“Avenge not yourselves, beloved, but give place unto the wrath of God: for it is written, Vengeance belongeth unto me; I will recompense, saith the Lord” (Romans 12:19). We live in a time when vengeance is seen by verbal, law suits, fist fights, and even murder. The Christian mustn’t be fashioned after the world (Romans 12:2), he must realize that vengeance belongs to God. Paul continues to write: “Render to no man evil for evil. Take thought for things honorable in the sight of all men. If it be possible, as much as in you lieth, be at peace with all men. Avenge not yourselves, beloved, but give place unto the wrath of God: for it is written, Vengeance belongeth unto me; I will recompense, saith the Lord. But if thine enemy hunger, feed him; if he thirst, give him to drink: for in so doing thou shalt heap coals of fire upon his head. Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good” (Romans 12:17-2).
Jesus clearly teaches how the disciple is to respond toward those who are mean spirited. He doesn’t expect us to ‘cuss’em’, ‘deck’em’, or ‘sue’em’. Listen carefully… “Ye have heard that it was said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: but I say unto you, resist not him that is evil: but whosoever smiteth thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also. And if any man would go to law with thee, and take away thy coat, let him have thy cloak also” (Matthew 5:38-40). The wicked will receive their just punishment when Jesus returns (2 Thessalonians 1:7-9).
Revenge and retaliation are products of the fleshly works: “enmities, strife, jealousies, wraths, factions, divisions, parties, envyings” (Galatians 5:20-21). Be warned, such conduct will not inherit the kingdom of God.
This past week Diana and I were blessed with another addition to our family. Our fifth grandchild, a precious little boy, was born into this world. Throughout the past 30 years I have witnessed the birth of each one of my seven sons, as well as being able to be a part of some of my grandchildren’s early years. Each time I hold these tiny children in my arms I am moved to tears, deep thoughts and prayers concerning their new life. I think about God’s wondrous grace, His tremendous power and marvelous design of life. On several occasions I have even written about these stirring moments. They are not necessarily new thoughts, but thoughts I am reminded of and provoked by these little people. They teach me valuable lessons of God. I last wrote of these things about three years ago. Today I reflect again.
I briefly held Josiah around 3 AM. He was roughly two and a half hours old. I was sleepy, and he was asleep, but I took the time to notice all the little details that were possible to take in and remember. I did this with each one of my sons. I stared at each little feature, and considered the family resemblance; He reminded me of his daddy. I was thankful to God for this new little addition to our family.
I looked at his little mouth, chubby cheeks and cleft chin. I noticed His sweet little nose and thick dark black hair – Where did that come from? Such delicacy and detail. He was perfect. “Fearfully and wonderfully made” (Psalm 139:13-14).
He is a precious soul made in the remarkable image of God (Genesis 1:26-27). This adorable child is priceless – a precious gift given by our Great Creator.
I think about the words of the Psalmist: “Lo, children are a heritage of Jehovah; And the fruit of the womb is his reward. As arrows in the hand of a mighty man, So are the children of youth. Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them…” (Psalm 127:3-5). I held in my arms one of the greatest physical gifts God has ever given man. It made me think about the tremendous challenge laid before my son and precious daughter-in-law. They have a great work to train and spiritually prepare their little boy, and then shoot that little arrow forth into a vast world of sin and darkness. I am very confident that with the Lord’s help they will be successful in teaching him to love and respect God.
His sweet innocence and complete trust placed in my feeble arms to hold him up made me think of Jesus’ words: “Suffer the little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for to such belongeth the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 19:13-14). “Except ye turn, and become as little children, ye shall in no wise enter into the kingdom of heaven. Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven” (Matthew 18:3-4). Is this how the heavenly Fathers looks at me? Is it possible (even as a sinner), that I am as strongly loved and as precious in God’s sight as Josiah is in mine? I believe so. I must strive to be more childlike.
As I look upon the face of my new grandson, I am reminded that although I may not be his father, I am his father’s father and I am responsible to keep God’s Word ever before him. As Moses said, “… Only take heed to thyself, and keep thy soul diligently, lest thou forget the things which thine eyes saw, and lest they depart from thy heart all the days of thy life; but make them known unto thy children and thy children’s children” (Deuteronomy 4:9). Therefore, I will strive to help his parents any way I can and do my best to be an example before him at all times.
“Children’s children are the crown of old men; And the glory of children are their fathers” (Proverbs 17:6). I love you Josiah – welcome to our family!
Four hundred ninety-eight years ago a German Roman Catholic priest defiantly nailed a document (“Disputation on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences”) on the massive doors of All Saints’ Church in Wittenberg, Germany. The document contained 95 questions and theses of debate. The priest, Martin Luther, vigorously condemned the Catholic Church’s practice of selling “indulgences” to absolve sin. These 95 different theses basically set forth two central ideas: 1) The Bible is authoritative and 2) Man is saved by faith and not works. This was the starting point of the Protestant Reformation.
Luther seems to pursue an honest and open discussion; he desired the Catholic body to repent. Although provocative, the document appears to be written by a humble spirit – questioning rather than accusing. Consider a few of the theses:
- When our Lord and Master Jesus Christ said, “Repent” (Mt 4:17), he willed the entire life of believers to be one of repentance.
- This word cannot be understood as referring to the sacrament of penance, that is, confession and satisfaction, as administered by the clergy.
- The man who actually buys indulgences is as rare as he who is really penitent; indeed, he is exceedingly rare.
- Those who believe that they can be certain of their salvation because they have indulgence letters will be eternally damned, together with their teachers.
- For the graces of indulgences are concerned only with the penalties of sacramental satisfaction established by man.
- They who teach that contrition is not necessary on the part of those who intend to buy souls out of purgatory or to buy confessional privileges preach unchristian doctrine.
- Any truly repentant Christian has a right to full remission of penalty and guilt, even without indulgence letters.
- It is vain to trust in salvation by indulgence letters, even though the indulgence commissary, or even the pope, were to offer his soul as security.
- Injury is done to the Word of God when, in the same sermon, an equal or larger amount of time is devoted to indulgences than to the Word.
- Christians should be exhorted to be diligent in following Christ, their Head, through penalties, death and hell.
Although, condemning of the Pope’s behavior, Luther still believed in the hierarchy of the Catholic “papal” apostasy, as well as many other scriptural perversions and man-made additions.
Historically, the Catholic Church slowly emerged as the New Testament church drifted further and further into apostasy. Paul wrote of this coming digression in 1 Timothy 4:1-3 and 2 Thessalonians 2:1-4. It seems to have come to a head around in the 7th century when Boniface III was proclaimed to be the first “universal father” or “pope” in 606 A.D. Since the Pope is an essential feature of the Catholic Church, it must be noticed that there is no mention of a “pope” in the New Testament. Certainly the apostle Peter, was never called by such a name; Nor was he ever referred to as ‘Father’ (c.f. Matthew 23:9) or ‘papa’.
In the first century, each church was under a plurality of elders/bishops (Acts 14:23 Phil 1:1 Titus 1:5). We always see one church under many elders, not many churches under one bishop/elder. We must be honest with the Bible and ourselves. We must return to the Bible
In 1518 Martin Luther got his debate. For three days he refuted Cardinal Thomas Cajetan in Augsburg, Germany resulting in absolutely no changes. On November 9, 1518, the pope condemned his writings. Refusing to recant his 95 theses, Martin was excommunicated from the Catholic Church by Pope Leo on January 3, 1521.
Martin Luther was looking in the right direction, but failed to move further ahead. Luther sought to reform or alter the Catholic Church. In so doing he began adding to the thousands of denominations that exist today; each a little different from one another, but all the offspring of the apostate Church. Sadly, Luther wrote: “I pray you leave my name alone and not call yourselves Lutherans but Christians.” They did not heed his admonition. “In none other is there salvation: for neither is there any other name under heaven, that is given among men, wherein we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12) We must seek to restore the New Testament order. We must desire to follow the Biblical pattern of Christ’s church. For Christ’s church is the glorious body of the redeemed, divinely designed and established. “Unto him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus unto all generations for ever and ever. Amen.” (Ephesians 3:21)
A faithful and godly family does not just happen. Yet, a family does not go through a daily ‘ritual’ or ‘ceremony’ to become more spiritual. Godliness and spirituality comes through careful planning and determined cultivation. It becomes a way of life.
A spiritual family begins with godly parents who, before the birth of their first born, are determined to “nurture them in the chastening and admonition of the Lord.” (Eph. 6:4) This couple begins their marriage with the primary thought that God will always abide in their home. They acknowledge the Truth: “Except Jehovah build the house, they labor in vain that build it.” (Psalm 127:1) If you want a spiritual family, you must first allow God to be a part of your family by allowing Him to lead and direct. We must relinquish our will to His.
A spiritual family spends time together. Godly families eat, play, study, and worship together. The wise and experienced Solomon warns the parent, “A child left himself causeth shame to his mother.” (Proverbs 29:15) Children desperately need the parent’s time and attention. Through inspiration he also pointed out the benefits of family companionship in Ecclesiastes four. “There is one that is alone, and he hath not a second; yea, he hath neither son nor brother; yet is there no end of all his labor, neither are his eyes satisfied with riches. For whom then, saith he, do I labor, and deprive my soul of good? This also is vanity, yea, it is a sore travail. Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow; but woe to him that is alone when he falleth, and hath not another to lift him up. Again, if two lie together, then they have warmth; but how can one be warm alone? And if a man prevail against him that is alone, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” (Eccl. 4:8-12) Godly families will enjoy and appreciate one another’s company.
A spiritual family eats together. This time is used for conversation concerning events of the day, and it will most likely involve Bible discussions. We find out what our children did during the day, and what mother and father did during their day. Plans for future events might be discussed. Family talk should be cherished by all – your children will remember these days. This is obviously a time to pray together and be thankful to God for the families’ dependence upon God and prosperity (John 6:11). This time can be used to read the Scriptures if a family so determines it to be prudent. Remember the words of Moses as he instructed the family heads of Israel, “Love Jehovah thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be upon thy heart; and thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thy house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thy hand, and they shall be for frontlets between thine eyes. And thou shalt write them upon the door-posts of thy house, and upon thy gates.” (Deut. 6:4-9)
A spiritual family plays together. This is manifested in a simple ‘game night’ or maybe a trip to the zoo. God reminds us life is to be enjoyed. “Live joyfully with the wife whom thou lovest all the days of thy life…” (Eccl. 9:9) “Rejoice, O young man, in thy youth, and let thy heart cheer thee in the days of thy youth, and walk in the ways of thy heart, and in the sight of thine eyes; but know that for all these things God will bring thee into judgment. Therefore remove sorrow from thy heart, and put away evil from thy flesh; for youth and the dawn of life are vanity.” (Eccl. 11:9-10) A godly family will benefit from laughing and have fun with one another. The wise king said, “A glad heart maketh a cheerful countenance…” (Prov. 15:13) Of course, all the ‘fun’ must be considered in light of God’s Word. Is it right? Would it cause me or others to sin? How will it affect our influence? Etc.
A spiritual family works together. The family that cooks a meal together, cleans the house together, or does yard work together derive great benefits. The responsibility of chores, the accomplishment of a job well done and the loving instructions from a parent can go a long, long way to making our families what they ought to be spiritually (Eccl. 9:10 1Thess 4:11 2Thess 3:10-12 Eph. 4:28). The Lord teaches us, “Even a child maketh himself known by his doings, Whether his work be pure, and whether it be right.” (Proverbs 20:11) This work might involve helping others, therefore teaching a valuable lesson of selflessness. “Not looking each of you to his own things, but each of you also to the things of others.” (Phil. 2:4)
A spiritual family worships together. Whether at home or at the church building the family is together. They attend services together thus provoking “love and good works.” (Heb. 10:24-25) (1) Worship services and Bible studies take priority over all things: work, school, sports, vacations, etc. (2) We must also take the time to prepare for study and worship. This means we will equip our children with their Bible and lesson and book. We will prepare them for their Bible classes by reading and helping the prepare lessons or memorize texts. (3) This obviously requires parental awareness and involvement. Attend area Gospel Meetings together as a family. Not only do you learn God’s Word, but conversation is provoked, new friendships can be established in other congregations, and brethren are encouraged by your family’s visit. Study the Bible together at home. We cannot expect two 30 – minute classes at the church building to fully equip our children for life. It is the parent’s responsibility to teach their children God’s Word. We must take the time to read together, study together and pray together.
Pray diligently for your family. Pray that it be faithful, godly and spiritual. Then, execute God’s plan for the family in your life and it will come to pass. “For I have known him, to the end that he may command his children and his household after him, that they may keep the way of Jehovah, to do righteousness and justice…” (Genesis 18:19)
Daniel S. Dow
We are an “ON-THE-RUN” people. We eat on the run, read on the run, study on the run, shave and apply make-up on the run, talk on the run and even cook on the run. The trouble is, too often we “RUN” past the important things that really deserve our time and attention.
Many people are so busy running around they have no time for God. Too busy to give attention to reading and studying the Bible. Too rushed. Too tired. Too busy to think about eternal preparation of the soul. We pass by , opportunities and invitations to obey the Lord. One day, those opportunities will be no more. Day by day we seek only those things that appeal to the flesh, thinking nothing about the value of our soul. We have a command to teach the gospel to those of this world (Matthew 28:19 Mark 16:15), but too often we excuse ourselves from that great work because we are just too busy with other things. Jesus reminds us of what is most important; “Seek ye first the kingdom, and His righteousness” (Matthew 6:33)
Many parents run past their children on the way to work, on the way to social gatherings and community affairs. They have no time to play catch, hear their problems, help with their projects – no time to bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4 Deuteronomy 6:6-9). Constantly on the run, we have no time to pray with our children. No time to help them learn the Bible or talk about spiritual subjects. We certainly give them spending money, automobiles, televisions, stereos and clothes – we just don’t have any time to spare.
On the run! Too busy! No time! Is this really the problem? No. These are merely scapegoats to excuse ourselves. We determine the priorities in our lives. Most of us can do what we want to do, and we take the time for the things what we want to do. Amazingly, we can find time to hunt, play ball, and attend social events, but suddenly we are helpless to find time for God or our families. We need to stop deceiving ourselves. Time is a resource to be invested as we choose. “Look carefully how ye walk, not as unwise, but as wise; redeeming the time, because the days are evil” (Ephesians 5:15-16). Time is to be our slave, not our master! We must use our time in view of eternity. Slow down! As they say, “Take time to smell the roses” and prepare for heaven.
“Come now, ye that say, To-day or to-morrow we will go into this city, and spend a year there, and trade, and get gain: whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. What is your life? For ye are a vapor, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away. For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall both live, and do this or that.” James 4:13-17
Do you have a sincere and honest heart? Such a heart is necessary if you expect to be pleasing to God. The sincere and honest heart diligently searches the Scriptures for God’s Way, and once finding it, abandons all the vain paths which are not of God. Concerning the honest and good heart, Jesus said, “having heard the word (they) hold it fast” (Luke 8:15). “Holding it fast” emphasizes the importance of pattern and authority. Today, many people hear the word, but are not honest and sincere in their “holding to it”. Of those, Jesus said, They “honoreth me with their lips; But their heart is far from me” (Matthew 15:8) And what of their eternal reward? “Then will (Jesus) profess unto them, I never knew you; depart from me, ye that work iniquity” (Matthew 7:21-23)
We must be sincere with the Scriptures. When they specify certain commands we need to learn not to tamper with or add to them. When God is silent on a matter, we need to respect His silence and not “barge in” establishing new and improved commandments. Let us also realize this; If God said it, I must do it. Many of the commands of God go unheeded simply because man doesn’t want to do them. The Roman Christians “became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching…” (Romans 6:17). That form of teaching is spoken of in verses 1-9. It refers to the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus, and the likeness of our salvation through death to sin, burial in water, and a new spiritual life. The majority of people (Matthew 7:13) do not have the integrity to submit their hearts to God Almighty. They continue to follow the paths of men. “Ye are they that justify yourselves in the sight of men; but GOD KNOWETH YOUR HEARTS: for that which is exalted among men is an abomination in the sight of God.” (Luke 16:15)
Do you have a sincere and honest heart?
Years ago, while browsing around a religious book store, I picked up a little blue paperback book entitled, “The Truth About The Church of Christ”. Needless to say, my interest was piqued. I wanted to know the truth, so I bought it! As I began to read, I immediately noticed a common sentiment that permeated throughout the book. Statements like: “They are completely warped doctrinally….” , “…warped and utterly confused on the Bible” and “They are glaringly ignorant…” OUCH!!
The author referred to the church of Christ as a “modern cult”. Although he never defined “cult”, I knew it wasn’t good. I don’t know about you, but when I hear the word “cult” I think of groups like the Branch Davidians, who blindly followed their leader, David Koresh, to their fiery deaths (1993). Or I think of Jim Jones and the People’s Temple which ended in a mass poisoning of adults and children followers (1978). The robes, flowers and shaved heads of Sun Myung Moon’s ‘Moonies’ (or The Unification Church) come to mind (1974). In 1997 there was the “Heaven’s Gate” mass suicide led by Marshall Applewhite in San Diego, California.
A secular group named, The Watchman Fellowship, Inc. has compiled an index of cults. They define Cult “by its primary dictionary definition, the term cult just means a system of religious beliefs or rituals. It is based on a farming term in the Latin meaning cultivation. In modern usage, the term cult is often used by the general public to describe any religious group they view as strange or dangerous. Thus, cult can describe religious leaders or organizations that employ abusive, manipulative or illegal control over their followers’ lives. In addition to these usages, Christians generally have a doctrinal component to their use of the word. Cult in this sense, is a counterfeit or serious deviation from the doctrines of classical Christianity.”
Christ’s church is included on their list. I assume it is included because of the final definition “serious deviation from the doctrines of classical Christianity”. Christ’s body does not resemble the Catholic church, nor any other popular denomination. Are we strange? Some may think so. The Bible teaches us to be a peculiar and holy people (1 Peter 2:9). We are sanctified or set apart from this world (2 Corinthians 6:17). We are different. Are we dangerous? Not in any physical way. We are not abusive, manipulative or criminal, but spiritually we pose a great threat to those who follow the traditions of their fathers and man-made creeds (Matthew 10:34-38; 15:8-9 1 Corinthians 1:18-21 Galatians 1:6-10 1 Peter 4:3-4). We shine God’s light upon those who are in darkness (John 3:19-20). Such false teachers and infidels do not like the illumination. So, men may insult us. They might call us names and try to demean the body of Jesus Christ (Matthew 5:11 Acts 24:14 1 Peter 4:12-16), but we will continue to stand firm on our plea to return to the New Testament and restore Christ’s pattern (1 Timothy 3:14).
I would hope no one believes the church which belongs to Christ Jesus is a cult; but if you do, why not be a friend and study God’s Word with us. There is nothing to fear, for Truth will always prevail! (John 8:31-32)
Have you ever changed your life when you saw it needed changing? Suppose you had a bad habit that was ruining your health, wouldn’t you reverse you eating, smoking or drinking habits to save your life? This change is called “conversion”. It is a changing of your thinking and living.
While a conversion of our lives is good, in order to save our physical life, the most important change you can make concerns your spiritual life. Jesus taught a group of people who needed to convert spiritually in Matthew 13:15. These people had closed their eyes, ears and hearts to the Word of God. They were set in their religious traditions and refused to change or be converted. They were comfortable. The results? They lost their soul.
Dear friend, what about you? Are you comfortable in the knowledge you have of God’s truth? When you hear truth taught from God’s word that you have not previously known or practiced, are you willing to change? If not, you are numbered among those whom Jesus spoke. Never quit studying, learning and changing when you see you are wrong. Be converted to the truth by diligent study.
“For this people’s heart is waxed gross, And their ears are dull of hearing, And their eyes they have closed; Lest haply they should perceive with their eyes, And hear with their ears, And understand with their heart, And should turn again, And I should heal them.” (Matthew 13:15)
“Speak Thou The Things Which Befit The Sound Doctrine”
Paul exhorted Titus, a young gospel preacher, to preach about the Christian lifestyle. These helpful words of righteous living and preparation “befit” (suit and become) the doctrine of Jesus Christ (2:1). Titus was told to address the spiritual life of four segments of the Christian family: Aged Men, Aged Women, Young Women and Young Men. Please note the character of each and apply them accordingly.
AGED MEN (2:2): With the passing of years comes experience and wisdom, but maturity and knowledge also bring greater responsibility. Paul told Timothy that brethren are to “rebuke not an elder, but exhort him as a father” (1Tim. 5:1) The elder Christian man is due our respect and honor for the many years of faithful service he has rendered in the kingdom of God. His wisdom and experience is valuable, and should be used by the younger generations. The church needs spiritual guidance from such faithful men. It is discouraging to hear older Christians (whether male or female) say, “We’re stepping down and allowing the younger generation to take over!” How sad to think that such experience, wisdom and knowledge would be wasted. The true Christian never steps down. The elder Christian is desperately needed and must be involved in the Lord’s work. Older Christian, do not fail your children and grandchildren. Paul says we should be able to expect these characteristics from your life:
Temperate: self-control, moderate as to opinion or passion, discreet. 1Cor.9:25 1Tim.3:2
Grave: venerable, honorable, honest.
Sober-minded: circumspect, alert, watchful and careful Rom. 12:3
Sound: actually a medical relating to one’s health and wellness. Spiritually applied to be uncorrupted, true and wholesome.
In Faith: (1) Truth itself (2) Reliance and trust in Christ; unwavering 2Tim. 1:13
In Love: devotion, affection and benevolence, toward God and man. Matt. 22:37-40
Patience: endurance and constancy. With others and self. James 1:4
AGED WOMEN (2:3): Like the older man, the older woman must use her years of experience and service in God’s kingdom. She must lead and direct in the way that our God commands. Paul wrote, “Exhort… the elder women as mothers” (1Tim. 5:2). Jesus said, “There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or mother, or father, or children, or lands, for my sake, and for the gospel’s sake, but he shall receive a hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands, with persecutions; and in the world to come eternal life.” (Mark 10:29-30) Upon becoming a child of God we adopt a large spiritual family consisting of many father and mother figures who teach the younger generations how they might serve God. Please note the responsibility of the older woman:
Reverent in Demeanor: holy behavior, conditioned or positioned toward holiness, reverential. 1Tim. 2:9-10 1Peter 3:3-4
Not Slanderous: she is not to be involved in defamation, no false accuser. Idleness often results in gossip and slander; causing one to become a minister of the devil. 1Tim. 5:13 Prov. 10:18
Not Enslaved To Much Wine: self-controlled, not a servant of sin, but a servant of Christ 2Tim. 3:3 2Peter 1:6
Teachers of That Which Is Good: teachers of the right. This denotes her continued activity in the kingdom, not idleness. 1Tim. 1:5
Train The Younger Women: The obligation of instructing younger women. Paul includes information which should be taught: “Love their husbands, to love their children, to be sober-minded, chaste, workers at home, kind, being in subjection to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed.” (vs 4-5) It is regrettable that many older women fail in this important responsibility. Many of these women have never been trained themselves, finding themselves in later years ill prepared to pass on valuable knowledge. The very things they attempt to instill in the hearts of these young women must first be in the hearts and displayed in their own lives.
“Speak Thou The Things Which Befit The Sound Doctrine”
This is the conclusion to last week’s article. The attributes listed in Titus chapter two are to be employed in our daily lives. With these characteristics manifested in our lives we obviously glorify our God and Creator and His Holy Word! “Even so let your light shine before men; that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven” (Matt. 5:16) Last week we examined the older man and woman; this week we examine the younger woman and man. Again, please note the character of each and apply the necessary qualities in your life!
YOUNG WOMEN (2:4-5): The need for Biblical training is essential, the future of the church depends on how these young Christians conduct themselves. This segment of the church are the mothers of the next generation: fathers, mothers, preachers, elders, deacons, teachers. True is the saying of old, “The hand that rocks the cradle, controls the world.” Timothy was instructed to exhort “the younger as sisters, in all purity” (1Tim. 5:2) These precious and beloved sisters in Christ are the future teachers of the next generation of young women. It is extremely important that they be trained well, so when their time comes to carry the load of their age, they will be prepared to carry on. Young women please heed the following instructions:
Love Their Husbands: devotion and companionship. Fulfill the needs of your husband; not just an emotional or fleshly love, but a commanded and learned love. Such instructions head off the heartaches of the sin of adultery. Give your husband no reason to look elsewhere. If your mate is a Christian, encourage him and help him fulfill his work and responsibility. If he has never obeyed the gospel of Jesus, live in such a way that glorifies God. Express your love by helping him find Christ. 1Peter 3:1 Gen. 2:20-24
Love Their Children: devotion, nurture and train/discipline. Fulfill the basic needs of your children. This too is a commanded and learned love. Proverbs 13:24; 29:15 Nothing is more pitiful than a mother who will not care for her children. Mothers must teach their children about God. Teach them to pray, to read and study God’s Bible. To neglect your child’s spiritual development is spiritual child abuse.
Sober-minded: circumspect, alert, watchful and careful.
Discreet: sober, temperate, self-controlled. Rom. 12:3 1Cor. 6:9
Chaste: clean, innocent, modest, pure, perfect/whole
Workers At Home: keeper of the home, domestically inclined, guard the home, “A stayer at home” “Good house keeper” (Strongs) This is her domain and rule. 1Tim. 5:14
Kind: good natured 1Cor. 13:4 Eph. 4:32
Subject To Their Own Husband: to subordinate, to submit self unto, subdue unto, obedient. 1Peter 3:1 Eph. 5:22 Col. 3:18
YOUNGER MEN (2:6-8): Here again is tomorrow’s church. Tomorrow’s fathers, spiritual leaders, deacons, preachers, teachers. Every young man should desire to develop and grow for the purpose of strengthening the body of Christ, and widening the borders of God’s kingdom. 1Tim. 3:1 Youth is the time to begin instilling zeal and fervor into the heart of our young men’s heart. “Remember also thy Creator in the days of thy youth, before the evil days come, and they years draw nigh, when thou shalt say, I have no pleasure them.” Eccl. 12:1 NOW is the time to prepare before the years pass by and we find ourselves with men unprepared to teach and lead in the Kingdom of God. “For when by reason of the time ye ought to be teachers, ye have need again that some one teach you the rudiments of the first principles of the oracles of God; and are become such as have need of milk, and not of solid food. For every one that partaketh of milk is without experience of the word of righteousness; for he is a babe. But solid food is for fullgrown men, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern good and evil.” Heb 5:12-14 Young men, read, study and apply!
Sober-minded: circumspect, alert, watchful and careful. Rom. 12:3
Show Self As An Example of Good Works: young men are to be the model or figure valuable and virtuous deeds. Our honest labors and toils are to be worthy of imitation. “Let no man despise thy youth; but be thou an ensample to them that believe, in word, in manner of life, in love, in faith, in purity. “ (1Tim 4:12)
Uncorrupt: purity of doctrine and faith
Gravity: honesty, venerableness, reverence and fidelity.
Sound Speech That Cannot Be Condemned: wholesome and fitness in word and thought. “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart Be acceptable in thy sight, O Jehovah, my rock, and my redeemer.” (Psalm 19:14) To live such a life of blamelessness will not only bring no reproach upon Christ’s holy bride, but one is preparing to fulfill the qualifications of 1 Timothy 3 and Titus 1.
Let’s all live in such a way that befits and glorifies the sound doctrine Jesus Christ!
The apostle John is best known as the writer of “love”. In his gospel and epistles there are many references to God’s love for man and man’s love for God and his fellow man; But John also spoke of men who were guilty of lying. Let’s briefly consider these Bible liars.
Those who claim fellowship with God, yet walk in darkness. “If we say that we have fellowship with him and walk in the darkness, we lie, and do not the truth.” (1John 1:6) If a man claims to be a child of God, but lives a life that is contrary to God, he is a liar! This is hypocrisy. Preaching righteousness, while living for self.
Those who claim to know God, yet do not obey His commandments. “He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.” (1John 2:4) The individual who claims to be a follower of God, but who is unwilling to obey the commandments of Christ is a liar! Many people claim to follow God’s instructions, but they have never repented of their sins, nor have they been baptized “for the remission” of their sins (Acts 2:38). In fact, many openly defy Christ’s commands. Men may claim to follow God, but when they pervert His worship and resist to follow his pattern, he is a liar! Some have added mechanical instruments of music, while others have subtracted His weekly communion and memorial, the Lord’s Supper (Ephesians 5:19 Acts 20:7). Their lives and actions are nothing but lies.
The man who denies that Jesus is the Christ, is a liar. “Who is the liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the Christ? This is the antichrist, even he that denieth the Father and the Son. Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: he that confesseth the Son hath the Father also.” (1John 2:22-23) Some people express a faith without truly believing; this disbelief is disobedience and a denial. Belief in Christ is essential (Hebrews 11:6). It is a belief in His authority and sovereignty. He has the right to rule, and I am obliged to submit to Him and obey His commandments. (Matthew 7:21) Notice that “the anti-Christ” is not necessarily a single historical figure, but you and I can be anti-Christ in our treatment of the Lord. (also consider Matthew 10:32-33)
Those who claim to love God, yet hate their brothers are liars. “If a man say, I love God, and hateth his brother, he is a liar: for he that loveth not his brother whom he hath seen, cannot love God whom he hath not seen. And this commandment have we from him, that he who loveth God love his brother also.” (1John 4:20-21) It is impossible for a man to love God and at the same time hate his brother. We may dislike the actions or behavior of some people, but we must never allow hatred to enter into our heart, lest we fail to love God and become a liar. John had earlier written, “Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer…” (1John 3:15); And what makes murder such a heinous sin is its devalued worth of the life given by God and its vile disregard of God’s precious image (Genesis 9:4-6) In a sense, to kill man is to kill God, and such is the fruit and essence of hatred.
Those who add to the Word of God. “Whosoever goeth onward and abideth not in the teaching of Christ, hath not God: he that abideth in the teaching, the same hath both the Father and the Son.” (2 John 9) “Add thou not unto his words, Lest he reprove thee, and thou be found a liar.” (Proverbs 30:6) We are warned throughout the Word of God to leave it as it is written (Deuteronomy 4:2 1Corinthians 4:6 Revelation 22:18-19). Please make sure that you have not added to the Word of God or bound where you ought not to have bound. Super-organizations, voting members in or out, counting beads, social and entertainment functions, etc. are unscriptural and need to be repented of and eliminated! Let us not be found liars when it comes to altering the Words of God.
Please do not be found to be a liar. The eternal place of the liar is reserved “in the lake that burneth with fire and brimstone” (Revelation 21:8)
“Lie not one to another; seeing that ye have put off the old man with his doings.” (Colossians 3:9)