Ask Your Preacher

Ask Your Preacher

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But How Can You Know

Tuesday, October 16, 2018
If you know that you had done something sinful, or you said something wrong, but you didn’t know what it was, could you still confess to it and ask for forgiveness?  If so, how could you know that you were truly forgiven?  I know God can forgive any sin, but how many times do you have to ask to rest yourself assured that you are forgiven?  I know the answer is once.  I KNOW, BUT IT DOESN'T FEEL LIKE ENOUGH.  Please help.

Sincerely,
Remorseful

Dear Remorseful,

As you said, the answer is that you only need to ask once (1 Jn 1:9)... and that includes sins that you don't fully understand.  David asked that God would keep him from "secret sins" (Ps 19:12-13).  However, that really isn't your problem.  Your problem is that it doesn't feel like you are forgiven because that seems too easy.  God tells us that we must have faith in Him (Gal 3:26).  Faith comes through hearing God's Word and trusting in that Word (Rom 10:17).  Sometimes the Bible says things that we don't agree with or that we don't feel could be true... but that doesn't change the fact that they are right.  When our feelings and God's Word disagree with each other, we are the ones that need to accept that we are wrong.  God's grace is much more glorious than we can possibly imagine – we all will spend our entire lives trying to wrap our brains around the depths of God's love (Php 4:7).

 

A Child's Future

Friday, October 12, 2018
What does the Bible say about abortion?  Is it a forgivable sin?  What if the doctor said, "It was not growing anyway."  I was told that but don't know if it was true or if I was told that because I was extremely upset.

Sincerely,
Grieving

Dear Grieving,

All sins are equal, but some sins have worse consequences than others.  In this life, a “little white lie” may not cause you much trouble, but committing adultery will devastate your life.  However, in the eyes of God, all sin is deserving of death (Rom 6:23).  That “little white lie” will send you to hell just as much as the adultery would.  Abortion is such a heinous sin because of how deeply it affects the life and emotional state of the mother and the family and because it destroys a child’s life… but abortion can be forgiven through the blood of Christ.  The apostle Paul murdered christians (Acts 26:10), but Christ saved him (1 Tim 1:15).  In Christ, you are a new person, and the old deeds have passed away (2 Cor 5:17).

Read “Five Steps To Salvation” to see what it takes to become a christian.  You can be forgiven, and you can move forward in life with the peace of mind from knowing you will be reunited with your child in heaven.  If you would like help finding a faithful congregation (not all churches are faithful) that can help you move forward, please feel free to e-mail us at askyourpreacher@mvchurchofchrist.org.

 

Pure Palms

Wednesday, October 10, 2018
Could you elaborate on 1 Timothy 2:8. What is meant by holy hands?

Sincerely,
Hand-ling The Verse

Dear Hand-ling The Verse,

It was not uncommon for those praying to raise their hands toward heaven as they prayed.  In 1 Tim 2:8, Paul is exhorting that we should have clean hands when we pray to God.  Our hands represent our lives and our actions.  If our lives are full of wrathful and doubting behavior, our prayers will be hindered.  The greatest example of this is in 1 Pet 3:7 where God warns husbands that their prayers will be hindered if they mistreat their wives.  Our hands need to be holy when we approach God; our lives need to be holy if we approach the Lord in prayer.

 

Long-Term Consequences

Wednesday, October 03, 2018
My ex-wife and I were both members of the church when she decided to divorce me. Am I now free to re-marry?

Sincerely,
Alone and Lonely

Dear Alone And Lonely,

Your question deals with the issue of marriage, divorce, and remarriage.  This issue is a big issue, and each individual must study the Scriptures concerning this before making a personal decision about it.  Whenever people send us questions dealing with marriage, divorce, and remarriage, we always point them toward our sermon series on the topic.  That series should answer most questions about the subject.  If there are still questions after listening to those five lessons – feel free to write back, but please make sure to include your e-mail, so we can contact you directly.  Here is a link to that series of sermons: “Marriage, Divorce, And Remarriage”.  We are so very sorry for your pain and the sorrow you are going through.  We appreciate your desire to do find and do what is right, regardless of the consequences.

 

When To Fold 'Em...

Tuesday, October 02, 2018
Is it a sin to play Blackjack if I am skilled enough to hold an edge over the house?

Sincerely,
High Roller

Dear High Roller,

The Bible never specifically mentions gambling as a sin, but it doesn’t have to be specifically mentioned to be wrong.  There are a great many things surrounding gambling that are sinful.  Consider that:

  1. Gambling focuses around money and greed.  God warns us clearly about being fixated with money (1 Tim 6:10, Heb 13:5).  God wants us to be satisfied with our income (Eccl 5:10).  Contentment is a major component of spiritual maturity (1 Tim 6:6).
  2. Gambling is used as a means to gain money without working for it.  God finds pleasure in people working for their livelihood (2 Thess 3:10-12, Pr 10:4).
  3. Gambling wastes money because, ultimately, the house does always win.  God expects us to be good stewards (1 Cor 4:2) and save for the future (Pr 6:6-8).
  4. Gambling and the places where gambling occurs are often associated with other sinful things.  There is a reason Las Vegas is called “Sin City”.  That industry is not one that a christian should be supporting (2 Cor 6:16-17).

Gambling is addictive.  We can only have one master (Lk 16:13).

 

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