At FSBCA . . .
It's Not The Same
I see a lot of church newsletters from friends with
leadership positions in other states, and they are all
talking about typical autumn topics and using typical fall
visuals. I've seen children in jackets waiting for
school busses, an abundance of leaves turning color, grass
turning brown and growing dormant, and even frost on
pumpkins and football helmets.
I think they're rushing the season a bit, but for those of
us in the desert, they might as well be in a fantasy land.
Temperatures are still in the 100's, football players have
to worry more about heatstroke than frostbite, gravel stays
the same color year round, and a cactus never loses its
Still, though, church life changes in August and September,
and we have several exciting things to announce:
On September 1, our next basketball season
begins with a signup and tryout day! If you are
interested in being a coach, an assistant, a referee, a
timekeeper, or a helper in any way, we invite you to a
meeting this Sunday, August 19, at 12:15 in Building D.
Children and teens in grades 1-12 can sign up to play at
On September 9, we are offering our next
Financial Peace University at 6:00 pm. The
class lasts for 9 weeks and teaches you how to better manage
your money, how to get out of debt, how to write and live by
a budget, and how to save for emergencies and for the
future. Jon Bearup will teach this class.
On September 15, we begin Saturday evening
worship services at 6:00 pm. We're praying that this will
help us reach more people in our community for Christ!
If you want to serve as a greeter/usher, on our music team,
in the nursery, or on our tech team, email me at
On September 23, during the Sunday School
hour, we're offering a short-term (6 week) video series on
The Art of Marriage. It is a video-based and
discussion based series open to anyone from any class!
(We will follow it up in the spring with an 8 week series on
The Art of Parenting.) No sign-ups are
necessary. Just come and meet in the worship center!
It may not be cold or even cool. Shorts and sandals
are more common than jackets. The leaves aren't
turning. Frost is still a fantasy.
But we have some excellent ministries beginning in the next
See you Sunday!
It's good to be home! I wanted to first take and moment to
thank God for the many blessings and details he worked out
for that statement to be a reality. God's hand was
everywhere in the details of moving back to Arizona, right
down to allowing me the privilege to return to the staff of
FSBCA as the part time interim Children's Director! I also
want to thank Kenny Marslender for taking such good care of
our ministry to kids! Lastly, I want to thank our members
for such a warm welcome back "home."
A few things about my job have changed. First, I will be
working part time. I will be in the office on Tuesdays and
Thursdays from 8:00 am to 2:30 pm, and working from home on
Monday mornings. Second, I will be working with the
Kindergarten - 6th graders in my new role. We have a
fantastic Preschool Director: Rebecca Black to care for the
infants, toddlers, and preschoolers! My office has changed-
I'm just next door to my old office.
A few things have not changed! You can still email me
anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org
to volunteer, ask a question, share a ministry idea, share a
prayer request, set up a meeting, or leave some constructive
criticism. You can call or text me at 623.261.7824. And of
course, our purpose to REACH and TEACH children about the
love of Jesus never changes!
I am excited to be back and to get to work. Which is good
because there is always a lot of work to do! First thing on
the agenda is to kick off another fun and exciting year of
basketball to reach out to our community! We also will start
working with the Children's Choir for the Christmas Musical
Celebration. We will continue to offer Bible study on Sunday
mornings and of course Fall Festival will be here before we
know it. If any of that sounds like something you would like
to do call, text, or email me about how you can get
Sunday, I preached on 1 Timothy 2, and the second chapter of
that book ends with a discussion of women. The first
part deals with modesty in clothing and Paul reminding women
not to flaunt their wealth. That part of the chapter is
relatively easy to understand.
The next part of the chapter is more counter-cultural and
politically incorrect. It calls for women to allow men
to lead. And though many would disagree with Paul's
teaching (which, of course, comes from God), his meaning is
The final two verses are puzzling and much harder to
understand. Here is how they read:
14For Adam was formed first, then
Eve. And Adam was not the one deceived; it was the
woman who was deceived and became a sinner.
15But women will be saved through
childbearing--if they continue in faith, love and holiness
Let's try to make some sense of this. First, let me
explain what these verses do not mean. Verse 14 does
not mean that women are more guilty than men because
Eve sinned first. The Bible is extremely clear that we are all
sinners, and equally so. And verse 15 does not mean
that women achieve their salvation by having
babies. The Bible is clear that salvation is an act of
God's grace and is given to those who have faith in Jesus as
God's Son. We can't allow one or two difficult verses
to destroy the clear teaching of the Bible.
So what do these verses mean? Let me make some tentative
conclusions about an admittedly tough-to-interpret passage.
Verse 14 appears to reinforce the teaching that God intended
from the first for men to lead. ("Adam was formed
first . . . .") Then Paul points out that Eve
sinned first. At the same time, though, Adam abdicated
his leadership and allowed the sin to occur without a word.
We will never know what would have happened if Adam had
taken leadership and said, "Eve, remember, God said don't
eat the fruit. Let's not trust the serpent and go ask
God what this means." Instead, Adam was passive
and refused to lead.
Eve sinned and Adam followed. Both were guilty. Paul's
overall point to
Timothy is that God still intends for Adam to lead.
I'm not as sure that I can give you a confident
interpretation of verse 15, except to say that it is not
talking about the salvation of an individual woman and that
it clearly does not mean that a woman has to have a child to
receive salvation. My best guess is that the verse is
reference to Genesis 3:15, in which God promised Eve that it is
through her offspring that Jesus would come and bring
salvation. (This is not as farfetched as it seems. Verse 14
clearly refers to Genesis 2 and 3, the stories of the
Creation and the Fall. Verse 15 could easily
be part of that same reference. Paul already (in
verses 2:5-6) spoke of Jesus as the one and only mediator
between God and man.
Others see this as a general statement about women--your
unique contribution to life on Earth is that you give life
and nurture children. Others point out that the Greek
word here is best translated as "preserved" or "protected"
rather than "saved," so Paul is saying, "Women are protected
from the stigma of being the first to sin because of their
role in bringing children and the Savior through the birth
Students of the Bible understand that some verses are
challenging and difficult. We do our best, but we
don't always understand. As Mark Twain once said, "It
ain't those parts of the Bible that I can't understand that
bother me, it is the parts that I do understand."
After much prayer and planning, we are ready to start
Saturday night worship services on Saturday evening,
September 15, at 6:00 pm! We will need greeters,
security team members, musicians, ushers, and nursery
workers to make this work. Ultimately, we believe this
will help us reach more people. Let me know if you
want to serve! You can email me at
call me at 623.932.2723. And help us spread the word!
Groups for Teens!
This fall the teens are beginning some new small groups:
The Guys Small Group will meet at Ralph Castanedaís
home on Sunday afternoons beginning September 9 from
3:00-4:30 pm. Ralph will teach, "How To Be a Man."
Our Girls Small Group will meet at Becky
Pohto's home on Sunday afternoons from 3:15-4:45 pm
beginning September 9. Dawn Marslender will teach
"Faithful One: A Study of 1 & 2 Thessalonians."
The times for these two groups are offset so that parents
with both girls and guys can get them to the groups on time.
Each group begins with a snack and fellowship time followed
by the Bible study.
There are also opportunities to join our Youth Praise
Team and our Youth Choir. Meeting days
and times for these groups will be determined soon.
This is where discipleship happens. All teens are welcome!
The Fall Basketball Season is right around the corner!
Children and teens in grades 1-12 can pick-up a registration
form in our church office or register online.
Players, please plan to attend our registration/evaluation
event on Saturday, September 1, from 9:00 to 11:00 am. The
cost is $25 for 9 weeks of practice and 8 games, which is a
great value for a competitive, co-recreational league.
Everyone that signs up online prior to September 1 or at the
event will be guaranteed to be placed on a team. Donít miss
another exciting season!
Games begin September 15, children at 8:00 am and teens at
11:00 am. Questions? Contact Student Ministries Director
August 12 - Sunday (Make Up Day)
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