Thursday, March 05, 2015

The Supremacy and Sufficiency of Scripture

The blessed Scriptures are of infinite worth and value


Here you may find . . .
  a remedy for every disease,
  a balm for every wound,
  a plaster for every sore,
  milk for babes,
  meat for strong men,
  comfort for the afflicted,
  support for the tempted,
  solace for the distressed,
  ease for the wearied,
  a staff to support the feeble,
  a sword to defend the weak.

The holy Scriptures are . . .
  the map of God's mercy — and man's misery,
  the touchstone of truth,
  the shop of remedies against all maladies,
  the hammer of vices,
  the treasury of virtues,
  the exposer of all sensual and worldly vanities,
  the balance of equity,
  the most perfect rule of all justice and honesty.

Ah, friends, no book befits your hands like the Bible!


~Thomas Brooks


2Ti 3:16  All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17  that the man of God may be complete, equipped for every good work. 

Col 2:2  that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God's mystery, which is Christ, 3  in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4  I say this in order that no one may delude you with plausible arguments. 

Mat 4:4  But he answered, "It is written, "'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'"

Joh 17:17  Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth.

Christ Jesus: the glorious theme of Scripture, the substance of the Gospel



Jesus is the one great theme both of the Old Testament and the New. The whole Bible is designed to testify ofChrist"The Scriptures point to Me!" John 5:39

In Christ the Messiah, in Jesus the Savior, in the Son of God the Redeemer — all the truths of the Bible center. 

To Him all the types and shadows point! 

Of Him all the prophecies give witness! 

All the glory of the Scriptures, from Genesis to Revelation — culminates at the cross of Christ!

The Bible would be an inexplicable mystery apart from Christ, who unfolds and explains it all. 

He is the golden Key which unlocks the divine treasury of Scriptural revelation! 

Until He is seen, the Bible is, in a sense — a great mystery. But when He is found, it is a glorious revelation. Every mystery is opened, every enigma explained, every discrepancy harmonized, and every truth and page, sentence and word, quickened with a life and glowing with a light flowing down from the throne of the Eternal God. 

Christ is the substance of the Gospel. 
All its divine doctrines
all its holy precepts
all its gracious instructions
all its precious promises
all its glorious hopes —  
meet, center, and fill up their entire compass in Jesus! 


He is the Alpha and the Omega of the Bible, from the first verse in Genesis — to the last verse in Revelation. 

Oh, study the Scriptures of truth with a view of learning Christ. 

Do not study the Bible as a mere history. 
Do not read it as a mere poem. 
Do not search it as a book of science. 
It is all that, but infinitely more. 
The Bible is the Book of Jesus! 
It is a Revelation of Christ! 


Christ is the golden thread which runs through the whole! 
Blessed Lord Jesus! I will read and study and dig into the Scriptures to find and learn more of You! 

You, Immanuel, are the fragrance of this divine box of precious ointment. 
You are the beauteous gem sparkling in this divine cabinet. 
You are the Tree of life planted in the center of this divine garden. 
You are the Ocean whose stream quickens and nourishes all who draw water out of this divine well of salvation. 

The Bible is all about You!

by Octavius Winslow

Col 2:2  that their hearts may be encouraged, being knit together in love, to reach all the riches of full assurance of understanding and the knowledge of God's mystery, which is Christ,3  in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

Faith

"A natural faith is sufficient for trusting a human object; but a supernatural faith is required to savingly trust in a Divine object."

~Arthur Pink, "Studies On Saving Faith"

Exalting Scripture Above All Things

Psa 138:2  I bow down toward your holy temple and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness, for you have exalted above all things your name and your word.

You will never hear Jesus Christ ever say "You held My Word too high" or "You were overly committed to My Word."

Never.

Yet you will hear "Christians" say just that. You will hear them accuse biblical Christians of "worshiping" the Bible. But you will never hear God say that. Why? Because He Himself exalts His Word above all things. He holds it higher than anything else. We are to treasure what He treasures, exalt what He exalts.

No one can exalt Scripture too highly.


The Sufficiency of Scripture

A martyr's Bible 

"Oh, how I love Your law! I meditate on it all day long!" Psalm 119:97
The whole of Scripture is but one entire love letter, dispatched from the Lord Christ, to His beloved spouse! 

Oh! the mysteries, the excellencies, the glories which are in this incomparable book! There are none so useful, none so needful, none so delightful, none so necessary to make you happy and to keep you happy--as this!

Ah! the Word of the Lord is . . .
  a light to guide you,
  a counselor to counsel you,
  a comforter to comfort you,
  a staff to support you,
  a sword to defend you, 
  a physician to cure you! 

The Word is . . . 
  a mine to enrich you,
  a robe to clothe you, 
  a crown to crown you. 
  bread to strengthen you, 
  wine to cheer you, 
  a honeycomb to feast you, 
  music to delight you, 
  a paradise to entertain you!

Oh! therefore, before all and above all:
  search the Scripture,
  study the Scripture,
  meditate on the Scripture,
  delight in the Scripture,
  treasure up the Scripture! 

There is . . .
  no wisdom like Scripture wisdom,
  no knowledge like Scripture knowledge,
  no experience like Scripture experience,
  no comforts like Scripture comforts,
  no delights like Scripture delights,
  no convictions like Scripture convictions,
  no conversion like Scripture conversion!

I exhort you to a speedyseriousdiligent
and constant study of the Scripture. 
Ah! you do not know how soon . . . 
  your blind minds may be enlightened,
  your hard hearts may be softened,
  your proud spirits may be humbled, 
  your sinful natures may be changed,
  your defiled consciences may be purged,
  your distempered affections may be regulated,
  and your poor souls may be saved . . .
    by searching into the Scriptures,
    by reading the Scripture, and 
    by pondering upon the Scripture. 

Ah! if you do not in good earnest,
give yourself up . . .
  to the reading,
  to the studying,
  to the pondering, 
  to the believing,
  to the practicing,
  to the applying, and
  to the living up to the Scripture--
Satan will be too hard for you, 
the world will be too hard for you, 
your lusts will be too hard for you, 
temptations will be too hard for you, 
deceivers will be too hard for you, 
and in the end you will be miserable!

(Thomas Brooks, "Apples of Gold" 1660)

Boycott Chick-fil-A?

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

The Pictures Say It All

Oh the irony and spiritual harlotry.... This is absolute blasphemy and anti-biblical. The photos say it all. This is in our local religious bookstore.





I saw trinkets for  kids' first mass with a silver container to keep the Eucharist plus a bonus rosary.

When Tolerance Is Sin

This is a good article on the sin of unbiblical tolerance, by William MacDonald as shared by Take Heed Ministries:


Tolerance can be a virtue, but it can also betray an inexcusable weakness of character. We admire the person who tolerates differences where no great issue is at stake. He allows for a variety of preferences, methods and unimportant viewpoints. He would rather be killed for a sheep than for a lamb.
But there is another tolerance that is despicable. This is the willingness to remain silent when God’s name is blasphemed or when Christ is dishonoured. It is the treachery of silence when truth is on the scaffold. It is the unwillingness to speak out against evil. Tolerance that condones deceit and unrighteousness is sin.
Those who think that Jesus was always tolerant should read Matthew 23, a denunciation of hypocrisy. This passage proves forever that our Lord was capable of scathing indignation at the pretence of religious leaders. Or they should read Revelation 2:20 where He condemned the church in Thyatira for tolerating a woman teacher named Jezebel....

End quote.

Read the rest here.
2Co 10:5  We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ, 

2Jo 1:9  Everyone who goes on ahead and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God. Whoever abides in the teaching has both the Father and the Son.10  If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house or give him any greeting, 11  for whoever greets him takes part in his wicked works.

1Co 5:11  But now I am writing to  you NOT TO ASSOCIATE  with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindler--not even to eat with such a one. 

Who's Side Are You On?

2Co 10:5 We destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ,
If we're supposed to be destroying every argument and opinion that is raised against Christ, then why are so many trying to accept such arguments and opinions and consider them valid enough to accept them among "believers" as credible? Evolution is an example. It sets itself up against Christ and we're to destroy it, yet how many accept it? Just who's side are we really on if we accept that which we're demanded to destroy?
This is a Lordship issue. A truth issue. An issue of true faith.

Monday, March 02, 2015

It's All Essential

There is nothing in this Bible which is unimportant. Every verse in it has a solemn meaning, and if we have not found it out yet, we hope yet to do it.

~Spurgeon

Sunday, March 01, 2015

Right Focus



I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. Philippians 4:13
Let us pray for patient submission and hope when we are abased; for humility and a heavenly mind when exalted. It is a special grace to have an equal temper of mind always. And in a low state not to lose our comfort in God, nor distrust his providence, nor take any wrong course for our own supply. In a prosperous condition not to be proud, or secure, or worldly. This is a harder lesson than the other; for the temptations of fulness and prosperity are more than those of affliction and want.
~ Matthew Henry

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Tullian Tchividjian Says Forgiveness Isn't Dependent Upon Purity of One's Confession


Christ's forgiveness of your sins is not dependent on the purity of your confession, but rather the purity of his sacrifice.
End quote.

As Karen from Girded with Truth blog shared,

CONFESSION OF SIN. We know that this is absolutely necessary to salvation. Unless there be a true and hearty confession of our sins to God, we have no promise that we shall find mercy through the blood of the Redeemer. "Whosoever confesseth his sins and forsaketh them shall find mercy." But there is no promise in the Bible to the man who will not confess his sins. Yet, as upon every point of Scripture there is a liability of being deceived, so more especially in the matter of confession of sin. There be many who make a confession, and a confession before God, who notwithstanding, receive no blessing, because their confession has not in it certain marks which are required by God to prove it genuine and sincere, and which demonstrate it to be the work of the Holy Spirit.
~ C.H. Spurgeon

So true.

A heart that does not *really* agree with God that one's sin *is* sin, is still in rebellion toward God and is still married to his sin. This is nothing but phariseeism. Mouthing the words, but the heart is far from God, still standing in pride and self-righteousness.
Rom 10:9 because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. 

1Jn 1:8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 
1Jn 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 
1Jn 1:10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us. 

Psa 51:3 For I know my transgressions, and my sin is ever before me. 4 Against you, you only, have I sinned and done what is evil in your sight, so that you may be justified in your words and blameless in your judgment.


If the professed convert distinctly and deliberately declares that he knows the Lord’s will but does not mean to attend to it, you are not to pamper his presumption, but it is your duty to assure him that he is not saved. Do not suppose that the Gospel is magnified or God glorified by going to the worldlings and telling them that they may be saved at this moment by simply accepting Christ as their Savior, while they are wedded to their idols, and their hearts are still in love with sin. If I do so I tell them a lie, pervert the Gospel , insult Christ, and turn the grace of God into lasciviousness.” 

~CH Spurgeon

The Atonement

"Few seem to realize the fearful implications which necessarily follow the principles they hold and advocate. To predicate an atonement which fails to atone, a redemption which does not redeem, a sacrifice which secures not the actual remission of sins is a horrible reflection upon all the attributes of God. To make the efficacy or success of the greatest of all God's works dependent upon the choice of fallen and depraved creatures is to magnify man at the cost of dethroning his Maker."

~Arthur Pink, "The Satisfaction of Christ, Studies in the Atonement"

Friday, February 27, 2015

Dealing With Heresy, Though None Dare Call It Heresy

Is the NPP controversy an intramural dispute between Evangelical Christians? Is this a debate between brethren? Unfortunately this is generally the way the issue is framed whenever it is debated. Very few are willing to draw the conclusion that this is anything else. It isn't politically correct. It isn't nice. And if there is anything that is unforgivable in contemporary "Christianity," it is failing to be nice when dealing with heretics.
Neither the Old Testament prophets, nor the New Testament apostles, nor Christ himself was "nice." Rather, their ministries were characterized by confrontation. Elijah confronted Ahab and mocked the priests of Baal. Jehu rebuked the godly king Jehoshaphat for his compromising with Ahab and declared, "Should you help the ungodly, and love them that hate the LORD? Therefore is wrath upon you from before the LORD" (2 Chronicles 19:2). David declared of the enemies of the Lord, "Do not I hate them, O LORD, that hate you? And am not I grieved with those that rise up against you? I hate them with perfect hatred: I count them my enemies" (Psalm 139:21-22). Christ himself repeatedly confronted the religious leaders of his day, the official spokesmen for Second-Temple Judaism, and his rebukes were sharp in the extreme. Today's "Evangelicals" extend the right hand of fellowship to wolves in sheep's clothing and count heretics as "esteemed brethren." (3)
The great question before us is this: Is the Gospel of Jesus Christ a negotiable doctrine? Can the church even exist without the Gospel? We are not dealing with minor differences, but with errors that are totally destructive of the Christian faith....

A maxim in the political world says, "Treason never prospers; what's the reason? If it prosper, none dare call it treason." The parallel maxim in ecclesiology would be, "Heresy never prospers, for if it prosper, none dare call it heresy." Is this the reason that we never hear of any minister or seminary professor being charged with heresy, despite the apostasy all around us, even in Reformed churches? Is this why we never hear of any church court accusing a false teacher of being a false teacher? 

The Old Testament is replete with warnings about false prophets. The New Testament is replete with warnings about false teachers. Twenty-two of the twenty-seven books of the New Testament contain such warnings. The churches are filled with theological confusion, error, and unbelief, yet we never hear these warnings from the lips of church leaders. Instead, we see false teachers honored as "esteemed brethren." We see them accepted and even honored by the churches. And we see those who would confront them in the spirit of Elijah, those who would strip away the sheep's clothing and expose the wolves, sanctimoniously condemned as troublemakers, unloving, and schismatics. Heresy must be prospering in the churches, for none dare call it heresy.

Let us heed Paul's words: "For I know this, that after my departing grievous wolves shall enter in among you, not sparing the flock. Also of your own selves shall men arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away disciples after them. Therefore watch, and remember that for the space of three years I ceased not to warn every one night and day with tears" (Acts 20:29-31). "For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as ministers of righteousness, whose end shall be according to their works" (2 Corinthians 11:13-15).

~The Trinity Foundation on "The New Perspective on Paul"

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Once Pro-Sodomy- Ban Attorney Mike Bower Now Supports Sodomy Unions

Bowers v. Hardwick, the 1986 Supreme Court decision allowing state bans on “homosexual sodomy,” was only before the Supreme Court because Bowers, then the attorney general of Georgia, asked the justices to hear the case and uphold the constitutionality of the ban.
Nearly 30 years later, Bowers says he’s “changed as society has changed.”
On Tuesday, Bowers released a scathing seven-page memo detailing his legal conclusion that pending “religious liberty” legislation in Georgia — as he put it in an extensive interview with BuzzFeed News — “is an excuse to discriminate.”

“And, my faith says that the second most important commandant of my faith is to love your neighbor as yourself.”

End quotes.

**Warning** There are a few cuss words in this article. I guess Bower's "faith" is ok with that too.

His "neighbor" to "love" was a Playboy Club waitress that he committed adultery with for ten years. Yet he claims his 52 year marriage is one reason he's against sodomy bans. That's horrible.

This is one unwise, foolish man. Repenting of what is right, is apostasy. His heart has hardened, not softened, over the last 30 years.

Listen, truth does not change, because the God of Truth does not change. Ever. Bower is an example of Post-Modern thinking, a silly man who has no true convictions of truth, just what is convenient at the time and makes life easiest. After all, now that he's 73 and not running for office, he can say whatever he wants, right? Like old age is an excuse for liberalism and compromise?

Romans 1 is still in effect. God is the Judge of all people and HE has already judged sodomy to be damnable as well as harmful to society. God NEVER says that sodomy is "love" nor is it holy and right. It is actually the fruit of hatred toward God. It is utter rebellion against HIM and HIS laws. Sodomy is the epitome of self gratification, not true selfless love which Scripture speaks about (in the Greek, it is "agape" and really only truly known among Christians, as eros (which is what Bowers is referring to when he uses "love") and phileo (brotherly affection). Lust is NOT love, it's self-gratification and is covetousness (thus breaking at least two of the Ten Commandments). Whatever "faith" Bowers has, it's not real, biblical, Christ Jesus-exalting Christian faith, that's for sure.

Encouragement

The Doctrine of Seperation


It is clearly a vital duty of Christians to stand apart from false teachers who deny the fundamentals of the faith. 'Do not be mixed up with them,' says the apostle Paul (see 2 Corinthians 6.14), 'Do not associate.' Full Bible references follow the article. This duty has become known as the doctrine of separation....

The question arises – how should evangelicals who obey God's call to stand apart treat fellow-evangelicals who refuse to do so? Should they maintain full fellowship, or stand apart from those who disobey? The latter is called secondary separation.

In the past, independent churches, Strict Baptist churches and Brethren assemblies in Britain have practically all held that secondary separation, often with great regret, is also our duty, but nowadays we hear pastors of such churches saying they do not believe in secondary separation. Some call it 'hyper-separation' and make it sound harsh and loveless. We have even heard it called 'the sin of schism'....

It should not be forgotten that the duty of separation, whether primary or secondary, is laid upon us in the Bible by the infinite kindness of God. Far from being loveless, it is a Gospel-preserving and a church-protecting duty. It is designed for our blessing and power. It is to keep us from a thousand snares and heartaches....

If a minister in an apostate denomination is knowingly, wilfully and actively cooperating with false teachers we should have no fellowship with him, but if such a man is grieved by his non-evangelical colleagues, remonstrating with them, witnessing to them, and declining cooperation with them, then we must respect him, and be charitable. Perhaps he has never considered his position. We should certainly recognise him as a brother, fellowship with him privately, pray for him and persuade him to leave that denomination if we can. However, we would be unable to share a platform with him, or ask him to preach for us, because that would endorse his apostate denomination and confuse God’s people. But we would not withdraw ourselves from him to the extent that we would from a wilfully disobedient evangelical minister who cooperates with his denominational false teachers….

"To prove the point we remember the way in which Dr Lloyd-Jones refused to work with Billy Graham, and this is a significant example of secondary separation. In 1963 the evangelist asked Dr Lloyd-Jones to chair the first World Congress on Evangelism (eventually held in Berlin in 1966; predecessor to Lausanne). Dr Lloyd-Jones told Billy Graham that if he would stop having liberals and Roman Catholics on his platform and drop the invitation system he would support and chair the Congress…."

"Billy Graham would not change his views, and Dr Lloyd-Jones declined to endorse or commend or work with him. No doubt the meeting between them was courteously conducted (it lasted three hours) but the outcome was a firm application of secondary separation. Dr Lloyd-Jones adopted the same attitude to Billy Graham's London crusades. He took the view, and stated it publicly, that to have visible unity with those who are opposed to essential matters of salvation was sinful. (He also believed the invitation system was a source of mass-delusion and harm to churches.)"

"In 2 John 11 we learn that the one who even expresses a blessing to a false teacher is a participant in his evil deeds. God assigns guilt to the non-separator, and we must not brush that aside."

The obligatory, insistent, imperative nature of the commands shown below, tells us how great a wrong it is to reject them, and why the principle of 2 Thessalonians 3.6 and 14 must take its course toward those who do. 

2 Corinthians 6.14-18
Galatians 1.8-9
Ephesians 5.11
Romans 16.17
2 John 6-11
2 Thessalonians 3.6 and 14
Titus 3.10
1 Timothy 1.18-20, 5.22, 6.3-5
2 Timothy 2.16-21
2 Timothy 3.5
2 Chronicles 19.2
Revelation 18.4

End quote.

I would just add that Billy Graham has made a thorough and clear claim that there are people saved and in Christ who don't even know it, nor have they heard the name of Jesus Christ nor His Gospel. This on it's own makes Billy Graham a false teacher and worthy of direct or primary separation.


 Peter Master's also wrote this in 2009:


What follows is a brief article published in the Sword & Trowel early in 1971, soon after the Metropolitan Tabernacle had seceded once again from the Baptist Union. It had done so before, in 1887, but in 1955 rejoined, during a ‘low’ period of the church. When the present pastor arrived at the Tabernacle in October 1970, the remaining members were fervent for secession, which was unanimously resolved at a church meeting held on 22nd February 1971....
Charles Haddon Spurgeon withdrew from the Union when he discovered that there was no basis of faith strong enough to restrict membership to evangelical believers. He was deeply grieved by the influx of modernists into the denomination. Today the position is far worse, as the denomination has been practically completely taken over by non-evangelicals.
Some evangelicals would say that we should stay in the Union to win it back. While we acknowledge this policy to be sincerely meant, it has never been successful whenever it has been tried in the history of the Christian Church. Once a religious denomination has gone into such serious decay that the majority of its members no longer believe the biblical faith, it has never been possible to save it.
More important still is the fact that God has told us what our course of action should be in this situation. We are not at liberty to use our human wisdom and say ‘we must remain in it – to win it’, for the Word of God has already bidden us to come out of it. (The same scriptures just quoted in connection with the ecumenical movement speak to us on this matter also.) Should we go on having fellowship with modernists; giving monetary support to liberalsand identifying our message with that of non-evangelicalsWe believe the Lord has clearly given us our instructions for Biblical Separation in his Word.
A further source of guidance to us has been the clear example of our Lord Jesus Christ in his dealings with the Jewish religious parties of his day (who believed more of the Bible than many of the modernistic Baptists with whom we are in fellowship)....


More here.


The Gospel and the Heart




"The Gospel makes nothing of man, and everything of Christ.
The Gospel comes to us on the assumption, or rather the fully demonstrated fact, that we are lost creatures—hopelessly, helplessly, irretrievably lost in ourselves. (Ephesians 2:1,12).
It comes unto us as those who are justly condemned by the holy Law of God, as those who are even now under the Divine curse, as those who are rushing headlong to eternal destruction. (John 3:18, Galatians 3:10-13).
The Gospel tells of the amazing provision which God has made for depraved and vile sinners. It announces the exceeding riches of grace unto those who are His inveterate enemies. It proclaims a full and perfect salvation for all who are willing to receive it (Romans 5:8, John 3:16).
It not only publishes a full pardon and deliverance from Hell (Colossians 1:13), but it promises eternal life and everlasting glory to all who believe its glad tidings and it offers these inestimable blessings freely, “without money and without price. (Revelation 22:17)."

~Arthur Pink, "An Evangelical Spirit"