For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek. Romans 1:16.
There is no defect in God’s plan for the salvation of men. If the gospel is not to every soul the power of God unto salvation, it is not because the gospel is at fault, but because men are not practical believers, practical receivers of the grace and righteousness of Christ. . . . The professed believers do not take Christ as their personal Saviour, but follow Jesus a great way off. One reason for this lack of personal religion is that they have not been educated in these vital principles.
Another cause for the apathy and indifference in our churches is that the younger members have not been patiently, perseveringly taught how to work as faithful soldiers in Christ’s army. . . .
Many have accepted the truth without digging down deep to understand its foundation principles, and when it is opposed, they forget the arguments and evidences that sustain it. It should be impressed upon all that true and abiding knowledge can be gained only by earnest labor and persevering energy. Were the minds of the people brought under discipline by thorough searching of the Scriptures, there would be hundreds converted to the truth where there is one today. . . .
Many are as ignorant as the very heathen in regard to the way in which a sinner can come to God and be justified before Him. They have no excuse for their ignorance; for the inspired oracles declare, “The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple” (Psalm 119:130). “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom (Proverbs 9:10). . . .
A religious experience that is not founded in Christ and Him alone is worthless. . . . Men of intellectual powers need a clear, scriptural presentation of the plan of salvation. Let the truth in its simplicity and power be presented to them. If this does not hold the attention and arouse the interest, they never can be interested in heavenly and divine things. In every congregation there are souls who are unsatisfied. Every Sabbath they want to hear something definite explaining how they can be saved, how they are to become Christians. The important thing for them to know is, How can a sinner be justified before God?–Letter 23a, Jan. 10, 1893, to Brother E. H. Gates.
This Day With God p. 18
—– please pray: * For victims of the school stabbings who remain in critical condition. * For the families and friends of all involved – including the assailant. * About mental illness and violence in America’s schools. Fran
—–Please pray for the Van Houtan family as their father (age 39) passed away of a heart attack while playing with his seven children. Ann
—–Please pray for Rhonda that God will give her wisdom on how to handle a no-win situation. Pray also that the person who has caused the problem will repent and make things right. Rose
One day when I was seven, I walked across the vacant lot that was behind our house, squeezed through the wooden fence where a board was missing and walked up the alley to my friend, Janey’s house. She was the only other child on our block and we played together every day. As I trudged along, I figured that this would be like any other day of play, but a strange thing was about to happen.
We had not played long, when we noticed something small moving in the middle of the alley. Curious, we left our play and walked over to what it was. To our surprise, it was a bat hobbling along on its “elbows.” I had seen pictures of bats in my schoolbook, but this was the first time I had seen a real one. Intrigued, we looked at it as it looked up at us in fear wondering what we planned to do.
Suddenly, the door opened on the house across the street. A lady, who was visiting the people there, came over to see what we were doing. When she saw that we were looking at a bat, she exclaimed, “Oh, my son would love to have a bat for a pet. Will you pick it up for me?” Without waiting for an answer she turned around and hurried into the house for a container.
Since I was a year older than Janey and much larger, I was the one she had asked. I wasn’t sure what I should do. I had been taught to obey adults, but the thought of picking up that ugly creature was not to my liking. Remembering that my grandfather had always described picking up a snake or other small creature by the back of its neck so that it could not bite, I knew that was what I should do, but I knew that I must be quick and quick was not a normal action for me.
Just then, the lady came back was a paper cup and without another thought, I reached down quickly, picked up the bat by the back of its neck and dropped it into the cup. When I did so, it looked up at me and hissed showing its needle-sharp teeth.
It seems incomprehensible to think of a mother giving her child a bat for a pet. Yet, how often we give our children things equally as dangerous. How often we allow our little ones to watch shows on TV that fill their minds with evil. Many times the program shows children who are disrespectful. Often cartoons are filled with violence. Other programs are full of the occult. As these principles are instilled in the minds of our little ones, their behavior mimics what they see and hear. These “lessons” they are learning stay in their minds long after they have forgotten the actual program to be used by the devil to lure them into sin.
Television is not the only “bat” parents offer their children. The majority of the toys in the store are geared to instill evil principles inside them. They see the commercial for them on TV and feel that they must have the toy for themselves. Many times I see a beautiful little child holding some toy monster. Soon we notice that his face and whole attitude changes as he is acting out what he has seen in the program. It is like giving our little one a sick bat to play with—dangerous indeed.
How careful we should be to do the right even if others urge us to raise our children according to the world’s standard. He urges us, “And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.” Deut 6:6,7
Our Dear Saviour desires to have us teach our dear children to follow Him. He says, Suffer little children to come unto me, and forbid them not: for of such is the kingdom of God .” Luke 18:16 Peter warns us, “Beware lest ye also, being led away with the error of the wicked, fall from your own stedfastness.” 2 Peter 3:17 Yet, that is what most television programs and many of the toys that are sold are geared to do. Jesus’ warning is one that we as parents must take to heart. “Whoso shall entice to sin one of these little ones which believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea.” Matt 18:6
May we guard carefully our children from the evil one’s snares by setting no wicked thing before their eyes. (Ps 101:3) May we ask for the wisdom our Great Creator longs to give us that we may raise our little ones for Him. May we put into practice Paul’s advice, “whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Phil 4:8