Index by Subject

Legends of the Churches of Christ

Even casual discussions with friends and loved ones who are outside of the churches of Christ can reveal a very strange mythology that has developed around them.

They are sometimes mischaracterized, maligned, and ostracized on the basis of misunderstood or poorly explained practices. Not all the criticisms, of course, are unfair or false, even if the scriptural basis for the differences among us goes unexplored. It is the mythology about churches of Christ that concerns us now, the kind of thing one hears about them from those operating according to ignorance or malice. Continue reading » Legends of the Churches of Christ

In Reference to Modest Dress, Are We Binding The Old Testament?

There are occasions when in the study of morality and in particular the issue of modest dress, that we will consider definitions and examples in the Old Testament to further clarify our understanding of what God requires.  When this is done, there sometimes is an element of backlash and an accusation that we are “binding the Old Testament.”   In fact on one occasion a well known gospel preacher made the statement on the issue as he discussed modest dress in a sermon that he was “not one of these popes who takes it upon himself to bind the Old Testament on people in the matter.”   While this sentiment seems a bit harsh and over stated, the basic premise should be considered as we “prove all things, [and] hold fast to that which is good” (1 Thessalonians 5:21).   Are we binding the Old Testament when we define such terms as “nakedness” from its pages?   Let us consider the scriptures on the subject.

Continue reading » In Reference to Modest Dress, Are We Binding The Old Testament?

The Holy Spirit in the Old Testament

Some believe that God the Father was at work during the time of the Old Testament, that God the Son was active only during the time that He was upon the earth, and that God the Spirit is now active during the Gospel dispensation. The Scriptures reveal that all three members of the Godhead have been active in every dispensation.

We should not make the mistake that the Holy Spirit did not begin to work until the time of the New Testament. Although His role may be more prominent in the New Testament, any Bible student can see that the Holy Spirit was active during the time of the Old Testament. This article will examine the work that the Holy Spirit performed in the Old Testament.

Continue reading » The Holy Spirit in the Old Testament

The Law Code of Hammurabi

One of the grandest facts about the ongoing findings of archaeology is that it never fails to produce unique and interesting finds that open up new proofs for conclusions previously unknown. One such find was the law code of Hammurabi. Hammurabi was the sixth king in the Babylonian dynasty and ruled from approximately 1792 to 1750 B.C. He was a great military leader, enlarging Babylon from a small city-state into a vast world empire, covering all the land from the Tigris to the Euphrates. However, Hammurabi is best known for his extensive list of law codes. Scholars date the code c. 1780 B.C. The stele on which the code was written was discovered by an Egyptologist named Gustav Jequier in 1901. The find was located in modern-day Iran, near the ancient Babylonian city of Susa.

The law code consists of an introduction stating that Hammurabi was chosen by the gods to record the code, followed by 282 statements of law, and concluded with an epilogue. What is unique about this code is that unlike other ancient findings, it is completely intact.

Continue reading » The Law Code of Hammurabi

Old Testament Law (The Law Given for Israel’s Good)

The Law of the Lord is Good!

While the Israelites were assembled at Mount Sinai (Ex. 19:1) God delivered through Moses the Ten Commandments (Ex. 20:1f). Moses was the Lawgiver. He received the Law from God and delivered it to the children of Israel. Even before the words of the Law had been put down in writing the Jews promised Moses, “All the words which the LORD has said we will do.” (Ex. 24:3). In the second giving of the Law, Moses clearly states that the covenant was not made with the Gentiles or even with the Israelites’ forefathers, but only with the nation of Israel whom God had led out of Egyptian bondage.

“And Moses called all Israel, and said to them: ‘Hear, O Israel, the statutes and judgments which I speak in your hearing today, that you may learn them and be careful to observe them. The LORD our God made a covenant with us in Horeb. The LORD did not make this covenant with our fathers, but with us, those who are here today, all of us who are alive” (Deut. 5:1-3).

The Old Testament law was given to a specific group of people, the Jews and was never said to have been given to anyone else. The Law was never designed for Gentiles or even Christians. Where is the Scripture that shows this covenant was made with anyone else? Continue reading » Old Testament Law (The Law Given for Israel’s Good)

Confusion on the Covenants: Is the Old Testament Still Binding?

Much error has been taught in the denominational world due to their failure to “rightly divide the word of truth” (2 Tim. 2:15). They see little need in distinguishing between the old and new Covenants. They are as likely to go to the Old Covenant for authority as to the new.

Churches of Christ have faithfully taught that we must rightly divide the old from the new and that we are to follow the new and not the Old Covenant. We have correctly taught that the New Covenant is our guide and authority. We learn from the Old Covenant (Rom. 15:4,) but it is not our guide and authority. We have taught this because the Bible clearly teaches it.

There are several reasons why this is so. Continue reading » Confusion on the Covenants: Is the Old Testament Still Binding?