First Baptist Church of Rahway, 177 Elm Ave., Rahway, New Jersey 07065 is a multi-cultural congregation that has a Blended English Service on Sunday Mornings, a Latino Service at 12:00, and a Service in Telugu at 3:30PM. For more information, call (732) 388-8626. Or click here to send an email. If you wish to help the Mission and Ministry of First Baptist financially click the Donate Button.
Monday, January 31, 2011
Chinese Christian Mission (CCM) consists of a group of dedicated Chinese Christians. We follow the Lord Jesus Christ' command to reach the world with the gospel, through literature, broadcasting, and sending missionaries. Jesus Christ is our Commander in Chief and we stress to work with churches and Christians of same burden to bring the gospel to all nations.
During his early years of itinerary evangelistic ministry in Europe, CCM founder Rev. Thomas Wang received this vision from the Lord, "You will serve your kinsmen with a fervent heart. He consequently came to the U. S. to study in a seminary in 1958. After graduation in 1961, he rented a garage in Detroit, Michigan for twenty five dollars a month to started a four-man prayer meeting. God gave them the vision to spread the gospel by publishing litearture. In October, 1961 Rev. Wang established the Chinese Christian Mission, a inter-denominational organization.
Rev. Wang spent sevaral weeks in a print shop to learn the trade of printing. Working with an used press donated by brothers and sisters, he labored three days and nights to publish the first issue of Chinese Christians Today (printed in English at first). A group of devoted volunteers came on weekends to help with binding and mailing. The free magazine was very well received, and readership topped four thousand by the second and third issues. Due to the tremendous needs, Rev. Wang's fiancee Rachael spent her wedding money, six hundred dollars in all, for an addressing machine.
By popular request of readers since the first English issue of Chinese Christians Today, CCM quickly changed to publish the Chinese Christian Monthly in Chinese in March the same year (Picture on right is the first issue). The readership reached seven thousand, more than half in Hong Kong, in the first year.
As the ministry developed and need of Chinese increased, CCM Taiwan was established in Taipei in November, 1961. Following, CCM Hong Kong was established in 1965, then CCM Philippines in 1970, CCM Singapore in 1977, CCM Canada (Vancouver) in 1981, both CCM Macau and CCM Australia in 1993, and CCM New Zealand in 2010.
After fifty years of serving, CCM has developed into a multi-facet mission organization from a humble literature ministry. Our strategy is reaching the Chinese to reach the world, by sending missionaries to the Chinese to bring them the gospel in their language, and equip believers to reach the local ethnic groups.
Friday, January 28, 2011
I wrote this essay a while ago, after a crazy summer vacation. With all of the snow building up around me I figured I would break it out and dream of warmer weather. It is about how small we really are when compared to God’s amazing creation.
Being a minister means low budget vacations. No all expense paid cruises for me and my family. We load up the truck, hitch up our camper and head for the hills. A couple of years ago we traveled to the wilds of Northeast Pennsylvania. Beautiful, peaceful, with nice quiet people, it’s the perfect place to relax and read a good book by an open fire. The beautiful blue sky stretches out above us as we ponder the wonders of God’s creation.
A couple of weeks before we packed up and headed out, that beautiful blue sky filled with clouds and dropped more rain on NEPA than has been seen in thirty years. The rain came down and the floods came up and the Susquehanna River overflowed its banks and deluged towns and villages. After the sky turned blue again and the floodwaters subsided, there were thousands of pools of water left behind evaporating in the summer sun. These thousands of puddles soon contained millions of mosquito larvae, which soon hatched into millions of flying insects whose sole purpose was to make my week in the woods a living hell.
They attacked us as soon as we got out of the truck. Within minutes my wife and I were covered with bites. Being veteran campers, we were prepared with various anti-mosquito strategies. We tried Skin So Soft and the mosquitos bit us while they enjoyed the silky smoothness of our skin. We heard that Bounce fabric softener works and is less harsh then other defenses. When the mosquitos landed on us they didn’t suffer from static cling. We applied concoctions featuring the dreaded Deet. Deet is the best anti-mosquito chemical around but it’s like smearing toxic waste all over your body. The mosquitoes paused a while to ponder this new development. Then they donned environmental suits and bit us anyway. We sat close to a smoky fire hoping that would help but I saw the bugs sitting on the edge of the fire pit toasting marshmallows.
Even Jack the camp host wasn’t immune. Most state parks employ a camp host for the summer to act as a liaison between the campers and the rangers. Jack answers questions and calls the rangers if there is any trouble. He told me that he lives year round in his RV and travels the country. He loves traveling because he meets all kinds of people. A family he met in New Mexico maintained an old fort that was a national historical landmark. He found out that the family lived alone at the fort and traveled once a month a hundred miles to the nearest store to buy food and supplies. He asked them if they were bothered by the absence of other people, but they said they wouldn’t live anywhere else. At the campsite, Jack sat in his chair and shared stories with anyone willing to stop and chat. Mosquitoes bit him every so often, but he didn’t seem to be bothered at all. I guess they are part of the memories he collects as he travels the country.
We played games like dominos and a card game called Zap with our friends Pat and John. Everyone who knows Pat is amazed she is willing to sleep in a tent and cook outdoors. Pat is very meticulous with her appearance – putting on makeup and fixing her hair as soon as she rises in the morning. She works hard to keep her world organized. At camp everything is kept in its proper place. Food, supplies, towels, are carefully arranged in milk crates and stacked in the van. Nothing is allowed to sit on the picnic table that doesn’t belong there. Pat’s mission in life is to bring order to her world, even if that world consists of dirt, grass, and gravel. As the mosquitoes swarmed around her waiting for their chance to pounce, they were required to get in line and take a number.
Around the bend from us were several families with lots of little kids. The kids were having a blast running around the playground, riding their bikes, rolling down the hill on a Big Wheel. Their parents valiantly slathered anti-bug stuff on them, but to no avail. They were covered with bites. Every time I saw one I would cringe. But the kids just kept doing what they wanted to do. About mid-week a local news channel car rolled into camp. They were looking for a story about the mosquitoes and they came to the right place. They interviewed the families and filmed the kids and gleefully rushed back to the studio because there is nothing that says suffering better than a ten year old covered from head to toe with red welts. But as usual, this was only part of the story. The other part was that this kid was still having a ball, along with the rest of his little pals. Children are much more resilient than we give them credit for. They may cry and complain loudly when a parent is in view, but when no one is looking they’re back to having a good time.
I did not have the pleasure of meeting the person or persons who propped open the men’s room door. Every day there were a gazillion bugs in the men’s room. There were spiders making webs in the corners, Daddy Long Legs hiding in the toilet, moths perched on the walls and, of course, swarms of the dreaded you-know-what’s. I moved the rock that was the doorstop and closed it. The next time nature called, the door was propped open again. This went on all week long. As I sat on the throne I kept a careful eye open for the flying villains. If I saw one, I swatted it with my hat and celebrated with a notch in the toilet paper roll. But in the end my adversary was victorious and the door was open as I drove out of the campground.
As I sat in that beautiful campground pondering the beauties of God’s creation, I couldn’t help but wonder why He had created these little monsters. It really is 21st century remake of the David and Goliath story, with a perverted 21st century twist: David is the bad guy. He’s a tiny insect who takes advantage of the summertime bounties of warmth, and rain, feeds off of our blood, gives us diseases that kill and maim millions. We Goliaths spray him, swat him, and bug zap him. We spend billions trying to come up with the most sophisticated weapons with which to annihilate him. But he cannot be vanquished. The greatest technological achievements of the modern world have come up with only one sure fire way of escaping him – jumping in a space ship and leaving the planet.
Perhaps the message here is that God created mosquitoes to remind us of our ultimate frailty and keep us humble. We think we’re so great because we’re lots bigger than the mosquitoes. But there’s one place where size doesn’t matter, and that’s in the eyes of God. All creatures were created equal, and each and every species has its particular job to do. The mosquitoes’ job is to keep alive at our expense. Our job is to keep alive at theirs. Even though they are one-trillionth our size, they are a formidable enemy, and should be admired as such. Like little David aiming his slingshot at his giant adversary, or third world terrorists bringing down a superpower, they serve as a warning to us lest we get too smug. Arrogance goes before the fall.
So, I returned from my vacation with a new respect for mosquitoes. Not that I’m sending them apologies, or inviting them to dinner or anything. But now, as I swat them and spray them, I try to appreciate them, for keeping me in my humble place and making me a wiser, and maybe better, human being.
Pastor Bill Whitehead
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
Mountain Top Mining
Mountaintop removal / valley fill coal mining (MTR) has been called strip mining on steroids. One author says the process should be more accurately named: mountain range removal. Mountaintop removal /valley fill mining annihilates ecosystems, transforming some of the most biologically diverse temperate forests in the world into biologically barren moonscapes.
Read More from the Mountain Justice organization.
Christians Working to Save God’s Creation
Restoring Eden, officially Christians for Environmental Stewardship, was formed in the early 1990s by Peter Illyn, an evangelical pastor from the Pacific Northwest. Peter, an avid wilderness hiker, a few summers earlier had taken two llamas – Frank and Jesse – on a record-setting thousand-mile llama trek up the spine of the Cascade Mountains. According to Peter, "I went into the mountains a minister, but I came out an environmental activist."
Read more about Peter Illyn and Restoring Eden.
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
Monday, January 24, 2011
VALLEY FORGE, PA (ABNS 1/12/11)—One year ago today a devastating 7.1 magnitude earthquake struck southern Haiti about 16 miles west of the nation’s capitol Port-au-Prince. In less than 60 seconds, major portions of the area were left in shambles and lives were changed forever. Massive casualties resulted. More than 1 million people became homeless, 4,000 schools were destroyed and then months later, thousands were struck by a cholera epidemic.
American Baptists were deeply affected by the suffering of brothers and sisters in Christ and they responded with an extraordinary level of giving. As of December 31, 2010, $2.8 million was given for Haiti relief through One Great Hour of Sharing.
“In spite of economic recession and uncertainty, people have focused on things that really matter and have reached out in remarkable ways to our Haitian brothers and sisters,” commented Reid Trulson, American Baptist International Ministries’ (IM) executive director.
“In addition to generous giving,” commented Lisa Rothenberger, American Baptist Churches’ World Relief Officer, “hundreds of churches sent health kits to Church World Service, volunteers traveled to Haiti to assist with rebuilding efforts or provide emergency medical treatment, and churches around the world prayed for a better future for the Haitian people.”
In a continued spirit of collaboration, American Baptists worked with both Baptist and ecumenical partners in Haiti to respond to the immediate needs and help build the foundation for a stronger future.
“Despite sometimes discouraging news from the major TV and print news outlets, the gifts American Baptists have so generously given continue to make a difference in the lives of Haitian families,” commented José Norat-Rodríguez, IM’s area director for Iberoamerica/Caribbean, which includes Haiti.
“These gifts are improving the lives of ordinary Haitians everyday,” he said. American Baptists’ gifts and thousands of hours of labor are being put to work in tangible ways to rebuild schools, get children back in class, help individual families start small businesses, give the recently disabled skills to earn a living, and provide provisions at a refugee camp for displaced Haitians.
“Hope is indeed alive in Haiti--because of God’s grace and the continuing response of followers of Jesus and other people of good will,” concluded Trulson.
IM has prepared seven new mini-videos to highlight the significant contributions that American Baptist churches are making in Haiti. Through stories of our missionaries and partners and a financial report, you will see that God is working through American Baptists. This information is summarized on a printed flyer that is also available on the website. The new resources are available starting today through January 14.
Churches and individuals are invited to download the videos and flyers from the IM website: http://www.internationalministries.org/topics/haiti_earthquake. They are designed for use with congregations for Mission Moments, Bible study and Sunday School classes.
Thursday, January 20, 2011
Friendship is a journey of sharing between two or more people. No one can journey through life completely alone. Linking our lives through relationships permits us to share our hearts with others who, in turn, reveal themselves to us. When this is done in a free, healthy, and positive context, it is more satisfying than almost any other human interpersonal experience. To be loved and accepted – and to respond in kind – is at the very heart of what it means to be a human created in the image of God.
Friendship is also a shared journey in which we combine forces with others to fulfill God’s will. Sharing events and experiences is an integral aspect of friendship. But deep friendship moves beyond leisure activities, encouraging partners to reach their creative potential, to serve others with resolve and hope, and to make the world a better place. Friendships change history in both small and large ways.
This is an extract from: Making Friends, Making Disciples by Lee B. Spitzer.
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Baptist Camp Lebanon in New Jesey added a new building this year. Above is a video of the building process.
Please pray for the campers and the staff of this wonderful ministry. They all work hard to provide spiritual refreshment in a dry time. Here is their website if you want to learn more;
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
That’s often the first question raised when Rick Bunker, chaplain at Philadelphia Park Racetrack, mentions where he conducts his ministry. It helps when they learn that he primarily works with those people at Philadelphia Park. This number includes the hot walkers, grooms, exercise riders, pony riders, jockeys, trainers, and horse owners who work seven days a week year round. They care for about 1,500 horses at the 39 barns that make up the backside community at the track. Of the workers, 200 live in the 12 dorms provided at the track.
The chaplain’s day begins with a walk through the barns, making his track pastoral calls. Those morning visits give the chaplain the opportunity to learn the needs of the stable workers, arrange appointment times, and simply to offer a listening ear and helping hand. Greeting the exercise riders as they trot and gallop their horses also keeps him in touch with that group of people he serves.
Besides making the barn and backstretch visits, the chaplain leads the weekly AA/NA drug and alcohol meetings, conducts weekly chapel services, organizes special events, distributes clothing and other items to the workers, visits those in the hospital, conducts funerals and weddings, sits on the sports program committee and the dormitory representative council, provides regular counseling, and serves as a liaison for health care and education for the track personnel.
The chaplain’s office conducts several special events annually. Among these is the Annual Christmas Party, made possible by the horsemen’s association as well as churches throughout America. The children of track personnel receive gifts and each track worker living in the dorm receives gifts. It’s indeed a wonderful time for everyone.
The Chaplain’s office staff includes numerous volunteers from area churches and from racetrack personnel as well as two part-time paid staff.
Volunteers are vital to the work. Each week the Chaplain conducts a bi-lingual service, assisted by Mr. Rey Roque and Mrs. Hilda Garcia. A groom distributes clothing and other items donated by churches and individuals. Several of the stable employees help to provide transportation for those workers who need a ride for their appointments with a doctor or dentist.
The chaplain and council serve those at the track in order to share God’s great love through his son, Jesus Christ our Lord, seeking to make disciples by sharing the good news of what Christ has done for them.
To Learn More about the Philadelphia Division of Racetrack Chaplaincy of America go to; http://www.rtca-pa.org/home.php
Sunday, January 16, 2011
Jim Purcell is a Protestant Seminary Student preparing to be a Hospital Chaplain. He has had to learn to coordinate with Catholic Priests for patients in the hospital. Below is his take on working with other faiths in a hospital setting.
"Roman-Catholic clergy occupies a unique place in the hearts and belief structures of Catholics. In the hospital, a place of great vulnerability and even fear, the Catholic priest is a necessary So, in the case of Protestant chaplains and their patients, there is going to be a regular need for contact with Catholic clergy in order to facilitate important Liturgical rites, most especially Last Rites.
"Frequently, where it involves Protestant chaplains, there are abilities for, as an example, Baptist clergy to fulfill the needs and expectations of Presbyterian or Methodist, among others, hospital inpatients. Religiously and theologically, the common experience of faiths are not that far apart. There is a disparity between mainline Protestants and Pentecostals and/or Evangelicals, which may or may not be overcome by interaction with the patient and their family.
"The important thing, here, is the comfort and adaptability of the chaplain. There are just going to be times when chaplains have to work interdenominationally."
Learn More at http://www.faithoutsidethecity.blogspot.com/
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
From The Associated Press
TUCSON, Ariz. -- U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords is less sedated and more responsive five days after being shot in the head.
University of Arizona trauma chief Dr. Peter Rhee said Wednesday that her recovery from a gunshot wound to the head is going as anticipated and she has become more responsive as she comes off the heavy medication.
He says her condition is stable and so far, has not taken any dips.
Pray for Rep. Giffords, her family and the other people who were hurt and the families of those who were killed.
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
If you have never seen a Believers Baptism in a Baptist Church, here is a video from January 9th of two people accepting Jesus as their Lord and Savior.
Monday, January 10, 2011
Through cooperative arrangements with prison, probation, and parole officials throughout the country, The Salvation Army plays a growing role in prison rehabilitation and crime prevention. In some jurisdictions, prisoners are paroled to the direct custody of The Salvation Army. Services include Bible correspondence courses, prerelease job-training programs, employment opportunities in cooperation with parole personnel, material aid, and spiritual guidance to both prisoners and their families.
Community-based rehabilitation centers are the trend in the field of corrections. Many Salvation Army rehabilitation centers and Harbor Light Centers have served as designated halfway houses where former prisoners can participate in work-release programs. Those convicted of minor offenses often are given the opportunity to aacept placement in community service programs at corps community centers and institutions as an alternative to incarceration, or in the last months of their sentences.
In addition, Salvation Army officers and volunteers lead worship services in jails and prisons. A national Salvation Army Correctional Services Sunday is observed. Counseling and emergency assistance also are available to crime victims.
Find our more here;
Friday, January 7, 2011
Any serious study of friendship must begin by recognizing that a standard definition o friendship does not exist! In Simple Words, the distinguished Jewish scholar Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz examine the meaning of a host of common terms – such as nature, good, faith and death – to reveal wisdom about how humans see themselves. Sandwiched between chapters on masks and family, he probes the meaning of the word friends. Steinsaltz writes: “The term ‘friendship’ does not have an exact, universal meaning. Its precise definition may be, like pornography, a matter of geography, and indeed, its meaning varies from country to country and from culture to culture.”
We may not agree on a universal definition, yet friendship captures the hearts of all who dare to imagine that we can transcend loneliness and solitude. Henry David Thoreau wrote: “No word is oftener on the lips of men than Friendship, and indeed no thought is more familiar to their aspirations. All men are dreaming of it, and its drama, which is always a tragedy, is enacted daily. It is the secret of the universe.”
This is an extract from: Making Friends, Making Disciples by Lee B. Spitzer.
Wednesday, January 5, 2011
I have a friend who is traveling to India this month. That part of the world is very troubled with religious conflict. Please pray for the Christians in that region who are fearful of attacks from their neighbors.
Here is a story about the murder of a Pakistani Governor who fought for the release of an innocent woman imprisoned for her faith in Jesus.
The governor of Pakistan's Punjab province was assassinated Tuesday by his bodyguard.
Salman Taseer was one of the most vocal advocates for Asia Bibi, a Christian mother sentenced to death for alleged blasphemy, and an opponent of the country's blasphemy laws.
He was shot dead while walking through an Islamabad market by a bodyguard who opposed the governor's position.
Tuesday, January 4, 2011
Every true Christian will suffer trials of various sorts. God uses trials in our lives to accomplish many valuable things that have ETERNAL ramifications for us, but among other passages from the Bible, we know from 1 Peter 1:3-7: "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are kept by the power of God through faith for salvation ready to be revealed in the last time. In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while, if need be, you have been grieved by various trials, that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ."
Monday, January 3, 2011
The story of the Good Samaritan (Luke 10:30-37) gives a clear picture of God's desire for us to help those in desperate need wherever we find them. After describing how the Samaritan rescued a hurting man whom others had passed by, Jesus told His hearers, "Go and do likewise."
For over 40 years, Samaritan's Purse has done our utmost to follow Christ's command by going to the aid of the world's poor, sick, and suffering. We are an effective means of reaching hurting people in countries around the world with food, medicine, and other assistance in the Name of Jesus Christ. This, in turn, earns us a hearing for the Gospel, the Good News of eternal life through Jesus Christ.
Our emergency relief programs provide desperately needed assistance to victims of natural disaster, war, disease, and famine. As we offer food, water, and temporary shelter, we meet critical needs and give people a chance to rebuild their lives.
Our community development and vocational programs in impoverished villages and neighborhoods help people break the cycle of poverty and give them hope for a better tomorrow.
We impact the lives of vulnerable children through educational, feeding, clothing, and shelter programs that let them know they are not forgotten.
We provide first-class treatment in the Name of the Great Physician through our medical projects, as well as supplying mission hospitals with much needed equipment and supplies.
As our teams work in crisis areas of the world, people often ask, "Why did you come?" The answer is always the same: "We have come to help you in the Name of the Lord Jesus Christ." Our ministry is all about Jesus—first, last, and always. As the Apostle Paul said, "For we do not preach ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus' sake" (2 Corinthians 4:5, NIV).
For More Information;