November 13, 2005
Philippians 3:13, 14
Today marks 21 years since the beginning of Bible Fellowship Baptist Church. In July of 1984, I came to Sacramento with my wife and my daughter for the purpose of establishing a local, independent Baptist church.
In November of the same year, we held our first service in a school cafeteria located here in Rancho Cordova. We had about 30 people in that service--many were my family and friends, only 10 were from the local area.
Over these last 21 years we have enjoyed many wonderful blessings; and we've also experienced many hardships and trials along the way:
a. We have witnessed the ups and downs of church membership. At one time our church was comprised of 75% military families. On September of 1993, Mather Air Force Base closed its doors, causing us to lose all of those wonderful people.
1) God, in His plan, brought new folks to the church. Many were introduced to Christ through our ministry, some transferred into the area, and then there were those who were simply looking for a strong church. So, today, we remember 21 years of ministry.
3. Now it is time to look to the future; it's time to move forward. And as we move forward, there are certain things that will be important to us:
I. GOD'S HOLY WORD
A. God's Word will always sustain us
1. This church was built upon the Bible--"Bible Fellowship Baptist Church." Our motto comes from Phil. 2:16, "Holding for the Word of Life." We have taught this Book, and we have tried to live by this Book...it has been the thing that has sustained us and our church throughout all the years.
2. In his final hours, that great champion of the faith, the Apostle Paul, desired more than anything else, to have his Bible with him. The Word of God had been his companion for many years. When he was in prison, He told Timothy, "When thou comest, bring with thee, the books, but especially the parchments (Bible)" (2 Tim. 4:13). ...
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