It was a day of rejoicing and a day of challenge. Pictures of happy faces on Facebook the next day testify to the joyful mood that Sunday as we celebrated 30 years of the Lord’s goodness to us as a church. Yet there was challenge as well–challenge that came from God’s word. If MCBC is to continue thriving for another 30 years or more then the word that we heard ought to be taken to heart.
We wrapped up a mini-series entitled, “The 9 Marks of an MCBC Member,” a series of lectures which took us the whole month of June in our Sunday School and which dwelt on our functions as church members. The challenge for MCBC members is to grow more in faithful attendance, healthy devotions, cheerful giving, a holy life, godliness in family, church involvement, zealous evangelism, prudence in liberty and submission to oversight. May we all pray to this end.
We also had the privilege of listening to Pas. Brian T. Ellis as our guest speaker. Pastor Ellis was involved in many ways in the pre-history of MCBC having taught in a Bible study which marked the crude beginnings of the church. He was also the pastor of the core group which was sent to Moonwalk to begin afternoon services in 1985. Pas Ellis has been laboring in the Philippines for the past 50 years and is the pioneer of the Reformed Baptist movement in our land.
He preached to us from 1 Tim 3:14-15. He had three main points: (1) The church belongs to God, (2) It is the household of God, and, (3) It is the pillar and ground of the truth. Because the church belongs to the living God, we must worship and serve Him and not vain idols. Having been called out from darkness to light and formed into a local assembly by grace alone, the challenge is that the living God must always be the focus of our worship and our service.
Because the church is the household of God, we are to live for God and love the brethren. We belong to one spiritual family and God is our heavenly Father. We must show the world that we belong to His house by living lives worthy of our calling. We must show that we belong to one house by loving our brothers and sisters in Christ. The challenge is to remember that we belong to God and thus live holy lives and that we belong to each other and thus love each other fervently.
Because the church is the pillar and ground of the truth, the challenge is that MCBC members must be real and truthful and not be hypocrites. They must seek to know the truth and live the truth by reading their Bibles daily. MCBC preachers must preach only the truth and nothing else. Its members must zealously proclaim the gospel, continue praying for the unsaved, and persevere in inviting people to attend gospel preaching.
The challenge continued in the evening as Pas. Steve admonished us from Phil 2:16-18 to hold fast the word of life. This word of life is nothing but the gospel of salvation. This message has been faithfully preached in MCBC for 30 years. The summons for MCBC is to persevere in this word and not to fall away from the faith in spite of temptations, distractions, worldly and fleshly pleasures and even conflict.
The encouraging result is that there is a shared joy between the leaders and the members when everyone remains faithful to the end. There is a sense of accomplishment on the part of the leaders and the joy that arises from that is imparted to the members of the church. We want MCBC to have happy leaders and happy members.
May these challenges be taken to heart. If so, then we can expect greater growth for the coming years!
Sister Melba, representing the older batch of members, gives her testimony.
Brother Simon, representing the newer batch of members, gives his testimony.
Pas. Ellis preaches from 1 Tim 3:14-15
We had a good crowd.
It was Brenda’s birthday too that Sunday.
Even seniors queue for lunch.
Two pigs met their sad fate that Sunday.
Pas. Ellis with Ate Necy talk about Lubang memories with Mely who is from Lubang.
Old Picture #1: This was taken during a prayer meeting which I led at the Asis residence in Novaliches during the mid 90s.
Old Picture #2: The men had an impromptu overnight in Nasugbu. L to R: Rene, Pas Alex?, Jun?, Dennis, Lex?, Me, Mario and Boyet.
Old Picture #3: Dinner by the Lake in San Pablo City before returning to Manila. Except for Gerard and my family, all have left MCBC.
Old Picture #4: Mariella, Martha, Bridget, Melissa, Ingrid were still toddlers. All adults gone except me, Dennis and Acel.
Old Picture #5: Directing Lingap medical mission in Northern Mindanao. Cora, Tetch and Lalay have moved to other places.
We had visitors from Cooper too.
Martha is standing tall!
Sister Mel now has a wheelchair.
Here, unlike in the Facebook photo, Rosanna and Me are happy.
I’m pretending to be a senior but two would rather look away and deny!
Ice Cream direct from Canada. Thanks to Jonjay!
Nonoy and Jo were there too.
This is the 50s Batch.
This is the 80s batch; still alive and serving!
Happy 30th Anniversary