Gospel Gazette Online
Vol. 15 No. 10 October 2013
Page 15

Questions and Answers

Send your religious questions to rushmore@gospelgazette.com

Louis RushmoreWhat Is blasphemy?

Louis Rushmore, Editor

Blasphemy means evil speaking and is typically thought to be against Almighty God (Romans 2:24; 1 Timothy 6:1; Revelation 13:6; 16:9, 11, 21). However, blasphemy, railing, defaming or speaking evil is sometimes directed toward people, like Moses (Acts 6:11), Christians (1 Peter 4:4; 1 Corinthians 4:13), men in general (Titus 3:2) and dignitaries (Jude 8), against objects, like the Temple or the Law (Acts 6:11, 13), against pagan temples and idols (Acts 19:37), good deeds (Romans 14:16) and even Satan himself (Jude 9). Blasphemy is evil speaking, but the context with respect to a given application will further define it.

Can a Sister Start
a Song in Worship?

Louis Rushmore, Editor

Can a brother delegate authority to a sister to start a song in a worship service? Can a sister start a song in a worship assembly? Isaac M. Manyike

The apostle Paul addressed song leading in 1 Corinthians 14:26 along with other public roles in the assembly of the Lord’s church. In verse 27, those taking a public role are to take their turns, one at a time, so that all things may be done decently and orderly (1 Corinthians 14:40). Likewise, verses 30 and 31 emphasize that participants in the pubic aspect of the worship are to go “one by one.”

However, 1 Corinthians 14:34 rules out women from taking public roles in the worship of the church: “Let your women keep silent in the churches [assemblies], for they are not permitted to speak; but they are to be submissive, as the law also says” (NKJV). Therefore, a preacher has no authority to countermand God and delegate authority to a Christian sister to take the public role of song leader in the worship assembly.

Yet, we are aware that often more women are present in many small congregations, and furthermore, sometimes the few men present are not prepared or able to lead the singing. Still, this does not permit humans to set aside divine instruction. In the first place, men should take upon themselves the responsibility of learning enough about leading singing that they can start the songs; often, the congregation and particularly the women present will begin singing and make up for any deficiency in song leading by the designated song leader. At least, a brother in Christ can stand before the little assembly, announce the song, and then when everyone is ready, say to the congregation something like, “Let us sing.” A responsive church will commence singing, in which assembly are women who may be more able than the song leader.

What Is Willful Sin?

Louis Rushmore, Editor

The concept appears in Hebrews 10:26, which reads, “For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins” (NKJV). “Willfully” means “voluntarily.” Whereas Hebrews 10:26 teaches that we should not voluntarily sin, 1 Peter 5:2 uses the same Greek word in a positive manner: “Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by compulsion but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly.”

Hebrews 10:26 teaches that the sacrifice of Jesus Christ is ineffective for someone as long as he or she continues to sin voluntarily. Nothing can save a person from his or her sin as long as that person persists in that sin.

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