GET CLOSE TO GOD!
"Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to
you", (Jas. 4:8).
Someone has said that: "To praise God for His
mercies, is the way to increase them; and to bless
him for miseries, is the way to remove them".
Nothing can harm a Christian, but sin; and nothing
can save a sinner but Christ.
When God created man He placed him near unto
Himself; but when man sinned he fell far away from
the Divine presence. Sin turned the heart of man to
enmity against God, blocked up the way to heaven,
and opened the Gates of death, (Rom. 8:7; 5:12). But
no one need despair. In Jesus Christ, God came to
reconcile us unto Himself -- not imputing unto us
our many trespasses. Having laid our iniquities on
His own dear Son, God has reconciled us unto Himself
through Jesus Christ. What was lost to mankind, in
the first Adam, has been redeemed by the second Adam
--- the "Lord from heaven". Though, by nature, all
are spiritually "dead in trespasses and sin",
whoever believes on the Son of God comes into the
possession of LIFE; by faith that life is retained
forevermore (Jn. 3:l8,36).
It is now the privilege and duty
of every child of God to "draw nigh to God", by
Jesus Christ -- to come near with all the confidence
that a beloved child approaches a kind and indulgent
father. God is well pleased with us IN HIS SON Who
has: settled all disputes, paid all our debts,
mended the breach between us and our Heavenly
Father, and purchased our salvation with His own
However far you may have fallen, as a child of
God, the merciful Father is patiently, lovingly
awaiting your return. Cast yourself at His feet, and
you shall soon know the blessed joy of His favor. If
you have wandered afar, then it is most important
that you RETURN WITHOUT DELAY! Be assured that if
you will draw near to God in faithful, fervent
prayer, in the way of duty; He will draw near to you
in the way of MERCY! There's danger, ruin and
eternal loss in delay.
Nearer, still nearer, close to Thy
Draw me, My Saviour, so precious
Fold me, 0 fold me close to Thy
Shelter me safe in that haven of
-- Mrs. C. H. Morris
Page - 2
FELLOWSHIP MEETING AT CLEAR LAKE
It will be this Editor's privilege to spend the
week of August 6 through 12 with Pastor Homer Bryan
and the Clear Lake Missionary Baptist Church of
Pioneer, Louisiana. It is my understanding that we
will be having both morning and evening services
throughout the week.
On Friday, August 10 brethren are invited to
share a whole day of Fellowship around the Word of
God. It is hoped that brethren will come from far
and near to share in this experience. Then, on
Friday evening, Bro. Bryan will be ordained to the
full work of the ministry.
The folk at Clear Lake are in the process of
building a parsonage for their new pastor on a pay
as you go basis. This week the roof is going up, and
it is hopeful that the Pastor and family will be
able to move into it sometime in the early Fall.
If at all possible, make plans NOW to share our
spiritual blessings at Clear Lake in early August.
PROGRESS REPORT ON PASSAGE & TRANS-
It has been almost two weeks since I heard from
Bro. McCoy, but at that time the transportation fund
for Bro. Sullivan stood at approximately $675. This
is considerably SHORT of what is necessary to get
his family back to Japan -- much less settled on the
field in Okinawa. May the Lord lay on the hearts of
many of his servants a desire to share in the
establishment of this new mission work by making an
early contribution to this fund. But, HURRY! The
Sullivan's have scheduled a flight back to Japan in
approximately TWO MORE MONTHS.
Send your offering: c/o Pastor James A. McCoy,
Route 4, Greencastle, Indiana 46135.
Bro. Michael Rogers reports that the fund
established by Union Hill MBC for the purpose of
purchasing a means of transportation for the Ed
Potter Family, in Brazil, stands at approximately
$2,250. This is considerably short of what they had
hoped to raise by this month. But, since offerings
have begun to come in much faster during the past
few weeks, they now plan to extend the time for a
couple more months before forwarding the fund to
Send your offering for this fund to: Pastor
Michael E. Rogers, Route 2, Box 209, Bradford,
Neither of these churches want YOU to neglect
your local church &
(Continued on Page 4)
THE COURAGE OF GENUINE CONVICTION
"If any man will DO HIS WILL, he shall know the
doctrine", (Jn. 7:17). This appears to be a general
principle expressed by our Lord with regard to
spiritual progress -- both of experience and
understanding. One of God's basic requirements is a
heart that is WILLING TO DO His will.
Though there are a great many who hold what they
call "strong convictions" on various "doctrines" it
seems to have little effect on their LIVING. The
courage to FOLLOW THROUGH on what one believes to be
right is a scarce quality -- even among professed
Christians and Gospel preachers.
This is why my heart rejoiced recently when Bro.
Melvin Gray called to say that -- having seriously
and unsuccessfully searched for evidence of proper
authority behind his own initial baptism -- he had
asked the Mt. Hebron Baptist Church of Lancaster,
Kentucky, to "re-baptize" him. Such a step, by one
who has been in the ministry, served as a spiritual
leader in New Testament churches, and strongly
advocated the necessity of "church authority" is
deeply humiliating -- requiring a vast amount of
Knowing full well that such an act would be
costly -- raising the eyebrows of many brethren,
providing more questions than he could ever hope to
answer to the satisfaction of his critics, and,
perhaps drawing fiery darts of slander and reproach
from others who ought to follow in his footsteps --
Bro. Gray has unflinchingly taken this
crucial step BECAUSE HE IS CONVINCED IT IS RIGHT!!
He has proved himself a man with the COURAGE OF
GENUINE CONVICTION! In doing so, he stands a
foot taller in my eyes!
One may proudly and self-righteously advocate,
and even defend, the principle of "church authority"
-- simply because the arguments once presented
forced him to give MENTAL ASSENT. Even this truth
may be "held in unrighteousness" -- as a mere
"doctrine" before whose righteous demands its
advocate has not ACTUALLY yielded himself. The
ingredients of haughtiness, pride & hypocrisy cannot
possibly be blended in such a manner as to
constitute "spirituality"; nor will they ever
receive God's approval. To theorize about WHY
God waited so long about effectively stirring Bro.
Gray's heart to consider this matter is beyond the
legitimate bounds of human investigation. I will
not, therefore, presume to enter into it. But, I
would not hesitate to suggest that it should shake
the very foundation of such as sit loosely on the
divine order of a New Testament church IN PRACTICE
-- however zealously they may theorize about it, or
even cherish it as a "doctrine" to be taught.
It is my understanding that Mt, Hebron Church
has voted to retain Bro. Gray as their pastor and to
re-ordain him -- following the New Testament order.
Both pastor and people are to be commended for the
mature way in which they have handled a
mutually-humiliating situation. May the Lord prosper
their labors together in the future!
Page - 4
its obligations. But both are offering an unusual
opportunity for the kind of investment that will pay
rich, and eternal, dividends.
Why not get in on it before you FORGET
WHEN SORROW COMES
When sorrow comes, as come it must,
In God a man must place his trust.
There is no power in mortal speech
The anguish of his soul to reach.
No voice, however sweet and low,
Can comfort him or ease the blow.
He cannot from his followmen
Take strength that will sustain
With all that kindly hands will do,
And all that love may offer, too,
HE must believe throughout the test
That God has willed it for the best.
We who would be his friends are
Words from our lips but feebly come
We feel, as we extend our hands,
That one Power only understands
And truly knows the reason why,
So beautiful a soul must die.
We realize how helpless then
Are all the gifts of mortal men.
Nor words which we have power to
Can take the sting of grief away --
That Power which marks the spar-
Must comfort and sustain us all.
When sorrow comes, as come it must,
In God a man must place his trust.
With all the wealth which he may
He cannot meet the test alone,
And only he may stand serene
Who has a faith on which to lean.
-- Edgar P. Guest
What is YOUR relationship to God? ARE YOU PREPARED
TO MEET HIM?