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Fulton County Gospel News

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Men's Choices

By Jerry C. Brewer

Many people have heard the statement, “Attend the church of your choice,” so often they may believe it is actually in the Bible.  “Attend the church of your choice” implies that Christianity is like a cafeteria where one can choose to accept any part of God’s Truth which he likes and reject any which does not suit his taste, regardless of what God has said.  This approach to religion makes man—not God—the final authority.

The Bible does not teach that Christianity offers multiple choices which God will accept.  While it’s true that there are many different denominations from which to choose, it is also true that Christ built only one church (Matthew 16:18) purchased only one with his blood (Acts 20:28) and will save only that one church (Ephesians 5:23).  We have the freedom of choice because God made man a creature of free will.  But that does not mean God accepts every choice man makes.  God expects all men to choose what He has commanded.  He won’t prevent us from making wrong choices, but He will not accept religion that is not prescribed in His Word.

The Bible is full of examples of men who made choices.  Some of those pleased God and some did not.  For instance, Noah did not have the “wood of his choice” when he built the ark. God told him to, “Make thee an ark of gopher wood” (Genesis 6:14).  If Noah had reasoned that pine was a light wood and easy to work with and would do just as well as gopher wood, pine would have been the wood of Noah’s choice.  But God gave him no choice in the kind of wood he was to use, and Genesis 6:22 says Noah “did according to all that God commanded him.”  In order to save himself and his family from the flood’s destruction, Noah had no other choice.

Cain had no “sacrifice of his choice” in Genesis 4.  The Bible says, “And in the process of time it came to pass, that Cain brought of the fruit of the ground an offering unto the Lord.  And Abel, he also brought of the firstlings of his flock and the fat thereof.  And the Lord had respect unto Abel and to his offering: but unto Cain and to his offering he had not respect” (Genesis 4:3-4).  Hebrews 11:4 says Abel offered his sacrifice, “by faith.”  Cain did not.  Since “faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the word of God” (Romans 10:17), Abel heard and obeyed God.  Cain did not.

Man has only two choices in religion.  He can do what God specifies in His word, or do what man chooses and ignore what God has said.  Jesus said the overwhelming majority of the human race will be lost because they travel the way of man’s choice instead of God’s (Matthew 7:13-14).  God’s choice is that we believe (Hebrews 11:6; John 8:24) repent of our sins (Acts 17:30) confess our faith in Christ (Acts 8:37) and be baptized for the remission of sins (Acts 2:38).  These are the things of God’s choice, and when men obey Him, he adds them to the church of His choice, not of men’s choice (Acts 2:47).

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