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


Volume 15, Number 44

Published by
Mt. Baker
church of Christ

1860 Mt. Baker HWY
Mailing Address:

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

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Worship..10:30AM; 6:00PM

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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:


Joe R. Price

The creative majesty of the heavens and the earth announce the power and divinity of their Maker (Rom. 1:20). We can easily envision young David looking heavenward while tending his father’s sheep. We see him beholding the immensity of the heavens and in his mind contemplating man’s apparent insignificance. “When I consider Your heaven, the work of Your fingers, The moon, the stars, which You have ordained, What is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You visit him?” (Psa. 8:3-4) Amazed by the glory and honor with which God has crowned mankind and humbled by the dominion God has given man over His creation, David was rejoiced in God’s excellent name, “O Lord, our Lord, How excellent is Your name in all the earth!” (Psa. 8:5-9)

Psalm 19 beautifully sets before us the declarations of God’s creation (verses 1-6) and God’s word (verses 7-11). Each of these declarations evoke within the perceptive person a yearning to be right with God; to be cleansed of sin and protected from transgression’s rule of bondage (Psa. 19:12-13). In faith, David petitions God for His cleansing and protection from sin’s guilt and power. Then, he closes this great psalm with a prayer that his words and thoughts would be acceptable to God, in whom he trusted (Psa. 19:14).

Like David, we should let God’s creation teach us. As if the sun, moon and stars are speaking to us, we hear them declare God’s majestic glory and matchless precision and power (Psa. 19:1-6).

Like David, we should desire and value God’s word more than “much fine gold” (19:10). More desirable than honey, its sweetness assures us that in keeping His word “there is great reward” (Psa. 19:11).

God has revealed Himself to us. His creation declares His presence and fullness of power: “He gives to all life, breath and all things” and “in Him we live and move and have our being” (Acts 17:25, 28). His word declares His will, compelling the wise to hear and obey Him: “See that you do not refuse Him who speaks” (Heb. 12:25).

It is left up to us to open our eyes to see the declarations of God’s power in His creation and to open our hearts to believe and obey God’s commands given in His word. May we each declare His glory and live humbly before Him. Let us turn from every sin and seek His forgiveness wherever sin is found (Psa. 19:13). Let us declare loyalty to God by fully obeying His word from the heart (Psa. 19:11, 14). 


God Has Spoken

Joe R. Price

Many people believe God directly speaks to them. Some claim to be prophets. But, most are common folks who have had some experience they attribute to direct, divine communication; a wisp of the clouds, a deep yearning  within during an intense moment of joy or despair – all these and more are interpreted as God’s voice – comforting, warning or encouraging the soul.

God Speaks

     It does little good to deny an event really happened in the life of the person claiming to have heard the voice of God. Something happened. It is a subjective event and real to the person absorbed in the experience. The real question is this: Was the event truly God speaking to the person? Or, are there other explanations for the event that do not contradict the Scriptures? You see, God’s word teaches God does not directly speak to people today – no matter how much one may think He has. Direct revelation has ended.

     Neither is the question that of whether God speaks to mankind at all. God has both spoken to men in the past and He speaks to us today according to Hebrews 1:1-2. The passage explains how. In past times God “spoke to the fathers by the prophets” (Heb. 1:1). For example, God’s prophet Jeremiah said, “Hear the word which the Lord speaks to you, O house of Israel. Thus says the Lord” (Jer. 10:1-2). “Prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit” (2 Pet. 1:21).

How God Speaks to You

     What about today? Doesn’t God speak to us today? Yes, God “has in these last days spoken to us by His Son” (Heb. 1:2). God speaks to us now by the words of His Son Jesus. The Father said, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him” (Matt. 17:5). Jesus said His words are the words of the Father:

He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him – the word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day. For I have not spoken on my own authority, but the Father who sent Me gave Me a command, what I should say and what I should speak. And I know that His command is everlasting life. Therefore, whatever I speak, just as the Father has told Me, so I speak” (Jno. 12:48-50).

     Jesus sent His apostles into the world with His word of life just as the Father sent Jesus into the world with heaven’s word of everlasting life (Jno. 20:21). Christ’s apostles spoke and wrote His commands (1 Cor. 14:37). We are hearing Jesus when we hear them (Matt. 10:40; Jno. 13:20). God speaks to us today “by His Son” through the inspired Scriptures left by His apostles and prophets.

     We are warned not to “refuse Him who speaks” (Heb. 12:25). We must carefully follow the word of God, the “words of faith”, the “good doctrine” that was preached by the apostles (2 Tim. 3:10; 1 Tim. 4:5-6). Our ears must be open to listening to God by letting Him teach us with His Scriptures. “He who has ears to hear, let him hear!” and, “take heed how you hear” apply to each one of us (Lk. 8:8, 18; Acts 17:11-12).

How God is Not Speaking to You

     1) God is not speaking to you through living apostles and prophets. Although many trust in “living apostles and prophets” to guide them, the New Testament teaches the time of prophecy ended when the revelation of the gospel was complete (1 Cor. 13:8-10). God speaks today through the living word that was proclaimed by Christ’s apostles and prophets (Eph. 4:11-12; 1 Pet. 1:22-25; Heb. 4:12). Friend, if you are listening to a so-called “living prophet” instead of the living word of God (the Bible), you are not yet listening to God.

     2) God is not speaking to you through those who have died. Death not only ends one’s earthly experiences but also one’s participation in earthly events (Eccl. 9:5-6). God forbade Israel from seeking knowledge from mediums and others who claimed to “call up the dead” (Deut. 18:9-14). The dead do not speak to the living, either directly or through a medium; “these things are an abomination to the Lord” (Deut. 18:12). God does not speak to us through dead people.

     3) God is not sending direct messages to your heart apart from His Scriptures. There is no “instant messaging” from heaven to the human heart through feelings or a still small voice. What Scripture teaches we should expect such a thing today? What passage tells Christians to expect God to speak to us in a way other than “by His Son” in the Scriptures? If you believe God is speaking to your heart apart from the inspired Scriptures you have been deluded by the devil’s lie (2 Ths. 2:9-12).

     God speaks to us with a word that He has fully revealed, confirmed and inspired (Heb. 2:1-4). All the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are in Christ and available to you and the whole world in the Scriptures (Col. 2:2-3, 10; 2 Pet. 1:3-4).

     Listen to God speak to you, not by mistaking an experience for a direct message from heaven. Rather, listen to God by drinking deeply from His Scriptures, His word. There you will hear Christ speak; there you will learn of Him (Eph. 4:20-21; Matt. 11:28-30).  


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

The Trials of Faith

Scripture Reading:  John 16:1-4

1.  The hour of trial tests our faith: Purifies or destroys, 1 Pet. 1:6-9.
2.  The overconfidence of pride and self-righteousness fails to see the danger inherent in trials, so it fails to trust God, 1 Cor. 10:12.
3.  Faith sees the benefit of trials in spite of present pain, and so relies on God, Jas. 1:2-4.
4.  Neglectful, apathetic faith fails to see the benefit of trials and leads to discouragement and doubt when they come, cf. Heb. 12:4-6.


  A.  Jesus was Acquainted with Grief during His Life, Lk. 9:58; 11:53-54.
  B. Jesus was Acquainted with Grief in His Suffering (Acts 1:3; Lk. 9:22); 1 Pet. 2:20-24; 2 Ths. 1:6-7; Rev. 14:12-13.

II. JESUS PROMISED TRIALS BECAUSE OF OUR FAITH, Jno. 16:33, 1-4; 15:18-21 (Matt. 26:38-46).

  A. The Trials of Keeping Right Priorities, Mk. 10:29-31 (Matt. 6:33-34).
    1.  Setting the priority of faith necessitates (demands) sacrifice, 10:28-29; Gal. 2:20.
    2.  Setting the priority of faith necessitates (demands) evaluating true riches, Mk. 10:23-28; 1 Tim. 6:6-10.

  B.  The Trials of Persecution, 1 Pet. 3:13-14; Acts 4:18-20; 21:13-14

  C. The Trials of Perseverance, Matt. 10:21-22 (24:12-13); Gal. 6:9; 1 Cor. 16:13.


1.  We are more than conquerors through Him who loved us, Rom. 8:35-37.
2.  Christ is our Defender (Rom. 8:38-39). He has paved the trail through the dark shadows of trials and trouble so that our way to the Father is clear, Heb. 2:10; 12:2.


(Current events in the light of Scripture)

Forty Years Later
Joe R. Price

Abortion is the deliberate ending of innocent life; abortion is murder. Sanctioned by federal law for the past forty years, there have been approximately 55 million abortions performed in America since Roe v. Wade legalized it in January, 1973. That is 55 million babies murdered in the last forty years. 55 million lives ended, 55 million first breaths never drawn, 55 million individuals never to laugh, to dream, to live – 55 million unique, new lives prevented from growing inside and outside of their mothers’ bodies.

     According to a poll published this week, 54% of Americans say abortion should be legal always or most of the time. 35% say it should be illegal, with exceptions, and 9% say abortion should always be illegal, without exception. Count me as a 9-percenter. Who has the power to give and to take life, but God only?

     For too long the proponents of abortion have framed the subject of abortion as one of women’s rights:

President Barack Obama issued a statement reaffirming the decision’s commitment to “reproductive freedom” and the principle that “government should not intrude on our most private family matters, and women should be able to make their own choices about their bodies and their health care” (“40 years after Roe v. Wade, abortion foes march on”, John Hanna, AP, San Francisco Chronicle).

     What about the rights of the unborn child? Who has the “freedom” to take away its life? Legalized sin is still sin. The life of the unborn ought to be protected by governments and individuals. 40 years after Roe the cry of the children is still heard. Abortion is a reproach upon America. Killing one innocent life does not escape God’s eyes, much less 55 million (Gen. 4:10). Their blood cries out to God, and He will have His vengeance. Pray for America. “Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people” (Prov. 14:34).


Created by Chuck Sibbing, last updated.  01/27/2013

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