Just Announced: Philippians Sermon Series

Summary: Restoring the Christian faith in areas where it may have disappeared.

Russians resurrect frozen flower, can the same happen with the church of the Bible?

By Mark T. Tonkery

Fox news reported this past week (Feb. 21, 2012) that Russian scientists managed to resurrect an ancient plant in a pioneering experiment that paves the way for the revival of other species. The Silene stenophylla is the oldest plant ever to be regenerated, the researchers said, and it is fertile, producing white flowers and viable seeds. The experiment proves that permafrost serves as a natural depository for ancient life forms, said the Russian researchers, who published their findings in Tuesday's issue of "Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences" of the United States. The Russian research team recovered the ancient fruit after investigating dozens of fossil burrows hidden in ice deposits on the right bank of the lower Kolyma River in northeastern Siberia, the sediments said to be dated back 30,000-32,000 years.(Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/scitech/2012/02/21/russians-resurrect-30000-year-old-frozen-flower/#ixzz1nIxJeiMG)

Now it is true that others have resurrected old seeds but what makes the Russians’ experiment so special is the age of the plant. But can this same principle be used in religion? Can we take the “ancient” Bible and “resurrect” the ancient faith? Can we have Christians like we find in the book of Acts? Or the church that Christ built?

Matthew 16:18, states, “And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.” In this passage Jesus teaches that He built one church and prohibits it from a total falling away or disappearance from the face of the earth, although Jesus warns in Matthew 7:21-23; as well Paul in 1 Tim. 4:1 that some people, even congregations will fall away, but not all will.

What if the church has never been in ones area? Or like Corinth, Sardis, or Rome the church in a certain area has fallen away and is not there. Is there any hope?

In the parable of the sower Jesus in Luke 8:5-18 described a farmer who sowed seed, some of which fell upon good soil. In explaining the parable He identified the “seed” as “the word of God” (Luke 8:11), and the “good ground” as “an honest and good heart” (Luke 8:15). Or, as the Gospel of Mark records it, those who “hear the word, and accept it, and bear fruit” (Mark 4:20). The result then is a New Testament Christian and a member of the Body of Christ, the church.

This principle is known as the seed principle. The way God designed seeds in Genesis 1:11-12, is for them to bear seed and fruit after their own kind. The same principle can be applied to the Bible. If Christians have not existed in an area or the church has fallen away, the Bible reminds us that the “seed” the word of God can once again be planted in receptive hearts and grow Christians.

Marshall Keeble used to illustrate this principle by discussing that if a person wanted to grow Georgia watermelons in Africa, he would not need to grow a vine stretching across the Atlantic Ocean from Georgia to Africa. All he would need to do is get the seed from Georgia and take it to Africa and plant it.”

Just as the Russians were able to resurrect the ancient flower, the Silene stenophylla, by using the ancient seed, those who hear (Rom. 10:17) the “ancient seed” the word of God and obey the Gospel (2 These. 1:7-9), and bear fruit will result in a Christian. It does not matter how old the seed is, when put in the right environment it will grow and bear fruit.

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