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.

Saturday, December 21, 2013

Faith That Saves

(Article for publication week of 12-26- AD 2013)

"But we are not of them who draw back unto perdition; but of them that believe to the saving of the soul" (Hebrews 10:39). That none can be saved apart from faith is evident from even a cursory reading of the scriptures. In our text today Paul (I realize some have questioned the Pauline authorship of the Book of Hebrews, but we hold with the old school who believed he was the inspired writer of the epistle in which we find this week's text; ultimately, we don't have to argue about it much, for the Holy Spirit is the true author of all scripture) numbers himself among those who believe to the saving of the soul. He recognizes that some who had once professed to believe had drawn away unto perdition, and proven themselves to be apostate, but he trusts that his hearers and readers will not draw back, but prove to be true believers.

The doctrine of saving faith is so simple a little child can understand it. We know a few who were converted and believed to the saving of their souls from a tender age. Saving faith is so simple that those with very limited intellect may exercise it. We have known a few who were what we call retarded who have believed to the saving of their souls. Saving faith is so simple that people with no education can believe in Christ and be saved. We have known of a few who could not read or write that believed the gospel they heard and were saved. The fact is, God has chosen the simple and the foolish and by-passed the wise and prudent (Matthew 11: 25). Saving faith is simple, but in spite of its simplicity, many get it mixed up and are not saved. In the coming months we will be addressing this eternally important subject of saving faith. I hope you will be reading and telling others to be reading the Narrow Way, and that some will believe to the saving of their souls.

Now, the very first thing I wish to point out is that there is a vast and eternal difference between saving faith and "believism." There are multitudes all around us who suppose all is well because they "believe", but they are not believing to the salvation of their souls. James 2:19 tells us that the devils have a sort of faith, but they are not saved, and cannot be saved. Our text here in Hebrews 10:39 plainly says that some who profess to believe draw back unto perdition. I fear that many of my readers have a "faith" no better than that of devils. I want you to pay close attention now, for it is vital for the salvation of your soul to know and understand what true saving faith is, and whether you have it or not.

I want to emphasize that saving faith is NOT a sinner's contribution to his own salvation. This is popularly believed in these parts. People are urged to believe in Christ, or to "accept Christ", but they do not know what they are believing, nor do they know the Christ they think they have "accepted". I heard a popular preacher at a funeral awhile back who urged us to get our "card punched." He said he had gotten his " card punched”, and therefore he was going to heaven, and if we got our "card punched", we could go to heaven also. Dear readers, this is not even a distant cousin to saving faith. Saving faith is a gift of God whereby an elect sinner, broken by the terror of the law, repents of his sins and flees to the Lord Jesus Christ, the only Saviour of sinners. Saving faith is in no sense meritorious, but relies wholly on the merits of Christ for salvation. Saving faith is not man -centered, but Christ-centered. Dear reader, will you believe to the saving of your soul?

Monday, December 16, 2013

Death and Judgment

(Article for publication week of 12-19- AD 2013)

"And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment" (Hebrews 9:27). The recent death of the communist thug, Nelson Mandela causes us to stop and reflect upon the sober reality of death and the certainty of judgment to come. While the liberal press and nominal "christians" have heralded Mandela's death as that of a hero, informed people know better. The facts are that Nelson Mandela was a communist terrorist and an enemy of Christ. As far as we as we know Mandela is in hell now and won't ever get out. He has kept that certain appointment that all of us will keep, and has met his Maker and Judge, who judges all men according to His strict justice (Roman 2:6), and not according to the depraved opinions of fallen man.

That Nelson Mandela is being eulogised as a hero is a testimony to the evil of the times and the willing ignorance of even professed Christians. The facts are that Nelson Mandela and his wife Winnie were leaders of the communist terrorist organisation , the African National Congress, which became the ruling party of South Africa. Mandela was jailed for acts of terrorism which he admitted. Mandela and his ilk, with the support of communists like Fidel Castro, and liberals in North America and Europe, and South African traitors in their press and academia and government led a communist revolution against the lawful government of South Africa. One of the African National Congress' favourite methods of terror was the practice of "necklacing" , perpetrated against their fellow blacks who would not join the African National Congress. The victim of "necklacing" had his hands and feet chopped off with an axe, and then a used car tire filled with diesel was put around his neck, and lit. Mandela's wife Winnie was quoted as saying , " with our matches and necklaces we will take over South Africa." After several decades of terrorism, international pressure, and internal treason, the South African government finally capitulated to Mandela and his communist thugs, and South Africa has been declining ever since.

Under White rule, South Africa was one of the most prosperous nations on earth, rivaling the USA in terms of economic prosperity. Under White rule the blacks in South Africa had the highest standard of living of any blacks on the African Continent. Since the ANC has taken over, South Africa is fast becoming a third world country. Nelson Mandela was instrumental in writing a new "constitution" for South Africa and one of the articles he insisted on putting in was "rights" for Sodomites.

But liberals and willingly ignorant "christians" will protest, "but Mandela helped end apartheid (segregation)." The fact is that apartheid was a good system under which all races in South Africa prospered. The scriptures nowhere condemn apartheid as sinful. In fact God commanded Israel to practice apartheid (Deuteronomy 7:3; Joshua 23:12). You had better be careful what you call sin lest ye charge God with sin. Sin is the transgression of the law of God (I John 3:4), not the violation of the pet peeves of liberals. Apartheid (segregation) is not condemned by the law of God and required no one to break the law of God.

Now, we are faced with an awful reality. Each of us must die and face God to be judged for the deeds done in the body, whether they be good or bad. When you read an obituary, or the news account of the death of a man, it is a solemn reminder that a man has gone into eternity. And it is a solemn reminder that you will die. It is a solemn reminder that God's word is truth, that it is indeed appointed to each of us to die and meet our Maker and Judge. Dear reader, you better be sure the eulogies and accolades of men will do you no good when that time comes for you. Unless God finds you righteous according to His law, you will spend eternity in hell with the Devil and Nelson Mandela and all the wicked crew who lived in the broad way. You better be sure you know what God says about sin, and His remedy for it. May God have mercy on your poor soul.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Have You Ever Been Lost?

(Article for publication week of 12-5- AD 2013)

"For the Son of man is come to seek and to save that which is lost" (Luke 19:10).

Dear reader, have you ever been lost? I ask you not "have you been saved?”, but I ask you rather, "Have you ever been lost?" Mark it down dear ones, if you have never been lost, you surely have never been saved, for the only ones that Christ saves are those who are lost.

Many years ago when the power of God was upon Pastor L. R. Shelton in the New Orleans area, one of his hearers told her neighbour, "You need to come hear my preacher so you can get lost"! Oh! how we need such an awakening ministry in our day! This is the great need of the hour, to get men lost. I fear we have pulpits and pews filled with people who have never been convinced by the Holy Spirit that they are lost sinners. We have multitudes who have "decided for Jesus" and such other mess who have bypassed Holy Spirit conviction. We have a whole generation of religionists who have never felt the plague of their heart nor seen their utterly lost condition. We have those all around us who have a false peace, and false prophets crying "peace, peace," when there is no peace. We have folks who can sing "Amazing Grace" like nobody's business, but they haven't a clue what John Newton meant when he said, "I once was lost"! Dear reader, have you ever been lost?! This is an eternally important question, for if you have never been lost, you surely have never been found, I don't care if you know every verse of "Amazing Grace" by heart and can sing it frontward and backwards.

Now what does it mean to be lost? A lost sinner is a sinner who has been convinced by the Holy Ghost that he is indeed a thousand talents in debt, and has not a farthing to pay. A lost sinner is one who has read in God's word that "all have sinned and come short of the glory of God" and knows it is talking about himself. A lost sinner has felt the terror of the law of God rightfully condemning him to an eternal lake of fire. A lost sinner is one who can sing from the heart "Show pity Lord, oh Lord forgive, let a repenting rebel live;" and "if my soul were sent to hell, Thy righteous law approves it well" (Isaac Watts). A lost sinner is one who has felt in his very soul that he is indeed too sinful for the Lord to save. A lost sinner is one who hates sin in himself, more than sin in his neighbour. A lost sinner is one who feels himself unable to pray. A lost sinner is one who feels his repentance is a lie, and his faith is insufficient. A lost sinner repents of his prayers, and prays over his repentance. A lost sinner is one who says, "Oh! wretched man that I am." A lost sinner is one who abhors himself and knows that he is a loathsome thing in the eyes of the thrice-Holy God. A lost sinner is one who has been emptied of all his self-righteousness. A lost sinner is one who really believes he is no more than a worm in the sight of God. A lost sinner has lost all his "self esteem", and is made to cry unto God, "Lord save, or I perish!"

Do I describe anybody's case? Is there a lost sinner anywhere in Simpson County? Is there a lost sinner among my readers? Well, if you are lost, I have a gospel to preach to you! Christ came into the world to save you! Though you know yourself to be a vile wretch, Christ is able and willing to save the vilest of the vile. I leave you with the precious words of Christ to sinners, "Him that cometh to me, I will in no wise cast out." May the Holy Spirit convict some of their sins and draw them to the mercy seat this day.