Seek The Old Paths

Vol. 24   No. 7                   July,   2013

This Issue...


William Davis
The Holy Spirit did not come to give an emotional experience. He did not come to excite, stimulate or cause anyone to flail, thrash or whirl about uncontrollably.


        The Bible has a secondary place with Pentecostals as compared to experience. This does not mean they do not claim to love and honor the Word of God. They do. However, they constantly show by their actions that experience is far more important than what Scripture says.
        Pentecostalism is all about feeling good. Charismatics speak about celebrating where worship is concerned. They all want an emotional high when they come together for worship. They believe these positive emotions are an indicator of the presence of God and that presence takes priority over what is written.
        Listen to one of the leaders in the Assemblies of God. George O. Wood writes: “As Pentecostals, we intuitively approach the biblical text in a manner different from most of our evangelical brothers and yes, sisters. We factor in the element of experience as a lens through which we look at Scripture.” (
        The problem with this is that it leads to subjectivism. When experience is your highest priority, truth becomes subjective, Scripture is ignored.
        Steve Hill of the Brownsville Revival said: “In these latter days preaching and simply teaching the word is no longer sufficient, the Spirit has to get involved, through signs and wonders due to much sin that abounds.” (Brownsville, 12/14/96)
        John Wimber of the Vineyard movement stated: “There’s nothing in Scripture that supports these kinds of phenomena that I can see, and I can’t think of anything throughout the church age that would. ... So I feel no obligation to try to explain it. It’s just phenomena. It’s just people responding to God.” (Holy Laughter, Albert James Dager, 1996). It’s interesting that Wimber openly admits that the charismatic phenomena that was taking place (such as in Toronto) had no Biblical authority or historical precedent.
        During the Toronto and Brownsville revivals, it was not uncommon to hear many of the leaders and teachers make the declaration, “God will offend your mind in order to reveal your heart.” Since they could not justify what was taking place in those meetings by the Scripture, they felt this statement gave the phenomena approval. So even though they deny it, Pentecostals openly disregard the scriptures and appeal to feelings or experience as their ultimate source of truth. It becomes evident that going by emotionalism leads people into fanaticism.
        Pentecostals wrongly believe that their precedent for emotionalism was established on the day of Pentecost. They believe the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost was more about an emotional experience than anything else. They stumble over the simplistic truth that the apostles spoke foreign languages by the operation of the Holy Spirit in order to communicate the wonderful truth of God (Acts 2:11). The context of Acts chapter two never reveals that the Holy Spirit came as an emotional experience as we see Pentecostals encouraging today. Emotionalism was not the purpose of the Spirit’s coming. There is nothing bizarre taking place in Acts two or any other place in the New Testament. The Holy Spirit did not come to excite anyone. He did not come to stimulate anyone. He did not come to cause anyone to flail, thrash or whirl about uncontrollably. The Spirit came sovereignly, filled the apostles and they spoke in languages they had not learned.
        You may ask, then where do Pentecostals get this idea from? They go by what was said by some who observed the apostles speaking in languages they obviously had never learned. Acts 2:13 says, “others mocking said, These men are full of new wine.” From this simple statement an entire theological philosophy has been constructed. They use this statement in order to encourage all types of strange and bizarre behavior during worship, even to the point of people making animal sounds while they go into a trance-like state. Statements are often made like, “we’re drunk in the Spirit.” Or, “this is the new wine.” Rodney Howard-Browne often encourages flippant, foolish and silly behavior by saying “this is Joel’s Bar...belly up to the bar!”
        Notice what the apostle Peter says as he sets the record straight. “For these are not drunken, as ye suppose, seeing it is but the third hour of the day” (Acts 2:15). Peter emphatically denies their mockery. But Pentecostals have been led to believe the opposite. They believe the apostles were drunk, inebriated, intoxicated —falling down drunk. Sadly, they teach this is what the Holy Spirit does to people. Had the apostles been drunk, Peter would have admitted it. He would have pointed out that the apostles were made drunk by the Spirit and not by wine.
        We can no more take what outsiders (enemies of the church) said on the Day Pentecost as fact than we can take what the enemies of Christ said about Him (cf. Luke 7:33-34). If we did so, we would have to believe that Jesus was a glutton and a drunk. Proper hermeneutics is key to understanding the Bible.


        Pentecostal and charismatic churches believe in women pastors and teachers over whole congregations. They believe Joel’s prophecy quoted by Peter in Acts two gives them the license they need. Acts 2:16-18, “But this is that which was spoken by the prophet Joel; 17And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams: 18And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy.” They believe that when the text says “daughters” and “handmaidens” would prophesy, that it justifies women as pastors, as elders, etc. This, of course, is a gross misunderstanding of the text.
        The significance of the pouring forth of God’s Spirit upon all flesh is that the Gospel was to go to all mankind just as Jesus said in the great commission (Mark 16:15-16). Prophecy (inspired teaching) was one of the spiritual gifts during the first century (cf. 1 Cor. 12:8-10); but, once its purpose was served (the inspired, complete, perfect, written word delivered), it was/is no longer in operation — it ceased (cf. 1 Cor. 13:8-10). However, even during New Testament times when spiritual gifts were exercised, women never assumed the position of preacher or teacher over a congregation. There is nothing in Joel’s prophecy that indicates a woman can serve as an elder or be put in charge over a congregation. There is nothing any place in the New Testament that suggests women can serve in the eldership or leadership of the church. Actually, the opposite is true. Paul writing to Timothy said, “Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection. But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence” (1 Tim. 2:11-12).
        When we were in Panama City, a preacher friend of mine called one day and asked me about this verse in Timothy. He wanted to know what I thought it meant. I paused for a moment and said, “It probably means what it says.” He wasn’t too pleased with that answer because his wife taught the adult Bible class at his church. As a matter of fact, he completely rejected that meaning of the passage because it wasn’t what he wanted it to mean. But the Scripture is clear on this subject. Notice what Paul said in 1 Cor. 14:34, “Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law.”
        Some Pentecostals contend that Paul was dealing with a cultural issue that has no bearing on today’s society when he gave this prohibition. Of course, to make such an assumption is to play fast and loose with the integrity of the text. Actually, postmodernists use this ploy on any biblical text they desire to change.


        They teach an incomplete plan of Salvation. It is some combination of “just believe” or “repent and believe” or “pray the sinner’s prayer and ask Jesus to come into your heart.”
        However, in the old days, Pentecostals did not believe in the sinner’s prayer. The old Pentecostals came out of the early holiness movement, so they believed in the mourners’ bench. They believed you were to come down to the altar and “pray through” to salvation. Basically, you “prayed through” for everything; salvation, sanctification, the baptism in the Holy Spirit, etc. A person “prayed through” until they felt like God had saved them. But due to the influx of various denominations through the Charismatic movement, Pentecostals have now adopted the more common or popular style.
        The Assemblies of God Web site states concerning salvation: “WE BELIEVE...Every Person Can Have Restored Fellowship with God Through ‘Salvation’ (trusting Christ, through faith and repentance, to be our personal Savior).” [1 of 4 cardinal doctrines of the Assemblies of God]
        The International Pentecostal Holiness Church in their doctrinal statement says: “We believe, teach and firmly maintain the scriptural doctrine of justification by faith alone (Romans 5:1).”
        How is it that both of these denominations claim the personal indwelling of the Holy Spirit and His guidance and yet they don’t agree with each other? And, how is it that the Holy Spirit inspired James to say “Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only” (James 2:24)? Yet, the Pentecostal Holiness claim a person is justified by faith alone? Obviously, both cannot be inspired by the Holy Spirit. They can’t both be right. The Holy Spirit didn’t inspire James to say one thing and the Assemblies of God and the Pentecostal Holiness something else! They treat the Holy Spirit as though He has Alzheimer’s!
        Denominational churches make a mockery of God in their doctrinal statements.
                 612 Edith Lane
                 Pensacola, FL 32534

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Garland M. Robinson

        There are scores of people who do not regard God nor accept his authority in religion. However, God’s authority is not optional. All must submit to it. Jesus Christ has all authority which has been given unto him by God the Father in heaven. Jesus said in Matthew 28:18, “...All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.” He therefore has the authority to tell us what to do and what not to do. There is no room for discussion or rebuttal. God’s word is final! The New Testament is the world’s operations manual. It and it alone tells us what is right and what is wrong.
        Jesus has been given “a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow...” (Phil. 2:9-10). If men do not submit to the Lord’s will in this life, they certainly will at the judgment on that last great day. Yet, many do not realize or believe they will stand before the Lord on that day and give an account of their life and deeds. But the good book says, “So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God” (Rom. 14:12). “For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ; that every one may receive the things done in his body, according to that he hath done, whether it be good or bad” (2 Cor. 5:10).
        What excuse could anyone possibly give on that occasion as to why they did not obey the Lord? If you are one who has not submitted to the Lord’s will, what could you possibly say?
        Will you say you did not know? God will not overlook your ignorance of his will. No one can say they didn’t know. “Because that which may be known of God is manifest (apparent, evident, known) in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse (Rom. 1:19-20).
        All that exists in this world and the entire universe cries out for mankind to recognize the creator. The design and order in nature did not come about by random acts of mishap and accident. Give it all the time you want and it won’t change a thing. Life did not come from non-life. All living creatures did not come from water or rocks. As a matter of fact, where did water and rocks come from. Science can’t answer this simple question. No wonder the Bible says, “The fool hath said in his heart, [There is] no God...” (Psa. 14:1). Tornadoes, floods and earthquakes do not leave in their path jumbo jets and ocean going vessels.
        God IS! He is the great I AM (Exodus 3:14). It’s man’s obligation to “ the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us” (Acts 17:27). God commands all men everywhere to repent (Acts 17:30)! Ignorance is an excuse that will not stand up on the day of judgment.
        Will you say you thought God was so good and loving that he would not condemn anyone? God is good (Mark 10:18). It’s because of his goodness that he gives stern warnings concerning people who think he will not punish the wicked. “I will punish the world for their evil, and the wicked for their iniquity; and I will cause the arrogancy of the proud to cease, and will lay low the haughtiness of the terrible” (Isa. 13:11). “...The Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power” (2 Thess. 1:7-9). Vengeance will come upon two classes of people: 1) those who don’t know God, and 2) those who know and don’t obey.
        God is so loving that he is not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance (2 Peter 3:9). Man condemns himself by his own sin (cf. Isa. 59:2). “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 17For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. 18He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. 21But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God” (John 3:16- 21).
        God will not save those who openly and outwardly reject him. He saves those who obey (Jer. 7:23; Matt. 7:21; Heb. 5:8-9). Will you obey?
        Will you say you intended to obey the Gospel but waited too late? God will not accept this excuse for he says “...behold, NOW [is] the accepted time; behold, NOW [is] the day of salvation” (2 Cor. 6:1-2). “Wherefore (as the Holy Ghost saith, TO DAY if ye will hear his voice, Harden not your hearts...” (Heb. 3:7-13).
        There is no guarantee of tomorrow. “Boast not thyself of to morrow; for thou knowest not what a day may bring forth” (Prov. 27:1). “For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away” (James 4:14). Why do you wait dear sinner? Why do you tarry so long? Paul stood before Felix and “...reasoned of righteousness (purity of life, correctness of thinking, feeling and acting), temperance (self control), and judgment to come.” Having done so fervently, the text says “Felix trembled, and answered, Go thy way for this time; when I have a convenient season, I will call for thee” (Acts 24:25). The Scriptures leave him waiting. There’s no indication he ever found his “so-called” convenient season. How many times has this been repeated since the beginning of this world? Don’t put off learning the truth and obeying it another day! Live for the Master the rest of your life. You will be so glad you did on the day of judgment. What a tragedy if you don’t!
        Will you say there were hypocrites in the church? There have always been hypocrites and always will. There were hypo- crites in the church of the first century. Ananias and Sapphira lost their lives because of it (Acts 5:1-11). Their deaths caused fear and reverence in the whole church. “And great fear came upon all the church, and upon as many as heard these things” (Acts 5:11).
        Such false brethren are to be dealt with (disciplined) in the local church. Second Thessalonians 3:6 demands it! “Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he received of us.” But even when weak churches do not withdraw from the wayward, that’s no excuse for you to not obey or be faithful. At the judgment, every man will stand by himself to be judged (2 Cor. 5:10). Even the hypocrites!
        If you don’t want to be around hypocrites on Sundays, then why are you choosing to be with them on a permanent basis in the devil’s hell in eternity? That doesn’t make sense does it?
        Will you say you did not know the church was essential to salvation? Jesus demonstrated its essentiality by dying for it. He purchased it with his own blood (Acts 20:28). He adds those who were/are being saved to it (Acts 2:47). It is his body (Eph. 1:22-23) and is declared to be the eternal purpose of God (Eph. 3:10-11). How can you say you did not know it was essential? The Lord Jesus is coming again to save it because it is the body of those who are saved (Eph. 5:23). It is the kingdom (body) he will one day present to the Father in heaven (1 Cor. 15:24). Won’t you be a member of it?
        How and why do people say the church is not important? Why do they say “give me Jesus but not the church?” They want the “head” (Eph. 1:22) but not the “body” (Eph. 1:23). A head without a body is useless. You can’t have one without the other (cf. Col. 1:18). People want to re-write the Bible, but they cannot do so and stay out of hell.
        Many say, “it’s the man that’s important, not the plan.” Don’t they realize they can’t have the man without his plan? Jesus said, “And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say” (Luke 6:46)? “Ye are my friends, IF ye DO whatsoever I command you” (John 15:14). “If ye love me, KEEP my commandments” (John 14:15). Jesus is the author of eternal salvation unto all those who OBEY him (cf. Heb. 5:9). Friend, why not become a member of the church of Christ today?
        Will you say you followed your parents and/or preacher? Indeed, Paul did say “Be ye followers of me,” but he did not stop there. He continued by saying, “even as I also am of Christ” (1 Cor. 11:1). We follow men only when they follow the Scriptures. The people of Berea “...were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so” (Acts 17:11).
        Every person is responsible for himself. John saw that the dead were judged “...according to THEIR works” (Rev. 20:12). “The soul that sinneth, IT shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him” (Ezek. 18:20).
        There is going to be a judgment one day just as sure as you are reading this right now. For “it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment” (Heb. 9:27). You will be there and cannot escape it! Therefore, let no one be found in rebellion against God trying to argue with him by offering excuses.
        Let us be among those who will stand before the Lord as sheep and not as goats (Matt. 25:33). Therefore, let us live “soberly, righteously, and godly in this present world” (Titus 2:11-12) “and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:13).
        What possible excuse might you offer? Whatever it might be, it won’t work!

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Elders Column

Roger D. Campbell

        In the English Bible, the word “deacon” is used in only two New Testament passages. The first is Philippians 1:1, where it is written, “Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ, to all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi, with the bishops and deacons [all emphasis throughout mine, rdc]. The second usage is in 1 Timothy 3, where the qualifications/requirements for deacons are listed. “Likewise must the deacons be grave...let them use the office of a deacon...Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife...For they that have used the office of a deacon well...” (1 Tim. 3:8,10,12,13).
        What do deacons do, anyway?
        Deacons serve. They serve God, they serve the eldership, and they serve the congregation. They are the church’s special servants. In fact, the Greek word from which we get our word “deacon” (diakonos) literally means “servant.” Jesus was a servant (Rom. 15:8), Paul was a servant (2 Cor. 3:6), and all followers of Jesus are servants (John 12:26). But deacons are a local church’s specially selected, official group of servants.
        Deacons obey them that have the rule over them, the elders (Heb. 13:17). Like the rest of the sheep in the flock of God, deacons are under the oversight of the eldership (1 Peter 5:1-3).
        Deacons receive assignments from the pastors (elders). The eldership oversees and bears the ultimate responsibility for every activity of the local church. In all that constitutes the church’s worship, evangelism, benevolence, edification, and use of the physical facilities, the elders assign each individual deacon specific areas in which to serve and take the lead in carrying out particular activities.
        Deacons report to the overseers about their assigned tasks. They communicate to the elders how those works are progressing, what obstacles they face, what supplies or assistance they might need, and offer ideas for how specific works can be improved.
        Deacons organize work activities. A deacon may be responsible for seeing to it that the church building is closed after services. That does not mean that he personally must close the doors in each instance, but he is to see to it that someone is accountable for getting it done —that’s called organization. The same would be true for seeing to it that the baptistery is cleaned, Lord’s Supper is prepared, etc.
        Deacons ask for assistance. That does not imply they are trying to get out of work or are being lazy. A deacon may have some tasks that he can successfully carry out on his own. Others, though, may require several helping hands. When deacons seek our assistance, let us be ready to lend a hand.
        Deacons work behind the scenes in many cases. If they give an oral financial report to the congregation or get up in the middle of services to adjust the thermostat, we would surely notice their involvement. Much of the time, though, their work is not done in the forefront. That is why it is so important for them to have the heart of a servant, because true servants do not serve for the recognition.
        Deacons stay out of the shepherds’ way. They know they are not shepherds of the flock and they do not try to interfere with or take over the shepherds’ duties. It is not the case that “elders and deacons” form a ruling board together. Elders are the church’s sole overseers (superintendents, rulers). Deacons, while they do not attempt to be co-rulers with the overseers, they do offer input and insight to the elders, just like every other member of the congregation is entitled to do.
        Deacons learn to live with criticism. Any deacon that has been on the job for any length of time has had some whispering going on about how he does or does not do his work. From the temperature setting on the thermostat to the color of the visitors cards on the back of the seats, you cannot please everyone. Deacons know that, so they keep serving despite the criticism. Why? Because they have a servant’s heart.
        Deacons set good examples. They are to start their work as “blameless” people (1 Tim. 3:10) and continue to be such. They understand that having their name on the front of the bulletin does not make them better than others, but it does mean that the church expects (and deserves!) for them to be a godly example in all aspects of life.
        Deacons do more than deac. Yes, they have specific, unique assignments because they are deacons, but they serve in other ways that are not part of their specific deacon-related work. Like all Christians, they seek to serve widows, help the sick, use their talents, and do whatever they can to help build up the Lord’s Cause.
        Deacons spend time with their families. They are family men (1 Tim. 3:12). They put the Lord first and they reliably carry out their deacon-related tasks, but they also need to be a husband, dad, and grandpa. They are men that have to juggle a busy schedule in order not to neglect what needs to be done.
        Deacons thank God for their wives. Since she is “faithful in all things” (1 Tim. 3:11), he expresses thanks to God for giving him such a great helper and the one human whom he can always count on to understand and support him.
        Deacons attend meetings of the deacons or of both deacons and elders. That is not all they do, but attending such meetings comes with the territory.
        Thank God for faithful deacons.
                 120 Will Lewis Dr. SE
                 Cleveland, TN 37323

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[EDITOR’S NOTE: I have heard prayers through the years that prayed for “the elders and the deacons who oversee this church.” The fact is, elders AND deacons DO NOT oversee the church. God’s arrangement is that elders oversee the local church (Acts 20:28). Deacons are not overseers. They are servants. —gmr]

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Roy J. Hearn (deceased)

        Many years ago Henry Drummond wrote a book by the above title. The apostle Paul wrote on the same subject, and antedated Drummond by about 1800 years.
        First Corinthians Chapter 13 was an outgrowth of a discussion of spiritual gifts in chapters 12 through 14. There was considerable strife, envy, jealousies and divisions among the Corinthian saints. In chapter 12, Paul uses the physical body to illustrate the unity that ought to characterize the church. All the members should have the same care for each other. There should be no schism in the body. As long as the physical body is healthy, all members will be subject to the head. Every member will see to the good of every other. Likewise, Christ is the head of the church, and if every member will be subject to the Head, there will never be division nor any evil among brethren.
        Paul admitted that the working of miracles was great, but there was “a more excellent way” (1 Cor. 12:31). That way is the way of love. Love is one of the greatest shortages in the church today. The love of God is to keep His commandments (1 John 5:3). One of His commands is that there should be fervent love among Christians. If there were, nobody would seek to down anybody, but would seek interest in others (Rom. 12:9-10). Great will be the judgment of those who do not heed this charge.


        Paul said, “Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity (love), I am become [as] sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.” He is saying that without love, one is simply a big noise —that he is valueless and empty. There is an old saying, “An empty wagon rattles loudest.” Older people may remember log wagons going through the forests or to the lumber mill. When empty, they could be heard to rattle and echo through the woods, but when loaded, hardly a sound could be heard.
        Miracles have passed, but some today gloat over worldly accomplishments, exalting themselves above others and even seek to trod down those of whom they think less than themselves. Performing miracles in the first century was no guarantee of salvation, and neither are high performances today. Judas was able to perform miracles, but went to his own place. Paul shows in I Corinthians 13:2 that though one had the greatest degree of faith and the greatest of spiritual gifts, but lacking love, he was/is nothing. He has failed in God’s design and purpose; there is nothing of value; all is lost.
        In verse two, the apostle shows that though one makes the greatest sacrifices in benevolence or sacrifice as a martyr, though he have the praise of men (Matt. 6:1-4), he is nothing.


        1. “Love suffereth long.” It causes one to be slow to anger, slow to judge or condemn others (Rom. 2:1-4), and shows patient endurance toward others. Many saints hold to things that are inconsistent with love.
        2. “Love is kind.” It is gentle and demonstrates tender affection. The Holy Spirit commands to “put on kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness and longsuffering” (Col. 3:12).
        3. “Rejoiceth with truth.” God’s word is truth and will make free (John 17:17; 8:32), hence one with love in his heart will rejoice to hear it preached. Love will rejoice over truth advanced and defended, regardless of who teaches it, and that others will be successful in good works. Paul set the example (Phil. 1:12-18).
        4. “Beareth (or covereth) all things.” Love hides or conceals the faults of others, and is patient and longsuffering and not disposed to revenges (See Rom. 12:19; Heb. 10:30).
        5. “Believeth all things.” Ready to believe the best of everyone, and not have a tendency to look for flaws.
        6. “Hopeth all things.” That all things will turn out well, confidence that God will hear our prayers, and will give favorable answer, that wayward members will be restored, etc.
        7. “Endureth all things.” The Christian is called upon to endure sufferings as good soldiers, and not retaliate for wrong doing, or mistreatment, but to “pray for those who despitefully treat and persecute you.”
        8. “Taketh no account of evil.” The saint is not to be disposed to find fault, but to put the best motive on the conduct of others, and not look only for points of criticism.
        9. “Rejoiceth not in unrighteousness.” Christians should not be delighted when others are guilty of sin or crime, or are avenged, or evil reports given, but rather grieve when a member is overtaken in sin. Too often one’s face lights up when he hears of evil about others.


        1. “Love envieth not.” One should not be zealous against another person, nor grieved because another has greater earthly or mental or spiritual blessings than he (Rom. 12:10).
        2. “Vaunteth not itself.” This is a common sin, more prevalent than it ought to be, in fact never should be. A real Christian will never brag or boast of superiority over others, or treat others with contempt.
        3. “Is not puffed up.” One should not think more highly of himself than he ought to think (Rom. 12:3), nor be proud and vain, but rather imitate the Lord Jesus Christ in humility.
        4. “Doth not behave itself unseemly.” Great demonstrations of anger and displeasure, and improper and disgraceful conduct should be avoided. “Ye are the light of the world.”
        5. “Seeketh not its own.” Such is selfish to seek one’s own good to the hurt of others. “My rights end where your rights begin.”
        6. “Is not provoked.” The Christian should not be easily roused to anger, or given to wrath. Some are prone to do so when their conduct is questioned.


        First Peter 1:22 demands that Christians love one another fervently. First John 3:14-20 teaches that one should not love in word only, but in deed, and that one who does not love his brother abides in death. (Brethren, please try to make yourselves more lovable!) Love is eternal, hence, true, IT IS THE GREATEST THING IN THE WORLD.

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Charles Box

        The blood of Christ was offered to obtain eternal redemption for us. “Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us. For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh; How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God” (Heb. 9: 12-14)? Calvary is the focal point of all history.


        “What! know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s” (1 Cor. 6:19-20). God’s right to our service and devotion is on the grounds of redemption. “Ye are bought with a price.” The idea of redemption presupposes the guilt which sin had brought to humanity. Peter reminds us that redemption was not by things corruptible but by Christ’s precious blood. “Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot” (1 Peter 1:18-19).


        One redeemed cannot serve men but must serve the Almighty God of heaven and earth. “Ye are bought with a price; be not ye the servants of men” (1 Cor. 7:23). What a difference when Christians look upon themselves as servants. Our chief aim in life ought to be the service of God. As Christians go through daily life, what a difference they make because by redemption they go as servants. Before all else and above all else our minds should focus on service to our Creator.


        “Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works” (Titus 2:14). Christ died to redeem humanity from the guilt of sin and also from the practice of it. Christ gave himself for us with the purpose of purification in mind. The redemption of Christ is redemption from iniquity or lawlessness. The death of Christ serves both for our past and continual cleansing as we live on earth. Purity of life is a mark of the redeemed.


        “Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many” (Matt. 20:28). Christ lived a pure life and suffered the penalty for sin. The sin was our sin. “All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all” (Isa. 53:6). He voluntarily paid the price for our sins. The price of redemption was a life. It was the life of the sinless son of God. Remember, He has redeemed you —you are not your own.


        “Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood” (Acts 20:28). The church is of priceless value because of its purchase price —the blood of Christ. “THE” church belongs to God and is under his authority. There is no salvation outside of “THE” church which Christ purchased with his blood.


        “In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace” (Eph. 1:7). Redemption is from: 1) the devil and his destruction, 2) evil and its effects, 3) sin and its guilty stain and, 4) lust and other wrongs which lash out against the soul. God joins redemption and forgiveness of sins together. Only God can forgive sins. Forgiveness takes place in His mind. Sin is a guilty act which must be forgiven. In Christ we have redemption and forgiveness of sins.
        Redemption is possible only by the sacrifice of Jesus. The blood of the Son of God was shed for the salvation of a lost world. Our Lord has obtained redemption for us. To be saved from sins by the blood of his cross: hear the gospel (Rom. 10:17), believe in Him (John 8:24), repent or perish (Luke 13:5), confess with your mouth (Rom. 10:9-10), be baptized in water (Acts 22:16). Our redemption is by His blood. Out of appreciation for that sacrifice, let us be faithful in God’s service.

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A book of outlines were published of “Seek The Old Paths Lectureship” for 17 years. Only 8 of those years are still available (3 of these have been out of print for years but are now available again: Corinth, Colosse & 7 Churches of Asia. Numerous other books are also available. Check it out.

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[EDITOR’S NOTE: The following letter was written to brother Ron Gilbert of the Rock Valley Church of Christ in Tompskinsville, Kentucky. Brother Gilbert does work in Africa and Malaysia as well as here in the states. A part of this work involves Bible Correspondence Courses that are offered around the world. I thought our readers might also enjoy this man’s note from Kenya, Africa. ... “Dear Brother Ronald, I greet you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, Who is also our savior. Yes, I have internet in my home and I was able to do and complete my IBTM correspondence course using it. I came to know about ICOTB from Seek The Old Paths (STOP) web site. I live in central part of Kenya, in Nyeri county, very near Mt Kenya, about 150Km North of Nairobi city. The nearest Town is Nyeri. Have a blessed day” ...Duncan. Brother Gilbert needs more teachers to help with the Bible Correspondence Course work. You can use your computer through email. If you’re interested, contact him at: or]. “William J. Wheeler has passed away” ...Nashville, TN. “I am so glad to get Seek The Old Paths. My dad was a gospel preacher for about 60 years. Keep up the good work. Thank you so much” ...Monnie Helms, Sand Springs, OK. “Thank you so much for the Biblical articles which are much needed in our country and society today” ...Wilma Stagner, Bowling Green, KY. “Keep up the good work on proclaiming the Gospel. The Bible means what it says and says what it means” ...Everett Poteet, Imboden, AR. “We have lost members because of moving and deaths so we only need 10 copies of Seek The Old Paths. Thank you and keep up the great work” ...Catherine Skelton, Seligman, MO. “I would like to thank you very much for your stance of God’s word and the dedication of the men who contribute articles to STOP. I’ve been receiving your publication for many years and have enjoyed your perspective and learned many things from your hard work. Sometimes it seems it would be easier to bend just a little, a slight compromise, maybe simply out of convenience, but I’ve come to understand what truly is easiest is to view God’s word as YES or NO. When you can take the MAYBE out of his word, and thereby our life, life becomes so much easier and more enjoyable. Thanks for getting rid of the MAYBEs. I am moving and would like to change my address” ...Russell Deen, Oxford, WI. “You have so many good articles in STOP that should be of great help if only people would listen and do them. I need more back issues to distribute” ...Gallipolis, OH. “I have moved. Please change my address” ...Jennie Bobo, Talbott, TN. “Please note for your records in regards to mailing out the STOP publication, my new address. Please continue sending the STOP to me. The study material I receive is of great help in my walk in life as a Christian. With limited access to fellowship with church of Christ preachers themselves being allowed in the prisons I’ve been at, I’m left to the mercy of mail fellowship by way of studies such as STOP. To me, truth means everything and I am blessed to be able to receive studies in truth from the churches of Christ as well as to be able to write their preachers and elders for help in my questions means a lot as well. Someday my fellowship will be with all saints every where in heaven and I look forward to that when it happens” ...Claude Mazza, Green Rock Correctional Center, Chatham, VA. “Verdie Bray passed away in 2004. Please discontinue the bulletin” ...Pontotoc, MS. “To be faithful to God is to be faithful wherever we are. I have known of Christians who did not attend services while on vacation. It is as if we sometimes think we can run and hide or get away from God! We are only putting ourselves in the dilemma that Amos wrote about in Amos 5:19, ’As if a man did flee from a lion, and a bear met him; or went into the house, and leaned his hand on the wall, and a serpent bit him.’ Worship and serve the Lord wherever we go! He’ll be there also” ...Del Brantley, Salem, KY. “Dear elders of Leoni Church of Christ, Please keep sending STOP. It is encouraging to see such a wonderful work of the church being done” ...Michael Ivey, Gonzales, TX. “Return to sender. Take me off your list” ...Dovie Jarvis, Paducah, KY. “Return to sender. Remove from list” ...Billie Shikle, Tuscumbia, AL. “I have read and reread your October and November 2012 issues and found it so true and so helpful. I am a pro-life person and very active. I have had meetings with brothers and sisters about pro-life/right- to-life issues and am told it’s political and they do not want to get involved. I know God is with me in standing up for his creation. I feel very much alone. My commitment is not to man, but to Christ and his plan for my life and I know pro-life is that commitment. When I see Obama/Biden bumper stickers on my brothers’ and sisters’ cars, I believe we have wandered far afield of truth. God bless you. Thank you” ...Joyce Ice, Springfield, OR. “My wife, Ethel Jackson, passed away in February. I am sending a small check to help you” ...Marvin Jackson, Jacksonville, FL. “Please make a note of my new address” ...Lloyd B. Marshall, Jr., Picayune, MS. “This is a check to help with your sound paper STOP. Much needed today. I would ask at this time if possible to add to your mailing list a sister in Christ. Thank you. Keep up the good work for the Lord” ...Alex Dickson, Boulder City, NV. “Thank you for Seek The Old Paths. I enjoy them. I wish to remain anonymous” ...Gainesboro, TN. “Your paper is wonderful. God bless you. Thanks. No name please” ...Cushing, OK.

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The goal has been met in raising funds for the new printer! Thanks to everyone who helped us. At the time the June issue was prepared for printing, $4,000 was in hand; but by the time it was mailed, the entire amount had been received. The new printer has arrived and we are so thankful. You’ve made it possible to purchase and repair some much needed equipment. What a blessing it is to have brethren such as you to help spread the Gospel. We pray you will remain sound in the faith once delivered. Thanks so much and God bless you all.

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Bound Volumes (with a complete index) for the years of
1995-2002 can be ordered from:
Old Paths Publishing
2007 Francis Ferry Rd.
McMinnville, TN 37110
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