Speaking where the bible speaks, and silent where the bible is silent.

Archive for October, 2012

WHAT IF Christ Came Back Today?

Now I am not a big on “What If” scenarios, but then again, what if the scenarios were actually plausible? How often do we as logical and responsible human beings plan our life on “What If” scenarios to govern our life. You know the kind: What if someone breaks into your house, and your contingency plans. Like What If a monster storm destroys my house, and car, and I have no money saved to cover the damages. It’s called planning for the unexpected. If we used this same reasoning with our spiritual life, I wonder just how differently most would be living their life today. For instance:

What If Christ Came While Your Were Living In Sin (Adultery, Fornication, or Homosexuality)?

The ever growing population of those living in sin is mind boggling. Jesus spoke of an adulterous generation. Today we live in a degenerate generation. We have countless shacking up, living in adultery, or in gay relationships, and they call it the new normal. Normal for whom I ask, the Devil and his angels? If Christ came and saw those in such conditions, what will he do with them? Do I even need to ask? Such sins were called an abomination before God, and those who commit such acts are not worthy of the kingdom of God. Gal 5:19-21 Who wants to face our Lord, and attempt to justify sins such as these?

What If Christ Came While You Were Having An Abortion?

Often politicized and made into a campaign every election year, abortion is an act rarely spoken of as a problem in America. Actually, most nations don’t even mention it as we Americans.  Jews state that life begins at birth, while most Protestants and Catholics believe life begins at conception. The word abortion isn’t mentioned in the bible, but the act of abortion is mentioned briefly in the old testament.

“If men fight, and hurt a woman with child, so that she gives birth prematurely, yet no harm follows, he shall surely be punished accordingly as the woman’s husband imposes on him; and he shall pay as the judges determine. But if any harm follows, then you shall give life for life…” Ex 21:22-24

Politics aside, what God fearing woman would want to be facing the Lord our God while having the child inside of her intentionally killed? No murder shall enter into the Kingdom of God. Rev 21:8 Any hands in the air on this one?

What If Christ Came While We Were Drunk or Stoned?

We live in a generation where liquor can be bought at the local super market, and buy illegal drugs from dealers on the streets; Both destroy lives and causes one to come to poverty. Prov 23:21 Alcoholic drink is called the wine of violence. Prov 4:17 Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging. Proverbs 20:1 Alcohol causes the drinker to come to poverty and laziness and will clothe one in rags. Proverbs 23:33 Alcohol makes the drinker unstable Proverbs 23:34 Alcohol perverts good judgment. Prov 31:4,5   Paul said, “Be not drunk with wine wherein is excess, but be filled with the Spirit.” Eph 5:18 As with alcohol, when one is stoned with illegal drugs, one is even more susceptible to wickedness. Such things destroys lives and often kills both themselves and the unfortunate who come in contact with them. Most drunks can’t explain themselves out of a traffic ticket. Imagine staggering, with blurry eyes, and a foggy mind, and explain your way out of hell and damnation before our Lord.

What If Christ Came And I Wasn’t Saved?

It is unforgivable with God for anyone to not obey the gospel of Christ. Anyone, without exception, who doesn’t obey the gospel of our Lord shall be punished with hell and damnation. Mk 16:16f; 2 Thess 1:7-9 Outside the body of Christ every sin we have ever committed is still upon us. The only ones who will be saved, and rewarded eternal life are those who believe Jesus is the Christ and confess it before men, and repent and be baptized for the remission of their sins. Rom 10:9,10f; Acts 2:38 No matter what good deeds we may do on this planet, if we fail to obey the gospel, we are doomed. This is the worst condition in which one wants to meet the Lord our God.

Conclusion: Instead of asking, “What If Christ Came to Us”, imagine, “What If We Died and Went to Him? We all will die one day, and when we do, we must be prepared to meet our God. Heb 9:27 The problem is, we don’t know when. It could happen at any moment, and for any reason. So whether Christ comes today or we die today, we will face our judgment one way or another. 2 Cor 5:10 As Paul went on to say, “Knowing therefore the terror of God, we persuade men.” 2 Cor 5:11 That’s not WHAT IF, that’s WHAT IS.

Reasons Christians Live

What makes you want to live: Is it having wealth, fame, or the enjoyment of life? Perhaps you live for your spouse, your children, or grandchildren? Christians have a different agenda than this world. Let’s examine what makes Christians want to live in this present world.

To Live For Christ

Christians are the only group of people who have the least reasons to want to live on this earth. After all, their reward isn’t in this world, but rather in the world to come. Christians are the ones who are being persecuted, and going through trials, and tribulations. They’re the ones who hasten the coming of the Lord. 2 Pet 3:10-12

Yet, Christians have reasons to live that over rule all others, and that is to live for Christ, for fellow brethren, and for those who have not yet obeyed the gospel. Paul said, “For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. But if I live on in the flesh, this will mean fruit from my labor; yet what I shall choose I can’t tell. For I am hard-pressed between the two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better. Nevertheless to remain in the flesh is more needful for you.”  Philip 1:21-25

Live To Learn God’s Word

Christians live to learn of God’s Word not because they are in need of more learning.2 Tim 2:15 No, they are highly educated in the scriptures, far above all others. 1 Jn 2:21 They love God’s Word, and feast off it daily. Acts17:11 Christians are already dead because they were buried with Christ by baptism. Rom 6:3,4 They don’t live by bread alone, but by every word which proceeds from God. Mt 4:4 Jesus said to his disciples, “I am that bread of life.” Jn 6:48 Peter said that Christ has the words of eternal life. Jn 6:69 This is that word whereby the gospel is preached unto us. 1 Pet 1:25 Therefore it is conclusive that the bread of life Christians live by is the gospel of Christ.

Live To Teach God’s Word

Christians must be prepared to teach and preach God’s Word. They must be able to convert the lost. Heb 5:12-14 If Christians don’t teach God’s Word, who will? If Christians aren’t seeking and saving the lost, no one will. The devil, the thief, comes not but for to steal, to kill and destroy. Jn 10:10 If souls are to be spared from hell, it takes well seasoned Christians to do it. Jam 5:19,20 They must be prepared to preach in and out of season, reproving, rebuking, and encouraging. 2 Tim 4:2-5

Live To Defend The Faith

Christians must be prepared to contend and defend the faith against false, devilish, and man made doctrine. Jude 3f; Philip 1:15-18 They must be prepared to give an answer to all who ask the reasons for hope of salvation. 1 Pet 3:15 Christians know that grievous wolves will enter in, and devour the flock if strong elders are not there to defend the church. Acts 20:28,29 Therefore Christians live to protect the Word of God against those who would lie against it and pervert it.

Live To Defend Their Own Soul

Christians know they must have God’s armor to protect themselves against the trickery of the Devil. Eph 6:11-17 Jesus told Peter, “Simon, Simon! Indeed, Satan has asked for you, that he may sift you as wheat. But I have prayed for you, that your faith should not fail; and when you have returned to Me, strengthen your brethren.” Luke 22:31-32 Peter said, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walks about, seeking whom he may devour:” 1 Peter 5:8 Christians must use truth, faith, and the knowledge of God to defend themselves against wickedness. Though they live for others, they must also protect themselves against the perversion of this world even as Lot protected himself against the wickedness of Sodom and Gomorrah

Live To Help Others

Christians live to help others who are less fortunate. Christians are their brother’s keeper. They are the ones who love, and do good to their enemies. Mt 5:39-47 They love and do good to their neighbor (which is all mankind). Mk 12:31 They love and do good especially to fellow brethren. Jn 13:34 When a Christian has the opportunity, they do good unto everyone. Gal 6:10

Conclusion: Christians have many reasons to live, but they have one greater reason to die, and that is to obtain eternal life. Tit 1:2 If they overcome the temptations and trials of this world they have a crown of life awaiting them. Jam 1:12 Yet, for the sake of fellow Christians, for the sake of sinners, and for the sake of the church itself, they are prepared to serve and to delay their salvation. Blessed are the Saints which die in the Lord, and blessed are the Saints which live who carry on the work of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Rev 14:13

God At Work

Mankind wants to believe that they control this planet. They want to believe that we either caused global warming, or that we can change it by our actions. Eccl 3:11 Nahum recorded the power of God, and how he works when he said, “The Lord is slow to anger and great in power, and will not at all acquit the wicked. The Lord has His way in the whirlwind and in the storm, and the clouds are the dust of His feet.” Nah 1:3 The biggest question we need to ask ourselves today, is God at work, or is what’s happening around us just coincidence.

The Flood

God warned Noah to build an ark in preparation for an impending flood. It took Noah 120 years to prepare the ark according to God’s specification. Up to that moment in time, rain had never fallen upon the earth. It was by faith that Noah obeyed God. It was his obedience that saved him and his household. Every animal and person lost their life that day to the flood except those who were on the ark. Mankind believes that an ice age killed everyone by pure coincidence. Believe it or not, God was at work.

The Red Sea

God gave Moses a commandment to lead the children or Israel out of Egypt. Moses gave Pharaoh 10 chances to change his mind and let God’s people go, but his heart was hardened. Moses after rendering 10 plagues upon Egypt lead Israel through the Red Sea. Mankind says that it was a coincidence which parted the waters that day. Believe it or not, God was at work.

The Messiah

Jesus was born in Bethlehem Ephrata as was prophesied by the prophets. Jesus warned mankind to believe in him, and to be baptized or be eternally condemned. Mk 16:16 His ministry began at the age of 30 and lasted only 3 years before Israel delivered him into the enemies hands to be crucified. He died and was buried and arose again the third day as we prophesied. 1 Cor 15:1-4 After 50 days he was taken into heaven to be with God, promising to come again to judge his people. Mankind says Jesus was nothing more than a prophet, and that his resurrection from the dead was no more than folklore. Believe it or not, God was at work.

Conclusion: We are often told that the world is set in perpetual motion, and that God has nothing to do with the affairs of mankind anymore. God still warns mankind in various ways in order to give them a chance to change. He did this with Noah, he did this with Moses, and he did this with Christ. God is at work today with his servants. As with the apostles, Christians are sent out to preach the gospel of Christ, and to warn of impending doom for those who fail to take heed. 2 Thess 1:7-9 The Lord God still sets governments over mankind, and believe it or not, still has a vote that influences the masses. Frankenstorm Sandy is the most recent example of that.

The Lord is coming sooner than most can imagine to gather his Saints, and to judge the earth. A day that all present Saints are praying for, and all past Saints are beckoning. 2 Pet 3:10-12f; Rev 6:10 Are you prepared to meet the Lord your God? Amos 4:12 Is your house in order? As Jesus said to his disciples, “What I say unto you I say unto all, WATCH.” Mk 13:37 For the Lord our God is at WORK!

Vote For Jesus Christ

There is an election going on for every individual ever born. Every sinner and every Christian who has been baptized into the body of Christ is presently engaged in a battle for their soul. Though all Christians belong to Christ, the Devil is running against the Lord for your soul to change your vote. It’s a winner take all election. Let’s examine what the two candidates are offering for your soul.

Candidate Devil

The Devil is a very articulate candidate. At his disposal, he will lie, cheat, or steal just to win your vote. He will offer you beautiful women and handsome men. He will offer you fame and fortune untold. He will offer you the kind of power that will blow your mind. He will offer you good health, long life, and offspring two and three generations. Job 21:7-9 If that all sounds like something you would desire, all you need to do is deny Christ and his gospel. If you can’t do that, then just worship God by just believing. If that still isn’t something you can do, then the Devil has one more option made just for the hard to convince hypocrite: Obey the gospel, but instead of worshiping God His way, do it your own way. Jn 14:6ff; Mt 15:7-9; Jer 44:16,17

The Devil, the father of all liars is offering you all this for your eternal soul. Jn 8:44 Now the Devil won’t tell you, but if you take him up on his offer, and most will, the price you will pay is your soul in hell along with the him, and his angels. Rev 20:10-15f; 2 Thess 1:7-9

Candidate Jesus

Jesus is not a very good candidate. He is not the change candidate, for he neither changes his mind, nor his doctrine, but remains the same always. Heb 13:8; 2 Jn 9 What he offers one, he offers all. Col 3:25 He is the care candidate, for we can rest our cares upon him. 1 Pet 5:7 He is not articulate, and he is not good to look upon. Isa 56 He is a poor man who proclaims promises and persecutions, and not riches and fame. He promises eternal life if you choose him, but you will have to live a very lowly and hard life.

Vote for Jesus Christ to be your Savior by your obedience to the gospel of Christ.You will have to show your allegiance to him by believing in him, and confessing this before men. Rom 10:9,10You will have to humble your selves by turning from your sins and being buried with Christ by baptism.  Lk 13:3f; Rom 6:3,4 Then begins the hard part, remaining faithful until death. Rev 2:10 This will include worshiping God in Spirit and in truth. Jn 4:22-24 This will include learning of God’s Word, and preaching and teaching it to all who will give ear. 2 Tim 2:2-5 This will include suffering for the cause of Christ by the same measure that all Christians must suffer. 1 Pet 5:9,10

The Lord Jesus Christ is the Truth, and can tell no lie. Heb 6:18,19 His promise to each of us is eternal life if we do all that he has commanded of us. Tit 1:2f; Mk 16:16

Who Will You Vote For?

Choices have consequences, and truth does matter. Jn 8:32  He is not tossed to and from by every wind of doctrine. Eph 4:14 We know what Christ stands for because He does not flip flop in His Doctrine, but has a firm foundation both sure and steadfast. Isa 28:16ff; Heb 6:19; 2 Tim 2:19  He does not stand for wickedness, but is a righteous judge. Ps 33:5ff; Deut 32:4; Jn 7:24 Those who choose the truth will be saved, and those who reject it will be judged according to the Word of Christ, and His apostles. Jn 12:48f; Rom 2:16  His kingdom is not of the world, but of the world to come. Jn 18:36 Most will choose the riches of this world, heaven on earth, and have to pay the consequences of their choice. Josh 24:15  Each of us have one vote, and we can give it to just one candidate. If this election were numerically stated, it would be 99.9% for the Devil and 0.1% for Jesus.  Now as bad as that may appear, Jesus foretold us right from the start that only few would elect him as their Lord and Savior. Mt 7:13,14f; Jer 8:3

If you choose the Devil, your reward is right here on earth. Enjoy it fully, and know this life will be your consolation. Lk 6:24 Just know that after you die, you will have hell to pay. Mk 16:16f; Gal 6:8

Life is not about who Jesus would vote for, but rather who will vote for him. If you choose the Lord, vote early, and endure patiently, and know your election is sure. 2 Pet 1:10 Your reward will be eternal life in heaven with God, and Christ and the Holy Spirit. Jam 1:12 To this end you will have the last laugh for you shall rejoice with God. Lk 1:47ff; Philip 4:4; Hab 3:18; Ps 32:10,11

The choice is yours. Jer 21:8

My Father’s Business

How many sons and daughter’s relish the idea of growing up, and going into their father’s business. I recall as a 13 year old boy seeing my dad preaching God’s Word, and telling him that one day I wanted to be just like him. If it’s not an uncommon thing for humans to want to be like their parents, then it’s not uncommon for Christians to want to be like their heavenly Father.

Jesus, as a young boy, disappeared from his earthly parents for 3 days, and went into the  temple in Jerusalem, and began hearing and asking question of the elders. When they found him, they asked him why he had made them to worry. Jesus said, “”Why did you seek Me? Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?” Luke 2:49

In just one sentence as a young lad, (12 years old), Jesus had defined in part what God’s business was all about. Jesus was teaching the Word of God. When Jesus had entered his ministry at the age of 30, he sent his disciples to the lost house of Israel to preach to them that the kingdom of heaven was near. Mt 10:6,7 They went into temple and every house and ceased not to preach Jesus Christ. Acts 5:42

When Jesus arose from the dead he commissioned his apostles to go into all the world to preach and teach the gospel of Christ, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Mt 28:19,20f; Mk 16:15,16

When the apostle Paul was at the end of his ministry he commissioned all faithful men to preach the same Word, and the same gospel which he had preached. 2 Tim 2:2f; Gal 1:8,9 He commanded a young Timothy to preach the Word in and out of season, reproving, rebuking and encouraging. 2 Tim 4:2-5

Once we become members of the body of Christ it is the duty of every Christian to learn of God’s Word, and for all faithful men to preach and teach the gospel of Christ. 2 Tim 2:15f; 2 Tim 2:2 Though there be other things which constitute the work of the church and of every member, none is greater than this. May each and every Christian be about our Father’s Business.

One Chance

Most think that life affords them lots of time on this planet, but they’re wrong. Even if one lives to be 120 years old, the time they spend here on earth will dissipate quicker than they think. The average person is dead before they reach 80. Their first 25 years are spent learning who they are, and what they want to become. The last 15 years of their life are spent facing their mortality over health issues that are inevitable as one grows older. One third of their time is spent sleeping. Those who sleep less than this usually die earlier than those who get their full quota of sleep. One third of their prime years will be spent working, and making a living. All totaled, that only leaves one with 6 quality years. What makes this scenario even worse is that an accident could even wipe away those years at any given time.

Actually, we only have one chance to get right with God. It could come early, or it could come late, or somewhere in between. However, when it comes, and it will come, don’t procrastinate. Don’t be like Felix who asked for a more convenient day. Acts 24:25 I am not saying you won’t have another opportunity, but I am saying you are not guaranteed to have another opportunity. Once a preacher or teacher presents the gospel of Christ to you, they are free from your blood. Acts 20:27

Jesus told his disciples that when a house or city reject the gospel, for them to shake off the dust of their feet. It will be more tolerable on the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah than for one who rejects God’s Word. Mt 10:14,15

Not one conversion in the new testament was a repeat visit. They all heard the Gospel, and they obeyed it. The apostle Paul gave us the reason why when he said, “…Because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved.  And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.” 2 Thess 2:10-12

The Gospel is a precious thing. This unspeakable gift from God the Father who sent down his only begotten son to die on the cross is not to be taken lightly. 2 Cor 9:15; Jn 3:16 Anyone who rejects it has the wrath of God to face. The Hebrew writer said, “Of how much worse punishment, do you suppose, will he be thought worthy who has trampled the Son of God underfoot, counted the blood of the covenant by which he was sanctified a common thing, and insulted the Spirit of grace?” Heb 10:29

We have but this one life, and once chance to get right with God. Don’t waste your precious time dealing with the cares and affairs of this world. 2 Tim 2:4 Get right and stay right with God by your obedience to the gospel of Christ. 1 Cor 15:1-4 This is your one chance, perhaps your last chance, so don’t waste it. Obey the gospel today. 2 Cor 6:2

1. Hear………….Rom 10:17
2. Believe………Jn 8:24
3. Confess……. Rom 10:9,10
4. Repent………Acts 17:30
5. Baptism……..Acts 22:16
6. Faithfulness..Rev 2:10

The Kind of Love God Demands – Heart & Mind

The heart and the mind are two different parts of our brain. The heart is the thoughts or feelings of our brain. The heart was defined by Peter as a precious thing in God’s sight. He said, “Let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.” 1 Peter 3:4 The mind is the deep thoughts of the brain which can be exercised. “A thinking through, or over, a meditation, reflecting,” signifies “the faculty of knowing, understanding, or moral reflection. As Paul said, “Solid food belongs to those who are of full age, that is, those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.” Heb 5:14 God demands both our heart and our minds in a variety of ways. Let’s examine just how.

How We Love God

God wants us to love him with all of our heart, and our mind. Mk 12:30 God not only wants us to love him with our gentle, quiet spirit, the heart, but also to learn of Him with our understanding, and deep reflecting mind. God wants us to believe in him by the very evidence of what is before us. The psalmist David wrote, “The heavens declare the glory of God; And the firmament shows His handiwork.” Ps 19:1 At the same time God wants us to love him out of much study of the mind. We should consider God by the scriptures in a deeper study, realizing God keeps his promises, and doesn’t lie.

God loved us first, and defined what real love is by giving to us his only begotten Son to die for our sins. 1 Jn 4:10,19 Jesus proved his love by giving his life as a lamb, without spot and without blemish. 1 Pet 1:19 Jesus  said, “Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends. You are My friends if you do whatever I command you.” John 15:13-14

How We Believe In Christ

In order to be saved, God wants us to believe Jesus is the Christ with our heart, and not with our mind. Believing Jesus is the Christ doesn’t take a great study. Once we hear the gospel of Christ, we either believe it, or we don’t. The gospel is just that simple. 1 Cor 15:1-4

The hidden part of mankind has an inner ability to determine what is right and what is wrong. Take note of how one loves a man or a woman. If a man loves a woman, he doesn’t have to think about it very long, he just knows. This is the heart of a person. The mind can make a study of whether a person is compatible or right for them, but the heart knows innately what the mind has to ponder.

Paul said, “If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” Rom 10:9 There will come a time after one is baptized into the body of Christ that our belief is proven by the mind. We add to our faith the knowledge of God. 2 Pet 1:5 This we shall do by studying to show ourselves approved unto God…rightly dividing the Word of truth. 2 Tim 2:15 By reading, meditating, and learning of God’s Word, our minds can determine that God is real, God is believable, and God is trustworthy, and able to deliver what he promises. 2 Tim 1:12

What Kind of Love God Accepts

God rejects mere words to love Him. Ezekiel wrote, “..With their mouth they show much love, but their hearts pursue their own gain.”Ezek 33:31 Isaiah said, “These people draw near to Me with their mouth, and honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me.” Matt 15:8 If we love God, we will keep his commandments. Jn 14:15 If we love God, we will teach his Word. Jn 12:16,17 If God is our Father, we will love Christ. Jn 8:42 If we love not Christ, we shall be accursed. 1 Cor 16:22

Conclusion: God wants us to love and believe in him both with our hearts and our minds. Until we give both to God, we can’t be pleasing and acceptable to Him. If you haven’t obeyed the gospel, do it today by giving God your heart, and obeying that form of doctrine which was once delivered unto the saints. Jude 3 If you have obeyed the gospel of Christ, give God your mind by reading, studying, and learning of His Word. 1 Tim 4:13; 2 Tim 2:15; Mt 11:29 Increase and grow in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ by your daily devotion to God’s Word. Col 1:9,10; 2 Pet 3:18 Herein is the love of man revealed unto God, that we keep his commandments. 1 Jn 5:3

I leave you with these words: “Your word is very pure; Therefore Your servant loves it.”Ps 119:140 Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor stands in the path of sinners, nor sits in the seat of the scornful;  But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and in His law he meditates day and night.” Ps 1:1-2  “Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near.” Rev 1:3”

Riches, Racism, and Political Division

When I see TV evangelists tell their audience to send them money so that God will make them rich, it makes me smile. I don’t smile because it’s funny, but because it takes  ignorance of the scripture to lead many to do believe such false doctrine. Mk 12:24 It was said in the height of the great depression that the head of the Presbyterian Church lived lavishly in a mansion while it’s members were dying for the lack of food, shelter, and medical treatment.

Jeremiah the prophet said, “The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests rule by their own power; and My people love to have it so. but what will you do in the end? Jer 5:31 How many churches are ruled by rich men and women today? The answer just might surprise you. James wrote, “Do not rich men oppress you, and draw you before the judgment seats? Do not they blaspheme that worthy name by the which ye are called?” James 2:6,7 And yet we wonder why the truth is not being preached to us, and why so many churches are looking more and more like denominations, and less like the church which Christ built, and purchased with his own blood.  Mt 16:18; Acts 20:28

I don’t worry for this nation, for all nations are ruled by God, for all power comes from God. Ps 62:11 As Jesus said to Pilate, “You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given you from above.” John 19:11  What I do worry about more than this nation is the condition of the Lord’s church. If Christ came back today, would there be faith on the earth? Lk 18:8

Church Division

The churches of Christ are compromised of about 5 million members world wide, and about 1.6 million in the United States. The churches are divided into two major factions (Liberal and Conservative). They are basically separated over the issue of institutionalism. There are also minor issues which divide the churches as well.  (One Cup, Wearing of Veils, etc)

Most churches of Christ are segregated racially where racism still raises its ugly head in quiet quarters. I am aware of certain preachers and elders in the churches of Christ in southern states who are members of the KKK and other racially divided clubs and organizations.

Most churches of Christ vote republican based on moral issues such as abortion and homosexuality, etc. Those who vote democratic do so on the basis the moral issue of assisting the poor, the disabled, and the aged. The southern strategy devised by Herbert Hoover (A rich banker) after his 1932 loss to Franklin Roosevelt caused most of this division which exists to this very day. Hoover’s plan was to pay money to southern white churches to vote republican, and relinquish the black vote to the democrats. Ever since that time, most white southern church goers, who used to be called “Yellow dog Democrats” have voted republican.

What is sad about all church division is that it’s condemned by the scriptures. Paul said, “Now I plead with you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment.” 1 Cor 1:10

God’s Word Unites

When all saints abide by the doctrine of Christ, unity is the result. God, Christ and the Holy Spirit are One, and if we abide in them, so are we. 1 Jn 5:7; Jn 14:20 Every early day Christian believed and confessed Jesus was the Christ the Son of God. Rom 10:9,10 Every early day Christian repented and were baptized for the remission of their sins. Acts 2:38 Every early day Christian met upon the first day of the week to remember the Lord’s death, and to give of their means. Acts 20:7; 1 Cor 16:1,2 Every early day Christian sang without the use of instruments. Eph 5:19 Every early day Christian preached the doctrine of Christ, and prayed with the Spirit and understanding. 2 Jn 9; 1 Cor 14:15 Every early day church had elders who fed the flock. Acts 14:23; Tit 1:5; Acts 20:28 Most churches of Christ are united on all of these because it is the doctrine of Christ. As Paul said, “Till we all come to the UNITY of the FAITH and of the Knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ;” Eph 4:13

Any division, unless it’s over the doctrine of Christ, is not worth our eternal soul, or the soul of others. If one eats meat and the other vegetables only, we are not to let our freedom destroy the soul of others who are weak in the faith. Rom 14 Gospel preachers are to preach the doctrine of Christ, and nothing more. The doctrine of Christ doesn’t divide, but unites. The doctrines of men divide us from the truth, and if we are divided, we shall not stand. Mt 12:25; Mk 3:33; Tit 1:14 If riches, racism, and politics can divide a nation of 300 million, it can easily divide the Lord’s church, which in fact, it already has.

There will come a time for division when God shall divide the sheep from the goats, the sinner from the saint, and place a great gulf between them. Mt 25:32; Lk 16:19-31 Until that day come, let brotherly love continue in the unity of the faith, and let there be no divisions be placed among us. Eph 4:13; 1 Cor 1:10

Character Matters

What does it mean to have good character? There are several things which make up a good character, but none are as important as telling the truth. Keeping our promises is the only thing which can save our eternal life. Let the bible prove it.

BELIEF & CONFESSION Romans 10:9,10

Imagine saying that you believe Jesus is the Christ, and a few weeks later saying that you don’t. Question: Would God accept your belief as truth? Can one believe in Jesus every day of their life except the last one, and still be saved? The answer is, of course not, no more than one believing in Jesus the day they were baptized, and the rest of their life denying Jesus is the Christ.

What we believe and confess means something to God. God is asking for our belief to be confessed before man, and for us to keep that belief for the rest of our life without wavering. Heb 10:23

REPENTANCE AND BAPTISM Acts 2:38

Imaging repenting of your sins, and being baptized into Christ, but then go back to your sinful lifestyle? Question: Would God accept your repentance and baptism and save you anyway? The answer is, of course not. If one is an adulterer before they are baptized and then return to that adultery, they are still an adulterer.

God will not accept our repentance or baptism as sufficient for salvation if we renege on our promise to depart from evil, and return back to it.

FAITHFULNESS Revelations 2:10

When we are asked to remain faithful until death, it implies that we continue to believe that Jesus is the Christ, and are not ashamed to confess this before mankind. It implies that we repent of our sins and not to go back to them. It implies that we are willing to suffer for the cause of Christ, to be tried, and not depart from the faith.

Conclusion: Character matters because truth never changes. 2 Cor 1:18 Anyone who constantly changes their mind can’t be trusted with the truth. God has character, and demands that all Christians have character as well. It is the true meaning of the gospel. God made a promise to give us eternal life if we obey and remain faithful to the gospel. God gave his Word, and has kept it. If we have the character of God, we will keep God’s Word, and never depart from it. God and Christ  changes not, and demands us to obey Him and change not.  Mal 3:6; Heb 13:8 This is the true character of God, and this is the true character of a Christian.

Where Are They Now?

Have you ever wondered what happened to your favorite actor, singer, or politician? You watch their movies, you listen to their songs, and you revered their political rhetoric, but no longer see or hear from them anymore. It’s imperative to look at them because they chose a different path to travel that might be reflecting your decision of whether to follow God, or them. Let’s take a look at just a few of them today.

Singing Stars

Singing stars like Elvis Presley and Frank Sinatra were legends in their days. No one dominated the stage better than they. Elvis Presley had a span of only 2 decades of both stage and Hollywood and made over 5 billion dollars. In that span of time he also earned the name of King of Rock and Roll. He died at the age of 42. Several decades Sinatra dominated his genre and Hollywood, and became mega rich; and for the record, he did things his way. He died at the age of 82. Both men never obeyed the the gospel of Christ. 2 Thess 1:7-9

Movie Stars

Rock Hudson and Cary Grant dominated Hollywood like no other two actors. They were the quintessential stage idols who have no peers before or since.They were Hollywood gold, and dominated the screen many years. It wasn’t until his death that the public discovered Hudson was homosexual. Rock Hudson died of aids at the age of 59. It’s often been rumored that Grant was bisexual, but was never been proven conclusively. Cary Grant died at the age of 82 from a massive stroke. Both men never obeyed the the gospel of Christ. 2 Thess 1:7-9

Politicians

John Kennedy and Ronald Reagan  were the most legendary politicians of their time. Kennedy enjoyed not only the popularity of the public, but also enjoyed the ladies. He was the youngest elected president. Kennedy was assassinated in Dallas Texas at the age of 46 at the height of his popularity. Ronald Reagan enjoyed a Hollywood career, and a political career as well. He was the oldest elected president. He was shot in the first year of his administration, but survived it. He died of Alzheimer’s disease at the age of 93. Both men never obeyed the gospel of Christ. 2 Thess 1:7-9

The Servants of God

Moses and Elijah were both at the transfiguration of Jesus Christ. Though the old testaments had many great servants, none were greater than these. Moses lead the children of Israel out of Egypt, and followed God impeccably with only one exception (Smiting the rock). Elijah withstood the 450 false prophets of Jezebel, and was taken up into heaven on a chariot of fire. Moses was buried by God at the age of 120. Elijah never saw death. Both men obey God explicitly. Rev 22:14

Peter and Paul were without question the greatest of the apostles. Peter was the only apostle to actually walk on water with Christ. Mt 14:29 Though he denied Christ 3 times, he repented and never strayed again. Paul was the chief writer of the new testament. Before obeying the gospel he persecuted the church, but once converted, he never strayed. Both men obeyed the gospel of Christ, suffered greatly, and remained faithful till death. Rev 22:14

Conclusion: Jesus asked the question: What shall a man give in exchange for his soul? Mt 16:26 Yes, it can be truly stated that the stars of this earth shined brighter, but once they died, they all had hell to pay. They all were given the consolation of this world and paid the ultimate price. Lk 6:24 They chose to follow their dream and have life their way, as opposed to obeying God’s way.

Yes, godly men suffered greatly in their service to God. 2 Tim 3:12 Yet, their reward is eternal with God in heaven. They lived, and saw this earth even as evil men did, but they will see heavenly rewards as well because they chose to obey God rather than men. Acts 5:29 We all live, and we all die, but we all shall not reign with Christ, except we choose to suffer with Christ. Heb 9:27; 2 Tim 2:12  Even if we are given the lives of evil men as illustrated here, and live long lives enjoying every second, what does it profit us. Job 21: 13-15 Right now I am sure each of these evil men would like to have one more opportunity to make the right choice and follow God. They don’t have that chance, but you do.David said, “Verily, there is a reward for the righteous..” Ps 58:11 Blessed is the man that endures temptation that they might have a crown of life. Jam 1:12

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