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May 5, 2002 AM


Rev 3:8

INTRO: I beg your indulgence in changing our thoughts from the announced topic this morning. But in view of our coming special outreach contribution there are some things - by way of information, by way of inspiration, by way of instruction - Id like to share with you.


A. Note the following texts

1. Rev 3:8 I have set ... an open door

2. 1 Cor 16:9 great door ... is opened

3. 2 Cor 2:12 a door was opened ... of the Lord

4. Col 4:3 a door of utterance

B. Open doors ... opportunities

1. and, apparently, each is of evangelistic opportunity

2. I am convinced the Lord is opening doors for us

3. from one missionary family in 1985 to twelve in 2002

4. there are many mission fields - but just south of us is one of the largest ... and there we have focused

C. There ...

1. among churches with which we work, 42 baptisms

2. twelve full time men in eight congregations

3. major support for training preachers

4. this year major efforts in Rio Verde, Valles, San Luis Potosi

D. Others ...

1. we have assisted our college students in campaigns

2. we have assisted people who you have mentioned in campaigns

3. along with Mexico mission trip, one in New Iberia, Louisiana,

4. send the light, the blessed gospel light


A. Note the following texts ...

1. Eph 2:10... that we should walk in them ...

2. Titus 2:14 ... zealous of good works ...

3. 1 Tim 6:18,19 communicate - a liberal sharer!

4. 2 Tim 1:16-18 a marvelous example

B. More opportunities!

1. remember Lk 10:38 ... had compassion

2. I suppose there are numerous motives for good works

3. and some of them might not be flattering

4. but when compassion overflows, goodness follows!

C. So ...

1. support of six childrens homes

2. emergency funds for medical needs and such

3. funding for local and foreign benevolence: floods, earthquakes; deprivation and hard times

4. to say nothing of the scores of kindnesses which are manifested among us (I never minimize this spirit)


A. Great privilege calls for great service

1. no doubt about it, we are spiritually and materially privileged - note 2 Cor 8:13-15

2. further, 2 Cor 9:12-14

B. The generous giving of saints meets real needs

1. some needs are for spreading the gospel

2. some needs are for relieving the crises in lives

C. How do we choose to meet larger needs?

1. our annual budget and weekly contribution - 1 Cor 16:1,2

2. our special outreach contributions - Acts 11:29,30

3. those special funds used exclusively for mission and benevolence needs

4. so, next Lords day we have a two check Sunday

CLOSE: May I close with this: 2 Cor 8:3,4. Will we give beyond our power?

Cecil A. Hutson

5 May 2002

God's Plan of Salvation

You must hear the gospel and then understand and recognize that you are lost without Jesus Christ no matter who you are and no matter what your background is. The Bible tells us that “all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23) Before you can be saved, you must understand that you are lost and that the only way to be saved is by obedience to the gospel of Jesus Christ. (2 Thessalonians 1:8) Jesus said, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” (John 14:6) “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12)

You must believe and have faith in God because “without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.” (Hebrews 11:6) But neither belief alone nor faith alone is sufficient to save. (James 2:19; James 2:24; Matthew 7:21)

You must repent of your sins. (Acts 3:19) But repentance alone is not enough. The so-called “Sinner’s Prayer” that you hear so much about today from denominational preachers does not appear anywhere in the Bible. Indeed, nowhere in the Bible was anyone ever told to pray the “Sinner’s Prayer” to be saved. By contrast, there are numerous examples showing that prayer alone does not save. Saul, for example, prayed following his meeting with Jesus on the road to Damascus (Acts 9:11), but Saul was still in his sins when Ananias met him three days later (Acts 22:16). Cornelius prayed to God always, and yet there was something else he needed to do to be saved (Acts 10:2, 6, 33, 48). If prayer alone did not save Saul or Cornelius, prayer alone will not save you. You must obey the gospel. (2 Thess. 1:8)

You must confess that Jesus Christ is the Son of God. (Romans 10:9-10) Note that you do NOT need to make Jesus “Lord of your life.” Why? Because Jesus is already Lord of your life whether or not you have obeyed his gospel. Indeed, we obey him, not to make him Lord, but because he already is Lord. (Acts 2:36) Also, no one in the Bible was ever told to just “accept Jesus as your personal savior.” We must confess that Jesus is the Son of God, but, as with faith and repentance, confession alone does not save. (Matthew 7:21)

Having believed, repented, and confessed that Jesus is the Son of God, you must be baptized for the remission of your sins. (Acts 2:38) It is at this point (and not before) that your sins are forgiven. (Acts 22:16) It is impossible to proclaim the gospel of Jesus Christ without teaching the absolute necessity of baptism for salvation. (Acts 8:35-36; Romans 6:3-4; 1 Peter 3:21) Anyone who responds to the question in Acts 2:37 with an answer that contradicts Acts 2:38 is NOT proclaiming the gospel of Jesus Christ!

Once you are saved, God adds you to his church and writes your name in the Book of Life. (Acts 2:47; Philippians 4:3) To continue in God’s grace, you must continue to serve God faithfully until death. Unless they remain faithful, those who are in God’s grace will fall from grace, and those whose names are in the Book of Life will have their names blotted out of that book. (Revelation 2:10; Revelation 3:5; Galatians 5:4)