The Gospel Observer

"Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations...teaching them to observe all that I commanded you, and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age" (Matt. 28:19,20).
August 8, 2010


1) Trust in the Lord (Proverbs 3:5-7) (David Phillips)
2) A Prepared Heart (Glenn Melton)
3) Be Careful What You Say (Greg Gwin)


Trust in the Lord
Proverbs 3:5-7

by David Phillips

God knew what He was doing when He created the heavens and the earth in six days (Ps. 19:1-6).  

God knew what He was doing when He put Adam and Eve in the garden and also placed in the midst of the garden the tree of life along with the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Gen. 2:8-9; 15-17).

God knew what He was doing, after man first sinned, when He promised the coming of One who would deal a fatal blow to that lying serpent who deceived the woman (Gen. 3:15).  

God knew what He was doing when He destroyed the whole world by flood because of wickedness, while sparing eight souls in the ark (2 Pet. 3:5-7).  

God knew what He was doing when He chose one family from among all the families of the earth to be His special people and through whom the Christ would come (Gen. 22:18; Gal. 3:16).  

God knew what He was doing when He established a covenant with that people; a law which taught men the true nature of sin as contrasted with the glory of God's righteousness, and which taught us of our absolute need for the grace of God because of our sins (Gal. 3:19, 22- 25).  

God knew what He was doing when He chose a betrothed virgin of humble means to give birth to the Son of God, the Savior of the world and King over all (Matt. 1:18-25; Luke 1:26-38).  

God knew what He was doing when He sent John the baptizer, "the voice of one crying in the wilderness," to prepare the way of the Lord (Matt. 3:1-3).  

God knew what He was doing when He allowed the Christ to suffer at the hands of godless men and to face a horrible death on the cross in order to provide the means of salvation for the world (1 Cor. 1:18-25).  

We know that God knew what He was doing because He raised His only begotten Son from the dead on the third day, giving Him a name that is above every name to reign as King eternal (Phil. 2:9-11). Through that mighty work God bound Satan, greatly limiting his power, and provided freedom for all those who would escape the condemnation and darkness that is in the world (Luke 11:21-23; Eph. 2:1-7).  

God knew what He was doing when He sent the apostles into all the world to proclaim the glorious gospel, and the Holy Spirit to reveal all truth and to confirm, by the signs, wonders and miracles that were done, the word that was preached (John 16:12- 15; Heb. 2:1-4).  

God knew what He was doing when He set up His church in such a way to simultaneously glorify Him, cause the body of Christ to grow, and proclaim the gospel to lost souls all over the world, all through the diligent working of its members, guided by His inspired word.  

God knew what He was doing when He purposed that the apostles and prophets should put into writing His inspired word -- the faith which was delivered one time for all time -- for men in every generation to read, understand and believe (Eph. 3:3-5; 1 Tim. 2:3,4).  

God knew what He was doing when He commanded that the inspired Scriptures be copied and shared between the churches (Col. 4:16).  

God knew what He was doing when He, being aware of the tendency of men to idolize and worship relics of bygone ages, allowed the original New Testament manuscripts written by the apostles to be lost to men while preserving their content through the copies that were made (Num. 21:4ff.; 2 Kings 18:4).  

From the beginning God has always known what He has been doing. We mere mortals cannot hope to comprehend the depth of His wisdom, for "`For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways My ways,' says the Lord. `For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts'" (Isaiah 55:8,9).  

Who is man to question what God has done or has allowed to happen and why? "For shall the thing made say of him who made it, `He did not make me'? Or shall the thing formed say of him who formed it, `He has no understanding'?" (Isa. 29:16).  

When all is said and done and the heavens and earth are rolled up like a scroll (Isa. 34:4), then all will see that the way God chose to do things was in every way the best way. In that day there will be two groups of people: There will be those who, while living on earth, recognized that God's ways are in every way perfect -- these will have humbly trusted His wisdom and power and submitted to His commands. Then there will be those who, also while living on the earth, will not have trusted in the Lord -- these will have questioned His ways and sought alternatives to His divine purpose.  Truly, these will experience the full significance of Proverbs 16:25.  

Are you seeking answers to life's questions? Do you desire knowledge and wisdom? Do you want to learn contentment and the means of worthwhile gain? Then here is the answer to your every question: "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. Do not be wise in your own eyes; Fear the Lord and depart from evil" (Proverbs 3:5-7).  

God knows what He is doing!  Trust Him!

-- Via In Newness of Life, January 24, 2010


A Prepared Heart
by Glenn Melton

"Ezra the son of Seraiah . . . the son of Aaron the chief priest . . . went up from Babylon; and he was a ready scribe in the law of Moses . . . for Ezra had prepared his heart to seek the law of the Lord, and to do it, and to teach in Israel statutes and judgments" (Ezra 1:1-10). "So king Rehoboam . . . did evil, because he prepared not his heart to seek the Lord" (II Chronicles 12:13,14). What a contrast between Ezra and Rehoboam. Ezra was helpful in teaching Israel the law; Rehoboam was instrumental in the cause of division among the tribes. What a difference preparation of the heart made.  May we suggest some things that may have contributed to the preparation of Ezra's heart?

(1) The influence of godly parents. Ezra's father was a priest and possibly one who taught the law. The influence of such a man could tend to lead his children to God. Blessed are the children of the righteous.  

(2) Seeing the consequences of disobedience. Ezra had been in captivity and saw firsthand the results of disobedience. This could well have had a part in helping him to see how much better it is to please God.  

(3) Moral uprightness. Consider what it did for Joseph, David, and Esther. "Remember thy creator in... thy youth" (Eccl. 12:1).  

(4) Purity of mind. "Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life" (Prov. 4:23).  

(5) Ezra's knowledge of the law, Israel's history, and the promises made to Abraham, Moses, and David could motivate him to please God. Also, Ezra may have known of Daniel, who would have been a good role model.  

How well have we prepared our heart to seek the law of God, to do it, and teach it to others?

-- Via The Dyersburg Pathfinder, Vol. 29, No. 11, May 15, 1996


Be Careful What You Say
by Greg Gwin

There are numerous statements in the Proverbs about the use of our tongues. We are warned about the sins we can commit with our words, but we are also encouraged about the good that can be done if we exercise caution in our speech. Consider these important truths:

15:1,2 "A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger. The tongue of the wise useth knowledge aright: but the mouth of fools poureth out foolishness."

29:11  "A fool uttereth all his mind: but a wise man keepeth it in till afterwards."

l2:22  "Lying lips are abomination to the Lord: but they that deal truly are his delight."

12:18 "There is that speaketh like the piercings of a sword: but the tongue of the wise is health."

16:13  "Righteous lips are the delight of kings; and they love him that speaketh right."

10:11  "The mouth of a righteous man is a well of life: but violence covereth the mouth of the wicked."

10:20  "The tongue of the just is as choice silver: the heart of the wicked is little worth."

15:4  "A wholesome tongue is a tree of life: but perverseness therein is a breach in the spirit."

25:11  "A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver."

-- via The Beacon, July 20, 2010

"For it is You who blesses the righteous man, O LORD, You surround him with favor as with a shield" (Psalm 5:12).

The Steps That Lead to Eternal Salvation

1) Hear the gospel, for that is how faith comes (Rom. 10:17;  John 20:30,31).
2) Believe in the deity of Christ (John 8:24; John 3:18).
3) Repent of sins (Luke 13:5; Acts 17:30).
4) Confess faith in Christ (Rom. 10:9,10; Acts 8:36-38).
5) Be baptized in water for the remission of sins (Mark 16:16; Acts 2:38; 22:16; Rom. 6:3,4; Gal. 3:26,27; 1 Pet. 3:21).
6) Continue in the faith; for, if not, salvation can be lost (Heb. 10:36-39; Rev. 2:10; 2 Pet. 2:20-22).

201 Rushing Road (at the Hampton Inn), Denham Springs, Louisiana 70726
Sunday services: 9:15 AM (Bible class); 10 AM & 4 PM (worship)
evangelist/editor: Tom Edwards (225) 667-4520
http://home.onemain.com/~tedwards/go (Gospel Observer website)
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Take the Denham Springs exit (exit 10) off of I-12.  At the end of the exit ramp, turn north.  Go about a stone's throw to Rushing Road.  (You'll see a Starbucks, Circle K, and two other gas stations; with each on each corner.)  Turn left on Rushing Road, and go a little less than 0.3 of a mile.  Hampton Inn will be on the right.  We assemble in its meeting room, which is very close to the reception counter.  Just walk pass the check-in counter; turn right at the hall.  The first and second doors on the left lead to where we meet.