Church of Christ
Mission USA


By Ron Boatwright

      Beverage alcohol is the number one drug problem in the USA.  What is said about alcohol can apply to all the illegal drugs: marijuana, heroine, methamphetamine, LSD, opium, etc.  The devil's favorite liquid includes: beer, wine, whisky, brandy, vodka, tequila, gin, rum, etc.  Proverbs 20:1 says, "Wine is a mocker, strong drink is a brawler, and whoever is led astray by it is not wise."  Some of the bad benefits of alcohol include: diseased bodies, crime, divorces, fear, beatings, shame, humiliation, fetal alcohol syndrome, cirrhosis of the liver, broken homes, hungry and naked children, murder, robbery, rape, poverty, homeless people, murder on highways, and multiplied millions of souls lost in Hell.  According to NHTSA in 2002, 17,419 people were killed in auto crashes involving alcohol, an average of one every 30 minutes.  In 2001 more than 500,000 people were injured in crashes involving alcohol, an average of one person injured every 2 minutes.  When the harm done by drinking is so prevalent and obvious, what makes one want to defend such a sinful practice?

      Those who wish to drink alcohol will go to almost any length to justify the use of it.  Habakkuk 2:15 says, "Woe to him who gives drink to his neighbor."  A person drinks alcohol because of the effects it has on his body.  Some in trying to justify "social drinking" argue that a little drinking is not wrong, you cannot do wrong in moderation.  One cannot lie or steal in moderation.  One cannot commit adultery every now and then and still go to heaven.  Drunkenness is wrong and is a matter of degree of intoxication.  If 5 drinks will make one "sot drunk;" one drink certainly impairs one to a certain degree.  One is simply more incapacitated than the other.  Alcohol is a narcotic drug requiring more and more consumption to satisfy the craving it creates.  Even a small amount is sufficient to start deadening the control centers in the brain.  Isa 28:7 says, "But they also have erred through wine, and through intoxicating drink."

      Alcohol is the way of eternal damnation.  A devil's hell beckons from the first drink onward.  Alcohol's most devastating cost is the loss of souls in eternity.  Paul wrote, "Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these, adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresis, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revelings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God" (Galatians 5:19-21).

           ("Living Bread" publication of Chestnut Grove church of Christ, Dover, TN)


Life Is A Great Journey

By Perry Sexton

      In the great "faith chapter," Hebrews 11, we read of those of faith who "confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth" (v. 13).  "For they that say such things declare plainly that they seek a country" (Heb 11:14).  In this life we may take some great journeys: journeys into foreign countries, world cruises, and some even to the moon.  But the greatest of all journeys is the one that begins at conception.  We make this journey, not by foot or car or any other physical means of travel, but by how we live our lives.

Life Is a Very Serious Journey

      No matter how important a journey of physical travel may be, life itself is the greatest journey.  An ambassador may travel to foreign lands preventing wars and saving lives.  But, life itself is the most serious journey of all and many are wasting their lives on the pleasures of sin, not even considering the enormous cost (Matt. 16:26).  We are warned:  "Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him. {16} For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. {17} And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever" (I John 2:15‑17).  Further, our Savior cautioned: "No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon" (Mat. 6:24); "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; …" (Mat 6:33).

      Our soul is our most valuable possession (Matt. 16:26).  If we lose our soul, we lose everything.  It seems most handle their financial affairs more seriously than they do their own souls.  In this journey of the soul we need to be wise investors: seeking the true riches and rewards of life (Matt. 6:19‑21; Col. 3:2).  Traveling on: "To an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you" (I Pet. 1:4), i.e., the faithful.

This Journey, Though at Times Seems Long, Is Very Brief

      Years are fleeting: "Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow.  For what is your life?  It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away" (James 4:14).  Job said: "Man that is born of woman is of few days and full of trouble" (Job 14:1).  The young die also.  I know of many.  Consider how many you know.  Please read Ecclesiastes 12 and 11:9, 10.
The End of this Great Journey Is Certain

      "For the living know that they shall die" (Eccl. 9:5 cp. Heb. 9:27).  The destination is Heaven or Hell (Matt. 25:46, there is no middle ground).  Who are those journeying to Heaven?  Answer: Those who obey God (Matt. 7:21, Heb. 5:9, Mk. 16:15, 16).  Who are the ones journeying to Hell?  Answer: Those who never obey the gospel (II Thess. 1:7‑9; Matt. 7:22, 23); those who do obey the gospel, but are unfruitful (Matt. 25 cp. Rev. 21:8; II Pet. 2:20‑22).

      This journey is difficult at times, but Heaven will surely be worth it all (Rom. 8:18; I John 3:1‑3; John 14:1‑3).  Where are YOU going on your life's journey???  If you should die this day, which would be your destination?  Heaven or Hell (cp. Gal. 6:7; II Cor. 5:10).  Some prerequisites to Heaven: Desire (Matt. 5:6); Honesty (Luke 8:15); Courage (Rev. 21:8); Truth (John 8:32); Obedience (Matt. 7:21).  Are you on the right road (Matt. 7:13, 14)?  ♥