Sunday Bible Class: 8:45 a.m.
Sunday Worship Service: 10:00 a.m.

Saturday Evening Worship Service: 6:00 p.m.



A Member Church of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod

Saturday, March 21, 2015

“What Will You Do With Jesus?”

Though the spring breeze had a chill to it, the tension of the moment made the air seem thick and stuffy.

“What was it with these people?”
“Why did they have such hatred?”
“What am I missing?”

Questions and more questions swirled in the mind of Roman governor Pontius Pilate as he stood before a crazed mob shouting “Crucify him! Crucify him!” The man they wanted nailed to a cross stood next to him. He didn’t seem like a threat. No, he wasn’t dangerous. In fact, there was something in the man that caught Pilate’s attention – that created a type of attraction to him.

Normally Pilate had little concern for human suffering. His job was to maintain Roman rule and keep the tax money flowing to the emperor. But today was different. There was something that compelled the Governor to set this Jesus of Nazareth free.

First there was the interrogation. Then Jesus was sent to King Herod. There was the flogging and the attempt to have the Nazarene set free instead of a killer named Barrabbas. But none of Pilate’s strategies worked. These people wanted the man dead. And not just dead, they wanted him humiliated, tortured!

In exasperation, Pilate turned toward the crowd. He looked into the contorted faces which seemed to have almost a diabolical twist. It was at that moment Pontius Pilate, the Roman governor of the province of Judea during the reign of Emperor Tiberius shouted out the question which continues to ring in human ears today,

“What should I do with Jesus?”

The people who made up the mob on that day told Pilate to crucify him. They were done with Jesus. They hadn’t gotten what they wanted from him and now they were ready to move on to the next charismatic leader who would give them hope. But that was two thousand years ago. That was their decision. What about us? How will we answer the question, “What should I do with Jesus?”

While Pilate thought the story would end later that day after Jesus was executed, the following Sunday some inconvenient events took place which changed everything…for all time. Pilate was right. Jesus was different. He was special. He came back to life that Sunday. And so the question, “What should I do with Jesus?” remains as relevant today as it did when Pilate first asked it.

“What will you do with Jesus?” Eternity is determined by our answer.

Saturday night service: 6:00 pm
Sunday morning service: 10:00 am

Friday, March 13, 2015

“Good Eye”

Many years ago when kids eight or nine years old could still play outside without adult supervision, I would go to the nearby park in the Spring of the year to watch our neighborhood high school team, the Washington Purgolders, practice baseball. True to their name, each player wore what seemed to me a shockingly colorful uniform of purple and gold. Sitting in the bleachers I would dream of someday being out on that field wearing a purple and gold uniform, complete with a baseball hat and genuine metal cleats! That possibility seemed very far in the future at that time, so for the moment I would wait for cracked bats or look for lost baseballs in the woods behind the field.

And I also practiced the lingo. If I couldn’t play with the big guys, I could at least talk like them. One of their favorite sayings during batting practice was, “Good eye.” If the batter didn’t swing at a pitch outside the strike zone, inevitably, someone would say, “Good eye, good eye,” to which everyone would seriously nod their approval. The way they said, “Good eye” sounded so wise, so profound. So I decided to give it a try one day. A batter passed up a pitch that hit the dirt before the plate and with all the voice I could manage shouted, “GOOD EYE!” The coach and all those big players stopped, turned toward me and then let out a huge laugh before going back to their practice. Embarrassed, I kept my great wisdom to myself after that.

“Good eye!” Being able to determine whether to swing at a pitched baseball can be important, but far more critical is the way we see life. Do we have good eyes when it comes to seeing and knowing what is true and important in life? Do we see God’s priorities as our priorities or are we looking for happiness in all different places?

This weekend we will be continuing our study of the last hours of Jesus Christ’s earthly ministry. We will accompany him to the courtroom of Pontius Pilate. There we will be confronted with the Roman Governor’s haunting question, “What is truth?” Do you have a “good eye” when it comes to truth? According to Jesus, how you see truth all depends on how you see him.

If you are looking for some corrective spiritual eye surgery, join us this week end for one of our services. You might just start seeing life with a “good eye”!

Saturday night service: 6:00 pm
Sunday morning service: 10:00 am

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Enigma

For now we see indistinctly, as in a mirror, but then face to face. (I Corinthians 13:12)

They called it the enigma machine. It was a device that mechanically put messages into code. The most famous enigma machine was snatched off of a sinking Nazi U-boat in 1941. Using that machine as key, the Allies were able to decode Nazi naval messages for the rest of the war. Messages that otherwise would not have made sense, suddenly became crystal clear.

“Enigma” is a Greek word. It is the very same word that the apostle Paul used in this verse of the Bible. Translators have struggled to find a suitable word for our English language. The above translation uses the word “indistinctly.” Some translations read: “poor reflection” and “darkly.”

An enigma is a riddle, a puzzle.

With that in mind, the meaning of Paul’s words becomes easier to understand. Life often seems like a riddle. Sometimes God seems like a riddle to us. We wonder why God does this thing, but not that. We wonder how we fit into his greater plan. We wonder why he allowed certain things to come into our life—especially if they caused us anguish.

We simply do not have a clear vision of God. We have never seen him up close, and we are told that this is not possible during our earthly life.

Three disciples on the Mount of Transfiguration caught a mere glimpse of him when the face and clothes of Jesus began to shine with a blinding light, and God the Father thundered from heaven: “This is my Son!”

It helps us to look into the account of what Jesus said and did while he lived on the earth. We gain insight as we listen to him throughout the pages of the Bible. We come to better understand the catastrophe that sin has caused this world, and the fierce anger of the holy God against it. We begin to grasp how high and wide is the mercy and love of God as we trace the unfolding of his plan of salvation through the pages of Scripture

The picture of heavenly things is not clear to those still living on earth. It’s like looking at a far off person’s reflection in a mirror. We see a general outline. We have some idea of his size. But, if that is all we can see, we still have questions.

How different if we stood face to face with the person! Then every detail would be clear.

It should not surprise us if we have questions about the details of God’s plans for us.

One day it will all be clear. One day we will understand everything perfectly. One day our Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier will be an enigma no longer.

This devotion was written by Pastor Paul Ziemer

Saturday night service: 6:00 pm
Sunday morning service: 10:00 am

Friday, February 27, 2015

The Cross Was His Choice

He knew it was coming. He even told his friends months before what was going to happen. They couldn’t believe it. In fact, they had trouble even comprehending why he would talk about such things. But he did. And he talked about them over and over.

He didn’t have to go to Jerusalem. He could have stayed in Galilee where it was safe. But instead, he put himself in the most dangerous setting possible. He went to the Temple and caused riot – just before Passover, no less.

Even the night before he was put to death he had countless opportunities to walk away. But he didn’t. To be honest, it almost seemed like he was orchestrating the final outcome. But why? Why would anyone purposely do everything to make his own execution take place? Why would Jesus choose the cross?

You are the answer. Have you ever thought about Jesus’ crucifixion that way? Have you contemplated the immense truth of the Son of God choosing death so that you might live with him for eternity? If you haven’t, you’ve shortchanged yourself. We spend our lives looking to be loved and love. We give every effort to be seen by others as people of value. And so often, so very often we come up short when all the while supernatural love and worth are available to us at the cross.

Jesus Christ chose the cross so that you would be loved and have the greatest worth – for all of eternity. If that doesn’t make a difference in your life, nothing will.

Saturday night service: 6:00 pm
Sunday morning service: 10:00 am

Friday, February 20, 2015

The Jesus Challenge

Lent marks the 40 days before Easter. It is a time when Christians focus intensely on the suffering and death of Jesus. And it is precisely the cross which turns so many people off to Christ. They are willing to accept his teachings such as, “Love your neighbor as yourself”, but to believe with all one’s heart that we are so alienated from God because of our sin that only the death of the Son of God could forgive that sin – well, such a concept is just too much for them to accept.

Two thousand years ago the apostle Paul openly admitted, “The cross is offensive.” It is offensive to our pride, to our independence, to our “can-do” spirit. The cross tells us we are helpless, totally dependent on divine mercy. The cross of Christ is the greatest of insults to the human heart.

But to those who have experienced life and looked at it with realistic eyes, for those who have come to grips with the certainty of death and the loss of everything dear – the cross, the old rugged cross becomes the most precious truth in the world. For it is in the cross that we have hope, we have comfort, we have life no matter the circumstances in which we may find ourselves!

Jesus challenges us to see human life for what it is, to honestly evaluate our capabilities to resolve our problems – especially the problems of evil and death. But he also offers us the ultimate solution – a solution that is free and full.

Join us for one of our weekend services. Let’s walk together the journey of Lent.

Saturday night service: 6:00 pm
Sunday morning service: 10:00 am

Friday, February 13, 2015

Praying Like Jesus Prayed

“I need to pray more!”
“I’ll be praying for you.”
“About all we can do now is pray.”

Those are all statements we can identify with. As Christians we know that prayer is important. We believe it makes a difference. But the sad truth is, we very often don’t pray. We all have our reasons, but we’re the ones who lose the most when prayer becomes only an occasional activity in our busy lives.

While Jesus said a lot about prayer, he also prayed a lot and we have many of his prayers recorded in the Gospels. This Sunday, rather than just talk about prayer, we’re going to pray through the prayers of Jesus. Maybe if we learn to pray like him, our own prayers will become more real and relevant.

Saturday night service: 6:00 pm
Sunday morning service: 10:00 am

Saturday, February 7, 2015

How to Lose Heaven

Why in the world would a Christian want to even think about losing heaven, much less consider how to make that happen? Because Jesus did. In fact, he frequently talked about how people who thought they were going to heaven were actually doing everything possible to give up exactly that in which they had so much confidence.

This Sunday we are going to study a story Jesus told about a wealthy man who prepared a sumptuous banquet for his friends. When it came time for the festivities to begin, however, none wanted to attend. They all made excuses that they had better things to do!

The point of Jesus’ parable was: people can outwardly receive God’s heaven invitation, but their priorities, attitudes and lifestyles can cause them to not take that invitation seriously. And for Jesus, to not take heaven seriously is to lose it.

When you became a Christian, Satan did not suddenly call off all attacks on your faith. Instead, he doubled them. Those attacks can be “in your face”, or they can be so subtle, we sometimes don’t even realize they are happening. No Christian would ever admit to wanting to lose heaven. But we are definitely all open to being led to believe that heaven is for such a long time in the future that all we really need to think about is taking care of business today.

An intense focus on the present very often leads to a dismissal of eternity. There is just too much to worry about today and heaven is forgotten.

Does your spiritual vision need readjustment? Accept our invitation to study the banquet Jesus offers this weekend. It might just help you to see things differently.

Saturday night service: 6:00 pm
Sunday morning service: 10:00 am

Friday, January 30, 2015

Is God Cheering for the Patriots or the Seahawks?

If you dismissed the question above as silly, you are in the minority opinion of the American people. According to a recent poll, 53% of Americans believe that God “rewards athletes who have faith with good health and success”.

This Sunday the world will stop for the sports world’s undisputed biggest yearly event – the Super Bowl. What started as a game which drew a less than sell-out crowd in 1967 has become the icon for our supersized, superstar culture. Everything will be big. Everyone will be beautiful and talented. Even the TV commercials will be the best of the best. Super Bowl Sunday is not for the average guy on the street, except to buy lots of food, souvenirs and a bigger big screen TV (for the game, of course).

Yes, we give lip service to the old phrase “all people are created equal”, but when it comes to Super Bowl Sunday, the real us comes out. We all want to be either a starting quarterback or the entertainer at half time. And every form of the media gives its very best effort to reinforce our fantasies.

What do you think God makes of all our excitement over Super Bowl Sunday? We can get a pretty good idea by looking at a story Jesus told many years ago. It’s a story about two men, one fantastically successful and the other a social outcast. The outcome of their lives seems to be a no brainer, but the way Jesus explains it, we’re left scratching our heads and wondering if maybe we’ve got to readjust our thinking.

Enjoy Super Bowl Sunday, it’s a lot of fun. But what Jesus Christ offers you for the long term, makes the Super Bowl look like a pick-up game in a back alley. Join us for one of our week end services. Really, it might even make the game better!

Saturday night service: 6:00 pm
Sunday morning service: 10:00 am

Hawaii Lutheran Church (WELS)

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Honolulu, HI
Community Lutheran Church holds protestant chapel services in Honolulu, Hawaii near Pearl Harbor, HI. We are next to the USS Arizona Memorial, Pearl Harbor Naval Base, Hickam Air Force Base, and Fort Shafter Hawaii. Look for us directly behind the Salt Lake, Hawaii, Target.