What The Bible Says
“What The Bible Says - Vol. 2 / No. 10”
What The Bible Says
Vol. II - No. 10 / October 20, 2019
We are moving into the season called "Fall" or "Autumn". It is a season of change. I remember the first time I had ever went away from home to college in Florida. It was in the summer of 1970 and I did not return till December of that year. I had considered what would it be that I would miss the most and concluded that, since Florida did not have mountains, it would be the mountains that I would miss. To my surprise, I did not miss the mountains nearly as much as I missed the change from Summer to Fall to Winter.
Some changes are necessary while others are not and some changes are welcome while other aren't. If all is normal, we change from a child into an adult, from young to old but some changes have to be deliberately made. They just don't happen by themselves. We are born into this world in a state of innocence; not knowing right from wrong. (Romans 7:7-12). But, through the process of teaching and learning what God expects of us, we make the same kind of choice that Joshua spoke to the children of Israel about in Joshua 24:15 when he said, "...choose you this day whom ye will serve."
Ultimately, on our own, we choose the way of Satan and the way of sin. "For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God." (Romans 3:23). We choose to sin and sin separates us from God (Isaiah 59:1,2). Thus, we choose death (spiritual death) for "the wages of sin is death." (Romans 6:23). There is another choice which is available to us: the choice of being reconciled back to God. That choice involves meeting the conditions God as set for the removal of sin. Faith (Hebrews 11:6; Romans 10:17), repentance (Luke 13:3,5; Acts 2:38), confessing Christ to be the Son of God (Romans 10:10; Acts 8:37), and being baptized (buried) will result in the forgiveness of sin (Colossians 2:12; Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38). This I can and will choose to do or not do. The choice is mine. If God's conditions are met, a change will occur: I will be changed from one who is lost in sin to one who is saved by the blood of Christ. What a change!
—E.R. Hall, Jr.
"DOES MORAL GOODNESS MAKE ONE A CHRISTIAN?"
Many honest and sincere souls mistakenly believe that if a person is morally good, then he is a Christian. No one can be a faithful follower of Christ without being on a high moral plane. However, Christianity is more than merely being moral.
Acts 10 tells about a man named Cornelius, whose living standard, from a moral standpoint, was above reproach. The moral life of this man would put many Christians to shame. He is described (Acts 10) as a “devout man,” “a just man,” and one, “which gave much alms to the people.” In spite of these good traits, he was not a child of God.
Peter came to Cornelius’ house and told him what he needed to do to be in a saved state. Before this, it is clear Cornelius was an unsaved person. In Acts 11, Peter defended himself to the Jewish brethren for having preached to the Gentiles. In doing so, Peter cited what the angel had said to Cornelius, which was, “. . . Send men to Joppa, and call for Simon, whose surname is Peter; who shall tell thee words, whereby thou and all thy house shall be saved (vs. 13-14).” Thus, before the arrival of Peter and his preaching, Cornelius, a very moral man, was unsaved.
Further, Cornelius’ prayers and good deeds did not save him, nor was he saved because of hearing an angel. Instead, he was saved by hearing and believing (Acts 15:7), repenting, (Acts 17:30-31), and by being baptized (Acts 10:48, 2:38).
If moral goodness could save someone, undoubtedly Cornelius, a cut above most, would have been saved. Moral virtue alone could not save him, and it cannot save us today. However, we must not get the wrong idea. A Christian must have high morals, but it takes more than merely being morally good to be a Christian and to be saved.
"NEITHER PROTESTSANT NOR CATHOLIC"
It’s pretty easy to see that this congregation or church is not Catholic. There is no Roman priest in charge of the parish or nuns to serve, no Vatican connection or leader status for the Pope, and no incense or infant baptisms in our worship and work. Since it is obvious we are not Catholics most will say we must be Protestants.
The assumption made is that Christians are either Catholic or Protestant. If you are not one you must be the other. But we are not Protestants either. We are not of the Protestant Reformation that protested the excesses of the Catholic Church and sought to reform it. Beyond Catholic tradition and Protestant theology we are, simply, Christians.
We understand that this sounds strange in a religious world complicated with so many denominations. If you ask a man today what he is religiously he doesn’t say “I am a Christian.” He says he is a Baptist or a Methodist or a Presbyterian or a Pentecostal. In the New Testament followers of Jesus were content to be, simply, Christians (Acts 11:26).
Christ’s people were described by God in several ways in the Scripture, long before Catholics and Protestants existed. To God they were His children (1 John 1:1-3). To Christ they were His disciples (John 8: 31-32). To each other they were brothers (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18). And to the world they were, simply, Christians (1 Peter 4:16).
We are not claiming to be the first denomination, the best denomination, the most conservative denomination, the non-denominational denomination, or a denomination at all! We simply follow the New Testament to be Christians, in the unity Christ called for (John 17:21) as an invitation to the world, there for all to see.
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--- E.R. Hall, Jr.
SCHEDULE OF SERVICES
For The East Albertville Church Of Christ
4777 U.S. Highway 431
Albertville, AL 35950
Bible Classes …………..….…………… 9:30 AM
Morning Worship ……..…….….……… 10:30 AM
Evening Worship …………………........ 5:00 PM
Bible Classes …………..………........... 7:00 PM
WBSA 93.5 FM/1300 AM ………………………….. 8:30 AM
Monday - Saturday
WBSA 93.5 FM/1300 AM ………………………….. 11:15 AM
Website: www. EastAlbertville.org