This month, in our study of transformation, we will look at our thoughts about the Bible. By what measure will we judge ourselves to see if we are becoming more and more like Jesus? By the opinions of the world? Or by the word of God? Can we trust the Word of God to guide us in our lives? How important is it that Christians study Scripture and apply it to their lives? With this in mind, let us look briefly at some other ideas that often shape us and our thinking more than we realize.
THE BOOK OF SECOND OPINIONS
Although not officially named, it seems that this has become a commonly quoted book among our beloved churches of Christ. So dependent are many on the teachings of Second Opinions that, when they hear Bible teaching, they assume and attribute it to the Book of Opinions (“Oh, that’s just your opinion!”). Since this book is not in print as yet, let us consider some excerpts from the infamous book of human revelation – the BOOK OF SECOND OPINIONS.
“It pleased God by foolish preaching to keep people coming to church, regardless of what they believe.” (2 Opinions 1:21; cf. 1 Corinthians 1:21)
“Say you are sorry and be baptized, then you get the gift of being able to remain in your sinful relationship.” (2 Opinions 2:38; cf. Acts 2:38).
“All Scripture is inspired by God, but we cannot understand it alike, and it does not apply to us today, but it is still profitable, although we are not sure for what.” (2 Opinions 3:16; cf 2 Timothy 3:16)
“If any man speaks, let him not use too many oracles of God.” (2 Opinions 4:11; cf. 1 Peter 4:11)
“Have fellowship with those who see the Bible differently so you can teach them, but do not hurt their feelings.” (2 Opinions 5:11; cf. Ephesians 5:11)
“We do not know whether or not the unrighteous will inherit the kingdom of God; after all, it is not our place to judge.” (2 Opinions 6:9; cf.1 Corinthians 6:9)
“Be aware that there is no such thing as a false prophet, for to call a person a false teacher questions his motives, and Jesus would not do that.” (2 Opinions 7:15; cf. Matthew 7:15).
“You can’t know the truth, but you can know it makes you free.” (2 Opinions 8:31-32; cf. John 8:31-32).
“It is appointed unto men once to die, then just about everyone goes to heaven.” (2 Opinions 9:27; Hebrews 9:27).
“Let him that thinketh he standeth not worry, lest he lose his positive mental attitude.” (2 Opinions 10:12; cf. 1 Corinthians 10:12).
“Without faith it would be mighty difficult to please God, but then again, all things are possible with God.” (2 Opinions 11:6; cf. Hebrews 11:6).
“He that rejected me and receiveth not my words has apparently chosen to travel a different route on the road map to heaven.” (2 Opinions 12:48; cf. John 12:48).
“Love, honor and respect your elders, but don’t let these old fellows think they have the rule over you; after all, they are supposed to lead by example.” (2 Opinions 13:17; cf. Hebrews 13:17).
After a careful consideration of just a few excerpts from this man-made book of Second Opinions, surely all would agree that it would behoove the cause of Jesus to see that it never does get printed. That being the case, let us also pray that elders, preachers and teachers refrain from quoting or teaching from this disastrous piece of literature, “THE BOOK OF SECOND OPINIONS.”
David Lee Henderson El Paso TX.
SOME THOUGHTS ON THE BIBLE SCHOOL
In 1991 a bulletin article was written by Bailey McBride who stated these things:
“. . . a lack of education in the Bible has made churches at risk. Within the church, Bible education has not been the subject of much serious examination during the past twenty years. Other issues had greater visibility and priority. The result is that members of the churches of Christ seem to have less Bible knowledge than the previous generation and, more significantly, knowing the Bible is a lower priority in the personal lives of most church members today.
“Most churches of Christ in the 20th century have had a strong commitment to Sunday school – Bible classes on Sunday morning for all ages. In addition, most churches have had classes on Wednesday evenings, Vacation Bible schools and often special classes at other times. Some churches have made minor changes in the pattern; others have reduced their commitment to Bible study BECAUSE TEACHERS ARE HARD TO FIND AND MEMBERS ARE SO BUSY THAT ITS DIFFICULT TO GATHER A CROWD EACH WEEK . . . .
“Almost every church knows that recruiting Bible teachers is the most painful job in the congregation. People are too busy to study, prepare and deliver in any class at any level. Many of the most dedicated teachers have a secret suspicion that what they are doing isn’t appreciated and isn’t doing much good. The manpower shortage is at a crisis stage.
“The church is at risk – at serious risk – because it is losing its moorings in Bible knowledge and understanding. The time has come to recognize the risk and to develop a strategy for securing the future growth of the church through wise and knowing believers who are Bible authorities in their own right.”
He goes on to point out that encouraging people to attend, and even better, to teach the whole will of God should be a high priority because “our knowledge problem is about to destroy is and we must work fast. . . “
And this was written in April 1991. WHAT ABOUT TODAY? Tommy