What The Bible Says
“What The Bible Says - Vol. 3 / No. 19”
What The Bible Says
Vol. III - No. 19 / February 14, 2021
INTERMINGLING THE PHYSICAL WITH THE SPIRITUAL
If we are not careful we will gradually intermingle the physical with the spiritual. This was a problem even in the early church. Corinth turned a spiritual feast (the Lord's supper) into a physical festival (1 Cor. 11). What was supposed to be the Lord's supper became their own supper (1 Cor. 11:21). Paul reminded them that they had "houses to eat and drink in" and to so desecrate the spiritual feast of the Lord's supper with the physical was to "despise the church of God" (1 Cor. 11:22). So, he said, "If any man hunger let him eat at home: that ye come not together unto condemnation" (1 Cor. 11:34).
Long ago the denominations failed to see the distinction between the carnal and the spiritual, so they built their kitchens and recreation rooms, and people soon looked upon church-furnished recreation and social activities as an integral part of the church’s mission. I can remember when Christians thought this was ridiculous. When I was a boy, the Presbyterians in my home town built a kitchen on to their building. Our brethren ridiculed it, and exclaimed, "The very idea of a kitchen in a church building!" Now, the church of Christ there whose building is just across the street, has a special building for a kitchen and a recreation room where they have social activities like baby and bridal showers, pot lucks, etc.
Today, the liberal churches ape the denominations. There are liberal churches that have recreation programs, youth ministers, million dollar gymnasiums and well-furnished kitchens, etc. The spiritual-minded person finds this to be unscriptural and abhorrent. Worship is designed to draw our minds away from such things and focus them upon that which transcends all of this. The carnally minded think the church is not fulfilling its mission if it is not filling stomachs or entertaining someone. They intermingle praying with playing, and the social with the spiritual.
We all need to be careful how we walk. Our Lord did not die for a YMCA or a Red Cross society. He shed His blood to purchase a divine spiritual institution with a divine spiritual mission. We must keep the line distinct and wide between the secular, the carnal, the physical, and the divine spiritual. The church has a threefold mission: Evangelism, edification and benevolence among its needy members. That does not include recreation and social activities. These are fine, but we must refrain from anything that remotely indicates that we are intermingling the social with the spiritual.
A brother was asked how services were last Sunday. He replied, "The preaching was weak, the coffee was cold, and the donuts were old." N. B. Hardeman used to say, "The less spiritual a person is the more fried chicken it takes to keep him interested." Someone has said, "If we must use tea parties, fried chicken dinners, and ice cream socials to keep a church interested, the church is as cold as the ice cream, as weak as the tea, and as dead as the chicken.”
Churches generally need more reverence in their worship and more spirituality in their members. Let it not be said of us as of ancient Israel, "They sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play" (1 Cor. 10:7).
—James P. Needham
'SUPER BOWL BASH'
It is nothing unusual, in fact it is becoming to be expected, of ‘ hurches' to be more in touch with the feelings and lives of its ‘ embers'. Therefore you have read the above advertisements on church marques. I’ve even heard of a church in Lubbock, Tx. that moved a big screen TV into the auditorium to watch the Super Bowl and conducted worship services during the commercials. Would you want to be in that building watching the Super Bowl when the Lord returned? While some churches substitute a ‘bash’ for worship, others completely call off services to accommodate their member’s desires. Are such folks really serious about their faith?
How do we fit these verses into a Super Bowl service or calling off worship services all together: “But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.” (Matthew 6:33) or “If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.” (Colossians 3:1,2). When we substitute a Super Bowl party or cancel services to watch a football game, WHO are we seeking first? Where, can we honestly say, have we set our affections?
The Lord’s church is not to cater to the things of this world nor to those who love the world. It stands to be the “pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Timothy 3:15). The church must present and uphold the truth of God’s word (John 17:17) and that is not done when it resorts to “meat and drink” (Romans 14:17) or ‘bashing’ as many churches have become caught up in. One thing is for sure, we won’t be watching football games in Heaven. What we will be doing is worshiping God. (Revelation 4). That’s what we need to be doing here and now in preparation for a home in Heaven.
—E.R. Hall, Jr.
A LITTLE FELLOW’S DAD
I may never be as clever as my neighbor down the street,
I may never be as wealthy as some other men I meet;
I may never have the glory that some other men have had,
But I’ve got to be successful as a little fellow’s dad.
There are certain dreams I cherish that I’d like to see come true,
There are things I would accomplish ere my working time is through;
But the task my heart is set on is to guide a little lad
And to make myself successful as the little fellow’s dad.
It is that one job I dream of; it’s the task I think of most;
If I’d fail that growing youngster I’d have nothing else to boast;
For though wealth and fame I’d gather, all my future would be sad,
If I failed to be successful as that little fellow’s dad.
I may never get earth’s glory; I may never gather gold,
Men may count me as a failure when my business life is told;
But if he who follows after is a faithful Christian, I’ll be glad--
For I’ll know I’ve been successful as a little fellow’s dad.
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--- E.R. Hall, Jr.
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4777 U.S. Highway 431
Albertville, AL 35950
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Morning Worship ……..…….….……… 10:30 AM
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