Pastor Kim H. Lewis, 65, of Beaverton, MI, entered the presence of his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on Saturday, October 12, 2019. Kim was a graduate of Clarks Summit University in Pennsylvania, University of Liverpool in United Kingdom, and Trinity College of Bible & Theological Seminary in Newburgh, Indiana. He pastored several churches in Humphrey, New York, Binghamton, New York, Jenison, Michigan & First Baptist Church of Essexville-Bay City, Michigan (MARBC). He spent the past eight years pastoring the Beaverton Baptist Church and serving also as a Chaplain for Heartland Hospice. Left to cherish his memory are his wife of 44 years: Patricia Lewis of Beaverton; children: Nathan (Kerstin) Lewis of Saline & Aaron (Breyona) Lewis of Plymouth. His children blessed him with 5 wonderful grandchildren whom he loved dearly. He is also survived by his sister: Amy (Phil) of Tampa, Florida & brother: Van (Cheryl) of Woodstock, Georgia. He is preceded in death by his parents. Memorial Services will be held on Wednesday, October 16, 2019, 1:00 P.M. at Beaverton Baptist Church. Visitation will be held from 11:00 A.M. until the time of service.
Behold The Great Creator Makes
Behold the great Creator makes
himself a house of clay,
a robe of virgin flesh he takes
which he will wear for ay.
Hark, hark, the wise eternal Word,
like a weak infant cries!
In form of servant is the Lord,
and God in cradle lies.
This wonder struck the world amazed,
it shook the starry frame;
squadrons of spirits stood and gazed,
then down in troops they came.
Glad shepherds ran to view this sight;
a choir of angels sings,
and eastern sages with delight
adore this King of kings.
Join then all hearts that are not stone,
and all our voices prove,
to celebrate this holy One,
the God of peace and love.
Thomas Pestel, ca. 1586-1660
May the main focus of our Christmas celebration be the gift of eternal life that has been given by God in Jesus Christ, as declared in John 3:16-18 – “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him. Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only Son of God.” This is what truly makes this a season of great joy.
We pray for the encouragement and strengthening of the churches and friends of the MARBC as the year 2019 comes to a close and as God provides wise guidance and spiritual enablement in the new year and decade ahead.
Celebrating the Holy One,
Ken and Sharon Floyd
“She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” [Matthew 1:21 ESV]
Shadow of a Tree
He was born in the shadow of a tree, the shadow of a tree;
Ever present was the knowledge He would be
Hanging from a tree – the tree of Calvary.
Call Him Jesus, for He will purify the people of their sin.
Call Him Jesus, for He will one day cleanse the waywardness of men.
Holy Christ-child, you’re as sinless as the freshly fallen snow.
Yet, Lord Jesus, you’re still doomed to give your life for all your foes.
Call Him Jesus, for He will make the blinded eyes of men to see.
Call Him Jesus, for He will loose the chains and set the captives free.
Holy Christ-child, you’re perfection so unique in human form.
Yet, Lord Jesus, they reject your love with ridicule and scorn.
You were born in the shadow of a tree, shadow of a tree;
Ever present is the knowledge you will be hanging from a tree,
The tree of Calvary.
(Christine Wyrtzen, 1980)
May you have a blessed Christmas as you celebrate the glories of the Christ, Who was “born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, so that we might receive adoption as sons” [Galatians 4:4-5 ESV]. The main Christmas gift is the offer of eternal life given by God through Jesus Christ. This is what truly makes this a season of great joy.
We pray for the encouragement and strengthening of the churches and friends of the MARBC as the year 2018 comes to a close and the new year unfolds. May God be glorified daily through your lives and ministries as you declare the name of “Jesus!”
In the name of Jesus,
Ken and Sharon Floyd
Rev. Thomas F. Dolph age 85 of Rockford, passed away on Thursday, February 14, 2019 at Boulder Creek Assisted Living. His faith has now become sight and he sees his Savior face to face.
Tom was born September 10, 1933 in White County, IN the son of Robert and Retha (Wines) Dolph. He was a graduate of the Grand Rapids Baptist College and Seminary where he was alumnus of the year in 1987. He was a Baptist pastor for 35 years and worked with Interpas Ministry for 20 years, the last 12 as Director.
Surviving are his wife of 63 years, Jean; daughters, Cathy (David) Harrison, Sandy (Jim) Winell; grandchildren, Jared (Christina) Winell, Abby (Daniel) Vanderson; great grandchildren, Anders and Joline Winell, Fitz, Zuri, Fox and Ozzy Vanderson.
The family will greet friends Sunday from 4-7 pm at the Bliss-Witters & Pike Funeral Home, Cedar Springs. The service will be held Monday 11:00 am at Blythefield Hills Baptist Church, 6727 Kuttshill Dr., Rockford. Pastor Matt Zainea officiating. Interment in the Spring at Chubbuck Cemetery, Kent City. Memorial contributions may be made to Bibles International or Faith Hospice.
“Hope in Harsh Times,” 2018 MARBC Annual Conference highlights
“What is your expectation of God? We all like things to go well. As believers we must learn that God doesn’t always give us what we want, but He always gives us what we need.” Starting with this opening comment, Mike Hess then pointed those in attendance to consider how they might respond to suffering like Jesus did. The newly elected National Representative of the General Association of Regular Baptist Churches served as the keynote speaker of the MARBC Conference.
Hess shared three messages from 1 Peter in developing the conference theme, “Hope in Harsh Times: Finding Joy in Suffering while Serving Christ.” The messages focused upon “suffering like Jesus did,” “how to prepare yourself to suffer well,” and “truths to consider when you suffer for doing right.”
Using 1 Peter 2:18-25 as his guide, he observed that the greatest way that a Christian can respond to unjust treatment is to follow the example of Christ. “We can’t control how we are treated, but we can control how we respond.” Christians need to be like a child who learns how to write by tracing over a stencil of letters with a pencil. The Christian should trace over the model that Jesus has given through his life and ministry.
Ken Floyd, MARBC Ministry Director, closed the conference with a message focusing upon pastoral ministry from 1 Peter 5, “Shepherding with Hope in Harsh Times.” He noted that Peter had spent his entire adult life meditating upon what it means to identify with the sufferings of Christ. “Peter serves as a good model of how to suffer well while also anticipating the coming glory of Christ. Eschatology should not be avoided in the preaching and teaching of today’s pastors. Instead, it should be emphasized. The focus upon the return of Christ and ‘the unfading crown of glory’ is a great motivator for the under shepherd and the flock of God he is called to lead. The last thing that you need while living in harsh times are weak shepherds who dispense ‘popcorn’ sermons, ‘cotton candy’ theology, and ‘band aid’ methodology.”
The MARBC Conference was held at the facilities of the historic Berean Baptist Church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, on October 29-30, 2018. Berean has a longstanding influence in the Regular Baptist movement and was one of the first churches to align itself in the formative days of the Grand Rapids Association of Regular Baptist Churches.
Those in attendance appreciated the acoustics and aesthetics for worship in Berean’s auditorium. Worship sessions were capably led by Garth Dietlin, Berean’s worship pastor. Lead pastor Marcus Little and his staff served those in attendance with gracious hospitality. The church gymnasium served as the exhibit area for twenty-five displayers.
2019 Joint Conference announced at conference!
A unique joint conference is planned for 2019. Three Regular Baptist state associations will meet together at Emmanuel Baptist Church in Toledo, Ohio, on October 21-23, 2019. The MARBC (Michigan), OARBC (Ohio), and Crossroads Fellowship (Indiana) will join together for this special gathering. More details regarding the conference will be shared in the coming weeks.