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The BIBLE VIEW #958 — Christian Fruit

In This Issue:
Producing Any Fruit?
Godly Fruit
Fruits of the Flesh
He Thought He Lost His Arrow
What One Tract Did
What Can You Lend?

Volume: 958     May 20, 2024
Theme: Christian Fruit

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Producing Any Fruit?
Bill Brinkworth

Jesus likens our relationship to God and Him as to grape vines.  The vines are planted byand watered by the Father (John 15:1, I Cor. 3:9).  

The vines represent Jesus and are cared for by Him (John 15:1).  If we are saved and spiritually born into God’s family, we are the branches on the vine.

God’s watchful eye sees what, and if, we produce anything that He considers is good “fruit”.  That “fruit” is what is done to bring honor and glory to God and what helps others come to know and serve Him better.

John 15 tells more about what Jesus said about “fruit”:

  • It is impossible to have any spiritual fruit unless one is saved and in the “body of Christ” (vs. 2, 4).
  • God removes branches that do not produce any “fruit” (vs. 2), although one does not lose their salvation.  Many are professors of Christ but not yielders of what God requires of them. 

    Their power and help are taken away because they refuse to do what they are commanded.  This is why so many who have been saved but do nothing for God have no answered prayer, changes in their lives, and or leadership from God.
  • God prunes (“purgeth”, vs. 2) those that are producing some Christian “fruits.”  As a husbandman trims the branches of his fruit trees to get them to make more branches and more fruit, so does God allow testing and tribulation to produce more godly “fruits” in our lives.
  • If a Christian does what the Scriptures commands, he will have answered prayer (vs.  7).
  • God is honored and gets the glory when we produce “fruit”.  Many look at a person and know what he was before he was saved, see how the Lord has changed his life, and know that it could only have been done by God.

Many claim to be Christians and even try to produce godly fruit.  They do not fool the Father, and their hypocrisy and lack of genuine Christianity do not even fool the ungodly (vs. 6).  They are like wild grapes that have little fruit.  What they produce is very small, sour, and can be distinguished from a good, cultivated crop.

Examine your fruit.  The Husbandman is also a fruit inspector.  What does Jesus think about your “produce”?

Sow little; produce little.  Sow much; produce much for the glory of God.
— Author Unknown

Godly Fruit

With godly guidance and spiritually correct decisions, one’s life can produce good, spiritual consequences, as defined in Galatians:

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.  And they that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections and lusts.  If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit. Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.” Galatians 5:22-26

“If you’re waiting for something to turn up to do for the Lord, try your sleeves.”— Author Unknown

Fruits of the Flesh

What we do is often viewed as our “fruit”.  Here ares some “fruit” which the Bible says is produced from behavior that God’s leadership is not involved in:
“Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.”  Galatians 5:19-21

“The train of failure often runs on the track of laziness.”



He Thought He Lost His Arrow
W. Smith

A young boy once shot an arrow in the air.  Its flight was so high that he soon lost sight of it and failed to find where it had landed.  He spent a long time looking for the arrow in the meadow, but in vain.

Thirty years passed by.  The boy was now a man and he visited the haunts of his boyhood.  Walking around the meadow, he gazed at an oak that frequently sheltered him from the sun rays in his younger days.  He paused under the old tree and found a curious feather protruding from a hollow in the tree.  As he drew out the “feather,” he realized it was the arrow he thought was lost many years ago.

Is not this often true of the efforts of God’s children?  They speak in the ears of sinners; they give a tract; they utter an exhortation, or tell someone about the things of God.  They often do not see where their efforts’ “arrow” landed.  It is impossible for them to track it as it enters the mysterious regions of one’s mind, and they too often deem it lost.

Often, it is not lost.  It has done its work.  Either in future years or in eternity, that effort, like the long-lost arrow, shall come back to its owner, bringing a blessing and even the reward of a duty faithfully performed.

What One Tract Did
W. Smith

While journeying in America, Dr. Coke attempted to ford a river.  His horse lost its foothold, and he was carried down the stream. 

The doctor narrowly escaped drowning by clinging to a branch that overhung the riverside.  A neighboring lady helped him, sent someone to retrieve his horse, and other kindnesses.  Just before he left her house, he gave her a tract about salvation.

For five years the doctor toiled on in the cause of Christ in England and America.  Whether his tract had been destroyed or had pierced a human heart, he did not know.  One day, a young man approached him at a mission conference and requested a couple minutes of the doctor’s time.

“Do you remember, sir, being nearly drowned in the river some five years ago?”

“I remember it quite well,” replied the doctor.

“Do you remember the widow lady at whose house you stayed after escaping from the river?”

“I do and shall never forget the kindness she showed me.”

“And do you remember giving her a tract when you bade her farewell?”

“I do not, but it is possible I did.”

“Yes, sir, you did leave a tract.  That lady read it and was converted.  She lent it to her neighbors, and many of them were saved also.  Several of her children were also saved.  A Bible society was formed, and still flourishes today.”

The statement moved the doctor to tears.  The young many continued, “I have not quite told you all.  I am her son.  That tract led me to Christ.  Now, sir, I am on my way to the mission field to reach others.”

We never know what fruits we can produce when we do the Master’s work.

“Better to wear out than to rust out.” — Cumberland

 

What Can You Lend?
Author Unknown

Peter lent a boat,
To save Jesus from the press;
Martha lent her home
With genuine kindliness.

One man lent a colt,
Another lent a room;
Some threw down their clothes,
And Joseph lent a tomb.

Simon lent his strength,
The cruel cross to bear;
Mary spice brought,
His body to prepare.

What have I to lend?
No boat!  No house!  No lands!
Yet, Lord, I gladly lend
The work of heart and hands.

When a man turns to God desiring to serve Him, God directs  the man’s attention to the world and its need.” — Brunner

The BIBLE VIEW #957- Soul Winning

In This Issue:
Tell Them about Jesus!
Soul Winning
Talking Business  Suppose

Volume: 957     May 13, 2024
Theme: Soul Winning

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 Tell Them about Jesus!

Bill Brinkworth

One of the blessings of reading the Bible is learning how biblical characters solved problems, got through hardships, and lived godly lives.  Peter is one of those personalities that can be a good Christian example to pattern ourselves after.

After Jesus left to return to His heavenly home, Peter, although sad and grieving, pushed forward to live for God.  After his humbling experience of denying Jesus three times (John 18), it seems Peter learned an important lesson from that trial.  From that time forward, the Bible shows that Peter had a single-minded purpose.  That purpose was to take any opportunity to tell others about Jesus.

In Acts 4, after being used to heal a lame man, the religious people were angered at what Peter had done.  Soon, they were questioning and grilling Peter.  Instead of getting down to their level and having a debate that accomplished little, he preached a subject he knew could have a positive influence.  He preached about Jesus and how He was the only way to Heaven.

Acts 3 found Peter among a crowd who wanted to get closer to him after God had used him to heal a lame man.  Instead of taking any credit for the miracle, Peter took the opportunity to tell the crowd about Jesus.

Earlier in Acts 2, after having been used by the Holy Ghost to heal a man, some had accused Peter and the others of having been drunk.  Instead of entering into a big discussion to defend himself, he again told the onlookers about Jesus.

In many circumstances Peter found himself, he told others about Jesus.  We, too, should model his heart to speak to others about the Saviour and how Jesus can change lives.  The great commission (Mark 16:15) God gave to every believer is to go and tell.

Every day, each one of us comes into contact with people.  If we would use those opportunities to point them to the One who has all of life’s answers, this world would certainly be a different place.

Our opinions are not always wanted and rarely change anything.  Many of the world’s solutions also do not always work.  However, when one gets saved, they will have been born into the family of God.  Their heavenly Father can then help them with any problems they face if they go to Him.

Be like Peter, take every opportunity you can to point as many as you can to Jesus.  He is the solution to every problem or trial anyone faces.

Jesus saves.  Tell someone today!


Soul Winning
Bill Brinkworth

When a person is saved, all his sins are forgiven.  Although God will not remind us of our iniquities at our time of judgment, the believer will be rewarded for what he did for Christ after he was saved.  Every Christian is expected to tell others the biblical way to Heaven.  Although it is the commandment most neglected by Christians, it is the one most important!  

Here is some of what the Bible says about our personally winning a soul to Heaven:

  • It is the primary way a lost person will hear about God’s way to Heaven.  “And Philip ran thither to him, and heard him read the prophet Esaias, and said, Understandest thou what thou readest?  And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me? … Then Philip opened his mouth, and began at the same scripture, and preached unto him Jesus.” Acts 8:30 -35  How will the spiritually lost be saved unless a child of God tells them how?  Most of us who are saved were led to the Lord by someone else telling us either by their mouth or written word.
  • It will rescue a soul from spending an eternity in Hell.
    “Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.” James 5:20
  • It should be done in every house, as did the early church.  Door-to-door witnessing is still the way we are expected to witness.  It is how the early church grew, and it is how today’s church will grow.
    “And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.” Acts
    5:42   Also: Acts 2:46-47.
  • It should be done by EVERYONE, not just the disciples, missionaries, pastors, and deacons!
    “And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.” Mark 16:15
    “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:” Matthew 28:19  Also: John 20:21, Luke 24:47
  • It is some of the Christian “fruit” a born-again believer should produce.
    “And he that reapeth receiveth wages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal: that both he that soweth and he that reapeth may rejoice together.” John 4:36  Also: John 15:16, 20:21.
  • The lost need to be “compelled”, as were the visitors in the parable of the Great Supper (Luke 14:16-24).  “Compelling” is done one-on-one!
    “And the lord said unto the servant, Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.” Luke 14:23
  • God commands it!
    Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:  Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.  Amen.” Matthew 28:19-20
  • It is the wise thing to do.
    “The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise.”  Proverbs 11:30 
  • Many commentators teach that believers will receive a crown of rejoicing for witnessing and winning a lost soul to Christ.
    “And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever.” Daniel 12:3
    “For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing?  Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming?” I Thessalonians 2:19

God chose us to win as many to Heaven as we can.  What a shame it would be for a Christian to live a full life on Earth and never, or rarely, have won a soul to Heaven.

“Well, I just can’t do it,” or “I am too shy to talk to anyone” are not excuses that biblically excuse anyone from their God-commanded duty to witness.  I never met a person who thought that it was easy to witness to strangers in the beginning.  However, God always helped them when they showed they were willing to obey His commandments.

I am sure it was hard for the early church members to win souls to Christ, but because they obeyed God, their church grew.  After they witnessed to others, God blessed their church.

There are too many bound for Hell (Mark 7:13).  Do not be a selfish Christian and not share the way to eternity with the Lord with anyone.  Someone probably shared it with you.  If they did not, you would most likely not be Heaven-bound. 

Soul winning is the biblical way to get the message of salvation to others.  It still works today!  Have you witnessed to anyone this week?

It has been estimated that probably 95% of all church members have never
led anyone to Christ!”


Talking Business
Author Unknown

A pastor was passing a big department store and followed a sudden impulse to go in and talk to the proprietor about his salvation.  Finding the owner, the preacher asked, “Mr. T., I’ve talked beds, carpets, and bookcases with you but never talked my business to you.  Would you give me a few minutes to do so?”

Being led to a private office, the pastor took out his New Testament and showed the man passage after passage about his duty to accept Jesus Christ as Saviour.  Finally, the tears began to roll down the man’s cheeks, and he said to the preacher, “I’m 70 years of age.  I was born in this city, and more than a hundred ministers and more than 500 hundred church officers have known me as you have in doing business with me.  You are the only one who ever spoke to me about my soul in all these years.”

What a sad commentary to the many who talked with that businessman.  Yet, many who have crossed our paths have never heard the Gospel from anyone, including us.

“Many Christians complain of the condition of the world today.  If they believed what they confessed, they would lead the lost to Christ, and then the world would be different!”

Suppose
“Suppose”, A tract from the Great Commission Prayer League

Suppose someone were to offer me a thousand dollars for every soul I might earnestly try to lead to Christ.  Would I endeavor to lead more souls to Him than I am endeavoring to do now for the money?  Is my love of money stronger than my love of God or souls…?

“I cared not where or how I lived or what hardships I went through so that I could gain souls to Christ.  While I was asleep, I dreamed of these things, and when I awoke, the first thing I thought of was this great work.  All my desire was for the conversion of the heathen, and all my hope was in God.” — David Brainerd, Missionary to Native Americans (Early 1700s)

The BIBLE VIEW #956 —Creation

In This Issue:
He Made It All
Three Heavens
Back to Step One

Volume: 956     May 6, 2024
Theme: Creation

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He Made It All
Bill Brinkworth

Genesis, the book of beginnings, started with an answer to a question most have.  The popular queries are, “How did life start?  How did all the first plants and animals get here?  Where did we come from?”

Many try to explain the Earth and its origins with their logic.  The explanations go from “a star blew up, and that is how it all started.”  Others offer, “Chemicals got together and over millenniums changed the form accidentally to a more complicated lifeform, then over billions of years developed into the plants, animals, and people we have today.

In 1806, Professor Lyell claimed that 80 geological theories were “hostile” to the Scripture account at the time.  There are far more today.

All the opinions have no proof to explain the theories.  Scrutinizing those explanations soon reveals no credibility for any of those suppositions.  A lot of speculation and assumptions fill the gaps where proof is non-existent.

God knew we would wonder about our origin and ensured that mankind would have accurate answers to our questions.  All that is on the Earth was not here by millions of accidents.  Simple life forms did not evolve into more complex beings.  God created it all!

The Bible documents the beginning of Earth and all that resides on it.  One can read how God created all that we are and see.  He did it all in six days, not billions of years that current “science” claims.  Genesis One explains it all:

Day One: In the beginning, the Earth was dark and without shape.  By God’s words, the dark and shapeless mass was lit up.  Although He created day and night at this point, there was no sun or moon to give that light.  (Genesis 1:2-5)

Day Two: The Earth was surrounded by water.  On that day, God separated the Earth from the waters.  He called the dividing space a firmament (the heaven where birds, clouds… are found).   (Gen.  1:6-8)

Day Three: On that day, God separated the waters under the sky further.  That division revealed dry land whereplant life He created thrived.  (Gen.  1:9-13)

Day Four: In the heavens, God created the sun to give light in the day and the moon to provide light at night.  It was on this day He also made the stars.  (Gen.  1:14:-19)

Day Five: On the fifth day, God created life in the waters, including the whales and all birds.(Gen.  1:20-23)

Day Six: Now, Earth was able to support animal and humanlife by the sixth day.  There was water, breathable air, and food to support the animals and man He created.  (Gen.  1:24-31)

Although there are numerous theories about how Earth and all on it came into existence, all the ideas boil down to two ideas.  J. Vernon McGee defined them as speculation and creation.

”Speculation” encompasses all the theories, none of which have solid proof.  How can people know how it all began?  They were not there.  Besides, the theories change from day to day, person to person, and few agree with each other.

Even inventions that supposedly measure vast amounts of time can not be trusted, as no one knows for sure how accurate they are.  How old would man’s machine declare a rock on the first day it was made?  It takes faith in mankind to believe what is claimed to have occurred, which is not very reassuring and reliable.

Creation also takes faith to believe.  However, that trust is in what God had Moses pen.  Our Creator was there at the beginning and He knows better than man’s speculations. 

A whole world of understanding becomes clear and makes sense with simple faith in what God says happened.  God said it, so believe it!

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.  2 For by it the elders obtained a good report.  3 Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.” Heb 11:1-3



Three Heavens
J. Vernon McGee

God called the firmament Heaven.  This is not heaven as you and I think of it.  Actually, three heavens are mentioned in Scripture.

The Lord Jesus spoke of the birds of heaven, which I think is the heaven mentioned in Genesis 1:8.  Then, there are the stars of heaven, meaning the second heaven.  The third heaven is where God dwells.  So, the first layer up there is the deck where the clouds are and where the birds fly.

Back to Step One
Bill Brinkworth

“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” Genesis.  1:1

STEP ONE: “Let me understand, you believe that all living things on Earth started when two chemicals somehow got together and changed into something more advanced?  That life changed or evolved into something more complex and developed?”

“Yes, basically, that is what happened over millions of years?”

“Hmm.  So, these chemicals got together after many accidents and failures and finally became an advanced combination of some more developed type?  Then how did it duplicate itself?”

“Well, it had to start all over again.”

STEP TWO: “So after, say 100,000 years of ‘accidents’ and returning to STEP ONE, these chemicals finally produced, by chance, a more advanced compound that duplicated itself.  Then the next step would be for this ‘duplicating chemical’ to create another advancement like the ability to sense something that may be a danger to itself, like direct sunlight that could dry it out, or heat that could kill it.”

“Something like that.  It makes sense.”

“So, let’s think this out logically.  After failing to develop a system in this chemical to protect itself, it had to keep returning to STEP TWO for 100’s of thousands of years before this ‘chemical’ finally got it right by accident.  Finally, there was a chemical that could duplicate itself and protect itself from something before something in its environment killed it.  Perhaps this developing chemical had to start all over and return to STEP ONE.

“So now to develop into something more advanced, say a motion like rolling or swimming, it would take a whole bunch of 100’s of thousands of years for this duplicating, self-protecting compound, after returning to STEP THREE, to be able to move.”

“Well, those 100’s of thousands of years may have been millions of years, they say.”

“Oh, I see, so it was probably much longer to get to STEP THREE.  I just used 100’s of thousands to make the number smaller so I could somehow grasp your theory.  By the way, is there any proof of these improvements or transitions?”

“No, I don’t believe there are any.  There are just intelligent people’s suppositions and theories.”

“Hmm.  This basic starting block had to have more developments, like feeding itself, recognition, and senses.  So conservatively, that is three more important functions, chemical changes, and a lot of returning to STEP FOUR, FIVE, SIX, and maybe even back to STEP ONE.  So, using conservative numbering, we’re up to about one million years.  Then this ‘accidental’ chemical would eventually progress into a living organism with 100’s of thousands of cells, bodily, and chemical functions added to it.  That would put us conservatively at 11,000,000 years, again using my 100,000 years as a base.

“Then if this creature, by chance and a whole lot of ‘visits’ to STEPs ONE through 100,000 were to develop into a more advanced creature, it would have more bodily functions such as cell reproduction, nerves, white cells to fight infection, chemical transportation of hundreds of chemicals, more senses, maybe some organs and glands, reproduction of tissues and all chemicals/hormones involved, brain development with its millions of cells and functions, memorization, blood and all its functions, ability to break down and disperse food to the body, and an ability to reproduce this organism that is actually like itself.   This creature would conservatively have 100’s of thousands more functions.  So after 100,000 ‘trips’ back to at least STEP 1000, plus all the original returns to previous STEPS, that would perhaps put it at 11,012,000,000 (11 billion+) years to develop.

“Then this species would supposedly change into other forms.  I don’t think anybody knows how many intermediary steps there would have to be with at least 100,000 improvements.  Say it were only five steps until it developed into a man.  That would put man’s evolving to around 50 billion)years.

“Now the human body has easily 100’s of thousands of other functions including hair growth, thousands of enzymes that control chemical and other functions, cell growth and reproduction, advanced organs, memory, sight, hearing, taste, muscles, billions of cells, millions of nerves, food consumption, fighting off more diseases, glands, layers of skins, healing abilities for most parts of the body, ability to reproduce with a male or female, …..  So that human ‘step’ would easily be another 10 billion years.  That would put us at 60 billion years — roughly.

“Oh, my word.  And if something went wrong, a disease, or accidental death, or inability to handle something in the environments development of man would have to go back to STEP ONE again and start all over for another 60 billion years.”

“Well, there’s no real proof of all these steps you said, but it makes sense.”

“And there is no proof for evolutionists’ assumptions or theories?  Hmm.  But officially, they claim man is between 2.4 and 7 million years old, of which there is no actual proof of any chemical, tissue, bodily developments of the human body and other transitionary phases (except for a few fragments of bone and certainly not even a complete skull or skeleton).  Let’s not forget that mutations of an organism, which is what they are saying have happened to the different parts of the body, have never been known to reproduce themselves. 

Also, trusting that all this happened to develop into man denies many scientific laws, such as the First and Second Law of Thermodynamics.  The Theory of Evolution is man’s idea, and not too many of these ‘scientists’ can agree with each other’s theories of how we got here without God’s intervention.  In addition, there is no proof of all these ideas.

“Man alive.  Sooo, if anyone believes any of this, they have to have a lot of faith in men’s notions.  One that believes this ‘Theory of Evolution’ laughs in the face of real science and must have more faith to believe this fairy tale than anyone I have ever met!”

My “scientific,” evolution-believing acquaintance got very quiet and had a very glazed look.

“Believing God’s explanation of His creation makes more sense, answers thousands of man’s questions, and is more scientific than man’s “science.”

The BIBLE VIEW #955 — Assorted

In This Issue:
Listening for the Trumpet
“Hold the Fort for I am Coming!”
Fault Finding
The Christian’s Ruby Ring

Volume: 955     April 29, 2024
Theme: Assorted

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Listening for the Trumpet
Bill Brinkworth

“… 14 For if we believe Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.  15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.  16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: 17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord….” I Thessalonians 4:13-18

Hundreds of biblical prophecies have been fulfilled.  In I Thessalonians 4, there is one mentioned that will be the next to be fulfilled.  In the last two thousand years, millions have awaited that event (I Thessalonians 4:13-18).  It is the great catching up of the dead in Christ and the living Christians (I Thessalonians 4:16- 17).

The Greek word for “caught up” (I Thessalonians 4:17) is “harpazō,” and it means “to catch away, to seize, pluck, pull, and take by force” (Noah Webster, 1828).  It is very similar to the English word “rapture,” which means “transport, seizing away.” Although “rapture” is not used in the preserved King James text, this futuristic happening is often referred to by that name.

When the Lord shouts, the archangel’s voice is sounded, God’s trumpet will be blown, and the rapture will occur (I Thessalonians 4:16).  The first to ascend will be the dead in Christ.  Those that have trusted Christ as Saviour and died will be called up.  Their souls are already joined with him (II Corinthians. 5:8, Ecclesiastes. 12:7) as a soul never dies, but the body sleeps (I Thessalonians 4:14), awaiting its wake-up call by the rapture’s heavenly summoning.

The second group to meet the Lord in the air will be living Christians.  Before the tribulation’s terrible events occur, somewhere after Revelation 4:1, many Christians will be called up without dying.  No one knows when this catching away will occur (Matthew. 24:36).  It could be today.  It could be tomorrow or twenty years from now, but it will happen; God promised!

If the heavenly trumpet were blown to call the living saved from this world, are you sure you would be called home to Heaven?  It will be a terrible time when many well-intentioned, good-deeders and many religious-but-lost discover the heavenly call did not summon them.  It will be too late for those that have already heard God’s message and have rejected it.  What a frightful time it will be when the prophesied wrath of God is finally poured out on Earth to give those that have never heard the Gospel message a chance to turn to Christ for salvation.

If you are not sure you will go up during the catching away, make sure of your transport “ticket” today.  Admit your sinnership, and trust Christ’s death on the cross as the only payment for your sins.  If you do, then you may be one of many that will hear the heavenly trumpet sound its victory call to Christians one day soon.

“Hold the Fort, for I am Coming!”
D. L. Moody

I am told that when General Sherman went through Atlanta towards the sea, he left a few men in the fort at the Kennesaw Mountains to guard some rations that he brought there.  General Hood got into the outer rear and attacked the fort, driving the men in from the outer works into the inner works.  For a long time, the battle raged fearfully.

Half of the men were either killed or wounded.  The general, who was in command, was wounded seven different times.  When they were about ready to run up the white flag and surrender the fort, Sherman got within fifteen miles.  Through the signal corps on the mountain, he sent the message, “Hold the fort; I am coming.  W. T. Sherman.”   That message fired up their hearts, and they held the fort until reinforcements came, and the fort did not go into the hands of their enemies.

Mr. Bliss wrote a hymn entitled “Hold the Fort for I am coming.”  We must hold our “fort” and not give up serving the Lord.  Our Saviour is in command, and He is coming.

Ho!  My comrades, see the signal
Waving in the sky!
Reinforcements now appearing.
Victory is nigh!

Chorus: “Hold the fort, for I am coming,”
Jesus signals still,
Wave the answer back to heaven,
“By Thy grace we will.”

See the mighty hosts advancing,
Satan leading on;
Mighty men around us falling.
Courage almost gone.

Chorus: “Hold the fort, for I am coming,”
Jesus signals still,
Wave the answer back to heaven,
“By Thy grace we will.”

See the glorious banner waving.
Hear the bugle blow.
In our Leader’s name we’ll triumph
Over every foe.

Chours: “Hold the fort, for I am coming,”
Jesus signals still,
Wave the answer back to heaven,
“By Thy grace we will.”

Fierce and long the battle rages,
But our Help is near;
Onward comes our Great Commander,
Cheer, my comrades, cheer!

Chours: “Hold the fort, for I am coming,”
Jesus signals still,
Wave the answer back to heaven,
“By Thy grace we will.”

“Don’t shoot the rescuers if you are on a sinking ship!”  — Author Unknown


Fault Finding
J. West

Napoleon said that the man who never makes a mistake makes war.  Those who content themselves with standing aloof from revival and temperance work and devote their energies to pointing out the errors and blunders of those in the struggle are making themselves the greatest blunders.  Nothing is easier than fault-finding.  No talent, self-denial, brains, or character are required to set up in that grumbling business.

“In judging and criticizing our brethren, we meddle with that which does not belong to us.  We have enough work to do at home, and if we must judge, let us exercise our faculty upon our own hearts and ways.  —  Henry


The Christian’s Ruby Ring
Spurgeon

A king once gave a ring to his favorite subject.  He said to him, “I know that tomorrow, a charge of heresy will be brought against you.  Answer them if you will when you come in, but you need be in no fear.  If you are in trouble, simply show them the ring, and they will go no further.  The accusation will be dropped.”

It is even so with us.  The Lord has given us the precious blood of Christ to be like a ruby ring upon our finger.  When accusations bother our conscience or guilt is laid on us by Satan, we have only to remember that Christ’s sacrifice covers all our sins.  Our accusations should then be behind us.
He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” John 3:18

Trust Christ, and you shall live.  The bloody sacrifice of Calvary is the only hope of sinners.”  — C. H. Spurgeon

The BIBLE VIEW #954 — The Bible

In This Issue:
Why Read It?
If the Bible Is Removed
The Bible
It’s of God
What They Said about the Bible

Volume: 954     April 22, 2024
Theme: The Bible

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Why Read It?
Bill Brinkworth

Much of man’s history has pivoted around the Bible.  Many have spent their lives preserving it for all to read.  Thousands upon thousands have been persecuted and even killed for reading, believing, and living by its teachings.  

Wars have been waged to stop people from violating commands the Book prohibited, and wars have also been started to halt people from living the way the Bible says to live.  People have even printed devious perversions of the Holy Bible and have eliminated teachings they disagree with.

Why all the history involving the Bible?  Because it is not just a book!  The King James Bible is a perfect copy of the Word of God for English-speaking people (Its root texts are also the basis for Bibles in other major languages)!  It comes from a preserved line of copies and translations that have not altered any of its meanings or words since God had first put His words in the hearts and minds of those who penned what He inspired them to write.

People have been changed by living the principles of God’s Word.  Lives have been altered from the inside out as they practiced and trusted God’s preserved words.  Many have been convicted of its truths and done all they can to forget the haunting reminders of God’s Word.

This precious Book is both loved and hated because it:

  • Commands real government.  Although the Bible has much to say about people ruling people, the real government encouraged in God’s Word is mostly concerned with who will govern whom.  Will man govern himself his way, or will he humble himself and let God direct His life?
  • Commands housekeeping.  The housekeeping the Bible is concerned with most is cleaning up one’s personal life.  Its convicting words put God’s spotlight on the sinful filth one is committing.  Once sin is exposed, it is up to the individual to rid oneself of what God warns will ruin one if iniquity is not dealt with and eliminated.  Not removing sin when God’s Word exposes it will also make the hearer of the Word responsible for not letting God govern their life.
  • Gives godly guidance.  The Bible’s advice guides all who obey it through a successful life.  God has raised billions of “children.”  Our heavenly Father’s advice is always best.  It will tell one with whom to befriend, whom to marry, how to work, how to make the right decision, how to raise children, how to live, how to die, how to prepare for eternity, and how to make decisions one will have to make during their lifetime.
  • Gives godly protection.  God’s advice will protect one from making the same mistakes that have ruined many lives.  It warns of dangers that have entrapped so many.  God’s advice offers a life of safety, if heeded.

The Bible was and always will be the most important Book to man.  It is essential because its principles, when followed, will make a difference to one who is obedient to God’s commands. 

Do you read the Bible regularly?  Are you obeying its pages’ truths you have already been shown? 

The Word of God has been preserved so you and others will know God’s will and way.  Is it an important influence in your personal history?                               

It is impossible to enslave a Bible-reading people.” — Horace Greeley 
This principle is may be why governments are trying hard to ridicule or eliminate God’s Word’s influences in lives!


If the Bible Is Removed
Dr. Payson, Before 1871

Destroy or change the Bible as the enemies of human happiness have vainly endeavored to do, and you render us profoundly ignorant of our Creator.  We will not know of the formation of the world we inhabit, of the origin and progenitors of our race, of our present-day and future destination, and consign us through life to the dominion of desire, doubt, and conjecture.

Destroy this volume, and you deprive us of true religion with its consolations, hopes, and prospects which it gives.  With its removal, nothing will be left of us but a miserable alternative between the cheerless gloom of infidelity and the monstrous shadows of paganism.

Destroy this volume, and you unpeople Heaven.  It will also bar from its entrance descendants of Adam’s race, gives Satan more freedom to cause wreck and havoc, bury hope in the same grave which receives our bodies, and allow us to expect nothing at death but a miserable fate in Hell.  

If more people would read and obey their Bible, liberal preachers would be out of a job, and dead churches would come alive and make a difference in this dark, sinful world.”                                                                          


The Bible
R. Pollock

The Bible!  Hast thou ever heard
Of such a book?  The author, God himself;
The subject, God and man, salvation, life
And death — eternal life — eternal death —
Dread words!  Whose meaning has no end, no bounds!
Most wondrous book!  Bright candle from the Lord!
This book — this Holy Book, on every line
Marked with the seal of high divinity,
On every leaf bedewed with drops of love
Divine; and with the eternal heraldry
And signature of God Almighty stamped
From first to last; this ray of sacred light,
This lamp, from off the everlasting throne,
Mercy took down and in the night of time
Stood, casting on the dark her gracious bow;
And evermore beseeching men, with tears
And earnest sighs to read, believe, and live.

“The Bible is God’s personal letter to you!”  — Author Unknown


It’s of God!
D. Simpson

The Bible must be the invention either of good men or angels, evil men or devils, or of God.

It could not be the invention of good men or angels, for they neither would nor could make such a perfect prophetic, scientific, and historical book.  They would also be lying if they did, as all through the Bible it is written, “Thus saith the Lord.”

It could not be the invention of bad men or devils, for they could not and would not make a book that commands all duty, forbids all sin, and condemns their souls to an eternal Hell.

We, therefore, draw this conclusion: the Bible must be given by Divine inspiration!

What They Said about the Bible

“That book accounts for the supremacy of England.” — Queen Victoria

“It is impossible to rightly govern the world without God and the Bible.” — George Washington

“I believe the Bible is the best gift God has ever given to men.  All the good from the Saviour of the world is communicated to us through this Book.” — Abraham Lincoln

“That Book, sir, is the rock on which our republic rests.” — Andrew Jackson
That may be why government leaders are trying so hard to muzzle the Bible’s “voice” and influence.

“The Bible is the sheet-anchor (rope on a powerful sail) of our liberties.” — U. S. Grant

“In all my perplexities and distresses, the Bible has never failed to give me light and strength.” — Robert E. Lee

“I have made it a practice to read the Bible through every year.  The earlier my children begin to read it, the more confident will be my hope that they will prove to be useful citizens to their country and be respectable members of society.” — John Quincy Adams

“The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand for ever.”  Isaiah 40:8

The BIBLE VIEW #953 — Heaven

In This Issue:
 A Heavenly Mansion
Verses Describing Heaven
Shipwrecked Here on Earth
Christian, What Is Next for You?

Volume: 953     April 15, 2024
Theme: Heaven

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A Heavenly Mansion
Bill Brinkworth

Much is talked about Heaven, but the Bible does not describe it so we can get a clear picture of it.  However, when contemplating our future home, I was reminded of the mansions awaiting some in Glory Land.
“In my Father’s house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you.  I go to prepare a place for you.” John 14:2

When thinking about the Christian’s heavenly home, I was somewhat confused that “mansions” was only mentioned once in the New Testament.  I know that one should never base a biblical teaching on one verse, so I was perplexed.

After searching and reading what others assumed about Heaven’s treasures, I examined “mansions” another way.   Although I only know the Greek of the New Testament (The King James New Testament was originally written in Greek) found in Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance,  I wanted to see if the Greek word for mansions in John 14 appeared elsewhere in the New Testament.  It was.

The Greek word for mansions, “meno,” did appear elsewhere, but it was used to describe something other than a mansion as we know it.  Some of the uses were found translated to:

“tarry ye” in Mat.  26:30, Mark 14:34…
“remain” in Luke 10:7, John 1:33…
“abide” in Mark 6:10, Luke 19:5…
“dwelleth thou” in John 1:38, John 5:36
“they continued” in John 2:12
“abide” in Mark 6:10, Luke 19:5…
“abode” in Luke 1:56, Luke 8:27…
“it would have remained,” in Mat.  11:23
“abideth” in John 3:36,  in John 8:35
“abiding” in John 5:38
“continue” inJohn 8:31 & John 15:9
“dwelt” in Acts 28:30
“that he would tarry”  in John 4:40
“endureth” in John 6:27
“should abode”  in John 12:46
“which remained” in II cor.  3:11

All those various usages of the Greek word defining “mansions” confused me further.  However, after examining all the different uses, I saw a pattern that made“mansions” more descriptive and clear.  They were all used to describe a situation where people would live permanently.  Here on Earth, our abodes are only “pup tents”; they are only temporary places to live as we await our permanent home with the Lord!

Noah Webster’s 1828 Dictionary, written to better understand biblical words, clarifies that a “mansion” is a place of “residence, a house, habitation, the house of the lord of a manor, residence, and abode.”  Webster’s definition and the Greek usages revealed that the awaiting mansions are where we will live permanently with the Lord.

Verses Describing Heaven
Bill Brinkworth

  • “But now they desire a better country, that is, an heavenly: wherefore God is not ashamed to be called their God: for he hath prepared for them a city.” Heb. 11:16
  • “For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come.” Heb. 13:14
  • “For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.” II Cor. 5:1
  • “After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands.” Rev. 7:9 God’s throne is there along with innumerable people.
  • “For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes.” Rev. 7:17  Jesus is there.  Sadness will be missing in Heaven.
  • “But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” I Cor. 2:9  Heaven is indescribable.  Perhaps that is why only a few details about it have been recorded.
  • “And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them.” Revelation 14:13
  • “Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.” Mat.  5:12  One’s rewards await them in their heavenly place.
  • “For this ye know, that no whoremonger, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, hath any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.” Eph.  5:5  Those who do not have their sins paid for by the blood of Jesus will not be found in Heaven.

Our abode on Earth is only temporary.  However, no one will see Heaven unless they are ”born again” into the family of God!  Are you absolutely sure it will be your eternal home?
“Yea, I think it meet, as long as I am in this tabernacle, to stir you up by putting you in remembrance;  14 Knowing that shortly I must put off this my tabernacle, even as our Lord Jesus Christ hath shewed me.” II Peter 1:13-14 
“Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” John 3:3

“Where will you spend eternity?  Smoking or non-smoking?”
 — Author Unknown

Shipwrecked Here on Earth
Salter

Consider the situation of a man who, having been shipwrecked upon a dreary, inhospitable island, awaits when a ship will rescue him.  He paces the barren sands and looks up to the overcast sky, anxiously awaiting a rescuing arrival to carry him to a better land.

So the Christian, like the exile on a rock, feels far from his natural home and is looking for the day of our Lord Jesus Christ’s return.  He knows that His vessel is prepared, and the convoy ready to bear him hence from the baren wilderness to a happy land flowing with milk and honey.

Christian, What Is Next for You?
Bill Brinkworth

No one will escape the one part of life that is scary to many: death (unless the rapture takes the Christians home to Heaven first!).  Because of the uncertainty, most wonder what will happen when their body dies.

For born-again people, there is hope for a wonderful life after death (II Corinthians 5:1-2, 8).  The Bible does not mention, as some cults teach, that it will be the end when one dies. Physical death will not be the end because everyone has a soul that will live forever.  It will live in either Heaven or Hell.
“For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, an house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens.” II Corinthians 5:1 Also: II Corinthians 5:8.

Because of God’s promise of Heaven, many “groan earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven:” (II Corinthians 5:2).  While battling infirmities, hardships, and heartaches on this Earth, many Christians are looking forward to Heaven — a place of eternal joy and no suffering.

Paul was busy for the Lord while on this Earth but expectantly awaited his eternity in Glory.  One reason Paul looked forward to Heaven was one that today’s believers should also share.  That reason is now we live by faith (II Corinthians 5:7), but in Glory, the believer will live by sight.  Now, we must trust God’s Word and not always physically see that its promises are true.  One day, however, we will see all the glorious things God has promised will come to pass.

With all the positive things to look forward to, Christians should not be afraid of their eternal future.  When our body gives its last breath in this world, we may be “absent from the body,” but we will be instantly “present with the Lord” (II Corinthians 5:8).  We have God’s Word on that!
“We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.” II Corinthians 5:8

“For the child of God, death is the way of entrance to Heaven.”  
— Author Unknown

The BIBLE VIEW #952 —Filling in the Gaps

In This Issue:
Devoted Workers Needed!
So Gread A Heritage

Volume: 952     April 8, 2024
Theme: Stand and Serve

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Devoted Workers Needed!
Bill Brinkworth

It has been a challenging, exciting 43+ years of being saved and serving the Lord.  During that time, there were many battles and sacrifices to preserve righteousness, souls saved from Hell, and society had some protection from many sinful influences.

Men and women quit high-paying jobs to teach the youth in Christian schools.  Often, many worked at the schools for minimum pay or nothing.  Christian education and to keep many from worldly false teachings were important in the minds of those believers.

Many who pioneered the Christian school movement went to jail rather than close their ministry.  Hosts of young people were saved in those outreaches, and worldly, godless philosophies were kept from our precious future, our youth.  Despite the world’s attempts to stop the schools, many grew and saturated their communities with God’s truths.  Lives were changed, and some areas dealt with less violence and sin that scarred many neighborhoods.

Preachers stood boldly behind pulpits and exposed false religious doctrines and preached God’s Word truths.  They stood bravely against sin, which so many were involved in, and were a tremendous influence to many. 

Many rebelled against those church leaders and did all they could to stop biblical teachings and those exposing unrighteousness.  However, those who endured criticism and challenges often saw miraculous changes in many lives.

Ministries grew to reach as many as possible.  Some outreached into dangerous neighborhoods and put themselves and their families in unpleasant situations so that the needy sinners could hear the saving words from God.  Multitudes turned their lives over to Him, resulting in them being changed and improved citizens.

Some surrendered all to go to foreign and domestic mission fields.  Most faced tremendous opposition.  Many faced dangers, diseases, and even death,  Still, those unsung heroes went and stayed and made great improvements in so many lives.!

Others got involved in their local government to stop the spread of ungodly practices.  They, too, faced great opposition and chastisement.  Still, they kept on despite the trials they endured.

Many of those who sacrificed what this world had to offer for what God would have them do are now fading off the scene.  Disease and age are silencing their great voices that once changed lives, helped those who had little hope, rebuilt families and relationships, and taught godly principles.

However, as their voices are no longer heard and many are going to their heavenly reward, I wonder who will pick up the burdens of those who no longer can?  Where are those who will carry the torch that will illuminate the future world with godly, biblical messages and proper lifestyles?  Who will fill the voids left by those that no longer can serve?

Some still obey their convictions and endure opposition so that others can hear God’s message.  However, their numbers are dwindling.  Even fewer are those who know what God’s Word commands and fewer are those who do not obey what they are shown to be His way.

Many church leaders who should stand for God’s Word, ways, and truths are not.  The populace’s cry to halt convicting messages, to stop preaching against sin, not to go door-to-door soul-winning, and to do what everyone else is doing sways them from standing against unrighteousness. 

Their message may be comfortable to sinners’ ears, but God’s truths are no longer pounded from many pulpits.  Biblical truths and practices are often ridiculed and taught to be false and unnecessary today.  Thus, few convictions against unrighteousness are experienced among churchgoers.  Outreaches are limited.  Workers are fewer, and communites succumb to the wiles and ways of ungodly, unbridled behavior.

Rarer are those ministries that see the damage done by worldly public school education and support or create Christian schools.  Many, including church leaders, send their children to public schools falsely believing that “I will teach them what is right at home, and they will know better than falling for the worldly teachings in the government schools.”

Children are saturated with propaganda about threatening global destruction, how they have rights to do whatever they want, and that “right” is whatever they think it should be.  Few hear how there is a God that can change any situation, loves them, and has great plans for them if they will only trust, obey, and follow His way.

Few surrender to serve and live for the Lord.  Worldly excuses justify their not filling in the gaps from aged, ailing servants of God.

“Why,  I need more money than the ministry offers.  It must not be God’s will for me to work in the ministry full time.”  The faith to trust God’s provision is missing in their life.  God met the needs of ministry predecessors.  He can do it today if people will only trust Him.

“I can’t teach that Sunday school class.  The kids are so rowdy.”  Those people, too, are not relying on the power God gives to those who do His will.

“Go soul-winning.  No way.  I don’t know what to say, and it could be dangerous going into some neighborhoods and homes.”  All have had to battle the same fear of speaking to strangers about salvation and God’s will and way.  However, they went, and God’s grace and protection were sufficient as they will be for those who will go now!

“Ride a Sunday school bus to bring children to church?  Not me.  I work all week and need to have some time to myself.” The bus workers of the past also had to sacrifice their time, but because of their volunteering, millions came to churches and were saved.

This world desperately needs another generation of convicted, concerned, and courageous believers.  Who will step to the front and stand for God’s righteousness?  Whoever you are, please start now.  The world must hear God’s Word’s saving and life-altering news today.  Who will go and tell?
“And he said, How can I, except some man should guide me?  And he desired Philip that he would come up and sit with him.” Acts 8:31

“What about all the lost souls around you?  They have an eternity.  Please show them how to go to Heaven!  You may be their only hope in knowing God’s way!”  — Bill Brinkworth

So Great A Heritage
Bill Brinkworth

Christians today, both in America and worldwide, have so much for which to be grateful.  Our faith, Bible, doctrines, and freedoms were obtained at high prices paid by our Christian predecessors.  It cost many their lives and much suffering, yet we take for granted what believers of the past had to pay dearly for and place little value on our godly heritage.

Believers should not be surprised if they face persecution, as their namesake, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, also received much.  His righteousness and exposing of false teachings were so grievous to the followers of man-made worship that they ensured our Saviour was beaten, ridiculed, mocked, and eventually nailed to a cross.  If God allowed His Son not to escape the world’s wrath and hatred for the things of God, Christians should also expect it.
“If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you.  Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord.  If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you….” John 15:19-20

We get upset if someone jokes about our faith or scoffs at us.  Most of us today have little understanding of what Christians before us suffered for their beliefs.  Here are some reminders of the sacrifices and suffering early Christians faced for their faith and godly lifestyles:

Millions of men, women, and children died for their faith in the past.  The walls of Rome’s catacombs and other hidden places reveal how many lived and died in fear of being caught and tortured for their beliefs.  Many had to worship in secret places for fear of being killed or imprisoned for attending a church service.  

Landmark Baptist College’s (Haines City, FL) collection of ancient Bibles has a Bible with fire-scorched pages.  It was plucked out of the flames that burned its owner.  A saint of the past refused to denounce his faith in Christ and His Word, and the man was burnt to death.  Today, his Bible is preserved as a reminder of what Christ and His Word meant to some and how many died for reading or living God’s way.

With the freedom that most have today, many professing Christians do not live for Christ, let alone die for Him.  It is easy to attend a nearby church, yet countless excuses are given by those not attending. 

Most households contain at least one copy of the Word of God.  However, few have bothered to read it.  Baptistries are now heated and always available, yet few follow the Lord in believer’s baptism.  Although we are quickly losing our religious freedoms in the United States, it is still possible for a believer to obey the Lord’s command and tell others how to go to Heaven, yet few do.

What does your faith in Christ mean to you?  Does God’s Word mean so much that you read it faithfully and would not sway from its teaching?  Is the price Christ paid on the cross for our salvation so precious to you that you are determined to live for Him, no matter the cost, socially or monetarily?  Are the Bible’s truths so important to you that you share them with others no matter the cost in time, money, or others’ opinions?

We are nearing an era’s end when many lived their faith in Christ and shared it with others without paying a high price.  However, because many have not stood up for their beliefs and freedoms, the ungodly are taking away those liberties.

For most of us, compared to what our predecessors have paid for their religious convictions, the cost to us has been minimal.  That fact may change shortly. 

Will you be willing to pay the price for your faith, no matter what it is?  Many say they will die for their faith, but for most of us, God only requires that we live for Him. Are you living boldly for Him today?

“If Christians do not tell the lost how to be saved from a tormenting eternity, who will?”  It is the responsibility of believers to tell others how to be saved!
                                                                                                                          
— Bill Brinkworth

The BIBLE VIEW #951 — Witnessing

In This Issue:
Winning Souls to Christ
We Are His Ambassadors
We just Deliver It!

Volume: 951     April 1, 2024
Theme: Witnessing

All need to read the Bible every day.  Do you have difficulty doing so?  Sign up to
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Winning Souls to Christ
Bill Brinkworth

In John 4, we see Jesus got much encouragement and strength (John 4:32, 34) from doing what God desires all of us to do.  He had the opportunity to speak to a Samaritan woman about spiritual things. He introduced her to the Messiah.  We all would be likewise blessed if we did as our Saviour did.

A wise man (Proverbs 11:20) wins a soul for Heaven and robs Hell of victims.  A born-again child of God is expected to tell others as Jesus did. We are not to be silent about the crucial business of eternity.  We are commanded to broadcast God’s way to others and will be blessed for doing so.

In John 4:34-38, Jesus taught about telling others about God’s way to Heaven:

  • Now is the time to do it. Do not wait four months (John 4:35) or when you think the time is right. Too many say that telling others does not work now. Not true! People are getting saved all the time. There may be a person you work with or someone who lives across the street who desires that someone would tell them the Way.  The harvest of souls for Heaven is ripe (John 4:35); go and tell someone.  God will give the increase one day if you will go and tell!
  • When you win a soul, there will be eternal rewards (John 4:36). You will be encouraged, and even “crowns” are awarded in eternity for those who win souls.  The person who gets saved through your telling them will also be rewarded with an eternity in Heaven.
    “For what is our hope, or joy, or crown of rejoicing?  Are not even ye in the presence of our Lord Jesus Christ at his coming?” I Thessalonians 2:19
    “Holding forth the word of life; that I may rejoice in the day of Christ, that I have not run in vain, neither laboured in vain.” Philippians 2:16
  • A person who tells someone does not always win someone immediately. It is a team effort. Someone sows the seed of the hope and knowledge of Jesus and the way to Heaven. Often, another person will later lead the person to the Lord.


    Maybe a mother or Sunday school teacher told the person about God’s plan for them in eternity. Nothing happened at the time. The person did not make a decision or did not believe enough to trust Christ as Saviour when they first heard the message. Later, a soul-winner came along (John 4:37) and led that person to a saving knowledge of the biblical way to Heaven.

If you are saved, you have a tremendous responsibility. That charge is to tell others about God’s way to Heaven. Have you told anyone today?

“Except for a temptation here and there, the devil has to do little to get the souls of men into Hell.  ALL will go there unless they do what God has made the only way to escape a tormenting eternity!  That way is by being born again.  Christians must do all they can to win others to Christ so they can be saved from an agonizing eternity— Bill Brinkworth

“The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise.”
Proverbs 11:30

We Just Deliver It!
Bill Brinkworth

I do not know if there are many boys or girls who deliver newspapers anymore.  However, when I was younger, many my age would get bundles of the daily paper delivered to them, fold them, put them in their newspaper bag, and give them to their customers.

Every day, often first thing in the morning or after school, a bundle of local newspapers would be retrieved by a delivery person.  They would do their best, no matter the weather or time, to get the paper for people to read.

If the customer had not opened and read the paper, his ignorance of what was happening in the world around him was not the delivery person’s fault.  The paper was made available to him by the diligence of the newspaper deliverer.

Likewise, it is usually not a preacher’s or person delivering God’s message’s fault people do not heed the biblical warnings given to them.  The spreader of the Good News obeyed what he was commanded to do from the Word of God.  He did his part. 

They were the delivery “boys.”  Their efforts ensured God’s Word was put in the hands and ears of those needing to know His message. All the delivery person can do is get God’s Truths to others.  No one can make anyone saved or be obedient to His commandments.

What are you doing with God’s message faithfully delivered to you?  Did you listen intently?  Were you convicted about something that was said?  Did you go to the Lord, beg for His mercy and forgiveness, and intend to do as the Holy Spirit’s heartfelt “whisper” urged you to do?  Or did the message go in one ear, and no obedience to the Holy Spirit’s calling ever followed?   If so, you have been delivered God’s Good News.  What will you do with His message?

“If people shared the Gospel like they do gossip, we’d have a major revival worldwide.”
                                                                                                                           
— Author Unknown

We Are His Ambassadors
Bill Brinkworth

The apostle Paul was locked in a deep, dank dungeon for his testimony and preaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  He was separated from his friends, did not get the proper food and care, was isolated, and forgotten. Yet, he knew God was aware of his predicament and allowed him to be there for a reason.

Ephesians 6:20 explains why: “For which I am an ambassador in bonds: that therein I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.” An ambassador is an important, special representative appointed to represent another power.  Paul’s mission in prison was to be a representative of God.  

As odd as many think Paul’s mission was, all Christians are called to be emissaries of Heaven.  God may have them in a particular neighborhood, situation, hospital bed, job, or school for a specific opportunity.  He wants them to deliver his message to people in that position.  Often, no one else can reach them outside the position one finds oneself in.

We can be ambassadors for Heaven with our lives.  Many are watching us in many situations, such as how we speak, act, react when angry or sad, or even dress.  If we do not tell others about the goodness, mercy, and grace of God, and be a testimony for Him, who will?

The Bible tells us how we can tell others.  We can be an emissary by:
Singing: Instead of the world hearing us sing their songs emphasizing adultery, drugs, sexuality, disobedience, and other ungodly actions, they should listen to us singing songs praising His goodness and mercy.
“Sing praises to the LORD, which dwelleth in Zion: declare among the people his doings. Psalm 9:11

 Talking:
“Sing unto him, sing psalms unto him, talk ye of all his wondrous works.” I Chronicles 16:9
“Now the man out of whom the devils were departed besought him that he might be with him: but Jesus sent him away, saying, Return to thine own house, and shew how great things God hath done unto thee.  And he went his way, and published throughout the whole city how great things Jesus had done unto him.” Luke 8:38-39
“Also I say unto you, Whosoever shall confess me before men, him shall the Son of man also confess before the angels of God: But he that denieth me before men shall be denied before the angels of God.” Luke 12:8-9
“The woman then left her waterpot, and went her way into the city, and saith to the men, Come, see a man, which told me all things that ever I did: is not this the Christ?” John 4:28
“The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise.” Proverb 11:30
Use your voice to win others to the cause of Christ.

Being a good example:
“I have hated the congregation of evil doers; and will not sit with the wicked.  I will wash my hands in innocency: so will I compass thine altar, O LORD: That I may publish with the voice of thanksgiving, and tell of all thy wondrous works.” Psalms 26:5-7
“And he said unto them, Is a candle brought to be put under a bushel, or under a bed?  and not to be set on a candlestick?” Mark 4:21  
The light of a good testimony for the cause of Christ can be brightness in this dark, sinful world.  Do not “hide” your Christianity.

Quoting scripture and biblical principles:
“Make me to understand the way of thy precepts: so shall I talk of thy wondrous works.” Psalm 119:27
“My lips shall utter praise, when thou hast taught me thy statutes.  My tongue shall speak of thy word: for all thy commandments are righteousness.” Psalms 119:171-172   
How will the unsaved world hear of the Word of God unless the people of God tell them?

Praising Him:
“Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men!” Psalm 107:8

“If Christians do not tell the lost how to be saved from a tormenting eternity, who will?”  It is the responsibility of believers to tell others how to be saved!
                                                                                                                          
— Bill Brinkworth

The BIBLE VIEW #950 — Giving

In This Issue:
Give
A “Giving” Testimony
Giving
Put the Money in His Hand
Un-voluntary
Keeping Money


Volume: 950     March 25, 2024
Theme: Giving

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Give 
Bill Brinkworth

“Notwithstanding, lest we should offend them, go thou to the sea, and cast an hook, and take up the fish that first cometh up; and when thou hast opened his mouth, thou shalt find a piece of money: that take, and give unto them for me and thee.” Matthew 17:27

One of the biggest blessings of being a Christian is seeing how God takes care of His own.  Seeing Him meet needs establishes concretely how real He is.

Many spend much energy trying to justify why they should not and do not give sacrificially to the Lord.  They miss seeing how God will provide for their needs. 

I have noticed quite often that those who have justified robbing God by not giving their tithes (Malachi 3:8) also have the most financial problems.  Some tried to talk me out of giving by faith to my local church.  They justified not giving because they supposedly “knew” the Scriptures better than I did.  They accused me of being foolish when I gave money to the ministry when I could not afford to.  Those people never got to the point where they ignored human reasoning and lived by faith.

I am so glad I did not let them influence me.  When I got saved, I soon learned about tithing (giving at least 10% of what God had allowed one to earn) from my daily devotions and good preaching on the subject.

I gave sacrificially when giving was extremely difficult because of my low economic level.  Not once did I ever miss a bill.  I never was even late when I tithed.  I always got to see how God met my needs because there was no other way as far as the “world” saw, but through His help.  When the needs were most urgent, He always provided in an unexpected manner.

In verse 25, a “tribute” was due to be paid by Jesus.  Sometimes, a “tribute” was a temple tax or a gift to the Lord.  Here, I believe it was a government tax, as it was mentioned that “kings of the earth” were collecting it.  It was a need to pay Jesus’ tax. 

The disciples and Jesus had no guaranteed salary or a well-stocked bank account.  They lived day-by-day through God’s provision of their “daily bread”. 

When it came time to pay their taxes, an important need, Jesus told Peter to work for it.  Peter obeyed, went down to the water’s edge, threw in a hook, and caught a fish.  Peter reached into the fish’s mouth and, imagine that, pulled out of it a coin that was enough to pay their tribute.

Coincidence?  Unlikely!  It was God’s way of providing what they needed.  If they had had a large savings account and had just taken out the money they needed, they would have missed seeing how God had taken care of them — an important lesson to learn if one is to grow spiritually. 

With the economy being in a terrible mess, more and more people are finding it hard to pay bills.  This is not the time to stop giving to God, but rather a time to give more faithfully and then see how the mighty hand of God will provide!

“Although a new Christian and a single parent, I soon started tithing.  One Sunday, my pastor encouraged all to participate in “Give It All Sunday.”

“I struggled with that request.  ‘How in the world could I afford to give all I earned that week?  I do not make much, am on a strict budget, and barely can make ends meet now.  I have expenses most do not have.’

“Soon, however, I succumbed to the Holy Spirit’s desire to step out by faith and put all I earned in the offering plate that Sunday.  By the grace of God, I somehow made all my financial obligations, although I had no savings to help me, and never missed a bill.  When we live by faith, God WILL be there to do the impossible!  Trust Him.” — Bill Brinkworth

A “Giving” Testimony
Norman Gartin

When I was a new Christian, I sat in the DMV with another man from my church.  My friend said he couldn’t tithe because he couldn’t afford to with all the car repairs and his being on state assistance.  My response to him was that I couldn’t afford not to tithe, seeing I was also out of work and trusting the Lord to provide.

He and his wife later went on to divorce.  Their lives were in a constant spiral down and away from God.  My wife and I have been married for over 35 years, and our children serve the Lord.  I wonder if there is a relationship between our attitude on tithing and where we ended up years later.  We both sat in the same church and heard the same teaching but with different ears.

“Some people don’t give their money because they worship the dollar, and they don’t want to give away their ‘god’.”  — Bill Brinkworth

Giving
Author Unknown

The sun gives ever; so the Earth,
What it can give so much ‘tis worth;
The ocean gives in many ways;
Gives paths, gives fishes, rivers, bays;
So, too, the air, it gives us breath;
When it stops giving comes in death.
Give, give, be always giving;
Who gives not is not living.
The more you give,
The more you live.

God’s love hath to us wealth upheaped;
Only by giving it is reaped.
The body withers, and the mind,
If pent in by selfish rind,
Give strength, give thought, give deeds, give pelf,
Give love, give tears, and give thyself;
Who gives not is not living.
The more we give,
The more we live.

(* “pelf” is money or riches.)

“You give but a little when you give of your possessions.  It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.”  — K. Gibran

Put the Money in His Hand
Author Unknown

A pastor was taking a missionary offering.  He said, “I want each of you to give today as though you were putting your money right into the pierced hand of Jesus Christ.”

A lady came up afterward and said to him, “I was going to give a dollar, but I didn’t do so.”

“Why didn’t you give it?” the preacher asked her.

“Do you think,” replied the lady, “I would put a dollar into His pierced hand?  I have a hundred dollars at home, and I will give that.”

If you were putting money into the pierced hand of our Lord, our contributions would amount to millions instead of thousands, and the world would be evangelized in our generation!

“Giving is the secret of a healthy life.  Not necessarily money, but whatever a man has of encouragement, sympathy, and understanding.” — J. D. Rockefeller, Jr.

Un-voluntary Giving
Author Unknown

A summer boarder asked the farmer, “How much milk does that cow give?”

“Wal,” the farmer replied, “ef ye mean by voluntary contribooshun, she don’t give none.  But ef ye kin get her cornered, so’s she can’t kick none to hurt, an able-bodied man kin take away about ‘eleven quarts a day from her.”

When it comes to giving, are not many like Farmer Applegate’s cow?

“God has given us two hands — one to receive with and the other to give with.  We are not cisterns made for hoarding; we are channels made for sharing.” — Graham  


Keeping Money  
Author Unknown

It is foolish to allow our hearts to lean upon any earthly good, which may soon perish.  It is like putting all one’s money into the coat pocket, which a clever thief may empty.

A great man once told a youth to empty his purse into his head if he wished to keep his money safely; meaning that a good education would be the best and surest investment for his little capital. 

Let us lay up our treasure where it will be safe, namely, in the graces of the soul, the love of God, and for our eternity in Heaven if we are saved.
“Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” Matthew 6:19-21

“You do not have to be rich to be generous.  If one has the spirit of true generosity, a pauper can give like a prince.” Wells

The BIBLE VIEW #949 — Death

In This Issue:
To Be with Christ is Far Better
Roll Call
Only the Shack Was Destroyed
Death   God Will Be with Us
The Word of God on Death
Nothing to Fear

Volume: 949     March 18, 2024
Theme: Death

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To Be with Christ Is Far Better
Bill Brinkworth

Most people, Christians included, have much fear and anxiety about their death.  Paul had a much different outlook on his.

His attitude was that his life here on Earth was more important to others than to him (Phil. 1:24).  He considered death a gain to him rather than a great loss.

“For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” Philippians 1:21

That is a much different view than those living for the party scene would have.  They look forward to constant excitement and festivity.  If they could not be partying, they would not be happy.  The thought of death and the next life would not be something they would look forward to, as it would be different from what they currently enjoy.

Self-centered people enjoy when they are the center of attention, and their needs are catered to.  They also would fear an eternal future where they were not in the position to get what they wanted and run the show.

One seeking political power and money is satisfied when he is running things, and his voice is the one changing the way people live.  He would also not be content in Heaven, where God is the only ruling power, and His will is the only one that matters.

A Christian, however, should have a completely different view of his eternal future, as did Paul.  This life is not our permanent home; we are just “pilgrims passing through”.  While here on Earth, we have a purpose to be a good testimony for the cause of Christ and to serve the Lord in any way we can.

If we have done what the Bible says one must do to have God’s promise of going to Heaven by being saved, we no longer have to fear eternity.  We can have great peace that the world does not have concerning this matter (Psalms 119:165).  We may even find ourselves like Paul, longing for Heaven but happy serving the Lord while we are here.
“For I am in a strait betwixt two, having a desire to depart, and to be with Christ; which is far better:” Philippians 1:23

“God will survive your rejection, but you won’t survive His!”


Roll Call
D. L. Moody

A soldier wounded lay dying in his cot.  Suddenly, the deathlike stillness of the room was broken by the cry, “Here!  Here,” which burst from the lips of the dying man.

Friends rushed to the spot and asked what he wanted.  “Hark,” he said, “they are calling the roll in Heaven, and I am answering to my name.” In a few moments, once more he whispered, “Here!” and passed into the presence of the King.

“Aspire to inspire before you expire!”

Only the Shack Was Destroyed
C. H. Spurgeon

Certain Swiss peasants were feeding their flocks on one of the lofty upland valleys.  On one side of the pasture stood several wooden huts where they lived during the summer.  They were poor shacks, which they left as soon as the winter set in.

One day, they heard a strange rumbling up in the lofty Alps, and they understood what it meant: a mass of rock, snow, or ice had fallen and would soon come crashing down in the form of an avalanche.  In a short time, their fears were realized when they saw the tremendous mass come rushing from above, bearing destruction in its course.  What did it destroy?  Only the old wooden shacks.  Every one of the shepherds and their family was safe.

Their case is a picture of ours.  The “avalanche” of death will come one day.  When it does, only the saint’s temporary earthen house will be destroyed.  The real “them” will be safe and live an everlasting life.  Will you fret over so small a loss?

“For the child of God, death is the entranceway to heaven.”

Death
Author Unknown

What is death?  Oh!  What is death?
‘Tis the snapping of the chain;
‘Tis the breaking of the bowl;
‘Tis relief from every pain;
‘Tis freedom to the soul.
‘Tis the setting of the sun
To rise again tomorrow,
A brighter course to run
Nor sink again in sorrow.
Such is death!  Yes, such is death!

What is death?  Oh, what is death?
‘Tis slumber to the weary;
‘Tis rest to the forlorn;
‘Tis shelter to the dreary;
‘Tis peace amid the storm;
‘Tis the entrance to our home;
‘Tis the passage to that God
Who bids His children come
When their weary course is trod.
Such is death!  Yes, such is death!

God Will Be With Us
Whitson

No earthly friend can indeed accompany one in death.  There is no human arm on which we can steady ourselves as we walk through its dark valley.  Although we may then be alone in one sense, we will not be alone in another, as the Saviour has promised to accompany us.  He said, “When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee.”  Isa 43:2

Surely then we can also sing as did David, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” Psalm 23:4

When a child walks down a dark road at night, does he fear when he walks it with his father?  No, because his parent’s hand is locked in his.  The presence of his father dismisses all his fears. 

So, when we are in the hands of our heavenly Father, we need not fear.  He who holds up worlds can protect us; He has pledged Himself to do so, if we fully trust Him.

The Word of God on Death

  • “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.” Psalm 23:4
  • “Precious in the sight of the LORD is the death of his saints.” Psalm 116:15
  • “A good name is better than precious ointment; and the day of death than the day of one’s birth.” Eccl. 7:1
  • “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.” John 5:24 
  • “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:23
  • “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” Philippians1:21
  • “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:” Heb. 9:27
  • “So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.  O death, where is thy sting?  O grave, where is thy victory?”
                                                                                                                     I Cor. 15:54-55

“The wages of sin is death.  There is no minimum wage!” — Author Unknown

Nothing to Fear

For the believer, there is nothing to fear when one dies.  For the unsaved, there is much to be afraid of.  Are you sure you are saved and going to Heaven one day?

Here is what the Bible says one must do to have the assurance of Heaven:

  • Know that you are a sinner:
    “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” Romans 3:23   Also: Romans 5:12, I John 1:10.
  • Hell is the payment for all who have sinned.
    “For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Rom. 6:23
    “Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned:” Romans 5:12
  • BUT, there is good news!  Jesus’ death on the cross is the payment for the sins of all that call upon Him for salvation!
    “That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.” Romans 10:9
    “For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.” Rom. 10:13

That is what the Bible says one must do to be saved.  Now, it is up to you to ask Jesus to save you.  Please do it now!  If you want to discuss it with someone, please e-mail me at brinkworth@frontier.com.  I would be honored to talk to you about your salvation.

Strive to live so that when you die, even the undertaker will be unhappy.”