Arcola United Methodist Church

Dear Friends:

In light of the recent shooting in Las Vegas, it’s worth our time considering the problem of human evil and God’s response to it.

In Genesis 6-9 we read the story of Noah, when God sees the wickedness of humankind and decides to wipe out all flesh from the face of the earth.  He agrees to spare Noah and a remnant of living beings in the ark.  God then makes a rainbow as a sign of a covenant that he will never destroy the world again.

Each time his chosen people, the Jews - the nation of Israel, rebelled against God, a foreign nation would overrun them and there would be war.  They would repent and cry to God for deliverance, and God would save them.  This went on many times; the people would do things their own way, God would punish them, and then the people would repent and God would save them.  Even though God’s people would kill those sent to bring God’s message to them (the prophets), God never gave up on his people.

Finally he sent us his own son to save us, Jesus Christ.  The purpose of his life and sacrificial death was not judgement, but mercy.

So even though we may ask the question where is God in all of this, I think we really need to ask another question - Where are we in all of this?

Jesus told us that no one knows when God the Father will return to remake the world and destroy evil forever.  That will certainly be a tipping point in human history.

My concern is for another tipping point:  One that occurs because we’ve become too deluded to know the truth, and too numb to fight injustice.  Can we really reconcile the command of God to love others and not kill them with our current gun laws that reflect our fear and need to show our individuality?  Is not our identity in God, who made us in his image?  As disciples of Jesus Christ, aren’t we supposed to deny ourselves and take up the cross and follow him?  In that way, we see the truth of God and our delusion goes away.

As to becoming numb, if we don’t practice living in the peace of God’s word, our hearts will be hardened by the troubles of this world, and instead of being conformed to the image in which we were made, we become conformed to this world, which will ultimately be our undoing.

Our blindness in this means that we not only don’t know the tipping point for God, we don’t know the tipping point for humans.  What I mean is that we may continue to practice evil upon each other, and there will come a day which springs upon us like a trap.  We will spread this disease of evil and delusion until we get to a point of no return.  If this is our choice, what will God do about that?  God makes us free to make up our own minds and hearts .

In Joshua 24:15 we read: Decide this day which god you will serve.  As for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.

God has made his intention clear to save us through Jesus Christ.  What is our intention?

In the end it won’t be God who destroys this world, it will be us. The question is: How much longer can we wait?





Family is a great blessing from God!

Pastor Scott and his beloved sister, Sharon

        Who Is Our Pastor?

Pastor Scott Griffith, a lover of M&Ms, is the son of Paul and Trudy Griffith.

He was raised in New City, New York. After graduating from Summit High School in 1982, Rev. Griffith attended Kean University where he earned his undergraduate degree and a dual certification in music and elementary education.

In 1994 he was called into ministry by the Diamond Hill United Methodist Church in Berkeley Heights, New Jersey, where he had been serving as Music Director. After serving for five years there, he was appointed to a two-point charge in Kearny, New Jersey. Before coming to Arcola United Methodist Church here in Paramus as a full time pastor, Rev. Griffith was serving as a full time pastor at Asbury United Methodist Church in Egg Harbor Township, NJ.

Pastor Scott serves Arcola by singing in the choir, sitting in on all meetings and getting involved with the youth. Among Rev. Griffith's interests are reading, collecting coins and listening to music.

 Won't you come and be a part of our ministry? Our service starts at 10:00am with fellowship to follow.