January 2021 Newsletter

News and announcements from the Immanuel Leidy's Church community.

Pastor’s Column

One Thing!

What is the one thing you desire this new year? Many people have made or will make a New Year’s resolution: I’m going to lose weight by eating healthier and getting more exercise. I’m going to spend more time with my family, my friends, and /or my spouse. I’m going to work hard at getting out of debt. I’m going to limit my time on social media and watching television. I’m going to turn off my phone during family mealtimes. I’m going to read through the entire Bible this year. I’m going to pray more.

All of these would be considered good resolutions; don’t you think? Nevertheless, please take time to muse over this question before you give your answer. Why, you ask? Because such pledges may or may not be the one thing God wants of you this coming year. Your one thing resolution may be too specific, or too narrow, or even too reasonable.  Have you taken any time to ask God what is the one thing He wants of you? If you have not done so, it may be that you do not think God will answer you, or you are so tentative about what God may reveal, or you may have discounted your worthiness in Christ to ask God to disclose His will to you personally.

Whatever the reason, we must know that God does have His plan for our lives, being members of the Body of Christ. God has chosen you, called you, redeemed you, regenerated you, justified you, indwells you, adopted you, sanctifies you, and promises to glorify you. So, what is wrong with asking our heavenly Father what He wants of us?

If you and I are going to discover the one thing God wants of us, we must turn to the Scriptures. For God’s revelation of Himself and His will for mankind is only known from the inspired Word. Our Creator, God, who created us in His image and likeness, and who has re-created us in Christ Jesus, knows the plans He has for us. As the prophet Jeremiah wrote to the people of God in exile, in Jeremiah 29.11-14a, “For I know the plans that I have for you, declares the LORD, plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope. Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you, declares the LORD, ….”

When David writes Psalm 27 about having a fearless trust in the LORD, he says in verse 4, One thing I have asked from the LORD, that I shall seek: That I may dwell in the house of the LORD all the days of my life. To behold the beauty of the LORD and to meditate in His temple.” Despite all adversaries and days of troubles, David exclaims, “My heart will not fear … I shall be confident … I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the LORD.”

In the Gospel of Luke, when Jesus enters the home of Martha and Mary, “Mary … was listening to the Lord’s word, seated at His feet. But Martha was distracted with all her preparations …”. When Martha says to Jesus to tell Mary, “to help me.” “… the Lord answered and said to her, “Martha, Martha you are worried and bothered about so many things; but only a few things are necessary, really only one, for Mary has chosen the good part, which shall not be taken away from her.” Luke 10.38-42

And in Philippians 3, after listing a litany of accomplishments of religious adherence as to the righteousness in accordance with the Law; those things that were thought to be gain to Paul, he now “counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ.”

There is much more to Paul’s teaching on this subject, which we cannot address in this article; but suffice it to say, what Paul gains in Christ trumps all that he attained before knowing Jesus Christ. For the Apostle Paul says this in verses 13-14, “Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead.  I press on toward the goal of the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

From the OT to the NT, we have seen that God is good and He has fruitful plans for His people who seek Him with their whole heart. To seek God is the one thing that should be our life’s quest, so that we may dwell in the presence of the LORD all the days of our lives. Despite the adversities and troubles in this life, we, with fearless hearts, and confident wills, trust the LORD. We must not be distracted by the demands of this life, but choose the one thing that will not be taken away from us. We are to forget what lies behind, and to pursue the one thing that lies ahead of us.

May this be the one thing we accomplish all the days of our lives: “I press on toward the goal of the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” This is the one thing that will never be taken away from you!

To the glory of God
Steven L. Myers

January Pulpit Schedule

3rd  – The Aim in Life is Christ – Numbers 25:1-18; Acts 15:6-21; Philippians 3:1-11
We all have goals in life. If you are young, it may be to finish high school and then go to college or a trade school to prepare for your life’s work. If you are out of school, it may involve getting married and having a family, and if you are older it may involve planning for retirement. All of these are considered worthy goals; yet the primary goal for a believer’s life should be knowing Christ! We will examine this biblical truth in the hope of making our chief aim in life Christ.

10th Reach the Goal by Standing Firm – Nehemiah 4:1-23; Matthew 18:1-14; Philippians 3:12-4:1-9
Standing up for what you believe requires deep conviction and decisive action. It can mean that you willfully surrender certain aspects of your life in order to solidify your beliefs and practices. This exchange of a person’s past to reach forward to his greater purpose involves a transformation. Today, may we learn more about how to follow God’s greater purpose as believers in Christ through the inspired instruction and example given by the Apostle Paul.   

17th – God Provides for His People – Genesis 22:1-19; John 3:1-21; Philippians 4:10-21
God is the Creator and Sustainer of the heavens and the earth, of all things visible and invisible. As such, we, as His creatures, are created in His image and likeness, and we receive life, breath, health, and all things needed to live and prosper in this world. But the greatest provision from God toward us is the gift of His only begotten Son, the Lord Jesus Christ. As we rejoice in the LORD as Jehovah-jireh, may we know more fully God’s loving provision of salvation in His beloved Son.

24th – Providential Lovingkindness – Genesis 25:19-26, Malachi 1:1-5, Romans 9:10-16
God sovereignly rules through the works of creation and providence.  Without the Lord’s providential care, all humanity is lost, and any certainty of righteousness in the Lord is impossible.  In good times and bad, Christians must celebrate the providential care of the Lord in their lives.  It is an anchor to the weary soul and a comfort in times of distress.

31st – True Worship- Genesis 4:1-5, Leviticus 22:17-25, Malachi 1:6-2:9, Mark 11:15-18
From the earliest generations right worship of God has included pure and spotless offerings.  Though the Lord Jesus has become the perfect sacrifice, Christians must continue to worship the Lord in a right manner.  Those who have offered the lame and sick as acceptable offerings to the Lord have consistently proved a lack of true faith. Do not be fooled; God is not mocked.  Honor the Lord and worship Him rightly.

Within the Fellowship

  • Congratulations to Tim and Rachel Leidy at the birth of a son, Jonas James . May God be with them as they grow in Him.
  • Our sincere Christian sympathy to Bonnie Pross and family at the death of her husband Les, and to Marcy Kirkpatrick and family at the death of her father, Paul Wile. May God be with them  at this difficult time.

From the Pastor to Youth & Children

Labels can be useful.  Don’t believe me?  Just ask anyone who has gone on a honeymoon only to return and find all of their canned goods stripped of labels. Dinner suddenly becomes an experiment in fusion cooking. Afterall without a label no one can tell if dinner will come with green beans, canned peaches, or pitted black olives. Leaving culinary catastrophes to one side, labels can be useful in all sorts of ways.  They can help us detect poison and fill our cars with the right type of fuel. Yet, labels can also be damaging and difficult to remove. How should people who follow Christ think about labels in life?

 By age, I am at the far end (that is to say older end) of the millennial generation. Because I had an older brother (and sought to copy just about everything he did), I have never particularly relished the label of millennial. In fact, I do not really enjoy any labels at all. I grew up in a time and place where labels were eschewed. In my youth and teenage years, my peers were frustrated when parents and society would try to categorize their actions and attitudes. I remember a coworker once calling into question the results of a personality test saying that at 6’ 1” it was unlikely he would fit into such a tiny personality box. There is some wisdom and truth in recognizing that the labels we apply to people are not likely adequate in describing them. At the same time, the youth of my generation created confusion as they rejected the basic structures of society. 

In the years following my generation, the pendulum has swung to the other extreme.  Current cultural trends have sought to find the most complete labels to attach to individuals (and groups). Individuals around the country have grabbed hold of titles along the LGBTQ+ spectrum, separated themselves along group identities of oppression, and sought to promote the character of their group in the wider world. Ironically, individuals seeking to express themselves in this way have given away any identity or individuality to the groups to which they belong. 

In the last forty years, both of these extremes have presented themselves and both have caused confusion and difficulty. How should we navigate the use of labels? We need to think carefully about the labels we use and apply to others. After all, people made in the image of God are more complicated than canned goods. God’s people need to remember that they HAVE BEEN BOUGHT WITH A PRICE. As a result of the work of Christ to redeem His people, we belong to Him. We are to bear His aroma (and His label) in our thoughts, words, and deeds. In short, we should celebrate the identification as a Christian. It turns out, if we bear the label of Christian, the others tend to fall away. 

As the calendar turns from 2020 to 2021, take time to examine the manner in which you define yourself. Is it by your political party or ideology? Is it by your family, job, or lifestyle? May the Lord, as through the apostle Paul, MANIFEST THROUGH US THE SWEET AROMA OF THE KNOWLEDGE OF HIM IN EVERY PLACE. May we take up that aroma (or label) and proudly follow our Savior wherever He leads.

To the Praise of His Glory,
Michael W. Nowling

Issues & Answers

It is sometimes said, “I don’t need theology, I just need to know who Jesus is”. But as soon as you describe who Jesus is and why he came into the world, you are into theology! Last year, The Spiritual Council of Leidy’s Church rewrote our Statement of Faith in order to expand upon our doctrinal beliefs in light of a world that is increasingly rejecting Jesus and biblical truth.

Over the early part of 2021, the Issues & Answers Class will be exploring our new Statement of Faith with the aim of answering the question, “What does ‘All the Bible for all of life’ really mean; that is, what is the relationship between our statement of faith and practical Christian living or practical theology?  To do this, we will explore the specifics of reformed theology and discuss ways in which it not only plays out in a proper understanding of scripture, but how that understanding impacts the way we think and act in all areas of life.  

Pulpit Committee Update

It’s hard to believe but we are approaching the end of 2020 and looking forward to the new year. This new year brings to light that the committee has been meeting for almost a full year and God has been good. We are entering the new year very encouraged as we have many positive developments. One applicant has completed two interviews and we are scheduling an opportunity to see him preach live as we have only been able to listen to his sermons over the internet. One applicant has completed a first interview and we are hoping to schedule a second interview. We are also exploring a first interview with a third applicant. Praise God!

As a committee we thought it would be encouraging for you to know the activity for the last three months. We have received 42 applications, of those applications we scrutinized and, as available, listened to sermons of 15 those applicants. From those efforts we conducted a total of 5 interviews.

A number of congregants have shared thoughts with us on various potential applicants and we want to thank you for doing that. One of the men we are currently interviewing came to us as a recommendation from a congregant.

We know for some this process is dragging out and is becoming insufferable. We want to encourage all of you that God is truly at work in this process and He has a man selected already for the role of Senior pastor at our church. One of the best ways for you to encourage yourself through this time is to pray for us as a committee. Pray for our discernment, our encouragement through the steps, our families as the enemy seeks to distract us from the Lord’s calling and for our forbearance and patience.

Thank you all for your support and encouragement and may the Lord bless you.

Spiritual Vitality Takes: Spiritual Renewal

As I write this article about the Spiritual Leadership Retreat, the first real snowstorm of the year, a nor’easter, has blown in with potential snowfall ranging between 6 inches to 12 inches. Winds from this storm are estimated to reach gusts up to 40-50 mph and the wind driven snow will blanket our landscape with a cold wintry bed of white snowfall, covering all the imperfections on the ground to make everything look pristine and clean.

Would it not be great if such an event, as a snowstorm, could spiritually cover the imperfections of our hearts and souls to truly make us pristine and clean. As men, we are called to be spiritual leaders in our homes and in Christ’s church. We need to be spiritually strong and spiritually cleansed and renewed to know God and His will for our lives, and then for the people we are called to minister to, whether they be our family members or our church members.

With all of this in mind, I want to challenge all our men who are serving as leaders at home and in the church to make a commitment to attend a Spiritual Leadership Retreat, being held at Harvey Cedars Bible Conference on February 26-27, 2021. The central purpose of this men’s spiritual leadership retreat is to deepen our relationship with God and to clarify His will for us as men. For we are called to be led and energized by the Holy Spirit with the Word to shepherd others to become faithful followers of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Dr. Timothy Witmer, a husband, father, pastor and seminary professor and Christian author, will be our special guest speaker and mentor throughout this weekend together. Tim knows firsthand many of the challenges we as men face in this world as we seek to live out the servant-leaders’ role in the contexts of family and church life. He intends to present valuable biblical insights on how we, as men, can develop more into the godly men God wants us to be. Also, Tim will practically challenge us on growing spiritually strong by taking proven biblical steps that help to bring about personal spiritual renewal with the Lord.

Unreached People Groups

Currently, there are about 7.75 billion people alive on planet earth. Of that number, some 3.23 billion are part of Unreached People Groups [UPG]. The vast majority of those UPG are located in Asia and Africa. Some of these UPGs stretch across several countries (in Africa, for instance), while UPGs are in vast enough countries to be contained therein (in India and China, for example).

The task of the Church is to take the Good News to those UPGs, to those who have never heard the name of Jesus, have never heard His message, and have never known anyone who has experienced Christ’s redeeming work in his or her life. Leidy’s Church embraces that task!

By the gracious providence of God, our little congregation in southeastern PA is reaching UPGs in Asia and in Africa. None of us will be going to those lands, but our prayers can be used of God to help bring the message of Christ nonetheless. When you pray each day, also ask God to make a way for the gospel among the Erukulu people in India [an UPG in Asia] and to open doors to UPGs in Chad and Niger in Africa. Our financial undergirding is facilitating that outreach, but it will be a fruitless and useless outreach without our prayers for the Holy Spirit to do His calling, revealing, and sanctifying work.

Women’s Ministry: Ladies of Leidy’s

The Ladies of Leidy’s are planning an exciting year for 2021 and we invite all the ladies of our church to join us.

We meet the first Tuesday of every month, weather permitting, at 7 p.m. in Room 123. We are still social distancing in our large classroom. Our first meeting of 2021 is Tuesday, January 5th. Start 2021 off right with our Ladies of Leidy’s Ministry, you will be a blessing to others and receive a blessing.

God Bless you as we serve the Lord together.

Youth Ministry

iBLAST– It’s back and better than ever.  iBLAST will start its spring semester on January 10th. There will be a family meal at 5:15 with iBLAST running from 6:00 to 7:30. If you were registered for the fall, we already have your information. If you still need to sign up, you are able to do so at https://leidyschurch.org/iblast/.

Step In Time – The 2020 Youth Fellowship Lock-In is this coming Tuesday (12/29/20) Night. If you are a youth who would like to come, please let Pastor Michael know immediately. If you have a raging case of insomnia and want to hang out with some awesome teenagers, let Pastor Michael know. Coffee will be provided for volunteers only. As always, rowdy kids will be subject to a mandatory hour of silent prayer at 2:00 a.m.

Youth Retreat – Calling all Youth Fellowship folk. The winter retreat is February 19-21. Come and join us as we spend time looking at the Word, having fun together, learning about the Scripture, eating a lot of good food, seeking to understand God’s revelation, singing praises to the Lord, and studying the Word of God. Please contact Pastor Michael for more information!

Annual Congregation Meeting 2021

The annual Leidy’s Church Congregational Meal & Business meeting is slated for January 16, 2021. We always have a good time enjoying delicious foods and fellowship together as a church family. A time for greeting one another and finding seating in the Fellowship Hall starts at 5:30 pm with the food service beginning at 6:00 pm. I heard from a reliable source that the menu that evening will be: homestyle beef stew, sweet corn, applesauce and dinner rolls with butter. Hot coffee and tea, along with pitchers of cold water will be available. There will be a dessert served after the meal for all of us who think that a meal is not complete without it.

This tasty meal will be prepared by our Kitchen Committee and it certainly will satisfy our palettes, and there will be plenty of food for all to enjoy. To help those planning the meal it is important that we all register by filling out and turning in the forms inserted in the Sunday bulletin. Those forms can be placed in the basket located at the Welcome Center desk.

The Leidy’s Church Annual Report will be thoroughly presented to the congregation both in written form and by thoughtful explanation under the guidance of Mr. Dana Gehman. Dana will explain the ways the Lord provided through the faithful giving of our members and how those funds were expended to support missionaries worldwide, undergird local ministries, and assist benevolent projects during the year of 2020. Then Dana will present the proposed budget for 2021. 

Childcare will be available for the business portion of our meeting that evening through youth volunteers marshalled by Pastor Michael.

Please mark your calendars to plan to attend this special occasion for feasting and fellowship and to perform our financial duties as members of Immanuel Leidy’s Church, one Saturday, January 16,2021.

This article is to be considered the official notification to all members of Immanuel Leidy’s Church of the Annual Congregational Dinner & Business Meeting.

Needs at This Time

The monies given by Leidy’s Church members to In This Time of Need continue to provide substantial help to Venezuelans. Though Venezuelan refugees are no longer in Colombia, Pastor Dagoberto is working to get food, medicine, and the gospel message into Venezuela proper.

Pastor Jésus Ramon lives in Venezuela. Working with Pastor Dagoberto, he is taking much-needed food and supplies to people in need within that country. He also is an outstanding (pun intended!) outside evangelist who is able to preach in the streets, in the country, to groups, or to individuals. In addition to the physical aid brought to folk through Leidy’s Church funding, Pastor Jésus also brings the biblical message of repentance, forgiveness, new life in Christ, and a life of ongoing discipleship.

If you pay attention to the pre-service slides on the sanctuary screens, you will see photos and some videos of this happening right now! What we prayed for three years ago is now taking place. Praise be to God. Please remember Pastor Dagoberto, Pastor Jésus, and the people of Venezuela in your regular prayers. God is at work.

There’s Plenty of Room for You!

In case you have not noticed, the sign-up sheet for the March for Life that is scheduled for Friday, January 29, 2021 is no where near full. Leidy’s Church is sponsoring a coach, from Perkiomen Tours, to take people from the church parking lot down to the nation’s capital in Washington, D.C.

Though we are seeing the cost of fuel going up, the cost per person for this trip is still $12.00. The Church and Community Committee helps with additional costs with a generous donation in support of the trip.  The only other costs each person has is when we stop for breakfast on the way down, a snack or light lunch before the march, and when we stop on our return for dinner.

We leave the church parking lot at 6:00 am and we arrive back around 8:00 pm. We reach our drop off destination at Union Station to jump on to the MetroRail by 9:30 to 10:00 am and then return via the MetroRail to Union Station by 4:00 pm to reload the coach and start home. 

With the rally for the March for Life not starting until noon and the actual march at 1:30, there is plenty of time to visit some of the museums, monuments and other attractions before joining the Rally at the Mall.

You can already see that this trip will be a full day for everyone to learn about this great nation and enjoy its history; but also it will be a day people from across our nation will stand together to give a powerful voice for the unborn as we stand against abortion.

The sign-up for March for Life is posted on the narthex wall. Those under the age of 18 will need to identify a responsible adult they will be with throughout the trip.    

Night to Shine 2021

Last year Leidy’s Church hosted the Night to Shine event with close to 200 guests with the help of over 300 volunteers. This year, it will be a virtual experience, and we are excited to serve and celebrate as many people with special needs as possible.

To ensure our guests can celebrate the virtual event in style, we will be hosting an “in person” event called Shine Thru, held on Friday, January 22nd and Saturday, January 23rd. Shine Thru is an opportunity for parents/caregivers to bring their king/queen to a DRIVE THRU event to be celebrated and receive their guest experience kit. We are planning some special stops along the drive thru route for guests to enjoy, including music from our DJ, a drive down the red carpet through the cheering team, and photos from the paparazzi. ALL guests and parents/caregivers will remain in their vehicles to ensure the health and wellbeing of all involved.

We will need many volunteers for the Shine Thru event, and are asking volunteers to sign up for one hour time slots, as most activities will be outdoors.  Volunteers will need to adhere to necessary safety protocols.

To sign up as a guest or volunteer or for more information, go to the website: BucksMont.nighttoshine.com.  If you are unable to sign up on-line, please contact the church office at 215-723-8707.

Consistory Notes

  • On Wednesday, December 9th, the Consistory of Immanuel Leidy’s Church met at 7:31 pm, and minutes were taken of the meeting, from which relevant notes are listed below.
  • Shaun Permar led devotions and gave testimony about the work of God in his life which continues transforming him as a believer. Shaun expressed how he puts his trust in God and His plan for his life and how he desires to serve Him in accord with His will. Shaun cited Romans 8:28 and Proverbs 3:5-6 as prooftexts that we can trust God’s plan is perfect. Shaun shared his personal faith journey and how God sought him, led Him to Himself and to His service. Shaun asked all of us to pray for the unchurched, for God to open their hearts and lead them to saving faith in Jesus Christ.
  • Minutes from the November 4th meeting were reviewed and approved. The financial report was also reviewed, and it was underscored how November’s giving was the highest of the year. Financial items of disbursement were discussed, which included the HUB window replacement, and the replacement of shrubs at the parsonage property from a payment from the insurance company.
  • Wicking and steeple report were presented with news that a new coat of waterproofing material was being applied to the test areas around the exterior walls of the church building. Concern was raised about the effectiveness of the bond to the test area surfaces. Photos taken of the areas in question, by Jon Swartley of Penn Builders, were presented to Consistory visually confirmed imperfections in the new waterproofing applications. Penn Builders recommended that another coat be applied to the test areas and then re-inspected.
  • The contract was signed for the removal of the old oil tank and the installation of a new oil tank at the HUB property. The HUB assessment committee reported that a real estate agent was consulted about possibly selling the property to our current tenant for a price they could afford. A sub-division of the Mission House from the HUB property was discussed. The committee will consider the option and bring recommendation at our next meeting.
  • The 2021 proposed budget was presented with just over 1% increase in the mission series and a 2% proposed increase for the church staff, with Christian education and conference budgetary increases of 18.37%. Also, the renovation fund increases for oil tank and roof replacements at the HUB. The overall property budget increase will be 2.69%. The overall 2021 budget being proposed for congregational approval is a .28% increase when compared to the 2020 budget.

 Pastors reports and committee reports were submitted along with pertinent church events in December and the coming new year. Shaun Permar led a time of intercessory pray for spoken concerns and our meeting was adjourned with praying the Lord’s prayer at 10:04 pm.

January Ushers

  • Usher Captain Coordinator: Joe Sciacca
  • Usher Captains: Ken Merritt, Nathan Kulp
  • Ushers: Phil Shafer, James Mylin, Doug Guest, Mike Kehs, John Vasey, Dave Freed, Brett Keeble, Larry Frederick, Dave Guntz, Anthony Sciacca, John Caserta, Ken Murphy, Isaac Inyang, Tony Kapusta, Aaron Vogelzang

The New City Catechism – Question 4: How and why did God create us?

God created us male and female in his own image to know him, love him, live with him, and glorify him. And it is right that we who were created by God should live to his glory.

Genesis 1:27 – So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.

Commentary – J. C. Ryle

The glory of God is the first thing that God’s children should desire. It is the object of one of our Lord’s own prayers: “Father, glorify thy name” (John 12:28). It is the purpose for which the world was created. It is the end for which the saints are called and converted. It is the chief thing we should seek, that “God in all things may be glorified” (1 Peter. 4:11) . . .

Anything whereby we may glorify God is a talent, our gifts, our influence, our money, our knowledge, our health, our strength, our time, our senses, our reason, our intellect, our memory, our affections, our privileges as members of Christ’s Church, our advantages as possessors of the Bible—all, all are talents. Whence came these things? What hand bestowed them? Why are we what we are? Why are we not the worms that crawl on the earth? There is only one answer to these questions. All that we have is a loan from God. We are God’s stewards. We are God’s debtors. Let this thought sink deeply into our hearts.

John Piper

Why do people make images? People make images to image. They want to image forth something. If you make a statue of Napoleon, you want people to think not such much about the statue as Napoleon. And you make the statue in a way that shows something specific about the character of Napoleon.

So God makes us in his image. We could argue about whether it is our rationality, or our morality, or our volition that makes us in his image. The point is, he makes humans in his image to image something, namely, himself. So our existence is about showing God’s existence, or, specifically, it’s about showing God’s glory. Which I think means God’s manifold perfections—the radiance, the display, the streaming out of his many-colored, beautiful perfections. We want to think and live and act and speak in such a way that we draw attention to the manifold perfections of God. And I think the way we do that best is by being totally satisfied in those perfections ourselves. They mean more to us than money and more to us than fame and more to us than sex or anything else that might compete for our affections. And when people see us valuing God that much and his glory being that satisfying, they see that he is our treasure. Show me more! I think that’s what it means to glorify God by being in his image.

And the place where the glory is shown most clearly is the gospel where Christ dies; the Son of God dies for sinners. I say that because in 2 Corinthians 4:4 it says, “The god of this world,” that’s Satan, “has blinded the minds of unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.” Do you want to know where the glory of God is shining most brightly? It is shining in Christ in the gospel most brightly. So if we want to be conformed fully into his image and display to others his glory, there’s a verse just before that that says “beholding the glory of the Lord, [we] are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another? (2 Cor. 3:18). And that comes from the Spirit.

So we look at Jesus, we treasure him, we love him, and in that we are being shaped into his image.

When God says he made us male and female to do this, not only does that mean we want generations to go on doing this, so there’s going to be procreation here, but it means this happens best in community. It’s not good for the man to be alone. Who’s he going to glorify God to? So this little community that’s created in the beginning called male and female is representative of the community where the glory of God radiates back and forth to each other and then out to the world.

Let’s do this together. Let’s help each other glorify God.