The people of Israel came out of Egypt under the cloud and passed through the sea. We eat spiritual meat and drink from the Rock. We were made for exchange in life and the Word. 1 (Corinthians 10:1-5; Philippians 4:1; 1 Thessalonians 2:17)
Speaker(s): Pastor Thomas Schaller
7:00 PM on 3/17/2021
P. Schaller –
Okay, great. Turn to 1 Corinthians 10 tonight. Many of you know that the health department visited us on Sunday and
shut us down, closed us down. That’s on the door. The notice is on the door. I want to speak
about that a little bit tonight and more deeply what you and I are a part of because of God’s
grace given to us through Jesus Christ. It’s amazing. Amen! Some of you maybe have never
been in a situation like this where the city or government makes a decision and then we as
Christians with pure hearts and good motives want to do the right thing. For us, it’s our faith. It’s
our religion. This is our religion. I want to use that word tonight as I speak about our church life.
It’s so important and what I have seen through the years is that the Holy Spirit has been
teaching us and we become alive. We read that in Titus 3:5, Romans 8:11 and many other verses. I
want to kind of in a relaxed way talk to you from my heart from the Scripture about what is
happening here. The good news is that I feel that all of us know what is happening here
because we started on this particular chapter of our journey a year ago, and we were wearing
masks. This chapel was empty.
P. Scibelli was here. We had a band and we preached to an empty room for about 10 weeks I believe. Then we had the Zoom meetings and so on. Then we went out in the parking lot and we said come. Easter. We’re going to have a parking lot and we did. Then Scotty Dubay, and the beautiful thing about where we are at is that we are a team. I’m
so honored and so blessed to have such unity with so many people with love in our hearts and
good intentions. So we preached from the roof. Remember that? We honored protocols. We
had Ryan Reagan giving out coffee and donuts and the team, the cafe team and we were
always interested in connecting with people. Always interested in how are they doing? What’s
their name? Ministry. Because God has given us a certain kind, a certain way of life. Certain
convictions about things. Love. Wisdom. Message after message. The Bible. Being excited.
World missions. Chris Moore texted me a few minutes ago with photos from his mission trip in
Iraq. Just seeing many people in that city and he said it’s the most open place I have ever been.
They stop us in the street.
They love Americans. They ask us questions. They follow us around.
This is the Kurdistan part, the northern part of Iraq. We have a mission and our assembly is
important to us. In my heart, this is the key, in my heart when somebody comes to the door and
they don’t have a mask on and they don’t want to wear one, then in my heart I say you’re
welcome. You can come in. You can sit here and those that are with masks can sit there. Why
do I say that? Because that’s how I feel about it. That’s how I feel the work goes. That’s what I
believe that it’s not necessary. Why? How can you prove it? I cannot prove it and I do not care
about talking about it in the pulpit. You can study it out and through the year we have made a lot
of efforts. We canceled Eurocon. We canceled Convention. We canceled Camp Life. We
canceled the Easter Play, didn’t we? Last year? We’ve made the effort. Numbers have gone up
and they’ve gone back down. We have herd immunity maybe. Many of us don’t care about it
anymore. We are hugging and kissing and embracing and living.
So we are assembling tonight simply because we want to hear the Word. We want to see each other. We want to encourage each other. One of the trustees said last night in our trustees/elders meeting we had last night
as we discussed these issues together. Not all the elders were there. We had invited them but it
was a spontaneous meeting. One of the trustees said we have two major health problems in the
country: covid and mental health. We have a mental health crisis in our country. In our religion,
people are important. I mean people. Talking. Not from six feet from each other, but in a relaxed
way listening, caring. The Bible has much to say about it. Tonight, I want to speak a couple
points. One of them is how they left Egypt and in a way, how we live our life. Turn to 1 Corinthians
10:1. How do we leave Egypt? How did we become missionaries? How did we have a changed
life? We have a young lady down here. I forgot her name. Kennedy. Is this your fifth night or
sixth night maybe? Fifth night. This young lady, Kennedy, this is her fifth night. She talked to me
the other night for a few minutes.
That person’s life, that is what this is about. It’s about God.
God meeting people. God loving people through people. This is not a bar room. This is not
Home Depot. This is not a bowling alley. This is not the Baltimore Oriole stadium. What’s that
called? Camden Yards. This is a church. This is a church. This is a church. When we come in
here, God is in charge. God gave gifts unto men. I am a pastor teacher. I cannot reject someone
at the door if they don’t want to wear a mask. They come from a Communist country. I don’t
wear masks. I don’t want to wear a mask. Can I come in? No, you can’t come in? You cannot
come in? Go home. Go watch it on Zoom. No, you cannot come in here. It’s not allowed. You cannot come in here. I cannot do that. I can’t do that. I don’t believe that. Because I believe
Psalm 91 says he that dwells under the shadow of the Almighty dwells in the secret place of the
Most High. Many of us have been blessed by God because we are in the shadow of the
Almighty. And that sitting under with God in the fellowship with the gifts that God has given to
the Body. So that’s what happened when they came out of Egypt. It is.
That’s what happened when they came out. It’s how Chris Moore got to Iraq. It’s how God said to the church in
Philadelphia I open a door and nobody can close it. By the way, we’ve been in parts of the world
that some people couldn’t get in but God opened a door. We’ve been in the Soviet Union. We’ve
been in many other places. We’ve been in Islamic countries. We’ve had open doors from God.
This is about God. Not about people. This is about God. Isn’t that amazing! It is. We got brought
up in it. We are growing in it, feeling it. Mental health. We spoke last service, I think it was
Sunday, on therapy. We talked about the church is a vehicle of therapy for people. The church
is a place where I get loved, where I am encouraged. The church is a place where somebody
listens to me. The church is a place where I feel I’m helped or honored. You know my name.
You know my name. Kennedy. You know my name. Greet one another by name it says. When
we have our communion, do we take our masks off? Yes, we have to. How can we eat with it
on? We have to. When we drink the wine, what do we do? When we sing, how do we sing? I
love it. We sing. We sing. I don’t want to be conscious of any disease.
This is where I am today. Look at our year and have we made the effort. Have we tried? Are we submitted in our heart
and spirit? Yes. But as I said, whenever it was in December, I’m done. I’m done. I’m finished. I’m
done. I’m looking to God with you. We have a mission. We are making disciples. We are
teaching the Bible. We are growing in our faith. We are being prepared for more, whatever the
Lord has for us. I just want to say that in principle. 1 Corinthians 10:1 He’s going to tell them something.
He’s going to share something practical with them for the church at Corinth. I want you to realize
something. I want you to see something. You can’t be ignorant about something. You have to
know your life is bigger than your house and your job and the third place you go to or the fourth
place you go to. Some people have hobbies and so on. Many of us have church. My home, my
church, my job. That’s how we may live, but there are people that don’t have a church life. vs. 1.
That’s in a way, how we live too. We go through the Red Sea. When they came out of Egypt,
there was a cloud over them. The cloud was light to the Jews and darkness to the Egyptians.
The Egyptians are after the Jews but it’s kind of dark.
The Jews are under the cloud and passing through the Red Sea. Question: Do you believe that about your life tonight? Do you believe that there is something more about your life than just your paycheck and your house
and your dog? Do you believe that you are under the cloud, that you passed through the sea
through life. This is a kind of metaphor for going through life. vs. 2. Somehow, it happened
through Moses. Moses was the man. I want a man of God in my life. They help me. I got a man
of God in my life, have had, continue to have in my heart and we have. We have a ministry. It
helps me. Helps me with my problems with myself. My bad habits. It helps me with my
friendships. It helps me with my finances. It helps me with making decisions. I’m baptized unto
Moses. vs. 2-3. Looks like there are three things there: Moses, in the cloud, and in the sea.
That’s the man of God, the Body of Christ, the cloud, that extra help that comes from God
through the – called the sea, life. vs. 3. Spiritual food. That’s how we got through it. Spiritual
food. That’s how we survive. Spiritual food. That’s what happens to us. We have a lot of
forgiveness in our heart. A lot of faith. We seek righteousness and truth.
We eat spiritual food. Life of faith, isn’t it? vs. 4. amen! Wow! How did they get through? Christ. They drank of a
spiritual Rock, Christ. They got through it. We said – remember I said some months ago that I
was concerned because we are not being called a cult anymore. We haven’t been in the
newspapers and we’re not getting in any trouble. I’m concerned. Are we really walking with
God? Well, God answered my prayer! He did it! Thank you, Lord! Yes, keep praying. Yes, he
does. A year ago, we said maybe people are thinking – a year ago, we go into lock down and
it’s going to get better and maybe not we said. Remember? Maybe it will get worse and worse.
Maybe it will. But look what we just read. That Rock that follows us is Christ. That door he opens
and no man can shut. That’s world missions. That’s disciples. That’s people that are not
ashamed of my name. They embrace my Word. They have a little strength. They have not
denied my name. Those are the people that believe that sin is sin.
Just for a little off step thing here. Somebody told me about cross dressing, some man dressing as a woman and so on and they said something about it. I go, you know that’s against the law of Moses and they said I didn’t know that. I want to show it to you. Cause I want to talk to everybody here. Deuteronomy 22:5,
probably nobody here has that problem but I want you to see something. Why don’t you if you
are a young person read the Bible and ask God to speak to you from his law? I love the law the
psalmist said. I delight in your law. It warns me. It guides me. It keeps me back from
presumptuous sin in psalm 19. I want to show you something. You think it’s funny a man
dresses like a woman or a woman like a man? Look at Deuteronomy 22:5. There you go. What do you
think about that? Could it be more clear? That’s the kind of church you go to where you read the
Bible and we talk about these things and try to understand that verse. Why? Why is that wrong?
It says it’s an abomination to do it. Wonder why? I think if you hang out in the church and the
Holy Spirit will teach you, you’ll know why.
You’ll understand it. He says, “open my eyes that I might behold wondrous things out of thy law.” There is something wonderful in it. You have to embrace it. Come on! Embrace it! I don’t care about what our culture is or what is going on. Is it obvious to us yet? That this world is like a sea that we pass through. We’re passing through a
world of trouble and they hate Christ. The world hates Christ. The world is evil. The world hates
Christ. Let’s go back to – did that stimulate you? Maybe someone was sleeping so I just threw
that in there! 1 Corinthians 10:5, how many? Many of them he was not well pleased. vs. 6. this story is
an example for us that the intent we should not lust after evil things. Lusting after evil things.
Calling what is bitter sweet. Calling good evil and evil good and corruption and power and
money and fashion and popularity and acceptance. Many things we lust after in our flesh. But
these are written that we would understand that in the Holy Spirit we would not lust after those
things. We would seek God. Not have the love of the world but we would have the love of God,
not the love of the world. But the love for God. Wow. In the morning devotional this morning, we
used Mark 13. When the disciples were leaving Jerusalem, they said look at the temple building.
Isn’t it amazing. Look at the building and the stones.
They were amazed at the building and Jesus said not one stone would be left upon another. I parallel it to everything man makes. Look at the architecture. Look at the technology. Look at the cars. Look at the governments. Look at
the globalism. Look at the economies. Everything is so incredible. Look at the satellites in outer
space. And God could say the same thing. Do you see these things? There’s an end but the
love of God, that has no end. That love, the love of God, keeps us from evil. A man that rules –
look at 2 Samuels 23. David said this. vs. 3. He that rules over men must be just ruling in the fear of
God. The fear of God. Rulers. Warning! Warning to Herod by the Baptist. It’s not lawful for you
to have your brother’s wife. Mark 6:19. okay. I’m taking his head off. There was a saint in
England, Henry VIII had murdered his second wife, beheaded her, and Hugh Latimer was the
Christian. King Henry had him come before him. Hugh Latimer was stumbling because he knew
but he said he had to say the truth. He had to say the truth. It’s beautiful. And he survived. King
Henry VIII did not decide to execute him but Henry VIII Bloody Mary, his daughter, did. She took
him out and burned him at the stake. Evil in leadership.
Evil in my heart. Evil in the activities of men. It’s a very real thing. And Pharaoh in Egypt, but Pharaoh could not find the Jews because they were under a cloud with Moses going through the Red Sea. There was something rich and
deep. They were drinking and eating spiritual food. But with man of them, God was not well
pleased. That’s a warning to us, to the church. These are amazing thoughts. Let me finish. Go
with me to Philippians 4:1. I think that the love we have for each other is behind everything – God is
behind everything I’m saying. Not in the sense that everything I am saying is from God but in the
sense that we’re pointing to God to be the answer for our life. Then having God in our life, we
love each other. Because we love each other, we yearn and long for each other. Philippians 4:1,
there’s very strong words of affection here. My brethren, dearly beloved. Did any of you hear P.
Gromov during Eurocon on the video? He’s like a big teddy bear, a grandfather, a spiritual
grandfather, a man of wisdom and love and a lot of experience. He shared his testimony and he
enjoyed it as he was telling it. We enjoyed it as we listened.
Psalm 68:1, so we love Him. We love brothers and sisters in India. P. Stan. The Latinos. We love our brothers and sisters. I long for them Paul said in vs. 1. Longing for. Do you long for your brother and your sister? When the
family is happy, we long for that. I want to see my father at the train station when the train pulls
in. I’ll be leaning out the window a young boy could say. A man in a war with bombs bursting in
air may just pull out a photo of his wife and little daughter. Longs for. Long for a family member.
I long for you. That’s what he said. I long for you. Some of us have been abroad planting
churches and those people that I think about every day in Hungary and in Finland, two places
where I was very much involved but other places too. I want you to understand that this is our religion. Our religion is longing for your face. Paul said that to the Thessalonians. He wants to
see their face. He told them greet one another with a holy kiss. He said to the Philippians and
he planted a church there and left, but it’s kind of like, I’m so honored to be a part of your church
and I care about you by name.
In Romans 16, I believe there’s 37 names written in that chapter to a city that he’s never been to yet. Some of those names are with him in his travel, are with him in Corinth, are with him, but he’s filled with names because this is our religion. It’s faces. It’s names. It’s communion. It’s hugging. It’s kissing. It’s walking. It’s evangelizing. It’s believing. It’s
serving each other. What would happen to a church if they never meet? We’re going to see. We
are seeing because they’re shut down. One church, one big church here in Baltimore, is going
to shut down until 2022. I don’t understand. You’re kidding me? You’re kidding me? You’ve got
to be kidding me? Paul said in 2 Timothy 1, Onesimus sought me out in Rome very diligently and
he was not ashamed of my chain. Translation: If you are going to go find a guy who is in chains,
it might be better that you stay away from him because you might end up in chains next to him.
But he wasn’t ashamed of his chain. He wasn’t afraid of that label. He wasn’t afraid of it. That’s
the thing that the devil hates is our faith, our courage, our authority. We have a cloud that’s
leading and guiding us through the Red Sea.
He hates it when we say Christ is the answer. He hates it when we assemble together and love each other to the point where we long for. Philippians 4:1 those are two labels. Longed for is three. You’re my joy. I’m very much joyful over you. I’m joyful over you. I have that. Isn’t that amazing. And crown. What’s that? Five titles. Let’s go to
one last one in Thessalonians. I think so. I read it in a different translation so I’ve got to work to
get it. 1 Thessalonians 2:17, We’re not with you in presence for a short time. I have to say the other side
of this is that the brothers and sisters that are wearing masks and assembling, many of them, I
thank God for them. I applauded them. This is just the way I am living and how they live that’s
before them and God. I’m very thankful. Or they are not in presence. They are doing it another
way. I don’t want you to hear me in the wrong way. I’m thankful. There’s not any dividing point
here in my mind regarding the brothers and the sisters. Its not about that. It’s about our hearts.
It’s about love. It’s about our faith. Paul said I’m away from you in presence but not in heart. And
thank God for all those pastors and workers that are ministering to the flock and caring for the
flock, but the flock doesn’t need politics.
The flock needs Christ, the spiritual Rock that follows us and builds us up in our faith. And we are able to say as we pass through the sea, Jesus is with us. That’s the idea. Amen. Go to vs. 17. What is that? I really labored very hard to see you. I really did. I wanted to see you. That means after we get through this time, some of our people
will be getting on planes and flying to different parts of the world because we endeavor to see
the people in Thailand and the Philippines and Korea and Africa and so on. We endeavor in that
in the Body together or across the street. But what did he say? Endeavor to see your face with
great desire. Can’t you see a face with a mask on? Absolutely. Yes, absolutely. Wear one. I
wear one when I go into stores. I don’t have any problem with wearing one but I don’t want to
preach with one on. And also, I want to see your face and also this is my religion. I believe
people. I believe there is something about us. I believe in God. I believe in his protection. I
believe we pass through the Red Sea under a cloud. I believe we got through the year in an
amazing way. No question about it. We got through the year in an amazing way.
This is therapy. Body life is therapy. We respect people that are sensitive or high risk people. I have them on the
phone. I talk to some of them through the weeks. I encourage them. I don’t have any problem.
I’m not talking about that. I’m talking about our rights as Americans to assemble as we please.
Wait a minute! Hold it! There’s fire codes and laws and rules and regulations. We follow them.
We’re very happy. They protect us. They are very good. We have no problem with electricity
and fire and water. Everything that is needed. Our school falls under other jurisdiction. It’s not
the church. Our Bible college is running the way we want it to and everything in it’s order and in
it’s way. My heart, my desire is to see your face. My desire is to have communion. My desire is
to assemble often. And by the way, my fundamental way of living in this whole thing has been
Psalm 91. I have faith in Jesus Christ that is going to protect me. I understand the other views
and way of thinking. I understand. That’s fine. But can you leave me alone? Can you leave me
alone? Can I make my decision? Let me say another thing. Do you know that in the American
way of life we are to make our decisions for ourselves where I live.
Who decided where you live? You decided. Do you decide where your kids go to school, what job you have, where you
live? Do you buy a car? No, I don’t buy a car. I have a bicycle. Is that your decision. That’s my
decision. Where I go swimming, what risks I take. If you have a gun or not. If you go hunting or not. If you go fishing or not. Whose decisions are they? Are they risks? Do you know when you
get in your car and drive home tonight, it’s a risk. Are you going to decide that? Wait a minute.
The government should decide that. They should decide everything. No or what? You are an
individual that makes decisions for your life and how you handle this pandemic has been your
decision. This pulpit has been very good and very gracious I believe in just making Christ the
issue and we follow him. He will take care of us. We’ve gone through the Red Sea in principle
and God has been good to us. We continue to live like this. We’ve been living like this and we
continue to live like this because this is our blessing.
I am sorry for the people that do not have a church where there is a message and life and love and friends and laughter. Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha! Hanging out with P. Butch Veader at the table and hanging out with another group of ladies and
the widows in our church who have friends and love. I’m very thankful that God has given us a
spiritual therapy to keep us healthy spiritually and mentally. And emotionally. And we don’t
apologize for it. No apology. No apology to anybody. You make you decision and that’s how it is.
We are compliant as much as we can be in a reasonable way and we have been and that’s
been proven through the year. We’ve had a great year and by God’s grace we are going to have
a great future however it comes out. God knows. We’re in a very good place in the Lord. Amen!
I hope that helps. Thank you, Lord. Okay. (Altar call). I kind of feel like you guys don’t want to
go. Okay. Get out of here! No! We’re a great family. I have a paper here about the numbers, the
mental health problems which has exploded since last June. Like really serious across the
country. You could turn to your neighbor and say thanks for keeping me sane.
You have helped me out. They say, have I? My wife said to me that I’m making her insane, but, you know! Is it
true that Body life is something we love, long for and enjoy? It really is. It is. Our love, our faces.
I was encouraged when Titus came to me, Paul said. When Titus came I was so happy to see
him. 2 Corinthians 2, he was nervous. You ever hear bad news like in an emergency room? You’re in
the waiting room waiting to hear something. It’s kind of like Paul was like that when he heard
about the problems in Corinth. It bothered him. When Titus came, he was very comforted by the
good news. So we are just people that get nervous and worried and troubled. We just need
each other in Christ. In Christ. That’s the key.
Please enjoy these sermon notes from the messages preached at Greater Grace Church in Baltimore. These notes are provided to aid in your study and understanding of the Word. Note that these notes do not represent complete, word-for-word transcriptions. Also, they may contain omissions as well as some errors in spelling and structure, etc., as we attempt to provide them as soon as possible. Our hope is that these notes serve as a way to help you search and connect with messages on related subjects and passages. Thank you for your interest in the ministry of Greater Grace.