January 10, 2010
TO OUR VISITORS
The family of God here at Dowagiac Church of Christ wishes to extend to you a warm welcome. If you have questions about our worship services and why we do what we do, we will be glad to give you a biblical answer. The uniqueness of the church of Christ is that we are trying to restore to the best of our ability those things that we see the first century church doing. We are also working hard at building the spirit, unity, and love that Jesus taught and prayed for. We have no clergy, but are working together as equal co-workers trying to serve one another and the area in which we live. Come study with us, grow with us, and serve with us as we strive to do God’s will in all things.
CHILDREN'S WORSHIP BEGINS TODAY! There will be a change in our worship today, which will be continued every Sunday from now on. We will not have our pre-worship children's group, but will start with singing, prayer, and communion. After the communion our children will be dismissed to the fellowship area for a lesson at their level while the adults listen to the sermon for today. Parents need to decide whether they want their children to stay with them or go to the children's worship, but we would encourage all younger cliildren who cannot understand the adult lesson to go and have a lesson which will be at their level. Our goal is to have 100 percent of what we do here understandable by 100 percent of us.
PEOPLE NEWS. Janice Love had two transfusions this past week. Keep Jan in
your prayers. Larry Fox went to Nebraska this past week where his son had suffered a heart attack while on the road where he works as a truck driver. A angiogram and stint were involved and he is recovering. Larry is back. Jeannene Burns sent a card to the church here. You may remember that she was with us for a while having just gotten out of the Navy, and was going to school. She decided to go back into the military and became a marine. She wished us the best and wanted everyone to know she is thinking of us and missing us. Her e-mail is firstname.lastname@example.org.
WHO WILL KNOW
JOB 17:9 "The righteous will hold to their ways, and those with clean hands will grow stronger.
INTRODUCTION--We are confronted with temptation every day, public, and private.
Society makes sin less visible--gray sin.ANSWER 1--I WILL KNOW.
What is accepted--politics, entertainment?Rationalization is a survival skill.
What is your price?
"Who will know" is a survival skill.
Acts 23:1ANSWER 2--GOD WILL KNOW.
Romans 5:1--You will never find peace with God with sin.
Psalm 51:1-17--David when Nathan came to him.
David--Psalm 69:5ANSWER 3--ULTIMATELY MY FAMILY AND FRIENDS
Not "big brother" but almighty God!
1 Peter 2:11-12ANSWER 4--WHEN CHRIST COMES EVERYONE WILL KNOW.
Examples where an evil report is discarded--
Incident with Phyllis and my traveling.1 Timothy 3:4--Qualification of an elder.
You can fool some of the people all the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time.
1 Corinthians 4:5
One thing that will happen in judgement is that nothing will be hidden!Acts 2:37-38--What does it mean to be "cut to the heart?"
What will you do with this message?
Verse 40--"With many other words ... he pleaded with them."
EDUCATION AND THE CHURCH
We live in a biblically illiterate culture. What that means is that our population does not generally know anything about the Bible or what is in it. Most people know only what someone has told them about the Bible. There is a very attractive brochure being mailed to every house in Berrien and Cass county about a Prophecy Seminar which is being held with several speakers over a period of 10 days. The four-color brochure tells of biblical prophecies about the end of the world, the coming of Jesus, and the establishment of His Kingdom on earth. This is a popular doctrine called dispensationalism. It includes somethmg called "the rapture" which is the first of a series of resurrections in which Christians will be suddenly caught up off the earth while Jesus returns to restore the nation of Israel. It is claimed that after a seven-year tribulation involving military conflict, Israel will become the world ruler with Jesus as the head and Jewish worship restored in the city of Jerusalem which will be the capital of the world. This all started according to this view"when Israel was restored as a nation in 1948, and will end within a generation meaning within a few years.
Obiously this very quick and condensed explanation is inadequate, but because people do not know the Bible, such flashy advertising and wild political claims are appealing to many people. The whole "Left Behind" series of books and movies is a part of this theological scenario and well known names are associated with it--John Hagee, Pat Robertson, Tim LaHaye, Hal Lindsey, John Walvoord, etc. It is impossible, of course. to totally explore this destructive man-made theology in a few lines, but here are a few points:
(1) God's promises are always conditional. In passages like Deuteronomy 8:19-20; 30:15-20; and Joshua 23:15-16 the Jews are told if they did not obey God they would not inherit the promised land. In Joshua 23:14 the Jews are told all of the promises that God has made to Abraham had been fulfilled. (2) The New Testament established equality among all nations, so being Jewish was no longer a special position with God (see Galatians 3:26-29; John 18:36; Ephesians 2:11-22; and Acts 10:34-36). (3) Jesus makes it clear he is not interested in politics or in establishing a physical worldly kingdom. The Kingdom is the Church, not a political entity. See John 18:36; Matthew 22:21. We are interested in the Kingdom, but not in politics or world domination.