Wednesday, March 28, 2018

It’s No April Fools, He Is Alive

For Christians, it almost seems sacrilegious that we will be celebrating Easter on the first of April, the day known as April Fools day. It is inevitable that there will be some who will take the opportunity to ridicule the resurrection of Jesus Christ by comparing it to an April Fools joke.

But maybe having Easter fall on April 1st is healthy for us Christians because it compels us to confront the question, “Did Jesus physically rise from the dead in a specific time in human history?” A serious consideration of this question ought to lead us to a resounding, “He is risen. He is risen indeed.”

The resurrection of Jesus, however, is meant to produce much more than just an emotional affirmation of its truthfulness. The fact that Jesus came back from the grave changed the lives of his first disciples which in turn led them to change the world. The same can be true for us.

The great English writer G. K. Chesterton was asked once by a reporter what he would do if the Risen Christ were now standing right behind him. The questioner knew of Chesterton's firm belief in the bodily resurrection of Christ, but he was not prepared for the answer he got from Mr. Chesterton, who simply replied "but He is."

Consider how our lives would be different if we took seriously Chesterton’s statement, “He is standing right behind me”? Our celebration of Jesus’ resurrection is meant to remind us that Christ’s promise to “be with us always” is to be practically lived out each day. Think about the possibilities of that kind of life!

Join us for Easter!

Easter breakfast: 8:30 am
Easter morning worship: 10:00 am

Friday, March 23, 2018

What Will You Do with King Jesus?

That was pretty much the question the Jewish religious leaders were left with after the events of Palm Sunday. The preacher/miracle worker/rabbi from Galilee had taken the city of Jerusalem by storm earlier in the day putting the name “Messiah” on everyone’s lips. Jesus had left no doubt about his claim when he entered Jerusalem that day, fulfilling the messianic prophecy every God-fearing Jew had learned from Zechariah, that the Messiah would enter the capital riding on a donkey.

And now what to do with this self-proclaimed king? That was the question those in power were struggling to answer. We know the conclusion they came to – “kill Jesus”. Only five days later, led by the High Priest Caiaphas, Jesus of Nazareth was sentenced to death by crucifixion.

Killing Jesus, however, did not silence, once and for all, the question, “What will you do with King Jesus?” Because of his resurrection, Jesus confronts us, two thousand years later with the same challenge. Will we receive him as he claims, the Messiah – King of Kings and Lord of Lords? Or will we reject him as an imposter as the religious leaders did when they sent him to the cross?

If you are struggling with an answer to Jesus’ question, join us for one of our weekend services.

Saturday evening worship: 6:00 pm
Sunday morning worship: 10:00 am

Friday, March 16, 2018

Breaking Point

Alone with a choice to make. Take the easy way out or do what needs to be done. But the right choice has a cost, a huge cost.

No one likes to be in a situation like the one described above. We want what is certain and sure, what is pleasant and easy. We do everything to eliminate the unknown from our lives. Sacrifice for what is right can make cowards of us all.

The Garden of Gethsemane is a scene of decision in the life of Jesus Christ which brought him to the breaking point. He could have walked away from it all, escaping through the back of the garden and disappearing into the barren Judean Wilderness nearby. But that was really no option. Everything he had done up to that moment pointed to what he was about to experience. His birth, ministry, miracles and teaching were all just a preparation for the cross.

But what a cross! What a sacrifice! As he trembled, soaked in bloody sweat on the damp ground by an olive tree the pressure of actually going through with it all was overwhelming.

You know how the story goes. You’re familiar with the events after Gethsemane. Most are. The question is, “Why? Why would he go through with it when it wasn’t even a problem of his making?” That’s where we come in – you and me. Christ went through his breaking point so that we can have the strength to overcome our breaking point. Someday we’re going to breath our last and then stand on the edge of eternity. At that moment, only one thing will matter to us – that Jesus Christ got off his knees in Gethsemane and walked to the cross of Golgotha.

Spend some time in the Garden of Gethsemane with us this weekend as we contemplate how Jesus went through his breaking point – for us.

Saturday evening worship: 6:00 pm
Sunday morning worship: 10:00 am

Friday, March 9, 2018

Our War Within

It is downright unnerving to imagine that at this very moment there is a super powerful being lurking around you with only one intent – to lead you into believing that he has more to offer you than God. If you are thinking of some darkly dressed ugly creature spewing saliva from his mouth with a crazed look on his face, you’ve got it all wrong. Satan is a master of disguise and deception. Yes, he can be crude and frightening, but he can also be debonair and seductive. It all depends on the kind of web of lies he is weaving to catch you in.

The war between God and Satan within each one of us may be invisible but it is more real than much of what you experience in your daily life. It is ongoing, fierce and with eternal consequences. Judas lost the war. Peter, through Jesus Christ, won it. What about you?

The first step to victory is knowing what this war is all about. That’s what we’re going to be talking about this weekend in our worship services. We’re going to study what happened when Peter, one of Jesus’ main disciples, denied even knowing Christ. We’ll look at the battle he lost dreadfully and the ultimate victory Christ gave him afterward. Peter’s story is a glimpse of what is going on inside us.

The war within you is raging whether you choose to acknowledge it or not. The sooner you do, however, the sooner Christ will take the field for you. Then, there is no doubt about the outcome.

Saturday evening worship: 6:00 pm
Sunday morning worship: 10:00 am

Saturday, March 3, 2018

The Generosity Transformation

There is a passage in the Bible which says, “It is more blessed to give than to receive.” There aren’t too many who can hear that passage without at least having to suppress a cynical, “Really!?!? That’s not the world I live in!”

Our world runs on the belief that the person with the most stuff is the happiest. We see it lived out in real life and on TV. We’re encouraged to believe it by all the advertisements we’re exposed to each day. And, we’ve got something inside us that wants us to believe it with all our hearts. In an environment like that, how can giving ever be better than getting?

While we may think the above described way of thinking is “reality”, just the opposite is true. Instead, it is the deception of Satan to take our eyes off the God who created and redeemed us. Every single human being struggles with the sin of “me first”. It was the first sin and it continues to be the most destructive. “Me first” or “I’m going to live my life the way I want” pushes God out of his rightful place in our hearts and concentrates all our attention and focus on ourselves. And being selfish just feeds that tendency.

Generosity breaks the cycle of self-fixation. It takes our eyes off ourselves and makes us realize that there is more to this world than “me, myself and I”. And very often, that is the first step God uses to open our eyes to who he is.

When generosity is coupled with our walk with Christ, it becomes a powerful tool which He uses to ever increasingly take our eyes off our self-centered desires which enslave us and give us the opportunity of experiencing the freedom of a life lived for him. In heaven, we will become like Christ, free of sin and all its consequences. While we’re here on this earth, he is using generosity to begin that transformation.

If you are ready for a life change, join us for one of our services this weekend!

Saturday evening worship: 6:00 pm
Sunday morning worship: 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.