Gospel Gazette Online
Vol. 16 No. 2 February 2014
Page 12

A Gospel Preacher Is…

Roelf Ruffner

Roelf RuffnerAbove all, a Gospel preacher is a simple Christian. He has neither titles nor a special suit to wear. Every day, he fights many of the same battles with Satan that other Christians fight. He gets sick on Sunday. He can be exhausted on Wednesday evening. He even visits the sick, when needed.

A preacher is also a proclaimer of God’s Word. He tells the old, old story of Jesus and His love. The story may be tarnished and pitted to some, but it is as fresh as rain in the desert to him. He loves to plant God’s Word in men’s hearts. He is extremely careful in what and how he preaches. Occasionally, he sees the most thrilling thing of all — the seed sprouts and bears fruit.

The Gospel preacher is an exhorter of the brethren. He tries to show them the straight and narrow way that leads to eternal life. Along the way, he encourages many, and may even snatch a few from the fire. In so doing, he constantly returns to the freshness of God’s Word to encourage himself and to stimulate others.

A preacher is a defender of God’s Truth. In some way, he must have a steel hand inside a velvet glove. He must be like Jeremiah the prophet by being a defending wall to his people. It may often be a lonely position, but he must realize that he is never alone.

A preacher must be a rebuker of false teachers and doctrines. With firm gentleness and by the power of the Scriptures, he stops those who sow confusion. This requires much study, prayer and the overcoming of fear and dread. However, he realizes Jesus would not do less for him. The Gospel preacher is a builder of dreams. He has in his hands and in his heart the blueprint and pattern, God’s Word. He must rightly divide it and not be a workman who is ashamed when the Lord returns.

A Gospel preacher is a student of God’s Word. He studies it daily, trying to learn some new insight. He is constantly being renewed by it. Every sermon and Bible class impresses on him that it is truly inspired. He sees it resurrect people’s lives. The more he learns, the more he realizes his purpose in life. God’s purpose for man becomes his purpose.


Alcohol Always Lied to Me

Royce Pendergrass

Royce PendergrassI drank for courage and woke up night after night horrified. I drank for sophistication and became crude. I drank to find peace and ignited a war within myself. I drank to be friendly and became argumentative and nasty. I drank to be sexy and turned people off. I drank so that I could relate to others and I babbled. I drank to put down loneliness and found myself retreating more and more into my shell.

I drank to relax and woke up tense. I drank to be entertaining and became an obnoxious clown. I drank to live more fully and contemplated suicide. I drank for adventure and discovered disaster. I drank to be more honest and insulted my friends. I drank to quiet my nerves and woke up with hangover jangles. I drank to feel better and ended up sick and throwing up.

I drank to have fun and passed out in the middle of the party. I drank to pep myself up and ended up exhausted. I drank to feel successful (a big shot) but ended up a failure. I drank for security and became afraid of my shadow. I drank to feel better about myself and ended up hating me. I drank to prove I could handle alcohol and ended up knowing it controlled me. A friend said to me “But surely, now that you’ve been sober for a while, it would take a lot of alcohol to put you back in that condition.” “Just one drink,” I answered!

The above is an article I found and wanted to share with you as we have the specter of a Wet/Dry Election looming ahead of us. Now seems like a good time to remind ourselves of some basic facts. I am being told: “There is no reason to fight legal alcohol since we have all the private clubs, and drugs are a bigger problem, but no one is trying to stop drug abuse.” This reminded me of the old saying, “Someone told me to cheer up, things could not get worse than they now are. I cheered up and it got worse!” Friends, as terrible as our drug abuse problem and our alcohol related problems are, rest assured it can and will get worse with legalized alcohol all around us.

God’s Word condemns the consumption of alcohol and what it causes people to do. Isaiah spoke out against strong drink to those in Ephraim: “They have erred through wine and strong drink; they are swallowed up of wine and are out of the way through strong drink; they err in vision and stumble in judgment” (Isaiah 28:3ff). Alcoholic consumption dulls the senses, causing people to make bad judgment calls and do evil things.

Paul said, “It is a good thing neither to eat flesh nor to drink wine nor to do any thing whereby your bother stumbles or is offended or made weak” (Romans 14:21). Not only does alcoholism affect the person consuming the alcohol, it affects the lives of his family, friends and others around him. The Wise Man said, “Wine is a mocker and strong drink is a brawler and whosoever errs thereby is not wise” (Proverbs 20:1). In speaking of strong drink, Isaiah said it “justifies the wicked for reward and takes away the righteousness of the righteous from him!” (Isaiah 5:23).

The apostle Paul simply said, “Do you not know that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: fornicators, idolaters, adulterers, effeminate, abusers of themselves with men, thieves, covetous, drunkards, revilers nor extortioners shall inherit the kingdom of God” (1 Corinthians 6: 9-10). Lovers of alcohol are listed among the number who will not enter Heaven.

Friends, we are being faced with the great possibility of having the sale and consumption of alcohol legalized in our beautiful county as we face the wet/dry election. A petition will be going around to obtain enough signatures to get the issue on the ballot. Encourage your friends and neighbors not to sign the petition. Your signature on the petition is one more vote for putting the issue on the ballot. If it gets on the ballot, then we must do everything we can to encourage those around us to vote against legal alcohol in the November election.

The “Keep Independence County Dry Coalition” is spearheading a drive to keep our county dry. Do your part to stand up for what is right and righteous. Your help is needed! May God bless our efforts at keeping our county dry!

[Editor’s Note: Most of the USA and much of the world is awash in alcoholic drinks. Both testaments of the Bible forbid the children of God from consuming alcoholic drink. My book on the subject entitled, Beverage Alcohol, is available to USA residents free on a limited basis for only the cost of shipping. One may access the book entirely free in PDF format at http://www.gospelgazette.com/Library/PDF%20Books/BeverageAlcohol.pdf. You may want to request a free sample via email of my tract about the same subject. Due to the widespread availability of alcohol to anyone who desires it, the dreadful consequences of alcohol consumption are many times greater than the results of all other drug use combined. ~ Louis Rushmore]


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