16 Jan 2017

Narrow door for the saved

On January 15 at the Sunday service of “Philadelphia” church in Izhevsk the church blessed two families: firstly, they congratulated and prayed for the family of Pavel and Anna Zhelnovakovs, who had the 35th wedding anniversary; secondly, the church prayed for Anya – a newborn daughter of Aleksey and Maria Sokolovs, a young church ministers family.

At the second service Konstantin Gogolev talked about tithing. For the first time the Bible speaks of the tithe in the Old Testament when Abraham gave a tenth part of all his wealth to the priest of God Most High (Genesis 14:17-23). It was long before the commandment about the tithe had become a part of the Law of Moses (Leviticus 27:30-31). He did this because of gratitude to God, he acknowledged God to be the Source of all the good in his life. Referring to the New Testament we can see that Christ didn’t cancel the commandment about tithing: «Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You give a tenth of your spices—mint, dill and cumin. But you have neglected the more important matters of the law—justice, mercy and faithfulness. You should have practiced the latter, without neglecting the former» (Matthew 23:23) . During the times of the early church people recognized God’s power in their lives so that they gave everything they had to spread the Kingdom of God (Acts 4:34-37). Konstantin concluded that as a matter of fact tithing is a starting point of beneficence for a believing, loving and merciful heart.

In the Russian Church of Christians of Evangelic Faith the year 2017 was declared as a “The Year of Evangelism”. According to this Senior pastor of “Philadelphia” church in Izhevsk Pavel Zhelnovakov addressed to the church members with the sermon about the part of Christians in the question of salvation of unbelievers. The key Bible passage was the answer of Christ in the following verses: «Someone asked him, “Lord, are only a few people going to be saved?” He said to them, “Make every effort to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to» (Luke 13:23). Talking of the narrow door Jesus was likely to mean that believers whose lives are really renewed are called to discipline their lives to become more and more perfect in terms of their tempers, life styles and relationships.  This is the only way how the unbelieving world can see the light of Christ’s gospel. The pastor emphasized that the true Bible teaching doesn’t say that the question of saving a person is a question of his destiny that will be solved, notwithstanding our interference. No, it is primarily the question of choice: on the one hand, of believers to show a Christian life style and the Gospel, and, on the other hand, of unbelievers to accept or reject the Gospel. The task of God’s people is to show how God’s forgiveness can change and restore people’s lives. But to do this Christians should, firstly, keep in their hearts the revelations about the reality of eternity and that it can be with or without God; that our God’s love to all the people is eternal and unchangeable; that every person has a limited amount of time to make the fateful decision; and that we have our personal responsibility for our and someone’s salvation. Secondly, it is impossible to save others if one doesn’t reject the destroying action of two dreadful shortages: indifference and carelessness in questions of saving other’s lives. The pastor announced that on Thursday at the prayer service the church will pray for unbelieving relatives and friends. He offered the church members to write down on a sheet of paper the names of those people for whose salvation they are ready to walk through the narrow door.

Dilyara Porseva


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20 Jan 2017
The Fourth Conference for the RCCEF Children’s Ministry servants and coordinators from Volga and Ural Federal Districts will be held in Izhevsk on February 24-25

10 Jan 2017
A Christmas concert held in “Philadelphia” church in Izhevsk