Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Darwin's Answer To Abiogenesis

God did it!

Question now is... What does God require of thee oh man?

Friday, December 11, 2009

Are You Living For Rubbish?

"Do not work for food that perishes--but for food that endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give you!" John 6:27

We need to be continually reminded of the unsatisfying nature of the things of this world--and exhorted to seek eternal realities. We live in a material age, when the quest of people is for money, for power, for things of the earth.

John Bunyan gives a picture of 'a man with a muck-rake', working hard, scraping up the rubbish at his feet--and not seeing the crown which hung above his head. It is a picture of the great majority of the people in this world. They are wearing out their life in scraping up worldly rubbish--not thinking of the heavenly treasures, the divine and imperishable gifts, which they might have--with half the toil and care!

We ought not to spend our life in picking up rubbish which we cannot carry beyond the grave! If we are wise, we will seek rather to gather lasting treasures and riches, which we can take with us into eternity!

Whatever we build into our character, we shall possess forever!

Money which we spend in doing good in Christ's name--we lay up as safe and secure treasure in heaven.

All true service for Christ--stores up rewards for us in the future.

What we keep--we lose!

What we give in love--we keep forever!

(J.R. Miller)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Spurgeon On Self Righteousness #2

If you think yourselves strong enough to procure heaven by your own efforts, you are ignorantly insulting the cross of Christ, for you seem to insinuate that your virtues can avail you without Jesus. If you really mean this, there is no more venom of rebellion against God in your self-righteousness than in the outward vice of those who make no pretence to godliness. For you to put your works in the place of Jesus is a blasphemy against the Saviour's blood and righteousness. Why needed Christ to die if men could save themselves? Why need he bleed upon the cross if your merits will suffice to gain you a place among the blessed? There is a fatal weakness in the claim of that man who thinks himself strong enough to force his own passage to the throne of God; that weakness lies in the pride which insults the Crucified, the disloyalty which prefers itself to the royal Saviour.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Spurgeon On Self Righteousness #1

Sinner, if you grow no sweeter flowers than the dunghill of your own nature can nourish, you will die amid poisonous weeds. If you never drink of better water than the filthy well of your own heart will yield, you will perish of thirst, or of a deadly draught. Another, and a better helper than one born in your house, must come this way. Help must be laid upon one that is mighty, exalted of the Lord out of the people, and endowed with divine power and Godhead, for only such a Saviour, infinitely good and great, can save a soul so lost as yours.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Sunday, November 22, 2009

A Question For The Evolutionist...

Did this evolve, or is it evidence that there is a sand castle maker?

Did this evolve, or is it evidence that there is a bridge maker?

Did this evolve, or is it evidence that there is a robot maker?

Did we evolve, or are we evidence that there is a creator?

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

No Surer Test Of The Genuineness Of Christian Life!

"I am among you as one who serves." Luke 22:27

"He got up from supper, laid aside His robe, took a towel, and tied it around Himself. Next, He poured water into a basin and began to wash His disciples’ feet and to dry them with the towel tied around Him." John 13:4-5

Serving is not an easy lesson to learn. But it is a lesson we must learn--if ever we would become like our Master. He did not come to be served--but to serve. He served to the uttermost, just as He loved to the uttermost. Anything that needed to be done for another, He did as naturally and as simply as He breathed. He loved people, and was interested in them, and was ready always to be helpful to them. It never mattered what the service was, whether it was the saving of a soul, the curing of a grievous sickness, or the giving of a cup of water--He did the least as graciously and as divinely, as the greatest.

The washing of feet was the lowliest service any man could do for another. It was the work of the lowliest slave. Yet Jesus without hesitation, did this service for His own disciples. Thus He taught them that nothing anyone may ever need to have done--is unfit for the whitest hands. We begin to be like Christ--only when we begin to love others enough to serve them.

There is no surer test of the genuineness of Christian life, than in this matter of serving others. When we see the Son of God washing His disciples' feet--no service is too menial for us to do. A king may do the lowliest kindness to the poorest peasant in his realm, and his honor will only be enhanced by it.

"Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet--you also should wash one another's feet." John 13:14

J. R. Miller

Friday, October 30, 2009

Evolution Is Monkey Business!

How long would it take a monkey to type the word evolution on a standard 104-key keyboard?

Well there is, on average, one chance in 1,423,311,812,421,484,544 attempts (an attempt being defined as a random keying of 9 characters), of typing the word evolution on a 104-key keyboard. This is based on the Multiplication Rule of probability.

Assuming the monkey could type 2 keystrokes/sec, 8 hrs/day, 5 days/week, 44 weeks/year (that's a 52 weeks year - 4 weeks annual leave - 2 weeks public holidays - 2 weeks sick leave) and he stumbled on the right key combination, by chance, in only half the attempts then it would only take him 505,437,433,388.31 years.

Unfortunately, he would have died after about 20!

Such are the overwhelming odds of randomly typing the nine character word coined to describe the very theory which says all things evolved from a primordial soup, it would take 25,271,871,669.42 monkeys working back to back to crack this problem!

God Is The God Of The Broken!

"This man welcomes sinners--and eats with them!" Luke 15:2

"I tell you the truth, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you!" Matthew 21:31

Christ is building His kingdom with earth's broken things.

Men want only the strong, the successful, the victorious, the unbroken--in building their kingdoms. But God is the God of the broken, the unsuccessful, of those who have failed. Heaven is filling with earth's broken lives, and there is no 'bruised reed' which Christ cannot take and restore to glorious blessedness and beauty. He can take the life crushed by pain or sorrow--and make it into a harp whose music shall be all praise. He can lift earth's saddest failure--up to heaven's glory!

J. R. Miller

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Why I Don't Believe In God!

Mr & Mrs Atheist, I am curious as to your reason(s) for why you do not believe there is a God?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

A Question For Mr Evolutionist!

Mr Evolutionist, assuming that you propagate before you die, what great genetic improvement or evolutionary advancement will you bring to the human gene pool? Have you improved on the eyesight or hearing of your parents? Have you developed some new biological function that gives you a greater chance of survival? Have you moved your family tree one step closer to developing gills, or flying with the birds? How do you know that you haven’t actually made a regressive step back towards your primate ancestors? What a waste your life will be if you reach the end and find out that you have added no new &/or improved genetic information! You will be an evolutionary failure!

Monday, October 19, 2009

The Atheist Challenge!

1. Put frog in blender
2. Blend frog
3. Put blender on kitchen table
4. Wait for frog to hop back out

Should be a no brainer for evolution - given that we know everything required to make a living frog is present.

My dear atheist friend, don't hold your breath!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Degrees Of Sin?

The greek word for sin "ἁμαρτία" literally means to miss the mark. To miss the target. But the problem is we don't realise how far we miss it!

Imagine for a moment if our target were the sun! At an approximate distance of 149,598,000 km away, if we were off course by just 1 degree, we'd miss the mark by around 2,611,242 kilometres. That's a little over 65 round trips of the earth!

But we know that the target, the requirement for us to approach God in infinite holiness is infinite perfection! Perfect righteousness! Now if we were to miss that, even by one degree, we'd miss the mark by an infinite number of miles. In terms of being off course, that's seriously lost!

Let us then not trifle over the degrees of sin! "For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it." James 2:10

One degree of separation is still separation after all!

Since we cannot make it on our own, give up trying! Flee to the only one who can save you and throw yourself at his feet. Cast yourself upon his mercy, for he promised to save to the upmost all who come to him! He lived a sinless life! He satisfied all the requirements of the law! He hit the mark!

There was no cause for death found in him, yet he was crucified. Crucified in the place of all those who would put their trust in him! All those who would give up trying to hit the mark themselves! All those who would flee to him for salvation!

Repent! Turn from your striving, turn from your unbelief, turn from your sin – turn to the only one who can save you! Turn to Christ!

You will never make it otherwise! You cannot make it otherwise!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Don't Look To Yourself!

"It is not the healthy who need a doctor--but the sick!" Matthew 9:12

From the garden of Gethsemane--where the bleeding pores of the Savior sweat pardons; from the cross of Calvary--where the bleeding hands of Jesus drop mercy--the cry comes, "Look unto Me, and be saved, all the ends of the earth!" From Calvary's summit, where Jesus cries, "It is finished!" I hear a shout, "Look unto Me, and be saved!"

But there comes a vile cry from our soul, "No, look to yourself! Look to yourself!" Ah, look to yourself--and you will certainly be damned! As long as you look to yourself--there is no hope for you. It is not a consideration of what you are--but a consideration of what Christ is, that can save you. You must look away from yourself, and to Jesus!

Oh! there are many who quite misunderstand the gospel; they think that their good works qualify them to come to Christ; whereas SIN is the only qualification for man to come to Jesus!

"It is not the healthy who need a doctor--but the sick!" Matthew 9:12

- Charles Spurgeon

Friday, October 2, 2009

Sad, But Mostly True!

"After more than twenty years of dealing with church members on a daily basis, I am of the following opinion. Of every one thousand members of a Protestant or Fundamental church, three hundred are Christian in word only and could not give a scriptural definition of salvation if their life depended on it (and it does). Three hundred others are trusting in water baptism. Another three hundred are counting on some sort of good works to get them to heaven. Fifty more are workers of iniquity seeking to ruin the church to which they belong or use it for social, political or business objectives. Forty know the way of salvation but have not yet received Christ Jesus as Saviour."

I don't know who wrote this, but I don't think he's far wrong!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Give The Man A Drink!

What would you say of a man journeying through the desert with a full flask of water, if he has a travelling companion with no flask, and yet never offers him a drink? What then if he were to stand by and watch that man die of thirst? Would we not say he was of the cruelest stock - hard hearted and altogether unloving - a man deserving of great punishment? Suppose he appeases his conscience by reasoning the man with no flask could have asked for a sip?

Anyone capable of doing such a thing, we would say, is truly a wicked, wicked man!

Will not the same be said of those who carry within themselves a well of living water yet offer it not to their colleagues, friends, family, even strangers?

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Is Your Faith In Rags?

Franz Reichelt, "The Jumping Tailor", sadly put his faith in fabric and jumped to his death on February 4, 1912.

Reichelt designed an overcoat to fly or float its wearer gently to the ground like the modern parachute. To demonstrate his invention he made a jump of 60 meters from the first deck of the Eiffel Tower. The parachute failed and Reichelt fell to his death.

Though employing all his skill to create a bat wing style cape that would catch the air in its folds and deliver him safely to the ground, Franz did not stand a chance against the universal law of gravitation.

In the same way, many people today are hard at work sewing together complex overcoats of self righteous works in the vain hope it will carry them to safety when they jump from time into eternity. Instead of trusting in Jesus Christ, who has promised to save to the utmost all who come to him, they hope in themselves. Instead of putting on the rich garments of salvation, freely given by our God, they choose rather to wear robes made from filthy rags.

Their end will be the same, they do not stand a chance against the universal law of God’s justice!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

The Gospel Is The Sacrificing Knife!

"Only the Gospel can form a plaster to draw out the very core of contention from the heart. The apostle Paul testifies how he and his brothers were healed of malicious attitudes: "We ourselves also were sometimes foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving diverse lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another" (Titus 3:3). And then Paul writes in some detail how that healing came: "But after that the kindness and love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost" (Titus 3:4-5). He was saying, "If this love of God to us in Christ had not appeared, if we had not been washed by His regenerating Spirit, we would still be paralyzed under the power of our lusts."

Mortification is a work of the Spirit. "If ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live" (Romans 8:13). And the Gospel is the sacrificing knife in the hand of the Spirit, the "sword" God uses to kill sin in the hearts of His people (Ephesians 6:17).

Just as the Gospel lays the axe to strife and digs it up by its bitter roots, so it fills the hearts of men who embrace it with principles, leading to peace and unity. Some of these tenets are self-denial, long-suffering, and gentleness. Self-denial prefers that another be honored before himself. Long-suffering is that which makes one not easily provoked. And if gentleness is pushed by a wrong, it holds the door open for peace to come in again.

We can see a whole bundle of these sweet herbs growing in one bed: "The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, long-suffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance" (Galatians 5:22-23). Now this fruit does not crop up in just every hedge, but only from Gospel seed."

-From The Christian in Complete Armour Daily Readings in Spiritual Warfare Published by Moody Press Chicago 1994 First Published in 1655

Sunday, September 6, 2009

The Sea Of Damnation!

"Or do you show contempt for the riches of His kindness, tolerance and patience, not realizing that God's kindness leads you toward repentance? But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God's wrath, when His righteous judgment will be revealed." Romans 2:4-5

Oh! who will pity you who would not pity yourselves--when you are damned--when you are howling and roaring in hell?

If the day of mercy leaves you graceless--the day of judgment will find you speechless!

There is no standing before Christ--but by standing in Christ.

Ungodly men fear no wrath--because they presently feel no wrath.

Because their sin is now unpunished--they think there is no punishment for their sins!

Because God continues to spare them--they go on to provoke Him!

Because He adds to their lives--they add to their lusts!

Because He is very merciful--they will be very sinful!

Because He is very good to them--they will be very bad to Him!

Because His justice now winks--men think He is blind!

Because He does not reprove them for their sins--therefore they think He approves them in their sins!

But JUSTICE will soon avenge the quarrel of abused mercy!

Oh! sinners, though the patience of God is lasting--it is not everlasting!

If by the warnings of God, you are not alarmed--you shall be consumed by His wrath!

The longer God is in raising His omnipotent arm--the heavier will be the blow when it comes!

The day that begins in mercy--may end in judgment!

God is silent for only so long; but know, that God has vials of wrath filled with indignation--for vessels of wrath fitted for destruction!

If God's mercy does not draw you to repentance--God's judgments will drive you to destruction!

The sea of damnation--shall not be sweetened with one drop of compassion!

"How will we escape--if we neglect such a great salvation!" Hebrews 2:3. If you neglect the great salvation--you cannot escape the great damnation!

Oh! sinners, think of this--before the bottomless pit has shut its mouth upon you!

(William Dyer, "Christ's Famous Titles")

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Walking Along The Narrow Way!

"Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction--and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the way that leads to life--and only a few find it." Matthew 7:13-14

Walking along the Narrow Way, means for the heart and life to be constantly regulated by Christ's holy teaching. It denotes a steady perseverance in faith and obedience to the Lord Jesus; overcoming all opposition, rejecting every temptation to forsake the path of fidelity to Him. It is called the "Narrow Way" because all self-pleasing and self-seeking is shut out.

It is right here that the testing point is reached. Unto the natural man, it is much easier and far more pleasant--to indulge the flesh and follow our worldly propensities. The Broad Road, where the flesh is indulged--is easy, smooth, and attractive! But it ends in "destruction!" Though the "Narrow Way" leads to eternal life--but only FEW tread it.

Multitudes make a profession and claim to be saved--but their lives give no evidence that they are "strangers and pilgrims" here on earth, and that their "treasure" is in heaven. They are afraid of being thought narrow and strict. Satan has deceived them--they imagine that they can get to heaven by an easier route, than by . . .
denying self,
taking up their cross daily,
and following Christ!

There are multitudes of 'religionists' who are attempting to combine the two "ways," making the best of both worlds and serving two masters. They wish to gratify self in time--and enjoy the happiness of Heaven in eternity. Crowds of nominal Christians are deluding themselves into believing that they can do so--but they are terribly deceived!

The reason why so few will enter Eternal Life--is because the multitudes are not seeking it in the way of God's appointing! None seek it aright--but those who pass through the Narrow Gate--and who, despite many discouragements and falls, continue to press forward along the Narrow Way.

"Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction--and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the way that leads to life--and only a few find it." Matthew 7:13-14

(Arthur Pink, "The Narrow Way")

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Entering The Narrow Gate!

"Make every effort to enter through the narrow gate, because many, I tell you, will try to enter and will not be able to." Luke 13:24

Entering the Narrow Gate signifies the heart's acceptance of Christ's holy teaching. Ah, my friend, to really and actually enter this "Narrow Gate" is no easy matter! These words do not picture salvation as a thing of simple and easy attainment. That Jesus should utter such a statement, clearly implies that there are formidable difficulties and obstacles to be overcome, and that slothful nominal professors will surely not enter in.

Why is such striving necessary to "enter" the narrow gate?

First, because SATAN is striving to destroy your soul. "Be careful! Watch out for attacks from the Devil, your great enemy. He prowls around like a roaring lion, looking for some victim to devour!" 1 Peter 5:8

Second, because natural appetites of the FLESH are striving to destroy you: "Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims--abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul." 1 Peter 2:11

Third, because the whole WORLD is arrayed against you. It will seek to draw you by its alluring promises, its Delilah-like deceits, and fatal enticements. Unless you overcome the world, the world will overcome you to the eternal destruction of your soul.

From what has been before us, we may plainly discover why it is that the vast majority of our fellow-men, yes, and of professing Christians also, will fail to reach Heaven--it is because they prefer ...
sin, to holiness;
indulging the lusts of the flesh, to walking according to the Scriptures;
self, to Christ;
the world, to God.

Men refuse to ...
deny self,
abandon their idols, and
submit to Christ as Lord
--and without this, none can take the first step toward Heaven and enter through the narrow gate!

(Arthur Pink, "The Narrow Way")

Sunday, August 30, 2009

He Will Do Right!

Far be it from you to do such a thing--to kill the righteous with the wicked, treating the righteous and the wicked alike. Far be it from you! Will not the Judge of all the earth do right? Genesis 18:25

When God saved Noah in the ark and destroyed the rest of the world’s inhabitants - He did right!

When God saved Lot and his daughters and destroyed Lot's wife and the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah - He did right!

When God saved the first born of Israel during the Passover and destroyed the first born of all Egypt - He did right!

When God saved Peter who denied Christ and destroyed Judas who betrayed Christ - He did right!

When God redeemed one thief on the cross and destroyed the other - He did right!

When God judges everyone and convicts all the ungodly of all the ungodly acts they have done in the ungodly way and of all the harsh words ungodly sinners have spoken against him - He will do right!

When God justifies the wicked that cast themselves upon Christ and destroys the wicked that reject Christ - He does right!

Whether God saves you or destroys you - He will do right!

There's Dust Enough!

"There is dust enough on some of your Bibles to write 'damnation' with your fingers." - Charles Spurgeon

Friday, August 21, 2009

Do You Wish To Be Made Clean?

Jesus Christ did not come into the world to show sinners how to save themselves, he came to save sinners who could not help themselves.

"You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous man, though for a good man someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5:6-8

We so often want to rid ourselves of the leprosy of sin by the power of our own corrupt flesh, but in doing so we cut ourselves off from the only arm of Salvation - Jesus Christ. Can an Ethiopian change his skin, or a leopard his spots? Can a dead man raise himself up, or a blind man restore his own sight? Neither can a sinful man purify himself! It is a physical impossibility!

Is the leprosy of sin still eating at the flesh of your soul? Do you wish to be made clean? Then see now leper in Mark 1:40 running to Jesus and join with him in his plea! Fall to your knees and beg Jesus saying, "If you are willing, you can make me clean."

Why will you not do that? Have you not seen what Jesus did for the leper? Have you not read that it was with compassion that Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man saying, "I am willing, be clean!" and immediately the leprosy left him and he was cured. Mark 1:41-42. Will he not also do that for you?

If you would but call on his name, if you would but run to him and cast yourself upon his mercy, you would see that he is a kind and compassionate saviour - both willing and able to make you clean!

How many lepers where there in Jesus day who would not come to Him out of pride?

Saturday, August 15, 2009

These Are The Signs And Evidences!

"Sense of sin and deep hatred of it, faith in Christ and love to Him, delight in holiness and longing after more of it, love for God’s people and distaste for the things of the world, – these are the signs and evidences which always accompany conversion." - J.C. Ryle

Friday, August 7, 2009

The Great Malady Of Sin!

Sin is transgression of the law. In 1 John 3:4 we read "everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact sin is lawlessness". Now if that were a mere transgression of some abstract rule that God set forth for men to keep it would be bad enough, but we must rightly understand what the law is, more importantly who gives it, so that we may see the hideous nature of sin. The exceeding sinfulness of sin! Now the moral law of God, the commandments given to Israel on Sinai – the law which our consciences bear witness to - is not some arbitrary thing that God has created for us to live under – as if it were below him. Nor is it some higher overarching constraint above him which he himself must live up to. No, this law proceeds from the very being of God. It comes forth from the very character, the very nature of God. The law is what the law is because God is who God is. It is a tangible expression to us of his holy nature, his righteous character, his perfect will.

So when we say sin is transgression of the law we are saying that sin is disobedience to his perfect will, a disagreement with his divine character - a crime against God himself.

Sin is an affront to God. He distains it! It is a usurping of his will. It is a clench fisted, openly defiant rebellion against his rulership, his authority, his being. It is a joining with his enemies to tear him off the throne. It is evil intent and wicked practise.

Sin turned angels into devils, toppled our first parents in the garden of Eden and brought down a curse on all mankind. It brought down the great flood on Noah's generation, fire down on Sodom & Gomorrah, laid waste to a generation of Israelites in the wilderness, and will lay waste to us. As the scripture says, "the soul that sins shall die". Sin digs every grave!

Sin is the committal of the will to the principle and practise of pleasing self! I WILL DO WHAT I WANT TO DO! I will lie when I need to, steal what I want to, hate who I choose, lust for what I like, live how I please, get drunk when I want, sleep with whoever I will, spend what I get on my pleasures. It is the result of a heart that says "I will be the God of my own life. I will not bow down to you, Oh God, and I will certainly not do what you tell me to do!"

Sin has made its home in the heart of every man! We are not sinners because we sin; we sin because we are hell deserving sinners.

But Beware! God has promised that he will punish sin wherever it is found, and in whomever it is found. "Vengeance is mine, I will repay" says the Lord.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Heart Of The Gospel!

"I have found, my brethren, by long experience that nothing touches the heart like the cross of Christ. When the heart is touched and wounded by the two-edged sword of the Law, nothing heals its wounds like the balm that flows from the pierced heart of Jesus." -The Heart of The Gospel, July 1886 by Charles. H. Spurgeon

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Monday, July 27, 2009

Their Condemnation Is Deserved!

We have many men today who preach fact as though it were fiction, and fiction as though it were fact.

Sir, if you do not believe what you preach - get out of the pulpit! I don't care how popular you are! Popularity is not a benchmark of spirituality! Preach the truth or step down!

How many false prophets do we have who stand up and say "Thus saith the Lord" and then call bitter sweet and sweet bitter? Woe to them! They lead sheep astray and scatter the flock!

Their condemnation is deserved!

Saturday, July 25, 2009

We Need A Revival In The Pulpit!

Jesus said, "I tell you the truth, we speak of what we know, and we testify to what we have seen". I am convinced that this is the reason why the gospel is so little preached from many pulpits in this day and age! How can we preach about the One we have not believed in, or the One we have never met? Oh God, we need a revival amongst the people in this land, but more than that, we need a revival in the pulpit!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Am I A Soldier Of The Cross?

Am I a soldier of the cross,
a follower of the Lamb,
and shall I fear to own his cause,
or blush to speak his name?

Must I be carried to the skies
on flowery beds of ease,
while others fought to win the prize,
and sailed through bloody seas?

Are there no foes for me to face?
Must I not stem the flood?
Is this vile world a friend to grace,
to help me on to God?

Sure I must fight, if I would reign;
increase my courage, Lord.
I'll bear the toil, endure the pain,
supported by thy word.

Thy saints in all this glorious war
shall conquer though they die;
they see the triumph from afar,
by faith they bring it nigh.

When that illustrious day shall rise,
and all thy armies shine
in robes of victory through the skies,
the glory shall be thine.

Isaac Watts, 1674-1748

Friday, July 17, 2009

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

All You Could Do Was Look Up!

Last night I took the kids down to feed some ducks by the river. While we were there a flock of a few hundred sulphur crested cockatoo's flew low overhead with a great chorus of screeching. It was breath taking! The sight was amazing and the sound deafening! All you could do was look up!

I couldn't help but think though of the Lord's return and the passage in Jude:

"See, the Lord is coming with thousands upon thousands of his holy ones to judge everyone, and to convict all the ungodly of all the ungodly acts that they have done in the ungodly way, and of all the harsh words that ungodly sinners have spoken against him!"

Some will be filled with rapturous joy at the sight of their Lord and with the thought of dwelling with him for eternity, others will call to the mountains and the rocks, "Fall on us and hide us from the face of him who sits on the throne and from the wrath of the Lamb! For the great day of their wrath has come, and who can stand?"

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

A Timely Warning For Hillsong!

Concerning 'Handel's Messiah' John Newton wrote:

How shall we view the people of our times? I see the great mass of people involved in one common charge of high treason against the omnipotent God! They are already in a state of imprisonment, but have not yet been brought to their trial. The evidence against them is so plain, strong and pointed, that there is not the least doubt of their guilt being fully proved--and that nothing but a free pardon from God can preserve them from their deserved eternal punishment!

In this situation, it would seem in their best interest--to avail themselves of every expedient in their power for obtaining God's mercy. But they are entirely heedless of their imminent danger, and are wholly taken up with contriving methods of amusing themselves, that they may pass away the term of their imprisonment with as much cheerfulness as possible!

Among other resources, they call in the assistance of music--and they are particularly pleased with 'Handel's Messiah'. They choose to make:
the solemnities of their impending judgment,
the character of their Judge,
the methods of His procedure, and
the dreadful punishment to which they are exposed
--the themes of their musical entertainment!

And, as if they were quite unconcerned in the outcome--their attention is chiefly fixed upon the skill of the composer, in adapting the style of his music--to the very solemn subjects with which they are trifling!

The offended King, however, unasked by them, and out of His great mercy and compassion towards those who have no pity for themselves, sends them a gracious message. He assures them that He is unwilling that they should eternally perish; and that He requires, yes, He entreats them to submit to Him! He points out a way in which He offers them a free and a full pardon!

But, instead of taking a single step towards a compliance with His undeserved and gracious offer--they set His message to music! And this, together with a description of their present hopeless state, and of the fearful doom awaiting them if they continue obstinate, is sung for their entertainment, and accompanied with every kind of music!

Surely, if such a case as I have supposed, could be found in real life, though I might admire the musical taste of these people--I would certainly commiserate their stupidity and hardness of heart!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Believer's Riches In Christ (From A-Z)

I was greatly encouraged today by meditating on the following:

Accepted in the beloved (Ephesians 1:6)
Born of God (I John 5:1)
Crucified with Christ (Galatians 2:20)
Delivered from the power of darkness (Colossians 1:13)
Enriched in everything in Him (I Corinthians 1:5)
Forgiven for Christ’s sake (Ephesians 4:32)
Grounded in love (Ephesians 3:17)
Hid with Christ in God (Colossians 3:3)
Instructed in the way of the Lord (Acts 18:25)
Justified by His grace (Titus 3:7)
Kept by the power of God (I Peter 1:5)
Led by the Spirit of God (Romans 8:14)
Made nigh by the Spirit of God (Romans 8:14)
Nourished in the words of faith (I Timothy 4:6)
Ordained to eternal life (Acts 13:48)
Perfected forever (Hebrews 10:14)
Quickened together with Christ (Ephesians 2:5)
Redeemed from the curse of the law (Galatians 3:13)
Sealed with the Holy Spirit of Promise (Ephesians 1:13)
Translated into the kingdom of His dear Son (Colossians 1:13)
Unreproveable in His sight (Colossians 1:22)
Victorious through our Lord Jesus Christ (I Corinthians 15:57)
Washed from our sins in His own blood (Revelation 1:5)
X-alted in glory (Luke 18:14)
Yearned over by the Holy Spirit (Romans 8:26)
Zealous of good works (Titus 2:14)

From Higher Ground May 2008 Volume 3, Issue 2

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Vital Reality Or Virtual Reality?

Do you have fellowship with God, or just fellowship with other people about God?

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Trials Are Medicines!

Consider it pure joy my brothers when you face trials of various kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Perseverance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything!

- James 1:2-4

Trials are medicines which our gracious and wise Physician prescribes, because we need them. He proportions the frequency and weight of them--to what our case requires. Let us trust in His skill--and thank Him for His prescription!

- John Newton

Sunday, June 7, 2009

It's The Truth!

Apart from Christ the only thing I can motivate a Just and Holy God to do is destroy me under the full force of His fierce wrath!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Why do you eat?

Why do you eat? Because you are hungry!

Why are you hungry? Because you are dying!

The fact is, approximately 50,000 cells in your body will die and be replaced with new cells in the time it has taken you to read this sentence! The food we eat becomes the source of nutrients to continually build replacements for dying cells. It's hungry work!

What will happen if you do not eat? You will die!! It's not rocket science! Do I have to force you to eat? No, you do so because you know what will happen if you don't!

Likewise, if we take the time to walk people through the law of God so that they can see they are dying (the soul that sins shall die), then they will become hungry for the bread of life and appropriate it for themselves!

We will not have to encourage them to eat of it, bribe them, or force feed them! Nor will they not grow weary of the taste! They will freely take of it and eat with a grateful heart, thanking their Father in heaven for his loving kindness and mercy for providing such a rich and delightful fare!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Mr Cox's Museum

In 1772 John Newton visited Mr Cox's Mechanical Museum - Here is his take on that!

Before you read his letter,
take a look at this short BBC piece on The Silver Swan.

The Silver Swan was used as a crowd puller in the Museum.

August, 1772
My dear Miss,
I received some instruction where I little expected it--at Mr. Cox's Museum. The efforts of his ingenuity amazed me--while at the same time I was struck with their insignificance. His fine things were curious beyond all I had any idea of; and yet what are they better than toys and amusements, suited to the taste of children! And notwithstanding the variety of their motions, they were all destitute of life.

There is unspeakably more wisdom and skill in the mechanism of a butterfly or a bee which flutters unnoticed in the fields--than in all his fancy apparatus put together! But the works of God are disregarded, while the feeble imitations of them which men can produce gain universal applause! If you and I could make self-moving lions and elephants, what would it profit us?

Blessed be God, that He has given us some glimpses of His wisdom and love--by which our hearts, more hard and lifeless by nature than the stones in the street--are constrained and enabled to move upwards, and to seek after Him. He has given us in His Word, a greater treasure than all that we ever beheld with our eyes, and a hope which shall flourish when the earth and all its works shall be burnt up! What will all the fine things of men's devising be worth on that day?

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Red Hot, Unconventional, Unfettered Devotion!

"Christ's call is to save the lost, not the stiff-necked; He came not to call scoffers but sinners to repentance; not to build and furnish comfortable chapels, churches, and cathedrals at home in which to rock Christian professors to sleep by means of clever essays, stereotyped prayers, and artistic musical performances, but to capture men from the devil's clutches and the very jaws of Hell. This can be accomplished only by a red-hot, unconventional, unfettered devotion, in the power of the Holy Spirit, to the Lord Jesus Christ."

- CT Studd

Lord, how little of that life I truly know - red-hot, unconventional, unfettered devotion! Please forgive me for being so lukewarm, for playing it safe, for all the times when cold, damp indifference creeps into my heart, for shutting up when I should speak up, for staying when I should go, for the time I have spent chasing after the wind and for all the work I attempt in the power of the flesh – which is really no power at all! Lord, if you are willing you can make me clean! Clean the marketplace of this world out of my heart! Oh that zeal for your house would consume me! This is my hearts desire - red-hot, unconventional, unfettered devotion, in the power of the Holy Spirit, to the Lord Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Monday, May 11, 2009

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Thought For The Day!

God is slow to anger and abounding in much love. Man is slower to repent and abounding in much foolishness!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Saved From Free Fall!

If breaking God's law is like jumping out of a plane, then attempting to save oneself through keeping it is like trying to climb back in. Impossible! The law of gravity will not allow it!

As gravity will see to it that a man is hurtled to earth, so God's eternal Justice will see to it that an unrepentant sinner is thrown in hell. It does not matter how hard a man strives, he cannot soar to the heights of the righteous requirements of the law - it can not be done! Though he may try to fly with the birds, he is not much more than a madman running around the park, flailing his arms and squawking like a bird.

Man has as much hope of saving himself as does a spider’s web of stopping a falling rock!

But what is impossible with man is possible with God!

When a man, fast free falling into the pit of hell, comes to the end of himself and stops trying to flap his arms, but rather, cries out for mercy to the only one who can save him - then, and only then, will he look up and see the parachute of our Lord Jesus Christ unfold above him.

Behold the sight!

And how do you describe the feeling of relief that you feel when you see his blood spread out like a canopy above you, arresting your descent into destruction and carrying you, by the harness of His grace, safely to His side?

Joy? Relief? Gratitude? Yes, all of these and much more!

And what is your response? Do you want to cut the cords of grace and dive headlong again into the free fall of sin? By no means! To suggest such is sheer stupidity! No man in his right mind, having passed from death to life, would willingly cut himself free and fall to his destruction! No, a man saved from sure death, will, from joy over, sing praises to his Saviour and resolutely determine to serve and worship Him all the days of his life!

Monday, May 4, 2009

The Firstborn Donkey: Free From Universal Law?

"You must redeem the firstborn donkey with a lamb. But if you do not redeem it--you must kill the donkey by breaking its neck!" Exodus 34:20

Every firstborn creature must be the Lord's--but since the donkey was unclean, it could not be presented in sacrifice to Him. What then? Should it be allowed to go free from the universal law? By no means! God admits of no exceptions. The donkey is His due--but He will not accept it; He will not abate the claim--but yet He cannot be pleased with the unclean victim. No way of escape remained, but redemption--the donkey must be saved by the substitution of a lamb in its place; or if not redeemed, it must die!

My soul, here is a lesson for you! That unclean donkey is yourself! You are justly the property of the Lord who made you and preserves you--but you are so sinful that God will not, cannot, accept you! It has come to this--the Lamb of God must stand in your stead--or you must die eternally! Let all the world know of your gratitude to that spotless Lamb who has died for you, and so redeemed you from the fatal curse of the law!

Must it not sometimes have been a question with the Israelite, as to which should die--the donkey or the lamb? Would not the man pause to estimate and compare the values of these animals? Assuredly there was no comparison between the value of a sinful man--and the spotless Lord Jesus! Yet the Lamb dies--and man the donkey is spared! My soul, admire the boundless love of God to you! Vile worms are bought--with the blood of the holy Lamb of God! Dust and ashes are redeemed--with a price far above silver and gold! What a doom would have been mine--had not plenteous redemption been found!

The breaking of the neck of the donkey was but a momentary penalty. But who shall measure the eternal wrath to come--to which no limit can be imagined! Inestimably dear is the glorious Lamb--who has redeemed me from such a doom!

- Charles Spurgeon

Sunday, April 26, 2009

God Sends Rain On The Unjust!

As I sit here downloading some sermons by AW Tozer, replying to comments over on Fish With Trish and listening to the melodious sound of the rain falling outside, I thank God that He sends His rain on both the just and the unjust! If He only sent rain for the just, we'd all have died of thirst long ago!

More than that, I thank God that He did not send His One and Only Son for the just but the unjust! For apart from Him we would all perish! He is the living water for a soul lost in the desert of his own iniquity! A safe harbour for helpless vessels in the stormy sea of transgression!

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Lest We Forget

I received this SMS from a brother who has served in the Australian Defence Force.

Think of all the Aussie soldiers stories of how courageous, bold, sacrifical, willing to fight to death, such intimate close unity with each other, take orders without analysing their commander, but just listening properly and doing what they said no matter what the cost. Well how much "MORE" so can we be for God in courage, boldness, unity, sacrificial, obedient, all through what He did on the cross, and He has given us His Spirit to live in us forever to help us in everyway, all for Gods glory, to bring glory to the mighty name of Jesus!

Was thinking what Jesus would do on a day like today. He'd prob say something like- "soldiers on earth deserve honor for fighting for their country, but how much more so for the soldier's of Christ who follows Him through all trials and temptations- honor that will last for eternity, because they are in Christ, covered with the blood of Jesus".

"Endure hardship with us like a good soldier of Christ Jesus. No one serving as a soldier gets involved in civilian affairs—he wants to please his commanding officer." 2 Timothy 2:3-4

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Friday, April 17, 2009

Everything Revolves Around What He Did!

In September 2006, Petty Officer Michael Monsoor, 25, of Garden Grove California, fell on a grenade that landed on a rooftop in Ramadi, where he and two other Navy SEALs were stationed as part of a sniper team. Monsoor saved the lives of the other two.

When interviewed, a 29-year-old Navy SEAL lieutenant who declined to be identified, replied, "You think about him every day. And everything pretty much revolves around what he did!"

Isn't it amazing - a man can jump on a grenade to save his mates and his sacrifice turns their lives upside down, yet there are many who claim an interest in Christ's sacrifice but have no regard for Him, think little of Him and have no desire to pour out their lives for Him. My friends, this should not be! When someone dies for you it changes everything! Your whole world is tipped on its head! Not only are you eternally grateful, you owe your very life to Him!

Jesus Christ, the captain of our salvation, the perfect sinless Son of God who took all our sin upon Himself and was crushed under the wrath of a Just & Holy God, who saves all those who believe on Him from being destroyed... if he did that for you, and you know it, you will not remain cold and indifferent!

The Law Is A Defibrillator!

The law is a defibrillator for shocking dead people into a state of consciousness in order to give them the life saving gospel. We are to be the paramedics that never give up. Defibrillating someone until they "come to" (a place of the consciousness of sin, repentance and faith) or God calls the time and they pass from here into eternity.

A mate of mine is an Ambo and a while ago he told me about an incident in which he tried to resuscitate an elderly lady. Covered in sweat, aching back and arms they worked on her until the doctor called her dead.

On reflection, we should be like that. Labouring until sweat forms on our brow, until our joints ache doing all we can to awaken the conscience, and bring a pulse of concern to the flat lined, unregenerate, God hating heart.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Rowan & Aaron

This is a shout out to two blokes I had the pleasure of witnessing to today - Aaron & Rowan. Guys, if you happen to drop by the blog - thank you for taking the time to talk with me about the things of eternity!

Rowan, if you get some time, please have a read of this: The Execution

Aaron, you mentioned that you have heard it all before but it just doesn't make sense, the penny never dropped. Please have a read of these two poems: Tis Good News and When The Penny Drops

Guys I pray that God will open your eyes to the truth - you cannot save yourself! No amount of trying will make you good in his eyes! But God has made a way of salvation for you!! If you would but repent (turn from your unbelief, your life of living to please self) and put your trust in Jesus Christ - He can save you! But if you keep on going the way you are headed, there is a day of reckoning coming. A day where you will have to stand before a just and Holy God to give an account of your life!

Please take some time to check these things out! I don't want you guys to blow it!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Friday, April 10, 2009

Monday, April 6, 2009

That Which Is Most Needed!

That which is most needed by all of us in order to a better understanding of Divine things is not a brilliant intellect, but a truly humble heart and a teachable spirit, and for that we would daily and fervently pray, for we possess it not by nature. - AW Pink

Few Love The Cross Of Jesus!

JESUS has always many who love His heavenly kingdom, but few who bear His cross. He has many who desire consolation, but few who care for trial. He finds many to share His table, but few to take part in His fasting. All desire to be happy with Him; few wish to suffer anything for Him. Many follow Him to the breaking of bread, but few to the drinking of the chalice of His passion. Many revere His miracles; few approach the shame of the Cross. Many love Him as long as they encounter no hardship; many praise and bless Him as long as they receive some comfort from Him. But if Jesus hides Himself and leaves them for a while, they fall either into complaints or into deep dejection. Those, on the contrary, who love Him for His own sake and not for any comfort of their own, bless Him in all trial and anguish of heart as well as in the bliss of consolation. Even if He should never give them consolation, yet they would continue to praise Him and wish always to give Him thanks. What power there is in pure love for Jesus -- love that is flee from all self-interest and self-love!

Do not those who always seek consolation deserve to be called mercenaries? Do not those who always think of their own profit and gain prove that they love themselves rather than Christ? Where can a man be found who desires to serve God for nothing? Rarely indeed is a man so spiritual as to strip himself of all things. And who shall find a man so truly poor in spirit as to be free from every creature? His value is like that of things brought from the most distant lands.

If a man give all his wealth, it is nothing; if he do great penance, it is little; if he gain all knowledge, he is still far afield; if he have great virtue and much ardent devotion, he still lacks a great deal, and especially, the one thing that is most necessary to him. What is this one thing? That leaving all, he forsake himself, completely renounce himself, and give up all private affections. Then, when he has done all that he knows ought to be done, let him consider it as nothing, let him make little of what may be considered great; let him in all honesty call himself an unprofitable servant. For truth itself has said: "When you shall have done all these things that are commanded you, say: 'we are unprofitable servants.'"

Then he will be truly poor and stripped in spirit, and with the prophet may say: "I am alone and poor." No one, however, is more wealthy than such a man; no one is more powerful, no one freer than he who knows how to leave all things and think of himself as the least of all.

(THE INTERIOR LIFE - Thomas Ë Kempis)

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Street Evangelism

I just received this email from a brother here in Adelaide! As you read this email I pray that you will be strengthened, encouraged, rebuked, challenged... God knows where you are at!

Hi all,

I thought I would pass on this update from the evangelism happening here in Adelaide, for much needed prayer, and to keep you all posted on the battle; this is taken from

Tonight was one spiritual battle to say the least!

"Why do the nations rage and the people plot a vain thing? The kings of the earth have set themselves, the rulers take counsel together, Against the Lord and against His anointed, saying, "Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us." He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision." - Psalm 2:1-4

This Psalm has summed up my views perfectly regarding evangelism in Adelaide. We don't live in a religiously 'free' country. Your rights are raped right before your eyes and you don't even see it. The strong language is warranted by the strong opposition of the prince of the power of the air to our Gospel mission!

I felt quite unwilling to go into evangelize tonight. People often think I must be some fire-brand who never hides away into fear - this is far from true. I was quite cowardly, not wanting to go in and reach the lost, until my wife rebuked me and told me I was a debtor to all men. Realizing my obligation I decided to go, but still didn't feel that I could. We arrived and started handing out tracts while some of the guys played some Paul Washer gospel messages. They walked away when we had word police were on the way, at this time, Celeste and I begun talking to a guy in his forties who was clearly stoned or drugged. He was very arrogant, and wouldn't suffer us to say one thing to him, he began to speak so loud that it was almost loud enough to preach and everyone around was watching him as he ridiculed us and mocked God.

I asked him, "Are you going to let us speak at all or are you going to keep on blabbering like a crazy man?" He swore his head off, got real angry and ripped the tract we gave him, so we walked away. This was quite frightening really, because the guy was almost inhuman the way he wouldn't let us say one word - which led me to believe the devil was involved somehow (without being super-spiritual - we are in a spiritual battle).

We then saw about 60 or more people from the Potters House group march down the mall shouting 'crucify him!' as a man was dressed as Jesus carrying a cross with fake blood all over him. It was beautiful to see such a strong and bold declaration of the CROSS in Rundle Mall. I could tell hell was raging in anger as Christ was exalted. Shortly following this, we caught up with the guys playing Paul Washer sermon jams and then the cops caught them. The police officer refused to give a receipt for the amplifier he was using (which is illegal - if police confiscate an item, they must provide a receipt - otherwise it is STEALING - by law). The officer would not yield a receipt, so Caleb refused to leave without one, and so they arrested him. Pulling some police trick on him, they pretended to make it look like he was 'resisting arrest' and so they pummelled him into the ground face first and was wrestling with him on the ground. The officer had grazes all down his arm afterward.

Josh held his hands out and asked the police to arrest him too, and so they did. Caleb and Josh were singing hymns in the patrol wagon as it drove down Rundle Mall, and all the passerbyers heard the hymns. I went to the end of the mall to preach beside Pulteney St, when the Potters House were there boldly proclaiming the Gospel. We went outside the Myer Centre to preach and Daniel kicked it off. After about half an hour, I hopped up and two ladies were watching me with sly smiles on their faces. One of them looked like a lesbian so I begun to preach from 1 Corinthians 6:9,10. They approached me and asked if I was condemning them. I took them to John 3:18 which says they are 'condemned already' - all I can do is show them they are. I then bluntly asked if they were lesbians to which one of them responded quite shocked, "We're sisters excuse me!" I felt quite stupid for a moment, but in actual fact, sisters or not - they were lesbians, as we found out later. Their conviction of sin led them to cover it up.

It was quite a sad conversation, the lady grabbed my hand looked into my eyes from her eyes that were so cold and full of darkness and emptiness and asked me if God loved me anymore than he loved her lesbian friend. I asked her, "Which God?" She said "You're God". I said, "Who is my God?" She said "God", to which I replied, "No, the God of the Bible". I said this because she didn't want me to share scripture, she wanted my opinion from the heart. I told her my opinion from the heart was wedded to the Word of God and that if she is asking me questions about God, she is asking about the God of the Bible, hence, I must turn to Scripture. I begun sharing with her the Gospel, and named many sins I felt she was living in. It was quite sad, because when I shared with her how God crucified, slaughtered his only Son for her sin she proudly struts in, tears welled up in her eyes - but her love for sin captivated her more than love for God.

She then started telling us that she used to go to a Pentecostal church (in England). She told us she was angry that they always wanted money, wanted bank account numbers, wanted 10% of her income. I told her flat out that's not in the Bible. She told me the Old Testament does mention 10%, to which I replied, "Yes, the OLD covenant, we are in the NEW". I was so angry at prosperity pimping churches at this point, places like Hillsong and Paradise and Edge Church. This is the damage they do - but it got worse. She then told me that when she was 7 years on (for about 5 years in duration) she was raped continually by an older man. She told us she prayed every night for deliverance and it didn't come. "Where was God!?" she said. I told her He was there, and that her issue was not one of God's answer, but the timing of the answer. God obviously delivered her, as she is no longer being raped, and yet the answer did not come as quickly as she hoped.

No wonder she is a lesbian now, she must think men are carnivorous evil-doing machines, (which they are by the way, without Christ). I pleaded with her to get right with God, but she left hand in hand with her partner. It was very sad, we prayed for them. This is the deal with street evangelism: you don't know who might be the next rapist in your city. The next murderer. The next hoon to kill himself on a stobie pole. You don't know. They MAY just be in the mall that night. Street evangelism is so much broader and deeper than invitational evangelism. You can invite friends and lost associates to church or youth group, but that is so limited. You are limited to one time a week (Sunday), you are limited to only a few people to get along - really, it's not profitable. It's not wrong - but it's not profitable. On the streets, you can share the Gospel with hurting people like this woman was, you can meet them face to face, eye to eye with what they need to hear, and only fools mock at the lack of results. Who are we to say there is none? God giveth the increase. Wesley testified that God most often hides from our eyes that part we play in the conversion of others - lest we boast in it. He concludes that if we are groaning in prayer for a soul, and that soul comes to Christ, then our prayer no-doubt had to do with it.

Street evangelism is real evangelism. I remember witnessing to a girl aged 15, not really a good friend, but someone I knew and had spent time with; Carly Ryan. I remember one night being on my knees before God in my room on Folland Ave, Northgate (where I used to live). I felt God burden me with calling up all the unsaved people I was spending time with, and witnessing to them. I remember I called up about 10 people that night, one of them was Carly. She was at a sleepover, and I tried to share the Gospel with her, but it didn't last long until she started saying '666' and 'hail satan'. They hung up after 14 minutes. I got on my knees and prayed fervently for them after the call, because my God is stronger than them. Shortly after, I bumped into Carly in the mall, she had a new boyfriend. I told her to watch out for guys wanting to use her body for their own satisfaction, and said sex is for marriage. She blushed and didn't really know what to say, and retreated into her friends. When I was leaving she ran up to me and gave me a hug, then I told her that I didn't want to seem weird or a fanatic, but that I told her those things because I cared for her, she smiled and sighed and said, 'ok'. That was last I saw of her. Three months later I was sitting in a coffee shop by myself off Pirie St reading the newspaper reporting of a girl, aged 15, with red in her hair, found washed up on the beach at Horseshoe bay, Victor Harbor. I thought nothing of it, until the next night at youth group I get a phone call telling me that Carly Ryan was raped and drowned when spending time with two men, one a teenager, the other quite older. Her face was on the front page of the newspapers for almost a week, and the story continued for weeks. God cared enough about Carly Ryan, loved her enough, to give her warnings. You know, Celeste and I have talked about this many times, and we truly believe, if God's sovereign hand was pleased to do it, that in those moments during her rape, in those moments when these guys were beating her up, in those moments when she was under the water, life flashing before her eyes, hands around her neck, drowning her - if she had remembered our words? If she had cried out for Christ to save her? God is sovereign. I trust it may be true. God really challenged me to ask myself if I had been fervent enough in witnessing? If I had been real enough, challenging enough, if I really plead enough with her to come to Christ? Or, even worse, what if I neglected to share with her? What if she had died and I had failed to give her evangelistic witness under the banner of 'relational evangelism' and spent time to build a friendship? It doesn't work. We must share the Gospel. I remember preaching about this at college and telling people now is the time to go all out with evangelism. After my sermon, the worship leader gets up and strumming a nice emotional tune says, 'Yes, Forbes was challenging this morning, we need to evangelize - but I really challenge you, DON'T SAY ANYTHING to your neighbours and friends, just be an EXAMPLE." Talk about a mouthpiece for satan if I ever heard one. Almost like my sermon went in one ear and out the other. The church is full of rebels like this, who indifferently snub away the Gospel's call to others, while they sleep at night, people in their community are on their way to hell. Carly Ryan to me, was an example of how we can't stop evangelizing. Who am I to sit at home because I don't feel like going out - when there are girls like her out there, next on someones' list. Will we stay home because we are tired? Because it is winter and cold? Because the police are onto us? Because the council wants to get rid of us? Because it may mean spending a few hours to the weekend in the city watchouse? To be honest, I for one, as long as the Lord wills, am not going cease to preach and teach Jesus in the mall for this reason secondly, firstly is for God's glory.

Who are the Carly Ryan's in your life? People you bump into every now and again. People who sit in the pew next to you on Sunday but have never truly been saved? People at your local high school? Working in the shops you shop at week in and week out? What are you afraid of? In the words of Leonard Ravenhill;

"Why are our feet so leaden in moving to the rescue of these who move relentlessly by the edge of eternity, and whose one step into it will seal their doom? Why is there at present amongst us this criminal indifference to the lostness of men? And criminal it is! Have we nothing to communicate? Is our living so inconsistent with our telling?Are we pitiably unsure of the truth of the Bible concerning the lost? Are we so stony-hearted that neither God's promises nor God's threats disturb us? What octopus has us in its grip? Where will our spiritual polio, our slovenly attention to divine truth land us - and others?
Ask yourselves these soul-searching questions:
Why don't we attack?
Why do we fear?
Why do we hesitate?
What chills our urgency?
Have we nothing to communicate?
Are we unsure of our own Biblical knowledge?
Do we lack personal assurance of salvation?
Are we unconvinced that the sinners stand in jeopardy of an eternal hell?
Witnessing is not optional, but obligatory. We Christians are debtors."
- L. Ravenhill, 'Why this suffocating indifference' and 'We need a baptism of Holy Anger' chapters from 'Sodom had no Bible' (1979 Bethany House publishers).

Following this conversation with the ladies, a young black African man came up, he seemed to enjoy my preaching, 'very biblical' he said. He proceed to ask me questions about the Bible, and he knew a lot of verses off by heart and their references. For a moment I was impressed; until I realized he was trying to get me to talk theology with him over whether to worship on the Sabbath day or not. He wouldn't' let me get a word in - so I thought I'd ask him a question to examine where his heart was; and proceed to ask if he would rather debate theology with me and in doing so stop me from preaching the Gospel of salvation, or if he would like to witness to people who might die tonight? He ignored the question and proceeded with his spiel and so I passed him over to Sam to deal with while I kept preaching the Gospel to the people who were still hanging around.

The devil loves to use any form of distraction he can. He is a master of deceit. We must not be ignorant of his devices. We must not deceive ourselves into thinking he is not out to get us. If the power of the Holy Ghost is upon to witness (Acts 1:8), then he will be onto us. He roams like a lion, seeking to devour. When he finds someone sold out to the Gospel, sold out to the evangelization of our nation, sold out to sacrifice, like Paul was, the demons will testify, 'Jesus and I know, and Paul I know...' - do the demons say of you, 'Jesus and I know and (your name here) I know???' or do they say to you, like they said to the seven sons of Sceva, 'Jesus I know and Paul I know but WHO ARE YE?' - Acts 19:15.

When the Christians came out of the upper room - all hell knew they'd arrived. The devil lost 3000 of his captives that day. Only a short time following, another 2000 captives of satan were brought from darkness to light. This sheds some light on whether or not satan has a cause to fear in this day - but I'll tell you this, he has learned from history. John Wesley has scarred him, Whitefield has thrashed him, Luther scourged him - all because God possessed the men! God shook nations through the men! And the pages of history cannot be erased. The devil knows what the firstfruits of an awakening look like - more than we, or even Jonathan Edwards knows. Hence, he will be as committed to pulling us down as we are committed to going out - but only as LONG as we put up a fight. The apostles of Acts chapter 4 and 5 put a fight. Their faithfulness led angels to lead them out of prison, even Paul and Silas blasted the prison walls with the dynamite of prayer. The prisons would never forget those men. The Philippian jailor had no choice but to cry out for salvation. The Gospel is needed in the jails as much as in the streets - so blessed be God wherever we land. "Who will go for us?"

"I feel a love constraining me,
To go and seek the lost,
I yield, My Lord, my all to Thee,
To save at any cost." Selah

Monday, March 30, 2009

Preach With Your Sword!

It is the job of all God's men to take the sharp two edged sword of the word of truth and plunge it deep into the heart of man. If man is to die to self before he can be born again, then let us with steady hand, aim straight and with all our loving might, sink in the blade up to the hilt!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

The Atheist!

God has made it clear in his word that an atheist but a man who will neither glorify Him, nor give thanks to Him! His thinking has become futile and his foolish heart is darkened! He claims to be wise, but he has become a fool! He spends his days gathering in his tattered bag a few worthless trinkets from this fallen age, and while doing so overlooks the pearl of great price! He has most willingly allowed himself to be blinded by the false eternal! Deceived into living for a few pleasures in this fallen, evil age, he trades his birthright for a bowl of soup! He blindly sends his eternal, immortal soul to hell while he spends his days chasing after the wind! He does not see that his life is a mist, a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes. There is no fear of God before his eyes, though it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. God has given him a conscience, yet he sears it as with a hot iron in his continued rebellion. He is an enemy of God through his unbelief, suppressing the truth through his wicked works – and although he knows God’s righteous decree that all who do such things deserve eternal punishment, he not only continues to do these very things, but also approves of those who practice them. Yet God is patient with him, not wishing that any should perish, but that all would repent and cry out to Him for salvation. The very fact that these many years he has kept him from peril, granting him each new day an opportunity to repent, is a testament to His great mercy and loving kindness! The grace of God that has been extended to us has been extended to him also! But this will not always be the case. One day the hand outstretched to draw him in will be retracted, and the upheld hand that holds back the penalty of the law will lowered, and the atheist will be swept away under the wrath of God by his own iniquity and sins. Dear atheist, if God did not want to save you he would not have sent you a Saviour to be slaughtered on the cross for your sins. If God did not want to save you He would have brought justice down on you the minute you first broke His law. If God did not want to save you He would not be leading you to blogs like this, bringing you into the hearing of the gospel. Dear Atheist, I am no better! I do not deserve the grace that has been given me, yet He has saved me and He can save you too! Seek Him now while He may be found, because when you breathe your last breath and step out from time into eternity you will find yourself standing before a just and Holy God who will give you what your sins deserve! There will be no excuse, you have heard the gospel, you have heard of His Son - Jesus Christ - sent as an atoning sacrifice to save you, but if you reject that mercy - how do you expect to escape? How shall you escape if you neglect so great a Salvation?

Others May, You Cannot!

If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it.
(Matthew 16:24-25)

If God has called you to be truly like Jesus in all your spirit, He will draw you into a life of crucifixion and humility. He will put on you such demands of obedience that you will not be allowed to follow other Christians. In many ways, He seems to let other good people do things which He will not let you do.

Others who seem to be very religious and useful may push themselves, pull wires, and scheme to carry out their plans, but you cannot. If you attempt it, you will meet with such failure and rebuke from the Lord as to make you sorely penitent.

Others can brag about themselves, their work, their successes, their writings, but the Holy Spirit will not allow you to do any such thing. If you begin to do so, He will lead you into some deep mortification that will make you despise yourself and all your good works.

Others will be allowed to succeed in making great sums of money, or having a legacy left to them, or in having luxuries, but God may supply you only on a day-to-day basis, because He wants you to have something far better than gold, a helpless dependence on Him and His unseen treasury.

The Lord may let others be honored and put forward while keeping you hidden in obscurity because He wants to produce some choice, fragrant fruit for His coming glory, which can only be produced in the shade.

God may let others be great, but keep you small. He will let others do a work for Him and get the credit, but He will make you work and toil without knowing how much you are doing. Then, to make your work still more precious, He will let others get the credit for the work which you have done; this to teach you the message of the Cross, humility, and something of the value of being cloaked with His nature.

The Holy Spirit will put a strict watch on you, and with a jealous love rebuke you for careless words and feelings, or for wasting your time, which other Christians never seem distressed over.

So make up your mind that God is an infinite Sovereign and has a right to do as He pleases with His own, and that He may not explain to you a thousand things which may puzzle your reason in His dealings with you.

God will take you at your word. If you absolutely sell yourself to be His slave, He will wrap you up in a jealous love and let other people say and do many things that you cannot. Settle it forever; you are to deal directly with the Holy Spirit, He is to have the privilege of tying your tongue or chaining your hand or closing your eyes in ways which others are not dealt with. However, know this great secret of the Kingdom: When you are so completely possessed with the Living God that you are, in your secret heart, pleased and delighted over this peculiar, personal, private, jealous guardianship and management of the Holy Spirit over your life, you will have found the vestibule of heaven, the high calling of God.

By G.D. Watson

Saturday, March 28, 2009

We Must Hang On His Word!

Every day he was teaching at the temple. But the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the leaders among the people were trying to kill him. Yet they could not find any way to do it, because all the people hung on his words.
Luke 19:47-48

A few thoughts:

1. Jesus was always about his Father's business, it wasn't a Sunday morning and Wednesday night deal! And it wasn't just something he did either, it was who he was! He poured out his life in service for the Father - ought not we do the same? Ought not we pour out our lives in the service of the One who loved us to death, even death on a cross? Can we say as Him, "My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working."

2. His words broke the proud of heart, and bound the broken hearted. Brought sinners to repentance and condemned the self righteous! His words were full of authority, truth and life. Wisdom poured forth in his speech. The people hung on his every word - ought not we do the same? One greater than Solomon has come, who's words are full of grace and truth, yet do we hear him? Do we heed him? Do not merely listen to the Word and so deceive yourselves, do what it says... Listen to what He says so that it would never be said about you - "Why do you call me Lord, Lord and do not do what I say?"

3. The truth will anger the proud hearted, self righteous individual. Anyone who thinks he is something, when he is nothing, will hate those who point that out to him! They hate the truth because it contradicts what they do, say and think, and like an axe to the root it cuts them down. The Pharisees prided themselves in their ability to see, but Christ showed them they were blind. They prided themselves in their keeping of the law, but Christ showed them that not only did they break the law, but they neglected the weightier matters - love, justice, mercy. They hated Christ because He was full of truth and life, and they were hypocrites, full of darkness and death! Ought not we speak the truth as Christ? Yes! God has commanded us to speak the truth! Whatever light you have received from Him, whatever revelation of the truth, let it shine from a stand so that those around may see His goodness, and turn and seek His face!

4. While we are hanging onto the Words of Christ the enemy has a difficult time finding a way to shipwreck our faith. His goal is to destroy Christ (if that were possible!) and cause as many as could be deceived into crucifying for themselves the Son of God! He will do all he can to tempt them away from the Word - and those he cannot draw away from it's hearing, he will blind them to its understanding!

We must lash ourselves to the Word of God! Meditate on it day and night! Get it deep down into our hearts, think much upon it and never let it depart from our lips!

The man who spends his time in the water of God's Word will be like a tree planted by streams of water which yields its fruit in season and who's leaf does not wither. When the hot noon day sun of tribulation beats down upon his back he will not wither and fall, on the contrary, he will experience great growth and bring forth much fruit to the Father's glory!

5. In order for the deceiver, the antichrist, to appear and deceive many, the many must lose sight of the true Christ! There are many in this day and age who are not hanging on the Words of Christ! They know not his voice, they know not the Truth! No one who knows the genuine article will trade it for a cheap imitation! No one who knows the true Shepherd will follow the voice of a stranger - his speech will sound strange and foreign to them. His philosophies vain and shallow! He will be as one from the world and speak to them from the viewpoint of the world and the world will listen to him, but it will strike a discord with the living Word that lives inside every true believer. His words are Truth and they are life! We must hang onto the Words of Christ like a man in a swollen river hangs onto the rope of his rescuers!

Friday, March 27, 2009

The Greatest Reward!

Much study of doctrine will make you a theologian. Much labouring under the law will make you a Pharisee. Much pursuing of Christ will leave you rewarded. Though you will be broken, and humbled, you will find Him! God is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him. And how does He reward them? Not with mere trinkets of this fallen age but by giving Himself – the greatest reward of all.

He has given us one of infinite worth – Jesus Christ. The pearl of great price! If anyone returns back to the world, it is because they have never found that pearl. Oh, what a loss! To trade such a great treasure for dung, a birthright for a bowl of soup! Truth is: when you lay truly lay hold of Christ, by faith, He takes your breath away! The world starts to dim, your desire for it fades and from joy over you trade everything you have, even your life, to follow Him.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Oh What Tangled Webs We Weave!

Recently here in Australia, a retired judge committed purgery in an attempt to avoid a $77 speeding fine. As a result, he has landed himself a three year sentence in prison with a two year non parole period, lost his title of QC, will lose the right to practice law, might well lose his Order of Australia honour and $200,000 a year pension and now has the dubious honour of being the first Australian judge to be sent to jail.

While admitting his guilt, the former Federal Court judge tried to defend his integrity as a basically honest man who made a "mistake" by lying. In defending his character, he said: "I don't think I'm the slightest bit dishonest. I just made a mistake."

The "I lied, but I'm basically honest", or the "That might make me a liar, but at least I'm not a murderer" defense is probably the most common defense people will use on the day of judgement when they stand before a Holy God to give an account of their lives. Some might even argue, "If my falsehood enhances God's truthfulness and so increases his glory, why am I still condemned as a sinner?" Why? Because God has commanded all men to speak truth! You shall not lie is the ninth commandment.

Oh what tangled webs we weave, when we practise to deceive!

Some people's falsehood brings them much strife in this age, as Mr Einfield has since discovered, but everyones falsehood will bring them trouble in the age to come! As the Scripture says, "All liars will have their part in the lake of fire" Revelation 21:8b

And there is no escaping this fact... we are all liars!

Yet, though we are condemned by the law, and we find ourselves like Mr Einfield - set to lose everything, even our very soul in the fires of Hell - we are not alone! We have One who speaks to the Father in our defense, Jesus Christ the Righteous One! He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours, but also for the sins of the whole world!

Before the throne of God above
I have a strong and perfect plea.
A great high Priest whose Name is Love
Who ever lives and pleads for me.
My name is graven on His hands,
My name is written on His heart.
I know that while in Heaven He stands
No tongue can bid me thence depart.

Monday, March 23, 2009

What Makes You Better?

"What makes you better than anyone else? What do you have--that God hasn't given you? And if all you have is from God--why boast as though you have accomplished something on your own?" 1 Corinthians 4:7

Christian! By nature--you are no better than others! What would you be--without the continual influence of the Spirit? O believer, whatever you are--you have nothing to make you proud. The more you have--the more you are in debt to God--and should you be proud of that which renders you a debtor?

Consider your origin--look back to what you were. "Once you were dead, doomed forever because of your many sins!" Ephesians 2:1. Consider what you would have been--but for divine grace!

It is only God's grace--which has made you to differ! Great believer--you would have been a great sinner--if God had not made you to differ! O you who are valiant for truth--you would have been as valiant for error--if grace had not laid hold upon you!

Therefore, do not be proud, though you have a wide domain of grace--for once, you had not a single thing to call your own--except your sin and misery!

Oh! strange infatuation, that you--who have borrowed everything, should think of exalting yourself! How foolish--that you--a poor dependent pensioner upon the bounty of your Savior--are yet proud! Shame on you--O silly heart!

CH Spurgeon

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Fancy A Cruise?

The church of Jesus Christ is not a cruise ship on the way to heaven, but a battleship stationed at the very gates of hell. We should not be contenting ourselves with a pleasent afternoon walk on the deck of our own salvation, but manning the guns and fighting for souls!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Except What Is Common To Man!

I find this a comforting thought - No temptation has seized you except what is common to man! The enemy sometimes does well to whisper in our ear this lie: that the temptation's which oft besiege us are like none that any other soul suffers. Oh, if he can trap you with that thought, he can inflict great agony of soul. For if we believe the lie that we are altogether unworthy to come to our Lord and Saviour (because of our many sins and evil inclinations) we remain cut off from hope and help.

In the same way that a pride of lions maneuver to separate an antelope from the safety of the pack, so too does our enemy seek to draw us away from the safety of abiding in our Lord and Saviour. But, when we realize that the temptations which assail us are common to man, even to Christ himself (though He was tempted, yet remained without sin), the enemy is disarmed of this great dividing weapon.

He tries many ways to divert our attention, shift our gaze, weaken our faith, dash our hope – for while our eyes behold the Christ, and our hearts long after the Son of the living God, and our confidence remains in Him, the things of this world remain somewhat dim, the flesh somewhat subdued and temptation’s somewhat lacking in power.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Psalm Of Deliverence!

Father, has anyone ever trusted in you and been put to shame? Has anyone ever put their hope in you and not been delivered? I cried out to you and you delivered me! I called upon your name and you heard my cry! You did not despise me oh Lord, but you covered my shame! While I lay broken and bleeding in the disgrace of my iniquity, you bound up my wounds and poured the oil of gladness into my heart. You are the Lord God of all flesh! Is there anything too hard for you? You make straight paths for those who put their trust in you! In the midst of the tempest you speak and the soul is calmed! Blessed are those who put their trust in you, whose hope is in the Lord!

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Dust To Dust?

From dirt, to monkey, to man and back to the dirt again! Is that really how life works? If you are someone who believes in Evolution (macro), then consider these questions: When you look at a building and see the design and intricacy, do you say that it came about by chance or that it had an intelligent builder behind it? Then how can you say that the human brain, the human eye and the world around you doesn't have something Intelligent behind it? When you look at your Honda and say, “I really want a Lexus,” do you blow it up and expect to get a Lexus? Then why believe in the Big Bang? Why is there so much uniformity in nature if it was all “by chance”? Where do reason and logic come from and how do you know that they are reasonable and logical? What is the meaning of life? Is there a meaning to life if Evolution is true? Do you think that rape, child abuse and unjust murder are wrong? Why do you think they are wrong and how do you know they are wrong? Is there a standard that you use to say that those things are wrong? Truth be told, there is a standard that is given to us by God to show us right from wrong. It is the Ten Commandments. We will ALL be judged by God’s Holy Law someday. Have you ever lied? Ever stolen? Ever looked with lust? Ever hated someone? If you have, then you are a liar, a thief, an adulterer (Matt. 5:28) and a murderer (1 John 3:15). You are a lawbreaker in God’s sight and therefore deserve punishment. That punishment is Hell Forever! That’s not God’s will for you though. Jesus Christ lived a sinless life, died on a cross and rose again. He did this so that you might be Cleansed from your sin, Pardoned from your punishment and Reconciled to God so you can have an Eternal Relationship with Him. Repent of your sins (turn from them) and Trust in Christ! Be SMART about your eternity!

Friday, February 27, 2009

Life Or Death!

It is one thing to trust Christ with your death, but an entirely different thing to trust him with your life!

Have you trusted Christ in your death? Are you trusting him with your life?

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Poetry Or Truth

Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6

Is this just poetry to you or is this truth?

Monday, February 23, 2009

A Puritan Prayer

Blessed Lord Jesus,
Before Your cross I kneel and see...
the heinousness of my sin,
my iniquity that caused You to be made a curse,
the evil that excites the severity of divine wrath.

Show me the enormity of my guilt by...
Your crown of thorns,
Your pierced hands and feet,
Your bruised body,
Your dying cries.

Infinite must be the evil and guilt--
which demands such a price! Sin is...
my malady, my monster, my foe, my viper,
born in my birth,
alive in my life,
strong in my character,
dominating my faculties,
following me as a shadow,
intermingling with my every thought,
the chain which holds my soul captive.

Sinner that I am, why should...
the sun give me light,
the air supply breath,
the earth bear my tread,
its fruits nourish me,
its creatures serve my needs?

Yet Your compassion yearns over me,
Your heart hastens to my rescue,
Your love endured my curse,
Your mercy bore my deserved stripes.

Let me walk humbly...
in the lowest depths of humiliation,
bathed in Your blood,
tender of conscience,
triumphing gloriously, as an heir of salvation.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Salvation Is Experiential, Not Theoretical!

I wasn’t raised in a Christian home as such, though my parents sent me to a Christian school. It was there that I heard all the bible stories, memorized scripture verses and learned that the answer to almost any question was ‘because Jesus died on the cross for my sins!’

During high school, I played in the worship band for our chapel services, attended some lunchtime prayer meetings, and knew enough scripture verses to bluff my way through. But I really had no idea! It made no sense! As the scripture says, the cross is foolishness to them that are perishing!

I would get up in the alter call and go forward to say the sinners prayer. I put my faith in the sincerity of my prayer, in the preacher, in going forward, in the tears I wept - nothing! I wanted a ‘get out of hell free’ card in my back pocket in case I might need it someday, but I wanted to live my own life. If I had to sum it up I was hoping Jesus might be my Savior (whatever that meant) but in no way would I let him be Lord. I had no idea what salvation was, or how to lay hold of it!

I got married at the age of twenty and treated my wife horribly. Attended church on and off – thought I was saved. Told everyone I was. Could quote scripture verses off the top of my head – so I must have been huh! Still didn’t have a clue really what it was all about. Had a whole swag of pet sins that I used to love. I had no idea how anything fitted together. God’s judgment, my sin, Jesus Christ, his death on the cross, repentance, faith... they were all pieces of random information, like a crazy jigsaw puzzle, that made no sense and I couldn’t for the life of me piece them together.

It has been said that salvation is revelation. You know, the light goes off. The penny drops. The pieces of the puzzle fall into place. What made no sense before, makes absolute sense after!

I began to see that I wasn’t the holy, self righteous, saved saint that I always thought that I was. God began to show me the sin that was trailing my life. I saw that my fruit was bad fruit – bitterness, anger, lust, impatience, malice, envy, materialism, covertness, selfishness, you name it. I began to see that a bad tree bears bad fruit! My fruit was bad, I finally began to understand! Still more time went by and I became more acutely aware of my failings, my shortcomings, my bad attitudes, the sins I had committed against my wife, against others and against God!

I began to get very afraid! I saw that I was hell deserving sinner, yet the words ‘Jesus died for my sins’ meant absolutely nothing to me. I did not understand what that meant. I did not understand what salvation was, or how to lay hold of it. The more I tried to understand, more frustrated I became. The more I tried to work to save myself, the more despondent I became. Have you ever been lost in the woods? I have! Before long your alarm turns into fear, and the fear turns into panic as you realize that you have no idea where you are, nor how to get out.

When I was lost in the woods as a young lad; alarm produced in me a response – I must get out I started so walking in a direction – any direction. When it became apparent I had no idea which direction I was going, the fear caused me to run and look at many directions. Realizing I was truly lost caused me to panic and after some time of blindly running to and fro; I had enough sense to call out for help. At the top of my lungs I began to scream until finally I heard the faint cry of my father through the thicket. As it turned out, I was within a half a kilometer from camp.

That’s how it was with my soul. I realized I was truly lost, up the proverbial creek without a paddle, and had absolutely no way of saving myself. I was truly afraid for my soul!

I cried out to the Lord, and He answered me! He came to me and rescued me. He gave me understanding. He opened my eyes to see the truth. The pieces of the puzzle began to fall effortlessly into place. The penny dropped. I saw Christ on the cross. I saw Him up there for me. I finally understood what ‘Jesus died on the cross for my sins’ actually meant!

If you’ve ever been lost in the woods, you’ll remember the relief you felt when you were found! It is no different with salvation; perhaps more so! When Christ saved me I had such a joy and peace that I had never known. My soul found that place of rest that Jesus promised when he said “Come to me all who are weary and heavy laden and I will give you rest”.

I began to truly repent for the first time and many of the things that I had struggled with were taken from my back. The heavy burden lifted. The sentence of death commuted!

Salvation is not an exercise of intellectual gymnastics, nor is it a mere mental ascent to various creeds or doctrines. It is a meeting with the eternal God! It is not theoretical, but experiential. Salvation is tangible. It is real.

If it was never real to you, then perhaps you never really found it! And to find it, you have to first realize you are lost!