Know Your Bible

VOL. 5                           September 3, 2006                           NO. 33

"Close To, Round About, Or Nearby"

    One Sunday, the minister was giving a sermon on baptism and in the course of his sermon he was illustrating the fact that baptism should take place by sprinkling and not by immersion. He pointed out some instances in the Bible.

    He said that when John the Baptist baptized Jesus in the River Jordan, it didn't mean in - it meant close to, round about, or nearby. And again when it says in the Bible that Philip baptized the eunuch in the river, it didn't mean in - it meant close to, round about, or nearby.

    After the service, a man came up to the minister and told him it was a great sermon, one of the best he had ever heard, and that it had cleared up a great many mysteries he had encountered in the Bible.

    "For instance," he said, "the story about Jonah getting swallowed by the whale has always bothered me. Now I know that Jonah wasn't really in the whale, but close to, round about, or nearby, swimming in the water."

    "Then there is the story about the three young Hebrew boys who were thrown into the fiery furnace, but were not burned. Now I see that they were not really in the fire, just close to, round about, or nearby, just keeping warm."

    "But the hardest of all the stories for me to believe has always been the story of Daniel getting thrown into the lions’ den. But now I see that he wasn't really in the lions' den, but close to, round about, or nearby, like at the zoo."

    "The revealing of these mysteries have been a real comfort to me because I am a wicked man. Now I am gratified to know that I won't be in Hell, but close to, round about, or nearby. And next Sunday, I won't have to be in church, just close to, round about, or nearby. Thanks. You have really put my mind at ease."

---Dudley Ross Spears

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    Every Christian faces various problems in life. There are many trials and disappointments. There will be times of sadness, sorrow, and heartaches. At times, there will be clouds instead of sunshine. Jesus faced similar problems. In His life there were, no doubt, trials and disappointments. There were times of sorrow and sadness.

    In the garden of Gethsemane, Jesus was sorrowful and His heart was very heavy, but His disciples who were with Him went to sleep while He was praying. A little later Judas betrayed Him! While Jesus was being "tried", all the disciples forsook Him and fled! Peter denied that he had been with Jesus or even that he knew Him (Jn. 11:35; 12:27; 13:21; Matt. 26:36-75). In spite of these things Jesus, no doubt, rejoiced and had peace (Lk. 10:21; Jn. 15:11; 14:27). Over all, Jesus was a happy man! He had joy and peace!

    In spite of the fact that we face problems and disappointments and have times of sadness, sorrow, and heartaches, over all, we should rejoice, have peace and be happy!

    The Psalmist said: "But let the righteous be glad; let them rejoice before God; yea, let them exceedingly rejoice" (Psa. 68:3).

    Solomon said: "Happy is the man that feareth alway..." and "...he that keepeth the law, happy is he" (Prov. 28:14; 29:18).

    Jesus admonished His disciples to "Rejoice, and be exceeding glad..." when they were persecuted (Matt. 5:12; Jn. 15:11; 16:22).

    We learn from Gal. 5:22 that joy and peace are fruit of the Spirit. In Rom. 14:17 the apostle Paul declared that "...the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but is righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit." (Also read carefully, Rom. 15:13; Col. 1:11; Heb. 10:34).

    The apostle Peter teaches us to be joyful and happy! In 1 Pet. 4:13,14 he said: "But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ's sufferings; that, when His glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy. If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you..." (see 1 Pet. 3:14; 2 Pet. 1:6-8).

    We are commanded to rejoice! Paul said: "Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord..." and "Rejoice in the Lord alway and again I say, Rejoice" (Phil. 3:1; 4:4; Rom. 12:15).

    We should rejoice and be happy because of the abundance of material blessings God has given to us (Jas. 1:17) and because of the many spiritual blessings provided for us in Christ! (Eph. 1:3).

    Are you happy? You can be!

---Carrol R. Sutton

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***Sentence Sermons***

Getting accustomed to sin does not make sin

any less sinful.


We should rid ourselves of evil, not merely supervise it.


The Word of God is for our information and transformation.

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(Rom. 14:7)

Your life is Jesus to someone,

Though tattered and torn it may be.

Though often times weak and unstable,

You’re all of God someone will see.


Your tongue is Jesus to someone.

That idle, insensitive word

Reflects to at least one searching heart

An idle, insensitive Lord.


Your goals are Jesus to someone.

What you put first, they believe,

Are the goals of God for the Christian

Your life is all they receive.


Your faithfulness - that’s Jesus to someone.

Their judgment of how God is true,

Rest unquestionably in the faithfulness

They see day by day in you.


Your love is Jesus to someone -

That someone who is seeking to know

That Jesus will follow and guide and

Befriend wherever in life they might go.


So beware lest others blaspheme God

By what you say or do,

For the only Jesus that someone knows

Is the Jesus they see in you.

–Author Unknown

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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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