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Welcome To The Jackson Drive Church Of Christ Website!

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Hiram Hutto - El Dareer Debate - October 1974

Schedule Of Services:

Sunday Morning:
Bible Study   9:00
Worship      10:00

Sunday Evening:
Worship       5:00

Wednesday Evening:
Bible Study   7:00

 

 

Jackson Drive's Address:

1110 Jackson Drive Athens, Alabama 35611

 

Preacher:

Scott Richardson

 

Elders:

Owen Griggs

Tim Hamilton

Jackson Drive

Admonisher

                                                                                                        January 31, 2016



 

Vice versus Virtue (5) Battling Improper Public Behavior and Attitude



Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, 20 idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, 21 envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 24 Now those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. (Galatians 5:19-25)

As noted in previous studies, Paul, in listing some of the works of the flesh, has given us behaviors and attitudes which fit into natural groups. We have studied all but the last group. Perhaps it is the last to help us see a progression from deeds that most would consider very private, then to very personal, and then finally to deeds and actions that are so very public in nature. This shows clearly that the deeds of the flesh, and the attitudes that lead to them, are things that cannot be hidden—“Now the deeds of the flesh are evident”—no matter how private we think they might be. The deeds certainly are not hidden to God. Even to fellow men, deeds will become plain. If we are willing to sin privately, it is not a far step to be seen in sin by friends and family members. If they see, then the easy, next stride is to the attitude, “Well, I don’t care what anyone thinks about my behavior.”

Perhaps the deeds of a public nature also come last to help us realize that when we engage in these things we are doing even more widespread damage. Now, the sphere of influence is at the widest. No only will we have lost our self-respect and the respect of our family and friends, but we will be of “bad reputation” even to those who may not know us personally. Most who see us would assume that if we behave in a fleshly manner in public, so must we behave in all aspects of our life. This assumption is obviously with foundation. For instance, how often is drunkenness accompanied by deeds such as anger and disputes? How often is it associated with acts of an immoral and impure nature? Notice what Paul wrote to Christians in Rome: “Let us behave properly as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and jealousy” (Romans 13:13). Undeniably, these deeds are detrimental and in need of our examination.

Drunkenness, as we might expect, comes from a root associated with strong wine. It is used three times in the New Testament—in our text from Galatians, in the previously quoted passage from Romans, and also in Luke: “Be on guard, so that your hearts will not be weighted down with dissipation and drunkenness and the worries of life, and that day will not come on you suddenly like a trap” (Luke 21:34). This practice of being drunk, was not only recognized by Christians as being fleshly, but was thought of by the non-Christian populace as being shameful. “There is drunkenness (methe). To the Greeks drunkenness was a particularly disgraceful thing. They were a wine-drinking people. Even children drank wine. Breakfast was called akratisma, and consisted of a slice of bread dipped in wine. For all that, drunkenness was considered specially shameful, for the wine the Greek drank was much diluted, and was drunk because the water supply was inadequate and dangerous. This was a vice which not only a Christian but any respectable heathen also would have condemned” (Wm. Barclay).

Carousing is from a word which had the original meaning of a type of village festival, but not a festival in a positive sense. Carousing, or reveling, is noted as “a nocturnal and riotous procession of half drunken and frolicsome fellows who after supper parade through the streets with torches and music in honour of Bacchus or some other deity, and sing and play before houses of male and female friends; hence used generally of feasts and drinking parties that are protracted till late at night and indulge in revelry” (Thayer). “Originally komos was the band of friends who accompanied a victor home from the games, singing his praises and celebrating his triumph as they went. Later it came to mean a noisy band of revellers who swept their way through the city streets at night, a band of roysterers, what, in Regency England, would have been called a rout. It describes the kind of revelry which lowers a man's self and is a nuisance to others” (Barclay). The apostle Peter made note of this type of behavior when he reminded Christians that the time had long passed when they should have turned form it. “For the time already past is sufficient for you to have carried out the desire of the Gentiles, having pursued a course of sensuality, lusts, drunkenness, carousing, drinking parties and abominable idolatries” (1Peter 4:3).

A Christian, being led by the Spirit and walking after His instruction, brings glory to God with his deeds. Jesus said, “Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven” (Matthew 5:16). God intended for His people to walk in good works: “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10). By any measure, can these improper deeds of a public nature be considered to be glorifying God? How can anyone who engages in these works of the of the flesh and bearing these fleshly attitudes, expect to inherit the kingdom? They cannot. We must be led by the Spirit exhibiting that characteristic fruit—love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. We must crucify those passions and desires to live by the Spirit. This is how the battle is won.


—S. Scott Richardson Sr.
 


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