We turn to hear the expositions on the subject of our Pedobaptist brethren

Thus is the salvation of infants fully, and satisfactorily established. Wherever in the wide world, and whenever, any child dies in infancy, it enters immediately into the joys of eternal life in heaven. It thenceforth dwells forever with the Redeemer. How full of the richest consolation is this glorious truth! In no form more delightful, has Jehovah manifested to us his abundant mercy, and grace. “Thanks be to God for his unspeakable gift.”

With all these facts before us, we turn to hear the expositions on the subject of our Pedobaptist brethren. We are immeasurably pained to find them in utter confusion! Their best conceptions of this subject are entirely inadequate, and unworthy. All their teachings tend evidently to subvert the true scripture doctrine of infant salvation. Most of them claim that infants must be brought into the church, since out of it there is no deliverance; and all of them insist that the merits of Christ’s atonement and the sanctification of the Holy Spirit, without which no one can be saved, are communicated to them through baptism. Thus they make the salvation of infants dependent upon conditions, and such conditions as no child can control, but must be performed by parents, friends, and ministers! Infant baptism and infant salvation are, therefore, always found more or less intimately associated in the minds of all classes of pedobaptists. These, I know, are grave charges, but the testimony is at hand by which they are amply sustained. Before I offer this testimony, however, I will refer to a singular imputation against Baptists, and properly account for its existence. You have many a time, doubtless, heard the declaration that “Baptists believe in the damnation of infants” Some persons with whom you have met, have perhaps told you to your face that they have themselves heard Baptist people, and Baptist ministers, avow the sentiment. Pedobaptists of all classes, repeat everywhere the charge, and declare with indignant eloquence, that “Baptists hold the damnation of infants!” If, as I have professed to do in this chapter, I have properly represented Baptist sentiment on the subject, how could such an accusation against us ever have originated? And when produced and put into circulation, how could it have been kept up for so many ages? The answers are easy. Pedobaptists believe that the baptism of infants is necessary to their salvation. According to their doctrines, therefore, if they are not baptized they must be damned. Baptists refuse to baptize infants. Pedobaptists instantly proclaim, as a consequence of their own principles, without waiting to hear our opinions on the question of their salvation, that therefore “Baptists hold the damnation of infants!” Nor will they give it up. To this day they insist that it must be so. Since we do not baptize infants, we surely believe that if they die in infancy they are damned! One example will probably be sufficient to establish and illustrate the correctness of this account of the origin of the charge. Archbishop Cranmer, in one of his discourses, speaks of the Baptists in the following language:

Children, of necessity, must be christened, or else they cannot be purged of their sins, nor yet saved by Christ, and come to life everlasting. Wherefore the Anabaptists that would not have children to be christened, they show themselves that they would not have children to be purged from their sins, and be saved. If they would have children saved, they would not deny them the means whereby Christ purgeth his church from sins, and saveth it, which is baptism.[119]”

R. B. C. Howell- The Evils of Infant Baptism- Chapter 9- Infant baptism is an evil because it subverts the true doctrine of infant salvation

Faith is a connection with Christ

Let me tell you a story to illustrate this: the stupendous falls of Niagara have been spoken of in every part of the world; but while they are marvelous to hear of, and wonderful as a spectacle, they have been very destructive to human life, when by accident any have been carried down the cataract. Some years ago, two men, a bargeman and a collier, were in a boat, and found themselves unable to manage it, it being carried so swiftly down the current that they must both inevitably be borne down and dashed to pieces. Persons on the shore saw them, but were unable to do much for their rescue. At last, however, one man was saved by floating a rope to him, which he grasped. The same instant that the rope came into his hand a log floated by the other man. The thoughtless and confused bargeman, instead of seizing the rope, laid hold on the log. It was a fatal mistake: they were both in imminent peril, but the one was drawn to shore because he had a connection with the people on the land, whilst the other, clinging to the log, was borne irresistibly along, and never heard of afterwards. Do you not see that here is a practical illustration? Faith is a connection with Christ. Christ is on the shore, so to speak, holding the rope of faith, and if we lay hold of it with the hand of our confidence, he pulls us to shore; but our good works having no connection with Christ, are drifted along down the gulf of fell despair. Grapple them as tightly as we may, even with hooks of steel, they cannot avail us in the least degree.

Charles H. Spurgeon- Words of Wisdom for Daily Life- Article ‘Good Works and Broken Keys’

The Wednesday Word: Full Assurance of Faith: Part 2

We cannot possibly come to a place of personal assurance of salvation if we don’t believe the Bible to be the Word of God.

Consider what the Bible says about itself. We read,

“Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of my heart” (Jeremiah 15:16).

Then in Psalm 119: 7-10, “The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.

The statutes of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.

The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether.

And again, “Thy testimonies have I taken as a heritage for ever: for they are the rejoicing of my heart” (Psalm 119:111).

Jesus taught, “Man shall not live by bread alone but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God” (Luke 4:4).

Then in 2 Timothy 3:16, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:”

And Jesus declared, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, he that hears my word, and believes on Him that sent me, has everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life” (John 5:24). Do you believe that?

The Bible assures us that,

He has purged our sins (Hebrews 1:3).

He has removed our sins as far as the east is from the west (Psalm 103:12).

He has blotted out our sins (Isaiah 44:22).

He has cast our sins behind His back (Isaiah 38:17).

He has cast them into the depth of the sea (Micah 7:19).

He takes our sins away (1 John 3:5).

He has washed our sins away (Revelation1:5).

He has cleansed us from our sins (1 John 1:7).

He has forgiven us our sins (Romans 4:7; Ephesians 1:7).

He has forgotten our sins (Hebrews 10:17).

Is He a liar?

No!

Then believe Him.

Trust Him.

Christ’s work for us makes us safe, and God’s word about us makes us sure. Assurance, therefore, is not to be had by looking inside ourselves for some religious experience or other. No indeed, assurance comes by what the Lord has said.

Suppose, for example, that a man has been charged with a certain crime. If found guilty, he will face a hefty prison sentence. Much to his relief, the court finds him not guilty and acquits him of all charges. How would he be assured that he had been cleared by the Judge and jury. How would he know for certain that that he was not going to prison?

Would it be by looking to his feelings?

Or would it be by listening to hearsay?

Or speculation?

Or would the ‘not guilty’ status be his because the judge had declared him so? Obviously, this is what he would hold on to.

Similarly, if we want to be certain of the fact that we have been saved, our feelings, wishes, speculations and what people might think about us is not the evidence that we need to give us peace. Those sources don’t have the authority to pronounce on the matter. We must go to the Word of God and see what “God the Judge of all” says about it (Psalm 50:6). We can put our fullest confidence in His Word for He cannot lie, and that will be what we will need for solid assurance of our salvation. (see Romans 8:29-30; Acts 13:39; Ephesians 2:8-9; 1 John 3:5).

Listen again to John 5:24, “Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that hears My Word, and believes on Him that sent Me, has everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation; but is passed from death unto life.”

As we’ve written many times,

Jesus said it,

That settles it:

I believed it,

That settled me!

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com   

Categories: Gospel Tags: , , ,

That when the devil and wicked men have done what they could; they have yet had their souls at their own dispose

Conclusion Fourth, Another thing that followeth from the words is this; namely, That when the devil and wicked men have done what they could, in their persecuting of the godly; they have yet had their souls at their own dispose.[11] They have not been able to rob them of their souls, they are not able to hurt their souls. The soul is not in their power to touch, without the leave of God, and of him whose soul it is. “And fear not them,” saith Christ, “which kill the body, but are not able to kill the soul” (Matt 10:28). This, I say, lies clear also in the text; for the exhortation supposes, that whatever the sufferers, there made mention of, had lost, they had yet their souls at their own dispose. Let them that suffer, even to the loss of goods, liberty, or life, “commit the keeping of their souls to God.” As, who should say, though the enemy hath reached them to their all, and stripped them of their all, yet I know, that their soul is not among that all: For their soul is yet free from them, at liberty, and may be disposed of, even as the sufferer will. Wherefore, let him commit the keeping of his soul to God, lest he also through his negligence or carelessness be also spoiled of that. The sufferer, therefore, hath his soul at his own dispose, he may give that away to God Almighty, in spite of all that the devil and the world can do. He may, indeed, see men parting his land, his household stuff, yea, his very raiment among themselves, but they cannot so dispose of his soul.[12] They “have no more that they can do” (Luke 12:4).

John Bunyan- Seasonable Counsel or Advise to Sufferers

[11.] “Dispose”; power, disposal. “All that is mine, I leave at thy dispose.”-Shake-speare.-Ed.

[12.] In Ireland, whole provinces were desolated, both by Protestants and Papists, with a ferocity scarcely credible. In England, the state awfully tormented its pious Christian subjects, to whom their Lord’s words must have been peculiarly consoling: “Fear not them which kill the body.” Did they suffer? How holy were their enjoyments!-Ed.

There was a specific place where God was to be worshiped

PinkAs I pointed out many years ago in my Gleanings in Genesis, the contents of Genesis 4, though exceedingly terse, intimate that from the time of Adam onward, there was a specific place where God was to be worshiped. When we are told in verses 3 and 4 that Cain and Abel “brought an offering unto the Lord,” the implication is clear that they came to some particular location of His appointing. When we read that Abel brought “the firstling of his flock and the fat thereof,” we cannot escape the conclusion that there was an altar where the victim must be offered and upon which its fat must be burned. These necessary inferences receive clear corroboration in the words of verse 16, “And Cain went out from the presence of the Lord,” which can hardly mean less than that he was formally prohibited from the place where the presence of Jehovah was symbolically manifest. That place of worship appears to have been located at the east of the Garden of Eden.

Arthur W. Pink- The Divine Covenants-Part Three-The Noahic Covenant

The Counsel

Spurgeon 1III. The third point is THE COUNSEL. I have been expounding the text, now I want to enforce it. I would, if my Lord would allow me, speak home to your souls, and so picture the danger of a presumptuous man, that I would make you all cry out to heaven that sooner might you die than presume; that sooner might you be found amongst those who lie prostrate at the foot of Christ, trembling all their lives, than amongst those who think they stand, and therefore fall. Christian men, the counsel of Scripture is- Take heed.”

Charles H. Spurgeon- A Caution to the Presumptous, A Sermon Delivered on Sabbath Morning, at Exerter Hall Strand, May 13, 1855

We have now seen that all children who die in infancy, are saved by the grace of God

We have now seen that all children who die in infancy, are saved by the grace of God; that they are saved through the redemption of Jesus Christ; that this redemption is applied to them personally, and directly, by the Holy Ghost; and that we have many instances of their salvation recorded in God’s word; it remains only to be proved that their salvation is unconditional.

They are involved, it is true, on account of their connection with Adam, in the consequences of his fall. But provision has been made for their unconditional deliverance, in the satisfaction of the second Adam. One among the clearest demonstrations of this truth is presented to us in connection with the doctrine of their resurrection in the last day. “Since by man came death,” says Paul, “by man came also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die; even so in Christ, shall all be made alive” (1 Corinthians 15:21, 22.) — raised from the dead. (pa>ntev zwopoihqhsontai) It is true, then, that in the resurrection of the body, all will be raised. The righteous and the wicked, the Christian and the idolater, the adult and the infant, will alike participate in that glorious event. Here there is no condition but that of humanity. Those who live to the age of personal responsibility, are saved only upon the conditions of repentance, and faith. The wisdom of this provision no one can fail to perceive. They have a conscious being, a personal accountability. Yet it is not for their repentance, and faith; nor by their repentance, and faith, as a procuring cause, that even they are saved. They, too, obtain salvation by the grace of God in Jesus Christ:

For by grace are ye saved, through faith, and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast.” (Ephesians 2:8, 9.) But repentance and faith are acts of a mind enlightened, and comparatively mature. They are not demanded of infants. Infants are saved unconditionally.

Thus is the salvation of infants fully, and satisfactorily established. Wherever in the wide world, and whenever, any child dies in infancy, it enters immediately into the joys of eternal life in heaven. It thenceforth dwells forever with the Redeemer. How full of the richest consolation is this glorious truth! In no form more delightful, has Jehovah manifested to us his abundant mercy, and grace. “Thanks be to God for his unspeakable gift.”

R. B. C. Howell- The Evils of Infant Baptism- Chapter 9- Infant baptism is an evil because it subverts the true doctrine of infant salvation

Without faith it is impossible to be saved

Without faith it is impossible to be saved, and to please God, because without faith there is no union to Christ. Now, union to Christ is indispensable to our salvation. If I come before God’s throne with my prayers, I shall never get them answered, unless I bring Christ with me. The Molossians of old, when they could not get a favor from their king, adopted a singular expedient; they took the king’s only son in their arms, and falling on their knees, cried, “O king, for thy son’s sake, grant our request.” He smiled and said: “I deny nothing to those who plead in my son’s name.” It is so with God. He will deny nothing to the man who comes, having Christ at his elbow; but if he comes alone he must be cast away. Union to Christ is, after all, the great point in salvation.

Charles H. Spurgeon- Words of Wisdom for Daily Life- Article ‘Good Works and Broken Keys’

The Wednesday Word: Full Assurance of Faith

The Greek word `Plerophoria‘, (translated ‘full assurance’) occurs 4 times in the New Testament. First, we have the “full assurance of understanding” Colossians 2: 2. Then in 1Thessalonians 1:5 we have ‘full assurance of the gospel;’ then the ‘full assurance of hope’ (Hebrews 6:11); and finally, the full assurance of faith (Hebrews 10:22). Let’s consider, for a few moments, the last one, “Full Assurance of Faith.”

Notice that we have the full assurance of faith, not the full assurance of feelings!

Have you ever said to yourself, “If I could only feel saved, then I would have assurance?” But such thinking is entirely and utterly wrong.

For instance, if I said that I could not believe you until I felt that what you said was true, I would be saying, your word is not enough for me. I need your word plus my feelings. If that is the way it is, I might as well call you a liar to your face. Yes indeed! It is quite inappropriate for me to believe that you are not telling the truth, whatever my feelings may be. How much more then is God to be believed?

The Almighty speaks in His Word and we believe Him. God does not lie (Numbers 23:19). What a beautiful, comforting truth that is. In the light of that truth, listen to what the Master says, “Truly, truly, I say unto you, He that believes on me has everlasting life” (John 6: 47). He is not lying! He’s telling us the truth! We don’t need to feel that He is telling the truth. No! We, regardless of feelings, believe God’s word.

If we lack assurance of salvation, we should tell ourselves John 6:47 (and other verses like it), over and over again. We should reckon on every syllable of it being true and enjoy the “full assurance” it gives. At the beginning and end of the day, and in the middle, we could meditate on each part and weigh each statement, until we believe what is written! Everlasting life is ours.

There is no condemnation for us in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1)!

“Brother Miles, on whose authority do you say that?”

On the Master’s authority! He speaks, we believe, and are informed of what is ours.

‘God said it, that settles it.

I Believed it. That settled me!’

I believe in my doctor when I put my case into his hands and trust him to cure me. I believe my lawyer and I leave my case in their hands. I believe in my bank when I put money into their hands and allow them to keep it on my behalf.

If I can trust my doctor, my lawyer and my banker who are but mere mortals then I can believe the God/Man, the Lord Jesus Christ. When I take Christ to be my Saviour, and put my case into His hands, I trust Him to do what I cannot do for myself … save me from my sin.

There is an old story told of a Scottish preacher whose friend came to him in spiritual perplexity. “Tell me,” the friend inquired, “How do you know that you have always got a hold of God?” For a long minute the minister was silent, and then, with a great wistfulness in his eyes, said: “How do I know that I have always got hold of God? I don’t always know; but I do know His word tells me, He always has a hold of me!”

And that’s the Gospel Truth!

Miles Mckee

www.milesmckee.com   

That persecution doth, sometimes, so hotly follow God’s people, as to leave them nothing but a soul to care for

Conclusion Third, Another conclusion that followeth upon this exhortation, is this: That persecution doth, sometimes, so hotly follow God’s people, as to leave them nothing but a soul to care for. They have had no house, no land, no money, no goods, no life, no liberty, left them to care for. ALL IS GONE BUT THE SOUL. Goods have been confiscated, liberty has been in irons, the life condemn-ed, the neck in a halter, or the body in the fire. So then all, to such, has been gone, and they have had nothing left them to care for, but their soul. “Let them commit the keeping of their soul to God.” This conclusion, I say, doth naturally flow from the words. For that the apostle here doth make mention only of the soul, as of that which is left, as of that which yet remains to the sufferer of all that ever he had. Thus they served Christ; they left him nothing but his soul to care for. Thus they served Stephen; they left him nothing but his soul to care for, and they both cared for that, “Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit,” said Jesus (Luke 23:46). And, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit,” said Stephen (Acts 7:59). As for all other things, they were gone. They parted the very clothes of Christ among themselves before his face, even while he did hang pouring out his life before them, upon the tree. “They parted my garments among them,” said he, “and upon my vesture did they cast lots” (Matt 27:35; Mark 15:24; John 19:24). This also has oftentimes been the condition of later Christians, all has been gone, they have been stripped of all, nothing has been left them but “soul” to care for. Job said that he had escaped with the skin of his teeth; and that is but a little: but he doth not escape with so much, that loses all that he has, life and all, we now except the soul. But,

John Bunyan- Seasonable Counsel or Advise to Sufferers