Articles (Page 16)

Articles (Page 16)

THE WHY SERIES – WHY DOES THE CHURCH OF CHRIST BELIEVE THAT MIRACULOUS GIFTS NO LONGER EXIST?

It is undeniable that miraculous gifts—gifts such as the ability to heal the sick, work miracles, prophesy, discern spirits, speak in tongues, and interpret tongues (1 Corinthians 12:7-10)—were present in the early church (Acts 2:1-12; 3:6-7; 5:12-16; 8:5-24; 9:32-42; 10:44-48; 11:27-28; 13:1-12; 14:8-10; 16:16-18; 19:1-7; 20:9-11; 21:10-11). But does their existence in the first century necessitate their existence today? Must a church that seeks to emulate the first century church advocate the presence of miraculous gifts today? To answer this question…

LOOPHOLE HUNTERS – An Introduction

The show “House Hunters,” which premiered on HGTV in 1999, has produced over 1,700 episodes and spawned over a dozen “spinoff” shows in its 18-year run. Some of these recent spinoff shows include “House Hunters: RV Edition,” “Houseboat Hunters,” “Island Hunters,” and even “Tiny House Hunters.” Question: Does this mean that normal-sized people are looking for tiny houses, or are tiny people looking for normal-sized houses? Oh, who am I kidding; I would probably watch it either way. According to a recent statistic,…

LOOPHOLE HUNTERS – Episode One

Last week, we came face-to-face with the unfortunate truth that we, as God’s people, are often guilty of reducing His Word into mere “external observances.” We were forced to admit that we are often best known for turning the Bible into some kind of “checklist,” denying its real power (2 Tim. 3:5). We have an undeniably long history of taking God’s teachings, robbing them of their rich depth, and limiting their potential to change our lives from the inside out.…

THE WHY SERIES – WHY DOES THE CHURCH OF CHRIST BELIEVE THAT SALVATION CAN BE LOST?

The Bible indicates that salvation is received when one confesses his or her belief in Jesus as the risen Son of God (Mark 16:16; Romans 10:9-10), repents of the sins that he or she has committed (Acts 2:38; 2 Corinthians 7:10), and submits to baptism so that he or she reenacts Christ’s death, burial, and resurrection and, thereby, comes in contact with God’s grace through Christ’s blood which removes all sin (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; Romans 6:1-4; 1 Peter 3:18-22).…

Are We Wrong About Being Wrong?

In Matthew 23, Jesus had some unusually harsh words for a group of very religious people who had gotten a lot of things “wrong.” He acknowledged that they had gone to the trouble to “tithe mint and dill and cumin,” but He also accused them of having “neglected the weightier matters of the law” (vs. 23).   In other words, He seems to be saying to them, “You have taken the time to make sure that you give one-tenth of your spice rack; but in…

THE WHY SERIES – WHY DOES THE CHURCH OF CHRIST BELIEVE THAT BAPTISM IS ESSENTIAL TO SALVATION?

Nearly every religious body associated with Christianity administers baptism in some fashion. Some believe it is an act of obedience that symbolizes a believer’s faith in Christ and death to sin. Others believe that baptism is simply the means by which a believer becomes a member of the church body. But the congregations associated with the Church of Christ are known for their insistence that baptism is an essential part of salvation. On what is this belief based? This belief…

THE WHY SERIES – WHY DOES THE CHURCH OF CHRIST BELIEVE THAT IT IS THE CHURCH JESUS INSTITUTED?

As a member and minister of a congregation associated with the churches of Christ, I often encounter “why”questions—questions like “why do Churches of Christ lack instruments in worship,” “why do Churches of Christ forbid women from leading in the worship service,” “why do Churches of Christ observe the Lord’s Supper every Sunday,” and “why do Churches of Christ place so much emphasis on baptism.” Sometimes the questions are posed from those outside our fellowship, and sometimes the questions are posed from those…

NOT FOR SALE!

Have you ever had a garage sale at your house? Brooke and I have hosted a few successful garage sales during our 11 years of marriage, and by “successful” I mean that we are still married. Garage sales are fun, aren’t they? When I say “fun,” I mean “awful.” The only part I don’t hate about a garage sale is the 4-inch stack of wrinkled one-dollar bills at the end that means we will get at least one sit-down meal at a semi-nice restaurant…

Beauty & the Beast… And the Christian

I grew up watching Disney movies. Because of my love for drawing, I obviously watched all of the animated features; but I also religiously watched some of the lesser-known live-action Disney movies (“Swiss Family Robinson,” anyone?). As a child, Disney represented fun, family, adventure, and usually a few catchy songs.God’s Word. I haven’t grown up much since then (just ask my wife). I still watch every new animated Disney movie that is released (I saw “Moana” 3 times and one…

How Important Is Homework?

Our teenagers live in a demanding world, and one of the greatest demands that are placed upon them comes in the form of homework. A 2014 survey discovered that high school teachers, on average, assigned approximately 3.5 hours of homework each week. If a typical high school student has five classes with five different teachers, this could theoretically add up to 17.5 hours of homework every week! This would dwarf the amount of time that most teens spend in Bible…

THE FEAR FACTOR – PART THREE

As we wrap up this study on our response towards fear, let’s take a look at one final approach: THE “FEAR OF GOD” APPROACH: What does this approach towards fear look like? Imagine the following scenario: Something happens in our life that causes us to be afraid, but instead of doing nothing or reacting to the cause/source of that fear, we remind ourselves of whom we fear most: God. As a result of this foundational “fear” of God, we make…

WHO DO YOU SAY THAT I AM?

In Matthew 16:15, Jesus asked His disciples the most important question man will ever answer. He asked, “Who do you say that I am?” Peter answered correctly in the following verse when he said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God” (Matthew 16:16). Peter’s response was celebrated by Jesus and identified as the “rock” on which Jesus would build His church (Matthew 16:17-18). Why was so much emphasis placed on Peter’s confession of Jesus’ identity? Because it…