MODERN DAY PROTESTANTISM AND ROMAN CATHOLICISM . . . WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE? . . . NOTHING!!!

 MODERN DAY PROTESTANTISM AND ROMAN CATHOLICISM . . . WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE? . . . NOTHING!!!

Prof D.J. Engelsma

In those days, Rome preached a salvation that had to be earned by man’s own works, as indeed it still preaches today; Rome taught that men were righteous before God, in part, by their own works, as indeed it still teaches today. In our day, the Protestant Churches teach and preach that salvation depends upon man’s own will; they proclaim that the sinner must achieve his own salvation by willing. This ‘gospel’ of much of Protestantism and the ‘gospel’ of Rome are one and the same. Essentially, there is no difference between them.

This is the reason why many Protestant Churches, preachers, evangelists and people find it possible to co-operate closely with the Roman Catholic Church, especially in the work of evangelism; and this is the reason why a great reunion with Rome on the part of many Protestants is in the offing. Rome says, ‘Salvation depends upon man working;’ modern Protestantism says, ‘Salvation depends upon man willing.’

Both are saying the same thing: ‘Salvation depends upon man.’ The apostle lumps both of these variations of the same basic doctrine together in Romans 9:16, and condemns them: ‘So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.

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IF YOU HAVE COMPROMISED, THE LORD DOESN’T THROW YOU OUT, BUT GIVES YOU A SECOND CHANCE TO TAKE A STAND FOR HIM

IF YOU HAVE COMPROMISED, THE LORD DOESN’T THROW YOU OUT, BUT GIVES YOU A SECOND CHANCE TO TAKE A STAND FOR HIM

The Lord is so faithful in chiding us when we are getting lukewarm or tending to compromise. If you remember . . . my Roman Catholic dad passed away a month ago and I did attend the funeral, because being his only child I felt it was only fair. But what is ‘fair’ is not necessarily God’s will! Especially when the Lord explicitly said, “Let the dead bury their dead: but go thou and preach the kingdom of God!” [Luke 9:60]

My dad remained a devout Roman Catholic to the very end, meaning he was a spiritually dead person and his relatives around him are all devout dead Roman Catholics like him. The right thing to do would have been to let the spiritually dead Roman Catholics bury my physically dead Roman Catholic dad! But sadly I compromised in order to stay in good books with my ‘relatives’. May the Lord forgive me!

But now the Lord is giving me another chance to take a stand and show my Roman Catholic relatives where I stand and what I think of their religion. Four days from now they are holding a Roman Catholic ‘Memorial Service’ for my dad and I have been invited. But this time I am not pussy-footing! Enough is enough! In fact just as I was writing this post my dad’s younger brother called me up from my hometown to confirm that I was coming for the ‘Memorial’, and I told him that I will not be attending this ‘Memorial service’ and WHY!

I told him that the religion which my dad and he belong to is the religion which I preach against with a passion! I have already lost many things and a major part of my life as a result of my Faith and stand for the Truth and I do not intend to compromise NOW!

My dad’s brother was upset and retorted, “But what will we say when people ask us why Mike didn’t come to the Memorial?” I said “Tell them that he couldn’t come because he is a Protestant like Luther was and he cannot sit in a prayer service where Roman Catholics are praying!”

Yes, my mom will be shattered and weep and many relatives will be greatly offended. But hey, “do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ!” [Gal 1:10]

Even Spurgeon saw SEPARATION as a biblical necessity for himself. He said “Whether others do so or not, I have felt the power of the text, ‘Come out from among them, and be ye separate,’ and have quitted both Union and Association once for all. This is forced upon me, not only by my convictions, but also by the experience of the UTTER USELESSNESS OF ATTEMPTING TO DEAL WITH THE EVIL EXCEPT BY PERSONALLY COMING OUT FROM IT”.

The bounden duty of a true believer towards men who profess to be ‘Christians’, and yet deny the Word of the Lord, and reject the fundamentals of the gospel, is to come out from among them. FELLOWSHIP WITH KNOWN AND VITAL ERROR IS PARTICIPATION IN SIN. To stay in a community which fellowships all beliefs in hope of setting matters right, is as though Abraham had stayed at Ur, or at Haran, in the hope of converting the household out of which he was called!

“Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial? or WHAT PART HATH HE THAT BELIEVETH WITH AN INFIDEL? . . . Wherefore COME OUT FROM AMONG THEM, AND BE YE SEPARATE, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be My sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty!” [2Cor 6:14-18]

I request you all to pray for me as I need strength in the inner man to continue as I once began. May the Lord who strengthened Peter after his denial strengthen me to take a bold stand for Him and be faithful to Him to the very end whatever the cost may be! So help me God!

Thy brother for whom Christ died!

Michael Jeshurun

HOLLYWOOD’S ARMINIAN IDEOLOGY

HOLLYWOOD’S ARMINIAN IDEOLOGY

Michael Jeshurun

It should come as no surprise that the Hollywood film industry is ‘Arminian’ in their beliefs as all the unregenerate are. But what even many true Christians have not noticed is that in most of their movies (even the seemingly good ones) they are pushing that Arminian Lie!

Fallen man hates the absolute Sovereignty of the mighty Jehovah with a passion and being led by the ‘Prince of the power of the air’ he cannot help but propagate lies that attack the truth of God’s Sovereignty and Man’s Total Depravity.

The movie under consideration is “Back to the Future” released back in 1985 and had two sequels to it – Part 2 and Part 3. It was a favorite amongst both the young and old and very interesting and humorous movie in all. To be honest it was one of MY ‘favorites’ before Christ saved me.

It was only after the Lord save me that I went back to reexamine some of the things which these movies were promoting and lo and behold they were not ‘innocent’ movies produced just for the sake of entertainment and profit. Like with all non-Christian media they were faithfully preaching Satan’s lie. And WHAT is Satan’s lie? The same as it was from the beginning – “Ye shall be as gods!” [Gen 3:5] Or as the wicked poem by William Ernest Henley – “Invictus” goes –

I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul. Etc . . .

The above meme is taken from the final scene of Part Three of the movie ‘Back to the Future’. And in this scene Marty’s girlfriend tells the scientist (Emmet Brown) who is the inventor of the ‘Time Machine’ (which the movie is all about) that she brought this note back from the future and now it was erased! To which the scientist retorts – “Of course it’s erased! It means your future hasn’t been written yet! No one’s has! Your future is whatever YOU make it! So make it a good one!”

Now that’s a Lie from the pit of Hell!

Your future is not “whatever YOU make it to be!” beloved, but whatever GOD has ordained for you!

The Patriarch confessed that God “performeth the thing that is appointed for me!” Our Lord told Peter “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, The cock shall not crow, till thou hast denied me thrice!” And so it was! And as our Lord rode into Jerusalem sitting upon a colt and the multitude cried out saying “Hosanna to the Son of David!” the Pharisees asked the Lord to rebuke them who so cried; to which our Lord replied – “if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out!”

Ever wondered why “the stones would cry out” if these held their peace? It was because IT WAS DETERMINED AND DECREED before time began that the Son of God would ride into Jerusalem on that particular day in that particular fashion and on His arrival that the people gathered around would rejoice and shout lauding Him –
“ Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: He is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.” [Zech 9:9]

Even the very betrayal and crucifixion of our Lord was no happenstance but a detailed unfolding of a predetermined decree! “Him, being delivered by THE DETERMINATE COUNSEL and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain!” [Acts 2:23]

And beloved these are not stray instances in Scripture which are so predetermined, but as Luther profoundly put it in his most excellent work “De Servo Arbitrio” (Free Will a Slave): “ALL THINGS whatsoever arise from, and depend upon, THE DIVINE APPOINTMENTS, whereby it was preordained who should receive the Word of Life, and who should disbelieve it, who should be delivered from their sins, and who should be hardened in them, who should be justified and who should be condemned. This is the very truth which razes the doctrine of freewill from its foundations, to wit, that God’s eternal love of some men and hatred of others is immutable and cannot be reversed!”

Let there be no misunderstanding here, even though God has ordained or ‘appointed’ the destinies of men, yet is He not the inducer of their evil nor the author of their sin! When fallen man is tempted or sins THE ONUS IS ALWAYS ON HIS OWN HEAD! “every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of HIS OWN LUST, and enticed.” [James 1:14]

Take the case of Judas for instance: Almost all the sound theologians whom we know hold that it is clear from Scripture that God DECREED from all eternity that Judas should betray the Lord Jesus. If anyone should challenge this statement let them refer to the prophecy of Zechariah through whom God declared that His Son should be sold for “thirty pieces of silver” (Zech. 11:12). In prophecy God makes known what WILL BE, and in making known what will be He is but revealing to us what He has ORDAINED SHALL BE.

That Judas was the one through whom the prophecy of Zechariah was fulfilled needs not to be argued. But now the question we have to face is, Was Judas a RESPONSIBLE AGENT in fulfilling this decree of God? In other words did the ‘decree’ of God force Judas to do something he never intended to or did he act according to his own evil schemes?

We reply that Judas was FULLY responsible for his betrayal and the liability for his act is on his own head! Responsibility attaches mainly to the MOTIVE and INTENTION of the one committing the act. This is recognized on every hand. Human law distinguishes between a blow inflicted by accident (without evil design) and a blow delivered with ‘MALICE AFORETHOUGHT.’

Apply then this same principle to the case of Judas. What was the DESIGN of his heart when he bargained with the priests? Manifestly he had no conscious desire to FULFILL any ‘decree of God’, though UNKNOWN TO HIMSELF HE WAS ACTUALLY DOING SO. On the contrary, HIS INTENTION was evil only, and therefore, though God had decreed and directed his act, nevertheless HIS OWN EVIL INTENTION rendered him justly GUILTY as he afterwards acknowledged himself-“I have BETRAYED innocent blood.”

It’s the same with the Crucifixion of our Lord. Scripture plainly declares that He was “delivered BY THE DETERMINATE COUNSEL and foreknowledge of God” (Acts 2:23), and that though “the kings of the earth stood up, and the rulers were gathered together against the Lord, and against His Christ” yet, notwithstanding it was but “to do whatsoever Thy hand and Thy counsel DETERMINED BEFORE TO BE DONE” (Acts 4:26, 28); which verses teach very much more than a bare PERMISSION BY GOD, declaring, as they do, that the Crucifixion and all its details had been DECREED BY GOD. Yet, nevertheless, it was by “wicked hands,” not merely “human hands” that our Lord was “crucified and slain” (Acts 2:23). “Wicked” because the intention of His crucifiers was only evil.

To summarize: in all his actions fallen man acts responsibly and freely, even though in that action HE FULFILLS THE PREDESTINED WILL OF GOD!

Those who try to assert that Judas or for that matter the Pharaoh in Moses’ day were not ‘predestined’ to do all that they did . . . . do so because they REJECT THE TRUTH OF SOVEREIGN REPROBATION! This is the case even with many who deem themselves ‘Calvinists’. Reprobation is too thorny a subject for them to handle and so they either try to explain it away of just altogether plain ignore it!

But thank God that God has always had His faithful servants who preached this unpalatable truth!

So . . . is the ‘future’ whatever YOU make it to be? No sir! The future whether you’re a ‘saint’ or an ‘ain’t’ is what GOD ORDAINED IT TO BE TO BE FROM THE CRADLE TO THE GRAVE!

“But He is in one mind, and who can turn Him? and what His soul desireth, even that He doeth. For He performeth the thing that is appointed for me: and many such things are with Him. Therefore am I troubled at His presence: when I consider, I am afraid of Him!” [Job 23 :13-15] Hallelujah!

see also –
https://michaeljeshurun.wordpress.com/…/there-is-no-middle…/

RAVI ZACHARIAS AN ENEMY OF SOVEREIGN GRACE!

RAVI ZACHARIAS AN ENEMY OF SOVEREIGN GRACE!

Michael Jeshurun

I would personally advise my brothers to stay away from Ravi Zacharias! The man is an Arminian trying to please both Calvinists and Arminians! Here is a quote from him –

“If you read Romans 5, you will find out that even though God called Abraham, it was the faith of Abraham that justified him. Once again you see the sovereignty and responsibility. Why don’t we leave this enigma within the divine mind and just be grateful for the privilege that we have heard His voice and we can turn and follow Him?

May I strongly recommend that you pick up the book written by J. I. Packer, Evangelism and the Sovereignty of God. His introductory comments alone, dealing with the difference between a contradiction and a paradox, are well done. If God were absolutely sovereign, then it would be a contradiction to say that man is absolutely free. God is not absolutely sovereign to the point that He can call something that is not as if it actually were. For example, God cannot make squares into circles. That would be a contradiction. So absolute sovereignty is really not what is being talked about here. God, therefore, has chosen to give us the option and, within that framework, He cannot call us free while absolutely violating that freedom. Both poles exist–His sovereignty and our responsibility. We rest on the fact that God is just, that God is love, that God is good, and He woos us enough so that we may trust Him and yet gives us enough freedom so that we might know that this freedom cannot be transformed into coercion.”

Read that again, “God, therefore, has chosen to give us the option and, within that framework, He cannot call us free while absolutely violating that freedom. . . . . even though God called Abraham, it was the faith of Abraham that justified him.” Any man who makes a statement such as this has not understood the Gospel! Reminds me of some Arminians who a little while ago were trying to assert that Noah was not actually saved by Grace but by his obedience or rather his works!

Ravi Zacharias says, “He (God) cannot call us free while absolutely violating that freedom” Really? Hey, God never called us ‘free’ in the first place! Martin Luther wrote a whole volume on the ‘Bondage of the human will’. And incidentally God does violate man’s so called freedom when he regenerates him without his consent! Ravi should go read John 1:13 and learn what that meaneth! God does also ‘violate’ man’s so called freedom when He makes him willing in the Day of His power! [Psalm 110:3]

Ravi Zacharias’ position pleases all nominal Christian goats. That should be very clear from the crowds Ravi commands. But if you have an ‘unction from the Holy One’ and are “proving all things” spoken in Christ’s Name you will right away see the error and the compromise! When men say that it was the faith of Abraham which justified him or the obedience of Noah which saved him they are clearly implying that both faith and obedience are within man’s power to render them. We have written much on this and I will not labor to prove them here for lack of time and space. But please always be wary of those who say that the Bible speaks of both God’s Sovereignty and man’s responsibility and leave it there.

If a preacher speaks of ‘man’s responsibility’ and does not go on to insist and prove that that responsibility can only be rendered by God’s enabling, then he is robbing God of His glory no matter how eloquently he may be preaching!

And for the record there is no such thing as a ‘neutral’ when it comes to Soteriology (study of Salvation). There are many Youtubes and articles on the web explaining WHY Ravi Zacharias rejects Calvinism (search and see) and in rejecting Calvinism or the Reformed Faith he is in truth rejecting the Gospel! Period!

You are either an Arminian or a Calvinist! You either believe that Salvation is ALL OF GOD, or you believe that it is partly of God and partly of man!

There is NO MIDDLE GROUND!

Those who pretend that they are neither Arminians nor “Calvinists” like Ravi Zacharias are in reality hypocrites! They suppose that they are neutral! But in matters pertaining to the doctrines of Soteriology (salvation) there are NO NEUTRALS!

NOBODY IS NEUTRAL! EVERYBODY HAS A BIAS FOR OR AGAINST! You’re either a capitalist or a communist. You’re either a conservative or a liberal–a rightist or a leftist–right or wrong! Nothing short of right is right. There is no such thing as neutrality on anything. Even a battery has only two poles, positive and negative, and you cannot get them together without fireworks! No battery has neutral poles: You’re either alive or dead, hot or cold!

Oh, the neutral is always so fair! “I can see BOTH sides.” The Liar! THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS BOTH SIDES! Only ONE side can be right and only ONE side can be wrong, so in claiming to be neutral and pretending to see right and wrong on both sides, the neutral puts himself above everybody.

He is the most righteous of all. He can see how everybody’s a little bit wrong but him and he is the only one right–the only one who really sees the truth, which he claims is somewhere in-between, which makes him the worst liar and most treacherous enemy of all! As Jesus said “He that is not for Me is against Me, and he that gathereth not with Me scattereth abroad.” [Matt 12;30]

You either believe fallen man is totally depraved and CANNOT come to God of his own ‘free-will’ or you don’t! [John 6;44]

You either believe God has elected a CERTAIN NUMBER and sovereignly ordained them to eternal life or you don’t! [Acts 13:48]

You either believe that Christ laid down His life FOR THE SHEEP and them alone, as he said He did, or you don’t! [John 10:15]

You either believe that the Holy Spirit DRAWS God’s chosen by an IRRESISTIBLE POWER or you don’t! [Jer 31:3]
And finally you either believe Christ saves FULLY AND FINALLY those whom He died for unto the end or you don’t! [Heb 7:25]

There is no MIDDLE GROUND HERE!

Here’s a quote from the beloved Spurgeon – “I have my own opinion that there is no such thing as preaching Christ and Him crucified, unless we preach what nowadays is called Calvinism. It is a nickname to call it Calvinism; Calvinism is the gospel, and nothing else. I do not believe we can preach the gospel if we do not preach justification by faith without works; nor unless we preach the sovereignty of God in His dispensation of grace; nor unless we exalt the electing unchangeable eternal, immutable, conquering love of Jehovah; nor do I think we can preach the gospel unless we base it upon the special and particular redemption of His elect and chosen people which Christ wrought out upon the cross. (Charles Spurgeon, The New Park Street Pulpit, Vol. 1, 1856).

(This is not a debate or discussion! Any comments defending Ravi Zacharias will be promptly deleted! Thank you!)

 

WHEN GOD CALLS YOU, HE DOESN’T WAIT FOR YOU TO ‘RESPOND’; BUT DRAGS YOU TO HIMSELF!

WHEN GOD CALLS YOU, HE DOESN’T WAIT FOR YOU TO ‘RESPOND’; BUT DRAGS YOU TO HIMSELF!

Michael Jeshurun

“Blessed is the man whom THOU CHOOSEST, and CAUSEST to approach unto thee, that he may dwell in Thy courts”! [Psa 65:4]

Watch carefully, that God not only ‘CHOOSES’ but ‘CAUSES’ the one chosen ‘TO APPROACH’ Him. In other words, or in the words of our Lord “DRAGS HIM’ to Himself!

“No man can come to Me, except the Father which hath sent Me DRAW him”! [John 6:44] The word ‘DRAW’ in the Greek literally means to DRAG! Its first occurrence is here in John 6:44. Here it is the power of God overcoming the enmity of the carnal mind. It occurs again in John 18:10 –

“Then Simon Peter having a sword DREW it, and smote the high priest’s servant.”

Here the term signifies that Peter laid FIRM HOLD of his sword and PULLED IT OUT of its sheath. It is found again in John 21:6, 11, “Simon Peter went up and DREW the net to land full of great fishes.” Here it signifies the putting forth of strength so as to DRAG AN INANIMATE AND HEAVY OBJECT. It is used (in a slightly different form) in James 2:6, “Do not rich men oppress you and DRAW YOU before the judgment seats?” Here it has reference to the IMPELLING OF UNWILLING subjects.

Hence from its usage in the New Testament we are therefore obliged to understand that fallen man if he is to ‘come to God’ at all, he MUST BE DRAWN OR DRAGGED BY THE POWER OF OMNIPOTENCE! In raising the sinner from spiritual death to eternal life God employs the same power which He put forth in raising Christ from the dead! [Eph 2:4-6]

This is why when the apostles exclaimed – “WHO then can be saved”? The Lord replied – “With MEN IT IS IMPOSSIBLE, but not with God: for WITH GOD ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE”! [Mark 10:27] Hallelujah!

But it is a known fact that God the Father does not draw EVERYONE to Christ! WHY?!

BECAUSE HE DOES NOT LOVE EVERYONE!

The love of the father is a DISCRIMINATIVE love! It CHOOSES whom to love and whom to hate. “Jacob have I loved, Esau have I hated”! [Rom 9:13]

In the same line He chooses on whom He will have mercy and whom He will harden! [Rom 9:18]

If God was dealing with a bunch of ‘INNOCENT’ men and women this would seem unjust! But God is dealing with a fallen bunch of God haters who are His enemies (Rom 5:10), and if there is anything He owes them it is HELL!

So out of this ‘Hell-Deserving’ bunch or ‘lump’ He chooses to display His UNCONDITIONAL MERCY on some and the rest He ordains to eternal damnation which they rightly deserve!

These are the facts! You’ve got to put it in your pipe and smoke it whether you like it or not!

If the Father was choosing everyone and drawing everyone as some suppose, then, scriptures like these make no sense –
“Blessed is the man whom Thou choosest, and causest to approach unto thee, that he may dwell in Thy courts”! [Psa 65:4]

Notice that these few whom the Father loves, He not only ‘CHOOSES’, but ‘CAUSES’ to approach unto Him!

Fallen man is so depraved that just ‘choosing him’ is not going to save him!! God must ‘CAUSE’ him to approach!
In other words, the Father must not only choose or elect those whom He loves, but He must DRAW them to Christ!

And He does not draw ALL, because He has not chosen ALL. And He has not chosen ALL, because He has not loved ALL!

I have loved you, saith the LORD. Yet ye say, “Wherein hast Thou loved us”? Was not Esau Jacob’s BROTHER? saith the LORD: YET I LOVED JACOB, AND I HATED ESAU, and laid his mountains and his heritage waste for the dragons of the wilderness”! [Malachi 1:2,3]

HOW do I know that God loves ME and that I am one of His elect?

Why, I look around me and see so many of my own family who are morally better off than me, who are either lost in unbelief or in a false religion, and that God has loved me and DRAWN ME to Himself and taught me truths which ‘angels desire to look into’ [1Pet 1:12], by this I KNOW I am one of His elect!

“The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: THEREFORE with loving kindness have I DRAWN THEE”! [Jer 31:3] Hallelujah!

EFFECTUAL CALLING

EFFECTUAL CALLING

“Effectual calling is the middle link in the undividable chain of salvation. He that hath it is sure of both ends, his past predestination to life and his future glorification. Our calling is the manifestation of our election, and a sure forerunner of glory, being in effect, the voice of God telling us beforehand that He will glorify us.” – William Cowper (1774) 

This is the same brother who penned the hymn –

GOD MOVES IN A MYSTERIOUS WAY

God moves in a mysterious way
His wonders to perform;
He plants His footsteps in the sea
And rides upon the storm.

Deep in unfathomable mines
Of never failing skill
He treasures up His bright designs
And works His sov’reign will.

Ye fearful saints, fresh courage take;
The clouds ye so much dread
Are big with mercy and shall break
In blessings on your head.

Judge not the Lord by feeble sense,
But trust Him for His grace;
Behind a frowning providence
He hides a smiling face.

His purposes will ripen fast,
Unfolding every hour;
The bud may have a bitter taste,
But sweet will be the flow’r.

Blind unbelief is sure to err
And scan His work in vain;
God is His own interpreter,
And He will make it plain.

Praise the Lord!

 

BEFORE YOU TRY TO REACH THE ‘LOST’ IN AFRICA, TRY AND REACH YOUR KIDS AT HOME

BEFORE YOU TRY TO REACH THE ‘LOST’ IN AFRICA, TRY AND REACH YOUR KIDS AT HOME

compiled by Michael Jeshurun

Spend time with your child when you can because one of these days you will say either “I wish I had” or “I’m glad I did!”

Children don’t need your presents but they need your presence!

In the end kids won’t remember that fancy toy or game you bought them, but they’ll remember the time you spent with them.

To be in your children’s memories tomorrow, you have to be in their lives today.

Spending time with your child is one thing you’ll never regret in life.

Time is the most valuable gift a father can give to his children!

“What the mother sings to the cradle goes all the way down to the coffin.”

You can always make more money . . . but you can’t get back time!

Save the excuses! It’s not about “having” time. It’s about “making” time. If it matters you will make the time!

The best toy a child can have is a parent who can get down on the floor and play with them.

If you haven’t taught your children the Word of God and pointed them to the Lord Jesus Christ . . . . you really haven’t taught them anything worth mentioning! – M.J.

OF DAUGHTERS AND GANGSTERS

OF DAUGHTERS AND GANGSTERS

There’s nothing like being a father to a little girl. A daughter can turn the hardest man into the world’s biggest softy. A dude could be a straight up gangster, but around his little girl he becomes a teddy bear. Daughters are angels sent from heaven.

GOATS AREN’T LOST, ONLY SHEEP ARE!

GOATS AREN’T LOST, ONLY SHEEP ARE!

Many sincere preachers go around trying to convince people that they are ‘lost’. Fact is that most of them aren’t ‘lost’ for they are Goats; and the Sheep of God who are truly lost do not know that they are lost until the Spirit regenerates them! “I once was lost but now am found” can only be sung in sincerity by a sheep that’s been found! Here’s a good meditation by the beloved Spurgeon along the same lines – 

GOD SAVES MEN THAT DO NOT SEEK HIM

C.H. Spurgeon

If any man be saved, he is saved by Divine grace, and BY DIVINE GRACE ALONE; and the reason of his salvation is NOT TO BE FOUND IN HIM, BUT IN GOD. 

We are not saved as the result of anything that WE DO or that we will; but we will and do as the result of God’s good pleasure, and the work of His grace in our hearts. No sinner can prevent God; that is, he cannot go before Him, cannot anticipate Him; GOD IS ALWAYS FIRST IN THE MATTER OF SALVATION. He is before our convictions, before our desires, before our fears, before our hopes. All that is good or ever will be good in us, is preceded by the grace of God, and is the effect of a Divine cause within.

Now in speaking of God’s gracious acts of salvation, this morning, I notice first, that they are entirely UNMERITED. You will see that the people here mentioned certainly did not merit God’s grace. They found him, BUT THEY NEVER SOUGHT FOR HIM; he was made manifest to them, but THEY NEVER ASKED FOR HIM.

THERE NEVER WAS A MAN SAVED YET WHO MERITED IT.

Ask all the saints of God, and they will tell you that their former life was spent in the lusts of the flesh; that in the days of their ignorance, they revolted against God and turned back from his ways, that when they were invited to come to Him THEY DESPISED THE INVITATION, AND, WHEN WARNED, CAST THE WARNING BEHIND THEIR BACK. They will tell you that their being drawn by God, was not the result of any merit before conversion; for some of them, so far from having any merit, WERE THE VERY VILEST OF THE VILE: they plunged into the very kennel of sin; they were not ashamed of all the things of which it would be a shame for us to speak; they were RINGLEADERS IN CRIME, very princes in the ranks of the enemy; and YET sovereign grace came to them, and they were brought to know the Lord.

They will tell you that it was not the result of ANYTHING GOOD IN THEIR DISPOSITION, for although they trust that there is now something excellent implanted in them, yet in the days of their flesh they could see no one quality which was not perverted to the service of Satan. Ask them whether they think they were chosen of God because of their courage; they will tell you, no; if they had courage it was defaced, for they were COURAGEOUS TO DO EVIL. Question them whether they were chosen of God because of their talent; they will tell you, no; they had that talent, but THEY PROSTITUTED IT TO THE SERVICE OF SATAN. Question them whether they were chosen because of the openness and generosity of their disposition; they will tell you that that very openness of temper, and that very generosity of disposition, led them to plunge deeper into the depths of sin, than they otherwise would have done, for they were “hail fellow, well met,” with every evil man, and ready to drink and join every jovial party which should come in their way. There was in them NO REASON WHATEVER why God should have mercy upon them, and THE WONDER TO THEM IS THAT HE DID NOT CUT THEM DOWN IN THE MIDST OF THEIR SINS, BLOT OUT THEIR NAMES FROM THE BOOK OF LIFE, AND SWEEP THEM INTO THE GULF WHERE THE FIRE BURNETH. THAT SHALL DEVOUR THE WICKED.

But some have said that God chooses His people because He foresees that after he chooses them, they will do this, that, and the other, which shall be meritorious and excellent. Refer again to the people of God, and they will tell you that since their conversion they have had much to weep over. Although they can rejoice that God has begun the good work in them, THEY OFTEN TREMBLE LEST IT SHOULD NOT BE GOD’S WORK AT ALL. They will tell you that if they are abundant in faith yet THERE ARE TIMES WHEN THEY ARE SUPERABUNDANT IN UNBELIEF; that if sometimes they are full of works of holiness, yet there are times when they weep many tears to think that those very acts of holiness were stained with sin. The Christian will tell you that he weeps over his very tears; he feels that THERE IS FILTH EVEN IN THE BEST OF DESIRES; THAT HE HAS TO PRAY TO GOD TO FORGIVE HIS PRAYERS, FOR THERE IS SIN IN THE MIDST OF HIS SUPPLICATIONS, and that he has to sprinkle even his best offerings with the atoning blood, for he never else can bring an offering without spot or blemish.

You shall appeal to the brightest saint, to the man whose presence in the midst of society is like the presence of an angel, and he will tell you that he is still ashamed of himself. “Ah!” he will say, “you may praise me, but I cannot praise myself, you speak well of me, you applaud me, but if you knew my heart you would see abundant reason to think of me as a poor sinner saved by grace, who hath nothing whereof to glory, and must bow his head and confess his iniquities in the sight of God.”

GRACE, THEN IS ENTIRELY UNMERITED.

Again, the grace of God is SOVEREIGN. By that word we mean that God has an absolute right to GIVE THAT GRACE WHERE HE CHOOSES, and to WITHHOLD IT WHEN HE PLEASES. HE IS NOT BOUND TO GIVE IT TO ANY MAN, MUCH LESS TO ALL MEN; and if He chooses to give it to one man and not to another, His answer is, “Is thine eye evil because mine eye is good? Can I not do as I will with mine own? I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy.” Now, I want you to notice the sovereignty of Divine grace as illustrated in the text: “I was found of them that sought Me not, I was made manifest to them that asked not after Me.” You would imagine that if God gave His grace to any He would wait until he found them earnestly seeking Him. You would imagine that God in the highest heavens would say, “I have mercies, but I will leave men alone, and when they feel their need of these mercies and seek Me diligently with their whole heart, day and night, with tears, and vows, and supplications, then will I bless them, but not before.”

But, beloved, God saith no such thing. It is true He doth bless them that cry unto Him, but He blesses them before they cry, for their cries are not their OWN CRIES, BUT CRIES WHICH HE HAS PUT INTO THEIR LIPS; their desires are not of their own growth, but desires which He has cast like good seed into the soil of their hearts.

GOD SAVES THE MEN THAT DO NOT SEEK HIM.

Oh, wonder of wonders! It is mercy indeed when God saves a seeker; but how much greater mercy when He seeks the lost himself! Mark the parable of Jesus Christ concerning the lost sheep; it does not run thus: “A certain man had a hundred sheep, and one of them did go astray. And he tarried at home, and lo, the sheep came back, and he received it joyfully and said to his friends, rejoice, for the sheep that I have lost is come back.” NO; he WENT AFTER the sheep: it never would have come after Him; it would have wandered farther and farther away. He went after it; over hills of difficulty, down valleys of despondency He pursued its wandering feet, and at last He laid hold of it; He did not drive it before him, He did not lead it, but He carried it himself all the way, and when He brought it home He did not say, THE SHEEP IS COME BACK,” BUT, “I HAVE FOUND THE SHEEP WHICH WAS LOST.”

MEN DO NOT SEEK GOD FIRST; GOD SEEKS THEM FIRST; AND IF ANY OF YOU ARE SEEKING HIM TO-DAY IT IS BECAUSE HE HAS FIRST SOUGHT YOU.

If you are desiring him He desired you first, and your good desires and earnest seeking will not be the CAUSE of your salvation, but the EFFECTS of previous grace given to you. “Well,” says another, “I should have thought that although the Saviour might not require an earnest seeking and sighing and groaning, and a continuous searching, after Him, yet certainly He would have desired and demanded that every man, before he had grace, should ask for it.” That, indeed, beloved, seems natural, and God will give grace to them that ask for it; but mark, the text says that he was manifested “to them that asked not for Him.” That is to say, BEFORE we ask, God gives us grace.

THE ONLY REASON WHY ANY MAN EVER BEGINS TO PRAY IS BECAUSE GOD HAS PUT PREVIOUS GRACE IN HIS HEART WHICH LEADS HIM TO PRAY.

I remember, when I was converted to God, I WAS AN ARMINIAN THOROUGHLY. I thought I had begun the good work myself, and I used sometimes to sit down and think, “Well, I sought the Lord four years before I found him,” and I think I began to compliment myself upon the fact that I had perseveringly entreated of Him in the midst of much discouragement. But one day the thought struck me, “How was it you came to seek God?” and in an instant the answer came from my soul, “Why, because He led me to do it; He must first have shown me my need of Him, or else I should never have sought Him; He must have shown me His preciousness, or I never should have thought Him worth seeking;” and AT ONCE I SAW THE DOCTRINES OF GRACE AS CLEAR AS POSSIBLE.

GOD MUST BEGIN. Nature can never rise above itself. You put water into a reservoir, and it will rise as high as that, but no higher if let alone. Now, IT IS NOT IN HUMAN NATURE TO SEEK THE LORD. HUMAN NATURE IS DEPRAVED, and therefore, there must be the extraordinary pressure of the Holy Spirit put upon the heart to lead us first to ask for mercy. But mark, we do not know any thing about that, while the Spirit is operating; we find that out AFTERWARDS. We ask as much as if we were asking all of ourselves. Our business is to seek the Lord as if there were no Holy Spirit at all. But although we do not know it, there must always be a previous motion of the Spirit in our heart, before there will be a motion of our heart towards Him.

[Read the full sermon – http://www.spurgeon.org/sermons/0207.htm ]

HAVE YOU THANKED GOD FOR YOUR BATHROOM?

HAVE YOU THANKED GOD FOR YOUR BATHROOM?

“According as His divine power hath given unto us (or provided for us) all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that hath called us to glory and virtue.” [2 Peter 1:3]

A bathroom with running water may not seem much to you, but if you are from a ‘third world country’ where many are deprived of this luxury, then maybe you’ll thank the Lord even for the toilet and bathing privacy He has provided for you!

An old song says: “Count your blessings, name them one by one, and it will surprise you what the Lord has done.”

It’s easy to lose perspective. We all face challenges and difficulties in life. And if we are not on guard, they can divert our attention from all the Lord has done for us.

Yes, you may face obstacles, but you need to remember the man who complained that he had no shoes till he saw a man who had no feet.

We may not have everything we would like, but we all have something to be thankful for.

Your children may be a challenge, but at least you have children.

Your spouse may tempt you to pull your hair out, but there are millions who would gladly trade places with you.

Your boss may be ruthless, but there are many in the world who would literally give anything to have any job so they could feed their family.

Your attitude is determined by your focus. When you focus on the negative — you turn negative, making your life, and those around you, miserable.

It is amazing how different you feel after taking just a few minutes to truly thank God for what you have.

I can read! I can see! I can smell! I can hear! I can talk! I can think! God loves me! Jesus died for me! I have a home in Heaven!

Say from your heart: “Thank you Lord for every blessing You have provided for me!”

Love
Michael Jeshurun