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Showing posts from May, 2014

THE PROBLEM WITH SELF-DEFINITION

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Do you ever get confused about what two sides stand for and which way to go? It’s all this or it’s all that. That person is a right-wing extremist or a left-wing liberal. He is a conservative, evangelical fundamentalist or he is an atheist. Optimist or pessimist… Sometimes we look for ways to describe ourselves and build allegiance to parties that most closely express our values.

We also do this with place. It’s the urban jungle or the serene countryside. It’s inner city or the suburbs. It’s Western civilization or Eastern.
Most people will tell you that they are an introvert or extrovert. The introvert is usually considered to be a shy, solitary and private person. The extrovert is usually outgoing, social and more talkative. While some are easily defined by these two categories, there is a third option. Meet the ‘ambivert’. This psychological classification is described as ‘a person having characteristics of both extrovert and introvert’.[i]In fact, it is likely that there are more am…

DUAL CITIZENSHIP

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What is New Jerusalem? If there is a new one, we need to understand something about the old Jerusalem. 
The ancient Jerusalem was the center of Israel’s life. It was the holy city where God’s Temple was built. 


This is the city where you could come to worship God and find the center of good government. It has been destroyed and rebuilt more than once by its enemies.
During a time of its destruction, the apostle John had a vision that revealed God’s idea of what will happen when the gap between Heaven and earth closes.

Revelation 21:21 Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. 2 I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. 3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them …

BUILDING ON THE RUINS OF CIVILIZATION

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Jesus spoke to his followers about the volatile environment they lived in. In their lifetime they would see Jerusalem fall in AD 70. They became exiles in their own city.


John 14:14 “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me. 2 My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you? 3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. 

The Messianic vision includes a new place to live. Where you are now is filled with troubles. There a better place to live and Jesus will return to take us there.
For now, we know that cities are built on the ruins of former dreams. One day we will all die and only the eternal blessings of God in our lives will be forwarded to subsequent generations. God is involved in the rise and fall of cities. We are a people that need to live in our cities expressing the Kingdom values of another cit…

SETTLERS IN THE WILDERNESS EMPIRE

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The history of the world is a story of cities that rise and fall. 
This is a brief history of the Ford City neighbourhood where New Song Church’s main campus is located. In the century of Henry Ford’s worker town we saw expansion and growth through immigration from Eastern Europe. At its peak, the Ford Motor Company had 14,000 employees at this location. The prosperity meant that the new citizens could build homes, churches, schools and a thriving business district.
Along with the growth came the typical issues with crime and social ills. The Chicago gangster Al Capone frequented our street during Prohibition when he illegally shipped whiskey across Detroit River. In winter months, he had an arrangement with a corrupt priest at Holy Rosary Catholic Church. A light in the belfry was used as a signal to let the gangsters know when they could drive across the ice to the Ford City docks.
In 1935 Ford City merged into the expanding city of Windsor. The year 1945 saw a 99-day workers strike w…