Monday, October 31, 2011

The Strong Tower

Good Monday Morning To You!!!

Yesterday at Friendship Harmony, I gave a sermon illustration telling about an incident when my son's dog, Bubba, ran off. We were watching him while Kevin was in north Florida on business. I was using him as an illustration of the words from Hebrews 11:6 (see notes below) concerning “diligently seeking.” I mentioned that in looking for him, I drove up and down the streets in our neighborhood calling out his name. I told about how when “diligently seeking”, you keep at it until what you are seeking is found. What I failed to tell them was, as Paul Harvey used to say, “the rest of the story.” I just preached the finest sermon of my long and illustrious career, with points of theology worthy of Charles Haddon Spurgeon or maybe even Paul himself, and when it's over what did they ask? “Did you ever find Bubba?” Alright, you've got me on this one. Yes, I found Bubba in a neighbor's yard two blocks away. I don't know who was happier to see who, Bubba or me. Anyway, I didn't scold him. I put him into the backseat of the car and delivered him safely home. (I can see another sermon illustration here.) Now whenever either of our miniature schnauzers go out, it is never without the leash. If one tries to run off now, the best they can hope for is 16 feet. One more episode like the other day, and my heart will surely fail!

Yesterday's message was called, “That Strong Tower' from Proverbs 18:10; “The name of the Lord is a strong tower: the righteous runneth into it, and is safe.” Note, the righteous, those right with God, run into it, not simply to it. There is a big difference in running into something verses running to something. The sermon notes below will go into more detail concerning the difference. Some translation speak of running to His name, but the correct rendering is running into His name --- big difference. The goal of the message was to guide us as to how we can run into His name. It is a three point sermon with each point beginning with the letter “C.” Hopefully, that will help us remember better. Below are those notes. Feel free to use them in your personal Bible study. Other preachers and teachers are free to use them as well, I'd be honored.

That Name Of Strength
Proverbs 18:10
By Victor Cooper

Intro: Solomon tells us the name of the LORD is a place of strength and safety. Those who are right with God are advised to run into it. The question is, “How?”
Note: run into it; i.e. you run to where it encompasses you.
1. You run into it, not to it as some translations suggest.
Example: You are running to catch your bus. You get right up to it as it pulls away. That’s running to it. OR, you are running to catch your bus and you get in just before the driver closes the door. That’s running into it.

You run into the name of the LORD by:

I. calling upon the name of the LORD.
1 Cor. 1:2 Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:

A. To call upon the name of the LORD you must believe He is interested in you.
Hebrews 11:6 But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
B. Calling on His name is not a magical incantation.
1. That’s called religion; i.e. man’s way to God. Remember: God is not religious; He is that strong tower!

2. You are a child of God, not Merlin the magician.

II. confessing His name. 2 Chron. 6:24 And if thy people Israel be put to the worse before the enemy, because they have sinned against thee; and shall return and confess thy name, and pray and make supplication before thee in this house;
Matthew 10:32 Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is in heaven.
A. Confess > Heb yadah’> to hold out the hand
example: (allow congregation to stand and demonstrate)
B. Confess> Gk homolog’eo> to acknowledge
C. Both are similar.
1. Yadah is physical, but it must begin with homologeo; acknowledging with the heart and mind.

III. citing the name of the LORD; ie to publishing His name. Genesis 4:26 (YLT) And to Seth, to him also a son hath been born, and he calleth his name Enos; then a beginning was made of preaching in the name of Jehovah.
A. Men made His name known.
B. Men called themselves by the name of the LORD. By faith, they identified themselves with Him.
C. The sons of men (Cain) proclaimed that since God had created the stars and celestial bodies, and had set them in their place, it was right to honor and worship them.
1. This was the birth of idolatry.
D. The sons of God (Seth) proclaimed the worship of the Creator exclusively, not the


Conclusion: To run into the name of the Lord, you must call upon His name, confess His name, and cite His name. That guarantees you entrance into that Strong Tower.

Some of our winter visitors have returned, while others will be here shortly. For those of you who have just arrived, “Welcome Back.” For those who will soon be joining us, have a safe trip down and we look forward to seeing you soon. Let me also express my gratitude to our full timers. Without you, Friendship Harmony Baptist Church could not exist. Your dedication and loyalty to this young Church is deeply appreciated. Be safe and healthy this week, and I’ll see you next Monday Morning With Pastor Vic!!!


Monday, October 24, 2011

"What Were You Thinking?"

Good Monday Morning To You.

I trust you have had a good week since we last visited. Our snowbirds are beginning their southerly migration. We are always glad to see them return because we miss the fellowship with them during the summer. If there could really be a Jeanie in a bottle that could grant wishes, mine would be for year round fellowship with all our winter friends. I suppose that is selfish of me, but I really enjoy the time spent with them. Any of you folk that are getting ready to head south, have a safe trip and we'll see you soon!

Yesterday's service at Friendship Harmony was very good. Our people really enjoy being together and worshiping as a group. Our Sunday School is a blessing, our small groups are an absolute gift from God, and our services are always uplifting. We currently have four small groups meeting. They are our ladies group which meets monthly, our men's group which also meets monthly, our group dedicated to studying the Hebrew roots of Christianity, which meets weekly, and our fellowship and recreation group which meets in season. Hopefully, our Tuesday Morning Ladies Bible Study group can resume soon. This group is led by Sister Brenda Conley who is currently experiencing some medical issues. Brenda is unable to conduct the group, but with a return to good health could conceivably resume in the future.

Yesterday's message was one I had preached back in 2006. It is very rare when I reprise a message, but I felt the leadership of the LORD to do so. This message answers a question I want to ask Adam when I meet him in Heaven. I will ask him, “Adam, what were you thinking?” We saw from Scripture that Adam had it all. The earth was his home. God had given him dominion over it as well as the creatures inhabiting it with him. God gave him all the provisions he would ever need and a companion to share it with. Adam enjoyed fellowship with God, yet he wanted more. He wanted to be like God. He wanted to please his mate. He believed God was withholding good from him. Basically, he was selfish. It had come down to what he wanted verses what God wanted. The end result of his selfishness was rebellion. Selfishness always leads to sin. It is said that multi-billionaire J. Paul Getty was asked what possibly could a man of his immense wealth want. His purported answer was, “One dollar more.” Selfishness says, “I can never be satisfied.” Christian obedience says, “Jesus is enough for me.”

Next week, the LORD willing, I'll be preaching “That Glorious Name.” It is a new message that is even now in the early phases of the sermonizing process. Pray for that message, and if you're in the area, try to be with us. We'd be pleased if you would.

I'll see you next Monday Morning With Pastor Vic!!!


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Headed For Heaven

Good Monday Morning To You,

Some of you are wondering where your Pastor Vic blog was last week. Bess and I along with Bill and Patty Wolfe left after church last Sunday morning to attend a two day Celebration for mature and senior adults at the First Baptist Church of Central Florida. We heard outstanding preaching by Junior Hill and Clayton Clorer, and superb music. Dino Kartsanakis played piano, and he is literally a concert master. If you like good piano music, go and purchase some of his cd's. Also, please add Dino and his family to your prayer list. They lost their home in last years tornado that ripped through Missouri. If you remember the movie, Chariots Of Fire, the theme song was played by Dino. He is a great showman, and a very nice man. The Taylor Family sang as well as Ernie Haas and his group, Signature Sound. I also promised Ernie we would be praying for him as his knee is going to have to be replaced. I received a tremendous blessing from our worship leader for the conference, David Crain. He had us singing, laughing, and crying. What a blessing! If you ever get the chance to see him in person, do so. Pastor Vic promises you will receive a blessing. Next year's event will be on October 8 & 9. I hope Bess and I can go, and I'd like to take as many of you as I can. As time gets closer, I'll share the information with you.

Yesterday, our associate Pastor, Bob Felber preached. He is a super preacher and one of the most humble men I know. It is indeed my pleasure to be serving with him. He preached a message titled, Headed For Heaven from 1 Peter 1:3-5. Bro. Bob's message wasn't so much about what Heaven is like (but he touched on it), but rather he spoke about the road to it He presented a tremendous lesson on the Doctrine of Sanctification. He reminded us that we have been saved from sin's penalty, we are being saved from sin's power, and that at the moment of death, we will be saved from sin's presence. Bob fed us meat from God's word.

After the service, the ladies fed us a bean and cornbread dinner. As usual, they prepared a fine meal. They tell me that next month wev will be having a Mexican Fiesta. If you like food from south of the border, come be with us. That date will be the second Sunday, which is November 13. Our meals always preceed our Sunday Morning service.

Last Sunday, I finished my sermon series about spiritual Cardiology. The message was titled Treating Spiritual Heart Disease. The notes are below for your personal study.

Treating Spiritual Heart Disease
Luke 6:43-45

Sermon Series: Spiritual Cardiology By Victor Cooper
(Sub points)

(Main Points from the Preach The Word Commentary)

When treating the spiritual heart, treat it:

The spiritual cardiologist must have his/her heart right.
The spiritual cardiologist recognizes that he/she has experienced sin before God.
The spiritual cardiologist understands that his/her own heart is, “... deceitful above all things.” (Jeremiah 17:9)

The spiritual cardiologist must pray for him/her own self as well as the patient.

The spiritual cardiologist must treat the heart condition as, “thus saith the LORD.” 2 Tim. 3:16-17 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: [17] That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

The spiritual cardiologist must love his/her patient.
The spiritual cardiologist understands the difference between judgement, and judgementalism. The Preach The Word Commentary says, “Judgmentalism is rooted in ill will, while judgment has the best interests of the other person in mind. Judging others must be an act of love for God and his moral revelation, and also an act of love for the sinner, giving him the truth for his ultimate good.

The spiritual cardiologist understands that mercy is what Jesus is all about. Remember: mercy is not receiving from Jesus that which you deserve. Luke 6:36 Be ye therefore merciful, as your Father also is merciful.
The spiritual cardiologist understands that he/she must exemplify Jesus.)

For those of you interested in deeper Bible study, I have discovered a website you might be interested in. It is This site is provided by Lifeway, and is easy to use. The site is free, but there are expansions that can be purchased. Check it out and let me know what you think.

My thanks goes out to the many of you who have asked about my health. I am now two full weeks into my cardiac rehab, and I am feeling better than I have in a long, long time. I have more stamina, and I am feeling much stronger. I appreciate your prayers. Keep yourself healthy and strong so that I can see you next Monday Morning With Pastor Vic.


Monday, October 3, 2011

News From Pastor Vic

Good Monday Morning To You!

Cooler weather has come to us here in Florida. The morning temps are in the low 70's and daytime highs in the mid to upper 80's. The humidity is down, and it simply feels good outside. How is your weather? From what I here, it is a bit cooler up north. Kevin, my trucker son, saw ice on the roads last week in Montana. Fall has arrived, and that means many of our winter visitors are getting ready to migrate south for the winter. For those of you coming down, please be safe on the roads; its a jungle out there.

Last Friday I started my cardiac rehab at Cape Coral Hospital. I did one hour of various exercises. When I was finished, I felt like I had trained with the Cincinnati Bengals. I could hardly walk out of the building. I didn't realize I was so out of shape! I remember when I was training with the Norwood High School Baseball team back in '72. I was in tip top shape then. I'll never get back to where I was at age 17, but they tell me, I will strengthen over the course of these rehab sessions. The hardest thing for me was the treadmill. I walked at one mile per hour for a total of just over four minutes. They told me that wasn't bad for a rookie. The lady next to me was going at an extremely faster clip, and had already done ten minutes. It is not so much that I mind being bested by a woman, but she looked to be about 112 years old. All I can say is, “Go granny, go granny, go granny go!”

Last Wednesday a group of us were privileged to visit the Beth Yeshua Messianic Synagogue for their Rosh Hashanah service. Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish equivalent of our New Year's day. It is the beginning of their civil new year. It was a very good service, and our people enjoyed it tremendously. This coming Friday, we have been invited to come and observe Yom Kippur with them. Yom Kippur is also known as the day of atonement, and for the Jews, this is a major holiday. It is not like our Easter, but it has that kind of importance. Next Monday morning, I'll let you know more about that service.

As you have heard me say many times before, yesterday was another great day at Friendship Harmony. I have been preaching a series of sermons on Spiritual Cardiology. We have looked at what a sinner's heart looks like and what a backslider's heart looks like. Yesterday we looked at what a good heart looks like. Next Monday morning I'll share those notes with you. It seems I have misplaced the memory stick I used to store them. These “senior moments” are starting to get ridiculous. I wish I could have my secretary Teri back. She did all my remembering for me. She's a great christian lady and I miss her both personally and professionally. If I find it before next week, I'll send a mid week edition with those notes.

Until then, have a good week and I'll see you Next Monday Morning With Pastor Vic!