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


Volume 15, Number 04

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

Web sites:
Mt. Baker church
Bible Answers

Editor......Joe R. Price

Morris Bass
Rick Holt

Aaron Bass
Rich Brooks
Mike Finn
Dan Head


In this issue:

Who is the Minister in Your Church?
Jerry Fite

How would you answer this question? Some, focusing upon the end of the question, would kindly inform the questioner that it is the Lord’s church. Jesus said, “I will build my church.” It is the Lord’s church, not mine (Matthew 16:18, cf. Romans 16:16)! Others, focusing upon the main thrust of the question, would probably give the name of the preacher who regularly stands before them preaching the Word. 

     Is the preacher of the Gospel considered a “minister” in the New Testament? Timothy certainly was. Paul “sent Timothy, our brother and God’s minister in the gospel of Christ, to establish you, and to comfort you concerning your faith” (I Thessalonians 3:2). As an “evangelist”, he was to “fulfill his ministry” (2 Timothy 4:5).  Epaphras, in teaching the Colossians the truth of the gospel, was a “faithful minister of Christ” (Colossians 1:5, 7). As an apostle, Paul was involved in the “ministry of reconciliation” as he preached “the word of reconciliation” (2 Corinthians 5:18-19).

     A minister is one who serves others. The Greek word “diakoneo” denotes the action of serving others without telling us the nature of that service. As we have just noticed, the evangelist in preaching the Gospel is ministering. But is the preacher the only minister in your church? 

     We might say, “No, for we are blessed with men who serve the local church as ‘“deacons’”. So the Apostles could devote their time to “the ministry of the word”, they provided for some men to be selected to “serve tables” (Acts 6:2-6). They were to make sure the widows in the local church at Jerusalem were served their daily portion of food. The apostles were ministers-preaching, but also were Stephen and six other men-waiting tables. In the local church, qualified men are authorized by the Lord to serve the members, making sure physical needs are met (cf. I Timothy 3:8-12). Scripturally, you could count the preacher and then add the number of deacons in the local church to answer the question. Are these all you have?

     No, for all members of the church are ministers, or should be. This is God’s design for His church. The Lord appointed apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers “for the perfecting of the saints, unto the work of ministering, unto the building up of the body of Christ” (Ephesians 4:12). The apostles, evangelists and others engaged in teaching were to equip Christians so they could minister in building up or strengthening the church.  Each of the members are involved in ministering as “the working of each several part” in building up the church in love (Ephesians 4:16). Each Christian ministers to the Lord by ministering to the needs of fellow members (cf. Matthew 25:40, 44). Members who give money to help the physical needs of fellows Christians are “ministering” to the saints (2 Corinthians 9:1, 12). Following the example of Jesus, we are the greatest when we are serving others (Mk. 10:44-45). Humbling ourselves to meet the needs of others is what ministers do. You are a minister, aren’t you?   –Glad Tidings, Dec. 18, 2011


Our Clothing: Does it Matter to God?
Joe R. Price

The clothing we choose to wear may not “make or break” how others view us, but what we wear as well as our attitude toward when we wear it and where we wear it may very well determine whether or not we are pleasing God.


1.  Indicates life’s situations:

  a. Rich, Lk. 16:19
  b. Poor, Jas. 2:2
  c. Work or occupation, 1 Kgs. 19:19 (2 Kgs. 2:13); Matt. 3:4

2.  Indicates attitudes of heart:

  a. Joy and sorrow, Exo. 33:4
  b. Sorrow over sin, distress and anguish (sackcloth), Jonah 3:6-9
  c. Ornaments of virginity, Jer. 2:32 (2 Sam. 13:18; Psa. 45:13-14)
  d. Gifts of blessings, Gen. 24:53
  e. Purity and reverence, 1 Pet. 3:2-4
  f.  Shamefastness and sobriety, or the lack thereof, 1 Tim. 2:9-10

3.  Indicates morality:

  a. Harlotry, Prov. 7:10 (Gen. 38:5); Rev. 17:4
  b. Pride, haughtiness, Isa. 3:16-23
  c. Display before people, Matt. 23:5
  d. Modesty, 1 Tim. 2:9-10
  e. Purity of holiness, Rev. 21:2
  f.  Devotion to God’s word, Num. 15:37-40

4.  Indicates occasions / circumstances of life:

  a. Widowhood, Gen. 38:14
  b. Service as priests in house of God, Exo. 28:1-4; 40-43
  c. Wedding, Matt. 22:11 (bride, Jer. 2:32; Rev. 21:2)
  d. To beautify or to attract, Ezek. 16:11; 23:40; Jer. 4:30
  e. Honor / Celebration, Gen. 41:42; Dan. 5:7, 29; Esther 8:15; Lk. 15:22

5.  Figurative usages:

  a. Personal works of righteousness, Isa. 64:6
  b. Garments of salvation, Isa. 61:10
  c. Righteous acts of saints, Rev. 19:8 (3:5; 7:9)
  d. Armor of God, Eph. 6:13-17
  e. Sin, Zech. 3:3-5

Christians should wear respectful attire at all times. Clothing generally reflects our attitude toward what we are doing. Remember that we are here to worship God, not lounge around on the sofa. It is only right to dress appropriately. (Cf. 1 Cor. 14:40)

The “casual worship” movement (reflected by the very casual clothing and conduct at worship services) reflects a diminishing attitude of reverent regard for one’s presence before and approach to Almighty God (cf. Hab. 2:20; Exo. 28:31-43).

It is true that God looks at the heart and not the outward person (1 Sam. 16:6-7). However, it would be wrong to use this truth as a license to disregard and be disrespectful of what we are doing and who we are worshipping when we assemble. We are to be holy in all our conduct (1 Pet. 1:15-16). That includes the clothing we choose to wear when we worship as well as every other occasion. 


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

Danger Signs

Scripture Reading:   Hebrews 6:1-8

1. Our daily purpose is to grow to spiritual maturity in Christ, 2 Pet. 3:18 (Heb. 6:1).
2. Our adversary works to prevent this and devour us, 1 Pet. 5:8.
3. We are in danger of falling if we do not examine our spiritual strength (faith) and devote ourselves to growth. 2 Cor. 13:5; 1 Cor. 10:12-13.
4. Danger signs of falling away from God.

I. ISOLATION. (“I don’t need/want anybody’s help.”)

  A. God’s Word Says this is Selfishness, Prov. 18:1; 14:12; 28:26; Eccl. 4:9-12 (Gal. 6:2); Deut. 25:17-18.
  B. Review and Resolve (2 Cor. 13:5), Rom. 12:9-16.


  A. The Counselors We Turn to Says a Good Deal about Us, Prov. 1:10-19 (1 Kgs. 12:6-8, 12-14; 2 Chrn. 22:2-4; 1 Tim. 4:1-2; Prov. 11:14; Psa. 119:24 (17-24).
  B. Review and Resolve, Psa. 1:1-2; Prv. 3:1-4


  A. Our Friends Will Either Hurt or Help Us, 1 Cor. 15:33; Prov. 19:6; 1:10; Tit. 1:4; Prov. 27:6, 9; 17:17.
  B. Review and Resolve, Jno. 15:14.

IV. FAILURE TO PRAY. Lk. 18:1, 8

  A. Prayer Suggests a Healthy Relationship with God, Heb. 4:16; Lk. 11:1-4; 1 Ths. 5:17
  B. Review and Resolve, Mk. 1:35-37 (Lk. 5:16); Phil. 4:6.

   We must see the danger signs that warn of spiritual catastrophe! Be steadfast and abound in the work of the Lord, 1 Cor. 15:58.


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

God Keeps Us from Falling

Scripture Reading:   Jude 20-25

1. God’s interest is our salvation, Rom. 8:31-37.
2. God can guard us from falling, Jude 24-25.
  a. Guarded through our faith, 1 Pet. 1:5.
  b. We must participate with God and live by faith, 2 Cor. 5:7; Phil. 2:11-12; Eph. 2:10.
3. What God has done and given us to keep us from falling.

I. THE SINLESS EXAMPLE OF JESUS, 1 Pet. 2:21-22. (Heb. 12:1-3)

  A. Follow His Steps, 1 Jno. 2:5-6 (3:24).


  A. Jesus was Raised for Our Justification, Rom. 4:25; Rom. 8:34; Heb. 7:25-27; 4:14-16.
  B. His Resurrection Assures Ours, 2 Cor. 4:14; 1 Cor. 6:14.

III. THE WORD OF GOD, Jas. 1:21.

  A. We will not Stumble when we Obey, 2 Pet. 1:10-11 (5-9); 3:18; Rom. 16:25.

IV. THE BLOOD OF CHRIST, 1 Jno. 1:7-9.

  A. The Christian’s Cleansing from Present Sin is Available, 1 Jno. 1:8-10; Psa. 32:5; 38:18; Acts 8:22-24; Jas. 5:16; 2 Cor. 7:9; Prov. 28:13.
  B. God’s Plan of Pardon Helps Keep Us from Falling Away, Acts 8:22.

V.  THE ARMOR OF GOD, Eph. 6:10-17.

  A. We Wear this Armor in Faith, 6:10-13.
  B. Defended from Satan and Sin, we Advance to Victory, Eph. 6:13.

VI. GOD’S LONGSUFFERING, 2 Pet. 3:14-15.

  A. Because God Desires Our Repentance and Salvation, 3:9; Rom. 2:4; Matt. 24:44 (Rom. 2:5-6); Jude 24; 1 Pet. 4:12-13.

Concl. God wants us all to be saved (1 Tim. 2:4; 2 Pet. 3:9).


(Current events in the light of Scripture)

Can't Predict End of World
Joe R. Price

Harold Camping, the 90-year old head of Family Radio Ministry, has made numerous predictions of the end of the world over the past decades. Those gaining the most recent attention announced May 21, 2011 as the day of rapture and October 21, 2011 as Judgment Day. Wrong! “Each time the date passed, he did not admit to mistaking the timing but instead reasoned that the events happened ‘spiritually’ rather than physically” (“Harold Camping Admits Sin, Announces End to Doomsday Predictions”,

     Camping now admits his failures but thinks God is using the May 21, 2011 failure for great good. A statement on the ministry’s website says in part, “Yes, we humbly acknowledge we were wrong about the timing; yet though we were wrong God is still using the May 21 warning in a very mighty way.” It goes on to say, “But we now realize that those people who were calling our attention to the Bible's statement that ‘of that day and hour knoweth no man’ (Matthew 24:36 & Mark 13:32), were right in their understanding of those verses and Family Radio was wrong. Whether God will ever give us any indication of the date of His return is hidden in God's divine plan.”

     The website statement continues, “We have learned the very painful lesson that all of creation is in God's hands and He will end time in His time, not ours! We humbly recognize that God may not tell His people the date when Christ will return, any more than He tells anyone the date they will die physically.”

     God has already said He will not tell us the date of Christ’s return! Camping is still holding out hope that someday – some way – God will tell us when Christ will return. He will not! The day of Christ’s return will come suddenly and unexpectedly (1 Ths. 5:1-10). Therefore, we must be watchful for we “do not know what hour your Lord is coming…for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect” (Matt. 24:42, 44).  


Created by Chuck Sibbing.  03/12/2012

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