  2. In His keeping.
  3. Under His training.
  4. For His time.

Romans 8:28, "And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose."

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

BRIAN'S STORY

Brian Sakultarawattn will be our guest speaker this upcoming Sunday, June 29th. So I thought I'd include this account of his and Haley's testimony in my blog.

"It was the stuff movies are made of. Handsome, strong, athletic, 19-year-old Brian Sakultarawattn hiked the mountains with his best friend, 18-year-old Haley Havlik. She had packed their lunch, and the two were excited to be breathing in the fresh Oregon air. They laughed, panted, and half-ran to the very top of the mountain, then paused to thank God for the beauty he'd created.

While Haley packed the remains of their lunch back into the basket, Brian reached into his backpack and pulled out a miniscule box. When Haley turned around, he was on one knee and had opened the box.

"I always want to take care of you," he said. "Will you marry me?"

Brian had already cleared his intentions with Haley's parents and promised he and Haley wouldn't set an immediate date for the wedding. After Haley said yes, she and Brian talked about a year-and-a-half engagement. They hiked down the mountain as happy as two people in love with God and each other could be. Little did they know their world was about to change forever.

Tuesday, December 26, 1995-a day Brian and Haley would never forget.

Brian was working at Teen Trees International, a tree farm near his home in St. Helens, Oregon. He had been learning forestry management skills there for the past two years. Brian and his supervisor tossed a few loads of discarded paper into a burn barrel in the parking lot and watched it burn. Dan left for lunch, and Brian guarded the fire alone.

When the flames shot above the barrel's rim, Brian glanced around the shop for a bucket of water to dowse the fire. But as soon as he tossed the contents of the bucket onto the flames, the fire erupted with a mighty BOOM.

Brian had mistakenly grabbed a bucket of gasoline instead of water.

Hours later, Haley, her family, and Brian's family listened as the surgeon approached them with the news that Brian had miraculously survived. Even though 94 percent of his body had been grotesquely burned, Brian was alive. But the handsome, dark-skinned, athletic young man was no longer even recognizable.

Brian learned fast that true identity cannot be established on anything other than a close relationship with Jesus Christ.

During the next several months, the burn staff had to reconstruct Brian's exterior shell. Using skin from cadaver and grafts from what little skin Brian had left, surgeons stapled together an intricate quilt of skin.

This blanket of cadaver skin was just temporary; it bought the physicians enough time to have Brian's own skin grown in a lab from a small graft. When his new skin arrive, cut into squares the size of mini Post-It notes, doctors repeated the grueling process of scraping off the old skin and stitching on the new.

To keep Brian alive, surgeons had to sacrifice his infected limbs. His forearms were amputated, part of his left leg was gone, and he was still in danger of losing his right foot. He endured 19 surgeries during the several months he was at the Oregon Burn Center. Three weeks after the accident, Brian regained consciousness.

He later lost his vision.

What about the engagement? Haley had a big decision to make. When she promised to spend the rest of her life with Brian, he was everything she'd ever dreamed of-physically, emotionally, and spiritually. Things were different now.

But Haley's response? "It just doesn't matter to me how Brian looks on the outside," she said. "He's still the same on the inside. I still see that boyish smile. I still share the dream of someday raising a family."

Two years after the accident, Brian and Haley were married. Brian wears his wedding ring on a chain around his neck, and the doctors say he can father a child. "I thank God every day for another chance to live," he says. "I especially thank him for Haley. Someday we'll have kids!"

The community rallied around the young couple and collected enough funds to build them a special home with ramps for Brian's wheelchair. And today, seven years after the accident, Haley still doesn't question her commitment to Brian. She knows true beauty comes from the soul and real identity comes from a solid relationship with the Creator."

Genesis 1:26-27, 31 Romans 12:2-5
Genesis 2:7 Romans 13:9

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

06-24-08 DAILY ASTORIAN ARTICLE


Church finally sees the light of reconstruction
The Daily Astorian

Six months after the violent December storms devastated Jerry Conklin's church off Lewis and Clark Road, reconstruction work has finally begun.

It took until late May for Conklin, the Clatsop County Building Codes Division and Conklin's insurance company to agree on repair costs. But workers from Helligso Construction began hammering away at the damaged building in early June and are expected to finish construction by October.

Conklin said he thinks repairs could cost more than $750,000. The Dec. 2-3 storms ripped through Lewis and Clark Bible Church on Seppa Lane, off Lewis and Clark Road, tilting its walls and tearing off part of and leaving a hole in the northwest corner of the roof. As rain continued to fall, the church sanctuary, kitchen, library and some bathrooms - all underneath the north side of the building - suffered extensive water damage.

The Building Codes Division and Conklin's insurance company both sent engineers to assess the damage, drawing out the repair process to months instead of weeks."If they were just building a new building, it would be faster," said Conklin. "It's just very tedious."Since the disaster, Conklin and his congregation have moved services to the basement, where the Building Codes Division said it would be safe to meet. The church formerly used the space as the children's "play room" and is about half the size of the sanctuary. "We're very excited to have work going on," Conklin said.

After Conklin filed a claim with his insurance company, Church Mutual of Merrill, Wis., in mid-December, the company approved initial work. Helligso Construction crews then began tearing out wet carpet and wet sheet rock ruined from rain damage.

The church met in Lewis and Clark Elementary School for the rest of December, before the basement was approved as a meeting location.

Jim Byerly, the acting building official in the Clatsop County Building Codes Division, and local engineer Bill Marczewski, assessed Conklin's church shortly after it was damaged. But the insurance company's staff disagreed about some of the initial assessments, Byerly said, so it commissioned a second engineer to assess the damage.

"Part of the reason for the delay is waiting for the insurance to get estimates on the work," said Conklin.The insurance company approved 100 percent of the repairs in May, Conklin said. "We appreciate that things are getting done," he said.

Byerly said the Building Codes Division has worked with more than 60 homeowners to help them assess damages."We're helping the homeowners talk with the insurance agents," said Byerly. "It's been a lot of leg work. It's actually been a lot of negotiations with the contractors, the homeowners and insurance agents.

"The Clatsop County Long Term Disaster Recovery Committee, which assembled in the months after the storm, has also been working to help find volunteers to help victims clean up after the disaster, as well as helping victims understand how to work with insurance companies, according to the committee chairwoman Charlene Larsen. Conklin did not contact the committee to help him work with his insurance company, but the committee has close to 60 other cases it is working on.

The parties involved in Conklin's case are developing final estimates for repair costs, which Ryan Helligso of Helligso Construction said should be finalized by the end of this week. Conklin said he hopes the repairs will be done by Oct. 12, when the church celebrates its 50th anniversary. Helligso said he thinks the construction will meet that goal.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

50th ANNIVERSARY PROMO VIDEO

video

BUILDING REPAIR UPDATE - 6/21/08

Much progress has been made in the past couple of weeks. The chimney and fire place were removed. I guest we'll have to rename the Fireside Room. The south wall of the sanctuary has been structurally repaired. Work has begun on the repairs to the north sanctuary wall. Helligso Construction has prepared a new estimate for the insurance company. We're praying that it will all be approved and that work will continue without delays. The Daily Astorian interviewed me yesterday for an article that will appear next week concerning storm repairs still ongoing in the county.

Pastor Jerry

Friday, June 13, 2008

DAILY ASTORIAN ARTICLE FROM OCT 1968

Lewis & Clark Bible Church Marks 10th Year in Present Building

LEWIS AND CLARK: "From seed barn to complete church building in 10 years" was reviewed Sunday morning at the Lewis and Clark Bible church. Occasion was the 10th anniversary of church services in the present building. Former members and pastors attended.

Greetings were brought to the group by the Rev. Robert Ray-burn, western district representative for Village Missions. John Petersen, a missionary with Unevangelized Fields Missions, was speaker. The Rev. Harold Maycumber read a history of the church.
A special floral arrangement of gladioli, dahlias and carnations was placed at the stair landing. A large bouquet of bright coral gladioli was placed on the piano and bouquets of yellow gladioli were in front of the pulpit.

A fellowship dinner was served in the afternoon at the Netel grange hail. Arrangements of fall flowers were placed about the rooms and the tables had single dahlias at intervals.

The Rev. Mr. Maycumber was master of ceremonies. The men’s quartette of the church sang "Let the Sunshine In," accompanied by Mrs. Arvo Seppa.

The Rev, Mr. Maycumber read greetings from Mr. and Mrs. Karl Bock and family, Mr. and Mrs. Jack Beach, the Rev, and Mrs. Allen Cummings and family, all of Portland; the Rev, and Mrs. Forrest Livingston and family of Gunnison, Colo.; the Rev. and Mrs. Paul Mason of Cochabaoha, Bolivia; Misses Jean Scott and Katherine Broers of Logan; Miss Irma Porter of Paulina, Mr. and Mrs. William Frey and family of Mount Vernon, Wash.; the Rev. Walter Duff, national chairman of Village Missions and a telegram from the Rev, and Mrs. Marlowe Magnus of Duluth, Minn.
The Rev. Albert Crandall, Miss Clara Jean Fox, John Petersen and Robert Bernard brought greetings in person. The Rev. Mr. Rayburn spoke representing Village Missions and Arvo Seppa spoke in behalf of the church members.

Coming from out of town for the occasion were the Rev. Mr. and Mrs. Crandall and Colleen of Gresham; Mrs. Troy Tread-well of Springdale, Ark.; Mr. and Mrs. Tom Elefritz and Marcella of White Salmon, Wash.; Mr. and Mrs. Robert Bernard of Port Ludlow, Wash.; Miss Clara Jean Fox of Selleck, Wash.; Mr. and Mrs. John Petersen, Jeff, Leslie and Bruce of Belem, Brazil; and the Rev. Robert Rayburn of Graham, Wash.

Lewis and Clark Bible church is an outgrowth of the Netel Community church which began as a Sunday school February 1, 1948 led by Mr. and Mrs. Paul Mason. During the next 10 years pastors were the Rev. Marlowe Magnus, the Rev. Albert Crandall, the Rev. Forrest Livingston and Miss Clara Jean Fox and, for part of one summer, Miss Irma Porter,

The Netel group shared pastors with the Jeffers Gardens Community church until the coming of the Rev. Mr. Livingston in 1955. During his stay it became incorporated as the Netel Community church.

In September, 1958, the Netel church purchased a former seed cleaning plant from Arvo and Hugo Seppa and William Larson Sr. and on October 1, the first service was held, Later that month the church body re-incorporated and changed its name to the "Lewis and Clark Bible church,"

Nothing was done to the building before the first meeting except to sweep it out and put in a few furnishings. Electric heaters were used for the first several weeks until a furnace was installed.
The church has been free from indebtedness for six years. Everything except the building itself and the heating plant has been purchased on a pay-as-you-go basis. Some items have been donated by individuals.

All labor has been donated except the finishing of the ceiling.

The Columbus day storm gave a severe setback to the building program when a third of the roof on one side was blown off but it was covered by insurance and soon repaired.

The Rev. Albert Crandall provided leadership for the new church group in the beginning months. He was assisted by the laymen. Later the Rev. Allen Cummings became a part-time pastor. He was followed by Wil11am Frey who came from Portland each Sunday. In 1963 Village Missions provided the Misses Jean Scott and Katherine Broers for a few months until a pastor was available.

In February, 1964, the Rev. Harold Maycumber, the present pastor, his wife Shirley and children Jill, Bill, Phil and Anne arrived from Kansas City.

There was much activity the past month putting some finishing touches on the building, including a steeple, flag pole and a new front porch. It is planned that a bell will be added soon.

1975 PICTURE OF THE SEED BARN

This is a picture of the old church building and the beginning of the construction of the new building--taken in October 1975.

Pastor Jerry

Celebrating 50 years of holding forth the word of life.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

BUILDING REPAIR UPDATE




We've had a couple of meetings this week--with the engineer, contractor, and insurance representatives. Things are moving along according to plan. These are pictures of the kitchen and the north and south walls of the sanctuary. The north wall will need to be completely rebuilt. The south wall has had the chimney removed and will need additional blocking and strengthening. These projects are ongoing and the roof repairs will happen soon. Praise the Lord for the progress being made. Our goal is for all of the work to be done by our 50th Anniversary celebration - Oct. 12th, 2008.
Lewis and Clark Bible Church
Celebrating 50 years of holding forth the word of life!

Pastor Jerry

PICNIC WITH ANTIOCH BIBLE CHURCH


This past Sunday we invited the folks from Antioch Bible Church in Beaverton, Oregon to join us for our Sunday service and a barbecue afterwards. Pastor Eric Nyborg's message was from James chapter 1, "Be Doers of the Word." We had a great group of folks and the weather cooperated so that we could have our picnic outside. All in all it was a very encouraging time in the Lord!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

MORE THAN A SEED BARN

It was 50 years or so ago. Harriet Pollard remembers because her son who is now 52, was only about 2 when it happened. Harriet and Helen Seppa Leigh (now in heaven with Jesus) were on a walk. As they passed by the seed barn Helen said, "Can't you just see this as a church?" They went inside and looked around. Helen remarked, "The pulpit would go over here." And so the seed of a thought of a building for the newly formed church was planted.

It was just an ordinary seed barn used to store the grass seed that was harvested from the nearby fields. It was dirty and unfinished. It hardly looked like a church! But Helen saw past the externals to what could be and what it would be.

How often do we pass by what is "ordinary" without thinking about what could be or what should be? Ordinary lost people are much like seed barns. Dirty, unfinished, not much to look at. Paul said to a group of believers--"Such were some of you; but you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and in the Spirit of God" (1 Corinthians 6:11).

It is a good thing that God has looked upon us as Helen looked upon that old seed barn. He looked past what we were to what we could be and what we would be in Christ. He chose us, predestined us, adopted us, redeemed us, forgave us, enlightened us, enriched us, and sealed us--all that we might be holy and blameless before Him (Ephesians 1:1-14)."

He took us as we were--dirty and ordinary in sin, and is now transforming us into a holy temple in the Lord (Ephesians 2:21). Thank God for His ability by His grace to transform ordinary lost sinners into saints and true worshippers!

Pastor Jerry

Monday, June 2, 2008

MISSIONARY NEWS FROM THE RASMUSSENs

Greetings Dear Friends at Lewis & Clark Bible Church

Isn’t this the cutest picture? Our friends from PNG sent this to us this morning. This is the local taxi and the driver is certainly getting his money’s worth. J

The days and weeks continue to fly – so we wanted to bring you up to date on what is going on here. We want to express again our thankfulness for prayer – thank you – it means so much.

Our students have all left, except for Joel & Missy Davis and Mike & Kelly McGregor. The Davis’ have a new baby girl (two little girls now) – they will be leaving us the middle of June. Missy will be having some critical surgery within the next few months before they leave for the Philippines sometime next year. I know they would be grateful for prayer. The McGregor’s will be with us for about six months longer. He will be helping in the helicopter department while one of our other pilots is in Indonesia. The others are in the middle of raising support; Bryan and Mellissa Abbott & son, will be leaving for Indonesia in July, Brian and Bailey & wee daughter will be leaving for the Philippines in August. The others hope to leave for the Philippines next year. Our new group of six families will be arriving in July and August.

Daughter, Sherel, Bryanna and wee Emma will be going to Coos Bay, Oregon for Katey’s (Karen’s oldest daughter) pinning – she graduates as an RN, June 14th; all of us are proud of her – she will continue another 3 semesters to get her B.S. in nursing. (They invited “mother, grandmother and great grandmother” along – she is happy to go J as she will be able to see daughter Karen also J) We leave Tucson, June 10th and return on June 24th. Pray for safety! Monty won’t be able to make this Oregon trip due to engine obligations at NTMA – but you can pray for us as we together make a trip into Colorado and Montana, July 10th to August 6th to visit supporters and family.

Karen and Ben need prayer too for safety in travel. They begin their home assignment, June 5th and will be flying home from Brazil, to home in the States (goodness, where is home?). They will be making the long drive from Miami, to Wisconsin and then on to Coos Bay for Katey’s pinning and for some meetings on the West Coast. Ben & Karen will then head back to Wisconsin to help Kelly get settled in Bible College. Pray for housing in Waukesha, Wisconsin for Ben and Karen; they would like to be near their children, Daniel & Amber, Kristyna (2nd year Bible College) and Kelly,( just beginning B.C.), while on home assignment. When they return to Brazil in 2009, it will be just the two of them. Adjusting to two different countries, culture and language, finding housing, traveling, speaking, changes in family isn’t always easy – these things seem to be the “norm” for missionaries - we speak from experience. Pray for their strength, rest and peace in the Lord. The picture at the right is of Monty, with granddaughters Kristyna and Kelly in 1995.

We love you all dearly – and pray for you. Thanks so much for your vital part in our ministry through your love and prayer here at New Tribes Mission Aviation. Blessings dear Friends.
Monty and Kathleen

Sunday, June 1, 2008

HOW I CAME TO LCBC

Pastor Jerry Conklin's Testimony--from the 40th ANV Notebook. Just found the notebook yesterday. And, seeing how today is our 18th Anniversary of being at LCBC, I thought I'd post it. I wrote this ten years ago for the 40th Anniversary.

"How the ministry of Lewis and Clark Bible Church has blessed my life"

Lewis and Clark Bible Church has had a profound influence on my family and over a 28 year period. Here's how .. I grew up in a family of unbelievers. Our entire family was unsaved--all the Grandmas and Grandpas and all of the aunts and uncles on both sides of the family--not a one of them knew the Savior. Sometime in the early 1970's my Uncle Bob (my Mother's younger brother) and Aunt Sara were living in Seaside. They were into the "Hippy" thing and were drinking and doing some drugs. They were lost just like the rest of us.

At that time Paul Hatt was the Pastor here at Lewis and Clark Bible Church. Some of the youth from the church were out doing door-to-door evangelism. Sue Borges and Lavonne Thompson were a part of that group. They knocked at my Uncle Bob's door and invited him to go to church. Evidently Bob and Sarah were having some kind of party at the time and laughed off the invitation, but later Bob considered it and came to church. He actually came in his dirtiest clothes and parked his truck with his loud barking dog close to the church. His plan was to see how long it would take for someone to chase him off. He was surprised, however, when people reached out to him and told him how happy they were to see him there. Somewhere along the line while he was attending this church they heard the gospel and responded and were both saved. As the story goes his long hair got shorter and shorter week by week.

Later he invited my uncle Frank, who was a bartender in Beaverton, Oregon at the time, to come to a Bible study being led by a dear man of God, Don Gillum, who is now in heaven with Jesus. Frank came, with the goal of antagonizing the Bible study leader, later he came to receive Christ as well. Both Frank and Bob eventually went on to study for the ministry and become Pastors. Bob invited me to church one day. My signature is in the visitor log. I first attended Lewis and Clark Bible Church on June 3rd 1973 as a 17 year old unbeliever. I can't remember much about that day. I vaguely remember the old converted Seed Barn. Little did I know then that I would be returning to Pastor the church one day.

After High School I joined the Navy. As time went by I became increasingly discouraged by life and increasingly more aware of my sin. I was fairly certain that there was a God, but I didn't know anything about Him and certainly did not know about His Son Jesus Christ. My Uncle Bob and Uncle Frank and Aunt Becky (who was also saved by this point) were burdened for me and were praying for my salvation. About this time some other friends on board the submarine started attending Faith Baptist Church in Kailua, Oahu, Hawaii. They had also demonstrated a change in their lives. I started attending with them. I had attended other churchs before, but there was something different about the people at Faith Baptist and there was a difference to what they were teaching. It was there that I first clearly understood that God had provided a means of salvation through His Son Jesus Christ. One day Lee Stitcha, a Marine who was involved in the Navigator's, took me aside and explained how I could know Jesus in a personal way. Soon afterwards I trusted in Jesus Christ as my personal Savior and Lord.

Two things from that period in my life stand out in my memory--I had a sense of inner peace in the knowledge that my sins were forgiven (it felt as if a huge burden was lifted from me) and I had a great appetite for reading God's word. I would spend hours at a time reading the Bible. It was all new to me. I didn't know the Old Testament from the New Testament. Prior to that time I didn't know who Jesus was. I didn't know anything about who Israel was or what the cross stood for. I was completely ignorant. I got a hold of a Navigator's Scripture Memory Verse Pak and started memorizing Scripture. My life began to change.

When I got out of the Navy I went to work at Trojan Nuclear Plant. Eventually I found myself at Yankton Baptist Church in St. Helens, Oregon. That is where I met my wife Laura. Her genuine love for God and servant-mindedness continue to inspire me to this day. Eventually I became a senior Training Specialist in the Training Department, a good paying job with a good future. But, more and more I was feeling led to go to Bible School. By this time I was serving as an elder at St. Helens Bible Church and I sensed the call to full time ministry. In 1987 I decided to resign my job at Trojan so that I could train for ministry at Western Conservative Baptist Seminary. My boss appreciated me and wanted to keep me around so he made special arrangements so that I could continue to work part-time in my salary job while 1 went to school. This arrangement, together with my Veteran Benefits helped to pay for my education.

I appreciated my time at Seminary but was anxious to get started in full-time ministry. I had no idea to where we might be called to serve, but was determined to trust God in the matter. As the end of Seminary drew near I applied to and was accepted by Northwest Independent Church Extension as a prospective missionary Pastor. We invited the director, Dr. Roy Sprague, over for dinner one day. He talked to us about all of the various churchs in N.I.C.E. and those needing Pastors--I was impressed by his knowledge of all of the churchs and all of their needs. After he got done he asked us a question, "What kind of ministry do you think that God is calling you to?" I didn't have to think about it, it had been in my mind for months, and so I responded, "I believe that God is calling us to minister in a smaller church on the Oregon coast, something like Lewis and Clark Bible Church." Of course 1 didn't mean this particular church, as far as I knew the church already had a Pastor. I was merely using Lewis & Clark Bible Church as an example of the kind of location and setting that I had in mind.

Some months went by. Several possibilities were brought to our attention. For one reason or another it was obvious that these churches weren't what God had in store for us. We were beginning to get impatient as school was drawing to a close. And then one day we returned home late. There was call on the answering machine. The man had a Norwegian accent and mentioned Roy Sprague's name. It was Vic Albertsen calling to say that Roy Sprague suggested that they call to see if I could come and fill the pulpit as they would be needing to call a new Pastor! Vic's message was quite long. It took two separate phone calls to record all of it. Needless to say we were excited!

We came that first Sunday, June 1st 1990, seventeen years after my last visit to the church. Things were not the same as they had been before. There were only a dozen or so at church that morning. There was a certain sadness and discouragement in the air. The building and the parsonage were in a poor state of repair. There had been talk about whether or not the church would be able to continue. I preached my first sermon from Colossians chapter one on the supremacy of Christ. I talked so fast I doubt whether most of the folks could hear much of what I had to say. I was excited and I was scared, but when we drove away from the church that evening I turned to Laura and remarked, "That's where God wants us to be."

There were some discouraging things in those early days of the ministry. The first month's budget was $600.00. I had to work for a year or two to make ends meet. We would have Sunday evening and prayer meeting services when there would only be three or so. But God was at work, and I was confident that He had called us to the church and that we needed to faithfully serve Him regardless. My uncle Frank told me to remember two things (or maybe it was three)--preach the word, love the people, and remember that ministry is a privilege. And it has been a privilege. I count the people here at Lewis & Clark as my dearest friends. God has blessed us with unity and spiritual growth. We are a church family!.

So, as I think back over some 28 years I wonder where would my family be without the ministry of Lewis and Clark Bible Church? I suppose that God would have found another means to accomplish the salvation of my family members, but how exciting it is for me to come back to the church through which we first heard the gospel message of salvation through Christ. It gives me great delight to see God rebuild His church. I praise God for the ministry of Lewis and Clark Bible Church. The Lord has done great things for us!

Pastor Jerry

1973 LCBC VISITOR BOOK


Here is a page from the 1973 LCBC Visitor Book. My signature is there from 35 years ago. Long before I was saved and longer before I became the Pastor.


Pastor Jerry

Friday, May 30, 2008

REPAIRING THE SHEEP GATE

Nehemiah chapter 3 gives us the account of the work that was done in the rebuilding of the walls of Jerusalem. It is significant that the Sheep Gate is prominent in the account: it is the first and last gate mentioned, it was repaired by the priests, it was consecrated once it was repaired. It was prominent because it had to do with sacrifice, and sacrifice for sin is a prominent theme in the Scriptures.

The third chapter of the Scriptures tell us how an animal was sacrificed to provide garments of skin for Adam and Eve (Genesis 3:21). The last chapter of the Bible speaks of heaven and tells us that "the Lamb shall be in it." (Revelation 22:3). It is noteworthy that the Lord Jesus is referred to as the Lamb of God some 27 times in the book of Revelation. His work on the cross in redeeming lost sinners is the matter of highest priority and is to the praise of the glory of His grace (Ephesians 1:6, 12, 14).

The message concerning Jesus’ sacrifice is the gospel--the glorious gospel (1 Timothy 1:11). It is fair to say, that with respect to the modern church, the Sheep Gate is broken down. The gospel has been downplayed, dressed up, distorted, and distrusted to the extent that it is hardly recognizable in some churches anymore. If the church is to fulfill its God-given mission the Sheep Gate must be rebuilt and consecrated. The gospel message must be faithfully proclaimed and defended as the first priority of the church. The preaching of the gospel was Paul’s first priority: "For I determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and Him crucified" (1 Corinthians 2:2). He delivered it to the Corinthians as the matter "of first importance" (1 Corinthians 15:3). He believed in it "as the power of God unto salvation to everyone who believes" (Romans 1:16). In our concern for the welfare and effectiveness of our churches lets make sure the Sheep Gate is repaired and consecrated as a matter of first priority. If it isn’t our first priority, we might as well forget the rest of the wall.

Pastor Jerry

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

BUILDING REPAIR UPDATE

Construction work on the church has resumed! Though we are still waiting for the engineer to finish his engineering plans for the majority of the repairs, there are some things that can be done. The insurance company has given the contractor the okay to get started with these repairs and they started today. These repairs include: removal of the chimney; removal of additional sheet rock from the north and south walls; the installation of additional temporary support members in the Sanctuary.

Pastor Jerry

OBVIOUSLY CHRISTIAN

"If you were accused of being a Christian, would there be any evidence with which to convict you?" I raised this question in a recent sermon. It is a Biblical and legitimate question. There ought to be a difference in the lives of those who claim to be Christians. Christians should act Christianly. As Jesus declared, "You will know them by their fruits" (Matt. 7:16). And how should they act? The Scriptures speak to many things that should be different about us, but perhaps the difference is best summarized in 1 John 3:10, "By this the children of God and the children of the devil are OBVIOUS: anyone who does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor the one who does not love his brother." Amongst other virtues, righteousness and love, are distinguishing characteristics of our Lord Jesus Christ. They are likewise distinguishing characteristics of His followers. Are Christlike righteousness (1 John 2:29) and Christlike love (1 John 3:16; 1 Cor. 13:4-7) apparent in your life--to the extent that your identity as a child of God is obvious? Sobering question! Lord help us by your grace, as we walk in the Spirit, to be "lights in the world" in the "midst of a crooked and perverse generation" (Phil. 2:15).

Pastor Jerry

Friday, May 23, 2008

LETTER TO THE EDITOR

I'm a part of the REDUCE UNDERAGE DRINKING TASK FORCE for Clatsop County. Here is a letter by me that was published in Wednesday's Daily Astorian.

Letter: Timely presentation

"Kudos to Kelly Pierce and Andrea Frantz for volunteering their time to do the presentation on alcohol and drug use at Astoria High School recently, mentioned in The Daily Astorian May 8 article, "'Scared straight' approach is wake-up call for AHS students." The article included some sobering survey results, "Of 39 students, only two had never drank alcohol. Almost half admitted consuming five or more alcoholic drinks in a single setting. Two girls said they drank until they passed out." Classroom teacher Dena Marsch made an important observation, "The sad thing is it's out there, it's easy to get, and unfortunately, they're out there using it, and a lot of parents think it's OK."

Like Pierce, most of us have been impacted in some way by this problem. Her grandmother was killed by a drunk driver. Our family has experienced both death of loved ones and theft of property in situations that can be traced back to underage drinking. A part of the tragic consequences associated with underage drinking is, of course, what happens to the teens themselves. Teens who drink are more prone to alcoholism, future marital problems, job loss and other difficulties. Instead of appropriating life skills that will help them to deal with life's challenges, they attempt to escape them with drugs or alcohol, only to find that their problems then multiply instead. I believe that teens want to succeed apart from drugs and alcohol. Far too often, we doubt their abilities and predispose them to failure by our attitudes.

There are many people in this community, like these two volunteers, who are doing all that they can to confront this issue. A Reduce Underage Drinking Task Force meets monthly to address Clatsop County's underage drinking problem. The Commission on Children and Families has identified alcohol and drug abuse as one of the most serious concerns in our county. Teachers, police officers, juvenile correction employees, drug and alcohol counselors and health care workers are doing all that they can.

But Marsch's comment, "and a lot of parents think it's OK," gets to the heart of the problem. As long as parents dismiss the problem as "a rite of passage," there can be no long-term solution. Parents have a God-given obligation to protect their children from harm. Underage drinking is against the law, but more than that, it is a plague in our community that leads to much harm. There have always been teens who drink. And I'm not so naive to believe that they are all going to stop. But parents should not be the ones who are encouraging them or even buying their alcohol. With graduation drawing near, the presentation by Pierce and Frantz couldn't be timelier.

Pastor Jerry L. Conklin
Lewis & Clark Bible Church
Astoria

Monday, May 19, 2008

HOLY CLUB

Several people asked me for a copy of the questions that I referred to at the end of my Sermon on Sunday. These were questions that the members of the Holy Club, to which John Wesley belonged, asked themselves each day as a part of their daily devotions:

1. Am I consciously or unconsciously creating the impression that I am better than I really am?
2. Am I honest in all my acts and words, or do I exaggerate?
3. Do I confidentially pass on to another what was told to me in confidence?
4. Can I be trusted?
5. Am I a slave to dress, friends, work or habits?
6. Am I self-conscious, self-pitying, or self-justifying?
7. Did the Bible live in me today?
8. Do I give it time to speak to me every day?
9. Am I enjoying prayer?
10. When did I last speak to someone else about my faith?
11. Do I pray about the money I spend?
12. Do I get to bed on time and get up on time?
13. Do I disobey God in anything?
14. Do I insist upon doing something about which my conscience is uneasy?
15. Am I defeated in any part of my life?
16. Am I jealous, impure, critical, irritable, touchy, or distrustful?
17. How do I spend my spare time?
18. Am I proud?
19. Do I thank God that I am not as other people, especially as the Pharisees who despised the publican?
20. Is there anyone whom I fear, dislike, disown, criticize, hold a resentment toward or disregard?
21. Do I grumble or complain constantly?
22. Is Christ real to me?

GREG ENGEBRETSON'S BLOG

Greg Engebretson has published several great items for this blog. He has now created his own blog which can be reached at: http://pondertheword.blogspot.com. You can also reach Greg's blog from the links section of this blog.

Pastor Jerry

THIS LITTLE CHURCH STAYED HOME

I'm reading Gary Gilley's book, "This Little Church Stayed Home." This quote is from the preface:"

"Whatever else the church of God does, it must excel at undergirding and proclaiming the truth. I believe a local church can fail at many things, but it must not fail at holding forth the truth of the living God. To fail at this is to fail at the primary mission given to the church. The church is not free to create truth, to supplement truth, to alter truth, or to selectively obey truth. The church is "to exhort in sound doctrine and to refute those who contradict" (Titus 1:9). The church is to "contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints" (Jude 1:3). The church is "to preach the word; be ready, in season, and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction" (2 Tim. 4:2). To not accept these commands as a sacred trust is to totally miss the most important reason for the church's existence. But as we will see in the chapters that follow, the twenty-first century, engulfed as it is in postmodernism, is not an environment in which truth can easily flourish."

Pastor Jerry

Sunday, May 18, 2008

PRAYER, WILL, & EMOTIONS

We had a great discussion on prayer in our Men's prayer time last Saturday. This excerpt, a quote from J. Sidlow Baxter from "Disciplines of a Godly Man," by R. Kent Hughes, is relevant to our discussion.

"As never before, my will and I stood face to face. I asked my will the straight question, "Will, are you ready for an hour of prayer?" Will answered, "Here I am, and I'm quite ready, if you are." So Will and I linked arms and turned to go for our time of prayer. At once all the emotions began pulling the other way and protesting, "We're not coming." I saw Will stagger just a bit, so I asked, "Can you stick it out Will?" and Will replied, "Yes, if you can." So Will went, and we got down to prayer, dragging those wriggling, obstreperous emotions with us. It was a stuggle all the way through. At one point, when Will and I were in the middle of an earnest intercession, I suddenly found one of those traitorous emotions had snared my imagination and had run off to the golf course; and it was all I could do to drag the wicked rascal back. A bit later I found another of the emotions had sneaked away with some off-guard thoughts and was in the pulpit, two days ahead of schedule, preaching a sermon that I had not yet finished preparing!

"At the end of that hour, if you had asked me, "Have you had a 'good time'?" I would have had to reply, "No, it has been a wearying wrestle with contrary emotions and a truant imagination from beginning to end." What is more, that battle with the emotions continued for between two and three weeks, and if you had asked me at the end of that period, "Have you had a 'good time' in your daily praying?" I would have had to confess, "No, at times it has seemed as though the heavens were brass, and God too distant to hear, and the Lord Jesus strangely aloof, and prayer accomplishing nothing."

"Yet something was happening. For one thing, Will and I really taught the emotions that we were completely independent of them. Also, one morning, about two weeks after the contest began, just when Will and I were going for another time of prayer, I overheard one of the emotions whisper to the other, "Come on, you guys, it's no use wasting any more time resisting: they'll go just the same." That morning, for the first time, even though the emotions were still suddenly uncooperative, they were at least quiescent, which allowed Will and me to get on with prayer undistractedly.

"Then, another couple of weeks later, what do you think happened? During one of our prayer times, when Will and I were no more thinking of the emotions than of the man in the moon, one of the most vigourous of the emotions unexpectedly sprang up and shouted, "Hallelujah!" at which all the other emotions exclaimed, "Amen!" And for the first time the whole of my being--intellect, will, and emotions--was united in one coordinated prayer-operation."