And take…the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. Ephesians 6:17
Volume XI, Number 17 March 23 2008
In this issue:
April 27–May 2, 2008
lessons nightly, Mon-Fri at 7:00 PM
(From I-5 take Exit # 255 and go East 4.2 miles)
Discipline is important. It is an expression of love and benefits those who are willing to accept its training (Heb. 12:5-11). Just as parents must learn how to effectively apply corrective discipline, Christians must learn how to apply the corrective discipline the Lord has commanded us to apply in order to help save brethren who walk disorderly (2 Ths. 3:6).
* Remove your social contact. “Do not keep company with him, that he may be ashamed” (2 Ths. 3:14). Withdrawing yourselves from the Christian who is walking disorderly is intended to remove something that is important to him, namely, the social interaction he would normally enjoy with you. To continue social relations in spite of the Christian’s sinful lifestyle will not persuade him (or her) to be ashamed and repent of his sin. Furthermore, it will give him the message that he can continue committing his sin with your approval (and even God’s) -- after all, you continue to act like everything is okay, so it must be. But, something has changed; his unrepentant sin has separated him from God and God’s people. We can no longer convey to the disorderly Christian that everything is fine; his or she is lost in sin – that is not fine.
* Do not treat the disorderly Christian like an enemy. “Yet do not count him as an enemy…” (2 Ths. 3:15). Withdrawing ourselves from the disorderly Christian does not mean being rude to him. It does not mean if you happen to run into him that you turn away in disgust. We do not hate the sinning Christian anymore than the parent who disciplines his child hates the child. On the contrary, discipline is an action of love, and love does not behave rudely (Heb. 12:6; 1 Cor. 13:5).
* Warn the fallen Christian. “…but admonish him as a brother” (2 Ths. 3:15). An admonition is a cautionary warning that reminds one of danger. Kindly yet firmly rebuke the fallen one as a brother or sister for whose salvation you yearn. “Brethren, if a man is overtaken in any trespass, you who are spiritual restore such a one in a spirit of gentleness, considering yourself lest you also be tempted” (Gal. 6:1).
* Remember your goal. Saving a soul from eternal death is the goal of withdrawing ourselves from “every brother who walks disorderly” (2 Ths. 3:6). Sin has broken his fellowship with God and our fellowship with our beloved brother or sister. Our aim is saving the lost; remembering that singular purpose is essential in order to treat the fallen one properly. Always act in a way intended to warn and save the lost one from eternal death: “Brethren, if anyone among you wanders from the truth, and someone turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner from the error of his way will save a soul from death and cover a multitude of sins” (Jas. 5:19-20).
You can find the complete outline of this sermon at BIBLE ANSWERS
Scripture Reading: Genesis 19:12-17
Why remember Lot’s wife? Gen. 19:17
a. Must escape sin to avoid
I. GOD’S COMMANDS ARE PLAIN, SIMPLE, EASILY UNDERSTOOD, 1 Jno. 5:3. (Heb. 1:2; Matt. 17:5; Jno. 14:6; 8:32; 7:17; Eph. 5:17; 3:4)
A. Leave this Wicked & Sinful
World, 1 Jno. 5:19; Gal. 1:4; 1 Jno. 2:15; 2 Cor. 6:17.
II. IT TAKES FAITH AND COURAGE TO DO GOD’S WILL, 2 Co 5:7; 2 Pet 1:5; 1 Cor 16:13
A. To Leave Sinful Pleasures,
Heb. 11:24-26; 1 Cor. 6:9-11.
III. ALL OF GOD’S COMMANDMENTS ARE IMPORTANT; WE MUST DO ALL – TO OBEY ONLY PART IS FUTILE, Matt. 28:18-20; Acts 10:33; Jas. 2:10.
A. God’s Grace is obtained by
an Obedient Faith, Titus 2:10-11.
IV. KEEP YOUR EYES ON THE GOAL.
A. On Christ, Heb. 12:1-2 (Lk.
6:40; Col. 3:10).
V. CONSEQUENCES OF DISOBEDIENCE, Gen. 19:26; Gal. 6:7-8; Heb. 2:1-3 (1 Ths. 5:2-3)
VI. FLEE TO SAFETY! 2 Tim. 2:22 (1 Cor. 10:13).
You can find the complete outline of this sermon at BIBLE ANSWERS
Scripture Reading: Matthew 22:41-46
I. OUR SAVIOR, Lk. 2:11 (Acts 4:12).
A. Came to Save
the Lost, Lk. 19:10; Matt. 1:21; Jno. 4:42 (Rom. 3:23); Rom. 5:9.
II. OUR LORD, Eph. 4:5; Phil. 2:9-11.
A. A Ruler: He
Exercises Dominion, Matt. 22:42-45 (Psa. 110:1); 28:18 (Eph. 1:21-23); Phil.
III. OUR MODEL, 1 Pet. 2:21.
A. Jesus has
Walked the Path before us:
IV. OUR LIFE, Col. 3:4.
A. Source of
Life, (originator, “Prince of life”, Acts 3:15); Jno. 1:4; 6:51.
V. OUR LOVE, Jno. 14:15.
A. Our Actions Define our Love, Jno. 14:19-24; 1 Jno. 3:16-19.
VI. OUR PEACE, Jno. 16:33. [Prince of peace]
A. Jesus is our
Peace, Eph. 2:13-18.
VII. OUR HOPE OF GLORY, Col. 1:27.
Christian’s Hope, Rom. 5:2 (1 Pet. 1:3).
Racial Prejudice and the Gospel
Over the week we have heard Rev. Jeremiah Wright of the Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago speak in regrettable tones and hateful language against America and against whites in America. We have heard Barak Obama speak of the “typical white person”. Many whites in America are also guilty of racial attitudes, words and conduct. But, just identifying racial words and actions like these and others will not solve the problem.
God is colorblind; often men are not (1 Sam. 16:7). History is filled with the prejudice of one race against another. Whatever the particular causes, it is not God’s will that anyone should hold prejudice in their heart toward another (Jas. 2:1).
One basic problem with racism is judging another person based on appearance; it is not judging righteous judgment (Jno. 7:24). You and I have no control over the color of our skin or our ethic heritage. But we do have control over the character of our heart, and that is what concerns the Lord. In Christ “there is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Gal. 3:28; cf. Col. 3:11).
Yes, people of all races have acted hatefully toward each other for millennia, including here in America. The solution to all such sins is in the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Lord calls for the repentance of the prejudiced and for forgiveness from those sinned against.
Until people who speak and act out of prejudice lay aside their pride and repent, prejudice will continue to cause trouble where God wants peace. And, until the one sinned against will be like Jesus on the cross and forgive the sinners (“Father, forgive them…”), hardened hearts will prevail and strife will continue. In such cases, the greatest tragedy is that Satan wins the souls of both.
Created by Chuck Sibbing. 03/24/2008
The Spirit's Sword is a free,
weekly publication of the Mt. Baker church of Christ, Bellingham, WA