Verse of the Day

Sunday, November 18, 2012

The Twenty-Fourth Sunday after Trinity

The propers for the Twenty-Third Sunday after Trinity can be found on Page 223-224:

The Twenty-Fourth Sunday after Trinity
The Collect.

 LORD, we beseech thee, absolve thy people from their offences; that through thy bountiful goodness we may all be delivered from the bands of those sins, which by our frailty we have committed. Grant this, O heavenly Father, for the sake of Jesus Christ, our blessed Lord and Saviour. Amen.

Dru Arnold read the Epistle for today which was written in the First Chapter of the  Saint Paul’s letter to the Colossians, beginning at the Third Verse.  Writing to the people of Colossus, Paul tells them that he is constantly praying for them and exhorts them to do their very best to actually fulfill the promises they have made to God, to Walk the Walk, not just Talk the Talk; to study hard the Word and use the strength they will get from God to act on the things they have learned and professed.

e give thanks to God and the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, praying always for you, since we heard  of your faith in Christ Jesus, and of the love which ye have to all the saints, for the hope which is laid up for you in heaven, whereof ye heard before in the word of the truth of the gospel; which is come unto you, as it is in all the world; and bringeth forth fruit, as it doth also in you, since the day ye heard of it, and knew the grace of God in truth: as ye also learned of Epaphras our dear fellowservant, who is for you a faithful minister of Christ; who also declared unto us your love in the Spirit. For this cause we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to desire that ye might be filled with the knowledge of his will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that ye might walk worthy of the Lord unto all pleasing, being fruitful in every good work, and increasing in the knowledge of God; strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power, unto all patience and long-suffering with joyfulness; giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light.

Hap Arnold read the Holy Gospel which came from the Ninth Chapter of the Gospel according to St. Matthew beginning at the Eighteenth Verse.  While Jesus was talking to some of the disciples of John the Baptist, one of the local politicians whose daughter had just died came to Him with faith that He could return her to life.  As he was leaving His meeting with the disciples to follow the politician, a woman who had been ill for many years, reached out in faith to “touch His garment.”  She knew He was the key to her life, though she likely had no real understanding of just how.  She had faith in Jesus.  As she touched his garment, He turned saying, “Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole.”  She was instantly healed.  Like the Faithful Centurion[1]: Truth set her free, faith made her whole. Jesus continued on to the politician’s house and returned his daughter to the living.  Consider that in none of these cases did Jesus’ saving grace hinge on actions by the saved, but rather their faith that Jesus would save them, then acting in accordance with that faith.  It was not what they did, but what He did that saved them.  But, His actions were in accord with their faith.

hile Jesus spake these things unto John’s disciples, behold, there came a certain ruler, and worshipped him, saying, My daughter is even now dead: but come and lay thy hand upon her, and she shall live. And Jesus arose, and followed him, and so did his disciples. And, behold, a woman, which was diseased with an issue of blood twelve years, came behind him, and touched the hem of his garment: for she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole. But Jesus turned him about, and when he saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour. And when Jesus came into the ruler’s house, and saw the minstrels and the people making a noise, he said unto them, Give place: for the maid is not dead, but sleepeth. And they laughed him to scorn. But when the people were put forth, he went in, and took her by the hand, and the maid arose. And the fame hereof went abroad into all that land.

Sermon – Rev Deacon Jack Arnold – Time and Action

The Twenty-Fourth Sunday after Trinity
The Collect.
 LORD, we beseech thee, absolve thy people from  their offences; that through thy bountiful goodness we may all be delivered from the bands of those sins, which by our frailty we have committed. Grant this, O heavenly Father, for the sake of Jesus Christ, our blessed Lord and Saviour. Amen.

The Collect asks God to pardon our offences, through His great mercy we will be delivered from all multitudes of sins, by which our frail nature of ungodliness, we have committed these sins. As Abraham Lincoln said in the famous Gettysburg address “That this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom.”  Only under God, can be reborn a new, and as he said, our freedom will be reborn again.  However, we first have to ask for our sins to be pardoned and be delivered from our sins by Jesus Christ Our Lord and Our Heavenly Father.

Through a sense of godliness, we obtain that “new birth” of freedom. If everybody in this country followed that simple advice, just think of how great our country would be. Look at Abraham Lincoln for an example of a Godly man, one of the greatest Presidents ever elected, who by following God and His Word, helped preserve the Union of this wonderful nation.

In the Epistle, St. Paul tells the Colossians if we are to be reborn through Christ into a “new birth of freedom”, as Lincoln said, we must place our hope not on Earth, but in Our Heavenly Father and his abode above. If we do this, the truth shall shine forth through in our work, at home, in our daily lives and people shall see Christ working through us for His purposes. If we follow what God asks, which is a very common theme in the Bible, as it is in my sermons, we prosper and do well.

Which brings us to the point of the Gospel, in which Christ heals a woman, who has such supreme faith in Christ healing her, that if she but touches his cloak, she knows she will be healed. She did not have a single doubt about Christ’s power to heal her, her faith was solid.  Christ was impressed by the woman’s faith.  If we had the faith of this woman in Christ, imagine how we could impact the world around us. And, I might add, what is stopping us?  The ruler whose daughter had died also shared this amazing faith in Christ.  He had zero doubt whatsoever Christ would do these things.  The most important thing of all which was to raise his daughter from the dead. Christ also recognizes this man’s faith and rewards with the girl’s resurrection.  Quite a surprise for those who had just laughed and scorned him, basically telling him “That is impossible, you can’t raiser the girl from the dead.”

He proved them wrong.  He gave a very practical demonstration that much is denied men, but though God all things are possible.  But, we need the faith of the woman, the faith of the ruler and the faith of the centurion.  We must follow Him and the plan that he lays out for us. We have to be willing to listen and be ready to follow Him.  In time, we shall too have an amazing reward, through our faith and we shall be in a “new birth of freedom” from otherwise certain death.

The Collect, Epistle and Gospel tie together, laying out, detailing and reinforcing the same message, ultimately.  We have to have faith in Christ and God, and be willing to accept the Holy Ghost into us, that through Him, we may do good works on Earth and that we will receive our just reward for doing what is right in the end.

Be of God - Live of God - Act of God

Bishop Ogles’ Sermon
We are oft fortunate to get copies of Bishop Jerry’s sermon notes.  Today is one of those Sundays.  Today’s sermon starts off with the collect, and like always, it will give you a lot to consider in your heart.

Sermon Notes
Twenty-Fourth Sunday after Trinity Sunday
Second before Advent
18 November 2012, Anno Domini

The Twenty-Fourth Sunday after Trinity
The Collect.

 LORD, we beseech thee, absolve thy people from their offences; that through thy bountiful goodness we may all be delivered from the bands of those sins, which by our frailty we have committed. Grant this, O heavenly Father, for the sake of Jesus Christ, our blessed Lord and Saviour. Amen.

18 While he spake these things unto them, behold, there came a certain ruler, and worshipped him, saying, My daughter is even now dead: but come and lay thy hand upon her, and she shall live. 19 And Jesus arose, and followed him, and so did his disciples. 20 And, behold, a woman, which was diseased with an issue of blood twelve years, came behind him, and touched the hem of his garment: 21 For she said within herself, If I may but touch his garment, I shall be whole. 22 But Jesus turned him about, and when he saw her, he said, Daughter, be of good comfort; thy faith hath made thee whole. And the woman was made whole from that hour. 23 And when Jesus came into the ruler's house, and saw the minstrels and the people making a noise, 24 He said unto them, Give place: for the maid is not dead, but sleepeth. And they laughed him to scorn. 25 But when the people were put forth, he went in, and took her by the hand, and the maid arose. 26 And the fame hereof went abroad into all that land. (Matt 9:18-26 )
The world may be divided into two distinct groups – those immense numbers who do not believe, and those very few who do believe, and believe unto salvation. The unbelievers provide no venue for God's miracles. They separate themselves from the grace of God by their unbelief. Those who believe invite the Hand of God to work according to His will, even if that will supersedes the Natural Law (which the Maker of Natural Law is able to do).
Jairus is the ruler of a synagogue. His political and religious world does not naturally include Jesus. Though Jairus has heard much of Christ, and seems to have surely believed that He was able to do the works of God, he was reluctant to break the bonds of political and peer pressure to come to Christ in fair weather. But now the beloved little daughter of Jairus has taken ill to the point of death. Extraordinary ordeal may lead to extraordinary faith – and this is the case with Jairus. When the die of death is cast before him of one most beloved, Jairus is forced to reach into the depth of his heart for the courage to do that which is expedient and right. He runs to the LORD.
What did Jairus do that resulted in his most amazing blessing? Well, first Jairus came to the very Fountain of Life that he believed would sustain his little daughter's life. That is the first step of every sinner – COME TO CHRIST! That Fountain of Living Waters will grant life, not only in this world, but eternal life in the world to come. So, Jairus musters the courage and fortitude to come to Jesus.
Secondly, Jairus worshipped Christ. Mark 5:22 says that Jairus fell at the feet of Jesus. Though it is very true that every knee shall bow, and every tongue shall confess to Christ, timing is everything when it comes to salvation. Our great need is at the day and hour that worship of Christ will result in salvation – not after the curtain has fallen and it will be too late to acknowledge Him as Lord. Jairus acknowledged the Divine power of Christ to heal. His mind was upon the body of a precious little girl at the point of death, but that power Jairus acknowledged also extended to the healing of her precious soul.
Thirdly, Jairus not only came to the Fount of Life, but he also expressed his faith through prayer! How all-important is prayer in the life of a saint. Prayer is the steam upon which the engine is driven. His prayer was not a doubting, but a believing, prayer. "My daughter is even now dead: but come and lay thy hand upon her, and she shall live." Yes, little did Jairus realize that his prayer was so full of truth! Even if the child was dead, she shall live if only Christ lays His hand on her! Word came to Jairus as he was with Jesus that his little daughter had died. But just a little faith goes a long way with Christ. He would go a step farther than healing the girl – He would awaken her from the sleep of death! But, even so, Christ did not merely lay His Hand on her – He, instead, took her lovingly by the hand and, with a voice that penetrates centuries and the ears of death, said, "Talitha cumi!" This is a term of Chaldee origin meaning, "Young girl, arise!" What does one, even if dead, do at such a command from the portals of Heaven itself? Immediately, despite the ridicule and jest of the unbelievers without, she arose and walked, and was given food to eat at the command of Christ, for she was hungry! (Mark 5:42, 43) Death knows no hunger, but the truly living thirst for the Bread of Life!
Miracles of heart always accompany miracles of body. As Jesus journeyed to the dying room of Jairus's daughter, another miracle of faith had taken shape in the heart of a poor and desperate woman taken with a long-lasting (twelve years) issue of blood. The woman had spent all of her living on physicians who had not helped her in the least, but rather she had grown steadily worse. She had spent the lonely hours, days, months, and years in pain and a sure knowledge that her affliction led to a manmade grave of death. Then, her blessed and fortunate ears heard of Jesus! Hearing is not always enough. We must act on the hearing of Him, and this woman heard, believed, and sought Him out as an answer to the affliction in her body and the pain in her heart.
Hearing a commotion in the street, she came out and discovered that this man, Jesus, was approach in a great throng of men. How could she approach Him? I know her dread, for I was there – and so were you, if you believe! We all were that woman, and we were Jairus as well! There was a moment in time that we arose, like the woman, from our sick beds of the leprosy of sin, and sought solace in the healing Balm of Gilead. Like Jairus, facing the misery and despair of dying love, we sought the very Fountainhead of Life and Love…..and He answered!
There were so many people pressing around the Lord that the woman despaired of reaching Him. Quite often it is the very ones nearest the Lord that hoard His Presence and prevent others from coming to Him. But the faith of this woman would not be turned away. It was a fervent and persistent faith that would not admit of defeat! She dared not disturb His dignity out of a high reverence for His Person, so she contrived to innocent touch the hem of His garment without disturbing His Peace. …and she did! Not the slightest expression of faith goes unnoticed by our blessed Savior! He felt the touch of the woman from eternity past until the moment of its expression in time. "Who touched my clothes?" (Mark 5:30) This is a question framed by our Lord long before that encounter on the dusty streets of Capernaum – "Who touched me?" Have you dared touch Christ with the prayers of your heart?
Have you, friend, wept the bitter tears of Jairus for your living young ones who linger in the walk of death to which all sinners belong? Have you arisen from your sick beds of sin and went seeking Christ, the Healer and Preserver of Life? If not, why not? Why, He is passing on your street even now! He will journey to your house today to restore life to a precious child of your greatest love. But, your faith must invite the miracle of life! The greater miracle of Christ is not a restoration to temporary life, but to Life Eternal in Him!
In the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, Amen.

Bishop Dennis Campbell’s Sermon
Bishop Dennis is a brilliant speaker.  He is able to take biblical precepts and make them perfectly understandable, even to me.  Oft he provides the text of his sermons and I take the utmost pleasure in passing them on:

God Our Freedom
Psalm 66, Colossians 1:3-12, Matthew 9:18-22
Twenty-forth Sunday after Trinity
18 November 2012

The Collect for today is a prayer for deliverance from the bands of sin.  What are these bands of sin?  They are the bonds the chains that hold us in slavery to sin.  For today let us divide them into two parts.

First is the sinfulness that lingers in us still.  It is that unrighteousness that lurks within us and continues to attempt to rule and control us  The abiding sinfulness of our nature continues to attempt to shape our thoughts and values and actions and habits of responding to life and our understanding of life.  It attempts to hold us in sin.  It does not want to free us.  It is a band that attempts to hold us in sin.

Second is what I will call the consequences of sin.  Usually we think about hell when we think about the consequences of sin, and we should, for that is part of them.  But there are also consequences in this life, a "hell on earth."  I am referring here to a sickness in the soul that traps us in a deep sense of grief.  I have trouble putting this into words because all the words I can think of have been over-used and trivialised.  Depression, despair, absolute lack of hope, grief; these are all words that come to mind, but cannot seem to convey what I am trying to express.  I am talking about something so powerful it grips your soul and binds you in chains, and has the ability to throw you into the deepest most horrible living hell, from which you can not free yourself. This hell is a part of life in this fallen world.  It is life among fallen people, who can and do hurt you. 
It is life in your fallen soul, watching yourself make mistakes that harm you, and living with their consequences. I think, if we are honest, we will see that many of our troubles in life are self-inflicted.  But there is a kind of hell that comes from watching people you love make mistakes they will pay for the rest of their lives, and watching people you love suffer and die.  It includes watching your country makes mistakes it will pay for for generations, and watching denomination after denomination forsake the faith and become nothing more than synagogues of satan.  All of these things contribute to a hopelessness in us which beats us down into deep and dark despair, and that is a large part of the consequences of sin.

The Gospel lesson today shows the healing of two people, each under the burden and despair I have just described.  The woman was excluded from full participation in the religious life of her people.  That doesn't seem like much to people today.  We have to beg people to come to church and constantly urge them to do the simplest things of faith.  Some groups have become experts at making church more attractive to non-Christians.  I don't think that is possible.  Church is by definition repulsive to non-Christians, for they are at enmity with God, and worshiping Him seems foolish to them.  You may give them emotional experiences and friendships and small groups and entertainment, and you may structure your church to offer such things, but such "churches" do not usually reach the unchurched,  they just siphon people out of the local, traditional congregations.  If you find the old hymns and traditional worship and sermons boring, and need a band and excitement and novelty to feel like you are in the presence of God, maybe the problem is not in the traditional church, maybe the problem is in you.

The woman in our reading for today wanted to be in Church.  She was forbidden to participate in the Temple and synagogue.  She couldn't eat the Passover or participate in the daily liturgical prayers of the Temple. She wasn't even supposed to be in public during her issue of blood, and this woman's issue had lasted more than a decade.  She must have been hopeless until she heard about Jesus.  Then she touched the hem of His garment, and was made whole, made clean, restored to the religious life of Israel, restored to fellowship with God.  Now she had hope.  She was delivered from that despair I mentioned earlier.

How can we be delivered from the bands of sin?  How can we touch the hem of His garment?

First, worship.  There is grace here, in this church.  There is grace in the hymns, grace in the liturgy, grace in the prayers, and grace in the Word.  God ministers to us in these things.  He shapes our minds and attitudes, which, in turn, shape our actions and outlook on life.  He removes the despair.  He gives hope and confidence that things can be better for us because we can be better people and better equipped to deal with life, through His grace.  In fact, equipping us to deal with life is a major part of the way He ministers to us as we worship Him.

Second, pray.  I am not talking about asking God for things, or even about having " little talk with Jesus."  I am talking about seeking God.  Most of the Biblical references to prayer are references to worship; corporate, public worship in God's house on God's day, and private and family worship daily.  The reason most people have trouble praying is because they view prayer as asking God for things rather than being shaped and empowered by God.  They get tired of asking for things, and don't know what to ask for, so they have prayer lists.  Yes, prayer lists can be good things.  They become a hindrance when we begin to think praying for the needs and people on the list is all there is to prayer, and that when you have finished your list you have prayed.

Prayer is about receiving grace from God for there is grace in prayer.  You meet God in prayer.  He shapes you in prayer.  He heals your soul and heals your mind as you meet Him in prayer.  That's why the people of God have always prayed liturgically, at least until a few splinter groups made spontaneous prayer the norm.  Spontaneous prayer is good sometimes, but it tends to be too self-oriented and things oriented.  The liturgical prayers tend to be more about God and being renewed in the image of Christ.  There is grace in our liturgical prayers.  In them we touch the hem of His garment.

Third, read the Bible.  God has called us together today to hear His Word.  He has called us together to address us with His truth.  But the Bible is not just for Sundays.  Reading it should be a daily liturgy for us, and there is no better thing you can do for yourself, your wife, husband parents, children and friends than to gather them with you around the Bible.

Fourth, receive the Sacraments.  There is grace in baptism and there is grace in the Lord's Supper.  He ministers to us in these things.  He makes us members of His Church.  He strengthens our faith.  He draws us into Himself.   Why, then, would we let anything prevent us from receiving them?  In these things He heals our souls. In them we touch the hem of His garment.

Finally, something I fear we overlook as a way to be freed of the bands of sin; obey God.  Not just in the big things, the great things, but in the small things of life.  Obey God in the home, on the job, and by doing the small things of life heartily unto the Lord.  I don't like taking out the trash.  Taking out the trash fills garbage cans, then I have to take them to the dump, and the dumpsters are always full and I always come home smelling like a garbage truck.  So I tend to procrastinate about the trash.  But when I make myself do it because it is my duty to my family and my God, or, more usually, when Sue finally makes me do it, it is amazing how good I feel about it.  It is amazing how such a little thing can lift some of that darkness and despair, if it is done properly for the glory of God.  You are a steward of God's resources, and taking out the trash is taking care of God's resources, and it makes you feel better, like you have accomplished something and done a small part of your duty to God.  Maybe you didn't want to do it, but you made yourself do it for God, and you found that, while you were serving Him He was ministering to you.  There is grace in these small things, in doing dishes and mowing lawns and loving one another.  In them we touch the hem of His garment.

Touching the hem of His garment is basically acting on faith,  It is doing what He commands in the belief that His commandments are the way of life and peace in this world and the next.  We do as He bids, believing He will bless us.

Faith is trusting His word and acting on that faith. It is not a feeling, and it is not done because we feel like doing it.  It is done because we believe Christ.  May the Father of all mercies grant us grace and free us from the bands of sin.

+Dennis Campbell, Bishop
Anglican Orthodox Church Diocese of Virginia
Rector, Holy Trinity Anglican Orthodox Church
Powhatan, Virginia

Rev Bryan Dabney of Saint John’s Sunday Sermon
We are fortunate to have Bryan’s Sunday Sermon.  If you want people to come to The Truth, you have to speak the truth, expouse the truth and live the truth.    This is really a good piece and I commend it to your careful reading.

From Bishop Jerry:

My compliments, Bryan+, on a stirring and courageous reminder of the labors of Bishop James Parker Dees in perpetuating a Godly Church in the Anglican tradition. You expressed well the manly fortitude and sacrifice such biblical testimony requires. Especially in these latter days, we must stand with courage and conviction in Christ. You have broadcast the seeds of truth liberally without regard for the toes upon which they fall - an increasingly rare and admirable quality which follows in the path of Bishop Dees. We are called, especially as ministers, to preach with forthrightness, courage, and bold resolve the whole counsel of God without fear of the consequences. We must quit ourselves as men of backbone and not as withering wimps of worry. Watch ye, stand fast in the faith, quit you like men, be strong. (1 Cor 16:13)

Sermon for the Twenty-Fourth Sunday after Trinity
The Forty-Ninth Anniversary of the founding of the Anglican Orthodox Church

Today we remember the life of our communion's founder, the Most Reverend James Parker Dees. Forty-nine years ago, he departed from the Episcopal Church because it was falling into apostasy and that there was no way to stop it. Scripture tells us that we must contend for the faith (St. Jude 3). Therefore, if any church or denomination abandons the truth of God's word written, then all who wish to remain true and faithful to the Godhead must leave said body.

The words of St. Paul in his second epistle to the Corinthian church (6:17) are unmistakably clear: Wherefore come out from among them and be ye separate, saith the Lord and touch not the unclean thing and I will receive you. It was on account of his faithfulness to God's word and his courage in the face of so much vitriol that Bishop Dees left the dying body of the Episcopal Church he loved and established the Anglican Orthodox Church. The AOC is an independent Anglican body that holds only those doctrines of faith and worship which are firmly grounded upon the inerrant word of God.

The AOC continues to be one of the few episcopal bodies which has consistently stood against:

1) Ecumenism– the acceptance of all faiths and denominations as valid regardless of their teachings. The old line denominations of Christendom have fallen into Lucifer's snare of Political Correctness. The PC movement's goal has been more about silencing criticism, rather than preventing injustice. It is a placebo, not a solution. Likewise, Ecumenism has opened the way for the creation of a PC version of Christianity with its unbiblical tenets of "everybody is good," "everybody is saved," "everybody can learn the basic skills," (oops, that last one is a piece of Proto-PC educational jargon which is as false as the basic premises of Ecumenism, but you get the point).

PC churches call for "tolerance" for everyone but for the true believers in Jesus Christ. They call for "inclusion" for everyone so that the exclusivity of the gospel message is watered down by every form of compromise for the sake of unity. And, they call for "peace," but it is a peace which will cost the true Christian dearly by living in acceptance of their denomination's twisted understanding of the Bible.

2) Then there is theological liberalism–a belief system that goes hand in hand with ecumenism and encompasses such notions as the denial of Scripture as inerrant truth, the acceptance of women into the office of the clergy, the denial of the virgin birth of our Lord, the denial of individual and hierarchal evil in the personage of Lucifer and his hosts of fallen spirits, and the acceptance of sinful behaviors within the church which are plainly prohibited by Scripture. The majority of church denominations today have embraced to a greater or lesser degree the aforementioned practices and beliefs.

These things did not come about overnight but were introduced gradually so as not to shake the unsuspecting congregants from the comfort of their pews.It was not until some of the more controversial elements were introduced that there arose a hue and cry among the faithful. But by that time, the process of change had so metastasized that there was little realistic hope of recovering that which was lost. It was gone, having mutated into another belief system that follows after another gospel and worships another Christ (see Galatians 1:6-9).

3) And on account of the preceding point, acceptance of said heretical beliefs and practices by the various episcopal denominations has gone hand in hand with their relegation of the Articles of Religion to mere footnote status. The Thirty-nine Articles had kept the Anglican Church and its various subdivisions in doctrinal purity. However, once these were abandoned, said churches were then loosed from their ecclesiastical moorings and have ever since been tossed to and fro by every wind of false doctrine and every evil way.

4) And last but certainly not least, the rejection of the Authorized Version of Scripture as the Bible of choice for use within the churches. One can go online today and find Christian web sites where the King James Only churches are roundly condemned as cultist in nature. Also, anyone who dares to take issue with those who use the other questionable versions (those which came after 1881 beginning with the Revised Version right on up to the new NIV) are regularly subjected to what my grandfather used call, "a venting spleen" by those who cannot abide the KJV for one reason or another.

Why all this hatred toward the King James? Because for many generations, countless Christians who happen to speak English have relied on it for comfort and for edification in their Christian walk. It is the word of God written in a very elegant and reverent form of the English language. If you use the other versions and compare them with the KJV, you will find that they will have missing words, missing phrases and missing passages. It is welled documented that the NIV (which has become the most popular of the new versions) has some 64,000 plus words less than the Authorized Version.

The other versions vary between the two. And why? Because only the King James is based on the Textus Receptus: a Greek text of New Testament which was developed in the 16th century from a host of Byzantine manuscripts and fragments while the new versions are largely based on two Alexandrian texts that were the likely products of Origen, a noted Christian heretic from the 3rd century A.D. or several of his associates. These were later collated by two apostate Anglican scholars named Hort and Westcott who developed their own Greek text which they later used to create the Revised Version of the Bible in 1881. Their corrupted Greek text has become the base for all of the new versions thanks to the work of modern scholarship. Now, why on earth would you have a bible that has a base text developed by one heretic and formulated into others by two more? Such is a good example of spreading bad seed and the master of deception is behind it all.

Bishop Dees set out to found an episcopal body that would remain faithful to God's word written. He sought to educate young men in the fundamentals of sound doctrine and worship so that they too would be faithful ministers. He might be compared to the noble Epaphras of Colosse (Colossians 1:7, 8) in that he was a learned and faithful minister of Christ being well-studied in the Scriptures. When he witnessed the error of the Episcopal Church, he raised his voice in favor of the truth of God's word written, even when it was not popular to do so. And he was an able leader of our communion as he set up a worldwide ministry which continues to this day.

Still, it has not been an easy road for our communion. Shortly after Bishop Dees passed away, the church lost many of its congregations and its seminary to a new denomination whose theology and ministry departed from the sound Protestant understanding of faith and practice. It took several years of legal wrangling with little good news before the church was able to re-establish itself as a viable ministry. Nevertheless, God does not abandon his own. He provided financial support via faithful members whose legacy we benefit from today. He has blessed us with a worldwide ministry which has added congregations and dioceses across Africa, South America, the Caribbean, parts of central Asia, as well as in the Solomon Islands and the Philippines. He has aided our communion here in North America with the development of several new congregations in both Canada and the United States.

So when the naysayers criticize us for being too small, or for meeting in private homes, or because our ministers do not wear superfluous ornaments and vestments, or because we hold to the foundational doctrines of Anglican Christianity via our use of the 1928 Book of Common Prayer and the King James Bible; we respond that we are remaining faithful to the very words of the Scriptures. We believe that we ought to keep our Lord's commands, not compromise them for whatever plum the devil and his earthly puppets will dangle before us. Bishop Dees resisted such in 1963, and we are obliged to do the same today. As we remember his sacrifices and his trials, let us vow to keep our church firmly grounded on the Rock of Christ and his word written. May it please our God to assist us in this quest as we continue to hold fast to the sound doctrines which we have been given till he comes again.

Let us pray:
OLY and gracious God, who art the author of all sound doctrine; guide this our Anglican Orthodox Church into all truth; fill our ministers and members with thy most holy Spirit; that through our witness, we will bear fruit in thy name. And this we ask in the name of him who gave us the Great Commission, even Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Have a blessed week,


[1] The centurion at Capernaum whose servant is ill:  Matthew Chapter 8 verses 5 to 13:

And when Jesus was entered into Capernaum, there came unto him a centurion, beseeching him, And saying, Lord, my servant lieth at home sick of the palsy, grievously tormented. And Jesus saith unto him, I will come and heal him. The centurion answered and said, Lord, I am not worthy that thou shouldest come under my roof: but speak the word only, and my servant shall be healed. For I am a man under authority, having soldiers under me: and I say to this man, Go, and he goeth; and to another, Come, and he cometh; and to my servant, Do this, and he doeth it. When Jesus heard it, he marvelled, and said to them that followed, Verily I say unto you, I have not found so great faith, no, not in Israel. And I say unto you, That many shall come from the east and west, and shall sit down with Abraham, and Isaac, and Jacob, in the kingdom of heaven. But the children of the kingdom shall be cast out into outer darkness: there shall be weeping and gnashing of teeth. And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour.

See how this story matches that of the woman:
·       His servant was sick;
·       He knew Christ could help;
·       He was prepared to ask Christ for help;
·       He knew that Christ was in a position of power;
·       He didn't even have to be near the servant to help

The centurion wasn't someone who went to get a doctor, or an itinerant herbalist. He went seeking a miracle, and that is what his faith got him.  This centurion had faith, greater faith than Christ had ever found. Yet who was he? He wasn't a scribe or Hebrew scholar. He wasn't a member of the local synagogue. He was a member of the hated, oppressing, occupying army.

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