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

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“In Understanding be Mature”

old hands bible

It is interesting how foundational the concept of authority is to the Bible. Almost every page includes the concept, with calls to obey God, warnings about disobedience, and examples of those who experience God’s pleasure or wrath. Often the references are explicit, but there are innumerable implications as well.

In 1 Corinthians 14, the apostle Paul instructs his readers in the matter of spiritual gifts. He there explains that the gift of prophecy is of greater value than speaking in tongues. This is because prophecy can be understood, where tongue speaking can’t (without an interpreter). Paul writes, “Yet in the church I would rather speak five words with my understanding, that I may teach others also, than ten thousand words in a tongue” (vs. 19).

He then writes, “Brethren, do not be children in understanding; however, in malice be babes, but in understanding be mature” (vs. 20). One might ask, why is it so important to be mature in understanding? The answer is found in Paul’s contention in verse 37, “If anyone thinks himself to be a prophet or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things I write to you are the commandments of the Lord.”

One wag said, “It is the 10 commandments, not the 10 suggestions. We need awareness of what scripture teaches, because scripture contains God’s commandments to men. These instructions, by nature, are not optional. Remember, Jesus “became the author of eternal salvation to all who obey Him” (Hebrews 5:9).

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