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  • The Church Of The New Testament (Part 8 of 8) - Johnny Elmore

    What Membership in the Church Means For the past few weeks, I have been speaking about the church that Jesus promised to build. Jesus said in Matthew 16:18, "Upon this rock I will build my church." From time to time, I have shown that the church which Jesus promised to build was established on the first Pentecost day after Jesus' resurrection, and how all of those who were saved through their obedience to the gospel were added to the church by the Lord. I believe that since that time all of those who have done the same things those...

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  • The Church Of The New Testament (Part 7 of 8) - Johnny Elmore

    The apostle Paul wrote in Ephesians 5:23-32, "For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the savior of the body. Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it; That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word, that he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or...

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  • The Church Of The New Testament (Part 6 of 8) - Johnny Elmore

    All over the land and country, churches will come together to worship. Will all of it be right? Will God accept the worship of every individual, and will it meet with his approval? Can we know what it takes to constitute acceptable worship? What does it mean to worship? And what is the worship of the church? The term "worship," as a verb is defined "to adore, bow down to, deify, exalt, honor, idolize, pray to, and revere." As a noun, it is "an act, or acts of homage, adoration, exaltation and reverence, offered by an individual to...

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  • The Church Of The New Testament (Part 5 of 8) - Johnny Elmore

    Jesus said in Mark 13:34, "For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch." From this statement of Jesus, we learn that the Son of man (Jesus) has taken a far journey (into heaven), leaving his house (the church), "and to every man his work." This teaches me that there is work to be done in the church. What is the church? Paul said in 1 Corinthians 12:27, "Ye are the body of...

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  • The Church Of The New Testament (Part 4 of 8) - Johnny Elmore

    In this series of lessons, we have studied about the establishment of the church, the mission of the church, and the unity of the church. In this lesson, I want to consider the identity of the church. Now when I say "identity of the church," there are a number of things implied. I imply, first of all that there is such an institution upon the earth known as the church. That is something easily established, because it was promised by the prophets, and also by Christ himself, for he said: "Upon this rock I will build my church"...

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  • The Church Of The New Testament (Part 3 of 8) - Johnny Elmore

    I have been discussing the church which Jesus promised to build in Matthew 16: 18. We have studied the establishment of the church and the mission of the church. And concerning the church, I am aware that there is a philosophy that states that a man does not have to become a member of the church to be saved. Let me say in reply to that teaching; that if one man can be saved on the outside as well as on the inside, then two men could also be saved. If two men can be saved without being in...

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  • The Church of the New Testament (Part 2 of 8) - Johnny Elmore

    What is the mission of the church? What is its reason or purpose for being in the world? Just as the church had a divine beginning, even so it has a divine mission. The mission of the church is altogether spiritual. First, I want to state what the mission of the church is not. What its Mission is Not The mission of the church is not to be a political institution. It was never the mission of the church to try to direct and control the affairs of state. Jesus taught that there is to be a separation of church...

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  • The Church of the New Testament (Part 1 of 8) - Johnny Elmore

    This is the first in a series of studies concerning that institution for which Christ died and bought with his own precious blood, and which was filled with his Spirit. I refer to the institution that we designate the church. It is my firm belief that it is possible for men and women today to become members of the church that Jesus built. Perhaps it is hardly necessary to attempt to prove that there is such an institution as the church now in existence, since the great majority of people now believe that God does have an organization...

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  • Dressed For Battle - Rick Martin (Old Paths Advocate, August 1, 1992)

    Every day of their lives Christians are faced with a spiritual battle. This battle involves far more people, brings far more destruction, and causes more confusion than any military conflict. The apostle Peter wrote of this spiritual conflict in 1 Peter 5:8-9, “Be sober, be vigilant, because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about seeking whom he may devour. Whom resist steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.� Because of Satan’s craftiness it is important to identify our enemy and to be aware of the...

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  • Praying For One Another - Newsletter February 2008 V2N2 BJF

    James Montgomery, a British poet and hymn writer, once wrote, “Prayer is the Christian’s vital breath, the Christian’s native air�. Like oxygen is needed for the physical body to live, prayer is essential for the spiritual man to live. As the physical body depends upon air in order to develop and grow, so the spiritual man is dependent upon prayer to sustain his growth and development as a Christian. And while there are other integral ingredients to physical growth, like food and water, there are also other important elements for spiritual development - the internalizing of God’s Word...

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  • What Is Good For The Goose Is Good For The Church! - Newsletter January 2008 V2N1 BJF

    Do you know which geese in the classic ‘V’ formation do all the honking? Do you know why? Read on for these pressing answers and more. There are few things more important in a congregation than having committed, qualified, zealous, and willing leaders. We often hear great messages preached on what it takes to lead the church, and that is fantastic. We need this preaching and we need men that listen and step up and become committed to living their lives in such a way that they can be effective leaders in their congregations. Some congregations get a bit...

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  • He Caused Israel To Sin - BJF Newsletter 12-23-2007 Volume 1, Number 21

    There were a number of causes that led up to the division of God’s people in the days of Rehoboam, as recorded in 1 Kings 12, but the proverbial straw that broke the camels back was Rehoboam’s total and blatant rejection of the elders who advised him to lighten the heavy taxation imposed upon Israel under the reign of Solomon; they also advised him that if he would serve the people they would in turn serve him. This advice was rejected by Rehoboam’s willingness to instead implement the council of his contemporaries who told him to increase the...

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  • The Plumbline of God - J. Wayne McKamie

    “Behold, the Lord stood upon a wall made by a plumbline, with a plumbline in his hand. And the Lord said unto me, Amos what seest thou? And I said, A plumbline. Then said the Lord, Behold, I set a plumbline in the midst of my people Israel: I will not again pass by them any more.� These words, from the eighth century before Christ, were certainly written for our learning and admonition. In this we are reminded that though times may change, though customs may vary, though dispensations may give way to new and better ones, human nature...

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  • You Can Smash The Barometer, But You Can't Stop The Storm - BJF Newsletter 11-04-2007 Volume 1 Number 18

    Several years ago I read in a sermon outline book about a preacher by the name of Gayle Oler who published a story in his weekly religious paper regarding a business man on Long Island who received an expensive barometer in the mail. While examining the instrument he noticed that the needle seemed to be broken as it was pointing far over to one side. He shook it, but to no avail, the instrument still didn’t seem to be working. In disgust he called in his secretary, dictated a letter to the manufacturer expressing how incensed he was...

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  • Stand For Something or Fall For Anything - BJF Newsletter 10-07-2007 Volume 1 Number 16

    For 18 years as a school bus driver in the Cincinnati, Ohio area each work morning started out with an inspection of the bus. As required by law, it was to be a methodical examination of the bus to make sure that it was safe for operation in the transportation of students going to and from school. To drivers this procedure was referred to as ’pre-tripping the bus’ and was quite tasking after awhile, especially during inclement weather. The inspection was more than just a cursory look and if done correctly would take about 15 minutes. It included...

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  • Somebody's Wrong, and I Think That We Are! - BJF Newsletter 09-09-2007 Volume 1 Number 15

    It seems that more and more people, in an effort to circumvent their own guilt and accountability for wrong doing, either plead ignorance or temporary insanity, unless of course they just simply shift the blame to something or someone else. In the early 1970’s Flip Wilson played the character Geraldine Jones, a sassy woman that was always warning people that her boyfriend Killer (who, if not in prison was at the pool hall) would soon be home. Geraldine was often somewhere she should not have been, or doing something she should not have been doing. When someone would...

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  • The World Of Romans One - BJF Newsletter 08-15-07 Volume 1 Number 14

    The Roman letter was written from Corinth on the third missionary journey of the apostle Paul in the winter of 54 or 55. Paul was in the home of Gaius, and Tertius was by his side as he wrote by the direction of the Holy Spirit. Paul began this great letter by saying, "Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ." I think it is interesting that Paul, a rich, powerful, influential Jew, was proud to be a servant, a bond slave of the Lord Jesus Christ. Notice also that Paul was called to be an apostle, "separated unto the gospel...

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  • In Everything Give Thanks - BJF Newsletter 07-08-07 Volume 1 Number 12

    One of the reasons the Hebrews of long ago wandered in the wilderness of Sin was their continual murmuring and complaining. Most of them were a thankless people who would rather have been enslaved in Egyptian bondage under Pharaoh than to have been guided by the eternal God in heaven. God was disgusted with the way His people were treated by the slave-driving Egyptian taskmasters. He loved and cared for His people and only wanted to bless them by His providential hand. In His omniscient manner, God brought up a leader by the name of Moses who unwittingly was...

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  • The Old Paths - BJF Newsletter 06-24-07 Volume 1 Number 11

    Your attention is respectfully directed to the sixth chapter of Jeremiah, where we find the prophet speaking of the impending doom of the tribes of Benjamin and Judah. He tells them of the hostile army approaching from the north, which would lay siege to Jerusalem, so that they could storm the city (verses 1-8). This is the breaking of judgment over them from the Lord. Because they will listen to no warning, the judgment will be unsparingly rendered. They had allowed themselves to be confirmed in their shameless conduct by false prophets and wicked priests, and since they had...

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  • Pearls of Wisdom! - BJF Newsletter 06-20-07 Volume 1 Number 10

    As hard as it may seem to imagine it’s been almost 29 years since walking down the aisle at the Collinsville High gymnasium to move the tassel from one side of the graduation cap to the other, and be handed a diploma to certify completion in the 12 year course of public education. From that day to the present there have been many challenging moments in life that have resulted in successes as well as failures; thankfully the former outnumber the latter! Indeed there have been lessons in life that have been learned “the hard way�! O what a...

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  • Receiving Funds Into The Treasury From Other Churches - BJF Newsletter 04-29-07 Volume 1, Number 8

    Note: In the August 2006 issue of the Old Paths Advocate appeared a question in The Querist Column and answered by Ronny F. Wade. The question was: ‘Is it scriptural for a church to plan a meeting (or work) larger than they can afford and receive funds into their treasury from other congregations?’ I believe this question to be of great importance and warrants serious attention. The following is Ronny’s reply with which I totally concur. BJF

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  • Having Enough Sense to Come In Out Of the Rain - BJF Newsletter 03-18-07 Volume 1 Number 5

    In Cincinnati a few years ago while in the middle of our morning walk, Ruth and I got caught in the rain without an umbrella. We left the house about 7:15 one Wednesday morning and walked to a nearby park about a mile and a half away. It was a nice place to frequent with a beautiful lake that had almost two miles of sidewalk around its perimeter. The lake was nestled in a valley shadowed by evergreen trees, large oaks, and a number of redbuds and dogwoods. Ruth and I often enjoyed each others company as we strolled...

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  • Can You Say Shibboleth? - BJF 040107 Newsletter Volume 1 Number 6

    When I first began driving a school bus shortly after moving to Cincinnati in 1987 the students on my bus would often make fun of the way I talked. ‘Howdy’, ‘Ya’ll’, and a few other words were a dead give-away that I wasn’t from that part of the country. Even “normal� words were spoken with a certain parlance that folks in the Midwest new that I was from Texas or Oklahoma. Admittedly, when Ruth and I first met there was an obvious difference in some of the ways we communicated. If I didn’t hear or understand something she said...

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  • Let The Lower Lights Be Burning - BJF Newsletter 031107 Volume 1 Number 4

    Many years ago, as night was approaching on Lake Erie, the pilot of a ship encountered a heavy storm. Feeling deeply about his responsibility for the lives of his passengers and crew, he headed for Cleveland, the nearest harbor. Finally he saw the beacon in the tower of the lighthouse, but as he approached he could not see any lower lights on the shore to guide him into the channel. He attempted to enter the harbor, but missed it, and his ship was wrecked upon the protruding rocks. Many lives were lost because of the neglect of the watchman...

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  • The Faithful Elderly in Their Sunset Years! - BJF Newsletter 041507 Volume 1 Number 7

    A few weeks ago I received a phone call from a sister in Indiana who told me that Hazel Loughmiller had died. Upon receiving this news my heart sank with deep sorrow and my mind flashed back over the past 25 years that I had known this sweet lady. This wonderful sister in Christ, along with her husband Joe, who preceded her in death by a few years, were instrumental in Ruth and I becoming acquainted at the first Lebanon meeting that began in 1981. From that point on the Loughmillers were a source of strength and encouragement to...

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  • Who Needs A Fiery Serpent? - BJF Newsletter 06-13-07 Volume 1, Number 9

    As some are already aware, I had an opportunity to go with Derald Boman to Okeene, Oklahoma to the annual rattlesnake roundup last weekend. Every year one of the local ranchers invites snake hunting enthusiasts to try their skills against one of the most dangerous snakes in America - the diamondback! With 16 inch snake-proof boots, a pinner (a device for picking up snakes), and a gunny sack, we ventured into one of western Oklahoma’s canyons in hope to nab a big one. Ten minutes from the truck and about a third of the way up the canyon wall we quickly recognized the sound of rattling buttons from the vibrating tail of a diamondback only a few feet away. With adrenaline flowing, the heart frantically racing, and blood pumping ferociously, Derald takes the pinner while I’m close behind with the gunny sack and together we catch our first snake!

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  • More About Jesus - BJF Newsletter 02-18-07 Volume 1, Number 3

    Centuries ago an angel announced to Joseph concerning Mary, his wife, “...that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shall call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins…and he called his name Jesus� (Matthew 1:20-21, 25).

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  • Discerning Questions - Bill Fergerson

    When faced with a deed, a word, an action, an attitude, a circumstance, which a decision will be summoned, before participating in such, ask the series of questions below. They can serve as a method in helping to discern right and wrong, good and bad. While nothing takes the place of training our senses with the Word of God (Hebrews 5:12-14), the following questions of personal interrogation can go a long way toward one maturing in Christ.

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