Welcome to the footnote¹ blog. Our goal each day is to examine a verse and give a short summary in commentary form or simply an encouraging note to help you remain faithful to God throughout the week. Either way we hope that the footnote¹ blog will comfort you through God's word and give you a better understanding of His will.
“…for this is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.” (Matt. 26.28, ESV)
In instituting the Lord’s Supper, Jesus told His disciples to divide amongst themselves the fruit of the vine which represented His blood which He shed on the cross for our sins. At this point, He had not yet voluntarily poured out His blood, but He explained to them that His blood would be “of the covenant” and “for the forgiveness of sins.”
By “of the covenant,” Jesus meant that His blood would enact the New Testament, or New Covenant, as the Old Covenant was to be done away with at the cross (Col. 2.14; Eph. 2.14-16, etc.). Therefore, we are to live in obedience to the covenant of Christ (His law) and no longer submit to the Law of Moses.
By “for the forgiveness of sins,” Jesus meant that His blood would be the cleansing power necessary to wash away our sins (cf. Rev. 1.5; 1 Peter 1.2, 18-19, etc.) and to purchase the church (Acts 20.28).
When do we have our sins washed away? Peter preached, “Repent and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins…” (Acts 2.38). Notice how baptism accomplishes exactly what Jesus’ blood would accomplish – forgiveness of sins. Consequently, when we are baptized into Christ (Rom. 6.3-4; Gal. 2.26-27; Eph. 5.26-27), we are washed in His cleansing blood. Ananias told Saul, “And now why do you wait? Rise and be baptized and wash away your sins, calling on his name.” (Acts 22.16)
While all men are accountable to the new covenant, not all men will experience forgiveness of sins. That is because the promise of forgiveness of sins is only found in obedience to the new covenant.
“And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Matthew 10.28, ESV)
This author truly understands the fear created by evildoers and criminals, and more specifically, terrorism. Fortunately, the Holy Spirit has given us comfort through His word. In Matthew 10.28, Jesus reminds us that we should not fear those who can kill the body. Why? Simply put, because they cannot kill the soul. It is comforting to know that no matter what happens to us in this life – up to and including death – our soul cannot be affected. Therefore, what is there to fear from man?
In fact, God has promised, “‘…I will never leave you nor forsake you.’ So we can confidently say, ‘The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?’” (Heb. 13.5-6). Elsewhere, the Holy Spirit said, “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? As it is written, ‘For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.’ No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Rom. 8.35-39) Once again, the faithful have nothing to fear because the faithless can do nothing to our soul.
Whom, then, shall we fear? Jesus said, “…fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell.” If we live for unrighteousness here and now, we will experience true fear on the day of judgment. However, if we live for righteousness, there is nothing to fear. John taught, “Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him. By this is love perfected with us, so that we may have confidence for the day of judgment, because as he is so also are we in this world. There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear. For fear has to do with punishment, and whoever fears has not been perfected in love” (1 John 4.15-18).
Whom do you fear? If you’re a faithful Christian you have nothing to fear – whether you are facing an earthly threat or the judgment seat of Christ.
“And I say to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another, commits adultery; and whoever marries her who is divorced commits adultery.” (Matt. 19.9, NKJV)
Understanding who has the right to be married is not necessarily difficult. Oftentimes, our emotions and desires come into play. In other words, we desire to be married when God says we do not necessarily have that right. It is important that before we decide to marry that we look to God’s will on the matter. Likewise, when there are issues within the marriage we must look to God’s word instead of seeking a divorce lawyer.
Below are those who are eligible for a scriptural marriage. These four categories are taught in Matt. 19; Rom. 7; 1 Cor. 7, etc.
1. Those who have never been married.
2. Those whose spouses [or previous spouses] have died.
3. Those who put their previous spouses away for sexual immorality.
4. Those who are reconciling after a divorce.
If you are remarried but have not fallen into one of these four categories, your marriage is unscriptural and you are committing adultery. The Bible says there is hope for those who are willing to turn away from sin, including adultery (1 Cor. 6.9-11). Can we help you learn more about God’s will concerning marriage, divorce, and remarriage? Contact Bryan Garlock | Message us on Facebook | Call/text: 903.308.4905
“Judge not, that you be not judged.” (Matthew 7.1, ESV)¹
¹Too often people stop with verse one of Matthew chapter seven. It is as if they do not know that verses 2-6 even exist. Jesus’ point is that if we are going to judge someone, we must make sure the log has been taken out of our eye before focusing on the speck in our brother’s eye. That is how we judge with righteous judging (John 7.24). Additionally, God’s word has already made the judgments. Those who teach sinners to obey Jesus are simply restating what God has already stated in His word and has authorization to do so (Mark 16.15; Matt. 28.19; etc.).
Below are some ways people use Matthew 7.1 along with the translation.
- "Only God can judge me" translation "leave me alone so I can sin".
- "You don't know my heart" translation "leave me alone so I can sin."
- "We all sin" translation "leave me alone so I can sin."
- "God knows my heart" translation "leave me alone so I can sin."
- "Don't push your religion on me" translation "leave me alone so I can sin."
- "I thought Jesus said, 'Don't judge'" translation "leave me alone so I can sin."
- "Don't cast stones" translation "leave me alone so I can sin."
- "You are judging" translation "leave me alone so I can sin."
- "God is love" translation "leave me alone so I can sin."
- "That's your interpretation" translation "leave me alone so I can sin."
- "Why do you care?" translation "leave me alone so I can sin."
- "No one likes a Bible thumper" translation "leave me alone so I can sin."
- "Don't talk to me about religion" translation "leave me alone so I can sin."
- "You have a holier than thou attitude" translation "leave me alone so I can sin."
What’s your excuse to continue in sin? If you want to be left alone so you can continue in sin, then God will leave you alone after the judgment.
If you’re interested in learning more about God’s will, we would be more than happy to help you. Our goal is to live righteous lives so that we can properly help you overcome sin in your life too. E-mail Bryan Garlock, message us on Facebook, or text 903.308.4905 to study with us!
“And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.” (Matthew 16.18, NKJV).¹
¹I once heard a preacher ask, “If you had to write a ten-page paper about the church you are a member of, could you use only the Bible or would you have to use outside sources?”
The truth is, many churches would have to use outside sources because many of their doctrines, beliefs, practices, and even their names cannot be found within the pages of the Bible.
Jesus said, "Upon this rock I will build My church…" (Matthew 16.18). This is the church that began in Acts chapter two in Jerusalem. Following the baptism of the first converts to Christ, Luke records, "…And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved." (Acts 2.41-47). Further, scripture refers to the church, the saved, as His body (Colossians 1.18). Since there is only one body (Eph. 4.4), there is only one church. Scripture mentions no other.
In the New Testament, groups of believers who lived in the same area joined their efforts and resources to form local congregations, also called "churches" (Galatians 1.2). The apostle Paul called these groups "churches of Christ" in Romans 16.16.
Jesus established the church, not men. It is His. Therefore, it wears His name.* He is the purchaser (Acts 20.28), founder (Matthew 16.18), head (Eph. 1.22-23; Eph. 5.23) and Savior of His body (Ephesians 5.23). Since churches in the New Testament are called churches of Christ, and since we strive to be nothing more than a New Testament church, at Franklin Drive we call ourselves after the pattern of the scriptures (2 Tim. 1.13), the church of Christ.
We are confident that we can be a church that you can read about in the Bible. We are simply a local group of Christians (Acts 11.26), seeking to serve God based on the teachings revealed in His word. We are not affiliated with any denomination or cult, but are an independent body of Christians acknowledging Christ as the only head of the church (Eph. 1.22-23; Eph. 5.23). BG
*Questions for you to consider:
- If we cannot read about denominations (baptist, methodist, catholic, lutheran, etc.) in Scripture, why do they exist?
- Why not call ourselves after our Savior? As individuals, Christians, and as a local church, the church of Christ?
- If you're a member of a church you cannot read about in Scripture, why do you support it?
- If you had to write a ten-page paper about the church you are a member of, could you use only the Bible or would you have to use outside sources?
We pray you'll consider these questions. We would love to hear your answers. Contact us today!