Philippians 4:8

May 30, 2021 -- Volume 5.22

Cherry Pie for Some Preachers and Other Religionists I Know
By Tommy L. McClure, (Deceased)

Apple pie, along with Chevrolet and baseball, has been regarded as one of the most American things. But, in my thinking, cherry pie is as American as apple pie ever got to be or ever will be, for: (1) It was a cherry tree little George, who later became the “father of our country,” cut down and would not lie about. (I recently read that Washington’s inaugural speech was only about 2 ½ minutes long with the quip that “politicians who won’t lie don’t have much to talk about”). (2) The streets of our nation’s capital city are lined with cherry, not apple trees, and many citizens go there at blossom time to enjoy the scenery; and (3) Valid as a reason or not, cherry pie is my favorite fruit pie!

Over the years, Janette, my beloved wife, has collected some fine recipes and I here give the one for:

Fresh Cherry Pie”

1-1/4 cups sugar
1 quart tart red cherries washed and pitted
½ tablespoons flour
1 recipe plain pastry

Mix sugar, flour, salt and cherries together. Line pie pan with pastry, add cherry mixture and cover with top crust. Bake in a very hot oven (450 F) for 10 minutes; reduce temperature to moderate (350 F); bake for 25 minutes longer. Makes one (9 inch) pie.

Though I have never made a pie, I know that if I follow the recipe to the letter I can make a tasty cherry pie. But, suppose I use the recipe like some preachers and other religionists use the Bible when defending their departures from the divine order for worship, the work of the church, and the manner of life prescribed for Christians. Those who defend the use of instrumental music in the worship of the church immediately use the “God-didn’t-say-not-to” defense, not scripture! Those who defend church dinners, church sponsored sports, entertainment, etc., use the same defense, not scripture. Defenders of dancing and social drinking use the same method, not scripture! Passing over all God says about the works of the flesh (Gal. 5:19-21), the evils of strong drink (Prov. 23:29-35; 1 Cor. 6:9.10), and the dangers of not abiding in the doctrine of Christ (2 Jn. 9-11; Matt. 15:7-9), they seem willing to rest their eternal welfare on what God has not said. But, God’s will is known by what he says, not by what he has not said!

The same is true of the above recipe. The will of the writer is expressed in what the recipe says, not by what is does not say! But, if preachers and other religionists can treat the word of God as they do, why can’t I treat the words of this recipe writer the same way? Let’s see what happens when I do.

This recipe gives all the ingredients to be used, but I am going to be like preachers and others – reckless, daring and using the same refuge they use to defend their departures.

Note that the recipe does not say, “Thou shalt not use jalapeno peppers.” Since I like hot peppers (some like instrumental music, dancing and liquor), since some say it is good for the physical system, and since the recipe the not say “Thou shalt not use jalapeno peppers,” into the mixture a cup of chopped jalapeno goes! Preachers, how is your taste for this pie now?—a pie made according to the very reasoning you expect God to accept and be pleased with!

Since some say garlic is good for the body; since many like its taste in numerous foods; since when taking garlic capsules mosquitoes don’t bother me, though at other times they “eat me up”; and since the recipe does not say, “Thou shalt not use garlic,” into the mixture a cup of chopped garlic goes. (I’ll use a cup, for as Luther Blackmon used to say, “there’s no such a thing as a little garlic!”).

Preachers and other religionists, are you ready of a piece of my cherry pie? If not, why not? This is the very thing in principle which you dish out to God, expecting Him to take and like it. I am feeding you with your own “logic” out of the same spoon! On the basis of your reasoning, I can put into this pie everything from horse radish and saw dust to Epsom salts and make as strong a defense for my actions as you make for your departures from the divine will.

I make this proposal: If you will eat the pie I have suggested, I WILL BAKE IT! Is it a deal? If you will not eat the pie, then quit using the same reasoning in principle in defense of your going onward and not abiding in the “doctrine of Christ” (2 Jn. 9-11).

Is it not strange that people will read a recipe written by an uninspired person and follow it as written, but, they read the Bible looking for ways of getting around and going beyond God’s word in their evil determination to have their way (See Isa. 55:8, 9; 66:3, 4). No wonder Hell is prepared for the disobedient (Matt. 25:41, 46; Rom. 2:6-11; 2 Thess. 1:6-10; Rev. 21:8). 

The Church of Christ
By W. Curtis Porter

Upon the cross our Savior suffered to atone for sins;
He suffered that he might redeem the souls of wayward men;
Endured the shame and agony – his life’s blood sacrificed,
He bought the church he said he’d build: his church – the Church of Christ.

His church will last through circling ages, fought by other creeds,
Its founder, Christ our Lord divine, supplies so well our needs;
The passing years cannot prevail – nor yet the gates of hell,
Twill long survive the crash of worlds for Christ has built it well.

The bride of Christ this church is called, it has an honored place,
Twill wear no other name but his for such would bring disgrace;
No bride that's to her husband true will wear some other’s name,
And thus make void her bridal vows and fill her life with shame.

The Lord’s the Savior of his church – he has but one on earth,
All other institutions here by men were given birth;
They may assist the souls of men a cleaner life to live,
Through one alone the Lord has promised endless joy to give. 

For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything. Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word, that He might present her to Himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy and without blemish. So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself. For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church” (Eph. 5:23-29, NKJV)