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The Fundamentals of Leadership Class

If you are looking for a place to reflect upon & devel-
op your leadership skills please join us during the fall
quarter. We will meet in the library during our Sun-
day morning Bible Class time in Sep, Oct and Nov. If
you have any questions please see John Rakestraw.


When Job’s “friends” tried to comfort him with their many platitudes, they surely thought they were speaking the words God had given them. However, God told them, “the Lord spoke to Eliphaz, Bildad and Zophar, ye have not spoken of me the thing that is right as my servant Job hath.” They were commanded to offer burnt offerings and have Job pray for them. ( Job 42:7-8) They had misrepresented God’s teaching but seemingly without the intention to twist, pervert or falsify the intended meaning.

A step beyond that is what sometimes happens in the secular world during the selling of a house or auto which is intentional misrepresentation. Libel is the attack on the good name or reputation of another in the printed or written word. It is anything that defames or maliciously damages someone by misrepresentation. Slander is nearly the same definition except it is done orally.

The unauthorized use of the language and thoughts of another by representing them as one’s own is called plagiarism. This has been seen lately in the news and has been done by college professors, campaign managers and celebrities. Often it may be caused by ignorance, lack of research, laziness and vanity. It still needs to be acknowledged and apologized

Perhaps this tendency to take the easy route is one of the many reasons God told the New Testament Church, “Let not many of you become teachers, my brethren, knowing we will incur a stricter judgement.” ( Js 3:1) Don Campbell, a former preacher for this group of Christians and from time to time a contributor to our bulletin, is one of the most insightful and prolific authors in our brotherhood. He writes an article every day of the year. This should astonish anyone who thinks about that. It is hard to write one a week for most of us.

It is true that there are those who misrepresent and steal the words and thoughts of others by libel, slander and plagiarism with bad motives. However, when one writes on a well-known topic, there is the innocent possibility of using very similar language. I believe that one’s supposed original thoughts are probably the accumulation of all the information one has heard and read over a lifetime and which is personalized by life’s experiences. When we write or speak on a topic, we must be careful to avoid the exact same words and phrases without proper attribution. As Christians we must be sure what we say or write is not a misrepresentation of what God intended.

—Jim Bailey


Between lost and found there is a scary emotional roller coaster that can take one from frustration to paralysis to grief to joy in a very short time.  We tend to think that it is bad to lose money or an object but when that which is lost is a friend, relative, spouse, or a child, we realize immediately what is really important.

In the first recorded instance of lost and found, the order was actually reversed. Adam and Eve found themselves in a wonderful paradise which was quickly lost due to sin and disobedience.  Down through history variations of this theme were repeated in both secular and Biblical accounts. Some even found then lost then found again as in friendships.

We remember several Biblical characters who experienced finding and losing—Joseph, King Saul, Ruth, Esther, Paul, Peter, etc, etc.  Jesus taught us spiritual lessons about lost and found through parables of the sheep, the coin and especially the son (prodigal). ( Lk 15)  In that same chapter, he tells us, “…there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.” ( v 10)

The preacher who conducted my uncle’s funeral could not remember his source of the following story, so I’ll attribute it to “unknown.”  It seems the parents of a four-year old took him to a playground where he ran and played to total exhaustion.  As he fought off sleep the more agitated he became and proclaimed loudly that he wasn’t tired and didn’t need a nap.  However, he did soon fall asleep and his parents took him home to his bed without awakening him.  When he awoke, he didn’t understand how he was at the playground one minute and in his bed the next.

This is a great lesson for immersed believers.  We sometimes think we have found a complete life here and dread losing it.  We struggle with death, but when we do die and awaken, we find that our Lord has lovingly carried us to eternal glory in his arms and that we have lost little and gained everything. As the hymn AMAZING GRACE says, “ I once was lost, but now am found.”

—Jim Bailey