This week we continue with our Nehemiah sermon series, and read that when inspecting the walls of Jerusalem Nehemiah ‘moved on towards the Fountain Gate’ (2:14). But did you know that the name of Casey’s Fountain Gate housing estate and shopping centre was possibly inspired by this ancient gate?
As our resident BAC historian Neil Lucas notes:
“From the 8th century BC a spring adjacent to the City of Jerusalem provided a water supply to the city through a conduit into a water storage facility known as the Pool of Siloam. The walls surrounding Jerusalem contained a number of gateways. The gate close to the Pool of Siloam was known as The Fountain Gate in recognition of the water flowing into the pool from the conduit.
Located to the east of Tinks Road, the Fountain Gate residential estate was developed and named during the 1960’s by developer and Jewish immigrant Isador Magid. The City of Jerusalem was dear to Magid’s heart and over his lifetime he donated significant funds to the University of Jerusalem to provide tertiary education to students of all faiths who, without his generosity, could not afford a tertiary education.
At the Tinks Road entrance to the estate from the Princes Highway, Magid constructed a large fountain designed by Robin Boyd and a large “Hollywood” style sign – ‘Fountain Gate’. At the opening of the estate the fountain was ceremonially turned on but much to the dismay of those in attendance, a torrent of water was blown over the adjacent Princes Highway causing some consternation to motorists. The fountain did not operate again! Later Magid purchased adjoining land to the east from farmer John Lloyd and obtained permission to develop the regional shopping centre, now known as Westfield Fountain Gate”
“O For a Heart to Praise My God”
by Charles Wesley
O for a heart to praise my God,
a heart from sin set free,
a heart that always feels thy blood
so freely shed for me.
A heart resigned, submissive, meek,
my great Redeemer’s throne,
where only Christ is heard to speak,
where Jesus reigns alone.
A humble, lowly, contrite heart,
believing, true, and clean,
which neither life nor death can part
from Christ who dwells within.
A heart in every thought renewed
and full of love divine,
perfect and right and pure and good,
a copy, Lord, of thine.
Thy nature, gracious Lord, impart;
come quickly from above;
write thy new name upon my heart,
thy new, best name of Love.
Over summer we have been blessed with sermons on the theme of rest. It could not have come at a better time for us here at BAC. I pray that your summer has indeed been restful.
Over the next few months we will be embedded in the book of Nehemiah, a period in Israel’s history of seeking for restoration in a time of tragedy. I’m reminded from Nehemiah 4 that as the builders were rebuilding they did so with building materials in one hand, but a sword in the other. This speaks volumes of how we as a church ought to be longing for God’s promises to be fulfilled, but will need to do so with our spiritual sword in hand.
The sword of the Spirit, which Ephesians 6 tells us is the word of God, is our weapon. Yes, we are seeking rest and restoration, but we do so by meditating on God’s Word, being ready to give an answer for the hope we have. And like Nehemiah, we ought to pray for God’s promises to come to fruition.
So friends, would you pray passionately for –
- Our four church congregations, that we grow strong together in the grace of the Lord Jesus.
- Our vicar Wayne, that as he returns he too will be continually restored to full health daily.
- Our friends, family and work colleagues, that we will be prayerful and courageous to unashamedly speak the truth of the Lord Jesus Christ with them in love and faith.
For the kingdom,
Welcome to Berwick Anglican Church as we celebrate the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ! Christmas is one of the key moments in history, when God took on flesh and came to the world he created, and began his work to rescue humanity from our sin and death and evil.
Thank you for joining us today as together we remember the Christmas story, sing carols, learn from God’s Word, and celebrate Jesus’ love for us.
If you would like to know more about Jesus and his gift of eternal life, you would be most welcome to join us at our regular Berwick Anglican Church services; 8:30am, 10:15am or 5pm on Sundays, and 10am on Thursdays.
Rev. Ben Soderlund
The traditional Anglican prayer for the lead up to Christmas:
ALMIGHTY God, give us grace that we may cast away the works of darkness and put on the armour of light, now in the time of this mortal life in which your Son Jesus Christ came among us in great humility; that on the last day, when he shall come again in his glorious Majesty to judge the living and the dead, we may rise to the life immortal; through him who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and ever. Amen.