THE MARKS OF A CHRISTIAN
“Parteth the hoof……and cheweth the cud” [Leviticus 11:3]
What are the distinguishing marks of a Christian? Sikhs and religious Jews are recognized by their dress. Moslems, by their uses of “Peace be upon him” when speaking of Mohammed. But how does one recognize a Christian? This verse gives us a hint.
The Lord put a difference between the clean and unclean animals. The clean animal was recognized by two marks; it parted the hoof, and it chewed the cud. In other words, the distinguishing marks concerned the foot and the mouth.
The Christian likewise should be instantly distinguished in society by his holy talk and his holy walk. Paul encouraged the Colossians to let their “speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt” [Colossians 4:6]. He should be God’s saltshaker, helping to season the language of society.
The clean animal chewed the cud, suggesting that the believer is to digest and meditate on the Word of God as his daily food. With this Word in his heart, he will have a holy conversation on his lips.
The clean animal parted the hoof. It had a peculiar walk; it was different from other animals. At one time, the Christian walked according to the course of this world. Now, transformed by God’s grace, he is to walk in love, circumspectly, as a child of light.
Be warned that the Christian must pass both tests. To have only the talk is hypocrisy. To have the walk without the testimony is self-righteousness. Some people can talk like a saint, but inconsistent actions damage the testimony. Worse is the one with “Foot-and-mouth disease” _ neither his lips nor life is holy.
The believer who walks and talks right may not be the most popular fellow according to the world, but he will be blessed by God.
“The lion from Bashan rushes upon the flock; one is seized, and is soon within the jaws of the lion! This prey is enough; the lion is satisfied, and retires; the flock is saved by the death of one. This incidental substitution does not, indeed, show forth the manner of our Substitute’s suffering; but it is an illustration of the fact that one dying saved the whole flock. [Andrew Bonar in Leviticus p60].
“The only possessions you can bring to heaven are your loved ones” [Alexander Simpson].
GETTING THE GOSPEL OUT
The United States has an amazing Highway system. It was mostly the idea of President Eisenhower (1953-1961). It is said that in case of a war situation the country would have an adequate road system to carry troops and equipment. Similarly, the Romans were also great road builders. From about the fourth century B.C. they erected a system of major and minor roads. The Appian Way, or Via Appia, was one of the first and parts of it can still be seen.
The Roman roads, while primarily built for military purposes, had a vital part to play in Christian Gospel outreach. Jesus told His disciples to spread the Gospel from Jerusalem, Judea, Samaria, and to the uttermost parts of the earth. This would have been impossible without proper roads. In the providence of God, the Roman roads carried a succession of Christian preachers with the good news of the Gospel. Hence, people like Paul were able to traverse many lands on the roads built by their enemies. It is marvellous how God can overrule and use the enemy for His purposes.
A WORD OF APPRECIATION
The Toronto church has been broadcasting on sermonaudio.com for several years, but in this last year, we have been relying more and more on the internet due to the pandemic. Today we want to pay tribute to our team of technicians who do such an excellent job of getting the broadcasts out each Sunday.
The team is headed up by Elder Jonathan McAnally and assisted by Daniel Vautour, Joaquim Rodrigues and Samuel McAnally. They are working with an impressive array of equipment – three computers and four cameras. With these, they have the ability to project the hymn words and other graphics on the pulpit wall as well as the points of the pastor’s sermon. While others may be watching comfortably at home, the IT team must be there for every service to ensure the broadcasts’ smooth operation. Many thanks, brethren, for your faithful and devoted service. It is much appreciated.
“For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have shewed toward His name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister” [Hebrews 6:10].