John Poitevint / May 15, 2022

Mark 1 41During Jesus’ earthly ministry He performed miracles. Why did Jesus perform miracles and what do those miracles mean for us today? Consider three reasons why Jesus performed these miracles…

1st -  He authored miracles to show compassion and meet human needs. In Mark 1, Jesus came upon a man with leprosy.  Verse 41 reads, “Then Jesus, moved with compassion, and said to him, ‘I am willing; be cleansed.” (NKJV).   

Most of the time, Jesus’ miracles were not necessarily planned, but were spontaneous because of His great love for us and our suffering. Why should this show of COMPASSION encourage us, today?  Because the Bible teaches us that Jesus is God in the flesh! 

What’s God like? Does God really know how I feel? This answers those questions. Our God is a God who is moved by our suffering, because He truly does love us!

2nd - Jesus performed miracles to confirm His true identity as God’s Son. One thing that stands out to me is HOW FEW HE ACTUALLY DID!

Miracles were just a small portion of Jesus’ ministry. THEY WERE NOT THE POINT! They served as “signs” pointing to something greater. Acts 2:22 tells us this. This “Wow-factor” was not and is not enough to sustain long-term faith.  At some point, folks turn elsewhere for their entertainment. The climatic miracle, of His death and resurrection from the grave points us to a DEEPER truth about Jesus and should cause us to place our unending FAITH in Him! (Luke 7:22)

A Final purpose for miracle is this… Jesus performed miracles to provide for us a glimpse of our world, as faithful children, to come. These miracles performed by Jesus are like a “flash of lightening that illuminates a dark night for a moment.”  That allows us to see clearly.

The miracles of Jesus are a snapshot of the Bible’s earlier chapters---The Garden of Eden and mankind existing with God in perfect harmony and peace. When Jesus healed the sick, restored sight to the blind, and calmed the storms---He Was Taking Us Back---for just a moment to Eden and the world described in Revelation 21-22.  Miracles provide us with a peek of our future home---HEAVEN!



John Poitevint / May 8, 2022

mothers dayThere is no gift more precious from God, to a son or daughter, than having a Godly mother (Proverbs 31:25-28). For nearly 58 years, this preacher was blessed with having a Godly mother who greatly influenced my life for good. For soon to be 41 years, I have watched my Godly wife influence our sons to become the Godly men they are. Both of these women used their Godly influence and example before me and my three sons (II Timothy 1:5; Titus 2:3-4; Hebrews 11:4).

My mother and my wife were and are women of great integrity and high moral values, instilling in me and my sons a sense of doing what is right, no matter what the outcome. Now, my mother is gone and I miss her every day. I miss all of the questions, the advice, and most of all her closing every conversation with, “son, I love you” and knowing she meant it! Now, I get to see it was a spectator’s view in watching this very same interaction between my wonderful wife and my three sons.

There was never any doubt my mom loved me, because regardless of age, my mom wanted to hug and kiss me every time she saw me---I was always her little boy. I get to see this again in the interaction between my wife and my three sons! There is something about the act of hugging, that brings two people closer together, showing a natural affection of loving and caring to another person. In fact, research shows that hugging gives a child a feeling of self-esteem and self-worth—a sense of abiding security in an insecure world.

Brethren and friends, if you’ve been blessed by still having your mom with you, have you hugged her today? If you haven’t please do so at every opportunity, because one day, she will no longer be around to hug. Treasure those times when you and your mom are drawn closer to one another through the simple act of hugging.

May the Lord richly bless all the Moms on Mother’s Day, all of the fine Christian women of this congregation here at Caverns Road, and may you as their child, grandchild, nephew, niece, and etc., express your tender love, care, and affection for them through the simple act of hugging.




THE EMPTY TOMB   John Poitevint / April 17, 2022

the living christRecently I read a sign outside a church building on a trip to Georgia. The sign read. “Because the tomb is empty, the church should be full”.  I have thought a great deal about that sign ever since. I concluded that while it is a catchy phrase, I’m not so sure it is true.  As I began to work on today’s sermon, “Easter - Preparation for Eternity”, I became more convinced that the “empty tomb” should not be the main point of our faith…yes, it is of grave importance, and yes, we could not make it to heaven without the resurrection, but on the other hand, there is something missing that is very crucial to the story of the empty tomb.

A close look at the Gospels reveals it to us.  When Mary Magdalene and the Apostles, John and Peter, leave the tomb after the discovery that it was empty---there is very little excitement and a lot of bewilderment about what it all meant (Mark 16:8; John 20:11). The scene that follows finds Jesus’ disciples struggling to believe the news (Mark 16:14) and hiding behind locked doors (John 20:19) …little had changed with the knowledge of the “empty tomb”.

So, what finally changed these disciples and sent them on a mission to “turn the world upside down” (Acts 17:6)? The answer: meeting the resurrected Jesus. It is only then in the Gospels that the disciples’ lives are transformed. Now doubts persisted (Matt. 28:17), but without encountering the risen Christ there is no transformation.

Friends and brethren, the issue today is not whether one knows the tomb is empty, but whether you have come in contact with the resurrected Jesus. The resurrection is not solely about the missing body of a dead Jesus in an empty tomb, but the presence of a live Jesus in our lives! The empty tomb simply leaves space for a LIVING LORD.

Finally, it is fair to ask where a person is most likely to meet this risen Savior. Religious folks give many answers, but one will do.  Paul tells us in 1 Corinthians 12  that Jesus has a body still present on the earth, and His body continues to live and serve today.  That BODY---is the CHURCH, and if a person seeks an encounter with the LIVING LORD, then being in CHURCH with His people is a good place to start.




John Poitevint / April 10, 2022

April Sermon Series SmallIn the coming weeks we will begin two series of lessons. The morning series, Sermons From the Plain, will begin on April 24th and the afternoon series, Who Am I, will begin on April 10th. 

Sermons From the Plain (from Luke, chapter 6):

1) “Touched by His Power” (Luke 6:12-19)

2) “WOW - Don’t Do That” (Luke 6:20-26)

3) “You Want Me To Do What… For My Enemy?” (Luke 6:27-36)

4) “Teacher’s Pet” (Luke 6:37-45)

5) “How Firm is Your Foundation” (Luke 6:46-49)

Who Am I (from Galatians):

1) “Make A Choice” (Galatians 1:1-12)

2) “Are You Standing In The Gap?” (Galatians 2:1-21)

3) “What Are You Wearing?”  (Galatians 3:5-29)

4) “Are You A Child Of The King?” (Galatians 4:1-31)

5) “Is It All About You…Or About Jesus?” (Galatians 5:13-26)

6) “Be A Burden Bearer” (Galatians 6:1-10).

Brethren, as you know I really enjoy preaching from series because it is my belief that God’s Word is very effective when a theme is a part of our study. Please look ahead and study II Timothy 2:15, so these lessons from God’s inspired word (II Tim. 3:16-17) can have the most effect in your lives.


MELCHIZEDEK   John Poitevint, March 27, 2022

melchizedekIn this morning’s text from Genesis 14, we meet an interesting character, Melchizedek. Very little is said about this mysterious Bible character, but his place is of great importance. Melchizedek gets three verses in the Old Testament and is mentioned only one other time in the O.T.; however, he gets three chapters in the New Testament.

So, what is the story? In Genesis 14, we meet up with this mysterious King/Priest… Abram (Abraham), who has just returned from battle with Sodom. Verse 10 tells us that the King of Sodom and Gomorrah fled during the battle. After Abram returns, he brings the people of Sodom back to their king. Melchizedek, also a king, is present in this valley, as well. The text does not say why he is there. Maybe there was some kind of political alliance between Melchizedek and the King of Sodom. The text doesn’t say, only that this was the Valley of the Kings.

Melchizedek came from the city of Salem, which would eventually be known as Jerusalem. Not only was he the king there, but he was also a priest of the Most High God. He appears here in the text, not as a king, but as a priest. It was common for those coming back from victorious battle to offer sacrifices and thanks for the victory. Melchizedek was there to facilitate those actions. He may have been there to be a witness to whatever deal that took place between Abram and the King of Sodom. He would have been an impartial witness. We know that the King of Sodom offered all the spoil of the battle to Abram, but he refused it since he did not want the King of Sodom to claim he had made Abram rich. Melchizedek did take tithes from Abram, and he also blessed Abram, showing that he was greater to Abram in terms of the priesthood.

Nevertheless, while Melchizedek may have been there for all these reasons, we do know that God had him there for another reason, to show there was another priesthood before that of Levi. Another priesthood was needed in order for the Messiah to fulfill the role of permanent High Priest. This was prophesied in Psalm 110:4, “The Lord has sworn And will not relent, ‘You are a priest forever According to the order of Melchizedek”.  

The Hebrew writer tells us in Hebrews 7 that the priesthood of Melchizedek served as the standard through which Jesus Christ would be our high priest. Moreover, it is a superior system of priesthood because it does not succumb to all of the problems the Levitical priesthood had. Hebrews 7 tells us that the priesthood of Melchizedek was unending, better than Aaron’s, received tithes from Abram, blessed Abram, and makes it possible for the Christ to be a high priest.

So, brethren, while we may not know exactly why Melchizedek decided to show up after Abram’s return from battle (thus the mystery), we do know that God wanted him there for other reasons.



NO MORE EXCUSES    John Poitevint / March 20, 2022

No More ExcusesWhen I think of Moses the first image that I think of is—COURAGE. I see this great patriarch holding up his hands as the Red Sea is divided, (the scene in Hollywood’s version with Charlton Heston standing on a rock and calling on God to open this great body of water).  I can almost feel the fresh spray of water-droplets in the air, and hear the sound of furious hooves in the distance. For the past four weeks (today will make five), we have also seen that this great man was like so many of us---an EXCUSE maker. 

Moses answered God’s call from the burning bush with the words, “Here am I” (Exodus 3:4) but then, whether out of apprehension (fear) or humility, he quickly added 5 excuses as to why God should pick someone else to carry God’s message.

  • Exodus 3:11—” I’m not good enough” –Moses was content with a shepherd’s life in Midian. God so often picks the most unlikely person to fulfill His works and mission. Jonah, Gideon, Peter, and YOU and ME. God sees past the man or woman standing before Him and sees eternity. He sees our potential…God did not accept Moses’ first excuse; it is the same one we all have used in our lives too, ---He won’t accept this excuse!
  • Exodus 3:13— “I don’t have all the answers”—As a boy Moses was raised in Pharaoh’s household. He had every advantage to learn and develop intelligence. He was no doubt well read, educated, with tremendous abilities. But he (like all of us from time to time) missed the point—It was not about Moses—IT WAS ABOUT GOD. This excuse did not fly. Moses did not need to know it all because it was NEVER about him in the first place.
  • Exodus 4:1---“People won’t believe me” –This excuse is a natural human instinct. Being vulnerable is scary—especially to a potential hostile group. God did not let Moses hide behind this excuse. He gave him three miracles—a rod than turned into a serpent, a hand that could turn leprous, and the ability to turn water into blood. God did not dismiss this excuse. He equipped Moses to overcome it.
  • Exodus 4:10— “I’m a terrible public speaker”—Now I’m going to call Moses’ bluff on this one. We have lots of Biblical evidences of his great orations. Maybe Moses was just being humble, or perhaps God truly used a flawed vessel. I kind of believe both are true. God does call the flawed —sometimes--- to carry out His work.  He takes the humble and works through their flaws. Excuse #4---DID NOT WORK!
  • Exodus 4:13— “I’m not qualified”—Moses’ final excuse is desperate. “please Lord anybody but me!” This final excuse wore out God’s patience. Moses carried out God’s mission!

Brethren, God works with each of us where we are and takes us to where He wants us to be! PLEASE---NO MORE EXCUSES! “Choose you this day whom you will serve…BUT as for ME AND MY HOUSE…we will SERVE THE LORD” Joshua 24:15.  Let’s all serve the Lord without excuse.


EXCUSES, EXCUSES! John Poitevint / March 6, 2022

Excuses ExcusesOver the past few Sundays, we have looked at the story of God speaking to Moses from the burning bush on Mt. Horeb in Exodus chapters 3 & 4. We have looked at the story in light of the EXCUSES Moses attempted…to persuade God to change His mind about sending Moses to rescue the children of Israel from Egyptian bondage. EXCUSES are an everyday part of the life for most folks. As a child of God, we need to understand that when The Lord is our PILOT it’s “in the script” and we are going to be successful (Jeremiah 29:11), just as Moses was.

A “Christian” singing group wrote a song titled “EXCUSES” that illustrates this point with the following lyrics:

Excuses, excuses, you'll hear them every day.
And the Devil he'll supply them, if the church you stay away.
When people come to know the Lord, the Devil always loses
So to keep them folks away from church, he offers them excuses.

In the summer it's too hot. And, in the winter, it's too cold.
In the spring time when the weather's just right, you find someplace else to go.
Well, it's up to the mountains or down to the beach or to visit some old friend.
Or, to just stay home and kinda relax and hope that some of the kin folks will start dropping in.

Well, the church benches are too hard. And, that choir sings way too loud.
Boy, you know how nervous you get when you're sitting in a great big crowd.
The doctor told you, "Now, you better watch them crowds. They'll set you back."
But, you go to that old ball game because you say "it helps you to relax."

Well, a headache Sunday morning and a backache Sunday night.
But by worktime Monday morning, you're feeling quite alright.
While one of the children has a cold, "Pneumonia, do you suppose?"
Why the whole family had to stay home, just to blow that poor kid's nose.

Excuses, excuses, you'll hear them every day.
And the Devil he'll supply them if the church you stay away.
When people come to know the Lord, the Devil always loses
So to keep them folks away from church, he offers them excuses.

Well, the preacher he's too young. And, maybe he's too old.
The sermons they're not hard enough. And, maybe they're too bold.
His voice is much too quiet-like. Sometimes he gets too loud.
He needs to have more dignity. Or, else he's way too proud.

Well, the sermons they're too long. And, maybe they're too short.
He ought to preach the word with dignity instead of "stomp and snort."
Well, that preacher we've got must be "the world's most stuck up man."
Well, one of the lady's told me the other day, "Well, he didn't even shake my hand."

Excuses, excuses, you'll hear them every day.
And the Devil he'll supply them if the church you stay away.
When people come to know the Lord, the Devil always loses
So to keep them folks away from church, he offers them excuses.
So to keep them folks away from church, he offers them EXCUSES!

Brethren, and friends—let us realize as Solomon of old did, “there are no new things under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 1:9). God has heard them all!  Let’s put Christ first (Matthew 6:33), and make NO EXCUSES.  Let us declare with Joshua, “Choose you this day whom you will serve…but as for me and my house…we will serve the Lord” (Joshua 24:15).

THE PARABLE OF EXCUSES   John Poitevint / February 27, 2022

Parable of Excuses Rev 2 4Last Lord’s Day we began a series of lessons by this title, “No More Excuses”. Excuse making has been apart of the life of man since Adam and Eve. Eve made the serpent (Gen.13) and the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil her excuse for sinning, and Adam’s excuse, his wife (Gen. 3:12). Today, from age 2-100, mankind has learned to daily make excuses for everything in life.

In Luke 14:15-23, we have what is sometimes called, The Parable of the Supper or Banquet. It might equally be called, “The Parable of Excuses”. In this parable a man gives a supper (banquet) and invites a number of folks. But the invitees all have excuses for why they cannot come. In response, the host becomes angry, and instructs his servants to find absolutely anybody to fill the places at the table and vows that the original invitees will not be allowed in.

Now in the context of Jesus’ ministry, this is an obvious comparison about the Jews and the Gentiles. The Jews, God’s children, for various reasons (excuses) chose not to be a part of God’s spiritual feast of fellowship, and God (His original plan) invited any who would come (Gentiles/heathens). But brethren, it is also a valuable lesson for us as well. It is sad, but true, that many will lose their immortal souls because of excuses they use to justify their disobedience.

These excuses begin with respect to obeying the Gospel in the first place. Some say that they would be baptized for the forgiveness of their sins, except that their family has always held to a denominational tradition. Others say that they are too wicked to become Christians, so they need to first get their lives straightened out. Still others say they are “not ready yet” for a variety of reasons. All of these are excuses, that allow the person (sinner) to put off their salvation indefinitely, and ultimately, many times to their ruin.

Excuses also often emerge when a Christian fails to assemble regularly (Heb. 10:25). Of course, there are legitimate reasons not to assemble—illness, work (though the Christian whose work schedule often keeps them from assembling is well advised to look for another shift or job), and these days, vulnerability to Covid. Other excuses (the preacher preaches too long, or is boring, singing is flat, or, nobody there likes me, etc.) are less legitimate.

It is worth asking, though, whether the obstacles that keep us from assembling also keep us from worldly activities we enjoy. Work schedules can be frustrating, but we can’t help but wonder about the person who is never able to assemble on Sunday morning but can somehow manage to go fishing on Saturday mornings. Likewise, if we avoid worship services because we are afraid of the coronavirus, but don’t seem to be afraid of crowded restaurants, movie theaters and vacationing at the mountains or the beach. Maybe it’s time to examine our motivations more closely (Rev. 2:4).

Brethren whatever our excuses, we must recognize that we have far less reason to disobey than Jesus did. In Heaven, He was equal with God. He was guiltless and did not deserve to die, and we were guilty and did not deserve to be saved. Nonetheless, rather than offering excuses, He offered Himself in obedience to His Father. As His disciples, is our call to do anything less?

USING THE LORD'S NAME IN... VAIN    John Poitevint / February 20, 2022

Lords Name In Vain“You shall not take the Name of the Lord your God in vain, for the Lord will not hold him guiltless who takes His name in vain” Exodus 20:7 (NKJV).

The Ten Commandments are pretty straightforward. Nine of them for sure…”Don’t kill; don’t steal; don’t lie; don’t commit adultery; etc. You know them all. The problem is not that we don’t understand them. It’s the keeping them that is hard.

One of the Commandments is a bit difficult to translate and not surprisingly, is often misunderstood. The KJV translators put it like this: “Thou shalt not take the Name of the Lord Thy God in Vain…” (Exodus 20:7). For most folks, (particularly in the South), that commandment is simple---Just don’t say, “G** D***.”

If we look closely, from the Hebrew Bible, it is the intent of this verse we need to be careful of. You see, it’s not about cursing only. The Hebrew people had the utmost respect for God’s Name, so much so, that they wouldn’t even say it out loud; however, the heart of the Third Commandment is about using God’s Name for selfish purposes.

In today’s world, it is done, often and without realizing it---many use God’s Name in Vain!  Sayings, such as, “If the Good Lord sees fit, and the creek doesn’t rise”,  or “God is My Copilot”, etc., are sayings used especially by those in high offices, celebrities, athletes, and yes, even you and me. They are used especially when so many acknowledge God through public means to make others feel that the users are pious folks, when in reality, THEY ARE NOT. Sound familiar? At best, such folks, (we may be one of them from time to time), while maybe sincere, are misguided. They are demonstrating a woeful ignorance of this command from God.

Jesus did not take kindly to public displays of piety (Matthew 6:1-8), and if the Bible is as reliable as we all believe, then we should be careful how we use God’s name in our public opportunities.  Jesus admonished his followers  in His most famous sermon, as He lashed out at the “pray at the football game crowd…” , to pray in our closets and our Father in Heaven, “who sees in secret will Himself reward you openly.” (Matthew 6:4). He had similar instructions for our acts of charity, telling us not to let our right hand know what our left hand is doing. (Matthew 6:3).

Brethren, may God help us all to show reverence to His Name.  Let us not take or use it in vain.




John Poitevint / January 30, 2022

science proves BibleFor many years I have heard preachers and teachers quote a book by Peter Stoner called "Science Speaks", and how it shows that science and the Bible agree. Recently, I tried to find a copy of the book so I could examine it and learn more. The book was first published in 1958 by Moody Press. After searching many sites, I was able to find a revised edition published in 1976.

Peter Stoner was Chairman of the Mathematics and Astronomy Departments at two Colleges in California in the 1950s through the early 1970s. In his day, he was a renown scholar in these fields, but more importantly, he was a Christian. In his book, Dr. Stoner points out that the Bible, written 2000 years before scientific discoveries, is without error from a scientific point of view!

In his book, he gave examples, such as:

  • The shape of the earth is mentioned in Isaiah 40:22.
  • Gravity is found in Job 26-7.
  • Ecclesiastes 1:6 mentions atmospheric circulation.
  • A reference to ocean currents can be found in Psalm 8:8.
  • The hydraulic cycle is described in Ecclesiastes 1:7 and Isaiah 55:10.
  • The second law of Thermodynamics is outlined in Psalm 102:25-27 and Romans 8:21.

These are only a few of the examples of Science truths written in scripture long before they were “discovered” by scientists.

Dr. Stoner then considers the Order of Creation as presented in Genesis 1:1-13. He presents argument after argument from a scientific viewpoint, to sustain the order which Genesis lays out. Then he asks, “What chance did Moses have when writing the first chapter (of Genesis) of getting 13 items all correct and in satisfactory order?”  His calculations concluded it would be one chance in 31,135,104,000,000,000,000,000 (1 in 31 x 10 to 21st power). AMAZING! Then, he concluded, “Perhaps God wrote such an account in Genesis so that in these latter days, when science is more developed, we would be able to verify his account and know for CERTAIN that God created this planet and the life on it.”

Brethren, the apostle Paul was correct when he wrote in Romans 1:20, “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are CLEARLY SEEN, being understood by the THINGS THAT ARE MADE, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are WITHOUT EXCUSE.”


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