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July 2014

The Gospel Journal

EDITORIAL

July 2014 The Gospel Journal EDITORIAL THE CHRISTIANS ATTITUDE TOWARD SATAN when Jesus was at His

THE CHRISTIANS ATTITUDE TOWARD SATAN

when Jesus was at His lowest point in His life, we find in Matthew 4 Satan comes to Him tempting the Lord to deny God and worship him (Satan). Once again he is very crafty and cunning in how he uses his words and misuses the word of God in trying to convince the Lord to follow him instead of doing God’s will. Paul declares Satan can, and does, appear somewhat different than most would believe. “And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light” (2 Cor.11:14). As false teachers do not show us who they are, so their leader, Satan does not show us who he is. Jesus tells us Satan is a murderer and the father of lies. “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it” (John 8:44). How can anyone trust a murderer and a liar? You cannot do so and thus we must not trust anything about Satan. Satan hates the Word of God and does his best to make sure it does not take up root in the heart of mankind (Luke 8:13). He knows if the Word of God has full course, it will convert the sin- ner from his evil life and bring him to live a life in har- mony with the will of God. He knows the Word of God and will use it to his own advantage as he perverts it and tries his best to make it say that which it does not say. The Christian must never underestimate Satan. We must always understand Satan is very dangerous. He is at work always trying to steal away every child of God and he will use whatever means before him to accom- plish his goal. James says we must resist Satan, “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7). If we submit ourselves to God, we can resist whatever Satan throws at us. James says when we do this, Satan will flee from us. Resist- ing Satan will not always be easy; he will do his best to trap us and destroy us. There are those who have been overcome by Satan, but with God’s help they can be recovered. As Paul stated, “And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will” (2 Tim. 2:26).

Johnie Scaggs, Jr.

What should be the attitude Christians have toward Satan? It is imperative for every Christian to understand who Satan is and what he is capable of doing. For one to not have a good understanding of Satan would be fool- ish. He is our enemy; he is not our friend and those who befriend him are likewise our enemies. We are intro- duced to Satan in the third chapter of the book of Gene- sis when he enticed Eve to sin. She, along with Adam, gave into temptation and thus sin entered into the world. Satan’s whole purpose has been, and is, to overthrow man as God’s crowning creation and destroy his happi-

ness. The Christian needs to understand Satan is real. He is not some scary bed time story told by someone; he is not like the boogeyman. The pictures men have printed to describe to us who Satan is are unreal. These pictures do not come close in helping us understand how ugly and evil Satan truly is. If one were to see Satan in his true form, he/she would stay as far away from him as possible. The book of Job describes Satan as one who goes “to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it” (Job 2:2). Peter describes him as a roaring lion, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” (1 Pet. 5:8). Satan is the very opposite of God; whatever God is, Satan is not. God is love; Satan is not love. God is merciful; Satan is not. God wants the very best for mankind; Satan wants the very worst for mankind and works daily to ensure man’s doom. Hence, the first thing we need to know about Satan is he is real. The Christian should also recognize the nature and devices of Satan. We are told by Paul, “Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his devices” (2 Cor. 2:11). Paul informs us we can know the devices Satan uses to try and get an advantage over us. If we can know these things, then we can fight against any and all things Satan would use against us. As one reads about the different times when Satan is at work trying to deceive God’s elect, we learn he is cun- ning and crafty. In the Garden of Eden as Satan was de- ceiving Eve, he was cunning and very crafty about how he went about to deceive her. He used God’s Word against her by changing it ever so slightly. Likewise,

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about to deceive her. He used God’s Word against her by changing it ever so slightly.

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July 2014

The Gospel Journal

A SENIOR’S MOMENT

July 2014 The Gospel Journal A SENIOR’S MOMENT Keith A. Mosher, Sr. BELIEVING THE PROPHETS On

Keith A. Mosher, Sr.

BELIEVING THE PROPHETS

On one occasion Jesus challenged the ecclesiastical leaders of that time with: “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me” (John 5:39; KJV). In possessing the scrolls of the Old Testament, those Jews of Jesus’ day thought that salvation was a certainty, for God had not entrusted those writings to anyone else. Jeremiah had warned the Jews of his time not to put such trust in the material (Jer. 7:4); and the emphasis by Jesus was that the possession of the an- cient texts was not salvation, but that they pointed to Him, the only One who could bring remission of sins to the Jews and to the rest of the world (cf. John 3:16). [Yet, some brethren, today, have taken it upon themselves to insist that there is no prophecy concerning the Christ and His mission in the Old Testament and have written a commentary to that end. See “The Transforming Word: A One Volume Commentary on the Bible,” General Editor, Mark Hamil- ton, Abilene Christian University.] Is Jesus, as He said, the center-point of the scriptures? Note the following Old Tes- tament verses. Jesus is the “seed of woman” and is “Shiloh,” Who will come when Judaism no longer is in force (Gen. 3:15; 49:10). Both the virgin conception of the Christ and His mission to fulfill the law of Moses were predicted nearly 1500 years before their occurrence! Jesus is also the anti- type of the passover lamb (Ex. 12:1-51; cf. I Cor. 5:7). John the baptizer was fully aware of Jesus’ coming to be the perfect sacrifice for sin and said: “Behold the lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world” (John 1:29). Jesus is now the High Priest of the Christian faith as was the Aaronic family under Judaism (Lev. 4:3; Heb. 4:14). He is the antitype of the “rock in Horeb” (Num. 20: 10; 1 Cor. 10:4) and is the fulfillment of Moses’ prophecy of a new lawgiver Who would take Moses’ place (Deut. 18:15; Acts 3:22). Joshua met Him (Jos. 5:13-15) and Jesus is the Savior as were the Judges, (Hebrew “saviors”) who were called on by God every time the Jews were oppressed (cf. Jud. 3:9). Ruth, of course, is in the lineage of Jesus (Ruth 4:22; Mat. 1:5). Jesus is the full antitype of the “mercy seat” empha- sized in Samuel’s history of the troubles of the Jewish priests (cf. Rom. 3:25) and He is the king of all kings, espe-

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(cf. Rom. 3:25) and He is the king of all kings, espe- 4 cially of those

cially of those mentioned in 1 Kings through the Chroni- cles (cf. Rev. 1:5). Jesus is a “ready scribe” as was Ezra (Ezra 7:10) and overcame all opposition as Nehemiah did (Neh. 6:16; cf. Rev. 1:18). Jesus is the “light of the world” (John 8:12) and had Esther not interfered to save the Jews (Est. 4:14), no Messiah would have come, for the promise of His coming would have to be in Palestine and not in Persia (Gen. 12:3). The Jews celebrate Purim or the “feast of lights” to celebrate Esther’s triumph (John 5:1) and the Christ is all the light. Job wished for Him (Job 19:25) and the psalmist de- scribed Him and His death (Psa. 23 and Psa. 22). He is the antitype of wisdom (Prov. 8:1ff.; 1 Cor. 1:30) and of the preacher of Ecclesiastes (Eccl. 1:1; Matt. 4:17). He is a groom married to a bride (the church of Christ), as was the groom of the Song of Solomon, although this latter book does not seem to be describing any antitype (Eph.

5:25).

Isaiah mentions the Christ and His mission often, and Isaiah is known as the “Messianic Prophet.” Note Isaiah 2:1-4; 7:14; 11:1-2; 53:1ff., etcetera. Isaiah insist- ed that Jesus would start a new kingdom after being con- ceived by a virgin and would arise from the tribe of Judah as a Suffering Servant. Jeremiah prophesied of a New Covenant that would be initiated in the Messianic era (Jer. 31:31) and Ezekiel, as Joshua before him, saw the glory of the Second Person of the Godhead who would come as the Savior (Eze. 1:26). Daniel saw Him as a “stone” cut out of a mountain whose kingdom would never end (Dan.

2:44).

Hosea said He would come out of Egypt (Hos. 11:1, cf. Matt. 2:19). Joel prophesied of an outpouring of the miraculous when Messiah began to reign (Joel 2:28-32) and Peter insisted that Joel’s vision was fulfilled on Pen- tecost when the church of Christ started (Acts 2:17).

As was Amos, Jesus is a “sword bearer” (Amos 8:9ff.; Mat. 10:34) As Obadiah, Jesus is opposed to pride (Oba. 18), and as Jonah, Jesus had a mission to the Gentiles as well as to the Jews (Jon. 1:2; John 10:16; 3:16). Micah pinpointed the very village in which Jesus would be born (Mic 5:2) and, as Nahum,

July 2014

The Gospel Journal

the Christ is a salvation giver (Nah. 1:4; Luke 19:10). Saving faith is in Christ and Habakkuk knew that (Hab. 2:4; cf. Rom. 1:16-17). Jesus is the anti- type of Zephaniah’s “day star” (Zep. 3:15) and the encourager of rebuilding as did Haggai (Hag. 2:6-9). Zechariah pictured Him riding on the colt of a don- key as would a King and sitting on His throne as a priest and king as the BRANCH (nazar; He would be called a Nazarene, Mat. 2:23)(Zec. 9:9; 6:12-13). And at the end of the Old Testament, Malachi’s in- spired vision was of the “Sun of righteousness” com- ing with “healing in his wings” (Mal. 4:2). The “Sun of righteousness” is the Son of God. Given all of the above evidence, is not the Old Testament filled with prophecies of the Christ and His mission? Who could miss all of those amazing visions and deny their import?

Dean of Academics and Student Life Memphis School of Preaching

of Academics and Student Life Memphis Sc hool of Preaching Continued from page 3—Scaggs We should

Continued from page 3—Scaggs We should understand Satan is powerful and he is dangerous. He can entrap anyone who lets him do so. But remember you are stronger than Satan if you are a child of God. You can overcome anything he places in your way. As Paul said, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Phil 4:13). God has giv- en us the victory, “But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Cor. 15:57). Satan’s destiny is eternal damnation in the lake of fire. Jesus said, “Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:” (Matt. 25:41). Those who serve Satan will spend their eternal life with him and not with God. What a great loss that would be. Let’s make sure, we understand who Satan is and stay out of his hands of deception.

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July 2014

The Gospel Journal

July 2014 The Gospel Journal Bill Goring The Bible does not provide any specific and de-

Bill Goring

The Bible does not provide any specific and de- tailed information relative to the origin of Satan. In the oldest book of the Bible, Satan appears along with "the sons of God" (Job 1:6). He is present in the Garden of Eden (Gen. 3:1ff). From "the beginning" the devil was a murderer, a liar, and "abode not in the truth" (Jn. 8:

44). It appears to be a necessary inference that Satan was created (Col. 1: 16). Since God manifestly did not create Satan innately evil, Satan must have chosen to oppose rather than serve God. There are actually three views as to the devil's origin. The devil was created either as man or some life form and phenomenally evolved to almost possess God -like abilities. There is no intimation of such in the scriptures to even allow this view as being perceived as plausible. A necessary inference to suggest such a view is precluded because this view presents contradictions as far as the Genesis account of creation (Gen. 1-3). How anyone could even entertain such a view is be- yond me. The devil was one of the Godhead who went bad. This view is blasphemy. God inherently and innately is good and cannot "go bad". God not only knows the past and the present, but the future as well (Acts 15:18). Indeed, “how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past tracing out” (Rom. 11:33). Satan, by comparison, does not possess these qualities. For ex- ample, he is not omnipotent. Scripture affirms: “… greater is he [God] that is in you than he [Satan] that is in the world” (1 John 4:4). When he sought to “sift” the apostles as wheat, he first had to “ask” for them (Luke 22:31). Satan is not omnipresent. His position as “god of this world” (2 Cor. 4:4) was “delivered” unto him (Luke 4:6). When he eventually is cast permanent- ly into his place of eternal torment, the devil will be powerless to resist (Rev. 20:10). In discussing the apocalyptic literature of the book of Revelation which speaks of Satan’s being “bound” (20:2), Hardeman Nichols observed: “The binding of Satan, we conclude, equally means that his work will be restrained in a cer- ”

strained. Further, Satan is not omniscient. If we are

Omnipresence, by definition, is not re-

tain realm

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we are Omnipresence, by definition, is not re- tain realm 6 THE ORIGIN OF SATAN sufficiently

THE ORIGIN OF SATAN

sufficiently knowledgeable of the Word of God, and carefully wield that knowledge to resist him, the devil does not possess a superior knowledge sufficient to overcome us, but will “flee” (Jam. 4:17; cf. Matt. 4:4). He is not intelligent enough to outwit us in order to “snatch” us from the Lord’s hand (John 10:28). Satan is not deity. Deity has to do with rank and the essential nature of God. Here are some attributes of deity which the devil does not possess: Deity cannot be restrained. Job 42:2 states. “I know that thou canst do every thing, and that no thought can be withholden from thee.” Job 1:12 says, “Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand.” Deity is all powerful (Gen. 17:1-8). Satan is not. His power is limited (Job 1:12; 2:6). He can snatch no one from God’s hand, “And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand” (John 10:28-29). When resisted, he flees (Jam. 4:17). When cast into hell, he will have no power to resist God’s judgment. “And the devil that deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brim- stone…” (Rev. 20:10). Since he is not deity, he then is created. All things outside of God were created “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or do- minions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: and he is before all things, and by him all things consist” (Col. 1:16-17).And all that God created was good.- NO evil at all! “And God saw everything that he had made, and, behold, it was very good. And the evening and the morning were the sixth day” (Gen. 1:31). With the term “very good”, the existence of anything evil in creation is denied. Thus the devil was created good and became bad. Since the devil was created good and is now evil, it is obvious that he fell. The New Testament seems

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July 2014

The Gospel Journal

July 2014 The Gospel Journal Andy Cates OUR ARCHENEMY Our archenemy is Satan. It is his

Andy Cates

OUR ARCHENEMY Our archenemy is Satan. It is his mission to see that our souls are destroyed eternally in hell fire. For this reason, Peter wrote, “Be sober, be vigilant; be- cause your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, wal- keth about, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Pet. 5:8). Let us never underestimate our enemy. “To be fore- warned is to be forearmed.”

SATAN’S POWER The Devil was an angel. Angels have always been subject to God (Psa. 103:21). However, Satan rebelled against God, along with his followers, and they were cast down from heaven (2 Pet. 2:4; Jude 6). Satan was allowed to roam, to go “to and fro in the earth” (Job 1:7). He was able to access the ear of God (Job 1:6). Various passages speak of Satan as a prince denoting rulership. The realm of his rule is the world. “Now is the judgment of this world: now shall the prince of this world be cast out.” (John 12:31). “Of judgment, because the prince of this world is judged.” (John 16:11). “Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:” (Eph. 2:2). In the world, Satan disguises himself. He did so before Eve in the Garden of Eden, (Gen. 3:1). Job did not recognize that it was Satan demonstrating such evil against him (Job 1:21). Also in Job, it is impressed up- on the reader how quickly Satan can operate (Job 1:12-

19). Satan tempts man (1 Thess. 3:5), and because his influence is so powerful, few will be saved. “Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: Because strait is the gate, and nar- row is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it (Matt. 7: 13, 14). Satan does not work on the heart of man directly, but through mediums. Some of his resources include wicked people, filthy and lewd movies, internet sites, television programming, magazines, and books; some

THE POWER OF SATAN

types of music; the advertising of sinful products; doc- trines of men; etc. Satan works to tempt, deceive, and lead men using those devices. “Lest Satan should get an advantage of us: for we are not ignorant of his de- vices” (2 Cor. 2:11). The wicked one hates the Word of God, and if allowed, snatches it from human hearts (Matt. 13:19), and blinds the minds of men to the Gos- pel’s saving message (2 Cor. 4:4). Satan hates the church that was bought with the blood of Christ and sows tares therein (Matt. 13:38, 39 cf; Acts 20:28). Paul compares false teachers coming into the midst, to the serpent entering Eden. “But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtil- ty, so your minds should be corrupted from the sim- plicity that is in Christ” (2 Cor. 11:3). In this same let- ter, Paul wrote that Satan pretends to be an angel of light and his servants are falsely fashioned as ministers of righteousness. “For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is trans- formed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the minis- ters of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works” (2 Cor. 11:13-15).

LIMITATIONS TO SATAN’S POWER Satan was created by God (Col. 1:15-17 cf). Though very powerful, our adversary is not omnipo- tent. Though he has vast knowledge, he is not omnisci- ent. Though he has a wide area of circulation, he is not omnipresent. There are very definite limitations to Sa- tan’s power. Only with God’s permission was he able to directly afflict Job, but was not allowed to take Job’s life (Job 2:6). In the garden, he could not force Eve to eat of the forbidden fruit (Gen. 2:1-6). He cannot force us to do that which God has forbidden today. Jesus re- sisted Satan’s temptations in the wilderness. “Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and minis- tered unto him” (Matt. 4:11). “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the

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came and minis- tered unto him” (Matt. 4:11). “Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the Continued

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July 2014 The Gospel Journal Berry Grider WHY WAS SATAN ALLOWED TO TEST JOB? Anytime we

Berry Grider

WHY WAS SATAN ALLOWED TO TEST JOB?

Anytime we delve into the mind of God and ask questions as to why He did or did not do something, we are treading into an area where much caution must be observed. One of the fundamental lessons He de- sires we learn early in life is this, “For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways, says the Lord” (Isa. 55:8). Truly the question “why was Sa- tan allowed to test Job?” must be handled carefully and cautiously so that one does not impugn the motives of the Almighty. The story of Job is one of the most noteworthy Biblical accounts. Job was a righteous man who lived during the Patriarchal Age (Job 1:8). He offered sacri- fices before God on behalf of his family (Job 1:5). He was blessed abundantly by God (Job 1:3). On a partic- ular day the text reveals that Satan came before God (Job 1:6). Why he was allowed this opportunity to come before the Almighty one can only surmise. Brother Curtis Cates, a masterful scholar of the Book of Job, sometimes said to his students, “remember eve- ry dog has his day.” So it was with Satan. When God asked what he had been doing, Satan replied, “From going to and fro on the earth, and from walking back and forth on it.” Satan considers the earth his realm. Even our Lord identifies him as the prince or ruler of this world (John 14:30) and John would also record, “We know that we are of God, and the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one” (1 John 5:19). God understands the mission and motive of Satan. He hates God and therefore he hates man. His mission is murder and he manipulates through the lie (John 8:44). God asked Satan, “Have you considered My servant Job, that there is none like him on the earth, a blame- less and upright man, one who fears God and shuns evil?” (Job 1:8). Well, indeed, Satan had considered Job but was under the delusion that Job only served God because of the abundant blessings God had be- stowed upon him. God had blessed Job. God enjoys blessing His people (Jas. 1:17). However, this was not the reason that Job served God. Satan challenged God. “But now, stretch out Your hand and touch all that he has, and he will surely curse You to Your face!” (Job.

1:11). God accepted Satan’s challenge but why? God does not have to prove anything to anyone. He certain- ly does not have to bow to the whim of the devil for the devil is subservient to him no matter how rebellious and resistant he may be to the power of God. Let us consider a few reasons why perhaps God allowed Sa- tan to test the righteous Job. First, consider that God demonstrated to the devil the futility and folly of his thinking. Job proved to the devil that no matter how much he was persecuted that he would not turn from God. It is true that tribulations sometimes cause God’s children to lose heart and turn from the Father in Heaven. The same is true with rich- es. Some who have great wealth leave God because they have found their security in their wealth. But Job proved that his faithfulness did not depend on God’s blessings. Job said, “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, And naked shall I return there. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; Blessed be the name of the Lord” (Job 1:21). Remember, Job did not know what Satan was doing. As far as he understood, God had taken away his blessings. Yet he would not lose faith in God. Imagine the anguish the devil feels when we refuse to serve him, despite the trials we face in life. Job proved to the devil that men can love and serve God regardless of man’s circumstances. Second, through the lesson of Job we learn that all must suffer. Sorrow accompanies sin and we live in a world smitten with sin. The people of God are not im- mune from suffering. James wrote, “My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials” (Jas. 1:2). Notice the inspired writer said, “when you fall”, not if you fall. There is a thread that runs throughout humanity and it is called suffering. The account of Job reinforces two tremendous truths. (1) Bad things hap- pen to good people, and (2) God never leaves us during such trials (Heb. 13:5). Third, through his suffering, Job’s faith was per- fected

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us during such trials (Heb. 13:5). Third, through his suffering, Job’s faith was per- fected Continued

July 2014

The Gospel Journal

July 2014 The Gospel Journal Stan A. Stockton THE CHARACTER OF SATAN A centuries-old impression regarding

Stan A. Stockton

THE CHARACTER OF SATAN

A centuries-old impression regarding Satan is that of a terrifying man-like creature with a red body, horns, pointed ears and tail, giant bat-like wings, and who possesses irresistible powers. Part of that view includes an army of hideous, mean-spirited demons scurrying about with instruments of torture, gleefully tormenting “the damned” in a giant underground cav- ern filled with flames and smoke. Medieval and Re- naissance painters–commissioned or influenced by the Roman Catholic Church – selected written descriptions from the Bible and applied their vivid imaginations to portray “biblical” scenes of Satan and hell in graphic and horrifying detail. They used visual means to teach illiterate believers (who could not read the word of God for themselves) of the awful sufferings in hell, and to thus convince them of the need to obey the doctrines of the Catholic Church. On the other hand, modern car- icatures depict a powerful, scheming, occasionally comical manifestation – sporting a pointed black beard and wearing a red-and-black satin cloak – that uses clever lies to trick people into “selling their soul to the devil.” Such erroneous representations distort the truth about Satan and diminish the facts of his existence and his character. They fail to acknowledge that the Scrip- tures teach the deadly and serious reality of a place of eternal, fiery punishment “…prepared for the devil and his angels…” into which God will also discard “… whosoever was not found written in the book of life…” (Matt. 25:41; Rev. 20:15, 21:8). Therefore, it is sometimes necessary to study what a thing is not, be- fore learning what a thing is. One must first unravel the myths and dispel false ideas surrounding Satan (no doubt promulgated and encouraged by him), to better understand his true character. Satan is not eternal. God created Satan as one of the angels, not as a physical creature in the fashion of man, whom God created from “the dust of the ground” (Gen. 2:7). Satan had a beginning, and there- fore cannot be an eternal being. Satan is not omniscient. He cannot and does not know all things, though he is a thinking, rational being. He had the free will to obey or disobey God and chose

to rebel against God, who cast Satan and “the angels that sinned” out of heaven, condemning them to eternal punishment (2 Pet. 2:4; Jude 1:6; Rev. 12:9). Satan is not omnipresent. He cannot be every- where at the same time. He is bounded by time and space, as is all of God’s living and non-living creation (cf. Job 1:7, “…going to and fro in the earth…”). Satan is not omnipotent. God placed limits on his actions and his powers (Job 1:8-12, 2:3-6). Further- more, man can resist Satan (Matt. 4:1-11; Jam. 4:7), and Satan cannot use overwhelming temptations to cause man to act against his free will (1 Cor. 10:13); when one yields to temptations, though, Satan “wins” (Jam. 1:13-15). Next, the careful Bible student may gain insight into Satan’s character by examining his descriptive names used in the Bible. He is called: accuser (Rev. 12:10), adversary (1 Pet. 5:8), deceiver (Rev. 12:9), liar (John 8:44), murderer (John 8:44), ruler of a kingdom of demons (Matt. 12:24-26; Luke 11:14-18), and the god of this world that blinds the minds of men (2 Cor. 4:3-4). One may thus draw several conclusions about Satan’s character from “rightly dividing” these and other verses (2 Tim. 2:15). Satan is clever and deceitful. Paul instructed Tim- othy to warn brethren of “the snare of the devil” (1 Tim. 3:7; 2 Tim. 2:24-26). Paul also compared the work of false teachers masquerading as “ministers of righteousness,” with Satan’s tactic of transforming himself into “…an angel of light…” (2 Cor. 11:13-15). Satan uses deception and countless lies, delivered via his ministers, to lull Christians into complacency and trap them into error. Sadly, far too many brethren not only believe his lies, but they actively defend their er- ror and deride loving brethren that try to correct them! Satan is intelligent and calculating. Satan be- guiled Eve in the garden because he was “…more sub- til than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made” (Gen.

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because he was “…more sub- til than any beast of the field which the LORD God

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July 2014 The Gospel Journal Stephen Wiggins Fundamental Principles THREE QUESTIONS ANSWERED “ those things which

Stephen Wiggins

Fundamental Principles

THREE QUESTIONS ANSWERED

those

things which are most surely believed among us” (Luke 1:1).

#1

Sometimes questions can cause us to reflect on matters that we ordinarily would never think about. This happened to me not long ago. A person asked me the following questions: “Do you study God’s word because you believe? Or, do you believe because you study?” The answer is as follows: There is a sense in which one may answer “yes” to both questions without fear of contradiction. There is a sense in which one studies the scriptures because one already believes them to be God’s inspired word. There is another sense in which one may study the scriptures and through that study are led to become believers. For example, study of the scriptures often precedes one coming to faith. The Bible says that “faith comes by hearing, and hear- ing by the word of God” (Rom. 10:17). In this sense one hears the gospel, or studies it from the written word, and comes to faith in God and his Son. They are now obedient believers because they studied. This seemingly is what took place concerning the noble Be- reans. The text says they “examined the Scriptures eve- ry day to see if what Paul said was true” (Acts 17:11). Thus, they studied to see if the apostle was telling the truth. Once they discovered he was true to God’s in- spired revelation they became believers in what he was preaching, the gospel. In this sense the study or hearing of God’s word precedes faith; and actually initiates faith within a person’s heart. In another sense, however, one’s faith may pre- cede a study of the scriptures. One studies because they are already believers. I know this is now true for me personally. There is not a day that goes by that I do not study and reflect on God’s word for direction in my own life and the preparation of lessons in order to preach the gospel to others. I engage in this study of God’s word because I am already a believer and desire to grow in the knowledge of the Savior; and to help others mature as well as I teach the wonderful truths of God’s word. The fact that I already am a believer in God and his word serves as motivation for me to study that Divine revelation all the more. In this sense, I study because I believe. May God give us the desire to know more about his precious word that we may be- come the type of people he wants us to be.

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we may be- come the type of people he wants us to be. 10 #2 Question:

#2

Question: “Brother Wiggins, some of my family have questions about a situation concerning divorce. If a man and woman are married, then they divorce be- cause she leaves him for another man. What are the circumstances for the left man?” Answer: God’s general rule is that divorce is sin- ful; and whoever divorces their spouse and remarries enters an adulterous state. Hear the Savior: “Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery, and the man who marries a divorced woman commits adultery” (Luke 16:18). This general rule is true whether it is the man or the woman. Read from the Master again: “Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery against her. And if she divorces her husband and marries an- other, she commits adultery” (Mark 10:11-12). The idea is that, generally speaking, anyone who divorces their spouse and remarries is guilty of adultery. There is, however, an exception to this general rule. Read from the Lord again: “I tell you that anyone who di- vorces his wife, except for fornication, and marries an- other woman commits adultery” (Matt. 19:9; cf. 5:32). From this statement we learn there is an exception to the general rule. Remember the general rule is that is anyone who divorces their spouse and remarries is guilty of adultery. But now we learn that one may di- vorce their spouse and remarry with God’s approval IF one divorces their spouse for fornication. In other words, if one’s spouse is guilty of illicit sexual activity with another person God allows that guilty person to be divorced and the innocent spouse the right to remarry. In the question above the woman left her husband and committed fornication with her new lover. The husband, who had remained faithful, now has the right to remarry without the fear of committing adultery in God’s sight. I might also mention that the best thing that could happen is that the two be restored in their marriage relationship. The innocent husband, in this case, could forgive his errant wife, and the marriage be restored. One does not have to divorce their unfaithful spouse. On the other hand this might not be possible because of her unwillingness to do remain in the mar-

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The Gospel Journal

riage. Another alternative is that he remain single fol- lowing his divorce. The third option is that he later re- marries. If he should do so he can remarry with the as- surance that he has God’s approval in the second mar- riage; provided he marries someone who also has a God-given right to marry.

#3

Question: “Mr. Wiggins, could Jesus really have yielded to the temptations of Satan? Since there would be no sin in being tempted, and sin only comes when one yields to a temptation, I have a hard time embrac- ing the idea that Jesus could have succumbed to the temptations of Satan. I would appreciate your opinion on this. If he had succumbed, it seems to me that God's plans for man would have been totally thwarted and He would not have been sinless.” Answer: This is a good question and I will offer my thoughts. I take the references to Jesus being tempted at face value. This does not mean that Jesus desired to sin, that Jesus had a proclivity to sin, or that Jesus even wanted to sin. But it does present the con- cept that Satan presented real "offers" for Jesus to go contrary to God's divine plan for him. This seems to be presented in Matthew 4:1-11. The devil was trying to get Jesus to do something against God but Jesus did not yield. Consider Hebrews 4:15. The point here is that we have a high priest who knows exactly what we go through as human beings. Why? Because Jesus was “tempted in all points like we are.” The writer then un- derscores that this happened without sin on Jesus part. Why bring up that Jesus was tempted but did not sin if sin was not a real possibility? As far as Satan offering a threat to the divine scheme of redemption by tempting Jesus that is exactly what the Devil wanted to accom- plish. He wanted to "thwart" God's plan and gave it his best shot. This does not mean that Jesus almost fell into sin; or that he thought about it and later decided against it; or that Jesus was weak and he barely made it through the test in order to be proven. But it does sug- gest that the real presentation of choice was available to go against the scheme that God had in place for him. If not, it is difficult to see how what Jesus did could be called resisting "temptations" presented to him. I be- lieve that in some way the "temptation" of Jesus needs to be taken at face value in order for there to be a real threat from Satan. In some sense Jesus was "tempted like as we are." Otherwise it makes no sense for the Bible to say that Jesus was tempted like we are tempt- ed.

like as we are." Otherwise it makes no sense for the Bible to say that Jesus
like as we are." Otherwise it makes no sense for the Bible to say that Jesus

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The Gospel Journal

July 2014 The Gospel Journal John Moore Satan is as real as God. While some see

John Moore

Satan is as real as God. While some see the devil as nothing more than the figurative embodi- ment of evil, according to the Bible he is an actual being that has power, wisdom, and superior intelli- gence to man (Gen. 1: 1; 3: 1, 2; 2 Cor. 11: 3, Rev. 12: 9). The devil is the archenemy of man, seeking man's spiritual destruction (1 Pet. 5: 6-9) and desires to have souls that he might “sift” them as wheat (Luke 22:31). In the book of Revelation he is por- trayed as a serpent and dragon that once made war with the angels in heaven and now has come to the earth to fight against the church and her children (Rev. 12:17). His title reveals much of what we need to know about him, for the name Satan means “one who is an adversary and opposes another in purpose or act”. The title of Satan is given to this prince of evil spirits, the incorrigible adversary of God and Christ whose goal is to create havoc and make men turn from God to sin. For those seeking joy and peace in their life, and for those who want to make heaven their home, it is imperative that they know and understand what Satan aims to do, and how and in what ways he seeks to operate. In sum, his work involves the following three objectives. First, Satan seeks to devour and destroy. While Jesus came not to destroy man’s soul, but save it (Luke 9:56), the devil, as the antithesis of good, wants nothing more than to wreak havoc among the righteous. In the vivid imagery of 1 Peter 5:8, Satan is described as a roaring lion walking about seeking to devour. Both animals and humans become very driven when hunger strikes. The need to lessen the pains of hunger can be intense, causing a person or animal to do or eat most anything to quiet the sounds of hunger rumbling inside the body. While humans have the capacity to be discriminate in their choices, a lion doesn’t appear to have such inhibi- tions. It walks about indiscriminately seeking to de- vour whatever may cross its path. Souls must like- wise take heed to know that Satan is on the prowl. He aims to devour men’s souls, and his roar of hun- ger ought to produce fear and healthy respect for

of hun- ger ought to produce fear and healthy respect for 12 THE WORK OF SATAN

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THE WORK OF SATAN

what he aims to achieve. An electrician of many years was once asked how it was that he had never had been electrocuted after all those of year of working around the dan- gerous and potentially like-taking power of electric- ity, to which he replied “it all begins with having respect for its power and a full understanding of how it operates.” Indeed, something with this kind of power should be respected for the kind of harm it can produce and likewise all men everywhere would be truly wise to know of the powerful, de- structive work of Satan and what he aims to achieve. We would all do well to understand that he desires to tempt us to sin and thereby threaten our relationship with God. He desires to destroy our faith by agitating us with life’s hardships and fears. The devil was responsible for the introduction of sin into the world as the result of the successful de- ception of Eve (Gen. 3, 1 Tim. 2: 14). Sickness, disappointment, and spiritual alienation from God along with all that is unpleasant are the results of the devil (2 Cor. 12: 7). As seen in Peter's state- ment, the devil definitely has a role and work to perform that involves destroying the faith of others. Second, Satan works to deceive. He knows that if any of us ever saw what sin really is and how it maims and destroys, most would run from the evil it causes and the damnation it brings. Sin is always ugly, but Satan makes it look attractive. As in the case with Adam and Eve, Satan appeals to our ap- petites by promising what he couldn’t possibly de- liver. He lies about what is true and seeks to turn us away from the commands of God through his de- ceptive schemes. His major tactic involves pervert- ing the truth, for he was a liar from the beginning:

the father of lies (John 8:44). Because truth is what will deliver a soul from bondage (John 8:32), and since Jesus is the truth that leads one into eternal life (John 14:6; 1 Pet. 1:22), the devil specializes in falsehoods and deceit about the Bible. When compared to the revealed Word of God, one can easily see the lies being em-

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The Gospel Journal

braced by others. Every day, friends of ours are be- ing deceived by the lies of secular humanism and the religious doctrines of men. Whether it is an at- tempt to pervert the simple plan of salvation through the false doctrine of faith alone (see Jam. 2:14- 26 ), or the lies of classical liberalism which attacks the inspiration of scripture, the devil as the father of all lies is doing all he can to pervert and undermine the truth that saves men’s souls. It never ceases to amaze me to know of the kinds of lies being told by others about God, the Bible, or His church, for the devil is skilled at misapplying scripture (Matt. 4:6- 7) and adept at getting others to twist its meaning (2 Pet. 3:16). Third, Satan seeks to deter us through the work of others. In Acts 13 Luke records the story of a man named Sergius Paulus who desired to hear the word of God from the mouths of Paul and Barnabas, two great missionaries of the Lord. However, his efforts to hear the word were being interrupted by a sorcerer named Elymas who sought to “turn away the deputy from the faith” (Acts 13:8). Likewise today, there are many who are playing the role of Elymas by turning their friends and family away from the truth. Either through their willful ignorance of God’s word, or through their selfish and rebel- lious actions, they are keeping their friends and fam- ily from hearing and obeying the soul saving mes- sage of the Gospel. When any one of us plays the role of a modern day Elymas by deterring one from hearing the word, we need to know that we are in- volved in the work of Satan and could be properly identified as a “child of the devil” and “enemy of righteousness” (Acts 13:10). While Satan’s work is through the spread of falsehoods, may none of us be guilty of either spreading a lie or living in such a way that would deter others from knowing truth. The devil should not ever be underestimated. He is a crafty chameleon, and diabolical demon, and subtle serpent. He is also without pity and compas- sion. He wants you and he will do whatever he can to have you! Let none of us therefore be ignorant of his devices, lest he gain the advantage over us (2 Cor. 2:11). With God’s help we can conquer the devil and defeat his evil ways. By knowing truth we can defeat the devil just as Jesus resisted the devil’s temptation by quoting scripture (Matt. 4:1-11). Truth exposes error and light is exposes darkness, so let each of quench all the fiery darts of the wick- ed one by arming ourselves with the gospel armor and go to war with the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God (Eph. 6:10-12).

Help us double the sub- scriptions of the TGJ by the end of 2014!!! If each reader of TGJ would sent us one new subscription, we would double in one month, surely with your help we can do it in one year!

would sent us one new subscription, we would double in one month, surely with your help
would sent us one new subscription, we would double in one month, surely with your help

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July 2014

The Gospel Journal

July 2014 The Gospel Journal Don Walker DO DEMONS POSSESS PEOPLE TODAY? Though one familiar with

Don Walker

DO DEMONS POSSESS PEOPLE TODAY?

Though one familiar with the teaching of the New Testament might be tempted to simply answer in the negative (and in the end a resounding “NO!” will be the answer this writer will present), it would be of greater value to consider not only the above question, but other questions that are associated with the question posed in our title. “What are demons?” may be a question some would ask. If we answer the above question in the negative, we could follow with the following question. “Have demons ever possessed people in this world?” Ultimately our question should be “What does the Bible say about these matters?” Though our space is limited, we will attempt to give a b biblical answer with the hope that what is presented will be of benefit for all who take the time to read this article. Let us begin by addressing the question, “What are demons?” In the KJV the first reference we encounter concerning our question is Matthew 4:24. Of Jesus this passage says, “And his fame went throughout all Syria: and they brought unto him all sick people that were taken with divers diseases and torments, and those which were possessed with devils, and those which were lunatick, and those that had the palsy; and he healed them.” The ASV has the word “demons” in the place of “devils.” The Greek word for “devils” as stated in the KJV is not diabolos, which should be translated “devil,” but rather it is a form of the word daimonizomai. This word and other forms are found over seventy-five times in the New Testament. It means “to be possessed by a demon—‘to be demon possessed.’” In Matthew 7:22 we read of exactly who it was that was possessing individuals in the first century. “Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils?” The word translated “devils” is the Greek word daimonion and it means “an evil supernatural being or spirit—‘demon, evil spirit.’” We must recognize that “Satan” is the “devil” and the “demons” are ones that appear to do his bidding. In secular writings there are attempts in describing

In secular writings there are attempts in describing 14 these that are revealed in Scripture they

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these that are revealed in Scripture they were viewed as “intelligent beings” “somewhere between the human and the divine.” Next we ask “If Demons do not possess individuals today, have they ever possessed individuals?” Biblically we would have to answer in the affirmative. However, there are those who would answer in the negative. William Barclay wrote:

We need not argue whether demons were realities or not. One thing certain is that in the time of Jesus people believed in them with terrified intensity. If a man believes he is ill, he will be ill. If a man believed that he was demon-possessed, then, illusion or no, he was definitely ill in mind and body (1976, 26). Of course such a conclusion is an affront to the New Testament and displays a poor view of our Saviour Who most certainly encountered individuals who were possessed by such as recorded in the divine record. Scripture confirms clearly and often in the Gospel accounts that demons did in the first century possess individuals. Finally, we will answer the question posed in our title and explain Biblically why we have answered in such a way. “Do demons possess people today?” The answer to that question is “No!” In establishing the validity of this answer, we would first consider “What was the purpose of demon possession in the first century?” Though there is no explicit Biblical answer to this question, there is information that may help us in, at least, a consideration of the question. When Jesus was upon the earth, He displayed a miraculous power over every arena – disease, elements of nature, and even death. He also displayed power over the demonic realm when he cast out demons. Thus, there was in a very real way a proclamation of His power and authority having no boundaries or limitations. It may be this was the reason for such upon the earth. With that in mind, we would remember in the first century others possessed miraculous power and

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The Gospel Journal

exercised such powers to cast out demons. Mark 16:20 and Hebrews 2:4 tell us it was for the purpose of confirming the w Word as being from Heaven and not from men. Just as clearly, the Bible teaches that the miracles would cease at the close of the first century when completed revelation was accomplished (1 Cor. 13:8-13; Eph. 4:8-16). It is only reasonable that with the cessation of the miraculous abilities of Christ’s servants so too would the broadened arena of Satan and his demon’s activated, which was allowed by God, be narrowed and the ability demons had to possess individuals would be removed. The claims today that are made concerning such things are out of line and evidence of the fact that Satan is a great deceiver (Rev. 12:9). When men love not the truth (2 Thess. 2:10), they present themselves as prime candidates for such deception. As we consider these things, may we study our Bibles more and more with a determination to be doers of the word to the glory of our God.

to be doers of the word to the glory of our God. Continued from page 8—Grider

Continued from page 8—Grider While he was a righteous man before his trials, I am confident he was an even better man after his testing. God can make us stronger through the trials we face. We learn much more in the valley than we could ever learn on the mountaintop. James continues, “knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience” (Jas. 1:3). All of us have known people who suffered what seemed like unbearable pain. It would be difficult to find one who suffered more than did Job. What an example he serves. “Indeed we count them blessed who endure. You have heard of the perseverance of Job and seen the end intended by the Lord—that the Lord is very compassionate and merciful” (Jas. 5:11). Fourth, God abundantly blessed his servant after his trial. Remember that Job was blessed abundantly after enduring such pain and affliction. The day came when Satan could afflict no more. God doubled the blessings upon Job (Job 42:12). He even gave him seven more children, after his other children had gone on to be with the Lord (Job 42:13). Dear Christian friend, no matter what heartache and grief you suffer, endure to the end and keep on serving the Lord. “And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do

not lose heart” (Gal. 6:9).

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July 2014

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Continued from page 9—Stockton 3:1-5). He twisted God’s commands and altered the truth to make the lie “sound reasonable.” A successful liar and deceiver must know facts well enough to twist them, use techniques to manipulate people, and exer- cise a good memory; Satan is certainly the author of these methods! Satan is opportunistic. Satan cannot override man’s free will, but uses many devices to distract the lost from obeying the gospel. Jesus described Satan’s opportunism in the Parable of the Sower: “…The seed is the word of God. Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved” (Luke 8:11-12). Peter warned of Satan’s inces- sant search for increasing the number of lost souls: “… Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour…” (1 Pet. 5:8). A hungry lion does not attack the strongest, but the weakest prey. Satan actively tar- gets our weaknesses and vulnerabilities with worldly, fleshly temptations (1 John 2:16-17)…which we can resist! Satan is enraged. He knows from the word of God his inescapable eternal destiny (Matt. 25:41-46). Satan hates with spiteful indignation the one, true God, but like the devils, he also “trembles” (Jam. 2:19). He is maddened that he failed to defeat God’s plan to redeem mankind through His Son (Col. 1:12-13). He is furious that Jesus Christ, through His death and resurrection, destroyed “…him that had the power of death, that is, the devil…” (Heb. 2:14) and that “…For this purpose the Son of God was manifested, that he might destroy the works of the devil” (1 John 3:8). All he can do until Jesus returns is to lash out at God in his rage by cheat- ing as many people from a heavenly reward as he pos- sibly can. Brethren, be warned and be vigilant!

Stan A. Stockton currently serves as an elder in the Schertz church of Christ and is Director of the Annual Schertz Lectures. He married Kathy (Hyback) 30 years ago, and they have two sons, one daughter, and one daughter-in-law. He served for 24 years in the U.S. Air Force as an Imagery Intelligence Officer (retired in 2005), and continues to work as an Intelligence Ana- lyst. He is a graduate of Oregon State University (B.Sc. General Science – Earth Sciences), University of Okla- homa (M.A. Communication), and American Military University (M.A. Ancient and Classical History).

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Military University (M.A. Ancient and Classical History). 16 The Gospel Journal would make a great gift

The Gospel Journal would make a great gift for the end of the year present. If you are thinking about something to get for a birthday present, why not give The Gospel Journal as a gift?

present. If you are thinking about something to get for a birthday present, why not give

July 2014

The Gospel Journal

God Is Worthy of Praise

By June Smith

When you come to the end of the day, and you bow your head to pray, You thank the Lord for his watch and care, and for the goodness He did share.

You know that it was He who stood by your side, when the waves of life were at high tide. You thank Him and praise his name, you know without him life wouldn't be the same.

Your life, your love, your trust you fully give, when day by day with him you live. No one is greater and more worthy than He, to serve Him is the best that you can be.

He is your protector, counselor and friend, and you give your pledge to serve Him to the end. You know deep in your heart for all your days He is worthy of your devotion and your praise.

Jesus Christ, in spite of the claims of many atheists and other opponents of Scripture,
Jesus Christ, in spite of the claims of many atheists
and other opponents of Scripture, was an actual historical
person! The fact that he lived is one echoed through the
and other opponents of Scripture, was an actual historical person! The fact that he lived is

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July 2014 The Gospel Journal Affirming Our Faith In The Scriptures “The Biblical Credentials of Inspiration

Affirming Our Faith In The Scriptures

“The Biblical Credentials of Inspiration Part 3” Lesson #6

Melvin L. Otey

Learning Objectives

1. The reader will describe the implications of predictive prophecy on the question of the Bible’s inspiration.

2. The reader will briefly survey select examples of accurate predictive prophecies in the Bible.

3. The reader will consider the implications of the

Bible’s predictive prophecies on Christian faith. The word “prophecy” refers to the content of either forth-telling or foretelling activity. Most prophecy in Scripture is of the former, generic variety, which we typically call “preaching.” However, we are principally concerned with material of the latter ilk, that is, predictions of future events. The Bible unambiguously predicted the rise and fall of great powers, the desolation of notable places, and the emergence and activity of important people. Repeated accuracy along these lines is necessarily undergirded by miracles of knowledge because human beings simply do not know the future. When aggregated, then, the fulfillment of these predictions offers powerful corroboration of the Bible’s claims of inspiration. Embarking upon a discussion of the Bible’s predictive prophecies, a note of caution is warranted. Some make the mistake of discounting the possibility of their authenticity because they are incredulous about supernatural matters. They would rather go to incredible lengths in denying the evidence rather than embrace the implications of it. Others err in the other direction by finding a prediction in “every minute detail of typology and prophetic utterance” (Geisler and Nix 119). Neither approach is warranted. Here, we will briefly consider a select few of many instances where the Scriptures foretold future events.

Prophecies About Powers Inspired men made correct predictions about political powers. For example, several rightly prophesied that the Hebrews would be taken away into captivity and subsequently restored (see, e.g., Isa. 11:11; Amos 9:8-14; Zeph. 3:19-20). Similarly, Jeremiah forecast the fall of the Babylonian Empire, the world power of his day (Jer. 51:24-64), as did Daniel, who additionally predicted the ascension and demise of three successor kingdoms (Dan.

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ascension and demise of three successor kingdoms (Dan. 18 2:26-45). Today, we know the Persians, Greeks

2:26-45). Today, we know the Persians, Greeks and Romans followed the Babylonians over a span of 500 years. Notably, the Scriptures also predicted the establishment of God’s spiritual kingdom on earth during the reign of Daniel’s fourth empire, which most readily identify as the Roman Empire today (see, e.g., 2 Sam. 7:12-14; Dan. 2:44). The entire New Testament depicts the fulfillment of this promise via the life, death, and resurrection of Jesus Christ and the work of the Holy Spirit (see, e.g., Mark 9:1; John 18:36; Col. 1:12-13; Rev. 1:9). Honest people, even those otherwise inclined to discount the significance of the events described in the New Testament, must acknowledge that the events snugly fit the timing forecast in the Old Testament.

Prophecies About Places Inspired men made correct predictions about significant places as well. As Daniel forecast the demise of the Babylonian Empire, Isaiah foretold the obliteration of its well-fortified capital. Babylon was the largest city in the world at the time, yet he said it would be overthrown and perpetually uninhabited (Isa. 13:19-21). The notion would have seemed more incredible when it was written than announcing a similar fate for our own New York City. Ultimately, the great metropolis was toppled and, today, 2,700 years after Isaiah lived, the area where it once stood is still an extensive field of ruins south of Baghdad in Iraq. Jesus prophesied that Jerusalem, the principle city of Israel, would be utterly destroyed (Matt. 24; Luke 21). Regarding its magnificent temple complex, He said, “There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down” (Matt. 24:2). By mid-August of AD 70, less than forty years after Jesus’ statements, the prophecy was fulfilled. An eyewitness, the historian Josephus, described the extent of the damage as follows:

“there was left nothing to make those that came thither believe it had even been inhabited” (Wars 7.1.1). Clearly, then, Jesus was correct.

Prophecies About People In addition to powers and places, inspired prophets

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made correct predictions about key people. Consider the rule and benevolence of Persia’s Cyrus the Great. Isaiah, whom most scholars agree wrote in the early 7th century BC, called him by name and announced his instrumental role in restoring Jerusalem and the temple (Isa. 44:24- 45:6). Later texts confirm that he, in fact, allowed Jews to return in the first year of his reign. He even returned the sacred vessels Nebuchadnezzar had taken from the temple when he sacked the city (2 Chron. 36:22-23; Ezra 1). Of course, Isaiah was right. The Cyrus Cylinder, which toured the United States in 2013, records Cyrus’ decree freeing deported people after he captured Babylon in 538 or 539 BC. The collection of predictive prophecies concerning the Christ, which some number above three hundred, are the most important and impressive concerning individuals. Among other things, the Scriptures presented Him as the seed of a woman (Gen. 3:15), born of a virgin (Isa. 7:14) in the city of Bethlehem (Mic. 5:2), similar to Moses (Deut. 18:15), and a descendent of Abraham (Gen. 12:3), Judah (Gen. 49:10), and David (1 Sam. 7:12-14). Beyond such details, though, there is a larger sense in which all of the Old Testament Scriptures collectively presented a mosaic image of the Messiah which only came into sharp focus once they were all fulfilled in the person of Jesus hundreds of years after they were penned (Luke 24:25-27, 24:44; Acts 3:24).

Concluding Observations The Scriptures confirm what we naturally deduce regarding the significance of these and other fulfillments, i.e., that accurate foretelling is indicative of divine activity while inaccurate predictions would conclusively disprove it. For example, Moses wrote, “And if thou say in thy heart, How shall we know the word which Jehovah hath not spoken? when a prophet speaketh in the name of Jehovah, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which Jehovah hath not spoken: the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously, thou shalt not be afraid of him” (Deut. 18:21-22). Similarly, Jeremiah 28:9 says, “The prophet that prophesieth of peace, when the word of the prophet shall come to pass, then shall the prophet be known, that Jehovah hath truly sent him.” Superhuman influence is required for consistent, accurate forecasts of future events. Hence, the collection of fulfilled predictive prophecies is corroborative of its inspiration, and Christian faith rests upon the testimony of unique writings derived from a source who clearly knows the future as well as the past. The inspired writings themselves identify this source as God. Indeed, He is the only possible source for reliable information regarding the future. He alone “confirmeth the word of his servant, and performeth the counsel of his messengers” (Isa. 44:26). He alone “declared the former

things from the beginning pass” (Isa. 48:3).

and they came to

Questions to Ponder

1. Why is repeated accuracy regarding predictive prophecy consistent with the Bible’s claims of inspiration?

2. What became of the Babylonian Empire following the prophecies of Jeremiah and Daniel?

3. Is there independent corroboration of the fulfillment of Jesus’ prediction regarding the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple?

4. What physical proof verifies fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecy regarding Cyrus?

5. What are the implications of the Bible’s predictive prophecies for Christian faith?

Works Cited The British Museum. “The Cyrus Cylinder travels to the United States.” http://www.britishmuseum.org/about_us/

news_and_press/press_releases/2012/

cyrus_cylinder_travels_to_us.aspx (accessed 6/21/2014). Geisler, Norman and W.E. Nix. A General Introduction to the Bible. Chicago: Moody Press, 1968. Josephus. Josephus: The Complete Works. Trans. William Whiston. Nashville: Nelson, 1998.

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July 2014 The Gospel Journal Daniel F. Cates THE HISTORIANS OF HIS STORY Part V: Juvenal

Daniel F. Cates

THE HISTORIANS OF HIS STORY

Part V: Juvenal

Decimus Junius Juvenalis, commonly called Juvenal, was born, traditionally, around A.D. 55-60 and died sometime after A.D. 138 probably in Aquinum near modern Monte- Cassino, Italy. He was a writer of satires--sixteen of which are extant. Not much is known of Juvenal, for he

did not reveal much about himself and neither did others-- until the fourth century--have much to say about him. Due to an inscription in Aquinum which mentioned the name

Juvenalis, it is thought by some that he served at

nius

various times as commander of a Dalmatian Roman cohort in Britain, as mayor of Aquinum, and even as priest of Vespasian's imperial cult; however, another could have shared the name. It is likewise thought by some that Juvenal spent some time in exile, perhaps in Egypt, but proof or particulars of such an exile are unavailable. What is certain of Juvenal is that he was a Roman who lived during the first century A.D., and that he was neither Jewish nor Christian. The latter things are sure given his unfavorable references to Jewish law (XIV.100-106)1, shortcomings (III.15), and stereotypes (VI.159-161,542-548) and his speaking of the burning of Rome so as to allege that Christians were responsible (VIII.232-239; cf I.155). When one reads the satires of Juvenal, he finds a writer who is practically if not actually stoic. Juvenal did not care for pretense, matters of business, or governmental corruption. On the other hand, Juvenal was more cynical than the typical stoic might be, and that cynicism comes out in his writing as anger, or disgust, at Rome ("for who could endure this monstrous city" [I 30,31]), and at Roman society in general. Apparently, that anger drove him to write; as he said, "Though talent be wanting, yet indignation will drive me to verse, such as I- -or any scribbler--may still command. All human endeavours, men's prayers, fears, angers, pleasures, joys and pursuits, these make the mixed mash of my verse" (I.79-83). What did Juvenal write? He wrote satires which presented a bleak picture of human existence (X.169- 174); he wrote satires that hinted at Roman pride and

ethnocentricity (X.148-188) while addressing such characters as Hannibal who was the bane of Rome (X.148

such characters as Hannibal who was the bane of Rome (X.148 20 -168), Alexander who could

20

-168), Alexander who could conquer the world but be contained in a grave (X.169-174), and Xerxes who whipped the Hellespont and Herodotus who recorded it (X.174-188); he also wrote satires which were a frank condemnation of Roman excess (VI.290-293) and immorality (cf II.121-129) concluding that "even among the dead Rome stands dishonoured" (II.160-170). While he wrote about the danger of a guilty conscience (XIII.192-197, 209-235), he showed no respect for the religions of his day (II.147-151; XV.1-13)--even Roman ones (VI.558-560, cf 549-558). While he may not have intended to do so, he also wrote of matters corresponding to Biblical events, providing a reference to the Greek version of the flood (I.84-86) and providing a picture of Berenice and Agrippa (VI.156-161; cf Acts 25:23). What is the value of Juvenal today? Much of what Juvenal wrote nearly two thousand years ago is as poignant today as it was then and is as valuable a commentary on modern society as it was on classical society. A modern study of Juvenal demonstrates that what some might call a "Judeo-Christian" ethic does not have to come from Scripture; rather, it can simply come from experience as nature bares out the morality of Scripture. Juvenal differentiated between what was at the beginning given beast and man--the latter receiving the ability to show mercy (XV.131-151). He condemned the emperor Domitian (A.D. 81-96) for committing incestuous adultery with his niece and having her abort the offspring (II.32-37). He condemned the emperor Otho (A.D. 69) for "peeking at himself [in his mirror] to see how his armor looked before riding into battle " (II.99- 101). He condemned the emperor Nero (A.D. 54-68) as a murderer (VIII.212-230). He condemned Rome, writing that "even among the dead Rome stands dishonoured" (II.158,159); why? because "these conquered tribes abhor the vices that flourish in their conquerors' capital" (II.161,162). He condemned the apathy and worldliness of his society, writing, "Now we are suffering the evils of too-long peace. Luxury deadlier than any armed invader, lies like an incubus upon us still, avenging the world we brought to heel" (VI.290-293). He condemned male worshippers of Athena who practiced

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their religion in homosexual orgies (II.86-96). Perhaps his greatest commentary on society--from a perspective which would surely be viewed as Scripturally biased had it come from a believer in Jehovah--was one derived simply from natural observation: In condemning homosexuality, he wrote,

This is the kind of talk we soon shall hear: 'I must go down-town tomorrow first thing: a special engagement.' 'What's happening?' 'Need you ask? I’m going to a wedding. Old So- and- so’s got his boy-friend To the altar at last— just a few close friends are invited.’ We have only to wait now: soon such things will be done, And done in public: male brides will yearn for a mention In the daily gazette. But still they have one big problem Of a painful kind: they can’t keep their marriage solvent By producing babies. Nature knows best: their desires have no physical issue [emphasis added-DFC]" (II.134-

144).

It is extremely likely that Juvenal never had read Romans 1:26,27; however, through natural observation alone he could write a thought along the lines of that Paul was inspired there to write:

For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.

In writing his satires, Juvenal was providing a commentary on the immorality and excesses of Roman

as a member of that society. It is interesting how

closely some of his commentary accords with a Biblical

approach to such immorality!

society

1Due to the inconsistent numbering of lines among various translations of Juvenal's Satires, the numbering maybe a line, or even a few, different in other translations; generally--though not solely--this writer uses the translation by Peter Green (Baltimore, MD: Penguin Books Inc., 1970).

not solely--this writer uses the translation by Peter Green (Baltimore, MD: Penguin Books Inc., 1970). 21
not solely--this writer uses the translation by Peter Green (Baltimore, MD: Penguin Books Inc., 1970). 21

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ONE WOMAN’S PERSPECTIVE

July 2014 The Gospel Journal ONE WOMAN’S PERSPECTIVE Annette B. Cates “Who will be victorious?” is

Annette B. Cates

“Who will be victorious?” is a rhetorical question; we already know the answer. The righteous followers of God will defeat Satan. “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heed” (Gen. 3:15). However, no victory is won without some skirmishes and outright battles that must be fought. The only time Satan can win is when our defenses weaken and we allow him to forge ahead. What are some areas Satan uses to defeat us, and how can we fortify to gain the victory? Satan wins when we fall to temptation. We can overcome. “Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life which the Lord hath promised to them that love him” (Jam. 1:12). Our temptations come through the lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes, and the pride of life. These avenues lead one into immorality and into doing whatever it takes to acquire anything we want. Temptation begins with a thought which is allowed to grow. We know it is wrong, but we begin to rationalize: “it may be sin but…”; “I deserve to have…”; “no one will know….” Soon we are in full- blown sin. Temptation can be stopped at any point, the sooner the better and easier. “Can a man take fire in his bosom, and his clothes not be burned?” (Pro. 6:27). Christian, stay away from the fire! Do not let Satan win this battle. Satan wins when we fail to do that which we know to do, or when we simply do not care enough to be involved in the work of the church. “Therefore to him that knoweth to do good and doeth it not, to him it is sin” (Jam. 4:17). For example, we may have obeyed the first principles, but not understand the importance of regular worship. In this case, Satan wins in two ways: 1) God does not receive the glory and praise due Him; 2) we do not receive the edification and fellowship with others of like- minded faith, thus stunting our own personal

others of like- minded faith, thus stunting our own personal 22 WHO WILL BE VICTORIOUS? spiritual

22

WHO WILL BE VICTORIOUS?

spiritual growth. There are many tools in Satan’s war chest. One of these is apathy or indifference. If he can convince Christians merely to give lip-service to God instead of the heart, he has won a battle. We are to be “…a ”

living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God

12:1). According to Peter, we are “lively [living] stones,” and a “holy priesthood” (1 Pet. 2:5). Jesus told the Pharisees, “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! “Woe unto you, for ye pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have omitted the weightier matters of the law, judgment, mercy, and faith: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone” (Mat. 23:23). These Jews were doing as little as possible, and were proud of their “obedience.” They were letting Satan have the victory. None of us can do everything. We have varying abilities, but we are winning over Satan when we are active in the service of the Lord. It may seem to be little, but the widow’s two mites were little compared to the much cast into the treasury by the wealthy people. Observing this, Jesus taught His disciples (and all of us) the lesson that it is not the amount, but the motive and attitude of heart in the obedient that matters (Mark 12:41-44). Satan wins when we allow him to ruin our influence for good. We have influence in practically every area of life: our attitude, our conduct, the ethics of our dealings with others, and our faithfulness to the church. We influence everyone we meet: acquaintances, friends, co-workers, neighbors, and family. What is the impact of our influence? Solomon said, “The path of the just is as the shining light…” (Pro. 4:18). In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus expressed the same thought. ““Ye are the salt of the earth… the light of the world…Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” (Mat. 5:13-16). The impression we make before others should be such that God gets the

(Rom.

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victory, not Satan. For Christians to have the victory, we must never let our defenses down. We must be vigilant, aware that Satan “as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour” (1 Pet. 5:8). We do this by staying as far away as possible from sin, and putting God first in our daily life (Mat. 6:33). How do we put God first? We lay the foundation by learning God’s Word and applying its principles. When Jesus was tempted, He responded to the devil with Scripture, “it is written” and quoted from the Old Testament. If one does not know the Word, he/she cannot go to that resource to rebuke Satan. Such verses as Philippians 3:13,14; 4:13, and Romans 8:38,39give the believer comfort and strength. The Bible has the answer we just need to apply its words on a daily basis. Next, we need to commune with God through regular prayer and worship. Yes, God is omniscient; He knows our needs even before we ask. In prayer we have the privilege of praising Him. We can ask for God’s protection and guidance. We ask Him to meet our needs. Through prayer we ask for God’s forgiveness when we sin. In prayer, we yield ourselves to God. These simple guidelines were given by Jesus in His Sermon on the Mount (Mat. 6:8-13). When His disciples asked Him to “teach us to pray” (Luke 11:1). Worship also allows us to commune with God. Some seem to expect worship to be a spectator sport. No, no, no. Worship brings us closer to God and to our fellow Christians. Worship is a solemn occasion. We should approach it as such. Through the elements of worship we sing praise to God; we give of our means; we learn through the sermon; we pray to God; we observe the Lord’s Supper commemorating the death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord by partaking of the Lord’s Supper. The Bible shows the importance of our worship, “God is a spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth” (John 4:24). Bible knowledge, prayer, and worship would be in vain if we neglect living as Christians. We treat others s we would like to be treated (Mat. 7:12). In Micah 6:8, we read that God has “showed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God” (Micah 6:8). At the end Satan and his followers will be the losers. The victory will go to those who remain faithful to Him. We won!

victory will go to those who remain faithful to Him. We won! Preorder your bound volume

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EXPOSITORY PREACHING

July 2014 The Gospel Journal EXPOSITORY PREACHING Donald Z. Underwood THE GOD OF ALL GRACE (1

Donald Z. Underwood

THE GOD OF ALL GRACE (1 PET. 5:6-11)

In 1 Peter 5:6-11 we read, Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time, casting all your care upon Him, for He cares for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world. But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you. To Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen. The God of all grace is the God of mercy and comfort. Our Lord will provide for all things in life. In Christ we are thankful for all God has done for us, we are grateful for the church of Christ, our jobs, homes and families, and so much more that our heavenly Father has provided for us. Within the context of 1 Peter 5:6-11 we read of several truths. We are encouraged to humble ourselves before God. Also, God cares for us in this world, that He has provided a pathway to our home in heaven. Life in this world is challenging and filled with trials and tribulations, and on top of all of these events in our lives we are to resist the devil. Finally, we read where we must praise and glorify our Lord and this we must do.

We learn from the text to humble ourselves before the throne of our heavenly Father We must humble ourselves before the throne of our heavenly Father and when we do, He will lift us up. In Matthew 23:12 Jesus spoke to the multitudes and His disciples and taught them the following words, And whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted. Within our text of study, Peter would echo the same teaching after our Lord’s death, burial and resurrection. God will resist the proud of this world, but He will give the greater or more grace unto the humble. Therefore we must humble ourselves before the Creator of our world and He will lift us up.

before the Creator of our world and He will lift us up. 24 (Jam. 4:6, 10)

24

(Jam. 4:6, 10) The servant of God learns the quality of humility or meekness through submission unto the will of God, in turn we submit unto one another.

The God of all grace cares for souls In verse seven of the text we are instructed to cast all of cares or concerns into the hands of God. Casting our cares or concerns means to deposit our cares and concerns into the presence of God. We have all experienced various concerns in life and as Christians we know to take our cares to the throne of His grace and make our deposit of cares into His loving hands. Likewise we help our fellow man to do the same, in doing so we make our world a better place. The Psalmist wrote a similar thought, Cast your burden on the L , And He shall sustain you; He shall never permit the righteous to be moved. (Psalm 55:22) In Luke 12:6, 24, and 28 we read how God cares for the sparrow, raven and the grass of the field, and He cares for us too. We were created to be God’s friends and that is why He cares so much for us. God loves all souls and desires the salvation of all souls.

We must resist the devil We must actively fight against Satan and his ways or influence. There are three words found within verses eight and nine that will aid us in our war with Satan. We must be sober in the fight against Satan. To be sober means to be serious minded about Satan’s activities. Today we see his influence more and more in our world than in times past (Eph. 6:16). The second word of wisdom in our battle is vigilance. To be vigilant means to be watchful and on guard for Satan’s attacks, we must be wise to his ways (Eph. 4:14). The final word is to resist him. James is clear about this matter to resist, Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. (Jam. 4:7) If we resist the devil, he will flee or run from us, but we must resist. Friends do not leave a forwarding address to sin.

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The God of all grace is to receive glory In verses 10 and 11 we must praise the God of heaven. Like in the previous two verses the final two of our text contains several words to help us to glorify our Lord. There is the promise God will perfect us but only in Christ for no defect shall remain in you (2 Tim. 3:16- 17). God will establish us in Christ, that is, nothing will shake us (2 John 9). In Christ we will be strengthened and we can overcome any adverse force in life. Paul told the church at Philippi these words I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. (Phil. 4:13) The final word is settle you, that is, in Christ we will become established or set in concrete spiritually. In 1 Corinthians 15:58 we read, Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord. Hence, we are immovable, that is, settled or set as concrete. As a result of our doing the will of our Lord, the God of glory will be praised forever.

Conclusion We have learned several truths from our brief study of 1 Peter 5:6-11. First of all, we must humble ourselves before the Almighty God. Secondly, the God of all grace cares for souls. Furthermore, if heaven is to be our home we must resist the Devil. Finally, the God of all grace and mercy (2 Cor. 1:3-4) is to be exalted and glorified.

Donald Z. Underwood is the Minister for the Lemon Grove church of Christ. He serves as an instructor for the Online Academy of Biblical Studies, www.oabs.org He teaches Old Testament history: Joshua through II Chronicles, fall and spring semesters. He does international and national work. He is the author of several teaching tracts and brochures. He has authored a poetry book on friendship. Donald has also conducted a public debate with a Baptist preacher, it can be found at the oabs.org website. www.lemongrovechurchofchrist.com

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GEMS FROM THE GREEK

July 2014 The Gospel Journal GEMS FROM THE GREEK Wayne Price In 1 Corinthians 5:11, the

Wayne Price

In 1 Corinthians 5:11, the apostle Paul delivers an edict that brothers in Christ who live certain types of sinful lifestyles are to judged (see v. 12). These comments are not directed to non-Christians, but rather to those who are Christians (i.e., a brother, etc.). The apostle has been dealing with the issue of sexual immorality since the beginning of this 5th chapter (see verses 1-5, 7, 9, and 10-12). We expect to see fornicators in the world (i.e. without), but not in the church (i.e. within). In Ephesians 5:3, the same inspired writer penned these words: "But fornication, and all uncleanness, or covetousness, let it not be once named among you, as becometh saints." Obviously, Paul is not condemning the verbal pronouncing of these sins (i.e., "the naming of them"), but rather the practice of such sins. Oddly enough, we seem to be more eager to withdraw from a brother who is a fornicator than one who is guilty of covetousness! Have you ever experienced the withdrawing of fellowship from a brother who was greedy or covetous (vss. 1 Cor. 5:11)? How is covetousness gauged? Where is the line drawn when a brother is guilty and when he is not guilty? But the question arises regarding what is to be done when relatives are involved in these matters. Bro. Guy N. Woods writes in Questions and Answers, Vol. 2 (p. 33-34) these words: "It seems clear that Paul was not alluding to a relationship involving husband and wife in the passage (1 Cor. 5:11). The laws of God are never in conflict; all truth is harmonious with itself, and the principles

26

all truth is harmonious with itself, and the principles 26 NO, NOT TO EAT! under which

NO, NOT TO EAT!

under which God ordains we are to live are never contradictory. Wives have duties to their husbands - whether they are Christians are not - and these duties harmonize with their obligations as well. Marriage relationships were designed of God to take precedence over all other relationships; and a situation later arising must be understood in light of this fact. The Christian wife should therefore continue to live with her husband and use her "

influence to bring him to repentance

Woods is dealing with "extenuating circumstances," and this fact extends to other family members as well, does it not? Some have concluded that the phrase "No, not to eat" refers to eating the Lord's Supper, but this verb in the New Testament usually is used in connection with an ordinary meal. It is found in four other verses in the N.T. with this meaning, three times in Luke's writings (Luke 15:2; Acts 10:41 and 11:3) and is used twice by Paul (1 Cor. 5:11; and Gal. 2:12). But now the question is this: Is Paul condemning eating with a sinning Christian, or eating with the same and giving him the impression that you are sanctioning and approving of his lifestyle? Surely we can see a grave inconsistency in refusing to eat with him, but inviting him to play golf next Saturday! If we go to a basketball game with him, play dominoes with him, or go hunting with him, why would it be wrong to eat with him? The answer ought be that the prohibition should apply to ANY social relationship with him that would

Bro.

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give him the idea that you approve of his lifestyle, should it not? But this brother should NOT be ignored, and banished from all interaction ("keeping

company") with Christians. What Paul wrote in his first letter to these Corinthians they obeyed, and it worked (see 2 Cor. 2:6). Notice that this same Paul wrote the

Thessalonians:

word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed" (2 Thess. 3:15). Paul continues "Yet count him not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother"? (2 Thess. 3:16). How can that be accomplished if the two of you never communicate with each other? Which brings us to this question: Can a brother participate in playing golf (or go to a basketball game, or go hunting, or play dominoes) with a sinning church member without giving him the impression that he sanctions his sinful lifestyle? Assuredly! When is that? Answer:

Whenever we admonish him in the process! (2 Thess. 3:16). How can we admonish a person without communicating with him? It is important to remember that Paul (1 Cor. 10:27) and even Christ (Luke 15:2) do not object to eating and drinking with non-Christians. Yet Christians eating with Christians guilty of flagrant sin appears to be giving the latter an endorsement to their conduct. There is something involved here that is more than merely eating with a person, and that is the element of appearing to sanction their sinful behavior! It would seem that this is illustrative of any relationship which appears to condone unrighteous conduct on the part of an erring brother. However, let it never be forgotten that this cannot refer to total non- communication, for then it would be impossible to "admonish him as a

brother" (2 Thess. 3:15).

" if any man obey not our

then it would be impossible to " admonish him as a brother " (2 Thess. 3:15).
then it would be impossible to " admonish him as a brother " (2 Thess. 3:15).

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Continued from page 6—Goring to confirm that such a revolt did take place. In two separate passages, reference is made to just such a revolt. The apostle Peter said that “God spared not angels when they sinned, but cast them down to hell, and committed them to pits of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment” (2 Pet. 2:4). Another inspired New Testament writer wrote: “And angels that kept not their own principality, but left their proper habitation, he hath kept in everlasting bonds under darkness unto the judgment of the great day” (Jude 6). Since the Bible also refers to Satan as “the prince of demons” (Matt. 12:24), and speaks of “the devil and his angels” (Matt. 25:41, emp. added), the only possible conclusion is that the devil is the leader of a group of angels who rebelled against God and were therefore expelled from heaven to eventually spend eternity in hell. It should also be observed that correctly speaking, there is only one devil. The devil is the very epitome of evil and is responsible for all temptation (Eph. 6:11, John 8:44). The Bible presents Satan as a real spiritual being who is opposed to all that is good and is tremendously powerful (but not as powerful as God). We first encounter him in the third chapter of Genesis as he takes the form of a serpent to tempt Eve. Matthew 4:1-10 calls him the devil, the tempter, and Satan as he tempts Jesus. In neither of these places is there the least indication that Satan is some kind of metaphorical character, or that these passages should be considered as allegory. Jesus Himself said that Satan had asked to have the apostles that he might sift them as wheat (Luke 22:31). How does a metaphorical character do that? Jesus also referred to Hell as a place prepared for the devil and his angels. What sort of place would be prepared for an allegorical character? Inspired writers and speakers mention Satan in over 30 New Testament passages; in not one of them is there any indication he is anything but a real being. “The Devil” is mentioned in 36 verses, and again, not once is there any reason to say he is an allegorical or metaphorical character, just there to illustrate evil in some abstract way. The apostle Peter warned: “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour. Whom resist steadfast in the faith .” (1 Pet. 5:8, 9). We would do well to heed the apostle’s warning. Fortunately, we have the assurance that we can indeed, resist Satan, and that he cannot sift us like wheat. The apostle

28

Satan, and that he cannot sift us like wheat. The apostle 28 John wrote, “…greater is

John wrote, “…greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:4).

who is in you than he who is in the world” (1 John 4:4). Continued from

Continued from page 7—A. Cates devil, and he will flee from you” (James 4:7). Satan accuses us before God (Revelation 12:10), but God’s faithful children, “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (1 John

2:1).

The slave will always stay with his master. When the wicked one is cast into hell, so will be his servants. “Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?” (Rom 6:16). Only the servants of Christ will go to heaven with Him (John 14:1

-6). May we never underestimate our enemy, Satan. He is seeking to destroy our souls, now and for eternity.

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Scaggs, 573-889-8693. Email: jjscaggs@sbcglobal.net or mail: 3491 Pall Mall Dr. # 125, Jacksonville, FL 32257. 29

29

July 2014

The Gospel Journal

CHURCH LISTINGS

The congregations listed are either advertisers in The Gospel Journal or they have purchased congregational subscriptions to The Gospel Journal.

ALABAMA BrantleySasser Church of Christ, 4 miles south on Hwy. 29. Sun. 10, 11 a.m., 5 p.m.; Wed. 7 p.m, Jeff Grimes, preacher, email:

ttbeagles@centurytel.net.

BridgeportRocky Springs Church of Christ, 209 County Road 574, (just off Hwy 72). 256-495-2460, Sun. 9, 10 a.m., 6 p.m. Alabama'soldestcongregation.HenryCamp,preacher.

BryantGlendale Church of Christ, 532 Co. Rd. 308, 35958 (near Chattanooga, TN). Sun. 9, 10 a.m., 5 p.m.; Wed. 6:30 p.m. (CT). Daryel Haynes,preacher,256-597-2207.

Fairhope—890 North Greeno Rd. (Hwy. 98), POB 1525, 36533, 251-928-9053, Fax: 251-928-9033. Sun. 9, 10 a.m., 6:30 p.m.;

Wed.7p.m.MikeRay,preacher.

Jacksonville-Church of Christ, 321 Nesbit St 36265, 256-435-

9356. Sun. 9:30,10:30 a.m., 6 p.m. Wed. 7 p.m. Allen Webster,

preacher,www.housetohouse.com.

TuscaloosaEast Pointe Church of Christ, 1 block from exit 76, off I-20,1-59. Sun. 9,10, 6 p.m.; Wed. 7 p.m. Abiding in God's Word

the Old Paths. LJ of A student, visitor, resident? Welcome! 205-556-

3062.

ARKANSAS Crossett-Church of Christ, 301 Pine St. 71635. 870-364-2721. Sun.

9:30,10:30a.m.,6:00p.m.;Wed.7:00p.m.

MabelvaleChurch of Christ, 10820 Mabelvale West Rd., PO Box 345, 72103, 501-455-2548. Sun. 9:30,10:30a.m., 5p.m. Wed, 7:00 p.m. Dennis Gulledge, Cliff Boyd and Wayne Brewer, preachers, email mabelvalecoc@sbcglobal.net

SwiftonChurch of Christ, 313Ashley, Swifton, Arkansas 72471. 870-485-2472. Sun. 9:30, 10:30 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. Mac Ballard, evangelist.

CALIFORNIA

Galt --330 N. Lincoln Way 95632, Sun. 9, 10 a.m. 6 p.m. (12:30—2nd Sun): Wed 7 p.m. http-//homepage.mac.com/ dan22/Menu17. Html; Dan Morris, preacher 209-745-

3512. email dan22@mac. com (cong. sub. given by Dan

and Sheri Morris)

Norwalk -- Church of Christ, 15333 Pioneer Blvd. 90651, 562-664-2204, Sun. 9:30 10:30, 6 p.m. Thurs. 7p.m.

Visalia -- West Visalia Church of Christ, 4525 W Caldwell Ave, 93277. Sun. 9:45 a.m. 10:45 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed. 7

p.m.

www.westvisaliachurchofchrist.com

Website;

Cliff

Sabroe,

preacher

COLORADO Aurora -- East Alameda Church of Christ 13605 E. Alam- eda 303-344-4050, Sun 9,10 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed 7p.m. Nathan Liddell, preacher.

Denver -- Bear Valley Church of Christ. 2707 S Lamar SI, 80227. 303-986-2707 Sun 9 a.m. 10:15 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed 7 p.m. Preacher Neal Pollard. Home of Bear Valley Bible Institute, www.bearvalleycofc.org

FLORIDA Kissimmee -- Kissimmee Church of Christ, 921 W. Vine St. 34741. Sun 9:00 10:00 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed 7:30 p.m. Nathan Franson. Preacher, 407-847-5749 Milton -- Margaret St. Church of Christ, 6745 Margaret St.

32570.

650-623-6191, Sun 9:30, 10:30 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed 7

p.m.

Preston

Silcox

preacher,

Website

www.margaretstreetchurchofchrist.com

Pensacola -- Innerarity Point Church of Christ, 13250 Gulf Beach Highway, 32507 (Perdido Key area) 850-910- 5942, Sun 9:00, 10:00 a.m. 6:00 p.m. Wed 7:00 p.m. Andy Cates, Preacher

Wewahitchka -- Church of Christ. 2247 Hwy. 71 South (1/4 mi N of CR 386, 2 mi. S. of town), Po Box 929,

32465, 850-639-5401 Sun 9,10 a.m. 5 p.m. Wed 7 p.m.

CST

wewachurch@outdrs.net

email

Eddie

Nichols

preacher,

GEORGIA

Bremen -- Bremen Church of Christ, 650 Alabama Ave S.

30110. 770-537-3013, Sun 9 10 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed 7 pm.

Sidney White, preacher

Cartersville -- Cartersville Church of Christ, 1319 Joe Frank Hams Pkwy NW 30120-4222. 770-382-6775, email bdgayton@juno.com; Sun 10, 11 a.m. 6:30 p.m. Wed 7:30 p.m. Bobby D. Gayton, preacher.

Dalton -- Highland Church of Christ, 901 Chester St. 30721, 706-226-4126 Sun 9:30, 10:30 a.m. 5:00 p.m. Wed 7:00 p.m. Barry Gilreath Jr, preacher Home of GBN, www.gbntv.org.

Fayettevllle -- Fayetteville Church of Christ, 870 Redwine Rd. 30215, 770-461-3617 Sun 9,10 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed 7:00 p.m. Website: www.fcoccom. Dave Rogers, Minister, Greg Nash, Associate/Youth Minister

Kennesaw--North Cobb Church of Christ. 885 Shiloh Rd. 30144, 770-424-6611 Sun 9:00 10:00 a.m. 6:00 p.m. Wed. 7:00 p.m. Lee Davis, preacher

McCaysville -- McCaysville Church of Christ, 134 Bridge St. PO Box 699, 30555, 706-455-2793 Sun 10,11 a.m. 6 p.m., Wed. 7 p.m. Bill Johnston and Keith Ritchie preachers, email kritchie@ellijay com

Villa Rica -- Villa Rica Church of Christ, 515 Dallas Hwy, 30180,770-459-3478 Sun. 10 a.m. 11 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed. 7 p.m. Preacher Patrick Gray

ILLINOIS Zion -- 23rd St. Church of Christ, 2218 Hebron Ave 60099 Sun 10:30, 11:00 a.m. Don Fianagan, preacher, 847-672- 6097, email, dmflanagan@webtv.net. We invite you to attend a growing Biblically sound congregation.

INDIANA Crown Point -- Church of Christ, 660 Burrell St. 96307, 219-671-0561 Sun 9:30 a.m. 10:30 a.m. Thurs 7:00 p.m. Jeff Collet preacher.

Evansville -- Westside Church of Christ, 3232 Edgewood Dr 47712, 812-421-8645 Sun 9 a.m. 10 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed 6:30 p.m.

Muncie -- Towne Acres Church of Christ, 2411 E. Riggin Rd 47303, 765-269-5138 Sun 9:30,10:30 a.m. 6 p.m., Wed 7 p.m. Brian Howard, preacher.

KENTUCKY Hickory -- Spring Creek Church of Christ, 970 State Rt. 1684, 42051, 270-658-3381 Sun 9:30, 10:30 a.m. 6:00 p.m., DST (5:00 p.m. CST), Wed 7:00 p.m. Ty Barnette preacher. www.springcreekcoc.org

Wed 7:00 p.m. Ty Barnette preacher. www.springcreekcoc.org 30 LOUISIANA Chalmette -- Chalmette Church of Christ, 200

30

LOUISIANA Chalmette -- Chalmette Church of Christ, 200 Delaronde St. 70043, 504-279-9438, Sun 9,10 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed 7 p.m. Mark Lance, preacher

New Orleans -- DeGaulle Drive Church of Christ, 4700 DeGaulle Dr. 70131. 504-392-4110 Sun 9:00,10:00 a.m. and 6:00 p.m. Wed 7:00 p.m. www.degaulledrivecoc.com Scott Cain preacher, email office@degaulledrivecoc.com

Springhill -- 902 N Arkansas St., Po Box 201, 71075, 318 -539-5880 Sun 9:45,10:30 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed 7 p.m. www.sprhill.net/nascoc, Please visit us.

West Monroe -- Bawcomville church of Christ, P.O. Box 3057, 2325 Jonesboro Rd 71294, 318-323-2945, Sun 9:45, 10:30 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed 7 p.m. Bill Schooley elder 318-396-7296, email schoofeb@bellsouth.net.

MISSISSIPPI Coldwater -- Coldwater Church of Christ, P.0. Box 321. 2006 Hwy 306 @ Golden Way. 38618 Sun 9:30 10:30 a.m. 5 p.m. Wed. 7 p.m. Clifton Angel, preacher, www Coldwatercofc.com

Courtland -- Church of Christ, Hwy 51 N. 38620, 662-563 -5100 Sun 9:30 10:30 a.m. 5:00 p.m. Wed 7:00 p.m.

Southaven -- Southaven Church of Christ, 1483 Brook- haven Dr @ Hwy 51, 662-393-2690 Sun 9:30 10:30 a.m.

6 p.m. Wed 7:00 p.m. www.southavencoc.org Wade Webster and Robert Jeffries, preachers

MISSOURI

Farmington -- Sunnyview Church of Christ, 2801 Hwy H,

2 miles south of town. 573-756-5925 Sun 10:00 10:45 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed 7 p.m.

NEVADA Las Vegas -- Boulevard Church of Christ, 4000 W Oakey Blvd. 69102, 702-877-9629 Sun 9.10 a.m. Wed 7 p.m. Preacher, Randy L. Mabe, Home of Southwestern School of Religion www.churchofchristlasvegas.com

NEW MEXICO Albuquerque -- Northeast Church of Christ 11000 Paseo del Norte NE, 87122, 505-797-3025 or 292-3856,

www.giftofeternallife.org Sun 9:30, 10:30 a.m. 5 p.m. Wed

7 p.m. John Phillis, preacher

Jal -- Jal Church of Christ, 200 E Utah Ave, PO. Box Drawer N. 88252, 575-395-3010, fax 575-395-2303, Sun 9, 10 a.m. 6 p.m., Wed 9:30 a.m. (Ladies) 6:30 p.m. e- mail jalcofc@valomet.com, Daryl Micham, minister

NEWYORK Syracuse -- Kimber Road Church of Christ, 408 Kimber Road, Syracuse NY 315-446-5732

NORTH CAROLINA Rocky Mount -- 3309 Sheffield Dr. 27801 (take S. Winstead

2 mi from US Highway 64, turn night on Sheffield Dr.) 252-937 -7997 Sun 10. 11 a.m. 6 p.m. Wed 7:30 p.m. Jack Tittle, preacher, email jacktittle@hotmail.com