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


Volume 17, Number 48

Published by
Mt. Baker
church of Christ

1860 Mt. Baker HWY
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:

Let Brotherly Love Continue
Joe R. Price

God expects Christians to “let brotherly love continue” (Heb. 13:1). Brotherly love (philadelphia) is the warm affection, fond kindness that results from the relational closeness Christians share as siblings in the family of God (1 Jno. 3:1; Gal. 4:5-6).  We are joint-heirs of God through Christ (Gal. 4:7). Having been born again, we are to sincerely love each other (1 Pet. 1:22). Therefore, we must...

Let brotherly love continue during times of joy. "Rejoice with those who rejoice" (Rom. 12:15). "That's easy", you say. Not necessarily. It might be harder than you think. Do we become envious when someone among us prospers, even coveting their blessing? Instead of rejoicing we frown, form evil suspicions and become distant from the very one with whom we ought to share joy. The next time someone is blessed, let brotherly love rule and rejoice with them.

Let brotherly love continue during times of sorrow. "Weep with those who weep" (Rom. 12:15). "No problem", you say. But, who wants to cry? "I have my own set of problems - why should I take on someone else's?" Because of brotherly love. You may never know the good you do by sharing a Christian's sadness. But, the Lord knows, and by it you show brotherly love to your brother or sister.

Let brotherly love continue during struggles with sin. Sin will overtake some, and when it does they need our help (Gal. 6:1-2). True, when a Christian is overtaken in sin he or she must be willing to accept the help we offer. By cultivating brotherly love we are in a better position to help when one is overtaken by sin.

Let brotherly love continue during moments of disagreement. Abram urged Lot, "Please let there be no strife between you and me, and between my herdsmen and your herdsmen; for we are brethren" (Gen. 13:8). When personal disagreements arise, overcome them through the warm affection of our shared relationship in Christ. If two sisters in Christ could be "of the same mind in the Lord" through the urging of the apostle and the help of fellow Christians, so can we (Phil. 4:2-3).

Brotherly love grows out of the benevolent goodwill of agape: "But concerning brotherly love (philadelphia) you have no need that I should write to you, for you yourselves are taught by God to love (agapao) one another..." (1 Thess. 4:9) May we ever and always "love as brethren" should (1 Pet. 3:8). 


The Reverent Person
Joe R. Price

Happy is the man who is always reverent, But he who hardens his heart will fall into calamity.” (Proverbs 28:14, NKJV)

The person who fears God obtains the blessings of knowledge, wisdom, honor and God's protection (Prov. 1:7; 9:10; 22:4; 29:25). Happy (fortunate, blessed) is such a man. In contrast, great loss and misfortune surely comes to the person who hardens his heart against God.

Reverence toward God means to regard Him with respect and  dreadful awe, to fear Him and treat Him as holy by our words and actions (Psa. 89:7; 111:9; Lev. 10:3).

Jesus teaches us to fear God instead of people (Matt. 10:28). That means we hold God in honor and respect by obeying Him. To do otherwise leads to our eternal ruin.

Live a reverent life (1 Tim. 2:2). Reverence is a matter of the heart, as today's proverb states. Developing a heart of reverence for God translates into a life that pleases Him (2 Cor. 5:9).

Respect for authority (1 Tim. 3:4). The elders' children show respect to their father by obeying his rule. Reverence does not murmur and complain when it obeys. Just as children are to obey their parents with dignity, we reverently obey God with respect, not complaint.

Deacons must be reverent (1 Tim. 3:8). One who serves must, of necessity, be characterized by respectful submission to authority. Deacons who serve the church well do so because of the reverence they have toward God and His church.

Older men must be reverent (Titus 2:2). Growing older is not a license to be rude, grumpy and hurtful in word and deed. Titus the evangelist was to charge the older men in the church to show reverence until the end of their days. According to verse 1, this is "proper for sound doctrine".

Older women are to be reverent in behavior (Titus 2:2). In the same manner, older women are to behave out of a fear of God. Whether in the home toward their husbands, toward their brethren are amongst those in the world, godly women show respect for God in how they behave toward others.

Serve God with reverence (Heb. 12:28). God deserves to be served with honor and piety. The only service He will accept is that which honors His greatness. We cannot blaspheme God by word or deed and please Him. 


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

Coming and Going

Scripture Reading:  John 8:2-12

In John 8:2-11, Jesus averted an unrighteous judgment against a sinner and against Himself.

I. SOME CAME TO JESUS TO LEARN FROM HIM, Jno. 8:2; Matt. 11:28-30.

  A. We Must Come to Jesus with Open, Ready Hearts, Acts 2:22, 37-41; Rev. 22:17 (Isa. 55:1-3); Acts 17:11-12; Acts 10:33.
  B. Commit Ourselves to Listening to Christ's Teaching.


  A. Their Minds are Made Up Ahead of Time, cf. Jno. 7:51 (Isa. 65:1-5).
  B. Proof-texting v. Proof from the Text, 1 Thess. 5:21-22; Jno. 8:4-5 (cf. Lev 20:10; Deut. 22:22; 17:6-7).


  A. Some Go Away from Jesus, Refusing to Address their Own Sin. Jno. 8:7; Gal. 6:4-5; Acts 8:24 (Simon); 24:24-25 (Felix).


  A. Jesus Came to Save the Lost, and He did that Day, Jno. 3:17; 8:11; Rom. 6:1; Heb. 10:26-27.
  B. Follow Jesus, the Light of the World, so that the Darkness of Sin will not Overwhelm You, Jno. 8:12; 12:35-36.


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

Turning Order into Chaos (Why Gender Matters)  Part 1

Scripture Reading:  Proverbs 3:1-8

1. God created gender identity and distinction, complimenting and completing male with female, Gen. 2:18. New vocabulary:
  -Transgender, gender identity, gender reassignment, intersex.

2. The transgender subculture is becoming mainstream: Facebook, Bruce Jenner, LGBT Pride Month (Col. 2:8).


  A. We Look to Genesis to Understand, Gen. 1:27; Gen. 2:18, 23-24; Matt. 19:4-5.
  B. However, the Transgender Agenda Seeks to Supplant this Truth.


  A. Because God Created Gender; Man does not Control it, Gen. 1:27; cf. Jer. 13:23.
  B. Some of the Effects of Transgenderism.
    1. Minimizes/Disregards God-given gender and roles, cf. Deut. 22:5; 1 Cor. 11:14-15.
    2. Makes provisions for and promotes the sin of homosexuality, Lev. 18:22; Rom. 13:14.
    3. Displays discontent, lack of self-control, self-defined living and even lustful choices, cf. Phil. 4:11; Rom. 1:24-25.
    4. Dishonors God-ordained marriage and the home, Gen. 2:23-24; Heb. 13:4 (Eph. 6:2).


  A. “People are born that way.”
  B. "God looks at the heart" (1 Sam. 16:7).
  C. “We are Just Accommodating what we Already are on the Inside.” Prov. 23:7; 3:1-8; Eph. 4:17-24 (Ezek. 18:31-32: Get yourself a new heart and a new spirit) - Repentance.
  D. Summary of Bible v. Transgenderism.


(Current events in the light of Scripture)

When People Lose their Way
Joe R. Price

Just about everyone by now has heard about Bruce Jenner. (The Sunday night lesson will address transgender and the Bible.) I want to use this space to remind us what the Bible teaches us to do when someone loses their way in sin. And clearly, Jenner has lost his way. He now believes he is a female because he has made external physical changes and internal emotional decisions. The even greater loss is that he continues to live in sin, lost and away from God.

When someone loses their way in sin, we remember that God loves them. God's love for the lost is defined by the death of His Son on the cross (Jno. 3:16). God loves each of us this way, because all of us have sinned (Rom. 3:23). Christians have been forgiven, so it behooves us to remember that God wants to forgive those who have lost their way in sin. God's love of them does not mean God overlooks their sin. This is a grave mistake made by many. (If He does, why did Jesus die?) Remember, the wages of sin is death - God said that, too (Rom. 6:23). Those lost in sin need saving, and the gospel of Jesus is the only way for them to be saved from their sin (Acts 4:12; Rom. 1:16).

When someone loses their way in sin, we remember that love corrects them. Parents lovingly correct their children, and God corrects us when we choose to disobey Him (Heb. 12:5-11). That is what love does. Sin must be identified so it can be corrected according to God's truth. By identifying sin and showing God's correction for it, we are acting in harmony with God's love. It is not a vindictive desire to hurt the sinner that compels us to call sinners back to the truth of the gospel. We are not your enemy when we tell you the truth (Gal. 4:16).

When someone loses their way in sin, they should remember there is a way back to God. The prodigal son came to himself and in repentance returned to his father, who joyfully received him (Lk. 15:17-24). God is ready to receive every single sinner who repents (Lk. 15:7, 10). All is not lost. You still have the opportunity to be forgiven by God and live with Him now and forever (2 Pet. 3:9).

Yes, many have lost their way. Perhaps you have, too. Jesus is the way home (Jno. 14:6). Always remember that. 


Created by Chuck Sibbing, last updated.  06/14/2015

The Spirit's Sword is a free, weekly publication of the Mt. Baker church of Christ, Bellingham, WA
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