As of today, we’ve fully returned to online worship in cooperation with local health regulations aimed at stemming the spread of COVID-19 in our Region of Peel. You’ll notice our format is a bit different this morning. We have only one YouTube worship song as Pastor Bodner will read two hymns for us in the service recording as well as pray. We look forward to the day when we can sing and pray corporately as a church family, but nonetheless, we’re grateful to hear truth in any form we can!
Pastor Bodner has been preaching on a three-fold parable told by Jesus in Luke 15: the parables of the lost coin, the lost sheep, and the prodigal son. We looked last week at the prodigal son from the perspective of his loving father. We return to the prodigal son today, now from the perspective of the prodigal’s elder brother, for we learn from the brother’s response that he is also lost, though in a different way. Just like his wandering brother, the elder brother needs his loving father to seek him, find him, and save him.
These parables invite us to see our own need to be found, and Pastor Bodner echoes the invitation of Jesus Christ as he writes, “One way or another, all of us are lost. One way or another you are lost. There is room at the Cross for you today — whether you seem nice or nasty, virtuous or vile to yourself or to others.”
May God bless our worship today.
First Song: Grace That is Greater Than All Our Sin
You can watch our service livestream at 11 AM on our Facebook page. The video will be uploaded to YouTube later in the day and also posted here. The message is brought to us by Pastor John Bodner, an intinerant minister attached to Calvary.
“The business of peacemaking is a task that should be common to the members of God’s family.”
A quick note before we begin: due to recent changes to COVID-19 regulations in our province and region, we will be returning fully to online services as of next Sunday, 25 April 2021. Read here for more details.
We have been studying a trinity of parables: the lost sheep, the lost coin, and today, one of the most familiar of Jesus’s parables, the prodigal son. Pastor Bodner writes, “It is [God’s] divine knowledge of the human heart that makes this entire threefold parable so compelling, so telling, so searching. And here, in this most familiar picture of a prodigal son, a son lost and found, we find the Saviour reading the heart of the sinner, and revealing the heart of God the Father.”
The sermon will bring out the depths of the son’s fall (mirroring our own sinful flight from our loving Heavenly Father) so we may more richly appreciate the heights of the prodigal’s redemption when he returns ruined, ashamed, and repentant to find that the love of his father (like God our Father) is undimmed.
Good morning, church. We who once were lost are happy to be found, and found together!
The sermon this morning continues our look at the trinity of parables told by Jesus in Luke 15 about the lost being found and reflecting the seeking, saving nature of our triune God:
The loving heart of God the Father
The grace of the Son
The communion of the Holy Spirit
The parable in focus today is that of the woman and the lost coin. Pastor Bodner paints the scene for us in detail, elaborating on the value of the coin to the woman to help us more fully appreciate its importance to her, and therefore our value to Christ. This is the message of the parable: “You are that coin. You are God’s treasure…but you are God’s lost treasure.”
Consider these words, also from message, which echo the words of Christ:
“You are not listening to me by accident; God has Himself appointed you to hear and know He has not forgotten you, He has not forsaken you. You are being sought out; He is seeking you, till He find you.
“You may be found, and being found bring joy to God’s heart — a joy that will fill all heaven and earth.”
May God bless our worship this morning.
First Song: Amazing Grace
Amazing grace! How sweet the sound That saved a wretch like me! I once was lost, but now am found; Was blind, but now I see.
’Twas grace that taught my heart to fear, And grace my fears relieved; How precious did that grace appear The hour I first believed.
Through many dangers, toils, and snares, I have already come; ’Tis grace hath brought me safe thus far, And grace will lead me home.
The Lord has promised good to me, His Word my hope secures; He will my Shield and Portion be, As long as life endures.
Today we are celebrating the awesome power of Jesus Christ over sin, death, and Satan by His death on the cross and His resurrection on the third day, making the only way for forgiveness of sins, restored relationship with God, and eternal life. That’s quite a lot to be thankful for!
We worship today with a message about Jesus’s greatest parable: the lost sheep. Pastor Bodner will take us through the purpose, picture, plot, and point of the parable. Because of the Saviour’s love for us, no cost was too high to pay, no burden too heavy to bear to bring us home.
Jesus Christ is willing and able to save. Are you willing to seek?
Today we commemorate the immense suffering of Jesus Christ and His loving sacrifice on the cross to make a way for the forgiveness of sins. While we don’t have a new message to for you today, but what better time to watch the Good Friday message Pastor Ralph recorded last year?
In this video, Pastor Ralph explains the meaning and message of Good Friday — specifically, what does it mean when we say “Jesus died for us/for our sins”? Who is included in “us”? If I live well, am I still sinful? What was the purpose of Jesus’s death? Is this even relevant to me? Watch the message below to find out more.
It’s Palm Sunday, and today we gather to worship the God who turns death into life.
We rejoice that our church building was able to reopen with 15% capacity today, and we count it a blessing that we can continue to gather here online for a time of worship each week.
Pastor John Bodner brings us a message today entitled “This Man receiveth sinners.” Pastor Bodner will introduce us both to “This Man” and to the “sinners,” explaining the nuances of what they seemed to be and what they proved to be.
It’s by God-given discernment that anyone is able to recognise the differences between human appearances and spiritual realities that will be reflected upon today. If God has given you that discernment, and you can see and hear them, will you act? Will you come to Him, “This Man” Christ Jesus, and follow Him in loving obedience?
We thank God for His many blessings this week, including the blessing of Christian fellowship, and we continue to lift Pastor Ralph in prayer. We thank every one of you who has been lifting him also. May we continue to trust that whatever God ordains is right!
Pastor John Bodner brings a second message highlighting the terms Christ sets for a relationship with Him, focusing on Luke 14:25-35. This week we look at the set of three parables used in the text, and consider how they are applied to the Christian life:
The drafting table to count the cost of construction
The council table to count the cost of conflict
The kitchen table to count the cost of character
These three parables reinforce that it’s not personal quality that produces spiritual vitality, but rather the necessity of divine grace in the daily life of a true believer: “Gifts mean nothing; grace means everything.”
It’s our prayer that you will gain a richer understanding of, and appreciation for, our Lord Jesus Christ as we worship today.
Good morning, Calvary family and friends! It’s a joy to spend this Lord’s Day with you.
We have passed another week suffering the pangs of uncertainty and the aches of grief that come from feeling life as we have known it being torn and reshaped, especially without knowing when, how, or to what degree we will experience this change. All this is compounded by the cold irony of a virus which forces us to be apart when we most yearn to be together.
The pain is real, and it is awful. It reminds us that life was not designed to take this course, and that we live under the fearful shadow of frailty and death because of the Fall — because of sin.
Equally real is the peace of Christ. One of the most familiar portions of scripture to many people is Psalm 23. Consider the hope of its opening verses:
1 The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
3 He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
If we will truly trust in the Lord, our every need will be met, our every fear will be answered with peace. This is His promise not just for now, but for all the days of our lives. Nothing, not even death — not even death — is true harm for a believer in Christ. Life for a believer is the daily opportunity to glorify God, death is the eternal joy of being with Him in Heaven. That’s victory!
If that sounds good, you’re right. But if you’re willing to surrender your life to Christ, it must be on His terms, not yours. The details of that beautiful surrender will be the focus of today’s sermon.
We’re thankful for the spiritual gifts, scriptural burden, and holy calling of Pastor John Bodner, who brings us the message again this morning.
The sermon today is concerned with the conditions of a disciple relationship with Christ. Pastor Bodner will show how Christ demands everything of us if we are to be His disciples — all we love, all we do, all we have. These must be given gratefully and willingly. These are His terms.
If that seems like a lot, we fail to appreciate that Christ has already paid far more for us than anything He could ever ask of us.
May God prepare our hearts to receive His Word today.