November 24, 2006

Our Forms of Worship by C.H. Spurgeon

If I have gone through the general routine of the worship of my church, and then think that I have done something acceptable to God, while yet my heart has not communed with him in humble repentance, or faith, or love, or joy, or consecration; I make a great mistake. You may keep on with your religious performances for seventy years or more; you may not neglect a single rubric in the whole ritual; but it is all nothing unless the soul has fellowship with God. Godliness is a spiritual thing; for "God is a Spirit; and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth."

So far as our forms or worship help us towards this spiritual communion, they are good, but no farther. Everything brought to God as a sacrifice must be alive. Its blood must be poured out warm at the altar's foot. Oh that you and I might feel that lifting of the soul to God, and that buoyancy of heart, which true spiritual worship alone can bring to us! May our ritual, whether we have much or little, be our guide to God, and not our chain to hold us back from God! By C.H. Spurgeon

October 26, 2006

Judgment! By William S. Plumer

"For God will bring every deed into judgment, including every hidden thing, whether it is good or evil." Ecclesiastes 12:14

God has appointed a day in the which He will judge the world. Respecting this day several things are noticeable.

All shall be judged. Saints and sinners, great and small, living and dead, the servant and his master, the prisoner at the bar and the judge who sat on his trial, the assassin and the assassinated, the seducer and his victim, the invader and the invaded, the hireling and his oppressor, the king and his subjects, the fool and the wise man, the persecutor and the persecuted, the apostate, the hypocrite, the child of God and the child of the devil, shall all be there! No one shall be so mighty, and no one shall be so lowly—as to elude the eye or the sentence of Him who shall sit upon the throne of judgment! What a massive multitude will this be—when prophets, apostles, martyrs, confessors, saints of all ages; when sinners, liars, infidels, blasphemers, moralists, and murderers—shall all be there; when the sea and the dry land shall give up their dead; when death and hell shall deliver up the dead who are in them; when all who lived before the flood, all who have lived since the flood, and all who shall have lived to the end of time shall stand before God! This will be the first and the last assembly—in which are found every person whom God ever made.

It will be a day of astounding exposures. Villainy will be covered up no more. Every disguise will be taken away. There is nothing covered that shall not be revealed; neither hidden, that shall not be known. It will be a day of intense excitement. There will be no listless spectators of those scenes. Every faculty of the intellect and of emotion will be aroused to the highest possible exercise. Men may sleep under sermons concerning the judgment, but they will not be dull when they go to judgment!

It will also be a day of final separation. The precious and the vile; the wheat and the tares; the sheep and the goats; saints and sinners—shall no longer mingle together. The separations of this day will be final. The righteous and the wicked shall part that day to meet no more. It shall be a day of despair to all the unregenerate. Everywhere sinners will be crying to the rocks and the mountains: "Fall on us and hide us from the face of Him who sits on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb!" Was ever despair more dreadful than this?
The judgment is coming! The Judge stands at the door! The time is short!

By William S. Plumer

October 24, 2006

The Children Began to Hiss by William Tiptaft

Dear brother,

Since I last wrote, I have preached in Abingdon Great Church, on Christmas evening. I preached the truth, I trust, to a very crowded congregation, supposed to be (sitting and standing, who were able to get in) about 5,000 people. I pleased the believers; but very much displeased the carnally-minded, who were never before so puzzled and confounded in all their lives! I spoke the truth faithfully, and so as all could hear; but I had no idea that the gospel would have given so much offence! It is the truth that offends and disturbs Satan's kingdom! The neighboring clergymen, who are in darkness, say of me, "Away with such a fellow from the earth; it is not fit that he should live!"

My mind is not moved by the persecution. I believe if God has a work for me to do, I shall do it, in spite of the devil and all his children! Nature is not changed, the gospel is not changed, and Christ is not changed. What reason is there why they should not hate the truth now, as much as in the time of the apostles? I never saw any fruits of my labors until I roused and disturbed the 'roaring lion'. When, through the grace of God, I began to disturb his kingdom, I soon found that his children began to hiss!

The world and Satan hate believers. The Pharisees hate me the most. I cut off all their rotten props, and all their fleshly devotion! It is not coming near to the truth, it is not the 'mere letter' of the gospel, that will convert men; but the Holy Spirit.

Make the Word of God your study. Pin your faith to no man's views! I scarcely read any other book. Beware of those who want to exalt man in any manner.

Yours very affectionately,
William Tiptaft, Jan. 30th, 1830

October 18, 2006

Sovereign Grace by Charles Pennington

Sovereign Grace is an explicit term used by many to define the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. If the word grace as used in Scripture were understood, there would be no need to use the word sovereign; for grace by its very character must be sovereign. Grace that is by merit of any kind of degree ceases to be grace, “And if by grace, then is it no more works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work.” (Romans 11:6). Likewise, a scriptural understanding of who the Lord Jesus is renders the word sovereign unnecessary, for His person declares Him to be so. “But unto the Son He saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a scepter of righteousness is the scepter of Thy Kingdom.” (Hebrews 1:8). However, because so many in our generation give more credence to “I think” than they do the “Word of God”, we shall continue to use Sovereign Grace as a definitive term for that Gospel of the glory of the blessed God; by Whose free and unmerited favor, the salvation of a lost, condemned sinner, (without contribution from the sinner or any good in Him, either seen or foreseen, before or after conversion); was purposed, planned and purchased; and is applied and sustained; according to terms of strict justice and infinite love; unto the praise of our Blessed Redeemer, to Whom be glory, for ever and ever. – Charles Pennington

October 03, 2006

Is this your religion? By John Angell James

"If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing!" 1 Corinthians 13:2

LOVE is a grace which many professing Christians think far too little about; but it is of infinite value in the eyes of God. Love is the most characteristic feature of Christ's image in a renewed man. Love is the most precious fruit of grace; and yet the fruit which too many of His professed followers seem to think themselves hardly under any obligation to cultivate.

"Love is patient" and forbearing under injuries and annoyances--and does not revile, revenge, or retaliate.

"Love is kind," not harsh or crude--but ever ready, willing, and pleased by looks, words, and actions, to promote the comfort of others.

"Love does not envy." It does not pine and grieve at the sight of another's superior possessions, fame, happiness, or piety--and dislike him on that account.

"Love does not boast. Love is not proud." It neither boasts its own gifts, achievements, and possessions, nor despises others, nor makes insulting comparisons--but is humble and gentle.

"Love does not behave unseemly." It modestly keeps its place, and does nothing to offend by what is unfitting its rank, station, or circumstances.

"Love seeks not her own." It does not selfishly want to have its own way, or promote its own interest--to the neglect of others.

"Love is not easily provoked." It governs its temper, controls its passions, and is not soon or unreasonably irritable or petulant.

"Love thinks no evil." It is not censorious, nor forward to impute a bad motive to a doubtful action--but is disposed to put the best construction on the actions and words of others.

"Love rejoices not in iniquity--but rejoices in the truth." It does not delight in the sins--but in the excellences of an opponent.

"Love bears (or covers) all things." It does not divulge, proclaim, aggravate faults--but hides them as far as it can, and it is right to do so.

"Love believes all things," that are to the advantage of another.

"Love hopes all things," where there is not sufficient evidence to authorize belief.

"Love endures all things," bears hardships, sustains labor, makes sacrifices--in order to accomplish its purposes of good-will.

Beautiful description! Heavenly temper! Godlike mind! Now, dear friends, look at love! Gaze upon its lovely form, its beautiful countenance, its graceful actings. Observe its seraphic glow, its divine temper, until you are all enamored with its charms. But look at it not only as something to be admired--but to be possessed and practiced. Unless this is your temperament, you are not Christians. I do not say you cannot be Christians unless you have love in perfection. But you must have the principle of love, and must be living in its exercise. You are Christians no further than you live under its influence. No matter what knowledge you may have of the doctrines of the gospel; what seeming faith you may possess; what zeal you may manifest; what liberality you may exercise; what regularity, and punctuality in attendance upon the means of grace, you may maintain--if love is lacking, all this is of no avail. by John Angell James

September 21, 2006

Is it winter with your soul? By Octavius Winslow

To the reader conscious of secret declension in his soul, we propose the same searching and tender inquiry. You did run well; who hindered you? What stumbling block has fallen in your way? What has impeded your onward course?

What has... enfeebled your faith, chilled your love, drawn your heart from Jesus, and lured you back to the weak and beggarly elements of a poor world? You set out fair; for a time you did run well; your zeal, and love, and humility gave promise of a useful life, of a glorious race, and of a successful competition for the prize; but something has hindered you.

What is it? Is it.... the world, creature love, covetousness, ambition, presumptuous sin, unmortified corruption, the old leaven unpurged? Search it out! Rest not until it be discovered. Your declension is secret, perhaps the cause is secret; some spiritual duty secretly neglected, or some known sin secretly indulged. Search it out, and bring it to light. You are not as you once were. Your soul has lost ground; the divine life has declined; the fruit of the Spirit has withered; the heart has lost its softness, the conscience has lost its tenderness, the mind has lost its lowliness, the throne of grace has lost its sweetness, the cross of Jesus has lost its attraction.

Oh, how sad and melancholy the change that has passed over you! And have you not the consciousness of it in your soul? Where is the blessedness you spoke of? Where is the sunlit countenance of a reconciled Father? Where are the rich moments spent before the cross? Where are the hallowed seasons of communion in the closet, shut in with God? Where is the voice of the turtledove, the singing of birds, the green pastures where you did feed, the still waters on whose banks you did repose? Is it all gone?

Is it winter with your soul? Ah! yes; your soul is made to feel that it is an evil and a bitter thing to depart from the living God. By Octavius Winslow

September 18, 2006

Saving Faith Always Accompanied by Saving Graces by Henry Mahan

The same gospel of the grace of God in our Lord Jesus Christ, which saves sinners, also sanctifies them and makes them obedient sons. A faith which does not produce obedience to God's word and godliness of character is not saving faith at all.

Spurgeon once said, "There was no need for special conventions and camp meetings on 'sanctification and holiness' until preachers left the gospel of sovereign grace and arminian message and methods prevailed in evangelism." The Westminster Confession teaches, "Faith is the alone instrument of justification; yet it is not alone in the person justified, but is ever accompanied with all other saving graces.'"

The Calvinistic message of God's electing love in Christ Jesus has produced generations of serious, God-fearing and persevering, obedient lovers of Christ and one another; for it is by that love for Christ, His word, and His people that we know that we have "passed from death unto life," and by which we make "our calling and election sure." By Henry Mahan

September 13, 2006

Four False Statements part 1 by Don Bell

There are false statements made from the average pulpit, parroted by those who hear them. I ask you to look at what these statements are with an open Bible, will you do that? Here they are; the first false statement is, "GOD LOVES YOU", second, "JESUS DIED FOR YOU", third, "WILL YOU ACCEPT JESUS"? fourth, "GIVE YOUR HEART TO JESUS".

Why are these statements false? Because they are unscriptural, and should never be preached nor told to men indiscriminately. Not one of these statements is found in the Bible. Where then did they come from? From men! Not once did any preacher in the Word Of God, not even the Lord Jesus EVER say to people "God loves you, Jesus died for you".

Let me put it this way. If anyone had told Esau, or Judas Iscariot that God loved them and Christ died for them they would have lied to them! God hated Esau, Judas was a devil. In the Book of the Acts of the Apostles, the word love is not mentioned once, nor do you find any one of the apostles at any time preaching God loves you, Jesus died for you". Instead of honoring the love of God and the death of Christ these statements belittle it and make it of NO VALUE. It is this pitiful concept of God's Love and the death Of Christ that has brought us to such a miserable state as a people. There is no fear of death or judgment, no fear of sin and it's consequences, because God loves everybody and Christ died for them, so what is there to fear?

God's love and the death of Christ in the Holy Scriptures is always addressed to a particular class of person. It is addressed to sinners, the elect, to beggars, to weak and heavy laden, to the sheep, even "to many", but never to all indiscriminately. Our Lord told the Pharisees; " How shall you escape the damnation of hell?" (Matt. 23:33). Does that sound like He loved them and died for them? If the average religionist was preaching to those same people today, they would have said: "Smile God loves you and Jesus gave his life for you." But they would also have been lying to them!

It is only when men are taught by the Holy Spirit that they are sinners by birth and practice, that they deserve hell for their sins, they are also under the just condemnation of the Holy and Just God of the Bible, "No man can come unto me except the Father which sent me draw them, and they shall all be taught of God" (John 6:44-45). It is only a soul that is drawn and taught by the Holy Spirit that can find any assurance in the love of God and the death of Christ for them. God's love is manifested only in Christ and only towards them who believe on Christ for forgiveness of their sin and justification before God, but the wrath of God abides on everyone who does not believe on God's dear Son, the Lord Jesus(John 3:35-36).
by Don Bell

Four False Statements part 2 by Don Bell

In the last article we looked at four false statements that are preached and believed by most in religion today. They are, "God loves you", "Jesus died for you", "Will you accept Jesus?", and "Give your heart to Jesus". If you look at these four statements honestly, scripturally, and with your Bible open, you will find they are false.

Let us look together at the last two statements. "Will you accept Jesus?" This is a common question asked by preachers today, but do you know that the Lord Himself never asked anyone, ever, if they would please accept him? The thing this generation needs to face is whether the Lord Jesus Christ will accept you! He is the Creator – you are the creature. He is Lord of lords, King of kings, and He is the Sovereign of the universe with all power in heaven and earth vested in Him. Do you really think, for one moment, that He is begging, or that any of His preachers should go begging proud sinners to please "accept Jesus"? Have you ever heard of a king asking his subjects to accept him? Find if you can, any apostle, any prophet, any scripture that would even intimate that the Lord Jesus Christ is presented to sinners to accept or reject! You can find where sinners are told to repent, to bow the knee, to call on the Lord – but never to accept Him! The very thought is repugnant. It belittles the Lord Jesus' glory and power, and especially His substitutionary sacrifice on the cross. Do you think for one moment that he died such an ignominious death on the cross and then offer himself to be accepted or rejected by miserable sinners like you and I?

Now let us consider the last statement, "Give your heart to Jesus". Again, where is this found in all of God's word? What we do find is, "The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked" (Jer. 17:9, Mark 7:22). That man's heart is, "hard as a nether millstone" (Job 41:24). "Who can say I have clean hands and a pure heart?" The Bible truth is that we don't "give" our heart to Jesus – He is the one who must give us a new heart and a right spirit (Ezk. 36:26). Man by nature has a heart that is against God and His Christ. God, for Christ's sake, gives all who submit to Him a new heart. Because man's heart is hard and deceitful, he must be born again (John 3:3-8). A man cannot give himself life, only God can do that. In giving the New Birth, He gives a new heart, a right spirit. A new creature is born, one that knows, loves and obeys his Lord, his God, Jesus Christ.

It is only when men are taught by the Holy Spirit that they are sinners by birth and practice, that they deserve hell for their sins, they are also under the just condemnation of the Holy and Just God of the Bible, "No man can come unto me except the Father which sent me draw them, and they shall all be taught of God" (John 6:44-45). It is only a soul that is drawn and taught by the Holy Spirit that can find any assurance in the love of God and the death of Christ for them. God's love is manifested only in Christ and only towards them who believe on Christ for forgiveness of their sin and justification before God, but the wrath of God abides on everyone who does not believe on God's dear Son, the Lord Jesus(John 3:35-36).

You may not believe what I say. You may ridicule what I say, you may get angry at what I say, but you cannot refute what I say with the Scriptures. Read your bibles –
you conclude for yourselves who has all power; is it Christ? Or is it man? Today's preaching presents the Lord Jesus as the beggar, pleading with men, instead of man as the beggar, pleading with Christ for mercy. by Don Bell

September 11, 2006

Who makes you to Differ? By Todd Nibert

This is the question Paul set before the Corinthians. "For who maketh thee to differ from another? And what hast thou that thou didst not receive?" (I Cor. 4:7). The child of God does indeed differ from the unbeliever. Because he has been born again by the Spirit of God, he now has a different nature, a different Lord, different goals and objectives, and a different reason for living. He does differ!

The question Paul deals with is...WHO made the difference? Who gets the credit for this difference? Does the child of God have a greater intelligence or moral superiority over the unbeliever that causes them to differ? Absolutely not! When God passed through the land of Egypt to destroy the firstborn, He said in Exodus 11:7, "But against any of the children of Israel shall not a dog move his tongue, against man or beast: that ye may know how that the Lord doth put a difference between the Egyptians and Israel." If you are a child of God, the answer to the question is, the Lord made you to differ! The question that naturally arises is, HOW has He made us to differ? The answer to that question is found in Ephesians 1:3-14, where Paul outlines the work of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit in salvation. Here we learn how God has made the believer to differ from the unbeliever. "Who maketh thee to differ from another?" First, God the Father did in eternal election. "According as He hath chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world." If you are a child of God it is because God chose you. You will not give yourself the credit. Even though He could have justly passed you by, in His mercy He chose you out of the mass of fallen humanity to be His child. God the Father made you to differ in eternal election.

Who made you to differ? God the Son did in redemption. "In whom we have redemption through His blood " (Eph. 1:7). If you are a child of God it is because Christ died for you, Christ paid for your sins by His death on the cross, and if Christ paid for them, then that are paid! Everybody He died for must be saved! He said in John 6:39 "And this is the will of Him that sent Me, that of all which He hath given Me, I should lose nothing." The difference between the saved and the lost is the blood!

Who made you to differ? God the Holy Spirit in regeneration. "Ye were sealed with that Holy Spirit of Promise" (Eph. 1:13). Everybody that God elected and Christ died for will be regenerated, or born again by the Holy Spirit of God. The fact that one trusts Christ and another doesn't cannot be attributed to some moral excellence or will that the one has over the other. God the Holy Spirit made the difference. He gave the believer the ability to believe and repent. No true child of God will give his works or free-will the credit for making the difference between himself and the unbeliever! He knows God has made the difference!

The issue at stake in who makes the believer to differ from the unbeliever is this: WHO does the saving, God or man? WHO gets the glory: God or man? Without doubt the Bible teaches that it is God who makes the believer to differ from the unbeliever. Peter and Judas serve to illustrate this. Peter was saved and Judas was lost. Was Peter a better man than Judas? Was the difference what one did that the other did not do, or what Christ did for the one and not the other. If you say the difference lies in the men's works , you must conclude salvation is by works. In light of this, let me give you four question to thoughtfully consider.
1. If God loves all men the same ..... What does the love of God have to do with salvation? Nothing!
2. If God willed the salvation of all men the same.....What does the will of God have to do with salvation.....Nothing!
3. If Christ died for all men the same.....What does the death of Christ have to do with salvation? Nothing!
4. If God the Holy Spirit calls all men the same.....What does the work of the Holy Spirit have to do with salvation? Nothing!
If we do not give God all the credit in making us to differ, in reality we give Him no credit at all! Who Makes You To Differ? GOD!
By Todd Nibert

September 05, 2006

All Things are of God by Tom Harding

"For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom(God) be glory for ever." Here is a glorious and comforting truth to the believer, who is resting in the Lord Jesus Christ, all things are of God. This truth echoes throughout the pages of inspired scripture (Rom. 8:28; 2 Cor. 5:18) and declares that God is God, beside Him there is no other (Isa. 45:22). The Apostle clearly states that, "all things are of Him," God is the first cause and last end of all things (Isa.45:7). He also says that, "all things through Him," God in time executes His wise decrees to His own will and pleasure (Isa. 46: 9-12). Further he says that, "all things are to Him," our sovereign God is working all things to an eternal end that will glorify Himself. We can apply this three fold rule to many things, such as creation and providence, but lets us consider them in salvation.

1). ALL THINGS IN SALVATION ARE OF GOD! Salvation is of the Lord (Jonah 2:9). None but God could have devised such a way of salvation such as the gospel of Jesus Christ presents, wherein God can be just and the justifier of the ungodly (Rom. 3:26). God ordained the hour when the Saviour would come (Gal. 4:4). God ordained the hour when He would die as the believers substitute for sin (2 Cor. 5:21). God ordained the hour when Jesus Christ would be raised from the dead and exalted to glory (Rom. 4:25).

2). ALL THINGS IN SALVATION ARE THROUGH HIM! Salvation is a work given to Jesus Christ by the Father to accomplish. He did not fail to complete the task He was given (Isa. 42:4). He prayed and declared in John 17:4, "I have glorified thee on the earth: I have finished the work which thou gavest me to do." In the fulfillment and accomplishment of salvation man has no part in it. Carefully read this scripture: "When He had by Himself purged our sins, He sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high" (Heb. 1:3). Every spiritual blessing we enjoy comes to us through Jesus Christ alone (Eph. 1:3). God apart from Christ is a consuming fire (Heb.12:29).

3). ALL THINGS IN SALVATION ARE TO HIM! What is the grand design of God in the salvation of His people? His glory! Our eternal God is wisely and rightly working all things to the honor and glory of Jesus Christ. "Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God" (Rom. 15:7). The motive of God to save His people from their sin is found in Himself, and that motive and purpose is His glory. Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive, power, and riches, and wisdom and honour, and glory (Rev. 5:12). By Tom Harding

August 30, 2006

The secret of our growth in grace by Octavius Winslow

"May Your will be done." Matthew 6:10

The great secret of all quietness and contentedness of mind under all circumstances, is in the resignation of our own will to God's will. The moment there arises in the breast the least hostility to what God does, or enjoins, there is unhappiness. The cheerful doing and the patient suffering of our Father's will resolves itself into perfect satisfaction with all that He does. This is . . the daily lesson of life, the secret of our growth in grace, the essence of our personal holiness.

"May Your will be done!" This is the most solemn prayer it is possible for man to breathe. By Octavius Winslow

August 28, 2006

He makes us willing by Aitken

taken from Spugeon sermon notes -

I heard a friend of mine, not long ago, relate an incident, which I will venture to repeat, as well as I remember it. He was having an earnest conversation, upon the necessity of full consecration, with a lady who professed to know Christ as her Saviour, but shrank from yielding herself to Him. At last she said, with more outspoken honesty, I am afraid, than many who mean exactly the same thing display, “I don’t want to give myself right over to Christ; for, if I were to do so, who knows what He might do with me? For aught I know, he might send me to China.” Years passed away when my friend received a most deeply interesting letter from this very lady, telling of how her long conflict with God had come to an end, and what happiness and peace she now felt by the grace of God in the complete surrender of herself to her Lord; and referring to her former conversation she said, “And now I am my own no longer, the Lord has made me willingly over to God without reserve, and He is sending me to China!” By W.H.M.H. Aitken

August 21, 2006

The Trail of Your faith by Joe Terrell

1Pe 1:7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:

It is a blessing to experience those times when all seems well and faith comes easily, when it seems the very air is filled with the presence of the Lord. Such times are a blessing, but they are no proof of true faith. Faith is proven when it endures the HARD times. When the heart is broken, the mind confused, and the body weak, then is faith put to the test and proven whether it be genuine. When faith survives those times when there is NO FEELING to verify it, NO EVIDENCE to confirm it, and NO FLESHLY ENERGY to sustain it, then and only then can we discover that we have that faith that is "the gift of God." God's gifts are "without repentance," and this is as true of faith as any of His other gifts. We know we have believed when we never repent of our faith, but believe in the very face of all that is opposed to faith. This is the trial and proof of faith. By Joe Terrell, Pastor Grace Community Church Rock Valley, Iowa

August 17, 2006

Christ "In All the Scriptures" by Ian Potts

The whole Bible has one central message, one theme, one subject, running right through it, from Genesis to Revelation, like a crimson cord threaded through each and every word – that message regards the person and the work of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. The message is clear – it concerns “Christ and Him Crucified”. Wherever we read in the scriptures, Old Testament or New, it is Christ who is being spoken of and it is Christ for whom we should look. To miss Christ – both His person and His work - is to miss the very heart, the very essence of the message of the word of God.

In Acts 8:32-35 we read of the Ethiopian eunuch in his chariot. The eunuch needed the Holy Spirit to open his understanding in the scriptures. But the message which Philip preached unto him from those Old Testament scriptures was clear – they spoke of Jesus. Jesus Himself confirmed this fact to the disciples in Luke 24:27 where we read: “And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.” Elsewhere we read that the scriptures testify of Christ: “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me” (John 5:39).

But not only has God given us the scriptures which testify of Christ, but the Holy Spirit, through the written word of God, testifies of the Living Word – the Lord Jesus Christ - that those chosen out of the darkness might comprehend the Light and believe on His name (John 1:12): “But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me” (John 15:26). How we need the Comforter, the Spirit of truth to give us eyes to see and ears to hear what wondrous things the Lord Jesus Christ has done in dying to save sinners. May God be pleased to give grace to see Christ in “all the scriptures”. By Ian Potts

August 14, 2006

God's most stubborn enemy! By Jonathan Edwards

"I hate pride and arrogance!" Proverbs 8:13

Pride is a person having too high an opinion of himself.

Pride is the first sin that ever entered into the universe, and the last sin that is rooted out.

Pride is the worst sin. It is the most secret of all sins. There is no other matter in which the heart is more deceitful and unsearchable. Alas, how much pride the best have in their hearts!

Pride is God's most stubborn enemy! There is no sin so much like the devil as pride. It is a secret and subtle sin, and appears in a great many shapes which are undetected and unsuspected. - Jonathan Edwards

"The Lord detests all the proud of heart. Be sure of this: They will not go unpunished." Prov. 16:5

August 10, 2006

what is a Sovereign Grace Church


While there are many local churches across the country and around the world that fellowship among each other and may associate themselves as Sovereign Grace Churches, they are not a part of any denomination or ecclesiastical association, and do not desire to be. They simply prefer, because of their understanding of the Word of God, to remain and always function as a local, independent congregation. As such, they are actively engaged in adherence to the Word of God alone and are not ruled by or in any way obligated to any creed, or confession of faith of less inspiration and authority than "thus saith the Word of the Lord.". They adhere steadfast to "the apostles’ doctrine." That is to say, without intimidation believe and incessantly preach the doctrine of the Apostles included all those glorious, God honoring, Christ exalting, flesh abasing doctrines commonly referred to as Calvinism, or The Doctrines of Grace. In that they preach, praise, and reverence Christ alone, grace alone, and faith alone. The sum and substance of all they do and believe is Christ and Him crucified. I Cor 2:2 “For I determined not to know anything among you save Jesus Christ and Him crucified”

Why sovereign grace? You would most likely need to ask the pastor of one of these churches but to me I see know better way to precisely identify the person and message than with those words.

Sovereign – In the simplest terms sovereignty means God is God. Only He, unto Himself, can be exalted above all and is God of very God (Psa 97:9). Not only is there nothing He cannot do, within His nature, but also there is nothing left to chance. For all things, that are made by Him are within His dominion (Prov 16:4). Anything less than that takes glory away from God. Anything that gives any control to any of His creations most limits God, which takes away any and all sovereignty. I believe that God almighty is absolutely sovereign in all things, specifically in predestination, creation, providence, and salvation (Rom. 8:28-30; 11:33-36). I know that everything that comes to pass in time was predestinated by God in eternity and is brought to pass by God in providence for the salvation of his elect (Rom. 8:28-30; Eph. 1:11).

Grace- Every aspect of salvation from the election of men to their glorification is all of God’s grace. There is absolutely NO part of our redemption that has anything to do with what we do for God but what He has done for you. To ascribe any part of salvation to the religious efforts, good works, or man’s will is to deny the scriptures and the grace of God. The Father gave His only begotten Son, The Lord Jesus Christ, who died for and redeemed those elect sinners alone (Heb. 9:12; Rev. 5:9). God the Holy Spirit regenerates and calls every chosen, redeemed sinner to life and faith in Christ by the irresistible power of his grace through the preaching of the gospel (Rom. 1:16-17; 10:13-17; 1 Cor. 1:21-23; James 1:18; 1 Pet. 23-25). Every sinner born again by God’s free, sovereign, irresistible grace is kept in life and faith in Christ by that same grace unto eternal glory, being sealed in Christ by the Holy Spirit (Eph. 1:13-14).

Although they may not all say Sovereign Grace Church on their boards in front of their buildings and many may call themselves Baptist or other more common terms when asked what church I go to it is with humility and praise that I can say a sovereign grace church. For in those words is a glorious message of how a sinner like myself can be accepted by a Holy Sovereign God on the grounds of the Person and the Work of His gift of His Son.

August 08, 2006

Sovereign Grace Past and Present


We are pleased to announce the publication of our third title, "Sovereign Grace - Past and Present", a collection of writings from both past and present preachers of God's Gospel of Free and Sovereign Grace through Jesus Christ.

Includes works by William Tiptaft, Tobias Crisp, William Huntington, William Gadsby, Robert Murray M'Cheyne, J.C. Philpot, John Kershaw, James Bourne, Eli Ashdown, Francis Covell, John Vinall, John Warburton, Don Fortner, Henry Mahan, Don Bell, Gary Shepard, Todd Nibert, Tom Harding, Peter Meney and Benjamin A. Ramsbottom.

The book also includes an Introduction on 'Sovereign Grace', background information about each author and a useful appendix containing much information about other works written by or about the authors.

These works are by authors whose lives span several hundred years, yet their message is the same - they proclaim the grace of God which brings salvation - because the One of whom they speak never changes, He is "Jesus Christ, the same yester day, and to day, and for ever".

For more details and/or to order the book online view the book description on or visit our Grace and Truth Publications Publications Booklist

July 27, 2006

Sovereign Grace Bible Conference

Sovereign Grace Church
1806 Hunter Avenue P O Box 293
New Castle, IN 47362
Phone: 765-529-6530

Pastor: Bruce Crabtree

Scheduled Speakers
Don Bell, Pastor of Lantana Grace Church in Crossville, TN
Todd Nibert, Pastor of Todd’s Road Grace Church in Lexington, KY
Friday through Sunday
August 11- 13, 2006

Everyone Welcome !

As believers of the Lord Jesus Christ, in this day when so many people and religions are promoting themselves, and man’s work and merit, we cherish this time to meet with those who truly worship God in the Spirit and have no confidence in the flesh. It is also our desire that those who do not know the precious joy of sins forgiven, and have never heard of the grace that is given through the blood and merit of the Lord Jesus, to unworthy sinners, may be brought to Christ in faith, through the preaching of the blessed Gospel of Our Lord. We do not meet just to socialize, but our fellowship is in Christ and His Word. It is our prayer and sincere desire that Gods Word will be established in each heart and for a little while we may leave the cares of this world and it’s follies, and come together to truly worship and adore the Blessed Savior. "All nations, whom thou hast made, shall come and worship before thee, Oh Lord, and shall glorify Thy Name," Psalm 86:9. Let us Worship Him Who is Worthy of all Honor and Glory!!!

Friday, August 11
7:00 P.M. Don Bell
8:00 PM Todd Nibert
Refreshments following service
Saturday, August 12
10:00 A.M. Todd Nibert
11:00 A. M. Don Bell
Lunch immediately following service at Pastor Bruce Crabtree’s home.
Sunday, August 13
10:00 A.M. Don Bell
11:00 AM Todd Nibert
Lunch served immediately following service at church
No Sunday Evening Service

June 05, 2006


Job 25:4

1. The JUSTIFIER--"It is God that justifies." The sentence of acquittal must come from HIS lips and be registered in His books.

2. The JUSTIFIED--man, the sinner, under wrath, the ungodly, the condemned.

3. The JUSTIFYING FACT--the death of Him whose name is Jehovah our Righteousness.

4. The JUSTIFYING INSTRUMENT--faith. Not strong faith, nor great faith,nor perfect faith, but simply faith, or believing. "We are justified by faith."

5. The JUSTIFYING MEDIUM--the righteousness of God. This is the "best robe" which is prepared for the prodigal. By it he is clothed, beautified, made fit to enter his Father's house and sit down at his Father's table. Christ is Himself our justification. In Him we "stand." In Him we are "found." Him we "put on." With Him we are clothed; by Him we are protected as by a shield; in Him we take refuge as in a strong tower.

"FOUND IN HIM!" What then? Our own "self" has disappeared; instead there is Christ, the beloved Son in whom God is well pleased. --From "Everlasting Righteousness" by Horatius Bonar

June 01, 2006

Hearts Desire by Charles Spurgeon

He who delights in the possession of the Lord Jesus has all that heart can wish. As for 'created things', they are like shallow and deceitful brooks-- they fail to supply our needs, much less our wishes. "The bed of earthly enjoyment is shorter than that a man can stretch himself on it, and the covering narrower than that he can wrap himself in it." But in Jesus there is room for imagination's utmost stretch and widest range. When Jesus is enjoyed, He puts a fullness into all other mercies. – C.H. Spurgeon

The Arrow of Prayer by Octavius Winslow

There is....
no depth so profound, no darkness so dense, no privation so pressing, or perplexity so great, but from it you may cry unto God; the Lord inclining His ear to the softest, faintest breathing of your soul.

Sink the soul as it may, the arrow of prayer, feathered with a divine promise, springing from the bow of faith, and winged by the power of the Spirit, will overcome every obstacle, pierce every cloud, and fasten itself upon the throne of the Eternal God! - Octavius Winslow

May 26, 2006

Henry T Mahan DVD Ministry

Henry T Mahan DVD Ministry

Todds Road Grace Church
4137 Todds Road
Lexington, KY 40509


For over 30 years Pastor Henry Mahan delivered a weekly television message. Each message ran for 27 minutes and was widely broadcast. We were fortunate enough to gain access to the original professional broadcast master tapes and have converted all that were reasonably preserved to DVD format. In all we have converted over 300 messages. We have taken great care to obtain the best possible quality given the problems associated with old video tape.

We are now ready to make these messages available to you. Initially we are offering the first 100 messages on 20 DVDs. These 20 DVDs are priced at US $50 including shipping within the continental USA. So as to keep costs down the DVDs will not ship in a case such as this one but will ship in a single soft DVD case.

Duplication of DVDs is a very time consuming process so we plan on performing duplication in bulk; accordingly this is a limited time offer. Orders received after July 1st 2006 may not be fulfilled. DVDs ordered will not ship until duplication is complete. We estimate this will be mid summer. We do not plan on duplicating this set of DVDs again in the future. Once the first 20 DVDs have been duplicated we hope to be able to make available the remaining DVDs in batches of 20.

If you wish to order, please make your check for $50 payable to Todds Road Grace Church DVD Ministry and mail the checks to the address above. If you wish to be kept informed of future releases please include your email address. Profits, if any, from this program will be forwarded to missionaries whom Pastor Mahan has supported for many years.

Free preproduction sample DVDs may still be available. If you would like to view a sample DVD please write to us or consult with your pastor. If you have a sample DVD please do not let the DVD sit on a shelf; pass it on after viewing so that others can benefit from Pastor Mahan's preaching.

Finally please note that this is not a commercial venture and subtitles are not available. Only NTSC versions are being offered.

May 24, 2006

God’s will first by Horatius Bonar

Man's heart is enmity to God,– to God as revealed in the Gospel,– to God as the God of grace. What truth can there be in the assertion that all the sinner's distrust of God and darkness of spirit arise from his not seeing God as the God of grace? I grant that oftentimes this is the case. I know that it is very frequently misapprehension of God's merciful character, as seen and pledged in the cross of Christ, that is the cause of darkness to the anxious soul, and that a simple sight of the exceeding riches of the grace of God would dispel these clouds; but that is very different from saying that such a sight, apart from the renewing energy of the Spirit upon the soul, would change man's enmity into confidence and love. For we know that the unrenewed will is set against the Gospel; it is enmity to God and His truth. The more closely and clearly truth is set before it, and pressed home upon it, its hatred swells and rises. The presentation of truth, however forcible and clear, even though that truth were the grace of God, will only exasperate the unconverted man. It is the Gospel that he hates; and the more clearly it is set before him he hates it the more. It is God that he hates; and the more closely God approaches him, the more vividly God is set before him, the more does his enmity awaken and augment. Surely, then that which stirs up enmity cannot of itself remove it. Of what avail, then, are the most energetic means by themselves? The will itself must be directly operated upon by the Spirit of God: He who made it must remake it. Its making was the work of Omnipotence: its remaking must be the same. In no other way can its evil bent be rectified. God's will must come into contact with man's will, and then the work is done. Must not God's will then be first in every such movement? Man's will follows; it can not lead.
by Horatius Bonar (1808-1889)
Scottish minister and hymn writer

May 22, 2006

God’s will and man’s will by Horatius Bonar

"Cannot I do with you as the potter? saith the Lord. Behold, as the clay is in the potter's hand, so are ye in my hand, O house of Israel." – Jer. 18:6.

Nothing that is good can exist which God did not will to be, and nothing that is evil can exist which God did not will to allow. The will of God goes before all other wills. It does not depend on them, but they depend on it. It's movements regulate them. The "I will" of Jehovah, is that which sets in motion everything in heaven and in earth. The "I will" of Jehovah, is the spring and the origin of all that is done throughout the universe, great and small, among things animate and inanimate. It was this "I will" that brought angels into being, and still sustains them. It was this "I will" that was the origin of salvation to a lost world. It was this "I will" that provided a Redeemer, and accomplished redemption. It was this "I will" that begins, and carries on, and ends salvation in each soul that is redeemed. It is this "I will" that opens the blind eye, and unstops the deaf ear. It was this "I will" that awakens the slumberer, and raises the dead. I do not mean that, merely generally speaking, God has declared His will concerning these things: but each individual conversion, nay, and each movement that forms part of it, originates in this supreme "I will". When Jesus healed the leper, He said, "I will, be thou clean"; so when a soul is converted, there is the same distinct and special forthputting of the Divine will, "I will, be thou converted". Everything that can be called good in man, or in the universe, originates in the "I will" of Jehovah.
by Horatius Bonar (1808-1889)
Scottish minister and hymn writer

May 17, 2006

Still True Today by Ralph Barnard

One encouraging sign of the times in our day is that SOME are beginning to examine modern evangelism. Burdened, weary of trying to pastor and motivate unsaved church members, preachers are ALMOST at the place of resorting to the Bible message and method of evangelism and missions. It may be that the time is not far off when many books will be shelved and "The Book of Books" will be preached again, when preachers will quit trying to fill the pews and begin to FILL THE PULPIT, when pastors will cease to be men pleasers searching for a better place and become prophets of God seeking His face! If this happens, lawless rebels will no longer talk of patronizing the Son of God, debate whether or not they will let Him in their hearts to save them, accept Jesus as their saviour while they bow to the idols of materialism. But we will hear cries from smitten hearts which were heard in days gone by—'Men and brethren, what shall we do?" "Lord, if You will, You can make me clean." "Lord, be merciful to me, a sinner." "Lord, remember me when You come into Your kingdom."

One of the championship football teams of the past had a coach who would come into the locker room at half-time, when the team was down by two touchdowns, and say (if you will pardon the expression),"Alright, men, it's gut-sucking time." Every preacher knows what that means! It's time to quit counting the cost and start paying the price! It's time to quit building the kingdom and start tearing up some false foundations! It's time to quit getting everybody saved and start getting somebody lost!

by Rolfe Barnard

April 25, 2006

He That Believeth On The Son by Don Fortner

A preacher once asked, what he thought was a well instructed congregation, “How can a person be saved?” An old man replied, “We must repent, forsake our sins, and turn to God.” “Yes, and with a true heart,” added another. “And with prayer,” added a third. A fourth spoke up and said, “Yes, and it must be the true prayer of the heart. `The Lord looketh on the heart.’“ “And we must be diligent in keeping the commandments,” added the fifth. Each one contributing his own part, they had come up with a creed that made the preacher realize that none of them knew God.

The carnal mind, which is enmity against God, maps out a plan of salvation that gives the sinner something to do. The very reason why some who read these lines are yet without God’s salvation is just this ― Like the Jews of old, you are trying to establish righteousness and obtain God’s salvation by works rather than by faith. You stumble over the Stumblingstone. You are, in your opinion, too good to be saved by grace alone through the merits of Christ, the sinner’s Substitute (Rom. 9:32-33). There are others who clearly understand what some have called “the plan of salvation.” They know that salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. They fully understand that their own works have nothing to do with God’s salvation. They know that “Salvation is of the Lord.” But salvation is not a plan. Salvation is a Person! Many have a wretched tendency to leave Christ out of the gospel. They talk about salvation, but not about Christ. That is like leaving flour out of bread. Without Christ there is no gospel; and there is no salvation. The plan of a house will provide no shelter. Neither can “the plan of salvation” provide salvation.

If you would be saved, you must “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ.” “He that believeth on the Son hat everlasting life: he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.” Christ is the only Door of salvation, the only Way to God; but you will never be saved unless you enter in through the Door and walk in the Way by faith. It will do you no good to look at the Door, admire the Way, and gain a detailed knowledge of “the plan of salvation,” if you do not “believe on the Lord Jesus Christ.” Salvation is to be had only by personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. It cannot be had by baptism, church membership, moral reformation, or religious indoctrination. Salvation can be possessed only by personally believing on the Son of God. Will you now believe on the Son of God? Will you trust Christ alone as your Lord and Savior? If you will, if you can trust the Lord Jesus Christ, you are saved; you have been born of God. Your faith in Christ is the fruit and evidence of God’s election, Christ’s redemption, and the Holy Spirit’s effectual call. If you will not believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, you cannot be saved. The wrath of God abides on you and shall soon destroy you forever! By Don Fortner

April 17, 2006

The Authority and Inspiration of the Scriptures by B.B. Warfield

Christianity is often called a book-religion. It would be more exact to say that it is a religion which has a book. Its foundations are laid in apostles and prophets, upon which its courses are built up in the sanctified lives of men; but Christ Jesus alone is its chief corner-stone. He is its only basis; he, its only head; and he alone has authority in his Church. But he has chosen to found his Church not directly by his own hands, speaking the word of God, say for instance, in thunder-tones from heaven; but through the instrumentality of a body of apostles, chosen and trained by himself, endowed with gifts and graces from the Holy Ghost, and sent forth into the world as his authoritative agents for proclaiming a gospel which he placed within their lips and which is none the less his authoritative word, that it is through them that he speaks it. It is because the apostles were Christ's representatives, that what they did and said and wrote as such, comes to us with divine authority. The authority of the Scriptures thus rests on the simple fact that God's authoritative agents in founding the Church gave them as authoritative to the Church which they founded. All the authority of the apostles stands behind the Scriptures, and all the authority of Christ behind the apostles. – by B.B. Warfield

April 12, 2006

God willing

Ponder this question, to what extent do you believe God willing. To what do you trust to be God’s will. Do you trust it to truly be His will that your computer works ok? Do you trust it to be truly His will that you are safe and have money? Do you trust it to be truly His will and that He holds your last breath? Do you trust it to be truly His will and He decided and secured your eternal salvation? Oh wait a minute now that might be going to far… It is blasphemy to say trust in the Lord, trust in the Lord, but to never submit and trust in the Lord. To say you trust in the Lord to do and provide all things and then to say also that God loves everyone and died for everyone and it is up to you is not know or trust the Lord. At what point does man stop trusting God and instead trust themselves. It is sorrow that others will trust a sovereign God to provide and take care of the little things that in eternity mean absolutely nothing but look to themselves for the most important and greatest of all gifts that we are incapable of providing for ourselves.

Can you cry out by His grace and mercy God willing you saved me (Eph 1:5). God willing my name is in the book of Life (Rom 9:11). God willing you died for me (Rom 5:10-11). God willing you called me (Rev 19:9). Because your will would have never done it, desired it, nor could achieve it.

April 10, 2006

A grace that all can understand by J. C. Ryle

If there is one feature in Jesus' character more notable than another, it is His unwearied kindness and love. Let us, like Him, show kindness to everyone with whom we have to do. Let us strive to have . . . an eye ready to see, a hand ready to help, a heart ready to feel, and a will ready to do good to all. Let us be ready to weep with those who weep, and rejoice with those who rejoice. This is one way to recommend our religion, and make it beautiful before men.

Kindness is a grace that all can understand.

Kindness is one way to be like our blessed Savior.

Kindness is one way to be happy in the world.

Kindness always brings its own reward.

The kind person will seldom be without friends.

By J. C. Ryle

April 05, 2006

True Christian Love by A. W. PINK

Love is the Queen of the Christian graces.

It is a holy disposition given to us when we are born again by God. It is the love of God shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit. True spiritual love is characterized by meekness and gentleness, yet it is vastly superior to the courtesies and kindnesses of the flesh. We must be careful not to confuse human sentimentality, carnal pleasantries, human amiability and affability with true spiritual love. The love God commands, first to Himself and then to others, is not human love. It is not the indulgent, self-seeking love which is in us by nature. If we indulgently allow our children to grow up with little or, no Scriptural discipline, Proverbs plainly says we do not love them, regardless of the human sentimentality and affection we may feel for them. Love is not a sentimental pampering of one another with a loose indifference as to our walk and obedience before the Lord. Glossing over one another's faults to ingratiate ourselves in their esteem is not spiritual love. The true nature of Christian love is a righteous principle which seeks the highest good of others. It is a powerful desire to promote their welfare. The exercise of love is to be in strict conformity to the revealed will of God.

We must love in the truth. Love among the brethren is far more than an agreeable society where views are the same. It is loving them for what we see of Christ in them, loving them for Christ's sake. The Lord Jesus Himself is our example. He was not only thoughtful, gentle, self-sacrificing and patient, but He also corrected His mother, used a whip in the Temple, severely scolded His doubting disciples, and denounced hypocrites. True spiritual love is above all faithful to God and uncompromising towards all that is evil. We cannot declare, 'Peace and Safety' when in reality there is spiritual decay and ruin! True spiritual love is very difficult to exercise because it is not our natural love. By nature we would rather love sentimentally and engender good feelings. Also many times true spiritual love is not received in love, but is hated as the Pharisees hated it.

We must pray that God will fill us with His love and enable us to exercise it without dissimulation toward all. By A.W. Pink

April 03, 2006

Duties of Parents to their Children Part I by John Bunyan

IF thou art a parent, a father or a mother, then thou art to consider thy calling under this relation. Thy children have souls, and they must be begotten of God as well as of thee, or they perish. And know also, that unless thou be very circumspect in thy behavior to and before them, they may perish through thee: the thoughts of which should provoke thee, both to instruct, and also to correct them.

To instruct them as the scripture saith, and to "bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord;" and to do this diligently "when thou sittest in thine house, when thou walkest by the way, when thou liest down, and when thou risest up." (Eph. 6:4; Deut. 6:7.)
Now to do this to purpose:—
- 1. Do it in terms and words easy to be understood: affect not high expressions, they will drown your children. Thus God spake to his children (Hos. 12:10), and Paul to his. (1 Cor. 3:2.)
- 2. Take heed of filling their heads with whimsies and unprofitable notions, for this will sooner learn them to be malapert (impudent) and proud, than sober and humble. Open therefore to them the state of man by nature; discourse with them of sin, of death, and hell; of a crucified Savior, and the promise of life through faith: "Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it." (Prov. 22:6.)
- 3. There must be much gentleness and patience in all thy instructions, "lest they be discouraged." (Col. 3:21.)
- 4. Labor to convince them by a conversation answerable, that the things of which thou instructest them are not fables, but realities; yea, and realities so far above what can be here enjoyed, that all things, were they a thousand times better than they are, are not worthy to be compared with the glory and worthiness of these things. Isaac was so holy before his children, that when Jacob remembered God, he remembered that he was the Fear of his father Isaac. (Gen. 31:53.)

John Bunyan

April 02, 2006

Duties of Parents to their Children Part II by John Bunyan

IF thou art a parent, a father or a mother, then thou art to consider thy calling under this relation. Thy children have souls, and they must be begotten of God as well as of thee, or they perish. And know also, that unless thou be very circumspect in thy behavior to and before them, they may perish through thee: the thoughts of which should provoke thee, both to instruct, and also to correct them.

Ah! when children can think of their parents, and bless God for that instruction and good they have received from them, this is not only profitable for children, but honorable and comfortable to parents: "The father of the righteous shall greatly rejoice: and he that begetteth a wise child shall have joy of him." (Prov. 23:24,25).
Now, The duty of correction:—
- 1. See if fair words will win them from evil. This is God's way with his children. (Jer. 25:4,5.)
- 2. Let those words you speak to them in your reproof, be both sober, few, and pertinent, adding always some suitable sentence of the scripture therewith: as, if they lie, then such as Rev. 21:8,27; if they refuse to hear the word, such as 2 Chron. 25:14-16.
- 3. Look to them, that they be not companions with those that are rude and ungodly; showing with soberness a continual dislike of their naughtiness; often crying out to them, as God did of old unto his, "Oh, do not this abominable thing that I hate." (Jer. 44:4.)
- 4. Let all this be mixed with such love, pity, and compunction of spirit (pricking of conscience or heart), that if possible they may be convinced you dislike not their persons, but their sins. This is God's way. (Psa. 99:8.)
- 5. Be often endeavoring to fasten on their consciences the day of their death, and judgment to come. Thus also God deals with his. (Deut. 32:29.)
- 6. If thou art driven to the rod, then strike advisedly in cool blood, and soberly show them, (1) their fault; (2) how much it is against thy heart thus to deal with them; (3) and that what thou dost, thou dost in conscience to God and love to their souls; (4) and tell them that if fair means would have done, none of this severity should have been. This, I have proved it, will be a means to afflict their hearts as well as their bodies; and it being the way that God deals with his, it is the most likely to accomplish its end.
- 7. Follow all this with prayer to God for them, and leave the issue to him: "Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; but the rod of correction shall drive it far from him." (Prov. 22:15.)

John Bunyan

March 29, 2006

Some Time Were Understand by Max Cornelius

Not now, but in the coming years,
It may be in the better land,
We'll read the meaning of our tears,
And there, some time, we'll understand.

We'll catch the broken threads again,
And finish what we here began;
Heaven will the mysteries explain,
And then, ah, then, we'll understand.

We'll know why clouds instead of sun
Were over many a cherished plan;
Why song has ceased when scarce begun;
'Tis there, some time, we'll understand.

Why what we long for most of all
Eludes so oft our eager hand;
Why hopes are crushed and castles fall,
Up there, some time, we'll understand.

God knows the way, He holds the key,
He guides us with unerring hand;
Some time with tearless eyes we'll see;
Yes, there, up there, we'll understand.
— Maxwell N. Cornelius

March 27, 2006

Lord's Supper by John Calvin

Our Lord instituted the Supper, first, in order to sign and seal in our consciences the promises contained in his gospel concerning our being made partakers of his body and blood, and to give us certainty and assurance that therein lies our trio spiritual nourishment, and that having such an earnest, we may entertain a right reliance on salvation. Secondly, in order to exercise us in recognizing his great goodness toward us, and thus lead us to laud and magnify him more fully. Thirdly, in order to exhort us to all holiness and innocence, inasmuch as we are members of Jesus Christ; and specially to exhort us to union and brotherly charity, as we are expressly commanded. When we shall have well considered these three reasons, to which the Lord had respect in ordaining his Supper, we shall be able to understand, both what benefit accrues to us from it, and what is our duty in order to use it. properly. By John Calvin

March 16, 2006

The city was full of idols! By J. C. Ryle

"While Paul was waiting for them in Athens, his spirit was troubled within him when he saw that the city was full of idols!" Acts 17:16

Man will have a religion of some kind, for human nature, corrupt as it is, must have a god. But it will be a religion without light, or peace, or hope. The feelings with which we regard sin, heathenism, and false religion are a subject of vast importance. It is a sorrowful fact, that most professing Christians regard the semi-heathen districts of our country with apathy, coolness, and indifference. But Paul was deeply troubled when he saw that the city was full of idols!

Paul was stirred with holy compassion. It troubled his heart to see so many myriads perishing for lack of knowledge--without God, without Christ, having no hope, traveling in the broad road which leads to destruction!

Paul was stirred with holy indignation against sin and the devil. He saw the god of this world blinding the eyes of multitudes of his fellow-men, and leading them captive at his will. He saw the natural corruption of man infecting the population of a vast city like one common disease, and an utter absence of any spiritual medicine, antidote, or remedy!

Paul was stirred with holy zeal for His Master's glory. He saw his Divine Master unknown and unrecognized by His own creatures--and idols receiving the homage due to the King of kings! Millions of immortal beings at this moment are sunk in ignorance, superstition, and idolatry! They live and die without God, without Christ, and without hope! Ought not these things to stir our hearts? Ought not our hearts to be affected by the sight of false religion and heathenism? We ought to feel compassion when we think of the wretched state of unconverted souls, and the misery of all who live and die without Christ! By J. C. Ryle

March 14, 2006

If God had left me alone by Charles Spurgeon

Sometimes, when I see some of the worst characters in the street, I feel as if my heart must burst forth in tears of gratitude that God has never let me act as they have done! I have thought, "If God had left me alone, and had not touched me by His grace, what a great sinner I would have been! I would have run to the utmost lengths of sin, dived into the very depths of evil. Nor would I have stopped at any vice or folly, if God had not restrained me!"

I feel that I would have been a very king of sinners, if God had left me alone. I cannot understand the reason why I am saved, except upon the ground that God would have it so. I cannot, if I look ever so earnestly, discover any kind of reason in myself why I should be a partaker of Divine grace. By Charles Spurgeon

March 08, 2006

Christian Love by John A. James & Jonathan Edwards

"Necessary fruits of our doctrines" by John Angell James
Let us remember that HUMILITY and LOVE are the necessary fruits of our doctrines, and the highest beauty of our character! True Christian love must be . . . blended with all our habits, diffused through all our conduct, forming our character, breathing in our desires, speaking in our words, beaming in our eyes. This is true religion--practical religion. By John Angell James

"If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains--but have not love, I am nothing!" 1 Corinthians 13:2

"Charity and its Fruit" by Jonathan Edwards,

Holy and humble Christian love, is a principle of wonderful power to give ineffable quietness and tranquility to the soul. It banishes all disturbance, and sweetly composes and brings rest to the spirit, and makes all divinely calm and sweet and happy. In that soul where divine love reigns and is in lively exercise, nothing can cause a storm, or even gather threatening clouds. By Jonathan Edwards

"Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love." 1 John 4:8

March 06, 2006

Ministers should Be by Jonathan Edwards

It is not only our great duty, but will be our greatest honor, to imitate Christ, and do the work that he has done, and so act as co-workers with him.

The ministers of Christ should be persons of the same spirit that their Lord was of—the same spirit of humility and lowliness of heart; for the servant is not greater than his Lord.

They should be of the same spirit of heavenly mindedness, and contempt of the glory, wealth, and pleasures of this world.

They should be of the same spirit of devotion and fervent love to God. They should follow the example of his prayerfulness; of whom we read from time to time of his retiring from the world, away from the noise and applause of the multitudes, into mountains and solitary places, for secret prayer, and holy converse with his Father.

Ministers should be persons of the same quiet, lamb like spirit that Christ was of, the same spirit of submission to God’s will, and patience under afflictions, and meekness towards men; of the same calmness and composure of spirit under reproaches and sufferings from the malignity of evil men; of the same spirit of forgiveness of injuries; of the same spirit of charity, of fervent love and extensive benevolence; the same disposition to pity the miserable, to weep with those that weep, to help men under their calamities of both soul and body, to hear and grant the requests of the needy, and relieve afflicted; the same spirit of condescension to the poor and lowly, tenderness and gentleness toward the weak, and great and effectual love to enemies.

They should also be of the same spirit of zeal, diligence, and self-denial for the glory of God, and advancement for his kingdom, and for the good of mankind; for which things sake Christ went though the greatest labors, and endured the most extreme sufferings. And in order to our imitating Christ in the work of the ministry, in any tolerable degree, we should not have our hearts weighed down, and time filled up with worldly affections, cares, and pursuits. The duties of a minister that have been recommended, are absolutely inconsistent with a mind much taken up with worldly profit, glory, amusements, and entertainments. By Jonathan Edwards

February 20, 2006

True Christian Love by A. W. PINK

Love is the Queen of the Christian graces.

It is a holy disposition given to us when we are born again by God. It is the love of God shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Spirit. True spiritual love is characterized by meekness and gentleness, yet it is vastly superior to the courtesies and kindnesses of the flesh. We must be careful not to confuse human sentimentality, carnal pleasantries, human amiability and affability with true spiritual love. The love God commands, first to Himself and then to others, is not human love. It is not the indulgent, self-seeking love which is in us by nature. If we indulgently allow our children to grow up with little or, no Scriptural discipline, Proverbs plainly says we do not love them, regardless of the human sentimentality and affection we may feel for them.

Love is not a sentimental pampering of one another with a loose indifference as to our walk and obedience before the Lord. Glossing over one another's faults to ingratiate ourselves in their esteem is not spiritual love. The true nature of Christian love is a righteous principle which seeks the highest good of others. It is a powerful desire to promote their welfare. The exercise of love is to be in strict conformity to the revealed will of God. We must love in the truth. Love among the brethren is far more than an agreeable society where views are the same. It is loving them for what we see of Christ in them, loving them for Christ's sake.

The Lord Jesus Himself is our example. He was not only thoughtful, gentle, self-sacrificing and patient, but He also corrected His mother, used a whip in the Temple, severely scolded His doubting disciples, and denounced hypocrites. True spiritual love is above all faithful to God and uncompromising towards all that is evil. We cannot declare, 'Peace and Safety' when in reality there is spiritual decay and ruin! True spiritual love is very difficult to exercise because it is not our natural love. By nature we would rather love sentimentally and engender good feelings. Also many times true spiritual love is not received in love, but is hated as the Pharisees hated it. We must pray that God will fill us with His love and enable us to exercise it without dissimulation toward all. By A.W. Pink

February 16, 2006

The back door to Hell by C.H. Spurgeon

Better not to have known the way of righteousness than, having known it, to be turned back again. The worst of men are those traitors who leave the army of truth to side with the foe. I believe in the doctrine of the final perseverance of every true child of God; but there are in all our churches certain spurious pretenders who will not hold on their way, who will blaze and sparkle for a season, and then they will go out in darkness. They are "wandering stars, for whom is reserved the blackness of darkness forever." Better far make no pretension of having come to Christ, and of having been born again, unless through divine grace you shall hold fast to the end.

Remember the back door to hell! Remember the back door to hell! There is a public entrance for the open sinner; but there is a back door for the merely professed saint. There is a back door for the hoary-headed professor, who has lived many years in apparent sincerity, but who has been a liar before God. There is a back door for the preacher who can talk fast and loudly, but who does not in his own heart know the truth he is preaching. There is a back door to hell for church members, who are amiable and excellent in many respects, but who have not really looked unto the Lord Jesus Christ and found true salvation in him. God grant that this may wake some, who otherwise would sleep themselves into perdition!

"O my God! my God! Am I, after all, mistaken? Have I played the hypocrite, and must I take the mask off now? Have I covered over the cancer? Have I worn a golden cloth over my leprous forehead, and must it be torn away? and must I stand, the mock of devils and the laughter of all worlds? What! have I drunk of your cup, have I eaten with you in the streets, and must I hear you say, I never knew you, depart from me you worker of iniquity? Oh! must it be?" by Charles Spurgeon

February 13, 2006

What should be preached? Todd Nibert

Col 1:14 In whom we have redemption through his blood, even the forgiveness of sins:

"That repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name." Most of what is preached should not be preached, because it is not true to scripture. But here the Lord tells us what should be preached. Repentance and remission of sins. What does that mean? How often have you tortured yourself over a mis-understanding of repentance. Have I really repented? Is my repentance deep enough and sincere enough? What does the Bible mean by repentance? The word means literally "a change of mind". Repentance and the remission of sins are not two different parts of the Gospel message. This could just as easily read.... "Repentance toward or concerning the remission of sins." A "change of mind" concerning the remission of sins. We all naturally think that the remission, or forgiveness of sins comes to us through our doing something. Repentance is changing your way of thinking regarding how we have the remission of sins! We have the remission of sins through the work of the Lord Jesus on Calvary's Tree! "In whom we have redemption through His blood, even the forgiveness of sins" Col. 1:14. The remission of sins was accomplished for the elect when He died on the cross. "It is finished" .....means.....remission of sins is accomplished. If we are granted a change of mind concerning the remission of sins, we will have a change of mind concerning everything else! Somebody once said, "Repentance is a change of mind, but, oh what a change." This changes your mind concerning how you think about God, sin, salvation, and every aspect of your life. When one's mind is changed concerning the remission sins, his motive is changed in serving Christ, and his manners (conduct) will necessarily be changed. There is no true obedience to Christ that is not founded on an understanding of how our sins are remitted through Christ. "Be ye kind, tenderhearted, forgiving one another even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you. (Eph. 4:32).

by Todd Nibert

February 10, 2006

Warnings concerning the Lord’s Table. by J. C. Ryle

I know not in what state of mind this book may find the reader of this paper, or what his opinions may be about the Lord's Supper. But I will conclude the whole subject by offering to all some warnings, which I venture to think are highly required by the times.

(1) In the first place, "do not neglect" the Lord's Supper. The man who coolly and deliberately refuses to use an ordinance which the Lord Jesus Christ appointed for his profit, may be very sure that his soul is in a very wrong state. There is a judgment to come; there is, an account to be rendered of all our conduct on earth. How any one can look forward to that day, and expect to meet Christ with comfort and in peace, if he has refused all his life to commune with Christ at His Table, is a thing that I cannot understand. Does this hit home to you? Be careful what you are doing.

(2) In the second place, "do not receive the Lord's Supper carelessly," irreverently, and as a matter of form. The man who goes to the Lord's Table, and eats the bread and drinks the wine, while his heart is far away, is committing a great sin, and robbing himself of a great blessing. In this, as in every other means of grace, every thing depends on the state of mind in which the ordinance is used. He that draws near without repentance, faith, and love, and with a heart full of sin and the world, will certainly be nothing better, but rather worse. Does this hit home to you? Be careful what you are doing.

(3) In the third place, "do not make an idol" of the Lord's Supper. The man who tells you that it is the first, foremost, chief, and principal precept in Christianity, is telling you that which he will find it hard to prove. In the great majority of the books of the New Testament the Lord's Supper is not even named. In the letter to Timothy and Titus, about a minister's duties, the subject is not even mentioned. To repent and be converted, to believe and be holy, to be born again and have grace in our hearts--all these things are of far more importance than to be a communicant. Without them we cannot be saved. Without the Lord's Supper we can. Are you tempted to make the Lord's Supper override and overshadow everything in Christianity, and place it above prayer and preaching? Be careful. Pay attention what you are doing.

(4) In the fourth place, "do not use the Lord's Supper irregularly." Never be absent when the Lord's Supper is administered. Make every effort to be in attendance. Regular habits are essential to the maintenance of the health of our bodies. Regular use of the Lord's Supper is essential to the well-being of our souls. The man who finds it a burden to attend on every occasion when the Lord's Table is spread, may well doubt whether all is right within him, and whether he is ready for the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. If Thomas had not been absent when the Lord appeared the first time to the assembled disciples, he would not have said the foolish things he did. Absence made him miss a blessing. Does this hit home to you? Be careful what you are doing.

(5) In the fifth place, "do not do anything to bring discredit" on your profession as a communicant. The man who after attending the Lord's Table runs into sin, does more harm perhaps than any sinner. He is a walking sermon on behalf of the devil. He gives opportunity to the enemies of the Lord to blaspheme. He helps to keep people away from Christ. Lying, drinking, adulterous, dishonest, passionate communicants are the helpers of the devil, and the worst enemies of the Gospel. Does this hit home to you? Be careful what you are doing.

(6) In the last place, "do not despair" and be cast down, if with all your desires you do not feel that you get a lot of good from the Lord's Supper. Very likely you are expecting too much. Very likely you are a poor judge of your own state. Your soul's roots may be strengthening and growing, while you think you are not growing. Very likely you are forgetting that earth is not heaven, and that here we walk by sight and not by faith, and must expect nothing perfect. Lay these things to heart. Do not think harsh things about yourself without cause.

To every reader into whose hands this paper may fall, I commend the whole subject of it as deserving of serious and solemn consideration. I am nothing, better than a poor or fallible man myself. But if I have made up my mind on any point it is this--that there is no truth which demands such plain speaking, as truth about the Lord's Supper. Taken in part from J.C. Ryle's book The Lord's Supper.

Other parts of his letter:
Why was the Lord’s Supper ordained?

Who ought to receive the Lord’s Supper?

What benefits are in receiving the Lord’s Table

What effects are in receiving the Lord’s Table

Warnings concerning the Lord’s Table

February 09, 2006

What effects are in receiving the Lord’s Supper? by J. C. Ryle

(a) Right reception of the Lord's Supper has a "humbling" effect on the soul. The sight of the bread and wine as emblems of Christ's body and blood, reminds us how sinful sin must be, if nothing less than the death of God's own Son could make satisfaction for it, or redeem us from its guilt. Never should we be so "clothed with humility," as when we receive the Lord's Supper.

(b) Right reception of the Lord's Supper has a "cheering" effect on the soul. The sight of the bread broken, and the wine poured out, reminds us how full, perfect, and complete is our salvation. Those vivid emblems remind us what an enormous price has been paid for our redemption. They press on us the mighty truth, that believing on Christ, we have nothing to fear, because a sufficient payment has been made for our debt. The "precious blood of Christ" answers every charge that can be brought against us. God can be "just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus" (Romans 3:26).

(c) Right reception of the Lord's Supper has a "sanctifying" effect on the soul. The bread and wine remind us how great is our debt of gratitude to our Lord, and how thoroughly we are bound to live for Him who died for our sins. They seem to say to us, "Remember what Christ has done for you, and ask yourself whether there is anything too great to do for Him."

(d) Right reception of the Lord's Supper into hearts, has a restraining effect on the soul. Every time a believer receives the bread and the wine he is reminded what a serious thing it is to be a Christian, and what an obligation is laid on him to lead a consistent life. Bought with such a price as that bread and wine call to his recollection, ought he not to glorify Christ in body and spirit, which are His? The man that goes regularly and intelligently to the Lord's Table finds it increasingly hard to yield to sin and conform to the world.

Taken in part from J.C. Ryle's book The Lord's Supper.

Other parts of his letter:
Why was the Lord’s Supper ordained?

Who ought to receive the Lord’s Supper?

What benefits are in receiving the Lord’s Table

What effects are in receiving the Lord’s Table

Warnings concerning the Lord’s Table

February 08, 2006

What benefits are in receiving the Lord's Supper? by J. C. Ryle

Let us settle it firmly in our minds that the Lord's Supper was not given to be a means either of justification or of conversion. It was never meant to give grace where there is no grace already, or to provide pardon when pardon is not already enjoyed. It cannot possibly provide what is lacking with the absence of repentance to God, and faith toward the Lord Jesus Christ. It is an ordinance for the penitent, not for the impenitent, for the believing, not for the unbelieving, for the converted, not for the unconverted. The unconverted man, who fancies that be can find a "shortcut" to heaven by taking the Lord's Supper, without treading the well-worn steps of repentance and faith, will find to his cost one day, that he is totally deceived. The Lord's Supper was meant to increase and help the grace that a man has, but not to impart the grace that he does not have. It was certainly never intended to make our peace with God, to justify, or to convert.

The simplest statement of the benefit which a truehearted communicant may expect to receive from the Lord's Supper, is the strengthening and refreshing of our souls--clearer views of Christ and His atonement, clearer views of all the offices which Christ, fills as our Mediator and Advocate, clearer views of the complete redemption Christ has obtained for us by His substituted death on the cross, clearer views of our full and perfect acceptance in Christ before God, fresh reasons for deep repentance for sin, fresh reasons for lively faith--these are among the leading returns which a believer may confidently expect to get from his attendance at the Lord's Table. He that eats the bread and drinks the wine in a right spirit, will find himself drawn into closer communion with Christ, and will feel to know Him more, and understand Him better. Taken in part from J.C. Ryle's book The Lord's Supper.

Other parts of his letter:
Why was the Lord’s Supper ordained?

Who ought to receive the Lord’s Supper?

What benefits are in receiving the Lord’s Table

What effects are in receiving the Lord’s Table

Warnings concerning the Lord’s Table

February 07, 2006

Who ought to receive the Lord's Supper? by J. C. Ryle

It is not right to urge all professing Christians to go to the Lord's Table. There is such a thing as fitness and preparedness for the ordinance. It does not work like a medicine, independently of the state of mind of those who receive it. The teaching of those who urge all their congregation to come to the Lord's Table, as if the coming must necessarily do every one good, is entirely without warrant of Scripture. No, rather, it is a teaching which is calculated to do immense harm to men's souls, and to turn the reception of the Lord's Supper into a mere form. Ignorance can never be the mother of acceptable worship, and an ignorant communicant who comes to the Lord's Table without knowing why he comes, is altogether in the wrong place. "A man ought to examine himself before he eats of the bread and drinks of the cup."--"recognizing the body of the Lord,"--that is to understand what the elements of bread and wine represent, and why they are appointed, and what is the particular use of remembering Christ's death--is an essential qualification of a true communicant. God commands all people everywhere to repent and believe the Gospel (Acts 17:30), but He does not in the same way, or in the same manner, command everybody to come to the Lord's Table. No: this thing is not to be taken lightly, or carelessly! It is a solemn ordinance, and solemnly it ought to be used. The plain truth is that the Lord's Supper was not meant for dead souls, but for living ones. The careless, the ignorant, the willfully wicked, the self-righteous, are no more fit to come to the Lord's Table than a dead corpse is fit to sit down at a king's feast. To enjoy a spiritual feast we must have a spiritual heart, and taste, and appetite. To suppose that the Lord's Table can do any good to an unspiritual man, is as foolish as to put bread and wine into the mouth of a dead person. The careless, the ignorant, and the willfully wicked, so long as they continue in that state, are utterly unfit to come to the Lord's Supper. To urge them to partake is not to do them good but harm. The Lord's Supper is not a converting or justifying ordinance. If a man goes to the Table unconverted or unforgiven, he will be no better when he comes away (actually worse due to the associated judgments for coming unworthily). Taken in part from J.C. Ryle's book The Lord's Supper.

Other parts of his letter:
Why was the Lord’s Supper ordained?

Who ought to receive the Lord’s Supper?

What benefits are in receiving the Lord’s Table

What effects are in receiving the Lord’s Table

Warnings concerning the Lord’s Table

February 06, 2006

Why was the Lord's Supper ordained? by J.C. Ryle

It was ordained for the continual remembrance of the sacrifice of the death of Christ, and of the benefits which we thereby receive. The bread which in the Lord's Supper is broken, given, and eaten, is meant to remind us of Christ's body given on the cross for our sins. The wine which is poured out and received, is meant to remind us of Christ's blood shed on the cross for our sins. He that eats that bread and drinks that wine is reminded, in the most striking and forcible manner, of the benefits Christ has obtained for his soul, and of the death of Christ as the hinge and turning point on which all those benefits depend.

Now, is the view here stated the doctrine of the New Testament? If it is not, forever let it be rejected, cast aside, and refused by men. If it is, let us never be ashamed to hold it close, profess our belief in it, pin our faith on it, and steadfastly refuse to hold any other view, no matter who teaches it. In subjects like this we must call no man master. It matters little what great theologians and learned preachers have thought fit to put forth about the Lord's Supper. If they teach more than the Word of God contains they are not to be believed. Taken in part from J.C. Ryle's book The Lord's Supper.

Other parts of his letter:
Why was the Lord’s Supper ordained?

Who ought to receive the Lord’s Supper?

What benefits are in receiving the Lord’s Table

What effects are in receiving the Lord’s Table

Warnings concerning the Lord’s Table

January 31, 2006

What is election by Eric Wilson

Whatever is done was foreordained and decided before time by the council of His own will (Eph 1:11). I had two concerns when addressing this subject. First we are told that great harm may come from declaring the truth of election, because it may offend someone who is searching. Second I thought I should defend my doctrine to questions I receive from those who don’t believe. As for the second, we should never consider it as defending that which is unconditional and by God’s revelation. We must understand that it is not our doctrine that they hate; it is the doctrine of God (John 7:7). In addition I fear when it becomes “I” or “My” we lose sight of Him. Let us then look only to the scriptures. For it is impossible to believe the scriptures to be the Word of God and not believe that salvation is of His own will. This may be my opinion but I believe there are more passages that deal with God’s sovereignty and election than any other theological topic I covered. This easily answers my first concern, for any one to believe that God was not the best judge of what or how much is to be known denies God’s providence. For “we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose” (Rom 8:28).

I must stress that this is not mine or simple a Calvinistic doctrine, but God’s (Eph 1:11). Election stands on God is absolutely sovereign. A conditional sovereignty is to say a limited sovereignty. You have not chosen Him but He has chosen you (Jhn 15:16). Election is eternal, taking place before time (Eph 1:4). An Election routed in the foreknowledge of a god assumes you have anything to contribute and gives man power of God’s decrees (Rom 9:11). Election is an unmerited gift of the giver (Rom 11:5). If you add or contribute anything it is not of grace and if not of His free offer and so then it is not election it is dept. “knowing brethren beloved your election of God “ (I Thes 1:4). Election is unto salvation (II Thes 2:13). Many have a false impression of a god standing at the door to heaven rejecting some and permitting others to enter. Dear reader we know that He does not turn away any who seek and knock. The problem is no one is banging down the door. It may be better if one visualizes everyone going to hell deservingly and willfully. And out of pure mercy, and with God’s sovereign electing grace, He pulls some away to the praise of His glory (Eph 1:6).

Oh I pray we make election a savory meat that feeds our soul. Election is a fact that brings Christians assurance and encouragement (Rom 8:33). Prize this truth and hold it firmly. Thank Him that you are a partaker. That the sovereign electing grace of God choose you a sinner while you were dead in sins to repentance, to faith, and afterwards to holiness of living, to Christian service, and a zeal for Him and devotion in His Word.

January 30, 2006

My sheep by J. C. Ryle

"My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me." (John 10:27)

This verse gives the character of true Christians.

1. God's children, His real believing people, are compared to sheep, because they are gentle, quiet, harmless and inoffensive; because they are useful and do good to all around them; because they love to be together, and dislike separation; and because they are very helpless and wandering and liable to stray.

2. Jesus calls them "My sheep," as if they were His peculiar property. "Mine," He would have us know, by election; "Mine" by purchase; and "Mine" by adoption.

3. Christ's sheep hear His voice, they listen humbly to His teaching, they take His word for their rule and guide.

4. Christ's sheep follow Him, they walk in the narrow path He has marked out, they do not refuse because it is sometimes steep and narrow--but wherever the line of duty lies they go forward without doubting.

by J.C. Ryle

January 24, 2006

The Mighty Breaker by Charles Spurgeon

"There brake He the arrows of the bow, the shield, and the sword, and the battle." --Psalm 76:3

Our Redeemer's glorious cry of "It is finished," was the death-knell of all the adversaries of His people, the breaking of "the bow and the battle." Behold the hero of Golgotha using His cross as an anvil, and His woes as a hammer, dashing to shivers bundle after bundle of our sins, those poisoned "arrows of the bow"; trampling on every indictment, and destroying every accusation. What glorious blows the mighty Breaker gives with a hammer far more ponderous than the fabled weapon of Thor! How the diabolical darts fly to fragments, and the infernal bucklers are broken like potters' vessels! Behold, He draws from its sheath of hellish workmanship the dread sword of Satanic power! He snaps it across His knee, as a man breaks the dry wood of a fagot, and casts it into the fire.

Beloved, no sin of a believer can now be an arrow mortally to wound him, no condemnation can now be a sword to kill him, for the punishment of our sin was borne by Christ, a full atonement was made for all our iniquities by our blessed Substitute and Surety. Who now accuseth? Who now condemneth? Christ hath died, yea rather, hath risen again. Jesus has emptied the quivers of hell, has quenched every fiery dart, and broken off the head of every arrow of wrath; the ground is strewn with the splinters and relics of the weapons of hell's warfare, which are only visible to us to remind us of our former danger, and of our great deliverance. Sin hath no more dominion over us. Jesus has made an end of it, and put it away for ever. O thou enemy, destructions are come to a perpetual end. Talk ye of all the wondrous works of the Lord, ye who make mention of His name, keep not silence, neither by day, nor when the sun goeth to his rest. Bless the Lord, O my soul.

by C.H. Spurgeon

Gleaned from brother Doug Eaton’s site at Godward Thoughts