The Reporter   
 Volume 52 # 47  --  November 25, 2012

Archives - Past Issues

The One True God Of Christianity

    God exists. He is worthy of universal and eternal praise. In dealing with Moses God said, "I Am who I Am. And He said, Thus you shall say to the children of Israel, I Am has sent me to you." (Exodus 3:14) The existence of the one true God is evident from His works. "The heavens declare the glory of God; And the firmament shows His handiwork. Day unto day utters speech, And night unto night reveals knowledge. There is no speech nor language Where their voice is not heard. Their line has gone out through all the earth, And their words to the end of the world. In them He has set a tabernacle for the sun." (Psalm 19:1-4) God is infinite in relation to time. You can get neither backward nor forward to a point beyond God. Past, present and future are as the present with Him. Paul shows us that the one true God of Christianity is identified from three aspects. "Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also aboundeth by Christ." (2 Corinthians 1:3-5) Every day Jehovah God should be honored as the one true God of Christianity, our heavenly Father.

    The one true God of Christianity is the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. "Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ..." (2 Corinthians 1:3) Jesus is the Redeemer of the world and God is the Father of our Redeemer. God's love is displayed in the amazing story of redemption. He did not spare His own Son from bearing the full wrath required for the sins of the world. "He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things?" (Romans 8:32) Jesus is our Redeemer. He came to this world and gave His blood for us. Through obedient faith in Him we can be saved. He was the Word that became flesh. "And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth." (John 1:14) Jesus, being born of a virgin, became human and lived among us. God was with us in human flesh. "Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us." (Matthew 1:23) Paul told the Colossian brethren, "We always thank God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, when we pray for you." (Colossians 1:3 ESV) The heart of Paul was deeply moved to thank God as the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

    The one true God of Christianity is the Father of mercies. "Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies..." (2 Corinthians 1:3) Paul was thankful to God because He is the merciful Father. God is compassionate and He comforts the afflicted. God is the source of all mercy. "But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth." (Psalm 86:15) God's mercy is needed because we have sinned. "O God, according to thy loving kindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions." (Psalms 51:1) We were dead and lost in sin; but now, by God's mercy, we are alive and found. God our Father is rich in mercy. "Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and he will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon." (Isaiah 55:7) It is God's mercy, God's goodness that leads men to repentance. "Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?" (Romans 2:4) Let us be merciful, showing that we are the children of the Father of mercies.

    The one true God of Christianity is the Father of comfort. "Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God." (2 Corinthians 1:3-4) Life brings troubles to the best of mankind. Whatever troubles we face, God is able to provide comfort. God comforts us so that we may be able to comfort others in their troubles. As the God of all comfort, there is no limitation to the comfort He provides. "Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus." (Romans 15:5) Let us remember that that God is the God of every possible comfort. As we sing let us remember God's comfort for His children. "Not a burden we bear, Not a sorrow we share, But our toil He doth richly repay; Not a grief nor a loss, Not a frown nor a cross But is blessed if we trust and obey." "It is a very wonderful thing that we have a God who can comfort us in all our troubles. It is one thing to have comfort when the sun is shining and with someone patting us on the back. But what we really need is comfort in the time of trouble." If you become a Christian that does not mean that you will not face adversity. However, as we face troubles God gives us much encouragement and comfort through the Scriptures. When struggles come fill your heart with God's word, walk with Him and He will provide the guidance and security that you need. God does not comfort us to make us comfortable, but to make us comforters. We must comfort others through Christ. "Now we exhort you, brethren, warn them that are unruly, comfort the feebleminded, support the weak, be patient toward all men." (1 Thessalonians 5:14) The prophet Isaiah wrote, "Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God. Speak ye comfortably to Jerusalem, and cry unto her, that her warfare is accomplished, that her iniquity is pardoned: for she hath received of the LORD'S hand double for all her sins." (Isaiah 40:1-2) Only one can comfort us with a comfort that will comfort our troubled mind and soul; the Lord God of heaven and earth, who comforts us through Christ Jesus. As Paul closed his writings to the Corinthians he said, "Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you." (2 Corinthians 13:11)

    God has the heart of a father. God's mercy shines when He is seen as a Father with His children whom He pities. God has the house of a father. Christians have an abiding place or a mansion in the "Father's House." God has the love of a father. The love of God for sinners caused the greatest gift ever given; God's Son was sacrificed to save us from our sins. Thank God that salvation can be ours! To become a Christian you must hear the gospel (Romans 10:17), believe in Jesus as the Christ (Mark 16:16), repent of all sins (Acts 17:30), confess Christ as Lord (Acts 8:36) and be baptized for remission of sins. (Acts 2:38) After baptism, remain faithful to God. (Revelation 2:10) God is your Father if you are His child through humble obedience to the gospel. He wants His people comforted eternally when their life of faithful service has been completed.     

 - - - - Charles Box

News & Notes

1. Prayer List: Children Hospital Birmingham Rehab Area: Ethan Flowers Diamond. In Need of Prayer: Lorene Beverly, LeRoy Boutwell, Willie Frank Burnett, Brenda Burkett, Camren Coleman, Anna Bell Conway, Bonnie Croley, Debbie Cunningham, Marietta Faulkenberry, Michelle Flowers, Gail Gipson, Devin Hawkins, Doris Hayes, Patrick Hicks, Patricia Kennemore, Peggy Lassiter, Alice Little, Arthur Little, Annie McKee, Jewel McNaughton, Betty McQueen, Charlotte Miller, Jeff Miller, Jane Owen, Candice Parker, Elizabeth Perdue,  William Pierce, Tina Pouncey, Dan Raybon, Lydia Ann Raybon, Candie Reaves, Peggy Rice, Rosie Rudolph, Nathan Simmons, Margaret Skipper, Sarah Stidham, Bobby & Mary Lou Terrell, Arlene Thomas, John Tindoll, Jenny Trawick, Bobbie Walker, Leroy Waller, Gladys Warren, Jim Watts, Florida Wilson, Carlton Whittle, and Cody Yelverton. Crowne Health Care: Helen Autrey, Dorothy Buck, Jewel Cauthen, Gladys Childs, Arlene Coletrane, Betty Findley, Kathy Johnson, Sarah Knight, Nelda Sanders, Annie Ruth Tetter, and Alice Thompson. Georgiana Nursing Home: Earl Lowery.

 2. Building in Annai: Please pray that everything can come together for the completion of the building in Annai, Guyana, South America. These brethren need this place for worship. Thanks to everyone who is helping to make this a reality.

 3. Poinsettia For Building: If you would like to help with the purchase of Poinsettias to decorate the building please give your money to Lori Gail Bagents or Eleanor Stabler.

 4. Christmas Service Project: There will be a special Christmas breakfast for all of our young people, age infant through high school, on Saturday, December 8th at 9:00 am here at the building. Parents, please see Kelli Smith or Ashley Holladay to get the information concerning gifts to buy for the children to bring for the foster children. This will be a great way to serve those in our community and we hope we can all participate.

5. Crowne Health Care: There will not be a class at Crowne Health Care December 29th. A special "Thank You," to those who continue to help with this good work.

 6. Basics Training: Mitch Bozeman is in basic training at Fort Sill, Oklahoma. Please keep him in your prayers.

 7. Anniversary: Celebrating an anniversary this week: November 28thGeorge and Evelyn Lewis.

 8. Birthdays: Celebrating birthdays this week: November 25th Joe Arnold and Horace Martin, November 26th Mary Arnold, November 28th Ann Jackson and Rebekah Stallings, and November 29th Josh Till.

 9. Jerry Barr Mission Fund: Please contribute to the "Jerry Barr Mission Fund." This fund was set up by Joan and other members of Jerry's family. This money will be used to help with mission trips, build building and support other mission needs. Make checks to Walnut Street Church of Christ -- "Jerry Barr Mission Fund." Jerry's love for mission work lives on.

 10. Carl Sessions Camp Fund: Please contribute to the "Carl Sessions Camp Fund." This makes it possible for all Walnut Street Children to attend Bible Camp. Make checks to Walnut Street Church of Christ and mark them "Carl Sessions Camp Fund." A very special "Thank You" is given to everyone who has given to this great work. Lives are being changed!

 11. Sign-Up Sheets 2013: The sign-up sheets for 2013 are on the bulletin board. Please volunteer to help during 2013. Many of you do so many good things. Thank You!

 12.  Pray For Our Elders: Elders in the church have great responsibility. Pray for Mike Bagents and Bobby Terrell daily.

 13. Be a Daily Bible Reader: It takes about seventy-two hours to read the Bible completely through at an average reading speed. Fill your heart with the word of God daily.

Outward Appearances

   "Oh, how horrible our sins look when they are committed by someone else!" -- Chuck Smith. It's so hard to keep our eyes on ourselves rather than to compare ourselves with others, isn't it? We CAN be too hard on ourselves as we live in a world where it's normal to compare ourself with everyone else. On the flip side, our perception of others can also be distorted by our culture of comparison.

    We struggle to look at ourselves and others through God's viewpoint, so we often undervalue ourselves, and judge others too harshly. The Book of James hits on this idea in chapter 2 where we find stern warnings about judging by appearances, and are encouraged to love our neighbors as we love ourselves.

    James wrote: For if a man wearing a gold ring and fine clothing comes into your assembly, and a poor man in shabby clothing also comes in, and if you pay attention to the one who wears the fine clothing and say, "You sit here in a good place," while you say to the poor man, "You stand over there," or, "Sit down at my feet," have you not then made distinctions among yourselves and become judges with evil thoughts? (Jas 2:2-4) When we forget that all people: rich, poor, black, white, male, and female were made in the image of God, we might "judge" in this same way. But the truth is, God would have us love each other and see each other as equals. We should pray for God to instill in us HIS love for others—in addition to asking Him to help us see ourselves the way He sees us, too.

    When we commit the sin of favoritism (Jas 2:9), we are robbing ourselves and others of the joy that we experience every day when God and others love us in spite of our flaws. Every person would like to change something about himself or herself, yet there is someone who still loves each of us. Give that gift to yourself and those around you.

 - - - - Darrell Powell

Isn't it funny how someone can say 'I believe in God' but still follow Satan (who, by the way, also 'believes' in God).

Don't just own a Bible; read it!

Walnut Street Church of Christ

P.O. Box 551

Greenville, Alabama 36037-0551


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