Restoration Principles

King Josiah and the scroll

A movement began a couple hundred years ago in this country to try to restore New Testament Christianity. In this period, men discarded the creeds and churches of men to return to the pattern found in the New Testament. In 2 Kings 22, a similar restoration began. The goal was to return to the pattern found in the Law of Moses. The principles in this chapter show how faithful service to God can be restored and maintained. These principles were held by those who worked to restore New Testament Christianity in this country. The same principles can help us today to restore and maintain faithful service to God. Let us examine some lessons from the restoration of King Josiah’s day.
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And So “They Watched Him”

[Article written by Matt Nevins. Originally published in his email newsletter “The Lamp.”]

The Scriptures expressly states that “God is light and in Him is no darkness at all” (1 Jn. 1:5). The direct comparison between God and light is used to characterize God’s nature in practicing truth. Therefore those who want to have fellowship, or share in common, with God must also acquire this quality (1 Jn. 1:6-7). When people choose to practice truth and righteousness, people will fulfill the purpose of life-fear God and keep His commandments (Eccl. 12:13). In other words we were created for good works to glorify God (Eph. 2:10, Mt. 5:16, Tit. 2:14). Practicing truth like light has no need to be hidden, but can expose the evil deeds that are both openly and secretly practiced.
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Words of Wisdom About the Use of Alcohol

The consumption of alcohol is widespread in our culture. Those who drink alcohol come from every station of life. Regardless of race, gender, wealth, profession, or region, the use of alcohol is a problem. Peter, when he mentioned sins that were common among those in the world, listed three that had to do with the consumption of alcohol – “drunkenness, carousing, drinking parties” (1 Peter 4:3). Peter expected that those in the world would be “surprised that you [Christians] do not run with them into the same excesses of dissipation” (1 Peter 4:4). There would be a striking contrast between Christians and non-Christians in that the Christians did not engage in these sinful practices. And yet, many Christians today engage in the practice of drinking alcohol. Others, although they do not drink, see nothing wrong with it and defend the practice.

While men use what seems to be wise reasoning to defend the consumption of alcohol, we need to remember that even “the foolishness of God is wiser than men” (1 Corinthians 1:25). So for this article, let us consider some words of wisdom from Solomon in the inspired word of God about the use of alcohol (Proverbs 23:29-35).
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A Covenant with My Eyes

Eye

The book of Job begins with Job losing his wealth and family as a result of Satan testing this righteous man. This man is described as one who was “blameless, upright, fearing God and turning away from evil” (Job 1:1). Despite his righteousness, God allowed this suffering. The majority of the book contains discussions between Job and his three friends as to why all of this was happening. The three friends reasoned that Job’s sufferings were the result of God punishing him for sin. But over and over, Job maintained his righteousness. Notice one statement in particular that Job made to defend his innocence:

I have made a covenant with my eyes; why then should I look upon a young woman?” (Job 31:1).

What did Job mean by this statement? Was he saying that he had made up his mind that he would not look at a woman for any reason at all? Of course not. What he was saying was that he would not look at a woman with lust for her in his heart. The New International Version actually translates the verse this way: “I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a young woman.
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Sabbath Keeping

Ten Commandments

Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy” (Exodus 20:8). This command was given to the children of Israel as part of the Ten Commandments – the foundation of the Law of Moses. In remembering the Sabbath, the Israelites were to rest (Exodus 20:10). Whatever work they had to do was to be done during the other six days of the week (Exodus 20:9). The basis for this command went back to creation: “For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth…and rested on the seventh day; therefore the Lord blessed the sabbath day and made it holy” (Exodus 20:11). The Jewish people under the Mosaic Law were to “remember the sabbath day,” but is this a day that Christians are to observe? Are we required to keep the Sabbath? Some believe that we are. What do the Scriptures say?
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Saul’s Mission Against Amalek

Death of King Agag

Now go and strike Amalek and utterly destroy all that he has, and do not spare him; but put to death both man and woman, child and infant, ox and sheep, camel and donkey” (1 Samuel 15:3).

The Lord gave Saul, king of Israel, a mission. While it may not have been an easy task, it was a simple one. It was not one that Saul could misunderstand. The Lord wanted the nation of Amalek to be punished and He sent Saul on a mission to do it. Again, this was a simple task: Destroy everything. Yet Saul’s actions in carrying out that task caused him to be rejected from being king (1 Samuel 15:26) and caused the Lord to regret even making him king (1 Samuel 15:35). Let us look at some lessons we can learn from Saul that relate to our obedience to God.
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Many, Yet One

[Article written by Matt Nevins. Originally published in his email newsletter “The Lamp.”]

In different arenas of society, people of common interests will assemble a unique body. This body of individuals can stand as one based upon a shared platform of beliefs. We understand this quite well during election years when different candidates are running for an office. Reporters will compare the candidates stand against the political party. Usually a political party will be united in their stands on certain subjects (i.e. abortion, capital punishment, unemployment, tax rates, etc.). This unity that exists allows harmony among its members. People of the world are able to recognize when there is unity or discord.
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