The dry bones represented the Israelites themselves. As a people they had lost heart, lost hope, and said, “Our strength is dried, and our hope is lost, we are cut off from our parts”—from all tribal and national union. If they looked at their present condition, they were strangers in a strange land, foreigners, without opportunity for patriotic feelings; if they looked backward, and remembered divine intervention on their beha
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Many do not generally grasp the full import of immersion, and look at the water rather than the death which it symbolizes. The real baptism is that which cannot be seen, except in its influence upon the conduct; and the real church which is joined is the church whose names are written in heaven whose members cannot be known positively until the close of this age, when they shall be glorified with the Head.
That which has come down to man as fables usually has some basis of truth—perhaps 95 percent fable (or error) and 5 percent truth. Accordingly, we will present some lessons that parallel, to a slight degree, the lessons of true Christmas, that is, the spirit of Christmas as planned by the Heavenly Father.
It seems inevitable that no two people think alike and that holds true for the Christian as well (unless you are in a cult and have to see everything the same way). So what do we do when someone doesn’t see things quite the same was that we do? This booklet follows the Christian through the thoughts and prayers that need to be made to make the best decisions. This booklet also gives practical examples. We must all be careful not to give reproach on the name of our Lord by our conduct, so we need to make sure we handle these differences as He would have us do!
Still more remarkable is the fact that the doctrines promulgated in his name by his followers lay stress upon the fact that his crucifixion was a part of the divine program; more than this, that his crucifixion was necessary; that by the blood of the cross, by the death of the crucified One, atonement is effected for the sins of the Church and of the world
We have found that it was often by bringing us into severe trials, ordeals, putting us under crucial tests, that the Lord develops more and more our faith, our love, our trust, our hope in Him. He would have us learn well our lesson, that without Him we can do nothing, but that with His blessing and favor all things are ours, because we are Christ’s and Christ is God’s. Let us, then, in all the important junctures of life, be sure that we are seeking chiefly the divine will, as expressed in the divine promise, the Oath-Bound Covenant: let us seek it patiently, earnestly, persistently—let us wrestle with the Lord that thereby we may be made the stronger, that when the proper and advantageous experiences have been enjoyed the blessing will come—at the proper moment to do us the most good and in the manner that would be most helpful.
The Psalm which constitutes our lesson is supposed to have been composed by the Prophet after his heart had returned to peace with God through assurance of divine forgiveness of his sins. Its opening sentence takes this standpoint. David was the blessed man who had experienced divine forgiveness and covering of his transgression, his sin. He was the man to whom the Lord no longer imputed iniquity and in whose heart was no deception, no secret longing for sin, with merely the restraints of fear, but who had a heart and mind fully turned away from sin and in absolute accord with divine justice and all of its righteous requirements.
Christians should not fear these troublous times, but rather rejoice that God’s kingdom is nigh, and if found faithful, the Christian will have a place in Jesus’ throne. It is hard for the Christian to rejoice if he is not properly prepared and armed. Readiness is a sign of commitment and if we are ready to honor our commitment of sacrifice to the glory of God, then God promises to keep and protect us – not our natural bodies but rather the holy Spirit that dwells within our new creature. Commitment that is unprepared to sacrifice is merely compromise in disguise. Compromise takes a steady toll and weakens our desire and ability to be committed.
This message, “Come out of her, my people,” is not to those who are still blind in Babylon; hence it is not the first message to be given out at the present time. The light, the truth, the divine plan of the ages, is to be let shine; the errors of Babylon on various points are to be shown, and how these are dishonoring to God: then it is that the voice of the truth, the voice of these facts, will cry aloud to all who are truly the Lord’s sheep, to separate themselves from such misrepresentation of the divine character and plan, in heart, in person, in purse.
ONE of the most inspiring psalms David wrote is Psalm 23, the Shepherd Psalm. There is something so comforting and reassuring about this psalm that even those who do not understand it, find, in times of danger and stress, just reading it soothes their troubled hearts and restores their courage. Although composed of the simplest words—”shepherd words”—it has a sublime quality, exalting the soul and creating a spirit of calmness, security and peace.