Instrumental Music in the New Testament

by William J. Stewart

We have in previous articles looked at instrumental music in the book of Revelation, and in the Old Testament. This week, we focus on the occurrences of instrumental music in the New Testament, from Matthew through Jude, investigate the manner of music to be used in New Testament worship. Continue reading

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Question from Nigeria about a Christian Married to an Unbeliever

Question

Good afternoon my preacher. I Worshipped today at … and I was shocked at the lesson taught by the preacher on marriage. Text: 1Cor 7:39. The summary of the lesson was: (1) Any Christian and not just widows who marry an unbeliever would be disfellowshiped. (2) He no longer is a Christian. I asked two questions in writing (1) If a christian marries an unbeliever and he is disfellowshiped, what would be his fruit of repentance for him to be restored? (2) If the unbelieving wife of this brother wants to be a Christian and request baptism, would she be baptized? His answer: (1) He needs to do away with the wife before he is restored and (2) The unbelieving wife cannot be baptized. Brother for me this is serious because it seems to be a well established practice among them. Any material on this will help. Thanks. Continue reading

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Question from Sri Lanka about John 5:25

Question

John 5:25 – Verily, verily, I say unto you, The hour is coming, and now is, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God: and they that hear shall live.

Is that true, all dead people will live in the future?
What is the deep meaning of ‘the hour is coming’ ? Continue reading

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Question from Samoa about Jesus Coming in His Kingdom

Question

Just wondering if you can comment on these two verses. One says Jesus is coming in His kingdom, and the other the kingdom coming with power (Matthew 16:28 and Mark 9:1). Continue reading

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What Is The Kingdom Of God?

by Keith Sharp

No Bible subject is more important than the kingdom of God. The word “kingdom” is found 236 times in the Bible. The substance of the preaching of both John the Baptist and Jesus was “the kingdom of God” (Matthew 3:1-2; 4:17). Righteous Israelites in the days of John and Jesus were looking for the kingdom (Mark 15:43). But, because they misunderstood its nature, the Jewish leaders were shut out of the kingdom of God (Matthew 23:13). What is the kingdom of God? Continue reading

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Ministering to Needy Brethren : The Sheep and the Goats

by Keith Sharp | Parables of the Master  | Matthew 25:31-46

In Matthew 25:1-30 the Master taught two parables, the Ten Virgins (verses 1-13) and the Talents (verses 14-30), to teach His disciples to be ready for His return. Now, two days before His ultimate humiliation (Matthew 26:1-2), He teaches a lesson, also primarily for the benefit of His disciples, about the time when He returns in glory (Philippians 2:9-11) and sits upon His glorious throne, the throne of judgment (Matthew 25:31).

This is not strictly a parable, but, as virtually all of the Lord’s teaching, it does contain figurative language. “It is more a poetic description of the prophecy Jesus had spoken earlier that year at Caesarea Philippi (Matt. 16.27)” (Earnhart. 191). Continue reading

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Faithful Service : Parable of the Talents

by Keith Sharp | The Parables of the Master | Matthew 24:14-30

The word “For,” with which this parable begins, connects it to the preceding story, the Parable of the Ten Virgins. That parable teaches us to keep watching to be ready for the Lord’s return; this, the Parable of the Talents, teaches us to work to be ready for His return.

…the Parable of the Talents serves as a perfect complement to the Parable of the Ten Virgins. In the preceding story the maidens are pictured as waiting for their lord, in this story, the servants are represented as working for their lord. One stresses the duty of constant alertness, the other the duty of faithful service” (Lightfoot. 172).

Continue reading

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Instrumental Music in the Old Testament

by William J. Stewart

In the search for instrumental music in the Old Testament, one need not go very far. In Genesis 4:21, among the offspring of Cain, we read of Jubal, who is identified as “…the father of all those who play the harp and flute.” Thus, we have the beginning of instrumental music described for us. From this point onward, we find reference to instruments of music in numerous Old Testament passages. These instruments were used for a variety of reasons: calling an assembly together (Numbers 10:1ff), commands in battle (Joshua 6:4), worship of false gods (Daniel 3:5), entertainment or celebration (Genesis 31:27), to give honour to the king (1 Kings 1:34), as a calming agent (1 Samuel 16:23), and in the worship of the God of heaven (Psalm 150). Continue reading

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The Divine Plan of the Ages

Present Truth
“For this reason I will not be negligent to remind you always of these things, though you know and are established in the present truth” (2 peter 1:12).

by Keith Sharp

On July 20, 1969, Neil A. Armstrong, American astronaut, became the first human to set foot on the moon. The plan devised by scientists at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration to get him there was truly remarkable for its technical complexity and accuracy and is indeed a monument to the skill of American technology. Yet, the plan that God devised for the salvation of mankind is as much higher in grandeur than the program devised by NASA, or any other human scheme, “as the heavens are higher than the earth” (Isaiah 55:8-9). What is God’s plan of salvation? Continue reading

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Righteous versus the Ungodly

by Keith Sharp

Psalm 1

  1. Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful;
  2. But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night.
  3. He shall be like a tree Planted by the rivers of water, That brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also shall not wither; And whatever he does shall prosper.
  4. The ungodly are not so, But are like the chaff which the wind drives away.
  5. Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, Nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
  6. For the LORD knows the way of the righteous, But the way of the ungodly shall perish.

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