Faith Facing Conflict

Published: Monday, 21 August 2017

Red DeerThis sermon was given by Geoff Pound at ABC on 20 August 2017. It is the third in the ‘Journey in Faith’ series on the life of Abraham and Sarah. The sermon manuscript concludes with some Questions for Personal Reflection and Group study.

Scripture Reading: Genesis 13: 1 - 18

An article emerged recently that gives lots of tips for students writing their university admissions essay, for crafting a CV or for nailing that job interview.[1]

The author highlights this point: “Don’t all the time brag about your achievements. Instead recount the times you’ve struggled and even better the times you’ve failed.” She says, “Failure is gold! Figure out what you’ve learned from failure. Tell about that. Be honest… Just remember those exhausted admission or employment officers sitting around the table in the winter. Jolt them out of their sugar coma and give them something to be excited about.”

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Faith Undercover

Published: Monday, 14 August 2017

This sermon, the second in our series on Abraham and Sarah, was delivered by Keren McClelland on August 13, 2017. Some questions for personal reflection follow the text.

Genesis 12:10 - 20 Wendyterrarium KMc

This week I asked Ken whether he had been into WellSpring to see Wendy’s paintings. He turned around and reappeared some 10 minutes later.

I was intrigued… “Ken, what were you drawn to?”

“Oh, the ones with the bottles…”

I said, “They’ve all got bottles!”

There are a lot of bottles... or terrariums. When you go down and take a look I’d love to know which one/ones reflect you. Some are self-contained, while in others the life is bursting out or reflecting the wider setting.

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Faith ventures forth

Published: Monday, 07 August 2017

This sermon was presented by Geoff Pound at Ashburton Baptist Church on 6 August 2017. It is the first in the ‘Journey of Faith’ series about the story of Abraham and Sarah. Some questions for personal reflection and group study are at the end of this manuscript.

Reading: Genesis 11: 26 - 12:9 Abraham journey GP

The language teacher, Daniel Rose, recently confessed that every week he studiously reads the obituaries in the newspaper.[1] He admits that some might wonder at his morbid fascination with the recently deceased and think such a habit would be depressing. But Daniel said, “It’s quite the opposite. It’s invigorating. It’s energizing. It renews my faith in humanity.”

He says: “The obits offer up the real inhabitants of our world…not the airbrushed celebrities. Real people living real lives…People who serve, people who love puzzles, people who dance, students who pay their way through Uni, folk who visit hospitals, people who bake homemade cinnamon rolls.”

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Cast all your Anxiety on God

Published: Monday, 29 May 2017

This sermon was presented at Ashburton Baptist Church on 28 May 2017 by Geoff Pound. It is the final in the series in the biblical letter called 1st Peter. The sermon manuscript is followed by some questions for personal study and group discussion.

Scripture Readings:

1 Peter 4:12 – 14; 1 Peter 5:6 - 11

Each Thursday evening from six o’clock, about 50 or 60 people from our church and community gather in our Café. At what used to be our Evening Service, we now eat a delicious meal and we’re gladdened by nourishing friendship.

At this HUB community meal, we have everyone from toddlers to retirees. Why don’t you come one night to this organic, home grown experience, to taste and see?

Sometimes after the meal many go into our church hall to let off some steam. Some weeks back, several were playing indoor soccer when one of the boys kicked the ball high and it hit the cross fixed on the far wall.

One seven year old girl caught the rebounding ball in her hands and said to the young offender, “You’re not allowed to hit the plus sign!”. To which he said, “That’s not a plus sign. That’s the cross.”

What spirituality on the soccer pitch! It makes you think of the great challenge that we have with children and young people in our community growing up with very little awareness of Christ and spiritual things. As a church this is one the goals we want to kick.

As we come today to study the last page of Peter’s first letter to believers scattered across what is modern day Turkey, we see him pointing to two pieces of wood and saying, “That’s not a plus sign. That’s the cross.”

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Creative Accounting

Published: Monday, 22 May 2017

This sermon is part of the biblical series in the first letter of Peter. It was delivered by Geoff Pound at ABC on 21st May 2017. The sermon manuscript is followed by questions for personal study and group discussion. (It is a short, textual sermon because we had a full service, including an interview on work in Malawi and this was followed by a Church Meeting and lunch.)

Scripture Reading: 1 Peter 3:13 - 22 creative accountingB GP

The American pastor, John Claypool, told about a significant experience in his development. As a 10 year old, one Sunday afternoon, he was playing in the backyard with his neighbour who was a new boy who’d lived in many countries of the world.

When John’s mother called him to come in his friend was upset because their play was disrupted. The boy from next door asked why John had to leave.

Without sensing he was walking into a landmine, John said, “I’ve got to go in and get dressed to go to church”. At the sound of that word his face darkened and he said, “Church. Do you believe in that stuff? My father says that anyone who thinks there is a God is just a plain fool.” 

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Living Stones

Published: Monday, 15 May 2017

living stonesThis sermon was delivered by Geoff Pound to the Ashburton Baptist Church on 14 May 2017 (Mother’s Day) and is part of a series in 1st Peter. The sermon manuscript is followed by some questions for personal and group study.

Scripture Reading: 1 Peter 2:1 - 10

A man went to his regular hairdresser and the barber asked the usual question, “How do you want your hair cut this time?”

The man said, “Would you cut my hair a little longer on this side and shorter on this side?”

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In His Steps

Published: Monday, 08 May 2017

070517 In His Steps GPThis sermon, in the series in 1 Peter, was presented at the Ashburton Baptist Church on 7 May 2017 by Geoff Pound. This sermon manuscript is followed by some questions for personal/group study and discussion. The footnotes contain extra information to aid study.

Scripture Reading: 1 Peter 2: 11 - 25

On our first visit to the United States of America we got off the plane at Los Angeles and we entered the airport building. Approaching customs and immigration we had a choice of two lanes:

The first lane had the sign, ‘US Citizens’ and the other lane was marked, ‘Aliens’.

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What did you do in the war, Grandpa?

Published: Thursday, 04 May 2017

their courageKeren's interview in the service on April 30th was of James Anderson who has just completed a book on the 10th Field Ambulance of WW1. He reflected on his grandfather's diaries but also other members of the unit including Percy Samson. There are two "library" copies you could borrow from James and Susan. Copies are also available to purchase. Recently an ABC program "You Can't Ask That" also focused on war veterans in a worthwhile way.

There were a number of things that struck Keren as the diaries unfolded:

Read more: What did you do in the war, Grandpa?