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10-11-2017 Beware Of What You Start

People devise things that eventually come back to, as we often say, haunt them, bite them, or backfire on them. “Whoever digs a pit will fall into it, And he who rolls a stone will have it roll back on him” (Proverbs 26:27 NKJV). David said the wicked, “made a pit and dug it out, And has fallen into the ditch which he made. His trouble shall return upon his own head, And his violent dealing shall come down on his own crown” (Psalm 7:15-16 NKJV). As Jesus said: “all who take the sword will perish by the sword” (Matthew 26:52 NKJV). Truly, “An angry man stirs up strife, And a furious man abounds in transgression” (Proverbs 29:22 NKJV). Whether “road rage” or “street fighting,” beware of what you start, you may get finished.
This is Johnny Polk, with “Words of Wisdom” brought to you by the Oneida church of Christ.

#finish, #start

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10-12-2017 Being “Religious” Without Jesus — Cornelius

“There was a certain man in Caesarea called Cornelius, a centurion of what was called the Italian Regiment, a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always” (Acts 10:1-2 NKJV). This was a deeply-religious family man, whose prayers and contributions would have caused many churches to have voted him full membership. BUT, he was missing one important thing. God had chosen him to hear what he was missing in his religion – Jesus Christ. Peter was sent to tell him “words by which you and all your household will be saved” (Acts 11:14 NKJV), and “commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord” (Acts 10:48 NKJV). It seems being “religious” is not enough for salvation without Jesus Christ.
This is Johnny Polk, with “Words of Wisdom” brought to you by the Oneida church of Christ.

#devout, #without-jesus-christ

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10-13-2017 What God Is Able To Do

John the Baptist told the Jews, “do not think to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I say to you that God is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones” (Matthew 3:9 NKJV). Under the Gospel of Christ, Jews, “if they do not continue in unbelief, will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again” (Romans 11:23 NKJV). And to Christians, “God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work” (2 Corinthians 9:8 NKJV). God is able to by-pass the Jews, save obedient Israelites, help Christians serve Him. The issue is never what God is able to do – but what are you willing to do? Jesus said, “He who believes and is baptized will be saved” (Mark 16:16 NKJV).
This is Johnny Polk, with “Words of Wisdom” brought to you by the Oneida church of Christ.

#christians, #gentiles, #jews

How is Jesus like the door of the sheepfold?

One question in this week’s lesson (Preaching and Ministry, Jesus the Good Shepherd, Lesson 7, p. 83) in the Gospel Advocate Foundations book asked, “How is Jesus like the door of the sheepfold?”

The verses under question say, “Then Jesus said to them again, “Most assuredly, I say to you, I am the door of the sheep. All who ever came before Me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture. The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” (John 10:7-10 NKJV)

Looking at the verses under question a few answers stand-out:

  1. Jesus is the legal way. He fulfills the prophecy of the Law, psalms and prophets. People who reject Jesus become law-breakers who work against the will of the God and harm the sheep.
  2. Jesus is the passage way. Unless an individual enters through the door named Jesus, there will be no salvation, freedom or spiritual nourishment provided.
  3. Jesus is the rejected way. Abundant life offered, abundant life rejected was the choice of the false teachers (thieves and robbers). Jesus’ desire was the former.

In light of Ezekiel 34, Jesus’ lesson about the sheepfold, the door, the thieves and robbers, and the shepherd of the sheep was meant to grab attentions, interest and decisions. It did and it still does by causing people to see Jesus as the legal way, the passage way and the rejected way.

Therefore there was a division again among the Jews because of these sayings. And many of them said, “He has a demon and is mad. Why do you listen to Him?” Others said, “These are not the words of one who has a demon. Can a demon open the eyes of the blind?”” (John 10:19-21 NKJV)

#christians-are-like-sheep, #gospel-advocate, #jesus

Oct. 16. Cyrus to be Savior of Israel

Is. 45:1-25

Isaiah continued his prophecy regarding the release of the Israelites from their Babylonian captors. He had predicted earlier that Babylon would be punished for the evil that they had done against Judah/Israel. God had chosen Cyrus and had raised him up to lead the Persians in His purpose to set His people free. The prophet outlined God’s plan for Cyrus that would make the Lord known to the Persian king and how He would use him for His purpose. Ultimately, Cyrus would know that God is, “A just God and a Savior; There is none besides Me.” Jews and Gentiles alike would be able to experience salvation through the blood of Christ under His New Covenant that would come hundreds of years later.

#chronological-bible-study

Disaster: Amos 9.10 VOTD

“All the sinners among my people will die by the sword—
the ones who say, ‘Disaster will not come near, it will not confront us.’”

Amos 9.10

Many rebellious people among the Israelites denied the prophet’s message of judgment for the nation’s sins.

Even today some deny they will reap what they sow, or that Jesus will return to judge those who do good and who do evil, Gal 6.6-10; Rom 2.4-11; 2 Pet 3.3-15.

#denial #judgment #VOTD

Oct. 15. Foolishness of Idolatry

Is. 44:1-28

Isaiah foretold that after a period of punishment, God would free His people. Temple servants of various gods were branded with the name of their god. He used the expression of, “I am the Lord’s” to indicate Israel’s ownership by God. They were indeed God’s servants even while being disobedient.

The Lord is King of Israel; his Redeemer; the Lord of hosts; the First and the Last. Isaiah pointed out the folly and futility of worshipping idols. A blacksmith may make a molten image or a craftsman may carve a wooden god, but they are useless. The god’s maker may become hungry and tired, but his god cannot relieve his discomfort. After falling down to worship the idol, nothing happens because it cannot see nor hear the pleas of its worshipper.

Only God can predict the future and see His prediction fulfilled. Many years before Cyrus’ birth, Isaiah had prophesied that Cyrus would divert the river and capture Babylon by traveling on the dry riverbed. God’s people would be freed to return to rebuild Jerusalem and His temple.

#chronological-bible-study