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


Volume 15, Number 21

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:
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Editor......Joe R. Price

Morris Bass
Rick Holt

Aaron Bass
Rich Brooks
Mike Finn
Dan Head


In this issue:

The Fallen Christian
Dean Blackwell

     It is always tragic to see a person who fits the description of the fallen Christian given in Hebrews 6:4-6. It looks and sounds as if he is at this moment, at least, “ renew (him) again to repentance”.

     The passage is written not to the one who left but to those who remain. It is a warning to the faithful not to get discouraged just because someone refuses to open his eyes.

     When a person purposely leaves, most of the time there is nothing you or I can do to convince him to come back. It does not say that they cannot repent. It teaches that we have no other means to reach or convince them. The reason he is gone is because he has rejected the truth. The only one who can change his mind is himself. 

     Even the apostle John indicates that when one is sinning a sin “unto death” (I take that to mean willfully unrepentant), prayer is no longer useful (1 Jno. 5:16; cf. Jer. 7:16; 11:14; 14:11).

     Sadly, the only thing left to do is to leave the willfully sinful and unrepentant to their own devises as they trample underfoot the Son of God and count the blood of the Savior unholy (Heb. 10:26-29). The Lord will exact His judgment (Heb. 10:30-31).

     Since he is making his choice to forsake the Lord and His truth, you are left with the decision to assess when no longer to cast pearls before swine (Matt. 7:6). There comes a time when, due to his rejection, you should no longer “beat your head against the wall”. You will have to judge when that time comes. But, it sounds like it is close, if not already here.

     Meanwhile, my counsel is to tell him he knows what must be done. He knows all the arguments. And, of course, you should continue to set a godly example before him; perhaps his heart will eventually soften and he will “come to himself” and return to God (Lk. 15:17).

     Tell him that you care. Leave the door open for his return, but understand that he has to be the one who decides to enter. When he is ready to be restored, the church is ready.

     Tell him that God is patient with us, but there will come an end to that patience – when we die or when Jesus comes.

     That is all you can do. He knows. He must decide.


The Necessity of Water Baptism
Joe R. Price

That which is necessary is not optional. Breathing, for example, is not optional. We cannot “take it or leave it”; without breathing we will die.

The same principle is true concerning our salvation from sin. There are certain necessary or essential things God has done, without which we cannot be saved. Christ death on the cross is God’s supreme expression of love, mercy and grace (Jno. 3:16; Rom. 5:6-10; Eph. 2:4-7). Without the benefit of His death in our life, we remain forever lost.

Likewise, the gospel of Christ commands certain necessary things of sinners in order to be saved by faith (Rom. 1:16; Eph. 2:8-9). Faith that saves is faith that obeys the gospel of Christ (Jas. 2:17, 24; Matt. 17:5; Heb. 5:8-9). One of the necessary things sinners must obey in order to be saved is the command of water baptism.

Water baptism is necessary in order to be saved. It is immersion in water, an action of faith in Christ (Acts 8:35-39). Jesus Christ commanded, “He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned” (Mk. 16:16). Jesus is clear: the sinner who believes and is baptized will be saved. Unbelievers are lost. Both belief and baptism are necessary, not only belief (the “faith only” doctrine is false). Baptism alone is not enough, either (baptism of babies who cannot believe is false). The apostle Peter taught that just like water saved Noah and his family by delivering them from the old world of sin into a new world cleansed of sin’s stain, “baptism doth also now save us” (1 Pet. 3:21, KJV). No wonder this same apostle commanded sinners to be baptized (Acts 10:48). If you are lost today, you must obey the command to be baptized to be saved from your sins.

Water baptism is necessary for the remission of sins. The problem of sin is real for every person. The result of sin is eternal death. Without God’s salvation we are lost (Rom. 3:23; 6:23). When the murderers of Jesus Christ became believers and were convicted of their sinful deed they cried out, “what shall we do?” The apostle Peter replied, “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:37-38). Water baptism is necessary and effective to accomplish God’s purpose of forgiveness (remission of sins) after the believer repents of his sins. On that day of Pentecost about three thousand souls who “gladly received his word were baptized” (Acts 2:41). Their sins were forgiven when they were baptized. If you believe and repent, then “gladly receive” the gospel and be baptized to be forgiven of your sins.

Water baptism is necessary in order to be saved by the blood of Christ. Without a doubt, the blood of Jesus redeems sinners (1 Pet. 1:18-19). His death is the one and only sacrifice capable of taking away the sins of the world (Jno. 1:29; Matt. 20:28). “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace” (Eph. 1:7). The sinner obtains the saving benefit of the blood of Christ when he is “baptized into His death” (Rom. 6:3). Only baptism puts the sinner into the death of Christ through which, by God’s grace, redemption is obtained. Hearing and believing the gospel, confessing faith and repenting does not put one “into His death”. Water baptism does (Rom. 6:3). To be saved by the blood of Christ you must be baptized “into His death”.

Water baptism is necessary in order to be in a saved relationship with God. When the believing, repentant sinner is baptized “into Christ” he puts on Christ (Rom. 6:3-5; Gal. 3:27). Without water baptism one is still outside of Christ and lost in sin. Sinners who are taught the gospel and believe it willingly submit to being baptized “in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit” (Matt. 28:19). Then they are “in Christ” and blessed with every spiritual blessing that comes with being a child of God (Eph. 1:3-5; Jno. 3:5). To be in a saved relationship with Christ as a child of God you must be baptized into Christ.

Water baptism is necessary in order to call on the name of the Lord. Many people believe the “sinner’s prayer” saves the lost soul. But, the sinner Saul prayed for three days and nights after Jesus appeared to him, and he was still lost (Acts 9:3-11). Prayer did not save him. The preacher Ananias (whom the Lord sent to Saul) asked a penetrating question that shows this is so: “And now, why are you waiting? Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord” (Acts 22:16). God calls sinners to salvation through the gospel (Mk. 16:15; 2 Ths. 2:14). The lost person calls on the Lord for salvation by being baptized to be cleansed by Christ’s blood. Perhaps you have been praying for God to save you. To be saved, wait no longer. Arise and be baptized and wash away your sins.

The New Testament is clear: water baptism is necessary for salvation. “He that believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned” (Mk. 16:16). Do you believe the gospel of Christ? Then arise and be baptized and be saved from your sins by Christ Jesus. 


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

Jesus is Dangerous!

Scripture Reading:   Matthew 12:15-21

1. Jesus is God’s Servant who declared justice to the nations and brought healing of the soul to all who trust in His name.
2. Yet, some saw Jesus as a dangerous threat, Jno. 5:16; 7:1.
3. Jesus is dangerous to all who refuse to believe and obey Him, Heb. 12:29.


  A. Destroys the Works of the Devil, 1 Jno. 3:8; Jno. 12:31-33; Matt. 12:28-29; 1 Pet. 2:22-24; Jno. 11:25-26; Heb. 2:14-15.
  B. He is Dangerous to the Servants of Satan, Jno. 12:48; Lk. 12:4-5; Matt. 22:37-39; Jno. 5:22-30; Mk. 11:12-14, 20-24.


  A. Bind Traditions of Men, Matt. 15:1-9.
  B. False Teachers, 2 Cor. 11:13-15, 3-4; 2 Cor. 11:3-4; Jude 4; 2 Pet. 2:1-3, 9.
  C. Hypocrites, Matt. 23:14, 25-33.


  A. “Dangerous” to Herod, Mt. 2:1-5, 12-16.
  B. “Dangerous” to Pilate and his Wife, Jno. 18:33-38; 19:1-12; Matt. 27:18-19.
  C. “Dangerous” to Jewish Leaders, Jno. 11: 47-53; Jno. 12:42-43.


  A. Those who Refuse to Hold God in their Knowledge, Rom. 1:28, 30; Rev. 17:1-2, 6, 14; Matt. 10:28; Rev. 18:2-8; 2 Pet. 3:11, 14

Conclusion   Jesus is gentle, yet He is a conqueror, Matt. 11:29; Rev. 5:5.


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

The Church of Christ Bible Authority (8)

Scripture Reading:   Ephesians 5:22-32

1. Failure to understand the church leads to many other errors that devalue importance of the church.
2. Must understand the church to appreciate and scripturally apply Bible authority.


  A. Church:  “Called Out Ones,” an Assembly, cf. Acts 7:38 (Hos. 11:1); Acts 19:39 (32, 41).
    1. Assembly of the saved, 1 Pet. 2:9-10; Acts 2:39; 2 Ths. 2:14; Matt. 16:18.
    2. Think “people” not “institution,” Acts 2:47; 6:1, 7; 5:14; 9:2; 1 Cor. 1:2.
  B. “Church” is a Collective Noun (like “herd,” “flock,” “tribe”, “family”); Acts 9:31; Gal. 1:2; Rom. 16:4; Col. 4:16; Matt. 16:18; 1 Cor. 15:9; Rom. 16:16.


  A. God’s People wherever they are Found, Matt. 16:18; Eph. 5:23-27; Acts 2:47; 1 Cor. 12:13; Eph. 4:4; 1 Tim. 3:15; 2 Tim. 2:19.
  B. Universal Church Denotes a Relationship with God, not an Organization.
    1. Universal church is not a single-functioning organization (institution); does not act as an organized unit here on earth.
    2. Functions distributively as each Christian lives for Christ, Eph. 5:24.
  C. The Universal Church is Composed of Individual Christians, not Local Churches, Eph. 1:22-23; 5:23, 30.


1. Universal church is all the saved without respect to time and place.
2. Local church is a specific group of Christians in a given location. Rev. 1:20; 2:1, 4-5


Created by Chuck Sibbing, last updated.  07/16/2012

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