Monday, December 29, 2014

God Dreams Bigger Than You Do

Genesis 41:42  Then Pharaoh took his signet ring from his hand and put it on Joseph's hand, and clothed him in garments of fine linen and put a gold chain about his neck.
The 17 year old boy Joseph who had his varicolored robe ripped from him and was sold into slavery could have never imagined that one day Pharaoh would robe him in his own fine linens. God's dream was bigger than Joseph's dream. Yet Joseph also couldn't see that it would take a dungeon to get him there. Are we willing to let the Lord strip us of the things that we dream of in order to robe us in His righteousness? In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp explores the narrative of the life of Joseph.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday December 28th, 2014. 

Monday, December 22, 2014

Good News of Great JOY

Luk 2:10  And the angel said to them, "Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.
Joy is a consistent theme throughout scripture but our experience of it is far from what we naturally expect. What we expect is more in line with the word "Happiness" but what is offered through Jesus at His coming is Joy. When you understand that the "good news of great joy" includes the cross you can stare down even death and cry "JOY"! This is the good news.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday December 22nd, 2014.

Monday, December 15, 2014

1 John: We Know

1Jn 5:13  I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life.
Because of the Gospel of Jesus Christ there are a lot of things that we know. We know we have eternal life. We know we have confidence to pray to the Father and he hears us. We know that we are loved. In this final sermon from 1 John, Church Elder Martin Hornfischer teaches us what we can know through the Gospel.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday December 14th, 2014.

Saturday, December 13, 2014

Leaving an inheritance

I have thought a little over the past several years of ministry about legacy. What will I be remembered for? Today I lost a mentor and friend. Randy and his beautiful daughter Ariana died in a freak interstate accident. My heart is heavy for myself and Shell as we personally grieve. My heart aches for his amazing wife Jennifer and his three other children. There are no words for the pain so I want to give words to the joy. 
Randy was my youth pastor and first ministry boss as I interned under him the summer of 2000. Randy had a unique way of explaining God's Word in a way that people could understand and grab on to. His passion for loving Jesus was only equalled by his determination to show teens that Jesus was worth everything. I saw in him a preacher that I wanted to be like in my ministry. He also loved his wife well. Adored is a much better term. I remember going on youth trips and seeing the longing in Randy's eyes to be home with his bride. When he performed Shell and my marriage I did think that I wanted to love Shell like Randy loved Jen. 
Proverbs 13:22 says "A good man leaves an inheritance to his children's children..." The text is talking about money but I believe there is a spiritual truth too. A good man pours into his children in such a way that his grandchildren are blessed. Seeing the tributes to Randy have reminded me that that's true. If you've been blessed by any aspect of my ministry, it's because you've received an inheritance from Randy that he shared with me. An inheritance of joy in Jesus. He has his great joy now. And I would share with you the same Joy. I will see you again Ari and Randy and it will be in joy. 

I've started a gofundme account to be used by Jennifer however she sees fit. Please share and give as you feel led. 

Monday, December 8, 2014

1 John: The Testimony Never Ends

1 John 5:6-12
1John 5:11-12  And this is the testimony, that God gave us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. Whoever has the Son has life; whoever does not have the Son of God does not have life.
Your testimony (the story of Jesus' work in the Gospel in you) contains your salvation experience, but no more ends there than your marriage does at "I do". In fact a billion years from now you'll still be sharing your testimony of Christ's goodness toward you.
But have your ever heard that Jesus has a testimony? What is it and what does it say about Him? In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp takes us through 1 John 5:6-12 and we'll see that:1. Jesus has a testimony, 2. We have a testimony, and 3.The world needs our witness.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday December 7th, 2014.

Monday, December 1, 2014

1 John: It takes faith to love

1 John 5:4
For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world - our faith.
A Chiasm (><) is a Greek literary style of communicating a specific point using a similar choice of words. Like an X is big on both sides and comes to a singular point in the middle, so a chiasm phrases statements in such a way to illustrate a big idea. Here in 1 John 5 the apostle shows that the Gospel frames all obedience to God in His commands, and that inside the context of the Gospel is how we can truly love people. All of this is accomplished by faith.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday November 30th, 2014.

Monday, November 24, 2014

1 John: Abiding Love

1John 4:16  So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.

When Jesus tells us to "abide in my love" what does he mean? Just hang out with Jesus? Feel "funny" about Jesus? No, abiding love is a holistic and love DOES more than it it ever FEELS. The Apostle Jon describes a vertical (God <--> Man) abiding love, and a horizontal abiding love (man <--> his fellow man) and in this sermon Pastor Chris describes what we do in abiding love.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday November 23rd, 2014.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Exciting Normalcy

November is about the only time that I would say, for me, that ministry life feels normal. It's not that it's absent of busy schedules, it's just routine schedule. Nothing normally out of the ordinary. That said, normal is some exciting stuff around here. Yesterday afternoon we sent a team from GBC 60 miles north to share the testimonies of two native ladies who's lives have been changed through the Gospel. The reports I've heard were they were well received and we pray that the Holy Spirit would do the same work in the hearers as He did in these two ladies.

Meetings are normal too. We have a weekly meeting of SEND guys to talk through vision, planned trips, personal challenges, and planting churches. We have a monthly meeting of the elders of GBC where we prayerfully look to the spiritual health of the church. We also have a bi annual meeting for the SEND North interior team which currently represents three villages and 8 missionary families. Here we dream and ask what we can do to join God in His work to make disciples and plant churches. Meetings can be boring, but not when the Gospel is involved. 

Then there's what we would call everyday life normal. Fourwheeler fall through the ice? (Not mine by the way) Happens man. Sure we'll go play arctic AAA service. I love that brothers are not afraid to ask for help, and I love that there are brothers who will help. The Gospel creates a family that would otherwise not exist. Exciting normal. 

So how about you? Feel busy, worn thin, or have too much on your plate? Look through the lense of living and shareing the Good News of Jesus. If it can't be shaped by the Gospel, I'm convinced it shouldn't be what you are doing. 

Special Giving Idea: the SEND North 206 airplane that we use to travel to villages without evangelical churches costs $260/hr to operate. Maybe this Christmas you'd like to sponsor a trip or two. Average round trip time is about 3 hours to our furthest village. Email me at for giving details. 

Things you can be praying for:
- That people would come to know Jesus in Galena and the surrounding villages. 
- That dorm staff would find the selfcare that they need as they pour themselves into teenagers lives. 
- For the team led by Bill Pagaran of Carry the Cure who is comin to serve in Galena this week. 

1 John: Here is Love

1 John 4:10 "In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins."

The world offers a paint by numbers cheap imitation of the masterpiece called God's Love. Love has become so misunderstood that the fundamental questions about it have to be re-answered and not assumed. Where does love come from? What is love? What are we to do with love? If you take away one lesson from this, let it be this: God loves you. If that does not boggle your mind you have no earthly idea what love is.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday November 16th, 2014.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

1 John: Not everything is Christian

1 John 4:1-6 The Apostle John gives a strong warning that not everyone who says they're teaching a Christian message actually is. That's why he warns us to "test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world." In this sermon Pastor Chris shows what John says we aught to do to test what is being said. Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday November 9th, 2014.

Monday, November 3, 2014

1 John: Practical Humble Saving Love

1 John 3:11-26 
What does it mean for a disciple of Jesus to "Love one another"? Does it give life or take it? Does it meet practical needs, or is all talk? Is love self serving, or does it operate in humility? And finally does it make us look more like Jesus. In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp shares what Christian love looks like.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday November 2nd, 2014.

1 John 3:11-26 What does it mean for a disciple of Jesus to "Love one another"? Does it give life or take it? Does it meet practical needs, or is all talk? Is love self serving, or does it operate in humility? And finally does it make us look more like Jesus. In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp shares what Christian love looks like. Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday November 2nd, 2014.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Prayer is a powerful weapon

Jon Casey blessed the Galena Bible Church this past Sunday and preached on the power and nature of prayer which has been a theme we've been encouraging for the congregation of Galena. I hope you're blessed by it too.
Delivered to Galena Bible Church Sunday October 26th, 2014.

Monday, October 20, 2014

1 John Children of God

1John 3:1  See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are. The reason why the world does not know us is that it did not know him.

When we understand the "kind of love" (this is the Gospel) that God has "given to us" (this is grace) and are adopted as Children of God, our lives look different. We no longer live a life practicing sin, but rather practicing righteousness. In this sermon Pastor Chris walks through 1 John 3:1-11 and unpacks this easily misunderstood concept.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday October 19th, 2014.

Seasons Change but Christ is the same.

FBC Lake Jackson team members working with Samaritans Purse show off their pike catch.

Snow has stuck. The cranes have flocked together and are heading to warmer climates. The sound of saws and hammers have fading out. And it's getting colder. All indications the seasons are changing, and in the midst of annual change we praise God that Christ is the same and the Gospel is still  true! It's been too long since I updated on general ministry. Summer was busy and fruitful. Samaritans Purse was able to mobilize close to 300 volunteers from June 1 to October 1. It was incredible to see the skill of these volunteers who built 7 completely new homes and did major remodeling work in about a dozen others. We were blessed to be able to support and encourage the volunteers while they were on the ground in Galena. I had the joy of getting to take a good number of them out pike fishing or sightseeing on the river.

Alanna Tedder, our SEND North Summer missionary, and Don Ernst, Pastor of Huslia Community Church.
 In our partnership with SEND North we had the privilege to host a Summer missionary from MS. Alanna served in 6 villages/rural camps for about two months. During her time in Galena we hosted her in our home as she connected with kids through softball and church events.

We had a significant challenge this summer in that we had work teams lined up to come complete several large projects that were put off because of the flood. The installation of a new wood-gasification boiler, new windows at the church building, and the completion of the mission house which was donated to the church and moved onsite last Summer. Unfortunately all our work teams had to cancel due to various reasons out of our control. We were SO thankful that Samaritans purse was able to squeeze our projects into their busy schedule. The new windows in the church look outstanding and are much tighter than the old windows, which will hopefully save us on heat. The Boiler room and boiler are installed and heating things nicely. The mission house (soon to be renamed but we're not sure to what yet) is almost done. We lack the heating system, water tank install, and flooring. We are looking forward to that being off the "to-do" list.


Fall was a productive time as well. Preston was able to accompany me on his first moose hunt experience. It think I ruined him. We walked out to the field and there stood two huge bulls. I dropped this one (64") and the work began. With our meet in the freezer in the early season, I was able to help several other guys go out. To my knowledge now one was left in need of meat at the end of the season. It was truly God supplying.

In late August GBC hosted Dean Trune for a three day prayer conference. Dean taught on prayer, fasting, journalling, and intimacy with God. It was an encouragement to our body on how to be people devoted to prayer.
Ministry has begun to settle into a normal winter's routine: Teen Sunday school classes began earlier this month, A mid week Bible Study at our house kicked off last week with about 15 in attendance, YoungLife Club/Campaigners/Wildlife are in full swing, and CEF Kid's Club started this past Friday. As you can see from other posts we've been going through a series in 1 John and have been having great dialog with people concerning what God is teaching them through this study.

Things you can be praying for:
  • Continued prayer for light to overcome the darkness. There have been so many deaths in the villages it's unreal. Pray that the enemy would be held back and that God would send laborers to the field.
  • Plant Alaska - This week I'll be traveling to Anchorage to meet with pastors from around the state who desire to see churches planting churches. Pray that the Holy Spirit would give wisdom into God's mind and heart on the matter.
  • Patience/endurance - Our congregation is really small. Normally around 35-40 adults. Most are involved in active volunteer ministry in some capacity. Which is truly remarkable! Many are feeling stretched and weary. Pray that God would freshly awaken passion and endurance to press forward. There is still SO much to do.

Monday, October 13, 2014

1 John: The End is Near...and has been for 2000 years

1John 2:26
I write these things to you about those who are trying to deceive you.
There are WAY too many books and movies on end times theology. I say there are too many because they are 99.9% in existence for profit. The other 0.1% are actually looking at what scripture has to say about how we are to live in these last days. 2000 years we've been waiting in the last days, and still Jesus is faithful. The spirit of the antichrist is active as well. You've been confronted with it. In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp walks through the Apostle John's warnings about who the antichrist is and how we are to respond to the deceit that he brings.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday October 12th, 2014.

Monday, October 6, 2014

1 John: What Holds Your Heart?

Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.
(1John 2:15)
Idolatry is alive and well in the world today. Although we think we are civilized beyond this ancient form of worship we simply substitute pride, position, relationships, and religion for the little statues of old. This is because we have within us deep longings that God made and called good, and since the fall we have been trying to fill those longings with anything other than what God intends: Himself. When deep longings turn to depraved lusts we have lost the essence of love, and this is far too easy to do.
In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp looks at 1 John 2:15-17 and asks the question "What holds your love?" Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday October 5th, 2014.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Commanded to Love (1John 2:1-11)

Contrary to what a lot of people think, the Bible isn't a book of does and don't. It's a redemptive story of humanity showing how as we were given rules to live by, it was impossible for us to follow God. As such we were/are in need of someone to substitute his life for ours. Thankfully "we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous." 1John 2:1
Now are commands from God are not rules oriented but Love oriented. Love the Lord your God, and love your neighbor as yourself.
In this sermon Pastor Chris explores 1John 2:1-11 in the light of the commandments of Jesus.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church Sunday December 29th, 2014.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Walking in the light of the Gospel

1 John 1:5-10
What does it mean for us to "walk in the light as He (Jesus) is in the light"? The revealing nature of God's Holiness always exposes our sin. This is NEVER a bad thing, but rather is the only way we can see just how deeply we need the Gospel's work in our lives.
In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp looks at 1John 1:5-10 and explores these ideas.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday September 21st, 2014.

Monday, September 15, 2014

That you may know you have eternal life.

1st John has a lot to say about what it means to be saved. How do you know you have eternal life? What is eternal life? How are we to share this with others? These questions and many others we will be looking at as we go through this new series in 1st John: That You May Know You Have Eternal Life.
In this sermon we look at what is involved in the sharing of the Gospel: 1. Testimony, 2. Truth, 3. Invitation, and 4. Joy. Hope you enjoy and learn along with us.
Delivered by Pastor Chris Kopp to the Galena Bible Church on September 14th, 2014.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Hebrews: Check Your Faith

The old time lesson of "an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure" rings as true today as it did when it was first said. To prevent apathy in our Christian life we are always encouraged by scripture to evaluate our faith. In what or in whom does our faith reside. It is far too easy for us to misplace our faith in that which won't last. Hebrews 13 is a shotgun pattern of subjects that all serve to remind us of this truth. We can trust in and do things that have nothing to do with Jesus, the one to whom our faith should belong.
Sermon delivered by pastor Chris Kopp. Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday September 7th, 2014.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Hebrews: Disciplined for God's Glory

For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.
(Hebrews 12:11)

Continuing in the faith is much like an endurance race. There is aways challenges, but it is easier if we have discipline and are trained. The same that it would be impossible for the average person to run a marathon without training, we will not finish the race well if we don't have discipline. 
In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp shares how we are disciplined for God's Glory. Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday August 31st, 2014.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The Church's Greatest Need - Prayer

Galena Bible Church was blessed to host Dean Trune for a three day conference on Spiritual disciplines and prayer. Dean challenged the church to be a people committed to prayer in this sermon delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday Aug. 24th, 2014.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Hebrews: Foundations of Faith

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it the people of old received their commendation.
(Hebrews 11:1-2)
In a current culture that values celebrities over true heroes, it is no wonder that we truely lack people who we can look up to and seek to emulate. Hebrews chapter 11 gives an account of heroes of the Old Testament who, by faith, obtained a good testimony. They make it such that we have assurance in life, assurance in death, and assurance in God's loving sovereignty. 
Sermon delivered to the Galena Bible Church by pastor Chris Kopp, Sunday August 18th, 2014.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Hebrews: All or Nothing

But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who have faith and preserve their souls.
(Hebrews 10:39)

Hebrews 10 begins to unpack what it practically means for us that Christ is better than all things previous. In this sermon we look at how Faith, Hope, and Love interconnect to show that the Christian life is an all or nothing relationship.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday August 10th, 2014.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Hebrews: The Tabernacle

But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things that have come, then through the greater and more perfect tent (not made with hands, that is, not of this creation) he entered once for all into the holy places, not by means of the blood of goats and calves but by means of his own blood, thus securing an eternal redemption. For if the blood of goats and bulls, and the sprinkling of defiled persons with the ashes of a heifer, sanctify for the purification of the flesh, how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our conscience from dead works to serve the living God.
(Hebrews 9:11-14)
No commanded ritual Old Testament practice points the way to the finished work of Christ quite like the Tabernacle. Through the Gate, past the brazen alter, into the holy place, and to the Holy of Holies our great High Priest Jesus has secured for us eternal redemption through His own blood. In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp teaches through Hebrews Chapters 8 and 9 to show us the meaning of the Tabernacle and the Gospel.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday August 3rd, 2014.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

The Journey

Dan Burton, Project Coordinator for Samaritans Purse's Galena mission shared with the Galena Bible Church about what it means to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit in the journey of life.
Delivered to Galena Bible Church, Sunday July 27th, 2014.

Hearing and Doing

Galena Bible Church was blessed to be lead in worship and teaching by Jon Casey, missionary serving with SEND North and partnering with GBC.
Delivered to Galena Bible Church, Sunday July 20th, 2014.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Hebrews: to live in the land of peace

1    For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him, 2    and to him Abraham apportioned a tenth part of everything. He is first, by translation of his name, king of righteousness, and then he is also king of Salem, that is, king of peace. Hebrews 7:1-2
We all long for peace. How can we live in a land characterized by peace? Not without knowing its King. In this sermon we explore the mysterious character of Melchizedek who points us to Jesus, King of righteousness, King of peace, and our priest forever. Delivered to the Galena Bible Church by pastor Chris Kopp, Sunday July 13th, 2014.

Monday, July 7, 2014

The Book of Hebrews: Childlike not Childish

We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, (Hebrews 6:19) 
Ever wonder why a one year old baby can run down the hall naked and everyone laughs, but when a 40 year old does that...well its not looked upon well. When does that change happen. There are certain expectations in maturity that follow normal life. It is no different in our Christian growth. You aught to look and act a lot different after having walked with Christ for a longer period of time. In this sermon we look at Hebrews 5:11-6 and what it means to have a childlike faith rather than a childish faith. Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday July 6th, 2014.

Monday, June 30, 2014

The Book of Hebrews: Our High Priest

For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.
(Hebrews 4:15)

What does it mean that Jesus was tempted as we are? It means Jesus was tempted to despair, rage, lust, be prideful, arrogant, deceitful, irreverent, and unholy. Yet throughout all his temptation he was without sin. Therefore he knows our struggles, can empathize with our weakness, and draws us to the throne of God's grace. In this sermon we look at Hebrews 4:14-5:10 and see what Jesus does as our high priest.
Sermon delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday June 29th, 2014.

Monday, June 23, 2014

The Book of Hebrews: Our Rest

Therefore, while the promise of entering his rest still stands, let us fear lest any of you should seem to have failed to reach it. For good news came to us just as to them, but the message they heard did not benefit them, because they were not united by faith with those who listened.
(Heb 4:1-2)

Rest is something that we crave as human beings. And according to Scripture, Jesus is our rest. In this sermon we look at what it means for us to find our rest in Christ alone.
Sermon delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday June 22nd, 2014.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Summer is for building...and a whole lot else.

Unalakleet River
How's your summer going? Ours has been up until this point far beyond excellent. I think that's in part to the fact that anything we got to this summer was going to be an improvement to what we didn't get to do last summer. We said goodbye to our students and school faculty in late May and began preparing for the massive rotating group of awesome volunteers that have been cycling through. I was able to be the camp speaker for a week at the Unalakleet Covenant Bible Camp and met some amazing staff who will be serving there all summer. 
We have also been moving forward on many of the church projects that were undone from last year. We have two teams currently committed to come and serve, but would gladly take additional help. The mission house next to the church will be the primary project, followed by a boiler installation, new windows for the church, a wood shed, and a splattering of other small projects. If you or your church are interested in helping with these, please let me know.
This past week I had the opportunity to help a family at church logging upriver. I took the boys with me and we had a great time camping and helping with the whole process. The family will be milling the lumber to build a garage.
Finally we have been doing our "Summer Bucket List" as a family too. Above pictured we took a family canoe trip and even got a muskrat. The boys and I made several beaver hunting trips and currently have 21 pelts in the freezer. They'll be on the market around October if you're interested.
The Bible Church is experiencing our normal summer slump in regular attendees, but thanks to the volunteers we have a pretty packed house. We are going through the Book of Hebrews and I'd invite you to join alone with the sermons weekly. 
Things you can be praying for:
- safety for volunteers. 
- provision for volunteers to work on church projects. 
- wisdom and continued favor as we seek to plant churches outside Galena. 
- boarding school students who are having a challenging Summer

The Book of Hebrews: The Cure for the Common Heart

Take care, brothers, lest there be in any of you an evil, unbelieving heart, leading you to fall away from the living God. But exhort one another every day, as long as it is called "today," that none of you may be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin.
(Heb 3:12-13)
Christians have historically used all kinds of terms for nonChristians: unbelievers, pagans, heathens, etc. Pastor Lenard Sweet uses a different term...Normal. All of us at one time were at a place of rebellion against God. In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp continues in the series "The Book of Hebrews" and looks at the "Cure for the Common Heart".
Delivered to Galena Bible Church, Sunday June 15th, 2014.

Friday, June 13, 2014

The Book of Hebrews: The Greatest Story

For it was fitting that he, for whom and by whom all things exist, in bringing many sons to glory, should make the founder of their salvation perfect through suffering.
(Hebrews 2:10)
The greatest story ever told is a war story that begins and ends with a wedding. The Bible is God's love story as we war against Him in our sin and yet he lovingly sends His Son to bring our hope and salvation. In every epic story there is: Setting, Conflict, Climax, and Resolution. The Bible is no different in that manner. In this sermon we examine what Hebrews 2:5-18 tells us about the story of God and His redemptive work in Christ on our behalf. 
Delivered to Galena Bible Church, Sunday June 8th, 2014.

Monday, May 26, 2014

The Book of Hebrews: So Great A Salvation

"How shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation?" Hebrews 2:3
When was the last time you were in awe of the work of Christ for your salvation? Seriously, how long has it been. We wonder why we don't see the empowering fruit of the Holy Spirit in our lives, and yet we neglect to remember the gravity of what Christ has completed on our behalf. In this message Pastor Chris looks to the book of Hebrews to remind us of "so great a salvation". Delivered to Galena Bible Church, Sunday May 25th, 2014.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Book of Hebrews: God Speaks

Today we begin a new series on the Book of Hebrews. This book is critical in our New Testament understanding of many of the Old Testament stories and principles. In this sermon,Pastor Chris shares about the opening lines of the book and helps us understand that God speaks. Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday May 18th, 2014.

Monday, May 5, 2014

The Elder Brother

There is such depth to the story we know as "the prodigal son", but is the story really about this son? The elder brother is the type of person that Jesus is addressing in Luke 15. The younger brother could be labeled as the immoralist, living his life as he wants and wasting the gifts of his father. The elder brother is the legalist, who has been doing everything that he's been told to do, yet does not love the father, and in essence never opening the gift of his father.
In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp, shares a warning to "those who are near" to not desire the goat, over fellowship with the Father. Delivered to Galena Bible Church, Sunday May 4th, 2014.

Monday, April 28, 2014

The Invitation of Christ: Zaccheus was a wee little man

Some children's Bible stories become some familiar that they loose the ability to communicate the power that is contained within them. The story of Zaccheus is one of those stories, yet it contains for us two powerful truths: 1. That "today" salvation can come to those who repent and believe upon the Lord Jesus. 2. That it is Jesus who has come to "seek and save that which was lost".
In this sermon, Pastor Chris Kopp delivers a sermon on Christ's invitation to be saved. Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday April 27th, 2014.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Resurrection: The change in Peter

When Jesus said to Peter, "Simmon, Simmon, Satan had demanded to have you to sift you like wheat, but I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail." It must have been an unnerving experience.
The resurrection of Jesus signifies the defining point of our faith. In this Easter Sermon Pastor Chris Kopp shares the change that took place in Peter's life as a result of the resurrection of Jesus.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday April 20th, 2014.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

What's going on in our world

It has been far too long since I have done a general "what are we up to" post. So here it goes:
Back in February we had the pleasure of hosting our second Galena Bible Church Marriage Conference. These great folks from FBC Lake Jackson came and blessed about 20 couples with great teaching, childcare, and a date night.
As you may have already read, I ended up making two trips to Louisiana over the course of three weeks to spend time with my grandmother and then perform her funeral. It was a time of mixed feelings but God was unbelievably faithful to us during that time. 
Upon returning from travels we began our annual firewood harvest. This year proved to be challenging because of a new road that is being out to the dump. Steep sides and a gravel top with no snow made the road nearly impossible to cross with a 1200# load of fire wood. Thankfully someone with a plow pushed snow across one spot in the road and made it passable for a little while anyway. 

Last week we hosted a team from Grace Bible Church, Bozeman MT who worked diligently on the church house and improvements on the main church building. Meanwhile all the SEND missionaries and our family traveled to Anchorage to attend SEND's annual conference. The above picture is how our missionary plane showed up that we would travel to Anchorage in. This is what a trip to HomeDepot looks like for us. 
It was really encouraging to hear how God is at work across the state. 
How can you be praying:
- Pray for the team of ladies from the Gathering Place Church who will be coming to encourage ladies this next week. 
- Pray for teachers and dorm staff as they wrap up their year with students. 
- Pray for Samaritan's Purse as they work through the challenge of planning work in Galena this Summer. 

Monday, April 7, 2014

They Will See Your Good Deeds

When Jesus says things like "This is how they will know that you are my disciples, by your love for one another." and "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your
Father in Heaven." he's saying that our Christian faith will be visible to those who are not Christians. But He also says "Beware of practicing your righteousness before men to be noticed by them, otherwise you have no reward with your Father in Heaven." So how do we know that we are doing "good works" versus "acts of righteousness". Jesus gave us the example of Salt and Light. Salt does stuff, but you don't actually SEE it doing it's stuff. Light illuminates everything, and cannot be hidden unless its covered up.
In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp teaches on this subject. Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday April 6th, 2014.

Monday, March 31, 2014

Neediness (Loved by Jesus but Still Lost)

To the extent that we know our need for Christ is the extent that we will experience His graciousness. The Rich Young Ruler lacked "one thing" and it cost him eternal live. How are the needs around us connected with God's grace? In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp addresses these subjects. Delivered to the Galena Bible Church Sunday March 30th, 2014.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Spiritual Friendship

Who do you have in your life that can see things about you that you can't see? David had Nathan. When everything in David's world looked to be going perfectly, there was a spiritual cancer festering in his soul. Nathan called him out when he said, "You are the man!" In this sermon pastor Chris Kopp shares about the Galena Bible Church's vision to be known as "a group of people who love and care about each other." Delivered to the Galena Bible Church Sunday March 23rd, 2014.

Saturday, March 8, 2014

Saying Goodbye

Galena, Alaska is over 3,000 miles away from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Yet by God's gentle grace I was able to make that distance so that I could spend five precious days with a remarkable woman. She's my mawmaw, my father's mother. When asked what has been the hardest part about making bush Alaska home, it isn't the cold, nor the darkness, nor the cost of living. It has been the heartache of being so far away from family when health fails. Since living in Galena, Shell and my's families have had some tremendous health issues. And we've been 3000 miles away. When my grandfather died I was boarding a plane in Anchorage to come see him. 
I did not want to experience that with my mawmaw. As I fly back to Galena I leave her behind. Walking out of her hospice room was one of the most painful things I have ever experienced. The next time I see her it will just be a shell. Not the glory of the once vibrant tenatious Christ loving woman she has been. And this breaks my soul. Yet there is not grief without hope. She and I openly wept as we said good bye but as she spoke a blessing over me I was reminded again that In Christ death is swallowed up in victory. Her name is Lois and I am a living Timothy. 
2Timothy 1:4-7 encourages me today as I read "As I remember your tears, I long to see you, that I may be filled with joy. I am reminded of your sincere faith, a faith that dwelt first in your grandmother Lois and your mother Eunice and now, I am sure, dwells in you as well. For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control."
No fear of death lays upon the heart of a disciple of Jesus. Grief, sorrow, mourning, pain, and loss may be acutely present, but not fear. As she lives with a beautiful smile and prays for every nurse, doctor, and visitor, she fans into flame the  gift given to her. And I pray her example would give to you what it gives to me. Unshakable hope in the faithfulness of Christ. 
I leave with you this prayer posted by my mawmaw in her bedroom that she would read and ask you to pray for her and us in her final days. 

Monday, February 24, 2014

Momentary Light Affliction

What does suffering have to do with us, the Gospel, and those around us? According to the apostle Paul, a whole lot. He says in 2 Corinthians 4:17 "For our momentary, light affliction is preparing for us and eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison. In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp teaches how this passage can be applied in our current circumstances.
Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday February 23rd 2014.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Taking the Opportunity

When Mary poured expensive perfume on Jesus' feet and wiped them with her hair, she was taking the opportunity given to her to show how much Jesus is worth. How do we take the opportunities given to us to show the worth of Jesus. In this sermon Pastor Chad Alexander from Lake Jackson TX shares with the Galena Bible Church about what opportunities he sees for declaring Jesus' worth to this community. Delivered to the Galena Bible Church Sunday December 16th, 2014.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Be a Hero

What is a spiritual hero? Someone who lives out the reality of their lives, submits their rights for the betterment of others, and saves lives. Take a look at Paul's letter to Philemon with us as we look at what it means to be a spiritual hero. This sermon was delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday February 9th, 2014.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Waiting and Working

What do you put your faith in? Everyone has faith. It's just a matter of "in what." In this sermon we seek to  understand saving faith by looking at Galatians 5:4-6 and imagining four types of faith that people could have had during the Yukon flood. This sermon was delivered to Galena Bible Church, Sunday February 2nd, 2014.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Follow Me

In case you're wondering what it looks like to shovel snow at twenty below.
Fresh white snow creates a beautiful playland for riding around on a sno-go (Snowmachine for the Alaskans, Snowmobile for everyone else). But when the snow is freshly falling and you are going for a ride there is zero definition in the landscape. You can't tell where the edge of the trail is, if the trail goes up/straight/or down. I went Ptarmigan hunting a couple weeks ago and was following behind another sno-go that, as we were clipping along, suddenly disappeared. They had discovered the the trail suddenly dipped and off they shot, and fell, probably about 10 feet. Thank goodness for suspension systems. It helps to be following someone.

When you follow someone, you are putting a significant amount of faith in them. Do they know where they are going? How to get there? What the dangers are? Do they remember that you are following them so they don't lose you? It takes tons of faith to follow someone.

And it is in this imagery that Jesus speaks of His disciples: "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me." (John 10:27) It sounds so simple, yet Jesus was saying this to people who would not follow him. The Pharisees saw the miracles that Jesus did, yet could not bring themselves to believe what He said about himself. So there are three things Jesus says which connect us to Him: (1) His divine voice. (2) His divine knowledge (3) Our divine faith.

  • His divine voice: When Jesus says "They hear my voice" he doesn't mean that they can simply audibly hear him. The Pharisees can hear Him, yet they do not believe Him. When Jesus says that His sheep "hear his voice" he means that there is understanding and obedience in those that are His. In the same way a parent giving instruction to their child says "Listen carefully to me as I'm about to speak to you." The expectation is understanding and obedience. Another way to say this is that to hear the voice of Jesus means we believe and repent. Repentance is not simply stopping a bad action, but turning to a Godly action. Apart from true belief we don't know what we are to be turning from or turning to. How do we hear His voice today? Jesus has appointed us to be his witnesses. (Acts 1:8) Our responsibility is to speak as those who have read His Word, heard His voice, and obeyed His commands. We preach, evangelize, teach, share, worship, and serve only out of the abundance of hearing His voice. The very voice of Jesus has been entrusted to those who are redeemed by Him, so that out of experience in Him we can say as the blind man did, "I was...and because of Him I am now..." My Sheep hear My voice.
  • His divine knowledge: What more comforting thing could there be in all the universe than to hear your creator say, "I know you". Jesus says "They are My sheep". A divine "Mine" is placed over us. But it's not an obscure, aloof, unattached "mine". Rather it is Him saying "I know them." He knows who we were made to become, what our strengths are, where we are weak, what our temperament is and what we're going to choose to eat for lunch. In everything about us, He can say, "I know them." There is a marketing push today to "empower" people. Recently someone showed me this in the big DIY box stores marketing. One says "You can do it! We can help." and another says "Let's build something together." Both say you are empowered in yourself to accomplish what you set out to do. The greatest empowerment message we can hear today is that Jesus says "I know him(her), he's(she's) mine." It's were we can find our identity, our validity, and our purpose. We were made to be truly known and Jesus says of those who hear his voice "I know them."
  • Our divine faith: The final statement is that those who hear His voice and are known by Him, follow Him. "Follow me" is how Jesus says we become like Him. 20 times the Gospels record this phrase. It's Jesus saying: go where I go, do what I do, say what I say, behave like I behave, love like I love, give like I give, think like I think, die as I die, live as I live. When Jesus said "follow Me" it was enough for men to drop their livelihoods and find a new life in Him. This is why in John 10:27b-28a Jesus' next statement is "they follow me, and I give eternal life to them." Eternal life is not found apart from following Christ. Herein is genuine faith, supernatural, divinely authored faith. Without His voice, His knowledge, and his command we are lost. Grace alone saves us. And grace alone keeps us. Look what His whole statement is:
My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand. My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand. I and the Father are one. John 10:27-30 
  • Before we first heard the voice of Jesus, God gave us to Him. We were loved by God before any action on our part. And we were redeemed by Jesus before any belief, repentance, or obedience of our own. Now in Him, Jesus says that NO ONE can snatch us from His hand. Covering this Jesus says that NO ONE can snatch us from God's hand. So we are in God in Christ double secure. Grace that saves and grace that keeps. No works, no boasting just Jesus. So how then do we know we are saved? 
Jesus says "follow Me."
Do you?
Listen to the full sermon HERE

Monday, January 13, 2014

Joseph: God's will and our change

The story of Joseph in Genesis is a familiar one for many of us. God had a plan and purpose for Joseph that he himself could not have imagined. Without change, sometimes very painful change, we can never see or be what God wills us to be. In this sermon Pastor Chris Kopp explores the narrative of Joseph to see how we can follow God's will for our change. Delivered to the Galena Bible Church, Sunday January 12nd, 2014.

Monday, January 6, 2014

Joy for the sake of the Gospel

Joy for the sake of the Gospel (Sermon)
What word or phrase have you heard that elicited Joy? 
"Looks like you'll get to keep your eye." - Spoken by Dr Arnold concerning my orbital blowout fracture of the left eye when I was 11.
"It's not cancer." - diagnosis from a doctor concerning my dad in my early teens.
"Yes!" and a subsequent "I do." - From my now wife of almost 13 years.
"Your baby(boy/boy/girl) looks really healthy." - Medical staff in natal unit of Women's and Children's Hospital.
"I Love you. I'm proud of you." - Said by my grandfather.
"He died peacefully in his sleep." - Said of him the following morning.

All of these things brought a great deal of joy in the moment. There was pain involved in some of the statements, but always a sense of hope. There is always a great deal of hope in joy. Hope that there is something better coming. Hope of restoration, second chances, and the unexpected. Joy and hope can never be separated.
What about this statement? Does it elicit joy? Read it carefully:
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
Did you feel that? Did you feel anything? Joy, indifference, familiarity, regret, fear...what do you feel when you read those words? These are monumental words that speak to deepest hope. Surely we feel something. But unfortunately too many will read this phrase and be unmoved. Why? Could it be that the weight of the word "Condemned" has been lost in our Gospel.

Condemned means you're days away from 6000 volts coursing through your dying chest as you're strapped to an electric chair. Condemned means the jury has heard the multitude of witnesses and has handed down a guilty verdict. Condemned means endless suffering in hopelessness. Condemned means you're dead.

Somehow the Gospel that is heard by so many does not contain the force that makes it "good news". When we, by God's grace, can realize that we are dead, separated, and condemned for our sin, only then can we see the good news. 
There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
No longer condemned. The Governor called. You are pardoned. They take your prison clothes and dress you in Armani. Record expunged, sentence remunerated, charges dropped...forgiven. But how?
No Christ Jesus.
Sometimes we can become so comfortable "in" our salvation that we forget the joy "of" our salvation. Remember: Joy and hope can never be separated. Those things that bring me joy in this world would be for nothing were it not for the Gospel.What does it profit a man if he gains the whole world (should be some joy somewhere in there right?) yet forfeits his soul? Because of Christ I have hope. Hope that my children could grow to know and cherish Christ. Hope that my parents would continue to walk faithfully with the Lord as they have loved so long. Hope that my marriage would honor God and model Christ's care for the church to all that know us. Hope that I can walk in the love of Christ like my grandfather did. And hope that I will one day see him again. All of this is because of the Gospel! Joy for the Gospel's sake.

Apart from Christ you stand condemned already. In Christ you are forgiven and free to feel His joy.

There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.
... How do you feel about that?
Joy for the sake of the Gospel (Sermon)