The Worship Of Churches Of
By: Brian A. Yeager
In the past two articles we have discussed how there is a growing trend amongst churches of Christ to teach that sin is okay. If you have not read those two articles, you should read them before you read this one. If you do not have access to the printed copies, you can read these articles online at the following links: http://www.wordsoftruth.net/wotvol13/wotbulletin06092013.html; http://www.wordsoftruth.net/wotvol13/wotbulletin06162013.html.
Those congregations that have fallen prey to the false doctrine that sin is okay are apostate congregations. What we are going to see in this study is that God does completely, wholly, fully, absolutely, not accept their worship. One cannot be an honest Bible student and think otherwise. Even in the Old Testament, one sinner amongst God’s people destroyed the entire congregation’s relationship with God (Joshua 7:1-26). One sinner destroys much good (Ecclesiastes 9:18). That was under the Old Law. Now, under the Law of Christ, God has much greater expectations of perfection from His people (Acts 17:30; cf. Matthew 5:48 and I Peter 1:13-16).
God’s people are expected to have NO fellowship with unfruitful works of darkness (Ephesians 5:11). If I am in fellowship with those who are sinning, I am guilty by association with that person. Notice: “Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ, hath not God. He that abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son. If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed: For he that biddeth him God speed is partaker of his evil deeds” (II John 9-11). Partaking in the evil deeds of others makes you a transgressor (II Corinthians 6:14-18 and I Timothy 5:22). Understand this point. When there is a sinner amongst us that we’ve not dealt with in bringing back to God or withdrawing from, we are sinning (II Thessalonians 3:6; 14-15 and Revelation 2:14-16).
What we need to understand is, as we shall see in this study, sin keeps you from being able to worship God. When you are sinning your worship is in vain. The Bible is abundantly clear in stating this. Therefore, as we proceed, we are going to allow the Scriptures to put the exclamation point on our study. The Scriptures teach us that while in sin, God does not accept our worship.
The Worship Of Sinners Is Unacceptable To God
God’s word shows that when people sin, they must repent of those sins before coming to God in worship. Notice: “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land” (II Chronicles 7:14). When you sin, you are not close to God. You have to repent of those sins and draw nearer to Him yourself (Isaiah 1:11-16 and James 4:8-10).
Worship from sinners is not acceptable to God. Notice these Scriptures: “The LORD is far from the wicked: but he heareth the prayer of the righteous… He that turneth away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer shall be abomination… Behold, the LORD'S hand is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy, that it cannot hear: But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear… Hear, O earth: behold, I will bring evil upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not hearkened unto my words, nor to my law, but rejected it. To what purpose cometh there to me incense from Sheba, and the sweet cane from a far country? your burnt offerings are not acceptable, nor your sacrifices sweet unto me… Thus saith the LORD unto this people, Thus have they loved to wander, they have not refrained their feet, therefore the LORD doth not accept them; he will now remember their iniquity, and visit their sins. Then said the LORD unto me, Pray not for this people for their good. When they fast, I will not hear their cry; and when they offer burnt offering and an oblation, I will not accept them: but I will consume them by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence… Now we know that God heareth not sinners: but if any man be a worshipper of God, and doeth his will, him he heareth… I will therefore that men pray every where, lifting up holy hands, without wrath and doubting… For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil” (Proverbs 15:29, Proverbs 28:9, Isaiah 59:1-2, Jeremiah 6:19-20, Jeremiah 14:10-12, John 9:31, I Timothy 2:8, and I Peter 3:12).
You have to tear the verses that you just read out of your Bible to think that you could worship God acceptably while still in sin. It is just plain dishonest to teach people that God is okay with them while they are sinning. That is foolish. I cannot fathom how anyone could believe such a thing. On top of that, those who are worshipping God while in sin are just adding sin to sin. You see that clearly when you examine what the Lord says in regard to remembering His death.
Eating And Drinking Damnation To Your Soul
What happens to sinners when they partake of the Lord’s Supper? Notice: “For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come. Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body” (I Corinthians 11:23-29).
For those who might read this article who are sin, you have two choices. You can repent or you can perish (Luke 13:3; 5). Don’t press forward worshipping God like all is okay. You’re not okay. God is not accepting your vain worship. If you’re amongst a church of sin, urge repentance. If they ignore the truth, depart from them (Psalms 26:4-5, Proverbs 9:6, Jeremiah 15:17, and I Timothy 6:3-5).
Volume 13 – Issue 40 - June 23rd, 2013