The Gospel Observer
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" (Matthew 28:19-20, NASB).
October 7, 2018
1) Do You Believe in Three Gods or One? (Dudley Ross Spears)
2) "Let Nothing Be Done Through Selfish Ambition" (R.J. Evans)
3) News & Notes
Do You Believe in Three Gods or One?
Dudley Ross Spears
Question: Our pastor says the Church of Christ believes in
three Gods and he says the Bible teaches there is only one God. Why
do you believe in three Gods? Don't you believe the Bible?
Answer: Thanks for the question. No offense intended but your
"pastor" is wrong. Yes, indeed, we believe every word of the Bible.
It doesn't matter what the "Church of Christ" believes; what matters
is what the Bible teaches. We believe in the one true and living God
because the Bible teaches it. Your "pastor" actually believes there
is only one person of God. That person to him is Jesus alone, as the
one person in the Godhead. The Bible teaches there is one God, but
there are three divine Beings that make up the one God.
Notice how "one" is used in the Scriptures: Paul said in Romans
12:4, "Just as each of us has one body with many members, and these
members do not all have the same function, so in Christ we who are
many form one body, and each member belongs to all the others." Paul
added, "The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and
though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with
Christ" (1 Corinthians 12:12). You can see that one body does not
mean only one person, but rather many persons making up one body.
Jesus taught that two persons are one without losing their
individual identity. "For this reason a man will leave his father
and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one
flesh. So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has
joined together, let man not separate" (Matthew 19:5-6). You can
clearly see that one here includes two persons. The same is true
with the word God.
Jesus prayed that all believers might be one. Read John 17:20-22:
"My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will
believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one,
Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in
us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given
them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are
one." One in this passage cannot and does not mean only one person.
Furthermore, Jesus prayed that his followers would be one AS (note
the adverb of comparison) he and his father are one. "As" means "in
this way," or "in this manner." Therefore one God does not mean only
one person of God.
Paul spoke to the citizens of Athens, saying: "Forasmuch then as we
are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is
like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man's device"
(Acts 17:29). The word Godhead is also found in Romans 1:20 and
Colossians 2:9. It means "Deity, the state of being God or
divinity." One God is the same as saying one Deity. The Bible says
there is one God (Deity) but never says there is only one person who
is deity. The Bible says a husband and wife are one, but they remain
two distinct people. All believers are one in Christ (John 17:20)
but not one person. If countless billions can be "one" and remain
distinct human persons, three divine Beings can be one and remain
distinct divine persons.
A United Pentecostal creed book reads: "We believe in the one ever
living, eternal God: infinite in power, holy in nature, attributes
and purpose; and possessing absolute, indivisible deity. This one
true God has revealed Himself as Father, through His Son, in
redemption; and as the Holy Spirit, by emanation. ... This one true
God manifested Himself in the Old Testament in divers ways; in the
Son while He walked among men; as the Holy Spirit after the
ascension" (Manual, United Pentecostal Church, page 17). Some of
those who adhere to this creedal dictum explain it this way. "God is
one person, who has manifested Himself in creation as Father, in
redemption as Son, and in the Church as the Holy Ghost."
This is false doctrine about God's being. If God exists eternally as
only one person, manifesting Himself in three different modes, He is
not (and cannot be) a manifestation of all three simultaneously.
Either God is Father (as Pentecostals say He was in creation) or He
is the Son, as they claim He was in redemption, or He is the Holy
Spirit now. He cannot be all three at the same time and be but one
person. Thus, if Jesus was God manifest in the Son in redemption,
but is now manifesting Himself as the Holy Spirit in the church,
Jesus is not now the Son of God.
Those who deny that Jesus is (present tense) the Son of God are
anti-Christ. "Who is a liar but he that denieth that Jesus is the
Christ? He is antichrist, that denieth the Father and the Son.
Whosoever denieth the Son, the same hath not the Father: but he that
acknowledgeth the Son hath the Father also" (1 John 2:22-23). Those
who affirm only one person of God but three separate manifestations
cannot acknowledge the Son and the Father also and are forced to
deny that Jesus is now manifest as God. It is just that simple --
and is very serious. I urge to you and everyone else to reject this
idea of "Only One Person in the Godhead" heresy.
— Via Articles from the LaVista church of Christ
“Let Nothing Be Done Through Selfish Ambition”
For a number of years our culture has had the philosophy of “have it
your way” and “no one can tell me what to do.” This is
strictly a selfish attitude that is usually fostered from early
childhood onward. So many young people grow up getting
everything they want and are not accustomed to being disciplined in
any way. When these kind of attitudes start permeating a
congregation, the local church will start having problems.
Our Lord taught the very opposite. Instead of seeking self
interests first, He tells us to "seek first the kingdom of God and
His righteousness" (Matt. 6:33). Thus, we must always
put Christ and the advancement of His Cause first and foremost in
our lives. If we have created problems because we have to have
everything our way, we need to humbly bow our heads in shame and
repent of our selfish demands which have disrupted the peace,
harmony, and progress of the church.
Our Lord was even willing to be abused and mistreated for
righteousness sake—"who, when He was reviled, did not revile in
return; when He suffered, He did not threaten, but committed Himself
to Him who judges righteously" (1 Pet. 2:23). And just before
the verse cited, we are told that we should look to His example and
"follow His steps" (1 Pet. 2:21).
While living on earth, Jesus said of Himself, "I am meek and lowly
in heart" (Matt. 11:29). Moses, God's chosen leader of the
Israelites, "was very meek, above all men which were upon the face
of the earth" (Num. 12: 3). Likewise, the word of God teaches
those of us who are Christians the following: "Yes, all of you be
submissive to one another, and clothed with humility, for God
resists the proud, But gives grace to the humble. Therefore
humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt
you in due time" (1 Pet. 5:5-6).
Being a faithful child of God is a life of ministry and humble
service to others. Jesus taught this throughout His earthly
ministry; and at the end of His life, He demonstrated what He had
been teaching by washing His disciples’ feet (Jn. 13:5). So
the next time you selfishly feel it has to be your way, or no way,
think of Christ's example and teaching. We should give some
serious thought to what the true spirit of service involves before
we begin to assert our rights in the church by demanding that we
have to have it our way in every matter. Like the Apostle
Paul, we must be willing to forego our rights or liberties when we
know that we are offending or upsetting other Christians by our
actions (See 1 Cor. 8:12-13; 9;1-18; 10:32). Selfishness has
no place in the service of the Lord!
— Via the bulletin for the Southside church of Christ, Gonzales,
Louisiana, August 19, 2018
News & Notes
Joyce Davis is finally scheduled for surgery on her left knee
October 30. Let us be praying that all will go well for her.
(She will also have to have the right knee replaced sometime
in the near future, along with her rotator cuff that is still giving
her pain in her shoulder.)
Joyce Rittenhouse has recently been afflicted with Bell’s
Palsy, which is affecting the right side of her face. Let us
pray that she will soon and speedily be healed.
Myrna Jordan and Melotine Davis have not been feeling
Others to also remember in prayer: Danny Hutcheson (is
almost totally paralyzed and with loss of speech for these last
several months); Roger Montgomery (is still in the hospital
and not doing well after having a liver and kidney transplant); Jim
Lively (has often fallen and has collagenous colitis, which he
is still seeking a cure for); Mary Aldrich (has now been in
rehab, following a burst bowel and a few weeks in the hospital); Bennie
Medlock (aortic aneurysm), Deborah Medlock, Pat &
A.J. Joyner, Rex & Frankie Hadley, Tommy Lindsey, Misty
Thornton, Michelle Rittenhouse, and Mary Vandevander.
WordPress version for this week's bulletin:
Steps That Lead to Eternal Salvation
1) Hear the gospel,
for that is how faith comes (Rom. 10:17; John
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, living for
the Lord; for, if not, salvation can be lost
(Heb. 10:36-39; Rev. 2:10; 2 Pet. 2:20-22).
CHURCH OF CHRIST
1402 Tebeau Street, Waycross, GA 31501
Sunday services: 9:00
a.m. (Bible class); 10 a.m. & 5 p.m.
Tuesday: 2 p.m.
(Ladies' Bible class)
Wednesday: 7 p.m. (Bible
evangelist/editor: Tom Edwards
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