DO YOU HAVE A QUESTION?

Have you ever had a question but were too afraid to ask? You’ve already been told that there are no stupid questions, so ask. If you have a question you’ve always wanted to ask, ask it (privately or personally) and I’ll do my best to offer a biblical answer. Below is a sampling of questions people should be asking but aren’t…

  • Why is attendance of religious services falling around the world?
  • How do I join the local church of Christ?
    1. Variation: Do I have to identify with a local group of Christians?
  • Are all churches of Christ the same? Does it matter?
  • What is the most important aspect of our Assemblies?
  • How come the churches don’t have crosses in their buildings?
  • Can we eat in the building? How come we don’t eat in the building?
  • How come we don’t have community benevolent programs?
  • What is the work of the church?
  • Why does the evangelist get all bent out of shape when someone calls him ‘pastor?’ Or when I use “church” as an adjective?

Future articles in 2019 will be dedicated to answering, with scripture, many of these questions.

CAN WE EVEN QUESTION THE BIBLE?

Jesus was asked a bunch of questions by folks. He never rebukes us for asking, unless we’re asking to justify ourselves or refuse to be honest with the answers.

In one such encounter, the Pharisees asked Jesus about His authority, “And when he was come into the temple, the chief priests and the elders of the people came unto him as he was teaching, and said, By what authority doest thou these things? and who gave thee this authority?” [Mat 21”23]

Jesus’ reply was not a rebuke for asking, for He said He would answer them, “if ye tell me, I in like wise will tell you by what authority I do these things. The baptism of John, whence was it? from heaven, or of men?” But they refused to answer, as either possible answer would rebuke themselves. It was then that Jesus refused to answer their question, because they weren’t being honest about the truth.

In another place, the Apostle Paul went about preaching and came to some folks who took what he preached and searched for some verification. The Berean’s, “received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so.” [Acts 17:11] You see, they took the preaching of Paul and compared it to the scriptures. Oh, if more people in denominations would do that!

Paul also told the Galatians, “though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed.” [Gal 1:8] He was ok with them verifying what he or anyone else preached. The problem was they had stopped following God’s word in favor false teaching.

He also told those in Thessalonica to, “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.” [1Thess 5:21].

In another place, John wrote to the saints and told them to, “believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world.” [1John 4:1]

The moral of the story is that it’s OK to ask questions. It’s OK and even encouraged to verify whatever anyone teaches or preaches.

There are just a few criteria…

  • Be honest with yourself, even if it means you may be wrong,
  • Be willing to search for the truth and
  • Be willing to accept the truth and to follow it.

We here in this local body of Christ want to know the truth and to obey the truth. We don’t mind it when someone asks questions and we often invite folks to visit with us after services to ask questions. Just be honest and be willing to accept the truth. If you’re unwilling to listen to God’s word for the answer, don’t bother asking us, because that’s the only qualified answer. The Bible is our only Guide. If you don’t want a bible answer, don’t ask any of us.

There are many false places to which people appeal for the answers to their questions….

  • False teachers – 1Tim 4:1
  • Yes men – 2Tim 4:3
  • The book of ‘opinions’ & ‘I think so’ – Mark 7:7
  • “that’s how we’ve always done it” Mark 7:8

None of these are the source of sound doctrine, and there are many more. Jesus warned the Sadducees, “Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God.” [Mat 22:29] We must be careful from where we get the answers to the questions of life and eternal life. God’s word gives us all we need for life & godliness [2Pet 1:3].

Would you like your question answered, and do you want it to be from God’s divine word? Then you’ve come to the right place. Come, let’s reason together.

Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” [Isaiah 1:18]

God’s plan for you

new year 2016

As 2015 ends, and 2016 is about to being, folks are putting together resolutions and plans for the new year. But, have you ever considered what Godly planning looks like? As you make your New Years Resolutions, let’s consider a Godly formula for making plans. 

BIBLICAL EXAMPLES OF PLANNING… The Scriptures show us many folks planning, some good and others making evil plans…..

EVIL PLANS – The Psalmist said, “Who plan evil things in their hearts; They continually gather together for war. (NKJV) [Psalm 140:2]. Solomon warned his son not to go with those who plan evil, “If they say, Come with us, let us lay wait for blood,” [Proverbs 1:11]. Jesus Himself told a parable of a man who planned fraud against his master [Luke 16:4 ].

Clearly, the scriptures condemn the making of evil plans, rather we should be making Godly plans….

GODLY PLANNING – Paul was planning to visit the church at Corinth to encourage them, “And in this confidence I was minded to come unto you before, that ye might have a second benefit; 17 Therefore, when I was planning this, did I do it lightly?” (NKJV) [2Co 1:15]

When MOSES was leading the children of Israel out of Egypt, he was working without much of a plan as he decided matters between one another. Jethro, his father-in-law, taught him a better way. “Hearken now unto my voice, I will give thee counsel, and God shall be with thee: Be thou for the people to God-ward, that thou mayest bring the causes unto God:” [Exodus 18:19]

DAVID faced Goliath with a plan. “This day will the LORD deliver thee into mine hand; and I will smite thee, and take thine head from thee; and I will give the carcases of the host of the Philistines this day unto the fowls of the air, and to the wild beasts of the earth; that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel.” [1Samuel 17:46]. If you’ve ever wondered why David, a man of faith, needed 5 smooth stones, this is the reason, he needed one to kill Goliath and with the others he planned to route the Philistines!

There were others plans made as well. As men moved to fulfill commands of God to build the Temple, they made plans and set aside materials to ensure an expedient completion. [1Ch 22:1-19; 28:14-18; 29:1-5; 2Ch 3:1; 5:1]. Then Nehemiah also made plans as he oversaw the rebuilding of the Temple, after their return from the captivity. [Nehemiah 2:7, 8]

[Since God has ALLOWED MAN TO PLAN, ought you plan your life to serve Him?]

GODLY PLANNING FOR OUR LIVES – As we’ve seen, God has allowed and approved of man to make plans to serve Him. Looking at additional scripture, we find that planning is wise.

IT’S RIGHTEOUS TO PLAN – The book of Proverbs teaches us to make plans, by telling us to give thought to our steps, and that the plans of the diligent lead surely to abundance. Included is a warning to those who fail to pause and plan that living impulsively only leads to poverty. [Proverbs 14:15; Proverbs 21:5]

Our Lord commended planning when He told how the wise count the cost before building a tower [Luke 14:28], or when a King goes to battle [v31, 32]. Let us never forget that obedience to Him is like the wise one who built his house on a rock [Matthew 7:24-27].

The Prophet Isaiah wrote, “But he who is noble plans noble things, and on noble things he stands [32:8 ESV]. Shall we not, as children of God, make noble plans? The question then becomes, what are noble plans and how do we make them?

Using scriptures, let’s look at a 7 step formula for making Godly, noble plans.

Step 1 – KEEP GOD’S WILL IN MIND – The first, and most important step is to begin with God’s plan / will. Before making any choice or plans ask yourself, “Is this what God would want?” We should always consider whether or not our plans are involving sin, if so, it no longer qualifies as noble.

Looking again to the Proverbs, “There are many devices (plans) in a man’s heart; nevertheless the counsel of the LORD, that shall stand” [Pr 19:21]. By committing our work to the Lord, our plans will be pleasing to the Lord [Prov 16:3].

“If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that,” ought to be our beginning attitude. [James 4:13-15]. Along with faithful obedience to the commands of God [Deuteronomy 28:1-68; John 14:15; Matthew 28:20].

Step 2 – SEEK WISE COUNSEL – “Plans fail for lack of counsel, but with many advisers they succeed,” [Proverbs 15:22]. We need to seek advice, but seek it from the right sources.

We need to ask GOOD PEOPLE, folks that are already living a Godly life. “Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of devils,” [1Corinthians 10:21; Ephesians 5:11]. Remember that Paul taught, “Evil company corrupts good habits,” [1Corinthians 15:33].

We should make plans by seeking advice, [Proverbs 20:18]. Even something like building a house, and filling it with our stuff, needs wise plans and advice or it will fail, [Proverbs 20:18; 24:3-4].

Sometimes NATURE provides us wise counsel. “Go to the ant, O sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise. Without having any chief, officer, or ruler, she prepares her bread in summer and gathers her food in harvest,” [Proverbs 6:6-8]. Job said to “ask the beasts” [Job 12:7], “and they shall teach thee.” God’s own creation can be a source of wisdom and counsel.

But God gives us a warning about FALSE INFORMATION. There are silly myths, false and selfish desires which cause us to seek teachers to tell us what we want to hear, [1 Timothy 4:7; Proverbs 19:2; 23:4; 2Timothy 4:3]. You’ve met those folks. They ask for advice but seldom take it, doing what they had intended from the beginning as they chase their own lusts.

Step 3 – SET THE RIGHT PRIORITIES, Sometimes we make nonsinful plans, but we’ve neglected other areas of our lives. Jesus condemned the Pharisees for this very thing. “..ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith:” Note that He wanted them to do the “WEIGHTIER MATTERS” but He also wanted them “not to leave the other undone” [Matthew 23:23].

Our first priorities are always to seek the kingdom of God, [Matthew 6:33], then the others things will be added to you. We also need to be mindful of giving, being benevolent, and taking care of our family’s needs [2Corinthians 9:7; 1Timothy 5:8]. If we seek our own selfish ambitions, we’re no longer making noble plans.

Step 4 is to PUT THINGS IN THE RIGHT ORDER, to do the things that are expedient to complete our plans. “.. get everything ready for yourself in the field, and after that build your house” [Proverbs 24:27 ESV]. We’re commanded our worship be done “decently and in order [1 Corinthians 14:40], should our lives, which is a service to God, be any less?

Step 5 is to DO IT, we need to get busy with our plans. Without work, no plans ever come to completion. When we work, let’s do it with all our might, [Ecclesiastes 9:10], without being slothful with our business [Romans 12:11], and to “do it heartily, as to the Lord” [Colossians 3:23]. God wants us to be active, not to be thieves, rather, “labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth” [Ephesians 4:28].

Step 6 is to EVALUATE the successes or failures of our plans. Are you still doing the right thing? Has your work changed making it sinful? Paul told the Corinthians to examine themselves, whether they be in the faith [1Cor 13:15], which must include our work activities as well as spiritual. If we stray away from the noble, Godly plans then let us bring ourselves back to the right.

Step 7 is to EXPECT TROUBLE and to prepare for it. This is a realistic view of life and many of us want to avoid or ignore trouble. Unfortunately, it is a part of life and the scriptures teach this. “time and chance happeneth to them all” [Ecc 9:11], is a reminder for us that things happen. Some good, and some bad. Look at the weather, God causes the rain on the just and the unjust, but sometimes floods come with the rain. [Matthew 5:45; 7:27] Consider the recent flooding in our own area.

Because of sin, and the broken world we live in because of sin, life is sometimes a struggle and we ought to expect it. We’re going to sweat, we’re going to get cut by thorns, but god has given us the strength to endure it. [Genesis 3:17, 18]

Even the people around us will sometimes be against us. Be it for jealousy or envy, they will be obstacles to our success [1Pe 4:4]. But don’t let the ungodly of this world, keep you from doing noble things.

CONCLUSION: With Godly planning, we can make the best of this world. God wants joy for us, but not just for this life. He has bigger and better plans. He has made a plan of SALVATION, which He made even before He created the world [Ephesians 1:4; Romans 16:25, 26; 1Peter 1:20].

His plans meant that His son, Christ Jesus, would be slain. This too was determined before the world was made [Revelation 13:8; Titus 1:2, 3].

His plans include for us to be a thinking people, [John 14:26]. His plans include for us to be obedient to Him [Ephesians 2:10; Titus 2:14; Matthew 28:20], to obey the Gospel [1 Thessalonians 1:8].

Finally, His plans include for us a FUTURE HOME which Jesus has gone to prepare [John 14:2]. A place that shall have no death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain and God shall wipe away all tears [Revelations 21:1].

We can make all the plans in the world, but if we fail to plan for eternity, we’ve lost it all. “For the time is come that judgment must begin at the house of God: and if it first begin at us, what shall the end be of them that obey not the gospel of God?” [1Peter 4:17]

Spencer

WHAT’S IN A NAME?

I’ve recently been asked “why do we care so much about the name Church of Christ?” I’ve had this before and have a response, but then I actually came across a religious group that pride themselves on having no name.

This is a problem folks. It’s already disappointing to have denominations calling themselves after the names of men, but to go so far as to not have a name at all just takes the cake!

Why is this such a problem you ask? Because God did supply names from the very beginning. God sent the animals He created to Adam to “see what he would call them” [Gen 2:19]. God also found it important to change Abrams name to Abraham, [Ge 17:5]. Moses also needed to know God’s name, and God gave one, [Ex 3:14] which Jesus called Himself and was convicted of Blasphemy by the Jews [Joh 8:58, Mr 14:62-63].

The Psalms also proclaim the name of God, [Ps 83:18]. His name is to be revered, and not blasphemed, [Ex 20:7; De 5:11; 28:58; Ps 111:9; Mic 4:5; 1Ti 6:1]

The names of the Old Testament often had meaning. Hosea was commanded by God to give his children certain names which had meaning, [Ho 1:3,4,6,9; 2:1]

Names were given in prophecy as a proof of their fulfillment, i.e., Josiah [1Ki 13:2].Then there are the prophecies about Jesus, including His name! [Isa 7:14, Mat 1:23]. Isaiah also prophesied about a new name for God’s people, “And the Gentiles shall see thy righteousness, and all kings thy glory: and thou shalt be called by a new name, which the mouth of the LORD shall name. [Isa 62:2]

Is this enough to show that names are important? I believe so, but let’s continue our study.

The chief priests sought for a name from Jesus for the things that He said and did, [Mt 21:23]. The Samaritan Woman knew what the Savior would be called, [Joh 4:25]. His parents “called His NAME Jesus”, [Mt 1:25, Lu 2:21]

As we continue to study, we find that the Holy Spirit found it important to reveal a name for God’s people under the new covenant, “And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.” Ac 11:26

NAMES IN THE NEW TESTAMENT

So, all of this leads us to the questions, what should His church be called? Should there be a name, is there a name given in the scriptures? Let’s turn to the word of God in the New Testament….

Jesus said, “And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” [Mt 16:18] Peter had just given the confession in vs 16 “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.” This shows upon what His church would be built. A careful examination shows that it’s NOT Peter, he has the keys. It’s NOT Christ Himself, He’s doing the building. Upon what is Christ building His church? The confession that Jesus is the Christ, the son of the Living God. HIS NAME.

We see this confession being professed by the Ethiopian, [Ac 8:37]. There are multiple passages about confessing and believing in the name of Jesus the Christ. [1Jo 4:15; 5:5, 13]

Looking to the letters to the churches, we find the authors using names for the New Testament Church… church of God [Ac 20:28, 1Co 1:2]. Church of the living God, [1Ti 3:15]. Church of the firstborn, [Heb 12:23]. We find letters addressed to a particular city, “church of the Thessalonians which is in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ:” [1Th 1:1] Paul ended his letter to the Roman Christians with the salutation, “The churches of Christ salute you.” [Ro 16:16]  Body of Christ, [Eph 4:12].

With all of these names, which one are we to use? Let’s consider some things about Jesus the Christ. He said He would build His church, [Mat 16:17]. He, Jesus the Christ, commanded that the Apostles “Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you:” [Mt 28:20]. Which is His doctrine, [2Jo 1:9]. His, Jesus the Christ’s, blood was shed for us, [Mt 26:28, Mr 14:24]. He, Jesus the Christ, is the head of the church, which is His body, and is the savior of the body, which He gave Himself for it. [Eph 1:22-23, 5:23-25]. And we are often reproached for His name, [1Pe 4:14].

Space prevents me from including other “____ of Christ” writings. Doctrine, partakers, gospel, servant, word, mystery, minister, cross, faith, knowledge, work, kingdom, obedience, grace, members and of course the day of Christ.

An honest study of the Word of God reveals that the church belongs to Jesus the Christ, it is the church of Christ. What we fail to find is denominational names, too many to even list. What’s in a name? Ownership, that’s what. [1Co 6:15, 19] Who owns you, is it Jesus the Christ or someone else? [Joh 8:44]

Spencer Preaches and Teaches at the Franklin St. Church of Christ in Borger, Tx

Ferguson, Deflategate & Johnny Depp

The country has been on fire as of late, literally. Cities being burned because folks are angry, protesting the supposed abuse by police among African American communities. We’ve tolerated the looting and destruction by calling it a protest. We’ve also tolerated some authorities to be above the law they’re sworn to protect!

In another story, a lot of folks are commenting on the “deflategate” scandal that has rocked the football world. Most are suggesting that this is no big deal. Making comparisons to the many sports figures receiving lighter punishments, that have beaten their wives or girlfriends, they suggest that this is a non-issue.

Then this morning I heard a story about Johnny Depp. It’s alleged that he smuggled his Yorkshire terriers, Pistol and Boo into Australia, skirting the law that requires them to be quarantined to be certain they are rabies free.

How these stories are related you ask? Simple, it’s a growing trend in our culture that allows people to be above the law if: they’re famous, rich, or angry. In all of these examples we will hear; “the facts don’t matter”, “It doesn’t change the results” or “what’s the big deal.” This is very troubling.  If facts don’t matter, or the end justifies the means, or it’s no big deal, then how is our society to function?

Ferguson – Tom Brady – Johnny Depp

The driving attitude behind all of these stories is ARROGANCE. Arrogant is defined as; having or revealing an exaggerated sense of one’s own importance or abilities. In each example, the parties involved believed that they are above the laws that govern the rest of us.

The abusive officer is above the law because he’s got a gun or is an authority figure. It’s ARROGANCE. The offending character is above the law because he’s poor, or black. It’s ARROGANCE. The protestors are above the law because they feel abused or pushed down. It’s ARROGANCE. Tom Brady is above the law (rules of the game) because he’s a great quarterback. It’s ARROGANCE. Johnny Depp is above the law because he’s rich and famous. It’s ARROGANCE.

We’re all becoming more arrogant and it’s sinful. The Bible, God’s word, talks about this;

“A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,” [Pr 6:17]

God is very clear about arrogance and pride, He hates it!

The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate.” [Pr 8:13]

When Paul wrote to the Church at Corinth, he condemned their arrogance in overlooking sin; “And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you.” [1Corinthians 5:2] The problem is that they thought they were more important than the commands of God! When we ignore His commands, ignore His will for our lives, ignore what He thinks is right, we’re ignoring Him, THE CREATOR. We’re really saying, “the facts don’t matter”, “It doesn’t change the results” or “what’s the big deal.”

If we ignore God, we miss all the blessings He’s promised, we miss the lessons that help us to avoid trouble in our lives, and we miss the mark. If we continue to ignore God, thinking more of ourselves, we miss heaven! We miss heaven because when we ignore God, we also ignore Jesus, the Christ….

“He that rejecteth me, and receiveth not my words, hath one that judgeth him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day. 49 For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak.” [John 12:48-49]

If we fail to learn the lessons about arrogance, continuing to think more of our own importance, we’ll never learn to obey God. We see it already in our homes, disobedient children [Ro 1:30], and in our work places [Ephesians 6:5], and we see it in our country [Romans 13:1-6].

There’s only one reason when we’re permitted to disobey man’s law,

“Then Peter and the other apostles answered and said, We ought to obey God rather than men.” [Ac 5:29](KJV)

Spencer Blackwelder, is an Evangelist in Borger, TX and has been working to recover from his own swollen head.

What doth hinder you?

In Acts 8, the Ethiopian Eunich asked, “….what doth hinder me to be baptized?” [Acts 8:36] This is the question that needs to be answered, what hinders you?

As I was reading Mark, this passage caused me to pause, ”That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest at any time they should be converted, and their sins should be forgiven them.” [Mr 4:12] It caused me to think about people that are blinded to the truth….

  • No one is so blind….
    • As one who WILL NOT SEE.
  • No one is so Deaf….
    • As one who WILL NOT HEAR.
  • No one is so illiterate….
    • As one who WILL NOT READ. [Eph 3:4]
  • No one is so ignorant….
    • As one who WILL NOT STUDY. [2Ti 2:15]

I once met a man convinced that salvation was by faith only. He actually was passing out material declaring the same. I asked him questions, noting that his material lacked scriptural support for what he was teaching. He said, “That’s odd, there should be some scriptures for this.”

I told him that I agreed, and asked, after much discussion, if he’d like to see the only passage in the entirety of scripture that says, “By faith only” in that sequence. What he said next shocked me, “No, I’m ok.” He then took his Bible, which I had opened to the very passage, closed it and stuck it into his pocket.

It is a sad day when a person claiming to be a child of God closes the Bible on truth. So, what doth hinder you from being baptized?

  • Me? – No, I’ll not stand in your way.
  • The church? – No, your denomination may, but the church of the Bible will never.
  • Law? – No, there’s nothing in the Law of Christ, [Ro 8:2] that will hinder you, it teaches it.
  • God? – No, He’s not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance. [2Pe 3:9]

So who is it? It’s YOU! Only you stand in the way of salvation. Oh yeah, do you want to know the only time “…by faith only” is used in Scripture?

Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only. [Jas 2:24]

What Does it Matter?

no, no, no, I’m not referring to Hillary’s Benghazi testimony so much as using it as a springboard to answer the question. This question comes up a lot, especially in matters of religion. When a person is confronted with a scripture pointing out a seemingly trivial differences in beliefs, that’s when you will hear….

What does it matter?

Though it’s often considered wrong to answer a question with a question, I want to ask this one…..What did Jesus say about a seemingly trivial matter?

Let’s look at the Sadducees questioning Jesus on the resurrection. (Mat 22:23-33) Not believing in the resurrection, they sought to test him with an example of a woman that was widowed 7 times, then herself dying also. They asked Jesus, “Therefore in the resurrection whose wife shall she be of the seven? for they all had her.”

Jesus gave a very specific answer, He said, “Jesus answered and said unto them, ‘Ye do err, not knowing the scriptures, nor the power of God. For in the resurrection they neither marry, nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven. But as touching the resurrection of the dead, have ye not read that which was spoken unto you by God, saying, I am the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? God is not the God of the dead, but of the living.”

Did you catch His answer? He pointed out the reason for their error was because they failed to note the TENSE of a verb. “I AM”, was spoken in the present tense, regarding Abraham, Isaac and Jacob who were dead at the time of the declaration. Jesus pointing them back to the time of God calling on Moses to deliver the people from Egypt. (Ex 3:6,16)

What does it matter?

Here are just a few things we learn about scripture from this story……

  1. it’s possible to make an error with the scriptures
  2. It’s possible to underestimate the power of God
  3. The Bible writers were directed by God to use specific words
  4. We need to pay attention to word usage in the Bible

So, what is the answer to “What does it matter?” It’s that we can be mistaken, lose the meaning or otherwise make an error with our studies as we attempt to find out the will of the Lord.

Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is. (Eph 5:17 )

Here’s one more question, if it’s possible to make an error with the scriptures, would it be possible to be mistaken about salvation?

spencer

Borger, Tx
806/274-5021

Ask me how to make your calling and election sure. 2Pet 1:10

  

IYADWYADYAGWYAG

IYADWYADYAGWYAG 

If you always do what you always did you always get what you always got

I learned this saying about 20 years ago while managing a restaurant. The basic premise is this, if you want something better then you have to do something different. Einstein said it this way, “Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

In business that is a fine way to go about it. If a business fails to improve, grow or update their technology, they shall eventually die.

Change in the church

As awesome as this is in business, this is a very dangerous thing for the church. Many today feel that the church needs to change. They say….

The old ways produce so little fruit.
We need to bring the church or even the Gospel into the 21st century.
We need to preach a modern Gospel.
Let’s begin programs and organizations that will bring people into the church.
Let’s build Community centers and sports facilities.

While speaking with a pastor at a particular denomination, he commented that their Wednesday study had a larger attendance than their Sunday service. Why? “We feed ’em!” He was speaking of a weekly spaghetti dinner.

You and I would agree that feeding is most certainly required; Joh 6:35 And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.-KJV

The “food” that one serves is what is at issue. Is that the point of the Gospel? Feeding people physical food, providing entertainment when we get bored? You see, what we’re converted with, we’re converted to. What happens when you take those things away?

What if following Jesus only provided salvation? Would that be enough?

Joh 6:26 Jesus answered them and said, “Most assuredly, I say to you, you seek Me, not because you saw the signs, but because you ate of the loaves and were filled.
27 “Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting life, which the Son of Man will give you, because God the Father has set His seal on Him.” – NKJV

The Gospel as it was written is RELEVANT TODAY –

Heb 4:12 For the word of God is living, and active, and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing even to the dividing of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and quick to discern the thoughts and intents of the heart. – ASV

Eph 3:1 For this reason I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for you Gentiles–
2 if indeed you have heard of the dispensation of the grace of God which was given to me for you,
3 how that by revelation He made known to me the mystery (as I have briefly written already,
4 by which, when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ), – NKJV

As you can see here and other places when you study your Bible, the Gospel of Jesus Christ is relevant today, tomorrow and forever.

A final thought…..

The Apostle Paul gives this warning about changing the Gospel……Ga 1:6 ¶ I marvel that you are turning away so soon from Him who called you in the grace of Christ, to a different gospel,
7 which is not another; but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ.
8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.
9 As we have said before, so now I say again, if anyone preaches any other gospel to you than what you have received, let him be accursed. – NKJV

If you always do what is GODS will, you always get what is GOD’S way!

Spencer
Borger, Tx