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2020 Is. . .

…A brand new candle, barely lit, that will burn itself out in twelve fleet months, another volume in our own book of life, full of blank pages upon which we shall write with our words and deeds, a fresh garment without wrinkle, soil, or tear, an open door, behind which many paths will beckon before the door is closed…

A Great Paradox

One might think that the soul that is shriveling and dying from spiritual starvation would experience a yearning for nourishment, but here is a great paradox: The soul that is stunted for lack of the necessary nourishment of the “solid food” of the Word of God (Heb. 5:14) is least likely to be hungering and thirsting after righteousness

An Abomination to God

On one occasion when Jesus was warning His disciples about the peril of riches and materialism, the money-loving Pharisees heard His teaching and ridiculed Him…

Abortion—A Continuing Abomination

However, even Hitler, Stalin, and Mao were small time operators beside the perpetrators and advocates of legalized, casual abortion in our “civilized” nation. In the forty-six years since the heinous decision of the Supreme Court was handed down (Roe v. Wade, January 22, 1973), 61,000,000 totally innocent, helpless, babies have been murdered…by abortion.

Abortion—43=59,000,000 

The Pharaoh of Moses’ time ordered that every male Hebrew was to be slain at birth (Exo. 1:16, 22). He is remembered in Scripture (and by all right-thinking men) as an unspeakably cruel, immoral, and evil man (Acts 7:19).…

A “Convenient” God

Two or three generations ago the vast majority of Americans believed in the one true and living God, Whose existence the universe declares (Psa. 19: 1–2) and Whose nature and will the Bible reveals (2 Tim. 3:16–17). These percentages have steadily changed so that most of our countrymen now seem to give little thought to God in any sincere way….

A Good Minister

Paul declared at least one trait of all who would be “good ministers of Christ Jesus” in 1 Timothy 4:6… Let us briefly analyze this verse…

A Gross Misapplication

“If thou shalt confess with thy mouth Jesus as Lord, and shalt believe in thy heart that God raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved” (Rom. 10:9). The foregoing words from the apostle Paul may be among the most frequently abused and misused in Scripture…

A Gruesome Anniversary

The Pharaoh of Moses’ time decreed that every male Hebrew was to be slain at birth. All civilized men consider him to be unspeakably cruel and immoral. We call the ancient Greeks who “exposed” their unwanted and helpless infants to wild animals and the elements “barbaric” and “inhumane.” Even atheists justly recoil at the jealous blood thirst of Herod the Great as he murdered Bethlehem’s baby boys when Jesus was born….

All He Asks Is All We Have

Why do so many people fail in living the Christian life? While many answers have been offered, I believe there is one overriding reason that fits every case. People have failed either to understand or have been unwilling to surrender to the central requirement of faithful discipleship: Jesus must be absolutely first in our lives….

All or None

In an article on OneNewsNow.com, Peter Heck reviewed recent statements by Rob Bell, identified with “the hipster emerging church movement.” Heck discussed Bell’s suggestion of universal salvation, which implies a denial of the existence of Hell. 

If one’s works are not the works God has authorized, they are all done in vain regarding God’s notice or approval (Mat. 15:9). That which God does not authorize, He does not accept or recognize.…

America’s Bible Roots

Dark forces in our nation are waging a powerful crusade to obliterate any connection between the founding of our nation and the Bible. That the men who wrote our Bill of Rights and Constitution…believed in God and…were greatly influenced by the teachings of the Bible—and of Christ in particular—is simply a matter of fact. 

America’s Moral Decay

Fifty years ago, lasciviousness, adultery, and fornication, were almost universally deemed reprehensible; they hardly raise an eyebrow anymore. New York Governor, Eliot Spitzer, was forced to resign in 2008 for patronizing prostitutes. CNN rewarded him with a TV contract in 2010.…

Animal “Rights” Extremes

Sadistic people visit cruel and senseless suffering on lower animal forms. Accordingly, there is a place for a voice against such. As is often the case, however, that which is good in moderation becomes bad when carried to an extreme. This has happened in the “animal rights” movement…

An Inspired Warning to “Change Agents”

Solomon long ago had some words of wisdom for all of those who think change for the sake of change is as necessary as breathing: “My son, fear thou Jehovah and the king; And company not with them that are given to change” (Pro. 24:21). Significantly, those who so eagerly urge change in our teaching and practice thereby demonstrate their lack of fear of Jehovah God.…

Anything to Be Different

Liberalism and disdain for the authority of the New Testament continue to infect brethren, and apostasy, the natural consequence of such, likewise continues to increase. A leading symptom of this phenomenon is the employment of terminology, which is ambiguous at best and anti–Biblical at worst.

There was never a more devilish doctrine than that doctrinal purity is unimportant. None can read the New Testament with an unbiased eye and keep from seeing this emphasis. It begins with such representative statements from the Christ as, “If ye abide in my word, then are ye truly my disciples”….

Are Men Stronger Than God?

Those who believe the Bible believe that God is all-powerful. “Is anything too hard for Jehovah?” (Gen. 18:14) anticipates a negative answer. Scripture refers to God as “Almighty” 59 times. Paul mentioned “…the exceeding greatness of his power” (Eph. 1:19). Truly, the Bible abounds with claims of God’s omnipotence.…

A Strong Church

“Be strong in the Lord” (Eph. 6:10) applies to individuals and churches alike. Assuming that we all want the church to be strong, what are (and are not) these sources of strength?

Atheism – Is It Reasonable?

All forms of atheism (e.g., anti-theism, naturalism, humanism, evolutionism, materialism) allege that Christianity is unreasonable and irrational—its adherents all dupes of “blind faith.” Atheists aver that believers in God, the Bible, and Jesus as God’s Son, are such not because of any evidence, but in spite of it.…

“Automatic” Membership Placement?

Through the years I have come across brethren who believed that merely visiting with a congregation for a few weeks or months thereby made them members, with no request on their part and no announcement to the congregation.…

A Virtuous Atheist

The young man was an avowed atheist. He described himself as “capable of pristine thought and speech… moral, upstanding, conscientious, ethical, loving, and forgiving…and trying to do what is right.” He went on: “My strength of will and my concern with the principles and rules of right conduct are profound and unwavering….”

Authority in Religion

Only two sources of authority exist in religion. Authority is “from heaven  [Divine] or from men [human]” (Mat. 21:25). Human authorities consist of such things as the rulings of one man or a council/convention of men, creed books, the majority vote of members, and personal conscience.…

“Balanced” Preaching

The quality of balance lends grace, order, and beauty to almost anything. The work of preaching the Gospel is no exception. God’s Word contains descriptions of the balance with which God wants His preachers to preach, and men had better not tamper with it.…

Baptism and Jesus’ Blood

With few exceptions, religious bodies professing belief in Jesus as the Christ, the only begotten of the Father, treat baptism as inconsequential. Some ignore it as if it were not in the New Testament, while others consider it “important,” but not essential to please God, with various views in between.…

Biblical Baptism-No, 1

Baptism has long been a subject of controversy, especially in respect to its purpose and its action. Uninspired men have written perhaps hundreds of books and millions of words about baptism. Many of these things we can read to our profit, but the only book on this subject that matters is the Word of God….

Biblical Baptism-No. 2

Mere men did not invent the Bible doctrine of baptism. Jesus, in the Great Commission (Mat. 28:19–20; Mark 16:15–16) is its author, and He alone has the right to specify its element, purpose, antecedents, action, candidates, and every other facet of it.

Biblical Baptism-No. 3 

“Will there be anyone in Heaven who has not been baptized?” When one stresses the New Testament’s clear teaching on baptism, a question similar to this often arises….

Biblical Baptism-No. 4

If one were to decide to concoct a plan, promising salvation upon that single act apart from all others, the most reasonable choice would not be “faith only,” which is what most of the Protestant world advocates. The book of Acts records more than one case of conversion in which faith is not mentioned…

Biblical Baptism-No. 5

Controversy over the Scriptural action involved in baptism has raged for centuries. However, all such controversy would end if all men respected the authority of the Bible. It explicitly tells us the action of baptism….

Biblical Baptism-No. 6

“Does the New Testament say what baptism is for?” Acts 2:38 states (KJV): “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins…”

Biblical Baptism-No. 7

Clearly, the Bible teaches that one cannot be saved by “works”: “For by grace have ye been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not of works, that no man should glory” (Eph. 2:8–9, emph. added). Just as clearly, however, the Bible teaches that one is saved by “works”: “Ye see that by works a man is justified, and not only by faith…

Biblical Baptism-No. 8

For failure to grasp the connection between baptism and the blood of Christ, many people woefully misunderstand the role of baptism in God’s plan. Those who understand this relationship do not question the necessity of baptism….

Biblical Baptism-No. 9

The Bible tells us, by implication, when one should be baptized. When the multitudes on the day of Pentecost heard the Gospel, Luke records the response as follows: “They then that received his word were baptized: and there were added unto them in that day about three thousand souls”…

Bible Baptisms Digest

The New Testament mentions several baptisms. Failure to understand and distinguish between them leads to confusion and error….

Be of Good Courage

Of all of Satan’s weapons, his favorite may be discouragement. It is certainly one of his most powerful weapons. He has used it relentlessly on the Lord’s finest servants…

Be Watchful and Resist

The New Testament frequently urges vigilance toward things that would spiritually hinder us. One of the clearest of these warnings is from Peter:…

Ben Franklin Spanks Tom Paine

Tom Paine was a colonial patriot, credited by some with being the “Father of the American Revolution.” He was given this moniker chiefly for his January 1776 pro-independence pamphlet, titled, Common Sense, which advocated revolution against the British crown. It quickly swept the colonies, selling 100,000 copies in three month’s time ….

Bible, Understanding the

Nothing is more obvious than that men who profess belief in the Bible do not understand it alike. Some believe this is inevitable or even good. If so, why does the Bible command that we “all speak the same thing and that there be no divisions among you” (1 Cor. 1: 10)?

Biblical Faith

Faith and belief (in their various cognates) are among the most frequently found words and concepts in the Bible. They are also among the most misunderstood and abused Biblical words. Without controversy, the Bible requires that all who would be saved from the condemnation of sin must possess faith in God and His Son:…

Biblical Principles for Making Moral Decisions

Confronting temptations to “cross the line” that separates moral from immoral behavior is as old as Adam and Eve. Temptation may involve money, deceit, pride, sex, power, or other elements….

“Big Tent” Religion

Members of both major political parties talk about “big-tent” policies. By big-tent they mean inclusion of those who hold views diverse from and/or contradictory to core party principles—if they will vote the party ticket…

“Born Again” Christians.

 “Born Again” is the title of a movie that was shown nationwide a several years ago, tracing the alleged “conversion” of one of the Watergate principals. It is not enough to be a Christian anymore. Unless one is a “born again” Christian, he apparently is only second rate.

Burger King and God

What do a hamburger corporation and God have in common? Nothing really, but BK and man’s conception of God is a different matter. Even among those who believe in God, most apparently think that He operates by the BK slogan: “Have it your way.” 

“Bye Bye Baby”

A few years ago Hayes Carll wrote “Bye Bye Baby,” a country music song lamenting a broken romance. This title would serve well for a song about the Pharaoh who ordered the death of all Hebrew baby boys…. It would also fit Herod’s decree that resulted in the murder of all the baby boys in and around Bethlehem…. Even irreligious folk right-y recoil at such inhumane blood lust….

Cafeteria Theology

Does God operate a theological cafeteria? Are all of the world’s religions (e.g., Buddhism, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, et al.) on His “steam table”? Is Christianity on the menu as merely one among many choices of access leading to God and salvation?…

Can Paperclips Talk?

Most folk believe that only human beings and parrots can talk, but that’s just not true. Although paperclips are not very high on the intelligence scale (and while they don’t actually form and speak words), they nonetheless can “talk.” What then do they say?…

Cart Before Horse

Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God (John 3:16), identified both the “horse” and the “cart” in regard to the respective obligations of all mankind: “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second like unto it is this, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself ” (Mat. 22:37–39).…

Christian Haters

The title above is admittedly ambiguous. It can mean “Christians who express hatred,” or it can mean “those who hate Christianity.” The latter meaning describes a growing “norm” of attitude and behavior. A broad-based coalition would banish every vestige of “Christianity” from our national identity.…

Christian Evidences

The Study of Christian evidences is the study of matters that give substance to the claims of the Gospel and its principal figure, Jesus Christ. Such evidences are usually divided into two major fields….

Christianity Comes in Cans

Are you aware that Christianity comes in cans? I am sure that I have met some people along the way who would be glad to “get some religion” if they could just get it in a small, inexpensive, easily-accessible package—like a can….

Christmas – That Time of Year Again

The birth of Christ is certainly among the most important (supernatural) events in the overall history of the world. It was/is a cause for great joy—something which God saw fit to have recorded in His Word. 

Church Growth

There is a principle observable that explains both rapid growth periods and non- growth periods: The fields are not equally ripe for harvesting everywhere at all times. Some places are “in season” while others are “out of season”…

Church Renovation

“Church Undergoes Renovation,” the newspaper headline read. The words were positioned above a photo of a church building surrounded by scaffolding, with workmen on its roof. The article described the modernization of a church building, which the article referred to in common—albeit mistaken—parlance as a “church.”…

Cleansing the Temple

When brethren decide they do not like some activity that is being practiced in the church building they will sometimes say, “We need to cleanse the temple” and cite these examples of the Lord…

“Come Forth, My People..”

When John heard the angel announce the impending doom of “Babylon,” another heavenly voice warned, “Come forth, my people, out of her, that ye have no fellowship with her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues” (Rev. 18:4)…. 

Compassion

Among the many attractive and ennobling traits of character urged upon servants of God and followers of Christ is compassion. Even those who possess no compassion admire and appreciate this trait in others.

Compassion Fruit Juice

Compassion means “to feel with.” The Gospel accounts frequently call attention to the Lord’s compassion….

Contributions You Can Make

Some members of the church are far too modest in their assessment of what they can do to help the Lord’s cause. Many have convinced themselves that they cannot do anything, since they cannot lead singing or preach, and they become quite content to do little or nothing. However,… 

Conversion Confusion

Conversion is the theme of the New Testament. It embraces redemption, forgiveness, and salvation—the purpose of Jesus’ coming. To “convert” means to change/turn from one’s present course. One’s salvation depends upon his conversion (Mat. 18:3; Acts 3:19), so we must understand the New Testament’s teaching concerning it.…

Criticism

Jesus warned that some would reproach us and say all manner of evil against us (Mat. 5:11–12). How should we respond to criticism?

Darwinism and Morality

Until about fifty years ago in America, lasciviousness, adultery, and fornication were almost universally deemed reprehensible. Divorce was shameful, pornography was underground, and homosexuality was illegal. These elements are now on open display and enjoy wide approval—and participation.…

Denominationalism

Denominationalism refers to a “denominational or sectarian spirit or policy; the tendency to divide into denominations or sects” (Random House College Dictionary). In religion, the term refers to the multitude (some count thousands) of religious bodies professing belief in Jesus the Christ as the only begotten Son of God….

Denominationalism in the New Testament

When Jesus said, “I will build my church,” the farthest thing from His mind was the prevailing denominational structure by those who would profess belief in Him. This structure includes Catholic, Orthodox, and Protestant institutions with their profusion of names, doctrines, and practices and their resultant sectarianism.…

Denominationalism or The Church

Thoughtful Bible students realize that denominational “churchianity” bears no resemblance to New Testament Christianity. It is not only fundamentally undenominational; it is anti-denominational….

Destructible Deities

When a Buddhist temple burned in a Texas city, the image of Buddha, their object of worship, melted. While none should rejoice in the property loss our fellow-citizens sustained, the melted Buddha provokes reflection on the great contrasts between Christianity and the pagan “world religions”…

Did Jesus Believe in Hell?

Hell has fallen on “hard times.” It is rarely mentioned except in a context of cursing, swearing, or deprecation. Some claim to believe it exists but profess to know no one sufficiently evil to deserve it….

Did Jesus Die in Vain?

The entire Christian system centers around the death of Jesus on the cross. He “died for the ungodly” (Rom. 5:6, 8). He “laid down his life for us” (1 John 3:16). In spite of numerous like statements of Scripture, certain things, if true, would mean that Christ died in vain….

Did They Do Rightly?

Is it a sin to forsake (abandon, intentionally keep oneself from) the public meetings of the church? Hebrews 10:25 bears directly on this question:…

Disinherited Children

Joan Crawford, the famous movie star of several decades back, left some of her children out of her will. Let it be observed, however, that such disinherited children do not cease to be the children or offspring of the withholding parents; they simply are left out of the will, cut off from receiving any of the estate.…

Divorce and Remarriage—Is There a Second “Exception”?

Other brethren view Paul’s words here (particularly v. 15) not as mere opinion, but as “expanded revelation” relative to Jesus’ teaching in Matthew 19:9 regarding divorce and remarriage.…

Doctrine and Unity

Some say, “It is not doctrine that unites us, it is love.” Scriptural unity surely involves love between the parties concerned, but it requires far more….

Do Numbers Equal Strength?

The Bible urges Christians to grow and mature in the faith and to thereby become strong (Eph. 6:10, et al.). What God desires for His individual saints, He also desires for the local congregations of His church….

Do You Love Jesus?

The apostle Paul lent significance to the question above as he wrote: “If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be Anathema…”

Doctrine and Unity

Some say, “It is not doctrine that unites us, it is love.” Scriptural unity surely involves love between the parties concerned, but it requires far more….

Early Postmodernism

“Postmodernism” is the ascendant philosophy. To mention postmodernism implies its antecedent, modernism. Modernism attempts to explain all things by nature.

“Easter” Season—From God or Man?

As sincere as many people are in their observance of Lent, Ash Wednesday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Easter (certainly so of Mardi Gras!), none of these has any Biblical origin or basis whatsoever. They rather reflect a blend of post-apostolic traditions and Paganism of the Roman Catholic Church, centuries too late to be Scriptural.…

Eating in The Church Building

The apostolic church enjoyed common meals in their places of worship, and these meals were formally designated by the term, “love feasts”….

Elders – Must All Have All the Qualifications

Among the clever and devious devices brethren have come up with to avoid the force and stringency of the pastoral qualifications is the claim that as long as the entire group of elders possesses all of the qualifications of Scripture, the qualifications are thereby satisfied.…

Emphasizing “The Basics”

Any time men stray very far from “the basics,” they fall far below their potential. A football team can have splendid athletes but neglecting crisp blocking and sure tackling neutralizes its superior athletic ability….

Enemies of the Cross

In the mildest of his epistles (in terms of rebuke and correction), the apostle Paul nonetheless warned the Philippian saints of “enemies of the cross of Christ” (3:18–19),… Notably, Paul here made the cross the apex, summary, and symbol of Jesus’ earthly life and work (His purpose in coming, His doctrine, His church, et al.).

Ethics and Morals

Fyodor Dostoyevsky wrote the classic novel, The Brothers Karamazov. Whatever else might be said of Dostoyevsky, he grasped one of the essential implications of Atheism, Humanism, and Naturalism. He had Ivan (one of his characters) observe: “If there is no God, everything is permitted.”

Faith in The Bible

Biblical faith is not mere wishful thinking, wherein one wishes for something so much he convinces himself it exists. This concept is one of “pie in the sky,” leap-in-the-dark desire with no reason or evidence for it. Biblical faith is not mere probability that God exists, Christ is the Son of God, or the Bible is the Word of God. This is agnosticism….

Fellowship and Family Members

Perhaps no Christian family has escaped seeing a family member depart from the faith, either in doctrine or behavior (or in both). When a husband, wife, son, daughter, brother, or sister falls away or becomes involved in doctrinal error or support of a false teacher, what are the faithful family members to do?…

Fickle Subjectivism

Our times are characterized by religious convictions based solely upon feelings and experiences. This phenomenon has always been a trademark of Pentecostalism, but it now infects and affects all of the sects (and not a few brethren, as well). Multitudes of religionists trust their eternal destiny to no more than what they like or their feelings….

First or Twenty-first?

A pressing question for all who are serious about Christianity is, “Did the Son of God intend for His church to remain in its inspired, apostolic form only for their time or for all time?” Does the assertion, We don’t need a first-century church, but a twenty-first century church, represent Biblical teaching or human opinion?…

Flawed Principles for Making Moral Decisions

Making moral decisions has to do with confronting day-by-day temptations and behavior options. Everyone operates by some set of “moral standards” that determine his/her behavior, even if they are immoral. Some of the faulty principles men follow are:…

Fools – Ancient and Modern

In Romans 1:19–21, Paul, the irrepressible apostle of Christ, described the Atheists, Humanists, and Secularists of ages past, declaring of them, “Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools” (v. 22). To such folk, he said that God had manifested His existence clearly in the things He had created. However, they rejected the abundant evidence in their vain and senseless reasoning, thereby corrupting their hearts….

Fornication and Adultery

Fornication and adultery were once, without hesitation, deemed “sinful”—forbidden by God and sources of shame and disgrace to the vast majority of US citizens. Lamentably, such behavior has become commonplace, promoted relentlessly by the industries of entertainment, advertising, fashion, and public education—and even some churches.…

Four Hearts

The title above doesn’t refer to a “hand” in a card game. Rather, it relates to Jesus’ parable about a farmer who sowed seed in his field (Luke 8:5–15). Of the thirty or so parables He told, this is one of the very few that He explained in detail. He tells us plainly: “The seed is the word of God” (v. 11)…

Freckles and Hairs 

The apostle Paul’s most frequently used term in reference to the church is “the body.” In using this expression he draws on comparative features in our physical bodies. We find the fullest exposition of this analogy in 2 Corinthians 12:12–27.…

From Heaven or From Men

Jesus’ once asked the Jewish rulers if the baptism of John was of Heaven or of men (Mat. 21:25). In doing so, he exhausted all possibilities. The wicked Jews knew better than to argue that there was a third possible source of authority. Every doctrine and practice in religion is either authorized by God—or it is human in origin.… 

Fully Armed

Because Satan is such a formidable foe, and we are so weak by ourselves, we must be well-armed. The armament which the Lord supplies is sufficient, both for protection and for attack….

God Cannot Do Some Things

The Bible abounds with claims of God’s omnipotence, yet because of His very nature, there are some things God cannot….

God Does Not Know Some Things

In numerous statements the Bible proclaims God’s omniscience—He knows all things (Rom. 11:33–34; 1 John 3:20b; et al.) In spite of these plain averments….

God…Hath Spoken

Hebrews 1:1–2 contains numerous points of Biblical Truth….

God, having of old time spoken unto the fathers in the prophets by divers portions and in divers manners, hath at the end of these days spoken unto us in his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, through whom also he made the worlds….

God Is No Respecter

In the house of the Gentile, Cornelius, the apostle Peter arrived at a dramatic conclusion for a biased Jew: “God is no respecter of persons, but in every nation he that feareth him, and worketh righteousness is acceptable to him” (Acts 10:34–35). He then did the unthinkable for a Jew, offering salvation to his Gentile audience through the Gospel….

Godliness Pays!

The Bible constantly exhorts its readers to godly living. The worldly-minded ridicule godliness, believing it only means hardship and deprivation. The Bible says it pays: “Godliness is profitable for all things…” and “Godliness…is great gain” (1 Tim. 4:8; 6:6). Millions who have tried it through the centuries know it is so. How does it pay?…

God’s Grace is Exclusive

While God wills that all men be saved (1 Tim. 2:4), this is the statement of his ideal will. His ideal will and His conditional will are not the same, however. He created us with free will, and our free will stands between these two….

God’s Grace is Inclusive

God does not desire that only some be saved, but He “would have all men to be saved, and come to the knowledge of the truth”….He is longsuffering, “not wishing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance”…. To this end, the Christ “gave himself a ransom for all”…

Good Worship Manners

The God we worship in our assemblies is not a God of confusion, but One who wants everything done decently and in order (1 Cor. 14:33; 40). Perhaps with a little more consideration for this principle, for others, and for our own behavior, we can improve our “worship manners,”….

Goodness and Severity of God

God was severe toward His chosen people, the Jews, because they “fell” in unbelief. In His goodness, however, He accepted the Gentiles because of their faith, but warned them that He would also reject them if they fell….

Grapes of Thorns?

In the process of warning about the grave dangers of listening to false prophets, Jesus said, “By their fruits ye shall know them. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?” (Mat. 7:15–16). Jesus made a spiritual application of this general, axiomatic principle.…

Have Miracles Ceased?

Many modern religionists claim the power to perform the same miracles and signs as those recorded in the Bible. Claiming and doing are two different things….

Have You Started Your Retirement Plan?

It’s important to realize that there is nothing un-Christian about preparing and planning for the future by saving some of our money today…However, with all the current emphasis on retiring comfortably in this life, is it possible that we are forgetting about another retirement that we all have to face some day?…

Heat and Light

During winter we are reminded of the need for heat. Without it we would freeze. As darkness approaches each evening we are reminded of the need for light. Without light, the ability to see would be useless and our eyes would eventually atrophy. For life to continue there must be both heat and light. What is true physically is no less true spiritually….

“Hell at Last!”

Concerning the unrighteous and the righteous, respectively, at The Judgment, Jesus Christ, the loving, merciful Savior, stated: “And these shall go away into eternal punishment: but the righteous into eternal life” (Mat. 25:46). To be consistent, denial of Hell demands denial of Heaven….

Here’s How…

A leaflet making the rounds purports to instruct us on the way to have “an eternal relationship with God.” The suggested four-point plan….

History Repeats

A century and a half ago, a few brethren who were determined to have what pleased them in religion were willing to sacrifice respect for both the statement and the silence of Scripture in order to have their idols (primarily musical instruments and separate evangelistic organizations).…

Holy Spirit Baptism

The New Testament describes only two cases of baptism in the Holy Spirit. The first occurrence involved Jesus’ promise to the apostles. Just before His ascension, the Lord told them to remain in Jerusalem where, said He, “…ye shall be baptized in the Holy Spirit not many days hence”….

Holy Spirit Baptism Q and A

Consider some common questions about Holy Spirit baptism and their answers from the Bible….

Honoring With the Lips

Pharisees and scribes once came to Jesus, chastising Him for not honoring the traditions of their forefathers (Mat. 15:1–2). He responded by accusing them of violating God’s commandments by their human traditions, and cited one of their traditions as proof (vv. 3–6).… 

How Does Your Garden Grow?

In the spring of year when many people just naturally feel like tilling soil, planting things, and growing things. The weather has turned warmer, the sun seems to shine more, and all of God’s wonderful creation has come back to life….

Humility and Service

In 1 Peter 5:5–6, we read the following significant exhortation: “Yea, all of you gird yourselves with humility, to serve one another; for God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace to the humble. Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time.”…

“I Commend unto You Phoebe”

Paul wrote to the Roman brethren: “I commend unto you Phoebe our sister, . . . that ye receive her in the Lord, worthily of the saints…” (Rom. 16:1–2). I conclude from this passage that as faithful saints move about it is both Scriptural and wise to take with them such a letter from respected brethren….

“If and Only If…”

The title above expresses a formula in logic and mathematics regarding compound statements (biconditionals). The formula (abbrev. as IFF) applies only when (i.e., “if and only if”) both statements are of exactly the same “truth value.” The IFF formula is a powerful way of expressing propositional facts and truths that are incontrovertible.…

Impartation of Spiritual Gifts

In 1 Corinthians 12:8–10, Paul listed nine miraculous “manifestations” of the Spirit. These gifts were scattered among various members, with some apparently receiving no gift at all (vv. 28–30). Since possession of these gifts was not universal among the saints, by what means were they imparted?…

Implications of Sin

Only a few decades ago, the majority of US citizens acknowledged the existence of and consequences of sin. A vast number of our citizens now deny sin’s existence—by their deeds, if not by their words….

Implied Principles for Making Moral Decisions

Every time we encounter temptation to do that which would violate our moral scruples, we must make a decision to resist or yield….

Impressed with Numbers

We notice it when a business or service attracts a large clientele. An advertisement recently stated, “15 million people can’t be wrong.” Likewise, when a religious group manifests rapid numerical growth in a short period, some say, “They must be doing something right.”

Ingredients of Evangelism

No subject is more vital to sincere saints than evangelism. Jesus made it our first responsibility when He issued the Great Commission  It is God’s means of saving the lost. It is the lifeblood of the church….

Intellectual Snobbery

The not-so-well-educated should not despise the well-educated, nor should the latter despise the former. Yet, so often those who obtain advanced degrees leave behind all of the humility they may have once had….

Involvement in Worship

In recent years there has been considerable discussion among brethren about getting more people “involved” in worship. No one will question that every Christian must involve himself in worship. I do question, however, what some mean by “involvement.”

Involvement in Worship

In recent years there has been considerable discussion among brethren about getting more people “involved” in worship. No one will question that every Christian must involve himself in worship. I do question, however, what some mean by “involvement.”…

“Is That All There Is?”

Jerry Lieber and Mike Stoller wrote a song thus titled, and Peggy Lee made a hit recording of it in 1969. Its lyrics somewhat reflected the cynicism and cultural breakdown our nation experienced beginning in the 1960s.…

Is the Apple Likely to Fall Far from The Tree?

Responsible parents are naturally concerned about how their children are measuring up in the competitive environment of school. They will make sure that their children view school as a high priority and will encourage proper attention to all the required assignments, homework, and tests. 

Is the Church of Christ a Denomination?

There seems to be a strong general tendency to refrain from taking a firm position on certain doctrinal and moral issues and to ignore even fatally false positions as minor matters. Several pulpiteers among us now deem themselves wise enough to improve on God’s plan for the church and for man’s salvation….

Is There a Second Exception for Divorce and Remarriage?

Many grievously misunderstand the nature of revelation/inspiration. Some aver that only the words of Jesus (those in red letters in some Bibles) are authoritative, and the remainder of the writers reflect their personal human opinions. The 1970s militant feminists labeled Paul’s doctrine relating to the God-given respective roles of men and women) as the mere opinionated rantings of a disillusioned, male-chauvinist, woman-hating bachelor—unworthy of credibility; He was not Jesus!…

“It Fills A Space”

I have been reading church bulletins more six decades. I have served as editor of church bulletins for over five decades. At one time, the mailbox of the church where I preached received approximately 150 bulletins each week. I have literally seen almost everything there is to be seen in church bulletins.…

”It Is Too Much…’

Many things have changed since these events of almost 3,000 years ago, but human beings still behave in many of the same ways and make the same mistakes, especially in religion. Consider some modern examples of “the Jeroboam syndrome” regarding the New Testament of Christ. “It is too much…”:

Jesus’ Amazing Cross

The centerpiece of God’s plan to redeem sinful mankind—yea, of history—is the cross of Jesus Christ. The Gospel is the “word of the cross,” which is “the power and wisdom of God” (1 Cor. 1:18, 23–24). Faithful preachers will preach the cross (2:2). Christians should glory in the cross (Gal. 6:14). The cross significantly demonstrates some extraordinary facts:…

Jesus’ Blood Keeps on Cleansing

Many years ago (when I was a very young preacher) I believed that unless one specifically named every sin he committed and specifically asked forgiveness of each one, as he became aware of such sins, God would not forgive them. Eventually, I came to see that this was an untenable (and unscriptural) position for various reasons:…

Jesus Has a Law

The affirmation of my title is offensive to many theologians and pulpiteers. Those offended often hurl the legalist epithet at the affirmers. “No,” they say, “We are not under law, but under grace, in the Gospel age.” …  Let us study this subject of eternal implications by means of some questions: 

Jesus – More Than a Man

One of the songs in the 1970s rock opera, Jesus Christ Superstar, has Mary Magdalene singing of Him, “He’s a man, He’s just a man.” This view of Jesus is by no means new but stretches back to the Gnostics of the late first century who denied His Deity. Some go beyond denying His Deity, opining that Jesus is a fictional character who never lived as a man….

Jesus or “JINO”?

Various cults and sects foreign to the New Testament claim to “believe in Jesus.” When their doctrines are compared with the Bible, however, their “Jesus” is actually a “JINO” (“Jesus In Name Only”). A case in point is the “Jesus” of the Mormon cult (“The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints”):…

Jesus—Our Perfect Role Model 

Either consciously or unconsciously, everyone has one or more role models whom he seeks to imitate. Jesus Christ alone has the right to be such because….

Jesus – Some “Why Nots” of His Coming

Jesus Himself tells us clearly why He initially came down from Heaven: “For the Son of man came to seek and to save that which was lost” (Luke 19:10). At various times He also stated several things that He did not come to do. These “why nots” are as significant as the “why” of His First Coming.…

 Jesus’ Amazing Cross,

The centerpiece of God’s plan to redeem sinful mankind—yea, of history—is the cross of Jesus Christ. The Gospel is the “word of the cross,” which is “the power and wisdom of God” (1 Cor. 1:18, 23–24). Faithful preachers will preach the cross (2:2). Christians should glory in the cross (Gal. 6:14). The cross significantly demonstrates some extraordinary facts:…

Jesus’ Testament

By means of a “last will and testament,” men indicate the desired disposition of their property at death. The title page of the latter section of our Bibles is called “The New Testament of Jesus Christ.” While uninspired publishers supplied this title page, the inspired text refers to itself as the will or testament of the Lord….

Jesus’ View of Scripture

Is the Bible a mere curiosity piece of superb, ancient literature? Is it an irrelevant document, good for its contemporaries, but now a mere relic without modern use or application? If we could sit down with Jesus and interview Him about the Bible, what would He say to us? Would His evaluation of it make any difference?

Jesus – Why He Came

In spite of the plainness of the singularity of Jesus’ purpose in coming to earth, men still misunderstand it. They have variously set forth such purposes as political revolution and healing the sick and ailing. Political liberals/progressives deceitfully invoke some of His words and works to bolster their program of socialism and social reform.…

John – Whom the Lord Called “None Greater’

Jesus gave unparalleled commendation to his kinsman, the prophet John: “Among them that are born of women there hath not arisen a greater than John the Baptist” (Mat. 11:11). Let us explore some possible reasons for this unique accolade.…

Judaism Restored?

One of the strangest facets of the dispensational premillennial system of theology includes a restoration of the authority of the law of Moses. According to this system….

“Judge Not…”

When Jesus said, “Judge not, that ye be not judged” (Mat. 7:1), he was not merely uttering good advice, but a prohibition, a strong negative command. Unless we understand what kind of “judging” the Lord prohibits, we will do much abuse to this passage.

Judgment Day Surprises

One of the recurring themes of the New Testament is that of the final accounting that all men must make before their Creator—The Day of Judgment. Jesus described it in some detail (Mat. 7:21–23; 25:31–46). The final New Testament book emphasizes The Judgment near its close (Rev. 20:11–15). Hardly a New Testament book fails to mention it.…

Laid Back, Hip – and Irreverent

The general abandonment of decorum in society over a couple of generations has obviously had its impact on the Lord’s people—especially observable in our worship assemblies. I preached in a Gospel meeting several years ago before which the local preacher told me that the brethren were “laid back” in the way they dressed for worship….

Law and Love

Priscilla Jane Owens (1829–1907) penned several hymn poems, among them, “Give Me the Bible.” She wrote these lyrics in the 19th century before it became popular—even among theologians—to debunk, demote, and attempt to destroy the authority of Holy Writ.…

Led by The Spirit

One is not a Christian unless he is led by the Spirit: “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are the sons of God” (Rom. 8:14). How does God lead His children through the Holy Spirit?…

Legalism or Love?

Those who do not want to obey the teachings of the New Testament often accuse those of “legalism” who dare emphasize obedience to God’s commands. Legalism is defined as “strict, or excessive conformity to the law.” In the religious context, this definition refers to God’s Law.

Lessons from The Flood

The flood’s effects are yet seen in such things as the topsy-turvy fossil strata, the strange angles of layered stone often seen in exposed mountain sides, and the like.The astute observer sees the more important effects of the flood, however, in the lessons it provides concerning the nature of God….

“Let’s Party”

It has finally come to this. A few years ago, a brother asserted that worship should be a party, a “celebration”…

Life Begins at Conception—So Abortion Is Murder

To the pro-death abortion advocates, the content of the womb is little more than a wart, an appendix, or even a tumor—thus disposable. The crucial question then is, when does life and human personhood begin?

Little Word – Big Meaning

Jesus once said, “We must work the works of him that sent me…” (John 9:4). “Must” refers to that which is necessary, indispensable, required, or obligatory. What are some things we must do?…

Lost Souls on Pentecost

The first Pentecost Day after Jesus’ ascension to Heaven found a throng in Jerusalem from “every nation under heaven” (Acts 2:5). Of that number, 3,000 obeyed the apostolic message by their confessed faith, repentance, and baptism in order to receive forgiveness of their sins (vv. 37–41).… 

Love Letter or Law

Is the New Testament merely a collection of “love letters” containing nothing more than polite suggestions of behavior?… Many professed believers parrot the view that the New Testament pertains exclusively to grace and love.… What shall we say to this averment?…

“Mainline or Sidetrack”

In a syndicated newspaper column a few years ago, William Murchison laid bare the insipidity of the liberalism of certain “mainline” Protestant denominations. He based his column on a poll involving the Methodist, Episcopal, and United Church of Christ (not to be confused with the church of Christ). The poll concluded:…

Making God in Man’s Image

The Mormon idea of “continuing revelation” (which various other religious groups also advocate) is about the most basic repudiation of the Bible as the Word of God that a man or a religious organization can make. Reduced to its simplest terms, it elevates the creature above the Creator….

Man Must Obey God

As the Israelites approached Sinai on their journey from the Red Sea to Canaan, they murmured against God. This time they complained because of hunger, accusing Moses of bringing them into the wilderness to starve. Their fickle hearts had already forgotten the rigors of Egyptian slavery,….

Man’s Ultimate Quest

All men are seeking something; this is what keeps us going. Various ones seek fame, riches, pleasure, peace, power, and other things. There is only one quest that towers over all others in importance and that should govern all other pursuits. Jesus Christ set it forth in the Sermon on the Mount:…

Man, Woman, and Marriage

Popularity, agreement with my notions, convenience, political correctness, nor any other factors affect or determine the meaning of its words to the genuine believer….

“Mark” and “Turn Away”

Paul’s final plea to the saints in Roman was for doctrinal purity:…This statement is not merely a polite suggestion, but an earnest entreaty with the strength of a charge, an order, or a command….

Marriage and Family, The Infallible Manual for 

For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and the two shall become one flesh? So that they are no more two, but one flesh. What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder….

Marriage, Man, Woman and

Whether or not one believes the Bible to be God’s Word, he should be honest enough to let the Bible say what it says. One forfeits any claim of integrity when he knowingly twists Biblical statements (2 Pet. 3:16) so as to make them appear to teach other than what they teach (often making the Bible thereby contradict itself).…

Marriages – Simple Reasons Why They Fail

When a marriage fails, it is because the people involved have failed in one or more important characteristics. Marriage works as God intended, only when both partners behave as God directs.…

Matters Demonstrated by the Cross

By far, the most enduring symbol of the religion of Jesus Christ is the cross. It so represented Jesus’ life, work, and death that the apostle Paul said it was the only thing he would preach and of which he would ever boast. The cross demonstrates several matters of great significance,…

Modesty

Paul commanded women to “adorn themselves in modest apparel” (1 Tim. 2:9). The Arndt-Gingrich lexicon says that modest here means “honorable,” “respectable.” We understand Paul to be talking about wearing clothing that indicates the moral chastity, purity, and sense of decency that Christians must have.

Movement in Transition

 Many of our churches are struggling with their identity, their mission, and their purpose. Scripture as well as church history teach us that we’re only one generation away from apostasy.” We offer a few observations ….

Murmuring at Marah

Exodus 15:22–26 gives the account of Israel’s murmuring at the bitter waters of Marah. At this very beginning part of their journey from the Red Sea toward Canaan, their water supplies were exhausted. They had hardly ceased their songs of thanksgiving and triumph before they raised a new cry….

My Aims as a Gospel Preacher

It is always helpful to have a roadmap when traveling, whether on literal roadways or on the journey of life. With this in mind, I present the following as the “map” I aim to follow in my life and work as a Gospel preacher:

My Way or God’s Way?

A survey has found that many Americans now take a mix-and-match, build-your-own approachin religion. Loyalty to a denomination—previously the norm—no longer prevails.… One observer likened the phenome-non to personalizing a “playlist” on an iPhone.…

Neither Could They Blush

A major factor in the destruction of God’s people in the days of Jeremiah was their shamelessness: “Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush” (Jer. 6:15). Among the “works of the flesh” that will keep one out of Heaven is “lasciviousness”…

No Authority Needed”

In the 1988 debate between Alan Highers and Given O. Blakely of the Independent Christian Church, Mr. Blakely attempted to justify the use of mechanical instruments of music in worship by arguing that no authority is needed. He based his argument on at least three assertions….

No Bible Heritage

Humanists, Secularists, political Progressives, and assorted other anti-God, anti-Christ, and anti-Bible forces are doing their best to remove all Biblical connections to our nation’s history.… In spite of the best efforts of such forces, the Bible remains deeply ingrained in the public consciousness.…

No Thanks, Anytime

A frequently seen bumper sticker depicts a cocktail glass and the message, “No thanks, I’m driving” (I once saw one of these on one of “our” church vans!). This message is intended to warn other drivers of the multiplied tragedies that are daily caused by drunk drivers, a warning direly needed by the general public….

Not Heard at the Judgment

The Bible teaches that there will be a great Day of Judgment when Jesus Christ returns and that He will be the Judge on that Great Day…He will judge us by “the Word he has spoken”… and according to the way we have lived… In light of these statements of Scripture, we will do well to ponder some statements that will not be heard at the Judgment….

Not or Now?

Changing a single letter of a word can create a statement that directly contradicts the writer’s intended expression. To misspell not as now well illustrates this fact. It is bad enough to unwittingly make such an error in a word relating to the Scriptures. It is manifestly worse when one intentionally makes such substitutions….

Now or Not?

A pesky stumblingblock to proofreaders is catching the “correct error”—the word that is spelled correctly, but is the wrong word. Failure to note these flaws can result in everything from nonsense to saying the opposite of one’s intent.… In Biblical matters examples abound wherein men intentionally substitute their own not for God’s now…

Offering the Invitation

After his sermon on the day of Pentecost, which concluded with the plan of salvation, Peter used “many other words” of exhortation, including the persuasive plea, “Save yourselves from this crooked generation.” About three thousand souls responded in obedience (Acts 2:38–41)….

Oh for an Honest False Teacher!

Although many of the wolves were forced to wear sheep’s clothing (the Lord’s figure for hypocrisy and deception [Mat. 7:15–16]) for a few decades, their influence has become so pervasive….

Oh, How He Loved Her!

There is a structure and pattern to the work and worship of the church, which causes it to take on a distinct identity in the New Testament. Only when the church behaves as her husband desires is she that glorious and holy bride, having neither spot, wrinkle, nor blemish.…

On Being Broadminded

Broadminded connotes an ample tolerance of beliefs and/or behaviors other than one’s own. Modern philosophers have created a culture that exalts this trait regarding morals and all religions (i.e., apart from those claiming Bible connections!).

On Bidding God Speed

John wrote words of stern warning in 2 John 9: “For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds.” John was warning about our attitude toward those who advocate error. To offer support, in word or deed, to those who have compromised the Truth is to become their “partner in crime.”…

On Civil Disobedience

….can a Christian, with the Lord’s approval, ever resist the laws of his government? The Bible clearly answers that he not only can, but in certain circumstances, he must refuse to obey them—thus engaging in “civil disobedience.”

On Dumbing Down God

In recent years, dumbing down has entered the vernacular, meaning to diminish the original effect, power, or significance of an entity. Thus, one might say that the institution of marriage has been “dumbed down”….

On the Fear of God,

The 112thPsalm begins as follows: “Praise ye Jehovah. Blessed is the man that feareth Jehovah, that delighteth greatly in his commandments.” This blessing upon the God-fearer is one of dozens of Biblical statements that either commends or enjoins our fear of God.…

On Freckles and Hairs

Some Christians fill such powerful roles in the church that they may be liked unto an eye or an ear (vv. 16–17). Others are like a hand or a foot (vv. 14, 21). However, many others are not so prominent and, and they are not to be despised. It takes all of the various parts to make up the body….

On Identifying False Teachers

As our Lord drew the Sermon on the Mount to a close, He gave the following warning: “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravening wolves. By their fruits ye shall know them” (Mat. 7:15–16). Do we still need this warning?…

On the Fear of God

The 112th Psalm begins as follows: “Praise ye Jehovah. Blessed is the man that feareth Jehovah, that delighteth greatly in his commandments.” This blessing upon the God-fearer is one of dozens of Biblical statements that either commends or enjoins our fear of God….

On the Intolerance of Tolerance

Generally, the Bible teaches the virtues of tolerance and forbearance. The Lord warned against harsh, hypocritical, hypercritical, and unmerciful attitudes that use a double standard in our judgment of others. Paul enjoined us to be longsuffering, and Peter set forth God as the ultimate example of same….

On the Loss of Shame

The populace of our nation have lost their sense of shame over shameful behavior. According to a recent report, even first and second graders are addressing their teachers by such foul names that school principals are taking the matter up with the parents….

On Wills and Codicils

The Son of God, Jesus Christ, has a will. It is called “The New Testament” to distinguish it from God’s Will as previously expressed in The Old Testament. Jesus’ Will went into effect when He died on the cross….

Our Cares and God’s Care

A verse that we all should commit to memory and upon which we should ever rely is the following: “casting all your anxiety upon him, because he careth for you” (1 peter 5:7). When we learn to trust this promise, it will bring us great consolation and courage.

Our Powerful and Cunning Foe

While our foe in the great spiritual warfare of life fully utilizes men and women who yield themselves to his service, our real battle is not with them, but with him who dominates their thinking and their behavior.

Parental Abdication

Some of the most pitiable people in the world are those whose personalities have been warped by ultra-strict, extra-harsh, unnecessarily restrictive parental despotism. Parents must be aware of the danger of abusing their children in this way.…

People Are Impressed

Some people are so self-conscious about what others think about them as to be unbalanced. They slink around, afraid to speak or act, for fear that someone will criticize them. They are right, of course. 

Perils of the Soul 

Those who have experienced life-threatening situations understand the meaning of peril.… Few ever consider the fact that spiritual perils are far more consequential than physical ones. Jesus put these perils in perspective: “And be not afraid of them that kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul….

Prayer Pointers

We all are subject to drifting into behavior and speech habits that convey unscriptural concepts. Sometimes such speech habits are manifested in the prayers in our assemblies. Such mistakes are doubtless made innocently, but they are mistakes, nonetheless….

Preacher, My Aims as a Gospel

It is always helpful to have a roadmap when traveling, whether on literal roadways or on the journey of life. With this in mind, I present the following as the “map” I aim to follow in my life and work as a Gospel preacher:…

“Preachers” or “Pastors”?

“Pastor” may be the word most frequently used to describe a preacher’s work (e.g., “John Smith is the pastor of the ___________ church”). This term is also used as a title of address (e.g., “Pastor John Smith will now speak”). Roman Catholics and Protestants alike thus employ the word. Does the Bible sanction this usage?…

Preachers in Prison—Poem

God’s preachers are in prison yet, But unlike Paul of old; The bars and chains God’s preachers get today, are manifold.…

Preaching on Church History

The older I get and the more I observe what some brethren are doing and saying, the more convinced I become that the Lord’s people do not know much about church history. Surely, some of the things being tolerated and/or promoted among brethren nowadays would not be going on if there were a better grasp of what has gone before….

“Professional Preachers”

It is not unusual to hear uncomplimentary remarks made about those who are supported by others while they preach the Gospel. Often we are referred to as “professional preachers” in a derogatory way….

Purposes of Miracles

Why did God empower men in the first century to work miracles? One of the Biblical words for “miracle” (semeion) provides a clue. This word connotes an act that is beyond natural explanation or human capability and is therefore a sign of Divine origin and/or authority….

“Put Things Right”

After sending back stunning pictures of Saturn (1980), Uranus (1986, and Neptune (1989), Voyager 1 escaped the gravitational pull of the Sun, and in 1998, this high-tech machine became the most distant man-made object in space, hurtling into deep space beyond our galaxy….

Rebelling Against God

As Israel approached Sinai on the way to Canaan they murmured against Moses and Aaron because of hunger (Exo. 16:1–3). It is important for us to notice that Moses correctly perceived that this murmuring actually represented rebellion against God: “Your murmurings are not against us, but against the Lord”….

Rejecting Jesus

How do men reject Jesus? What attitudes or activities constitute such rejection? Jesus answers….

“Relationship, Not Religion”

Some time ago a denomination in Dallas, Texas, advertised its aim as “relationship, not religion.” When I read it, I thought, “At last, Truth… in advertising!”…

Relativism, The Myth of 

Members of both major political parties talk about “big-tent” policies. By big-tent they mean inclusion of those who hold views diverse from and/or contradictory to core party principles—if they will vote the party ticket. Men will long debate whether such represents good politics, but it undeniably represents considerable compromise.…

Religion by Majority

A Pew Poll of 35,000 Americans, released in June 2008, revealed some interesting statistics about religious beliefs. More than half (57%) of  “evangelicals” (strong in their belief in the Bible and in Jesus as God’s only begotten Son, right?), opined that Christianity is not the only way to Heaven…..

Religious “Dinos”

Acronyms have long been popular, especially in government and politics. Two of these in current use relate to the major political parties.… In religion, those who claim to be Jesus’ disciples, but who teach and act otherwise, may accurately be called religious “DINOS”—disciples in name only.…

Religious Pluralism 

The term “pluralism,” when applied to religion, lauds diversity. Wickipedia states: “Religious pluralism holds that no single religion can claim absolute authority to teach absolute truth”…

“Repent” or” Perish”

Jesus twice stated, “except ye repent, ye shall…perish” (Luke 13: 3–5). His statement signals the indispensable place of repentance in the scheme of redemption. We will thus do well to understand its meaning and its relationship to other elements of the Lord’s plan of salvation.…

Resisting the Devil

Peter has a helpful statement on resisting the devil:
Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist steadfast in the faith, . . . (1 Pet. 5:8-9)….

Respect for Scripture

If the Lord’s displeasure was clearly upon those who would break even the least com- mand of the inferior covenant (which was soon to pass away), how much more shall His wrath be upon those who disrespect the superior covenant of Calvary?…

Respect for Work

 A great paradox of our times is that millions remain unemployed while the newspapers are full of job opportunities. Another problem of employers is to find someone who knows how to work or wants to learn how. The problem among many people is that they have seldom been around anybody who knows what work is or how to work….

“Return” Occurrences

The New Testament not only frequently and plainly tells us that Jesus Christ will return, but it also tells us what things will occur when He comes….

Ruled by Law or by Men?

Only two kinds of civil government exist: The rule of law or the rule of men. When law prevails (assuming its nobility), all are treated equally because law is objective, and plays no favorites.… When men rule, they use the law only when it favors their cause or when it rewards their friends and/or punishes their enemies.…

Satan And His Devices

Just as God is depicted from the beginning of the Bible as the source of all that is good, pure, and true, Satan is identified as a spirit-being who is the source of every malevolent principle, act, and consequence. Thus, it was Satan in the form of a serpent who sought and secured man’s first evil act and consequence….

Saved, When Is One?

There is no more important question for anyone to ponder because it involves one’s eternal destiny. One may be mistaken about his house, his job, his car, his health, mathematics, history, or any number of things, but one dare not be mistaken about this subject.… 

Science, Ignorance and Bias

…God ordered man to subdue the earth and to have dominion over fish, fowl, and land animals (Gen. 1:28). God thus authorized the experimentation and observation necessary to scientific studies. Clearly, the Bible believer has no cause to oppose genuine science….

Scriptural “Red Flags” No. 1

The exhortation, Be not deceived, appears several times in the New Testament. Each occurrence prefaces some special danger and should serve as a “red flag” of warning. Accordingly, we will be wise to note some of these.

Scriptural “Red Flags” No. 2

When we read, Be not deceived, in Scripture, a special “red flag” of warning is being given. In 1 Corinthians 6:9-10 Paul raised one of these “red flags”:

Scriptural “Red Flags” No. 3

In 1 Corinthians 15:33 is another be not deceived passage, sending up a “red flag” of warning: “Be not deceived: evil companionships corrupt good morals” (ASV)….

Scriptural “Red Flags” No. 4

In Galatians 6:7 we find another “red flag” of warning: “Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.”…

Scriptural “Red Flags” No. 5

James 1:16 contains another “red flag,” warning us against deception: “Be not deceived, my beloved brethren (ASV).” This warning looks backward to what James had just written about temptation, sin, and death….

Scriptural Silence

Does Scriptural silence grant freedom to act in religious matters, as many allege? Does the silence of the Bible have a prohibitive force? How shall we deal with the silence of Scripture?

Scriptural Silence Sometimes Forbids

Those who divided the church over a century ago by forcing in the missionary society and the instrument had to deny the significance of Scriptural silence concerning both innovations.

Selective Postmodernism

Postmodernism is the buzzword for today’s sophisticates who purport to have transcended the outmoded standards that have well served mankind from the beginning and Western Civilization for centuries….Postmodernism repudiates the concepts of objective standards and exclusive, propositional Truth claims….

Selfless Servants

When Jesus reminded the apostles of His own service to others, He used it as an example of how they should serve (Mat. 20:27). He taught them that true greatness lay not in being served, but in serving….

Separation

Throughout the Bible the doctrine of “separation” is taught. God requires His people to recognize that they distinctly belong to Him and to behave accordingly. God gave Israel the law of Moses to keep them a separated people until the Christ should come….

Serving in Humility

The spirit of humble service is one of the great themes of the Bible. Jesus said, “And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant” (Mat. 20:27). He also said, “And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted”….

Shall We Have Deaconesses?

For several years it has been the practice of some religious groups (including the Independent Christian Church) to appoint “deaconesses.” Predictably, some of the “faddists” among us are adopting the practice. Is there Scriptural warrant for it?

Sin – The Great Deceiver 

The writer of Hebrews warned: “Take heed…lest any one of you be hardened by the deceitfulness of sin” (3:12–13). Deceit is the act of giving a false impression, by appearance, direct statement, or influence….

Sin—Its Implications

Only a few decades ago, the majority of US citizens acknowledged the existence and consequences of an entity called sin. A vast number of our citizens now deny sin’s existence—by their deeds, if not by their words. But what if there is such a thing as sin?…

Sinful “Surnames”

I borrowed the idea for the following article from one Steve Gibson authored several years ago. At the time he wrote it, Steve was sound in his teaching and behavior.

  • Theistic evolution is wrong because evolution is wrong.
  • Social drinking is wrong because drinking is wrong….

Some “Why Nots” of Worship

The worship of Almighty God is both an exalted privilege and an awesome responsibility. Failure to grasp this truth plunged the likes of Cain (Gen. 4), Nadab and Abihu (Lev. 10), and King Saul (1 Sam. 13) into terrible calamities….

Some Wonders of Jesus’ Birth

The Biblical record of the birth of Jesus Christ notably omits the date of its occurrence and any record of a special observance of the occasion. Although twenty centuries distant, it is still a subject of great wonder for several reasons….

Sounds Like Some of Us

Harold Kushner, a Jewish rabbi, wrote a book titled, Who Needs God? According to reviewer, Don Feder, (a syndicated columnist) in Kushner’s view of deity and religion, “absolutely no one.” The book is typical liberal theology, which adapts god and religion to current behavior and thought patterns….

“Spiritual Adultery”?

Just when I think I have “heard it all,” something else comes along to prove that I had not. This is particularly true of the subject of marriage, divorce, and remarriage….

 Stand Fast and Fight

The whole point of a soldier’s being well-armed is not for the parade ground, the reviewing stand, or mock maneuvers, but for the field of combat. The reason we are to “take up the whole armor of God” is that we “may be able to withstand in the evil day, and, having done all, to stand”

“Strong in The Lord”

Paul commanded, “Be strong in the Lord” (Eph. 6:10). The fact that we are ordered to spiritually strong necessarily implies that it is possible for us to attain such strength. The Lord does not press orders upon His people that are beyond our accomplishment….

Suffering for Jesus’ Sake

Faithfulness to Christ cannot be measured apart from willingness to suffer for His sake. In the Sermon on the Mount Jesus said:

Blessed are they that have been persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye when men shall reproach you, and persecute you, and say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake…. 

That Time of Year Again

Undoubtedly, during this holiday season more people (in our culture, at least) will be thinking and talking about the birth of Jesus than at any other time of the year. We see the effect of this phenomenon in various marketing and advertising campaigns….

The Bible Doctrine of Faith – No. 1

Faith and belief (in its various cognates) are among the most frequently found words and concepts in the Bible. They are also among the most misunderstood and abused Biblical words….

The Bible Doctrine of Faith – No. 2

Faith and belief are so much the basic response God requires of men that one or the other is often used as a synecdoche (i.e., a figure of speech in which a part represents the whole) for all that one must do to be reconciled to God….

The Bible Doctrine of Faith – No. 3

The Gospel is often called “the faith” in an objective sense. When so used, the faith refers to that whole body of doctrine in which men must invest their faith.

The Bible Doctrine of Faith – No. 4

Our faith in God (and in all things Biblical) has to do with the elements of belief, trust, confidence, assurance, and conviction….

The Bible Doctrine of Faith – No. 5

Sometimes it helps us to determine what a thing is by learning what it is not. This is so concerning the faith that each person must have in order to be saved (Mark 16:15–16). Like many other Biblical words, faith has been variously misdefined….

The Bible’s Great Claim of Inspiration

The Bible claims to be the exclusive revelation of the true and living God. The Old Testament prophets enjoin, “Hear the word of the Lord,” or like expressions, hundreds of times. Paul declared that God revealed the long-hidden “mysteries” relating to human redemption (i.e., the NewTestament) to the apostles by means of the Holy Spirit…

The Book of Books

Secularism, atheism, and humanism are arrayed against the Bible as never before in our nation. They seek to stamp all Biblical influences from public life. There could hardly be a greater irony, given the general faith of the Founding Fathers and the Biblical influence present in our founding documents….

The Church Should Have Failed

By all human standards the church Jesus established through His apostles should never have “gotten off the ground.” Everything seemed to be against its success and survival.

The Church Was Not an Afterthought

Many anti-Scriptural concepts of the church exist (e.g., denominationalism, that one can serve Jesus apart from His church [Jesus, yes—the church, no], that the church’s principal work is to supply the physical and/or social needs of mankind, etc.). Another egregious misconception depicts.… 

The Conflict Is Real

Many go through life not realizing that a conflict between good and evil, Truth and error, is raging about them. Some do not perceive the conflict, having become convinced that evil is not so bad, good is not all that good, and error is about as good as Truth.

The Conversion of Saul

Saul of Tarsus is a fierce persecutor of Christians when he first appears in the New Testament record (Acts 7:58–8:3). His change from cruel crusader against the church to Jesus’ ardent advocate as the apostle Paul is one of the remarkable narratives of history, with significant implications….

The Danger of Discouragement

Given the wickedness of the world and the mounting attempts to drive underground those who dare publicly profess faith in the Bible, it is difficult to avoid becoming discouraged. Further, when we observe the chaotic state of the church of the Lord we could easily become depressed. Of all of Satan’s weapons, his favorite may be discouragement.

The “Easter” Season – From God or From Man

The “Lenten season” (celebrated by Roman Catholic, Orthodox, and many Protestantchurches), is a time during which celebrants are urged repent of and abstain from some vice and/or make some “sacrifice.” Mardi Gras is the Lent-observer’s last chance to engage in excess and uninhibited behavior before the self-denial of Lent limits his or her behavior….

The Ephesian Widows – 1 Timothy 5:3-16

First Timothy 5:3–16 has long been problematical. Perhaps the biggest problem revolves around what seems to be an arbitrary age limit governing widows who can be “enrolled” (v. 9), and, as generally concluded, whom the church can therefore support.

The “Failure” of Jesus

To even imply that Almighty God was “surprised” by the rejection of His Son is to blasphemously deny His omniscience….

The Gift of Tongues

One of the miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit is the gift of tongues (1 Cor. 12:10, 30; 19:6; 14:2; et al.). What were these tongues in which some of the early saints were empowered to speak?….

The Gospel and Conflict

Even a simpleton could hardly fail to under-stand that God’s way is one that seeks peace among all men and between mankind and Himself. One of the most compelling attractions of Heaven is the promise of its atmosphere of perfect, everlasting peace….

The Gospel and Subjectivism

Religious convictions based solely upon feelings and experiences characterize our times. These traits have always been trademarks of Pentecostalism and Holiness groups, but they now affect all of the sects—and not a few brethren. Most religionists trust their eternal destiny to a mere hunch or feeling….

The “Gospel” of “Magic”

In the 1980s, “Magic” Johnson obtained great fame and wealth by his basketball exploits with the Los Angeles Lakers. He has been named one of the fifty greatest basketball players of all time. In 1991, he contracted the HIV virus, which forced his immediate and premature retirement when he was at the top of his game….

The Grace of God

Grace may be the most beautiful and significant word in the Bible, for none will be saved except by the grace of God (Eph. 2:8). This word refers to God’s bestowal of undeserved favor upon men. While the concept of God’s grace is so very important, it is also one of the most misunderstood and perverted Bible doctrines….

The Graces of Compassion and Kindness

Among the many attractive and ennobling traits of character urged upon servants of God and followers of Christ are the twin virtues of compassion and kindness. These sweet attributes are appreciated and admired even by the uncompassionate and unkind.

The Heart or the Head

Heart in our title refers to feelings, (e.g., joy, sorrow, fear, anger, hate, love, et al.). Head refers to reasoned conclusions based on evidence..Only when the head triumphs over the heart will one seek, find, and obey the Gospel….

The Infallible Manual for Marriage and Family

And he answered and said, have ye not read, that he who made them from the beginning made them male and female, and said, For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and the two shall become one flesh?…

The Joys of Soul-Winning

Soul-winning is the most important work in the world. It alone was the sufficient cause for the Word to become flesh and dwell among men

The “Isaiah” Attitude

Seven centuries before the Christ came, God had a job that needed to be done. He asked, “Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?” Isaiah replied, “Here am I; send me” (Isa. 6:8). The willingness of the prophet to accept the task to which God referred was exemplary for those who seek to serve God in any era….

The Kind of Preaching We Need

Bible preaching. “Preach the word” is Paul’s command (2 Tim. 4:2). The Bible must be the content and focus of our preaching, for such alone can be called “sound [healthy, health-giving] doctrine” ….

The Land Promise

One of the pillars on which every variety of premillennialism rests involves the “land promise.” God first promised the land of Canaan to Abram and his descendants and then repeated it to Isaac and Jacob….

The Most Dangerous Sin

If you were asked to name the most dangerous sin, would it be murder, lying, adultery, slander, or perhaps some other? All of these are dangerous, both to the victim and the perpetrator. However….

The Myth of Relativism

Is 7 the sum of 2+2? Is “up” above us or below us? Does the law of gravity operate only in certain cultures? Is the rape of a seven-year-old child good, neither good nor evil, or evil? Can black be both black and white simultaneously? Is truth, like beauty, only in the eye of the beholder….

The Narrow Gate

A multitude of brethren (and most all of the world) would almost rather be shot than be called “narrow-minded.” However….

The Nature of God

The Bible speaks of the hand, the arm, the finger, the eye, the ear, the face, and even the “hinder parts” of God. Are we to take these literally or are these figures of speech the inspired writers employed to help us relate to the Infinite?

The Need for Vigilance

While guarding against over-suspicion, we must also guard against its opposite extreme. Many problems that beset the church may be traced to this root. If some brethren are hyper-suspicious, perhaps more are hyper-naive about everybody and everything. Some have chosen the course of a carefully premeditated ignorance….

The New Testament Church

If the church as God planned it and Christ built it is to exist in any age, there are certain principles to which men must be committed. As surely as any of these principles are abandoned, so surely will the New Testament church cease to exist….

The No-Fault Mentality

The past few years have seen the burgeoning of a philosophy that threatens to utterly demote mankind to the level of brute beasts. For lack of a better term, I refer to it as the “no-fault” mentality. Simply put, it seeks to absolve everyone of any personal blame or guilt for anything….

The Only Adequate Cause

We live in a cause-effect universe: Every effect must have a cause—yea, an adequate or sufficient cause—to explain it. A wristwatch implies a watchmaker. A house implies a designer and builder. The computer on which I am composing these words required great intelligence, skill, and power to conceive, design, and build….

The Perfect Role Model

Either consciously or unconsciously, everyone has one or more role models whom he seeks to imitate. Jesus Christ alone has the right to be such because He lived a flawless life….

The Power of Jesus Blood

In 1927, blood was drawn from the veins of Asibi, a 28-year-old African. From subsequent cultures of that blood, scientists developed yellow fever vaccine. The blood of that man provided power and hope, likely preventing millions of deaths. The blood of Another—Jesus Christ—is far more powerful and hope-filled….

The “Poison” of Religion

Christopher Hitchens, renowned British atheist, titled his 2007 book, God Is Not Great (subtitled, How Religion Poisons Everything). Both are solid thwacks at the mazards of believers. He knows how to get our attention.

The Principle Of Ought

Among the “new wave” of stellar militant, belligerent infidels is the British Oxford scholar, Richard Dawkins. His 2006 book, The God Delusion, boldly aims at converting every believer to his atheism. Obviously, either too few have read it, or he didn’t do a very effective job. Many millions (whether odd or not-odd) still believe in God.…

The Right Rod

When God specifies that which man is to do, he must do it or incur Divine displeasure. Man may not add to, omit, or substitute anything in the place of that which God specifies.

The Scandal of The Church

In worship, organization, work, and other features, the faithful churches of Christ in the first century and in the twenty-first century are identical….

The Supreme Court

Article III, Section 1, of the Constitution of the United States, names the Supreme Court as the ultimate judicial power of the United States of America. Some of its rulings have crucially affected the moral foundation and direction of our nation.

The Thousand-Year Reign

The vast majority of Protestants believe the “thousand years” of Revelation 20:1–7 refers to the tenure of Christ’s reign in an earthly kingdom upon His return. Since He will come before His alleged millennial reign, this theological system is called “premillennialism.”…

The Way Of Cain

In his brief New Testament letter, Jude wrote of “the way of Cain” (v. 11). Genesis 4 tells us that Cain was the first human being to be born, the eldest son of Adam and Eve. He was a farmer by occupation, and he was religious….

The Weak Weapons of Men

In the contest with evil we must remember that, while we oppose men who serve Satan, our real foe is Satan: “For our wrestling is not against flesh and blood, …but against the spiritual hosts of wickedness …”

The Wickedness of Pride

“The fear of Jehovah is to hate evil: Pride and arrogancy…do I hate” (Pro. 8:13). The Bible deals with few sins more explicitly than with pride. Scripture is piled upon Scripture to show God’s abhorrence of it.

The Words of Jesus

Jesus Christ was remarkable for His “mighty works and wonders and signs” (Acts 2:22). Those who heard Him were also “astonished at his teaching” (Mat. 7:28b). He was fully conscious of the significance of His words, as indicated by His repeated reference to “the words I have spoken.” Consider now His words….

They…Believe a Lie

For generations, millions of otherwise rational beings, claiming to be disciples of Jesus, have mouthed the slogan: “It makes no difference what you believe, as long as you are sincere in following that belief.”…

“They Made Light of It”

In a parable, Jesus depicted a king who made a feast for his son. When the servants went out with the invitation, the ones invited “made light of it” (Mat. 22:1–5). The point of the parable is to predict the way most men will respond to God’s invitation to honor His Son and to reveal the dire outcome of their rejection….      

Things That Keep Me Going

No person ever lived that never became discouraged, including such spiritual giants as our Lord and the apostle Paul (Mat. 23:37; Acts 28:15; 1 Cor. 2:3; et al.). When perverse men and women hate you and try to destroy you and the good work you are doing, what keeps you from just giving up? When trials are many and sore, how do the faithful keep on being faithful in spite of them?

Those “Arrogant” Apostles

To the Corinthians Paul wrote: “If any man thinketh himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him take knowledge of the things which I write unto you, that they are the commandment of the Lord”….For ordinary men to make such authoritative claims smacks of unmitigated arrogance, but were these “ordinary” men? In the sense that they were human beings with natural human appetites, yes, they were. However, in another sense, these men were not “run-of-the-mill,” everyday men….

Thoughts on Attendance

There is more to being faithful to God than “church attendance.” However, does faithfulness require it (to please God, to grow spiritually, to be saved)? I am not asking if merely the preacher and/or elders and other members care, but does God care?….

Thoughts on the Gospel

Gospel occurs 97 times in the New Testament. The Gospel (and the salvation it provides, Rom. 1:16) is the New Testament’s theme. What does it tell us about the Gospel?

Thoughts on the Rapture

To those enthralled by dispensational premillennialism (perhaps 98% of Protestantism), the Rapture is the next pivotal event on God’s prophetic calendar. Is the Rapture Biblical fact or theological fiction?

Thoughts on Truth

Pontius Pilate asked Jesus, “What is truth” (John 18:38)? Many today echo his question. Many have been persuaded to believe there are no absolutes, but that all principles and values are on a sliding scale.

Tolerance, On the Intolerance of

It is possible to become so extreme in the practice of a virtue that it becomes a vice. It is good to pray, but if one spent every moment in prayer, he could not do many other things the Lord requires of us. (Incidentally, this is not what Paul meant when he wrote, “Pray without ceasing” [1 The. 5:17].)…

“Topsy-Turvy

We may generally characterize the tumultuous, topsy-turvy times of the present as the elevation of fiction over facts, the abnormal over the normal, willful amnesia over history, fantasy over reality, subjectivity over objectivity, romanticism over reason—and man over God..

“Unscriptural”

People often  make the sad old error of failing to distinguish between optional and obligatory matters, between aids in carrying out Scriptural commands and additions to Scriptural commands..

Understanding the Bible

Nothing is more obvious than that men who profess belief in the Bible do not understand it alike. Some believe this is inevitable or even good. If so, why does the Bible command that we “all speak the same thing and that there be no divisions among you”

Vacation Time

God has so structured our existence in this life that honest work is fulfilling, beneficial, honorable, and required of all mature, able-bodied people..Though an Infinite Being is obviously not subject to fatigue, still God set a pattern of rest at the end of the creation week and in the Mosaic laws concerning Sabbath Day observance….

Vain Things

Vain is capable of two distinct meanings, depending upon context.…  Vain action, however, is futile, ineffective, worthless, or unavailing effort. The New Testament describes various behaviors that are vain—they are a waste of both time and effort. A review of some of these is instructive….

Was Jesus Mistaken?

To deny that the kingdom came in the first century is to affirm that Jesus was mistaken when he declared and commissioned others to declare that it was near them and that it would come in their lifetimes. Jesus could not be the Savior of mankind if He made a mistake.

“We Are Commanded to Grow

While speaking of the local church, the preacher said, “We are commanded to grow.” He immediately quoted Mark 16:15 as his proof text: “Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to the whole creation.”…

“We” or” They” Members

It is lamentable, but true, that some members never think of the church in any terms except “they.” These brethren seem to view the church as sort of a corporation that operates from the church building. They thus think in terms of how “they” are going to spend the money, what “they” should be doing or what size crowd “they” had Sunday. 

What About Armageddon?

For many years, every time an international political crisis has arisen (especially if it involves the modern nation of Israel), the cry has gone up, “Armageddon is imminent! The end of the world is near! Christ is about to come”!…

What About Astrology

According to Webster, astrology is “The divination of the supposed influences of the stars upon human affairs and terrestrial events by their positions and aspects.” Simply put, astrology (not to be confused with astronomy, the scientific study of space) holds that the stars influence and control human thoughts and acts….

What Does the Lord’s Supper Commemorate.

We may have sung a particular hymn for so many years that we can sing both words and music without thinking about them. The same is true concerning prayer. Sometimes  one who leads prayers in the assembly will fall into a habit of using terminology that he has not really thought through (perhaps borrowed from a prayer he has heard someone else pray)….

What Is A Miracle?

The Bible records numerous miracles in both the Old and the New Testaments. God caused some of these directly (e.g., the astounding miracle of creation with which the Bible begins)….

“What Is the Biblical Name of the Universal Church?”

The title above is one of several questions a visitor to my Website, TheScripturecache.com, submitted on December 28, 2017. His reading my MS, “The Church of Christ Is Not a Denomination,” provoked the questions (obviously disagreeing with my MS).…

“What Is Truth?”

Pontius Pilate asked our Lord the question of our title (John 18:38). Perhaps we will never know whether Pilate was sincere or sarcastic. However, there is no excuse for anyone who has read the New Testament to have any doubt whatsoever that Jesus recognized the existence of absolute, objective, immutable spiritual Truth…

“Whatsoever a Man Soweth…” 

A bountiful, but bitter harvest of dishonor, immorality, profanity, drug/drink addiction, and cold secularism have become commonplace in our beautiful America. These behaviors extend from the powerless and poor through all intermediate levels to the wealthy….

What Does the Lord’s Supper Commemorate?

Habits can become so strong that they may lead us to do or say things without thinking about them. This can even happen to us relative to worship. We may have sung a particular hymn for so many years that we can sing both words and music without thinking about them. The same is true concerning prayer….

Whatever Happened to Sin?

We seldom read the word sin in the newspaper or hear it on TV, in the movies, or even in conversation. It has almost become a sin to mention sin….

What Is A Miracle?

The Bible records numerous miracles in both the Old and the New Testaments. God caused some of these directly (e.g., the astounding miracle of creation with which the Bible begins). In most of these unique events, God employed the agency of men (and in a few cases, angels and even lower animal forms). Miraculous activity is so prominent in the Bible that one cannot credibly claim to believe in its veracity while denying its recorded miracles….

What Is the Biblical Name of the Universal Church

The title above is one of several questions a visitor to my Website, TheScripturecache.com, submitted on December 28, 2017. His reading my MS, “The Church of Christ Is Not a Denomination,” provoked the questions (obviously disagreeing with my MS).

Whatsoever A Man Soweth…

A bountiful, but bitter harvest of dishonor, immorality, profanity, drug/drink addiction, and cold secularism have become commonplace in our beautiful America. These behaviors extend from the powerless and poor through all intermediate levels to the wealthy and most powerful in business and government (especially among those in government, it seems)….

“What Then Is the Law?”

In the context of convincing the Galatian Christians that the Law of Moses was inferior to the Law/ Gospel of Christ, Paul anticipated the foregoing question…

When a Christian Sins

The New Testament plainly teaches that we sometimes sin as Christians. To children of God, John wrote: “If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us…. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us”

When Jesus Was Lost

Luke 2:41–47 provides a rare glance into the childhood of Jesus. At the age of twelve, his parents accidentally left Him in Jerusalem upon beginning their return to Nazareth. This incident yields several practical truths….

When Is One Saved?

There is no more important question for anyone to ponder because it involves one’s eternal destiny. One may be mistaken about his house, his job, his car, his health, mathematics, history, or any number of things, but one dare not be mistaken about this subject….

When Jesus Was Lost

Luke 2:41–47 provides a rare glance into the childhood of Jesus. At the age of twelve, his parents accidentally left Him in Jerusalem upon beginning their return to Nazareth. This incident yields several practical truths:

When Normal Becomes Abnormal

A “norm” is a standard, a rule, a pattern. That which is “normal” is that which conforms to the norm or recognized standard. Departure from the rule or standard is “abnormal.” When a nation becomes so corrupt that it elevates abnormal behavior to the level of “normalcy,” it is in serious trouble…

When Will He Return?

Are there “signs of the times” for “the day of the Lord”? Can men discern the time of His coming from the numerology of Daniel or The Revelation?…

Whence Our Strength?

Three times in Paul’s great passage on the Christian “soldier” (Eph. 6:10–17) he tells us the source of all spiritual strength….

Which Jesus ?

Modern folk—scholar, ruler, and commoner alike—who still profess to believe in God have nevertheless in many cases eschewed the fact that He created them. Contrariwise, denying God’s revelation of Himself, they have “made” Him in theirimage. As they have done with the Father, so they have done with His Son, Jesus, the Christ.…

Which Describes You?

I have observed that there are at least six levels of spiritual behavior to be found within any local church. Let us engage in some self-examination….

Which Jesus?

Modern folk—scholar, ruler, and commoner alike—who still profess to believe in God have nevertheless in many cases eschewed the fact that He created them. Contrariwise, denying God’s revelation of Himself, they have “made” Him in their image. As they have done with the Father, so they have done with His Son, Jesus, the Christ….

Who Is Not a Christian?

Most people apply Christian indiscriminately to anyone who gives even the least lip service to Jesus and/or his doctrine. But by Bible definition, who, in fact, is a Christian? Determining who is not a Christian may help us answer this question.…

Who Is Your Master?

We must clearly decide whom we will serve. Jesus said, “No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one and love the other; or else he will hold to one and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon” (Mat. 6:24). So many have just enough religion to make them miserable….

Who Will Win?

The very fact that God, the Almighty, the Supreme One, is the source of all good, necessarily implies the eventual triumph of good over evil. God’s promise of Christ’s victory over Satan (Gen. 3:15) is a promise of the eventual final triumph of Truth over error….

Whose Shall They Be?

God pronounced judgment on the foolish farmer who had stockpiled his harvests with only one aim—selfish indulgence. In one breath God told him he would die that night and asked him, “The things which thou hast prepared, whose shall they be?”…

Why Are You Here?

The mail recently brought a small flyer with the question in the title above. The flip-side answers as follows: “You are here to have an eternal relationship with God!” To be Biblically accurate, we are here to serve and glorify God so that we can enjoy an eternal relationship with Him in Heaven….

Why Have Gospel Meetings?

Are Gospel meeting series still worth the time, money, and effort they require? Many point to the decline in attendance, when compared with such efforts thirty or forty years ago, and some congregations have discontinued them in favor of bringing in some specialist on this or that social problem. It cannot be gainsaid that they do not attract the crowds they did in a previous, slower-paced, less entertainment-oriented world….

Why Should I Attend Bible School?

Every Sunday morning and Wednesday evening the congregation conducts Bible classes. Dedicated teachers prepare for their teaching duties each week. Lamentably, some do not take advantage of these learning opportunities.

Why Some People Quit

Ever since the church began, some who obeyed the Gospel, thus being added by the Lord to the church, have failed to remain faithful. I am sure that there are some reasons with which I am not familiar. However, I have heard several in the years I have been preaching the Gospel. In hopes that these might prevent someone from dropping out, I want to discuss a few of them….

Will God “Understand”?

In God’s inspired Word, the Bible, He has revealed everything anyone can know about His mind and will. Either He means what He says in His Word, or He doesn’t. If He doesn’t, the Bible is merely advice that we may ignore with impunity.…

Wills and Codicils, On

Men make their wills on the basis of information available to them at the time. Conditions sometimes change that merit a change in the will. If the changes are extensive, the will is usually re-written. However, if only a brief statement of alteration is required, one may do this by affixing a handwritten note (i.e., a “codicil”).…

Wonder of His Birth, The—Poem

We know not on what day it was  The Savior-babe was born; We only know that this event With wonder is adorned. While early Christians are not known Who kept the Christ-child’s birth, It must be placed near to His death In all events of worth.…

Worldliness

All of those who love and are influenced by the world stand opposed to and alienated from God. Consider some of the warnings the Lord gives us against worldliness and the world.

Worship—A Serious Matter

The worship of Almighty God is both an exalted privilege and an awesome duty. Failing this realization has cost many much (e.g., Cain, Nadab, Abihu, King Saul, et al.). Jesus rejected the worship of the religious leaders of His day: “But in vain do they worship me, Teaching as their doctrines the precepts of men” (Mat. 15:9).…

Xmas Extremes

What a wonderful world this would be if this spirit “ran loose” each day of the year, and indeed, this is what the Lord wills. Along with all of the good things this season brings, I have observed some who have extreme positions toward “Xmas.”

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