Name An Item Or Habit

From a spiritual perspective, the following are some of my observations regarding items or habits no longer in use today (comparatively speaking) as they were three to four generations ago:

1) The Bible is no longer habitually read, studied and used by members of the Lord’s church like it was in the 1940’s and 1950’s (we used to be called “walking Bibles” by those outside the church – http://cedarparkchurchofchrist.org/cpcofc/index.php?n=Articles.2010DailyBibleStudy).

2) Looking at all of the immorality in our society today, we can plainly see that Interest in spiritual values and principles are no longer “in vogue.” If they were, children would be taught these values at home and our society today would be less immoral as a result.

3) Hell fire and damnation sermons are today rarely heard from the pulpit (I grew up hearing these type of sermons on a regular basis back in the 1940’s). And guess what? The Lord’s church grew dramatically.

4) Home Bible studies with others are virtually non-existent today (no time to study, folks say).

5) Personal bible study at home is virtually non-existent today. Too many worldly influences (too many digital “toys”), thus, no time to study.

6) In the 1940’s and 50’s, folks habitually assembled to worship the Lord – so much so, that two to three week gospel meetings were not uncommon (I attended some of them). Today, they are unheard of. If we can get members to come to a three-day gospel meeting, we count ourselves successful.

7) Pews are not being filled today as they were three to four generations ago. The testimony of the “empty pew” is a testimony to our lack of focus on spiritual things (Colossians 3:1-2): http://mbriley.preachersfiles.com/2008/08/09/lessons-from-an-empty-pew/

I could go on and on and on (like the energizer battery bunny), but the above are enough samples to let folks see the fact that spirituality has greatly waned in our country and in the Lord’s church.

What’s the solution to all of the above? Open the Book! (read it and do what it says do – James 1:22-25): http://mbriley.preachersfiles.com/2008/01/08/lets-open-the-book/

#bible, #children, #church, #habit, #home, #meeting, #member, #principle, #read, #society, #spiritual, #study, #value, #vogue, #worship

Jesus' Most Striking Phrase

To me, the most striking phrase of Jesus is, “Have ye not read?” (Matthew 12:3,5; Matthew 19:4; Matthew 22:31; Mark 12:10,26; Luke 6:3).

The religious leaders of Christ’s day had indeed “read” the Old Testament passages that Jesus’ referred to in the above passages, but were more interested in upholding their own “traditions” rather than upholding God’s word (Matthew 15:3,6; Mark 7:8-9,13).

As a result, the Lord called these religious leaders “hypocrites” (Matthew 15:7-8 ; cf. Isaiah 29:13).

Today, our society would call them “reading-challenged.”

#day, #hypocrite, #jesus, #leader, #passage, #phrase, #read, #religious, #striking, #tradition, #word

What has encouraged me lately in my fait…

What has encouraged me lately in my faith? When I read about all of the imperfections of people in both Old and New Testaments, and how God used them for His glory, I’m greatly encouraged, because I realize my own imperfections, knowing that the Great Potter is still molding and shaping me into the kind of person He wants me to be – http://mbriley.preachersfiles.com/2006/01/07/clay-in-the-potters-hands/.

I pray that I’ll remain that pliable clay in His hands and not hardened clay through the deceitfulness of sin (Hebrews 3:13).

#encourage, #faith, #glory, #imperfection, #person, #potter, #read, #shape

A recent quote that made me sit up? Robe…

A recent quote that made me sit up? General Robert E. Lee once stated: “The Bible is a book in comparison with which all others in my eyes are of minor importance, and which in all my perplexities and distresses has never failed to give me light and strength”

The Bible has never failed to give me light and strength either.

General Douglas MacArthur was heard to say to one of his fellows: “Believe me, sir, never a night goes by, be I ever so tired, but I read the Word of God before I go to bed.”

Even though dead, General MacArthur still speaks, providing us a great example!

#bible, #book, #distress, #example, #light, #perplex, #read, #strength

New Testament

I plan to listen to the New Testament every month. January is completed. I encourage you to read or listen to the Scriptures every day. How can we serve a Lord that we do not know?

#bible, #new-testament, #read, #scripture

Who taught me the gospel? My grandmother…

Who taught me the gospel? My grandmother was my primary example of teaching me the value of Bible study – she faithfully read and studied her Bible every day. She told me one day, “Mike, the Bible has the answer to every problem we face in life” – And so it does.

And after reading and studying the Bible for myself all these years, I realize how correct she was in her assessment of how the Bible does indeed provide us with an answer to every problem we face in life. “If” we will only “hear” what God is saying to us through His inspired writings, and then take His prescription which contains the solution to our problems.

#answer, #example, #gospel, #problem, #read, #study, #teach