Bulletin for Sunday 01/23/2011
With Robert Prater
We live in an age of skepticism and doubt. Nothing is “off limits” to scrutiny, examination and reevaluation. Long established traditions and beliefs are now all being questioned, even in the realm of religion.
A spirit of honest inquiry is a good thing. The philosopher Socrates said, “An unexamined life is not worth living.” In matters of our faith it may also well be said, “An unexamined faith is not worth having.” The Bible instructs us to “examine yourselves to see whether you are in the faith” (2 Corinthians 13:5). We are to “test the spirits to see whether they are from God” (1 John 4:1ff). Examining our beliefs to determine if they are substantiated in Scripture is a good and healthy practice.
However, the skeptical spirit of our age declares that it is impossible to ever arrive at absolute truth. It is popularly believed in our postmodern world that absolute truth is a myth. Therefore someone who displays certainty in their beliefs is viewed as arrogant and narrow-minded. Such could not be farther from reality.
It is true that some people have had arrogant, “know-it-all” attitudes in regard to their religious beliefs. Such is unfortunate and has done considerable damage to the very truth that such individuals claim to stand for. Pridefulness is not the same as being confident and certain in your beliefs. Scripture teaches us to “contend for the faith” (Jude 3) but to do so in a spirit of love and compassion for our fellow man (Eph. 4:15). The servant of Christ must always be “gentle” and “kind” when standing for the truth and must never be “quarrelsome” even with those who oppose the truth (2 Tim. 2:24-26). There is a delicate balance between being gentle and respectful of others while being firm and unwavering in your convictions (1 Peter 3:15).
Jesus teaches us that we can “know the truth” but only when we “abide in the word” (John 8:31-32). Our convictions must be firmly grounded in clear statements of Scripture. I can feel strongly about something, but if it is not clearly taught in Scripture it is a matter of my personal opinion and should not be forced upon others. I can know what is true when I “abide in the word” and discover God’s clearly stated truths. Once these truths have been verified by Scripture, I can “know” them with certainty and with conviction stand by them. Once these truths have been verified there is no need to doubt them.
Yet, I must always humbly admit that there may be additional information in Scripture that I may have missed that completes the picture. I must be open-minded enough to “tweak” my personal convictions based upon the total evidence discovered from Scripture. I must allow the truth of Scripture to challenge my preconceived ideas, biases, and traditions.
But when I come to “know” truth, I should never be hesitant to firmly, but lovingly, proclaim it without timidity. The young preacher Timothy was tempted (likely because of his youthfulness) to be timid in proclaiming the truth of God. Paul told him, “…I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God…for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control” (2 Timothy 1:6-7).
As Christians we should have “certitude” when it comes to the known truth of God. Certitude is a confident attitude of sureness. But we must always remember that certitude in your faith must not be confused with religious pridefulness.
Sermons for Sunday:
AM The Family Under Attack
PM The Lord’s Prayer
We extend our sympathy to Geri Outlaw and Barbara Vanlandingham in the loss of their sister-in-law and aunt, Christine Meyer. Funeral services were conducted this past Friday afternoon at Resthaven Funeral Chapel.
We also extend our sympathy to Judy Finch in the loss of her husband, Earl, who passed away on Wednesday of last week. Services were held on Saturday afternoon at Resthaven.
Thank you for the prayers, calls, cards, words of comfort and acts of kindness, in this difficult time of loss of my sister-in-law and Barbara and Burl’s aunt Christine Meyer. Again, thank you so much. In Christian Love, Geraldine Outlaw, and Burl & Barbara Vanlandingham
We would like to thank you for ALL THE PRAYERS, VISITS, CALLS, EMAILS during this time. We so appreciate you opening your arms with unconditional love to our family. We thank you most of all for your prayers as that is where we are getting our strength. You are an AWESOME group of people and we are so fortunate that God led us to Central Church of Christ. May you all be blessed in a mighty way and your needs be met by the Lord. In His Love,
The family of George Pittser
To the best of our knowledge, we have no Central member in the hospital at the present time.
Bob Seikel spent some time at Oklahoma Heart Hospital last week undergoing tests.
Lois Lanier continues to be ill at home.
Carl Holt’s sister-in-law, Norma Holt of Wimberly, TX, was diagnosed with stage 3 malignant brain cancer. He requests your prayers for her that the best way possible will be chosen for her treatment.
Bill Lawerance’s cousin, Tammy June Buckner, has developed 2 blood clots in her lungs. Please keep her in your prayers.
It was so good to have Boyd Cheney and Betty Rye in services Sunday.
CONTINUING PRAYER CONCERNS
Ruth Autrey, Chad Beard, Fred Bowers, Harold Carothers, Blake Carter (great grandson of Sue Merritt), Chelsea Coleman (1 year old friend to Mykah Shelton), Juanita Combs, Harold Decker, Mike Fruech, (brother of Beverley MacMillan) Louise Honaker, Mariella Jacobs, Shawna Laffoon (Teresa Story’s daughter), Rita Luye (Jennifer Michener’s aunt), Nadine Magee, Vesta Mays, Aubrey McNutt, Carletta Moore, Thearlene Morris, Gene Norton, Scott Olivo (friend of Royce & Kathy Peerson), Rachel O’Neal, George Pittser, Polly Reese, Alice Rice, Sue Riedel, Carl Robbins (Dena Nipper’s dad), Frank Romberg, Curtis Rowe, Betty Rye, Larry & Sarah Smith, Dorothy Strickland, Marlene Wadkins, Pat West, (sister of Ruby Holt), Emma White, Iva Williams (Mother of Cathy Rose) and Jewel Wills. All these members and friends have continuing health concerns or other special circumstances. They appreciate your interest and prayers
January 29, Saturday, Youth Rally @ Moore Central, “Purity in Dating” with Phillip Johnson speaking. Van will leave at 8:30 a.m. return by 3:30 p.m.
I am the new year. I am an unspoiled page in your book of time.
I am your next chance at the art of living. I am your opportunity to practice what you have learned about life during the last 12 months.
All you sought and didn’t find is hidden in me, waiting for you to search it but with more determination.. All the good you tried for and didn’t achieve is mine to grant when you have fewer conflicting desires.
All you dreamed but didn’t dare to do, all you hoped but did not will, all the faith you claimed but did not have – these slumber lightly, waiting to be awakened by the touch of a strong purpose.
I am your opportunity to renew your allegiance to him who said, “See, I am making all things new” (Revelation 21:5, NRSV). –Author Unknown
January 23, Search: “Jesus Blesses Us”
January 30, Search: “Thy Will Be Done”
February 25-26, Affirming the Faith seminar hosted by OKC area churches of Christ held at N. MacArthur, www.affirmingthefaith.com
LAST WEEKS RECORD
Bible School 149
Worship Service 212
Sunday Evening 123
Wednesday Evening 104
SERVING THE CONGREGATION
Sunday, January 23, 2011
Announcements: Steve Kelly
Opening Prayer: Tim McGalliard
Song Director: Paul Harris
Scripture: Wade Baskin
Sermon: Robert Prater
Closing Prayer: Carl Weeks
SERVING AT THE LORD’S TABLE
Mitch Harmon Dale Beard
Clavin Norwood Jim Carpenter
AT THE BACK OF AUDITORIUM
Matt Stephens Nathan Kelly
Robert Perry Ron Taffe
Foyer: Robert & Ann Perry
Elevator: Ron & Debbie Taffe
ASSISTING OUTSIDE ELEVATOR DOOR
EVENING WORSHIP SERVICE
Opening Prayer: Jim Pettyjohn
Song Director: Paul Harris
Sermon: Robert Prater
Closing Prayer: Gene Norton
AT THE LORD’S TABLE
Richard Albright Jim Walling
WEDNESDAY NIGHT SERVICE
Classes for all ages
Song Director: Michael Michener
If unable to serve this week, notify
Frank Romberg – 273-1297