THE RIGHT HANDS OF FELLOWSHIP NO. 2

By

Shelby G. Floyd

And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision. -Galatians 2:9 KJV

LESSON TWO

FELLOWSHIP WITH CHRIST

Many persons do not have an accurate understanding of what is involved in fellowship with God and with one another. About the only idea that some have concerning fellowship is a sign over a door in some church building which says, “Fellowship Room.” This lesson is designed to enlighten our understanding concerning our fellowship with Christ the Son of God.

The apostle John said,

“That which we have seen and heard we declare to you, that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ” (1 John 1: 3).

Continue reading “THE RIGHT HANDS OF FELLOWSHIP NO. 2”

LIVING FOR CHRIST

By

Shelby G. Floyd

to-live-is-christ

The apostle Paul was arrested at Jerusalem and he was sent by the governing authorities on a dangerous sea voyage to Rome. The author of the Acts said,

“When we got to Rome, Paul was allowed to live by himself with a soldier to guard him” (Acts 28: 16).

What was going on during Paul’s two years of imprisonment in Rome? “For two whole years Paul stayed there in his own rented house and welcomed all who came to see him. Boldly and without hindrance he preached the kingdom of God and taught about the Lord Jesus Christ” (Acts 28: 30-31). Basically, Paul was preaching and teaching the gospel of Christ to a captive audience.

A LETTER FROM PRISON

Paul wrote Philippians from his prison cell. From a strictly worldly viewpoint, being in prison for no crime seemed to be a bad thing. When Christ is our life, God can take a bad thing and make it a good thing, and can even make it a God thing. Paul had a positive spirit. Because of the prayers of the Philippians for him and the power of the Spirit of Christ that was within him, he believed, “What has happened to me will turn out for my deliverance” (Philippians 1:19).

DO NOT BE ASHAMED OF CHRIST

Paul confessed that he eagerly expected, and hoped that he would not be ashamed of Christ and the gospel of Christ. He intended to be bold and courageous in exalting and magnifying Christ, whether it was by life or death (Philippians 1:20). He declared, “For to me, to live is Christ and to die is again” (Philippians 1:21). If Christ is not our life, we are not ready to die. Paul had already died to sin and now Christ was living in him. To the Galatians he said,

“I have been crucified with Christ and 1 no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20).

Let all who have been baptized into Christ rise to walk a new life of joy, and focus on living for Christ.

Copyright © 2017 Shelby G. Floyd, All Rights Reserved

Shelby Preaching

Shelby G. Floyd
Heartland Church of Christ
1693 West Main Street
Greenwood, Indiana 46142

THE CHARACTER OF CORNELIUS

By

Shelby G. Floyd

good-character

CORNELIUS THE CENTURION

One of the most interesting characters in the book of Acts is Cornelius the centurion, on occupation in Palestine on behalf of the Roman government. You could hardly find a better person morally either in or out of the church. Luke gives this description of the character of Cornelius: “A devout man who feared God with all his household, gave alms generously to the people, and prayed continually to God” (Acts 10:2 ESV).

CORNELIUS A JUST MAN

The men who were sent down to invite Peter back to his house further described Cornelius as “a just man, one who fears God and has a good reputation among all the nation of the Jews” (Acts 10:22 NKJV).

CORNELIUS NOT A SAVED MAN

If you were to ask people today if that man were saved, they would probably reply yes. But that is not what the Bible teaches. Even though Cornelius was a good man and highly respected among the people, he still needed to hear words whereby he and his family could be saved. The angel of the Lord gave Cornelius this command: “Now send men to Joppa, and send for Simon whose surname is Peter. He is lodging with Simon, a tanner, whose house is by the sea. He will tell you what you must do” (Acts 10:5-6 NKJV).

After having presented the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ, Peter commanded Cornelius and those present, to be baptized in the name of the Lord: “Can anyone keep these people from being baptized with water? They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have.” So he ordered that they be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ (Acts 10:47-48 NIV). Back in the beginning when the church was first established, Peter said baptism was for the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38). And now with the Gentiles he orders the same command.

CORNELIUS WAS A BELIEVING BAPTIZED MAN

It is interesting that the last thing that Peter said before his sermon was interrupted was about faith: “To Him all the prophets witness that, through His name, whoever believes in Him will receive remission of sins” (Acts 10:43 NKJV). But the first thing Peter said after the interruption ceased was a command to be baptized:

““Can anyone forbid water, that these should not be baptized who have received the Holy Spirit just as we have?” And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of the Lord. Then they asked him to stay a few days” (Acts 10:47-48).

Therefore, no one can be saved just because they are a good person for all have sinned: “What then? Are we better than they? Not at all. For we have previously charged both Jews and Greeks that they are all under sin” Romans 3:9). Even good people are sinners in some form or fashion. “…for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Acts 3:10).

Copyright © 2016 Shelby G. Floyd, All Rights Reserved

Shelby G. Floyd

Shelby G. Floyd
Heartland Church of Christ
1693 West Main Street
Greenwood, Indiana 46142

Get Up and Be Baptized

By

Shelby G. Floyd

George Washington Immersed

It has been stated that George Washington, the father of our country was baptized by immersion. The following photo hangs in Gano Chapel of William Jewell College in Liberty, Missouri. It pictures George Washington being immersed by the preacher John Gano (1736-1804).

Three Aspects of Baptism

There are only three aspects of baptism: (1) The subject of baptism; (2) The action of bap¬tism; and (3) The purpose of baptism. When Paul gave an account of his own baptism, he related that the preacher Ananias commanded him, “And now what are you waiting for? Get up, be baptized and wash your sins away, calling on his name” (Acts 22.16). If Paul was saved before his baptism, then he was saved while still in his sins. But Jesus said baptism was to be saved from sin.

Belief Plus Baptism Equals Salvation

Jesus declared in his final words, “Go into all the word and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned” (Mark 16:15-16 ESV). This is plain–belief plus baptism equals salvation. Belief minus baptism equals condemnation. Were it not for the traditions and doctrines of men (Matthew 15:7-9), more believers would obey the Lord in baptism.

Paul was not saved before his baptism. Paul was a strict, zealous persecutor of the church and he thought he was doing the right thing. But he was lost without Christ. But when he did what Christ commanded him to do by the preaching of the gospel, he was saved like everyone else then and like all are today.

Baptism is a likeness to the death, burial and resurrection of Christ. Paul declares in Romans 6:3-4: “Or do you not know that as many of us as were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into His death? Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life” NKJV.

This chart illustrates that in water baptism for the forgiveness of sins, the sinner dies to a life of sin, buries the dead sinner and is resurrected a forgiven child of God to live a new life.

Chart--Baptism

A good example is the Christians at Corinth, Greece. The apostle Paul founded this congregation and then stayed with them for a year and a half. At first there was much persecution, but the Lord told Paul that He potentially had many people in this city. The Bible declares, that “many of the Corinthians hearing, believed and were baptized (Acts 18:8).

Live a New Life

Now it was necessary to change their old manner of life and begin living a new life for the Lord. The Bible says, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new” (2 Corinthians 5:17). There is only one way to get into Christ and that is to be baptized into Christ (Galatians 3:26-27). Faith is unto (Romans 10:10), repentance is unto (Acts 11:18), confession of faith is unto (Romans 10:10), but water baptism for forgiveness of sin is always into!

In the judgment of most Americans, George Washington was our best President. He like all of us was not perfect, for all have sinned and come short of God’s glory (Romans 3:23), and “there is none righteous, no, not one” (Romans 3:10). But thank God the founding father of our country was wise enough in the scriptures to obey the Lord in baptism!

Shelby G. Floyd

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Shelby@thefloyds.net