And take…the sword of the Spirit, which  is the word of God.   Ephesians 6:17


Volume 15, Number 24

Published by
Mt. Baker
church of Christ

1860 Mt. Baker HWY
Mailing Address:

       P.O. Box 30821
Bellingham, WA 98228
       (360) 752-2692

Bible Classes..........9:30 AM
Worship..10:30AM; 6:00PM

Bible Classes.........7:00 PM
All sing last Wednesday

Web sites:
Mt. Baker church
Bible Answers

Editor......Joe R. Price

Morris Bass
Rick Holt

Aaron Bass
Rich Brooks
Mike Finn
Dan Head


In this issue:

Why We Need a Plan of Salvation
John Isaac Edwards

Men teach many conflicting ideas about salvation, but God’s plan for saving man is simple and clearly revealed in the New Testament. Why do we need a plan of salvation? Because...

Man Is a Sinner. Paul wrote, “For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). Sins are not inherited, but are committed as we transgress God’s law. John said, “...sin is the transgression of the law” (1 John 3:4). The word “sin” comes from an ancient Greek term. When an archer missed his target with his arrow, he was said to have sinned. Sin means to miss the mark. Because we have missed the mark, we need a plan of salvation.

Sin Leads to Death. There is a high price to be paid for sin. “For the wages of sin is death...” (Romans 6:23). “...sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death” (James 1:15). The death here is spiritual – eternal separation from God in hell. To avoid this death, our sins must be forgiven by God. Thus, we need a plan of salvation.

Goodness Alone Does Not Save. Goodness alone did not save Cornelius. A reading of Acts 10 will show that Cornelius was a good moral man. He was “a devout man, and one that feared God with all his house, which gave much alms to the people, and prayed to God alway” (v. 2). Most would think that a fellow like Cornelius is saved already and has no need of a plan of salvation. We know that Cornelius was not a saved man for he had to hear “words whereby thou and all thy house shall be saved” (Acts 11:14).

Man Must Do What the Lord Commands.  Jesus said, “Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven” (Matthew 7:21). Jesus is the “author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him” (Hebrews 5:9). Man, being a free moral agent, has the right to choose to obey the Lord and be saved, or to reject what the Lord says and be “...punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power” (2 Thessalonians 1:7-9). Man is lost in sin and cannot save himself by himself. Jeremiah declared, “O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps” (Jeremiah 10:23). Therefore, God has made salvation available to all men. “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men” (Titus 2:11). 

-The Terre Haute Speaker, Feb. 12, 2012


Remarriage and Repentance
Joe R. Price

From time to time we receive Bible questions through our Bible Answers website. Here is one we answered this week (with a few additional comments scattered throughout).

Q: I have a question that I need to have answered. I read your article concerning divorce and remarriage. You said that in order to repent, a person must get out of the marriage in which adultery is being committed. I understand if it’s just one divorce and remarriage but what if it’s been several? Here’s the situation: A certain woman is in her 5th marriage and happily so. Her 4th marriage ended with the death of her husband. The first 3 ended in divorce. The second ex-husband is still living. I don't know if the 1st and 3rd ones are or not. In order for the woman and, of course, her present husband to not be living in adultery, would all of her ex-husbands have to dead or just the first one?

     I am very serious in wanting an answer to this question. I hope you’ll have time to answer it for me. Thank you.

A: To be brief, marriage is for life (Matt. 19:4-6). Jesus gave only one cause for one party in a marriage to possibly remarry: “And I say unto you, Whosoever shall put away his wife, except for fornication, and shall marry another, committeth adultery: and he that marrieth her when she is put away committeth adultery” (Matt. 19:9, ASV).

Any subsequent marriage results in adultery unless one puts away his/her mate because of the mate’s fornication. (Fornication is a general term for sexual immorality.) For the person in your question to have the right to remarry she would have had to put away each husband for the cause of fornication. To put away one’s mate for any other reason forfeits remarriage. To do so one actually contributes to the mate’s sin of adultery in a subsequent remarriage (see Matt. 5:32).

Romans 7:2-3 illustrates the lifelong nature of marriage and notes the adultery that occurs in remarriage (the exception clause of Matt. 19:9 is not mentioned here): “For the woman who has a husband is bound by the law to her husband as long as he lives. But if the husband dies, she is released from the law of her husband. So then if, while her husband lives, she marries another man, she will be called an adulteress; but if her husband dies, she is free from that law, so that she is no adulteress, though she has married another man” (NKJV). Were it not for the exception stated in Matthew 19:9 (“except for fornication”), all remarriage before the death of a mate would be adulterous (see Lk. 16:18 and Mk. 10:11-12 which do not state the exception). As it is, when one puts away a mate for that cause the one innocent of fornication may remarry.

The options of the person who sunders a marriage in violation of Matthew 19:6 are clearly stated in 1 Corinthians 7:11: “let her remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband”. To repent of the adultery of an unscriptural remarriage means one must cease the relationship (Matt. 19:9; Acts 26:20; Rev. 9:20-21). Repentance without its fruit of righteousness (ceasing sin) is empty and non-existent (Lk. 3:8-14; cf. Acts 19:17-20).

Matthew 19:10-12 is a helpful summary that exhorts all of us to have ears to hear the Lord on this serious subject by humbly accepting His stated will on the matter. 


You can find the complete outline of this sermon plus PowerPoint and MP3 Audio files at BIBLE ANSWERS

Teach Me, O Lord

(Psalm 25)

Scripture Reading:  Psalms 25:1-7

1. David pleads in earnest prayer for God’s forgiveness, deliverance and protection.
2. 25:4-5: David wants the Lord to be his Instructor, his Mentor.
3. David would exercise the patience of faith and wait on the Lord (25:3, 21).
4. Learning from Christ brings forgiveness, deliverance and protection if we live by faith, Jno. 6:44-45; Matt. 11:28-29; Heb. 11:33-34.


  A. We Must Acknowledge Our Sins, Psa. 25:6-8, 11 (16), 18; Psa. 69:5; 32:5; 34:18.
  B. We Must be Humble, Psa. 25:9; Matt. 11:25; Lk. 15:18-19 (18:13); 1 Cor. 8:1.
  C. We Must be Obedient to God’s Will, Psa. 25:10; Matt. 7:21.
  D. We Must be Reverent before God, Psa. 25:12-14; Acts 10:34-35 (Heb. 13:5-6).
  E. We Must always Trust in God, Psa. 25:2-3, 15, 20-21; Heb. 6:11-12; 11:36.


  A. To have Courage and Patient Endurance when Opposed for the Sake of Truth, Psa. 25:1-3; Matt. 5:11-12.
B. Trust that the Way of the Gospel is Right and that Truth and Christians will be Vindicated, 25:19-20; Psa. 37:1-11; 1 Pet. 4:16 (13); 2 Ths. 1:4-7; Gal. 6:7-8.


1. Show me Your ways: Jesus did, 1 Pet. 2:21.
2. Teach me Your paths: Jesus does, Matt. 28:18-20 (7:13-14).
3. Lead me in Your truth: Jesus does, Jno. 10:14, 27-29.
4. David’s prayer was answered.
5. Live by faith and God will answer you.


You can find the complete outline of this sermon plus PowerPoint and MP3 Audio files at BIBLE ANSWERS

Necessary Inferences: Judging what is Right Bible Authority (10)

Scripture Reading:  Luke 12:54-57

1. How to establish and apply Bible authority has always been attacked, Matt. 15:3, 7-9.
2. Jesus expects us to judge what is right by drawing correct inferences from the evidence that exists (what His word says), Lk. 12:54-57.


  A. Necessary inference (NI) is a matter of judging “righteous judgment” based on revealed truth, Jno. 7:24; Matt. 22:31-32; Jno. 21:20-23; Acts 26:9, 23:1.
  B. NI will harmonize with all that is revealed and previously known to be true, 2 Pet. 3:4-9; 3:16.
  C. NI is the only conclusion that can be inferred from what is said or done; Gen. 1:1; Gen. 12:10 and 13:1; Matt. 3:16.
  D. NI is a conclusion or judgment that is inferred from what is known, Lk. 12:54-57; Jno. 3:2; 9:30-33.
  E. NI is a decisive way of establishing Bible authority, Acts 15:12 (20:7; Matt. 19:9).


  A. Some Necessary Inferences that Bind Truth upon Us, Acts 15:12; Rom. 1:20; Jno. 20:30-31; Matt. 22:31-32; Exo. 20:11; Acts 20:7; Matt. 19:9.
  B. Personal Scruples of Conscience must not be Bound on Others, Rom. 14:1. 


1. NI establishes divine authority.
2. Accomplished by carefully holding to word of Christ without speculations… 1 Tim. 6:3-4


(Current events in the light of Scripture)

"The Voice" is Not a Translation
Joe R. Price

Thomas Nelson has published “The Voice” as a new translation of the Bible. It is far, far from that. It offers us a Bible that is written like a screenplay and “reads like a novel”. Here is a sample:

Adam (pointing at the woman): It was she! The woman You gave me as a companion put the fruit in my hands, and I ate it.

God (to the woman): What have you done?

Eve: It was the serpent! He tricked me, and I ate.”

Later, Eve bears her first son, Cain.

Eve (excited): Look, I have created a new human, a male child, with the help of the Eternal.”

(“New Bible translation has screenplay format”, AP by Travis Loller, Yahoo!News)

     The reporter goes on to say “The Voice” “not only reformats the Bible but also inserts words and phrases into the text to clarify the action or smooth transitions. These words are generally in italics so the reader can tell what the additions are. At other points, the order of verses is changed to make the story read better” (Ibid).

     Man does not have the right to change God’s word to “make the story read better” (Rev. 22:18-19). (It reads just fine, thank you!) As “The Voice” reformats the Bible it is no longer God’s word at all. “The Voice” becomes nothing more than the words and imaginations of men.

     Failing to respect the Bible as the verbally inspired word of God leads to corrupting the biblical text in the name of accessibility (2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Sam. 23:2).

     To those who invented “The Voice”, the end justifies the means. “Getting readers to feel engaged in the story is exactly what the creators of “The Voice” had in mind, Couch said. We had an 82-year-old woman who told us that she had never understood the Bible before” (Ibid). She still hasn’t understood the Bible; she has understood somebody’s alternation of the Bible.

     We are charged with changing ourselves into God’s will; not with changing God’s word (Jas. 1:21-25). 


Created by Chuck Sibbing, last updated.  08/06/2012

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