About the Author

Thomas Ray Floyd was born in 1953 in Simpson County, Mississippi, the son of Roy Thomas Floyd and Lina Sue Shows Floyd. Thomas Ray's mother was a member of a Primitive Baptist church, and he cut his teeth on the doctrines of distinguishing grace.

When he was a small boy, his father was converted to Christ and became a member of a Missionary Baptist Church. Thomas Ray joined the church of his father when he was 13 years old, and thought of himself as a Christian. The doctrines of grace that he had heard as a child continued to be precious to him and when he became an adult, he joined a Primitive Baptist Church. When he was 27, Thomas Ray made his first effort to preach the gospel in public and was ordained to the full functions of the ministry in 1985. In 1986 he was convinced under the preaching of Rolfe Barnard (by tapes from Mt. Olive Tape Library), the written sermons of Spurgeon, and the ministry of Elder Zack Guess that he had been a false professor and cried out in agony of soul to the Lord Jesus Christ to have mercy and truly save him. And He did! Floyd then began to preach the gospel as he had been taught of the Lord.

Floyd has pastored churches in Mississippi, Louisiana, and Tennessee and until recently was pastor of a church plant known as "Particular Baptist Fellowship." He and his wife Brenda presently attend Zion Baptist Church at Polkville, Mississippi, pastored by Elder Glen Hopkins. The pulpit ministry of Zion Baptist Church can be heard at Sermonaudio.com.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

The Faithfulness of God in Forgiving Sin

(Article for publication week of 12-28-2011 AD)

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (I John 1:9).

As we consider the faithfulness of God, we delight to write to you to confirm to you that God is faithful in forgiving sin.

Are you a sinner? Has the Lord taught you that you are the chief of sinners? Have you learned from the word and by the Spirit that you are a loathsome wretch in the sight of the Thrice Holy God? Do mourn in your very soul because of your sins? Do you “roar like a bear” because you feel that you are too sinful for God to save you? Well. If I am describing your case, I have some good news for you- God is faithful and just to forgive sinners for their sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

It was for sinners that Christ died. He came not to call the righteous, but to call sinners to repentance. The scriptures sweetly tell us that Christ received sinners and ate with them (Luke 15:2). “ ‘Twas for the guilty Thou didst die, and I a sinner stand.”

Christ died for the filthiest of sins. All sin is filthy. Christ died for disobedience to parents. He died for fornicators and adulterers. He died for filthy sodomites. He died for liars. He died for murderers. He died for thieves. He died for railers. He died for the covetous. He died for idolaters. He died for blasphemers. He died for Sabbath breakers. He died for drunks and dope heads. He died for vile wretches like you and me. Christ died to justify the ungodly (Romans 4:5).

Christ died for many sins. All the guilt of all those who would ever repent and believe in Him was transferred to His precious Person by imputation, and He satisfied the just and holy wrath of God forever when He died on the cross and rose again the third day. Should you repent and believe in Christ, this very moment your sins are all forgiven.

Christ is willing and able to save all who will truly repent of their sins and come to Him by faith. You will never find an instance recorded in scripture where Christ ever turned away one who came to Him broken hearted for sins and pleading mercy. Now, He did turn away, and still does the self-righteous. If you still love your sins and want to continue in them, I haven’t been writing to you. But if you are broken hearted and contrite and wanting to be saved from your sins, my message is for you. Christ is faithful and just to forgive you for your sins- and to clean you up! When Christ saves a sinner, He does not leave that sinner wallowing in his sins, but rather He cleans him up and makes him into a new creature.

Do you want to be saved from your sins? Do you want God to forgive you for your sins? Do you long to be free from your sins and thoroughly cleansed from them? Well, come to Christ right now without delay. Confess to Him that you are a wretched sinner deserving of the lowest hell and throw yourself on His mercy. He is a faithful Saviour who saves and forgives.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

The Faithfulness of God

(Article for publication week of 12-21-2011 AD)

“It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is Thy faithfulness” (Lamentations 3:22-23).

Having declared the veracity of God in our last several articles, we now proceed to declare the faithfulness of God. “Great is Thy faithfulness”! This is a most comforting truth for God’s people- our God is faithful, and great in that faithfulness.

First of all we see the faithfulness of God in His governance of the world. The world is upheld by Jehovah, the faithful God. We have no fears regarding the physical world for we know that God is governing it. The earth is held in its proper place in the universe by the power of our faithful God. We have no concerns that the earth will fall off its axis, or that the sun will burn out, or that the moon will crash into the earth. All these things are governed by our sovereign and faithful God. Fall, winter, spring and summer will continue to follow each other until God is ready to fold things up and usher in the New Heavens and the New Earth.

God is faithful in providing for His people. The Psalmist declared in the 37th Psalm that he had not seen the righteous forsaken nor his seed begging bread. God rained down manna from heaven for His people. He fed Elijah by the instrumentality of the ravens. He provided for a widow woman once by not letting the flour barrel, and oil cruse become empty. He ordinarily provides for His people by means of labour, but whether ordinarily, or extraordinarily, God will provide for His Own. He cares for the little birds who have neither souls nor reason; will He not much more care for you, His people saved by grace, who have immortal souls and the power of reason?

And God is faithful in keeping His covenant. God made a covenant with Noah and his posterity after the Flood and signified it by the rainbow. Every time we see a beautiful rainbow we are reminded of the faithfulness of God in not sending another Flood over the whole earth. But His faithfulness in His covenant of grace is even more glorious than that! God made a covenant with Himself in the everlasting, that is from before the foundation of the world (Hebrews 13:20), whereby He gave a chosen people to His Son to save. The Three Eternal Persons of the Godhead were involved in this covenant. The Eternal Son agreed to become a Man to work out a perfect Righteousness for all those the Father had given Him. The Holy Spirit agreed to effectually call, regenerate, convert, sanctify and preserve all those the Son redeemed. Not one part of this everlasting covenant has ever failed because it was made by our faithful God. The Son was faithful in doing the absolute will of the faithful Father. The Holy Spirit has been, and will continue to be faithful in the calling of every elect person for whom the Son died. Not one has ever failed to be saved that was ordained to this salvation in the covenant made by our faithful God. The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are faithful in their love to all the blood bought saints. Not one who is truly saved by our faithful God will ever be lost, not because of our faithfulness, but because of God’s faithfulness.

“Great is Thy faithfulness”!

Christ, the Truth

(Article for publication week of 12-14-2011 AD)

“I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father but by Me” (John 14:6).

Much could be said concerning Christ being the only way to God. It is only through the suretyship and mediation of Christ that any can be saved. Much could also be said regarding Christ being the life, for it is only by salvation through Him that we have everlasting life. However, the focus of our attention this week is in this statement, Christ proclaims He is “The Truth.” Now, we know that Christ proclaimed the truth, but what does it mean that Christ is “The Truth”?

First of all, this is a plain statement of Christ’s Deity. He is God Who cannot lie (Titus 1:2). It is Divine Impossibility for God to lie (Hebrews 6:18). When our Lord says, “I am the Truth”, He is declaring that “in Him is light“, and there is no darkness at all in Him (I John 1:5). One of the many proofs of the Deity of Christ is that He has all the attributes of God. The veracity of Christ is indisputable proof that he is God. Christ is infinitely more than a truthful man, He is the Truth.

Secondly, this is a declaration of the salvation that is in Christ and nowhere else. The Lord Jesus Christ is the gospel, which is the truth. John 1:17 tells us “the law was given by Moses, but grace and truth came by Jesus Christ.” Our Lord is eternal God, but He became a Man. “The Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the father,) full of grace and truth.” It is the Person of Christ Who saves poor sinners. He became flesh that he might work out a perfect righteousness for His people. He actively obeyed the law of God, so that God counts the believer in Christ as being obedient to His law. He suffered as a sin bearer to satisfy the justice of God and turn away His holy wrath from all who believe in Christ, Who is the Truth. In the Lord Jesus Christ “mercy and truth are met together” (Psalm 85:10). This is the truth of the gospel.

Salvation is in Christ Alone, who is truth Personified. Salvation is not in the schemes and efforts of man, it is in a glorious Person. Christ is the Person of the Gospel. Without Christ, we have no gospel. But because of Christ, we have a glad announcement to make. “We preach Christ” (I Corinthians 1:23). We preach the One Who is the Truth. Christ, Who is the way, the truth and the life has finished the work of salvation. Salvation is in Him, and Him alone. May the Holy Spirit bless you to receive the Truth.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

God’s Enduring Truth

(Article for publication week of 12-7-2011 AD)

“For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting; and His truth endureth to all generations” (Psalm 100:5).

The God Who cannot lie has been pleased to reveal Himself to us by His inspired and infallible word, that is the Bible. The Bible is the truth of God. It is “His truth.” The inspiration and infallibility of the Bible is inseparable from the very veracity of God.

By inspiration of scripture we mean that God breathed His word into the human instruments that actually penned it. God used several methods of inspiration in transmitting His word to us. The Ten Commandments were actually engraved by God’s Own finger (Exodus 31:18). Much of the first five books of the Bible, perhaps all of it, were mechanically dictated by God to Moses (Exodus 20:1). God gave the prophets a message to declare, and then commanded them to write it out (Isaiah 1:1). The Holy Spirit gave the apostles perfect recall of Christ’s life and words so that when they wrote out the gospels they had perfect memory of what the Holy Spirit inspired them to write John 14:26). When John wrote the Book of Revelation, God gave him visions and then instructed him to write out what he saw (Revelation 1:19). Regardless of the particular instrumentality and mechanics that God employed in the inspiration of the Bible, it is all ultimately His word. It is His truth, not the opinions or fancies of men.

The character of God requires an infallible Bible. He is the God Who cannot lie (Titus 1:2). Beware of false prophets who suggest that we cannot be sure of the integrity of the Bible. Beware of modern translations that have notes that question the authenticity of any part of the scriptures. All such is the work of the devil who tempted our first parents by asking, “Hath God said?” God has magnified His word above all His name (Psalm 138:2). To question the word of God is to question the very truthfulness of God. An honest man is rightfully offended when any one questions his word. How much more so the God of the Bible Who cannot lie and has magnified His word above all His name!

The God who cannot lie has promised to preserve His word to all generations. As long as the world stands, God’s word shall endure. The enemies of Christ have many times and at many places sought to destroy the word. The devil and his ministers continue to attack it. But the Bible endures by the sovereign providence of our great God. God is so determined to sanctify His people by the word of truth that He shall preserve His word for them.

Dear readers, when you open up your Bibles thank God for its inspiration, infallibility, preservation and translation. The Bible in your hands is a testimony to the truthful character of God. God cannot lie. It is Divine Impossibility for Him so to do. Never doubt the word of God, for it was written and preserved by Him Who cannot lie.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Sanctified by the Truth

(Article for publication week of 11-30-2011 AD)

“Sanctify them through Thy truth: Thy word is truth” (John 17:17). These words are found in our Lord’s High Priestly prayer recorded for us in John 17. The Lord Jesus Christ is the High Priest of His elect people. If you are a believer in Christ, the Lord Jesus Christ prayed for you in John 17, and He intercedes for you even at this present moment (Romans 8:34).

Our Great High Priest prayed for the sanctification of His elect people. They were set apart for God’s use in eternity by the unalterable decree of election (Ephesians 1:4; Jude 1). They were set apart (sanctified), by the redeeming work of Christ (Hebrews 10:10,14). And they are sanctified (set apart) by the regenerating work of the Holy Spirit (II Thessalonians 2:13-14). Their sanctification is progressive as they are set apart from the world by God working in them of His good pleasure, so that they work out their own salvation (Philippians 2:12-13).

The Word is the means that God uses in the sanctification of His people. Note well that God’s word is THE truth. Our Lord did not say that the Word contains the truth. This is a most vital point in our day and time. The word of God has been under attack from the very beginning when Satan asked Eve, “hath God said?” Satan is still trying to get you to doubt the word of God.

The present attack on the word of God is very subtle. One of Satan’s schemes has been the proliferation of modern translations (so called). Actually this began back in the 19th century when two heretics, Westcott and Hort, compiled a new Greek text to replace the Received Text. Most all the modern translations are based on this corrupt text based on the Alexandrian texts, which had long been rejected by the True Church. These corrupt texts have subtle attacks on the deity of Christ. Most of the modern translations have notes that question the inspiration of much of the Bible. Some of these notes say things like, “older and better manuscripts”, etc. (The reason they are “older” is because they were never used by true believers, and believing scholars do not believe they are “better”.)

God’s word is THE TRUTH. He promised that He would preserve His word for all generations (Psalm 100:5). The God that cannot lie promised that though heaven and earth would pass away His words (note well the plural) would not pass away (Matthew 24:35). God is determined that His people will be sanctified by the word of truth.

One great test of a person’s standing with God is whether or not he believes the word of God. Dear reader, if you do not believe the word of God YOU ARE NOT SAVED. Now you mark that well friend. If you value your eternal soul, read the word of God, and BELIEVE it. There is no salvation apart from the truth of God’s word. It is the means that God has appointed for the sanctification of His people. Do you suppose that God would ordain sanctification through the word and then hide it from His people? This is the theory of liberals and “moderates” today. They will have you think that you cannot be sure if the Bible is God’s word or not. Take my text to heart. Our Lord plainly said, “Thy word is truth.”

The English-speaking people have been blessed for four hundred years with a faithful translation of the inspired word. Our Authorized (a.k.a. King James) version has been honored by the Lord in the sanctification of His people.

I have two booklets I want you to have absolutely free- “By What Standard”, and “The Excellence of the Authorised Version.” If you will call me at 601-927-5070, or email me at brick Floyd@bellsouth.net, I will get them into your hands so you can study this most important subject for yourself.

May the Lord bless you all, my dear readers.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

The Truthfulness of God

(Article for publication week of 11-23-2011 AD)

“In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie promised, before the world began” (Titus 1:2).

Our text presents us with a Divine Impossibility- God cannot lie. This Divine impossibility is no limitation on God’s omnipotence, but rather a very strong declaration of His holy character. It is impossible for God to quit being God. That ought to be self-evident, and I invite you to meditate on it and let it sink in. God cannot quit being God, and He will not quit being the Thrice Holy, unchangeable God, and so He cannot lie.

Be sure, God has never gone back on any promise He has ever made. There is nothing in His ways, character, or actions that have ever needed concealment or covering up. Truth is so much of what and Who God is that the God Man proclaimed, “I am the way, the truth and the life.” God will not, yea, cannot lie.

Now this is a most comforting truth for the Christian. Our God is a promise making and promise keeping God. Our text has special reference to the promise that God made with and to Himself in eternity. God made a promise to and with Himself before the morning of time. I love the words of our text this week! “Before the world began”! Oh! What a delightful word to sound forth to the Lord’s people who know their own weakness! God promised eternal life before the world began, before there was a man to try to help Him or try to take any credit for salvation!

We might well ask, “To whom was this promise made, seeing as how it was made before the world began?” The obvious Biblical answer is that God made this promise with and to Himself. God made an everlasting covenant before the world began to give eternal life to a multitude of Adam’s race. This covenant was between the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. God gave a people to Christ for Him to save. Christ tells us of it in John 6:37-39. “All that the Father giveth to me shall come to me, and him that cometh to me, I will in no wise cast out. For I came down from heaven, not to do mine Own will, but the will of Him that sent me. And this is the Father’s will which hath sent me, that of all which He hath given me, I should lose nothing, but raise it up again at the last day.” God the Father promised God the Son that He should have an innumerable seed. The Son eternally agreed and promised to become Surety for all His people’s obligations to God. At the appointed time, Christ came into the world to redeem us from our sins, as He had promised before the world began. God the Holy Spirit, eternally proceeding from the Father and the Son, promised in eternity to impart salvation to all this chosen and blood bought host, thus they shall all come to Christ as he said.

Praise the Lord, salvation is not dependant on the fickle will of man, but on God Who cannot lie. Salvation has been an accomplished fact from eternity in the mind of God, and not one part shall fail, because again, God cannot lie. The Christian’s hope is well grounded, as our text says, for it is in God Who cannot lie, not in puny man.

God cannot lie!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

God’s Elect Inseparable from His Love

(Article for publication week of 11-16-2011 AD)

“For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 8:38-39).

We come this week to conclude our series on the love of God, and we have a most fitting text with which to summarize and conclude. Nothing in God’s universe is able to separate us from God’s sovereign, everlasting , saving love.

First of all, we notice that it is the elect of God who cannot be separated from the love of God. My text belongs not to the reprobate, but only to the chosen of God. The “us” of Romans 8:38-39 refers to those who believe in Christ through the electing love of the Father, the justifying love of the Son, and the regenerating love of the Holy Spirit. To these, the Apostle Paul writes to comfort their often despondent hearts that nothing can separate them from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus their Lord.

In verse 35, 38, and 39 Paul mentions some things which in and of themselves would be catastrophic. But none of these things can separate God’s people from His love for it is in the Eternal Son of God that we are loved. God will no more cease to love His children than He will cease to Love His Eternal Son! It is in fact a Divine Impossibility for the Father to quit loving the Son of His eternal love. The Son is the express image of the Father and One with Him. The Son of God was eternally in the Bosom of the Eternal Father (John 1:18). The great Triune God has eternally interacted with Himself in love. This eternal interaction moved God the Father to choose a people in God the Son. They were eternally united to the Son by eternal and unalterable election. “They on His sacred Bosom lay, loved with an everlasting love” (John Kent). Believer in Christ, God the Father loves you because He sees you in His Son! It is unthinkable that God would ever cease to love one who is in Christ.

The preceding verses in Romans 8 are proofs of God’s love for us. God causes all things to work for good to those who love Him (Romans 8:28). The believer is connected to God by His golden chain of grace (Romans 8:29-30). God is for the believer, so it is futile for any to try to oppose the believer (Romans 8:31). God loves His elect so much that he spared not His Own Son that they might have everlasting life. Not one charge may be brought against a child of God, for he is justified by God Himself. None can condemn a believer in Christ for Christ was delivered for his offences and rose again for his justification and is now at the right hand of God interceding for him. Nothing can separate us from the love of God!

Not one child of God shall be lost having been loved by God. The final perseverance of all the elect is a certainty because of God’s everlasting love. Though believers are assaulted continually by the world, the flesh and the devil, we shall persevere to the end, because of God’s unchangeable love. Though believers slip and slide and falter and fail, God’s love is unchanging. And even our own sins cannot separate us form the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Thank God our salvation does not depend on our faithfulness, but rather on His unchanging Love!

Christian, God cannot love you any more than He has in eternity. He loved you before you loved Him, for He loved you in Christ. God loves you as He loves His Own Son! God cannot love you any less than He loves you now because He loved you before the foundation of the world, and He is unchangeable. There is no variableness nor shadow of turning with Him. Nothing can ever separate us from the love of God which is in His Son, Christ Jesus our Lord! Now , you can believe that because it is written in the word of God!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

God’s Love for Sinners

(Article for publication week of 11-9-2011 AD)

“But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

Dear reader, has God taught you that you are a sinner? Have you seen yourself as hopelessly lost? Have you reached the end of your rope as far as salvation is concerned? Has your heart been broken because of your wretched condition? Have you tried saving yourself by your own efforts and seen that you were getting worse instead of better? Well, I have good news for you. God loves sinners!

The gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ is a message for sinners. It is the good news of the commendation of God’s love toward sinners. The gospel is a declaration of what Christ has done for sinners. The gospel is not a message of morality or ethics, but it is the message of how God justifies the ungodly (Romans 4:5).

God’s love is an amazing thing is it not? Just to think that God loved us when we were His enemies! God loved us when we were unlovable. He loved us when we were ungodly and vile. He loved us when we did not love Him. This is most glorious! God Who is thrice holy, loved sinners who were unholy, unrighteous and ungodly. God would have been perfectly just to hate us rather than love us, but He commendeth His love toward us.

Now see the breadth, and length, and depth, and height of God’s love for sinners. He loved sinners so much that he gave His only begotten Son for their salvation. Christ died for sinners, not for the righteous. The Lord Jesus Christ is the co-equal and co-eternal Son of God. He became a Man to die for a sinner like you and me.

“Christ died for sinners.” Why must the spotless Lamb of God die? He died as a Substitute for sinners. Our sins had separated us from God. God , being infinitely holy and inflexible in His justice must of necessity punish sinners. His law demanded it, and the unchangeable God would not, could not quit being God, so He must punish the sinner, except a Substitute be found. In all of God’s heaven not another was found that could die for sinners. No angel could have been a sin bearer for those that God was determined to save. The substitute must be one of us. On earth not a man was found who could be the substitute, for every man was a sinner himself. No man can pay for his own sins, much less the sins of others; much, much less the sins of the great multitude that God was determined to save.

So God was manifest in the flesh. The Son of God became the Son of Man. Infinite God, became one of us to die in our “room and stead”. Christ died on an old rugged cross to pay the sin debt of all the Father had given Him in the covenant of Grace (see John 6:37, first clause). We may also say it this way: Christ died for all who would ever believe in Him (John 37 again, second clause). Christ died for sinners.

Now, if you know yourself to be a sinner, and want to be saved from your sins, look to Christ alone. There is salvation in Him and nowhere else, for God loved sinners to such a degree that He gave his Son to die for such in my case and yours.

Have you ever heard of a love greater than this?!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

God’s Love Displayed by Chastening

(Article for publication week of 10-26-2011 AD)

“For whom the Lord loveth, He chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom He receiveth” (Hebrews 12:6).

This is a most comforting and encouraging text for the children of God. We are assured that when God lays His chastening rod upon us, that it is a mark of His everlasting, saving, and discriminating love.

I will point out first of all to you that this text is further proof that God does not love the whole world. The unsaved world, the world of the ungodly, knows nothing of chastening. Only God’s children are chastened by the Lord. The text plainly and clearly declares that God’s chastening is limited to those He loves. So take heart dear Christian- God corrects you because he loves you!

Secondly, I want you to note well that the text proves that Christians are not yet perfected. We will not attain sinless perfection until the state of glory when we will be eternally in the presence of the Lord. Christians are presently being sanctified by the Lord, and He is in the process of forming us into the likeness of Christ. We will one day be perfected and made so that we will be unable to sin, but we are not there yet. Since we still have many imperfections, and subject to many faults, the Lord chastens us for our profit that we might be partakers of His holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.

Thirdly, I want to emphasize that chastening is not the same as punishment, at least not in a penal sense. I have often heard God’s professed people express when they perceived they were being chastened that they were “paying” for their sins. One dear sister, who I believe is now with Christ, said to me in an affliction that she considered as the Lord’s chastening, “God is punishing me for my sins.” I want believers to know that Christ was punished for their sins and paid the penalty due for them. The unbeliever must be punished in hell eternally, for he has no sin bearer. But not so for the children of God. Christ underwent the punishment due unto us for every sin we would ever commit. Christ was set forth to be a propitiation for us (Romans 3:25), which means He was punished for our sins and turned away the Holy wrath of God from the believer. Our chastening is for our eternal profit as God makes us partakers of His holiness, but it is not punishment, again I say in a penal sense. Chastening is indeed painful, and it may be so painful that we perceive it is punishment. But be assured, Christian, Christ has borne all your sins, and underwent all the punishment due unto you.

Our Heavenly Father loves His children so much, that He will not let them go in sin. He corrects us with His chastening rod so that we might walk with Him and be obedient to Him. Dear child of God, when you are being chastened, rejoice that God loves you! Chastening, correction is a sure proof that you are an object of God’s love. Let us submit to chastening with humility, knowing that it is all for our eternal good.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Do you Love God or the World?

(Article for publication week of 10-19-2011 AD)

“Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him” (I John 2:15).

We have been writing on the attributes of God for quite some time, and our most recent articles have been on the love of God. We have shown the sovereignty and efficaciousness of God’s love, and have posed the question, “do you love God?” This week we will push the question further and continue to test your profession.

It is a dangerous thing to go on in a false profession. Our Lord said in Matthew 7:21-23 that MANY will be exposed at the end as false professors and hear their awful doom from the Lord, “depart from me”! Dear reader, I beseech you to put your own profession to the test to see if you are really converted. Today there is time to repent of a false profession and come to the Dear Saviour for salvation, but if you die in your false profession, it will be eternally too late.

Now, our text here in I John exposes the false profession of multitudes. There are multitudes all around us who claim to be saved, and think they are saved, but their affections show they have never been truly saved, for their affections are all bound up in the world, rather than in Christ.

We have a generation of church members and professed believers who can get along with the world right well. They know how to “go along to get along.” They amuse themselves the same way that the world does. They dress like the world and talk like the world and think like the world and live like the world. This generation of church members thinks that the casinos are perfectly compatible with Christianity. And I could go on and on with specifics of the careless and worldly way that most professed believers live in our day.

Now there are many that are teaching that such worldly folks are just “carnal” Christians. My dear readers, there is no such thing taught in the word of God. Those who are given over to carnality are not saved. There are just two kinds of people- saved people and lost people; spiritually minded people and carnal minded people; believers and unbelievers; Christians and non- Christians. The Bible has no third category for you to try to put yourself in. You either love the Lord, or you love the world.

Then I have heard some lament over worldly church members and say, “well , they just need to be taught.” No they don’t need to be taught, they need to be saved. You don’t have to teach a saved person to love God; the Holy spirit taught him that when He converted him.

Now, be sure you get it- there is no middle ground between love for God and love for the world. My text plainly says that if you love the world, the love of God is not in you. All who do not profess Christ are indicted by my text. My exposure of false profession is no consolation to the non-professor. You who will not believe in Christ and profess Him among men are just as lost as the hypocrite in the church. But, be sure the hypocrite will be finally exposed. You may imitate some Christian virtues, but if you are unregenerate, you cannot truly love God.

Perhaps the truth has alarmed someone today. We surely hope so. Whether you are a lost church member or one who has never professed the name of Christ, the remedy is the same- repent of your sins and believe in Christ for salvation. Come to Him now, for He will in no wise cast out the repenting believer.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Do You Love God?

(Article for publication week of 10-12-2011 AD)

“For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments: and His commandments are not grievous” (I John 5:3).

Last week we showed how God’s love is efficacious, and how that when God sheds His love abroad in the heart of and elect sinner, that sinner will in turn love God (I John 4:19). If a person truly loves God, it is certain that person is loved of God.

Now, the question for you is, “Do you love God?” Most of you will answer in the affirmative, I imagine, but you had better read this week’s text before you say so. Just saying you love God, does not mean that you in reality love Him. Many people have nice thoughts about God , perhaps, and may feel good feelings about God, but that does not mean that you love God. Most people who say they love God, love a god of their own imagination , rather than the true God, that is the God of the Bible. The God of the Bible is thrice holy, sovereign, omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent and absolutely just. The God of the Bible hates sin, and will punish sinners. Unless you love the only true God (John 17:3), you do not love God, and you are not saved.

Our text this week tells us how we may prove whether we love God or not. Those who love God will keep His commandments. Unless you are sincerely and consistently keeping God’s commandments, you do not love God, no matter what gushy feelings you think you have. God’s moral law revealed in His Ten Commandments are not grievous, and the world would be heaven on earth if all men obeyed them. I emphasize, if you love God, you will be sincerely and consistently keeping God’s commandments.

Our text is not suggesting that a sinner can save himself by his own obedience. Remember last week’s text, “we love Him because He first loved us” (I John 4:19). Obedience is not the procuring cause of salvation in any sense, but rather the indispensable evidence that one is saved.

This is where works mongers miss the boat entirely, by mistaking the evidence for the cause. Salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone , in Christ Alone (Romans 3:21-28). It is not by works in any sense (Ephesians 2:8-9). But the believer is the workmanship of Christ created unto good works which God has before ordained that they should walk in (Ephesians 2:10). So be sure you get it straight, obedience to God is not what saves you, but the evidence that you are saved.

Nor is our text suggesting that anyone can perfectly keep the commandments of God. Even if you do keep all the commandments outwardly (which I seriously doubt), our Lord says that if you break them in thought, or motive you are guilty (see Matthew 5:21-32 for example) of breaking God’s law. The believer keeps God’s law imperfectly, but sincerely and consistently. He is always repenting that he is coming short of what God requires, and he is continually clinging to Christ Who kept the law for His people and was punished by God in our room and stead to redeem us from the curse of the law (Galatians 3:13).The believer delights in the law of God after the inward man (Romans 7:22). He says with the Psalmist , “O Lord how love I Thy law” (Psalm 119:97).He loves the law of God because it reveals the perfections of the God He loves. He loves the law because His Saviour satisfied all its just demands for him. His love for God is proven by his sincere and consistent, though imperfect obedience to the commandments of God.

We have plenty of “The Attributes of God” by A.W. Pink left, and if you will call me at 601-927-5070, I will get you one. I look forward to hearing from many of you this week.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

God’s Efficacious Love

(Article for publication week of 10-5-2011 AD)

“We love Him, because He first loved us” (I John 4:19). It is a good thing that God first loved us, for none of us loved God by nature. By nature every one is a hater of God (Romans 1:30), not a lover of God. So dear reader, if you truly love God, it was because He first loved you.

God loved us when we were yet in our sins (Romans 5:8), and most unlovable. This is an amazing thing! That God should ever have loved any of Adam’s fallen race. We were all His sworn enemies, and at enmity with Him, yet He loved us and gave His Son to die for our sins that we might be justified in His holy sight.

God loved us when we did not even have a being in ourselves. God loved His people before they even existed, for we read in Jeremiah 31:3 that God loved us with an everlasting love. In vast eternity past God set His affections on His people and chose them in His Son. There never was a time when God did not love His people. God in His great sovereignty willed to love a people and save them with an everlasting salvation. It was His sovereign will that His coequal and eternal Son, the Lord Jesus Christ would be their surety and assume all their obligations and provide a perfect righteousness for them.

Now since, God loved us when we were yet sinners, and since He loved us before we loved Him, and since He loved us from before the foundation of the world, He will never cease to love us. Nothing can ever separate one loved by the Lord from His everlasting love. Remember God is unchangeable (Malachi 3:6). Having loved the believer from eternity, His love will never change, nor cease. This is the reason that it is impossible for one that is genuinely saved to ever lose his salvation, because God loved us first, and that from eternity. Perish the thought that one loved with an everlasting love could ever be lost! Now , if the Bible had said, “God loves us because we first loved Him”, then we might understand that a fickle man might change in his love for God, and thereby God cease to love him. But thank God, that is not what the Bible says! It says “we love Him because He first loved us”!

Notice carefully also that our text says that the very reason the believer loves God is because God first loved the believer. God’s love was the moving Cause of Christ making an atonement for us. And God’s love was the moving cause of Him sending His Spirit into our hearts to regenerate us and make us new creatures in Christ. Romans 5:5 says that His love has been shed abroad in the believer’s heart. When that love is shed abroad in the elect sinner’s heart, that sinner begins to love God. That sinner loves God in His Tri-Personality. That sinner loves all the attributes of God as they are discovered in the Bible. That sinner comes to love God’s law and His gospel.

Dear reader, do you love God? Well mark it down, it is because He first loved you! You would not, nor could not love God had He not put that in you by regeneration. False professors may imitate some Christian virtues, but be sure, no unconverted person can or will love God. Thank the Lord for His efficacious love!

I am really enjoying writing this series of articles on the attributes of God. If you would like to study more beyond the limits of these brief articles, I want to give you absolutely free a small booklet, “The Attributes of God” by A.W. Pink. Just call me or email this week and I will see that you get one.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The World of John 3:16

(Article for publication week of 9-28-2011 AD)

“For God so loved the world, that he gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 3:16).

Last week we showed you three plain texts that declare that God does not love everybody (Romans 9:13; Psalm 11:5; and Proverbs 6:19). So how does one of the best known texts in the Bible fit into this?

First of all, you need to note well that the text does not in any way teach universal salvation. That should be plain from the multitude of texts that plainly say that the vast majority of the human race will finally spend eternity in the regions of woe. The promise of salvation is limited to those who believe in God’s coequal and eternal Son.

Secondly, the word “world” generally has a limited meaning, and must be determined by the context in which it is used. For instance, our Lord in His high priestly prayer in John 17 prayed in verse 9, “I pray not for the world, but for them which Thou hast given me.” There is a world for whom Christ does not intercede. Further, we read in II Peter 2:5 that God sent the flood “on the world of the ungodly.” Since there is a world of the ungodly, there must be also a world of the godly. This is the world that is under consideration in John 3:16, that is the world of the godly, also known as the world of God’s elect. This is the world that God loved with an everlasting love, and the world for whom Christ died. It is the same world spoken of in John 1:29; “behold the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world.” It is evident that Christ did not take way the sins of all men universally, for multitudes were already in hell when these words were uttered by John the Baptist, and multitudes more have been sent there since, and multitudes more will be sent there. Christ took away the sins of His sheep, not the sins of the whole world (John 10:15). The world of John 3:16 and John 1:29, is not the world of John 17:9 and II Peter 2:9. God so loved the world of His elect (synonymous with “whosoever believeth in Him), that He gave His Son for their salvation.

There will be a world of believing sinners saved by sovereign grace, because God loved them with an everlasting love, and the Lamb of God made a full atonement for them. Thus we see that John 3:16 is in full accord with Romans 9:13.

Now dear believer in Christ, John 3:16 is where your comfort stands. But a warning must be sounded to the unbeliever. You may not presume to be included in the world of John 3:16 whilst thy hard and unrepentant heart rejects Christ and salvation through Him. We repeat, God does not love everybody. May He have mercy on some today, and may the Holy Spirit work effectually in your heart that you may be given the gift of faith to believe in Christ for your salvation.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Does God Love Everybody?

(Article for publication week of 9-14-2011 AD)

“Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated” (Romans 9:13). I realise that many of you will be surprised to read this week’s title and our text. I also realise that this article will bring me scorn and ridicule from many. Some of you are probably surprised that this text is in the Bible, or that any would even pose the question, “Does God love everybody?”

Contrary to popular opinion (for which we care little), God does not love everybody. The Bible is plain, “Esau have I hated.” Nor is this an isolated text, for we read in Psalm 11:5, “the Lord trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence, His soul hateth.” Also, we read in Proverbs 6:19 that God hates those who sow discord among brethren. Note well, that these texts say that God hates the persons of the wicked, not just their sins. There is a trite little saying parroted around that says that God “hates sin, but loves sinners.” This little saying has a measure of truth in it, for God does love elect sinners that He will bring to repentance, but in the mouths of false prophets, it is a most dangerous little saying, for it conveys to the minds of most people that God loves them though they despise Him and His ways and His Son and His grace. Many will end up in hell parroting, “God hates sin, but loves sinners.”

Now, I declare unto you that the false doctrine of “God loves everybody” is at the root of much false profession, false teaching and also much of the social ills of our time and place. Not only is this false teaching contrary to scripture, but it is the root of much noxious fruit. Multitudes having heard that God loves everybody, quite naturally presume that God loves them, since they are a somebody included in everybody. And so, (though they may not actually say it), reason within themselves that everything will be all right in eternity. “Since God loves me” they think, “He will probably forgive my sins and keep me out of hell, even though I love my sins and refuse to repent and to bow to the Lordship of Christ and come to God through Him.” Sinner, wake up and read my text, and come to grips with this fact, that God does not love everybody.

Now, there is a sense in which God does love everybody, and this is in no way contrary to what I have written thus far. God does love all men in the sense that He treats all men right. God treats all men according to His law. Those who are now in hell are being treated right. And when God sends you to hell, my friend, He will be treating you right. God is treating you right at this moment. He is letting you breathe His air. He lets you eat His food and drink His water. He lets you enjoy His sunshine. He gives you all these good gifts. In this sense, God does love everybody.

But my text speaks of salvation, and sovereign election, not the general benevolence of God. God blessed Esau with much material prosperity, but Esau found no place of repentance. God did not love Esau as he loved Jacob, with His saving love. God did something for Jacob that He did not do for Esau. God did something for Peter that He did not do for Judas. God loves His people with an everlasting love, but His everlasting indignation is set upon the reprobate. The Bible says, ”Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated.”

Now, I know many of you are now thinking, “what about John 3:16?” Lord willing, we will take that up next time.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

The Love of God

(Article for publication week of 9-7-2011 AD)

“Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love, therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee” (Jeremiah 31:3).

Love is a most misunderstood subject in our day, especially the love of God. Most people suppose that love is mere emotion, feeling, weakness, and sickly sentimentality. The Biblical concept of love, on the other hand is a commitment to treat others right, and that consistent with every other virtue. For instance, we read in Romans 13:10, “love is the fulfilling of the law.” To properly love, there must be a commitment to treat others according to the law of God.

This is an especially important truth as we take up the love of God. God’s love is perfectly consistent with all His other attributes. God’s love is consistent with His omnipotence, immutability, holiness, justice, wrath, mercy , grace, etc. So you need to get every humanistic idea about love out of your mind, especially regarding the love of God.

With that in mind, let us proceed to consider first of all, that God is sovereign in His love. Our text says, I have love thee.” Jehovah, the absolute sovereign of the universe made a determination in eternity to set His affections on His people. This is the fountainhead of salvation. In His sovereign love, God chose a people in Christ, and appointed Him as their Surety and Mediator and Covenant Head. Thus we see that God’s love was and is completely un-coerced. There was nothing in the creatures that could, or would have moved Him to set His affections upon them. As the poet has written, “what was there in you that could merit esteem, or give the Creator delight? ‘Twas even so Father you ever must sing, because it seemed good in Thy sight.” God loves His people simply because it is His good pleasure so to do.

Secondly, notice that God’s love is everlasting. “I have love thee with an everlasting love.” There was never a time when God did not love His people. As it says in Romans 8:29, we were foreknown by God. Nor will God’s love for His elect ever cease. God’s love for His elect did not cease when we fell in Adam and became polluted by sin. God commended His love toward us while we were yet sinners (Romans 5:8). Nor will God ever cease to love His people, for again, it is everlasting.

Thirdly, notice that God’s love is active. “With lovingkindness have I drawn thee. (I can’t help but notice that my computer has underlined ‘lovingkindness’. It is an unfeeling machine, but the souls of God’s people recognise this word, and love it!) God’s love was commended toward us in sending His coequal and eternal Son to die in our room and stead to put away our sins.

Finally notice that God’s love is efficacious. God draws His people to himself. So, we also read in I John 4:19, “ we love Him because He first loved us.” God draws His elect unto Himself by regeneration and effectual calling so that they come to Him most willingly, and love the One Who has been so merciful and gracious to them. Where there is no love for God, there has been no saving work by God. But when God works saving grace in a poor sinner’s soul, that sinner becomes a lover of God.

Thank the Lord for His sovereign, everlasting, efficacious love.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Goodness of God

(Article for publication week of 8-31-2011 AD)

“For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting; and His truth endureth to all generations” (Psalm 100:5).

Jehovah, the only true God is essentially good. “In Him is no darkness at all” (I John 1:5). Jehovah, the God of the Bible is good in and of Himself, His goodness being un-derived. Whatever goodness may be found in any of His creatures, is all the gifting and gracing of God, but God Himself is essentially good.

Secondly, God is nothing but good. There are no variations whatever in Him. God is perfect in all His glorious being. The best of men are but men at best, as someone has said. The best of men still have their many faults. But not so with Jehovah. He is all good. His character is without any blemish or flaw. All His actions are good, because they proceed from the One Who is essentially and exclusively good.

Thirdly, the goodness of God is displayed by all His wonderful works to the children of men (Psalm 107:8,etc.). It was good of God to create man to begin with. It is in Him that “we live and move and have our being “ (Acts 17:28). God had no need of any of His creatures, for He was perfect and content in and of Himself. It was a glorious work proceeding from His goodness when God created us. Dear reader do you ever thank God for the very gift of your life, for letting you live in His world?

God’s goodness is directed toward all men, not just His people. “He maketh His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sendeth rain on the just and the unjust” (Matthew 5:45). God is good to those who do not even love Him. He gives the rain to unsaved people just like He does to the saved. He blesses unsaved men with families, and good jobs, and businesses, and good health, and material prosperity, because He is good. Sadly, many people presume upon the goodness of God, and vainly imagine that all is well with their souls because God has blessed them with temporal blessings. But note well, dear reader, God gives these things to the unjust as well as the just. Temporal blessings and prosperity are no proofs of a person being saved. The rich man in Luke 16 had his good things in this life, but now he is in hell and can’t ever get out. Lazarus must needs wait until after this life for his good things , which are eternally better.

But the greatest act of God’s goodness is seen in the salvation of sinners. Oh! How good of God to adopt us into His family from all eternity! Oh! How good of God to provide the imputed righteousness of His Son for the believer’s justification! Oh! How good of God to send His Holy Spirit into His people’s hearts to regenerate and sanctify us! Oh! How good of God to deliver us from the power of darkness and translate us into the kingdom of His dear Son! Oh! How good of God to call us out of the darkness of this world into the marvelous light of His Son! Oh! How good of God to prepare an eternal home for us to live with Him forever and ever!

No wonder the Psalmist would exclaim in Psalm 107:8 “Oh! That men would praise the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men!” Let us do so.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Sinners in the Hands of a Merciful God

(Article for publication week of 8-24-2011 AD)

“I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy” (Romans 9:15).

Some of our readers may have noticed that we have had several articles entitled “sinners in the hands of God”, inserting the particular attribute of God with which we have been dealing. You may also have remembered Jonathan Edwards’ famous sermon, “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God”, a sermon used of the Lord in the Great Awakening in the eighteenth century. I have deliberately entitled the concluding articles on some of God’s attributes this way to try to get some to see that they may not have had a Biblical understanding of what God is really like. One thing for sure, God is not like most people, including most professed Christians imagine. The only way that we can know what God is like is to read His Word. It will do you no good to worship a God of your imagination. You must worship the only true God, the God of the Bible.

Now it is very true, as Jonathan Edwards preached, that God is an angry God. He is angry with the wicked every day. But some of you may have never heard of any of Jonathan Edwards’ other sermons. If you spend some time with him, you will see that he actually preached more on the love, mercy, grace, etc. of God than on His wrath. Brother Edwards had a well-balanced, Biblical understanding of the attributes of God, and preached the whole counsel of God.

This is what I am labouring to show you friends, that God is a God of justice and mercy at the same time. He is a God of wrath and a God of love at the same time. It is a great mistake to take one of God’s attributes, and cling to that without any consideration for everything else the Bible says about God.

Our present day pulpits (to my mind) are much over balanced to the mercy, grace and love of God, without much emphasis on the justice, wrath, anger and hatred of God. Therefore, I have tried to present all these things to the reading public of our county (and our other readers).

And so, I conclude our short series on God’s mercy by commending you to that mercy. Praise the Lord! He will show mercy! Here is your warrant to come to God through His Son for salvation, for God has said, “I will have mercy.” God is able to show mercy to you poor sinner, through the justifying work of His Son. He maintains His strict justice, while showing mercy to the truly contrite, who believe in the Lord Jesus Christ.

Poor sinner, you are in the hands of an angry God, as Jonathan Edwards so rightly preached. But you are also in the hands of a merciful God. Make no presumption of God’s mercy, but flee to the Sin Bearer, the Lord Jesus Christ. In and of yourself, you can only face God in His justice. But, the sinner who is joined to Christ by faith alone will find the Lord to be most merciful. You are in the sovereign and all-powerful hand of Jehovah, Who has power to save, and power to damn. Cry out for mercy now, and beg God to save you by the merits of His Son. He is rich in mercy.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Sovereign Mercy

(Article for publication week of 8-17-2011 AD)

“… I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy” (Romans 9:15). The first thing I want you to see in our text this week is that God is absolutely sovereign in showing mercy to sinners. I wish you would stop now and go read the ninth chapter of Romans, and you will see the awful sovereignty of God. God is under no obligation to have mercy on any sinner. Were He obligated , it would cease to be mercy. Don’t you see that my friends? If God sent the whole human race to eternal hell, He would be a just and a good God, for hell is what sinful worms like you and me deserve. God says, “ I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy.”

Secondly, I want to point out that God will have mercy. God delights in mercy (Micah 7:18), and He is rich in mercy (Ephesians 2:4). God has promised that he will have mercy on every sinner that will repent of His sins, and trust in Christ Alone for salvation. The very angels in heaven rejoice when the chief of sinners repents, and God Himself rejoices. You will never find recorded in the scriptures where any who repented of their sins and believed in Christ were turned away. All of us who have believed in Christ can testify that God ‘s mercy was plenteous for us. I send out this proclamation of the gospel to you my friends, that there is mercy for the vilest sinner. “The vilest offender who truly believes, that moment from Jesus a pardon receives.” Yes, millions in heaven now , could they speak to you would say, “we found that God will show mercy to penitent sinners.” But there is still plenty of mercy for sinners. God has not expended His great treasure of mercy and grace. There is mercy reserved for you too, if you really hate your sins and want to be saved from them. Oh! What an encouraging word to sound forth today! God will have mercy!

But my text has a third point that I want you to see. Will God have mercy on you? Now friends and neighbors, mark it down. God only does one of two things with sinners (and you are a sinner). He either has mercy and saves a sinner, or He shows wrath to a sinner and damns him. There is no two ways about it. There is no middle of the road. God will either save you , and take you to heaven, or He will damn you and send you to hell. Now you think about that and let it sink in. Will you be an object of God’s wrath, or an object of His mercy? Now it is one thing to hear of God’s mercy, and another thing to be a recipient of it. Have you applied for mercy through the Sin Bearer, the Lord Jesus Christ? He is the only way that God will spare you. If you are not in Christ, there is no mercy for you. Come to Christ and do not delay. Flee from the wrath to come and seek salvation through Christ, for there is salvation in none other. May the Lord have mercy on you.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

The Mercy of God

(Article for publication week of 8-10-2011 AD)

“Who is a pardoning God like Thee, that pardeneth iniquity, that passeth by the transgression of the remnant of His heritage? He retained not His anger forever, because He delighted in mercy” (Micah 7:18). Dear reader, do you not rejoice to know that God is merciful? Where would you and I be were it not for the mercy of God? Thank the Lord that he delights in mercy!

Mercy may be distinguished from grace. Grace is when God gives a sinner what he does not deserve. Salvation is a free gift of God and is bestowed upon believers in Christ gratuitously by God. None of us deserve salvation; therefore it is all of grace.

On the other hand, mercy is when God withholds from us what we do deserve. Every person deserves eternal punishment in hell, so when God saves a sinner from hell, it is all of His mercy. Dear reader, do you realise that you are a hell-deserving sinner?

God’s mercy may also be distinguished temporally and eternally. Everyone, saved and unsaved enjoys the temporal mercy of God. It is a mercy of God that He lets a hell-deserving sinner live any time outside of hell. To be able to draw a single breath out of hell is all of God’s mercy. When you come to realise that, you will certainly see that you are indeed getting better than you deserve. Regardless of what you are going through today, if you are not already in hell, you are doing better than you deserve, for that is exactly what you, a poor sinner deserves by nature. And, no matter what present misery you are now in, the fact that it is not much worse is a mercy of God. Many of you that are unsaved are enjoying good health, respectable families, and material prosperity, and that is all of God’s mercy. These are temporal mercies that all people enjoy to one degree or another.

But, then there is the eternal mercy of God whereby He withholds from elect sinners what they deserve eternally. Thus our text speaks of God’s mercy toward the “remnant of His heritage.” God mercifully spares the believer in Christ (synonymous with “elect sinners”) from the hell he deserves because His justice was satisfied by the atoning death of Christ. This is a mercy that only the believer in Christ enjoys. God delights in mercy! He showed mercy to His elect people by passing the punishment that we deserved to His Eternal and Coequal Son! Oh! Thank God for such mercy!

Now, dear reader, think not that because God has kept you out of hell until today that He will always show such mercy to you. Saving mercy is in Christ Alone. Unless you are joined to the Sin Bearer by faith, you will find out that God’s mercy was only for this life. Unless the justice of God towards you as a hell deserving sinner is satisfied by Christ, you will at last be cast into eternal torment where God’s mercy will be no more. In hell you will never hear another gospel message about God’s mercy for sinners. In hell you will never be able to read the Narrow Way again. In hell you will not have anyone plead with you to repent and believe in Christ. You will not enjoy a family, health or prosperity again. It will be all over for you- forever.

Oh! Poor sinner! Come to the Dear Saviour of sinners today while there is still mercy to be found. God delights in mercy so much that He gave His Son to be a Saviour and Redeemer for all who would ever believe in Him. May the Holy Spirit draw you to the merciful Saviour now.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

God’s Wrath Appeased

(Article for publication week of 7-27-2011 AD)

“Being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in His blood…” (Romans 3:23-24b). In our recent series of articles on the attributes of God, we have been declaring the wrath of God. God is justly angry with the wicked.

Our text this week tells us how the wrath of God is turned away from the believer in Christ. It is through the propitiation of Christ.

Propitiation is a very delightful word, and a Biblical concept with which every believer should be well acquainted. Most modern Bible translations do not use this wonderful old word, and that is one of many reasons why you should avoid them. Many of the people that have been involved in modern translations are infidels themselves, and deny such truths as propitiation. It is my understanding that the word propitiation came into the English language with William Tyndale’s translation of the New Testament

Propitiation means that God’s wrath has been appeased by the atoning death of Christ. God’s wrath has been vented against a holy Victim that suffered Divine vengeance once for all. Propitiation means that Christ made an atoning sacrifice to pay the penalty due for sin, and against sinners.

Remember God is perfectly holy and perfectly just, and so He must punish sin. God will not allow any sin to go unpunished. Unless God’s wrath against the sinner is appeased and Divine justice satisfied, then the sinner must and will be punished for his own sins. This is where every sinner without Christ now stands. The sinner without Christ must answer directly to God for His sins. Poor sinner, can you bear the thought of having to pay the awful penalty for your sins? Unless the sword of God’s vengeance be turned away from you, it will cut you in pieces forever.

But now hear the gospel news! Christ was made a propitiation for all who would ever believe in Him! God made His eternal and coequal Son the victim of His wrath so that His elect people would not have to suffer the penalty for sin. The believer in Christ has a Substitute! God is not angry with the believer, for His wrath was fully appeased by the death of Christ. God is perfectly holy and perfectly just, and so He will not punish sin twice. God will not punish the Surety, and the one for whom the Surety stands good. This is what Christ is for His chosen people- their Surety (Hebrews 7:22).

Those in hell (and there are billions there at this moment, many with whom you were once familiar) have no substitute, and so they are suffering the eternal vengeance of God. You will soon be there also, unless a Fit Substitute be found for you. I beseech you by the mercies of God to flee to Christ, the only Fit Substitute.

Believer in Christ, here your comfort stands. Salvation is all of the Lord from first to last. Christ has made satisfaction for sin. He has died an atoning death. Never can any charge be brought against one who has Christ (Romans 8:33). The believer’s sins are all taken away! Therefore a just and holy God will never exercise His wrath against the sinner who is in Christ. May the Lord give you grace to believe this glorious gospel of salvation by God’s free and sovereign grace.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Sinners in the Hands of a Wrathful Christ

(Article for publication week of 7-20-2011 AD)

“And the kings of the earth, and the great men, and the rich men, and the chief captains, and the mighty men, and every bondman, and every free man, hid themselves in the dens and in the rocks of the mountains; And said to the mountains and rocks, ‘Fall on us, and hide us from the face of Him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb: for the day of His wrath is come; and who shall be able to stand?” (Revelation 6:15-17).

The Lord Jesus Christ is a far different Person than most people, and many professing Christians suppose. Most people think that the Lord Jesus Christ is a harmless sissy that wouldn’t hurt a flea. But in the Day of Judgment, you will find out that He is a wrathful Christ.

First of all, note well that Christ is God, for our text says that He sits on a throne. He is the King of Kings and Lord of Lords Who is omnipotent. This omnipotent Christ will judge the world in righteousness. Dear reader, you must face the Judge of all the earth, the Lord Jesus Christ, and give an account of yourself. You will find out in that day that He is not the little sissy portrayed in “religious art”. Our Lord declared the solemn fact of His righteous judgment many times in His Own earthly ministry. For example in Matthew 7:21-23, He said plainly that He would personally consign His enemies to hell.

Our text also proves the Deity of Christ by His omniscience. You cannot hide from Him. At this very moment He knows if you are a professed believer in Himself, and whether your profession is genuine. You cannot hide from Christ, for He is omniscient God. All the great mountains of the earth, and all the rocks cannot hide you from the presence of Him to Whom hath been committed the judgment of your poor soul.

Though the mountains are no refuge for a lost sinner, there is a refuge from the judgment to come, that is this Lamb Himself. Though He will get vengeance on His enemies, He will have mercy on every sinner that will repent of his sins and hide himself in the Rock of Ages. Dear reader, you do not want to be an enemy of the Lamb of God! If you do not make peace with Him now, it will be too late when you die and meet Him in judgment.

I have chosen the title of my article purposefully this week (as I always do). Some of you may remember a famous sermon preached by Jonathan Edwards entitled “Sinners in the hands of an Angry God.” That was in my mind as I entitled this article, “Sinners in the Hands of a Wrathful Christ“. I want you to see the whole truth about Christ, the Lamb of God. He is justly angry with His enemies, and justly merciful to all who repent and trust in Him for salvation. Flee to Him today, or you will futilely be trying to flee from Him at the last day.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

God’s Holy and Just Wrath

(Article for publication week of 7-13-2011 AD)

“See now that I, even I am He, and there is no god with me: I kill, and I make alive; I wound, and I heal: neither is there any that can deliver out of my hand. For I lift up my hand to heaven, and say, ‘ I live forever.’ If I whet my glittering sword, and mine hand take hold on judgment; I will render vengeance to mine enemies, and will reward them that hate me” (Deuteronomy 32:39-41).

God’s wrath is the execution of His holy justice upon His enemies in righteous indignation for their sins. God’s wrath is consistent with all His perfections. You may ask, “How can a God of love and grace also be a God of wrath?” This is easily illustrated by the example of a good and wise earthly father. A good man will be merciful and kind to his own children, but he will be stirred to wrath against any who attempt to hurt his children. We may also illustrate it by a good judge (a rarity these days and in these parts). A good judge wants the best for the commonwealth and so he is ready to execute the penalty of the law on criminals. So a good man is both merciful and wrathful. God Who is thrice holy is infinitely greater and purer than these examples, so we should not be surprised to read of His vengeance upon sinners who are cosmic rebels and law breakers.

Our text says that God kills people. The sword of His wrath is sharpened and prepared to punish you my sinner friend. Sinner, you are an enemy of God.

Now, I know that many of you reading this do not consider yourself to be a sinner, nor an enemy of God. Some of you are very respectable people. But neighbour, if you are not born again, you are an enemy of God. You may be respectable, and even religious, but if you are not a believer in Christ you are an enemy of God (John 5:23).

God’s vengeance is oft times slow in its execution, but it is certain. You may not see the Lord sharpening His sword, but be sure the Bible says that He is. God’s sword is being prepared for you my unconverted friends. You may try to put it out of your mind, but it certainly awaits you. You think that “out of sight is out of mind”, but hell gapes its infernal jaws for you even as you read these words. Except you repent and believe in the only Saviour of sinners, hell will be your eternal home. God will not feel sorry for you if you refuse His remedy for sin and sinners. You can hide behind a religious veneer, but God’s wrath will catch up with you. You can console yourself with false ideas of a god who is too weak and pitiful to punish sinners, but your imagination will not make God’s wrath go away. You can go to a psychiatrist who will help you make excuses for your sin (for that is all psychology is), but God’s glittering sword will not go away.

There is somebody reading this week who needs to contact me so I can tell you how to be saved and escape the wrath of God. May God spare you before it is everlastingly too late.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

The Wrath of God

(Article for publication week of 7-6-2011 AD)

“For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold (or suppress) the truth in unrighteousness” (Romans 1:18).

God’s wrath is His holy hatred of sin. The true God Who is thrice holy must hate everything that is unholy. So our text says that His wrath is being revealed against everything and everybody that is ungodly and unrighteous.

Dear reader, do you understand that God is rightfully angry with the wicked every day? (Psalm 7:11). Lost sinner, do you realize that God is angry with you? He is awfully displeased with your rebellion, for that is exactly what your sin is. The wrath of God is hanging over every sinner who is outside of Christ (John 3:36). The sword of God’s terrible justice is now being whetted for your everlasting and just execution. I emphasize, God is too holy not to hate sin, and sinners.

God’s wrath is already being revealed from heaven. The wrath of God was revealed when God pronounced the curse of death upon the human race in the day that Adam transgressed His holy law. God has revealed His wrath from heaven by sending the flood on the old world. He revealed His wrath against the filthy perverts of Sodom and Gomorrah by raining down fire and brimstone upon them and wiping them off the face of the map. God continues to reveal His wrath by sending terrible calamities on sinners. Hurricanes and tornadoes are not sent by “mother nature.” They are not caused by “global warming.” These disasters are sent from the hand of a thrice-holy God Who reveals His wrath and hot displeasure against sinners.

Now, I know many of you do not believe in a God like that. But that is because you are a lost, unconverted sinner yourself and do not believe the Bible nor the God of the Bible. The God of the Bible sent a great flood and killed probably billions of people at one lick. The God of the Bible opened up the earth and swallowed up Core and his followers and sent them down to the pit and didn’t even give them time to pack their bags. The God of the Bible kills people (Deuteronomy 32:39-41). Don’t believe the false prophets who try to tell you that God is only love. Romans 11:22 says “behold the goodness and severity of God.” Most of you have a truncated view of God. You only think of God’s love and goodness, but you do not believe everything the Bible says about our thrice-holy God. God’s wrath is as much of His holy character as His love, mercy, grace and goodness.

God’s wrath has been, and is presently being, revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness. But if you are not made to fear God by His present revelations of His wrath, you will one day be cut down forever by His awful vengeance when He pours out His holy wrath on you and sends you down to hell and the lake of fire forever.

Such a God is to be feared. The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom. Knowing the terror of the Lord (II Corinthians 5:11), I seek to persuade you today to repent of your sins before God’s awful vengeance is turned loose on you forever. My unconverted friends and neighbors and kinfolks, I repeat the solemn warning of the Lamb Himself, from Whose wrath you cannot hide (Revelation 6:16), “repent or perish” (Luke 13:5). Turn or burn sinner, for God’s wrath is upon you.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sinners in the Hands of a Gracious God

(Article for publication week of 6-29-2011 AD)

“If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious” (I Peter 2:3).

Oh! How wonderful to read in the scriptures that the Lord is gracious! Well did John Newton express it in his well known hymn “Amazing Grace”, “how precious did that grace appear the hour I first believed.” Grace is indeed precious to a believer who has come to the end of himself and believed in Christ for his whole and sole righteousness. Grace is indeed precious to one who knows himself to be undeserving, ill deserving and hell deserving. Grace is indeed precious when we first believe in Christ, but it appears more precious day by day to the child of God.

When the Lord shows one of His elect children how vile and loathsome he is by nature, he is first of all struck with fear knowing that God is all holy and he, the wretched sinner is all unholy. God brings His children to the place where they are made to see that they well deserve eternal damnation. And again as Newton wrote, ”twas grace that taught my heart to fear.” It is a painful experience that we must go through to come to the place that we are ready to quit all our own efforts and trust in Christ Alone as the Rock of Ages of our souls. But it is the way the Lord leads His chosen ones. What dread and foreboding filled my soul when I realized I was in the hands of a Thrice Holy God Who could and would send sinners like me to hell.

But, Oh! how sweet did this grace taste to us when this same grace that taught us to fear God, relieved our fears! How strange is the course a Christian must walk. The same grace that brings him low at last sets him on high! The same grace that kills his self righteousness, makes him alive in Christ. The same grace that strips away his rags, clothes him well from top to toe with the robe of Christ. The same grace that wounds, also heals. Oh! How wonderful to believe and know that we are in the hands of a God Who has said He will be gracious to sinners!

Poor sinner, do I write of your own experience? Have you come to see that you deserve nothing from God but His everlasting contempt? Are you mourning deep down in your soul because of your desperate situation? Well, let me drop a word of cheer and comfort into your soul. God is gracious! He saves real sinners. Though you may feel yourself too bad for God to save you, He is gracious. Remember , Christ, Who was full of grace and truth came into the world to save the chief of sinners.

Now, here is set before you a well from which you may drink and taste the grace of God. Taste that the Lord is gracious. You know, only the thirsty are interested in a well. So it is true spiritually, only those who are thirsty in their souls are interested in drinking from the well of salvation. Poor sinner, such a thirst is from God! He Who provides the well of grace, works in His children in such a way as to make them thirsty for the grace He provides. Come poor sinners. Come and taste of the sovereign grace of God. Come and believe in Christ for salvation. You are in the hands of the God of heaven and earth Who has said He will be gracious to sinners. I give you this gospel promise on the authority of Him Who cannot lie , and has revealed in His Word that He is gracious. May the Lord bless His dear children.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Amazing Grace

(Article for publication week of 6-22-2011 AD)

“But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound” (Romans 5:20).

God’s grace is indeed amazing! What an amazing thing- that God would save the undeserving, the ill deserving, the hell deserving. God goes not save the good folks, He saves sinners. Now, if you know yourself to be a sinner, that is most welcome news! (I know in good writing you are not supposed to use many exclamation points, but I am not trying to be an accomplished writer, I am publishing the gospel for sinners, and that gets me excited!)

First of all let us notice the context in which our verse is set. These are the conclusive words of Paul’s explanation of the doctrine of justification which runs from Romans 3:21 until the end of chapter five. In Romans 1:18- 3:20, Paul had shown that all men are justly condemned under the law. Then he explains that God freely justifies sinners by grace alone, through faith in Christ Alone. God justifies the ungodly (Romans 4:5). OH! What a joyous message for sinners! God saves the ungodly, not the godly! How contrary to nature and opposed to everything that man thinks naturally! Where sin abounded, grace did much more abound. God’s grace is amazing indeed.

Secondly, let us see how amazing God’s grace is by considering some of the wretches that God has saved through the merits of His Son. I think of King Manasseh (II Chronicles 33:12-13). He had been a horrible idolater and even sacrificed his own children. What a wretch. But God saved that old sinner and he is in heaven right now. Then I think of the woman in Luke seven that washed the Saviour’s feet with her tears. She had been a filthy harlot. But the Saviour’s grace was greater than her sins, and He said, “thy faith hath saved thee.” Then I think of the dying thief (Luke 23:39-43). All he had was a life of crime and sin to recommend himself to the dear Saviour. He could not go back and change anything. He was nailed to a cross, and he couldn’t go and get baptized. It was too late to reform and start living a good moral life. All he could do was beg the dear Savior “Lord remember me.” He did not try to pray a long elaborate prayer; he just said, “Lord, remember me.“ And the Saviour remembered him and that thief was a Christian for only a few hours at the most, but he has been in heaven for over two thousand years, and no one can throw him out. And then I think of that old self-righteous persecutor, Saul of Tarsus. He hated Christ and His gospel and His Church. But God had mercy on that blasphemer and saved him on the Damascus road while he was yet breathing out threatening and slaughter against Christ.

But mostly when I think of God’s grace abounding to me the chief of sinners, worse than all these I have mentioned, I see how amazing God’s grace is. I was as vile as sinner could be. I was worse than Manasseh and the harlot in Luke seven, and the dying thief and Saul of Tarsus put together. But God set His affection on me in the eternities and saved the vilest of the vile. The blood of Christ availed for me. “I once was lost, but now am found”!

Are any of my readers vile sinners who are in agony of soul? Is there some soul out there broken hearted because you know you have offended such a good and holy God? Well, I have the gospel for you. God’s grace is greater than all our sin. God justifies the ungodly. You may come to Christ as you read these words. You don’t have to wait until you get to the church this Sunday. You may be saved from your sin as Manasseh, the harlot in Luke seven, the dying thief, Saul of Tarsus, and millions of other sinners to whom God’s grace abounded. As dear Joseph Hart wrote, “come ye sinners, poor and needy, weak and wounded, sick and sore. Jesus ready stands to save you, full of pity, joined with power.” Flee to the Saviour of sinners. Your sin is not as great as His grace and you will find that His grace is indeed amazing. May the Holy Spirit draw you to Christ this very moment.