Wait on the LORD: be of good courage,
and he shall strengthen thine heart;
wait, I say, on the LORD.
- Psalm 27:14
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Speak Lord, for your servant hears. 1/15/2012
Today is the first Sunday after the Epiphany. Epiphany, which traditionally falls on 6 January, is a Christian feast day that celebrates the revelation of God the Son as a human being in Jesus Christ. Western Christians commemorate principally (but not solely) the visitation of the Biblical Magi to the Baby Jesus, and thus Jesus' physical manifestation to the Gentiles.

Our text today is from 1 Samuel 3. We could outline this chapter in the following manner.

God calls Samuel

Samuel answers the Lord's Call

Samuel delivers the Lord's Message

Samuel was young boy when the voice of the Lord began to call unto him while he was yet ministering to the Lord under the man of God, Eli. Samuel answered to the voice with "Here am I" and ran to Eli, but was told by Eli that he had not called Samuel. Again the voice came forth and Samuel again went to Eli, but was told to go lay down for he had not called him. After the third time, Eli perceived that it was the Lord who had called the child and this time gave instruction to Samuel that if he hears the voice again, he should answer by saying, "Speak, Lord, for your servant hears."

The Lord called Samuel the fourth time, Samuel answered with the words, "Speak, Lord, for you servant hears," but that which the Lord told unto Samuel was a very grievious message and fear came upon him as a result. Neverthelss, when he was called upon to speak of that which the Lord had revealed unto him, he did so.

May we through hearing of the Lord's calling of Samuel be given insight and instruction as to how He yet reveals Himself today, calls us to Himself through the voice of His Word and Spirit for the purpose that we would be His mouthpiece in our world today.

Young Samuel grew up in a Jewish home, was the child of his mother who prayed fervently to the Lord, with the promise that given a son, she would give him unto the Lord. (1 Sameul 1:11) The Lord heard her prayer and in time she bore her son, naming him Samuel, because "she had asked for him from the Lord." She fulfilled her vow by bringing her son to the Lord to be trained in the house of the Lord in Shiloh, (place of rest)

The mother of Samuel reveals her understanding of the Lord in her prayer in chapter two of this book. We will place that prayer here, for it is a significant part of the beginnings of the ministry of Samuel, the first prophet after the long line

KJV 1 Samuel 2:1 And Hannah prayed, and said, My heart rejoiceth in the LORD, mine horn is exalted in the LORD: my mouth is enlarged over mine enemies; because I rejoice in thy salvation.
2 There is none holy as the LORD: for there is none beside thee: neither is there any rock like our God.
3 Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let not arrogancy come out of your mouth: for the LORD is a God of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed.
4 The bows of the mighty men are broken, and they that stumbled are girded with strength.
5 They that were full have hired out themselves for bread; and they that were hungry ceased: so that the barren hath born seven; and she that hath many children is waxed feeble.
6 The LORD killeth, and maketh alive: he bringeth down to the grave, and bringeth up.
7 The LORD maketh poor, and maketh rich: he bringeth low, and lifteth up.
8 He raiseth up the poor out of the dust, and lifteth up the beggar from the dunghill, to set them among princes, and to make them inherit the throne of glory: for the pillars of the earth are the LORD'S, and he hath set the world upon them.
9 He will keep the feet of his saints, and the wicked shall be silent in darkness; for by strength shall no man prevail.
10 The adversaries of the LORD shall be broken to pieces; out of heaven shall he thunder upon them: the LORD shall judge the ends of the earth; and he shall give strength unto his king, and exalt the horn of his anointed.

Hannah knew the Lord, she believed in the Lord and she trusted the Lord above everything else. This is the environment that her son was raised in. As he ministered in the house of the Lord, it was in the midst of the evil worship practices of Eli's sons, Hophni and Phineas. We see what the writers says about the contrasting ministries of the two and of Samuel.

" Wherefore the sin of the young men was very great before the LORD: for men abhorred the offering of the LORD.
18 But Samuel ministered before the LORD, being a child, girded with a linen ephod." (2:17-18)

22 Now Eli was very old, and heard all that his sons did unto all Israel; and how they lay with the women that assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
23 And he said unto them, Why do ye such things? for I hear of your evil dealings by all this people.
24 Nay, my sons; for it is no good report that I hear: ye make the LORD'S people to transgress.
25 If one man sin against another, the judge shall judge him: but if a man sin against the LORD, who shall intreat for him? Notwithstanding they hearkened not unto the voice of their father, because the LORD would slay them.
26 And the child Samuel grew on, and was in favour both with the LORD, and also with men.

In the last part of chapter two, the following words are spoken to Eli by an unnamed man of God.

1 Samuel 2:27Thus saith the LORD, Did I plainly appear unto the house of thy father, when they were in Egypt in Pharaoh's house?
28 And did I choose him out of all the tribes of Israel to be my priest, to offer upon mine altar, to burn incense, to wear an ephod before me? and did I give unto the house of thy father all the offerings made by fire of the children of Israel?
29 Wherefore kick ye at my sacrifice and at mine offering, which I have commanded in my habitation; and honourest thy sons above me, to make yourselves fat with the chiefest of all the offerings of Israel my people?
30 Wherefore the LORD God of Israel saith, I said indeed that thy house, and the house of thy father, should walk before me for ever: but now the LORD saith, Be it far from me; for them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed.
31 Behold, the days come, that I will cut off thine arm, and the arm of thy father's house, that there shall not be an old man in thine house.
32 And thou shalt see an enemy in my habitation, in all the wealth which God shall give Israel: and there shall not be an old man in thine house for ever.
33 And the man of thine, whom I shall not cut off from mine altar, shall be to consume thine eyes, and to grieve thine heart: and all the increase of thine house shall die in the flower of their age.
34 And this shall be a sign unto thee, that shall come upon thy two sons, on Hophni and Phinehas; in one day they shall die both of them.
35 And I will raise me up a faithful priest, that shall do according to that which is in mine heart and in my mind: and I will build him a sure house; and he shall walk before mine anointed for ever.
36 And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left in thine house shall come and crouch to him for a piece of silver and a morsel of bread, and shall say, Put me, I pray thee, into one of the priests' offices, that I may eat a piece of bread.

In these verses we are given insight into the failings of the ministry that Eli was overseeing and for which he bore responsibility. Like so often occurs in messages from the Lord, that which the Lord has done for his people is first explained, and then the question is asked: "Why are you doing what you are doing?" We are reminded of one of this similar instances in the book of Isaiah, chapter five.

Isaiah 5:1 Now will I sing to my wellbeloved a song of my beloved touching his vineyard. My wellbeloved hath a vineyard in a very fruitful hill:
2 And he fenced it, and gathered out the stones thereof, and planted it with the choicest vine, and built a tower in the midst of it, and also made a winepress therein: and he looked that it should bring forth grapes, and it brought forth wild grapes.
3 And now, O inhabitants of Jerusalem, and men of Judah, judge, I pray you, betwixt me and my vineyard.
4 What could have been done more to my vineyard, that I have not done in it? wherefore, when I looked that it should bring forth grapes, brought it forth wild grapes?
5 And now go to; I will tell you what I will do to my vineyard: I will take away the hedge thereof, and it shall be eaten up; and break down the wall thereof, and it shall be trodden down:
6 And I will lay it waste: it shall not be pruned, nor digged; but there shall come up briers and thorns: I will also command the clouds that they rain no rain upon it.
7 For the vineyard of the LORD of hosts is the house of Israel, and the men of Judah his pleasant plant: and he looked for judgment, but behold oppression; for righteousness, but behold a cry.

Here we see the same pattern that is found in our text today. First we read of that which God has done, then the question as to why the people have gone their own way and of the judgment that will come upon them if they continue in that pathway. Here we see a picture of the heart of God, for He is longsuffering with his people/us, not willing that anyone should perish, but that all would come to repentance and faith. In our text it is clear as to why the judgment has been spoken of and of that which is coming unless Eli repents. He is speaking to Eli here, and not his sons, Hophni and Phineas.

1:29 Wherefore kick ye at my sacrifice and at mine offering, which I have commanded in my habitation; and honourest thy sons above me, to make yourselves fat with the chiefest of all the offerings of Israel my people?
30 Wherefore the LORD God of Israel saith, I said indeed that thy house, and the house of thy father, should walk before me for ever: but now the LORD saith, Be it far from me; for them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed.
31 Behold, the days come, that I will cut off thine arm, and the arm of thy father's house, that there shall not be an old man in thine house.

This is the situation that we find the child Samuel ministering unto the Lord before Eli, in a day when the word of the Lord was precious/rare and divine revelations were quite uncommon. In this backdrop the Lord began to call His mouthpiece through calling him in the night. Verse seven gives a little insight as to why it was difficult for Samuel to know that it was the Lord calling to him.

KJV 1 Samuel 3:7 Now Samuel did not yet know the LORD, neither was the word of the LORD yet revealed unto him.

After thinking three times that it was Eli calling him, Samuel at the instruction of Eli answered the Lord the fourth time with the words: "Speak Lord, for you servant hears."

The young lad was then given a message from the Lord which is as follows:

1 Semuel 3:11 And the LORD said to Samuel, Behold, I will do a thing in Israel, at which both the ears of every one that heareth it shall tingle.(quiver)
12 In that day I will perform against Eli all things which I have spoken concerning his house: when I begin, I will also make an end.
13 For I have told him that I will judge his house for ever for the iniquity which he knoweth; because his sons made themselves vile, and he restrained them not.
14 And therefore I have sworn unto the house of Eli, that the iniquity of Eli's house shall not be purged with sacrifice nor offering for ever.

Now the Lord revealed to Samuel the same message that He earlier had told unto Eli. How did Samuel respond to this? What must have been the thoughts of Eli, who must have known that the Lord had revealed something of divine knowledge to Samuel? Let us read on.

KJV 1 Samuel 3:15 And Samuel lay until the morning, and opened the doors of the house of the LORD. And Samuel feared to shew Eli the vision.
16 Then Eli called Samuel, and said, Samuel, my son. And he answered, Here am I.
17 And he said, What is the thing that the LORD hath said unto thee? I pray thee hide it not from me: God do so to thee, and more also, if thou hide any thing from me of all the things that he said unto thee.
18 And Samuel told him every whit, and hid nothing from him. And he said, It is the LORD: let him do what seemeth him good.

Apparently Samuel must have had difficulty sleeping since it is written that he feared to show the vision to Eli. After Eli asked Samuel to tell him what the Lord had said to him in the night, Samuel told him exactly what the Lord had revealed to him. At which Eli responded with the words: "It is the Lord: let him do what seemeth him good."

Whenever we read biblical history, we time and time again find ourselves identifying with the principle characters in the story. In this text we mainly get acquainted with Samuel's mother, Eli the man of God in the house of the Lord, Samuel and Hophni and Phineas and of course, the main one in the story, Samuel.

Within these stories we see the examples such as Hannah and Samuel who give us insight and direction as to what it is to follow the paths of righteousness for the sake of the Lord's name. Through the blessing of a godly mother and through the training that he received from Eli in the house of the Lord.

We are also given negative examples which warn us of the path that leads to judgment and destruction. Through both the positive examples and the negative examples before us in this account, we are counseled, rebuked, challenged and comforted as we live our lives in this fallen world. There are many things to consider in this story today, so may the Holy Spirit enlighten us by His grace to allow the Word to have free course in our hearts as we consider the beginnings of the life of the Prophet Samuel. He was raised up to be a servant of the Lord, one who the Lord desired to speak that which the Lord called upon him to speak. He did so and as one follows the course of his life one can see that he never wavered from speaking that which the Lord instructed him to speak.

Eli, on the other hand, was a man of God who served in the house of the Lord, but due to not being able to recognize and acknowledge his sin of favoring his family over the Word of the Lord came to an abrupt end as he fell out of his chariot. (1 Samuel 4:18) He was given the opportunity to repent on at least two occasions, (2:27; 3:18), but did not do so.

Today we live in the New Testament era in which Christ has come into the world, made atonement for the sins of the world, and is set at the right hand of our Father, from whence He shall come to judge the living and the dead. The judgment unto repentance was foreshadowed in the lives of those who lived in the Old Testament period, who lived in the hope of the Promise of Christ the Messiah. They were pointed to Christ through the visible means and structures in the sacrificial system of atonement which eventually found their fulfillment in the incarnational/fleshly appearing of the Son of God on earth.

Judgment is nearly always an invitation to turn from oneself unto the Lord within both the Old and New Testament. Christ has suffered the judgment for sin on our behalf and by grace through faith we are living in freedom from both the guilt of sin as well as the power of sin. The judgments for disobedience to the Word of the Lord are given so that we would return to the Lord and not have to experience judgment for our sin for all eternity. He has born the judgment for all.

Those who rejected and despised the sacrifices that the Lord had ordained and instituted were rejecting and despising the revelation that was to come through Christ. Similar words that the man of God told Eli concerning this matter can be seen in the New Testament also. Consider these verses:

KJV 1 Samuel 2:30 Wherefore the LORD God of Israel saith, I said indeed that thy house, and the house of thy father, should walk before me for ever: but now the LORD saith, Be it far from me; for them that honour me I will honour, and they that despise me shall be lightly esteemed.

KJV John 5:23 That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father. He that honoureth not the Son honoureth not the Father which hath sent him.

May the godly examples of Hannah and her son Samuel direct us and inspire us today as we go forward into the future in a world that lives a lot like Eli and his two sons. May we take the words of the Hebrew writer as encouragement and instruction today:

KJV Hebrews 12:1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,
2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.
3 For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.

May the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be upon you this day and forever!

Pastor Orval Wirkkala

Posted on 15 Jan 2012 by Pastor Orval Wirkkala
Gone but not Forgotten 1/08/2012
Grace to you, and peace from God our heavenly Father and our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Amen.

Since yesterday was a significant day in the history of our congregation as our former building of worship was removed through burning, it seemed appropriate to bring forth a message which would comfort us and strengthen us in the knowledge that even though the old church building is no more, our fellowship in Christ Jesus continues into the future in our new building.

I would like to preface this message by offering sympathy and empathy to all those who through the years were associated with the Kingston Apostolic Lutheran Church in its location at the intersection of HWY 15 and CSAH 27. Many have been blessed in Christ Jesus through the years through worship of God and through the fellowship of the Word that has been preached and taught by faithful servants within this congregation. Memories that are created in a place of worship are bound tight to the physical structure and it is with understanding of this reality that we carefully and prayerfully had approached this day.

In keeping with the thoughts shared above, and in consideration for all concerned in our community and congregation, current or past, we are planning to work toward constructing a small replica of the former building. That would give a place of memory to those who were so closely connected with the church through the years, for it is hoped that it would be built upon the same site that was occupied by the 99 yr old building. It could not only serve as a memorial, but it would provide passerbys a resting place, a place for prayer and meditation and it would also serve as a bridge to those who have continued to worship with us in our new church building which is app. 1/4 west of Hwy 15 on CSAH 27.

We not only wish to retain the memories of the building, but even more so we wish to "Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, (imitate) considering the end of their conversation (life).

8 Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever." Hebrews 13:7-8

In relation to this, we will be placing the Pastor Oscar Wilson memorial reader board that formerly was in front of the old church in the front of our new facility. The Scripture above instructs us to not forget those who have spoken the Word through out the years and to follow their example into the future. We recognize and appreciate those who labored in word and doctrine within this congregation through the years as we continue to live in the fruit of the preaching of the Gospel that they preached.. Many have faithfully taught and preached the Word in this congregation and for that we give thanks to the Lord of Lords and the King of Kings!

In our lives memories are created through happenings upon which our life is nurtured and built. Recognizing that not all memories are ones that provide growth and transition into the future, we use occasions such as these as opportunities of testing that upon which we are building our lives. We might say: "What is the foundation of my life?" It is a question that we must answer for ourselves and which answer depends upon our knowledge and understanding of God. When Jesus came to earth to redeem us, He faced those whose knowledge and understanding of God was not based upon that which God had revealed to the world through the Holy Scriptures. Let us pick up on a discussion that Jesus was having with the Jewish leaders as recorded in John's Gospel.

John 2:13 And the Jews' passover was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem,
14 And found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting:
15 And when he had made a scourge of small cords, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers' money, and overthrew the tables;
16 And said unto them that sold doves, Take these things hence; make not my Father's house an house of merchandise.
17 And his disciples remembered that it was written, The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up.
18 Then answered the Jews and said unto him, What sign shewest thou unto us, seeing that thou doest these things?
19 Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.
20 Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days?
21 But he spake of the temple of his body.
22 When therefore he was risen from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this unto them; and they believed the scripture, and the word which Jesus had said.

Jesus began to reveal in the midst of false and ignorant worship of God and pointed to the Himself as the New Temple, but neither the Jews or even His disciples understood what He was talking about.
It is no surprise that it was so hard to understand Jesus' statement which referred to Himself as the Temple in light of many years of worship which centered around a place of worship as opposed to worshipping the person of God. Let us drop back into one of the numerous places in Scripture which illustrate this reality, going back to the weeping Prophet Jeremiah.

KJV Jeremiah 7:1 The word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying,
2 Stand in the gate of the LORD'S house, and proclaim there this word, and say, Hear the word of the LORD, all ye of Judah, that enter in at these gates to worship the LORD.
3 Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, Amend your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to dwell in this place.
4 Trust ye not in lying words, saying, The temple of the LORD, The temple of the LORD, The temple of the LORD, are these.
5 For if ye throughly amend your ways and your doings; if ye throughly execute judgment between a man and his neighbour;
6 If ye oppress not the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, and shed not innocent blood in this place, neither walk after other gods to your hurt:
7 Then will I cause you to dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers, for ever and ever.
8 Behold, ye trust in lying words, that cannot profit.
9 Will ye steal, murder, and commit adultery, and swear falsely, and burn incense unto Baal, and walk after other gods whom ye know not;
10 And come and stand before me in this house, which is called by my name, and say, We are delivered to do all these abominations?
11 Is this house, which is called by my name, become a den of robbers in your eyes? Behold, even I have seen it, saith the LORD.

They put a lot of stock in the place of worship but were living inward lives of sin. They were rebuked by the Lord through Jeremiah for saying things with their mouth but were not living in a repentant heart. And therefore in the Lord's eyes, that which they called the temple, God told them that it had become a den of thieves. The Lord is not blind to what we are inside.

We now go back to the New Testament and see how Stephen, a man of honest report and full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, spoke to the Jews a number of years after Jesus had come to earth as the New Temple; had lived a perfect life, suffered, died, arose from the dead and ascended to heaven where He now reigns over the universe. Stephen spoke directly to this struggle that mankind has always faced: Worshipping a created thing, physical things, rather than the Creator. In relation to our discussion, the Jews were so attached to that which they knew, that they did not receive Jesus as the New Temple. The hung onto the old temple.
For brevity's sake, we will consider parts of the discussion. We pick up the conversation that was going on between Stephen and the Jewish leaders.

Acts 6 10 And they were not able to resist the wisdom and the spirit by which he spake.
11 Then they instigated men, which said, We have heard him speak blasphemous words against Moses, and against God.
12 And they stirred up the people, and the elders, and the scribes, and came upon him, and caught him, and brought him to the council,
13 And set up false witnesses, which said, This man ceaseth not to speak blasphemous words against this holy place, and the law:
14 For we have heard him say, that this Jesus of Nazareth shall destroy this place, and shall change the customs which Moses delivered us.
15 And all that sat in the council, looking stedfastly on him, saw his face as it had been the face of an angel.

KJV Acts 7:1 Then said the high priest, Are these things so?
2 And he said, Men, brethren, and fathers, hearken; The God of glory appeared unto our father Abraham, when he was in Mesopotamia, before he dwelt in Charran,

Stephen now recounts the history of God's progressive revelation of Himself to the world by sharing from the beginning of the Jewish nation, starting with their hero, Abraham. Please read from your Bible the verses that are inbetween these two portions. Here he focuses in on external structures (a tabernacle and a temple) which had been built according to God's plan which served them during their time, but which in God's mind pointed to the day of Jesus Christ, the True Temple. Here Stephen speaks of the transition that Jesus had pointed the Jewish leaders to in John's Gospel which we referred to earlier.

44 Our fathers had the tabernacle of witness in the wilderness, as he had appointed, speaking unto Moses, that he should make it according to the fashion that he had seen.
45 Which also our fathers that came after brought in with Jesus into the possession of the Gentiles, whom God drave out before the face of our fathers, unto the days of David;
46 Who found favour before God, and desired to find a tabernacle for the God of Jacob.
47 But Solomon built him an house.
48 Howbeit the most High dwelleth not in temples made with hands; as saith the prophet,
49 Heaven is my throne, and earth is my footstool: what house will ye build me? saith the Lord: or what is the place of my rest?
50 Hath not my hand made all these things?
51 Ye stiffnecked and uncircumcised in heart and ears, ye do always resist the Holy Ghost: as your fathers did, so do ye.
52 Which of the prophets have not your fathers persecuted? and they have slain them which shewed before of the coming of the Just One; of whom ye have been now the betrayers and murderers:
53 Who have received the law by the disposition of angels, and have not kept it.

Luke 23:44 And it was about the sixth hour, and there was a darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour.
45 And the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst.
46 And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost.

The significance of the temple veil being rent into two had escaped the Jewish leaders when Jesus had died, and in the case above in which Stephen speaks to them, it continued to escape them as is indicated by their reaction against Stephen's preaching to them and through the application he brought forth in his sermon.

Acts 7:54 When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him with their teeth.
55 But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God,
56 And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.
57 Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord,
58 And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man's feet, whose name was Saul.
59 And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.
60 And he kneeled down, and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge. And when he had said this, he fell asleep.

What did they not understand? What did they not see? The Apostle Paul in his letter to the Ephesians gives us a clear explanation as to what had happened as a result of the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. We pick up in the letter in the middle of the second chapter, remembering that Paul had expounded upon that which God had done through Christ Jesus in the beginning part of this wonderful letter of grace to the world. He now speaks to the union that Jesus Christ created when He entered into humanity and reconciled all to God.

Eph 2:11 Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands;
12 That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world:
13 But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ.
14 For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us;
15 Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace;
16 And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:
17 And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh.
18 For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.
19 Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;
20 And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone;
21 In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord:
22 In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit.

All humanity how had access to the Father by one Spirit and no one is a stranger or foreigner, but all are fellow citizens with all the saints, which make up the family of God. We are brought to God by Christ through grace by faith, which means that God put us into His family solely by His doing and has given us the faith to believe such a wonderful reality.

He goes onto say that the family that we are now a part of is built upon the foundation of the Word that God has spoken through the apostle and the prophets, with Jesus the Christ, the True Temple as the Cheif Cornerstone! The building that we are is made up of individual parts, but together we are pieced together and are growing unto an holy temple in the Lord. Within this temple is where God lives through the Spirit.

Therefore, from the Scriptures we can conclude that even though a church building is a place in which we have been blessed in Jesus Christ and precious memories are within our minds, hearts and souls, we recognize that the true temple of God is contained within the collective body of believers through and in Jesus Christ.

1 Corinthians 12:12 For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ.

13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.

14 For the body is not one member, but many.

May the memories of the blessing of worship and fellowship of the past that you experienced in the Kingston Apostolic Lutheran Church always be precious to you. May that which was planted and which sprouted in your heart in that building continue to blossom and bloom in your life so that you can be a blessing to future generations not only among those in another building, but anywhere that the Lord has called you to bloom for Him. We thank you for your patience with us during this difficult time of transition for all of us.

We invite you to worship with us in our new church building just west of Hwy 15 on CSAH 27. May the Lord richly bless you in his love!

Pastor Orval Wirkkala
Posted on 08 Jan 2012 by Pastor Orval Wirkkala

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Speak Lord, for your servant hears. 1/15/2012
- Posted by Pastor Orval Wirkkala

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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
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The Lawry Kilpela family as they grieve but yet rejoice in Lawry's being called home.