We are not a theater or theme park. We are a church. Our purpose is not to entertain people; it is not to provide them with a place for their enjoyment. Instead, our God-given purpose is to evangelize the sinner and to edify the saint. We evangelize the sinner by preaching the Gospel. We edify the saint by teaching God’s Word. Therefore, it is the Bible, God’s divinely inspired and infallible written revelation of Himself to mankind that we areoffering to our fellowman at New Hope Baptist Church.
According to Alistair Begg, pastor of Cleveland’s Parkside Church, “A good church is a Bible-centered church. Nothing is as important as this—not a large congregation, a witty pastor, or tangible experiences of the Holy Spirit.” Chances are being Bible-centered won’t attract large throngs of people to a church today, in these Bible-spurning days. Still, every church must decide whether to be true to its mission or whether to opt for other things in an effort to increase the number of people in its pews and the amount of dollars in its collection plates.
We’re calling 2017 the year of the Bible at New Hope. We’ll be reading through the Bible chronologically and walking through what we’ve read in the previous week each Sunday night at 6:00 P.M. We’ll also be praying our way through the Bible in our midweek prayer services at 7:00 P.M. In addition, we’ll be providing you with daily devotions about the Bible on our church’s website.
It is our hope at New Hope that you will join us in this exciting scriptural journey in 2017. It is also our hope that you will not just walk through the Bible with us, but also walk out the Bible in your daily life. After all, the Bible is meant to be walked out, not just walked through. As D. L. Moody once said, “Every Bible should be bound in shoe leather.”
D. L. Moody also said, “Out of 100 men, one will read the Bible, the other 99 will read the Christian.” Here we see the importance of applying to our lives and practicing each day the teachings of the Scriptures. As the poem below says so well, you are the only Bible some people will ever read.
Christ has no hands but our hands
To do His work today;
He has no feet but our feet
To lead men in His way;
He has no tongue but our tongue
To tell men how He died;
He has no help but our help
To bring them to His side.
We are the only Bible
The careless world will read;
We are the sinners gospel,
We are the scoffer’s creed;
We are the Lord’s last message,
Given in deed and word;
What if the type is crooked?
What if the print is blurred?
What if our hands are busy
With other work than His?
What if our feet are walking
Where sin’s allurement is?
What if our tongues are speaking
Of things His lips would spurn?
How can we hope to help Him
And hasten His return?