Sunday, March 15, 2015

Once A Year And More


If you click on the graphic above, or their name, you’ll be taken to the website of The Rochester Family. They visit our church annually in the spring and it’s a great start to new life and new growth.

They sing. Oh, how they do sing! They arrive on Saturday, so they are kind enough to give a concert and we invite everyone who enjoys bluegrass gospel music. Last night we had 310 people overflowing into extra seating in our sanctuary. Remember, we are a small country church.

This morning they will sing for us again during Sunday School, a song or two during worship service, then Scott Matthews (on the right bottom in the graphic) will give the message this morning. I do wish you could be there. I enjoy hearing him give a message from God’s word.

Their lyrics are from God’s word, too. One sticks in my mind from last night:

It’s not what I’ve done, it’s that I’ve been to Calvary.

To me those words reflect two scriptures:

For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast. (Ephesians 2:8-9 KJV)

… and …

And when they were come to the place, which is called Calvary, there they crucified him, and the malefactors, one on the right hand, and the other on the left. (Luke 23:33 KJV)

There were plenty of people on that Jerusalem hill – men, women, Jews, Romans, believers, scoffers – and we know what happened to few of them. Jesus’ mother was there, and He placed her in the care of a disciple He loved. A Roman soldier there who said what I believe today:

And when the centurion, which stood over against him, saw that he so cried out, and gave up the ghost, he said, Truly this man was the Son of God. (Mark 15:39 KJV)

A visit to Calvary should reflect the life of the man who died there. We should seek to know His doctrine – the basis for His beliefs, the foundation upon which He placed His beliefs. Many heard His doctrine:

And it came to pass, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine: For he taught them as one having authority, and not as the scribes. (Matthew 7:28-29 KJV)

He shared the source of His doctrine:

And the Jews marvelled, saying, How knoweth this man letters, having never learned? Jesus answered them, and said, My doctrine is not mine, but his that sent me. If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself. (John 7:15-17 KJV)

It is a pleasure to enjoy the music and the lyrics when listening to talented people with beautiful voices. It is better when what you hear has a firm foundation in the good news that was given to all men. It is everywhere around us, that gospel first given by angels to shepherds:

And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. (Luke 2:10-11 KJV)

The Rochesters sing lyrics that tell much of His life and people’s response to it. Fortunately, I don’t have to wait until next year to hear them – I have at least ten hours of their CDs available all through the year. I’d share, but I hope you have some of your own.

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