For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do. (Hebrews 4:12-13)
WHEN I WAS 17, FINISHING HIGH SCHOOL and working in the afternoons in my father’s sawmill in Stevenson, Alabama, all the area Baptist churches had an “M Night” at the largest church auditorium in Bridgeport, Alabama.” “M Night” was short for: “Mass Youth Meeting.” The auditorium was packed. The special speaker made this statement: “The Bible is a sufficient guide for faith and practice.” Somehow, I knew I had just heard one of the greatest statements I had ever heard or might ever hear again in my lifetime.
I BEGAN GOING TO CHURCH IN MY MOTHER'S WOMB IN 1934 and I had never heard that statement before. It needs to be said every Sunday morning in every Bible-believing church in America! The preacher said it in 1951, because many churches were getting weak on it. They weakened first in the first 11 chapters of Genesis. Then, in just ten short years, the following happened.
IN 1961, THE BROADMAN PRESS, THE PUBLISHING ARM of the Southern Baptist Convention, published a book, authored by Ralph Elliott, the chair of the Old Testament Department that put the Southern Baptist Convention in an uproar. In summary, Dr. Elliott’s book declared that Genesis was filled with myth and was not a reliable book of history, that Adam and Eve were not historical figures and that the Genesis flood was not world-wide but local; that Abraham did not actually hear the voice of God commanding him to sacrifice Isaac. Here is a good article that goes into more detail.
THIS WEEK, I WANT TO FOCUS ON THE BIBLE and point out its importance in the Christian faith. One of the best statements about the Bible is found inside the cover of Gideon Bibles placed in motels and doctors’ offices. I’m reproducing their statement in full because it is very good. The Gideon statement will take up the rest of Morning Minute for today.
“THE BIBLE CONTAINS THE MIND OF GOD, the state of man, the way of salvation, the doom of sinners, and the happiness of believers. Its doctrines are holy, its precepts are binding, its histories are true, and its decisions are immutable.
“READ IT TO BE WISE, BELIEVE IT TO BE SAFE, and practice it to be holy. It contains light to direct you, food to support you, and comfort to cheer you.
“IT IS THE TRAVELER'S MAP, the pilgrim’s staff, the pilot’s compass, the soldier’s sword and the Christian’s charter. Here too, Heaven is opened and the gates of Hell disclosed.
“Christ is its grand subject, our good its design, and the glory of God its end. It should fill the memory, rule the heart and guide the feet. Read it slowly, frequently and prayerfully. It is a mine of wealth, a paradise of glory, and a river of pleasure.
“IT IS GIVEN YOU IN LIFE, WILL BE OPENED AT THE JUDGMENT, and be remembered forever. It involves the highest responsibility, rewards the greatest labor, and will condemn all who trifle with its sacred contents.
THE GIDEON STATEMENT CONTINUES: “While these words are not part of the sacred text of the Bible, the thoughts expressed here reflect all that the Bible reveals about man and man’s relationship to God.
“THE GIDEONS INTERNATIONAL BELIEVES IN THE INERRANCY OF THE WORD OF GOD, holding that it’s the true story of a Savior, Jesus Christ, who was God’s Son, born of a virgin. And who died sinless on a cross as a sacrifice for the sin of all who put their faith in Him. We believe He arose again from the grave, conquering death. He is, in fact, the only One through whom mankind can acquire redemption and have relationship with God the Father.
“WE PRAY THAT IF YOU'VE NOT RECEIVED CHRIST AS YOUR SAVIOR, you’ll consider now the eternal importance of this decision. It is in fact, the most important decision you’ll ever make because it is the one and only decision that will determine where you’ll spend your eternity, in heaven or in hell.” (End quotation from Gideon Bible.)
Read Through the Bible in a Year
June 24, 2019 – MONDAY
A.M. Jude 1-3 P.M. Acts 7:1-19
(Bible Gateway will read this to you if you like. Look for the speaker icon.)
Great Memory Verse:
Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee. (Psalm 119:11)
Song for Today:
The Holy Hills of Heaven Call Me (5:49) (Gaither Group)
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