Born To Bear Witness

Written by Hoyt W. Allen, Jr.

Continued from page 1

John had a tremendous amount of people that followed after him. He was very careful to inform them that he was notrepparttar Christ, but onlyrepparttar 141345 one to point to Him.

Quite often a preacher has problems with having "Preacher Lovers" in a congregation. That is, people want to follow him, rather than Christ. If he is not teaching or preaching because he has to be out of town, they don't even attend services. One preacher never tells his congregation that he is going to be gone, because he knows that "whenrepparttar 141346 cat is away,repparttar 141347 mice will play." One has a poor religion if it is "built upon a preacher" instead of Christ. If a preacher "falls," so does their hope of Heaven. John made it very clear that he came to witness of Christ. Any preacher worth anything today, will do likewise.

In John 3:25-30, an argument broke out among some of John's disciples over ceremonial washings. They came to John to settlerepparttar 141348 dispute. He was quick to tell them that Jesus must be givenrepparttar 141349 pre-eminence in all things. John said that he (John) must become less and less inrepparttar 141350 eyes of man and Jesus must become more and more. The disciples of John were having problems with Jesus gaining popularity, and John had to resolve this problem. John showed how "big" he was by his willingness to take second place. This is a "monument" to his character. It is one that all of us Christians would do well in duplicating. When Christians are willing to work inrepparttar 141351 Lord's Church and not care who getsrepparttar 141352 credit, a great deal can be accomplished. However, if a person fears doing anything, due to not getting a "pat onrepparttar 141353 back," thenrepparttar 141354 Lord's work is drastically limited. If John taught us anything, it was a life of servanthood.

The Mission

In John 1:6repparttar 141355 word "sent" is from a Greek word (Apostello) from which we getrepparttar 141356 English word "Apostle." This word normally means "one sent with a message."

No one has ever had a greater sender (God), nor has had a greater message than to point people to Jesus Christ, as John did. John's purpose of coming was to testify of Jesus. Day by day people enter court rooms to testify on behalf of others (witness to accidents, business frauds, martial disputes, etc.). However, no one can give a greater testimony than to inform people how Jesus saved them from their sins, when they accepted Him as Lord and Savior, by allowing their faith to cause them to repent of their sins, confess Him publicly, and permit someone to immerse them inrepparttar 141357 watery grave of Christian baptism.

Now - some people may THINK they are saved, but were really not, according to God's Word. Some would say they were saved when: they heard a voice; they prayedrepparttar 141358 "sinner's prayer" (not found inrepparttar 141359 Bible); laid their hand onrepparttar 141360 radio or TV; recited a confession or creed; got goose bumps when hearing a Gospel song; signed a commitment card at a religious service; or "prayed through" at an alter.

In John 1:8, John made it very plain that he was notrepparttar 141361 Light, but came to be a witness ofrepparttar 141362 Light. All Christians today need to do likewise. That is, make it plain: who Jesus is (God inrepparttar 141363 flesh); whatrepparttar 141364 church is (God's redeemed family); there will be a Judgement Day; there is a hell, as well as a heaven; andrepparttar 141365 Lord's Plan of Salvation.

Just as John realized that he was born to witness about Jesus, today God needs men, women and youth to do likewise. Too many church members go torepparttar 141366 gridirons, ball diamonds and gymnasiums and shout, scream and yell for some athletic contest and then become closed-lipped and yellow-bellied when it comes to "speaking up" for Jesus. Shame on us if we are guilty of such. If we are a "Born Again" child of God, we have been born to witness! Let's do it, every day that God allows us to live.

All Scriptures quoted are fromrepparttar 141367 New King James Version unless otherwise noted.

Brother Hoyt W. Allen Jr. is a Restoration author, preacher and director of the KYOWVA Evangelistic Association in Ironton, Ohio. You may visit his website at

Brother Allen's article is courtesy of the The Home Bible Study Institute -

Permission to use is granted if attributed to author, his website and the website of The Home Bible Study Institute.

Where Are The Dead?

Written by Stephen Kingery

Continued from page 1

What happens torepparttar souls ofrepparttar 141344 dead today? Those who have been saved and remain faithful will go to be withrepparttar 141345 Lord. Paul plainly states this: "For to me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain. But if I live on inrepparttar 141346 flesh, this will mean fruit from my labor, yet what I shall choose I cannot tell. For I am hard pressed betweenrepparttar 141347 two, having a desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better." (Philippians 1:21-23) "We are confident, yes, well pleased rather to be absent fromrepparttar 141348 body and to be present withrepparttar 141349 Lord." (II Corinthians 5:8) These verses clearly show that Paul fully expected to go directly to be withrepparttar 141350 Lord upon his death. For Paul to say that it would be his gain to be dead, and to say that to be absent fromrepparttar 141351 body and to be present withrepparttar 141352 Lord indicates this. Paul would surely not have made these statements if he was going to spend a long period of time in some intermediate state away from Christ.

Paul also states thatrepparttar 141353 saints will come back with Christ: "so that He may establish your hearts blameless in holiness before our God and Father atrepparttar 141354 coming of our Lord Jesus Christ with all His saints." (I Thessalonians 3:13) Saints inrepparttar 141355 New Testament always refers to Christians. In order forrepparttar 141356 saints to come back with Christ, then they must go to be with Him before that day. There are those who would have us believe thatrepparttar 141357 term saints used in this verse means angels. It is true thatrepparttar 141358 angels will come with Christ at His second coming. However, in as much as all other occasions ofrepparttar 141359 New Testament writers usingrepparttar 141360 word saints to refer to Christians, it is hard to believe that Paul would deviate just this one time and userepparttar 141361 word to mean angels.

The fact that our souls will go to be withrepparttar 141362 Lord upon our physical death is also supported by this passage: "For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who sleep in Jesus." (I Thessalonians 4:14) The word "sleep" here refers torepparttar 141363 dead, not a form of soul sleep. This is supported byrepparttar 141364 story ofrepparttar 141365 rich man and Lazarus, for it is evident that both were conscience while yet dead. And also, when Jesus rose Lazarus (brother of Mary and Martha) we believe that Lazarus was conscience when Jesus spoke to him to rise fromrepparttar 141366 dead.

Whenrepparttar 141367 saints return with Christ as indicated inrepparttar 141368 passages noted above, they shall be united with their resurrected body. And those that shall remain on earth atrepparttar 141369 time of His coming will be changed as well. They too, will receive a new body: "Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed -- in a moment, inrepparttar 141370 twinkling of an eye atrepparttar 141371 last trumpet. Forrepparttar 141372 trumpet will sound, andrepparttar 141373 dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed." (I Corinthians 15:51,52)

Not only willrepparttar 141374 saints be resurrected on this day, for all that are dead will be resurrected. "I have hope in God, which they themselves also accept, that there will be a resurrection ofrepparttar 141375 dead, both ofrepparttar 141376 just andrepparttar 141377 unjust." (Acts 24:15) ; "Do not marvel at this; forrepparttar 141378 hour is coming in which all who are inrepparttar 141379 graves will hear His voice and come forth -- those who have done good, torepparttar 141380 resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, torepparttar 141381 resurrection of condemnation." (John 5:28,29)

We also see thatrepparttar 141382 earth and allrepparttar 141383 worldly things associated with it will be destroyed when Jesus returns. (See II Peter 3:10) There will be a general judgement whererepparttar 141384 righteous shall be separated fromrepparttar 141385 unrighteous. The righteous will be welcomed into heaven whilerepparttar 141386 unrighteous will be ushered into hell.

Then a new heaven and a new earth will be introduced, "And I saw a new heaven and a new earth, forrepparttar 141387 first heaven andrepparttar 141388 first earth had passed away." (Revelation 21:1) and "Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells." (II Peter 3:13)

Death is not to be feared for those of us who are saved byrepparttar 141389 blood of Christ. It is to be feared, and rightly so, by those who refuse to accept Christ as their Lord and Savior. Personally, I do not fear death, but consider it as Paul did, looking forward torepparttar 141390 day I can be with my Lord. If you are without Christ won't you please consider these things. Give your life torepparttar 141391 One who can save it, give it to Christ.

Stephen Kingery is an author, preacher, teacher and founder of The Home Bible Study Institute.

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