February 1, 1997 Issue
by Mark Deatherage

We often look to Acts chapter 2 to show the establishment of the church (I agree that the church was born in Acts 2), but I do not agree that the church was established on this day. The word established is to "cause to be long lasting." For anything to be long lasting there has to be planning and preparation involved.

If it were a business it would take a lot of preparation to choose what type of product or service would be rendered. Investigations would be made to see if there was a market for this service or product. If it were a marriage it would take time to develop the relationship that would ensure it, would be solid from the start.

It is no different for the Church of Christ. We can look into the Old Testament to the line of salvation and all the planning and preparation. The preparing of a people and a time so the most good could be gained, to prepare for the coming of the Christ! And I believe that we can all see and agree with this.

What we may not realize though is that just as a business, or a marriage, there has to be some work to ensure that it will continue to be a long lasting organization. All the best planning, and the best product do not promise a business to survive. With the church we as individual members, as individual congregations, and as the church on a whole we must undertake the task of ensuring that there will be a future for the Church of Christ. This must be done for the world to have a place go to, for our children to cherish, and for the glorification of God!

But, what can we do to ensure the longevity of the church? There are many ways this may be accomplished. (I) We must always promote what is right according to the law of God. We must not allow my think-so's, or your think-so's, or anyone else's think-so's to usurp the authority of God's perfect law (2) We must fight the attitude: "it's been almost two thousand years since Christ made the promise, it will probably be another two thousand years before he comes back!" This attitude allows us to be lazy about the work that needs to be done. We do not have time to be setting back and taking it easy, there are souls being lost every day that may never have had anyone from the church speak to them about the truth. It is sad to think that so few will take on this responsibility, it is sad to think that so many will be lost! (3) We must try to escape the mind set that is being thrown at us on a daily basis. That is the new trend that it does not matter what you believe, or what I believe. We are all going to meet in heaven someday. This is a false teaching that's trying to get into the church today, and we have got to stop it now! It is already luring the world into a false sense of security, and it will do the same to the church if we will let it. The Bible is still in affect, and it can still be understood the way God intended.

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