Christian Living

by Ronald W Robey
(written December 12, 2018)
Stewardship is important in the life of a Christian.
God gives us the ability to make money, and expects us to handle that money wisely. First and foremost, if we have bills, we should endeavor to pay those bills prior to doing anything else with the money. The borrower is a servant to the lender. Get those bills out of the way.
From the money left after bills are paid, family needs should be taken care of; i.e food, clothing, medical, etc. If any provide not for his own he is worse than an infidel.
It is good to give to the local church body one attends or is a member of. However, it is better to give directly to those in the body who have needs rather than just drop the money in a collection plate as it passes under our noses on Sunday mornings. Ofttimes, money is collected for the needs of the church facilities while the body inside is in need of the money more. The righteous considereth the cause of the poor: but the wicked regardeth not to know it.
When money was laid at the feet of the apostles in the early stages of church history, the money was distributed to those who lacked. It was not used to pad the pockets of the apostles. Nor was it used to build bigger buildings.. If you enter the building and see Brother Sam and know that he has been laid off of work and has need of groceries or medicine, or even rent and utility money, God will be more pleased with you if you take that money you were going to drop in the collection plate and give it to Brother Sam than if you had dropped it in the collection plate.

The fact is, if every person who drinks ‘a glass of wine” were to be completely honest, they would admit that the very first glass of wine they ever drank made them drunk to some degree; whether just light–headed, nauseous, or full blown-out falling down drunk.

Alcohol is called an intoxicant for a reason….because it intoxicates.

Now, here’s the thing…

It has been proven in the medical field that beverage alcohol kills brain cells. So, maybe that’s why the “one glass of wine won’t hurt” proponents don’t realize the one glass of wine has intoxicated them…it’s killed the cells that tell their mind that they are drunk.

Proverbs 20:1 Wine is a mocker, strong drink is raging: and whosoever is deceived thereby is not wise.

Proverbs 23:31 Look not thou upon the wine when it is red, when it giveth his colour in the cup, when it moveth itself aright.
Proverbs 23:32 At the last it biteth like a serpent, and stingeth like an adder.

Community Encouragement
by Ronald W Robey
(written November 12, 2018)
Hebrews 10:25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
The assembling together was never for the sole purpose of the congregation hearing a pastor preach a sermon each week and then everyone going home until the next assembling together. The assembling together was for the purpose of BELIEVERS exhorting (rallying; encouraging) one another in the things of God..
This is not to say that the Spirit of God can’t move someone to deliver a sermon…He certainly can. However, according to Hebrews 10:25 the intent for assembling together is for community participation in the practice of encouraging one another.
The Proper Attitude of Giving
by Ronald W Robey
(written October 19, 2018)
The proper attitude of giving can be seen in Acts 4:32-37…
Acts 4:32 And the multitude of them that believed were of one heart and of one soul: neither said any of them that ought of the things which he possessed was his own; but they had all things common.
Acts 4:33 And with great power gave the apostles witness of the resurrection of the Lord Jesus: and great grace was upon them all.
Acts 4:34 Neither was there any among them that lacked: for as many as were possessors of lands or houses sold them, and brought the prices of the things that were sold,
Acts 4:35 And laid them down at the apostles’ feet: and distribution was made unto every man according as he had need.
Acts 4:36 And Joses, who by the apostles was surnamed Barnabas, (which is, being interpreted, The son of consolation,) a Levite, and of the country of Cyprus,
Acts 4:37 Having land, sold it, and brought the money, and laid it at the apostles’ feet.
Notice that the community of Believers who had land and property did not hear a sermon telling them they must sell their lands and properties. Nor were they told they must give of their money to the newly converted Believers in Christ Jesus.
No…they saw a need and voluntarily sold land and property to help meet that need. No dictated percentage. No coercion from the apostles. No guilt or fear tactics employed whatsoever.
When one allows the Spirit of God to rule one’s heart, he will give simply out of love for those who lack; wanting to see those who lack or are in poverty to thrive.
The apostle Paul encouraged the faithful brethren at Corinth to have that same attitude in their giving, when he wrote:
2 Corinthians 9:6 But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully.
2 Corinthians 9:7 Every man according as he purposeth in his heart, so let him give; not grudgingly, or of necessity: for God loveth a cheerful giver.
Give Alms
by Ronald W Robey
Luke 12:33 Sell that ye have, and give alms; provide yourselves bags which wax not old, a treasure in the heavens that faileth not, where no thief approacheth, neither moth corrupteth.
Giving alms to the poor is what stores up treasure in Heaven…not giving a tenth of ones’ money to a religious institution.
And what, you may ask, are ‘alms’? The apostle Peter tells us what alms are…
Acts 3:1-6 Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour. And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms of them that entered into the temple; Who seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple asked an alms. And Peter, fastening his eyes upon him with John, said, Look on us. And he gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them. Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.
In Acts 3, the servant of Jesus Christ of Nazareth understood alms to be silver and gold…it was money. Otherwise, Peter would not have answered in the manner that he answered the man who was lame.
So, in the text of Luke 12:33 we find Jesus telling a rich man to sell his substance and to give the proceeds of the sale to the poor. The man was not told to take a tenth of the money to the religious institution he was a member of. No…he was to give the proceeds to the poor in his community.
God is more pleased when you give money to the poor than when you take it to a religious institution that has thousands of dollars in its bank account.
Proverbs 29:7 The righteous considereth the cause of the poor: but the wicked regardeth not to know it.

Perfection Effected by Scripture
by Ronald W Robey

2 Timothy 3:16-17 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.

All Scripture is profitable for doctrine. When information you have received contradicts Scripture, it is that information that needs doctrine…not Scripture.

All Scripture is profitable for reproof. When your lifestyle contradicts Scripture, it is your lifestyle that needs reproof…not Scripture.

All Scripture is profitable for correction. When your doctrine contradicts what is clearly written in Scripture, it is your doctrine that needs correction…not Scripture.

All Scripture is profitable for instruction in righteousness. When your idea of what is right contradicts Scripture, it is your idea of what is right that needs instruction…not Scripture.

You will never reach perfection as long as you are embracing and defending false doctrine.

The Self-Serving Church
by Ronald W Robey

Many received their paychecks today, and are sitting at their tables and desks and filling out their check for Sunday Morning’s “tithe” to their local assembly. Many may be doing so from their easy chair.

Many of these same people have heard a knock on their door this past week, or will hear one within the next several hours as the day progresses. Upon answering the door, they find it is a neighbor in need; maybe of a couple eggs, or a cup of sugar, a stick of butter, or some other food item… which you may gladly give if you have it.

But pause and think for a moment? Is the item asked for the only need my neighbor may have? Two eggs will not go very far, especially if there is more than one person in the household of that neighbor. A cup of flour will be spent fairly easy as well.

Matthew 25:41 (KJV) Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
Matthew 25:42 (KJV) For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink:
Matthew 25:43 (KJV) I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not.
Matthew 25:44 (KJV) Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee?
Matthew 25:45 (KJV) Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me.
Matthew 25:46 (KJV) And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.

1 John 3:17 (KJV) But whoso hath this world’s good, and seeth his brother have need, and shutteth up his bowels of compassion from him, how dwelleth the love of God in him?

If there is a need for butter, for milk, for eggs, then chances are there is a much greater need for groceries. Consider taking your neighbor to the store, or going to the store by yourself, and purchasing groceries for your neighbor… using that check you were going to give to the local assembly tomorrow.

Matthew 25:34 (KJV) Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
Matthew 25:35 (KJV) For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
Matthew 25:36 (KJV) Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
Matthew 25:37 (KJV) Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?
Matthew 25:38 (KJV) When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?
Matthew 25:39 (KJV) Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?
Matthew 25:40 (KJV) And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

The Church today has lost its focus. They have become self-centered and self-serving, neglecting the poor and needy of the community that they are supposed to be a light of truth and compassion in.

“Give God’s tithe to a person that doesn’t even attend my Church? How preposterous!” Suppose God had the same attitude toward us when we were lost and without God? “Give my Son for a people that don’t even know me? How preposterous!”

Brethren, let us stop this foolishness of thinking we please God by giving a tenth of our money to our local assembly, when we can’t even bring ourselves to show compassion and concern for those around us.

Yes, give your check that you wrote out as tithe to that person in need. Apart from the fact that God’s tithe in the Bible was never of one’s monetary income, in giving it to your neighbor in need, you are giving it to God. Moreso than if you were to drop it into a collection plate in that four-walled brick and mortar edifice that you so lovingly call “church.”

Proverbs 19:17 He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the LORD; and that which he hath given will he pay him again.

Proverbs 29:7 The righteous considereth the cause of the poor: but the wicked regardeth not to know it.

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