Your word is a lamp to my feet
And a light to my path.
Volume 02, Number
church of Christ
1860 Mt. Baker HWY
P.O. Box 30821
Bellingham, WA 98228
Bible Classes..........9:30 AM
Bible Classes.........7:00 PM
Mt. Baker church
In this issue:
WHY DO YOU WAIT?
We sometimes sing an invitation song with these words. The
question is important because getting right with God is not something to be
put off for a later time. In 2 Corinthians 6:2 Paul declares that today is
the acceptable time, today is the day of salvation. This is a quotation from
Isaiah 49:8. Back in Isaiah's day, the Israelites were not serving God
faithfully. Isaiah warned them to not delay in returning to God. The same
message is true today.
I am sure a lot of people have the intention
to get right with God and to benefit from His grace. Their plan is to do it
"Someday". The problem is that they wait for different reasons.
Let us examine some of the reasons people
use to put off obeying the Gospel.
Some feel like they must get their life
right before they obey the gospel. News
flash! None of us are perfect. If we wait until we are perfect, we will
never get there. If we are going to serve God and obey God, even as
imperfect as we are, we must know that if we make the effort to serve God,
God is going to accept us. Sure, we must learn to grow and mature in our
faith, and God allows for that to happen, but also remember that we need to
be making the effort all the time to improve.
2 Peter 3:18 "But grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord and
Savior, Jesus Christ; to Him be the glory forever and ever, amen". Though we
are human, and have flaws, the goal of every Christian is to be perfect like
Jesus is perfect. We at least should be trying because Jesus and His
apostles commanded it (Matthew 5:48; 2 Corinthians 13:11; Ephesians 4:13;
Colossians 4:12; 2 Timothy 3:17; James 1:4)
Some people cannot let go of their previous lifestyle.
They might become an outcast from their normal circle of friends, and that
causes problems True Christians learn that they gain new friends when they
obey the gospel and are added to the Lord's body. These new friends have an
interest in their soul, whereas those former friends could care less about
your soul, their soul, or the soul of anyone else. And what those past
friends will do are things that God would not be pleased with.
Some may be thinking about this, but an
illness sets in or they get hurt in an accident, and their plans get laid
aside. Some who get sick find
that the illness is fatal, and they never get well enough to do what is
necessary to become saved. Some are killed in an accident and never have the
opportunity to obey.
Some may not be able to shake off bad
habits. People get involved in
drugs or alcohol. Some get involved in sexual activity that God considers
abominable. (Actually any sex outside of lawful marriage is sinful). Some do
things that may not be as bad as other things, but still they interfere with
serving God as they should.
Whatever the reason people use to put off
their obedience, it is dangerous to their soul. None are promised that there
will be another day. Circumstances may prevent one from the opportunity to
obey. Their soul is at stake and waiting is not good.
But too many wait and never get the chance
to obey the gospel, and become a Christian. For some who have obeyed the
gospel and became a Christian, they are putting off their Christian duty,
and thus this same warning goes to them. Do not wait, the time when you are
able to do something right is quickly passing away. Failure to act now could
mean the difference of going to heaven or ending up in hell (James 4:17).
Obviously, if you never obey the gospel, your destiny in hell is certain.
Jesus is waiting with
open arms for you, why not come to Him now. Learn what you must do to be
saved. Believe on Jesus as Lord and Him being the Son of God who died on the
cross for your sins. Repent of your past life, and change to be pleasing to
God. Confess the name of Jesus publicly, and be baptized for the remission
of your sins. Then grow to live a faithful life.
NO MEALS ON WHEELS
Michael R. Baggett
“Ye seek me, not because ye saw the
miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled” (John
Jesus spoke the words above to part of a
crowd of people who took ships and followed Jesus back to Capernaum.
Following Jesus is certainly not a bad thing; it is the motives of the
people following Jesus that present a problem. When Jesus fed the 5,000 with
two small fish and 5 barley loaves, He hoped the people would come to
believe in who He is; instead, many saw Him as a convenient source of food.
Jesus makes it plain their motives are not good when He points out they are
laboring only to be filled again. Let the reader understand, Jesus did not
feed the crowds to attract the crowds. Jesus did not use gimmicks. Jesus
does not want local churches today stooping to worldly measures to increase
A few weeks ago, I saw a local church
advertising on their digital church sign they were having an old car show.
That ought to attract the car lovers to attend at least once! Today, I saw
where the same church is having a Bearded One BBQ. Throw in the Trunk or
Treat and inflatables and a few free meals and the “work” is soon thriving.
Jesus didn’t think so.
Someone rightly said, “Sitting in a church
pew no more makes one a Christian as does one sitting in a garage makes one
a car.” Jesus pointed out that some people followed Him hoping to be fed a
free meal. Jesus didn’t want people following Him just because they could
fill their fleshly appetites. Jesus wants people who hunger and thirst for
righteousness! (Matthew 5:6). Jesus came to seek and to save the lost, not
to provide side shows and big dinners to attract the masses! When Jesus
worked the mighty miracles of feeding crowds, there was real hunger, and all
miracles were done to prove who He is, and that people might believe
(Matthew 15:32; John 20:30-31).
It has been rightly said, if you get people
to attend using church dinners, clown acts or entertainment, you’ll have to
keep the free dinners and entertainments on the agenda to keep these
worldly-minded people attending. What good are the people who are only
converted to fun and food? Take away the entertainment and refreshments and
there goes the numbers. Well, that’s all you had in the first place
-numbers, right? Jesus doesn’t care about large numbers; Jesus cares about
true disciples who will take up their cross and follow Him! (Matthew 16:24).
Jesus told those people seeking to feed only
their fleshly appetites they were laboring for the wrong things. In other
words, Jesus wasn’t going to become their meal on wheels. Jesus told, “Labor
not for the meat (food) which perisheth, but for that meat which endureth
unto everlasting life…” (John 6:27). What is that food which endures to
everlasting life? It is Jesus! Jesus went on to preach to them how that He
is the Bread of Life (John 6:48). What Jesus had to say offended many of
them and they turned away and walked with Him no more (John 6:66). So goes
the followers who are in it for the fun, food, entertainment, or social
Paul, an apostle, said, “The gospel is the
power of God unto salvation” (Romans 1:16). The gospel will do everything
God intended it to do, if only we will preach it! The word of God makes us
thoroughly equipped to save the lost and edify the saved, it doesn’t need
man’s frills to work. (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
Let us trust in the preached gospel of Jesus
Christ to do the work of attracting and saving the lost, not in food and
entertainment. Jesus wants true disciples, not worldly followers. Are you
attending a congregation only because of its comforts and because it feeds
your fleshy lusts? Think hard on these things.
Created by Chuck Sibbing, last updated.
The Mount Baker Beacon is a
weekly publication of the Mt. Baker church of Christ, Bellingham, WA.
Send all questions, comments to the editor, John Bass at (360) 325-5149