Sound Teaching

This is the teaching site of the West Side church of Christ in Fort Worth, TX. Unless otherwise indicated, all materials were written and prepared by Stan Cox

Index by Subject

Partisanship and Morality

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President Trump is a lightning rod for controversy. His pugnacious personality, outsider status and vulgarity is shocking to the sensibilities of both media and political opponents.

The criticisms of the President are well deserved on his part, as he is not a pleasant person. What is obvious to the unbiased, however, is that partisanship plays a large role in the criticism.

It is striking how often there is a willingness to overlook the failings of one’s own champion, while excoriating any perceived imperfection in the opponent’s man or woman.

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Sojourners and Pilgrims

sojourners

The apostle Peter made an impassioned petition to the Christians to whom he wrote in 1 Peter 2:11-12, “Beloved, I beg you as sojourners and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts which war against the soul, having your conduct honorable among the Gentiles…” What are these fleshly lusts?

First, the terms defined. 1) “fleshly” (sarkikos) under the control of the animal appetites; 2) “lusts” (epithumia) craving, longing, desire for what is forbidden. (Thayer). So, in our context, fleshly lusts are those desires that come from the basest parts of man — desires that are forbidden by God.

The Bible explicitly names many of these. A partial list includes: premarital and extramarital sex, including homosexuality; covetousness; murder; strife; deceit; violence; pride; gossip; anger; willfulness; rebellion; envy; idolatry; lewdness; hatred; jealousy; drunkenness; partying (revelries); extortion; stealing (cf. Romans 1:28-32; Galatians 5:19-21; 1 Peter 4:3; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10).

When we become Christians, we become new creatures. This world is no longer our home, and our lives should mirror that reality. When we live righteous lives, we will be thought strange by those who act on those fleshly lusts. No matter, for our desire is for our Lord. We are pilgrims in a strange land — heaven is our home!

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“He Gave Ear to Me”

God Hears

“I cried out to God with my voice—To God with my voice; and He gave ear to me” (Psalm 77:1).

The Psalmist’s trouble is one we feel from time to time. He states that “in the day of my trouble I sought the Lord” but that “My soul refused to be comforted. I remembered God, and was troubled; I complained, and my spirit was overwhelmed” (2-3).

We too can be so troubled that it seems to us God has forgotten us! “Will the Lord cast off forever? And will He be favorable no more? Has His mercy ceased forever? Has His promise failed forevermore? Has God forgotten to be gracious?” (7-9).

But, if we consider carefully, we will remember the continued faithfulness of God. “Your way, O God, is in the sanctuary; Who is so great a God as our God? You are the God who does wonders…” (13-14).

When we consider that God is able to help us, and that He is willing to give ear to our petitions, we can ultimately trust in His compassion, strength and redemptive work in our lives. As the Psalmist wrote, “You have with Your arm redeemed Your people, the sons of Jacob and Joseph” (15); we too can proclaim that our God loves us, and has redeemed all men through His Son and our Savior, Jesus Christ. Truly, God gives ear to those who are His!

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Sermon: Jesus – Prince, Captain, Author (archegos)

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Sermon by Jeremiah Cox (Visiting preacher)

An examination of the greek term (archegos) as it is used to refer to Jesus. Wonderful lessons are learned by the designations given to our Lord.

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The Day of the Lord

The phrase, “the day of the Lord” is one that is used to indicate a coming judgment from God.  Isaiah used it to refer to God’s impending judgment of Babylon (Isaiah 13).  Jeremiah (46:10), Ezekiel (30:3) and Obadiah (15) all use the phrase in a similar fashion.

Such judgment was not reserved for the enemies of Israel.  Numerous prophets used this same phrase in reference to God’s judgment of His own people.  Consider these words from the prophet Joel, “Alas for the day! For the day of the Lord is at hand; It shall come as destruction from the Almighty” (Joel 1:15). Interestingly, there is the promise of deliverance that is given to the faithful even in that day (cf. Joel 2:32).

In 2 Peter 3:10, the phrase is used to designate a final judgment of God.  “But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up.”  In that day, there is the promise of deliverance!  “Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells” (vs. 13).

Turn to God and serve Him.  Then give praise to Him as you bask in the promise of His glory!

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Sermon: The Woman About to be Stoned

7 - The Woman About to be Stoned

This lesson discusses an example of Jesus’ masterful dealing’s with man. We see His ability to deftly handle the efforts of His enemies to destroy His reputation, to convict the hearts of men, and His great compassion and love for the souls of men.

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Sermon: What Will You Do in the New Year?

What Will You Do in the New Year

A lesson on committment and zeal as a new year begins. The thoughts were inspired by a free form poem written by a young Christian girl named Kelsey Harris. She passed away after battling a malignant brain tumor at the age of 16 in 2009.

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Sermon: Sharing the Gospel

Sharing Gospel

All disciples are expected to share the gospel of our Lord with others. When it is done, it stirs things up. But, that is exactly what the gospel is supposed to do!

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Sermon: He Became Poor – We Became Rich

He Became Poor We Became Rich

Paul reveals our blessings in Christ in his 2nd letter to the Corinthians. 2 Corinthians 8:9 supplies the premise for this study.

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In Days of Old

God is powerful, sovereign, and has imposed His will on men in ages past.  This was especially true with Israel, who inhabited the land of Canaan only because of God’s intervention.  “For they did not gain possession of the land by their own sword, nor did their own arm save them; but it was Your right hand, Your arm, and the light of Your countenance, because You favored them” (Psalm 44:3).

But, how did the Psalmist know of this great victory?  “We have heard with our ears, O God, our fathers have told us, the deeds You did in their days, in days of old(Psalm 44:1).

Today, we are blessed to have such deeds preserved in the Bible itself.  The annals of God’s demonstration of might, justice and mercy to His people.  These things strengthen and establish our faith.

“In God we boast all day long and praise Your name forever” (Psalm 44:8)

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Investing, Divesting & Usurping

Numbers 20 records a rather significant event in the early history of the nation of Israel.  Aaron and his sons were appointed by God to be priests of the people at the establishment of the nation.  “Now take Aaron your brother, and his sons with him, from among the children of Israel, that he may minister to Me as priest, Aaron and Aaron’s sons: Nadab, Abihu, Eleazar, and Ithamar. And you shall make holy garments for Aaron your brother, for glory and for beauty. So you shall speak to all who are gifted artisans, whom I have filled with the spirit of wisdom, that they may make Aaron’s garments, to consecrate him, that he may minister to Me as priest” (Exodus 28:1-3). Continue reading » Investing, Divesting & Usurping

Sermon: The Samaritan Woman at the Well

6 - The Samaritan Woman at the Well

Lessons learned from the conversation Jesus had with the Samaritan woman in John 4 include the reality of a new relationship between Jew and Gentile, a new covenant between God and man, a new worship, and a new hope (living water).

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Sermon: The Glory of God

The Glory of God

God’s glory compels His children to live by faith, to be holy in conduct, and to offer continual praise to His name. If we do so, we are promised we will share in His glory!

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Be Still, and Know that I Am God

The 46th Psalm does a wonderful job of expressing the powerful protection God affords His people.  “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.  Therefore we will not fear, even though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; though its waters roar and be troubled, though the mountains shake with its swelling” (1-3).

Our protection is sure.  It is sure because of God’s infinite power.  It is sure because of His constant presence and awareness.  It is sure because of His great wisdom and knowledge.  It is sure because He loves those who are His.  Truly “the Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge” (11).

In our knowledge that God is our refuge there is strength, peace and hope.  There is also a reason for us to offer Him our praise and thanksgiving!  “I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!” (10).

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Sermon: The Events of Judgment Day

The Events of Judgment Day

This lesson describes all the things that will happen on the Day that Jesus returns to judge the world.

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