Category Archives: Light in the Darkness

Light In The Darkness: February 6, 2013

by Pastor David Grey

A Response to President Obama’s request for help from pastors…

Though I often endeavor to show how the precepts in Scripture are relevant to the most pressing issues of the day, I have no intention of turning this column into a vehicle for political activism.

I remain absolutely certain that the only hope for America is a repentant turning to the God of the Bible.

At the same time, something occurred recently that compels me to make an exception this week.

In a recent address to the nation, our president called upon all Americans to unite to pass his gun control initiatives.  Because he specifically called upon pastors (among others) to help, I feel compelled to make a public statement and believe it is right to do so.

Since this is the only public venue available for me to do so, I will use it.

I do find it interesting, by the way, that the same government that twists the words of the First Amendment regarding separation of church and state to mean the precise opposite of what is clearly written would now ask for help from pastors.

Nevertheless, I welcome the opportunity to respond.

What took place in Columbine, in Aurora, at Sandy Hook Elementary and other similar places is both tragic and reprehensible…but so is the “solution” to the problem proposed by our leaders.

There is a better way to address the problem and they all know it, for they themselves consistently use that better way both for themselves and for their own children.

I can only conclude, therefore, that they have some other agenda that has nothing to do with solving the problem created by a murderous few.

To read the rest of the column, pick up a copy of The Valley News or subscribe today by calling 598-6397

Light In The Darkness: January 30, 2013

by Pastor David Grey

“Hezekiah trusted in the Lord, the God of Israel. There was no one like him among all the kings of Judah, either before him or after him. He held fast to the Lord and did not cease to follow him; he kept the commands the Lord had given Moses. And the Lord was with him; he was successful in whatever he undertook.” — 2 Kings 18:5-7

In America today, there is a woeful shortage of exemplary leaders. The few excellent leaders are often rendered ineffective both by a media, which either ignores or demonizes them, and by the majority of leaders who are anything but models of faith and virtue.

From time to time, we see someone who appears to be above the mire of the new normal but then they too disappoint us, proving themselves to be no more worthy of our trust than the others. Sometimes we have placed our hope in them because we did not know what to look for in the first place. We thought them to be a cut above simply because they appeared righteous by comparison to the others.

Now, a man can be a decent civil leader (relatively speaking) without being a man of faith. If he leads according to the basic precepts of God’s Word and according to the just laws of the land, he may be a good leader even if he is not himself a man of true faith. We have had such leaders in the past and in times like these often find ourselves yearning for another.

The ideal leader, however, the one who brings great blessing upon the land and its people, is the leader like the one described in this passage in Second Kings, Hezekiah, king of Judah. Such a leader is one who trusts the Lord. He leans upon and has confidence in the God of the Bible, confident that His ways are best in every situation.

To read the rest of the column, pick up a copy of The Valley News or subscribe today by calling 598-6397

Light In The Darkness: January 23, 2013

by Pastor David Grey

“It is an abomination [to God and men] for kings to commit wickedness, for a throne is established and made secure by righteousness (moral and spiritual rectitude in every area and relation).” — Proverbs 16:12

The word “kings” as used in this passage refers in principle to all leaders of states and nations regardless of the actual title.  “Throne,” of course, refers to the position held by the one in governing authority. The phrase “commit wickedness” refers both to their personal immoral behavior and to the immoral behavior in governing.

Thus, when leaders behave and exercise their power in evil ways and for evil purposes it is an abomination to the Lord. Webster defines abomination as: “extreme disgust and hatred.” This is not something any thinking man would want to arouse in the all powerful God who is, Himself, the ruler over nations. Yet they do.

I am angry at decisions our government leaders have made in the past few years. This is especially true of the actions taken this week in both Albany and Washington. Having said that, I want to make it clear that it is not my purpose to focus upon my personal convictions regarding gun control or any other specific issue.

I want to focus upon something much greater. It is the underlying attitude of today’s  leaders that effects every one of us regardless of the position you take on any issue. The underlying attitude I refer to is their utter disregard for established polity and law.

To read the rest of the column, pick up a copy of The Valley News or subscribe today by calling 598-6397

Light In The Darkness: January 16, 2013

by Pastor David Grey

“For every time you eat this bread and drink this cup, you are representing and signifying and proclaiming the fact of the Lord’s death until He comes [again].” — 1 Corinthians 11:26 AMP

We come to the Lord’s Table to remember His death, the magnitude of its cost, and the reason He did it. At the same time, we must remember that His purpose was not simply to purchase a ticket out of hell for everyone who wants one. He came to provide life for those who would “hunger and thirst after righteousness.”

He died that those who believe might “have life and have it more abundantly.” Sadly, it would seem, many of us fail to experience that abundant life. This is not my personal observation, alone.

In his book, “The Ministry of Intercession: A Plea for More Prayer,” Andrew Murray wrote that “the great danger is living under the law and serving God in the strength of the flesh. With the great majority of Christians it appears to be the state in which they remain all their lives.  They do not know that all failure (to live a Godly life) can have but one cause: men seek to do themselves what grace alone can do in them… what grace most certainly will do.”

In other words, Rev. Murray is saying that many attempt to live the Christian life in our own strength rather than by walking in the Spirit. They do this  because they have not truly believed that one absolutely cannot live the Christian life apart from Him.

To read the rest of the column, pick up a copy of The Valley News or subscribe today by calling 598-6397

Light In The Darkness: January 9, 2013

by Pastor David Grey

“I want men everywhere to lift up holy hands in prayer” — 1 Timothy 2:8

I had a discussion recently with a good friend regarding the focus of believers at such a day as this. His focus was on the need for believers to be more involved in our governmental processes (at all levels).

I took the position that the greatest need is for believers to humble ourselves in repentance and prayer. A short time later the matter became more clear to me than ever before. I would like to share it with you.

A believer’s involvement in the social/political processes is no substitute for prayer. It could be argued, I suppose, that neither is prayer a substitute for involvement. However, it has been my observation (and conviction that I believe is supported in scripture) that humility and prayer before Almighty God is the prerequisite or foundation for any of our efforts to be effective. I have also noticed that working at most anything is easier than devoting oneself to consistent, devoted times of serious prayer; it being one of the most difficult tasks we will ever undertake.

Thus, I believe that we are far more inclined to work without praying than we are to pray without working and that is what I believe we have done far too often.

We can work without ever confronting those things in our lives that prevent God from blessing our efforts. In other words, we can work and labor without ever humbling ourselves before God and having our vessels cleaned.

Few can pray for very long without hearing the Spirit confronting things in our lives that need to change. And so, we work because it is easier than serious humility and prayer.

To read the rest of the column, pick up a copy of The Valley News or subscribe today by calling 598-6397

Light In The Darkness: January 2, 2013

by Pastor David Grey

“We know that the Son of God has come, and he has given us understanding so that we can know the true God…He is the only true God, and he is eternal life.” — 1 John 5:20

Well, our Christmas celebrations are over (for those of us who celebrate Christmas and not ‘happy holidays’ or some other Christ-less substitute).

We have rejoiced once again in the coming of God as a babe born to a virgin. We have remembered the fulfillment of prophecies made and the promises that the Father kept that night so long ago in Bethlehem.

Now, as we enter the new year, it is good to ponder the ramification of those events for us today, for they are most certainly crucial to us all.

The Messiah did not come to earth so that we could have an annual celebration of miracles and angels; of magi and shepherds and deliverance from an evil king.

The Son of God became the Son of Man that we might know the Father’s forgiveness and have eternal life, which John tells us, “is in His Son.” (1 John 5:20). This eternal life is in the Son because as the focus verse of this column says, he, himself is, “eternal life.”

There is no forgiveness of sin and there is no eternal life apart from him. There is no life apart from our being “in Christ.”

Forgiveness and life do not come simply through our knowing about him or even through being a great fan of his. They certainly do not come to those who do not even believe they need a savior.

To read the rest of the column, pick up a copy of The Valley News or subscribe today by calling 598-6397

Forgiveness

by Pastor David Grey

“Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” — Colossians 3:13-14

More than 30 times in the New Testament we are told to forgive one another’s trespasses and offenses. But there is one verse in scripture that reveals just how crucial it is that we obey this command.

It is verse 6 of Matthew 15: “If you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.”

Does God really mean that His forgiving me is contingent upon my forgiving others? The answer is “yes, He does.”

That was the whole point of the parable of the debtor Jesus told in Matthew 18. You might remember the story. A man who owed the king more than he could ever repay, begged for mercy and had his debt forgiven.

Yet that same man demanded that someone who owed him far, far less pay back every penny.

When the king heard about it he, “called the servant in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ In anger his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed.”

Now in case someone would fail to understand clearly what this parable meant, Jesus concluded, saying, “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart.”

To read the rest of the column, pick up a copy of The Valley News or subscribe today by calling 598-6397

Jesus’ incarnation

by Pastor David Grey

“Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,  but made himself nothing, taking the very nature of a servant, being made in human likeness.” — Philippians 2:6

The birth of Messiah, born in Bethlehem to the virgin Mary by the Holy Spirit, gave mankind a baby like no other — a baby who was both fully God and fully man. Incarnation. Though the word does not appear in scripture, it comes from two Latin words, “in” and “caro” (which means flesh). Together they mean “clothed in flesh.” This is exactly what the passage in Philippians says…that God the Son came in flesh.

C.S. Lewis wrote, “The Incarnation, when God became man, was the central event in the very history of the world…the thing that the whole story has been about.”

How true. From the vantage point of God who created all things; who is king of kings and lord of lords, all of history hinges on this pivotal point of the incarnation. The hinge of history is the time Jesus lived and walked among us in the flesh.

Even our calendar is arranged in acknowledgment. Everything prior to the incarnation is referred to as BC (before Christ) and everything following His birth is known as AD, Anno Domini, the Year of our Lord.

Without the incarnation of God, Himself, the whole story of mankind,  our separation from God and our own inability to ever be restored, has an inconceivably sad ending.

To read the rest of the column, pick up the latest copy of The Valley News. You may also subscribe to the paper by calling 598-6397