Monday, January 20, 2014

Video Changes On The Way

Good Monday Morning To You1

I have some exciting news to share with you concerning our video ministry. We realize that sitting in front of a computer screen watching a video is difficult; especially when the video is 30 minutes in length. For that reason, we have decided to change the way the videos are taped. We will now be offering a shorter, ten minute or so synopsis of the morning message. You will still get the entire sermon outline delivered to you by video, but it will just be the highlights. That change will take place in one week. We were not able to record yesterday due to technical difficulties, but we know what was wrong and it has been corrected. My thanks to Jim and Gwen Cook for their dedicated service to our video ministry. Without them, it likely would not happen. In next week’s Monday Morning Blog, we will let you know more.

Yesterday at Friendship Harmony I began a two part message titled, God’s 2x4’s. We did a comparison on the lumber that was used in building the frame for the wilderness tabernacle, with the lumber used in building God’s church. The 2x4’s God uses is believers. If you have been saved, you are one of those boards. The notes are below. Next week we will give you a ten minute “short version” of parts one and two. I hope the notes are a blessing to you.

God’s 2x4’s ©
Deut. 8:2,16
By Victor Cooper

Intro: A good builder will select good lumber for his building. When God ordered the building of the wilderness tabernacle, everything had to be done according to His perfect plan. As God began to build His church, He did not have much to start with, but He was able to take what He had and make it into something useful. Today and next week we will examine how God did it, and the role we play.

I. The boards had to be cut down.
A. The boards for the tabernacle had to be of a certain kind; shittim wood.
B. The boards for God’s church had to be of a certain kind; humbled.
C. God led the children of Israel through the wilderness to humble them.
D. The 2x4’s God had to choose from were in pretty bad shape. Luke 5:32 I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

II. The boards had to be dried out.
A. Uncured lumber can, and generally will warp and twist as it dries.
B. After they dried, they were set aside for use.
C. Being set aside is called being sanctified.
D. The boards in God’s church are sanctified boards.
1 Cor. 6:11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.
1. God’s boards are set aside to:
(a) love Him. Deut. 6:5 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.
(b) serve Him.
Hebrews 12:28 Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:
(c.) worship Him. Luke 4:8 And Jesus answered and said … Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve.

Thank you for being such a faithful reader of this Monday Morning Blog. It is written to (I hope) be a blessing and an encouragement to you. If it does, will you tell others about it? If not, please e-mail me and let me know your concerns. That e-address is Good, constructive criticism is always appreciated! Have a good and a safe week wherever you are, and I’ll see you next Monday Morning With Pastor Vic!!!


Sunday, January 12, 2014

Never Forsaken

Good Monday Morning To You!

I always count it a privilege to visit with you like this. As I have said before, I wish I could call on each of you face to face. With some of you I can. I have ten visits scheduled so far this week, and I am looking forward to being in each home. Most of you though, live many miles away, so this will have to do for now. In this blog I do all the talking, but I always enjoy hearing from you as well. A good visit features both sides talking. Please feel free to e-mail me if you’d like to talk. If you prefer a phone visit, e-mail your number and I’ll call you. Be sure to let me know what would be the best time to call. For 42 years I have had the honor of being in the ministry. During that time I have met, and gotten to know some of the finest Christian people who have ever walked this earth. I am thinking of several at this time, but if I start naming names, I fear I’d leave someone out and I wouldn’t want to do that.

We had a great service at church yesterday. Dustin Jenkins came from Tennessee to minister to us in song. His singing was inspiring, uplifting, and glorified the Lord Jesus Christ. Dustin travels and sings professionally, and our church was so blessed to have him. I am proud to count him as a friend. Many have asked if he will be returning next year. We will talk with him about that when he returns home and has the opportunity to look at his 2015 schedule.

There will be no video this week. As I mentioned, Dustin is a touring professional, so we did not tape due to possible copyright infringements. I did, however, preach a short message from Isaiah 14:1 which says, “For the Lord will have mercy on Jacob, and will yet choose Israel, and set them in their own land: and the strangers shall be joined with them, and they shall cleave to the house of Jacob.”

The southern kingdom of Judah and Benjamin were in captivity in Babylon. The large majority of us do not fully understand what that would be like. We have never been physically enslaved. Some of you who are reading outside the United States might know, but most do not. The bottom line is this: they felt abandoned by, and forsaken by God. Have you ever felt like that? Have you ever felt like God has led you out into a hot, dry, desert, then walked off stranding you there? If that is true, it could be real, or simply perceived, but you must ask your self three questions.

The first is, “Why am I here?” Judah was in bondage because she had turned her back on God. He was using the bondage as corrective punishment. It was punishment because they had rebelled against God, but it was also corrective. God used it to bring them back to a right relationship with Him. Is He perhaps doing that for you? Remember, everything God does He does for a reason. God never acts just for the fun of it. God never punishes because He is a cosmic bully. God’s reasons are always in the best interest of His people.

The second question to ask yourself is, “What is God teaching me?” Judah was being taught what they should have remembered all along: to trust, serve, and love God. When you can come to terms with the why am I here question, the “what is God teaching me” is easy. When you see what it is God wants you to learn --- learn! The quicker you learn the lesson, the quicker the bondage ceases. God had to totally break Judah’s stubborn will, but break it He did.

The final question can be answered when the light bulb comes on in your head and you find yourself saying, “Now I get it!” The last question is, “If God is teaching me, then has He really abandoned me?” You will already know the answer: no, He hasn’t. Our verse in Isaiah 14:1 teaches that God will have mercy on His people. He will not forget them, nor will He forsake them. Didn’t God tell Joshua in Joshua 1:5, …I will not fail thee nor forsake thee?” God has never abandoned His people and He is not going to start now. Be encouraged if God has led you into what you feel is a place of bondage. He is right there with you.

May the Lord bless your upcoming week. Remember what I said earlier. If you ever want to visit, even if by e-mail or phone, please let me hear from you. My e-mail address is Even if you just write to say “hello,” I’ll be glad to hear from you. I’ll see you next Monday Morning With Pastor Vic!!!


Sunday, January 5, 2014


Good Monday Morning To You!!

As I find myself inching closer and closer to another birthday, I can’t help thinking back to younger days. For some reason, I have been thinking about the time I fell into a pond in a park in Cincinnati. The pond had a brick wall surrounding it about 24 inches high. People would sit on the wall and enjoy the beauty of the park. I was about five years old at the time, and I was on the wall running on top of it. I remember hearing my mom tell me to get down because I might fall, when suddenly she was right --- splash! I fell in. The pond was probably only about three feet deep, but to a skinny little kid (yes Bill Wolfe, I was skinny once) it was as deep as an ocean. It was a man made pond with a concrete bottom. There were large goldfish swimming around me, and I remember the quiet. There was not a sound - it was so peaceful. My entire time in the water probably only lasted a few seconds, but I can recall looking up where I noticed a man sticking his hand into the water. The man pulled me out and put me on dry ground. Although I remembered the underwater excursion to be pleasant, it left me with a fear of the water which I carry with me to this day. I cannot stand the thought of my head being under water. I am not bothered by a shower, but being in any body of water where I can go under terrifies me.

Remember, I am a Baptist. I have been a Baptist since birth, so I knew how they planned to baptize me. Believe me, it almost made a Presbyterian out of me! I believe God has a purpose in all things, and I always wondered what good could ever come from being so afraid of the water. In 1977 I learned the answer. I was serving as pastor at a church in Grant County, Kentucky where three boys, all brothers, were saved. Two of the three were anxious to be baptized, but the middle brother wanted nothing to do with it. I called him aside and asked him why. He told me he was afraid of the water and didn’t want his head to go under. I told him I knew exactly what he was talking about, and that I too shared his fear. I asked him if he would trust me. I told him it would be very fast and that I would not let him go. He looked up at me and said, “I trust you. You understand.” The boy was baptized along with his brothers, and he was glad he was. I’m glad the LORD used me to help that young man work his way through his fear. I do not know if the young man, now in his late 40’s, ever got over his fear of the water, but I imagine he has not. He was, however, able to honor God, just as I was, and follow the Lord in baptism.

What an awesome day we had at Friendship Harmony yesterday! Our attendance was terrific with the addition of many of our winter visitors. More will be arriving within the next few weeks, and it is always good to see them. One lady, Eleanor McDonnel, has graciously agreed to lead our congregational singing. She is a wonderful singer, and we are so blessed to have her and Alan with us. These fine folks are from Canada.

Speaking of singers, this coming Sunday, January 12, Dustin Jenkins, from Nashville, Tennessee will be singing for us. Dustin will be singing in the 10:00 a.m. service. If you are anywhere in the area, be sure to come by and join us. After the service, we will enjoy a carry in fellowship meal. The church will provide pulled pork bar-b-que, and each of us will carry in something to make for a great meal. I hope you can be with us.

The sermon notes are below, and you can view the video on Tuesday. To watch it, go to The video should be posted by Tuesday morning. Remember, you do not need a Facebook account to see the video. Here are the notes.

Compared With The Tabernacle ©
Numbers 9:15,16
By Victor Cooper

Intro: From the tabernacle, Israel’s house of worship in their wilderness journey, we see a picture of believers as tabernacles. The question becomes, in what condition is the tabernacle?

I. The tabernacle was completed. Exodus 39:32 Thus was all the work of the tabernacle of the tent of the congregation finished: and the children of Israel did according to all that the Lord commanded Moses, so did they.
A. God doesn’t half do anything; He completes!
Philip. 1:6 Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:
B. Salvation was the beginning.
1. This first step cannot be avoided. God will absolutely not live in the heart of an unsaved individual.
Numbers 1:51b …And when the tabernacle is to be pitched, the Levites shall set it up: and the stranger that cometh nigh shall be put to death.
C. Salvation is the first part of the sanctification process. Salvation says an individual has been saved from sin’s penalty.

II. The tabernacle was dedicated.
Numbers 7:88b-89 …This was the dedication of the altar, after that it was anointed. [89] And when Moses was gone into the tabernacle of the congregation to speak with him, then he heard the voice of one speaking unto him from off the mercy seat that was upon the ark of testimony, from between the two cherubims: and he spake unto him.
A. This life is a believer’s dedication.
Numbers chapter 7 has 89 verses which describe in detail the process of the dedication of the tabernacle It was explicate.
B. This is the second part of sanctification. Dedication says a saved individual is being saved by God’s power.
C. The amount of power sin has over a believer speaks volumes about his/her level of dedication.
1. Sin has all the power it’s given.

III. The tabernacle was filled by God’s presence.
Exodus 40:34-35 Then a cloud covered the tent of the congregation, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. [35] And Moses was not able to enter into the tent of the congregation, because the cloud abode thereon, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle.
A. God’s presence was so real that Moses could not enter the tabernacle.
B. In your flesh, you could never stand in God’s presence. 2 Corinthians 5:21
1. On the cross, Jesus was, “made to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.”
2. When Jesus was made to be sin, God turned His back on the sight. In God’s holiness, He cannot look upon sin.
C. The third and final part of sanctification is called, “glorification.” It says a believer will be saved from sin’s presence.
1. Glorification comes when the believer enters into Heaven
2. This final part cannot be achieved without parts one and two are accomplished in the proper order.

Have a good and a safe week. If you will be traveling the roads to get here to southwest, Florida, please be careful. The interstates will be loaded with other like minded people. If you are one of our faithful readers who are staying put this winter, thank you for being a part of Friendship Harmony through this blog and the video ministry. If the blog and video is a blessing to you, be sure to tell others about us. Take care of yourself, and I pray 2014 holds nothing but good things for you and your family.

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