Saturday, November 16, 2013

O for a thousand tongues to sing...
















When Jeff stepped up to preach this past Sunday at Immanuel Bible Church in Scottsdale, Arizona, he reminded us of one of the songs we'd just sung:


O for a thousand tongues to sing
My great Redeemer's praise.
The glories of my God and King.
The triumphs of his grace.

My gracious Master and my God,
Assist me to proclaim,
To spread through all the earth abroad
The honors of thy name.

Jesus! the name that charms our fears,
That bids our sorrows cease;.
'Tis music in the sinner's ears,
'Tis life, and health, and peace


As Jeff unpacked Mark 5:1-20, he told us how the demon-possessed man was uncontrollable and useless, an absolute slave to the forces of sin within him. But everything changed when the power of sin and Satan met the power of Christ. The demons immediately submitted and were sent plunging off the cliff in a herd of about 2000 swine. The man was free to think, move, speak -- and even clothe himself -- free of sinful demonic dominion.


He breaks the power of canceled sin,
He sets the prisoner free;
His blood can make the foulest clean;
His blood availed for me.

He speaks, and listening to his voice,
New life the dead receive;
The mournful, broken hearts rejoice,
The humble poor believe.







The saving power of Jesus the Son of God broke the power of sin, set the prisoner of Satan free, and made the foulest of the foul spiritually clean. And what was Legion's response? He wanted to become a follower of Christ. Literally, he wanted to go with Jesus; he didn't want his Deliverer to leave him.

In Christ, your head, you then shall know,
Shall feel your sins forgiv'n;
Anticipate your heaven below,
And own that love is heav'n.

But Christ had a new mission for this once-monster now-man, telling him, “Go home to your friends and tell them how much the Lord has done for you, and how he has had mercy on you.” (Mark 5:19, ESV)

While the story of this man's redemption occurred long ago, similar stories are written across the world today as men and women are freed from sin-possession through the saving power of Christ. They are freed from the master of sin to become slaves to Christ, serving and sharing this good news with others in bondage to sin.



 The 20schemes team -- including our family -- is privileged to be a part of the redemptive work going on in the poorest areas of Scotland, bringing light to a dark place as we build relationships through the local church. Like the demon-possessed man of Mark 5, we long to be with our Savior, but have been left behind to tell of His power and mercy.

Thanks to Josh Matteson, pastor of Immanuel Bible Church, for allowing us to share our mission with the church family. We were delighted to meet his wife, Tracey, and their fun-loving boys, as well as many who attended Sunday. We're so thankful for yet another church watchfully seeking ways to reach the lost, near and far.

We're also thankful for Linda, Suzanne's stepmom, who allowed us to hang out at her house during our stay in Arizona!



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