March 21, 2019

“Looking unto Jesus.” Morning and Evening, Charles Spurgeon

Hey everyone! I was reading C. H. Spurgeon’s daily devotional, Morning and Evening, and came across this section. It is a wonderful read and I hope it encourages you to look to Christ alone and not at yourself and your short comings.

“Looking unto Jesus.”

Hebrews 12:2

It is ever the Holy Spirit’s work to turn our eyes away from self to Jesus; but Satan’s work is just the opposite of this, for he is constantly trying to make us regard ourselves instead of Christ. He insinuates, “Your sins are too great for pardon; you have no faith; you do not repent enough; you will never be able to continue to the end; you have not the joy of his children; you have such a wavering hold of Jesus.” All these are thoughts about self, and we shall never find comfort or assurance by looking within.  [Read more…]

Heart Cry Update: Follow-up from Japan: More Persecution for New Believer

This is a second update concerning the people of Japan from Hear Cry’s email updates. If you have never heard of Heart Cry and would like to know more check out their website at http://www.heartcrymissionary.com/ Please pray particularly for these believers who are being persecuted in Japan.

This update was sent to Matt Glass (Coordinator for Asia) from HeartCry missionary Luis in Japan a few weeks after the one above (names have been changed):

Brother, I wanted to give you an update about K_____’s trials and the attacks of satan. So you can join us in prayer.
[Read more…]

Proverbs 16:6-7

Hey everyone, I hope you all are doing well! Today’s “Daily Scripture” came from my daily reading through the ESV One Year Bible. I would encourage anyone that is not doing anything particular in your devotions to do this. If you like you can even listen to the sections online here: I do the one under “Every Day in the Word.” I trust this is an encouragement to you! If you start using this let me know, I’d love to hear feed back. I know today’s “Daily Scripture” is shorter than usual, but they are two great verses!

“By steadfast love and faithfulness iniquity is atoned for, and by the fear of the Lord one turns away from evil. When a man’s ways please the Lord, he makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.” -Proverbs 16:6-7

Grieving, Rejoicing that Osama bin Laden Is Dead By: Christopher Morgan

I am sure most everyone by now has heard the news of Osama bin Laden’s death. Here is an  article I came across on how we as Christians should respond to this. Enjoy!

Osama bin Laden is dead.

How do we as Christians respond?

As I watched the news reports, various passages came to mind–everything from Jesus’ teaching on loving and praying for enemies, to James’ forceful picture of a future slaughterhouse coming upon oppressors of God’s people. The more I reflect on it, the more I realize that my internal tension is similar to another one I have felt many times before–a tension related to the biblical doctrine of hell.

As strange as it seems, hell is depicted in the Bible both as tragedy and victory. Hell is tragic, as it is awful that people rebel against God and persistently spurn the Savior. God is “slow to anger,” “abounding in love and faithfulness” (Exod. 34:6-7), and does not take pleasure in the punishment of the wicked, just as he does not find pleasure in the existence of sin (Ezek. 18:23). Jesus likewise grieved and wept over human lostness, sin, and the impending judgment (Matt. 23:37; Luke 19:41; 23:34). The apostle Paul also shared this perspective, earnestly longing and praying for the conversion of his lost fellow-Jews, even to the point of being willing to undergo God’s wrath for them (Rom. 9:1-6; 10:1). That sinners go to hell is tragic and should break our hearts.

Yet hell is also portrayed as God’s triumph. Hell is linked to his righteous judgment and the day of Yahweh, even called “the day of God’s wrath” (Rom. 2:5). As such, hell answers (not raises) ultimate questions related to the justice of God. Through the coming wrath, judgment, and hell, God’s ultimate victory is displayed over evil, and his righteousness is vindicated. There is a “comfort” to hell (2 Thess. 1:5-11; James 5:1-6; Rev. 18-22), as its hard reality offers hope to and encourages perseverance in persecuted saints. God will judge everyone, and he will avenge his people; God will win in the end, and justice will prevail. And through his righteous judgment and ultimate victory, God will glorify himself, displaying his greatness and receiving the worship he is due (e.g., Rom. 9:22-23; Rev. 6:10, 11:15-18; 14:6-15:4; 16:5-7; 19:1-8).

Though the comparison is by no means perfect, and though it is on a much smaller scale, I tend to think that we can rightly grieve that Osama bin Laden opposed the true and living God and will be punished accordingly. But we also can rightly rejoice in the defeat and judgment upon people who are evil–and he was clearly evil and deserving of every punishment earth can give. The dancing in the streets may not merely be American nationalism, but an appropriate response to the partial display of human justice as we await the final and perfect display of divine justice in the coming age.

URGENT NEED! Lex Needs A Heart Transplant

This is the son of a girl that my parents went to school with. For the last 2 years we have read the heart-breaking updates of this precious little boy who now needs a heart transplant. The trials this family has faced have been unbelievable. Little Lex is being put on the transplant list today. But they have to raise money for their insurance. PLEASE consider helping. To donate you can go to http://www.wishuponahero.com/wishes/?id=908437. To read more about this family and their dear little boy, go to http://heartoflex.com/14/index.php?page/About-Lex.html.

From: Romans 8:28 The Sovereignty of God by Paul Washer

This is a wonderful quote taken from this video of a message from Paul Washer. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dA-7-18r3h0. This quote is quite different from the teaching of the health and wealth Christianity in many if not the majority of churches in America today. Please read and consider this as you do.

“The reason you can not see that He is working for your good is because you have the wrong definition of good. You have a cheap, cheap, cheap idea of good. You have a definition of good that is beneath you as a believer. It is beneath you. For the believer good is not comfort. For the believer good is not an easy road. For the believer good is not insurance, or security, or health, or wealth, or wisdom or even prosperity. None of that, again, as I said earlier, can satisfy a believer. For the believer, the good, the great summum bonum, is this; to be conformed to the image of Jesus Christ. Now here could be your problem; the reason for your misery. The reason for the fact that you’re not content with your wages, with your life, with your relationships, with everything around you. And the reason is this; you want something God does not want, and what God wants, you despise, you do not esteem. Is the greatest goal of you life to be conformed to the image of Christ? And then do you know, do you know, with an absolute certainty, unwavering certainty that God is sovereign over absolutely everything to bring this great summum bonum, or desire of his, to fruition. Because if your desire is correct, “I desire to be like Christ”, and you know that it will be done because God works all things according to his will, then your life will be as solid as a rock. And also you will see meaning in absolutely everything.” –Paul Washer

The hope of the psalmist that he would live in God’s house forever By:Walter Scott

These are the notes a friend of ours from Scottland/England used at a retirement home our church goes to very Lord’s Day evening. It was a great message and I thought I would share.

What’s the secret to a long life? Sometimes we read of news reports of people who have lived exceptionally long lives. One of two of you have reached 100. We are interseted to find out what is ther secret of a long life.

Some will say it is staying active, regular exercise, and a healthey diet. (In a Japanese island Okinawa, Okinawans are famously some of the longest-living peopl eon the planet with their ability to lead productive lives well into their eighties and nineties. Their moto is eat well, live well.)

Eunice Bowman, who was born in 1898 and has seen six monarchs on the throne, died peacefully in her sleep at Hillside Grange Care Home in Gatehead. The 111-year old, who was widowed twice, had six children, 17 grandchildren, 32 great grandchildren and five great-great grandchildren. Guinness World Records confirmed she was the UK’s oldest person. She puts her long life down to never snoking. Mrs. Bowman worked in a fish and chip shop well into her 80s and said, “a tipple of honey” helped keep her going.

Henry Patch  (WW1 veteran, aged 111)  puts his long life down to clean living. “I neither smoke, drink nor gamble. The tree sins, leave them alone,” he said. “For many years in Shropsire, I lived quite close to the Welsh mountains. Fresh air, no petrol and no cars, that’s the secret.”

A more important question  than the secret to a long life is the secret to Eternal Life. In Psalm 23 the writer was able to say with confidenc, “I will dwell in the house of hte Lord forever. ” Not only that but he know the  peae of God and comfort and strengththrough difficult times. He says, “Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil.”

How did he have that sure hope that he was going to live forever in God’s house in heaven.

A) You and I need a Shepherd The Bible says, “All we like sheep have gone astray, we have turned every one to his own way.” Isaiah 53:6. Instead of walking in God’s way, each of us like sheep have wandered off and gone o ur own way, as Frank Sinatra sang, “I did it my way.” Our rebellion (our lies, deceit, complaining, selfishness, aelf righteousness) has separated us from God, so we are not able to have that hope of life forever. We need a Sheperd because we are lost, haveing gone our own way. A Shephers to save us.

B) Who is this good Shepherd? He said “I am the good shepherd, the good shepherd gives life for the sheep” John 10:11. Out of love God’s Son came into this world to save us, to find us and bring us back to God. He tells us that he gives his life for his sheep. Such is his love that he is willing to s uffer on thehorrible cross to take away our si n.

C) Do you sense that you are far away from God? Call out to the Good Shepherd in prayer and ask him to forgive you, ask him to save you and give you that hope that the psalmist had. The Bible promise is that, “whoever calls upon the name of the Lord will be saved.” It is only throught the Good Shepherd you can know the peace of God that is spoken of in Psalm 23, the true comfor in trials and difficulties and the hopse of eternal life.

Better than I deserve: by Josh Williamson

A friend on facebook posted the below post  from his blog recently and I thought I would share it! I hope this encourages you to take every opportunity to share Christ with others.

“Recently I was talking to a friend of mine, and he was sharing a new way in which he opens the door for a Gospel presentation. He was telling me that when some asks him, “How are you?” He replies with, “Better than I deserve.” This in turn leads to the other person asking why that is the case.

Now the door is open and the Gospel can go forth. As my friend would then answer by showing that he is better than he deserves, since he deserves death and hell because of his sin, but by the death, burial and resurrection of Christ he has now experienced the forgiveness of sin.

Often times he said this has led to people asking more, and then he is into a full blown gospel presentation.

As I thought about this approach to evangelism, I couldn’t help but think about how this way of witness is very much focused on making the most of every opportunity, and I think it is something I will have to do as well. Even if I don’t have time to go into a in-depth witness encounter, the least I could do is give them a tract and explain how they also can be better than they deserve.

So what about you? Are you making the most of every oppurtunity to share about Christ? Each day we will encounter situations that will allow us to make known the good news of salvation. Will we step through that open door and explain why we are better than we deserve?”
Written by Josh Williamson

Stonewall Jackson’s Way- By: John Williamson Palmer

I was working on a character sketch on Stonewall Jackson and because I was on that subject I decided to post this poem. There is a song and this is actually a civil war song. Here is the link to the song. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tVYOMi5TDEI
COME, stack arms, men; pile on the rails;
Stir up the camp-fire bright!
No growling if the canteen fails:
We ’ll make a roaring night.
Here Shenandoah brawls along,
There burly Blue Ridge echoes strong,
To swell the Brigade’s rousing song,
Of Stonewall Jackson’s Way.
We see him now—the queer slouched hat,
Cocked o’er his eye askew;
The shrewd, dry smile; the speech so pat,
So calm, so blunt, so true.
The “Blue-light Elder” knows ’em well:
Says he, “That ’s Banks; he ’s fond of shell.
Lord save his soul! we ’ll give him—;” Well,
That ’s Stonewall Jackson’s Way.
Silence! Ground arms! kneel all! Caps off!
Old Massa’s going to pray.
Strangle the fool that dares to scoff:
Attention!—it’s his way.
Appealing from his native sod,
In forma pauperis to God,
“Lay bare Thine arm! Stretch forth Thy rod:
Amen!”—That ’s Stonewall’s Way.
He ’s in the saddle now. Fall in!
Steady! the whole brigade.
Hill’s at the ford, cut off; we ’ll win
His way out, ball and blade.
What matter if our shoes are worn?
What matter if our feet are torn?
Quick step! we’re with him before morn:
That ’s Stonewall Jackson’s Way.
The sun’s bright lances rout the mists
Of morning; and—By George!
Here ’s Longstreet, struggling in the lists,
Hemmed in an ugly gorge.
Pope and his Dutchmen!—whipped before.
“Bay’nets and grape!” hear Stonewall roar.
Charge, Stuart! Pay off Ashby’s score,
In Stonewall Jackson’s Way.
Ah, Maiden! wait and watch and yearn
For news of Stonewall’s band.
Ah, Widow! read, with eyes that burn,
That ring upon thy hand.
Ah, Wife! sew on, pray on, hope on!
Thy life shall not be all forlorn.
The foe had better ne’er been born,
That gets in Stonewall’s Way.

Count the Cost

Today was a great Lord’s Day! Dad preached on counting the cost of following Christ. The message was very conviction for my life.

Today I do not think people in America  know what counting the cost really means. Only in America can you go to church a couple of times a week say your a Christian, and live exceptionally moral during the week and  your ok and no one really bothers you. But in other countries around the world to be a Christian is so much more. It is to have to love Christ, more than you love you family. There you have to love Christ more than you love your job, your comfort, and your friendships and even your own life, because you will be persecuted and you have to love Christ so much more. See, to be a Christian in a country like India comes with a cost, and to be a Christian we must be willing to carry that cross. But carrying that cross and forsaking all in this life for Christ name sake is not in vain. There is a reward, and that reward is eternal life with God. The pain and persecution you have suffered on this earth is incomparable to the joy we will have in Christ.

So if you are a Christian this applies to you in that you should currently be counting the cost and you should be living totally for God with nothing hindering your ultimate love for him.

And if you are unsaved count the cost to follow Christ, because even the high cost to follow him does not compare to the cost of rejecting Him.

I pray this has been an encouragement to you and that God uses this to work in your life. As soon as dad gets his sermon up I will post a link to it if anyone would like to hear it.