Looking through our newspaper, the HOBBS NEWS-SUN,
(Hobbs, New Mexico) Saturday, October 22, 2005, an article entitled
Churches to host Harvest Carnival captured my
attention. Reporter Michelle A. Fox began the article with the
words, It is not something that happens very often outside of
a disaster three churches of different denominations getting
together on a project. Reading that statement didnt seem
surprising, as denominations have been working together for years.
Denominations refer to themselves as particular parts of the
universal church. With this misinformed view of
Christs church, it is logical that denominations are willing
to cooperate on most activities.
It was the next two paragraphs that surprised
and saddened me. The article stated, On Sunday, Oct. 30,
Taylor Street Church of Christ, First United Methodist Church and
First Baptist Church will host a Harvest Carnival near the
churches. The next paragraph included a quote from Tim
Day, the family life minister at Taylor Street church of Christ.
This is going to be an exciting event,
particularly for this area of town, said Tim Day, Taylor
Street family life minister. The fact that three
different denominations are working cooperatively to bring this
event to the neighborhood makes it more exciting.
This became even more distressing, not only
because a group claiming to be the Lords church was having
fellowship with denominations, but also because the group bearing
the name of the Lords church was depicting themselves as a
Surely Tim Day did not make that statement! I
know that I, at times, have been misquoted by newspaper reporters.
Therefore, I called Tim Day and found out that he did indeed make
the statement. Of course he explained that he was only using this
term in the manner the world understands.
In my reply to Tim Day, I stated that I try to
explain to people that we are not a denomination. But I also stated
it is becoming more difficult for the world to understand or accept
this concept as others who are members of the church of
Christ refer to themselves as a denomination. Tim Day then
asked if I thought a certain person in a certain denomination was
a part of Christs church. I told him, No, because he
doesnt teach what is necessary to get into Christs
church, and he doesnt worship according to the teaching of the
New Testament. You see, Tim Day really does believe he is a
part of a denomination, although he would say Taylor Street church
is closer to the truth than other denominations.
I believe the action taken by Taylor Street
church of Christ in Hobbs was unauthorized for three reasons:
1) I cannot find in the word of God where the
church (nor individuals in the church) has authority to celebrate
holidays of pagans. Paul was concerned about Christians
who were celebrating special days commanded under the Law of Moses.
Galatians 4:9-11 states, But now, after that ye have
known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the
weak and beggarly elements, whereunto ye desire again to be in
bondage? Ye observe days, and months, and times, and years. I am
afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain.
In the article mentioned above,
trunk-or-treating was a part of the activities of the
Harvest Carnival. I assume this was planned to observe
Halloween. This holiday originated from the false
celebration of All Saints Day or All Hallows
Day. On the eve preceding All Saints Day, it
was believed the evil forces appeared, hence All Hallow
Even, shortened to Halloween. The Lords church
should never be connected to such a celebration of evil forces, no
matter how harmless it might appear.
For Christians to celebrate Easter as
a religious holiday is also unauthorized in Gods word.
Christians are commanded to remember the Lords death each
first day of the week when assembled together to worship God (I
Cor. 11:26). Neither is there any authorization from Gods word
for the church to celebrate Christmas as Christs birthday. For
individuals to celebrate Christmas as a strictly secular holiday is
not wrong, but we must never join with the world in celebration of
2) We are not to cooperate or have fellowship
with the world. John wrote in II John, verses 9-11,
Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of
Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he
hath both the Father and the Son. If there come any unto you, and
bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither
bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of
his evil deeds. This type of cooperation (referred to in
the above mentioned article) is certainly bidding God
speed to the denominations. Paul said again in Ephesians 5:11,
And have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of
darkness, but rather reprove them.
3) To call Christs church a denomination
is to make it as one of the many churches in the world.
In Matthew 16:18 Jesus said, ...upon this rock I will
build my church (emphasis mine, CLI). In I
Corinthians 12:13, we are baptized into one body. In
Ephesians 4:4, there is one body. Paul said it very well
in I Corinthians 1:10, Now I beseech you, brethren, by
the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same
thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be
perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same
Brethren, if we seek to help the religious world
by becoming one of them, how can we make a difference and teach
those outside of Christ? We must do what Paul enjoined in II
Corinthians 6:14-18: Be ye not unequally yoked together
with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with
unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And
what concord hath Christ with Belial? or what part hath he that
believeth with an infidel? And what agreement hath the temple of
God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God
hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be
their God, and they shall be my people. Wherefore come out from
among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the
unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto
you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord
PO Box 171
Tatum, NM 88267
Table of Contents
GOD ORDAINED WORSHIP
Garland M. Robinson
God-ordained worship is a place where we stand in
awe of the majesty and presence of God. We recognize that when we
participate in those things prescribed by God Himself, we are
pleasing in His sight. When we incorporate our own actions and add
to what He has commanded, we know He is not pleased weve
turned from worshiping Him to doing that which appeals to us. What
we like and what makes us feel good is not an
option. We must act totally under His authority if we desire His
We find five acts of worship outlined in the New
Testament church. These are performed on the Lords day, the
first day of the week. They include:
What a joy to lift up our voices with the whole
congregation in praise and adoration to our heavenly Father. Two
verses especially give us direction in our worship in song:
Ephesians 5:19, Speaking to yourselves in psalms and
hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart
to the Lord and Colossians 3:16, Let the word
of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom; teaching and
admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs,
singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. From
these verses we learn that acceptable worship in singing is done by
the whole congregation singing together, not special groups of
singers such as choirs, choruses, solos, duets, etc.
We learn that the songs used are limited to
psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Songs of patriotism or ballads
of secular interest have no place in God-ordained worship.
We learn that our singing is to be acappella;
that is, without the accompaniment of mechanical instruments of
music such as a piano, guitar, drum, etc. Acappella is simply the
human voice speaking WORDS wherein we, as well as others, may learn
(be taught) the will of God. This does not include sounds such as
humming, whistling, imitating mechanical instruments, clapping,
stomping, beating, or whatever. Words communicate
thoughts and concepts. They teach and admonish. Other sounds do
not. Humming does not teach. Clapping does not instruct. Cornelius
was instructed that Peter would come and tell him WORDS whereby he
and all his house may be saved (Acts 11:14). If Peter had hummed or
played a harp when he arrived in Caesarea, Cornelius would not have
learned what he needed to do to be saved. He had to speak WORDS.
On the first day of the week, there is a period of
Biblical instruction. The congregation is to be fed a diet of
spiritual words so they may learn and grow. As newborn
babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow
thereby (I Peter 2:2). But grow in grace, and
in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be
glory both now and for ever (I Peter 3:18). This is what
Paul did when he met with the brethren at Troas. ...Paul
preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued
his speech until midnight (Acts 20:7). The whole book of
Acts consists of sermon after sermon, lesson after lesson. People
must be taught before they can obey the Lord. Jesus said,
No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me
draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day. It is written in
the prophets, And they shall be all taught of God. Every man
therefore that hath heard, and hath learned of
the Father, cometh unto me (John 6:44-45). God draws
people unto Him by and through the Gospel the
teaching/preaching of His will (II Thess. 2:14). Preaching must be
thus saith the Lord, not thus saith me. It must
be sound words, not unsound words. Paul wrote to Titus,
But speak thou the things which become sound
doctrine (Titus 2:1). Timothy was to hold on to the form
or pattern of sound words (II Tim. 1:13) and preach the
word (II Tim. 4:2). There have always been many who will
not receive it. They do not love it and will not obey it. Instead,
they despise it; men like Hymenaeus, Alexander (I Tim. 1:20) and
Philetus (II Tim. 2:17). Friend, dont be in that camp.
Jesus taught his disciples to pray (Matt. 6:5-15)
and gives us an example that we should follow His steps (I Peter
2:21; Matt. 14:23; 26:36; Mark 6:46; Luke 5:16; 6:12; John 17). It
is no wonder then that we see the early church continuing steadfast
in prayer (Acts 2:42; 4:31; 6:4,6; 8:15; 12:5; 13:3; 14:23).
Prayer is directed to God the Father in the name
of Jesus the Son. Jesus taught the disciples saying,
After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which
art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name (Matt. 6:9).
And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I
do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son (John
14:13; 15:16). And in that day ye shall ask me nothing.
Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall ask the
Father in my name, he will give it you (John
16:23). Prayer is not to be offered to anyone but our heavenly
Father. We do not pray to any man, whether Mary or dead saints!
Every Christian is to contribute a portion of that
which he/she has prospered. By inspiration, Paul instructed the
church at Corinth, Now concerning the collection for the
saints, as I have given order to the churches of Galatia, even so
do ye. Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by
him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no
gatherings when I come (I Cor. 16:1-2). The time
specified for this to be done is the first day of the
week. It is to be a free-will offering given with a cheerful
heart. But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall
reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap
also bountifully. Every man according as he purposeth in his heart,
so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a
cheerful giver (II Cor. 9:6-7).
THE LORDS SUPPER
The church is not authorized to raise funds by
any means other than free-will contributions. The church has no
authority to have rummage sales, car washes, or operate a business
to gain funds. Notice also that we are to give bountifully
(generously) and not sparingly.
This contribution is used in the work of the
church; that is, to do the work God has commanded the church to do.
The church must, therefore, use its treasury in a way that is
consistent with the guidelines and principles of the New Testament.
The treasury is not to be used to play ball and throw parties.
Its not for the recreation and entertainment of its members.
It will not be used to support works that oppose the body of
Christ. It will be used in the furtherance of the Gospel which
consists of: evangelism, edification and benevolence. Evangelism
teaches the lost, Edification builds up the saints and Benevolence
helps the needy.
Communion (the Lords supper) is an act of
worship that is enjoyed by every Christian. It is where one
communes with brethren and the Lord. Were mindful of the
Lords suffering and death on the cross. His sacrifice for
mankind is so wonderful that it defies comprehension.
The Lords supper is made up to two
elements: unleavened bread and fruit of the vine
(grape juice). The bread reminds us of the Lords body
and the fruit of the vine reminds us of the blood he shed in his
death. The example of the early church will not allow substitutions
of hot dog buns, potato chips, apple juice or soft drinks.
Paul explains the supper to the church at
Corinth. For I have received of the Lord that which also
I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which
he was betrayed took bread: And when he had given thanks, he brake
it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you:
this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also he took
the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament
in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of
me. For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do
shew the Lords death till he come. Wherefore whosoever shall
eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall
be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine
himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.
For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh
damnation to himself, not discerning the Lords body. For this
cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep
(I Cor. 11:23-30).
Christians around the world commune on the
Lords Day. No other day of the week will suffice. In Acts 20
and verse 7 we read, And upon the first day of the week,
when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto
them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until
Some try to incorporate the supper into a
wedding or funeral or perhaps some other occasion, but they do so
without Bible authority. How in the world can they attempt to
pervert this precious institution of our Lord and degrade this
authorized act of worship and make it mundane to fit our purpose.
What will be next?
The Lords supper is an essential part of
worship, but it is not any more important than other acts of
worship. We should not make sure we partake of the supper while
leaving out other essential parts.
Worship is vital to our salvation. We have been
called out of the world, added to the Lords precious body (the
church), and given the solemn privilege of worshiping God. It is
not to be taken lightly or cast aside as trivial. It is that time
when we totally focus upon our heavenly Father and give praise unto
His high and holy name. What a shame and embarrassment it is for
those who degrade it unto their own satisfaction. They forget whom
they worship and set themselves up as objects of praise. They will
find out someday what true worship is all about, but then it will
be too late.
Table of Contents
THE KIND OF PERSON GOD WANTS
James W. Boyd
God created man, giving him life, making him a
spirit, placing him in the perfectness and sinlessness of the
Garden of Eden. But man departed from the Lord by a violation of
Gods instructions concerning the fruit in the garden. By that
transgression, sin came into the world (Rom. 5:12), and all
have sinned (Rom. 3:23; 5:12). In sin, we are not the kind of
person God wants us to be. But we can be what God wants us to be.
Before that will be the case, we must have an earnest desire to be
what God wants us to be. It begins with the heart of man wanting to
please God and continues with man learning just what kind of person
God wants us to be. This lesson is centered on some of the
characteristics that God wants of us.
God wants a person to be a self-examiner, paying
close attention to self, lest we go astray. The warning to the
elders of Ephesus, Take heed unto yourselves...
(Acts 20:28), is useful for us all. We are sometimes so busy
watching the other fellow to note his mistakes that we are not
mindful enough of our own lives. We hear a sermon and make
application to somebody else rather than ourselves. It is like the
story of the time a preacher began his lesson by saying, Some
member of this church has been heard cursing last week. Then
he preached against the sin of the tongue. He knew one man was
guilty because he had heard him curse. But when the people were
leaving, several members told him that they were guilty, except the
one who he knew to be guilty, and that person said, You sure
did set them straight this morning, preacher. He did not apply
it to himself.
In eating the Lords supper, Paul said,
But let a man examine himself... (I Cor. 11:28).
Self-examination is emphasized in Romans 2:1-3. But we
are sure that the judgment of God is according to truth against
them which commit such things. And thinkest thou this, O man, that
judgest them which do such things, and doest the same, that thou
shalt escape the judgment of God? Or despisest thou the riches of
his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering, not knowing that
the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance.
In restoring those who have fallen, Paul taught,
Brethren, if any man be overtaken in a fault, ye which
are spiritual, restore such a one in the spirit of meekness,
considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted (Gal.
6:1). Christ said, And why beholdest thou the mote that
is in thy brothers eye but considereth not the beam that is in
thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out
the mote out of thine eye, and behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye and
then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy
brothers eye (Matt. 7:3-5).
God wants a busy person. When you want something to
be done you usually ask the busy man to do it. Why? Because the
busy man works. God wants people busy doing the work that must be
done. We might ask, How can we be busy in the work of the
Lord? This little poem is a good thought along this line.
Father, where shall I work today?
And my love flowed warm and free.
Then He pointed me out a humble spot,
and said, Tend that for me.
I answered quickly, Oh, no, not that!
Why, no one would ever see.
No matter how well my work was done;
Not that little place for me!
The word He spoke, it was not stern;
He answered me tenderly:
Ah, little one, search thine heart;
Art thou working for them or me?
Nazareth was a little place,
And so was Galilee.
We may be guilty of only wanting to work when
some prominence will come our way as a result. Prayer for the sick,
family, church, or nation may never be heard from you by others,
but God hears. Talking one-on-one to a neighbor about the soul may
not bring you acclaim, but it may save a soul. Being faithful in
worship, inviting others, visiting the needy, reading the
Scriptures, may not bring you brotherhood notoriety, but what of
that? You are busy doing what God wants done. Your day-to-day work,
whether it be in the home, on the job, or wherever, may seem
insignificant to those around you, but you will be doing what God
wants done. You are being busy in what is right. Too many of us
might be like the man who prayed for the Lord to use him, but only
in an advisory capacity. Many are willing to work when it is noted.
Many are willing to complain, criticize, or advise others. Too few
are willing to be busy workers.
God wants a person who will cooperate. After all,
the church is to be fitly joined together (Eph. 4:16),
and this implies cooperation by brethren. Unity, harmony, being
fitly joined together is a mark of Christianity.
ONE WHO LOVES
Nobody even likes that person who always has to
have his own way or will not cooperate with others. Have you ever
watched children at play and noticed what happens to the child that
insists everything must be as he calls it? Soon the others will
leave him alone. The same thing is true on the adult level. God is
not pleased with the uncooperative person who is unwilling to
sacrifice himself for the benefit and good of others.
In the New Testament we find Christian
fellowship, joint participation, brethren working hand-in-hand and
heart-in-heart together. This demands cooperation. It is only
because there is a cooperative spirit that we can have our Bible
study periods, our Gospel meetings, our worship services, our
efforts to preach the Gospel near and far. It is a sad spectacle
when someone exhibits the attitude that he does not have a
responsibility to others to be working alongside others for the
common good of the whole church. We all ought to look upon all
matters of the church as my work and not their
work. We must support it, do our part, cooperate with others
under the leadership. A lack of this attitude hinders the progress
of the cause of Christ.
God wants a person who both loves and hates. The
same ability that enables one to love, will also equip him to hate.
There are those things that God hates just as those things that God
loves. For God so loved the world... (John
3:16). But Solomon writes, These six things doth the Lord
hate... (Prov. 6:16). Those who love God, love what God
loves and hate what God hates.
ONE WHO HATES
God wants us to love His truth and to
demonstrate that love. To love God means that we will love His
truth enough to obey it. If ye love me, keep my
commandments (John 14:15). For this is the
love of God, that we keep His commandments, and his commandments
are not grievous. (I John 5:3). We show our love for the
truth by believing it, obeying it, living according to it,
defending it against attack, teaching it to all who will hear. By
doing this we are able to obey the two greatest commandments of
Matthew 22:37-39, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with
all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This
is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it,
Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.
God wants us to love one another. For
ye yourselves are taught of God to love one another (I
Thess. 4:9). And now abideth faith, hope, and charity,
these three, but the greatest of these is charity (I
Cor. 13:13). The word most often used in the original language of
the Bible to depict the love we are to have is the word
agape. The real meaning of the word is a
sacrificial love, a love that seeks the other persons highest
We show our love by being longsuffering, not
quick to condemn, but not hesitant to condemn when the soul is at
stake. Love is kind, pleasant, friendly, without envy. When we love
someone we are not interested in showing ourselves better than they
are to make us puffed up with self-righteousness. We are not
primarily interested in seeking our own interest to the neglect of
others. We will grieve over their errors just as we do over our
own. We will have a forgiving attitude toward them, supporting
them, encouraging them. Love will help us prevent hard feelings,
suspicion, verbal abuse, false accusations and insinuations to
discredit and destroy. There are many ways to display the love God
wants us to have in the heart. Follow after love
(I Cor. 14:1). It is that more excellent way of which Paul
speaks in First Corinthians 12:31.
God wants us to hate every false way. God hates sin
because sin destroys the sinner and God loves even the sinner. He
sent His Son to die on behalf of the sinner. We must hate sin and
love the sinner. We must learn to despise and abhor evil (Rom.
12:9). Those who look lightly upon such things as that which keep
one separated from God, have not yet learned to hate as God hates.
Sin ought to be so repulsive to us that we would abstain from the
appearance of evil (I Thess. 5:22). We have noted how people laugh
at the antics of one who is drunk. But may we impress, there is
nothing funny about sin, whether it be drunkenness, or any other
God wants us to be persons who are obedient. When
God speaks, man is to hear and heed. At the time of the
disobedience of Saul, the first king of Israel, Samuel taught,
Behold, to obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than
the fat of rams (I Samuel 15:22). Christ is the author
of salvation, and in this truth we rejoice. But Hebrews 5:9 teaches
that He is the author of salvation to them that OBEY Him.
Is it possible that when we read the will of God
that we do not weigh it and measure it as we ought, failing to see
what is required of us, and considering the evidence to decide to
obey? Obedience is to do what God says because God has said it. We
do not even have to understand why God has said something before we
recognize we must submit to it. We are to try to understand His
will. But when we have faith in God as God wants, when we love the
truth as He wants us to love it, we will be found trying to learn
it, and determined to be obedient because this is what He wants.
2720 S Chancery St.
McMinnville, TN 37110
Table of Contents
PREACHING WHAT THE LORD
LAYS ON YOUR HEART
What message should preachers preach? Many of our
denominational friends would say, Just preach whatever the
Lord lays on your heart. Is that what the Bible says?
If one claims that he preaches what the
Lord lays on his heart, how does he know that it is the Lord
and not Satan that lays it on his heart? How does he go
about proving that it was more than his own personal gut feeling?
There is no way that a person living today could ever prove that
his decision to preach on a certain topic, or to deliver a lesson
in a certain way, came directly from the Lord! One man that called
himself a former youth pastor emphasized to me that a preacher just
needs to preach whatever the Lord lays on his heart. Then, in the
next breath he spoke of his support for women preachers in public
assemblies, the use of mechanical instruments of music in Christian
worship, and other unbiblical concepts. This is, as we say,
par for the course. Why? Because those that advocate
preaching what the Lord lays on your heart, sooner or
later always get around to propagating unscriptural messages,
showing that, alas, their message was not something that the Lord
laid on their heart after all. Folks, if the message that they
speak is not scriptural, then guess what? It did not come from the
Lord, and people ought to stop accusing Him of being the source of
their self-imagined doctrines!
Have you ever read in your Bible that the Lord
told Christians they should teach or preach whatever He would
lay on their heart? Someone might say, No, not in those
exact words, but surely you would agree that there were inspired
preachers. Yes, and the key word here is were, not
are. There WERE inspired preachers, but there ARE NONE
alive today. Inspired preachers were those who received Gods
revelation in a miraculous way, being directly led by the Holy
Spirit to speak forth Gods message. For instance, we read in
Matthew 10:18-20 that Jesus told His apostles, And ye
shall be brought before governors and kings for my sake, for a
testimony against them and the Gentiles. But when they deliver you
up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be
given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. For it is not ye
that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in
you. That was a promise Jesus made to His apostles, not
to people living in the 21st century. Later, Jesus promised the
apostles that the Holy Spirit would guide them into all truth and
would cause them to remember all that Jesus had spoken to them
(John 16:13; 14:26). Again, those were special promises for the
apostles, not you and me.
We further read in the New Testament that the
mystery of God, which is the salvation of Jews and
Gentiles through Jesus, through the Gospel, and in the church, was
revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the
Spirit (Eph. 3:4,5). The Holy Spirit miraculously revealed it
to the apostles and first century prophets and they preached it to
others. Those men were, indeed, inspired preachers.
Observe this about inspired preachers. In the
first century, inspired preachers also received from God the power
to perform signs or miracles. What was the purpose of such signs?
To confirm the message they preached (Mark 16:20; Heb. 2:3,4). In
other words, inspired men preached the Gospel of God, and as they
did so, by the Holy Spirits power, they performed miracles to
prove that what they were saying was from God, and thus it was true
and should be accepted as authentic and authoritative.
Miracles were a temporary phenomena that ended
in the first century. Thus, today there are no preachers that are
performing genuine miracles. The Holy Spirits direct guiding
of preachers was also a temporary phenomena that came to an end in
the first century. The Spirit now leads men through His truth, the
word of God (John 16:13). Instead of having inspired preachers, we
now have uninspired men that are obligated to preach the Holy
What is it that preachers are supposed to
preach? Not their own feelings, not their personal hunches, not
their private preferences, and certainly not what they surmise to
be the Lord laying it on their heart. No, friends, true
Gospel preachers preach the word (II Tim. 4:2), or as
Jesus said, they preach the gospel (Mark 16:15).
So, you dont think that preachers
should preach with emotion? Preachers ought to energetically
and enthusiastically proclaim the Lords Gospel. They, like the
apostle Paul, should feel, Woe is unto me, if I preach
not the gospel! (I Cor. 9:16). But that is a far cry
from saying that they ought to claim that the Lord laid it on
their heart. Preaching WITH feeling is not the same as
preaching which is totally BASED on feelings or pure emotionalism.
For one to claim that he preaches what the Lord lays on his
heart simply means that he is basing his message on his own
personal speculation and what he feels is right. Jesus did not say,
Go and preach whatever you feel in your heart. The Master
said to preach the gospel. That should settle the matter
for those that want to please Him.
4865 Bates Pike SE
Cleveland, TN 37323
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Throughout the ages God has required that man
repent. Before God forgives, man must repent. John the baptizer
preached repentance, ...Repent ye: for the kingdom of
heaven is at hand (Matt. 3:2). Jesus preached
repentance, I tell you, Nay: but, except ye repent, ye
shall all likewise perish (Luke 13:3). The apostles
preached repentance. Paul said, And the times of this
ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to
repent (Acts 17:30). The apostle Peter taught,
The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men
count slackness; but is longsuffering to usward, not willing that
any should perish, but that all should come to repentance
(II Peter 3:9).
THE NEED FOR REPENTANCE IS EQUAL TO THE NEED FOR BAPTISM
Perhaps we sometimes emphasize baptism to the
point of excluding proper teaching concerning repentance. It is
necessary to place as much emphasis upon the need to repent as we
place upon the need to be baptized for remission of sins, because
without either, no mans sins are remitted.
Peter, in his great sermon on the day of Pentecost,
said, ...Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the
name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall
receive the gift of the Holy Ghost (Acts 2:38). We have
often expressed the coordinate conjunction and in order
to express the importance of baptism to the remission of sins. And,
baptism IS just as necessary as repentance. But how about turning
this argument around? Repentance IS just as necessary as baptism.
It seems to have been the case (in some situations) that in order
to get someone to understand the necessity of baptism, we might
have left off the same emphasis upon repentance. This will cause a
response that nearly guarantees the quick falling away of the one
just converted. Again, the need for repentance is as important
(equal to) the need for baptism Repent and be
Baptized (Acts 3:38). The coordinate conjunction AND
means each side carries EQUAL weight.
THE NEED FOR BAPTISM IS ONCE,
BUT THE NEED FOR REPENTANCE IS CONTINUAL
We take note of what the apostle John said,
But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have
fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son
cleanseth us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we
deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our
sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to
cleanse us from all unrighteousness (I John 1:7-9).
Continuing faithful to God requires a faithful walk (v.7). However,
man is occasioned to stumble in sin (v.8). The blood of Jesus is
always available to cleanse us from all unrighteousness (v.9).
However, there is/are conditions. One must repent of and confess
his sins (v.9). One might quickly argue that the term
repent is not found in this verse. It is not stated, but
necessarily understood, because confession of sin without
repentance of sin accomplishes nothing. Peter told Simon the
sorcerer to, Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and
pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven
thee (Acts 8:22).
WHAT IS REPENTANCE?
Repentance is NOT simply sorrow for sin.
Many mistakenly think this is what repentance is about. It is true
that there can be no repentance without being sorry for our sins;
but, one can be sorry about their sins for a long time and still
not repent of their sins. In I Corinthians 7:10 we find that there
are two kinds of sorrow: For godly sorrow worketh
repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of
the world worketh death. There is godly sorrow and
worldly sorrow. Mankind must take notice that it is only godly
sorrow that works or brings man to genuine repentance.
Just being sorry (worldly sorrow) does not bring about forgiveness
of sins, but will cause a man to die in his sins.
Repentance is a changing of wills, a changing
of attitude, a changing of ways. It requires the leaving off of the
sins for which one confesses and ask forgiveness.
Without faithful living, one will not receive
the crown of eternal life (Rev. 2:10). Repentance is a necessary
part of that faithful walk before God.
120 Stegall Rd.
Shady Valley, TN 37688
Table of Contents
The Weaver church of Christ, which is a SOUND congregation of
about 55 Christians in the friendly small town of Weaver (near
Anniston, Alabama) is looking for a minister. If interested, please
call Ralph Hammett at 256-435-4884 for more information; and send
resumes to: Weaver church of Christ, c/o Ralph Hammett, P.O. Box
191, Jacksonville, AL 36265 ...Ralph Hammett,
Jacksonville, AL. Read with interest and disappointment
at Harding for using Joe Beam. Your closing bit about the Scottish
Rite Masons giving to Harding was a cheap, cheap shot and you know
it. You mean to tell me you wouldnt take money from the Devil
to further good works? Or do you practice closed
contribution? ...Sherrill Bennett, Columbus, MS.
[NOTE: It is a matter of fellowship that is in question
here. The Lords church/people have no association with the
unfruitful works of darkness (Eph. 5:11). We are commanded to
reprove them, not join hands with them. We must not make it seem as
though we are in agreement with them. þ-editor] We do not wish
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