David L. Odom
Yes, there IS a pattern from God for us to follow today!
II Timothy 1:13
"Hold the pattern of sound words which thou hast heard from me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus."
Did you know that God has given us all we need to do His will? His Word, the New Testament for us today is His pattern for us today.
II Peter 1:3
"seeing that His divine power has granted unto us everything pertaining to life and godliness, through the true knowledge of Him who called us by His own glory and excellence."
II Timothy 3:16, 17
"16 All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; 17 so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work."
God has always given man a pattern to follow!
"...'See', He says, that you make all things according to the pattern which was shown you on the mountain."
It is that form (pattern) of teaching we are to be obedient to!
Romans 6:17, 18
"17 But thanks be to God, that, whereas ye were servants of sin, ye became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching whereunto ye were delivered, 18 and being made free from sin, ye became servants of righteousness."
Notice the beginning of Romans 16, which is a part of the teaching we are to be obedient to!
"Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. 5 For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; 7 for he who has died is freed from sin."
Who has changed God's pattern?
Those who teach that baptism is NOT essential to salvation!
I Peter 3:20, 21
"20 who once were disobedient, when the patience of God kept waiting in the days of Noah, during the construction of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through the water. 21 Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you - not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience - through the resurrection of Jesus Christ..."
What happens to us if we go beyond God's Word?
2 John 9
"Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God; the one who abides in the teaching, he has both the Father and the Son."
I Corinthians 4:6
"...that in us ye might learn not to go beyond the things which are written..."
What did Jesus instruct the apostles to do?
"And Jesus came to them and spake unto them, saying, All authority hath been given unto Me in heaven and on earth. 19 Go ye therefore, and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit: teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I commanded you: and lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world."
Mark 16:15, 16
"And He said to them, 'Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. 16 He who has believed and has been baptized shall be saved; but he who has disbelieved shall be condemned.'"
Are you following the pattern from above?
Have you been baptized into Christ for the remission of your sins?
"And Peter said to them, 'Repent ye, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ unto the remission of your sins; and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.'"
Have you yet washed away your sins, calling on His Name?
"And now, why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name."
Have you yet purified your souls?
I Peter 1:22, 23
"22 Since you have in obedience to the truth purified your souls for a sincere love of the brethren, fervently love one another from the heart, 23 for you have been born again, not of seed which is perishable but imperishable, that is, through the living and enduring word of God."
Are you following the pattern of assembling with God's people and worshipping Him in spirit and in Truth?
John 4:23, 24
"23 But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshippers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshippers. 24 God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth."
Are you following the pattern of assembling together (going to church [assembly])
each and every Lord's day?
"On the first day of the week, when we were gathered together to break bread..."
"not forsaking our own assembling together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another; and all the more as you see the day drawing near."
Are you following the pattern of taking the Lord's Supper each and every Lord's day?
I Corinthians 11:23-29
"For I received from the Lord that which I also delivered to you, that the Lord Jesus in the night in which He was betrayed took bread; 24 and when He had given thanks, He broke it and said, 'This is My body, which is for you; do this in remembrance of Me.' 25 In the same way He took the cup also after supper, saying, 'This cup is the new covenant in My blood; do this, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.' 26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord's death until He comes. 27 Therefore whoever eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner, shall be guilty of the body and the blood of the Lord. 28 But a man must examine himself, and in so doing he is to eat of the bread and drink of the cup. 29 For he who eats and drinks, eats and drinks judgment to himself if he does not judge the body rightly."
The Lord's day is the day that the christians, also called saints (Revelation 1:4-6), gathered together to worship God and take the Lord's Supper, and give:
If they gathered together on the first day of the week, would it be each week, or only once a month, or once every quarter, etc. to take the Lord's Supper?
"I was in the Spirit on the Lord's day..."
I Corinthians 16:2
"On the first day of every week each one of you is to put aside and save, as he may prosper, so that no collections be made when I come."
Are you following the pattern the early christians practiced, under the divine guidance of the inspired apostles that Jesus Christ selected, of singing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs:
"speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord."
"Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly; in all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts unto God."
Who has changed God's pattern?
Those who added an additional type of music into the worship, almost 600 years after Jesus Christ went back into Heaven: mechanical instruments of music!
Are you following the pattern the early christians practiced, under the divine guidance of the inspired apostles that Jesus Christ selected, of praying:
Acts 2:42; I Thessalonians 5:17, 25; Ephesians 6:18; Colossians 4:2, 12; etc.
Are you following the pattern the early christians practiced, under the divine guidance of the inspired apostles that Jesus Christ selected, of teaching:
Acts 2:42; I Timothy 3:15; Matthew 28:18; 2 Timothy 2:2; etc.
Are you following the pattern the early christians practiced, under the divine guidance of the inspired apostles that Jesus Christ selected, of doing only what was authorized by the inspired apostles?
Some tried to do things that were not authorized!
I Corinthians 11:17-34
Study this account very closely!
Where is the authority from Christ for the church to have works in the social, political, or recreational areas?
I Corinthians 11:22, 34
Social activities are NOT to be a part of our religious assembling together!
Notice that the inspired apostle Paul did NOT tell the brethren to share their common food, and/or to keep the common food separate from the Lord's Supper!
No, he told them to eat at home (elsewhere), NOT in the religious assembly!
Look at the religious assemblies around us today. Their main functions seem to involve social activities, eating common meals, and all kinds of entertainment; many things the New Testament church did NOT engage in when they assembled!
Dear reader, God did not send His Son to die on the cross for a glorified YMCA!
I encourage you to: "...speak only as the oracles (utterances) of God..."
I Peter 4:11
I encourage you to: "...not to go beyond the things which are written..."
I Corinthians 4:6
Seek to do as the apostle Paul encouraged the Corinthian christians to do in:
I Corinthians 1:10-13
"Now I exhort you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that you be perfected together in the same mind and in the same judgment. 11 For it has been signified unto me concerning you, by brethren, by them that are of the household of Chloe, that there are divisions among you. 12 Now this I mean, that each one of you says, I am of Paul; and I of Apollos; and I of Cephas; and I of Christ. 13 Is Christ divided? was Paul crucified for you? or were you baptized into the name of Paul?"
WHAT MUST I DO TO BE SAVED?
Hear, learn, and come to Jesus Christ!
John 6:44, 45
"44 No one can come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him; and I will raise him up on the last day. 45 It is written in the prophets, 'And they shall all be taught of God.' Everyone who has heard and learned from the Father, comes to Me."
By believing the Gospel of Jesus Christ, that He is Immanuel, the Messiah, the Word!
"Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, And they shall call His name Immanuel; which is, being interpreted, God with us."
John 4:25, 26
"25 The woman said to Him, 'I know that Messiah is coming (He who is called Christ); when that One comes, He will declare all things to us.' 26 Jesus said to her, ' I who speak to you am He.' "
John 1:1, 14
"1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God." "14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth"
"Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I am He, you will die in your sins."
BUT YOU DO NOT RECEIVE REMISSION OF SINS IN A MENTAL BELIEF ONLY (called Faith Only)
By repenting of our sins!
"I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish."
"Peter said to them, ' Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.' "
Acts 17:30, 31
"30 Therefore having overlooked the times of ignorance, God is now declaring to men that all people everywhere should repent, 31 because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead."
BUT YOU DO NOT RECEIVE REMISSION OF SINS AT THIS POINT IN OBEDIENCE!
By confessing Christ before men!
Matthew 10:32, 33
"32 Therefore everyone who confesses Me before men, I will also confess him before My Father who is in heaven. 33 But whoever denies Me before men, I will also deny him before My Father who is in heaven."
Romans 10:9, 10
"9 that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, unto righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, unto salvation."
1 Timothy 6:12-16
"12 Fight the good fight of faith; take hold of the eternal life to which you were called, and you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses. 13 I charge you in the presence of God, who gives life to all things, and of Christ Jesus, who testified the good confession before Pontius Pilate, 14 that you keep the commandment without stain or reproach until the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ, 15 which He will bring about at the proper time—He who is the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, 16 who alone possesses immortality and dwells in unapproachable light, whom no man has seen or can see. To Him be honor and eternal dominion! Amen."
BUT YOU DO NOT RECEIVE REMISSION OF SINS AT THIS POINT IN OBEDIENCE!
By being baptized into Christ!
NOTE: This is immersion in water 'INTO CHRIST'
for (UNTO, IN ORDER TO) the forgiveness, the remission of your sins!
This is NOT sprinkling or pouring!
"Jesus answered, 'Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.' "
"1 What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? 2 May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it? 3 Or do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus have been baptized into His death? 4 Therefore we have been buried with Him through baptism into death, so that as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, so we too might walk in newness of life. 5 For if we have become united with Him in the likeness of His death, certainly we shall also be in the likeness of His resurrection, 6 knowing this, that our old self was crucified with Him, in order that our body of sin might be done away with, so that we would no longer be slaves to sin; 7 for he who has died is freed from sin."
"37 Now when they heard this, they were pierced to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, 'Brethren, what shall we do?' 38 Peter said to them, 'Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. 39 For the promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself.' 40 And with many other words he solemnly testified and kept on exhorting them, saying, 'Be saved from this perverse generation!' 41 So then, those who had received his word were baptized; and that day there were added about three thousand souls. 42 They were continually devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer."
Notice in the above Scripture that only those who 'received his word' obeyed the gospel!
"But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God."
Have you yet been involved in the 'new birth' from above?
Have you yet been baptized for the correct reason?
Some are baptized today because they have been taught they have already been saved by 'faith only', and that water immersion is only an 'outward sign of an inward change'!
BUT NOTICE THAT 'PREACHING JESUS' INCLUDES WATER BAPTISM!
"35 Then Philip opened his mouth, and beginning from this Scripture he preached Jesus to him. 36 As they went along the road they came to some water; and the eunuch said, 'Look! Water! What prevents me from being baptized?' 37 [And Philip said, 'If you believe with all your heart, you may.' And he answered and said, 'I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.'] 38 And he ordered the chariot to stop; and they both went down into the water, Philip as well as the eunuch, and he baptized him. 39 When they came up out of the water, the Spirit of the Lord snatched Philip away; and the eunuch no longer saw him, but went on his way rejoicing."
Acts 10:47, 48
" 'Surely no one can refuse the water for these to be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we did, can he?' 48 And he ordered them to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ. Then they asked him to stay on for a few days."
This is where we meet His soul saving blood (figuratively of course) which washes away our sins!
Revelation 1:5, 6
"and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To Him who loves us and released us from our sins by His blood" 6 and He has made us to be a kingdom, priests to His God and Father—to Him be the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen."
"Now why do you delay? Get up and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on His name."
I Peter 3:20-22
"20 who once were disobedient, when the patience of God kept waiting in the days of Noah, during the construction of the ark, in which a few, that is, eight persons, were brought safely through the water. 21 Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you—not the removal of dirt from the flesh, but an appeal to God for a good conscience—through the resurrection of Jesus Christ, 22 who is at the right hand of God, having gone into heaven, after angels and authorities and powers had been subjected to Him."
There is not any power in the water (water salvation), but it is DOING what God commands us to do, in HIS WAY , according to HIS TRUTH, which is an appeal to God for a good conscience through Christ's resurrection, by doing His will!
Also notice that is how Jesus purchased His church, with His own blood!
But why are people telling us today that the church isn't important!
"Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood."
Therefore we read:
1 Corinthians 12:13
"For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and we were all made to drink of one Spirit."
Christ Jesus is the Savior of this body, the church, which is His kingdom!
"For the husband is the head of the wife, as Christ also is the head of the church, He Himself being the Savior of the body."
"15 He said to them, 'But who do you say that I am?' 16 Simon Peter answered, 'You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.' 17 And Jesus said to him, 'Blessed are you, Simon Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it. 19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.' "
The rock upon which Christ's church was built was the Truth which Peter had just stated that Jesus Christ is the Son of the living God! The Lord's church was NOT built upon Peter!
Ephesians 1:22, 23
"22 And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church, 23 which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all."
"4 There is one body and one Spirit, just as also you were called in one hope of your calling; 5 one Lord, one faith, one baptism, 6 one God and Father of all who is over all and through all and in all."
Notice only one body, which is His church, His kingdom, just as there is only one baptism, which is water immersion into Christ!
This is how we put Christ on!
"26 For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For all of you who were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise."
YES, YOU DO RECEIVE REMISSION (FORGIVENESS) OF SINS AT THIS POINT IN OBEDIENCE!
Notice the examples of conversion in the book of Acts:
Are you in this church you read about in the New Testament?
Have you correctly put Christ on yet?