Welcome to our Website!

Preparing for Vacation Bible School!

It’s already July and that means it’s time for Grace Baptist’s Vacation Bible School!!! It is another excellent opportunity for us to reach out to our community and share the love of Christ. This year we have the blessing of another Answers in Genesis VBS called IncrediWorld. In a world where our children our taught that all life evolved from slime, it is so important to give the next generation a foundational understanding that God is the Creator and we are made in His image.
IncrediWorld will show the children God’s fingerprints, throughout all of His creation, as they explore the amazingly designed features in the animal kingdom. Not only will they have fun, but they will also understand that since God has the power to create the Universe, He also has the power to save His people. And on that biblical foundation, we will uncover God’s plan of salvation, as it is revealed from Genesis to Revelation and allow Him to plant the seeds of His Gospel in these young children’s minds and hearts.
Our VBS also offers an excellent opportunity for all of us to be engaged in serving Christ. There are so many ways to impact the lives of these children. We need servant hearts to help with registration, games, helping the kids get from one class to another, helping with the “carnival” games on Sat., and even committing to pray for them during the VBS times. If you can only make it for one day, that is okay…everyone is welcome to share in the blessing that comes from being the hands and feet of Christ, especially to the smallest of His children.
The dates are fast approaching, July 22nd through to 25th from 5:45pm to 8:30pm and our Community Creation Celebration on Saturday July 26th from 10:00am to 2:00pm (Lunch provided.) Please contact Pam as soon as possible if you can serve and don’t forget to give a flyer to all your neighbors and friends with young children. And get ready for a thrill ride through God’s Creation!!!!



Heaven is for Real; Hallucinations are Not

This blog post is from the website of Grace Community Church.

http://www.gty.org/blog/B140428

You’re probably aware of the hit movie “Heaven Is for Real” and the popular book it’s based on. Recently, various television news programs have invited John MacArthur to explain why he rejects the story of Colton Burpo’s trip to heaven. But in those brief, edited interviews, much of John’s biblical critique ended up on the cutting-room floor. We thought it would be appropriate to take a short break from our current blog series and explain in more detail why the truth about heaven isn’t found in hallucinations and near-death experiences, but in the Word of God alone. –GTY Staff

Given the rising tides of militant atheism, postmodern skepti­cism, biblical illiteracy, self-love, and gross immorality, what are we to make of the current interest in heaven?

One thing is clear: It does not signal any significant upsurge of interest in what biblical revela­tion teaches about heaven. On the contrary, the data actually seem to indicate that lots of people are simply making up whatever concept of heaven pleases them. The ideas about heaven that get the most press are mostly figments of the human imagination that bear little (if any) resemblance to that glorious realm of Christ’s kingdom as it is described in God’s Word.

We would of course expect New Age practitioners, cranks, and cultists to abandon the Bible in favor of their own dreams and fanta­sies. But this trend of inventing one’s own personal concept of heaven seems to be an even bigger problem in the evangelical community than it is in the world at large. Evidence of this can be seen in several recent evangelical mega–best sellers.

One of the most talked-about books of 2011 was Heaven Is for Real, by Todd Burpo with Lynn Vincent. The book recounts four-year-old Colton Burpo’s vision of heaven (as told by his father to Ms. Vincent). Colton claims he visited heaven during surgery after a burst appendix nearly took his life. His stories of heaven are full of fanciful features and peculiar details that bear all the earmarks of a child’s vivid imagi­nation. There’s nothing transcendent or even particularly enlightening about Colton’s description of heaven. In fact, it is completely devoid of the breathtaking glory featured in every biblical description of the heavenly realm. That doesn’t deter Todd Burpo from singling out se­lective phrases and proof texts from Scripture, citing them as if they authenticated his son’s account.

It may be quite fascinating to read these intricately detailed ac­counts of people who claim to have come back from heaven, but that hobby is as dangerous as it is seductive. Readers not only get a twisted, unbiblical picture of heaven from these tall tales; they also imbibe a subjective, superstitious, shallow brand of spirituality. There is no rea­son to believe anyone who claims to have gone to heaven and returned (John 3:13; 1:18). Studying mystical accounts of supposed journeys into the afterlife yields nothing but confusion, contradiction, false hope, bad doctrine, and a host of similar evils.

Nevertheless, the current popularity of such books shows how hungry people are to hear about heaven. There is nothing inherently wrong with that, of course. In fact, it is a desire that can be harnessed for good, as long as we look to Scripture and let God’s Word inform our knowledge and shape our hopes.

Indeed, it is right and beneficial for Christians to fix their hearts on heaven. Scripture repeatedly urges us to cultivate that perspective: “If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth” (Colossians 3:1–2 ESV). “We look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are un­seen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:18 ESV). “Our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Philippians 3:20 ESV).

Such a perspective is the very essence of true faith, according to Hebrews 11. Those with authentic, biblical faith acknowledge that they are strangers and pilgrims on this earth (v. 13). They are seeking a heavenly homeland (v. 14). They “desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city” (v. 16 ESV). The “city” that verse refers to is the heavenly Jerusalem, an unimaginable place—the very capital of heaven. It will be the eternal abode of the redeemed. No wonder Christians are intrigued with the subject.

You simply cannot gain a better understanding of heaven than we are given in Scripture—especially not from some­one else’s dreams and near-death experiences. In the words of Charles Spurgeon:

It’s a little heaven below, to imagine sweet things. But never think that imagination can picture heaven. When it is most sublime, when it is freest from the dust of earth, when it is carried up by the greatest knowledge, and kept steady by the most extreme caution, imagina­tion cannot picture heaven. “It hath not entered the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” Imagination is good, but not to picture to us heaven. Your imaginary heaven you will find by-and-by to be all a mistake; though you may have piled up fine castles, you will find them to be castles in the air, and they will vanish like thin clouds before the gale. For imagination cannot make a heaven. “Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath it entered the heart of man to conceive” it. [1]

What God has revealed in Scripture is the only legitimate place to get a clear understanding of the heavenly kingdom. This is a point we will come back to repeatedly: The Bible is our only reliable source of information about heaven. I want to show you why it is misleading and dangerous to probe and dissect people’s near-death experiences, as if they could give us some important truth about the afterlife that we are lacking from Scripture. We’ll do that next time.

John MacArthur

(Adapted from The Glory of Heaven.)




Download the GBC Mobile App!

 

Stay Connected