Vol.V No.I Pg.3
March 1968

What Is Relevant?

Robert F. Turner

When the Pharisees continued to doubt the divinity of Christ despite obvious proof, the man who had been blind said, "Why herein is a marvelous thing, that ye know not from whence he is, and yet he hath opened mine eyes." (Jn. 9:30)

Somehow these words came to mind recently when I was told that the church, baptism, Lord's Supper, etc., were no longer "relevant." And what is "relevant"? "Just be a follower of Christ, worship and obey Him."

Why herein is a marvelous thing!! The church one reads about in the N. T. consists of those who follow the Lord. The "called out" "set apart" people (1 Pet. 2:9) who have been separated from the world by virtue of this very distinction -- that they are followers of Christ. And how did they become followers of Him? They obeyed the call of His gospel. (2 Thes. 2:14, Acts 2:37-41) These are the children of God by faith in Christ Jesus, "for as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ." (Gal. 3:26-27)

When someone answers, "I mean, just practice the sermon on the mount" I simply turn and read some of that sermon (Matt. 5:6:7:) and find out immediately that the excuse maker doesn't like that any better than he likes baptism, or other things Christ asks His followers to practice.

"Worship and obey Christ" are very empty words in the mouth of one who really means, "worship your self, and obey your own inclinations." How can one obey Christ without giving heed to the things Christ commands? This means we have an external authority -- something outside our own feelings on a given subject. We must turn to the words of Christ, the revelation of His will, and become subject thereto.

What "worship" is this that consists of things that tickle MY ears, and please MY feelings? The Lord says to partake of the bread and fruit of the vine "in remembrance of me." (I Cor. 11:23-f.) So -- we ignore the memorial He requested, and set about establishing some sort of "Easter" festival -- "because we love Him so much, and wish to worship Him." To worship -- whom??

The Pharisees could not see the truth because they did not want to see anything contrary to their selfish hypocritical ways. Following some pointed remarks by our Lord on this subject, they asked, "Are we blind also?" (Jn. 9:40-41) And Jesus replied, "If ye were blind, ye should have no sin: but now ye say, We see; therefore your sin remaineth."

It is an ultra-conservative modernist (?) who makes "follow Christ" relevant today, meaning only to reduce Christ's teachings to what he thinks important. His more modern brothers have long since dropped the idea of divine authority, and proclaim "God is Dead!"

(Bro. Keeble said, "That's strange; I was just talking to Him this morning, and He wasn't even sick!")

Better give attention to His word that will judge us. THAT'S RELEVANT!