Proper Use of Freedom

 Scripture Text: I Corinthians 10:14-33
The Proper Use of Freedom

A Review of Chapter 8 and 9

Chp. 8 Paul said that for a mature Christian, the meat itself wasn’t a sinful thing.  We know that an idol isn’t something real, and so the meat is just meat.  Or liberty allows us to eat.

But we must ask ourselves, How it would affect other Christians? What about those who just came out of paganism?

And so Paul lets us know that there are some things that we are free to do, but we need to be careful about how our actions affect others.

Chp. 9, Paul gives up some things.  In verse 14 he says “those who preach the gospel should live from the gospel.” (Verse 12) “Nevertheless we have not used this right, but endure all things lest we hinder the gospel of Christ.”

We see this principle used in the marriage union.  One person often gives “things” up because there is something more precious to them than getting what they want all of the time.

Paul would give anything up to preach the Gospel.

Chapter 10, Flee Idolatry

Read I Corinthians 10:14-22. Can we eat a meal with non-Christians who view the meal as worship to their god?

When we partake of the Communion, we are announcing to one another and to the world around us that this is who we agree with, this is who we have something in common with.  When we as Christians participate in the Lord’s Supper, we are sharing together in the blood of Christ and sharing together in the body of Christ.

For the Christians in Corinth to share a table with idolaters was to identify with the, to share something in common with the idol and with all those who sacrificed to it.  There was nothing innocent about it.  And so it is totally inconsistent for Christians to participate in any expression of worship that exalts something else as Lord.

A Christian cannot “drink of the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons:…”

Principles for Using Christian Freedom

Read I Corinthians 10:23-24.  Our concern needs to be for one another.  I need to be sensitive to my brother in Christ and not do anything that might cause him to fall away from Christ.

Read I Corinthians 10:25-27. If it doesn’t bother my conscience to buy meat in the market, then buy it and eat it. 

Read I Corinthians 10:28-29. If you’re with someone who’s making a big deal about where the mat came from, then don’t eat it.  Don’t argue about it. 

Read I Corinthians 10:31-33. My life is not all about getting to do what I want to do.  My life as a Christian is about one thing, glorifying God. His glory is to be our life commitment.  Everything else pales by comparison.

Application for Today

Christians are not simply islands unto themselves who live an “every-man-for-himself” kind of life.  When we are thinking about what to do, the weaknesses of those who are new to the faith or who are immature in their faith must be taken into consideration. A person who is committed to Jesus Christ can never ride roughshod over the ideas or feelings of someone else for whom Christ died.

Paul addressed this same issue in Romans 14:5-6 when he wrote about observing “holy days” or holidays. He said, “One person esteems one day above another; another esteems every day alike.” In other words, some people observe holidays and some people don’t. So what’s the solution? “Let each be fully convinced in his own mind. He who observes the day, observes it to the Lord; and he who does not observe the day, to the Lord he does not observe it.“

Maintain a respect for one another even through the differences.


If the Bible settles it, great!  If not, then consider: How will it affect your brothers and sisters in Christ? Will it cause any of them to fall away or lose their faith because of your actions? What about you, will it draw you closer to God or take you further from him? Will it bring God glory and honor, or will it serve to dishonor him?

Our commitment to Jesus Christ demands that we balance our Christian freedom with our responsibility to one another and our responsibility to God. 

“Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.”


Cool to be gay?

Homosexuality: Cool to be Gay?

Sam Dilbeck tells this story: While substitute teaching a few years ago, I noticed two girls surrounded by an entourage of nervous boys.  Intrigued, I waited to see if any of the boys would have enough courage to engage the girls.  Finally a few of the boys did.  They talked for a few minutes with a lot of awkward grins, hushed giggles, and hair twisting.  I listened to their discussion and was appalled.  The girls were trying to convince the boys that they were lesbians, not because they were, but because it was cool.  That was in 1997, the year Ellen came out as the first openly gay lead character on primetime television. 

Now, over a decade later, the influence of the homosexual agenda on American (and global) culture cannot be ignored.  As the homosexual lifestyle gains acceptance, how should Christians react?

Overhauling Straight America

A decade before those sixth grade girls played chic lesbians, Marshall Kirk and Hunter Madsen outlined a strategic plan to change America’s perception of the homosexual lifestyle.  “The first order of business is the desensitization of the American public concerning gays and gay rights…You can forget about trying to persuade the masses that homosexuality is a good thing.  But if you can get them to think that it is just another thing with a shrug of their shoulders, then you battle for legal and social rights are virtually won.”  (Kirk and Pill “The Overhauling of Straight America” 1987)

The Kirk-Madsen strategy contains six steps for normalizing homosexuality.

  1.  Talk about “gay” and “gayness” as loudly and often as possible.
  2. Portray gays as victims, not aggressive challengers.
  3. Seek to give protectors of homosexuality a just cause.
  4. Control the image of homosexuals and make them look good.
  5. Make opponents of homosexual activity look bad.
  6. Raise money for their homosexual overhaul.  They estimate that 10-15 million practicing homosexuals could raise a war chest of $20-30 million. Their plan also advocates soliciting funds from individuals and corporations that are sympathetic to the homosexual agenda.


This strategy has entered mainstream America like a Trojan horse and eroded her moral sensibilities.  Today, anyone who opposes same-sex activity is vilified and labeled “homophobic.”  Few people possess the courage to stand against their agenda—not in politics, not in the media, and not in the culture.

Even among Christians, gayness is growing more acceptable. The liberal theology of postmodernism calls into question the absolute condemnation of homosexuality.  Spencer Burke, a postmodern theologian, laments the inability to question Biblical teaching, “What to earn a place on the… (Christian) black list, admit your uncertainty about homosexuality as a Biblically condemned sin.”

What Does the Bible Say?

The Bible clearly states that homosexuality is an unacceptable practice before God.  God presided over the first marriage.  He then gave the first command to Adam and Eve, “Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth”  Genesis 1:28

In the Law of Moses, God clearly condemns homosexuality.

Leviticus 18:22 “You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; it is an abomination.”

Leviticus 20:13 “”If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them.”

God’s attitude did not change in the millennia after the Law of Moses; the New Testament writers describe homosexuality as “against nature” and “unrighteous.”

Romans 1:26-27 “For their women exchanged natural relations for those that are contrary to nature; and the men likewise gave up natural relations with women and were consumed with passion for one another, men committing shameless acts with men and receiving in themselves the due penalty for their error.”

I Corinthians 6:9-10 “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God?  Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, not thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God.”

God’s view is the same today as it was then.

Hebrews 13:8 “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”

When we examine the historical evidence, we can see the Christians are far from being homophobic or advocates of hate-speech.  Americans have the right and obligation to speak out about an unhealthy, unproductive, degenerate lifestyle that erodes the moral fabric of our society.


Homosexuality is not a new lifestyle; it has always existed as a moral issue.  In America today, advocates of homosexuality have elevated it to a divisive political issue.  Some insist that homosexuals have the “right” to marry, to adopt children, and to be accepted as normal by society and law.  They shout “hate crime” when Christians teach that homosexuality is sinful. 

Hiding behind Love

In our postmodern culture (postmodern: nothing can be said to be true, or right, or just), the term situational ethics seems to rear its head regularly.  We don’t have to look much further than the local newspapers or TV shows to see it.  There may be not a banner that floats across the screen alerting you of what is going on, but we see it practices broadly.

Did you know that a man by the name of Joseph Fletcher (1905-1991), once an Episcopal priest, is often given credit for pioneering the modern situational ethics model?  As a matter of fact, the magic carpet that he rode, which America seems to have jumped on with him, was rooted in a misunderstanding of the love of God.  It was Mr. Fletcher’s misunderstanding that as long as love is a person’ intention, then whatever the end is, the person is justified. He inappropriately pulled this philosophy from 1 John 4:8 where the apostle of love writes, “God is love.”

Love is a short, for-letter word with significant ramifications.  However, it’s also a word that has come to have different definitions as we, as individuals, have grown and matured. 

As a child, we would use the word as a response to someone taking care of us.  This was a term of appreciation and gratitude.

When the teen years hit, the word took on a meaning more of feelings as, perhaps, we told that crush, “I love you>” 

On the wedding day the word love became synonymous with the commitment we devoted to another person.  Surely it encompassed the feelings too; however, from that moment on, “I love you” goes far beyond feelings. When we became parents, love as used with our children meant that we had to make some pretty tough decisions about rearing them, but always with their best interests in mind. 

While love can definitely be an emotional response and a word of affection denoting a commitment, it is at times used as a reason for doing something.  For instance, when we discipline our children, the reason is love.  When a mother cares for her family, or a father goes to work, the motivation is love. 

However, when it comes to the arena of morality, do we ever use love as a measure to making decisions about issues like euthanasia or in deciding if something like lying is appropriate or not?  Some do, and it’s their “love” that drives them to rationalize what the correct answer is.”

Although love is wonderful and the Bible definitely speaks of the love of God towards us as the motivating factor in sending His Son to die on the cross (Jn. 3:16), the question remains, “Is that the determining factor for what is Truth? 

The answer is both “yes” and “not completely.”

In the book of 1 John the word love occurs 46 times.  We see John writing about the love that we are to have one for another, God’s love for us, and the love we are to have for God.  If we study the concept completely with in the book of 1 John, specifically in 1 John 5:3, we read, “For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments.  And His commandments are not burdensome.” 

When studied in context, it doesn’t take us long to understand that John was not saying that love was separate from God being our standard.  Actually, he reiterates that our love for God and His for us involves us keeping Him as the measure of right and wrong.  He is to be our standard when it comes to the decisions that are easy and the decision that are difficult.

So, was Joseph Fletch correct when he came to his conclusion that as long as love is our motivation, the outcome will be correct?  Only if that love is consistent with the source of love—God.  Even with love as the motivation, if the action itself directly contradicts the inspired Word of God (homosexuality, euthanasia, lying, etc.) and thus violates the very nature of God, it is wrong and is sin. 

There are many activities and behaviors that hide behind love; however, that doesn’t mean God accepts sin just because some try to justify it.  This is one situation where love is not the answer.  Love for God and Truth is the answer.

Sifting Through the Rubble

Religious leaders attempting to adapt the Church to modern culture want to accept aberrant behavior as normal.  This includes finding ways to sanctify homosexuality.  Truly, Troy has fallen, but what can be made of its ruins.  

Pandora’s Box has been opened and will probably never be closet on the homosexual agenda.  Like adultery, fornication, divorce, drunkenness, and a host of other sins, homosexuality has come out of the closet and become a visible part of a decadent society.   

We must be Christians. The Christian response to sin has been the same since the cross.  We cannot give people a reason to vilify us through rude and abusive behavior toward practicing gays (I Peter 3:16). 

 We must become friends to the sinners like Jesus (Matthew 11:19).  We cannot ignore or treat them as repulsive.  Instead, we must confront their sin with the compassion of Christ.  Repentance is vital to their salvation, and we must do what we can to help them leave the clutches of sin and cleave to the Savior (James 5:20).

We must teach people about the dangers of sin—not just homosexuality, but all sin (Romans 6:23).  We must be passionate about renouncing sin and proclaiming the Word of God “for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes.”

We must teach our children/grandchildren about the destructive nature of sin and seek ways to protect them from its grip.  But at the same time, we must show them how to be merciful, patient and forgiving.  We cannot instill the sin of hatred and prejudice in the next generation.

It took a couple of sixth grade girls to show how well the Kirk-Madsen plan has overhauled American thinking on homosexuality.  Like any sin, homosexuality affects our culture, just as it affected the culture of the first century. 

While the mechanism of its influence has changed, its results have not. Today, the world still needs Jesus and Christians are His ambassadors to the world.  We must stand opposed to sin while reaching out with the power of grace.  May we have the strength to confront the sin, compassion to accept the sinner, and the wisdom to convert souls.

Think Magazine, April 2009.  Writers, Sam Dilbeck, Joe Wells and Luke Griffin sited.

Marriage Takes 3

Marriage Takes 3

What use to be uncommon and unspoken has become common.  Divorce, it has reached epidemic proportions.  According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the ratio of marriages to divorces is 2 to 1.

While a husband and wife may vow to love one another in sickness and in health, for richer and poorer, and for better and worse, the reality is that many individuals only stick around during times of wealth, health, and happiness.

You may remember that in times past families had many children.  You may even be one of 4 or more siblings.   Today children oftentimes have many parents.  There is the Daddy that was here, and the Daddy that is here, and the Daddy that will be here when this one decides to go on.

Sadly, the concept of commitment has been lost in our “disposable” and “instant gratification” world.  There is no doubt that the tentacles of divorce reach deeply inside most—if not all—church families.  And those tentacles have caused many problems throughout the body of Christ.  While we don’t talk about it much for fear we may offend some, this topic desperately needs to be addressed in order to stem the epidemic.

Here is what I want my sons to know about divorce.  As I speak to you today, listen in on what I want them to know and to understand. These are things we have discussed and things that we have tried to teach.

A good marriage is one of the richest blessings you will ever know.  It is an institution that was formed by God.

Genesis 2: 22-24:  “And the rib that the Lord God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man.  Then the man said, “This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.”  Therefore a man shall leave his father and his mother and hold fast to his wife, and they shall become one flesh.

While we pray that you are able to experience this one day, we want each one of you to realize that you do not have to be married or be a parent to serve God faithfully. Consider the biblical examples of faithful individuals who were single or barren/ childless and still served the Lord.  (Paul, Dorcas)  They were faithful to God even though they were not married.

There are many questions that you need to ask of yourself and of this person to whom you want to marry.  As you begin to date and to go out with potential mates…

Look for someone who will help you go to heaven.  If they are not spiritual, interested in God and His church, then they are not the person for you.

Dating is not a game.  Dating is not a social outlet.  If you want a social group to be with, go out with a group, join an activity, play on a sports team.  Dating is serious business.

There’s more to it than just good looks.  I want you to find someone that you are attracted to, but there is more to consider as you take this person into your confidence.  Physical beauty if fleeting at best, and the heart is what will last.

If you reach the point to which you are engaged to someone, remember that engaged is not married.  You need to stick to your limits, to your rules of contact.  If you are not married, do not act like you are married. .

Song of Solomon 3:5 “do not stir up or awaken love until it pleases.”

Sons, as the male, you are to be the spiritual leader of your household.  Begin that leadership while dating.  Set the example and live a life devoted to Christ.

Sons, believe it or not, but your mother and I have been praying for your future spouses (and even their parents!) since before you were born.  This topic is so crucial that we believe the time to start teaching you about these things is not when you are a teenager, but when you were still toddlers.

Aside from your decision to become a Christian and your relationship with God, there is nothing more important on this planet than your choices in these matters.  The person that you choose to be your mate will either help or hinder your journey to heaven.

Our prayer is that your mate will be a strong Christian who can help you in your spiritual journey. We hope that as your grow and mature you will select someone with whom to spend your life who has similar values and priorities.  God needs to be first in both of your lives.

Make no mistake about it, good marriage takes a great deal of work.  You won’t receive a “how-to” book along with your marriage certificate.  This is one reason it is so important to keep your marriage God-centered. The relationship you see daily between your mother and I did not happen overnight.  We have been together through good years and bad.  We have had to learn how to communicate effectively with one another, how to air our differences, how to compromise, and how to let our words be reflected in our actions.

With each happy memory and each trial, our relationship has deepened and grown.  However, even after being married as long as we have, we still have to invest time and energy into our marriage.  That is why we try to regularly have “dates” without any children present—to reconnect, rekindle, and grow our own relationship.

While you are a big part of our family, you will not be with us forever.  However, when you leave, we (your mother and I) have to know each other, and to connect with one another.

Your mother and I have a rule that has been in place since the beginning.  We never joke about divorce or use that concept as an option for our lives.  We made this pledge to one another very early in our marriage, and it has been comforting during time of trial.  The Bible is clear that God hates divorce (Malachi 2:16).

Never forget that God joins you together with your mate (Matthew 19:6), and His original intention was that man and woman remain married until death.

Mark 10:2-12 READ

Matthew 19: 8-9 READ

Jesus explains that while divorces were permitted because of the hardness of their hearts, “from the beginning it was not so.”

Keep your marriage intact and avoid divorce.  Invest time and energy in one another.  If you feel things are spiraling out of control, talk to your parents, preacher, shepherds, or godly friends.

Don’t confide problems to a friend of the opposite sex, as that will always compound the problem.  Find a happily married, faithful couple with whom you can spend time and glean wisdom.  Take time to find activities that both you and your spouse’s enjoy, and do those.  Be willing to compromise. And never take your spouse for granted.

The Bible is the best source of how men are to love their wives.

Ephesians 5:25, 33 Read.

The Bible is the best source of how women are to respect their husbands.

Ephesians 5:22-23, 33 again.  Read.

In Matthew 19, Jesus outlines the only allowance for divorce and remarriage—sexual immorality (verse 9).  READ AGAIN.

That’s it.  Unless your spouse dies, marriage has only one way out.  Divorce and remarriage is not allowed simply for irreconcilable differences or because one partner is no longer happy.  Many people have tried to manipulate this passage to find exceptions or to make loopholes. In fact, many men with advanced degrees have desperately tried to argue that they possess a “new found wisdom” about what this Scripture actually means.  But as we have taught you from childhood, you don’t need advanced degrees to understand the important matters of the Bible.   God is able to effectively communicate His plan on marriage and divorce.

Never change your views on biblical matters simply because it has become personal.  Remember, God is immutable (Malachi 3:6)—He and His Word do not change.

It is usually the case that those trying to conjure up “exceptions” to Jesus’ teaching on marriage have personal stakes involved. For instance, maybe their children, other relatives, or friends have divorced for reasons other than sexual immorality, and they want to find a way for them to remarry.  But the Scriptures are clear.

Many try to offer excuses to justify divorce and remarriage such as, “One part was not baptized at the point of marriage,” or “Children are involved,” or “The original intent was not for a biblically permanent marriage.”  They use mental gymnastics to find loopholes between Matthew 19 and I Corinthians 7:10-13. (READ)

Remember, these commands were written to believers and unbelievers, thus baptism does not alter an adulterous marriage.   Re-Read I Corinthians 7:10-13.

The decision to marry is important and should not be entered into lightly, or because of temporal lust.  Your mother and I agree that rather than jumping through hoops and rearranging the original intent or looking for a “way out” years later, your time would be better invested in creating, building, and maintaining a healthy marriage that includes God.

This is why trust is so vital in a marriage.  Go the extra mile and give your spouse information as to where you will be—don’t leave them wondering.  Post a copy of your wedding picture or vows where you can see it often.  Keep that golden band on your finger as a constant reminder.

Remember your parent’s favorite verse, a verse that we try to live by every day.  This verse was read at our wedding.

Psalm 37:4 “Delight yourself in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.”

Finally, here is a poem that says it all.

Marriage Takes 3 (author unknown)

I once thought marriage took Just two to make a go,

But now I am convinced It takes the Lord also.

And not one marriage fails Where Christ is asked to enter,

As lovers come together With Jesus at the center.

But marriage seldom thrives, And homes are incomplete,

Till He is welcomed there To help avoid defeat.

In homes where Christ is first, It’s obvious to see,

Those unions really work, For marriage still takes three.


Marriage is for life.  Take your time now and later, your efforts will pay off.

Take time during the marriage, and you will be blessed.

Jesus’ way is the way we all need to live our lives. He knows best.

Adapted from an article in Think Magazine January 2009 by Brad Harrub.  All words and ideas are his.  Editing was done to fit it into this post.


World View: It Matters

Cultural Morality, Our World View

In a sentence: Moral relativism has become the norm and is the current world view of the majority of Americans.

More than twenty years ago, Allan Bloom observed in his book, The Closing of the American Mind, “there is one thing a professor can be absolutely certain of: almost every student entering the university believes, or says he believes, that truth is relative…The students, of course, cannot defend their opinion. It is something with which they have been indoctrinated.” (pg. 25) 

Bloom was not merely speaking about whether one can know any absolute truths, but also whether there are any absolute moral truths.  Moral relativism argues that there is no absolute and no objective right and wrong.  Relativists believe moral rules are merely personal preferences and arise as a result of one’s cultural, ethnic, or sexual orientation.

Moral relativism has become the norm on televisions, in academia, and among politicians.  It is no longer “shocking” for us to see same-sex relationships on Television.  People see nothing wrong with killing the unborn if it may harm the health of the mother.  Everything is relative.

It has not always been so.  My generation has been immersed in these ideas our entire life.  If you were born in the 1940’s or later this shift in thinking has been projected toward you.  It was only because my generation was also buried in the teachings of Jesus Christ that many of us escaped the full brunt of these attacks. 

In the 1960’s, Joseph Fletcher argued that it was sometimes right to do wrong.  Philosophers like John Warwick Montgomery and pulpits around the nation condemned his “situation ethics,” but the notion of situational morality did not die.

Fletcher believed love, or the “agape ethic,” was superior to the “law ethic,” so that things done out of love fulfilled God’s ethic even if they violated God’s law.  This notion of love as a justification for our behaviors has rapidly spread throughout American society.

For moral relativists, abortion is preferable to raising an unwanted child.  They believe it is better to end a child’s life than to have him grow up unloved or disadvantaged.  Of course, they rarely consider how they may feel about that unwanted child in later days.  Pro-choice people rarely speak of the long-term emotional trauma many mothers of aborted babies feel.

God, however, hates the taking of an innocent life. (Proverbs 6:17) Abortion never shows love to the unborn child.  It is almost as if no one considers that an unwanted child could become wanted or that adoption to a family is possible.

The apostle Paul argued that the law is good, if one used it lawfully. (1 Timothy 1:8).  The law was designed to protect the innocent from evil and ungodly sinners. Moses said, “And the Lord commanded us to do all these statutes, to fear the Lord our God, for our good always, that he might preserve us alive, as we are this day” (Deut. 6:24). 

The law teaches one how to love God and one’s neighbor.  Jesus said, “If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him.  Whoever does not love me does not keep my words.  And the word that you hear is not mine but the Father’s who sent me.” John 14:23-24

Moral relativists often think they are taking the higher moral ground by not judging or excluding anyone.  They speak in relative terms but practice judging and excluding in absolute terms.  Their claim does not match their practice. While they practice inclusiveness with the immoral person, they slander and exclude anyone who disagrees with their inclusiveness.

Moral relativists often claim that the belief in absolute moral truth is mean-spirited, intolerant, exclusivist, and judgmental.  Obviously, and objective view of morality will hold some things to be wrong, but the relativist contradicts himself because he also holds some things to be wrong.  He believes that anyone who says there is objective moral truth is wrong.  This conclusion makes the relativist judgmental and, possible, intolerant. 

If the relativist believes the absolutist to be wrong, he is just as exclusive as anyone else.

 Does my worldview really matter?

Culture War.  The term is bandied about regularly on talk radio, referred to frequently in print and the digital media.  But what is the culture war and how does it affect us?

 The Culture War is a struggle over which path society’s values and norms will take as it develops into the future.  It is ultimately a battle over world views.  The main war is between the Biblical worldview and a secular worldview.  It is a subtle struggle in that, by and large, it is a battle for the mind fought in the marketplace of ideas.  It is not a battle over trivial issues of whether one likes blue or pink, Ford or Chevy.  The Culture War is a struggle over a set of significant issues that touch all of lie and determine how one approaches reality.  In a universe that functions based on laws of nature, societal mores that have long-term consequences are being debated.  In this war, the most frequent victim is Truth and the ones taken captive are often those who do not even realize a conflict is being fought. 

One’s world view attempts to answer questions like:

Why am I here?

How did I get here?

Where did I come from?

Where am I going?

The decisions that we make in daily life will be based on a series of filters and presuppositions (world view) that determine how we approach life.  A world-view is a framework through which one draws conclusions; the lens through which we see the world.

What we believe matters.  The ideas that are within our mind have consequences.  We will choose our world-view as surely as we choose our daily diet.  Our assumptions determine our conclusions.  IF we assume eating donuts and watching television all day long is a healthy lifestyle, we may conclude that we should conduct our life in this manner. 

It is possible to believe something so strongly (and wrongly) that it is hard to believe anything else—even when presented with evidence contrary to our belief.  The long-term consequences of our collective choices will directly impact our lifestyle and outlook. 


A secular world view begins with a starting point of subjectivism.  “There is absolutely no absolute truth” (save for the absolute truth that there isn’t one.) “Whatever you choose to believe is true for you and you alone. Whatever I choose to believe is true for me.  You believe what you want, I’ll believe what I want, and we’ll all get along nicely as long as you cave to my belief”   This is often called “tolerance” today.

At the root of the clash over cultural norms is authority—who determines the standard and what the standard is.  The secular humanist says man’s wisdom trumps all else; therefore, whatever each man decides for himself is right for him.  On the other hand, Christians claim God’s wisdom is the wellspring of authority and that Truth is found in the Bible.

Do you believe in absolute truth?  If not, you are in the majority.  Surveys indicate that people under the age of 36, by and large, do not embrace the concept of absolute truth. How is that possible? In the past, Biblical thinking permeated family life, public education, and community organizations.  Today, many young people are being trained in everything but the Biblical principles that would lead them to believe in absolute truth.

The Bible is being relegated to, at best, a collection of interesting stories or fables with cute morals similar to something in Grimm’s or Aesop’s. 

The pull of the world is strong. In many ways the secular humanists’ agenda and the resulting comprehensive worldview has been allowed to proliferate throughout the world with only limited contrary feedback voiced from Christian circles.  It seems that many Christians have yet to conclude that God, in His providential wisdom, gave humankind a guide to live and the intelligence to discern between right and wrong.

God’s verbally inspired Book has been relegated to a guide for worship and practice on Sunday and has been left to collect dust for the rest of the week.  Instead of looking to the Great Physician for the cure, people—even Christians—are appealing to today’s faddish healers and philosophers for help with everyday problems.

Read Acts 17:24-25 Put emphasis on “he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything.”

Read 2 Peter 1:3 “all things that pertain to life and godliness”

We know that God has addressed every area, every facet, every problem, and every struggle of material consequence that a person may face in this life.  And, God knows that the “philosophy of men” would always be alluring with “persuasive words” according to the “traditions of men” and “basic principles of the world,” (Colossians 2:4, 8)

God knew there would be competition for our minds.  He has provided eternal wisdom for us within the pages of the Bible; by listening to His wisdom while attempting to overcome the everyday trials of life, we will neither be led astray, nor struck in the “futile ways” (I Peter 1:18) that is a result of listening to the traditions and philosophies of men.

Proverbs 14:12 “There is a way that seems right to man, but its end is the way to death”

Biblical Worldview

In the battle for the mind, one would be well served to heed the counsel of Ephesians 6:10-20, and “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil and the heavenly places.” (Skip to verse 14) This verse talks about what we need to protect our soul, the belt of truth.  The belt of truth is essential because belts “hole it all” together.  And Jesus said we could know the Truth and the Truth would set us free. (John 8:31-32)

The Biblical worldview is one that approaches life from the vantage point that acknowledges these truths:

  • The Bible is God’s divine counsel on life and eternity.
  • The Bible is perfectly infallible and directs our every step.
  • This world was created in perfection but is now only a shadow of its former self.
  • This world is now a place of sickness, sadness, and death ushered in by sin.
  • Time here is short; it is just a temporary pilgrimage.
  • This world is not the end.
  • There is a heaven to gain and a hell to shun in eternity.
  • Hope springs eternal when life is bound up in Christ.
  • The creation should seek to align its thoughts with the Creator’s.
  • Using the Bible as a standard, one should think critically/Biblically about the messages received from the world and discern right from wrong thereby.


If you want to develop a Biblical worldview, start today by also getting to know Jesus.

 How?  By reading the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.  Learn to “love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind.” (Luke 10:27).

How? By reading both the Old and New Testaments and getting to know your Father.  Take the proactive step of cleaning up your thought life.

How? By adhering to the counsel of Philippians 4:6-8 and praying prayers of requests, supplications, and thanksgiving, while meditating on thoughts of goodness and righteousness. Change your habits, and change your life.

How? By following like Paul, the admonition found in Romans 12:2 “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.”

How? By studying the Scriptures and growing in faith (I Peter 2:2, 2 Peter 1:5-11). Make it a habit to become preoccupied with knowing God.

What’s your worldview?  Think about it.  It matters!

Adapted from articles by Phil Sanders and Jim Palmer, Think Magazine November 2008. Editing was done to fit their articles into my post.  I do not claim authorship in any fashion.


The Power and the Wisdom of the Cross

I Corinthians 1:18-31
The Power and the Wisdom of the Cross

Problem: The Corinthians were guided by Pride. The problem is, any time we are motivated by pride, we’re being guided by what Paul refers to as “man’s wisdom”, which is just another way of saying, “I’m going to do things the way I think they ought to be done.”

Jeremiah 8:9 “The wise men shall be put to shame; they shall be dismayed and taken; behold, they have rejected the word of the Lord, so what wisdom is in them?

God doesn’t view the Cross the same way the world does.

The very idea that God would take human form, be crucified on a cross, and be raised from the dead in order to provide for man’s forgiveness of sins and entrance into heaven is an idea far too absurd for some people to accept.

The Greek word for foolishness is “moria,” from which we get the English word “moron.”

Even the apostle Peter didn’t understand the cross when he first heard Jesus talk about it.

“And Peter took in aside and began to rebuke him, saying, “Far be it from you, Lord! This shall never happen to you!'” (Matthew 16:22).

Peter thought that the Messiah should demonstrate power and authority. His understanding about the Messiah had no place for a cross. But Peter’s wisdom was contrary to God’s wisdom, and so Jesus’ reply to Peter was a bit sharp: “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me.  For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.” (Matthew 16:23).

Read I Corinthians 1:21-25 The Jews stumbled at the weakness of the cross.

When Jesus came along as the Suffering Servant, it didn’t make any sense and so the Jews refused to accept it.  They shouldn’t have been surprised because passages like Psalm 22 and Isaiah 53 pointed to a Messiah who had to suffer and die. 

You see, dying on the cross doesn’t look like success or power.  It doesn’t look like victory.

The Greeks regarded the Cross as foolishness.

To the Greeks, the cross was absolute, utter foolishness. They were a people who emphasized wisdom. They loved philosophy which means “a love of wisdom”. We still study the profound writings of Greek philosophers like Plato, Aristotle and Socrates.

Reason tells you that babies aren’t born to virgin girls. Reason tells you that God doesn’t become flesh. Reason tells you that almighty God will not allow puny men to nail Him to a cross.

Reason tells you that when a man dies he cannot be resurrected back to life again. None of that makes any sense. So the Greeks looked at the cross as foolishness.

Christians see the power and wisdom of God.

I Cor. 1:24 “but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God.”

 God doesn’t see things the same way the world does, and neither should we. Ironically, the very part of God’s plan and work that seems most ridiculous and useless from man’s perspective actually exhibits his greatest power and greatest wisdom.

God doesn’t view Christians the same way the world does.

Read I Cor. 1:26-28 How Do You Measure Up as a Man?

1. A man is measured by his ability to make money.

2. The cost, style and age of his car.

3. How much hair he has.

4. His strength and size.

5. The job he holds and how successful he is at it.

6. What sports he likes.

7. How many clubs he belongs to.

8. His aggressiveness and reliability.

**Raleigh News and Observer.

God looks at different Criteria

God is looking for men who are humble, meek, gentle, loving and sacrificial.

It’s the feeling of inadequacy that makes people aware that they have need for God, and often draws them to the gospel.

Paul said the church’s appeal to the outcasts and dregs of society demonstrated God’s love and shows that He doesn’t judge men and women by externals but by their hearts.

The world measures greatness by many standards. At the top are intelligence, wealth, prestige, and position — things which God has determined to put at the bottom. God reveals the greatness of his power by demonstrating that it is the nobodies who are His somebody’s. The reason is this:

READ (I Corinthians 1:29-31).

Pride is the Problem

Paul wanted the Christians at Corinth to see the uncomfortable position their pride and arrogance had put them in. They had the same pride that the world had. But, if they used the same standards that the world did, they had nothing to be proud about!

There’s nothing about the message of Christ — or the church which wears his name – which would cause us to be puffed up with pride. In the eyes of the world, the gospel message is “foolishness” and the church is “despised”.

But God intended it should be that way so that none of us would ever have a reason to boast before God.


All that we have to offer today is just a cross—an old, rugged cross.  It may not seem like much.  It may appear to be weak and foolish. 

But the cross of Jesus Christ is, central to our message and the blood of Jesus Christ is essential for our salvation. 

You can’t make it on your own.  But Jesus died on a cross to do it for you. 

“Nothing in my hands I bring, simply to the cross I cling.”

If it is possible to fall from grace, how can a Christian have any assurance?

If it is possible to fall from grace, how can a Christian have any assurance?

This lesson is best read with an open Bible.  Go ahead and get it now, I’ll wait.

We teach that a Christian can fall from grace.  Many others teach that it is impossible for  Christian to fall away.  The statement of faith is usually stated, “We believe…in the Eternal Security of the believer; that it is impossible for one born into the family of God ever to be lost.” 

Because we disagree with many of our religious contemporaries, and they wonder how can we have any assurance?  Can we even be sure that we are saved? 

We may even wonder, “Can God forgive the sins I have committed?”; “Am I doing enough to be saved?”; “If I were to die right now would I go to heaven.”  Sometimes our language may not reflect any real assurance of salvation. 

Believing that apostasy is possible, how can we overcome such feelings?  How can we have assurance today?

  1.  Christians Can Indeed Fall from Grace.

Falling from grace is a possible. Christians are warned against falling from grace.

I Corinthians 10:12 “Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall.”   Even Paul said that he could fall, 9:27 “But I discipline my body and keep it under control, let after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified.”

Falling from grace is a real and grave danger.  Hebrews 6:4-6 “For it is impossible, in the case of those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, and have shared in the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the age to come, and then have fallen away, to restore them again to repentance, since they are crucifying once again the Son of God to their own harn and holding him up to contempt.”

The Jewish Christians to whom this book (Hebrews) has been written are thinking about going back to Judaism.  And the writer warns them not to leave Christ (fall away) for they would not make it back into a right relationship with Him.  At least many of them would never repent and come back to Christ.

How many have we known who have left never to come back?  Few if any ever return.  There is danger is leaving Christ and His church.

Falling from grace is a fact. Galatians 5:4 “You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law; you have fallen away from grace.”  

This verse reflects not only a possibility, but a reality.  It has happened to some!  Those that have tried to be justified by the Ten Commandment Law, Paul says have fallen from grace.

Falling from grace leads to destruction. James says “My brothers, if anyone among you wanders from the truth and someone brings him back, let him know that whoever brings back a sinner from his wandering will save his soul from death and will cover a multitude of sins.” James 5:19-20. 

James (Jesus’ younger brother) was writing to Christians.  He said Christians could sin; they could be converted or changed. If that occurred, then one would be saving that sinner who had sinned from death. The sin of leaving Christ and His church is death.  

Christians can sin; they can fall away; they can sin in such a way as to be eternally lost.  Apostasy is a real possibility.  I do not take any pride in this, nor do I wish it to be so.  But it is a Biblically stated fact.

But even though we can fall from grace, we can still have the assurance of salvation.  Here are some reasons why I am saying this.

  1. Christians Can Have Assurance.

First, because we can be sure that we were saved.

The way to salvation in the NT is plain.  We are saved by grace (Eph. 2:8,9) through the blood of Christ (Eph 1:7).  To be saved we must believe that Jesus is the Son of God and our Lord and be willing to confess our faith in Him (Matthew 10:32-33 or Romans 10:9-10).  We must also repent, stop sinning, turn from our sins (Luke 13:3; Acts 17:30).  And then we must be baptized to be saved (Acts 2:38; 22:16; Galations 3:26 and 27). 

Having done that, we can be certain we have been saved.  Baptism, following faith and repentance, results in remission of sins (Acts 2:38)…having sins washed away (Acts 22:16)…being saved (I Peter 3:21)…getting into Christ and putting on Christ (Galatians 3:27). 

When NT writers addressed Christians, they never showed the slightest doubt that the fact that the people to whom they wrote had been saved. 

Read Galatians 3:26, 27.   Read Colossians 1:13, 14.  Also note: (I Peter 1:3, I Peter 1:22, 23 and I John 3:1).

If NT Christians had that kind of assurance that they had been saved, then we should have the same kind of assurance.  If we have obeyed the gospel, we can be sure, without a doubt that we were saved.  WE can say: I have been saved.  I have been born again.  I have become a child of God.  I have become a member of the church and a citizen of God’s kingdom. 

We can remember a certain day in our lives when we were baptized into Christ to have our sins washed away.  Therefore the NT teaching that we are saved when we obey the gospel provides assurance of our salvation.

Second, we can have assurance because we can be sure that we are being saved.

We must admit that, since we believe that a Christian can fall from grace, being absolutely certain that we have been saved sometime in the past does not in itself provide us today with the kind of assurance we need.  After all, we could have been saved sometime in the past, but be lost today.  How can we be sure we are saved right now?  We can have this assurance for two reasons.

Reason #1 

We can have assurance because of what God has done to keep us faithful. 

God does not want us to turn from Him.  Therefore, He provides us with everything we need to stay faithful. He has given His children:

A loving father.     I John 3:1 “See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.”

An advocate to plead our cause. I John 2:1 “I am writing these thing to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.”

A Holy Guest.  Galatians 4:6 “God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!”

Another Holy guest is the Holy Spirit.  He has been given to us as a earnest, or guarantee of our inheritance, (Ephesians 1:13, 14), to strengthen us (Eph. 3:16) and to bear the fruit of the Spirit in our lives. (Gal 5:22, 23)

An encouraging fellowship.  God has added us to the church (Acts 2:47), a fellowship of believers which exists, at least in part, to help its members remain faithful.  During a recent Wednesday night Bible class, one of our members stated that they were upset with their Christian walk, and their ability to live the Christian life.  The members of the class felt for this person.  They tried to give encouraging words to them.  Many sent notes of love and encouragement.  We were given an encouraging fellowship to help us remain faithful.

A helpful message.  The Bible contains “the word of his grace, which is able to build you up and to give you the inheritance  among all those who are sanctified.” Acts 20:32.  

Heavenly servants.  Speaking of the angels in Hebrews 1:14 we read, “Are they not all ministering spirits send out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?”

The privilege of prayer.  Listen to Jesus.  “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.”  Matthew 7:7. 

Precious promises.  God has given us promises to encourage us to remain faithful.

Reason #2

We can have assurance because, when we fall short of God’s requirements (and we all do), God has made provision for our forgiveness.

Our continuing salvation depends, in a sense, on us.  We have to be doing the best we can to do the will of God. But does that mean that we are on our own as Christians?  No.

The Lord provides for us the kind of help we need to be zealous, to be diligent, to be faithful. 

But not only is our assurance based on the provisions God has made to help us stay faithful, it is also based on the fact that God has made provision for our forgiveness when we fall short of doing His will.

 Specifically, we have the promise that Jesus’ blood washed away our sins: “But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.”   (I John 1:7)

We can be sure of our present salvation, not because we are living sinlessly, but because Jesus’ blood is continually cleansing us of our sins!

It is well that we do not have to depend on our sinlessness, on our own obeying God’s law perfectly, on our own righteousness.  If we did, none of us would be saved because none of us live without sin!  We cannot rely on ourselves.  WE must rely on God’s saving grace and Jesus’ blood as we continue to walk in the light.

Reason #3

We can have assurance because we can be sure we will be saved.  Even if we believe that we are saved now, we may be unsure about whether we will be saved eternally.  We may be reluctant to say, “When I die, I will be saved,” or, “I’m going to heaven. No doubt about it!” 

Paul had no doubt of his eternal salvation.  Read 2 Timothy 4:6-8. 

Paul did not say that he alone could have assurance; he said that “all wo have loved his appearing” can have the same assurance of eternal salvation.

But how can we be sure of going to heaven?  Do we have to live sinless lives before we can be assured of eternal life? 

Staying in 2 Timothy, Paul speaks here of a good man, Onesiphorus.  “May the Lord grant mercy to the household of Onesiphorus, for he often refreshed me and was not ashamed of my chains,…may the Lord grant him to find mercy for the Lord on that Day!”   (2 Timothy 1:16, 18)

As good as Onesiphorus was, he would still need mercy on the day of the Lord.  So will we all.  The good news is that, just as mercy was available to Onesiphorus, it will be available to us on that great day! 

After we have done all that we can for Christ, we are still unworthy servants. We still fall short of the mark, but God’s mercy will make up what we lack!


We can sing songs like “Blessed Assurance” and actually have assurance, even though we believe that a Christian can fall from grace.  We can be sure that we were saved in the past, we are being saved on a daily basis, and we will be saved in heaven forever!

Illustration:  When I was a child my father represented to me strength.  Now many of you have met him, and he isn’t the tallest, the strongest man you ever met.  But as far as I was concerned he was a tower of strength.  As I got older I still saw him as a person of strength.  This gives me assurance.  Of course, his love and care included discipline.  But I knew that there was forgiveness for all my mistakes.  In this too, there was assurance.  I know that if I would ever stray, dad would have some words for me.  But I know that those words and disciple do not mean that I am no longer his son. 

If having a good father can do that for a son, how much more will having God as our Father give us assurance? We can believe that our God has our good at heart, that He cares for us, that He is powerful enough to take care of any problem and that in all the changing circumstances of life, He is the unchanging One. 

Yes, God is our Father; we are His family!  That is assurance. 


If you are not a Christian, it is an assurance you can have too, if you will become of Child of God through faith and obedience.

If we must be led by the Spirit to be saved, how can we be guided by the Holy Spirit today?

Romans 8:14 “For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.”

If we must be led by the Spirit to be saved, how can we be guided by the Holy Spirit today? 

Does the Holy Spirit lead us to Salvation by Miraculous Means?

God has in the past led people in this way.  See Hebrews 1:1,2.

In I Corinthians 12 Paul begins speaking about miraculous gifts.  Then in I Corinthians 13, he said that “when the perfect comes” this system of miraculous gifts would pass away (vv. 8-10).  I believe that is exactly what happened!

See also Mark 16:17-20; Hebrews 2:2-4. Signs were used to confirm message.

What we read in the New Testament is this, when the Lord wanted a particular individual to be taught the gospel, He always provided some human messenger to bring the gospel message to him. 

Acts 8, Phillip is sent to the Ethiopian.

Acts 9, Ananias is sent to speak to Saul.

Acts 10, Peter is sent to Cornelius.

If you want to be saved by the leading of the Holy Spirit, do not expect a miraculous visitation by the Spirit.  Instead, do as Cornelius did: look for a messenger who will tell you how to be saved. 

Does the Holy Spirit lead us to salvation by special illumination of the Word?

James 1:5 “If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given to him.”  Wisdom is the ability to make correct decisions. 

When we read the Bible, we are not reading something that was to be impossible to understand.

Ephesians 3:4 “When you read this, you can perceive my insight into the mystery of Christ.”

Paul expected the Ephesians to understand what he had written.  He did not expect them to need miraculous help, or diving illumination, to understand.  Indeed, when we read the Bible, though we will discover that there are some difficult passages, most of the Bible is fairly easy to understand. 

We Received the Bible though the Holy Spirit

See 2 Timothy 3:16-17, 2 Peter 1:20, 21.

The problem today is not that the message is so hard, the real problem is that men today choose to reject the simple teachings of God. 

When people claim to be seeking a special illumination, they are not always seeking to know God’s will.  Sometimes they want to have a “feeling” that justifies what they wanted to do in the first place. 

Does the Holy Spirit lead us today by the Word of God?

John 16:8, 9 “And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me;”  In order to be saved we need to be convicted of sin, righteousness, and judgment!  But how did the Holy Spirit convict people in NT times? 

Conviction came through the preaching of the Holy Spirit-Inspired Word. No wonder Paul said the “the sword of the Spirit…is the word of God. (Ephesians 6:17). The Spirit uses His sword, the Word of God, to cut, convict, and convince, as He leads people to salvation. 

The Bible says we are, or must be, born of the water and the Spirit to be saved. Therefore, we are born of the Spirit (Jn. 3: 5, 9).  But the Bible also teaches that we are born again through the Word. 

I Peter 1:23 We have “been born again, not of perishable seed but of imperishable, through the living and abiding word of God;”

Further, the Bible says that we are sanctified in the Spirit: I Corinthians 6:11 “…you were washed …you were sanctified…you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, and in the Spirit of our God.”  We are sanctified through the Word.

Jesus said, “Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.” (John 17:17)

The Bible teaches that we are saved by the Spirit: “not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Hoy Spirit,” (Titus 3:5)  (For more on this see also James 2:21)

Where does the Holy Spirit lead us?

He leads us to put our faith in Jesus Christ.

He leads us to be convicted of our sins.

He leads us to stop sinning and turn to God. (Repent).

He leads us to confess Christ as Lord.

He leads us to submit to Baptism where the blood of Christ cleanses us of all of  our sins.

He leads us to be a part of Jesus’ church.

He leads us to be faithful unto death.


Will you be led by the Spirit? If He were speaking to us today, He would tell us to do no more or no less than what He has already given us in scripture.  What He has written matters.  His message has been relayed to you. 

Will you hear it? Will you obey this message from God?

If God is Gracious, Could Good, Honest and Sincere People Possibly be Lost?


If God is Gracious, Could Good, Honest, Sincere People Possibly be Lost?

What Does the Bible Teach?

  1.  Atheist: “can you be saved without faith in God?

2 Thessalonians 1:5-9.  Those who do not know God will be lost.  They will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction.

Hebrews 11:6 “Without faith it is impossible to please God.” 

A good and honest and sincere atheist can be lost, and is lost.

  1.  How about people who believe in God but who never put their faith in Jesus, the Son of God?

John 8:24 “I told you that you would die in your sins, for unless you believe that I am he you will die in your sins.”

John 14:6 “I am the way, and the truth, and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.” 

A good and honest and sincere person who does not believe in Jesus and does not put their faith in Him will not be saved. 

We have now eliminated about 67% of the world.  It is estimated that only 33% of the world believes in Jesus.

  1. What about those who have faith in Jesus, but have never followed His commands, or who are religiously wrong. 

We are not talking about followers of Christ who make mistakes and who are weak.  We are talking about those who claim to be Christians but have failed to be scripturally baptized.  They have never repented of their sin.  They have not confessed Jesus as Lord. Will they be saved?  Can we be saved without obeying the gospel? 

Read 2 Thessalonians 1:5-9 and Matthew 7:21-23

The gospel is the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ. I Cor. 15.

What about some examples from the book of Acts.  Could we just be good, honest and sincere in what we believe or what we want to believe and still be pleasing to God?

Read Acts 10:1-4.  Cornelius was a good man.  But he needed to hear words whereby he would be saved.

Read Acts 8:26-40.  The Ethiopian was a religious man. 

Read Acts 9:1-19.  Saul, a righteous Jewish man who was on his way to become the high priest also needed to obey Christ. 

How is this Possible?

Who will be saved? Where is the dividing line? Which of these groups will be saved?  All or part?


Unbaptized Christians?

Baptized (for any reason) Christians?

Baptized for forgiveness of sins Christians?

When using the Bible as a dividing tool, where does it divide?  Wherever we put the line, there will those on the wrong side of the line who are good, honest and sincere or who, we think ought to be excuses for not being so.

We Still have a Problem…

The answer to our question lies in these great facts that are taught in the Bible.

 All have sinned.  Romans 3:23

The wages of sin is death, the gift of God is eternal life. Romans 6:23

Man cannot save himself.  In sin, we are hopeless, condemned to die.  We are also helpless; we cannot lift ourselves up from our sin.  Thus, nothing we are, and nothing we do, is sufficient of itself to remove our sins.

Just being good, honest, and sincere will never make amends for our sin.     The Bible does not say that all we have to be is good, honest and sincere.  So how could these people be lost? 

Our God wants all to be saved.  But all have sinned; rebelled against God.  We offer to God our goodness, our sincerity, but it is not enough to save us. 

It all Depends on the Blood of Christ

What does blood do?

It purifies the conscience.  Hebrews 9:14 “how much more will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without blemish to God, purify our conscience from dead works to serve the living God.”

Matthew 26:28 “for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.”

Revelation 1:5  He “freed us from our sins by his blood.”

Certainly the blood of Jesus saves us.  It blots out the sin that condemns, kills, and separates us from God.  But how does this occur?  What must we do to have forgiveness by the blood? 

We Contact The Blood in Baptism

I Peter 3:20, 21 “in the days of Noah…eight persons, were brought safely through water.  Baptism, which corresponds to this, now saves you, not the removal of dirt from the body but as an appeal to God for a good conscience, through the resurrection of Jesus Christ. 

Acts 2:38. Peter tells the crowd, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins”

In Acts 22:16, Saul had been praying for 3 days (Acts 9:11).  Ananias comes and speaks to him about Jesus and then says… “Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name.” 

Romans 6:3,4 “all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death?  We were buried therefore with him in baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.”  

To be saved by the blood, you must be baptized into Christ for the forgiveness of sins.

First, we have to hear about Jesus.  Hear His word.  Romans 10:17, “So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ.” 

Second, we have to believe that Jesus is the Son of God.  John 8:24 “Unless you believe that I am He, you shall die in your sins.”

Third, we must repent of our sins.  Luke 13:3 “…unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”

Fourth, we have to be willing to confess our faith in Jesus.  Romans 10:10 “For with the heart man believes, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation.”

Finally, we are scripturally baptized for the remission of our sins. “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins,” (Acts 2:38)


Are you really good, honest and sincere? 

Are you really good if you have not completely obeyed the commands of the Lord?

Are we really honest if we do not follow through with the truth of Jesus?

Are we really sincere if we decide to pay no attention to the Bible and never hear or heed its truth?

Where Faith Becomes Family