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A B C - 1 2 3

A B C – 1 2 3

     No doubt the title of this article “grabbed” your attention. It is a common way of expressing the simplicity of things in a number of aspects. This is because our “A,B,C’s” are the building blocks of our alphabet, and therefore the means by which we convey our thoughts in word, written and spoken. Our “1,2,3’s” are the foundation of our number system with which we count and compute simple and complex mathematical equations.   This is where we begin in our learning and therefore it is important to master these so we can move forward in our education.  

     Back in 1970, five composers wrote a catchy little song for the Jackson 5 entitled “A B C” that reminds us of some of the “basics”.   It points out the “I before E, except after C” that might help us with our spelling.   It mentions the “Do, Re, Mi” that is definitely a plus to know in making or singing music.   It even points out the simple, yet factual point that 2 plus 2 equals 4. “A B C, It's easy as 1 2 3, as simple as Do re mi”, is the start of the chorus. This song, as were many in that era, is about the basics of young love.

       The basics are important in all areas, as one must have an understanding of the basics before one can advance or grow. This is also true as it relates to our needs in the spiritual realm.   Many are headed for eternity, and have not been “firmly grounded” in the faith. There are two passages that speak of being “grounded” in the N.T.     Both are penned by Paul the apostle, as these were given him by the Spirit.   Ephesians 3:17 is the 1st. That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, The 2nd is” Colossians 1:23. If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled, and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel, which ye have heard, and which was preached to every creature which is under heaven; whereof I Paul am made a minister;   Notice that both of these passages indicate that “faith” is the common factor here.

     This fits well, as Romans 10:17 clearly directs us to the source of faith. So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Faith is the most basic aspect of Christianity.   Romans 5:1 tells us what “faith” does for those that have proper faith. It justifies us. Therefore being justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ:   As has been pointed out, faith comes from the reading of the Word of God. This is a very basic concept. Strangely, some have completely missed this and determined that all one needs to do to be justified, is to believe.  They have confused “feelings” with “faith” because they have not fully grasped, embraced, and understood the basics.

     If one will but “read” and “study” the Word of God, and meditate on it, they will absorb the basics and will further advance in the knowledge of the truth.   We know that Jesus said in John 8:32: And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. But we needn’t forget what He stated just before in vs 31, as to where this “truth” comes from. Then said Jesus to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed This is basic – God’s Word contains truth. Couple this with what we read above in Romans 10:17, the basics are: God’s Word contains truth which will make one free from sin, if we do it.

       Faith also, is not simply believing. This too, is basic! James 2:19 shows that there can be a difference in belief and faith. Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.   How many of the “devils” would you say had faith?      The argument is made: “Well, they believed!”. They did, but as James 2:18 points out, faith will be seen by one’s works.   Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works.  It is basic, that what one believes (has faith in), will be shown in what they do.  

     James 1:22 directs us in regard to how to “show our faith”.   This passage tells us we must not only hear, but do the Word.   But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. In Mark 16:16, Jesus Himself stated what one will gladly do once he or she understands the basics, and seeks the remedy from sin.   They will do as Jesus, the Son of God directs. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.  This last part is equally important.

       The A B C’s or 1, 2, 3’s, -- the basics of Salvation are simple. One must hear the Word of God – John 6:44-45.  One must believe that Jesus is the Son of God – John 8:24.   One must repent of past sins – Acts 17:30. One must confess that Jesus is the Son of God – Romans 10:9-10. One must be baptized into Christ – Galatians 3:27-29. And, one must remain faithful until death – 2Timothy 4:6-8.   IF one has become an erring Christian by allowing sin into their lives, they must “repent and pray”, as Acts 8:22 directs.

     Let us help you with the A B C’s & 1, 2, 3’s of the gospel.   You must first become before you can be!   Then, as fellow-heirs of the promises of God, given in His Word, we can grow in knowledge together and serve God in the cause for which Christ gave His life.  

Dennis Strickland – Mooresville church of Christ

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