"Sound Doctrine" - (Titus 2:1)

The Unchanging Christ

Hays Brickell

"Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever" (Hebrews 13:8).

A common saying is that nothing is as permanent as change. We live in a constant world of change. Technology, government legislation, fashion, economic conditions, physical well-being, and many other things are in a state of flux about us. To what or whom can man look to escape the uncertainties of life, such as America's current financial situation? As the Hebrew writer states, Jesus Christ is the one constant to whom anyone can turn.

We know that by yesterday Jesus is eternal. Talking to the Jews, Jesus states the following, "Truly, truly I say to you, before Abraham was born, I AM" (John 8:58). We know that Jesus, with God the Father and the Holy Spirit, is Creator. "All things have been created through Him and for Him" (Colossians 1:16). Lastly, "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God" (John 1:1).

We know that Jesus is with us today. He comforted His disciples, as He can comfort us, with the following: "And lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age" (Matthew 28:20). Also, in the Sermon on the Mount: "But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own" (Matthew 6:33-34).

We know that Jesus is coming back in the future, some tomorrow if not today, the same as He has always been. Again, comforting His disciples: "If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also" (John 14:3). And, "I will see you again, and your heart will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you" (John 16:22). These promises Jesus made to His disciples almost 2,000 years ago can just as much be trusted by us today, the promise of eternal life.

Regardless of any change that may come our way, Jesus can help us overcome any trial of the world. Here is another example of Jesus' comforting His disciples: "These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage, I have overcome the world" (John 16:33). Also, "And who of you by being worried can add a single hour to his life?" (John 6:27). Recently, articles have been written on how to "cope with worry" over the economic situation. Suggestions such as exercise, taking up a new hobby, family activities, meditation, etc. are offered as remedies. While some of this might be of personal benefit, the best advice is to simply heed Jesus' words and avoid worry in the first place.

In conclusion, change, for good or ill, will always be coming our way and can be put in the proper perspective if we remember that "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever".

"A Beautiful Child"

Bryan Matthew Dockens

I claim the distinction of being father to the world's most beautiful children. I almost feel sorry for the parents of other kids. And, of course, I am being perfectly objective about all this. You probably think your kids are the best looking, and while I naturally take exception, the fact is you are correct. Every mother and father should look upon their sons and daughters as the finest in all creation.

Moses' parents did. "By faith Moses, when he was born, was hidden three months by his parents, because they saw he was a beautiful child; and they were not afraid of the king's command" (Hebrews 11:23). Pharaoh, king of Egypt, had "commanded all his people, saying, 'Every son who is born you shall cast into the river, and every daughter you shall save alive'" (Exodus 1:22). Stephen described the circumstances, saying, "This man dealt treacherously with our people, and oppressed our forefathers, making them expose their babies, so that they might not live" (Acts 7:19). Every passage relating the decision of these parents to spare this child from infanticide attributes their motive to his beauty (Exodus 2:2; Acts 7:20; Hebrews 11:23).

Rightly so. "God created man in His own image" (Genesis 1:27). "Then God blessed them, and God said to them, 'Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth'" (Genesis 1:28). "Then God saw everything that He had made, and indeed it was very good" (Genesis 1:31). The word translated "good" to describe God's impression of His creation (Genesis 1:31) is the same Hebrew word translated "beautiful" to describe Amram and Jochebed's impression of their newborn son (Exodus 2:2). Because God regarded the creation of humankind as beautiful, having created us in His own image, with instructions to reproduce, it is proper that all parents so regard their offspring.

Those who recognize the beauty of children will resist the temptation, chosen by forty-two million women per year, to do away with those yet unborn. The beauty of children not only denounces abortion, but it also demands attention to those children now living who deserve their parents' love (Titus 2:4), encouragement (Colossians 3:21), material support (Matthew 7:7-11; 1 Timothy 5:8), and instruction in godliness (Joshua 24:15; Deuteronomy 6:6-9; Ephesians 6:4).


Bryan Matthew Dockens

Christians are a called people. We are "called out of darkness into His marvelous light" (1 Peter 2:9), "called into the fellowship of His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord" (1 Corinthians 1:9), "called to liberty" (Galatians 5:13), and "called to peace" (1 Corinthians 7:15). We are "called children of God" (1 John 3:1), and "called saints" (Romans 1:7). We are called by "the upward call of God in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 3:14), "called with a holy calling" (1 Timothy 1:9), a "heavenly calling" (Hebrews 3:1). We are called by the gospel (2 Thessalonians 2:14).

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