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


Volume 24, Number 22

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


In this issue:

Is God Lying About His Creation?

Joe R. Price

Images from the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) have renewed discussions of the age of the universe. Stars and forces measuring 13.6 billion light years from the earth are said to be within 200 million years of the Big Bang (“What Is the James Webb Space Telescope?,”

NASA explains, “The big bang is how astronomers explain the way the universe began. It is the idea that the universe began as just a single point, then expanded and stretched to grow as large as it is right now—and it is still stretching!” (“What is the Big Bang?,”

Did God create the universe with a Big Bang from which our present universe (including humans) came into being over billions and billions of years?

No, not according to the Bible. One cannot simultaneously believe the Big Bang theory and the Bible’s account of creation.

(1) The Big Bang theory does not account for the origin of matter. It does not answer the question of origins but only postulates what happened to matter that already existed. Yet, matter is not eternal; It had a beginning. Science does not and cannot answer how matter originated.

(2) The Bible account of creation 1 accounts for the origin of the physical universe. It declares God existed before it and created it (Gen. 1:1; John 1:1-3). God spoke the heavens and the earth into existence (Psalm 33:6-9).

(3) The days of creation contradict the Big Bang theory. The Big Bang demands billions of years to form and expand the universe, the earth, and all life. However, the Bible speaks clearly of an “evening and morning” as it enumerates the six days of creation (Gen. 1:5, 8, 13, 19, 23, 31).  

Those who use science to interpret the Bible say the days of Genesis 1 are long eons of time (millions and millions of years). By rejecting the 24-hour days of creation, they reject the inspiration of God’s word.

Those who use the Bible to appreciate the natural world find the harmony that exists between science and revealed truth. 

Hugh Ross, astrophysicist and author of “Why the Universe is the Way that It Is,” is a proponent of God using the Big Bang theory to create the universe. He says “days” in Genesis 1 must be ages or God is lying to us (Biblical Evidence for Long Creation Days).

Ross says to conclude God created the universe with the appearance of age makes God a liar since the heavens speak of God’s glory and handiwork (Psalm 19:1; 104).

Both the Old and New Testaments declare God cannot lie; We agree with Ross on that (Num. 23:19; Titus 1:2). The physical world declares God’s power and divinity (Jer. 51:15; Rom. 1:20).

Did God lie to us when Adam was fully mature when first created (Gen. 2)? Adam appeared to be much older than he was from the moment his life began (Gen. 2:7-8). Like others, Ross assumes the physical world is as ancient as it looks. This assumption denies the Bible’s account of creation and forms the basis for measuring the duration of the universe’s existence by measuring its distance.

Finally, Jesus rejected the Big Bang theory. He said, “From the beginning of the creation, God made them male and female” (Mark 10:6). The beginning of creation is not billions of years after the “Big Bang” when humans evolved from lower life forms. (Or did Jesus also lie to us?)

The Big Bang creation model promoted by Hugh Ross is the real lie. We believe in God’s word, which says God created the heavens and the earth with a word, not a bang. The fantastic images from deep space confirm our Creator's enormity, power, wisdom, and providence.


Be Strong in Grace

Joe R. Price

You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus.” (2 Timothy 2:1, NKJV)

As Paul’s death drew near, he encouraged Timothy to be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. Timothy would need this strength just as Paul did when “all those in Asia” (and others) turned away from him (2 Tim. 1:15; 4:10).

Christians stand in grace, having accessed its salvation by faith (Rom. 5:1-2; Eph. 2:8-9). Like Timothy, we need to be strong in grace. Consider these applications for Christians.

(1) Be strong in grace by teaching the gospel of grace. The gospel is the “word of His grace” (Acts 20:32, 24). Grace is forfeited when the gospel is perverted (Gal. 1:6-9; 5:4). Therefore, our gospel teaching must be accurate, in harmony with the grace of Christ and the teaching His word reveals (Titus 2:11-12).

(2) Be strong in grace by living in Christ instead of sin. Being strong in grace means no longer living in sin (Rom. 6:1-2). Sin is no longer our habit. God’s grace fortifies us to serve God instead of sin (Rom. 6:11-16).

(3) Be strong in grace by speaking what is needful. Our speech should “always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one” (Col. 4:6). Take care to speak with grace and mercy toward others (2 Tim. 1:16-18). As Solomon said, “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. The tongue of the wise uses knowledge rightly, but the mouth of fools pours forth foolishness” (Prov. 15:1-2).

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you. Amen” (1 Thess. 5:28). ­ -Sword Tips #2354


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

By the Grace of God (Part 1)
Joe R. Price

Scripture Reading:  Titus 3:1-8

   Christians stand in and rejoice in "the true grace of God” as we follow the gospel that commands our obedient faith to be blessed by God in Christ, Luke 17:9-10.


  A. Sinners are Saved, Eph. 2:1, 4-7, 8-9.
    1. By grace: The source, the gift of mercy and love.
    2. Through faith: The sinner's faith, produced by the gospel.
    3. Not of yourselves; Salvation is God's gift (1 Cor. 16:3).

  B. We are Justified, Rom. 3:24; Titus 3:7.
    1. Condition: Through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus.
    2. Access into grace through faith (not by LOM), Rom. 5:1.

  C. Accepted in the Beloved, Eph. 1:6.

    1. Grace is only obtained “in Christ;” By grace we are made gracious.
    2. Saved freely by His grace, Rom. 3:24.
    3. Only when baptized into Christ, Gal. 3:26-27 (action of faith).
    4. Grace is applied and blessings are bestowed when the sinner is baptized, cf. Titus 3:4-5, 7.

  D. I Am What I Am, 1 Cor. 15:10 (1 Tim. 1:12-16; Eph. 1:7).

1. God’s grace has appeared and offers salvation to every sinner.
2. The gospel calls the lost to salvation by grace through faith, commanding a willing faith that obeys the Master, Heb. 5:8-9.


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

Things Grace Does Not Do (Part 2)
Joe R. Price

Scripture Reading:  Romans 6:12-18

1. God’s grace makes salvation available through blood of Christ, Titus 2:11; Acts 20:24.
2. Grace saves through faith, Eph. 2:8-9.
3. But we are not saved by grace alone. There are some things grace does not do.


  A.    Grace Does Not Make it Impossible for Christians to Sin and Fall Away (be lost), Gal. 5:3-7 (James 5:19-20; 1 Cor. 10:11-13).

  B. Grace Does Not Turn Sin into Righteousness, Rom. 6:1-2, 11-14; Gal. 2:18.
  1. Grace does not:
    a. Turn vain worship into true worship,  Lev. 10:1-2 (John 4:24).
    b. Turn immorality into moral purity, Rev. 9:20-21.

  C. Grace Does Not Minimize (overwhelm) Truth, John 1:17; Acts 20:32 (does not turn an error into truth), Gal. 2:20-21 (Col. 1:6).

  D. Grace Does Not Make Doctrine Secondary, Gal. 1:6-10.

  E. Grace Does Not Sanction Fellowship with Sin (and those who condone them), Heb. 13:9; 2 John 9-11.

  F. Grace Does Not Save When We Do Not Repent, Rom. 2:4-5.

1. Christians have peace with God and stand in His grace through Christ (who gives us access to it) by faith, Rom. 5:1-2 (1 Pet. 5:12).
2. Be careful; We can fall from grace and be lost, Gal. 5:4 (1 Cor. 10:12)..


(Current events in the light of Scripture)

Military Recruitment Down
Joe R. Price

It was reported this week that “The Army faces the worst recruiting environment since the all-volunteer force was created in 1973. The result: The service won’t make its goal for recruits and faces a shrinking force in a dangerous world” ( Only 23% of Americans ages 17-24 can meet the Army’s entry requirements is only 23%. This affects national security.

What about recruitment in the Lord’s Army? Are its ranks bulging with disciples eager to fight evil and error? Sadly, not so much. It is disheartening to hear of Christians who want no part of a “militant” message of truth against sin and religious error. Instead, they enjoy the sweet sound of “positivism” at the expense of truth’s reproof and rebuke (2 Tim. 4:2-4). Like the grumbling Israelites who refused to go up and take the land of Canaan after God had delivered them from Egyptian bondage, these complainers discourage the hearts of Christians who fight the good fight of faith (Deut. 1:21, 26-33; 1 Tim. 6:12; 2 Tim. 4:5).

A ”softer message” will not save the lost. Bible teaching that condemns sin identifies sinners and holds them accountable before God is too much for some to handle. Like the Pharisees, they are offended by the truth of Jesus (Matt. 15:12, 3-11). A “good soldier of Jesus Christ” must endure hardship, and they want no part of that (2 Tim. 2:3). Little wonder the devil is advancing his cause among the churches. Accepting social drinking, immodest clothing, profane language, irreverent conduct, and more reveal an out-of-shape “army,” ill-equipped in faith to overcome the world (1 John 5:4; 2:15-17; Heb. 3:12).

Christians who will not fight the good fight of faith will not “lay hold on eternal life” (1 Tim. 6:12). So let us encourage and engage in the battle against evil with truth and trust in the Lord (Eph. 6:10-17).


Created by Chuck Sibbing, last updated.  07/25/2022

The Spirit's Sword is a free, weekly publication of the Mt. Baker church of Christ, Bellingham, WA
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