Know Your Bible
There are varied ideas concerning "commandment keeping". Some think only in respect to the "10 Commandments"and teach a person must keep the ten commandments to be saved. Others believe that if you were to keep all God's commandments, you would still not be saved. Let it be understand that by "commandment keeping", I am not referring to the "10 commandments". We have already dealt with that subject in a past issue of this paper (Vol 9, No. 4, Jan. 00). Despite these conflicting beliefs, let's see what God has revealed on the matter.
KEEPING GOD'S COMMANDMENTS IS THE EXPRESSION OF MY FAITH. "Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone. Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works." (James 2:17-18).
KEEPING GOD'S COMMANDMENTS IS THE EXPRESSION OF MY LOVE. "He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him." (John 14:21).
KEEPING GOD'S COMMANDMENTS DETERMINES IF I AM TO RECEIVE THE THINGS I ASK FOR. "And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight. " (1 John 3:22).
KEEPING GOD'S COMMANDMENTS DETERMINES IF I ABIDE IN GOD'S LOVE. "If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love." (John 15:10).
Are we better than Jesus? He kept God's commandments. "If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love." (John 15:10). To those who believe that faith alone is what saves, let us realize that even faith is a commandment. "And this is his commandment, That we should believe on the name of his Son Jesus Christ, and love one another, as he gave us commandment." (1 John 3:23)
Which is it? Is commandment keeping essential or non-essential? What does the Bible say?
---E.R. Hall, Jr.
CAMOUFLAGED CLUB HOUSES
There was a time when religious people built houses to serve as meeting places for worship and the public proclamation of the gospel. It was understood that those (popularly styled "church buildings") were for a specific purpose, and there was little thought of turning them into anything else. The Lord's command for Christians to assemble necessitates a place. This gave authority for the church to make its own provision for a place to worship. Since meeting houses were generally paid for out of the church's treasury and were erected for the sole purpose of making it possible for Christians to assemble in comfortable, dignified surroundings to carry out the Lord's commands, it was generally regarded as improper for these buildings to be used for other activities.
Now it is different. We take the Lord's money and build a place to assemble, but we wear it out, not in doing what God has commanded the church to do, but in making it a center for social activities and entertainment. The modern "church building" is usually a camouflaged club house! In many cases it is equipped with a completely furnished kitchen, dining tables, a recreation hall, special rooms for club meetings and community activities, and other facilities in no way connected with worship or the preaching of the gospel. Moreover, the men who preach for churches having such houses know very little Bible. They are POLITICIANS, PROMOTERS AND PASTORS over picnics, parties, pageants, and popular pleasures.
Some think they are putting God into our daily living by turning houses of worship into community centers. What they are really doing is modifying religion, making it more worldly, to attract the masses. God ought to have first place in all that we do. Daily living should be Christ-centered. However turning houses built for worship into club houses, putting popular promoters into the pulpits, and using the church for worldly pleasures IS NOT GOING TO MAKE MEN MORE CONSECRATED TO CHRIST. We think we are converting the world to Christ, but what is really happening is this: CHURCHES ARE GETTING MORE AND MORE WORLDLY.
There is still a church in this community that places emphasis on spirituality. The church of Christ which meets at 112 Roberts Avenue in Wise, Virginia makes no apology that its humble meeting house is not equipped to be a club house. We do not regard the place of worship as sacred, but we do regard worship as a sacred thing, therefore, we intend to preserve the dignity of our meeting place for worship. The meeting house of the Lord's church IS NOT to be and is not looked upon by the community as a social center. It is not a hangout for party-loving teenagers. Passers-by never see any catering vans unloading at the rear door nor advertising on the marquee announcing concerts. The preacher doesn't know about fund raising, he is not a politician, and he is far from the most popular man around town. In fact, he doesn't even parade a lot of degrees after his name, nor does he have a holy handle on the front of his name; he does STUDY the Bible and earnestly preaches it.
The church of Christ is different from other churches. The chief difference lies in the fact that it is not ruled by its members, majority or minority; it is ruled by the law of Christ.
CAN A CHRISTIAN FALL?
We are often told that a Christian can't fall, that once he is saved,
there is no danger at all.
No matter how far he may lapse into sin, the gates will swing open
and let him pass in.
But let it be stated in language that's terse, that no one can cite the
book, chapter and verse.
Which teaches, the Christian can't fall away, and lose his soul in the
great judgment day.
His body, Paul tried to keep under his sway, lest he be rejected,
or be cast away.
And thus he set an example for all, that we may be warned not to
stumble and fall.
And when he harks back to the Israelite's day, when twenty-three
thousand fell by the way.
He issues this sobering warning to all, "If one thinketh he standeth,
take heed lest he fall."
In writing to Timothy, Paul boldly saith, that some have already made
"shipwreck of faith."
And Peter said, "Christians should watch every hour" for Satan is seeking
whom he may devour.
'Tis plain to be seen from what we have learned, that Christians today may
from the Lord be turned.
And those who still think a Christian can't fall, are not in agreement with
Peter and Paul.
---via, The Sentinel
HOW INTERESTING DOES THIS SOUND TO YOU?
A group of people that study only the Bible.
A group of people that only believes and teaches what the Bible says.
A group of people that worships God the way God has specifies.
A group of people that are more concerned with pleasing God than man.
A group of people that are more concerned about the needs of the soul than
they are about fellowship halls and church gymnasiums.
If this interests you enough, why not make it a point to come and visit at any and all of the services that are displayed on the page?
You would be an honored guest if you were to visit.
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