[bibletalk] Knowledge Brings Understanding and Appreciation

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From: Steve Preston <fpccpreston@...>
Date: Sat, 23 Feb 2008 05:31:04 -0800 (PST)
KNOWLEDGE BRINGS UNDERSTANDING AND APPRECIATION
By Charles R. Williams, Minister for Nashville Rd. Church of Christ, Gallatin  TN

Have you ever wondered why men’s clothes  have  buttons
on the left? Today there are millions of buttons of all
kinds that are inexpensively used in clothing, but when
they were first invented they were very  expensive  and
thus primarily worn by  the  rich.  Wealthy  women  had
maids who dressed them; therefore, the dressmakers  put
the buttons on the maid’s right. Since most people  are
right-handed, it is easier to push buttons on the right
through holes on the left. Buttons have  remained  that
way ever since even though it  has  lost  its  original
purpose. 

We Christians need to constantly examine  what we believe 
and what we practice religiously in light of
the scriptures. Sometimes we are guilty of doing things
just because that is the way it has  always  been  done
when in reality there  is  no  scriptural  basis.  Some
assume it must be some kind of requirement begun by God
long ago and that is why we  still  practice  it.  Many
years ago, a friend of mine preached for a small  rural
congregation where there was no  air  conditioning.  To
keep cool during services, they raised the windows  and
provided hand fans. To keep the flies  off  the  Lord’s
Supper table, they covered it with a sheet. Years later
the building was air conditioned, but they continued to
use the sheet even though  it  had  lost  its  purpose.
After more years went by, someone suggested they didn’t
need the sheet. They could  not  remember  why  it  was
there in the first place, but some refused to let it be
removed because it had always been  there.  Paul  said,
“Do not dispute over  doubtful  things,”  Romans  14:1.

There are some practices in religion that  some  assume
have always been around. The  denominational  world  is
surprised when they discover  that  instrumental  music
was not used in worship by  the  early  Christians  for
over 600 years. They are  also  surprised  to  discover
that most denominations today refused to  use  them  in
the early years of their beginning. Scripture  is  very
clear about what God has authorized  (Col.  3:15;  Eph.
5:19). 

Why are many coin banks shaped like  pigs?  Long ago, 
dishes and cookware in Europe were made of  dense orange 
clay called “pygg.” When people saved  coins  in
jars made of this clay, the jars became known as  “pygg
banks.” When an English potter misunderstood the  word,
he made a bank that resembled a pig, and it caught  on.

Sometimes we make things more difficult than they  need
to be. When  our  children  and  grandchildren  ask  us
simple questions,  they  deserve  truthful  and  simple
answers. For example, when  a  child  asks,  “Where  is
God,”  we  do  not  need  to  give  a   twenty   minute
presentation on the universe and the first, second, and
third heavens described in the Bible. A  simple  answer
like, “God is in  heaven…a  place  we  cannot  see.  He
watches and cares for us all the time.” Keep it simple,
keep it truthful. Through my years of teaching, I found
this works for adults as well. Happy learning.


In Christ, Steve Preston


 
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