Monthly Archives: July 2010

What Have I Done?

A little of this an a little of that is real little this morning… but Spurgeon will do.

What have you done for him who died
to save your wretched soul?

What have you done for his church?

What have you done for the salvation of the world?

What have you done to promote your
own spiritual growth in grace?

Ah! I might hit some of you that are true Christians
very hard here; but I will leave you with your God.
God will chastise his own children.

I will, however, put a pointed question to you–
Are there not many Christians who cannot recollect that they
have been the means of the salvation of one soul during this

Come, now; look back.
Have you any reason to believe that directly or indirectly you
have been made the means this year of the salvation of a soul?

I will go further.

There are some of you who are older Christians,
and I will ask you this question:
Have you any reason to believe that ever since
you were converted you have ever been the means
of the salvation of a soul?

It was reckoned in the East, in the time of the patriarchs,
to be a disgrace to a woman if she had no children.
And yet, there are some of you here that have been spiritually
barren, and have never brought one convert to Christ.

You have not one star in your crown of glory,
and must wear a starless crown in heaven.

Oh! How many have you brought during this year?

Come, Christian, what have you done?

Alas! alas! you have not been barren fig-trees,
but still your fruit is such that it cannot be seen.

You may be alive unto God, but how many of you have
been very unprofitable and exceedingly unfruitful?

From Spurgeon’s sermon, “What Have I Done?”

HT:Grace Gems

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Divorce Part 2

I almost feel like Jude when he said in the beginning of his epistle that he wanted to write to his readers about their “common salvation”, to encourage them but was compelled to address another issue. I would much rather talk about salvation and the implications of it, however, divorce is an important issue and we need to address it. God instituted marriage in the second chapter of Genesis; “For this cause a man shall leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave to his wife; and they shall become one flesh”(Gen. 2:24). Now, the great majority of people in this world do not believe that the Bible is the Word of God and if they did, multitudes of “light bulbs” would come on concerning the understanding of marriage. For in this verse it is clear that God’s intention for marriage is that it be monogamous, heterosexual and a complete union between a man and woman. In Mark 10:7-9 the same verse is repeated but Jesus adds this, “What God has joined together, let no man separate”, meaning that marriage is meant to be permanent as well. The Hebrew word that’s translated “cleave” can also mean cling, joined together, hold fast, stick together and stuck.

So, putting all these nuances together we can say that God’s intention for a man and woman in marriage is to be “super-glued” together for life! Not that their personalities are blended into one…. NO.. because they remain two separate and unique personalities. But they are super-glued together in the sense that they are bonded not only physically but emotionally and spiritually as well. Why? Well, have you ever tried to break something apart that was super-glued together? Easy, right? Here’s what this super-gluing is all about. When God joins a man and woman in marriage they are super-glued together physically, emotionally and spiritually; because when the hard and difficult things of life come to overwhelm them, they will stand firm. A marriage that is solidly bonded together can withstand anything that life can throw at them! That includes the possibility of divorce!

I want to switch gears here and comment on something that I see is very important. We know what God’s ideal is because we just talked about it. That being said, we also know that we live in this fallen world. Marriage as ordained by God was intended to be permanent, certain circumstances, however, defy resolution. Sorry, I’m not going there; you need to grab your bible and figure out what circumstances defy resolution. Be a Berean!

My question is: What happens to believers who are or who have been divorced? In other words, how does the church (bible believing church) respond to them? There is a wide range of responses from different denominations. For sure, two questions need to be asked: 1) Was the divorce before or after conversion? and 2) Was it a biblically permissible divorce? I have personally been in a church where the leadership didn’t allow a divorced person even to be an usher. How sad! The point I want to leave you with is that no matter what the circumstances of a particular divorce and no matter how the questions are answered, there is a place in Christ’s church for those who have been divorced. Does anybody remember the “woman at the well”(John 4); look at how God used her! In His service Marty. If you missed Part 1 on Divorce go Here

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Creation: What’s the Point?

A Word of Warning to Uniformitarian Scoffers

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Die to Self, Surrender to Christ – Paul Washer

Therefore I urge you, brethren, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to God, which is your spiritual service of worship.And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. Romans 12:1-2

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God: Creator, Judge, Redeemer

And I saw another angel flying in midheaven, having an eternal gospel to preach to those who live on the earth, and to every nation and tribe and tongue and people; and he said with a loud voice, “Fear God, and give Him glory, because the hour of His judgment has come; worship Him who made the heaven and the earth and sea and springs of waters.” Revelation 14:6-7

Redemption: The Grand Design of the Universe

Remember the first events, because I am God, and there is no other. I am God, and there’s no one like me.Declaring the end from the beginning, And from ancient times things which have not been done, Saying, ‘My purpose will be established, And I will accomplish all My good pleasure’;Isaiah 46:9-10

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What I Learned In Church Yesterday… The Heart of a Servant

Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Philippians 2:5-7

This is really mind-boggling for me… to try to put these wonderful, amazing words all together in my brain and say… Oh I understand how it all worked… Because I don’t completely, but I will not answer back at God and say this just can’t be. On the contrary, who are you, O man, who answers back to God? Romans 9:20

To read He existed in the form of God and emptied Himself is enough for me to take on this morning. Existed (huparcho) literally means to begin under and then to exist, be present or be at hand. Existed  (huparcho) in the present tense (continuous) clearly signifies that Jesus continually existed in the form of God. John 17:5 “Now, Father, glorify Me together with Yourself, with the glory which I had with You before the world was.

Form (morphe) refers to the nature or character of something and emphasizes both the internal and external form. In other words morphe refers to the outward display of the inner reality or the essential form of something which never alters.

John MacArthur states in his Philippians commentary morphe means that… the idea is that, before the Incarnation, from all eternity past, Jesus preexisted in the divine form of God, equal with God the Father in every way. By His very nature and innate being, Jesus Christ is, always has been, and will forever be fully divine.

Wuest adds “No one could be in the form (morphe) of God who was not God.”

In Matthew 17:2 And He was transfigured before them; and His face shone like the sun, and His garments became as white as light. the mode of His expression was changed. He gave expression to the essence of His deity in which He is a co-participant with God the Father and God the Holy Spirit.

One writer puts it this way To give expression to the essence of deity implies the possession of deity. What Peter, James, and John witnessed on the Mount of Transfiguration was a glimpse of the outward expression of His deity.

2 Corinthians 5:21 Tells us that He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” The greatest act of obedience and unselfishness. He emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men that He might save those who believe through the message preached. 1 Corinthians 1:21

So our Lord did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” Mark 10:45  How to comprehend all this… I don’t fully… I just echo the words of the Apostle Paul and praise God that He chose me and died for me so I can spend eternity with Him. Paul writes Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways! 34  For WHO HAS KNOWN THE MIND OF THE LORD, OR WHO BECAME HIS COUNSELOR? 35  Or WHO HAS FIRST GIVEN TO HIM THAT IT MIGHT BE PAID BACK TO HIM AGAIN? 36  For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen. Romans 11:33-36

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The Biggest Mission

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A little of this and a little of that

Articles, Sermons, web-sites and thoughts from other people I’ve read through out the week. To help edify you in your walk with Christ. Each of us is to please his neighbor for his good, to his edification. Romans 15:2

The Prayer of the Arminian by C.H. Spurgeon… Any one who believes that man’s will is entirely free, and that he can be saved by it, does not believe the fall…Read the rest Here

Combating Charismatic Theology by Phil Johnson… We could have seminars like this everyday for a year and still not cover it all–we would still have more to talk about. So this one session cannot possibly begin to cover the subject in any kind of thorough detail. I wish I had time even to give you a broad overview of the groups and individuals throughout church history who have claimed to exercise miraculous gifts, that in and of itself would be instructive because for the most part what you discover is they’re all kooks, and cranks, and spiritual eccentrics…Read the rest Here

Keeping on the same topic… What should you believe about the Gifts and are they for today… 13 MP3 messages you can download to learn for yourself. Charismatic Chaos By John MacArthur…Download, listen or read Here

Coming to a Doctor’s Office Near You? The New Abortion Strategy By Albert Mohler… The tragedy of abortion remains one of this nation’s greatest reasons for shame, and the fact that over a million abortions are performed each year is nothing less than horrifying… Read the rest Here

DIVORCE By Marty… It’s a simple enough word but the meaning, implications and consequences of this word are enormous. I would be willing to bet that everyone reading this article, at the very least, knows someone who is divorced or is going through divorce. Read the rest Here

The Beauty of Jesus Christ – Paul Washer

The Beauty of Jesus Christ – Paul Washer from I’ll Be Honest on Vimeo.

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Handel’s Messiah

bencropThis is a brief history on how Handel composed the Messiah, I thought it was very interesting…

In a small London house on Brook Street, a servant sighs with resignation as he arranges a tray full of food he assumes will not be eaten. For more than a week, he has faithfully continued to wait on his employer, an eccentric composer, who spends hour after hour isolated in his room.

Morning, noon, and evening the servant delivers appealing meals to the composer and returns later to find the bowls and platters largely untouched.

Once again, he steels himself to go through the same routine, muttering under his breath about how oddly temperamental musicians can be. As he swings open the door to the composer’s room, the servant stops in his tracks.

The startled composer, tears streaming down his face, turns to his servant and cries out, “I did think I did see all Heaven before me, and the great God Himself.” George Frederic Handel had just finished writing a movement that would take its place in history as the Hallelujah Chorus.

George Frederic was born in 1685, a contemporary of Bach, a fellow German, and raised a fellow Lutheran, yet they were never to meet. When the boys were eight or nine years old, a duke heard [Handel] play an organ postlude following a worship service. Handel’s father was summarily requested to provide formal music training for the boy. Handel became a violinist and composer for Hamburg Opera Theater, and then traveled to Italy, where he lived from 1706 to 1710 under the patronage of the music-loving courts.

Audiences for Handel’s compositions were unpredictable, and even the Church of England attacked him for what they considered his notorious practice of writing biblical dramas such as Ether and Israel in Egypt to be performed in secular theaters. His occasional commercial success soon met with financial disaster as rival opera companies competed for the ticket holders of London. He drove himself relentlessly to recover from one failure after another, and finally his health began to fail. By 1741 he was swimming in debt. It seemed certain he would land in debtor’s prison.

On April 8 of that year, he gave what he considered his farewell concert. Miserably discouraged, he felt forced to retire from public activities at the age of fifty-six. Then two unforeseen events converged to change his life. A wealthy friend, Charles Jensen, gave Handel a libretto based on the life of Christ, taken entirely from the Bible. He also received a commission from a Dublin charity to compose a work for a benefit performance.

Handel set to work composing on August 22 in his little house on Brook Street in London. He grew so absorbed in the work that he rarely left his room, hardly stopping to eat. Within six days part one was complete. In nine days more he had finished part two, and in another six, part three. The orchestration was completed in another two days. In all 260 pages of manuscript were filled in the remarkable short time of 24 days.

Handel never left his house for those three weeks. A friend who visited him as he composed found him sobbing with intense emotions. Later, as Handel groped for words to describe what he had experienced, he quoted St. Paul saying, “Whether I was in the body or out of my body when I wrote it I know not.” Handel’s title for the commissioned work was simply, Messiah.

Messiah premiered on April 13, 1742 as a charitable benefit, raising 400 pounds and freeing 142 men from debtor’s prison. A year later, Handel staged it in London. Controversy emanating from the Church of England continued to plague Handel, yet the King of England attended the performance. As the first notes of the triumphant Hallelujah Chorus rang out, the king rose. Following the royal protocol, the entire audience stood too, initiating a tradition that has lasted more than two centuries.

Soon after this, Handel’s notoriety began to increase dramatically, and his hard-won popularity remained constant until his death. By the end of his long life, Messiah was firmly established in the standard repertoire. Its influence on the other composers would be extraordinary. When Haydn later heard the Hallelujah Chorus he wept like a child, and exclaimed, “He is the master of us all!”

Handel personally conducted more than thirty performances of Messiah. Many of these concerts were benefits for the Foundling Hospital, of which Handel was a major benefactor. The thousands of pounds that Handel’s performances of Messiah raised for charity led one biographer to note, “Messiah has fed the hungry, clothed the naked, fostered the orphan . . . more than any other single musical production in this or any country.” Another wrote, “Perhaps the works of no other composer have so largely contributed to the relief of human suffering.”

This work has had an uncanny spiritual impact on the lives of its listeners. One writer has stated that Messiah’s music and message “has probably done more to convince thousands of mankind that there is a God about us than all the theological works ever written.”

A few days before Handel died, he expressed his desire to die on Good Friday, “in the hopes of meeting his good God, his sweet Lord and Savior, on the day of his Resurrection.” He lived until the morning of Good Saturday, April 14, 1759. His death came only eight days after his final performance, at which he had conducted his masterpiece, Messiah.


Handel – Messiah – Hallelujah Chorus


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Let It Rain

Finally some badly needed rain

Job 37:6 “For to the snow He says, ‘Fall on the earth,’And to the downpour and the rain, ‘Be strong.’

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