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Archive for June, 2012

No Such Thing as Chance or Luck

To advance a little in the thought of this definition: Once settle your mind on the idea of Providence and there is no such thing as chance, there is no such thing as luck, there is no such thing as fate. That this Providence “is not simply foreseeing but forseeing,” not simply looking ahead beforehand, but looking ahead for, or in order to, the accomplishment of its purposes and desires, “forseeing as well as foreseeing.” An agent is a doer, or actor, not an influence; it is the personal supervision of an individual.

B. H. Carroll—The Providence of God

 

God Never Changes

All creatures change. Man, especially as to his body, is always undergoing revolution. Very probably there is not a single particle in my body which was in it a few years ago. This frame has been worn away by activity, its atoms have been removed by friction, fresh particles of matter have in the mean time constantly accrued to my body, and so it has been replenished- but its substance is altered. The fabric of which this world is made is ever passing away; like a stream of water, drops are running away and others are following after, keeping the river still full, but always changing in its elements. But God is perpetually the same. He is not composed of any substance or material, but is spirit-pure, essential, and ethereal spirit-and therefore he is immutable. He remains everlastingly the same. There are no furrows on his eternal brow. No age hath palsied him- no years have marked him with the mementos of their flight- he sees ages pass, but with him it is ever now. He is the great I Am the Great Unchangeable.

Charles H. Spurgeon-The Immutability of God- A Sermon January 7, 1855

All of Grace—Confirmation

Chapter Seventeen

Confirmation

I WANT YOU TO NOTICE the security which Paul confidently expected for all the saints. He says — “Who shall confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.” This is the kind of confirmation which is above all things to be desired. You see it supposes that the persons are right, and it proposes to confirm them in the right. It would be an awful thing to confirm a man in ways of sin and error. Think of a confirmed drunkard, or a confirmed thief, or a confirmed liar. It would be a deplorable thing for a man to be confirmed in unbelief and ungodliness. Divine confirmation can only be enjoyed by those to whom the grace of God has been already manifested. It is the work of the Holy Ghost. He who gives faith strengthens and establishes it: He who kindles love in us preserves it and increases its flame. What He makes us to know by His first teaching, the good Spirit causes us to know with greater clearness and certainty by still further instruction. Holy acts are confirmed till they become habits, and holy feelings are confirmed till they become abiding conditions. Experience and practice confirm our beliefs and our resolutions. Both our joys and our sorrows, our successes and our failures, are sanctified to the selfsame end: even as the tree is helped to root itself both by the soft showers and the rough winds. The mind is instructed, and in its growing knowledge it gathers reasons for persevering in the good way: the heart is comforted, and so it is made to cling more closely to the consoling truth. The grip grows tighter, and the tread grows firmer, and the man himself becomes more solid and substantial.

This is not a merely natural growth, but is as distinct a work of the Spirit as conversion. The Lord will surely give it to those who are relying upon Him for eternal life. By His inward working He will deliver us from being “unstable as water,” and cause us to be rooted and grounded. It is a part of the method by which He saves us — this building us up into Christ Jesus and causing us to abide in Him. Dear reader, you may daily look for this; and you shall not be disappointed. He whom you trust will make you to be as a tree planted by the rivers of waters, so preserved that even your leaf shall not wither.

What a strength to a church is a confirmed Christian! He is a comfort to the sorrowful, and a help to the weak. Would you not like to be such? Confirmed believers are pillars in the house of our God. These are not carried away by every wind of doctrine, nor overthrown by sudden temptation. They are a great stay to others, and act as anchors in the time of church trouble. You who are beginning the holy life hardly dare to hope that you will become like them. But you need not fear; the good Lord will work in you as well as in them. One of these days you who are now a “babe” in Christ shall be a “father” in the church. Hope for this great thing; but hope for it as a gift of grace, and not as the wages of work, or as the product of your own energy.

The inspired apostle Paul speaks of these people as to be confirmed unto the end. He expected the grace of God to preserve them personally to the end of their lives, or till the Lord Jesus should come. Indeed, he expected that the whole church of God in every place and in all time would be kept to the end of the dispensation, till the Lord Jesus as the Bridegroom should come to celebrate the wedding-feast with his perfected Bride. All who are in Christ will be confirmed in Him till that illustrious day. Has He not said, “Because I live ye shall live also”? He also said, “I give unto my sheep eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand.” He that hath begun a good work in you will confirm it unto the day of Christ. The work of grace in the soul is not a superficial reformation; the life implanted as the new birth comes of a living and incorruptible seed, which liveth and abideth for ever; and the promises of God made to believers are not of a transient character, but involve for their fulfillment the believer’s holding on his way till he comes to endless glory. We are kept by the power of God, through faith unto salvation. “The righteous shall hold on his way.” Not as the result of our own merit or strength, but as a gift of free and undeserved favor those who believe are “preserved in Christ Jesus.” Of the sheep of His fold Jesus will lose none; no member of His Body shall die; no gem of His treasure shall be missing in the day when He makes up His jewels. Dear reader, the salvation which is received by faith is not a thing of months and years; for our Lord Jesus hath “obtained eternal salvation for us,” and that which is eternal cannot come to an end.

Paul also declares his expectation that the Corinthian saints would be “Confirmed to the end blameless.” This blamelessness is a precious part of our keeping. To be kept holy is better than merely to be kept safe. It is a dreadful thing when you see religious people blundering out of one dishonor into another; they have not believed in the power of our Lord to make them blameless. The lives of some professing Christians are a series of stumbles; they are never quite down, and yet they are seldom on their feet. This is not a fit thing for a believer; he is invited to walk with God, and by faith he can attain to steady perseverance in holiness; and he ought to do so. The Lord is able, not only to save us from hell, but to keep us from falling. We need not yield to temptation. Is it not written, “Sin shall not have dominion over you?” The Lord is able to keep the feet of His saints; and He will do it if we will trust Him to do so. We need not defile our garments, we may by His grace keep them unspotted from the world; we are bound to do this, “for without holiness no man shall see the Lord.”

The apostle prophesied for these believers, that which he would have us seek after — that we may be preserved, blameless unto the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.” The revised version has “unreproveable,” instead of “blameless.” Possibly a better rendering would be “unimpeachable.” God grant that in that last great day we may stand free from all charge, that none in the whole universe may dare to challenge our claim to be the redeemed of the Lord. We have sins and infirmities to mourn over, but these are not the kind of faults which would prove us to be out of Christ; we shall be clear of hypocrisy, deceit, hatred, and delight in sin; for these things would be fatal charges. Despite our failings, the Holy Spirit can work in us a character spotless before men; so that, like Daniel, we shall furnish no occasion for accusing tongues, except in the matter of our religion. Multitudes of godly men and women have exhibited lives so transparent, so consistent throughout, that none could gainsay them. The Lord will be able to say of many a believer, as he did of Job, when Satan stood before Him, “Hast thou considered my servant, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God and escheweth evil?” This is what my reader must look for at the Lord’s hands. This is the triumph of the saints — to continue to follow the Lamb whithersoever He goeth, maintaining our integrity as before the living God. May we never turn aside into crooked ways, and give cause to the adversary to blaspheme. Of the true believer it is written, “He keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not.” May it be so written concerning us!

Friend just beginning in the divine life, the Lord can give you an irreproachable character. Even though in your past life you may have gone far into sin, the Lord can altogether deliver you from the power of former habits, and make you an example of virtue. He can not only make you moral, but He can make you abhor every false way and follow after all that is saintly. Do not doubt it. The chief of sinners need not be a whit behind the purest of the saints. Believe for this, and according to your faith shall it be unto you. Oh, what a joy it will be to be found blameless in the day of judgment! We sing not amiss, when we join in that charming hymn:

 

Bold shall I stand in that great day,

For who aught to my charge shall lay;

While through Thy blood absolved I am,

From sin’s tremendous curse and shame?

 

What bliss it will be to enjoy that dauntless courage, when heaven and earth shall flee away from the face of the Judge of all! This bliss shall be the portion of everyone who looks alone to the grace of God in Christ Jesus, and in that sacred might wages continual war with all sin.

Charles H. Spurgeon—All of Grace

Follow along as we read this short but marvelous book. Download your copy here. Next chapter will go out Monday July 2 at 8:00 AM. Central Standard Time.

Chapter XIII : Of Sanctification

1. They who are united to Christ, Effectually called, and regenerated, having a new heart, and a new Spirit created in them, through the vertue of Christ’s death, and Resurrection; are also (a) farther sanctified, really, and personally, through the same vertue, (b) by his word and Spirit dwelling in them; (c) the dominion of the whole body of sin is destroyed, (d) and the several lusts thereof, are more and more weakned, and mortified; and they more and more quickened, and (e) strengthned in all saving graces, to the (f) practice of all true holyness, without which no man shall see the Lord.

a Act. 20.32. Rom. 6.5,6.

b Joh. 17.17. Eph. 3.16,17,18,19. 1 Thes. 5.21,22,23.

c Rom. 6.14.

d Gal. 5.24.

e Col 1.11.

f 2 Cor. 7.1. Heb. 12.14.

2. This Sanctification is (g) throughout, in the whole man, yet imperfect (h) in this life; there abideth still some remnants of corruption in every part, whence ariseth a (i) continual, and irreconcilable war; the Flesh lusting against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the Flesh.

g 1 Thes. 5.23.

h Rom. 7.18,23.

i Gal. 5.17. 1 Pet. 2.11.

3. In which war, although the remaining corruption for a time may much (k) prevail; yet through the continual supply of strength from the sanctifying Spirit of Christ the (l) regenerate part doth overcome; and so the Saints grow in Grace, perfecting holiness in the fear of God, (m) pressing after an heavenly life, in Evangelical Obedience to all the commands which Christ as Head and King, in his Word hath prescribed to them.

k Rom. 7.23.

l Rom. 6.14.

m Eph. 4.15.16. 2 Cor. 3.18. ch. 7.1.

The 1677/89 London Baptist Confession

God Reproves Sinners by His Word

By his Word—All Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable for doctrine, and for reproof. All the invitations, commands, and threatenings, and warnings in the Bible are so many admonitions to sinners.

Asahel Nettleton-The Destruction of Hardened Sinners

Lordship Salvation is Biblical

There is a move within Christendom known as ‘Dispensationalism’. This movement is widely popular among the western churches of the world; namely among those who identify themselves as Christians in America. This movement has gained vast popularity because of its emphasis on the doctrines concerning eschatology. The word eschatology is a word that is defined as ‘a study of things related to the end times’.

What most do not realize concerning this movement known as dispensationalism, is that it is very antinomian at the core of its teachings. The word ‘antinomianism’ simply means ‘against law’. The proponents of dispensationalism are of the sort who teach that the law has simply been done away with in Christ. They proclaim that all the laws of the Old Testament, namely the civil, ceremonial, and moral laws have been abolished. This type teaching has caused some serious damage to the doctrines of sanctification and how Christians are to walk and live their lives since coming to know Christ.

For instance a new doctrine has been added to the scriptures that never had existed until the rise of dispensationalism. This doctrine is a doctrine that distinguishes between three types of persons in the world. The first type of person would be the natural man. The natural man doesn’t know Christ, but lives after the sinful nature that he is born with. The second type person is a carnal Christian. A carnal Christian is one who has come to the knowledge of Christ and has accepted him as saviour, yet doesn’t allow him to reign as Lord in his life. This carnal Christian can live in all types of heinous sins and still be a Christian because he is just one who is still living after the flesh and not the spirit. The third type person would be the spiritual Christian. This is the Christian who has accepted Christ as both Saviour and Lord. Though he may at times still sin, nonetheless he allows Christ to be the Lord of his life.

The Bible knows of no such doctrines as I described above. The Bible distinguishes between the natural man and the spiritual man. The natural man is unsaved, the spiritual man is one who has accepted Christ as Saviour and Lord.

A debate arose within dispensational circles between Charles Ryrie, Zane Hodges and John MacArthur over this subject. Ryrie and Hodge were of the belief that one could accept Christ as Saviour, but not Lord, while still living in an unchanged state. MacArthur took the opposite approach and defended the historic Protestant position that conversion is an act of God that will cause the sinner to affirm Christ as both Saviour and Lord and a changed life will be the result of this affirmation. Only within a belief system such as dispensationalism would such a debate arise.

Below I want to show you a video by James White who is teaching on the fact that “Lordship Salvation is the Biblical Historic Protestant Teaching.”

Gays Shove Evangelists

It never ceases to amaze me how those who push for rights, that are twisted and perverted, will do so under the guise that the opposing side are just bigots. What I am speaking of today is the homosexual movement’s agenda to gain rights that are supposedly equal to what heterosexual couples enjoy. The fact of the matter however; is that they don’t want the same rights as heterosexual couples, but instead want special rights. In other words they want to do what they want to do and everyone else has to stand around and agree with it. I am going to prove this assertion in the video below.

In the video below we will see gays mocking and making fun and even resorting to violence in order to get their so-called points across. This is the real mindset of homosexuals. They believe that no one has any rights to do what they please, except for them. If you stand on a corner and preach the gospel, in a land where you have the right to do so, then homosexuals who don’t like it, will violate your rights by resulting to violence against you.

Before I go any further I want to state what God says about homosexuality. God condemns this act. He declares it an abomination in his sight and one that will result in the participant’s eternal destruction.

 

Leviticus18:22 Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.

Leviticus 20:13 If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.

1 Corinthians 6:9 You know that wicked people will not inherit thekingdomofGod, don’t you? Stop deceiving yourselves! Sexually immoral people, idolaters, adulterers, male prostitutes, HOMOSEXUALS,

1 Corinthians  6:10  thieves, greedy people, drunks, slanderers, and robbers will not inherit the kingdom of God.

 

WARNING: Video contains partial nudity and profanity. Click on link to play.

  http://www.mrctv.org/embed/113865

A Radical Change Takes Place in the Sinner

As the soul by faith, with broken heart (and not otherwise), beholds the glory of the Lord, in the mirror of the two Testaments (and not in the New without the Old), he is by the continual operations of the Spirit in him (Phil. 1:6) “changed into the same image.” The views thus obtained of the Divine character excite answerable affections in the beholder. Rational argument may convince a man that God is holy, yet that is a vastly different thing from his heart being brought to love Divine holiness. But when the Spirit removes the veil of enmity and prejudice from the mind and enables the understanding to see light in God’s light, there is a genuine esteem of and delight in God’s character. The heart is won with the excellency of His moral perfections, and he perceives the rightness and beauty of a life wholly devoted to His glory. Thus there is a radical change in his judgment, disposition and conduct.

Arthur W. Pink-Studies in the Scriptures January, 1937 The Spirit Transforming

All of Grace—The Fear of Final Falling

Chapter Sixteen

The Fear of Final Falling

A DARK FEAR haunts the minds of many who are coming to Christ; they are afraid that they shall not persevere to the end. I have heard the seeker say: “If I were to cast my soul upon Jesus, yet peradventure I should after all draw back into perdition. I have had good feelings before now, and they have died away. My goodness has been as the morning cloud, and as the early dew. It has come on a sudden, lasted for a season, promised much, and then vanished away.”

I believe that this fear is often the father of the fact; and that some who have been afraid to trust Christ for all time, and for all eternity, have failed because they had a temporary faith, which never went far enough to save them. They set out trusting to Jesus in a measure, but looking to themselves for continuance and perseverance in the heavenward way; and so they set out faultily, and, as a natural consequence, turned back before long. If we trust to ourselves for our holding on we shall not hold on. Even though we rest in Jesus for a part of our salvation, we shall fail if we trust to self for anything. No chain is stronger than its weakest link: if Jesus be our hope for everything, except one thing, we shall utterly fail, because in that one point we shall come to nought. I have no doubt whatever that a mistake about the perseverance of the saints has prevented the perseverance of many who did run well. What did hinder them that they should not continue to run? They trusted to themselves for that running, and so they stopped short. Beware of mixing even a little of self with the mortar with which you build, or you will make it untempered mortar, and the stones will not hold together. If you look to Christ for your beginnings, beware of looking to yourself for your endings. He is Alpha. See to it that you make Him Omega also. If you begin in the Spirit you must not hope to be made perfect by the flesh. Begin as you mean to go on, and go on as you began, and let the Lord be all in all to you. Oh, that God, the Holy Spirit, may give us a very clear idea of where the strength must come from by which we shall be preserved until the day of our Lord’s appearing!

Here is what Paul once said upon this subject when he was writing to the Corinthians:

 

Our Lord Jesus Christ, who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful, by whom ye were called unto the fellowship of his Son Jesus Christ our Lord (1 Corinthians 1:8, 9).

 

This language silently admits a great need, by telling us how it is provided for. Wherever the Lord makes a provision, we are quite sure that there was a need for it, since no superfluities encumber the covenant of grace. Golden shields hung in Solomon’s courts which were never used, but there are none such in the armory of God. What God has provided we shall surely need. Between this hour and the consummation of all things every promise of God and every provision of the covenant of grace will be brought into requisition. The urgent need of the believing soul is confirmation, continuance, final perseverance, preservation to the end. This is the great necessity of the most advanced believers, for Paul was writing to saints at Corinth, who were men of a high order, of whom he could say, “I thank my God always on your behalf, for the grace of God which is given you by Jesus Christ.” Such men are the very persons who most assuredly feel that they have daily need of new grace if they are to hold on, and hold out, and come off conquerors at the last. If you were not saints you would have no grace, and you would feel no need of more grace; but because you are men of God, therefore you feel the daily demands of the spiritual life. The marble statue requires no food; but the living man hungers and thirsts, and he rejoices that his bread and his water are made sure to him, for else he would certainly faint by the way. The believer’s personal wants make it inevitable that he should daily draw from the great source of all supplies; for what could he do if he could not resort to his God?

This is true of the most gifted of the saints — of those men at Corinth who were enriched with all utterance and with all knowledge. They needed to be confirmed to the end, or else their gifts and attainments would prove their ruin. If we had the tongues of men and of angels, if we did not receive fresh grace, where should we be? If we had all experience till we were fathers in the church — if we had been taught of God so as to understand all mysteries — yet we could not live a single day without the divine life flowing into us from our Covenant Head. How could we hope to hold on for a single hour, to say nothing of a lifetime, unless the Lord should hold us on? He who began the good work in us must perform it unto the day of Christ, or it will prove a painful failure.

This great necessity arises very much from our own selves. In some there is a painful fear that they shall not persevere in grace because they know their own fickleness. Certain persons are constitutionally unstable. Some men are by nature conservative, not to say obstinate; but others are as naturally variable and volatile. Like butterflies they flit from flower to flower, till they visit all the beauties of the garden, and settle upon none of them. They are never long enough in one place to do any good; not even in their business nor in their intellectual pursuits. Such persons may well be afraid that ten, twenty, thirty, forty, perhaps fifty years of continuous religious watchfulness will be a great deal too much for them. We see men joining first one church and then another, till they box the compass. They are everything by turns and nothing long. Such have double need to pray that they may be divinely confirmed, and may be made not only steadfast but unmoveable, or otherwise they will not be found “always abounding in the work of the Lord.”

All of us, even if we have no constitutional temptation to fickleness, must feel our own weakness if we are really quickened of God. Dear reader, do you not find enough in any one single day to make you stumble? You that desire to walk in perfect holiness, as I trust you do; you that have set before you a high standard of what a Christian should be — do you not find that before the breakfast things are cleared away from the table, you have displayed enough folly to make you ashamed of yourselves? If we were to shut ourselves up in the lone cell of a hermit, temptation would follow us; for as long as we cannot escape from ourselves we cannot escape from incitements to sin. There is that within our hearts which should make us watchful and humble before God. If he does not confirm us, we are so weak that we shall stumble and fall; not overturned by an enemy, but by our own carelessness. Lord, be thou our strength. We are weakness itself.

Besides that, there is the weariness which comes of a long life. When we begin our Christian profession we mount up with wings as eagles, further on we run without weariness; but in our best and truest days we walk without fainting. Our pace seems slower, but it is more serviceable and better sustained. I pray God that the energy of our youth may continue with us so far as it is the energy of the Spirit and not the mere fermentation of proud flesh. He that has long been on the road to Heaven finds that there was good reason why it was promised that his shoes should be iron and brass, for the road is rough. He has discovered that there are Hills of Difficulty and Valleys of Humiliation; that there is a Vale of Deathshade, and, worse still, a Vanity Fair — and all these are to be traversed. If there beDelectableMountains (and, thank God, there are,) there are also Castles of Despair, the inside of which pilgrims have too often seen. Considering all things, those who hold out to the end in the way of holiness will be “men wondered at.”

“O world of wonders, I can say no less.” The days of a Christian’s life are like so many Koh-i-noors of mercy threaded upon the golden string of divine faithfulness. In Heaven we shall tell to angels, and principalities, and powers, the unsearchable riches of Christ which were spent upon us, and enjoyed by us while we were here below. We have been kept alive on the brink of death. Our spiritual life has been a flame burning on in the midst of the sea, a stone that has remained suspended in the air. It will amaze the universe to see us enter the pearly gate, blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. We ought to be full of grateful wonder if kept for an hour; and I trust we are.

If this were all, there would be enough cause for anxiety; but there is far more. We have to think of what a place we live in. The world is a howling wilderness to many of God’s people. Some of us are greatly indulged in the providence of God, but others have a stern fight of it. We begin our day with prayer, and we hear the voice of holy song full often in our houses; but many good people have scarcely risen from their knees in the morning before they are saluted with blasphemy. They go out to work, and all day long they are vexed with filthy conversation like righteous Lot in Sodom. Can you even walk the open streets without your ears being afflicted with foul language? The world is no friend to grace. The best we can do with this world is to get through it as quickly as we can, for we dwell in an enemy’s country. A robber lurks in every bush. Everywhere we need to travel with a “drawn sword” in our hand, or at least with that weapon which is called all-prayer ever at our side; for we have to contend for every inch of our way. Make no mistake about this, or you will be rudely shaken out of your fond delusion. O God, help us, and confirm us to the end, or where shall we be?

True religion is supernatural at its beginning, supernatural in its continuance, and supernatural in its close. It is the work of God from first to last. There is great need that the hand of the Lord should be stretched out still: that need my reader is feeling now, and I am glad that he should feel it; for now he will look for his own preservation to the Lord who alone is able to keep us from failing, and glorify us with His Son.

Charles H. Spurgeon—All of Grace

Follow along as we read this short but marvelous book. Download your copy here. Next chapter will go out Wednesday June 27 at 8:00 AM. Central Standard Time.

Atheist Converts to Catholicism

Last Monday a popular Atheist Blogger came out of the closet. The reason I state that this Atheist came out of the closet is because all men know that God exist. Scripture is clear on this subject. Let’s examine Romans 1:18-20:

 

Romans1:18 For God’s wrath is being revealed from heaven against all the ungodliness and wickedness of those who in their wickedness suppress the truth.

Romans1:19 For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God himself has made it plain to them.

Romans 1:20 For since the creation of the world his invisible attributes-his eternal power and divine nature-have been understood and observed by what he made, so that people are without excuse. (ISV)

 

Notice that verse eighteen states that God’s wrath is revealed from heaven against all the ungodliness and wickedness of those who suppress truth. What truth are they suppressing? They are suppressing the truth that God exist and that the entire created universe is proof of his eternal power and divine nature.

So this is the reason I stated that this blogger finally came out of the closet and admitted what they knew to be true all along and that is that God exist. Everyone knows this truth. Those who fight against it, do so because they want to live a life free from a guilty conscience and they are afraid of his judgment.

This Atheist converted to Catholicism in their proclamation that God exist. So they went from Atheist to Theist, but chose the Catholic Church to call their faith. I only pray that after much examination of the scriptures they will come to realize why Catholicism doesn’t represent true Christianity. This is a subject for another post, so I will point you to the original news story of this bloggers renouncement of atheism. You can read the story here.