Dear friends, once again – this is a history making year for the ministry of Camp Del-Haven! We earnestly need your prayers! For the first time, we are unable to launch our camp season on time. And so we have to switch gears a little bit – and make a new approach to things. The one thing, however, that is not new – is our need to plead and pray for our sovereign Lord’s faithful leading! He is our Savior! He knows and answers our needs Before we call out to Him! Praise His Name! [see Is.65:24] We serve the only true God with whom there is nothing too hard, or too wonderful, for Him to do! [see: Jer.32:17] So, please pray with us for the wisdom of God to guide us during these uncertain circumstances.
Of course, we must not let down our constant and persistent petitioning of our Lord God for Him to care for and meet the many needs of each of our children. The hateful and wicked Enemy has had his evil eye on the children right from the start! And, these times of riots and looting are not only dangerous, but they also spread a dreadful contagion of rebellious thinking and acting. And our young, impressionable Staff and Camper alike need our prayers for stability and safety! Our Great God can preserve them and provide for them and protect them (as well as us).
Our current ministry plan for this summer includes the following efforts to keep in contact and continue to minister to campers and their families. At this time we will be serving our previous campers from last summer, but we will also add new campers and families as opportunities are presented to us.
- We will be sending out 6 newsletters over the summer to the campers. The newsletters will contain content with a Bible devotion, a daily Bible reading plan through the Gospel of John, a memory verse with learning activities, nature study, at-home craft ideas, Internet links to child friendly Christian websites and Christian sing-a-longs, etc.
- Sometime in the summer we will put together a small care package to send to campers. The care package will contain small gifts such as religious themed items: tracts, book marks, coloring books, stickers, crafts, small toys, etc.
- Beginning in July we will also start inviting families out for one family a day to do some fishing, boating, swimming, using the basketball court/playground, and cooking some hot dogs and marshmallows. We will be able to interact with them during the day to continue to build relationships and share the Gospel. Many of our current campers come from families whose parents have also attended Camp Del-Haven as children, and we are excited to see how the Lord will use this opportunity to minister to entire families.
Please be in prayer with us as we desire to continue to serve children and families during this time.
Well, dear ones, the restrictions due to the virus seem to be lessening a little bit – which is good. However, we are still not sure when we can have camp this year! Please be in prayer with us over this issue. And, when you pray for all the boys and girls that are currently a part of the family of Del-Haven Camp Ministries – including both our campers and staff helpers – please pray for their rescue from the restrictions of individual freedoms that we all normally would have apart from this virus. It has created a disturbing — and even a destructive divisiveness – in all of our normal activities! Let us prayerfully seek our Lord’s specific deliverance – as only He can per-form — from these oppressive circumstances that we all are presently being subjected to!
Our freedom to gather together and worship our Lord God “in Spirit and in Truth” is definitely under attack! The fervent prayer of the righteous is by far the most effective offense that we can wage against the enemy! In this way, the best defense — is a good offense. Pr.18:10 immediately comes to mind: “The Name of the Lord is a strong tower – the righteous runneth into it and is safe!” In addition, is Ps.56:9, which says: “When I cry unto thee, then shall mine enemies turn back! This I know; for God is with me.” Praise His Precious and Protective Name!
Dear ones, on April 29th there occurred a Bitter/Sweet event. A most wonderful preacher and pastor, brother Don Fortner, of Grace Baptist Church of Danville, KY – by God’s great grace and perfect timing – was completely delivered from this wicked world – and was divinely ushered and received — into the heavenly glory of his blessed Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ! Don’s passing away is Bitter – only because we will greatly miss him and his ministry unto us! We need to remember to pray for his precious wife, Shelby, that “the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort” will be extra close unto her – embracing her in His everlasting and loving arms.
But, his passing is also Sweet — because our dear brother has been completely rescued from this sin troubled and turbulent world. Praise the Name of the Savior! Don was one of the greatest warriors among us for his faithfulness to proclaim the pure Truth of the gospel of God’s sove-reign grace that this world has ever had! He leaves us a valuable legacy of recorded messages and many published works that are filled with the riches of a right and an accurate understanding of the Word of God. Thanks be unto God for what He has given unto us through His faithful servant, Don Fortner! I, therefore, conclude this Del-Haven Prayer/Newsletter with this blessed reminder to all you. It is a reminder that I can just hear my dear brother, Don, echoing to us all – right directly from the Word of God:
“Giving thanks unto the Father, which hath made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in Light: (13) who hath delivered us from the power of darkness and hath translated us into the Kingdom of His dear Son: (14) in whom we have redemption through His blood – the remission of sins!” [Col.1:12-14] “Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth – wherein dwelleth Righteousness.” [2Pe.3:13] “For we through the Spirit – wait for the Hope of Righteousness by faith.” [Gal.5:5]
We ended last month’s devotional with He.1:8: “But unto the Son He saith, Thy throne, O God, is forever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy Kingdom.” So, therefore, Christ Jesus sovereignly rules His Kingdom with the sceptre of the Righteousness of God! Christ our God right now sits upon His eternal throne and rules over us in this fallen-in-sin world – with a Righteous Sceptre. This is why Ro.8:28-29 says: “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God – to them who are the called – according to His purpose. (29) For whom He did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren.” The man, Christ Jesus, is the image of the eternal Son of God, and it is unto His all Righteous and holy image – unto which — all of God’s loved and chosen from eternity are divinely purposed to be conformed. Christ truly is our all and in all!
Christ Jesus was purposed and decreed from eternity, in eternity and for eternity to sovereignly rule over us in all His holy authority over heaven and in earth. He – having been raised from among the dead by the glory of God the Father (Ro.6:4) – right now sits upon His sovereign holy throne (He.1) governing over all the things that pertain to the eternal salvation of all His people (Mt.1:21). We owe all our thanks unto God the Father — for it is He who has qualified us – or, “made us meet to be partakers of the inheritance of the saints in Light”! This He has done by His placing us in His Son in eternity (see Eph.1:3-4)! Praise His Name! And, it is the Father that has also delivered us from Satan’s present ruling authority and power in this world! “And has translated us into the Kingdom of His dear Son!” In whom we, according to the holy and precious blood of His Son, Jesus — right now – have forgiveness and freedom from our sins. Praise, again, unto our Savior/God!
While we are now still in this fallen-in-sin world we do not yet completely realize the victory that we have in and through our Lord Jesus Christ — but there is promised to us in God’s Word that it is certain we will realize it when, once, we are finally completely freed from this corrupt world of sin and death. This is exactly what the text from 2Pe.3:13 declares unto us that we “look for”! The “Righteousness of God” — in the spiritual “Kingdom of Christ” — right now eternally reigns and rules – apart from its being completely and presently realized! But, this is only while we are still confined in this passing away world. 1Co.15:50 says: “Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the Kingdom of God neither doth corruption inherit incorruption.” Vs.54-57 go on to say: “…when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written – Death is swallowed up in victory. (55) O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? (56) The sting of death is sin and the strength of sin is the law. (57) But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
So then, right now we are living out the descriptive declaration of Gal.5:5: “For we through the Spirit – wait for the hope of righteousness by faith.” We do not perform the Righteousness of God, we wholeheartedly trust in the perfect Righteousness of “the obedience of Christ” – on our behalf!
For Christ’s Glory Only! – John Carpenter
These are trying days that have come upon us. Right at this moment it yet remains to be seen whether, or not, it will be possible to even have Del-Haven’s regular camp season! The Corona-virus is indeed a pestilence that the Lord has allowed to have been thrust upon our world. His judgments are just and perfect! No matter what people may say or think — its presence and its impact on our lives has happened, and is happening right now in our midst. And, our sovereign God has been – and still is – in complete control of it all! He was in control when it first broke out – and He will be in control of it when it finally will end. Please pray with us in regards to these serious matters! As always in this fallen world – God will either manifest Himself as our Savior, or as our Judge – and that will be the case whether it means life , or death. God’s Word will forever remain to be true – “For whosoever shall call upon the Name of the Lord – shall be saved.” [Ro.10:13] Therefore, let us go before His eternal throne humbly seeking His salvation.
There is another text of scripture — Pr.3:5-6 – that has traditionally become a standard among all of our campers here at Camp Del-Haven. Its message is very relevant unto us right now! It says: “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart – and lean not unto thine own understanding – in all thy ways acknowledge Him – and He shall direct thy path.” These are words upon which we may live out our whole lives upon this earth. Again, I humbly request your earnest prayers for the Lord’s Will to be done for Camp Del-Haven this summer.
No matter what the circumstances dictate to us – we always need to be praying for the precious children that have come to camp – and especially the ones whose hearts were set on coming this year. This unusual adversity that we are currently experiencing can be especially disconcerting to those that are young in the faith. Times like this — that are out of our control – serve to cause us to depend completely upon our wonderful Savior which is a good thing [Romans 8:28]. He is ever faithful and completely trustworthy!
By the way, we have another special prayer request. Last month the hot water heater in our Chapel broke down and flooded throughout the building. This means that it needs to be replaced. The expense is going to run right around $300. Please be in prayer with us concerning this need.
“…to finish the transgression, and to make an end of sins, and to make reconciliation for iniquity, and to bring in Everlasting Righteousness…”[Dan.9:24]
“Therefore, by the deeds of the Law shall no flesh be Justified in His sight! For by the Law is the knowledge of sin. (21) But now the Righteousness of God without the Law is manifested being witnessed by the Law and the prophets, (22) even the Righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe…(23) For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; (24) being Justified freely by His grace, through the Redemption which is in Christ Jesus, (25) whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His blood, to declare His Righteousness for the Remission of sins that are past through the forbearance of God. (26) To declare, I say, at this time, His Righteousness – that He might be Just, and the Justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.” [Ro.3:20-26]
These two portions of scripture declare the pure gospel truth regarding the Righteousness of God. The Word of God refers to the Gospel of Christ as an “Everlasting Gospel” (Rev.14:6). And, the Word of God also refers to the Righteousness of Christ as an “Everlasting Righteousness” (see above Dan.9:24). The other three scriptural prophetic descriptives of Dan.9:24 right before the one just mentioned, make it absolutely obvious that this points directly to the historical fulfillment of the death and resurrection of the eternally accomplished atonement through the person and performance of the Lord Jesus Christ!
This brings us to the context of Rom.3:20-26. Right up front, it is made clear and plain that there is no justification – or, divine declaration of any among fallen-in-sin mankind — as being righteous before Holy God by doing the works of the Law. All that can be accomplished out of the Law is a full knowledge and understanding of sin! In fact, 1Co.15:56 says: “The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin – is the Law.” Hence, there shall no one from among all of fallen flesh that — shall be justified in the sight of Holy God – from doing the deeds of the Law. We absolutely need Eternal Justification or, Everlasting Righteousness in order to be eternally saved! In other words, we absolutely need our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ to be our advocate and our propitiation before holy, holy, holy God – where our eternal salvation is concerned!
This brings us to Ro.3:21-26. Christ Jesus, is the promised Seed of the woman that God declared would come and crush the head of the devil-serpent! He is announced in vs.21 as having been manifested – or, as having showed up! The Truth that Jesus, the Christ of God, is our Everlasting Righteousness is substantiated from Jer.23:6, which says: “…and this is His Name whereby He shall be called: The Lord Our Righteousness.” And, this is verified by God through His two witnesses: 1. His divine Law – which Jesus obeyed perfectly during His walk through this fallen-in-sin world, and 2. His prophets — through whom He foretold the coming of Christ into this world. This Righteousness which Christ was – and is – and forever will be, is the “Righteousness of God”! This is what the faith of Abraham exhibited. Consider Ro.4:2-5: “For if Abraham were Justified by works, he hath whereof to glory; but not before God. (3) For what saith the scripture? Abraham believed God and it was counted unto him for righteousness. (4) Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace – but of debt. (5) But to him that worketh not – but believeth on Him that justifieth the ungodly – his faith is counted for Righteousness.” For it is God’s grace of saving faith — that is“the faith of the Lord Jesus Christ”! Praise The Holy Name Of The Savior!
For Christ’s Glory Only – John Carpenter