Light and Life Community Chapel

Last Sunday we were staying in a cottage in the Bruce Peninsula and visited Light and Life Community Chapel, Tobermory.

Tobermory Church Location: Tobermory (Bruce Peninsula)
Address: 7347 Hwy 6, ON, Canada
Google map: link to map
Sunday Meeting: 9:30am
Pastor: Jerry Clubine
Email: [email protected]
Phone: (519) 596-2939
Cell: (519) 379-1689
Affiliation: PAOC
Website: lightandlifecommunitychapel.nexo.com/

The Pastor, Jerry Clubine, was preaching on Matthew 5:3, “Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” He pointed out that poverty is usually considered a bad thing, so how can Jesus say it is blessed?

The answer is in how we define what it means to be poor in spirit. What Jesus is talking about is a recognition that we do not have what we need by ourselves, but need God to give us a “download” of his spiritual filling. The poverty is a recognition of need.

I think this was an excellent explanation of the text, but I had a couple of thoughts about it afterwards that I would liked to have been able to discuss with Jerry.

  1. The context in Matthew 5 is of two stages to the blessings—e.g. v.4: mourning then comforted, and v.5: hungry then filled. This suggests that we are not intended to remain in spiritual poverty, but having recognized our need (and come to Jesus) we receive the wealth of the kingdom. The primary application of this would be to the non-Christian who comes to Christ and is saved. However the need for Jesus does not end at salvation.
  2. There is a similar verse in Revelation 3:17 where those in the church in Laodicea are rebuked because they think they are rich etc., but in fact are poor. Then in v.18 Jesus freely offers them the gift of his riches. Here the application seems to be to believers who are in a very bad spiritual state.

Taken together, these two passages would seem to suggest that Christians can live in spiritual poverty, even though Christ’s wealth is available to them. Their problem is thinking that they have a wealth independent of Christ. The truly rich Christian is one who lives in recognition of total dependence on the riches of Christ.

agreement

Hi Andrew,

Thanks for sending me this link. I happen to agree with the two points in your blog. Although my intension over the coming Sunday AM's is to look at each 'blessing' separately, I likely should've pointed out the 'balancing act' of Matt 5. Secondly, without quoting chapter and verse as you have, I had hoped to convey a similar thought (as you have here), "The truly rich Christian is one who lives in recognition of total dependence on the riches of Christ." [Note to self... continue to work for clarity.]

I sincerely appreciate your honest feed-back.

P.Jer.

Sorry I will miss the rest of the series

Hi Jerry, thanks for the clarification! It sounds like it will be a good series and I am sorry I will miss it. Maybe you should start recording your sermons again!
I hope your Greek course goes well,
Andrew

Psalm 1

When I think of total dependence upon the riches of Christ, I always go back to Psalm 1 and think of the tree planted by streams of water, which yields it fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither etc. If we don't keep our roots feeding off of that water our leaves will wither. I often think that sin is like oil floating upon the water. We all have sin in our lives and it is often found on the surface for all to see. If we keep our roots in the water which is the Spirit and Word of God we will be full of His riches, but if we allow that water to dry up and our roots start to feed off of the oil(which is sin), then we will struggle as Christians. How can we expect otherwise? But there is hope! If we come back to Christ the water will be topped up and our roots will not longer be in sin and we can enjoy the full riches of His grace.

Life of emptiness and fullness at the same time

By nature we don't even know we have a need. It's only when we are face to face with God in Christ that the Holy Spirit graciously opens our eyes, and we see that "we come short of the glory of God".

And now, through the death of Christ, on behalf of us sinners, God has provided the forgiveness and cleansing, fruit and fullness for God.

It is a life of constant "beholding him", which teaches us wisdom - of knowing the God of fullness and knowing the emptiness of self.

And faith is the hand that appropriates the fullness of God to our empty selves.

Blessed are the empty, for they shall be full - in Christ.

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