Wait on the LORD: be of good courage,
and he shall strengthen thine heart;
wait, I say, on the LORD.
- Psalm 27:14
Sermon Podcast No current service | Search sermon archives:


Doctrinal Statement

Vision Statement

Church History

Sermon Archives


> Pastor's Blog

Members Page

Church Calendar

Prayer Concerns

Resources and Links

Contact Us

What's this?

Pastor's Blog

John the Voice 12.17.2017
Dear friend,

May the anticipated and expectant hope of the soon coming of the celebration of God coming in the flesh (Christmas) cause our hearts to warm in thankfulness and quiet peace.

Today is the Third Sunday in Advent and our scripture of meditation is from the fourth Gospel, the Gospel of John the Apostle. It is about John the Baptist and his responses to those who were asking to identify himself in light of his revolutionary ways. We will read from John 1:6-8 and from 1:19-28.

John 1:6 There was a man sent from God, whose name was John.
7 The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.
8 He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light.

Just look at those sentences, for it says it very clearly. Our God sent this man John to be a testifier of the Truth so that all would believe for their soul‚€™s salvation. But John makes it clear that John the Baptist was not that Light, but he was sent to testify of Christ, the Light of the World.

Verses 9-18 continue to outline the entire Gospel of John, as verses 1-18 are called the prologue, or in other words, the outline of the entire Gospel. We now return to the testimony of John the Baptist in verse 19
John the Baptist was causing quite a commotion, many were going to where he was at the Jordan River where he was baptizing there. Here is what Matthew wrote about it.

Matthew 3:1 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea,
2 And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
3 For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
4 And the same John had his raiment of camel's hair, and a leathern girdle about his loins; and his meat was locusts and wild honey.
5 Then went out to him Jerusalem, and all Judaea, and all the region round about Jordan,
6 And were baptized of him in Jordan, confessing their sins.

With the lines long, naturally in the Jewish temples of hierarchy, the leaders wanted to know on what authority was John baptizing all who came to him. They sent messengers to inquire of John.

He emphatically stated: I am NOT the Christ.

19 And this is the record of John, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou?
20 And he confessed, and denied not; but confessed, I am not the Christ.

He said, I am not Elijah, and I am not that prophet.

21 And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No.

Why did they ask if he was Elijah? Because of the prophecies of the Old Testament.

Malachi 4:5 Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the LORD:

And we recall the prophecy of Zechariah, the father of John the Baptist concerning his son.

Luke 1:16 And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.
17 And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.

They then asked, are you that prophet, which was pointed at in a prophecy in Deuteronomy.

KJV Deuteronomy 18:18 I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him.

Perhaps in consternation thinking that they might have to return to their leaders without an answer, they ask the question, Who are you? What do you say for yourself?

22 Then said they unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself?
23 He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said the prophet Esaias.

Up to this time, John identifying himself by telling them who he was not. I am not the Christ, I am not Elijah (he was in the spirit and power of Elijah) and he was not that prophet. (Moses)

In response to their insistent question, John the Baptist replies,

I am a Voice crying in the wilderness calling upon all to come to Jesus for the forgiveness of their sins through repentance and confession. In other words, he is inviting them to come to that place that they recognize that nothing will save them but the Saviour, Jesus the Christ.

24 And they which were sent were of the Pharisees.
25 And they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptizest thou then, if thou be not that Christ, nor Elias, neither that prophet?
26 John answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth one among you, whom ye know not;

He was asked as to why he was baptizing if he had no authority or credentials. He simply said that he is baptizing with water, but then pointed to the One who they did not yet know. In this account in John‚€™s Gospel, very little is said about baptism by John the Baptist, as he pointed to Jesus the Saviour.

27 He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me, whose shoe's latchet I am not worthy to unloose.

John the Baptist then demonstrated his humility by elevating Christ and decreasing himself.

28 These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan, where John was baptizing.
29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.

So summing this up, we see that John the Baptist clearly understood who he was not, that he was a voice which pointed people to Jesus for salvation. He was humble and perhaps one verse in the Gospel of John would typify the attitude of his heart.

KJV John 3:30 He (Christ) must increase, but I must decrease.

As I did some research on the paintings of John the Baptist, I found a number of paintings by famous artists from year gone by. The most famous seems to be one with John the Baptist pointing up, which seems to go right along with his understanding that he was a voice which pointed not to himself, but to Christ.

What are your thoughts as you meditate upon this part that John played in the account of the person and the work of Jesus the Christ? I would love if you would share your thoughts with me through return email.

John knew who he was not.
John lived in humility of self.
John recognized that he was a voice with a message.
John pointed to Christ alone as the One who takes away our sin.

May the Spirit graciously work in our hearts to bring us to repentance when needed, may He help us to look away from self and to Christ alone, and may He help us to point others to Christ and to Him alone.

In Christ alone,

Pastor Orval Wirkkala

Posted on 17 Dec 2017 by Pastor Orval Wirkkala
Help is on the way Isaiah 40.1.11
Dear friend,

May the quietness of the Advent season be with you in these days which are leading us to the celebration of Christmas, the time when God came down to us, when He came for us and Who now lives in us! Oh the wonder of it all and the mystery of it all!

I know just where you are, help is on the way! Those were the words that a family heard the 911 operator say when they put out a call on their cell phone as they lay upside down in a car that had slid off of the icy road and into a water filled ditch. It would be difficult to imagine how wonderful those words sounded to them in their fearful circumstances. Yes, expectant hope must have arose in their hearts as they watched the waters slowly seep into their prison. The four minutes that it took a deputy to get there and to rescue them must have been a very long four minutes.

I know just where you are. Help is on the way!!

Similar words of comfort and of promise were heard by the people of God of years past who were living in exile where they had been sent in judgment for their disobedience and sin. We who live around 2700 years later certainly cannot relate to their experience on a national basis, but we can relate on a more personal basis as there are parallels between that which they experienced then and that which we experience in our personal lives today.

How their hearts must have rung with joy and gladness upon hearing the Voice speak kindly unto them the words of comfort. (Isaiah 40:1-2) After many years of being away from their homeland, they heard the gospel message of comfort and joy as they returned home.

Help was on the way!!

Isaiah by the Spirit was able to see into the future and prophecy of the coming of John the Baptist who would smooth the way for all to come unto the Promised One, the Messiah. (40:3-8) The message was so impactful that those who were bringing these glad tidings were told to get up into the high mountain, to lift up their voice with strength, to lift it up, to not be afraid, and to say unto the cities of Judah:

Behold your God! (40:9)

John the Baptist would later cry Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world! To those living yet in bondage to unbelief and sin, the Voice cries today: Help is on the way! In fact, help has already come! He is ready to receive any and all for their souls salvation.

40:10 Behold, the Lord GOD will come with strong hand, and his arm shall rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him.
11 He shall feed his flock like a shepherd: he shall gather the lambs with his arm, and carry them in his bosom, and shall gently lead those that are with young.

In these two verses we are brought face to face with the strength of the Lord, in that He demonstrated His greatest strength by humbling Himself before all mankind, through the death of the cross. This is how the Apostle Paul described the strength of God in his letter to the Philippian church.

Philippians 2:5 Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,
6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,
7 but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form,
8 he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross.
9 Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name,
10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

And one of our songs of praise that we will sing together today puts this strength of God in to music.

Joy Has Dawned

Joy has dawned upon the world Promised from creation
God‚€™s salvation now unfurled Hope for every nation
Not with fanfares from above Not with scenes of glory
But a humble gift of love Jesus born of Mary

Sounds of wonder fill the sky With the songs of angels
As the mighty Prince of Life Shelters in a stable
Hands that set each star in place Shaped the earth in darkness
Cling now to a mother‚€™s breast Vulnerable and helpless.

Shepherds bow before the Lamb Gazing at the glory
Gifts of men from distant lands Prophesy the story
Gold a King is born today Incense God is with us
Myrrh His death will make a way And by His blood He‚€™ll win for us.

Son of Adam Son of heaven Gives as a ransom
Reconciling God and man Christ our mighty Champion!
What a Saviour What a Friend What a glorious mystery
Once a babe in Bethlehem Now the Lord of history.

How I pray that in the quietness of our souls that we will hear the Voice of our God speaking comfortably into our hearts from His heart of love and grace. He speaks comfort and kindness into our often troubled minds and hearts, so that we would shout to all around us. Behold your God!!! Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!!

Blessed Advent preparations!

Pastor Orval Wirkkala

Posted on 10 Dec 2017 by Pastor Orval Wirkkala

<< Previous 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99 100 101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 109 110 111 112 113 114 115 116 117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 126 127 128 129 130 131 132 133 134 135 136 137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147 148 149 150 151 152 153 154 155 156 157 158 159 160 161 162 163 164 165 166 167 168 169 170 171 172 173 174 175 176 177 178 179 180 181 182 183 184 185 186 187 188 189 190 191 192 193 194 195 196 197 198 199 200 201 202 203 204 205 206 207 208 209 210 211 212 213 214 Next >>

Blog archives...

Deprecated: Function eregi() is deprecated in /home/cws_user/kingstonalc.com/cutenews/show_news.php on line 41

Deprecated: Function eregi() is deprecated in /home/cws_user/kingstonalc.com/cutenews/inc/shows.inc.php on line 63

Deprecated: Function eregi() is deprecated in /home/cws_user/kingstonalc.com/cutenews/inc/shows.inc.php on line 63

Deprecated: Function eregi() is deprecated in /home/cws_user/kingstonalc.com/cutenews/inc/shows.inc.php on line 63

John the Voice 12.17.2017
- Posted by Pastor Orval Wirkkala

Deprecated: mysql_connect(): The mysql extension is deprecated and will be removed in the future: use mysqli or PDO instead in /home/cws_user/kingstonalc.com/library/inc/_cws_functions.php on line 9
2/28 7:00 pm:Lent Service
3/7 7:00 pm:Lent Service
3/14 7:00 pm:Lent Service
3/21 7:00 pm:Lent service
3/23 11:30 a.m.:Senior Luncheon
See Full Calendar...

Deprecated: mysql_connect(): The mysql extension is deprecated and will be removed in the future: use mysqli or PDO instead in /home/cws_user/kingstonalc.com/library/inc/_cws_functions.php on line 9
The Lawry Kilpela family as they grieve but yet rejoice in Lawry's being called home.