Philippians 4:8

August 18, 2019 -- Volume 3.34

We Walk By Faith”
By James E. Coope

Therefore, being always of good courage, and knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord – for we walk by faith, not by sight” (2 Cor. 5:6-7).

The Bible often uses “walk” as a metaphor for one’s manner of conduct. Life is a journey; we are merely “sojourners and pilgrims” here. An old hymn says, “this world is not my home; I’m just a passing through....” In the body we are “absent from the Lord,” but like Paul, we “walk by faith...” and “make it our aim to always be well-pleasing” to God (2 Cor. 5:2-9). Our choices are made with respect to things, which are unseen, rather than to those which are seen (cf. 2 Cor. 4:16-18).

Although we cannot see God, Christ, the Holy Spirit, and Heaven with our eyes, we have complete confidence that they are real, and we act accordingly.

Whether we see or do not see does not alter their nature or importance, nor does it make it improper to act with reference to them. Faith enables us to see when the eye cannot. It makes easy the most self-sacrificial service required of us (cf. Abraham, Genesis 22). It enables us to endure sore trials without murmuring. When dangers arise, it lights our path and gives us courage. It enables us to overcome doubt and temptations for we believe that “Faith is the victory that overcomes the world!”

We do not “walk by sight.” One walks by sight when he is motivated only by the approval of other people. He walks by sight when he makes mammon his god...when he lives for getting and hoarding or spending and squandering...when he estimates worth by wealth, or property. A man walks by sight when he cannot control his appetite or passion; when he cannot put aside things “good for food and pleasant to the eyes” for the sake of tomorrow’s sickness, or a life of disgrace; when  he finds himself again and again yielding to the same temptation from which he has suffered. Weakly lives and miserably dies the one who is a slave of what his better nature condemns and despises, but to which his fleshly appetite, long made a tyrant by yielding to it, ties and binds him. – Collegevue church of Christ Bulletin, September 2, 2018

Who Is Narrow-Minded?
By Irvin Himmel

“You are the most narrow-minded person I ever met,” said one who scarcely knows an apostle from an epistle, speaking to a friend who has strong convictions. Enamored with the idea of broad-mindedness, some people are so liberal in their thinking that they try to believe anything and everything and end up believing nothing.

Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6). If this statement has any meaning at all, it conveys the thought that Jesus Christ is man’s only access to the Father. Any attempt to reach God apart from the mediatorship of Jesus ignores God’s plan of approach. Was Jesus narrow-minded in presenting this teaching?

John wrote, “He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him” (1 John 2:4). According to John, all who profess to know the Lord but do not keep his commandments are liars. Only the people who are faithful in keeping his commandments really know the Lord. Was John narrow-minded in making such a statement?

Paul taught, “There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Lord, one faith, one baptism, One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all” (Eph. 4:4,5). Today, there are many bodies, numerous faiths, and it is openly declared that one church is as good as another. Was the apostle Paul narrow-minded?

Jude emphatically stated that the faith was “once delivered unto the saints” (Jude 3). Some modern religions are based on the doctrine of progressive revelation. Their proponents tell us to be broad-minded and accept what has been delivered to the saints through latter-day “prophets.” Was Jude narrow-minded?

Peter wrote that “baptism doth also now save us” (1 Pet. 3:21). He urged sinners to “Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins” (Acts 2:38). People tell me that I am bigoted if I think one must be baptized to be saved. Was Peter narrowminded?

James wrote, “Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.” Most denominations say justification is by faith only. When I say the denominations are wrong on this point and quote James 2:24, people tell me that I am narrow and intolerant. Was James narrow-minded?

Matthew records that Jesus was born of a virgin in fulfillment of prophecy (Matt. 1:18-23). Modern theologians tell us in pious tones that we should be liberal-minded and not argue that Jesus was actually virgin-born. Was the apostle Matthew narrow-minded?

The Bible says, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth” (Gen. 1:1). No other explanation is offered for the origin of the universe. Now men tell us we should be open-minded and put human theories on equality with, or even above, the creationist view. Is the Bible narrow?

If it be admitted that such persons as Peter, James, John, Paul, Jude, Matthew, and even Jesus Christ our Lord were narrow, I am in good company when I am charged with being narrow-minded for teaching what they taught. If it be acknowledged that the Bible is narrow, I plead guilty to the same narrowness, for I believe the Bible!

Anyone who restricts his way of life by following rules and laws will be considered narrow-minded by all who dislike such rules and laws. Anyone who insists upon accuracy and exactness, whether in reasoning or in work, will be viewed as narrow-minded by all who are loose and careless. Anyone who thinks, studies, and forms definite conclusions will be labeled narrow-minded by all who in ignorance and indecision vacillate from one state of mind to another. Any who practice moral restraint are considered narrow-minded by people who desire unrestrained carnal indulgence. One who attempts to closely follow a standard will be charged with narrow-mindedness by others who wish to deviate from that standard. A conservative is always narrow-minded to a liberal. A Christian is narrow-minded to the worldly individual and to the unbeliever.

Oh, I almost forgot to mention that the way to heaven is “narrow.” Open your Bible and read Matthew 7:13, 14. – Truth Magazine, April 4, 1974

By Kyle Campbell

Have you ever noticed how the world promotes dissatisfaction? We are constantly bombarded with something newer and better that will make our lives complete once we buy it. If we listen to the world, we will always be comparing the lifestyles and possessions of others with our own, and we will always be dissatisfied. Paul had enjoyed the benefits and pleasures of life, yet he could give them all up and still be filled with the joy of the Lord. His contentment did not depend on his environment but on his obedience to Christ (Phil. 4:11). Contentment frees you to enjoy everything good God has given you (Jas. 1:17). Work hard to be grateful for all that God has given you. Collegevue church of Christ Bulletin, November 23, 2014