Archive for October, 2021

The Fools of Praise

Thursday, October 28th, 2021

The Fools of Praise

Pastor Don Carpenter

Holy Roar: 7 Words That Will Change The Way You Worship

Psalm 149:3 KJV
Let them praise his name in the dance: Let them sing praises unto him with the timbrel and harp.

Pastor Darren Whitehead tells the following story:

Holy Roar: 7 Words That Will Change The Way You Worship BEHIND THE MUSIC
A couple of years ago my wife and I were invited to a Jewish wedding. I’d never been to one before and had no idea what I was getting into. There were differences in the ceremony—that much is true—but the culmination of the wedding was just like any other. There were vows, a kiss, and a pronouncement. There was a new union—husband and wife.
After the ceremony, we made our way to the reception where the real fun and games began. A huge banquet awaited us—a spread of food and drinks as impressive as any I’d ever seen at a wedding. There was grand music and dancing, and everyone shouted and laughed in celebration. And though I was the Gentile of Gentiles in the room (how else would you describe a Christian preacher at a Jewish wedding?), I quickly found that participation in this party was not optional.
I was watching the rowdy festivities when, without warning, two yarmulke-wearing men in their mid-sixties sandwiched me between them. Seconds later, I was swept into a dance with these two strangers, and after a few moments, as if on cue, both men threw their heads back and laughed with such energy that it seemed to come from their very souls. These guys knew how to have fun, but even more importantly, they knew how to draw others into their party. They knew that the cosmic union of souls, the coming together of two people in holy matrimony, was a thing worthy of foolish, near-nonsensical celebration. The celebration was for everyone, Jew and Gentile alike.
The wedding was an amazing experience, and those men personified a word I’d read in the Hebrew text of the Old Testament. It was a word of praise, a word used again and again throughout the book of Psalms—hâlal.
Hâlal is the primary Hebrew word for praise. It’s the word from which we derive the biblical word hallelujah. It’s an exuberant expression of celebration, a word that connotes boasting, raving, or celebrating. It carries with it the notion of acting in a way that is “clamorously foolish.” True hâlal contemplates laying aside your inhibitions and killing your self-consciousness.

Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words To Praise
The Hebrew name for the Book of Psalms is simply the equivalent for the word “praises” and is a bit more appropriate than “Psalms,” which comes from the Greek and has to do with the accompaniment of singing with a stringed instrument of some sort. It is little wonder that the Book of Psalms contains more than half the occurrences of halal in its various forms. Psalms 113–118 are traditionally referred to as the “Hallel Psalms,” because they have to do with praise to God for deliverance from Egyptian bondage under Moses. Because of this, they are an important part of the traditional Passover service. There is no reason to doubt that these were the hymns sung by Jesus and His disciples on Maundy Thursday when He instituted the Lord’s Supper (Matt. 26:30).
The word halal is the source of “Hallelujah,” a Hebrew expression of “praise” to God which has been taken over into virtually every language of mankind. The Hebrew “Hallelujah” is generally translated “Praise the Lord!” The Hebrew term is more technically translated “Let us praise Yah,” the term “Yah” being a shortened form of “Yahweh,” the unique Israelite name for God. The term “Yah” is found in the KJV rendering of Ps. 68:4, reflecting the Hebrew text; however, the Jerusalem Bible (JB) translates it with “Yahweh.”

Holy Roar: 7 Words That Will Change The Way You Worship


It’s an exuberant expression of celebration, a word that connotes boasting, raving, or celebrating.

Holy Roar: 7 Words That Will Change The Way You Worship


In the Old Testament, the word hilul (which comes from the same root word) is used in two places outside the psalms. In both the book of Judges and the book of Leviticus, it is used to describe the way the people might celebrate a harvest festival. There, they’d dance on the grapes, expressing the harvest’s juices for use in wine making. Imagine their enthusiasm as they danced and danced, as the hems of their robes were dyed purple. This dance carries with it the idea of hâlal.

High Energy Praise

Psalm 69:30 KJV
I will praise the name of God with a song, And will magnify him with thanksgiving.

Psalm 22:22 KJV
I will declare thy name unto my brethren: In the midst of the congregation will I praise thee.

Psalm 109:30 KJV
I will greatly praise the LORD with my mouth; Yea, I will praise him among the multitude.

Psalm 18:3 KJV
I will call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised: So shall I be saved from mine enemies.

Psalm 56:10 KJV
In God will I praise his word: In the LORD will I praise his word.

Psalm 84:4 KJV
Blessed are they that dwell in thy house: They will be still praising thee. Selah.

Corporate Celebration

Psalm 149:3 KJV
Let them praise his name in the dance: Let them sing praises unto him with the timbrel and harp.

Holy Roar: 7 Words That Will Change The Way You Worship BEHIND THE MUSIC
Imagine the Hebrew people gathered together. There, tens of thousands of Levites and musicians faced the Israelites, and together, they formed a sort of praise pit. The Levites and musicians played, and as their songs rose, a combustible energy built and built and built until some spark of God ignited the praises of the people. In that moment, the worshippers began to shout, laugh, and dance. They jumped around, hands raised. To the outside observer, they might have appeared drunk or foolish, but they were most sober in their celebration of God; they were incarnating hâlal.

2 Chronicles 5:13 KJV
It came even to pass, as the trumpeters and singers were as one, to make one sound to be heard in praising and thanking the LORD; and when they lifted up their voice with the trumpets and cymbals and instruments of musick, and praised the LORD, saying, For he is good; for his mercy endureth for ever: that then the house was filled with a cloud, even the house of the LORD;

2 Chronicles 20:21 KJV
And when he had consulted with the people, he appointed singers unto the LORD, and that should praise the beauty of holiness, as they went out before the army, and to say, Praise the LORD; for his mercy endureth for ever.

Ezra 3:11 KJV
And they sang together by course in praising and giving thanks unto the LORD; because he is good, for his mercy endureth for ever toward Israel. And all the people shouted with a great shout, when they praised the LORD, because the foundation of the house of the LORD was laid.

Psalm 35:18 KJV
I will give thee thanks in the great congregation: I will praise thee among much people.

Triumphant Conclusion of Psalms

Psalm 150:6 KJV
Let every thing that hath breath praise the LORD. Praise ye the LORD.

Holy Roar: 7 Words That Will Change The Way You Worship BEHIND THE MUSIC
The God of the universe made us to praise him with abandon, like foolish but fun-loving children. Sometimes I wonder if God looks down on North America, if he sees our dignified, carefully orchestrated worship experiences, and wishes we’d cut loose. I wonder if he wishes we’d celebrate him the way those two Jewish gentlemen celebrated at that wedding I attended. I wonder if he wishes we’d join the party, that we’d step out onto his great dance floor and risk being undignified.

At this point some may wonder… is Pastor Carpenter turning Pentecostal or Charismatic? ABSOLUTELY NOT! I have always rejected the teaching of tongues, continued prophetic revelation, or prosperity gospel. I believe that the Bible still teaches that things must be done decently and in order.

1 Corinthians 14:40 KJV
Let all things be done decently and in order.

But the same Bible that gives us this warning, also gives us this direction.

John 4:24 KJV
God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

We learned this morning that Praise involves shooting up one’s hands. Tonight we see that praise can be loud and celebratory from time to time. This is not Charismatic, it is Bible. So, if the Holy Ghost stirs you to shout Hallelujah! It’s okay. If you feel an AMEN coming on… let it go. If you are overwhelmed and your hand shoots into the air, I believe you are in good company because the unseen angels that have been with us have been doing that with us all along.

Jesus our Savior is worthy of passionate praise! Hallelujah!

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 6:36 PM October 28, 2021.

Don’t Miss Bible Answers Tuesday Nights @ 9:00

Tuesday, October 26th, 2021

Hey Torrington ! Do you have a Bible question you would like to ask, but don’t know who you could ask that would not judge you or thunder down an avalanche of opinion, bluff and bluster? Join us every Tuesday night at 9:00 Eastern for Bible Answers on FB Live. We answer your Bible questions and discuss topics that you want to talk about. Please pass this on to your friends! What do you want to talk about ?facebook.com/BibleAnswersCT

The Lukewarm Church

Thursday, October 21st, 2021

The Lukewarm Church

Pastor Don Carpenter

The Jesus Letters / Revelation 3:14–22

PASTORAL SEARCH COMMITTEE OF THE FIRST LUKEWARM CHURCH

I was recently contacted by a pulpit committee that was interested in my ministry. I met with Chairman of the Disenchanted, Bro Tepid. He described his church; First Lukewarm Church of the Apathetic. “Nothing too boring, nothing too exciting. We want it to fit into our American Culture Christianity. No songs too slow, no songs too fast. Nothing from the ancient songs and nothing after the 70’s.” Nothing ever challenging. We want encouragement and comfort.”

He sang to me the Churches Theme Song.

“Sitting on the premises of Christ our friend.

Through eternal ages let the service end.

Glutted to the highest we will moan and sing.

Sitting on the premises and dead.

Sitting on the premises, sitting on the premises,

Sitting on the premises of Christ our servant.

Sitting on the premises, sitting on the premises,

We’re sitting on the premises and dead.”

He proudly described the Church as irresolute and uncommitted. He introduced to me the other committee members; Bobby Bored, Connie Cool. He described the great teachings the women received who participated in the Church’s The Women’s Indifference Society. There seemed to be great growth in one class; The Mellow Sunday School Class. They were excited about an upcoming event; The Men’s Worldly and Wise Conference. An upcoming revival was going to be led by The Reverend Marvin Mundane. The church had started the Spiritless Seniors group who were going to focus on traveling to entertainment locations like Branson Missouri and Las Vegas. This would bring the Church back into balance because of the growing the Unresponsive Youth Program.

They were looking for a pastor who could scratch their ears, stir their emotions, help their self-esteem, complement their current spiritual condition and validate their unchanging ministries and priorities. On the bright side, they were going to pay well and the benefits were killer.

In this last of the Jesus letters, He addresses the church of Laodicea, a church famous for their tepid spirituality. The Author’s credentials deserve a little explanation.

 Revelation 3:14 (KJV)

 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;

The Greek word used here to describe Christ can mean “ruler” or “originator.” Compare John 1:1–5; Col 1:15–18.1

1 John D. Barry et al., Faithlife Study Bible (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2012, 2016)

John 1:1–3 KJV

IN the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 

The same was in the beginning with God. 

All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

Lukewarm Christians Make Jesus Sick

Revelation 3:15–16 KJV

I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. 

So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth.

This imagery may allude to the water system at Laodicea. The city had no water supply of its own; it had cold water piped in from Colossae or hot water piped in from the springs at Hierapolis. When the water arrived in the city, it had become lukewarm. Like the water, the church at Laodicea was neither refreshing (like cold water) nor healing (like hot spring water).1

1 John D. Barry et al., Faithlife Study Bible (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2012, 2016), Re 3:15.

A. This lukewarm state comes from their works

  • Indifferent

  • Neutral

  • Not real aggressive

  • Not against Jesus either

  • Chameleon Christians – seeking to blend in and please everyone

B. Jesus wants you to make a choice, not sit on the fence

“Were you hot [i.e., for bathing] or cold [i.e., for drinking], you would be useful; but as it is, I feel toward you the way you feel toward your water supply—you make me sick.”1

1 Craig S. Keener, The IVP Bible Background Commentary: New Testament (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1993), Re 3:15–16.

C. Jesus cannot stand the taste of a lukewarm Christian

Lukewarm Christians Are Unaware Of Their Condition

Revelation 3:17 KJV

Because thou sayest, I am rich, and increased with goods, and have need of nothing; and knowest not that thou art wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind, and naked:

Laodicea was a prosperous banking center; proud of its wealth, it refused Roman disaster relief after the earthquake of a.d. 60, rebuilding from its own resources. It was also known for its textiles (especially wool) and for its medical school and production of ear medicine and undoubtedly the highly reputed Phrygian eye salve. Everything in which Laodicea could have confidence outwardly, its church, which reflected its culture, lacked spiritually.1

1 Craig S. Keener, The IVP Bible Background Commentary: New Testament (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1993), Re 3:17–18.

1. Wretched = distressed

Romans 7:24–25 KJV

O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death? 

I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.

2. Miserable = pitiable

3. Poor = a beggar

4. Blind = unable to see the truth

5. Naked = shamed in sin like Adam and Eve

Lukewarm Christians must take action

Revelation 3:18–19 KJV

I counsel thee to buy of me gold tried in the fire, that thou mayest be rich; and white raiment, that thou mayest be clothed, and that the shame of thy nakedness do not appear; and anoint thine eyes with eyesalve, that thou mayest see. 

As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten: be zealous therefore, and repent.

A. Buy gold from Jesus – the truth of God’s Word

Psalm 19:7–11 KJV

The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: The testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. 

The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: The commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. 

The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: The judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether. 

More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: Sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb. 

Moreover by them is thy servant warned: And in keeping of them there is great reward.

Psalm 119:9–11 KJV

BETH. Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? By taking heed thereto according to thy word. 

With my whole heart have I sought thee: O let me not wander from thy commandments. 

Thy word have I hid in mine heart, That I might not sin against thee.

John 17:17 KJV

Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.

B. Buy a white robe = righteousness

Revelation 19:8 KJV

And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.

C. Anoint your eyes = spiritual discernment

1 Corinthians 2:14 KJV

But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

The Laodicean medical school was known for producing eye salve. Christ prescribes His salve as the cure for spiritual blindness.1

1 John D. Barry et al., Faithlife Study Bible (Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press, 2012, 2016), Re 3:18.

D. Open The Door!

Revelation 3:20–22 KJV

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me. 

To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne. 

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

Table fellowship was a sign of intimacy and committed the guest and host to friendly relations. Jesus here invites the Laodicean Christians to dine (cf. Rev 2:7; contrast 2:14, 20) in the present at the messianic banquet (see comment on 19:9); it is an invitation to a genuinely lavish banquet, implying again their spiritual poverty (cf. 3:17–18). But the door to fellowship is presently closed—from their side (contrast 3:7–8).1

1 Craig S. Keener, The IVP Bible Background Commentary: New Testament (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press,

Despite their self-sufficiency, and despite their self-deception and despite their lukewarmness, Jesus is patiently knocking on the door of the Laodicean church anyway–knocking on a door of people who made Him sick! Isn’t that amazing?

I remember a lady in our church in Durham, NC who had trusted Christ and wanted me to tell the Gospel to her son and daughter-in-law. She made the mistake of telling them I was coming and when. I knocked on the door several times, but no one would come to the door. I could hear a TV on in the living room and a radio on in another room. At first I heard talking, but the more I knocked, I noticed it got quieter, and I could hear people whispering…so I knew they knew I was there. So I just kept knocking louder until finally they opened the door. I was able to share the Gospel with them and the daughter-in-law trusted in Christ in her home and he came to Christ as few weeks later at church.

I think that’s the picture you have in this passage—a picture of RESOLUTION. You may feel you don’t need the Lord, but Jesus knows you do, and He seeks communion with you and me, despite our waywardness and sinfulness

And if just that fact alone doesn’t set you on fire for Jesus, I don’t know what will!

Are you a lukewarm, tepid, middle of the road Christian. Jesus loves you but is disappointed with what you have become. He is knocking at the door, not for salvation, but for inclusion and for intimacy. If you have trusted Him as Savior, the you have removed the barrier of sin. He now wants you to be all in. He is knocking, will you let Him in?

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 4:34 PM October 21, 2021.

Kid’s Bible Club Friday @ 6:00 PM

Thursday, October 21st, 2021

Kids ages 4-11 are invited to sing, shout, play games, do crafts, and hear exciting Bible stories Friday nights this fall. Parents can drop your children off a little before 6 and pick them up at 8. For more information call 860-496-8022. 

Tonight (Wednesday) @ 7:00

Wednesday, October 20th, 2021

What would you do differently if you knew that Jesus was going to show up in person in church tonight? Join us tonight for a soul stirring message: Jesus is in the House!

Jesus Is In The House!

Tuesday, October 19th, 2021

Jesus Is In The House!

Pastor Don Carpenter

2021 Bible Reading Challenge

In his book, Building a Contagious Church, Mark Mittleberg asks us to join him in downtown Grand Rapids, Michigan. As you walk up to the large arena, you see a mass of young people in line for a concert. The headline act is shock-rockeer Marilyn Manson (named after Marilyn Monroe and mass murderer Charles Manson and bills himself as the “Anti-Christ Superstar”). The crowd is noisy and energetic, ready to see a show that most, if not all of us would not even consider attending, to say the least.

As you get closer, you notice a group of people engaging the concertgoers in lively discussion. The protesters are Christians with signs expressing their disapproval of Marilyn Manson and all those who would attend the concert. These zealous protesters are yelling at the crowd, and the Manson fans are shouting back with equal intensity. Though no physical blows are exchanged across the battle lines, a steady barrage of verbal missiles and assaults are launched back and forth. Obviously there is a significant disconnect between the two groups.

Soon another group of Christians enter the mix. It’s a band of 19-29 year olds from a ministry called “the gro-ups”, sponsored by Corinth Reformed Church in Byron Center, Michigan. They unload bags of ice, coolers, and cases of Mountain Dew. They walk up to the pulsating crowd of anxious rockers and begin giving away soft drinks. No signs condemning anyone, no strings attached—just free drinks, a smile and a sincere, “Have a good evening.”

Some of the people going to the concert simply accepted the free drink and moved on. Others say thank you and asked “Why are you doing this?”

The answer was simple with not shame or guilt attached, “We love God and we love you!”

Some snickered and walked away. Others lingered and talked a bit. One young man begins to interact more deeply and even decides to throw away his ticket and help the members of “gro-ups” hand out more drinks! Out of this simple act of service, lives were touched and the love of Jesus was communicated to people who might have no other positive contact with Christians. There was an obvious connection between the two groups.

___

There are all kinds of ideas of what it means to stand up for Jesus. I know of quite a few folks in the “turn or burn” crowd. These folks hand out tracts to Catholics about the eucharist being a “Cookie God”. When most folks turn and shun them, they congratulate themselves for standing for the truth.

In passage tonight we find a powerful spiritual encounter with the Savior. There was a huge crowd, God’s power was on display, sins were forgiven, false doctrine was exposed and God was worshipped. What drew these folks? How was the city prepared? It was simple, word spread that Jesus was in the House!

Think about that for a minute. What if when you came into church tonight, you saw Jesus sitting a few pews back, chatting with the folks who came in early? What would you do differently? Would you sing differently? Would you pray differently? Would you still pass notes and joke with those near you in the pew during worship? Would you tell anyone about our little prayer meeting? What if Jesus, on the way out told us He would see us Sunday morning? Would you do anything different leading up to church? Would you pack the place out because Jesus was in the house? Would you make sure you got to bed Saturday night and got everyone up on time because Jesus was going to show up? Would you make sure your sins were confessed and your soul was ready for whatever spiritual thing God was going to do because Jesus was going to be in the house? Oh if I knew Jesus was going to show up in person things would be way different…. ummmm

Matthew 18:20 KJV

For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

Tonight we are going to look at what can happen when we take God at His word and really believe that Jesus is in the house. This is what we must do with the fact that Jesus is in the house.

Noise It

Mark 2:1 KJV

And again he entered into Capernaum, after some days; and it was noised that he was in the house.

Mark 1:43–45 KJV

And he straitly charged him, and forthwith sent him away; 

And saith unto him, See thou say nothing to any man: but go thy way, shew thyself to the priest, and offer for thy cleansing those things which Moses commanded, for a testimony unto them. 

But he went out, and began to publish it much, and to blaze abroad the matter, insomuch that Jesus could no more openly enter into the city, but was without in desert places: and they came to him from every quarter.

John 9:25 KJV

He answered and said, Whether he be a sinner or no, I know not: one thing I know, that, whereas I was blind, now I see.

Attend It

 Mark 2:2 (KJV)

 And straightway many were gathered together, insomuch that there was no room to receive them, no, not so much as about the door: and he preached the word unto them.

Hebrews 10:25 KJV

Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.

Hear It

 Mark 2:2 (KJV)

 And straightway many were gathered together, insomuch that there was no room to receive them, no, not so much as about the door: and he preached the word unto them.

Matthew 5:2 KJV

And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,

Luke 8:1 KJV

And it came to pass afterward, that he went throughout every city and village, preaching and shewing the glad tidings of the kingdom of God: and the twelve were with him,

1 Corinthians 1:18 KJV

For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.

Romans 10:17 KJV

So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

Uncover It

Mark 2:3–4 KJV

And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four. 

And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay.

 • Don’t let anything get in your way.

 • We will do what it takes to show up when we really believe that Jesus is in the house!

 • We will not let personal preferences, or differences of opinion keep us away if we really believe that Jesus is in the house!

Believe It!

 Mark 2:5 (KJV)

 When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.

 • Belief accesses Grace for forgiveness

 • Belief accesses Grace for healing

Witness It!

Mark 2:6–10 KJV

But there were certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their hearts, 

Why doth this man thus speak blasphemies? who can forgive sins but God only? 

And immediately when Jesus perceived in his spirit that they so reasoned within themselves, he said unto them, Why reason ye these things in your hearts? 

Whether is it easier to say to the sick of the palsy, Thy sins be forgiven thee; or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk? 

But that ye may know that the Son of man hath power on earth to forgive sins, (he saith to the sick of the palsy,)

 • Skepticism melts when exposed to the manifested presence of Jesus!

 • Not sure if its true? COME AND SEE…. JESUS IS IN THE HOUSE

Experience It

Mark 2:11–12 KJV

I say unto thee, Arise, and take up thy bed, and go thy way into thine house. 

And immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch that they were all amazed, and glorified God, saying, We never saw it on this fashion.

 • Experience Deliverance

 • Experience Forgiveness

 • Experience Healing

 • Experience Life Changing Power

Be Amazed By It!

 Mark 2:12 (KJV)

 And immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch that they were all amazed, and glorified God, saying, We never saw it on this fashion.

Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament

???????? ????????: cause someone to be so astounded as to be practically overwhelmed

Become so absolutely overwhelmed by the manifest presence of Jesus Christ, you cannot help but burst forth in praise and worship.

John 4:24 KJV

God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

My dear friends, if our eyes of faith would be enlightened a bit, the power of God would be unleashed in a way we have not seen! Jesus promised it.

Matthew 18:20 KJV

For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

So since Jesus is in the house: Let us 

 • Noise it!

 • Attend it!

 • Hear it!

 • Uncover it!

 • Believe it!

 • Witness it!

 • Experience it!

 • And Be Amazed By It – driven to passionate worship!

After All…. Jesus is in the House!

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 7:22 PM October 19, 2021.

Bible Answers Tuesday Nights on Facebook

Tuesday, October 19th, 2021

Hey Torrington ! Do you have a Bible question you would like to ask, but don’t know who you could ask? Join me every Tuesday night at 9:00 Eastern for Bible Answers on FB Live. We answer your Bible questions and discuss topics that are on YOUR heart. Please pass this on to your friends! What do you want to talk about ? facebook.com/BibleAnswersCT

Today is the Day!

Sunday, October 17th, 2021

We prepare all week to meet you Sunday! The music is ready, the message is ready, our people are ready, all we need now is to meet you. Sunday School for all ages @ 9:45 and our Morning Worship is at 11. Are you ready for an exciting Sunday morning?

If God Be For Us

Saturday, October 16th, 2021

If God Be For Us

Pastor Don Carpenter

The Gospel On Tour / Acts 18:1–17

During World War II, a passenger ship set sail from Great Britian headed for port in New York City. The Captain of the ship being afraid of enemy vessels, sought the advice and guidance of the British Admiral. The Admiral calmly assured the captain that no matter what happens, he should be sure to sail his ship straight ahead. “Do not take any detours — sail the ship straight ahead — continue on-ward, heading straight towards the intended mark,” he said.

After several days of sailing across the Atlantic Ocean which was undeniably filled with submarines and enemy vessels of all kinds, the Captain spotted an enemy destroyer off his forward bow. Nervously he grasped the handset and called for assistance. The calm voice replied, “Keep on straight, do not detour, just sail the ship straight ahead. Everything will be just fine. Just keep on going – straight ahead.”

After a couple more days the ship pulled safely into the great harbor of New York City. Shortly after docking the great British battleship “Man-of-War” pulled into port behind the passenger vessel. The Captain realized that while he did not see the British Battleship, she was there, standing by ready to come to his defense should it prove necessary.

As we continue our series “The Gospel on Tour” we find ourselves in Corinth. Again Paul and company facing one opposition after another, just to see one deliverance after another. We are left but one conclusion… it is the same one that made it into Paul’s anthem of praise in Romans 8.

Romans 8:31 KJV

What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?

When Facing a Hostile Crowd

Acts 18:1–6 KJV

After these things Paul departed from Athens, and came to Corinth; 

And found a certain Jew named Aquila, born in Pontus, lately come from Italy, with his wife Priscilla; (because that Claudius had commanded all Jews to depart from Rome:) and came unto them. 

And because he was of the same craft, he abode with them, and wrought: for by their occupation they were tentmakers. 

And he reasoned in the synagogue every sabbath, and persuaded the Jews and the Greeks. 

And when Silas and Timotheus were come from Macedonia, Paul was pressed in the spirit, and testified to the Jews that Jesus was Christ. 

And when they opposed themselves, and blasphemed, he shook his raiment, and said unto them, Your blood be upon your own heads; I am clean: from henceforth I will go unto the Gentiles.

1. Not many synagogues in the region.

2. Stayed with Aquila and Priscilla.

3. Persuaded the Jews and the Greeks.

4. Testified that Jesus was the Christ.

5. His audience opposed themselves.

2 Timothy 2:24–26 KJV

And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, 

In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; 

And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.

6. Paul moved on to the Gentiles.

When Given an Open Door

Acts 18:7–11 KJV

And he departed thence, and entered into a certain man’s house, named Justus, one that worshipped God, whose house joined hard to the synagogue. 

And Crispus, the chief ruler of the synagogue, believed on the Lord with all his house; and many of the Corinthians hearing believed, and were baptized. 

Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace: 

For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee: for I have much people in this city. 

And he continued there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.

1. Justus’ family was very involved with the synagogue. They probably did not approve of Paul reaching out to the Gentiles.

2. Crispus, the synagogue chief, got saved, along with his family.

3. Many Corinthian people were saved.

4. Paul was told not to fear. God had many people to reach in the city.

5. Paul stayed there 1 ½ years.

When Falsely Accused

Acts 18:12–17 KJV

And when Gallio was the deputy of Achaia, the Jews made insurrection with one accord against Paul, and brought him to the judgment seat, 

Saying, This fellow persuadeth men to worship God contrary to the law. 

And when Paul was now about to open his mouth, Gallio said unto the Jews, If it were a matter of wrong or wicked lewdness, O ye Jews, reason would that I should bear with you: 

But if it be a question of words and names, and of your law, look ye to it; for I will be no judge of such matters. 

And he drave them from the judgment seat. 

Then all the Greeks took Sosthenes, the chief ruler of the synagogue, and beat him before the judgment seat. And Gallio cared for none of those things.

1. The Jews brought Paul to the judgment seat.

2. Gallio of Achaia refused to hear their complaint.

3. The Greeks took the new ruler of the synagogue and beat him for the embarrassment that he caused.

Keith Hartsell of Wheaton, Illinois, was driving around with a friend of his in California, when he noticed that his friend’s cell phone was locked with an unusual password — pro nobis. Keith asked him what pro nobis meant and why he chose that for a password. Keith’s friend told him it was Latin and it meant “For Us,” and then he suddenly started choking up. Keith thought, “Why would those two Latin words cause so much emotion?”

Then his friend composed himself and explained that after walking through deep personal pain, true healing came when he learned that God is “for us” — or the Latin phrase pro nobis. Keith’s friend said that after his parents’ divorce, he entered a season when he assumed that God didn’t care or that God had given up on him. But he finally found hope through those two simple words — pro nobis (for us). You see, when he decided to believe that God was pro nobis, that God had even sent Christ to die for him, he could then decide to lay down his life for others.

(Keith Hartsell, from a sermon by C. Philip Green, Dungeons and Dreams, 9/8/2011)

So my friend, we have once again seen God at work on the mission field. He has emboldened, protected, enabled, and delivered His servants over and over. The same God who worked on the ancient mission field is at work in your home, your family, and your life today. If fear tries to wrap its tentacles around your heart, ask yourself… If God be for us, who can be against us? 

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 9:05 AM October 16, 2021.

To The Faithful Church

Thursday, October 14th, 2021

To The Faithful Church

Pastor Don Carpenter

The Jesus Letters / Revelation 3:7–13

  Have you ever had a door slammed in your face? I have on occasions, when I’ve gone out witnessing—knocked on the door. So many more occasions I’ve had the door opened, and people have been so gracious to me. But, there have been those times when I’ve had that door go kablam right in my face. And, I just wonder why that doesn’t happen more. You know, we ought to be a little ashamed of ourselves that it doesn’t happen more. You know, those early Christians rejoiced that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His name.

 None of us like to have doors shut in our faces. You don’t like to go to some particular social club and hear people say, “That’s not for you. Stay out.” But, I want to tell you a wonderful truth: that our Lord is the Keeper of the keys. And, there are certain doors that He opens that no man can shut, and there are certain doors that He can shut and no man can open.

1 Adrian Rogers, “The Keeper of the Keys and the Doors of Destiny,” in Adrian Rogers Sermon Archive (Signal Hill, CA: Rogers Family Trust, 2017), Re 3:7–13.

Our Jesus Letter today is to the church at Philadelphia. They were a small church with big opposition. In His letter to them, Jesus comforts them with this truth, He is the door keeper and He is going to open the door of gospel opportunity for them and no one will be able to shut it.

Dear believing friend, are you tired and overwhelmed? Have you been faithful in your little corner of the universe only to feel that it just doesn’t matter? This letter is for you. Jesus has been watching. He sees your faithfulness. When He is ready, He will open wide the door and all you need to do is walk through it. Let us learn from Jesus’ letter to the Faithful Church.

The Author’s Credentials

Revelation 3:7 KJV

And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth;

He is Holy

Isaiah 6:3 KJV

And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: The whole earth is full of his glory.

Isaiah 40:25 KJV

To whom then will ye liken me, or shall I be equal? saith the Holy One.

 He is the one who is holy. Holy is the description of God himself. ‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts’ was the song of the seraphs which Isaiah heard (Isaiah 6:3). ‘To whom then will you compare me, or who is my equal? says the Holy One’ (Isaiah 40:25). ‘I am the Lord, your Holy One, the Creator of Israel, your King’ (Isaiah 43:15). All through the Old Testament, God is the Holy One; and now that title is given to the risen Christ. We must remember that holy (hagios) means different, separate from. God is holy because he is different from us; he has that quality of being which belongs to him alone. To say that Jesus Christ is holy is to say that he shares the being of God.1

1 William Barclay, The Revelation of John, 3rd ed. fully rev. and updated., vol. 1, The New Daily Study Bible (Louisville, KY; London: Westminster John Knox Press, 2004), 139.

He Is True

 He is the one who is true. In Greek, there are two words for true. There is al?th?s, which means true in the sense that a true statement is different from a false statement. There is al?thinos, which means real as opposed to that which is unreal. It is the second of these words which is used here. In Jesus, there is reality. When we are confronted with him, we are confronted with no shadowy outline of the truth but with the truth itself.1

1 William Barclay, The Revelation of John, 3rd ed. fully rev. and updated., vol. 1, The New Daily Study Bible (Louisville, KY; London: Westminster John Knox Press, 2004), 139.

He Has The Key of David

He is the one who has the key of David, who opens and no one will shut, who shuts and no one opens. We may first note that the key is the symbol of authority. Here is the picture of Jesus Christ as the one who has the final authority which no one can question.

Behind this, there is an Old Testament picture. Hezekiah had a faithful steward called Eliakim, who had authority over all his house and who alone could admit to the presence of the king. Isaiah heard God say of this faithful Eliakim: ‘I will place on his shoulder the key of the house of David; he shall open, and no one shall shut; he shall shut, and no one shall open’ (Isaiah 22:22). It is this picture which is in John’s mind. Jesus alone has authority to admit to the new Jerusalem, the new city of David. As the Te Deum has it: ‘Thou didst open the kingdom of Heaven to all believers.’ He is the new and living way into the presence of God.1

1 William Barclay, The Revelation of John, 3rd ed. fully rev. and updated., vol. 1, The New Daily Study Bible (Louisville, KY; London: Westminster John Knox Press, 2004), 139–140.

Matthew 28:18 KJV

And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

He is the Door Keeper

1 Corinthians 16:9 KJV

For a great door and effectual is opened unto me, and there are many adversaries.

2 Corinthians 2:12 KJV

Furthermore, when I came to Troas to preach Christ’s gospel, and a door was opened unto me of the Lord,

Colossians 4:3 KJV

Withal praying also for us, that God would open unto us a door of utterance, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in bonds:

John 10:9 KJV

I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.

The Author’s Critique

Revelation 3:8 KJV

I know thy works: behold, I have set before thee an open door, and no man can shut it: for thou hast a little strength, and hast kept my word, and hast not denied my name.

I Know Your Works

 • That is why I have opened the door for you.

 • I will bless your efforts with opportunity

You Have Little Strength

A little strength (?????? ???????). This would mean, thou hast some power, though small. Many, however, omit the indefinite article in translating, and render thou hast little strength; i.e., thou art poor in numbers and worldly resources. So Alford, Trench, and Düsterdieck.1

1 Marvin Richardson Vincent, Word Studies in the New Testament, vol. 2 (New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1887), 465.

But could they take advantage of it? There were at least two obstacles to overcome, the first being their own lack of strength (Rev. 3:8). Apparently, this was not a large or a strong church; however, it was a faithful one. They were true to God’s Word and unafraid to bear His name. Revelation 3:10 suggests that they had endured some special testing and had proved faithful.

It is not the size or strength of a church that determines its ministry, but faith in the call and command of the Lord. “God’s commandments are God’s enablements.” If Jesus Christ gave them an open door, then He would see to it that they were able to walk through it! Martin Luther put it perfectly in his well-known hymn:

Did we in our own strength confide,

Our striving would be losing.

Were not the right Man on our side,

The Man of God’s own choosing.

1 Warren W. Wiersbe, The Bible Exposition Commentary, vol. 2 (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1996), 578.

You Have Kept My Word

You Have Not Denied My Name

I know thy works … that thou hast a little power. Perhaps the church was of recent foundation, and had not yet obtained great influence in the city. hast kept, hast not denied, R.V. didst keep, didst not deny, i.e. in some recent crisis, perhaps persecution at the hands of the hostile Jews. The key to the reference has been lost; but for Christians of all times, it gives the comforting thought that Christ knows the events in our lives that are unable to impress themselves upon the memory of the world.

1 J. T. Dean, The Book of Revelation, ed. Alexander Whyte and John Kelman, Handbooks for Bible Classes and Private Students (Edinburgh: T&T Clark, 1915), 87.

Author’s Promises

I Will Convert Your Enemies

Revelation 3:9 KJV

Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.

 • Either they will get saved and worship with the other believers – hence the open door to get the gospel out.

 • Or they will eventually bow in Eternity

Philippians 2:9–11 KJV

Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: 

That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 

And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

 • Either way they will know Jesus loved the church at Philadelphia!

I Will Keep You Safe

Revelation 3:10 KJV

Because thou hast kept the word of my patience, I also will keep thee from the hour of temptation, which shall come upon all the world, to try them that dwell upon the earth.

I Will Come Quickly

Revelation 3:11–13 KJV

Behold, I come quickly: hold that fast which thou hast, that no man take thy crown. 

Him that overcometh will I make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name. 

He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.

 • Don’t let go of the victor’s crown or rewards you have already earned

In a very real sense, the church today is like the Philadelphian church, for God has set before us many open doors of opportunity. If He opens the doors, we must work; if He shuts the doors, we must wait. Above all, we must be faithful to Him and see the opportunities, not the obstacles. If we miss our opportunities, we lose our rewards (crowns), and this means being ashamed before Him when He comes (1 John 2:28)1

1 Warren W. Wiersbe, The Bible Exposition Commentary, vol. 2 (Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1996), 579.

 When Andy Griffith, star of the classic television program that bore his name, entered his fifties, he found it increasingly difficult to find work in Hollywood, and his personal finances became tighter and tighter. He wrote in Guideposts that finally he and his wife Cindi decided things would be easier if they moved from Los Angeles back to Andy’s home state of North Carolina; so they put their home up for sale and waited for a buyer. Unfortunately the real estate market was down, and no one gave them a decent offer for their home. Months passed, and Andy grew depressed.

 Then one day the Lord gave Cindi an insight. “Maybe it’s a good thing we couldn’t sell the house,” she said. “Maybe it was God showing us grace. If we moved to North Carolina now, you might indeed never work again. What we need to do is stay here and stoke the fire.”

 And stoke the fire they did. Day after day they went together to the office of the talent agency that represented Andy. They sat in the lobby, chatted with agents, and went with them to lunch. Eventually the work started to come in: four TV movies that year, including the pilot for Matlock, a show that ended up running for nine years.

 Sometimes a closed door is a signpost from God. He has a better way for us to go.

1 Craig Brian Larson, 750 Engaging Illustrations for Preachers, Teachers & Writers (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2002), 121–122.

Friends, EBC is a tiny church that has outlasted many of her critics. We have been faithful to the word, and to the Gospel. I believe that God has given us opportunities right now to reach this town like never before. Let us, like the church at Philadelphia, walk through the door God has opened. Let us reach out online. Let us dig deeper in our personal understanding of God’s love. Let us demonstrate the love of God in our words and in our actions.  Let us be good stewards of every friendship, every moment, every chance to worship, every chance to give testimony. Let us walk through the open door!

Exported from Logos Bible Software, 7:00 PM October 14, 2021.