Header

FROM THE WORD

Breaking In

Arriving at the county jail, I noticed with surprise that two of the main double doors were shut and boarded up. Once inside I was told that a lady had crashed her car all the way into the front entrance to park it inside. Needless to say, she had been arrested and locked up! How ironic that she wanted to break into the jail when many inmates would gladly break out of the jail if they could!

We might consider this woman's actions senseless and bizarre, were it not for the fact that the poor soul was mentally deranged. Believing she was being pursued by a sinister force, she sought protection by gate-crashing her way into the county jail. Yet such an incident serves well to illustrate how multitudes of perfectly sane people are just as eager to gate-crash the worse kind of jail and endure the worst kind of bondage, and all to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season.

How sweet might taste the forbidden fruits of unrighteousness when initially indulged. Yet how bitter the outcome when sins seductive sweetness turns to a galling yoke, confining them in a house of bondage far worse that any jail or penitentiary! How true is the saying that the sinner will be "held with the cords of their sins." (Proverbs 5:22) Such a form of incarceration endures for a lifetime in many cases, to be finally enhanced by the irrevocable sentence of eternal death.

All the while, hidden in the shadows, Satan is constantly seeking to tighten the cords of sin around all who succumb to his enticements and secure their destruction. Such is his power that no earthly judge can stay the sinners impending execution and set them free. Yet, in the darkest moment, when all hope of clemency has failed there is still a way out to freedom and absolute surety of life! And that is through Jesus!

Almost 700 years before His incarnation, Isaiah the prophet painted a picture of the Savior's ministry to the incarcerated and doomed. "The Spirit of the LORD GOD is upon me; because the LORD has anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives; and the opening of the prison to them that are bound." (Isaiah 61:1)

This past week we heard four powerful testimonies uplift Jesus Christ as this Great Deliverer.

The four members of COMING OUT MINISTRIES described how the Savior opened the prison to them wherein they were bound and set them free! While Jesus hates sin, He is so amazingly patient and long suffering toward the sinner. He pities us all in our fallen state and does not rush to abandon the worst of sinners, leaving them without hope.

Time and further opportunity to repent and receive forgiveness are soon to pass away. We must not listen to Satan's lie that divine mercy is no more for us. We must believe that God still loves, still longs to forgive, and still longs to set us free from every evil. If you need to seek Him now, do not delay. Don't try to make yourself better before seeking His mercy. His mercy awaits you even now. Go to Him now, just as you are, and be encouraged with the following assurance:

"The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy. He will not always chide, neither will He keep His anger forever. He has not dealt with us after our sins nor rewarded us according to our iniquities. As the heaven is high above the earth, so great is His mercy toward them that fear Him. As far as the east is from the west so far has He removed our transgressions from us. Like as a father pities his children, so the LORD Pities them that fear Him. For He knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust." (Psalm 103: 8-14)

Mike Thompson, Associate Pastor

---

CENTRAL CORNER

This Week (March 26 - 31): 

• Tuesday @ 10:00 AM – Women’s Bible Study

• Tuesday @ 7:00 PM – Prayer Meeting with JeAnn Davis

• Wednesday @ 7:00 PM – Spanish Prayer Meeting 

This Sabbath (April 1): @ 9:00 AM: Morning Manna with Jonathan Martinez / @ 9:30 AM: Central Study Hour with Pastor Chris Buttery + Children/Youth/Adult Sabbath School Classes / @ 10:50 AM: Worship Service with Pastor Chris Buttery / 2:00 PM: Discipleship University with Pastor Fred Dana

Upcoming Events

Astonishing Discoveries in the Land of the Bible. Michael G. Hasel, professor of Near Eastern Studies and Archaeology at Southern Adventist University and Director of the Institute of Archaeology and Lynn H. Wood Archaeological Museum, will be presenting several riveting messages to strengthen your faith in God’s Word. Join us starting Friday, April 14 @ 7 PM. Click here for more details.

Media on the Brain. We see it all around us. Hollywood, popular music, TV, video gaming, spectator sports, e-relationships, and pornography are saturating the lives of God’s professed people, but what does the latest science say about the mind-altering effects of 21st century media? And what is the spiritual agenda in the entertainment and advertising industries? Find out starting Friday, April 21 @ 7 PM as we welcome Belt of Truth Ministries to Central. Join us and tell a friend.

The Promise. Enjoy this year’s Spring Concert by Sacramento Central entitled, The Promise, as we journey in song through the promises surrounding the cross of Christ and the many others that enable us to walk with Him. Starting at 4 PM on Sabbath, April 29, 2017. Doors open at 3:30 PM.

Family Matters

Operation Joash. To learn more about Operation Joash, get updates, get involved, or to donate, please visit https://zqh.orf.mybluehost.me/saccentral/operation-joash/.

Community Services (from now on known as Helping Hands to accommodate other church outreaches) continues to operate the successful Food Pantry, and has now just opened up the Clothes Closet. All clothing donations are to go through Barbara Ralls at 916.880.0164, or Verica Markovic at 916.485.5420. Please do NOT drop off clothing donations at the church.

New Library Books & DVDs. Visit our church library and browse through our latest selections on last-day events, Christian living, and family life. If you appreciated Coming Out Ministries messages, we now have their material in stock. Come and see.

---

NEW HEIGHTS

Resources

Coming Out DVD Series. The “Coming Out” series includes 13 incredible programs with three Co-Directors of ‘Coming Out’ Ministries. Steve Wohlberg of White Horse Media interviews Wayne Blakely, Mike Carducci and Ron Woolsey. All three testimonies lay credibility for the additional 10 programs. All the interviews direct the viewer to the Word of God. This series is instrumental for every believer regardless of denominational background. This is a faith in God message for all.

Be Inspired

---

Central Happenings is published by the Sacramento Central Seventh-day Adventist Church, 6045 Camellia Avenue, Sacramento, CA 95819 www.saccentral.org

Sacramento Central Staff: Chris Buttery, Senior Pastor; Mike Thompsons, Associate; Fred Dana, Associate; Michael Butler, Youth/Young Adult; JeAnn Davis, Bible Instructor

Central Happenings: Chris Buttery, Editor; Chrystal White, Copy Editor/Distributor