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"Not ... the word of men but as what it really is,
the word of God"
(I Thessalonians 2:13)
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#309, 7th October 2016
Hi, Friend,
Thank you for letting us visit with you again and welcoming us into your life. We are thankful for your interest. Among other things, we continue in this issue with an article using I Thessalonians on God's Word to the church and your life.
 
21 years on the web
We find it hard to believe too, but it is true! Our first web site was in the early days of dial-up internet and had the address of catalog.com/posword. Our files have no record of the first page, which was uploaded on October 1st 1995 and the next day Peter Wade left for one month of ministry in the US.
    We do remember what the first page contained, and the article is still online.
It was titled "How to Walk on Water." In appearance, it was just a straight page of text, hand-crafted in the rather basic HTML 1 of the day, and looked very different to what it does now. And that was the site!
     In November other articles appeared and by the end of the next two years there were many articles and digital versions of old books in the public domain by great teachers of the past. A bookshop appeared, written entirely in Javascript. In 2000 we converted the site to a Content Management System named PHP-Nuke, a complex collection of nested tables many levels deep along with HTML 4.0, and later PHP-Evo. Finally we graduated to WordPress around 2008, now the engine behind over 25 percent of web sites.
     Shortly, we will introduce a new-look responsive site, catering to desktops as well as mobiles and tablets. You'll be the first to know when that becomes live!

My words will not pass away


In this issue, I'm continuing to look at the exciting book of I Thessalonians and what it says about God's Word, and now we are ready for chapter 2. "We had boldness in our God to declare to you the gospel of God" (2:2 ESV). Paul wrote to the Romans later that he was not ashamed of the gospel. Unashamed believers can share the gospel with boldness, not coldness! In Acts 4:29 Peter and John with other believers prayed to be able "...to continue to speak your word with boldness." This was the only reason Paul was in Thessalonica: to declare the gospel and to make learners (disciples) who became believers.

"For our appeal does not spring from error or impurity or any attempt to deceive" (2:3). The ground of Paul's boldness was his freedom from deceit, uncleaness, and guile (JFB). Often when Vivien and I are watching a preacher on TV, one of us will turn to the other and say, "Would you buy a used car from this man?" And far too often the answer is "No!" We certainly would have bought a tent from Paul, if we had lived in his day. This world is crying out for good news that is not commingled with greed or fund-raising.
J. Hudson Taylor
"For we never came with words of flattery, as you know, nor with a pretext for greed -- God is witness. [6] Nor did we seek glory from people, whether from you or from others, though we could have made demands as apostles of Christ" (2:5-6). One prominent evangelist from 1947 onwards wrote that God told him not to touch "the gold or the glory." That principle is clear is these verses and still a mandate for preachers and teachers today.
Then in verses 7-12 Paul recounts his brief time he spent with believers in Thessalonica, and makes this point in verse 13: "And we also thank God constantly for this, that when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men but as what it really is, the word of God, which is at work in you believers."

Here we have the authenticity and integrity of the Bible. Those believers heard it as a spoken word, and recognized that it was more than just good oratory by men. It really is the word of God. And when Paul had finished teaching, the word of God continued its work in those who believed it. Jesus himself had said, "The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and life" (John 6:63). Peter wrote of "the living and abiding word of God" (I Peter 1:23).

We've given our lives for the past six decades to sharing this living word of God, so that believers can see they are who God says they are, they have what God says they have, and they can do what God says they can do. God's word is absolute; a politically correct culture is relative. The church is now on the margins of society, just like it was in Acts -- and that is where its best work is done.

Though "heaven and earth will pass away, ...my words will not pass away" (Jesus, Matthew 24:35, Mark 13:31, Luke 21:33). Now that is absolute and permanent! -- Peter Wade.
Book "In Christ, Christ In" Peter Wade
IN CHRIST, CHRIST IN is possibly Peter Wade's most important book. This book examines what God did for us when we became a Christ follower and were saved. What is our identity? What help do we have along life's way.
     "In Christ" is our location; "Christ In" is our strength. We need to recognize both truths. Jesus taught it and Paul revealed its depth and permanence. "They are two different truths, but each is the complement of the other, and together they constitute the Christ life..." (A.B. Simpson, 1888).
     In what could have been a 300-400 page book, Peter has in 128 pages stuck to the heart of these truths, and included diagrams plus a complete concordance of all usages in Paul's writings, so you can check the facts and enjoy all that God has done for you. GET YOUR COPY NOW from our US bookstore, or for Australian delivery from here ! And be what God says you are and enjoy what God says you have!

In Christ or Out of Christ


E.Stanley Jones was a missionary to India for over half a century, and a “reluctant” author of 28 books, most of which were annual bestselling daily devotionals. This extract is from the introduction to "In Christ." (Available online from Amazon.com.)

The need is some concept that would reduce the whole of life to the utmost simplicity. If you have that, you’re “in”; if you don’t have it, you’re “out.” By “in” I mean “in life,” and by “out,” “out of life.” I felt I had found that concept in the phrase “in Christ.” If you are “in Christ” you’re “in life”; if you are “out of Christ” you’re “out of life.”
     If that proposition be true, then it cuts down through all veneer, all seeming, all make-believe, all marginalisms, all halfwayisms—through everything—and brings us to the ultimate essence of things: If you are “in Christ” you are in life; if you are “out of Christ” you’re out of life, here and now, and hereafter.
     Obviously, this concept goes deeper than being interested in religion, for you may be interested in religion and not be “in Christ.” You may be in the church and not be “in Christ”; in orthodoxy, and not in Him...
     The phrase “in Christ” is the ultimate phrase in the Christian faith, for it locates us in a Person—the Divine Person—and it locates us in Him here and now. It brings us to the ultimate relationship—”in.” Obviously this “in” brings us nearer than “near Christ,” “following Christ,” “believing in Christ,” or even “committed to Christ.” You cannot go further or deeper than “in.” (Used by permission.)
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"Authentic Christians" [#308],
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