August 2015 Issue of Christian Worker (Foundational Principles)

Here’s a link to the latest PDF issue of the Christian Worker.

Here are the topics that you will find:

  • Jesus, Our Saviour (Cody Westbrook)
  • Hear Sam (Willcut)
  • Believe (Mike Vestal)
  • Repent (Mike Bonner)
  • Confession of Faith (Jerrod “Boogie” Doss)
  • Baptism (Robert Jefferies)
  • Living a Faithful, Growing, Godly Life (Rob L. Whitacre)

Christian Worker is an edification effort of the Southwest church of Christ in Austin, Texas.

You can subscribe to the email version of the Christian Worker paper by clicking on the publications link on their website and then following the given instructions…or by clicking on the link provided here in The Fellowship Room under the “Friends” category to your right.

Copyright © 2015 Southwest church of Christ, All rights reserved.

#basic-principles-of-the-gospel, #christian-growth, #christian-worker, #confessing-our-faith, #confession, #hearing-the-gospel, #how-to-become-a-christian, #jesus-christ, #jesus-our-savior, #necessity-of-faith, #purpose-of-water-baptism, #repentance

Why second-grader Jesse didn't like school

Sherrie Porter just shared this and allowed me to pass it on.

I was reminded today of something my nephew said years ago when he was in 2nd grade: Jesse was visiting my grandmother, his great grandmother, a retired school teacher. She asked Jesse how he liked school and he said he didn’t! Grandma chuckled and asked him why? Jesse said, “Because the teachers are always trying to teach me something I don’t know!” He was in 2nd grade. He was honest. I’ve noticed a lot of people never grow out of that stage, though they lose Jesse’s candor and honesty.

Great story and true observation there, Sherrie!

#christian-growth, #illustrations

How Then Shall We Live?

 

One of the greatest and most precious promise in the Word of God is th certainty go the return of the Lord Jesus for His church.  Christians are expected to live a different kind of life than that of the unbeliever. Col. 3:1-2 tells us that we are to set our minds on the things that are above; that is on things that have a Heavenly perspective.

How should we live and conduct ourselves in the here and now as we wait for Jesus’ return?  Every generation of Christians from the first century has had the promise of His coming. Believing that He could come at any time should motivate us to greater service to Jesus and His church.

How should we be living in anticipation of the return of the Blessed Hope (Titus 2:13)?  We must be found not only waiting and looking forward to His coming but must be active and faithful in our service to Him. Paul gave us a wonderful motivation for righteous living–believers are waiting for a hope that is already a certainty. We can look forward to Christ’s return with eager expectation.   We must adhere to the words of a popular song:“We’ll work til Jesus come.”

By utilizing the term“Blessed Hope,” Paul brings out at least 2 aspects of Christian living that should be stressed today.

Waiting with anticipation and  hoping for Christ’s glorious appearing.  The waiting is good  for us: it builds character, endurance, and perseverance. The hoping makes the waiting bearable.

C. S. Lewis wrote: “It is since Christians have largely ceased to think to the other world that they have become ineffective in this one. Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in; aim at earth and you will get neither.”

Four words seem to characterize our earthly sojourn.

  1. Occupy.  Use your talents for the Lord. I believe that every Christian has at least one talent that he or she can utilize to bring glory to God. There is room in the Kingdom for all Christians to develop and use their talents to further the work of the church.
  2. Purify.  We must say “No!” to the world’s attractions. (1 John 2:15-17)  we must practice mind renewal in a mindless society (Romans 12:1-2).
  3. Watch.  This watching will include waiting and working. We must seek to be active in His service and not just occupy a pew.  We must want to do all it takes to “grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ.”
  4. Worship.  Gathering around the Lord’s Table reminds us of both redemption and the return of the Lord Jesus.

Keep looking up! Jesus  may come TODAY!

#book-of-titus, #christian-growth, #christian-living

The challenge is to be a better Christian

David said, “From the end of the earth will I call unto thee, when my heart is overwhelmed: Lead me to the rock that is higher than I” (Psalms 61:2). Paul said, “Not that I have already obtained, or am already made perfect: but I press on, if so be that I may lay hold on that for which also I was laid hold on by Christ Jesus,” and, “I press on toward the goal unto the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:12, 14).

As you consider the past year, have you been the strong Christian you had intended to be? Have you been as faithful as you think you should have been, or could have been? Have you grown to be more like Jesus Christ over the past year?

At the beginning of this New Year you will be challenging yourself with resolutions to take better care of your body, to be a better neighbor, a better parent and a better spouse. These are noble goals. But I want to challenge all of you to set your sights on a higher goal; a goal that is greater than all the earthly improvements a person could make. That challenge is to be a better Christian.

A better Christian will take better care of his or her body because it belongs to the Lord, not to you (1 Corinthians 6:20). A faithful Christian will strive to overcome those bad habits that hinder the health of the body so that he or she will have a long and productive life in the service of the Lord Jesus Christ.

A better Christian will automatically be a better neighbor because of the second commandment: “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself” (Matthew 22:39). As a Christian grows to be more like Christ he or she understands better that when you sacrifice for your neighbor then you are sacrificing for Christ, and, you are laying up treasures for yourself in heaven (Matthew 25:40; 6:19-21).

A better Christian will also be a better parent. A better Christian observes closely how God brings up His children with love, admonition and discipline. God applies love liberally to His children. In turn God has provided parents to give admonition to the children, to bring them up in the right ways of God (Hebrews 12:5-7; Ephesians 6:1-2).

A better Christian will be a better spouse. A better Christian understands more deeply the relationship the church has toward her bridegroom – Christ (Ephesians 5:23-33). Christ’s love for His bride caused Him to give Himself for her (Ephesians 5:25). This deeper understanding reveals the true nature of agape, and is transferred to greater faithfulness of a husband for his wife and a wife for her husband.

If you accept the challenge to be a better Christian it will make every aspect of your life a better life. It will also cause your relationship with God and Jesus Christ to grow stronger. You will want to spend more time in prayer with God. A better Christian will take time to help his or her family grow closer to God.

Being a better Christian will automatically make you a better servant in the church. Better Christians gladly sacrifice their time and talents to help their Father. Our Lord Jesus Christ even gave His life’s blood for the church. The church was designed by God to be the place where Christians abide and serve and grow.

Now it is your turn to climb up higher, to press toward the goal of the upward call of God. The view of heaven is much better from up there.

In Christ, Steve Preston

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#christian-development, #christian-growth, #christian-sanctification, #resolutions

Patience with Self vs. Pressing Forward

Paul never forgot his past, yet, in another sense, he totally forgot it.  He once wrote,

And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry;  Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief.  And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.  This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief (1 Tim. 1:12-15).

and also,

For I am the least of the apostles, that am not meet to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God (1 Cor. 15:9).

Yet, in Philippians 3:13-14, Paul says,

Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,  I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.

So, in one sense, Paul never forgot his past and how he’d persecuted the Lord.  Yet, in another sense, he put that completely behind him and pressed toward the prize, working feverishly in the kingdom of Christ.  This is a pattern for Christians today, too.  Do not ever forget that you are a sinner saved by the grace of God, but don’t dwell on it to the point of wallowing in self-pity and being hindered in serving God.  Remember, but forget.  This is one of the several paradoxes of Christianity – we are dead, but alive (dead to sin, alive to Christ); we are free, but slaves (free from sin, willing servants to Christ); salvation is free, but it costs everything (can’t pay for it, but must give all to God).  There might be a sermon in there somewhere!  😛

#advice, #christian-growth, #nudge

What’s on my heart at this time as I pr…

What’s on my heart at this time as I prepare for Bible Study and worship is that I, along with my fellow believers at Cherry Street will draw near to the Lord Jesus. I pray that we can worship in spirit and truth. I look forward to the Bible lessons in Sunday School and the message by Bro. Nick. I thank God for dedicated men who love the Lord and teach and preach His Word so that all can grow in the grace and knowledge of the Jesus! Keep looking up! Jesus may come today!!!!

#christian-growth, #heart, #hope