Study Materials

 

Musical Instruments and the Church?

A response to Rick Atchley and his Both/And church Sermons:

Is it the truth that drives me, or is it fear that I’ve been wrong for so long?
 
           
            Is it simply entertainment to listen and sing to and about God with instrumental music in the car and if so, what about during the worship service since there are many Christians who hold instrumental music talents? Some will say that since the Scriptures tell us that, “he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:” (Ephesians 4:13, 14), that a musician should be entitled to use his talents for the edifying of the body of Christ? However, could it possible that musical instruments are forbidden because man has forbidden them or is it because God has forbidden them? These and other questions will be addressed to see what the Bible has to say why the Church that Jesus built (Matthew 16:18) is divided about such a matter.
            Should we conclude to be an either . . . or church meaning that either we do it or we do not or can we conclude that we all should strive to be a both . . . and church. For example, We can have musical instruments and acapella at the same time. All right. How about, we can have both grape juice on the Lord’s table and tomato juice on the Lord’s table at the same time because both are considered fruit and both grow on vines. Thus, we must conclude that there must be some form of a pattern that we are to follow in all areas. For example, Baptize means to submerge or to plunge much like a submarine would submerge itself deeply into the water. However, are we to believe the millions who insist that the Bible commands to “sprinkle” or “to pour?” Upon examination of the Scriptures from the Scriptures, one can easily conclude that baptize means to cover completely with water. Thus, millions are mistaken. But, what about musical instruments?
            In Acts 15, the Jewish Christians showed that they should be a both . . . and church by not making a big deal about circumcising Gentiles, even though under the Old Law, this was a way to identify yourself which God had commanded. Now, this was brought up because the Jews did not believe that a Gentile could be saved unless circumcised. And while some were (Galatians 6), people today takes this reasoning of thought to state that it does not matter about musical instruments and that we should all learn to be a both . . . and church on the matter. Furthermore, it is suggested that we all be respectful, and don’t label or name call, not to indulge ourselves in character attacks because some choose musical instruments, but that we should all just have open minds and be willing to put away old thoughts while incorporating new ones. Thus, those who view instruments of music as acceptable ask others if they have turned a deaf ear to God’s Word? Could it be that what non-instrumental churches have done is replaced God’s Word with a tradition handed down through the generations?  Furthermore, are non-instrumental churches making it too difficult to worship just like the Jews made it too difficult for the Gentiles in that they were trying to force circumcision on them like non-instrumental congregations force no instruments on others?  Well, this is like comparing apples to oranges and therefore, let’s begin our study.
            God has given us all things and we do not need people in the church who are opinionated to the point that we can have everything, be an option. There has to be a general guide for we cannot be as those who, “In those days there was no king in Israel, but every man did that which was right in his own eyes” (1 Kings 17:6). We have a king and that is, Jesus Christ! Therefore, we are not under a law that states, “I’m O.K., your O.K., everyone’s O.K.” We are under the law of Christ which punches the sinner square in the nose and states that we are helpless sinners who are never good enough on our own. And therefore, we need to be at the mercy of Jesus the crucified Jew and embrace and follow His word to the letter, which is the Gospel or the New Law that God gave for us which is centered in his grace.
            Now, those who do not practice musical instruments have only made it harder on those who do use musical instruments in worship because God has never given us the right to alter what He deems right. In addition, musical instruments cannot be seen as a Kingdom advancer tools when God never gave us these tools to use. Therefore, those who do not practice musical instruments are not fearful of losing their acapella voices to instruments (even though some Christians are lazy and do not desire to be pleasing to God in song). They are not fearful that performances will break out and the leaders will abuse the practice. These Christians are not fearful that it may cause family strife or division as with putting another on a pedestal above another as mentioned in James 2:3 because, the Word of God must be put above the family despite our own feelings. In addition, those who do not worship with musical instruments are not fearful because members may leave to seek out such ventures because some, see it as no big deal even though it breaks the heart of God and them that stayed and prayed for unity. Furthermore, they are not fearful that they may lose influence with other congregations, even when, others claim that they are weak, and their future looks bleak and that there seems to be no leader to take them into a new dimension of worship. However, those who do not practice musical instruments are only fearful to change what God has commanded to leave alone (Revelation 21:18, 19)! Thus, these are individuals who refuse to be like those who will change the Gospel of Christ into another . . . which is not another, but merely a perversion of the original (Galatians 1:6-9). These are they who refuse to lose their identity to the world, whose master is Satan. They chose to display their identity in Christ, in his cross and in the Word of God. And while many are tired of spiritually fighting against people, those who choose the way of acapella are continuing to fight the good fight of faith (1 Timothy 6:12).
            Now, when you let people believe something is wrong that is not wrong, to the point it is dividing fellowship in the body, it has to be confronted. And this is what is happening with those who practice musical instruments. However, some say that practicing or observing the silence of the Scriptures is cowardice because they are not trying to keep the peace. But, is observing the silence of God’s Word the same as obeying God’s Word? It is true that those whom only read the Bible once honestly will not learn everything they need to know in the Scriptures.   For example, 2 Timothy 2:15 states to study to shew thyself approved. This means how can anyone ever show himself approved or accepted by God if he never studies the Word. And therefore, anyone who reads the Bible only once may never conclude that instrumental music is wrong or unacceptable to God.
            But, now the question becomes, “Did God ever command instruments in worship?” There are more than 15 instruments mentioned in the Old Testament and within these pages we clearly read that instruments were used. But for what purpose? In 2 Chronicles 7:6, it mentions that there were instruments of the Lord. But, it was David who made them. Therefore, the question must be asked, did he have authority to make them? Well, one can read in 1 Chronicles 28:12-19 that David was given complete and detailed descriptions of the temple by God. However, there were no musical instruments mentioned. Now, in 2 Chronicles 29:25-26, we can read that the priest used musical instruments and that in 2 Chronicles 5:13 these instruments were used in unison with one voice. Now, many claim that this is reason enough to show that musical instruments might be used in worship to God. 
            However, notice that in 2 Chronicles 5:11, the priest came out of the holy place. In fact, they came outside of the temple to blow their horns and to chant by way of self indulgence (Amos 6:5). Remember that this is outside of the worship area. Furthermore, this was a time of celebration, similar to a party in that they had just brought the ark into the temple which was just completed and this was a great accomplishment which took so long to complete. Now, some might try to say that 2 Chronicle 5:14 proves that God was pleased by the instruments because a cloud filled the house of God. But, remember that God was pleased that they finally completed the temple and that the ark was finally resting inside the temple because this was to be the house of God. Therefore, the cloud had nothing to do with the musical instruments that were used because the priests were not even in the temple using them, neither were they worshiping God with them. In addition to this, remember that David at that time was the king and he did what he wanted by his own pleasures. This is like listening to the radio today. Can we not listen to the radio? Surely we can, but that does not constitute it as worship to God. Interestingly enough, if God had commanded instruments, which he did not, but if he had, then we would be commanded to use the exact same instruments. But, I don’t see these instruments in any of the church’s today who worships with musical instruments and if they did use these kinds of instruments, there would probably be many who would leave that church.
            Now, some may say that Psalms 33:1-3 states to sing and play. In Psalms 92:1-3, it states to sing and play a song on the Sabbath, and Psalms 150:1-6 tells us to play in his sanctuary. Therefore, since we are commanded to read Psalms and sing, it would seem odd to read about such things as this that are forbidden to practice. Well, the first thing is this: in Psalms 150:1-6 it does not tell us to sing. In addition to this, when we look at Psalms 150:1, the words, “in his sanctuary” is referring to the earth just as the “firmament” is referring to the sky meaning that God can be worshiped anywhere. Otherwise, we cannot worship God today unless we are in the temple which we do not have because it was destroyed in 70 A.D. and was never rebuilt. Furthermore, James 2:10 states, that if one is under the Old Law of Moses, then every bit of it must be obeyed less we find ourselves guilty of not obeying any of it. This means that those who claim musical instruments (which God did not even authorize in the first place), must be obedient to animal sacrifice, Sabbath Days, the Passover, the Pentecost, incense burning and everything else from Genesis to Malachi to make all things the same. This also means that one could not have the grace of God mentioned in the New Law because one cannot be under both the Old and the New Law at the same time. In addition, Psalms 150 is a song and as shown earlier playing an instrument was never authorized by God, but after the tradition of a mere man, that is, what David had instituted. This would be like obeying every little detail the president of the United States said even when it goes against God’s Word, while still claiming that we are acceptable to God. This would be nonsense.
            Now, some say well, David was a man after God’s own heart. Why would God give him this title? Well, answer this: Noah did all that God commanded right? Was he doing all that God commanded him when he got drunk? What about this: was David still a man after God’s own heart when he was committing adultery with Bathsheba? Or, what about Abraham who was called the friend of God, yet he was a liar to Abimelech? Are we to say that God commands us to be a drunk, an adulterer and a liar? God Forbid! Notice Acts 17:30 which states, “And the times of this ignorance God winked at; but now commandeth all men every where to repent.” Regardless, this line of reasoning has nothing to do with worship to God.
            Now, let’s notice that in Psalms 81:1-5, a song showing the use of instrumental music in the New Moon and Solemn Feast Day. This was a statute of Israel and a law of God to Joseph. In addition to this, we read in Exodus 15:20-21 about singing with instruments to the Lord. Now, Colossians 2:14 would not apply to this because it only nailed the Old Law to the cross and not the Patriarch. But, is this true? Think about this: it is impossible to be under the Law of Christ anywhere in the Old Testament because of Hebrews 7:12 which states, “For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the Law.” Thus, the priesthood from the Law of Moses was changed because priests only came from the tribe of Levite which no one is from today. Also, the Patriarch Law is no longer in effect otherwise, God would be speaking to us directly and we would not need any book in the Bible. Furthermore, if we went by the Old Law, then we must conclude that Christ could not be our high priest because he was not from the tribe of Levi, but of Judah (Hebrews 7:14). Nor is Jesus Christ our physical father and under the patriarch, we would be unable to follow his directions. For under the Patriarch, the Law was given by the fathers of the families by God, and under the Law of Moses, the Law was given by the lawgiver, Moses. Likewise, under the new law, the law was given by Christ. Therefore, since Moses is dead, the Patriarch cannot be applied and in effect. Likewise since Christ is dead (physically speaking), the Law of Moses cannot be applied and in effect. This is why the only Law that is in effect is the Law of Christ which spoke nothing about musical instruments in worship just as the other dispensations spoke nothing about musical instruments in their worship.
            Now, some may mention about messianic prophecies in that instrumental music must be in the coming kingdom by which they use Psalms 45:6-8 in conjunction with Hebrews 1:8-9. However, nothing was carried over from one covenant to the new covenant even though some things are the same. Remember what the apostle Peter said in 2 Peter 1:3 that, since we are under the New Covenant, we have “all things.” This means that nothing is lacking such as musical instruments. Also in conjunction with Christ, some say that when Jesus was in the temple, he threw out the money changers, not the musicians because they did nothing wrong and this proves that Jesus does not have a problem with musical instruments. WHAT? This was Herod’s temple and in the temple, there were many courts, i.e., Jews, Gentiles, men, women courts. Now, only a priest could be in the holy or most holy place and since Christ was not yet our high priest, he could not have been there. Furthermore, no animals would have been near these places because they were to be by the altar, but one could not sell animals there either. Thus, the money changers were outside the temple. Now, the reason why Jesus did not throw the musicians out is because the real services of praise in the temple were done only with the voice. Furthermore, the instruments used then was much like a chime on a clock is used today or a pitch pipe is used to get the right note of the song. In addition to this, these things were done outside of the place of worship and formed no part of the temple music, but served more for a signal to begin.
            Next, there are verses such as Romans 15:8-9 in conjunction with Psalms 18:49 to claim that the Greek word “psallo” and the Hebrew word “zimar” means to play musical instruments, which is combined with Psalms 57:7-9. But, if God ever authorized instrumental music, you would hear from his own words approving it (which one cannot find), you would see one verse or even part of a verse commanding it (which one cannot find), or you would see some form or some sort of prophecy announcing its coming (which one cannot find). Furthermore, Ephesians 5:18-19 and Colossians 3:16 states to sing and is speaking to the congregation as a whole since the books were written for the church. But that does not mean that we cannot sing by ourselves while driving down the wrong or sitting at home because that is covered by James 5:13. However, James when compared to Ephesians and Colossians are not written to the same audience. One to the assembly, the other to the individual. In addition to this, choirs are not authorized in scriptures which is mentioned briefly about in 1 Corinthians 14:26. We are to obey from the heart the form of doctrine already delivered (Romans 6:17) and one cannot play and sing from the heart at the same time.
            Now, some say that the original meaning of the word “psallo” meant to play which most scholars will agree with. So, if the Holy Spirit was to forbid instrumental music why did he use a word so commonly associated with it? Well, the question must be asked: does sing mean to sing only? Notice the context of the word in Ephesians 5:19 which mentions about “speaking to yourselves . . . singing.” Notice also Colossians 3:16 which states “Let the word of Christ dwell in you . . . teaching and admonishing . . . in songs, singing . . . in your hearts.” Notice the two compared together: “singing and making melody in your heart”. . . “singing with grace in your hearts.” Now, how can anyone say that this means: “singing and playing musical instruments in your heart” when the context of the verse has to do exclusively with singing? Don’t you know, “Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things” (Romans 1:21-23). Therefore, if anyone says that non instrumental music is only a tradition, we can see by evidence in the Scriptures that the tradition (command) came from God and not from man.
            Now some might say, what about our gifts because we should not waste our gifts that God gives us. It mentions in Psalms 150:1-3 about playing instruments that David made (1 Chronicles 23:5) which were used for praising the Lord (2 Chronicles 30:21). Thus, the question is asked, why make it difficult for members who just want to use their gifts to serve God?    It is not the church that makes this difficult or God who makes this difficult to understand. It is man, who chooses his own desires, that makes this difficult because he is told, “No” by the Bible and the church who practices the Bible. Furthermore, when we look at the acts of worship, everyone can study the bible, we can all sing, and pray, and give, and partake of the Lord’s Supper. However, can everyone play an instrument? Absolutely not! Now, while this may sound unkind to every believing musician in the world, there is still no authority for playing an instrument in worship. Besides this, there are many members who have talents that have no place in the worship service such as bike riding, shooting guns, etc. . . So, musicians should not feel as if they are the only ones excluded. However, those who desire such musical instruments in worship, desire to make the instruments an act of worship. But the fact is, the Bible says to sing in the worship and that is all it says to do!
            Now, some will say that just because it does not say to play does not mean that we have to leave it out. One may say, that anything we like can be used as an aid. However, when it comes to the silence of the Scriptures and the many divisions that have been caused by it, is it by God’s will that this has happened or by man’s stubbornness in an attempt to place something in the Scriptures that God has not placed in there? Remember what Revelation 22:18-19 states . . . Do Not Add Or Take Away. Essentially, God was saying, just follow it as it is written and leave my word alone! Sadly, man has not done this which is the cause of many divisions in the church today. Thus, it is ironic that some say that God does not segregate life. This is so untrue. Tell me, does he separate the Christian from the world by the blood of Christ in baptism? Tell me, who was the Law of Moses exclusively for? The Jews. Today, who is the New Law for? Everyone. Now that we can establish this, can you take those things from the Old Law and force them into the New? No, because God had them completely vanish when His Son’s body was nailed to that cross and if we attempt to thrust the Old Law or even parts of the Old Law into the New Law, and we follow bits and pieces of both, then the cross and the death of Christ are become of no effect (1 Corinthians 1:17).
            Now in addition to this, some say that we cannot worry so much about the silence of the Scriptures. This is true. All we need to do, to see if we are doing what God would have us to do, is read the Bible and apply the things that he tells us to do. Therefore, when we look at musical instruments in worship I must ask the question, “Did God tell me to?” Nope. Then, I do not need to worry about doing it since it is not in there. It is that simple. Yet, man always attempts to justify that which is not written by adding things in to suit their own fancies.
            Now, another question that has presented itself during this study is, “Is it wrong to meet on Saturday instead of Sunday for worship because Acts 2:46 says that the Christians met every day? This line of question is joined together by Romans 14:5, by which people say that this shows that each member should be convinced in their own mind, without judging another with different convictions as to what day one can worship. Is this true? Let’s look at the context. Those who were just recently converted to Christianity from the Old Law had been taught for several generations that you rested on the Sabbath Day or visited the temple on a certain day. This was something that would take some time to forget about. As the expression is, “Old habits die hard.” Thus, they had to be re-taught just as they had to be re-taught in Romans 13:8-9 to love one another including loving thy neighbor as thyself and who was their neighbor? The Gentiles, whom they did not like. So, Paul was telling everyone in Romans 14:5 to keep your scruple to yourself and not to bind on others what God has not bound on others. This is seen in 1 Corinthians 8 and the knowledge about opinions, that the apostle Peter had, by which the apostle Paul had to correct him about his scruple. Therefore, Paul was saying, “Let us not therefore judge one another anymore: but judge this rather, that no man put a stumblingblock or an occasion to fall in his brother's way” (Romans 14:13). Thus, let us not judge according to our own scruples anymore because it may become a stumbling block to those recently converted to Christ.
            Now another line of question is, “Is it O.K. to take communion Saturday instead of Sunday?” It is claimed that the early Christians had the Lord’s Supper every day (Acts 2:42, 46) and that other congregations met at different times during the week. Now, does this mean that one can partake of the Lords Supper any time that he or she desires? In addition, some will use the argument that Acts 20:7-12 indicates that the Lord’s Supper was taken on Monday and that the Lord himself instituted it on Wednesday or Thursday. Now, put this in conjunction with 1 Corinthians 11:25 and the phrase “as often as” which can also mean “whenever” from the Greek word, “hosakis” and compare that with Revelation 11:6 and you come to the conclusion that the Lord’s Supper can be taken at anytime and we should be focusing more on the event and not the time of the event. Now, while that is all a huge mouthful, is this correct? First of all, if we notice the Jewish calendar in the first century, we will notice that the evening and the morning were the first day which is evident in Genesis chapter 1. However, today our calendars are from morning to evening. So, first, lets keep all things the same. Second, Acts 20:7 clearly shows the first day of the week indicating that we do not take communion as often as we desire (as often as 1 Corinthians 11:23-26), but we do take it as often as shown (Acts 20:7) which is upon the first day of the week. Third, the contexts of 1 Corinthians 11:23-26 and Revelation 11:6 are not the same and therefore, the words cannot be used the same. For example: one may like a symphony, but are they referring to the candy bar or the concert? Thus, the words have to be kept and observed in light of their context. Now, why did Jesus institute the Lord’s Supper on Wednesday or Thursday? It was because Christ was not going to be with them on Saturday which was the Passover because Christ, by that time, would be dead. Now, the Passover was under the Old Law and Christ was preparing for the New Law. In addition to this, Thursday night we need to remember that, the Lord was betrayed by Judas and on Friday he was hung on the cross by which that evening, he was taken down because no one could be hung on the Passover. Then of course on Sunday, he was resurrected. So, the Lord’s Supper had to be instituted at that time. Now, Jesus said that, “But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father's kingdom” (Matthew 26:29). Therefore, the question must be asked? When did they eat again? Notice in Acts 2 on the day of Pentecost (which was also a Sunday), we see people becoming Christians on that Sunday as well as partaking in the Lords Supper which is mentioned in Acts 2:42 which strengthens Acts 20:7. Therefore, we are to take the Lord’s Supper on the first day of the week and each first day of the week which is “as often as” meaning, “whenever” (Greek: hosakis) we are shown by example to partake in this act of worship.
            Sadly, many struggle so much with placing faith in a plan or pattern for doing things, that they can become discouraged and fill themselves with anxiety, fear and anger while in an attempt to divide themselves from others out of their own frustrations. But, this is due largely impart that, many will only read the surface of the Bible, instead of studying to shew thyself approved unto God (2 Timothy 2:15). In addition, some are so concerned or frustrated that they may say that if I don’t get every detail right, not just the ones mentioned, but also if I don’t get the silence of the Scriptures right, then my soul will burn in Hell . . . forever and they begin to panic and confuse themselves. But I tell you this, why not just be obedient to God and let him take care of the rest just as God has told us all to do? However, many are not convinced of this and they say “you know, Christianity is such a burden and has become such a joyless Gospel that it has left split churches, the decline of memberships (like they treat as a club) and the loss of our children everywhere in its wake.” Yet, these individuals again fail to see that we may not always get along, but we are to carry our cross daily (Luke 9:23) as well as bear the burdens of others (Galatians 6:2) which is why the Christian’s reward is so great!
            Now, it is true that only 9-22% of America attends regularly to some kind of religion. But this does not mean that we must compromise the truth to bring them in. When Paul in 1 Corinthians 9:19-23 was talking about crossing the dividing lines to help others to Christ, he did not compromise the Truth to do so! It simply means to us that we have a lot of work to do and that what we have done in the past is simply . . . not enough! Thus, we must engage our society without being seduced by it! We need to be thinking, missions.
            So, back to the original question, “Does sing mean to sing only?” Yes, because we would be speaking only where God has spoken. We can see by examples that singing in the first century church was done without the accompany of musical instruments. Was it because: they had to meet in secret at times? No. Was it because there was a problem with paganism at times? No. The fact is that if the Holy Spirit wanted us to play musical instruments in worship, he would have told us clearly just as he has spoken clearly on every other subject. Thus, the authority to accept musical instruments is apart and separated from the clear commands of God. But, what about musical instruments in heaven as mentioned in Revelation 5:8 and Revelation 15:2-3 which mentions the harps given by God . . . what does that mean? It means that we will be celebrating with joy in Heaven. Now, to say that God is going to destroy all things including all the elements which makes up all things (Luke 21:33; 2 Peter 3:10), but to keep the elements that make a brass harp with steel strings and fleshly hands that make them be plucked makes the Holy Spirit out to be a liar when he told Peter that all would be gone as well as calling Jesus Christ a liar when he claimed that all things would pass away. Remember that the book of revelation is signified (Revelation 1:1). Thus, God is not up in Heaven right now holding a harp and strumming to his own beat.
            However, people in the church are desperately pleading that musical instruments are needed to reach the lost and to keep our children. However, when speaking about growth by reaching the lost and keeping our children, the church in the first century grew like a wildfire, converting all over the place and they did this without musical instruments. Therefore, it begs the question: “Why do some say that we need it now to save our children and to convert others to Christ and “bring them in” per se when the church has never needed them before?” It is because we have forgotten to evangelize the world and to teach our children the Bible! However, some will disguise these facts and say that some people have compromised by making services only an hour, by dressing less formal, by making different translations and by using technology in services and that has not watered down the message of God, therefore, neither should musical instruments.  However, look at it this way: we can have services all day long and those who conform it to 1 hour has little patience to worship God. Second, those who dress informally continue to be disrespectful to our high priest and to God, the Father. Third, different translations have turned people aside from the truth. So, when people have little patience for God, disrespect for God, and accept translations that God would not accept has this watered down Christianity? Absolutely and to confuse them as well! 
            However, some do not stop here because, some will cry out that, “Fellowship is declining in the churches and we must do something drastic to make it better!” But, whose fault is it that it declined? Ours. You see, it makes no difference what denominations or cults are doing as far a growth because when we forsake what God has commanded, we too will grow beyond our wildest dreams. However, when the truth is present, people just don’t like to be told, “it’s my way or your out,” which is exactly what God has told us. It is not about our opinions, it is his way and his way alone and if we ever hope to keep our children and those that we talk to about the Bible, it has to be the way of God because every time we compromise, Satan is there to draw people unto himself and we lose them. And if we lose our next generation, it is because we have failed to teach them the Truth!
            Therefore, remember that the Gospel teaches us that there are those who call themselves faithful Christians who worship God in vain with doctrines of men (Matthew. 15:9), who offer strange things before the Lord (Leviticus 10:1, 2), who transforms the Gospel unto a different gospel (Galatians 1:6-9), who teaches lies with the father of lies (John 8:44), who transform themselves into angels of light and deceitful workers (2 Corinthians 11:3-4) to accomplish everything in the craftiness of Satan by a false gospel which has added and taken away from the word of God and replaced it with the scruples of men founded on the wickedness of Satan. Thus sadly, “the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men:” (Isaiah 29:13). Thus, we cannot stand over the word of God, we must stand under it! And I pray that all Christians continue to fight the good fight of faith (1 Timothy 6:12) and press toward the mark for the prize (Philippians 3:14) which is our Heavenly Homes! Thus, remember that “Iron sharpeneth iron; so a man sharpeneth the countenance of his friend.” (Proverbs 27:17). God bless.
 
Robert Notgrass
(January, 2007)
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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