Weekly Update from Pastor Phil


Signs of Vacation Bible School starting this Wednesday through Friday, 6:00–8:30 p.m. are starting to emerge around the church building. I walk past Chris’ office door and see what almost looks like a Hobbit hole entrance. I’m not sure what it is but I have a hint that it will show up as part of the teaching illustrations for VBS this week. How thankful we are for those who have prepared for this time of investing God’s Word in our children! Do pray for VBS. And please feel free to invite or bring along some kids from your neighborhood to participate. They’ll have dinner each night, so no need to rush around to come up with something. Bring them on! Register here.

We were thankful to have an interview with Jeff N. who serves in Central Asia during Sunday School this week. He gave us a lot of insights on life in a very conservative Islamic city, as well as some of the struggles that our workers have to maintain a gospel influence in that setting. Let’s pray for Jeff, Jen, and their boys as they enjoy the respite of their stateside before returning to their place of service. We’re returning to our ongoing study this Sunday in Sunday School on how to interpret God’s Word, picking up where we left off in Micah 5:5.

I’m looking forward to preaching this week at Cherokee Baptist Church in Memphis where our good friend Jeremy Wright serves as senior pastor. Jeremy has done a wonderful job of shepherding that body that has such a rich history in our city. I’ll also be doing a talk during Sunday School and fielding questions on church polity. I will appreciate your prayers for that time that the Lord might be pleased to use it for His glory. By the way, Jeremy is the guy behind the scene who sets up my Pastors & Pastoring Podcast (On Apple iTunes here). He’s spent countless hours getting everything operative in order to serve the wider body of Christ’s servants in other places. Pray for this brother and his faithful service to the body of Christ. And pray for the usefulness of Pastors & Pastoring to encourage brothers in gospel work.

I want to remind you about this year’s National Founders Conference, October 3–5, hosted by South Woods.  The regular registration form for the Founders Conference can be linked here: http://founders.org/events/2017/10/2017-national-founders-conference/. I’m looking forward to the time of fellowship, preaching, discussion, and Christ-centered worship during these days. It will be great to have Ray Ortlund Jr., Geoff Thomas, Tom Nettles, Fred Malone, and others joining us for these days. You can check the full schedule out at the Founders website.

The Apostle John’s explanation of the new birth in his epistle parallels the extensive treatment of it in John 3. We considered how the only Christians that John knew to be belong to Christ are those born of God. But what does that mean? I hope that you’ll find good help as we consider his theme of the new birth in this week’s study of 1 John. Matt Sliger will follow up this coming Sunday as John continues to identify believers as those born of God, while expanding on the centrality of the gospel in that declaration. Pray for Matt as he prepares for Sunday’s exposition.

Phil N.