December 2012 Questions / Answers

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The following questions are taken from emails and are printed below exactly as I received them.  Names and contact information has been removed.  The answers are in note form (sorry for any of my grammar errors) to be studied through.  You’ll have to examine each Scripture below to see the points.

 

1. “If a member is a shut-in do they need to contribute?  Can we take the Lord’s Supper to them?  If they do not contribute should we take disciplinary action?”

 

Š     Concerning a person who cannot assemble giving, I am not sure.  We are supposed to give on the first day of the week (I Corinthians 16:1-2).  If this can be accomplished, without assembling with the saints, I am not sure.  I know some have sent monies along with others to “put in the plate”.  Unless you can prove that if someone CANNOT assemble, yet is required to give, you cannot discipline that person.

Š     II Corinthians 9:7 establishes that giving has to be something purposed, not forced.  If you begin accounting for whether or not one person gives you have to do that for all.  Where is the authority for that?  How would you do that? 

Š     I do know that we cannot deliver the Lord’s Supper to anyone.  The Lord’s Supper is to be taken when the saints assemble (Acts 20:7).  The fact that we do this together is clear in that we’re even supposed to wait until all who can make it to the assembly, do so (I Corinthians 11:33).

Š     The Lord's Supper is a communion (I Corinthians 10:16).  That means it is fellowship/intercourse.  Fellowship requires joint participation.  The local church is to COME TOGETHER (I Corinthians 11:20).  The word translated "church" is an "assembly". When a part of something to be assembled is missing, that part is not assembled.

Š     The idea of a “shut-in” is a bit ambiguous.  Most, that I have met, who claim to be “shut-in” are just “shut-in” based on convenience.  They make doctor’s appointments, hair appointments, etc.  If someone is of mind and body to assemble, they must do so (Hebrews 10:23-25).

Š     When one’s health becomes an excuse not to assemble, that is a sad statement about that person’s love for God (Matthew 6:33 and Colossians 3:1-4) and their brethren (I Peter 1:22).

 

2. “When Christ died for the church, he split the temple veil thus doing away with temples which had become the focus and still is today. That is the catholic way.  Jews and Christians as well as most other religions still do it. He made every christian a minister, so we do not need a preacher, or an elder . This smacks of the catholic church and is not far removed. Why do you denounce catholics but have elders, preachers, and temples?”

 

Š     For one, the temple of the Old Testament was God’s design, not the Catholic church (I Chronicles 28:4-7; cf. I Chronicles 6:10).

Š     The term “minister” means “an attendant; servant; waiter, etc.” (Strong’s #1249).  All Christians are servants (Romans 6:22).  Though one is a servant in general, that does not mean he does not have another duty (Titus 1:1).

Š     Preachers are ordained by God, not Catholics (Romans 10:14 and I Corinthians 9:14).

Š     Elders are ordained by God, not Catholics (Acts 14:23, I Timothy 1:3-7, and Titus 1:5-9).

Š     The temple today is the body of Christ, the church.  That is not a physical structure, but the people of the Lord (I Corinthians 12:27, II Corinthians 6:16, Ephesians 5:30, and I Peter 2:5).

Š     You are correct in one thing, people have become physical structure oriented.  This is not true though of God’s real people (Hebrews 3:6)!

 

3. “I am not passing judgment on anyone.  I know we shouldn’t judge.  Why do people dress up for church?”

 

Š     First, you are incorrect in saying that we should not judge anyone (John 7:24). 

o  One time in which we are not to judge others is if we are judging hypocritically (Matthew 7:1-5).

o  Another time is if we are judging in regard to authorized liberties (Romans 14:1-4).

o  The Scriptures require us to judge others (Matthew 18:15-17, Romans 16:17-18, I John 4:1, etc.).

Š     I cannot speak for all people.  There is no scriptural “dress code” besides being modest (i.e. I Timothy 2:8-10).  For some, it is a matter of tradition.  Tradition, if taught as law or contrary to the truth, is wrong (Colossians 2:16-23).

Š     One Scriptural reason that people should present themselves before God and man in worship as nicely as possible is to show respect to God (Hebrews 12:28).  This does include our physical person (Romans 12:1).

Š     There has to be a lot of respect for personal liberties in this discussion!  What one person considers “respectful dress” is not going to be consistent for all.  No one can scripturally say someone will go to hell for not wearing a tie or a beautiful dress.  Where would that put John the baptizer (Matthew 3:1-4)? 

 

4. “Recently a man said that he saw God and talked with him face to face.  Do you believe he is lying?”

 

Š     I KNOW he is lying (Exodus 33:12-23, John 1:18, and I John 4:12).

Š     For the sake of clarity, it is not wrong to call someone a liar (John 8:43-44; 55 and Titus 1:12).

 

5. “Are the Jews God’s chosen people?”

 

Š     Under the Old Law, they were (Deuteronomy 7:1-11).

Š     Now, all men everywhere can be God’s “chosen” people (Matthew 28:19, Mark 16:15-16, Acts 17:30, Romans 3:29, Galatians 3:23-29, Ephesians 2:11-22, Ephesians 3:6, and Colossians 3:10-11).

 

6. “Is works based salvation true?”

 

Š     I am not sure what you mean by “works based salvation”.

Š     If you are asking if we have to do something to be saved, the answer is yes.  We are saved by grace (Ephesians 2:5), but we are also saved by things we must do (Matthew 7:21-28, Matthew 18:3, Mark 16:15-16, Luke 11:28, Luke 13:3, Luke 14:25-33, John 8:23-24, John 8:31-32, Acts 2:38-41, Acts 3:19, Acts 18:8, Romans 6:1-18, Romans 8:24, Romans 10:10-17, Romans 12:1-3, II Corinthians 7:1, Galatians 3:27, Philippians 2:12, Hebrews 11:6, James 1:21-25, James 2:14-26, II Peter 3:10-14, etc.).

 

7. “Jesus taught us to be fishers of men.  A fisherman uses bait.  How should we use the gospel as bait to get people into the church?”

 

Š     You have read WAY too much into Jesus’ statement.  First off, Jesus didn’t tell “us” we would be fishers of men.  He told Fishermen that they were going to do so (Matthew 4:18-22).

Š     You can know FOR SURE that Jesus wasn’t authorizing any bait to get people to obey or even hear the Gospel (II Corinthians 4:2 and I Thessalonians 2:1-5; cf. Romans 1:16).

Š     Using bait and seeing people as numbers are signs of false teachers (II Peter 2:1-3; 17-19).

Š     Finally, we do not get anyone into the church.  Being added to the church is a result of one’s obedience to the Gospel (Acts 2:38-41; 47 and Galatians 3:27).

 

8. “Do you think we should change certain words in the bible that are vulgar when teaching in the presence of children?  There are words in the bible that I would change the channel on tv if I heard them, an example of this would be the vulgar terms in Isaiah 36:12.  Should we change them when we read aloud?”

 

Š     Who says those terms are “vulgar”?  Is the word poop better than dung?  Is the word pee better than piss?  By who’s standard?  I understand that some things are not expedient to say (cf. I Corinthians 10:23), but to say something is vulgar just because you think so is to create a law that is not there.  If one were to cite Colossians 3:8 or such passages, that is a charge against inspired men!

Š     We should never change God’s word (Deuteronomy 4:2, Proverbs 30:5-6, Galatians 1:6-12, and Revelation 22:18-19).

Š     We should teach our children the Scriptures as they are written.  This is what God expects us to do (Deuteronomy 6:6-7, Deuteronomy 11:18-19, and II Timothy 3:15-17).

Š     Many words, that are considered vulgar, have appropriate meanings.  We should educate our children about those words and their appropriate meanings.

o  Ass meaning a donkey (Matthew 21:5) or a rebellious person/people (Jeremiah 2:23-24).

o  Bastard meaning a fatherless child both physically (Deuteronomy 23:2) and spiritually (Hebrews 12:8).

o  A harlot physically (Judges 16:1) and spiritually (Isaiah 1:21).

o  Terms like fornication (Romans 1:29), adultery (Exodus 20:14), lust (James 1:13-15), etc. are all terms that include very carnal thoughts.  However, they must be taught and understood as part of God’s word.

 

9. “Is it wrong to call someone a name - - like saying someone is a fool or a liar?”

 

Š     No, it is not wrong if you are accurate in what you are calling them (Isaiah 56:10-12, Matthew 16:21-23, Matthew 23:1-33, Luke 13:31-32, John 8:43-44; 55, Acts 13:6-12, Romans 10:1-3, Galatians 3:1, James 4:4, etc.).

 

 

 

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© 2012 This material may not be used for sale or other means to have financial gain.  Use this as a tool for your own studies if such is helpful!   Preachers are welcome to this work, but please do not use my work so that you can be lazy and not do your own studies.  – Brian A. Yeager