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


Volume 16, Number 41

Published by
Mt. Baker
church of Christ

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Mailing Address:

       P.O. Box 30821
Bellingham, WA 98228
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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:

"You're a Hypocrite!"

Joe R. Price

The charge of hypocrisy against Christians is routinely heard from those intent on discrediting the gospel of Christ and His disciples. Yes, sometimes the charge is deserved. Sometimes Christians are hypocrites. Jesus leveled this charge against some Jewish religious leaders who demanded conformity to their religious traditions while excusing disobedience to the commandment of God (Mk. 7:1-13). He provided the evidence that exposed their sin, which greatly offended them (Matt. 15:12). We cannot be so blind as to think hypocrisy is no longer a sin that tempts Christians or that some actually yield to it. For this reason, the apostle Peter said to lay aside all hypocrisies (1 Pet. 2:1).

At the same time, the charge of hypocrisy can be a smoke screen to divert attention away from the sin and error one is unwilling to face in his or her life. It is easier to say “you’re a hypocrite” whenever a Christian commits a sin than to take personal responsibility for one’s own failings. Beware: My hypocrisy does not approve your sin. Nor does committing one sin automatically mean one is a hypocrite.

Being a hypocrite is not the same as a Christian sinning from time to time. Hypocrisy is pretending to be what one is not; like an actor, it is playing a role to hide what is real. It pretends to be what it is not. There is a huge difference between a Christian who yields to temptation but is eager to repent, confess it to the Lord and avoid the same sin in the future, and the Christian who feigns righteousness while refusing to follow God’s word. Christians who “walk in the light” “practice the truth” and do not habitually sin. When they commit sin, they remedy it by Christ’s word (1 Jno. 1:6-2:1). Not the hypocrite.

A hypocrite pretends to be what he is not. He feigns righteousness while practicing sin (1 Jno. 3:4; 5:17). He does not practice what he preaches, while faithful Christians make it their aim to conform to the image of the Son (Matt. 23:3; Rom. 8:29). It is wrong to charge “hypocrisy” any time a Christian sins. Hypocrisy is spiritual pretense. To say a Christian is a hypocrite if he sins is to suggest Christians must be sinlessly perfect (otherwise, they are hypocrites). That is patently false (1 Jno. 1:9; 2:1-2; Jas. 5:16).

The real hypocrite will not examine himself and objects to being examined by others (2 Cor. 5:10). Faithful Christians welcome examination and correction from others because they want to be right with God. They will correct their sin when it is pointed out to them. But the hypocrite cannot abide the scrutiny of God’s word. Truth exposes the hypocrite’s pretense and a heart is far from God (Matt. 15:8). 


When Did Jesus Pray?

Jerry Fite

Jesus, from the beginning of His ministry to His last breath on the cross, was a man of prayer. At His baptism, He prayed to His Father in heaven, and “the heaven was opened, and the Holy Spirit descended in a bodily form, as a dove upon Him, and a voice came out of heaven, Thou art my beloved Son: in thee I am well pleased” (Luke 3:21-22). Jesus came to do the will of His Father in heaven, so it is only fitting as He began His ministry he would be praying connecting His will to the Father’s will (cf. John 5:30). He immediately received miraculous confirmation of a pleased Father in heaven. Complying with God’s will led Jesus to the cross where Jesus expressed in prayer the heavy weight He felt in being sacrificed for man’s sins, and He beseeched in prayerful trust for His Father to receive His spirit as He gave His last breath (Mark 15:34, Luke 23:46).

Jesus sought to be alone with His heavenly Father in prayer. With the word spreading concerning His miraculous power, multitudes sought to hear Him and be healed. “But He withdrew Himself in the deserts, and prayed” (Luke 5:16). Feeling the pressure of duty, and wanting to just “get away”, when was the last time it drove you to prayer, instead of planning a “getaway weekend” or “vacation”? When was the last time you separated from the crowd and had prayer with close family members? Jesus separated from the multitudes to pray with His disciples (Luke 9:18).

Jesus prayed when He faced an important decision. Before choosing the twelve apostles from His many disciples, Jesus “went out into the mountain to pray; and He continued all night in prayer to God” (Luke 6:12). These apostles would be men given to Jesus by His Father (John 17:6). Apparently, answered prayer was behind His being able the next day to choose those men He named as apostles (Luke 6:13-16). Do we spend much time with God in prayer before we make important decisions as to who we will marry, or the wisdom of taking the new job offering?

Jesus took time to offer up “thanksgiving” to God. No, I am not speaking of merely of the times He gave thanks for the food before Him, which He did consistently (John 6:11, Matt. 15:36), but when He saw God’s wisdom being worked out in the seventy He had sent out, rejoicing, he said, “I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou didst hide these things from the wise and understanding, and didst reveal them unto babes: yea, Father; for so it was well-pleasing in thy sight” (Luke 10:21). When was the last time you spoke to God, not asking for something, but just thanking Him for His eternal plan of salvation in Christ which was the wisest of the world could never have authored, but the simplest of men can know?

Jesus interceded in prayer on behalf of others at critical times. He prayed for Peter, that his “faith” would “not fail” (Luke 22:32). Jesus sought God’s help through prayer to keep others spiritually strong. Do you prayer for other’s spiritual strength? May we, like Jesus, pray regularly.

-Glad Tidings
(Vol. XXIII, No. 42, Oct. 20, 2013)


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

What God Values

Scripture Reading:  Proverbs 6:16-19

Prov. 6:16-19 describes the values of God in reverse, using the body as a memory device.


I. EYES OF HUMILITY, Prov. 6:17.

  A. Pride Centers upon Self and Prevents a Relationship with God, Prov. 21:2; 30:11-14.
  B. Humility Centers upon God, Prov. 3:5-7.

II. A TONGUE OF TRUTH, Prov. 6:17; 12:22

  A. The Curse of Deception, Jno. 8:44-45.
  B. The Reward of Truth, Prov. 23:23; 11:3; Eph. 4:15; 1 Pet. 1:22-23.


  A. Hands that Shed Innocent Blood, Matt. 23:14; Prov. 18:9.
  B. Honest Labor is a Tribute to Man and to God, 1 Ths. 4:11-12; 1 Tim. 5:8.

IV. A GOOD HEART, Prov. 6:18 (11:20).

  A. Wicked Hearts Bring Destruction, Gen. 6:5; Mk. 7:21-23; Jas. 4:8; Phil. 4:8.
  B. Give Your Heart to God, Prov. 23:26; 4:23; Matt. 5:8 (26:39).

V. FEET OF CAUTION, Prov. 6:18.

  A. Feet that Sense Danger and Stay Clear of Trouble, Prov. 1:15-16; Eph. 5:15.
  B. Feet that Flee Sin and its Temptations Instead of Running to it, 2 Tim. 2:22.


  A. False Witness Harms, Matt. 26:59.
  B. We must Advocate Justice and Show Mercy, Prov. 3:3-4; 14:31; 21:15; Mic. 6:6.


  A. Instigators of Strife: Gossip, Anger, Meanness, Hate and Pride, Prov. 10:12
  B. Be Peacemakers, Matt. 5:9.


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

Put Lust to Death

Scripture Reading:  1 Thessalonians 4:1-8

1. The gospel has the power to bring every thought into submission in order to obey Christ, 2 Cor. 10:3-5.
2. This is vital because we must battle intense desires that entice us to sin against God, Jas. 1:14; Rom. 6:12.


-epithumia: Morally neutral word, of any strong desire, longing, craving. Context of usage explains the nature of the desire, Lk. 16:21; 1 Cor. 10:6.
  A. Intensely Pure Desire, Lk. 22:15; Phil. 1:23; 1 Ths. 2:17.
  B. Sinful Desires of the Flesh and of the Mind, Eph. 2:3; Matt. 5:28.
    1. Deceitful lusts, Eph. 4:22 (19).
    2. Worldly, Tit. 2:12; 1 Jno. 2:16-17.
    3. Corrupting, 2 Pet. 1:4.
    4. Fleshly lusts attack the soul, 1 Pet. 2:11.
  C. Lust must be Put to Death, Col. 3:5; Rom. 1:24; 1 Ths. 4:3-4.

II. HOW TO PUT LUST TO DEATH (Col. 3:5; Gal. 5:24).

  A. Walk in the Spirit, Gal. 5:16-26.
  B. Set Your Mind on the Things of the Spirit), Rom. 8:5-9; Col. 3:1.
  C. Put God’s Word in Your Heart as Your Absolute Standard, Psa. 119:9-11; Jas. 4:8.
  D. Flee / Abstain from Lusts, 2 Tim. 2:22; 1 Pet. 2:11; 1 Cor. 10:12-13.
  E. Replace Lust for Sin with Pure Thinking and Godly Conduct, Phil. 4:8-9; 1 Pet. 2:11-12; 2 Cor. 10:5.


1. The battle against lust can be won through faith, 1 Jno. 5:4.
2. Desire the good things of God and flee every enticement of sinful lusts.


(Current events in the light of Scripture)

Big Mouth Billy Bass
Joe R. Price

You’ve seen them, haven’t you? (You may even have one.) The big mouth bass on a plaque that sings, moves its head and waves its tail when it detects motion; Big Mouth Billy Bass. Recently Big Mouth Billy frightened the would-be thief that broke into the Hooked on Fishing bait shop in Rochester, Minnesota. (“Big Mouth Billy Bass scares off would-be burglar”, Who would have thought a dead fish on the wall could be a useful security system?!

Jesus illustrated his lesson on spiritual vigilance and readiness for His return with a homeowner and a thief in Matthew 24:42-44. If the homeowner knew when the thief would come to break into his house he would be waiting to prevent the intrusion. But, a thief comes without warning, so the homeowner must constantly be watchful.

So it is with the return of the Son of Man. We know Jesus will return, but we do not know when. Christians must constantly be ready.

Jesus teaches us to be ready by being “a faithful and wise servant” (Matt. 24:45-47). Like this good servant, Christians must be doing the Master’s will out of duty, respect and faith in the goodwill of the Master. This servant will be blessed when his Master comes.

The “evil servant” forgets that the Lord may come at any time (Matt. 24:48-51). He foolishly thinks he can predict when the Master will return and begins to sorely treat his fellow servants. Christians who leave their first love for the things of the world fall after the same example of unfaithfulness and disobedience. They will not be ready when the Lord returns. Their unfaithfulness will cost them their souls, forever punished in hell.

Are you ready for the Lord to come? Big Mouth Billy Bass will not prevent his return. Watch and be ready. 


Created by Chuck Sibbing, last updated.  02/10/2014

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