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PalmBeachPost-Times, Saturday.Nov. 2, 196825 . . . MAKE STRONG COMMUNITIES i- sM-- hM STRONG CHURCHES Sunday School Lesson By EARL L. DOUGLASS The letter by Peter which We are studying today has often been called the Epistle of Courage, the Epistle of Hope. It must have come as a welcome solace to the Christians t whom it was addressed. The ..a of persecution was just beginning and many must have thought it highly unjust that a covenanted people who had testified to their faith in Jesus Christ should suffer at the hands of the ungodly. Jn the pagan religions the gods were supposed to protect their own devotees. We may well Imagine, therefore, that recent converts to Christiaiil'v were keenly disappointed to find out that their faith, far from protecting them from persecution, was instrumental in bringing It down upon their heads. Actually, of course,' the reaction of the early Christians merely poses the perennial problem of undeserved suffering which is just as difficult of solution today as it was In the days of Peter. In this lesson Peter tries to show the Christians of his generation what their attitude should be in this eventuality. He makes This Series of Messages Is Made Possible By These Business Firms, Whose Desire Is To Awaken Our Citizenry To Their Need For Divine Guidance . Angelinda's Guaranty Restaurant . . . Angelo & Linda Busca'glis Hawthorne Roofing, Heating & Air Conditioning Co. . . . Henry J. Delbum Arrow Electric Company-. . . Vincent L. Burkhardt Carpenter's Roofing and Sheet Metal Works, Inc. . . . Floyd A. Carpenter & Employees It plain that Christians will en- l BELVEDERE BAPTIST CHURCH CHERRY ROAD AND CONGRESS AVE. "OUR ALL FOR CHRIST" Boys Roofing & Sheet Metal . . . Victor P. Kinsey & Employees The R. II. Barto Company . . . Roy H. Barto Palm Beach Office Supply . . . E. C. Boozer, Fred Griffith Wayne Akers Ford, Inc. . . . and Employees REVIVAL B. D. Cole, Inc. ...Bert D.Cole SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 3 THRU SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 10 7:30 EACH NIGHT Florida Industrial Service, Inc. ...John Boise S & S Cafeteria . . . R. M. Lesley & Employees J. M. Fields, Inc.. . . . and Employees Marian's Pharmacy 826 Belvedere Road . . . Mrs. Marian Williams Sea Breeze-Holiday Inn Hotels . . . Frank Williams, Gen. Mgr. . . . Sam Gregory, Inn Keeper Anthony's . . . The Anthony Brothers Halsey & Griffith, Inc. . . . Jim Waugh, Sr. ' Rinker Materials Corporation ...M. E. Rinker Atlantic National Bank . . . H. C. Smith Felder-Bell, Inc. . . . Lloyd C. Bell D. K. SNYDER Pastor W. G. Lassiter Co., Inc. . . . William G. Lassiter, Sr. & Jr. Perini Land & Development Co. . . . Louis R. Perini. Jr. counter ridicule and dislike. But, after all; as Christ said, "Be not afraid ef them that ' kill the body." This is all the persecutors can do, and for the Christian this certainly docs not mean the end of all things. ! Christians today often face the same type of ridicule they encountered in the first centu-, ry, and often it comes In the lorm of charges of hypocrisy. Faults which would go unnoticed in others, or at least would be extenuated, are magnified when they appear in Christians. It Is understandable why this should be so, and perhaps it is even just that it be so, but since none of us is perfect, we can expect a double standard to be used against us. Continuing his advice to the persecuted, Peter explains that It is very important to have a good conscience. Those who . are prosecuted for just cause are punished indeed, but the man with a clear conscience has reserves of confidence and fortitude which make the pangs of persecution much easier to bear. Actually, most of the suffering In the world is the result of our own waywardness and vice. Psychologists have a rule of thumb that the "well-Integrated person" is one who wants to do what he should do. But how few of us fall into that category. Most of us at one time or another do things we know we shall have to pay for later. And when this waywardness and selfishness is projected Into national policy the way it so often is today, it may well have catastrophic results Of course side by side with the suffering we bring on ourselves is the undeserved suffering which comes from causes outside of our control. To all those individuals, past and present, who have found it so difficult to reconcile themselves to this kind of suffering, Tcter points to the example of Christ himself; Insofar as they suffer the pangs of persecution they share in the experience of the cross. Peter finally reminds his readers that at the end of time they can confidently expect justice at the hands of God. The persecutors might seem to flourish now, but they will finally have to face God's verdict. Of course, the fact that Christians may expect reward for their fortitude should not bo a cause of self-satisfaction and self-righteousness. We will all have somelhlng to answer for. But at least we know that God is a God of love, and that justice will be tempered with mercy. What God Is interested in is our sincerity, truthfulness, as we look Into our own hearts, our faith, our persistence to overcome evil and achieve good no matter what the cost may be. In other words, God is more Interested In what we try to achieve than In our actual accomplishments. In the last analysis, sutfer-l lng is a type of witness. As one enters into the suffering of Christ, one enters into his life and finds an inner peace and a rew power to resist evil. The literal truth of this statement Is well illustrated in the live's Blumer & Stanton, Inc. ... "Quality Millwork" First Federal Savings & Loan Assn. of Lake Worth . . . R. E. Branch Burdine's . . . and All Associates If W IV a Sasser's Glassworks, Inc. ...J.Byron Sasser Lainhart & Potter . . . Donald C. Lainhart . . . John A. Sheffield WAYNE 1. BURTCHER Evangelist JOE AND SUE VANDEGRIFF Song leader and Pianist Cochrane Buick Company . . . Edward H. Cochrane Florida National Bank & Trust . . . Directors, Officers and Employees Techni-Services, Inc. . . . Alvan O'Steen Firestone Stores . . . Gary Clark & Employees Palm Beach Woodwork Co. ... J. C.& Charles Pike Crabtree Construction Co. . . . John M. Crabtree & Employees HEAR WAYNE L. BURTCHER BORN IN OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLAHOMA BUT CLAIMS THE OZARKS OF MISSOURI AS HIS HOME 31 YEARS OF AGE. MARRIED FOR 10 YEARS AND HAS 3 CHILDREN. 2 BOYS, 1 GIRL GRADUATE OF SOUTHWESTERN BAPTIST THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY, FORT WORTH, TEXAS. PASTOR FOR NINE YEARS IN MISSOURI, AND TEXAS. ASSOCIATE PASTOR AT NORTHWOOD BAPTIST IN WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA, FOR THE LAST YEAR. REVIVAL AND YOU The great question facing our world at this moment, it not do we NEED A REVIVAL? But that what will happen to our civilization, our communities, our homes, our churches within the next five years if we don't have a renewal of Spiritual awakening? Revival is a sovereign act of God for His "people. Revival is a New Life, Revival is the blessings that Jesus Christ gives for His work, Revival is for YOUH God's invitation is still urgent, "If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land." II. Chron. 7iU. I extend to everyone an invitation to come during this week and expect great things from God. D. K. Snyder, Pastor Sewell Hardware Co. ...W.L.Sewell,Sr. Fidelity Federal Savings & Loan Association . . . George Preston Mather Furniture ... Joe Tidwell & Employees Arnold Construction Co. ...C.E. Waters . Hedrick-Brown Construction Co., Inc. : . . . Walter F. Brown Knox Feed and Supply . . . Jim & Eddie Knox SPECIAL NIGHTLY EMPHASIS MONDAY Sunday School in Revival TUESDAY Training Union in Revival WEDNESDAY Mens night in Revival THURSDAY ...'.ladies night in Revival FRIDAY ...Family night in Revival SATURDAY Youth in Revival COME EACH NIGHT AND BE A PART OF A REVIVAL Fabric Center, Inc. . . . Mae Jones & Employees First American Bank of North Palm Beach . . . and Employees Professional Telephone Service of the Palm Beaches 429 Palm Street Bechtel Jewelers, Inc. .i. of West Palm Beach of the early Christian martyrs. . I For them suffering was not an unkind and undeserved fate but an opportunity, to demonstrate the power of their faith to unbelievers. And their demonstration was magnificently effective. Christianity grew .steadily in the number of its adherents and in its influence, and In the end became the official religion of the Roman Empire. Almost our Lord's last words to his disciples were that they should witness for him. "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, . . . teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world." SENTENCE SERMONS To love all mankind a cheerful state of being is required, but to see Into mankind, into life, and still more into ourselves, suffering Is requisite. Kichter , , The effort to explain everything sometimes may endanger faith. Many things God reserves to himself, and many things are reserved for the unfolding of the future life. Tryon Edwards . Have Faith In God.. Support His Cause .. Attend His Church!