And take…the sword of the Spirit, which  is the word of God.   Ephesians 6:17


Volume 14, Number 51

Published by
Mt. Baker
church of Christ

1860 Mt. Baker HWY
Mailing Address:

       P.O. Box 30821
Bellingham, WA 98228
       (360) 752-2692

Bible Classes..........9:30 AM
Worship..10:30AM; 6:00PM

Bible Classes.........7:00 PM
All sing last Wednesday

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Editor......Joe R. Price

Morris Bass
Rick Holt

Aaron Bass
Rich Brooks
Mike Finn
Dan Head


In this issue:

Judgments in the House of God
Joe R. Price

In 1 Peter 4:17 the apostle Peter spoke of judgment God’s house when he wrote the time had come “for judgment to begin at the house of God.” Since it was time for judgment to begin in God’s house almost two thousand years ago we should not think the time has passed for similar judgment today. Since God’s house is the church, we readily admit the church of Christ should and shall undergo judgments (Heb. 3:4-6; 1 Tim. 3:15).

As used in 1 Peter 4:17, “judgment” is “the process of judgment (separation, jrp) leading to a decision” (Vine, I:222).  In Peter’s context he is discussing the subject of intense persecutions of Christians. Christians are not to think it a strange thing when trials come upon them because of their faith (4:12). Instead, we are admonished to “rejoice” since such trials demonstrate our fellowship with Christ’s sufferings (4:13). God blesses and comforts the Christian who suffers for His name’s sake. So, he glorifies God and is not ashamed of being a Christian (4:14-16). All of this leads to Peter’s statement: “For the time has come for judgment to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the end of those who do not obey the gospel of God? Now ‘If the righteous one is scarcely saved, where will the ungodly and the sinner appear?’” (1 Pet. 4:17-18)

It is evident that persecution causes judgments (separa­tions) in the church. When persecution occurs the saved will be manifest by their perseverance. Persecution has the effect of putting one to the test. One’s reaction in the face of persecution proves his worthiness before God. This is why Peter described trials as a purifying process (1 Pet. 1:6-7). Some brethren will not withstand persecution. Consequently, they will be lost (Matt. 10:22). (There is no joy or comfort in observing this reality; yet, it is the clearly stated fact of the matter.) Peter affirms that those who do not obey the gospel of God will not be saved while warning the righteous that their salvation is only obtained with difficulty (1 Pet. 4:17-18).

Consider some additional things that apply God’s judgments upon the house of God.

Gospel preaching makes separations in the house of God. It is true; not every Christian is satisfied by gospel preaching. Even the apostle Paul encountered Christians who rejected the truth he preached (2 Cor. 11:1-15; Gal. 4:16; 1 Tim. 1:18-20; 2 Tim. 2:16-18). Some Christians prefer to have their ears scratched with false teaching rather than endure the force and effect of “sound doctrine” (2 Tim. 4:2-4). God’s word makes a separation (judgment) between Christians who will not accept sound doctrine and those who do. The whole counsel of God must be preached (Acts 20:27). Faithful Christians demand it even when it reproves and rebukes them (2 Tim. 4:2). How is your attitude toward the word of God when it applies to yourself? Your answer says a lot about whether you want all of God’s word or not.  “Do not correct a scoffer, lest he hate you; Rebuke a wise man, and he will love you. Give instruction to a wise man, and he will be still wiser; Teach a just man, and he will increase in learning (Prov. 9:8-9). When the gospel applies to our life let us readily receive it and obey it. Otherwise, it judges us unworthy of eternal life (cf. Jno. 12:48; Acts 13:46).

Corrective discipline makes separations in the house of God. Sometimes Christians consistently and continually refuse to obey the word of God. Their refusal to obey truth cannot be ignored by fellow Christians.  Every effort needs to be made to restore a fallen saint (Gal. 6:1; Jas. 5:19-20; Matt. 18:15-17). When a Christian refuses to repent before God and men the command to “withdraw yourselves” from that disorderly child of God must be obeyed in an attempt to save the lost (2 Ths. 3:6). This involves a congregational action of marking or taking note of the unrepentant Christian (Rom. 16:17; 1 Cor. 5:4-5). It also involves the individual action of faithful Christians to stop having social contact with the unrepentant Christian (1 Cor. 5:11; 2 Ths. 3:14). This action is designed to produce shame for sin in the heart of the sinner that will lead to repentance and salvation (1 Cor. 5:5; 2 Cor. 2:5-8; 2 Ths. 3:15). Corrective discipline is designed to separate the sinner from his sin. It is also designed to separate the church from sin and its influence (1 Cor. 5:1-8). Without question, its proper use requires faith, wisdom and love. God is applying a judgment in His house when we practice church discipline.

Factions make separations in the house of God. Nobody who loves truth and loves his brethren enjoys division. Heresy is a work of the flesh that is condemned by God (Gal. 5:20). When division occurs it has the effect of separating false brethren from true brethren (1 Cor. 11:19; 2 Jno. 2:19). While we work for unity we must realize that some brethren will not abide in the doctrine of Christ. When that happens it separates them from God and from His people (2 Jno. 9-11).

Christians are called upon to commit their souls to God in doing good in order to safeguard their souls in the face of persecution or anything else that would try to separate us from God (1 Pet. 4:19). Where will you appear when God’s judgments take place? (1 Pet. 4:18) 

-The Kaysville Herald (II:27), Feb. 2, 1992


You can find the complete outline of this sermon plus PowerPoint and MP3 Audio files at BIBLE ANSWERS

Marks of the NT Church (Part 2)

Scripture Reading:   Acts 2:36-41


  A. Its Authority: Jesus Christ, Matt. 28:18; Eph. 1:22-23; Col. 3:17.
  B. Its Membership: Christians, Acts 2:38-41, 47.
  C. Its Organization is Local, not Regional or Global.
    1. Local, independent churches, Acts 9:31; 16:3; Acts 14:23; Phil. 1:1; Acts 2:47.
    2. No mother churches, sponsoring churches, mission churches...
    3. No dioceses, districts, or councils.
  D. Its Worship: In Spirit and in Truth, Jno. 4:23-24; Acts 2:42.
    1. Lord's supper, Acts 20:7; 1 Cor. 11:18-20
    2. Prayer, Acts 2:42; 1 Cor. 14:15-16.
    3. Singing, Eph. 5:19.
    4. Giving, 1 Cor. 16:2.
    5. Teach God’s word, 1 Co. 14:26; Acts 2:42
  E. The Work of the Local Church.
    1. Evangelism, Acts 13:2-3; 2 Cor. 11:8.
    2. Edification, Eph. 4:11-12; 1 Cor. 14:26.
    3. Benevolent care of needy Christians, Acts 2:44-45; 4:32-35 (6:1-6; 11:27-30); 1 Tim. 5:16.
  F. The Lives of the Members of the Church of Christ.
    1. Live by faith, 2 Cor. 5:7.
    2. Servants of righteousness through obedient faith, Rom. 6:16-18.
    3. Living sacrifices who put Christ first in all things, Rom. 12:1-2; Matt. 6:33-34.


1. Only the saved are the church of Christ.
2. Only local churches (including churches of Christ) that bear the Bible marks of identity are New Testament churches. 


You can find the complete outline of this sermon plus PowerPoint and MP3 Audio files at BIBLE ANSWERS

Ingredients for Guaranteed Failure

Scripture Reading:   1 Samuel 12:19-25

1. How do you measure success? Materially? (Mk. 12:41-44; Mk. 8:36) Militarily? (Psa. 33: 16-17) Monetarily? (Prov. 11:4) God’s approval? (Josh. 1:8-9)
2. A righteous life is a successful life; it is the only lasting success! Prv. 10:1-7; Mt. 25:21, 23

(Put off ‘till tomorrow whatever you could have done today. DO IT LATER!) Acts 24:25; Prov. 6:6-11; 26:13-16

II. ALWAYS BLAME SOMEBODY ELSE! (Never take responsibility...for anything! Whenever possible respond...IT’S NOT MY FAULT!) Gen. 3:10-13; Lk. 14:15-20, 24; 2 Cor. 5:10

III. ALWAYS HAVE AN EXCUSE! (We live in an ENTITLEMENT society in which there are many VICTIMS with many excuses!) Rom. 5:12; Eph. 2:1-3; Deut. 24:16; Ezek. 18:4

IV.    REFUSE TO CHANGE! (Motto: Keep doing what you’ve always done so that you’ll keep getting what you’ve always got!) Prov. 28:13:14; Rom. 2:4-6, 8-9

V. DO NOT PRAY! (Never, EVER!, access the one source of power, love, mercy and forgiveness that can turn your entire life around.) Phil. 4:6-7; Heb. 4:15-16. (Matt. 26:36-46); Acts 8:22-24; Jas. 5:16-18

Conclusion  The final ingredient: Forget you ever read/heard this! Jas. 1:21-25

Five Ingredients for Failure…Guaranteed!!, Originally published in “GodThoughts” Volume 1, 2004 


(Current events in the light of Scripture)

Pick the Co-Parent of Your Choice
Joe R. Price

With all of the social networking (like Facebook) and match-making websites (like it is little wonder there is now an online group that matches people who want to become parents:

The fundamental concept behind Modamily is that we provide a network where members can meet other like-minded people who dream of becoming a parent. There are many ways to become a co-parent; and what Modamily does is help our members find someone that wants to raise a child in a similar fashion as they do. Modamily simple matches up the parents based on their desires and they decide how best to proceed from there.” (

     Are you looking for the emotional experience of parenthood but without the baggage of marriage? No problem: Modamily will find you a “co-parent”! Maybe you’re looking for another gay person who wants children but without a “committed relationship”. Don’t worry: Modamily will help you find just what you want!

     And so it goes in a society that selfishly rejects God’s moral norm of children as the loving result of marriage (Gen. 4:1-2). When a family (or nation) refuses the divine structure of marriage and the home for “the desire for other things”, its house will fall (Psa. 127:1-2; Prov. 14:34).

     Society is stabilized and sustained by the God-designed home. When husband and wife willingly cleave to each other they form an unbreakable family unit that gives children the security they need to become responsible adults, prepared to repeat the cycle (Gen. 2:23-24). But, when selfish desires and sinful passions define the family it is diminished in value and becomes deformed in structure (see Eph. 5:22-6:4 for the composition, character and conduct of the God-arranged home). Do not be deceived! Modern families will succeed just as families always have when God and His will for the home is honored. 


Created by Chuck Sibbing.  02/06/2012

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