House Church

A Study of Colossians 4:15–16

 Salute the brethren which are in Laodicea, and Nymphas, and the church which is in his house.

And when this epistle is read among you, cause that it be read also in the church of the Laodiceans; and that ye likewise read the epistle from Laodicea. (Colossians 4:15–16)

A few closing salutations from the apostle to the Colossians come as we near the end of this blessed epistle.  Paul sent his own salutations through the Colossian assembly to another group of brethren in Laodicea, a city not far from Colosse.

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Grace

church-history-graphicThis is chapter 2 from The Gospel and its Ministry by Sir Robert Anderson.  This is a beautiful chapter extolling the greatness of God’s grace against the backdrop of man’s great wickedness.  I sat down and read this again.  Then I sat down and read it again and decided that it is certainly worth sharing.  I hope all of you enjoy it, and if you would like the book, it can be downloaded by clicking on the title in red at the beginning of this paragraph, or you can purchase a paper copy here.

“The Gospel of the glory of the blessed God!”¹

“Show me Thy glory, I beseech Thee,” was the prayer of Moses; and God answered, “I will make all My goodness pass before thee, and I will proclaim the name of Jehovah before thee, and will be gracious to whom I will be gracious, and will show mercy on whom I will show mercy” (Exodus 33:18, 19). God’s highest glory displays itself in sovereign grace, therefore it is that the gospel of His grace is the gospel of His glory.

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Perfect and Complete

A Study of Colossians 4:12–13

Epaphras, who is one of you, a servant of Christ, saluteth you, always labouring fervently for you in prayers, that ye may stand perfect and complete in all the will of God. For I bear him record, that he hath a great zeal for you, and them that are in Laodicea, and them in Hierapolis. (Colossians 4:12–13)

We first met Epaphras in chapter 1, where we found out that the Colossian saints learned the gospel of the grace of God from him:

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Psychological Health

Psychology literally means “the study of the soul”, derived from the terms ψυχή — psukhē, “breath, spirit, soul” and λογία — logia, “study of” or “research”.  In our New Testament Scriptures, the word psukhē is most often translated soul, and it would do us well to find out from the Creator of the human soul those things that will cultivate psychological, or soul health.

Now from the Scriptures, we will not find a mere academic study, but we will find practical instructions that, if followed by believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, contain a promise from the God of Peace that the believer will have the protection of the peace of God.

Fellow Workers unto the Kingdom of God

A Study of Colossians 4:10–11

Aristarchus my fellowprisoner saluteth you, and Marcus, sister’s son to Barnabas, (touching whom ye received commandments: if he come unto you, receive him;) And Jesus, which is called Justus, who are of the circumcision. These only are my fellowworkers unto the kingdom of God, which have been a comfort unto me. (Colossians 4:10–11)

The first of Paul’s fellow laborers is also called a fellow prisoner.  We might call him a cell mate, although being a fellow prisoner does not necessarily mean in the same prison, but in prison for the same reason.  Paul was a prisoner of Jesus Christ for the Gentiles (Ephesians 3:1), and also a prisoner for the mystery of Christ (Colossians 4:3).  Aristarchus was a prisoner in bonds (not free to come and go as he pleased), somewhere near to the apostle so as he could add his salutations, but he is more a fellow prisoner for the same cause:  the mystery of Christ.

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Two Servants

A Study of Colossians 4:7–9

All my state shall Tychicus declare unto you, who is a beloved brother, and a faithful minister and fellowservant in the Lord: Whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that he might know your estate, and comfort your hearts; With Onesimus, a faithful and beloved brother, who is one of you. They shall make known unto you all things which are done here. (Colossians 4:7–9)

The Olive Tree

I have seen endless debates on this passage about the olive tree in Romans 11.  The following is my attempt to speak on what it is that the Apostle Paul is speaking about in this more difficult portion of Scripture.  It is especially difficult if we force belief systems into this passage rather than looking at what the passage says and refining our belief systems to what the Book says. Many use this passage to teach against security, or to teach “replacement theology”, and some to combat these teach this passage as in some way not applicable to us today.  So now, let us dive in, right to Romans 11:13:


Romans 11:13 — For I speak to you GENTILES, inasmuch as I am the APOSTLE OF THE GENTILES, I magnify mine office:

Here Paul speaks to Gentiles as such.  Not to saved Gentiles particularly, nor to unsaved Gentiles, but to Gentiles.  He states this as having authority to speak to them because he is the apostle of the Gentiles.  The position of apostle of the Gentiles was not a position grasped at, but a position given. “Verily, verily, I say unto you, he that receiveth whomsoever I send receiveth Me; and he that receiveth Me receiveth Him that sent Me” (John 13:20).

Acts 22:21 — “And [the Lord] said unto me, Depart: for I will send thee far hence unto the Gentiles.”

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Simple As Can Be

This is a piece illustrating the importance of properly understanding the scriptures.  Many may ask, what is the point of teaching all this doctrine about “rightly dividing the word of truth.”  We can also begin to understand why if the correct path is not followed, confusion is the inevitable result.  This piece by Pastor Cornelius R. Stam shows the importance of  understanding what God is doing today and not confusing the “preaching of Jesus Christ according to the revelation of the mystery” with God’s dealings with men in other ages.  If evangelism is the most important thing that we can do, it is of utmost importance that we get it right and not leave the unsaved that we are evangelizing more lost than ever.


stam

Have you ever heard some preacher say, “There are many things in the Bible which are hard to understand but, thank God, the plan of salvation is as simple as can be?”

Well, it is simple IF…

For the rest you will have to read this article.

Yes, the plan of salvation is simple IF the Scriptures are rightly divided. Otherwise it is far from simple. Hence the grave responsibility upon those engaged in the work of the Lord to obey II Timothy 2:15:

“STUDY TO SHOW THYSELF APPROVED UNTO GOD, A WORKMAN THAT NEEDETH NOT TO BE ASHAMED, RIGHTLY DIVIDING THE WORD OF TRUTH.”

Let us illustrate:

Here in the heart of Indianapolis, let us say, stands a man who has been convicted of his sin. He is miserable as, at last, he sees himself as he really is—a guilty, condemned sinner.

As he stands there brooding, Mr. Average Fundamentalist comes walking down the street. In his lapel he has a button which reads “Jesus Saves.” Seeing this our unsaved friend thinks, “Here is the man for me,” and approaching him says, “I wonder if you can help me. I’m in trouble. What must I do to be saved?”

“Why!” exclaims Mr. Average Fundamentalist, “I’m so glad you ask me. There are some things in the Bible which are hard to understand but, thank God, the way of salvation is as simple as can be.

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The Gospel of the Kingdom

Here is a short Bible study on the contents of the gospel of the kingdom as John the Baptist and the Lord Jesus Himself presented in Matthew, Mark, and Luke.  I have decided to not comment until the end, and just leave God’s word to speak for itself.

According to Matthew

In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judæa, And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. For this is He that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make His paths straight. (Matthew 3:1–3) Continue reading “The Gospel of the Kingdom”