Monthly Archives: July 2011

A little of this and a little of that

BoldnessWhere have you gone? “One of the special marks of the Holy Ghost in the Apostolic Church was the spirit of boldness” A.B. Simpson and then this from John MacArthur “The Greek word translated “bold” is tolmao, which means “to be courageous, daring, dauntless.” It speaks of acting without fear of the consequences.”

I agree with Justin Taylor… If You Can Only Read One of John Stott’s Books… When a significant figure dies, for whatever reasons, his or her book sales often see an immediate spike. Some readers of this blog may feel that way, having come of age and come to Christ after John Stott had already retired from public ministry and wanting to taste for yourself the fruits of his labors. If you feel that impulse, I’d encourage you to consider Stott’s The Cross of Christ… Read the rest Here

Grow Up Advice for YRRs (part 2) If you missed part 1 Here by John MacArthur… If I could impress on Young, Restless, Reformed students just one word of friendly counsel to address what I think is the most glaring deficiency in that movement, this is what it would be: “Brothers, do not be children in your thinking. Be infants in evil, but in your thinking be mature” (1 Corinthians 14:20)… Read the rest Here

Behold, now is “the day of salvation” If you might be putting off Salvation… Saying I’ll come to Christ when I’m ready or if you Christian, are waiting to share the gospel of Jesus Christ… These verses are for you! Just hover over them. Proverbs 27:1   Luke 12:19 and 20    James 4:14     2 Corinthians 6:2

A Prayer for Worshiping God Just Because He’s God By Scooty Smith… Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego replied to him, “King Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. If we are thrown into the blazing furnace, the God we serve is able to deliver us from it, and he will deliver us from Your Majesty’s hand. But even if he does not, we want you to know, Your Majesty, that we will not serve your gods or worship the image of gold you have set up.” Dan. 3:16–18… Heavenly Father, I’m intrigued, convicted, and encouraged by the faith of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. Read the rest Here

Five kinds of wrath, when the word is used of God.

  • 1. Sowing and reaping wrath (Lam. 2:2, 4).
  • 2. Cataclysmic wrath (Ex. 15:7).
  • 3. Abandonment wrath (Rom. 1:18, 24, 26, 28).
  • 4. Eschatological wrath (Rev. 6:16-17).
  • 5. Eternal wrath (Rom. 2:5-11).

Context determines the exact meaning of “wrath” in a specific biblical text. (From Richard Mayhue First and Second Thessalonians, Focus,)

Jerusalem Filmed in Imax 3D

Jerusalem | Filmed in Imax 3D from JerusalemGiantScreen on Vimeo.

Finally the story of my life… At least up to this point for the glory of God.

 

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John Stott “Preach The Cross”

In Memory of John Stott (1921-2011)

This quote comes from his book The Cross of Christ.

To ‘preach the cross’ . . . is to preach salvation by God’s grace alone. Such a message is a stumbling-block (1 Cor. 1:23) because it is grievously offensive to human pride; it therefore exposes us to persecution. There are, of course, no Judaizers in the world today, preaching the necessity of circumcision. But there are plenty of false teachers, inside as well as outside the church, who preach the false gospel (which is not a gospel, Galatians 1:7) of salvation by good works. To preach salvation by good works is to flatter people and so avoid opposition. This may seem to some to pose the alternative too starkly. But I do not think so. All Christian preachers have to face this issue. Either we preach that human beings are rebels against God, under his just judgment and (if left to themselves) lost, and that Christ crucified who bore their sin and curse is the only available Saviour. Or we emphasize human potential and human ability, with Christ brought in only to boost them, and with no necessity for the cross except to exhibit God’s love and so inspire us to greater endeavour.

The former is the way to be faithful, the latter the way to be popular. It is not possible to be faithful and popular simultaneously. We need to hear again the warning of Jesus: ‘Woe to you when all men speak well of you’ (Lk. 6:26). By contrast, if we preach the cross, we may find that we are ourselves hounded to the cross. (John Stott, The Cross of Christ pg. 347-348.)

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God’s Poetic Justice

Romans 1:24 Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them.

This verse makes a strange statement, but if we note the pattern of God’s judgment in sacred Scripture, we see that a form of poetic justice tends to emerge in God’s punitive measures. By poetic justice I mean that God’s punishment is perfectly matched to the sin. In other words, there is a kind of identity between the particular type of sin and the particular type of punishment. Let me explain.

The sin referred to in this verse is that of dishonoring God. The resulting punishment is that men and women are given over to their own evil desires. It isn’t as if God visits evil upon them out of nowhere; instead, he gives them over to their own lusts and to their desires and inclinations to dishonor him. In effect God says, “All right. You refuse to honor me; you don’t want to honor me; then you don’t have to honor me. I’ll let you do what you want to do. And I’ll let your evil desires run their course.” God allows their evil to go unchecked to its natural outcome. The effect is dreadful. Those who are given over by God to their sinful nature will find that their bodies are dishonored and degraded among themselves. In our age there is a crisis of human dignity, a crisis of honoring one another. But when the honor of God is ignored, it is virtually inevitable that humankind will slide headlong into degradation and dishonor. When God’s honor is exalted and his majesty worshiped, then human dignity is elevated. Conversely, wherever the dignity of God is attacked, sooner or later the dignity of humanity suffers.

Since human beings are created in the image of God there is a very real sense in which, as God goes, so goes the image-bearer. If we corrupt and denigrate the living God who is our Creator, then the image of himself, which he has made, suffers accordingly. (R. C, Spruol Before the face of God The effect is dreadful. Those who are given over by God to their sinful nature will find that their bodies are dishonored and degraded among themselves. In our age there is a crisis of human dignity, a crisis of honoring one another. But when the honor of God is ignored, it is virtually inevitable that humankind will slide headlong into degradation and dishonor. When God’s honor is exalted and his majesty worshiped, then human dignity is elevated. Conversely, wherever the dignity of God is attacked, sooner or later the dignity of humanity suffers. Since human beings are created in the image of God there is a very real sense in which, as God goes, so goes the image-bearer. If we corrupt and denigrate the living God who is our Creator, then the image of himself, which he has made, suffers accordingly. (R. C, Sproul, Before the face of God. vol 1 )

Galatians 6:7-8 Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.

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Worldliness

John 15:18,19 “If the world hates you, you know that it has hated Me before it hated you. “If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you.

The church today is suffering from the secularization of the sacred. By accepting the world’s values, thinking its thoughts and adopting its ways we have dimmed the glory that shines overhead. We have not been able to bring earth to the judgment of heaven so we have brought heaven to the judgment of the earth. Pity us, Lord, for we know not what we do! He goes on to say Tolerance, charity, understanding, good will, patience and other such words and ideas are lifted from the Bible, misunderstood and applied indiscriminately to every situation. The kidnapper will not steal your baby if you only try to understand him; the burglar caught sneaking into your house with a gun is not really bad; he is just hungry for fellowship and togetherness; the gang killer taking his victim for a one-way ride can be dissuaded from committing murder if someone will only have faith in his basic goodness and have a talk with him. And this is supposed to be the teaching of Jesus, which it most certainly is not. This yen to confer has hit the church also, which is not strange since almost everything the church is doing these days has been suggested to her by the world.(From Tozer’s Man: The Dwelling Place of God)

James 4:4 You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.

1 John 2:15  Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

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What I Learned In Church This Week

I learned so much in Church this past week, that I really don’t know where to begin. I do know this… That the Romans bible study that we’re doing in Sunday School has been one of greatest bible study’s that I have ever been a part of, second only to the gospel of Mark. This study never ceases to amaze me, the level of learning and the depth of our study has been really high lately… The dedication and desire to learn and grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ 2 Peter 3:18 has been the center of those attending. I can’t wait for it to come next week… I can’t wait to study and learn this week and prepare a lesson… I can’t wait to glorify Jesus Christ and His Word and make Him preeminence in our study and life.

This past week didn’t come without any challenges, the one that came to the forefront of our study Sunday was God given people over to their Sin in Romans 1:24, 26 and 28 not only that! God not only gives people over to their sin (Wrath of Abandonment)… How about a nation? Three times in Romans 1:24-28 we read that God gave them over. I guess the question is what does that mean? Does it mean that God removes His common grace and Holy Spirit on men to sin to the utmost? And does He do the same to a nation, like America. God has always been patient… But I think there is a time that seems to run out.

Look at Genesis 6:3 It says this Then the Lord said, “My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, because he also is flesh; nevertheless his days shall be one hundred and twenty years.” Just like the flood came 120 years later with judgement, I believe you see in Romans 1 God’s patience running out and the wrath of abandonment Romans 1:18 coming in… You see it in Romans 1:24, 26 and 28… When people and a nation see God in all His glory and spender and fail to acknowledge Him and continue to reject Him… The ultimately response is judgment (the wrath of abandonment). And I see it happening to American.

Take a look what God has given them over to

  1. over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity Romans 1:24
  2. over to degrading passions Romans 1:26
  3. over to a depraved mind Romans 1:28

This is seen in both people and in nations. America has decline so much that God has given over this nation to its lusts, its passions and its depravity. we only need to watch the nightly news or read the paper… We have recently seen it happen up close in our little community with the murder of a 6-year-old… That is why we don’t need to coincide with the world… We don’t need methods and tricks… We don’t need fun or felt needs. We need to hear a word from God… We need the Gospel without all this junk that comes with it. We need the Holy Spirit of God to move on this Nation and in our cities and communities… We need revival… We need prayer… We need people not ashamed of the Gospel for it’s the power of God for salvation Romans 1:16. God alone saves and He is America and the worlds only hope.

We need to be faithful to God’s word, regardless if we’re successful and I believe this all starts in the Church where BELIEVERS come to worship in sprint and truth and to be edified, built of in God’s word, to have fellowship and prayer and partake in the Lord’s Supper Acts 2:42 They were continually devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Acts 2:44 And all those who had believed were together and had all things in common; Then here comes the sovereignty of God in salvation Acts 2:47 praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved.

Listen, Believers gather to be edified and built up in Christ and His word, then we scatter to evangelize and God does the rest, the Lord was adding to their number day by day, again we’re not called to be successful but faithful to God and His word. Peter said we are aliens and strangers just passing through. our home is in heaven… Our citizenship is not of this world so our customs and ways should not to be of this world. 1 Peter 2:11-12 We have to live in this world, but not be of this world James 4:4, 1 John 2:15, John 15:18-19 and in Romans 12:1-2 says not to be conformed to this world… But be transformed by the renewing of your mind… THE WORD OF GOD ! To Him be the glory… Amen

That is what I learned in church this week

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MacArthur Monday

The Kind of Worship God Desires Parts 1, 2 and 3

“There are two things that kill worship. One is man-centeredness and the other is pragmatism. Both of those have come to dominate what is called evangelicalism.”

That is Dr. MacArthur’s opening statement in part 1 of  The Kind of Worship God Desires… Along with Part 2 and 3



“So the crucial factor in worship in the church is not the form of worship, but the state of the hearts of the saints. If our corporate worship isn’t the expression of our individual worshiping lives, it is unacceptable. If you think you can live anyway you want and then go to church on Sunday morning and turn on worship with the saints, you’re wrong.” John MacArthur The Ultimate Priority

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A little of this and a little of that

Before I get started with A little of this and a little of that, I wanted to take care of some scheduling business… One of the more popular weekly posts I have is What I Learned In Church Yesterday, starting this week it will come on Tuesdays, and not it’s normal Mondays… I will call it What I Learned In Church This Week, so that leaves Mondays… I usually post something from John MacArthur once a week, that will now come on Mondays and I’ll call it MacArthur Mondays. This will give me more time to write about what I learned in church this week, there are many weeks I feel rushed, so this should fix that, I hope! Now back to this and that.

Our first stop this Saturday morning comes at a perfect time for me… So here we go!

Are You “Contextualizing”? Or Are You Just Being Worldly?… A Word on Worldliness… A Classic Dose of Spurgeon, reposted. This was one of our first-ever doses o’ Spurgeon. It’s still great. from PyroManiacs

“The glory of the gospel is that when the church is absolutely different from the world, she invariably attracts it.” Martyn Lloyd-Jones

Here is a very good review of the new biography of John MacArthur, Servant of the Word and Flock, by Iain H. Murray from Reformation 21 HT: Phil Johnson

You have magnified Your Word… from Yours truly… I really love this Psalm for many reason… Verse 1 David praises God for answered prayer and His lovingkindness and His truth… Already His Word is being exalted,  then look at verse 2. Read the rest Here

Grow Up. Settle Down. Keep Reforming. Advice for the Young, Restless, Reformed by John MacArthur… It has been five years since Christianity Today published Collin Hansen’s article titled “Young, Restless, Reformed.” Hansen later expanded the article into a book with the same title (Wheaton: Crossway, 2008). He has carefully documented a very encouraging trend: large numbers of young people (college age and younger) are discovering the doctrines of grace, embracing a more biblical and Christ-centered worldview, and beginning to delve more deeply into serious theology than most 20th-century evangelicals were prone to do. Read the Here

Chosen By God A Teaching Series by Dr. R.C. Sproul Starting with lecture 1… Scripture very plainly uses the word “predestined” in reference to the salvation of God’s people. Most denominations and some of the greatest theologians have wrestled with this issue through the centuries and have carefully formulated statements regarding this controversial topic. What do you believe about predestination? Watch the whole series for free Here

“We have come to a place in time where we measure the correctness of our plans simply by their seeming to contribute to our favorite aim. We estimate the soundness of our doctrine, not from its tendency to exalt and glorify God…but entirely by the apparent facility with which it enables us to get sinners to turn from their ways.” Horatius Bonar

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Haydn, The Creation – The Heavens are Telling

As I was running earlier this morning, I was reminded of the beauty of earth and the Creator who made it.  This piece by Haydn is part of his Creation oratorio, which he wrote in both German and English.  Here is the English version of this great piece.

Chorus
The heavens are telling the glory of God;
with wonders of his work resounds the firmament.

Gabriel, Uriel, Raphael
Revealed are his ways by day unto day,
by night that is gone to followign night.

Chorus
The heavens are telling the glory of God;
with wonders of his work resounds the firmament.

Gabriel, Uriel, Raphael
In every land abounds the word.
Every ear will hearken; never tongue be dumb

Chorus
The heavens are telling the glory of God;
with wonders of his work resounds the firmament.

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You have magnified Your Word

I really love this Psalm for many reason… Verse 1 David praises God for answered prayer and His lovingkindness and His truth… Already His Word is being exalted,  then look at verse 2 For You have magnified Your word according to all Your name. This verse of course could mean the Incarnate Word our Lord Jesus Christ and/or His revelation the written Word (most likely His Word). The Lord Jesus Christ and the Word they are inseparable, they are magnified above Himself. Going through Romans, we know God has made Himself known through His creation, but most clearly through His Word. Look at verse 3 God is so very faithful… He heard David’s cry and  strengthened him spiritually with boldness.

That has always been my prayer, that God would use His word to strengthened me spiritually with boldness to proclaim His word with clarity and with authority without being ashamed before God 2 Timothy 2:15 I love this Psalm, Why preachers and teachers think they have to bring in all theses other ways and methods is beyond me, just exalt His Word, just magnify His Word… Paul said PREACH THE WORD 2 Timothy 4:2 preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction. Why? For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Hebrews 4:12 Hopefully we will look at the rest of Psalm 138 in the near future.

Psalm 138 (NASB)
Thanksgiving for the Lord’s Favor.

1 I will give You thanks with all my heart;
I will sing praises to You before the gods.

2 I will bow down toward Your holy temple
And give thanks to Your name for Your lovingkindness and Your truth;
For You have magnified Your word according to all Your name.

3 On the day I called, You answered me;
You made me bold with strength in my soul.

4 All the kings of the earth will give thanks to You, O Lord,
When they have heard the words of Your mouth.

5 And they will sing of the ways of the Lord,
For great is the glory of the Lord.

6 For though the Lord is exalted,
Yet He regards the lowly,
But the haughty He knows from afar.

7 Though I walk in the midst of trouble, You will revive me;
You will stretch forth Your hand against the wrath of my enemies,
And Your right hand will save me.

8 The Lord will accomplish what concerns me;
Your lovingkindness, O Lord, is everlasting;
Do not forsake the works of Your hands.

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Overcoming the world!

“Everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world.” 1 John 5:4

Our three great spiritual enemies are . . . the world, the flesh, and the devil, It is hard to say which does most harm to the soul. The last day alone will settle that point. But I venture boldly to say, that at no former period has “the world” been so dangerous, and so successful in injuring Christ’s Church, as it is just now. Every age is said to have its own peculiar epidemic disease. I suspect that “worldliness” is the peculiar plague of Christendom in our own era. The subtle influence of the world, nowadays, seems to infect the very air we breathe! It creeps into families and leads myriads captive, who never know that they are slaves! The enormous increase of English wealth, and consequent power of self indulgence, and the immense growth of a passionate relish for recreations and amusements of all kinds–all these strange phenomena of our age give the world an amazing additional power, and make it doubly needful for Christ’s ministers to cry aloud, “Beware of the world!”

In the face of this aggravated danger, we must never forget that the Word of the living God does not change!

“Do not love the world!”

“Do not be conformed to this world!”

“Friendship with the world is enmity with God!”

These mighty sayings of God’s statute-book remain still unrepealed. The true Christian strives daily to obey them, and proves the vitality of his religion by his obedience. It is as true now as it was eighteen hundred years ago, that the man “born of God” will be a man who, more or less, resists and overcomes the world. Though “in” the world, he is not “of” the world. He uses it, but does not abuse it. He is not wholly absorbed either in the business or the pleasures of life–as if they were the sum total of existence. Even in innocent things he keeps the rein on his tastes and inclinations, and does not let them run away with him. He does not live as if life was made up of recreation, or money-getting, or politics, or scientific pursuits–and as if there were no life to come! He can neither be bribed, nor frightened, nor allured into neglecting his soul.

To be at peace with the world is to be at enmity with God, and in the broad way that leads to destruction! We have no choice or option. We must fight or be lost. We must conquer or die eternally. “Everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world.” 1 John 5:4 I charge and entreat all who are inclined to make peace with the world, to awake to a sense of their danger! Awake and cast aside the chains which indolence, or love of popularity, are gradually weaving round you! Awake before it is too late –before repeated worldly acts have formed habits–and habits have crystallized into character–and you have become a helpless slave!

The “fetters of the world” are often invisible. We are dragged downward insensibly, and are like one who sleeps in a boat, and knows not that he is drifting, gently drifting, towards the falls. There is no slavery so bad as that which is unfelt. There are no chains so really heavy as those which are unseen. If you love your souls, hold the world at arm’s length.

“Everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world.” 1 John 5:4 (J. C. Ryle, “Victory!”) HT: Grace Gems

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