For church information contact Marv Walker ~ 706 816-7190

“Therefore you shall be careful to do as the Lord your God has commanded you; you shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left. (Deuteronomy 5:32 NKJV)

“Whatever I command you, be careful to observe it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it. (Deuteronomy 12:32 NKJV)

So you shall not turn aside from any of the words which I command you this day, to the right or the left, to go after other gods to serve them. (Deuteronomy 28:14 NKJV)

“ Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you; do not turn from it to the right hand or to the left, that you may prosper wherever you go. (Joshua 1:7 NKJV)

“Therefore be very courageous to keep and to do all that is written in the Book of the Law of Moses, lest you turn aside from it to the right hand or to the left, (Joshua 23:6 NKJV)

Some 2,000 years ago Jesus said he was going to build HIS church. (Matthew 16:18) On the day of Pentecost 50 days after his resurrection Jesus's church is in existence. (Acts 2:47)

The operating manual for Jesus' church is the New Testament. In it we learn both what not to do and what to do. By telling us what to do, Jesus automatically tells us what not to do. By telling us what not to do Jesus automatically tells us what to do.

18 And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen. (Matthew 28:18-20 NKJV)

Now these things, brethren, I have figuratively transferred to myself and Apollos for your sakes, that you may learn in us not to think beyond what is written, that none of you may be puffed up on behalf of one against the other. (I Corinthians 4:6 NKJV)

It is said that God does not obligate us to prove what is wrong; he obligates us to prove what is right. “I do not look for prohibition; I look for permission,” say some. I believe the Bible requires us not only to prove what is right – but to reprove what is wrong and sinful.

Sin is a transgression of law (1 John 3:4). Vine says transgression means, “to go aside” or to “go beyond.” All who go beyond the doctrine of Christ, for religious teaching and practice, have to be guilty of transgression – sin (2 John 9:1). Since transgression of law is sinful and since going beyond the doctrine of Christ is transgression, religious teachings and practices not found in the doctrine of Christ are sinful.

The doctrine of Christ cannot be limited to only the teaching about Jesus, it must also include the teaching of Jesus. Caiaphas, the high priest, understood the teaching (doctrine, KJV) of Christ as shown by when he asked Jesus “of his disciples, and of his teaching” (John 18:19). The teaching of Christ was his personal teaching, just as the disciples were his personal followers. To act without authority from Christ’s teaching is sinful because John said it is transgression, which he defined as sin.

The teaching of Christ prohibits sinful transgression. Jesus is our example. When he accused the Pharisees of “transgressing the commandment of God” (Matt. 15:3) he was not proving what was right; he was reproving what was sinful and wrong. He proved it was wrong to make hand washing a ritual of religion. We’d be well served to follow his example.

9 Whoever transgresses and does not abide in the doctrine of Christ does not have God. He who abides in the doctrine of Christ has both the Father and the Son. (II John 1:9)

The faithful Christian is to “have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather reprove them” (Eph. 5:11). The prohibited fellowship is with sinful doctrines and practices. To reprove unfruitful works of darkness is proving what is sinful and wrong.

Elders are shepherds of the flock (local church of Christ) over which the Holy Spirit made them overseers (Acts 20:28; 1 Pet. 5:2-3). A novice cannot be a qualified shepherd (1 Tim. 3:6). A shepherd must be mature and able to prove what is right as well as to prove what is wrong and sinful (Titus 1:9). To qualify as a functioning elder a man must hold “to the faithful word which is according to the teaching, that he may be able to exhort in the sound doctrine, and to convict the gainsayers.” In short, he must reprove what is sinful and wrong by his knowledge of the doctrine of Christ.

There is an old maxim that says, “The specification of one action is automatically the exclusion of another.” The New Testament specifies singing as the kind of music offered in worship to God. There are other kinds of music but they are not mentioned in the New Testament in connection with worship. Is another kind of music in worship included in the teaching of Christ, or does one go beyond the teaching to find it? Going beyond the teaching of Christ is transgression of Christ’s law and John said that is sin. Dear friend, if another kind of music other than singing in worship is not included, by the very nature of language, it is excluded.

I am often told that instrumental music was allowed and used in the Old Testament. That is indeed true. However, Christians are under the New Testament and the mandated worship music is singing from the heart.

speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord, (Ephesians 5:19)

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. (Colossians 3:16)

Based on these thoughts, I confess that I look for both permission and prohibition. I intend to prove all things and hold fast to what is good and abstain from every form of evil (1 Thess. 5:21-22).

Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth. (2 Timothy 2:15)

No more, no less, that what the Bible says...

If we can be of assistance in any way, feel free to contact us.

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For Further Information Contact Marv Walker 706 816-7190
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