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Pioneer and Bell Church of Christ


In Genesis 4:9, when God asked where Abel was, Cain answered, "I know not: am I my brother's keeper?" Cain was the father of the movement to deny responsibility for the well-being of each other's body and soul. Those of us who are unconcerned with the well-being of our fellow man, and have the opportunity to prevent harm to their body and soul, are saying, "Am I my brother"s keeper?" God has answered this question with a resounding "Yes!" 

In Leviticus 19:17, God tells the Jews that they are not to hate their brother, should rebuke their neighbor, and not bear sin because of them. In Matthew 22:39, Jesus told the Jews that to love our neighbor as ourselves is the second greatest commandment. Paul tells the Philippians in Philippians 2:4 that they were not to look to their own things but to look to the things of others. In Galatians 6:1, Paul tells us that if any man be overtaken in any trespass, we who are spiritual are to restore such a one in the spirit of gentleness. To convert one who has erred from the truth is to save a soul from death (James 5:19-20). 

I believe you can see from the above that we who claim to be Christians are required to assist one another when in need and are to confront sin when we are in its presence. How do you justify being silent when you know that "The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all nations that forget God." (Psalm 9:17)? How can we the people encourage others in their sin and let them think they are all right (Romans 1:32)? What will you say to God when you remained silent in the sinner's presence? When you had the opportunity to gently tell them that what they were doing was sinful, but did not and in some cases even encouraged them in their wrongdoing. How different are you from the rich man who passed Lazarus in his sick state and did nothing (Luke 16:9-31)? Maybe we do not do what is required because we have lost the ability to blush at wrongdoing (Jeremiah 6:15) and do not think it really matters. Have we not witnessed our nation redefine that which is sin as something that is right, and if we do not agree then we are sinning (Isaiah 5:20)? Never forget that sin is commission as well as omission. When we fail to identify sin as sin we are guilty of the sin of omission. We who are Christians must take a stand and label sin as sin. If we do not, we take our stand with Cain and we find ourselves asking God are we our brother's keeper? 

Charles Royal, Decatur AL

"And the LORD said unto Cain, Where is Abel thy brother? And he said, I know not: Am I my brother's keeper?"

"Thou shalt not hate thy brother in thine heart: thou shalt in any wise rebuke thy neighbor, and not suffer sin upon him."

"And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself."

"Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others."

"Brethren, if a man be overtaken in a fault, ye which are spiritual, restore such an one in the spirit of meekness; considering thyself, lest thou also be tempted."

"Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him;" "Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins."

"The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God."

"Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them."

"And I say unto you, Make to yourselves friends of the mammon of unrighteousness; that, when ye fail, they may receive you into everlasting habitations." He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much. "If therefore ye have not been faithful in the unrighteous mammon, who will commit to your trust the true riches?" "And if ye have not been faithful in that which is another man's, who shall give you that which is your own?" "No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon." "And the Pharisees also, who were covetous, heard all these things: and they derided him." "And he said unto them, Ye are they which justify yourselves before men; but God knoweth your hearts: for that which is highly esteemed among men is abomination in the sight of God." "The law and the prophets were until John: since that time the kingdom of God is preached, and every man presseth into it." "And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail." "Whosoever putteth away his wife, and marrieth another, committeth adultery: and whosoever marrieth her that is put away from her husband committeth adultery." "There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen, and fared sumptuously every day:" "And there was a certain beggar named Lazarus, which was laid at his gate, full of sores," And desiring to be fed with the crumbs which fell from the rich man's table: moreover the dogs came and licked his sores. "And it came to pass, that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels into Abraham's bosom: the rich man also died, and was buried;" "And in hell he lift up his eyes, being in torments, and seeth Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom." "And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame." "But Abraham said, Son, remember that thou in thy lifetime receivedst thy good things, and likewise Lazarus evil things: but now he is comforted, and thou art tormented." "And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence." "Then he said, I pray thee therefore, father, that thou wouldest send him to my father's house:" "For I have five brethren; that he may testify unto them, lest they also come into this place of torment." "Abraham saith unto him, They have Moses and the prophets; let them hear them." "And he said, Nay, father Abraham: but if one went unto them from the dead, they will repent." "And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead."

"Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush: therefore they shall fall among them that fall: at the time that I visit them they shall be cast down, saith the LORD."

"Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!"