Carolina Messenger

Want to be a strong Christian? Tired of reading religious articles that have little to no Bible in them? You need to check out the Carolina Messenger!

We are a religious publication that has been around since 1994, formerly known as the Palmetto Messenger. We are affiliated with doctrinally sound churches of Christ. We hope these articles will be of great spiritual benefit to you. Feel free to distribute them to others, provided that they not be altered in any way and proper credit is given to the paper and the author. To God may all glory and honor be given!

Mission: To teach the Word of God plainly and clearly in every article. To up hold the Bible as the verbally inspired Word of God and our authority in all matters of religion. To please God rather than man. To instill in people habits of thought that promotes good morality and Christian character. To oppose error either within or without the church. To be open to discussion of Biblical questions and to hear each honest question with love for the questioner and love for the truth. To teach the truth in love. To have positive Bible centered lessons that impart faith building knowledge to the reader. Our purpose is not to be in competition with any of the number of good papers that exist within the brotherhood today, but to compliment them. Our purpose is not to be a faultfinding, negative, argumentative paper. We will not turn our backs on controversy, but refuse to make this the primary purpose of the Carolina Messenger.

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Government and Capital Punishment — Jon Mitchell, Editor (Editorial: March/April, 2020)

Christians harmed at the hands of evildoers who were given the promise, “‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay’ says the Lord” (Rom. 12:19) can therefore look to the governmental authorities of their countries as “God’s minister, an avenger to execute wrath on him who practices evil” (Rom. 13:4). It is for this reason that government “does not bear the sword in vain” (Rom. 13:4). Consider the ramifications of this biblical principle. We should remember that swords are weapons. Weapons are used to take people’s lives. By saying governmental authorities do not bear these weapons “in vain” within the context of being an avenger of God to execute wrath upon those who practice evil (Rom. 13:4), God shows that governmental authorities have the right to take the lives of those who are wicked without it being held against them as sin, since sin is ultimately the most vain and meaningless act in which one can involve themselves (Rom. 6:23; Rev. 21:8). Thus, we must not consider capital punishment to be inherently sinful. The likelihood of one’s life being forfeit at the hands of the government as a direct result of doing wrong can be a powerful motivator to do right (Rom. 13:3-4).

Read the rest of my editorial on the biblical role of government concerning capital punishment in the current issue of the Carolina Messenger by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com In continuing our series of editorials on what the Bible says about government, we now turn to the issue of capital punishment. God inspired Paul to command us to bless our persecutors, repay no o…

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The Moral Argument For God’s Existence — Dewayne Bryant, Ph.D.

Human beings universally recognize a moral standard. Without it, labeling anything as moral or immoral would be completely illogical. To say that something is right or wrong is to make an implicit claim that a standard exists and others must also recognize this standard. If this standard exists, then there must be a cause for it. We might sum this up in the statement, “Without God, objective morality does not exist.”

Read the rest of Dewayne Bryant's thought-provoking article on how morality proves the existence of God in the current issue of the Carolina Messenger by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com Whether or not God exists is the most important question for humanity. If he does exist and the Christian Bible has it right, our moral behavior must reflect God’s intentions for his creation. If h…

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Women of the Bible: Mary and Martha — Samantha Harvey

Jesus once said, “For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks” (Luke 6:45). What do Martha’s words tell us about her heart? It first tells us that her priorities need to be adjusted. Samuel was told, “…the Lord looks at the heart” (1 Sam. 16:7). Jesus loved Martha and He obviously saw that Martha’s heart was on the right track, but she needed more teaching. Martha was distracted about many things and was missing out on the most important objective: preparing her heart. Earthly things can be put off and will be taken away one day, but the content of our hearts cannot be taken away.

Read the rest of Samantha Harvey's excellent article on Mary and Martha in the continuation of her Women of the Bible series in the current issue of the Carolina Messenger by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com We have limited knowledge of those close to Jesus during His time on earth. Most of them include the apostles but we read of a few others that fellowshipped with Jesus on a more personal level. Mar…

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What Jesus Said About Evangelism — Jon Mitchell

Your Lord left this earth with these words on his lips: “…Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation” (Mk. 16:15). “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age” (Matt. 28:19-20). This Great Commission is more than a memorable title we give to these verses as we gave “the Golden Rule” slogan to Matthew 7:12. It is OUR mission, OUR purpose. The church exists not only to charitably “do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith” (Gal. 6:10) and “build one another up, just as you are doing” (1 Thess. 5:11). Our primary purpose for existing as those who are called by God’s gospel and assembled together as his family in Christ’s church is to share that gospel with the lost. Indeed, the mission of evangelism is the purpose, the end goal, behind any benevolent enterprise upon which we embark and every effort made to spiritually edify each other.

Read the rest of my article on what our Lord and Savior said about how Christians are to evangelize in the current issue of the Carolina Messenger by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost” (Lk. 19:10). With these words Jesus let the Jews at Jericho know why he had taken the time to visit a hated tax collector who had climbed a sy…

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What Jesus Said About Our Mouths — Tim Bench

Does controlling one’s tongue mean that we cannot take bold and firm doctrinal stances? Absolutely not. Does this mean that we must preach the gospel with timidity? Again, absolutely not. We are to preach boldly (Acts 28:31) and take the gospel to every corner of the globe (Mk. 16:15). However, we can do this without mocking others with vicious insults and derision.

Read the rest of Tim Bench's timely article on what our Lord said about how we are to communicate with each other in the current issue of the Carolina Messenger by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com Several years ago, a cousin of mine was tragically killed in an automobile accident. “Laura” was a recent college graduate and was engaged to be married. Her death was a crushing blow to her many …

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What Jesus Said About Divorce and Remarriage — Michael Grooms

The scriptures studied here demonstrate that there is a valid reason for divorce. The innocent party who divorces their spouse because of fornication does so in harmony with God’s word. That innocent party has the right to remarry. That second marriage of the innocent party to a scripturally qualified person is a marriage joined by God. May God’s word always be our guide.

Read the rest of Michael Grooms's article on Jesus' teaching on divorce and remarriage in the current issue of the Carolina Messenger by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com In the beginning…” Thus begins the biblical account of creation in Genesis 1:1. The creation of man and woman, made in the very image of God, served as the crowning act of God’s masterpiece (Gen. 1…

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What Jesus Said About False Doctrine — Dustin Forthun

Jesus’ hatred of false doctrine may not always get equal time in our thoughts and discussions. Some might even be surprised to hear that Jesus hates anything, but our Lord makes it clear that he hates false doctrine (Rev. 2:6).

Read the rest of Dustin Forthun's thoughts about Jesus's hatred of false doctrine in the current issue of the Carolina Messenger by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com Jesus loves the truth and hates false doctrine. Jesus’s love for truth is well known and fuels many happy thoughts: the truth sets us free (John 8:32), and Jesus wants the truth to set apart his f…

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What Jesus Said To The Woman At The Well — Roy Knight

Jesus not only changed the life of the Samaritan woman that day, He changed the lives of all who came out to hear Him. If Jesus can change their lives, then He can certainly change yours if you are ready and willing to drink of His living water.

Read the rest of Roy D. Knight's excellent study of Jesus' conversation with the Samaritan woman at Jacob's well in the current issue of the Carolina Messenger by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com The first twenty-six verses of the fourth chapter of the gospel of John provide for us an interesting discussion between two unlikely people. Let’s briefly take a look at this powerful and life-cha…

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Government As God’s Avenger, Corporal Punishment, Incarceration, Restitution — Jon Mitchell, Editor (Editorial: January/February, 2020)

Accordingly, the Law of Moses prescribed corporal punishment (Deut. 25:1-3). There are also examples in Scripture of governmental authorities incarcerating people both justly and unjustly (Gen. 39:7-20; 42; Judg. 16; 1 Kings 22:26-27; 2 Kings 17:1-4; Matt. 18:21-35; Acts 12, 21-28). Moses required a thief to repay full restitution or else be sold for his theft (Ex. 22:1-3; cf. Prov. 6:30-31); if the animals he stole were found alive in his possession, he would “restore double” (Ex. 22:4). He ordered restitution for other situations too (Ex. 22:5-6). The Torah reveals similar laws concerning fines and restitutions.

Read the rest of my editorial in the current issue of the Carolina Messenger about what the Bible says about government and corporal punishment by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com Our Lord through Paul inspired the saints in Rome to bless their persecutors and repay no one evil for evil; they were commanded to live peaceably with all as much as depended on them and not aveng…

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The Cosmological Argument for God’s Existence — Dewayne Bryant, Ph.D.

Something cannot come from nothing. This has found expression in the traditional phrase ex nihilo nihil fit (“Out of nothing, nothing comes”). This is common sense for most people but creates numerous problems when trying to formulate an opinion on the origin of our cosmos.

Read the rest of Dewayne Bryant's article in the current Carolina Messenger about the cosmological argument for God's existence by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com If nothing comes from nothing, then the most obvious conclusion is that the universe had a point of origin. It cannot come from nothing (proven by science), nor can it create itself (a logical imp…

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Biblical Worldview — Steve Miller

A biblical worldview is a perspective that sees everything through the “glasses” of Scripture. Rather than allowing culture or experience to determine a worldview, it allows the Bible to make that determination.

Read the rest of Steve Miller's article about having a biblical worldview in the current issue of the Carolina Messenger by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com and female he created them” (Gen. 1:27). Why am I here? “The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man” (Eccl. 12:13). Where …

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Women of the Bible: Eve — Samantha Harvey

From the article: Eve knew she was told not to eat of the fruit of the tree or touch it, lest she die. The serpent took what was bad and made it seem like it was not so. He told Eve she would not die but would be like God (Gen. 3:3-5). He gave Eve a twisted version of what God said. It is interesting that Satan presented to Eve the same pride of life that was his downfall (1 Tim. 3:6). I believe that in her naivety and in her trust and love for God, she thought that being like Him would be a good thing. However, with his words Satan had planted a seed of temptation. Eve allowed that seed to grow into a personal desire, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes (1 John 2:15-17), and that desire brought forth sin (James 1:14-15).

This year the Carolina Messenger is running a series of articles on different women one can read about in the Bible. I've asked Samantha Harvey from Florence, SC, to write these articles for the paper. This article which studies the first woman, Eve, is the first in this series. You can read the rest of it by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com It is interesting that Satan presented to Eve the same pride of life that was his downfall (1 Tim. 3:6). I believe that in her naivety and in her trust and love for God, she thought that being lik…

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The Bible’s Wrestling Matches — Victor M. Eskew

From the article: Paul let us know clearly that the warfare in which the Christian is engaged is spiritual in nature. We do not wrestle against flesh and blood. We wrestle adversaries who are in the unseen realm. The names by which he refers to them express their exalted status and power: principalities, powers, rulers, and spiritual wickedness in high places. These enemies will try to destroy our happiness in this life, but their special mission involves the destruction of our souls. They tempt us to sin. They lead us in false ways. They try to get us to doubt God and blame him. They desperately desire for us to become the servants of Satan.

I heard Victor M. Eskew preach on this topic at Polishing The Pulpit last year, and immediately asked him to make his sermon into an article for the current issue of the Carolina Messenger. Read the rest of his thoughts on the wrestling matches found in the Bible by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com One of the contests of the Greek games was wrestling. These were severe struggles between two powerful men who were trying to pen one another to the mat. Jude uses that word and exhorts his reade…

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The Example of Paul — Dustin Forthun

While Paul teaches us that it’s possible for a good man to still be wrong, he further teaches that it’s never too late to obey God. Paul invested so much time, effort, and energy in his Pharisee life. He was committed to this way. He was settled and established, yet he needed to change. The Lord visited Paul and made it clear that change was necessary (Acts 9:5-6). In a great example for us, Paul did better as soon as he learned better.

Read the rest of Dustin Forthun's great piece on the apostle Paul in the current issue of the Carolina Messenger by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com In the span of one conversation, Paul learned that he had been wrong his whole life. Rather than protest or refuse to change, this same man who always loved God and wanted to give Him the best, ch…

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The Fruit of our Lips — Paul Mays

A mind that is focused on Christ will sing often. A mind that sings often of Christ will be focused on Christ. God surely knew what He was doing when He blessed us with this form of worship. He designed us to remember scriptural truths tied to melody. In the same way that a melody instantly pops into your head when remembering the Alphabet Song, so does a melody when remembering “Jesus Loves Me.” These melodies help us remember biblical truths. This surely points to God’s wisdom and to His glory.

Read the rest of Paul Mays' article on singing in the current issue of the Carolina Messenger by going to https://carolinamessenger.wordpress.com/2020/02/18/the-fruit-of-our-lips-paul-mays/

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com When we sing, we repeatedly drive home biblical truths. These biblical truths are tied to melody. This, by divine design, permanently implants these truths into our hearts. This is further evide…

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What Botham Jean’s Brother Taught Me About Christianity — Jon Mitchell, Editor (Editorial: November/December, 2019)

Watching that video of him saying those words to his brother’s murderer, I realized that this young man of 18 years of age has taught me something very, very important about Christianity. He has shown me exactly what it means to be “children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world” (Phil. 2:15). All of us have read Jesus’ command to forgive those who repent, even if they sin against us seven times in a day (Lk. 17:3-4). How many of us have chosen not to even attempt to obey our Savior’s words over petty, trivial wrongs and slights? Yet this young man did exactly what Christ told him to do with someone who had committed against him and his family a horrific wrong the likes of which few of us will ever experience. Just as Abel still speaks through his example of obedient faith, Brandt’s example of humble love shown towards “the least of these” will likewise speak to all willing to listen for quite a long time. For that I am thankful.

Read the rest of my editorial in the current Carolina Messenger on what Botham Jean's brother taught me about being a Christian when he forgave his brother's murderer by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com On October 2, 2019, the entire nation was shown what it means to let one’s light shine for Christ in what was the clearest and most powerful way I’ve ever seen in my adult life. Many are aware of …

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Historical Myths Concerning Christianity — Dewayne Bryant, Ph.D.

Studying history does more than offer insights into the connection between the past and present or help us avoid repeating the same mistakes made by others. It is also a powerful tool in defending the Christian faith. Critics have a habit of distorting the historical record. Creating straw men is a particular talent of the most militant atheists, who seem to have little interest in giving Christianity any credit. Even on the popular level, we often see spectacular untruths preceded by the phrase, “Everybody knows.”

Read the rest of Dewayne Bryant's article about some of the untruths history tells about Christianity in the current issue of the Carolina Messenger by going to

carolinamessenger.wordpress.com The historical record has more than its fair share of falsehoods. One of the most famous—and pernicious—is the tale about George Washington cutting down the cherry tree, later confessing to the dee…

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