Know Your Bible

VOL. 14                                                                                                      August 30, 2015                                                                                                               NO. 25



I would like to publicly thank my twin sons, Zachariah and Isaac, for their contributions to the following article. Three years ago, when one of my sons was in the 9th grade, he shared with me that he knew of at least 20 of his peers that were pregnant that year or the previous year. As in other communities, clearly we have a problem in this community with teen pregnancy.

Why is it that so many teenagers are having sex resulting in pregnancy? It is my conviction that the answer to that question has its roots in so many factors, with each factor having its own multiple variables. But like any set of directions, we cannot ignore any particular factor if we truly want to solve the problem. 

My analysis of this problem and its remedy is moral and spiritual. That is, we must be willing to see the moral and spiritual nature of our subject. While most do not want to admit it, teenage pregnancy outside of marriage is ultimately a moral problem involving sin. Moral problems can only be correctly understood and addressed within the context of divine truth, the word of God. Therefore, I make no apology for affirming our need for God’s truth to help us solve the moral and spiritual problem of teenage pregnancy. 

God has given us the Bible to guide us in obtaining the remedies we need. If we refuse to consult and conform to the will of the Creator, we should not be surprised at our continual failures to solve societal problems which are rooted in personal sin. The heart must be changed for every moral and spiritual problem to be solved - including unwanted teenage pregnancies. So said Jesus (Mark 7:20-23; Matthew 23:24-26).

God’s simple answer is: Wait until you are married to have sex or don’t have it at all. Some may began to scream at this point that adults don’t follow this. But that only means that adults should start to obey their Creator by following his commands. But it seems that many teenagers and adults do not accept God’s answer to this problem. They do not accept it because:

1. The love of God does not mean as much to us. Because we did not count it a holy thing that the Son of God came down to earth, died shedding his precious blood for our sins, was buried and rose again giving everyone the opportunity to rise to live with God in a happy state of blissfulness forever. Jesus said, “If you love Me, keep My commandments.”  (John 14:15).

2. Because we do not believe that Jesus has gone to prepare a wonderful place for us. Where He is, we may be also. Thus we are not inclined to sacrifice (abstain from sex until marriage) for a life that is so short in comparison to the eternal joys of heaven. Think about his for a moment. 

If you knew that you were only going to stay in a place for a few minutes and then move to another place for 50 years, would you make the “pleasures” of the place of few minutes more of your focus than the one you would reside for 50 years? Jesus said, “For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works” (Matthew 16:25-27).

3. Because we fail to believe that no unrepentant fornicators, adulterers, homosexuals, drunkards, revilers or extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9-10). Or it may be that some do not realize that as all have sinned, all can repent and be washed (1 Corinthians 6:11).

When they confess their faith in Jesus and are baptized by the authority of Jesus it is for the purpose of the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:36-38).

4. Because we fail to accept that the excuse, “all sin” will not be enough for God. Because if “all” do not repent then “will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:2-5).

5. Because we fail to realize that though we may not be able to avoid unintentional sins, we can avoid all sins for which we are conscious before hand with the help of God! If when I am tempted to sin, is the Lord too far away from me to hear me pray, “Lord lead us not into temptation but deliver us from the evil.”? Is he too powerless to help me resist sin? 1 Corinthians 10:13: “No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.” So if we knowing commit sin, then it is simply an avoidable choice to disregard the wishes of the God who “so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him

should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

(To be continued in three additional parts.)

—Abraham Smith

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A very serious problem exists among the Lord’s people: sometimes their children who have been brought up "in the church" are anxious to "get out of the house" so they won’t "have to go to church" anymore. This is a perplexing problem fraught with serious consequences. Why does a child want to "get away from" the church? What kind of children from what kind of families do so? I don’t know all the answers to questions like this, but let me suggest a few thoughts.

I believe that one real source of this attitude is that children are not taught to love the worship of the Lord. From the time they are infants the parents are yelling at them on Sundays to "hurry up and get up ‘cause we have to go to church" with the emphasis on "have." Nothing is said about the joy of worship. Nothing is said about the wonderful privilege that is ours. Children are taught that "going to church" is a drudge. No wonder they want to get away from it.

When children are in the assembly, often they are allowed to play with all sorts of toys and games. This causes them to think that the assembly is some place to play games; and then when they are older and too big to play games, they are bored with what is going on. Many children are not taught to sing. They are allowed to play when worship to God in song is being rendered. If they are not taught to sing as tiny tots, then as they grow older they will not sing. Parents, do you teach your children the words to songs at home so they will know them and be able to join in the singing? It is a sad sight to see teenagers just sitting and looking around instead of singing. No wonder they have no interest. They are not taught reverence during prayer. They keep on playing instead of being taught to always bow their heads in reverence. If you took your child to the funeral of a loved one, would you give him games to play? Would you allow him to "do his own thing" or would you teach him reverence and respect for the dead? No, our worship is not a funeral, but it is holy and children need to be taught that it is.

They must be taught to study the Word. Are you studying the class lessons with your children every day? Are you teaching them to enjoy that part of the day and really look forward to it? If this is the environment of a child, you will seldom see him wander away from the Lord. Those who are taught to study the Bible are the ones who listen to sermons and lessons. They are the ones who will understand much more of the lessons that are being presented. (And, by the way, what happened to the teenagers all sitting at the front? What an inspiration that is to the whole congregation!) These are the ones who grow up to love the Lord and stay with Him.

Friend, what are you teaching your children? To love God and His worship, His word, and His people? What you teach your child, who is a tiny tot now, will determine where he/she will be when they are old. Seems like Solomon said something like that somewhere.

—Forest D. Moyer

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Know Your Bible" is e-mailed weekly by the church of Christ which meets at 112 Roberts Avenue in Wise, Virginia. If you know of others who might benefit from the articles contained in this bulletin, we would be glad to have you submit their e-mail addresses and we will include them in next week's mailing. If you are receiving this bulletin and do not wish to continue to do so, please e-mail us with your desire to be removed from the mailing list and we will remove your address promptly. Continue to the bottom of this page and further instructions will be given as to how you may contact us.

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