THE STRASBURG CHURCH OF CHRIST
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Minister - Pete Stone
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THESE ARE THE TIMES THAT TRY MEN'S SOULS
The Greek Peter uses in 1 Peter 3:7 is important. It means "To be of sound mind; to be in one's right mind; to exercise self control," according to Thayer. Merriam-Webster defines the English word, sober, "not addicted to intoxicating drink; not drunk." We should never become drunk or addicted to anything that inhibits our relationship with God. Peter writes in 1 Peter 2:11, "Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." Peter says "abstain." Abstain from what? fleshly lusts. Why? because they war against the soul.
Peter is saying that we as people living in uncertain times are to stay away from all and any kind of inebriation, drunkenness - anything that would keep us from exercising proper judgment and self-control - be it alcohol sensual enticements, websites videos, books, magazines, etc, materialism, intellectualism, whatever.
We ought to be free from every form of, mental, physical emotional, spiritual, intoxication. We are to be a self-controlled single-minded people. 1 Peter 5:8 tells us why we must be self-controlled: "Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour." Do you know what happens when you disconnect tomorrow from today? It brings you to your knees in prayer. When we can't see… Tomorrow, we become anxious. We get upset. The closer we get to the end of life, the more important prayer becomes.
Luke writes, "And he spake a parable unto them to this end, that men ought always to pray, and not to faint." Jesus taught persistence prayer. He said, “Pray always.” He said in Luke 21:36, "Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man" (Luke 21:36).
Paul says, “Pray on all occasions.” He writes in Ephesians 6:18, "Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints." He says, “Be constant in prayer.” He writes in Rom 12:12, "Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer."
James says, "If you are in trouble pray. He writes in James 5:13, "Is any among you afflicted? let him pray." He continues, "If you are sick or committed sins pray. "He writes in James 5:14-15:
Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord: And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.
Paul writes in 1 Thessalonians 5:17, “Pray without ceasing.” The Books of First & Second Thessalonians were written to correct the Thessalonians' theology of the Second Coming. He says, “Jesus is coming, pray without ceasing!" why? Because the end could come at any moment!!
For all who live in uncertain times, prayer is a must.
Maintain a Fervent Love of the Brethren
God created us for relationships Peter writes in 1 Peter 1:22:
Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently.
(Continued on page 5).
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