Primitive Baptist Topics

“DIE” NOT “DIED”

“DIE” NOT “DIED”
By Elder David P. Bridgman (Deceased)

   “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive,” 1Co 15:22. All of our church life, we have heard the above text used by various ministers and writers to teach the same lesson that is taught in Ro 5:12-18, and elsewhere. But if you, my dear brother, will please read this text carefully, you will see that it does not say, “Died”, but rather says, “Die.” Of course if you just stop and look at it, you can readily see that this is present tense and not past tense. This verse is often used to prove the truth; but this is not the proper Scripture to prove what Romans, chapter five proves. The above text teaches that, with no exceptions, mortal man (all men) die.

   And we do not have to reach many years of age in this life to learn that Adam does die. They are dying each and every day all throughout the entire world, and will as long as Adam is being born into the world. Now the writer, to wit, Paul, is here teaching us, that as surely as Adam dies, then just that surely all that are in Christ shall be made alive, shall live again, shall be resurrected. No doubt about it at all. Sad as it may seem, there has been and still are some who do not believe in the resurrection of the dead. But Paul is here teaching the certainty that all Christ died for will be raised from the dead, and that indeed is a most glorious thought. A most wonderful feeling indeed, not only for us, for our own body to be raised to live forever and forever, but likewise for the bodies of our dear precious loved ones. That means so very much to us, and not only so, but for our dear precious brethren and sisters in Christ to all be raised with him to live forevermore.

   Dear brethren, it is, of course, good to teach that Adam died in the fall in the garden, as that is what the Scriptures teach and it needs teaching, when God moves us to do so. But, let’s not use the above text to try to prove it, but use those scriptures that do prove it to do so. And in so doing, we will not confuse anyone in our teaching. Somehow I hesitated to write these few lines this time for fear someone might think I feel smart for something, and might get the wrong impression of why I am writing. But it is only for the good of the cause that I have done thus. Yours in his never ending love.

   Elder David P. Bridgman
   Montgomery, AL
(From “The Christian Pathway”, March, 1980)

“I LOVE THY KINGDOM LORD”

“I LOVE THY KINGDOM LORD”

The above is the title of a song in the old Daily hymn book, and sung by our people in most, if not all parts of our land, and is very familiar to all Primitive Baptists. When we sing it, the question arises in my mind, “Do I love thy kingdom, Lord, the house of thine abode, the church our blessed Redeemer saved with His own precious blood?” Do I, by my life, my actions, and my character prove to those about me that I am telling the truth, when I sing this song?

   Thoughts of this kind have caused me to dampen my pillow with tears when all about me were asleep. Am I willing to sacrifice for the well-being of Zion, and brethren in a general way, to the extent that the Lord of glory has blessed me? If I am, I will sacrifice till it hurts.

   David said, “O Lord our God, all this store that we have prepared to build thee an house for thine holy name cometh of thine hand, and all is thine own.”—1Ch 29:16. And it is also true with us today that all we possess comes from the Lord and belongs to Him, so why should we not be willing and even glad to spend and be spent in His service?

   I have had many tell me, “Oh, I love the old church; yes, I love her as much as any one,” but when some effort is required, some small sacrifice needed, they will then tell you that they do not feel well or that they are too tired. All too often they are on hand only when some visiting preacher is to be present who is known as a “big preacher.” Sometimes it seems as if some of our people did not join the church at all, but joined the preacher and try in every way they can to hinder and interfere with any and everything that would be a credit to anyone else.

   I recall to mind part of a poem I learned while in the primary grade of school, about two little girls in the same house. A few lines of which fit so well into church life in some way or other everywhere we may go. I will give a few lines of it here:

 I love you, Mother, said little Nell,
 I love you better than tongue can tell;
 But she teased and pouted full half the day,
 Till her Mother rejoiced when she went to
     play.
 
 I love you, Mother, said little Fan,
 Today I’ll help you all I can;
 So stepping softly, she took the broom,
 She swept the floor and dusted the room.
 Happy and cheerful all day was she,
 Helpful and useful as a child could be.

 I love you, Mother, again they said,
 Two little children going to bed;
 How do you think the Mother guessed
 Which of the children loved her best?

   This poem is not complete, but gives a comparison of children in everyday life, and is also a very favorable comparison of church life in many instances.

   One of our highly esteemed ministers said not long ago that the church is the greatest Mother that God ever blessed the children of man with. This is true, and we all should love her as did little Fan and be all the help we can, and that will never be too much.

   Let us take heed unto self and cultivate that love which God hath given us for His church.

   I fear that too many of us think that Paul’s language to Timothy in which he says, “Take heed unto thyself and unto the doctrine; continue in them; for in doing this, thou shalt both save thyself, and them that hear thee” (1Ti 4:16) is directed only to the ministry; but it will fit into the life of the children of God, whatever their position in life may be. Let us pray that we may “Love thy kingdom, Lord,” in the real way.

   Submitted in love to all the saints of God.
   Earl S. Smith
   Evansville, Ind.
(From “The Messenger of Zion”, July 15, 1937)

“THE LORD LED ME”

“THE LORD LED ME”
 By Jonathan Wise
Pontotoc, Mississippi

   “And the man bowed down his head, and worshipped the Lord. And he said, Blessed be the Lord God of my master Abraham, who hath not left destitute my master of his mercy and his truth: I being in the way, the Lord led me to the house of my master’s brethren.” (Ge 24:26-27)

   These words were spoken by Abraham’s eldest servant after the Lord had mercifully answered his prayer in the matter of finding a bride for Isaac. Abraham, being old and not knowing how much longer he had to live, had sent this unnamed man to his family’s homeland to pick out an acceptable woman for his promised son to wed. Given clear instructions not to take a wife from among the pagan Canaanites, this servant does a very wise thing in taking the situation before Almighty God in prayer when he arrives at a well outside the Mesopotamian city of Nahor. He prays to the Lord that the woman whom He desired for Isaac to marry reveal herself by offering both him and his camels a drink of water (Ge 24:12-14). Incredibly, before he is even finished speaking Rebekah arrives on the scene and does exactly what he had asked of God. Realizing this to be the providential working of the Lord, the servant bows and utters this beautiful verse that still is applicable to the followers of Christ today.

   One of the themes you hear most often in the Christian world today is “following God’s will.” I will agree that this is absolutely a critical subject, as we should all seek to please the Lord in everything we do. However, this is an area in which God’s word is increasingly intertwined with secular philosophy under the guise of biblical truth. Many sincere people have fallen prey to the so-called “prosperity gospel” that portrays discipleship as being tied to financial or career success. According to these teachings, the Lord’s will is for you to be successful, and someone who isn’t obviously is not serving the Lord as he or she should. My friends, this is totally contrary to scripture. God has not promised His children any more than the material things that they stand in need of, such as food, shelter, and clothing. In fact, for the devoted follower of the Lord Jesus these things should not be a source of anxiety or worry as they are promised to us. As Jesus said in His sermon on the mount: “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Mt 6:33).

   God certainly sometimes blesses His disciples with a significant degree of success in the secular realm, for which He should be given all the glory. However, when the scriptures speak of God’s will it is generally in the context of His desire for us to be obedient to His commandments and serve him. Paul told the church at Thessalonica, “For this is the will of God, even your sanctification, that ye should abstain from fornication.” (1Th 4:3). Just a chapter later he would admonish them to give thanks in every thing “for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” (1Th 5:18). As a final example, Peter writes: “For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men.” (1Pe 2:15).

   The Lord’s primary will is for His children to make serving Him the foremost priority in their lives. When your treasure is His kingdom (Mt 5:19-21), you will be able to live a life of contentment and obedience that glorifies His holy name. However, in this world in which we live we are all faced with a multitude of decisions that are not explicitly spelled out in God’s word. Scripture doesn’t name all who are going to be called into the ministry or where they are to labor. It does not tell one what to do for a living, where to go to college, or who to marry. So, how do we know what the Lord’s will for us is in these type areas, which are all admittedly important as we live in the world? First and foremost, it is important to remember the Lord will not lead you in a way contrary to His word. Therefore, we should study what the scripture has to say about whatever problem or situation we are dealing with. For example, God doesn’t tell us exactly who to marry, but He lays out some fundamental principles to follow, such as not being “unequally yoked together with unbelievers” (2Co 6:14). Our career paths are not specified, but we are told that “whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God” (1Co 10:31). Therefore, a job that asks someone to practice ungodly behavior would be contrary to the will of God.

   With these parameters in mind, God’s children should fervently pray to the Lord to lead them and show them what His will is in whatever situation they might be facing, just as Abraham’s servant did when he traveled into a far country seeking the right woman for His master’s son. You might not get an answer immediately, but if you are following a path pleasing unto the Lord He will providentially open doors to reveal that to you, or he might close doors to chart you on a different course. Keep in mind things might not be a walk in the park. They seldom are for the faithful followers of Christ. God has promised his obedient child that He will “direct thy paths” (Pr 3:5-6), not that he would make them easy or smooth. Abraham’s servant sought the counsel and guidance of God in his journey, and the Lord answered his petitions by allowing him to cross paths with Isaac’s future bride. The Psalmist writes, “I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye.” (Ps 32:8). The Lord has promised to teach us the way He would have us to go, and the best way to obtain this instruction is obey him and draw nigh unto Him. The “way” that Abraham’s servant describes is primarily the way of obedience to God and seeking His guidance in his journey. In my short life I can look back and see Lord’s providential hand guiding my life, both opening and closing doors that helped me arrive at where I am today. I believe the same could be said for almost anyone reading this. I’ve never heard of anyone who lamented the fact that they made God’s kingdom a priority in his or her life, because the Lord is always faithful to his promise and guides us with his eye. May we all continue to put the Lord’s service first so that we can also boldly exclaim, “I being in the way, the Lord led me.”

3 Days and 3 Nights

30 BOOKS

30 BOOKS

   There are 30 books of the Bible in the following paragraph. Can you find them?

   This is a most remarkable puzzle.  It was found by a gentleman in an airplane seat pocket on a flight from Los Angeles to Honolulu keeping him occupied for hours.  He enjoyed it so much he passed it on to some friends.  One friend from Illinois worked on it while fishing from his john boat.  Another friend studied it while playing the banjo. Elaine Taylor, a columnist friend, was so intrigued by it she mentioned it in her weekly newspaper column.  Another friend judges the job of solving the puzzle so involving, she brews a cup of tea to help her nerves. There are some names that are really easy to spot. That's a fact. Some people, however, will soon find themselves in a jam, especially since the book names are not necessarily capitalized. Truthfully, from answers we get, we are forced to admit it usually takes a minister or scholar to see some of them at the worst.  Research has shown that something in our genes is responsible for the difficulty we have in seeing the books in this paragraph. During a recent fund raising event, which featured this puzzle, the Alpha Delta Phi lemonade booth set a new sales record. The local paper, The Chronicle, surveyed over 200 patrons who reported this puzzle was one of the most difficult they had ever seen.  As Daniel Hummana humbly puts it, "the books are all right there in plain view hidden from sight." Those able to find all of them will hear great lamentations from those who have to be shown. One revelation that may help is that books like Timothy and Samuel may occur without their numbers.  Also, keep in mind, that punctuation and spaces in the middle are normal. A chipper attitude will help you compete really well against those who claim to know the answers. Remember, there is no need for a mad exodus, there really are 30 books of the Bible lurking somewhere in this paragraph waiting to be found.

70 Weeks of Daniel Timeline

A BEAUTIFUL ANECDOTE

A BEAUTIFUL ANECDOTE

A happier illustration of the wonderful character of the Bible, and the facility with which even a child may answer by it the greatest questions and solve the sublimest of mysteries, was perhaps never given than at an examination of a deaf and dumb institution some years ago in London.

A little boy was asked in writing, "Who made the world?" He took the chalk and wrote underneath the question, "In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth."

The clergyman then inquired in a similar manner, "Why did Jesus Christ come into the world?" A smile of delight and gratitude rested on the countenance of the little fellow as he wrote: "This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners."

A third was then proposed, evidently adapted to call the most powerful feelings into exercise: "Why were you born deaf and dumb, when I can hear and speak?"
"Never," said and eye witness, "shall I forget the resignation which sat upon his countenance as he took the chalk and wrote:" 'Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in thy sight.'"

---Primitive Monitor
January 1919

A BRIEF SYNOPSIS OF THE FAITH

A BRIEF SYNOPSIS OF THE FAITH

They that are Christ's were given unto Him, chosen in Him before the foundation of the world, and blessed in Him with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places. They are loved in Christ by Jehovah the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost, with an everlasting love, and they are predestinated unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ unto the Father.

In the fullness of time Christ redeemed them from their sins, ransomed them from the curse of the law by His precious atoning, cleansing blood. They are all called by grace unto the fellowship of God's dear Son, and He is their Head and Husband, their immortal Friend. Christ is formed in their hearts the hope of glory, and they die in faith, with this blessed hope in their death, that their souls, in the dissolution of the earthly house of this tabernacle, will depart to be with Christ in paradise; and their bodies in death return to the dust, from whence they were taken in creation, to be raised again at the last day, spiritual, immortal, and glorious, fashioned like unto the glorious body of our precious Saviour, our Lord Jesus Christ.

Then, in our whole spirit and soul and body, we shall be like Him, for we shall see Him as He is, and we shall appear with Him in glory, and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

---Elder Frederick W. Keene
The Gospel Messenger, 1917

A CHRISTIAN BENEDICTION

Heb 13:20-25

70

 

This magnificient epistle concludes with a benediction {Heb 13:20-21} and a postscript. {Heb 13:22-25} The benediction is marvellously comprehensive, encapsulating the major themes of Hebrews in one grand prayer. The rich redemptive background of Heb 13:20 reminds us of dominant themes such as the One who lives forever, {Heb 7:24} the Superiority of Christ (who is not only our “Great”High Priest but also the "Great" Shepherd of the Sheep), and his sacrificial merit which is the basis of the believer’s relationship with God ("the blood of the everlasting covenant"). Heb 13:21, likewise, recapitulates the message of spiritual maturity {Heb 6:1}ff, and the importance of "doing God’s will" cf Heb 10:36. All in all, this prayer is a fitting summary to the book.

 

The Solid Premise {Heb 13:20}

 

The writer closes his “word of exhortation”to the Hebrews by praying for them. He has warned them, reasoned with them, encouraged them, and instructed them. Now he prays for them. His concern is that they would be faithful to Jesus Christ, in spite of the tremendous pressure they faced.

 

To whom does he intercede on their behalf? “The God of Peace.” Without question, peace was something they desperately wanted. They were distraught, distracted, and discouraged. This reference to God as the God of peace is intended to remind them of the source of their peace. More than that, it reminds them that peace was already theirs through the Lord Jesus. Peace had already been established for them through the blood of Christ’s cross, {Col 1:20} a sacrifice the writer terms “the blood of the everlasting covenant”.Compare Zec 9:11; Eze 37:26; Isa 55:3; Jer 31:31ff

 

How could they be assured that reconciliation had been made? Through the resurrection of Christ, the Great Shepherd of the sheep. The resurrection is the proof of reconciliation. {Ro 4:25; 1Co 15} As the Good Shepherd, Jesus died for his sheep. As the Great Shepherd, He lives to protect and nurture them now. He is the same yesterday, today and forever! This rich redemptive background is the basis of his prayer.

 

The Specific Petition {Heb 13:21}

 

What is his request? Namely, that God, through the risen Lord Jesus, would equip them to obey Him: “... make you perfect in every good work to do His will...” The phrase “make you perfect”is the Greek word katartidzo( See SGreek 2675. καταρτιζω katartizo). To a physician, katartidzo meant “to set a broken bone.” To a fisherman, it meant “to mend a broken net.” To a soldier, it meant “to prepare an army for battle.”

 

This is a prayer for Divine enablement, for Heavenly help, for God’s power to operate in the lives of the Hebrews. Only in the strength of the Holy Spirit can any believer be faithful to the Lord Jesus. How does God strengthen the Christian? By “working in”him. God’s work for us is salvation. God’s work through us is service. But God’s work in us is sanctification. What a comfort to know that God is at work in our lives and in our hearts! {Php 2:12-13} Divine strength in the inward man is the Christian’s greatest need. {Ps 138:3}

 

Why does God work in us to equip us? So that we may “do His will.” It’s not enough to merely know the will of God, or to desire the will of God. We must obey and perform the will of God. As this letter concludes, the Hebrews should have no doubt concerning God’s will for their situation. What was God’s desire toward them? That they would hold the line and commit themselves to a life of faith and obedience to their Risen and Reigning Savior and Lord. Now that they have regained that focus, the author reminds them that God would help them to do it.

 

Why is obedience to God’s will so important? So that we may “please”Him cf. Heb 11:6; 13:16. The Christian’s ambition in life is to do that which is “well-pleasing in His sight.”

 

“ Grace be with you all. Amen.”  {Heb 13:25}

A CORN OF WHEAT (1943)

A CORN OF WHEAT (1943)
(By Elder John Clark, in Zion's Advocate, March 1, 1871)

   Our Divine Redeemer not only spake in parables to the people, because it was given to His disciples to know the mystery of the kingdom, but drew upon many things in nature by which to illustrate and explain the great work which He came into the world to accomplish. In the verse, "Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit," He designed to show that as it is in the planting of wheat, the grain that is deposited in the earth dies, but from it springs the shoot, the blade, the ear, then the full corn in the ear, so in His death and resurrection. There are some seeds that spring up when they vegetate and do not die; but not so with the corn of wheat, which is used by our Lord to show the nature of His work, and, also, because it is of more value than any other grain. There is more nutriment in it, and therefore, it is more excellent than any other; so Christ is the Chief among ten thousand, and the one altogether lovely. He is among the sons—the children of men—as the apple tree is among the trees of the wood.

   It is said that a corn of wheat when deposited in moist soil and with a warm climate, will vegetate in three days, as Christ was three days and nights in the heart of the earth. "Except it die it abideth alone." The single grain. So if Christ had not died, He would have been alone, so far as any sinners of Adam's posterity are concerned, but as He died He brings forth much fruit. He redeems an innumerable company, out of every nation, kindred, tongue and people under heaven.

   The wheat must be threshed, ground, sifted, kneaded and baked before it is fit for use; and so Christ is the bread of life, whereof if a man eats, he shall never hunger, never die. He was the anti-typical manna, the bread of God that came down from heaven. The corn of wheat that fell into the ground, that died, and hath brought forth much fruit—an abundant harvest. He is our Passover; was sacrificed for us; killed; roasted whole, and whose precious blood sprinkled upon the door posts is a peaceful sign. The destroying angel has orders to pass over all those where that peaceful sign, the blood of the covenant, is seen. The corn of wheat that fell into the earth and died is now seen in the harvest, in the full corn in the ear, and in an abundant increase.

His honor and His breath
Were taken both away;
Join'd with the wicked in His death,
And made as vile as they.

But God shall raise His head
O'er all the sons of men,
And make Him see a numerous seed
To recompense His pain.
(From “For The Poor”, 1943)

A DAY

A DAY

What does it take to make a day?
A lot of love along the way:
It takes a morning and a noon,
A father’s voice, a mother’s croon;
It takes some task to challenge all
The powers that a man may call
His own; the powers of mind and limb;
A whispered word of love; a hymn
Of hope—a comrade’s cheer—
A baby’s laughter and a tear;
It takes a dream, a hope, a cry
Of need from some soul passing by;
A sense of brotherhood and love;
A purpose sent from God above;
It takes a sunset in the sky,
The stars of night, the winds that sigh;
It takes a breath of scented air,
A mother’s kiss, a baby’s prayer.
That is what it takes to make a day:
A lot of love along the way.


   William L. Stidger
(From “Poems That Touch The Heart”)

A FATHER

A FATHER

His shoulders are a little bent,
His youthful force a trifle spent,
But he's the finest man I know,
With heart of gold and hair of snow.

He's seldom cross and never mean;
He's always been so good and clean;
I only hope I'll always be
As kind to him as he's to me.

Sometimes he's tired and seems forlorn,
His happy face is lined and worn;
Yet he can smile when things are bad:
That's why I like my gray-haired dad.

He doesn't ask the world for much--
Just comfort, friendliness, and such;
But from the things I've heard him say,
I know it's up to me to pay.

For all the deeds he's done for me
Since I sat rocking on his knee;
Oh, not in dollars, dimes, or cents--
That's not a father's recompense;

Nor does he worship wealth and fame--
He'd have me honor Jesus' name.
    --Author Unknown

A FEW VERY GOOD POINTS

A FEW VERY GOOD POINTS

In The Gospel Messenger of April 1900, Elder L. I. Bodenheimer, of North Carolina, made some very excellent points that I here pass along for your consideration, r.e.h.

"He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?"
All admit, I presume, that God the Father did actually deliver up His Son just as Ro 8:32 affirms. But if it could be proven, as some contend, that the Father was in justice bound to the world, or by His own law, to make this delivery, then it would be made clear that He owed the world a debt, and that the delivery of His Son was not a gift to the world, nor an act of mercy, but was the payment of a debt, and was only an act of justice. And if there were any redemption in it, it was the Son redeeming His Father from His obligations to the world or to His own law.

Again, according to that doctrine, if God is bound to allow every man a chance to be saved, as the religious world argues, then that allowance is not a gift of grace and mercy, but is the result of the supposed 'bond' that obliges Him so to do.

Moreover, if the delivery of His Son was made in consideration of the sinner's obedience or works of righteousness which he had done or might do, then it could not have been "for his offenses" as the text says it is.

Furthermore, if the Father delivered up His Son, and with Him gives all things else freely, in order to induce the sinner to throw down his arms of rebellion and be at peace with God, then it is clear that such a peace is not of conquest but is of compromise and purchase, and leaves the rebel sinner less humiliated than God himself.

A FULL TIME MINISTER?

A FULL TIME MINISTER?
By Elder Robert Harlan (Deceased)

   I would not object to a minister spending every hour of every day and every night in the service of the Lord for the whole world, for how can I judge the sweet spirit speaking to the hearts of others? If a minister’s full time is called for, and if he feel the drawing of loving kindness toward them, then I am compelled to say, by all means go, and God bless you in every attempt you make in His great and good name. But all who are not willing to work at all when their time is not called for, I would not dare to call them enemies but as a beloved brother I would exhort that with quietness they work, and eat their own bread. And so it goes, on and on. Even as Paul further states: Even unto this present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwelling place; and labor, working with our own hands: being reviled we bless; being persecuted we suffer it: being defamed we intreat. We are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day. I write not these things to shame you, but as my beloved sons I warn you. For though ye have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet have ye not many fathers: For in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel. Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers of me. For this cause have I sent unto you Timotheus, who is my beloved son, and faithful in the Lord, who shall bring you into remembrance of my ways which are in Christ, as I teach everywhere in every church. I wonder if Paul’s ways would not be a good thing to bring to the remembrance of every church in every place today. Does not Paul very clearly tell how we should be minded to preach the gospel? Does he not say that while the apostles worked with their own hands that they were reviled (assailed with contemptuous or disgraceful, or shameful language) we bless? Does he not say that this was his way? Does he not say his way was in Christ? If any should be other wise minded would his way also be in Christ? Did he not say the apostles were persecuted and suffer it? Was he teaching that it was wrong for a minister to work at all with his hands when he said: Be ye followers of me?

   Now I find this same apostle talking to those preachers of Ephesus just before he left them, never to see them any more in this life, and hear him saying: And now brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of his grace, which is able to build you up, and to give you an inheritance among all them that are sanctified. I wonder what he was trying to tell those preachers here? Evidently he was giving something to think about, and if they observed it and practiced it, then it was sure to give them an inheritance among all that are sanctified, what was it? Surely Paul was telling them how to conduct themselves so they would always have a part among those whom God calls and sets apart to enjoy the blessings of His people. And so he commends the preachers at Ephesus to God, and once again related the pattern of his life in the ministry to them by saying: I have coveted no man’s silver, or gold, or apparel. Ye yourselves know that these hands have ministered unto my necessities, and to them that were with me. I have shown you all things how that so laboring ye ought to support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he said: It is more blessed to give than to receive. And when he had thus spoken, he kneeled down, and prayed with them all. Read Ac 20:25-36.

   Now, I want to know for sure if I am wrong to labour with my own hands when I am not sent by the Spirit to preach to any certain place? And am I so wrong when I have desire to help others whom I deem to be weak?

   Again, I say I cannot but think it good to be able to spend ones full time in the service of the Lord, and I cannot but think it is a wonderful blessing indeed for a man to be possessed with the continual voice of the Lord saying, GO—Go—Go! Neither can I but think that such a man will find happiness all the way if he but go without regard to his own life as our Lord has told him to do, and preach the gospel, rather than taxation, for it seems to be God’s purpose that they who preach the gospel should also live of the gospel. It seems God would have to fail if such a man did not receive the things He has promised. Therefore I wonder if it would not be well to examine the man if he begins to complain about not being cared for as he ought. Oh how could I ever see the fruits of love in this?

   I must preach a free gospel as Paul did: in sweet hope that the end, and my reward for preaching the gospel will be the good sight of the people that I have tried to teach, loving each other in the freedom of perfect love where there is no regard for their own lives, but the lives of others. I fail to see how this goal can be gained by putting walls and barriers. Now, I am prone to think one must be free from all concern for themselves before they will be free to love others to perfection.

(From “Preaching the Gospel Without Charge” by
Elder Robert Harlan)

A GOSPEL OF CONDEMNATION

A GOSPEL OF CONDEMNATION

Arminianism teaches that God could not justly condemn anyone until He has made provision for their escape, giving them a "chance" to be saved, which He does by the death of Christ, the proclamation of the gospel, etc. If this be true, in all God does to that end He manifests no grace toward sinners but simply does that which justice requires of Him. In which case the gift of His only begotten Son to suffer the shameful death of the cross was a matter of justice and not of mercy. Not only so, but the coming of the Son of God has been a curse instead of a blessing. For according to this theory God could not have justly condemned anyone had Christ not been given, for since God is just, none would have been condemned. But as untold millions have failed to accept the so-called "offered salvation," and hence have been condemned, the gospel of God has been the gospel of condemnation and not the gospel of salvation.

---Elder William H. Crouse
Zion's Advocate, 1903

A GREATER THAN MOSES

Heb 3

71

 

What is the writer’s purpose in Hebrews? He is concerned to demonstrate the superior value of the Christian faith to the Jew’s religion. Under the relentless pressure of persecution, the Hebrew Christians to whom he writes are considering a return to Judaism. Such a return, the writer argues, would constitute the abandoning of the superior for the inferior, the substitution of the shadow for the substance.

 

The Jews greatly valued their religion because it had been given through eminent prophets like Samuel, Elijah, and Daniel and through the medium of angels. The Christian faith, however, was superior to the Jewish religion because it came directly from the Son of God, One who is superior to prophets and angels. The Jews, furthermore, highly esteemed Moses, a man who spoke “face to face with God”and was sent as God’s special messenger to the fathers. Through Moses, God delivered the people from Egypt, gave the Law, and led them through the wilderness. He was God’s “apostle”[i.e. one who is sent on a special mission], God’s “prophet,” {De 18:15} and God’s mediator [the word “priest”in Heb 3:1 (pontifex) means “bridge builder”or “mediator”].But Christianity has the advantage over the Jew’s religion because the Lord Jesus Christ is superior to Moses. In fact, He is our “Moses,” our prophet and mediator, as Moses himself predicted:

 

I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth, and he shall speak unto them all that I command him. And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him.” {De 18:18-19}

 

Jesus is, then, the fulfillment of this prophecy. He is superior to Moses in terms of the fact that Moses was God’s servant but Jesus is God’s Son. The author of the Christian religion, then, is preferable to Moses. He is the builder of the “house of God;” Moses was merely a part of that “house.” The danger of apostasy from the Christian faith, then, is more grave than the consequences of disobedience to Moses. The question inherent in these words is sobering: “Are you in God’s household? Are you a part of his dwelling place among men?” The writer answers that participation in “God’s house”is conditional on “holding fast the confidence and the rejoicing of the hope firm unto the end.”  {Heb 3:6}

 

What exactly is he saying? He is saying: “You claim that Moses is your leader? Very well, then. Moses was faithful to God. He held fast the revelation that God gave to him. That revelation pointed forward to a greater Prophet that God would raise up. Now that greater Prophet has come. His name is Jesus Christ. Just as Moses was faithful to hold fast God’s truth, Jesus Christ was faithful to the truth the Father committed to him. You have ‘professed’ {Heb 3:1} faith in Him, leaving the inferior (Moses’ law) for the superior (Christ’s gospel). But now, you are in danger of apostasy; you are ready to abandon your confession of Christ and return to the Jew’s religion. Be aware, then, that you are in danger of forfeiting God’s presence, for you are only His ‘house,’ that is, He will only dwell among you ‘if you hold fast’ your confession at the beginning until the very end. You must be faithful, like Moses and like Jesus, if you want God to acknowledge you as His special people.”

 

In the light of this riveting argument, the writer proceeds to startle them with the second warning in the epistle- a warning against “unbelief.” Don’t let your heart become hardened, he warns. Alluding to the failure of the Israelites to trust God in the wilderness, he implies that they are responding in the same way in the midst of their adversity. The Israelites murmured and complained, questioning “Is the Lord among us or not.”  {Ex 17:1-7} They accused Him of leading them out into the wilderness to die. Finally they conspired to appoint themselves a leader to return back to Egypt. {Nu 14:1-4} At that point, God’s patience was exhausted. He would tolerate their unbelief no longer. Since they wished to die instead of trusting Him to supply their needs and protect them each day, He granted their request. The people dropped dead, one by one, beneath the scorching Arabian sun. The story stands as an everlasting reminder of the seriousness of unbelief and the subtle danger of a gradual hardening of the heart.

 

“ Hebrews,” the writer warns, “guard your heart. Don’t repeat the mistake of your forefathers. Beware of the hardened heart of unbelief. Instead, hold fast your confidence and hope. Consider Jesus who was faithful to his task. Remember your confession of Christ at the beginning and be faithful to the very end. Don’t murmur or complain, lest you provoke the Lord to anger.”

A JEALOUS GOD (EXO. 20:5)

A JEALOUS GOD (Ex 20:5)

When Moses took charge of the children of Israel it was evident that they were a rebellious people. They were inclined to worship with the nations around them, and in doing this they owned other gods than the true God. They could consistently worship with one another, but Israel could not mingle with the nations around them. To do so confessed that there are other gods than the true God, and this is the greatest affront to God. This was the stumbling-block Balaam taught Balak to cast before Israel (Re 2:14), when he found that he could not curse Israel, and that the Lord was the sure support of Israel. He points out that the surest way to harm Israel is to induce them to marry into the families of the nations around them. Nu 22; 23; 24 recite the efforts of Balaam to ruin Israel. the 24th chapter shows that as soon as Balaam returned to his home that "Israel joined himself to Baal-peor." For this the "anger of the Lord was kindled against Israel." There were twenty-four thousand persons who died as a result of this destruction.
One of the children of Israel brought a Midianite woman, openly into the camp, and Phineas took a javelin and slew them both. To mix with the nations around in worship is to confess that their god is something. To do this is to admit that God is not "All in all." God's claim is, "I am God and beside me there is none else."

"Make ye marriages with us and give your daughters unto us and take our daughters unto you? (Ge 34:9). This was the cry of the nations around; but the safety of Israel required them to be a separate people. Customs that will build up other nations will ruin the Israel of God. Balaam pointed to this as the sure way to ruin Israel. To take a heathen woman to be the mother of your children will be fatal to the principles of true religion. Moses said, "Neither shalt thou make marriages with them" (De 7:3). To mix up in marriage with the nations around, is to destroy all the prejudice of Israel against the nations around, and the very nature of true religion is to look with prejudice upon error. When you destroy this prejudice you have no true lovers of truth.

Truth on any subject is illiberal (that is, opposed to liberalism), and especially is it so in religion. When we declare that there is "one only true and living God" we cannot afford to join in sacrifice or worship of any idol. "Ye shall destroy their altars, break down their images, and cut down their groves." Lovers of truth cannot maintain fellowship with error. Those who have stood for truth have ever been safest when they have been a separate people.

It is remarkable how prone Israel was to fall into idolatry when Moses went up into the mount to receive the law. Aaron and all the people united in making a golden calf to worship. Moses' own brother was in this sin. The people had seen idolatry in Egypt and knew the manner of it. They said, "These be the gods that brought us up out of Egypt." Three thousand of them were put to death for this sin (Ex 32:23-35).

How easy it is to slide into idolatry. It has been so in all ages and dispensations, and is so yet. Where one learns to be tolerent and liberal to error, he is no longer a faithful defender of the truth.

---Elder J. H. Oliphant
Zion's Advocate, 1913

A Jewish 12 Step Program

A Jewish 12 Step Program

Ecc 1:9 The thing that hath been, it [is that] which shall be; and that which is done [is] that which shall be done: and [there is] no new [thing] under the sun.

Moses was given examples and patterns in the Mount. It’s clear from study that we are only given a portion of the instructions he received.

Isa 8:18    Behold, I and the children whom the LORD hath given me [are] for signs and for wonders in Israel from the LORD of hosts, which dwelleth in mount Zion.

It sounds like their actions, traditions, and lifestyles are for signs, which in turn are for our instruction. 

Rom 9:4 Who are Israelites; to whom [pertaineth] the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service [of God], and the promises;   God gave the law, the service and the promises to Israel:

1Ch 28:11  Then David gave to Solomon his son the pattern of the porch, and of the houses thereof, and of the treasuries thereof, and of the upper chambers thereof, and of the inner parlours thereof, and of the place of the mercy seat, 1Ch 28:12 And the pattern of all that he had by the spirit, of the courts of the house of the LORD, and of all the chambers round about, of the treasuries of the house of God, and of the treasuries of the dedicated things:

1Ch 28:13 Also for the courses of the priests and the Levites, and for all the work of the service of the house of the LORD, and for all the vessels of service in the house of the LORD. 1Ch 28:14 [He gave] of gold by weight for [things] of gold, for all instruments of all manner of service; [silver also] for all instruments of silver by weight, for all instruments of every kind of service:

While it is clear from these scriptures that temple service by the priests were divine and from God, much of our understanding of how these services were accomplished does not come from the Bible.  The courses of the priests alone were incredibly detailed, as were the daily temple lotteries to determine assignments. So much detail was required in the Temple service, yet the scriptures don’t give us a step by step description.  We know few particulars about the mixing of incense, the continual fires, the detailed clothing, the inner workings of the sacrificial operations, or how to manage the exhaustive cleaning which must have been accomplished several times daily. These instructions and specifics came through oral tradition, which in turn was later written in the Talmud.

While we would never desire to add to or take away from God’s word, and we make it clear His word is complete and perfect without our drawing on outside sources, it does help those of us 2000 years removed to understand what the everyday Jew knew about customs and traditions.

We speculate that God, who instituted the covenant of marriage, gave Moses some essential details about the process which were not penned down in the Old Testament.  Yet among the Jews the traditions of the ancient wedding are long standing.  With a little research, we can find the fine points in the oral and written customs. How do they stack up with thus sayeth the Lord? 

Let’s examine the Jewish rituals and test whether those things are in agreement with scripture, in order to paint a more complete picture for our understanding.  As long as the tradition does no harm or contradicts scripture…

Having set those ground rules, let’s look at marriage in the days before Christ.

Marriage today is pretty easy for a man.  In our society, he puts on the clothing his bride has approved, meets with his friends and shows up, hopefully, on time at the Church.  The responsibility for every minute detail, every step, every nuance, fine-tuning, adjusting and re-adjusting until the event is complete falls to the Bride.  She organizes particulars, correcting and compromising to make the day a shining memorial to her many months of planning. 

But historically, the brunt of the work and details fell upon men. 

Before the law and traditions were established, we can see the example of Abraham, (Genesis 24:2-4; 15:2) sending his steward, Eliezer, to seek a wife for Issac.  In this picture, Abraham is a type of God; Eliezer represents the Holy Spirit, Issac is a picture of Christ and Rebekah, the bride. 

By the time of Christ, the steps for the marriage and wedding had been well established. For fathers, finding a future son or daughter-in- law was the side business at the time of the big feasts.

When not involved in worship, fathers with age appropriate children would gather in Jerusalem at the marketplace.  It was their opportunity to meet others and begin to negotiate marriages--which were then handled by legal contracts between fathers. Each was trying to trade up – to improve the family’s lot by marriage.

The Ancient Jewish Wedding

God ordained and established marriage and its divine sanctity in Genesis when He brought Adam and Eve together to become one flesh (Genesis 2:21-24).

The law was our schoolmaster to bring us to Christ. The wedding customs, service, and particulars God gave to the Jewish people also teach us much about Christ and the church.

Rom 3:2 Much every way: chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God.

Rom 9:4 Who are Israelites; to whom [pertaineth] the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service [of God], and the promises;

Col 2:16 Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath [days]: Col 2:17 Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body [is] of Christ.

The wedding ceremony consisted of 10 to 14 steps, depending upon which historian one consults and where they decide to break their paragraphs. Twelve steps make for a catchy title.

1. The selection of the bride.

The bride was usually chosen by the father of the bridegroom (as the elect were chosen by God.) (John 15:16)

Consider how different than our practices today: Rebekah consented to marry Isaac before she ever met him. Today, we become the bride of Christ even though we have never seen Him. 1Peter 1:8, Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see [him] not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:

2. A bride price was established.

A price would have to be paid for the bride.  Jesus, being our bridegroom, paid the ultimate high price for His bride, the Elect. Jesus considered the price He had to pay for His bride before His death as He prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane.

Christ was agreeing to the terms in the garden.  The bride price was His life.

3. The bride and groom are betrothed to each other.

Betrothal is similar to our engagement in the marriage process, except this process legally binds the bride and the groom together in a marriage contract; they will not yet physically live together.   This is how the Angel referred to Mary as Joseph’s wife, even before they had come together as we understand it.

In the Old Testament, God betrothed Himself to Israel at Mount Sinai (Jeremiah 2:2; Hosea 2:19-20).

4. That which is written – the Marriage Contract.

All the details and promises are spelled out in a contract form.  It declares clearly the bride price, the groom’s promises and the rights of the bride. The groom would promise to work for her, to honor, support, and maintain her in truth, to provide food, clothing and necessities, and to live together with her as husband and wife. The Jews considered the contract the unalienable right of the bride. The contract must be executed and signed prior to the wedding ceremony.

The Bible is the believer's contract. All the promises that God provided for his children in Christ are legally ours, as we see in 2 Corinthians 1:20, For all the promises of God in him [are] yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us.

Jer 2:2 Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, Thus saith the LORD; I remember thee, the kindness of thy youth, the love of thine espousals, when thou wentest after me in the wilderness, in a land [that was] not sown.

5. The bride gives her consent.  God betrothed Himself to Israel at Mount Sinai as stated in Jeremiah 2:2.

Israel consented to the marriage proposal from God and said, "I do."

Exd 24:3 And Moses came and told the people all the words of the LORD, and all the judgments: and all the people answered with one voice, and said, All the words which the LORD hath said will we do.

6. Gifts were given to the bride and the "cup of the covenant" was shared between the bride and the groom.

The rite of betrothal is completed when the groom gives something of value to the bride and she accepts it. Most often today a ring is used. When the groom places the ring on the bride's finger, the rite of betrothal is completed. This completed rite is known in Hebrew as kiddushin, meaning "sanctification."

The gifts to the bride represent love, commitment, and loyalty. The gift God gives is the Holy Spirit (John 14:26; 15:26-27; Acts 2:38; 2 Corinthians 1:21-22). When Christ ascended to Heaven, He gave gifts to men (Ephesians 4:7-8). These gifts included righteousness (Romans 5:17-18), eternal life (Romans 6:23), grace (Romans 5:12, 14-15), faith (Ephesians 2:8-9), and other spiritual gifts (1 Corinthians 12:1, 4) as well as the gifts of helps and administration (1 Corinthians 12:28).

At this time the cup of the covenant is shared and sealed between the bride and the groom with the drinking of wine. In doing so, the couple drinks from a common cup. The cup is first given to the groom to sip, and then is given to the bride. This cup, known as the cup of the covenant, is spoken of in Jeremiah 31:31-33, as it is written:

Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah: not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which My covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the Lord: but this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put My law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be My people (Jeremiah 31:31-33).  

Christ, in Luke 22:20.   Mat 26:29  But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father's kingdom.

 

 

 7. The bride had a mikvah (full water immersion), a ritual cleansing.

Mikvah is a Hebrew word meaning "pool" or "body of water." Mikvah is a ceremonial act of purification by the immersion in water. It indicates a separation from a former way to a new way. In marriage, it represents leaving an old life for a new life with your spouse (Genesis 2:23-24; Ephesians 5:31). According to the Jews, immersing in the mikvah constituted spiritual rebirth. The Jews believed a mikvah had the power to change a person completely.

Concerning the marriage to Israel at Mount Sinai, God said in Ezekiel 16:8-9, as it is written, "...I sware unto thee, and entered into a covenant with thee... and thou becamest Mine. Then washed I thee with water...."

8. The bridegroom departed, going back to his father's house to make ready.

At this point, the bridegroom leaves for his father's house to prepare the bridal chamber for his bride. It was understood to be the man's duty to go to be with his father, build a house, (or add a room to the family home – a bridal chamber) and prepare for the eventual wedding. Before he goes, however, he makes a statement to the bride. "I go to prepare a place for you; if I go, I will return again unto you." This is the same statement Christ made in John:  

Let not your heart be troubled: ye believe in God, believe also in me. In my Father's house are many mansions: if [it were] not [so], I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, [there] ye may be also.  (John 14:1-3).

Did the Apostles and disciples understand the symbolism when Christ made statements like this?

9. The bride was consecrated and set apart for a period of time while the bridegroom was away building the house.    

From the time of the separation, until the return of the bridegroom, tradition says nine months to a year was about the average time.  It took this long for some young men to take on a task of this magnitude.  He could be as young as fourteen, and not yet skilled with tools and carpentry.  But it was primarily his responsibility to complete the task successfully.

Before the bridegroom could go and get the bride, the groom's father had to be satisfied with the son’s preparation work. Only then could he give permission to the son to go and get the bride. In other words, while the bridegroom was working on the bridal chamber, it was the father who at some time would declare the bridal chamber complete and send him to retrieve his bride. This reference of Christ in Mark 13:32-37 should be familiar: No man knows the day or the hour, but the Father.

Since it was the Father whose final approval of the chambers set the timing of the wedding, "only the Father knew" when the Groom would return to get his bride.   

Often the bride and groom lived in the same community, and as the work on the bride chamber neared completion, word would reach the bride.  Careful to watch the signs and the seasons, she then would anticipate the arrival of the groom and begin to make ready.  The excitement level would indicate to all it was no longer a matter of months or weeks, but now days. 

Tradition says most weddings took place on Tuesdays, because the Sanhedrin court would meet on Thursday.  The reasoning being if a man found his bride less than he expected in the way of purity, he would be able to immediately seek recourse from the high court. 

The bride knows the groom can now return at any time.  The custom is to come around midnight, so the bride would gather her female attendants – her bridal virgins, to keep her company and wait with her until the groom came for her.  They watched from sundown to after midnight nightly, so naturally, they required lamps and oil for the waiting in dark of night. 

Christ referred to this in Mark 13:32-37 and Matthew 25:1-13. While waiting for her bridegroom to come, the bride had to have thought to herself, "Is he really coming back for me? Will he keep his word?"  The Apostle addressed this concern for God’s children in 2 Peter 3:1-13.

10. The bridegroom would return with a shout, "Behold, the bridegroom comes" and the sound of the ram's horn (shofar) would be blown.

The bridegroom comes with his wedding party.  As he got close to the awaiting Bride, the friend of the groom would run ahead and shout the pending arrival (Matthew 25:6) and blow the shofar (trumpet) (1 Thessalonians 4:16).

John the Baptist called himself the friend of the bridegroom and fulfilled the role tradition and scripture had for him. (John 3:29)

Upon hearing the shout and the trumpet, the father of the bride would come out to meet the coming party, verifying for himself the groom is the correct man, and then disappear into the darkness, so as not to witness his daughter stolen from his home. 

11. He would abduct his bride, usually in the middle of the night, to go to the bridal chamber where the marriage would be consummated.

After the father has departed, the groom continues the procession, takes the Bride and leads the entire cloud of witnesses in the opposite direction toward the bridal chamber.  The bride and groom will go to the wedding chamber, where the marriage will be consummated. This is the full marriage.  They will stay in that wedding chamber for seven days, or a week. At the end of the seven days, the bride and groom will come out from the wedding chamber. Joel 2:16.

12. Finally, there would be a marriage supper for all the guests invited by the father of the bride.

When the bride and the groom go into the wedding chamber, the friend of the groom stood outside the door, awaiting his last official act.  The assembled guests awaited the announcement of consummation of the marriage, made by the friend as soon as word was relayed to him by the groom. John the Baptist referred to this in John 3:29. At this signal, great rejoicing broke forth. The marriage was consummated on the first night (Genesis 29:23). The linen from this night was preserved as proof of the bride's virginity (Deuteronomy 22:13-21).

On the wedding day, the bridegroom is seen as a king and the bride as a queen.

The first recorded miracle of Jesus took place at a wedding.  If we examine closely the scriptures, we can see the importance of the actions and statements Jesus made while in His earthly ministry.  All was done with a purpose.  God give us the ability to see the rich threads of patterns throughout His written word.

The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son…

Bro. Royce Ellis

 

A KING SHALL REIGN IN RIGHTEOUSNESS

A KING SHALL REIGN IN RIGHTEOUSNESS
By Elder David P. Bridgman (Deceased)

   “Behold, a king shall reign in righteousness, and princes shall rule in judgment. And a man shall be as an hiding place from the wind, and a covert from the tempest; as rivers of water in a dry place, as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land.” (Isa 32:1-2).

   My dear friends, we notice that practically all the spiritual lessons taught in the Bible are illustrated by natural figures. Natural things are mentioned in order to teach spiritual lessons. In this manner, of course, it is easy to be understood. It is well understood by all intelligent Bible readers that Christ set up HIS KINGDOM while here in the world, and if it is His kingdom, it is but reasonable to say that He is the only one to give it its laws and regulations. And though it was hundreds of years prior to this when this lesson was written, even so it was with all of His other work, in fact practically all that is mentioned in the New Testament was foretold by His prophets, and when they told it then it was as sure as though it had already come to pass, inasmuch as God is the author of all scripture and they are all true.

   The prophet is here referring to Christ, the king of all kings, and since there could be no kingdom without a king, it is reasonable to say that Christ is the king of the kingdom He set up. The subjects of the kingdom are here called princes. In my way of seeing it, there is no difference in the members, male or female, young or old, when it comes to carrying out the rules of the kingdom. Each one sets as a prince and as a judge when one comes to the kingdom and asks for a home and if any member of that kingdom knows that a person is guilty of any of the seventeen works of the flesh mentioned in Ga 5:19-21 it is the duty of such to make it known and whatsoever the church binds on earth is bound in heaven. God will recognize it. And whatsoever the church shall loose on earth, shall be loosed in heaven. When the church receives a member, God will recognize it, and the same thing applies to dealing with a member. This, of course, is only recognized by the heavenly Father when His laws and precepts are observed, and then He will shower His blessings upon them. The princes shall rule in judgment. This is the judgment that comes from above, and not the judgments of the flesh. Now, while it is difficult to understand what His laws are at times we must keep in mind that they never change. It is true that the laws of our land are often changed, and new laws are made to suit the times and conditions, but the King of kings never changes His laws and He must reign. He has promised us great blessings if we observe His laws and He has promised us something else, if we fail to obey, and in either case He will surely reign.

   “And a man shall be as an hiding place from the wind.” I am reminded of the wind last winter. I recall at times it was so cold that one would have frozen had he no hiding place. Can you recall in your past life when you were so cold spiritually that you were just dying for the warmth of the man Christ Jesus? I am sure that most of us can recall when we were so cold, so indifferent, so far away from Christ. We fail sometimes to go to the hiding place. Oh, that we might keep in memory that Jesus is our hiding place! “Rock of Ages, cleft for me; let me hide myself in thee.” What a great place to hide away from the coldness of this old sinful world. Surely there is none like it. This is the only place where we can find an hiding place of safety, a warm place of quiet and calm.

   “And a covert from the tempest.” I am here reminded of the time when His disciples were upon the sea and the great storm was raging. They realized that death was near, but suddenly blessed Jesus appeared unto them and said, “Be not afraid, it is I.” If the little tempest-tossed child will only turn his eyes to Him and recall what He said to His disciples at this time, he will realize that it is to Him that we must go for safety, for encouragement, for a place to hide from the wiles of Satan. When we go to Him for a covert, we always find a place of safety. A place where the winds of doctrines of men and devils cannot reach us. Oh, if we will only study to show ourselves approved unto God, and become established in the faith, we can be assured that we will not be blown about; and when we are in trouble and clouds have gathered thick, and thundered loud, we can say with the poet, “He near my soul has always stood, His lovingkindness, oh how good!”

   When the death angel comes into our homes and takes away our precious loved ones, He is a present help in time of trouble. He is filled with sorrow and acquainted with grief, a covert from the tempest. He is all of this and even more.

   “As rivers of water in a dry place.” My friends, if you have been dry and thirsty and your poor tongue parched, you would welcome a thimbleful of water. It would mean so much to you, but He is as RIVERS of water. What an abundance of water! “There is a river, the streams whereof shall make glad the city of God, the holy place of the tabernacles of the most High.” Ps 46:4. How wonderful it is, for His children to be able to drink of the fountain of the water of life in His kingdom here in this life. And too, there is such an abundance—no less today than there was the first day. They tell me that water cannot be disposed of, that there is as much natural water today as there was when the world was made, and there is plenty in the storehouse of God, it will never run dry. We are told in Malachi to just try Him and see if He will not pour us out a blessing that there will not be room to receive. In the twenty-second chapter of Revelations we are taught to come and drink of the water of life freely. When we are thirsty for spiritual meat and drink we should go to Him and know that He has an abundance of it.

   And last, but not least, “He is as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land.” Dear friends, if you have ever travelled by foot until you were exhausted, and it seemed that you could go no farther with the burning heat of the sun upon you, and in this condition you suddenly came upon a great rock that extended out and made a cool shadow, you have indeed had a great experience. Jesus is all this to you in a spiritual sense. When life’s journey becomes unbearable and we are about to faint by the way when it seems that all have forsaken us and there is none to go to, He is then the shadow of a great rock in a weary land. And when those on the outside of the kingdom labor and are heavy laden and find no rest, if they will turn to Him by going to His kingdom and asking for a home, they will find REST, SWEET REST, for of a truth you will always find Jesus when you go to where His flock is. In His kingdom you will find a cool and refreshing quietness, a place where you will want to remain as long as you live. What a wonderful place for God’s little children to dwell in! To those who are in the kingdom and have become disturbed and fail to have that sweet rest, may I remind you of the sweet rest you once found and tell you that He is God and changes not. When John was in prison he was only shown these things AGAIN. Shown the great power, the great love, the great mercy, the extreme kindness and all that it takes to make a child of God happy while he lives here. Jesus is all this and much more to His children.

   I well realize that this little article is like myself, full of errors. I have had to stop over a dozen times to wait on trade while trying to write it, but I hope it is worth something to some poor little child somewhere. If I am wrong in my thoughts, please cast a mantle of charity over my imperfections. May you strive for the things that make for peace.

   Written in the interest of the cause of Christ.

(From “The Way The Lord Has Led Me” by
Elder David P. Bridgman)

A LESSON ON PRAYER

A LESSON ON PRAYER

 I once heard an old sister tell of a lesson she learned about prayer that I have thought of many times since. She was a member of the church with which I first united. She was very spiritual and studied her Bible a great deal. Her husband was not a member of the church. It was her practice to read a chapter from the Bible when the family were all gathered at night and then offer prayer. One night it chanced that her husband had to be away from home, and none of the children were there with her, so she was alone. When it came time to retire, and the time came for the evening reading and prayer drew nigh, she thought to herself, "There are no children here, and John (her husband) is not here, and I will leave off the reading and prayer tonight." But she could not feel free of mind, though she kept on preparing to retire. Finally the thought came to her with much force, "Do you need to read the Bible? You do not pray to John and the children do you? They could not answer your prayer if they were here. If you pray to God, is He not here? And will He not hear and answer?" She said that she could no longer excuse herself. She knelt in prayer. "And," said she, "God did hear my prayer that night and blessed me with His presence so that I was happy and had a good meeting by myself." I have thought many times when thinking over this that no doubt many times we pray to be heard of men and lose that precious prayer-feeling of being in the presence of God and supplicating His mercy for blessings that He alone can give.

 ---Elder Walter Cash, 1925

A Little Thing?

A LITTLE THING?
(Charles Spurgeon)

   Beware of light thoughts of sin. It is sadly true, that even a Christian may grow by degrees so callous, that the sin which once startled him--no longer alarms him in the least. We palliate and excuse our sin; we throw a cloak over it; we call it by dainty names.

   Sin, a little thing? Is it not a poison! Who knows its deadliness!

   Sin, a little thing? Do not the little foxes--spoil the grapes? Does not the tiny coral insect--build a rock which wrecks a navy? Do not little strokes--fell lofty oaks? Will not continual droppings--wear away stones?

   Sin, a little thing? It girded your Redeemer's head with thorns--and pierced His heart! It made Him suffer anguish, bitterness, and woe! Could you weigh the least sin in the scales of eternity--you would fly from it as from a serpent, and abhor the least appearance of evil. Look upon all sin as that which crucified your Savior--and you will see it to be "exceeding sinful."
**********
“…for sin is the transgression of the law.”—1Jo 3:4

A LITTLE WHILE

A LITTLE WHILE
By
Elder Herman Clark
Iuka, Mississippi

   I have many memories of my early childhood in Tishomingo County, Mississippi and Coolidge, Arizona.

    My family moved back and forth from Mississippi to Arizona on several occasions. While living in Arizona, we would visit the family in Mississippi. I can remember after traveling in our car for many hours day and night, (after all I don’t think my Dad knew what a motel was), I would ask my mother, “How long will it be ‘til we get to grandma’s?’” She would then reply, “A little while, Son, a little while.” The moment we left the east side of Memphis, TN, traveling on Hwy 72 East, I was continually looking for Walnut, MS. Next came Iuka, MS, where we would turn south for a few miles and then travel down the old winding, gravel, back roads to the old home place. Sure enough, it was a “little while” and we had made our journey home. It was a joyous time as we arrived and all doors of the car would open and everyone was racing toward those that were waiting for our arrival. We would meet and everyone embraced each other and tears of joy would flow from most everyone’s eyes.

   James the Apostle teaches us in Jas 4:14, “Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow, For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.” We may live a hundred years on this earth, yet it is only a little while until we reach our final home. I have often wondered how it would be in that moment when we leave this timely world and arrive in the arms of a waiting Jesus and to see him face to face. It has got to be a most joyous occasion. We read in 2Co 5:2-8, “For we know that if our earthly house, of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: if so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked. For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we should be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life. Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given us the earnest of the Spirit. Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.”

   Friends, it is just “a little while” and then our journey is over. When we draw our last breath, our souls are immediately with Jesus waiting until the resurrection of the Just and the Unjust. My friends, there will not be a “line-up” at the pearly gates on that day as some suppose. The only people that will live in heaven are those that were redeemed by the blood of Christ. There will be no casting out.

   Jesus our Lord walked the shores of time and on several occasions he used the words “a little while.” Does it seem along your way in life that “A little while” becomes a long time? And then, once we have reached our destination, we look back, and it has been only “A little while.”

   Jesus said to the Pharisees in Joh 7:33-35, “Then said Jesus unto them, Yet a little while am I with you, and then I go unto him that sent me. Ye shall seek me, and shall not find me, and where I am, thither ye cannot come. Then said the Jews among themselves, Whither will he go, that we shall not find him? Will he go unto the dispersed among the Gentiles, and teach the Gentiles?” To some these words were sorrowful, yet to others it was as though they were saying, maybe he will go and leave us alone.

   Jesus said, in Joh 13:33, “Little children, yet a little while, I am with you. Ye shall seek me: and as I said unto the Jews, Whither I go, ye cannot come: so now I say to you.” This was after Judas had taken the sop during the supper and left Jesus with the other eleven disciples in the upper room. The disciples’ did not understand Jesus’ words to them. Jesus teaches in Joh 14:19, "Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more, but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.” What a great and wonderful promise he has given us!

   In Joh 16:16-19, “A little while, and ye shall not see me: And again, a little while, and ye shall see me, because I go to the Father. Then said some of his disciples among themselves, What is this that he saith unto us, A little while, and ye shall not see me: and again, a little while, and ye shall see me: and, Because I go to the Father? They said therefore, What is this that he saith, A little while? We cannot tell what he saith. Now Jesus knew that they were desirous to ask him, and said unto them, Do ye enquire among yourselves of what I said, A little while, and ye shall not see me: and again, a little while, and ye shall see me?” There must have been great sadness in the hearts of the disciples that heard Jesus’ words. Yet Jesus said, “…a little while…” It won’t be long. “…ye shall see me.”  Christ appeared to the disciples after his resurrection. Much could be said concerning that occasion. I hope that we do not forget those words of Jesus, “…ye shall see me.”

   I am reminded of a verse of scripture in Ps 30:5, “For his anger endureth for a moment: in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.”

   My friends do you long for your long sought home? Are you weary of the way? Are you tired? Does trouble surround you? Are you in distress, weeping through the night? Are you looking for that great day that the Lord will return and call us home? If any of these questions fit your case, please remember “A little while.” It won’t be long until you shall see heaven’s gates opened and you are ushered in by the King of kings, Jesus Christ. As the song states, “There is coming a day when no heartaches shall come, No more clouds in the sky, no more tears to dim the eye; All is peace forever more on that happy golden shore, What a day, glorious day that will be!” I thank God for His amazing grace. God bless and keep you is my prayer.

   Elder Herman Clark
(From “Glad Tidings”, June 2001)

A MIGHTY MAN BROUGHT DOWN

A MIGHTY MAN BROUGHT DOWN
Written by Elder Herman Clark
Iuka, Mississippi

   In the book of Judges, chapters thirteen through sixteen, we find the teachings concerning a mighty man named Samson. To those that are not familiar with what these scriptures teach, I encourage the reading of these chapters.

   Many things happened in the life of Samson that proves that God was with him along life’s way. Jg 13:5 teaches us that Samson was a “…Nazarite unto God from the womb.” The word Nazarite meant that Samson was consecrated from his mother’s womb. He was a child of promise. The mother was not to drink neither wine nor strong drink, and eat not any unclean thing; and no razor shall come on his head. Samson was to begin to deliver Israel out of the hand of the Philistines. Samson was such a mighty man that he found a new jawbone of an ass, and put forth his hand, and took it, and slew a thousand men therewith. He caused great fear in the camps of the Philistines.

   Samson’s wife, Delilah, loved the things of the world more than she did her husband. She was willing to betray her husband that he might be taken captive by the Philistines. After telling his wife the secret of his strength, he lay his head into the lap of his wife and fell to sleep and his hair was cut by the Philistines. He arose and his mighty strength was taken from him. The Philistines took Samson captive, and put out his eyes and made him to grind in the prison house. After this his hair began to grow again. “Then the lords of the Philistines gathered them together for to offer a great sacrifice unto Dagon their god, and to rejoice: for they said, Our God hath delivered Samson our enemy into our hand. And when the people saw him, they praised their god: for they said, our god hath delivered into our hands our enemy, and the destroyer of our country, which slew many of us.” Jg 16:23-24)

   It came to pass, that when their hearts were merry, that they said, Call for Samson, that he may make us sport. And they called for Samson out of the prison house; and they set him between the pillars. Remember that this is a great house, the temple of Dagon, which was built upon great columns. Can’t you just see the three thousand people sitting on the bleachers of this place, looking down at this mighty man Samson? They began to clap and pound, impatient for the amusement to begin. Does this ring a bell! As they looked they saw this mighty man, a giant of a man, appearing in the midst of the temple, led by the hand of a child. What a mockery! Samson told the young lad to “Bring me where the pillars are.” The lad does so and Samson placed his hands upon the mighty pillars. It was here that this mighty man, blinded by the Philistines spoke these words. “And Samson called unto the LORD, and said, O Lord GOD, remember me, I pray thee, only this once, O God, that I may be at once avenged of the Philistines for my two eyes. And Samson took hold of the two middle pillars upon which the house stood, and on which it was borne up, of the one with his right hand, and of the other with his left. And Samson said, Let me die with the Philistines. And he bowed himself with all his might, and the house fell upon the lords, and upon all the people that were therein. So the dead which he slew at his death were more than they which he slew in his life.” Jg 16:28-31

   I would like to point out that we find in the book of Hebrews, the eleventh chapter (mentioned by many as the “faith chapter”) the names of many of the faithful men and women of old. Among those mentioned is the man that this article is about. Heb 11:32 “And what shall I more say? For the time would fail me to tell of Gideon, and of Barak, and of SAMSON, and of Jephthae; of David also, and Samuel, and of the prophets: who through faith subdued kingdoms, wrought righteousness, obtained promises, stopped the mouths of lions.”

   Friends there are certain amusements that are destructive and bring down disaster and death to those that practice them. Let us always beware of the snares of the Devil.
(From “The GOOD NEWS Newsletter”, June. 2006)

A NEW BEGINNING

A NEW BEGINNING

When you feel like you’re falling to pieces, and fate
    seems to lead you astray;
Remember the world keeps on turning, new
    beginnings are yours with each day.
When you’re down and your bank account’s empty,
   And you’re burdened with bills you can’t pay.
Reach into your heart for some riches, There’s
   enough love to share day by day.
If you’re open to life’s every challenge, Then
   misfortune won’t bring you dismay;
You’ll blossom in strength with each sorrow, And with
   courage salute each day.

 Jacqueline Schiff—Ottie Sneed Submitted
(From “Glad Tidings”, Sept. 1984)

A NOBLE BOY

A NOBLE BOY
(Copied from Monthly Miscellany, April 16,1849)

   A boy was once tempted by some of his companions to pluck ripe cherries from a tree which his father had forbidden him to touch.

   “You need not be afraid,” said one of his companions, “for if your father should find out that you had them, he is so kind that he would not hurt you.”

   “That is the very reason,” replied the boy, “why I would not touch them.  It is true, my father would not hurt me, yet my disobedience I know would hurt my father, and that would be worse to me than anything else.”

   A boy who grows up with such principles would be a man in the best sense of the word.  It betrays a regard for rectitude that would render him trustworthy under every trial.
(From “For The Poor”, March, 1942)

A PARODY OF AMAZING GRACE

A PARODY OF AMAZING GRACE

The following poem was written one day during the Daily-Throgmorton debate. The purpose was to arrange this old salvation-by-grace song to suit the Missionary Baptist Arminian system of salvation by works.---Elder R. H. Pittman.

Amazing works, how sweet the sound,
That saved a saint like me;
Was almost lost but now am found
For works have set me free.

'Twas fear that urged me on to work,
And works my fears relieved;
How precious did my works appear
The hour I first believed.

Through dangers I'm resolved to go,
Through many such I've come,
'Tis works has brought me safe thus far
And works will lead me home.

The Lord has promised good to me,
And works this good secures;
He will my life and portion be
If my good work endures.

Yea, when this flesh and heart shall fail
And my good works shall cease;
I shall deserve within the vail
A seat high up in peace.

The earth shall soon dissolve like snow,
Then I'll begin to shine;
My works eternally shall glow
In that immortal clime.

---Elder P. T. Oliphant
Zion's Advocate, 1911

A Pastor's Four Responses To Bill Nye After the Nye/Ham Debate

A Pastor's Four Responses To Bill Nye After the Nye/Ham Debate
Written by Dolph Painter  

The following was written by Dolph Painter, pastor of Mount Olive Primitive Baptist Church in Roanoke Virginia. I received it via facebook and it is definitately worth FWDing along.
- Ben Winslett
 
**** 
After watching the Ham-Nye Debate, I have four thoughts I would like to share with our members, especially those in school. The thoughts that follow are responses to challenges made by Mr. Nye. They are: 
 
• Christians do not haphazardly decide to interpret scripture figuratively. The Bible is not one book, but a collection of 66 books (penned by 40+ men over 1600 years). Yes, all 66 books are bound between two covers and we generically refer to our bibles as The Good Book; but this language is not accurate. The Bible is a library, not a book. Included in this library are: law books, history books, books of poetry, books written from mentors to apprentices, a book of short pithy sayings, …). Any secularist with a library knows that genre determines how a book ought to be read. One does not read Tennyson the same as The Farmer’s Almanac. One does not read Aesop the same as The Dead Sea Scrolls. Such is the case with the 66 books of the Bible. Genre, not preference determines how the Bible is to be interpreted.
 
• Christians do not haphazardly decide a commandment is out of date. Mr. Nye quoted an O.T. law to belittle Christians. Our President has employed similar tactics. Consider the following illustration: Nearly 200 years ago, land known as the Louisiana Purchase was owned and governed by France. French law governed the people of this land, not American law. But when America purchased this land, French law lost its jurisdiction. U.S. law governs and rules. Such is the case with O.T. ceremonial law. When Jesus bought us, ceremonial law lost its jurisdiction. N.T. law governs and rules. An Arkansas lawyer may have an old French law book in his/her library, but its jurisdiction has been usurped. The Bible includes the Book of Leviticus, but its jurisdiction has been usurped. Jurisdiction, not preference determines which Bible commandments are to be obeyed.
 
• The Bible makes predictions. Here are ten personal favorites:
1. A cursed world leads to a planet wearing out, not getting more complicated
2. Confession is more prone to mental health than is self-esteem building
3. Unstrained lust will lead to societies without self-discipline and morality
4. Workfare will be much more profitable than welfare
5. Not disciplining children will reduce respect for authority and lower work ethic
6. Debt causes people, companies, and nations to become tails, not heads
7. Lottery winner wanna-be’s will be miserable; lottery winners will be more miserable.
8. The most effective teachers will employ investigation and reflection
9. God fearing people will be healthier, happier, and live longer (on average)
10. Laughter also leads to better health
 
• Bible believers do not make for bad scientists. Consider two counter-cultural teachings and a few other facts:
1. Blood-letting cost George Washington his life. The Bible said life is in the blood, the majority of scientists (of that day) said death is in the blood.
2. Infected scalpels killed more Civil War soldiers than did bullets. The Bible said cleanse with running water, the doctors (of that day) cleansed with pooled water.
3. The Bible taught evaporation, wind currents, water currents, ocean floors, a round earth, a suspended earth, germs, quarantining practices, star uniqueness & numbers long before scientists figured these things out.
4. The following scientists were not only Christians but preachers: Isaac Newton, Louis Pasteur, Robert Boyle, Francis Bacon, Galileo Galiler, Rene’ Descates, Greg Mendel, and George Washington Carver. These preachers’ scientific discoveries changed our world.
 

A POEM BY BENJAMIN FRANKLIN

A POEM BY BENJAMIN FRANKLIN

   In one of his lighter moments, Benjamin Franklin penned his own epitaph. He didn’t profess to be a born-again Christian, but it seems that he must have been influenced by Paul’s teaching of the resurrection of the body. Here’s what he wrote:

The Body of B. Franklin, Printer:
Like the Cover of an old Book
Its contents torn out,
And stript of its Lettering and Guilding,
Lies here, Food for Worms,

But the Work shall not be wholly lost:
For it will, as he believ’d,
Appear once more
In a new and more perfect Edition,
Corrected and amended by the Author.
Source unknown

A PRAYER

A PRAYER

Ah, dearest Jesus, holy Child,
Make thee a bed, soft, undefiled,
Within my heart, that it may be
A quiet chamber kept for Thee.

My heart for very joy doth leap,
My lips no more can silence keep,
I too must sing, with joyful tongue,
That sweetest ancient cradle song,

Glory to God in highest heaven,
Who unto man His Son hath given
While angels sing with pious mirth.
A glad new year to all the earth.

Martin Luther
--Source unknown

A PRAYER ANSWERED

A PRAYER ANSWERED

   Below is an account reported by Elder Hassell, who said “To go forth and do the work which God assigns us, trusting wholly in Him, and relying only on His promises, may seem but madness in the eyes of worldly wisdom; but the believing Christian needs not to be told that where the Lord guides, He provides; where He directs, He protects.  And that He has other means besides subscription-papers and contribution-boxes to make good his purpose that ‘they who preach the gospel shall live of the gospel.’  This may be seen from the following authentic statement of a simple fact which recently occurred.  “A stranger arrived not long ago in a large city, having come there to preach Christ, trusting in Him who said, “’Bread shall be given him; his waters shall be sure’ (Isa 33:16).  Very few were known to him there, and fewer still knew of his desire of preaching the gospel of Jesus in its freeness, making his needs known only to the Lord.  A few weeks after his arrival, when walking one Sunday afternoon to his appointed place of preaching, he met with a brother, Mr. D., whom he had seen before, and who was now going to hear him preach. As they walked on, arm in arm, Mr. D. said, ‘I have been looking for you the last few days, having wanted to see you. Were you not praying two days ago for something?’  The preacher being silent, not wishing to make known his need, Mr. D. continued, ‘I know you have been praying, for two days ago; sitting in my house, I felt thoroughly impressed that you needed money, and so prepared this letter for you,’ at the same time handing him a sealed envelope.  On his return home, he took it from his pocket; there were three words on the outside—‘God is love’—and enclosed was fifty dollars.  I need scarcely add that the servant of God had been praying two days previously, while at the same time the Lord put it into the heart of one of His children, in another part of the city, to administer to his needs.’

   Surely it is safe to trust in the Lord; for He, whose ancient servants, though sent out without purse or scrip, could joyfully testify that they lacked nothing, is as mindful today as He then was of the needs of those who for His name’s sake, have gone forth in simple confidence in Him to supply their necessities; and He yet has servants not a few, who believe with John that we ‘ought to receive such, that we might be fellow-helpers to the truth,’ and who stand ready, like Gaius, to bring them ‘forward on their journey after a godly sort’ (3Jo 6-8) while they fulfill their ministry.’
(From “Remarkable Providences”,

--Elder Harold Hunt, Editor)

A PRAYER HEARD AND A PROMISE VERIFIED

A PRAYER HEARD AND A PROMISE VERIFIED

Back in old slave days there was a slave woman, Sojourner Truth, a freed-woman, who with her small brood lived down near the river in a little Cabin. Then trouble came. One of the little ones got sick. Sojourner was out of work, debts piled up, and as she couldn't pay, the court rendered a judgment against her. The sheriff came and took her oldest girl to be sold at auction for debt.

The skies were as black as the skin of that poor soul, and despair filled the mother's heart. She watched them lead her daughter away, and then breathed this prayer: "O God, if you were in trouble as I am in trouble, and I could help you as easily as you can help me, I would do it." That was her prayer. It wasn't a high-churchly composition, but it came from a believing heart.
Over at the auction block was a twelve-year-old boy, the son of a cotton speculator. He was touched with the grief of Sojourner and her daughter. He hurried to his father and said, "Dad, give me ten dollars."

His father brushed him aside, saying, "Don't bother me now, son, I'm busy."

"But Dad, I must have ten dollars."

The father handed him a ten dollar bill and the boy hurried away, getting back to the auction block just as the auctioneer asked, "What am I bid?"

Then the boy stepped up and said, "Ten dollars."

The crowd laughed,---a twelve-year-old boy bidding ten dollars for a negro girl about his age."

The auctioneer paid no attention to the boy, and continued to ask for bids, and again the young fellow raised his voice and said, "I bid ten dollars."

Again the crowd laughed,---ten dollars for a slave worth at least two hundred dollars.

The auctioneer became angry and warned, "If someone does not make an opening bid, I will sell this girl to that boy for ten dollars."

Once more the crowd roared with good-natured laughter at the expense of the auctioneer, and he in anger said, "Sold, to this boy for ten dollars. You can't make a joke out of my sales."
The boy went over to the clerk, handed over his ten dollars, got the bill of sale, and walking back to the girl, said, "Come with me." Then he led her to her mother and as he placed the bill of sale in her hand, said to Sojourner Truth, "Now you can have your girl back again."

Her prayer had been answered, "O God, if you were in trouble as I am in trouble, and I could help you as easily as you can help me, I would do it." God heard that prayer and verified the promise, "I will be with him in trouble" (Ps 91:15).

---From a sermon by Elder Eldon A. Hutchison
Messenger of Peace, 1945

A Problem with the Doctrine of the General Atonement

A Problem with the Doctrine of the General Atonement
Written by Ben Cordes  

The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. 2Pe 3:9
 
The idea that Christ died for all mankind is very well-known.  However, because something is well-known does that make it correct?  By no-means is popularity an indicator that something is true.  I would encourage you to read the above verse.  More importantly, I would encourage you to read the above verse in context of the chapter it is taken from in 2nd Peter.  Peter wrote to the belovedof God on the topic of the second coming of Christ.  Peter taught that Christ had made a promise.
 
The promise Peter was referring to can be found in Joh 14:3.  Christ said “And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, there ye may be also.”  Christ promised to return to earth for the purpose of gathering people to take them to be wherever He is, never to part.  You may then ask, who are the people He will be coming back to receive?  It could not be all of mankind, because hell will be occupied by people.  If not all people will go to heaven, then who?  Jesus said in Joh 6:39 “And this is the Father's will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day.”  The answer is simple, Christ promised to come back to gather everyone the Father has given to Him and they are the ones who will live eternally with Him.  Thus, reason from what the Bible obviously teaches concludes that Christ was given a specific number of people to redeem and gather.  The promise found in the Bible is also clear that none of the people Christ possesses will be lost.  What is also revealed is that this group contains no small number of people.  In fact, the Bible says it is so large that no man can number it!  And these people are from all over the world, from every culture, from every race, with every language represented, and from every age of history, from beginning to end (Re 7:9).  This is proof that God has given Jesus a very, very large group of people.  This is proof of a limited atonement.
 
As the title states, a problem arises with the doctrine of the general atonement.  The problem is, if Christ died for all mankind, how could Christ ever return?  When would be the appropriate time?  You see, if Christ has died for everyone, then would not those who could be born after Christ’s return have an issue?  Would not then their opportunity to be saved then be lost by Christ’s return?  You see, the general atonement says that everyone’s sins have been paid for, but those people must also choose to accept the gift of eternal salvation.  If Christ were to return under these conditions, He would have to accept that there would be an infinite amount of people that would never get a chance to accept Him.  Humanity could potentially go on for generations and generations which, according to the general atonement, means that the potential for generations and generations to accept Jesus would then be lost (i.e. perish, go to hell) at Christ’s second coming.  This would place Christ in a dilemma, and thus reveal a problem with the general atonement doctrine.  This quandary does not exist with the limited atonement of the Bible. 
 
If Christ died for a vast and foreknown group of people called the elect (1Pe 1:2).  And Christ has promised to return and receive them into heaven then it is clear that there is a proper time for Christ to return.  As stated in 2Pe 3:9, the Father is long-suffering while every single one of His elect come to repentance (i.e. are changed from death to life) by the exclusive and effectual work of the Holy Ghost.  Once God has sovereignly made all of His children alive in Christ, He then has no more reason to be long-suffering.  Who knows when that time will come?  Only the Father knows (Mr 13:32).  But we rest secure in the promise of His return.   And just as sure as there is a definite end to this world, there must be a vast but definite number of God’s people, and by God’s power, none of them will be lost.

A RARE CASE

A RARE CASE

"I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread" (Ps 37:25).

There is not indeed an absolute promise in Scripture that no righteous person shall ever want bread, or his seed become beggars, but the Psalmist had never, during a long course of observation, known an instance of the kind. It is no doubt a very rare case in any age; but was peculiarly so under the Mosaic dispensation, the time that David lived.

There is a strong probability that the grand reason, after all that may be said on this subject, why the righteous never were known to beg bread in David's day was on the ground that God's saints were more closely allied to each other then, and never neglected to make all necessary preparations for the poor and needy of their flock, so that none of them, though they were actually needy, had need to start out begging bread. This is certainly the duty of every church to make provisions for their poor and for their ministers, so they may have no need of turning out to beg.

While our Saviour was here on earth, they always carried a bag, in which was their funds to meet the demands of the poor, and if churches would all do that way now, the time would soon come around again when many of the present rising generation could say like David, "I have been young, but now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread."

---Elder T. S. Dalton, 1895.

(Note: I have heard it said by some that none of the righteous will ever be reduced to the point of having to beg for bread, and they based their assertion on Ps 37:25, but that view, it seems to me, is not consistent with the case of Lazarus, Lu 16:20.---Bro. Ralph.)

A SAVIOUR IS ONE WHO SAVES

A SAVIOUR IS ONE WHO SAVES

Arminian, Judaizing teachers may loudly boast of their great efforts to save the lost, but I will remember the language of the heavenly messenger, who said, "Thou shalt call his name Jesus, for he shall save his people from their sins." I challenge any man to show from the Book of God that there will be a single soul saved that was not given to Christ. In other words, I affirm that Jesus Christ is the Saviour of every sinner that will be saved.

Just how an intelligent man can believe that Jesus is the Saviour of a sinner who is never saved, is a proposition too hard for me. It occurs to my mind that a Saviour is one who saves. Hence, if I am not saved, I have no Saviour. Jesus Christ is not the Saviour of an individual who is eternally lost.

Jesus Christ obtained eternal redemption for sinners before He entered the holy place; hence it is now too late to send forth evangelists to aid in this work. The blood of Christ alone is the redemption price of sinners. That precious blood was shed on the cross and eternal redemption thereby secured for every one for whom it was shed. Hence they shall all share the fruits of this glorious redemption, and rest in the bosom of their blessed Redeemer.

---Elder W. C. Arnold
Zion's Advocate, 1905

A SEEMINGLY CONTRADICTORY LIFE

A SEEMINGLY CONTRADICTORY LIFE

From a natural standpoint the life and character of a Christian seems to be contradictory. He is dead while he lives, and he is full only when he is empty; and when he is weak is the only time that he is strong. He is a stranger and a pilgrim in the world, and the world does not know him as it did not know Christ. Yet he is heir to all things. While he is poor and lowly, and thinks his case is an exception to all others, and often feels as if he dare not claim to be an heir of God, yet the blessed Saviour says, "Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."
---Elder Lemuel Potter
The Church Advocate, 1893

A SMALL HANDPRINT ON THE WALL

A SMALL HANDPRINT ON THE WALL

One day as I was picking
the toys up off the floor,
I noticed a small hand print
on the wall beside the door.

I knew that it was something
that I'd seen most every day,
but this time when I saw it there,
I wanted it to stay.

Then tears welled up inside my eyes,
I knew it wouldn't last,
for every mother knows
her children grow up way too fast.

Just then I put my chores aside
and held my children tight.
I sang to them sweet lullabies
and rocked into the night.

Sometimes we take for granted,
all those things that seem so small.
Like one of God's great treasures....
A small hand print on the wall.
--Source Unknown

A Smooth Stone Well Placed

A Smooth Stone Well Placed

Whenever the modern Goliaths disdain you and defy "you old fogy hardshells," do not let your Adam nature rise up and get the best of you. Let's try to be meek and quiet, like David, and use what God has given us with which to defend ourselves. A smooth stone rightly placed will do the job well.

A man trying to seat his little do-and-live god on the throne and to prove that all of Adam's race could be saved if they just would, quoted: "And He is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but for the sins of the whole world" (1Jo 2:2).

I said, "Propitiation, meaning atonement or satisfaction; will the whole world be saved?"

He answered quickly, "No!"

I asked, "Why not? satisfaction having been made for all. If Jesus is the atonement or satisfaction for the whole race, for the sins of everyone, how can any be sent to hell? Jesus being the satisfaction, having satisfied for the sins of every Adam sinner, what could send any of them to hell?"

His mouth was stopped. Not one word more could I get him to say.

Then another man put in, "I can tell you what will send them to hell."

"All right, let's have it."

He said, "Unbelief."

I said, "Is unbelief sin?"

He said, "Yes."

Then I quoted their text: "And He is the satisfaction for our unbelief: and not for ours only, but for the unbelief of the whole world."

"Now, what will send any to hell if all the race is meant by whole world?"

Then he was as dead as the other, and not another word could I get them to say. I worked side by side with them for years and they never mentioned that text again.---Deacon S. E. Copeland, The Primitive Baptist, 1952.

A SPECIAL MESSAGE

A SPECIAL MESSAGE
From Elder J. R. Haymon
Merryville, Louisiana

   Well, here it is a few days after Christmas and I am just now getting to this, although I have been wanting to do this so much.

   It has been my desire to let each one of you know, in some way, what your prayers have meant to me through this spell of sickness that I’ve had. I’ve been gone from home for three months and I got home on the Thursday before Christmas, but I was too weak to try to get a message to you. Today, I take this opportunity.

   It would be almost impossible for me to send a card of thanks to everyone that has been so good and so thoughtful. We got home and we had 87 messages on our answering machine from kind people all over the country, and especially the Primitive Baptists who have been my very special friends. The only way I know how to thank you and to let each of you know and to give each of you a Christmas card, is to put this message in as many of our church papers that will print it. I intend to send this same statement to Brother Mark, Brother Herman, Brother Pat Young, and to the Sweet Banner of Love, and all the papers of all the friends that I’ve had throughout the world.

   I did not know that I had so many friends, yet during all of this you have all come through, even those of other religions and other faiths have called us and told us they were praying for us. And I believe that God answers their prayers as well as He does ours. I know that he does, I don’t have to just believe it. I KNOW that he answers their prayers and I know that it is the prayers and the Saints that have brought me thus far.

   I have a testimony that I want to share with you. I don’t know how many of you have had some bad, bad news that you, more than apt, thought it was the worst news you would ever have. I was called one morning about five o’clock in the morning and was told that my sweet mother had gone home. I thought that was probably the worst news that I would ever have in my life, but, you know, that wasn’t bad news. My mama went to heaven to be with the Lord. It was what she had longed for all of her life.

   Well, when I was there, coming to in that ICU, those young ladies would gather around me and they would ask me questions and I noticed that I was having to repeat myself, over and over again. And I said, “Ladies, I’m talking as clear as I know how. Why do I have to repeat myself to you?” And they said, “Mr. Haymon, you had a stroke and your voice is so impaired that we can’t understand you.”

   No, Brethren and Sisters, that is the worst news I have ever had in my life. Oh, I cried out, “Lord, it’s all over! I’ll never preach again.” I thought I’m too uneducated to write out my messages and if you can’t understand me from the pulpit there is no point in me being there. So, I cried out, “Oh, Heavenly Father, don’t take this away from me.”

   I realized then that we should never criticize the gift that God has given us, no matter how small we may think it is. We need to thank Him for it. Now, I can talk again, although my strength is not what I would like it to be, but I’m getting stronger everyday.

   I would personally like to express my heartfelt thanks to my three children, who, when Daddy really needed them, they all three hovered around me and held out their arms and let me know that they were there and anything I needed, all three of them are there.

   I have a special thanks to my little daughter who took off from her job and didn’t draw a paycheck but carried us to Dallas, Texas, and there drove for us and took care of her Mama while I was down, and then took care of her Daddy. Not only her, but her kind husband and my grandchildren that all called and all took their turns in talking to their PawPaw just as much as he could talk. My special thanks will never be enough. There will never be enough said to thank my two daughters-in-laws, who are no longer daughters-in-laws now but have become daughters. Now I have four daughters—the daughter of my blood, my two daughters-in-law, and another young lady who has taken care of us and tried to keep our medicine straight for us and her children call me Paw Paw. And she calls me Dad and it makes me feel ten-feet tall. My special thanks to Roseanne Halliday and to her two children, Keegan and Brianna, who are just like my own special little grandchildren. They came to be with us on Christmas Eve and I realized that night that if they had not been there, then part of the family would have been missing.

   Special thanks to everyone that I can think of and if I have missed you and left you out, then please forgive this poor boy for honest mistake; I just do not remember as well as I use to.
   God bless you all and thank you so much for your kindness. We love you so very much.

  In Christian Love
  Elder J. R. & Sister Estelle Haymon
   (We are thankful to hear that Elder Haymon is doing better and pray the Lord will continue to bless him, both in health and to preach the gospel with its sweet message of God’s Sovereign Grace—Editor Elder Larry Wise)

A Summary of the Kings of Israel and Judah

A Summary of the Kings of Israel and Judah
By Hulen Chambers

Introduction and First Kings

After the Israelites entered Canaan, each tribe was given an area in which to settle except for the tribe of Levi, which was appointed certain cities to live in. Israel had been under the authority of judges rather than the rule of kings. However, the people appealed to Samuel to anoint a king like the other nations had. As a result, Saul was anointed the first king of Israel and reigned approximately forty years.i

i Michael L Gowens, Understanding Your Bible, page 71

Saul became very jealous of David after David slew Goliath and on several occasions attempted to kill David but was unsuccessful. Saul eventually committed suicide by falling on his sword in battle to prevent the Philistines from killing him.

David was then anointed king of the house of Judah(2Sa 2:4) at Hebron and ruled as king in Hebron for seven and a half years. While Ishbosheth, a son of king Saul, was made king over Israel and reigned two years. Because of this, there was war between the house of Saul and the house of David.

Ultimately, Ishbosheth was slain and all Israel came to David and anointed him king over the entirety of Israel and he reigned thirty-three years in Jerusalem.(2Sa 5:3) All together, David reigned 40 years. It is interesting to note that there were two kingdoms, Judah and Israel, even before the division which occurred of the 12 tribes after Solomon's reign ended.

King David made Solomon, his son with Bathsheba who had been the wife of Uriah the Hittite, king over all Israel, to reign in his place.(1Ki 1:39) King Solomon did evil in the sight of God(1Ki 11:6) and reigned forty years. After his death, the ten northern tribes rebelled and set up a separate kingdom, Israel, ruled by Jeroboam with its capital in Shechem.(1Ki 12:1) Kings of Israel later reigned in Samaria. From Solomon's death, his son Rehoboam ruled Judah in Jerusalem.

Kings of Judah in Order

1. Rehoboam – Son of Solomon.(1Ki 14:21) He reigned 17 years and did evil in the sight of God. His oppression of the Israelite empire resulted in the division of the Kingdom.

2. Abijah (Abijam) – Son of Rehoboam. Reigned 3 years. Did evil in God's sight. Cause of death is unknown.(1Ki 15:2)

3. Asa – Son of Abijah. Ruled Judah for forty-one years. Did what was right in God's eyes. Died with a disease of the feet.(1Ki 15:10)

4. Jehoshaphat – Son of Asa. Reigned twenty-five years. Did right in the eyes of God. He re-solidified the peace that had ended between Israel and Judah.(1Ki 22:42; 2Ch 20)

5. Jehoram – First son of Jehoshaphat. Reigned eight years. He did evil in God's sight and died with a disease of the intestines (bowels). He was married to Athaliah, who ruled five years as queen of Judah.(2Ch 21:5)

6. Ahaziah – Son of Jehoram and Athaliah. Ruled one year. Died from injuries of battle.(2Ch 22)

7. Athaliah – She reigned five years and did evil in God's sight. She was the daughter of Ahab and granddaughter of Omri, wicked kings of Israel. She attempted to destroy the Royal seed in Judah. Joash, son of Ahaziah, was hidden six years and was made king to replace her. She was then killed by orders of Jehoida the Priest.(2Ki 11:1-3)

8. Joash (Jehoash) – Son of king Ahaziah of Judah. He was seven years old when he began to reign and did right in the eyes of God. He reigned forty years. He was assassinated.(2Ki 11:12)

9. Amaziah – Son of Joash. Reigned twenty-nine years. Did right in God's eyes, yet not like David because the high places were not taken away.( 2Ki 14:1-2)

10. Uzziah (Azariah) – Son of Amaziah.( 2Ch 12:1-4)  Was sixteen when he began to reign. Did what was right in God's sight. Reigned fifty-two years. God smote him with leprosy when he attempted to burn incense in the temple. He was a leper until his death. His son Jotham ruled in his place.(2Ki 15:1-4)

11. Jotham – Son of Uzziah. Reigned sixteen years. Did right in God's eyes. He was twenty when he began to reign.(2Ch 27:1)

12. Ahaz – Son of Jotham. He was twenty years old when he began to reign and reigned sixteen years. He did that which was not right in the sight of the Lord since he sacrificed and burnt incense in the high places, and on the hills, and under every green tree.(2Ki 16:1-5)

13. Hezekiah – Son of Ahaz. He was twenty-five years old when he began to reign and reigned twenty-nine years. He did that which was right in the sight of the Lord. He trusted in the Lord God of Israel, so that after him was none like him among all the kings of Judah, nor any that were before him.(2Ki 18:1)

14. Manasseh – He was the son of Hezekiah but did evil in God's sight. He was twelve years old when he began to reign and reigned fifty-five years. He shed innocent blood very much, till he had filled Jerusalem from one end to another.(2Ki 21:1)

15. Amon – Son of Manasseh. He was twenty-two years old when he began to reign and reigned two years. He did evil in the sight of the Lord by walking in all the ways of his father Manasseh. He was slain by his servants in his own house.(2Ki 21:19)

16. Josiah – Son of Amon. He was eight years old when he began to reign and reigned thirty-one years. He did right in the eyes of the Lord. He initiated reforms, renovated the temple which resulted in the recovery of the Law of God.(2Ki 22:1)

17. Jehoahaz – Son of Josiah. He was twenty-three years old when he began to reign and reigned three years. He did evil in God's sight. He was taken captive by the king of Egypt, carried to Egypt, and remained there until he died. The king made Eliakim the son of Josiah king and changed his name to Jehoiakim.

18. Jehoiakim – He was twenty-five years old when he began to reign and reigned eleven years. He did evil in God's sight. He became the servant of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon for three years, then turned and rebelled against him. During his reign was the first Babylonian siege of Jerusalem (in which Daniel and the three Hebrews were carried to Babylon).(Da 1; 2Ki 23:31)

19. Jehoiachin – Son of Jehoiakim. He was eighteen years old when he began to reign and reigned three months. He did what was evil in God's sight. The king of Babylon besieged in Jerusalem a second time, took him and all Jerusalem captive, and carried them away to Babylon. The king of Babylon made Mattaniah, his uncle, king instead and changed his name to Zedekiah.(2Ki 24:8)

20. Zedekiah – He was twenty-one years old when he began to reign and reigned for eleven years and did evil in God's sight. He was allowed to continue to rule Judah by Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon. It was during his reign that Jerusalem was besieged a third and final time by Nebuchadnezzar, wherein Judah was taken into Babylonian bondage. In 586 BC, Jerusalem was burned, its walls and temple destroyed and left in ruins.(2Ki 24:18)

Final note – The downfall of this nation was due to their falling away from serving their Great God of their Fathers and worshiping false gods.

Kings of Israel in Order

1. Jeroboam – First king of Israel after the kingdom was divided. Son of Nebat. He reigned over Israel twenty-two years and did evil in God's sight.(1Ki 12:20

2. Nadab – Son of Jeroboam. Reigned two years and did evil in the sight of the Lord. He was killed by Baasha in a revolt.( 1Ki 15:25)

3. Baasha – Son of Ahijah. Reigned twenty-four years. He did evil in the Lord's sight and walked in the way of Jeroboam.(1Ki 15:33)

4. Elah – Son of Baasha. He reigned two years. He was killed by Zimiri.(1Ki 16:6-8)

5. Zimiri – He reigned seven days and did evil. He burned the king's house over himself and died.(1Ki 16:10-15)

6. Omri – He reigned twelve years and did evil in the sight of the Lord.(1Ki 16:25)

7. Ahab – Son of Omri. He reigned twenty-two years and did evil in the sight of the Lord. He married Jezebel who served and worshiped Baal. King Ahab did more to provoke the Lord than all the kings before him.

8. Ahaziah – Son of Ahab. He was twenty-two years old when he began to reign and reigned two years. He did evil in the sight of the Lord. He fell through a lattice in his upper chamber and was injured but never recovered. His mother was Athaliah.(1Ki 22:53)

9. Jehoram (Joram) – He was the brother of Aheziah and son of Ahab. He did evil in the sight of the Lord, reigning for twelve years. He combined forces with two kings of Judah to defeat king Mesha of Moab. He was killed by Jehu who then ruled Israel.(2Ki 3:1)

10. Jehu – Son of Jehoshaphat. He reigned twenty-eight years. Elisha sent a prophet to anoint him king over Israel to smite Ahab and his house, including Jezebel, to avenge the blood of God's servants the prophets.

He killed Jehoram, Ahaziah and Jezebel, all of Ahab's sons (seventy in all), all his great men, his kinsfolk and priests until none were left.(2Ki 10:11)

11. Jehoahaz – Son of Jehu. He reigned seventeen years and did evil in the sight of the Lord.(2Ki 10:35; 13:12)

12. Joash (Jehoash) – Son of Jehoahaz. He did evil in the sight of the Lord. He reigned sixteen years.(2Ki 13:10)

13. Jeroboam II – Son of Joash. He reigned forty-one years and did evil in the sight of the Lord. He was assassinated.(2Ki 13:13; 14:24)

14. Zachariah – Son of Jeroboam II. He reigned six months and did evil in the sight of the Lord. He was slain by Shallum, who ruled Israel in his stead.(2Ki 14:29; 15:8)

15. Shallum – Son of Jabesh. He reigned one month and was killed by Menahem who reigned in his stead.(2Ki 15:10-13)

16. Menahem – Son of Gadi. He reigned ten years doing evil in the sight of the Lord.(2Ki 15:17-18)

17. Pekahiah – Son of Menahem. He reigned two years and did evil in the sight of the Lord. He was killed by Pekah who ruled in his stead.(2Ki 15:22-23)

18. Pekah – Son of Remaliah. He reigned twenty years, doing evil in the sight of the Lord.(2Ki 15:27)

19. Hoshea – Son of Elah. He slew king Pekah and reigned in his stead, doing evil in the sight of the Lord. He reigned nine years. He was shut up in prison by the king of Assyria, who besieged Samaria and took Israel into captivity.(2Ki 15:30; 17:1)

Some Historical Notes

In studying the kings (and queen) of Judah and Israel, several facts surfaced that are important to remember. Listed below are a few of those I noted.

1. Of the nineteen kings of Israel (after the split into the northern Kingdom of Israel and southern Kingdom of Judah), none were said to have “done right in the sight of the Lord as David did.”

2. From the beginning of Jeroboam's reign until Israel was taken into bondage by the Assyrians, Israel's Kingdom lasted two hundred and twenty eight years, seven months, and seven days and ended in 722 BC.

3. Of the nineteen kings and one queen of Judah, they had eight kings who did right in the sight of the Lord. Two of these kings, Joash and Amaziah, did right but not like David their father and failed to take away the high places.

4. Judah's Kingdom lasted three hundred and sixty four years, which was one hundred and thirty six years longer than Israel. They were taken into bondage and Jerusalem burned by the Babylonians in 586 BC.

5. Some kings of both Israel and Judah had common names of kings of the other Kingdom, such as Jehoram, Ahaziah, Joash, and Jehoahaz. This can be confusing unless one is careful to check who the said king's parents were.

It is very understandable why God suffered these two Kingdoms to come to ruin from their sinful ways and failing to worship Him and keep His commandments.

A Sure Test

A Sure Test

The signification of a word may be determined, if there be any question as to its meaning, by putting its supposed synonyms in its place in a sentence where the word is correctly used. Take the word baptism, and suppose there is some doubt in regard to its real meaning as used in the Scriptures. Suppose we wish to determine whether its meaning is to sprinkle, to pour, or to immerse. This can be done by substituting these supposed meanings for the word baptism in any text. That supposed meaning which does not destroy the meaning of the text is the true meaning. We will take the 12th verse of the second chapter of Colossians: “Buried with him in baptism.” Now, “Buried with him in sprinkling,” and “Buried with him in pouring,” would both destroy the sense of the passage, while “Buried with him in immersion,” would not. Hence immersion is the true meaning of baptism in this text. The same test may be made by taking Ro 6:4. The word immersion may be inserted instead of the word baptism in any passage found in the New Testament, and the sense will not be destroyed.

—Elder John R. Daily, From Zion’s Advocate, October 1900.

A SYSTEM THAT WILL NEVER SAVE ANYONE

A SYSTEM THAT WILL NEVER SAVE ANYONE

Those who preach that God has done all that He intends to do for the sinner in providing a Saviour, and now requires the sinner to make the start, preach a system that will never save a sinner who is enmity against God. The very thing to be done in the start is to change the mind from enmity to friendship, from hatred to love, and the sinner can no more do that than he can create a world.

This change is not produced by commands, arguments, threats or exhortations.  If one were sensible that another hated him he would not think of trying to induce him to love him by commanding him to do so, or by arguing the expediency of it, or by threatening him with punishment for his hatred, or by exhorting him to love. The fallacy of all this is apparent to all thinking minds.

While God commands all to love Him, and shows the best of reasons why they should, and threatens those who continue in a state of hatred with everlasting destruction, He seeks not to produce the necessary change by these means.  Those who are in the flesh are never exhorted to get into the Spirit.  Those who are enmity against Him are never exhorted to change that enmity into love.  The natural are never exhorted to become spiritual or to perform spiritual service.

The friendship and love of those who are friends to Jesus and really love Him did not originate with them. Their loving Him is not the cause of His loving them.  The very reverse is true.  They love Him because He first loved them.  Their friendship did not win His, but His friendship won theirs.  They were enmity against Him till He shed abroad His love in their hearts.  Thus the enmity was driven out and love was implanted.  For this reason Jesus says, "Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you."  It is by this means that all who ever become the friends of Jesus are brought into this blessed friendship. 

—Elder John R. Daily   Zion’s Advocate, 1903

A Testimony of Change

 A Testimony of Change:

by Bro. Marlon Dunn

Note: Bro. Marlon is a member of Bethlehem PBC, Echola, AL. where Elder Tim McCool is pastor.  The following is his testimony of he and his wife’s change to the Primitive Baptist.  

     In the year 2014, my wife and I have become believers of the truth of salvation by grace alone.  Through the teachings of the “Old Baptist” or Primitive Baptists and through the Holy Spirit, this has been revealed to us!  My background of 52 years before this time was all spent in one Southern Baptist Church where I professed the belief of Jesus Christ as my Lord and eternal salvation at a young age.

      Growing from a young child to a worker in this church, I was a leader of younger children up to high school age.  This was my passion.  I led Sunday School, R.A. programs, small groups, bible studies, etc., and also served on committees that helped run the church.

      Through this work I was trying to instruct these young people and others on eternal salvation.  My thinking was that the gospel of Jesus Christ was for the unbeliever and the eternally lost.  I have been married 30 years and raised a family of two children under the doctrine of the Southern Baptists.  The years pressed on in my life and many times I searched the scriptures for answers to thoughts that would come to me, sometimes as I woke from sleep in the early morning.

      I will give a few examples of these thoughts:

    What is the responsibility of a deacon to the church?
    What is the teaching about stewardship and debt with regard to church finances?
    What programs should be initiated and supported by the church?

      These are examples where I could not find scripture to support the way that things were handled and, after 52 years, I decided that my family should search outside of this church for answers.  My wife and I began to visit many other churches and denominations.  We found that basically all of these were operated the same way as what we were accustomed to.  I had a discussion on this with an old friend.  We were asked to visit with the Primitive Baptist.

      From the first visit I heard God’s word preached and simply explained.  The preacher would make a point that was no more than the scripture said.  This was a draw to me.  It was a big change and it came to me as a shock and awakening.  I took the teaching and doctrines each week and studied over them, over and over and over!  Through this I found them scripturally correct in my own studies.  This was not quick and easy, as much of this was strange to me.

      The teachings on the doctrine of grace became understandable to me when I was able to see a true difference in eternal salvation throughout the scriptures.  This has taken place in about an 8 month period of time before we joined the Primitive Baptist Church.

      I must say that this doctrine and truth in the scriptures is a treasure to me.  I thank my Lord Jesus Christ for enabling me to see, understand and be a part of it.  My brothers and sisters of the Primitive Baptist are of the most compassionate and loving people that I have ever been around.  The fellowship with them is a great thing!

      Brother Marlon Dunn

      Bethlehem PBC, Echola, AL.

Pastor’s Note:  Thanks to Bro. Marlon for writing his experience at my request.  To this I say a hearty “Amen!”   Elder Tim McCool, pastor, Bethlehem PBC

A TRAIL OF BLOOD

A TRAIL OF BLOOD

It is easy to trace the history of the primitive church from the New Testament times through the dark ages by their path of persecution, blood, and martyrdom. They were hunted as sheep for the slaughter, and thousands and tens of thousands suffered martyrdom for their loyalty to Christ, and for refusing to affiliate with humanly devised institutions and societies, or fellowship them. When Luther and Calvin commenced their reformation, our brethren hoped that they (Luther and Calvin) were going to throw off the superstitious and unscriptural institutions of their mother church; but as soon as they got power, our brethren were persecuted and martyred by them because they would not take their unscriptural doctrines and practices, and institutions which they (Luther and Calvin) brought out of their mother church with them.

---Elder Gregg M. Thompson, 1888.

A VOW FOR NEW YEAR’S

A VOW FOR NEW YEAR’S

Every hour and every minute
Has a New Year’s Day tucked in it
And each single one of these
Is packed with possibilities—
Possibilities of pleasure,
Of sharing with some friend some treasure,
Of making a “Good morning” cheery—
Making a good one from a dreary—
Of shutting tight the lips to hide
A bit of gossip safe inside
Instead of letting it out
To roam about and maybe do
More harm than you would like it to.
Let us take a little vow,
Since it is the New Year now,
To be more kind, more brave, more gay
This year and make each single day
That comes a model New Year’s Day!
   --Mary Carolyn Davies

(From “Poems That Touch The Heart”)

A WORD TO SINGERS

A WORD TO SINGERS (For The Poor - 1980, February)

Copied from American Baptist Magazine January, 1819

The laudable exertions which are making, to promote and improve sacred psalmody, must he highly pleasing to such as delight in this interesting part of public worship.

The songs of Zion are calculated to give the most exquisite pleasure to a pious mind, when judiciously performed. The solemn and cheerful Airs, by turns melt and elevate the soul. The surest way to produce these effects, is to "sing with the Spirit, and with the understanding also."

A YEAR UNTRIED BEFORE ME LIES

A YEAR UNTRIED BEFORE ME LIES

A year untried before me lies.
What it shall bring of strange surprise,
Of joy, or grief, I cannot tell;
But God my Father knoweth well

I make no concern of mine,
But leave it all with Love divine.
The sun may shed no light by day,
No stars at night illumine my way.

My soul shall still have no affright
Since God is all my life and light.
Though all the earthly lights grow dim,
He walks in light who walks with Him.

No ill can come but He can cure,
No word doth all of good insure:
He’ll see me through the journey’s length,
For daily need give daily strength!

Source unknown

ABORTION AND THE GOSPEL

by Elder Joe Holder

 

see PB: Ac 19:27    F4 and search for "The bible does"

ABORTION, SEPT. 11, 2001, AND SOCIAL SECURITY

24

 

There is nothing in my lifetime that has alarmed our American people the way the events since September 11th have, but I want us to look at this entire affair from another perspective.

 

Let me ask you this. How alarmed do you believe our people would be, if that same thing, or something very much like it, were to happen every day? Suppose it happened once a day, every day, week after week, and year after year. Do you believe we would ever get used to it? Or do you think we would be absolutely horrified by it? Do you think we could ever get used to the thought of thousands of people being slaughtered on a daily basis?

 

The fact is that the heart of man is so blinded by sin, that people can get used to almost anything, depending on how it is presented. It depends to a very great extent on how the matter is presented by the news media.

 

In 1973 the Supreme Court of the United States handed down a decision, which said that if an expectant mother wanted to destroy her unborn baby, no state government had the right to interfere. Since 1973, abortionists have destroyed about four thousand unborn babies-unborn human beings-every day.

 

On average, they have destroyed that number of babies every day, day after day, week after week, and year after year. They destroy more lives every day than were killed on the one day of September 11th. By now almost forty million babies have been aborted. Americans take the slaughter of unborn babies in stride, at the same time we are outraged at what happened on September 11th. We have been brainwashed into thinking there is a difference.

 

They tell us the baby is not human; it is only a fetus. Of course it is a fetus; it is a soon-to-be-born human fetus.

 

God told Jeremiah, "Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee, and before thou camest forth out of the womb, I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations," Jer 1:5. God says that unborn fetus was Jeremiah, before it came forth out of the womb; it was not some indefinable something that might possibly someday become Jeremiah.

 

David said, "Behold, I was shapen in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me," Ps 51:5. He says his mother conceived him; she did not conceive something that might possibly someday become David. He was David from the very moment he was conceived.

 

But in 1973, in the Roe v Wade decision, our Supreme Court decided God was wrong. David’s mother did not conceive him; she conceived something that might become David. God did not know Jeremiah before he was born; he knew something that might become Jeremiah.

 

In the first place, it is not the place of the Supreme Court, or any other court, to make law. That is the job of the legislative branch of government. It is the job of the courts to interpret the law. But in 1973 the Supreme Court of the United States took it upon themselves to make law. They laid down the law to the various states, and said every woman has the right to murder her unborn child, or have it murdered, and no state has the right to interfere. It has been 28 years since Roe v Wade, and since that day, about the same number of children has been killed every day as those who were killed on September 11th.

 

About four thousand unborn babies, unborn human beings, are destroyed every day, and the news media talks as if anybody who is alarmed about it is part of some lunatic fringe.

 

America has let it happen. For almost three decades we have let it happen.

 

After people became hardened to the thought of aborting babies, somebody came along with a process called partial birth abortion. In partial birth abortion the abortionist manipulates the baby so it is born feet first. It is delivered all but the head. Then the abortionist uses a scissors-like instrument to punch a hole in the back of the baby’s head. A suction tube is passed through the hole; the baby’s brains are vacuumed out; the skull is crushed; and the baby is delivered dead. It is hard to imagine anything more wicked, anything more uncivilized. That is something you might expect from cannibals and head-hunters, not here in civilized America.

 

Twice Congress has tried to outlaw the practice, and both times the President vetoed the ban. Those who tried to outlaw the practice could not find enough votes in the United States Senate to override the veto. It is distressing to know that our president, and more than one third of our Senators were convinced partial birth abortion is a good idea, and it ought to have the protection of the law.

 

I am appalled at the horrible depravity of those men who were willing to fly airliners into the World Trade Center. I am appalled at the depravity of Supreme Court Justices who would legalize the destruction of 40 million babies. And I am appalled at the depravity of United States Senators who advocate vacuuming the brains out of innocent babies.

 

I realize that many of our people have heard the abortion question debated, until they don’t want to hear any more. Most people have made up their minds, and they had rather drop the subject. But you and I are going to pay the price for all those aborted babies. Our children and grandchildren are going to pay the price, and they are going to pay in ways few people seem to have imagined. At least, I never hear people talking about the high price this nation is already beginning to pay. Long ago, God said, "Be not deceived, God is not mocked; for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap," Ga 6:7. That statement is as true today as it was when it was first written. It is true for individuals, and it is true for nations. I want to look at just one problem abortion is already bringing on this nation. It is a problem whose dimensions our elected leaders seem totally unwilling to discuss.

 

We constantly hear people talk on television about the condition of Social Security. We are forever being told that Social Security is in trouble. They name various dates when the system will go broke. But I have never yet heard a news commentator who has the nerve to tell us why Social Security is going broke. It should not take a rocket scientist to figure it out; but they don’t dare say it. For years we’ve heard the myth about the Social Security Trust Fund, about the lock box as they like to call it. The fact is, there never has been a lock box. Social Security has always been a pass through system; present wage earners have always supported present retirees.

 

So why is Social Security going broke? Since 1973, when the Supreme Court handed down the Roe v Wade Decision, Americans have aborted babies at the rate of 1.5 million per year. Or to say it another way, we have aborted future wage earners at the rate of some 1.5 million per year. We have done that for 28 years now. That adds up to more than 40 million people-40 million people who will never be in the work force. They will never pay into the Social Security system.

 

By this date, some 10 million of those 40 million people would be in the labor force earning wages, and paying taxes into Social Security. There can be no doubt that Social Security is in trouble; but there is nothing wrong with Social Security that another 10 million wage earners paying into the system would not solve.

 

That is the reason Social Security is going broke; and that is the reason it cannot be fixed.

 

Millions of wage earners retire out of the labor force-and start collecting checks-every year. And there are some 1.5 million wage earners who do not enter the work force to replace them. Those wage earners are dead. They will never be in the labor force. They will never pay into the system.

 

In another 20 years there will be 40 million wage earners missing from the labor force. Those 40 million people will never pay into the system. You cannot continue any system for long, if you constantly eliminate those people who pay the bills. Our abortionists seem never to have figured that out.

 

In 1935, when Social Security began, there were about 16 wage earners for every retiree. Today the figure is a little better than 2 to 1. The number of retirees continues to rise, and the number of wage earners continues to shrink. At some point the burden becomes an unbearable load for the few people still working.

 

But that is not the entire problem. About the same time there are not enough wage earners to support the system, there will also not be enough working people to support nursing homes either. Both require money; there has to be somebody working to pay the bills.

 

I know this is alarming, but I’m not going to say, "I don’t want to alarm you." I do want to alarm you. I think that sometimes we preachers get the idea this matter of preaching is a popularity contest. I quit worrying a long time ago about being a popular preacher. I have learned I’m never going to be everybody’s favorite preacher. I am not sure I will ever be anybody’s favorite preacher. But God doesn’t call preachers to run popularity contests. He calls us to preach the truth, and sometimes preaching the truth involves identifying sin and warning against it.

 

But back to the subject at hand. There was a time when people had big families. When Social Security began, it was very common for families to have five or six children; some families had many more. Those children provided most of the security for their parents in their old days.

 

More than that, most people grew up, lived, and died within a few miles of where they were born. They were related to half the people in the community. They had parents, and children, and brothers, and sisters, and brothers-in-law, and sisters-in-law, and uncles, and aunts, and nieces, and nephews, and cousins, in the neighborhood.

 

If anybody got in distress, they usually had enough kinfolks in the neighborhood to take care of them. Today, our families are much smaller, and they are scattered all over the country. Most of our people live in large cities and towns. We do not have the support system our parents’ generation had. If we get in distress, we would be hard pressed to find help without looking to some government agency. And abortion is steadily crippling and destroying those agencies.

 

People are moving away to find work, and our families are scattered all over the country. Can you imagine the cataclysm that is going to face this country when Social Security really does get in trouble?

 

It is fairly certain there will always be Social Security. After all this time, Congress would not dare to eliminate those monthly checks. They just won’t be big enough to buy anything. When inflation comes back, it will come back with a vengeance, and it will not take long for inflation to eat up those little checks. They will always let you retire, but they will keep pushing the retirement age back, until, before you can start drawing a check, you will likely be too feeble to work anyway. By the time abortion has so crippled Social Security that it cannot do the job, and nursing homes are either full, or out of business, the social explosion that will rock this nation will make the World Trade Center bombing look like a firecracker.

 

We are already seeing another aspect of the problem. There are only three things the social engineers can do. One, they can lower Social Security benefits. Two, they can push back the retirement age. And three, they can throw open the borders, and invite immigrants to come in to take the jobs, earn the wages, and pay the taxes.

 

If Social Security is going to survive, in any form, somebody will have to fill the jobs, and pay the taxes. Those taxes will never be paid by those people who have been aborted.

 

In spite of all the protests to the contrary, our borders are already being quietly opened; immigrants are already fanning out across the nation.

Abraham's Daring Intercession - Genesis 18

Abraham's Daring Intercession - Ge 18
Written by Ben Winslett  

Abraham's intercession to God over the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah was both daring and in humility.
 
He was daring in that he would approach God with such conviction by asking God to spare the cities for the righteous' sake, even if there be as few as ten. In this, he pleads in accord with God's Good and Holy nature, by saying "shall not the Judge of all the Earth do right?"
 
Yet, this petition was also very humble. Each time Abraham begged the Lord, he confessed his inadequacy to judge the situation with statements such as "I...which am but dust and ashes" and "Let not the Lord be angry, and I will speak."
 
By the work of Christ, we may also come so boldly unto the throne of grace today, to find grace to help in time of need. Let's start by asking forgiveness and begging his mercies on our churches and this great land.
 
Ge 18

ABSOLUTE PREDESTINATION & GOD’S LONGSUFFERING

In Jer 27:18 God had said that if they be prophets, and if the word of the LORD be with them, let them now make intercession to the LORD of hosts, that the vessels which are left in the house of the LORD, and in the house of the king of Judah, and at Jerusalem, go not to Babylon. Then in Jer 27:22 God says "They shall be carried to Babylon, and there shall they be until the day that I visit them, saith the LORD; then will I bring them up, and restore them to this place."

208

 

He had said in Jer 27:18 that they should pray that they not go into Babylon and then in Jer 27:22, God said that they would. I cannot imagine God telling them to pray that it not happen which was His desire and yet He had ordained that they would go into Babylon.

208

 

This and other texts can be used to show that God knows all things, but does not by that knowledge cause them to happen. In this His sovereignty is unaffected. Because of His foreknowledge He has intervened when He desires to do so and in times when He does not intervene He is longsuffering.

224

 

God cannot both be longsuffering and also be pleased at what comes to pass. To be longsuffering means to allow the situation to take place and even continue even though it is against what He desires. When God is longsuffering, He is not causing what is happening, else it would not be longsuffering to Him, but would be what He desires.

224

 

When God is longsuffering it is by definition a circumstance that God is allowing to happen, but not one He desires or has caused. He suffers long because His creation has disobeyed and walked in paths contrary to His desire. He neither desires this contrary walk nor causes it, but rather allows it for the time being. But he brings things to pass so that in the end His Sovereign will is fullfilled. This is seen in Jer 27:18-22. It was not His desire that the vessels be taken to Babylon. Nevertheless, God suffered it to be so for the time being, but brought it to pass that they would be returned at a later point in time.

224

 

Let us ponder on God’s longsuffering, and we will find that while His Sovereignty is never in question, He chooses to allow things for the short term, but always brings things to pass in the long term that fullfills His desire.

224

 

 I do not believe in a "bare allowance," God overrules sin, nothing is outside of His control. But within the scope of that sovereign and total control there are events which God does not initiate neither did He predestinate those events. Those events are initiated by man. Should those events reach the limit which God has determined in His eternal counsel, then those events are restrained by God so that God’s overall control is not breached. I do not therefore believe that man’s will can be said to be completely free. Man’s will may be considered to be free only within the boundaries that God has ordained for him. The boundaries of the freedom of man’s will may not extend beyond the boundaries of God’s overall control. But within the boundaries that have been established for man, man may make his own choices and any evil or sinful consequences of those choices may not be charged to our Holy and Righteous God. They are chargeable to the man who made them. If some freedom of the will of man is not admitted, then men are but automatons and can not be charged for what they do as they can do no other than what they do. If total freedom of man’s will be true then God can no longer be said to have control of man’s destiny for His will would be subjected to man’s. Neither should it be thought that God’s will is hindered even within the boundaries of man’s will. He may in His providence graciously intervene at His divine prerogative into the events and affairs of men as He chooses.

209

ABSOLUTE PREDESTINATION & PRAYER

Remark:
The fatalist who believe that God actively causes everything that occurs can’t offer a credible reason for prayer. 

Reply:
1. God has decreed all things that come to pass, even our prayers.
2. Yes _____ even our prayers. The Purpose of prayer is not to change the will of God.
3. The Reason we Pray is because God revealed in his word that we should pray, and give him the glory!

Remark:
If God predestinates all things, and that includes prayer, the real question the brother carefully evaded is why does He then command us to pray?  If He predestinates our prayers, there is no need to command it.  It will happen, right?

ABSOLUTE PREDESTINATION by Primitive Baptist's prior to 1900?

     SEE PBtop: Reply to Conditional Time Salvation by 517    F3 & search for "Elders of the past"

 

     May I respectfully offer a "check and balance" to the suggestion that PB’s prior to 1900 tended toward what has since become known as "absolutism?" Perhaps a brief recap of the historical context will demonstrate why so many brethren around the turn of the 20th century found it necessary to make the fine distinctions between eternal and temporal salvation.

 

 After the deaths of Beebe and Trott, "absolutism" (i.e. double predestination) made inroads into certain sections of the country primarily via the influence of the print media. Primarily along the eastern seaboard, churches struggled to survive the consequences of these ideas. As the concept of "passive obedience" gained momentum & a spirit of divisiveness grew within the churches, brethren who once appeared to tolerate the terminology of men like Beebe and Trott, found it increasingly necessary to clarify their respective views and distance themselves from what were perceived to be extreme positions.

 

 Sylvester Hassell wrote in The Gospel Messenger, June 1897: It cannot be denied by any informed and honest man that such Scriptures as the following are conditional: "If His children forsake My law, I will visit their transgression with the rod, nevertheless My loving-kindness will I not utterly take from Him." {Ps 89:30-33} If ye be willing and obedient, ye shall eat the good of the land; but if ye refuse and rebel, ye shall be devoured with the sword, for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it. Isa 1:19-20 If ye know these things, happy are ye if ye do them. Joh 13:17 If ye live after the flesh, ye shall die; but if ye, through the spirit, do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live. Ro 8:13 How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation? Heb 2:3 "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.." {1Jo 1:7} See also such scriptures as Le 26; De 4:29-31; 7:12-16; 11:13-32; Eze 18; 33 Not only is it certain that these Scriptures are conditional, but it is equally certain that the condition, introduced by ("if,") necessarily precedes the conclusion, which would not take place unless the condition took place first. If the conclusion in these sentences means eternal punishment, then Arminianism is true; but either the text itself or the context and other Scriptures, prove that the punishment or chastisement threatened in case of disobedience, is temporal and corrective, and not eternal and destructive, for God gives His children eternal life, and they shall never perish, and though their voluntary sins separate them from His face, nothing present or future can ever separate them from His love. {Joh 10:28-30; Heb 12; Isa 59:2; Ro 8:28-39}  Thus the conditionality of time salvation is just as certain as the truth of the eternal word of God. Baptists have always heretofore understood it so; nearly all Baptists understand it so now; and this truth is in perfect accordance with Christian experience.

 James Oliphant wrote in chapter 2 of his book,  Justification and Kindred Subjects, 1899:

 

Some of our brethren think it would be an unworthy motive for us to serve the Lord in the hope of receiving a blessing.[i]  But why are these motives put before us as an encouragement to obedience?[ii]  Take the words, ("If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love.") Would it be a sin for us to desire to abide in his love?[iii]

  Or would it show an unworthy temper if we ask, ("How can I enjoy the love of God?")[iv]  And when told that we shall abide in his love if we keep his commandments, would it be a sin for us to allow this backed away something from us?[v]  Certainly not. To say, ("We shall be blessed in obedience,") would not change the case. If we are told that precious fruits grow on a certain road, we understand that we cannot have the fruits unless we go along that road. So, if we put it this way, there is as much reason to be influenced to obedience by the hope of reward, as there is to admit that our ("time salvation") is conditional.. We gain nothing to say we are blessed in obedience. For in this way of putting it, we clearly hold that our receiving the blessing depends on our obeying. If the blessing is in obedience, it is plain that we must obey in order to enjoy it, and also that we cannot enjoy it in disobedience. But if men obey, they will receive the blessing.

 

 

Take the text in Peter, ("He that will love life and see good days") etc. Is it a sin to love life and desire good days?[vi]  Peter here urges this as an inducement to lead brethren to obey. It is a good motive and worthy for men to desire to enjoy life. Peter tells how to do this. ("Let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile. Let him eschew evil and do good. Let him seek peace and ensue it.") As a motive and an encouragement to obedience he says, ("He that will love life and see good days.") These are not the only motives, but they are some of the motives. It is not sinful to serve God and do right in order that we may see good days. Our ministers have urged this upon the people as one reason why they should obey. I have hundreds of times urged that there is sweet peace found in obedience; that we cannot have peace and rest of mind in sinful paths. Hence, we should eschew evil, seek peace, and ensue it. We should distinguish between that salvation in which we are quickened, and that which ("we work out.") God’s word does not call on us to be quickened or to be born again, but it does hundreds and thousands of times shows us it is our duty to obey. Now if obedience is of grace in the same sense that being born again is of grace, how is it that we are called on to do the one and not called on to do the other?[vii] [viii] We can scarcely read a page of God’s word that we see a command, exhortation or encouragement to obey the Lord and do right. And we may read every line in the Old and New Testament and not once find it our duty to be born again. Now if both are of grace in the same sense, why are we times without limit exhorted to do the one and scores of motives to induce us thereto, and not once exhorted to do the other. The fact is we should make a distinction here. We should either exhort everybody to be born again, or nobody to obedience, or we should make a plain, clear distinction between time salvation and eternal salvation. And as the apostles of old, we should exhort one another to love and to do good works. We should use their arguments to induce the people of God to serve the Lord and do right. The motives found in the Bible are numerous. The scriptures appeal to us from the love of God and on account of mercies received to our love of life and good days to our need and love of rest and countless motives are mentioned. We do not despise a man if we find him serving God in order to enjoy His presence and approval or for fear of falling or becoming a castaway. All these motives and scores of others are put before us. God does not deal with his children as a boy does with his marbles and say, ("When I want you in the right place, I will put you there.") His government is parental and moral and not physical.

 

 Likewise, the Fulton brethren inserted an explanatory comment on Chapter XVI, Section 3 of their confessional statement: ("We believe the Scriptures teach that there is a time salvation received by the heirs of God distinct from eternal salvation, which does depend upon their obedience. The people of God receive their rewards for obedience in this life only. We believe that the ability of the Christian is the unconditional gift of God...The act of God necessary to our regeneration must in some sense be distinguished from his act necessary to our obedience. We are never commanded to be born again, but in hundreds of places we are called on to obey. We are passive in regeneration, but in obedience we are active. Regeneration is neither a vice nor a virtue; obedience is a virtue and disobedience a vice. Regeneration is wholly independent of the will. There could be no such a thing as obedience or disobedience independent of the will. Men do not neglect to be born again, but they do neglect their duty.")

 

 Commenting on Section 5, Chapter XVI, they wrote: ("We hold, too, that conditionality is an essential element of moral government. We distinguish between God’s government of mind and his government of matter.")

 

 Throughout the 20th Century, PB’s continued to grapple with the influx of ("absolutism.") In Arkansas, the 1943 Rhodes-West Debate focused on two propositions: (1) ("The Scriptures teach that God, from the beginning, did absolutely predestinate all things, both good and evil, whatsoever comes to pass") (Rhodes affirm; West deny); (2) ("The Scriptures teach that the salvation of God’s people here in time, after regeneration, is conditional on them living up to Scriptural requirements; also, their suffering and afflictions are conditional on them not living as they are commanded") (West affirm; Rhodes deny). Elder C. H. Cayce served as Elder West’s moderator.

 

 Even today, PB’s find it hermeneutically necessary, lest we violate the law of noncontradiction in Biblical interpretation, to distinguish between those passages that affirm a monergistic, i.e. the work of one, and those that affirm a synergistic, i.e. the work of more than one, ("salvation.") In less technical terms, we believe that Scripture distinguishes between ("sonship") and ("discipleship.")

 

 When we say, therefore, that ("eternal salvation is by grace alone") we mean that God is active and the sinner is passive in every aspect of his salvation, i.e. foreknowledge, predestination, calling, justification, glorification. ("Sonship") is the work of One, from start to finish. ("Discipleship,") on the contrary, is not ("by grace alone") in the same sense that ("sonship") is by grace alone. Man is not passive in discipleship, but is accountable to God for his obedience or lack thereof. I am compelled to reject the assertion that discipleship is a monergistic dynamic, but would offer a hearty ("amen") to the sentiments expressed in a recent article by Elder Lonnie Mozingo, Jr: Although we must have grace to enable us to keep the laws, meet the conditions and perform the works required to obtain these temporal deliverances, grace does not make us do these things. If we do them, it must come from obedience. {Ro 6:16; Isa 1:19; 1Pe 1:14}

 

 I hope my explanation provides clarity to the historical context of this question concerning the extent of predestination and the need to distinguish between the unconditionality of sonship and the conditionality of discipleship. 520

 

As a matter of practice, I have ceased to use the more frequently used term, "time salvation." It appears that our folks developed this term in a futile attempt to communicate more clearly their distinction in belief from Arminian-leaning Baptists after the 1832 separation. The briefest interaction with most people outside the Primitive Baptist camp will reveal that the term confuses; it certainly doesn’t communicate anything more clearly.

Elder David Pyles has made a convincing case that Elders BeeBe and Trott developed their unique terminology with a similar desire in mind, but their terminology was not clearly understood by their own folks. David’s thesis, well documented, supports the idea that neither of these men ever intended to teach that God authored or caused sin in His predestination. Both unfortunate situations demonstrate a point that we should have learned well by now, but our humanity interferes with spiritual discernment. We should be cautious in our choice of terms. First, our terminology should stick as closely as possible to Scripture. The moment we add adjectives to Biblical terms, or substitute our own terminology and reject Biblically specific terms, we destroy any authentic effort to improve our communications.[ix]

 

 Scripture never uses the term "absolute predestination of all things." Perhaps BeeBe and Trott should have left it off, regardless of their legitimate desire to communicate our views more clearly to people outside our camp. Equally, subsequent Primitive Baptists might have been better off not introducing the terminology "time salvation." [x]  The first time that I find the term used in a significant Primitive Baptist writing is in the Fulton footnotes to the London Confession, published around the beginning of the twentieth century. I repeat; I’ve never heard a Primitive Baptist use the term "conditional time salvation." The only time I’ve heard this specific term was from someone who intended to attack a concept, not explain or clarify it. When nineteenth century and earlier Primitive Baptists intended to refer to matters related to our discipleship, they used specific Biblical terms; faith, repentance, conversion, etc. We should return to their Biblical penchant.[xi]  522

 

 {21} I agree that God did not desire, cause, or command child sacrifice and other sins. However, I do believe that he determined just how far He would allow it to go. I don’t know the reference but there is a verse that says something like...the wrath of man will praise God and the remainder of wrath he will restrain...forgive my paraphrase, but the idea is that it is God who decides how far he will allow it to go before putting an end to it. This is how we can have confidence that God will not allow us to be tempted more than we can bear. Certainly God is not tempting us, but we are tempted by our own lusts, yet God determines to restrain even that sin in us, that it will not overtake us.

" I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure." {Isa 46:9-10} 547



[i] Well, on the other hand would we dare ask him a blessing and have no hope that He would answer it? I think not. It is NOT the prayer of unbelief that saves the sick but the prayer of faith. 541

[ii] I believe the lesson given by Elder James Oliphant makes a point that it is right to desire blessings in obedience. That may not be and should not be our main reason to obey the Lord. But God has determined that rewards and punishments to be one of the motives for doing right in this present world.

I do not believe the point made by Elder Oliphant can be successful denied according to scripture and experience. 540

[iii] It is a sin if we do not desire to abide in His love. It would be a sin IMHO if we were to advocate that one can abide in His love in disobedience to His commandments. 541

[iv] What greater thing should we desire than to enjoy the love of God. Nothing that I know of. 541

[v] I don’t understand the sentence-it seems something was left out or added that makes the sense incomplete. 541

[vi] Any answer that insists that it is a sin to love life is nonsense in my eyes. I don’t understand why anyone would consider desiring bad days. 541

[vii] Unless God’s grace abounds in us we would never be willing and certainly would never be able to come to God. We would never be obedient to any commandments of God.

And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work: 2Co 9:8

He calls on us to do the works in obedience because and only because He has given us the ability to do so. He has never given one sinner the ability to spiritually rebirth himself. {viii} 541

[viii] Amen to your comments! I think Oliphant’s point is well taken. "Justification" is a great book and I highly recommend it, along with "Thoughts on the Will" to anyone.

Is this the essence of "conditional time salvation?" My recent querries have not been an effort to attack "conditional time salvation" but only to understand what is being advocated by those who use the term. I think there is reward and blessing in obedience, just as there is misery in sin. I know from experience and from scripture that it is true! I also never feel when I am blessed that it was anything I did that "earned" those blessings, but rather it was God’s gift. I even have found that my own obedience is a gift from God, since I know that if he did not give me the ability and desire to obey, I would go my own sinful way.

It is a common thought among people that we get what we deserve. But I have always felt that I’ve gotten better than I deserved. Not just in eternal blessings, but in timely blessings as well. Even when I have sinned, God has still blessed me. NOT as a reward for my sin certainly, but in spite of it, and the blessing he gave was the blessing of having the ability and desire to REPENT of those sins. That doesn’t seem to harmonize with condition time salvation, but maybe I am missing something...

I would appreciate anyone’s comments as I seek to gain a better understanding of  these profound topics. 547

[ix] I agree. I do not believe that Trott or Beebe advocated that God caused sin. Hassell attested on a few occasions that many of the disputes were only over wording and that he himself agreed with the views on predestination expressed by Silas Durand and others, including the tract "absolute predestination" by Zanchius (a swiss reformer I believe).

 In a discussion on predestination, Silas Durand commented, among other things, that "I believe that God has purposed acts to be done which are sinful and wicked in them that do them." and " Some tell me that this cannot be reconciled, that if God should purpose that to exist which he hates. I simply reply that he has done so, for he says he has."

 Hassell’s response to Durands letter contained this statement..." I thoroughly and heartily agree in the sentiment of my dear brother that there is no essential difference in doctrine between him and myself—-between our highly esteemed supralapsarian and our infralapsarian brethren," 547

[x] In reference to the discussion over whether or not the term "time salvation" should be used, I would note that in my experience it is the term "conditional time salvation" and not "time salvation" that has caused disagreement. Also, I think I partly agree that it is a disagreement with the concept more than simply a disagreement with the wording.

Furthermore, I think that since many people today associate the term salvation only with eternal consequences, it may be necessary to employ a term like "time salvation" or "temporal salvation."

I think it is easy to explain to an unbiased person the validity of a concept such as temporal salvation. It is perfectly logical and simple to understand that not all deliverances are eternal. In "the cause of God and truth" by John Gill, he uses the term "temporal salvation" and uses the concept very effectively to refute common Arminian proof-texts. I also think that though "time salvation" is American language, the concept is as old as the bible. 547

[xi] I have found great peace and doctrinal soundness among my brethren here and have not heard the termonology such as "conditional time salvation" and "absolute predestination of all things" among our brethren until recently. I agree that it is better to stick to biblical terms. That is what our preachers do and in turn we have avoided harmful extremes and divisive language. 547

Abundant Life

The abundant life is not getting us out of the world but getting the world out of us. It is realizing that Christ is in us and that He is the hope of glory. It is taking that hope out into the world as ambassadors for Christ. Society, not solitude, is the natural thing for a Christian. A believer who does not strive to seek and abide with fellow believers is not living the abundant life. "They that feared the LORD spake often one to another: and the LORD hearkened, and heard it." Jesus Himself longs for the assembly and there we find Him, singing praises to the Father. So, let us be visible in the church and let our churches be visible in the world. We are a city that is set upon a hill, not set behind the hill but on it where it can be seen. We are in the world but not of the world, therefore let the world see us and we can turn the world upside down. If you haven't been baptized then what are you waiting for? Stop eating the crumbs that fall from the table and take your seat at the table. I see a place with your name on it. If you have been baptized but stopped attending then what happened? Why will you roam from this dear peaceful home? The Spirit and the Bride say, "come." Will we refuse the Lord's Bride? Do we want to say that we stood up the Bride of Christ? Let us not refuse but let us assemble ourselves together and enjoy the blessings of the abundant life. Let us take that joy into society, the field of duty, and shine as lights of the world. It is the best thing you can do, for you, for others and for the Lord.

Elder David Montgomery

The abundant life is not the abundance of wealth but of faith. It is knowledge of God, loyalty to God, likeness to God and joy and peace in the finished work of Jesus Christ. Jesus had no beatitudes for earthly success, political power or social popularity but He did have them for meekness, hungering for righteousness, peace-making and patience. These are possessions that cannot spoil nor be stolen. Let us seek first the Kingdom of God and let God's will take us where He leads. Let things come and go according to His perfect will. Your best worth is not what your bank account amounts to but what YOU amount to. A good character weighs more heavily on God's scale than gold. Do not rejoice in the things you possess but rejoice that your names are written in Heaven. Let your soul be lifted up in that sweet understanding and let you your voice glorify the One who made it all happen. Heaven can begin on earth to those who love the Lord and follow His commandments. Heaven does not end…it just keeps looking better and better all the time. It will take all eternity to discover how good it is so let us start right now. Daily grace is a realization of eternal grace. It is a realization that we can persevere because we are preserved. If you are going through a bad time, just keep going and soon, you'll be walking about Zion. Seek the Lord’s Kingdom, enter into it and then walk about it. That is the abundant life.

Elder David Montgomery

Abundant Mercy

Audio for: Abundant Mercy

ACQUITTED AT THE BAR OF DIVINE JUSTICE

92

 

What will be the sinner’s plight when he is brought before the tribunal of Heaven to argue and debate his case with God? Can he, by acting the part of his own attorney, frame conclusive arguments to vindicate himself of his crimes against God’s holy law? Consider the following fictitious transcript of "the Grand Assize." The sinner is the accused; Satan, "the accuser of the brethren," is the prosecuting attorney; {Re 12:10; Zec 3:1} the charge is "an indictment in ten counts for offending the Judge of all the earth and His holy law." Listen, now, as the high court of heaven is called to order:

 

"The highest court in heaven and earth is now in session. The honorable and righteous ‘Judge of all the earth’ presiding."

 

PROSECUTION: Your Honor, the prosecution intends to establish with irrevocable proofs that this man is guilty of manifold transgressions against Thy holy law. In ten general counts he has offended, and under each of these several categories, he is guilty of numerous specific sins. I intend to prove that he is a hypocrite, claiming to be one of Thy people though his life is marked by various inconsistencies. In fact, by virtue of his sins, I will insist that he deserves the maximum sentence that can be imposed by the law- the ultimate death of eternal punishment. I call five witnesses to establish this case and present the evidence that will condemn this man. First, I appeal to "the Law" itself, which cannot but "tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth," for it is "spiritual, and the commandment holy, just, and good." Tell me, thou holy Law, do you know this man?

 

LAW: Yes; he has often professed to serve me and keep my statutes. {Joh 5:45} But I must tell the truth, for he has frequently violated my precepts. He has, in fact, broken every commandment from the first to the last, not necessarily in terms of external behavior, but in terms of desire and passion of heart. He has transgressed, that is "gone over" my commandments; {1Jo 3:4} he has trespassed, that is "gone beyond" my commandments, and at all times and in all circumstances, he has "come short" of measuring up to the perfect standard of the glory of God. {Ro 3:23} The first commandment alone is enough to bring him under the penal sanction of Divine justice: "Thou shalt have no other gods before me." The accused is guilty of idolatry!

 

ACCUSED: Objection, Your Honor, but I have never bowed to an idol.

 

LAW: Ah, but you have, for every covetous desire is idolatrous, a deification of self in terms of an inordinate preoccupation with personal pleasure and happiness. {Col 3:5} Further, you once thirsted for personal honor, driven by ambition for the praise of men, seeking for thyself the kind of glory that is due only to God. This too is idolatry.

 

DIVINE JUSTICE: Objection over-ruled.

 

LAW: I further confess that he is guilty of perjury, for he has "taken the name of the Lord God in vain," by virtue of the many broken promises and unfulfilled covenants he made with others. Also, he has breached that most sacred commandment on the second table against his fellow man: "Thou shalt not kill."

 

ACCUSED: Objection, Your Honor. I cannot be silent before such an outrageous charge. This accusation is unfounded. When did I, like evil Cain, take the life of my brother? I am no murderer!

 

LAW: Is not the Scripture true, "Whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment?" {Mt 5:22} And "whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer?" {1Jo 5:15} Isn’t hatred the moral equivalent of murder, that is, murder by feeling?

 

DIVINE JUSTICE: Objection over-ruled.

 

LAW: I have yet another charge to which the accused must plead guilty: "Thou shalt not commit adultery." The accused, again, is guilty of violating this express command.

 

ACCUSED: Objection, Your Honor. Surely it cannot be proved that I have broken the solemn ties of matrimony and coveted my neighbor’s wife. I am no adulterer!

 

LAW: What does the Scripture say? "Whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart." {Mt 5:28} Again, a corrupt deed proceeds from a corrupt heart; the very thought, therefore, is of the same nature as the deed, equally reprehensible before the gaze of a Holy God.

 

DIVINE JUSTICE: Objection over-ruled. You may step down, "Mr. Law."

 

PROSECUTION: Your Honor, I call as my second witness one who knows the accused better than any mortal, "The Flesh." Mr. Flesh, how well acquainted are you with the accused?

 

FLESH: I have been his companion throughout his life. Like a putrid carcass strapped to his back, I have accompanied him on every journey. We have been together every hour of every day. When he sat down to eat, I peered over his shoulder. When he reclined to sleep, I was with him. Whatever he did, where ever he went, I was there, and I must confess, he was very kind to me. He sometimes pampered me and allowed me to gratify my appetites. He often "made provision for me," {Ro 13:14} even at times going out of his way to make me comfortable. I tell this court in all candor that he is a wonderful person. No one could ever be a better friend to me than he. Sometimes he catered to pride and self-conceit, entertaining the arrogance of a haughty spirit. Oh, he made me so happy! He generously indulged my desire for sloth and lethargy. Frequently on the Lord’s Day, he would allow me to enjoy the spirit of slumber and, in much gratitude, I would supply him with a thousand excuses to justify his absence at public worship. He allowed me to take regular vacations from the hard and unpleasant task of daily prayer and family worship. He knew how I detested Bible reading, so he allowed me to watch the television instead. When he was tempted to obey God, I would persuade him with arguments of unbelief and he, I’m happy to say, was amazingly eager to comply with my counsel. When he would rejoice over another’s success, I would remind him that he deserved it more than they and this would produce my favorite disposition of mind, jealousy and envy. (The prosecuting attorney laughs.)

 

PROSECUTOR: What you describe as virtues are, in reality, great vices. The accused is clearly guilty.

 

DIVINE JUSTICE: You may step down, Mr. Flesh.

 

PROSECUTOR: Your Honor, I call as my third witness, the "Conscience" of the accused. Mr. Conscience, please tell this court of your experience with the accused.

 

CONSCIENCE: I tell you now, even weeping, that I am battle-worn and weary. For a long time, I have been engaged in the fiercest of conflict with the previous witness, Mr. Flesh. Although I was victorious on occasion, yet I suffered many painful wounds at his hands. If the accused had but heeded my counsel, I would have never suffered defeat, but he frequently allied himself with Mr. Flesh against me. Even on those occasions when I condemned his soul and brought him under heavy burdens of guilt, he still rebelled against me. I would bring Scripture before his mind, but he would thrust them out and refuse to admit his failures or repent of his ways. When he attended public worship, I would take the opportunity to afflict and chasten him with the preacher’s words, but he would harden his heart, stiffen his neck, and brace himself in rejection against my reproof. How he has tortured and vexed me! I cannot begin to explain how he has grieved me. His reluctance to follow my counsel is only one of his crimes against me. He has also neglected my education by the word of God and the practice of the spiritual disciplines. Seldom has he permitted me any respite from the assaults of Mr. Flesh. How sorely I’ve been treated all of my days.

 

DIVINE JUSTICE: You may step down, Mr. Conscience. Have you any further witnesses?

 

PROSECUTOR: I have yet two more, Your Honor. May I suggest that the evidence presented thus far argues incontrovertibly against the accused, but I will now proceed to establish his guilt with two final proofs. For my fourth witness, therefore, I call "the World." Tell me, Mr. World, how well do you know the accused?

 

WORLD: Very well. As a matter of fact, he is "a friend of the world." {Jas 4:4} From his birth, he has "walked according to the course of this world," {Eph 2:2} governed by the "rudiments of this world." {Col 2:2} I have observed his daily conduct and can readily say that he possesses an insatiable hunger for reputation. He is a thorough worldling. Someone once said that he claimed to believe in God, but he has never said anything to me about it. I’ve never heard one word fall from his lips about the Lord. He hoards filthy lucre like a miser. Once when a store clerk gave him too much change, he concealed the error, justifying himself by saying, "She should have been more careful." He thinks that he has me fooled, but I have observed him for so long that I must conclude that he is no different than everyone else around him. When needy people approached him for assistance, he turned them empty away. I heard him say, "In this world, a person must look out for himself. After all, if I shared with others what I have accumulated by my own hard work, how could I afford to maintain my own high standard of living?" He has even spoken unkindly to those who desired his aid. He is a thoroughgoing materialist. Conventional wisdom and popular opinion are the criteria by which he makes his decisions. He desperately wants to be popular among men. Yes, this man is synthetic in the strictest sense of the word.

 

DIVINE JUSTICE: You may step down, Mr. World. You may call your final witness, Prosecution.

 

PROSECUTOR: The prosecution calls as its final witness, the defendant himself. You have heard the accusations against you. Have you an acceptable answer to these serious charges? Well, speak man.

 

ACCUSED: Well, I, I, I did my best to do right.

 

PROSECUTION: Your best? Ha! You’ve never done your best in any endeavor, whether in family, business, social, or religious employments. Your life has been wasted- squandered! You are the chief of sinners. Your sins of omission and sins of commission; your presumptuous sins against the light of knowledge and your secret sins have now been tallied and the unescapable dilemma of your soul is now plain. Your Honor, since the evidence is overwhelmingly conclusive of his guilt, and since he has offended even Thee, I demand, in the name of righteousness, justice, and equity that he receive at the hands of this court the maximum sentence according to the law; that is, that he be forever banished into conscious oblivion, suffering the torment of everlasting fire in the lowest hell.

 

The sinner’s case, as you can see, is quite dismal. Oh, if he just had a lawyer! "Oh, that one might plead for a man with God, as a man pleadeth with his neighbor." {Job 16:21} But who would take his case? In the face of such incontrovertible evidence, what attorney would be willing to represent him, much less able to procure his justification? Who could one find who has the necessary legal qualifications to take upon himself the sinner’s defense? Such a desperate plight is depicted by the Psalmist when he queries, "Oh Lord, if thou shouldest mark iniquities, who shall stand?" {Ps 130:3} and by Job when he asserts, "If God should contend with man, man cannot answer him one of a thousand." {Job 9:2} Would any reader dare to attempt to plead his own merit before such a court? Weighed in the balance of human failure and Divine holiness, man’s works are lighter than air. Surely, the rebel sinner has met his doom. But, wait a moment. Court has not yet been adjourned. I think I hear Job intimating that there is hope for sinners: "I know that it is so of a truth, but how should man be just with God?" {Job 9:1} The Psalmist also offers a ray of hope, saying, "But there is forgiveness with thee that thou mayest be feared." {Ps 130:4} Suddenly, the noise of a hundred voices of condemnation are silenced as One rises to his feet to plead with the judge on behalf of the accused. He is the Judge’s own Son, and the believing sinner’s "advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous." {1Jo 2:2} Hear him as he addresses the court:

 

JESUS: Righteous Father, I have voluntarily assumed the office of mediator for this man. Though he is vile and sinful, guilty of each of the foregoing charges, yet I confess to this highest court that I have already paid the penalty for his crimes. The curse of the law fell upon me in his stead. The wrath due to his iniquity has been laid upon me. In his place, I fulfilled, by a perfect and entire obedience, the precept of the law, from my first mortal breath to my final dying pang, and by that obedience, he has been made righteous; {Ro 5:19} therefore, in the name of justice and equity, I declare that to remember his sins against him and to punish him again for those sins which have already been punished in me would be an act of double jeopardy, and "far be it from God, the righteous Judge, to commit unrighteousness." {Job 34:24}

 

DIVINE JUSTICE: Very well, then, without further delay, I will now issue the verdict. This court finds the defendant not guilty of breaking the law. He is not guilty of hypocrisy, of ingratitude, or any other sin. No blot can be found on his record. In fact, his account shows a never failing supply of righteousness, righteousness that makes him fit to stand in my august and holy presence forever. There is not the slightest evidence before this court that he ever committed a crime; therefore, let the record show that he is justified. I declare that he is free from guilt and blame; I proclaim that he is all that the law requires him to be. Let the Wicked One cease from troubling; let this weary one be at rest, for "who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect; it is God that justifieth. Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us." {Ro 8:33-34} Cast the "accuser of the brethren down," for his case cannot be sustained. This court is adjourned- forever!

 

This, my friend, is the gospel of grace. Jesus stood in the place of His elect as their substitute. Their judgment fell upon Him, and His righteousness was imputed to them. By His unmerited favor, the entire elect family has been made, legally and positionally, righteous before God. When one believes this glorious and objective fact as it is reported in the gospel, peace and assurance and joy flood the soul, as Toplady describes:

 

"From whence this fear and unbelief? Hath not the Father put to grief His spotless Son for me? And will the righteous Judge of men Condemn me for that debt of sin Which Lord was charged on Thee? If Thou my discharge hast procured And freely in my room endured the whole of wrath divine; Payment God cannot twice demand, First at my bleeding Surety’s hand, And then again at mine. Return, my soul, unto thy rest; The merits of thy Great High Priest have bought thy liberty. Trust in His efficacious blood, Nor fear thy banishment from God, Since Jesus died for thee."

 

Think of the doctrine of Justification, then, in terms of three courtrooms: (1) Supreme Court, before the bar of Divine Justice; (2) The Court of Conscience, in the believer’s heart; (3) The Court of Public Opinion, in the eye of society. How does a person appear before God? That is the most important question! What is one’s status before that court? Because of the merit of Jesus Christ, all of God’s elect are "Justified," declared righteous, by the grace of God. It is an objective fact. Legally and positionally, all for whom Jesus died were "justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus." The gospel, furthermore, is a declaration of the fact of Christ’s finished redemptive work. It proclaims, clearly and triumphantly, the objective fact that God is satisfied with His people in His Son. It says, "Supreme Court has been adjourned forever for all the Father chose in the everlasting covenant." The "work" of reconciliation is done! When the trembling sinner hears and believes this "word of reconciliation," {2Co 5:18-20} claiming by faith an interest in the death of Christ, {Ro 6:11} he receives the subjective peace and assurance of sins forgiven in his conscience and, like the publican in Lu 18, returns to his house "justified," that is, with the peace and "blessedness" of heart that comes from knowing his sins are forgiven through Jesus Christ. {Ps 32:1; Ro 4:9; 5:1} This is justification by faith, the subjective side of the objective fact of the cross. Though this blessing is incalculably precious, the judgment of conscience is not the last word. No, God is Supreme Court. Conscience is a lower court. "If our heart condemn us, God is greater than our hearts and knoweth all things." {1Jo 3:20} The judgment of conscience, however, is crucial to a vigorous and confident discipleship: "If our heart condemn us not, then have we confidence toward God..."{1Jo 3:21} ff. Finally, the believer demonstrates his faith before the court of public opinion by his works. When others see his "good works," they declare him righteous. This is justification by works, the evidence of a gracious status before God and a genuine faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Justification, then, a forensic term, has to do with the verdict. It is a declaration of righteousness based on the fact that one has been made righteous by the imputation of the righteousness of Christ. For all the Father loved and gave to His Son, Jesus Christ has already borne the judgment.

 

"The Father lifted up His rod, O Christ, it fell on Thee! Thou stoodest in the sinner’s stead, now there’s no stroke for me. When purified, made white and tried, Thy glory then for me."

 

Do you know any better news?

 

(Adapted from Justification: Dialogues from Nathan and Theodore by Michael Gowens. The book is now out of print.)

Adoption

25

I grew up with the understanding, that is I understood it this way, that we became children of God by adoption, period! But, I have come to understand that there is far, far more to it than that. Just this week as I read through Exodus again and marveled at the detail of the tabernacle and the clothing of Aaron, I began to notice something that I had not paid much attention to in the past. God gave so much attention to all the rings, thatches, cords, poles, etc. Things that might be overlooked as you might stand in awe of the gold, silver, the furniture, altars, and even the mass of flesh that was offered. Yet, these small things are what held it all together. They gave the stability, strength, union to the whole. They are, if you will, what makes it all fit together.

Now, to my knowledge the word adoption is used in the KJV only 5 times. Ro 8:15; 9:4; Ga 4:5; Eph 1:5 As anyone can see the subject covers the volume of the scripture and is of God in Christ. It has to do with God’s choice of Israel as a people that He would speak of as His son Ex 4:21-23; Ho 11:1. Yet, it encompasses the bringing in of the Gentiles. Those who were not a people being made a people Ro 9:24; 1Pe 2:9-10. It involves God’s purpose and actions made sure in Christ before the world began, legal in time, vital in the individual, complete in glory. We, who are of the image and likeness of Adam Ge 5:3, of his nature and character, of the family of man, sinners and children of wrath, even as others Eph 2:3, have been by the eternal purpose of God, the legal actions and life of Christ Jesus, the sovereign work of the Holy Spirit been born of God in the inner man and adopted in the body as sons of God. I may be straining at one point brethren, but for me to keep things consistent in my thinking, it is the inner man, the new man, the new creation that is born of God. The body of flesh is not changed or made better in regeneration, but has been bought and paid for. Joh 6:63 It will be changed and conformed to the image of Christ in glory. We, the individual, share with all the regenerate a common salvation and experience in this life. We have the war of flesh and spirit. We groan within ourselves desiring to be free from this body of death and to be not found naked, but clothed upon with our house from heaven. We cry to our Father by reason of the Spirit within witnessing to our spirits that we are the sons of God and heirs to the promises and citizenship of heaven. Ro 8:15-17,23; 2Co 5:1-4; Eph 1:14. The inner man is born of the Spirit of God and bears that mark within. 1Jo 3:9. That soul has the seal and earnest of the inheritance to come and longs and reaches for it here, though bound by the flesh. That hope, (assured knowledge based on fact -my definition), is what delivers us in this life in following the movings of the Spirit and truth of the word. We are indeed saved by His life, not in the hereafter only, but now! That inner man is waiting for the adoption to be complete in body, soul, and spirit. That is the redemption of the body. The inner is born in spirit of the family of God, the flesh of the family of Adam has been paid for by the blood of Christ and legally purchased for a certain purpose, it will be changed, the mortal will put on immortality, the corrupt will put on incorruption, death will be swallowed up in victory! The firstfruits of that is planted within us, the harvest is promised. The firstborn, elder brother, of this sits in the seat of power, Jesus Christ. Verily God-Verily Man. He rules over the proceedings of the covenant being finished. It shall be done. Ro 8:28-30.

Adoption: A Most Beautiful Work

Written by Ben Cordes   
Monday, 16 November 2015 16:51

“Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,” Eph 1:5

Adoption is considered a legal term. One legally taking someone born of another and bringing them into their own family and giving that person the rights and privileges that come with being in that family. The child becomes an official part of the family, bearing the name of the parents. How beautiful this concept is! That a person typically in a bad situation can be taken in and loved by someone who is in a better circumstance. What an amazing display of unconditional love.

Adoption Implies Election:

Adoption is a biblical subject, indeed. In fact, God was the first adoptive parent. The Heavenly Father elected (1Pe 1:12) an innumerable host of people (Heb 11:12), out of the family of Adam, to be His heirs and joint-heirs with His only begotten Son, Jesus (Ro 8:17). As with any adoption, it was by the choosing of the adopting parent that the child was made an adoptee. The idea that a child chooses their parents is not a reality in any fashion. However, some teach that a sinner chooses God in order to be His child. In the post-modern, Western culture we live in today, many traditional social norms have been questioned. So it is not surprising that men try to disassemble the doctrines of the Bible and forge them into something that is convenient for them. Thanks be to God that His word endures forever. When folks study the Bible and rightly divide it they will find that adoption began with God CHOOSING his children.

Adoption Requires Payment:

I’ve never heard of a child paying to be adopted. Not to say that some probably wouldn’t give all they had to be in a loving family where they are cared for and nurtured. Even though that may be the mind of needy children, it is just not how it operates in our world. Neither is it the way in which we are purchased as children in adoption. The legal matter of adoption requires that a parent show an earnest desire for the one in which they are adopting. This may be through getting home affairs in order, showing that you are financially able to support a child, demonstrating that you are capable of providing for the needs of a child, etc. Jesus, in such devotion to the children He has chosen, has proven His love through payment on a cross. God the Father knew that the law of adoption must be honored and truly there was a cost the law demanded. Jesus endured the cross so that He would have brothers and sisters to enjoy the riches of glory with Him. Certainly this shows that we, the elect and adopted, are wanted and desired by the Father.

Adoption Results in Unity:

The best part of every adoption is when the child is finally picked up and embraced by the parent who has worked so hard throughout the legal process and endured with patience all the in between challenges and processes. So is the case for us when our Lord will return to pick us up, to join our soul and spirit with our newly glorified body, to unite us completely with Him in a glorious eternal day! We who are awaiting the return of Christ are earnestly anticipating the wonderful experience of embracing our Savior and Redeemer as children who have been out of place and away from home. We know that there is no greater experience to be had than to be with the One who truly loves us so much that He wouldn’t allow us to go anywhere else or be the children of a lesser being. He is never letting us go (Ro 8:38-39). So don’t get distracted. We have a Father who is sending His faithful Son to bring us home. We have all hope and reason to stay focused on loving Him and building up our trust and faith in Him while we are awaiting the return of the Great Prince of Peace. Let us help one another and love our fellow brothers and sisters while we wait for our uniting with Christ.

Christian Call to Adoption:

Seeing how the process of eternal adoption would have never occurred unless God initiated it, executed it and followed through with it, we ought to then be able to see how important it is for us to consider the subject in a mature way while here on earth. The reality of the fatherless, in a temporal sense, is that Christians should be leading the way to help and care for them. Jas 1:27 says that “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.” To visit means “to look after, or care for”. There are many children in the United States who have no parent to care for them, guide them and lead them in godliness. These children, unless someone intervenes, may grow to be no different than a product of a self-destructive society. Our religion is simple and so is our mission as Christians. We have a duty to step-up and care for these who have no one to care for them. I would encourage anybody who feels so burdened to consider adopting a child to prayerfully look into it. Regardless of a burden to adopt, our duty remains to help and support the fatherless in this world. If we will not, then who will? If God didn’t intervene on our behalf, no one would have.


“Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.” 1Jo 3:1

AFFLICTIONS, SWEET

AFFLICTIONS, SWEET

By Eld. T. L. Webb, Sr.

 

See WebbSr: SWEET AFFLICTIONS

ALL ABOARD

ALL ABOARD

   Before World War II, one of the Primitive Baptist Associations was holding its annual meeting in a small town in east-central Mississippi.

   In the area was a Negro Primitive Baptist church, pastured by a young black man who had little schooling but wasn’t lacking in wisdom. He was invited to preach to a gathering of the white ministers, and like most Primitive Baptists, he talked about election and predestination.

   When he found himself into scriptures he couldn’t easily explain, he told his listeners:

   “Brothers, you all been down to de depot when de train comes in.  Everybody milling ‘round laughin’ an talkin’ an de conductor holler, ‘All aboard.’  But everybody don’t get on dat train – jes dem dat has tickets.”

   (The above story was related to me many years ago by Elder Clyde O. Stegall of Crystal Springs, Mississippi).

(From “Of Primitive Faith And Order” By Gordon A. Cotton)

ALL INCLUDED

ALL INCLUDED
By Elder Clem E. Cook

It is written, The scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.

Also, it is written, For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all.

These writings are found in Ga 3:22 and Ro 11:32, both being in context of teachings concerning Israel.

Concluded is a translation from krino; properly to distinguish, i.e., decide [mentally of judicially]; by implication, to try, condemn, punish.

Proceeding these statements the question, Is the law then against the promises of God? and, Hath God cast away his people?

To the Galatians, the question, Received ye the spirit by the works of the law, or by hearing of faith? And to the Roman's, it was stated, For the gifts and calling of God are without repentance.

The nation of Israel was the elect nation of God. Ref. Isa 45:3-6. And it is my belief that the Bible teaches that this physical nation was a type of Spiritual Israel.

In Ro 3:1 the question is, what advantage then hath the Jew? Or what profit is there of circumcision? Saying, much in every way; chiefly, because unto them were committed the oracles of God. The Jew [the nation of Judaea] was the last representative of the nation of physical Israel The next question in Ro 3:3 states, For what if some did not believe? Shall their unbelief make the faith of God without effect? Thus answered, God forbid.

In Ro 3:9, it is asked, What then? Are we better than they? This is speaking of the unbelievers. The answer, No, in no wise: for we have before proved both Jews and Gentiles, that they are all under sin.

Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned. The word "all" is used to describe every person, or thing under consideration. All mankind have been, are, and will be sinners; and the believer, and the righteous are included. It is only by the selection [elect]. that God moves, will any be redeemed; and they by his grace All are saved by the blood of Jesus Christ. And none shall be lost.

Sincerely,

Your Servant in the Word,

Clem E. Cook Las Animas, CO.

All My Salvation

Hear audio for:  All My Salvation - 204th Old Mill Anniversary - speaker unknown

ALL THAT MATTERS

ALL THAT MATTERS

   One night a house caught fire and a young boy was forced to flee to the roof. The father stood on the ground below with outstretched arms, calling to his son, “Jump! I’ll catch you.” He knew the boy had to jump to save his life. All the boy could see, however, was flame, smoke, and blackness. As can be imagined, he was afraid to leave the roof. His father kept yelling: “Jump! I will catch you.” But the boy protested, “Daddy, I can’t see you.” The father replied, “But I can see you and that’s all that matters.”
--Source Unknown

ALL THINGS IN COMMON

ALL THINGS IN COMMON

In 1903 Elder Sylvester Hassell was asked what became of the first benevolent arrangement of the disciples by which they had all things in common (Ac 2:44-45; 4:32).  He gave the following answer:

"The Spirit of God, the Spirit of life and grace and faith and holiness and love was so abundantly poured out upon the church on, and just after, the Day of Pentecost that they all felt to be of one family indeed, and they loved God supremely, and they loved each other as they loved themselves, and they did unto other Christians as they would have them do to them, and even sold their property, so far as was necessary, to supply the necessities of their poor and needy brethren and sisters, just as Christ and His apostles were supported by a common fund, and as He had said, "Sell what ye have, and give alms" (Lu 12:33), and as He also said, "A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.  By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another" (Joh 13:34-35), and as James says, "Faith, if it hath not works, is dead" (Jas 2:15-17), and as John says, "Whoso hath this world's goods, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?  My little children, let us not love in word, neither in tongue, but in deed and in truth" (Joh 3:17-18).

The apostolic church, after the descent of the Holy Ghost upon its members in such great fullness and power, was indeed a heaven on earth.  It was a spiritual unit in faith and practice---a repast of heavenly glory.  But such lovely spirituality was not long to last.  We read in the sixth chapter of Acts that worldly feelings and dissensions came in, and they have been too prevalent ever since that time. 

In the increasing love of money---a root of all kinds of evil---the church has become entirely too much like the world; and this corrupt and corrupting principle seems to be the main-spring of nearly all the activity of nearly all the great denominations of the world, and the leading cause of the wide-spread paralysis affecting the Primitive Baptist churches.

ALONE WITH JESUS

ALONE WITH JESUS
By
Elder T.L. Webb, Jr.
Milan, Tennessee

   The very title of this article might be changed to say if we are “with Jesus” we are not alone. If we say there is no one present but Jesus and us, then this is indeed a happy state.

   Personally, I have always enjoyed being with people and enjoying their company, especially of the household of faith. However, there are times when I have longed for and experienced moments of quietness. Much of the time in my life I have been in crowds of people where there was continual talking, noise and boisterous laughter. From these situations, I love to slip away to myself, and in a few moments of solitude, find the peace of God in the stillness of those times.

   In the beautiful hymn, “Walk with God”, the writer says, “I love the quietness of the morning, the peaceful beauty of the day: I love to go there to my bower, and humbly bow my head and pray.” William Bradbury expressed it so beautifully when he said, “I love in solitude to share, the penitential tear, and all his promises to plead, where none but God can hear.”

   When the enemy death takes from us a close, precious loved one, we may be left alone to spend days and weeks by ourselves. In these times we do need others to communicate with. We need the association of kindred in Christ, and the church and its members can mean much to us. Loneliness can be very detrimental to our well-being. We need to talk with others who have experienced the same. Then again, we still need hours alone to hear and feel the “still, small voice of God.”

   There is One, who knew what it was to be alone. This One ALONE bore our sins in His own body. He trod the winepress of the wrath of God in our behalf and He did it all ALONE. He ALONE cried unto His Father in Gethsemane’s garden while His disciples slept. Many times it is recorded of Him being ALONE in prayer to His Father. This same precious Jesus has promised us He would never leave us alone! We sing this song at our church often, and I find so much experimental relief in the lines, “The world’s fierce winds are blowing, temptations sharp and keen, I find a peace in knowing, my Saviour stands between. He stands to shield me from danger, when earthly friends are gone. He promised never to leave me, NEVER TO LEAVE ME ALONE.”

   Before His death on the cross of Calvary, when in the moment of His supreme and perfect sacrifice for sin even His Father forsook Him for a moment. He told His disciples, “Behold the hour cometh, yea is now come, that ye shall be scattered, every man to his own, and shall leave me alone, and yet I am not alone, because the Father is with me.” Joh 16:32. It was necessary in that last hour; however, for the Almighty God Himself to forsake Him that He might suffer the penalty for our sins. What an hour that must have been!!

   To have Him with us means more than to have ten thousand beside us, and be absent from His presence. “IN HIS PRESENCE IS FULLNESS OF JOY.” Ps 16:11. We can be blessed with His presence while all alone. He spoke in the long ago concerning Abraham, “Look unto Abraham your father, and unto Sarah that bare you: for I called him ALONE, and blessed him, and increased him.” Isa 51:2. In the creative work of God in giving us Divine or spiritual life, this operation comes to us individually and personally. After being born of God, we have the presence of His Spirit to guide us and His presence to comfort us. So lovingly does Jesus tell us, “I will not leave you comfortless (orphans, alone): I will come to you.” Joh 14:18

   So many times I feel I am far from Him. I cannot always feel His blessed nearness. I am made to cry and weep because I need Him so greatly. Without Him I can do nothing worthwhile. Tears now fill my eyes as I type these words for suddenly I feel Him so close to me. Please, dear Jesus, do not leave me alone. I need Thee every hour!

   T.L. Webb, Jr.
(From “The Pathway of Truth”, April, 2003)

Am I A Pharisee?

Am I A Pharisee?
Written by Ben Winslett  

In Jesus' day, the Pharisees were an prominent group of religious Jews often regarded as being holy and spiritual. While their founding (150s BC) ideal was noble - separation from sinfulness and adherence to God's law - by the 1st Century AD they had become a harsh group of self-righteous elitists, often passing judgment on others they perceived to be less holy while ignoring glaring sin in their own personal lives.

Every Christian should self examine himself regularly to be certain he isn't infected with the spirit of the Pharisees. For Jesus Himself warned His disciples to "take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees..." (Mt 16:6). This mentality is compared to leaven in that once it is deposited into one's mind, it permeates as yeast does in dough and begins to affect the general demeanor and actions of a person.

Pharisees were cruel people. The general populous revered them as righteous, but both Jesus and John the Baptist condemned them as a generation of vipers, deserving of the fires of Hell. You. Do. Not. Want. To. Be. A. Pharisee. :-)
So what are the warning signs? Let's look at Mt 23, Jesus' longest rebuke of the Pharisees, for some of the symptoms.
 
1. Rules, Rules, and More Rules Mt 23:2-3)

The Pharisees loved rules. Jesus said they sat in Moses' seat, acknowledging their authority under the law. But these men were professionals at making rules to impose on others. What's wrong with that, you might ask? God makes rules. We obey His rules. To elevate a system of religious or social rules on people and wield religious power over them for obeying or disobeying your system is bondage.

Did you know Christianity isn't about rules? Sure - God has standards by which He expects us to live and chastens us when we disobey. However, the Disciple's life is to be one of faith, liberty, and mercy. The word that sums up our experience in Christ is the word LIBERTY. Outside of the sphere of things sinful, Christ lovingly gives us great liberty, freedom to choose.

Do you impose rules on others?

2. Rules For Others - Not For Self Mt 23:3-4)

Pharisees "say and do not." Jesus further elaborated that they bound heavy burdens but would not so much as "move them with one of their fingers."

If you find yourself making rules for all around you but opting out and excusing yourself from your imposed mandates, you have cause to be concerned. Such infringes upon the conscience of others. To be frank, doing such assumes the role of Jesus Himself and is a usurpation of authority. One who insists upon rules for others but lives outside of those said rules is a hypocrite.

Do you opt out of your own rules?

3. Religion For Show Mt 23:5)

The Pharisees loved to be "seen of men." Their works are intentionally public so others would see and perceive them as Holy, for in the Jewish culture (a true Theocracy), perceived holiness was a status symbol.

Jesus told us to do our alms in secret. To pray in secret. To serve in such a way that our right hand doesn't know what the left hand does (remember, a church is a body).
Do you do good works so others see?

4. A Lavish, Elitist Lifestyle Mt 23:6-7)

While the Pharisee loved to be seen of men, they also enjoyed the privilege which came with their spiritual rank. Jesus describes this as the "chief seats" in the synagogues and "uppermost rooms" at feasts, or Jewish festivals. By their status, they had the best room, the best seat, the prominent spot, special recognition. In short, they wanted preeminence. They wanted special recognition.

Do you desire special treatment or recognition?

5. Shut Up The Kingdom Mt 23:13)

Pharisees loved their religion. Yet, Christ came to fulfill the law and prophets, ending the Old Covenant and ushering in the New Covenant (worship contract). They rejected Christ, refused to humble themselves and be a part of the Church (Kingdom). But what's worse, they turned many people away from entering Christ's Kingdom who could have ordinarily entered in. This means they caused God's regenerated children to avoid walking with the disciples, likely through fear or false teaching.

While the modern Christian Pharisee might not threaten people away from the church, his or her attitude could drive people away.

Does your attitude drive people from church?

6. Step On Heads For A Religious Career Mt 23:14)

Their career was religion. These charlatans found no fault in squeezing every cent from the budgets of the poor and downcast, all to perpetuate their religious career. Notice from this verse (Mt 23:14) that they devour widows houses and make long prayers for a pretense. A pretense is a false claim. Ouch! They robbed the poor to perpetuate their fake ministries!

Please understand, scripture does teach the support of the ministry. But this is the support of the TRUE MINISTRY, Not uncalled deceivers.

Do you step on heads to move up the religious ladder?

7. Spreading Their Dominion Mt 23:15)

Jesus said of the Pharisees, that they compassed sea and land to make a single proselyte, or convert. Notice they didn't make disciples (students) of God and Christ. Nay, rather they made proselytes to their religion. When these men found one worthy and willing to receive it, they trained them in their hateful ways and in the end, the student was worse than the teacher.

Do you seek to convert men to you, or disciple them to Christ?

8. Earthly Wealth Over Spiritual Value Mt 23:16-17)

When it came down to "brass tacks," the Pharisees cared more about the money in the Temple treasury than the Temple itself. Jesus condemns this mentality, for obvious reasons. Money is money. God's Temple was Holy. The only reason that money was significant was because God's House sanctified it (see the verse).

Do you care more about money than Spiritual things?

9. Boast Great Accomplishments, Neglect Simple But More Weighty Daily Issues Mt 23:23-24)

Notice this one. The Pharisees had many outward accomplishments in the religious realm. They tithed of all they had, meaning they gave 10% of their money and goods in religious service. I even get the impression that they believed everyone owed them a debt of gratitude for their pomp. However, Jesus said they completely ignored more important issues - more weighty issues - like mercy, judgment, and faith.

Mercy is simple to explain. It is intentionally forgiving and not holding things against others, even if they deserve your wrath. It is letting go of offences. Judgment, here, doesn't refer to judging others, but proper discernment. Good judgment, if you will. Faith is obviously the trust we should have in God throughout our day to day lives. These concepts didn't compute in the Pharisee.

Do you pride yourself in religious works but neglect the "internals" of service to God?

10. Make Mountains Out Of Molehills Mt 23:24)

Pharisees major on the minors. Jesus said they strained at gnats (a small bug) and swallowed camels (a large animal). Their reasoning is full of inconsistencies to start with, a product of their legalistic framework for daily life. Thus, they blow insignificant issues out of proportion and ignore enormous, glaring problems in their life or theology. You could say they "fly off the handle" at the smallest of things. They are unable to "let things go."

Do you make mountains out of molehills?

11. Outside Clean - Inside Dirty Mt 23:25)

Jesus' comparison of the Pharisees to a platter is pointed. He described them as China, polished clean and bright on the outside but full of rot on the inside. Imagine if you went to your favorite restaurant, ordered a cup of coffee, was given a bright white cup only to begin drinking only to find someone else's rotting food stuck to the bottom of the cup. This was the Pharisee. The condition is one where outside performance indicates holiness but the inside condition is evil and wicked. They are further compared to a decorated tomb, a whited sepulcher, nice on the outside but full of death within.
Do you project holiness while harboring hatred and evil feelings towards others?

12. Persecution of Truth Tellers Mt 23:29-32)

Finally, the last characteristic of the Pharisee Jesus gives is that they persecute the men who dare call them out for their despicable ways. In the same way that their fathers killed the prophets, they persecuted Christ and the Apostles. When God called men spoke out against the wicked actions of these Pharisees, they became enraged and did all they could to destroy those who spoke against them.

Consider the words of Solomon in Proverbs -

Reprove not a scorner, lest he hate thee: rebuke a wise man, and he will love thee. - Pr 9:8

Though correction stings us all, faithful are the wounds of a friend and a wise man will digest it and improve. A scorner, however, will hate you for it. The Pharisees sat in "the seat of the scornful" (Ps 1).

Do you seek to destroy those who call you out?

Conclusion

While the Pharisees were a group of elite, religious people with official power, any of us could be stricken with the "leaven" of the Pharisees. Let us be weary and continually self examine our most inward parts (Ps 51:6) and purge out any tendencies such as this, calling on God, seeking repentance through Christ.

Amazing Grace

"Amazing grace...that saved a wretch like me..."

The word "wretched" appears only twice in Scripture: once, from a man who was sensible of his sinful condition (Ro 7:24), and then, to a church that was oblivious of its wretched state (Re 3:17). We may learn from this fact that it is better to be a sensible sinner, than to forget just how much we need the grace of God in Christ.

Elder Michael Gowens

America's Favorite Game

An 8th Grader's Wisdom

An 8th Grader's Wisdom

2Th 2:10 And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved.

2Th 2:11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:

2Th 2:12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

If the strong delusion that is sent among them is a belief that Christ died for everyone without exception, and that unless the mission field is populated and the gospel is preached to each and every person…does it follow that all those who go on such missions are doing the work of Satan instead of God - by helping spread that delusion?

My son uses such logic when talking to his school age peers. They are all Armenian in flavor, of course, and tell him that except he accepts, believes, repents, recants, whatever each particular branch has determined as the proper recitation of events or scriptures in order to be saved – except he accomplish all these things successfully, he will die and go to hell.

He asks them if it is a sin to judge a person. When they say yes, he informs them they have judged him hell-bound and now have put both he and them there. In their efforts to populate heaven, they are having the opposite effect.

Bro. Royce Ellis

AN ABOMINATION

AN ABOMINATION
By Elder Jim Turner, Jr.
Little Rock, Arkansas

  “Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with womankind: it is abomination.”  Le 18:22. It is my humble opinion that any sin that is forbidden in the Old Testament is just as sinful today as it was when the inspired writer recorded it.  Several years ago, a Jewish friend of mine, now deceased, asked me if I could show him in the Hebrew Bible, where homosexuality is forbidden.  I told him, yes, I thought I could.  I had never seen a Hebrew Bible, but I knew that they accepted the Old and not the New Testament, so I did a little research.  The next time we met he had his Bible with him, and I turned right to the above quoted scripture, and showed it to him. He never brought up the subject again.

   The Bible is clear on this subject.  All we have to do is read in Ge 19, how God dealt with Sodom and Gomorrah over this sin. Brother Paul makes it very clear in the first chapter of his letter to the church at Rome, that they which do such things are worthy of death.  Many scoff at the idea that the AIDS and HIV epidemic is the judgment of God on this ungodly behavior. As a Hospice chaplain, I quite frequently see the results of this lifestyle, and believe me, it is not a pretty sight. It all goes back to one simple fact.  If man would obey God’s laws, he would avoid many things that he otherwise suffers. In De 7:15 we read: “And the Lord will take away all sickness, and will put none of the evil diseases of Egypt, which thou knowest, upon thee; but will lay them upon all them that hate thee.”  I don’t think that the writer is saying here, that God’s obedient children will never get sick, but is simply teaching that by following God’s way, one man for one woman so long as both shall live, they will avoid what we term today as sexually transmitted diseases.

   In the first chapter of Paul’s letter in Romans, beginning with the 18th through the 32nd verses(Ro 1:18-32), he makes it very clear as to the scriptural position on the subject.  He winds up this chapter by saying that they which do such things are worthy of death. That certainly does not give us the right to take the law into our own hands concerning this sin.  God forbid that we should set forth such an idea. God deals with sin in His way and in His own good time.  We are taught in the scriptures to apply church discipline when necessary, but this must be done as the Bible instructs.  Someone asked me a few years ago, if a homosexual person could be saved. My reply to that is that no case is beyond the reach of God’s saving grace. This is a practiced lifestyle, and one that can be repented of if God grants them repentance.  Of course, we know that one cannot, nor does he have the desire to repent until visited by the Holy Spirit.  God’s people suffer for their sins here in time.  Those who hate God, and will never love Him, have their blessings here in time.  See Job 21 and Ps 73.  That is just one more example of the goodness of God.  Even those who hate Him, He allows to have material wealth here in time.

   Much more could be said on this subject, but we will not take up the space at this time.  I will close this writing, by pointing out that if we would all strive to live within the circle of God’s will, how much happier our lives would be each day.  He has promised many blessings here in time to all (His people) who obey Him.  I remember reading in a local newspaper, “Letters to the Editor” several years ago where a homosexual had written saying that he was sick and tired of Bible-thumping screwballs using Ro 1 to prove that he is an abomination.  What can we say?  All we have to do is read it from the Holy Bible.

   I will make one more observation, before concluding this writing.  I know we can’t tell anyone how to vote.  Thank God we still have that freedom!!  I would, however, plead with every Old Baptist, to please be informed about each candidate you have supported. I fear that many people this day and time, vote and have voted with their pocketbook and not their conscience. I would not knowingly vote for anyone who condones same sex marriages or the wholesale killing of unborn babies. One of the seven things listed in Proverbs, that God hates, is hands that shed innocent blood. What could be more innocent than a little unborn baby?  When I look in the mirror and shave each morning, I want to respect the fellow I am looking at.

   Elder Jim Turner, Jr.

AN ABSURDITY

AN ABSURDITY

Those who are in the love and service of sin could not rest from the burden of their sins, because they are not burdened with them. The Saviour did not address them when He said, "Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." They are not laboring under a heavy load of guilt, for they prefer a life of sin to a life of holiness.

Much money is being raised and great efforts are being put forth to save this class by human means, but it all ends in a complete failure. How very absurd it is to invite those who prefer a wicked life to a supposed rest to be found in becoming religious. If such are persuaded or excited to assume religious pretensions it is only heaping a burden upon them. Those who do not love holiness could have no greater burden than to attempt to practice it.

To teach that the salvation of such is conditional on their part is to teach that those who are not burdened with the hatred and distress of sin must engage in what is distasteful to them in order to be released from what does not burden them.   

—Elder John R. Daily  Zion’s Advocate, 1904.

An Angel of Mercy

AN ANGEL OF MERCY

 At the close of the first bloody day of the battle of Fredericksburg, hundreds of the Union wounded men were left lying on the ground and on the road ascending Mary's Heights. All night and most of the next day the open space was swept by artillery from both the opposing lines, and no one ventured to the relief of the sufferers. All that time their agonized cries went up for "Water! Water!" But there was no one to help them, and the roar of the guns mocked their distress.

 At length, however, one brave fellow behind the stone ramparts where the Southern forces lay, gave way to his sympathy, and rose superior to his love for life. He was a sergeant in a South Carolina regiment, and his name was Richard Kirkland. In the afternoon he hurried to General Kershaw's headquarters, and, finding the commanding officer, said to him excitedly: "General, I can't stand this any longer. Those poor souls out there have been praying and crying all night and all day, and it is more than I can bear. I ask your permission to go and give them water."

 "But, do you know," said the general, admiring the soldier's noble spirit, "that as soon as you show yourself to the enemy you will be shot?"

 "Yes, sir; I know it; but to carry a little comfort to those poor dying men, I'm willing to run the risk."

 The general hesitated for a moment, but finally said, with emotion: "Kirkland, it's sending you to your death, but I cannot oppose such a motive. For the sake of it I hope God will protect you. Go!"

 Furnished with a supply of water, the brave sergeant immediately stepped over the wall, and applied himself to his work of Christ-like mercy. Wondering eyes looked on as he knelt by the nearest sufferer, and, tenderly raising his head, held the cooling cup to his parched lips. Before his first service of love was finished, every one in the union lines understood the meaning of the noble soldier in gray, and not a man fired a shot. He stayed there on that terrible field an hour and a half, giving drink to the thirsty and dying, straightening their cramped and mangled limbs, pillowing their heads on their knapsacks, and spreading their army coats and blankets over them as a mother would cover her suffering child; and all the while he was so engaged, until his gentle ministry was finished, the fusillade of death was hushed.

 So it is on life's battle-field. The cannonade of sin and wickedness is hushed and powerless before the fearless Christian soldier who dares to do right, even though his life hangs in the balance.

 ---Elder Sylvester Hassell
 The Gospel Messenger, Jan. 1903

An Appeal for Peace

An Appeal For Peace

From "The Writings of Elder R. A. Biggs"

    AN APPEAL FOR UNITY

    Trusting it may tend to peace and be a help to unify our beloved brethren on some points of doctrine and good order, in which there seems to have been some difference of opinion among our people, the Primitive Baptists, I feel it a duty to give what our people have and do subscribe to on some vital points.

    First: On predestination, I have understood our people to believe that God's predestination embraces everything needful in the salvation of his people from sin, and that God is the author of his predestination, together with its results, full establishing his foreknowledge of all conditions and events harmonizing in His election of His people to salvation in Christ Jesus, in the effectual calling, justification and the final glorification of his people in heaven.

    Second: I have always understood our people to believe that Christ made a special atonement on the cross for all the sins of all His elect people.

    Third: I have understood them to believe that His elect people are sons and daughters of Adam's fallen family.

    Fourth: That they (his people) are in time regenerated, or born again in soul and spirit and that their bodies will be in their resurrection.

    Fifth: That man in regeneration is passive and receives eternal life from God as a free gift.

    Sixth: That after regeneration God's people are complex, possessing two natures, human and divine; two lives, natural and spiritual; two men, the outward man and the inward man, hence the continual warfare.

    Seventh: That the child of God is active in obedience; that he obeys from the heart that form of doctrine delivered unto him, that the grace of life in the soul is the efficient cause, and all acceptable obedience thereafter is the effect or fruit of the good tree or renewed heart.

    Eighth: That the man that is quickened or regenerated in soul and spirit loves God, mourns over and hates his sins, hungers and thirsts after righteousness; but that man in body sins, makes mistakes, goes astray; man in body dies, man in spirit goes to heaven at the death of the body; man in the body goes to the grave, but in the resurrection the body will be quickened, made spiritual, immortal, and spirit and body reuniting, then man in his entirety will be changed and glorified in heaven.

    Ninth: That divine life in the soul precedes hunger, thirst, love, faith, joy, peace, and all holy aspirations; life is the efficient cause and that which life produces being the effect.

    Tenth: That the child of God as a complex being can do wrong and live after the flesh and thus lose his spiritual enjoyments here in this present world.

    Eleventh: That the child of God by the grace of God in the soul, can mortify the deeds of the flesh and keep his body in subjection and glorify God in his body and spirit which are His.

    Twelfth: That sin is a transgression of God's Holy Law by his creatures.

    The above I have understood our people to heartily believe, and I heartily subscribe to it as the truth, recommend the same to our people as a basis of agreement among them, that unity of sentiment may abound everywhere among us.
     

    ORDER

    Under this head, I have understood our people to regard it disorder for any faction to assemble and declare themselves the church proper without first having proved that the church departed from the faith and order that Christ established for the government of the church in her act of excluding them. And any and all persons are acting disorderly who are or may be engaged in gathering or attempting to gather any such excluded members and advising them to declare themselves the church in order. Our people generally regard it disorder for any minister who may have a grievance against another brother preacher to take it to his church and have his home church to raise a complaint against his brother before he takes the matter up with his brother and makes an effort to adjust their differences. And they regard it disorder on the part of any church who will hear such a complaint before her member has made any effort to adjust his matter of grievance with his brother. They also regard it disorderly for a minister or any other member of the church to take up the report against a brother and circulate it to the injury of the brother and the cause before the church has time to investigate the report and see whether it is true or false (also to deny the truthfulness of a report after investigation by any church only by proper gospel steps.)

    This seems to be a growing evil and should be condemned by all the churches. And any preacher or any other member of the church who is guilty of such conduct should be rebuked by their churches, and if they persist in such conduct should be disciplined by their churches.

    I submit the above and recommend it to our brotherhood at large, hoping thereby to kindly and tenderly in love place beyond our borders all offenses false sentiments and practices, not embraced in God's Holy Word.

    

    DISCIPLINE

    My observation through life has been that, generally speaking, our churches have had more trouble and difficult cases from a lack of discipline than from any other one thing. Strict discipline is the life of any kind of organization, without it no organization of any kind will last long. I have known of long, wearisome cases in the church because the order laid down in the Bible was not observed. Such a lack will always lead to unnecessary trouble. When cases of trespasses occur, and the offended party goes off and tells the trouble to others, they themselves thereby become transgressors, because the Bible rule is plain and simple, and says, "If thy brother trespass against thee, go to him alone and tell him his fault." This is the only right course to pursue in cases of trespassing, "go to him alone," not to others with it. I think when anyone is aggrieved at another, if they fail to go to the offender, and go out to others and tell of their trouble they should be mildly rebuked and advised to go to the party whom they claim has hurt them, and try to get a reconciliation. If they succeed, no one else need to be burdened with it. But in the event they should fail to get satisfaction, then take one or two more, and then if they succeed in getting the matter settled, let it stop right there; never bother others with it. But should they fail to get the matter adjusted, then let it be reported to the church, and not before. Moderators sometimes are responsible for trouble in the church, by allowing a matter to come into the church before it has been gospelly treated. I think a moderator, when such cases are reported to the church, should inquire into the matter, and if he finds it has not been gospelly treated, refuse to allow it to come before the conference until it is gospelly treated. If found to have been gospelly treated, then let the church take hold of the matter, and after duly laboring to save and reconcile, should she fail, why then exclude. In public offences such as "theft, fornication, adultery," etc., these are not private trespasses and do not require private dealing. All that is necessary in such cases is for the church to have the evidence that the parties accused are guilty then cut them off or exclude them from the church for the apostle says: "Such have no inheritance in the church of God." The honor of God requires this, His holy cause requires it, the well being of the church and her peace and fellowship require this.

    Now I wish to say that sometimes our brethren and sisters get up unnecessary trouble. We ought to be forbearing people. I think sometimes we become too sensitive and take offence when we should have borne it. I never have had any trouble with any member of a church to which I belonged. I have had some hard things said about me, but I bore it, never even told my wife of it, and I feel today that it was best. I saved the church perhaps a great deal of trouble, besides the parties were saved by my forbearance.

    I feel sure that a brother or sister has a perfect right to bear the faults of others, and to do this is to keep it in your own bosom, to tell it is not to bear it. But if you feel you cannot bear it, then go as the Bible requires, and tell him or her their faults, go in the spirit of love, considering that you, too are imperfect. When this rule is strictly followed in the love of God, and His cause, there is seldom a case of trespassing but what is agreeably adjusted.

    There is according to my observation too much exacting on the part of some. We should all remember we are all imperfect creatures here, and should make due allowances for the words and actions of others toward us. Always remember the golden rule, "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you," and a great deal of unnecessary trouble would be avoided. Let all cultivate the spirit of love and forbearance one toward another and try to curb hatred and malice and envy, and times will be better with us. Don't you think so?
     

    PRIVATE TRESPASSES, AND PUBLIC OFFENCES

    I will express some of my thoughts concerning "private trespasses," and "public offences." First, I will say that private trespass is only against the one offended, while a public offence is against the whole body (or church.) In the private trespasses I will say it is the duty of the one that is offended to go to the trespasser and try to get satisfaction unless he aims to "bear" it, and first I will say, any one has a right to "bear" with a brother if he feels it is right to do so, then in that case the matter should never be mentioned to anyone. I have known cases where one brother felt offended at another and would go around among the brethren and tell every one of it but would say I want peace; I do not want to make any trouble about the matter so I will bear it. Now I think such a course is just the thing to make trouble. If a brother wants to bear with his brother that is all right but he is not doing so when he is telling everybody he meets about it, but if he wishes to bear it then never say anything about it to anyone, that is bearing it. But if he feels that he cannot bear it, he should go to the trespasser, and tell him his fault alone, if satisfaction is made then the matter is ended, never to be brought up again. But if not then take one or two more, and try again to get satisfaction and if it is obtained, there it ends, no one else is troubled with it. But if you still fail to get satisfaction then tell it to the church, now it becomes public and the church should take hold of the matter and try to get the trespasser to make satisfaction; should she fail, then withdraw fellowship from him. Thus I have briefly stated what I consider to be a private trespass, and the course to be pursued in such cases, and I will say in regard to public offences, that a public offence is a wrong committed publicly, and such are against the whole church, no more against one member than another, but against the whole body, and, the cause is exposed, and I consider it the duty of the church as soon as she comes in possession of the facts to take it up and through some of her members have the offender appear before her and make satisfaction to the church then the church should forgive, otherwise withdraw from him; but such offences as "fornication," and such like should be withdrawn from as soon as the church comes in possession of the facts, until the offender by an orderly walk gives evidence that he has turned away from such a course; then he may be restored to fellowship in the church. These are some of my thoughts in regard to "private trespasses" and "public offences" and I feel sure that if this rule was followed up strictly among all our people, a great many troubles would be obviated.
     

 MY LAST APPEAL FOR PEACE

    In as much as there is, and has been some differences of opinions among our people, the Primitive Baptists in Texas on some points of doctrine and order, producing confusion, and in some places divisions; and desiring to see all this stopped among us, and if possible see our people and churches united in peace and love, I humbly submit the following as a basis upon which all may come to an agreement, hoping kindly and tenderly in love to place beyond our orders any occasion for further strife and discord among us that is contrary to God's word and express in wholesome words our sentiments of the truth.

    1. On predestination: We believe God's predestination embraces everything needful in the salvation of his people from sin, and that God is the author of his predestination, together with its results, full establishing his foreknowledge of all conditions and events harmonizing in His election of His people to salvation in Christ Jesus, in the effectual calling, justification and the final glorification of his people in heaven.

    2. We believe Christ Jesus made a special atonement on the cross for all the sins of all His elect people.

    3. We believe His people are sons and daughters of Adam's fallen family.

    4. We believe they, his people, are in time regenerated, or born again in soul and spirit and that their bodies will be in the resurrection.

    5. We believe God's people in regeneration is passive and receive eternal life as a free gift.

    6. We believe that after regeneration God's people are complex, possessing two lives, natural and spiritual, two natures, human and divine, two men, the outward and inward man, hence the warfare.

    7. We believe this complex person is the child of God.

    8. We believe the child of God is active in obedience, that he obeys from the heart that form of doctrine delivered unto him, that the grace of life in the soul is the efficient cause, and that all life in the soul is the efficient cause, and that all acceptable obedience thereafter is the effect or fruit of the renewed soul.

    9. We believe the person thus regenerated or born again in soul and spirit loves God, mourns over and hates his sins, hungers and thirsts after righteousness that this person in body or flesh sins, makes mistakes, goes astray; this person in body dies, this person in spirit goes to heaven at the death of the body, that this person in body goes to the grave; that in the resurrection this person in body will be quickened made spiritual and immortal, the spirit and body then reunited, then this person in his entirety will be changed and glorified in heaven.

    10. We believe that divine life in the soul precedes hunger, thirst, love, joy, faith, peace and holy aspirations, life is the efficient cause, and that which life produces being the effect.

    11. We believe that the child of God as a complex being can do wrong and live after the flesh, and thus lose his spiritual enjoyments here in this present world.

    12. We believe the child of God by grace of God in the soul, can mortify the deeds in the flesh and keep his body in subjection, and glorify God in his body and spirit which are his.

    13. We believe sin to be a transgression of God's holy law by his creature, man.

An excerpt from "A Great Wonder In Heaven"

An excerpt from "A Great Wonder In Heaven"

A sermon preached by Elder Orvin J. Huffman, Asheville, North Carolina, at Mountain Home Church, Asheville, North Carolina.

I heard an old Comanche Indian preach one time. Let me tell you about that just a bit. An old Comanche Indian. Did you know that the Comanche was one of the most blood-thirsty Indians that there ever was? They are not like these red Indians like the Cherokee or some of these others, they are almost white like we are. A little darker skin, perhaps, but they are big people. This Indian stood, I guess, a good six and a half feet tall. Oh, to listen to that man stand and preach the everlasting gospel of God and to realize that here was a man of a race that once was feared and yet the very people, the descendents of the people that feared his ancestors, loved him because of the gospel that he preached. He told about one time that he was preaching the gospel at a meeting. At the close of the meeting, you know just like we Old Baptists do a lot of times, they come around shaking hands and put their arms around one another out of sheer joy and love for one another. He said at the close of that meeting there was an old Cherokee Indian that rose up back there and came forward and put his arms around him, Nobody, he says, in that congregation knew what happened, at that time but him and that old Cherokee Indian. That was the first time in over four hundred years there had been any love shown between those two tribes. What brought this about? Just the preaching of the gospel?. No! It was the grace of God, my children, that worked upon the heart of this old Cherokee Indian and also upon the tongue of this Comanche and his heart, too, enabled him to preach in such a way that the other one could receive it, and rejoice in it.

AN INFIDEL PHYSICIAN CONVERTED

AN INFIDEL PHYSICIAN CONVERTED

 "I tried to be an atheist," said a young physician of my acquaintance to me one day, "but I was compelled to believe in a Supreme Being; but I rejected the God of the Bible. For a year or more I was called to stay by the side of the sick bed of my mother, who died of consumption. The ministerial duties of my father led him away from home much of the time. Like the families of many of God's ministers, we were frequently much reduced in temporal things, often having nothing in the house to eat but corn meal and bacon. But my mother had learned where to go in time of need; and as I watched beside her bed I would often hear her voice in prayer, asking her Father for something suitable for her to eat; and never once did she fail to get it. A tray of just such things as a sick person needed would be sent her. So frequent was this that I was compelled to believe in a God who heard prayer.

 Three weeks before she died she suffered greatly. She asked the Lord for one hour's freedom from pain before she died. The hour came. She told the friends she had but an hour more to live, bade us all goodbye, and just one hour from the time she told us, she died.

 My infidelity could not stand such evidence as this, and I could only fall at the feet of Him who loved us well enough to take our place upon the cross and suffer in our stead."

 "This is the story as I heard it from the physician himself," says Mr. H. L. Hastings, in his Tales of Trust. "How mighty is the influence of a true believer who lives and walks by faith; and how wonderful the Providence that can use the sickness and poverty of a wornout saint to convict a skeptic of the error of his ways, and lead a wandering sinner home to God!"

 ---Elder Sylvester Hassell
 The Gospel Messenger, 1913

AN INFIDEL SILENCED

AN INFIDEL SILENCED

 A hundred years ago there lived a man who was reckoned a great philosopher. His name was David Hume, and he professed himself to be an infidel as well as a philosopher. He did not believe in the Bible.

 A hundred years ago there also lived an old woman whose name is unknown, and she, while she lived, was reckoned very unlearned. She knew how to read, but her reading was most likely confined to almost one book. She had labored hard all her life, but her life's labor had not lifted her out of her poverty. She was what she always had been, a poor peasant woman---the inmate of a poor cottage---and she died as she had lived, a Christian. She believed in the Bible.

 One day as this poor woman was seated by her cottage door with her book before her, her hands engaged in knitting, a gentleman came by with whom she was slightly acquainted, for he lived near and she had heard what manner of man he was. Seeing how she was engaged, Mr. Hume (for this was the gentleman) stopped and spoke; after which followed a conversation something like this:

 "You are reading the Bible?" said he.

 "Yes, sir."

 "And you believe what you read?"

 "Yes, sir, I do believe what I read," and the old woman looked sadly and seriously into the gentleman's face. He saw that she looked sad, and said to her rather banteringly, "I could never understand how it is that you Christians, who believe the Bible, always seem so miserable. You tell us that the book is full of comfort, but you don't show it."

 "Ah, sir," replied she, "that is easily explained. You never see us only when we can see you; and the very sight of you, and such as you, who are living in unbelief and under the curse of sin, is enough to make any Christian look sad."

 The philosopher walked on.
 ---From Zion's Advocate, 1903

An Interesting Observation

An Interesting Observation
Written by Ben Winslett  

What do you think most Christians really crave to hear preached? Practical insight? Something motivational? Were people polled, I imagine many would answer accordingly. However, a recent server log gave me reason to pause and reflect on something I have believed for years. People, especially people who are outsiders to the message of grace, need to hear the truth about their salvation!
 
Last week, I broke from my traditional radio format of producing a message in studio specifically for the listening audience and used a pulpit sermon from our current series through the book of Ephesians. In this case, it was a portion of our first message, taken from Eph 1, entitled "The Eternal Purposes of God." You can't get much more PB than a sermon from Eph 1. In this chapter, Paul addresses election, predestination, redemption, and the resurrection. Good ole Bible doctrine! Well, in a week's time, this particular sermon was downloaded from iTunes TWICE as many times as any other message, making it my most listened to program.

You would think, with practical insight (a very worthy area) being so trendy in Christian radio and web these days, that a simple gospel message on Sovereign Grace would be overlooked and discarded. But that wasn't the case. In the vast landscape of Christian listeners, this message was their top choice from those available. Not the one on marriage. Not the one on serving God. Not the one on living by faith. Folks chose to hear of the Eternal Purposes of God.
 
What "Grows" Churches

What subject matter do you think leads to more growth in an Old Baptist Church? You might be inclined to say "practical things." That sounds right on the surface, doesn't it? I mean, how many times have you heard the statement "we just preach too much grace"? But do you realize much of evangelical Christendom agree on the practical matters? I am convinced that what leads to lasting, real growth in a PB Church is presenting the true gospel that God chose them, Christ redeemed them, the Spirit regenerated them, and eventually God will glorify them! It will feed the hungry, sin sick soul and it will also purge out the proud. An atheist could even agree with some of the Bible's teachings on money or marriage, but the gospel cuts to the quick.
 
It's a simple concept, but for one to be converted to the truth, they must hear the truth proclaimed! We exist as a spiritual body to proclaim Christ's finished work and worship Him in spirit and in truth. Our main focus to newcomers should be to teach them the truth of their salvation. In my experience, if you visit churches which have experienced a great ingathering, the main spiritual topic of conversation among the new members is God's grace.
 
Two Levels of Teaching

Notice Jesus' instruction to His apostles in Mt 28.
"Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you..."
Go and teach. The word teach means "to make disciples." If you read the Acts of the Apostles, their first message to new people was always the message of the gospel of Christ. What comes after this INITIAL teaching? Baptism. Then what? You teach them to observe ALL things God commands us. This gives us the proper order of things.
 
1) We preach the unadulterated gospel to newcomers.
2) We baptize those who confess Christ.
3) We then teach them God's will for their life, subjects like marriage, childraising, finances, etc.
 
Folks can go to a marriage seminar any time. They can only find the gospel message in the Church. What leads to lasting, true growth among the flocks of God is the message of God's grace. The gospel is the foundation, practical godliness is the structure we build after the foundation of Christ has been laid.
 
I share this as food for thought. Don't think for a minute that the message of Grace isn't something God's children want to hear in our day. While followers of Christ need to learn the practical teachings of God's word, the "bait for our hook" is the Gospel of Christ.

An Isolated People

On the eastern shore of India in the Bay of Bengal, beyond Bangladesh and Myanmar is a small archipelago known as the Andaman Islands.  Within that chain is a tiny dot of land called North Sentinel Island.

Modern satellite photos reveal nothing but trees – they’ve never been harvested – so it’s impossible to know what kind of structures are there.

The government of India, who has dominion over the area, estimates between 50 and 400 people live on North Sentinel Island.

For lack of a better name, Indians call them Sentinelese.  They are primitive – not like we are Primitive, but in the true sense of the word, pre-Neolithic. They are the most isolated people on the face of the earth.  They have mostly gone un-contacted by outsiders for centuries if not thousands of years. They do not take kindly to visitors.

A 1967 attempt by Indian authorities to engage them failed.

In the 1970s, a film crew and anthropologist tied to initiate contact with gifts, toys, fruit, pigs, pots and pans.  The film’s director was shot in the thigh with an arrow, halting any plans for a documentary. India eventually decided it best not to expose this group to outside disease or invaders.  A previous island group was introduced to modern illness by man’s intrusion. It almost wiped them out, destroying their culture in the process.

As recent as 2006, illegal fishermen near the island were killed by archers.  A helicopter sent to retrieve the bodies of the fishermen was met with such a barrage of arrows, the recovery effort was called off.  The power of the helicopters blades uncovered shallow graves, telling us they are not cannibals and they bury their dead.

Almost all other knowledge about them is based on educated guessing. It’s assumed they live in huts and are hunter-gatherers; they have been observed using wooden javelins, bows and arrows, and harpoons. They speak a language unique to them which we have no way of translating. The Sentinelese appear to use pig skulls as ornaments of some sort, and have been observed to use some form of red dye in clothing and decoration.

Why do I tell you all this?  Because I’m convinced you’re going to meet some of these people in eternity.  My book tells me the Lord chose – in an everlasting covenant, before the foundation of the world, a bride, out of every kindred, tongue, people and nation.  That covers every possible group - not in a universal sense, but it tells us a representative from every group will be in heaven’s glory world.

Re 5:9 And they sung a new song, saying, Thou art worthy to take the book, and to open the seals thereof: for thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation

  

Gen 24:60 And they blessed Rebekah, and said unto her, Thou art our sister, be thou the mother of thousands of millions, and let thy seed possess the gate of those which hate them.

They have never heard the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

It shouldn’t surprise you to learn that entire civilizations have lived and died never having heard the name of Jesus.  Yet representatives from those civilizations are encompassed in those four groups in Revelation (kindred, tongue, people, and nation).  Though covered by the everlasting covenant, some have never heard the name of the one who died for them and secured them a home in eternity.

It’s a privilege you’ve been given to hear that name, to rehearse that story, and to understand great details about redemption, and eternal life.

John 10:24-28   Then came the Jews round about him, and said unto him, How long dost thou make us to doubt? If thou be the Christ, tell us plainly.  Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father's name, they bear witness of me.  But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you.  My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:  And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any [man] pluck them out of my hand.

If your name was penned in the lamb’s book of life before the foundation of the world, and you are hungering and thirsting after righteousness, then you have heard his voice in the new birth, and, HE has told you plainly that HE is the Christ.

Saving Mission or Suicide Mission?

The world talks about men, missions, money, and machines to get the gospel to the fallen world, where they can coax and scare people into a state of righteousness by repentance.  But there aren’t any volunteers headed to the Andaman Islands to save the Sentinelese people.  Modern missionaries may be willing to sacrifice comfort for the sake of making converts, but who willingly takes on a suicide mission?

Even if they could get onto the island without dying, they couldn’t speak their language.  The Sentinelese can’t read any bibles or tracts given them and they absolutely aren’t going to allow a stranger to immerse them under water, however briefly.

When we examine the plight of these isolated people, how grateful should we be that salvation, the task of saving sinful man is not laid at the feet of one of Adam’s prosperity? 

2Co 5:17-20 

Aren’t you glad that the same God that set the conditions for redemption and reconciliation also met the conditions for redemption and reconciliation?


Reconciliation Primer.

If I offend my brother in some way – and no doubt, that’s happened in the past  -  if we’re not speaking, because of something I have done, I can’t go to him and say “Look – here’s how we fix this.  You accept my terms.”

My brother is the offended party.  He has to set the terms for reconciliation.  Otherwise, it won’t work.  I have relationships long in need of repair that cannot be fixed because the offended party refuses to set terms.

God is the offended party in our scenario.  Our fall in Adam and our continuation in sin make us the offenders.  God set the terms for reconciliation.  And, because we aren’t capable of meeting the terms – again, because of our sin and sinful nature, we needed a substitute to take our place.  Perfection stood in our room and stead.  God set the terms, and met the terms.

1Jo 4:10  Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.

Propitiation is one of those complicated words that get harder as you try to define it.  I’ve settled on the term satisfaction to explain propitiation.  God was satisfied in both the sinless perfection and perfect sacrifice of His son.

How are these isolated people born again?  The same way you are.  The same way Adam, Noah, David and Daniel were born again.  Each heard and experienced the life giving voice of the Son of God.  John 5:25

Primitive Baptists are an isolated people.  Among the various religions of the world, we are indeed a “little flock”  But our weak numbers don’t stop us from even further reductions:  – conservative, progressive, absoluter, and so on.  Even a group of two can divide when personal interpretation takes precedence over ‘thus sayeth the Lord.’   By comparison, it makes the handful of Sentinelese appear to be a mighty nation.

Death, Devastation, Depravity – The Sentinelese are just like us.

God gave his only son for you – to bring you back from the death and devastation of the fall in Adam’s transgression.  In so doing, he redeemed you, gave you eternal life and prepares you for a position in eternity as the bride.

It makes you special in the eyes of God. God has called you not only out of darkness into the light and a new life, but into service.

Jesus says in Joh 4 God seeketh such to worship Him.  I believe, from that small isolated group, God has sought you and called you to serve Him in this lifetime. How is that service progressing?  Do you ever wonder if God uses performance evaluations? He does.

1Pe 4:17 For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?

Not everyone is blessed to hear about Jesus, let alone the TRUE gospel.  1 Ti 4:10  For therefore we both labour and suffer reproach, because we trust in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, specially of those that believe.

While the world debates the value of hearing the preached word and eternal salvation, we can rest knowing that even among the Sentinelese isolated on that island, the Lord knoweth them that are His.

Brother Royce Ellis

AN OLD SONG (Editor’s Title)

AN OLD SONG (Editor’s Title)

   The chorus of an old song I heard many years ago has been on my mind very much recently. It goes like this: “This is the reason I am so happy and whole; sweetly I’m singing, joy bells are ringing, Jesus abides in my soul.”

   The last line gives reason to rejoice, for if Jesus did not abide in our souls, how miserable we would be. No matter what toils and struggles we have, if we have Jesus we can bear whatever is put upon us. For Jesus, who is always near, gives us the grace to overcome. Sometimes the load seems more than we can bear, but with Jesus in our souls, it is possible to overcome the pain in our hearts and forgive as we desire to be forgiven.

   Jesus is always near in good times as well as the bad, making us rejoice in His love. I can sit and sing the old hymns and rejoice while I am having a quiet place on the mountain tops. How I rejoice and thank God for His felt and manifest presence in my life. Soon our toils and troubles will be over and we shall go home to be with Him in person, also with God, the Father. All will be rejoicing then and how I long for that day when my spirit will be released to be with Him.

   Let us seek to serve Him while here on earth to show forth that Jesus does abide in our souls and that we hope one day to see His face.

—Ottie Sneed
(From “Glad Tidings”, May 1978)

   (Sister Sneed has been rejoicing in the presence of Jesus for many years now in heaven as her body awaits the resurrection and the reuniting of body, soul and Spirit.—Editor Elder Larry Wise)

ANCIENT LANDMARKS

ANCIENT LANDMARKS

"Remove not the ancient landmark, which thy fathers have set" (Pr 22:28).

The Scriptures referred to supposes that some would try to remove the ancient landmarks; that some would get tired of the boundary lines that God has set, and try to remove them. And this I believe has been attempted, now and then, all along, to the hurt of our dear people, and the cause of Christ.
The church does not progress. We can never bring it up to a higher standard than it was when Christ set it up. The great Builder of the church has not overlooked anything. His wisdom was perfect and as He said concerning the supper, "Behold all things are now ready." No wonder then we are commanded not to remove the landmarks.

The church is not too strait a way for all who are satisfied with it. It is a narrow way, I will admit, but God has made it thus, and we should be satisfied with it. Men have risen up among us and tried to remove the landmarks, both doctrinally and practically. When men get tired of God's way they want something new. The way God has arranged is the best. We should be content with it.

I left the world and joined the church because I loved their plain primitive way of worship; because I loved the doctrine they preached, and their practice. I cared but little what the world thought of me, or of them, for I well knew the world was not their friend. And as I grow older I care less for what the world thinks. Then in view of the fact that we can never improve on God's works, let us be content to go on in the good old way our fathers went.

---Elder S. N. Redford
Primitive Monitor, 1919

ANECDOTE OF A JEWISH RABBI

ANECDOTE OF A JEWISH RABBI

A learned rabbi of the Jews at Aleppo, lying dangerously ill, called his friends together and desired them seriously to consider the various former captivities endured by their nation, as a punishment for the hardness of their hearts and the present captivity which has continued 1600 years, "the occasion of which," said he, "is doubtless our unbelief. We have long looked for the Messiah; and the Christians have believed in one Jesus of our nation, who was of the seed of Abraham and David, and born in Bethlehem, and, for aught we know, may be the true Messiah; and we may have suffered this long captivity because we have rejected Him. Therefore my advice is, as my last words, that if the Messiah which we expect, does not come at or about the year 1650, reckoning from the birth of their Christ, then you may know and believe that this Jesus is the Christ, and you shall have no other."

---Biblical Magazine, 1803

ANGEL OF HIS PRESENCE

ANGEL OF HIS PRESENCE
VOICE OF THE PAST
By
 Elder Ira M. Fry

   In this world, can poor sinners find more strength than is found in Isa 63:8-9? He said, Surely, they are my people, children that will not lie; so He was their Saviour. In all their afflictions he was afflicted, and the angel of His presence saved them; in His love and in His pity He redeemed them; and bare them, and carried them all the days of old. As I want the thought, [And the angel of His presence saved them;] I'll not go into the verses following these two, dear readers, read them.

   We should rejoice in these two verses, and be so careful not to rebel, and vex His Holy Spirit.

   Rejoicing is on my mind as I look [at the angel of His presence.] May we follow it, for a few thoughts, and see how great the Angel of His presence is.

   In Ex 33, I want especially Ex 33:12-16; now Ex 33:14 and Ex 33:15 and He said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest and He [Moses] said, if thy presence go not with me, carry us not up hence. Is this not beautiful to think as Moses felt. My words, if your presence is not with us, we don't want to go. But, get the promise, God said, "My presence go with thee and I will give thee rest."

   In Ge 14:1,24 when the servant of Abraham was to go get the bride for Isaac. Verse 7 tells us God had sent His angel before thee. Please read the entire chapter and you will see how well God's angels work. Get also verse 40. The Lord before whom I walk, will send His angel with thee and prosper thy way, etc. Again, how sweet the [Angel of His presence.]

   Again, we see the Angels of His presence in Ex 23:20, Behold I send an angel before thee, to keep thee in the way, and to bring thee into the place I have prepared. And it worked, [the angel of His presence was there.] See Ex 23:23.

   Let us next notice Ex 32:34, Mine angel shall go before thee, telling Moses to lead the people. While reading here get Ex 33:2, and I will send an angel before thee; and I will drive out the Canaanites, etc. On and on we can go, get Nu 10:16. How great this angel is, see Da 3:28 and His angel delivered His servants that trusted in Him, etc. Da 6:22, we hear Daniel say, My God sent His angel, and hath shut the lions mouth, etc.

   Over in the new Ac 12:11 Peter said, I know of a surety that the Lord hath sent His angel and both delivered me out of the hand of Herod, and from all the expectation of the people of the Jews.

   Truly, there is no place to stop. Let us read Re 21, and still find the angels of God at work.

   Dear readers, I guess I looked at this thought [of the angel of His presence], and felt to rejoice for its presence.

   Truly, we are made to rejoice as we feel how great our God is.

   Let us pray for all our dear churches.

   In sweet bonds,
   [Elder] Ira M. Fry From The Banner of Love, November 1973
(From “The Banner of Love”, Mat 2001)

Angels Around The Throne Of God

Angels in shining order sit Around my Saviour’s throne;

They bow with reference at His feet, and make His glories known.

These happy spirits sing His praise To all eternity;

But I can sing redeeming grace, For Jesus died for me.

I love the poetry of this verse. Angels around the throne of God is strongly evidenced in Isa 6:2. We also know that there are many angels as taught in Mt 26:53. Then in Isa 6:3 the angels give praise to God. I also believe that angels are created beings, for if they are not, then they would have to be eternal and it seems to me that God is the only eternal being. According to Job 38:6 the angels sang the praise of God in the dawn of time, for the perfection of His creation. Yet, angels cannot sing the song of redemption. Only redeemed souls can sing that song. Angels even desire to look into the precious gospel we hear on a regular basis (1Pe 1:12). This makes the work of Jesus even more precious, for those, once steeped in sin, undone, worthless, polluted, and unworthy, who have been cleansed by the blood of Jesus can sing the song of redemption. To be redeemed means delivered from bondage, distress, penalty, liability, or from the possession of another. Paul teaches us in Eph 4:8 that the very thing that had captived God’s children was lead captive by Jesus Christ. This simply means that Jesus paid the price of redemption that set His children free from the penalty of sin and death. Or to put it in the context of the song, Jesus died for me! 

Elder Freddy Boen

ANGER & ANGRY WORDS

by Eld. Joe Holder

Under the command to love one another, angry words, anger in the heart, is exactly what Jesus called it in the sermon on the mount.  It is the equivalent of ethical murder.  You are killing someone with hateful and angry words.  Does it bother anyone that we try to rationalize or justify conduct that in scripture is more characteristic of a evil, unsaved person than of the righteous?  It can't be rationalized - it's wrong.  It's the enemy crouching, ready to pounce and it has us on it's mind for dinner and we're sitting there saying, "oh, I'm just anxious to have dinner with you."  You don't understand - you're going to be the dinner.  You're not going to have dinner with this emotion, it's going to have YOU -  it's going to serve YOU up on the platter.

ANGRY FAITH

by Elder Joe Holder
Hear below at:  Angry Faith

I enjoy reading the reformers, - Luther, Calvin, Zwingli and all of those folks but I have to tell you I am somewhat turned off by all of them because there is an underlined anger in their writings that is not edifying and doesn't do any of us any good.  If we had lived in that time, perhaps we would have done the same thing.  I'm not saying we're better.  I'm just saying that spirit, like it's appearance in Cain will drive you farther away from God, not bring you closer to Him.  Angry faith is not biblical faith at all, but a pretence.  And when I focus my anger against you because I don't agree with something that you did or that I don't think you treated me fairly about something I may in fact be bidding a rebellious heart that is angry with God, and by the very act of giving place and feeding and fertilizing that attitude I am in fact moving myself farther away from where I have good reason and hope to meet with God in worship and fellowship than I would be without it.  I'm not getting closer to God by anger, I'm getting farther away from Him by anger.  I don't need to go into the details - they are not relevant to this issue, but early in mine and Sandra's marriage we became coincidentally involved in some church controversy.  I tried to convince myself that I was right and those other folks were wrong.  I tried to convince myself that what I had done was the upstanding thing to do.  The episode lasted over two years.  My friends, for two years I wrestled with an angry spirit, an angry heart.  I have read in the Puritans of that beautiful methaphorical language of the English people with their own language that we need to go back and learn more how to respect and to use, that describe the moments when they struggled in prayer, when they tried to pray and it just didn't seem like things were right, that it seemed as if iron bars closed the opening of heaven to their prayers.  I know that feeling.  I lived with it for two years.  Every prayer I tried to pray I felt hypocritical.  I didn't feel genuinely convicted that those prayers were heard and it was not until I confronted and neutralized the anger in my own heart that I found the genuine joy of restored fellowship with God and I have to confess looking back - I was angry with God, not just with the people that received the focus of my anger.  I can speak from experience and I can tell you anger will not draw you closer to God.  You can be as holy as you wish, you can rationalize as much as you wish that that person or those people did something that did you wrong.  It doesn't matter . . .  you'll wake up some day at a distance from God, not closer.  Hear my warning!  It is real.

Angry Words

Hear at: Angry Words

ANOTHER CHAPTER IN MY LIFE’S JOURNEY

ANOTHER CHAPTER IN MY LIFE’S JOURNEY
By Doris Webb Smith
Milan, Tennessee

   After losing my dear husband of 52 years and trying to live alone with a few minor disabilities. I asked the Lord to help me make an important decision of changing my residence. So with agreement and encouragement from my children and my pastor, I downsized to one room into an ‘Assisted Living’. What a change!

   But I really felt the Spirit of the Lord with me in finding this beautiful place—and getting to know so many dear people in similar but different circumstances. I have talked with some who have told me of their past misfortune and troubled lives. (It makes me humbly count my blessings).

   And when we have our large group together for devotional and sacred singing, I look into their faces who are from different churches and beliefs, I realize that they are all good Christian people who are sharing the occasion of loving and praising their Lord in their later years.”

    --Doris Webb Smith

APT TO FIGHT or APT TO TEACH

APT TO FIGHT or APT TO TEACH

By Brother Hassell Holder

Burnsville, Mississippi

 

   This little three letter word is only found four times in the Bible; twice in the Old Testament and twice in the New Testament. Those two times in the Old Testament had reference to people who were able or were of the mind to go to war or fight.  And the two places in the New Testament had reference to people who were apt to teach; and the two were bishops and servants.  There were several explanations of the meaning of the word “apt” in the dictionary, which I will not list.

 

   It is my humble belief that the lack of teaching what the Primitive Baptists believe has led to the condition of our churches. I came up in the era of all preach and no teach.  I did not have the Bible read to me and was not taught to read the Bible after I got old enough to read.

 

   I heard it preached that if teaching as in Sunday Schools was needed, it would be mentioned in the Bible, and women and teenagers and Sunday School literature that was used in these other orders of people were all wrong. That may all be true (and it is—Editor) to a point, but to not teach the Bible doctrine that we as Primitive Baptists believe is just like sending a child to school; that laid its books up on the shelf and did not read or study its lesson. You know what would happen? That child would stay in and get its lesson up, and a note would be sent home to the parents.

 

   I do not know how many other families in the church I attended practiced what mine did, but I know that there were lots of families with more children than were in my family; and not a one of those children ever joined a Primitive Baptist Church. Does that not tell you something?

 

   I was about fifty five years old when the Lord put it upon me to join the church.  I realized how ignorant I was about the Bible.  I asked an older Elder, who I respected, how to try understanding the Bible teachings that I did not understand. He told me to get myself a concordance and a dictionary (they are definitely helpful—Editor). You know he made a mistake.  I found out that teaching is found in the Bible as much as preaching, and teachers are listed as the last of those five gifts, just after pastors.

 

   I have heard it preached from the pulpit that only the parents are supposed to teach their children. I must have not found that yet. It does say that the parents are supposed to bring their children up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, and I am sure that includes reading and teaching the Bible to them. Who are those faithful men who are qualified to teach the scriptures supposed to teach, just adults?  The apostle Paul states in two places that he was an apostle, preacher, and a teacher. And in one place he taught for two years, and he even taught from house to house.  I believe if it was researched, it would be proven that Jesus done more teaching than preaching.  Of course there was a lot of people in that day that did not like their teaching, just like some of our ancestors did not think that any teaching of the Bible is needed, just all preach and no teach. But they were strong on that doctrine business. But you know I looked the definition of doctrine, and you would be amazed what I found that meaning of that word is.  Brother Mac ought not to have told me about that concordance and that dictionary, and I would have lived in ignorance about everything.

 

   Some of the practices, customs and traditions that our forefathers started, and were continued for several generations, have led to our decline; like just meeting once a month as in circuit rider days, which was continued until not many years ago. I have heard the excuse that we can’t ask our pastor to come and preach for us every Sunday because we just have a small congregation, and we can’t pay him enough.  And he can go and preach at other churches those Sundays, and they can help him. And if we can get a way to go, we can go and hear him there.  I wonder if they ever thought that if they met every Sunday, the Lord might add to their congregation, and their problem would be solved.  But that is all hind sight. The practice of one Elder trying to pastor four or five churches, especially if they are very far apart, and he has a secular job, is that he may go and preach for them; but pastor all those churches right? No.

 

   Why do those churches of other orders of people have a pastor’s home at or near their church or in their community, town or city? You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to see what we as Primitive Baptists have been up against.  All you have to do is make a few rounds with your pastor and your eyes will be opened.  Some of those other orders of people make the statement that if they can get a child by the age of six years and start teaching it what they believe about the Bible, they won’t lose them.  And Primitive Baptists don’t teach, or have not in the past, taught their children what we believe the Bible teaches, and we lose them to other winds of doctrine.

 

   We have had members of the church I belong to that did not or do not believe in having a Wednesday night Bible study, even though we had some additions to the church as a result, and four young men who attended those Bible studies were later called to preach and were ordained; two in our church and two in other churches in the area. And I was able to understand the Bible better from those Bible studies than all my life before from just hearing preaching.  I was like that eunuch. I needed somebody to guide me.

 

   This was not written because I have an axe to grind with anybody because I would have to lay it at my own family and my own door. It is hoped that no one will make the same mistake that my parents made, and I made in raising my children.

 

   In Christian love,

   Hassell Holder—Member of Little Flock Primitive Baptist Church, Burnsville, MS.

 

   (Remarks—It should be noted that not only the Primitive Baptists are declining in members, but also other religious orders are experiencing the same thing, even with their outreach.  Not everyone will agree with some of the things written by Brother Holder, but it is as he observed, it all comes back to the parents.  After all is said and done, who is responsible for their children? It is not the church, but the parents.—Editor)

Are you for or against?

To my preach brethren, my friends, a question: At this point in your ministry have you devoted more time in the pulpit to being for something or against something?

Follow up questions: Now, what have you been for or against? Was your motive to be received or that sinners might receive the truth? Do you spend more time in the pulpit explaining what you said or what scriptures say? If you observe the response and lives of your congregations, how has your labor affected them?

Do these thoughts "cut to the heart" or "prick you in the heart"? Mercy!

Elder Carl Staten

Are You Saved?

Are You Saved?
Written by Ben Winslett  
 
I attempted to speak tonight at Union PBC near Woodville that there are two types of salvation, or deliverance, found in the Bible. One is the unconditional, eternal, everlasting salvation wrought by Christ on the Cross. The other is conditional, occurring in time, and is based upon our obeying Christ.

However (here is my point), while we know this and believe it to be true, merely understanding temporal salvation on a cognitive level is not the point. Actually saving yourself from the "untoward generation" is the point. There are two roads in this world - one broad and destructive and one narrow which leads to life.

Points to consider about the strait gate:
1. Devote yourself to Christ. Pr 3:5 (This is of chief importance, without Christ even Bible based religion is vain - see the Pharisees.)
2. Devote yourself to His Word. Ps 119:9-12
3. Devote yourself to His Church/Kingdom. Mt 6:33

Armament of the Good Soldier of Jesus Christ

ARMAMENT Of The GOOD SOLDIER OF JESUS CHRIST

(2Ti 2:3; Eph 6:13)

jcs

2Ti 2:3Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ.

Eph 6:13Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

Hosea mournfully proclaims, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge …” (Ho 4:6). He explains the cause and the consequences of their destruction this way, “As they were increased, so they sinned against me: therefore will I change their glory into shame” (Ho 4:7). In New Testament times the Laodiceans were likewise rebuked for their spiritual lethargy and warned of the consequences of not correcting their error (Revelations 3:17). The same spiritual lethargy with the associated consequences is similarly present with us today. Our nation is likewise increased with prosperity, ease, and benefits on every hand, yet, just as Israel did, we as a nation of exceptionally well-blessed people engage in grievous sin against the God who has so abundantly blessed us. But even more grievous is that this Laodicean Sin is likewise prevalent in our Churches. We seem to be lethargically content to rest with self-satisfaction in our ease. It was this kind of ease and unconcern for truth that was present in the Northern nation of Israel, prompting the doleful message, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge …”. Their glory was indeed changed into shame when the King of Assyria carried “away Israel unto Assyria” “because they obeyed not the voice of the Lord their God” (2Ki 19:9-12).

It is certain that Paul’s knowledge of Israel’s sin and the consequential destruction moved him to exclaim, “Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they might be saved” (Ro 10:1). He would later write to Timothy, “Thou therefore endure hardness, as a good soldier of Jesus Christ” (2Ti 2:3). Paul well knew that Timothy would face arduous ministerial duties that would expend his natural strength, compelling him to lean exclusively upon the Word Of God. For this reason Paul instructed the young preacher to “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth” (2Ti 2:15). Paul charged Timothy to “Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season …” (2Ti 4:1-2), knowing that the time would come when “they shall turn away their ears from the truth” (2Ti 4:4). It is quite evident that today there has been a great turning away “from the truth”. Without the solid foundation (Ps 11:3) of “the truth” of God and His great works and commandments, or as Hosea termed it “knowledge” (Ho 4:6), we face a troubled future. The great challenge before us is to “reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine” (i.e. preach and teach the word/truth of God with candor and clarity in such a way as to exhort God’s people to learn “the truth” of God; in particular His mighty works of salvation and His commandments that we are to obey). So daunting is this task that Paul employed the “good soldier” analogy when charging Timothy.

The history of our nation’s first leaders exemplifies the “good soldier” analogy. During the American Revolutionary War the British forces peaked at about 50,000 men plus the Indian Nations and those loyal to the King of England. The British Army was well-equipped and well-trained and enjoyed ample supplies for themselves and the Indian Nations who fought with them.

The Continental Army frailly peaked at about 20,000 men who were both ill-equipped and ill-trained. In the winter of 1777 - 1778, General George Washington took his Army to Valley Forge, Pennsylvania to wait out the winter. On December 23, 1777, General Washington wrote, “We have this day no less than 2,873 men in camp unfit for duty because they are barefooted and otherwise naked”. General Washington entered Valley Forge with some 11,000 men. It is reported that more than 3,000 men died during that period. In spite of the Army being physically ill equipped they ultimately emerged victorious. There was an uncommonly able spirit among this physically feeble American Army. Captain Nathan Hale candidly and powerfully demonstrated this spirit when he, just before being executed by the British, cried out, “I only regret that I have but one life to lose for my country”.

In his farewell address, General Washington expressed the need for soldiers to be well-equipped and ready for battle. General Washington said, “We may rely upon it that we shall never have peace till the enemy are convinced that we are in a condition to carry out the war. It is no new maxim in politics that for a nation to obtain peace, or insure it, it must be prepared for war”.

It is quite obvious that liberty was not obtained during the Revolutionary War by an overwhelmingly powerful military nor by the extraordinary experience of the military leaders. The cause and means of our ancestors’ successful quest for liberty is embodied in President Thomas Jefferson’s “National Prayer” in which he wrote:

Almighty God, Who has given us this good land for our heritage; we humbly beseech thee that we may always prove ourselves a people mindful of Thy favor and glad to do Thy will. Bless our land with honorable industry, sound learning, and pure manners.

Save us from violence, discord, and confusion, from pride and arrogance, and from every evil way. Defend our liberties, and fashion into one united people the multitude brought hither out of many kindreds and tongues.

Endow with the spirit of wisdom those to whom in Thy Name we entrust the authority of government, that there may be justice and peace at home, and that through obedience to Thy law, we may show forth Thy praise among the nations of the earth.”

The Apostle Paul did not whimsically use the “good soldier” analogy, but he used it purposefully to communicate the austerity of duty and the high level of commitment and preparedness required of a “good soldier” in the service of our Lord Jesus Christ.

To be “prepared for war” the soldier must have the best possible armament and be trained in its use. While this is also true for the “good soldier of Jesus Christ”, we must know that “the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds” (2Co 10:4). When inspected with the natural eye, the “good soldier of Jesus Christ” appears quite frail and ill equipped. When inspected with the eye of faith, the “good soldier of Jesus Christ” is observed to possess weapons that are “mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds”. These spiritual weapons do not glisten in the sun, they do not smell of machine oil, their use is not deafening; neither do they break or jam in the moments of greatest need. Though subtle and humble they may appear, these spiritual “weapons” will assure victory for the “good soldier” who so equipped.

During the revolutionary war the Continental Army was equipped with black powder rifles, muskets, and cannons along with bayonets, knives, and swords. The “good soldier of Jesus Christ” is likewise armed, albeit with a different sort of armament.

With a poetic flare, Paul describes the well-equipped (“whole armour”)good soldier” by comparing the spiritual armament tocarnal” armament (Eph 6:13-17).

CARNAL               SPIRITUAL

Girdle                            Truth

Breastplate                    Righteousness

Footwear                      Gospel

Shield                           Faith

Helmet                          Salvation

Sword                           Word Of God

While CARNAL armaments are known to fail in the heat of the battle, the use of SPIRITUAL armaments is known to assure victory. In the example of human conflict, it is certain that the Colonies would not have succeeded in their quest for liberty had there not been a gracious God on scene to equip them with the “whole armour”. But, in that God was with them (Ro 8:31), it was certain that those who were against them would not prevail. So it is with the “good soldier of Jesus Christ” who is well equipped with the “whole armour” of God.

The battlefield objective for the “good soldier” is “to stand against the wiles of the devil” (Eph 6:11) “in the evil day” (Eph 6:13). Peter warns the “good soldier” to “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour” (1Pe 5:8). The devil can be ominous and fearsome, but when faced with a well-equipped “good soldier”, he is rendered pitifully helpless, as was Goliath before David (1Sa 17:23). While the devil does enjoy some victories in this life, it must be noted that these victories are not eternal. He can and does wreak havoc in the life of a “soldier” who is found without his “whole armour”. Peter describes this havoc as “afflictions” (1Pe 5:9). These “afflictions” are thrust upon us in the form of hopelessness, depression, fear, anxiety, illness, loneliness, and etc. Without the “whole armourfamilies are ripped asunder leaving pain and suffering in the wake; the young rise to adulthood to wander about in humanistic chaos; abortions cruelly take the precious “fruit of the womb” (Ps 127:3); alcoholism and drug addiction rob us of reality, strength, and prosperity; greed and the quest for power at the expense of others steal joy and peace from us; Churches are dead and dying because of cancerous lethargy and misguided allegiances and teachings. All this and more afflicts the “soldiers” who are caught without their “whole armour”!

In equipping the “good soldier” with his armament, Paul first lists the “truth” which he equates to a “soldier” “girding” himself for battle. Pilate asked the golden question when he said, “What is truth?” (Joh 18:38). Pilate then proclaimed the “truth” when he said, “I find in him no fault at all”, (Joh 18:38). To emphasize the surety of the “truth”, Pilate proclaimed that there was “no fault in him” again in Joh 19:4 and then a third time in Joh 19:6. In His personal testimony of Himself, Jesus proclaimed, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (Joh 14:6). “by me” does not mean that Jesus simply prepared and then offered a way to the Father. It does mean that by Christ alone, the elect are eternally saved and effectually called to the Father.

As we examine the “truth” of Jesus Christ we find that He is the “only begotten Son” (Heb 11:17) of God, that Christ and The Father are one (Joh 10:30), and that He came to do and did do His Father’s will (Joh 6:38). The “truth” then is that “this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which he hath given me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up again at the last day” (Joh 6:39). The Gospel “truth” then is that Christ has not and will not lose even one that the Father has given to him. The truth brings freedom (Joh 8:32); thus, hope, peace, and joy in spite of the trials we encounter.

The “good soldier” is to “girt” himself with the great “truth” of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. This great “truth” includes such elements of armament as:

  1. De 4:39 SOVEREIGNTY God is in every respect unlimited in power and authority. Whatsoever He has determined to do, that He will do. He does not seek nor require the counsel of the man He created. All authorities and powers are subject to the omnipotent God.
  2. Eph 1:4 CHOSE/ELECTEDAccording as he Father hath chosen us in him Christ Jesus before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before him in love”. This choosing denotes a loving relationship wherein God loved His elect to the extent He would bring about their holiness through the sacrifice of His only begotten Son.
  3. Eph 1:5 PREDESTINATEDHaving predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will” God determined “before the foundation of the world” that the elect would surely be His own. The term “adoption” is used because Jesus Christ is the “only begotten Son” of God. The election and calling of the God’s children is as sure as God is Himself. Note that the “adoption” was “according the good pleasure of his will”. The will of man was not a factor. The will of man is conformed to the will of God in rebirth in which the Child of God comes forth from the experience as a “new creature”, loving and desiring the will of his Creator, God.
  4. Eph 1:7 REDEEMED Christ redeemed (bought them out of the bondage of sin and its ruinous penalty) the elect from sin through His own blood sacrifice. Note that it was “his blood” and not “his blood” plus some contribution from man. It was His blood alone that paid the sin debt.
  5. Eph 1:7 FORGIVENESS Because of Christ’s great sacrifice the elect NOW enjoys “forgiveness of sins”.
  1. Eph 1:11 INHERITANCE The elect “have obtained an inheritance” (eternal life, heaven) because He “worketh all things (in particular, the things concerning the elect’s eternal salvation) after the counsel of his own will”. The will of man is in no way part of the cause of eternal salvation, but man’s will to obediently serve God is a consequence of God’s election and calling. Note the phrase “have obtained” is used declaratively, giving us to understand that the great work of salvation is completed and the redeemed are and have always been secure in Christ Jesus.
  2. Eph 1:14 REDEMPTION OF THE PURCHASED POSSESSION The born again elect are in possession of a faith-based hope and are sure that God will ultimately redeem (come to get) His “purchased possession” at the end of time.

In his desire to “establish” (Ro 1:11) the Roman brethren, Paul expresses the same “truth” but in different terms.

  1. Ro 3:23 ALL ARE SINNERS All (of mankind) are sinners; thus, without such purity as was necessary to bring about redemption.
  2. Ro 8:29 FOREKNOW Those who were foreknown (before the foundation of the world, Eph 1:4) are those that God has chosen to love and to redeem. In that He has foreknown a people, He has foreloved them.
  3. Ro 8:29 PREDESTINATE Those that “he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his son”. He set their destiny to be changed so as to be as pure and sinless as Jesus Christ.
  4. Ro 8:30 CALLED Those “whom he did predestinate, them he also called”. Those who are the recipients of this “effectual call” respond to the Father’s call, in some manner pleasing to God, in this life and then ultimately in the resurrection (Joh 6:37; 1Th 5:13-18; Mt 24:31).
  5. Ro 8:30 JUSTIFIED Those “whom he called, them he also justified”. To be justified is to be rendered sinless, as if they had never sinned. Without this sinless state, the elect could never enter eternal glory.
  6. Ro 8:30 GLORIFIED Those “whom he justified, them he also glorified”. To be glorified is to be raised up from the unworthy state of sinfulness to a position of honor and majesty (1Pe 2:9), ultimately to be raised from corruption to incorruption at the resurrection (1Co 15:42).

Paul then proclaims, “What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?Ro 8:31. In Eph 2:8-9, Paul emphasizes that these wonderful works are beyond human means to obtain when he writes, “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works lest any man should boast.” It must be noted here that this is not an offer and acceptance proposition, because Christ has already stated “All that the Father giveth me shall come to me; and him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out.” Thus we are to understand the “truth”, that our God is truly omnipotent, that He has preserved Ps 37:28; 2Ti 4:18; Jude 1 His elect unto eternal life and that He “delivers” His elect from the awful trials of this life (2Co 1:10).

As a “soldier” would gather and place within his “girdle” those essential items for sustenance and battle, so must the “good soldier of Jesus Christ” “girt” himself with the “truth of the sovereignty of God and of His wondrous works of “salvation by grace”.

When equipped with this “truth” one can say with Paul, “For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Ro 8:38-39). This “truthwill, without question, sustain and deliver the “good soldier who willing and faithfully faces the adversary upon the battlefields of Divine service. However, without being empowered with the “truth” of the sovereign God, we are left to wander about, leaning upon carnal weapons that are sure to fail us in the hour of greatest need.

May we be found on the battlefields of life thoroughly equipped with the “whole armour” of God, thus overcoming the “wiles of the devil”!

Elder J. C. Stanaland

ARMINIANISM MAKES THE GIFT OF CHRIST A CURSE

ARMINIANISM MAKES THE GIFT OF CHRIST A CURSE

If Arminianism be true it makes the gift of Christ the greatest curse ever inflicted upon the world. According to that system it is the height of injustice in God to condemn those who "had no chance of being saved." Now, if Christ had not come, no man could have had a chance of salvation. It would then have been unjust in God to send any man to hell. But Christ came, and as the result of His death every man has sufficient grace to be saved according to this theory, which sufficient grace is yet insufficient in many cases to save men and they are therefore damned. Had they never had grace they would never have been lost, it would have been unjust. But obtaining grace in consequence of Christ's advent, they can justly be damned, and are damned to all eternity. Damnation by grace! Such is the grace Arminianism presents. If Christ had not come, all would have escaped hell, but in consequence of His death millions and tens of millions are punished there to all eternity. We are made to wonder how anyone divinely taught can accept this doctrine. Dear child of God, from such turn away and embrace the plain, comforting truths of the gospel.

---Elder William H. Crouse
Zion's Advocate, 1903

ARTICLES OF FAITH

GILL:
And as to articles of faith or things to be believed, we have a creed, made mention of in
Heb 6:1-2 consisting of six articles; repentance from dead works, faith towards God, the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment. These are commonly thought to be so many articles of the Christian faith; but I rather think[1] they are so many articles of the Jewish Creed, embraced and professed by believers under the Jewish dispensation; since the Christian Hebrews are directed to consider them as the principles of the doctrine of Christ, as an introduction, and as leading on to it, and which were in some sense to be "left" and not "laid again"; they were not to stick and stop here, but to go on to perfection, by searching into and embracing doctrines more sublime and perfect, revealed in the Gospel; at least they were not to be any longer instructed in the above articles in the manner they had been, but in a clearer manner, unattended with legal ceremonies, to view them and make use of them. Thus for instance, they, the believers, Christian Hebrews, were not to learn the doctrine of repentance from slain beasts or to signify it by them, as they had been used to do; for every sacrifice brought for sin, which they were no longer obliged to, was a tacit confession and an acknowledgment of sin, and that they repented of it, and deserved to die as the creature did; but now they were to exercise evangelical repentance in the view of a crucified Christ, and remission of sin by his blood: and whereas they had been taught to have "faith towards God," as the God of Israel, they were now moreover to believe in Christ as the Son of God, the true Messiah, the Saviour of lost sinners, without the intervention of sacrifices. See Joh 14:1. The "doctrine of baptisms," is to be understood of the divers baptisms, or bathings among the Jews, spoken of in Heb 9:10, which had a doctrine in them, teaching the cleansing virtue of the blood of Christ to wash in for sin and for uncleanness; which they were no more to learn in this way, but to apply immediately to the blood of Christ for it. And the doctrine of "laying on of hands" respects the laying on of the hands of the priests and people on the head of the sacrifices, which instructed in that great and evangelical truth, the transfer and imputation of sin to Christ, offered up in the room and stead of his people; and which was to be taught and learnt no longer in that manner, since Christ was now made sin for his people, and had had their sins imputed to him, which he had bore in his own body on the tree: and as for the doctrines of the "resurrection of the dead and eternal judgment," they were such as distinguished Jews and Gentiles, which latter were greatly strangers to a future state; and though they were common to Jews and Christians, yet the believing Hebrews were not to rest in the knowledge they had of these, as enjoyed under the former dispensation; but to go on to perfection; and to press forward towards a greater share of knowledge of them and of other more sublime doctrines; since life and immortality were brought to light by Christ in a clearer and brighter manner through the Gospel. But all that I mean by this is, that the principal doctrines of faith under the Jewish dispensation are reduced to a system; though to be improved and perfected under the Gospel dispensation. Those articles were but few; though Gregory observes, that according to the increase of times, the knowledge of saints increased, and the nearer they were to the coming of the Saviour the more fully they perceived the mysteries of salvation: and so the articles in the formulas and symbols of the first Christians were but few, suitable to the times in which they lived, and as opposite to the errors then broached; and which were increased by new errors that sprung up, which made an increase of articles necessary; otherwise the same articles of faith were believed by the ancients as by later posterity, as Aquinas concludes by saying:

 

“Articles of faith have increased by succession of times, not indeed as to the substance, but as to the explanation and express profession of them; for what are explicitly and under a greater number believed by posterity, all the same were believed by the fathers before them, implicitly and under a lesser number.”

 

It is easy to observe, that the first summaries of faith recorded by the most ancient writers went no further than the doctrine of the Trinity, or what concerns the Three Divine Persons; the doctrines of the heretics of the first ages being opposed to one or other of them: but when other heresies sprung up and other false doctrines were taught, it became necessary to add new articles, both to explain, defend, and secure truth, and to distinguish those who were found in the faith of the Gospel from those that were not.

 

   Mention is made in the New Testament of a "form of doctrine delivered," and a "form of sound words" that had been "heard" and was to be "held fast," and of a proportion or analogy of faith, according to which ministers were to prophesy or preach; the first of these is spoken of in Ro 6:17 —-"But ye have obeyed from the heart that form of doctrine which was delivered to you"; which is not to be understood of the Scriptures or written word delivered unto them; but of the Gospel and the doctrines of it preached by the apostle in the ministry of the word to the Romans, which they had yielded the obedience of faith unto, and which was tupov, a "type," or pattern, as the word is rendered, Heb 8:5 and an "example," 1Ti 4:12 according to which they were to conform their faith and practice; and which in the next place referred to, 2Ti 1:13 is called upotupwsiv, translated a "pattern," Eph 1:16 a form exactly expressed, always to be had in view, to be attended to, and followed; and a delineation, such as a picture or the outlines of a portrait given by painters to their learners, always to be looked unto and imitated; and such a form the apostle proposed to Timothy, carefully to respect and give information of to others as a rule of faith and practice;[2] which cannot be understood of the Scriptures, though of what is agreeable to them; since it is what Timothy had "heard" of the apostle, either in his private conversation, or in his public ministry, even a set of Gospel doctrines collected out of the Scriptures and confirmed by them, reduced into a system; and thus the apostle himself reduces his ministry to these two heads, "repentance towards God," and "faith towards the Lord" Jesus Christ, Ac 20:21. And a rich summary and glorious compendium and chain of Gospel truths does he deliver, Ro 8:30 worthy, as a form and pattern, to Gospel ministers to attend unto, and according to it to regulate their ministrations. Once more, the apostle speaks of a "proportion" or an "analogy of faith," in Ro 12:6. "Whether prophesy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith"; by which "faith" Calvin, on the text observes, are meant the first axioms of religion, to which whatsoever doctrine is not found to answer is convicted of falsehood. And so Piscator, upon the words, according to the analogy of faith, that is, so as that the interpretation of Scripture we bring is analogous to the articles of faith, that is, agreeing with them and consenting to them, and not repugnant: and Parseus on the text is more express saying:

 

“Analogy, is not the same as "measure" (Ro 12:3) for measure is of one thing measured, but analogy is between two things that are analogous; but the apostle seems to describe something more, namely, to prescribe a rule by which all prophesying is to be directed; therefore by faith others understand the rule of Scripture and the axioms of faith, such as are comprehended in the Symbol of the Apostolic faith (or the Apostles’ Creed) which have in them a manifest truth from the Scriptures. "Analogy" is the evident harmony of faith and consent of the heads (or articles) of faith, to which whatever agrees is true, and whatever disagrees is false and adulterate. This is the rule of all prophesying (or preaching); therefore, according to the rule of the sacred Scripture and the Apostles’ Creed, all interpretations, disputations, questions, and opinions in the church, are to be examined, that they may be conformable thereunto.”

 

And though what is now called the Apostles’ Creed might not be composed by them, nor so early as their time; yet the substance of it was agreeable to their doctrine, and therefore called theirs; and there was a "regula fidei," a rule of faith, very near it in words, received, embraced, and professed very early in the Christian church; which Tertullian gives in these words,

 

“The rule of faith is truly one, solely immoveable and irreformable (not to be corrected and mended); namely, of believing in the only God Almighty, the maker of the world, and in his Son Jesus Christ, born of the virgin Mary, crucified under Pontius Pilate, raised from the dead on the third day, received into heaven, sitting now at the right hand of the Father, who will come to judge the quick and dead by or at the resurrection of the dead.”

 

And such a set of principles these, as or what are similar to them and accord with the word of God, may be called the analogy of faith. And a late writer observes on the word "analogy";

 

“The analogy of faith, our divines call the sum of heavenly doctrine concerning articles of faith, taken out of such passages of Scripture, where, as in their proper place, they are treated of in clear and plain words.”

 

Upon the whole, it seems no ways incongruous with the sacred writings, but perfectly agreeable to them, that articles and heads of faith, or a summary of gospel truths, may be collected from them, to declare explicitly our belief of them, to strengthen the faith of others in them, to show our agreement in them with other Christians in the principal parts of them, and to distinguish ourselves from those who oppose the faith once delivered to the saints.

 

   It is strongly pleaded, that articles and confessions of faith, in which men are to agree, should be expressed in the bare words of the sacred Scriptures, and that nothing should be considered as a fundamental article that is matter of controversy: as to the latter, if that was admitted, there would be scarce any article at all left us to believe; for what is there almost that is believed, but what is controverted by some, nor any passage of Scripture brought in support of it, but the sense of it is called in question, or perverted? for as Clemens of Alexandria says,

 

“I do not think there is any scripture so happy as to be contradicted by none.”

 

As to the former, that we are to be tied up to the bare words of Scripture concerning any doctrine of faith delivered in them; though we ought to entertain the highest esteem of the words of Scripture, and have the greatest value for them, as being clothed with such majesty, and having such an energy in them, which the words that man’s wisdom teacheth have not; yet our sense of them cannot be expressed but in words literally varying from them: and it should be settled what is meant by bare words of Scripture, whether of the original text, Hebrew and Greek, or of any translation, as English, &c.; if the words of a translation, a man cannot be sure that this always does express the sense of Scripture, especially in passages difficult and controverted; if of the original, then both he that makes the confession, and they to whom it is made, ought to understand Hebrew and Greek; and even every member of a church where a confession of faith is required in order to communion; and if this is to be made in the bare words of Scripture, be it in the words of a translation, without an explanation of their sense of them in other words, it might introduce into a Christian community all sorts of errors that can be named, which would be utterly inconsistent with its peace, concord, harmony, and union: moreover, to be obliged to express ourselves only in the words of Scripture, would be

 

1. To destroy all exposition and interpretation of Scripture; for without words different from, though agreeable to, the sacred Scriptures, we can never express our sense of them, nor explain them to others according to the sense we have entertained of them; and though no scripture is of private interpretation, or a man’s own interpretation, so as to be obliging on others, yet by this means it will become of no interpretation at all, private or public, of a man’s own or of others. It is indeed sometimes said that "Scripture is the best interpreter of Scripture," and which in some respects is true; as when, for the better understanding of a passage of Scripture, another more clear and explicit is set unto it and compared with it, and which serves to throw light on it and give a clearer discernment of it, and of its true sense; but then that light, discernment, and sense, cannot be expressed but in words literally different from them both.

 

2. To be obliged to express ourselves about divine things in the bare words of Scripture, must tend to make the ministry and preaching of the word in a great measure useless; for them a minister of the word would have nothing else to do but to repeat or read some select passages of Scripture relating to any particular subject, or collect a string of them, which refer to the same subject, and deliver them without attempting any illustration of them, or making use of any reasonings from them, to explain or strengthen any point of doctrine contained in them; so that the people in common may as well, in a manner, stay at home and read the Scriptures in their private houses, as to attend on public ministrations. Surely the apostle Paul, when he “reasoned out of the Scriptures, opening and alleging that Christ must needs have suffered and risen again from the dead, and that this Jesus whom he preached was Christ, Ac 17:2-3” must in these his reasonings, explanations, and allegations, use his own words; which though they accorded with the Scriptures, must literally vary from them out of which he reasoned, and by which he elucidated and confirmed his arguments concerning the Messiahship of Jesus, his suffering of death, and resurrection from the dead: and though he said no other as to substance than what Moses and the prophets said concerning Christ, yet in words different from theirs. According to this scheme all public ministrations must be at an end, as well as all writing in defence of truth and for the confutation of errors; yea

 

3. This must in a great measure cramp all religious conversation about divine things, if not destroy it. To what purpose is it for them that fear God to meet frequently and speak often one to another about the things of God and truths of the Gospel, if they are not to make use of their own words to express their sense of these things by them? and how in this way can their Christian conferences be to mutual edification? how can they build up one another in their most holy faith? how can weaker and less experienced Christians receive any advantage from more knowing and stronger ones, if only they are to declare their sense of things in the bare words of Scripture?

 

4. Indeed, as Dr. Owen says,[3] if this is the case, as it would be unlawful to speak or write otherwise than in the words of Scripture, so it would be unlawful to think or conceive in the mind any other than what the Scripture expresses: the whole of what he says on this subject is worth repeating:

 

“To deny the liberty, yea, the necessity hereof, (that is, of making use of such words and expressions, as it may be, are not literally and formally contained in Scripture, but only are unto our conceptions and apprehensions expository of what is so contained) is to deny all interpretation of the Scripture, all endeavours to express the sense of the words of it unto the understandings of one another, which is, in a word, to render the Scripture itself altogether useless; if it is unlawful for me to speak or write what I conceive to be the sense of the words of scripture and the nature of the thing signified and expressed by them, it is unlawful for me also to think or conceive in my mind what is the sense of the words or nature of the things; which to say is to make brutes of ourselves, and to frustrate the whole design of God in giving unto us the great privilege of his word.”

 

5. In this way, the sentiments of one man in any point of religion cannot be distinguished from those of another, though diametrically opposite; so an Arian cannot be known from an Athanasian both will say, in the words of Scripture, that Christ is the "great God," the "true God," and "over all God blessed for ever"; but without expressing themselves in their own words, their different sentiments will not be discerned; the one holding that Christ is a created God, of a like but not of the same substance with his Father; the other, that he is equal with him, of the same nature, substance, and glory: and he that believes the latter, surely it cannot be unlawful to express his belief of it in such words which declare the true sense of his mind. So a Sabellian or Unitarian and a Trinitarian, will neither of them scruple to say in Scripture terms what Christ says of himself and his Father, "I and my Father are one"; and yet the former holds, they are one in person or but one person; whereas the latter affirms, that they are one in nature and essence, but two distinct persons; and surely it must be lawful so to express himself, if this is the real sentiment of his mind. A Socinian and an Antisocinian will join in saying that Christ the "Word is God," and that he is the "only begotten of the Father," and the "only begotten Son of God"; and yet the one maintains that he is only God by office, not by nature, and that he is the only begotten Son of God by office or by adoption; when the other believes that Christ is God by nature, and that he is the Son of the Father by natural and eternal generation, being begotten by him. It is necessary therefore they should make use of their own words to express their sentiments by, or how otherwise should it be known that they differ from one another? And indeed this seems to be the grand reason why it is urged with so much vehemence, by some, that only Scripture words and phrases should be made use of, that their erroneous tenets may not be detected and exposed; for, as a learned man has observed, such as cavil at the formulas (of sound doctrine used by the orthodox) and plead they should be very short, and composed in the bare words of Scripture "eos aliquid monstri alere," these nourish and cherish some monstrous notion, as the experience of all ages testify. And sometimes such persons take detached passages of Scripture from different places, and join them together, though they have no connection and agreement with each other; and such a method Irenaeus observes the ancient heretics took, who made use of passages of Scripture

 

“that their figments might not seem to be without a testimony; but passed over the order and connection of the Scriptures, and loosened the parts of truth as much as in them lay; and who fitly compares such to one who should take the effigy of a king made of jewels and precious stones by a skilful artificer, and loosen and separate them, and of them make the form of a dog or a fox.”

 

6. It does not appear that those men who are so strenuous for the use of Scripture phrases only in articles of religion, have a greater value for the Scriptures than others; nay, not so much; for if we are to form a judgment of them by their sermons and writings, one would think they never read the Scriptures at all, or very little, since they make such an infrequent use of them: you shall scarcely hear a passage of Scripture quoted by them in a sermon, or produced by them in their writings; more frequently Seneca, Cicero, and others; and it looks as if they thought it very impolite, and what might serve to disgrace their more refined writings, to fill their performances with them: and after all, it is easy to observe that these men, as the Arians formerly, and the Socinians more lately, carry on their cause, and endeavour to support it by making use of unscriptural words and phrases; and therefore it is not with a very good grace that such men, or those of the same cast with them, object to the use of words and phrases not syllabically expressed in Scripture; and the rather since the Arians were the first that began to make use of unscriptural phrases, as Athanasius affirms. The Athanasians had as good a right to use the word omoousiov as the Arians omoioousiov, and thereby explain their sense and defend their doctrine concerning the person of Christ, and his equality with God, against the latter, who introduced a phrase subversive of it; and the Calvinists have as good authority to make use of the word "satisfaction" in the doctrine of expiation of sin and atonement for it, as the Socinians and Remonstrants have for the use of the word "acceptilation," whereby they seek to obscure and weaken it. Words and phrases, though not literally expressed in scripture, yet if what is meant by them is to be found there, they may be lawfully made use of; as some respecting the doctrine of the Trinity; of these some are plainly expressed, which are used in treating of that doctrine, as "nature," Ga 4:8 "Godhead," Col 2:9 "Person," the person of the Father, and the person of Christ, Heb 1:3; 2Co 2:10; 4:6 and others clearly signified, as "essence," by the name of God, "I am what I am," Ex 3:14 the "unity" of divine persons in it, Joh 10:30 a "Trinity" of Persons in the unity of Essence, 1Jo 5:7 and others respecting some peculiar doctrines of revelation, concerning the state of men and the grace of Christ; as the "imputation of Adam’s sin" to his posterity, Ro 5:19 and the "imputation of righteousness," i.e. of Christ’s to them that believe, which is nearly syllabically expressed in Ro 4:6 and the "imputation" of sin to Christ, who "was made sin," i.e. by imputation, 2Co 5:21. And the "satisfaction" of Christ for sin, in all those places where it is signified that what Christ has done and suffered in the room and stead of his people is to the content of law and justice, and God is well pleased with it: and these are the principal words and phrases objected to, and which we shall not be prevailed upon to part with easily. And indeed, words and phrases, the use of which have long obtained in the churches of Christ, and the sense of them, is well known, and serve aptly to convey the sense of those that use them; it is unreasonable to require them to part with them, unless others, and those better words and phrases, are substituted in their room; and such as are proposed should not be easily admitted without strict examination; for there is oftentimes a good deal of truth in that saying, "qui fingit nova verba, nova gignit dogmata"; he that coins new words, coins new doctrines; which is notorious in the case of Arius; for not only Alexander, his Bishop charged him with saying, without scripture, and what was never said before, that God was not always a Father, but there was a time when he was not a Father; and that the Word was not always, but was made out of things that were not; and that there was a time when he was not a Son: but Eusebius, a favourer of his, also owns that the inspired writings never used such phrases, to ex ouk ontwn, kai to, hn pote ote ouk hn, that Christ was "from non-entities," from things that are not, i.e. was made out of nothing; and that "there was a time when he was not"; phrases, he says, they had never been used to.



[1] See GILL @PB: Heb 6:1 and @PB: Heb 6:2

[2] Calvin on the passage has these words,

 

“The apostle seems to me to command Timothy that he be tenacious of the doctrine he had learned, not only as to the substance, but as to the figure of the oration, (or form of speech or set of words used) for upotupwsiv, the word used, is a lively expression of things as if presented to the eye; Paul knew how easy is a lapse or deflection from the pure doctrine, and therefore solicitously cautioned Timothy not to decline from the form of teaching he had received.”

 

[3] The Doctrine of the Trinity vindicated, p. 21.

As A Man Thinketh, So Is He

As A Man Thinketh, So Is He
By Elder Dale E. Magers

(Pr 23:6-8) "Eat thou not the bread of him that hath an evil eye; neither desire thou his dainty meat: For as he thinketh in his heart so is he: Eat and drink, saith he to thee; But his heart is not with thee. The morsel which thou hath eaten shalt thou vomit up, and lose thy sweet word." In 1Th 5:22; Paul writes "Abstain from all appearance of evil." Ever since the fall of man, we have not been able to accept the good and leave off the evil. It seems that once we come into possession of what is evil, we become partakers of that evil. Since we have two personalities, a Spiritual and a natural one, we often become curious about what is evil, but when we come into the knowledge of it we are in some way partaking of it. We see that Solomon warns against this, we are not to eat with them that hath an evil eye. (An evil eye shows that this person has his heart set on evil and not what is good.) Often to eat with someone indicates fellowship with that person. Do you recall that when the disciples went fishing with Peter after the crucifixion of Christ, the Lord pursued them, fixing a meal of fish on the shore commanding them, to "Come and Dine" With this meal and the instruction that follows brings them back into his fellowship, especially Peter who denied him three times. It is great to have fellowship and dine with the Lord, but it is evil to have fellowship with the world! No wonder the Lord asked Peter, "Lovest thou me, more than these?"

A companion text to illustrate this truth is found in Mt 5:22-23, "The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness." If we are thinking properly, our whole body will be engaged in Gods work, for as a man thinketh so in his heart is he. The apostle Paul warns the Colossians, "If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, for Christ sitteth on the right hand of God." Where are your effections? Paul says in Col 3:2,  "Set your effections on things above, not on things of the earth, for ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God." If we know that we have been redeemed by the precious blood of Christ from our sins and have been given eternal life we should rejoice to leave off that which is evil and follow good. Our problem is we do not think enough about what Christ has done for us, that he has delivered us from death, hell and the grave. Paul wrote in 1Co 15:33-34, "Be not deceived: evil communications corrupt good manners. Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God, I speak this to your shame."

How much time do we spend seeking the righteousness of God, learning more and more about Christ everyday? Do we spend the majority of our time seeking first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, or is church and spiritual things an after thought? The apostle Paul wrote in 2Co 6:14, "Be not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship has righteousness with unrighteousness? And what communion hath light with darkness?" May we all work more diligently to pursue in our hearts the things of God, for where our heart is shows where our treasure is. As a man thinketh in his heart, so is he. Am I a soldier of the cross? Amen

Ascensions and Decensions of Christ

TWO of each – ASCENSIONS and DESCENSIONS of Jesus Christ, Both of each are visible and Bodily, yet there are multitudes of both Spiritually, as pictured in Jacob and Ladder – Ge 28:11-12.   Now for the first Bodily Descending – Mt 1:18-23; Isa 7:14;  Next consider BOTH – Eph 4:8-10; Ps 68:18; Pr 30:4; Joh 3:13; 6:62.  Now, the future promise is found in Ac 1:9-11; Heb 9:28.  Think of this END-TIME -2nd Coming of Jesus Christ – Mt 25:31-34.

Hulan Bass

ASSURANCE

ASSURANCE
By
Elder Guy Hunt (Deceased)

   Isa 32:17,  And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness, quietness and assurance forever.”

   Jesus has performed the work of righteousness.  By him we are made righteous.  As the heavenly king, who walked among men, he put away our sins and made us righteous in the sight of the heavenly Father.

   Heb 1:8, “But unto the Son, he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever; a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of thy kingdom.”

   He is our peace.  He is the King of peace.  He made our peace with God.  Ro 10:4, “For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.”  We do not have to struggle to keep some law to be righteous.  That comes as a gift from the Lord.

   I am interested in the effect.  There is quietness and assurance forever.  He fought the battle against sin and won.  He was victorious over the grave, and became the first fruits of them that slept.  As the captain of our ship, we have this sweet assurance that we belong to the Lord.  The assurance is not just while we are at our best.  Even as he chastens us, we have the assurance that we are sons.

   Many poor souls have lost their minds trying to be perfect and live without sin, feeling that this was the only way they could live in Glory.  The mother who recently drowned all her children had been taught that, when they died at an early age, they would go to heaven, but if later they failed to live faithful to God, they would go to hell.

   If the message of the gospel was that we had to live faithful to the end, or we were never born again, no one could have any assurance.  To think that we could spend our life rejoicing in the Lord, and then have a wayward thought just before we died, and go to hell is not the sweet assurance taught in the Bible.

   Our assurance is in the fact that Christ never fails. We know we fail so we cannot depend on our works.

   The most miserable people in the world are those who believe their heavenly home depends on how they react to the preaching of the gospel.

   When I served as Probate Judge, I was probating a will one day for a young man who had been killed in an automobile accident.  The lawyer, whose father was a Calvinist, told me he was this much like the Primitive Baptists; it was just his time to go.  I told him that Primitive Baptists had never believed that kind of doctrine.  I explained to him that for that theory to work, you would take down all the red lights, remove the speed limit, cross at railroad crossings without looking for trains, and just floor board it, for you could not go before your time.  He looked at me and said, “That wouldn’t work, would it?”

   To apply the all things in Ro 8:28 to drunks getting drunk and pulling out into the path of a sweet mother with her car full of kids and killing them all, would be accusing God of causing wickedness.  I can still see the fire in the eyes of the late Elder C.M. Mills of the Bear Creek Association, when fighting such heresy.  He would say, “Don’t accuse my God of such wickedness.”

   David had the assurance of God in the most extreme circumstances. “If I ascend into heaven, thou art there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.  If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.”  David’s assurance surely came by him knowing his God was always faithful, even when he was not.

   I rejoice in the fact that this assurance is not just until we stumble, but it is forever. (Jan. 2003)

                                            Elder Guy Hunt
( From “The Best of Elder Guy Hunt”, Primitive
Baptist Library Series, Elder Harold Hunt—Editor)

ASSURANCE OF SALVATION & OUR CHIEF END AND PURPOSE IN EXISTING

by Elder Joe Holder 

When we disconnect the response to God’s love from God’s love and instead of saying "We love Him because He first loved us" say "oh He loves us anyway," we have disconnected scripture that links God’s effectual call with it’s impact in our life and we are not standing on biblical ground. "Oh God doesn’t care whether we serve Him or not." Show me the verse that says that. It’s not in the bible! And that leads me to the counterpoint that I want to emphasize as well -I cannot give anyone assurance of their salvation. I can’t give myself assurance of my salvation apart from the degree to which my life reflects my love to God. I grant that. I believe that. You can’t give yourself assurance of salvation in the pig pen feeding pigs and living rioteously. You can’t! But there’s something more subtle and more powerful about this truth that we need to understand. The biblical focus of the Christian life is not the objective of me gaining assurance of my salvation or of me assuring you of your salvation. If I put all my focus on the assurance of salvation I will work for it- I’ll say "oh, I’ve hit this hurdle, I have a little assurance here, let me work a little harder, I’ll get here and have a little more assurance." You’ll never have enough to be satisfied. You’ll always wonder, "do I have it- am I assured?" And you’ll never get to the point of contentment. It’ll never happen. Oh, there’s one way it might- you’ll redefine all the barriers and the boundaries and accomplishments of discipleship and then by redefining say, "oh, I’ve arrived, I’m assured, I know -but I’m not sure about you folks, I don’t know if you have it or not." It makes us arrogant and judgmental. What is our primary objective as children of God, creatures of God’s making here in this world? To praise and glorify God! The Westminister Confession, the London Confession and the catechisms that go with those and the whole theme of doctrinal, biblical teaching on the doctrines of grace says that our chief end and purpose in existing is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever. What is your objective- gaining more assurance of your salvation or glorifying God? It can’t be both. They’re contradictory. Because one is self-centric, one is ego-centric- "I want more assurance of my salvation." The other is self-denying and says "I want above all other things, my whole purpose in existing is to glorify God and to serve Him and I serve Him by serving others. Let me invest every ounce of my energy and life in serving God and in serving His people." And suddenly you just feel so content and so joyful and so assured of your salvation and you don’t have to worry and fret and wonder and look at the scales every night and see if they tip this way or that way. You’re investing everything about your existence in glorifying God and in the process God makes assurance flow like a flooding river. It is not that what we do to gain assurance of our salvation causes it but rather is the evidence of it.

ATTITUDE OF THE BODY IN PRAYER

ATTITUDE OF THE BODY IN PRAYER
By Elder R.H. Pittman (Deceased)

   There are thirty-nine prayers mentioned in the Old Testament and twelve in the New Testament. In thirty-four of these prayers of the person praying is not stated. In seven the praying was standing, and also it is most probable that Jesus stood while praying at the tomb of Lazarus. Two prayed while lying on the face; two on their knees; one on a sick bed; one in a whale; two on the cross, and one while dying.

   Eliezer standing, prayed for the success of his mission in procuring a wife for Isaac (Ge 24:12). Samson prayed standing between the pillars (Jg 16:28). Joshua, lying on his face, prayed because of the defeat of his army (Jos 7:7-9). Solomon’s prayer at the dedication of the temple was one of the greatest prayers recorded, and was made standing (1Ki 8:23-53). Jonah prayed, and promised to keep his vows while he was in the whale’s belly (Jon 2). Hezekiah, the good king who had his life lengthened in the midst of serious illness, prayed on his bed (2Ki 20:1-6). Ezekiel’s intercession for the people was made lying on his face (Eze 9:8). On his knees, Ezra, feeling a sense of shame for his people who were allied with the heathen, earnestly prayed (Ezr 9:5-15). Prayer of the Levites in their repentance and covenant was made standing (Ne 9:5-38). The Lord’s prayer, or rather the model prayer, Jesus did not instruct in what position to pray, but said, “After this manner therefore pray ye” (Mt 6:9-15). When Jesus gave thanks for things hidden and revealed (Mt 11:25-26) it is not stated whether He was standing or kneeling. And at the grave of Lazarus the position of Jesus in prayer is not stated, but the context seems to favor a standing position (Joh 11:41-42). Jesus, in His prayer in the garden of Gethsemane (Lu 22:41-44) kneeled down. In the Pharisees’ prayer he “stood and prayed” and the publican also prayed “standing afar off” (Lu 18:10-14); Stephen prayed while dying (Ac 7:59-60). Jesus’ prayer on the cross—prayed for His enemies (Lu 23:24). The Malefactor on the right of Jesus on the cross also prayed (Lu 23:42-43).

   Thus we learn from the scripture that there is no special attitude for prayer. Baptists therefore should not condemn and criticize one because of his attitude while praying. It is the spirit of prayer, not the attitude of the one praying that is important. In public meetings some good Baptists stand and pray—other good Baptists kneel and pray. With some, one attitude is a custom—with others another attitude is customary. A good brother once said that when Elder Hassell stood up to pray he felt to condemn him, but that the dear man of God had not spoken but a little before he felt to praise God for such a great and humble gift in prayer. Personally, I was once condemned by a good brother for standing while praying,--he advising me that the Pharisees stood up to pray; but possibly the brother did not know that the publican also stood up while praying. Jesus did not condemn his attitude but commended his prayer. If in the spirit, one can be as humble while standing and praying as if in a kneeling position; and his voice can be better heard and thus reach a larger number of listeners. Because of their feeble condition or other physical disabilities, or because of custom, many brethren stand while praying and should not be condemned for doing so by those whose custom it is to kneel while praying. Let us strive to be more spiritual and less formal. Follow the custom that suits you best, but do not seek to make any custom a law. The attitude in prayer is one of the non-essentials in which liberty should be granted. The important thing is to pray with the spirit and with the understanding (1Co 14:15). And to “pray without ceasing” (1Th 5:17). Jesus taught “that men ought always to pray, and not to faint” (Lu 18:1). But He did not teach, nor did He follow any particular posture in prayer. And He is our perfect model.

        --R. H. Pittman
   Advocate and Messenger
(From “The Messenger of Zion”, Feb. 15, 1937

Avoiding Foolish and Unlearned Questions

Avoiding Foolish and Unlearned Questions:
by Elder Michael Ivey … 2-25-16

"But foolish and unlearned questions avoid, knowing that they do gender strifes.”  2Ti 2:23

       This text states some questions are best avoided. Which is to say they should be left unasked, some issues left out of discussions.  The statement is contained in advice the Apostle Paul gave Timothy in his second letter to the young preacher.  The identities of its author and recipient as Apostle and Pastor respectively, suggests the advice applies to issues that might otherwise be brought into churches, either by formal action or informally by private conversation among church members. The reason given to avoid these type questions and issues is they are known to excite disagreements.  Paul's advice doesn't mention whether support or opposition by one side or the other might be valid.  He simply states foolish and unlearned questions DO gender strifes and therefore should be avoided.  This being so it is important to understand what Paul meant when he labeled some questions foolish and unlearned.

       Paul made a similar statement in his letter to Titus, another of his sons in the ministry. "But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain." Tit 3:9 The fact Paul gave both young preachers similar instructions concerning certain types of questions they should avoid suggests:

   1. They likely would be confronted with foolish and unlearned questions
   2. Far from any benefit to the cause of Christ, such questions disrupt peace and spiritual unity among the saints by producing strifes.
   3. Paul's instruction generally applies to all preachers from the fact it is mentioned in pastoral letters to both of the young preachers Paul is known to have mentored.
   4. Church members should avoid bringing preachers questions and issues that are foolish and unlearned because preachers are instructed to avoid them inasmuch as they gender strifes.

       We begin by considering definitions and connotative implications of several words and phrases Paul used in the text in order to better understand his intended meaning. They include:

Questions: The meaning of this word in both Greek and English applies to more than queries, interrogatory statements designed to get specific information in response.  Thayer's Greek/English Lexicon of the New Testament indicates Paul's use of this word in 2Ti 2:23 and in Tit 3:9 is: "A subject of questioning or debate, matter of controversy."  Based on this definition we understand Paul's use of question includes discussions of subjects for which there are differences of opinion in addition to interrogatory queries that likewise mar peace and disrupt church unity.

Strife: Thayer's meanings for this word include: Combat, fights, of persons at variance.  According to The Oxford Universal Dictionary on Historical Principles at the time the KJV Bible was translated definitions for strife included: Intense quarrel, mutual hostility, to carry on a conflict.  From this we understand foolish and unlearned questions produce conflicts that are not quickly nor easily overcome.  This is particularly so when they are carried on (pridefully doted upon). (See 1Ti 6:3-4)  Those who repeatedly raise foolish and unlearned questions carry on conflict whether the motive is promotion, opposition or even neutrality toward the offending question.
Gender: Thayer's defines this word as: "To engender, cause to arise, excite, be delivered of."  Paul's choice of gender indicates these type questions naturally spawn controversy.  An inherent, touchstone relationship exists between these type questions and strifes: Foolish and unlearned questions naturally give rise to disagreement and conflict between God's children.  This characteristic indicates questions that are known to disrupt peace and spiritual unity, or can be reasonably predicted to do so are foolish and unlearned and should be avoided.

       There are subjects and issues having to do with faith and religion upon which people do reasonably differ in their opinions of which they can "agreeably disagree."  Paul's warning does not apply to these.  It applies only to those which gender strifes, controversial issues that inevitably produce ongoing conflict.  By using the phrase "they do gender strifes" the Apostle indicates foolish and unlearned questions perform the action of exciting strifes; they do gender strifes.  According to context they produce battles, mutual hostilities that disrupt peace and spiritual unity.

Foolish: Webster's American Dictionary of the English Language, 1828 uses 2Ti 2:23 as an example of the meaning and use of foolish.  It defines foolish as:  “1. Void of understanding or sound judgment; applied to general character, weak in intellect.  2. Unwise, imprudent, acting without judgment or discretion in particular things. 3. Proceeding from folly, or marked with folly; silly; vain; trifling."  Thayer defines foolish as:"Imprudent; without forethought or wisdom, empty, useless."

       Thayers and Strong's Greek/English Dictionary indicate the Greek word for foolish, μωρός moros, is derived from μυστήριον musterion from which we have the English word mystery.  This connection suggests foolish questions can sometimes include hidden motives or intentions.  Hiding true intentions or motives is a form of duplicity, which sometimes is referred to as the fallacy of unstated or suppressed major premise.  Duplicity also indicates poor or faulty judgment because it is dishonest: Purposely hiding or disguising motives in order to conceal unstated goals is a form of bearing false witness, lying.

       From these definitions we understand foolish questions are not well reasoned.  Sometimes this is due to a false premise that is simply erroneous.  No deceit is intended.  For instance, in Mr 9 the Apostles engaged in a foolish query based on a false premise that one day one of them would be the greatest in the kingdom.  Jesus rebuked their pride and boasting and rejected the underlying premise that one of them would necessarily be the greatest.  He did so by pointing out God uses virtues such as meekness and humility to define greatness in His kingdom, which were absent in the Apostles' dispute.

Unlearned: Paul's use of "unlearned" suggests questions can sometimes be a result of ignorance. ill-manners, or lack of self-restraint. Thayer provides this meaning: "Without instruction and discipline, uneducated, ignorant, rude, stupid questions.”  It should be noted the meaning of stupid is not limited to lack of mental acuity or intelligence. Its meaning includes "dullness, lacking in common sense, carelessness, and lack of good judgment."  These significations suggest unlearned questions may be ignorantly formed and proposed and/or hastily proposed.  They are uneducated when submitted without careful study and consideration of the subject they address. They are rash when submitted without giving proper thought to the controversy and potential negative consequences they might spawn.  They are products of dull thinking by those who by simple ignorance or naivety lack the ability to think through potential negative consequences of the issues they promote.  Dullness also can apply to lack of empathy, uncaring whether a question might cause strifes.  Unlearned questions are rude when their sponsors ignore or rationalize as acceptable their potential to cause harm.

       Scriptural context indicates there are two categories of foolish and unlearned questions.  They are: 1. Divisive issues that directly impact sound faith and practice; and, 2. Issues that are not essential to maintaining sound faith and practice but nevertheless are prone to cause schism.  Paul provided examples of both in his letters to Timothy and Titus.

       His example of a divisive issue that questioned essential salvation doctrine is the false assertion by Hymeneaus and Philetus that the resurrection had already occurred.  Characterizing their arguments as "profane and vain babblings" infers the content and authority of their teaching did not come from God.  The issue is seen to be divisive in the statement; "Who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past; and overthrow the faith of some." (See 2Ti 2:16-18)  From this example we understand questions designed to undermine settled salvation doctrines are foolish and unlearned.

       The letter to Titus mentions foolish questions that are not essential to maintaining sound faith and practice.  "But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain." (Tit 3:9)  By including contentions as an example we understand questions known to produce debate and strife are foolish and should be avoided.

Avoid: Paul's instruction we should avoid foolish and unlearned questions is clear.  It means do not become occupied with addressing them.  According to Thayer avoidance is polite withdrawal or diversion: "To avert by entreaty or seek to avert, to deprecate, to beg pardon, crave indulgence."  This definition suggests some form of deflection is the best way to avoid foolish and unlearned questions.  Furthermore, deflective tactics are to be done with gentleness and kindness in an effort to help the sponsors of foolish and unlearned questions recover themselves from Satan's divisive snare. (See 2Ti 2:24-26)

       The earliest example in scripture of a foolish and unlearned question is the Serpent's question to Eve. "Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?" Ge 3:1  On its face this question appears to indicate concern for Eve's well being.  But it was a ploy, a product of duplicity crafted by Satan to hide his true motive and intention; which was to oppose God and harm man by coaxing Adam and Eve to disobey God.  It's duplicity alone qualifies the question as foolish. But it also has other features of foolish and unlearned questions.  For instance, it promoted an unwise course of action that produced disaster for man and did nothing to improve Satan's lot.  The question was unlearned because it was rude and stupid. It was stupid in that it indicates Satan's utter dullness by unfeeling disregard for the well being of others.  It was rude in that it insulted God by challenging an issue He had already settled and questioning His honesty.  It was rash in that far from giving an advantage to Satan its consequence provided God another way to manifest His wisdom and authority of justice and mercy to forgive sins.  Finally, the question is proven to be foolish and unlearned by the fact it gendered strifes: Adam's and Eve's reaction to Satan's question laid the foundation for all the conflict mankind has and will endure.

       Jesus was asked many foolish and unlearned questions. One example is recorded in Lu 20. "Is it lawful for us to give tribute unto Caesar, or no? But he perceived their craftiness, and said unto them, Why tempt ye me? Shew me a penny. Whose image and superscription hath it? They answered and said, Caesar's. And he said unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which be Caesar's, and unto God the things which be God's." Lu 20:22-25 This question was a pretense.  The true motive of the chief priests and scribes was not to settle an issue pertaining to Mosaic Law.  It was to entangle the Savior in order to deliver him to Roman authorities for punishment and thereby end His teaching and influence. (See Lu 20:17)  This hidden motive shows the question was duplicitous and thereby foolish. The question was born of strife in that those who asked it opposed Jesus and sought to cause him harm.  Also, the motive behind the question was to further produce strife by raising a controversy between the Savior and the Roman government.  The inability of the chief priests and scribes to take issue with Jesus' response proves the question was unlearned. It was ignorantly crafted and rashly submitted.  It was rude, a characteristic of unlearned questions, because it was intended to harm Jesus.

       Another example of a foolish and unlearned question is the hypothetical question Jewish leaders asked Jesus concerning the woman whose husband died; and was said to have in sequence married each of his brothers who also died.  Their question was, "In the resurrection therefore, when they shall rise, whose wife shall she be of them? for the seven had her to wife." Mr 12:23  Jesus' response reveals the question was foolish and unlearned.  "And Jesus answering said unto them, Do ye not therefore err, because ye know not the scriptures, neither the power of God?" Mr 12:24  The question was foolish because it was "void of understanding" in that Sadducees denied the resurrection.  This fact also suggests their motive for asking the question was duplicitous.  Since they rejected the existence of spirits, angels and resurrection of the the dead they were not seeking to resolve a seeming inconsistency between the teachings of Moses Law and the doctrine of the resurrection.  It is more likely their intent was to undermine Jesus influence by asking a question they believed he could not answer without stirring controversy among his disciples.  It was also rash since the Sadducees could have found an answer to their question by studying scripture and submitting to its truth and authority.  It was unlearned in that it was rashly submitted and showed lack of honest, disciplined study.

       The Apostle Paul was also confronted by foolish and unlearned questions.  An example of this is the question raised by Hymenaeus and Philetus concerning the resurrection. Paul wrote:  "And their word will eat as doth a canker: of whom is Hymenaeus and Philetus; Who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already; and overthrow the faith of some." 2Ti 2:17  The two claimed to know the resurrection had already occurred.  Their questioning was foolish in that it challenged settled doctrine.  It also sought to undermine the Apostles' teachings which were consistent with the plain language of the Savior, who indicated the resurrection will be an unmistakable event; and, that its timing cannot be accurately predicted. (See Mt 24; 1Co 15; 1Th 5, and 2Pe 3)  Paul plainly indicates their questioning produced harm and caused strife in that it overthrew the faith of some believers and if tolerated would have had a perverting effect on church doctrine.

       Paul's reaction to the false teaching does not indicate he engaged these blasphemers in debate.  Neither does it suggest he went church to church drawing attention to them and the controversy.  Doing so would have exposed a broader audience to the blasphemers false teaching. It is more likely he followed his own advice to Timothy.  "But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness." 2Ti 2:16  The phrase, "for they will increase unto more ungodliness." implies going about engaging foolish and unlearned questions, even in opposition can serve to spread whatever causes they address by bringing them into broader attention.

       How to avoid foolish and unlearned questions has always posed a significant challenge.  This is particularly so at present because we live in a culture which seems to have a penchant for everything foolish and unlearned.  Today, we struggle against the impact of a change in what is considered critical thinking.  Sometime ago a shift occurred in how we process information to form opinions and arrive at conclusions.  Long used methods of critical thinking based on proven rules of logic, fact and situation (context) gradually began to be replaced with a model for decision making that is based primarily on emotional stimulation, feelings.  This model asserts ideas are correct if they promote self-esteem and/or make one's self and others feel good: Whatever makes me feel good must be right.  Added to this is a sense of entitlement that is fostered by the existential principle of humanist hedonism; which has greatly contributed to the erosion of cultural restraints.  Today any topic from the frivolously absurd to the obscenely vulgar is open for public discourse.

       This shift in how people process information creates a fertile environment for producing foolish and unlearned "feel good" questions.  It also convinces people they are entitled to have their opinions be given serious hearing if some presently-in-vogue "feel good" threshold is met.  On top of this, social media has provided the means to immediately announce to the world whatever comes to mind; and get the immediate gratification of receiving attention.  So today, foolish and unlearned questions abound and are repeatedly and endlessly discussed on forums, blogs, tweets, and the list goes on.

       Sadly, Christians in both the pew and the pulpit are not immune from the phenomenon of "feel good" thinking accompanied by a sense of entitlement that we have a right to be heard on any question.  The result is there is no shortage of foolish and unlearned questions that originate in both the pew and the pulpit.  Furthermore, preachers who are unaware of how to identify and deal with foolish and unlearned questions fail to avoid them.  By support, or else in opposition, and even by neutrality they ignorantly go about spreading the questions and the strifes they gender.

       How then can we avoid foolish and unlearned questions?  It would be great if we could handle them like Jesus.  He did not avoid foolish and unlearned questions because He is God.  He silenced them with responses so obviously true and powerful that His challengers were forced to silence.  With perfect knowledge of all issues and motives and all-powerful intellect Jesus answered foolish and unlearned questions so completely no comeback could withstand scrutiny.  His answers left detractors without followup questions, assertions or excuses to fall back on.  Scriptural examples of Jesus' answers to foolish and unlearned question forcing his critics to silence include Mr 12:23-34; Joh 8:1-10; Mt 22:24-34,46; Mr 11:28-33. It must be stressed:  Although Jesus answered foolish and unlearned questions, His answers silenced them.  Jesus avoided foolish and unlearned questions with answers that put a stop to people asking Him foolish and unlearned questions.

       The Apostle Paul sometimes responded to foolish and unlearned questions.  However, his was a special circumstance. His answers were by Divine revelation. Furthermore, as an Apostle, Paul was obliged to provide explanations of the doctrines of salvation and church polity to Christ's disciples.  This included what is true doctrine, examples of challenges to true doctrine and how disciples are to respond to challenges to true doctrine.  Nevertheless, the narrative of Paul's work together with his teachings in the epistles indicate he ultimately did avoid foolish and unlearned questions.  For instance, he avoided the foolish and unlearned questions of Hymeneaus and Alexander, (and helped the churches to likewise avoid them) by turning the two over to Satan "that they may learn not to blaspheme." (1Ti 1:20)

       The methods used by Jesus and Paul to handle foolish and unlearned questions had at least one thing in common.  They both minimized strife by curtailing discussion in some way. Jesus' responses silenced his critics and so lessened their ability to stir up strife against him.  Paul addressed the errors and false teachings implied in foolish and unlearned questions and then terminated further discourse with foolish inquisitors.  This tactic served as a silent indicator of his opposition to false teachings promoted by the likes of Alexander, Hymeneaus, Philetus and others.  The tactics of Jesus and Paul indicate it is wrong to promote foolish and unlearned questions because they gender strifes.  For the same reason it is also wrong to directly engage or otherwise entertain them.

       Scripture teaches an effective way to avoid foolish and unlearned questions is to employ good manners by avoiding corrupt communications.  Paul explicitly made this point to the Corinthians with regard to false teachings concerning the resurrection. (See 1Co 15:33)  One way to avoid corrupt communications is to withdraw ourselves from the presence of those who insist on promoting foolish and unlearned questions.  The extreme circumstance of someone insisting on sowing discord by doting (see 1Ti 6:4) on foolish and unlearned with other church members can require formal church action.  However, in most cases withdrawing requires nothing more than some form of personal, polite censure.

       Responding with silence is perhaps the most effective way to politely record objection while avoiding strife.  This tactic is consistent with the moral virtue of good manners, which, according to Paul's instruction to the Ephesians prohibits even the mention of some things.  He notes we are to "have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them."  He then suggests even speaking of unfruitful works of darkness leads to wrong reactions.  "For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done of them in secret. But all things that are reproved are made manifest by the light: for whatsoever doth make manifest is light."  Paul concludes by admonishing the Ephesian church members to "See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is." (Eph 5:12-17)  From Paul's instruction we understand it is an unwise use of time to entertain discussions of questions designed to rationalize values and behaviors that scripture plainly indicates are immoral.  To do so opposes God by challenging His moral authority.

       From the examples of Jesus and Paul we understand avoiding foolish and unlearned questions does not mean we ignore them altogether.  Rather, they should be dealt with using meek and gentle tactics that deflect the issue and discourage additional discussion.  Above all, we are to do so in ways that avoid quarreling and mutual hostility.  Paul did this by reaffirming true doctrine among those he served.  He then avoided those who insisted on continuing to promote false teachings until they ceased blaspheming.  This is implied in his admonition concerning the unholy, empty teachings of Hymeneaus and Philetus.  "But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness." (2Ti 2:16)  Likewise, he told the Roman church to "mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them. (Ro 16:17)

       An effective method of deflecting foolish and unlearned questions is to refer their sponsors to scripture for further study.  Jesus pointed out one of the reasons the Sadducees asked him foolish questions concerning the resurrection was because they were ignorant of the teachings of scripture; and, neither had they given reasonable thought to the scope of God's power.  "Jesus answered and said unto them, Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God." (Mt 22:29)

       Paul instructed Timothy that diligent study of God's word would thoroughly prepare him for the challenges of every good work, including the good work of shunning the profane and vain babblings of foolish and unlearned questions.  "Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. But shun profane and vain babblings: for they will increase unto more ungodliness." (2Ti 2:15-16)

       He also admonished Timothy to flee from the impulsive immaturity of youthful lust which encourages engaging in foolish and unlearned questions.  "Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart. But foolish and unlearned questions avoid, knowing that they do gender strifes." (2Ti 2:22-23)  This instruction teaches we should avoid indulging lustful feelings that can draw us into discussions of foolish and unlearned questions.  We can do so by surrounding ourselves with those who "call on the Lord out of a pure heart," those who manifest righteousness, faith, charity, and peace in their service to God.

       Paul concludes this portion of instruction by teaching preachers they must not promote strife.  "And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will." (2Ti 2:24-26)  The context of this statement suggests preachers who entertain foolish and unlearned questions engage in strife.  It indicates those who do so are not meek and gentle and lack suitable teaching ability and patience.  He encourages preachers to spend their time studying God's word; which in contrast to entertaining foolish and unlearned questions will thoroughly furnish them for every good work.  Their assigned good work includes calling God's struggling, self-defeated children to repent and acknowledge the truth of His mercy and love; and to cultivate friendships and fellowship among those who call on God out of a pure heart.

       Paul's instruction that we avoid foolish and unlearned questions does not mean challenges to settled Bible doctrines and practices must go unanswered to avoid strifes.  Jude wrote these words by the same authority of Divine inspiration as Paul: "Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints."  Both imperatives are equally valid.  We are obligated to obey both. Doing so requires Spiritually guided efforts aimed at silencing the spread of foolish and unlearned questions while diligently upholding true Bible teachings.

       While he was with us on earth Jesus taught loving God and one another is true obedience and the mark of genuine discipleship. (See Mt 22:37-40; Joh 15:8-12)  Paul teaches us doing this involves "Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace " with one another. (Eph 4:3)  In contrast to the teachings of Jesus and Paul, we are not loving God and one another and neither do we maintain Spirit lead unity in a bond of peace when we entertain foolish and unlearned questions.  This is so whether we entertain them by sponsorship or else make it our job to go about disputing them; because foolish and unlearned questions "do gender strifes.”

Elder Michael Ivey

AWAKENING

AWAKENING
By Doris W. Smith

   Each spring as I look at nature’s miraculous transformation, I wonder, “Could this be compared to the difference between earth and heaven?” What a remarkable contrast there is in the seasons in our part of the country! It seems that almost overnight everything puts on new life—the life evidently being there all along as if asleep and now bursting forth in glorious restoration.

   When the springtime comes forth in brilliant colors (buds and flowers blooming with all shades of the rainbow) after the dull, drab, grays of the winter; it makes you feel as if you have just been awakened from a long night’s sleep. It seems like the difference in midnight and noonday or—if I may compare---black and white color T.V. Now the sun seems to shine right through you, gently warming your cold body with rejuvenating strength and making you forget the past winter season. Even the birds’ singing sounds so new and every leaf and blossom seems to bring forth promises of the resurrection.
   When we are carried to that place called Heaven, I believe it will be an even greater contrast where we will awake to a magnificent springtime. Our bodies (like the flowers) will have put on new life, completely changed and warmed by the Son of God. I believe we will never, for a moment, remember the cold, gray, stormy and afflicted lives of our winter times here on this earth.

   Song 2:11-13: “For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone;
   The flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land;
   The fig tree putteth forth her green figs, and the vines with the tender grape give a good smell. Arise, my love, my fair one, and come away.”
    Doris W. Smith

Backsliding

Backsliding

Ga 5:7,  “Ye did run well; who did hinder you that ye should not obey the truth?”

     Paul compares the life of faith to a race in which they had begun strong and committed, pumped up to finish with victory.  But who hath hindered you; did you listen to the enemy spouting their propaganda?  Did they trip you up with their lies?  Remember that enthusiasm you had when you first knew Jesus.

Elder Danny Ferrell

Bad Habits

"Bad habits are the thistles of the heart, and every indulgence of them is a seed from which will spring a new crop of weeds.--Zion's Advocate, Dec. 1, 1870 (Reprinted in vol. 1, no. 7, For the Poor by Cayce Publishing Co., Thornton, Ark., July, 1941)

BAPTISM

BAPTISM
By
Elder C.M. Mills (Deceased)

   If we understand the purpose of baptism, then we can understand that immersion must be the proper mode. For the mode must be in harmony with the purpose from which it was established. The old law covenant way and manner of worship and service had come to an end, and a new day and age was dawning. Water baptism was not established until Jesus Christ brought in the spiritual worship and service of God of the new covenant. The Greek word Baptizo, means, to immerse, bury, dip, or plunge into water or liquid. The Greeks surely know the meaning of their own language better than anyone else. They have never changed the mode of baptism. They continue to immerse until this day. All sects continued to immerse until the Council of Rennava in 1311. The Roman Catholic Church changed the mode to either sprinkling, pouring, or continue to immerse or bury in water. Until this time, there was no question or dispute, as to the original mode of baptism, because all sects immersed or buried in water.

   “There was a man sent from God, whose name was John.” Joh 1:6. In the beginning of the new spiritual way and manner of worshipping God, John was sent to baptize, or make ready a people prepared of the Lord. By being immersed or buried to the old law service, they were ready to enter into this new spiritual worship and service. “In those days came John, the Baptist, (the Baptizer) preaching in the wilderness of Judea and saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.” Mt 3:1-2. Repent means to turn away, forsake and leave, cease from the old way. The old law service was to stop, because the new spiritual worship and service was at hand. Therefore it was necessary to be baptized or buried to the old covenant service of that day and age, and be raised up to take part in this new spiritual worship and service of the new covenant day and age. The change was at hand. “But the hour cometh and NOW IS, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in Spirit and in Truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in Spirit and in Truth.” Joh 4:23-24. Under the old law covenant, God gave to the Jews a natural kingdom and a way and manner of worship and service to God. As that day and age was at an end, a spiritual kingdom was being established by the Lord Jesus Christ called the Kingdom of Heaven. Therefore, it was necessary to change the rule of worship and service because the priesthood was being changed. “For the priesthood being changed, there is of necessity a change also of the law.” Heb 7:12. This was a new way of worship and service.

   Jesus Christ, himself, did not preach publicly until after he was baptized. God, the Father, and God, the Holy Spirit, were present when Jesus, the Son of God, was baptized. Jesus Christ is God’s high priest of the new covenant church of the New Testament. “And Jesus himself began to be about thirty years of age.” Lu 3:23. The law of Moses required the High Priest to be thirty years old before being consecrated into this office. Jesus Christ met and fulfilled every demand of the law of Moses. ”And it came to pass in those days, that Jesus came from Nazareth of Galilee, and was baptized of John in Jordan. And straightway coming up out of the water, he saw the heavens opened, and the Spirit like a dove descending upon him: and there came a voice from heaven saying. Thou art my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” Mr 1:9-11. Jesus Christ was not baptized in order to make him the Son of God.

   Jesus was being separated from the Old Law Covenant service, and being the Consecrated Head over all things to the Church, he was setting an example for all of his children to follow. The Apostle Matthew gave this record. “Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him. But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me? And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfill all righteousness. Then he suffered him. And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him, and lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” Mt 3:13-17. How could Jesus come up straightway or immediately out of the water, if he was not in the water? There should not be any question as to the mode if we will take notice of the way he was baptized and for what purpose? About twenty five years later, some one at the church at Corinth preached that the bodies of the saints would not be resurrected, and overthrew the faith of some. The Apostle Paul was showing them their error and inconsistency. “Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? Why are they then baptized for the dead?” 1Co 15:29. Those at Corinth were denying what they affirmed: either quit baptizing or burying people in the watery grave and raising them up, or believe in the resurrection of the bodies of the saints. If men do not believe in the resurrection of the dead, why say so by baptizing, immersing, or burying those that join their church?

   In order for the children of God to manifest that they are dead, or separated from the old Law Service, they must be baptized by immersion, and be raised up to walk in the new spiritual worship and service to God. Some perhaps cannot tell the difference between the baptism of the Holy Spirit and water baptism: these are entirely different baptisms. Heb 6:2 mentions baptism in the plural. The baptism of the Holy Spirit, or, Holy Ghost, is alone the work of the Holy Spirit. Men cannot help in this work. The work of the Holy Spirit in the heart makes the children of men new creatures in Christ. The work of the Holy Spirit is first, which brings about repentance: then water baptism should follow. “Know ye not, (don’t you know) that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus Christ were baptized into his death. Therefore (because) we are buried with him by baptism into death, that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted (buried in water) together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection.” (Ro 6:3-5. Jesus Christ preached the gospel or good news of this spiritual kingdom. Mr 1:5: “And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel.” God, the Father, has raised up Jesus Christ, his Son, from the grave, and he is sitting on the throne of David, reigning over all Spiritual Israel. He is head of the New Testament Church of Jesus Christ. The sacred scriptures contain no record of God giving to any man or set of men the authority to change the mode of baptism or any of the ordinances in the church. 

C. M. Mills
(From “Identity Of The True Baptist Church”
By Elder Wiley W. Sammons)

BAPTISM - A CONFESSION OF FAITH

by Elder Michael Gowens

 

"When they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women." Ac 8:12

 

Christian baptism is an act of worship, taking the form of a ceremonial washing, in which a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ identifies himself, by faith, with the Savior’s atoning death, and consecrates himself to a lifetime of faith and obedience to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. Like the Lord’s Supper, baptism is an ordinance, i.e. sacred tradition, given to the church by the Lord Jesus, both by his own example {Mt 3:13-17} and his own explicit command. {Mt 28:19} The ordinance of baptism is a ceremony of initiation, marking the entrance into discipleship and identifying one as a fellow believer with his brothers and sisters in the local church. The ordinance of communion is a ceremony of remembrance, commemorating the Savior’s crucifixion and resurrection by sharing the bread and wine with fellow believers.

 

At least four parallels can be made between these two ordinances that Christ gave to the church. (1) Both ordinances are acted sermons, proclaiming the gospel of the grace of God in Jesus Christ visibly and dramatically. "As the preaching of the word makes the gospel audible, so the ordinances make it visible." They are, consequently, visual aids, portraying the gospel in picture form. (2) Both are outward expressions of an inward reality. Peter classified baptism in the same category with Noah’s ark as "figures" of the means of salvation. {1Pe 3:20-22} Baptism is, then, a symbolic act, by which an individual expresses his conviction that God has already performed the substantial work of grace in the soul that Paul calls "the washing of regeneration." {Tit 3:5} The salvation in gospel baptism is a "now" salvation ("... baptism doth also now save us..."), that is, a present deliverance in which the believer receives a sense of pardon and peace from a guilty conscience, not the removal of "the filth of the flesh i.e. indwelling sin." {1Pe 3:21} The Lord’s Supper, likewise, is figurative of the actual means of salvation. When Jesus took the elements and said "This is my body...this is my blood," he meant that the bread and the wine represented, not constituted, his broken body and his shed blood. Neither baptism nor communion are themselves the means by which one is saved; rather, they point to and picture the objective work of salvation performed by Christ and applied by the Holy Spirit. (3) Both are signs of the believers union with Christ. By participating in the ordinances, the believer is reminded of his personal interest in Christ’s atoning work as a participant, not a spectator. The ordinances are expressions of individual assurance testifying with Paul, "I am crucified with Christ...who loved me and gave himself for me." {Ga 2:20; Col 2:12} When an individual personally and physically is immersed, he is saying, by that act, "I believe that Jesus Christ was crucified, buried, and resurrected for me; I trust only in his merit, for time and eternity." Further, when one personally and physically takes the bread and the wine into his body, he is saying, "I believe that his body was broken and his blood was shed for me; he is my only hope for heaven and my only source of strength and nourishment now." (4) Both ordinances are "church" ordinances, in terms of the fact that the authority to administer the ordinances has been given to the church. {Mt 28:19} The Biblical observance of these two ceremonies, "as the apostles delivered them," {1Co 11:2} are marks by which a genuine church is identified and defined. {2Th 2:15}

 

Believer’s Baptism

 

A convincing case can be made from the New Testament regarding the fact that immersion is the Scriptural mode or method of baptism. Philip and the Eunuch "went down both into the water...and he baptized him," then they came "up out of the water." {Ac 8:38-39} Certainly, complete immersion most accurately portrays Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection. Even more convincing is the case that can be made for the fact that believers, as opposed to infants and unbelievers, are the only appropriate subjects for the ordinance. To the eunuch’s question "What doth hinder me to be baptized?" Philip responded, "If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest." {Ac 8:36-37} On the day of Pentecost, it was those who "gladly received the word" that were baptized. {Ac 2:41} It was after Paul and Silas spoke the word of the Lord to the Philippian jailor and his family that they were all baptized. {Ac 16:32-34} To everyone who believes the gospel of Jesus Christ, baptism is commanded, {Ac 10:48} for faith without works is dead. Baptism is the act of faith, by which a believer makes a break with his past lifestyle, turns from his idols, and sets out to follow the Lord Jesus Christ for the rest of his life. It is a dramatization of repentance at a radical level, a turning point in life marked by a distinct and voluntary decision to die to self and to live completely and only for the Lord. It is the believer’s testimony, first to the local fellowship, and then to the watching world, of personal faith in Christ Jesus. It is a courageous act in which one risks the embarrassment and vulnerability of scorn and ridicule as the first step of a Christian discipleship that will be marked by ongoing persecution. It is a confession that the believer is not ashamed of the gospel or embarrassed by the Savior, but willing to suffer humiliation for the One who laid down his life for him. Like the entire Christian life, this first step is inconvenient and physically unpleasant, but a true believer is willing, yea, even glad to suffer hardship for the name of the Lord Jesus Christ. Yes, baptism is for believers.

 

A Confession of Faith

 

Baptism, however, is not only a profession of the fact that one believes in Jesus, it is also a confession of what one believes about Jesus. In Ac 8:12, Luke specifically refers, not to the mere fact of their faith, but to the content of their faith, i.e. not "that" they believed but to "what" they believed: "But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women."

 

Both of the ordinances are, in fact, expressions of the content of faith. They both say something not only of the person, but also of the work of Jesus Christ. There is no New Testament precedent for separating the person from the work of Christ. Paul said "we preach Christ crucified," {1Co 1:23} a Christological formula that expresses an inseparable union between the person and the work of Jesus. The argument that baptism is merely an existential experience with the person of Christ, but not a theological confession of the work of that same Christ, is an attempt to put asunder what God has joined together. That Paul understood baptism to be a confession of one’s belief about the cross is clear from his argument in 1Co 15:29: "Else what shall they do who are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? Why are they then baptized for the dead?"

 

An idea had taken root in the church at Corinth that there would be no bodily resurrection of the dead in the last day. This particular controversy was a theological departure of no small importance. Paul saw this aberrant teaching as a threat to the essentials of the faith. He proceeds in 1Co 15, therefore, to dismantle the false teaching by a logical argument, the force of which is simply irresistible. "If there is no resurrection," he argues first, "then Christ is not raised, for Christ’s resurrection guarantees ours." If you deny the resurrection of the dead, in other words, you must deny the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Secondly, he argues, if you deny the resurrection of Jesus Christ, then the entire Christian faith is meaningless and worthless. All is vain if Christ is not alive. He then proceeds to describe the vanity and futility of a Christless Christianity. Preaching is vain, he says, for we have no gospel. Your faith is vain, for Christ cannot help you if he is in the grave. Furthermore, hope and assurance of salvation is vain, for, if Christ is not raised, you are yet in your sins. Then, Paul says, "By the way, if Christ is not alive from the dead, why are you still practicing the ordinance of baptism, for baptism pictures not only death and burial, but also resurrection? Baptism is meaningless if you deny the doctrine of the resurrection."

 

Paul understood the theological implications of the act of baptism. The inconsistency between their practice of the ordinance of baptism and their insistence that there was no resurrection was glaring. By denying the doctrine of the resurrection, they had robbed the act of baptism of its essential meaning. Baptism is primarily, then, a confession of faith, not an existential experience.

 

Baptism in Christian History

 

Historically, every tradition, whether Baptist, Protestant, or Roman Catholic, considered the ordinances as mirrors of theology; hence, the practice of referring to one’s particular tradition as a "communion," i.e., the Methodist communion, the Episcopal communion, the Presbyterian communion, etc. The tendency to classify the ordinances in "experiential" (as opposed to "theological") terms is a relatively new phenomena that gained prominence in twentieth century ecumenism through the influence of the World Council of Churches and the rapid growth of the charismatic movement.

 

It was this understanding of the theological, not only the experiential, nature of Christian baptism that was the motivation behind the Donatist controversy in the early church (A.D. 200-300). Believing that baptism was first, an ordinance of the church, and secondly, a statement of faith, the Donatists refused to accept the authority of Roman Catholic baptisms. Because they required Scriptural baptism of proselytes and of converts who had received pedo-baptism, Baptists were derisively termed "Anabaptists," meaning "re-baptizers." Who were these "Anabaptists"?

 

In the second century, the church moved from the simplicity of a living organism to the complexity of a sacramental and authoritarian institution. A campaign known as "the Free Church movement," opposing the institutionalized church arose in which certain groups left to pursue a pure church based on the Bible. In his History of the Christian Church, Philip Schaff says concerning one of these groups known as the Donatists, "The Donatist controversy was a conflict between separatism and catholicism...between the idea of the church as an exclusive community of regenerated saints and the idea of the church as the general Christendom of state and people." The Donatists, together with the Novatians (ca. A.D. 250), Paulicans (ca. 625), Albigenses (1140), Waldenses (1180), and others who opposed the institutionalized church were branded as heretics and "Anabaptists." In the book Rediscovering Pastoral Ministry, James Stitzinger writes, "As a general rule, the Anabaptists rejected the idea of an invisible church, viewing the church as a voluntary association of regenerated saints. They sought to restore the idea of a primitive, New Testament church free from magisterial entanglements. This allowed the practice of church discipline, but meant that the church did not have the right to force its views on anyone or persecute those who opposed it."

 

Defining a ‘Church’

 

Behind the question of the validity of someone’s baptism is the question "How should we define ‘the church’?"Is the church merely some vague, nebulous, mystical group that includes everyone who professes to believe in Jesus? In the New Testament, the idea of ‘the church’ is concrete and definite, not abstract and general. When Jesus said, "If he neglect to hear them, tell it to the church," {Mt 18:17} he indicates that ‘the church’ is a local group that has definition and structure, else the command would be unintelligible.

 

In general terms, a true church is defined by its commitment to the gospel of Jesus Christ in all three of its functions: (1) The preaching of the word; (2) The observance of the ordinances; (3) The administration of discipline. Each of these three functions converge, like the spokes of a wheel to the hub, on the same gospel. Each is an expression of that gospel. The preached word makes the gospel audible. It is the gospel verbally and rationally proclaimed. The ordinances make the gospel visible. In them, the gospel is visually displayed and illustrated. The practice of church discipline in which each is accountable to and responsible for his brother makes the gospel practical. It is the gospel practically applied and lived out. What a group believes regarding the gospel, then, determines how they preach, how they observe the ordinances, and how they live interactively with others. These three functions, furthermore, are expressions of their understanding of the gospel message.

 

Baptist’s historical insistence on authentic Scriptural baptism, consequently, arises from these three convictions: (1) A conviction for ‘believer’s’ baptism. By that phrase they mean "people who give evidence of regeneration, and who really believe in Jesus Christ by submitting to what the Scriptures have to say about both his Person and his Work.." (2) A conviction that baptism is a confession of faith, a statement expressing not only that one believes in Jesus but also what one believes about Jesus Christ; (3) A conviction that baptism is a church ordinance, an official ceremony that the church alone has the right to administer. This initial ordinance determines communion, the perpetual ordinance.

 

Admittedly, there is scarcely any subject that has been more historically controversial. As in every controversy, the challenge to be people of conviction while guarding against the ugly arrogance of an exclusive, sectarian spirit demands a posture of humility before God.

Baptism - Which Mode?

Baptism - Which Mode?


 

 

Most Christian religions have one of three modes of fulfilling their baptisms. Sprinkling, pouring or full immersion.

Only one can show by its mode a picture of the death, burial and resurrection of Christ.  Col 2:12

Baptism requires a proper mode, a proper administrator and a proper subject.

The proper subject is one who believes that Jesus is the savior and wishes to answer a good conscience toward God.  Children and infants can’t necessarily express belief and faith in God or answer a good conscience. 

 

Baptism does not affect your eternal life.  It does not grant you eternal life and is only a symbol of the putting away of the filth of the flesh. Anyone who tells you that you must be baptized in order to be saved for eternal Heaven doesn’t understand the scriptures.

Baptism - In God's Ark

There is a salvation in baptism, but it doesn’t make you fit for eternal heaven.  The blood of Christ alone does that.  The salvation is temporal - earthly.  As Noah and his family were saved by water, they were not made fit for heaven and immortal glory by the ark.  Baptism is the public acknowledgment that God has worked in your heart and soul and convicted you to align yourself with the bride, the church, the called out assembly.

 

1Pe 3:20 Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water.

1Pe 3:21 The like figure whereunto [even] baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:

The ark was like unto a floating coffin - sealed to keep the waters of the evil world out, symbolizing death to the old world.

Most religions teach Noah spend years begging people to join him in the ark and save themselves from the coming flood. The scriptures teach only Noah and his wife, sons and their wives were allowed into the ark.  Even Noah’s brothers and sisters were not allowed to enter...

Brother Royce Ellis

BAPTISM 2

BAPTISM
By Elder Lynn Russell

   The church of the Lord Jesus Christ has two ordinances; Baptism and The Lord’s Supper.  The washing of the saints’ feet is connected to The Supper and is a command of Our Lord.  One must have been baptized and in good standing with their church to participate in this high privilege.

   Baptism is a picture of the death, burial and resurrection of The Lord Jesus Christ.  When one is baptized, that one is to arise to walk in newness of life.

   Three things are necessary to constitute a legal baptism: Proper candidate, proper mode and proper administrator.

Candidate and Mode
   Mt 3:7: “But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees come to his baptism, he said unto them, O generation of vipers, who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come?” To Repent is to change the mind; Conversion changes the actions.
   Mt 3:13: “Then cometh Jesus from Galilee to Jordan unto John, to be baptized of him.”
   Mt 3:14: “But John forbad him, saying, I have need to be baptized of thee, and comest thou to me?”
   Mt 3:15: “And Jesus answering said unto him, Suffer it to be so now: for thus it becometh us to fulfil all righteousness. Then he suffered him.”
   Ac 2:37: “Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?”
   Ac 2:38: “Then Peter said unto them, 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.”
   Ac 2:39: “For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.”

Phillip and the Eunuch
   Ac 8:35: “Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus.”
   Ac 8:36: “And as they went on their way, they came unto a certain water: and the eunuch said, See, here is water; what doth hinder me to be baptized?”
   Ac 8:37-38: “And Philip said, If thou believest with all thine heart, thou mayest. And he answered and said, I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. 38. And he commanded the chariot to stand still: and they went down both into the water, both Philip and the eunuch; and he baptized him.”
   Ac 8:39: “And when they were come up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord caught away Philip, that the eunuch saw him no more: and he went on his way rejoicing.”
   Ac 22:16: “And now why tarriest thou? arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.”
   Ga 3:27: “For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.”
   Ro 13:14: “But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.”
   1Pe 3:21: “The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:”

   “Why tarriest  thou?”

Administrator
   Eph 4:8: “Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.”
   Eph 4:11: “And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;”
   Eph 4:12: “For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:”
   Eph 4:13: “Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:”
   Eph 4:14: “That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;”
   Heb 5:4: “And no man taketh this honour unto himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron.”

   Each local church must prayerfully consider gifts as they become manifest and try them out. 

   1Ti 5:22: “Lay hands suddenly on no man, neither be partaker of other men's sins: keep thyself pure.”

   Beware of the man that wants to take this honor unto himself and not willing to await the church's judgment.  When a church is satisfied, they will call for his ordination and after he has come under the hands of a presbytery, he has the authority to preach and baptize.  May the church shine out as "a city set upon a hill" Mt 5:14.

 Sing with me and notice every word.

1 Humble souls who seek salvation Through the Lamb's redeeming blood, Hear the voice of revelation, Tred the path that Jesus trod.
4 Jesus says, "let each believer be baptized in my name"  He himself in Jordon's river, Was immersed beneath the stream.

   May your joy be full.  Humbly, Elder Lynn H Russell

Baptism and Communion Among Primitive Baptists

Baptism and Communion Among Primitive Baptists

Elder Clayton Nowell

 There are two ordinances in the New Testament Church.  Baptism allows us to enter the fellowship of the church and was intended to be a one-time event. However, fundamental departures from the teaching of Christ and His apostles have for centuries moved the old church to insist upon re-baptism of those who were baptized under other doctrines, but who later wished to unite with us.

In true baptism, one is not only identifying himself with Jesus, but also the truth of what Jesus death and resurrection accomplished.  If one realizes that his former affiliation and beliefs fundamentally clashed with the truth, why should he expect that his baptism was acceptable.  Re-baptism allows him to once again have an answer of a good conscience and become identified with more truth.  Further, after submission to the ordinance of baptism, members may observe communion with others of like faith and order. If others believe differently from us, we can love them, pray for them, help them whenever they need it, and enjoy whatever Christian fellowship we can.  But, when it comes to partaking in communion, it is a time for everyone to be on the same page as they say this is what we believe about the person and work of Christ.  Others are welcomed to observe their communion as they see fit; but, they should not expect us to overlook basic doctrinal differences to admit them to our communion and thereby ask us to change the standard our brethren have observed since the days of the apostles.  I have tried to express this in kindness.  We wish not to offend anyone, but we want our position understood.    CN

Baptist Skepticism of the Revolutionary War

Baptist Skepticism of the Revolutionary War
Written by Admin  
 
I want to share a few thoughts in the aftermath of yesterday's Supreme Court ruling on "Obamacare."
 
Baptists have always believed in a firm separation of Church and State. It is hard for us, who lack the historic Baptist's experience, to understand their conviction on this matter. Anabaptists (the forefathers of Baptists) went as far as to forbid their members from holding public office, which I feel to be a bit extreme but understandable given their harsh persecution from religious governments. In the Colonial days, Baptists still very much believed in a separation of Church and State, as demonstrated by John Leland's petition to James Madison for religious liberty.
 
But, did you know many Baptists were initially skeptical of the Revolutionary War? After being persecuted by other Christian groups in the Colonies and even the Colonial Governments, Baptists feared many of their peers desired "liberty from oppression that they might have liberty to oppress." The persecution was so great it is reported that over 30 Baptist preachers were arrested in Virginia in the 1760s and 1770s, the time directly preceding the War.
 
Reportedly, Baptists would later see the war and new Nation as providential. Yet, initially they were skeptical and even lamented the SPIRITUAL DAMAGE the war had done to their communities.
 
In writing of a great revival in the area, James Manning, an English Baptist preacher, wrote the following to a fellow minister in November 1776, "the fatal 19th of April the day of the Lexington battle, like an electric stroke put a stop to the progress of the work, as well as in other places as here. Oh horrid war! How contrary to the spirit of Jesus!"
 
Was it that Baptists were loyal to England's tyranny? No, not at all. They just realized that they belonged to a Kingdom not of this world. They were but pilgrims and strangers. We only have so much energy, why not put that to work in the Lord's Kingdom?
 
In one of the most politically charged eras in American history, we could learn a lot from our forefathers in the faith. Vote, peacefully share your opinions, pray for your leaders, but above all "seek ye first the Kingdom of Heaven."

Battlefield Ethics of the Good Soldier

2Ti 2:3

Battlefield Ethics

Of The

“good soldier” 2Ti 2:3

It is required of the “good soldier of Jesus Christ” to possess and employ exemplary “battlefield ethics”. Those who conduct themselves ethically are those who live in accordance with the principles of right and wrong that govern Christian peoples. These principles are candidly and authoritatively recorded in the Holy Scripture. Those who are known as Christian people are closely scrutinized by those from within and without the Church. While we must concern ourselves about our public view, our ultimate quest must be to please our Lord by seeking to live according to His ‘code of conduct’. 

A soldier engaged in combat is constantly exposed to fearsome, life threatening situations. There are times when ethical shortcuts might SEEM justified to secure safety and to accomplish the desired end. An ethical soldier will strive, even in the face of death, to obey the commandments of his commander, following the rules of engagement laid down by the commander. 

Paul uses the “good soldier” allegory because service to our Lord is not easy. Service to the Lord may require great sacrifice of both material things and human pride. 

The true “good soldier of Jesus Christseeks to learn and obey the commandments and will of Jesus Christ (the Commander) no matter how great the opposition or trial. It doesn’t make any difference what others do or say, the “good soldier” will strive for obedience to Christ above all others. Jesus said, “If you love me, keep my commandments” (Joh 14:15). Notice that we are to keep Christ’s commandments, not just those commandments that agree with our human nature, and not just those commandments that others agree with

Our military, in spite of the dreadful nature of war, is required to conduct itself in a moral fashion on the battlefield. Some have not; therefore, disgracing themselves and the nation. So it is with the soldier of Jesus Christ. Failure to employ Biblical ethics in our service is reprehensible. Ethical short cuts on the battlefield may be met with severe punishment. The soldiers of Jesus Christ are likewise held accountable for their conduct. 

From personal experience, the unkind and spiteful things that are spoken and written by others can be very painful and can yield venomous anger. We find that “A wholesome tongue is a tree of life: but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit” (Pr 15:4); thus, a perverse tongue in action is most unethical on our Lord’s service. A loose tongue or pen can be devastating as we find in this proverb, “A froward perverse man soweth strife: and a whisperer separateth chief friends” (Pr 16:28). The Psalmist exhorts, “Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile.” (Ps 34:13). King David proclaims, “I will take heed to my ways, that I sin not with my tongue: I will keep my mouth with a bridle, while the wicked is before me” (Ps 39:1). Instead of employing vial, unethical speech the Psalmist proclaims, “My tongue also shall talk of thy righteousness all the day long: for they are confounded, for they are brought unto shame, that seek my hurt” (Ps 71:24). Jesus Christ, in Mt 5:21-22 puts the loose tongue on par with murder. Peter exhorts to ethical behavior this way, “For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile” (1Pe 3:10). 

The ethical “good soldier” will “Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath” (Eph 4:26). Anger boils within God’s children as much as anyone else, but we are commanded to control it, to guard our tongue, to restrain ourselves. As Jesus Christ told the disciples, “Behold, I send you forth as sheep in the midst of wolves: be ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves” (Mt 10:16). This instruction may seem to be unreasonable. An “eye for an eye” (Mt 5:38) many times seems justified and altogether appropriate. It just doesn’t seem humanly reasonable that Jesus Christ would expect us to keep taking abuse and all manner of ill treatment and not fight back. One brother said, “its just not natural, God made us able to defend ourselves and we should”. But what seems natural may not be ethical conduct for a “good soldier”. The Lord’s commandment to His disciples, to “dust off your feet” and leave (Mt 10:14), is wise council when the human urge to fight back begins to rise up. To dust off and leave is not to be cowardly. As a matter of fact it takes much more strength to bridle the tongue than it does to let it loose. Additionally, It is simply not our battle to face down an ill tempered, mean spirited, hardnosed brother. That is Christ’s job, and He doesn’t need us doing His job. At a time when awful things were being said, Hezekiah said to Jerusalem, “With him is an arm of flesh; but with us is the LORD our God to help us, and to fight our battles. And the people rested themselves upon the words of Hezekiah king of Judah” (2Ch 32:8). Our job is to carry out our duties being “wise as serpents, and harmless as doves” (Mt 10:16). I remember one occasion when I was listening to a brother speak, I became so mad that my heart began pounding so loudly in my chest that I’m certain those sitting on either side of me could hear it. My flesh wanted to not only get his eyes and his teeth, but strip him of his arrogant tongue as well. I cannot say that my inherent goodness restrained me from my angry designs; I must confess that I was so emotionally overwhelmed with anger that I could not speak. For that I am most thankful to my Lord, for had I lashed back, the problem would have only worsened and I would have shown that I was no better than the offending brother. It is our duty to our Lord Jesus Christ to serve ethically, to do as Paul said of himself, “But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway” (1Co 9:27). 

The ethical, “good soldier of Jesus Christ” is to live by a code of conduct which may run contrary to human nature. For example, Paul writes, “Why do ye not rather take wrong?” (1Co 6:7), telling us to just take it when we are mistreated and do not lash back. He specifically tells us that we are not to fight back when he writes, “See that none render evil for evil …” (1Th 5:15). Paul insistently instructs the ministry:

Proper, ethical conduct by the ministry is absolutely required. Peter tells us why. The ministers, as ethical “good soldiers of Jesus Christ” are to be “ensamples to the flock” (1Pe 5:3). The Word Of Truth is to not only be preached from the pulpit, but it is to be practically demonstrated by those who preach it. 

As we fight the good fight of faith in this present day, it is required of us all to meekly live our lives in obedience to Jesus Christ, even those commandments that require restraint and meekness of us. 

Notice with care, the following examples of wise council for ethical conduct:

 May God bless us to live ethically and meekly before all men!

BE AN OVERCOMER

1Jo 5:4-5

69

 

John’s exhortation to Christian love concludes with the affirmation that God’s “commandments are not grievous”[lit. burdensome].  {1Jo 5:3} That is true in a two-fold sense: (1) In terms of the character of God’s commandments, they are not like the hard rules and regulations imposed by the Pharisees- burdens “grievous to be borne”{Mt 23:4; Ac 15:10} -but are the standards of a loving Father who seeks the highest welfare of His children. Christ’s yoke is easy and His burden light; {Mt 11:28} (2) In terms of the fact that we have been given the ability to keep them:“ For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world...”.{ 1Jo 5:4} [a]

 

When an individual is born again, he is given the gift of faith. {Eph 2:8} John Stott writes, “By the use of the neuter ‘whatsoever’ John states the principle in its most general and abstract form. He does so to emphasize not ‘the victorious person’ but ‘the victorious power’. It is not the man, but his birth from God, which conquers.” The gift of faith implanted in the soul equips God’s child with the necessary resources to live a life of victory over the world that once dominated every part of his existence. It is because God has given us faith that we can say, “His commands are not irksome.”

 

Does the fact that someone has been born again, then, guarantee that he will overcome the world? Not necessarily. Notice that John proceeds to ascribe the victory not to the fact that someone has been born again, but to the exercise of his faith: “And this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.  {1Jo 5:4} [b] The sequence of thought is clear: First, God has equipped us with the necessary tools to live a victorious life; {1Jo 5:4} [a] Second, We must utilize the resources He has given in order to live victoriously; {2Jo 13} [b] Third, Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ- that is, a gospelly-informed trust and confidence in the Savior- is the key ingredient to the Christian’s conquest over sin in his life {1Jo 5:5}

 

The Premise

 

Implied in the language of these verses is a truth about the nature of the Christian life. The New Testament frequently depicts the life of discipleship in terms of an athletic contest or military campaign. In this conflict, the Christian will either conquer or be conquered. He will either be a victor or a victim. The goal is to overcome, not to succumb in defeat.

 

Ro 8:37 indicates that every child of God is already victorious -in fact, more than victorious -through Jesus Christ. In Him, we have been emancipated from penalty of sin. Because Christ won the battle, the warfare is accomplished. Isa 40:1ff. Positionally, we are victors through the cross.

 

But in practical terms, God’s people still face the daily challenge to live victoriously in a world that is characterized by ungodliness. The war is over but the side-skirmishes of daily discipleship continue. John’s question is, “Will you be a victim to the world, or will you be an overcomer?” Just as the Lord Jesus “overcame the world”,{Joh 16:33} so His followers are called to live lives above the lowlands of this fallen world system.

 

The Particulars

 

What precisely does that mean? In what specific areas does the world threaten the child of God?

 

First, the child of God is called to overcome the world’s obsessions, values, and attitudes. In 1Jo 2:16, John defines “the world”by its dominant characteristics: “... the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life...” Living in a fallen world, we are bombarded with temptation to sin. Ours is a world driven by the principle of personal gratification. Self-fulfillment is touted as the supreme objective in this fallen world system. It urges, “Satisfy your desire for pleasure (i.e. “lust of the flesh”), for possessions (i.e. “lust of the eyes”), and for prestige (i.e. “pride of life”).”But when the child of God falls into sexual sin, pursues materialistic goals, or adopts a way of thinking that is focused on himself, the enemy of Christ has scored a significant victory.

 

Second, we must overcome the world’s persecution. {1Jo 3:1,13} The world will attempt to silence the Christian’s testimony -to intimidate him to soften his stance -through the pressure of persecution. {Joh 15:18}[ff] The child of God must not succumb to discouragement, cowardice, or silence in the face of opposition from this ungodly world. John encourages, “Be an overcomer!”

 

God’s people must also live victoriously over the world’s distractions and pull upon the heart. Jesus talked about the “cares of this world”which tend to divert attention from Him and His word. {Mt 13:22} The sheer abundance of daily cares is frequently Satan’s tool to sidetrack God’s people from “the one thing needful.” Further, the glittering wealth of Vanity Fair is enticing to man’s old nature, drawing the heart like metal to a magnet. No wonder Paul warned, “Be not conformed to this world.”  {Ro 12:2}

 

In the fourth place, we are called to overcome the temptation to please the world and to court its approval.  {Jas 4:4} If a Christian loses sight of his Lord and becomes preoccupied with his own popularity, he will inevitably compromise the glory of God. {Joh 5:43-44; 12:43} How subtle is the danger! Many strong men have been defeated at just this point.

 

Finally, God’s born-again child is called to overcome the world’s wisdom. {1Co 1:20-21; 3:19} The journey of Christian discipleship is a precarious act of navigating one’s way through the mine-field of unbiblical ideas. Every day, we are inundated in popular culture with secular, man-centered ways of thinking. How many of God’s people have set out to honor Him only to be defeated because they were duped by the world’s falsehoods?

 

The Prescription

 

Someone wonders, “Is it possible to overcome the world?” Well, yes. Jesus “overcame the world.”  {Joh 16:33} How, then, can we overcome?

 

John answers, “by faith.”  {1Jo 5:4} Interestingly, this is the only time the noun “faith”appears in 1 John, though the verb “to believe” occurs nine times. John says, “This is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith.”

 

The reference to “our faith” speaks of the action of trusting in Jesus Christ. Of course, this “faith” is first “born of God”{1Jo 5:4}[a], that is, created by God in the soul at regeneration. But John takes a further step and claims that this “faith” must be informed by the gospel, move toward Christ and embrace Him in confident trust: “Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?”  {1Jo 5:5}

 

What does this mean in practical terms? It means that the believer in Christ has the strength and resources necessary, through faith in the Savior, to live victoriously. Regardless of circumstances around him, feelings within him, or consequences ahead of him, the Christian can be an overcomer like his Lord was when he was in the world. By his God, the believer can "leap over a wall and run through a troop." {Ps 18:29} Because he knows his God, he is "strong and does exploits." {Da 11:32} Through "the blood of the Lamb and the word of God" he can "overcome" the devil. {Re 12:11} By pleading the merit of Christ, he can save himself from this ungodly world. {Ga 1:4; Ac 2:40} By the knowledge God gives him in the gospel, he can "escape the pollutions of the world." {2Pe 2:20}

 

Faith, born of God in man’s soul and reaching forth to grasp Christ in confidence and trust, is the prescription for victory in the Christian life. Through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, you can be an overcomer.

 

Be Ready To Answer

Be Ready To Answer
Written by Ben Winslett  

"But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear..."1Pe 3:15

Why do you believe what you believe?

It is easy, when one is raised in the church, to hold to a certain belief or theological position simply because it is what he or she grew up hearing. It is comfortable, like an old pair of jeans or a favorite cap. The truth rings as a familiar, beloved sound in your ears. Yet, the Disciple of Christ is called of God to not only believe certain truths, but also to be fully aware of where such truths are taught in God's Word.

Peter's above exhortation speaks volumes to the pupil of Christ. We are to be ready to give an answer. Readiness implies preparedness, a preparedness to show a curious inquirer the Biblical reason behind a theological position. Readiness implies that one has studied the only Rule of faith and practice, God's Holy Writ. When confronted with the question, "why do you believe in Predestination," a ready man can reply "because God's Word teaches it in Eph 1 and Ro 8." What a shame it would be, for a Disciple to respond with "well, that's just what I believe," or even worse, " I don't know."

Paul wrote to the Thessalonians (1Th 1:4) "knowing brethren beloved, your election of God." Upon what information was this knowledge founded? Paul specified this immediately following when he wrote, "For our gospel came not unto you in word only, but also in power, and in the Holy Ghost..." The Thessalonian Christians believed in election, yea - they KNEW their election, because of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Their belief was founded in Bible truth.

May we ever be found as the noble Bereans, who searched the scriptures daily to see if these things are so. Let us form our views based exclusively upon "thus saith the Word of the Lord."

BE SCRIPTURAL

BE SCRIPTURAL
By
Elder A.D. Wood

   Some say that man is a tool in God’s hand.  If that be so, who is responsible for what he does, man or God?  I say God is responsible for the acts of man, if he is a tool moved about by the hand of God.  If a vicious brute rape an innocent young girl, God has moved him to do that, if he is a tool in God’s hand.  If a man lies, gets drunk, murders the innocent, and does the many other things that are evil, God moved him to do that, and the man couldn’t have done otherwise.  The Bible teaches us to “Lie not one to another.”  If God has predestinated for us to lie, there is no harmony between it and the gospel, for the gospel contradicts His predestination.  He tells us not to lie.  I am going to say that we can do what God says for us to do.  If we can’t, then God told us to do something that we couldn’t do.  If God has predestinated that we should lie, and the gospel tells us not to lie, and we do lie, then what does God chastise us for?  It couldn’t be disobedience, because we are only a tool in God’s hand and couldn’t help it.  If all the acts of men are a part or embraced in His predestination, then one is as sure as the other.

   Now notice this text: “And when it was day, certain of the Jews banded together, and bound themselves under a curse, saying they would neither eat nor drink till they had killed Paul.”  What is the predestination in this text, if these men are tools in God’s hand?  To slay Paul?  That is, that was the purpose expressed in the acts of men which are a part of God’s predestination.  The purpose of these people was not a part of God’s predestination, neither their acts, because they were overthrown.  If it were God’s predestination, He overthrew His own predestination.

   Now, if this doesn’t express His predestination in these few words, how are you going to prove it by the Bible, if predestination embraces all the acts of men?  I am sure that God’s foreknowledge embraces all events, but the word “predestination” is only used in connection with salvation.  The best way to find out the meaning of a word is to see how it is used and what is connected with it, and use it that way, then we will be scriptural.

    A.D. Wood
(From “The Primitive Baptist”, Dec. 4, 1947)

BEHOLD! I STAND AT THE DOOR!

BEHOLD! I STAND AT THE DOOR!
A sermon by Elder L.C. Swanner,
Over radio at Jonesboro, La.

  “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.”

   Here we have the language of Jesus to the church of the Laodiceans. Jesus was not telling a person here if you are willing, I will give you life. Too many times this Scripture is quoted by ministers trying to tell his audience—the unsaved, so to speak, Jesus is knocking at the door of your heart wanting to save you and you just have not let Him in. He cannot save you unless you open-up your heart and let Him come in. This text does not even imply that, neither does any other text in the Bible. Every time Jesus speaks to the dead they live! He is the power behind the voice and he is the voice! He gives eternal life—does not offer it—and they live! They shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my Father’s hand.

   This is hard for many of the Lord’s children to believe when they have been taught and cradled in the thought they saved themselves. Every invitation of Jesus to an individual to come to Him is in service, is after He has saved him from his sins. Every thirsty individual, every hungry individual, every individual who feels to be naked; these thoughts are to him and are of a spiritual nature. Jesus invites them to come, because he is their spiritual Head. The fountain of living waters. He is the bread from heaven to fill their hungry souls, and He has the spiritual garments to clothe the individual who desires to be clothed, and Jesus is able! Even after he does this for one, His supply is not diminished, so that someone else desiring the same will be left out. Jesus has told us: “Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.” The individual is a blessed character. And Jesus’ promise to such an individual is sure. How many times in your life have you felt to be spiritually thirsty and then feel the illumination of your spirit, or your love for God to be stronger. Your hunger and thirst has been filled, yet this happens over and over in our life’s experience.

   Isaiah teaches “when the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst, I the Lord will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them.”—Isa 41:17. Many times churches of today find themselves in the condition of the Laodiceans. They are indifferent; this is also applicable to individuals. They are neither cold nor hot in the service of God. The Lord told them because of this condition He would spew them out of His mouth. Does not say one thing about them being lost in hell, but because they were satisfied, He would that they were either cold or hot! And because they were not, God’s righteous judgment was to be pronounced upon them. Because they were well-off in their own estimation, they did not realize how wretched they were; did not realize how poor they were; how blind and how naked they were in this lukewarm condition. The Lord is telling them, and where these things are found today, the lesson applies, also. And after the individual or church has these conditions remedied, they are to anoint their eyes with eyesalve that they may see! What a blessing if God’s people today would anoint their eyes with eyesalve that their spiritual eyes might be opened to the truth and not closed, because of the gods of this world. As stated before, he is not trying to save the individual, but it is an invitation to you, as God’s child, to open your heart to these things, which are in Christ Jesus.

   You may ask if Jesus saves from the guilt of sin and then the many invitations in the Bible of Jesus to the individual to come to me and I will give you rest, or seek and ye shall find, or knock and it shall be opened to you, or ask and it shall be given unto you, why do these things? Jesus tells us our heavenly Father knoweth what we stand in need of before we ask. However, as in the first text, He did not say: I will open your heart, but if any man will open the door, I will come in and sup with him and he with me. What a wonderful privilege it is to go to God in prayer, in faith and open up your heart to Him and to feel the sweet presence of Jesus in your heart supping with you!

   As we sup with Him, we can feel the truthfulness of the statement of David when he said, “I have been young and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor His seed begging bread.” We do not live as close to Jesus as we should, but He has promised, and it is a glorious promise, that I will never leave or forsake you.

(From “For The Poor”, December. 1965)

Being Joyful

Dear Ones,

     A sure prescription for feeling bad, hopeless, and discouraged about today’s happenings, would be to set your focus upon them and spend a lot of time thinking about how helpless you are in trying to set it all aright.  Do you know that there is not one verse of scripture in all 66 books of the Bible that tells you to do that?  So, don’t do it!  It will just drag you down and fuel anger and discontentment.  And, that is just where the devil would love for you to be.  You’ll just keep complaining instead of being thankful.  And with such a mind, you might as well be saying: I have no reason to be joyful, I don’t have all the help I need, and this world is out of control.  But that’s a bunch of discouraging lies Satan would love for you to embrace! 

     Believers in Christ have every reason to be joyful – just look at what He did for you on the cross!  You do have all the help that you need – Jesus said, “I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.” (Joh 14:18)  What more could you want than that?  And, while there are a lot of things that are not right in the world today, it’s not because it is out of God’s control, because “He doeth according to his will in the army of heaven, and among the inhabitants of the earth: and none can stay his hand, or say unto him, What doest thou?” (Da 4:35)  Now, isn’t it more comforting to think on God’s love for you and on His limitless ability than to dwell upon all of your inabilities?  Granted, it hasn’t changed the world one bit.  But, it will change your world.  And, voicing this confidence in the Lord can help the world of those around you.

     So, leave the negativity to the unbelievers!  Focus your mind upon verses like Ps 146:5, which says, “Happy is he that hath the God of Jacob for his help, whose hope is in the LORD his God.”  And why is he happy?  Because he is trusting in the Lord for his help, and to the Almighty God as the surety of his hope.  His focus is upon God’s ability and His faithfulness.  This is the best prescription available to make life livable, yea even joyful, instead of seeking help from the vanities of this world.  Remember, Isa 26:3 says, “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.”

Elder Clayton Nowell

Being Thankful

      Now that we have made our way through the holiday season, I really do hope that we are continuing to be thankful.  Col 3:15 says, “And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful.”  God sent peace to earth when the Word was made flesh and dwelt among us. (Lu 2:14; Joh 1:14)  Jesus wrought peace for His people in dying for them upon Calvary’s cross.  And, after the Holy Spirit has quickened us, enabling us to hear the things of God, the gospel speaks peace to our souls as we hear the good news of the great work Christ accomplished for us and of the peace we now have with God in Him.  We will be eternally secure in that peace Jesus wrought for His people.

       However, our text says “let” the peace of God rule in your heart.  That tells us that there is a choice.  That says things can hinder us from enjoying the blessings of it.  That’s also why the next verse says to “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom.”  If we will just remember Jesus, and what He has done for us, that should stir our hearts to thank God for that peace which He wrought for us and that we have within us.  We have His Holy Spirit which witnesses to us that this peace is ours and it can’t be taken from us!

      But, when we forget His word, and when we are so entangled with the affairs of this life that we don’t take time to think of Him or thank Him for His blessings, then what is “ruling” in our heart is the desires of the flesh.  And, that brings trouble instead of peace.  We are then “grieving” the Holy Spirit by walking in the flesh, rather than walking in the Spirit.  Ro 8:6 tells us, “For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace.”  Friends, the knowledge of these things is something for which we should thank the Lord daily!  And, the peace of God in our hearts is something else for which we should be thanking the Lord daily!  So, as we go through our day, may God bless us to remember His word and to remember His work for us on the cross.  Why, the very remembrance of those things should bring peace to our unworthy souls.  And finally, may we continue to offer up our thanksgiving to Him daily for all the blessings we have.

Elder Clayton Nowell

Believe according to the working of His Mighty Power

Believe according to the working of His Mighty Power
Written by Ben Winslett  

Ever read Eph 2:1? In that verse we find the following: "And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins.."

Paul is writing about Almighty God giving Spiritual life to those who are in a state of death in sin. Notice that verse begins with the word "and." This means that this precious verse is directly tied to the context of the preceding chapter. Allow me to share with you a portion of Eph 1 and the very thoughts of the Apostle Paul leading up to this well known, glorious verse.

Notice the following scripture from Eph 1:

The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints, And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power, Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places...

Notice a very important phrase in this paragraph! How do men believe? Does every human even have the ability to believe in Christ? This verse answers those questions.

Remember, Paul's thoughts are culminated with the phrase "And you hath He quickened," which means "made alive." Paul says that EVERY person who believes in the Lord Jesus Christ, believes "according to the working of His mighty power." What is this telling us? This verse is telling us that the only way a person believes is if God works His mighty power upon the said person. Let me say that a little differently, God must work His mighty power upon a person for that person to be able to believe!

Also, according to the above scripture this event in which God "works His mighty power" is tantamount to the event in which God raised up the Lord Jesus Christ from the dead. In simple terms, this "working" of God's mighty power is the same type of event as Christ's resurrection. For an individual to believe, it takes no less power than the very power of God that raised Jesus Christ from the dead! Christ must resurrect our souls.

Why? Well, the answer is simple. Prior to this event a person is "dead in trespasses and in sins." This refers to death in a spiritual sense. Just as a physically dead man can do nothing, being dead, a spiritually dead man can do nothing in a spiritual sense, including repentance and belief. Dead means dead! This is why, naturally speaking, there is "none that seeketh after God" and why "the natural man receiveth not" the things of God (Ro 3; 1Co 2:14).

We believe because a loving and holy God has given our dead, depraved souls new life in Jesus Christ, in essence making us "new creatures" (new creations) in Christ Jesus.

Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life. - Jesus Christ, Joh 5:24

Benefits of the Word

Benefits of the Word                                     
By Elder Vernon Johnson

Sometimes God’s people question the benefit of studying the scriptures. As they view themselves as having busy lives and many responsibilities laid upon them, to what purpose should they set the reading and studying of the scriptures as a priority?

There are many blessings to the reading and study of God’s word. First, the Lord told some unbelieving Jews to “search the scriptures, for in them ye think ye have eternal life and they are they which testify of me.” Thus the scriptures (old and new testament) are a continual testimony of Jesus. What child of God should not have a great interest in learning more about the one who saved him and gave him eternal life?

Second, the scriptures are spiritual food to the inner man. The Lord told Peter to “feed my lambs, feed my sheep, feed my sheep.” Paul told the elders at Ephesus to “take heed unto thyself and to all the flock over which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.” Peter admonished the elders to “feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight thereof...” Job said, “I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food.” Thus our souls are fed spiritually by the word of God.

Third, the scriptures are according to Ps 119:105, “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.” The scriptures not only illuminate the way we are presently living our lives, but guide us in the way we should live our lives. The Lord said, Whosoever heareth these sayings of mine and doeth them, I will liken unto a wise man who built his house upon a rock...” By reading and studying the scriptures and taking heed there unto we build our lives on a sure foundation that will secure us against the storms and trials of life.

Fourth, according to 2Ti 3:16-17, the scriptures are a “thorough furnisher unto all good works.” According to Eph 2:10 God has created us in Christ Jesus unto good works, which he hath afore ordained that we should walk in them. Since we have been created unto good works, how will we know how to perform the good works without obtaining a good knowledge of the scriptures? We are told to “study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”

Fifth, knowledge of the scriptures helps us in our warfare against sin. David said, “Thy word have I hid in my heart that I might not sin against thee.” When Satan tempted the Lord three times in the wilderness the Lord responded each time with, “It is written...” In admonishing us to put on the whole armor of God, Paul told us to have our loins girt about with truth. Thus if we are to stand strong in our battle against sin, we need knowledge of God’s word.

Sixth, knowledge of God’s word brings us peace, comfort, rest, and hope. The gospel ministry preaches the gospel of peace thus giving peace to our war-torn soul as we learn that Jesus has reconciled us to God by his sacrificial atonement on our behalf. Thru knowledge of God’s word we have rest from the burdensome toil of trying to get right with God when we learn that “Christ is the end of the law for righteousness.” The gospel of the grace of God comforts the children of God and gives us hope as we learn of God’s sure promises in the covenant of redemption.

Seventh, the word of God sets us free. It sets us free from false worship, false works, false beliefs, and from the bondage of false teachers and false religious systems.

These are just a few of the blessings of reading and studying God’s word.

BENJAMIN FRANKLIN'S MOTION

BENJAMIN FRANKLIN'S MOTION

In 1778, at the meeting of the Convention in Philadelphia, Benjamin Franklin made the motion to those assembled that the Convention should not proceed without an opening prayer each day. Said he: "I have lived for a long time, and the longer I live the more convincing proof I see of this truth, that God governs in the affairs of men. And if a sparrow cannot fall to the ground without His notice, is it probable that an empire can rise without His aid? We have been assured in the Sacred Writings that 'Except the Lord build the house, they labor in vain that build it' (Ps 127:1). I firmly believe this, and I also believe that without His concurring aid we shall proceed in this political building no better than the builders of Babel." Prayer was the foundation stone in our country's beginning. There should be more national prayer today.


---Advocate and Messenger, 1941

BETTER TO KNOW BEFORE WE SPEAK

BETTER TO KNOW BEFORE WE SPEAK

It is important that we not take a dogmatic stand on any Bible subject or make any positive pronouncements with regard to it until we know all that is taught about it in the Scriptures. Let me propose an example. We have heard it argued that the Bible does not say Jonah was swallowed by a whale, but by a "great fish" (Jon 1:17). It is true that the great fish that swallowed the prophet is not spoken of as a whale in the Book of Jonah, but in referring to that incident Christ Himself said it was a whale (Mt 12:40). "As Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale’s belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth." This settles the matter for anyone who takes the Bible to be the inerrant word of God and believes it to have been written by divine inspiration (2Ti 3:16).

We have also heard it argued that the Bible account of Jonah being swallowed by a whale couldn’t be true, because a whale’s throat is not big enough to swallow a man. But those who say such things not only fail to acknowledge God’s power but they ignore the fact that this was a "prepared" fish. "The Lord had prepared a great fish to swallow up Jonah." Those of us who believe in the omnipotence of God (Re 19:6) have no problem believing that the same God who spoke the universe into existence could also just as easily prepare a fish that would be capable of swallowing that universe if He chose to do so.

If we make bold assertions with regard to what the Bible says, or does not say, on any subject without knowing all that is written, we are almost surely going to show our ignorance. Many a time I have been embarrassed for those who have tried to impress me with their Bible knowledge, for as soon as they opened their mouth on a given subject they exposed the fact that they were either unfamiliar with the Scriptures or else they did not understand what they had read. It pays us to be careful what we say about what the Bible teaches until we know what it teaches.

I’ve also heard people say that the Bible declares that before the end of time we will not be able to tell one season from another except by the budding of the trees. Those who say this need to read Ge 8:22.   

—Elder Ralph Harris

Beware the leaven of the Pharisees

Beware the leaven of the Pharisees
Written by Ben Winslett  

Jesus said "Beware the leaven of the Pharisees and the Sadducees." What exactly is the leaven of the Pharisees?
 
Consider Mt 23:23: Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone.
They were great lawgivers and considered themselves to have kept the law. In fact, they made up other laws, heavy burdens, and commanded men to follow them (Mt 23:4). Yet, they were completely oblivious to the "weightier matter" of God's law, things like judgment (knowing what to do), mercy (being gracious to others), and faith (trusting God).
 
God, who is the only Righteous and Holy One, has been gracious to us. Grace is UNMERITED favor. Therefore, we should be gracious to others. Beware the leaven of the pharisees. Let us judge to do mercy to others by faith in Christ.

BIBLE ACRONYM

BIBLE ACRONYM

Bible
Instruction
Before
Leaving
Earth
(From a sermon by Elder Ronald Lawrence)

BIBLE CLASSES

BIBLE CLASSES

A brother writes me: "Please give me your views on Old Baptists having a Bible class." Now, I don't know what gave rise to this question-whether some have drifted into this practice, or why he asked the question; but as to that, it does not matter. This practice came from the world. Where, in the Bible, is there a "thus saith the Lord" for such a practice? It is certain, if Jesus Christ has not authorized it, it is unscriptural. Why not bring over all the practices of the ites of the land? Some of them have a "young people's program." I don't know exactly what this is for. But this I do know, the churches of the world have to have the things of the world to hold their members, because they have gathered in so many that know nothing about grace. Has it come to that with the Old Baptists? I am inclined to think, from the conduct of some, that they have gathered in some that are of the world, because they break over too often.

I joined the old church in my young and youthful days. I loved their simple form of worship. I left the world because I had all of it I wanted. I have ever been satisfied with the church that Jesus gave us. Of course all those who favor these new things will call me an "old fogy"; but a Bible class is only another name for Sunday school, and if you will just watch, the church that practices this will soon take another step toward the world.

Someone may ask, "Don't you believe in studying the Bible?" To be sure, I do; and I do study it, and admonish all God's people to study it. But you don't have to organize a Sunday school to do it. That is the way the Missionary spirit led out. The same could be said of the progressive spirit. But did they stop at that? No, indeed!

May the Lord help us to be satisfied to just be plain old-fashioned Baptists, like our fathers and mothers were.

---Elder S. N. Redford
The Primitive Baptist, 1939

BIBLE PECULIARITIES OF PRIMITIVE BAPTISTS

If the Primitive Baptists were to hold big revival meetings, tell graveyard stories for preaching, work on the sympathies of children and persuade them to profess religion whether they know anything about a change of heart or not, and just take everything they could get in order to have a big church, I guess they could have it all right.  But what would they have?  They would have about what other churches have---a lot of worldly-minded, self-righteous, giggling worldlings that could never be satisfied only by the things of the world.

    Give us the old-time, heartfelt religion in its simplicity which makes people rejoice and praise God right here on earth, and we are perfectly willing for worldly institutions and churches with all of their pride, formality and greed for show, worldly fame and popularity, to have everything that belongs to them.  The Primitive Baptists are so peculiarly attached to each other and their old-time service, which they have adhered to ever since the apostolic age, that they consider one day in the courts of the Lord better than a thousand anywhere else.  (Ps 84:10)

    The world in amazement wonders why the Primitive Baptists will sacrifice so much and go so far to meet each other in the service of God.  It is because the food their spirits want can be found nowhere else.  If their loyalty to each other and sacred devotion to Heaven's King is not real and prompted by His own everlasting love in their souls, then what else could be the cause, since it could not be for worldly gain or honor?

---Elder T. L. Webb, Sr.

    The Baptist Trumpet, 1913

BIBLE QUESTIONS from Glad Tidings

BIBLE QUESTIONS (July 2010)

1. Whose mouth did God choose to be the instrument by which the Gentiles would hear the word of the gospel and believe? (Ac 15:7)

2. Who did Paul and Barnabas choose to take as they separated and returned to the cities where they had preached?  (Ac 15:37-40)

3. What was the Philipian jailor going to do with the sword he drew out after the earthquake and the prison doors opened? (Ac 16:27)

4. What men was Paul waiting to come to Athens when he saw the city given to idolatry and tried to convert them?  (Ac 17:15-16)

5. What assurance has God provided that He hath appointed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness by that man He hath ordained? (Ac 17:31)

6. What was taken from the body of Paul and brought to the sick and diseases departed from them and evil went out?  (Ac 19:12)

7. What time was it when Boaz became afraid when he returned and saw a woman (Ruth) laying at his feet?  (Ru 3:8)

8. Who told Paul that over 40 men were waiting for him at the council who had bound themselves with an oath to kill him?  (Ac 23:16)

9. Who was the husband and wife who laid down their own necks for the life of Paul?(Ro 16:3-4)

10. What is the wisdom of this world in the eyes of God?  (1Co 3:19)

**********

WHERE IN THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And again, The Lord knoweth the thoughts of the wise, that they are vain.

2. In what place therefore ye hear the sound of the trumpet, resort ye thither unto us: our God shall fight for us.

3. Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, But speak, and hold not thy peace.

(Answers) (SCROLL DOWN)

x

x

x

x

x

x

x

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I Corinthians  (1Co 3:20)
2. Nehemiah  (Ne 4:20)
3. Acts  (Ac 18:9)

*************************************************************

BIBLE QUESTIONS (August 2010)

1. Who could lawfully eat of the shewbread in the house of God?  (Mr 2:26)

2. What is the lake of fire called that death and hell will be ultimately cast into? (Re 20:14)

3. The Manna that God fed the Israelites with in the wilderness was white like coriander seed and it tasted like what? (Ex 16:31)

 4.   What was the mystery of the seven stars and the seven golden candlesticks in the right hand of one like the Son of man?  (Re 1:20)

5. Why did Rebekah tell Jacob to arise and flee to her brother, Laban, in Haran?  (Ge 29:35)

6. While the Israelites were in Egyptian bondage, how did they spend most of their days? (Ex 5:7-8)

7. What was the reason king Ahasuerus became angry with queen Vashti?  (Es 1:12)

8. What did Elisha tell the Shunammite woman to do with the oil that had been miraculously multiplied?  (2Ki 4:7)

9. Who asked Pharaoh’s daughter if she would like for a nurse of the Hebrew women to be called to nurse the child Moses she had found? (Ex 2:7)

10. How did Abraham show his gratitude to the king of Salem, Melchizedek, for blessing him on his return from the slaughter of the kings? (Ge 14:20)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And the priests could not enter into the house of the Lord, because the glory of the Lord had filled the Lord’s house.

2. Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else.

3. Thou art of purer eyes than to behold evil, and canst not look on iniquity. . .

4. Behold I will send Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord.
(Answers) (SCROLL DOWN)

x

x

x

x

x

x

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE
ARE THESE VERSES?

1. II Chronicles  (2Ch 7:2)
2. Isaiah  (Isa 45:22)
3. Habakkuk  (Hab 1:13)
4. Malachi  (Mal 4:5)

*********************************************************

BIBLE QUESTIONS (September 2010)

1. What great prophet did Malachi predict would be sent by God to herald the coming of the Lord? (Mal 4:5)

2. Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that does what? (Ro 10:4)

3. What book of the Bible comes before and after the little book of Ruth?

4. Who carried away Judah and Jerusalem into captivity by the hand of king Nebuchadnezzar? (1Ch 6:15)

5. Paul had begotten the Corinthians through the gospel and as a father to them he beseeched them to do what? (1Co 4:15-16)

6. To what mountain did Elijah go as he fled from Jezebel after eating food and drink from the Lord? (1Ki 19:8)

7. What was the shape of the little cloud that Elijah’s servant saw arising out of the sea as a precursor to rain? (1Ki 18:44)

8. Who offered the apostles money for the power to give the Holy Ghost by the laying on of his hands? (Ac 8:18-19)

9. What would the Holy Ghost, sent to the disciples after Jesus’ ascension to heaven, bring to their remembrance?  (Joh 14:26)

10. What were the precious sons of Zion esteemed as in La 4:2?

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. The ancient and honourable, he is the head; and the prophet that teacheth lies, he is the tail.

2. Now for a long season Israel hath been without the true God, and without a teaching priest, and without law.

3. In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel.

4. Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.


(Answers) (SCROLL DOWN)

x

x

x

x

x

x

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Isaiah  (Isa 9:15)
2. II Chronicles  (2Ch 15:3)
3. Romans  (Ro 2:16)
4. I Corinthians  (1Co 1:8)

**********************************************************

BIBLE QUESTIONS (October 2010)

 1.  What did Samuel do to Agag, king of Amalek, Saul had captured rather than destroy as God commanded?  (1Sa 15:33)

 2.  What was the iron furnace from which the Lord had delivered the Israelites?  (De 4:20)

 3.  What are we to call our sister and call our kinswoman that they may keep us from the strange woman that flatters with her lips? (Pr 7:4-5)

 4.  If the law was not made for the righteous, then for whom was it made?  (1Ti 1:9)

 5.  Why must a man desiring the office of a bishop have a good report of them which are without?  (1Ti 3:7)

 6.  What happened to the rods that Pharaoh’s wise men, sorcerers and magicians cast to the ground before him?  (Ex 7:11-12)

 7.  Jesus has consecrated for us a new and living way, through the veil, into the holiest by the blood of Jesus; what is that veil?  (Heb 10:19-20)

 8.  Who was the fox that Jesus said to tell that He cast out devils, and do cures today and tomorrow and the third day he would be perfected? (Lu 13:31-32)

 9.  Paul gave Timothy a commandment in his charge to Timothy that he was to keep without spot, and unrebukable until when?  (1Ti 6:14)

10. Why did Sara receive strength to conceive seed and was delivered of a child when she was past age?  (Heb 11:11)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?
1. God having provided some better thing for us, that they without us should not be made perfect.

2. As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in him.

3. For it is a shame even to speak of those things which are done in secret.

4. This people have I formed for myself; they shall shew forth my praise.

SCROLL DOWN FOR ANSWERS
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
x
ANSWERS
FROM WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Hebrews  (Heb 11:40)
2. Colossians  (Col 2:6)
3. Ephesians  (Eph 3:12)
4. Isaiah  (Isa 43:21)

*******************************************************

BIBLE QUESTIONS (November 2010)

1. How many believed that Paul and Barnabas were sent as a light to the Gentiles and to be for salvation to the ends of the earth? (Ac 13:48)

2. How did the people react when they had seen Paul heal the cripple man in Lystra? (Ac 14:11)
 
3. Why did Paul take Timothy and circumcise him before he took him on their preaching journey throughout the cities?  (Ac 16:3)

4. Paul received many stripes for preaching the gospel; just how many stripes did he receive of the Jews for his efforts?  (2Co 11:24)
 
5. After the Lord apprehended Paul, he went to Arabia, returned to Damascus, then went to Jerusalem to see Peter. Just how long did he stay with Peter?  (Ga 1:18)

6. Why was Titus not compelled to be circumcised even though he was a Greek?  (Ga 2:3-4)

7. What did Paul say was the reason that those who were circumcised, but didn’t keep the law, required others to be circumcised?  (Ga 6:13)

8. What is the ornament that wives are to adorn themselves with that in the sight of God is of great price?  (1Pe 3:4)

9. What do we have that we are to gird up and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought to us at the revelation of Jesus Christ? (1Pe 1:13)

10. What is the consequences of sinning willfully after you have come to the knowledge of the truth?  (Heb 10:26-27)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God.

 2.   For it is the day of the Lord’s vengeance, and the year of recompences for the controversy of Zion.

 3.   Surely the Lord will do nothing, but he revealeth his secrets unto his servants the prophets.

 4.   Where the word of the king is, there is power: and who can say unto him, What doest thou?
(Answers on Page 8) 


SCROLL DOWN

X

X

X

X

X

X

X


**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I Peter  (1Pe 4:11)
2. Isaiah  (Isa 34:8)
3. Amos  (Am 3:8)
4. Ecclesiastes  (Ec 8:4)

********************************************************

BIBLE QUESTIONS (December 2010)

1. What determined whether the Israelites would stay where they were or get up and take their journey?  (Ex 40:36-37)

2. Why did Adam say that Eve, who was now bone of his bones and flesh of his flesh, would be called woman?  (Ge 2:23)

 3.   What did Adam and Eve know and feel after they ate of the forbidden fruit that they didn’t know prior to this transgression?  (Ge 2:25; 3:7)

4. What answer did Jesus give the Pharisees when they demanded when the kingdom of God should come?  (Lu 7:20-21)

5. God will judge individual children of God without showing any mercy to those who have not shown any what? (Jas 2:13)

6. Who were the gifts of God that spoke in the name of the Lord for an example of suffering affliction?  (Jas 5:10)

7. What reason does James give us that we are to submit ourselves to every ordinance of man? (Jas 2:13)

8. What condition is an individual in that has hatred toward his brother?  (1Jo 2:11)

9. What reason does John give that has allowed those who are of God to overcome the anti-Christ?  1Jo 4:4)

10. The first man Adam was made a living soul and the last Adam was made a what?  (1Co 15:45)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE
ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame.

 2.   Hearken unto me, O Jacob and Israel, my called; I am he; I am the first, I also am the last.

 3.   But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed.

4. His flesh shall be fresher than a child’s: he shall return to the days of his youth.

SCROLL DOWN for answers

*********

xx

xx

xx

xx

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I Corinthians  (1Co 15:34)
2. Isaiah  (Isa 48:12)
3. Galatians  (Ga 2:11)
4. Job  (Job 33:25)

*********************************************************

BIBLE QUESTIONS (January 2011)

1.         What did Cain say to the Lord after He told him he was cursed and would be a fugitive and a vagabond?  (Ge 4:13)

2.         What did the Lord do to Cain that would prevent someone from killing him? (Ge 4:15)

3.         Who was the father of the oldest man who ever lived, Methuselah?  (Ge 5:21-22)

4.         Why did God not lead the Israelites out of Egypt through the land of the Philistines?  (Ex 13:7)

5.         What was graven on the two onyx stones on the shoulders of the ephod that Aaron wore and bore before the Lord for a memorial?  (Ex 28:9)

 6.   What did the sons of Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, do that caused the Lord to send out a fire that devoured them that they died?  (Le 10:1-2)

7.         From what part of the tabernacle of congregation did Moses hear a voice speak to him as he entered its confines?  (Nu 7:89)

8.         How did Paul respond when Ananias, the high priest, commanded that he be smitten on the mouth?  (Ac 23:2-3)

9.         What did Paul tell the Romans to do after they had marked those which caused divisions contrary to sound doctrine?  (Ro 16:17)

10.       What does Paul say works for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory when we look to the eternal unseen things? (2Co 4:17)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1.         Hearken unto me, ye that know righteousness, the people in whose heart is my law; fear ye not the reproach of men; neither be ye afraid of their revilings.

2.         Then I said, I am cast out of thy sight; yet I will look again toward thy holy temple.

3.         (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;).

4.                  If we suffer, we shall also reign with him: if we deny him, he also will deny us:.

Answers SCROLL DOWN

XX

XX

XX

XX

XX

ANSWERS

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1.         Isaiah  (Isa 51:7)

2.         Jonah  (Jon 2:4)

3.         Ephesians  (Eph 5:9)

4.         II Timothy  (2Ti 2:12)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (February 2011)

1. How would Job answer the Lord when Job said,“Behold, I am vile; what shall I answer thee?” (Job 40:4)

 2.   What happened unto the Israelites when the new King of Egypt afflicted them more and more? (Ex 1:12)

3. What was the ark made of in which Moses’ mother placed him and laid him in the Nile River? (Ex 2:3)

4. What was mingled with the hailstones that came down from heaven after Moses stretched out his rod toward heaven?  (Ex 9:24)

5. For what purpose did the Lord rain bread from heaven upon Israel who were to go out and gather a certain amount every day? (Ex 16:4)

6. Of what material was Moses told to make the ark of the covenant?  (Ex 25:10)

7. Who came to Moses when he said, “Who is on the Lord’s side? Let him come unto me? (Ex 32:26)

8. Korah and his followers led a rebellion against Moses; why was Israel told to depart from the tents of these wicked men and to touch nothing of theirs?  (Nu 16:26)

9. Jephthah vowed that whatsoever came through the doors of his own house would be a burnt offering if he would be victorious over the people of Ammon; who came through his doors? (Jg 11:31,34)

10. Who said, “As thy soul liveth, there is but a step between me and death? (1Sa 20:3)

**********

WHERE IN THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Once have I spoken; but I will not answer: yea, twice; but I will proceed no further.

2. And my people shall dwell in a peaceable habitation , and in sure dwellings, and in quiet resting places.

3. So that we come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.
(Answers SCROLL DOWN)

*********

XX

XX

XX

XX

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Job  (Job 40:5)
2. Isaiah  (Isa 30:18)
3. I Corinthians  (1Co 1:7)


BIBLE QUESTIONS (March 2011)

1. What does God think to remember when He looks on the rainbow he sets in the cloud? (Ge 9:16)

2. What notable activity did Nimrod, son of Cush, become proficient at before the Lord?  (Ge 10:8-9)

3. What man before he was born was said to be a wild man, his hand would be against every man, and every man’s hand against him? (Ge 16:11-12)

 4.   How old was Abraham when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin? (Ge 17:24)

 5.   What were the two times that Esau told his father Isaac, that Jacob had supplanted him? (Ge 27:36)

 6.   What happened that caused the chief butler in the house of Pharaoh to remember Joseph who was still in prison? (Ge 41:8-9)

7. How old was Joseph when he was placed as second in command over all the land of Egypt? (Ge 41:46)

8. What did Joseph command his steward to put in Benjamin’s sack besides the money that was to be used to buy grain?  (Ge 44:2)

9. What did Israel (Jacob) see that revived his spirit and caused him to believe his son, Joseph, was still alive? (Ge 45:27-28)

10. What was Jacob’s dying request of his son, Joseph, just before he was gathered unto his people? (Ge 47:29-30)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And it shall come to pass, that before they call, I will answer; and while they are yet speaking, I will hear.

2. He hath filled the hungry with good things: and the rich he hath sent empty away.

3. He taketh the wise in their own craftiness; and the counsel of the froward is carried headlong.

(Answers SCROLL DOWN)

XX

XX

XX

XX

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1.   Isaiah  (Isa 65:24)
2. Luke  (Lu 1:53)
3.   Job  (Job 5:13)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (April 2011)

1. Why did Moses hide his face when the Lord spoke to him out of the midst of the burning bush? (Ex 3:6)

2. The Israelites were to sow their fields and prune their vineyards for six years; what were they to do in the seventh year? (Le 25:3-4)

3. Nebuchadnezzar was driven from men and ate grass like an oxen and his hair grew like the feathers of what bird? Da 4:33)

4. How did Israel know to take down the tabernacle and journey on or to remain where they were in their tents? Nu 10:21-22)

 5.   Just before Aaron died, Moses stripped him of his garments and put them upon what person? (Nu 20:28)

6. If a woman made a vow unto the Lord and her father or husband heard it, what could the father or husband do to confirm or void the vow? (Nu 30:3-8)

7. The children of Israel went out of Egypt with a high hand on the day after what great event? (Nu 33:3)

8. King Hezekiah prayed and the Lord sent an angel that destroyed the men and leaders of the king of Assyria. What happened to the king after he returned home? (2Ch 32:21)

 9.   Under what circumstance would God not hear the prayers of Israel when they spread forth their hand upward? (Isa 1:15)

10. What did the barbarians think Paul was at first when a venomous viper bit his hand on the island of Melita?  (Ac 28:4)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools.

2. Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.

 3.   For God speaketh once, yea twice, yet man perceiveth it not.
(Answers on Page 8)

Scroll down

x

x

x

x

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Romans  (Ro 1:22)
2. I Corinthians  (1Co 9:15)
3. Job  (Job 33:14)

**********

BIBLE QUESTIONS (June 2011)

1. For what purpose did Jesus take Peter, James and John upon the Mount of Transfiguration? Lu 9:28-29)

2. Sisera came into the tent of Jael, the wife of Heber, and asked for water but what did Jael give him? (Jg 4:19)

3. What did Gideon make of all the golden ear rings taken as prey from Midian and which Israel went whoring after? (Jg 8:25-27)

4. Who was the youngest of Gideon’s 70 sons that escaped the wrath of Abimelech who slew the other 69? (Jg 9:5)

5. Why did Jephthah’s daughter ask to be left alone for 2 months before she became a sacrifice Jephthah had vowed before the Lord? (Jg 11:37-39)

6. For what did Manoah entreat the Lord after his wife had told him a man of God appeared to her and promised a son? (Jg 13:8)

7. How did the angel of the Lord depart from the presence of Manoah and his wife? (Jg 13:20)

8. Samson wanted to take him a wife from the daughters of the uncircumcised Philistines but who did his parents want Samson to marry? (Jg 14:3)

9. What did Samson find in the carcase of the lion that he had previously slain? (Jg 14:8)

10. What means did Samson use to destroy and burn the standing corn and vineyard of the Philistines? (Jg 15:4-5)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. For the Lord will not forsake his people for his Great name’s sake: because it hath pleased the Lord to make you his people.

2. Or as an hidden untimely birth I had not been; as infants which never saw light.

3. Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of his world; I am not of this world.

(Answers SCROLL DOWN)


ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I Samuel  (1Sa 12:22)
2. Job  (Job 3:16)
3. John  (Joh 8:23)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (July 2011)

1. What caused the Lord to turn away his wrath to not destroy His people because of their gross disobedience? (Ps 106:23)

2. In the early church, who were tongues a sign for and prophesying a sign for? (1Co 14:22)

3. How long did it take Joseph and Mary to realize Jesus was not with them as they returned from Jerusalem? (Lu 2:44)

4. What three things does the Lord give to a man that is good in His sight? (Ec 2:26)

5. What will happen to the bread that is cast upon the waters after many days? (Ec 11:1)

6. When Israel asked Samuel for a king to judge them and be like other nations, who did they reject as their king? (1Sa 8:7)

7. When God sent Saul to Samuel, what question did Saul ask Samuel? (1Sa 9:18)

8. What did David do before king Saul that caused him to be refreshed as the evil spirit departed from him? (1Sa 16:23)

9. What did Tamar ask her brother, Amnon, to do Rather than force her to lie with him? (2Sa 13:13)

10. Who of the house of Saul cursed David and threw stones at him when he came to Bahurim? (2Sa 16:5-6)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Let thy garments be always white: and let thy head lack no ointment.

 2.   If I justify myself, mine own mouth shall condemn me: if I say, I am perfect. It shall prove me perverse.

3. He hath hedged me about, that I cannot get out: he hath made my chain heavy.

 4.   The Lord recompense thy work, and a full reward be given thee of the Lord God of Israel, under whose wings thou art come to trust.

(Answers SCROLL DOWN)

XX

XX


**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Ecclesiastes  (Ec 9:8)
2. Job  (Job 9:20)
3. Lamentations  (La 3:7)
4. Ruth  (Ru 2:12)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (August 2011)

1. What mission was Saul on when he was led to Samuel to be anointed the next king of Israel? (1Sa 9:3,20)

2. What had Saul done unauthorized that caused Samuel to say he had done foolishly and his Kingdom would not continue? (1Sa 13:12-13)

3. Why did Saul tell Jonathan he had to die for dipping the tip of his rod in honey and tasting it? (1Sa 14:24,43)

4. What was the false accusation against David by his brother, Eliab, for coming to the battle between Goliath and Israel? (1Sa 17:28)

 5.   Why did David take off the armour Saul had given him before going to fight the giant Goliath? (1Sa 17:39)

6. What happened that caused Saul to first eye David with mischief and envy? (1Sa 18:8-9)

 7.  What happened to David’s reputation among the people because he behaved himself more wisely than all the servants of Saul? (1Sa 18:30)

8. Saul sent messengers 3 different times to take David at Naioth but what happened each time to the messengers? (1Sa 19:20-21)

9. Saul commanded his servants to slay Ahimelech and all the priests for helping David but they refused so who did slay the 85 priests at Saul’s command? (1Sa 22:17-18)

10. What are we to cast down that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God and bring every thought unto the obedience of Christ? (2Co 10:5)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. But where shall wisdom be found? And where is the place of understanding?

2. For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying  unto thee, Fear not: I will help thee.

3. For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh.

4. Touch not; taste not; handle not.
xxxxx

xxxxx

ANSWERS

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1.     Job  (Job 28:12)

2.     Isaiah  (Isa 41:13)

3.     II Corinthians  (2Co 10:3)

4.     Colossians  (Col 2:21)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (September 2011)

1. John saw an angel come down from heaven having the key of the bottomless pit and what else in his hand? (Re 20:1)

2. What did Saul’s daughter, Michal, see David doing as she looks out the window as the ark of God came into the city of David? (2Sa 6:16)

3. Who killed Absalom as he hung suspended in an oak tree? (2Sa 18:14)

4. What condition did Solomon place on sparing Adonijah from death because he tried to usurp Solomon’s throne? (1Ki 1:52)

5. David did according to all God’s commands all his days except in what matter? (1Ki 15:5)

6. Why did king Ahab hate Micaiah the prophet and not want to inquire of him about going to battle with Jehoshaphat? (1Ki 22:8)

7. Jesus said, “It is finished” then bowed His head and gave up the ghost just after receiving what? (Joh 19:30)

8. What was gathered and shredded into the pot of pottage that caused the people to cry aloud, “There is death in the pot”? (2Ki 4:39)

9. What happened to Elisha’s servant who lied to him about taking money from Naaman the Syrian? (2Ki 5:27)

10. Why did Elisha weep before Hazael who had come to inquire if Benhadad, king of Syria, would recover from his sickness? (2Ki 8:12)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. For the leaders of this people cause them to err; and they that are led of them are destroyed.

2. The discretion of a man deferreth his anger: and it is his glory to pass over a transgression.

3. Howbeit thou art just in all that is brought upon us; for thou has done right, but we have done wickedly.

4. Doth not even nature itself teach you, that, if a man have long hair, it is a shame unto him?

***********


**********

**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE
ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Isaiah  (Isa 9:16)
2. Proverbs  (Pr 19:11)
3. Nehemiah  (Ne 9:33)
4. 1 Corinthians  (1Co 11:14)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (October 2011)

 1.   Elisha told king Joash to take an arrow and shoot out a window. What did he call that arrow just before he died? (2Ki 13:17)

2. Why was the birthright taken from Reuben who was the firstborn of Israel and given to the sons of Joseph, also a son of Israel? (1Ch 5:1)

3. Why would David not drink of the water of Bethlehem, even after his mighty men had gotten it for him at his orders? (1Ch 11:19)

4. The palace of the temple Solomon was to build was not for man but for whom? (1Ch 29:1)

5. How did king Asa react when Hanani, the seer, told him he had done foolishly in making a league with the king of Syria? (2Ch 16:9-10)

6. King Jehoshaphat joined with the wicked king of Israel, Ahaziah, to make ships. What happened to those ships? (2Ch 20:36-37)

7. What prophet wrote Jehoram and told him he would be stricken with disease of the bowels and die because of his evil ways? (2Ch 21:12-15)

8. A man that gets rich unlawfully will leave all his riches in the midst of his days and be a fool in the end. What is he compared to? (Jer 17:11)

9. Ezekiel saw a vision of a hole in the wall of the court; he was told to dig in the wall and behold a door he was to go through and behold what? (Eze 8:7-9)

10. At what hour of the day did Peter go up upon the housetop to pray and had the vision of beasts in a sheet let down from heaven? (Ac 10:9)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

2. Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an example.

3. Some men’s sins are open beforehand, going before to judgment; and some men they follow after.


****************


**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE
ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I Corinthians  (1Co 1:9)
2. Philippians  (Php 3:17)
3. I Timothy  (1Ti 6:21)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (November 2011)

1. Zedekiah, king of Judah, did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord and did not humble himself before what prophet? (2Ch 36:12)

2. When Jesus met the woman of Samaria as she came to draw water from Jacob’s well, where had the disciples gone? (Joh 4:8)

3. What did Joseph’s brothers see that caused them to hate him? (Ge 37:4)

4. What did Joseph do that caused his brothers to hate him even the more? (Ge 37:8)

5. Where did the angel of God tell Cornelius that Peter was dwelling as he instructed him to send for Peter? (Ac 10:6,32)

6. David laid down and slept at night and awaked because of what reason? (Ps 3:5)

7. What is pronounced against rebellious children that take counsel but not of God and cover with a covering but not of His spirit? (Isa 30:1)

8. When the sun shall go down no more and the moon shall neither withdraw itself, what shall be our light? (Isa 60:20)

9. What were the children crying in the temple that sorely displeased the chief priests and scribes? (Mt 21:15)

10. If we say we have fellowship with the Lord yet walk in darkness, what is our real condition? (1Jo 1:6)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Yea, before the day was I am he; and there is none that can deliver out of my hand: I will work and who shall let it?

2. And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.

 3.   Then the people of the land weakened the hands of the people of Judah, and troubled them in building.

4. And the next Sabbath day came almost the whole city together to hear the word of God.

*********


*********


**********

ANSWERS IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?
 
1. Isaiah  (Isa 43:13)
2. Jeremiah  (Jer 29:13)
3. Ezra  (Ezr 4:4)
4. Acts  (Ac 13:44)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (December 2011)

1. What was the reason Jesus gave for the householder not giving permission for his servants to gather up the tares from the field.” (Mt 13:29)

 2.   Who is the enemy that Jesus identified as the one who sowed the tares among the wheat? (Mt 13:39)

3. What was the city that sat solitary that had once been full of people but was now a widow and lost her greatness? (La 1:1-7)

4. What reason did the Lord give Jeremiah for not being afraid of the people to whom he was being sent by Him? (Jer 1:7-8)

 5.   Who said “In a little wrath I hid my face from thee for a moment, but with everlasting kindness will I have mercy on thee”? (Isa 54:8)

6. Because all God’s children shall be taught of the Lord, what shall they all have? (Isa 54:13)

7. When Jesus fed the multitude of five thousand men, he commanded the disciples to make them to sit down in companies of how many? (Lu 9:14)

8. When the woman with an issue of blood touched Jesus and the hem and His garment, what went forth from Jesus? (Lu 8:43-46)

9. Why did Jesus not commit himself to some who had believed in his name because they saw the miracles He did? (Joh 2:23-24)

10. What hour was it, being the hour of prayer, that Peter and John went up into the temple and encountered the man lame from his mother’s womb and healed him? (Ac 3:1-2)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, By what power, or by what name, have ye done this?

 2.   For whether we be beside ourselves, it is to God: or whether we be sober, it is for your cause.

 3.   Therefore, brethren, we were comforted over you in all our affliction and distress by your faith.


****

****

*******

ANSWERS IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Acts  (Ac 4:7)
2. II Corinthians  (2Co 5:13)
3. I Thessalonians  (1Th 3:7)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (January 2012)

1. What did Zechariah say would be opened to the house of David and to Jerusalem for sin and uncleanness? (Zec 13:1)

2. What did the Lord tell Jeremiah to do after king Jehoiakim had burned the first scroll he had written? (Jer 36:28)

3. Who said to his master, “What have I done unto thee, that thou hast smitten me these three times”? (Nu 22:28)

4. Who said, “God hath made me to laugh, so that all that hear will laugh with me? (Ge 21:6)

5. To whom shall the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings? (Mal 4:2)

6. The secret things belong unto the Lord God, but He revealeth His secrets unto whom? (Am 3:7)

7. Where were the Israelites sitting when they hanged their harps on the willows and wept as they remembered the Lord? (Ps 137:1-2)

8. When Joseph’s brothers came to Egypt to buy food during the famine, what did Joseph accuse them of? (Ge 42:9)

9. What do we see as the end of the Lord when we hear of the patience of Job and consider it? (Jas 5:11)

10. After what manner did the holy women of old time live and do who trusted in God? (1Pe 3:5)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and destroy: who art thou that judgest another?

2. Who shall give account to him who is ready to judge the quick and the dead?

3. Therefore now, O Lord, take, I beseech thee, my life from me; for it is better for me to die than to live?

4. If thou shalt do this thing, and God command thee so, then thou shalt be able to endure, and all this people shall also go to their place in peace.

*******

****** 

ANSWERS

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. James  (Jas 4:2)
2. I Peter  (1Pe 4:5)
3. Jonah  (Jon 4:3)
4. Exodus  (Ex 18:23)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (February 2012)

1. When the apostles heard that Samaria had received the word of God, what two men did they send them? (Ac 8:14)

2. Under what circumstances is the hoary head a crown of glory to an individual? (Pr 16:31)

3. What kind of man says “there is a lion in the way and a lion in the streets?” (Pr 26:13)

4. Why did Solomon hate life and all his labour which he had taken under the sun? (Ec 2:17-18)

5. Who dwelt in his own hired house two whole years preaching the kingdom of God and receiving all that came to him? (Ac 28:31)

6. The prophet Obadiah had just a one chapter message for which of Israel’s neighbors? (Ob 1)

7. What had the scribes accused Jesus of doing when He said, “How can Satan cast out Satan”? (Mr 3:22-23)

8. Ezra opened the book of the law and all the people stood up, lifted up their hands and said what? (Ne 8:5-6)

9. When Ehud killed Eglon, the obese king of Moab, with a dagger, what happened to his dagger? (Jg 3:21-22)

10. Who did Jesus say was a murderer from the beginning and abode not in the truth? (Joh 8:44)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I called upon thy name, O Lord, out of the low dungeon.

2. Surely the Lord will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.

3. Now to him that worketh is the reward not reckoned of grace, but of debt.
 
4. Rejoice not against me, O mine enemy: when I fall, I shall arise; when I sit in darkness, the Lord shall be a light unto me.
(Answers on Page 8)

****

******

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Lamentations  (La 3:55)
2. Amos  (Am 3:7)
3. Romans  (Ro 4:4)
4. Micah  (Mic 7:8)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (March 2012)

1. How old was Noah when the flood of waters came upon the earth? (Ge 7:6)

2. What was wrong with Hezekiah who was sick unto death and a lump of figs was used to heal him? (Isa 38:21)

3. What was the reason Jesus gave the disciples for their inability to cast out the demon from the lunatic for a cure? (Mt 17:20)

 4.   What does the Lord pronounce upon the man that trusts in man and makes flesh his arm? (Jer 17:5)

5. Who did Jeremiah say had caused God’s people to go astray and go from mountain to hill and forget their resting place? (Jer 50:6)

6. The Lord told Ezekiel to open his mouth and eat What He would give him; what was in the hand that God sent to Ezekiel? (Eze 2:9)

7. The Lord told Ezekiel to prophesy to the dry bones of the house of Israel and say what unto them? (Eze 37:4)

8. What happened to king Belshazzer when he saw the fingers of a man’s hand write a message on the wall? (Da 5:6)

9. Who did Hosea say was the empty vine that only brought forth fruit to himself? (Ho 10:1)

10. Where was Paul residing when the Philippian brethren sent once and again to his necessity? (Php 4:16)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a still small voice.

2. Shall mortal man be more just than God? Shall a man be more pure than his maker?

3. Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.

4. Have I committed an offence in abasing myself that ye might be exalted, because I have preached to you the gospel of God freely?

******

******

**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I Kings  (1Ki 19:12)
2. Job  (Job 4:17)
3. Romans  (Ro 12:17)
4. II Corinthians  (2Co 11:7)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (April 2012)

1. Who was the father of the man that had six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot? (2Sa 21:19-20)

2. Why did not David give Abishai permission to slay Saul when they found him sleeping? (1Sa 26:8-9)

3. Why did the people building the city and tower of Babel leave off building the city? (Ge 11:8)

4. What was the one thing about Absalom that caused him to be praised above all in Israel? (2Sa 14:25)

5. What did Absalom have done to Joab so that he would finally come and see him as he had thus far refused to come? (2Sa 14:30)

6. What are we to do with Ephraim who is joined to his idols? (Ho 4:17)

7. About how many people were in Nineveh that could not discern between their right hand and left hand? (Jon 4:11)

8. Jesus came and dwelt in the city of Nazareth that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophets. What was spoken? (Mt 2:23)

9. God is faithful to keep covenant and mercy with them that love him to a thousand generations, but what will He do to those that hate Him? (De 7:9-10)

10. Regarding tongues, Paul said if he knew not the meaning or language of the voice, he would be unto him that spaketh a what and he that spoke would be unto him a what? (1Co 14:11)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.

2. But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.

3. And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance forever.

********

**********
ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Ephesians  (Eph 4:7)
2. Hebrews  (Heb 13:16)
3. Isaiah  (Isa 32:17)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (May 2012)

1. The Lord would send desolation on the land of the house of Israel, and even if what 3 righteous men were in it, they would only deliver their own souls? (Eze 14:14)

2. What did Josiah, king of Judah do when he heard the words of the book of the law read in his presence? (2Ki 22:11)

3. Why was king Josiah gathered unto his grave in peace at a relatively early age? (2Ki 22:20)

4. After Gideon’s great victory over Midian, Israel asked him to rule over them; Gideon refused but who did he say would rule? (Jg 8:23)

5. How did Eli react when Samuel told him of the Lord’s judgment against his house because of his failure to restrain his sons? (1Sa 3:18)

6. What should someone do to know whether they are eating the bread or drinking the cup of the Lord’s table in an unworthy way? (1Co 11:28)

7. How did Paul refer to Priscilla and Aquila who for his life had laid down their own necks? (Ro 16:3)

 8.   What word does the apostle Paul and the apostle Peter use to conclude all their books they were inspired to write?

9. What are the last words attributed to Jesus that are recorded in the Bible? (Re 22:20)

10.  What person’s deeds would John remember who prated against him with malicious words and cast certain people out of the church? (3Jo 9-10)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Every man shall give as he is able, according to the blessing of the Lord thy God which he hath given thee.

2. Behold, he putteth no trust in his saints; yea, the heavens are not clean in his sight.

3. Call unto me, and I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.

****

**********


*****
ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Deuteronomy  (De 16:17)
2. Job  (Job 15:15)
3. Jeremiah  (Jer 33:3)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (June 2012)

1. Who was the father of Methuselah who was the oldest man recorded in the Bible? (Ge 5:21)

2. For what specific reason did the Lord give His Sabbaths to Israel? (Eze 20:12)

3. The angel told Joseph to take Mary and Jesus and flee into Egypt and he would remain there until when? (Mt 1:14-15)

4. John the Baptist baptized with water unto repentance, but one mightier than he (Jesus) would baptize with what? (Mt 3:11)

5. What did Jesus say to the devil when he dared Him to cast himself off the pinnacle if He indeed was the Son of God? (Mt 4:7)

6. What kind of assistance did Jesus receive after His temptation in the wilderness by the devil? (Mt 4:11)

7. Who shall be called the least and who shall be called the greatest in the kingdom of heaven? (Mt 5:19)

8. Wives are daughters of what woman when they submit to their husbands, do well, and are not afraid with amazement? (1Pe 3:6)

9. What happened to the raven that Noah first sent forth from the ark? (Ge 8:7)

10. What two things did Abraham give Hagar as he sent her and her child forth from his household? (Ge 21:14)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. See, I have set before thee this day life and good, death and evil.

2. And the Lord said unto him, Peace be unto thee; fear not: thou shalt not die.

3. Go and tell my servant David, Thus saith the Lord, Shalt thou build me an house for me to dwell in?

4. And my people shall dwell in a peaceable habitation, and in sure dwellings, and in quiet resting places.

****

****


ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Deuteronomy  (De 30:15)
2. Judges  (Jg 6:23)
3. II Samuel  (2Sa 7:5)
4. Isaiah  (Isa 32:18)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (July 2012)

1. What do the hypocrites do to themselves to give the appearance that they are fasting? (Mt 6:16)

2. Why did Jesus tell His disciples to anoint their heads and wash their face when they fasted? (Mt 6:17-18)

3. For what reason did Paul feed the church at Corinth with milk instead of meat which they could not bear? (1Co 3:3)

4. What does a man need to do who seems to be wise in the world to truly be wise? (1Co 3:18)

5. John writes in Revelation to the seven churches of Asia and sends greetings of grace and peace from whom? (Re 1:4-5)

6. What two disciples did Jesus send to a large upper room to prepare the Passover Supper? (Lu 22:8)

7. How old was Isaac when he married Rebekah and how old was he when Rebekah gave birth to Jacob and Esau? (Ge 25:20,26)

 8.   Cain dwelt in the land of Nod and built a city named what and after whom? (Ge 4:17)

9. Why did the Jews seek to slay Jesus after He healed the impotent man waiting for the troubling of the water so he could step in? (Joh 5:16)

10. The city of the Ephesians was a worshipper of what goddess and what image? (Ac 19:35)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And labour, working with our own hands: being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it.

2. And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel.

3. Mine eye runneth down with rivers of water for the destruction of the daughter of my people.

 4.   For there is not a just man upon earth, that doeth good, and sinneth not.

5. Hatred stirreth up strifes: but love covereth all sins.


*******

**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I Corinthians  (1Co 4:12)
2. Ephesians  (Eph 6:19)
3. Lamentations  (La 3:48)
4. Ecclesiastes  (Ec 7:20)
5. Proverbs  (Pr 10:12)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (August 2012)

1. What three things does Micah say is required of the man whom God has shown what is good? (Mic 6:8)

2. Habakkuk prays to God to revive His work in the midst of the years and in His wrath to remember what? (Hab 3:2)

3. What had Judah failed to do to cause God to blow on their deeds so they came to nought in the days of Zerubbabel? (Hag 1:4,9)

4. According to Zechariah, what would happen when God’s sword awoke and smote the shepherd? (Zec 13:7)

5. What did the Lord do in response to those that feared the Lord and spoke often one to another? (Zec 3:10)

6.   After Sisera was defeated by Deborah and Barak he fled into the tent of Jael and what did she do to Sisera? (Jg 4:17,21)

7.   Why did David pretend to be mad before the king of Gath as he scribbled on doors and let spittle fall down on his beard? (1Sa 21:12-13)

8. Why did David not kill Saul as his men urged when he had opportunity in the cave? (1Sa 24:10)

 9.   What question did Jeroboam need answered that caused him to send his wife in disguise to the prophet Ahijah? (1Ki 14:1-3)

10. Why did a great host of Syrians flee the city of Samaria so that when the four leprous men did enter the city it was empty? (2Ki 7:6-7)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Behold, I have given him for a witness to the people, a leader and commander to the people.

2. Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions.

3. Of whom we have many things to say, and hard to be uttered, seeing ye are dull of hearing.

*******


****

**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE
ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Isaiah  (Isa 55:4)
2. Ecclesiastes  (Ec 7:29)
3. Hebrews  (Heb 5:11)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (September 2012)

1. Who told Pilate to have nothing to do with Jesus because of things suffered in a dream because of him? (Mt 27:19)

2. Unto what kind of people does the Sun of righteousness arise with healing in his wings? (Mal 4:2)

3. Whose mountains and heritage did the Lord lay waste for the dragons of the wilderness? (Mal 1:3)

4. What kind of people use vain repetitions and think they shall be heard for their much speaking? (Mt 6:7)

5. What two things are summarized by “all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you do ye even so to them?” (Mt 7:12)

6. Where was Jesus sitting when Peter, James and John asked him privately what would be the sign that every stone of the temple would be thrown down? (Mr 13:5)

7. What two men were appointed by the disciples to consider to replace Judas as one of the apostles? (Ac 1:23-25)

8. Who told the Israelites that God would raise up a prophet unto them of their brethren like him and him they would hear? (Ac 7:37)

9. What was the main reason Paul abode with Acquila and Priscilla when he came to Corinth? (Ac 18:3)

10. What is the condition of an individual who believes he must be circumcised and keep the law? (Ga 5:3)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. David therefore himself calleth him Lord; and whence is he then his son? And the common people heard him gladly.

2. For if the trumpet give an uncertain sound, who shall prepare himself to the battle?

3. The way of the just is uprightness: thou, most upright, dost weigh the path of the just.

******


******


**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Mark  (Mr 12:37)
2. I Corinthians  (1Co 14:8)
3. Isaiah  (Isa 26:7)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (October 2012)

1. Jesus said John the Baptist was clothed in soft raiment and those wearing soft clothing reside where? (Mt 11:8)

2. Why did Herod not originally put John the Baptist to death? (Mt 14:5)

3. Jesus and Peter walked on the water and Jesus rescued Peter when he saw the wind but when did the wind cease blowing? (Mt 14:32)

 4.   Why does that which enters into the mouth not defile a man but that which goes out does defile? (Mt 15:17-18)

5. What was the purpose of the Canaanite woman coming to Jesus and crying for mercy? (Mt 15:22)

6. What is the goal of the scribes and Pharisees that sit in Moses’ seat in doing all their works? (Mt 23:5)

7. What reason did the chief priests give for not taking the 30 pieces of silver they gave Judas and put it into the treasury? (Mt 27:6)

8. What did the guards on watch at the tomb of Jesus see that caused them to shake and become as dead men? (Mt 28:2-3)

9. What did the Lord tell Samuel to take with him when he went to anoint David, the son of Jesse, to replace Saul? (1Sa 16:2)

10. Where was Jesus going when the woman with the issue of blood came and touched his garment? (Mr 5:23-25)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And she said to the king, It was a true report that I heard in mine own land of thy acts and of thy wisdom.

2. Yet man is born unto trouble, as the sparks fly upward.

3. But thou, Israel, art my servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham my friend.

4. Rejoice with them that do rejoice, and weep with them that do weep.


*****


*****

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1.   I Kings  (1Ki 10:6)
2. Job  (Job 5:7)
3. Isaiah  (Isa 41:8)
4. Romans  (Ro 12:15)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (November 2012)

1. When Jesus sent out the twelve apostles, he told them not to take anything for their journey except what? (Mr 6:8)

2. It is easier for heaven and earth to pass than what part of the law to fail? (Lu 16:17)

3. What did the apostles reply when Jesus told them to forgive a brother who trespassed 7 times in a day and 7 times repented? (Lu 17:4-5)

4. What foods did the apostles give Jesus as He appeared to them after His resurrection? (Lu 24:42)

5. How did the Jews react who claimed Abraham as their father when he said, “Before Abraham was I am”? (Joh 8:58-59)

6. Why does an hireling, not the shepherd, flee when he sees the wolf coming? (Joh 10:13)

7. Why did the chief priests conspire to put Lazarus to death, along with Jesus, after Jesus had raised him from the dead? (Joh 12:10-11)

8. What did the soldiers say to Jesus after putting on Him the crown of thorns and purple robe? (Joh 19:2-3)

9. What term does Isaiah use to tell of one who will stand for an ensign of the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and his rest shall be glorious? (Isa 11:10)

10. Who does Isaiah say is the son of the morning and has said “I will ascend above the heights of the clouds and be like the most High? (Isa 14:12-14)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Thine eyes shall see the king in his beauty: they shall behold the land that is very far off.

2. It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.

3. O Israel, return unto the Lord thy God; for thou hast fallen by thine iniquity.

 4.  As he spake these words, many believed on him.

*****

****


**********
ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Isaiah  (Isa 33:17)
2. Lamentations  (La 3:22)
3. Hosea  (Ho 14:1)
4. John  (Joh 8:30)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (December 2012)

1. What time of day was it when Elijah began to mock the prophets of Baal?  (1Ki 18:27)

2. What was the name of the temple where the lame man was laid to beg alms and was healed by Peter?  (Ac 3:2)

3. Who made known to King Belshazzer that there was a man in his kingdom who could interpret the writing he saw on the wall?  (Da 5:10-11)

4. Who did Cornelius send to Joppa to inquire of Peter in the house of Simon, the tanner? (Ac 10:6-7)

5. Who did Barnabas seek, find and bring to Antioch where they taught a year with the church?  (Ac 11:25-26)

6. How long did Baal’s prophets call on his name to come and consume the sacrificial bullock? (1Ki 18:26)

7. What two things did the Lord look through to see the host of Egyptians that pursued Israel in the Red Sea?  (Ex 14:24)

8. When Paul was brought before Felix as the governor, what was the name of the man who gave the charge against him? (Ac 24:1-2)

9. When Paul was before Festus, who did he make his appeal to concerning charges labeled against him?  (Ac 25:11)

10. What language did Jesus use to speak to Saul on the road to Damascus and said, “Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me”?  (Ac 26:14)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Let us therefore follow after the things which make for peace, and things wherewith one may edify another.

2. For some are already turned aside after Satan.

 3.   Now the just shall live by faith: but if any man draw  back, my soul shall have no pleasure in him.

4. Is it time for you, O ye, to dwell in your ceiled houses, and this house lie waste?


****


****

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK  OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Romans  (Ro 14:19)
2. I Timothy  (1Ti 5:15)
3. Hebrews  (Heb 10:38)
4. Haggai  (Hag 1:4)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (January 2013)

1. What woman did Paul commend as a servant of the church at Cenchrea unto the church at Rome? (Ro 16:1-2)

2. Those that cause divisions contrary to good doctrine serve not Jesus Christ but serve what? (Ro 16:17-18)

3. Husbands and wives are not to defraud one another except by consent for a time that they may give themselves to what?  (1Co 7:5)

4. Paul says the married woman careth for the things of the world that she may please who? (1Co 7:34)

5. What happens to God’s people when He judges them in their lives?  (1Co 11:32)

6. How long a time did Moses parents hide him being not afraid of the king’s decree to slay all the Hebrew male newborn?  (Heb 11:23)

7. What determines the end of Satan’s ministers who may be transformed as the ministers of righteousness?  (2Co 11:15)

8. In what mount did Solomon begin to build the house of the Lord in Jerusalem?  (2Ch 3:1)

9. What did Paul think he might display toward the Church at Corinth if he were present rather than through a letter?  (2Co 13:10)

10. What would happen to the apostle Paul if he strived to please men rather than God? (Ga 1:10)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. For if I build again the things which I destroyed I make myself a transgressor? 

2. For if they which are of the law be heirs, faith is made void, and the promise made of none effect.

3. Sing and rejoice, O daughter of Zion: for, lo, I come, and I will dwell in the midst of thee, saith the Lord.

4. For this our heart is faint; for these things our eyes are dim.

*****


****

********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Galatians  (Ga 2:18)
2. Romans  (Ro 4:14)
3. Zechariah  (Zec 2:10)
4. Lamentations  (La 5:17)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (February 2013)

1. What was the first part of the tabernacle without the veil called that had the candlestick, table, and shewbread? (Heb 9:2)

2. What was the part of the tabernacle after the second veil called that had the golden senser, ark of the covenant, and Aaron’s rod? (Heb 9:3)

3. God chastens His people for their profit that they might be partakers of what? (Heb 12:10)

4. Who does James address to know that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? (Jas 4:4)

 5.   We should not swear by heaven, by earth, neither any other oath but just do what? (Jas 5:12)

6. What is more precious than that of gold that perisheth though it be tried with fire? (1Pe 1:7)

 7.   Why does John desire not to write with paper and ink but to see the elect lady and her children face to face? (2Jo 12)

 8.  What was the golden vial of odours which the four beasts and twenty-four elders had as they were before the Lamb? (Re 5:8)

 9.  What was the name of the star John saw fall from heaven when the third angel sounded in the eighth chapter of Re 8:10-11?

10. What did the angel have in his right hand when he set his right foot on the sea and left foot on the earth? (Re 10:2)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. For this is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of the Lord.

 2.   Did not he that made me in the womb make him? and did not one fashion us in the womb?

3. But I have chosen Jerusalem, that my name might be there; and have chosen David to be over my people Israel.

4. And if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know.

*******

********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Isaiah  (Isa 30:9)
2. Job  (Job 31:15)
3. II Chronicles  (2Ch 6:6)
4. I Corinthians  (1Co 8:2)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (March 2013)

1. What is it called when death and hell are finally cast into the lake of fire? (Re 20:14)

2. In the city that lieth foursquare, why did it have no need of the sun or moon? (Re 21:23)

3. Why was Adam afraid when he heard the voice of the Lord God walking in the cool of the day? (Ge 3:10)

4. How long were the flood waters upon the earth after forty days and nights of rain in Noah’s day? (Ge 7:24)

 5.   What did the dove that Noah sent out the second time have in her mouth when she returned? (Ge 8:11)

6. Where was Abram going when he told his wife, Sarai, to say she was his sister? (Ge 12:11-13)

7. Whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of what? (Mt 5:22)

 8.   How old was Abraham when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin? (Ge 17:24)

9. How much did Abraham pay Ephron for the field of Machpelah to bury his wife Sarah and his dead? (Ge 23:15,17)

10. How old was Abraham when he gave up the ghost and gathered unto his people? (Ge 25:7)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. There is no darkness, nor shadow of death, where the workers of iniquity may hide themselves.

2. Behold the Lord God will come with strong hand and his arm shall rule for him: behold, his reward is with him, and his work before him.

3. I will sacrifice unto thee with the voice of thanks giving; I will pay that that I have vowed, salvation is of the Lord.

4. But Jerusalem which is from above is free, which is the mother of us all.

5. For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.


*****

********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Job  (Job 34:22)
2. Isaiah  (Isa 40:10)
3. Jonah  (Jon 2:9)
4. Galatians  (Ga 4:26)
5. Philippians  (Php 1:21)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (April 2013)

1. Who were the two sons born to Joseph while he was in Egypt before Jacob came to him? (Ge 48:5)

2. From which son of Joseph did the mighty hands of God make strong and from whom is the shepherd, the stone of Israel? (Ge 49:22-24)

3. Who was that Elias that Jesus told the disciples should first come and had come to restore all things? (Mt 17:11-13)

4. What was the one plague on Pharaoh and Egypt by Moses’ and Aaron’s rod that his magicians could not duplicate? (Ex 8:18)

5. Who was to make Aaron’s holy garments used to consecrate him to minister in the priest’s office? (Ex 28:3)

6. What happened to those who failed to come to Moses as those who were on the Lord’s side after Aaron made the molten calf? (Ex 32:26-28)

7. What happened in the presence of Jesus when the multitude were amazed and glorified God saying, “we never saw it on this fashion?” (Mr 2:11-12)

8. How many swine ran off the steep cliff, drowning themselves in the sea after the devils from the Gadarene entered them? (Mr 5:13)

9. After proper examination, who could pronounce an individual to be unclean and a leper? (Le 13:8)

10. Who were the only ones allowed to set up the tabernacle and take it down as the Israelites journeyed in the wilderness? (Nu 1:51)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you.

2. That I may come unto you with joy by the will of God, and may with you be refreshed.

3. And I said my strength and hope is perished from the Lord.

4. But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.

********


*********


ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Acts  (Ac 3:14)
2. Romans  (Ro 15:32)
3. Lamentations  (La 3:18)
4. I Corinthians  (1Co 6:17)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (May 2013)

1. At what age did a Levite cease to wait upon the service of the tabernacle of the congregation? (Nu 28:25)

2. What outward act of dismay did Joshua and Caleb do when they heard the bad report of the other 10 spies of Canaan land? (Nu 14:6)

3. What happened to those ten men who brought back an evil report of Canaan land? (Nu 14:37)

4. What was Jesus doing in the mountain when He was transfigured and talked with Moses and Elias?  (Lu 9:29-30)

5. Where were the disciples continually praising and blessing God after they saw Him depart into heaven?  (Lu 24:53)

6. Where had the disciples gone when Jesus did encounter the woman of Samaria at Jacob’s well?  (Joh 4:6)

7. Moses took ashes from the furnace which turned to dust, and the dust turned into what on man and beast in Egypt?  (Ex 9:9)

8. Jesus did not have to accuse the unbelieving Jews to the Father as they had one that had already accused; who was it?  (Joh 5:45)

9. How did Joshua deal with the king of the city of Ai after he was captured alive? (Jos 8:29)

10.  Jesus told the Pharisees that if He cast out devils by the Spirit of God rather than by Beelzebub then what had come to them?  (Mt 12:28)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near.

2. What is the Almighty, that we should serve him? and what profit should we have, if we pray unto him?

3. In that day shall the fair virgins and young men faint for thirst.

4. Unto him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end. Amen.

******

****

*********
ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Isaiah  (Isa 55:6)
2. Job  (Job 21:15)
3. Amos  (Am 8:13)
4. Ephesians  (Eph 3:21)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (June 2013)

1. What was the last thing Zedekiah of Judah saw before king Nebuchadnezzar put out his eyes? (Jer 39:6-7)

2. Who washed the feet of the servants of David that he had sent to Carmel to the house of Nabal?  (1Sa 25:41)

3. Why did Gideon do by night instead of day the angel’s bidding in taking down his father’s altar and build an altar to the Lord? (Jg 6:26-27)

4. Who did Mary think Jesus was as she saw Him standing outside the sepulchre where He was laid?  (Joh 20:15)

5. Why did Hannah name the child Samuel that she had prayed to the Lord to give her because she was barren?  (1Sa 1:20)

6. The Lord visited Hannah after she had Samuel and she had how many more children? (1Sa 2:21)

7. What happened to the demeanor of Philistines when they heard the Israelites shout when the ark of the covenant came into the camp? (1Sa 4:7)

8. Paul and Barnabas taught the church at Antioch an entire year and what happened there to the name of the disciples? (Ac 11:26)

9. What did Herod command regarding the soldiers who were guarding Peter in prison before being delivered by God’s angel?  (Ac 12:19)

10. What did Paul do to Elymas, the sorcerer, who sought to turn away the deputy, Sergius Paulius, from the faith?  (Ac 13:11)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And the disciples were filled with joy, and with the Holy Ghost.

2. My people, go ye out of the midst of her, and deliver ye every man his soul  from the fierce anger of the Lord.

3. In whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the breath of all mankind.


****


**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Acts  (Ac 13:52)
2. Jeremiah  (Jer 51:45)
3. Job  (Job 12:10)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (July 2013)

1. Into whose house did Paul and Silas enter after singing and praying at midnight in prison and then delivered out? (Ac 16:40)

2. Paul and Silas went to Berea from Thessalonica and found the Bereans to be more noble than the Thessalonians. Why? (Ac 17:10-11)

3. For what reason did Samuel tell Jesse that he had come to him? (1Sa 16:5)

4. What did David do before king Saul when he was troubled with an evil spirit from the Lord? (1Sa 16:23)

5. Who saw Ahimelech, the priest, give David the hallowed bread and Goliath’s sword and later told Saul? (1Sa 21:6-9)

6. What did David do to Saul while he was in a cave that later caused him to feel guilty about what he had done? (1Sa 24:4-5)

7. Why was David able to take Saul’s spear and a cruse of water from him as he spent the night in a trench? (1Sa 26:12)

8. Jesus was betrayed by Judas for thirty pieces of silver and Joseph was sold for how many pieces of silver? (Ge 37:35)

9. The Philistines stopped up the wells after the death of Abraham but who dug them up again? (Ge 26:18)

10. Who said, “It is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not?” (Joh 11:50)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And now I have told you before it come to pass that, when it is come to pass, ye might believe.

2. Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from his fierce anger, that we perish not?

3. Of such an one will I glory: yet of myself I will not glory, but in mine infirmities.

4. And thou hast removed, my soul far off from peace: I forgat prosperity.

******


*******
**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. John  (Joh 14:29)
2. Jonah  (Jon 3:9)
3. II Corinthians  (2Co 12:5)
4. Lamentations  (La 3:17)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (August 2013)

1. Who was the chief man of the island of Melita where Paul and the prisoners escaped after his ship wreck? (Ac 28:7)

2. Elijah drank of the brook Cherith as God had commanded; then the brook dried up. Why did it dry up? (1Ki 17:7)

3. David sent servants to comfort Hanun at the death of his father, king of Ammon. How did Hanun’s princes treat David’s servants? (2Sa 10:4)

4. Who delivered the letter to Joab to have Uriah, husband of Bathsheba, sent to the heat of the battle to be slain? (2Sa 11:14-15)

5. What did Jonadab tell Absalom to do to bring his sister, Tamar, to him for ungodly intentions? (2Sa 13:5)

6. How did Absalom steal the hearts of the men of Israel from David? (2Sa 15:5-6)

7. Why would not David drink of the water of the well of Bethlehem that he desired so much after it was brought to him? (2Sa 23:16-17)

8. Where did Adonijah take shelter from Solomon as he tried to reign himself in place of Solomon? (1Ki 1:51-53)

9. Who did God set forth as if appointed to death and make a spectacle unto the world, angels, and men? (1Co 4:9)

10. What was Elisha doing when Elijah found him and cast his mantle upon him? (1Ki 19:19)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And through thy knowledge shall the weak brother perish, for whom Christ died?

2. And if a man also strive for masteries, yet is he not crowned, except he strive lawfully.

3. Shall the prey be taken from the mighty, or the lawful captive delivered?

4. Yet ye have forsaken me, and served other gods: wherefore I will deliver you no more.


*****

**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE
ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I Corinthians  (1Co 8:11)
2. II Timothy  (2Ti 2:5)
3. Isaiah  (Isa 49:24)
4. Judges  (Jg 10:13)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (September 2013)

1. How did the Lord deliver king Hezekiah and Judah from the massive army of Sennacherib, king of Assyria? (2Ki 19:35)

2. What did Saul’s armour-bearer do after he saw Saul was dead from his own sword? (1Ch 10:5)
 
3. What did the Philistines do with the head of Saul and his armour? (1Ch 10:9-10)

4. What is the reason husband and wife are allowed only to defraud (keep back) from one another with consent for a specified time? (1Co 7:5)

5. By what means did Jesus, being made better than the angels, obtain a more excellent name than those angels? (Heb 1:4)

6. What happened to Israel when David chose to fall into the Lord’s hand for his sin in the numbering of Israel? (1Ch 21:13-14)

7. We are told to grieve not the holy Spirit of God whereby we are sealed until when? (Eph 4:30)

8. Paul has fond remembrance of Philippian saints and what request does he always make to God in his prayers concerning them? (Php 1:4-5)

9. Paul desired to depart and be with Christ which was far better but for what purpose does he believe he will abide longer in the flesh? (Php 1:25)

10. What do we know that we shall receive if we do things heartily as to the Lord and not unto men? (Col 3:23-24)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Canst thou by searching find out God? Canst thou find out the Almighty unto perfection?

2. He that diggeth a pit shall fall into it; and whoso breaketh an hedge, a serpent shall bite him.

3. Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith the Lord. Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the Lord.

4. And there was great joy in that city.

****

**********
ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Job  (Job 11:7)
2. Ecclesiastes  (Ec 10:8)
3. Jeremiah  (Jer 23:24)
4. Acts  (Ac 8:8)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (October 2013)

1. Why did Ahab hate Micaiah the prophet and make him not want to inquire of him as desired by Jehoshaphat? (2Ch 18:7)

2. Why did not God lead Israel through the land of the Philistines after Pharaoh let them go? (Ex 13:17)

3. Why did king Jehoshaphat give his kingdom to his son Jehoram and not to any other of his sons? (2Ch 21:3)

4. What kind of sickness did God send Jehoram that he died because of his evil ways? (2Ch 21:19)

5. What happened when Elisha smote the waters of Jordan with the mantle which fell from Elijah? (2Ki 2:14)

6. For what purpose did Paul charge Timothy to pray for kings and all that were in authority? (1Ti 2:1-2)

7. What does Paul tell women to adorn themselves with instead of gold, pearls, and costly array? (1Ti 2:9-10)

8. For what purpose did Paul write to Timothy hoping to come unto him shortly? (1Ti 3:14-15)

9. Solomon said that God made man upright but they have sought out many what? (Ec 7:29)

10. What was the young man’s name that fell asleep as Paul was long preaching and was then brought back to life by Paul? (Ac 20:9)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. O Lord, to us belongeth confusion of face, to our kings , to our prince, and to our fathers, because we have sinned against thee.

2. Behold, I have given him for a witness to the people, a leader and commander to the people.

3. If it do evil in my sight, that it obey not my voice, then I will repent of the good, wherewith I said I would benefit them.

4. For I suppose I was not a whit behind the very chiefest apostles.

****

**********
ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Daniel  (Da 9:8)
2. Isaiah  (Isa 55:4)
3. Jeremiah  (Jer 18:10)
4. II Corinthians  (2Co 11:5)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (November 2013)

 1.   Who stood upon a pulpit of wood and opened the book of the law before the people and blessed God? (Ne 8:5)

2. Why was it written in the book of Moses that the Ammonite and Moabite should not come into the congregation of God forever? (Ne 13:1-2)

3. What was found written in the book of records of Chronicles that king Ahasuerus ordered read concerning Mordecai? (Es 6:1-2)

4. How was the writing of king Ahasuerus and other kings sealed concerning the restoration of the Jews? (Es 8:8)

5. What did Esther request to be done with the ten sons of Haman? (Es 9:13)

6. If any man suffers as a Christian, he is not to be ashamed but is to do what? (1Pe 4:16)

7. What is the vineyard that God fenced in and planted with the choicest vine and took out the stones? (Isa 5:7)

8. What is the result of someone who is able to convert a sinner from the error of his way? (Jas 5:19-20)

9. According to the Bible what is true wisdom and understanding? (Job 28:28)

10. Who is it that lives, becomes old and are mighty in power, whose houses are safe from fear and the rod of God isn’t upon them? (Job 21:7,9)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I also could speak as ye do: if your soul were in my soul’s stead, I could heap up words against you, and shake mine head at you.

2. Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways; now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.

3. Paul said to the centurion and to the soldiers, except  these abide in the ship, ye cannot be saved?

4. But he that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.

****


*********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Job  (Job 16:4)
2. I Samuel  (1Sa 8:5)
3. Acts  (Ac 27:31)
4. I Corinthians  (1Co 6:17)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (December 2013)

1. What did Jeremiah see the second time the Lord asked him the question, “What seest thou?” (Jer 1:13)

2. For what purpose did the Lord tell Jeremiah to get a potter’s earthen bottle and break it in the sight of the ancients of the people? (Jer 19:10-11)

3. John saw the holy city that lieth foursquare with twelve foundations of walls in whose walls were the names of whom? (Re 21:14)

4. If one can break the Lord’s covenant of the day and night so there would not be day or night then, what else could break? (Jer 33:20-21)

5. The Manna that God sent Israel was like the coriander seed and white but what did it taste like? (Ex 16:31)

6. What king of Judah had his sons slain, eyes put out, and bound with chains and carried captive to Babylon? (Jer 39:6-7)

7. What did Jacob do the first time he saw Rachel as she came to water her father’s sheep? (Ge 29:11)

8. Why did Moses flee from the face of Pharaoh and dwell in the land of Midian? (Ex 2:12-15)

9. What was wrong with Moses’ sister, Miriam, when he cried unto the Lord to heal her? (Nu 12:10,13)

10. Why would the Lord drive out the nations of Canaan before Israel little by little rather than all at once? (De 7:22) (Ex 23:29)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. For the Lord your God is he that goeth with you, to fight for you against your enemies, to save you.

2. And also the strength of Israel will not lie nor repent : for he is not a man, that he should repent.

3. For who hath known the mind of the Lord? Or who  hath been his counselor?


*****

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Deuteronomy  (De 20:4)
2. I Samuel  (1Sa 15:29)
3. Romans  (Ro 11:34)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (January 2014)

1. What was Amos doing before the Lord told him to prophecy unto His people, Israel? (Am 7:14)

2. Why was Jonah sitting in the shadow of a booth he had made on the east side of the city of Nineveh? (Jon 4:5)

3. God set bounds round Mt. Sinai and what would happen to anyone who violated the bounds and touched the Mt.? (Ex 19:12-13)

4. When the trumpet of alarm was sounded, what section of the camp of Israel was to go first? (Nu 10:5)

5. The priests that bare the ark in Jordan stood in the midst of Jordan’s waters until what transpired? (Jos 4:10)

6. What did Joshua do on the seventh day of circling Jericho that he hadn’t done before when the priests blew trumpets? (Jos 6:14)

7. What three things did Gideon put into the hands of the 300 that went against the Midianites?  (Jg 7:16)

8. What did the Lord set over His people who said for them to hearken to the sound of the trumpet? (Jer 6:17)

9. How had Israel wearied the Lord according to the prophet Malachi? (Mal 2:17)

10. What is able to save the soul when received as all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness is laid aside? (Jas 1:21)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. But ye have despised the poor. Do not rich men oppress you, and draw you before the judgment seat?

2. Greatly desiring to see thee, being mindful of thy tears, that I may be filled with joy.

3. The crown is fallen from our head: woe unto us, that we have sinned!

4. There is no peace, saith the Lord, to the wicked.

****

**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE
ARE THESE VERSES?

1. James  (Jas 2:6)
2. II Timothy  (2Ti 1:4)
3. Lamentations  (La 5:16)
4. Isaiah  (Isa 48:22)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (February 2014)

1. Man began to call upon the name of the Lord after the birth of what man? (Ge 4:26)

2. What was Cain’s answer when the Lord asked him, “Where is Abel thy brother?” (Ge 4:9)

3. Why did Hagar come to dwell by a fountain of water in the wilderness where the angel of the Lord found her? (Ge 16:6-7)

4. Who did God remember when He sent Lot out before destroying the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah? (Ge 19:29)

5. What man besides Abraham told a king that his wife was really his sister? (Ge 26:6-7)

6. What did God do to the household of Abimelech because of Abraham’s wife Sarah? (Ge 20:18)

7. When God remembered Rachel and opened up her barren womb, who was the son she brought forth? (Ge 30:22-24)

8. There was a Jewish generation that saw John the Baptist come neither eating or drinking and they called him a what? (Mt 11:18)

9. When Jesus Christ, the Son of man, came eating and drinking, what did those Jews call Him? (Mt 11:19)

10. The townclerk of the city of Ephesus cried that there was not a man present that knew not that this city was a worshipper of who? (Ac 19:35)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And they brought forth the young man alive, and were not a little comforted.

2. Seeing that many glory after the flesh, I will glory also. For ye suffer fools gladly, seeing ye your selves are wise.

3. I will also leave in the midst of thee an afflicted and poor people, and they shall trust in the name of the Lord.

4. In that day shall the fair virgins and the young men faint for thirst.


**********

*********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Acts  (Ac 20:12)
2. II Corinthians  (2Co 11:18-19)
3. Zephaniah  (Zep 3:12)
4. Amos  (Am 8:13)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (March 2014)

1. What did Laban discover his daughter, Rachel, had done when he went to shear his sheep? (Ge 31:19)

2. When Jacob met Esau, he prayed him to take presents for he had seen Esau’s face as though he had seen what? (Ge 33:10)

3. Why did the two sons of Jacob, Simeon and Levi, kill all the circumcised males of the city of Hamor and Shechem? (Ge 34:25-27)

4. What did Jacob tell his household to do after God told him to arise and go to Bethel where God had appeared to him? (Ge 35:2)

5. What brother of Joseph proposed to the rest that they not slay Joseph but sell him to the Ishmeelites? (Ge 37:26)

6. What special occasion did Pharaoh make a feast and lifted up the heads of the butler and the baker in prison with Joseph? (Ge 40:20)

7. What did Pharaoh do with the ring on his hand when he made Joseph ruler over the land of Egypt? (Ge 41:42)

8. Why did Jacob not want to send Benjamin with his other sons back to Egypt during the famine? (Ge 42:4)

9. How many men did Jesus feed with seven loaves and a few fishes? (Mt 15:38)

10. Jesus told the disciples to beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees so what was the leaven? (Mt 16:6,12)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Can that which is unsavoury be eaten without salt or is there any taste in the white of an egg?

2. For the Lord of hosts hath purposed, and who shall disannul it? And his hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back?

3. For Israel slideth back as a backsliding heifer: now the Lord will feed them as a lamb in a large place.

4. For every man shall bear his own burden.


********

**********
ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Job  (Job 6:6)
2. Isaiah  (Isa 14:27)
3. Hosea  (Ho 4:16)
4. Galatians  (Ga 6:5)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (April 2014)

1. God told Moses that they could not touch the mount but could approach at a certain time when what happened? (Ex 19:13)

2. What was the glory of the Lord like on top of Mount Sinai in the eyes of the children of Israel? (Ex 24:17)

3. What did Moses do with the molten calf that Aaron fashioned for the children of Israel? (Ex 32:20)

4. Upon what mount were the disciples standing when they saw Jesus ascend into heaven? (Ac 1:11-12)

5. What happened when Peter and John prayed for boldness to speak after they were threatened by the Jewish council? (Ac 4:31)

6. Why did it take 2 turtle doves or 2 pigeons as a trespass offering when one was unable to bring a lamb? (Le 5:7)

7. Who did Paul fasten his eyes on and call him a man full of all subtilty and mischief and child of the devil? (Ac 13:8-10)

8. Who did Paul take and who did Barnabas take to accompany each when they visited some places where they had before preached? (Ac 15:39-40)

9. How did the children of Israel know when to start their journey or stay and for how long as they went through the wilderness? (Nu 9:18-20)

10. For what purpose did the Lord tell Moses to make two trumpets of silver? (Nu 10:2)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And he took away the sodomites out of the land, and removed all the idols that his fathers had made.

2. My transgression is sealed up in a bag, and thou sewest up mine iniquity.

3. Truly the light is sweet, and a pleasant thing it is for the eyes to behold the sun.

4. And ye are Christ’s; and Christ is God’s.


*****


ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I Kings  (1Ki 15:12)
2. Job  (Job 14:17)
3. Ecclesiastes  (Ec 11:7)
4. I Corinthians  (1Co 3:23)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (May 2014)

1. When the Israelites complained of no flesh to eat, how long did the Lord say they would eat flesh? (Nu 11:19-20)

2. Where did God command Moses to put the two tables of stone God wrote the second time? (De 10:2)

3. What was the name of the mount for a blessing and the mount for a curse after Israel entered the land of Canaan? (De 11:29)

4. What did the two men spies tell Rahab to put in her window when they came to Jericho? (Jos 2:18)

5. What would free the two men from the oath they had sworn to Rahab? (Jos 2:20)

6. What happened immediately after Jesus finished His prayer in Gethsemane and told His disciples “rise and let us go”? (Mr 14:41-43)

7. One of the thieves on the cross beside Jesus was Barabbas; for what reason was he being crucified? (Mr 15:7)

8. What did the Lord use to slay the Amorites that were more than Israel slew with the edge of the sword? (Jos 10:11)

9. Who was the prophetess that judged Israel after the death of Ehud and Shamgar? (Jg 4:4)

10. Who did Samuel anoint with a vial of oil, kissed him and tell that the Lord hath anointed him to be captain over his inheritance? (1Sa 10:1)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Then he is gracious unto him, and saith, Deliver him from going down to the pit: I have found a ransom.

2. After whom is the king of Israel come out? After whom dost thou pursue? After a dead dog, after a flea.

3. After two days will he revive us: in the third day he will raise us up, and we shall live in his sight.

4. But the Lord is faithful, who shall stablish you, And keep you from evil.


****


**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Job  (Job 33:24)
2. I Samuel  (1Sa 24:14)
3. Hosea  (Ho 6:7)
4. II Thessalonians  (2Th 3:3)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (June 2014)

1. What did the children of Israel do after the death of Gideon who delivered them from the hand of the Midianites? (Jg 8:33)

2. How did the angel of God answer Manoah when he asked his name to honor him for the promise of a child? (Jg 13:18)

3. What did Samson first tell Delilah that he might be bound with to secure him? (Jg 16:7)

4. What was Samson’s prayer just before he pulled the house to which he was bound upon himself and the Philistine occupants? (Jg 16:28)

5. For what reason did the dying mother of Ichabod give him that name after birth? (1Sa 4:21-22)

6. What did Samuel name the stone he set up between Mizpeh and Shen after God gave a victory over the Philistines? (1Sa 7:12)

7. What was Samuel called in addition to being called a prophet? (1Sa 9:9,18)

8. What did Jonathan do that Saul said he must die, even though Jonathan was his son? (1Sa 14:43-44)

9. For what reason did Paul tell the church in Corinth to deliver the man committing incest to Satan for destruction of the flesh? (1Co 5:5)

10. What did Saul’s armour-bearer do when he saw Saul dead after being wounded and falling on his own sword? (1Sa 31:5)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Nay, my sons; for it is no good report that I hear: ye make the Lord’s people to transgress.

2. Thou shalt not muzzle the ox when he treadeth out the corn.

3. Men that have hazarded their lives for the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.

4. For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread.

5. Seeing that many glory after the flesh, I will glory also.

*****

*****


ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I Samuel  (1Sa 2:24)
2. Deuteronomy  (De 25:4)
3. Acts  (Ac 15:26)
4. I Corinthians  (1Co 10:17)
5. II Corinthians  (2Co 11:18)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (July 2014)

1. What was the number of stripes that could be lashed on an offender under the law of Moses? (De 25:3)

2. Who was the man who cursed and threw stones at David and called him a man of Belial? (2Sa 16:5-6)

3. What did Joab, David’s captain, do to Amassa when he took him by the beard to give him a kiss? (2Sa 20:9-10)

4. Whose head was thrown over a wall to Joab to prevent a city’s destruction? (2Sa 20:21-22)

5. What did Solomon celebrate by offering 22,000 oxen  and 120,000 sheep as peace offerings to God? (1Ki 8:63)

6. What did Elisha do before he left all and followed Elijah? (1Ki 19:21)

7. Who ordered Jezebel thrown down from a window and trod her under foot? (2Ki 9:31-33)

8. Who was Israel fighting when Aaron and Hur held up Moses’ hand so Israel could prevail in the battle? (Ex 17:10-11)

9. What did Joab name the place in Bethel where he built an altar unto God? (Ge 35:7)

10. What king’s sins filled Jerusalem with innocent blood which God would not pardon and brought punishment on Judah? (2Ki 24:3-4)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Art thou the first man that was born? Or wast thou made before the hills?

2. Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped.

3. Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets.

4. As ye know how we exhorted and comforted and charged every one of you, as a father doth his children.

****

**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Job  (Job 15:7)
2. Isaiah  (Isa 35:5)
3. Amos  (Am 3:7)
4. I Thessalonians  (1Th 2:11)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (August 2014)

1. Who was the Lord’s brother who Paul says he saw along with Peter after his Damascus road experience? (Ga 1:19)

2. What did David bring into Obededom’s house that caused God to bless him? (1Ch 13:14)

3. What was Peter told to do with the piece of money he found in the mouth of a fish in the sea? (Mt 17:27)

4. Why could not the priests stand to minister in the dedication of the temple that Solomon had built? (2Ch 5:14)

5. King Asa and the people of Judah covenanted to seek the Lord but what would happen to anyone who would not seek? (2Ch 15:13)

6. What king of Israel was killed with an arrow after he disguised himself in battle? (2Ch 18:29,33)

7. What had to take place before Joseph and Mary brought Jesus to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord? (Lu 2:22)

8. What prophet spake of John the Baptist who would preach in the wilderness? (Lu 3:3-4)

9. Who were the partners of Simon Peter in the fishing business? (Lu 5:10)

10. Where and what was Jesus doing the entire night before He chose the twelve Apostles? (Lu 6:12-13)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. To whom then will ye liken me, or shall I be equal? Saith the Holy One.

2. Even as I please all men in all things, not seeking mine own profit, but the profit of many that they may be saved.

3. Woe to them that are at ease in Zion, and trust in the mountains of Samaria, which are named chief of the nations, to whom the house of Israel came.

4. It is good for a man that he bear the yoke in his youth.

****

***
 


ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Isaiah  (Isa 40:25)
2. I Corinthians  (1Co 10:33)
3. Amos  (Am 6:1)
4. Lamentations  (La 3:27)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (September 2014)

1. Why did Jesus say to call not friends and your kinsman to a dinner but call the poor, maimed, and blind? (Lu 14:12-14)

2. What kind of tree would obey you to be plucked up by the roots and cast into the sea with faith as a grain of mustard seed? (Lu 17:6)

3. What two men who were enemies came to be friends because of the arrest and trial of Jesus Christ? (Lu 23:12)

4. What animal did Tobias say would cause the stone wall of Nehemiah to fall if he walked on it? (Ne 4:3)

5. Who was the queen of the Ethiopians who had put the eunuch in charge of all her treasure? (Ac 8:27)

6. What does Job define as wisdom and then adds to depart from evil is understanding? (Job 28:28)
 
7. Why did Elihu wait until the three friends of Job and Job himself had spoken until he gave his opinion? (Job 32:6)

8. What did the Lord tell Samuel to take with him as he went to anoint the next king of Israel from the sons of Jesse? (1Sa 16:21)

 9.   When the bride found the groom whom she loved she held him and wouldn’t let go until what time? (Song 3:4)

10. What two kind of people did Jesus tell the chief priests and elders would enter the kingdom of God before them? (Mt 21:31)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Then shall they begin to say to the mountains, fall on us; and to the hills, Cover us.

2. And the hand of the Lord was with them: and a great number believed, and turned unto the Lord.

3. For the Lord is our judge, the Lord is our Lawgiver, the Lord is our king; he will save us.

4. They that observe lying vanities forsake their own mercy.


******


**********


**********


**********


**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Luke  (Lu 23:30)
2. Acts  (Ac 11:21)
3. Isaiah  (Isa 33:22)
4. Jonah  (Jon 2:8

BIBLE QUESTIONS (October - November 2014)

1. Except the Lord had left a very small remnant Judah and Jerusalem would have been as what two cities? (Isa 1:9)

2. What is the clothing of the virtuous woman in Pr 31:25 who rejoices in time to come?

3. Why did Paul charge Timothy to avoid foolish and unlearned questions? (2Ti 2:23)

4. How did the Lord deliver Hezekiah and his people from the mighty Assyrian army of Sennacharib? (Isa 37:36)

5. Christ glorified not himself to be made a high priest so who glorified Him? (Heb 5:5)

6. How do children of God exercise their senses to discern both good and evil? (Heb 5:14)

7. How did God confirm His willingness to show the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel? (Heb 6:17)

8. Two disciples following Jesus called Him Rabbi which is interpreted as what? (Joh 1:38)

9. When Jesus turned water into wine, who did the governor of the feast call for when he tasted it? (Joh 2:9)

10. What did Jeremiah do with the words of God he found that was the rejoicing of his heart? (Jer 15:16)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Neither is there any daysman betwixt us, that he might lay his hand on both.

2. For as the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of a fool, this is also vanity.

3. And there shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse and a Branch shall grow out of his roots.

4. Recompense no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.

5. But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.


****

*****

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Job  (Job 9:33)
2. Ecclesiastes  (Ec 7:6)
3. Isaiah  (Isa 11:1)
4. Romans  (Ro 12:17)
5. Ephesians  (Eph 4:7)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (December 2014)

1. Where and what was Jesus doing when they brought to him a woman taken in the very act of adultery? (Joh 8:1-3)

2. Who were the two witnesses that Jesus said bore witness of Himself? ((Joh 8:18)

3. What did Jacob call the place where he took the stone he slept upon and poured oil upon it? (Ge 28:19)

4. Why did Laban not hurt Jacob when he overtook him with his cattle and daughters? (Ge 31:29)

 5.   What did the sons of Jacob require of Hamor and Shechem for them to take each others daughters and live together? (Ge 34:15-16)

6. The twelve sons of Jacob were born to him by how many women? (Ge 35:22-26)

7. How much money did Joseph’s brothers get for him when they sold him to the Ishmeelites? (Ge 37:28)

8. Why did Judah say Tamar, his daughter-in-law, had been more righteous than he, even though he had defiled her? (Ge 38:26)

9. Which brother of Joseph did he bind and keep in prison as the others were sent to get Benjamin? (Ge 42:24)

10. What was Jesus teaching when He said, “How much better is a man better than a sheep?” (Mt 12:11-12)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And the Lord hearkened to Hezekiah, and healed the people.

2. Nevertheless for thy great mercies’ sake thou didst not utterly consume them, nor forsake them; for thou art a gracious and merciful God.

3. Sanctify the Lord of hosts himself; and let him be your fear, and let him be your dread.

4. But his citizens hated him, and sent a message after him, saying, We will not have this man to reign over us.

*****

****


**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. II Chronicles  (2Ch 30:20)
2. Nehemiah  (Ne 9:31)
3. Isaiah  (Isa 8:13)
4. Luke  (Lu 19:13)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (January 2015)

1. What is the least of all seeds but when it is grown becomes a tree for fowls to lodge in? (Mt 13:31-32)

2. Every scribe instructed in the kingdom of heaven is like unto a what that brings out of his treasure both new and old? (Mt 13:52)

3. What had the disciples forgotten to do when Jesus told them to beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees? (Mt 16:5-6)

4. How old was Moses and Aaron when they first spoke unto Pharaoh? (Ex 7:7)

5. How long was the darkness which could be felt over the land of Egypt? (Ex 10:22)

6. What did the children of Israel call that small round thing, small as hoar frost on the ground in the wilderness? (Ex 16:15)

7. Who were the Israelites fighting when Aaron and Hur held up the hands of Moses so that Israel could prevail? (Ex 17:11-12)

8. What were the qualifications of the men that Moses chose as rulers of thousand, hundreds, fifties and tens? (Ex 18:21)

9. How long did the glory of the Lord in the cloud cover Mount Sinai? (Ex 24:16)

10. Where were the two onyx stones placed that bore the twelve names of the children of Israel? (Ex 28:12)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And there were also Sodomites in the land: and they did according to all the abominations of the nations which the Lord cast out before the children of Israel.

2. Now the sons of Eli were the sons of Belial; they knew not the Lord.

3. And the Lord said unto him, Surely I will be with thee, and thou shalt smite the Midianites as one man.

4. I have coveted no man’s silver, or gold, or apparel.

*****

**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I Kings  (1Ki 14:24)
2. I Samuel  (1Sa 2:12)
3. Judges  (Jg 6:16)
4. Acts  (Ac 20:33)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (February 2015)

1. What did Moses pray God would do to him if He would not forgive the sin of Israel in making the molten calf? (Ex 32:32)

2. When Moses came down from Mt. Sinai, what did he not realize about his appearance to the Israelites? (Ex 34:29)

3. What was the moving force that caused Israel to bring the Lord’s offering for the work of the tabernacle of the congregation? (Ex 35:21)

4. What religious persuasion was Nicodemus when he came to Jesus by night? (Joh 3:1)

5. How did Judas address Jesus just before his betrayal of Jesus with a kiss? (Mt 26:40)

6. What purpose did the potter’s field serve that was bought with Judas’ thirty pieces of silver? (Mt 27:7)

7. What did Pilate do when he could not prevent the release of Barabbas instead of Jesus? (Mt 27:24)

8. Soldiers were given large sums of money to do what three days after Jesus was crucified? (Mt 28:13)

9. What did Jesus speak about to the apostles for the forty days before His ascension? (Ac 1:3)

10. What would happen to anyone who altered the decree of king Darius concerning the rebuilding of the house of God? (Ezr 6:11)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee.

2. Lo, this only have I found, that God hath made man upright; but they have sought out many inventions.

3. O Lord, how long shall I cry, and thou will not hear! Even cry out unto thee of violence, and thou wilt not save!

4. For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that.

******


**********
ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Isaiah  (Isa 60:1)
2. Ecclesiastes  (Ec 7:29)
3. Habakkuk  (Hab 1:2)
4. James  (Jas 4:5)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (March 2015)

1. Moses was not able to enter into the tent of the congregation because of what? (Ex 40:35)

2. Whose preaching was instrumental in converting people of Samaria from the sorcery of Simon? (Ac 8:9-12)

 3.   While Peter thought about his vision of beasts on a sheet from heaven, who told him that three men was seeking him? (Ac 10:19)

4. Who brought Saul of Tarsus to the apostles and declared how he had seen the Lord on the road to Damascus? (Ac 9:27)

5. Thou shalt not lie with mankind as with woman kind for it is what? (Le 18:22)

6. When Peter came to Jerusalem after his visit to Cornelius, what did the Jews contend with him about? (Ac 11:2-3)

7. What two men taught the church in Antioch for a year where they were first Christians? (Ac 11:25-26)

8. When Herod gave his great oratory speech to those of Tyre and Sidon, why did the angel of God smite him? (Ac 12:23)

9. Moses was told to take a census of all the tribes of Israel, 20 years old and upward able to go to war except which tribe? (Nu 1:49)

10. What did the congregation of Israel want to do to Joshua  and Caleb as they gave the good spy report of Canaan’s land? (Nu 14:10)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I have said to corruption, Thou art my father: to the worm, Thou art my mother, and my sister.

2. He will swallow up death in victory; and the Lord will wipe away tears from all faces;…

3. For thus saith the Lord to the men of Judah and Jerusalem, Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns.

4. Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.


*****


*****

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Job  (Job 17:14)
2. Isaiah  (Isa 25:8)
3. Jeremiah  (Jer 4:3)
4. Galatians  (Ga 3:7)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (April 2015)

1. What two men who ministered unto Paul did he send to Macedonia while he stayed in Asia for a season? (Ac 19:22)

2. What gave occasion for Paul preaching till midnight  so Eutychus fell asleep, fell from the third loft and died? (Ac 20:7)

3. How long did Paul spend at Ephesus and warn them night and day with tears of grievous wolves to come after he departed? (Ac 20:31)

4. What argument did Moses make to God to keep Him from immediately killing the Israelites for wilderness disobedience? (Nu 14:15-16)

5. What happened to Korah and his company for their rebellion against God? (Nu 16:32-33)

6. What happened to Aaron’s rod among all the other eleven rods in the tabernacle of witness? (Nu 17:8)

7. The Israelite that touched the body of a dead man would be unclean for how many days? (Nu 19:11)

 8.   Why would men of Israel twenty years old and upward who were delivered out of Egypt not see the land of Canaan? Nu 32:11)

9. How many cities of refuge were on the east side of Jordan and the west side? (Nu 35:14)

10. What man taught Saul of Tarsus the perfect manner of the law of the fathers? (Ac 22:3)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith the Lord. Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the Lord.

2. Bring forth the blind people that have eyes, and the deaf that have ears.

3. You only have I known of all the families of the earth: therefore I will punish you for all your iniquities.

4. To the only wise God our Saviour, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and ever. Amen.


***

*****


ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Jeremiah  (Jer 23:24)
2. Isaiah  (Isa 43:8)
3. Amos  (Am 3:2)
4. Jude  (Jude 25)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (May 2015)

1. Secret things belong to God but things revealed belong to God’s children for what purpose? (De 29:29)

2. What was the real reason the Lord drove out the nations of the land of Canaan for the Israelites? (De 9:5)

3. What sign did God give Hezekiah that He would add fifteen years to his life and deliver him and the city from the Assyrians? (Isa 38:7-8)

4. When a woman wore that which pertaineth to a man and men that which pertained to a woman, what was it to the Lord? (De 22:5)

5. Why did the Lord turn the expected curse of Balaam upon Israel into a blessing? (De 23:5)

6. What three things did Jesus say that if divided against itself would not stand? (Mr 3:24-26)

7. When Israel forsook God, what were the names of two of the false gods they served? (Jg 2:13)

8. What was the name of the judge who slew some 600 Philistines with an ox goad? (Jg 3:31)

9. When Sisera, king Jabin’s captain, fled into the tent of Jael, wife of Heber, he asked for a drink of water but what did she give him before she killed him? (Jg 4:19)

10. Why did Abimelech (Gideon’s son) ask his armour bearer to thrust him through with a sword after being hit in the head with a mill stone? (Jg 9:53-54)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Therefore it is come to pass, that as he cried, and they would not hear; so they cried, and I would not hear, saith the Lord of hosts.

2. Hold thy peace at the presence of the Lord God: for the day of the Lord is at hand: for the Lord hath prepared a sacrifice, he hath bid his guests.

3. Moreover I will endeavor that ye may be able after my decease to have these things always in remembrance.

*****

****

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Zechariah  (Zec 7:13)
2. Zephaniah  (Zep 1:7)
3. II Peter  (2Pe 1:15)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (June 2015)

1. What did Samson not realize when he went out and shook himself after having his seven locks of hair cut? (Jg 16:20)

2. Under the law, if someone stole an ox, how much was to be restored? (Ex 22:1)

3. What happened to David upon a day when the Spirit of the Lord came upon him from that day forward? (1Sa 16:13)

4. Saul sent messengers three different times to take and slay David and they all did what before Samuel? (1Sa 19:20-21)

5. Why did Saul slay Ahimelech and 24 other priests by the hand of Doeg, the Edomite? (1Sa 22:17-18)

6. What was Paul’s advice to those who deceived self seeming to be wise in the world? (1Co 3:18)

7. Saul consulted with the witch of Endor after the Lord did not answer him by what three means? (1Sa 28:6)

8. Which doeth better: he that giveth her in marriage or he that giveth her not in marriage? (1Co 7:39)

9. Why did Tamar, David’s daughter, wear a garment of divers colors when she went in to feed Amnon? (2Sa 13:18)

10. What did prevent Joab and his army from the destruction of the city of Abel to catch Sheba who defied David? (2Sa 20:20-22)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. So built we the wall; and all the wall was joined together unto the half thereof: for the people had a mind to work.

2. But there is a spirit in man: and the inspiration of the Almighty giveth them understanding.

3. And she was in bitterness of soul, and prayed unto the Lord, and wept sore.

4. And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men.


******

*****


ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Nehemiah  (Ne 4:6)
2. Job  (Job 32:8)
3. I Samuel  (1Sa 1:10)
4. Colossians  (Col 3:23)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (July 2015)

1. David gave Shimei who had cursed him a house and told him to stay put; why did David ultimately have him slain? (1Ki 2:37-46)

2. What was Elisha doing when Elijah met him and before he followed Elijah? ( 1Ki 19:19)

3. A certain man of the sons of the prophets told his neighbour to smite him and what happened when he refused? (1Ki 20:35-36)

4. How did Elisha deal with the children who did mock him by calling him a bald head? (2Ki 2:23-24)

5. What did Elisha tell his servant Gehazi to place on the dead child of the Shunammite woman? (2Ki 4:31)

6. What man did Joash, king of Israel, weep over and called him “father, chariot of Israel, and horsemen thereof”? (2Ki 13:14)

7. Which is it? Are children to lay up for parents or rather are parents to lay up for the children? (2Co 11:14)

8. Rehoboam, son of Solomon, had 18 wives and 60 concubines and begat how many sons and Daughters? (2Ch 11:21)

9. Although there were many lepers in the days of Elisha, who was the only leper that experienced cleansing? (Lu 4:27)

10. Who were the partners of Simon Peter whom he summoned for help when his ship was full of fish and about to sink? (Lu 5:10)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. But when Jesus perceived their thoughts, he answering said unto them, What reason ye in your hearts?

2. For none of us liveth to himself, and no man dieth to himself.

3. I have blotted out, as a thick cloud, thy transgressions , and, as a cloud, thy sins: return unto me; for I have redeemed thee.

4. Ephraim is joined to his idols; let him alone.


******

****


**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Luke  (Lu 5:22)
2. Romans  (Ro 14:7)
3. Isaiah  (Isa 44:22)
4. Hosea  (Ho 4:17)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (August 2015)

1. When did Jesus say His disciples would fast like John's disciples and the Pharisees? (Lu 5:35)

2. What was the purpose of the chest that king Josiah ordered set without at the gate of the house of the Lord? (2Ch 24:8-11)

3. What king of Judah prepared shields, helmets, bows, and engines to shoot arrows and sling stones from the towers? (2Ch 26:14-15)

4. What king of Judah sacrificed to the gods of Damascus but they were the ruin of him and all Israel? (2Ch 28:23)

5. When king Josiah heard the words of the book of the law read by the priest, what did he do? (2Ch 34:19)

6. When Nehemiah and the people finished the wall of Jerusalem, why were their enemies cast down in their eyes? (Ne 6:16)

7. How did the people respond when the law of God was read distinctly and the sense was given? (Ne 8:9)

8. Where was the kingdom of God that Jesus told the Pharisees the kingdom cometh not with observation? (Lu 17:21)

9. What was the one thing Jesus asked the chief priests and scribes when they inquired by what authority he did great things? (Lu 20:2-4)

10. What did queen Esther command Mordecai and the Jews to do before she went to the king to plead for her fellow Jews? (Es 4:16)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. For thus saith the Lord, Ye have sold yourselves for nought; and ye shall be redeemed without money.

2. Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.

3. Fret not thyself because of evil men, neither be thou envious at the wicked.

4. For God hath not called us unto uncleanness, but unto holiness.


*****

*****

  
ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Isaiah  (Isa 52:3)
2. Romans  (Ro 12:4)
3. Proverbs  (Pr 24:19)
4. I Thessalonians  (1Th 4:7)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (September 2015)

1. Why did the apostle Paul send his fellow labourer and minister of God, Timotheus, to the Thessalonians? (1Th 3:2-3)

2. The hoary head is a crown of life if it is found in what condition? (Pr 16:3)

3. What type of man sayeth there is a lion without and I shall be slain in the streets? (Pr 22:13)

4. What is the vineyard that the Lord fenced in, gathered out the stones, and built a tower within? (Isa 5:2,7)

5. Paul left Titus in Crete to set in order things that were wanting and to do what else? (Tit 1:5)

6. Paul told Titus of men who had subverted whole houses by their teaching for what purpose? (Tit 1:11)

7. For what purpose did Paul want the Colossians to be filled with the knowledge of the will of God? (Col 1:7-8)

8. What faithful minister of Christ declared to Paul the Colossians love in the Spirit? (Col 1:7-8)

9. What man did Paul hope to send to the church in Philippi to learn their state? (Php 1:19)

10. For what purpose did Paul urge Timothy to pray for kings, and for all that were in positions of authority? (1Ti 2:2)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And the Lord make you to increase and abound in love one toward another, and toward all men, even as we do toward you.

2. Sound speech that cannot be condemned; that he that is of the contrary part may be ashamed, having no evil thing to say of you.

3. The righteous also shall hold on his way, and he that hath clean hands shall be stronger and stronger.

4. In whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. And this I say, lest any man should beguile you with enticing words.

**********


**********
**********
ANSWERS--IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. I Thessalonians  (1Th 3:12)
2. Titus  (Tit 2:8)
3. Job  (Job 17:9)
4. Colossians  (Col 2:3-4)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (October 2015)

1. Though what two people stood before the Lord, He would not have a mind of good toward Israel because of gross disobedience. (Jer 15:1)

2. Why had Aquila and Priscilla come from Italy to reside in the city of Corinth where Paul found them? (Ac 18:2)

3. What ordinance would have to depart before God for Him to cause Israel from being a nation before Him for ever? (Jer 31:35-36)

4. What question did the disciples ask Jesus when He passed by and saw a man blind from his birth? (Joh 9:1-2)

5. What was Jesus going to do when He took Peter James and John to the mountain when He was transfigured before them? (Lu 9:28)

6. The Jews led Jesus from Caiaphas unto the hall of judgment to Pilate but did not enter. Why did not they enter? (Joh 18:28)

7. Who did Jesus tell to touch Him not for he was not yet glorified? (Joh 20:17-18)

8. What did Peter do when he found out it was the Lord on the shore after he and the others had fished all night and caught nothing? (Joh 21:7)

9. What three men if they were in the land of Israel could not deliver anyone but themselves from God’s destruction on Israel? (Eze 14:20)

10. What must you do, according to the scripture, to fulfill the royal law? (Jas 2:8)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Then washed I thee with water; yea I thoroughly washed away thy blood from thee, and I anointed thee with oil.

2. Behold, my servant shall deal prudently, he shall be exalted and extolled, and be very high.

3. I am afraid of you, lest I have bestowed upon you labour in vain.

4. Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace and ensue it.

**********

**********

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Ezekiel  (Eze 16:9)
2. Isaiah  (Isa 52:13)
3. Galatians  (Ga 4:11)
4. I Peter  (1Pe 3:11)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (November 2015)

1. For what reason did God deliver Hezekiah and the city of Jerusalem from the hand of king Sennachereb, king of Assyria? (Isa 37:35)

2. Jesus continues ever with an unchangeable priesthood; why were Old Testament priests not suffered to continue? (Heb 7:23-24)

3. Who was the great man unto whom the patriarch Abraham gave a tenth of his spoils? (Heb 7:4)

4. What is the number one thing to consider when remembering and following the faith of those who speak God’s word to you? (Heb 13:7)

 5.   What reason did John the Baptist give those who asked him why he baptized people? (Joh 1:30-31)

6. Who was one of the two disciples who heard John say, “Behold the Lamb of God” and then followed Jesus?” (Joh 1:40)

 7.   Who did Jesus say would see hereafter angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of man? (Joh 1:49,51)

8. What famous event happened before Jesus’ disciples believed and understood Jesus’ saying “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up? (Joh 2:22)

9. Why do men in a state of condemnation love the darkness rather than light? (Joh 3:19)

10. Where were the disciples when Jesus met the woman of Samaria at Jacob’s well? (Joh 4:8)

**********

IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. And now I stand and am judged for the hope of the promise made of God unto our fathers.

2. And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you.

3. I have written to him the great things of my law, but they were counted as a strange thing.

4. And the key of the house of David will I lay upon his shoulder: so he shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open.

****


****


ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Acts  (Ac 26:6)
2. I Corinthians  (1Co 9:23)
3. Hosea  (Ho 8:12)
4. Isaiah  (Isa 22:22)

BIBLE QUESTIONS (December 2015)

1. Paul said to rejoice in the Lord always but what kind of rejoicing is evil? (Jas 4:16)

2. Why was no manner of hurt found on Daniel when he was delivered from the den of lions? (Da 6:23)

3. The Lord told Ephraim and Judah what trait was as a morning cloud and the early dew? (Ho 6:4)

4. Who was the seventh from Adam who would prophesy, Behold the Lord cometh with ten thousands of His saints? (Jude: 14)

5. What is blown in the city that causes the people to be afraid? (Am 3:6)

6. The church at Ephesus had left their first love but what did they have that the Lord also had? (Re 2:6)

7. What were the seven spirits of God John saw out of the throne of heaven along with the lightnings and thunderings? (Re 4:5)

8. What are the golden vials full of odours the four beasts and twenty four elders had before the throne of God? (Re 5:8)

9. For what purpose did the Lord raise up the Chaldeans, that bitter and hasty nation against His people? (Hab 1:12)

10. John saw no temple in the city that lieth four square; the temple therein consisted of what two? (Re 21:22)

**********
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. How then comfort ye me in vain, seeing in your answers there remaineth falsehood?

2. O Lord, thou art my God; I will exalt thee, I will praise thy name; for thou hast done wonderful things; thy counsels of old are faithfulness and truth.

3. Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk as so as ye have us for an ensample.

4. The husbandman that laboureth must be first partaker of the fruits.


xxxxxxx

ANSWERS
IN WHAT BOOK OF THE BIBLE ARE THESE VERSES?

1. Job  (Job 21:34)
2. Isaiah  (Isa 25:1)
3. Philippians  (Php 3:17)
4. II Timothy  (2Ti 2:5)

Bible Studies in the New Testament Church

Bible Studies in the New Testament Church
Written by Marty Smith  

The design of the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ, as set forth in the New Testament scriptures, is flawless. Those scriptures completely furnish disciples in every age and every culture to worship their Savior in a manner pleasing to Him and edifying to them, and no human innovation is required or desired.  Additions to the New Testament pattern, or subtractions from it, are detrimental.

The implementations of that flawless design by God’s children throughout the generations are, however, not perfect.  Thoughtful disciples in each generation must frequently examine themselves, comparing their implementation of worship, and service to God, to the perfect pattern set forth in scripture.  With that comparison in mind, let’s examine the issue of Bible Studies.  Are Bible Studies in accordance with the New Testament, or not?

As one reads through the four gospels and the book of Acts, it is clear that the Lord Jesus Christ used preaching, and He used dialog, to instruct His disciples. Consider these examples of dialog:

·         [Mt 16:13-16] When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?  And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.  He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?  And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.

·         [Mr 4:10-12] And when he was alone, they that were about him with the twelve asked of him the parable.  And he said unto them, Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables:  That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest at any time they should be converted, and their sins should be forgiven them.

·         [Lu 9:46-50] Then there arose a reasoning among them, which of them should be greatest.  And Jesus, perceiving the thought of their heart, took a child, and set him by him,  And said unto them, Whosoever shall receive this child in my name receiveth me: and whosoever shall receive me receiveth him that sent me: for he that is least among you all, the same shall be great.  And John answered and said, Master, we saw one casting out devils in thy name; and we forbad him, because he followeth not with us. And Jesus said unto him, Forbid him not: for he that is not against us is for us.

·         [Joh 14:5-9] Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way?  Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.  If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him. Philip saith unto him, Lord, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us.  Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?

Notice that the Lord did not merely make Himself available for dialog; He provoked dialog.  This pattern of dialog did not end with Jesus Christ instructing His apostles, but continued as His apostles taught others:

·         [Ac 2:37-38] Now when they heard this, they were pricked in their heart, and said unto Peter and to the rest of the apostles, Men and brethren, what shall we do?  Peter said unto them, 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.

·         [Ac 19:9-10] But when divers were hardened, and believed not, but spake evil of that way before the multitude, he departed from them, and separated the disciples, disputing daily in the school of one Tyrannus.  And this continued by the space of two years; so that all they which dwelt in Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus, both Jews and Greeks.

In Ac 17:10-11, the Bible gives an example of what God considers noble:

And the brethren immediately sent away Paul and Silas by night unto Berea: who coming thither went into the synagogue of the Jews.  These 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.

It is highly unlikely that the Bereans each went home and opened their copies of the scriptures.  Very few people could afford to own books, which consisted of scroll collections.  More than likely, the Bereans met at the synagogue and opened the scrolls of scripture there, and verified the preaching they had heard earlier from the apostle Paul.  It is very likely that this was a Bible Study.  It is almost beyond question that the example in Ac 19:9-10 was a Bible Study.

A few generations ago, many churches were able to follow the scriptural pattern of dialog around the written word of God informally.  In an agricultural area, or small town environment, brothers and sisters might all go back to a home to sit on the porch and discuss scripture.  Or they might gather by the fireside and have such a discussion.  These were very positive activities.  Designating a time and place to discuss scripture, even on a regularly scheduled basis, in no way detracts from the scriptural aspects of such activities.  A scriptural practice which is good in and of itself does not become bad because of increased planning.

The church does not need new methods or new solutions.  But the church also does not need to abandon activities that were clearly a part of New Testament worship to the Lord, if she is able to accomplish them.  The need to have dialog to instruct disciples in God’s word did not pass away with the cessation of signs and wonder, nor did it come to a stop with the last apostle.

It is possible sometimes that the Lord’s people need to break up some of their own fallow ground.    Such fallow ground is not ground that belongs to someone else, or ground that is unfit for cultivation; it is simply ground that could and should be cultivated, but has not been used for a while.  The Lord gave a commandment for Israel and Judah to repent and break up their fallow ground shortly before the fall of Samaria (Ho 10:12) and before the fall of Jerusalem (Jer 4:3).  They needed to review God’s word and see what new things they had added, and discontinue them – and they needed to see what old things they had left off, and start doing them again.  They needed to ask for the “old ways” and walk therein.

One example of such “fallow ground” is found in Ne 8:13-17.  In this account, the people of Jerusalem had come out of captivity and finally rebuilt the walls of the city.  As they began to hear the word of God, they at first grieved, but then were comforted by God’s mercy.  As they continued looking into God’s word, they discovered that God had commanded them, during the feast of tabernacles, to dwell in booths. Sure enough, this is found in Le 23:39-43.  This was something Israel had not practiced since the days of Joshua – nearly one thousand years before Nehemiah!  They had not practiced it in the days of the judges, in the days of the kings, or in the seventy years of captivity.  When they discovered this commandment, and once again began obeying it, there was great gladness in Jerusalem.  If the children of Israel could miss one of God’s clear commandments about worship over a period of a thousand years, it may be possible that the church could miss a New Testament example for a generation or two.  God’s mercy is, however, great, and allows space for repentance.

Here are some objections often posed against Bible Studies, and answers to them:

1.      They are something new added to worship! Answer: Clearly they are not, since they are in the New Testament.  We may not have had them in 1950 AD, but the church of Jesus Christ had them in 50 AD.

2.      They are the same as Sunday Schools!  Answer:  Says who? Sunday Schools have division according to age or gender.  Sunday Schools often have unqualified teachers, and externally developed curricula and materials.  Bible Studies need have none of these unscriptural characteristics.

3.      They will lead to Sunday Schools!  Answer:  Says who? Is this “lead to” assertion a scripture, or a private prophecy?  If there are any examples where a Bible Study led to a Sunday School, it is not well known – nor is it a foregone conclusion that one must lead to the other in the future.

4.      Preaching is the power of God unto salvation, so why have Bible Studies? Answer:  Because Jesus Christ and His apostles had them.  Either Paul considered Bible Studies to be included in his definition of “preaching” or else he conducted daily dialog in the school of Tyrannus (see Ac 19:9-10) because the Lord showed him that the church needed something in addition to preaching.

Instruction in the gospel through dialog is clearly a part of the New Testament pattern.  Bible Studies are a good way to continue such dialog.  May the church practice and enjoy this New Testament activity, to the glory of the name of the Lord Jesus Christ.

BIBLE STUDY WITH THE CHURCH

BIBLE STUDY WITH THE CHURCH

Throughout my ministry in the Primitive Baptist Church, I have often been asked the question, “What do you think about the church having Bible studies?” I have found that the people asking this question generally have one of two viewpoints. Some do not think it is a New Testament practice and that it may lead to other unbiblical practices such as Sunday schools, youth groups, etc. Others simply ask, “What’s wrong with studying the Bible?” Both of these views express honorable concerns. The former expresses a desire to strictly follow the New Testament pattern of worship while the latter expresses a desire to learn more about God’s word. Every member of the Lord’s church should share both of these concerns which could be combined into one statement, “I want to learn more about God’s word as the church meets together to worship him in the way He has commanded us.” Regardless of our individual viewpoint, we should respect those who disagree with us based on honorable motives.

When discussing the subject of church Bible study, we should be careful to describe what we mean when we use the term. For example, some envision a format no different than a Sunday school consisting of divided classes based on age and/or gender, men and women teachers, and an open forum in which anyone can speak. Other than some of those affiliated with the Progressive Primitive Baptists, I do not know of any Primitive Baptist Church which has adopted all of these practices. However, in my conversations with pastors and church members throughout the country, I have found several variations of what is usually referred to as a Bible study. In order to determine if any of these variations are biblical, we must analyze each one in light of the principles taught by precept or example in the New Testament. The different variations are described as follows:

1. A traditional Primitive Baptist worship service in which the pastor progresses from week to week as he teaches a particular subject or book of the Bible.

2. In addition to the foregoing description, the pastor also provides written material before or after his presentation in order that the congregation may take notes and/or engage in further study at home.

3. In addition to the second description, the pastor also gives an opportunity for questions and/or comments from those in attendance. Oftentimes this forum is a more casual setting in which the congregation may assemble around tables in the lunch room.

I can only recall two criticisms of the first two variations. Some are concerned that this method of teaching is unbiblical or may lead to unbiblical practices such as Sunday schools. Generally speaking, to avoid departure from New Testament practice, we must make sure that only men who are called of God are ordained to the ministry (Heb 5:4; Jer 1:5; 1Co 9:16; 1Ti 4:14). In addition, these men should be well read with regard to the doctrine and practice of the church as taught in the scriptures (1Ti 3:6; 2Ti 2:15). The church should follow the pastor as he is the leader of the flock (1Co 11:1; 1Pe 5:2; Heb 13:17). Therefore, the direction of the church largely depends on the wisdom of the pastor. If a man does not have the ability to know where a Biblical practice ends and an unbiblical one begins, he should not be ordained to the office of elder. Otherwise, singing could lead to the introduction of musical instruments and “dinner on the grounds” could lead to the utilization of carnal activities for the purpose of attracting people to the church. Likewise, he should be able to judge which man-made traditions are simply a custom and which ones are a violation of the Biblical pattern. The potential for departure from New Testament practice is alleviated when the church carefully scrutinizes the wisdom of those she is considering for ordination to the office of an elder. The second criticism of the first two variations states that this particular methodology replaces spirit filled preaching with a lecture. The scriptures teach clearly that there is diversity among those whom God has called to preach (1Co 12:4-11) and that the Spirit distributes the various gifts to God’s ministers for the purpose of edifying the church (1Co 12:7). There are many different methods which a minister may utilize to teach God’s word including expository, word study, by subject, character studies, etc. A God called minister should always strive to follow the leadership of the Spirit in terms of what he preaches and how he presents it because only the Lord knows what His people need to hear and when they need to hear it. Some ministers, because of the gift the Lord has given him, generally utilize one particular method, while others ordinarily use a different method. There are also ministers who use several different methods or manners of delivery. However, the determination of what to preach and how to present it is ultimately between him and the Lord. As one preacher stated it to his congregation, “My job is to give you what the Lord gives me.”

A minister is obligated to preach the word (2Ti 4:2). To accomplish his task he must study and rightly divide the word of truth as a good steward of the mysteries of God (2Ti 2:15; 1Co 4:1); read clearly to the congregation, explain the meaning, and make relevant application (Ne 8:8); declare all the counsel of God (Ac 20:27); and preach and teach publicly as well as in the homes of the members (Ac 20:20). Throughout the gospels, the Acts of the Apostles, and the epistles “preaching” generally refers to one who heralds (publicly proclaims important news or information). Clearly, this describes the proclamation of the gospel (the good news or glad tidings of our salvation in Jesus Christ). The word “teach” means “to conduct one’s self as a teacher, to impart instruction, to instil doctrine into, to explain or expound.” These two types of methodology are distinctly stated in reference to the ministry of Peter and the other apostles, “And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ” (Ac 5:42). Evidently, our distinction between “regular preaching” and “bible study” is a practice with biblical precedence. The reader of this article is encouraged to do an in depth study of the usage of “preach” and “teach” in the New Testament as it applies to the work of the ministry. With regard to the use of written materials, we learn in the Book of Acts that the Bereans were more noble than the Thessalonians “…in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.”(Ac 17:11). If modern technology was available (word processors, photocopiers, etc.), surely Paul would have no objection to the use of written materials as a means of assisting the Bereans in their efforts to learn and remember what he had taught them.

The third variation of Bible study is different from the first two in that it allows for an open forum. When the church meets together to hear the word of God expounded, they are instructed to, “Let all things be done decently and in order.” (1Co 14:40). The context of this statement has to do with maintaining good order during the time of preaching. The church at Corinth was forbidden to speak in tongues (any language which was foreign to the audience) unless they interpreted what they were saying (1Co 14:5,13,27). With regard to the issue of asking questions during or after the presentation, orderliness must be maintained or confusion will be the result (1Co 14:33). The responsibility of maintaining order belongs to the pastor (1Ti 5:2). Oftentimes, with an open forum, questions are asked which have nothing to do with the subject being taught. Furthermore, statements are sometimes made which are unprofitable or plant seeds of false doctrine in the minds of other members of the church. If an open forum is allowed, it must be strictly monitored and controlled by the pastor of the church.

The Bible gives specific instructions to women concerning speaking in the church. When the church is assembled as a body to hear the word of God, the women are to be in silence “… for it is not permitted unto them to speak…for it is a shame for women to speak in the church…” (1Co 14:34-35). This strict rule applies to a specific setting, i.e. when the church has met together to hear the teaching of God’s word. Some would say, “This just means that women are not called to preach”. However, Timothy speaks directly to this matter when he writes, “Let the woman learn in silence with all subjection.” (1Ti 2:11). Timothy is addressing the conduct of the woman in the learning process. The next verse (1Ti 2:12) addresses her disqualification from preaching. Therefore, when the church is assembled, women should not speak during the time allotted for preaching, teaching, or Bible study.

With regard to an open forum perhaps a more reasonable approach would be to allow for questions or comments after the assembly is dismissed. This is a common practice among Primitive Baptist after the Sunday morning worship service. The conversation may take place in the auditorium, the lunchroom, or the members’ homes. There are plenty of opportunities for discussion with the pastor after dismissal. The responsibility to feed the flock of God and take the oversight of the church is solely given to the man who has been called of God to preach and called by the church to serve (1Pe 5:2). Therefore, let us allow for a reasonable level of tolerance with regard to his method(s) for carrying out this awesome responsibility.

Written for the cause of peace in Zion,
Elder Buddy Abernathy
September 11, 2014

Biblical Reasons for Closed Communion

Biblical Reasons for Closed Communion
Written by Chase Harrison  
 
Introduction 
It is my purpose and intent in this article to provide Biblical reasoning and logic for why Primitive Baptists believe in and observe “closed communion” in their church practice. As any Bible-believing Christian should, we seek to be as in line with the scriptures as we possibly can, both in doctrine and in practice. In holding to this church practice, Primitive Baptists have often been accused by others as being judgmental, bigoted, and pharisaical: Judgmental in the sense that we look down on others as being less worthy or not worthy; Bigoted in the sense that we are slaves to our own ideas and opinions regardless of basis or reasoning; Pharisaical in the sense that we are self-righteous in our intent and approach. Now, while Primitive Baptists have at times been guilty of these accusations (no one is totally exempt from or immune to these attitudes), it would be narrow-minded and stereotypical to totally dismiss this important topic of closed communion based upon such generic and blanketed perceptions of Primitive Baptist church practice. The fact is, Primitive Baptists do not seek to be odd, different, judgmental, or any such thing just for the sake of being that way. As stated in our articles of faith, we believe in the Divinely-inspired scriptures of both the Old and New Testaments and that they are the only rule of faith and practice within the Lord’s church. In the case of closed communion, this is our foundational basis and sole point of reasoning. We feel doctrinally constrained by New Testament scripture to observe the Lord’s Supper and communion in this way. It is my purpose in this article to present scriptural evidence as the basis for our commonly questioned and heavily criticized practice of closed communion.
 
First, I feel it necessary to express a quick word pertaining to terminology. When it comes to how Primitive Baptists observe the Lord’s Supper and communion, some people refer to it as “closed” communion and some people refer to it as “close” communion. This is merely an issue of semantics and preference. So, for the purposes of this writing, and in order to be consistent and avoid confusion, I will now define what I mean by “closed communion” and that will be the term and definition in which I will use throughout this article. This is meant solely for the clarity of this article only and is not an effort to standardize Primitive Baptist terminology. For this article, I choose the term “closed communion” and define it to mean the following: Primitive Baptists maintain that only believers baptized into a Primitive Baptist church may partake in the ordinance of the church known as The Lord’s Supper and/or Communion. In other words, only those baptized believers of like faith and order may participate together in this church ordinance. Another reason I personally prefer the term “closed” over “close” is that later in this article we will contrast the two different ideas of open communion versus closed communion. Obviously, it logically makes more sense to contrast the opposites “closed” and “open” rather than the opposites “close” and “far” (or “distant”). Again, this may seem like a silly distinction to some, but for the purposes of this article and to be clear, it is expedient that we chose one term, define it, and stick with it. So, for the duration of this article, when I refer to closed communion, you now know exactly what I am referring to.
 
Overview of Scriptural Points to Consider
1) Jesus preached to multitudes but communed with the apostles only (disciples).

2) Doctrine matters! -- The Day of Pentecost is an example and pattern.

3) Participating in communion is a doctrinal statement, not just practical and symbolic.

4) The word communion in itself means fellowship.

5) Paul rebuked the Corinthian church for divisions that made void their communion service.

6) The Lord’s supper/Communion is an ordinance of the New Testament church and is therefore subject to the authority, rules, and discretion of the church.
 
Scriptural Points to Consider
1) Jesus preached to multitudes but communed with the apostles only (disciples).

Many who oppose or question the Primitive Baptist practice of closed communion do so because they themselves practice open communion, or they have at least seriously considered it as a proper option. Naturally, they view anything more limited than open communion as being unfair and unequal treatment. In their view, anyone and everyone who desires to partake in communion should be able to. At first glance, this would appear to be very fair and reasonable thinking. Treat everyone equally as not to offend anyone. Well, if open communion is in fact the proper approach, then surely Jesus Christ Himself would have taught it and done it, right? Because whatever Jesus did, we can rest assured that it was right and perfect and irrefutably good. Whatever His example is, we as Christians should undoubtedly follow and not question.

Throughout the earthly ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ, it was very common for Him to address, teach, and preach to multitudes of people of mixed backgrounds, beliefs, and moral character. Jesus broadcasted His own gospel to these public multitudes and often qualified it by declaring, “he that hath an ear to hear, let him hear.” However, while Jesus clearly preached to multitudes, not one time in scripture will you find that He communed with the multitudes or the general public in the sense of symbolically taking His body and His blood, i.e. the Lord’s Supper. The only time in scripture that we read about Jesus commanding such things as “Take, eat; this is my body” and “Drink ye all of it” in a communion-type setting is when He communed with His twelve disciples right before He went to pray in the Garden of Gethsemane (Mt 26:17-30; Mr 14:12-26; Lu 22:7-20). Jesus preached for about three and a half years leading up to His death, yet He waited to have the first communion service about a day before His crucifixion. If open communion were the correct approach, then why would Jesus let so many opportunities to openly commune with the multitudes go by? Why did He wait almost until His dying hour to administer the first communion service? I believe it was to weed out the true followers from all the rest. Out of the thousands that Jesus preached to during the course of His ministry, how many remained steadfast and followed Him through all the hard sayings and tough times? How many were willing to sacrifice their earthly lives to follow Christ wholly and all the way to the end? How many were still following Him right before He went to the cross? The answer is twelve. And Christ desired to have this special communion and sacred service with those twelve just before He would go to suffer on the cross (Lu 22:14-15). I believe this communion is a very special service and blessing for one who has made the proper commitment and sacrifice to follow the Lord in discipleship. They have an extra abundant blessing of very close communion and fellowship with the Lord because of the sacrifice and commitment they have made to the Lord to obey His word and serve Him in His church kingdom. The Lord is truly a rewarder of those that diligently seek Him (Heb 11:6).

Jesus Himself practiced “closed communion” in this sense. He never commanded nor offered the ordinance of the communion service to the general public. He did not even administer it to general believers, for there were many that believed on Jesus only for the miracles that they saw Him perform (Joh 2:23; 6:2). By the unmistakable actions of Jesus, communion was only to true believers and disciples who were so committed to their discipleship that they were willing to deny themselves, take up their cross, and follow Him daily no matter what (Lu 9:23). Consider the account at the end of Joh 6 in which Jesus had many disciples following Him. Yet, as Jesus began to teach some hard truths and lessons, many became offended and turned and followed Him no more. After these “part-time disciples” departed, Jesus turned to His true and steadfast disciples (the twelve) and asked, “Will ye also go away?” Of course, we all know what Peter’s wonderful answer was there, but the point is that great sacrifice and steadfast perseverance is required for true discipleship. And scripture has already confirmed that Jesus only communed with the twelve, His closest and most steadfast disciples. Now, it is very worthy to be noted that no disciple is perfectly steadfast in their service. Peter denied Christ three times before His death. The eleven apostles (I am omitting Judas) all lost hope and sorrowfully went back to their previous lives after Christ was crucified, put to death, and laid in the tomb. None of the apostles anxiously awaited His resurrection with joyous anticipation like they should have. They had to be reminded of His resurrection after the fact, and they were upbraided by Jesus for their unbelief. They all faltered in that regard. So let’s keep discipleship in its proper perspective. At the same time, though, the fact still remains that Christ only communed in this very special and sacred way with His disciples and not the general multitudes.

Therefore, by the example of Jesus set forth in New Testament scripture, we as Primitive Baptists maintain that a disciple is one that has professed belief in the Lord Jesus Christ, denied themselves, taken up their cross to follow after Him, been baptized into His New Testament church, and then continues to be as steadfast as possible in that capacity (Joh 8:31). This is a person that has scriptural right to commune at the Lord’s Supper as an ordinance of His church.

2) Doctrine matters! -- The Day of Pentecost as an example and pattern.

After Peter preached on the Day of Pentecost, many were pricked in their heart and compellingly inquired, “What shall we do?” Peter responded:

“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.” – Ac 2:38.

Clearly, the proper response to the New Testament gospel message is repentance and water baptism, which, as we are about to see, is the entry into the New Testament church of the Lord Jesus Christ:

Ac 2:41 - Then they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls.

Ac 2:42 - And they continued stedfastly in the apostles' doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.

Ac 2:43 - And fear came upon every soul: and many wonders and signs were done by the apostles.

Ac 2:44 - And all that believed were together, and had all things common;

Ac 2:45 - And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.

Ac 2:46 - And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,

Ac 2:47 - Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.” – Ac 2:41-47

Let’s consider a few points within this section of scripture:
1 They that gladly received his word were baptized and added to the church. The context for the rest of the passage is here established as referring to baptized believers of like faith and order as members of the Lord’s church.

2 And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship and breaking of bread. This speaks to two things: 1) steadfast commitment and discipleship, and 2) how that doctrine is inseparably connected to fellowship and communion. Doctrine is important and essential. Continuing in the apostles’ doctrine was necessary if they were going to also enjoy the fellowship and breaking of bread (communion).

3 All that believed were together and had all things common. This is quite self-explanatory, but I would like to emphasize the importance of being together and having all things common in the Lord’s church and service, especially pertaining to fellowship and communion, as is in this context.

4 They sold their possessions and goods and parted them to all men. Again, this speaks to the level of commitment and sacrifice that these particular disciples had in their obedience and willingness to serve the Lord in His church after hearing the gospel call through preaching. They were so excited about the gospel and serving the Lord that they were willing to give up their worldly possessions to follow Christ and serve Him in His church kingdom. (See the “rich young ruler” for a counter-example.)

5 They continued daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, and did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart. Again, this speaks to their daily continuance in their commitment and discipleship. And yet again, I cannot stress it enough, please notice the unity of faith and practice that they enjoyed. They did all these things with one accord, and with gladness, and with singleness of heart. And yet again, the breaking of bread is mentioned, which indicates that communion is still consistently part of the context throughout this passage.

6 And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved. This last part confirms for us that verse 41 was indeed referring to three thousand souls being added to the church after they gladly received the word and were baptized.
 
It was evidently set forth on the Day of Pentecost that only baptized believers of like faith, order, and practice as members of the Lord’s New Testament church were the ones that were breaking bread and participating in the communion service. As it was with Jesus in our first point in this article, so it was with the apostles on the Day of Pentecost. They did not command or offer communion to the general masses, but rather only to baptized believers and disciples that were of like belief, of the same doctrine, of one accord, and had all things common. There is no scriptural evidence here that any valid communion ever included unbaptized individuals or those who had departed from the “apostles’ doctrine”. In fact, as we have shown above, the scriptural evidence actually gives strong indication to the contrary.
 
3) Participating in communion is a doctrinal statement, not just practical and symbolic.

We as Primitive Baptists believe that there are two ordinances of the New Testament church of the Lord Jesus Christ: Water Baptism and the Lord’s Supper (communion). While these two ordinances differ in their exact purpose and scope, both of them exist within the framework of the New Testament church and both have strong symbolic meaning. Water baptism symbolically depicts the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ and is a public profession of faith that one believes in Christ and the fact that He died, and was buried, and was raised again on their behalf. The Lord’s Supper, or communion, is also very symbolic. It depicts the Lord’s sacrificial body and blood and serves to remind baptized believers that His “body was broken” and His “blood was shed” for them. While there is no doubt that these two ordinances are practical and symbolic, they are also very doctrinal. When a person participates in these ordinances, they are not just going through the motions of a practice, but they are boldly making a public statement and profession of faith regarding their doctrinal beliefs of Christ and His work and His gospel and His church.

As we saw in the previous point and example regarding what happened on the Day of Pentecost, the apostles’ doctrine was essentially tied to fellowship and the breaking of the bread in communion. Doctrine is inseparably connected to the practices and ordinances of the church and is therefore very important and should not be compromised. Let’s consider a scripture in which Paul addressed the Corinthian church:

“For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.” – 1Co 11:29.

Discerning the Lord’s body while we take communion is surely a doctrinal matter. It refers to understanding and belief of what we are doing when we remember the Lord’s sacrificial body and blood in the communion service. A Catholic does not doctrinally discern the Lord’s body in the same way that a Methodist does. A Methodist does not doctrinally discern the Lord’s body in the same way that a Baptist does. So on and so forth. The idea of open communion violates this principle of doctrinally discerning the Lord’s body by essentially implying that doctrine does not matter. Some proponents of open communion state that as long as one believes in Christ and professes to be a Christian then they are welcome to commune at the Lord’s Supper. Some do not even limit it that far and open it up to the masses without any restrictions whatsoever. Consequently, by practice, this states that doctrine does not matter and is not significant when it comes to the Lord’s Supper and communion. This goes against the scriptural evidence that we have looked at so far.

Paul rebuked the Corinthian church for not discerning the Lord’s body properly. The effects and consequences of not discerning the Lord’s body are not to be overlooked or taken lightly. Paul was very serious and listed severe ramifications. One that eats and drinks the Lord’s Supper but does not discern the Lord’s body is in danger of eating and drinking unworthily and eating and drinking damnation to one’s self. Obviously, this is not eternal consequence, but Paul even goes on to say in the very next verse that some had in fact already experienced judgment for not discerning the Lord’s body and partaking of the Lord’s Supper unworthily: “For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.” – 1Co 11:30.

4) The word communion in itself means fellowship.

The word communion is only found four times in three verses in the New Testament of the KJV Bible. All four times, it is translated from the Greek word koinōnia which is defined by Strong’s to mean: “fellowship, association, joint participation”. This same Greek word in other places in the New Testament is also translated into the English word fellowship twelve times. Clearly, I think it is more than safe to conclude that communion and fellowship can be thought of synonymously. The Bible itself uses them as such. Thus it follows that the church ordinance known as the Lord’s Supper, or communion, is certainly a matter of fellowship.

With the semantics now being defined and established, there are simple and clear scriptural commands given in the New Testament to avoid divisions and heresies and to not fellowship those things. These commands can be found in scriptures such as:

“And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed. Yet count him not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother.” – 2Th 3:14-15

“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.” – 2Jo 10-11

“Now I beseech you, brethren, mark them which cause divisions and offences contrary to the doctrine which ye have learned; and avoid them.” – Ro 16:17.

Did you notice what the common thread is in these three different passages? In a word, doctrine. Doctrine is the determining factor in all three cases. This speaks again to how very important and essential that doctrine is when it comes to church practice and church fellowship. Doctrine is the foundation and basis by which a division, or heresy, is recognized, identified, and determined to have taken place, and thus is what defines the denominational distinctions and lines of fellowship pertaining to churches.

In the Thessalonian passage, they were to “have no company with” anybody that did not “obey our word by this epistle”. If those words and phrases mean anything at all, then they at least have reference to fellowship determined by doctrine and obedience to doctrine. In the 2nd John passage, the clear admonition is to not even bid a person God speed if they do not bring and line up with “this doctrine”, much less fellowship with them in their house or any other setting, especially the church. Finally, the Romans passage is perhaps the most insightful of them all. This section of scripture not only teaches us to mark and avoid them which cause divisions, but it also tells us how divisions are caused AND recognized. Notice, contrary to popular belief, doctrine does not cause divisions. People that walk contrary to doctrine cause divisions. The clear rendering and natural reading of the text demonstrates this truth. The word “them” refers to people, and the phrase says, “them which cause divisions”. No other conclusion can be properly conceived. People cause divisions when they do not adhere to the New Testament doctrines of the church of Jesus Christ. It is His church, His doctrine, His commandments, and His rules. The doctrine itself does not cause divisions but rather people do when they walk contrary to it, as the Romans verse clearly states. The doctrine is simply the standard rule of measure by which we determine a division or offence has occurred.

So, in all three scriptural passages, doctrine is the common key in determining a division has occurred, and all three also confirmed that we are to not fellowship those who walk contrary to doctrine. This does not mean that we are to look down upon, judge, be hateful towards, or mistreat those that differ from us doctrinally. The Thessalonian passage above gives us the proper balance in this tough issue. It tells us to not count them as an enemy but admonish them as a brother. Clearly, we are to treat all with respect, kindness, meekness, and love, just as we would a brother. Yet, the other part of the passage cannot be ignored either. If the instruction to “note that man and have no company with him” means anything at all, then surely it has reference to fellowship. And as we demonstrated at the beginning of this section, fellowship and communion are the same and are treated synonymously in scripture. Therefore, doctrine determines who we are able to sit down with at the Lord’s Supper table in His church when we observe the communion service.

5) Paul rebuked the Corinthian church for divisions that made void their communion service.

In the previous section, I felt it necessary to establish the essentiality and importance of doctrine as it pertains to church practice and church fellowship. This next point will build upon what we have established thus far. So to summarize, I would like to reiterate the following scriptural concepts and principles:

1) Doctrine indeed matters regarding church practice and church fellowship. It cannot be compromised.

2) Communion is equal to fellowship. Partaking the Lord’s Supper in the church is a matter of fellowship.

3) Doctrine defines divisions and scripture admonishes us to not fellowship those who have caused division.

Considering all three of those principles together, we have a strong conceptual case for “closed communion” but we have yet to see an example where the concept is applied in a real and actual church setting. That is where this fifth point comes in. Let’s look at the very telling account where Paul rebuked the Corinthian church for making a mockery of the communion service which rendered it nothing more than a farce and a travesty:

1Co 11:17 - Now in this that I declare unto you I praise you not, that ye come together not for the better, but for the worse.

1Co 11:18 - For first of all, when ye come together in the church, I hear that there be divisions among you; and I partly believe it.

1Co 11:19 - For there must be also heresies among you, that they which are approved may be made manifest among you.

1Co 11:20 - When ye come together therefore into one place, this is not to eat the Lord's supper.”

1Co 11:17-20

Paul calls out the church members at Corinth for having divisions and heresies among themselves when they came together in the church to eat the Lord’s Supper and have communion. 1Co 11:20 is the very telling part. The word therefore ties the context of the preceding verses to 1Co 11:20. Thus, we conclude that the divisions and heresies among them were the cause of their communion service being rendered null and void. Paul clearly states, “when ye come together…this is not to eat the Lord’s Supper”. When the Corinthians came together in the church in this state of having divisions and heresies among them and not being united in doctrine, faith, order, and practice, it had a severe impact on the validity of the communion service. It was rendered invalid.

Let’s see if we can apply the three principles summarized at the beginning of this section to this specific example regarding the Corinthian church:

1 Doctrine matters – If doctrine did not matter when pertaining to the communion service, then Paul would have had no basis for his rebuke of the Corinthian church. There would have been no basis to determine that the divisions and heresies had even occurred. Paul’s accusations would have been baseless. Doctrine was the foundational basis of Paul’s rebuke, and he tied it directly to their communion service being rendered invalid by their actions. Doctrine does matter and has a great influence on church practice, as is demonstrated by this example.

2 Communion is fellowship – By Paul’s rebuke and final declaration that their communion service was made void by their fellowshipping of divisions and heresies, we can undoubtedly conclude that the practice of partaking in the communion service is indeed a matter of distinct fellowship that is determined by doctrinal standard and unity. This is because a division or heresy cannot exist without some type of doctrinal difference or doctrinal distinction. And clearly, the church at Corinth had divisions and heresies among them, implying doctrinal differences at some level. The fellowshipping of these doctrinal differences caused them to be in a divided, heretical, and schismatic state. And their divided state caused their communion service to be not only nullified, but turned into a shame and a mockery of the Lord’s sacred service. To commune with those of doctrinal difference is to fellowship division and heresy. And to fellowship division and heresy is to render your own communion service null and void. Communion and fellowship go hand in hand in this way and cannot be separated. They are synonymous! To commune with division is to fellowship division. If doctrine does in fact matter, and we have already shown that it does, then doctrinal unity on the essentials is necessary for scriptural fellowship and communion.

3 Do not fellowship divisions – As we have already shown, the clear instruction of scripture is to not fellowship divisions, offences, heresies, or errors. This example demonstrates that there are serious ramifications to violating those scriptural instructions. In other words, it is not optional or suggested. God is serious about His word and His church, and there are consequences to fellowshipping divisions, heresies, and doctrinal differences. As mentioned earlier in this article, the consequences the Corinthians suffered for fellowshipping divisions and heresies were as follows:

● Their communion service was rendered null and void 1Co 11:20).
● They made a mockery and drunken spectacle of the Lord’s Supper (1Co 11:21).
● They ate and drank the body and blood of the Lord unworthily, rendering them guilty of the same (1Co 11:27).
● They ate and drank damnation to themselves (1Co 11:29).
● They did not discern the Lord’s body (1Co 11:29).
● Many became weak and sickly among them, and many even died (1Co 11:30).
 
This section was lengthy but important. It is a straightforward scriptural example and application of the principles and concepts that we established earlier in this article. Put these first five scriptural points together, and consider their logical sum, and you will see that the popular idea of open communion goes against the abundance of Biblical evidence that we have looked at so far.
 
6) The Lord’s supper/Communion is an ordinance of the New Testament Church and is therefore subject to the authority, rules, and discretion of the church.

Some advocates of open communion use the following scripture as grounds to try to establish that no person has the right to judge another person pertaining to the communion service, thus opening communion up to any person claiming to have already examined themselves properly:

“But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup.”
1Co 11:28.

In other words, according to their view, a person examining themselves is sufficient, and the validity of their communion is between them and the Lord only. To assert this view is to ignore the context of the passage and the context of the overall Corinthian letter. First of all, Paul is not writing to random individuals or the general public. He is writing to the church at Corinth. This is clearly stated at the beginning of his letter:

“Paul, called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother, Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours:” – 1Co 1:1-2

Any Bible verse must always be considered in its immediate context AND within the context of the book/letter in which it is contained. This is a basic principle of hermeneutics and Biblical interpretation. To take one verse and apply it to all individuals without restriction, when the overall book/letter applies it to a particular church, is to violate the context and intended meaning. Since the Corinthian letter was written to the Corinthian church, we must consider the above verse within the context and framework of the church. This is simply striving to stay true to the context.

While it is true that we must certainly examine ourselves individually in the Lord’s service, this admonition cannot be extracted out of its church setting. In preceding verses, Paul has called out and rebuked the Corinthian church members for abusing the Lord’s Supper and communion service. Then, in his admonition to “let every man examine himself”, Paul is placing individual responsibility upon each church member to do as they are supposed to in the communion service, lest they eat and drink the Lord’s Supper unworthily. However, just because Paul places individual responsibility upon church members does not mean that the authority and role of the church is rendered null and void in the matter. The Lord’s Supper/communion is an ordinance of the church, and therefore all of its participants and proceedings are subject to the authority, judgment, and discretion of the New Testament church, which is the pillar and ground of the truth. Consider what Paul wrote to the young minister Timothy:

“But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.” – 1Ti 3:15.

Certainly, the church of God, as Jesus Christ as its Head, has the authority and governing power over the things that occur within it. As we have already established, the communion service is definitely something that goes on within the church. It is an ordinance of the church. Therefore, it is subject to the church body. Every church member should indeed examine themselves as to how they ought to behave in the house of God, and individual responsibility does rest upon each church member in that regard, but the church body has scriptural authority and right to exercise judgment, discernment, and discretion in its own matters. For example, consider a couple other passages that were also written to the same church at Corinth:
1Co 5:9-13 & 1Co 6:1-8.

These two passages clearly demonstrate that the church has the right to exercise judgment and discretion amongst itself and take action in church matters. In fact, Paul rebuked them for not taking proper action.

Many times when someone uses the above verse as a means to justify open communion, they do so because the idea of closed communion offends them, and their usual first response is “you don’t have the right to judge me.” Oftentimes, this is an emotional and knee-jerk reaction to an issue that is initially offensive to them on the surface. However, an offended person should not allow their emotion to overcome their sound reasoning insomuch that they totally dismiss the topic. What seems like an injustice may actually be a misunderstood truth and in fact be scriptural. While no one has the right to judge another eternally, there is a proper place and balance for judgment in the church pertaining to church ordinances and church matters. This is scriptural, as we have shown, and we seek only to follow God’s word as closely as possible. I am sure that any genuine Christian person and Bible-believer desires the same. Let us all strive for scriptural truth, regardless of personal opinions, preferences, or feelings. The Lord is worthy of our most honest efforts and endeavors to worship and serve Him in His church kingdom according to what He has stated in His word.
 
Conclusion
In closing, I would like to make a few statements about denominations. What distinguishes one denomination from another? Is it not doctrine and practice? Yes, denominations are divisions that have occurred over time because a person or a group of people departed from the doctrine of one church in order to uphold what they believe the truth to be and established another church. All the various denominations that exist in Christianity today were the product of someone somewhere along the way becoming divided in their understanding of doctrine and church practice. Thus a line of fellowship was drawn and a denomination born. Denominations represent divisions and disagreements. Otherwise, denominations would serve no purpose. In other words, if there were no fundamental disagreements over doctrine and practice among Christians, then there would be no need for all the different denominations, and everyone would be united as one church. And clearly, that is not the case. There are hundreds of denominations and sub-denominations in existence today. What is the point? We have already thoroughly looked at how scripture tells us to not fellowship divisions and heresies. And since denominations are nothing more than doctrinal divisions, the obvious conclusion is that we cannot fellowship other denominations when it comes to taking communion. (Remember, communion equals fellowship.) It would be a blatant violation of scripture, and as Peter said in Ac 5:29, “We ought to obey God rather than men.” So, either the denominational line is wrong or the communion/fellowship is wrong. But both cannot be correct and co-exist and still be in compliance with New Testament scripture. Therefore, this is why Primitive Baptists do not allow interdenominational communion in their churches.

When it comes to “closed communion”, and one considers these six scriptural points and the sum of their parts, there is overwhelming Biblical evidence that supports this church practice in which Primitive Baptists have historically held to and continue to hold to. While many have spontaneously written off closed communion as being pharisaical and have never given it another thought, I would encourage all serious Bible students and genuine followers of Christ to give fair consideration to the scriptural points that I have tried to present in this article. If the church at Corinth brought judgment upon themselves because they did not partake of the Lord’s Supper and communion properly, then surely it would be expedient for us to give it some serious thought and consideration and not dismiss such an important topic so quickly. Measure it against thus saith the word of God and see if it stands. I leave you with one simple admonition from the Apostle Paul:

“Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.” – 1Th 5:21.
 
Elder Chase Harrison

Biography Of Elder John Leland

Biography Of Elder John Leland
Written by Admin  

 The following biography of John Leland is from History Of The Church Of God, From The Creation To A.D. 1885; by Cushing Biggs and Sylvester Hassell.

John Leland was a pivotal American figure. While serving as a faithful minister of the gospel, he was also firm supporter of religious liberty. His influence in our country's development was crucial, with many historians crediting him with Freedom of Religion as guaranteed by the 1st Amendment.
 
Elder John Leland (1754-1841), a native of Grafton, Mass., was brought under conviction for sin and also concerned in regard to the ministry in his eighteenth year, experienced a hope in Christ and was baptized and began to exercise in public in his twentieth year, was married in his twenty-second year, and, during the sixty-seven years of his ministry, labored with his own hands, never solicited money for himself, went forth entirely undirected and unsupported by missionary societies or funds, preached from four to fourteen times a week, from Massachusetts to South Carolina (fifteen years in Virginia, from 1776 to 1791, and the most of the remainder of the time in Massachusetts), traveling more than a hundred thousand miles, somewhat on foot, but mostly on horseback, baptized 1,535 persons on a credible profession of faith, only one or two of whom ever attended Sunday Schools, faithfully preached the word unmixed with the doctrines and commandments of men, not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind, zealously opposed Sunday Schools, Theological Seminaries, a salaried ministry, and moneyed religious institutions, endured great and numerous persecutions, was an earnest advocate of civil and religious liberty, personally knew more than a thousand Baptist preachers, heard more than three hundred of them preach, and entertained more than two hundred of them at his house, wrote about thirty pamphlets and many hymns, including, "The day is past and gone," and "Christians, if your hearts be warm, Ice and snow can do no harm," never could preach without getting into the third chapter of John, declaring the necessity of being born again, and more and more felt his unworthiness the longer he lived, carefully weighing himself in the balances of the sanctuary and finding himself wanting, and feeling that his soul and all his services needed washing in the blood of the Lamb, and perfuming with the intercession of the great High Priest, and that, at last, on the verge of the grave, with hoary head, and decrepit limbs, and faltering tongue, he could but cry, "God, be merciful to me a sinner! Save, Lord, or I must perish!" He preached in four hundred and thirty-six meeting-houses, thirty-seven court-houses, several capitols, academies and school-houses, barns, tobacco-houses, and dwelling-houses, and many hundreds of times on stages in the open air, having congregations of from five to ten thousand people. In 1835 he wrote: "I have been preaching sixty years to convince men that human powers were too degenerate to effect a change of heart by self-exertion; and all the revivals of religion that I have seen have substantially accorded with that sentiment. But now a host of preachers and people have risen up, who ground salvation on the foundation that I have sought to demolish. The world is gone after them, and their converts increase abundantly. How much error there has been in the doctrine and measures that I have advocated, I cannot say; no doubt some, for I claim not infallible inspiration. But I have not yet been convinced of any mistake so radical as to justify a renunciation of what I have believed, and adopt the new measures." In 1833 he wrote to the "Signs of the Times:" "In these days of novelty we are frequently addressed from the pulpit as follows: 'Professors of religion, you stand in the way of God and sinners-give up your old hope and come now into the work-God cannot convert sinners while you are stumbling-blocks in the way-sinners are stumbling over you into hell. Profane sinners, I call upon you to flee from the wrath to come-come this minute and give your heart to God, or you will seal your own damnation-God has given you the power, and will damn you if you do not use it-God has done all He can for you and will do no more-look not for a change of heart; a change of purpose is all that is necessary-to pray the Lord to enable you would be presumptuous. Some of you are mourning for the loss of a friend-I tell you your friend is in hell, and has gone there on your account-had you done your duty, your friend would now be in Heaven, but for your neglect your friend is damned. My hearers, you may have a revival of religion whenever you please-begin in the work, and the work will begin among the people-continue in it and the work will continue-keep on and the work will become universal.' Now I have not so learned Christ-I do not understand the Scriptures in that light-it is not the voice of my Beloved-it sounds like the voice of a stranger, and I dare not follow it. Societies of various kinds are now formed, with ostensible views, to extirpate drunkenness, masonry, ignorance, slavery and idolatry from the earth; and the people, from the aged to the infant, are called upon to enroll their names and take a bold stand to moralize and christianize the world. Lying, fraud, love of money, hypocrisy, gaming, dueling and licentiousness as yet seem to be considered too sacred to be meddled with, for no society is formed to check them. The missionary establishment, in its various departments, is a stupendous institution. Literary and theological schools, Bible and tract societies, foreign and domestic missions, general, State, county and district conventions, Sunday School Unions, etc., are all included in it. To keep it in motion, missionary boards, presidents, treasurers, corresponding secretaries, agents, printers, buildings, teachers, runners, collectors, mendicants, etc., are all in requisition. The cloud of these witnesses is so great that one who doubts the divinity of the measure is naturally led to think of the locusts in Egypt that darkened the Heavens and ate up every green thing on earth. This machine is propelled by steam (money), and does not sail by the wind of Heaven. Immense donations and contributions have already been cast into the treasury; and we see no end to it, for the solicitors and mendicants are constantly crying 'Give, Give,' with an unblushing audacity that makes humble saints hold down their heads. But I forbear. The subject sickens. I close in the words of God Himself, 'Stand ye in the way, and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way, and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls'" Jer 6:16. Among the other remarkable and excellent sayings preserved in his writings are the following: "That God is good, and that men are rebellious-that salvation is of the Lord, and damnation is of ourselves, are truths revealed as plain as a sunbeam." "God sits upon a great white throne, free from every stain." "When I was a boy, I could not understand Pedobaptist orthography; they spelt circumcision, and pronounced it baptism. And I observed that they put the cart before the horse; instead of, 'He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved,' they would have it, 'He that is baptized and believeth shall be saved!'" "Some say, 'If you will pay me well for preaching and praying, I will do them, otherwise I will not.' Such golden sermons and silver prayers are of no great value." "There is no danger of your being damned, if you see yourselves bad enough to be saved wholly by grace. He that has raised you out of the grave of carnal security will loose you and let you go. He that has opened your eyes to see your dungeon and chains will also bring you out of the prison-house and set you free." Referring to the text which many preachers seemed to take, "Schools, Academies and Colleges are the inexhaustible fountains of true piety, morality and literature," he said that he had never been able to find it in the Bible. "In my travels I have heard much said about a Savior by the name of 'Old Mr. Well's You Can,' but I have never seen him, and almost despair of ever finding him below the sun. If the salvation of the soul depends upon our doing as well as we can, who can be saved? If a man falters once in his life from doing as well as he can, the chance is over with him. Those who place the greatest hope for Heaven on doing as well as they can, are more negligent in good works than those who detest themselves as the vilest of the vile, and trust alone in the mercy of God, through the blood of Christ. Pharisees may boast of good works, but humble penitents perform them." "The only true Missionary Society ever founded on earth was that established by Christ in Galilee more than eighteen hundred years ago, His church, to whom he said nothing about collecting money for the spread of the gospel." "Missions established on Divine impression are no ways related to those formed by human calculation. When the Apostles traveled from Judea to Gentile regions, they collected from the Gentiles, and brought the alms to the poor saints in Judea; but now the poor saints in Judea are taxed to aid the missionaries when they go." In 1829 he wrote: "In 1755 Daniel Marshal and Shubal Stearns, moving southward, preached and formed a church of sixteen members on Sandy Creek, Guilford County, N. C. In the south part of Virginia, North and South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee and Kentucky, there are more than a thousand Baptist churches, now existing, which arose from that beginning. These missionaries had neither outfit nor annuity. The providence of God, the prayers of the saints, and the benevolence of those who were taught by them, carried them through." "Children are now exhorted to cast their mites into the missionary treasury, with encouragements that every cent may save a soul." "Bibles, Tracts and Magazines are much more abundant now than formerly; but it is a serious question whether Biblical knowledge is equal to what it was fifty years ago." "Sabbath Schools are very fashionable, and are considered by many as the great lock-link which unites nature and grace together; but those among whom I live and labor are without them; and they say that, if the Sabbath is holy time, it ought not to be profaned by acquiring literature." "I would never worship a day, and make a Savior of it; but worship the Lord, in spirit and truth, every day; and publicly assemble as often as duty called and opportunity served." "Some seem to say, 'The eleventh and great commandment, on the observance of which hang all religion and good order, is, 'Remember the first day of the week, and keep it hypocritically: the six following days may labor, laughter, lying, cheating, drinking, gaming, reveling and oppression be done, by day or by night, according to the inclination of the individuals; but on the first day of the week shall no labor or recreation be done, save only that men may salt their cows in the morning, sleep in time of service, talk about politics, fashions and prices at noontime, read newspapers after service, and pay their addresses at night.'" "For many years of my life I drank no spirits. During recent years, with increasing infirmities, I have used about a gallon per year. A spoon-bowl full is as much as I use at a time, and the times of drinking are not frequent." "Internal religion is always the same, and always will be. So many religious novelties have lately sprung up that I have often exclaimed, 'They have taken away my Lord, and I know not where they have laid Him.' But this alarm has been quieted by, 'What is that to thee? follow thou Me.'" In 1827 he writes: "I now have eighty-two descendants living, including children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. A few of my posterity have died at their respective homes; but I have never had a coffin or a death at my house." In 1830 he writes: "Every child has left me; myself and wife keep house alone. We have neither Cuffie nor Phillis to help or plague us. My wife is seventy-seven years old, and has this season done the housework, and from six cows has made eighteen hundred pounds of cheese, and two hundred and fifty pounds of butter." In 1831 he writes: "We have nine children, seven of whom have made a profession of religion." "When convicted of sin, I found that I could no more believe, come to Christ, and give up my whole heart to Him, than I could create a world; that, unless I was drawn by the Father, all the exertions of my natural powers of body and mind could not bring me to the Son; that, unless I was born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God, and saved by grace, I must sink into hell." In 1836 he writes: "Would not a new translation of some passages in the New Testament, according to our present dialect and customs, be acceptable? In Mt 10:7 read thus: And as ye go, preach to the people, Your money is essential to the salvation of sinners, and, therefore, form into societies, and use all devisable means to collect money for the Lord's treasury; for the Millennium is at hand. In Mr 16:16 read: He that has attended Sunday Schools, had his mind informed by tracts, contributed to support missions, and joined in societies to support benevolent institutions, shall be saved; the rest shall be damned. In Mt 10:17 read: Be ye wise as serpents in your guile to deceive men; keep out of sight that ye have to receive part that you collect for your mendicancy; show great concern for poor benighted heathen, but let your neighbors have none of your prayers, exhortations or alms; but strive to appear harmless as doves; put on gravity and holy awe; make others believe that ye are too devotional to labor for a living, and that they must labor to support you; for if you do not appear uncommonly holy, you will not deceive the simple and get their money. In Ac 4:34-36 and Ac 6:3 read: The convention appointed a board of directors; any man who would cast into the fund one hundred dollars should be one of them for life, to dispose of the money at discretion, and mark out the destination of the missionaries. In Ac 13:1-4 read: Now there was at Antioch a convention of Christians, and among them five directors; and as they fasted and prayed, they were moved to select two of them as missionaries; and when they had supplied them with a good outfit, and promised them liberal supplies, to make Christianity appear honorable among the heathen, they sent them away. As for Ac 20:33-35, 'I have coveted no man's silver or gold; ye yourselves know that these hands have ministered to my necessities and to them that were with me; I have showed you all things, how that so laboring ye ought to support the weak,' etc.-these sentences are so little used in this day of great light, that a new translation is unnecessary. The new version of Mr 16:15 would read: Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature-if they will give you three hundred dollars a year they would want two or three or more times that amount now. Ac 5:42: And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ-for five dollars a week. Ac 11:26: And it came to pass that a whole year they assembled themselves, and taught much people-for a stipulated sum of two hundred and fifty dollars each, for the year. Ac 9:38: They sent unto him two men, desiring him that he would not delay to come to them-and they would handsomely reward him." "If any grades of collegiate education are essential prerequisites to the ministry, why does God not call those who are already in possession of those prerequisites? Is it reasonable to believe that a wise God would call a man to preach, when He knows that he cannot do the work until he has studied how to decline nouns and conjugate verbs three or four years?" "In this day of boasted benevolent institutions, which cost hard labor and millions of dollars to support (called the morning of the Millennium), but little reliance can be placed on the words of the seller, and less on the promise of the buyer." "For nearly fourscore years I have heard a continual lamentation among the aged, crying, '0 the times! 0 the manners! the customs and manners of the people are greatly depreciated from what they were when we were young.'" Elder Leland was providentially blessed with a wife of great industry and patience, faith and fortitude, trained in the school of adversity from two years of age. Her trials were many and severe, especially during the Revolution, when she was often left alone for weeks with her little ones, far from neighbors, her husband gone, with very little prospect of pecuniary reward, and while abandoned characters were roaming through the country. "Many a long hour she plied her needle by moonlight to prepare clothing for her little ones, fearful lest the ray of a lamp from her window might attract a bloody foe." She died in 1837. On January 8th, 1841, Elder Leland preached, from 1Jo 2:20,27, his last sermon-a very sound and spiritual discourse. He was taken ill that night with pneumonia, and lingered six days, though with little pain. The day of his death his prospects of Heaven were clear; they had been clouded the day before. To a young preacher who called early in the evening, and said that they were going to hold a prayer-meeting, and asked whether he had any advice to give, he said: "If you feel it in your hearts, I am glad. Forms are nothing." To the same preacher he said: "Bury me in a humble manner. I want no enconiums; I deserve none. I feel myself a poor, miserable sinner, and Christ is my only hope." He passed away in perfect peace, January 14th, 1841.
 

BIRTH

BIRTH
By Doris Webb Smith

   Most people in the west Tennessee area who’ve visited the Jackson-Madison Co. Hospital have probably heard the “chimes” (Brahms Lullaby) played when the new babies are born. They may do this in other hospitals but the first time I noticed it was when my husband was a patient in Jackson and I spent a couple of days and nights there. I asked why this pretty music came through the speakers quite often and was told they do this each time a baby is born. Every time I heard these beautiful chimes I was amazed to think of another new born taking its first breath and crying out because of LIFE. I wished I could have seen each one and held it for a short while. These little ones are being born at any moment all over the world. Whether it be a cold, stormy midnight hour or during the bright sunshine at noonday.

   I thought of spiritual birth in human hearts in the same way. God steps into the soul and the new creature cries out because of spiritual life. Their Father takes them into his arms, holds them, and gives them support for all the days ahead. It could be the baby of an African savage or of a college professor at a well known university. Maybe it suddenly transpires in the heart of a young child in a small church or in the heart of an old man in a prison cell. In the morning or evening as traffic swirls by in New York City or Moscow, someone’s eternal birth has occurred and made him a new creature.

   Isn’t this miraculous? I can just imagine that some beautiful chimes are playing an eternal melody each time at the Master’s touch.

  --Doris Webb Smith, Milan, TN

BLESSED ARE THE PEACEMAKERS

BLESSED ARE THE PEACEMAKERS

Written By Elder Herman Clark
Iuka, Mississippi

        Not once did I ever enjoy seeing a fight while attending school all the years of my young life.  Witnessing some boys that went around the school playground, and especially when there was visiting schools during certain school functions, it seemed on every occasion there were troublemakers.  Their main goal in life was to start a fight.  Most of the time, they showed their great skill of being a bully by picking on someone much smaller than themselves. 

        When I was in the third grade, my family and I moved to Arizona.  I had not seen a Mexican, nor had I ever met an Indian.  Being a “runt” most of my life, and not knowing how to protect myself against the bullies, set up a target for the bullies to showoff in their episodes.

         I hated bullies then and I despise such today. On a certain occasion a white kid, much larger than I, threw me to the ground for no reason at all except to show his great abilities to hurt someone smaller. This was not a fight but his opportunity to show off to the other kids. There was no chance for me to defend myself.  This is as plain in my mind this day as if it was happening at this moment.  In my mind I see the playground, the school, and the face of that white boy and I cannot erase it from my mind.  However, on that occasion the big bully was beating upon me, suddenly it stopped.  I shall never forget as I got up and looked around.  There were a Mexican kid, and an Indian kid, real friends that came to my rescue. The Indian boy was a large boy for his age and I do mean large.  He had reached down in removed the bully.  When the Indian, whose name was Emmitt Pablo, came around there was no bullying going on.  The Mexican kid’s name was Francisco Valenzuela.  We remained good friends for several years.  They were peacemakers. The bully was a trouble maker. I remember only the name of the peacemakers. I wonder if they have had a good life; I wonder if they are still living in the area of Coolidge, Arizona. That was in 1953-54, I have forgotten the date but not the names of my protectors.

         The Lord Jesus Christ said in Mt 5:9, “Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.”  Friends, I am so glad that Jesus referred to some as being “peacemakers.”  Notice, that there is no certain number given, but that they all are blessed.  I am glad that Jesus did not say “Blessed are the peacemaker…” (Singular), but said “Blessed are the peacemakers…” (Plural).  The word “peacemakers” is found one time in the scriptures.  It is in Mt 5:9.  It means pacific, loving peace.  Jesus said a peacemaker is Blessed.  A peacemaker is: happy: joined to names of God.

          This verse of scripture declares that the peacemakers shall be called the children of God.  Just think what a great blessing we have, having God’s grace upon us and a warm feeling in our hearts to be called a child of God. Seems like I take such a blessing ever so lightly.  Oh, a child of God! I do want to live my life to be a peacemaker.  There are some that are known in our day as troublemakers.  They disturb the little flocks of God’s Sheep scattered across the land. There must be peacemakers to bring flocks of sheep together. 

        It is easy to be a troublemaker but not so easy when it comes to reconciling two parties, to bring them together so as to be one.

        The greatest peacemaker is not from Washington, D.C., nor any state.  He is not from another nation across the globe, but from a far country called Heaven, His home.  This man, the Son of God and Son of man came to give and make peace.  Peace was made between two opposing parties. God was one and the elect family of God the opposing party.

    One man caused his entire lineage to be sinful.  This was by one man’s disobedience.  His name was Adam. This one breaking of the commandment of God brought death on the entire human race.  However the gift of one man, His obedience to His Father, God of Heaven, brought life for those that were reconciled unto the Father by His Son Jesus. Oh, what a wonderful peacemaker.  His name was and is Jesus Christ.  The apostle Paul said, “For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace;  And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:  And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh. For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father.” Eph 2:14-17

   Friends, Adam shut the door of peace to us, but Jesus Christ opened that door eternally on the cross and cried aloud, “It is finished.”  Do you believe in the finished work of Jesus?  I hope so, for outside that peace that Jesus has secured for us, there is no peace.  Men try to make peace in the world but The Lord gives peace to individuals. Blessed are the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God.    
 
   Elder Herman Clark

Blinded by the Light

Blinded by the Light

ox·y·mo·ron   n. A rhetorical figure in which incongruous or contradictory terms are combined, as in a deafening silence and a mournful optimist.

Saul of Tarsus was a powerful man among the Jewish religious leaders of his day.  In fact, he describes himself thusly: Php 3:5-6 Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, [of] the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee;  3:6 Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless.

Ac 22:3 I am verily a man [which am] a Jew, born in Tarsus, [a city] in Cilicia, yet brought up in this city at the feet of Gamaliel, [and] taught according to the perfect manner of the law of the fathers, and was zealous toward God, as ye all are this day.

His zeal was unmatched in the persecution of the early church.  Well versed in the law and the tradition of the fathers, Saul combined all of these things to obtain letters of authority from the Chief priests.  Ac 22:19-20 And I said, Lord, they know that I imprisoned and beat in every synagogue them that believed on thee:   22:20 And when the blood of thy martyr Stephen was shed, I also was standing by, and consenting unto his death, and kept the raiment of them that slew him.

Was Saul in Jerusalem during the Passover and a witness to the mobs before Pilate?  Did he stand afar off and view the crucifixion of Christ?  He was after all a devout Jew, likely to be in the Holy city as were tens of thousands of others at that time of year.  Jerusalem was his adopted city.

As far as the church was concerned, Saul was the most dangerous man in all of Israel.  He had not only the skill and experience of beating and imprisoning believers, he quickly obtained wider authority.  Ac 9:1 And Saul, yet breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord, went unto the high priest,   Ac 9:2 And desired of him letters to Damascus to the synagogues, that if he found any of this way, whether they were men or women, he might bring them bound unto Jerusalem.

 Ac 9:3 And as he journeyed, he came near Damascus: and suddenly there shined round about him a light from heaven:   9:4 And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?   Ac 9:5 And he said, Who art thou, Lord? And the Lord said, I am Jesus whom thou persecutest: [it is] hard for thee to kick against the pricks.

Oxen were moved and guided by a device called an ox goad.  Many describe it as a farming implement, but it’s also mentioned in scripture as the weapon that killed 600.   It was a long pole with several metal pointed spears (pricks) in a bunch at its end. Placed at the back of the leg of the ox or cattle, much as we might use a cattle prod today, it kept the animals from backing up, forcing them to continue forward.  As it applied sharp pointed pressure to the back of the leg, it was nearly impossible to kick against it.

Blinded by the light. Light brings darkness.  Saul went instantly from being the most powerful man in Judea to the most helpless.  Can you imagine what it must be like to be suddenly blind?  Unable to take more than a step in any direction for fear of falling into a ditch, stumbling against a rock, falling into a body of water, or crossing the path of a quiet serpent?  Quickly subdued, Paul now had to turn unto the men he commanded to beg for assistance.  Ac 22:11 And when I could not see for the glory of that light, being led by the hand of them that were with me, I came into Damascus.

Ac 9:6 And he trembling and astonished said, Lord, what wilt thou have me to do? And the Lord [said] unto him, Arise, and go into the city, and it shall be told thee what thou must do.   Ac 9:7 And the men which journeyed with him stood speechless, hearing a voice, but seeing no man.  They stood speechless.  A newly blind Saul must have had to cry out in panic for them to help him.  Ac 9:8 And Saul arose from the earth; and when his eyes were opened, he saw no man: but they led him by the hand, and brought [him] into Damascus.   Ac 9:9 And he was three days without sight, and neither did eat nor drink.

And for three days, he probably didn’t move.  Three days and nights in a dark location, that’s an interesting scenario.  Saul either sat in a chair or lay on a bed in a strange environment, unable to see, and not knowing what was at his left hand or his right.  All he saw was his own darkness. The light that blinded him was also the one showing him his very depravity. How poetic for a man to be cast down from his lofty position by the very one he was persecuting.  For three days and nights, a blind, weary Saul cried, prayed, and saw every sin he had ever committed.

Ac 9:10 And there was a certain disciple at Damascus, named Ananias; and to him said the Lord in a vision, Ananias. And he said, Behold, I [am here], Lord.   Ac 9:11 And the Lord [said] unto him, Arise, and go into the street which is called Straight, (How fitting the chief of sinners be put on the straight street) and enquire in the house of Judas for (house of Judas – that puts Saul’s treachery against Jesus in perspective) [one] called Saul, of Tarsus: for, behold, he prayeth,  Behold, he prayeth.  Indeed.  This self righteous man, Pharisee of Pharisees, probably truly prayed for the first time in his life.  Praying now to the very Christ he battled against hours earlier.  Isn’t that our case?

But soon, prayers about sin, depravity and current conditions give way to prayer with the Spirit, and some understanding begins to come to Saul.  The light that brought him darkness – and brought his darkness to light, now is instructing, healing, imparting grace, wisdom and mercy and bringing life and immortality to light. The light that shined round about at noonday and brought Saul to the earth now shines from the inside out.

Ac 9:12 And hath seen in a vision a man named Ananias coming in, and putting [his] hand on him, that he might receive his sight.   Ac 9:13 Then Ananias answered, (Lord, you don’t know this man – he’s evil-- he’ll harm me!) Lord, I have heard by many of this man, how much evil he hath done to thy saints at Jerusalem:   Ac 9:14 And here he hath authority from the chief priests to bind all that call on thy name.  Have we ever considered the response of Ananias?  Speaking with the creator of the universe, telling Him he was afraid of what Saul might do unto him!!?  Even as the Lord has told him of Saul’s vision and what is to come to pass, he still shows a fear and lack of faith.   Ac 9:15 But the Lord said unto him, Go thy way: for he is a chosen vessel unto me, to bear my name before the Gentiles, and kings, and the children of Israel:  Ac 9:16 For I will shew him how great things he must suffer for my name's sake.   Ac 9:17 And Ananias went his way, and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said, Brother Saul, the Lord, [even] Jesus, that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest, hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight, and be filled with the Holy Ghost.

Ac 9:18 And immediately there fell from his eyes as it had been scales: and he received sight forthwith, and arose, and was baptized.  Saul’s experience was sufficient to convince him he was not only dealing with the Lord, but had been dealt with by the Lord.  Immediately he set about to show the answer of a good conscience by water baptism.  Saul wasn’t showing his conscience was clear, but understood the good conscience placed in him by the Holy Spirit required answer.

 Ac 9:19 And when he had received meat, he was strengthened. Then was Saul certain days with the disciples which were at Damascus.  Our strength comes from the meat of the gospel.  Saul had received instruction from God and had it confirmed by Ananias.  Now he was ready to show forth the light that illuminated him.  Ac 9:20 And straightway he preached Christ in the synagogues, that he is the Son of God.   Ac 9:21 But all that heard [him] were amazed, and said; Is not this he that destroyed them which called on this name in Jerusalem, and came hither for that intent, that he might bring them bound unto the chief priests?   Ac 9:22 But Saul increased the more in strength, and confounded the Jews which dwelt at Damascus, proving that this is very Christ.

Paul thought he had perfect light on this new Christian sect that was causing the Jews so much trouble.  The true perfect light blinded him, and then opened his eyes.  We all sing the line in Amazing Grace I once was blind, but now I see, but Paul was blinded and given sight to see and understand his depravity in a new light and with those eyes, seeing his own sin, was able to explain to us how clearly God sees our sin.

Brother Royce Ellis

BOLDNESS vs ARROGANCE

There is a difference between arrogance and boldness.  Paul had boldness because he was in the Spirit.  A man may be arrogant in the flesh.  He may be very brash.  He may appear to be very strong but it may all be from himself - may all be because of his own determination to make his point.  If a man speaks in the boldness of the Spirit, the Spirit of God will use what is spoken to convict those who hear and to make a difference in their life.

BOND SLAVE

In Ro 1:1 when Paul says that he is a servant of Jesus Christ, he says "I’m a bond slave of Jesus Christ" You remember in the Old Testament where that if a person sold himself to be a slave to someone else, to be a servant because he had become poor and was unable to provide for himself, he might sell himself to a neighbor to be a slave and depending on what particular year that was -in the year of Jubilee he was free to go. But if he had a good master and he realizes that he is the same person that he was before he sold himself into slavery and if he was set free he would probably wind up in the same position and if he had a good master he would commit himself for life and that master would take him to the door post and there he would bore a hole through his ear and that was a sign that he was a servant for life. That’s what David was saying here, {in Ps 116} he says "I’ve found a good master -under sin I became poor, unable to care for myself but I have found a good Master in Jesus Christ and I am going to be a servant for life. That’s the right response to make." "My service to Jesus Christ is not temporary, it’s a life-time commitment to Him." "I am thy servant..."- Ps 116:16 Any other response is beneath the dignity of God -any other response is beneath the dignity of God. Any other response to what God has done for sinners than to commit oneself to Him for life as a servant is beneath the dignity of what God has done. "I’m Thy servant, I’m not a hired hand, I’m a servant. I’m in it for the duration." The Psalmist said I will go among the Lord’s people and there I will spend and live my days among them and I’ll offer the praise of thanksgiving to Him for that which He has done for me.

Elder Bobby Poe

Book of Job - sermon by Elder Ronald Lawrence

This morning I'd like to speak to you on what I consider one of the most important books of the Bible for a lot of good reasons and I'd like to speak to you this morning concerning the book of Job and I'd like to begin with actually a statement made about Job found in the book of James over in the New Testament.  The fact that James refers to the book of Job or refers to Job himself shows the authenticity of this book and how it was recognized by the early Church and early Christians as being a book that was given by the inspiration of God.  But in Jas 5:10-11 he says "Take my brethren the prophets which have spoken to you in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction and patience, for you have heard brethren of the patience of Job" and he's here telling us that Job is one of those prophets that has spoken in the name of the Lord and is an example once again of suffering affliction and patience.  If you'd ask the average person what they know about Job, they'd probably associate him with sufferings, and that would be correct.  But, there's a lot more to the life of Job than just that.  some of the most important things found in the Bible from a doctrinal point of view is found in the book of Job.  Now, once again, he says "Take, my brethren, the prophets who have spoken unto you in the name of the Lord for an example of suffering affliction and patience.  Behold we count them happy which endure."  Then he says "take our servant Job, for example.  He specifically identifies Job as one of those he's talking about in the 10th verse.  He said, "And consider how the Lord is pitiful and of tender mercy.  And, as we study the book of Job, one of the lessons we learn from it is what James tells us over here in Jas 5:10-11 - that Job is an example of suffering affliction and patience.  But God also displayed His tender mercy in being a God that is pitiful toward His children.  We learn those lessons from the book of Job.  Now, the book of Job is quoted in 1 Corinthians 3 and 19 by the Apostle Paul.  Paul said, "For the foolishness of men - the foolishness of this world, you know, God takes the foolishness of this world rather and he quotes then from Job 5:13, where he said that "God takes the wise in their own craftiness."  So, the Apostle Paul recognized that the book of Job was a book that had been written by Divine inspiration.  We find Job mentioned two other times in the Bible, both in the book of Ezekiel.  Ezekiel is hundreds of years down the road from the life of Job.  But in Eze 14:14 and also in Eze 14:20, we find where the Lord brings Job to our attention along with 2 other men - one is Daniel and the other is Noah.  Now, when He is writing this or having Ezekiel write this, the nation of Israel has backslid greatly.  They're in a very low condition, so to speak, in terms of their relationship with God at this particular time.  Generally speaking, there's a principle in the Bible that generally speaking, we receive blessings because of others.  It teaches us that others may receive a blessing because of us.  But in this case here, you're going to find where the Lord said that even if Job and Daniel or Noah were living right now, they would be delivered because of their righteousness but I would not deliver anybody else.  That's getting really low, but these 3 men here - they're so outstanding - men of faith against Job, Daniel and Job, if they were living in the day that Ezekiel is writing this, he said they'd be delivered for their lives and their righteousness, but I would still bring judgment upon all the inhabitants of the land.  So, that tells you 2 things, it tells you the terrible condition that Israel was in at this particular time but it also tells you what outstanding men these 3 men were - again, that's Noah, Job, and Daniel. 

The book of Job is considered to be the oldest book in the Bible.  I think that is important for a number of reasons.  When I say the oldest book - you know, you don't start off reading the Bible with Job - you start off with Genesis.  Job's over here in the collection of books with Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and the Song of Solomon.  They're referred to categorically as the poetical books of the Bible.  That's why Job is placed over here.  But in terms of the age of the book and the times and period that Job lived in, it's considered to be the oldest book in the Bible.  Job, himself, probably lived a contemporary of Abraham and, of course, in the days of Abraham, the Bible had not yet been written and I think that's pretty amazing when you consider some of the things that we hope to take a look at this morning concerning Job and the things he said and was blessed of God to pen down.

Being the oldest book of the Bible (that means again - in the time period Job lived).  He lived before there was any kind of ceremonial law.  He lived before the moral law was ever given in the Ten Commandments.  He lived, in other words, prior to the time of Moses and the penning down of the Old Testament.  Obviously, he lived in the time before the gospel Church and the gospel kingdom was established.  So, Job lived in the time when there was very little revelation of God outside of nature itself and whatever revelation God may directly have given to people like Job in that particular day, so, I want you to remember that.  So, the book of Job is the oldest book considered  by many to be in the Bible and the land of Uz where Job lived was probably Southeast or Southwest of the Dead Sea in Northern Arabia.

We are told several things about Job that's very important in the very beginning.  The Bible tells us that Job was a perfect man.  The Bible tells us that Job was a man that feared God.  We are told that Job was an upright man and eschewed evil.  The word "perfect" simply means mature and complete.  It does not mean sinless.  Job was a perfect man from the standpoint that he was complete and mature in his walk with God.  The Bible says that he was upright.  That word "upright" literally means straight, but it means morally straight.  So we are talking about a Godly man here in Job.  And then it says that he was a man that feared God.  Now, according to Ro 3:18, man by nature does not fear God.  There is no fear of God before their eyes.  So, I have a question here - who taught Job to fear God?  He doesn't have the scriptures.  He does not have gospel preachers around him.  He does not have prophets around him.  He does not have the oracles of God whatsoever - in any way whatsoever.  So, who taught Job to fear God?  Well, Job was taught to fear God by God.  Anybody that fears God is taught to fear Him by God.  I cannot teach you to fear God in your heart. I can teach you the importance of the fear of God.  I can teach you how you come to fear God and the very fact that we in our walk should display a reverential respect or fear for God, but I cannot teach you in your heart to fear God.  Man by nature does not fear God.  So, how in the world did Job fear God?  Well - there's only one answer to that and that's God Himself.  He's the One who teaches all of His elect to fear Him.  He's the only one that can teach them to fear Him, because Job, again, lived in the time when there were no prophets around him.  He did not have the benefit of the scriptures - Old Testament or New.  There was no preacher around him, etc. etc. yet it plainly tells us by God, Himself, that Job feared God.  And then Job eschewed evil.  Now, I don't hear many people going around using that word "eschewed" - so it pays to kind of look a few words up.  That word "eschewed" there means to refrain from - means to turn from and to reject.  So, here's what we got about Job.  We've got Job as a mature man in his walk with God.  He's complete in that way.  We find that Job fears God and he only fears God because God taught him in his heart to fear Him.  That's the only source that teaches people to know God and to fear Him.  He's also a man that eschews evil.  He refrained from evil - he rejects evil - he turns from evil - he avoids evil.  This word is used over here in 1Pe 3:10 in the New Testament.  Peter starts this off by saying "He that would love life and see good days" .... let me just ask you before we go any further - would you like to love life and would you like to see good days?  If you would, then you need to turn to 1Pe 3:10-12 and there's the recipe for it or the formula for it.  He said that "he who would love life and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil and his lips that they speak no guile."  Peter starts off with the problem of the tongue and the problem of the lips.  If you want to see good days - if you want to enjoy life, you'd better exercise some restraint with this tongue and these lips here.  "He that would love life and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil and his lips that they speak no guile."  It says, "Let him turn from - let him eschew evil, (that is - turn from evil - refrain from evil - turn away from it - avoid it) let him seek good and turn away again from evil.  Now, I want to look at the word "evil" just for a moment, because that word is used over 600 times in the Bible.  About 631 times, the word "evil" occurs in the Bible.  And most people when reading that word "evil," they just seem to automatically think it means sin or wickedness - but far from it.  There are times that it does, but oftentimes it has nothing to do with wickedness - has nothing to do with sin itself.  Oftentimes it has to do with God's judgment.  It has to do with the unpleasant dealings that God - when God deals with somebody, the unpleasantness of it.  When God chastens you, that's not very pleasant.  When God sent His judgment on Israel and other nations, that was not very pleasant.  In the book of Amos, the question is raised in Am 4, "Is there evil in the city and the Lord hath not done it?"  Now you know that word "evil" there can not mean wickedness or sin, because God is not the author of wickedness or sin or even confusion.  But, Amos is talking about the judgment of God there.  Can there be evil or judgment in the city and God hath not done it?  But to give you just a very clear example of this, you need to go to the book of Jonah.  In the book of Jonah - 4 little chapters over there - as you come to Jon 2 - you'll find at this point, of course, where Jonah has already been vomited out on dry land by the whale.  He's decided it's better to obey God than to not obey God.  It's better to do what God says than to not do what God says.  So, now he makes a very swift trip down to Nineveh and begins to preach to them.  And he begins to preach repentance to them.  The King and everybody in that city takes heed to the message.  This is very interesting here.  Here (I've never read a more successful sermon than this one - I've never read a more successful sermon than the one Jonah preached to the city of Nineveh, because everybody in the city of Nineveh repented, from the King, right on down to the lowest servant) - you'd have thought that would have made Jonah a very happy man, wouldn't you?  You'd have thought that Jonah would have been very happy and jumping up and clicking his heels saying, "Man, oh man - the Lord blessed my efforts today - everybody is turning around, everybody is repenting, but not so with Jonah, because Jonah didn't like Nineveh.  Jonah didn't like the inhabitants of Nineveh.  And, so we come to the last verse of Jon 2 and his response of the King and all the inhabitants of the city of Nineveh.  It says, "Let us turn away from our evil way, but who will know if God will not repent of the evil He has spoken of us to do?"  Now, the word "evil" is used twice here, once in connection with the people and their lives and once with God.  But, obviously, the evil associated with God is not the evil associated with the people.  Let us repent and turn from our evil way, our ways of wickedness, our ways of sin - because that is why God had sent Jonah down there to begin with, was to bring this message of judgment.  But we do not know but God will be pleased to turn and repent of the evil that He hath spoken concerning us to do.  Well, as it turns out, God did do that.  God saw the repentance of this city - He saw the response that they gave to Jonah and God is going to spare them.  And, Jonah is not happy about that.  Jonah wanted God to burn them up.  He wanted God to send bolts of lightening and take care of the situation instantaneously.  And, we don't have time, of course, to go into all the lessons of Jonah, especially how God then dealt with Jonah going outside the city, setting under the tree there and God brings the gourd over his head, etc. etc., but God does teach Jonah some very important lessons concerning his own attitude that he had in that situation.  All I want out of that is the fact that the word "evil" is used twice there - once concerning the behavior of the people and once concerning God's actions towards the people, that was unpleasant to the people and that He exercised what He had planned to do in the very beginning.  Alright, we come over here again - here's what is said about Job.  It said Job was a perfect man- that is, complete and mature.  Job was upright, morally speaking.  He was an honest and truthful man.  Job was a man that eschewed evil.  That means he turned from evil, he refrained from evil, he avoided evil.  And, then we are told that Job was a man that feared God.  And the only reason anybody ever fears God is because God puts the fear of God in their hearts.  When they are born of the Spirit of God, we find that they now have an attitude towards God that they did not have before.  And, God is the only One that can put that attitude in there.  Alright, Job lived before there were any articles of God, before there was any prophets, before there was any law given, etc. etc.  One of the evidences that Job is the oldest book in the Bible is because there is no mention of anybody in the book of Job that we read about in other places in the Bible.  There is no mention of Abraham or Isaac or Jacob or David or Solomon, etc.  There is no reference to the law, no reference to Moses, no reference to the ten commandments - no reference to the law whatsoever.

And, of course, Job is going to have some friends to come along that he is personally going to tell them that they're physicians of no value and they are miserable comforters.  Now, you know, that with friends like that, you don't need enemies, as they say.  I believe they were his friends - and we'll get into that just a little bit later.  As we begin to study the book of Job, I want to remember again that it's the oldest book of the Bible.  So, put that in your mind as you begin to consider the things under consideration here.  You're going to find that Job is a man of great integrity.  He's a man that is honest, a man that is truthful.  He's mature in his walk with God.  He eschews evil.  He's a man that fears God and he's a man that God has blessed abundantly.  Job is a man who experiences immeasurable blessings, but also immeasurable sufferings.  But, if you start reading the first parts of Job 1, we find the blessings that God has bestowed upon him.  We find that he's got 10 children, he's got 7 sons and 3 daughters.  We find that he's got 7,000 sheep.  He's got 500 oxen, 500 she-asses.  He's got 3,000 camels and a very great household.  So, he's got a lot of servants.  So, this man has been immeasurably blessed, greatly blessed, by his creator God.  And, then we find that Job rises early in the morning.  Now, when you begin to look at that expression of rising early in the morning, it can be found many times in the Bible.  In Ge 22, God tells Abraham to take his son, his only son, Isaac up to the mountain that I will show thee and there I want you to offer him there upon that mountain.  If that commandment had been given to me, I would not have had any desire to get up early in the morning.  I'd have wanted to have procrastinated I am sure to put that off just as long as possible.  The Bible says that Abraham arose early in the morning.  We find that expression used over and over and over again.  It is used in the lifetime of the Lord Jesus Christ concerning Christ Himself - that He arose early in the morning.  That was a very commendable trait then and it still is - that people rise early in the morning.  You know, there's a beauty of the sunrise - there's a beauty of the sunset.  Most people will certainly comment upon the beauty of the sunset but very few can comment on the beauty of the sunrise any more, because they don't see the sunrise.  They don't get up in time to see the sun rise.  But, that was something men and women did on a daily basis.  Back in the early biblical days, they arose early in the morning.  It was considered to be a sign of laziness and slothfulness if you did not.  Job rises early in the morning and Job is going to make an offering.  And this is something else to notice.  Of course when Moses comes along and institutes the law, we find that the law involves a lot of offerings, and burnt offerings  and sacrifices, etc.  But we find prior to that time that offerings were still being made in the days, say of Abraham, in the days of Job and they did it as the head of the patriarchal family - the head of the family did this.  Abraham did this and we find in Job chapter one where he does this.  Notice why he did this - because his sons had been involved in a time of feasting.  They invited their sisters to their houses for a time of feasting.  Job offers burnt sacrifices on behalf of his children because he is somewhat concerned they might have turned from God.  So, he's concerned about his family.  Job is the head of his family - that's very clear as you read the book of Job.  He's got a wife, he's got 10 children, he's got all the substance I've already mentioned.  Job was the head of his family.  Job made offerings, burnt offerings and sacrifices on behalf of his children lest they turn their heart away from God.  In other words, he is interceding on their behalf.  Now, we come to a point where the Lord and the Devil are going to have a conversation.  It says, there came a time when the sons of God came before God and Satan was in the midst of them.  And the Lord asked Satan this question - "Hast thou considered my servant Job - there is none like him in the earth."  Now, that is a mighty strong statement to be made about somebody, but Job is not making that about himself.  This statement is made about Job by God Himself.  So, I know this is a true statement.  He says there's not a man on this earth like Job.  He's the greatest man of the East.  In the area where he lives, there is none greater than Job.  He's the greatest in the East - there's not a man like him, not a man like him.  Now, you might use this expression - there's none like him.  It could be from a negative point of view but obviously what God is saying about Job is from a positive point of view.  There's not a man like Job.  Alright - the Devil then says to the Lord - He says, well you have blessed him, you have built a hedge around him - around his household - around all his possessions and that is why he is serving You.  That's what the Devil tells God.  He's serving You because of the abundant blessings You have bestowed upon him.  Well, I'd say that's a proper reason to serve God - the fact that we're highly blessed.  Wouldn't you say so?  Should we not honor God because of His blessings in our life?  That is true, but that should not be the main purpose - the main purpose should be that we love the Lord and the Lord has been good to us alright and now we're serving Him out of gratitude and thanksgiving, not just because of His blessings.  That's what the Devil tells God concerning Job.  He says, that's why he serves You, that's why he worships You like he does - you've built a hedge around him.  Well, the Lord says unto the Devil - He says, do unto Job as you will, only lay not an hand upon him.  And then, Satan goes off to do to him like the Lord gives him liberty to do.  We find a messenger coming to Job and the messenger says that the enemy came and destroyed the camels and took away the servants and I only am left to come and tell you.  And then the Bible says - and another.  You will find that expression "and then another" three times.  You're going to have 4 events - in between these 4 events, the expression "and another."  You wonder where the expression came, "one thing after another?" - probably from right here in Job 1.  But I want to ask a question here this morning of you and myself, "have you ever had a series of another's to compare to the series of "another's" in Job's life?"  Anybody ever come to you and give you a message like Job got?  Job got the message that a portion of his substance that God had blessed him with had been taken away and his servants had been destroyed watching over them except for one.  And while he was yet speaking, another came with a similar report.  Another portion of his substance that God had blessed him with had been taken away and destroyed and the servants except one and he was left to come and bring the message.  Each time there was one left so there'd be one left to bring the message to Job.  And then another came and then another came.  We've gone through some things in this year and I know all of you have in one time or another in your life where you have used the expression, "well, it just seems like it's just one thing right after another."  And I've thought about that and to me that just describes life - it is just one thing after another.  And what have you just gotten through with, don't get relaxed because there's another coming - there's another coming.  And Job never had a chance to even sit down.  He didn't have even the chance to sit down because another messenger came on top of that messenger and says and another and another and another.  By the time the 4th report comes, we find that Job no longer has his substance.  Job no longer has his children.  What's going to be Job's response?  Let's just read the response this morning in the latter portion of Job 1:20.  "Then Job arose and rent his mantle and shaved his head and fell down upon the ground and worshipped."  Would that have been your response?  It is very common in Old Testament days that when you were going through grief to repent in sack cloth and ashes or if you were returning away from the way that you'd been living and saw the light and you are going to repent - that you would show that repentance by shaving your head and renting your mantle and sitting down in ashes.  When it came to experiencing grief, that was a common way to do it.  Job does that.  Notice again and rent his mantle - just tore it - that means his robe, shaved his head, fell down on the ground and worshipped. It's been my experience over the years that when people go through some hard times that they seem like they feel like it's too much to go to Church.  "Well, you know, I just don't feel like going to Church today."  And, the very place that you need to be is in the House of God.  The very place that you need to be is in Church.  What did Job do here?  What did David do in his life when he got the message, you know, about the son that he had by Bathsheba?  He finally understood that the child had died.  What did David do?  David arose and he shaved and he rent his mantle just like Job did and he went to the House of God and he worshipped.  It's important to be in God's house in any circumstances but when you're going through grief - when you're going through sadness - when you're going through problems and trials and tribulations, there's not a greater support group in this world than in the Old Baptist Church.  That's how you're able to share one another's burdens.  Have you ever been just cast down and low and you go to Church and before Church even begins, when you walk upon the Church grounds, you begin to see the people gather - your spirits start rising and you walk in and the first person you shake their hand, you get a hug from some people.  I guarantee you'll get one from Sister Judy Hingle - she's a hugger.  But, anyway, all of a sudden you just feel better, don't you?  You feel better.  Well, you wouldn't have felt that way if you had just stayed at home.  Well, that's what the Devil wants you to do.  And then when you're blessed to sit down in the pew and you're able to join together with the saints of God and begin to sing the hymns of Zion - first thing you know your mind is taken away from your problems and your troubles.  The first thing you know, the pain that you had before you got to Church, you're not even thinking of - it's still there - you just don't think about it.  And if God will bless you and the preacher together - give you liberty to hear and give him the liberty to preach and the gospel is proclaimed and declared, the first thing you know you don't think you've got any troubles at all.  And, you wouldn't have had that experience if you'd had stayed at home.  My opinion has always been this - if I'm feeling bad that I can feel bad as well at Church as I can at home.  So, I'll just go to Church and feel bad.  Because my experience has been that once I get to Church then all of a sudden that I don't feel as bad as I felt before I got there.  So, Job demonstrates here a kind of attitude and spirit that we all want to have.  He arose, he rent his mantle, he shaved his head and fell down on the ground and worshipped.  And then he makes a very profound statement.  He said, "Naked came I out of my mother's womb and naked shall I return thither.  The Lord gave and the Lord hath taken away.  Blessed be the name of the Lord."  How many of us could say that?  If we'd gone through the experience which Job had gone through - lost our material possessions, lost our family, we could say the Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away, blessed be the name of the Lord?  I'm telling you Job had the kind of spirit, the kind of attitude and the kind of outlook that I hope and pray that I might have at all times in my own life.  And then notice the last verse, "In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly."  Job did not sin in his response.  He did not charge God foolishly.  If he'd charged God with this, it would have been a foolish thing, but he didn't do that.  Now, see, it's hard for me to relate to Job because I've never gone through anything to compare with Job.  I don't think you have and that anybody in life ever has, because when God gives us an example, He gives us an example that you cannot exceed.  But somebody says, "But Brother Lawrence you just don't know my case."  That's true, but I know Job's case.  Are you comparing yourself to Job?  Have you gone through some things like Job?  Well, no I've not gone through things like Job.  Well, ok then, I know Job's case.  Now, the Devil has been proven wrong by God.  The Devil said that the only reason that he worships You as he does is because You've hedged him in with all these abundant blessings but listen to what he says to the Lord in this second conversation.  For the third time we find recorded this about Job - he was a perfect man, an upright man that feared God and eschewed evil.  We're told that 3 times by God Himself.  Notice in verse 3, "And the Lord said unto Satan, hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth - a perfect and upright man - one that feareth God and escheweth evil and still he holdeth fast his integrity."  He's still a man of integrity.  He's the same man now as before all of this happened.  You said that he'd curse me to the face, but he did not.  And still he holdeth fast his integrity although thou movest me against him, to destroy him without cause.  There is no cause for this in Job's life - important to remember that.  And Satan answered the Lord and said skin for skin, yea all a man hath will he give for his life but put forth thine hand now and touch his bone and his flesh and he will curse thee to thy face.  And the Lord said unto Satan, behold he is in thine hand, but save his life.  Satan can cause a lot of misery in life.  Satan can cause a lot of destruction.  Satan is behind the scenes in many destructive things that are going on in this our society today.  But, don't ever forget this - Satan can never destroy the eternal life of the child of God.  He can never take one out of the hand of God.  You have eternal security in the hand of the Lord Jesus Christ - you are preserved in the precious blood of the Lamb of God.  Satan had freedom but not total freedom.  He was restrained and restricted by God in both cases.  So, here's what he does - Satan went forth from the presence of the Lord and smote Job with boils, from the sole of his foot to his crown and he took a potsherd to scrape himself withal and he set down among the ashes.  I'm telling you it's just hard to believe - hard to comprehend exactly how Job felt on this occasion.  The Devil comes along and he's going to smite Job with sore boils from the sole of his foot to his crown to where now Job is sitting in the ashes with a potsherd, which is broken pottery and he's scraping himself with it.  Then his wife comes on the scene.  You know, it's kind of bad to be in misery and to have somebody come along with a response like this.  Here's what she says, "Dost thou still retain thine integrity?  Curse God and die."  But he said unto her, "Thou speakest as one of the foolish women speaketh - what shall we receive good at the hand of the Lord and shall we not receive evil?" In all this did not Job sin with his lips.  Well, that tells me that we can sin with our lips, but Job did not.  Job did not sin nor charge God foolishly.  He did not sin with his lips.  Job rebukes his own wife.  It's bad enough to lose your substance, it's bad enough to lose your children and now your wife comes on the scene and says, "Why don't you just curse God and die - you still got integrity now?"  You speak like one of the foolish women.  Shall we receive not of the hand of the Lord, evil as well as good.  Remember what that word "evil" means.  Oftimes it has reference to calamity, judgment, etc.  What Job is really saying here to me is - we're no different than anybody else.  For why should we be spared some of the things we've seen in the lives of other people?  We've seen other people suffer, we've seen other people lose things, we've seen other people grieve and experience sadness.  What makes you think that we shouldn't experience the same thing ourselves?  Well, that's true.  There's no exception to this - no exceptions whatsoever.  Once again the Devil was proven out to be a liar and God won in this confrontation that's taken place at this point.  But the result is Job has lost basically everything, you know from the standpoint of his substance, his children.  He's still got his wife, of course, he's still got his life.  But then, Job's got 3 wonderful friends that decide they're going to try to come over and help him.  Notice this now, Job 2:11, "Now when Job's 3 friends heard of all this evil that's come upon him, they came every one from his own place.  There was Eliphaz, there was Bildad, there was Zophar.  They made an appointment together to come to mourn with him and to comfort him.  Here is why they came.  You know, I don't doubt their sincerity.  I don't doubt their intentions.  I think they were probably honorable and they're going to say a lot of good things about God and they're going to make mention of a lot of true principles of life but they had a mis-application of it - a mis-application.  And, we don't have time to go through the discussions here of these 3 men with Job but when it's all over with, Job says "you are physicians of no value.  You are miserable comforters."  I've had a few experiences along life's pathway with a few miserable comforters.  I've had the experience of having had a few physicians of no value.  What about you?  You know - I'm sure they meant well, had good intentions but somehow or another they don't think before they speak.  They don't.  You know, when I was getting ready to have my double-knee replacement surgery, I had this sister come up to me - not at Bethel Church, another Church and she said, "Well, I only had one done and I'm telling you it was terrible.  It was just bad and you've got the same doctor I've got."  Now, that was making me feel good.  I tell you, I just left that place and just couldn't wait to get the surgery started after the report like that.  Why is she telling me that?  I didn't need to hear that.  Karen's sister and Mitch her husband, getting ready to have knee surgery and he told his wife the other day - he says, "somebody told me they knew someone that had died when they had this surgery."  And I said, "yeah, and you tell him people have died giving childbirth.  People have died with tonsillectomies."  There's a risk with everything in life.  Why in the world do you want to tell people stuff like that for?  I don't understand that.  Anyway, these 3 men come to Job and the bottom-line is this - they charged Job with some hidden sin.  They charged Job - that the reason you're going through this Job is because there's sin in your life that you have not admitted to - that you've not confessed.  Now - Job defends himself and rightly so.  Now, some people have got the idea that if you're going through hard times, you've got some serious affliction, whatever, it's because you're living an ungodly life somewhere along the way and you've got some things going in your life that you have not confessed yet like Job.  That's not true.  Now, I can guarantee you this - a sinful lifestyle will bring physical afflictions upon your body.  There are many people suffering physical afflictions this day and sickness because of immorality - because of immoral living.  There's no question about that and some people have got the idea over here that if everything is going well in somebody's life, that's because they're living really close to the Lord.  The wicked oftentimes live long and have very few afflictions.  That's not true.  However, don't lose sight of the fact that the more you obey the commands of God and the laws of God, the better off you're going to be and the further you walk away from God, the worse off you're going to be.  Don't ever forget that.  That's absolutely true.  But they're charging Job here unjustly.  There is no secret sin in the life of Job.  Now, I just want to look at a few statements that Job makes that teaches some of the great doctrinal truths contained in the word of God this morning and some lessons that we should learn from the book of Job.  One lesson that you need to learn from the book of Job is the depravity of life.  Over here in Job 14:1, Job says, "Man that is born of woman is of few days and full of trouble."  He says in Job 7:6, "My days are like a post" (a post is a runner) (he's a man that took a message from one place to another and he ran).  He says, "my days are swifter than a post, like the swift ships of the sea and the eagle that hasteth to his prey."  When an eagle is soaring up there and he sees a mouse or a rabbit or whatever he wants to capture, once he zeroes in, he comes down swiftly from the skies to take captivity of what he has purposed to do.  And then Job says, "I see the ships out there" and you see one over here and the next thing you look and the ships a way over here.  The swift ships of the sea - he says, that's the way my life is.  He says in the 9th chapter of Job that my life is swifter than a weaver's shuttle - a weaver, the shuttle that he works on goes back and forth with real fast motion.  He compares his life to the wind, compares his life to a shadow.  All these things that are just here for a little bit and then gone.  The brevity of life is the lesson taught in the book of Job. 

Another lesson in the book of Job for us to consider this morning is the unreliableness of riches - how uncertain are the riches of this world.  There's probably not another man that had as much substance as Job did and yet, in an instant, Job lost it all.  You should not rely on riches.  We're told in many places in the word of God that we should not trust in the uncertain riches of this world but trust in God who giveth us richly all things to enjoy.  That's another lesson to learn in the book of Job.

We learn the lesson of depravity in the book of Job.  We go back again in Job 14:1 "Man that is born of woman is of few days and full of trouble."  We drop down to Job 14:4 and he asks this question, "who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean?"  Now, remember that Job is making this statement without having a Bible in front of him.  He's making this statement without hearing a preacher preach or a prophet prophesy.  But he asks this question, "who can bring a clean thing out of an unclean?'  If you start with something unclean, he's saying that it's impossible to get something clean out of it.  You just can't do it.  When it comes to human nature, when Adam transgressed God's law, the fountain of the stream was polluted.  It's been polluted ever since.  There's never been a person born into this world with a clean, perfect, sinless nature because they got their nature from the parents that they came from.  You cannot bring a clean thing out of an unclean.  That's a very, very easy lesson - it should be anyway for us to understand.  Everything in life teaches that.  You can't bring something clean out of an unclean.

We come to Job 25.  He asks this question, "But how can man be just with God?"  Important question - how can a man be just with God?  For, he says, he's not clean in his own sight, even the moon is not clean in His own sight and the stars, they're not pure.  When Adam transgressed God's law, even creation was affected.  The natural creation was affected and as beautiful as the sunrise is, the sunset is, as beautiful as the moon is and all the stars in heaven - as beautiful as all of God's creation is, I'm very convinced and totally satisfied that it pales in comparison of how it looked before the transgression.  Job says here that the moon and stars are not pure in His sight any more.  Job 9:1, "But how can man be just with God?"   He says that I know it's of a truth but how can man be just with God?  That's a very important question.  It's answered in the New Testament. How can man that is sinful, how can man that is depraved in human nature, how can he ever be just with God?  How can a thrice holy God allow anybody in His presence?  How can a God that's holy and the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, that is sinless and perfect and holy in every way - how can sinners, how can people like us ever stand in the presence of God?  That's what Job was asking.  The question is answered in Ro 8:33-34, Paul says, "Who is he that condemneth:  it is God that justifieth."  That's the only way man can be just with God.  He has to be justified by God Himself.  And, the Lord Jesus Christ came into the world to do that very thing.  Christ came as the just one who died in the place of the unjust.  He is the just One and He's the only One that's just.  There's only one that's just - that's God Himself and God in the person of the Lord Jesus Christ came down from heaven, lived a perfect, righteous, holy life here, went to the cross, made an offering and sacrifice to the Father on behalf of the family of God and now God sees His family through His Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.  That's about as simply put as I know how to put it and yet it is extremely profound how in the world that could take place.  Ro 5:6 "Being justified therefore by His blood" - that's how man can be just with God - not with the blood of offerings and sacrifices of oxen and sheep and that kind of thing.  All the blood that was shed in the Old Testament day never justified one sinner in the sight of God - not one.  But one man - the Lord Jesus Christ - who took our sins in His own body to the tree of the cross, He justified all the family of God in His offering and sacrifice which He made to the Father and not to man.  Christ never made an offering to anybody other than His Father in heaven.  He made an offering to Him on behalf of those whom He represented and the Father accepted - the Father received it and the Lord's people now are justified in the sight of God.  So, the question is answered by the Apostle Paul.  Job makes this statement and to me it's a profound statement when you consider all the sufferings of Job.  In Job 13:15, he says, "Though He slay me, yet will I trust Him."  You know what that's telling me?  That's telling me that I don't have to understand God or what God does - I just need to trust Him.  Ro 12:2 says that we should have our minds renewed that we might prove what is that good and perfect and acceptable will of God.  Three things about God's will:  it's good, it's perfect, it's acceptable.  I don't have to understand God, I just need to trust God.  I will never fully understand God in this life, but I should always trust Him.  I should trust Him as wisdom personified, who has all knowledge and understanding of all things and a God that cannot do any wrong whatsoever - I just need to trust Him.  He then says in Job 23:10, "Though He try me, I shall come forth as gold."  He says that "I esteem Thy words more than my necessary food." And, it says that He is of one mind and who can turn Him.  You know what it is saying in these verses here?  He's saying that God is sovereign, God doesn't change and God is going to work His will in the army of heaven and on all the inhabitants of the earth and none can stay His hand or say unto Him, "What doest Thou?"

And, then I bring my remarks to a conclusion from Job 23 when Job says, "Oh, that my words were now written, that they were printed in a book, that they were lead in a rock forever."  Well, Brother Job, your words were printed - they were written, they were printed and they've been lead in a rock forever, because we've now had them in our possession for hundreds of years.  But, what kind of words are you going to tell us Job?  "I know that my Redeemer liveth and He shall stand in the latter day upon the earth and though the skin worms destroy this my body, yet in my flesh shall I see God."  That statement is made by a man who did not have access to the word of God, who did not have access to the scriptures, who never heard a prophet prophesy, who never heard a preacher preach and yet God enabled him to pen these words down where he understood he had a Redeemer.  "I know that my Redeemer liveth," - He is personal to me, He's not just a redeemer, He is my Redeemer.  And you need to understand that this morning - that you have a personal redeemer in Jesus Christ.  Somebody who loved you personally and individually, died for you personally and individually, born you of the Spirit of God personally and individually and paid a ransom price on your behalf.  He is your wonderful, glorious Redeemer.  "I know that my Redeemer liveth."  This is what kept Job moving forward.  In the midst of his trials and tribulations, so much heaviness and grief that he had in his life, he never lost sight of the fact he had a Redeemer.  "I know that my Redeemer liveth and He shall stand at the latter day upon the earth and though the skin worms destroy this my body (yes, I shall die and my body shall go back to the dust from which it came) - and though the skin worms destroy this my body, yet in my flesh I shall see God."  He believed in a bodily resurrection.  If a man die, shall he live again?  Job 14 says, "All the days of my appointed time, for He shall call and I shall answer."  That sounds like New Testament language, doesn't it?  That sounds like language taken right out of the book of 1Co 15 and 1Th 4.  It cannot be any plainer, it cannot be any clearer.  Job said, "I've got a Redeemer, He's going to come again - even though my body is going to go back to the dust of this earth, yet in my flesh shall I see God.

Job - what a remarkable man.  No wonder God put him over here along with Noah and Daniel in Eze 14.  Remarkable man named Job - when you read Job, I want you to remember the setting.  I want you to remember the antiquity of the book.  I want you to remember what he didn't have that you've got and I've got and then we need to remember that he's an example of suffering afflictions and patience, and in the very end - never read Job without reading the last chapter.  In the very end, God blessed him with double what he had in the beginning - exactly twice as much as he had in the beginning.  God defended Job, rebuked his 3 friends, blessed him with double.  He lived an hundred and forty years after all this took place, saw his children's children to the 3rd generation.  Somebody says, "Well, Brother Lawrence, He didn't give him back but  sons and 3 daughters - that's not double."  Yes it is - the 7 sons and the 3 daughters, they're with the Lord in heaven - he's still got them and now he's got 7 more sons and 3 more daughters and double everything else.  So, we see the end of the Lord, don't we - how the Lord is pitiful and of tender mercy with all of us and He gives us this wonderful example of Job to teach us this very valuable lesson.

Born Again By The Word

Born Again By The Word
Written by Ben Winslett  

By the word of the LORD were the heavens made; and all the host of them by the breath of his mouth. Ps 33:6

Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever. 1Pe 1:23

'Word' in these two scriptures refer to the command of God Himself. As God, in the beginning, spake and the universe was divinely created, so He speaks and His children come to eternal life in Christ. We are 'His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus.'
Rather than being a spiritual evolutionist as is common today (believing that a man affects his Spiritual condition from death to life through his own volition and metamorphosis), I implore you to consider the Biblical model, Spiritual Creation! Sinners are not born again by the words of men or even the words of the Bible, but by the very Word, command, of Almighty God. Amen.

BOUGHT WITH A PRICE

BOUGHT WITH A PRICE
Article One—July 1972
By
Elder Floy Gross (Deceased)

   Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver, and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. 1Pe 1:18-19.

   For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit which are God’s. 1Co 6:20.
   Notice the expression, “ye are bought with a price,” and “ye are not your own.” The knowledge of this should inspire us to love and good works, and should also cause us to rejoice, for our text tells us whom we belong to; we belong to God. I like belonging to God, don’t you?

   But this fact, and knowledge of God’s ownership, carries with it very serious responsibility on our part, especially when we consider the price that was paid for us.

   The Bible teaches that we have sold ourselves for nothing. All the money in the world could never redeem a single one of us—the offense is against God, and all the wealth of this world rightfully belongs to Him already. “For thus saith the Lord, ye have sold yourselves for nought! And ye shall be redeemed without money.” Isa 52:2.

   The redemption price is the precious blood of Christ. The shedding of blood requires suffering, and as in the type, so in the antitype, the offering was slain. So in order to redeem us Christ was made to suffer and die. Our sins inflicted pain on the very Son of God, and since Christ declared Himself to be one with the Father, I think we can say they inflicted pain upon God Himself.

   I believe that nothing short of the blood of Christ was sufficient; when we consider the price of our redemption we can see something of the exceeding sinfulness of sin, and also of our value in God’s sight.

   If we ever feel ourselves useless, or of little value, let us consider our redemption price; and if we are fearful that the Lord will forsake us and cast us away entirely, let us again consider our redemption price. Does it seem reasonable that God will cast away such a valuable possession, or one which has been purchased with so great a price?

   Now the knowledge of these things should inspire in us a burning desire to “walk worthy of the vocation wherewith we are called,” and of our redemption price.

   Elder Floy Gross

From “Sovereign Grace” by Elder Floy Gross)

BRITISH ARMY DELIVERED

BRITISH ARMY DELIVERED

   In the summer of 1940 a Remarkable Providence was clearly seen when a British Army of some 350,000 in the Netherlands were surrounded by Germans and pressed into the coastal town of Dunkirk. It seemed utterly impossible for this army to escape destruction. Read the authoritative report given below:

   On the Sunday before the deliverance, in England, under the request of King George, multitudes of Christian believers were engaged in prayer to God for His succor in their desperate need. The channel that separates the Continent from England is noted for its boisterousness. But on the night in which in every sort of vessel that could be found the English troops embarked at Dunkirk it was as smooth as a pond. Though it is extremely unusual at that time of year, a fog settled down that hid from the multitudinous birds of death of the German air service the location and movement of the vessels. The British Army escaped what looked like certain demolition. Readers may remember a similar interposition of God that changed British history hundreds of years ago, when the enemy’s vessels, powerful and ready to strike, were driven back to sea by contrary winds. There is a God on high who made this earth, and without whose knowledge a sparrow does not fall. It is unfashionable now, even among a multitude of so-called Christians, to believe in such a God. This may explain why God is forcing nations to suffer, if perhaps they may be aroused out of their self-conceit and lack of faith. Britain prayed to God, and a few days later God wrested a large British Army out of the hands of a merciless enemy, who felt himself sure to conquer and destroy it! May God in mercy to His people break down and bring to nought the Satanic plans of the totalitarian powers of Europe to subject it and the world to their anti-God rule.

(From “Remarkable Providences”, edited by
Elder Harold Hunt)

BUILD ME A SON O LORD

BUILD ME A SON O LORD

   Build me a son, O Lord, who will be strong enough to know when he is weak, and brave enough to face himself when he is afraid; one who will be proud and unbending in honest defeat, and humble and gentle in victory.

   Build me a son whose wishbone will not be where his backbone should be; a son who will know Thee and that to know himself is the foundation stone of knowledge. Lead him, I pray, not in the path of ease and comfort, but under the stress and spur of difficulties and challenge. Here let him learn to stand up in the storm; here let him learn compassion for those who fail.

   Build me a son whose heart will be clean, whose goal will be high; a son who will master himself before he seeks to master other men; one who will learn to laugh, yet never forget how to weep; one who will reach into the future, yet never forget the past.    And after all these things are his, add, I pray, enough of a sense of humor, so that he may always be serious, yet never take himself too seriously. Give him humility, so that he may always remember the simplicity of greatness, the open mind of true wisdom, the meekness of true strength.

   Then I, his father, will dare to whisper, “I have not lived in vain.”

              --General Douglas MacArthur

From "Glad Tidings" June 2011

BUY THE TRUTH AND SELL IT NOT

BUY THE TRUTH AND SELL IT NOT

Written by Elder Herman Clark

Iuka, Mississippi

Truth is a very precious commodity. One of the things my dad taught me at a very young age was to always tell the truth. Some time it hurt to “shell down the corn,” in other words, tell the truth! Some people will climb a tall power pole to tell a lie rather than stand on the ground and tell the truth. Some people might stretch the truth. One cannot stretch the truth for the moment truth changes form it is no longer truth. Just think what this world would be like if every person on this planet would start tomorrow at 6:00 AM CST, telling nothing but the truth. We would see less turmoil on earth, less crime, less heartaches, troubles, broken homes, and trials. But I doubt that will ever take place on this sin cursed earth.

Where does a lie come from? Who told the first lie? It all begins in the garden east of Eden. It must have been beyond our comprehension. God had taken dust of the ground and made a body. He breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and man became a living soul. His name was Adam. God placed the man Adam in the garden and gave him instructions concerning the trees in the garden, Adam was to dress and keep the garden; it was later that God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam and while he slept God took one of Adam’s ribs, closed up the flesh and made the rib woman. God brought the woman to Adam. Adam and Eve were as one flesh because the woman was taken out of man.

There was someone else in the garden. He is referred to as the serpent. He was more subtil than any beast of the field which the LORD GOD had made. Here is where the first lie was about to be told.

God told Adam that he was not to eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for in the day he ate the fruit thereof he would surely die. The serpent came to the woman and told her the first lie ever told and guess what…she believed him. She ate of the forbidden fruit and then gave to Adam and he did eat.

The first lie consisted of adding one little word to the words of God. Men are still telling lies concerning God’s word. God said to Adam,”…In the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die.” The serpent’s lie was “…Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?” In Ge 3:4 we read “And the serpent said unto the woman. Ye shall not surely die.” One false word equals one lie. Satan added one word. It was the little word ”Not”. This little three letter word made all the difference in the world.

Jesus said in Joh 8:44 “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.” Now we don’t have to guess where the first lie came from or when it was first spoken. If, as the scripture stated, Satan is the father of the first lie then all lies must be of Satan. We need to remember this the next time we stretch the truth, no, it is simply “…we tell a lie.”

What has all that I have written in the foregoing paragraphs got to do with “Buy the Truth and Sell It Not?” Because not all that is spoken as the true gospel is the gospel. However, Paul says there is not “another” gospel therefore there can only be one true gospel. Joh 18:37-38 “Pilate therefore said unto him, Art thou a king? Jesus answered, Thou sayest that I am a king. To this end was I born, and for this cause came I into the world, that I should bear witness unto the truth. Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice. Pilate saith unto him, What is truth? And when he had said this, he went out again unto the Jews, and saith unto them, I find in him no fault at all.” Pilate asked a question but did not stay around to find out the answer.

The true gospel glorifies God and not man. The true gospel brings life and immortality to light. It does not give life, but tells how to have an abundant life while on a journey to heaven and immortal glory. The true gospel is as good news from a far country proclaiming to persons that have been born of the Holy Spirit, which now feel condemnation in the heart, feeling downtrodden concerning their sins, and that there is hope for heaven, feeling in his or her heart that surely I will be cast eternally away. This person can and does rejoice in the good news that Jesus Christ took their sins away to be remembered against them no more. This is the truth.

Solomon, the wise man of old writes in Pr 23:23Buy the truth, and sell it not, also wisdom, and instruction, and understanding.”

How does one buy the truth? He or she buys the truth without money or riches. There must be first a “yard sale” take place in one’s life. One must sell their own self-righteousness. Sell it to the garbage heap because all of our righteousness is as filthy rags in the eyes of God.

Buying the truth is a slow process. It is a price of sincere prayer to God to know the truth. It is a price of sincere studying the scriptures, studying to show ones’ self approved unto God, rightly dividing the word of TRUTH. It is a price of continuing in the worshipping of the Lord when the church doors are open for worshipping in spirit and in truth. It is being obedient to the commands of God. It is taking up our cross and following the Lord in water baptism, becoming an active member of the local congregation where the true gospel is preached and practiced according to the authority of God’s word and not by some men’s idea of new things needed in the church every time the sun rises in the east. It is searching for that pearl of great price and selling all that one has and buying the field. It is where liberty is found, not for the entertainment of the flesh but praise to the Lord. It is also a giving up of the things of the world. It is a partaking of the bread and wine in the communion service, and in so doing these things one is presenting one’s body a “…LIVING sacrifice, holy, and acceptable unto God which is your reasonable service.” Ro 12:2 Paul writes in verse 2 “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.”

As stated before, it is a slow process. Although it is a slow process, and a continuing steadfast in the doctrine and practice, it can all be lost in a very short time. When we willfully leave the things mentioned above, no matter what the case may be, we are selling out that which once was so precious to us. And that is the truth. Remember Satan is still around telling lies.

(From “The GOOD NEWS Newsletter”, Dec. 2005)

BW ***Bobby Willis

BW “Cast Thy Bread”

“Cast Thy Bread”

      Some people love to give while others only want to receive.  There is no guessing required to know which one of these would be pleasing to the Lord.  Giving to the church should be something we want to do, not something we feel is a burden.  Notice the words of 2Co 9:7 where Paul said, “Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.”  Financial support of the church is a responsibility of God’s children who have been blessed with a sweet resting place while living out our lives in this temporal world.  But, we also need to give freely of our time, effort, and prayers to the maintenance of the church so that it will be a healthy body of believers. 

       Ec 11:1 says, “Cast thy bread upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days.”  We often sing a song with these words and it always makes me pause and ponder the truths it holds.  In seeking to be disciples of Christ, casting our bread upon the waters is good admonition which points us in the right direction of keeping the commandments of God - Not in order to receive anything in return, but because of all the blessings He has already bestowed upon us.  We should endeavor to use this principle both in the church and in dealing with aspects of life. 

“Blessed are the saints who render,
Faithful services of love.
To the Lord’s dear little children,
As they seek those things above.

Blessed are they who give freely,
Of their substance, and their time.
for god loves a cheerful giver,
And their joy shall be sublime.”
(The Blessed Service Of Love - R.H. Pittman - J. Harvey Daily, Old School Hymnal, p. 148)

     If you are not “casting your bread upon the waters” it is a good time to start.  But, we must do so willingly, not expecting anything in return.  However, the promise of God is that we will be taken care of when the need arises “for he is faithful that promised” (Heb 10:23).   “Think About It!”

Elder Bobby Willis

BW “eschew evil, and do good;”

“eschew evil, and do good;”

       When I was a child, the fact that there was evil around was not unknown to me, it just wasn’t a part of my daily thoughts or life.   As a youngster, time was spent doing what chores were asked