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Posts Tagged ‘Exhort’

Hold fast the form of sound words

January 19, 2015 3 comments

CharlesSpurgeon“Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.” — 2 Timothy 1:13.

MY incessant anxiety for you, dearly beloved in the faith of Jesus Christ, is that I may be able, in the first place, to teach you what God’s truth is; and then, trusting that I have to the best of my ability taught you what I believe to be God’s most holy gospel, my next anxiety is, that you should “hold fast the form of sound words,” that whatever may occur in the future, should death snatch away your pastor, or should anything occur which might put you in perilous circumstances, so that you were tempted to embrace any system of heresy, you might every one of you stand as firm and as unmoved as rocks, and as strong as mountains be, abiding in the faith which was once delivered unto the saints,” whereof ye have heard, and which we have proclaimed unto you. If the gospel be worth your hearing, and if it be a true gospel, it is worth your holding, and our anxiety is, that you should be so established in the faith, that you may, “hold fast the profession of your faith without wavering, for he is faithful that has promised.”

The Apostle most earnestly admonished Timothy to “hold fast the form of sound words which he had heard of him in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.” I do not suppose that by this it is intended that Paul ever wrote out for Timothy a list of doctrines; or that he gave him a small abstract of divinity, to which he desired him to subscribe his name, as the articles of the church over which he was made a pastor. If so, doubtless that document would have been preserved and enrolled in the canons of Scripture as one of the writings of an inspired man. I can scarce think such a creed would have been lost, whilst other creeds have been preserved and handed down to us. I conceive that what the Apostle meant was this: — “Timothy, when I have preached to you, you have heard certain grand outlines of truth, you have heard from me the great system of faith in Jesus Christ; in my writings and public speakings you have heard me continually insist upon a certain pattern or form of faith; now I bid you, my dearly beloved son in the gospel, “Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou best heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus.”

This morning I shall first attempt to tell you what I conceive to be a “form of sound words,” which we are to hold fast. In the second place, I shall endeavor to urge upon you the strong necessity of holding fast that form. In the third place, I shall warn you of some dangers to which you will be exposed, tempting you to give up the form of sound words. Then, in the last place I shall mention the two great holdfasts, faith and love in Christ Jesus, which are the great means of “holding fast the form of sound words.”

Charles H. Spurgeon-The Form of Sound Words-Delivered on Sabbath, May 11, 1856

Why Is the Prosperity Gospel Attractive?

January 13, 2014 1 comment

“Being poor is a sin” (Robert Tilton).

“If we please God we will be rich” (Jerry Savelle).

“God wants his children to wear the best clothes…drive the best cars and have the best of everything; just ask for what we need” (Kenneth Hagin, Sr.).

These are some bewildering but common statements from “prosperity gospel” preachers. Their god is a sort of cosmic entrepreneur who can be used, by tithing and offering, to attain what really matters: a prosperous life in merely earthly terms.

FROM SUCH PEOPLE TURN AWAY”

Paul compels us to stay away from “men of corrupt minds and destitute of the truth, who suppose that godliness is a means of gain” (1 Tim. 6:5). And in his second letter to Timothy he warns his son in the faith “that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, boasters, proud… lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!” (2 Tim. 3:1-5).

Peter also advises us that, just as there were false prophets among the people of God in the old covenant, “there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies…And many will follow their sensuality, and because of them the way of truth will be blasphemed. And in their greed they will exploit you with false words” (2 Pet. 2:1-3; cf. Jude 11-16).

Sadly, in spite of the Scriptures’ clear warnings, the prosperity gospel has a large and growing group of followers. This isn’t hard to understand, since the message appeals so directly to our native greed. Yet it is sad and bewildering that many people remain in the movement for a long time, even their whole life, since its preachers cannot fulfill their promises.

 

Read the entire article over at 9Marks by clicking here.

The Anointing: Benny Hinn vs. the Bible

There is so much that can (and should) be said about this kind of event/experience/teaching/debacle. It is not wrong, my friends, just because it looks silly and strange and odd. Many dismiss this just because it is so far outside of our experience. That is not the problem. The problem is it is so utterly, thoroughly opposed to everything the Bible says about the ministry of the Holy Spirit. Whether the world finds it laughable or not really doesn’t matter (they think the very Puritan, plain worship services at my church are laughable, too, just not in quite the same fashion). It is not that there is intense emotion displayed by some (how many are genuine and how many are plants there to get others “started” is impossible to determine). The real problem needs to be identified: you have a multi-millionaire standing on stage getting a huge paycheck for promulgating a shallow message wrapped up in the promise of prosperity and healing pretending to control the very Spirit of God who then “anoints” people in a fashion and by a means utterly outside of what the Spirit Himself has defined in the God-breathed Scriptures. The result is not παιδεία nor is it τάξις nor is it σωφρονισμός—three Greek terms that cluster around the vital theme of “discipline, sober-mindedness, order,” in the New Testament. And this is what the Spirit brings. He does not bring chaos and confusion (ἀκαταστασίας, which is what we see in this video, 1 Corinthians 14:33), He brings order and discipline. Of course, that kind of “anointing” does not sell books or result in large offerings, so that is problematic.

Does the Bible know anything of an anointing that can be “received” through the yelling of the word “fire” and the waving of a garment (accompanied by choreographed music, lighting, choirs, etc.)? No, it does not. Most of the appearances of the term (χρίω; χρῖσμα, τος) have to do, of course, with the Messiah, the anointed one. But it does appear in reference to believers:

“The One Who establishes us together with you in Christ and anointed us is God, who also sealed us and gave us the Spirit in our hearts as a pledge. (2 Corinthians 1:21–22)

 

Read the entire article over at Alpha & Omega by clicking this link

The hardened sinner seeks peace and safety, but treasures up wrath

September 26, 2012 Leave a comment

The sinner says, peace and safety. Let us alone. God says, He is joined to idols, let him alone. The sinner says, Go thy way for this time. God says, My Spirit shall no longer strive. The sinner chooses not to be under conviction, and now suppose God’s choice and the sinner’s should happen to coincide. All can see the equity of his punishment. If he will not lay up treasure in heaven, then he must lay up treasure in hell. And this is done by hardening his own heart. After thy hardness and impenitent heart thou treasurest up unto thyself wrath against the day of wrath.

Asahel Nettleton-The Destruction of Hardened Sinners

God’s reproof hardens a sinner

Allusion is made to the bullock which has repeatedly felt the galling yoke. At length his neck becomes hardened, and he can bear it without feeling or flinching. The sinner never hears a galling reproof without producing some effect. If his heart be not subdued, and changed, he becomes at length more hardened. The child which is often corrected, but not subdued, becomes more hardened.

Asahel Nettleton-The Destruction of Hardened Sinners

Woe to the Minister Who will not Reprove Sinners

But woe to those ministers who do not feel the weight of this charge-and woe to those wincing hearers, who (having itching ears that will not endure sound doctrine, heap to themselves teachers that prophecy smooth things, and say peace, peace to the wicked, when God hath declared that there is no peace for them. Against such preachers and hearers the anger of the Lord and his jealousy shall smoke, and all the curses that are written in this book shall be upon them, and the Lord shall blot out their names from under heaven. If ye cease to warn the wicked, the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but his blood will I require at thine hand. Mark: the consequence of withholding the warning, is the destruction of both the preacher and the hearer.

Asahel Nettleton-The Destruction of Hardened Sinners

God reproves Sinners by His Ministers

By his ministers—Son of man, I have made thee a watchman to the house of Israel: therefore hear the word at my mouth, and give them warning from me. Show thy people their transgression, and the house ofIsraeltheir sin. Hear the injunction of Paul on Timothy: I charge thee before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall judge the quick and the dead at his appearing and kingdom; Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. For the time will come (it seems as if, in uttering this prediction the Apostle had an eye upon sinners of our own day); For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears.

Asahel Nettleton-The Destruction of Hardened Sinners