Atlantic Gospel Chapel Messages

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Eric McLaren 11-08-2020 // Unnamed Heroes of the Faith; Hebrews 11:33-40

Hebrews 11 is often known as the Hall of Faith, or the Roll Call of the Faithful.  Many of the notable characters of scripture are recorded, Enoch, Abraham, Moses, etc.  In addition to these, Hebrews 11 closes with many who are unnamed.  Yet, through the descriptions given, we see the writer of Hebrew had, or may have had specific characters in mind.  For instance, when referring to those sawn in two, he may have been thinking of the prophet Isaiah. 

In this weeks lesson, we look at six examples in Old Testament Scripture whom the writer of Hebrews may have had in mind as he penned his letter to the church.

Thank you for listening to this week's lesson.  May you be blessed and encouraged as we consider these Unnamed Heroes of the Faith.

Eric McLaren 09-20-2020 // Unnamed Heroes of the Faith; Hebrews 11:32-34; Daniel 1:1-21

Hebrews 11 is often referred to as the Roll Call of the Faithful, or the Hall of Faith.  The writer names many Old Testament saints who are examples of faithfulness.  But the writer also leaves some unnamed, although their stories are well known.

In referring to the faithful who "shut the mouths of lions," and "quenched the power of fire," we know references to Daniel and Shadrach, Meschach and Abednego.  These four men stood for their faith against Nebuchadnezzar, the head of the powerful Babylonian Empire.

This kind of faith does not grow in a vacuum.  What influenced them?  How could they stand so boldly for their God?

Today's lesson examines their lives before the Babylonian captivity and the influences in their lives that resulted in such bold faith.

Thank you for listening to today's lesson.  May you be blessed through the teaching of God's Word.

Eric McLaren 08-09-2020 //Hebrews 11:23-29 - People Who Made Choices Based on Their Faith in God

We make choices every day.  Some choices are insignificant, such as what to eat, or what to wear, etc.  Other choices are more significant, sch as education, marriage and family.  And some choices have impacts that echo into eternity.

In today's lesson we look at two people who made choices based upon their faith in God.  We consider the choices made by Moses, as well as those made by Moses' mother.  In the end, we find that while none of us will hold up a staff to part the sea, or come down from the mountain carrying tablets of stones, we can all be like Moses' mother.

Thank you for listening to today's lesson.  May you be blessed as we study God's Word together.

Eric McLaren 06-28-20 // Joseph; A Man Characterized by Forgiveness

If someone does wrong to you, many will say, "Don't get mad, get even."   But Scripture takes a different approach to the wrongs done to us.  Paul wrote to the church in Ephesus, "Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you" (Ephesians 4:32 NASB).  Peter wrote to the church in Asia, "not returning evil for evil or insult for insult, but giving a blessing instead" (1 Peter 3:9 NASB).

In today's lesson we examine the life of Joseph.  Here was a man sold into slavery by his brothers; wrongfully imprisoned in an Egyptian prison; and finally forgotten and left imprisoned by a man he helped.  But rather than getting mad, or getting even, Joseph continued to entrust himself to the Lord's will.  And when finally in a position to get even with his brothers, rather than bringing retribution, or seeking reparations, he forgave.

What lessons can we learn for ourselves from the life of Joseph?  May you be blessed as you listen to today's lesson.

Thank you for listening.

Eric McLaren 05-17-2020 // Two Spies & A Woman of Faith; Joshua 2

After forty years of wandering in the wilderness God now prepared the children of Israel to enter and begin the conquest of the land of Canaan.  Jericho, the first obstacle they faced, seemed insurmountable, if considered from merely human perspectives.  But as the two spies sent to get the lay of the land, their encounter with Rahab taught them three important lessons which are still relevant for us today.

  1. People are condemned before a Holy God and have no excuse.
  2. Just as people have no excuse, they also have opportunity to be saved.
  3. God's promise is absolute and cannot be broken.

May God's word bless you as you listen to today's lesson. 

Eric McLaren 02-16-20 // God Uses His People to Accomplish His Purposes on Earth; 2 Chronicles 21-23; 32

Our tendency is to look at the heroes of the Bible as spiritual giants.  But when we peal back the curtain on their lives we see that many were just ordinary people like the rest of us.  In fact, many of the heroes in scripture are relatively unknown.

in 2 Samuel 7:16, the Lord's purpose in redemptive history is made known when He promises King David that the line of David would be an eternal one.  Thus, the purpose of bringing the Saviour through the line of David is made known.

Opposed to this, we see Satan's attempts again and again to thwart God's purposes.  But God, in His wisdom, uses ordinary people to accomplish His plans on earth.  In today's lesson, we see two examples of this.

First, we will look briefly at 2 Chronicles 32:30 where we see the workers who built Hezekiah's Tunnel and the place this played in God's redemptive history.

Second, we will look at Jehoshabeath, the granddaughter to wicked King Ahab and Queen Jezebel.  Despite her upbringing, this relatively unknown woman was used by God to literally save the line of David, thus protecting the line that led ultimately to the Lord Jesus.

How will God use you for His purposes.  As you listen, may your heart and mind be opened to the ways in which God plans to use you; an ordinary person used for God's purposes and glory.

Eric McLaren 08-04-2019 // Hebrews 1:1-2 - The Bible; God’s Word?

The French existential philosopher, Jean-Paul Sartre, noted that it is impossible for finite man to penetrate the infinite; it is impossible for finite man to understand an infinite God.  While this is true, Sartre did not go far enough for he missed that the infinite God can reveal Himself to finite man.

This lesson explores the ways in which God has revealed Himself to man, specifically through the Bible.  As we consider the Bible, two questions need to be answered:

  1. Is the Bible really God's Word?
  2. Is the Bible we have today a reliable copy of God's Word?

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