Called Out of Darkness

But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light. —1 Peter 2:9

The message echoing down through the ages of time from the throne of God is still applicable and resonates in this generation. It is the divine call of God to leave the darkness of this sinful world and to walk in the marvelous light of truth and righteousness. People’s lives are consumed with the lusts of the flesh: adultery, fornication, homosexuality, uncleanness, idolatry, hatred, competition, strife, envy, murder, drunkenness, partying, and the list goes on. Spiritual darkness is spreading across the land as God is rejected and people follow their own lustful designs. Let it be firmly established in every heart and mind that “They which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God” (Galatians 5:19-21).Read more

Walk in the Light

O house of Jacob, come ye, and let us walk in the light of the LORD. —Isaiah 2:5

As the world grows darker and darker in sin, the distinction between society and God’s people should grow greater and greater. The light of truth from God’s people will shine brighter and brighter as wickedness abounds. As the prophet Isaiah entreated God’s people of old, I entreat you: “Come ye, and let us walk in the light of the Lord.”

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Bible Study — Not of the World

Scripture Reading: I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil. They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. —John 17:14-16

Summary: Christians are called out of darkness and out of the world to live holy lives, walking in the light of Christ. They are to remain aloof from the influences of the world and are to daily live to glorify God in all things.

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Not of This World

While the chapels may be filled with lovers of the world who claim to be lovers of God, the divine Church of God is composed of those who are sold out for God and devoted to Christ and His cause above all else. As spiritual pilgrims on earth, God’s children still need jobs to work, schools to attend, houses in which to live, and money with which to buy things. However, they seek not the earthly treasures of this world but seek rather to please God daily with their affections, time, energy, and earthly possessions.

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Called to Holiness

Living for the Lord in holiness is the most fulfilling way to live life. Satisfying the commission and design of our Creator brings the greatest joy and enables individual potential to be maximized. While there are many roads to travel, only one leads to eternal life. Yes, it is a narrow way and few there be that find it, but it is a good way. Walking on the highway of holiness brings true rest and peace to the spirit, for it is in the presence of the Lord that one finds true satisfaction.Read more

Blind Guides

From the writings of Tertullian circa 210 AD: “So long as you deem yourself a Christian, you are a different man from a pagan. Give him back his own views of things! After all, he does not himself learn from your views. Why lean upon a blind guide if you have eyes of your own? Why be clothed by one who is naked if you have put on Christ?”

A Preacher of Righteousness

And [God] spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly. —2 Peter 2:5

In obedience to divine instruction from God, Noah faithfully labored for decades to build an ark. This ark was a means of deliverance from the flood that would destroy the wicked in God’s judgment. Despite being scoffed at and ridiculed, Noah steadfastly maintained integrity with God and did not yield to the pressures of society. He stood alone, believing God’s word was truth. He “prepared an ark to the saving of his house…and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith” (Hebrews 11:7).

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Called to Serve

There is a great need today for individuals who will be faithful servants of the church. Many temporal and spiritual needs exist with which a congregation must deal. There are offerings to collect and distribute, cleaning and chapel maintenance projects, events to organize, the sick to visit, and the poor to help. It is a great blessing to the body of Christ for there to be faithful, consistent servants who quietly and yet diligently attend to these duties.

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Scriptural Qualifications of a Deacon

(1 Timothy 3:8-13 and Acts 6:3)

  • Full of the Holy Ghost.
  • Sober-minded.
  • Not a drunkard.
  • Truthful and honest. Not deceitful.
  • Not greedy of money.
  • Believing and living the true doctrine.
  • Faithful.
  • Proven. Not a novice but experienced.
  • Full of wisdom.
  • Of honest and good report.
  • Blameless.
  • The husband of one living wife (polygamy/adultery prohibited).
  • Wife is to be sober, dignified, faithful, and not a gossip.
  • Children are in subjection.
  • Home is in proper care and order.

Editorial

“Those who are deacons of the mysteries of Jesus Christ must please all men in all ways. For they are not deacons of meats and drinks [only] but servants of the church of God” (Epistle of Ignatius to the Trallians, 2nd century).

The topic this quarter is about the office of deacons. It is a very important subject, and I am convinced that if it were understood and taken more seriously, the gospel work would operate much more smoothly and congregations would be in better condition. It was not until I was in the middle of research and study that I concluded it is a difficult subject. Shortly thereafter, I was reading in The Apostolic Church and found where C. E. Brown came to the same conclusion: “The study of the office of the deacon is perhaps the most difficult of any phase of the constitution of the early church.”

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