Gone to the Birds
Lessons from the Divine Ornithologist - Part 3
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SpeakerDwight K. Nelson
Since 1983, Dwight Nelson has served as lead pastor of the Pioneer Memorial Church on the campus of Andrews University. He preaches on the “New Perceptions” telecast, teaches at the theological seminary and has written some books, including The Chosen. He and his wife, Karen, are blessed with two married children and 2 granddaughters.
More In This Series
"Gone to the Birds: Lessons from the Divine Ornithologist"—3
- Matthew 23:37
- Jesus: "How often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, but you would not."
- Craig Keener: "Jewish tradition claimed that Jewish people were under God's wings, and when a Jewish person converted a Gentile, he or she brought that Gentile 'under the wings of God's presence.'" (The IVP Bible Background Commentary 111)
- "No more poignant or tender expression of solicitude ever came from the lips of Jesus." (SDABC 5:493)
- Desire of Ages: "Divine pity marked the countenance of the Son of God as He cast one lingering look upon the temple and then upon His hearers. In a voice choked by deep anguish of heart and bitter tears He exclaimed, 'O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, thou that killest the prophets, and stonest them which are sent unto thee, how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not!' This is the separation struggle. In the lamentation of Christ the very heart of God is pouring itself forth. It is the mysterious farewell of the long-suffering love of the Deity." (620)
- Psalm 91
- KJV (vv1-2)—"He that dwelleth in the secret place of the Most High [Elyon] shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty [Shaddai]. I will say of the LORD [Yahweh], He is my refuge and my fortress: my God [Elohim]; in him will I trust."
- Ellen White: "God's commandment-keeping people stand under the broad shield of Omnipotence." (8T 120)
- Psalm 124:7—"We have escaped like a bird from the fowler's snare; the snare has been broken, and we have escaped."
- NET Bible dictionary: "FOWLER: A professional birdcatcher. In the days previous to firearms, birds were captured with nets spread on the ground, in traps and snares. . . . or the use of the throw-stick (Ecclesiasticus 11:30). This was a stick 1 1/2 feet in length and 1/2 inches in diameter, hurled with a rotary motion at the legs of the birds and was very effective when thrown into flocks of ground birds, such as partridge or quail, especially if the birds were running up hill." (http://classic.net.bible.org/dictionary.php?word=FOWLER)
- Ecclesiastes 9:12—"Moreover, no one knows when their hour will come: As fish are caught in a cruel net, or birds are taken in a snare, so people are trapped by evil times that fall unexpectedly upon them."
- Patriarchs and Prophets: "The great mass of the world will reject God's mercy, and will be overwhelmed in swift and irretrievable ruin. But those who heed the warning shall dwell 'in the secret place of the Most High,' and 'abide under the shadow of the Almighty.'" (167)
- Psalm 91:4—"He will cover you with His feathers, and under His wings you will find refuge."
- Psalm 17:8-9—"Keep me as the apple of Your eye; hide me under the shadow of Your wings, from the wicked who oppress me, from my deadly enemies who surround me."
- Psalm 57:1—"Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me! For my soul trusts in You; and in the shadow of Your wings I will make my refuge, until these calamities have passed by."
- Psalm 91:11—the line Satan left out—"He will guard you in all your ways."
- Memorize Psalm 91—
- "Let the more important passages of Scripture [e.g., Psalm 91] . . . be committed to memory, not as a task, but as a privilege. Though at first the memory may be defective, it will gain strength by exercise . . ." (CG 511)
- According to the Journal of the American Medical Association (Vol 287, No 6, p 742), the National Institute of Aging found that "adults who regularly participate in intellectually stimulating activities [such as memorization] may reduce their risk of developing dementia such as Alzheimer's disease by as much as 47%."
"Under His wings I am safely abiding"
William Orcutt Cushing
Please mark Sabbath, October 3 (9:00/11:45 AM), for a joyful celebration of the Lord's Supper as a worshiping community. While we will participate with actual emblems of bread and wine, because of the pandemic the elements will be prepackaged for your safety. These packaged elements will be available for your pickup at the church office the week before (Monday, September 28 through Sabbath, October 3). On-site worshipers will receive the packaged communion elements upon arriving for worship Sabbath morning.
But how will we celebrate foot washing? We're inviting every worshiper and family to experience Jesus' example in John 13 by washing each other's feet that Friday evening where you live. If you would like someone with whom to share this foot washing, you may either invite a friend to join you or please call Claudia Sowler (269-471-3134) for arrangements. Why not make this foot washing a part of your Friday evening worship as we gather across this community to welcome the Lord of the Sabbath into our homes at sundown?
Then Sabbath morning through music, prayer, the reading, and preaching of the Word ("American Apocalypse: How to Train Your Dragon—By the Blood of the Lamb") let's throw wide our hearts to the Christ we love to worship. "Do this in remembrance of Me" (Luke 22:19).
The 4th Quarter Lesson Study Guides are ready for you to pick up at the church office during regular business hours.
Pioneer's Bible Journey Sabbath School class will be using the Experiencing God: Knowing and Doing the Will of God (Study Guide) next quarter, beginning October 3. If you have always wanted to read this book, which has changed so many lives, you are welcome to
join us by Zoom. The class meets each Sabbath from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. The 270-page study guide, which is conveniently divided into 12 weekly lessons, can be purchased at Amazon.com for $15.99. For more information and to receive the Zoom link each week, please contact Jane Thayer at email@example.com.
Are you friendly and do you enjoy social media? Then, we have a great opportunity for you to be involved in ministry. Through streaming its services on Facebook Live and our website, Pioneer Memorial Church reaches thousands of people every single week. We’re looking to build a new team of local moderators/hosts for our online chat experiences. You could do this from your home. For more information contact Rodlie Ortiz at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you to all those who helped in any way to promote and support our July 23 Red Cross Blood Drive. That includes the Pioneer pastors and staff and especially the Pioneer Safety Committee who helped us establish COVID-related safety protocols and procedures with the Red Cross for the drive. Thank you to those who recruited someone to give, promoted the drive, helped set up, take down, register participants and
provide refreshments after donations. And, a SUPER SPECIAL THANK YOU to those that Gave The Gift Of Life by donating precious blood. We had one of our most successful summer blood drives ever despite the COVID virus (or, maybe because of the COVID virus). Less people away at camp meetings and traveling and vacationing? Just a hunch. Our next blood drive is scheduled for October 20, 2020 and again on February 24, 2021. Be well and God Bless! -Larry Ulery
Over the summer and fall of 2019 Pioneer underwent significant physical renovation—including a new roof and a major Sanctuary makeover. During the same time congregation leaders engaged in multiple conversations about our missional renovation—how does a faith community like Pioneer seriously engage and impact the people around us for Christ? From this dialogue emerged a fresh new expression of our Pioneer mission: "Love on the Move."