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The latest at First Baptist Church

Stay up to date with the happenings of First Baptist Church by visiting our blog. You'll find information such as announcements, sermon notes and thoughts from our pastor to encourage and challenge your walk with the Lord.

Joseph: An Example of Suffering and Patience

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

09/25/2022

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James repeatedly commands patience in suffering and points to the prophets and Job as examples. They were blessed for their steadfastness, and God showed them compassion and mercy (James 5:7–11). One such a prophet is Joseph who received and interpreted dreams from God. A survey of Genesis 37–50 shows us Joseph’s suffering, patience, and steadfastness, and it shows us God’s compassion and mercy.

Suffering and Patience: When Joseph was “seventeen years old” (Gen 37:2), he wa

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How to Raise a Worthless Child

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

09/18/2022

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The book of 1 Samuel begins with a contrast between Samuel and the sons of Eli, Hophni and Phinehas. Whereas Samuel would grow to be a godly boy and young man (cf. 1 Sam 1:28; 2:11, 18–21, 26; 3:19–4:1), Hophni and Phinehas were very sinful. 

Notice the sins of these sons. They were generally “worthless men” and “did not know the Lord” (1 Sam 2:17). They showed themselves irreverent bullies and gluttons by eating sacrificial meat with its fat and taking it by force (1 Sam 2

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A Ministry of Integrity: 1 Thessalonians 2:1–12

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

09/11/2022

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Paul’s first letter to the Thessalonians briefly describes how the messengers delivered the gospel with power, Spirit, and conviction (1 Thess 1:5). Paul describes his ministry again in detail in 1 Thess 2:1–12. Several themes stand out.

First, in speaking about himself and his fellow missionaries, Paul’s primary concern was to uphold the integrity of the gospel of God. He spoke of “our coming to you,” which involved “boldness in our God to declare to you the gospel of God”

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Discerning the Will of God

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

09/04/2022

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What is the will of God? Will He tell me? Can I find it? How do I figure it out? These questions press upon us when we need to make significant decisions, and I’ve found it helpful to speak of God’s will in the terms you find below. 

Decree: God decreed all things in eternity past, whether good or evil. 

God decreed all things in the counsel of His will in eternity past (cf. Eph 1:11). Everything that happens is His will by His decree. Whatever His reason may be for allowing

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Why God’s People Need Passionate Preaching

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

08/28/2022

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One of the reasons that Paul expressed thanks to God for the Thessalonians was that he knew God loved them and had chosen them for salvation (1 Thess 1:2, 4). Paul based his knowledge of God’s love and choice on their exemplary conversion (cf. 1 Thess 1:6–10). He also based this knowledge on how the gospel came to them. He knew God chose them “because our gospel came to you not only in word, but also in power and in the Holy Spirit and with full conviction” (1 Thess 1:5). 

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1 and 2 Thessalonians in the Timeline of Acts 16–18

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

08/21/2022

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Acts 15:36–18:22 records Paul’s second missionary journey in AD 49–51. Paul and Silas were the only two when the journey began (Acts 15:40–41). Timothy joined them in Lystra (Acts 16:1–5), and Luke joined them in Troas as well (Acts 16:10, notice Luke says “we”). The four went to Philippi, apparently left Luke behind (cf. Acts 17:1, “we” becomes “they”), and arrived in Thessalonica in AD 49. 

While in Thessalonica, Paul spent three Sabbaths in the synagogue (Acts 17:2). Dur

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Forsaking Sinful Ambition and Fostering Humility Instead

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

08/14/2022

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Imagine telling a group of people that you had a month to live. Instead of comforting you, some of them ask for your most valuable possessions, angering the others because they didn’t ask first. Or, imagine that after your death, everyone started looking for your wallet or figuring out who would take your television. As a police chaplain, I’ve seen some interesting responses to the news of someone’s death. 

Jesus experienced something like this once upon a time. For a third

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What’s in a Name?

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

08/07/2022

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This past week, on the basis of Paul (and others) introducing himself by his first name (e.g., Colossians 1:1), mentioning his office along the way (apostle), and then closing his letters with his name (e.g., Colossians 4:18), all of that was to say—any adults can call me “Dave” in personal conversation as you so desire. Kids, I suppose you can call me Pastor Huff or Pastor Dave. Funny thing, nobody called me anything for the rest of the day after I said what I said. Ha!

Wh

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Epaphras: An Example for Us Today

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

07/24/2022

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A little digging in Colossians discovers some details about Epaphras, a minor character in the New Testament, but a main character in Colossae and an exemplary leader for us today. Two passages tell us about him, Colossians 1:3–8 and 4:12–13.

A Faithful Evangelist (Colossians 1:3–8): Paul reminded the Colossians that Epaphras taught them the gospel, noting him to be “our beloved fellow servant” and “a faithful minister of Christ on your behalf” (Colossians 1:7; cf. 1:5). Ep

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Philemon: An Example of Forgiveness

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

07/17/2022

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During Paul’s imprisonment in Rome (Philemon 1; cf. Acts 28:30–31), a slave named Onesimus stole from Philemon and ran away (cf. Philemon 18–19). Philemon’s wife Apphia and his son Archippus would have known about the situation, and the church that met in their house was likely aware as well (cf. Philemon 2). Onesimus’s sins affected many.

As time went on, Onesimus somehow found Paul in Rome, and Paul led him to saving faith in Christ (cf. Philemon 10). As much as Paul want

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Taking Some Tips from Tychicus

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

07/10/2022

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The name Tychicus comes to us five times in Scripture. An examination of each mention gives us a picture of Christian service in the early church, which functions as an example for us today.

The first mention is in Acts 20:4, a list of Paul’s companions on his third missionary journey (AD 52–57), including “the Asians, Tychicus and Trophimus.” 

The second and third mentions were written from prison in Rome (AD 60 or 61). To the Colossians, Paul stated, “Tychicus will tell yo

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Three Characteristics of Followers of Jesus

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

07/03/2022

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Sometimes people never get quite out of the gate to follow Jesus. They see the benefits and blessings of serving Christ and speak of doing so themselves, but they lack true commitment and either stay or stray away. I’m sure we could rifle through Scripture to discover a hundred characteristics of true followers of Jesus, but I’ll limit myself to three as found in Luke 9:57–62.

In this passage, the theme is clearly why people fail to follow Jesus. Whether people say they wil

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A Personal Word on Ecclesiastical Relationships

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

06/26/2022

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As the pastor of our church, I’m sometimes asked if our church is formally associated with any kind of ecclesiastical group. The answer is no, we are not. Our church began in 1838 and joined the Illinois Baptist General Association in 1845. Our association was lumped into the Northern Baptist Convention (NBC) in 1908. Due to liberalism, we left the NBC in 1947 to join the Conservative Baptist Association (CBA) and then left the CBA in 1968 for similar reasons. We joined th

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Preaching the Whole Counsel of God

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

06/19/2022

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Lord willing, we will wrap up Colossians soon and move on to 1 and 2 Thessalonians. How do we determine what to preach from Sunday to Sunday and over the course of time? 

First, we try to get through “everything” every three to five years.

Paul taught the church in Ephesus “the whole counsel of God” in “three years” (Acts 20:27, 31), giving us something of a pastoral philosophy. Every few years should include a full-orbed understanding of the gospel, broader themes in the Bi

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Some Thoughts on Music from Ephesians 5:19 and Colossians 3:16

by: Pastor David Huffstutler

06/05/2022

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First, congregational singing is imperative. Ephesians 5:19 details how the congregation engages in Spirit-filled worship (cf. Eph 5:18), and Colossians 3:16 focuses on how the word of Christ dwells richly among the body in its singing. Singing is an imperative means of how to let the word of Christ dwell richly in us and how to live a Spirit-filled life. 

Second, worship is not entertainment, a performance by some for the enjoyment of a congregation that never participates

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