You are invited to join Hillsdale Baptist Church, Tampa, FL in person or online for today’s worship services.

Associate Pastor Brian Barber will be teaching the Sunday School Hour (9:15 AM).

A full broadcast of our morning worship service begins at 10:30 AM, and Pastor Smith is continuing his series in the Book of Job. Today’s message is titled, “The Sanctity of Human Life.”

A student lesson of this Sunday’s sermon is attached.03 – The Sanctity of Human Life – Job 10 – studentblank

The following is today’s bulletin letter to our church family and guests.

Good morning, and welcome to what I pray will be a “better than normal” day of worship! I appreciate the faithful, regular attendance of our church family, and the seventy to eighty “IP addresses” that join our worship services online each week. We are usually blessed to have guests who brave a “first time visit” to our services, and I trust they sense our gratitude for their visit.

The expression, “A New Normal,” is not a new one; however, the intensity of its use in the past year has been disconcerting. The “New Normal” has introduced an increase in government regulations that have bypassed the checks and balances of our Constitution. The result is that not only our liberties, but even our personal convictions are under assault. I fear “A New Normal” has been bantered about so much that we are slowly surrendering to intrusions into our personal lives that are not only oppressive, but draconian.

For many, “A New Normal” has become a justification for a slackness in things we once viewed as essential. COVID-19 has given many liberty from the expectation of going to work, going to school, or even going to church. We should question, freedom from whose expectations? Some employers believe their employees can work online at home, and be happy and efficient. Educators, who once condemned “home schooling,” now rally to “virtual classes.”

When it comes to church and worship, should we not question, “Who sets those expectations?” What are the Biblical expectations, and who has the authority to change them to a “New Normal”? Herein is the quandary in which believers, and the corporate church finds itself. From personal experience, COVID-19 is very real, and the weak and elderly should not be pressed to compromise their health and well-being. At the same time, none of us should accept a “COVID-19” pandemic as the path of a “New Normal.”

The simple fact is: While employment, and education might transition to an online experience, the nature of the church, and congregation of believers cannot. God’s Word has not changed, and neither have His expectations for His people,

Hebrews 10:24–25 – “24And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works: 25Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.”

With the heart of a shepherd,

Travis D. Smith
Senior Pastor

Copyright 2021 – Travis D. Smith