REFLECTIONS
by Al Maxey

Issue #385 ------- February 9, 2009
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Do not try to find a place free from tempta-
tions and troubles. Rather, seek a peace that
endures even when you are beset by various
temptations and tried by much adversity.

Thomas Ó Kempis {1379-1471}
The Imitation of Christ

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Her Husband With Her
Reflective Analysis of Genesis 3:6

Sometimes seemingly simple statements within Scripture can become the source of significant debate among the disciples of Jesus Christ. Such is the case with a phrase found in Genesis 3:6 --- "When the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes, and that the tree was desirable to make one wise, she took from its fruit and ate; and she gave also to her husband with her, and he ate" [NASB]. Those two little words -- "with her" -- have led to endless speculation among the scholars who seek to interpret God's inspired Word, and they have raised some interesting theological questions for us to ponder.

The primary focus of all these questions deals with the force of the preposition "with." Does this mean Adam was actually, physically present when Eve was tempted by Satan? Was he right there at her side when she gave in to this temptation and ate of the forbidden fruit? If so, why was he silent? Why didn't he take some action to prevent this deadly fall? OR ... can this preposition be interpreted in such a way as to remove Adam from the scene?! In other words, was Adam "with" Eve in some sense other than actual, physical proximity? How one answers this question has significant bearing on Adam's culpability with regard to his responsibility to both God and his wife, as well as who must take the brunt of the blame for the fall of mankind, the consequences of which are felt by us all. Thus, it is not an insignificant matter how one interprets this preposition. A reader from the state of Ohio wrote me last month: "Bro. Al, If you have a Reflections article in which you deal with Gen. 3:6 and the phrase 'with her,' please refer me to it. If you do not, would you be willing to do a study of this phrase? We're involved in a big discussion on this seemingly simple text. Was the man witness to the conversation between Eve and Satan or not?! Thank you in advance, because I know that you will present all points on the matter and provide an intelligent conclusion without any personal bias."

As we begin this study, it is rather interesting, and even enlightening, to note that not all versions of the Bible even preserve this particular phrase within the passage. Although most of the major versions, such as the KJV, NAB (St. Joseph edition), NASB, ESV, ASV, CEV and NIV, just to name a few, include this prepositional phrase, there are a few, such as the RSV, NEB and the Living Bible, that have chosen to completely exclude it from the text. In the ancient Hebrew text, though, the word for "with" does not appear, though it is implied. In the ancient Greek text (Septuagint), the preposition "with" (meta) does appear. Therefore, although it is somewhat problematic, most biblical scholars believe that the preposition clearly should be included in the text. Nevertheless, one will additionally discover that many commentaries on the market completely ignore the phrase in their interpretation of the passage, apparently regarding the statement as largely inconsequential and irrelevant. Some, however, do find the words to be significant to the proper interpretation of the passage, as well as the larger issue of responsibility for the fall.

There are clearly many aspects of this passage that would make fascinating studies in themselves. Who were Adam and Eve? Were they actual people, or do they appear in the OT literature as figurative representatives of early man? How long had they lived in the garden prior to the fall and their subsequent expulsion? Was it a brief time, or was it perhaps, as some have speculated, millions of years? Did Adam and Eve have a "belly button"? [Reflections #233]. We could look into the significance of the serpent as representative of Satan, and the curses that befell each of the characters in this story. What exactly was the forbidden fruit that these two people ate, and why was it forbidden? In what way did they "die" when they ate of it? There are so many avenues of thought one is sorely tempted to pursue, but I shall seek to limit this particular study to the specific question posed.

On the question as to whether Adam was physically present when his wife was being tempted by the serpent, and physically present when she made the choice to surrender to that temptation, there is, as one might well imagine, great disagreement among scholars. Some maintain that he most definitely was, others insist that he most definitely was not. Dr. John Gill (1690-1771) pointed out that most of the ancient Jewish commentators, those who bothered to weigh in on the matter at all, "inferred from hence that Adam was with her all the while" [Exposition of the Entire Bible]. Dr. Johann Keil (1807-1888) and Dr. Franz Delitzsch (1813-1890), in their classic Commentary on the Old Testament, observed, "She took of its fruit and ate, and gave to her husband by her (who was present), and he did eat." The Pulpit Commentary, on the other hand, declares "it is not likely" that Adam was present [vol. 1, p. 59]. Matthew Henry (1662-1714) concurs, saying, "It is probable that he was not with her when she was tempted, but that he came to her when she had eaten, and was prevailed upon by her to eat likewise." John Calvin (1509-1564) maintained that Adam arrived just as the temptation of his wife was ending. John Milton (1608-1674), in his monumental work Paradise Lost, clearly believed Adam and Eve to have been in separate locations when the latter was tempted. Indeed, this was one of his major premises in the work, and he wrote into his work quite a detailed "Separation Scene," at which time Adam and Eve parted company for a time (and it was during this time she was tempted and sinned). It was this separation of the two (Adam not being physically with Eve when she was tempted) that would be a major factor in Milton's theology concerning which of the two was more culpable before God.

There are a number of reasons why some scholars feel Adam was not actually present with his wife at this particular moment in time. For example, in the narrative found in Genesis 3:1-5, the serpent addresses itself only to the woman, never to the man. The conversation is entirely between Eve and the serpent. No mention is made of Adam actually being present at this time. This may well explain why later on God pronounced a curse upon Adam "because you have listened to the voice of your wife, and have eaten from the tree..." [Gen. 3:17]. The implication here, it is maintained, is that Adam could not have listened to the voice of the serpent for the simple reason that he was not there. Instead, he later listened to the voice of his wife, who may well have used the same arguments on him that the serpent had used on her. This would also explain, they say, why Adam, when confronted by the Lord, blamed his transgression on the woman, whereas Eve blamed hers upon the serpent [Gen. 3:12-13]. It is further believed that this separation of the two at this time would help explain what Paul meant when he wrote, "It was not Adam who was deceived, but the woman being quite deceived, fell into transgression" [1 Tim. 2:14]. So, "the serpent deceived Eve by his craftiness" [2 Cor. 11:3]. Yes, Adam too was led astray, but by his wife, NOT by the serpent. Or, so goes the argument. Thus, and this is the point in this particular study, there does seem to be some evidence, even if only circumstantial, that points to the likelihood that Adam may not have been physically present "with her" when his wife was tempted.

Even more troubling to a great many scholars and interpreters is the total silence and utter lack of intervention by Adam if in fact he was present, which suggests to them that he wasn't. Assuming that Adam was physically present, and that he was an actual witness to this devilish temptation of his wife by the serpent, "why did he not restrain Eve?" [The Pulpit Commentary, vol. 1, p. 59]. "Adam was with her all the while, and heard the discourse between the serpent and her, yet he did not interpose nor dissuade his wife from eating the fruit" [John Gill, Exposition of the Entire Bible]. If, in fact, he was there, and if, in fact, he remained silent and passive throughout, the question that comes immediately to mind is --- WHY?! "It is probable that he was not with her when she was tempted, for surely, if he had been, he would have interposed to prevent the sin" [Matthew Henry, Commentary on the Whole Bible]. One sexist writer on the Internet speculated, "This is what happens when man is silent and lets the woman direct conversation." That's a bit over the top, and yet one has to wonder what Adam was thinking if indeed he did choose to do nothing while witnessing Eve being led into transgression of God's holy will. If this was what transpired, then it most certainly compounds his own sin in the matter.

Some scholars simply cannot conceive of Adam doing this. Therefore, they take the position that he wasn't physically present at the time, but came upon the scene at the end of Eve's surrender to the wiles of the serpent. Therefore, Adam was "with her" when she offered him the fruit, but he was NOT "with her" when she was being seduced by the serpent. There is much to commend this interpretive view, in my estimation. Generally, one tends to take the phrase "with her" to mean either he was there the whole time, or he wasn't there at all (those who take this latter view try to explain the preposition "with" as signifying "a reference to their conjugal oneness" [Pulpit Commentary, vol. 1, p. 59], which is quite a stretch). Far more reasonable, it seems to me, and certainly far more consistent with the additional testimony of Scripture, is that Adam was not a witness to the temptation, but that he was "with her" almost immediately thereafter when Eve offered him some of the fruit to eat. This raises two great questions: Why did Eve offer her husband this fruit, and why did Adam accept?! Another highly fascinating question, raised in Matthew Henry's commentary, is: "What would have been the consequence if Eve only had transgressed?" I'll leave that one for you, the reader, to reflect upon!!

As for Eve's motivation in offering the forbidden fruit to Adam, the following observation by Matthew Henry is quite insightful: "Those that have themselves done ill are commonly willing to draw in others to do the same. As was the devil, so was Eve: no sooner a sinner, than a tempter." "As the prototype of all sinners, Eve felt impelled to lead Adam to participate in the same sin" [Henry Morris, p. 114]. Others are convinced that it may have been out of "good will, and not ill will, that she gave it to him" [John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible]. Having believed the lies of Satan, that this action of eating the fruit would bring only blessings her way, she sought to share those blessings with her beloved husband. If, in fact, Eve was deceived by Satan into believing these lies, and Scripture indicates she was, then there may well be some validity to this point of view. The alternative is to view Eve as someone who knowingly sought to destroy her husband along with herself; a wicked manipulator who sought only harm for her companion. Such evil, willful intent seems unlikely to me. I simply think she was duped into believing her actions would be beneficial to her in some way, a delusion that motivated her to try and share this "good fortune" with Adam.

Adam, however, appears to be another matter altogether. Whereas Eve was deceived, even by her own admission [Gen. 3:13], this was not stated with respect to Adam. His sin was more an abdication of his leadership by listening to the voice of his wife, rather than to the voice of his God [Gen. 3:17]. This suggests to many scholars a willful choice to submit to his wife in this matter, rather than to submit to God, which is why, in the view of many, Adam, rather than Eve, is charged with the greater sin. Eve was deceived; Adam was not. He knew what he was doing, and chose to do it anyway. Josephus, in his work "Antiquities of the Jews," wrote that Adam "weakly submitted to the counsel of his wife" [book 1, chapter 1, section 4]. The real question is: WHY? Countless theories have been put forth. Some suggest he was a "wimp," basically, and that his wife dominated the household. It is for this reason, they claim, that as part of the curse upon Eve the Lord said that "he shall rule over you" [Gen. 3:16], perhaps implying that this had not been the case previously. Those who endorse this view feel this may also be why the apostle Paul used the case of Adam and Eve as justification for the charge: "Let a woman quietly receive instruction with entire submissiveness. I do not allow a woman to teach or exercise authority over a man, but to remain quiet. For it was Adam who was first created, and then Eve. And it wasn't Adam who was deceived, but the woman, being quite deceived, fell into transgression" [1 Tim. 2:11-14].

Other scholars believe that Adam's motivation was far more noble, although his action was no less sinful in the sight of God. "Many have suggested that he did this out of love for Eve, choosing to share her sin and guilt rather than leaving her to face God's judgment alone. However, this motive would almost make him appear noble in sinning, and the Bible never implies such a thing" [Henry Morris, The Genesis Record, p. 114]. "Through a strong affection for his wife, so that she might not die alone, he did as she had done" [John Gill]. Again, this simply seems to be an effort by some to put a positive spin on an extremely negative situation. Even if it's true, it would still be contrary to the timeless truth that the one who loves father or mother, son or daughter, wife or life more than the Lord is not worthy of Him [Matt. 10:37; Luke 14:26]. Thus, even if we grant Adam these noble motives, his choice was still to submit to the voice of his wife rather than the voice of his God (a mistake that even Moses made, which almost cost him his life -- Reflections #34). That decision would prove deadly not only to Adam and Eve, but also to all mankind. "For by the transgression of the one the many died" [Rom. 5:15]. "For by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one" [vs. 17]. "So then through one transgression there resulted condemnation to all men ... For through one man's disobedience the many were made sinners" [vs. 18-19]. "For by a man came death ... for in Adam all die" [1 Cor. 15:21-22].

We can't conclude this study without making some mention of the view of John Milton (1608-1674) and his treatment of the fall of man in his work Paradise Lost. On Oct. 1, 1999, Skylar Hamilton Burris presented a rather scholarly, and highly interesting, paper at the "Southwest Conference on Christianity and Literature" in Abilene, Texas. The paper was titled --- "From Man's Effeminate Slackness It Begins": Uxoriousness and the Expansion of Genesis in John Milton's Paradise Lost (Click Here to read this paper in its entirety). One of John Milton's primary premises was Adam's uxoriousness --- i.e., "his devoted submission to a wife he should instead rule" [Burris]. The word, by definition, simply means "dotingly fond of or submissive to one's wife" [Webster's New World Dictionary]. Milton clearly took some liberties with the biblical account, nevertheless he presents a fascinating theory as to the transgression of Adam.

John Milton's view was that woman was clearly inferior to man, and therefore it was completely unacceptable for man to be in submission to woman. "For Milton, excessive devotion to one's equal could never be so great a sin as excessive devotion to one's inferior" [Burris]. Adam's rightful place was to lead, not to follow; to rule over, rather than submit to. In Paradise Lost, having been warned that "a tempter" was roaming about, Adam nevertheless allowed his wife to physically separate herself from him for a time, as this was something she sought. This was characterized by Milton as the "effeminate slackness" of Adam, "who should better hold his place." "Adam should insist on accompanying Eve in order to protect her; instead, Adam so fears to offend her that he allows her reasoning to supplant his own" [Burris]. Therefore, Eve walks into a trap, and yet Adam permits it because he was foolishly "overcome with female charm," writes Milton. This was also the main reason he gave in to Eve and later ate of the forbidden fruit. "Adam's sin is not deception, but uxoriousness" [Burris]. Notice God's rebuke of Adam (as found in Paradise Lost) for not being "with her," and for letting her encounter the tempter alone, and then also for listening to her voice rather than heeding his Creator's:

For John Milton, the "fall of man" was due to the uxoriousness of Adam -- "he is excessively devoted to an inferior" [Burris]. It is a bowing before the lesser (Eve), rather than the greater (God). He wasn't "with her," where he should have been, protecting her from the wiles of the serpent. She wished to be separate for a time, to which he submitted, just as he later submitted to her offer of the fruit. "Thou didst resign thy manhood," God tells Adam, which resignation resulted in the "ruin of man." Whether one accepts Milton's expansion of the Genesis account or not, there is no denying the fact that Adam "listened to the voice" of his wife, rather than heeding the voice of his God, and this would prove his undoing ... as well as ours! May we learn from the mistakes of our "first parents." Their story is recorded for our benefit, lest we repeat their folly.

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Down, But Not Out
A Study of Divorce and Remarriage
in Light of God's Healing Grace

A 200 page book by Al Maxey
Publisher: (301) 695-1707
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Readers' Reflections

Great New Book --- I would like to inform all of my Reflections readers of a wonderful new book that will be released in early April. It is written by a great friend and brother in Christ, as well as a faithful supporter of my Reflections ministry, by the name of Jack Drain, who lives in Texas and is a member of the Richland Hills Church of Christ. Jack is a retired Lt.Col. in the US Air Force, and was a fighter pilot during the Korean and Vietnam wars. His new book is titled Life On A Short Fuse, and is a must read. A special web site has been created that tells about this book, and also provides some great pictures of Jack. That site is: www.mylifeonloan.com. I was honored by Jack when he asked me to read the manuscript prior to publication and to write an endorsement for his book, which will appear in the book itself, and which may be read by clicking on the "Testimonials" tab on his web site (with another quote of mine to be found by clicking on the tab "Meet Jack Drain"). The Scriptures tell us to render honor to whom honor is due [Rom. 13:7], and Jack is certainly a man worthy of that honor, as he is one of America's true heroes!! I urge all of you to order your copy of this book today!! --- Al Maxey

From a Reader in California:

Dear Brother Maxey, Please send me the CD for the Maxey-Broking Debate on the topic of Patternism. Also, I would like to have the 2008 Reflections CD. My check is enclosed. I enjoy reading your weekly Reflections greatly. I pray God's blessing on you and your family for this new year.

From a Reader in California:

Dear Brother Al, I pray for you, your wife Shelly, and your Reflections ministry daily! You are truly a voice crying out in the wilderness! Please, do not ever let the vocal minority get you down!! As for the Churches of Christ directory -- it makes me sick at heart! It is an embarrassment, and totally opposite of what we should believe and stand for!

From a Reader in Oklahoma:

Brother Al, There are a few things the Bible says God hates: and a divisive spirit is one of them!! The very idea that these self-appointed "Defenders of the Faith" would make a decision like this as to who should or shouldn't be considered as belonging to the saved is absolutely ridiculous! These guys, by their casting of entire congregations out of the new directory (thousands of Christians), are treading on extremely thin ice! Prayerfully, cooler heads will eventually prevail and these men will wake up before the Lord's Body is split even further and becomes a total laughing stock to the world.

From a Reader in Louisiana:

Dear Bro. Al, I am deeply depressed at the action taken by Carl Royster and the 21st Century Christian publishing company in removing our most prominent and progressive congregations from the new directory! Such an action places those leaders responsible, in my view, even below the reasoning capacity of cavemen. This legalistic patternism, with its big hatchet mentality, is so sad to witness. Can't they grasp the fact that unless we are willing to change, we will continue to lose our members? They bemoan the growing decline in our numbers, and yet who wants to be "ruled" by such stubborn, rigid and totally inflexible zealots?! This action on their part with regard to the new directory has upset me so much that I can hardly even type this message! One thing is absolutely certain -- I will NEVER order anything else from 21st Century "Christian." I just knew we were in trouble when I learned that this whole project of compiling a directory had been transferred to those people in Tennessee! I could see this coming!

From a Christian Church Minister in California:

Bro. Al, Your last article was a straightforward exposÚ of a blatant Pharisaical decision by the new directory compilers!! With these guys, it is 1906 all over again!! And the same actions today will get the same results as then -- division. Those 21 congregations who were removed -- who have boldly ditched that tired old anti-instrument barrier -- are to be commended for their NON-denominational leadership!! Bless them!! I know a great God-loving fellowship that will be thrilled to welcome them and include them!!

From a Member at Richland Hills:

Dear Brother Al, I'm a proud member of the Richland Hills Church of Christ, and I applaud my elders for what they have done in regard to being a "both/and" congregation (with respect to instrumental/a cappella services). It is wonderful seeing folks enter and leave the main auditorium loving and encouraging each other as they each attend whichever worship style they prefer. As one who comes from a rather long line (several generations) of Church of Christ elders and members from the "No-Sunday-School, No-Fellowship-Hall, No-Orphanage-Support" wing of our heritage, I am proud to see our congregation take on and move beyond these types of "issues" so that my children do NOT have to grow up feeling they have to try and defend such legalistic traditions.

From an Elder at Richland Hills:

Bro. Al, I too was deeply disturbed by our ouster from the directory. It seems they were just looking for a reason to exclude us. If you want to include someone, you will find a way. Similarly, if you want to exclude someone, you will also find an excuse. It seems strange that a congregation with 2160 people in its a cappella assembly last Sunday (Feb. 1, 2009) is not included in a list of a cappella congregations!! It's just as I read forty years ago: "We say we believe in congregational autonomy, unless a congregation actually practices it." May God continue to bless the work you are doing.

From a Reader in Texas:

Dear Bro. Maxey, I have not written in a while, but wanted to write a quick note to let you know that I too am disappointed over Richland Hills Church of Christ being excluded from the new directory. My parents and my brother are members there, and I frequently visit. I know that many people don't agree with some of the things that Rick Atchley teaches, however I have never found any of his teachings to be unbiblical. He is a fine man and minister who has a genuine passion for the Truth of God's Word. I've learned over the past several years (much of this from your writings and teachings) that many of the things taught in Churches of Christ are more traditional than biblical. One other thing I want to share is that I recently stumbled onto an audio file of a debate which Olan Hicks participated in back in 1977 on MDR. I must say that, except for you, Bro. Hicks is one of the best debaters I have ever heard. It was quite interesting listening to him as he pointed out many of the fallacies of the traditional view on MDR. I have heard many people say that persons such as Al Maxey and Olan Hicks try to twist the Scriptures to say something different than what they really say. I personally believe that it is the people on the other side of the debate who are doing the twisting of Scripture. I don't know why they want to contradict the clear Bible statements that you make. Brother Maxey, I look forward to your Reflections every week, and I still plan to visit the Cuba Avenue Church of Christ in the near future. Thanks again for all you do, brother. May God bless you and Shelly.

From a Reader in Texas:

Bro. Maxey, I'm presently in the process of leaving the Non-Class Churches of Christ, and my decision to leave has been greatly influenced by the LUNACY of all our traditional standards of fellowship. For example: about two years ago the Non-Class congregation where I am presently attending sold its building to a local Non-Institutional (with Bible Class) congregation. At that time a verbal agreement was made between the leaders of these two groups that we would be permitted to continue to use the baptistery (we were moving into temporary facilities that had no such accommodations). Some time later, one of our elders was contacted by the NI group and asked if we'd be willing to send someone over to lead singing for them on a certain Sunday morning. Our elder refused, stating, "I do not believe that anyone from here would be comfortable leading songs over there." As a result of this incident, the NI group has rescinded its offer to let us use the baptistery! Bro. Maxey, just imagine how much farther we could carry the cause of Christ if we would all just stop "biting and devouring each other" [Gal. 5:15]. Incidentally, I also am extremely concerned by the 21st Century Christian's abandonment of those congregations that have chosen to add an instrumental service. I view this "hang up" of these people as being no different from the example I gave above over Bible classes. They are simply two symptoms of the same underlying problem. Just count me: "Fed Up in Texas"!!

From a New Reader in [Unknown]:

Dear Bro. Al, I would like to subscribe to your weekly Reflections mailings. I ran across your web site when searching for the history of the "Old Paths Advocate." I'm a member of the One Cup churches, and I wanted to let you know that not all of us are as divisive as the vocal brothers who write in the "Old Paths Advocate." I hope that you will please keep that in mind -- that there are some of us out there who hold differing beliefs, but who are still desiring unity with others as we work together to accomplish God's work. I am wanting to subscribe to your Reflections so I can keep my mind open to views expressed outside of the One Cup walls!

From a New Reader in Alabama:

Brother Maxey, I am a preacher in --------, Alabama. I am now very grace-oriented in my preaching, after having spent years of viewing the Scriptures through legalistic lenses. There are many of us who not only have been freed from legalism, but who are also diligently working each day to bring the release of others as well. Thank you so much for your work and for all you do, and please keep it up. Also, please add me to your mailing list for Reflections.

From a Reader in Michigan:

Dear Brother Al, Thank you for your writings! I read each of your Reflections and have a file in which I save them all. Your spirit, which is the spirit of Christ, is so evident in your writings. Keep on keeping on for Him.

From a Reader in Arkansas:

Dear Brother Al, As to the problem of decreasing membership within the Churches of Christ, I have seen this happening for many years. I am not really surprised by it, because we have promoted certain "tests of fellowship" that simply are NOT founded on the Bible, and thus have moved away from our foundation. I believe the problem is: the quality of our leadership. Frankly, the Church of Christ is the victim of decades of poor leadership, which is a result of our misguided method of choosing elders. As for worship styles that may differ from where I attend: I have no problem with such at all. Unfortunately, understanding and accepting such differences among believers is not our "long suit" in Churches of Christ.

From a Minister in Tennessee:

Bro. Al, First, I don't know where you get your graphics, but they always fit the topic about which you write. Second, as you said in your last article, we are the frog. We are cooking in our own juices, and, sadly, most don't even want to know it, or want to understand it. Third, we in the Churches of Christ seem to be a people who feed on the irrelevant. Fourth, we have failed to realize that we have not preached and practiced the Bible only. A lot of our doctrine and practice is little more than cultural tradition. Fifth, our own hermeneutic (CENI) has violently turned on us and is systematically eating us alive. Sixth, we've become the very thing we have condemned for the past 100+ years: a big, sick denomination that is getting smaller every day. Seventh, the gospel being preached in too many of our congregations is NOT the "good news," but is rather only "music" to the ears of Satan!

From a Reader in Tennessee:

Dear Bro. Maxey, I enjoyed your Reflections article on "Checklist Churchianity." You are right on! I keep telling everyone who will listen that the way the United States is right now, we Christians all need to join together regardless of our religious affiliations. There is an underlying movement in this country to squash anyone believing in God or Jesus Christ. A person is protected if they are a Muslim, Hindu, Atheist, etc. However, Christians are losing more and more rights every day. I just wish the Churches of Christ would wake up and be more inclusive. Thank you for all you do for our Lord's cause, and for the rest of us who at times can be so stubborn.

From an Elder in Missouri:

Brother Al, It was my understanding that the directory was for information purposes -- to provide Christians information they wanted in order to make an educated decision all on their own. I think come Judgment Day many who assemble in a building with the name Church of Christ on the sign out front will be shocked and utterly surprised to find that there are indeed Christians that assemble elsewhere and even under other names who will be granted entrance into Heaven. Thankfully, none of us will be judged based upon the name that is printed on the sign, nor on which assembly we associated with. Instead, Jesus Christ says that He will judge us based on our own deeds and, more importantly, on our relationship with Him. I really hope these brethren who produced this new directory will recant and go back to providing information rather than making judgments.

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