Posted on

Violations of God’s Marriage Law (II): Types

In the first article, we sought to establish (1) God does have a marriage law; (2) it can be and often is violated; (3) the consequences of that violation is sin; (4) unless that sin is forgiven one is lost and cannot enter heaven; and (5) to have those sins forgiven, one must comply with God’s terms of forgiveness, if he is a child of God or an alien. Now, we would like to focus our attention on types of violations. You may be surprised to see us point to this aspect of the subject. However, I suggest to you that herein lies the potential for prevention. Knowing is not enough; an essential part of being able to avoid mistakes and wrongs is to know what mistakes and wrongs are.

I. Default (withholding or deprivation, 1 Cor. 7:2-5). Every man is to have his “own wife.” Likewise, every woman is to have her own husband. A husband that does not give himself to his wife is not observing God’s rules! Likewise, a wife that does not give herself to her own husband is violating the law of God. Worse things have occurred in the marriage relationship due to this basic violation. Prostitutes have recognized this (some have said that if wives served their husbands well they would be put out of business). Such is true. I am convinced that if some husbands had endeavored to satisfy their wives as they deserved, then “another man” would not and could not have entered the picture.

Marriage is designed to meet a very basic need of man, the sexual drive, which is a part of every “normal” man and woman. Paul, the inspired apostle of the Lord pointed to that and specifically charged each not to “defraud ye one the other;” he pointed to the danger that one is placed in when he has withheld from him that which is to be supplied in the marriage relationship. “Satan” is well aware of that basic need and will. take advantage of the deprivation to “tempt you . . . for your incontinency” (v. 5). Abstinence in this area is to be done only with the “consent” of both, only for a short duration, and for a higher purpose (“that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; . . .”). I suggest that a violation of this basic need has led to many a broken home and broken lives; it will produce a multitude of souls in hell for an eternity.

“Love” of the wife by the husband is demanded by the Lord (Eph. 5:25). He who withholds this is violating God’s law, depriving his wife, and injuring his potential for happiness here and now and forever. Submission of the wife to her “own” husband is, likewise, demanded by the Lord (Eph. 5:22). She who withholds this is disobeying God, hurting her husband as well as those who view her life as a Christian, and playing in the flames of hell. May we, beloved, see the Lord’s law. Believe it. Be careful that we apply it, speak it, and love it! Be not violaters of God’s law, least ye be broken by it!

II. Triangle (creating a three party system 1 Cor. 6:16-18). By bringing in a third party, one is guilty of turning a two-party-God-approved relationship into a three-party-God-disapproved relationship. At this point, it is necessary that we look at the meaning of two words: adultery and fornication. English generally distinguishes between them on the basis of being married or unmarried; (1) “fornication” being defined as sexual intercourse between unmarried individuals and (2) “adultery” being between a married person and one other than the one to whom he is married. The Greek words from which these words are translated are: (1) Porneia-fornication; it is the general term that is used to describe all kinds of illicit sexual intercourse; (2) Moicheia-adultery is the specific act of illicit, unlawful sexual intercourse between a married person and another. So, in the New Testament, the ford fornication is the broader term and would, at times, embrace the concept of “adultery” too. But, I suggest to you that there are at least three types of “adultery” spoken of in the New Testament (Matt. 5:28 “heart”; Matt. 19:9 “marry another”; Jn. 8:4 the “act”).

Fornication is a unique sin (1 Cor. 6:16-18). Paul mentions that “every sin” that a man commits, other than fornication, is “without the body;” but fornication is sinning “against his own body.” This verse tells us something about the meaning of being “one flesh.” So, the point, if I understand it, is that when people are “joined” together in the sexual union they are the “one flesh.” This is not saying necessarily that fornication is the worst sin that can be committed, or that it is really any worse than another. But it is saying that it is different from all others, or else I am missing the point completely.

He who will serve God cannot tolerate this sin. God did not tolerate it with Israel (Jer. 3:8). A person who commits fornication in weak moments and then asks to be forgiven, should be forgiven (Lk. 17:3-4). However, when one continues to commit this sin and does not repent and turn to God, a person who is dedicated to God must withdraw from that relationship. A person who will continue to allow such sin to be committed without withdrawing and denouncing it will become a party to the sin (1 Cor. 5:6). Evil is to be recognized, denounced, and separated from (2 Cor. 6:15-18). In our land today, the concept that extra-marital sexual relations is being advanced as being “good” and necessary to “save” some marriages. Such is ungodliness at its peak!

III. Divorce (Putting away a person who has not been unfaithful). Jesus said to “put away,” saving for the cause of fornication, is to cause “adultery” to be committed. Thus, that person who puts away for any other reason would be guilty of violating God’s law. He who so acts, places a person in a position that he is deprived of a need and, thus, tempts him to become a part of a relationship that is not approved of God. Marriage is entered so as to fulfill this need, along with other needs that we have already mentioned. So, let every person who is about to take this step think! Look and see where it will lead.

God tells us that He “hateth putting away: . . .” (Mal. 2:16). Paul dealt with the same concept, as we have noticed before (1 Cor. 7:10-11). First, determine to never depart, but if that step is taken, then be sure that you remain unmarried or be reconciled to the one from whom you departed. Not, enough is spoken about this by teachers and thus young people grow up ignorant of the Lord’s teachings. Therefore, they plunge head-long into something that is to be for life, thinking if it does not work we will “try again.” Are Christians guiltless who allow this to happen, without having done all to advocate the truth of God’s word? I think not!

IV. Remarriage (Matt. 19:9). If a man puts away a wife without her having committed fornication and then marries another, the Bible is as clear as can be that he is guilty of “adultery.” If the one that is put away marries another both she and the one she marries is guilty of adultery. In other words, if two people are married, they divorce and remarry without fornication being committed, then there are four people guilty of “adultery.” This principle is disregarded by many and denied and denounced as “untrue” by many others; some of them claim membership in the “Church of Christ.”

Paul deals with this point in Rom. 7:2-3, not using the exception. If while her husband lives, she be married to “another man” then she is an “adulteress.” Question: a woman marries another man while her husband is alive, so the Bible says that she is an adulteress; now ten years passes, is she any less an adulteress than when it first occurred? What about after twenty years? In fact does time have any bearing on the matter? No! It does not matter if it is fifty years later, she is still an “adulteress.”

Some try to say this woman would be guilty of polyandry. However, the Holy Spirit did not cause Paul to call her a polyandrist; rather he called her an “adulteress.” However, the people who charge her with being a polyandrist would admit that she could not remain such and be pleasing to God; the extent of time she remained would have nothing to do with taking the guilt away. She would have to cease being a polyandrist, if she wanted to become a “saint,” one sanctified by God’s grace and cleansed in the blood of Christ.

There are many theories regarding the violations of God’s marriage law, the consequences, and/ or application of the truth. The next two papers shall be an effort to examine those different theories which are presented by brethren on this matter. I hope that your interest will continue, and that you will give a fair hearing to the things that are said. Then after you clearly understand these concepts, you will evaluate them in the light of God’s word. Having done that, you will then decide what is required of you as an individual; also, you will need then to decide what you feel is required of the congregation of which you are a member.

In closing, however, let us ask the question: Have you violated God’s law in regard to this or any other matter? If so, have you met the requirements to have the transgression forgiven? If not, will you not meet those requirements before it is too late, and you have to suffer the consequences? My prayer is that you have complied with God’s requirements.

Truth Magazine XXI: 44, pp. 697-698

November 10, 1977

Posted on Leave a comment

THE STORMS OF LIFE (Lk. 8:23; Acts 27:15-20;Heb. 12:18; 2 Pet. 2:17)

      “24  And, behold, there arose a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he was asleep. 25  And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish. 26  And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm.” Matt. 8:24-28)

      “23  But as they sailed he fell asleep: and there came down a storm of wind on the lake; and they were filled with water, and were in jeopardy. 24  And they came to him, and awoke him, saying, Master, master, we perish. Then he arose, and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water: and they ceased, and there was a calm.

25  And he said unto them, Where is your faith? And they being afraid wondered, saying one to another, What manner of man is this! for he commandeth even the winds and water, and they obey him.” (Lk. 8:23-25)

Introduction: We have just witnessed a great storm, destructive of property and lives. As I heard of, saw, and  listen to discussion on the matter, it appears to me to look at the matter.

1. There were storm in of the New Testament time, and

2. There are storms of different kinds today.

3. In that dangers are surrounding us, and we need to be prepared to react. However, some of the most dangerous, are spiritual rather than in the weather.

Wind (STORM) of doctrine (Eph. 4:14).

“That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;”

A. One can be, and many are tossed  to and fro by

B. Carried about by

C. Nature of” Slight of men cunning craftiness “2940. kubeia, koo-bi’-ah; from  kubos (a “cube”, i.e. die for playing); gambling, i.e. (fig.) artifice or fraud:–sleight.”

D. Lie in wait to deceive

     1. Aim

      2. Means

Understand that as people feel and find shelter of safety, we need to thus flee and find protection in the safe provision of God –In Christ.

A. He was there able to calm the sea

     1. He was able

     2. He did

B. The disciples were amazed that he was able, and so should we SEE

     the advantage of being there too

     1. He has invited all of us Matt. 11:28-30

     2. His grace has appeared to each/all Tit. 2:11-12.

Paul and His captures were in a storm with much damage, because the people in charge didn’t listen to his advise –being an apostle. (Acts 27:10-44)

Some storms –with destructive forces involved, from which we need to FLEE!

A. Immorality

     1. Works of the flesh listed  (1 Cor. 6:9-11; Gal. 5:19-21)

     2. All are tempted, but must understand and thus flee! 1 Cor.

         6:18;210:14; 1 Tim. 6:11; 2 Tim. 2:22

B. Family forces at times lead and push away from the Lord –in   

     Various way.

     1. Must not allow love for to keep from serving faithfully the Lord

         First (Matt. 10:36-38)

     2. Must not all desire for pleasure or material things to keep from

         serving the lord faithfully!

C. Church problems can develop and push or pull us away from faithful service to the Lord.

D. Lose of loved ones. — one can become bitter at the lord for allowing

     such to happen.

    1. Boys who lost father

    2. WE may not understand everything, but BY FAITH we must               

         listen to, trust, and obey the Lord in all things!

Conclusion: Beloved, are you aware of some of the difficulties that may have forces to destroy you most valued possession –you soul?

1. Have you faith to flee to the place for safety –In Christ (Eph. 1:3)

2. You can by believing in Christ, repenting of your sins, confessing your faith, and being baptized, and then walking uprightly, being faithful to the Lord.

3. If you are not in that shelter of safety, now is the time to act! Become a member of the Lord’s body or be restored to that position!

Posted on

Violations of God’s Marriage Laws (I)














In our land today there are so many marriage problems; divorce increased 109 percent from 1962 to 1974! In each divorce there is a violation of God’s law involved. That being true, then souls are in danger. In addition to that, hearts are saddened in each and every case of divorce. Therefore, I wish to look at this subject, challenging our minds to consider the matter seriously. I hope that we may be able to better understand the subject, so that we may keep ourselves as God would have us and, then, possibly to assist others to avoid the dangers and heartache.

I am well aware of the emotional aspect of this subject and the difficulty of discussing it objectively. However, I challenge each reader to consider the concept and the consequences as objectively as possible. First, try hard to understand the idea-what is involved and the basis for it; secondly, evaluate it which can be done only after one really and accurately understands it; thirdly, think in terms of individual and congregational response to the teachings. It is not an easy subject to deal with, regardless of the position that you hold or the approach you choose. The hardness is due to these facts: (1) so many people are involved; (2) it deals with one of the most important relationships of mankind Yet these factors make it even more reasonable that we try hard to understand and act rightly.

1. God does have a law, regarding marriage. Some deny that we are under “any law” today. They proclaim loudly that we are under “grace.” They can and do point to the scriptures, which on the surface seem to support their view: “. . . for ye are not under the law, but under grace” (Rom. 6:14). Other passages Gal. 2:16; Rom. 5:20-21; seem to support that idea.

However, before one accepts that proposition, I would refer him to some other passages which show that this view is not correct: “. . . (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without the law” (1 Cor. 9:21). “Bear ye one another’s burden, and fulfil the law of Christ” (Gal. 6:2). “But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed (Jas. 1:25). God’s grace is extended through teachings (Tit. 2:11-12; Acts 20:32). That grace that brings salvation has appeared and it teaches us to deny some things and to do others. The word of His grace is a source of strength by which we as Christians are to build. That book, which is a part of His grace, will be the standard by which we are judged (Jn. 12:48; Jas. 2:12). So, it is a “perfect” law and it gives freedom; thus it is a book or law of “liberty.” He who will reject that and continue to proclaim that we are not under law but under grace is not going to be helped by God’s grace, until and unless he has a change of heart.

God’s law on marriage consists of all He has said on the subject that is applicable today! Therefore, we need, I suggest, to gather all that He has said on the subject and then separate that which is not applicable today. For example, we see from Matt. 19:8 that some things were given because of hard hearts; likewise, in 1 Cor. 7:26 we are told that some things were for the “present distress;” thus they would not be applicable today. Passages that are to be considered as being in this law are: Gen. 2:24-25; Matt. 19:4-9; Mk. 10:2-12; Lk. 16:18; Rom. 7:2-3; 1 Cor. 7:1-6. Other passages may be relevant too. But, surely these passages are adequate to convince the unprejudiced mind that we are under a “law” today. It is the law of Christ.

Some of the main points of that law then are: (1) One male and one female being joined together with God having a part in making and establishing that relationship (Matt. 19:6; Mk. 10:9). They are to leave father and mother and cleave unto one another and this is to be for life; (2) There is a three-fold purpose in marriage. Companionship is the first mentioned (Gen. 2:18). Procreation-bearing children-is a second purpose to be achieved in marriage (1 Tim. 2:15; 5:14). To prevent immorality is a third reason for marriage (1 Cor. 7:2-5). (3) Not to put away one the other in the marriage relationship is an important part of the Lord’s Law for man today (1 Cor. 7:10).

From the above we conclude that God does have a law for people today to govern and regulate men and women in this primary relationship. This relationship is the most important of all relationships which every person is a part of in our society. This relationship functions to mold and shape the character of each individual; as the family goes, so goes the society. God, being concerned about the people, their state here and now, and their eternal destiny, has given rules, laws, or regulations to assist man in his’ character-building and earthly behavior which affects his whole being both temporarily and eternally.

II. Violations can occur! Vows taken can be violated. As two people are joined together in marriage, there is an exchanging of vows. Each person promises to take and recognize the other as his lawfully wedded spouse. They promise to love, cherish, and care for each other in all kinds of circumstances. They promise to “forsake” all others and to keep themselves for each other exclusively. These promises are made before other witnesses and usually before God-that is, mention of His name is made in many cases but of course not by all. However, Christians recognize that God has a part in the marriage if it is a real marriage, even if God’s name is not mentioned. The scriptures point to the seriousness of taking a “vow” and then not keeping it (Ecc. 5:4-5; Deut. 23:21-22).

Scriptures are violated both positively and negatively when a divorce occurs! Jesus says if a man puts away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, he causes her to commit “adultery” (Mt. 5:32). He also says that if a man puts away his wife, except it be for fornication and marries another, he commits adultery and he who marries the one put away commits adultery (Matt. 19:9). In Matt. 5:32 when Jesus said that when a man puts away his wife without fornication he causes her to commit adultery, He evidently was saying that she is placed in a condition that is very likely to cause her to remarry and thus “commit” adultery. Some have tried to make the Lord say the moment that a woman is put away for no cause of her own she is guilty of adultery. That is neither reasonable nor scriptural.

Paul, expanding somewhat upon what Jesus had said, in I Cor. 7 said that neither the husband nor the wife is to “depart” (v. 10). “But,” he continued, if a departure does take platc, then “let her remain unmarried, or be reconciled to her husband; . . .” (v. 11). The same principles apply to the husband, as is stated in the last clause of the verse. He, also, deals with the believer and the unbeliever’s relationship and obligations and privileges (vs. 12-16). The believer is obligated to remain in the relationship with the unbeliever if the unbeliever wishes to retain this relationship. However, each individual is to place the Lord first (Matt. 10:37-39; Lk. 14:25-33); if one cannot maintain this relationship and serve the Lord too, then he is to choose to serve the Lord. The believer is not to “depart” from his unbelieving spouse, but if the unbelieving spouse depart for this reason, then the believer is to remain faithful to God and allow the unbeliever to “depart.” If a spouse dies, the living can remarry “only in the Lord” (1 Cor. 7:39; Rom. 7:2-3).

With this information before us, I suggest that the following are violations of God’s law on marriage. (1) Pre-marital sex, which is called “fornication” in the scriptures, is a violation because marriage is the only acceptable place for sexual activity. (2) Extra-martial sex is a violation because it brings in a person other than the two that have the rightful duty and privilege to each other. (3) Post-maritial sex is condemned for the same reason stated above: God allows sexual activity only between a man and woman who are married to each other. (4) Homosexual activities are condemned; they are violations of God’s law on marriage which approves of a male and female being joined together so as to have sexual activity. All of these acts are engaged in by many in our land today, and some “religious teachers” have spoken out in favor of accepting people into the fellowship of the saints who so act.

III. Consequences of the violations: To violate these rules, any one or all of them, is to be guilty of sin which causes a soul to be lost (1 Cor. 6:9-11; Eph. 5:3-5; Heb. 13:4; Gal. 5:19-21). These passages clearly state that any of these violations is a transgression and will keep one from heaven, unless they are forgiven!

To have the forgiveness of sins, one must meet God’s requirements; His terms of salvation. If one is a child of God and violates any of these laws, he must: (1) repent of his sin; (2) he must confess that sin; (3) he must ask God .to forgive him (Acts 8:17-24; 1 Jn. 1:5-10). If one is not a child of God, to be forgiven of his sin, he must: (1) believe in Jesus Christ (Jn. 8:24); (2) repent of his sins (Acts 17:30-31); (3) confess his faith in Jesus Christ (Rom. 10:9-10; Acts 8:36-39); (4) be baptized in water for the remission of sins, to have them washed away by the blood of Christ, to become a member of the body of Christ (Acts 2:37-41; 22:16; 1 Cor. 12:13). Unless God’s terms of salvation are complied with, a man’s sins will remain with him till the judgment. And if they are not forgiven prior to that time, they’ll cause us misery for an eternity (Rev. 22:11; 20:12-15).

Beloved, it is clear that this subject is one of eternal importance. I pray that you and I will search the scriptures and our lives to see if we are clean in the eyes of God because we have met His terms of pardon. If we have not, then we need to be persuaded to commit ourselves to His will. Having done that, then we need to go to work helping others to gain the knowledge and then the faith necessary to comply with His will. Remember that His grace has brought us the revelation of His word and His power and goodness has preserved it for us. However, we must read, understand, and apply it in our lives if we are to profit from it.

Truth Magazine XXI: 43, pp. 682-684
November 3, 1977







Posted on

Reprint of The Vanburen Instructor, April 18, 2004

The Van Buren Instructor                                         
A Publication of the Van Buren church of Christ

Meeting at 711 Access Road in Van Buren, AR. 72956;

Service times Sun: 9:30 and 10:20 AM; 6:00 PM; Wed. 7:00 PM Study   

471-5801……             Visitors Welcome ….Members Expected!

Volume 6     Number 16    April 18, 2004                                 


Bitterness: A Bullet of Brutality!

 Acts 8:23: "For I see that you are poisoned by bitterness and bound by iniquity."
    Ephesians 4:31: "Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.
  Each of us is likely to be treated in a way that we perceive to be unfair along life's pilgrimage, perhaps a number of times. How we react to such action determines to a great extent the amount of happiness, pleasure and satisfaction we experience in this journey as well as how we nurture others.
  Bitterness can easily "spring up" in the heart of the person who en counters unfair and or harsh treatment.  Bitterness will affect us greatly and practically every other person who crosses our path.  The Bible points to bitterness as something to be weeded out of our lives  at the earliest stages and not allowed to develop, because the consequences are so great. Read carefully the inspired writer's words:
  Hebrews 12:15: "looking carefully lest anyone fall short of the grace of God; lest any root of bitterness springing up cause trouble, and by this many become defiled;"
  Its development is from the very small "root" to the destructive poisonous plant fully developed ‑‑ causing much trouble and defiling many.
  1. In many of our streets today, bullets are piercing the hearts and life support systems of many, much before their time.  We read of people having bullets enter houses and even taking their lives while they lie in bed or play in their yards, even while being held in the arms of their grandmother on their steps.  A great deal is being said and resources spent on trying to restrict the purchase of guns, which I have no objection to, but feel that it is foolish to think that such restrictions will make a dent in the crime committed by guns.  It's what is  being fed into the minds of children  and a failure to help them learn how  to deal successfully with unpleasant  experience, that's producing the bullets of brutality.
  2. Bitterness is not only a critical destructive mind set for the person who has it, but it is a bullet that pierces the lives of all  who touch that person.  His/her behavior affects many others.
How to avoid bitterness:
  1. See the destructive forces and consequences of it.  Look first of all in the Bible and read of its danger and consequences of a spiritual nature.

  2. Look around you and see others who have developed this in their minds and see how miserable they are and how they affect others.

  3. Determine to look at the positive aspects of adversity ‑‑ Job,  Peter, Paul and others.  Yes, one will suffer some at the hands of the wicked. At times well meaning people will say things and do things that cut us to the heart.  But remember that we are not the first to so suffer ‑‑ see Abel, Jeremiah, Christ and His apostles and early disciples. The righteous always wins the battle, however, in the long run. Read 2 Cor. 4:17; Rom.8:16‑18.
Ponder their message seriously.
  Remember what James says: "But if you have bitter envy and self‑seeking in your hearts, do not boast and lie against the truth. This wisdom does not descend from above,.." (Jas. 3:14‑15).  ‑‑William C. Sexton
    Those to Serve Today
Announcements: Les Davis
Song Leader: Sean Cavander
Prayer: Don Douglas
Lord’s Supper Talk: Ottie Talkington
Scripture Reading: Keith Hernandez
Lesson: Burl Young
Closing Prayer: Ellis Westbrooks
                 Lord’s Supper Table
Bread:  James Stein Fruit of the Vine: Jeff Bryant
Assisting:Derek Goodin and Ellis Westbrooks


    Welcome to all visitors with us today. We are so happy you came to worship the God of heaven. Please fill out a visitor’s card and place it in the collection plate. Please come back any anytime. If we can be of help, in studying the Bible, please let us know. We’ll gladly study any Bible subject with you, and try to do it at your convenience and place of your choosing.
Bible Reading for Today:
Sunday morning: See Burl Young   
Those who are sick, Prayer List:
  Brother Hugh Jeffery discovered last week he has COPD, and must take daily treatments. Keep him in you prayers, please

Jeff Bryant’s father, is still in  Saint Edwards, Room 5414, taking Therapy. I’m told the last two days had shown improvement. Let us keep him and the family in our prayers.
Barry Jones, It was so good to have brother Barry Jones home and able to attend services last Sunday. Let us keep him in our prayers, that the healing will be complete, and his life will be greatly improved.
     Geneva Sexton, had to miss her 6th chemo. treatment Friday due to a low blood count. She had been feeling very weak and could hardly stay awake. She said the first part of the week, she slept about 19 hours a day. Therefore, she still needs your prayers. Lois and I greatly appreciate your concern and prayer in her behalf.­
VERY GOOD NEWS:  we have a new sister in the Lord Jesus Christ. Haley Herandez was baptized last Sunday night. We know that angels in heaven rejoiced (Lk. 15:7, 10). We all rejoice with her, also! We know her mother and father are thrilled by her good action! 
Yours  truly says THANS for your prayers. The meeting in Saint Joseph MO, April 11-16 went well. Lois and I enjoyed being able to worship with people we had not seen for awhile, as well as meet some new people. We preached the truth, and it seemed to be received well. We had a safe trip home.                    
Our Meeting with Pat Farish, April 25-30
     Next Sunday is the starting date for the spring series of lesson . Let us make this a week of prayerful efforts to contact out neighbors, friends, relatives to attend. The following topics will be explored, examined in light of the Bible.
   Sunday morning, The Solution, Psalm 119:11
   Sunday evening, "What Doth Hinder?"
  Monday, "Words, Whereby Thou Shalt Be Sav­ed"
  Tuesday, Joseph, In The House Of Potiph­ar
  Wednesday, The Thief On The Cross ‑‑ And You
  Thursday, "Then Cometh The Devil"
   Friday, Why Do You Wait?

Those out-of-town:
     Randy Cavender plans to be preaching in Tahlequah, OK today, both services.  Remember him in your prayers, also.
      I’ll be preaching at Waveland this morning and at Bethel at 4:30, and try to be here at 6:00 PM. Lois plans to be with me.
            Talkingtons, Ottie and Sue, are to be out of town today, I’m told.
            Les and Stephanie Davis and the children are to be visiting out of town today I understand.
      There was a work day at the building yesterday. I understand that 5 men and two women showed and did some work. I trust that we all are grateful for their efforts.
      Wednesday night study:  Let us all remember the Wednesday study at 7:”30 PM. Classes for all. __________________________________
The Van Buren Church of Christ
711 Access Road
Van Buren, AR 72956
Posted on Leave a comment

Man has the capacity to Change…But he needs guidance and motivation!

As I read, observe, reflect and react‑‑to the stimuli I am faced with, I am more and more convinced that each “average” person has such capacity to improve his/her potential of achievements, only if they had the information and were motivated!

    Last night as I was in the home of a couple, studying the Bible with them and one of their friends whom they had invited, I was given the following short piece.  I thanked the person, telling him that I would read it when I got home. When I read it, I felt a deep sense of satisfaction.  It may help others, which was the evident aim of the writer, he had helped who was in his position. Yet, it may and should motivate others of us who have not experienced his pain, yet may have the opportunity to work with others, and possibly have a small but significant part in their life‑changing‑ experiences.

    Hi.  My name is Dave, and I am an Alcoholic.  I don’t know if this will help anyone with some problem that I have, but it can’t hurt.  The first thing, and probably the hardest was to admit I did have a problem.  I was a typical drunk, it was always someone else’s fault that I drank and never my own.  I was always looking for an excuse to drink. Either for relaxing or tension.  It didn’t matter as long as I could drink.  I would use up food and bill money to drink on and the sad part was, I knew I was taking away the things that my family needed and wanted.  I was HOOKED.  I guess when it hit me that there was something extremely wrong was when I wrecked my car.  I always thought that no matter how much I drank, I could always handle a car because cars are my life.

     I’m a Mechanic.  When it hit me, I thought, “If this truck hadn’t been here to stop me from driving this car, I may have ran over a kid on the street and not even know it.” I couldn’t handle that. There’s no way. I put my own wife and kinds thru  HELL. I sure wouldn’t want to do that to someone I don’t know.  My life is totally different. I don’t drink and I don’t miss it.  I go to church, and I became a member.  I have Bible study every Tuesday night with my preacher, Bill Sexton, which is a really good man and helps me a lot.  I guess the reason for this letter is to say one thing, and that is this, If you drink, STOP. It gets worse before it gets better.  Don’t learn the hard way like I did. I learned almost to late.

     Please STOP now.

    Perhaps I’d be wise and perceived to be more modest to leave my name out as the preacher, and I thought about doing that.  Then, I wandered if that wouldn’t be a false sense of  modesty, rather than being totally honest.  Therefore, I have left it as he gave it to me.

    I wish to make a point or two, however:

    1. Let us recognize and appreciate the fact that men and women have the capacity to change their lifes, if they have the right guidance and are properly motivated. Many have sank low, experienced great pain, but they may very well be in a position to appreciate truth and be willing to try it to see if it works.

    2. Therefore, we may be in  a position to help‑‑by showing concern, love, and being willing to spend some time to listen and offer our assistance, when they show willingness to respond.

    3. We may be tempted to evaluate one past change, and thus pass “by on the other side” ( Lk. 10:31‑32 ). We need to remember that God sent His Son for us who were all sinners, having been buried deep in some type sin and hurtful behavior. He stands at the door knocking ( Rev. 3:20 ) imploring us to allow Him entrance to our lives.  That is true of every individual, regardless of the dept of degradation into which he/she has sank.

    Beloved, let us be “salt of the earth” possessing and

dispensing the preserving quality‑‑as saints of God. Let us  be lights that we shine unto men and women, boys and girls who have walked the dark paths of sin and pain‑‑which leads to eternal destruction.  Let us see that they have the potential to be creatures with their hearts filled with gladness and going about contributing to the good things in this world, preparing for the next!

 —-William C. Sexton

. PS This was written a number of years ago, while I lived in Kansas City. It makes a point I still believe, however. So I reprint it here for consideration. Please ponder the point!