Devotional for May 2018

“Wherefore, as by one man – sin entered into the world – and death by sin – and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned…”

“For, if by one man’s offense death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace – and of the gift of righteousness – shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ. (18) Therefore, as by the offense of one, judgment came upon all men to condemnation – even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto justification of life! (19) For as one man’s disobedience, many were made sinners – so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous. (20) Moreover, the law entered that the offense might abound. But, where sin abounded – grace did much more abound: (21) that as sin hath reigned unto death – even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.” [Ro.5:12;17-20]

What a wonderful passage of scripture this truly is! Herein is declared – in this fallen-in-sin world – the right now realities of the pure truth of the gospel of the glory, only, of the Lord Jesus Christ! It declares two great spiritual realities that, in fact, contrast one another. There’s a dreaded eternal death being contrasted over against a glorious eternal life. Both of which have become inescapable realities in this fallen world – each brought to pass by one man respectfully.

When it says, by one man’s offensedeath reigned by one” – it’s referring to Adam when he fell into sin in the Garden. His deadly offense made him sinner, as well as, all those who have been conceived as his progeny in this world (both physically and spiritually). Then this scripture declares — to ever so greatly contrast Adam’s fall into failure and deadly ruin – much more[which means: to a much greater degree] they which receive abundance of graceand of the gift of righteousnessshall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ!” Adam – before we were even born – threw us under the bus of reigning sin — and the curse of the absolute perfection demanding law of God. In other words, he threw us all under the dreaded reality of sin and death. But, praise God for His incarnated eternal Son, the Lord Jesus Christ! He is the indisputable Savior of all of the sheepfold – all the friends and family – of God! They are the ones that the text refers to when it says, they which receive abundance of grace and the gift of righteousness”. And, it is they that shall reign in life by one Jesus Christ! What are we to conclude from this? Well, it plainly tells us! On the one hand, we are to conclude that through one man, Adam — God’s condemning judgment came upon all mankind. And, on the other hand, through the righteousness – lit. the one eternally accomplished righteousness – of one man, Christ Jesus – there came upon all who have received His grace, eternal justification of life! Wow! Praise His Most Wonderful Name!

The spiritual principle is explicitly explained from vs.19. It lit. says: For as by the disobedience of the one manthe many were constituted sinnersso also in this same waythrough the obedience of one [Christ Jesus] the many shall be constituted righteous.”  Vs.20 then goes on to further gloriously explain: Moreoverthe law entered that the offense might abound.”  In other words, the law substantiates the fact that all of mankind (or, all of Adam-kind) are condemned sinners! Nevertheless, scripture goes on to say, But, where sin aboundedgrace did much more (or, grace exceedingly) abounded!” Again, this is true for all those that vs.17 has descriptively declared as having received an abundance of God’s saving grace. All of this to lead us to the pure truth of vs.21: That as sin hath reigned lit. in death, lit. so also grace might reign through righteousness to life eternalthrough Jesus Christ our Lord.” How Wonderful!! Let us praise Him for all that He has done!

For Christ’s Glory Only!

John Carpenter

Praises and Prayer Requests for April

Praises and Prayer Requests

Well dear ones, we are now only a couple of months away from the launch of our 66th annual camp season. We are committed and dedicated to serving the Lord in ministering the gospel of the glory, only, of the Lord Jesus Christ unto 6 to 12 year old children. This has been, and still is, the primary purpose of the existence of Camp Del-Haven. God has sustained us all these years. We truly do need your continual prayers for the spiritual fruitfulness of our faithful endeavors. God has ordained it for prayer to be a means of His accomplishing what He wills.

That being said, we humbly ask for you to please seek the Lord with us in His provision for willing men and women to help us to minister directly to the boys and girls that the Lord will send to us this year. Thank you all for your past faithfulness to provide. We love you and your persistent prayerful support. We praise our God for each and every one of you!

Pray also that the Lord will continue to lead in the completion of the renovation of our kitchen and shower house facilities. It is looking very good! Prayers of joy and thankfulness fill our hearts and our voices over what we see has happened – and is happening. How we long to see the completed outcome!

We still need to put everything back together. We still need someone who is an experienced spray painter to help us with the kitchen cabinets. We have got them sanded – please pray for someone to help us get them primed and painted. If you can be of service in this way, please do not hesitate to call us at: 816-690-8465 or 816-277-7071.

Thank you all for the way in which you have responded to our ongoing needs. We can’t tell you how that encourages us. We see it as a manifestation of God’s faithful leading and providing!

We have listed a few expense items that make our summer months a little more financially straining. You may notice that the list is half the size as last year due to the fact that we were able to paint the dining hall and begin the projects in the shower house and the kitchen. We are so thankful to the Lord and to those of you who have prayed with us and even given toward meeting the extra needs we had last year.

Van Rental to transport campers from Kansas City ($200/week x 6) = $1,200
Chemicals for the swimming pool ($200-300/week x 10) = $2000-$3,000
Recreation/Craft/Program Supplies = $400

Devotional for April 2018

“And what is the exceeding greatness of His power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of His mighty power, (20) which He wrought in Christ, when He raised Him from the dead, and set Him at His own right hand in the heavenly places, (21) far above all principality and power and might and dominion and every name that is named – not only in this world, but also in that which is to come…” [Eph.1:19-21]

This is the month in which we celebrate the resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, this text is indeed a good one to examine. Of all the different scriptural contexts that describe the genuine faith of the true believer who is still in this fallen world – this is one of the most amazing! For this portion of scripture plainly declares that true saving faith is all of God!

In these three verses, “power”, is being alluded to from five different original sources – and all of which are describing the power of our Lord God. It is no wonder that Jesus, Himself, declared from Jn.6:29: “This is the work of God, that ye believe on Him whom He hath sent.” In Eph.1:19, the Spirit of God through Paul declares that it, “is the exceeding greatness of God’s power to us who believe…”.The word used here for “power” literally means: miraculous power. This is a divine supernatural “power” that is not of this world at all! This is the same word for “power” that is used in Ro.1:16: “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ. For it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth…” And then, the rest of Eph.1:19 really nails it when it goes on to describe of those who truly do believe – that they believe “according to the working of God’s mighty power”!

The original word that is translated as “working” is uniquely used in the New Testament, in that, it is used only in reference to supernatural power – whether of God, or of the Devil. We get our English word “energy” from this Greek word. It describes supernatural power in exercise. In this context where genuine faith in Christ is concerned – it is God’s supernatural power in exercise. Check out the way that it is used as the word for “operation”, when describing “faith” in Col.2:12: “the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised Jesus from the dead. Next, there are the two words: “mighty power”. “Mighty” is from a word that connotes “strength” as it is used in Mk.12:30: “And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart – soul – mind – and strength”. But, in Eph.1:19 it is in direct reference with God’s “strong and mighty power”! The word that is inspired here — by the Holy Spirit — is a word that denotes a manifested “power” as being a specific act of God. Hence, all of these words connote the powerful and gracious work of God on our behalf – making us to be His true believing children while we are still in this tribulation filled world.

Eph.1:20-21 tells us that He completely wrought all of this out for us “in Christ”. According to Eph.1:3-4, this is where He chose us and placed us before the foundation of the world. Then it says that this was all completely worked out for us, “when He raised Him from the dead and set Him at His own right hand in heavenly places, (21) far above all principality and power [This fifth word for “power” means sovereign authority] and might and dominion – and every name that is named – not only in this [fallen-in-sin] world – but also in that which is to come” [the glorious new heavens and new earth wherein righteousness dwells]. In short, the sovereign power that God exercises and demonstrates in bestowing upon us the grace of His true saving faith is the same strong and mighty power that He gloriously manifested when He raised His beloved, incarnated and eternal Son from the dead! Praise His all-powerful Name!

For Christ’s Glory Only,

John Carpenter

Devotional for March 2018

“I am the good Shepherd: the good Shepherd giveth His life for the sheep.” “I am the good Shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. As the Father knoweth me – even so know I the Father, and I lay down my life for the sheep. And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold; them also – I must bring. And they shall hear my voice – and there shall be one fold – one Shepherd. Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again. No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down – and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.” “I and my Father are one.” [Jn.10:11,14-18,30]

This teaching is directly from Jesus. This is where He declares Himself to be the Good Shepherd”. This is both a very simple and yet a profoundly solemn truth. For it specifically deals with the eternally covenanted atonement of all the sins of all His sheep. It is the carnal and perverse spin of fallen men that has propagated so much confusion concerning this portion of God’s Word. E.g., in vs.11 Jesus announces in no uncertain terms that He is the Good Shepherd”. Then He immediately adds: the Good Shepherd giveth His life for the sheep.”

The word that Jesus uses for lifeis the same word for soulin Mt.10:28 – from where Jesus declares: “…fear not them which kill the body, but are not able to kill the SOUL: but rather fear Him which is able to destroy both SOUL and body in hell!” In other words, dear ones, Jesus says that we should fear only God – for He is the only one who can do that!

Then the Lord Jesus continues in vs.14-18 by giving us some strong clues as to who truly are His sheep. The first of which is that there is an intimate relationship between Him and His sheep. He says from vs.14 that He intimately knows His sheep. Secondly, He says that He, Himself, is also intimately known by them. The loving intimacy of this relationship is made plain by the literal way that vs.15 describes it. Jesus says that the relationship between Him and His sheep is Just as the Fatherknows Him – and He knows the Father. The loving relationship between the Father and Jesus is Biblically famous! Vs.15 closes with Jesus restating that He, the Good Shepherd,gives His (soul) life for the sheep.

Next the Lord Jesus makes a remarkably wonderful statement. He says that there are other sheep that He owns – which are not of this fold; and them also He must (lit.) lead. These others come from every race – kindred – tongue – tribe and generation! Praise the Lord! Every single individual one of them will hear His voice! They hear the gospel of the glory, only, of the Lord Jesus Christ! And, Jesus goes on to descriptively declare that there will be one fold – with one primary Shepherd!

Then Jesus brings up yet again – His eternally atoning sacrifice for all of His sheep throughout the whole history of fallen-in-sin humanity. And, He declares that the everlasting love of God permeates all of it. He says, Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my (soul) life, that I might take it again. (18) No man taketh it from mebut I lay it down of myself. I have power (lit. I have sovereign authority) to lay it down, and I have power (lit. I have sovereign authority) to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father!” This is the commandment of the New Covenant – which is the covenant between God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit – which was entered into before the very foundation of the world. This is the foundation of God which is firmly and eternally sealed in that He intimately knows those that are His. These are His sheep for whom He sacrificed His soul in order to eternally save all theirs. (2Ti.2:19)

For Christ’s Glory Only!

John Carpenter

Praises and Prayer Requests for March

Praises and Prayer Requests

Dear friends and family in Christ – the Lord is indeed demonstrating the truth unto us of Eph.3:20 which text declares: “Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think – according to the power that worketh in us – unto Him be glory…” The work being accomplished here at Del-Haven has all of us rejoicing in the Spirit and praising God for His wonderful supply – and the wonderful progress that is unfolding right before our eyes. Please be praying with us and giving thanks to the Lord for what He is doing – and at the same time — please seek from Him the protection that only He can give. For I know that the principalities and powers of the Evil One are outraged at what our sovereign Lord is doing for us. And, please be praying for God’s protection and rich blessings upon all the men who have labored so faithfully on our kitchen and the shower house and restrooms. They are not going to be looked upon favorably by the Adversary either! We need to be constantly fulfilling the biblical exhortation for us to pray for one another. May the Lord cause us to do so! By the way, we now the bottom cabinets in place and they need to be painted. If you know of anyone who has experience spray painting – I am told there is about half a day’s job getting these cabinets painted. Please pray with us for this.

We also have come to have a need for another refrigerator. Please be in prayer concerning this. If any of you know of a source of provision for this need – please give us a call: (816) 690-8465.

Yet another wonderful testimony of our Lord’s presence among us is in the provision of a brush hog mower. Wow! What timing! I am seeing the appearing of new grass just starting to come up. It won’t be long before it will spring forth and get ahead of me! It won’t be long and I will need to begin my season long pursuit at keeping the campground trimmed and ready for the children the Lord will be sending our way to hear the wonderful news of His gospel message.

Oh dear friends, please do not forget to be praying for all the children. Pray for all the repeaters that keep coming back to camp year after year. And, also, pray for the new campers that for the first time will set foot on Del-Haven soil. And, as always, please remember to be in prayer for all those who will be on our staff. There is always a turnover on our staff. We are always on the lookout for men and women who have a real desire to serve the Lord helping to reach children for the glory of Christ. These are the special ones that are on the front line of the spiritual battle that will be waged and won against the powers of darkness. This is the way of life at Camp Del-Haven. Praise the Name of the Lord – He is the Head of all principalities and powers! Our conquering Christ will prevail over and against all our foes! He always wins!

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