THE LIVING WORD TRANSCRIPT

Program Air Date - 1-22-06

LESSON TITLE: "THE BIBLE: OUR ATTITUDE TOWARD THE BIBLE"

WELCOME

In Psalm 42:1, we read, "As the deer pants for the water brooks, so pants my soul for You, O God!" Do you strive after and long for your God on this Lord's Day?

Welcome to our program and let me thank you all for joining us this day for this time of Worship to our God. It is my prayer that we are all doing our best, today and every day, to accomplish everything according to God's precious will and His eternal purpose. Won't you do your part this morning so that God may truly be praised and so that all we offer toward His throne will be done in spirit and in truth.

With these thoughts in mind, will you bow with me before His almighty throne in prayer.

(PRAYER)

Now it's time to join in our first song of the morning. Our first hymn of the asks us a question about our salvation. So, won't you join in with the congregation at this time as we sing together, "Are You Washed In The Blood."

(SONG # 1)

DEVOTIONAL THOUGHTS

The Bible mentions silver and gold a lot. These ideas are used to help us understand the different types of service we might offer to our Lord. In Proverbs 17:3, Solomon said, "The refining pot is for silver and the furnace for gold, but the Lord tests the hearts." You see, we all have to be tested throughout or lives and eventually at the judgement, but notice the clear judge which we will have to face - God!

In the New Testament we have the same idea presented by the Apostle Peter, when he said, "that the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ," 1 Peter 1:7. Notice again the idea here of our faith being tested, but how? Well, just as gold is tested by fire, we are tested as well. However, also notice the things which we are striving to accomplish at the revelation of Jesus. The text says that we must strive to have been found as those who praise, honor and glorify our God! What a privilege we have in this life to do all things for the sake of Jesus.

So we might ask this morning, "when God tests you with fire how will you stand up to the test?" Why not choose today to put God first in your life and to do everything you can in life to bring praise, honor and glory to His name!

We are happy to have brother Ivie Powell with us as our guest speaker of the day. As you may remember, brother Powell is the minister for the Curry Street Church of Christ in West Plains Missouri. We thank brother Ivie for being with us this day and we look forward to him guiding our thoughts on God's Word this morning.

As far as our main study of the day, we will be continuing our discussion on "The Bible." Our specific lesson of the morning will deal with, "Our Attitude Toward The Bible." So please stay with us this morning and after our next song together, brother Powell will lead us in this study of the day. But for now let's join together in our second song of the morning. The name of this hymn, "Bring Christ Your Broken Life."

(SONG # 2)

LESSON

Speaker: Ivie Powell

"The churches of Christ salute you," Romans 16:16. Thank you, brother Sullins. I appreciate very much the opportunity of once again being back on this program. I would like to encourage the brethren throughout this area to support the School of Preaching at Kansas Expressway. I have known many of the instructors for a long period of time. Mr. Max Patterson and Bro. Ted Clarke are two outstanding scholars. The school is doing wonderful work. So I would encourage the brethren throughout the area to support this school financially as well as with their prayers and encourage their young men to attend The Bible Institute of Missouri.

We, at the Curry Street church of Christ, would like to invite you this morning to be with us for Bible Study at 9:30, the morning assembly at 10:30. Then we will, the Lord willing, meet back at 6:00 p.m. for the evening service. We also have services every Wednesday evening at 7:00 p.m.

The theme "The Bible" is a great theme. Give me the Bible. Nothing is more important than studying the Word of God. David said long ago, "Oh how love I thy law. It is my meditation all the day," Psalm 119, verse 97. We, of course, live under the New Testament dispensation and the New Testament dispensation, of course, has been revealed to us in holy scripture. When we look at the religious world at large, we find that it is in a state of confusion. People understand clearly verses such as, "Upon this rock, I will build My church and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it," Matthew 16:18. And yet, when they read of one church, they look and they see hundreds and thousands of religious institutions. And so, my friend, the question that I would like for you to consider this morning is this: What is really the difference in the church of Christ and all other religious institutions?

Now it is true that we differ in name, doctrine and organization, and many other areas, but actually there is one basic difference and that is our attitude towards the Word of God. How should one view the Word of God? Well, in the limited amount of time, we're going to look at three words that we have looked at before, but I want to refresh your memory. One is the word "perfection." The other is the word "authority." The third is the word "power." The Bible is the perfect Word of God. The Bible says that "all scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction in righteousness that the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works." And thus, when you look at those verses, again the reference is 2 Timothy 3:16-17, you will find that the Bible claims to be the complete inspired Will of God. Now that means that this message did not come from the mind of man. Now a lot of people would say, "Well, that's what a lot of religious groups would say." But what we need to understand is that when we say that the Bible is the inspired Word of God, it means that when John laid the pen of revelation down after writing the book of Revelation, that inspiration ceased. There are no latter day revelations. Now a lot of times, folks will come to your door and tell you that their leader had a revelation. My friend, Paul lets us know that there are no latter day revelations (Galatians 1:8-9). So we must look upon the Word of God as the inspired inerrant, all authoritative Word of God. The word "authority" is the second word.

The source of authority has always been an area that people are interested in. A lot of times people have the idea that the living church is the source of authority, but the Bible doesn't teach this at all. Others have the idea, "Well, you just let your conscience be your guide," and that is the source of authority, but again, the Bible doesn't teach this. As a matter of fact, the Bible lets us know that "it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps." So when you look at Jeremiah 10 verse 23, and then turn to Proverbs 14, you will find in about verse 12 that "there are many ways that seem right unto man, but the end thereof are the ways of death." So man's conscience is not a safe guide. It is not that which determines the right or the wrongness of anything. Others will hold to counsels and conferences as their source of authority. My friend, the Bible lets us know that "all authority resides in Jesus Christ," Matthew 28, verse 18. He made known that authority to the apostles and the apostles were God's delegated representatives on the earth. They were His chosen ambassadors. Paul speaks of that in 2 Corinthians 5 and verse 20. And thus, "when our Lord left, the Holy Spirit was sent to guide the apostles into all of the truth," John 16 and verse 13. And so, the source of authority for that which we do is not man but the scripture. God has set forth in His Word that which we need to know regarding Him: How to become a Christian, How to live a Christian life, all that is necessary for our salvation. So Peter says that "the Lord has given unto us all things that pertains to life and godliness," 2 Peter 1 and verse 3. And so when we do something, we do it in the name of Christ by His authority (Colossians 3:17.) That means that when God speaks, that settles the matter. We therefore must go by a thus sayeth the Lord. I might add that the silence on the scriptures on a given subject means that we need to respect the silence of the scriptures.

A hundred years ago, a division unfortunately occurred within churches of Christ. Some would say that it was over the instrument and the Missionary Society, but that really wasn't the issue at stake. That which caused the division was attitude towards the Word of God. There were those who felt that they could use instruments of music in New Testament worship, although the Bible were silent on that subject. They could not go to the Bible and from the New Testament find one command for the use of instruments of music in worship. They could not find one Bible example where a congregation ever used instruments of music in worship. They could not find one inference that instruments were approved of God. Yet, they said, "Well, because the Bible doesn't say not to do it, we will do it." My friend, the silence means that God wants us to be silent. He wants us to realize that the kind of music that is authorized in New Testament worship is vocal music (Ephesians 5:19). So when we speak of authority, we're speaking of that which is known in scripture that we are to do.

Then thirdly, there is the word "Power." A lot of people do not recognize the complete and inspired Word of God or the authority of the Word of God because they fail to recognize the power of the Word of God. The power, my friend, is not in human beings. It is not in the speaker's ability. It is not in his education attainment. The power is in the Word of God. "The Word of God is quick and powerful and sharper than any two-edged sword," Hebrews 4 and verse 12. "The Word of God is God's power unto salvation," Romans 1, verse 16. It was the Word of God that was preached on the day of Pentecost. It was the Word of God that pricked the hearts of those people and they said, "Men and brethren, what shall we do?" And they were told to "repent and be baptized, every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit," Acts 2:37-38. It's the Word of God that we're to "go and preach to every creature in the world," Mark 16:15-16. It is the Word of God that will enlighten us. Look at Psalm 119, verse 130. It is the Word of God that the Lord expects us to study (2 Timothy chapter 2 and verse 15). "Therein, there in the Bible, God is given everything that is needful for our salvation," 2 Peter 1 and verse 3. It is the Word that we are "to preach in season and out of season," 2 Timothy chapter 4, verse 1-2. So my friend, there is power in the Word of God.

When someone says, "I don't care what the Bible says. I know how I feel." Then what they're doing is that they are rejecting God and God's Word. The Bible says in John 12 and verse 48, "He that rejecteth Me and receiveth not My Word, the same that I've spoken unto him, the same shall judge him in the last day." And so, my friend, it is a serious matter to reject the Word of God.

The Word of God is not to be exchanged for the commandments of men. An interesting passage is found in Mark chapter 7 about verse 7-9. The Lord let it be known that those people had rejected the commandments of God for their human traditions and as a result of that, God did not accept their worship. That means, my friend, that if we are rejecting the Word of God for human traditions, God will not accept our worship. "But in vain do they worship Me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men." Look at Matthew 15 and start at verse 8 and read on down in that chapter. Will worship is not acceptable in the sight of God. Paul discusses that by the way in Colossians the second chapter. So the worship that God will accept is worship that is "in spirit and in truth," John 4:24. Therefore, we must be sincerely following the Word of God in order for God to accept our worship.

My friend, without the Bible we are in a state of darkness and ignorance. The Word of God enlightens us. Paul speaks of the glorious light of the gospel of Christ in 2 Corinthians 4 and verse 4. It will bring understanding to the mind if we will open its pages, intently study the scriptures, believe the scriptures, obey the scriptures and as a result of that, we will be found well pleasing in the sight of Almighty God.

I am very satisfied with the Word of God. I abhor and I reject all human traditions and I hope and pray that that is your attitude, as well. May our attitude be, "Speak Lord, thy servant heareth. Command and I will obey." No, the Lord is not going to speak directly to us, but He speaks to us through His Inspired Word, and as we turn to the Inspired Word, we can learn how to become a Christian as they did on the day of Pentecost when they were convicted of their sins. As stated, they wanted to know what to do and Peter told them, and thus they did repent of their sins and they were baptized for the remission of their sins. What did they become a part of, my friend? Well, the Bible lets us know in Acts 2 and verse 47 that the Lord added them to the church where are the saved. Now which church were they added to? Why, they were added to the church of the Lord, the church that you read about in the New Testament, the church that Paul spoke of when he said, "the churches of Christ salute you," in Romans 16:16. And as a member of the body of Christ, that same individual will study the scriptures that they might grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. They will add to their lives the Christian virtues that Peter speaks of in 2 Peter chapter 1, verse 5-7, and as they go through life, they will try to teach others the gospel of Jesus Christ and then those who have fallen by the wayside, they will try to reclaim them to the Lord.

My friend, how do you look upon the Word of God? We would like to encourage you to assemble with the nearest church of Christ today. We certainly would love to have you at the Curry Street church of Christ. We meet at 111 South Curry Street. Bring your Bible. Bring pencil and paper and as Isaiah said long ago, "Come let us reason together," Isaiah 1 and verse 18. Let us go back to the Bible. Let us speak where the Bible speaks and remain silent where it is silent doing Bible things in Bible ways. Let us simply be a Christian, a member of the same church that Peter, Paul, James and John and all early Christians were members of, the church that you read about in the New Testament.

Thank you for being with us. Until next time, have a very pleasant day. (SONG # 3 - "Because He Lives!")

CLOSING COMMENTS

As always it was great to have you join us this morning. I hope our time together has been uplifting and profitable to all. We invite you back every Sunday morning at 7:30, as we commit ourselves to this worship to God!

But for now let me ask if you have any questions or comments about today's lesson? Maybe, you would like a free transcript or a cassette tape of this program? Possibly, we could assist you with free Bible materials or correspondence courses? No matter what your need is, please contact us at the following address:

The Living Word 2540 N. Kansas Expressway Springfield, Mo. 65803

Many of these items are also available on our website, that address: www.thelivingwordprogram.com

Or if you prefer, you may call us at: (417)869-2284

Brethren and friends, our attitude toward the Bible does make a difference! Do you honor and respect the Word of God as His complete, perfect and truly Inspired Will?

(Program closing)