Welcome to the First Baptist Church of Adrian!

We are a community of people dedicated to follow Jesus in all that we do. If you’re looking for a church committed to loving God, loving each other, teaching his word, and worshiping him, then we invite you to come join us at any of our worship gatherings and activities for adults, youth, and children (see our About page and Activities page). Also, if you’re looking to learn more about Jesus and what it means to be his follower, I would love the chance to talk with you (also, see our About page for contact information, or see our Follow Jesus page).

Check out our site, read the blog posts below for news updates and devotional posts, and check out one of our worship gatherings!

~ Pastor Mike

Sunday Morning Schedule
9:45am ~ Small Groups / Sunday School
10:45 am ~ Worship Gathering

Praying the Bible ~ Psalm 141:3-4

Praying through verses or passages of the Bible is a great way to help you pray according to the will and desires of God. Below is a passage of Scripture and a sample prayer. I would encourage you to pray that prayer, or, even better, read the passage and pray as God leads you.

Text: Psalm 141:3-4
Lord, set up a guard for my mouth; keep watch at the door of my lips. Do not let my heart turn to any evil thing or perform wicked acts with men who commit sin. Do not let me feast on their delicacies. (Christian Standard Bible)

Father, the tongue is a fire impossible to control, James wrote, and from the heart the mouth speaks, Jesus said. Father, guard my words by guarding my heart. So often the temptation is to gossip or to speak unkind things about another, yet as with Isaiah, through Jesus you atone for the sin of my lips. May the words of my mouth honor you and edify others. Protect my heart. When I am tempted or thoughtless, by your grace steer me from sin. When, in the moment, the temptations seem more pleasant, remind my heart of the greater pleasures to be found in you. Amen.

Be the Samaritan

This post is part of a devotional series based on our 2019 Bible Reading Calendar.

With the parables that Jesus told, he often subverted a person’s expectations. The story of the Good Samaritan is no different. In Luke 10:25-37, an expert of the Mosaic Law asked what he must do to inherit eternal life. Jesus asked him how he read the Law and the man answered that one should love God with his entire being and love his neighbor as himself. When Jesus told him that he had answered correctly, the man “wanted to justify himself” and asked, “Who is my neighbor?”

It seems obvious that the man had people in his life who he thought didn’t deserve his love. Love your neighbor, sure, but there must be exceptions. How often do we think the same? Loving people who treat us well and love us back is fairly easy. But what about those who we don’t like or who don’t like us? What about those who require our resources but can’t pay us back? Surely, there are exceptions and these don’t count as neighbors, right?

Jesus then told a story with four main characters: An injured man, beaten, robbed, and left for dead; as well as a priest, a Levite, and a Samaritan. It is presumed that the injured man was a Jew, since he was traveling out of Jerusalem, so who better to help him than fellow Jews, and especially religious leaders (kind of like this expert in the Law)? Yet, when each saw the injured man, they passed by on the other side. They saw a person in need and a looked away.

It was the Samaritan who stopped, helped the man, and paid for his care. Significant here, is the fact, that culturally the Jews and Samaritans were opposed to each other for a variety of reasons. Most Jews had little respect for Samaritans and most Samaritans felt the same toward the Jews.

Once he finished telling the story, Jesus asked, “Which of these three do you think proved to be a neighbor?” The expert in the Law couldn’t even bring himself to say the word “Samaritan” and instead said, “The one who showed mercy.”

Jesus replied, “Go and do likewise.” In other words: Be the Samaritan.

When we read this, we should understand two things: 1) Our “neighbor” we are to love is anyone we encounter, especially those in need of help; 2) Love, mercy, and compassion are not to be affected by backgrounds and perceptions–it doesn’t matter if a person is a different ethnicity, age, class, gender, religion, orientation, etc., the love we have for others through Jesus should know no bounds. When we encounter a person in need, our concern should not be Who are they? Nor, What have they done? Nor, What benefit do I gain? But, How can I help?

You can love someone without agreeing with them. You can love someone without being the same. You can love someone even if you feel they need to change. After all, no matter who they are or where they come from, they are exactly like us in that they are fellow human beings, made in the image of God, and in need of the grace of Jesus.

Show them grace. Show them love. Be the Samaritan.

All Scripture taken from the Christian Standard Bible.

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Celebrating the Lord

This post is part of a devotional series based on our 2019 Bible Reading Calendar.

First Chronicles 29 records some of the concluding events of King David’s life and reign, before Solomon became fully established as his successor. David had wanted to build a temple within the midst of Jerusalem to house the Ark of the Covenant and honor God. God spoke to David through the prophet Nathan, however, that he was not to be the one to build a house for God but he would have a son to carry out this feat.

Understanding this to be Solomon, David decided to prepare what he could. Chapter 29 opens with a list of contributions, including what David himself gave. Then, with the people assembled together, David prayed to God to dedicate the contributions and for the sake of Solomon.

After the prayer, we are told that the people “ate and drank with great joy in the Lord’s presence that day” (29:22).

The people celebrated the Lord, an act that should be a part of our spiritual habits as well. Yes, there are appropriate times of fasting and sorrow before God. The Bible even contains a book called Lamentations. Difficult situations arise that call for crying out to the Lord in pain and sorrow. And we should be saddened by our sin. Yes, there are appropriate times for contemplation. In an increasingly busy world, we need those quiet moments spent before the Lord without noise and distraction. Yes, the Bible even speaks of the Christian’s call to self-denial.

But that does not mean that our lives are more holy when defined by asceticism and spiritual austerity.

Throughout the Old Testament, while there were fasts, there were also feasts. The New Testament is no stranger to this, either. In Acts 2, the church is described as gathering daily to share meals together. Then in Revelation 19, eternity kicks off with a feast given by God, a celebratory marriage supper.

God created laughter and he intends that we find happiness in him. Our lives, therefore, should have regular moments of celebration. After all, we are loved by an infinitely good God as a Father loves and cherishes his children. Through Jesus, we have been rescued from the despair of sin and the sorrow of death, to be brought into an eternal joy. So, while we might have moments of sorrow until we fully realize the newness of eternity, let us not neglect to have plenty of moments where we eat and drink with great joy in the Lord’s presence.

All Scripture quotations taken from the Christian Standard Bible.

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Praying the Bible ~ 1 Thessalonians 1:3

Praying through verses or passages of the Bible is a great way to help you pray according to the will and desires of God. Below is a passage of Scripture and a sample prayer. I would encourage you to pray that prayer, or, even better, read the passage and pray as God leads you.

Text: 1 Thessalonians 1:3
We recall, in the presence of our God and Father, your work produced by faith, your labor motivated by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ. (Christian Standard Bible)

Father, Paul wrote elsewhere that faith, hope, and love, these three remain. Faith in Jesus through the gospel, hope in Jesus for eternal life and joy, and love through Jesus for you and others–may these be the enduring marks of my life. Throughout the years, and when my life-story on this earth is done, may I be remembered (by those who remember) for faith, hope, and love above all else. May I act each day in faith. May I work to serve others in love. May hope drive me from opening my eyes in the morning to closing my eyes at night. May this life be all for you though the Lord Jesus. Amen.

No Fear in Judgement

This post is part of a devotional series based on our 2019 Bible Reading Calendar.

One of the saddest things that I’ve heard from other Christians is a fear of standing before God, a fear of judgement. Some seem to think that the final judgment will involve God reminding us of all the bad things we have done before he lets us enter the joys of eternity, almost like an embarrassing rite-of-passage.

We often don’t help ourselves in this, as I’ve heard preachers use the illustration of God asking us, “Why should I let you into my heaven,” then leaving us to sweat it out until Jesus replies, “Because I took their sin.”

But this is not at all how followers of Jesus should think of final judgment. Now, don’t get me wrong, for those who have rejected Jesus and chosen to stand in their own sinful rebellion, judgement will come with fear. But followers of Jesus will not stand before God with God’s piercing eye’s almost condemning us as the record of our sin is read for all to hear until Jesus steps to the plate for us.

The Bible, after all, tells us that our record of sin was already dealt with 2000 years ago.

In Colossians 2:13-14, Paul wrote:

And when you were dead in trespasses and in the uncircumcision of your flesh, he made you alive with him and forgave us all our trespasses. He erased the certificate of debt, with its obligations, that was against us and opposed to us, and has taken it away by nailing it to the cross.

Paul’s description of Jesus’ death drips with this beautiful truth that he says elsewhere: “Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus” (Romans 8:1).

The Father will not grill us with questions of why we belong in his heavenly Kingdom while he rehearses a listing of our sins. Instead, through Christ, he has already said to us, “What list?”

He is the Father who loves us, and yes, who is grieved by our sin. But he is compassionate and he will not embarrass us or make us squirm. This is why Jesus said his faithful will be greeted with the words, “Well done!” (Matthew 25:21). This is why John could write, “There is no fear in love; instead, perfect love drives out fear” (1 John 4:18).

There is no love more perfect than that which the Father has for his beloved children. Thus, in Christ, we can stand in humble confidence without the fear of judgment.

Scripture quotes taken from the Christian Standard Bible.

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Praying the Bible ~ Psalms 126:1-3

Praying through verses or passages of the Bible is a great way to help you pray according to the will and desires of God. Below is a passage of Scripture and a sample prayer. I would encourage you to pray that prayer, or, even better, read the passage and pray as God leads you.

Text: Psalm 126:1-3
When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion, we were like those who dream. Our mouths were filled with laughter then, and our tongues with shouts of joy. Then they said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.” The Lord had done great things for us; we were joyful. (Christian Standard Bible)

Father, you are the Awesome God and Source of eternal treasures. You have given us abundantly, infinitely more than we deserve by giving us your Son. Father, fill our thoughts and dreams with the hopes and joys of eternity. May we be filled with laughter and joy because of our salvation. May the world around us look at our lives and realize that you have done great things for us. May our joy in Christ be contagious and open doors for many others to trust in Jesus and share our hope. Amen.

Pray for Those in Authority

As we get ready to celebrate the Fourth of July, the birthday of our nation, let us remember the Bible’s admonition to pray for our leaders. In 1 Timothy 2:1-2, Paul wrote:

First of all, then, I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgivings be made for everyone, for kings and all those who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.

Though the “authority” in our nation is meant to lie with the voters and the ballot box, we elect leaders to represent us. Therefore, we pray for our president, representatives, senators, governors, mayors, etc. This is true regardless of their political affiliation and views. As followers of Jesus, our political leaders should have our prayers.

Here are some things to pray, based on the book of Proverbs:

1. Pray our leaders would be men and women of strong moral character. Proverbs 29:2&4 state: “When the righteous flourish, the people rejoice; but when the wicked rule, people groan… By justice a king brings stability to a land; but a person who demands ‘contributions’ demolishes it.”

2. Pray that our leaders would show true concern for the poor, needy, and oppressed in the land. Proverbs 29:7&14 state: “The righteous person knows the rights of the poor, but the wicked one does not understand these concerns… A king who judges the poor with fairness–his throne will be established forever.”

3. Pray that our leaders would humbly desire to grow in knowledge and truth. Proverbs 28:16 & 29:12 state: “A leader who lacks understanding is very oppressive, but one who hates dishonest profit prolongs his life… If a ruler listens to lies, all his officials will be wicked.”

4. Pray that our leaders would be men and women who genuinely love and value others. Proverbs 20:28 & 29:8 state: “Loyalty and faithfulness guard a king; through loyalty he maintains his throne… Mockers inflame a city but the wise turn away anger.”

5. Finally, pray that our leaders would learn to fear (revere and respect) God, and especially that they would hear the Gospel, trust in Jesus, and follow his ways. Proverbs 1:7 states: “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge.”

All scripture quotes taken from the Christian Standard Bible.

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