Come this Friday night (Sept. 25 at 7:30 PM) for our Satellite vespers in the Pioneer parking lot. Our hard working team of youth would love it if you could join us. We are having a drive-in worship. Bring your lawn chair if you are comfortable sitting outside. Pastor Eric Bell will be our speaker. Hope to see you there.
The Last Letter
Wretched (Last Letter for America)
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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
"The Last Letter: Wretched (Last Letter for America)"
» Laodicea and America (Revelation 3:14-19)
• Parallel #1—
• Ranko Stefanovic: “Because of its favorable location on the system of Roman roads, the city became one of the greatest commercial and financial centers of the ancient world.” (Revelation of Jesus Christ 144)
• Parallel #2—
• Parallel #3—
• Parallel #4—
• Roy Allen Anderson: “Valuable wool was produced in the valley, soft in texture, glossy black in color, but tinged as it were with violet. Black garments were worn almost exclusively by the Laodiceans as evidence of their wealth.” (Unfolding the Revelation 42)
• Parallel #5—
• Parallel #6—
• Jacques Doukhan: “Their mentality is but the symptom of a civilization that prides itself in its secularism and humanism while excluding God. . . . The human has usurped the divine on all levels.” (Secrets of Revelation 46)
• Parallel #7—
• Greek—”a people judged”
•Ellen White: “The Lord has done more for the United States than for any other country upon which the sun shines. . . . Here Christianity has progressed in its purity. . . . But the enemy of all righteousness has designs upon God’s purpose for this country. He will bring in enterprises that will lead men to forget that there is a God. Worldliness and covetousness, which is idolatry, will prevail through the working of the archdeceiver, till the law of God, in all its bearings, shall be made void.” (Maranatha 193)
• James Warren: “[Roger] Williams disavowed the Puritan’s cherished belief that their Holy Commonwealths were in a special covenant with God. There was no ‘chosen nation’ in the seventeenth century, nor had there been once since Moses’ Israel. Williams believed . . . that ‘since the coming of Christ the only way God had contracted with men . . . was through the churches of Christ. . . . Nobody of men who now employed force in defense of religion, whether at home or abroad, could claim the name Christian.’” (God, War and Providence 70-71)
• America is a Christian nation.
• Martin Luther King, Jr: “The church must be reminded that it is not the master or the servant of the state, but rather the of the state.”
• Jonathan Walton: “‘Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness’ are promised by America and God. But they are not the same in origin, practice, or motive. The goals and intentions of the Declaration of Independence sit in opposition to the gospel of Christ. The totality of Scripture does not endorse the marriage of God and country or the establishment, development, or practices of any country in the name of Jesus.” (Twelve Lies That Hold America Captive: And the Truth That Sets Us Free 18)
»So what hope is there for this nation?
•Revelation 14:6-7—”And I saw another angel flying in midheaven, having an eternal gospel to preach to those who live on the earth, and to every nation and tribe and tongue and people; and he said with a loud voice, ‘Fear God, and give Him glory, because the hour of His judgment has come; worship Him who made the heaven and the earth and sea and springs of waters.’”
• Facebook now offers gender options: “Last year we were proud to add a custom gender option to help people better express their identities on Facebook. We collaborated with our Network of Support, a group of leading LGBT advocacy organizations, to offer an extensive list of gender identities that many people use to describe themselves. After a year of offering this feature, we have expanded it to include a free-form field. Now, if you do not identify with the pre-populated list of gender identities, you are able to add your own.” (www.facebook.com/facebookdiversity/posts/last-year-we-were-proud-to-add-a-custom-gender-option-to-help-people-better-expr/774221582674346/)
• Jesus is America’s last great hope.
• Acts 4:12—”’Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved [than the name of Jesus].”
• John 4:42—”They said to the woman, ‘We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this Man really is the Savior of the world.’”
• Jon Meacham: “‘A bold President who knew himself to be supported by a majority in the country, might be tempted to override the law, and deprive the minority of the protection which the law affords it,’ [James] Bryce wrote. ‘He might be a tyrant, not against the masses, but with the masses.’” (The Soul of America: The Battle for Our Better Angels 271)
• America’s thought leaders need Liberty.
God save America—and let me help You!
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."