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


Volume 18, Number 41

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:

What Must I Do To Be Saved?

Joe R. Price

Every person’s most essential need is the salvation of his soul from sin. Our soul is our most valuable possession (Matt. 16:26). The all important question, "What must I do to be saved?," is asked three times in the New Testament (Acts 2:37; 9:6; 16:30). The Bible answer is clear, compelling believers to obey and be saved. Let God’s word show you how to be saved. Then, obey His word and be saved from your sins.


   -Violation of God’s law, 1 John 3:4; 5:17; James 4:17
   -Separates man from God, Isaiah 59:1-2
   -Causes spiritual death, Romans 3:23; 6:23

  • SALVATION FROM SIN IS OFFERED TO ALL PEOPLE, Acts 10:34-35; Romans 1:16-17; 10:11-13


   -Loved us even in our sin against Him, John 3:16
   -Sent His Son, Jesus Christ, to die for us, Romans 5:6-9
   -This is God’s grace toward mankind, Ephesians 2:1-8


   -HEAR the gospel of Christ, Mark 16:15; John 6:44-45; Romans 10:17
      1)  In God, Hebrews 11:6
      2)  The gospel (good news) of Jesus Christ, Mark 16:16; John 8:24; Acts 16:30-31
   -REPENT of sins, Luke 13:3-5; Acts 2:38; 17:30; Romans 2:4
   -CONFESS faith in Christ, Romans 10:9-10
   -BE BAPTIZED, Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; 22:16; Galatians 3:27; 1 Peter 3:21


   -Sins are removed, washed away; sinner is saved, Acts 2:38; 1 Peter 3:21
   -One becomes a Christian and is added to the church by the Lord, Acts 11:26; 2:47


   -Live faithfully by following Christ’s word, Matthew 7:21-23; Romans 6:17-18; 12:1-2; Revelation 2:10
Both God and man have a part in the salvation (Eph. 2:8-10; Matt. 7:24-27). God has done His part. He is ready to save you. Now, it is up to you. Obey Him in faith, and be saved from your sins. 


The Sin of Complaining
Joe R. Price

It seems as if we think it is our right and privilege to complain. We complain about the weather. We complain about government and politicians. We complain about our jobs, our homes, our spouses, our children, our parents...our lives. And, what does all that complaining get us? Oh, perhaps a few moments of satisfaction that we have “let off some steam” and “spoken our mind” on the matter. But, complaining says more about us than it does about our circumstances.

Complaining was one of the sins of Israel in the wilderness. They complained about being freed from slavery, about what to drink, what to eat and what God wanted them to do (Exo. 14:11; 15:24; 16:2, 8; 17:3; Num. 11:1-6; Deut. 1:26-27). It is not hard to see Israel’s lack of faith in God, their lack of thankfulness for His great blessings, and their lack of contentment in the selfish, self-centered whining that incessantly droned from their lips. God rebuked them and punished them for grumbling against Him (Num. 11:18-20, 31-34; Deut. 1:26-36).  Consider some of the reasons complaining is such a sin against God.

Misplaced focus. When you boil it down, isn’t complaining evidence that we are greedy for what we do not have? Covetousness is the opponent of contentment, according to Hebrews 13:5: “Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have...” Staying focused on the true purpose of our lives is key to contentment. When we remember life is about fearing God and keeping His commandments, our focus turns away from ourselves (Eccl. 12:13). Our devotion must grow toward the Lord and away from selfishly moaning and groaning about our present situation. How can we ever “rejoice always” when we are always complaining about someone or something (1 Thess. 5:16)? How can we give thanks “in everything” when our lack of contentment is on display with every complaint we speak (1 Thess. 5:18)?

Missing faith. Israel’s murmuring and complaining showed they “did not believe the Lord” (Deut. 1:32). Without question, complaining over our lot in life shows we lack trust in God and His overriding care for us. Murmuring  betrays our distraction away from full faith in our heavenly Father to know and provide our needs (Matt. 6:25-34). Complaining shows we have confused what we “want” with what we “need” (Matt. 6:32). So, we start trusting ourselves to supply our wants, and leave God out of the picture. It soon becomes too hard to please God; we are too busy trying to please ourselves! Such a lack of faith will not be rewarded by God.

Mistaken outlook. Israel kept looking back to Egypt instead of ahead to God’s promises (Num. 11:5; 14:1-10). The “good old days” convince many to complain about their present circumstances. Living in the past, they miss their present blessings and forfeit their future hope. If that describes you, set spiritual goals before your eyes (Heb. 12:1-2). Press forward to the upward call of heaven, not the temporal call of self-devotion and selfish satisfactions. Be sure your outlook on life is centered on God, not on yourself (Col. 3:1-4). When we live for heaven rather than earth, complaints give way to praise and gratitude. 


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

"Your Own Side" v. God's Side

Scripture Reading:  Luke 9:21-26

1. Modern psychology says you must “be on your own side;” “be for yourself.”
2. We need a healthy level of “self-criticism,” 2 Cor. 13:5; 1 Cor. 11:31.
3. Self-confidence can be misplaced, Lk. 18:9; Rom. 2:17-20, 24.
4. World says your purpose in life is to discover your own happiness. cf. Solomon, Eccl. 2:10-11
5. Bible says be on God’s side by surrendering to Him, Matt. 11:28-30; Jno. 14:26-28; 16:22, 33.


  A. “Means You Care about Yourself.” Phil. 2:4; 1 Cor. 13:5 (love does not seek its own)
  B. Who is on the Lord’s Side? Exo. 32:26


  -Feelings seem right, Prov. 14:12
  -Can easily lie to self, Psa. 14:1; 5:9
  -Heart deceives, Jer. 17:5, 9
  -All is vanity, Eccl. 2:22-23
  -Fill up desires, but never satisfied, Heb. 11:25; 1 Jno. 2:17
  Lose your life, Lk. 9:24

      GOD’S SIDE
  -God is right, Isa. 45:19
  -God’s word is truth, Jno. 17:17
  -God is trustworthy, Jer. 17:7
  -Joy, peace, contentment, Phil. 4:4-8
  -Sacrifice for fulfillment, Mk. 10:28-31
  -Save your life, Lk. 9:23-24

You are important, you are valuable to God, Jno. 3:16. But, you are not more important than God and His will for you, Lk. 9:23, 24-26.


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

We Can Understand MDR

Scripture Reading:  2 Corinthians 11:1-5

1. Can we understand the doctrine of Christ on baptism? On MDR? Yes! Eph. 3:3-4; 5:17; 2 Tim. 2:15; 2 Pet. 3:16-18; 2 Tim. 3:16-17; 2 Jno. 9
2. Warned against corruption of the “simplicity” (soundness) that is in Christ, 2 Cor. 11:3-4.
3. Some Evangelicals say baptism is “more difficult” and “less clear” than other topics.
4. Some brethren say MDR is “more difficult” and “less clear.”  Agree to disagree (Rom. 14).




Rom. 6:3-4   
Gal. 3:27
1 Pet. 3:21



Matt. 19:4-6
1 Cor. 7:10-11
Heb. 13:4

Matt. 28:18-19
Mk. 16:16
Acts 2:37-38
8:36-37; 18:8



Gen. 2:18, 24
Matt. 19:4-5, 9
Heb. 13:4
1 Cor. 7:27-28

Mk. 16:16
Acts 2:38
Acts 22:161
Pet. 3:21



Rom. 7:2-3
1 Cor. 7:27, 39
Matt. 19:9, 5:32

Jno. 3:23      
Acts 8:38
Rom. 6:4
Col. 2:12



Matt. 19:6, 9       
Rom. 7:2-3
1 Cor. 7:10-15

Acts 2:37-8, 40 Acts 8:36-37
Rom. 10:9-10
Acts 22:16



Matt. 19:9
Rom. 7:2-3
1 Cor. 7:25-28

1. We do not need a creed to determine soundness; The Bible is enough, 2 Tim. 1:13; Gal. 1:6-9.
2. Must devote ourselves to the careful study of God’s word, then carefully follow it, 2 Tim. 3:10.
3. Repent of every sinful marriage; repudiate every false doctrine.


(Current events in the light of Scripture)

Bad Behavior
Joe R. Price

The political rhetoric and vitriol between presidential candidates is heating up as we head into summer. Presidential political rallies are being marked by violence and attacks by opponents. Yesterday in San Jose, CA, insults were hurled, punches flew and blood flowed. One woman was pelted with eggs for showing her support for Donald Trump (“Ugly, bloody scenes in San Jose as protesters attack Trump supporters outside rally,” Sean Sullivan and Michael E. Miller, The Washington Post).

Where is common decency and respect for others? Many have lost the ability to disagree in an agreeable way (if they ever had). This inability is wreaking havoc throughout our society. People turn to violence to settle disputes (consider the murder rates in cities like Chicago). Road rage continues to show angry, impulsive responses that lead to tragedy. Politicians vie for our votes by insulting and demeaning each other. Some of their followers attack the opposition (verbally, and in some cases, violently). Truly, there is no love for one’s neighbors in such ungodly conduct (Matt. 22:39; Rom. 13:8-10).

Bad behavior begets bad behavior. Christians can get caught up in sinful emotions and bad behavior just as easily as anyone else. God’s law to Israel contains helpful insight that warns us of this danger: “You shall not circulate a false report. Do not put your hand with the wicked to be an unrighteous witness. You shall not follow a crowd to do evil; nor shall you testify in a dispute so as to turn aside after many to pervert justice” (Exo. 23:1-2). Heed these warnings: 

  • Do not circulate a false report. Be careful what you “retweet” or “share” on Twitter and Facebook is true.

  • Do not agree with false reports. Your good reputation is damaged when you support those who spread lies.

  • Do not run with the crowd to do evil. Think for yourself and follow God’s will, not the will of the mob.

  • Do not advance injustice. Treat others with respect, courtesy, and the restraint of godliness.


Created by Chuck Sibbing, last updated.  06/07/2016

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