A Necessary Realization
C. D. Plum
Paden City, West Virginia
Perhaps I should of this article in the have given the subject plural, for really, such it is. Necessary realizations is actually what is taught here.
Often we hear people say, "What is the matter with the world? " And others who realize how bad things are, say, "What can be done about it?" Well, I don't know everything that is the matter with the world. And I do not pretend to know everything that we should try to do about it. I do, however, know that things are bad, and I am pretty sure that a very strong panacea of some sort is needed by the world. And I happen to know what that panacea is that is needed. The world needs to be brought to certain realizations, which, at this time it seems she knows little about.
I have heard it said that what this world needs is a good dose of religion. But such a statement as this' without clarification, is so vague that it is worthless. Those who understand the teaching of the Bible know full well that the world already has too much of the religion of Catholicism and Protestantism. Such religions as these have no sanction from the God of Heaven, and spiritually will not help the world.
But a man said once, "I mean the world needs a good shot of the religion we read about in the Bible." But this statement is as vague as can be. It needs clarification. In the Bible we read about the "Jews religion." ((Gal. 1:13-14.) Certainly the world does not need a shot of this religion. It was all right in its time and day before Christ died on the cross. But it was "nailed to the cross" and was taken out of the way when Christ died. (Col. 2:14-16.) And Paul, who held to the Jews religion after the cross of Christ, and who was "Profiting in it," was at the same time "persecuting the church of God, and wasting it." (Gal. 1: 13-14.) So the world does not need this.
And then in the Bible we read about "vain religion and vain worship." The world surely does not need this. In fact it has too much of this all ready. From the Bible viewpoint, religion may be vain because of talking too much (bridleth not his tongue," Jas. 1:26), and doing too much (following the doctrines and commandments of men), Mt. 16:9-13. Hence, the statement that the world needs religion is too vague without clarification. Note, carefully, then, what follows.
1. Right here let me state the first realization. The world needs to realize that, only the "pure and undefiled" system of religion as taught by Jesus the Christ, and revealed in the New Testament, will profit spiritually. (Jas. 1:27.) God's "Hear ye him," concerning his Son, sets aside every system of religion in the world that is contrary to Christ's teaching. This the world must realize. This the world must accept. There will be no spiritual deliverance otherwise.
2. The world needs to realize that God is, and he that cometh to God "must believe that he is." (Heb. 11:6.) And further, the world needs to realize that, "Those who do not wish to retain God in their knowledge he will give over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient." (Ro. 1:28.) And further. in this connection, the world needs to know that if it will not hearken unto the words of God's Son that God, himself will hold it to strict account. (Deut. 18:18-i9.)3. Not only is it necessary to realize that God is. it is likewise necessary to realize that 7 God has" his own way of doing things. And God's 'thoughts and ways" are as far above man's thoughts and ways as the heaven is above the earth. (Isa. 55:8-9.)
4. And the world not only needs to realize that "God is" and "God has," but this world needs to know that "God will not change." The prophet spoke God's words, and said, "I am the Lord, I change not.'' (Mal. 3:6.) So it is, "The wicked must forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts. (Isa. 65:7.)
5. Another necessary realization on the part of the world is that, Jesus established "one" church, and that denominationalism makes infidels. "I will build my church," says Jesus. "The true tabernacle which the Lord built, and not man," says Paul, and "There is one body." (Mt. 16:18; Heb. 8:2; Eph. 4:4.) Denominationalism represents religious division, provokes religious confusion, and helps to defeat the prayer of Jesus when he prayed that "all may be one, and that the world may believe that thou hast sent me."
6. The world needs to realize that the way of entrance into the Lord's church today is the same as they entered over nineteen hundred years ago. The book of Acts is the book of conversions. This book carefully studied, with other scriptures relating to the same thought, reveals that believers (Mk. 16:16) repented of their sins (Acts 2:38) and were baptized (buried) for the remission of their sins upon the simple confession of their faith in believing that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. (Acts 8:37-38; Col. 2:12.) It is just as simple as that today. Simple obedience to the Son of God. That is all that is required. "He is the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him." Obedience to the Lord is neither mythical nor mystical. And the sooner the service of God is severed from the idea of the mythical or mystical, the better for this old world.
7. It would be unwise to close this article without insisting that not only the world, but the church as well, needs to realize that God requires that his servants be "faithful unto death." The fight is not for a day, but a fight to the finish, if the crown we would wear. If gospel preachers did not have to spend so much time in holding the members, and were free to work on the alien lost, the church would make more progress in numbers, and in work accomplished.
Truth Magazine VI, 12 pp. 19-20