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")