Monday, January 16, 2012

Watered Down

One of the greatest reasons for America’s moral washout is the watered down sermons coming from our pulpits!


Sunday, January 15, 2012

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Lima at Night

Not sure where Dane got this picture, but it's pretty cool!

The Lord's Prayer

Tomorrow night we will be taking a close look at "The Lord's Prayer". The Bible Study will start at 6:00 p.m. in Chase Hall at the Union Church. Bring a friend and a Bible!

Friday, January 13, 2012

New vs. Old

In the Old Testament, the sheep died for the shepherd. In the New Testament, the Shepherd died for the sheep.

Suffering

“Those who preach that Christians who are in the will of God will not suffer have not meditated much on the cross.” - Wiersbe

The Snare of Approval

Men naturally fear what others think about them. But when they do, they put themselves in the snare of popular approval. The only way out of the snare is to fear God (Pro.29:25).

The Fear of the Lord

"A man who fears men will not fear God and a man who fears God will not fear men."

The Girl Scouts-Planned Parenthood

The Girl Scouts-Planned Parenthood link (OneNewsNow.com)

Well, this shouldn't surprise anyone. Unless, of course, they've had their head in the sand for some time.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

January 2012 Update

Dear Friends and Family,

We pray that each of you had a great Christmas and New Year. Wow! It just seems like yesterday that we were all worried about Y2K (Year 2000) and now it's 2012. Man, time sure does go by fast.

Our last day of school for this semester was on December 16th and we're off until January 25th when the staff returns and then the first day of the second semester will be on February 1st.

During the break, we've been keeping ourselves pretty busy. The boys are spending two hours every day working on their Liberty Home Bible Institute curriculum. It's an eighty hour Bible Diploma from Liberty University that they will be able to transfer into their undergrad program once they get there.

Dane will graduate in May and he has already been excepted for the Fall 2012 semester at Liberty University where he wants to work on some type of pre-law degree. He's not sure right now which one, but there's no pressure for him to make that decision right now. He just needs to focus on his last semester of high school. Right now, he is the class valedictorian. Yes, mom and dad are proud (in a humble, Christian sort of way). Also, Dane received his rank of Eagle last August!

Brandon is a junior this year and he is doing very well academically as well. As a matter of fact, it's his best year ever and we are proud of him.

They both stay pretty busy with their music as well. In addition to helping me lead worship on Sunday mornings, they lead worship for my Sunday night Bible study, their youth group and the school's chapel services. They have also been asked to play again at Calvary Chapel Lima's surf camp at the end of this month and are planning a back to school concert as well that they call "Friday Night Live".

Jannett is doing well. She is using her time off to work on her last class to renew her teacher's license. She is pretty excited to be almost done with it. She's had to take a total of nine hours, but it is required by our school that teachers keep their licenses up to date. Makes sense.

As for me, I'm still busy with my school as well. I just recently wrapped up my last class to upgrade my teacher's license. I'm glad that's over. I am also still in school at Liberty and am scheduled to graduate this fall.

The Lord has really blessed us with the International Christian School of Lima. They are an awesome group of people and a privilege to minister with. This past semester, we had fourteen students come to faith in Christ in the high school. As chaplain that gives me an awesome opportunity to further speak into their lives and many times the lives of their families. Several of them are coming to my evening Bible study as well.

We have also been very busy serving at the church. The boys and I lead worship on Sunday morning and that is a total blessing to serve the Lord with your children. We are really going to miss Dane when he goes home for college in the summer. He's our only bass player! :/

I am also still teaching a Bible study every Sunday evening at 6:00 p.m. We are currently going through the book of Matthew. I record the messages and place them on my blog at www.dwaynespearman.org.

Prayer Requests
* Please pray for Dane as he finishes up his last semester of high school and that he will stay focused. "Senioritis" usually hits around this time. Also, please pray as that we are still waiting to hear back from the university about his scholarships, grants, financial aid, etc... for the fall.

* Please pray for Brandon. He has been given an opportunity to intern at Calvary Chapel Dallas this coming summer in their youth and worship ministries. However, the finances are proving to be a problem. Just the airfare is going to be around $1200.00 and then he'll need some spending money. He is going to be sending out a letter to friends and family with more information on how they can pray and possibly help financially. It would be an awesome opportunity for him to "get his feet wet" in ministry which is where he believes the Lord is calling him.

* Please pray that the Lord would provide us with another apartment. Our landlord told us in December that he and his family are going to be moving back in May. Rent has skyrocketed since we got here in 2009 and our budget is pretty tight.

* Please also pray for our teachers as they return from their vacations at home with friends and family. This is usually a very rough time for them because saying goodbyes is always hard.

* Please pray for our teachings schedules this coming semester. I will be teaching Bi
ble Doctrines, Revelation, Genesis and New Testament Survey. Jannett will be teaching drama, middle school Bible, elementary computers and yearbook. On top of that we both oversee the school's community service program and continue to minister to the students, staff and their families through my chaplain and Jannett's member care responsibilities. We tag team in those areas quite well!

The Lord certainly does continue to provide for us here through friends and family like you and we appreciate the sacrifice and prayers that you offer up on our behalf. Thank you so very much for being a part of our ministry here in Lima, Peru.

Please keep in touch with us because we love to hear from each of you!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

The Elect

When the Bible speaks of the "elect", it is referring to the saints and not the aints.

Predestination

Predestination has everything to do with being conformed to the image of Christ (Romans 8:29) and absolutely nothing to do with salvation.

Friday, January 6, 2012

When to Leave a Church

Here is an interesting article by John MacArthur about when to leave a church.

When Should People Leave Their Church?

Leaving a church is not something that should be done lightly. Too many people abandon churches for petty reasons. Disagreements over simple matters of preference are never a good reason to withdraw from a sound, Bible-believing church. Christians are commanded to respect, honor, and obey those whom God has placed in positions of leadership in the church (Heb. 13:7, 17). However, there are times when it becomes necessary to leave a church for the sake of one's own conscience, or out of a duty to obey God rather than men. Such circumstances would include:
 
If heresy on some fundamental truth is being taught from the pulpit (Gal. 1:7-9).

If the leaders of the church tolerate seriously errant doctrine from any who are given teaching authority in the fellowship (Rom. 16:17).

If the church is characterized by a wanton disregard for Scripture, such as a refusal to discipline members who are sinning blatantly (1 Cor. 5:1-7).

If unholy living is tolerated in the church (1 Cor. 5:9-11).

If the church is seriously out of step with the biblical pattern for the church (2 Thess. 3:6, 14).

If the church is marked by gross hypocrisy, giving lip service to biblical Christianity but refusing to acknowledge its true power (2 Tim. 3:5).

This is not to suggest that these are the only circumstances under which people are permitted to leave a church. There is certainly nothing wrong with moving one's membership just because another church offers better teaching or more opportunities for growth and service. But those who transfer their membership for such reasons ought to take extreme care not to sow discord or division in the church they are leaving. And such moves ought to be made sparingly. Membership in a church is a commitment that ought to be taken seriously.

Carnal Expertise

"The mainstream evangelical movement gave up the battle against worldliness half a century ago, and then completely capitulated to pragmatism just a couple of decades ago. After all, most of the best-known megachurches that rose to prominence after 1985 were built on a pragmatic philosophy of giving "unchurched" people whatever it takes to make them feel comfortable. Why would anyone criticize what "works"?

Whole churches have thus deliberately immersed themselves in "the culture"--by which they actually mean "whatever the world loves at the moment." We now have a new breed of trendy churches whose preachers can rattle off references to every popular icon, every trifling meme, every tasteless fashion, and every vapid trend that captures the fickle fancy of the postmodern secular mind.

Worldly preachers seem to go out of their way to put their carnal expertise on display--even in their sermons. In the name of connecting with "the culture" they want their people to know they have seen all the latest programs on MTV; familiarized themselves with all the key themes of "South Park"; learned the lyrics to countless tracks of gangsta rap and heavy metal music; and watched who-knows-how-many R-rated movies. They seem to know every fad top to bottom, back to front, and inside out. They've adopted both the style and the language of the world--including lavish use of language that used to be deemed inappropriate in polite society, much less in the pulpit. They want to fit right in with the world, and they seem to be making themselves quite comfortable there." - John MacArthur

Martin Luther's Puppy

One day, Martin Luther's little puppy happened to be at the table, he looked for a morsel from his master, and watched with  open mouth and motionless eyes; to which Martin Luther replied, 'Oh, if I could only pray the way this dog watches the meat! All his thoughts are concentrated on the piece of meat. Otherwise he has no thought, wish or hope."