On this page, you'll find Elder Silas Ford's weekly Sunday message. We pray that they'll be a blessing to you as they have us.
The Gospel of Luke
October 2, 2016
Introduction to Luke
As we begin our study of the Gospel of Luke, Elder Silas Ford introduces us to the writer. Not a lot is known about Luke as he is mentioned in name only 3 times in the scriptures, but what we do know shows us a humble, beloved servant of God, and companion of Paul, whom desired to share with Theophilus (Lover of God) the story of Jesus Christ and His accomplished salvation of His people. As lovers of God ourselves, we hope to see Jesus Christ, his birth, life, death, and resurrection unfold before us as we go forward in the study of this inspired gospel.
October 23, 2016
Gabriel Visits Mary
On this day, we take a look at the amazing encounter that a young virgin girl has with God's messenger, Gabriel, and what it teaches us. All too often, we can get lost in the narrative rather than the message itself. That message, that the angel shared with Mary about her son was, "He shall be great." In addition, we learn that this wasn't just the beginning of a life, but that a kingdom was at hand, and that this kingdom would have no end. Lastly, we have an obligation to follow in Mary's heartfelt submission to the word of God, "Be it unto me."
November 20, 2016
The Birth of John
As spoken by the word of God through Malachi in the last words of the Old Testament, there was one that was to come before the Messiah. Gabriel appears to a priest, Zacharias 400 years later and tells him that this forerunner would be his son, and that his name was to be John. In today's message, we see Luke's narrative of the Birth of John and see the confirmation of all that God had spoken beforehand about this child in his birth.
December 4, 2016
Birth and Taxes
At some time in your life, you've probably heard the phrase, "Only two things are certain in life, death and taxes." Today we look at another certainty, that Christ would be born in Bethlehem, the City of David. It might have been a decree from Caesar Augustus that brought Joseph and Mary to their ancestral home to be taxed, but it was God's providence that they would be there when "Mary's days were accomplished." In today's message we focus on God's providence in man's affairs that led this family to Bethlehem.
December 18, 2016
Glory and Good Will
One of the most well known scenes in the birth of Jesus Christ is the glorious appearance of the angel of the Lord unto the shepherds. This angel, and the heavenly host delivered a message to the shepherds so emphatically, that they would leave their flocks behind to see for themselves what had been told to them. Today, we look at this scene and, specifically, the words of the heavenly host, "Glory to God in the highest."
January 15, 2017
Simeon and Anna (Hearing, Seeing, and Speaking)
In today's message, Elder Ford points us to two witnesses of the child Christ and their glorious testimony that this was indeed the Messiah. In the narrative of Jesus Christ, these two figures, Simeon and Anna, need not be forgotten. They give us a wonderful example of how we should respond at seeing and hearing Christ ourselves. And that is to testify of our experience of His appearance in us.
February 5, 2017
What Shall We Do Then?
Almost two decades have passed in the lifetime of Jesus and John the when Luke picks us back up with the ministry of John the Baptist. In preparing the way for the Messiah, John comes preaching the message of repentance and baptism. As this teaching reached the masses, many came to him asking the question we all ought to be asking, "What shall we do then?" Today, we take a look at just how John responded, and how we ought to respond.
February 19, 2017
Pleasing the Father
Today we come to the baptism of Jesus Christ. Although there is a brief mention of John's imprisonment, the heart of this passage is, as it should be, Jesus Christ. We see that after His baptism, the heavens opened up and a voice came from heaven. This voice proclaimed the pleasure of the Father in Jesus Christ. As we look at what pleases the Lord, we see that, in Christ, the Father is pleased in making us His people, through the pleasure of bruising of Christ on our behalf.
March 12, 2017
The Temptation of Christ
Immediately after the baptism of Jesus, He is led, by the Spirit into the wilderness of Judea. A very harsh, rugged place where Satan attempts, unsuccessfully, to disrupt the will of God. Unlike our temptations, however, the tempting we see here are absolutely external, as Christ had the inability to divert from the will of God, even in his thinking. The lesson in our own temptations is Christ's response, "It is written". When all else fails, we can look to the Holy Word for direction in our own trials.
April 2, 2017
Christ preaches in Nazareth (Part 1)
At this point in the Gospel of Luke, Christ has returned to His hometown of Nazareth. While attending worship at was probably the synagouge he grew up in, He is asked to speak. After turning to the 61st chapter of Isaiah he begins to quote the prophet's words that would foretell the message Christ would continue to preach until his death on the cross, comfort, deliverance, and liberty. The Christ we see reading these words would not only continue to preach this message, but fulfill it as well.
April 30, 2017
Christ the Great Physician
After Christ casts out the unclean spirits from the man in the synagogue, Christ visits the home of Peter. Peter's mother-in-law is suffering from a great fever at the time of His arrival. Christ had already demonstrated His power and authority in facing those of the demonic realm, now he shows His authority over the physical realm of sickness. He enters into the house and places His hand upon this woman and she is immediately healed. The lesson from this scripture is twofold; Christ has the ability to heal, both then and now and her reaction was to immediately rise and serve.
June 18, 2017
Christ Heals the Leper
As Christ continued his ministry, a leper and therefore an outcast approaches Him for healing. Today, we take a look at the disease of leprosy and it's effects on the afflicted. These effects were manifested physically, socially, mentally, and even spiritually. Through the power of Jesus Christ, however, even this, the great plague of leprosy and it's associated problems, can't stand up to the healing touch of His hand.
November 13, 2016
Mary, Elizabeth, and the Holy Ghost
After learning of her own pregnancy, and that of her cousin Elizabeth, Mary quickly departs to see Elizabeth. What she encounters there is nothing less than an amazing outpouring of the Holy Ghost as we see this third person of the Godhead pour out himself in an incredible way. We see prophesying by Elizabeth. We see spiritual life from John (still in the womb). Most importantly we begin to see the main player in this intensive narrative emerge through the song of Mary, God himself.
November 27, 2016
Zacharias' Song of Praise
Zacharias had just experienced one of the greatest joys of life, the birth of his son. On the day of John's circumcision, Zacharias declares without question that his name was to be John. Immediately, the Lord restored Zacharias' hearing and speech. Zacharias could have said lots of things, but being filled with the Holy Ghost, he spoke praises to the God that had brought salvation. What are the first words we speak?
December 11, 2016
Riches to Rags
One of the most endearing plots in all of storytelling is the "rags to riches" narrative. Whether it be by word of mouth, in book form, or on the cinematic screen, we love to hear the story of one who has pulled himself up by the bootstraps and changed his life. Conversely, the "riches to rags" are a warning tale to us to keep our noses to the grindstone. Today, we look at the narrative of Jesus Christ, whose "riches to rags" story, brings us closer to understanding just what it was that Christ did for us.
December 25, 2016
A Proper Appreciation
Upon the birth of a child, so many things need to take place. Making sure the house is ready, proper medical care for the mother and child, and all the cultural activities surrounding the birth are all tasks that can take away from appreciating the heritage that God has blessed us with. In today's message, we take a look at the subsequent events of Christ's birth, and what the actions of Mary and Joseph can show us about properly appreciating this great blessing.
January 22, 2017
About my Father's Business Intro by Elder Dan Bryant
Closing out the story of the early life of Christ, Luke shares with us the story of Christ in the temple as a young boy questioning and answering the very best teachers of the Jews. After Joseph and Mary had searched for him for three days, His mother admonishes the young Jesus for going missing. Following this, we see Christ's first recorded words and the motivation behind every single thing He ever said or did, "Wist ye not that I must be about my Father's business."
February 12, 2017
I Am not Worthy
During John the Baptist's ministry, there were those that began to wonder if he were the Christ. But, just as we ought to do, John deflected the attention to the one that was to come; One who's shoes he was "not worthy to unloose". There was coming one that was greater than himself. It was this One that was to be the Christ. One that would baptize with the Holy Ghost and fire. Our prayer is that we would see ourselves as unworthy and Christ as He is.
February 26, 2017
Jesus: The Son of God
Intro by Bro. Noah Still
After some very encouraging words about God's provision by brother Noah (0:00-15:20), Elder Ford picks us up once again in the third chapter of Luke, where we see the genealogy of the Lord Jesus Christ through His mother Mary. But what is its significance? In this message we take a look, not so much at the listing of names itself, but the practical aspect of this lineage, which ends with these words, "...which was the son of God."
March 19, 2017
Jesus in Galilee
The Gospel of Luke picks up Christ's ministry as he journeys back to Galilee. At this point he had spent some time in Galilee before traveling south to Judea. By the time he returned to Galilee, word had spread of the demonstration of the power of the Spirit in his ministry and "there went out a fame of him..." Today we look at the account of what this fame that preceded His "homecoming" to Galilee was based upon, and what a this might have looked like from a historical perspective.
April 9, 2017
Christ Preaches in Nazareth (Part 2)
As we continue our look at Christ's time in the Nazarene synagogue, we see Him share with the Jews openly, and for the first time, his claim to be the Messiah by stating, "This day is this scripture fulfilled in your ears." The crowd, at this point, were amazed at these words until Christ continued his message with words that struck deep in the heart of them that were present. With the end of is sermon, the crowd, being filled with wrath rose up to toss him down the hillside intending to kill Him. Why? Simply put, it wasn't what they wanted to hear.
May 7, 2017
Christ Preaches at the Sea of Galilee
We open chapter 5 with Luke's account of Christ preaching on the shore of the Galilean Sea. As the multitude of people became so large to hear the word of God, it pressed Christ into teaching from Simon's boat. When Christ had finished his discourse, He asks Simon, who was completing his unsuccessful night of fishing, to cast out into the deep and drop his net. An initially reluctant Simon Peter does so and Christ rewards this obedience with the catch of his life. It is at this point that Peter determines to drop everything to follow the Son of God.
June 25, 2017
Healing the Body and Soul
(Intro: Bro. Noah Still)
In a full house in Galilee, a man is brought, by his friends, to Christ for healing. This great story of healing begins with the healing of this man's soul. As Christ sees this man in the midst of his affliction, He looks down and tells him to "be of good cheer, thy sins be forgiven thee." As comforting as it is to be healed of sickness, for the child of God the knowledge of the forgiveness of sins is much more so.
January 14, 2018
Coming Down from the Mountain
As the body of Christ, we are made up of many members. Whether rich or poor, young or old, married or single, we appreciate one another for who we are, sinners covered by the blood of Jesus Christ. A body requires all of its parts to serve different functions, with no part more important than any other. With a fully integrated environment, Bethany gives each of it's members the attention of the whole body, growing us together in the spirit of fellowship.
March 5, 2017
James 1:2-3, 12-16
In today's message, we take a look of the subject of temptation as it is presented in scripture. We begin and end our look at this subject in the epistle of James, where we are told to "Count it all joy when you fall into divers temptations." However, when looking at Christ's admonishment to the disciples in the garden we see Him warn of "entering into temptation". The question then becomes which of these views are we to take. The simple answer from today's sermon is to avoid entering into, but endure once we fall into temptation.
March 26, 2017
The Gift that Keeps on Giving
1 Timothy 3:10-13
On March 25, Bethany Church gave its blessing to a presbytery to ordain 2 of our men to the office of Deacon, David Lawrence and Ken Brenner. With respect to this wonderful occasion, Elder Ford shares with us that although we have asked these two men to fill the office of a servant within the church, that we are all commanded by God to "neglect not the gift that is in thee." However these gifts may vary, they are given us for God's glory and the edification of His people. Furthermore, by serving one another, we are serving HIm.
May 14, 2017
Old Church Pews
On this Mother's Day Sunday, we take a break from the Gospel of Luke to talk about "Old Church Pews". This might seem like an odd subject, but there are characteristics of these objects that can relate to us as children of God. Today, we attempt to share with you the story of these "Old Church Pews", and the story of our lives.
Fishers of Men
May 21, 2017
Fishers of Men- 1
Matthew 4:19, Mark 1:16, Luke 5:10
In our last look at Luke, we see Christ tell Simon and Andrew that "...from henceforth, thou shalt catch men." As we look at the other accounts of this event, where we see the familiar phrase, "Fishers of Men", we begin our series on what it takes to be fishers of men. This includes: the Lord's providential preparation, His specific selection of them, our willingness to follow, and the type of relationship we have with Him.
June 4, 2017
Fishers of Men- 3
Matthew 4:19, Mark 1:16, Luke 5:10
Unfortunately, today's sermon did not record. We continued, however, our thoughts on being fishers of men by attempting to answer two questions. What are we fishing for? The answer to this lies in the word "catch" which means to take alive. The fish we attempt to catch must first be made alive. The second question, where do we fish, is answered most simply by Christ's direction to the disciples initially at the beginning of their discipleship and at the events after Christ's resurrection on the seashore. Christ directed them where to drop their nets. Upon heeding His direction, they caught more than they could draw.
May 28, 2017
Fishers of Men- 2
Matthew 4:19, Mark 1:16, Luke 5:10
Today we continue our look at the subjects of "Fishers of Men" by trying to define, scripturally, who qualifies as fishers of men. Certainly the apostles and ministers can be titled with this phrase, but what about others. Today we look at the account of several disciples who could fit into this category while fitting the aspects of preparation, selection, willingness, and discipleship spoken of last week.
June 11, 2017
Fishers of Men- 4
Matthew 4:19, Mark 1:16, Luke 5:10
Today's message draws close to home for Elder Ford as he returns from a fishing trip with his own son. In this final message in our "Fishers of Men" series, we take a look at these questions from a biblical perspective: What bait is biblical? and What do we do with those that are caught? Early in church history, we see an abundance of signs and wonders that faded as this first century ended. God's word promised something better than these though, charity. Finishing up, we look at the 12th chapter of Romans to identify the "live well" of charity we are to show our fellow brethren.