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By Elder Lynn Stapleton

Huntingdon, TN

The greatest privilege God has afforded man is to have the opportunity to be saved. God sent his Son into the world to save lost humanity from death and the everlasting destruction brought about by sin. Jesus said in Mark 8:35, "What shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul?" In this verse God's word demonstrates that the salvation of the soul is the most important thing in a man's life.

Salvation secures an entrance into God's everlasting kingdom with benefits mortal man can not imagine.

As great as this benefit is, God offers more privilege to the redeemed or saved men and women who become a member of His church.

Christ urges all who are saved to take up their cross and follow Him to become His disciple and witness to a world lost in sin and confusion. He commands the saved to be baptized and to become active members of His church to receive the special benefits that are given only to the church. These special privileges are: rewards for being faithful to His word, communion at the Lord's table, being part of His bride and living in the New Jerusalem. Christ promises to reward those who faithfully keep His commandments.

Confusion exists in the world today over "the way of salvation" and "which is the right church?" Paul states in I Corinthians 14:33, God is not the author of confusion. It is not easy to sift through all the prevailing winds of doctrine to find the truth but Hebrews 11:6 says "God is a rewarder of those that diligently seek Him." Jeremiah 29:13 says, "ye shall seek me and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart."

Therefore, those who seek God with all their heart will be saved and they will also find the right church if they seek diligently.

In his book, Mere Christianity, C. S. Lewis compared Christianity to a great hallway from which there are many rooms. He said these were the many denominations of the world. It is in these room where the fires burn and where the people live. It is my belief that Jesus Christ built only ONE ROOM and that all the other rooms Mr. Lewis is describing are built by man. The ONE ROOM that Jesus built is the true church and those who diligently seek it will find it according to His word.

While it is very likely that many Christians abide in these many rooms and that we shall see them in heaven, only those who take the time to find the true church that Jesus built will enjoy the special privileges afforded to His church.

The saddest part of C. S. Lewis' parable was that he observed many people standing in the hallway. This is an extremely sorrowful observation but a very real one. While many Christians have erred concerning which room to dwell in, many others have completely ignored the privilege to become a member of the church of Jesus Christ. Every child of God should search diligently for the right room and get into it and get as close to the fire as possible. He or she should work for the glory of God and the salvation of lost sinners.

If you have been saved, pray and ask God for leadership to help you find the right church and then join it!

Do not be guilty of STANDING IN THE HALLWAY.