Baptism and Reception
This department is provided for the free and courteous discussion of biblical and spiritual problems which may be considered edifying to the people of God. Letters concerning matters are requested.
Dear Brother G.
Would you please insert the following in Food for the Flock? I enjoy reading it each month and find the ministry very helpful and instructive.
In our Family Bible Hour services we are getting a good number of the unsaved in, but why do so many of our preachers give a ministry message for Christians? Since this is the most favourable time for a gospel service, and since this was the original object of the Family Bible Hour, why withhold this from them? We are constantly praying for the salvation of souls, yet when we bring an unconverted friend, it is discouraging that the necessity and the way of salvation are not made plain. If it is asserted that we need ministry, and we do, may I suggest that it be given at the evening service when nearly all present are Christians.
Trusting that all concerned may be exercised about this matter before the Lord.
The coming of the Lord draweth nigh.
In this regard it is well to remember the commendation given by Paul to the church of the Thessalonians: “So that ye were ensamples to all that believe in Macedonia and Achaia. For from you sounded out the Word of the Lord not only in Macedonia and Achaia, but also in every place your faith to God-ward is spread abroad; so that we need not to speak any thing.”
Dr. Campbell Morgan has an excellent comment on this passage: “From you hath sounded forth the Word of the Lord.” “Sounded forth”: that is, quite literally, echoed forth. Chrysostom said, “Sounded as a clear trumpet note.” “Sounded forth.” It is not that these people went everywhere preaching; but it is that these people, in their unity of life as a church, became an instrument through which the Word of the Lord was sounding forth. I would like to use another word than “sounded forth,” another word than echoed forth. I would like to use this word: “From you the Word of the Lord reverberated”; through the valleys and over the mountains, and away through Macedonia and Achaia, the Word of the Lord reverberated. The assembly at Thessalonica was like a transmitting station disseminating the news of salvation. In this they provide an illustration of what Paul wrote to the Philippians: “Be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world; holding forth the Word of Life” (Phil. 2:15-16).
May the churches of the saints everywhere be really exercised to follow this apostolic example of evangelistic zeal and activity.